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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.

Singer M.,University of Connecticut
Virulence | Year: 2010

There is growing awareness of the health implications of the fact that infectious agents often do not act independently; rather their disease potential is mediated in diverse and significant ways by their relationships with other pathogens. Pathogenpathogen interaction (PPI), for example, impacts various virulence factors in human infection. Although still in its infancy, the study of PPI, a form of epidemiological synergism, is emerging as an important arena of new research and new understanding in health and clinical care. The aims of this paper are to: (1) draw attention to the role of PPI in human disease patterns; (2) present the syndemics model as a biosocial approach for examining the nature, pathways, contexts, and health implications of PPI and (3) suggest the utility of this approach to PPI. Toward these ends, this paper (a) reviews three case examples of alternative PPIs, (b) describes the development and key concepts and components of the syndemics model with specific reference to interacting infectious agents, (c) contextualizes this discussion with a brief review of broader syndemics disease processes (not necessarily involving infections disease) and (d) comments on the research, treatment and prevention implications of syndemic interaction among pathogens. © 2010 Landes Bioscience.

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.

Elphick C.S.,University of Connecticut
Waterbirds | Year: 2010

Rice (Oryza sativa) is one of the world's most important crops. The crop is grown in at least 114 countries, occupies over 156 million ha of land annually, is a primary source of nutrition for over half the world's human population and constitutes over a fifth of the global grain supply. Rice is generally grown under flooded conditions and, if managed appropriately, can provide important habitat for wetland species. Waterfowl, wading birds, shorebirds and other waterbirds use rice fields, foraging on a variety of prey, nesting in the crop and in fringing vegetation, and staging during migration. Conflicts also exist, with some cropping practices harmful to birds and some bird activity detrimental to yield production. Much early research on waterbirds in rice fields was conducted in Mediterranean Europe with only scattered work elsewhere. More recently, there has been a growing focus on the conservation value of rice fields, with studies from most of the major regions where rice is grown. The body of research has included: community studies of the range of birds that use rice fields, detailed studies of endangered species, behavioral studies of reproductive success, foraging ecology and movement, and applied studies of cropping techniques. As the world's natural wetlands diminish, researchers studying waterbirds in rice fields are working to globalize interactions with each other. Also, some researchers are working closely with conservation groups and rice growers to identify ways to maximize the benefits of agricultural wetlands while minimizing the agronomic costs.

Puhl R.M.,University of Connecticut
International Journal of Obesity | Year: 2016

The prevalence of weight discrimination in the United States has led to increasing calls for legal measures to address weight-based inequities on a broader scale. This study examined public support in 2014 and 2015 for three proposed laws prohibiting weight discrimination, and compared findings with public attitudes towards the same laws from 2011 to 2013. An online survey was completed by a diverse national sample of US adults (N=2411) in June–July of 2014 and 2015 to assess their support for anti-discrimination legislation. Public support increased for the anti-discrimination laws from 2014 to 2015, and at least 71% of participants expressed support for each of the laws in both years. Compared with public support documented in 2011–2013, there was a significant increase in support in 2014–2015 for legislation to extend disability protections to individuals with obesity and for laws that would include body weight in existing state civil rights statutes. Consistently, high levels of support (78%) were documented across this 5-year period for laws to address weight-based discrimination in employment. As public approval is a powerful catalyst motivating political will needed to make policy changes, these findings provide important insights and implications for advancing policy-level discourse about remedies for weight discrimination.International Journal of Obesity advance online publication, 19 April 2016; doi:10.1038/ijo.2016.49. © 2016 Macmillan Publishers Limited

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.

Matthews R.A.,Louisiana State University | Barnes-Farrell J.L.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Occupational Health Psychology | Year: 2010

This manuscript reports the development of a measure of work and family domain boundary flexibility. Building on previous research, we propose an expanded definition of boundary flexibility that includes two components-flexibility-ability and flexibility-willingness-and we develop a measure designed to capture this more comprehensive definition of boundary flexibility. Flexibility-ability is conceptualized as an individual's perception of personal and situational constraints that affect boundary management, and flexibility-willingness is conceptualized as an individual difference variable that captures the motivation to engage in boundary flexing. An additional feature of domain boundaries, permeability, is also examined. Data are presented from two studies. Study 1 (N = 244) describes the development of a multiscale measure that extends current conceptual definitions of boundary flexibility. Study 2 (N = 225) describes the refinement and evaluation of this measure. Confirmatory factor analysis, reliability evidence, interscale correlations, and correlations with important work-family constructs (e.g., domain centrality, work-family conflict) provide initial construct validity evidence for the measure. © 2010 American Psychological Association.

Giorgi F.,International Center for Theoretical Physics | Anyah R.O.,University of Connecticut
Climate Research | Year: 2012

The RegCM model system was originally developed in the late 1980s, and it was the first limited area model applied to climate studies. Over the last 25 yr, the system has been im-proved through successive model versions (RegCM1 to RegCM4), incorporating increasingly comprehensive physics packages and interactively coupled components of the climate system (chemistry/aerosol, ocean, lake, biosphere). The present Climate Special includes studies using RegCM3 and the latest version RegCM4. The papers illustrate that RegCM is a flexible and versatile system which can be used for different regions of the World and for a wide range of applications. Plans for the development of the next non-hydrostatic version RegCM5 are also described. © 2012 Inter-Research.

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).

Decho A.W.,University of South Carolina | Norman R.S.,University of South Carolina | Visscher P.T.,University of Connecticut
Trends in Microbiology | Year: 2010

Much laboratory-based information exists on quorum sensing, a type of bacterial cell-to-cell communication that depends upon exchanges of molecular signals between neighboring cells. However, little is known about how this and other microbial sensing systems operate in nature. Geochemical and biological modifications of signals probably occur in extracellular environments, and these could disrupt intended communication if signals are no longer recognized. However, as we discuss here, signal alterations might result in other outcomes: if a modified signal is able to interact with a different receptor then further environmental information can be gained by the receiving cells. We also postulate that quorum sensing occurs within cell clusters, where signal dispersion might be significantly influenced by extracellular polymers. As a model system to discuss these points we use microbial mats - highly-structured biofilm communities living under sharply-defined, fluctuating geochemical gradients. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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.".

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.

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.

This paper provides the first faunal checklist for the family Cicadidae (Insecta: Hemiptera) in Luzon (including Marinduque), Philippines, comprising 33 species belonging to 12 genera. Six new species, Oncotympana grandis sp. nov., Oncotympana simonae sp. nov., Oncotympana brevis sp. nov., Oncotympana undata sp. nov., Psithyristria paratenuis sp. nov. and Psithyristria paracrassis sp. nov., are described. An unidentified species of Purana Distant is newly added to the cicada fauna of Luzon. Information on geographic distributions is provided. The genus Oncotympana Stål is diagnosed. Revised keys to the species of Oncotympana and Psithyristria Stål are provided. Copyright © 2010. Magnolia Press.

Bockorny B.,University of Connecticut | Codreanu I.,University of Arizona | Dasanu C.A.,St Francis Hospital and Medical Center
British Journal of Haematology | Year: 2012

Richter transformation in chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) represents an entity of considerable genetic, molecular, immunological and clinical heterogeneity. A rare occurrence, Hodgkin variant of Richter syndrome, has not been comprehensively characterized or systematized to date. We conducted a retrospective analysis of the existing cases of Hodgkin lymphoma as Richter syndrome reported in the medical literature in the previous three and a half decades. Our search identified 86 such patients; this entity affects predominantly older men and the most common histological subtype is mixed cellularity. Interval between the diagnosis of CLL and subsequent development of Hodgkin lymphoma is circa 4·3years. The overall survival of patients was approximately 1·7years in our analysed cohort. However, our pooled data showed that patients in whom CLL had been treated with fludarabine had a shorter survival after transformation compared to the ones not treated with this agent. The role of immunosuppression and Epstein-Barr virus infection in the aetiopathogenesis of this entity remains to be clarified. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Coats V.C.,University of Maine, United States | Rumpho M.E.,University of Connecticut
Frontiers in Microbiology | Year: 2014

Plants in terrestrial systems have evolved in direct association with microbes functioning as both agonists and antagonists of plant fitness and adaptability. As such, investigations that segregate plants and microbes provide only a limited scope of the biotic interactions that dictate plant community structure and composition in natural systems. Invasive plants provide an excellent working model to compare and contrast the effects of microbial communities associated with natural plant populations on plant fitness, adaptation, and fecundity. The last decade of DNA sequencing technology advancements opened the door to microbial community analysis, which has led to an increased awareness of the importance of an organism's microbiome and the disease states associated with microbiome shifts. Employing microbiome analysis to study the symbiotic networks associated with invasive plants will help us to understand what microorganisms contribute to plant fitness in natural systems, how different soil microbial communities impact plant fitness and adaptability, specificity of host-microbe interactions in natural plant populations, and the selective pressures that dictate the structure of above-ground and below-ground biotic communities. This review discusses recent advances in invasive plant biology that have resulted from microbiome analyses as well as the microbial factors that direct plant fitness and adaptability in natural systems. © 2014 Coats and Rumpho.

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.

Motivation: Gene tree represents the evolutionary history of gene lineages that originate from multiple related populations. Under the multispecies coalescent model, lineages may coalesce outside the species (population) boundary. Given a species tree (with branch lengths), the gene tree probability is the probability of observing a specific gene tree topology under the multispecies coalescent model. There are two existing algorithms for computing the exact gene tree probability. The first algorithm is due to Degnan and Salter, where they enumerate all the so-called coalescent histories for the given species tree and the gene tree topology. Their algorithm runs in exponential time in the number of gene lineages in general. The second algorithm is the STELLS algorithm (2012), which is usually faster but also runs in exponential time in almost all the cases. Results: In this article, we present a new algorithm, called CompactCH, for computing the exact gene tree probability. This new algorithm is based on the notion of compact coalescent histories: multiple coalescent histories are represented by a single compact coalescent history. The key advantage of our new algorithm is that it runs in polynomial time in the number of gene lineages if the number of populations is fixed to be a constant. The new algorithm is more efficient than the STELLS algorithm both in theory and in practice when the number of populations is small and there are multiple gene lineages from each population. As an application, we show that CompactCH can be applied in the inference of population tree (i.e. the population divergence history) from population haplotypes. Simulation results show that the CompactCH algorithm enables efficient and accurate inference of population trees with much more haplotypes than a previous approach. © 2016 The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.

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.

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.

In Afghanistan ethnic Hazaras are a group with a long history of marginalization, and even outright persecution, mainly because of their Shi'a Muslim faith. Only after the international intervention in 2001 have socio-economic opportunities started to open up for Hazaras. Hazaras, however, maintain a strong perception of still being considered second-class citizens, claiming to be overlooked by the Afghan government and allotted fewer funds by the international development community. This paper examines Hazara perceptions of marginality with reference to one issue: the lack of state-provided electricity in Bamyan province, which many consider the Hazara homeland. Anti-government protests in Bamyan often revolve around this particular issue, and the demand for electricity has become part of the permanent landscape, through a lantern sculpture in Bamyan's main square, as well as through the experience of living one's everyday life with a lack of easily available electric light. The lack of electricity becomes an embodied, daily reminder of perceived subordination to other religio-ethnic groups and the feeling of being left behind by the international community. © 2014 Southseries Inc.

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.

Wakunami K.,Tokyo Institute of Technology | Yamaguchi M.,Tokyo Institute of Technology | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Optics Letters | Year: 2012

We present a high-resolution three-dimensional (3D) holographic display using a set of elemental images obtained by passive sensing integral imaging (II). Hologram calculations using a high-density ray-sampling plane are achieved from the elemental images captured by II. In II display, ray sampling by lenslet array and light diffraction limits the achievable resolution. Our approach can improve the resolution since target objects are captured in focus and then light-ray information is interpolated and resampled with higher density on ray-sampling plane located near the object to be converted into the wavefront. Numerical experimental results show that the 3D scene, composed of plural objects at different depths from the display, can be reconstructed with order of magnitude higher resolution by the proposed technique. © 2012 Optical Society of America.

Griffith A.B.,Wellesley College | Salguero-Gomez R.,University of Queensland | Salguero-Gomez R.,Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research | Merow C.,University of Connecticut | Mcmahon S.,Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
Journal of Ecology | Year: 2016

Population ecology, the discipline that studies the dynamics of species' populations and how they interact with the environment, has been one of the most prolific fields of ecology and evolution. Demographic research is central to quantifying population-level processes and their underlying mechanisms and has provided critical contributions to a diversity of research fields. Examples include the spread of infectious diseases, eco-evolutionary dynamics and rapid evolution, mechanisms underlying invasions and extinctions, and forest productivity. As the fates of individual organisms are influenced by, and subsequently underlie, many other patterns and processes, we suggest that connecting demography beyond the population level offers promising avenues of innovation in ecology and evolution. Under the premise that population-level processes are an ideal common currency within ecology and evolution, we organized the British Ecological Society Symposium, Demography Beyond the Population. This event attracted international researchers who are applying demographic theory and approaches to a broad range of questions. This special feature builds off of the symposium and illustrates the ability of demography to connect across diverse research areas in ecology and evolution, including functional traits, transient dynamics, quantitative genetics, environmental drivers and feedbacks, land management and other topics. In addition to highlighting the contributed manuscripts, this editorial provides a brief background on the development of the discipline and suggests how demographic tools may be used in novel ways to study more than just populations. Synthesis. This special feature integrates novel lines of research in the vast field of demography that directly interact with other ecological and evolutionary disciplines. The cross-disciplinary potential of demography is further emphasized by the fact that its 20 manuscripts are spread across all six journals of the British Ecological Society. Together, these articles highlight that there is much to be gained by linking demography to other disciplines and scales in ecology and evolution. This special feature integrates novel lines of research in the vast field of demography that directly interact with other ecological and evolutionary disciplines. The cross-disciplinary potential of demography is further emphasized by the fact that its 20 manuscripts are spread across all six journals of the British Ecological Society. Together, these articles highlight that there is much to be gained by linking demography to other disciplines and scales in ecology and evolution. © 2016 British Ecological Society.

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.

Whitney M.M.,University of Connecticut | Codiga D.L.,University of Rhode Island
Journal of Physical Oceanography | Year: 2011

The response to wind events in the Long Island Sound (LIS), a large macrotidal estuary influenced by rotation and stratification, is studied using long-term ferry-based current observations near the mouth, unstratified and stratified numerical simulations forced with along-estuary winds, and analytic solutions based on linear barotropic theory. The observed wind-event velocity anomalies for down-estuary winds have surfaceintensified downwind flows flanking a deeper central upwind flow. Response to up-estuary wind events has a weaker magnitude and a broader and thicker downwind flow. The downwind and upwind flows are more laterally aligned than vertically layered, as determined by a newly defined dimensionless lateral alignment index. Simulation results and analytic solutions share the gross spatial patterns of the observed response, though statistical measures indicate weak agreement. Along-estuary variations in the simulation results and analytic solutions follow similar trends and are strongly influenced by variations of the bathymetric cross section. Wind-event anomalies in the section-averaged dynamics are dominated by the along-estuary pressure gradient opposing wind stress. In the stratified simulation, wind-driven density advection, isopycnal straining, and stirring modify stratification, eddy viscosities, and baroclinic pressure gradients. The wind-event response of the baroclinic pressure gradient is 15% of the barotropic gradient but is dynamically linked to response differences to up-estuary and down-estuary winds. The wind-event response asymmetries near the mouth are in qualitative agreement with observations and are opposite to asymmetries closer to the head. © 2011 American Meteorological Society.

Wu Y.,University of Connecticut
Bioinformatics | Year: 2015

Motivation: Population trees represent past population divergence histories. The inference of population trees can be useful for the study of population evolution. With the size of data increases in large-scale population genetic projects, such as the 1000 Genomes Project, there are new computational challenges for ancestral population inference, including population tree inference. Existing methods for population tree inference are mainly designed for unlinked genetic variants (e.g. single nucleotide polymorphisms or SNPs). There is a potential loss of information by not considering the haplotypes. Results: In this article, we propose a new population tree inference method (called STELLSH) based on coalescent likelihood. The likelihood is for haplotypes over multiple SNPs within a non-recombining region, not unlinked variants. Unlike many existing ancestral inference methods, STELLSH does not use Monte Carlo approaches when computing the likelihood. For efficient computation, the likelihood model is approximated but still retains much information about population divergence history. STELLSH can find the maximum likelihood population tree based on the approximate likelihood. We show through simulation data and the 1000 Genomes Project data that STELLSH gives reasonably accurate inference results. STELLSH is reasonably efficient for data of current interest and can scale to handle whole-genome data. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

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.

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.

Volgushev M.,University of Connecticut
Neuroscientist | Year: 2016

The time course of behaviorally relevant environmental events sets temporal constraints on neuronal processing. How does the mammalian brain make use of the increasingly complex networks of the neocortex, while making decisions and executing behavioral reactions within a reasonable time? The key parameter determining the speed of computations in neuronal networks is a time interval that neuronal ensembles need to process changes at their input and communicate results of this processing to downstream neurons. Theoretical analysis identified basic requirements for fast processing: use of neuronal populations for encoding, background activity, and fast onset dynamics of action potentials in neurons. Experimental evidence shows that populations of neocortical neurons fulfil these requirements. Indeed, they can change firing rate in response to input perturbations very quickly, within 1 to 3 ms, and encode high-frequency components of the input by phase-locking their spiking to frequencies up to 300 to 1000 Hz. This implies that time unit of computations by cortical ensembles is only few, 1 to 3 ms, which is considerably faster than the membrane time constant of individual neurons. The ability of cortical neuronal ensembles to communicate on a millisecond time scale allows for complex, multiple-step processing and precise coordination of neuronal activity in parallel processing streams, while keeping the speed of behavioral reactions within environmentally set temporal constraints. © SAGE Publications.

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.

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.

Niemeyer K.E.,Case Western Reserve University | Sung C.-J.,University of Connecticut
Combustion and Flame | Year: 2011

The importance of graph search algorithm choice to the directed relation graph with error propagation (DRGEP) method is studied by comparing basic and modified depth-first search, basic and R-value-based breadth-first search (RBFS), and Dijkstra's algorithm. By using each algorithm with DRGEP to produce skeletal mechanisms from a detailed mechanism for n-heptane with randomly-shuffled species order, it is demonstrated that only Dijkstra's algorithm and RBFS produce results independent of species order. In addition, each algorithm is used with DRGEP to generate skeletal mechanisms for n-heptane covering a comprehensive range of autoignition conditions for pressure, temperature, and equivalence ratio. Dijkstra's algorithm combined with a coefficient scaling approach is demonstrated to produce the most compact skeletal mechanism with a similar performance compared to larger skeletal mechanisms resulting from the other algorithms. The computational efficiency of each algorithm is also compared by applying the DRGEP method with each search algorithm on the large detailed mechanism for n-alkanes covering n-octane to n-hexadecane with 2115 species and 8157 reactions. Dijkstra's algorithm implemented with a binary heap priority queue is demonstrated as the most efficient method, with a CPU cost two orders of magnitude less than the other search algorithms. © 2010 The Combustion Institute.

Chrysochoou M.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering | Year: 2014

The design of chemical stabilization of clay soils typically relies on empirical studies that utilize 28-day strength, measured as unconfined compressive strength (UCS) or California Bearing Ratio (CBR), as the design criterion. At present, it is generally not possible to extrapolate the results of individual studies to other soils, mainly because there is no quantitative understanding of the chemical reactions that cause strength increase over time. Accordingly, the objective of this study was to investigate whether quantitative X-ray diffraction (QXRD) can be used to establish a quantitative relationship between the mineralogical (microscopic) and strength (macroscopic) properties of kaolinite clay stabilized lime, portland cement, and Class C fly ash. The UCS was observed to change linearly with dry unit weight and logarithmically with time up to 300 days of curing. The kaolinite content in the stabilized samples also decreased logarithmically with time, accompanied by a concomitant increase in the amorphous content that represents the formation of calcium silicate hydrate (CSH) and calcium aluminate hydrate (CAH). The overall result was that a highly linear relationship was observed between the UCS and the kaolinite/amorphous content as determined by QXRD. This relationship was different for each of the three stabilizers because portland cement and fly ash exhibit additional cementitious reactions in addition to the dissolution of kaolinite to form CSH/CAH. The study indicates that QXRD is a viable method to produce quantitative assessments of soil mineralogy and that it is possible to pursue the development of models that predict strength of chemically stabilized soils as a function of fundamental parameters, including soil mineralogy and dry unit weight. © 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Hatmaker D.M.,University of Connecticut
Engineering Studies | Year: 2012

This paper examines professional identity construction within engineering. It is meant to contribute toward better understanding dynamics surrounding women's status within engineering in the United States, where women comprise only 11% of the engineering workforce and the culture has been described as gendered masculine. This article considers the multiple roles engineers enact at work and how the discourse surrounding these roles may help to maintain a gendered image of engineering despite the actual practice. Using interview data from women and men engineers, this paper identifies six different roles that the engineers enacted at work. These roles range from being more technical to more social and are not presented in an either/or fashion as the social/technical binary would expect. From the participants' narratives, I found that engineers manage these roles within the context of their professional identity using a process I call 'role configuration,' which takes three different forms: balancing, grafting, and swapping. Women and men alike were comfortable with their multi-faceted roles, yet at times participants discussed the roles in a gendered and stereotyped manner. This discourse may help to perpetuate the gendered masculine image of the engineering culture and work despite the actual practices in which engineers engage. © 2012 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

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.

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.

Wang S.,Case Western Reserve University | Dormidontova E.E.,Case Western Reserve University | Dormidontova E.E.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2012

Selectivity of interactions between nanoparticles functionalized by tethered ligands and cell surfaces with different densities of receptors plays an essential role in biorecognition and its implementation in nanobiomedicine. We show that the onset of nanoparticle adsorption has a universal character for a range of nanoparticles: the onset receptor density decreases exponentially with the energy of ligand-receptor binding and inversely with the ligand density. We demonstrate that a bimodal tether distribution, which permits shielding ligands by longer nonfunctional tethers, leads to extra loss of entropy at the adsorption onset, enhancing the selectivity. © 2012 American Physical Society.

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.

Bohannon R.W.,University of Connecticut
Isokinetics and Exercise Science | Year: 2012

Hand-held dynamometry is a portable and objective alternative for measuring muscle strength. This paper reviews issues relevant to instrumentation and procedures. Thereafter it summarizes information on the clinimetric properties of hand-held dynamometry. Normative values are briefly addressed. © 2012 - IOS Press and the authors. All rights reserved.

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.

Wille K.,University of Connecticut | El-Tawil S.,University of Michigan | Naaman A.E.,University of Michigan
Cement and Concrete Composites | Year: 2014

Enhanced matrix packing density and tailored fiber-to-matrix interface bond properties have led to the recent development of ultra-high performance fiber reinforced concrete (UHP-FRC) with improved material tensile performance in terms of strength, ductility and energy absorption capacity. The objective of this research is to experimentally investigate and analyze the uniaxial tensile behavior of the new material. The paper reviews and categorizes a variety of tensile test setups used by other researchers and presents a revised tensile set up tailored to obtain reliable results with minimal preparation effort. The experimental investigation considers three types of steel fibers, each in three different volume fractions. Elastic, strain hardening and softening tensile parameters, such as first cracking stress and strain, elastic and strain hardening modulus, composite strength and energy dissipation capacity, of the UHP-FRCs are characterized, analyzed and linked to the crack pattern observed by microscopic analysis. Models are proposed for representing the tensile stress-strain response of the material. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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.

Cepeda-Gomez R.,Santo Tomas University of Colombia | Olgac N.,University of Connecticut
Systems and Control Letters | Year: 2013

An investigation of double-integrator agents with directed asymmetric consensus protocols and multiple rationally independent time delays is presented in this paper from two novel perspectives. First, we complement the group consensus literature on crucial stability analysis, using a recent technique called the Cluster Treatment of Characteristic Roots (CTCR) for the first time on this class of time-delayed systems. The CTCR paradigm is pursued after a block-diagonalization (mode-decoupling) transformation on the system. This treatment produces some unique stability tables for the dynamics in the space of the delays which are non-conservative and exhaustive. Second, a novel concept of spectral delay space is presented, as an overture to the CTCR for the determination of the complete set of stability-crossing (switching) hypersurfaces in the delay space. Examples are provided to display the strengths and efficiency of this new stability analysis mechanism. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Shah B.J.,Mount Sinai School of Medicine | Chokhavatia S.,Mount Sinai School of Medicine | Rose S.,University of Connecticut
American Journal of Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

Fecal incontinence (FI) is a common gastrointestinal (GI) complaint in patients aged 65 years and older. This evidence-based review article discusses the epidemiology, pathophysiology, evaluation, and management of FI in the geriatric population. We emphasize aging-related changes leading to and impacting evaluation and treatment of this symptom while incorporating the core geriatric principles of functional status and management aligned with patient preference and goals of care. © 2012 by the American College of Gastroenterology.

May E.R.,University of Connecticut | Arora K.,University of Michigan | Brooks III C.L.,University of Michigan
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2014

Many viruses undergo large-scale conformational changes during their life cycles. Blocking the transition from one stage of the life cycle to the next is an attractive strategy for the development of antiviral compounds. In this work, we have constructed an icosahedrally symmetric, low-energy pathway for the maturation transition of bacteriophage HK97. By conducting constant-pH molecular dynamics simulations on this pathway, we identify which residues are contributing most significantly to shifting the stability between the states along the pathway under differing pH conditions. We further analyze these data to establish the connection between critical residues and important structural motifs which undergo reorganization during maturation. We go on to show how DNA packaging can induce spontaneous reorganization of the capsid during maturation. © 2014 American Chemical Society.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Ecological ordination can reveal gradients in the species composition of fossil assemblages that can be correlated with paleoenvironmental gradients. Ordinations of simulated data sets suggest that nonmetric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) generally produces less distorted results than detrended correspondence analysis (DCA). We ordinated 113 brachiopod-dominated samples from the Frasnian (Late Devonian) Brallier, Scherr, and lower Foreknobs Formations of southwest Virginia, which represent a range of siliciclastic marine paleoenvironments. A clear environmental signal in the ordination results was obscured by (apparently) opportunistic species that occurred at high abundance in multiple environments; samples dominated by these species aggregated in ordination space regardless of paleoenvironmental provenance. After the opportunist-dominated samples were removed, NMDS revealed a gradient in species composition that was highly correlated with substrate (grain size); a second, orthogonal gradient likely reflects variation in disturbance intensity or frequency within grain-size regimes. Additional environmental or ecological factors, such as oxygenation, may also be related to the gradients. These two gradients, plus the environmental factors that controlled the occurrence of opportunistic species, explain much of the variation in assemblage composition in the fauna. In general, the composition of fossil assemblages is probably influenced by multiple paleoecological and paleoenvironmental factors, but many of these can be decomposed and analyzed. © 2010 The Paleontological Society. All rights reserved.

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.

Bains R.M.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Nursing | Year: 2014

Problem: African American adolescents access mental health services at lower rates than their Caucasian counterparts, thus resulting in a large disparity. The purpose of the study was to understand the experiences of African American adolescents in dealing with mental health conditions and what led to or hindered their access to mental health services. Methods: A metasynthesis of six qualitative studies was conducted using the meta-ethnographic approach by Noblit and Hare. Findings: Four reciprocal themes illuminating the experiences of African American adolescents with mental health issues were revealed: uncertainty and soul searching, strength of the inner circle, shame and reluctance, belief in the system. Each of the themes was explored in detail through the rich quotations of the adolescents. Conclusions: The findings provided an insight and understanding into the process the adolescents went through before seeking help and may aid as a framework for designing interventions to better serve this vulnerable population. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Frank T.D.,University of Connecticut
Nonlinear Dynamics, Psychology, and Life Sciences | Year: 2015

Previous research has demonstrated that perceiving, thinking, and acting are human activities that correspond to self-organized patterns. The emergence of such patterns can be completely described in terms of the dynamics of the pattern amplitudes, which are referred to as order parameters. The patterns emerge at bifurcations points when certain system parameters internal and external to a human agent exceed critical values. At issue is how one might study the order parameter dynamics for sequences of consecutive, emergent perceptual, cognitive, or behavioral activities. In particular, these activities may in turn impact the system parameters that have led to the emergence of the activities in the first place. This interplay between order parameter dynamics and system parameter dynamics is discussed in general and formulated in mathematical terms. Previous work that has made use of this twotiered framework of order parameter and system parameter dynamics are briefly addressed. As an application, a model for perception under functional fixedness is presented. Finally, it is argued that the phenomena that emerge in this framework and can be observed when human agents perceive, think, and act are just as likely to occur in pattern formation systems of the inanimate world. Consequently, these phenomena do not necessarily have a neurophysiological basis but should instead be understood from the perspective of the theory of selforganization. © 2015 Society for Chaos Theory in Psychology & Life Sciences.

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.

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.

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.

Lee Y.J.,University of Connecticut
Mitteilungen aus dem Museum fur Naturkunde in Berlin - Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift | Year: 2012

Two new cicada genera and species, Paratanna parata gen. et sp. n. and Subtibicina tigris gen. et sp. n., are described from India. Paratanna gen. n. is closely related to Tanna Distant, 1905 and is placed in the subtribe Leptopsaltriina of the tribe Cicadini in the subfamily Cicadinae. Subtibicina gen. n. is closely related to Tibicina Amyot, 1847 and is placed in the tribe Tibicinini in the subfamily Tibicininae. Katoa Ouchi, 1938 is transferred from Tibicinini to Cicadettini of the subfamily Cicadettinae. Klapperichicen Dlabola, 1957 is transferred from Tibicinini to Cicadatrini of the subfamily Cicadinae. Tibicinini includes the following nine genera: Tibicina, Okanagana Distant, 1905, Paharia Distant, 1905, Subtibicina gen. n., Tibicinoides Distant, 1914, Clidophleps Van Duzee, 1915, Okanagodes Davis, 1919, Subpsaltria Chen, 1943 and Ahomana Distant, 1905. Cicadatrini includes the following seven genera: Cicadatra Kolenati, 1857, Klapperichicen, Psalmocharias Kirkaldy, 1908, Shaoshia Wei, Ahmed & Rizvi, 2010, Mogannia Amyot & Audinet-Serville, 1843, Nipponosemia Kato, 1925 and Emathia Stål, 1866. © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

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.

Lee Y.J.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Asia-Pacific Entomology | Year: 2012

The cicada genus Semia Matsumura from East Asia is taxonomically reviewed. Pomponia lachna Lei and Chou and Terpnosia majuscula Distant are transferred to Semia to become Semia lachna (Lei and Chou) comb. nov. and Semia majuscula (Distant) comb. nov. A revised description of Semia is provided. Diagnoses and synonymic lists for the four species of Semia are provided. A key to the four Semia species is also provided. © 2012 Korean Society of Applied Entomology, Taiwan Entomological Society and Malaysian Plant Protection Society.

Kelty-Stephen D.G.,Grinnell College | Dixon J.A.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance | Year: 2014

Intermodal integration required for perceptual learning tasks is rife with individual differences. Participants vary in how they use perceptual information to one modality. One participant alone might change her own response over time. Participants vary further in their use of feedback through one modality to inform another modality. Two experiments test the general hypothesis that perceptual-motor fluctuations reveal both information use within modality and coordination among modalities. Experiment 1 focuses on perceptual learning in dynamic touch, in which participants use exploratory hand-wielding of unseen objects to make visually guided length judgments and use visual feedback to rescale their judgments of the same mechanical information. Previous research found that the degree of fractal temporal scaling (i.e., "fractality") in hand-wielding moderates the use of mechanical information. Experiment 1 shows that head-sway fractality moderates the use of visual information. Further, experience with feedback increases head-sway fractality and prolongs its effect on later hand-wielding fractality. Experiment 2 replicates effects of head-sway fractality moderating use of visual information in a purely visualjudgment task. Together, these findings suggest that fractal fluctuations may provide a modal-general window onto not just how participants use perceptual information but also how well they may integrate information among different modalities. © 2014 American Psychological Association.

The genus Terpnosia Distant is newly defined. Terpnosia elegans (Kirby) stat. rev. is resurrected from junior synonymy with Terpnosia psecas (Walker). Seven species are now considered to belong to Terpnosia sensu stricto, including two species currently placed in this genus: T. psecas (Walker) and T. elegans (Kirby) stat. rev. Five species are transferred from Pomponia Stål to Terpnosia: T. polei (Henry) comb. nov., T. lactea (Distant) comb. nov., T. similis (Schmidt) comb. nov., T. simusa (Boulard) comb. nov., and T. graecina (Distant) comb. nov. Yezoterpnosia Matsumura stat. rev. is resurrected from junior synonymy with Terpnosia. Six species formerly in the genus Terpnosia are transferred to Yezoterpnosia: Y. nigricosta (De Motschulsky), Y. ichangensis (Liu) comb. nov., Y. shaanxiensis (Sanborn) comb. nov., Y. vacua (Olivier) comb. nov., Y. obscura (Kato) comb. nov., and Y. fuscoapicalis (Kato) comb. nov. Terpnosia is placed in the subtribe Psithyristriina of the tribe Cicadini, and Yezoterpnosia is placed in the subtribe Leptopsaltriina of Cicadini. Terpnosiina syn. nov. is synonymized with Psithyristriina. © 2011 Korean Society of Applied Entomology, Taiwan Entomological Society and Malaysian Plant Protection Society.

Presley S.J.,University of Connecticut
Biological Journal of the Linnean Society | Year: 2012

The structure and composition of populations may be molded by multiple evolutionary and ecological mechanisms, with natural selection affecting sex ratios as well as the distributions of each sex throughout the environment. To address sex-based aspects of population structure, I evaluated sex ratios, co-occurrence of the sexes, correlations of abundance of the sexes, and dispersion of individuals of each sex for each of 34 host-ectoparasite associations from Paraguayan bats. Of the 34 host-ectoparasite associations, 23 exhibited positive co-occurrence, 27 exhibited positive correlation of abundances, three exhibited male sex bias, one exhibited female sex bias, 27 had clumped distributions of males, and 26 had clumped distributions of females. No associations exhibited negative co-occurrence, negative correlation of abundance, or hyperdispersed males or females. There was no evidence for sexual segregation, sex-based niche partitioning, or intrasexual selection in any host-ectoparasite association. Previously proposed mechanisms (e.g. pre-partum sex bias, local mate competition, or mortality from host grooming) fail to explain observed patterns of sex bias. For ectoparasites of hosts that occupy permanent roost sites, sex-specific behaviour related to reproduction may make females more susceptible to off-host predation, and less likely to be present in samples from bats captured away from the roost. © 2012 The Linnean Society of London.

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.

Love K.L.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Transcultural Nursing | Year: 2010

Purpose: This study explored the phenomenon of socialization among African American nursing students in predominantly White universities. Recruitment and retention of African American nursing students is in lower percentages compared with other groups. Many nursing schools reflect a culture of the White middle class, which may present a barrier to minority students by requiring students to socialize to a culture different from their own. Overcoming such barriers cannot begin until the experience of socialization is understood. Design: A sample consisting of eight co-researchers was used who all attended nursing school at a predominantly White university. Interviews were analyzed using Colaizzi's phenomenological method. Results: The following six themes emerged: Theme 1-The Strength to Pursue More, Theme 2-Encounters With Discrimination, Theme 3-Pressure to Succeed, Theme 4-Isolation and Sticking Together, Theme 5-To Fit In and Talk White, and Theme 6-To Learn With New Friends and Old Ones. Conclusions: This study found a strongly consistent process of socialization to the dominant norm, and raised questions about the effects of this process on African American nursing students and its impact on improving patient care. © The Author(s) 2010.

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.

Park C.L.,University of Connecticut
Quality of life research : an international journal of quality of life aspects of treatment, care and rehabilitation | Year: 2014

Scientific advances in treatments and outcomes for those diagnosed with cancer in late adolescence and early adulthood depend, in part, on the availability of adequate assessment tools to measure health-related quality of life (HRQOL) for survivors in this age group. Domains especially relevant to late adolescence and young adulthood (LAYA; e.g., education and career, committed romantic relationships, worldview formation) are typically overlooked in studies assessing the impact of cancer, usually more appropriate for middle-aged or older survivors. Current HRQOL measures also tend to assess issues that are salient during or shortly after treatment rather than reflecting life years after treatment. To develop a new measure to better capture the experience of LAYA cancer survivors in longer-term survivorship (the LAYA Survivorship-Related Quality of Life measure, LAYA-SRQL), we completed an extensive measure development process. After a literature review and focus groups with LAYA cancer survivors, we generated items and ran confirmatory factor and reliability analyses using a sample of 292 LAYA cancer survivors. We then examined validity using existing measures of physical and mental health, quality of life, and impact of cancer. The final model consisted of two domains (satisfaction and impact), each consisting of ten factors: existential/spirituality, coping, relationship, dependence, vitality, health care, education/career, fertility, intimacy/sexuality, and cognition/memory. Confirmatory factor analysis and validity analyses indicated that the LAYA-SRQL is a psychometrically sound instrument with good validity. The LAYA-SRQL fills an important need in survivorship research, providing a way to assess HRQOL in LAYAs in a developmentally informed way.

Gui C.,University of Connecticut | Gui C.,Hunan University
Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis | Year: 2012

In this paper, we prove even symmetry of monotone traveling wave solutions to the balanced Allen-Cahn equation in the entire plane. Related results for the unbalanced Allen-Cahn equation are also discussed. © 2011 Springer-Verlag.

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.

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.

Ledermann T.,University of Basel | Kenny D.A.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Family Psychology | Year: 2012

Studying dyads, very often there is a theoretical construct that has an effect on both members, such as relationship harmony or shared environment. To model such influences, the common fate model (CFM) is often the most appropriate approach. In this article, we address conceptual and statistical issues in the use of the standard CFM and present a series of variations, all of which are estimated by structural equation modeling (SEM). For indistinguishable dyad members (e.g., gay couples), we describe the use of a multilevel SEM method. Throughout the paper, we draw connections to the actor-partner interdependence model (APIM). We also discuss the analysis of hybrid models that combines both the CFM and the APIM. The models are illustrated using data from heterosexual couples. © 2011 American Psychological Association.

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.

Javanainen J.,University of Connecticut | Ruostekoski J.,University of Southampton
New Journal of Physics | Year: 2013

We develop a classical theoretical description for nonlinear many-body dynamics that incorporates the back-action of a continuous measurement process. The classical approach is compared with the exact quantum solution in an example with an atomic Bose-Einstein condensate in a double-well potential where the atom numbers in both potential wells are monitored by light scattering. In the classical description, the back-action of the measurements appears as diffusion of the relative phase of the condensates on each side of the trap. When the measurements are frequent enough to resolve the system dynamics, the system behaves classically. This happens even deep in the quantum regime, and demonstrates how classical physics emerges from quantum mechanics as a result of measurement back-action. © IOP Publishing and Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft.

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.

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.

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.

Cromley E.,University of Connecticut
Progress in community health partnerships : research, education, and action | Year: 2011

While neighborhood-based approaches to eliminate health disparities are on the rise, there is little guidance on how researchers may engage with community partners to select geographic areas for interventions to reduce health disparities. We aimed to identify a small geographic area to target interventions to improve diabetes-related outcomes. We describe lessons learned from a community-engaged approach to specify the geographic area of focus. A community-academic partnership of more than 20 organizations collaborated to develop and employ a 5-stage process to specify a target area for diabetes preventions and control activities. A coalition with local knowledge and ties to the community can develop criteria and direct a process leading to selection of a geographic area, increased research capacity, and strengthened relationships among partners. A participatory approach can be effective in defining a geographic area for targeting interventions to reduce health disparities.

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.

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.

Hammerschmidt C.R.,Wright State University | Fitzgerald W.F.,University of Connecticut
Environmental Science and Technology | Year: 2010

Sunlight-induced decomposition is the principal sink for methylmercury (CH 3Hg +) in arctic Alaskan lakes and reduces its availability for accumulation in aquatic food webs. However, the mechanistic chemistry of this process in natural waters is unknown. We examined experimentally the mechanism of photochemical CH 3Hg + decomposition in filter-sterilized epilimnetic waters of Toolik Lake in arctic Alaska (68° 38'N, 149° 36W), a region illuminated by sunlight almost continuously during the summer. Results from in situ incubation tests indicate that CH 3Hg + is not decomposed principally by either direct photolysis (i.e., no degradation in reagent-grade water) or primary photochemical reactions with dissolved organic material. The preeminent role of labile Fe and associated photochemically produced reactive oxygen species is implicated by tests that show 1) additions of Fe(III) to reagent-grade water enhance CH 3Hg + photodecomposition, 2) strong complexation of ambient Fe(III) with desferrioxamine B inhibits the reaction in lake water, and 3) experimental additions of organic molecules that scavenge hydroxyl radicals specifically among reactive oxygen species (dimethylsulfoxide and formic acid) inhibit CH 3Hg + degradation. Lake-water dilution and Fe(III) addition experiments indicate that Fe is not the limiting reactant for CH3Hg+ photodecomposition in Toolik Lake, which is consistent with prior results indicating that photon flux is a major control. These results demonstrate that CH3Hg+ is decomposed in natural surface water by oxidants, apparently hydroxyl radical, generated from the photo-Fenton reaction. © 2010 American Chemical Society.

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.

Torgersen T.,University of Connecticut | Torgersen T.,National Science Foundation
Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems | Year: 2010

The existing measures of the 4He flux from the Earth's continental solid surface have been evaluated collectively. The lognormal mean of continental crustal flux measurements (n = 33) globally covering many geological environments is 4.18 × 1010 4He atoms m-2 s-1 with an estimated one sigma variance of*/45X based on an assumption of symmetric error bars (lognormal distribution provides a standard deviation with a multiplication or division factor (*/) by which the mean may statistically vary). The range of the continental 4He degassing flux (95th percentile) increases with decreasing time scales (to*/∼106X at 0.5 year) and decreasing space scales (to*/∼106X at 1 km). The statistics can be interpreted as reflecting natural variability and suggest that the mechanisms transporting the crustal helium degassing flux contain a high degree of both spatial and temporal variability. This lognormal mean of the continental degassing flux of 4He as well as the (n = 271) estimate of degassing from Precambrian Shield lakes are both approximately equivalent to the radiogenic production rate for 4He in the whole crust. Large-scale vertical mass transport in continental crust is estimated as scaled values of the order 10-5 cm2 s-1 for helium (over 2 Gyr and 40 km vertically) versus 10-2 cm2 s-1 for heat. This rate of mass transport requires not only release of He from the solid phase via diffusion, fracturing, or comminution but also an enhanced rate of mass transport facilitated by some degree of fluid advection. This further implies a separation of heat and mass during transport which will significantly influence the interpretations of heat and 3He/4He relations. Copyright 2010 by the American Geophysical Union.

Rivenson Y.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev | Stern A.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Optics Express | Year: 2010

Super-resolution is an important goal of many image acquisition systems. Here we demonstrate the possibility of achieving super-resolution with a single exposure by combining the well known optical scheme of double random phase encoding which has been traditionally used for encryption with results from the relatively new and emerging field of compressive sensing. It is shown that the proposed model can be applied for recovering images from a general image degrading model caused by both diffraction and geometrical limited resolution. ©2010 Optical Society of America.

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.

Naigles L.R.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Child Language | Year: 2011

Two-, three- and four-year-old English learners enacted sentences that were missing a direct object (e.g. *The zebra brings.). Previous work has indicated that preschoolers faced with such ungrammatical sentences consistently alter the usual meaning of the verb to fit the syntactic frame (enacting 'zebra comes'); older children are more likely to repair the syntax to fit the meaning of the verb (enacting 'zebra brings something'; Naigles, Gleitman & Gleitman, 1993). We investigated whether young children performed more repairs if an informative context preceded the ungrammatical sentences. Test sentences were preceded by short vignettes that created a relationship between three characters. Children repaired more sentences than had been found previously; however, older preschoolers also repaired significantly more frequently than younger preschoolers. Discourse context thus seems relevant to the acquisition of verb argument structure, but is not the sole source of information. © 2010 Cambridge University Press.

Mazerolle S.M.,University of Connecticut | Goodman A.,Appalachian State University
Journal of Athletic Training | Year: 2013

Context: Researchers studying work-life balance have examined policy development and implementation to create a family-friendly work environment from an individualistic perspective rather than from a cohort of employees working under the same supervisor. Objective: To investigate what factors influence work-life balance within the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I clinical setting from the perspective of an athletic training staff. Design: Qualitative study. Setting: Web-based management system. Patients or Other Participants: Eight athletic trainers (5 men, 3 women; age = 38 ± 7 years) in the NCAA Division I setting. Data Collection and Analysis: Participants responded to a series of questions by journaling their thoughts and experiences. We included data-source triangulation, multiple-analyst triangulation, and peer review to establish data credibility. We analyzed the data via a grounded theory approach. Results: Three themes emerged from the data. Familyoriented and supportive work environment was described as a workplace that fosters and encourages work-life balance through professionally and personally shared goals. Nonwork outlets included activities, such as exercise and personal hobbies, that provide time away from the role of the athletic trainer. Individualistic strategies reflected that although the athletic training staff must work together and support one another, each staff member must have his or her own personal strategies to manage personal and professional responsibilities. Conclusions: The foundation for a successful work environment in the NCAA Division I clinical setting potentially can center on the management style of the supervisor, especially one who promotes teamwork among his or her staff members. Although a family-friendly work environment is necessary for work-life balance, each member of the athletic training staff must have personal strategies in place to fully achieve a balance. © by the National Athletic Trainers' Association, Inc.

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: http://www.engr.uconn.edu/ywu. Contact: ywu@engr.uconn.edu. Supplementary information: Supplementary data is available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author(s) 2010. Published by Oxford University Press.

Abunasser J.,University of Connecticut
Connecticut medicine | Year: 2012

Pulmonary embolism (PE), most commonly originating from thrombosis in the deep venous system of the lower extremities, remains a controversial area of medicine that frequently generates lively debate. Its clinical presentation varies from asymptomatic, incidentally detected pulmonary emboli to massive embolism resulting in sudden death. Despite the advances made in recent years, a number of fundamental questions remain unanswered regarding the pathogenesis, clinical presentation, diagnosis and treatment of this disease. The diagnosis of PE is confounded by a presentation that may be subtle, atypical, or obscured by a concomitant condition. Safe, minimally invasive techniques have been developed to improve the diagnostic accuracy of the clinical evaluation, and obviate the need to obtain pulmonary arteriography in all but a minority of patients. However, no single diagnostic test is sufficiently sensitive or specific for diagnosis in all patients. This dilemma has resulted in the development of numerous clinical scoring systems to stratify risk, pretest probability and help guide an appropriate diagnostic approach. Anticoagulation therapy with unfractionated heparin (UFH), low molecular weight heparin (LMWH), and Factor Xa inhibitors are the mainstay of therapy for acute PE. The choice of agent is influenced by disease severity, presence or absence of provokingfactors, patient comorbidities, and bleeding risk. These factors also determine whether measures such as thrombectomy, thrombolysis and vena cava filter placement may be employed as adjuncts to anticoagulation. Warfarin is the agent of choice for secondary prevention; newer agents such as direct thrombin and factor Xa inhibitors are emerging as safe and effective alternatives.

Stiner M.C.,University of Arizona | Munro N.D.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Human Evolution | Year: 2011

Franchthi Cave in southern Greece preserves one of the most remarkable records of socioeconomic change of the Late Pleistocene through early Holocene. Located on the southern end of the Argolid Peninsula, the area around the site was greatly affected by climate variation and marine transgression. This study examines the complex interplay of site formation processes (material deposition rates), climate-driven landscape change, and human hunting systems during the Upper Paleolithic through Mesolithic at Franchthi Cave based on the H1B faunal series. Building on earlier work, we establish the full spectrum of the meat diet using taphonomic evidence, and we analyze these data for trends in socioeconomic reorganization. Foraging patterns during the Aurignacian and " Gravettoid" occupations at Franchthi were terrestrial and already rather diversified in comparison to Middle Paleolithic diets in southern Greece. Hunting shifted abruptly to a mixed marine-terrestrial pattern during the Final Paleolithic, and fishing activities intensified though the Mesolithic. The zooarchaeological data indicate two consecutive trends of increasing dietary breadth, the first within an exclusively terrestrial context, and the second as marine habitats came into use through the end of the Mesolithic. The intensity of the human occupations at this site increased in tandem with intensified use of animal and plants. Comparison to the inland site of Klissoura Cave 1 indicates that the trend toward broader diets was regional as well as local. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

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

Objective: Review the current literature assessing the role of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) on posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Data Sources: OVID MEDLINE search (1960-February 2014) using the terms MDMA, 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, Molly, and Ecstasy crossed with posttraumatic stress disorder with backwards citation tracking using references from procured articles. Study Selection and Data Extraction: English language studies assessing MDMA in patients with PTSD. Data Synthesis: Three randomized controlled trials (RCTs) were conducted along with follow-up open-label and extension evaluations. In the 3 RCTs, therapy with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy is promising, with reductions in PTSD rating scale scores (Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale, Severity of Symptoms Scale for PTSD Scale), although 2 of 3 trials did not show significant results, and all three had methodological limitations. The direction of effect for all trials was toward benefit in patients who were refractory to other PTSD therapies; the percentage reductions on rating scores ranged from 23% to 68%; and in 1 trial, the effect was sustained over a long period of time. MDMA ingestion without sustained psychotherapy over a 6-to 8-hour period is unlikely to be beneficial; trying to prolong the duration of effect with supplemental dosing is unlikely to provide additional benefits; and there are adverse effects on blood pressure and heart rate that should be appreciated. These studies used unadulterated MDMA with known and reproducible potency, which may not happen with street purchase of the product. Conclusions: MDMA-assisted psychotherapy may be an effective therapy in refractory PTSD but needs further evaluation to determine its place in contemporary therapy. © The Author(s) 2014.

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.

Buck R.W.,University of Connecticut
Behavioral and Brain Sciences | Year: 2012

Primary affects exist at an ecological-communicative level of analysis, and therefore are not identifiable with specific brain regions. The constructionist view favored in the target article, that emotions emerge from more basic psychological processes does not specify the nature of these processes. These more basic processes may actually involve specific neurochemical systems, that is, primary motivational-emotional systems (primes), associated with specific feelings and desires that combine to form the cocktail of experienced emotion. © 2012 Cambridge University Press.

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 http://www.engr.uconn.edu/~jiz08001/. 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.

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.

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.

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.

Kirby E.,Pennsylvania State University | Ouimet W.,University of Connecticut
Geological Society Special Publication | Year: 2011

We present a review and synthesis of the tectonic geomorphology along the eastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau adjacent to and north of the Sichuan Basin. Re-evaluation of spatial variations in the form of fluvial longitudinal profiles provides a refined image of the distribution of anomalously steep channels. Three new analyses demonstrate that these variations in channel steepness reflect variations in the locus and rate of differential rock uplift. First, measurements of channel width along trunk streams reveal systematic co-variations in channel hydraulic geometry and slope that suggests channels are dynamically adjusted to spatial variations in erosion rate. Second, recent determinations of the functional relationship between channel steepness indices and erosion rate allow a quantitative estimation of erosion rate from channel profile form. Third, comparison of rock uplift patterns to variations in the distribution of slip associated with the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake confirms that channel gradients reflect differential rock uplift. Our analysis suggests that reactivated fault systems adjacent to the Sichuan Basin are primarily responsible for accommodating differential rock uplift, but that rock uplift northward along the margin is not associated with active faults and is likely sustained by flow and thickening in the deep crust. © The Geological Society of London 2011.

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.

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.

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.

Vinogradova O.,University of Connecticut | Qin J.,Cleveland Clinic
Topics in Current Chemistry | Year: 2012

Protein-protein interactions are crucial for a wide variety of biological processes. These interactions range from high affinity (K dmM). While much is known about the nature of high affinity protein complexes, our knowledge about structural characteristics of weak protein-protein interactions (wPPIs) remains limited: in addition to the technical difficulties associated with their investigation, historically wPPIs used to be considered physiologically irrelevant. However, emerging evidence suggests that wPPIs, either in the form of intact protein complexes or as part of large molecular machineries, are fundamentally important for promoting rapid on/off switches of signal transduction, reversible cell-cell contacts, transient assembly/disassembly of signaling complexes, and enzyme-substrate recognition. Therefore an atomic-level elucidation of wPPIs is vital to understanding a cornucopia of diverse cellular events. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) is famous for its unique abilities to study wPPIs and, by utilization of the new technical developments combined with sparse data based computational analysis, it now allows rapid identification and structural characterization of wPPIs. Here we present our perspective on the NMR methods employed. © 2011 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Niemeyer K.E.,Oregon State University | Sung C.-J.,University of Connecticut
Combustion and Flame | Year: 2014

Strategies and recommendations for performing skeletal reductions of multicomponent surrogate fuels are presented, through the generation and validation of skeletal mechanisms for a three-component toluene reference fuel. Using the directed relation graph with error propagation and sensitivity analysis method followed by a further unimportant reaction elimination stage, skeletal mechanisms valid over comprehensive and high-temperature ranges of conditions were developed at varying levels of detail. These skeletal mechanisms were generated based on autoignition simulations, and validation using ignition delay predictions showed good agreement with the detailed mechanism in the target range of conditions. When validated using phenomena other than autoignition, such as perfectly stirred reactor and laminar flame propagation, tight error control or more restrictions on the reduction during the sensitivity analysis stage were needed to ensure good agreement. In addition, tight error limits were needed for close prediction of ignition delay when varying the mixture composition away from that used for the reduction. In homogeneous compression-ignition engine simulations, the skeletal mechanisms closely matched the point of ignition and accurately predicted species profiles for lean to stoichiometric conditions. Furthermore, the efficacy of generating a multicomponent skeletal mechanism was compared to combining skeletal mechanisms produced separately for neat fuel components; using the same error limits, the latter resulted in a larger skeletal mechanism size that also lacked important cross reactions between fuel components. Based on the present results, general guidelines for reducing detailed mechanisms for multicomponent fuels are discussed. © 2014 The Combustion Institute.

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.

Watanabe E.,University of Electro - Communications | Hoshiba T.,Yamagata University | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Optics Letters | Year: 2013

Experiments for cell identification are presented using a high-precision cell phase measurement system that does not require any phase unwrapping. This system is based on a Mach-Zehnder interferometer using a phase-locking technique, and it measures the change in optical path length while the sample is scanned across the optical axis. The spatial resolution is estimated to be less than 1.1 μm. The sensitivity of optical path length difference is estimated to be less than 2 nm. Using experiments, we investigate the potential of this approach for cancer cell identification. In our preliminary experiments, cancer cells were distinguished from normal cells through comparison of optical path length differences. © 2013 Optical Society of America.

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.

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.

Frank T.D.,University of Connecticut
Ecological Psychology | Year: 2012

We argue that multistable physical pattern formation systems of the inanimate world, such as fluids and gases producing convection rolls, are promising candidate systems for physical intelligence. The reason for this is that the principles that govern intelligent behavior of humans and animals and have been used to construct certain numerical algorithms in the field of artificial intelligence are quite similar to the principles that underlie pattern formation in physical systems. In order to support this claim we demonstrate that the emergence of convection rolls in fluid and gas layers, human "intelligent" behavior as revealed in grasping transitions, and certain pattern recognition processes of "intelligent" engineered algorithms satisfy the same underlying self-organization principles when expressing them mathematically in terms of amplitude equations. The implications are at least two-fold. First, we support the hypothesis of the existence of smart physical systems. Second, we demonstrate the possibility indicated previously by Haken (1991) to map smart engineered algorithms to physical systems such that physical systems possess the ability to solve problems in the field of artificial intelligence. © 2012 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

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.

Brenick A.,University of Connecticut | Killen M.,University of Maryland College Park
Developmental Psychology | Year: 2014

Prejudice and discrimination as justifications for social exclusion are often viewed as violations of the moral principles of welfare, justice, and equality, but intergroup exclusion can also often be viewed as a necessary and legitimate means to maintain group identity and cohesion (Rutland, Killen, & Abrams, 2010). The current study was guided by the social reasoning developmental perspective (Killen & Rutland, 2011) to examine the moral judgments of social exclusion encounters, and the degree to which cultural identity and actual contact with members of other cultural groups is related to social evaluations. Surprisingly, no research has examined how intergroup contact bears on moral judgments about Jewish-Arab encounters in the United States. The current study surveyed 241 Jewish and 249 non-Arab/non-Jewish (comparison group) 14-and 17-year-olds to assess their cultural identification, intergroup contact, and moral judgments regarding intergroup peer social exclusion situations between Jewish and Arab youth in peer, home, and community contexts. Participants overwhelmingly rejected exclusion of an outgroup member explicitly because of their group membership. Context effects emerged, and exclusion was rated as most acceptable in the community context and least acceptable in the peer context. Three factors of identity (i.e., exploration, commitment, and concern for relationships) were explored. Generally, higher identity commitment and lower identity concern for relationships were related to more inclusive evaluations. Interactions between the identity factors and intergroup contact and cultural group, however, differentially predicted evaluations of intergroup exclusion. © 2013 American Psychological Association.

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.

Rivenson Y.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev | Stern A.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Applied Optics | Year: 2013

In recent years compressive sensing (CS) has been successfully introduced in digital holography (DH). Depending on the ability to sparsely represent an object, the CS paradigm provides an accurate object reconstruction framework from a relatively small number of encoded signal samples. DH has proven to be an efficient and physically realizable sensing modality that can exploit the benefits of CS. In this paper, we provide an overview of the theoretical guidelines for application of CS in DH and demonstrate the benefits of compressive digital holographic sensing. © 2012 Optical Society of America.

Ostrach B.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health | Year: 2013

Half of pregnancies worldwide are unintended; half of these end in abortion. Immigrant women encounter more obstacles to reproductive healthcare than non-immigrant women, and access to national healthcare is a particularly important factor in abortion access. Spain's government recently liberalized abortion laws, including abortion services in the national health system available to immigrants. Evidence suggests that immigrant women in Spain experience difficulties navigating the health system - the impact of the changed abortion laws on immigrant's women's access to care is not yet clear. Through a literature review and analysis, this paper examines the experiences of immigrant women with national health systems, and their use of such systems for reproductive and abortion care, in order to explore what could be expected in Spain as the national health system expands to include abortion care, and to illuminate immigrant women's experiences with using national health systems for reproductive healthcare more broadly. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

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.

Cornils A.,Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research | Blanco-Bercial L.,University of Connecticut
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution | Year: 2013

The Paracalanidae are ecologically-important marine planktonic copepods that occur in the epipelagic zone in temperate and tropical waters. They are often the dominant taxon - in terms of biomass and abundance - in continental shelf regions. As primary consumers, they form a vital link in the pelagic food web between primary producers and higher trophic levels. Despite the ecological importance of the taxon, evolutionary and systematic relationships within the family remain largely unknown. A multigene phylogeny including 24 species, including representatives for all seven genera, was determined based on two nuclear genes, small-subunit (18S) ribosomal RNA and Histone 3 (H3) and one mitochondrial gene, cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI). The molecular phylogeny was well supported by Maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference analysis; all genera were found to be monophyletic, except for Paracalanus, which was separated into two distinct clades: the Paracalanus aculeatus group and Paracalanus parvus group. The molecular phylogeny also confirmed previous findings that Mecynocera and Calocalanus are genera of the family Paracalanidae. For comparison, a morphological phylogeny was created for 35 paracalanid species based on 54 morphological characters derived from published descriptions. The morphological phylogeny did not resolve all genera as monophyletic and bootstrap support was not strong. Molecular and morphological phylogenies were not congruent in the positioning of Bestiolina and the Paracalanus species groups, possibly due to the lack of sufficient phylogenetically-informative morphological characters. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

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.

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.

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.

Hassanfiroozi A.,National Chiao Tung University | Huang Y.-P.,National Chiao Tung University | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut | Shieh H.-P.D.,National Chiao Tung University
Optics Express | Year: 2015

A liquid crystal lens array with a hexagonal arrangement is investigated experimentally. The uniqueness of this study exists in the fact that using convex-ring electrode provides a smooth and controllable applied potential profile across the aperture to manage the phase profile. We observed considerable differences between flat electrode and convex-ring electrode; in particular the lens focal length is variable in a wider range from 2.5cm to infinity. This study presents several noteworthy characteristics such as low driving voltage; 30 μm cell gap and the lens is electrically switchable between 2D/3D modes. We demonstrate a hexagonal LC-lens array for capturing 3D images by using single sensor using integral imaging. © 2015 Optical Society of America.

Anand A.,M. S. University of Baroda | Javidi B.,University of Connecticut
Optics Letters | Year: 2010

Generally, 3D digital holographic microscopy requires the interference of the object wave with a known reference beam under coherent illumination to perform numerical focusing. This configuration may be challenging for some applications, including the use of exotic wavelengths such as x rays, miniaturized instrumentation, etc. Single-beam intensity measurement followed by phase retrieval techniques is attractive for wavefront sensing and reconstruction, including applications with low coherence. We use this method to construct a 3D microscope using volume speckle fields. Transparent phase objects are investigated using this principle. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on the application of this principle applied to microscopy. © 2010 Optical Society of America.

White W.B.,University of Connecticut | Cannon C.P.,Harvard University | Heller S.R.,University of Sheffield | Nissen S.E.,Cleveland Clinic | And 9 more authors.
New England Journal of Medicine | Year: 2013

BACKGROUND: To assess potentially elevated cardiovascular risk related to new antihyperglycemic drugs in patients with type 2 diabetes, regulatory agencies require a comprehensive evaluation of the cardiovascular safety profile of new antidiabetic therapies. We assessed cardiovascular outcomes with alogliptin, a new inhibitor of dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP-4), as compared with placebo in patients with type 2 diabetes who had had a recent acute coronary syndrome. METHODS: We randomly assigned patients with type 2 diabetes and either an acute myocardial infarction or unstable angina requiring hospitalization within the previous 15 to 90 days to receive alogliptin or placebo in addition to existing antihyperglycemic and cardiovascular drug therapy. The study design was a double-blind, noninferiority trial with a prespecified noninferiority margin of 1.3 for the hazard ratio for the primary end point of a composite of death from cardiovascular causes, nonfatal myocardial infarction, or nonfatal stroke. RESULTS: A total of 5380 patients underwent randomization and were followed for up to 40 months (median, 18 months). A primary end-point event occurred in 305 patients assigned to alogliptin (11.3%) and in 316 patients assigned to placebo (11.8%) (hazard ratio, 0.96; upper boundary of the one-sided repeated confidence interval, 1.16; P<0.001 for noninferiority). Glycated hemoglobin levels were significantly lower with alogliptin than with placebo (mean difference, -0.36 percentage points; P<0.001). Incidences of hypoglycemia, cancer, pancreatitis, and initiation of dialysis were similar with alogliptin and placebo. CONCLUSIONS: Among patients with type 2 diabetes who had had a recent acute coronary syndrome, the rates of major adverse cardiovascular events were not increased with the DPP-4 inhibitor alogliptin as compared with placebo. Copyright © 2013 Massachusetts Medical Society.

Majumder S.,University of Connecticut | Birk J.,University of Connecticut Health Center
Surgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques | Year: 2013

Gastroenterologists are expected to play a pivotal role in the management of the global obesity epidemic in coming years as novel endoscopic approaches become more widely available, safe, and effective. This review focuses on the recent advances in the field of endoluminal therapy as a primary approach to obesity management with the aim of providing the interventional endoscopist an overview of currently available evidence along with an insight into upcoming devices and techniques. The intragastric balloon appears to be safe and effective in the short term, especially as a bridge to bariatric surgery. Although early trials support the safety and feasibility of endoscopic gastroplasty, it is technically demanding and staple-line dehiscence continues to be a problem. Moreover, with ongoing technical innovations, most devices that have been used in published trials are no longer manufactured and results of studies using newer endoscopic suturing systems are currently awaited. The duodenojejunal bypass sleeve mimics the physiology of intestinal bypass and shares the metabolic advantages of intestinal diversion. A high rate of premature device withdrawal has been its major limiting factor. Therapeutic endoscopy may be the next paradigm of bariatric care. Combining restrictive and barrier endoscopic techniques can potentially improve efficacy and should be evaluated in the setting of appropriate clinical trials. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

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.

Gai M.,University of Connecticut | Gai M.,Yale University
Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics | Year: 2013

The rate of oxygen formation determines the C/O ratio during stellar helium burning. It is the single most important nuclear input in stellar evolution theory, including the evolution of type II and type Ia supernova. However, the low-energy cross section of the fusion of 4He +12C, denoted as the 12C (α,γ)16O reaction, still remains uncertain. I analyze and critically review the most recent measurements of complete angular distributions of the outgoing γ rays at very low energies (Ec.m.≥1.0 MeV). My analysis of the angular distributions measured with the EUROGAM/GANDI arrays leads to considerably larger error bars than have been published, which excludes them from the current sample of "world data." I show that the current sample of "world data" of the measured E2 cross-section factors below 1.7 MeV cluster into two distinct groups that lead to two distinct extrapolations: SE2(300) ≈60 or SE2(300)≈154 keVb. There is a discrepancy between the measured E1-E2 phase difference (12) and unitarity as required by the Watson theorem, which suggests systematic problem(s) in some of the measured γ-ray angular distributions. The ambiguity of the extrapolated S E2(300) together with the previously observed ambiguity of S E1(300) (approximately 80 or 10 keVb) must be resolved by future measurements of complete and detailed angular distributions of the 12C(α,γ) reaction at very low energies (Ec.m.≤1.0 MeV). © 2013 American Physical Society.

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.

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.

Cooke T.J.,University of Connecticut
Professional Geographer | Year: 2013

Internal migration rates in the United States have been steadily declining for at least twenty-five years: In 1984, 6.4 percent of the population moved between counties but by 2006-well before the most significant economic crisis since the Great Depression-annual intercounty migration rates had already declined to 4.7 percent and by 2010 to 3.5 percent. Despite the implications of the migration decline, it is poorly recognized and understood. The analysis shows that over the last thirty years, three broad trends have combined to pull migration rates dramatically lower: an increase in dual-worker couples, increased household indebtedness, and the widespread rise of information and communication technologies (ICTs).The first two are probably linked, as households have responded to decreasing real income over the last quarter-century through greater female labor force participation and maintaining current levels of consumption by borrowing ever more heavily from the equity in their homes. Thus, although this analysis shows that the decline in migration rates is not directly linked to the Great Recession, the migration decline is surely linked to the broader macroeconomic shifts that gave rise to it. With respect to the role of ICTs, it is not surprising that as ICTs have transformed nearly everything else across society, their use has affected migration rates. It is presumed that ICTs are providing new forms of mobility that are substituting for migration. © Copyright 2013 by Association of American Geographers.

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.

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.

Marsh K.L.,University of Connecticut
Ecological Psychology | Year: 2015

The purpose of this article is to provide some groundwork about ecological social psychology as a starting point for researchers tackling neglected issues of language ecologically. I review basic principles of the ecological approach to perceiving and acting and discuss how the ecological approach has been applied beyond solo actors in an ecological niche to multiple actors acting in a niche explicitly conceptualized as social. In the last decade, researchers were inspired by tool-use research and solo action-based research on affordances (e.g., stair climbing) to take an affordance-based approach to understanding cooperation in a more embodied approach than was previously used in social psychology. Beginning at least a decade prior to that, researchers were inspired to wonder whether the dynamics of the coordinative structures of a solo actor's body movements, spontaneously emerging when different limbs engaged in rhythmic movement, might cross the bodily divide to yield similar collective dynamics when multiple actors are incidentally engaged in rhythmic movement (e.g., different people swinging their legs together). One insight from the affordance research emphasizes the role of meaning as emerging in dynamic interaction between multiple actors confronted by demands and resources of an environment: language's potential contribution to this is discussed in the context of the newest advances in theorizing about values and about the sociocultural grounding of affordances. Finally, the potential role of language for facilitating being pulled into “social eddies” of coordinated orbits of motion, as well as its potential role in joint action, is discussed. © 2015, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

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.

Gulbinska M.K.,Yardney Technical Products, Inc. | Suib S.L.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Power Sources | Year: 2011

In this study, vanadium ions were substituted for manganese in the crystal lattice of synthetic cryptomelane, also denoted as OMS-2, via microwave field-assisted syntheses. Doping vanadium into the framework of mixed valence manganese oxide resulted in OMS-2 materials with modified composition, morphology, and electrical properties. Structural properties and morphology of synthesized materials were characterized by XRD and FESEM, respectively. Average oxidation state and resistivity measurements were also taken. The effect of framework doping of vanadium ions on lithium-ion intercalation properties of manganese oxides was investigated in Li-ion cathode half-cells. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

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.

Schmittner A.,Oregon State University | Lund D.C.,University of Connecticut
Climate of the Past | Year: 2015

The reason for the initial rise in atmospheric CO2 during the last deglaciation remains unknown. Most recent hypotheses invoke Southern Hemisphere processes such as shifts in midlatitude westerly winds. Coeval changes in the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC) are poorly quantified, and their relation to the CO2 increase is not understood. Here we compare simulations from a global, coupled climate-biogeochemistry model that includes a detailed representation of stable carbon isotopes (δ13C) with a synthesis of high-resolution δ13C reconstructions from deep-sea sediments and ice core data. In response to a prolonged AMOC shutdown initialized from a preindustrial state, modeled δ13C of dissolved inorganic carbon (δ13CDIC) decreases in most of the surface ocean and the subsurface Atlantic, with largest amplitudes (more than 1.5%‰) in the intermediate-depth North Atlantic. It increases in the intermediate and abyssal South Atlantic, as well as in the subsurface Southern, Indian, and Pacific oceans. The modeled pattern is similar and highly correlated with the available foraminiferal δ13C reconstructions spanning from the late Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, ~19.5-18.5 ka BP) to the late Heinrich stadial event 1 (HS1, ~16.5-15.5 ka BP), but the model overestimates δ13CDIC reductions in the North Atlantic. Possible reasons for the model-sediment-data differences are discussed. Changes in remineralized δ13CDIC dominate the total δ13CDIC variations in the model but preformed contributions are not negligible. Simulated changes in atmospheric CO2 and its isotopic composition (δ13CCO2) agree well with ice core data. Modeled effects of AMOC-induced wind changes on the carbon and isotope cycles are small, suggesting that Southern Hemisphere westerly wind effects may have been less important for the global carbon cycle response during HS1 than previously thought. Our results indicate that during the early deglaciation the AMOC decreased for several thousand years. We propose that the observed early deglacial rise in atmospheric CO2 and the decrease in δ13CCO2 may have been dominated by an AMOC-induced decline of the ocean's biologically sequestered carbon storage. © Author(s) 2015.

Hsu C.-Y.,National Chung Hsing University | Nieh M.-P.,University of Connecticut | Lai P.-S.,National Chung Hsing University
Chemical Communications | Year: 2012

A robust and uniform porphysome, which reveals an efficient photodynamic therapy and contrast-enhanced ultrasonic imaging for theranostic applications, can be fabricated from a 4-armed porphyrin-polylactide conjugate. © 2012 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

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.

Ghosh D.,University of Connecticut | Guha R.,U.S. National Institutes of Health
Cartography and Geographic Information Science | Year: 2013

Public health related tweets are difficult to identify in large conversational datasets like Twitter.com. Even more challenging is the visualization and analyses of the spatial patterns encoded in tweets. This study has the following objectives: how can topic modeling be used to identify relevant public health topics such as obesity on Twitter.com? What are the common obesity related themes? What is the spatial pattern of the themes? What are the research challenges of using large conversational datasets from social networking sites? Obesity is chosen as a test theme to demonstrate the effectiveness of topic modeling using Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) and spatial analysis using Geographic Information System (GIS). The dataset is constructed from tweets (originating from the United States) extracted from Twitter.com on obesityrelated queries. Examples of such queries are 'food deserts', 'fast food', and 'childhood obesity'. The tweets are also georeferenced and time stamped. Three cohesive and meaningful themes such as 'childhood obesity and schools', 'obesity prevention', and 'obesity and food habits' are extracted from the LDA model. The GIS analysis of the extracted themes show distinct spatial pattern between rural and urban areas, northern and southern states, and between coasts and inland states. Further, relating the themes with ancillary datasets such as US census and locations of fast food restaurants based upon the location of the tweets in a GIS environment opened new avenues for spatial analyses and mapping. Therefore the techniques used in this study provide a possible toolset for computational social scientists in general, and health researchers in specific, to better understand health problems from large conversational datasets. © 2013 Cartography and Geographic Information Society.

Njei B.,Yale University | Njei B.,University of Connecticut | Rotman Y.,U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases | Ditah I.,Mayo Medical School | Lim J.K.,Yale University
Hepatology | Year: 2015

The rise in incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in the United States has been well documented. The purpose of this analysis was to examine temporal trends in HCC incidence, mortality, and survival within the U.S. population. The Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results data were used to examine incidence and incidence-based (IB) mortality in HCC from 1973 to 2011. Secular trends in age-adjusted incidence and IB mortality by sex and cancer stage were characterized using the Joinpoint Regression program. In 1973, HCC incidence was 1.51 cases per 100,000, whereas in 2011, HCC incidence was 6.20 cases per 100,000. Although HCC incidence continues to increase, a slowing of the rate of increase occurs around 2006. In a sensitivity analysis, there was no significant increase in incidence and IB mortality from 2009 to 2011. There was a significant increase in overall median survival from the 1970s to 2000s (2 vs. 8 months; P<0.001). On multivariable Cox's regression analysis, age, sex, race, tumor grade, stage at diagnosis, lymph/vascular invasion, number of primary tumors, tumor size, and liver transplant were independently associated with mortality. Conclusion: Our results indicate a deceleration in the incidence of HCC around 2006. Since 2009 and for the first time in four decades, there is no increase in IB mortality and incidence rates for HCC in the U.S. population. The nonsignificant increase in incidence and IB mortality in recent years suggest that the peak of the HCC epidemic may be near. A significant survival improvement in HCC was also noted from 1973 to 2010, which seems to be driven by earlier detection of HCC at a curative stage and greater utilization of curative modalities (especially transplant). © 2014 by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.

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.

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.

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.

Basar G.,University of Maryland University College | Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2015

The second order hydrodynamical description of a homogeneous conformal plasma that undergoes a boost-invariant expansion is given by a single nonlinear ordinary differential equation, whose resurgent asymptotic properties we study, developing further the recent work of Heller and Spalinski [Phys. Rev. Lett. 115, 072501 (2015)]. Resurgence clearly identifies the nonhydrodynamic modes that are exponentially suppressed at late times, analogous to the quasinormal modes in gravitational language, organizing these modes in terms of a trans-series expansion. These modes are analogs of instantons in semiclassical expansions, where the damping rate plays the role of the instanton action. We show that this system displays the generic features of resurgence, with explicit quantitative relations between the fluctuations about different orders of these nonhydrodynamic modes. The imaginary part of the trans-series parameter is identified with the Stokes constant, and the real part with the freedom associated with initial conditions. © 2015 American Physical Society.

Kovner A.,University of Connecticut | Rezaeian A.H.,Federico Santa Maria Technical University
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2015

We obtain prompt diphoton cross section in proton-nucleus collisions in Hamiltonian light-cone approach within a hybrid approximation, treating the projectile proton in the parton model and the target nucleus in the color-glass-condensate approach. We study in detail the diphoton correlations in quark-nucleus and proton-nucleus collisions at RHIC and the LHC. We show that the single fragmentation diphoton produces the away-side correlations peak, and the double-fragmentation component of prompt diphoton is responsible for the near-side peak, and the long-range in rapidity near-side azimuthal collimation, the so-called "ridge" structure. We study the transverse momentum, density and energy dependence of the diphoton ridge and show that it strongly depends on the kinematics and saturation dynamics. We show that while diphoton ridge exists at the LHC in quark-nucleus collisions, the effect disappears in proton-nucleus collisions at the LHC. At RHIC the ridge-type structure persists at low transverse momenta of diphoton even in proton-nucleus collisions. We argue that diphoton correlation measurements in p+A collisions can help to discriminate among models and understand the true origin of the observed dihadron ridge in p+A collisions. We also show that in addition to the ridge structure, prompt diphoton correlation also exhibits some distinct novel features, including the emergence of away-side double-peak structure at intermediate transverse momenta. © 2015 American Physical Society.

Galletly C.L.,Medical College of Wisconsin | Lazzarini Z.,University of Connecticut
AIDS and Behavior | Year: 2013

This paper examines comprehensive data on arrests for HIV-specific crimes within a single jurisdiction, the Nashville Tennessee prosecutorial region, over 11 years. There were 25 arrests for HIV exposure and 27 for aggravated prostitution. Eleven of the arrests for HIV exposure involved nonsexual behaviors; none alleged transmission. Sixteen of the arrests for HIV exposure involved sexual behavior; three alleged transmission. Aggravated prostitution cases (i.e. prostitution while knowing one has HIV) often involved solicitation of oral sex; none alleged transmission. Maximum sentences for HIV-specific crimes ranged from 5 to 8 years. We conclude that enforcement of US HIV-specific laws is underestimated. Fifty-two arrests over 11 years were recorded in one jurisdiction. Over half of the arrests involved behaviors posing minimal or no HIV transmission risk. Despite concerns about malicious, intentional HIV transmission, no cases alleged malice or intention. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

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.

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.

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.

Klueh U.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology | Year: 2013

It is generally accepted that unreliable in vivo performance of implantable glucose sensors originates, in large part, from tissue reactions to the implanted sensor, including foreign body reactions (i.e., inflammation, fibrosis, and vessel regression). Development of glucose sensor coatings with increased biocompatibility would contribute to the development of a reliable long-term glucose sensor. In this issue of Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology, Van den Bosch and coauthors report on their initial in vitro results on a candidate biocompatibility coating for sensors (silica nanoparticle- polyethylene-glycol-based coating). Although the initial standard testing is encouraging, it is important that sensor-specific testing protocol be utilized to more accurately predict sensor performance in vivo. The development and application of sensor-specific testing standards will likely speed the development of biocompatible coatings that will increase sensor accuracy and lifespan in the future. © Diabetes Technology Society.

Menge D.N.L.,Columbia University | Chazdon R.L.,University of Connecticut
New Phytologist | Year: 2016

Trees capable of symbiotic nitrogen (N) fixation ('N fixers') are abundant in many tropical forests. In temperate forests, it is well known that N fixers specialize in early-successional niches, but in tropical forests, successional trends of N-fixing species are poorly understood. We used a long-term census study (1997-2013) of regenerating lowland wet tropical forests in Costa Rica to document successional patterns of N fixers vs non-fixers, and used an individual-based model to determine the demographic drivers of these trends. N fixers increased in relative basal area during succession. In the youngest forests, N fixers grew 2.5 times faster, recruited at a similar rate and were 15 times less likely to die as non-fixers. As succession proceeded, the growth and survival disparities decreased, whereas N fixer recruitment decreased relative to non-fixers. According to our individual-based model, high survival was the dominant driver of the increase in basal area of N fixers. Our data suggest that N fixers are successful throughout secondary succession in tropical rainforests of north-east Costa Rica, and that attempts to understand this success should focus on tree survival. © 2016 New Phytologist Trust.

Mai M.,Yale University | Schweitzer P.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2012

We study the energy-momentum tensor of stable, metastable and unstable Q-balls in scalar field theories with U(1) symmetry. We calculate properties such as charge, mass, mean square radii and the constant d 1 ("D-term") as functions of the phase space angular velocity ω. We discuss the limits when ω approaches the boundaries of the region in which solutions exist, and derive analytical results for the quantities in these limits. The central result of this work is the rigorous proof that d 1 is strictly negative for all finite energy solutions in the Q-ball system. © 2012 American Physical Society.

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.

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.

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.

Chen C.-N.,National Changhua University of Education | Choi Y.S.,University of Connecticut
Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis | Year: 2012

Reaction-diffusion systems serve as relevant models for studying complex patterns in several fields of nonlinear sciences. A localized pattern is a stable non-constant stationary solution usually located far away from neighborhoods of bifurcation induced by Turing's instability. In the study of FitzHugh-Nagumo equations, we look for a standing pulse with a profile staying close to a trivial background state except in one localized spatial region where the change is substantial. This amounts to seeking a homoclinic orbit for a corresponding Hamiltonian system, and we utilize a variational formulation which involves a nonlocal term. Such a functional is referred to as Helmholtz free energy in modeling microphase separation in diblock copolymers, while its global minimizer does not exist in our setting of dealing with standing pulse. The homoclinic orbit obtained here is a local minimizer extracted from a suitable topological class of admissible functions. In contrast with the known results for positive standing pulses found in the literature, a new technique is attempted by seeking a standing pulse solution with a sign change. © 2012 Springer-Verlag.

Wiemer D.F.,University of Iowa | Wiemer A.J.,University of Connecticut
Biochemical Pharmacology | Year: 2014

In contrast to T cells that express the more prevalent αβ T cell receptor and respond to peptide antigens, T cells that express the Vγ9Vδ2 T cell receptor detect and respond to non-peptide phosphorous-containing small molecules known as phosphoantigens. Because γδ T cells are early responders to infections and malignancies, it has been suggested that stimulation of their activity with small molecule phosphoantigen drugs may hold promise for therapeutic interventions. Recent studies have greatly advanced our knowledge of phosphoantigens as well as their cellular receptors. At the same time, clinical trials of phosphoantigens have suggested that development of these Vγ9Vδ2 T cell agonists has met unexpected challenges. In this commentary, we summarize the biology that underlies phosphoantigen activity and discuss the structural features of synthetic phosphoantigens that affect both their ability to stimulate Vγ9Vδ2 T cells and their potential as therapeutic agents. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

Pfennig D.W.,University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill | Wund M.A.,The College of New Jersey | Snell-Rood E.C.,Indiana University Bloomington | Cruickshank T.,Indiana University Bloomington | And 2 more authors.
Trends in Ecology and Evolution | Year: 2010

Phenotypic plasticity (the ability of a single genotype to produce multiple phenotypes in response to variation in the environment) is commonplace. Yet its evolutionary significance remains controversial, especially in regard to whether and how it impacts diversification and speciation. Here, we review recent theory on how plasticity promotes: (i) the origin of novel phenotypes, (ii) divergence among populations and species, (iii) the formation of new species and (iv) adaptive radiation. We also discuss the latest empirical support for each of these evolutionary pathways to diversification and identify potentially profitable areas for future research. Generally, phenotypic plasticity can play a largely underappreciated role in driving diversification and speciation. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

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).

Al-Okaily A.A.,University of Connecticut
BMC Genomics | Year: 2016

Background: Current high-throughput sequencing technologies generate large numbers of relatively short and error-prone reads, making the de novo assembly problem challenging. Although high quality assemblies can be obtained by assembling multiple paired-end libraries with both short and long insert sizes, the latter are costly to generate. Recently, GAGE-B study showed that a remarkably good assembly quality can be obtained for bacterial genomes by state-of-the-art assemblers run on a single short-insert library with very high coverage. Results: In this paper, we introduce a novel hierarchical genome assembly (HGA) methodology that takes further advantage of such very high coverage by independently assembling disjoint subsets of reads, combining assemblies of the subsets, and finally re-assembling the combined contigs along with the original reads. Conclusions: We empirically evaluated this methodology for 8 leading assemblers using 7 GAGE-B bacterial datasets consisting of 100 bp Illumina HiSeq and 250 bp Illumina MiSeq reads, with coverage ranging from 100x- ~ 200x. The results show that for all evaluated datasets and using most evaluated assemblers (that were used to assemble the disjoint subsets), HGA leads to a significant improvement in the quality of the assembly based on N50 and corrected N50 metrics. © 2016 Al-okaily.

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.

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.

Lee Y.J.,University of Connecticut
Annales de la Societe Entomologique de France | Year: 2014

This paper provides the first faunal checklist for the family Cicadidae (Insecta: Hemiptera) in Laos, comprising 60 species belonging to 33 genera. Aetanna pallidula n. sp. and Aetanna curta n. sp. are described as new to science. Cabecita draluobi (Boulard 2003) n. comb. and Hea yunnanensis Chou & Yao 1995 are added to the cicada fauna of Laos. Megapomponia imperatoria (Westwood 1842), which was recorded erroneously, is removed from the fauna. Unipomponia n. gen., Paranosia n. gen., Aetanna n. gen., and Cabecita n. gen. are erected. Nipponosemia Kato 1925 is synonymized with Vagitanus Distant 1918. Transfers of many species from one genus to another are made. Trengganua Moulton 1923 is transferred to Gaeanini Distant 1905 from Tosenini Amyot & Audinet-Serville 1843. Talainga Distant 1890 and Paratalainga He 1984 are transferred to Gaeanini from Talaingini Myers 1929, synonymizing Talaingini n. syn. with Gaeanini. Chloropsalta Haupt 1920 is transferred to Cicadatrini Distant 1905 from Gaeanini. Bijaurana Distant 1912 is placed in Cicadatrini. © 2014 Société entomologique de France.

Boyd N.,Parkland Health and Hospital System | Nailor M.D.,University of Connecticut
Pharmacotherapy | Year: 2011

The widespread emergence of antibiotic-resistant gram-negative organisms has compromised the utility of current treatment options for severe infections caused by these pathogens. The rate of gram-negative multidrug resistance is worsening, threatening the effectiveness of newer broad-spectrum antibiotic agents. Infections associated with multidrug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Acinetobacter baumannii, and Enterobacteriaceae are having a substantial impact on hospital costs and mortality rates. The potential for these resistant gram-negative nosocomial pathogens must always be a primary consideration when selecting antibiotic therapy for critically ill patients. Empiric combination therapy directed at gram-negative pathogens is a logical approach for patients with suspected health care-associated infections, particularly those with risk factors for infections caused by multidrug-resistant pathogens. Although in vitro synergy tests have shown potential benefits of continued combination therapy, convincing clinical data that demonstrate a need for combination therapy once susceptibilities are known are lacking. Thus, deescalation to a single agent once susceptibilities are known is recommended for most patients and pathogens. Use of polymyxins, often in combination with other antimicrobials, may be necessary for salvage therapy.

Mai M.,Yale University | Schweitzer P.,University of Connecticut
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2012

We study the structure of the energy-momentum tensor of radial excitations of Q-balls in scalar field theories with U(1) symmetry. The obtained numerical results for the 1≤N≤23 excitations allow us to study in detail patterns how the solutions behave with N. We show that although the fields (r) and energy-momentum tensor densities exhibit a remarkable degree of complexity, the properties of the solutions scale with N with great regularity. This is to the best of our knowledge the first study of the D-term d 1 for excited states, and we demonstrate that it is negative-in agreement with results from literature on the d 1 of ground state particles. © 2012 American Physical Society.

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.

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.

Pask A.,University of Connecticut
Methods in Molecular Biology | Year: 2012

Genomic imprinting is an epigenetic phenomenon that results in the silencing of alleles, dependent on their parent of origin. Within vertebrates, this phenomenon is restricted only to the mammals and has been identified in eutherians and marsupials but not in the egg-laying monotremes. Many hypotheses have been put forward to explain why genomic imprinting evolved, most of which are centered on the regulation of nutrient provisioning from parent to offspring. The three different mammalian lineages have adopted very different modes of reproduction and, as a result, vary widely in the amount of nutrient provisioning to the conceptus. Examining imprinting across the three mammal groups enables us to test hypotheses on the origin of this phenomenon in mammals and also to investigate changes in the genome coincident with its evolution. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Mah E.,University of Connecticut | Bruno R.S.,Ohio State University
Nutrition Research | Year: 2012

Vascular endothelial dysfunction precedes atherosclerosis and contributes to cardiovascular disease (CVD), which accounts for one-third of all deaths in the United States. Chronic hyperglycemia, such as that associated with diabetes, is well known to impair vascular function. However, recent evidence demonstrates that acute or postprandial hyperglycemia (PPH) not only exacerbates vascular endothelial dysfunction in individuals with chronic hyperglycemia but also transiently impairs vascular function in healthy individuals. Postprandial hyperglycemia has been shown to better predict future CVD mortality compared with fasting glucose in both diabetic and normoglycemic individuals. Compelling evidence exists suggesting that PPH-mediated insults to the vascular endothelium contribute to CVD, especially in pathophysiologic conditions whereby vascular recovery is compromised. Although the mechanisms by which PPH induces vascular dysfunction is not fully understood, oxidative stress-mediated disruptions in nitric oxide homeostasis are implicated as key events leading to vascular dysfunction associated with PPH. This review aims to highlight the findings of clinical studies using functional indices of vascular function to demonstrate that PPH impairs vascular function. We will also discuss the evidence showing the central involvement of oxidative stress in dysregulating nitric oxide homeostasis and contributing to PPH-mediated vascular endothelial dysfunction. Lastly, this review will identify areas of knowledge that remain limited and will provide recommendations for future investigation to more fully define PPH as an important risk factor for CVD. © 2012.

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

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.

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.

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.

Krishnan G.M.,University of Connecticut | Thompson P.D.,Henry Low Heart Center
Current Opinion in Lipidology | Year: 2010

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors or statins are associated with a variety of muscle side-effects but little is known about the effect of statins on skeletal muscle strength and exercise performance. We performed a literature search to examine these issues. RECENT FINDINGS: We identified six studies examining the effect of statins on muscle strength and nine studies examining their effect on exercise tolerance. In general, studies examining both issues were small and used crude measures of strength and exercise performance. SUMMARY: There is insufficient data to determine if statins affect muscle strength and exercise performance. There is suggestive evidence that these drugs may reduce muscle strength in older patients and alter energy metabolism during aerobic exercise, both possibilities require further study. © 2010 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

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.

Dallas T.,University of Georgia | Presley S.J.,University of Connecticut
Oikos | Year: 2014

Identification of mechanisms that shape parasite community and metacommunity structures have important implications to host health, disease transmission, and the understanding of community assembly in general. Using a long-term dataset on parasites from desert rodents, we examined the relative contributions of host traits that represent important aspects of parasite environment, transmission probability between host species, and host phylogeny to the structure of a parasite metacommunity as well as for taxonomically restricted parasite metacommunities (coccidians, ectoparasites and helminths). This was done using a combination of metacommunity analysis and variance partitioning based on canonical correspondence analysis. Coccidian and ectoparasite metacommunities did not exhibit coherent structure. In contrast, helminths and the full parasite metacommunity had Clementsian and quasi-Clementsian structure, respectively, indicating that parasite species distributions for these metacommunities were compartmentalized along a dominant gradient. Variance decomposition indicated that characteristics associated with the host environment consistently explained more variation than did host traits associated with transmission opportunities or host phylogeny, indicating that the host environment is primary in shaping parasite species distributions among host species. Moreover, the importance of different types of host traits in structuring parasite metacommunities was consistent among taxonomic groups (i.e. full metacommunity, coccidians, and helminths) despite manifest differences in emergent structures (i.e. Clementsian, quasi-Clementsian, and random) that arose in response to variation in host environment. © 2014 The Authors.

Cesur R.,University of Connecticut | Sabia J.J.,U.S. Military Academy | Tekin E.,Georgia State University
Journal of Health Economics | Year: 2013

We exploit plausibly exogenous variation in overseas deployment assignment to estimate the effect of combat exposure on psychological well-being. Controlling for pre-deployment mental health, we find that active-duty soldiers deployed to combat zones are more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) than their counterparts deployed outside the United States in non-combat zones. Among those deployed to combat zones, those deployed to locales where they engage in enemy firefight or witness allied or civilian deaths are at an increased risk for suicidal ideation and PTSD relative to their active-duty counterparts deployed to combat zones without enemy firefight. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

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.

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.

Lee Y.J.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Asia-Pacific Entomology | Year: 2013

A new cicada genus and species, Minilomia triquetra, gen. and sp. nov., is described from Borneo. The new genus Minilomia is closely allied to Platylomia Stål and is placed in the subtribe Dundubiina of the tribe Cicadini. Another new cicada species, Pomponia brevicaudata, sp. nov. (subtribe Psithyristriina), is described from Java and Sumatra. The new species belongs to the Pomponia linearis species group and the P. linearis species complex but is distinguished from its congeners by the unusually short male abdomen. © 2013 Korean Society of Applied Entomology, Taiwan Entomological Society and Malaysian Plant Protection Society.

Caira J.N.,University of Connecticut
Journal of helminthology | Year: 2011

The collection of cestodes from the carcharhiniform shark Carcharhinus cf. dussumieri in the Persian Gulf off Iran resulted in the discovery of the new genus and species of tetraphyllidean tapeworm, Doliobothrium haselii n. gen. n. sp. Collections from the carcharhiniform shark Rhizoprionodon acutus in the Timor Sea off northern Australia resulted in material that is consistent with a species originally described as Pithophorus musculosus from this host species in India, but that appears to represent a second species in the new genus. This second species is redescribed and transferred to Doliobothrium n. gen. The two species differ from one another in total length, testis number and total number of proglottids, with the latter species generally being smaller in overall size than the former species. Histological sections and scanning electron microscopy confirm that this new genus differs from all other phyllobothriid genera in the possession of bothridia that both lack apical suckers and are tubular in form, bearing proximal and distal apertures. Despite differences in scolex morphology, the proglottids of the new genus are remarkably similar to those seen in Orectolobicestus, Paraorygmatobothrium and Ruhnkecestus, all of which also parasitize sharks. These four genera also share the presence of serrate gladiate spinitriches on their proximal bothridial surfaces. This is only the second report of a cestode from an elasmobranch from the Persian Gulf. Limited available data suggest that the fauna of this region resembles that of other regions of the Indo-Pacific. Furthermore, owing to the paucity of available information and specimens, it is recommended that Pithophorus and three of its remaining described species (i.e. P. pakistanensis, P. trygoni, P. yamagutii) be considered as a genus inquirendum and species inquirenda, respectively.

Diggle P.K.,University of Colorado at Boulder | Diggle P.K.,University of Connecticut
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2014

Within-individual variation in virtually every conceivable morphological and functional feature of reiterated structures is a pervasive feature of plant phenotypes. In particular, architectural effects, regular, repeatable patterns of intra-individual variation in form and function that are associated with position are nearly ubiquitous. Yet, flowers also are predicted to be highly integrated. For animal-pollinated plants, the coordination of multiple organs within each flower is required to achieve the complex functions of pollinator attraction and orientation, pollen donation and pollen receipt. To the extent that pollinators may select for multiple independent functions, phenotypic integration within flowers may also be modular. That is, subsets of floral structures may be integrated but vary independently of other subsets of structures that are themselves integrated. How can phenotypic integration and modularity be understood within the context of architectural effects? This essay reviews recent research on patterns of floral integration and modularity and explores the potential for spatial and temporal changes in the selective environment of individual flowers to result in positional variation in patterns of morphological integration. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

Cote R.,University of Connecticut
Advances in Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics | Year: 2016

Ultracold atomic samples doped with charged particles is a nascent field marrying two usually well-separated fields, namely trapped ions and ultracold atoms. Since the original proposals over 15 years ago, the initially slow pace has given way to rapid progress. In this chapter, we review some of the concepts relevant to this hybrid field, ranging from resonant charge transfer to the effect of isotope shifts, and the role of hyperfine and Zeeman interactions in obtaining Feshbach resonances allowing control of the scattering processes taking place. The next frontier, charges in a Bose-Einstein condensate, is also introduced and discussed. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.

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.

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.

Dunne G.V.,University of Connecticut | Unsal M.,North Carolina State University
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2015

Abstract: We study the non-perturbative dynamics of the two dimensional O(N) and Grassmannian sigma models by using compactification with twisted boundary conditions on ℝ×S1, semi-classical techniques and resurgence. While the O(N) model has no instantons for N > 3, it has (non-instanton) saddles on ℝ2, which we call 2d-saddles. On ℝ×S1, the resurgent relation between perturbation theory and non-perturbative physics is encoded in new saddles, which are associated with the affine root system of the o(N) algebra. These events may be viewed as fractionalizations of the 2d-saddles. The first beta function coefficient, given by the dual Coxeter number, can then be intepreted as the sum of the multiplicities (dual Kac labels) of these fractionalized objects. Surprisingly, the new saddles in O(N) models in compactified space are in one-to-one correspondence with monopole-instanton saddles in SO(N) gauge theory on ℝ3×S1. The Grassmannian sigma models Gr(N, M) have 2d instantons, which fractionalize into N kink-instantons. The small circle dynamics of both sigma models can be described as a dilute gas of the one-events and two-events, bions. One-events are the leading source of a variety of non-perturbative effects, and produce the strong scale of the 2d theory in the compactified theory. We show that in both types of sigma models the neutral bion emulates the role of IR-renormalons. We also study the topological theta angle dependence in both the O(3) model and Gr(N, M), and describe the multi-branched structure of the observables in terms of the theta-angle dependence of the saddle amplitudes, providing a microscopic argument for Haldane’s conjecture. © 2015, The Author(s).

Natural resource-based conflicts arise not only from divergent ideas regarding appropriate uses of the environment and resources but also from different conceptualizations of the environment and the human-environment relationship. These conflicts, defined as problems, frame understandings of both causation and potential solutions. The problem with problem definition emerges when no consensus exists regarding what constitutes management's problem definition. This article focuses on the "salmon problem," a problem that has embodied manifold and shifting conceptions of management, conservation, and control. Co-management institutions have provided greater access to previously marginalized groups to the management table. Diverse stakeholders bring with them a multiplicity of perspectives, worldviews, and discourses. This article examines these diverging views, calling attention to deep-rooted disagreements and highlighting the need for both recognition and debate on the core values and objectives of management, as well as cultural mediators, interpreters who can traverse and translate the varied discursive terrain of stakeholders. © 2011 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

The present investigation examined P3 event-related electroencephalographic potentials and a short and selected list of addiction-related candidate gene single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within 84 female students, aged 18-20yrs. The students were assigned to groups defined by the presence versus absence of a positive body mass index (BMI) change from the pre-college physical exam to the current day. Analyses revealed significantly greater P3 latencies and reduced P3 amplitudes during a response inhibition task among students who exhibited a BMI gain. BMI gain was also significantly associated with a ANKK1 SNP previously implicated in substance dependence risk. In logistic regression analyses, P3 latencies at the frontal electrode and this ANKK1 genotype correctly classified 71.1% of the students into the BMI groups. The present findings suggest that heritable indicators of impaired response inhibition can differentiate students who may be on a path toward an overweight or obese body mass. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

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.

May E.R.,University of Connecticut
Molecular Simulation | Year: 2014

Viruses are particularly challenging systems to study via molecular simulation methods. Virus capsids typically consist of over 100 subunit proteins and reach dimensions of over 100 nm; solvated viruses capsid systems can be over 1 million atoms in size. In this review, I will present recent developments which have attempted to overcome the significant computational expense to perform simulations which can inform experimental studies, make useful predictions about biological phenomena and calculate material properties relevant to nanotechnology design efforts. © 2014 Taylor & Francis.

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.

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.

Anderson A.C.,University of Connecticut
Methods in Molecular Biology | Year: 2012

Proteomic and genomic discoveries have identified vast numbers of new drug targets for investigation. In the quest to discover drugs that modulate the function of these targets, identification of small-molecule drug leads is one of the earliest steps. Structure-based drug design has emerged as a valuable, inexpensive, and rapid computational resource that identifies lead compounds that are complementary to the structure of the target. Leads identified through this process are biologically evaluated and "hit compounds" with affinity and activity are further optimized. This chapter introduces the process of structure-based drug design, including preparation of the ligand database, preparation of the target structure, docking and scoring, and evaluation. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

This paper provides the first faunal checklist for the family Cicadidae (Insecta: Hemiptera) from Mindanao, Philippines, comprising 17 species belonging to 13 genera. A new species, Chremistica kyoungheeae sp. nov., is described. Platypleura elizabethae Lee and Nelcyndana tener (Stål) are newly added to the cicada fauna of Mindanao. Dokuma Distant syn. nov. is treated as a junior synonym of Oncotympana Stål, which is redefined to include four species: O. pallidiventris Stål, O. viridicincta Stål, O. nigristigma (Walker) comb. nov., and an undescribed Oncotympana sp., all from the Philippines. Dokuma consobrina Distant syn. nov. is synonymized with O. viridicincta. A new genus, Sonata gen. nov., is described to include the following species previously placed in Oncotympana: Sonata fuscata (Distant), Sonata maculaticollis (De Motschulsky), Sonata ella (Lei & Chou), Sonata expansa (Walker), Sonata mahoni (Distant), Sonata melanoptera (Distant), Sonata obnubila (Distant), Sonata stratoria (Distant), and Sonata virescens (Distant) (nine species comb. nov.). The genus Champaka Distant stat. rev. is resurrected from junior synonymy with Platylomia Stål to include the following species previously placed in the Platylomia spinosa group: Champaka spinosa (Fabricius), Champaka abdulla (Distant), Champaka viridimaculata (Distant), Champaka nigra (Distant), Champaka virescens (Distant), Champaka meyeri (Distant), Champaka wallacei (Beuk), Champaka celebensis Distant, Champaka aerata (Distant), Champaka constanti (Lee), and Champaka maxima (Lee) (eleven species comb. nov.). The genus Nelcyndana Distant, 1906 is transferred to Cicadettini from Taphurini. A key to the species of Oncotympana and information on geographic distributions of the 17 Mindanao species are provided. Copyrigh © 2010 Magnolia Press.

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.

Smith M.,University of Connecticut | Bates D.W.,Brigham and Womens 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.

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.

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.

Yan R.,Nanjing Southeast University | Gao R.X.,University of Connecticut | Chen X.,Xian Jiaotong University
Signal Processing | Year: 2014

Over the last 20 years, particularly in last 10 years, great progress has been made in the theory and applications of wavelets and many publications have been seen in the field of fault diagnosis. This paper attempts to provide a review on recent applications of the wavelets with focus on rotary machine fault diagnosis. After brief introduction of the theoretical background on both classical wavelet transform and second generation wavelet transform, applications of wavelets in rotary machine fault diagnosis are summarized according to the following categories: continuous wavelet transform-based fault diagnosis, discrete wavelet transform-based fault diagnosis, wavelet packet transform-based fault diagnosis, and second generation wavelet transform-based fault diagnosis. In addition, some new research trends, including wavelet finite element method, dual-tree complex wavelet transform, wavelet function selection, new wavelet function design, and multi-wavelets that advance the development of wavelet-based fault diagnosis are also discussed. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Huang H.,University of Connecticut
JOM | Year: 2012

The growth of crystalline nanorods has become a common practice in the absence of a solid framework, in either theoretical or conceptual form. This article presents such a framework and puts it in historical perspective of a broader field of crystal growth. This framework derives from three scientific advancements in crystal growth, with focus on multiple-layer surface steps: (I) the diffusion barrier of adatoms down multiple-layer surface steps, (II) the formation and stability of multiple-layer surface steps, and (III) the dimension of surface facets that are bounded by competing monolayer and multiple-layer surface steps. While this framework has only a partial foundation of theoretical formulation, it is more complete conceptually. As an example of impact, this framework predicts that growth of Al nanorods is not feasible using physical vapor deposition at ambient conditions; this prediction has not been proven wrong by any available experiments. © 2012 TMS.

Wille K.,University of Connecticut | Naaman A.E.,University of Michigan
ACI Materials Journal | Year: 2012

Research on the pullout behavior of single steel fibers embedded in ultra-high-performance concretes (UHPCs) was conducted to investigate the bond properties of straight and deformed steel fibers. The main research objective was to compare the physicochemical interfacial bond properties between brass-coated straight steel fibers and the ultra-high-performance cementitious matrix with the mechanical bond properties of hooked-end and twisted steel fibers embedded in the same matrix. The results show that the enhanced bond properties provided by the ultra-high-performance cementitious matrix led to the failure of fibers having a high mechanical bond component. Tailoring of the fiber strength and mechanical bond to the matrix strength is needed for optimal pullout behavior. It is observed that the equivalent bond strength of deformed fibers embedded in UHPC reaches up to 47 MPa (6.8 ksi) - that is, almost five times the equivalent bond strength of straight fibers (10 MPa [1.4 ksi]) embedded in the same matrix. Furthermore, the equivalent bond strength of straight steel fibers, which are commonly used in ultra-high-performance fiber-reinforced concrete (UHP-FRC), can be doubled to a value exceeding 20 MPa (2.9 ksi) by optimizing the UHPC matrix through composition and particle size distribution, leading to an atypical pullout load-slip-hardening behavior. Such behavior is desirable for high tensile strength, high-energy-absorbing, strain-hardening UHP-FRC. © 2012, American Concrete Institute. All rights reserved.

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.

Guyenet P.G.,University of Virginia | Mulkey D.K.,University of Connecticut
Respiratory Physiology and Neurobiology | Year: 2010

The rat retrotrapezoid nucleus (RTN) contains about 2000 Phox2b-expressing glutamatergic neurons (ccRTN neurons; 800 in mice) with a well-understood developmental lineage. ccRTN neuron development fails in mice carrying a Phox2b mutation commonly present in the congenital central hypoventilation syndrome. In adulthood, ccRTN neurons regulate the breathing rate and intensity, and may regulate active expiration along with other neighboring respiratory neurons. Prenatally, ccRTN neurons form an autonomous oscillator (embryonic parafacial group, e-pF) that activates and possibly paces inspiration. The pacemaker properties of the ccRTN neurons probably vanish after birth to be replaced by synaptic drives. The neonatal parafacial respiratory group (pfRG) may represent a transitional phase during which ccRTN neurons lose their group pacemaker properties. ccRTN neurons are activated by acidification via an intrinsic mechanism or via ATP released by glia. In summary, throughout life, ccRTN neurons seem to be a critical hub for the regulation of CO2 via breathing. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Wille K.,University of Connecticut | Parra-Montesinos G.J.,University of Michigan
ACI Materials Journal | Year: 2012

The flexural behavior of fiber-reinforced concretes (FRCs) is typically evaluated through standard tests of beams under either three-or four-point loading. Although these test methods are standardized, test results could vary significantly depending on specimen size, concrete casting method, and support devices used. Results from a comprehensive experimental program aimed at evaluating the influence of these test parameters on material flexural behavior are presented. The investigation focused on ultra-high-strength (>150 MPa [22 ksi]) FRC, typically referred to as ultra-high-performance FRC (UHP-FRC). By varying specimen size, casting method, and support conditions to account for those normally used by researchers in accordance with ASTM C1609/C1609M and RILEM TC 162-TDF, equivalent bending strengths as low as 10 MPa (1.4 ksi) and as high as 29 MPa (4.2 ksi) were obtained using the same UHP-FRC mixture design. The degree of restraint developed at the supports intended to work as rollers was also evaluated through finite element analyses. The use of a shear friction coefficient of 0.4, which was found to be representative of that in the "high-friction" supports used in this study, led to an increase in bending strength of approximately 30% compared to beams with no axial restraint. The test results also indicate that a more specific recommendation on the casting method is needed when using highly workable FRC, given the variability in results between beams constructed following various casting methods. Copyright © 2012, American Concrete Institute. All rights reserved.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Haselton A.T.,State University of New York at New Paltz | Fridell Y.-W.C.,University of Connecticut
Aging | Year: 2010

Genetic ablation of Drosophila melanogaster insulin-like peptide (DILP) and adipokinetic hormone-producing cells accompanied by cell biological and metabolic measurements have revealed functional conservation in nutrient sensing and the underlying signaling mechanisms between mammal and fruit fly. Despite significant advances gained in understanding the neuroendocrine responses to nutrient changes during developmental larval stages, we discuss here the need for investigating glucose homeostasis in the post-mitotic adult stage as the result of ablation of DILP producing cells (IPCs). Our recent studies demonstrate that while both constitutive and adult-specific partial ablation of IPCs renders those flies hyperglycemic and glucose intolerant, flies with adult-specific IPC ablation remain insulin sensitive. Our results substantiate a role of adult IPCs in modulating aspects of glucose homeostasis and highlight the complexity in DILP action in the adult fly. © Haselto and Fridell.

Pelto P.J.,University of Connecticut
Qualitative Health Research | Year: 2015

In this article, I dispute claims that mixed methods research emerged only recently in the social sciences. I argue that some anthropologists and sociologists (and others) have used mixed methods in fieldwork for at least 80 years, and there are studies from early in the 20th century that clearly fall within the definition of "mixed methods." I explore some of the history of the mixing of qualitative and quantitative data in earlier ethnographic works and show that in some sectors of social science research, the "emergence" and proliferation of mixed methods were particularly notable around the middle of the 20th century. Furthermore, concerning issues about "paradigms of research" in the social sciences, I identify some of the types of research in which the mixing of QUAL and QUAN approaches was more likely to occur. I suggest that some of the literature about research paradigms has involved a certain amount of "myth-making" in connection with descriptions of qualitative and quantitative research assumptions and styles. © The Author(s) 2015.

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.

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.

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.

Lin S.,University of Connecticut
Research in Microbiology | Year: 2011

The phylum of dinoflagellates is characterized by many unusual and interesting genomic and physiological features, the imprint of which, in its immense genome, remains elusive. Much novel understanding has been achieved in the last decade on various aspects of dinoflagellate biology, but most remarkably about the structure, expression pattern and epigenetic modification of protein-coding genes in the nuclear and organellar genomes. Major findings include: 1) the great diversity of dinoflagellates, especially at the base of the dinoflagellate tree of life; 2) mini-circularization of the genomes of typical dinoflagellate plastids (with three membranes, chlorophylls a, c1 and c2, and carotenoid peridinin), the scrambled mitochondrial genome and the extensive mRNA editing occurring in both systems; 3) ubiquitous spliced leader trans-splicing of nuclear-encoded mRNA and demonstrated potential as a novel tool for studying dinoflagellate transcriptomes in mixed cultures and natural assemblages; 4) existence and expression of histones and other nucleosomal proteins; 5) a ribosomal protein set expected of typical eukaryotes; 6) genetic potential of non-photosynthetic solar energy utilization via proton-pump rhodopsin; 7) gene candidates in the toxin synthesis pathways; and 8) evidence of a highly redundant, high gene number and highly recombined genome. Despite this progress, much more work awaits genome-wide transcriptome and whole genome sequencing in order to unfold the molecular mechanisms underlying the numerous mysterious attributes of dinoflagellates. © 2011 Institut Pasteur.

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.

Kourelis T.V.,University of Connecticut | Siegel R.D.,Cancer Clinical Research Office
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.

Singer M.,University of Connecticut
Annals of Anthropological Practice | Year: 2011

Increasingly, it is recognized that traditional narrow approaches to environment and health relations are insufficient to comprehend and respond effectively to the complexity of factors influencing human health. In response, a new approach, referred to as Ecohealth has emerged with the goal of assessing the multiple interactions that occur between components the ecosystem, the local and global political economy, and cultural systems, on the one hand, and the ways in which these biosocial interactions influence the nature, concentration, and entwinement of health problems in human populations, on the other. Those contributing to the development of the Ecohealth orientation also seek to identify evidence-based strategies for improving the health and living conditions of human populations and the sustainability of the ecosystems in which they live. Within anthropology and public health, in particular, one reflection of the broader Ecohealth approach is expressed in the concept of syndemics, which was developed during the 1990s to label the various interactions among comorbid diseases and other health conditions that increase the burden of suffering in populations and the encompassing social relations and conditions that amplify the likelihood of adverse disease interactions occurring. In southern Africa, a notable synergism has developed between HIV/AIDS and food insecurity that significantly threatens the health and well-being of diverse populations in the region. The purpose of this chapter is to examine the key epidemiological, environmental, social, and political economic features of the entwined HIV-affected food insecurity and food insecurityaffected HIV syndemics of southern Africa. © 2011 by the American Anthropological Association.

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.

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.

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.

Mannheim P.D.,University of Connecticut
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2016

We extend the CPT theorem to quantum field theories with non-Hermitian Hamiltonians and unstable states. Our derivation is a quite minimal one as it requires only the time-independent evolution of scalar products, invariance under complex Lorentz transformations, and a non-standard but nonetheless perfectly legitimate interpretation of charge conjugation as an antilinear operator. The first of these requirements does not force the Hamiltonian to be Hermitian. Rather, it forces its eigenvalues to either be real or to appear in complex conjugate pairs, forces the eigenvectors of such conjugate pairs to be conjugates of each other, and forces the Hamiltonian to admit of an antilinear symmetry. The latter two requirements then force this antilinear symmetry to be CPT, while forcing the Hamiltonian to be real rather than Hermitian. Our work justifies the use of the CPT theorem in establishing the equality of the lifetimes of unstable particles that are charge conjugates of each other. We show that the Euclidean time path integrals of a CPT-symmetric theory must always be real. In the quantum-mechanical limit the key results of the PT symmetry program of Bender and collaborators are recovered, with the C-operator of the PT symmetry program being identified with the linear component of the charge conjugation operator. © 2015 The Author.

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.

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.

Bockorny B.,University of Connecticut | Dasanu C.A.,St Francis Hospital and Medical Center
Expert Opinion on Biological Therapy | Year: 2013

Introduction: Individuals affected by kidney cancer present a variety of immune abnormalities including cellular immune dysfunction, cytokine alterations and antigen presentation defects. On the other hand, spontaneous remissions are seen in up to 4% of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) patients and they are thought to occur via immune mechanisms. Areas covered: The authors comprehensively review the immune abnormalities in RCC patient and describe the kidney cancer immunotherapy candidates that are most advanced in their clinical development. Most relevant publications were identified through searching the PubMed database; the obtained information was thoroughly analyzed and synthesized. Expert opinion: As cure in advanced RCC cannot be accomplished with the current therapy standards such as tyrosine kinase inhibitors and mammalian target of rapamycin inhibitors, new treatment strategies are being sought. Enhancing the immune system represents an appealing avenue for kidney cancer therapy. Disappointingly, high-dose interleukin-2 and interferon-α cause severe toxicity and produce a questionable clinical benefit. The authors postulate that the 'durable responses' seen with these agents in only a handful of RCC patients represent spontaneous remissions. Promising immune strategies in RCC such as anti-cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated protein antibodies, anti-programmed cell death 1 (PD1)/PD1 ligand and tumor vaccines may expand the existing options for kidney cancer in future years. © 2013 Informa UK, Ltd.

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.

Cole J.L.,University of Connecticut
Macromolecular Bioscience | Year: 2010

Protein kinase R (PKR) is a central component of the interferon antiviral defense pathway. Upon binding to dsRNA, PKR undergoes autophosphorylation reactions that activate the kinase, resulting in the inhibition of protein synthesis in virally-infected cells. We have used analytical ultracentrifugation and related biophysical methods to quantitatively characterize the stoichiometries, affinities, and free energy couplings that govern the assembly of the macromolecular complexes in the PKR activation pathway. These studies demonstrate that PKR dimerization play a key role in enzymatic activation and support a model where the role of dsRNA is to bring two or more PKR monomers in close proximity to enhance dimerization. © 2010 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.

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.

Wang Z.,Connecticut Childrens Medical Center | Wang Z.,University of Connecticut
Journal of Statistical Software | Year: 2013

In medical and epidemiological studies, the odds ratio is a commonly applied measure to approximate the relative risk or risk ratio in cohort studies. It is well known tha such an approximation is poor and can generate misleading conclusions, if the incidence rate of a study outcome is not rare. However, there are times when the incidence rate is not directly available in the published work. Motivated by real applications, this paper presents methods to convert the odds ratio to the relative risk when published data offers limited information. Specifically, the proposed new methods can convert the odds ratio to the relative risk, if an odds ratio and/or a confidence interval as well as the sample sizes for the treatment and control group are available. In addition, the developed methods can be utilized to approximate the relative risk based on the adjusted odds ratio from logistic regression or other multiple regression models. In this regard, this paper extends a popular method by Zhang and Yu (1998) for converting odds ratios to risk ratios. The objective is novelly mapped into a constrained nonlinear optimization problem, which is solved with both a grid search and a nonlinear optimization algorithm. The methods are implemented in R package orsk which contains R functions and a Fortran subroutine for efficiency. The proposed methods and software are illustrated with real data applications.

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.

Mayer B.J.,Richard rlin Center For Cell Analysis And Modeling | Mayer B.J.,University of Connecticut
Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology | Year: 2015

Cell signalling-the ability of a cell to process information from the environment and change its behaviour in response-is a central property of life. Signalling depends on proteins that are assembled from a toolkit of modular domains, each of which confers a specific activity or function. The discovery of modular protein- and lipid-binding domains was a crucial turning point in understanding the logic and evolution of signalling mechanisms. © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.