Storrs, CT, United States
Storrs, CT, United States

The University of Connecticut is a public research university in the U.S. state of Connecticut. UConn was founded in 1881 and is a Land Grant and Sea Grant college & member of the Space Grant Consortium. The university serves more than 30,000 students on its six campuses, including more than 8,000 graduate students in multiple programs.UConn is one of the founding institutions of the Hartford, Connecticut/Springfield, Massachusetts regional economic and cultural partnership alliance known as New England's Knowledge Corridor. UConn is a member of Universitas 21, a global network of 24 research-intensive universities, who work together to foster global citizenship. UConn is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.UConn was founded in 1881 as the Storrs Agricultural School, named after two brothers who donated the land for the school. In 1893, the school became a land grant college. In 1939, the name was changed to the University of Connecticut. Over the next decade, social work, nursing, and graduate programs were established, and existing schools of law and pharmacy were absorbed into the university. During the 1960s, the University of Connecticut Health Center was established for new medical and dental schools. John Dempsey Hospital opened in Farmington in 1975.Competing in the American Athletic Conference as the Huskies, UConn has been particularly successful in their Men's and Women's Basketball programs. The Huskies have won a total of 18 NCAA championships. Wikipedia.

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University of Connecticut | Date: 2016-06-10

A method and corresponding apparatus for monitoring breathing computes a calibration signal from a first sequence of images of a users chest to produce a calibration model.. The calibration signal is representative of movement of the users chest during a first time period during which the user is using an incentive spirometer a commercially-available (IS). The first sequence of images corresponds to the first time period. A method and corresponding apparatus employ the calibration model to produce a breathing information estimate about the users breathing from a second sequence of images of the users chest corresponding to a second time period during which the user is not using the a commercially-available IS. Example applications for the method and corresponding apparatus include vital sign applications for personalized healthcare through use of a smartphone.

Baxalta Incorporated and University of Connecticut | Date: 2016-05-03

A Factor VIII (FVIII) composition formulated such that NaCl is not present in the final formulation or is present in trace amounts, which allows for a concomitant reduction in the lyophilization cycle time and increased stability of the lyophilized FVIII.

University of Connecticut | Date: 2016-07-27

Advantageous instruments, assemblies and methods are provided for undertaking imaging techniques (e.g., microscopic imaging techniques). The present disclosure provides improved imaging techniques, equipment and systems. More particularly, the present disclosure provides advantageous microscopy/imaging assemblies with rapid sample auto-focusing (e.g., microscopy/imaging assemblies having instant focusing for rapid sample imaging with auto-focusing). The present disclosure provides for high-throughput whole slide imaging with instant focal plane detection. A whole slide imaging platform/assembly that uses instant focusing systems/methods for high-speed sample autofocusing is provided. Such exemplary platforms/assemblies can be used for digital pathology or the like, and can provide improved, faster and cheaper diagnosis/prognosis of ailments/diseases. At least two exemplary rapid-focus systems for whole slide imaging are provided, a first system including two pinhole-modulated cameras mounted on the eyepiece ports of a microscope platform/assembly, and a second system including one pinhole-modulated camera mounted on the epi-illumination arm for auto-focusing.

University of Arizona and University of Connecticut | Date: 2015-03-05

A wearable 3D augmented reality display and method, which may include 3D integral imaging optics.

Willen S.S.,University of Connecticut | Knipper M.,Justus Liebig University | Abadia-Barrero C.E.,University of Connecticut | Davidovitch N.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev
The Lancet | Year: 2017

Investigators working both in syndemics, a field of applied health research with roots in medical anthropology, and in the field of health and human rights recognise that upstream social, political, and structural determinants contribute more to health inequities than do biological factors or personal choices. Syndemics investigates synergistic, often deleterious interactions among comorbid health conditions, especially under circumstances of structural and political adversity. Health and human rights research draws on international law to argue that all people deserve access not only to health care, but also to the underlying determinants of good health. Taking the urgent matter of migrant health as an empirical focus, we juxtapose the fields of syndemics and health and human rights, identify their complementarities, and advocate for a combined approach. By melding insights from these fields, the combined syndemics/health and human rights approach advanced here can provide clinicians and other key stakeholders with concrete insights, tools, and strategies to tackle the health inequities that affect migrants and other vulnerable groups by: (1) mapping the effect of social, political, and structural determinants on health; (2) identifying opportunities for upstream intervention; and (3) working collaboratively to tackle the structures, institutions, and processes that cause and exacerbate health inequities. Undergirding this approach is an egalitarian interpretation of the right to health that differs from narrow legalistic and individual interpretations by insisting that all people are equal in worth and, as a result, equally deserving of protection from syndemic vulnerability. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Singer M.,University of Connecticut | Bulled N.,Worcester Polytechnic Institute | Ostrach B.,Boston University | Mendenhall E.,Georgetown University
The Lancet | Year: 2017

The syndemics model of health focuses on the biosocial complex, which consists of interacting, co-present, or sequential diseases and the social and environmental factors that promote and enhance the negative effects of disease interaction. This emergent approach to health conception and clinical practice reconfigures conventional historical understanding of diseases as distinct entities in nature, separate from other diseases and independent of the social contexts in which they are found. Rather, all of these factors tend to interact synergistically in various and consequential ways, having a substantial impact on the health of individuals and whole populations. Specifically, a syndemics approach examines why certain diseases cluster (ie, multiple diseases affecting individuals and groups); the pathways through which they interact biologically in individuals and within populations, and thereby multiply their overall disease burden, and the ways in which social environments, especially conditions of social inequality and injustice, contribute to disease clustering and interaction as well as to vulnerability. In this Series, the contributions of the syndemics approach for understanding both interacting chronic diseases in social context, and the implications of a syndemics orientation to the issue of health rights, are examined. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Kashwan P.,University of Connecticut
Ecological Economics | Year: 2017

This paper joins the debate on the relationship between inequality and the environment. Departing from the past contributions, which focused either on the theories of environmental behavior or on economic interests, this paper develops arguments about “political choice” mechanisms that help explain the linkages between inequality and national policymaking related to the establishment of protected areas. A cross-national analysis of the interactions between inequality, democracy and the legal designation of protected areas in a global sample of 137 countries shows that, ceteris paribus, the effects of inequality vary depending on the strength of democracy: in relatively democratic countries inequality is associated with less land in protected areas, whereas in relatively undemocratic countries the reverse is true. The highly significant effects of inequality undermine the democratic dividend in the arena of nature conservation. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.

Deener A.,University of Connecticut
Social Forces | Year: 2017

This article develops the concept of infrastructural exclusion as a form of urban inequality through the case of the origins of the food desert in Philadelphia. Infrastructural exclusion refers to the reorganization of spatial and material interdependence into a semi-autonomous and path-dependent force that separates resources from those reliant on them. Building on archival research, it emphasizes how social problems arise out of taken-for-granted relationships between urban development, population settlements, and distribution systems. Grocery chains were interdependent with urban neighborhoods in the early 1900s, but they came to participate in a fiercely competitive industry during a precarious period of urban decline, suburban growth, and changes in transportation systems. New industry conventions about profitability, involving higher-volume supplies and lower transaction costs, became embedded into the sociotechnical infrastructure. The reorganization of infrastructural interdependence as a semi-autonomous force constrained local business decision-making, led to high rates of financial insolvency, and contributed to the overall decline of urban grocery markets. This approach to infrastructural exclusion provides insights into the causes of a unique form of urban inequality. © The Author 2017.

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut
Progress in Particle and Nuclear Physics | Year: 2017

In 2013 the Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to Francois Englert and Peter Higgs for their work in 1964 along with the late Robert Brout on the mass generation mechanism (the Higgs mechanism) in local gauge theories. This mechanism requires the existence of a massive scalar particle, the Higgs boson, and in 2012 the Higgs boson was finally discovered at the Large Hadron Collider after being sought for almost half a century. In this article we review the work that led to the discovery of the Higgs boson and discuss its implications. We approach the topic from the perspective of a dynamically generated Higgs boson that is a fermion–antifermion bound state rather than an elementary field that appears in an input Lagrangian. In particular, we emphasize the connection with the Bardeen–Cooper–Schrieffer theory of superconductivity. We identify the double-well Higgs potential not as a fundamental potential but as a mean-field effective Lagrangian with a dynamical Higgs boson being generated through a residual interaction that accompanies the mean-field Lagrangian. We discuss what we believe to be the key challenge raised by the discovery of the Higgs boson, namely determining whether it is elementary or composite, and through study of a conformal invariant field theory model as realized with critical scaling and anomalous dimensions, suggest that the width of the Higgs boson might serve as a suitable diagnostic for discriminating between an elementary Higgs boson and a composite one. We discuss the implications of Higgs boson mass generation for the cosmological constant problem, as the cosmological constant receives contributions from the very mechanism that generates the Higgs boson mass in the first place. We show that the contribution to the cosmological constant due to a composite Higgs boson is more tractable and under control than the contribution due to an elementary Higgs boson, and is potentially completely under control if there is an underlying conformal symmetry not just in a critical scaling matter sector (which there would have to be if all mass scales are to be dynamical), but equally in the gravity sector to which the matter sector couples. © 2017 Elsevier B.V.

Clement J.M.,University of Connecticut | Sweeney C.J.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Journal of Oncology Practice | Year: 2017

Oligometastatic disease was postulated byHellman andWeichselbaum in 1995 to be a disease state that may reflect a time point in themalignant process thatmay be amenable to local therapies to allow for patients to achieve a durable response or possible cure despite having advanced disease. Aggressive metastasis-directed therapy has been used inmalignancies such as renal cell carcinoma, non-small-cell lung cancer, and colorectal cancer with some evidence of long-term benefit in selected patients. Recently, it has been proposed that some men with oligometastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancermay also benefit frommetastasis-directed therapy. As with most malignancies, optimal therapy for prostate cancer relies on multimodal therapy, best highlighted by the survival benefit seen in high-volume metastatic prostate cancer with the addition of docetaxel to androgen-deprivation therapy. This is becoming increasingly evident for oligometastatic prostate cancer, with emerging data sets suggesting a possible benefit of local ablative therapies for metastatic lesions combined with androgendeprivation therapy. However, the bulk of the data is retrospective and thus subject to bias. Ongoing clinical trials are evaluating combination therapy to help elucidate the role of each therapy separately and together to determine optimal interventions for this population. This clinical review discusses the retrospective data evaluating local therapies such as radiation and surgeryinmenwithlymphnode-positive disease,aswellaslimitedbonemetastases,andoutlines ongoing, prospective clinical trials designed to further investigate the role of multimodality therapy in the outcomes of men with oligometastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancer. Copyright © 2017 by American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Eremita M.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics | Year: 2017

OBJECTIVE:: We aimed to identify characteristics of parents who do not voice developmental concerns when prompted by their childrenʼs nurse and/or primary care provider (PCP), despite reporting concerns on parent-completed questionnaires. METHODS:: We reviewed 376 medical records of children seen for a 9-month well-child visit in an urban pediatric clinic between September 2011 and December 2012 for sociodemographic variables hypothesized to affect parentsʼ sharing of developmental concerns: the childʼs birth order and gender; parentsʼ education level, employment, relationship status, and primary language; and family size and racial/ethnic background. The target population was parents who reported concerns on the Parentsʼ Evaluation of Developmental Status (PEDS), a routinely administered, parent-completed screening questionnaire. We subdivided parents who reported concerns on the PEDS (N = 86) based on whether they voiced developmental concerns when prompted by their childrenʼs nurse and/or PCP. Two-sided Fisherʼs exact tests and logistic regression evaluated the relationship between sociodemographic variables and parentsʼ voicing of developmental concerns. RESULTS:: Only parent education approached significance, as parents with less than a high school education (

Gupta P.,University of Connecticut | White W.B.,University of Connecticut
Expert opinion on drug safety | Year: 2017

INTRODUCTION: Dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP4) inhibitors, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) analogs and sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors are relatively new therapies for the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus. Given the high prevalence of cardiovascular complications in patients with type 2 diabetes and recent concerns questioning CV safety of newer antidiabetic medications, cardiovascular safety of these medications requires evaluation. Areas covered: Cardiovascular effects of these drug classes from preclinical and clinical data as well as non-cardiovascular safety issues are delineated from literature searches covering the last decade and up to June 2016. Major clinical trials assessing the cardiovascular safety of GLP-1 agonists (ELIXA and LEADER), DPP-4 inhibitors (SAVOR-TIMI 53, EXAMINE, and TECOS) and SGLT2 inhibitors (EMPA-REG OUTCOME) are reviewed and interpreted. Expert opinion: Based on review of the present evidence, these 3 classes of antihyperglycemic therapies have acceptably safe CV safety profiles for patients with type 2 diabetes. The latest evidence from LEADER and EMPA-REG OUTCOME trials indicate that liraglutide and empagliflozin have cardiovascular benefits that may prove to be of clinical importance in the management of type 2 DM.

HANOVER, NH - Pre-school age children who are exposed to child-targeted fast-food advertising on television are considerably more likely to consume fast-food products, according to a recent Dartmouth-led study published in the journal Public Health Nutrition. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the greatest exposure to food advertising in the US for children aged 2-11 years comes from fast-food restaurant chains. In 2009, the fast-food industry spent more than $580 million on child-targeted marketing, with television being the predominant medium. "In general, children's consumption of fast food is associated with increased intakes of calories, fat and sugar, making fast-food consumption an important risk factor for obesity and other health problems," says Madeline Dalton, PhD, lead author on the study, who is a professor of pediatrics at Dartmouth's Geisel School of Medicine and a researcher at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center. "We also know that dietary practices that are formed early in life are carried throughout adolescence and adulthood." Funded by the National Institutes of Health, the study is the first research conducted in a community setting to demonstrate a significant positive association between child-directed fast-food TV ads and increased consumption of fast food among children of pre-school age. "Most parents won't be surprised by the study's findings since they probably know this from observing their own children, and the results are also consistent with food marketing influences that have been observed in highly controlled laboratory settings," Dalton says. "I think what's significant about this study is we're using scientific methods we've developed over the past two decades to measure media and advertising exposure in an objective way, so that the findings are generalizable to real life and we're able to control for influences that we know are important--like parents' fast-food consumption and the overall amount of TV that children watch," she says. In the nine-month study, the research team recruited a total of 548 parents who had a pre-school age child (average of 4.4 years) to complete a written survey during their visits to pediatric and women, infant, and children clinics in Southern New Hampshire. Parents reported their child's viewing time, channels watched, and fast-food consumption during the past week. Their responses were combined with a list of fast-food commercials that were aired on kids' TV channels during that same period to calculate the children's exposure to child-targeted TV ads from three fast-food restaurant chains: McDonald's, Subway, and Wendy's. -- 43 percent of the preschoolers ate food from these restaurants during the past week; a similar percentage (41 percent) had been exposed to the TV ads. --Moderate or high exposure to TV ads increased the likelihood of consuming the fast food by about 30 percent. --Importantly, this association was independent of the overall number of hours of TV the children watched, the frequency with which their parents ate fast food, and other factors like socioeconomic status. --McDonald's accounted for nearly three-quarters of the TV commercials and an even greater proportion (79 percent) of the children's fast-food consumption. According to Dalton, the findings are particularly concerning because children under six years of age can't distinguish between advertisements and programs when they're watching TV--which makes them very vulnerable to persuasive messaging. "These data provide empirical evidence in support of policy recommendations to limit child-directed fast-food marketing on TV," Dalton says. Meghan Longacre, PhD, a study co-author and assistant professor of biomedical data sciences at Geisel, adds, "An important part of the take-home message for parents is that there are preschool channels that don't feature fast-food advertising, and to the extent that they can direct their child's viewing to those channels exclusively, they themselves can protect their children from that exposure." While Dalton considers the findings to be "very significant," she says more research needs to be done to inform national policy around child-targeted fast-food marketing practices. "The biggest limitation of our study is that it's cross-sectional, so we're talking about association, not causality," she explains. "The next step is a longitudinal study, which will also allow us to collect and analyze data on things like the actual food choices children make and even more precise estimates of their viewing time per channel." This research was funded by the National Institutes of Health, grant number R01HD071021. Co-authors on the study include: Linda Titus, PhD, Kristy Hendricks, PhD, Keith Drake, PhD, Lauren Cleveland, MS, from the Geisel School of Medicine, and Jennifer Harris, PhD, MBA, from the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at the University of Connecticut. Founded in 1797, the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth strives to improve the lives of the communities it serves through excellence in learning, discovery, and healing. The Geisel School of Medicine is renowned for its leadership in medical education, health care policy and delivery science, biomedical research, global health, and in creating innovations that improve lives worldwide. As one of America's leading medical schools, Dartmouth's Geisel School of Medicine is committed to training new generations of diverse leaders who will help solve our most vexing challenges in health care.

News Article | April 26, 2017

A moth that looks and acts just like a spider is so convincing that it receives elaborate courtship displays from its predator. Many prey species mimic other poisonous prey or blend into the background to escape predators. The metalmark is one of the few that mimics its predator. The impersonator’s black, beady “eyes” are actually patterns on its wings, and its “furry legs” are contorted wings with a striped pattern. This gives the impression that it is a big spider. And instead of fluttering like other moths, the metalmark makes jerky leaps like the jumping spiders it mimics. “It confuses the spider. If the spider is smaller, it even intimidates the spider”, says David Wagner, an entomologist at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, who was not involved in the study. Cannibalism is common in spiders, so smaller ones prefer to run away rather than risk being eaten. The moths also display a peacock-like behaviour. They raise their forewings and twist their hindwings to show off eyespots and stripes to maximum effect. These appear on the upper and lower surface of the wings, so the moth looks like a spider from the back as well as the front. To find out which among these strategies – the wing pattern, jerky flight or peacock posture – is most critical for the mimicry to work, Shen-Horn Yen at the National Sun Yat-sen University in Taiwan first presented a Brenthia coronigera to jumping spiders in the lab. The spiders responded by performing courtship displays, raising and waving their first pair of legs at the moth. Other moths used as a control did not elicit any such response from the spiders – they just got eaten. “The reason the spider exhibited ‘leg-waving’ behaviour to the moth is that the moth was mistaken by the spider as conspecific,” says Yen. When the researchers painted over the moth’s eyespots, the mimicry seemed to fall apart – the spiders did not perform courtship displays, and instead spent some time examining the moths, then ate them. To check the importance of the jumpy flight pattern and the peacock posture, the researchers froze some metalmarks and presented them to the spider. These frozen moths came under attack. The experiments showed that the loss of any one component made the charade much less effective. “If I had to guess, I might put the posture as the last thing to evolve… and the other two would have come first,” says Wagner. “To me, it is the icing on the cake that really sells the disguise.” Read more: Masquerading spider looks like living and dead leaves at once

News Article | April 17, 2017
Site:, a leading resource provider for higher education and career information, has released its list of Connecticut’s best colleges and universities for 2017. Of the 19 four-year schools that made the list, Yale University, Fairfield University, Quinnipiac University, University of Hartford and University of Connecticut scored highest. Of the 12 two-year schools that were also included, Capital Community College, Manchester Community College, Naugatuck Valley Community College, Three Rivers Community College and Gateway Community College were the top five schools. A full list of the 31 schools is included below. “As Connecticut’s job market fluctuates, many people consider earning a certificate or degree to help change or bolster their career,” said Wes Ricketts, senior vice president of “These Connecticut schools have proven themselves with solid educational programs, but have also taken extra steps to provide resources that translate into career success for students.” To be included on Connecticut’s “Best Colleges” list, schools must be regionally accredited, not-for-profit institutions. Each college is also scored on additional metrics such as employment resources, academic counseling, financial aid availability, annual alumni earnings 10 years after entering college, student/teacher ratios and graduation rates. Complete details on each college, their individual scores and the data and methodology used to determine the “Best Colleges in Connecticut” list, visit: The Best Four-Year Colleges in Connecticut for 2017 include: Albertus Magnus College Central Connecticut State University Connecticut College Eastern Connecticut State University Fairfield University Goodwin College Mitchell College Quinnipiac University Sacred Heart University Southern Connecticut State University Trinity College University of Bridgeport University of Connecticut University of Hartford University of New Haven University of Saint Joseph Wesleyan University Western Connecticut State University Yale University The Best Two-Year Colleges in Connecticut for 2017 include: Asnuntuck Community College Capital Community College Gateway Community College Housatonic Community College Manchester Community College Middlesex Community College Naugatuck Valley Community College Northwestern Connecticut Community College Norwalk Community College Quinebaug Valley Community College Three Rivers Community College Tunxis Community College ### About Us: was founded in 2013 to provide data and expert driven information about employment opportunities and the education needed to land the perfect career. Our materials cover a wide range of professions, industries and degree programs, and are designed for people who want to choose, change or advance their careers. We also provide helpful resources and guides that address social issues, financial aid and other special interest in higher education. Information from has proudly been featured by more than 700 educational institutions.

More than 1,200 national and international surgeons, anesthesiologists and their teams have come to UAB to learn his techniques and the way in which he engages his teams to provide efficient, high-quality and patient-centered care.  During his tenure at UAB, he developed a four-arm robotic approach to treat patients needing lung cancer excisions, removal of cancerous esophageal tumors and tumor resections within the thoracic region. His robotic techniques have reduced complications, increased survival and shortened hospital stays. In addition to his position at UAB, Cerfolio serves as the director of the American Association of Thoracic Surgery's Robotic Graham Fellowship, and has trained a large percentage of thoracic surgeons in the U.S. and abroad. "We are excited to welcome Dr. Cerfolio to lead our Clinical Thoracic Surgery Division," said Aubrey C. Galloway, MD, the Seymour Cohn Professor and chair of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery. "He has a proven track record of exceptional patient outcomes, and will strengthen our robust thoracic surgery and lung cancer programs with his extraordinary expertise in robotic thoracic surgery." According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more Americans die from lung cancer than any other type of cancer – approximately 155,000 annually.  In 2013, the most recent year for statistics, more than 212,500 individuals were diagnosed with lung cancer – almost equally divided between men and women. At Perlmutter Cancer Center, Cerfolio will lead a new multidisciplinary lung cancer center, bolstered by nationally renowned surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, radiologists, pulmonologists and other specialists. Some have long tenure at NYU Langone and others are newly-recruited clinical and investigative leaders – all committed to developing a program that rivals the very best in the country. "Lung cancer is an insidious disease that is difficult to treat, especially when it progresses to more advanced stages," said Benjamin G. Neel, MD, PhD, director of NYU Langone's Perlmutter Cancer Center.  "Dr. Cerfolio will provide a new level of excellence to our rapidly expanding lung cancer program. Patients who turn to us can rest assured they will have access to the finest clinical care, the latest treatments and the most advanced cutting-edge research." Cerfolio earned both his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Rochester where he was a First Team Academic All-American baseball player and a Rhodes Scholar Candidate. He received his first two years of post-doctoral surgical training at The University of Connecticut St. Francis Hospital. After a year of urologic surgical training at Cornell and Memorial Sloan Kettering, he completed the last two years of his general surgical residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, where he also completed a cardiothoracic surgical fellowship. In 2013, he received his MBA from the University of Tennessee. He joined UAB in 1996, where he served in numerous academic and clinical positions before being named Division Chief in Thoracic Surgery in 2002. He also serves as the chair of UAB's Business Intelligence Committee. Cerfolio has published over 150 original peer-reviewed articles, 40 book chapters, and has given over 400 lectures and presentations at major international and national scientific meetings.  He also has been an invited visiting professor at hundreds of major academic institutions in more than 22 countries. In 2014, he authored his first book, Super Performing at Work and at Home: The Athleticism of Surgery and Life, and has recently completed his second book on leadership entitled, Inspire. "I'm honored to join NYU Langone and its Perlmutter Cancer Center, and to be asked to be part of a team that brings together all elements of lung cancer care to provide the very best to our patients, many of whom are in the fight of their lives," Cerfolio says. "We plan for innovative ways to serve patients in the New York tri-state and those all over the world." This news release was issued on behalf of Newswise(TM). For more information, visit To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:

On March 13, the National Weather Service announced a blizzard as well as winter storm alert in Boston and parts of coastal Massachusetts. A day later, on March 14, the National Weather Service has sounded an alert for a severe blizzard in parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and also Vermont. the latest reports shared by the National Weather Service reveal that a low pressure system will be crossing the Midwest states, and the Ohio Valley will be colliding with another low pressure system that has developed in the southern coast of U.S. A video captured by NASA's GOES-16 satellite shows the storm and its direction. According to the forecasters, the low pressure will result in the formation of a huge nor'easter, which will originate near the coast. This in turn can lead to snowstorm originating from the Central Appalachians to New England. Residents of Southern New Jersey to the Carolinas, may experience heavy rainfall, as predicted by the forecasters. However, NASA's Aqua satellite, has managed to capture both the heat data as well as the infrared data of the storm, showing both the cloud tops and also the ground temperatures. The Aqua satellite which flew over the eastern U.S. recorded that part of Arkansas, Missouri, Michigan, Illinois, experienced temperatures equal to -63 degree Fahrenheit. However, based on the satellite's recordings, it is expected that the temperature may further drop down to 26 degrees Fahrenheit. President Donald Trump in his Twitter account, alerted the people along the east coast about the weather updates. The massive snowstorm is expected to continue till Wednesday bringing snow between 10 inches to 16 inches. A state of emergency has been declared by Mayor Bill de Blasio and also the Government Andrew M.Cuomo, alerting New Yorkers to stay inside homes. Based on the recent reports, the snow is expected to fall between 2 inches to 4 inches an hour. All the trains above the ground have been called off, with the underground trains kept open. Metro North won't be running after noon, but the Long Island Rail Road is expected to run normally. Roadways, highways have been blocked due to heavy snowfall as well as poor visibility due to the same. Commuters traveling via the Staten Island ferries need not worry, as they are expected to run normally, whereas the Seastreak and East River services have been canceled. Coming to the airways, around or more than 5,000 flights which were scheduled with the U.S. for March 14 have been canceled. Around 85 percent of the flights in three of the major New York City airports have been canceled. Many of the schools in areas like Providence, R.I., and several other public schools around Massachusetts, will remain closed on Tuesday. Several schools in ,many Connecticut cities like Hartford, New Haven, Stamford, including few of the classes at the University of Connecticut have also been canceled. © 2017 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

News Article | April 26, 2017

NEW YORK, April 26, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Dr. DonnaMaria E. Cortezzo, Attending Neonatologist and Pediatric Palliative Care Provider at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and Assistant Professor at the University of Cincinnati - Department of Pediatrics and Anesthesia has been selected to join the Physician Board at the American Health Council. She will be sharing her knowledge and expertise on Neonatology, Neonatal - Perinatal Palliative Care. and Neonatal Pain/ Sedation Management. Board Certified through the American Board of Pediatrics in Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Pediatrics, and Neonatal - Perinatal Medicine, Dr. Cortezzo utilizes her nine years of expertise in the field of Neonatology in her role as an Attending Neonatologist and Pediatric Palliative Care Provider at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and Assistant Professor at the University of Cincinnati - Department of Pediatrics and Anesthesia. In her current capacity, Dr. Cortezzo’s day-to-day responsibilities include clinical care in neonatology and pediatric palliative care and conducting research in neonatal and palliative pain care and neonatal pain management. Following graduation with a medical degree from the University of Connecticut in 2008, Dr. Cortezzo completed her residency in Pediatrics at the University of Connecticut in 2011 and her fellowship in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine in 2014. In 2015, Dr. Cortezzo completed a fellowship in Hospice and Palliative Medicine at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. Dr. Cortezzo’s scope of clinical practice includes neonatology, perinatal palliative care, neonatal palliative care, neonatal pain management, and congenital anomalies. She has authored several peer-reviewed publications on bacillus subtilis, germination, DNA damaging chemicals, antisense ribosome inhibition of gene expression, barriers and facilitators to palliative care in the NICU, and experiences with end-of-life care in the NICU. Among her many accolades, Dr. Cortezzo is proud to have been published in bio-chem journals during her residency at the University of Connecticut and in pediatric journals addressing palliative care.  A recent published article titled, “End of Life Care” draws a comparison between family and provider attitudes in pediatric palliative care. She has spoken at national conferences on neonatal-perinatal palliative care and recently spoke at an ethics conference regarding ethical challenges in conducting invasive research involving the maternal-fetal dyad. Looking back, Dr. Cortezzo pursued the field of Neonatology after being drawn to the acuity, pathophysiology, procedures, and the ability to connect with families of her patients in neonatology. Seeing the need for palliative medicine in neonatology prompted her to seek out additional training and broaden her career focus. To further develop her professional development, Dr. Cortezzo maintains a membership with The American Academy of Pediatrics, The American Medical Association, and The American Board of Pediatrics. Considering the future, Dr. Cortezzo hopes to focus on further integrating palliative care in to fetal and neonatal care, improving the approach to pain and sedation management in neonates, and utilizing simulation to teach health care professionals communication skills around difficult conversations. In her free time, Dr. Cortezzo enjoys working out, listening to music, cooking, outdoor activities, and non-traditional art.

News Article | April 19, 2017

NEW YORK, April 19, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Dr. Olga V. Byalik, Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC, has been selected to join the Physician Board at the American Health Council. She will be sharing her knowledge and expertise in Gynecology. Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Byalik utilizes her sixteen years of expertise in her role as a Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC. Located in Springfield, New Jersey, Olga V. Byalik MD PC is a private practice offering gynecological services. As a Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC for over thirteen years, Dr. Byalik’s day-to-day responsibilities include seeing patients in the office and performing minor gynecological surgery. Her scope of practice includes gynecological health maintenance, evaluation of breast disorders, adolescent gynecology, contraceptive management, diagnosis evaluation and treatment of abnormal pap smears, menopause counseling and management, STI testing and treatment, and much more. Following her graduation with her medical degree from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Dr. Byalik completed a residency at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York. She is Board Certified in Obstetrics & Gynecology by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology. As a testament to her success in Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Byalik has been honored with the 2016 NJ Top Doc, 2010 Patient’s Choice, 2013 & 2014 Patient’s Choice Award, and 2016 Top 10% America’s Most Honored Professionals. Looking back, Dr. Byalik attributes her success to hard work and dedication to the field of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Among her many achievements, she is proud to have opened her own practice. In her free time, she enjoys sports, reading, and traveling. Due to her international roots, Dr. Byalik is fluent in Russian and English. Considering the future, Dr. Byalik hopes for continual growth and to expand her practice.

News Article | April 19, 2017

NEW YORK, April 19, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Dr. Olga V. Byalik, Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC, has been selected to join the Physician Board at the American Health Council. She will be sharing her knowledge and expertise in Gynecology. Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Byalik utilizes her sixteen years of expertise in her role as a Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC. Located in Springfield, New Jersey, Olga V. Byalik MD PC is a private practice offering gynecological services. As a Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC for over thirteen years, Dr. Byalik’s day-to-day responsibilities include seeing patients in the office and performing minor gynecological surgery. Her scope of practice includes gynecological health maintenance, evaluation of breast disorders, adolescent gynecology, contraceptive management, diagnosis evaluation and treatment of abnormal pap smears, menopause counseling and management, STI testing and treatment, and much more. Following her graduation with her medical degree from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Dr. Byalik completed a residency at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York. She is Board Certified in Obstetrics & Gynecology by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology. As a testament to her success in Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Byalik has been honored with the 2016 NJ Top Doc, 2010 Patient’s Choice, 2013 & 2014 Patient’s Choice Award, and 2016 Top 10% America’s Most Honored Professionals. Looking back, Dr. Byalik attributes her success to hard work and dedication to the field of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Among her many achievements, she is proud to have opened her own practice. In her free time, she enjoys sports, reading, and traveling. Due to her international roots, Dr. Byalik is fluent in Russian and English. Considering the future, Dr. Byalik hopes for continual growth and to expand her practice.

News Article | April 19, 2017

NEW YORK, April 19, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Dr. Olga V. Byalik, Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC, has been selected to join the Physician Board at the American Health Council. She will be sharing her knowledge and expertise in Gynecology. Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Byalik utilizes her sixteen years of expertise in her role as a Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC. Located in Springfield, New Jersey, Olga V. Byalik MD PC is a private practice offering gynecological services. As a Physician at Olga V. Byalik MD PC for over thirteen years, Dr. Byalik’s day-to-day responsibilities include seeing patients in the office and performing minor gynecological surgery. Her scope of practice includes gynecological health maintenance, evaluation of breast disorders, adolescent gynecology, contraceptive management, diagnosis evaluation and treatment of abnormal pap smears, menopause counseling and management, STI testing and treatment, and much more. Following her graduation with her medical degree from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Dr. Byalik completed a residency at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York. She is Board Certified in Obstetrics & Gynecology by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology. As a testament to her success in Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Byalik has been honored with the 2016 NJ Top Doc, 2010 Patient’s Choice, 2013 & 2014 Patient’s Choice Award, and 2016 Top 10% America’s Most Honored Professionals. Looking back, Dr. Byalik attributes her success to hard work and dedication to the field of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Among her many achievements, she is proud to have opened her own practice. In her free time, she enjoys sports, reading, and traveling. Due to her international roots, Dr. Byalik is fluent in Russian and English. Considering the future, Dr. Byalik hopes for continual growth and to expand her practice.

News Article | May 8, 2017

PITTSBURGH--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Brian Leshko, HDR’s bridges and structures inspection program leader, has been inducted into the University of Connecticut’s Academy of Distinguished Engineers. Each year, the School of Engineering commends exceptional engineering alumni whose careers are characterized by their exemplary contributions to the engineering profession through research, practice, education, policy or service. “I am truly grateful to be honored for my contributions to the engineering profession,” Leshko said. “I am humbled to join the talented group of UConn graduates who have distinguished themselves and positively impacted society through their engineering achievements.” Leshko’s engineering career began at the United States Air Force Academy, where he received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He would later earn a master’s degree in structural engineering at UConn, and a master of civil engineering degree with an emphasis on structural dynamics from The Johns Hopkins University. Leshko’s education led to a fascination with inspection and evaluation techniques for bridges and tunnels. His professional commitment to this specialized area, as well as his diverse experience, has been instrumental in growing HDR’s bridges and structures inspection program into a national leader. What started as a cadre of six bridge engineers/inspectors has grown to a staff of more than 100 certified personnel. “It’s no surprise that Brian is receiving this well-deserved honor,” said Pat Hickox, HDR’s bridges and structures director. “It is through his commitment and dedication that we have been able to enhance our bridge and tunnel inspection services for our transportation clients. We are pleased others recognize the greatness we see each day.” Leshko shares his expertise through professional writings and presentations, and is contributing to several ongoing research projects for the Federal Highway Administration and National Cooperative Highway Research Program. He has been recognized as an Inaugural Fellow of the Structural Engineering Institute and a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers—a prestigious honor held by fewer than five percent of ASCE members. About HDR’s bridge experience We have a passion for all types of bridges, and offer every bridge-related service you can think of and a few you might not. We work on some of the largest and most complex bridge programs in the United States, including leading the Hoover Dam Bypass design team, winner of the prestigious 2012 ACEC Grand Conceptor Award; serving as lead designer for both the New NY Bridge replacing the Tappan Zee Bridge and the Pennsylvania Rapid Bridge Replacement Program public-private partnership; and co-managing the Oregon Transportation Investment Act III Bridge Delivery Program. About HDR For more than a century, HDR has partnered with clients to shape communities and push the boundaries of what’s possible. Our expertise spans 10,000 employees, in more than 225 locations around the world—and counting. Our engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services bring an impressive breadth of knowledge to every project. Our optimistic approach to finding innovative solutions defined our past and drives our future.

Wang H.-Z.,Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation | Wang H.-Z.,University of Connecticut | Dixon R.A.,Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation
Molecular Plant | Year: 2012

Secondary cell walls provide plants with rigidity and strength to support their body weight and ensure water and nutrient transport. They also provide textiles, timber, and potentially second-generation biofuels for human use. Genes responsible for synthesis of the different cell wall components, namely cellulose, hemicelluloses, and lignin, are coordinately expressed and under transcriptional regulation. In the past several years, cell wall-related NAC and MYB transcription factors have been intensively investigated in different species and shown to be master switches of secondary cell wall biosynthesis. Positive and negative regulators, which function upstream of NAC master switches, have also been identified in different plant tissues. Further elucidation of the regulatory mechanisms of cell wall synthesis will facilitate the engineering of plant feedstocks suitable for biofuel production. © 2011 The Author Published by the Molecular Plant Shanghai Editorial Office in association with Oxford University Press on behalf of CSPB and IPPE, SIBS, CAS.

Chen W.,National University of Singapore | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut | Chen X.,National University of Singapore
Advances in Optics and Photonics | Year: 2014

Information security with optical means, such as double random phase encoding, has been investigated by various researchers. It has been demonstrated that optical technology possesses several unique characteristics for securing information compared with its electronic counterpart, such as many degrees of freedom. In this paper, we present a review of optical technologies for information security. Optical security systems are reviewed, and theoretical principles and implementation examples are presented to illustrate each optical security system. In addition, advantages and potential weaknesses of each optical security system are analyzed and discussed. It is expected that this review not only will provide a clear picture about current developments in optical security systems but also may shed some light on future developments. © 2014 Optical Society of America.

Babor T.F.,University of Connecticut
Addiction | Year: 2015

Aims: To describe the penetration and expansion of the global alcohol industry into the African region, as a context for exploring the implications for public health. Methods: Source materials for this study came primarily from market research and the business press. This was supplemented by industry sources (from websites, company annual reports), World Health Organization reports and the scientific literature. Results: Drinking in Africa is characterized by high rates of abstention and a high prevalence of heavy episodic consumption among those who drink. Much of the region is currently experiencing a rapid rise in consumption. Rising populations and income and the rapid pace of urbanization make Africa very attractive to the global alcohol industry, and industry leaders have identified Africa as a key area for growth. The shift from collaboration to competition in Africa among the global alcohol companies has prompted increasing alcohol production, promotion, new product development, pricing schemes and stakeholder lobbying. Conclusions: Beer consumption has increased across most of the continent, and global brewers view themselves as legitimate players at the alcohol policy table. Weak alcohol policy environments may be compromised further in terms of public health protections by alcohol industry opposition to effective measures such as marketing regulations, availability controls and taxation. © 2014 Society for the Study of Addiction.

Van Leuven J.T.,University of Montana | Meister R.C.,University of Connecticut | Simon C.,University of Connecticut | McCutcheon J.P.,University of Toronto
Cell | Year: 2014

Mutualisms that become evolutionarily stable give rise to organismal interdependencies. Some insects have developed intracellular associations with communities of bacteria, where the interdependencies are manifest in patterns of complementary gene loss and retention among members of the symbiosis. Here, using comparative genomics and microscopy, we show that a three-member symbiotic community has become a four-way assemblage through a novel bacterial lineage-splitting event. In some but not all cicada species of the genus Tettigades, the endosymbiont Candidatus Hodgkinia cicadicola has split into two new cytologically distinct but metabolically interdependent species. Although these new bacterial genomes are partitioned into discrete cell types, the intergenome patterns of gene loss and retention are almost perfectly complementary. These results defy easy classification: they show genomic patterns consistent with those observed after both speciation and whole-genome duplication. We suggest that our results highlight the potential power of nonadaptive forces in shaping organismal complexity. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: NMP-2008-2.6-3 | Award Amount: 1.23M | Year: 2009

The stability of thin films in contact with different materials is a critical issue for a wide range of modern devices, including high-k films in the microelectronics industry, metal electrodes for fuel cells, and nanometer sized particles on oxides for catalysis. Some groups are working on thermodynamic analysis of thin film stability, who correlate relative interface energies with dopant adsorption. While this provides important thermodynamic parameters which can be used to evaluate the stability of thin films, information on the detailed atomistic structure and chemistry of the same interfaces needs to be correlated with the thermodynamic approach. Other groups use advanced characterization approaches to determine local atomistic structure and chemistry, and theoretical groups explore interface structure and energy through computational methods. It is the goal of this project to bridge between these working groups. This project will establish an environment to promote communication and collaboration between groups using thermodynamic approaches with groups studying the atomistic structure of interfaces, since bridging this particular scientific gap has the potential to result in new design criteria for advanced material systems. The project is based on a core group of European, and International partners, who have realized that such a form of communication is critical to advancing the field of interface science and interface based technology. The partners will establish structured programs for discussion via focused public workshops and summer schools, and via scientific exchange. While the core group of partners is academic, European industry will be involved in the structured discussions. The expected impact from this four-year project is methods to correlate between thermodynamic analyses of interfaces with atomistic structure. This will provide new approaches to understanding interface stability, adhesion and interface dependent functional properties.

Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 100.00K | Year: 2010

To shrink the size and weight of pulsed power systems used by various military systems, the Air Force seeks to increase the energy density of their capacitors. Polymers/ceramics nanocomposites are promising materials for such capacitors. They combine the high dielectric constant of the ceramic and the high breakdown strength and processability of polymers. In collaboration with the University of Connecticut, Lynntech will develop ferroelectric polymers by mixing ferroelectric materials into commonly used capacitor polymers. Density Functional Theory (DFT) method will be used to design materials and complemented with materials synthesis that will provide the experimental evidence of feasibility. BENEFIT: The significant market opportunities arise from the dual-use applications for (i) military applications and (ii) private sector. The commercial market opportunity can provide with a cost-competitive device for high power microwave systems, manned and unmanned aircraft, directed energy weapons, insulation for electric machines, aircraft ignition systems, power conditioning, defibrillators, medical x-ray equipment, particle accelerators, advanced radar systems, and utility distribution substations and machining equipment and other applications. .

University of Connecticut | Date: 2016-02-18

Phosphonate and phosphinate N-methanocarba derivatives of AMP including their prodrug analogs are described. MRS2339, a 2-chloro-AMP derivative containing a (N)-methanocarba (bicyclo[3.1.0]hexane) ring system in place of ribose, activates P2X receptors, ligand-gated ion channels. Phosphonate analogues of MRS2339 were synthesized using Michaelis-Arbuzov and Wittig reactions, based on the expectation of increased half-life in vivo due to the stability of the CP bond. When administered to calsequestrin-overexpressing mice (a genetic model of heart failure) via a mini-osmotic pump (Alzet), some analogues significantly increased intact heart contractile function in vivo, as assessed by echocardiography-derived fractional shortening (FS) as compared to vehicle-infused mice. The range of carbocyclic nucleotide analogues for treatment of heart failure has been expanded.

University of Connecticut | Date: 2014-03-19

Fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) is an enzyme responsible for the degradation of oleamide (an endogenous sleep-inducing lipid) and anandamide (an endogenous ligand for cannabinoid receptors). Disclosed herein are potent inhibitors of FAAH for use for treating a disorder, selected from acute stress disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 100.00K | Year: 2013

Pressure gain combustion (PGC) offers means to a more efficient energy use in propulsion and power generation devices. Integrating PGC concepts in gas turbine engines often results in highly unsteady flow conditions at turbine inlet. Further, the backpres

News Article | August 24, 2016

A new device developed by researchers at MIT and a physician at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center could greatly improve doctors’ ability to accurately diagnose ear infections. That could drastically reduce the estimated 2 million cases per year in the United States where such infections are incorrectly diagnosed and unnecessary antibiotics are prescribed. Such overprescriptions are considered a major cause of antibiotic resistance. The new device, whose design is still being refined by the team, is expected ultimately to look and function very much like existing otoscopes, the devices most doctors currently use to peer inside the ear to look for signs of infection. But unlike these conventional devices, which use visible light and can only see a few millimeters into the tissues of the ear, the new device instead uses shortwave infrared light, which can penetrate much deeper. The findings are being reported this week in the journal PNAS, in a paper by Moungi Bawendi, the Lester Wolfe Professor of Chemistry at MIT; Jessica Carr, an MIT doctoral student; Oliver Bruns, an MIT research scientist; and Tulio Valdez, a pediatric otolaryngologist at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center  and associate professor of otolaryngology at the University of Connecticut. The one clear diagnostic sign of an infection in the ear is a buildup of fluid behind the eardrum, Carr explains. But the view through a conventional otoscope can’t penetrate deeply enough into the tissues to reveal such buildups. More expensive specialized equipment can offer more information needed for a firm diagnosis, but these tools are usually only available in the offices of specialists, who are not consulted in the vast majority of cases. “A lot of times, it’s a fifty-fifty guess as to whether there is fluid there,” Carr said. “If there’s no fluid, there’s no chance of an infection. One of the limitations of the existing technology is that you can’t see through the eardrum, so you can’t easily see the fluid. But the eardrum basically becomes transparent to our device.” Fluid within the ear, by contrast, “becomes very dark and very apparent.” While there are more advanced systems under development that do provide data on these deeper parts of the ear, Carr said, those “haven’t been widely adopted. They’re not familiar to the physicians, who have to use a whole range of technologies in their work. These are something new and unfamiliar, and some of these devices require a trained audiologist to run them.” So the MIT team worked to make the new device as familiar as possible, closely resembling the otoscopes that doctors already use. “We developed something easy to use, and that wouldn’t require much training,” she said. Studies have shown that about 8 million children each year in the U.S. are diagnosed with otitis media, the medical term for middle-ear infections, Carr said. These are especially prevalent among young children: About 80 percent of them will have at least one such diagnosis by the age of 3. But the studies show that such diagnoses are correct only 51 percent of the time — “essentially a coin toss,” Carr said. The roughly 4 million incorrect diagnoses are about evenly split between false positives and false negatives, indicating that about 2 million children every year are incorrectly thought to have such infections, and are prescribed unnecessary antibiotics. Once the presence of an infection is determined, doctors must then try to distinguish between viral and bacterial causes, something this device cannot determine, although it can provide some clues. After initial successful tests on 10 adult subjects, the team is now in the process of carrying out tests on pediatric patients to confirm the accuracy of the diagnostic results. Assuming the tests go well, the team hopes to commercialize the device. The ultimate cost, Carr says, will depend on the cost of the infrared imaging system — which is finding a variety of applications, including in the self-driving cars being developed by Google and other companies, because of its ability to see through fog and during night time. The cost of those devices, originally developed for military uses, has already fallen drastically over the last couple of years, she says, and widespread production could drop those costs rapidly. "The potential impact of this work is huge,” said Karina Cañadas, an assistant professor of pediatric otolaryngology at Baylor College of Medicine in Texas, who was not involved in this work. "Ear infections are one of the most common reasons for visits to the pediatrician, but sometimes the view of the middle ear in a wiggly irritated child is not easy, making a good exam not always possible.  With this  technology even a brief exam would be able to detect middle ear fluid more confidently.” The research was supported by the Laser Biomedical Research Center at MIT funded by the National Institutes of Health, MIT’s Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies, and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research.

News Article | February 17, 2017

The University of Connecticut has joined the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute as a partner for the purpose of sharing its revolutionary human tissue and limb regeneration technologies. The institute, which is headquartered in New Hampshire, aims to speed the growth and use of engineered human tissues and organs to meet the increasing health needs of the nation and its citizens, especially soldiers. "We need to develop 21st-century tools for engineered tissue manufacturing that will allow these innovations to be widely available, similar to how a 15th-century tool - the printing press - allowed knowledge to spread widely during the Renaissance," said the chairman of ARMI, inventor Dean Kamen. ARMI is the 12th Manufacturing USA Institute, a national network of public-private partnerships intended to nurture manufacturing innovation and accelerate commercialization. With public-private investment funding approaching nearly $300 million, ARMI brings together a consortium of nearly 100 partner organizations from across industry, government, academia, and the non-profit sector to develop next-generation manufacturing processes and technologies for cells, tissues, and organs. "We are excited to collaborate with ARMI to lend our expertise to our country and push our regenerative engineering discoveries and breakthroughs closer to the bedsides of soldiers and Americans in need of vital medical care," said Dr. Cato T. Laurencin, an internationally acclaimed surgeon-scientist who is chief executive officer of the Connecticut Institute for Clinical and Translational Science (CICATS) at UConn, and director of the Institute for Regenerative Engineering and The Raymond and Beverly Sackler Center for Biomedical, Biological, Physical, and Engineering Sciences at UConn Health. UConn is currently working toward regenerating a human knee within six years and an entire limb by 2030. Laurencin's brainchild is the HEAL Project - Hartford Engineering A Limb - which was launched in November 2015 and is the first international effort for knee and limb engineering. Laurencin, whose laboratory research successes include the growth of bone and knee ligaments, is known as a pioneer in the field of regenerative engineering and material sciences. At UConn, collaborators making the partnership with ARMI possible include innovative regenerative engineering scientist Lakshmi S. Nair, known for her research advances in growing musculoskeletal tissue at the Institute for Regenerative Engineering at UConn Health. The new ARMI initiative at UConn benefits from strong support by Dr. Bruce T. Liang, dean of the UConn School of Medicine, Kazem Kazerounian, dean of the UConn School of Engineering, and Jeff Seemann, UConn's vice president for research. "In joining ARMI, UConn will contribute to the program's mission to bring together the country's most talented researchers to accelerate the advancement of tissue bioengineering and regeneration discoveries, while helping bring these promising, much needed breakthroughs to patients in their clinical care," said Seemann.

News Article | November 16, 2016

MORRISVILLE, N.C., Nov. 16, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Novan, Inc. (“the Company” or “Novan”) (NASDAQ:NOVN) today announced preclinical data showing that the Company’s nitric oxide-releasing product candidate SB414 significantly (p<0.05) reduced composite psoriasis scores, which consist of erythema and plaque scores, and pro-inflammatory cytokines, including interleukin-17, or IL-17, in a psoriasis mouse model. “These data represent a significant advancement of Novan’s platform, not only for the treatment of psoriasis, but also for the treatment of several other inflammatory skin diseases,” said Nathan Stasko, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer of Novan. “Biologics have shown dramatic effect against psoriasis in clinical trials but carry a risk-benefit profile that has reserved their use for patients with moderate-to-severe disease, or approximately 20% of the total psoriasis patient population.1 The newer biologics that target IL-17, such as secukinumab and ixekizumab, have dramatically elevated the field’s understanding of the disease pathology and clinical outcomes for patients. We believe that a topical treatment utilizing Novan’s nitric oxide-releasing technology may be able to disrupt the propagation of IL-17 locally in the skin and deliver clinical benefit without the systemic exposure and side effects of biologics. This is an exciting opportunity, and as a result we plan to accelerate clinical development of SB414.” According to a recent, peer-reviewed article in the British Journal of Dermatology, IL-17 is known to be or is likely to be related to the mechanism and severity of a number of inflammatory skin disorders, including psoriasis, acne, atopic dermatitis, vitiligo and alopecia areata.2 “The evidence of clinical trials to date has shown a clear link between IL-17 inhibition and improved clinical outcomes for patients with psoriasis,” said Dr. Bruce Strober, board-certified dermatologist, professor of dermatology, department chair and director of clinical trials at the University of Connecticut. “The broader connection of IL-17 to multiple inflammatory skin disorders would seem to suggest a novel approach for clinical developers and new hope for patients suffering from these diseases.” Based on the data generated in this preclinical in vivo study, Novan expects to initiate clinical development with a Phase 2 proof-of-concept trial of SB414 as a topical treatment for psoriasis in the second quarter of 2017. Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease that affects approximately 7.5 million people in the United States.1 The disease is characterized by an errant immune-system response that drives inflammation and hyperkeratosis, or thickening of the skin caused by rapid turnover of skin cells. This typically results in patches of plaques, or thick, red raised skin with silvery-white scales.1,3 Psoriasis can cause tremendous discomfort and can interfere with normal daily activities.3 It has also been associated with increased incidence of a number of other diseases1 as well as significant psychological and emotional effect, including social isolation, depression and suicide.1,3 In fact, as many as 50% of psoriasis patients may experience depression.1 There is no cure for psoriasis.4 The healthcare market has seen an increase in the introduction of systemic therapies, including biologics, to treat patients with higher disease burden, but all of the current systemic therapies are indicated only for patients with moderate-to-severe disease. For the approximately 80% of patients with mild-to-moderate psoriasis, prescription treatment options include topical corticosteroids, retinoids and vitamin D .1,3 None of the currently approved therapies are without side effects, and none are well-suited for chronic use.3,4 Novan, Inc. is a late-stage pharmaceutical company focused on redefining the standard of care in dermatology through the development and commercialization of innovative therapies using the Company’s nitric oxide-releasing platform. Nitric oxide plays a vital role in the natural immune system response against microbial pathogens and is a critical regulator of inflammation. Our ability to harness nitric oxide and its multiple mechanisms of action has enabled us to create a platform with the potential to generate differentiated, first-in-class product candidates. We are rapidly advancing programs in five dermatological conditions with significant unmet medical need. We believe that our ability to conveniently deploy nitric oxide on demand in topical formulations allows us the potential to significantly improve patient outcomes in a variety of skin diseases and positions us to be a commercially successful leader in the dermatology market. For more information, visit the Company’s website at This press release contains forward-looking statements including, but not limited to, statements related to pharmaceutical development of nitric oxide-releasing product candidates and future prospects. Forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from our expectations, including, but not limited to, uncertainties and risks in the clinical development process, including, among others, length, expense, ability to enroll patients, reliance on third parties, and that results of earlier research and preclinical or clinical trials may not be predictive of results, conclusions or interpretations of later research or trials; whether we will be able to obtain additional funding when needed; and other risks and uncertainties described in our prospectus dated September 20, 2016, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) and in any subsequent filings with the SEC. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this press release, and Novan disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of such statements, except as may be required by law. 1 American Academy of Dermatology. "Psoriasis." (Nov. 15, 2016). 2 Speeckaert R, Lambert J, Grine L, Van Gele M, De Schepper S, van Geel N. The many faces of interleukin-17 in inflammatory skin diseases. Br J Dermatol. 2016 Nov;175(5):892-901. 3 National Institutes of Health. “Questions and Answers about Psoriasis.” (Nov. 15, 2016). 4 Vaidya T, Feldman SR, Kirk J. Patient-centered approach to biologics in the treatment of psoriasis. Journal of Nature and Science. 2015 Mar;1(3):e53.

News Article | February 28, 2017

DENVER--(BUSINESS WIRE)--David Litoff, M.D., a fellowship-trained corneal specialist and cataract and refractive surgeon, has joined ICON Eyecare as Chief Medical Officer for the company and medical director for the Front Range of Colorado. Dr. Litoff joined ICON Eyecare after almost 20 years with Kaiser Permanente, where he carried various positions including most recently Medical Director for Surgical Care Delivery. Dr. Litoff will ensure surgical excellence and outcomes in his role, in addition to performing cataract surgery, refractive surgery, and corneal care for patients. He has performed over 10,000 cataract surgeries during his career. “ I am thrilled to join ICON Eyecare as Chief Medical Officer to promote the highest quality eye care to patients,” said Dr. Litoff. “ I am excited to lead clinical innovations and create synergies between providers to enhance ICON’s prominence while continuing to build a national center of eye care excellence.” Dr. Litoff earned his medical degree from University of Connecticut School of Medicine, and completed his internship in Internal Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital. His ophthalmology residency was at Albany Medical Center Hospital in NY, before completing a fellowship in Cornea and External Disease at University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics. Dr. Litoff has participated in extensive leadership training during his career, most notably the Executive leadership Program at Harvard University. He is a Diplomate with the American Board of Ophthalmology and National Board of Medical Examiners, and is a member of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery. He has also held an Associate Clinical Professor position at University of Colorado in Ophthalmology, and is on the volunteer faculty for Denver Health. For more information, please visit, or call 720-524-1001. ICON Eyecare is a leading surgical and medical eye care provider based out of Denver, CO. Since 1999, ICON has been building a Center of Ophthalmology Excellence empowered by an expert team of board certified physician specialists, the most advanced laser technology and a culture of quality and extraordinary patient care. In coordination with referring optometrists and physicians, ICON Eyecare specializes in treating patients with cataracts, advanced forms of glaucoma and other age and disease related conditions, while providing innovative options for patients seeking LASIK and cosmetic eye procedures. With 14 patient care centers located in Colorado and Texas, ICON Eyecare is expanding within the broader western U.S. region. For more information, please call (720) 524-1001, or visit

News Article | December 8, 2016

LOS ANGELES, CA, December 08, 2016-- Angela C. Howell has announced the release of " An Original Christmas ," her latest album featuring both original songs and her own unique take on several classics. The album is available on CD Baby, Spotify, Amazon and iTunes Everyone can relate to hearing the same tracks over and over again, from the day after Thanksgiving onward to Christmas morning. While most Christmas albums bring us familiar covers and the same tunes every year, "An Original Christmas" throws a curveball in the normal routine, offering a fresh, different sound filled with honest holiday cheer. It pulls from a variety of genres including jazz, pop, A/C, and country. As a composer and director, Angela's musical productions feature a theatrical component as well to tie together the upbeat tunes and catchy vocals.One of the most popular songs from the album, "Snap Me a Selfie, Santa," is a fun narrative as to how we incorporate the latest innovations into our everyday lives. It has been well received and viewed over 224,000 times on Youtube and just reached #60 on the Friday Morning Quarterback commercial charts.Artist View Blog calls her album "a gem," saying "Frosty and his magical hat haven't aged a bit, the nights are still silent and yes, all the bells in our home will be silver every year. Artists spanning the globe have created Christmas albums singing their versions of these songs. It's refreshing to find new songs to sing along to on An Original Christmas. I can see kids singing about Santa selfies for years to come!"Co-written by Howell and Bob McDonald, who was her professor and mentor at the University of Connecticut where she received an MFA in acting, "Snap Me a Selfie, Santa" was completed with major contributions from musicians Scott Hopkins, Eric Anthony and Chris McBurney as well as noted recording engineers Dave Darlington, John Kilgore, and Danny Madden. Viewers young and old love the joyful melody (sung by 10-year-old Madison White) that seamlessly connects modern technology with Santa.Angela just wrapped up two amazing concerts in Connecticut this month. Fans have one more chance to see Angela live this winter:Sunday, December 11th at 3:00pm** Angela is the Featured Artist **Cady's Roadhouse2168 Putnam Pike, Chepachet, RI 02814(401) 568-4102Angela C. Howell is an actress and singer-songwriter who has sung all over the United States and most of Europe, performing as a vocalist with many varied groups. One of her most notable performances was singing for all of Ryo Kawasaki's live New York jazz shows for the Grammy nominated Love Within the Universe. As a Musical Director, Angela has worked everywhere from the Yale Summer Series (for gifted youth), the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (during their stay in NYC), Westchester Broadway Dinner Theatre (on multiple productions) to North Carolina Theatre (Broadway World nomination) and Circle in the Square Theatre School. Angela has released six albums as produced by The GoodStuff Company and appears on a wealth of other international recordings as a vocalist and musician. She is thrilled to announce An Original Christmas, which features two new songs she co-wrote with Bob McDonald and seven other new original works, two of which were written by her talented father, Arthur J. Howell. Angela thoroughly enjoyed co-directing and producing the video for the single SNAP ME A SELFIE, SANTA, a new YouTube favorite.

News Article | November 4, 2016

Do you need a ride to the polls for US election day next Tuesday, November 8? Or are you unsure of where your polling location is? You're in luck—on Friday, Uber announced a partnership with Google, using big data and machine learning, that resulted in an in-app Uber feature that helps Americans find out where they need to go to vote. According to the release, it's an attempt "to help drive voter turnout." The announcement follows a recent statement by Uber, made on national voter registration day, that it would like "to encourage all riders and drivers, regardless of political party, to register to vote." The feature, which will go live on November 8, includes a notification to app users that it's election day. It offers a way for Uber-riders to find their polling location, by pushing "Find Your Polling Place." This feature uses a Google API widget, which will direct users to the correct polling location based on their address. And then, riders can request a lift to the polls with one click by clicking "Uber to Your Polling Place." If you're new to Uber, and want to sign up for an account, you can use code "VOTETODAY" for $20 off the first ride. And, if you're an organization that would like to encourage employees to vote, or a group that is trying to increase voter turnout, you can also donate rides through the UberEVENTS feature. This allows businesses to purchase rides and then distribute a code to those they want to use it. Graham Shelby, a writer in Louisville, KY, has never Ubered before. He said the initiative "looks great," and helps him "feel better about Uber as an entity." SEE: How data and machine learning are 'part of Uber's DNA' (TechRepublic) Others agree that this is an important step forward in helping provide information to voters. "I commend Uber and Google for their engagement with the electoral process," said Vincent Conitzer, professor of computer science at Duke University. "Of course, it remains important to make this information easily available elsewhere, because not everyone has access to this app. But the more ways there are to find one's polling place, the better." Susan Schneider, associate professor at the University of Connecticut, thinks it's a "wonderful example of how information processing technology can be used to improve people's lives, and empower voters who may otherwise have trouble voting. This is a close election, and every vote counts!" It should also be noted that Lyft, Uber's primary competition, has joined super PAC My Ride to Vote and Voto Latino to get more people to the polls.

Home > Press > Tomoyasu Mani Wins 2016 Blavatnik Regional Award for Young Scientists: Award recognizes his work at Brookhaven Lab to understand the physical processes occurring in organic materials used to harness solar energy Abstract: Tomoyasu Mani, former Goldhaber Fellow at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory and now an assistant professor in the University of Connecticut's Department of Chemistry, has received the 2016 Blavatnik Regional Award for Young Scientists in the chemistry category. The awards, established in 2007 by the Blavatnik Family Foundation in partnership with the New York Academy of Sciences, celebrate the innovative achievements of postdoctoral scientists 42 years of age or younger who work in New York, New Jersey, or Connecticut. Mani is being recognized for his "advances in the understanding of electron transport occurring in organic photovoltaics used in solar energy capture and conversion." "I'm very honored to be recognized by the Blavatnik Regional Award. As an early-career scientist, I appreciate the increased visibility in the field of chemistry and the larger scientific community that this award will bring me, and I look forward to continuing to make contributions to the field," said Mani. "Although younger generations of scientists may be unfamiliar with radiation chemistry or find it hard to apply to their work, my research to understand fundamental processes in organic solar cells is a good example of how radiation chemistry can provide us with valuable information that is hard or impossible to come by using other means." Mani joined the Chemistry Department at Brookhaven Lab in 2013. The following year, he was awarded the prestigious Gertrude and Maurice Goldhaber Distinguished Fellowship, which is given to exceptionally talented candidates who have a strong desire for independent research at the frontiers of their fields. He held this appointment until August 2016, when he became part of the Department of Chemistry faculty at the University of Connecticut. While at Brookhaven, Mani studied how delocalized electrons move through chains of organic molecules with alternating double and single bonds. Organic photovoltaic devices use these "conjugated" molecules to convert sunlight into electricity. While organic solar cells are more flexible and lightweight than the conventional silicon-based versions, their power-conversion efficiency has been limited. Understanding how the electrical charges generated by sunlight are separated and transported to produce a current is critical to increasing this efficiency. "The challenge is to characterize these charged species in the non-polar environments where the electricity-producing chemical reactions occur. We are trying to elucidate the basic principles that govern the nature of charges on a very fundamental level in such an environment," said Mani. To investigate the nature of charges in conjugated molecules, Mani combined chemical synthesis (to make the molecules), pulse radiolysis (to inject charges into the molecules), infrared spectroscopy (to study the atomic vibrations of these charged molecules), and theoretical analysis (to understand how the electrons move). His research demonstrated that molecular vibrations provide insights into the nature of charged species that can help scientists design better molecules and materials for harnessing and storing solar energy. "For someone only a few years out of graduate school, Tomo has made impressive accomplishments," said John Miller, leader of Brookhaven's Electron- and Photo-Induced Processes Group and Mani's former advisor. "He came up with several innovative ideas and designed and carried out experiments to test these ideas, often using sophisticated equipment such as accelerators and performing complex theoretical computations. Creativity, initiative, and enthusiasm are important characteristics of a young scientist, and Tomo has them all." A distinguished jury of senior scientists and engineers selected Mani from among 125 nominations submitted by 24 academic and research institutions in the New York tri-state area. One winner and two finalists were selected in each of the three award categories: life sciences, physical sciences and engineering, and chemistry. Winners each receive $30,000; finalists receive $10,000. "Tomo asked important science questions and was creative in designing new molecules to test his ideas, adept in chemical synthesis, astute in using the unique capabilities of the division's Accelerator Center for Energy Research, and insightful in his collaborations to understand how his results could give new meaning to molecular charge dynamics," said Alex Harris, chair of the Chemistry Division at Brookhaven. "We expect more great work will come from him, and we look forward to continuing our collaboration with him while he is at the University of Connecticut." This fall, Mani is teaching a course on advanced physical chemistry and leading a new research group that seeks to understand how to control electronic excited states, charge and energy transfer reactions, and spin dynamics in molecules and molecular assemblies. For his research, he continues to combine various approaches, including chemical synthesis, photo- and radiation-chemistry experimental techniques, and theoretical and computational analysis. Part of his computational work will involve the use of the computer cluster at the Center for Functional Nanomaterials, a DOE Office of Science User Facility at Brookhaven Lab. Mani will be back at Brookhaven from October 10 through 14 to discuss his research at the 2016 International Conference on Ionizing Processes. Mani regularly presents his work at conferences and is invited to talk at institutes throughout the United States and abroad. For the past five years, he has been mentoring undergraduate and graduate students. His professional memberships include the American Chemical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Japanese Photochemistry Association. He earned a BS in biochemistry from the University of Texas at Dallas in 2009 and a PhD in biochemistry and molecular biophysics at the University of Pennsylvania in 2013. Mani, the other two regional award winners, and the six regional finalists will be honored at a ceremony during the New York Academy of Sciences Annual Gala on November 7, 2016 in New York City. About Brookhaven National Laboratory. Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit 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 28, 2017
Site:, a leading career and education website focused on graduate programs in accounting and finance, has released its ranking of the Top Online Master’s in Accounting Programs. To be considered for the list, schools with an online master’s in accounting program were checked for not-for-profit status and accreditation from one of the six regional accreditation agencies in the US recognized by the US Department of Education. The online degrees from the schools on the list are also the same degrees granted to traditional, on-campus students. The rankings were based on factors measuring academic quality, student experience, and graduate success. The ranking uses a unique methodology that considers such factors as the average tuition cost per online credit hour; program accreditation by the AACSB, ACBSP, or IACBE; the average mid-career pay of alumni; and school rankings according to US News & World Report in the regional, national, and online categories. Rob Voce, founder of, said about the list: “Enrollment in online degree programs is increasing and schools are responding by offering more distance education programs at the graduate level - which can be particularly convenient for those who are already working full-time. Our ranking is designed to help these prospective students learn about and compare first-rate online master’s in accounting programs that offer long-term value.” Overall, 37 schools with online master’s in accounting programs satisfied the inclusion requirements and ranked on this list. Auburn University, in Auburn, Alabama, captured the top spot on the list, followed by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the second spot. As well as providing schools’ results on ranking factors, the Top Online Master’s in Accounting Programs list includes detailed information on schools’ admissions statistics and requirements as well as tuition comparisons. For the top-ranking schools the list also provides: The top schools on this year’s list are: 1. Auburn University Raymond J. Harbert College of Business (Auburn, AL) 2. University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School (Chapel Hill, NC) 3. University of Connecticut School of Business (Storrs, CT) 4. University of Massachusetts Amherst Isenberg School of Management (Amherst, MA) 5. Pennsylvania State University World Campus (State College, PA) 6. University of Southern California Marshall School of Business (Los Angeles, CA) 7. Emporia State University School of Business (Emporia, KS) 8. Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey Business School (New Brunswick, NJ) 9. Colorado State University College of Business (Fort Collins, CO) 10. University of Alabama at Birmingham Collat School of Business (Birmingham, AL) 11. University of Texas at Dallas Naveen Jindal School of Business (Richardson, TX) 12. St. John’s University Peter J. Tobin College of Business (Jamaica, NY) 13. Georgia Southern University College of Business Administration (Statesboro, GA) 14. Northeastern University D’Amore-McKim School of Business (Boston, MA) 15. DePaul University Kellstadt Graduate School of Business (Chicago, IL) 16. Golden Gate University Edward S. Ageno School of Business (San Francisco, CA) 17. Southern New Hampshire University College of Online and Continuing Education (Hooksett, NH) 18. California State University, Sacramento College of Business Administration (Sacramento, CA) 19. University of Scranton Kania School of Management (Scranton, PA) 20. Syracuse University Martin J. Whitman School of Management (Syracuse, NY) 21. University of Hartford Barney School of Business (West Hartford, CT) 22. University of Miami School of Business Administration (Coral Gables, FL) 23. George Mason University School of Business (Fairfax, VA) 24. University of South Dakota Beacom School of Business (Vermillion, SD) 25. Florida Atlantic University College of Business (Boca Raton, FL) 26. Stetson University M.E. Rinker Sr. Institute of Tax and Accountancy (DeLand, FL) 27. Rider University College of Business Administration (Lawrenceville, NJ) 28. New England College School of Graduate and Professional Studies (Henniker, NH) 29. Western Governors University (Salt Lake City, UT) 30. Indiana Wesleyan University DeVoe School of Business (Marion, IN) 31. Plymouth State University College of Business Administration (Plymouth, NH) 32. Bellevue University College of Business (Bellevue, NE) 33. Loyola University Chicago Quinlan School of Business (Chicago, IL) 34. Franklin University Ross College of Business (Columbus, OH) 35. Nova Southeastern University Huizenga College of Business (Fort Lauderdale, FL) 36. Saint Mary’s University Graduate School of Business and Technology (Winona, MN) 37. Baypath University School of Science & Management (Longmeadow, MA) *See the full rankings and program details here: About is a free online resource focused on providing accurate and up-to-date information on degrees, programs, and schools for prospective master’s in accounting students. The site also provides additional resources such as career outlooks, graduate student guides, scholarships, and more.’s goal is to be best in class.

News Article | November 21, 2016

Dr. Gregory Toback recently had the honor of speaking on dental implants and periodontology at the 102nd annual meeting held by the American Academy of Periodontology. As a trusted periodontist in New London, CT, Dr. Toback had the pleasure of lecturing alongside other distinguished professionals in the field of periodontics. The meeting attracted more than 2,000 dental professionals from around the world. This is the second occasion that the American Academy of Periodontology has asked Dr. Toback to speak at its annual conference. The event is held in collaboration with the Japanese Society of Periodontology and the Japanese Academy of Clinical Periodontology. As a member and Diplomat of the American Academy of Periodontology, Dr. Toback understands the core values of this organization are to further enhance successful periodontal practices, achieve new heights in innovative research and enable clinicians to provide patients effective periodontal care. Dr. Toback and his esteemed associate, Dr. Marianne Urbanski, offer a variety of cutting-edge treatment techniques, at their practice Shoreline Periodontics and Dental Implants including laser dentistry using the LANAP® protocol and state-of-the-art dental implants. Their practice holds two locations in New London, CT and Westerly, RI. Dr. Toback recommends dental implants as an option for those missing one or several teeth as a result of periodontal disease, injuries or other causes. Implants are a preferred tooth replacement option because their natural appearance allows them to blend into an attractive and seamless smile. They are also known for their superior durability and stability when compared to other tooth replacement options and are strong enough to last for many years with proper care. Patients who wish to improve their dental health and appearance by receiving dental implants or periodontal disease treatment are invited to schedule a consultation with authorities in their field, Drs. Toback and Urbanski, respected periodontists in New London, CT. New patient appointments may be arranged by calling Shoreline Periodontics and Dental Implants at 860-443-2428. Shoreline Periodontics is a periodontal practice offering personalized dental care for patients since 1998 and is located in New London, CT and Westerly, RI. Leading periodontist, Dr. Gregory A. Toback, received his B.A. from St. John’s University and his Doctorate of Dental Medicine from the University of Connecticut. He also received advanced training in periodontics and dental implants at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. Dr. Toback focuses on minimally invasive surgeries, offering the LANAP® protocol and belongs to a small group of dental professionals currently providing the Chao Pinhole Surgical Technique™ for treatment of gum recession. Dr. Marianne Urbanski has been voted one of Connecticut’s top dentists for more than seven years by Connecticut Magazine. Dr. Urbanski graduated cum laude from the College of Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts where she earned a Bachelors’ degree in Biology. She also received her Doctor of Dental Medicine degree and her Masters’ of Dental Science degree from the University of Connecticut Dental School. Dr. Urbanski prides herself on offering caring, professional care to each patient. To learn more about Shoreline Periodontics and their dental services visit their website at or call 860-443-2428 for the New London, CT location, or 401-596-0000 for the Westerly, RI office.

News Article | February 27, 2017

HARTFORD, Conn., Feb. 27, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Connecticut Technology Council (CTC) is pleased to announce the 50 women who have been selected as Women of Innovation finalists for the 2017 Women of Innovation awards program. The Women of Innovation® program seeks to celebrate and create a growing network of women in the “trenches” of STEM. Finalists are the scientists, researchers, academics, manufacturers, student leaders, drafters, entrepreneurs, and technicians who create tomorrow’s advancements through their efforts in Connecticut today. The 50 finalists will be recognized at the Women of Innovation® awards gala at the Aqua Turf Club in Plantsville on March 29 from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. A winner in each of the eight award categories will be announced live during the program. The keynote speaker at this year’s ceremony is Adda Birnir, Founder and CEO of Skillcrush, a woman-centric online learning community that helps advance digital skills and creativity, and has been featured on the BBC, Mashable, Fast Company, and Business Insider. Tickets, registration, and details are available online at the CTC website, The complete list of 2017 Women of Innovation® Finalists is posted below. “For the last twelve years, the Women of Innovation awards ceremony has honored outstanding women who have made significant professional, academic, and community achievements,” said Bruce Carlson, President and CEO of the Connecticut Technology Council. “The 2017 Women of Innovation awards dinner will continue our tradition of celebrating these women and their accomplishments, and marks our expanding program offerings to include and professional growth opportunities to all involved with Women of Innovation, a move aligned with the Connecticut Technology Council’s new strategic initiatives. These initiatives work to fill clear needs in the tech ecosystem here in the state.” The Women of Innovation® program is aligned with CTC’s Talent & Workforce strategic initiative, which is dedicated to bringing a robust tech talent pipeline to Connecticut. Diversity hiring is a significant facet of the Talent & Workforce initiative. Other initiatives include Growth & Innovation, dedicated to serving companies in the growth phase, and the IT & Infrastructure initiative, which focuses on supporting and advocating for the best in tech resources and infrastructure here in Connecticut. Women of Innovation® finalists are nominated by their peers, coworkers, and mentors, and are selected based on their professional experience, history of innovation, ability to think creatively and solve problems, and demonstration of leadership. Students are judged on inventiveness, accomplishment in science and technology, independent research, and academic achievement. This year’s 50 finalists includes researchers, educators, engineers, managers, students and entrepreneurs who work or study biotech, pharmaceuticals, software, computer hardware, advanced materials, medical devices, IT, or associated fields. High school, undergraduate and graduate students who have demonstrated extraordinary and unique achievements in their technology disciplines are also among the finalists. The winner in the Youth Innovation and Leadership category will receive a $4,000 scholarship from Medtronic, one of the program’s presenting sponsors. Women of Innovation® is presented in conjunction with the following companies: Day Pitney LLP, Medtronic Inc, and United Technologies Corporation. The program is supported by Pfizer Inc. and Pitney Bowes Inc., with contributions from Premier Limousine and Marcum LLP. For questions regarding the program or awards dinner please contact Paige Rasid at 860.289.0878 x335. Below is a list of the 2017 Women of Innovation® with their affiliated organizations and town of employment or hometown: Jennifer McFadden, Yale University, Madison Summer McGee, University of New Haven, West Haven Janice Naegele, Wesleyan University, Middletown Michelle Bellinger, Academy of Aerospace & Engineering, West Hartford Nivea Torres, Connecticut Technical High School System (CTHSS), Middletown Jun Chen, University of Connecticut, School of Engineering, Storrs Deborah Dorcemus, University of Connecticut, Danbury Erin Duffy, Yale University, West Haven Wafa Elmannai, University of Bridgeport, Bridgeport Manisha Mishra, University of Connecticut, Storrs Jessica Angier, Hybrid Intelligence, Inc., Shelton                                Jessica Bailey, Greenworks Lending, Darien Wendy Davis, GestVision, Inc., Guilford Marcia Fournier, Bioarray Genetics, Farmington Ellen Matloff, My Gene Counsel, LLC, North Haven Melissa Baran, Sikorsky Aircraft, A Lockheed Martin Company, Stratford Vicki Conant, Sikorsky Aircraft, A Lockheed Martin Company, Stratford Jennifer Graham, Sikorsky Aircraft, A Lockheed Martin Company, Stratford Karen Iannella, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Ridgefield Jacqueline Jones, PhD., Medtronic, Branford Bhagyashree Khunte, Pfizer, Inc., Groton Jeanne Larsen, UTC Aerospace Systems, Windsor Locks Ping Liu, Sikorsky Aircraft, A Lockheed Martin Company, Stratford Devu Manikantan Shila, Ph.D, United Technologies Research Center, East Hartford Jennifer McLaurin, UTC Aerospace Systems, Windsor Locks Lindsay O'Donnell, Sikorsky Aircraft, A Lockheed Martin Company, Naugatuck Kremena Simitchieva, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Ridgefield Susan Baserga, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven Jinbo Bi, University of Connecticut, Storrs Alison Gotkin, United Technologies Research Center, East Hartford Nancy Petry, UConn Health, Farmington Danyel Racenet, Medtronic, North Haven Kelly Valentine, Medtronic, North Haven Christine Wetzel, 3M, Meriden Margaret Bailey, Sonalysts, Waterford Jeanine Gouin, Milone & MacBroom, Inc., Cheshire Chun Li, Diameter Health, Farmington Mary Ellen Mateleska, Mystic Aquarium, a division of Sea Research Foundation, Mystic Feliciatas Thurmayr, MD, PhD., Quality Health Ideas, Inc., Suffield Meghan West, CNC Software Inc /Mastercam, Tolland The Connecticut Technology Council is a statewide association of technology oriented companies and institutions, providing leadership in areas of policy advocacy, community building and assistance for growing companies. Speaking for over 2,000 companies that employ some 200,000 residents, the Connecticut Technology Council seeks to provide a strong and urgent voice in support of the creation of a culture of innovation. This includes working to position Connecticut as a leader in idea creation, workforce preparation, entrepreneurial aptitude, early stage risk capital availability and providing on-going support and mentoring to high potential firms. For more information, visit

Motivation: Reticulate network is a model for displaying and quantifying the effects of complex reticulate processes on the evolutionary history of species undergoing reticulate evolution. A central computational problem on reticulate networks is: given a set of phylogenetic trees (each for some region of the genomes), reconstruct the most parsimonious reticulate network (called the minimum reticulate network) that combines the topological information contained in the given trees. This problem is well-known to be NP-hard. Thus, existing approaches for this problem either work with only two input trees or make simplifying topological assumptions. Results: We present novel results on the minimum reticulate network problem. Unlike existing approaches, we address the fully general problem: there is no restriction on the number of trees that are input, and there is no restriction on the form of the allowed reticulate network. We present lower and upper bounds on the minimum number of reticulation events in the minimum reticulate network (and infer an approximately parsimonious reticulate network). A program called PIRN implements these methods, which also outputs a graphical representation of the inferred network. Empirical results on simulated and biological data show that our methods are practical for a wide range of data. More importantly, the lower and upper bounds match for many datasets (especially when the number of trees is small or reticulation level is low), and this allows us to solve the minimum reticulate network problem exactly for these datasets. Availability: A software tool, PIRN, is available for download from the web page: Contact: Supplementary information: Supplementary data is available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author(s) 2010. Published by Oxford University Press.

Klassen J.L.,University of Connecticut
Current Opinion in Insect Science | Year: 2014

All insects host communities of microbes that interact both with the insect and each other. Secondary metabolites are understood to mediate many of these interactions, although examples having robust genetic, chemical and/or ecological evidence are relatively rare. Here, I review secondary metabolites mediating community interactions in the beewolf, entomopathogenic nematode and fungus-growing ant symbioses, using the logic of Koch's postulates to emphasize well-validated symbiotic functions mediated by these metabolites. I especially highlight how these interaction networks are structured by both ecological and evolutionary processes, and how selection acting on secondary metabolite production can be multidimensional. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Leadbeater N.E.,University of Connecticut
Chemical Communications | Year: 2014

This viewpoint will discuss the impact of the 2000 Chem. Commun. report that the palladium-catalysed Suzuki coupling can be performed quickly and easily in a room-temperature ionic liquid. This work has helped fuel what have now become whole areas of chemistry of their own: the use of ionic liquids as reaction media for catalytic transformations, and the application of palladium complexes bearing N-heterocyclic carbene (NHC) ligands in the Suzuki coupling and beyond. © The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Ren Z.,University of Connecticut | Gao P.-X.,University of Connecticut
Nanoscale | Year: 2014

Helical nanomaterials represent an emerging group of nanostructures with unique spiral geometry as well as multiple functionalities owing to their enriched physical and chemical properties. With the novel properties enabled by their nanoscale dimension and unique geometry, the helical nanostructures may open opportunities to develop our understanding of new physics, chemistry and biology, and enable new nanodevice design and fabrication. This review article presents a comprehensive and in-depth overview of the latest progress in helical nanostructures synthesis, properties and potential applications. Specific attention is concentrated on the crystal growth theory for helical nanostructures, summary of the helical nanomaterials obtained so far, and their fabrication techniques as well as typical physical properties that can be potentially utilized for various applications. © 2014 the Partner Organisations.

Sung C.-J.,University of Connecticut | Curran H.J.,National University of Ireland
Progress in Energy and Combustion Science | Year: 2014

Rapid compression machines (RCMs) are used to simulate a single compression stroke of an internal combustion engine without some of the complicated swirl bowl geometry, cycle-to-cycle variation, residual gas, and other complications associated with engine operating conditions. RCMs are primarily used to measure ignition delay times as a function of temperature, pressure, and fuel/oxygen/diluent ratio; further they can be equipped with diagnostics to determine the temperature and flow fields inside the reaction chamber and to measure the concentrations of reactant, intermediate, and product species produced during combustion. This paper first discusses the operational principles and design features of RCMs, including the use of creviced pistons, which is an important feature in order to suppress the boundary layer, preventing it from becoming entrained into the reaction chamber via a roll-up vortex. The paper then discusses methods by which experiments performed in RCMs are interpreted and simulated. Furthermore, differences in measured ignition delays from RCMs and shock tube facilities are discussed, with the apparent initial gross disagreement being explained by facility effects in both types of experiments. Finally, future directions for using RCMs in chemical kinetics studies are also discussed. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Cherman A.,University of Minnesota | Dorigoni D.,University of Cambridge | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Unsal M.,SFSU
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2014

We explain the physical role of nonperturbative saddle points of path integrals in theories without instantons, using the example of the asymptotically free two-dimensional principal chiral model (PCM). Standard topological arguments based on homotopy considerations suggest no role for nonperturbative saddles in such theories. However, the resurgence theory, which unifies perturbative and nonperturbative physics, predicts the existence of several types of nonperturbative saddles associated with features of the large-order structure of the perturbation theory. These points are illustrated in the PCM, where we find new nonperturbative "fracton" saddle point field configurations, and suggest a quantum interpretation of previously discovered "uniton" unstable classical solutions. The fractons lead to a semiclassical realization of IR renormalons in the circle-compactified theory and yield the microscopic mechanism of the mass gap of the PCM. © 2014 American Physical Society.

A multiplexed, microfluidic platform to detect reactive metabolites is described, and its performance is illustrated for compounds metabolized by oxidative and bioconjugation enzymes in multi-enzyme pathways to mimic natural human drug metabolism. The device features four 8-electrode screen printed carbon arrays coated with thin films of DNA, a ruthenium-polyvinylpyridine (RuPVP) catalyst, and multiple enzyme sources including human liver microsomes (HLM), cytochrome P450 (cyt P450) 1B1 supersomes, microsomal epoxide hydrolase (EH), human S9 liver fractions (Hs9) and N-acetyltransferase (NAT). Arrays are arranged in parallel to facilitate multiple compound screening, enabling up to 32 enzyme reactions and measurements in 20-30 min. In the first step of the assay, metabolic reactions are achieved under constant flow of oxygenated reactant solutions by electrode driven natural catalytic cycles of cyt P450s and cofactor-supported bioconjugation enzymes. Reactive metabolites formed in the enzyme reactions can react with DNA. Relative DNA damage is measured in the second assay step using square wave voltammetry (SWV) with RuPVP as catalyst. Studies were done on chemicals known to require metabolic activation to induce genotoxicity, and results reproduced known features of metabolite DNA-reactivity for the test compounds. Metabolism of benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P) by cyt P450s and epoxide hydrolase showed an enhanced relative DNA damage rate for DNA compared to cyt P450s alone. DNA damage rates for arylamines by pathways featuring both oxidative and conjugative enzymes at pH 7.4 gave better correlation with rodent genotoxicity metric TD(50). Results illustrate the broad utility of the reactive metabolite screening device.

Adamsons K.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology | Year: 2013

Objective: The present study examined predictors of relationship quality among a sample of first-time parents. Background: The transition to parenthood engenders both joys and challenges for parents and has been a focus of interest to scholars for decades. On average, couple relationship quality declines following the birth of a first child, but research has moved beyond averages and focused instead on uncovering factors that lead some couples to improve in relationship quality and others to decline. Methods: Using data collected from 29 first-time parent dyads, this short-term longitudinal study examined the ways in which similarity between mothers' and fathers' role expectations at birth, similarity of individual parents' ideal versus actual parenting responsibilities at six months, and parents' satisfaction with the division of childrearing responsibilities at six months were related to parents' reports of relationship quality at child age six months. Results: Regressions revealed that mothers' relationship quality was predicted by their satisfaction with the division of childrearing responsibilities. Partners' relationship quality was predicted by mothers and partners holding similar beliefs about the importance of partners fulfilling various roles and marginally by whether partners' ideal division of role responsibilities matched the actual division of responsibilities. Conclusion: Although limited by the small sample size, these results suggest that expectations regarding parenting role responsibilities are an area worthy of further research. Just as premarital programmes encourage couples to discuss areas of difference before marriage, prenatal couples should be encouraged to resolve differences in their expectations of one another as parents. © 2013 Copyright Society for Reproductive and Infant Psychology.

Cruz J.M.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2013

This paper develops a framework for the modeling and analysis of a complex global supply chain network with corporate social responsibility (CSR) through integrated environmental decision-making and risk management. Through a multilevel global supply chain network, we model the multi-criteria decision-making behavior of the various decision-makers (manufacturers, retailers, and consumers), which includes the maximization of profit, the minimization of emission, and the minimization of risk. We propose a network performance measure for the evaluation of global supply chain network. We measure the impact of globalization on supply chains' CSR decision-making and analyze the effects of CSR on prices, product flows, and the global supply chains efficiency. We found that a social responsible global supply chain network is more efficiency than a less responsible one. Moreover, the higher is the level of social responsibility of the network the lower is the price and therefore the higher is the demand for the product. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Amico K.R.,University of Connecticut
Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS | Year: 2012

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Remarkable advances in the use of antiretroviral medication in the prevention of HIV acquisition are receiving well deserved widespread attention. The behavioral and social-cultural factors that contextualize use of study product or preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) are comparatively poorly understood. Given that PrEP is a bio-behavioral intervention, optimizing the potential impact of PrEP on individual and public health requires a better understanding of the behavioral aspects of PrEP adherence. This review culls across available clinical trial findings to suggest a behavioral agenda for research and practice. RECENT FINDINGS: Product use differs dramatically both within and between recent PrEP trials; however, numerous issues with measuring use have emerged. Factors influencing use or adherence are not well identified and continue to focus on the individual and discrete correlates. Presently, execution and cyclical use of open-label PrEP is unknown but is under investigation in a number of demonstration and open-label projects. SUMMARY: Research to identify methods for assessing product and PrEP use, factors influencing individual and community-level PrEP uptake and use, development of comprehensive models of protection of sexual health via multiple strategies now available, and strategies to best support adherence to dosing and HIV-testing requirements are identified as critical in a behavioral research agenda. © 2012 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Lasek-Nesselquist E.,University of Connecticut
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Molecular and morphological data regarding the relationships among the three classes of Rotifera (Bdelloidea, Seisonidea, and Monogononta) and the phylum Acanthocephala are inconclusive. In particular, Bdelloidea lacks molecular-based phylogenetic appraisal. I obtained coding sequences from the mitochondrial genomes of twelve bdelloids and two monogononts to explore the molecular phylogeny of Bdelloidea and provide insight into the relationships among lineages of Syndermata (Rotifera + Acanthocephala). With additional sequences taken from previously published mitochondrial genomes, the total dataset included nine species of bdelloids, three species of monogononts, and two species of acanthocephalans. A supermatrix of these 10-12 mitochondrial proteins consistently recovered a bdelloid phylogeny that questions the validity of a generally accepted classification scheme despite different methods of inference and various parameter adjustments. Specifically, results showed that neither the family Philodinidae nor the order Philodinida are monophyletic as currently defined. The application of a similar analytical strategy to assess syndermate relationships recovered either a tree with Bdelloidea and Monogononta as sister taxa (Eurotatoria) or Bdelloidea and Acanthocephala as sister taxa (Lemniscea). Both outgroup choice and method of inference affected the topological outcome emphasizing the need for sequences from more closely related outgroups and more sophisticated methods of analysis that can account for the complexity of the data. © 2012 Erica Lasek-Nesselquist.

Cho Y.K.,University of Connecticut
ACS Chemical Neuroscience | Year: 2015

Genetically encoded tools are positioned to serve a unique and critical role in bridging the gap between the genetic identity of neurons and their functional properties. However, the use of these tools is limited by our current understanding of cell-type identity. As we make technological advances that focus on capturing functional aspects of neurons such as connectivity, activity, and metabolic states, our understanding of neuronal identity will deepen and may enable the use of genetically encoded tools for modulating disease-specific circuits for therapeutic purposes. © 2015 American Chemical Society.

Brown J.D.,University of Connecticut | O'Neill R.J.,University of Connecticut
Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics | Year: 2010

Since Darwin first noted that the process of speciation was indeed the "mystery of mysteries," scientists have tried to develop testable models for the development of reproductive incompatibilities-the first step in the formation of a new species. Early theorists proposed that chromosome rearrangements were implicated in the process of reproductive isolation; however, the chromosomal speciation model has recently been questioned. In addition, recent data from hybrid model systems indicates that simple epistatic interactions, the Dobzhansky-Muller incompatibilities, are more complex. In fact, incompatibilities are quite broad, including interactions among heterochromatin, small RNAs, and distinct, epigenetically defined genomic regions such as the centromere. In this review, we will examine both classical and current models of chromosomal speciation and describe the "evolving" theory of genetic conflict, epigenetics, and chromosomal speciation. © 2010 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Gu X.,University of Connecticut
Expert reviews in molecular medicine | Year: 2012

The liver is necessary for survival. Its strategic localisation, blood flow and prominent role in the metabolism of xenobiotics render this organ particularly susceptible to injury by chemicals to which we are ubiquitously exposed. The pathogenesis of most chemical-induced liver injuries is initiated by the metabolic conversion of chemicals into reactive intermediate species, such as electrophilic compounds or free radicals, which can potentially alter the structure and function of cellular macromolecules. Many reactive intermediate species can produce oxidative stress, which can be equally detrimental to the cell. When protective defences are overwhelmed by excess toxicant insult, the effects of reactive intermediate species lead to deregulation of cell signalling pathways and dysfunction of biomolecules, leading to failure of target organelles and eventual cell death. A myriad of genetic factors determine the susceptibility of specific individuals to chemical-induced liver injury. Environmental factors, lifestyle choices and pre-existing pathological conditions also have roles in the pathogenesis of chemical liver injury. Research aimed at elucidating the molecular mechanism of the pathogenesis of chemical-induced liver diseases is fundamental for preventing or devising new modalities of treatment for liver injury by chemicals.

Georgescu R.,University of Connecticut | Willett P.,University of Connecticut
IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing | Year: 2012

The probability hypothesis density (PHD) is a practical approximation to the full Bayesian multi-target filter. The cardinalized PHD (CPHD) filter was proposed to deal with the target death problem of the PHD filter. A multiple-model PHD exists; in this work, a multiple model version of the considerably more complex CPHD filter is derived. It is implemented using Gaussian mixtures, and a track management (for display and scoring) strategy is developed. © 2012 IEEE.

Broderick N.A.,University of Connecticut
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2016

Drosophila melanogaster lives, breeds and feeds on fermenting fruit, an environment that supports a high density, and often a diversity, of microorganisms. This association with such dense microbe-rich environments has been proposed as a reason that D. melanogaster evolved a diverse and potent antimicrobial peptide (AMP) response to microorganisms, especially to combat potential pathogens that might occupy this niche. Yet, like most animals, D. melanogaster also lives in close association with the beneficial microbes that comprise its microbiota, or microbiome, and recent studies have shown that antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) of the epithelial immune response play an important role in dictating these interactions and controlling the host response to gut microbiota. Moreover, D. melanogaster also eats microbes for food, consuming fermentative microbes of decaying plant material and their by-products as both larvae and adults. The processes of nutrient acquisition and host defence are remarkably similar and use shared functions for microbe detection and response, an observation that has led to the proposal that the digestive and immune systems have a common evolutionary origin. In this manner, D. melanogaster provides a powerful model to understand how, and whether, hosts differentiate between the microbes they encounter across this spectrum of associations. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides’. © 2016 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

Whitney M.M.,University of Connecticut
Continental Shelf Research | Year: 2010

This study quantitatively characterizes annual, interannual, and decadal variability of Middle Atlantic Bight (MAB) river discharges, MAB surface salinities, Long Island Sound (LIS) surface salinities, and LIS salinity stratification via wavelet analysis. Links among rivers, salinities, and standard climate indices are investigated through correlation analysis of the complete data records and low-pass time series (including periods greater than 1.5 years). All rivers and salinities analyzed have strong annual cycles that are distinguishable from random noise. All records have interannual power, but this variability is indistinguishable from the noise background. Some MAB rivers have significant multi-decadal power (near either 18-year or 26-year periods). Correlations are strong among MAB rivers, salinities at different shelf sections, and salinities at LIS stations. Negative correlations between MAB rivers and surface salinities account for a significant part of the observed variance: up to 29% for shelf salinities and 46% for LIS salinities. Shelf and estuary salinities are positively correlated; accounting for at most 61% of the variance. LIS salinity stratification is positively correlated with river discharge (up to 36% of the variance). Interannual variability exhibits similar statistical relationships with higher correlations. Average annual cycles indicate a 1-2-month sequential lag between peak river discharge, minimum estuary salinity, and minimum shelf salinity. Weak but significant correlations indicate a tendency for high discharge, low LIS salinity, and high LIS stratification to coincide with positive intervals of the North Atlantic Oscillation Index. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Dobrynin A.V.,University of Connecticut | Carrillo J.-M.Y.,University of Connecticut
Macromolecules | Year: 2011

Networks and gels are part of our everyday experience starting from automotive tires and rubber bands to biological tissues and cells. Biological and polymeric networks show remarkably high deformability at relatively small stresses and can sustain reversible deformations up to 10 times their initial size. A distinctive feature of these materials is highly nonlinear stress-strain curves leading to material hardening with increasing deformation. This differentiates networks and gels from conventional materials, such as metals and glasses, showing linear stress-strain relationship in the reversible deformation regime. Using theoretical analysis and molecular dynamics simulations, we propose and test a theory that describes nonlinear mechanical properties of a broad variety of biological and polymeric networks and gels by relating their macroscopic strain-hardening behavior with molecular parameters of the network strands. This theory provides a universal relationship between the strain-dependent network modulus and the network deformation and explains strain-hardening of natural rubber, synthetic polymeric networks, and biopolymer networks of actin, collagen, fibrin, vimentin, and neurofilaments. © 2010 American Chemical Society.

Carrillo J.-M.Y.,University of Connecticut | Dobrynin A.V.,University of Connecticut
Macromolecules | Year: 2011

We present results of the molecular dynamics simulations of salt solutions of polyelectrolyte chains with number of monomers N = 300. Polyelectrolyte solutions are modeled as an ensemble of bead-spring chains of charged Lennard-Jones particles with explicit counterions and salt ions. Our simulations show that in dilute and semidilute polyelectrolyte solutions the electrostatic induced chain persistence length scales with the solution ionic strength as I-1/2. This dependence of the chain persistence length is due to counterion condensation on the polymer backbone. In dilute polyelectrolyte solutions the chain size decreases with increasing the salt concentration as R ∝ I-1/5. This is in agreement with the scaling of the chain persistence length on the solution ionic strength, lp ∝ I -1/2. In semidilute solution regime at low salt concentrations the chain size decreases with increasing polymer concentration, R ∝ cp -1/4, while at high salt concentrations we observed a weaker dependence of the chain size on the solution ionic strength, R ∝ I -1/8. Our simulations also confirmed that the peak position in the polymer scattering function scales with the polymer concentration in dilute polyelectrolyte solutions as cp1/3. In semidilute polyelectrolyte solutions at low salt concentrations the location of the peak in the scattering function shifts toward the large values of q* ∝ cp1/2 while at high salt concentrations the peak location depends on the solution ionic strength as I-1/4. Analysis of the simulation data throughout the studied salt and polymer concentration ranges shows that there exist general scaling relations between multiple quantities X(I) in salt solutions and corresponding quantities X(I0) in salt-free solutions, X(I) = X(I0)(I/I0)β. The exponent β =-1/2 for chain persistence length lp, β = 1/4 for solution correlation length Ξ, and β =-1/5 and β =-1/8 for chain size R in dilute and semidilute solution regimes, respectively. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Pellowski J.A.,University of Connecticut | Kalichman S.C.,University of Connecticut
Current HIV/AIDS Reports | Year: 2012

Technology is rapidly advancing and becoming a cost effective option for intervention delivery particularly for isolated and hard to reach populations, such as people living with HIV/AIDS. A systematic review was conducted to identify recent technology based interventions for people living with HIV. The review yielded 12 studies that were grouped by the health behavior that it addressed and then the type of technology utilized. The majority of studies reviewed focused on medication adherence and used several different technologies to deliver the intervention including SMS/text messaging, cell phones and computers. This review identified several gaps in the literature particularly the lack of technology-based interventions focusing on engagement and retention to care as well as sexual risk reduction. Suggestions for future research based on these findings are provided. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Zhang Z.,University of Connecticut
IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management | Year: 2010

In recent years, social networking systems have become quite popular, and have been established for a variety of purposes. However, it is still not well understood if sense of community (SOC) contributes to an individual users continued usage of these systems. This paper presents a theoretical model combining key constructs from the SOC framework and the information systems usage/success models to evaluate social networking usage. We surveyed users from popular social networking sites to test the validity of the research model. Our results indicate that while user satisfaction is still the most salient determinant for system usage, SOC also plays a significant role in the users online social interaction process. Besides its direct influence on usage, SOC also indirectly influences usage through user satisfaction. In addition, we show that SOC is a multidimensional construct that should be measured using several components. We also demonstrate that the quality of the information contained in the communities has a significant impact on SOC, but system quality does not seem to influence it. Theoretical and practical implications of the study are discussed. © 2010 IEEE.

McElhaney J.E.,University of British Columbia | McElhaney J.E.,University of Connecticut
Ageing Research Reviews | Year: 2011

The most profound consequences of immune senescence with respect to public health are the increased susceptibility to influenza and loss of efficacy of the current split-virus influenza vaccines in older adults, which are otherwise very effective in younger populations. Influenza infection is associated with high rates of complicated illness including pneumonia, heart attacks and strokes in the 65+ population. Changes in both innate and adaptive immune function not only converge in the reduced response to vaccination and protection against influenza, but present significant challenges to new vaccine development. In older adults, the goal of vaccination is more realistically targeted to providing clinical protection against disease rather sterilizing immunity. Correlates of clinical protection may not be measured using standard techniques such as antibody titres to predict vaccine efficacy. Further, antibody responses to vaccination as a correlate of protection may fail to detect important changes in cellular immunity and enhanced vaccine-mediated protection against influenza illness in older people. This article will discuss the impact of influenza in older adults, immunologic targets for improved efficacy of the vaccines, and alternative correlates of clinical protection against influenza that are needed for more effective translation of novel vaccination strategies to improved protection against influenza in older adults. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Pomeroy R.S.,University of Connecticut
Marine Policy | Year: 2012

It is now almost universally accepted that most of the nearshore fisheries in Southeast Asia are overfished. It is also accepted that overcapacity is one of the leading causes of this overfishing. The problem of addressing overcapacity in small-scale fisheries in Southeast Asia is much more complex than that of reducing overcapacity in industrial fleets. In order to manage capacity, managers need to measure and understand how much capacity currently exists in the fishery and what is the desirable level of capacity that best meets the set of management objectives. The only feasible solution to overcapacity may be based on a coordinated and integrated approach involving a mixed strategy of resource management, resource restoration and conservation, livelihoods and economic and community development, and restructured governance arrangements. The reduction of overcapacity implies an increased focus on people-related solutions and on communities. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Patterns of aggregation of species or individuals may result from combinations of interspecific interactions such as competition, facilitation, or apparent facilitation, as well as from equivalent responses to environmental factors. Host-parasite systems are ideal for the investigation of mechanisms that structure assemblages. Interspecific aggregation is documented for multiple groups that are ectoparasitic on mammals and host-mediated apparent facilitation has been suggested to explain these aggregation patterns. To investigate the generality of this pattern and to determine likely structuring mechanisms, I analyzed species co-occurrence, correlations of abundances, and nestedness for ectoparasite assemblages from each of 11 species of Neotropical bat. Ectoparasite assemblages on four of 11 host species exhibited significant positive co-occurrence for the entire assemblage or for at least one pair of species in the assemblage; ectoparasites on two host species exhibited positive co-occurrence that approached significance. There was no evidence of negative co-occurrence. Nine species-pairs exhibited positive abundance correlations, including seven of the eight species-pairs that exhibited positive co-occurrence. No species-pair exhibited a negative correlation of abundances (i.e. density compensation). Ectoparasite assemblages from five of 11 host species exhibited nestedness, including all three assemblages that exhibited assemblage-wide positive co-occurrence. Multiple mechanisms associated with host characteristics may contribute to host aggregation in ectoparasite assemblages, including host body size, vagility, home range size, burrow or roost size and complexity, immunocompetence and social structure. In general, data in this study and elsewhere are not consistent with interspecific interactions among ectoparasites, including apparent facilitation, being primary structuring mechanisms of ectoparasite assemblages on mammalian hosts. Rather, host behavior and ecology are likely to affect the frequency of host-ectoparasite encounters and of conspecific host interactions that facilitate transfer of ectoparasites, thereby, molding patterns of ectoparasite co-occurrence, abundance and species composition on mammalian hosts. Combinations of characteristics that are primarily responsible for molding ectoparasite assemblage composition likely are host-taxon specific. © 2011 The Authors.

Nelson M.C.,University of Connecticut
Gut microbes | Year: 2012

Gastrointestinal microbiomes play important roles in the health and nutrition of animals and humans. The medicinal leech, Hirudo verbana, serves as a powerful model for the study of microbial symbioses of the gut, due to its naturally limited microbiome compared with other popular models, the ability to cultivate the most abundant microbes, and genetically manipulate one of them, Aeromonas veronii. This review covers the relevance and application of leeches in modern medicine as well as recent discoveries detailing the nature of the gut microbiome. Additionally, the dual life-style of A. veronii allows one to do direct comparisons between colonization factors for beneficial and pathogenic associations, and relevant findings are detailed with respect to their role within the host and pathogenicity to other animals.

Presley S.J.,University of Connecticut | Willig M.R.,University of Connecticut
Global Ecology and Biogeography | Year: 2010

Aim: We evaluate characteristics of species ranges (i.e. coherence, species turnover and range boundary clumping) to determine the structure of bat metacommunities and metaensembles from Caribbean islands. We evaluate the effects of endemic species on that structure, and quantify associations between island characteristics and latent environmental gradients that structure these metacommunities and metaensembles. Location: Sixty-five Caribbean islands throughout the Bahamas, Greater Antilles and Lesser Antilles. Methods: Metacommunity structure is an emergent property of a set of ecological communities at different sites defined by species distributions across geographic or environmental gradients. We analysed elements of metacommunity structure (coherence, range turnover and range boundary clumping) to determine the best-fit pattern for metacommunities from all Caribbean islands, as well as from the Bahamas, the Greater Antilles and the Lesser Antilles separately. For each island group, analyses were conducted for all bats and for each of two broadly defined guilds (i.e. carnivores and herbivores). In addition, analyses were conducted for all species and for a subset in which endemic species were removed from the fauna. Spearman rank correlations identified island characteristics (area, elevation, latitude, longitude) that were associated significantly with island scores for ordination axes based on reciprocal averaging. Results: Metacommunity structure for all bats and for carnivores was similar for each island group, with Clementsian distributions (i.e. discrete communities with groups of species replacing other groups of species along the gradient) for all islands, the Bahamas and the Lesser Antilles, but with nested distributions for the Greater Antilles. Herbivore distributions were random for the Bahamas, but were Clementsian for all other island groups. Removal of endemic species affected the best-fit model of metacommunity structure in only 3 of 12 cases. In general, ordination scores for islands were correlated with longitude or latitude, but not with island area or elevation. Main conclusions: Characteristics of bat species ranges and associated metacommunity structure were primarily dependent on the number and geographic arrangement of primary sources of colonization, and not on interspecific interactions, species-specific levels of environmental tolerance, or the physical characteristics of islands. Endemic species did not greatly affect metacommunity structure in Caribbean bats. © 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Njei B.,University of Connecticut
Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) | Year: 2013

Currently, initiation of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in most patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection is based on the CD4-positive-t-lymphocyte count. However, the point during the course of HIV infection at which ART should be initiated in patients with concurrent cryptococcal meningitis remains unclear. The aim of this systematic review was to summarise the evidence on the optimal timing of ART initiation in patients with cryptococcal meningitis for use in clinical practice and guideline development. To compare the clinical and immunologic outcomes for early initiation ART (less than four weeks after starting antifungal treatment) versus later initiation of HAART (four weeks or more after starting antifungal treatment) in HIV-positive patients with concurrent cryptococcal meningitis. We searched the following databases from January 1980 to February 2011: PubMed, EMBASE, and WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform, AEGIS database for conference abstracts, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. A total of 35 full text articles were identified and supplemented by a bibliographic search. We contacted researchers and relevant organizations and checked reference lists of all included studies. Randomized controlled trials that compared the effect of ART (consisting of three drug combinations) initiated early or delayed in HIV patients with cryptococcal meningitis. Two review authors independently assessed study eligibility, extracted data, and graded methodological quality. Data extraction and methodological quality were checked by a third author who resolved differences when these arose. Where clinically meaningful, we performed a meta-analysis of dichotomous outcomes using the relative risk (RR) and report the 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs). Two eligible randomized controlled trials were included (N = 89). In our pooled analysis, we combined the clinical data for both trials comparing early initiation ART versus delayed initiation of ART. There was no statistically significant difference in mortality (RR=1.40, 95% CI [0.42, 4.68]) in the group with early initiation of ART compared to the group with delayed initiation of ART. This systematic review shows that there is insufficient evidence in support of either early or late initiation of ART. For the moment, because of the high risk of immune reconstitution syndrome in patients with cryptococcal meningitis, we recommend that ART initiation should be delayed until there is evidence of a sustained clinical response to antifungal therapy. However, large studies with appropriate comparison groups, and adequate follow-up are warranted to provide the evidence base for effective decision making.

Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut | Tewksbury J.J.,University of Washington | Sheldon K.S.,University of Washington
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2012

Most climate change predictions omit species interactions and interspecific variation in dispersal. Here, we develop a model of multiple competing species along awarming climatic gradient that includes temperaturedependent competition, differences in niche breadth and interspecific differences in dispersal ability. Competition and dispersal differences decreased diversity and produced so-called 'no-analogue' communities, defined as a novel combination of species that does not currently co-occur. Climate change altered community richness the most when species had narrow niches, when mean community-wide dispersal rates were low and when species differed in dispersal abilities. With high interspecific dispersal variance, the best dispersers tracked climate change, out-competed slower dispersers and caused their extinction. Overall, competition slowed the advance of colonists into newly suitable habitats, creating lags in climate tracking. We predict that climate change will most threaten communities of species that have narrow niches (e.g. tropics), vary in dispersal (most communities) and compete strongly. Current forecasts probably underestimate climate change impacts on biodiversity by neglecting competition and dispersal differences. © 2011 The Royal Society.

Lasek-Nesselquist E.,University of Connecticut | Gogarten J.P.,University of Connecticut
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution | Year: 2013

Deep-level relationships within Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukarya as well as the relationships of these three domains to each other require resolution. The ribosomal machinery, universal to all cellular life, represents a protein repertoire resistant to horizontal gene transfer, which provides a largely congruent signal necessary for reconstructing a tree suitable as a backbone for life's reticulate history. Here, we generate a ribosomal tree of life from a robust taxonomic sampling of Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukarya to elucidate deep-level intra-domain and inter-domain relationships. Lack of phylogenetic information and systematic errors caused by inadequate models (that cannot account for substitution rate or compositional heterogeneities) or improper model selection compound conflicting phylogenetic signals from HGT and/or paralogy. Thus, we tested several models of varying sophistication on three different datasets, performed removal of fast-evolving or long-branched Archaea and Eukarya, and employed three different strategies to remove compositional heterogeneity to examine their effects on the topological outcome. Our results support a two-domain topology for the tree of life, where Eukarya emerges from within Archaea as sister to a Korarchaeota/Thaumarchaeota (KT) or Crenarchaeota/KT clade for all models under all or at least one of the strategies employed. Taxonomic manipulation allows single-matrix and certain mixture models to vacillate between two-domain and three-domain phylogenies. We find that models vary in their ability to resolve different areas of the tree of life, which does not necessarily correlate with model complexity. For example, both single-matrix and some mixture models recover monophyletic Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota archaeal phyla. In contrast, the most sophisticated model recovers a paraphyletic Euryarchaeota but detects two large clades that comprise the Bacteria, which were recovered separately but never together in the other models. Overall, models recovered consistent topologies despite dataset modifications due to the removal of compositional bias, which reflects either ineffective bias reduction or robust datasets that allow models to overcome reconstruction artifacts. We recommend a comparative approach for evolutionary models to identify model weaknesses as well as consensus relationships. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

Fowler C.A.,University of Connecticut
Behavioral and Brain Sciences | Year: 2013

Embedding theories of language production and comprehension in theories of action-perception is realistic and highlights that production and comprehension processes are interleaved. However, layers of internal models that repeatedly predict future linguistic actions and perceptions are implausible. I sketch an ecological alternative whereby perceiver/actors are modeled as dynamical systems coupled to one another and to the environment. Copyright © 2013 Cambridge University Press.

Ahn S.-K.,University of Connecticut | Kasi R.M.,University of Connecticut
Advanced Functional Materials | Year: 2011

We report a new strategy to achieve triple shape memory properties by using side-chain liquid crystalline (SCLC) type random terpolymer networks (XL- TP-n), where n is the length of flexible methylene spacer (n = 5, 10, and 15) to link backbone and mesogen. A lower glass transition temperature (T g = T low) and a higher liquid crystalline clearing temperature (T cl = T high) of XL-TP-n serve as molecular switches to trigger a shape memory effect (SME). Two different triple shape creation procedures (TSCPs), thermomechanical treatments to obtain temporary shapes prior to the proceeding recovery step, are used to investigate the triple shape memory behavior of XL-TP-n. The discrete T g and T cl as well as unique microphase-separated morphologies (backbone-rich and mesogen-rich domains) within smectic layers of XL-TP-n enables triple shape memory properties. Motional decoupling between backbone-rich and mesogen-rich domains is also critical to determine the resulting macroscopic shape memory properties. Our strategy for obtaining triple shape memory properties will pave the way for exploiting a broad range of SCLC polymers to develop a new class of actively moving polymers. © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

Winokur A.,University of Connecticut
Psychiatric Clinics of North America | Year: 2015

Changes in the psychiatric diagnostic guidelines with the transition from Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)-IV to DSM-V include acknowledgment that primary sleep disorders such as insomnia can occur in conjunction with medical and psychiatric disorders. This change in viewpoint regarding the definition of primary sleep disorders opens the way to the recognition that patients with psychiatric disorders demonstrate a high prevalence of sleep disturbances, with complaints of insomnia and excessive daytime sleepiness being especially commonly reported. Recent investigations have pointed to a bidirectional relationship between sleep disturbances and psychiatric disorders. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.

Cormier V.F.,University of Connecticut
Geophysical Research Letters | Year: 2015

PKIIKP waves, reflected from the underside of the inner core boundary, are very sensitive to the S velocity in the uppermost 80 km of the inner core at antipodal distances, undergoing a phase change and a factor of 4 amplification as the distance approaches 180°. Modeled PKIIKP waveforms are consistent with a near-zero shear modulus in the uppermost inner core in a 20-40 km thick patch beneath the eastern equatorial hemisphere. This bright spot of PKIIKP reflection correlates with a thin zone of low P velocity inferred from the complexity of PKIKP waveforms sampling this patch. Estimates of grain sizes from seismic attenuation, the absence of backscattered PKiKP coda in this region, and a prediction for enhanced heat flow through this patch suggest that it is a region of solidification rather than melting. © 2015 American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

Tran N.T.L.,University of Connecticut | Huang C.-H.,University of Connecticut
Biology Direct | Year: 2014

ChIP-Seq (chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing) has provided the advantage for finding motifs as ChIP-Seq experiments narrow down the motif finding to binding site locations. Recent motif finding tools facilitate the motif detection by providing user-friendly Web interface. In this work, we reviewed nine motif finding Web tools that are capable for detecting binding site motifs in ChIP-Seq data. We showed each motif finding Web tool has its own advantages for detecting motifs that other tools may not discover. We recommended the users to use multiple motif finding Web tools that implement different algorithms for obtaining significant motifs, overlapping resemble motifs, and non-overlapping motifs. Finally, we provided our suggestions for future development of motif finding Web tool that better assists researchers for finding motifs in ChIP-Seq data.This article was reviewed by Prof. Sandor Pongor, Dr. Yuriy Gusev, and Dr. Shyam Prabhakar (nominated by Prof. Limsoon Wong). © 2014 Tran and Huang licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Massively parallel transcriptome sequencing (RNA-Seq) is becoming the method of choice for studying functional effects of genetic variability and establishing causal relationships between genetic variants and disease. However, RNA-Seq poses new technical and computational challenges compared to genome sequencing. In particular, mapping transcriptome reads onto the genome is more challenging than mapping genomic reads due to splicing. Furthermore, detection and genotyping of single nucleotide variants (SNVs) requires statistical models that are robust to variability in read coverage due to unequal transcript expression levels. In this paper we present a strategy to more reliably map transcriptome reads by taking advantage of the availability of both the genome reference sequence and transcript databases such as CCDS. We also present a novel Bayesian model for SNV discovery and genotyping based on quality scores. Experimental results on RNA-Seq data generated from blood cell tissue of three Hapmap individuals show that our methods yield increased accuracy compared to several widely used methods. The open source code implementing our methods, released under the GNU General Public License, is available at

Rodriguez N.R.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Nutrition | Year: 2013

Warfighters represent a population of athletes for whom routine training and physical expectations for military operations parallel, and very often exceed, those of their civilian counterparts. Like athletes, warfighters require nutrition support to optimize physical condition to maintain training, sustain performance, speed recovery, and prevent injury and illness. Specifically, energy and protein requirements have been tailored for these populations. Like athletes, warfighters consider protein a critical component of their diet and often incorporate protein supplements into daily diet plans. This article highlights sports nutrition principles that target energy and protein needs of athletes, considers the basis of these recommendations in the context of protein supplementation, and asserts that translating these recommendations to the warfighter is appropriate and necessary. The recommended range of protein intake of 1.2-1.8 g . kg-1 . d-1 can be extended to the warfighter. Because energy balance is pivotal to optimal protein utilization, adequate energy intake or lack thereof such that a state of negative energy balance exists, should be given particular consideration for the warfighter. Routine protein supplementation is recommended to reduce protein breakdown, support protein synthesis, and promote a positive net protein balance throughout various deployment situations and when energy intake is insufficient. © 2013 American Society for Nutrition.

Jockusch E.L.,University of Connecticut | Martinez-Solano I.,University of Connecticut | Timpe E.K.,University of Connecticut
Systematic biology | Year: 2015

Species tree methods are now widely used to infer the relationships among species from multilocus data sets. Many methods have been developed, which differ in whether gene and species trees are estimated simultaneously or sequentially, and in how gene trees are used to infer the species tree. While these methods perform well on simulated data, less is known about what impacts their performance on empirical data. We used a data set including five nuclear genes and one mitochondrial gene for 22 species of Batrachoseps to compare the effects of method of analysis, within-species sampling and gene sampling on species tree inferences. For this data set, the choice of inference method had the largest effect on the species tree topology. Exclusion of individual loci had large effects in *BEAST and STEM, but not in MP-EST. Different loci carried the greatest leverage in these different methods, showing that the causes of their disproportionate effects differ. Even though substantial information was present in the nuclear loci, the mitochondrial gene dominated the *BEAST species tree. This leverage is inherent to the mtDNA locus and results from its high variation and lower assumed ploidy. This mtDNA leverage may be problematic when mtDNA has undergone introgression, as is likely in this data set. By contrast, the leverage of RAG1 in STEM analyses does not reflect properties inherent to the locus, but rather results from a gene tree that is strongly discordant with all others, and is best explained by introgression between distantly related species. Within-species sampling was also important, especially in *BEAST analyses, as shown by differences in tree topology across 100 subsampled data sets. Despite the sensitivity of the species tree methods to multiple factors, five species groups, the relationships among these, and some relationships within them, are generally consistently resolved for Batrachoseps. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press, on behalf of the Society of Systematic Biologists. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2016

Yoon has suggested that there may be problems for the nonrelativistic limit of the conformal gravity theory. Here we show that Yoon's results only hold because of the assumption that gravitational sources can be treated the same way that they are treated in standard Newton-Einstein gravity. Since such an assumption violates the theory's underlying conformal invariance, Yoon's conclusions are invalidated. © 2016 American Physical Society.

Teschke C.M.,University of Connecticut
Structure | Year: 2012

In this issue of Structure, Roy and colleagues present the structure of bacteriophage P22′s small terminase protein, providing evidence that the dsDNA is threaded through the central channel of the complex. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Anderson A.C.,University of Connecticut
ACS Chemical Biology | Year: 2012

Enzymes are often excellent drug targets. Yet drug pressure on an enzyme target often fosters the rise of cells with resistance-conferring mutations, some of which may compromise fitness and others that compensate to restore fitness. This review presents, first, a structural analysis of a diverse group of wild-type and mutant enzyme targets and, second, an in-depth analysis of five diverse targets to elucidate a broader perspective of the effects of resistance-conferring mutations on protein or organismal fitness. The structural analysis reveals that resistance-conferring mutations may introduce steric hindrance or eliminate critical interactions, as expected, but that they may also have indirect effects such as altering protein dynamics and enzyme kinetics. The structure-based development of the latest generation of inhibitors targeting HIV reverse transcriptase, P. falciparum and S. aureus dihydrofolate reductase, neuraminidase, and epithelial growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase, is highlighted to emphasize lessons that may be applied to future drug discovery to overcome mutation-induced resistance. Successful next-generation drugs tend to be more flexible and exploit a greater number of interactions mimicking those of the substrate with conserved residues. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Singer M.,University of Connecticut
Medical Anthropology Quarterly | Year: 2011

With the massive Gulf oil spill of 2010, there has been intensified concern about the impacts of industrial contamination on physical environments, human health, and social well-being. Based on ethnographic research in a primarily African American town in an area of Southern Louisiana colloquially known as the Chemical Corridor because of the large number of local chemical manufacturing plants, this article engages arguments made by Auyero and Swistun concerning the uncertainties and confusions that emerge when official or empowered pronouncements about the health impacts of living near waste-generating factories conflict with the everyday experience of perceived health-related contamination in an impoverished community. The article seeks to address gaps in our understanding of how communities conceive of environmental health risk, what their sources of information and level of knowledge about this issue are, and how they handle potential conflict between access to needed employment and the local presence of industrial polluters. © 2011 by the American Anthropological Association.

Bates L.J.,Bryant University | Santerre R.E.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Health Economics | Year: 2013

This study examines if health care costs in the United States are affected by Baumol's cost disease. It relies on an empirical test proposed by Hartwig (2008) and extended by Colombier (2010) and uses a panel data set of 50 states over the 1980-2009 period. The results suggest that health care costs grow more rapidly when economy-wide wage increases exceed productivity gains. The findings are fairly robust with respect to time- and state-fixed effects, individual state time trends, and two-stage least square estimation. Consequently, this study suggests that the U.S. health care sector suffers from Baumol's cost disease. © 2012 Elsevier B.V..

Willen S.S.,University of Connecticut
Medical Anthropology Quarterly | Year: 2011

As the notion of a "right to health" gains influence, it is increasingly deployed in ways that are diverse, contextually variable, and at times logically inconsistent. Drawing on extended fieldwork at an Israeli human rights organization that advocates for "illegal" migrants and other vulnerable groups, this article contends that medical anthropologists cannot simply rally behind this right. Instead, we must take it as an object of ethnographic analysis and explore how it is invoked, debated, and resisted in specific contexts. Critical ethnographies of right to health discourse and practice can enlighten us, and help us enlighten scholars in other fields, to the complexity, messiness, and "mushiness" (Sen 2009) of this right, especially in the context of advocacy on unauthorized im/migrants' behalf. It can also deepen understanding of the complicated and sometimes tense relationships among human rights, humanitarianism, and other contemporary idioms of social justice mobilization, especially in the health domain. © 2011 by the American Anthropological Association.

Bush A.M.,University of Connecticut | Bambach R.K.,Smithsonian Institution
Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences | Year: 2011

Since their appearance in the Neoproterozoic, marine metazoan ecosystems have increased in ecological diversity, complexity, energy use, motility, predation, infaunality, and biological disturbance. A common theme is an increase in organismal control over internal physiology and the external environment. Often, these changes have been examined in the context of discrete events (e.g., the Cambrian Explosion, Mesozoic Marine Revolution), but they may represent linked, ongoing megatrends. This review examines changes in ecological composition in the context of changes in taxonomic composition, as represented by a more detailed version of Sepkoski's evolutionary fauna analysis. Ecological change occurred during major radiations and extinctions, as well as between them. Due to its ecological selectivity, the Permian-Triassic extinction had particularly significant ecological effects on the biota. Recoveries from mass extinctions may be important episodes of ecological change. Further research could help elucidate the fundamental causes of long-term ecological change, including any role played by the environment. Copyright © 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Masterjohn C.,University of Connecticut | Bruno R.S.,University of Connecticut
Nutrition Reviews | Year: 2012

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a constellation of progressive liver disorders that are closely related to obesity, diabetes, and insulin resistance and may afflict over 70 million Americans. NAFLD may occur as relatively benign, nonprogressive liver steatosis, but in many individuals it may progress in severity to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, fibrosis, cirrhosis, and liver failure or hepatocellular carcinoma. No validated treatments currently exist for NAFLD except for weight loss, which has a poor long-term success rate. Thus, dietary strategies that prevent the development of liver steatosis or its progression to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis are critically needed. Green tea is rich in polyphenolic catechins that have hypolipidemic, thermogenic, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory activities that may mitigate the occurrence and progression of NAFLD. This review presents the experimental evidence demonstrating the hepatoprotective properties of green tea and its catechins and the proposed mechanisms by which these targeted dietary agents protect against NAFLD. © 2012 International Life Sciences Institute.

Basar G.,University of Connecticut | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Kharzeev D.E.,Brookhaven National Laboratory
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

We argue that the presence of a very strong magnetic field in the chirally broken phase induces inhomogeneous expectation values, of a spiral nature along the magnetic field axis, for the currents of charge and chirality, when there is finite baryon density or an imbalance between left and right chiralities. This "chiral magnetic spiral" is a gapless excitation transporting the currents of (i) charge (at finite chirality), and (ii) chirality (at finite baryon density) along the direction of the magnetic field. In both cases it also induces in the transverse directions oscillating currents of charge and chirality. In heavy ion collisions, the chiral magnetic spiral possibly provides contributions both to the out-of-plane and the in-plane dynamical charge fluctuations recently observed at BNL RHIC. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Dumlu C.K.,University of Connecticut | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

Particle production due to external fields (electric, chromoelectric, or gravitational) requires evolving an initial state through an interaction with a time-dependent background, with the rate being computed from a Bogoliubov transformation between the in and out vacua. When the background fields have temporal profiles with substructure, a semiclassical analysis of this problem confronts the full subtlety of the Stokes phenomenon: WKB solutions are only local, while the production rate requires global information. We give a simple quantitative explanation of the recently computed oscillatory momentum spectrum of e+e- pairs produced from vacuum subjected to a time-dependent electric field with subcycle laser pulse structure. This approach also explains naturally why for spinor and scalar QED these oscillations are out of phase. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Frank T.D.,University of Connecticut
Physics Letters, Section A: General, Atomic and Solid State Physics | Year: 2010

We formulate Markov diffusion processes for canonical-dissipative systems exhibiting Nambu mechanics. Analytical expressions for stationary canonical-dissipative distributions are obtained. Nambu-Boltzmann distributions are derived as special cases for systems without energy pumping. The Markov short-time propagator is used to derive maximum likelihood estimators for parameters of a model that describes a particular dynamic motor pattern providing haptic cues. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Finelli P.F.,University of Connecticut
Neurologist | Year: 2010

Background: Spontaneous convexity SAH in the elderly has heretofore been of uncertain origin until several recent case reports have suggested cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) as the etiology. Objective: To better appreciate the relationship of convexity SAH in the elderly to CAA. Method: The case histories and MR imaging findings of 4 patients with spontaneous convexity SAH were examined. Results: T2*-weighted imaging at the time of symptomatic SAH demonstrated features of prior lobar hemorrhage, microbleeds, and/or superficial hemosiderosis fulfilling diagnostic criteria of CAA in all patients. Conclusions: CAA may be the foremost cause of convexity SAH in the elderly. Copyright © 2010 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Dabrowski R.,University of Connecticut | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2013

We study non-self-dual classical solutions in the CPN-1 model with ZN twisted boundary conditions on the spatially compactified cylinder. These solutions have finite, and fractional, classical action and topological charge, and are "unstable" in the sense that the corresponding fluctuation operator has negative modes. We propose a physical interpretation of these solutions as saddle point configurations whose contributions to a resurgent semi-classical analysis of the quantum path integral are imaginary nonperturbative terms that must be cancelled by infrared renormalon terms generated in the perturbative sector. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Fernandez M.L.,University of Connecticut
Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care | Year: 2012

Purpose of review: The perceived notion that dietary cholesterol is associated with increased risk for coronary heart disease (CHD) has le d to dietary recommendations of no more than 300 mg/day for healthy populations in the USA. This study will review the recent evidence that challenges the current dietary restrictions regarding cholesterol while it presents some beneficial effects of eggs (an icon for dietary cholesterol) in healthy individuals. Recent findings: The European countries, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Korea and India among others do not have an upper limit for cholesterol intake in their dietary guidelines. Further, existing epidemiological data have clearly demonstrated that dietary cholesterol is not correlated with increased risk for CHD. Although numerous clinical studies have shown that dietary cholesterol challenges may increase plasma LDL cholesterol in certain individuals, who are more sensitive to dietary cholesterol (about one-quarter of the population), HDL cholesterol also rises resulting in the maintenance of the LDL/HDL cholesterol ratio, a key marker of CHD risk. Summary: The lines of evidence coming from current epidemiological studies and from clinical interventions utilizing different types of cholesterol challenges support the notion that the recommendations limiting dietary cholesterol should be reconsidered. © 2012 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Trumbo S.T.,University of Connecticut
Evolutionary Biology | Year: 2013

The Semelparity Hypothesis (Tallamy and Brown in Animal Behav 57:727-730, 1999) predicts that among insects with parental care that iteroparity will be rare. It represents two important challenges. First, life history ecologists have sometimes linked extended parental care with iteroparity, not semelparity, as part of a suite of correlated characters associated with K-selective environments. Second, behavioral ecologists have developed theories for the evolution of eusociality that rely upon a subsocial species producing multiple cohorts of offspring, a precondition for offspring allocare and/or inheritance of a social unit. Using a database of invertebrates exhibiting maternal care in Costa (The other insect societies. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 2006), the association between semelparity and maternal care was tested using a broad comparative analysis. Semelparity was found in only 24.5 % of the best-studied representative species. In addition, semelparity was more rare in species that form nests, burrows or galleries (12.1 %) than in species that guard offspring out in the open (45.0 %). Iteroparity was common both among nesting species with non-overlapping broods (serial nesting) and in species where a female produces broods of different aged offspring in the same nest (within-nest iteroparity). It is hypothesized that common factors, particularly rapid juvenile development on high quality resources, facilitated both serial nesting and parental care. Within-nest iteroparity is an essential stage in the evolution of eusociality that has often been overlooked. Recent models of sibling conflict and reproductive spacing suggest that parental care can be an indirect cause of within-nest iteroparity despite the fact that parental investment can lead directly to diminished future reproduction. The reversal of this life history correlation may occur as a result of the transition between asocial and subsocial nesting behavior; analogous reversals may be a frequent outcome of transitions between levels of social organization. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Incomplete lineage sorting can cause incongruence between the phylogenetic history of genes (the gene tree) and that of the species (the species tree), which can complicate the inference of phylogenies. In this article, I present a new coalescent-based algorithm for species tree inference with maximum likelihood. I first describe an improved method for computing the probability of a gene tree topology given a species tree, which is much faster than an existing algorithm by Degnan and Salter (2005). Based on this method, I develop a practical algorithm that takes a set of gene tree topologies and infers species trees with maximum likelihood. This algorithm searches for the best species tree by starting from initial species trees and performing heuristic search to obtain better trees with higher likelihood. This algorithm, called STELLS (which stands for Species Tree InfErence with Likelihood for Lineage Sorting), has been implemented in a program that is downloadable from the author's web page. The simulation results show that the STELLS algorithm is more accurate than an existing maximum likelihood method for many datasets, especially when there is noise in gene trees. I also show that the STELLS algorithm is efficient and can be applied to real biological datasets. © 2011 The Author. Evolution © 2011 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

Graf J.,University of Connecticut
Annual Review of Microbiology | Year: 2016

In most animals, digestive tracts harbor the greatest number of bacteria in the animal that contribute to its health: by aiding in the digestion of nutrients, provisioning essential nutrients and protecting against colonization by pathogens. Invertebrates have been used to enhance our understanding of metabolic processes and microbe-host interactions owing to experimental advantages. This review describes how advances in DNA sequencing technologies have dramatically altered how researchers investigate microbe-host interactions, including 16S rRNA gene surveys, metagenome experiments, and metatranscriptome studies. Advantages and challenges of each of these approaches are described herein. Hypotheses generated through omics studies can be directly tested using site-directed mutagenesis, and findings from transposon studies and site-directed experiments are presented. Finally, unique structural aspects of invertebrate digestive tracts that contribute to symbiont specificity are presented. The combination of omics approaches with genetics and microscopy allows researchers to move beyond correlations to identify conserved mechanisms of microbe-host interactions. Copyright © 2016 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Spatial heterogeneity in the selection imposed by different predator species could promote the adaptive diversification of local prey populations. However, high gene flow might swamp local adaptations at limited spatial scales or generalized phenotypic plasticity might evolve in place of local diversification. Spotted salamander larvae Ambystoma maculatum face strongly varying risks from gape-limited marbled salamander larvae Ambystoma opacum and gape-unconstrained diving beetle larvae Dytiscus spp. across natural landscapes. To evaluate if A. maculatum adapts to these predation risk across micro-geographic scales, I measured selection gradients in response to the two focal predators and then assayed the defensive morphologies of ten populations in a common garden experiment. I found that A. opacum induced selection on A. maculatum for larger tailfins and bodies whereas beetles induced selection for larger tail muscles and smaller bodies. In accordance with the local adaptation hypothesis, A. maculatum populations inhabiting ponds with high beetle densities grew larger tail muscles relative to other populations when raised in a common environment. However, populations exposed to strong A. opacum selection did not evolve larger tailfins as predicted. High gene flow or morphological plasticity could explain the absence of this morphological response to A. opacum. Overall, results suggest that populations can sometimes evolve adaptive traits in response to locally variable selection regimes even across the very limited distances that separate populations in this study. If prey populations often differ in their defenses against local predators, then this variation could affect the outcome of species interactions in local communities. © 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 Oikos.

Leadbeater N.E.,University of Connecticut | Bobbitt J.M.,University of Connecticut
Aldrichimica Acta | Year: 2014

The diverse synthetic applications of 4-acetamido-2,2,6,6- tetramethylpiperidine-1-oxoammonium tetrafluoroborate (4) as a versatile, user-friendly reagent are surveyed. In addition to alcohol oxidation, its use in a variety of other functional-group transformations, such as C–H bond activation and oxidative esterification, are also highlighted. © 2014 Sigma-Aldrich Co. LLC. All rights reserved.

Background The treatment of chronic hepatitis C is changing rapidly. Aim To review clinical studies of the efficacy and safety of sofosbuvir-containing regimens in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C. Methods Using PubMed and search terms 'sofosbuvir,' 'emerging HCV treatment,' and 'HCV polymerase inhibitor,' literature on the clinical development of sofosbuvir, as well as abstracts presented at the November 2013 annual meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), was reviewed. The last search was undertaken on 15 November 2014. Results In a dose of 400 mg once daily, the drug has been safe and generally well tolerated with most adverse reactions attributable to the concurrent use of ribavirin or peginterferon plus ribavirin. A high barrier to resistance has been demonstrated. In genotype 1 (G1) patients, the addition of sofosbuvir to peginterferon plus ribavirin yielded sustained virological response rates at week 12 after discontinuation of treatment (SVR12) of about 90% with slightly lower levels in G1b and in patients with cirrhosis, but with no major impact of IL28B genotype, high viral load, body mass index (BMI), alanine aminotransferase (ALT) or race/ethnicity. In genotype 2 (G2), sofosbuvir and ribavirin for 12 weeks also resulted in SVR12 of 90% or better with little effect from cirrhosis. In contrast, genotype 3 (G3) was less responsive to 12 weeks of sofosbuvir plus ribavirin, especially in the presence of cirrhosis. Conclusion The efficacy and safety of sofosbuvir-containing regimens with ribavirin alone or with peginterferon plus ribavirin signal a new era in treatment. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Li X.,University of Connecticut | Hitt L..M.,University of Pennsylvania
MIS Quarterly: Management Information Systems | Year: 2010

Consumer reviews may reflect not only perceived quality but also the difference between quality and price (perceived value). In markets where product prices change frequently, these price-influenced reviews may be biased as a signal of product quality when used by consumers possessing no knowledge of historical prices. In this paper, we develop an analytical model that examines the impact of price-influenced reviews on firm optimal pricing and consumer welfare. We quantify the price effects in consumer reviews for different formats of review systems using actual market prices and on-line consumer ratings data collected for the digital camera market. Our empirical results suggest that unidimensional ratings, commonly used in most review systems, can be substantially biased by price effects. In fact, unidimensional ratings are more closely correlated with ratings of product value than ratings of product quality. Our findings suggest the importance for firms to account for these price effects in their overall marketing strategy and suggest that review systems could better serve consumers by explicitly expanding review dimensions to separate perceived value and perceived quality.

Paap K.R.,San Francisco State University | Johnson H.A.,San Francisco State University | Sawi O.,University of Connecticut
Cortex | Year: 2015

The hypothesis that managing two languages enhances general executive functioning is examined. More than 80% of the tests for bilingual advantages conducted after 2011 yield null results and those resulting in significant bilingual advantages tend to have small sample sizes. Some published studies reporting significant bilingual advantages arguably produce no group differences if more appropriate tests of the critical interaction or more appropriate baselines are used. Some positive findings are likely to have been caused by failures to match on demographic factors and others have yielded significant differences only with a questionable use of the analysis-of-covariance to "control" for these factors. Although direct replications are under-utilized, when they are, the results of seminal studies cannot be reproduced. Furthermore, most studies testing for bilingual advantages use measures and tasks that do not have demonstrated convergent validity and any significant differences in performance may reflect task-specific mechanism and not domain-free executive functions (EF) abilities. Brain imaging studies have made only a modest contribution to evaluating the bilingual-advantage hypothesis, principally because the neural differences do not align with the behavioral differences and also because the neural measures are often ambiguous with respect to whether greater magnitudes should cause increases or decreases in performance. The cumulative effect of confirmation biases and common research practices has either created a belief in a phenomenon that does not exist or has inflated the frequency and effect size of a genuine phenomenon that is likely to emerge only infrequently and in restricted and undetermined circumstances. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Kojadinovic I.,University of Auckland | Yan J.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Statistical Software | Year: 2010

The copula-based modeling of multivariate distributions with continuous margins is presented as a succession of rank-based tests: a multivariate test of randomness followed by a test of mutual independence and a series of goodness-of-fit tests. All the tests under consideration are based on the empirical copula, which is a nonparametric rank-based estimator of the true unknown copula. The principles of the tests are recalled and their implementation in the copula R package is briefly described. Their use in the construction of a copula model from data is thoroughly illustrated on real insurance and financial data.

Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut
Science | Year: 2015

Current predictions of extinction risks from climate change vary widely depending on the specific assumptions and geographic and taxonomic focus of each study. I synthesized published studies in order to estimate a global mean extinction rate and determine which factors contribute the greatest uncertainty to climate change-induced extinction risks. Results suggest that extinction risks will accelerate with future global temperatures, threatening up to one in six species under current policies. Extinction risks were highest in South America, Australia, and New Zealand, and risks did not vary by taxonomic group. Realistic assumptions about extinction debt and dispersal capacity substantially increased extinction risks. We urgently need to adopt strategies that limit further climate change if we are to avoid an acceleration of global extinctions.

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common developmental neurobiological condition of childhood characterized by age-inappropriate degrees of hyperactivity/impulsivity and inattention to tasks requiring sustained vigilance. Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) is an externalizing behavior disorder characterized by difficulties with emotional and behavioral regulation that frequently brings the child into conflict with authority figures. In the clinical setting, ODD is the most common ADHD comorbidity. The combination portends more severe symptom severity, daily impairment, and a more at-risk prognosis than either disorder alone. We briefly review the literature on the characteristics and treatment of the ADHD and ODD child. A clinical approach to evaluation and treatment of ADHD and ODD is then presented. This approach emphasizes the importance of child and parent psychoeducation about the two disorders alone and in combination, the importance of behavioral management therapy approaches, the possible need for school and academic supports, and the decision to use evidence-based stimulant or non-stimulant ADHD medications depending on symptom severity combined with child and parental wishes and choice. © 2015, Springer International Publishing Switzerland.

Soucy S.M.,University of Connecticut | Huang J.,East Carolina University | Gogarten J.P.,University of Connecticut | Gogarten J.P.,University of Connecticut
Nature Reviews Genetics | Year: 2015

Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the sharing of genetic material between organisms that are not in a parent-offspring relationship. HGT is a widely recognized mechanism for adaptation in bacteria and archaea. Microbial antibiotic resistance and pathogenicity are often associated with HGT, but the scope of HGT extends far beyond disease-causing organisms. In this Review, we describe how HGT has shaped the web of life using examples of HGT among prokaryotes, between prokaryotes and eukaryotes, and even between multicellular eukaryotes. We discuss replacement and additive HGT, the proposed mechanisms of HGT, selective forces that influence HGT, and the evolutionary impact of HGT on ancestral populations and existing populations such as the human microbiome. © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Valiyaparambil J.V.,University of Connecticut
The International journal of oral & maxillofacial implants | Year: 2012

To examine the relationship between dental cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) gray scale values and Hounsfield units (HU), and whether the gray values of edentulous sites correlate with the subjective clinical bone quality assessed at surgery. Two radiographic phantoms containing varying concentrations of either dipotassium hydrogen phosphate or calcium hydroxyapatite (HA) were imaged using multislice CT or CBCT. Reconstructed DICOM data were analyzed to examine the relationship between CBCT gray values and HU. Presurgical CBCT scans from 52 patients who underwent implant placement in the posterior sextants were used. The gray values of the edentulous implant sites were measured and compared with the subjective bone quality assessed at surgery. There was a strong correlation between CBCT gray values and HU. CBCT gray values increased linearly with increasing calcium HA or bone equivalent density material. CBCT gray values measured at edentulous implant sites ranged from -455 to 642, with a trend of decreasing gray values with bone quality type. The median gray values for the four subjective bone types were: 362 (type 1), 214 (type 2), 76 (type 3), and -454 (type 4). CBCT gray values can be used to infer bone density and may provide a valuable aid to predict bone quality at potential implant sites.

Kohan A.B.,University of Connecticut
Current Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity | Year: 2015

Purpose of review The purpose of this article is to summarize the recent epidemiological, basic science, and pharmaceutical research linking apolipoprotein C-III (apoC-III) with the development and treatment of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Recent findings ApoC-III is an important emerging target linking hypertriglyceridemia with CVD. ApoC-III is a potent modulator of many established CVD risk factors, and is found on chylomicrons, very-low density lipoprotein, low-density lipoprotein, and high-density lipoprotein particles. Recent studies show that in humans, apoC-III levels are an independent risk factor for CVD, and its presence on lipoproteins may promote their atherogenicity. This year, two large-scale epidemiological studies have linked mutations in apoC-III with increased incidence of CVD and hypertriglyceridemia. ApoC-III raises plasma triglycerides through inhibition of lipoprotein lipase, stimulation of very-low density lipoprotein secretion, and is a novel factor in modulating intestinal triglyceride trafficking. ApoC-III also stimulates inflammatory processes in the vasculature and the pancreas. The combination of raising plasma triglycerides and independently stimulating inflammatory processes makes apoC-III a valuable target for reducing the residual CVD risk in patients already on statin therapy, or for whom triglycerides are poorly controlled. Clinical trials on apoC-III antisense oligonucleotides are in progress. Summary ApoC-III is a potent direct modulator of established CVD risk factors: plasma triglycerides and inflammation. Recent findings show that changes in apoC-III levels are directly associated with changes in cardiovascular risk and the atherogenicity of the lipoproteins on which apoC-III resides. Emerging roles of apoC-III include a role in directing the atherogenicity of high-density lipoprotein, intestinal dietary triglyceride trafficking, and modulating pancreatic β-cell survival. The combination of these roles makes apoC-III an important therapeutic target for the management and prevention of CVD. © Copyright © 2015 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.

Rico-Guevara A.,University of Connecticut | Rubega M.A.,University of Connecticut
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America | Year: 2011

Hummingbird tongues pick up a liquid, calorie-dense food that cannot be grasped, a physical challenge that has long inspired the study of nectar-transport mechanics. Existing biophysical models predict optimal hummingbird foraging on the basis of equations that assume that fluid rises through the tongue in the same way as through capillary tubes. We demonstrate that the hummingbird tongue does not function like a pair of tiny, static tubes drawing up floral nectar via capillary action. Instead, we show that the tongue tip is a dynamic liquid-trapping device that changes configuration and shape dramatically as it moves in and out of fluids. We also show that the tongue-fluid interactions are identical in both living and dead birds, demonstrating that this mechanism is a function of the tongue structure itself, and therefore highly efficient because no energy expenditure by the bird is required to drive the opening and closing of the trap. Our results rule out previous conclusions from capillarity-based models of nectar feeding and highlight the necessity of developing a new biophysical model for nectar intake in hummingbirds. Our findings have ramifications for the study of feeding mechanics in other nectarivorous birds, and for the understanding of the evolution of nectarivory in general. We propose a conceptual mechanical explanation for this unique fluid-trapping capacity, with far-reaching practical applications (e.g., biomimetics).

Alipour E.,University of Connecticut | Marko J.F.,Northwestern University
Nucleic Acids Research | Year: 2012

The long chromosomal DNAs of cells are organized into loop domains much larger in size than individual DNA-binding enzymes, presenting the question of how formation of such structures is controlled. We present a model for generation of defined chromosomal loops, based on molecular machines consisting of two coupled and oppositely directed motile elements which extrude loops from the double helix along which they translocate, while excluding one another sterically. If these machines do not dissociate from DNA (infinite processivity), a disordered, exponential steady-state distribution of small loops is obtained. However, if dissociation and rebinding of the machines occurs at a finite rate (finite processivity), the steady state qualitatively changes to a highly ordered 'stacked' configuration with suppressed fluctuations, organizing a single large, stable loop domain anchored by several machines. The size of the resulting domain can be simply regulated by boundary elements, which halt the progress of the extrusion machines. Possible realizations of these types of molecular machines are discussed, with a major focus on structural maintenance of chromosome complexes and also with discussion of type I restriction enzymes. This mechanism could explain the geometrically uniform folding of eukaryote mitotic chromosomes, through extrusion of pre-programmed loops and concomitant chromosome compaction. © 2012 The Author(s).

Hua H.,University of Arizona | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Optics Express | Year: 2014

An optical see-through head-mounted display (OST-HMD), which enables optical superposition of digital information onto the direct view of the physical world and maintains see-through vision to the real world, is a vital component in an augmented reality (AR) system. A key limitation of the state-of-the-art OST-HMD technology is the well-known accommodation-convergence mismatch problem caused by the fact that the image source in most of the existing AR displays is a 2D flat surface located at a fixed distance from the eye. In this paper, we present an innovative approach to OST-HMD designs by combining the recent advancement of freeform optical technology and microscopic integral imaging (micro-InI) method. A micro-InI unit creates a 3D image source for HMD viewing optics, instead of a typical 2D display surface, by reconstructing a miniature 3D scene from a large number of perspective images of the scene. By taking advantage of the emerging freeform optical technology, our approach will result in compact, lightweight, goggle-style AR display that is potentially less vulnerable to the accommodationconvergence discrepancy problem and visual fatigue. A proof-of-concept prototype system is demonstrated, which offers a goggle-like compact form factor, non-obstructive see-through field of view, and true 3D virtual display. © 2014 Optical Society of America.

Liu Y.,University of Connecticut | Mustain W.E.,University of Connecticut
ACS Catalysis | Year: 2011

High-surface-area tungsten carbide (WC) was synthesized via a molten solvent route and investigated as a noncarbon electrocatalyst support for nanosized Pt clusters. Pt clusters less than ∼3 nm in size with a small particle size distribution were homogeneously deposited on the WC support by galvanic displacement with Cu. The activity of supported Pt clusters for the oxygen reduction reaction in acid media was studied. It was found that the activity of the Pt clusters is enhanced on WC compared with Pt clusters supported on carbon, and the most likely cause of this enhancement is electron transfer between the catalyst and support. The electrochemical stability of both raw and platinized WC was investigated by cyclic voltammetry, and the surface composition of the support was probed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. It was found that WC is electrochemically stable at potentials less than 0.8 V vs the normal hydrogen electrode. At elevated potentials, the WC surface was oxidized to at least two different WOx species during electrochemical treatment. This transformation of the dominant surface species as well as the tungsten coordination and bonding caused the detachment of Pt clusters from the support surface, which facilitated the agglomeration of Pt clusters on the electrocatalyst support surface. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
European Physical Journal: Special Topics | Year: 2014

The prospect of next-generation ultra-high-intensity laser sources has prompted recent renewed study of nonlinear QED processes, such as the Schwinger effect, in which the instability of the QED vacuum is probed by external fields. Experimental observation of these nonlinear QED effects would provide unprecedented controlled access to non-perturbative processes in quantum field theory under extreme conditions, which is of direct interest in particle physics and astrophysical applications. I summarize important theoretical issues, both conceptual and computational, related to these nonlinear QED effects. © 2014 EDP Sciences and Springer.

Dierssen H.M.,University of Connecticut
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America | Year: 2010

Phytoplankton biomass and productivity have been continuously monitored from ocean color satellites for over a decade. Yet, the most widely used empirical approach for estimating chlorophyll a (Chl) from satellites can be in error by a factor of 5 or more. Such variability is due to differences in absorption and backscattering properties of phytoplankton and related concentrations of colored-dissolved organic matter (CDOM) and minerals. The empirical algorithms have built-in assumptions that follow the basic precept of biological oceanography - namely, oligotrophic regions with low phytoplankton biomass are populated with small phytoplankton, whereas more productive regions contain larger bloom-forming phytoplankton. With a changing world ocean, phytoplankton composition may shift in response to altered environmental forcing, and CDOM and mineral concentrations may become uncoupled from phytoplankton stocks, creating further uncertainty and error in the empirical approaches. Hence, caution is warranted when using empirically derived Chl to infer climate-related changes in ocean biology. The Southern Ocean is already experiencing climatic shifts and shows substantial errors in satellite-derived Chl for different phytoplankton assemblages. Accurate global assessments of phytoplankton will require improved technology and modeling, enhanced field observations, and ongoing validation of our "eyes in space.".

Wick J.Y.,University of Connecticut
Consultant Pharmacist | Year: 2013

After more than 50 years of experience with benzodiazepines, the American health care system has a love-hate relationship with them. In 1955, Hoffmann-La Roche chemist Leo Sternbach serendipitously identified the first benzodiazepine, chlordiazepoxide (Librium). By 1960, Hoffmann-La Roche marketed it as Librium, and it pursued molecular modifications for enhanced activity. Valium (diazepam) followed in 1963. Hoffmann-La Roche's competitors also began looking for analogues. Initially, benzodiazepines appeared to be less toxic and less likely to cause dependence than older drugs. A specific improvement was their lack of respiratory depression, a safety concern with barbiturates. Medical professionals greeted benzodiazepines enthusiastically at first, skyrocketing their popularity and patient demand. In the mid-to-late 1970s, benzodiazepines topped all "most frequently prescribed" lists. It took 15 years for researchers to associate benzodiazepines and their effect on gamma-aminobutyric acid as a mechanism of action. By the 1980s, clinicians' earlier enthusiasm and propensity to prescribe created a new concern: the specter of abuse and dependence. As information about benzodiazepines, both raising and damning, accumulated, medical leaders and legislators began to take action. The result: individual benzodiazepines and the entire class began to appear on guidelines and in legislation giving guidance on their use. Concurrently, clinicians began to raise concerns about benzodiazepine use by elderly patients, indicating that elders' lesser therapeutic response and heightened sensitivity to side effects demanded prescriber caution. The benzodiazepine story continues to evolve and includes modern-day issues and concerns beyond those ever anticipated. © 2013 American Society of Consultant Pharmacists, Inc.

Doll T.A.,University of Connecticut
Journal of the Royal Society, Interface / the Royal Society | Year: 2013

Nanoscale assemblies are a unique class of materials, which can be synthesized from inorganic, polymeric or biological building blocks. The multitude of applications of this class of materials ranges from solar and electrical to uses in food, cosmetics and medicine. In this review, we initially highlight characteristic features of polymeric nanoscale assemblies as well as those built from biological units (lipids, nucleic acids and proteins). We give special consideration to protein nanoassemblies found in nature such as ferritin protein cages, bacterial microcompartments and vaults found in eukaryotic cells and designed protein nanoassemblies, such as peptide nanofibres and peptide nanotubes. Next, we focus on biomedical applications of these nanoscale assemblies, such as cell targeting, drug delivery, bioimaging and vaccine development. In the vaccine development section, we report in more detail the use of virus-like particles and self-assembling polypeptide nanoparticles as new vaccine delivery platforms.

White C.M.,University of Connecticut
Annals of Pharmacotherapy | Year: 2014

Objective: To demonstrate that pharmacists are vital but currently underutilized direct care providers and that full provider status and inclusion into advanced multidisciplinary team models is needed. Data Sources: Literature was accessed through Ovid MEDLINE from 1990 to the present using the terms pharmacy care, pharmacist care, medication therapy management, and pharmaceutical care. Web-based searching and backward citation tracking was conducted for context and additional citations. Data Synthesis: There is strong data showing that pharmacists in patient care roles contribute to intermediate and final health outcomes improvements and cost-effectiveness. The general perception of pharmacists from prominent people in the Federal Government, some medical societies, and from physicians and nurses who work with pharmacists most closely is overwhelmingly positive. However, the penetration of pharmacists into complementary patient care roles is minimized by an antiquated reimbursement structure that needs to change. There are critical future primary care provider shortages that will be exacerbated under health care reform, and pharmacists can be a part of the solution if the reimbursement environment was altered. Conclusions: For all the data and support for expanded direct patient care pharmacist services, pharmacists are marginalized by an antiquated reimbursement structure. Pharmacists need to be granted Medicare provider status, and new models of primary care need to include pharmacists in patient care roles in order to more fully meet the needs of patients. © The Author(s) 2013.

Akkermans E.,Technion - Israel Institute of Technology | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2012

Sequences of alternating-sign time-dependent electric field pulses lead to coherent interference effects in Schwinger vacuum pair production, producing a Ramsey interferometer, an all-optical time-domain realization of the multiple-slit interference effect, directly from the quantum vacuum. The interference, obeying fermionic quantum statistics, is manifest in the momentum dependence of the number of produced electrons and positrons along the linearly polarized electric field. The central value grows like N2 for N pulses [i.e., N "slits"], and the functional form is well described by a coherent multiple-slit expression. This behavior is generic for many driven quantum systems. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Wiemer A.J.,University of Connecticut | Wiemer D.F.,University of Iowa
Topics in Current Chemistry | Year: 2015

A substantial portion of metabolism involves transformation of phosphate esters, including pathways leading to nucleotides and oligonucleotides, carbohydrates, isoprenoids and steroids, and phosphorylated proteins. Because the natural substrates bear one or more negative charges, drugs that target these enzymes generally must be charged as well, but small charged molecules can have difficulty traversing the cell membrane by means other than endocytosis. The resulting dichotomy has stimulated a great deal of effort to develop effective prodrugs, compounds that carry little or no charge to enable them to transit biological membranes, but able to release the parent drug once inside the target cell. This chapter presents recent studies on advances in prodrug forms, along with representative examples of their application to marketed and developmental drugs. © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014.

Connor D.F.,University of Connecticut | Ford J.D.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Clinical Psychiatry | Year: 2012

Objective: Although current attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnostic criteria do not include emotional symptoms, externalizing behavior problems, or aggression, the practicing clinician is often faced with the evaluation and management of these symptoms when assessing and treating patients with ADHD. While much research has focused on comorbid disorders in ADHD, less attention has been directed to comorbid symptoms that may or may not meet syndrome criteria but that influence ADHD treatment planning and outcome. The aim of this study is to describe emotional and behavioral symptoms in children and adolescents with ADHD and compare them with non-ADHD control groups. Method: From 1995 to 2005, clinically referred children and adolescents with the combined subtype of ADHD (n = 175) or the inattentive subtype of ADHD (n = 70) as diagnosed by the primary physician (using DSM-IV criteria) were compared with a non-ADHD psychiatric control group (n = 65) and a non-ADHD community control group (n = 72) on measures that assessed emotional symptoms, externalizing behavior problems, and aggression; comparisons were controlled for age, sex, and family income. Results: Both ADHD groups had depressive symptom severity equal to a non-ADHD psychiatric control group and greater than community control groups. Externalizing behavior problems and aggression were more severe in the ADHD combined subtype group compared with other groups. As ADHD symptom severity increased, externalizing behavior problems and aggression, but not internalizing symptoms, also increased in severity. Family income had an independent relationship with externalizing disorders. Conclusions: High rates of internalizing emotional symptoms, externalizing problem behaviors, and aggression were found in a clinical ADHD sample. Externalizing behavior problems and aggression appeared to be related to the hyperactive-impulsive ADHD symptom domain and to overall ADHD symptom severity. It remains an empirical question as to whether effective treatment of the core symptoms of ADHD will also reduce the presence of associated emotional and behavioral symptoms and improve daily functioning in children and adolescents with ADHD. © Copyright 2012 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.

Leadbeater N.E.,University of Connecticut
Chemical Communications | Year: 2010

An IR probe has been interfaced with a scientific microwave unit, this allowing for real-time in situ monitoring of microwave-assisted reactions using IR spectroscopy. A number of organic transformations have been probed and the apparatus shown to work effectively as a tool for qualitative studies. © 2010 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Govoni K.E.,University of Connecticut
Current Molecular Pharmacology | Year: 2012

The insulin-like growth factors (IGFs) are the most abundant growth factors stored in bone and produced by osteoblasts. IGF-I is an important regulator of osteoblast function and required for optimal bone development and maintenance. IGF-I can act in an endocrine, paracrine or autocrine manner and is regulated by a family of six IGF binding proteins (IGFBPs). The IGFBPs are often found bound to IGF-I in the circulation or complexed with IGF-I in osteoblasts. IGFBP-3 and -5 are known stimulators of IGF-I actions, whereas IGFBP-1, -2, -4 and -6 are known inhibitors of IGF-I action in bone. Once IGF-I binds to its receptor (type 1 IGF receptor) it initiates a complex signaling pathway including the phosphoinositol 3-kinase (PI3-K)/3-PI-dependent kinase (PDK)-1/Akt pathway and the Ras/Raf/mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase pathway which stimulate cell function and/or survival. Based on the critical role for IGF-I in osteoblasts, it is a logical candidate for anabolic therapy. However, systemic administration of IGF-I is not cell specific and a limited number of long term experiments have been completed to date. Several recent findings indicate that many of the IGFBPs and specific proteins in the IGF-I signaling pathways are also potent anabolic factors in regulating osteoblast function. This review will focus on the role of these factors in mediating IGF-I action in osteoblasts and how they may serve as potential targets to stimulate osteoblast function and bone formation. © 2012 Bentham Science Publishers.

Raissian K.M.,University of Connecticut
Child Abuse and Neglect | Year: 2015

This article used child maltreatment reports from New York State from 2000 to 2010 to investigate the relationship between county level unemployment and county level child maltreatment rates. Models showed that a 1 percentage point increase in unemployment rates reduced the child report rate by approximately 4.25%. Report rates for young children (children under the age of 6) and older children (children ages 6 and over) responded similarly to changes in local unemployment, but the relationship between unemployment rates and child maltreatment reports did vary by a county's metropolitan designation. The negative relationship between unemployment and child maltreatment reports was largely contained to metropolitan counties. The relationship between unemployment and child maltreatment reports in non-metropolitan counties was often positive but not statistically significant. These findings were robust to a number of specifications. In alternate models, the county's mandated reporter employment rate was added as a control; the inclusion of this variable did not alter the results. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Rangel T.F.,University of Connecticut | Diniz-Filho J.A.F.,Federal University of Goais | Bini L.M.,Federal University of Goais
Ecography | Year: 2010

SAM (Spatial Analysis in Macroecology) is a freeware application that offers a comprehensive array of spatial statistical methods, focused primarily on surface pattern spatial analysis. SAM is a compact, but powerful stand-alone software, with a user-friendly, menu-driven graphical interface. The methods available in SAM are the most commonly used in macroecology and geographical ecology, and range from simple tools for exploratory graphical analysis (e.g. mapping and graphing) and descriptive statistics of spatial patterns (e.g. autocorrelation metrics), to advanced spatial regression models (e.g. autoregression and eigenvector filtering). Download of the software, along with the user manual, can be downloaded online at the SAM website: (permanent URL at ). © 2010 The Author. Journal compilation © 2010 Ecography.

Schwartz D.,University of Connecticut
Essays in Biochemistry | Year: 2012

Our understanding of the importance of lysine post-translational modifications in mediating protein function has led to a significant improvement in the experimental tools aimed at characterizing their existence. Nevertheless, it remains likely that at present we have only experimentally detected a small fraction of all lysine modification sites across the commonly studied proteomes. As a result, online computational tools aimed at predicting lysine modification sites have the potential to provide valuable insight to researchers developing hypotheses regarding these modifications. This chapter discusses the metrics and procedures used to assess predictive tools and surveys 11 online computational tools aimed at the prediction of the four most widely studied lysine post-translational modifications (acetylation, methylation, SUMOylation and ubiquitination). Analyses using unbiased testing data sets suggest that nine of the 11 lysine post-translational modification tools perform no better than random, or have false-positive rates which make them unusable by the experimental biologist, despite self-reported sensitivity and specificity values to the contrary. The implications of these findings for those using and creating lysine post-translational modification software are discussed. © 2012 Biochemical Society.

Mauldin L.,University of Connecticut
Science Technology and Human Values | Year: 2014

This article provides an ethnographic account of pediatric cochlear implantation, revealing an important shift in the definition of deafness from a sensory loss to a neurological processing problem. In clinical and long-term therapeutic practices involved in pediatric implantation, the cochlear implant (CI) is recast as a device that merely provides access to the brain. The "real" treatment emerges as long-term therapeutic endeavors focused on neurological training. This redefinition then ushers in an ensuing responsibility to "train the brain," subsequently displacing failure from the device onto the individual's ability to train his or her brain (in pediatric implantation, this most often falls onto the mother). New caregiving techniques that accompany implantation are understood through neuropolitics, showing how parents are encouraged to engage in neuro-self-governance, and how the concept of neuroplasticity is used to cultural ends. © The Author(s) 2013.

Kirouac K.N.,University of Western Ontario | Basu A.K.,University of Connecticut | Ling H.,University of Western Ontario
Nucleic Acids Research | Year: 2013

Nitrated polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are common environmental pollutants, of which many are mutagenic and carcinogenic. 1-Nitropyrene is the most abundant nitrated polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, which causes DNA damage and is carcinogenic in experimental animals. Error-prone translesion synthesis of 1-nitropyrene-derived DNA lesions generates mutations that likely play a role in the etiology of cancer. Here, we report two crystal structures of the human Y-family DNA polymerase iota complexed with the major 1-nitropyrene DNA lesion at the insertion stage, incorporating either dCTP or dATP nucleotide opposite the lesion. Polι maintains the adduct in its active site in two distinct conformations. dCTP forms a Watson-Crick base pair with the adducted guanine and excludes the pyrene ring from the helical DNA, which inhibits replication beyond the lesion. By contrast, the mismatched dATP stacks above the pyrene ring that is intercalated in the helix and achieves a productive conformation for misincorporation. The intra-helical bulky pyrene mimics a base pair in the active site and facilitates adenine misincorporation. By structure-based mutagenesis, we show that the restrictive active site of human polη prevents the intra-helical conformation and A-base misinsertions. This work provides one of the molecular mechanisms for G to T transversions, a signature mutation in human lung cancer. © 2012 The Author(s) 2012. Published by Oxford University Press.

Kashwan P.,University of Connecticut
Land Use Policy | Year: 2013

Scholars and advocates increasingly favor rights-based approaches over traditional exclusionary policies in conservation. Yet, national and international conservation policies and programs have often led to the exclusion of forest-dependent peoples. This article proposes and tests the hypothesis that the failures of rights-based approaches in conservation can be attributed in significant measure to the political economic interest of the state in the tropics. To this end, the article presents findings from the empirical analysis of the Forest Rights Act of 2006 in India. Two key recommendations emerge from this analysis. One, the proposals for operationalizing rights-based approaches will likely be far more effective if they protect the inalienability of a minimal set of rights critical to the subsistence and well-being of forest people, as opposed to promising the protection of an expansive set of rights subject to the instrumentality of conservation. Two, the proponents of rights-based approaches in conservation need to guard against their actions reinforcing the institutional status quo of the state control of forests. This, in turn, requires international conservation groups to join hands with national forest rights movements. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Cheney A.M.,University of Connecticut
Qualitative Health Research | Year: 2011

In this article, I present the findings from an ethnographic study of 18 women college students living in the northeastern United States. I examine how ethnically diverse women dealt with the messages of the dominant White society's obsession with thinness, and whether it affected their perceptions of an ideal body image. From the analysis of the interviews, I identified and extracted several themes related to ethnicity, aesthetic body ideals, body dissatisfaction, and disturbed eating. Grounded in the women's narratives, I found that ethnically diverse women coming of age in American society experience anxieties and emotional stress as they related to others in their daily lives. Their stories shed light on how the body is a vehicle for social mobility and is used by women from marginalized identities to strategically negotiate social inequalities embedded in daily social relationships and interactions that more privileged women do not encounter. © 2011 SAGE Publications.

Lewis L.F.,University of Connecticut
Qualitative Health Research | Year: 2014

As the prevalence of dementia continues to grow, informal caregivers face unique challenges as they approach the end of life, and access to support and palliative care is often limited. I used a phenomenological approach to explore the experiences of caregivers actively seeking formal end-of-life care, in particular hospice care, for a loved one with dementia. In-depth interviews with 11 caregivers about 14 patients revealed five themes, including: setting the stage for heartbreak, reaching the boiling point, getting through the front lines, settling for less, and welcoming death. Nurses must recognize the complex needs of caregivers, educate caregivers on the disease process, and adjust to palliative goals sooner to meet the needs of caregivers. Prevalence of these issues must be further examined through quantitative study to evaluate the need to reconsider current hospice eligibility criteria based on prognosis. © The Author(s) 2014.

Young J.D.,University of Connecticut | Young J.D.,Vanderbilt University
Bioinformatics | Year: 2014

Summary: 13C flux analysis studies have become an essential component of metabolic engineering research. The scope of these studies has gradually expanded to include both isotopically steady-state and transient labeling experiments, the latter of which are uniquely applicable to photosynthetic organisms and slow-to-label mammalian cell cultures. Isotopomer network compartmental analysis (INCA) is the first publicly available software package that can perform both steady-state metabolic flux analysis and isotopically non-stationary metabolic flux analysis. The software provides a framework for comprehensive analysis of metabolic networks using mass balances and elementary metabolite unit balances. The generation of balance equations and their computational solution is completely automated and can be performed on networks of arbitrary complexity. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press.

Carrillo J.-M.Y.,University of Connecticut | Dobrynin A.V.,University of Connecticut
ACS Nano | Year: 2011

We performed molecular dynamics simulations of a multilayer assembly of oppositely charged nanoparticles on porous substrates with cylindrical pores. The film was constructed by sequential adsorption of oppositely charged nanoparticles in layer-by-layer fashion from dilute solutions. The multilayer assembly proceeds through surface overcharging after completion of each deposition step. There is almost linear growth in the surface coverage and film thickness during the deposition process. The multilayer assembly also occurs inside cylindrical pores. The adsorption of nanoparticles inside pores is hindered by the electrostatic interactions of newly adsorbing nanoparticles with the multilayer film forming inside the pores and on the substrate. This is manifested in the saturation of the average thickness of the nanoparticle layers formed on the pore walls with an increasing number of deposition steps. The distribution of nanoparticles inside the cylindrical pore was nonuniform with a significant excess of nanoparticles at the pore entrance. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Trotter J.,Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz | Karram K.,Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz | Nishiyama A.,University of Connecticut
Brain Research Reviews | Year: 2010

The NG2 proteoglycan is a type 1-transmembrane protein expressed by a range of cell types within and outside the mammalian nervous system. NG2-expressing (NG2) cells are found in grey and white matter tracts of the developing and adult CNS and have previously been assumed to represent oligodendrocyte precursor cells: new work using transgenic mice has shown that NG2 cells generate oligodendrocytes, protoplasmic astrocytes and in some instances neurons in vivo. NG2 cells express GABAA receptors and the AMPA subtype of glutamate receptors. They make intimate contact to neurons prior to myelinating axons and also form electron-dense synaptic specialisations with axons in the cerebellum, cortex and hippocampus and with non-myelinated axons in the corpus callosum. These synaptic NG2 cells respond to neuronal release of glutamate and GABA. This neuron-glia interaction may thus regulate the differentiation and proliferation of NG2 cells. The C-terminal PDZ-binding motif of the NG2 protein binds several PDZ proteins including Mupp1, Syntenin and the Glutamate Receptor Interacting Protein (GRIP). Since GRIP can bind subunits of the AMPA receptors expressed by NG2 cells, the interaction between GRIP and NG2 may orientate the glial AMPA receptors towards sites of neuronal glutamate release. The origin, heterogeneity and function of NG2 cells as modulators of the neuronal network are important incompletely resolved questions. © 2009 Elsevier B.V.

McFall-Ngai M.,University of Wisconsin - Madison | Nyholm S.V.,University of Connecticut | Castillo M.G.,New Mexico State University
Seminars in Immunology | Year: 2010

The squid-vibrio symbiosis is an experimental system being studied as a model of the chronic colonization of animal epithelia by bacterial partners. One principal question being asked with this model is: what is the role of the immune system in the dynamics of the onset and maintenance of the symbiotic state? This review focuses upon results of research to date, which have demonstrated that both cell-mediated and cell-free components of the innate immune system are involved in these processes. © 2009.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
International Journal of Modern Physics A | Year: 2012

On this 75th anniversary of the publication of the HeisenbergEuler paper on the full nonperturbative one-loop effective action for quantum electrodynamics I review their paper and discuss some of the impacts it has had on quantum field theory. © 2012 World Scientific Publishing Company.

Cumulative structural disadvantage theory posits two major sources of endogenous selection in shaping racial health disparities: a race-based version of the theory anticipates a racially distinct selection process, whereas a social class-based version anticipates a racially similar process. To operationalize cumulative structural disadvantage, this study uses data from the 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth in a Latent Class Analysis that demographically profiles health impairment trajectories. This analysis is used to examine the nature of selection as it relates to racial differences in the development of health impairments that are significant enough to hinder one’s ability to work. The results provide no direct support for the race-based version of cumulative structural disadvantage theory. Instead, two key findings support the social class–based version of cumulative disadvantage theory. First, the functional form of the different health trajectories are invariant for whites and blacks, suggesting more racial similarly in the developmental process than anticipated by the race-based version of the theory. The extent of the racial disparity in the prevalences across the health impairment trajectories is, however, significant and noteworthy: nearly one-third of blacks (28 %) in the United States experience some form of impairment during their prime working years compared with 18.8 % of whites. Second, racial differences in childhood background mediate this racial health disparity through the indirect pathway of occupational attainment and through the direct pathway of early-life exposure to health-adverse environments. Thus, the selection of individuals into different health trajectories, based largely on childhood socioeconomic background, helps explain racial disparities in the development of health impairments. © 2014, Population Association of America.

Armstrong L.E.,University of Connecticut
Nutrition Reviews | Year: 2012

The purpose of this article is to review the effects of chronic mild dehydration and fluid consumption on specific health outcomes including obesity. The electronic databases PubMed and Google Scholar were searched for relevant literature published from the time of their inception to 2011, with results restricted to studies performed on human subjects and reports in the English language. Key words included the following: dehydration, hypohydration, water intake, fluid intake, disease, and the names of specific disease states. Strength of evidence categories were described for 1) medical conditions associated with chronic dehydration or low daily water intake, and 2) randomized-controlled trials regarding the effects of increased water consumption on caloric intake, weight gain, and satiety. This process determined that urolithiasis is the only disorder that has been consistently associated (i.e., 11 of 13 publications) with chronic low daily water intake. Regarding obesity and type 2 diabetes, evidence suggests that increased water intake may reduce caloric intake for some individuals. Recommendations for future investigations include measuring total fluid intake (water+beverages+water in solid food), conducting randomized-controlled experiments, identifying novel hydration biomarkers, and delineating hydration categories. © 2012 International Life Sciences Institute.

Singer M.,University of Connecticut
Addiction | Year: 2012

Aims This paper reviews the world anthropology of drugs and alcohol use literature, identifying key issues addressed by anthropologists, methods and theoretical models in use, trends in focus over time and future directions. Methods Papers and books that comprise the literature were identified through computer search using the keywords: ethnography of drug use (and variants, e.g. drug ethnography, qualitative approaches in drug research), ethnography of drinking, anthropology and drug use, and anthropology and drinking. Search engines included Google Scholar, EBSCOHost, AnthroSource and PubMed. Identified sources were read and integrated into the review. Results and Conclusions The literature search identified a rich and growing literature on the anthropology of drinking and drug use. The research and published literature on the anthropology of drug use has grown and diversified since the 1970s, found acceptance in the wider multi-disciplinary domain of alcohol and drug studies and developed beyond the socio-cultural model to include life-style, critical medical anthropology and experiential explanatory models. Anthropological research has helped to shape the field of addiction science, e.g. ethnographic studies show that the lived worlds and self-identities of drug users have cultural order and socially constructed purpose and meaning, and experiential research shows that some addictions or aspects of addictions can be affirmative, creative and sustainable, at least at the individual level. The human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome pandemic has significantly increased anthropological research on drug-related issues world-wide. © 2012 The Author, Addiction © 2012 Society for the Study of Addiction.

Christensen J.L.,University of Connecticut
Journal of the International AIDS Society | Year: 2013

Men who have sex with men (MSM) often face socially sanctioned disapproval of sexual deviance from the heterosexual "normal." Such sexual stigma can be internalized producing a painful affective state (i.e., shame). Although shame (e.g., addiction) can predict risk-taking (e.g., alcohol abuse), sexual shame's link to sexual risk-taking is unclear. Socially Optimized Learning in Virtual Environments (SOLVE) was designed to reduce MSM's sexual shame, but whether it does so, and if that reduction predicts HIV risk reduction, is unclear. To test if at baseline, MSM's reported past unprotected anal intercourse (UAI) is related to shame; MSM's exposure to SOLVE compared to a wait-list control (WLC) condition reduces MSM's shame; and shame-reduction mediates the link between WLC condition and UAI risk reduction. METhods: HIV-negative, self-identified African American, Latino or White MSM, aged 18-24 years, who had had UAI with a non-primary/casual partner in the past three months were recruited for a national online study. Eligible MSM were computer randomized to either WLC or a web-delivered SOLVE. Retained MSM completed baseline measures (e.g., UAI in the past three months; current level of shame) and, in the SOLVE group, viewed at least one level of the game. At the end of the first session, shame was measured again. MSM completed follow-up UAI measures three months later. All data from 921 retained MSM (WLC condition, 484; SOLVE condition, 437) were analyzed, with missing data multiply imputed. At baseline, MSM reporting more risky sexual behaviour reported more shame (r s=0.21; p<0.001). MSM in the SOLVE intervention reported more shame reduction (M=-0.08) than MSM in the control condition (M=0.07; t(919)=4.24; p<0.001). As predicted, the indirect effect was significant (point estimate -0.10, 95% bias-corrected CI [-0.01 to -0.23] such that participants in the SOLVE treatment condition reported greater reductions in shame, which in turn predicted reductions in risky sexual behaviour at follow-up. The direct effect, however, was not significant. SOLVE is the first intervention to: (1) significantly reduce shame for MSM; and (2) demonstrate that shame-reduction, due to an intervention, is predictive of risk (UAI) reduction over time.

Andersen C.J.,University of Connecticut | Fernandez M.L.,University of Connecticut
Reviews in Endocrine and Metabolic Disorders | Year: 2013

Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a cluster of metabolic abnormalities characterized by central obesity, dyslipidemias, hypertension, high fasting glucose, chronic low-grade inflammation and oxidative stress. This condition has become an increasing problem in our society where about 34 % of adults are diagnosed with MetS. In parallel with the adult situation, a significant number of children present lipid abnormalities and insulin resistance, which can be used as markers of MetS in the pediatric population. Changes in lifestyle including healthy dietary regimens and increased physical activity should be the first lines of therapy to decrease MetS. In this article, we present the most recent information on successful dietary modifications that can reduce the parameters associated with MetS. Successful dietary strategies include energy restriction and weight loss, manipulation of dietary macronutrients - either through restriction of carbohydrates, fat, or enrichment in beneficial fatty acids, incorporation of functional foods and bioactive nutrients, and adherence to dietary and lifestyle patterns such the Mediterranean diet and diet/exercise regimens. Together, the recent findings presented in this review serve as evidence to support the therapeutic treatment of MetS through diet. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Ramirez-Esparza N.,University of Connecticut | Garcia-Sierra A.,University of Washington | Kuhl P.K.,University of Washington
Developmental Science | Year: 2014

Language input is necessary for language learning, yet little is known about whether, in natural environments, the speech style and social context of language input to children impacts language development. In the present study we investigated the relationship between language input and language development, examining both the style of parental speech, comparing 'parentese' speech to standard speech, and the social context in which speech is directed to children, comparing one-on-one (1:1) to group social interactions. Importantly, the language input variables were assessed at home using digital first-person perspective recordings of the infants' auditory environment as they went about their daily lives (N =26, 11- and 14-months-old). We measured language development using (a) concurrent speech utterances, and (b) word production at 24 months. Parentese speech in 1:1 contexts is positively correlated with both concurrent speech and later word production. Mediation analyses further show that the effect of parentese speech-1:1 on infants' later language is mediated by concurrent speech. Our results suggest that both the social context and the style of speech in language addressed to children are strongly linked to a child's future language development. Language input is necessary for language learning, yet little is known about whether, in natural environments, the speech style and social context of language input to children impacts language development. In the present study we investigated the relationship between language input and language development, examining both the style of parental speech, comparing 'parentese' speech to standard speech, and the social context in which speech is directed to children, comparing one-on-one (1:1) to group social interactions. Importantly, the language input variables were assessed at home using digital first-person perspective recordings of the infants' auditory environment as they went about their daily lives (N = 26, 11- and 14-months-old). © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Bohannon R.W.,University of Connecticut
Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care | Year: 2015

Purpose of review Grip strength measured by dynamometry is well established as an indicator of muscle status, particularly among older adults. This review was undertaken to provide a synopsis of recent literature addressing the clinical and prognostic value of hand-grip dynamometry. Recent findings Numerous large-scale normative grip strength projects have been published lately. Other recent studies have reinforced the concurrent relationship of grip strength with measures of nutritional status or muscle mass and measures of function and health status. Studies published in the past few years have confirmed the value of grip strength as a predictor of mortality, hospital length of stay, and physical functioning. Summary As a whole, the recent literature supports the use of hand-grip dynamometry as a fundamental element of the physical examination of patients, particularly if they are older adults. Copyright © 2015 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Mbatia H.W.,University of Connecticut | Burdette S.C.,Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Biochemistry | Year: 2012

Metal ions have well-established catalytic and structural roles in proteins. Much of the knowledge acquired about metalloenzymes has been derived using spectroscopic techniques and X-ray crystallography, but these methodologies are less effective for studying metal ions that are not tightly bound to biomacromolecules. In order to prevent deleterious chemistry, cells tightly regulate the uptake, distribution, and intracellular concentrations of metal ions. Investigation into these homeostasis mechanisms has necessitated the development of alternative ways to study metal ions. Photochemical tools such as small molecule and protein-based fluorescent sensors as well as photocaged complexes have provided insight into the homeostasis and signaling mechanisms of Ca2+, Zn2+, and Cu+, but a comprehensive picture of metal ions in biology will require additional development of these techniques, which are reviewed in this Current Topics article. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Bezrukov F.,University of Connecticut | Bezrukov F.,Brookhaven National Laboratory
Classical and Quantum Gravity | Year: 2013

The Higgs field of the pure Standard Model can lead to the inflationary expansion of the early Universe if it is non-minimally coupled to gravity. The model predicts Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) parameters in perfect agreement with the current observations and has implications for the Higgs boson mass. We review the model, its predictions, problems arising with its quantization and some closely related models. © 2013 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Rusling J.F.,University of Connecticut | Rusling J.F.,University of Connecticut Health Center
Chemical Record | Year: 2012

For this special issue on 90 years of polarography, the following personal account describes how my early research in electrochemistry and polarography in the laboratory of Prof. Petr Zuman led to a major research effort in the determination of proteins for cancer detection and monitoring. It reviews the very recent history of nanoparticle labels and multiplexed detection in protein immunosensors. It then describes our journey of discovery that has led to ultrasensitive protein immunosensors achieved by combining nanostructured electrodes with particles labeled with up to 1/2 million enzymes that can detect down to as little as 1 fg mL -1 protein in diluted serum. Our most mature multiple protein detection system is a microfluidic device with eight sensors coated with 5-nm gold nanoparticles that uses off-line protein detection with heavily labeled magnetic particles. This approach has led to reliable sub pg mL -1 detection limits for multiple proteins, provides excellent correlation with referee ELISA methods, and is currently being used for validation of panels of biomarkers for oral and prostate cancer. The article ends with a section on future perspectives. Copyright © 2012 The Japan Chemical Journal Forum and Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Salamone J.D.,University of Connecticut | Correa M.,University of Connecticut | Correa M.,Jaume I University
Biological Psychiatry | Year: 2013

Over the last few years, the concept of food addiction has become a common feature in the scientific literature, as well as the popular press. Nevertheless, the use of the term addiction to describe pathological aspects of food intake in humans remains controversial, and even among those who affirm the validity of the concept, there is considerable disagreement about its utility for explaining the increasing prevalence of obesity throughout much of the world. An examination of the literature on food addiction indicates that mesolimbic and nigrostriatal dopamine systems often are cited as mechanisms that contribute to the establishment of food addiction. However, in reviewing this literature, it is important to have a detailed consideration of the complex nature of dopaminergic involvement in motivational processes. For example, although it is often stated that mesolimbic dopamine mediates reward, there is no standard or consistent technical meaning of this term. Moreover, there is a persistent tendency to link dopamine transmission with pleasure or hedonia, as opposed to other aspects of motivation or learning. The present article provides a critical discussion of some aspects of the food addiction literature, viewed through the lens of recent findings and current theoretical views of dopaminergic involvement in food motivation. Furthermore, compulsive food intake and binge eating will be considered from an evolutionary perspective, in terms of the motivational subsystems that are involved in adaptive patterns of food consumption and seeking behaviors and a consideration of how these could be altered in pathological conditions. © 2013 Society of Biological Psychiatry.

Salamone J.,University of Connecticut | Correa M.,University of Connecticut | Correa M.,Jaume I University
Neuron | Year: 2012

Nucleus accumbens dopamine is known to play a role in motivational processes, and dysfunctions of mesolimbic dopamine may contribute to motivational symptoms of depression and other disorders, as well as features of substance abuse. Although it has become traditional to label dopamine neurons as "reward" neurons, this is an overgeneralization, and it is important to distinguish between aspects of motivation that are differentially affected by dopaminergic manipulations. For example, accumbens dopamine does not mediate primary food motivation or appetite, but is involved in appetitive and aversive motivational processes including behavioral activation, exertion of effort, approach behavior, sustained task engagement, Pavlovian processes, and instrumental learning. In this review, we discuss the complex roles of dopamine in behavioral functions related to motivation.

Li X.,University of Connecticut | Faghri A.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Power Sources | Year: 2011

A novel approach has been proposed to improve the water management of a passive direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) fed with neat methanol without increasing its volume or weight. By adopting perforated covers with different open ratios at the cathode, the water management has been significantly improved in a DMFC fed with neat methanol. An optimized cathode open ratio could ensure both the sufficient supply of oxygen and low water loss. While changing the open ratio of anode vaporizer can adjust the methanol crossover rate in a DMFC. Furthermore, the gas mixing layer, added between the anode vaporizer and the anode current collector to increase the mass transfer resistance, can improve the cell performance, decrease the methanol crossover, and increase the fuel efficiency. For the case of a DMFC fed with neat methanol, an anode vaporizer with the open ratio of 12% and a cathode open ratio of 20% produced the highest peak power density, 22.7 mW cm-2, and high fuel efficiency, 70.1%, at room temperature of 25 ± 1 °C and ambient humidity of 25-50%. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Cuevas K.,University of Connecticut | Bell M.A.,Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Child Development | Year: 2014

Individual differences in infant attention are theorized to reflect the speed of information processing and are related to later cognitive abilities (i.e., memory, language, and intelligence). This study provides the first systematic longitudinal analysis of infant attention and early childhood executive function (EF; e.g., working memory, inhibitory control, cognitive flexibility). A group of 5-month-olds (n = 201) were classified as short or long lookers. At 24, 36, and 48 months of age, children completed age-appropriate EF tasks. Infant short lookers (i.e., more efficient information processors) exhibited higher EF throughout early childhood as compared to infant long lookers, even after controlling for verbal ability (a potential indicator of intelligence). These findings are discussed in relation to the emergence of executive attention. Child Development © 2014 The Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

Delong J.M.,Medical University of South Carolina | Russell R.P.,University of Connecticut | Mazzocca A.D.,University of Connecticut
Arthroscopy - Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery | Year: 2012

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) has been the subject of hundreds of publications in recent years. Reports of its effects in tissue, both positive and negative, have generated great interest in the orthopaedic community. Protocols for PRP preparation vary widely between authors and are often not well documented in the literature, making results difficult to compare or replicate. A classification system is needed to more accurately compare protocols and results and effectively group studies together for meta-analysis. Although some classification systems have been proposed, no single system takes into account the multitude of variables that determine the efficacy of PRP. In this article we propose a simple method for organizing and comparing results in the literature. The PAW classification system is based on 3 components: (1) the absolute number of Platelets, (2) the manner in which platelet Activation occurs, and (3) the presence or absence of White cells. By analyzing these 3 variables, we are able to accurately compare publications. © 2012 Arthroscopy Association of North America.

Light rail transit (LRT) is increasingly accompanied by overlay zoning which specifies the density and type of future development to encourage landscapes conducive to transit use. Neighbourhood type (based on land use mix) is used to partition data and investigate how pre-existing land use, treatment with a park-and-ride (PAR) versus walk-and-ride (WAR) station and overlay zoning interrelate. Hedonic models estimate capitalisation effects of LRT-related accessibility and overlay zoning on single-family houses and condos in different neighbourhoods for the system in metropolitan Phoenix, Arizona. Impacts differ by housing and neighbourhood type. Amenity-dominated mixed-use neighbourhoods-predominantly WAR communities-experience premiums of 6 per cent for single-family houses and over 20 per cent for condos, the latter boosted an additional 37 per cent by overlay zoning. Residential neighbourhoods-predominantly PAR communities-experience no capitalisation benefits for single-family houses and a discount for condos. The results suggest that land use mix is an important variable to select comparable neighbourhoods. © 2010 Urban Studies Journal Limited.

Rawitscher G.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics | Year: 2013

There are cases where the potentials present in the Schrödinger equation are of long range and have measurable effects as, for instance, for the interaction between atoms at low temperatures or for the calculation of atomic three-body collisions. In these cases, the solution of the Schrödinger equation for the wave functions by finite-difference or finite-element techniques may not achieve the desired accuracy. An iterative method is presented, based on the Lippmann-Schwinger integral equation, that is similar in spirit to the Born approximation but is applied only in the region of the potential tails. This procedure extends the numerical solution obtained for short distances to large distances without loss of accuracy. Numerical examples are presented for atomic van der Waals potentials Cn/rn. For C 6/r6, the size of the radial interval, for which an accuracy of 10-10 is achieved, is â‰[100,1000] atomic units a 0. For the case of C3/r3, the required interval for the same level of accuracy is [4000,50 000], which, because of its large size, has to be subdivided into smaller partitions. The wave numbers k chosen for these examples correspond to atomic collision energies in the micro-Kelvin range. The larger the wave number k, the faster the rate of the convergence, and the limit k→0 is also investigated. A criterion is given for determining whether the iterations converge in that limit. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Richardson J.L.,University of Connecticut | Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut | Bolnick D.I.,Howard Hughes Medical Institute | Skelly D.K.,Yale University
Trends in Ecology and Evolution | Year: 2014

Local adaptation has been a major focus of evolutionary ecologists working across diverse systems for decades. However, little of this research has explored variation at microgeographic scales because it has often been assumed that high rates of gene flow will prevent adaptive divergence at fine spatial scales. Here, we establish a quantitative definition of microgeographic adaptation based on Wright's dispersal neighborhood that standardizes dispersal abilities, enabling this measure to be compared across species. We use this definition to evaluate growing evidence of evolutionary divergence at fine spatial scales. We identify the main mechanisms known to facilitate this adaptation and highlight illustrative examples of microgeographic evolution in nature. Collectively, this evidence requires that we revisit our understanding of the spatial scale of adaptation and consider how microgeographic adaptation and its driving mechanisms can fundamentally alter ecological and evolutionary dynamics in nature. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Ma W.,Michigan State University | Berkowitz G.A.,University of Connecticut
New Phytologist | Year: 2011

Ca2+ elevation in the cytosol is an essential early event during pathogen response signaling cascades. However, the specific ion channels involved in Ca2+ influx into plant cells, and how Ca2+ signals are initiated and regulate downstream events during pathogen defense responses, are at present unclear. Plant cyclic nucleotide gated ion channels (CNGCs) provide a pathway for Ca2+ conductance across the plasma membrane (PM) and facilitate cytosolic Ca2+ elevation in response to pathogen signals. Recent studies indicate that the recognition of pathogens results in cyclic nucleotide production and the activation of CNGCs, which leads to downstream generation of pivotal signaling molecules (such as nitric oxide (NO)). Calmodulins (CaMs) and CaM-like proteins (CMLs) are also involved in this signaling, functioning as Ca2+ sensors and mediating the synthesis of NO during the plant pathogen response signaling cascade. In this article, these and other pivotal signaling components downstream from the Ca2+ signal, such as Ca2+-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) and CaM-binding transcription activators (CAMTAs), are discussed in terms of their involvement in the pathogen response signal transduction cascade. © 2010 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2010 New Phytologist Trust.

Recent advances in sequencing technologies make it possible to comprehensively study structural variations (SVs) using sequence data of large-scale populations. Currently, more efforts have been taken to develop methods that call SVs with exact breakpoints. Among these approaches, split-read mapping methods can be applied on low-coverage sequence data. With increasing amount of data generated, more efficient split-read mapping methods are still needed. Also, since sequence errors can not be avoided for the current sequencing technologies, more accurate split-read mapping methods are still needed to better handle sequence errors. In this paper, we present a split-read mapping method implemented in the program SVseq2 which improves our previous work SVseq1. Similar to SVseq1, SVseq2 calls deletions (and insertions) with exact breakpoints. SVseq2 achieves more accurate calling through split-read mapping within focal regions. SVseq2 also has a much desired feature: there is no need to specify the maximum deletion size, while some existing split-read mapping methods need more memory and longer running time when larger maximum deletion size is chosen. SVseq2 is also much faster because it only needs to examine a small number of ways of splitting the reads. Moreover, SVseq2 supports insertion calling from low-coverage sequence data, while SVseq1 only supports deletion finding. The program SVseq2 can be downloaded at SVseq2 enables accurate and efficient SV calling through split-read mapping within focal regions using paired-end reads. For many simulated data and real sequence data, SVseq2 outperforms some other existing approaches in accuracy and efficiency, especially when sequence coverage is low.

White C.M.,University of Connecticut
Annals of Pharmacotherapy | Year: 2015

Objective: To review the mechanism of action for PCSK9 monoclonal antibodies and critically evaluate the therapeutic potential of evolocumab and alirocumab in the treatment of hypercholesterolemia. Data Sources: Ovid MEDLINE search from 1980 to August 2015 using the terms PCSK9, evolocumab, and alirocumab with forward and backward citation tracking. Study Selection and Data Extraction: English-language trials and studies assessing the mechanism, efficacy, or safety of PCSK9 monoclonal antibodies were included. Data Synthesis: PCSK9 monoclonal antibodies have a potent ability to reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) by almost 50% in controlled trials: −47.49% (95% CI = −69.6% to −25.4%). They have an acceptable safety profile with no significant elevations in Creatine Kinase (CK) (odds ratio [OR] = 0.72; 95% CI = 0.54 to 0.96) or serious adverse events (OR = 1.01; 95% CI = 0.87 to 1.18), and preliminary evidence suggests reductions in myocardial infarction (OR = 0.49; 95% CI = 0.26 to 0.93). Although it is effective in several familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) patient types, it does not work in homozygous patients with dual allele LDL receptor negative polymorphisms or those who are homozygous for autosomal recessive hypercholesterolemia. Conclusions: Although not preferred over statins because of limited clinical trial evidence of cardiovascular event reductions, dosing convenience, and expense, PCSK9 monoclonal antibodies will have a prominent role to play in the treatment of hypercholesterolemia, especially in patients needing large LDL reductions, including patients with many types of FH. © 2015, © The Author(s) 2015.

Rice S.C.,University of Connecticut
Information Systems Research | Year: 2012

This paper employs a modified investment game to study how online reputation ratings are assigned, and thus how electronic reputations are formed in transactions where buyers and sellers interact anonymously. Of particular interest are the important questions of how online reputations evolve and how specific reputation information is interpreted by market participants. We vary the level of uncertainty in the transaction environment, and measure the effects of this manipulation on buyers' trust and their subsequent rating behaviors. We distinguish between a reputation mechanism and specific reputation information, finding the former has an association with the overall decision of whether to transact in the marketplace, while the latter shows significance in purchase decisions regarding specific sellers. We also find that aggregate reputation information is weighted differently than singular reputation information. Finally, we show that when reputations are increasingly noisy, buyers are less likely to react negatively to poor ratings and are more likely to give sellers the benefit of the doubt when seemingly uncooperative outcomes occur. © 2012 INFORMS.

Bai X.,University of Connecticut
Decision Support Systems | Year: 2011

Sentiment analysis from unstructured text has witnessed a boom in interest in recent years, due to the sheer volume of online reviews and news corpora available in digital form. An accurate method for predicting sentiments could enable us, for instance, to extract opinions from the Internet and gauge online customers' preferences, which could prove valuable for economic or marketing research, for leveraging a strategic advantage for an enterprise, or for detecting cyber risk and security threats. In this paper, we propose a heuristic search-enhanced Markov blanket model that is able to capture the dependencies among words and provide a vocabulary that is adequate for the purpose of extracting sentiments. Computational results on two collections of online movie reviews and three collections of online news show that our method is able to identify a parsimonious set of predictive features, yet simultaneously yield comparable or better prediction results about sentiment orientations, than several state-of-the-art feature selection algorithms as well as sentiment prediction methods. Our results suggest that sentiments are captured by conditional dependencies among words as well as by keywords or high-frequency words. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Babor T.F.,University of Connecticut | Robaina K.,University of Connecticut
American Journal of Public Health | Year: 2013

We explored the emerging relationships among the alcohol industry, academic medicine, and the public health community in the context of public health theory dealing with corporate social responsibility. We reviewed sponsorship of scientific research, efforts to influence public perceptions of research, dissemination of scientific information, and industryfunded policy initiatives. To the extent that the scientific evidence supports the reduction of alcohol consumption through regulatory and legal measures, the academic community has come into increasing conflict with the views of the alcohol industry. We concluded that the alcohol industry has intensified its scientific and policy-related activities under the general framework of corporate social responsibility initiatives, most of which can be described as instrumental to the industry's economic interests. Copyright © 2012 by the American Public Health Association®.

Baker W.L.,University of Connecticut | Phung O.J.,Western University of Health Sciences
Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes | Year: 2012

Background: Oral anticoagulants such as apixaban, dabigatran, and rivaroxaban are alternatives to warfarin for preventing events in patients with atrial fibrillation. Direct comparative studies between agents are unavailable. Our objective was to conduct an adjusted indirect comparison meta-analysis between new oral agents in atrial fibrillation. Methods and Results: We searched MEDLINE and Cochrane Central through February 2012 for randomized, controlled trials in patients with atrial fibrillation evaluating apixaban, dabigatran, or rivaroxaban versus warfarin. For dabigatran, only data from the Food and Drug Administration-approved dose were included. Outcomes included the composite of stroke or systemic embolism, any stroke, and major bleeding among, others. Outcomes were initially pooled using standard random-effects methods, producing risk ratio and 95% confdence intervals. Adjusted indirect comparisons using these pooled estimates were then performed. A total of 44 733 patients from 4 studies were analyzed. Most analyses yielded no differences between agents. Dabigatran lowered risk of composite outcome (risk ratio, 0.75;95% confdence interval, 0.57-1.00), ischemic stroke (0.67;0.48-0.93), and hemorrhagic stroke (0.45;0.45-0.99) versus rivaroxaban. No differences in all strokes or mortality were seen. Apixaban lowered the risk of major bleeding (0.74;0.60-0.91) and gastrointestinal bleeding (0.58;0.41-0.82) versus dabigatran and major bleeding versus rivaroxaban (0.68;0.55-0.83), but increased systemic emboli versus rivaroxaban (3.86;1.17-12.75). Conclusions: Significant differences in efficacy and safety parameters may exist between oral anticoagulant agents in patients with atrial fibrillation. Apixaban lowers the risk of major and gastrointestinal bleeding versus dabigatran and rivaroxaban. Dabigatran lowers the composite of stroke or systemic emboli, and ischemic stroke versus rivaroxaban. Head-to-head clinical trials are required to confrm these findings. © 2012 American Heart Association, Inc.

Abdolvahab M.,University of Connecticut
Attention, Perception, and Psychophysics | Year: 2015

In tasks with two categorically distinct behavioral possibilities a person beginning with one option will typically switch to the other at a higher value of a control parameter in an ascending (increasing) sequence than in a descending (decreasing) sequence. For example, the switch from walking to running on an accelerating treadmill occurs at a higher speed than the switch from running to walking on a decelerating treadmill. The reported research posed the question of whether this variant of behavioral hysteresis was affected by concurrent cognitive activity. Participants walked or ran on a treadmill with a constant acceleration or deceleration while counting backwards by sevens or ones, or not counting. The degree of hysteresis, the difference between walk-to-run and run-to-walk transition speeds, increased with cognitive difficulty. Specifically, the increased hysteresis was shown to be due to lower run-to-walk transition speeds for the more difficult concurrent cognitive tasks. These results support the hypothesis that cognitive load occupies attentional resources that contribute to triggering human gait transitions. © 2015, The Psychonomic Society, Inc.

Asandei A.D.,University of Connecticut | Adebolu O.I.,University of Connecticut | Simpson C.P.,University of Connecticut
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2012

By contrast to typical high-temperature (100-250 °C) telo-/polymerizations of gaseous fluorinated monomers, carried out in high-pressure metal reactors, the visible light, Mn 2(CO) 10-photomediated initiation of vinylidene fluoride (bp = -83 °C) polymerization occurs readily from a variety of alkyl, semifluorinated, and perfluorinated halides at 40 °C, in low-pressure glass tubes and in a variety of solvents, including water and alkyl carbonates. Perfluorinated alkyl iodide initiators also induce a controlled radical polymerization via iodine degenerative transfer (IDT). While IDT proceeds with accumulation of the less reactive P m-CF 2-CH 2-I vs the P n-CH 2-CF 2-I chain ends, Mn 2(CO) 10 enables their subsequent quantitative activation toward the synthesis of well-defined poly(vinylidene fluoride) block copolymers with a variety of other monomers. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Cepeda-Gomez R.,University of Connecticut | Olgac N.,University of Connecticut
IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control | Year: 2011

This technical note presents a methodology for the stability analysis of linear consensus protocols with time-delayed communications. Second order agent dynamics with a fixed and undirected communication topology and uniform delays are considered. This class of group dynamics is very complex and is not fully explored to date. The proposed technique takes advantage of the general structure of the control protocols in performing a state transformation that allows a decomposition of the characteristic equation into a set of factors. These factors distribute the imprint of the delay in the characteristic equation in a much simpler form to achieve the stability analysis in parts. The procedure also prepares the characteristic equation for the deployment of the Cluster Treatment of Characteristic Roots paradigm, a recent method which declares the stability features of the system for various compositions of the time delay and other control parameters. In order to show the effectiveness of this approach, it is applied to different consensus protocols under the assumptions of fixed and undirected communication topologies and uniform communication time delays. © 2011 IEEE.

Coleman C.I.,University of Connecticut
JAMA - Journal of the American Medical Association | Year: 2010

Context: Metformin is the recommended initial drug therapy for patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM). However, the optimal second-line drug when metformin monotherapy fails is unclear. Objective: To determine the comparative efficacy, risk of weight gain, and hypoyglycemia associated with noninsulin antidiabetic drugs in patients with type 2 DM not controlled by metformin alone. Data Sources: A literature search via MEDLINE (beginning in January 1950) and Cochrane CENTRAL through January 2010 and a manual search of references for additional relevant studies. Study Selection: Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) with at least 3 months' duration, evaluating noninsulin antidiabetic drugs added to metformin in patients experiencing an inadequate response to maximized and stable (≥4 weeks at ≥1500 mg or maximally tolerated dose) metformin therapy. Data Extraction: Inclusion/exclusion criteria; duration of patient follow-up; drug, dose, and schedule used; use of concurrent lifestyle modification; and baseline characteristics (age, sex, anthropometrics, glycated hemoglobin A 1c [HbA 1c], duration of DM, and metformin dose). End points collected included mean change in HbA 1c, proportion of patients achieving HbA 1c goal of less than 7%, change in weight, and incidence of hypoglycemia. Mixed-treatment comparison meta-analysis was used to calculate the weighted mean difference for changes from baseline in HbA 1c and body weight and relative risk (RR) of HbA 1c goal attainment and hypoglycemia, with associated 95% credible intervals. Data Synthesis: Overall, 27 RCTs (n=11 198) were included. Mean (range) trial duration was 32 (12-52) weeks. The different classes of drugs were associated with similar HbA 1c reductions (range, 0.64%-0.97%) compared with placebo. Although use of thiazolidinediones, sulfonylureas, and glinides were associated with weight gain (range, 1.77-2.08 kg), glucagon-like peptide-1 analogs, α-glucosidase inhibitors, and dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors were associated with weight loss or no weight change. Sulfonylureas and glinides were associated with higher rates of hypoglycemia than with placebo (RR range, 4.57-7.50). Conclusion: When added to maximal metformin therapy, all noninsulin antidiabetic drugs were associated with similar HbA1c reductions but differed in their associations with weight gain and risk of hypoglycemia. ©2010 American Medical Association. All rights reserved.

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut | O'Brien J.G.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2011

We present a conformal gravity fit to the 20 largest of a sample of 110 spiral galaxies. We identify the presence of a universal quadratic potential Vκ(r)=-κc2r2/2 with κ=9.54×10 -54cm-2 induced by cosmic inhomogeneities. When V κ(r) is taken in conjunction with both a universal linear potential Vγ0(r)=γ0c2r/2 with γ0=3.06×10-30cm-1 generated by the homogeneous cosmic background and the contribution generated by the local luminous matter in galaxies, the theory then accounts for the rotation curve systematics observed in the entire 110 galaxies, without the need for any dark matter whatsoever. Our study suggests that using dark matter may be nothing more than an attempt to describe global effects in purely local galactic terms. With Vκ(r) being negative, galaxies can only support bound orbits up to distances of order γ0/κ=100kpc, with global physics imposing a limit on the size of galaxies. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Pazy E.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2013

Considering the quantum statistics of the degrees of freedom on the holographic screen, it is shown that the ratio of the number of excited bulk degrees of freedom to the number of excited surface degrees of freedom is given by the modified Newtonian dynamics (MOND) interpolating function μËœ. This relationship is shown to hold also in aquadratic Lagrangian theory and in the extension of MOND to de Sitter space. Based on the relationship between the entropy and the number of degrees of freedom on the holographic screen, a simple expression, relating the MOND interpolating function to the ratio of the two-dimensional entropy to Bekenstein-Hawking entropy, is obtained. In terms of this expression MOND can be viewed as a modification of gravity arising due to a bound on the maximum entropy for the holographic screen. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Mccain C.M.,University of Colorado at Boulder | Colwell R.K.,University of Connecticut
Ecology Letters | Year: 2011

Mountains are centres of global biodiversity, endemism and threatened species. Elevational gradients present opportunities for species currently living near their upper thermal limits to track cooler temperatures upslope in warming climates, but only if changes in precipitation are sufficiently in step with temperature. We model local population extirpation risk for a range of temperature and precipitation scenarios over the next 100years for 16848 vertebrate species populations distributed along 156 elevational gradients. Average population extirpation risks due to warming alone were <5%, but increased 10-fold, on average, when changes in precipitation were also considered. Under the driest scenarios (minimum predicted precipitation), local extirpation risks increased sharply (50-60%) and were especially worrisome for hydrophilic amphibians and montane Latin America (c. 80%). Realistic assessment of risks urgently requires improved monitoring of precipitation, better regional precipitation models and more research on the effects of changes in precipitation on montane distributions. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Unsal M.,San Francisco State University
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2013

We introduce a nonperturbative continuum framework to study the dynamics of quantum field theory (QFT), applied here to the CP(N-1) model. We show that the ambiguities in perturbation theory due to infrared renormalons are exactly canceled by corresponding ambiguities in the nonperturbative sector coming from amplitudes of certain nonperturbative objects: neutral bions and bion-antibions. This provides an explicit weak-coupling interpretation of the IR-renormalons. We use Écalle's theory of resurgent trans-series and the physical principle of continuity to continuously connect QFT to quantum mechanics, while preventing all intervening rapid crossovers or phase transitions. The quantum mechanics contains the germ of all nonperturbative data, e.g., mass gap, of the QFT, all of which are calculable. For CP(N-1), the results obtained at arbitrary N are consistent with lattice and large-N results. The trans-series expansion, in which perturbative and nonperturbative effects are intertwined, encapsulates the multilength-scale nature of the theory, and eliminates all perturbative and nonperturbative ambiguities under consistent analytic continuation of the coupling. A theorem by Pham et al. implies that the mass gap is a resurgent function, for which resummation of the semiclassical expansion yields finite exact results in the weakly coupled domain. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Lee K.-R.,University of Connecticut | Sotzing G.A.,University of Connecticut
Chemical Communications | Year: 2013

We demonstrate a facile controlling of the optical and colorimetric properties of a donor-acceptor conjugated polymer simply by varying the mix ratio of two precursors in a precursor blend. The conversion of a precursor blend results in an entirely new donor-acceptor polymer, distinct from the conjugated polymer of each precursor. Careful optimization of the mix ratio of two precursors results in a black electrochromic polymer. © 2013 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Wick J.Y.,University of Connecticut
Consultant Pharmacist | Year: 2012

Most pharmacists know that aspirin's origins lie with willow bark, but they may be unaware of its role in the development of the pharmaceutical industry. Evolving from salacin (the active ingredient in many plant remedies) to salicylic acid (an analgesic in its own right) to the more effective, less toxic acetylsalicylic acid, this pain reliever cornered the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory market for more than 70 years. It helped the dye industry branch into pharmaceuticals, and is now used in multiple indications. © 2012 American Society of Consultant Pharmacists, Inc. All rights reserved.

Sorosky J.I.,University of Connecticut
Obstetrics and Gynecology | Year: 2012

The epidemiology, prevention, diagnosis, treatment, prognosis, and new International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics staging system of endometrial carcinoma are reviewed. Endometrial cancer has increased 21% in incidence since 2008, and the death rate has increased more than 100% over the past two decades. Precursor lesions of complex hyperplasia with atypia are associated with an endometrial carcinoma in more than 40% of cases. Endometrial cancer in white women occurs at twice the incidence as in black women, but, stage for stage, black women have a less favorable prognosis. Preoperative imaging cannot accurately assess lymph node involvement. Gross examination of depth of myometrial invasion does not have the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, or negative predictive value to select women who can have lymphadenectomy safely omitted surgical procedure. Although surgical staging remains the most accurate method of determining the extent of disease, the therapeutic value of pelvic lymphadenectomy has not been established. The anatomical extent of lymphadenectomy and the number of lymph nodes removed to establish prognostic and therapeutic benefit are controversial. Research efforts are directed at identifying women with early stage endometrial cancer who only require total hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. Minimally invasive surgical techniques have become established as standard therapy for treating women with endometrial cancer. Women with a family history of hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer are at increased risk for endometrial cancer. Conservative treatment to allow for childbearing is possible in select situations. Women with endometrial cancer should be managed by physicians experienced in the complex multimodality treatment of this disease. © 2012 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Malone J.H.,University of Connecticut
Genome Biology | Year: 2015

A new study provides evidence that gene transposition from sex chromosomes to autosomes is a conserved phenomenon across mammalian species that rescues dosage-sensitive genes. © 2015 Malone.

Oblak E.Z.,University of Connecticut | Wright D.L.,University of Connecticut
Organic Letters | Year: 2011

Chemical equations presented. A stereocontrolled approach to a key platensimycin intermediate was achieved from a commercially available furylcarboxylate. Key to our approach is the highly efficient formal [4 + 3] cyclocondensation of a substituted furan with tetrabromocyclopropene along with an intramolecular γ-alkylation to construct the final ring of the caged intermediate. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Katiria Perez G.,University of Connecticut | Cruess D.,University of Connecticut
Health Psychology Review | Year: 2014

The rapidly expanding number of Hispanics living in USA has increased the need for their inclusion in research on physical and mental health. Current studies that have explored health outcomes among Hispanics have often noted an 'epidemiological paradox', in which there is a discrepancy between their minority status and positive health outcomes when compared with other racial/ethnic groups. Certain socio-cultural variables, in particular the value placed on family, have been largely implicated in these findings. This review will provide a summary of the literature exploring familism within the structure of the Hispanic family and its potential impact on health. We will focus on research exploring the plausible impact that family and familism values may have on the physical health (particularly within the HIV, diabetes, and breast cancer literature) and also on health behaviours of Hispanics, as well as its effect on mental health (particularly related to acculturative stress and caregiver stress). Throughout the review, we highlight some of the potential mechanisms by which familism may impact on the health status of Hispanics. We conclude the review by noting some of the clinical and ethical implications of this research, and by offering suggestions for future work in this area. © 2013 Taylor & Francis.

Iskandar A.,University of Connecticut | Thompson P.D.,University of Connecticut
Circulation | Year: 2013

Background-The aorta is exposed to hemodynamic stress during exercise, but whether or not the aorta is larger in athletes is not clear. We performed a systematic literature review and meta-analysis to examine whethere athletes demonstrate increased aortic root dimensions compared with nonathlete controls. Methods and Results-We searched MEDLINE and Scopus from inception through August 12, 2012, for English-language studies reporting the aortic root size in elite athletes. Two investigators independently extracted athlete and study characteristics. A multivariate linear mixed model was used to conduct meta-regression analyses. We identified 71 studies reporting aortic root dimensions in 8564 unique athletes, but only 23 of these studies met our criteria by reporting aortic root dimensions at the aortic valve annulus or sinus of Valsalva in elite athletes (n=5580). Athletes were compared directly with controls (n=727) in 13 studies. On meta-regression, the weighted mean aortic root diameter measured at the sinuses of Valsalva was 3.2 mm (P=0.02) larger in athletes than in the nonathletic controls, whereas aortic root size at the aortic valve annulus was 1.6 mm (P=0.04) greater in athletes than in controls. Conclusions-Elite athletes have a small but significantly larger aortic root diameter at the sinuses of Valsalva and aortic valve annulus, but this difference is minor and clinically insignificant. Clinicians evaluating athletes should know that marked aortic root dilatation likely represents a pathological process and not a physiological adaptation to exercise. © 2012 American Heart Association, Inc.

Smith M.A.,University of Connecticut
Annals of Pharmacotherapy | Year: 2012

The primary care workforce shortage will be magnified by the growing elderly population and expanded coverage as a result of health care reform initiatives. The pharmacist workforce consists of community-based health care professionals who are well trained and highly accessible, yet underutilized. Some health care professionals have advocated that primary care teams should include pharmacists with complementary skills to those of the physician to achieve quality improvement goals and enhance primary care practice efficiencies. New primary care delivery models such as medical homes, health neighborhoods, and accountable care organizations provide opportunities for pharmacists to become integral members of primary care interdisciplinary teams.

Wagner D.L.,University of Connecticut | Van Driesche R.G.,University of Massachusetts Amherst
Annual Review of Entomology | Year: 2010

Endangerment factors are reviewed for 57 U.S. federally listed insects and 116 rare eastern North American lepidopterans to determine the importance of invasive species relative to 15 other recognized endangerment factors. Invasive plants, social insects (especially ants), and vertebrate grazers and predators repeatedly were identified as groups directly or indirectly threatening native insect biodiversity. Among rare eastern North American lepidopterans, the (mostly indirect) consequences of the establishment of the gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) surfaced as a general threat. Remote islands, especially those with high human visitation, stand out as being highly threatened by invasives. In the worst cases, impacts from invasive species cascade through a community and destabilize existing trophic interconnections and alter basic ecosystem properties, changing hydrology, nutrient cycles, soil chemistry, fire susceptibility, and light availability, and precipitate myriad other changes in biotic and abiotic parameters. Invasive ants and herbivorous insects provide some of the most dramatic examples of such insect-induced invasional cascades. © 2010 by Annual Reviews All rights reserved.

Faghri A.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Heat Transfer | Year: 2012

Over the last several decades, several factors have contributed to a major transformation in heat pipe science and technology applications. The first major contribution was the development and advances of new heat pipes, such as loop heat pipes (LHPs), micro and miniature heat pipes, and pulsating heat pipes (PHPs). In addition, there are now many commercial applications that have helped contribute to the recent interest in heat pipes. For example, several million heat pipes are manufactured each month for applications in CPU cooling and laptop computers. Numerical modeling, analysis, and experimental simulation of heat pipes have significantly progressed due to a much greater understanding of various physical phenomena in heat pipes as well as advances in computational and experimental methodologies. A review is presented hereafter concerning the types of heat pipes, heat pipe analysis, and simulations. © 2012 American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Basar G.,University of Maryland University College | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2015

Abstract: The Nekrasov-Shatashvili limit for the low-energy behavior of N=2 and N=2* supersymmetric SU(2) gauge theories is encoded in the spectrum of the Mathieu and Lamé equations, respectively. This correspondence is usually expressed via an all-orders Bohr-Sommerfeld relation, but this neglects non-perturbative effects, the nature of which is very different in the electric, magnetic and dyonic regions. In the gauge theory dyonic region the spectral expansions are divergent, and indeed are not Borel-summable, so they are more properly described by resurgent trans-series in which perturbative and non-perturbative effects are deeply entwined. In the gauge theory electric region the spectral expansions are convergent, but nevertheless there are non-perturbative effects due to poles in the expansion coefficients, and which we associate with worldline instantons. This provides a concrete analog of a phenomenon found recently by Drukker, Mariño and Putrov in the large N expansion of the ABJM matrix model, in which non-perturbative effects are related to complex space-time instantons. In this paper we study how these very different regimes arise from an exact WKB analysis, and join smoothly through the magnetic region. This approach also leads to a simple proof of a resurgence relation found recently by Dunne and Ünsal, showing that for these spectral systems all non-perturbative effects are subtly encoded in perturbation theory, and identifies this with the Picard-Fuchs equation for the quantized elliptic curve. © 2015, The Author(s).

Willen S.S.,University of Connecticut
Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry | Year: 2013

In his seminal volume From Anxiety to Method in the Behavioral Sciences, George Devereux suggests that any therapeutic or scientific engagement with another human being inevitably will be shaped by one's own expectations, assumptions, and reactions. If left unacknowledged, such unspoken and unconscious influences have the capacity to torpedo the interaction; if subjected to critical reflection, however, they can yield insights of great interpretive value and practical significance. Taking these reflections on counter-transference as point of departure, this article explores how a range of unacknowledged assumptions can torpedo good faith efforts to engender "cultural sensitivity" in a required course for American psychiatry residents. The course examined in this paper has been taught for seven successive years by a pair of attending psychiatrists at a longstanding New England residency training program. Despite the instructors' good intentions and ongoing experimentation with content and format, the course has failed repeatedly to meet either residents' expectations or, as the instructors bravely acknowledged, their own. The paper draws upon a year-long ethnographic study, conducted in the late 2000s during the most recent iteration of the course, which involved observation of course sessions, a series of interviews with course instructors, and pre- and post-course interviews with the majority of participating residents. By examining the dynamics of the course from the perspectives of both clinician-instructors and resident-students, the paper illuminates how classroom-based engagement with the clinical implications of culture and difference can run awry when the emotional potency of these issues is not adequately taken into account. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Kelly C.B.,University of Connecticut
Synlett | Year: 2013

(A) Trifluoromethylketones (TFMKs) are valuable synthons both as enzyme inhibitors and as critical intermediates in constructing a variety of fluorinated pharmacons. However, their preparation is complicated by the notoriously difficult to oxidize nature of α-CF3 alcohols, a property that can likely be attributed to their electrondeficient nature. Using 4-NHAc-TEMPO+ BF4 - (Bobbitts salt) in the presence of a pyridyl base, α-CF3 alcohols are readily oxidized in excellent yield to their corresponding TFMKs.6 (B) Bailey et al. reported11 that Bobbitts salt can be utilized to cleave benzyl ethers. Like the cross dehydrogenative couplings (CDCs), this oxidative reaction relies on the formal hydride transfer from the benzylic carbon to the oxoammonium salt, leading to a reactive oxonium ion. This ion then decomposes to the corresponding aldehyde and alcohol via water substitution. The alcohol subsequently undergoes oxidation to a carbonyl derivative. (C) During their previous benzyl ether cleavage study, Bailey et al. noticed that if the resulting alcohol was primary aliphatic, the carbonyl derivative obtained was a carboxylic acid.11 However, if the alcohol was primary benzylic, the aldehyde was obtained instead. Seeking to understand this disparity and capitalize on its potential utility, they explored this transformation using a variety of alcohols.3 Ultimately, they found the rate of oxidation was controlled by the rate of hydration of the intermediate aldehyde.3 (D) Cross dehydrogenative coupling (CDC) has emerged as powerful C-H bond functionalization strategy. Particular attention has been given to CDCs involving C(sp3)-H bonds, likely due to the difficulty in accomplishing this task. A CDC of benzylic C-H bonds adjacent to an oxygen or nitrogen with an enolizable carbonyl, mediated by Fe(OTf)3 and TEMPO+ BF4 -, has recently been reported by Richter and Garca Mancheño.10 This mild method affords the rapid functionalization of biologically relevant structural classes such as isochromanes or tetrahydroisoquinolines. (E) Following the successful development of the previous CDC process, the García Mancheo group pursued another CDC methodology for the synthesis of highly functionalized quinolines.8 Using FeCl3 and TEMPO+ BF4 -, a variety of substituted quinolines could be synthesized via a one-pot dehydrogenative Povarov-oxidation tandem reaction from N-alkyl anilines and styrenes. (F) Ene-triketones represent densely functionalized, versatile building blocks for more complicated systems. However, they are sparsely described in the literature, likely owing to difficulty in their preparation. Starting from 1,3-cyclohexanediones, ene-triketones can be obtained in 40-80% yield via the exhaustive oxidation with Bobbitts salt.7 The reactivity of these oxidized products was explored via Diels-Alder reactions. © Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York.

Dam H.G.,University of Connecticut
Annual Review of Marine Science | Year: 2013

Predicting the response of the biota to global change remains a formidable endeavor. Zooplankton face challenges related to global warming, ocean acidification, the proliferation of toxic algal blooms, and increasing pollution, eutrophication, and hypoxia. They can respond to these changes by phenotypic plasticity or genetic adaptation. Using the concept of the evolution of reaction norms, I address how adaptive responses can be unequivocally discerned from phenotypic plasticity. To date, relatively few zooplankton studies have been designed for such a purpose. As case studies, I review the evidence for zooplankton adaptation to toxic algal blooms, hypoxia, and climate change. Predicting the response of zooplankton to global change requires new information to determine (a) the trade-offs and costs of adaptation, (b) the rates of evolution versus environmental change, (c) the consequences of adaptation to stochastic or cyclic (toxic algal blooms, coastal hypoxia) versus directional (temperature, acidification, open ocean hypoxia) environmental change, and (d) the interaction of selective pressures, and evolutionary and ecological processes, in promoting or hindering adaptation. © 2013 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Gregoire B.G.,University of Connecticut | Clausen J.C.,University of Connecticut
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2011

Runoff quantity and quality from a 248m2 extensive green roof and a control were compared in Connecticut using a paired watershed study. Weekly and individual rain storm samples of runoff and precipitation were analyzed for TKN, NO3+NO2-N, NH3-N, TP, PO4-P, and total and dissolved Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd, Cr, and Hg. The green roof watershed retained 51.4% of precipitation during the study period based on area extrapolation. Overall, the green roof retained 34% more precipitation than predicted by the paired watershed calibration equation. TP and PO4-P mean concentrations in green roof runoff were higher than in precipitation but lower than in runoff from the control. The green roof was a sink for NH3-N, Zn, and Pb, but not for TP, PO4-P, and total Cu. It also reduced the mass export of TN, TKN, NO3+NO2-N, Hg, and dissolved Cu primarily through a reduction in stormwater runoff. Greater than 90% of the total Cu, Hg, and Zn concentrations in the green roof runoff were in the dissolved form. The growing media and slow release fertilizer were probable sources of P and Cu in green roof runoff. Overall, the green roof was effective in reducing stormwater runoff and overall pollutant loading for most water quality contaminants. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Bunk J.A.,West Chester University | Magley V.J.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Occupational Health Psychology | Year: 2013

Theoretically grounded in both the cognitive-motivational-relational theory of emotions and affect events theory, the present research used multiple analytic techniques and positioned appraisals and emotions as key variables in understanding the experience of incivility at work. Data consisted of survey responses from a stratified random sample of 522 U.S. working adults. K-means cluster analyses revealed interindividual differences in cognitive/emotional responding to workplace incivility experiences. In addition, multiple mediation analyses revealed that optimism and emotionality may play important roles in showing why the experience of incivility is related to job-related outcomes. The results help to advance workplace mistreatment research and suggest possible strategies for organizations to maintain civil working environments. © 2013 American Psychological Association.

Colwell R.K.,University of Connecticut | Colwell R.K.,University of Colorado at Boulder | Dunn R.R.,North Carolina State University | Harris N.C.,North Carolina State University
Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics | Year: 2012

The extinction of a single species is rarely an isolated event. Instead, dependent parasites, commensals, and mutualist partners (affiliates) face the risk of coextinction as their hosts or partners decline and fail. Species interactions in ecological networks can transmit the effects of primary extinctions within and between trophic levels, causing secondary extinctions and extinction cascades. Documenting coextinctions is complicated by ignorance of host specificity, limitations of historical collections, incomplete systematics of affiliate taxa, and lack of experimental studies. Host shifts may reduce the rate of coextinctions, but they are poorly understood. In the absence of better empirical records of coextinctions, statistical models estimate the rates of past and future coextinctions, and based on primary extinctions and interactions among species, network models explore extinction cascades. Models predict and historical evidence reveals that the threat of coextinction is Influenced by both host and affiliate traits and is exacerbated by other threats, including habitat loss, climate change, and invasive species. © 2012 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Gupta A.,University of Minnesota | Zhdanov D.,University of Connecticut
MIS Quarterly: Management Information Systems | Year: 2012

Managed security service provider (MSSP) networks are a form of collaboration where several firms share resources such as diagnostics, prevention tools, and policies to provide security for their computer networks. While the decision to outsource the security operations of an organization may seem counterintuitive, there are potential benefits from joining an MSSP network that include pooling of risk and access to more security-enabling resources and expertise. We examine structural results explaining the reasons firms join an MSSP network, and characterize the growth of MSSP network size under different forms of ownership (monopoly versus consortium). We find that the need for an initial investment in MSSP networks (which is necessary to overcome the stalling effect) only affects the optimal network size for a consortium but has no impact on the optimal network size for a profit-maximizing monopolist. Our results provide an explanation why the majority of the MSSPs are for-profit entities and consortium-based MSSPs are less common. Such a market structure can be attributed to the potential for larger size by the for-profit MSSP owner combined with beneficial pricing structure and a lack of growth uncertainty for the early clients.

Zarnetske P.L.,Yale University | Skelly D.K.,Yale University | Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut
Science | Year: 2012

A focus on species interactions may improve predictions of the effects of climate change on ecosystems.

Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut
Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society | Year: 2013

Ecological and evolutionary mechanisms are increasingly thought to shape local community dynamics. Here, I evaluate if the local adaptation of a meso-predator to an apex predator alters local food webs. The marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum) is an apex predator that consumes both the spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) and shared zooplankton prey. Common garden experiments reveal that spotted salamander populations which co-occur with marbled salamanders forage more intensely than those that face other predator species. These foraging differences, in turn, alter the diversity, abundance and composition of zooplankton communities in common garden experiments and natural ponds. Locally adapted spotted salamanders exacerbate prey biomass declines associated with apex predation, but dampen the top-down effects of apex predation on prey diversity. Countergradient selection on foraging explains why locally adapted spotted salamanders exacerbate prey biomass declines. The two salamander species prefer different prey species, which explains why adapted spotted salamanders buffer changes in prey composition owing to apex predation. Results suggest that local adaptation can strongly mediate effects from apex predation on local food webs. Community ecologists might often need to consider the evolutionary history of populations to understand local diversity patterns, food web dynamics, resource gradients and their responses to disturbance.

Vollmer R.L.,University of Connecticut | Mobley A.R.,University of Connecticut
Appetite | Year: 2013

With recommendations to include parents as targets for childhood obesity interventions, there is a need to review the relationship of general parenting influences on childhood obesity. Therefore, the aim of this review is to examine the existing literature regarding the influence of parenting style and/or feeding styles on childhood obesogenic behaviors and body weight. Research articles related to parenting style (n= 40) and parental feeding style (n= 11) were identified and reviewed. An authoritative style appears to be the most protective parenting and feeding style while the indulgent feeding style is consistently associated with negative health outcomes. Overall, results for parenting style studies are inconsistent due to differences in conceptualization and measurement, while the results for feeding styles are much more cohesive. The literature is lacking in the ability to describe the interplay between parenting and feeding styles and child obesity risk. Recommendations for future research and interventions are discussed in regards to feeding style and influences on childhood obesity. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Unsal M.,SFSU
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2012

This work is a step towards a non-perturbative continuum definition of quantum field theory (QFT), beginning with asymptotically free two dimensional non-linear sigma-models, using recent ideas from mathematics and QFT. The ideas from mathematics are resurgence theory, the trans-series framework, and Borel-Écalle resummation. The ideas from QFT use continuity on R 1 × SL 1, i.e., the absence of any phase transition as N → ∞ or rapid-crossovers for finite-N, and the small-L weak coupling limit to render the semi-classical sector well-defined and calculable. We classify semi-classical configurations with actions 1/N (kink-instantons), 2/N (bions and bi-kinks), in units where the 2d instanton action is normalized to one. Perturbation theory possesses the IR-renormalon ambiguity that arises due to non-Borel summability of the large-orders perturbation series (of Gevrey-1 type), for which a microscopic cancellation mechanism was unknown. This divergence must be present because the corresponding expansion is on a singular Stokes ray in the complexified coupling constant plane, and the sum exhibits the Stokes phenomenon crossing the ray. We show that there is also a non-perturbative ambiguity inherent to certain neutral topological molecules (neutral bions and bion-anti-bions) in the semiclassical expansion. We find a set of "confluence equations" that encode the exact cancellation of the two different type of ambiguities. There exists a resurgent behavior in the semi-classical trans-series analysis of the QFT, whereby subleading orders of exponential terms mix in a systematic way, canceling all ambiguities. We show that a new notion of "graded resurgence triangle" is necessary to capture the path integral approach to resurgence, and that graded resurgence underlies a potentially rigorous definition of general QFTs. The mass gap and the Θ angle dependence of vacuum energy are calculated from first principles, and are in accord with large-N and lattice results. © 2012 SISSA, Trieste, Italy.

Pask A.J.,University of Connecticut
Chromosome Research | Year: 2012

Estrogen is both necessary and sufficient to drive ovarian development in many nonmammalian vertebrates. However, the role of estrogen in the mammalian gonad is less clear. Mouse ovarian development can proceed in the absence of estrogen signaling, but granulosa cell fate cannot be maintained. Estrogen receptor expression is conserved in the indifferent gonad of all mammals and many species also express the CYP19 gene that encodes aromatase, in the early ovary. Furthermore, estrogen is sufficient to drive ovarian development of the indifferent gonad in marsupial mammals. Here we review the function of estrogen in the mammalian gonad and propose a model for its action in establishing and maintaining ovarian somatic cell fate. © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Morris J.B.,University of Connecticut
Pharmacology and Therapeutics | Year: 2012

The lung is a route of entry and also a target site for inhaled vapors, therefore, knowledge of the total absorbed dose and/or the dose absorbed in each airway during inhalation exposure is essential. Vapor absorption characteristics result primarily from the fact that vapors demonstrate equilibrium/saturation behavior in fluids. Thus, during inhalation exposures blood and airway tissue vapor concentrations increase to a steady state value and increase no further no matter how long the exposure. High tissue concentrations can be obtained with highly soluble vapors, thus solubility, as measured by blood:air partition coefficient, is a fundamentally important physical/chemical characteristic of vapors. While it is classically thought that vapor absorption occurs only in the alveoli it is now understood that this is not the case. Soluble vapors can be efficiently absorbed in the airways themselves and do not necessarily penetrate to the alveolar level. Such vapors are more likely to injure the proximal than distal airways because that is the site of the greatest delivered dose. There are substantial species differences in airway vapor absorption between laboratory animals and humans making interpretation of laboratory animal inhalation toxicity data difficult. Airway absorption is dependent on vapor solubility and is enhanced by local metabolism and/or direct reaction within airway tissues. Modern simulation models that incorporate terms for solubility, metabolism, and reaction rate accurately predict vapor absorption patterns in both animals and humans and have become essential tools for understanding the pharmacology and toxicology of airborne vapors. © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Wales N.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Human Evolution | Year: 2012

Although direct evidence for Neanderthal clothing is essentially nonexistent, information about Paleolithic clothing could provide insights into the biological, technological, and behavioral capabilities of Neanderthals. This paper takes a new approach to understanding Neanderthal clothing through the collection and analysis of clothing data for 245 recent hunter-gatherer groups. These data are tested against environmental factors to infer what clothing humans tend to wear under different conditions. Beta regression is used to predict the proportion of the body covered by clothing according to a location's mean temperature of the coldest month, average wind speed, and annual rainfall. In addition, logistic regression equations predict clothing use on specific parts of the body. Neanderthal clothing patterns are modeled across Europe and over a range of Pleistocene environmental conditions, thereby providing a new appreciation of Paleolithic behavioral variability. After accounting for higher tolerances to cold temperatures, it is predicted that some Neanderthals would have covered up to 80% of their bodies during the winter, probably with non-tailored clothing. It is also likely that some populations covered the hands and feet. In comparison with Neanderthals, Upper Paleolithic modern humans are found to have worn more sophisticated clothing. Importantly, these predictions shed new light on the relationship between Neanderthal extinction and their simple clothing. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut | O'Brien J.G.,Wentworth Institute of Technology
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2012

We apply the conformal gravity theory to a sample of 111 spiral galaxies whose rotation curve data points extend well beyond the optical disk. With no free parameters other than galactic mass-to-light ratios, the theory is able to account for the systematics that is observed in this entire set of rotation curves without the need for any dark matter at all. In previous applications of the theory, a central role was played by a universal linear potential term V(r)=γ 0c2r/2 that is generated through the effect of cosmology on individual galaxies, with the coefficient γ 0=3. 06×10 -30cm -1 being of cosmological magnitude. Because the current sample is so big and encompasses some specific galaxies whose data points go out to quite substantial distances from galactic centers, we are able to identify an additional globally induced universal term in the data, a quadratic V(r)=-κc2r2/2 term that is induced by inhomogeneities in the cosmic background. With κ being found to be of magnitude κ=9.54×10 -54cm -2, through study of the motions of particles contained within galaxies we are thus able to both detect the presence of a global de Sitter-like component and provide a specific value for its strength. Our study suggests that invoking dark matter may be nothing more than an attempt to describe global physics effects such as these in purely local galactic terms. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2012

We present the first steps needed for an analysis of the perturbations that occur in the cosmology associated with the conformal gravity theory. We discuss the implications of conformal invariance for perturbative coordinate gauge choices and show that in the conformal theory the trace of the metric fluctuation kinematically decouples from the first-order gravitational fluctuation equations. We determine the equations that describe first-order metric fluctuations around the illustrative conformal to flat de Sitter background. Via a conformal transformation, we show that such fluctuations can be constructed from fluctuations around a flat background, even though the fluctuations themselves are associated with a perturbative geometry that is not itself conformal to flat. We extend the analysis to fluctuations around other cosmologically relevant backgrounds, such as the conformal to flat Robertson-Walker background, and find tensor fluctuations that grow far more rapidly than those that occur in the analogous standard case. We show that while the standard gravity tensor fluctuations around a de Sitter background are also fluctuation solutions in the conformal theory, in the conformal case they do not carry energy. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Graveley B.R.,University of Connecticut
Cell | Year: 2011

In this issue of Cell, Gabut and colleagues (2011) identify a new splice variant of FOXP1 that directly regulates the expression of pluripotency genes. It endows human embryonic stem cells with their pluripotent nature and is required for the reprogramming of somatic cells to induced pluripotent stem cells. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

Che A.,University of Connecticut | Girgenti M.J.,University of Connecticut | Loturco J.,University of Connecticut
Biological Psychiatry | Year: 2014

Background Variants in dyslexia-associated genes, including DCDC2, have been linked to altered neocortical activation, suggesting that dyslexia associated genes might play as yet unspecified roles in neuronal physiology. Methods Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were used to compare the electrophysiological properties of regular spiking pyramidal neurons of neocortex in Dcdc2 knockout (KO) and wild-type mice. Ribonucleic acid sequencing and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction were performed to identify and characterize changes in gene expression in Dcdc2 KOs. Results Neurons in KOs showed increased excitability and decreased temporal precision in action potential firing. The RNA sequencing screen revealed that the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) subunit Grin2B was elevated in Dcdc2 KOs, and an electrophysiological assessment confirmed a functional increase in spontaneous NMDAR-mediated activity. Remarkably, the decreased action potential temporal precision could be restored in mutants by treatment with either the NMDAR antagonist (2R)-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid or the NMDAR 2B subunit-specific antagonist Ro 25-6981. Conclusions These results link the function of the dyslexia-associated gene Dcdc2 to spike timing through activity of NMDAR. © 2014 Society of Biological Psychiatry.

Frank T.D.,University of Connecticut
Physics Letters, Section A: General, Atomic and Solid State Physics | Year: 2011

We study the stability of solutions of a particular type of multistable selection equations proposed by Starke, Schanz and Haken in the case of an inhomogeneous spectrum of growth parameters. We determine how the stability of feasible solutions depends on the inhomogeneity of the spectrum. We show that the strength of the competitive interaction between feasible solutions can act as a control parameter that induces bifurcations reducing the degree of multistability. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Banerjee U.,University of Connecticut | Hadden M.K.,University of Connecticut
Expert Opinion on Drug Discovery | Year: 2014

Introduction: The Hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway is known to be dysregulated in several forms of cancer. Hence, specifically targeting this signaling cascade is a valid and promising strategy for successful therapeutic intervention. Several components within the Hh pathway have been proven to be druggable; however, challenges in the discovery and development process for small molecules targeting this pathway have been identified.Areas covered: This review details both the current state and future potential of Hh pathway inhibitors as anticancer chemotherapeutics that target a variety of human malignancies.Expert opinion: The initial development of Hh pathway inhibitors focused on small-molecule antagonists of Smoothened, a transmembrane protein that is a key regulator of pathway signaling. More recently, efforts to identify and develop inhibitors of pathway signaling that function through alternate mechanisms have been increasing. However, none of these have advanced into clinical trials. Further, early evidence suggesting the broad application of Hh pathway inhibitors as a monotherapy in a wide range of human cancers has not been validated. The potential for Hh pathway inhibitors as combination therapy has demonstrated promising preclinical results. However, more research to identify rational drug combinations to fully explore the potential of this anticancer drug class is warranted. © Informa UK, Ltd.

Goodwin R.A.,University of Connecticut | Gage D.J.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Bacteriology | Year: 2014

In Sinorhizobium meliloti, catabolite repression is influenced by a noncanonical nitrogen-type phosphotransferase system (PTSNtr). In this PTSNtr, the protein HPr is phosphorylated on histidine-22 by the enzyme EINtr and the flux of phosphate through this residue onto downstream proteins leads to an increase in succinate-mediated catabolite repression (SMCR). In order to explore the molecular determinants of HPr phosphorylation by EINtr, both proteins were purified and the activity of EINtr was measured. Experimentally determined kinetic parameters of EINtr activity were significantly slower than those determined for the carbohydrate-type EI in Escherichia coli. Enzymatic assays showed that glutamine, a signal of nitrogen availability in many Gram-negative bacteria, strongly inhibits EINtr. Binding experiments using the isolated GAF domain of EINtr (EIGAF) showed that it is the domain responsible for detection of glutamine. EINtr activity was not affected by α-ketoglutarate, and no binding between the EIGAF and α-ketoglutarate could be detected. These data suggest that in S. melilloti, EINtr phosphorylation of HPr is regulated by signals from both carbon metabolism (phosphoenolpyruvate) and nitrogen metabolism (glutamine). © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

Tatano Beck C.,University of Connecticut
Qualitative Health Research | Year: 2011

Integrating results from multiple analytic approaches used in a research program by the same researcher is a type of metasynthesis that has not often been reported in the literature. In this article the findings of one type of qualitative synthesis approach, a metaethnography, of six qualitative studies on birth trauma and its resulting posttraumatic stress disorder from my program of research are presented. This metaethnography provides a wide-angle lens to view and interpret the far-reaching, stinging tentacles of this often invisible phenomenon that new mothers experience. I used Noblit and Hare's seven-step approach for synthesizing the findings of qualitative studies. The original trigger of traumatic childbirth resulted in six amplifying feedback loops, four of which were reinforcing (positive direction), and two which were balancing (negative direction). Leverage points that identify where pressure in the amplifying causal loop can break the feedback loop where necessary are discussed. © The Author(s) 2011.

Chang M.W.,University of Connecticut | Nakrani R.,University of Connecticut
Pediatrics | Year: 2014

Methylchloroisothiazolinone/methylisothiazolinone (MCI/MI) is a combination preservative used in personal care and household products and is a common cause of allergic contact dermatitis (ACD). Recently, MI alone, without MCI, has been increasingly used in consumer products in attempts to minimize allergic reactions. Wet wipes are extensively tested and traditionally believed to be innocuous. MI in wet wipes ("baby wipes") has not been previously reported to cause ACD in children in the United States. Only 1 previous report of ACD in a child in Belgium has been recently reported. We report 6 children with chronic, perianal/buttock, and facial eczematous dermatitis, refractory to multiple topical and oral antibiotics and corticosteroids. All tested positive to MCI/MI on patch testing. None wore diapers. All patients had been using wet wipes containing MI (without MCI) to affected areas. Discontinuation of wipes resulted in rapid and complete resolution. This is the first report of pediatric ACD to MI in wet wipes in the United States, and the largest series to date. ACD to MI in wet wipes is frequently misdiagnosed as eczema, impetigo, or psoriasis. Wet wipes are increasingly marketed in personal care products for all ages, and MI exposure and sensitization will likely increase. Dermatitis of the perianal, buttock, facial, and hand areas with a history of wet wipe use should raise suspicion of ACD to MI and prompt appropriate patch testing. Rapid resolution occurs after the allergen exposure is eliminated. All isothiozolinones should be avoided in personal care and household products for these patients. Copyright © 2014 by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Javanainen J.,University of Connecticut | Ruostekoski J.,University of Southampton
Optics Express | Year: 2016

With ready access to massive computer clusters we may now study light propagation in a dense cold atomic gas by means of basically exact numerical simulations. We report on a direct comparison between traditional optics, that is, electrodynamics of a polarizable medium, and numerical simulations in an elementary problem of light propagating through a slab of matter. The standard optics fails already at quite low atom densities, and the failure becomes dramatic when the average interatomic separation is reduced to around k-1, where k is the wave number of resonant light. The difference between the two solutions originates from correlations between the atoms induced by light-mediated dipole-dipole interactions. © 2016 Optical Society of America.

Shin D.,University of Connecticut | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Optics Letters | Year: 2012

In this Letter, we propose a multiperspective three-dimensional (3D) imaging system using axially distributed stereo image sensing. In this proposed method, the stereo camera is translated along its optical axis and multiple axial elemental image pairs for a 3D scene are collected. The captured elemental images are reconstructed in 3D using a computational reconstruction algorithmbased on ray back-projection. The proposed method is applied to partially occluded object visualization. Optical experiments are performed to verify the approach. © 2012 Optical Society of America.

Santoferrara L.F.,University of Connecticut
ISME Journal | Year: 2016

Our knowledge on microbial biogeography depends on the way we define and study diversity. In contrast to most microbes, some protist lineages have conspicuous structures that allow comparisons of diversity concepts and measures—those based on molecules and those based on morphology. We analyzed a group of shell-bearing planktonic ciliates, the tintinnids, in a coast-to-ocean gradient using high-throughput sequencing and microscopy. First, we compared molecular operational taxonomic units (OTUs) and morphospecies in terms of assemblage composition, distribution and relationships with the environment. OTUs revealed potentially novel and rare taxa, while morphospecies showed clearer correlations with environmental factors, and both approaches coincided in supporting a coastal versus oceanic pattern. Second, we explored which processes influence assembly across the environmental gradient examined. Assemblage fluctuations were associated with significant distance–decay and changes in morphospecies size and prey proxies, thus suggesting niche partitioning as a key structuring mechanism. Our conclusion is that molecules and morphologies generally agreed, but they provided complementary data, the first revealing hidden diversity, and the latter making better connections between distribution patterns and ecological processes. This highlights the importance of linking genotypes and phenotypes (using multidisciplinary analyses and/or reliable databases of barcoded species), to understand the diversity, biogeography and ecological roles of microbes.The ISME Journal advance online publication, 5 February 2016; doi:10.1038/ismej.2015.224. © 2016 International Society for Microbial Ecology

Fournier G.P.,University of Connecticut | Gogarten J.P.,University of Connecticut
Molecular Biology and Evolution | Year: 2010

The origin of the genetic code and the rooting of the tree of life (ToL) are two of the most challenging problems in the study of life's early evolution. Although both have been the focus of numerous investigations utilizing a variety of methods, until now, each problem has been addressed independently. Typically, attempts to root the ToL have relied on phylogenies of genes with ancient duplications, which are subject to artifacts of tree reconstruction and horizontal gene transfer, or specific physiological characters believed to be primitive, which are often based on subjective criteria. Here, we demonstrate a unique method for rooting based on the identification of amino acid usage biases comprising the residual signature of a more primitive genetic code. Using a phylogenetic tree of concatenated ribosomal proteins, our analysis of amino acid compositional bias detects a strong and unique signal associated with the early expansion of the genetic code, placing the root of the translation machinery along the bacterial branch. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Thies M.,Friedrich - Alexander - University, Erlangen - Nuremberg
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

We find the general solution to the time-dependent Hartree-Fock problem for the Gross-Neveu models, with both discrete (GN2) and continuous [Nambu-Jona-Lasinio (NJL2)] chiral symmetry. We find new multibaryon, multibreather, and twisted breather solutions, and show that all GN2 baryons and breathers are composed of constituent twisted kinks of the NJL 2 model. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Beck C.T.,University of Connecticut
MCN The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing | Year: 2013

Purpose: Shoulder dystocia is one of the most terrifying of obstetric emergencies. In this secondary analysis of two qualitative studies, the experiences of shoulder dystocia are compared and contrasted from two perspectives: the mothers and the labor and delivery nurses. Method: In the fi rst study mothers' experiences of shoulder dystocia and caring for their children with obstetric brachial plexus injuries were explored. The second study explored secondary traumatic stress in labor and delivery nurses due to exposure to traumatic births. Krippendorff's content analysis technique of clustering was used to identify data that could be grouped together into themes. Results: It was striking how similar the perspectives of mothers and their nurses were regard- ing a shoulder dystocia birth. Four themes emerged from the content analysis of these two data sets: (1) in the midst of the obstetric nightmare; (2) reeling from the trauma that just transpired; (3) enduring heartbreak: the heavy toll on mothers; and (4) haunted by memories: the heavy toll on nurses. Clinical Implications: Providing emotional support to the mother during shoulder dystocia births and afterward in the postpartum period has been acknowledged. What now needs to be added to best practices for shoulder dystocia are interventions for the nurses themselves. Support for labor and delivery nurses who are involved in this obstetric nightmare is critical. Key words: Brachial plexus injuries; Secondary analysis; Secondary traumatic stress; Shoulder dystocia; Qualitative research. Copyright © 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Unauthorized reproduction of this article is prohibited.

Hill R.A.,University of Connecticut | Hill R.A.,Yale University | Nishiyama A.,University of Connecticut
GLIA | Year: 2014

NG2 cells (polydendrocytes) are the fourth major non-neuronal cell type in the central nervous system parenchyma. They exhibit diverse properties, ranging from their well-established role as oligodendrocyte precursors to their ability to respond to neurotransmitters released by synaptic and non-synaptic mechanisms. The functional diversity of NG2 cells has prompted the question of whether they represent a single cellular entity or multiple distinct cell populations. This review first summarizes recent findings on the nature and mechanism underlying the diversity of NG2 cells with regard to their proliferative and differentiation behavior. This will be followed by a synopsis of observations on how their microenvironment, particularly neuronal activity, influences their dynamic behavior, and how these changes in NG2 cells could in turn influence neural function and animal behavior. GLIA 2014;62:1195-1210 Main Points: NG2 cells exhibit region- and age-dependent diversity in their behavior. Cell intrinsic and extracellular mechanisms contribute to the diversity. Neuronal activity influences their behavior leading to fine-tuning of myelination. © 2014 The Authors. Glia Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Roychoudhuri C.,University of Connecticut
Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering | Year: 2011

Based on attempts to resolve the problem of various self contradictory assumptions behind the prevailing belief on single photon interference, we have analyzed the process steps behind our experimental measurements and named the process as the Interaction Process Mapping Epistemology (IPM-E). This has helped us recognize that the quantum mechanical Measurement Problem has a much universal and deeper root in nature. Our scientific theorization process suffers from a Perpetual Information Challenge (PIC), which cannot be overcome by elegant and/or sophisticated mathematical theories alone. Iterative imaginative application of IPM-E needs to be used as a metaphorical analytical continuation to fill up the missing information gaps. IPM-E has also guided us to recognize the generic NIW-principle (Non-Interaction of Waves) in the linear domain, not explicitly recognized in current books and literature. Superposition effects become manifest through light-matter interactions. Detecting dipoles gets stimulated by multiple superposed beams; it sums the simultaneous multiple stimulations into a single resultant undulation, which then guides the resultant energy exchange. The consequent transformation in the detector corresponds to observed fringes. They neither represent interference of light; nor represent selective arrival or non-arrival of photons on the detector. Photons do not possess any force of mutual interaction to generate their redistribution. Implementation of IPM-E requires us to recognize our subjective interpretation propensity with which we are burdened due to our evolutionary successes. © 2011 SPIE.

Calle M.C.,University of Connecticut | Fernandez M.L.,University of Connecticut
Diabetes and Metabolism | Year: 2012

Low-grade inflammation is a common feature in subjects with type 2 diabetes (T2D). Heart disease, the metabolic syndrome and T2D all have in common the increased concentration of circulatory cytokines as a result of inflammation. Inflammatory cytokines are produced by different cell types and secreted into the circulation, where they regulate different tissues through their local, central and peripheral actions. This review focuses on C-reactive protein (CRP), a well-established marker of the development of inflammation, on tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α, an inflammatory marker strongly associated with diabetes, and on adiponectin, a cytokine produced by adipose tissue and associated with insulin sensitivity. While it is clear from the literature that these cytokines play a major role in the development of T2D or, in the case of adiponectin, its prevention, the best strategy for favourably altering the inflammatory response is still a matter of debate. © 2012 Elsevier Masson SAS.

Davidson K.W.,University of Connecticut
Social Work in Health Care | Year: 2013

Major economic, political, demographic, social, and operational system factors are prompting evolutionary changes in health care delivery. Of particular significance, the "graying of America" promises new challenges and opportunities for health care social work. At the same time, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, evolution of Accountable Care Organizations, and an emphasis on integrated, transdisciplinary, person-centered care represent fundamental shifts in service delivery with implications for social work practice and education. This article identifies the aging shift in American demography, its impact on health policy legislation, factors influencing fundamentally new service delivery paradigms, and opportunities of the profession to address the health disparities and care needs of an aging population. It underscores the importance of social work inclusion in integrated health care delivery and offers recommendations for practice education. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Letcher S.G.,University of Connecticut
Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society | Year: 2010

The phylogenetic structure of ecological communities can shed light on assembly processes, but the focus of phylogenetic structure research thus far has been on mature ecosystems. Here, I present the first investigation of phylogenetic community structure during succession. In a replicated chronosequence of 30 sites in northeastern Costa Rica, I found strong phylogenetic overdispersion at multiple scales: species present at local sites were a non-random assemblage, more distantly related than chance would predict. Phylogenetic overdispersion was evident when comparing the species present at each site with the regional species pool, the species pool found in each age category to the regional pool or the species present at each site to the pool of species found in sites of that age category. Comparing stem size classes within each age category, I found that during early succession, phylogenetic overdispersion is strongest in small stems. Overdispersion strengthens and spreads into larger size classes as succession proceeds, corroborating an existing model of forest succession. This study is the first evidence that succession leaves a distinct signature in the phylogenetic structure of communities.

Liu Y.,University of Connecticut | Mustain W.E.,University of Connecticut
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2013

Sn-doped indium oxide (ITO) nanoparticles (NPs) were conceived as a high stability noncarbon support for Pt NPs, and the activity and stability of Pt/ITO for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) were probed. Sn was employed as the In2O3 dopant to exploit the strong interaction between Sn and Pt that was previously reported to enhance the activity of Pt on Pt/SnO 2, while concomitantly avoiding the intrinsic stability limitations of SnO2 and leveraging the high stability of bulk In 2O3 at ORR relevant potentials. The mass activity of Pt was extremely high on Pt/ITO, 621 ± 31 mA/mgPt, which far exceeded the 2015 DOE goal for Pt mass activity of 440 mA/mgPt. The enhanced ORR activity was linked to the faceting of the Pt NPs, which overwhelmingly consisted of Pt (111) facets. The stability of Pt/ITO was also very impressive, with the electrochemically active area unchanged and the Pt half wave potential shifting only 4 mV over 1000 potential cycles to 1.4 V vs RHE, a very harsh condition for ORR electrocatalysts where state-of-the-art Pt/C electrocatalysts typically show very poor stability. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Most evidence for hydraulic redistribution is from ecosystems in relatively dry regions. Recent data indicate that hydraulic redistribution (HR) may also exist in the central Amazon forest. Assuming that HR can take place in all plant types in the Amazon region, this numerical modeling study examines how the hydrological impact of HR varies spatially and temporally. HR influences transpiration and total evapotranspiration the most in places and during seasons of intermediate soil wetness. Although HR increases the long-term mean of dry season transpiration, it can reduce transpiration toward the end of the dry season in extremely dry years when the HR-induced acceleration of moisture depletion leaves less water available later in the dry season. Deep roots may, however, mitigate some of this negative impact. This HR-induced reduction of water availability is contrary to the general notion of HR increasing plant water availability; the spatial and temporal variation of the HR impact documented in this study may help interpret field observational data and locate future field experiment sites to evaluate the HR hypothesis in the Amazon region. Copyright 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.

Loguidice A.,University of Connecticut | Boelsterli U.A.,University of Connecticut
Hepatology | Year: 2011

Acetaminophen (APAP) is safe at therapeutic dosage but can cause severe hepatotoxicity if used at overdose. The mechanisms of injury are not yet fully understood, but previous reports had suggested that the mitochondrial permeability transition (mPT) may be involved in triggering hepatocellular necrosis. We aimed at inhibiting mitochondrial cyclophilin D (CypD), a key regulator of the mPT, as a potential therapeutic target in APAP hepatotoxicity. Wildtype mice treated with a high dose of APAP (600 mg/kg, intraperitoneal) developed typical centrilobular necrosis, which could not, however, be prevented by cotreatment with the selective CypD inhibitor, Debio 025 (alisporivir, DEB025, a nonimmunosuppressive cyclosporin A analog). Similarly, genetic ablation of mitochondrial CypD in Ppif-null mice did not afford protection from APAP hepatotoxicity. To determine whether APAP-induced peroxynitrite stress might directly activate mitochondrial permeabilization, independently of the CypD-regulated mPT, we coadministered the peroxynitrite decomposition catalyst Fe-TMPyP (10 mg/kg, intraperitoneal, 90 minutes prior to APAP) to CypD-deficient mice. Liver injury was greatly attenuated by Fe-TMPyP pretreatment, and mitochondrial 3-nitrotyrosine adduct levels (peroxynitrite marker) were decreased. Acetaminophen treatment increased both the cytosolic and mitochondria-associated P-JNK levels, but the c-jun-N-terminal kinase (JNK) signaling inhibitor SP600125 was hepatoprotective in wildtype mice only, indicating that the JNK pathway may not be critically involved in the absence of CypD. Conclusion:: These data support the concept that an overdose of APAP results in liver injury that is refractory to pharmacological inhibition or genetic depletion of CypD and that peroxynitrite-mediated cell injury predominates in the absence of CypD. © 2011 American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.

Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2013

Ecological and evolutionary mechanisms are increasingly thought to shape local community dynamics. Here, I evaluate if the local adaptation of a meso-predator to an apex predator alters local food webs. The marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum) is an apex predator that consumes both the spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) and shared zooplankton prey. Common garden experiments reveal that spotted salamander populations which co-occur with marbled salamanders forage more intensely than those that face other predator species. These foraging differences, in turn, alter the diversity, abundance and composition of zooplankton communities in common garden experiments and natural ponds. Locally adapted spotted salamanders exacerbate prey biomass declines associated with apex predation, but dampen the top-down effects of apex predation on prey diversity. Countergradient selection on foraging explains why locally adapted spotted salamanders exacerbate prey biomass declines. The two salamander species prefer different prey species, which explains why adapted spotted salamanders buffer changes in prey composition owing to apex predation. Results suggest that local adaptation can strongly mediate effects from apex predation on local food webs. Community ecologists might often need to consider the evolutionary history of populations to understand local diversity patterns, food web dynamics, resource gradients and their responses to disturbance. © 2013 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

Padala S.,University of Connecticut | Thompson P.D.,Hartford Hospital
Atherosclerosis | Year: 2012

Background: Hydroxy-methyl-glutaryl Co-A reductase (HMGCR) inhibitors or statins are a well recognized cause of a variety of skeletal myopathic effects which generally resolve on stopping the medication. Recent reports, however, suggest that statins are associated with a unique autoimmune myopathy wherein symptoms persist or even progress after statin discontinuation and require immunosuppressive therapy. We performed a systematic review to examine the association of statins with inflammatory (dermatomyositis/polymyositis) and necrotizing myopathies. Methods: We searched PubMed, Ovid and Scopus for English language articles addressing statin associated inflammatory and necrotizing myopathies. Given the paucity of cases, we extended the search to include articles in all languages. Results: The search yielded 14 articles reporting a possible association of statins with inflammatory myopathies describing 10 cases of polymyositis and 14 cases of dermatomyositis, and 4 articles reporting a possible association of statins with necrotizing myopathies describing 63 cases. One study identified a unique antibody directed against HMGCR in patients with necrotizing myopathy. Systemic immunosuppressive therapy was required in majority of these cases for resolution of symptoms. Conclusion: Statins have recently been associated with a variety of inflammatory myopathies including polymyositis, dermatomyositis, and a necrotizing myopathy. The association of statins with necrotizing myopathy is strengthened by the discovery that the serum of some of these patients contains an anti-HMGCR antibody. This suggests that statins can cause or unmask an immune mediated myopathy. © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Kuratnik A.,University of Connecticut | Giardina C.,University of Connecticut
Biochemical Pharmacology | Year: 2013

Recently developed cell culture protocols have allowed for the derivation of multi-cellular structures dubbed intestinal "organoids" from embryonic stem cells (ESCs), induced pluripotent stem cells (IPSCs), and adult intestinal stem cells (ISCs). These structures resemble in vivo intestinal crypts, both in structure and developmental processes, and can be grown quickly and in relatively large quantities. Although much research has focused on developing intestinal organoids for tissue repair, more immediate applications include high-throughput screening for agents that target intestinal epithelium. Here we describe current methods for deriving mouse and human intestinal organoids and discuss some applications aimed at developing novel therapies or preventive agents for diseases of the lower GI tract such as inflammatory bowel diseases and colorectal cancer. © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Canalis E.,Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing | Canalis E.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism | Year: 2010

Skeletal anabolic agents enhance bone formation, which is determined by the number and function of osteoblasts. Cell number is controlled by factors that regulate the replication, differentiation, and death of cells of the osteoblastic lineage, whereas cell function is controlled by signals acting on the mature osteoblast. Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP) and Wnt induce the differentiation of mesenchymal cells toward osteoblasts, and IGF-I enhances the function of mature osteoblasts. The activity of BMP, Wnt, and IGF-I is controlled by proteins that, by binding to the growth factor or to its receptors, can antagonize its effects. Changes in the expression or binding affinity of these extracellular antagonists can be associated with increased or decreased bone formation and bone mass. Novel approaches to anabolic therapies for osteoporosis may include the use of factors with anabolic properties, or the neutralization of a growth factor antagonist. Selected approaches include the use of neutralizing antibodies to Wnt antagonists, the enhancement of BMP signaling by proteasome inhibitors, or the use of activin soluble receptors, IGF-I, or PTH analogs. An anabolic agent needs to be targeted specifically to the skeleton to avoid unwanted non-skeletal effects and ensure safety. Clinical trials are being conducted to test the long-term effectiveness and safety of novel bone anabolic agents. Copyright © 2010 by The Endocrine Society.

Das M.,University of Connecticut | Das D.K.,University of Connecticut
Molecular Aspects of Medicine | Year: 2010

Resveratrol (3,4′,5-trihydroxystilbene) is a member of natural, plant-derived chemicals known as polyphenols and is attracting increased attention due to its diverse health benefits especially in case of cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and neurological problems. Despite impressive gains in diagnosis and treatment, cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains a serious clinical problem and threat to public health. Resveratrol possesses potent antioxidant properties and has been shown to decrease low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol oxidation and platelet aggregation. This compound also possesses a range of additional cardioprotective and vasoprotective properties including antiatherosclerotic and vasorelaxation action. Resveratrol also has the capacity to interact with multiple molecular targets, which involve diverse intracellular pathways. Most well-known is the ability of resveratrol to activate sirtuins, a class of NAD+-dependent deacetylase that affect multiple transcription factors and other protein targets. Recently, resveratrol was found to induce autophagy and regenerate myocardial ischemic tissue treated with stem cells. Overall observation indicates that resveratrol has a high therapeutic potentials for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Li X.,University of Connecticut | Faghri A.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Power Sources | Year: 2013

A review of the experimental studies on passive and semi-passive direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) is conducted, with an emphasis on high concentration methanol and pure methanol. Key issues such as methanol transport, water management, oxygen transport, and carbon dioxide release in the DMFC are analyzed in detail. The design and fabrication, development approaches, challenges and opportunities on DMFCs passively fed with high concentration methanol are discussed. The advances of DMFC stacks and prototype developments are presented. Several unresolved issues and challenges in DMFCs are identified and reviewed in detail. © 2012 Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Abdolvahab M.,University of Connecticut
Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications | Year: 2015

Gait transitions have been considered as bifurcations between states (e.g. walking or running modes) of a nonlinear dynamical system. A top-down synergetic approach to model gait transitions has been adapted from Frank et al. (2009) and applied to two sets of empirical observations. In this approach, it is assumed that the amplitudes of the spatio-temporal modes of locomotion satisfy a generic form of evolution equations that are known to hold for animate and inanimate self-organizing systems. The presented experimental results focus on hysteresis in human walk-to-run and run-to-walk transitions on a treadmill as a function of treadmill inclination and acceleration, the rate at which speed was increased or decreased during experimental trials. The bi-stability in the synergetic model is assumed to account for the hysteretic transitions. Accordingly, the relevant parameters of the model were estimated from the empirical data and the model's efficacy in predicting the observed hysteresis effects was evaluated. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut
Ecology Letters | Year: 2011

Given the potential for rapid and microgeographical adaptation, ecologists increasingly are exploring evolutionary explanations for community patterns. Biotic selection can generate local adaptations that alter species interactions. Although some gene flow might be necessary to fuel local adaptation, higher gene flow can homogenise traits across regions and generate local maladaptation. Herein, I estimate the contributions of local biotic selection, gene flow and spatially autocorrelated biotic selection to among-population divergence in traits involved in species interactions across 75 studies. Local biotic selection explained 6.9% of inter-population trait divergence, an indirect estimate of restricted gene flow explained 0.1%, and spatially autocorrelated selection explained 9.3%. Together, biotic selection explained 16% of the variance in population trait means. Most biotic selection regimes were spatially autocorrelated. Hence, most populations receive gene flow from populations facing similar selection, which could allow for local adaptation despite moderate gene flow. Gene flow constrained adaptation in studies conducted at finer spatial scales as expected, but this effect was often confounded with spatially autocorrelated selection. Results indicate that traits involved in species interactions might often evolve across landscapes, especially when biotic selection is spatially autocorrelated. The frequent evolution of species interactions suggests that evolutionary processes might often influence community ecology. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

Roychoudhuri C.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Nanophotonics | Year: 2010

Non-interaction of waves (NIW) in the linear domain is an unappreciated but general principle of nature. Explicit recognition of this NIW-principle will add renewed momentum to the progress of fundamental physics and related technologies like spectrometry, coherence, polarizations, laser mode-locking, etc. This principle helps us appreciate that the mathematical correctness of a theorem and its capability to predict certain groups of measured data, do not necessarily imply that the theorem is always capable of mapping real interaction processes in nature. The time-frequency Fourier theorem (TF-FT) is an example since superposed light beams, by themselves, cannot reorganize or sum their energies. Quantum Mechanics (QM) correctly discovered that photons (light beams) are non-interacting bosons. Yet, to accommodate (i) the classical belief that light beams interfere (interact) by themselves, and (ii) Einstein's heuristic hypothesis that discrete packets of energy emitted by molecules travel as indivisible quanta (contradicting spontaneous diffractive spreading), QM has been forced to hypothesize that a photon interferes only with itself. In reality, it is the quantized detecting material media that make the superposition effects become manifest as their physical transformations, from bound electrons to released photoelectrons, after absorbing energy from all the beams due to induced simultaneous stimulations by the beams. © 2010 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.

Metersky M.L.,University of Connecticut
Clinics in Chest Medicine | Year: 2012

Bronchiectasis can be caused by a myriad of underlying conditions or environmental insults to the bronchial tree. Despite a detailed evaluation, the cause remains undetermined in approximately 50% of cases. Nonetheless, it is important to use a systematic approach to the diagnostic evaluation of a patient with newly diagnosed bronchiectasis, because a substantial proportion of patients have a specific underlying diagnosis with implications for prognosis or treatment. There is not one panel of tests that can be recommended for all patients. This article reviews the initial evaluation of an adult patient with bronchiectasis. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.

We generalize Nambu dynamics to describe self-excited, active systems that evolve on attractors and account for the up-take of energy and activation processes, on the one hand, and damping and inhibitory processes, on the other. An application to rod wielding for haptic length perception and a model for self-propagating systems on two-spheres are discussed. © 2010 EDP Sciences, SIF, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Matsutake T.,University of Connecticut
Cancer immunity : a journal of the Academy of Cancer Immunology | Year: 2010

Exogenous antigens enter antigen-presenting cells through non-specific mechanisms and are presented by the MHC II molecules. We show here that antigens chaperoned by the heat shock protein gp96 enter dendritic cells and B cells through a specific, CD91- and LOX-1-mediated mechanism, and are presented by MHC II molecules, in addition to MHC I molecules as previously demonstrated. Receptor utilization results in high efficiency uptake such that antigen concentrations as low as 10(-9) M, if chaperoned by gp96, lead to productive antigen presentation. Chaperoning by gp96 increases the efficiency of uptake over un-chaperoned peptides by up to two orders of magnitude. Consistent with these studies in vitro, immunization of mice with gp96-peptide complexes (containing 5 ng peptide) results in generation of a peptide-specific CD4+ T cell response. The high efficiency suggests a mechanism in which dendritic cells, exposed in vivo to heat shock protein-chaperoned peptides liberated by virus-infected host cells or by the lysis of infecting bacteria, may prime and expand specific CD4+ responses.

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut
General Relativity and Gravitation | Year: 2011

We present a solution to the cosmological constant, the zero-point energy, and the quantum gravity problems within a single comprehensive framework. We show that in quantum theories of gravity in which the zero-point energy density of the gravitational field is well-defined, the cosmological constant and zero-point energy problems solve each other by mutual cancellation between the cosmological constant and the matter and gravitational field zero-point energy densities. Because of this cancellation, regulation of the matter field zero-point energy density is not needed, and thus does not cause any trace anomaly to arise. We exhibit our results in two theories of gravity that are well-defined quantum-mechanically. Both of these theories are locally conformal invariant, quantum Einstein gravity in two dimensions and Weyl-tensor-based quantum conformal gravity in four dimensions (a fourth-order derivative quantum theory of the type that Bender and Mannheim have recently shown to be ghost-free and unitary). Central to our approach is the requirement that any and all departures of the geometry from Minkowski are to be brought about by quantum mechanics alone. Consequently, there have to be no fundamental classical fields, and all mass scales have to be generated by dynamical condensates. In such a situation the trace of the matter field energy-momentum tensor is zero, a constraint that obliges its cosmological constant and zero-point contributions to cancel each other identically, no matter how large they might be. In our approach quantization of the gravitational field is caused by its coupling to quantized matter fields, with the gravitational field not needing any independent quantization of its own. With there being no a priori classical curvature, one does not have to make it compatible with quantization. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Noyes A.M.,University of Connecticut | Thompson P.D.,Hartford Hospital
Atherosclerosis | Year: 2014

Objective: We sought to determine the time required for lipid treatment to produce regression of atherosclerotic plaques. Background: The cholesterol content of atherosclerotic plaques contributes to their instability, and most acute cardiac events including myocardial infarction and sudden death are produced by coronary plaque disruption. We systematically reviewed the literature on atherosclerosis regression to identify the time required for cholesterol egress, plaque regression, and possible plaque stabilization. Such information may help decide when patients with statin side effects or other reasons for statin discontinuation could consider a reduction in the intensity of treatment. Methods: We performed a PubMed search to identify English language articles reporting atherosclerotic regression. Articles pertinent to the topic were reviewed in detail. Results: We identified 189 articles, 50 of which provided sufficient information to establish a rate of regression and 31 of which demonstrated plaque regression with statin therapy in the carotid (n=11), coronary (n=16), and aortic (n=4) vascular beds. Plaque regression occurred after an average of 19.7 months of treatment. Conclusion: Regression of atherosclerotic plaque using statin therapy in those studies documenting regression occurred after an average time of 19.7 months. This suggests that patients should undergo approximately two years of aggressive lipid reduction before considering a reduction of statin therapy. © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Nukavarapu S.P.,University of Connecticut | Dorcemus D.L.,University of Connecticut
Biotechnology Advances | Year: 2013

Osteochondral defect management and repair remain a significant challenge in orthopedic surgery. Osteochondral defects contain damage to both the articular cartilage as well as the underlying subchondral bone. In order to repair an osteochondral defect the needs of the bone, cartilage and the bone-cartilage interface must be taken into account. Current clinical treatments for the repair of osteochondral defects have only been palliative, not curative. Tissue engineering has emerged as a potential alternative as it can be effectively used to regenerate bone, cartilage and the bone-cartilage interface. Several scaffold strategies, such as single phase, layered, and recently graded structures have been developed and evaluated for osteochondral defect repair. Also, as a potential cell source, tissue specific cells and progenitor cells are widely studied in cell culture models, as well with the osteochondral scaffolds in vitro and in vivo. Novel factor strategies being developed, including single factor, multi-factor, or controlled factor release in a graded fashion, not only assist bone and cartilage regeneration, but also establish osteochondral interface formation. The field of tissue engineering has made great strides, however further research needs to be carried out to make this strategy a clinical reality. In this review, we summarize current tissue engineering strategies, including scaffold design, bioreactor use, as well as cell and factor based approaches and recent developments for osteochondral defect repair. In addition, we discuss various challenges that need to be addressed in years to come. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.

The promising outlook for HIV treatment as prevention (TasP) offered by the recent success in clinical trials has highlighted the need for effort against over-optimism toward anti-retroviral therapy (ART). It has been of a central concern that such optimistic beliefs may fuel an increase in risk behaviors to counter the protective effect of ART on reducing overall transmissibility of HIV. The current review was conducted to provide an updated look at the potential impact of treatment-related optimistic beliefs on the risk of HIV transmission. The review yielded a total of 14 studies published during the past 4 years that have examined the role of treatment-related optimistic beliefs in changing people's adoption of sexual risk behaviors. Findings from quantitative studies were largely in support of an association between optimistic beliefs and risk of HIV transmission. Results from qualitative studies discovered additional information concealed under the numerical associations, and pointed to the need of more rigorous and comprehensive examination of the relationship between optimistic beliefs and HIV transmission risk. Gaps in the current literature were identified and suggestions for future research were provided. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Smith M.,University of Connecticut | Bates D.W.,Brigham and Women's Hospital | Bodenheimer T.S.,University of California at San Francisco
Health Affairs | Year: 2013

Effective health care workforce development requires the adoption of team-based care delivery models, in which participating professionals practice at the full extent of their training in pursuit of care quality and cost goals. The proliferation of such new models as medical homes, accountable care organizations, and community-based care teams is creating new opportunities for pharmacists to assume roles and responsibilities commensurate with their capabilities. Some challenges to including pharmacists in team-based care delivery models, including the lack of payment mechanisms that explicitly provide for pharmacist services, have yet to be fully addressed by policy makers and others. Nevertheless, evolving models and strategies reveal a variety of ways to draw on pharmacists' expertise in such critical areas as medication management for high-risk patients. As Affordable Care Act provisions are implemented, health care workforce projections need to consider the growing number of pharmacists expected to play an increasing role in delivering primary care services. © 2013 Project HOPE - The People-to-People Health Foundation, Inc.

Trumbo S.T.,University of Connecticut
Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology | Year: 2012

Two models have been proposed to explain age-related changes in reproductive performance. State-dependent models predict that reproductive effort depends on the magnitude of surplus energy reserves, which often varies with age. Contrary to this prediction, there was no significant effect of starvation on the outcome of contests for carcasses by female Nicrophorus orbicollis despite weight loss by starved females relative to controls. The residual reproductive value (RRV) model predicts that individuals adjust their current reproductive effort based on potential for future reproduction. Younger adults are predicted to restrain reproductive effort because they are less willing to risk their potentially longer reproductive careers. This model was tested empirically for several components of reproduction. Age was found to be strongly correlated with dominance when two similarly sized females discovered a carcass on the same day. Age also had a small positive effect on egg mass and was positively correlated with ovipositing at least one egg. Age did not affect nesting performance (the degree of carcass burial or the value of a prepared carcass for another female). Age also had no effect on fecundity when a female bred alone but was an important factor when two females were in direct competition. Changing RRV related to aging appears to be a robust determinant of contest outcomes in burying beetles, but effects on other components of reproductive effort in the present and previous studies are more variable, perhaps because of effects of changing state. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Bazzi A.M.,University of Connecticut | Krein P.T.,Urbana University
IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics | Year: 2014

This paper links the theory of ripple correlation control (RCC) and extremum seeking control (ESC) with emphasis on application in a solar photovoltaic (PV) system. ESC has been well-established in the automatic control literature to find the extremum of an objective function. The RCC theory and applications have been developed in the power electronics literature for real-time optimization. Both ESC and RCC are reviewed and discussed. RCC is formulated in a similar approach to ESC, but distinct based on the source of perturbations-mainly external perturbations with ESC and inherent ripple with RCC. While some recent ESC implementations utilize inherent perturbations, RCC uses high-frequency perturbations in power electronics systems not currently utilized by ESC. The formulation and equivalencies presented here are intended for future research in both methods which can benefit from existing research for further development in theory and applications. Shared aspects that include stability and convergence characteristics are discussed. RCC formulation from an ESC perspective is then applied for maximum power point tracking of a solar PV panel, using high-frequency inherent ripple in power electronics. This RCC formulation is confirmed to have high tracking effectiveness and fast convergence. © 1986-2012 IEEE.

Bitew M.M.,University of Connecticut | Gebremichael M.,University of Connecticut
Water Resources Research | Year: 2011

The goal of this study is to evaluate the accuracy of four global high-resolution satellite rainfall products (CMORPH, TMPA 3B42RT, TMPA 3B42, and PERSIANN) through the hydrologic simulation of a 1656 km 2 mountainous watershed in the fully distributed MIKE SHE hydrologic model. This study shows that there are significant biases in the satellite rainfall estimates and large variations in rainfall amounts, leading to large variations in hydrologic simulations. The rainfall algorithms that use primarily microwave data (CMORPH and TMPA 3B42RT) show consistent and better performance in streamflow simulation (bias in the order of -53% to -3%, Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency (NSE) from 0.34 to 0.65); the rainfall algorithm that uses primarily infrared data (PERSIANN) shows lower performance (bias from -82% to -3%, Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency from -0.39 to 0.43); and the rainfall algorithm that merges the satellite data with rain gage data (TMPA 3B42) shows inconsistencies and the lowest performance (bias from -86% to 0.43%, Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency from -0.50 to 0.27). A dilemma between calibrating the hydrologic model with rain gage data and calibrating it with the corresponding satellite rainfall data is presented. Calibrating the model with corresponding satellite rainfall data increases the performance of satellite streamflow simulation compared to the model calibrated with rain gage data, but decreases the performance of satellite evapotranspiration simulation.

We have currently entered a genomic era of cancer research which may soon lead to a genomic era of cancer treatment. Patient DNA sequencing information may lead to a personalized approach to managing an individual's cancer as well as future cancer risk. The success of this approach, however, begins not necessarily in the clinician's office, but rather at the laboratory bench of the basic scientist. The basic scientist plays a critical role since the DNA sequencing information is of limited use unless one knows the function of the gene that is altered and the manner by which a sequence alteration affects that function. The role of basic science research in aiding the clinical management of a disease is perhaps best exemplified by considering the case of Lynch syndrome, a hereditary disease that predisposes patients to colorectal and other cancers. This review will examine how the diagnosis, treatment and even prevention of Lynch syndrome-associated cancers has benefitted from extensive basic science research on the DNA mismatch repair genes whose alteration underlies this condition. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Polivka T.,University of South Bohemia | Polivka T.,Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic | Frank H.A.,University of Connecticut
Accounts of Chemical Research | Year: 2010

Carotenoids are naturally occurring pigments that absorb light in the spectral region in which the sun irradiates maximally. These molecules transfer this energy to chlorophylls, initiating the primary photochemical events of photosynthesis. Carotenoids also regulate the flow of energy within the photosynthetic apparatus and protect it from photoinduced damage caused by excess light absorption. To carry out these functions in nature, carotenoids are bound in discrete pigment-protein complexes in the proximity of chlorophylls. A few three-dimensional structures of these carotenoid complexes have been determined by X-ray crystallography. Thus, the stage is set for attempting to correlate the structural information with the spectroscopic properties of carotenoids to understand the molecular mechanism(s) of their function in photosynthetic systems. In this Account, we summarize current spectroscopic data describing the excited state energies and ultrafast dynamics of purified carotenoids in solution and bound in light-harvesting complexes from purple bacteria, marine algae, and green plants. Many of these complexes can be modified using mutagenesis or pigment exchange which facilitates the elucidation of correlations between structure and function. We describe the structural and electronic factors controlling the function of carotenoids as energy donors. We also discuss unresolved issues related to the nature of spectroscopically dark excited states, which could play a role in light harvesting. To illustrate the interplay between structural determinations and spectroscopic investigations that exemplifies work in the field, we describe the spectroscopic properties of four light-harvesting complexes whose structures have been determined to atomic resolution. The first, the LH2 complex from the purple bacterium Rhodopseudomonas acidophila, contains the carotenoid rhodopin glucoside. The second is the LHCII trimeric complex from higher plants which uses the carotenoids lutein, neoxanthin, and violaxanthin to transfer energy to chlorophyll. The third, the peridinin-chlorophyll-protein (PCP) from the dinoflagellate Amphidinium carterae, is the only known complex in which the bound carotenoid (peridinin) pigments outnumber the chlorophylls. The last is xanthorhodopsin from the eubacterium Salinibacter ruber. This complex contains the carotenoid salinixanthin, which transfers energy to a retinal chromophore. The carotenoids in these pigment-protein complexes transfer energy with high efficiency by optimizing both the distance and orientation of the carotenoid donor and chlorophyll acceptor molecules. Importantly, the versatility and robustness of carotenoids in these light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes have led to their incorporation in the design and synthesis of nanoscale antenna systems. In these bioinspired systems, researchers are seeking to improve the light capture and use of energy from the solar emission spectrum. © 2010 American Chemical Society.

Gai M.,University of Connecticut
Acta Physica Polonica B | Year: 2011

The rate of stellar formation of carbon at high temperatures (T >3 GK) may increase beyond that which is expected from the Hoyle state at 7.654 MeV due to contributions from higher lying states in 12C. The long sought for second 2+ state predicted at 9-10 MeV excitation energy in 12C was predicted to significantly increase the production of 12C. An Optical Readout Time Projection Chamber (O-TPC) operating with the gas mixture of CO2(80%) + N2(20%) at 100 Torr with gamma beams from the HIγ S facility of TUNL at Duke was used to study the formation of carbon (and oxygen) during helium burning. Preliminary measurements were carried out at beam energies: E = 9:51; 9:61; 9:72; 10:00; 10:54; 10:84 and 11:14 MeV. Extra attention was paid to separating the carbon dissociation events, 12C(γ ; 3α), from the oxygen dissociation events, 16O( ; α)12C. Complete angular distributions were measured giving credence to a newly identified 2+ state just below 10.0 MeV.

Urban M.C.,University of Connecticut
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences | Year: 2013

We need accurate predictions about how climate change will alter species distributions and abundances around the world. Most predictions assume simplistic dispersal scenarios and ignore biotic interactions. We argue for incorporating the complexities of dispersal and species interactions. Range expansions depend not just on mean dispersal, but also on the shape of the dispersal kernel and the population's growth rate. We show how models using species-specific dispersal can produce more accurate predictions than models applying all-or-nothing dispersal scenarios. Models that additionally include species interactions can generate distinct outcomes. For example, species interactions can slow climate tracking and produce more extinctions than models assuming no interactions. We conclude that (1) just knowing mean dispersal is insufficient to predict biotic responses to climate change, and (2) considering interspecific dispersal variation and species interactions jointly will be necessary to anticipate future changes to biological diversity. We advocate for collecting key information on interspecific dispersal differences and strong biotic interactions so that we can build the more robust predictive models that will be necessary to inform conservation efforts as climates continue to change. © 2013 New York Academy of Sciences.

Kourelis T.V.,University of Connecticut | Siegel R.D.,Hartford Hospital
Medical Oncology | Year: 2012

Metformin, one of most widely prescribed oral hypoglycemic agents, has recently received increased attention because of its potential antitumorigenic effects that are thought to be independent of its hypoglycemic effects. Several potential mechanisms have been suggested for the ability of metformin to suppress cancer growth in vitro and vivo: (1) activation of LKB1/AMPK pathway, (2) induction of cell cycle arrest and/or apoptosis, (3) inhibition of protein synthesis, (4) reduction in circulating insulin levels, (5) inhibition of the unfolded protein response (UPR), (6) activation of the immune system, and (7) eradication of cancer stem cells. There is also a growing number of evidence, mostly in the form of retrospective clinical studies that suggest that metformin may be associated with a decreased risk of developing cancer and with a better response to chemotherapy. There are currently several ongoing randomized clinical trials that incorporate metformin as an adjuvant to classic chemotherapy and aim to evaluate its potential benefits in this setting. This review highlights basic aspects of the molecular biology of metformin and summarizes new advances in basic science as well as intriguing results from recent clinical studies. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011.

Keul A.,University of Connecticut
Social and Cultural Geography | Year: 2013

Animal geographies have complicated our understanding of human/nonhuman animal relationships by positioning other animals as recipients of human culture and, more recently, by applying theories of embodiment to illustrate the co-constitution of human-animal worlds. This paper addresses human-alligator relationships in Louisiana by illustrating the history and culture of alligator hide production alongside an analysis of human-alligator encounters through tourism. Alligators have played all sorts of instrumental and symbolic roles in the Atchafalaya River Basin where populations here have been managed as a corollary to the exotic hide industry. More recently, gators have been positioned as the star attractions on swamp tours. Guides, tourists, and alligators share encounters where the nonhumans are anthropomorphized and empowered to shape human perceptions of other bodies. By jumping out of the water for food or simply allowing the tourists' gaze, alligators are positioned both as an exotic body and as a capable agent in the experience of space. Guides take part in hybridizing the two groups of actors by individuating gators, enticing them to interact with tourists and negotiating the fears of gators and tourists alike to produce what they see as a mutually beneficial experience. These encounters allow for meaningful interactions between distinct yet similar bodies and highlight the animals' power to influence people. © 2013 Taylor & Francis.

McCutcheon P.,University of Connecticut
Geoforum | Year: 2013

This paper demonstrates how the Nation of Islam (NOI), a well known black nationalist organization, is utilizing notions of community to promote the activities and goals of its farm to other black people. The NOI owns Muhammad Farms in rural southern Georgia, USA. Its stated purpose is to feed all black people in the United States. Historically, the NOI has occupied a radical space in the black community by promoting black separatism. I argue that while its stance on separatism has not changed, discourse about Muhammad Farms appeals to more generalized notions of community uplift and self-determination, key components of black community nationalism. The NOI employs these discursive strategies to rally other black people around their message. I utilize archival and textual research along with critical discourse analysis to unpack this dialectical relationship between black racial identity and the farm. I claim that the NOI utilizes and creates black information networks in part to control knowledge disseminated about the farm. They are retelling black agrarian history in a way that mixes fact, fiction and shock value. Validation from others, mainly white people is antithetical to the NOI's black nationalist principles. Ultimately the organization seeks to recreate the farm as a landscape of liberation that includes tragedy, triumph and hope for the future. The NOI presents Muhammad Farms as a symbol and example of the possibilities if black people return to the farm. Muhammad Farms also serves as a living memorial to black agrarian history. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Rosin L.,University of Connecticut | Mellone B.G.,University of Connecticut
Developmental Cell | Year: 2016

Centromeres mediate the conserved process of chromosome segregation, yet centromeric DNA and the centromeric histone, CENP-A, are rapidly evolving. The rapid evolution of Drosophila CENP-A loop 1 (L1) is thought to modulate the DNA-binding preferences of CENP-A to counteract centromere drive, the preferential transmission of chromosomes with expanded centromeric satellites. Consistent with this model, CENP-A from Drosophila bipectinata (bip) cannot localize to Drosophila melanogaster (mel) centromeres. We show that this result is due to the inability of the mel CENP-A chaperone, CAL1, to deposit bip CENP-A into chromatin. Co-expression of bip CENP-A and bip CAL1 in mel cells restores centromeric localization, and similar findings apply to other Drosophila species. We identify two co-evolving regions, CENP-A L1 and the CAL1 N terminus, as critical for lineage-specific CENP-A incorporation. Collectively, our data show that the rapid evolution of L1 modulates CAL1-mediated CENP-A assembly, suggesting an alternative mechanism for the suppression of centromere drive. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.

Rawitscher G.,University of Connecticut
Computer Physics Communications | Year: 2015

The phase and amplitude (Ph-A) of a wave function vary slowly with distance, in contrast to the wave function that can be highly oscillatory. Hence the Ph-A representation of a wave function requires far fewer computational mesh points than the wave function itself. In 1930 Milne presented an equation for the phase and the amplitude functions (which is different from the one developed by Calogero), and in 1962 Seaton and Peach solved these equations iteratively. The objective of the present study is to implement Seaton and Peach's iteration procedure with a spectral Chebyshev expansion method, and at the same time present a non-iterative analytic solution to an approximate version of the iterative equations. The iterations converge rapidly for the case of attractive potentials. Two numerical examples are given: (1) for a potential that decreases with distance as 1/r3, and (2) a Coulomb potential α1/r. In both cases the whole radial range of [0-2000] requires only between 25 and 100 mesh points and the corresponding accuracy is between 10-3 and 10-6. The 0th iteration (which is the WKB approximation) gives an accuracy of 10-2. This spectral method permits one to calculate a wave function out to large distances reliably and economically. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Dumlu C.K.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2010

The recent developments of high intensity ultrashort laser pulses have raised the hopes of observing Schwinger vacuum pair production which is one of the important nonperturbative phenomena in QED. The quantitative analysis of realistic high intensity laser pulses is vital for understanding the effect of the field parameters on the momentum spectrum of the produced particles. In this study, we analyze chirped laser pulses with a subcycle structure, and investigate the effects of the chirp parameter on the momentum spectrum of the produced particles. The combined effect of the chirp and carrier phase of the laser pulse is also analyzed. These effects are qualitatively explained by investigating the turning-point structure of the potential within the framework of the complex WKB scattering approach to pair production. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Alexandrescu A.T.,University of Connecticut
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

Amylin is an endocrine hormone that accumulates in amyloid plaques in patients with advanced type 2 diabetes. The amyloid plaques have been implicated in the destruction of pancreatic β-cells, which synthesize amylin and insulin. To better characterize the secondary structure of amylin in amyloid fibrils we assigned the NMR spectrum of the unfolded state in 95% DMSO and used a quenched hydrogen-deuterium exchange technique to look at amide proton solvent protection in the fibrils. In this technique, partially exchanged fibrils are dissolved in 95% DMSO and information about amide proton occupancy in the fibrils is determined from DMSO-denatured monomers. Hydrogen exchange lifetimes at pH 7.6 and 37°C vary between ~5 h for the unstructured N-terminus to 600 h for amide protons in the two β-strands that form inter-molecular hydrogen bonds between amylin monomers along the length of the fibril. Based on the protection data we conclude that residues A8-H18 and I26-Y37 comprise the two β-strands in amylin fibrils. There is variation in protection within the β-strands, particularly for strand β1 where only residues F15-H18 are strongly protected. Differences in protection appear to be due to restrictions on backbone dynamics imposed by the packing of two-layers of C2-symmetry-related β-hairpins in the protofilament structure, with strand β1 positioned on the surface and β2 in the interior. © 2013 Andrei T. Alexandrescu.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Unsal M.,North Carolina State University
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2014

We illustrate the physical significance and mathematical origin of resurgent trans-series expansions for energy eigenvalues in quantum mechanical problems with degenerate harmonic minima, by using the uniform WKB approach. We provide evidence that the perturbative expansion, combined with a global eigenvalue condition, contains all information needed to generate all orders of the nonperturbative multi-instanton expansion. This provides a dramatic realization of the concept of resurgence, whose structure is naturally encoded in the resurgence triangle. We explain the relation between the uniform WKB approach, multi-instantons, and resurgence theory. The essential idea applies to any perturbative expansion, and so is also relevant for quantum field theories with degenerate minima which can be continuously connected to quantum mechanical systems. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Unsal M.,SFSU
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2014

In a large variety of quantum mechanical systems, we show that the full nonperturbative expression for energy eigenvalues, containing all orders of perturbative, nonperturbative, and quasi-zero-mode terms, may be generated directly from the perturbative expansion about the perturbative vacuum, combined with a single global boundary condition. This provides a dramatic realization of the principle of "resurgence," that the fluctuations about different semiclassical saddle points are related to one another in a precise quantitative manner. The analysis of quantum mechanics also generalizes to certain calculable regimes of quantum field theory. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Scruggs L.,University of Connecticut | Benegal S.,University of Connecticut
Global Environmental Change | Year: 2012

Social surveys suggest that the American public's concern about climate change has declined dramatically since 2008. This has led to a search for explanations for this decline, and great deal of speculation that there has been a fundamental shift in public trust in climate science. We evaluate over thirty years of public opinion data about global warming and the environment, and suggest that the decline in belief about climate change is most likely driven by the economic insecurity caused by the Great Recession. Evidence from European nations further supports an economic explanation for changing public opinion. The pattern is consistent with more than forty years of public opinion about environmental policy. Popular alternative explanations for declining support - partisan politicization, biased media coverage, fluctuations in short-term weather conditions - are unable to explain the suddenness and timing of opinion trends. The implication of these findings is that the "crisis of confidence" in climate change will likely rebound after labor market conditions improve, but not until then. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Zhang J.,University of Connecticut | Wu Y.,University of Connecticut
Bioinformatics | Year: 2011

Motivation: Structural variation (SV), such as deletion, is an important type of genetic variation and may be associated with diseases. While there are many existing methods for detecting SVs, finding deletions is still challenging with low-coverage short sequence reads. Existing deletion finding methods for sequence reads either use the so-called split reads mapping for detecting deletions with exact breakpoints, or rely on discordant insert sizes to estimate approximate positions of deletions. Neither is completely satisfactory with low-coverage sequence reads.Results: We present SVseq, an efficient two-stage approach, which combines the split reads mapping and discordant insert size analysis. The first stage is split reads mapping based on the Burrows-Wheeler transform (BWT), which finds candidate deletions. Our split reads mapping method allows mismatches and small indels, thus deletions near other small variations can be discovered and reads with sequencing errors can be utilized. The second stage filters the false positives by analyzing discordant insert sizes. SVseq is more accurate than an alternative approach when applying on simulated data and empirical data, and is also much faster. © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

Dumlu C.K.,University of Connecticut | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2011

We present simple new approximate formulas, for both scalar and spinor QED, for the number of particles produced from vacuum by a time-dependent electric field, incorporating the interference effects that arise from an arbitrary number of distinct semiclassical turning points. Such interference effects are important when the temporal profile of the laser pulse has subcycle structure. We show how the resulting semiclassical intuition may be used to guide the design of temporal profiles that enhance the momentum spectrum due to interference effects. The result is easy to implement and generally applicable to time-dependent tunneling problems, such as those that appear in many other contexts in particle and nuclear physics, condensed matter physics, atomic physics, chemical physics, and gravitational physics. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Altinoluk T.,University of Connecticut | Kovner A.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2011

We revisit the "hybrid formalism" for particle production used recently to study saturation effects in single hadron multiplicities at forward rapidities at RHIC and LHC. We point out that at leading twist there is an extra contribution to the formulae used so far, which corresponds to particle production via inelastic scattering of the projectile partons on the target fields. This contribution is expected to be small due to kinematics at very forward rapidities/very high transverse momenta, but should be significant at high momenta and very high energies. This contribution is expected to be most affected by saturation effects, and is therefore an interesting object of study in the context of possible onset of saturation at high energies. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Kenny D.A.,University of Connecticut | Judd C.M.,University of Colorado at Boulder
Psychological Science | Year: 2014

Two rather surprising anomalies relating to statistical power occur in testing mediation. First, in a model with no direct effect for which the total effect and indirect effect are identical, the power for the test of the total effect can be dramatically smaller than the power for the test of the indirect effect. Second, when there is a direct effect of a causal variable on the outcome controlling for the mediator, the power of the test of the indirect effect is often considerably greater than the power of the test of the direct effect, even when the two are of the same magnitude. We try to explain the reasons for these anomalies and how they affect practice. © The Author(s) 2013.

Bucklin A.,University of Connecticut | Steinke D.,University of Guelph | Blanco-Bercial L.,University of Connecticut
Annual Review of Marine Science | Year: 2011

More than 230,000 known species representing 31 metazoan phyla populate the world's oceans. Perhaps another 1,000,000 or more species remain to be discovered. There is reason for concern that species extinctions may outpace discovery, especially in diverse and endangered marine habitats such as coral reefs. DNA barcodes (i.e., short DNA sequences for species recognition and discrimination) are useful tools to accelerate species-level analysis of marine biodiversity and to facilitate conservation efforts. This review focuses on the usual barcode region for metazoans: a ∼648 base-pair region of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene. Barcodes have also been used for population genetic and phylogeographic analysis, identification of prey in gut contents, detection of invasive species, forensics, and seafood safety. More controversially, barcodes have been used to delimit species boundaries, reveal cryptic species, and discover new species. Emerging frontiers are the use of barcodes for rapid and increasingly automated biodiversity assessment by high-throughput sequencing, including environmental barcoding and the use of barcodes to detect species for which formal identification or scientific naming may never be possible. Copyright © 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Cho M.,Hankyong National University | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Optics Letters | Year: 2013

In this Letter, we present a three-dimensional (3D) photon counting double-random-phase encryption (DRPE) technique using passive integral imaging. A 3D photon counting DRPE can encrypt a 3D scene and provides more security and authentications due to photon counting Poisson nonlinear transformation on the encrypted image. In addition, 3D imaging allows verification of the 3D object at different depths. Preliminary results and performance evaluation have been presented. © 2013 Optical Society of America.

Kovner A.,University of Connecticut | Lublinsky M.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev
International Journal of Modern Physics E | Year: 2013

We discuss the general mechanism leading to long-range rapidity and angular correlations produced in high energy collisions (the ridge). This effect naturally appears in the high energy QCD and is strongly sensitive to physics of the gluon saturation. We comment on various recent practical realizations of the main idea, paying special attention to Nc counting and stress the relevance of Pomeron loops. © 2013 World Scientific Publishing Company.

Spinner N.,University of Connecticut | Mustain W.E.,University of Connecticut
Electrochimica Acta | Year: 2011

Nickel oxide (NiO) was synthesized using several methods and the various physical characteristics observed were correlated to differences in electrocatalytic activity, specifically relating to the oxidation of methanol in alkaline media. Room temperature NaOH-precipitated NiO showed the highest activity and stability towards methanol oxidation in hydroxide (0.005 M KOH) and carbonate (0.1 M Na2CO3) media of similar alkalinity. Rapid degradation of NiO electrodes was attributed to microcracking and disintegration associated with the formation of the γ-NiOOH/α-Ni(OH) 2 redox couple, in addition to repeated scans through the oxygen evolution reaction region. Carbonate electrolytes also exhibited average current ranges 3-4 times higher and charge transfer resistances around 85% lower than hydroxide electrolytes. This suggests carbonate may provide a better medium in terms of higher activity and more moderate alkalinity for electrochemical reactions than hydroxide solutions. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Brenick A.,University of Connecticut | Romano K.,Florida State University
Child Development | Year: 2016

Cultural group identity and group norms are significantly related to social exclusion evaluations (Bennett,). This study examined 241 Jewish-American mid (M = 14.18 years, SD = 0.42) to late (M = 17.21 years, SD = 0.43; MageTOTAL = 15.54 years, SD = 1.57) adolescents’ cultural identities and contextually salient perceived group norms in relation to their evaluations of Arab-American inclusion and exclusion across two contexts (peers vs. family at home). Results suggest that perceived group norms are related to the context in which they are applied: parents in the home and peers in the peer context. Peers remained a significant source of perceived group norms in the home context. Significant interactions emerged between perceived parent group norms and cultural identity. Findings highlight the need to address group-specific norms by context to ensure maximum effectiveness for intergroup interventions. © 2016 The Authors. Child Development © 2016 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

Kovner A.,University of Connecticut | Lublinsky M.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2011

We present a general, model independent argument demonstrating that gluons produced in high energy hadronic collision are necessarily correlated in rapidity and also in the emission angle. The strength of the correlation depends on the process and on the structure/model of the colliding particles. In particular we argue that it is strongly affected (and underestimated) by factorized approximations frequently used to quantify the effect. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Bohanno R.W.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research | Year: 2011

The 5-repetition sit-to-stand test (FRSTST) is a widely used measure of functional strength, particularly among older adults. The purpose of this review was to summarize the findings of research using the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) to describe the test-retest reliability of the FRSTST. A search of 3 electronic databases and hand searches were used to identify relevant articles. Information on the subjects, test sessions and the ICCs reported was abstracted from the articles. The searches identified 10 relevant articles. The ICCs reported in the articles ranged from 0.64 to 0.96. The adjustedmean ICCcalculated from the reported ICCs was 0.81. The test-retest reliability of the FRSTST can be interpreted as good to high in most populations and settings. © 2011 National Strength and Conditioning Association.

Day R.W.,University of Connecticut | Cramton P.,University of Maryland University College
Operations Research | Year: 2012

We report on the use of a quadratic programming technique in recent and upcoming spectrum auctions in Europe. Specifically, we compute a unique point in the core that minimizes the sum of squared deviations from a reference point, for example, from the Vickrey-Clarke-Groves payments. Analyzing the Karush-Kuhn-Tucker conditions, we demonstrate that the resulting payments can be decomposed into a series of economically meaningful and equitable penalties. Furthermore, we discuss the benefits of this combinatorial auction, explore the use of alternative reserve pricing approaches in this context, and indicate the results of several hundred computational runs using CATS data. © 2012 INFORMS.

Cruz J.M.,University of Connecticut
International Journal of Production Research | Year: 2013

This paper presents a decision model that captures supply-side disruption risks, social risks, and demand-side uncertainty within an integrated global supply chain and corporate social responsibility (CSR) modelling and analysis framework. The global supply chain decision-makers must decide on the level of investment in CSR activities and the choice of trading partners (manufacturer or retailer) given their CSR consciousness and perceived riskiness in order to maximise profit and minimise their overall risk. The model incorporates individual attitudes towards disruption risks among the manufacturers and the retailers, with the demands for the product associated with the retailers being random. The model allows one to investigate the effects of heterogeneous CSR activities in a global supply chain and to compute the resultant equilibrium pattern of product outputs, transactions, product prices, and levels of social responsibility activities. The results show that CSR activities can potentially be used to mitigate global supply chain risk. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Mizuno M.,University of Connecticut
European journal of pharmaceutics and biopharmaceutics : official journal of Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Pharmazeutische Verfahrenstechnik e.V | Year: 2013

DSC thermograms of solid state pure proteins often show a distinct endotherm at a temperature far below the glass transition temperature of the system (Tg). We hypothesized this endotherm represents enthalpy recovery associated with an internal mobility transition of the protein molecule. Although the existence of an internal transition has been postulated, whether this endotherm is associated with such a transition has not previously been discussed. The purpose of this study was to investigate the origin of the pre-Tg endotherm in lyophilized bovine serum albumin (BSA). Due to strong glass behavior, the system Tg was determined by extrapolating Tg data of disaccharide/BSA formulations to zero saccharide. A small pre-Tg endotherm around 40-60 °C was observed in amorphous BSA equilibrated at 11%RH. The apparent activation energy suggested the endotherm was "α-mobility"-related. A solid state hydrogen/deuterium exchange study using FTIR was conducted over a temperature range spanning the endotherm. We found a fast phase, followed by essentially a plateau level which is highly temperature dependent in the 40-60 °C range, suggesting enhanced internal protein motion as the system passes through the temperature range of the endotherm. These results suggest the pre-Tg endotherm is associated with a protein internal mobility transition. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Ren J.,University of Connecticut | McCutcheon J.R.,University of Connecticut
Desalination | Year: 2014

New membranes for forward osmosis (FO) have been made by numerous academic groups around the world. Few of these designs, however, have made it to full-scale production. For two decades, the only FO membrane made on a full-scale production line was a cellulose acetate membrane from Hydration Technology Innovations (HTI). Only recently have other companies designed new membranes and produced them on a large scale, but those membranes are still largely unavailable to academic researchers. In this study, we report on a newly launched forward osmosis membrane from HTI. This thin film composite (TFC) membrane is a departure from their cellulose acetate platform and is among if not the first TFC membrane to be made on a 40-inch line. The TFC membrane tested, which is their first generation TFC membrane, exhibited high water permeance and good mechanical strength relative to other membranes discussed in the academic literature. Under FO tests, the membrane achieved high water flux of 46.4 and 22.9Lm-2h-1 with a modest salt flux of 24.9 and 6.4gm-2h-1 using 1M sodium chloride against deionized water in pressure retarded osmosis (PRO) and FO modes, respectively. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

The experimental analysis was conducted for a better understanding of the combustion stability and reduction of exhaust emission in low compression ratio (CR) engine. The combustion stability was analyzed in terms of combustion pressure, the rate of heat release (ROHR), the indicated mean effective pressure (IMEP), and coefficient of variation of indicated mean effective pressure (COVIMEP), and formation of exhaust emissions such as CO, HC, NOX, and soot was measured and compared in the low compression ratio single cylinder CI engine.It was revealed that maximum value of combustion pressure (Pmax) in two pilot injections was increased to almost the same level of single injection combustion although its maximum rate of heat release (ROHR) was decreased to 47.2% compared to single injection combustion. It was also observed that two pilot injections improves combustion efficiency, and these injection strategies operate engine more stably in low compression ratio engine, based on the results of increased IMEP (2.1%) and decreased COVIMEP (5.7%). Moreover, in multiple injection combustion, more CO formation and less HC emission were observed during combustion process, and remarkable simultaneous reduction of NOX up to 58.7% and soot up to 25% can be achieved in low compression ratio engine. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Aurin D.A.,University of Connecticut | Dierssen H.M.,University of Connecticut
Remote Sensing of Environment | Year: 2012

Current operational approaches to ocean color remote sensing tend to be least accurate in coastal regions with waters rich in terrigenous material. Semi-analytical models can be used to retrieve the absorption and backscattering properties of dissolved and suspended materials unique to these environments, and subsequently biogeochemical parameters such as total suspended material (TSM) and chlorophyll (Chl). In this study, optical data collected over several years are used to select and optimize a semi-analytical ocean color algorithm for the dynamic and optically complex Long Island Sound estuary. The most successful algorithm requires a red reflectance channel between 600 and 650nm, which is not included in many current ocean color sensors, but is essential in highly scattering waters. Regional optimization including the use of a dynamic, spectrally variable f/Q, a value related to the bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF), results in an approximately five-fold decrease in retrieval bias in highly backscattering, sediment-laden waters near river outflows. Retrievals of dissolved and particulate spectral absorption, backscattering, dissolved and detrital absorption coefficients and total suspended matter obtained from the optimized algorithm agree well with field observations (r 2≥0.90). These parameters are useful for assessing riverine discharge, mixing and residence times of surface waters, as well as assessing the turbidity and light penetration in this estuary. Estimation of Chl remains challenging (r 2=0.59) due to the stepwise nature of the algorithm and the relatively high proportion of dissolved and non-algal constituents masking phytoplankton absorption (generally<20% of total absorption at 440nm). Moreover, diverse phytoplankton assemblages throughout the region create variability between spectral absorption and chlorophyll and highlight the benefits of increased spectral resolution of ocean color satellites going forward. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.

Nowak K.L.,University of Connecticut
Computers in Human Behavior | Year: 2013

People choose aspects of the self to present that they believe will lead others to have positive impressions of them. The diffusion of telecommunication technologies has led to some of this self-presentation being done using Instant Messaging and other social media applications and devices. When people use Instant Messaging, they select graphical representations to represent them called Buddy Icons. This project asks users to describe the Buddy Icons they are currently using and what they intend to self-present in selecting them to test the extent to which self presentation theory can explain the choices people are making. Overall, participants reported that they felt their Buddy Icons accurately reflected physical characteristics, psychological aspects of the self, or both, which is consistent with previous research that people are relatively honest in their self-presentation online. Those who selected more human like (anthropomorphic) Buddy Icons reported them as more representative of the physical, as opposed to the psychological, self. Finally, users who felt their Buddy Icon accurately represented them reported a stronger sense of identification and felt their Buddy Icon could increase social presence. Implications of these results for online self presentation and impression management are discussed. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

This study uses the carbon isotope values (δ 13C) to determine how environmental deterioration is expressed in the δ 13C values of vegetation and gazelles in the southern Levant. The ultimate goal is to use these modern data to predict the climatic impact of the Younger Dryas (YD). Climatic deterioration associated with the YD has been cited as the trigger for the transition to agriculture in the southern Levant. However, the evidence for the local severity of this climatic event is equivocal. There is disagreement over whether Mediterranean forest was succeeded by arid adapted steppic plant communities in what has been termed the Natufian 'core area'. The modern data show a moderately negative regression slope between aridity and the δ 13C values of both modern C 3 plants and gazelle horn keratin within the Mediterranean phytogeographic belt. This pattern is expressed in both seasonal and annual datasets. The incorporation of a C 4 plant component into gazelle diets is evident in the arid Mediterranean region, and is more pronounced in the dry season. The latter is apparent even despite interference caused by gazelle foraging on cultivated land. Based on the present day data, it is predicted that the succession of Mediterranean forest by open steppic vegetation would cause a positive shift of >2% in the δ 13C values of C 3 plants and gazelles. The argument is based on the response of C 3 vegetation to growth under increasing water stress conditions and the current distribution of C 3 and C 4 vegetation in relation to rainfall. This study presents a new tool with the potential to assess the climatic severity of the YD and its effect on Natufian foraging strategies. © 2012.

Sun X.,University of Connecticut | Wang Y.,University of Connecticut | Lei Y.,University of Connecticut
Chemical Society Reviews | Year: 2015

The detection of explosives is one of the current pressing concerns in global security. In the past few decades, a large number of emissive sensing materials have been developed for the detection of explosives in vapor, solution, and solid states through fluorescence methods. In recent years, great efforts have been devoted to develop new fluorescent materials with various sensing mechanisms for detecting explosives in order to achieve super-sensitivity, ultra-selectivity, as well as fast response time. This review article starts with a brief introduction on various sensing mechanisms for fluorescence based explosive detection, and then summarizes in an exhaustive and systematic way the state-of-the-art of fluorescent materials for explosive detection with a focus on the research in the recent 5 years. A wide range of fluorescent materials, such as conjugated polymers, small fluorophores, supramolecular systems, bio-inspired materials and aggregation induced emission-active materials, and their sensing performance and sensing mechanism are the centerpiece of this review. Finally, conclusions and future outlook are presented and discussed. © The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Bagot K.S.,Yale University | Kaminer Y.,University of Connecticut
Addiction | Year: 2014

Background and Aims: Increasing prescription stimulant abuse among youth without diagnoses of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is of concern. The most frequently cited motive for abuse is improved academic achievement via neurocognitive enhancement. Our aim in reviewing the literature was to identify neurocognitive effects of prescription stimulants in non-ADHD youth. Methods: A systematic review was conducted for youth aged 12-25 years using Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Fourteen papers were included. Results: Modafinil appears to improve reaction time (P≤0.04), logical reasoning (P≤0.05) and problem-solving. Methylphenidate appears to improve performance in novel tasks and attention-based tasks (P≤0.05), and reduces planning latency in more complex tasks (P≤0.05). Amphetamine has been shown to improve consolidation of information (0.02≥P≤0.05), leading to improved recall. Across all three types of prescription stimulants, research shows improved attention with lack of consensus on whether these improvements are limited to simple versus complex tasks in varying youth populations. Conclusions: The heterogeneity of the non-attention deficit hyperactivity disorder youth population, the variation in cognitive task characteristics and lack of replication of studies makes assessing the potential global neurocognitive benefits of stimulants among non-attention deficit hyperactivity disorder youth difficult; however, some youth may derive benefit in specific cognitive domains. © 2013 Society for the Study of Addiction.

Greenspan S.,University of Connecticut | Woods G.W.,Morehouse School of Medicine
Current Opinion in Psychiatry | Year: 2014

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Adoption of the term intellectual disability (intellectual developmental disorder, IDD) in DSM-5 represents a shift from a disability (test score) emphasis to a disorder (medical/neurobiological) emphasis. Several implications of this shift for definition and diagnosis of intellectual disability (ID) are discussed. RECENT FINDINGS: The intellectual disability (IDD) section of DSM-5 reflects a growing concern about excessive and inappropriate reliance on intelligence quotient (IQ) cut-offs. Clinicians are now encouraged to take into account various sources of test error; rely more on neuropsychological profiles of cognitive impairments; and approach the adaptive functioning of patients with a greater emphasis on cognitive aspects, such as risk-unawareness. SUMMARY: A psychometric approach to intellectual disability/IDD, defining it solely in terms of test scores, is inappropriate for psychiatric and medical disorders, which use a disorder rather than a disability model. The intellectual disability/IDD section in DSM-5 is the first prototypical attempt to broaden the category, and approach it in more clinical terms, while still maintaining the meaning of the condition. © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams &Wilkins.

Costa-Guda J.,University of Connecticut | Arnold A.,University of Connecticut
Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology | Year: 2014

Parathyroid neoplasia is most commonly due to benign parathyroid adenoma but rarely can be caused by malignant parathyroid carcinoma. Evidence suggests that parathyroid carcinomas rarely, if ever, evolve through an identifiable benign intermediate, with the notable exception of carcinomas associated with the familial hyperparathyroidism-jaw tumor syndrome. Several genes have been directly implicated in the pathogenesis of typical sporadic parathyroid adenoma; somatic mutations in the MEN1 tumor suppressor gene are the most frequent finding, and alterations in the cyclin D1/. PRAD1 oncogene are also firmly established molecular drivers of sporadic adenomas. In addition, good evidence supports mutation in the CDKN1B/p27 cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CDKI) gene, and in other CDKI genes as contributing to disease pathogenesis in this context. Somatic defects in additional genes, including β-catenin, POT1 and EZH2 may contribute to parathyroid adenoma formation but, for most, their ability to drive parathyroid tumorigenesis remains to be demonstrated experimentally. Further, genetic predisposition to sporadic presentations of parathyroid adenoma appears be conferred by rare, and probably low-penetrance, germline variants in CDKI genes and, perhaps, in other genes such as CASR and AIP. The HRPT2 tumor suppressor gene is commonly mutated in parathyroid carcinoma. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Bai X.,University of Connecticut
INFORMS Journal on Computing | Year: 2012

This paper addresses the issue of data quality management in information systems within an enterprise. Motivated by legislative mandates such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 on the reliability and integrity of the data and the enterprise systems from which the data are produced, we propose a process-based modeling framework to assess the impact of data errors in the business process information flow and the resulting data quality metrics. This framework is then integrated with a business control framework in which the placement and effectiveness of control procedures alter the propagation of errors and, ultimately, the quality of the data in the business process. This integrated framework enables mathematical formulations of managerial problems that lead to effective data quality control strategies. We develop a two-stage multiple-choice knapsack model as a special case, and we illustrate the model and analysis through a revenue realization process. © 2012 INFORMS.

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut
Foundations of Physics | Year: 2012

We review some recent developments in the conformal gravity theory that has been advanced as a candidate alternative to standard Einstein gravity. As a quantum theory the conformal theory is both renormalizable and unitary, with unitarity being obtained because the theory is a PT symmetric rather than a Hermitian theory. We show that in the theory there can be no a priori classical curvature, with all curvature having to result from quantization. In the conformal theory gravity requires no independent quantization of its own, with it being quantized solely by virtue of its being coupled to a quantized matter source. Moreover, because it is this very coupling that fixes the strength of the gravitational field commutators, the gravity sector zero-point energy density and pressure fluctuations are then able to identically cancel the zero-point fluctuations associated with the matter sector. In addition, we show that when the conformal symmetry is spontaneously broken, the zero-point structure automatically readjusts so as to identically cancel the cosmological constant term that dynamical mass generation induces. We show that the macroscopic classical theory that results from the quantum conformal theory incorporates global physics effects that provide for a detailed accounting of a comprehensive set of 138 galactic rotation curves with no adjustable parameters other than the galactic mass to light ratios, and with the need for no dark matter whatsoever. With these global effects eliminating the need for dark matter, we see that invoking dark matter in galaxies could potentially be nothing more than an attempt to describe global physics effects in purely local galactic terms. Finally, we review some recent work by 't Hooft in which a connection between conformal gravity and Einstein gravity has been found. © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Luo J.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Ba S.,University of Connecticut | Zhang H.,Georgia Institute of Technology
MIS Quarterly: Management Information Systems | Year: 2012

Electronic commerce has grown rapidly in recent years. However, surveys of online customers continue to indicate that many remain unsatisfied with their online purchase experiences. Clearly, more research is needed to better understand what affects customers' evaluations of their online experiences. Through a large dataset gathered from two online websites, this study investigates the importance of product uncertainty and retailer visibility in customers' online purchase decisions, as well as the mitigating effects of retailer characteristics. We find that high product uncertainty and low retailer visibility have a negative impact on customer satisfaction. However, a retailer's service quality, website design, and pricing play important roles in mitigating the negative impact of high product uncertainty and low retailer visibility. Specifically, service quality can mitigate the negative impacts of low retailer visibility and high product uncertainty in online markets. Website design, on the other hand, helps to reduce the impact of product uncertainty when experience goods are involved.

Metersky M.L.,University of Connecticut
Therapeutic Advances in Respiratory Disease | Year: 2010

Therapies shown to be effective in cystic fibrosis are often provided to patients with bronchiectasis, without definitive evidence of benefit. In recent years, there has been increased interest in validating and developing new therapies for patients with noncystic fibrosis bronchiectasis. While inhaled tobramycin improves microbiologic parameters, improvements in outcomes have been more difficult to demonstrate, in part due to the occurrence of bronchospasm in a significant minority of treated patients. Outcome data from studies of inhaled aztreonam and ciprofloxacin have not yet been reported, although the microbiologic data appear to be promising. Preliminary data regarding inhaled hyperosmolar agents such as hypertonic saline and mannitol are also promising, but these therapies cannot yet be recommended for routine therapy of patients with bronchiectasis. Macrolide antibiotics have anti-inflammatory properties in patients with chronic suppurative lung disease, through a variety of mechanisms. They have been proven to be beneficial in diffuse panbronchiolitis and are commonly being used in patients with bronchiectasis. Many small studies support their use in this population, although several had methodologic flaws. Thus, although chronic low-dose macrolide therapy is often used in these patients, more conclusive evidence is awaited.

A WDM transmitter and/or receiver optoelectronic integrated circuit includes a plurality of microresonators and corresponding waveguides and couplers that are integrally formed on a substrate. For the WDM transmitter, the microresonators and waveguides are configured to generate a plurality of optical signals at different wavelengths. Each coupler includes a resonant cavity waveguide that is configured to transmit one optical signal from one waveguide to the output waveguide such that the plurality of optical signals are multiplexed on the output waveguide. For the WDM receiver, an input waveguide is configured to provide for propagation of a plurality of optical signals at different wavelengths. Each coupler includes a resonant cavity waveguide that is configured to transmit at least one optical signal from the input waveguide to one waveguide. The waveguides and microresonators are configured to perform optical-to-electrical conversion of the plurality of optical signals at different wavelengths that propagate in the waveguides.

In one aspect, the present disclosure provides a method including rotating a rotatable surface with an object positioned thereon to a plurality of angular positions. The method also includes capturing, via an x-ray microtomography device at each of the plurality of angular positions, a tomograph of the object. The method also includes summing each tomograph of the object to create a three-dimensional image of the object. The method also includes using an additive manufacturing machine to create a three-dimensional replica of the object using the three-dimensional image of the object.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: ENERGY,POWER,ADAPTIVE SYS | Award Amount: 300.00K | Year: 2016

This project investigates novel approaches to promote reliable networked microgrid operations in the face of various cyber and physical disturbances. Power distribution grid resiliency is a challenging problem with significant economic and security impacts that has been exacerbated in recent years by the increase in extreme weather events and cyber threats. Recently, networked microgrids have become an emerging paradigm that demonstrates resiliency benefit to their local customers. However, lack of awareness of stability margin, inadequate capability to respond to grid disturbances, and vulnerabilities to communication failure, delay, and cyber-attacks can undermine the capability of networked microgrids to improve distribution grid resiliency.

The research project will create and implement networked microgrids solutions on a novel cyber infrastructure to ensure distribution grid resiliency. This cyber infrastructure is based on Software-Defined Networking. Specifically, the project has three main objectives: (1) To establish a formal analysis method to tractably assess networked microgrid stability; (2) To devise a new concept of microgrid active fault management (AFM) enabled through online distributed optimization; and (3) To build a Software-Defined Networking (SDN) based architecture to enable highly resilient networked microgrids. The project will contribute new formal analysis theories for deeper understanding of microgrid stability under high levels of renewable generation. The idea of integrating distributed optimization and power electronic control will pave the way for building grid-friendly networked microgrids, significantly contributing to grid resiliency. The novel SDN-based architecture and techniques will open the door for innovations in devising secure, reliable, and fault-tolerant algorithms for managing resilient networked microgrids and active distribution networks. Overall, the proposed new model-based and data-intensive technologies together will provide scalable, dependable and intelligent solutions to otherwise intractable problems in integrating complex networked microgrids. Building on the teams successes in minority student recruitment and undergraduate education and leveraging existing resources, the education plan targets underrepresented minorities and pre-college students to contribute to the preparation of the next-generation workforce in power engineering. The research results will be integrated in new Microgrids courses for educating university students and power engineering professionals.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: TUES-Type 3 Project | Award Amount: 103.03K | Year: 2014

This collaborative project, designed to determine the outcomes of a long standing faculty development effort, includes four institutions, Yale University, the University of Colorado, Boulder, Cornell University, and the University of Connecticut. Over the last decade, the National Academies Summer Institutes (SIs) have trained almost 1,000 faculty and instructional staff in scientific t