Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Santiago de Compostela, Spain

The University of Santiago de Compostela - USC is a public university located in the city of Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain. A second campus is located in Lugo, Galicia. It is one of the world's oldest universities in continuous operation.The university traces its roots back to 1495, when a school was opened in Santiago. In 1504, Pope Julius II approved the foundation of a university in Santiago but "the bull for its creation was not granted by Clement VII until 1526". In 1555 the institute began to separate itself from strictly religious instruction with the help of Cardinal Juan Álvarez de Toledo and started to work towards developing other academic fields, including the emerging science fields.Today the university's facilities cover more than 1,300,000 square meters . In terms of human resources, the university has more than 2,000 teachers involved in study and research, over 42,000 students, and more than 1,000 people working in administration and services. Moreover, in 2009, the University received the accreditation of Campus of International Excellence by the Ministry of Education , recognising USC as one of the most prestigious universities in Spain.The university ranks 5th in Spain's best universities ranking by Complutense University of Madrid and IAIF and 4th amongst public universities. Wikipedia.

Time filter

Source Type

Sanofi S.A. and University of Santiago de Compostela | Date: 2015-06-12

Nanocapsule systems of at least one active pharmaceutical ingredient selected from the group consisting of at least one insulin, insulin analogue, insulin derivative, glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist (GLP1 R agonist) and/or dual GLP-1 receptor/glucagon receptor agonist and/or or any combination thereof are disclosed.

Fundacion Pedro Barrie De La Maza, Sergas, University of Santiago de Compostela, Fundacion Ramon Dominguez and Biomerix | Date: 2015-04-30

The present invention relates to a composition for modulating tumor cell dissemination, in particular metastatic cancer cells. In particular, the invention relates to an agent for modulating metastatic tumor cell dissemination for use in the treatment and/or prevention of a metastatic cancer wherein the agent an extracellular matrix (ECM) protein carried on a polycarbonate polyurethane matrix. The invention also relates to a product, comprising an agent for modulating metastatic tumor cell dissemination, and to a method of treatment or prevention of cancer.

University of Vigo and University of Santiago de Compostela | Date: 2017-01-11

The present invention refers to pyridazin-3(2H)-one derivatives of general structure I, II and III, which are selective MAO-B inhibitors, and to the use thereof for preparing pharmaceutical compositions intended to treat disorders derived from MAO-B hyperactivity, particularly degenerative disorders of the central nervous system (CNS), such as Parkinsons disease (PD), Alzheimers disease (AD) and other dementias. These are pyridazin-3(2H)-one derivatives having dithiocarbamate moieties bonded to position 4, 5 or 6 through an alkyl chain of variable length (n=1, 2, 3). This invention is also directed to the preparation of said compounds.

University of Santiago de Compostela | Date: 2017-01-04

The invention relates to a method and a system for struvite crystallization of in order to recover phosphates in urban or industrial wastewater preferably having phosphate concentrations higher than 50 mg P/L, more preferably higher than 100 mg P/L, where phosphates are recovered by means of the crystallization thereof in the form of struvite granules, the diameter of which can reach up to 5 mm. The struvite crystallization system is formed by a crystallizer (1), a decanter (2) with a distribution system (9), and a unit for adding industrial magnesium hydroxide (3). The phosphates are recovered from the wastewater as a result of two steps : a step of growing struvite granules, and a step of growing fine struvite crystals.

Reboredo J.C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Quintela M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Otero L.A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2017

We studied the financial performance of alternative energy mutual funds using multifactor models and propensity score matching techniques. For a sample of alternative energy mutual funds quoted in EUR and in USD for the period 2010–2016, we found that alternative energy funds underperformed corporate and socially responsible mutual funds in terms of returns and downside risk protection. Our results are consistent with the idea that investors are paying a premium for going green via renewable energies. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Fernandez-Pineiro I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Badiola I.,University of the Basque Country | Sanchez A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Biotechnology Advances | Year: 2017

The number of deaths caused by cancer is expected to increase partly due to the lack of selectivity and undesirable systemic effects of current treatments. Advances in the understanding of microRNA (miRNA) functions and the ideal properties of nanosystems have brought increasing attention to the application of nanomedicine to cancer therapy. This review covers the different miRNA therapeutic strategies and delivery challenges for its application in cancer medicine. Current trends in inorganic, polymeric and lipid nanocarrier development for miRNA replacement or inhibition are summarized. To achieve clinical success, in-depth knowledge of the effects of the promotion or inhibition of specific miRNAs is required. To establish the dose and the length of treatment, it will be necessary to study the duration of gene silencing. Additionally, efforts should be made to develop specifically targeted delivery systems to cancer cells to reduce doses and unwanted effects. In the near future, the combination of miRNAs with other therapeutic approaches is likely to play an important role in addressing the heterogeneity of cancer. © 2017 Elsevier Inc.

Fananas-Mastral M.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Synthesis (Germany) | Year: 2017

The unique reactivity of diaryliodonium salts with copper complexes has been applied to a variety of synthetic organic transformations. These hypervalent iodine compounds have been used for diverse copper-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions including C–H functionalizations, enantioselective C–C bond formation, cascade reactions and different heteroatom arylation processes. This review provides a summary of recent developments on this topic and discusses both the synthetic utility and mechanisms of these transformations. 1 Introduction 2 Historical Background 3 Arylation of Carbon Nucleophiles 3.1 Arylation of Organometallic Compounds 3.2 Arylation of Heteroarenes 3.3 Arylation of Arenes 3.4 Arylation of Alkenes 3.5 Arylation of Alkynes 4 Nitrogen Arylation 4.1 Arylation of Acyclic Amine Derivatives 4.2 Arylation of Cyclic Amine Derivatives 4.3 Arylation of Nitriles 4.4 Arylation of Azides 5 Oxygen Arylation 6 Arylation of Other Heteroatoms 6.1 Fluorine Arylation 6.2 Sulfur Arylation 6.3 Phosphorus Arylation 6.4 Iodine Arylation 7 Summary and Conclusions Copyright © 2017, Georg Thieme Verlag. All rights reserved.

Pereira A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Turnes A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Vence X.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2017

The adoption of a servicizing approach to pest control has been pointed out as a strategy to reduce the environmental impact of the agricultural sector. However, and especially in smallholding agriculture, the adoption of crop protection services is quite limited and the “calendar” approach is still dominant. The objective of this paper is to define crop protection solutions as an environmentally-friendly service innovation and to explore the main barriers to its diffusion in smallholding viticulture. The research builds on a case study referred to grape growing in the Rías Baixas Designation of Origin (Galicia, Spain). Crop protection solutions are defined in this paper as a servicized model of crop protection linked to the implementation of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) schemes. Two levels of servicizing are identified: the first one consists just of providing IPM advice to the farmer, whereas the second level implies the undertaking of the work on behalf of farmers by a service company. The case study shows that there are several barriers that hinder this type of services starting naturally in the market. On the supply side, companies must adapt their organisation to provide a flexible service that is information-intensive and that requires a sufficient staff in order to provide an effective answer within a limited timeframe; additionally, innovative technologies are still developing. On the demand side, the outsourcing of vineyard protection is deemed to be unnecessary, since grape growing keep many features of a part-time farming activity and farmers receive collaboration from their relatives. Other institutional, territory and crop-specific features add to the complexities. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Gonzalez-Garcia S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gullon B.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Moreira M.T.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2017

The European Commission is adopting strategies in order to "closing the loop" of product life cycles in industrial production systems through better recycling and re-use under the perspective of circular economy. One of the most relevant goals in the application of this approach is to convert low-value side streams into more valuable products. In this sense, the conversion of lignocellulosic biomass into biofuels and chemicals is a major challenge not only from the technological but also from the economic and environmental perspectives.In this study, the production of pectin-derived oligosaccharides (POS) from sugar beet pulp (SBP) was environmentally assessed by means of the Life Cycle Assessment methodology under a cradle-to-gate approach. Two different scenarios at pilot scale were considered: Scenario 1 based on conventional autohydrolysis at high temperature and Scenario 2 based on enzymatic hydrolysis.The outcomes of this environmental study are highly dependent on the production yield of the target compounds (POS) and the valorisation strategy considered. In fact, the POS yield of the autohydrolysis approach is around 20% higher than in the enzymatic one. According to the results, Scenario 1 reports the worst results when a functional unit based on the amount of valorised material (100 kg of oven-dried SBP) is considered. However, the profile entirely changes when a unit based on the economic revenue (1 €) is managed. Therefore, attention should be paid on the selection of the functional unit since decision making strategies should highly depend on it.Without waiting for the opportunity to conduct LCA of already-developed processes of the biorefinery system, the development of new alternatives must be carried out with sustainability in mind. Accordingly, the proposal of valorisation strategies for secondary streams should include the analysis of the environmental impacts associated to each alternative, even at the pilot plant stage. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd.

Sanchez-Hernandez J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Knowledge and Management of Aquatic Ecosystems | Year: 2017

The non-native parasitic anchor worm (Lernaea cyprinacea) may induce anaemia, malformations, reduced growth and increased susceptibility to secondary infection to its hosts. The objectives of this study were to (i) compile a list of the host species of L. cyprinacea in the Iberian Peninsula and (ii) assess if climate may impact on infestation levels of the parasite. There were two primary sources for data collection: (i) fish sampling in the Tormes Basin (Ávila, central Spain) during August 2010 and 2016 and (ii) data retrieved from publications containing relevant information about L. cyprinacea. Eleven temperature variables were obtained from Worldclim. Next, the relationship between infestation levels of the anchor worm (prevalence, intensity and abundance) and temperature was tested using mixed models. Fifteen cyprinids species among 18 species are host of L. cyprinacea in the Iberian Peninsula. Infestation levels of the anchor worm are highly connected to temperature. Finally, the possible implications of global warming for host-parasite interactions are discussed. © J. Sánchez-Hernández, Published by EDP Sciences 2017.

Fumega A.O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Pardo V.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Physics Condensed Matter | Year: 2017

In this paper we explore the different mechanisms that affect the thermopower of a band insulating perovskite (in this case, SrTiO3) when subject to strain (both compressive or tensile). We analyze the high temperature, entropy-dominated limit and the lower temperature, energy-transport regime. We observe that the effect of strain in the high-temperature Seebeck coefficient is small at the concentration levels of interest for thermoelectric applications. However, the effective mass changes substantially with strain, which produces an opposite effect to that of the degeneracy breakups brought about by strain. In particular, we find that the thermopower can be enhanced by applying tensile strain in the adequate regime. We conclude that the detrimental effect of strain in thermopower due to band splitting is a minor effect that will not hamper the optimization of the thermoelectric properties of oxides with t2g-active bands by applying strain. © 2016 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Paakkinen P.,University of Jyväskylä | Eskola K.J.,University of Jyväskylä | Eskola K.J.,Helsinki Institute of Physics | Paukkunen H.,University of Jyväskylä | And 2 more authors.
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2017

Despite the success of modern nuclear parton distribution functions (nPDFs) in describing nuclear hard-process data, they still suffer from large uncertainties. One of the poorly constrained features is the possible asymmetry in nuclear modifications of valence u and d quarks. We study the possibility of using pion–nucleus Drell–Yan dilepton data as a new constraint in the global analysis of nPDFs. We find that the nuclear cross-section ratios from the NA3, NA10 and E615 experiments can be used without imposing significant new theoretical uncertainties and, in particular, that these datasets may have some constraining power on the u/d-asymmetry in nuclei. © 2017 The Authors

Bahritidinov B.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sanchez E.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Expert Systems | Year: 2017

The aim of the study reported here was to predict students' grades based on context and personal state variables. Motivation for the study derives from the need to provide accurate recommendations about both educational resources and activities that match students' requirements and expectations. The proposed prediction method takes advantage of information associated with the context variables of the students, proposes the identification of clusters that group students with similar attributes, and estimates the final grade based on a probabilistic model. The findings show that the proposed model outperforms other existing models in terms of error accuracy. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Bara S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Escofet J.,Polytechnic University of Catalonia
Lighting Research and Technology | Year: 2017

The spectral composition of the light that reaches any indoor work plane depends on the characteristics of the light sources and the spectral reflectances of the surrounding surfaces due to the multiple reflections experienced by the light rays along their paths from the source to the observation point. We show that in indoor spaces, the source and surface radiances must obey a definite self-consistent relationship derived from the fact that each illuminated surface point acts as a secondary source of light. It is then established that the spectral irradiance on any plane is linearly dependent on the spectral radiance of the light source. The explicit integral form of this relationship provides a theoretical framework for a quantitative description of the surface effects. Additionally, under very general assumptions, we show that the spectral irradiance can be computed from the spectral flux of the source through a simple multiplication by a wavelength-dependent function. This function, with units of inverse surface (1/m2), provides a convenient way for evaluating the effects that arbitrary changes in the source spectrum will produce on the spectral irradiance at the indoor point under study. © The Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers 2015.

Bermudez A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gonzalez-Diaz J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gonzalez-Dieguez F.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Nonlinear Analysis: Real World Applications | Year: 2017

In this paper we prove the existence of solution to a mathematical model for gas transportation networks on non-flat topography. Firstly, the network topology is represented by a directed graph and then a nonlinear system of numerical equations is introduced whose unknowns are the pressures at the nodes and the mass flow rates at the edges of the graph. This system is written in a compact vector form in terms of the vector of the square pressures at the nodes and then an existence result is proved under some simplifying assumptions. The proof is done in two steps: the first one uses convex analysis tools and the second one the Brouwer fixed-point theorem. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Castineira G.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rodriguez-Aros A.,University of La Coruña
Journal of Elasticity | Year: 2017

We consider a family of linearly viscoelastic shells with thickness (Formula presented.), clamped along their entire lateral face, all having the same middle surface (Formula presented.), where (Formula presented.) is a bounded and connected open set with a Lipschitz-continuous boundary (Formula presented.). We make an essential geometrical assumption on the middle surface (Formula presented.), which is satisfied if (Formula presented.) and (Formula presented.) are smooth enough and (Formula presented.) is uniformly elliptic. We show that, if the applied body force density is (Formula presented.) with respect to (Formula presented.) and surface tractions density is (Formula presented.), the solution of the scaled variational problem in curvilinear coordinates, (Formula presented.), defined over the fixed domain (Formula presented.) for each (Formula presented.), converges to a limit (Formula presented.) with (Formula presented.) in (Formula presented.) and (Formula presented.) in (Formula presented.) as (Formula presented.). Moreover, we prove that this limit is independent of the transverse variable. Furthermore, the average (Formula presented.), which belongs to the space (Formula presented.), where (Formula presented.) satisfies what we have identified as (scaled) two-dimensional equations of a viscoelastic membrane elliptic shell, which includes a long-term memory that takes into account previous deformations. We finally provide convergence results which justify those equations. © 2017 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht

Barral D.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Linares J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
IEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics | Year: 2017

In this paper, we propose a versatile integrated optical chip with the ability to generate both coherent and squeezed Bell-like states for quantum information processing purposes. This is a reconfigurable quantum photonic circuit in a lithium niobate substrate, which produces both non-local addition and subtraction of photons on squeezed vacuum states with directional couplers and post-selection. Setting appropriately phases and powers of the input beams, as well as electro-optic phase shifts, coherent and continuous variable Bell-like states are obtained. An analysis of the device operation in both the ideal and realistic scenarios is presented. © 1965-2012 IEEE.

Armesto N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rezaeian A.H.,Federico Santa María Technical University
AIP Conference Proceedings | Year: 2017

We show that diffractive production in ultra-peripheral high-energy collisions in small-x region provides a unique opportunity to discriminate among saturation and non-saturation models. We present various predictions for exclusive diffractive processes in ultra-peripheral collisions at the LHC, the LHeC, and the FCC. © 2017 Author(s).

Garcia-Gonzalez I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Souto-Herrero M.,University of Santiago de Compostela
European Journal of Forest Research | Year: 2017

We selected two sites dominated by the sub-Mediterranean oak Quercus pyrenaica Willd. close to its distribution boundary in northwestern Iberia, within a mountain region with a high winter precipitation. The sites differed in their soil water regime, corresponding to the edge of a peat bog, and to a moderate slope. We obtained tree-ring chronologies of total ring width (RW), and mean earlywood vessel area (MVA); their responses to climatic factors were compared for the period 1945–2002. RW presented a higher chronology quality than MVA, but was rather independent of climate, probably because of the presence of recurrent growth reductions. In contrast, MVA was closely related to precipitation during April and May, whereby a high water availability was coupled to smaller vessels. We found remarkable differences between the climatic signal of both stands, as trees growing on the peat soil responded later and with considerably lower intensity. We hypothesize that spring waterlogging causes that the response at the wettest site occurs only when soil desiccation begins, which results in a delayed climatic signal, and also lower intra- and inter-annual variation due to more homogeneous conditions. Climate–growth relationships at the driest site were mainly associated with the first row, whereas it is vessels expanding later in the season that show this relation for the moist site. Our results confirm that MVA chronologies are reliable proxies of both regional and local climatic conditions, but only a careful optimization by selecting vessel subsets does provide a complete view of their potential. © 2017 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

Polo E.,University College Dublin | Collado M.,Complexo Hospitalario Universitario Of Santiago Of Compostela Chus | Pelaz B.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Del Pino P.,University of Santiago de Compostela
ACS Nano | Year: 2017

In this Perspective, we describe current challenges and recent advances in efficient delivery and targeting of nanoparticles in vivo. We discuss cancer therapy, nanoparticle-biomolecule interactions, nanoparticle trafficking in cells, and triggers and responses to nanoparticle-cell interactions. No matter which functionalization strategy to target cancer is chosen, passive or active targeting, more than 99% of the nanoparticles administered in vivo end up in the mononuclear phagocytic system, mainly sequestered by macrophages. Comprehensive studies, such as the one reported by MacParland et al. in this issue of ACS Nano, will help to close the gap between nanotechnology-based drug-delivery solutions and advanced medicinal products. © 2017 American Chemical Society.

Saavedra L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Tersian S.,University of Ruse
Nonlinear Analysis: Real World Applications | Year: 2017

The aim of this paper is to study the existence and multiplicity of weak and classic solutions for a 2nth-order differential equation involving the p-Laplacian coupled with periodic boundary conditions. The results are proved by using the minimization argument and an extended Clark's theorem. Some particular cases are shown. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd

Dieguez A.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Romalde J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Genome Announcements | Year: 2017

We present the draft genomes of two strains previously identified as Neptuniibacter sp. LFT 1.8 (= CECT 8936 = DSM 100781) and ATR 1.1 (= CECT 8938 = DSM 100783) isolated from larvae of great scallops (Pecten maximus) and seawater, respectively. Both strains surely constitute two novel species in this genus, with putative applications for aromatic compound degradation. © 2017 Diéguez and Romalde.

Norman G.,University of Surrey | Pedley S.,University of Surrey | Takkouche B.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Takkouche B.,Research Center Biomedica En Red Of Epidemiologia lud Publica
The Lancet Infectious Diseases | Year: 2010

Background: Sanitation is inadequate in most cities in developing countries, with major effects on infectious disease burden: in this situation, is piped sewerage an appropriate solution, or should efforts focus on systems based on onsite solutions, such as latrines? We reviewed the effects of the presence of sewerage systems on diarrhoeal disease and related outcomes. We included only observational studies because so far there have been no randomised controlled trials. Methods: We identified relevant studies by use of a comprehensive strategy including searches of Medline and other databases from 1966 to February, 2010. In studies that compared sewerage with one other sanitation category, we used relative risk (RR) estimates for sewerage versus the other category. When a single study made two or more comparisons, we calculated a weighted average RR value, and used this value in our meta-analysis. We used the most adjusted RR estimate provided by the authors; if no adjusted estimate was available, we used the crude estimate. To obtain pooled-effect estimates, meta-analyses were done by use of an inverse variance method-ie, the study-specific adjusted log ORs for case-control and cross-sectional studies, and log RRs for cohort studies, were weighted by the inverse of their variance to compute a pooled RR with 95% CI. Findings: 25 studies investigated the association between sewerage and diarrhoea or related outcomes, including presence of intestinal nematodes. Pooled estimates show that sewerage systems typically reduce diarrhoea incidence by about 30% (RR 0·70, 95% CI 0·61-0·79), or perhaps as much as 60% when starting sanitation conditions are very poor. Studies with objective outcome measures showed even stronger pooled effect than studies that assessed diarrhoea incidence with interviews, while sensitivity analysis indicated that the effect remains even if we assume strong residual confounding. Interpretation: Sewerage interventions seem to reduce the incidence of diarrhoea and related outcomes. However, we urge cautious interpretation of these findings, because, in many contexts, sewerage might be less cost effective and sustainable than onsite alternatives. Funding: None. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Camanho X.O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Edelstein J.D.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Paulos M.F.,University Pierre and Marie Curie
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2011

We consider Lovelock theories of gravity in the context of AdS/CFT. We show that, for these theories, causality violation on a black hole background can occur well in the interior of the geometry, thus posing more stringent constraints than were previously found in the literature. Also, we find that instabilities of the geometry can appear for certain parameter values at any point in the geometry, as well in the bulk as close to the horizon. These new sources of causality violation and instability should be related to CFT features that do not depend on the UV behavior. They solve a puzzle found previously concerning unphysical negative values for the shear viscosity that are not ruled out solely by causality restrictions. We find that, contrary to previous expectations, causality violation is not always related to positivity of energy. Furthermore, we compute the bound for the shear viscosity to entropy density ratio of supersymmetric conformal field theories from d = 4 till d = 10 | i.e., up to quartic Lovelock theory {, and find that it behaves smoothly as a function of d. We propose an approximate formula that nicely fits these values and has a nice asymptotic behavior when d ! ∞ for any Lovelock gravity. We discuss in some detail the latter limit. We finally argue that it is possible to obtain increasingly lower values for η=s by the inclusion of more Lovelock terms. © SISSA 2011.

Hoare B.,Humboldt University of Berlin | Hollowood T.J.,University of Swansea | Miramontes J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2013

The world-sheet S-matrix of the string in AdS5×S 5 has been shown to admit a q-deformation that relates it to the S-matrix of a generalization of the sine-Gordon theory, which arises as the Pohlmeyer reduction of the superstring. Whilst this is a fascinating development the resulting S-matrix is not explicitly unitary. The problem has been known for a long time in the context of S-matrices related to quantum groups. A braiding relation often called "unitarity" actually only corresponds to quantum field theory unitarity when the S-matrix is Hermitian analytic and quantum group S-matrices manifestly violate this. On the other hand, overall consistency of the S-matrix under the bootstrap requires that the deformation parameter is a root of unity and consequently one is forced to perform the "vertex" to IRF, or SOS, transformation on the states to truncate the spectrum consistently. In the IRF formulation unitarity is now manifest and the string S-matrix and the S-matrix of the generalised sine-Gordon theory are recovered in two different limits. In the latter case, expanding the Yang-Baxter equation we find that the tree-level S-matrix of the Pohlmeyer-reduced string should satisfy a modified classical Yang-Baxter equation explaining the apparent anomaly in the perturbative computation. We show that the IRF form of the S-matrix meshes perfectly with the bootstrap equations.

Otero A.,University of San Pablo - CEU | Felix P.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Alvarez M.R.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Expert Systems with Applications | Year: 2011

The diagnosis of Sleep Apnoea-Hypopnoea Syndrome requires the visual inspection of a recording containing a large number of physiological parameters of the patient - the polysomnogram. The purpose of this visual inspection is the identification and characterization of different types of pathological events that occur over these parameters. These events are defined by a set of morphological criteria. Based on these criteria, commercial tools have been developed to support clinicians in the task of visually inspecting polysomnograms. This article argues that the standard morphological criteria are just guiding recommendations that experienced physicians often adapt to each specific diagnostic context. Thus, tools that support the analysis of polysomnograms ideally should use flexible criteria that could be easily customizable by clinicians. In this paper, we propose algorithms capable of identifying pathological events relevant in the diagnosis of SAHS using custom criteria that are acquired directly from the clinician. These algorithms take advantage of the Fuzzy Set Theory to capture and handle the vagueness and uncertainty that are characteristics of medical knowledge. Knowledge acquisition using the traditional linguistic approach of the Fuzzy Sets Theory is supported by a desktop tool. However, the authors feel that some of the criteria that need to be acquired are more visual in nature than linguistic. An alternative mechanism for the visual acquisition of these criteria is proposed. Finally, when presenting the pathological events that have been identified, the tool uses several visual metaphors designed to simplify visual inspection of the polysomnogram. We have validated our proposal over 69 h of polysomnographic recordings arising from 12 patients that were subjected to a sleep study. 95.7% of the events identified were correct detections. The rate of false negatives was 1.6%. © 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Martins R.B.,Piaget Institute | Martins R.B.,Piaget Alimentar Unipessoal Lda | Hogg T.,Catholic University of Portugal | Otero J.G.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Food Control | Year: 2012

The aim of this study was to assess the food hygiene knowledge of professional food handlers from an institutional catering company which manufactures and distributes meals to the canteens of schools, kindergartens and nursing homes in Portugal. A total of 101 food handlers from 18 geographically distributed business units were assessed. Data collection employed a previously used, multiple-choice questionnaire, aimed at exploring the food safety knowledge and practices of individual respondents. The average score of questions answered correctly was 13 out of 23 (56.5%) with a standard deviation (SD) of 3.22. However, the percentage of correct answers varies with the issues questioned, being significantly lower on issues such as temperature control (p < 0.001) and sources of contamination/high-risk foods (p < 0.001). The level of knowledge was influenced by the level of formal education (p = 0.025) of respondents. The results reinforce the importance of conducting a preliminary assessment of training needs and evaluating the effectiveness of training. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Pardo V.,University of California at Davis | Pardo V.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Pickett W.E.,University of California at Davis
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

The recently synthesized layered nickelate La4Ni 3O8, with its cupratelike NiO2 layers, seemingly requires a Ni1 (d8)+2Ni2(d9) charge order, together with strong correlation effects, to account for its insulating behavior. Using density functional methods including strong intra-atomic repulsion (Hubbard U), we obtain an insulating state via a new mechanism: without charge order, correlated (Mott) insulating behavior arises based on quantum-coupled, spin-aligned molecular Ni2-Ni1-Ni2 dz2 trimer states across the trilayer (molecular rather than atomic states), with antiferromagnetic ordering within layers. The weak and frustrated magnetic coupling between cells may account for the small spin entropy that is removed at the Néel transition at 105 K and the lack of any diffraction peak at the Néel point. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Pazos E.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Golicnik M.,University of Ljubljana | Mascarenas J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Eugenio Vazquez M.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Chemical Communications | Year: 2012

The luminescence of a designed peptide equipped with a coordinatively- unsaturated lanthanide complex is modulated by the phosphorylation state of a serine residue in the sequence. While the phosphorylated state is weakly emissive, even in the presence of an external antenna, removal of the phosphate allows coordination of the sensitizer to the metal, yielding a highly emissive supramolecular complex. © 2012 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Conde E.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gaillard J.,University of Swansea
Nuclear Physics B | Year: 2011

We study the addition of Nf flavor D5-branes to supergravity solutions describing D5-branes wrapping two-cycles of genus g>1 inside a six-dimensional space equipped with an SU(3)-structure. The non-zero genus g on the gravity side is dual to the existence of massless adjoint chiral superfields. Three types of internal manifolds are considered, each involving one of the following fibered products: H2×SL̃2, S2×SL̃2 or H2×S3, where SL̃2 stands for the universal cover of SL(2,R). For the first one, we investigate the dual field theories. We show that some of the solutions with Nf≠0 are dual to four-dimensional N=1 field theories exhibiting a Kutasov-like duality taking Nc→kNf-Nc and keeping Nf fixed. Computed from the supergravity picture, k is in general a rational number, which can be made integer to fit the expectation from the field theory side. We finally study some other properties of those field theories. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Hollowood T.J.,University of Swansea | Miramontes J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2011

In this note, we summarize recent progress in constructing and then semiclassically quantizing solitons, or non-abelian Q-balls, in the symmetric space sine-Gordon theories. We then consider the images of these solitons in the related constrained sigma model, which are the dyonic giant magnons on the string theory world-sheet. Focussing on the case of the symmetric space S5, we perform a semi-classical quantization of the solitons and magnons and show that both lead to Chern-Simons quantum mechanics on the internal moduli space which is a real Grassmannian SO(4)/SO(2) × SO(2) but - importantly - with a different coupling constant. Quantizing this system shows that both the Q-balls and magnons come in a tower of states transforming in symmetric representations of the SO(4) symmetry group; however, the former come in a finite tower whereas the latter come in the well-known infinite tower of dyonic giant magnons. © SISSA 2011.

Hollowood T.J.,University of Swansea | Miramontes J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2011

The generalized symmetric space sine-Gordon theories are a series of 1 + 1- integrable field theories that are classically equivalent to superstrings on symmetric space spacetimes F/G. They are formulated in terms of a semi-symmetric space as a gauged WZW model with fermions and a potential term to deform it away from the conformal fixed point. We consider in particular the case of PSU(2, 2|4)/Sp(2, 2) × Sp(4) which corresponds to AdS5× S5. We argue that the infinite tower of conserved charges of these theories includes an exotic N = (8, 8) supersymmetry that is realized in a mildy nonlocal way at the Lagrangian level. The supersymmetry is associated to a double central extension of the superalgebra psu(2|2) ⊕ psu(2|2) and includes a non-trivial R symmetry algebra corresponding to global gauge transformations, as well as 2-dimensional spacetime translations. We then explicitly construct soliton solutions and show that they carry an internal moduli superspace ℂℙ2|1 × ℂℙ2|1 with both bosonic and Grassmann collective coordinates. We show how to semi-classical quantize the solitons by writing an effective quantum mechanical system on the moduli space which takes the form of a co-adjoint orbit of SU(2|2)×2. The spectrum consists of a tower of massive states in the short, or atypical, symmetric representations, just as the giant magnon states of the string world sheet theory, although here the tower is truncated. © SISSA 2011.

Quan Y.,University of California at Davis | Pardo V.,University of California at Davis | Pardo V.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Pickett W.E.,University of California at Davis
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2012

While the formal valence and charge state concepts have been tremendously important in materials physics and chemistry, their very loose connection to actual charge leads to uncertainties in modeling behavior and interpreting data. We point out, taking several transition metal oxides (La2VCuO 6, YNiO3, CaFeO3, AgNiO2, V 4O7) as examples, that while dividing the crystal charge into atomic contributions is an ill-posed activity, the 3d occupation of a cation (and more particularly, differences) is readily available in first principles calculations. We discuss these examples, which include distinct charge states and charge-order (or disproportionation) systems, where different "charge states" of cations have identical 3d orbital occupation. Implications for theoretical modeling of such charge states and charge-ordering mechanisms are discussed. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Carrete J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gallego L.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Varela L.M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Mingo N.,CEA Grenoble
Physical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics | Year: 2011

By explicitly considering surface roughness at the atomic level, we quantitatively show that the thermal conductivity of Si nanowires can be lower than Casimir's classical limit. However, this violation only occurs for deep surface degradation. For shallow surface roughness, the Casimir formula is shown to yield a good approximation to the phonon mean free paths and conductivity, even for nanowire diameters as thin as 2.22nm. Our exact treatment of roughness scattering is in stark contrast with a previously proposed perturbative approach, which is found to overpredict scattering rates by an order of magnitude. The obtained results suggest that a complete theoretical understanding of some previously published experimental results is still lacking. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Camanhoa X.O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Edelstein J.D.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2010

We explore the relation between positivity of the energy constraints in conformal field theories and causality in their dual gravity description. Our discussion involves CFTs with different central charges whose description, in the gravity side, requires the inclusion of quadratic curvature corrections. It is enough, indeed, to consider the Gauss- Bonnet term. We find that both sides of the AdS/CFT correspondence impose a restriction on the Gauss-Bonnet coupling. In the case of 6d supersymmetric CFTs, we show the full matching of these restrictions. We perform this computation in two ways. First by considering a thermal setup in a black hole background. Second by scrutinizing the scattering of gravitons with a shock wave in AdS. The different helicities provide the corresponding lower and upper bounds. We generalize these results to arbitrary higher dimensions and comment on some hints and puzzles they prompt regarding the possible existence of higher dimensional CFTs and the extent to which the AdS/CFT correspondence would be valid for them. © SISSA 2010.

Camanho X.O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Edelstein J.D.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2010

We explore the constraints imposed on higher curvature corrections of the Lovelock type due to causality restrictions in the boundary of asymptotically AdS spacetime. In the framework of AdS/CFT, this is related to positivity of the energy constraints that arise in conformal collider physics. We present explicit analytic results that fully address these issues for cubic Lovelock gravity in arbitrary dimensions and give the formal analytic results that comprehend general Lovelock theory. The computations can be performed in two ways, both by considering a thermal setup in a black hole background and by studying the scattering of gravitons with a shock wave in ads. We show that both computations coincide in Lovelock theory. The different helicities, as expected, provide the boundaries defining the region of allowed couplings. We generalize these results to arbitrary higher dimensions and discuss their consequences on the shear viscosity to energy density ratio of CFT plasmas, the possible existence of Boulware-Deser instabilities in Lovelock theory and the extent to which the AdS/CFT correspondence might be valid for arbitrary dimensions. © SISSA 2010.

Gomez F.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Iglesias A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Doblado F.S.,University of Seville
Physics in Medicine and Biology | Year: 2010

This work focuses on neutron monitoring at clinical linac facilities during high-energy modality radiotherapy treatments. Active in-room measurement of neutron fluence is a complex problem due to the pulsed nature of the fluence and the presence of high photon background, and only passive methods have been considered reliable until now. In this paper we present a new active method to perform real-time measurement of neutron production around a medical linac. The device readout is being investigated as an estimate of patient neutron dose exposure on each radiotherapy session. The new instrument was developed based on neutron interaction effects in microelectronic memory devices, in particular using neutron-sensitive SRAM devices. This paper is devoted to the description of the instrument and measurement techniques, presenting the results obtained together with their comparison and discussion. Measurements were performed in several standard clinical linac facilities, showing high reliability, being insensitive to the photon fluence and EM pulse present inside the radiotherapy room, and having detector readout statistical relative uncertainties of about 2% on measurement of neutron fluence produced by 1000 monitor units irradiation runs. © 2010 Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine.

Hollowood T.J.,University of Swansea | Miramontes J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Schmidtt D.M.,University of Swansea | Schmidtt D.M.,São Paulo State University
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

A general class of deformations of integrable sigma-models with symmetric space F/G target-spaces are found. These deformations involve defining the non-abelian T dual of the sigma-model and then replacing the coupling of the Lagrange multiplier imposing flatness with a gauged F/F WZW model. The original sigma-model is obtained in the limit of large level. The resulting deformed theories are shown to preserve both integrability and the equations-of-motion, but involve a deformation of the symplectic structure. It is shown that this deformed symplectic structure involves a linear combination of the original Poisson bracket and a generalization of the Faddeev-Reshetikhin Poisson bracket which we show can be re-expressed as two decoupled F current algebras. It is then shown that the deformation can be incorporated into the classical model of strings on (formula presented) via a generalization of the Pohlmeyer reduction. In this case, in the limit of large sigma-model coupling it is shown that the theory becomes the relativistic symmetric space sine-Gordon theory. These results point to the existence of a deformation of this kind for the full Green-Schwarz superstring on AdS5 × S5. © 2014, The Author(s).

Hollowood T.J.,University of Swansea | Miramontesb J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2010

The motion of strings on symmetric space target spaces underlies the inte- grability of the AdS/CFT correspondence. Although these theories, whose excitations are giant magnons, are non-relativistic they are classically equivalent, via the Polhmeyer reduc- tion, to a relativistic integrable field theory known as a symmetric space sine-Gordon theory. These theories can be formulated as integrable deformations of gauged WZW models. In this work we consider the class of symmetric spaces CP n+1 and solve the corresponding generalized sine-Gordon theories at the quantum level by finding the exact spectrum of topological solitons, or kinks, and their S-matrix. The latter involves a trignometric solu- tion of the Yang-Baxer equation which exhibits a quantum group symmetry with a tower of states that is bounded, unlike for magnons, as a result of the quantum group deformation parameter q being a root of unity. We test the S-matrix by taking the semi-classical limit and comparing with the time delays for the scattering of classical solitons. We argue that the internal CP n-1 moduli space of collective coordinates of the solitons in the classical theory can be interpreted as a q-deformed fuzzy space in the quantum theory. We analyse the n = 1 case separately and provide a further test of the S-matrix conjecture in this case by calculating the central charge of the UV CFT using the thermodynamic Bethe Ansatz. © SISSA 2010.

Camanho X.O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Edelstein J.D.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sanchez de Santos J.M.,University of Santiago de Compostela
General Relativity and Gravitation | Year: 2014

Lovelock theory is the natural extension of general relativity to higher dimensions. It can be also thought of as a toy model for ghost-free higher curvature corrections in gravitational theories. It admits a family of AdS vacua, which provides an appealing arena to explore different holographic aspects in a broader setup within the context of the AdS/CFT correspondence. We will elaborate on these features and review previous work concerning the constraints that Lovelock theory entails on the CFT parameters when imposing conditions like unitarity, positivity of the energy or causality. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Gutierrez E.,University of Santiago de Compostela
International Journal of Eating Disorders | Year: 2013

Activity-based anorexia (ABA) is an analogous animal model of anorexia nervosa where food-restricted rats develop excessive running activity when given free access to a running wheel; their body weight sharply decreases, and finally self-starvation and death ensue unless animals are removed from the experimental conditions. The parallel of this animal model with major signs in the human disorder has been the focus of much attention from researchers and clinicians as a platform for translational research. The paper reviews the historical antecedents of ABA, research characterizing its occurrence, and its main limitations and strengths as a model of AN. As a symptomatic model of AN, the ABA model can provide clinicians with innovative and alternative routes for improving the treatment of AN. © 2013 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. (Int J Eat Disord 2013) Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Elander D.,Tata Institute of Fundamental Research | Gaillard J.,University of Swansea | Nunezb C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Piaib M.,Max Planck Institute for Physics
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2011

We construct explicitly a new class of backgrounds in type-IIB supergravity which generalize the baryonic branch of Klebanov-Strassler. We apply a solution-generating technique that, starting from a large class of solutions of the wrapped-D5 system, yields the new solutions, and then proceed to study in detail their properties, both in the IR and in the UV. We propose a simple intuitive field theory interpretation of the rotation procedure and of the meaning of our new solutions within the Papadopoulos-Tseytlin ansatz, in particular in relation to the duality cascade in the Klebanov-Strassler solution. The presence in the field theory of different VEVs for operators of dimensions 2, 3 and 6 suggests that this is an important step towards the construction of the string dual of a genuinely multi-scale (strongly coupled) dynamical model. © SISSA 2011.

Pardo V.,University of California at Davis | Pardo V.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Pickett W.E.,University of California at Davis
Physical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics | Year: 2010

Multilayer (TiO2)m / (VO2)n nanostructures (d1 - d0 interfaces with no polar discontinuity) show a metal-insulator transition with respect to the VO 2 layer thickness in first-principles calculations. For n≥5 layers, the system becomes metallic, while being insulating for n=1 and 2. The metal-insulator transition occurs through a semi-Dirac point phase for n=3 and 4, in which the Fermi surface is pointlike and the electrons behave as massless along the zone diagonal in k space and as massive fermions along the perpendicular direction. We provide an analysis of the evolution of the electronic structure through this unprecedented insulator-to-metal transition, and identify it as resulting from quantum confinement producing a nonintuitive orbital ordering on the V d1 ions, rather than being a specific oxide interface effect. Spin-orbit coupling does not destroy the semi-Dirac point for the calculated ground state, where the spins are aligned along the rutile c axis, but it does open a substantial gap if the spins lie in the basal plane. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Pardo V.,University of California at Davis | Pardo V.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Pickett W.E.,University of California at Davis
Physical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics | Year: 2010

The (SrTiO3) m / (SrVO3) n d0 - d1 multilayer system is studied with first-principles methods through the observed insulator-to-metal transition with increasing thickness of the SrVO3 layer. When correlation effects with reasonable magnitude are included, crystal-field splittings from the structural relaxations together with spin-orbit coupling (SOC) determines the behavior of the electronic and magnetic structures. These confined slabs of SrVO3 prefer Qorb = (π,π) orbital ordering of ℓz =0 and ℓz =-1 (jz =- 1/2) orbitals within the plane, accompanied by Qspin = (0,0) spin order (ferromagnetic alignment). The result is a SOC-driven ferromagnetic Mott insulator. The orbital moment of 0.75 μB strongly compensates the spin moment on the ℓz =-1 sublattice. The insulator-metal transition for n=1→5 (occurring between n=4 and n=5) is reproduced. Unlike in the isoelectronic d0 - d 1 TiO2 / VO2 (rutile structure) system and in spite of some similarities in orbital ordering, no semi-Dirac point is encountered but the insulator-to-metal transition occurs through a different type of unusual phase. For n=5 this system is very near (or at) a unique semimetallic state in which the Fermi energy is topologically determined and the Fermi surface consists of identical electron and hole Fermi circles centered at k=0. The dispersion consists of what can be regarded as a continuum of radially directed Dirac points, forming a "Dirac circle." © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Camanho X.O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Edelstein J.D.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Classical and Quantum Gravity | Year: 2013

We revisit the study of (A)dS black holes in Lovelock theories. We present a new tool that allows to attack this problem in full generality. In analyzing maximally symmetric Lovelock black holes with non-planar horizon topologies, many distinctive and interesting features are observed. Among them, the existence of maximally symmetric vacua does not support black holes in vast regions of the space of gravitational couplings, multi-horizon black holes and branches of solutions that suggest the existence of a rich diagram of phase transitions. The appearance of naked singularities seems unavoidable in some cases, raising the question about the fate of the cosmic censorship conjecture in these theories. There is a preferred branch of solutions for planar black holes, as well as for non-planar black holes with high enough mass or temperature. Our study clarifies the role of all branches of solutions, including asymptotically dS black holes, and whether they should be considered when studying these theories in the context of AdS/CFT. © 2013 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Hoare B.,Imperial College London | Hollowood T.J.,University of Swansea | Miramontesc J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2012

The investigation of the q deformation of the S-matrix for excitations on the string world sheet in AdS 5×S 5 is continued. We argue that due to the lack of Lorentz invariance the situation is more subtle than in a relativistic theory in that the nature of bound states depends on their momentum. At low enough momentum |p| < E the bound states transform in the anti-symmetric representation of the super-algebra symmetry and become the solitons of the Pohlmeyer reduced theory in the relativistic limit. At a critical momentum |p| = E they become marginally unstable, and at higher momenta the stable bound states are in the symmetric representation and become the familiar magnons in the string limit as q → 1. This subtlety fixes a problem involving the consistency of crossing symmetry with the relativistic limit found in earlier work. With mirror kinematics, obtained after a double Wick rotation, the bound state structure is simpler and there are no marginally unstable bound states. © SISSA 2012.

Hoare B.,Imperial College London | J. Hollowood T.,University of Swansea | Miramontes J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2012

A set of four factorizable non-relativistic S-matrices for a multiplet of fundamental particles are defined based on the R-matrix of the quantum group deformation of the centrally extended superalgebra su(2j2). The S-matrices are a function of two independent couplings g and q = e iπ=k. The main result is to find the scalar factor, or dressing phase, which ensures that the unitarity and crossing equations are satisfied. For generic (g; k), the S-matrices are branched functions on a product of rapidity tori. In the limit k → ∞, one of them is identified with the S-matrix describing the magnon excitations on the string world sheet in AdS 5×S 5, while another is the mirror S-matrix that is needed for the TBA. In the g → ∞ limit, the rapidity torus degenerates, the branch points disappear and the S-matrices become meromorphic functions, as required by relativistic S-matrix theory. However, it is only the mirror S-matrix which satisfies the correct relativistic crossing equation. The mirror S-matrix in the relativistic limit is then closely related to that of the semi-symmetric space sine-Gordon theory obtained from the string theory by the Pohlmeyer reduction, but has anti-symmetric rather than symmetric bound states. The interpolating S-matrix realizes at the quantum level the fact that at the classical level the two theories correspond to difierent limits of a one-parameter family of symplectic structures of the same integrable system. © SISSA 2012.

Hollowood T.J.,University of Swansea | Miramontes J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Schmidtt D.M.,University of Swansea | Schmidtt D.M.,São Paulo State University
Journal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical | Year: 2014

The S-matrix on the world-sheet theory of the string in AdS has previously been shown to admit a deformation where the symmetry algebra is replaced by the associated quantum group. The case where q is real has been identified as a particular deformation of the Green-Schwarz sigma model. An interpretation of the case with q a root of unity has, until now, been lacking. We show that the Green-Schwarz sigma model admits a discrete deformation which can be viewed as a rather simple deformation of the gauged WZW model, where . The deformation parameter q is then a kth root of unity where k is the level. The deformed theory has the same equations-of-motion as the Green-Schwarz sigma model but has a different symplectic structure. We show that the resulting theory is integrable and has just the right amount of kappa-symmetries that appear as a remnant of the fermionic part of the original gauge symmetry. This points to the existence of a fully consistent deformed string background. © 2014 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Le Rouzic A.,French National Center for Scientific Research | Alvarez-Castro J.M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Hansen T.F.,University of Oslo
Evolutionary Biology | Year: 2013

Using a multilinear model of epistasis we explore the evolution of canalization (reduced mutational effects) and evolvability (levels of additive genetic variance) under different forms of stabilizing and fluctuating selection. We show that the total selection acting on an allele can be divided into a component deriving from adaptation of the trait mean, a component of canalizing selection favoring alleles that epistatically reduce the effects of other allele substitutions, and a component of conservative selection disfavoring rare alleles. While canalizing selection operates in both stable and fluctuating environments, it may not typically maximize canalization, because it gets less efficient with increasing canalization, and reaches a balance with drift, mutation and indirect selection. Fluctuating selection leads to less canalized equilibria than stabilizing selection of comparable strength, because canalization then becomes influenced by erratic correlated responses to shifting trait adaptation. We conclude that epistatic systems under bounded fluctuating selection will become less canalized than under stabilizing selection and may support moderately increased evolvability if the amplitude of fluctuations is large, but canalization is still stronger and evolvability lower than expected under neutral evolution or under patterns of selection that shift the trait in directions of positive (reinforcing) epistasis. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Zimmer R.,ImmuPharma | Scherbarth H.R.,Hospital Interzonal General Of Agudos Dr Oscar Alende | Rillo O.L.,Hospital Sirio Libanes | Gomez-Reino J.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Muller S.,French National Center for Scientific Research
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2013

Objectives: To evaluate treatment with the peptidebased agent, Lupuzor, in a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled study of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus. Methods: Patients who met ≥4 of the American College of Rheumatology criteria, had a score of ≥6 on the Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Disease Activity Index 2000 (SLEDAI-2K) and did not have an A score on the British Isles Lupus Assessment Group (BILAG)-2004 scale were eligible. 149 intention-to-treat (ITT) patients were randomly assigned to receive Lupuzor (200 μg) subcutaneously every 4 weeks (n=49; group 1) or every 2 weeks (n=51; group 2) or placebo (n=49; group 3) in addition to standard of care (SOC). A target population (136 ITT patients) consisting of patients having a clinical SLEDAI score ≥6 at week 0 was considered. The clinical SLEDAI score is the SLEDAI-2K score obtained by omitting low complement and increased DNA binding components. Results: In the ITT overall population, 53.1% in group 1 ( p=0.048), 45.1% in group 2 (p=0.18) and 36.2% in the placebo group achieved an SLE Responder Index (SRI) response at week 12. In the target population, the results were more impressive: 61.9% in group 1 (p=0.016), 48.0% in group 2 (p=0.18) and 38.6% in the placebo group achieved an SRI response at week 12. An interim analysis including 114 patients from the target population demonstrated an even better efficacy (according to SLEDAI score) in group 1 compared with placebo (67.6% vs 41.5% (p<0.025) at week 12 and 84.2% vs 45.8% (p<0.025) at week 24). The most common adverse event was a mild injection-site erythema. Conclusions: Lupuzor/200 mg given three times at 4-week intervals during 12 weeks in addition to SOC is efficacious and generally well tolerated.

Martinez M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Ryblewski R.,Polish Academy of Sciences | Strickland M.,Gettysburg College | Strickland M.,Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies
Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics | Year: 2012

We present results of the application of the anisotropic hydrodynamics (aHydro) framework to (2+1)-dimensional boost-invariant systems. The necessary aHydro dynamical equations are derived by taking moments of the Boltzmann equation using a momentum-space anisotropic one-particle distribution function. We present a derivation of the necessary equations and then proceed to numerical solutions of the resulting partial differential equations using both realistic smooth Glauber initial conditions and fluctuating Monte Carlo Glauber initial conditions. For this purpose we have developed two numerical implementations: one that is based on straightforward integration of the resulting partial differential equations supplemented by a two-dimensional weighted Lax-Friedrichs smoothing in the case of fluctuating initial conditions and another that is based on the application of the Kurganov-Tadmor central scheme. For our final results we compute the collective flow of the matter via the laboratory-frame energy-momentum tensor eccentricity as a function of the assumed shear viscosity-to-entropy ratio, proper time, and impact parameter. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Aldegunde M.,University of Swansea | Garcia-Loureiro A.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Kalna K.,University of Swansea
IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices | Year: 2013

A 3D ensemble Monte Carlo device simulation tool with quantum corrections based on the tetrahedral decomposition of a simulation domain has been developed for the modeling of electron transport in nonplanar nano-MOSFETs. This 3D tool includes a presimulation drift-diffusion transport model which can also be used separately. A discretization by finite element method can accurately describe a 3D device geometry and speed up complex 3D simulations. The quantum corrections are included via a density gradient approach and the interface roughness via Ando's model. ID - VG characteristics of a 25-nm gate length Si silicon-on-insulator (SOI) FinFET, selected as an application example, shows an excellent agreement with experimental data including the subthreshold slope. We show that the device on-current for a [110] channel orientation could be improved by about 15% for a [100] channel orientation. The role of quantization of energy levels affecting the distribution of electron density at sidewalls of the SOI FinFET is found to be different at low (0.05 V) and high (1.0 V) gate biases. © 2013 IEEE.

The European flat oyster, has been part of the human diet for many centuries. High mortality episodes and overfishing decimated the populations of O.edulis in Europe through the first half of the XXth century. Then, two diseases (due to Marteilia refringens and Bonamia ostreae) spread in the early 1970s and 1980s, drastically reducing the production. Despite new management practices, and intensive repletion programmes, the production of O. edulis has remained low since that time. The recovery of European flat oyster production is seen as an important opportunity for the shellfish industry in Europe. Thus this project proposal aims to attain a clear competitive advantage for a number of SME AGs and their members for different reasons: 1st- Chance to diversify production (risk management) 2nd- High market value of the product. 3rd- Environmental positive effects of fostering aquaculture activities based on native species 4rd-Biotechnology provides tools and procedures to face the oyster industry problems that were not available until recently A total of five Shellfish Producer Associations from four different Member States and three SMEs in major oyster production countries in Europe, concerned about the above mentioned issues and being aware of recent scientific progress in selective breeding programmes for bonamiosis tolerance, decided to work together with the common general objective of facing the challenge of establishing the scientific and technical bases, procedures and standards that allow the recovery of the O. edulis production, through development of strategies to tackle the main constraint, bonamiosis . To successfully achieve this goal those European Research Centres and Universities which have mainly contributed to scientific progress on O. edulis recovery and selective breeding programmes for bonamiosis resistance, will be hired by the SM-AGs and SMEs involved in this OYSTERECOVER proposal to carry out the relevant research.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE-2007-2-4-01;KBBE-2007-2-4-02 | Award Amount: 8.89M | Year: 2008

Flavouring, Additive and Food Contact Material Exposure Task: FACET FACET will deliver to the European Community a sustainable surveillance system, to estimate target food chemical intake. The project will consist of three main groupings of its 20 partners. The Chemicals group will prioritise the flavourings, additives and food contact materials for investigation and the food categories applicable to them. The Food group will take those food categories and will establish food ingredient occurrence data through the primary collection of food packaging material and the recording of all food ingredients in purchased foods. It will also create tired food consumption databases linked to the target food categories. In addition, where intake data is limited, models of regional diets will be developed. A group on chemical concentration will provide data on the concentration of target chemicals in target food groups. Databases on food intake, food chemical occurrence and food chemical concentration will be linked in algorithms which will be converted into computer code for the estimation of probabilistic exposure to target food chemical intake.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: FoF-09-2015 | Award Amount: 11.42M | Year: 2015

Fortissimo 2 will drive the uptake of advanced modelling, simulation and data analytics by European engineering and manufacturing SMEs and mid-caps. Such an uptake will deliver improved design processes, better products and services, and improved competitiveness. For the European Union as a whole this means improved employment opportunities and economic growth. The importance of advanced ICT to the competitiveness of both large and small companies in the engineering and manufacturing domain is well established. Despite early successes in this area, there are still many barriers to the uptake of such solutions, not least of which are the initial cost and complexity of adoption, particularly in the context of challenging trading conditions. This proposal targets the ICT Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs (I4MS) action line (Phase 2) and builds on Phase 1 of that initiative. Phase 2 addresses the adoption of next generation ICT advances in the manufacturing domain. At the core of Fortissimo 2 are three tranches of Application Experiments (~35 in total). An initial set is included in this proposal and two further sets will be obtained through Open Calls for proposals. These experiments will be driven by the requirements of first-time users (predominately SMEs) and will bring together actors from across the value chain, from cycle providers to domain experts via the Fortissimo Marketplace. This will enable innovative solutions to manufacturing challenges, leading to new and improved design processes, products and services. A key feature of Fortissimo 2 will be the adaption of the Marketplace to meet the needs of end-users. It will offer a responsive and reliable service to companies which want to access HPC and Big resources and expertise. Fortissimo 2 initially involves 732 months of effort, a total cost of 11.1m and EC funding of 10m over a duration of three years, commensurate with achieving its ambitious goals.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: NMP-21-2014 | Award Amount: 9.18M | Year: 2015

Currently there is a lack of methodologies for the conservation of modern and contemporary artworks, many of which will not be accessible in very short time due to extremely fast degradation processes. The challenge of NANORESTART (NANOmaterials for the REStoration of works of ART) will be to address this issue within a new framework with respect to the state of the art of conservation science. NANORESTART is devoted to the development of nanomaterials to ensure long term protection and security of modern/contemporary cultural heritage, taking into account environmental and human risks, feasibility and materials costs. The market for conservation of this heritage is estimated at some 5 billion per year, and could increase by a significant factor in the next years due to the wider use of nanomaterials. The new tools and materials developed will represent a breakthrough in cultural heritage and conservation science and will focus on: (i) tools for controlled cleaning, such as highly-retentive gels for the confinement of enzymes and nanostructured fluids based on green surfactants; (ii) the strengthening and protection of surfaces by using nanocontainers, nanoparticles and supramolecular systems/assemblies; (iii) nanostructured substrates and sensors for enhanced molecules detection; (iv) evaluation of the environmental impact and the development of security measures for long lasting conservation of cultural heritage. Within the project the industrial scalability of the developed materials will be demonstrated. NANORESTART gathers centres of excellence in the field of synthesis and characterization of nanomaterials, world leading chemical Industries and SMEs operating in R&D, and International and European centres for conservation, education and museums. Such centres will assess the new materials on modern/contemporary artefacts in urgent need of conservation, and disseminate the knowledge and the new nanomaterials among conservators on a worldwide perspective.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: NMP-2007-2.3-1 | Award Amount: 11.09M | Year: 2008

The main driving idea of the project is the creation of conceptually new type of scaffolds able to be manipulated in situ by means of magnetic forces. This approach is expected to generate scaffolds with such characteristics as multiple use and possibly multipurpose delivery in order to repair large bone defects and ostheocondral lesions in the articular surface of the skeletal system. The major limitations of the scaffolds for bone and cartilage regeneration nowadays available in the market are related to the difficulties in controlling cell differentiation and angiogenesis processes and to obtain stable scaffold implantation in the pathological site. . . Several attempts have been performed over the last years in order to provide scaffolds for tissue engineering, but nowadays there is no way to grant that tissue regeneration take place in the pathological site. The provision in vivo of the scaffold with staminal cells or /and growth factors in order to drive the tissue differentiation process and parallel angiogenesis represents nowadays one of most challenging requests [Ref. Nanomedicine roadmap]. The Consortium aims to elaborate, investigate and fabricate new kind of scaffolds magnetic scaffolds (MagS) - characterized by strongly enhanced control and efficiency of the tissue regeneration and angiogenic processes. The magnetic moment of the scaffolds enables them with a fascinating possibility of being continuously controlled and reloaded from external supervising center with all needed scaffold materials and various active factors (AF). Such a magnetic scaffold can be imagined as a fixed station that offers a long-living assistance to the tissue engineering, providing thus a unique possibility to adjust the scaffold activity to the personal needs of the patient.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2013-ITN | Award Amount: 3.90M | Year: 2014

In the Early Modern Age (16th-17th centuries) the construction of ocean-going ships was paramount to the development of cultural encounters in what became the Age of Discovery and European expansion. In the case of the Iberian Empires, the establishment of new trade routes brought up the need for armed merchantmen, galleons and smaller vessels, placing unprecedented demands on Iberian forests for the supply of construction timber. Forestry and sea power became inextricably linked, creating new geopolitical tensions, alliances and forest regulations. Key questions in this context are: could Iberian forest resources sustain the increasing demand of sound timber, or was the wood imported from elsewhere? If so, how were the trade networks organized? And did the lack of raw material force the technological changes occurred in shipbuilding in the 16th century, or were they a result of exchange between Mediterranean and Atlantic shipbuilding traditions? This project will address these questions through a multidisciplinary and innovative training research program to improve the understanding of our historical past, our cultural heritage, and our knowledge of the use of resources for shipbuilding. The prerequisite for such approach is combining knowledge derived from Humanities and Life Sciences. The aims of the project are: i) to consolidate a research line combining historical research, underwater archaeology, GIS and wood provenancing methods (dendrochronology, wood anatomy and geo/dendrochemistry); ii) to increase the background and experience of trainees in the different research areas, by engaging the fellows in training courses and workshops aimed at developing their scientific, communication, and management skills; and iii) to develop their transferable skills for future careers in academia or the private sector whilst advancing the research fields through the integration of research tools, development of reference datasets and new discoveries.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: WATER-5c-2015 | Award Amount: 3.57M | Year: 2016

The WHO estimates that in 2015 in Africa ~156 million people relied on untreated sources for their drinking water. WATERSPOUTT will design, develop, pilot and field-test a range of, sustainable point-of-use solar disinfection (SODIS) technologies that will provide affordable access to safe water to remote and vulnerable communities in Africa and elsewhere. These novel large-volume water treatment SODIS technologies will be developed in collaboration and consultation with the end-users, and include: 1. HARVESTED RAINWATER SODIS SYSTEMS for domestic and community use. (South Africa, Uganda). 2. TRANSPARENT 20L SODIS JERRYCANS. (Ethiopia) 3. COMBINED 20L SODIS/CERAMIC POT FILTRATION SYSTEMS. (Malawi) These are novel technologies that will create employment and economic benefits for citizens in both the EU and resource-poor nations. WATERSPOUTT will use social science strategies to: a. Build integrated understanding of the social, political & economic context of water use & needs of specific communities. b. Examine the effect of gender relations on uptake of SODIS technologies. c. Explore the relevant governance practices and decision-making capacity at local, national and international level that impact upon the use of integrated solar technologies for point-of-use drinking water treatment. d. Determine the feasibility & challenges faced at household, community, regional and national level for the adoption of integrated solar technologies for point-of-use drinking water treatment. WATERSPOUTT will transform access to safe drinking water through integrated social sciences, education & solar technologies, thus improving health, survival, societal well-being & economic growth in African developing countries. These goals will be achieved by completing health impact studies of these technologies among end-user communities in Africa. Many of the consortium team have worked for more than 15 years on SODIS research in collaboration with African partners.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: HEALTH.2010.2.1.1-2 | Award Amount: 2.24M | Year: 2010

High-throughput next-generation DNA sequencing technologies allow investigators to sequence entire human genomes at an affordable price and within a short time frame. The correct interpretation, storage, and dissemination of the large amount of produced genomics data generate major challenges. Tackling these challenges requires extensive exchange of data, information and knowledge between medical scientists, sequencing centres, bioinformatics networks and industry at the European level. The GEUVADIS (genetic European variation in disease) Consortium aims at developing standards in quality control and assessment of sequence data, models for data storage, exchange and access, as well as standards for the handling, analysis and interpretation of sequencing data and other functional genomics datasets, standards for the biological and medical interpretation of sequence data and in particular rare variants for monogenic and common disorders, and finally standards for the ethics of phenotype prediction from sequence variation. The partners are all involved in international sequencing initiatives (1000 GP, ICGC), EU and other international projects (ENGAGE, GEN2PHEN, ENCODE, TECHGENE ), biobanking activities (BBMRI), data sharing initiatives (ELIXIR), and the European Sequencing and Genotyping Infrastructure (ESGI), ensuring tight collaborations. The Consortium will undertake pilot sequencing projects on selected samples from three medical fields (cardiovascular, neurological and metabolic), using RNA (RNASeq) and DNA (exonSeq) sequencing. The analysis of such samples will allow the consortium to set up standards in operating procedures and biological/medical interpretation of sequence data in relation to clinical phenotypes. The consortium will bring together the knowledge and resources on medical genome sequencing at a European level and allow researchers to develop and test new hypotheses on the genetic basis of disease.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: ENERGY.2012.8.8.1 | Award Amount: 4.49M | Year: 2013

Today climate change causes serious problems to the societies worldwide and Europe starts to feel its consequences. At the same time European community is facing economical problems. One of the main producers of greenhouse gases is the non sustainable energy production and use. Therefore there is an urgent need to reduce energy use in most cost effective way. PLEEC will gather cities with innovative planning and ambitious energy saving goals. It will identify technology, citizens behaviors and structure driven efficiency potentials within urban planning and key city aspects. PLEEC will assess the status of energy efficiency and energy flows in the participating European middle size cities. It will improve understanding of basic conditions for energy efficiency in the cities through joint activities between city planners and researchers on technology, citizens behavior and structures. By finding the optimal mix of all energy efficiency measures the model for strategic sustainable planning will be created together with the action plans for implementation and management. The model and the action plans will address key aspects relevant for the whole city. They will be supported by the public authorities on the highest political levels. Analysis of time line, the costs and pay-back periods will be done based on different regulatory and market conditions of the participating cities. The model will guide the cities to find the most cost effective implementation of the EU SET-Plan goals to reduce energy use in EU by 20% till 2020.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: SiS.2007-;SiS-2007- | Award Amount: 875.08K | Year: 2008

The key concept of this project is inquiry-based teaching of secondary school science. Research and development done in Europe in the area of inquiry-based science teaching (IBST) is abundant, however, the knowledge is spread and indistinct, and thereby not utilised to its full potential by teachers and educators throughout Europe. The project aims to gather, exchange, develop and disseminate ideas of good practices in IBST. The overall aim of Mind the Gap is to stimulate a more engaging and interesting science teaching based on principles of IBST so that more young people in general, and girls in particular, wish to pursue educations and careers in science and technology. We argue that if the science teaching shall succeed in meeting young people in their interests and concerns, we will need to examine and connect The gap between theory and practice in inquiry based science The gap between teaching and learning The gap between research, policy and practice The gap between educational policies and in-service training The gap between instructional designs and preferable tools The gap between cognitive demands and available tools The gap between the culture of science and marginalized groups (including girls) The Mind the Gap project and network will focus on such gaps and aim to bridge them across different European contexts (Norway, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, United Kingdom, Spain, and France). The project design involves six work packages (WPs), including one management WP, each lead from different Europeans countries with relevant expertise. One of the WPs provides an overall background for IBST, three WPs go more in-depth into three specific themes (scientific literacy, ICT, and communication and argumentation). And the last WP will try out models for disseminating knowledge and ideas for best practice of IBST through teacher professional development (including SINUS) in different countries and contexts.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: INFRAIA-1-2014-2015 | Award Amount: 10.00M | Year: 2016

ENSAR2 is the integrating activity for European nuclear scientists who are performing research in three of the major subfields defined by NuPECC: Nuclear Structure and Dynamics, Nuclear Astrophysics and Nuclear Physics Tools and Applications. It proposes an optimised ensemble of Networking (NAs), Joint Research (JRAs) and Transnational Access Activities (TAs), which will ensure qualitative and quantitative improvement of the access provided by the current ten infrastructures, which are at the core of this proposal. The novel and innovative developments that will be achieved by the RTD activities will also assure state-of-the-art technology needed for the new large-scale projects. Our community of nuclear scientists profits from the diverse range of world-class research infrastructures all over Europe that can supply different ion beams and energies and, with ELI-NP, high-intensity gamma-ray beams up to 20 MeV. We have made great effort to make the most efficient use of these facilities by developing the most advanced and novel equipment needed to pursue their excellent scientific programmes and applying state-of-the-art developments to other fields and to benefit humanity (e.g. archaeology, medical imaging). Together with multidisciplinary and application-oriented research at the facilities, these activities ensure a high-level socio-economic impact. To enhance the access to these facilities, the community has defined a number of JRAs, using as main criterion scientific and technical promise. These activities deal with novel and innovative technologies to improve the operation of the facilities. The NAs of ENSAR2 have been set-up with specific actions to strengthen the communities coherence around certain resarch topics and to ensure a broad dissemination of results and stimulate multidisciplinary, application-oriented research and innovation at the Research Infrastructures.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: NMP.2011.1.2-2 | Award Amount: 10.76M | Year: 2012

Despite the increasing number of macromolecules with potential impact in the treatment of devastating systemic diseases, these therapies have failed to deliver on their expectations because they cannot be administered in the fashion which is most cost efficient and has the highest patient compliance: the oral route. The availability of an oral form of administration could lead to a great improvement of classical therapies and it would also make a high number of new therapies feasible. To make this happen, the final objective of Trans-INT is to design nanocarriers specifically adapted to deal with the gastrointestinal ecosystem and use them for the development of new oral nanomedicines for diseases with high socioeconomic impact (i.e. metabolic diseases, pain medication). The concept behind TRANS-INT is the rational design of oral nanomedicines based on safety, mechanistic, bioengineering (multifunctional nanocarriers: high payload, drug protection, efficient drug transport, controlled release) and pharmaceutical technology criteria (scalable technology and stability). The project will start with nanocarrier platforms on which the partners have IPR and freedom to operate: nanocapsules, nanoparticles, micelles made of combinations of lipids, polypeptides and polysaccharides, continue with the optimization and redefinition of selected nanocarriers. It is expected to end with (i) at least one oral nanocarrier prototype with a comprehensive GLP-tox package, which could be applied for the delivery of a high number of peptide molecules, (ii) at least one nanomedicine fulfilling target product profile criteria, with a comprehensive preclinical evaluation package, (iii) substantial integrative knowledge on the feasibility and potential of oral nanocarriers and nanopharmaceuticals. TRANS-INT is expected to have a great impact no only from the new therapies/patients perspective but also from the innovation and EU industrial development perspective.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME | Phase: SME-1 | Award Amount: 1.47M | Year: 2011

The project aims to continue with some exciting work following up a development in delivering active agents to bivalve molluscs through micro-encapsulation. The early work showed that bacteria with a potential in vitro to break down some algal toxins could be effectively delivered to the gut of the bivalve. The size and nature of the micro-capsule (bead) was shown to be key. The SMEs and Other industry partners in the consortium have assempled a group of leading researchers in the field to develop this work , further, and to look into not only active detoxification but more effective depuration using pro-biotics. The group alsp plan to investigate the use of the beads as carriers of active agents to aid an immunostimulant response against attack by the Bonamia parasite on European (flat) Oysters.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2012.3.2-01 | Award Amount: 13.29M | Year: 2012

The PharmaSea project focuses on obstacles in marine biodiscovery research, development and commercialization and brings together a broad interdisciplinary team of academic and industry researchers and specialists to address and overcome these. The partners are ideally placed to demonstrate how to widen the bottlenecks and increase the flow of ideas and products derived from the marine microbiome towards a greater number of successes in a larger number of application areas. Despite the tremendous potential of marine biodiscovery, exploitation, particularly at a commercial scale, has been hampered by a number of constraints. These relate to access (physical and legal), genetics of the organisms, compound isolation, structure elucidation, early reliable validation of biological activity and best mechanisms of flow-through into exploitation. PharmaSea will solve these chronic bottlenecks by developing essential actions beyond the state of the art and linking them with best practice and appropriate pragmatic approaches. The robust pipeline structure established within PharmaSea will process a wide genetic basis including marine microbial strain collections held by partners and new strain collections from extreme environments (deep, cold and hot vent habitats) to produce new products with desirable characteristics for development by the SME partners in three accessible market sectors, health (infection, inflammation, CNS diseases), personal care and nutrition. The global aim of PharmaSea is to produce two compounds at larger scale and advance them to pre-clinical evaluation. To address relevant challenges in marine biodiscovery related to policy and legal issues, PharmaSea will bring together practitioners, legal experts, policy advisors/makers and other stakeholders, focusing on the feasibility of harmonising, aligning and complementing current legal frameworks with recommendations and ready to use solutions tailored to marine biodiscovery.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: RUR-10-2016-2017 | Award Amount: 2.00M | Year: 2017

Agroforestry (AF) is the practice of deliberately integrating woody vegetation (trees or shrubs) with crop and/or animal systems to benefit from the resulting ecological and economic interactions. Research activities developed by AFINET partners indicates that appropriate application of AF principles and practices is a key avenue to help the European Union to achieve more sustainable methods of food and fibre production, producing both profits for farmers and environmental benefits. However up to now exists a lack of AF knowledge among end-users that prevent the correct implementation of these practices. In this sense AFINET will act at EU level in order to take up research results into agricultural practice, improving knowledge exchange between scientists and practitioners on AF activities, with a special focus on silvoarable and silvopastoral systems design, management, and production and profitability. To achieve this objective AFINET consortium proposes an innovative methodology based on: (i) The creation of a EU reservoir of scientific and practical knowledge of AF with an end-user-friendly access (the Knowledge Cloud). (ii) The creation of a European Interregional network (composed of Regional Agroforestry Innovation Networks - RAINs) considering a multi-actor approach (including farmers, policy makers, advisory services, extension services, etc.), and articulated through the figure of the Innovation Broker. These RAINs groups will be interconnected in nine strategic regions of Europe from Spain, UK, Belgium, Portugal, Italy, Hungary, Poland, France and Finland, representing different climatic, geographical, social, and cultural conditions at European level. In addition, to create a greater user acceptance of the collected solutions and an intensive dissemination to end-users, AFINET will be linked to other networks, initiatives and policy instruments at regional, national and European level with a specific focus on the EIP-AGRI implementation.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: Fission-2009-2.3.2 | Award Amount: 5.96M | Year: 2010

According to the recent publications of the European Technological Platform for a Sustainable Nuclear Energy (SNETP) (Vision report and Strategic Research Agenda) the sustainability require the combination of the present LWR, future Advanced Fast reactors and the waste minimization in closed cycles with Partitioning and Transmutation. To implement these new nuclear systems and their fuel cycles it is necessary to improve the accuracy, uncertainties and validation of related nuclear data and models, required for those systems but also for the experimental and demonstration facilities involved in the their validation. The project will include new nuclear data measurements, dedicated benchmarks, based on integral experiments, and improved evaluation and modeling specifically oriented to obtain high precision nuclear data for the major actinides present in advanced reactor fuels, to reduce uncertainties in new isotopes in closed cycles with waste minimisation and to better assess the uncertainties and correlations in their evaluation.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME | Phase: SME-2011-1 | Award Amount: 1.80M | Year: 2012

Turbot (Scophthalmus maximus) is identified as one of the most promising candidates for marine aquaculture in Europe, with several characteristics that make it an interesting species for commercial growers and European consumers. The species has tremendous potential as an aquaculture species but many of its attributes are currently unexploited utilize. European production of turbot has been increasing during the last 20 years from about 100 to over 11000 metric tons. However, in order to expand the production beyond this level, new bio- and technological solutions are urgently needed. The biological and technological focus in the present project will be on improving the rearing environment, optimized slaughter methods and improved fish welfare and quality of the produced products. We also include a comprehensive assessment of the economic ramifications of the proposed optimized rearing. These measures are all aimed at improving productivity of the turbot farms leading to more cost effective production and better use of the resources involved. By addressing the whole value chain it is foreseen that the current proposal may lay the foundation for more cost-effective production of turbot in Europe. The approach of the project is multidisciplinary where the Project Consortium will work with those scientific and practical problems considered most important for future sustainable expansion by the SME proposers. This project brings together a balanced and integrated consortium of fish farmers and scientists, with wide project experience, in a number of interrelated disciplines; growth physiology, immunology/health, welfare, slaughter methods, quality aspects and fish economics; all concentrating on improving the culture of turbot. To increase the general applicability of the MAXIMUS proposal, the innovative slaughter methods will also be tested for sole (Solea solea, S. senegalensis). Sole is a promising European aquaculture species, cultured side-by-side with turbot facing similar technological challenges.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: KBBE.2010.3.2-04 | Award Amount: 3.89M | Year: 2011

Monitoring the quality of drinking water is of paramount importance for public health. Water is not a commercial product but a heritage that must be protected, defended and treated as such (Water Framework Directive 2000/60/EC). The threat of waterborne diseases in Europe will predictably increase in the future as the human population increases and as a result of globalization and migration from non-EU countries and of climate change. Development of efficient, sensitive, robust, rapid and inexpensive tests to monitor various aspects of water quality represents an essential milestone within the strategy for control and prevention of diseases caused by waterborne pathogens and by algal toxins. Traditional methods for the detection of waterborne pathogens, based on cultivation, biochemical characterisation and microscopic detection are laborious and time-consuming; molecular biological tools have now greatly enhanced our ability to investigate biodiversity by identifying species and to estimate gene flow and distribution of species in time and space. AQUA aims to design and develop a universal microarray chip for the high-throughput detection in water of known and emerging pathogens (bacteria, viruses, protozoa and cyanobacteria) and to assess the water quality monitoring the presence of select bioindicators (i.e. diatoms). A chip able to detect cyanobacterial toxins will also be developed. These innovative molecular tools should be amenable to automation so that they could be deployed on moorings for routine semi-continuous monitoring of water quality. AQUA also aims to identify cyanophages potentially capable of controlling and mitigating the periodical blooming of toxic cyanobacteria in drinking water reservoirs. Overall, these innovative and cost efficient technologies will reduce energy requirements and improve performance of water treatment, and allow rapid management response to new situations brought about by environmental (including climatic) changes.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: COH-2007-2.2-01-OMC-NET | Award Amount: 949.13K | Year: 2009

Radical changes in the global economy expose business sectors to major threats as well as to various new opportunities. Policy makers are required to target subsequent opportunities by enabling or promoting the business sector to take advantage of them. However, existing horizontal R&D policies focused on promoting R&D activity in individual firms are often lacking in this respect. Current and future scenarios require not only the design of new policies but also the adoption of a whole new type of policy process, namely the formulation of Targeted R&D policies. Such policies go beyond market failure approach to identify strategic priorities as well as analysing system failures and imperfections impeding their successful implementation.. The aim of the TARGET project is to design and develop a structured and valorized set of guidelines & recommendations, cumulating into a toolkit, for formulating and implementing targeted R&D policies, with a focus on the life science/biomed sector. The toolkit will address issues such as: the ability to define strategic priorities, to evaluate technological gaps, to identify the elements within the national/regional innovation system responsible of achieving the selected priorities (including the missing elements), to identify potential system failures, to formulate effective policies and to reach coordination among the relevant policy makers/ministries. A consortium consisting of 8 partners from 6 different countries is assembled to implement the project. The consortium brings together public bodies, and research institutes, whose research will provide a sound base for decision-making in science and policy. The TARGET project will stimulate a mutual learning process among the consortium partners for the identification of the proper mix between horizontal R&D policies and targeted ones.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP-SICA | Phase: SiS-2009- | Award Amount: 1.23M | Year: 2009

KidsINNscience will identify and promote innovative approaches for teaching and learning science, adapt and test them for implementation in mainstream schools and develop innovation strategies in all participating countries. The consortium proposes a collaborative project (specific international cooperation action (SICA)) for experts who work with and on new methods for science education. The overall objective of the project is to develop adaptive strategies to facilitate the innovation of science education in formal and informal settings. Strategies for innovating curricula and strategies for teaching and learning in science and technology will be analysed and compared among 8 different countries in Europe and 2 in Latin America. The role of gender and cultural diversity will explicitly be taken into account in all phases of the project. KidsINNscience proposes to adopt an adaptive strategy that enables participating countries to learn from each other and develop feasible innovation plans that fit the specific conditions of each of the countries. The project will deliver a long list of innovations from all participating countries, carry out effective pilots to contribute to a solid evidence base and formulate a set of criteria for innovation of teaching and learning of science. KidsINNscience will also make use of non-European educational settings in Brazil and Mexico in order to find new methods and strategies for science education to be adapted and used in all participating countries. The KidsINNscience consortium unites experienced partners from: -Universities and research institutions, who have been working on new methods in science education for many years (LSBU, RM3, IJS, UFRJ) -Research partners who are specified on innovative didactic models and new learning arrangements (UZH, FUB, SLO, AIE, USC, CINVESTAV ) The consortium reflects all required competencies to perform the proposed parts of KidsINNscience with the desired quality and expertise.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA-Infra | Phase: INFRA-2011-1.1.20. | Award Amount: 12.58M | Year: 2012

The Project promotes the access to five European Research Infrastructures, and it is structured into nine Networking Activities, plus the Management of the Consortium, and fourteen Joint Research Activities. The Project will profit of the success of the previous HadronPhysics project in FP6 and the current HadronPhysics2 in FP7, and originates from the initiative of more than 2.500 European scientists working in the field of hadron physics. Hadron physics deals with the study of strongly interacting particles, the hadrons. Hadrons are composed of quarks and gluons. Their interaction is described by Quantum Chromo Dynamics, the theory of the strong force. Hadrons form more complex systems, in particular atomic. Under extreme conditions of pressure and temperature, hadrons may loose their identity and dissolve into a new state of matter similar to the primordial matter of the early Universe. The Networking Activities are related to the organization of experimental and theoretical collaborative work concerning both ongoing activities at present Research Infrastructures and planned experiments at future facilities. In hadron physics the close interaction between experimentalists and theoreticians is of paramount importance. The Joint Research Activities concentrate on technological innovations for present and future experiments. Applications in material science, medicine, information, technology, etc., represent natural fall-outs. The main objective of this Integrating Activity is to optimize the use and development of the Research Infrastructures existing in Europe working in the field of hadron physics. The Project aims as well at structuring, on European scale, the way Research Infrastructures operate, and at fostering their joint development in terms of capacity and performance. The approach used is the bottom up approach, to respond to the needs of the scientific community in all fields of science and technology.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: EE-16-2014 | Award Amount: 1.73M | Year: 2015

Waste Water Treatment Plants (WWTPs) is one of the most expensive public industries in terms of energy requirements accounting for more than 1% of consumption of electricity in Europe. EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) 91/271/CEE made obligatory waste water treatment for cities and towns. Now within the EU-27, the total number of WWTPs is estimated as 22.558, for which we can estimate a total energy consumption of 15,021 GWh/year. Although most of the objectives of the WFD in relation to water protection have been achieved, most of these aging plants show unsustainable energy consumption and must be optimized to the maximum and renovated accordingly. However, in Europe there is no legislation, norms or standards to be followed, and as consequence, a gigantic opportunity for reducing the public electric expense remains unregulated. The main objective of ENERWATER is to develop, validate and disseminate an innovative standard methodology for continuously assessing, labelling and improving the overall energy performance of WWTPs. For that purpose a collaboration framework in the waste water treatment sector including research groups, SMEs, utilities, city councils, authorities and industry will be set up. ENERWATER will devote important efforts to ensure that the method is widely adopted. Subsequent objectives are to impulse dialogue towards the creation of a specific European legislation following the example of recently approved EU directives, to achieve EU energy reductions objectives for 2020, ensuring effluent water quality, environmental protection and compliance with the WFD. These actions should bring European Water Industry a competitive advantage in new products development and a faster access to markets by facilitating evidence of reduction therefore fostering adoption on new technologies.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-SA | Phase: SIS-2008- | Award Amount: 5.24M | Year: 2009

Helping teachers raise the quality of science teaching and its educational environment has the potential to increase student engagement, attainment, scientific literacy and science career choices. S-TEAM will achieve this by connecting existing science education research and teacher knowledge to teacher education. This task requires the power of coordinated action across a wide range of institutions and national contexts. The 26 partners and 15 nations engaged in S-TEAM have a unique opportunity to systematically integrate their knowledge of teaching, research and teacher education, and to adapt science education to the diverse needs of citizens and the economy in Europe, focusing on inquiry-based methods. These involve problem-solving, hands-on experimentation, authentic, student-led content and critical dialogue, but they require wider development of teacher skills and knowledge. Many teachers are already competent in these methods, and are thus the best source of learning for others. S-TEAM will achieve its aims by disseminating research on, and teachers' experiences of inquiry-based methods to existing and future science teachers. Its actions will involve listening to teachers, working with teacher educators and researchers, and providing support for better science education. This support will include workshops, training packages, video case-studies, teaching materials and publications. S-TEAM will involve not only teachers, but also teacher educators, researchers, students, parents and policymakers in dialogue, to ensure that this dissemination is effective. S-TEAM is sustainable since learning through teacher collaboration and education can be continually regenerated, but also necessary because science teacher education needs to be shared across Europe. By enabling teachers to deliver more efficient and efficacious learning, S-TEAM will improve the attitudes, motivation and learning of young people, including girls, in science education.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE-2007-2-4-06 | Award Amount: 7.90M | Year: 2009

Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) started, 20 years ago, a devastating health and food crisis throughout Europe. Classical BSE is now under control as a result of the meat and bone meal ban. However, tonsil analyses suggest that there may be an alarmingly high number of asymptomatic PrPSc positive cases. Transmission through blood transfusion is another important concern, as are recent atypical cases of BSE. Only a profound understanding of the molecular biology of prions will enable us to control them. Thus, to understand why BSE-contaminated food causes vCJD, we need to understand how prions get into food, what happens with them in the gut, how they reach the brain, and how they initiate the chain reaction rapidly leading to death. We have formulated 7 key questions: 1) How can we avoid a new BSE outbreak, or other possible future prion infection of livestock? 2) Why did decontamination of meat and bone meal fail; is there an effective way to decontaminate feedstuffs, soil etc? 3) What is the risk of humans being infected with each of the different prion strains known thus far? 4) Which are the best strategies to implement feasible prion eradication programs? 5) How can we develop a pre-clinical prion blood test? 6) How can we identify human cases with potential secondary transmission? And 7) What is the origin of atypical human CJD cases? We will search for decisive data on the structure of PrPSc, the molecular basis of strains and species barriers, the mechanism of prion conversion, the cell biology of PrPSc, the function of PrPC, and the mechanisms of PrP-associated pathology. This information will be translated into a better estimation of current exposure risk to humans from TSE, evaluation of current intervention strategies, and development of improved decontamination techniques and prion tests. With all this, we will be able to respond to the questions formulated and thus advise the EC on TSE policy for the protection of European consumers..

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: NMP-2008-1.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.86M | Year: 2009

The aim of this project is the assembly and the fabrication of a new generation of multifunctional nanostructures for performing combined hyperthermia and controlled drug release, specifically targeted to cancer cells. The magnetic nanocontainers we intend to develop can perform at the same time cell recognition, hyperthermia treatment, and, as a consequence of the heat and /or cell environment stimuli, the release of drug with high selectivity for ovarian carcinoma. These multifunctional tasks are made possible due to the inclusion of three main components: a) the magnetic nanoparticles, allowing detection by MRI, cancer treatment by hyperthermia and providing stimuli for drug release; b) the nanocontainers, which allow for drug encapsulation and protection from degradation, facilitate the release of the drug upon application of an external stimulus, such as heat, or an internal one, such as the acidic pH of the tumour cells; c) the antibody fragments attached to the surface of the magnetic nanocontainers to deliver them selectively to the ovarian cancer cells. The individual building blocks and their assemblies will be characterized with respect to physical, chemical, and biological features, followed by dissemination of the newly acquired knowledge. Cell culture experiments will allow to understand the performance of such nano-tools in vitro. Directed towards application in patients, in vivo animal studies will be carried out on the most successful magnetic nanocontainers. The objectives of this proposal cover a wide range of scientific fields, hence a truly interdisciplinary collaboration between chemists, physicists, and biologists is required. To this end, we propose a european network collaboration between academic partners, who will take care of the development of new solutions for nanofabrication, and industrial partners implied in the field of the proposed application who will evaluate/develop the materials and act as advisors for risks arising during the project.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA-Infra | Phase: INFRA-2010-1.1.32 | Award Amount: 11.03M | Year: 2010

ENSAR is the Integrating Activity of Nuclear Scientists from almost all European countries performing research in three of the major subfields of Nuclear Physics: Nuclear Structure, Nuclear Astrophysics and Applications of Nuclear Science. It proposes an optimised ensemble of Networking (NAs), Transnational Access and Joint Research Activities (JRAs), which will ensure qualitative and quantitative improvement of the access provided by the current seven infrastructures, which are at the core of this proposal. The novel and innovative developments that will be achieved by the RTD activities will also assure state-of-the-art technology needed for the new large-scale projects. Our community of nuclear scientists profits from the diverse range of world-class research infrastructures in Europe that can supply different ion beams and energies. We have made great efforts to make the most efficient use of these facilities by developing the most advanced and novel equipment needed to pursue their excellent scientific programmes and applying state-of-the-art developments in nuclear instrumentation to other research fields and to benefit humanity (e.g. archaeology, medical imaging). Together with multidisciplinary and application-oriented research at the facilities these activities ensure a high-level socioeconomic impact. To enhance the access to these facilities, the community has defined a number of JRAs, using as main criterion scientific and technical promise. These activities deal with novel and innovative technologies to improve the operation of the facilities. In addition, a key JRA aims at integrating the laboratories in Central and South-Eastern European countries with those elsewhere in Europe. The NAs of ENSAR have been set-up with specific actions to strengthen the communities coherence around certain research topics and to ensure a broad dissemination of results and stimulate multidisciplinary and application-oriented research at the Research Infrastructures.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE.2013.1.2-01 | Award Amount: 8.01M | Year: 2014

Agroforestry is the practice of deliberately integrating woody vegetation (trees or shrubs) with crop and/or animal systems to benefit from the resulting ecological and economic interactions. AGFORWARD (AGroFORestry that Will Advance Rural Development) is a four-year project, developed by 23 organisations at the forefront of agroforestry research, practice and promotion in Europe, with the goal of promoting appropriate agroforestry practices that advance sustainable rural development. The project will i) increase our understanding of existing, and new extensive and intensive agroforestry systems in Europe; ii) identify, develop and demonstrate innovations to improve the ecosystem service benefits and viability of agroforestry systems in Europe using participatory research, iii) develop better adapted designs and practices for the different soil and climatic conditions of Europe, and iv) promote the wide adoption of sustainable agroforestry systems. Successful and sustainable agroforestry practices are best developed by farmers and land owners working in partnership with researchers, extension staff, and other rural businesses. AGFORWARD will facilitate 33 participative agroforestry research and development stakeholder groups to improve the resilience of i) existing agroforestry systems of high nature and cultural value such as the dehesa and montado; and ii) olive, traditional orchard, and other high value tree systems, and the sustainability of iii) arable and iv) livestock systems with the integration of trees. Using existing bio-economic models, AGFORWARD will evaluate and adapt the innovations to improve the delivery of positive ecosystem services and business profitability at farm- and landscape-scales across Europe. By using and developing existing European fora, such as the European Agroforestry Federation, AGFORWARD will implement an informative and effective promotion programme to benefit the European economy, environment and society.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2012.6.3-2 | Award Amount: 3.01M | Year: 2012

The aim of SPREE project is to identify potential Servicizing Policies and simulate their effect on absolute decoupling of economic growth and resource use, while achieving societal benefits. Servicizing Systems facilitate the transition from selling products to providing services. Except for ICT, these are still quite rare. SPREE is dedicated to promote the implementation of Servicizing Systems in 3 different sectors: water, mobility and agri-food. We propose to use an advanced Agent Based Modelling (ABM) approach to structure and test options for Servicizing Systems and Policies. This provides a generic framework that allows exploring short and long term effects, and assessment of the 3 sectors in different countries. Based on the models results and complementary qualitative analysis we will construct Servicizing Policy Packages that take into account the environmental, economic and social dimensions and trade-offs between them. Thus, SPREE results will help to realize EU strategies particularly in the framework of EUROPE 2020. Based on conceptualization of Servicizing Systems, we use existing instruments and develop new tools that fit into the evaluation of emerging Servicizing Systems and policies effects. We define more suitable dynamic tools needed for ex-ante assessment of newly created supply chains that can emerge out of Servicizing activities. Using ABM, we demonstrate how Servicizing Systems develop and test outcomes of proposed policies on the creation of successful Servicizing opportunities leading to absolute decoupling. The SPREE consortium consists of 10 partners from 7 different countries, and includes public bodies and research institutes to provide a sound base for both Servicizing Systems and Policy. The key deliverable is Servicizing Policy Packages that exploit existing synergies to achieve a truly sustainable EU economy where economic growth is decoupled from environmental impact, society prospers and a global example is set.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2012.6.4-3 | Award Amount: 11.29M | Year: 2013

The aim of HELIX is to exploit novel tools and methods (remote sensing/GIS-based spatial methods, omics-based approaches, biomarkers of exposure, exposure devices and models, statistical tools for combined exposures, novel study designs, and burden of disease methodologies), to characterise early-life exposure to a wide range of environmental hazards, and integrate and link these with data on major child health outcomes (growth and obesity, neurodevelopment, immune system), thus developing an Early-Life Exposome approach. HELIX uses six existing, prospective birth cohort studies as the only realistic and feasible way to obtain the comprehensive, longitudinal, human data needed to build this early-life exposome. These cohorts have already collected large amounts of data as part of national and EU-funded projects. Results will be integrated with data from European cohorts (>300,000 subjects) and registers, to estimate health impacts at the large European scale. HELIX will make a major contribution to the integrated exposure concept by developing an exposome toolkit and database that will: 1) measure a wide range of major chemical and physical environmental hazards in food, consumer products, water, air, noise, and the built environment, in pre and postnatal periods; 2) integrate data on individual, temporal, and toxicokinetic variability, and on multiple exposures, which will greatly reduce uncertainty in exposure estimates; 3) determine molecular profiles and biological pathways associated with multiple exposures using omics tools; 4) provide exposure-response estimates and thresholds for multiple exposures and child health; and 5) estimate the burden of childhood disease in Europe due to multiple environmental exposures. This integration of the chemical, physical and molecular environment during critical early-life periods will lead to major improvements in health risk and impact assessments and thus to improved prevention strategies for vulnerable populations.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ISIB-04a-2014 | Award Amount: 5.00M | Year: 2015

Europes bioeconomy is expected to foster economic growth and to tackle significant societal challenges with less harmful environmental effects through innovative, sustainable and inclusive use of European forest resources. Increasing demand for biomass and other ecosystem goods and services calls for changes in forest-related policies at different levels and across different sectors. Accordingly, the recent Forest Strategy provides clear signals towards the need for harmonised information for mapping and assessing the dynamic state of forest ecosystems and their services. Building upon scientific advances in COST E4, 39, 43, USEWOOD, FORSYS, ORCHESTRA; the networks ENFIN, EFFIS, SOSIN; the FP7 EUFODOS, S2BIOM, INTEGRAL, SIMWOOD, FIRE PARADOX the project DIABOLO aims to: i) strengthen the methodological framework towards more accurate, harmonised and timely forest information, e.g. on growing stock and stock changes, biomass, carbon, NWFP; enable the analysis of sustainable biomass supply derived from multipurpose and multisource national forest inventories; and facilitate near real-time forest disturbance monitoring, e.g. on forest fires, storm, drought, insect outbreaks; ii) support EU policy processes, international reporting obligations, forest administration and forest planning entities with new methodologies and EU-wide consistent forest information; iii) make innovative use of existing field-collected data and EC space-based applications of EO and satellite positioning systems with reference to INSPIRE and GEOSS, and global monitoring systems such as REDD\, FLEGT and UNFF. To deliver high impact, beyond state-of-the-art work within the ecological and socio-economic diversity in Europe, the trans-disciplinary DIABOLO involves experts in quantitative modelling, policy science and NFIs, from 26 European countries, committed to provide new methodologies and information for various end-uses, including EFDAC (FISE) at JRC, GLOBIOM at IIASA and work at FAO/UNECE.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-10a-2014 | Award Amount: 8.10M | Year: 2015

European aquaculture production provides direct employment to 80,000 people and a 3-billion annual turnover. Parasites cause severe disease outbreaks and high economic losses in finfish aquaculture. The overarching goal of ParaFishControl is to increase the sustainability and competitiveness of European Aquaculture by improving understanding of fish-parasite interactions and by developing innovative solutions and tools for the prevention, control and mitigation of the major parasites affecting Atlantic salmon, rainbow trout, common carp, European sea bass, gilthead sea bream and turbot. To achieve these objectives, ParaFishControl brings together a multidisciplinary consortium comprising 30 partners possessing world-leading, complementary, cross-cutting expertise and drawn from public and private research organisations, and the aquaculture industry. The consortium has access to excellent research facilities, diverse biological resources including host-parasite models, and state-of-the-art vaccinology, genomic, proteomic and transcriptomic technologies. The project will: 1) generate new scientific knowledge on key fish parasites, including genomics, life-cycle, invasion strategy and host-parasite interaction data, with special emphasis on host immunity, pathogen virulence and immunomodulation, providing a scientific basis for improved prophylaxis; 2) determine the transfer of parasites between farmed and wild host populations; 3) develop a wide range of novel prophylactic measures, including vaccines and functional feeds; 4) provide a range of advanced or alternative treatments for parasitic diseases; 5) develop cost-effective, specific and sensitive diagnostic tools for key parasitic diseases; 6) assess the risk factors involved in the emergence, transmission and pathogenesis of parasitic diseases; 7) map the zoonotic risks due to fish helminths and; 8) provide a catalogue of good husbandry practices to obtain safe and high-quality fish products.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: PHC-01-2014 | Award Amount: 6.12M | Year: 2015

Breast tumours are heterogeneous, and result from the complex interplay of multiple lifestyle/environmental and genetic risk factors. Through the EU-funded COGS project, we have identified a large number of germline variants that influence the risk of breast cancer. In combination, these variants can identify women at wide ranges of genetic risk, even in the absence of family history of breast cancer. Given that breast cancer is not one disease, it is now essential to better understand how risk factors act together to influence the development of pathologic-molecular subtypes of breast cancer. The aim of B-CAST is to identify women at moderate to high risk of breast cancer, the subtype of cancer that is most likely to develop and the prognosis of that particular subtype. This will be accomplished through large-scale pathologic-molecular analyses of over 20,000 breast tumours, and the integration of these data with unique resources from existing consortia, including germline, lifestyle/environmental, mammographic breast density, pathologic and clinical data. This information will inform the development of risk prediction and prognostication models that will be validated in longitudinal cohorts and clinical studies, and incorporated into online tools. We will also disseminate this knowledge to relevant stakeholders, and evaluate how to translate it into risk-stratified public health and clinical strategies. The current challenge for optimised prevention, early detection, and treatment decisions for breast cancer is understanding the genetic and lifestyle determinants of risk and prognosis of molecular subtypes. B-CAST will add to this understanding and will have immediate application with benefits to women by providing validated risk and prognostication tools. This will empower women and doctors with knowledge to tailor strategies for prevention and treatment. Ultimately, this work should result in reductions in the occurrence, morbidity and mortality of this disease.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA | Phase: Fission-2013-4.1.2 | Award Amount: 9.33M | Year: 2013

The CHANDA project main objective is to address the challenges in the field of nuclear data for nuclear applications and its acronym stands for solving CHAllenges in Nuclear DAta The project will prepare a proposal for an organization that will coordinate the nuclear data research program, and the infrastructures and capabilities of the EU Member States in a stable structure, well integrated with R&D coordination tools (EERA, HORIZON 2020) , and with priorities aligned with the SET Plan and the SRAs of the EURATOM Technological Platforms, including the following general objectives: - to provide the nuclear data required for the safe and sustainable operation, and development, of existing and new reactors and nuclear fuel cycle facilities, - to prepare solutions for the challenges risen by the nuclear data measurements needed by nuclear systems, like the data for highly radioactive, short lived or rare materials, - to prepare tools that solve the challenges of quantifying and certifying the accuracy of the results of simulations based on available nuclear data and models (uncertainties), - to identify and promote synergies with other nuclear data applications. Using these tools will allow EU to upgrade the nuclear data up to the level needed by simulation codes to fulfill present requirements. In particular, the simulations should be able to: reduce the number of expensive experimental validations, to support the new tendencies in safety assessments to use best estimate codes to understand the limits of the plat safety towards extreme operational conditions, to optimize safety and performance of present and future reactors and other radioactive facilities. Other applications will benefit from this accuracy in nuclear data, notably in medical applications to optimize performance and minimize dose of radiation for diagnose and treatment.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA-Infra | Phase: INFRA-2008-1.1.1 | Award Amount: 18.74M | Year: 2009

The Project promotes the access to five European Research Infrastructures, and it is structured intop eight Networking Activities, plus the Management of the Consortium, and fourteen Joint Research Activities. The Project represents the continuation of the successful HadronPhysics project in FP6 and originates from the initiative of more than 2.500 European scientists working in the field of hadron physics. Hadron physics deals with the study of strongly interacting particles, the hadrons. Hadrons are composed of quarks and gluons. Their interaction is described by Quantum Chromo Dynamics, the theory of the strong force. Hadrons form more complex systems, in particular atomic. Under extreme conditions of pressure and temperature, hadrons may loose their identity and dissolve into a new state of matter similar to the primordial matter of the early Universe. The Networking Activities are related to the organization of experimental and theoretical collaborative work concerning both ongoing activities at present Research Infrastructures and planned experiments at future facilities. In hadron physics the close interaction between experimentalists and theoreticians is of paramount importance. The Joint Research Activities concentrate on technological innovations for present and future experiments. Applications in material science, medicine, information, technology, etc., represent natural fall-outs. The main objective of this Integrating Activity is to optimize the use and development of the Research Infrastructures existing in Europe working in the field of hadron physics. The Project aims as well at structuring, on European scale, the way Research Infrastructures operate, and at fostering their joint development in terms of capacity and performance. The approach used is the bottom up approach, to respond to the needs of the scientific community in all fields of science and technology.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: NMP.2013.1.3-3 | Award Amount: 8.92M | Year: 2014

Rapidly developing markets such as green construction, energy harvesting and storage, advanced materials for aerospace, electronics, medical implants and environmental remediation are potential key application targets for nanomaterials. There, nanotechnology has the potential to make qualitative improvements or indeed even to enable the technology. Impacts range from increased efficiency of energy harvesting or storage batteries, to radical improvements in mechanical properties for construction materials. In addition, concerns of these markets such as scarcity of materials, cost, security of supply, and negative environmental impact of older products could also be addressed by new nano-enabled materials (e.g. lighter aircraft use less fuel). FutureNanoNeeds will develop a novel framework to enable naming, classification, hazard and environmental impact assessment of the next generation nanomaterials prior to their widespread industrial use. It will uniquely achieve this by integrating concepts and approaches from several well established contiguous domains, such as phylontology and crystallography to develop a robust, versatile and adaptable naming approach, coupled with a full assessment of all known biological protective responses as the basis for a decision tree for screening potential impacts of nanomaterials at all stages of their lifecycle. Together, these tools will form the basis of a value chain regulatory process which allows a each nanomaterial to be assessed for different applications on the basis of available data and the specific exposure and life cycle concerns for that application. Exemplar materials from emerging nano-industry sectors, such as energy, construction and agriculture will be evaluated via this process as demonstrators. The FutureNanoNeeds consortium is uniquely placed to achieve this, on the basis of expertise, positioning, open mindedness and a belief that new approaches are required.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: CIRC-04-2016 | Award Amount: 3.01M | Year: 2016

R2 examines the shift from the broad concept of a Circular Economy (CE) to one of a Circular Economy Business Models (CEBM), by tackling both market failure (business, consumers) and policy failure (conflicts, assumptions, unintended consequence). Its innovation lies in having a strong business-focus, examining stimuli beyond environmental goals (including ICT and eco-innovation), and in examining the role of policy innovation (including the use of policy nudges and of Policy Packages). R2 unfolds in diverse contexts with a strong emphasis on involvement and exchange. The research design employs mixed-methods, with a strong emphasis on case studies but also including desktop research, feasibility assessments (including surveys where applicable), policy formulation & stakeholder involvement. The ultimate goal of the project is to see the widespread implementation of the CE based on successful Business Models to ensure sustained economic development, to minimize environmental impact and to maximize social welfare. The goal of the R project is therefore to develop sustainable business models that would facilitate the circular economy and to propose Policy Package that will support these business models. The R2Pi Consortium consists of 14 partners from 9 Member states and associated countries. The wide range of expertise, knowledge, tools and connections existing among the consortium members will be leveraged to develop innovative practical tools and procedural guidelines that may be widely and systematically applied across many different business sectors in diverse regions and countries, across the spectrum from large established EU countries to newer and smaller member states.. Through these innovative business models and Policy Packages, the European economy will move into a more sustainable, resource efficient and resilient economic track. R will position Europe as a world leader in advancing the circular economy model.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: NMP-05-2014 | Award Amount: 8.01M | Year: 2015

Printed electronics (PE) is set to revolutionise the electronics industry over the next decade and can offer Europe the opportunity to regain lost market share. Printed electronics allows for the direct printing of a range of functional (conductive, resistive, capacitive and semi-conducting) nanomaterials formulations to enable a simpler, more cost-effective, high performance and high volume processing in comparison to traditional printed circuit board and semiconductor manufacturing techniques. It has been reported by Frost and Sullivan that the market for printed electronics will increase in revenues from $0.53Bn in 2010 to $5.04 Bn in 2016 at a compound annual growth rate of 32.5%. However, the migration towards low-cost, liquid-based, high resolution deposition and patterning using high throughput techniques, such as inkjet printing, requires that suitable functional nanomaterials formulations (e.g. inks) are available for end users in industrially relevant quantities. Presently, there are issues with industrial supply of nanomaterials which are low cost, high performance, environmentally friendly and tailored for high throughput systems. Therefore better collaboration is warranted between supply chain partners to ensure nanomaterial production and nanomaterial formulations are tailored for end use applications to meet this need. The INSPIRED project will address these fundamental issues within the printed electronics industry: Ensuring that suitable functional nanomaterials formulations (inks) are available for end users in industrial scale quantities. Production of these nanomaterial formulations on an industrial scale and then depositing them using cost-effective, high throughput printing technologies enables rapid production of printed electronic components, on a wide variety of substrates. Therefore, enabling new electronics applications, whilst overcoming the problems associated with traditional manufacturing.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2012.1.2-12 | Award Amount: 3.93M | Year: 2012

The genetic changes associated with domestication in aquaculture pose an increasing threat to the integrity of native fish gene pools. Consequently, there is a bourgeoning need for the development of molecular tools to assess and monitor the genetic impact of escaped or released farmed fish. In addition, exploration of basic links between genetic differences among farmed and wild fish and differences in important life-history traits with fitness consequences are crucial prerequisites for designing biologically informed management strategies. The project AquaTrace will establish an overview of current knowledge on aquaculture breeding, genomic resources and previous research projects for the marine species seabass, seabream and turbot. The project will apply cutting-edge genomic methods for the development of high-powered, cost-efficient, forensically validated and transferable DNA based tools for identifying and tracing the impact of farmed fish in the wild. Controlled experiments with wild and farmed fish and their hybrids will be conducted with salmon and brown trout as model organisms using advanced common garden facilities. These experiments will elucidate the fundamental consequences of introgression by pinpointing and assessing the effects on fitness of specific genomic regions. Generated insights will form the basis of a risk assessment and management recommendations including suggestions for mitigation and associated costs. This information and the developed molecular tools will be available as open-access support to project participants and external stakeholders including the aquaculture industry. The project is expected to facilitate technology transfer to the aquaculture sector by promoting better tailored breeding practices and traceability throughout production chain. Overall this initiative will support the development of sustainable European aquaculture and provide Good Environmental Status in line with the Marine Strategy Framework Directive.

Lopez M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lopez M.,CIBER ISCIII | Alvarez C.V.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Nogueiras R.,University of Santiago de Compostela | And 3 more authors.
Trends in Molecular Medicine | Year: 2013

Classically, medical textbooks taught that most effects of thyroid hormones (THs) on energy homeostasis are directly exerted in peripheral tissues. However, current evidence is changing (and challenging) our perspective about the role of THs from a 'peripheral' to a 'central' vision, implying that they affect food intake, energy expenditure, and metabolism by acting, to a large extent, at the central level. Interestingly, effects of THs are interrelated with global energy sensors in the central nervous system (CNS), such as uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2), AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK; the 'AMPK-BAT axis'), and mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR). Here, we review what is currently known about THs and their regulation of energy balance and metabolism in both peripheral and central tissues. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Saulyte J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Saulyte J.,CIBER ISCIII | Regueira C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Regueira C.,CIBER ISCIII | And 5 more authors.
PLoS Medicine | Year: 2014

Background:Allergic rhinitis, allergic dermatitis, and food allergy are extremely common diseases, especially among children, and are frequently associated to each other and to asthma. Smoking is a potential risk factor for these conditions, but so far, results from individual studies have been conflicting. The objective of this study was to examine the evidence for an association between active smoking (AS) or passive exposure to secondhand smoke and allergic conditions.Methods and Findings:We retrieved studies published in any language up to June 30th, 2013 by systematically searching Medline, Embase, the five regional bibliographic databases of the World Health Organization, and ISI-Proceedings databases, by manually examining the references of the original articles and reviews retrieved, and by establishing personal contact with clinical researchers. We included cohort, case-control, and cross-sectional studies reporting odds ratio (OR) or relative risk (RR) estimates and confidence intervals of smoking and allergic conditions, first among the general population and then among children.We retrieved 97 studies on allergic rhinitis, 91 on allergic dermatitis, and eight on food allergy published in 139 different articles. When all studies were analyzed together (showing random effects model results and pooled ORs expressed as RR), allergic rhinitis was not associated with active smoking (pooled RR, 1.02 [95% CI 0.92-1.15]), but was associated with passive smoking (pooled RR 1.10 [95% CI 1.06-1.15]). Allergic dermatitis was associated with both active (pooled RR, 1.21 [95% CI 1.14-1.29]) and passive smoking (pooled RR, 1.07 [95% CI 1.03-1.12]). In children and adolescent, allergic rhinitis was associated with active (pooled RR, 1.40 (95% CI 1.24-1.59) and passive smoking (pooled RR, 1.09 [95% CI 1.04-1.14]). Allergic dermatitis was associated with active (pooled RR, 1.36 [95% CI 1.17-1.46]) and passive smoking (pooled RR, 1.06 [95% CI 1.01-1.11]). Food allergy was associated with SHS (1.43 [1.12-1.83]) when cohort studies only were examined, but not when all studies were combined.The findings are limited by the potential for confounding and bias given that most of the individual studies used a cross-sectional design. Furthermore, the studies showed a high degree of heterogeneity and the exposure and outcome measures were assessed by self-report, which may increase the potential for misclassification.Conclusions:We observed very modest associations between smoking and some allergic diseases among adults. Among children and adolescents, both active and passive exposure to SHS were associated with a modest increased risk for allergic diseases, and passive smoking was associated with an increased risk for food allergy. Additional studies with detailed measurement of exposure and better case definition are needed to further explore the role of smoking in allergic diseases.Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary. © 2014 Saulyte et al.

Chang C.L.,Chang Gung University | Cai J.J.,Stanford University | Cai J.J.,Texas A&M University | Lo C.,University College London | And 3 more authors.
Genome Research | Year: 2011

Diversities in human physiology have been partially shaped by adaptation to natural environments and changing cultures. Recent genomic analyses have revealed single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that are associated with adaptations in immune responses, obvious changes in human body forms, or adaptations to extreme climates in select human populations. Here, we report that the human GIP locus was differentially selected among human populations based on the analysis of a nonsynonymous SNP (rs2291725). Comparative and functional analyses showed that the human GIP gene encodes a cryptic glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP) isoform (GIP55S or GIP55G) that encompasses the SNP and is resistant to serum degradation relative to the known mature GIP peptide. Importantly, we found that GIP55G, which is encoded by the derived allele, exhibits a higher bioactivity compared with GIP55S, which is derived from the ancestral allele. Haplotype structure analysis suggests that the derived allele at rs2291725 arose to dominance in East Asians ∼8100 yr ago due to positive selection. The combined results suggested that rs2291725 represents a functional mutation and may contribute to the population genetics observation. Given that GIP signaling plays a critical role in homeostasis regulation at both the enteroinsular and enteroadipocyte axes, our study highlights the importance of understanding adaptations in energy-balance regulation in the face of the emerging diabetes and obesity epidemics. © 2011 by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

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

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

Campos R.P.,Joses Health House | Vazquez M.I.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Rheumatology International | Year: 2013

Previous studies show controversial results regarding the influence of age on health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in patients with Fibromyalgia (FM). While some studies suggest that elderly patients have a worse HRQOL when compared with younger patients, others did not find differences according to age. The aim of the study was to analyse the impact of FM on HRQOL as far as patients' age is concerned. A cross-sectional study was conducted with 76 adult Portuguese women with FM between 22 and 75 years ($$ \bar{x} = 4 9. 6 1 $$; SD = 10.07). The HRQOL was assessed through the generic questionnaire Short-Form 36 Health Survey (SF-36). To this study, we considered the direct scores on each dimension that encompasses the SF-36, and standardized scores of each dimension by age and gender, using Portuguese normative data. Data regarding clinical and psychological variables (anxiety, depression and social support) were also collected. Of the total sample, 11 patients (14.5 %) had <39 years, 54 patients (71 %) had between 40 and 59 years and 11 subjects (14.5 %) had 60 years or more. There were no differences between the three patient groups in any of the clinical and psychological variables considered, and the same lack of differences was observed in the SF-36 direct scores. Nevertheless, when the analysis was made using the SF-36 standardized scores, the patients over 60 years presented a significantly lower deterioration on physical (Physical Function, Role Physical and General Health) and social dimensions when compared with patients under 59 years, on Vitality when compared with patients under 39 years, and on Body Pain when compared to patients with age between 40 and 59 years. Regarding mental dimensions, no differences were found in the three age groups. In conclusion, it is important to control age effect on HRQOL to determine the specific impact of FM. Controlling the age effect on the HRQOL with standardized scores, elderly women with FM (≥60 years) have less impact of the disease on the physical and social dimensions of the HRQOL than younger patients. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Lopez M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lopez M.,CIBER ISCIII | Tena-Sempere M.,CIBER ISCIII | Tena-Sempere M.,University of Cordoba, Spain | Tena-Sempere M.,University of Turku
Trends in Endocrinology and Metabolism | Year: 2015

Despite their prominent roles in the control of reproduction, estrogens pervade many other bodily functions. Key metabolic pathways display marked sexual differences, and estrogens are potent modulators of energy balance, as evidenced in extreme conditions of estrogen deficiency characterized by hyperphagia and decreased energy expenditure, and leading to obesity. Compelling evidence has recently demonstrated that, in addition to their peripheral effects, the actions of estrogens on energy homeostasis are exerted at central levels, to regulate almost every key aspect of metabolic homeostasis, from feeding to energy expenditure, to glucose and lipid metabolism. We review herein the state-of-the-art of the role of estrogens in the regulation of energy balance, with a focus on their central effects and modes of action. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Abajo-Arrastia J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Da Silva E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Lopez E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Mas J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Serantes A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

We study holographically the out of equilibrium dynamics of a finite size closed quantum system in 2+1 dimensions, modelled by the collapse of a shell of a massless scalar field in AdS4. In global coordinates there exists a variety of evolutions towards final black hole formation which we relate with different patterns of relaxation in the dual field theory. For large scalar initial data rapid thermalization is achieved as a priori expected. Interesting phenomena appear for small enough amplitudes. Such shells do not generate a black hole by direct collapse, but quite generically, an apparent horizon emerges after enough bounces off the AdS boundary. We relate this bulk evolution with relaxation processes at strong coupling which delay in reaching an ergodic stage. Besides the dynamics of bulk fields, we monitor the entanglement entropy, finding that it oscillates quasi-periodically before final equilibration. The radial position of the travelling shell is brought in correspondence with the evolution of the pattern of entanglement in the dual field theory. We propose, thereafter, that the observed oscillations are the dual counterpart of the quantum revivals studied in the literature. The entanglement entropy is not only able to portrait the streaming of entangled excitations, but it is also a useful probe of interaction effects. © The Authors.

Fernandez I.,Complutense University of Madrid | Mascarenas J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry | Year: 2012

In this emerging area article, we focus on novel intramolecular transition metal catalysed (4 + 3)-cycloaddition reactions of allenedienes in which the allene acts as an allylic-cation surrogate. This process has emerged as a powerful tool for the construction not only of complex seven-membered rings containing compounds but also different types of useful molecular skeletons by the proper selection of the catalyst. The transformation proceeds with high chemo- and stereoselectivity mainly because it occurs through an exo-like concerted transition state which exhibits a clear in-plane aromatic character. Despite that, different reaction mechanisms (i.e. stepwise processes) are also possible depending on the nucleophilicity of the diene moiety. © 2012 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Alonso-Meijide J.M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Freixas J.,Polytechnic University of Catalonia
Decision Support Systems | Year: 2010

In this paper we propose a new power index useful for the evaluation of each member in a committee, or democratic institution, and the degree of influence over the voting decision making system. The proposed solution is based on the observation that democratic organizations not only tend to form coalitions which can by themselves guarantee the control of the organization, but that they also do it in an extremely efficient way that avoids the inclusion of powerful members if they can be replaced by weaker ones. The mathematical foundation of the new measure is based on two different axiomatizations. A comparison with other well-known measures is also done. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Altinoluk T.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Armesto N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Beuf G.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev | Kovner A.,University of Connecticut | Lublinsky M.,Ben - Gurion University of the Negev
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2015

We point out that Bose enhancement in a hadronic wave function generically leads to correlations between produced particles. We show explicitly, by calculating the projectile density matrix in the Color Glass Condensate approach to high-energy hadronic collisions, that the Bose enhancement of gluons in the projectile leads to azimuthal collimation of long range rapidity correlations of the produced particles, the so-called ridge correlations. © 2015 The Authors.

Miralles I.,EEZA | Trasar-Cepeda C.,CSIC - National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences | Leiros M.C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gil-Sotres F.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Soil Biology and Biochemistry | Year: 2013

Decomposition processes are extremely important in biological soil crusts (BSCs). Although the effects of temperature and moisture on such processes have been widely studied, little is known about the influence of the readily metabolizable substrate (labile C) and how this substrate varies in different types of BSCs. In the present study, BSCs formed by cyanobacteria (CYANO) and by lichens (DIPLOS and LEPRA) were incubated at 25 °C (optimum temperature) and different moisture levels, for evaluation of the pool of labile C in the crust layers. Labile C was estimated as the sum of CO2-C emitted and the C extracted with hot water (80 °C) at the end of the incubation period. In all crusts, the relationship between emission and moisture fitted a quadratic model. For the different moisture contents, the sum of CO2-C emitted and C extracted with hot water converged to a constant value for each type of crust. This value, considered as the maximum content of labile C in the crust, was extremely high in DIPLOS, reaching up to 40% of the total organic C (TOC) initially present. In all crusts, and independently of the consumption of labile C, simple sugars (sucrose, glucose) remained at the end of the incubation period, which suggests that these sugars may play a protective role in BSCs. The presence of mannitol suggests that the fructose released during hydrolysis of sucrose was reduced to mannitol, thus enabling electron transport during moments of intense respiratory stress. The intense respiration in DIPLOS is partly due to the metabolism of polyphenols, which are possibly derived from the growth and death of free-living fungi that proliferate during incubation of the crusts. These results demonstrate that the metabolic processes in BSCs differ depending on the type of organisms that form the crusts and that there is a high risk of C loss from Diploschistes BSCs after heavy rainfall events. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Ferreiro E.G.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Fleuret F.,Ecole Polytechnique - Palaiseau | Lansberg J.P.,University Paris - Sud | Rakotozafindrabe A.,CEA Saclay Nuclear Research Center
Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics | Year: 2013

Based on our previous studies, we predict the nuclear-matter effects on J/ψ production in proton-nucleus collisions for the recent Large Hadron Collider pPb runs at √sNN=5 TeV. We have analyzed the effects of the modification of the gluon parton distribution functions in the nucleus, using an exact kinematics for a 2→2 process, namely, g+g→J/ψ+g as expected from leading-order perturbative QCD. This allows us to constrain the transverse-momentum while computing the nuclear modification factor for different rapidities, unlike with the usual simplified kinematics. Owing to the absence of measurement in pp collisions at the same √sNN and owing to the expected significant uncertainties in yield interpolations which would hinder definite interpretations of the nuclear modification factor R pPb, we have derived forward-to-backward and central-to-peripheral yield ratios in which the unknown proton-proton yield cancels. These have been computed without and with a transverse-momentum cut, e.g., to comply with the ATLAS and CMS constraints in the central-rapidity region. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Herva M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Franco A.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research | Carrasco E.F.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Roca E.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2011

This paper reviews a series of environmental indicators developed in the last years that were found suitable to be applied at corporate level for the evaluation of production processes and products. The indicators reviewed in this paper were classified into four main groups: 1) Indicators of Energy and Material Flows; 2) Indicators with a Territorial Dimension; 3) Indicators of Life-Cycle Assessment; 4) Indicators of Environmental Risk Assessment. Integrative and single index indicators such as the ecological footprint or carbon footprint were found as the most appealing for enterprises, although there is a need to advance in the field to combine the simplicity required at corporate level for tracking and reporting environmental data, and the scientific rigor and transparency necessary to make the scores reliable. Hence, for each of the indicators revised it was stated what they do and do not measure so that misleading information was not used for decision making at corporate level. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Alonso-Meijide J.M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Carreras F.,Polytechnic University of Catalonia
Expert Systems with Applications | Year: 2011

We propose a modification of the Shapley value for monotonic games with a coalition structure. The resulting coalitional value is a twofold extension of the Shapley value in the following sense: (1) the amount obtained by any union coincides with the Shapley value of the union in the quotient game; and (2) the players of the union share this amount proportionally to their Shapley value in the original game (i.e.; without unions). We provide axiomatic characterizations of this value close to those existing in the literature for the Owen value and include applications to coalition formation in bankruptcy and voting problems. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Abelairas-Gomez C.,University of Vigo | Rodriguez-Nunez A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Casillas-Cabana M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Romo-Perez V.,University of Vigo | Barcala-Furelos R.,University of Vigo
Resuscitation | Year: 2014

Objective: It is not clear when schoolchildren become enough strong to perform good quality chest compressions (CC). Our purpose was to assess CC quality in schoolchildren. Methods: 721 children, 10-15 years old (YO) participated in 1h hands-on training session. Subjects were tested during performing 2min of continuous CC by means of Laerdal Resusci Anne® with Skillreporter®, without feedback. Results: Mean compression depth (MCD) increased with age, from 30.7mm in 10YO to 42.9mm in 15YO (p<0.05) and was related to height, weight, and BMI. Boys delivered significantly deeper CC than girls in the 10, 13, 14 and 15YO groups (p<0.001). The percentage of children who achieved the MCD goal (50-60mm), increased with age, from 0.0% at 10 years to 26.5% at 15 years (p<0.001). Mean compression rate (MCR) ranged from 121min-1 in 15YO to 134min-1 in 12YO. The percentage of children who achieved a CC rate inside the goal (100-120min-1), ranged from 20.3% in 11YO to 31.0% in 15YO. Correct CC fraction was low and ranged from 2% in the 10YO to 22% in the 15YO (p<0.05). Children older than 13YO obtained better results than younger ones for all analyzed variables (p<0.001). Performance decreased with time: 12% of children achieved >50% of correct CC fraction in first minute, while only 5% did it in second minute (p<0.001). Conclusions: In schoolchildren, age, sex and anthropometry are significant CPR quality factors. Although quality increases with age, their global performance is poor. Thirteen years is the minimum age to be able to achieve a minimum CPR quality similar to the one adult possess. CPR performance in schoolchildren significantly deteriorates within 60. s. © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Campos R.P.,Isjd S Joses Health House | Vazquez M.I.R.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Clinical Rheumatology | Year: 2012

The objective of the study was to analyse the impact of fibromyalgia (FM) on health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and to identify clinical and psychological factors associated with the disease. A cross-sectional study was conducted with adult Portuguese women with FM. Analysed data were demographic, clinical and psychological variables and HRQOL: SF-36 and Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ). The relationship between HRQOL and the other variables was made with a bivariate analysis. To assess the relative contribution of clinical and psychological variables, a series of multiple regression analyses were designed and made. The study sample consisted of 76 women with FM (49.61±10.07 years). All dimensions of HRQOL were affected in FM, especially Physical Functioning, Physical Role Functioning and General Health. The mean FIQ total score was 68.59±17.54, and 40 patients (53%) presented scores ≥70. Pain intensity, assessed by a 10-cm visual analogue scale (VAS), was a significant predictor of HRQOL in expressing association with FIQ and all dimensions of SF-36, except Emotional Role Functioning. Anxiety (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS)) was a significant predictor of the Mental Component and General Health (SF-36). Depression (HADS) was related with Vitality, Mental Health and FIQ. Emotion-focused coping was related with General Health and Emotional Role Functioning, and social support (Satisfaction with Social Support Scale (ESSS)) was related with the Social Functioning. These clinical and psychological variables explained an acceptable proportion of variability (R2), ranging from 31.3% on Emotional Role Functioning to 70.6% on FIQ, except for Physical Role Functioning (R2=6.1). FM has a negative impact on both general and specific dimensions of HRQOL, especially the physical dimensions. Pain intensity, anxiety and depression symptoms and the emotion-focused coping are the most relevant explanatory variables of the impact of FM on HRQOL. © 2011 Clinical Rheumatology.

Higes M.,Centro Apicola Regional CAR | Meana A.,Complutense University of Madrid | Bartolome C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Botias C.,Centro Apicola Regional CAR | Martin-Hernandez R.,Institute Recursos Humanos para la Ciencia y la Tecnologia INCRECYT
Environmental Microbiology Reports | Year: 2013

The worldwide beekeeping sector has been facing a grave threat, with losses up to 100-1000 times greater than those previously reported. Despite the scale of this honey bee mortality, the causes underlying this phenomenon remain unclear, yet they are thought to be multifactorial processes. Nosema ceranae, a microsporidium recently detected in the European bee all over the world, has been implicated in the global phenomenon of colony loss, although its role remains controversial. A review of the current knowledge about this pathogen is presented focussing on discussion related with divergent results, trying to analyse the differences specially based on different methodologies applied and divisive aspects on pathology while considering a biological or veterinarian point of view. For authors, the disease produced by N.ceranae infection cannot be considered a regional problem but rather a global one, as indicated by the wide prevalence of this parasite in multiple hosts. Not only does this type of nosemosis causes a clear pathology on honeybees at both the individual and colony levels, but it also has significant effects on the production of honeybee products. Journal compilation © 2012 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Capella A.,University Paris - Sud | Ferreiro E.G.,University of Santiago de Compostela
European Physical Journal C | Year: 2012

The mid-rapidity charged particle multiplicities in pp and AA collisions at LHC energies are described in the framework of a generalized eikonal model with shadowing corrections incorporated in AA. We show that the pp data require a Pomeron intercept close to 1. 2, higher than the conventional one, close to 1.1. An s 0.11 energy dependence is obtained in the LHC range and beyond. The size and centrality dependence of the AA multiplicity at √{s} =2.76 TeV is reproduced and its energy dependence is predicted. © 2012 Springer-Verlag / Società Italiana di Fisica.

Gomez R.,Institute of Cellular Medicine | Villalvilla A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Largo R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gualillo O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Herrero-Beaumont G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Nature Reviews Rheumatology | Year: 2015

Osteoarthritis (OA), the most common rheumatic disease, is characterized by joint-space narrowing due to progressive cartilage degradation and alterations in subchondral bone and the synovial membrane. These articular disturbances can have severe consequences, including pain, disability and loss of joint architectural integrity. Although the aetiology of OA is not understood, chondrocyte-mediated inflammatory responses triggered by the activation of innate immune receptors by damage-associated molecules are thought to be involved. In this Review, we examine the relationship between Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and OA in cartilage as well as in other OA-affected tissues, such as subchondral bone and synovium. We also discuss the different TLR4 agonists associated with OA and their effects in joint tissues. Finally, we describe existing and novel strategies that might be used to develop TLR4-specific disease-modifying OA drugs (DMOADs). © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited.

Lorenzo J.M.,Centro Tecnologico Of La Carne Of Galicia | Sineiro J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Amado I.R.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research | Franco D.,Centro Tecnologico Of La Carne Of Galicia
Meat Science | Year: 2014

In this study four natural extracts from tea (TEA), grape (GRA), chestnut (CHE) and seaweed (SEA) with potential antioxidant activity were evaluated in pork patties. During 20. days of storage in modified atmosphere packs at 2. °C, pH, colour, lipid oxidation and microbial spoilage parameters of raw minced porcine patties were examined and compared with a synthetic antioxidant (BHT) and control (CON) batch. Due to their higher polyphenol content, GRA and TEA extracts were the most effective antioxidants against lipid oxidation, also limiting colour deterioration. In addition, both natural extracts led to a decrease of total viable counts (TVC), lactic acid bacteria (LAB), Pseudomonas and psychotropic aerobic bacteria compared to the control. Among the four natural compounds tested, tea and grape extracts showed the most potential as alternatives to commercial antioxidants, for increasing the quality and extending the shelf-life of porcine patties. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Benincasa P.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Benincasa P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
International Journal of Modern Physics A | Year: 2014

We review some recent developments in the understanding of field theories in the perturbative regime. In particular, we discuss the notions of analyticity, unitarity and locality, and therefore the singularity structure of scattering amplitudes in general interacting theories. We describe their tree-level structure and their on-shell representations, as well as the links between the tree-level structure itself and the structure of the loop amplitudes. Finally, we describe the on-shell diagrammatics recently proposed both on general grounds and in the remarkable example of planar supersymmetric theories. © 2014 World Scientific Publishing Company.

Adam C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sanchez-Guillen J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Wereszczynski A.,Jagiellonian University | Zakrzewski W.J.,Durham University
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2013

The Bogomol'nyi-Prasad-Sommerfield (BPS) baby Skyrme models are submodels of baby Skyrme models, where the nonlinear sigma model term is suppressed. They have Skyrmion solutions saturating a BPS bound, and the corresponding static energy functional is invariant under area-preserving diffeomorphisms (APDs). Here we show that the solitons in the BPS baby Skyrme model, which carry a nontrivial topological charge Qbâ̂̂π 2(S2) (a winding number), are dual to vortices in a BPS vortex model with a topological charge Qvâ̂̂π1(S1) (a vortex number), in the sense that there is a map between the BPS solutions of the two models. The corresponding energy densities of the BPS solutions of the two models are identical. A further consequence of the duality is that the dual BPS vortex models inherit the BPS property and the infinitely many symmetries (APDs) of the BPS baby Skyrme models. Finally, we demonstrate that the same topological duality continues to hold for the U(1) gauged versions of the models. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Crujeiras A.B.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Crujeiras A.B.,Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute IDIBELL | Crujeiras A.B.,CIBER ISCIII | Casanueva F.F.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Casanueva F.F.,CIBER ISCIII
Human Reproduction Update | Year: 2015

Background: Obesity and overweight are significantly involved in several reproductive pathologies contributing to infertility in men and women. In addition, several cancers of the reproductive system, such as endometrial, ovarian, breast, testicular and prostate cancers, are strongly influenced by obesity. However, themolecularmechanisms involved in the association between obesity and reproductive disorders remain unclear. Our proposal is to review the current scientific evidence regarding the effect of obesity-related factors as the core of the collectivemechanisms directly and indirectly involved in the relationship between obesity and reproductive disorders, with a special and original focus on the effect of the obesity state microenvironment on the epigenetic profile as a reversible mechanistic link between obesity and the reproductive disorders. Methods: A PubMed searchwas performed using keywords related to obesity and adipose-related factors and epigenetics and associated with keywords related to reproduction. Full-text articles and abstracts in the English language published prior to 31 December 2013 were reviewed. Results: The obesity state notably contributes to a reproductive dysfunction in both men and women, ranging from infertility to oncological outcomes. Several epidemiological and experimental studies demonstrate that factors secreted by the adipose tissue and gut in an obesity state can directly induce reproductive disturbances. Relevantly, these same factors are able to alter the epigenetic regulation of genes, a dynamic and reversible mechanism by which the organism responds to environmental pressures critical to the reproductive function. Conclusion: This reviewoutlines the evidence showing that the associationbetween the reproductive pathologies and obesity is not inevitable but is potentially preventable and reversible. The epigeneticmarks related to obesity could constitute a therapeutic target for the reproductive disorders associated with obesity. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology. All rights reserved.

Garcia M.,University of Alcalá | Alonso-Fernandez J.R.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Escarpa A.,University of Alcalá
Analytical Chemistry | Year: 2013

Galactosemia is a rare disease that is diagnosed through the identification of different metabolite profiles. Therefore, the specific detection of galactose 1-phosphate (Gal 1-P), galactose (Gal), and uridyl diphosphate galactose (UDP-Gal) confirms type I, II, and III galactosemia diseases. Because of the low prevalence of galactosemia, sample availability is very scarce and screening methods to diagnose the illness are not commonly employed around the world. This work describes the coupling of microfluidic chips (MCs) to copper nanowires (CuNWs) as electrochemical detectors for the fast diagnosis of galactosemia in precious newborn urine samples. Conceptually speaking, we hypothesize that the inherent selectivity and sensitivity of CuNWs, toward galactosemia metabolites detection in connection with MC selectivity could allow the fast and simultaneous detection of the three galactosemia biomarkers, which implies the fast diagnosis of any galactosemia type in just one single analysis. Electrosynthesized CuNWs show a well-defined shape, with an average length of 6 μm and a width of 300 nm. The modified electrodes exhibited an enhanced electroactive surface area twice as high as the nonmodified ones. Very good intraelectrode repeatability with relative standard deviations (RSDs) of <8% (n = 10) and interelectrode reproducibility with RSDs of <12% (n = 5) were obtained, indicating an excellent stability of the nanoscaled electrochemical detector. Under optimum chemical (3 mM NaOH, pH 11.5), electrokinetic (separation voltage +750 V, injection +1500 V for 5 s) and electrochemical (E = +0.70 V in 3 mM NaOH, pH 11.5) conditions, galactosemia diseases were unequivocally identified, differentiating between type I, II, and III, using selected precious ill diagnosed newborn urine samples. Detection proceeded within less than 350 s, required negligible urine sample consumption, and displayed impressive signal-to-noise characteristics (ranging from 14 to 80) and micromolar limits of detection (LODs) much lower than the cutoff levels (Gal 1-P > 0.4 mM and Gal > 1.4 mM). Excellent reproducible recoveries (93%-107%, RSDs <6%) were also achieved, revealing the reliability of the approach. The significance of the newborn urine samples studied confirms the analytical potency of MC-CuNWs approach, enhancing the maturity of the microchip technology and opening new avenues for future implementation of screening applications in the field. © 2013 American Chemical Society.

Martinez S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Ramil P.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Chuvieco E.,University of Alcalá
Landscape and Urban Planning | Year: 2010

One of the most urgent priorities in the conservation and management of biodiversity in Europe is the assessment of landscape conservation conditions, as well as the analysis of landscape changes. Europe is characterised by the heterogeneous nature of its cultural landscapes. We approached the monitoring and management of habitats and landscapes in the European Atlantic Biogeographical Region at landscape level, using a new methodology which integrates geographical information systems (GIS), remote sensing, environmental variables and landscape ecology. The analysis focuses on the biosphere reserve known as Terras do Miño (NW Iberian Peninsula) using two main criteria: a classification scheme based on the pan-European system EUNIS (European Nature Information System) and ecologically meaningful units of analysis, and the assessment of landscape change based on landscape indicators and conservation criteria. Spatial indices, contagion, fractal dimension and dominance, reveal a fragmentation process, occurring at sub-regional level. This process has mainly affected forests and scrublands in the area under study. Our results show the traditional landscape is declining and there is a drop in the habitats of greatest environmental interest. The methodological approach proposed in this paper will facilitate comparative analyses with those changes that may occur in other natural regions within Europe. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Beuf G.,Brookhaven National Laboratory | Beuf G.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2012

The NLO generalization of the dipole factorization formula for the structure functions F 2 and F L at low x is calculated using light-front perturbation theory. That result gives some interesting insight into the kinematics of initial state parton showers in mixed-space. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Aragon P.,Complutense University of Madrid | Baselga A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lobo J.M.,CSIC - National Museum of Natural Sciences
Journal of Applied Ecology | Year: 2010

1. Biological invasions represent a major threat to human health, ecosystem functioning and global biodiversity. Insect pests affecting agriculture and forestry are of special importance. Estimations of climatic similarity between a species' native range and potential zones of invasion can be useful for preventing new invasions, spreads and ulterior contacts among populations from multiple invasions.2. We estimated areas climatically favourable for the establishment of the western corn rootworm (WCR), an insect pest of maize Zea mays in North America that has recently invaded Central Europe through multiple invasions, and it has the potential of invasion mainly in the Northern Hemisphere.3. We used complementary techniques to assess the biological relevance of predictors and obtain areas of climatic favourability. The biological relevance of variables was first assessed accounting for two main components of the WCR's environmental niche (marginality and specialisation). Then, the most relevant predictors were used to obtain either climatic envelopes or environmental distances regarding the WCR's native range. Model outputs and predictor relevance were independently assessed in the currently invaded region of Europe and through the spatial projection of proposed physiological thresholds from previous empirical studies. Lastly, as examples of application for given time periods, we fed back results of environmental distances with maize data for a 10-year period in Europe, and refined global risk maps with the main maize zones for the year 2000.4. We present global zones of climatic favourability and invasion risk for the WCR, with emphasis on the Northern Hemisphere. The northern and north-west range limits predicted by the climatic envelope in the WCR's native range mirrored the independently characterised physiological limits. Also, our model outputs explained some of the patterns observed in Europe supporting the validity of our procedures.5. Synthesis and applications. Assessments of climatic favourability for the western corn rootworm can provide information on areas of invasion risk. Our study highlights the combination of holistic and reductionist approaches as a useful protocol to evaluate models and/or infer causality. Our methodology can be an efficient tool in combating future potential invasions, spreads and secondary contact zones of insect pests by reducing uncertainty regarding where to allocate prevention and/or eradication efforts. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 British Ecological Society.

Gracia A.,Research Center cnologia Agroalimentaria Of Aragon Cita | Loureiro M.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Nayga R.M.,University of Arkansas
American Journal of Agricultural Economics | Year: 2011

Due to the importance of comparability and external validity of results, nonhypothetical experimental methods are increasingly used to elicit consumers' willingness to pay for various goods. Two of the increasingly popular preference elicitation methods are the nonhypothetical choice experiments and experimental auctions. We conduct experiments to compare willingness to pay estimates elicited from both methods. Our results generally suggest that valuations elicited from experimental auctions can differ from those obtained from nonhypothetical choice experiments. © TheAuthor (2011). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association. All rights reserved.

Topete A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Alatorre-Meda M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Alatorre-Meda M.,University of Minho | Alatorre-Meda M.,ICVS 3Bs PT Government Asociate Laboratory | And 6 more authors.
ACS Nano | Year: 2014

Here we report the synthesis of PLGA/DOXO-core Au-branched shell nanostructures (BGNSHs) functionalized with a human serum albumin/indocyanine green/folic acid complex (HSA-ICG-FA) to configure a multifunctional nanotheranostic platform. First, branched gold nanoshells (BGNSHs) were obtained through a seeded-growth surfactant-less method. These BGNSHs were loaded during the synthetic process with the chemotherapeutic drug doxorubicin, a DNA intercalating agent and topoisomerase II inhibitior. In parallel, the fluorescent near-infrared (NIR) dye indocyanine green (ICG) was conjugated to the protein human serum albumin (HSA) by electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions. Subsequently, folic acid was covalently attached to the HSA-ICG complex. In this way, we created a protein complex with targeting specificity and fluorescent imaging capability. The resulting HSA-ICG-FA complex was adsorbed to the gold nanostructures surface (BGNSH-HSA-ICG-FA) in a straightforward incubation process thanks to the high affinity of HSA to gold surface. In this manner, BGNSH-HSA-ICG-FA platforms were featured with multifunctional abilities: the possibility of fluorescence imaging for diagnosis and therapy monitoring by exploiting the inherent fluorescence of the dye, and a multimodal therapy approach consisting of the simultaneous combination of chemotherapy, provided by the loaded drug, and the potential cytotoxic effect of photodynamic and photothermal therapies provided by the dye and the gold nanolayer of the hybrid structure, respectively, upon NIR light irradiation of suitable wavelength. The combination of this trimodal approach was observed to exert a synergistic effect on the cytotoxicity of tumoral cells in vitro. Furthermore, FA was proved to enhance the internalization of nanoplatform. The ability of the nanoplatforms as fluorescence imaging contrast agents was tested by preliminary analyzing their biodistribution in vivo in a tumor-bearing mice model. © 2014 American Chemical Society.

Kurkela A.,CERN | Kurkela A.,University of Stavanger | Zhu Y.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2015

We numerically solve the (2+1)-dimensional effective kinetic theory of weak coupling QCD under longitudinal expansion, relevant for early stages of heavy-ion collisions. We find agreement with viscous hydrodynamics and classical Yang-Mills simulations in the regimes where they are applicable. By choosing initial conditions that are motivated by a color-glass-condensate framework, we find that for Qs=2 GeV and αs=0.3 the system is approximately described by viscous hydrodynamics well before τ 1.0 fm/c. © 2015 authors. Published by the American Physical Society. Published by the American Physical Society under the terms of the "" Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the published article's title, journal citation, and DOI.

Lopez-Morinigo J.D.,King's College London | Ramos-Rios R.,University of Santiago de Compostela | David A.S.,King's College London | Dutta R.,King's College London
Comprehensive Psychiatry | Year: 2012

Background: Suicide has been shown to represent the major single cause of premature death among patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorders. Insight has been proposed to increase such risk. However, this subject has not been sufficiently investigated, and inconclusive results have been reported. Objective: The objective of this study is to systematically examine the role of insight in the risk of suicide attempts and completed suicide among patients with schizophrenia and related disorders. Method: Articles assessing insight and suicidality in patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorders published between 1977 and 2010 were reviewed. A MEDLINE search strategy was used to identify studies using keywords. Application of meta-analytic techniques to selected studies was not possible because of important methodological differences between them. Results: Fifteen studies met predetermined selection criteria. Ten failed to demonstrate a positive association between insight and risk for suicide. Discussion: There is little evidence to support the suggestion that insight may represent a risk factor for suicide in patients with schizophrenia. If there is an association between such risk and insight, it appears to be mediated by other variables such as depression and, above all, hopelessness. Further studies with larger samples and longer follow-up periods in naturalistic conditions, in which insight should be evaluated from a multidimensional approach, are required to analyze this issue in depth, given the crucial implications that it may have on the development of a model for suicide prevention in schizophrenia. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.

Aguilera-Benavente F.,University of Alcalá | Botequilha-Leitao A.,University of Algarve | Diaz-Varela E.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Applied Geography | Year: 2014

The importance of urban growth processes and their spatial characteristics has led to a growing interest in monitoring these phenomena. Spatial metrics are widely employed for this purpose, appearing in an increasing number of studies where they are used to characterise growth patterns and their evolution over time. This paper presents an analysis of urban growth patterns using spatial metrics in the Algarve (southern Portugal), an area of considerable urban dynamics associated with tourism. Two datasets were used (CORINE 1:100,000 maps and COS 1:25,000 maps) and two time periods (1990 and 2006-2007) in order to compare the different urban land use patterns detected and their evolution over time. The results show differences in urban land use patterns and associated processes at each scale, with stable land use patterns predominating at the 1:100,000 scale whereas the 1:25,000 scale showed a move towards more dispersed patterns. These results have enabled an assessment of the principal differences in urban growth patterns observed at both scales, and the implications for planning these entail. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Lopez-Merino L.,Brunel University | Cortizas A.M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lopez-Saez J.A.,Institute Historia CCHS CSIC
Quaternary Science Reviews | Year: 2011

Wetlands are exceptional ecosystems that contribute to biodiversity and play a key role in the hydrological and carbon cycles. Knowledge of their long-term ecology is essential for a proper understanding of these valuable ecosystems. We present the application of multi-proxy analyses to a 115 cm-thick core from La Molina mire (Alto de la Espina) located in NW Iberia, with a chronology spanning since ∼500 BC. The mire is located in an area intensively mined for gold during the Roman period, and close to a water-canalization system used for mining operations at that time. Our aim was to get insights into the development of the wetland by combining palynological records of hydro-hygrophytes, non-pollen palynomorphs and geochemical analyses, supported by 14C datings and multivariate statistics. The results indicate a complex pattern of ecological succession. During the local Iron Age the wetland was minerotrophic. Since ∼20 AD it was subjected to dramatic hydrological changes due to a rise of the water-table, fluctuating between the presence of open water and phases of drawdown. Finally, by ∼745 AD, the wetland experienced a rapid evolution towards ombrotrophic conditions. High grazing pressure was detected for the last decades. The significant change occurred during Early Roman Empire seems to have been the consequence of the direct use of the wetland as a water-reservoir of the canalisation system used for gold-mining. Thus, the current nature of the mire may be the result of human impact, although multiple human- and climate-induced causes were potentially linked to the detected shifts. However, the system seems to have been resilient, successfully buffering the changes without substantial alterations of its functioning. Our investigation shows that palaeoecological research is necessary to understand modifications in the structure of wetland ecosystems, their long-term ecology and the role of human-induced changes. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Costa M.F.,University of Minho | Pereira P.B.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering | Year: 2011

In orthodontics, the decreasing of tooth-size by reducing interproximal enamel surfaces (stripping) of teeth is a common procedure which allows dental alignment with minimal changes in the facial profile and no arch expansion. In order to achieve smooth surfaces, clinicians have been testing various methods and progressively improved this therapeutic technique. In order to evaluate the surface roughness of teeth subject to interproximal reduction through the five most commonly used methods, teeth were inspected by scanning electron microscopy and microtopographically measured using the optical active triangulation based microtopographer MICROTOP.06.MFC. The metrological procedure will be presented as well as the comparative results concluding on the most suitable tooth interproximal reduction method. © 2011 Copyright Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE).

Lima A.C.,University of Minho | Lima A.C.,ICVC 3Bs PT Government Association Laboratory | Custodio C.A.,University of Minho | Custodio C.A.,ICVC 3Bs PT Government Association Laboratory | And 3 more authors.
Small | Year: 2013

The production of multi-compartmented particles for biomedical and biotechnological applications is challenging and the existing methods usually involve wet and aggressive conditions that compromise the encapsulation efficiency of bioactive agents and the viability of cells. Biomimetic superhydrophobic surfaces allow construction of concentric multilayered polymeric systems, adding sequential layers where molecules or cells may be separately confined in compartments with high efficiency. Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

Martinez S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Mollicone D.,United Nation Food and Agriculture Organization
Remote Sensing | Year: 2012

The "land use" concept has evolved during recent decades and it is now considered as the socioeconomic function of land. Land use representation and land use change assessment through remote sensing still remains one of the major challenges for the remote sensing scientific community. In this paper we present a methodological approach based on remote sensing techniques to assess land use in accordance with the requirements of the United Nations Framework Climate Change Convention, UNFCCC (1995). The methodology is based mainly on the recognition of the land key elements and their function and on the adoption of the "predominant land use" criteria in the classification scheme settled by rules. The concept that underpins these rules is that the land use function of land can be expressed through hierarchical relationships among key land elements, and that these functional relationships are based on thresholds reflecting the relevance and predominance of key land elements in the observed area. When analyses are supported by high (10-30 m) or very high (<10 m) spatial resolution remote sensing data, the methodology provides a systematic approach for the representation of land use that is consistent with the concepts and methodologies developed by the International Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) to fulfill UNFCCC commitments. In particular, data with high and very high spatial resolution provide good results, with overall accuracies above 87% in the identification of key land elements that characterize land use classes. The methodology could be used to assess land use in any context (e.g., for any land use category or in any country and region) as it based on the definition of user/project rules that should be tailored on the land use function of any territory. © 2012 by the authors.

Parez N.,Service de Pediatrie | Giaquinto C.,University of Padua | Du Roure C.,PHOCUS Services Ltd | Martinon-Torres F.,University of Santiago de Compostela | And 3 more authors.
The Lancet Infectious Diseases | Year: 2014

Rotavirus gastroenteritis is a vaccine-preventable disease that confers a high medical and economic burden in more developed countries and can be fatal in less developed countries. Two vaccines with high efficacy and good safety profiles were approved and made available in Europe in 2006. We present an overview of the status of rotavirus vaccination in Europe. We discuss the drivers (including high effectiveness and effect of universal rotavirus vaccination) and barriers (including low awareness of disease burden, perception of unfavourable cost-effectiveness, and potential safety concerns) to the implementation of universal rotavirus vaccination in Europe. By February, 2014, national universal rotavirus vaccination had been implemented in Belgium, Luxembourg, Austria, Finland, Greece, Luxembourg, Norway, and the UK. Four other German states have issued recommendations and reimbursement is provided by sickness funds. Other countries were at various stages of recommending or implementing universal rotavirus vaccination. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE-2007-2-4-02 | Award Amount: 7.51M | Year: 2008

RASFF alerts show that monitoring of chemical contaminants in food and feed is very relevant in European food safety. Also consumers placed chemical contaminants on top of the worry-scale of food-related risks. According to the General Food Law, food and feed industries are responsible for the safety of their products. Often expensive instrumental single-analyte methods are being applied by regulatory and industrial laboratories. There is an urgent need for replacement by validated screening tools which are simple, inexpensive and rapid, but also show multiplex capability by detecting as many contaminants in parallel as possible. The CONffIDENCE proposal has been designed to provide long-term solutions to the monitoring of persistent organic pollutants, perfluorinated compounds, pesticides, veterinary pharmaceuticals (coccidiostats, antibiotics), heavy metals and biotoxins (alkaloids, marine toxins, mycotoxins) in high-risk products such as fish and fish feed, cereal-based food/feed and vegetables. A balanced mix of novel multiplex technologies will be utilized, including dipsticks, flow cytometry with functionalised beads, SPR optical and electrochemical biosensors, cytosensors and metabolomics-like comprehensive profiling. After validation, the simplified methods will be applied in impact demonstrators that contribute to exposure assessment and validation of hazard models. Moreover, hazards of emerging contaminants will be assessed through toxicological testing. Dissemination to scientists and to relevant stakeholders, including the food and feed industry, regulatory control bodies, DG-SANCO, EFSA, exporting countries, CRLs, routine laboratories, CEN and consumers will be assured by e-communication, press releases, public workshops, open days, presentations, publications and a science education module. The consortium consists of 17 partners from 10 countries, representing 9 research institutes, 5 universities, 2 large food and feed industries and 1 SME.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: NMBP-10-2016 | Award Amount: 6.00M | Year: 2017

The overall objective of B-SMART is: 1. to design modular nanoparticles, 2. to manufacture them via a quality-by-design protocol, 3. to achieve delivery of therapeutic RNAs to the brain and treat neurodegenerative diseases. I. To design modular nanoparticles consisting of o an active RNA payload o established (lipid-based), emerging (trigger-responsive polymer-based) or exploratory (extracellular vesicle-based) nanoparticles o a targeting ligand consisting of the variable domain of heavy chain only antibodies (also known as VHHs or nanobodies), which are coupled to the carrier platform II. To manufacture the modular nanoparticles using a microfluidic assembly system that will ensure quality-by-design: uniform nanoparticles across research sites and excellent control over the physico-chemical parameters. III. To test pre-clinical activity of formulations with promising in vitro activity with good cell/blood compatibility and to select the best RNA-formulation for clinical translation to treat neurodegenerative diseases. Pre-clinical efficacy is tested after o local injection o nasal administration o systemic administration The neurodegenerative diseases carry a high burden for patients since they are without exception progressive. But they also carry a substantial socio-economic burden with estimated costs of 130 billion euro. per year (2008). IV. The technical work in B-SMART will be supported by project management. It ensures that the project is coordinated in a clear, unambiguous and mutually acceptable manner and that the project achieves its objectives, within the given financial and time constraints. in B-SMART we expect to arrive at a scale-able nanoparticle formulation with uniform characteristics that shows strong pre-clinical evidence of therapeutic efficacy and is ready for clinical translation.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: KBBE-2007-3-1-08 | Award Amount: 870.89K | Year: 2008

AquaTerrE will promote the cooperation between research centres, business and other stakeholders in Europe devoted to the research, development and application of biomass and biofuel production and valorisation. It will aim integration and unification of efforts and the exchange of knowledge and expertise between partners, to promote the creation of a network for improving biomass and waste reutilisation. Mainly, AquaTerrE aims to make an inventory of existing biomass feedstocks in Europe and quantify the potential and identify of the best ones. In addition, to study the best possibilities for implementing different biomass sources in different environments to improve their utilisation. Pursuing this target, literature and data survey and current research review will be carried out. Furthermore, the scope of AquaTerrE consists also in mapping European biomass feedstocks using different tools as Geographical Information Systems (GIS). Additionally, AquaTerrE expert members will identify economic and environmental impacts schemes to define the optimum Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). LCA is a standardized and structured method for calculating the environmental load of a product, process or activity throughout all its phases. The implementation of a new bio-product/bio-fuel in the market requires the analysis of economical, social and environmental aspects, with the objective of attaining enough information for the decision making progress. The contribution of a LCA study to this project can be framed in the identification of best sources of biomass feedstock as well as other agricultural waste for the sustainable obtaining of bio-fuels and other added value products.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: NMP-08-2014 | Award Amount: 6.28M | Year: 2015

The aim of NanoPilot will be to set-up a flexible and adaptable pilot plant operating under GMP for the production of small batches of polymer-based nanopharmaceuticals, which exhibit significant potential in the field of drug-delivery particularly for the design of second-generation nanopharmaceuticals. Three different processes will be established for the production of three different nanopharmaceuticals selected on the basis of their TRL and positive commercial evaluation: a) topical treatment of ocular pain associated with dry eye syndrome containing short interfering RNA and lactic acid, b) A resuspendable HIV nanovaccine for intranasal vaccination containing 12 peptides in its formulation. c) Hyaluronan based hollow spheres intended for intravesical instillation, for the treatment of interstitial cystitis/painful bladder syndrome. State of the art production processes including micro reactors and highly advanced characterization techniques will ensure the quality of the nanodrugs. Existing laboratories suitable for large-scale production of biologics in compliance with GMP, and owned by the coordinator, will be adapted and certified within this project to enable the operability of the pilot plant. NanoPilot consists of nine complementary partners composed by 1 Industry and 2 academia developers of the nanosystems to scale-up. A research Institute expert in nanoparticle characterizacion and already operating in compliance with Good laboratory practices. An SME and an Industry that will develop ad-hoc continuous flow reactors for the optimization of two of the three processes. A consultancy (SME) expert in Quality system implementation and laboratory information management systems. A second consultancy (SME) in charge of the business plan, that will also help the coordinator in dissemination and exploitation activities. Finally, a research centre with a recorded track in nanomedicine, already operating under ISO 9001, and will be in charge of the pilot plant.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE-2009-2-2-01 | Award Amount: 7.98M | Year: 2010

NeuroFAST is a multidisciplinary project, involving ten teams from seven countries, to explore the neurobiology of addiction and eating behaviour and the complex socio-psychological forces that can lead to its dysregulation. These forces include dietary components (including highly palatable foods and alcohol), some of which may have addictive properties, but also cultural and social pressures, everyday stressors, and family-genetic influences on these. The project will provide new data from human studies, including human nutritional studies, that is needed to inform health policy initiatives. This will be underpinned by state-of-the art mechanistic research to establish a solid scientific basis for this advice. The European added value lies in building up the necessary critical mass in several fields of expertise: psychology, epidemiology, human genetics related to eating disorders, human nutrition, eating and addictive behaviour disorders, endocrinology, human brain imaging, together with studies of the basic mechanisms of eating behaviour and addiction, (neuro)endocrine regulators, stress, opiate dependence, and cannabinoid actions. To provide scientific support for European public health policies, a focus will be on a socio-psychological analysis of determinants of food addiction and substance abuse, and of how risk factors like stress in the workplace are driving addictive behaviour. We will establish an evidence base for inter-relationships, linking eating disorder research with obesity research, stress research and addiction research, and involving studies of selected individual food components using novel designed foods with controlled components. In summary, we will use a synergistic combination of controlled laboratory studies, characterization of patient groups, and examination of real-world scenarios based on epidemiological community samples that will be relevant to policy development.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: KBBE-2009-1-2-11 | Award Amount: 4.93M | Year: 2010

Secure and stabilised hatchery production of bivalve seed is the unifying objective of the REPROSEED project. Development of innovative new methods will lead to high quality seed of guaranteed physiological health, sanitary status and genetic diversity. By considering the biology of bivalve life stages and the trophic and microbial environment of rearing conditions REPROSEED researches ways of controlling key processes, like reproduction, larval rearing and metamorphosis. New technological advances, like recirculation systems and outdoor algal culture, will provide ways to reduce costs. The need for hatcheries is growing in Europe due to demands from the shellfish industry for quality juveniles and concerns about wild seed due to inconsistent spatfall or environmental harm caused by seed collection of some species. Four economically important molluscs were selected to represent these needs: two species already reared in hatcheries, Crassostrea gigas and Pecten maximus, and two emerging hatchery species, Mytilus edulis and Ruditapes decussatus. Scientific research is most advanced for C. gigas, so its further development will enable us to attain a level of excellence. Knowledge on this species and on P. maximus, an excellent model for solving particular bivalve rearing problems, can also help improve hatchery culture of the other species. Inter-specific differences enable comparative study of important traits. REPROSEED investigates the physiological basis of early sexual maturation, gamete competency, immunity and metamorphosis, at cellular and molecular levels, including genomics and proteomics. Application of these results and dedicated studies will be made on practical aspects of controlled bivalve reproduction, nutritional needs for broodstock conditioning and larval growth (including testing of mutant yeasts and lipid microcapsules) and the benefits of probiotics. Advances will be shared with end-users throughout the project.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2013.2.5-02 | Award Amount: 7.64M | Year: 2013

Industrial food production serves to satisfy basic human needs and the dairy industry accounts with 13% turnover for the total food and drink industry in Europe. The aim of the project SUSMILK is to initialise a system change within the whole process chain for market milk and milk products to minimise energy and water consumption and establish renewable energy resources. Milk processing is characterised by a large variety of heating and cooling processes. Main R&D activities are intended to substitute steam as heat transfer medium by hot water produced by means of renewable resources. Supply of heat and electricity shall completely be fulfilled by combined heat and power generation, heat pumps, solar heat and, where appropriate, on-site produced biogas or other renewable fuels produced from waste utilisation. As process machines and equipment are often used over periods of times up to 30 years in food industry, such innovations will have an impact on energy consumption and CO2-emissions for the next decades. To assure a sustainable supply of energy and raw materials over such a long time, the system change is overdue. To keep hygienic standards water consuming CIP processes are necessary, which produce wastewater with high organic load. Closing water circuits, recycling of CIP solutions and recovery of the inherent heat is a second challenging part of the project. As a further means to save water and energy, the pre-concentration of milk on the dairy farm will be investigated. This measure has the potential to reduce transport energy, to reduce the sizes of tanks and machines in the dairy and increase the efficiency of production processes for cheese, yoghurt and other such products. The whole project includes the development of technical components, their installation and testing at partner dairies of all sizes as well as a process simulation of a green dairy and the life cycle assessment (LCA) of such a facility.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2013.6.3-2 | Award Amount: 5.50M | Year: 2013

European pigs and cows jointly produce about 1.27 billion tonnes of manure per year, a largely unexploited resource of organic carbon and nutrients, and therefore an exquisite mining opportunity. ManureEcoMine proposes an integrated approach to the treatment and reuse of animal husbandry waste in nitrate vulnerable and sensitive areas and beyond, by applying the eco-innovative principles of sustainability, resource recovery and energy efficiency. Technologies of proven efficacy in the wastewater treatment field will be combined in several process configurations to demonstrate their technological and environmental potential at pilot scale for cow and pig manure. Anaerobic digestion (mesophilic/thermophilic), ammonia stripping, struvite precipitation and partial nitritation/anammox will be key technologies. To render the cradle-to-cradle approach complete, the fertilizer and potential trace contaminants effects of recovered nutrients on plant growth and soil health and emissions will established, and safety will be managed. Life cycle analyses will determine the sustainability of the concept as such, and identify the most environmentally friendly technology and most effective and safe reuse strategy. Finally, the boundaries of economic viability will be determined.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: NoE | Phase: SEC-2011.7.4-1 | Award Amount: 8.18M | Year: 2012

The EUROFORGEN-NoE proposal aims to develop a network of excellence for the creation of a European Virtual Centre of Forensic Genetic Research. Forensic genetics is a highly innovative field of applied science with a strong impact on the security of citizens. However, the genetic methods to identify offenders as well as the creation of national DNA databases have caused concerns to the possible violation of privacy rights. Furthermore, studies to assess the societal dimension of security following the implementation of even more intrusive methods such as the genetic prediction of externally visible characteristics are highly relevant for their public acceptance. The network includes some of the leading groups in European forensic genetic research. It aims to create a closer integration of existing collaborations, as well as establishing new interactions in the field of security, as all key players are addressed: scientists, stakeholders, end-users, educational centres and scientific societies. Only if a long-term collaborative network can be established it will become possible to connect all scientific groups active in the field of forensic genetics, and to initiate a sustained effort covering all aspects of research. These efforts have to be combined with identifying and selecting the most innovative ideas to meet the challenges of analyzing biological crime scene samples compromised by degradation or indentified as mixtures of traces from multiple human sources. The proposal integrates five working packages. WP 1 is devoted to management and coordination. WP 2 will lead the activities aimed at the creation of the virtual centre of research. WP 3 will carry out exemplar projects as models of collaboration and integration of cutting edge research, later complemented by a competitive call for new research projects. The societal dimension of security as well as the ethical and legal aspects wil be addressed in WP 4, whereas WP 5 is devoted to education and training.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: SPA.2010.1.1-04 | Award Amount: 2.98M | Year: 2011

The main objective of the proposed project GLOWASIS is to pre-validate a GMES Global Service for Water Scarcity Information. In European and global pilots on the scale of river catchments, it will combine in-situ and satellite derived water cycle information and more government ruled statistical water demand data in order to create an information portal on water scarcity. This portal will be made interoperable with the WISE-RTD portal. More awareness for the complexity of the water scarcity problem will be created and additional capabilities of satellite-measured water cycle parameters can be promoted, but also directly matched to user requirements. By creating the user-scientist community, GLOWASIS will guide earth observation scientists to efficient innovation for the specific purpose of water scarcity assessment and forecasting. By linking water demand and supply in three pilot studies with existing systems (EDO and PCR-GLOBWB) for medium- and long-term forecasting in Europe, Africa and worldwide, GLOWASIS information will contribute both in near-real time reporting for emerging drought events as well as in provision of climate change time series. By combining complex water cycle variables, governmental issues and economic relations with respect to water demand, GLOWASIS will aim for the needed streamlining of the wide variety of important water scarcity information. Infrastructure is set up for dissemination and inclusion of current and future innovative and integrated multi-purpose products for research & operational applications. The service will use data from GMES Core Services LMCS Geoland2 and Marine Core Service MyOcean (e.g. land use, soil moisture, soil sealing, sea level), in-situ data from GEWEX initiatives (i.e. International Soil Moisture network), agricultural and industrial water use and demand (statistical AQUASTAT, SEEAW and modelled) and additional water-cycle information from existing global satellite services.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME | Phase: SME-1 | Award Amount: 1.85M | Year: 2008

Hatchery production of bivalves during autumn and winter (outside natural spawning season) is a challenge, but necessary to keep market shares and ensure sufficient seed supply to European growers on a year-round basis. The SETTLE project will focus on key events during hatchery production of flat oyster (Ostrea edulis) and great scallop (Pecten maximus) which are species native to Europe. The overall objective is to foster year-round production of spat in hatcheries by controlling gonad development and maximise larval metamorphosis and settlement. Flat oyster and great scallop are both highly valued and sought-after products on the European seafood market, but insufficient numbers of high quality seed severely hamper aquaculture development of this sector. Bivalve hatcheries (SMEs) in Spain, France, Ireland and Norway are looking to increase the availability of spat and will engage RTDs in Spain, France and Norway to solve selected problems related to broodstock conditioning and larval settlement. Successful intensive production of bivalve spat depends on predictable procedures for conditioning of broodstock (manipulation with feed, light and temperature) to induce spawning, breeding period, larval rearing and settlement. To solve the seasonal problems the SETTLE project will identify environmental factors leading to successful off-season broodstock conditioning, reveal effects of conditioning and other biological processes on settlement and optimise existing culture methods and technology. By extending the hatchery production season and obtaining new knowledge and technologies the SMEs will increase the available number of flat oyster and great scallop spat. A quantity and value increase 5-10 times of todays level is anticipated within 5-7 years. This will strengthen the competitive position of the SMEs and increase the shellfish production in Europe significantly.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IRSES | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2009-IRSES | Award Amount: 3.25M | Year: 2011

The High Energy Physics (HEP) European scientific community has developed cutting-edge, large-scale facilities that make it a world leader. Particle Physics Programmes in Europe are attracting participation of groups from non-European countries, in particular from Latin America. In the reciprocal direction, the Pierre Auger Observatory for High Energy Cosmic Rays, recently established in Argentina, receives a large European participation. The Latin American HEP community is composed of about 1000 physicists and engineers, more than a half young physicists, graduates and PhDs. In Europe, Latin American physicists collaborate with Research Institutions, Universities and with the European Laboratory for Particle Physics (CERN). Current trend is to increase participation in CERN, in view of the start-up of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). Large scale LA-Europe collaboration is recent, however, and needs to be consolidated. The EPLANET program will support visits from Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Mexico to CERN and other European Institutions and from European countries to the AUGER Observatory, with short exchanges (1-2 months) for senior and longer exchanges (2-12 months) for junior investigators, for a total of about 1800 months. Visits will be used to perform research on the LHC and AUGER experiments, inside well established groups. Scientific results thereby obtained will parallel advanced training and acquisition of new techonologies in accelerator and detector physics, medical physics and ICT. EPLANET will foster the community and develop internal Latin-American collaboration to reach the critical scientific mass and profit from the educational, technological and industrial impact of HEP. The detachment of European senior and junior scientists in Latin-America will strengthen research partnership between Latin America and Europe. EPLANET will foster a sustainable collaboration between Europe and Latin America in HEP and associated technologies.

Sergas, University of Santiago de Compostela, Fundacion Ramon Dominguez and Fundacion Pedro Barrie De La Maza | Date: 2013-11-26

The present invention relates to a composition for modulating tumor cell dissemination, in particular metastatic cancer cells. In particular, the invention relates to an agent for modulating metastatic tumor cell dissemination for use in the treatment and/or prevention of a metastatic cancer wherein the agent is a capture agent and/or a chemoattractant for tumor cells. The invention also relates to a product, comprising an agent for modulating metastatic kidneys tumor cell dissemination, and to a method of treatment or prevention of cancer.

Hidrotec Tecnologia del Agua S.L. and University of Santiago de Compostela | Date: 2014-06-11

The present invention is related to a method for starting up and controlling a biological process for removing nitrogen contained in wastewater through a combined stage of nitrification and anaerobic oxidation of ammonium ion (Anammox), in which an aerobic reaction of partial nitrification of the ammonium contained in the wastewater to nitrite with oxidizing bacteria and addition of oxygen, and a nitrogen production anoxic reaction with ammonium and nitrite autotrophic denitrifying bacteria, of the phylum Planctomycetes, take place at the same time, both bacterial populations being arranged in the form of biofilm in the same reactor such that the oxidizing bacteria are on the outside of the biofilm contacting an aerobic zone inside the reactor and the autotrophic bacteria are inside the biofilm creating an anoxic zone, characterized in that the reactor is fed with a wastewater flow and air/oxygen are injected into the same continuously until its shutdown, i.e. aeration is facilitated in the entire reaction stage, keeping the dose of dissolved oxygen in the reactor at a level higher than 0.6 mg/l. In order to ensure the stability of the process, the air/oxygen supply to the reactor, the hydraulic residence time and the alkalinity in the feed are controlled such that the (Alkalinity_(input)-Alkalinity_(output))/(Conductivity _(input)-Conductivity_(output)) ratio must be kept, ideally, below 13 mM/(mS/cm^(25C)). In order to maintain a high efficiency of the process, the alkalinity at the output of the reactor must be between 5% and 25% of the alkalinity at the input. Ideally, this process is applied to nitrogen removal from effluent from anaerobic digesters that preferably can be previously pretreated in a tank the objective of which is to laminate the water flow to be treated in the biological unity and to decant the solids found in said effluent from anaerobic digestion.

Faustino C.M.C.,University of Lisbon | Calado A.R.T.,University of Lisbon | Garcia-Rio L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Colloid and Interface Science | Year: 2011

The mixed micelle formation in aqueous solutions between an anionic gemini surfactant derived from the amino acid cystine (C 8Cys) 2, and the phospholipids 1,2-diheptanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DHPC, a micelle-forming phospholipid) and 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DMPC, a vesicle-forming phospholipid) has been studied by conductivity and the results compared with the ones obtained for the mixed systems with the single-chain surfactant derived from cysteine, C 8Cys. Phospholipid-surfactant interactions were found to be synergistic in nature and dependent on the type of phospholipid and on surfactant hydrophobicity. Regular solution theory was used to analyse the gemini surfactant-DHPC binary mixtures and the interaction parameter, β 12, has been evaluated, as well as mixed micelle composition. The results have been interpreted in terms of the interplay between reduction of the electrostatic repulsions among the ionic head groups of the surfactants and steric hindrances arising from incorporation of the zwitterionic phospholipids in the mixed micelles. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

Bautista I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | de Deus J.D.,University of Lisbon | Pajares C.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2010

We discuss the elliptic flow dependence on pseudorapidity and number of participating nucleons in the framework of string percolation, and argue that the geometry of the initial overlap region of interaction, projected in the impact parameter plane, determines the experimentally measured azimuthal asymmetries. We found good agreement with data. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Baselga A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lobo J.M.,CSIC - National Museum of Natural Sciences | Svenning J.-C.,University of Aarhus | Araujo M.B.,CSIC - National Museum of Natural Sciences | Araujo M.B.,University of Évora
Journal of Biogeography | Year: 2012

Aim Do species range shapes follow general patterns? If so, what mechanisms underlie those patterns? We show for 11,582 species from a variety of taxa across the world that most species have similar latitudinal and longitudinal ranges. We then seek to disentangle the roles of climate, extrinsic dispersal limitation (e.g. barriers) and intrinsic dispersal limitation (reflecting a species' ability to disperse) as constraints of species range shape. We also assess the relationship between range size and shape. Location Global. Methods Range shape patterns were measured as the slope of the regression of latitudinal species ranges against longitudinal ranges for each taxon and continent, and as the coefficient of determination measuring the degree of scattering of species ranges from the 1:1 line (i.e. latitudinal range=longitudinal range). Two major competing hypotheses explaining species distributions (i.e. dispersal or climatic determinism) were explored. To this end, we compared the observed slopes and coefficients of determination with those predicted by a climatic null model that estimates the potential range shapes in the absence of dispersal limitation. The predictions compared were that species distribution shapes are determined purely by (1) intrinsic dispersal limitation, (2) extrinsic dispersal limitations such as topographic barriers, and (3) climate. Results Using this methodology, we show for a wide variety of taxa across the globe that species generally have very similar latitudinal and longitudinal ranges. However, neither neutral models assuming random but spatially constrained dispersal, nor models assuming climatic control of species distributions describe range shapes adequately. The empirical relationship between the latitudinal and longitudinal ranges of species falls between the predictions of these competing models. Main conclusions We propose that this pattern arises from the combined effect of macroclimate and intrinsic dispersal limitation, the latter being the major determinant among restricted-range species. Hence, accurately projecting the impact of climate change onto species ranges will require a solid understanding of how climate and dispersal jointly control species ranges. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Villasante S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Villasante S.,Royal Swedish Academy Of Sciences
Marine Policy | Year: 2012

In Europe, 88% of fish stocks are being fished beyond Maximum Sustainable Yield and 30% of stocks are outside of biological limits. The blue whiting fishery is also following a consistent trend of a declining, and the EU recently adopted a 93% quota decrease for this species. Despite the abundant literature related to genetic aspects of population structure of aquatic resources, few studies have specifically addressed the link between fisheries management and population genetics. Given potential differences in the behavior of different subpopulations, population genetics has great relevance in the correct interpretation of the evolution of stocks. Ignoring the congruence of spatial scales between the population structure of fish species and management units can result in reduced productivity and local reduction of populations. This paper adopts the framework of resilience to explore the social-ecological feedbacks between unobserved genetic diversity and human dimension of the blue whiting fishery in Galician coastal communities due to the mismanagement of the fishery in the EU. The results presented here suggest that there is considerable evidence that the currently used management unit is inconsistent with the recent growth and genetic differences observed. The results also reveal that based on the evidence currently available and in accordance with the precautionary principle, the stocks of blue whiting in Northern and Southern ICES areas should be treated as separate in the Northeast Atlantic Ocean. The results obtained indicate that unobserved genetic diversity of the fishery can lead to an equivocal reduction of fishing quotas in the Southern area. Finally, the paper also shows that the total economic losses resulting from the 93% quota decrease of the species, which includes effects on the rest of the Galician economy, is 40,081,636 Euros per year. The next Common Fishery Policy Reform offers a great opportunity to reverse the current unsustainable path of the fishery and to accept humans as a component of this marine social-ecological system. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Armesto N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gulhan D.C.,Massachusetts Institute of Technology | Milhano J.G.,University of Lisbon | Milhano J.G.,CERN
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2015

Centrality selection has been observed to have a large effect on jet observables in pPb collisions at the Large Hadron Collider, stronger than that predicted by the nuclear modification of parton densities. We study to which extent simple considerations of energy-momentum conservation which link the hard process with the underlying event that provides the centrality estimator, affect jets observables in such collisions. We develop a simplistic approach that considers first the production of jets in a pp collision as described by PYTHIA. From each pp collision, the value of the energy of the parton from the proton participating in the hard scattering is extracted. Then, the underlying event is generated simulating a pPb collision through HIJING, but with the energy of the proton decreased according to the value extracted in the previous step, and both collisions are added. This model is able to capture the bulk of the centrality effect for central to semicentral collisions, for the two available sets of data: dijets from the CMS Collaboration and single jets from the ATLAS Collaboration. As expected, the model fails for peripheral collisions where very few nucleons from Pb participate. © 2015.

Svenning J.-C.,University of Aarhus | Flojgaard C.,University of Aarhus | Baselga A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Animal Ecology | Year: 2011

+Summary: 1.Environmental sorting, historical factors and neutral dynamics may all drive beta diversity (change in species composition across space), but their relative importance remains unresolved. In the case of European mammals, key potential drivers of large-scale beta diversity include current climate, neutral dynamics and two historical factors: Pleistocene glaciations and peninsular dynamics (immigration from extra-regional eastern faunal source areas and inter-linked relictual survival and evolutionary differentiation in isolated areas). 2.We assessed the relative importance of these drivers using a novel analytical framework to deconstruct beta diversity of non-volant mammals in Europe (138 species) into its turnover (change in species composition because of species replacements) and nestedness components (change in species composition because of species richness differences) at continental and regional (250000km2) scales. 3.We found continental-scale mammal beta diversity to be mainly caused by spatial turnover (99·9%), with only a small contribution (0·1%) from nestedness. 4.Current climate emerged as an important driver of beta diversity, given the strong continental-scale turnover, particularly in north-south direction, i.e., in line with the latitudinal climate gradient, and, more directly, the strong correlation of climate with spatial turnover at both continental and regional scales. 5.However, there was also evidence for the importance of non-climatic drivers. Notably, the compositional variation purely accounted for by space was greater than that purely accounted for by environment for both the turnover and the nestedness component of beta diversity. Furthermore, the strong longitudinal turnover within Southern Europe is in accordance with the region's long-term climatic stability having allowed multiple refugia and local evolutionary diversification. As expected from peninsular dynamics, there was increasing dissimilarity with geographic distance in an east-west direction because of nestedness, but only in Central and Northern Europe. 6.In conclusion, European mammal beta diversity mainly reflects spatial turnover and only to a limited extent nestedness and is driven by current climate in combination with historical - and perhaps, neutral - dynamics. These findings suggest that a key challenge for climate-change predictive studies will be taking the influence of non-climatic factors into account. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 British Ecological Society.

Jokela N.,University of Helsinki | Jokela N.,Helsinki Institute of Physics | Ramallo A.V.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Ramallo A.V.,Instituto Galego Of Fisica Of Altas Enerxias Igfae
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2015

We study the collective excitations of holographic quantum liquids formed in the low energy theory living at the intersection of two sets of D-branes. The corresponding field theory dual is a supersymmetric Yang-Mills theory with massless matter hypermultiplets in the fundamental representation of the gauge group which generically live on a defect of the unflavored theory. Working in the quenched (probe) approximation, we focus on determining the universal properties of these systems. We analyze their thermodynamics, the speed of first sound, the diffusion constant, and the speed of zero sound. We study the influence of temperature, chemical potential, and magnetic field on these quantities, as well as on the corresponding collisionless/hydrodynamic crossover. We also generalize the alternative quantization for all conformally AdS4 cases and study the anyonic correlators. © 2015 American Physical Society.

Rissech C.,University of Barcelona | Lopez-Costas O.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lopez-Costas O.,University of Granada | Turbon D.,University of Barcelona
International Journal of Legal Medicine | Year: 2013

The goal of the present study is to examine cross-sectional information on the growth of the humerus based on the analysis of four measurements, namely, diaphyseal length, transversal diameter of the proximal (metaphyseal) end of the shaft, epicondylar breadth and vertical diameter of the head. This analysis was performed in 181 individuals (90 â™" and 91 ♀) ranging from birth to 25 years of age and belonging to three documented Western European skeletal collections (Coimbra, Lisbon and St. Bride). After testing the homogeneity of the sample, the existence of sexual differences (Student's t- and Mann-Whitney U-test) and the growth of the variables (polynomial regression) were evaluated. The results showed the presence of sexual differences in epicondylar breadth above 20 years of age and vertical diameter of the head from 15 years of age, thus indicating that these two variables may be of use in determining sex from that age onward. The growth pattern of the variables showed a continuous increase and followed first- and second-degree polynomials. However, growth of the transversal diameter of the proximal end of the shaft followed a fourth-degree polynomial. Strong correlation coefficients were identified between humeral size and age for each of the four metric variables. These results indicate that any of the humeral measurements studied herein is likely to serve as a useful means of estimating sub-adult age in forensic samples. © 2012 Springer-Verlag.

Fernandez-Delgado M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Cernadas E.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Barro S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Amorim D.,Bahia State University
Journal of Machine Learning Research | Year: 2014

We evaluate 179 classifiers arising from 17 families (discriminant analysis, Bayesian, neural networks, support vector machines, decision trees, rule-based classifi ers, boosting, bagging, stacking, random forests and other ensembles, generalized linear models, nearestneighbors, partial least squares and principal component regression, logistic and multinomial regression, multiple adaptive regression splines and other methods), implemented in Weka, R (with and without the caret package), C and Matlab, including all the relevant classifiers available today. We use 121 data sets, which represent the whole UCI data base (excluding the large-scale problems) and other own real problems, in order to achieve significant conclusions about the classifier behavior, not dependent on the data set collection. The classifiers most likely to be the bests are the random forest (RF) versions, the best of which (implemented in R and accessed via caret) achieves 94.1% of the maximum accuracy overcoming 90% in the 84.3% of the data sets. However, the difference is not statistically significant with the second best, the SVM with Gaussian kernel implemented in C using LibSVM, which achieves 92.3% of the maximum accuracy. A few models are clearly better than the remaining ones: random forest, SVM with Gaussian and polynomial kernels, extreme learning machine with Gaussian kernel, C5.0 and avNNet (a committee of multi-layer perceptrons implemented in R with the caret package). The random forest is clearly the best family of classifiers (3 out of 5 bests classi ers are RF), followed by SVM (4 classifiers in the top-10), neural networks and boosting ensembles (5 and 3 members in the top-20, respectively). © 2014 Manuel Fernández-Delgado, Eva Cernadas, Senén Barro and Dinani Amorim.

Albacete J.L.,CEA Saclay Nuclear Research Center | Armesto N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Milhano J.G.,University of Lisbon | Milhano J.G.,CERN | And 2 more authors.
European Physical Journal C | Year: 2011

We present a global analysis of available data on inclusive structure functions and reduced cross sections measured in electron-proton scattering at small values of Bjorken-x, x<0.01, including the latest data from HERA on reduced cross sections. Our approach relies on the dipole formulation of DIS together with the use of the non-linear running coupling Balitsky-Kovchegov equation for the description of the small-x dynamics. We improve our previous studies by including the heavy quark (charm and beauty) contribution to the reduced cross sections, and also by considering a variable flavor scheme for the running of the coupling. We obtain a good description of the data, with the fit parameters remaining stable with respect to our previous analyses where only light quarks were considered. The inclusion of the heavy quark contributions resulted in a good description of available experimental data for the charm component of the structure function and reduced cross section provided the initial transverse distribution of heavy quarks was allowed to differ from (more specifically, to have a smaller radius than) that of the light flavors. © 2011 Springer-Verlag / Società Italiana di Fisica.

Villasante S.,Royal Swedish Academy Of Sciences | Villasante S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Do Carme Garcia-Negro M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gonzalez-Laxe F.,University of La Coruña | Rodriguez G.R.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Fish and Fisheries | Year: 2011

This paper combines official data from 1990-2007 for (i) the Total Allowable Catchs (TACs) recommended by International Council for the Exploration for the Sea (ICES) scientists and the proposed and approved TACs and (ii) biomass, recruitment, catches, fishing effort, and current exploitation rates for all marine populations subjected to TAC regulation. The differences between the fishing quotas and the scientific recommendations provided by the ICES were calculated to be 19% after the first CFP reform (1992-2001) and 21% after the second one (2002-2008). In some species, these differences showed a three-fold increase, in particular those currently considered to be beyond the biological safety limits. Regarding the most important index of abundance, the results also indicate a biomass and recruitment reduction of ∼75-85% of the stocks and 90% of catches, whereas the fishing mortality increased in 35% of stocks. In addition, of all populations analysed under TAC regulation, 20% presents an increase in the current exploitation rate, 17% did not show significant changes, and the remaining 63% presented a reduction between 1990 and 2007. These results could contribute to the recovery of stocks. However, following the methodology used by Worm et al. who reported that 6 out of the 10 (60%) marine ecosystems examined showed current exploitation rate values that were significantly higher than those that provide the maximum sustainable yield, this study demonstrates that 86% of the populations regulated by TACs present values higher than exploitation rates that give maximum sustainable yield, following an alarming pattern of exploitation. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Apolinario L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Apolinario L.,University of Lisbon | Armesto N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Salgado C.A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2012

We present a derivation of the medium-induced gluon radiation spectrum beyond the current limitation of soft gluon emission. Making use of the path integral approach to describe the propagation of high-energy particles inside a medium, we study the limiting case of a hard gluon emission. Analytical and numerical results are presented and discussed within the multiple soft scattering approximation. An ansatz interpolating between soft and hard gluon emissions is provided. The Landau-Pomeranchuk-Migdal effect is observed in the expected kinematic region. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Jokela N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Jokela N.,Instituto Galego Of Fisica Of Altas Enerxias Igfae | Lifschytz G.,Haifa University | Lippert M.,University of Amsterdam
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2013

Starting with a holographic construction for a fractional quantum Hall state based on the D3-D7' system, we explore alternative quantization conditions for the bulk gauge fields. This gives a description of a quantum Hall state with various filling fractions. For a particular alternative quantization of the bulk gauge fields, we obtain a holographic anyon fluid in a vanishing background magnetic field. We show that this system is a superfluid, exhibiting the relevant gapless excitation. © SISSA 2013.

Bautista I.,University of Lisbon | Bautista I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Milhano J.G.,University of Lisbon | Milhano J.G.,CERN | And 2 more authors.
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2012

We show that the dependence of the charged particle multiplicity on the centre-of-mass energy of the collision is, in the String Percolation Model, driven by the same power law behavior in both proton-proton and nucleus-nucleus collisions. The observed different growths are a result of energy-momentum constraints that limit the number of formed strings at low energy. Based on the very good description of the existing data, we provide predictions for future high energy LHC runs. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

de Deus J.D.,University of Lisbon | Pajares C.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2011

We compare string percolation phenomenology to Glasma results on particle rapidity densities, effective string or flux tube intrinsic correlations, the ridge phenomena and long range forward-backward correlations. Effective strings may be a tool to extend the Glasma to the low density QCD regime. A good example is given by the minimum of the negative binomial distribution parameter k expected to occur at low energy/centrality. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Santiago Gonzalez B.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rodriguez M.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Blanco C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rivas J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | And 2 more authors.
Nano Letters | Year: 2010

Gold atomic clusters of only two and three atoms were prepared by a simple electrochemical technique based on the anodic dissolution of a gold electrode in the presence of PVP, and subsequent electroreduction of the Au-PVP complexes. These clusters show stable photoluminescent and magnetic properties, which make them the smallest and most elemental gold (0) building blocks in nature (after atoms) bringing new possibilities to construct novel nano/microstructures with large potential interest in biomedicine, catalysis, and so forth. © 2010 American Chemical Society.

Jokela N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Jokela N.,Instituto Galego Of Fisica Of Altas Enerxias Igfae | Lifschytz G.,Haifa University | Lippert M.,University of Crete
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2012

We explore the magnetic properties of the Fermi-like liquid represented by the D3-D7' system. The system exhibits interesting magnetic properties such as ferromagnetism and an anomalous Hall effect, which are due to the Chern-Simons term in the effective gravitational action. We investigate the spectrum of quasi-normal modes in the presence of a magnetic field and show that the magnetic field mitigates the instability towards a striped phase. In addition, we find a critical magnetic field above which the zero sound mode becomes massive. © SISSA 2012.

Benincasa P.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Ramallo A.V.,Instituto Galego Of Fisica Of Altas Enerxias Igfae
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2012

We study the addition of quantum fermionic impurities to the N = 6 supersymmetric Chern-Simons-matter theories in 2 + 1 spacetime dimensions. The impurities are introduced by means of Wilson loops in the antisymmetric representation of the gauge group. In a holographic setup, the system is represented by considering D6-branes probing the AdS 4 × ℂℙ 3 background of type IIA supergravity. We study the thermodynamic properties of the system and show how a Kondo lattice model with holographic dimers can be constructed. By computing the Kaluza-Klein fluctuation modes of the probe brane we determine the complete spectrum of dimensions of the impurity operators. A very rich structure is found, depending both on the Kaluza-Klein quantum numbers and on the filling fraction of the impurities. © 2012 SISSA.

Bautista I.,University of Lisbon | Bautista I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Dias de Deus J.,University of Lisbon
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2013

We test the validity of the black disk limit in elastic scattering by studying the evolution of the dip in the scaling variable τ=-tDσtot, where tD is the transverse momentum squared at the dip and σtot the total cross section. As s→∞ and -tD→0, τ may consistently be approaching the black disc value, τ→s→∞τBD=35.92 GeV2mb. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

De Andres M.C.,University of Southampton | De Andres M.C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Imagawa K.,University of Southampton | Hashimoto K.,New York Medical College | And 3 more authors.
Arthritis and Rheumatism | Year: 2013

Objective To investigate whether the abnormal expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) by osteoarthritic (OA) human chondrocytes is associated with changes in the DNA methylation status in the promoter and/or enhancer elements of iNOS. Methods Expression of iNOS was quantified by quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction. The DNA methylation status of the iNOS promoter and enhancer regions was determined by bisulfite sequencing or pyrosequencing. The effect of CpG methylation on iNOS promoter and enhancer activities was determined using a CpG-free luciferase vector and a CpG methyltransferase. Cotransfections with expression vectors encoding NF-κB subunits were carried out to analyze iNOS promoter and enhancer activities in response to changes in methylation status. Results The 1,000-bp iNOS promoter has only 7 CpG sites, 6 of which were highly methylated in both control and OA samples. The CpG site at -289 and the sites in the starting coding region were largely unmethylated in both groups. The NF-κB enhancer region at -5.8 kb was significantly demethylated in OA samples compared with control samples. This enhancer element was transactivated by cotransfection with the NF-κB subunit p65, alone or together with p50. Critically, methylation treatment of the iNOS enhancer element significantly decreased its activity in a reporter assay. Conclusion These findings demonstrate the association between demethylation of specific NF-κB-responsive enhancer elements and the activation of iNOS transactivation in human OA chondrocytes, consistent with the differences in methylation status observed in vivo in normal and human OA cartilage and, importantly, show association with the OA process. © 2013 by the American College of Rheumatology.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-SICA | Phase: HEALTH-2007-2.4.1-14 | Award Amount: 3.96M | Year: 2009

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is common in both sexes, has relatively poor outcome and has no major avoidable risk factor. Recent studies have shown that common inherited single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) can increase cancer risk. We have shown CRC risk to be associated with SNPs on chromosomes 8q24.21, 15q14 and 8q21. These variants account for <5% of the genetic risk of CRC, but will be very important when their effects are added to those of other, as-yet undetected CRC SNPs. A few genome-wide association studies (GWASs) based on populations of European descent are trying to identify the remaining common CRC genes. Evidence suggests that these studies will not be large enough on their own to detect all CRC SNPs, as: relative risks associated with most SNPs are modest; some disease alleles are rare, at least in Europe; and many variants may lie outside conventional gene boundaries or haplotype blocks. The admixed LA population provides an exciting opportunity to identify new CRC genes that are more tractable to detection in LA, or have been missed by chance in European studies. We shall undertake a combined GWAS and admixture mapping study for CRC predisposition genes in 6,000 LA cases and 6,000 controls. We shall test the disease-associated variants in 3,500 cases and 3,500 controls from Europe. We aim primarily to detect SNPs with effects in both LA and Europe, but also SNPs with effects specific to LA. Eventually, we aim to develop a polymorphism panel for predicting the risk of CRC in the general population, so that those at increased risk can be offered effective measures to prevent cancer. CRC is increasing in frequency in LA and prognosis is poorer than in Europe. We shall use our project as a focus for education about CRC, especially in LA. The study will also provide training for young LA researchers. Our work will provide a direct benefit to medical science and the populations of LA and Europe.

University of Santiago de Compostela and Nanogap Inc. | Date: 2012-10-03

The invention relates to conductive inks obtained by combining AQCs and metal nanoparticles. Atomic quantum clusters (AQCs), which melt at temperatures of less than 150C, are used as low-temperature flux for the formulation of conductive inks. The combination of AQCs with bimodal and trimodal mixtures of nanoparticles of various sizes guarantees the elimination of free volumes in the final sintering of the nanoparticles in order to achieve electronic structures with very low resistivity (close to that of the bulk material) with low-temperature thermal treatments (<150C).

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2011.3.1.9-1 | Award Amount: 4.48M | Year: 2012

The European Council Directive 96/62/EC about ambient air quality assessment and management, requires to States the periodical availability of information about air quality within their territories. Nevertheless, the available methods are expensive, which prevents they can be used in a large scale. Thus, at present it is necessary to have inexpensive and robust tools for monitoring air quality across Europe. The use of mosses, due to its high efficiency in the load of both particulate and gaseous forms of organic pollutants, inorganic and radioactive, may be an optimal choice. Until now they are used as biomonitors of air quality, but recently several investigators have realized the benefits of using devitalized mosses, because it allows disposing transplants in well defined initial conditions. This really leaves the field of biomonitoring, as the material is used dead, and approximates to the setup of a new biotechnological tool. Actually biotechnological techniques allow cultivating mosses in bioreactors, so it is possible to isolate a moss clone, to cultivate it and to produce a standard material (potentially patentable) which would be comparable to the use of resins or polymers for atmospheric quality control -mosses behave as pollutant exchange resins and their use as filters has been considered for decades. For these reasons we propose the implementation of a project having as main contents: 1) selection and culture of a moss clone; 2) characterization -molecular, physical, physical-chemical and multi-elemental- of the cultivated clone; 3) large-scale production of moss-bags for transplants; 4) comparison between the data collected using moss-bags and traditional techniques (i.e. bulk deposition collectors, particles samplers and gaseous samplers) to allow tool validation; 5) to do a methodological standardization to develop a protocol for using moss-bags; and 6) to develop ta method for identification of pollution focus.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: RUR-11-2016 | Award Amount: 1.99M | Year: 2017

The overall aim of AgriDemo-F2F is to enhance peer-to-peer learning within the commercial farming community. The project will utilize the experience of different actors and involve practitioner partners throughout the project to deepen understanding of effective on farm demonstration activities (multi-actor approach). In a first step, we will conduct a geo-referenced inventory of open commercial farms that engage in demonstration activities in Europe, detailing the sectors, themes and topics on which they provide expertise, and describe the mediation techniques they apply. Case studies will be selected to perform an in-depth comparative analysis. Important dimensions in selection are: 1) a wide-spread geo-graphical coverage within Europe, 2) representative for EU-agricultural sectors, systems and territories and 3) low tech versus high tech in mediation techniques. Case studies will be described, analysed and compared on 1) their network structure (actors, roles and governance characteristics), and 2) the mechanisms and tools used for recruitment, interaction and learning. Furthermore, effectiveness of the different approaches within the case-studies will be assessed through an evaluation of the extent and nature of learning. Both regional and international multi-actor meetings will use the results of the cross comparative case study analysis to i) identify a set of best practical approaches for both the on farm demonstration of research results (science driven) and the spreading of best farming practices among practitioners (innovation driven) and ii) recommendations for AKIS governance and policies on how to support effective on farm demonstration activities. The empowerment of both the commercial farming and policy community to uptake these best practices will occur through structuring the project results and farm demo showcases on the AgriDemo-Hub, an interactive, user oriented, web-map application.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2013-ITN | Award Amount: 3.92M | Year: 2013

IN-SENS is an interdisciplinary, cutting-edge European industry-academia collaborative effort for a novel training of scientists in molecular psychiatry with the prospect of discovering the biology of schizophrenia and actively promote drug discovery. Mental illnesses are a major burden to patients, relatives, and public health worldwide. IN-SENS therefore aims to profoundly change the academic-industry research landscape in European psychiatry by an unprecedented, innovative strategy. The extended intra- and intercellular signalling pathway of disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), the best characterized gene known to cause schizophrenia and other chronic mental illnesses (CMI), will be used as a molecular Rosetta stone for this purpose. Expected results of IN-SENS include profound training, including clinical psychiatry, industrial, and translational medicine exposure, of a new generation of European ESRs capable of understanding the molecular underpinnings of CMI in academia, industry and other non-academic sectors. ESRs will explore how molecules related to the extended DISC1 pathway translate to the different biochemical, genetic, and neurodevelopmental hypotheses and data proposed so far as being important players in the molecular pathology of CMI. Further, they will play an active role in the generation of new analytical tools and therapeutic agents for the diagnosis and treatment of CMI in close collaboration with the industrial sector. IN-SENS will have immediate and longterm benefits for the European academic-industry research landscape in psychiatry by fostering scientific creativity and entrepreneurial skills of ESRs, generating novel research networks in Europe, enhancing mutual recognition and introducing novel models and of public-private cooperations. At the end of IN-SENS, exceptionally trained ESRs will be ready to extend these studies in academia and/or the private sector, and be able to move confidently to a fruitful professional career.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2013.6.3-3 | Award Amount: 11.33M | Year: 2014

The project eartH2Observe brings together the findings from European FP projects DEWFORA, GLOWASIS, WATCH, GEOWOW and others. It will integrate available global earth observations (EO), in-situ datasets and models and will construct a global water resources re-analysis dataset of significant length (several decades). The resulting data will allow for improved insights on the full extent of available water and existing pressures on global water resources in all parts of the water cycle. The project will support efficient and globally consistent water management and decision making by providing comprehensive multi-scale (regional, continental and global) water resources observations. It will test new EO data sources, extend existing processing algorithms and combine data from multiple satellite missions in order to improve the overall resolution and reliability of EO data included in the re-analysis dataset. The usability and operational value of the developed data will be verified and demonstrated in a number of case-studies across the world that aim to improve the efficiency of regional water distribution. The case-studies will be conducted together with local end-users and stakeholders. Regions of interest cover multiple continents, a variety of hydrological, climatological and governance conditions and differ in degree of data richness (e.g. the Mediterranean and Baltic region, Ethiopia, Colombia, Australia, New Zealand and Bangladesh). The data will be disseminated though an open data Water Cycle Integrator portal to ensure increased availability of global water resources information on both regional and global scale. The data portal will be the European contributor to the existing GEOSS water cycle platforms and communities. Project results will be actively disseminated using a combination of traditional methods (workshops, papers, website and conferences) and novel methods such as E-learning courses and webinars that promote the use of the developed dataset.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: OCEAN 2013.3 | Award Amount: 9.97M | Year: 2013

The BYEFOULING project will address high volume production of low toxic and environmentally friendly antifouling coatings for mobile and stationary maritime applications. The technology will fulfil the coating requirements as a result of the incorporation of novel antifouling agents and a new set of binders into coating formulations for maritime transportation and fishing vessels, floating devices and aquaculture. The main vision of BYEFOULING is to provide the means for industrial, cost-effective and robust manufacturing of antifouling coatings in Europe, where SMEs are both coating components developers and production technology providers. A set of procedures, guidelines and fabrication tools will be developed, enabling short time to market for new coating concepts. The main goal of BYEFOULING is to design, develop and upscale antifouling coatings with enhanced performance compared to current available products. The approach in BYEFOULING is to tackle the different stages of the biofouling process using innovative antifouling agents, covering surface-structured materials, protein adsorption inhibitors, quorum sensing inhibitors, natural biocides and microorganisms with antifouling properties. Encapsulation of the innovative compounds in smart nanostructured materials will be implemented to optimize coating performance and cost all along their life cycle. A proof-of-concept for the most promising candidates will be developed and demonstrators will be produced and tested on fields. BYEFOULING will combine a multidisciplinary leading research team from 11 European countries, which are already acting worldwide in the scientific community, with highly relevant and skilled technological partners, to build a consortium able to develop a full production line for antifouling coatings in Europe. Readily available low toxic and cost-effective antifouling coatings will increase the efficiency of maritime industry and be the enabling technology to realize new products.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: BSG-SME-AG | Phase: SME-2 | Award Amount: 3.63M | Year: 2010

The project will focus on three development aims: 1) development, formulation and feasibility assessment of several lower-cost alternatives for Silver nanoparticle based conductive inks 2) for these lower-cost inks finding alternatives for conventional screen printing, which allow digital printing combined with high resolution printing and enable contactless printing, which improves quality and reliability of circuits 3) demonstration of system concepts for Printed Electronics in two different application domains: a. Printing of smart packaging tags and labels, specifically for pharmaceutical applications b. High speed low cost antennas for contactless cards and RFID tags Main impact on SMEs will be: Allow SMEs to access extensive new markets and customers with large potential for revenue generation Allow SMEs to surplus their current products or product offering with remarkable, new, high-valued features that will increase (perceived) product value Provide SMEs with the information, (partnering) contacts and tools to make the transition Identify the costs/impacts involved to allow SMEs to make an informed decision.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2013.9.7 | Award Amount: 9.19M | Year: 2013

The PAMS project will explore all scientific and technological aspects of the fabrication of planar atomic and sub-molecular scale electronic devices on surfaces of Si:H, Ge:H, AlN, CaCO3 (calcite) and CaF2 with atomic scale precision and reproducibility. The sub-nanoscale devices will be made by combining ultra-precise Scanning Tunnelling Microscopy (STM) and non-contact-Atomic Force Microscopy (NC-AFM) atomic and molecular manipulation, including hydrogen extraction from passivated surfaces, controlled local doping and on-surface chemical synthesis of molecular devices and wires by coupling of precursors.\nPAMS will develop new solutions to reliably address sub-nanometer scale devices from the human scale by developing a new generation of low-temperature interconnection and manipulation machines comprising four STM/NC-AFM heads with sub- precision, allowing for contacting nanopads connected to dangling bond nanowires, doped silicon nanowires or molecular nanowires. Understanding and optimization of the electronic structures of these nanowires and of the contacts between the various components of the planar device will be one of the central objectives. The atomic and molecular devices will include dangling bond circuitries, functionalized by coupling with organic molecules, and controlled by remote alteration of molecular states by local band bending; alternatively multi-branch polyaromatic logical gates will be synthesized and addressed by up to four nanowires.\nPAMS will address the novel theoretical challenges posed by these planar devices. Accordingly, new methodological tools will be developed, allowing for a multiscale description (using from first-principles to empirical force-fields) of the structural, electronic and transport properties of such atomic and molecular devices, as well as their fabrication and characterization. These new theoretical tools will ultimately permit us to optimize the design and synthesis of atomic and molecular gates.

University of Santiago de Compostela and Nanogap Sub Nmnm Powders | Date: 2012-05-30

The present invention relates to stable atomic quantum cluster (AQC), a pharmaceutically acceptable salt, a derivative or a hydrate thereof, characterized in that said AQC, pharmaceutically acceptable salt, derivative or hydrate thereof has a thickness of less than 0.50 nm, for use as chemotherapy agent in the prevention and/or treatment of viral infections, autoimmune diseases and cell proliferative disorders, with the exclusion of breast cancer, on the human or animal body.

Nanogap Inc. and University of Santiago de Compostela | Date: 2010-11-23

The invention relates to conductive inks obtained by combining AQCs and metal nanoparticles. Atomic quantum clusters (AQCs), which melt at temperatures of less than 150 C., are used as low-temperature flux for the formulation of conductive inks. The combination of AQCs with bimodal and trimodal mixtures of nanoparticles of various sizes guarantees the elimination of free volumes in the final sintering of the nanoparticles in order to achieve electronic structures with very low resistivity (close to that of the bulk material) with low-temperature thermal treatments (<150 C.)

News Article | January 26, 2016

Researchers have used probe microscopy techniques to drive and then watch a chemical reaction proceed in both directions at a single-molecule level (Nat. Chem. 2016, DOI: 10.1038/nchem.2438). Leo Gross of IBM Research Zurich and coworkers there and at the University of Santiago de Compostela used scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) to push a molecule to react and atomic force microscopy (AFM) to image atomic-level details of that molecule as it formed radical intermediates and a final product. The technique could allow chemists to initiate radical reactions by manipulating molecules at an atomic level, the researchers say. They note that the approach could be useful not only for making new chemical reactions possible but also for assembling functional molecules for molecular electronic devices and other applications. The team chose to study a version of the Bergman cyclization, a molecular rearrangement discovered by Robert G. Bergman of the University of California, Berkeley, in 1972, while at California Institute of Technology. In the reaction, an enediyne forms a diradical intermediate that then takes on two hydrogens to form a cyclized product. Some anticancer drugs, such as calicheamicin, work by cleaving DNA through the reaction. In 2003, Felix R. Fischer and Michael F. Crommie of UC Berkeley used AFM to observe an enediyne cyclize by a similar reaction mechanism (Science 2013, DOI: 10.1126/science.1238187 and C&EN, June 3, 2013, page 7). In that work, the researchers heated the molecule to make the reaction occur. In the new study, Gross and coworkers used voltage pulses from an STM probe to break first one and then another C–Br bond in the tricyclic compound 9,10-dibromoanthracene to form mono- and then diradical intermediates. The salt surface on which the researchers ran the reaction stabilized the radicals, allowing for AFM imaging. They then used another voltage pulse to convert the diradical to a bicyclic diyne. The overall process is a ring-opening retro-Bergman reaction with an extra monoradical step that is not actually part of the Bergman mechanism. The researchers also demonstrated the reversible nature of the reaction by jolting the diyne to re-form the diradical intermediate. The IBM study “is a real breakthrough,” says Wolfram Sander of Ruhr University Bochum, a chemist who studies reaction intermediates. The ability to visualize and push the system in both reaction directions “is a great achievement,” he says. Peter Chen of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich, also a reactive intermediates expert, notes that the technique “allows the chemist to initiate the reaction of a single molecule and then see the bonding changes in that very same molecule—not quite directly, but as close to directly as one can possibly imagine. This corresponds to the state of the art of what can be achieved” with probe microscopy today. This article has been translated into Spanish by and can be found here.

SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA, SPAIN, February 28, 2017-- Dr. Juan Jose Nieto-Roig has been included in Marquis Who's Who. As in all Marquis Who's Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process.Backed by more than three and a half decades of invaluable contributions to his field, Dr. Nieto-Roig excels in his role as a professor at the Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, where he has worked since the early 1990s. Throughout his years in the field of mathematics education, he has served as a research fellow at the University of Texas at Arlington, and an associate professor at the Universidade de Santiago. Additionally, he has worked as an editor for the Journal of Mathematics Analysis and Applications, the International Journal of Biomathematics, and the Journal of The Franklin Institute, as well as numerous others.An alumnus of the alumnus of the University of Santiago de Compostela, Dr. Nieto-Roig holds a Master of Science and a Ph.D., which he earned in the early 1980s. Throughout his career, he has been celebrated numerous times for his work in the field; he has been featured in five editions of Who's Who in Science and Engineering, and 13 editions of Who's Who in the World.About Marquis Who's Who :Since 1899, when A. N. Marquis printed the First Edition of Who's Who in America , Marquis Who's Who has chronicled the lives of the most accomplished individuals and innovators from every significant field of endeavor, including politics, business, medicine, law, education, art, religion and entertainment. Today, Who's Who in America remains an essential biographical source for thousands of researchers, journalists, librarians and executive search firms around the world. Marquis publications may be visited at the official Marquis Who's Who website at

News Article | December 14, 2016

No doubt nearly everyone is familiar with the story. In early 2014, Malaysian flight MH370 left Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, on a flight to China. The flight disappeared from communication and was never found; despite great search efforts. It isn’t that there is no evidence of the crash. In July of last year, a portion of a wing was found near Madagascar and Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean. Since then, other debris has been found in the Western Indian Ocean. Using the location of where the wing debris were found, oceanographers from University of Santiago de Compostela (Spain), the United States National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the University of Miami, University of Hawaii, and the Commonwealth Science Industrial and Research Organization (CSIRO) in Australia have a lead. Their hypothesis is published in the Journal of Operational Oceanography and can be found here. The authors used two sets of data to help track the possible paths of the debris. First, they took advantage of observations from NOAA’s Global Drifter Array. These drifters have a surface float and an anchor or drogue that extend to 15m deep, and a suite of sensors that communicate via satellite their location and parameters like ocean currents, surface ocean temperature, pressure, wind, and salinity. In the Indian Ocean alone, there are approximately 400 of these drifters at any time, providing continuous ocean measurement information. At some point the drifters loose their drogue and these are the ones used in this study as they better simulate debris dynamics. The authors tracked drifters that were released or that traveled near the search area in the southeastern Indian Ocean. Several of these drifters traveled across the Indian Ocean to the final destination near Reunion Island, very near where the wing debris was found, and the duration it took the drifters to make their trek was similar to that of the debris. In addition, the authors used a computer model of ocean currents from the University of Hawaii. This model incorporated the surface ocean winds and provided a realistic simulation of ocean currents during and after the plane crash. Using these computer-derived currents, the scientists released thousands of replica drifters to see where they traveled. By combining the real trajectories from actual instruments with the simulated trajectories, scientists were able to identify the location where a crash was most likely, shown in the image below. More recent debris discoveries confirm the general westward drift predictions from the computer program and analysis. While the assessments from this study are interesting in that they are related to the MH370 accident, the techniques that the researchers developed can be used for other ocean-debris scenarios and are useful both for basic research as well as more tangible applications for societal benefits, such as search and rescue efforts, oil spills, and fish larval transports. I contacted author Joaquin Trinanes to ask about the difficulties of this project and its importance. He told me: I think it is really great to solve a basic research problem but also to connect it to practical applications. Great work, folks.

News Article | February 2, 2016

The relationship between surnames and Y chromosomes -both paternally inherited- has previously been a subject of research in Great Britain and Ireland. For the first time, a study has now explored the correlation between surnames and chromosomes in Spain using samples from over 2,000 volunteers, resulting in an inverse correlation between the frequency of the family name and the prevalence of the Y chromosome. "There is a strong relationship between the surname and the Y chromosome in Spain. The majority of men who share relatively unusual family names -those carried by less than 6,000 people in all of Spanish national territory- also tend to share an identical or very similar Y chromosome, thus demonstrating that these surname carriers descended from the same original bearers of those paternal surnames," explains Conrado Martínez-Cadenas, a researcher from the Department of Medicine at Jaume I University in Castellón and from the Human Evolutionary Genetics Group at the University of Oxford, as well as the main author of the article published in the journal European Journal of Human Genetics. Nonetheless, the analysis shows that as a surname becomes more common, the correlation with the Y chromosome gradually disappears. The data indicate that common family names do not represent men from the same family line given that all of them have different Y chromosomes. For the study, in which the Forensic Science Institute at the University of Santiago de Compostela also participated, 37 Spanish surnames were selected with the aim of providing wide geographic coverage in addition to representing a broad spectrum of frequency. Next, the surnames were classified into five groups: very common, surnames with over 150,000 bearers nationwide -Fernández, Martínez-; common, surnames with between 15,000 and 150,000 bearers nationwide -Aguirre, Díez-; uncommon, surnames with between 5,000 and 15,000 individuals -Tirado, Ibarra-; rare, surnames with between 3,000 and 5,000 bearers -Bengoechea, Cadenas-; and very rare, with between 100 and 3,000 individuals nationwide -Nortes, Albiol-. A total of 1,766 samples of DNA were collected from unrelated male volunteers representing each of the 37 surnames, and another 355 control samples were obtained. "The data show that the correlation or coancestry between the surname and the Y chromosome does not at all depend on the geographical origin (Castilian, Catalan or Basque) nor the type of surname (derived from the father's name, a place name, a profession, a nickname, a physical trait) -explains Martínez-Cadenas-. It only depends on the frequency of the surname". According to the study, the origins of the Spanish surnames date back to an estimated 536 years ago on average. However, some surnames are older than others: their ages vary between 200 and 800 years old. "This age is calculated by determining the most recent common ancestor of study participants with a particular surname. This is not the true age of the surname, however, but rather the point in time when study participants of the same surname had the most recent common ancestor in the direct male line," specifies the researcher. Prior to this study on Spanish surnames, the only detailed research conducted had analysed the relationship between surnames and the Y chromosome in Great Britain and Ireland. The researchers decided to compare these analyses in order to find similarities and differences among these three populations. They discovered that the correlation patterns between surnames and the Y chromosome in Spain were similar to those of the British study, but different from those of the Irish study. "The analyses indicate that the Irish surnames are much older than those from Spain and the United Kingdom, in addition to presenting a correlation that does not depend on surname frequency" affirms Martínez-Cadenas. "In Ireland, some very common surnames present a strong correlation between surname and the Y chromosome -something that is not observed in Spain or the United Kingdom-, while others do not," sums up the researcher. According to the study, despite the fact that Spain is a population with a historical, demographic and genetic background different from that of the British Isles, similarities with the development of British surnames suggest that the inverse correlation between the frequency of family names and the prevalence of the Y chromosome could be a general process. The development of Irish surnames, appearing in clans in which even unrelated individuals share the same surname, would be the result of more unusual, specific circumstances. More information: Conrado Martinez-Cadenas et al. The relationship between surname frequency and Y chromosome variation in Spain, European Journal of Human Genetics (2015). DOI: 10.1038/ejhg.2015.75

Bueno-Crespo A.,San Antonio de Murcia Catholic University | Garcia-Laencina P.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sancho-Gomez J.-L.,Technical University of Cartagena
Neural Networks | Year: 2013

Selection of the optimal neural architecture to solve a pattern classification problem entails to choose the relevant input units, the number of hidden neurons and its corresponding interconnection weights. This problem has been widely studied in many research works but their solutions usually involve excessive computational cost in most of the problems and they do not provide a unique solution. This paper proposes a new technique to efficiently design the MultiLayer Perceptron (MLP) architecture for classification using the Extreme Learning Machine (ELM) algorithm. The proposed method provides a high generalization capability and a unique solution for the architecture design. Moreover, the selected final network only retains those input connections that are relevant for the classification task. Experimental results show these advantages. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Xiao J.,Hunan Normal University | Nieto J.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of the Franklin Institute | Year: 2011

We use critical point theory and variational methods to investigate the solutions of a Dirichlet boundary value problem for damped nonlinear impulsive differential equations. The conditions for the existence of solution are established. © 2010 The Franklin Institute.

Carballido-Landeira J.,Free University of Colombia | Trevelyan P.M.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Almarcha C.,University of South Wales | De Wit A.,IRPHE
Physics of Fluids | Year: 2013

In a gravitational field, a horizontal interface between two miscible fluids can be buoyantly unstable because of double diffusive effects or because of a Rayleigh-Taylor instability arising when a denser fluid lies on top of a less dense one. We show here both experimentally and theoretically that, besides such classical buoyancy-driven instabilities, a new mixed mode dynamics exists when these two instabilities act cooperatively. This is the case when the upper denser solution contains a solute A, which diffuses sufficiently faster than a solute B initially in the lower layer to yield non-monotonic density profiles after contact of the two solutions. We derive parameter plane, where R is the buoyancy ratio between the two solutions and δ is the ratio of diffusion coefficient of the solutes. We find an excellent agreement of these theoretical predictions with experiments performed in Hele-Shaw cells and with numerical simulations. © 2013 American Institute of Physics.

Basiilio N.,Singular | Garcia-Rio L.,Singular | Martiin-Pastor M.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Langmuir | Year: 2012

The self-aggregation of five amphiphilic p-sulfonatocalix[n]arenes bearing alkyl chains at the lower rim was investigated by NMR spectroscopy and electrical conductivity. The critical micelle concentration was determined, and the tendency of this special class of surfactants to self-aggregate in aqueous solution was analyzed as a function of the alkyl chain length and the number of aromatic units in the macrocyclic ring. The structure of the surfactants in the monomeric and micellized states was elucidated by means of 1H NMR and, in the case of the calix[6]arene derivative, with 2D NMR experiments. While all amphiphilic calix[4]arenes studied here are blocked in the cone conformation, in the monomeric state the calix[6]arene adopts a pseudo-1,2,3-alternate conformation and the calix[8]arene is conformationally mobile. These calixarenes undergo an aggregation-induced conformational change, adopting the cone conformation in the micelles. The structure and size of the aggregates were studied by diffusion ordered spectroscopy (DOSY) experiments, and the results indicate that these surfactants self-assemble into ellipsoidal micelles. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Chen F.,Xiangnan University | Nieto J.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Zhou Y.,Xiangtan University
Nonlinear Analysis: Real World Applications | Year: 2012

We present some results for the global attractivity of solutions for fractional differential equations involving RiemannLiouville fractional calculus. The results are obtained by employing Krasnoselskii's fixed point theorem. Similar results for fractional differential equations involving Caputo fractional derivative are also obtained by using the classical Schauder's fixed point theorem. Several examples are given to illustrate our main results. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Reboredo J.C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rivera-Castro M.A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Zebende G.F.,Computational Modelling Program
Energy Economics | Year: 2014

This paper examines the relationship between oil prices and the US dollar exchange rate using detrended cross-correlation analysis. For a wide set of currencies in the periods before and since the onset of the recent global financial crisis, we characterized the oil price-exchange rate relationship at different time scales and documented two main findings. First, the cross-correlation analysis indicated that oil price-exchange rate correlations were negative and low, having in general lower values for longer time scales. Second, negative dependence between oil and the US dollar increased after the onset of the global financial crisis for all time scales, thereby providing evidence of both contagion and interdependence. This empirical evidence has important implications for monetary and fiscal policies, asset management and risk assessment. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Basilio N.,Singular | Martiin-Pastor M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Garcia-Rio L.,Singular
Langmuir | Year: 2012

In this work, we have studied the interactions between the water-soluble p-sulfonatocalix[6]arene and cationic surfactants octyltrimethylammonium bromide below the cmc and dodecyltrimethylammonium bromide above the cmc, by saturation transfer difference (STD) NMR spectroscopy. From the STD build-up curves, we have obtained the T1 independent cross relaxation rates, and the results show that the interactions established between the cationic headgroup of the surfactant and the OMe group of the macrocycle play an important role in the stabilization of the complex, both below and above the cmc. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Baranowska A.,Kazimierz Wielki University in Bydgoszcz | Fernandez B.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sadlej A.J.,Nicolaus Copernicus University
Theoretical Chemistry Accounts | Year: 2011

A detailed study of the interaction energies and interaction-induced electric dipole properties in model linear hydrogen cyanide complexes (HCN)m (m = 2-4) is carried out within the finite field HF SCF, MP2, CCSD and CCSD(T) approximations using the recently developed LPol-n (n = ds, fs, dl, fl) basis sets. The importance of high-order correlation effects and the basis set superposition error is evaluated. To correct for the latter is crucial for obtaining accurate interaction energy values, but the error can safely be neglected in the estimation of induced electric properties when the LPol-n (n = ds, fs, dl, fl) basis sets are used. Correlation effects are important in the evaluation of both the interaction energies and the induced electric properties of the systems. © 2010 The Author(s).

Villanueva-Rey P.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Vazquez-Rowe I.,CRP Henri Tudor | Moreira M.T.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Feijoo G.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2014

Viticulture is currently experiencing a gradual shift to more sustainable production practices. Many producers see in this shift an opportunity to increase their sales, especially in a context which is greatly influenced by the reduction in wine sales due to the world economic crisis. Hence, both organic and biodynamic viticulture have begun to be applied in many vineyards as alternative attractive agricultural techniques. Nevertheless, it remains unclear which are the exact environmental benefits (or drawbacks) of applying these techniques for numerous environmental impacts, such as climate change or toxicity. Therefore, the main goal of this study is to perform an environmental evaluation using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) for three different viticulture techniques within a single appellation (Ribeiro, NW Spain): biodynamic cultivation sites, conventional vineyards and an intermediate biodynamic-conventional wine-growing plantation (i.e. biodynamic site lacking certification). Moreover, two methodological improvements in the field of wine LCA studies are suggested and developed in terms of land use impact categories and labour inclusion in life-cycle thinking. Results demonstrate that biodynamic production implies the lowest environmental burdens, and the highest environmental impacts were linked to conventional agricultural practices. The main reasons for this strong decrease in environmental impacts for the biodynamic site is related to an 80% decrease in diesel inputs, due to a lower application of plant protection products and fertilisers, and the introduction of manual work rather than mechanised activities in the vineyards. Nevertheless, a series of preliminary assessments suggest that the impacts linked to land use and human labour, two under-analysed issues in wine LCA, may show different trends to those obtained for the other environmental dimensions, adding complexity to the integrated interpretation of the results. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Carlson W.,University of Witwatersrand | De Mello Koch R.,University of Witwatersrand | De Mello Koch R.,Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Studies | Lin H.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2011

In this article we study operators with a dimension δ ∼ O(N) and show that simple analytic expressions for the action of the dilatation operator can be found. The operators we consider are restricted Schur polynomials. There are two distinct classes of operators that we consider: operators labeled by Young diagrams with two long columns or two long rows. The main complication in working with restricted Schur polynomials is in building a projector from a given Sn+m irreducible representation to an Sn× Sm irreducible representation (both specified by the labels of the restricted Schur polynomial). We give an explicit construction of these projectors by reducing it to the simple problem of addition of angular momentum in ordinary non-relativistic quantum mechanics. The diagonalization of the dilatation operator reduces to solving three term recursion relations. The fact that the recursion relations have only three terms is a direct consequence of the weak mixing at one loop of the restricted Schur polynomials. The recursion relations can be solved exactly in terms of symmetric Kravchuk polynomials or in terms of Clebsch-Gordan coefficients. This proves that the dilatation operator reduces to a decoupled set of harmonic oscillators and therefore it is integrable. © SISSA 2011.

Baran Y.,Tel Aviv University | Quintela I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Carracedo A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Carracedo A.,Hospital Clinico Universitario | And 3 more authors.
American Journal of Human Genetics | Year: 2013

Characterizing the spatial patterns of genetic diversity in human populations has a wide range of applications, from detecting genetic mutations associated with disease to inferring human history. Current approaches, including the widely used principal-component analysis, are not suited for the analysis of linked markers, and local and long-range linkage disequilibrium (LD) can dramatically reduce the accuracy of spatial localization when unaccounted for. To overcome this, we have introduced an approach that performs spatial localization of individuals on the basis of their genetic data and explicitly models LD among markers by using a multivariate normal distribution. By leveraging external reference panels, we derive closed-form solutions to the optimization procedure to achieve a computationally efficient method that can handle large data sets. We validate the method on empirical data from a large sample of European individuals from the POPRES data set, as well as on a large sample of individuals of Spanish ancestry. First, we show that by modeling LD, we achieve accuracy superior to that of existing methods. Importantly, whereas other methods show decreased performance when dense marker panels are used in the inference, our approach improves in accuracy as more markers become available. Second, we show that accurate localization of genetic data can be achieved with only a part of the genome, and this could potentially enable the spatial localization of admixed samples that have a fraction of their genome originating from a given continent. Finally, we demonstrate that our approach is resistant to distortions resulting from long-range LD regions; such distortions can dramatically bias the results when unaccounted for. © 2013 The American Society of Human Genetics.

Varela-Fernandez A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Garcia-Yebra C.,University of Zaragoza | Varela J.A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Esteruelas M.A.,University of Zaragoza | Saa C.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Angewandte Chemie - International Edition | Year: 2010

[Figure Presented] The wizard of Os: Regioselective osmiumcatalyzed 7-endo heterocyclization of aromatic alkynols affords benzoxepines in good yields. The proposed catalytic cycle involves the key formation of osmiumvinylidene complexes via an alkynyl-hydride-osmium(IV) complex from the starting alkynol. © 2010 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH &. Co. KGaA.

Fidalgo M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Fraile M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Pires A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Force T.,Thomas Jefferson University | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Cell Science | Year: 2010

Mutations in CCM3/PDCD10 result in cerebral cavernous malformations (CCMs), a major cause of cerebral hemorrhage. Despite intense interest in CCMs, very little is known about the function of CCM3. Here, we report that CCM3 is located on the Golgi apparatus, forming a complex with proteins of the germinal center kinase III (GCKIII) family and GM130, a Golgi-resident protein. Cells depleted of CCM3 show a disassembled Golgi apparatus. Furthermore, in wound-healing assays, CCM3-depleted cells cannot reorient the Golgi and centrosome properly, and demonstrate impaired migration. Golgi disassembly after either depletion of CCM3 or dissociation of CCM3 from the GM130-GCKIII complex is the result of destabilization of GCKIII proteins and dephosphorylation of their substrate, 14-3-3ζ. Significantly, the phenotype induced by CCM3 depletion can be reverted by expression of wild-type CCM3, but not by diseaseassociated mutants. Our findings suggest that Golgi dysfunction and the ensuing abnormalities of cell orientation and migration resulting from CCM3 mutations contribute to CCM pathogenesis. © 2010. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

Vazquez-Rowe I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Vazquez-Rowe I.,CRP Henri Tudor | Tyedmers P.,Dalhousie University
Marine Policy | Year: 2013

Technical efficiency, uncertainties in data quality and natural fluctuations in fishing stocks constitute potential sources of fishing vessel inefficiency. Moreover, debate is on-going as to whether the skill of the fishermen ("skipper effect") is an underlying actor in fishing efficiency. Therefore, this article monitors, calculates and quantifies the inefficiency caused by the "skipper effect", if any, through the use of data envelopment analysis (DEA), with the aim of determining whether best practice target operational values in DEA, and their associated environmental impact reductions through LCA+DEA methodology, are achievable beyond the theoretical baseline they involve. A window analysis model is applied to the US menhaden fishery, a purse seining fleet with high homogeneity, since it is owned by the same company, with similar vessel and management characteristics. Results revealed relevant inefficiency levels in the four ports assessed, suggesting the existence of a "skipper effect" in all of them. Strong variances between vessels were identified, not only on an annual mean basis, but also per week of study. These variances could be attributed to random variation through time, if it were not for the fact that best performing vessels managed to repeatedly perform at high efficiency rates throughout the period. Moreover, standard deviations of low efficiency vessels were higher in all ports. Consequently, best performing targets calculated in LCA+DEA may be difficult to achieve in fleets where skipper skill strongly influences the sources of inefficiency. In these cases, the results suggest that resource minimization should be linked to specific measures to improve the individual skills of low performing vessels to attain best practice targets. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Immeln D.,Bielefeld University | Weigel A.,Humboldt University of Berlin | Kottke T.,Bielefeld University | Perez Lustres J.L.,Humboldt University of Berlin | Perez Lustres J.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2012

Photoreceptors are chromoproteins that undergo fast conversion from dark to signaling states upon light absorption by the chromophore. The signaling state starts signal transduction in vivo and elicits a biological response. Therefore, photoreceptors are ideally suited for analysis of protein activation by time-resolved spectroscopy. We focus on plant cryptochromes which are blue light sensors regulating the development and daily rhythm of plants. The signaling state of these flavoproteins is the neutral radical of the flavin chromophore. It forms on the microsecond time scale after light absorption by the oxidized state. We apply here femtosecond broad-band transient absorption to early stages of signaling-state formation in a plant cryptochrome from the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Transient spectra show (i) subpicosecond decay of flavin-stimulated emission and (ii) further decay of signal until 100 ps delay with nearly constant spectral shape. The first decay (i) monitors electron transfer from a nearby tryptophan to the flavin and occurs with a time constant of τET = 0.4 ps. The second decay (ii) is analyzed by spectral decomposition and occurs with a characteristic time constant τ1 = 31 ps. We reason that hole transport through a tryptophan triad to the protein surface and partial deprotonation of tryptophan cation radical hide behind τ1. These processes are probably governed by vibrational cooling. Spectral decomposition is used together with anisotropy to obtain the relative orientation of flavin and the final electron donor. This narrows the number of possible electron donors down to two tryptophans. Structural analysis suggests that a set of histidines surrounding the terminal tryptophan may act as proton acceptor and thereby stabilize the radical pair on a 100 ps time scale. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Baker-Austin C.,CEFAS - Center for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science | Baker-Austin C.,U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention | Trinanes J.A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Trinanes J.A.,National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration | And 4 more authors.
Nature Climate Change | Year: 2013

There is increasing concern regarding the role of climate change in driving bacterial waterborne infectious diseases. Here we illustrate associations between environmental changes observed in the Baltic area and the recent emergence of Vibrio infections and also forecast future scenarios of the risk of infections in correspondence with predicted warming trends. Using multidecadal long-term sea surface temperature data sets we found that the Baltic Sea is warming at an unprecedented rate. Sea surface temperature trends (1982-2010) indicate a warming pattern of 0.063-0.078C yr -1 (6.3-7.8C per century; refs,), with recent peak temperatures unequalled in the history of instrumented measurements for this region. These warming patterns have coincided with the unexpected emergence of Vibrio infections in northern Europe, many clustered around the Baltic Sea area. The number and distribution of cases correspond closely with the temporal and spatial peaks in sea surface temperatures. This is among the first empirical evidence that anthropogenic climate change is driving the emergence of Vibrio disease in temperate regions through its impact on resident bacterial communities, implying that this process is reshaping the distribution of infectious diseases across global scales. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Adam C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sanchez-Guillen J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sanchez-Guillen J.,University of Zaragoza | Wereszczynski A.,Jagiellonian University
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2010

Within the class of field theories with the field content of the Skyrme model, one submodel can be found which consists of the square of the baryon current and a potential term only. For this submodel, a Bogomol'nyi-Prasad- Sommerfield bound exists, and the static soliton solutions saturate this bound. Further, already on the classical level, this Bogomol'nyi-Prasad-Sommerfield Skyrme model reproduces some features of the liquid drop model of nuclei. Here, we investigate the model in more detail and, besides, we perform the rigid rotor quantization of the simplest Skyrmion (the nucleon). In addition, we discuss indications that the viability of the model as a low-energy effective field theory for QCD is further improved in the limit of a large number of colors Nc. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: NMP-12-2015 | Award Amount: 7.78M | Year: 2016

Alzheimers disease (AD) is the leading cause of dementia and loss of autonomy in the elderly, implying a progressive cognitive decline and limitation of social activities. Progressive aging of EU population will increase the magnitude of this problem in the next decades. Currently, there is not an effective method for the early diagnosis of AD. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop new effective early diagnostic and therapeutic strategies to help in delaying the appearance of the most adverse symptoms of this disease. To defeat this challenge, PANA project bases its approach on the importance of tau oligomers in the early pathophysiological processes of AD. The effective strategy will be based on two fundamental pillars; on one hand, efforts will be focused on multimodal PET/MRI imaging which is gaining relevance as the best solution for diagnostic purposes due to the complementary advantages of both technologies, combining the high structural characterization of tissue provided by MRI with the enhanced sensitivity of PET imaging. On the other hand, the challenging development of a theragnostic nanostructures will be focused on tau oligomers detection, which would have to deliver theragnostic agents into the brain to provide in situ diagnostic and therapeutic effects. Therefore, PANA project focuses on developing theranostic nanostructures that specifically recognize very-early molecular markers of AD, and can be detected by means of non-invasive imaging methodologies (MRI and/or PET, which are already common techniques accessible in most hospitals) and eventually provide a therapeutic action if needed. To achieve this goal, we propose a unique consortium which combines neuroscientists, nanotechnologists, molecular imaging experts, clinicians and Small/Medium/Large Enterprises in an effort to use smart nanoparticles engineered with multifunctional biomaterial to provide new very-early diagnostic tools for AD, a vital medical/social problem in EU.

Roiloa S.R.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Hutchings M.J.,University of Sussex
Ecological Research | Year: 2012

Clonal plants produce numerous ramets that can be distributed over a considerable area. Resources are translocated between ramets, especially when they occupy microsites of different quality, or places where leaves or roots cannot be deployed. It is common for a proportion of the ramets of clones and clonal fragments to lack roots. We conducted a greenhouse study using clonal fragments of Glechoma hederacea to examine the effects of differences in the number and position of rooted ramets on yield and plasticity of clonal fragments. We hypothesized that (1) mass of roots and root mass ratio would increase as the number of rooted ramets decreased, (2) plasticity in rooted ramets would buffer the clonal fragment against reduction in yield as the number of rooted ramets declined, (3) ramet plasticity in response to the absence of rooting, and the beneficial effects of this plasticity, would be greater when older ramets were rooted. The same yield was achieved in clonal fragments with only one out of four ramets rooted as in clonal fragments with all four of their ramets rooted, regardless of whether rooting was confined to older or younger ramets. Plasticity in biomass allocated to roots was greater in older rooted ramets succeeded by unrooted ramets than in younger rooted ramets preceded by unrooted ramets. Modular plasticity, involving both direct responses to local conditions, and indirect responses to the conditions experienced by connected modules, buffered performance against variation in rooting ability, enabling clonal fragments to maintain their yield and lateral expansion even when a high proportion of their ramets lacked roots. © 2011 The Ecological Society of Japan.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ICT-03-2016 | Award Amount: 3.89M | Year: 2017

MADIA aims at realizing a versatile and cheap diagnostic device based on magnetoresistive sensors, microfluidic device, ultrasmall Magnetic Nanoparticles (MNPs) and advanced bio-chemical functionalization methods for the early and ultrasensitive in vitro detection of biomarkers trustfully associated with 2 incurable neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimers Disease (AD) and Parkinson Disease (PD). We plan to achieve sensitivities at least three orders of magnitude higher than best state-of-the-art values flexibility to operate for a wide range of concentrations. WHY: Neurodegenerative diseases (ND) are debilitating and largely untreatable conditions that are strongly linked with age. Amongst these disorders, the dementias are responsible for the greatest burden of disease, with Alzheimers disease and related disorders affecting some 7 million people in Europe. The current costs of the order of 130 billion per annum to care for people with dementia across Europe highlight age-related neurodegenerative disease as one of the largest medical and societal challenges faced by our society. PD is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder worldwide after AD. WHAT: The operation principle behind the proposed tool embodies a Magnetic Sensor Assay approach and consists of recognizing the targeted core and downstream biomarkers obtained from body fluids (such as cerebrospinal fluid - CSF and blood) through their complexation with nano-magnetic labels (MNPs) followed by a highly sensitive magnetic detection at micro-scales. The specific recognition of the protein by the magnetic nanoparticles will be achieved and ensured via protein bonding to functionalizing groups grafted on the surface of the MNP. The complexes MNP-BM will be injected into microfluidics channels flowing in the close vicinity of magnetic sensors, bringing thus the MNP-BM to distances where the magnetic field of the MNP will trigger a quantitatively detectable sensor response.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-RISE | Phase: MSCA-RISE-2016 | Award Amount: 711.00K | Year: 2017

Nowadays, among of the main challenges in the rational and efficient use of the energy, the energy harvesting, energy saving and energy conversion are key points in the research and application of electronic devices. The optimization of device performances making them more powerful with less energy consumption while keeping an affordable production cost is mandatory. The present project will address those challenges by means of designing suitable materials for implementing on devices able to reduce the energy consumption. Nanotechnology, Oxide and Superconducting Spintronics will be the competitive edge technologies triggering the interconnection and cooperation between international labs and technological companies, from Europe and overseas by means of sharing knowledge, cross-linked working and innovation, gaining capacities towards this mission. SPICOLOST project will tackle this challenge with two parallel approaches: i) with suitable heterostructures with high efficiency conversion of thermal energy in electricity, taking the advantage of harvesting, the so called thermoelectric thermopile device based on Seebeck and Spin Seebeck Effects; and ii) producing multicomponent nanostructured materials for magneto-electronic and superconducting devices capable of fast signal processing minimizing the energy dissipation by control the magnetic switching, and then consuming less energy. It is expected to produce advances in experimental fabrication processes, better control of interface properties of hybrid heterostructures and explaining them with suitable theoretical framework that conduct to novel discoveries due to the synergy between Superconducting and Spintronic.

News Article | September 8, 2016

The discovery of the structure of DNA in 1953 made it immediately obvious how DNA could be copied, or replicated. The three-dimensional structure of PrPSc has remained elusive, but the hope is that its discovery would likewise promote the understanding of prion replication, as well as lead to the development of structure-based therapeutic interventions. Convinced that the structure of what they call 'infectious conformers'—PrPSc from the brain of diseased animals—will be most informative, a team led by Holger Wille and Howard Young from the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, and Jesús Requena from the University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain, is applying electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM) to the problem. In this study, they used cryo-EM to record and analyze the structure of PrPSc isolated from the brain of infected mice. Prion-infected mouse and human brains contain a mix of different versions of PrPSc because different types of molecules such as lipids and sugars have been attached to the core protein. The heterogeneity of these modified brain-derived PrPSc makes it difficult to analyze their structure. To avoid this difficulty, the researchers started with PrPSc molecules that were truncated to delete the attachment of one type of modification, the so-called GPI lipid anchor. By using as a source the brains of transgenic mice expressing a GPI-anchorless form of the prion protein, they were able to analyze a more homogeneous version of PrPSc that nonetheless retained its ability to cause disease and convert normal cellular prion proteins. In the diseased brain, PrPSc molecules are often arranged in fibrils. The cryo-EM images of the mouse GPI-anchorless PrPSc fibrils, and their subsequent analysis, showed that they consist of two intertwined protofilaments of defined volume. As cryo-EM preserves the native structure of specimens, this information sets a structural restraint for the conformation of GPI-anchorless PrPSc, with the implication that PrPSc molecules can form protofilaments with the observed dimensions only if they are folded up onto themselves. Based on their own analyses (and consistent with data from related studies), the researchers conclude that the cryo-EM data reveal a four-rung ß-solenoid architecture as the basic element for the structure of the mammalian prion GPI-anchorless PrPSc. ß-solenoids are protein structures that consist of an array of repetitive elements with secondary structures that are predominantly beta sheets. These PrPSc beta-sheet rungs, the researchers propose, serve as templates for new unfolded PrPSc molecules. What they have learned about the structure of GPI-anchorless PrPSc and its four-rung ß solenoid architecture, the researchers say, allows them to rule out all previously proposed templating mechanisms for the replication of infectious prions in vivo. Discussing their ideas for the conversion of PrPC to PrPSc, the researchers note that the molecular forces responsible for the templating are fundamentally similar to those operating during the replication of DNA. "Because the exquisite specificity of the A:T and G:C pairings is lacking", they conclude that "a much more complex array of forces controls the pairing of the pre-existing and nascent ß-rungs". "Templating based on a four-rung ß-solenoid architecture", they say, "must involve the upper- and lowermost ß-solenoid rungs [which] are inherently aggregation-prone". "Once an additional ß-rung has formed", they propose, "it creates a fresh "sticky" edge ready to continue templating until the incoming unfolded PrP molecule has been converted into another copy of the infectious conformer". The researchers acknowledge that higher resolution structures and resolution of structures of other PrPSc molecules will be needed. Nonetheless, they conclude, "we present data based on cryo-EM analysis that strongly support the notion that GPI-anchorless PrPSc fibrils consist of stacks of four-rung ß-solenoids. Two of such protofilaments intertwine to form double fibrils [...]. The four-rung ß-solenoid architecture of GPI-anchorless PrPSc provides unique and novel insights into the molecular mechanism by which mammalian prions replicate". More information: Vázquez-Fernández E, Vos MR, Afanasyev P, Cebey L, Sevillano AM, Vidal E, et al. (2016) The Structural Architecture of an Infectious Mammalian Prion Using Electron Cryomicroscopy. PLoS Pathog 12(9): e1005835. DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1005835

Senis Y.,University of Birmingham | Garcia A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Methods in Molecular Biology | Year: 2012

Platelets pose unique challenges to cell biologists due to their lack of nucleus and low levels of messenger RNA. Platelets cannot be cultured in great abundance or manipulated using common recombinant DNA technologies. As a result, platelet research has lagged behind that of nucleated cells. The advent of mass spectrometry and its application to protein biochemistry brought with it great hopes for the platelet community that are now being realized. This technology is ideally suited for identifying low-abundance proteins, protein-protein interactions, and post-translational modifications in complex protein mixtures. Over the past 10 years, proteomics has delivered in many ways, providing platelet biologists with a comprehensive list of proteins expressed in platelets, information on post-translational modifications, protein interactions and sub-cellular localization. Several novel and important platelet membrane proteins, including CLEC-2, CD148, G6b-B, G6f, and Hsp47, have been identified using proteomics-based approaches. New, more sensitive instrumentation and novel approaches are making it increasingly possible to identify ever lower amounts of proteins. In this chapter we highlight some of the major achievements of platelet proteomics to date, discussing challenges and how they were overcome. We also discuss new frontiers and applications of proteomics to platelets and microparticles in health and disease, as we strive to better understand the molecular mechanisms underlying the platelet response to vascular injury. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Baranowska A.,Nicolaus Copernicus University | Baranowska A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Sadlej A.J.,Nicolaus Copernicus University
Journal of Computational Chemistry | Year: 2010

We report on the development and testing of large polarized basis sets (LPolX, where X is the element symbol) for accurate calculations of linear and nonlinear electric properties of molecules. The method used to generate LPolX sets is based on our studies of the analytic dependence of Gaussian functions on external time-independent and time-dependent electric fields. At variance with the earlier investigations of small, highly compact (ZPolX) basis sets for moderately accurate calculations of electric properties of large molecules, the present goal is to obtain basis sets that are nearly saturated with respect to the selected class of electric properties and can be used for accurate studies of interaction-induced properties. This saturation makes the LPolX sets also useful in calculations of optical properties for chiral molecules. In this article, the LPolX sets are generated for X = H, C, N, O, and F, and examined in calculations of linear and nonlinear electric properties of four standard test systems: HF, N 2, CO, and HCN. The study of the performance of LPolX basis sets has been carried out at different levels of approximation ranging from the SCF HF method to highly correlated CCSD(T) approach. The results obtained in this study compare favorably with accurate reference data and show a high level of saturation of LPolX basis sets with respect to the polarization effect due to external electric fields. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Herva M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Alvarez A.,Industrias de Diseno Textil S.A. | Roca E.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Hazardous Materials | Year: 2012

Two environmental evaluation methodologies, namely energy and materials flow analysis (EMFA) and ecological footprint (EF), were combined to assess a tailoring factory that produced jackets in the period 2002-2005. During the EMFA, aided by the software Umberto® 5.5, cutting was identified as the most energy consuming stage and gas-oil as an important source of pollution in spite of its low contribution to energy supply. The EF appraisal was built on the basis of a previous work, incorporating methodological contributions developed by the authors that made the indicator more suitable for its application at corporate level. Initially, an increasing tendency in the indicator was observed (from 37.8 in 2002 to 45.2gm2/jacket in 2005). When including other emissions apart from CO2, the results conveyed a significant increase in EF that ranged from 80% in 2002 to 14% in 2004, demonstrating that this contribution should not be disregarded when evaluating production processes. Finally, sensitivity analyses were carried out to assess the influence in the EF of the variability in input variables. When emissions were not included, the most influencing input flow was the cotton fabric; otherwise gas-oil became the most relevant factor. Therefore, its substitution for cleaner sources of energy was advised. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Fan Y.,Rutgers University | Miguez-Macho G.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences | Year: 2010

Climate and land ecosystem models simulate a dry-season vegetation stress in the Amazon forest, but observations do not support these results, indicating adequate water supply. Proposed mechanisms include larger soil water store and deeper roots in nature and the ability of roots to move water up and down (hydraulic redistribution), both absent in the models. Here we provide a first-order assessment of the potential importance of the upward soil water flux from the groundwater driven by capillarity. We present a map of equilibrium water table depth from available observations and a groundwater model simulation constrained by these observations. We then present a map of maximum capillary flux these water table depths, combined with the fine-textured soils in the Amazon, can potentially support. The maps show that the water table beneath the Amazon can be shallow in lowlands and river valleys (<5 m in 36% and <10 m in 60% of Amazonia). These water table depths can potentially accommodate a maximum capillary flux of 2.1 mm day'1 to the land surface averaged over Amazonia, but varies from 0.6 to 3.7 mm day'1 across nine study sites. We note that the results presented here are based on limited observations and simple equilibrium model calculations, and as such, have important limitations and must be interpreted accordingly. The potential capillary fluxes are not indicative of their contribution to the actual evapotranspiration, and they are only an assessment of the possible rate at which this flux can occur, to illustrate the power of soil capillary force acting on a shallow water table in fine textured soils. They may over-estimate the actual flux where the surface soils remain moist. Their contribution to the actual evapotranspiration can only be assessed through fully coupled model simulation of the dynamic feedbacks between soil water and groundwater with sub-daily climate forcing. The equilibrium water table obtained here serves as the initial state for the dynamic simulation, and together with the equilibrium potential capillary flux, will serve as a baseline to evaluate the diurnal, event, seasonal and inter-annual dynamics. © 2010 Author(s).

Nie L.,Xinjiang University | Teng Z.,Xinjiang University | Torres A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Nonlinear Analysis: Real World Applications | Year: 2012

An SIR epidemic model with state dependent pulse vaccination is proposed in this paper. Using the Poincar map, the differential inequality and the method of qualitative analysis, we prove the existence and the stability of positive order-1 or order-2 periodic solution for this model. Moreover, we show that there is no periodic solution with order larger than or equal to three. Numerical simulations are carried out to illustrate the feasibility of our main results and the suitability of state dependent pulse vaccination is also discussed. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Fioravanti D.,University of Bologna | Grinza P.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rossi M.,National Institute of Nuclear Physics, Italy
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2010

In the high spin limit the minimal anomalous dimension of (fixed) twist operators in the sl (2) sector of planar N = 4 Super Yang-Mills theory expands as γ (g, s, L) = f (g) ln s + fsl (g, L) + ∑n = 1 ∞ γ(n) (g, L) × (ln s)- n + ⋯. We find that the sub-logarithmic contribution γ(n) (g, L) is governed by a linear integral equation, depending on the solution of the linear integral equations appearing at the steps n′ ≤ n - 3. We work out this recursive procedure and determine explicitly γ(n) (g, L) (in particular γ(1) (g, L) = 0 and γ(n) (g, 2) = γ(n) (g, 3) = 0). Furthermore, we connect the γ(n) (g, L) (for finite L) to the generalised scaling functions, fn (r) (g), appearing in the limit of large twist L ∼ ln s. Finally, we provide the first orders of weak and strong coupling for the first γ(n) (g, L) (and hence fn (r) (g)). © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Fioravanti D.,University of Bologna | Grinza P.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rossi M.,National Institute of Nuclear Physics, Italy
Nuclear Physics B | Year: 2010

A method for determining the generalised scaling functions fn (g) arising in the high spin behaviour of long operator anomalous dimensions in the planar sl (2) sector of N = 4 SYM is proposed. The all-order strong coupling expansion is detailed for the prototypical third and fourth scaling functions (f3 (g), f4 (g), respectively) and - together with high-precision numerical computations - reveals itself as crucial for disentangling the emergence of the O (6) Non-Linear Sigma Model mass-gap from different SYM 'mass' functions. Remarkably, only the fourth one gains contribution from the non-BES reducible densities and also shows up, as first, NLSM interaction and specific model dependence. Finally, the computation of the n-th generalised function is sketched and might be easily finalised for checks versus the computations in the sigma model or the complete string theory. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Adrio L.A.,University of Oviedo | Adrio L.A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gimeno J.,University of Oviedo | Vicent C.,Jaume I University
Chemical Communications | Year: 2013

The inexpensive and commercially available catalytic system RuCl 3·nH2O-NaOAc-Zn is active in water for the direct C-H arylation of arenes with aryl/heteroaryl chlorides. The reaction can be accelerated by the use of microwave irradiation and can also be scaled up to a multi-gram scale with excellent isolated yields. © 2013 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Santamaria R.C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Marino M.,University of Geneva | Putrov P.,University of Geneva
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2011

We study various aspects of the matrix models calculating free energies and Wilson loop observables in supersymmetric Chern-Simons-matter theories on the threesphere. We first develop techniques to extract strong coupling results directly from the spectral curve describing the large N master field. We show that the strong coupling limit of the gauge theory corresponds to the so-called tropical limit of the spectral curve. In this limit, the curve degenerates to a planar graph, and matrix model calculations reduce to elementary line integrals along the graph. As an important physical application of these tropical techniques, we study N = 3 theories with fundamental matter, both in the quenched and in the unquenched regimes. We calculate the exact spectral curve in the Veneziano limit, and we evaluate the planar free energy and Wilson loop observables at strong coupling by using tropical geometry. The results are in agreement with the predictions of the AdS duals involving tri-Sasakian manifolds. © SISSA 2011.

Nogueiras-Nieto L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Nogueiras-Nieto L.,University of Bath | Begona Delgado-Charro M.,University of Bath | Otero-Espinar F.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics | Year: 2013

This work investigated the use of in situ gelling hydrogels based on polypseudorotaxanes of Pluronic F-127 and partially methylated β-cyclodextrin as aqueous nail lacquers. N-acetylcysteine and urea were incorporated as penetration enhancers. The formulations were tested for their ability to deliver ciclopirox and triamcinolone across human nail plate and bovine hoof. Simple aqueous solutions of the drugs with N-acetylcysteine provided measurable fluxes across hoof membranes but became quickly depleted of drug. Further, these solutions would have a short residence time upon nail application. Addition of Pluronic F-127 facilitated drug solubilization and provided the formulations with in situ gelling properties but drug entrapment into the micelles slowed down the delivery process. This was solved by addition of methylated β-cyclodextrin; the formulations retained the thermogelling properties, drug solubilization was further increased, and drug delivery was accelerated. The polymer chains compete with the drugs for the cyclodextrin cavity forming polypseudorotaxanes, which facilitated drug release. The permeability of both drugs was higher across bovine hoof than human nail. The new polypseudorotaxanes formulation delivered more ciclopirox across human nail than a marketed organic lacquer which supports the growing hypothesis that aqueous-based nail lacquers represent a superior formulation strategy in nail topical delivery. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Pokhrel Y.N.,Rutgers University | Fan Y.,Rutgers University | Miguez-Macho G.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Yeh P.J.-F.,International Center for Water Hazard and Risk Management | Han S.-C.,NASA
Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres | Year: 2013

We explore the mechanisms whereby groundwater influences terrestrial water storage (TWS) in the Amazon using GRACE observations and two contrasting versions of the LEAF-Hydro-Flood hydrological model: one with and the other without an interactive groundwater. We find that, first, where the water table is shallow as in northwestern Amazonia and floodplains elsewhere, subsurface stores (vadose zone and groundwater) are nearly saturated year-round, hence river and flooding dominate TWS variation; where the water table is deep as in southeastern Amazonia, the large subsurface storage capacity holds the infiltrated water longer before releasing it to streams, hence the subsurface storage dominates TWS variation. Second, over the whole Amazon, the subsurface water contribution far exceeds surface water contribution to total TWS variations. Based on LEAF-Hydro-Flood simulations, 71% of TWS change is from subsurface water, 24% from flood water, and 5% from water in river channels. Third, the subsurface store includes two competing terms, soil water in the vadose zone and groundwater below the water table. As the water table rises, the length of vadose zone is shortened and hence the change in groundwater store is accompanied by an opposite change in soil water store resulting in their opposite phase and contributions to total TWS. We conclude that the inclusion of a prognostic groundwater store and its interactions with the vadose zone, rivers, and floodplains in hydrological simulations enhances seasonal amplitudes and delays seasonal peaks of TWS anomaly, leading to an improved agreement with GRACE observations. ©2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

Miguez-Macho G.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Fan Y.,Rutgers University
Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres | Year: 2012

Observational studies across the Amazon report a common occurrence of shallow water table in lowland valleys and groundwater-surface water exchange from small headwater catchments to large floodplains. In this study, we assess groundwater's role in the Amazon surface water dynamics using a continental-scale coupled groundwater-surface water model (LEAF-Hydro-Flood) forced by ERA-Interim reanalysis, at 2km and 4min resolution over 11years (2000-2010). The simulation is validated with observed streamflow, water table depth and flooding extent. A parallel simulation without groundwater is conducted to isolate its effect. Our findings support the following hypotheses. First, in the headwater catchments, groundwater dominates streamflow; the observed variations in its dominance across the Amazon can be explained by the varying water table depth. Second, over large floodplains, there are two-way exchanges between floodwater and groundwater as infiltration in the wet season and seepage in the dry season, and the direction and magnitude are controlled by the water table depth. Third, the Amazon harbors large areas of wetlands that are rarely under floodwater and difficult to observe by remote sensing, but are maintained by a persistently shallow water table. Fourth, due to its delayed and muted response to rainfall, groundwater seepage persists in the dry season, buffering surface waters through seasonal droughts. Our simulations shed new lights on the spatial-temporal structures of the hidden subsurface hydrologic pathways across the Amazon and suggest possible mechanisms whereby groundwater actively participates in the Amazon water-carbon cycle such as CO2 outgassing from groundwater seeps and CH4 emission from groundwater-supported wetlands. © 2012. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

Gavilan R.G.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Gavilan R.G.,Institute for Scientific Research and Technology Services INDICASAT | Zamudio M.L.,Instituto Nacional Of Salud | Martinez-Urtaza J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Martinez-Urtaza J.,U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention
PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases | Year: 2013

Vibrio parahaemolyticus is a foodborne pathogen that has become a public health concern at the global scale. The epidemiological significance of V. parahaemolyticus infections in Latin America received little attention until the winter of 1997 when cases related to the pandemic clone were detected in the region, changing the epidemic dynamics of this pathogen in Peru. With the aim to assess the impact of the arrival of the pandemic clone on local populations of pathogenic V. parahaemolyticus in Peru, we investigated the population genetics and genomic variation in a complete collection of non-pandemic strains recovered from clinical sources in Peru during the pre- and post-emergence periods of the pandemic clone. A total of 56 clinical strains isolated in Peru during the period 1994 to 2007, 13 strains from Chile and 20 strains from Asia were characterized by Multilocus Sequence Typing (MLST) and checked for the presence of Variable Genomic Regions (VGRs). The emergence of O3:K6 cases in Peru implied a drastic disruption of the seasonal dynamics of infections and a shift in the serotype dominance of pathogenic V. parahaemolyticus. After the arrival of the pandemic clone, a great diversity of serovars not previously reported was detected in the country, which supports the introduction of additional populations cohabitating with the pandemic group. Moreover, the presence of genomic regions characteristic of the pandemic clone in other non-pandemic strains may represent early evidence of genetic transfer from the introduced population to the local communities. Finally, the results of this study stress the importance of population admixture, horizontal genetic transfer and homologous recombination as major events shaping the structure and diversity of pathogenic V. parahaemolyticus. © 2013 Gavilan et al.

Herva M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Alvarez A.,Industrias de Diseno Textil S.A. | Roca E.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Hazardous Materials | Year: 2011

The ecodesign of a product implies that different potential environmental impacts of diverse nature must be taken into account considering its whole life cycle, apart from the general design criteria (i.e. technical, functional, ergonomic, aesthetic or economic). In this sense, a sustainability assessment methodology, ecological footprint (EF), and environmental risk assessment (ERA), were combined for the first time to derive complementary criteria for the ecodesign of footwear.Four models of children′s shoes were analyzed and compared. The synthetic shoes obtained a smaller EF (6.5gm 2) when compared to the leather shoes (11.1gm 2). However, high concentrations of hazardous substances were detected in the former, even making the Hazard Quotient (HQ) and the Cancer Risk (CR) exceed the recommended safety limits for one of the synthetic models analyzed. Risk criteria were prioritized in this case and, consequently, the design proposal was discarded. For the other cases, the perspective provided by the indicators of different nature was balanced to accomplish a fairest evaluation.The selection of fibers produced under sustainable criteria and the reduction of the materials consumption was recommended, since the area requirements would be minimized and the absence of hazardous compounds would ensure safety conditions during the use stage. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Fan Y.,Rutgers University | Miguez-Macho G.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Climate Dynamics | Year: 2011

Wetlands are ecosystems of important functions in the earth's climate system. Through relatively high evapotranspiration, they affect surface water and energy exchange with the atmosphere directly influencing the physical climate. Through CH4, CO2 and N2O fluxes, they regulate the biogeochemical cycles, indirectly influencing the physical climate. However, current models do not explicitly include the water table, present under all large and stable wetlands; model wetlands are identified as flat land with wet soil resulting from precipitation events. That is, the wetlands are only 'wetted' from above but not from below by the high water table. Furthermore, without the knowledge of the water table position, estimates of CH4 and other gases (e.g., CO2 and N2O) are poorly constrained. We present a simple hydrologic framework for simulating wetlands based on water table depth. A synthesis of hydrologic controls on wetlands highlights the key role that groundwater plays. It directly feeds wetlands, supports surface-water fed wetlands by maintaining a saturated substrate, and links land drainage to sea level by impeding drainage in lowlands. Forced by routine climate model output (precipitation-evapotranspiration-surface runoff), land topography, and sea level, we simulate the present-day water table in North America at the 1 km scale. We validate the simulation with water table observations and compare regions of shallow water table to mapped wetlands. Our results show that the framework captures the salient features of wetland distribution and extent at regional and continental scales, a direct result of large-scale groundwater convergence that nourishes the lowlands even in arid climates. The low requirement of forcing and computation make the framework easy to adopt in climate and earth system models for simulating wetland responses to climate and sea level change for the present, paleo reconstructions, and future projections. © 2010 The Author(s).

Rodriguez D.,University of Stockholm | Rodriguez D.,Swedish ience Research Center | Brea J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Loza M.I.,University of Santiago de Compostela | And 2 more authors.
Structure | Year: 2014

Summary The development of safe and effective drugs relies on the discovery of selective ligands. Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]) G protein-coupled receptors are therapeutic targets for CNS disorders but are also associated with adverse drug effects. The determination of crystal structures for the 5-HT 1B and 5-HT2B receptors provided an opportunity to identify subtype selective ligands using structure-based methods. From docking screens of 1.3 million compounds, 22 molecules were predicted to be selective for the 5-HT1B receptor over the 5-HT2B subtype, a requirement for safe serotonergic drugs. Nine compounds were experimentally verified as 5-HT1B-selective ligands, with up to 300-fold higher affinities for this subtype. Three of the ligands were agonists of the G protein pathway. Analysis of state-of-the-art homology models of the two 5-HT receptors revealed that the crystal structures were critical for predicting selective ligands. Our results demonstrate that structure-based screening can guide the discovery of ligands with specific selectivity profiles. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Rozas V.,CSIC - Institute of Refrigeration | Garcia-Gonzalez I.,University of Santiago de Compostela
International Journal of Biometeorology | Year: 2012

The properties of El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), such as period, amplitude, and teleconnection strength to extratropical regions, have changed since the mid-1970s. ENSO affects the regional climatic regime in SW Europe, thus tree performance in the Iberian Peninsula could be affected by recent ENSO dynamics. We established four Quercus robur chronologies of earlywood and latewood widths in the NW Iberian Peninsula. The relationship between tree growth and the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), the atmospheric expression of ENSO, showed that only latewood growth was correlated negatively with the SOI of the previous summer-autumn-winter. This relationship was non-stationary, with significant correlations only during the period 1952-1980; and also non-linear, with enhanced latewood growth only in La Niña years, i. e. years with a negative SOI index for the previous autumn. Non-linear relationship between latewood and SOI indicates an asymmetric influence of ENSO on tree performance, biassed towards negative SOI phases. During La Niña years, climate in the study area was warmer and wetter than during positive years, but only for 1952-1980. Winter temperatures became the most limiting factor for latewood growth since 1980, when mean regional temperatures increased by 1°C in comparison to previous periods. As a result, higher winter respiration rates, and the extension of the growing season, would probably cause an additional consumption of stored carbohydrates. The influence of ENSO and winter temperatures proved to be of great importance for tree growth, even at lower altitudes and under mild Atlantic climate in the NW Iberian Peninsula. © 2011 ISB.

Basilio N.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Garcia-Rio L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Moreira J.A.,University of Algarve | Pessego M.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Organic Chemistry | Year: 2010

(Chemical Equation Presented) To understand the analogies and differences between the cucurbituril and cyclodextrin cavities different solvolytic reactions have been studied in the presence of cucurbit[7]uril, CB7, and β-CD or its methylated derivative, DM-β-CD. Solvolysis of 1-bromoadamantane has been used as a test to evaluate the ability of the cavities to solvate the Br- leaving group. Obtained results show that in both cases the polarity inside the cavity is similar to that of a 70% ethanol:water mixture. Solvolysis of substituted benzoyl chlorides shows a great difference between the CB7 and DM-β-CD cavity. Solvolysis of electron withdrawing substituted benzoyl chlorides (associative mechanism) is catalyzed by DM-β-CD and inhibited by CB7. However, solvolysis of electron donating substituted benzoyl chlorides (dissociative mechanism) is catalyzed by CB7 and inhibited by DM-β-CD. These experimental behaviors have been explained on the basis of different solvolytic mechanisms. Participation of the hydroxyl groups of the cyclodextrin as a nucleophile can explain the catalytic effect observed for solvolysis of benzoyl chlorides reacting by an associative mechanism. Solvolysis of benzoyl chlorides reacting by a dissociative mechanism is catalyzed by CB7 due to the ability of the CB7 cavity to stabilize the acylium ion developed in the transition state by electrostatic interactions. © 2010 American Chemical Society.

Miguez-Macho G.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Fan Y.,Rutgers University
Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres | Year: 2012

We investigate the potential influence of groundwater on seasonal evapotranspiration (ET) in the Amazon using a coupled groundwater-surface water model (LEAF-Hydro-Flood) forced with ERA-Interim reanalysis, at 2km grid and 4min steps over 11yrs (2000-2010), and validated with available soil moisture and ET observations. We find that first, the simulated water table is<2m deep over a significant portion of the Amazon (20-40%). Second, shallow groundwater can reduce wet season soil drainage, leading to larger soil water stores before the dry season arrives. Third, capillary rises from the water table can reach the root zone and maintain high dry season ET near the valleys. Fourth, groundwater's delayed response to rainfall can buffer surface stress in the dry season, when groundwater is the shallowest. Fifth, this temporal delay can be seen as spatial patterns; continued drainage and convergence maintain moist valleys forming a structured mosaic of wet-dry patches in the dry season. Results from two parallel runs, with and without groundwater, suggest that overall groundwater made a large difference in modeled soil moisture where the water table is shallow, but it only made a difference in modeled ET where the seasonality is strong; over southeastern Amazonia, July-August ET differs by ∼1mm/day. We note that our results are based on model simulations, which only suggest the potential importance of the groundwater system to the Amazon water cycle. The ultimate knowledge must come from carefully designed field observations linking vegetation, soil and groundwater with water balance studies and tracer tests, across a range of physical-biological settings. © 2012. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: KBBE.2010.3.2-01 | Award Amount: 4.34M | Year: 2011

Innovation is the most important engine of growth and jobs in knowledge-based bio-economies. The scope of BAMMBO (Biologically Active Molecules of Marine Based Origin) is ambitious. This is intentional. BAMMBO will provide innovative solutions to overcome existing bottle-necks associated with culturing marine organisms in order to sustainably produce high yields of value-added products for the pharmaceutical, cosmetic and industrial sectors. BAMMBO will screen and identify target marine organisms (e.g. bacteria, fungi, sponges, microalgae, macroalgae and yeasts) from diverse global locations for potential as sustainable producers of highadded value molecules (HVABs). Our project will apply analytical methods for the extraction, purification and enrichment of targeted bioactive compounds. A detailed life cycle analysis of the production pathways developed in the project will be undertaken to fully evaluate the sustainability of production of biologically active products from marine organisms. BAMMBO will exploit knowledge and technologies developed during the project and effectively manage their transfer to relevant stakeholders in industry and the research community, as well as to policy-makers. We have brought together a multidisciplinary consortium of specialist Research and SME partners representing 8 countries including partners from ICPC countries Russia and Brazil, and from EU member states at Mediterranean, Adriatic and Atlantic coasts. In adhering to the European Strategy for Marine and Maritime Research this three year project will encourage capacity-building, integration and synergies across relevant marine sectors. Innovative technologies developed in the project will be demonstrated with the involvement of industry partners, and the results will be of interest not only to companies directly involved in the marine sector, but to other large scale industry players such as pharmaceutical companies with interest in added-value bioactive compounds.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2011-ITN | Award Amount: 4.30M | Year: 2011

The principal aim of this ITN is to examine the history of the transatlantic slave trade and its legacies from a variety of different angles. The idea is to hire thirteen Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) and two Experienced Researchers (ERs) across Europe and a wide range of disciplines, including history, archaeology, sociology, heritage studies and genetics, to investigate various aspects of the slave trade and its legacies today. By bringing in experts from these various fields, including some that are not traditionally associated with slave trade research, such as genetics, we hope to contribute new data that will add to our knowledge of how the slave trade operated and how it impacted on the lives of millions of people. Furthermore, we believe that this setup presents a unique opportunity to deliver a training package that will encourage interdisciplinary thinking and help us to bridge the gap between what C.P. Snow called the two cultures of modern society - the sciences and the humanities.2 Working together on a common theme, a team of historians, archaeologists, sociologists and ge- neticists will examine various aspects of the slave trade that will increase our understanding of this horrific period in our history and, thus, help us to come to terms with it. Last but not least, we aim to disseminate the results of our various projects as widely as possible and we believe that the unique combination of history and science will en- able us to reach a much broader spectrum of the general public than hitherto possible.

University of Santiago de Compostela, Fundacion Pedro Barrie De La Maza and Fundacion Publica Galega De Medicina Xenomica | Date: 2012-01-06

Methods for diagnosing follicular thyroid cancer, providing a prognosis for follicular thyroid cancer, and monitoring treatment of follicular thyroid cancer, using biomarkers that are differentially expressed in follicular thyroid cancer are provided.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2007.5.2 | Award Amount: 5.87M | Year: 2008

Serious adverse effects resulting from the treatment with thalidomide prompted modern drug legislation more than 40 years ago. Post-marketing spontaneous reporting systems for suspected adverse drug reactions (ADRs) have been a cornerstone to detect safety signals in pharmacovigilance. It has become evident that adverse effects of drugs may be detected too late, when millions of persons have already been exposed.In this project, an alternative approach for the detection of ADR signals will be developed. Rather than relying on the physicians capability and willingness to recognize and report suspected ADRs, the system will systematically calculate the occurrence of disease (potentially ADRs) during specific drug use based on data available in electronic patient records. In this project, electronic health records (EHRs) of over 30 million patients from several European countries will be available. In an environment where rapid signal detection is feasible, rapid signal assessment is equally important. To rapidly assess signals, a number of resources will be used to substantiate the signals: causal reasoning based on information in the EHRs, semantic mining of the biomedical literature, and computational analysis of biological and chemical information (drugs, targets, anti-targets, SNPs, pathways, etc.).The overall objective of this project is the design, development and validation of a computerized system that exploits data from electronic healthcare records and biomedical databases for the early detection of adverse drug reactions. The EU-ADR system will generate signals using data and text mining, epidemiological and other computational techniques, and subsequently substantiate these signals in the light of current knowledge of biological mechanisms and in silico prediction capabilities. The system should be able to detect signals better and faster than spontaneous reporting systems and should allow for identification of subpopulations at higher risk for ADRs.

News Article | January 26, 2016

IBM has announced its latest innovation: the ability to view the individual reactions of individual molecules, all with the help of atomic microscopy. Along with researchers at the University of Santiago de Compostela and CiSQUS, the IBM scientists were able to study and view a molecular reaction known as Bergman cyclization, in which a thermal reaction occurs after being introduced to a hydrogen donor — an arrangement that chemists have been vying to observe for over three decades. "At first the rearrangement was simply considered a curiosity, but in the late 1980s it was discovered that [it is] the mechanism of action for some anticancer drugs, which are based on this reaction," explained chemist and study researcher Diego Peña in an official statement released by IBM in an effort to trace the historical origin of interest. "This naturally attracted a lot of attention from the scientific community, and now it's a very popular reaction in organic chemistry." The lynchpin observation was achieved with the help of atomic force microscopy (AFM), in which a nano-sized sharp tip tracked and imaged the reaction between the molecules, creating the final image. What made IBM's breakthrough possible was its own take on AFM technical technique, a particular facet that IBM scientists Leo Gross and Gerhard Meyer have worked on since 2009. "One main differentiator of our technique, with respect to other established techniques, is that we measure single molecules," said Gross. "Another advantage is that we can use the tip to initiate chemical reactions of individual molecules and we can follow the reactions and study their products at the atomic scale." "Remarkably, we can change almost all important properties of these molecules by switching them, affecting their reactivity, structure and their optical, electronic and magnetic behavior," he added. Watch molecules react in the video clip below.

News Article | March 9, 2016

The turbot lives on the sea-bed, which means it has had to adapt to an environment of very little light and chillier waters. Credit: CSIC Communications Department The first vertebrate to be genetically sequenced in Spain, the Turbot (Scophthalmus maximus), has a much more highly developed sense of sight than other fish, since it has evolved in order to adapt itself to the lack of light on the sea bed. In addition, its genes show us that the levels of fat in its cellular membranes are far higher than in other species, so as to be able to withstand the low water temperatures in its habitat. The complete genome sequencing of this fish, carried out by scientists from the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), the University of Santiago de Compostela, and Spain's National Centre for Genome Analysis in Barcelona have brought this and other conclusions to light. The work opens the way for further investigation, not only into the Turbot's resistance to different illnesses, but also to look more deeply into how other fish respond to these pathologies. The results, published in the magazine DNA Research, could be used in the future design of genetic selection programmes, or in possible vaccines. The flat-bodied Turbot, rhomboid-shaped, and with both eyes found on its left side, underwent a process of metamorphosis during its development, which is when it began to develop a body distribution which is atypical in flat fish. And it's because of this circumstance it lives on the sea-bed, which means it has had to adapt to an environment of very little light and chillier waters. "We have seen that many of the genes which are involved in sight, mainly those which carry pigment codes, and others involved in forming the crystalline, are repeated in this vertebrate with respect to other fish. This would indicate that they have evolved, refining their sense of sight to adapt to the low levels of light which surrounds them", says CSIC investigator, Antonio Figueras, from the Institute of Marine Investigation in Vigo. In order to tolerate these low temperatures, the Turbot has a number of genes related to fatty acids in the repeated cellular membranes, when compared with other organisms which live at higher temperatures. The lipid composition of these membranes is a key factor when it comes to withstanding cold. Scientists have managed to identify the most important genes involved in growth, sexual differentiation, and disease resistance, including which specific parts of the genome affect these production traits. "This information is essential to the development of more efficient genetic selection projects, with the aim of identifying the breeding fish with the best production traits", highlights Figueras. Spain is the number one producer of farmed turbot in Europe, with 99% of the total harvest produced in Galicia. According to a report by The Business Association of Marine Aquaculture Producers (APROMAR), European Turbot production reached 11,000 tonnes in 2014, 38% up on 2013. In the same year, the estimated value of the catch across Europe was €75.6m. According to Paulino Martínez, a researcher at the University of Santiago de Compostela, although present day turbot farming is well established, the main problems fish farmers face are related to the species' susceptibility to a range of bacterial, viral, or parasitic diseases and illnesses. As yet, no vaccines or effective treatment exist for many of these pathologies. Another of the challenges facing the sector is how to shorten the time required for the fish to reach a marketable size. "This could be improved by selecting those genes which are involved in growth and sexual differentiation, given that females show far better growth rates compared with males", adds Martínez. Explore further: Blind cave fish may provide insight on eye disease and other human health issues

Hernandez-Gil J.,University of Valencia | Ferrer S.,University of Valencia | Castineiras A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lloret F.,University of Valencia
Inorganic Chemistry | Year: 2012

The title compound, characterized by means of an X-ray structure analysis, represents an easy example of a noncatena "1 + 2 + 1" tetranuclear copper(II) μ3-triazolate compound. [Cu4(atc) 2(dien)4(ClO4)2](ClO 4)2·2H2O (1), where H2atc = 5-amino-l,2,4-triazole-3-carboxylic acid and dien = diethylenetriamine = 1,4,7-triazaheptane, contains two copper atoms linked by a double diazinic bridge, each of which is further connected to a third and fourth copper atom (Cu′) through the triply bridging triazolato ring and the bidentate carboxylato group of the atc2- ligands. The copper-copper distances within the tetranuclear unit are Cu-Cu = 4.059 Å, Cu-Cu′ = 5.686 and 6.370 Å, and Cu′-Cu′ = 11.373 Å. The compound self-assembles into a tridimensional hydrogen-bonded network to generate a MOF. 1 exhibits antiferromagnetic behavior with g = 2.10(1), J = -34.1(2) cm -1 and j = -5.50(3) cm-1, where J is the coupling constant of the central Cu-Cu pair and j the coupling constant of the two Cu-Cu′ (Cucentral-Cupheripheral) pairs, as defined by H = -JS2S2a - j (S1S2 + S 2aS1a). Complex 1 has been tested as nuclease mimic. It shows good binding propensity to calf thymus DNA, with a binding constant value of 6.20 × 106 M-1 (Kapp) and ΔTm = 18.3 °C. Moreover, the compound displays efficient oxidative cleavage of pUC18 DNA, even at low concentration, in the presence of a mild reducing agent (ascorbate), with a rate constant for the conversion of supercoiled to nicked DNA (kobs) of ∼0.126 min-1. The good reactivity of 1 toward DNA is explained from the electrostatic interactions of the cationic species produced in solution. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Ojea E.,Basque Center for Climate Change 3 | Loureiro M.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Marine Policy | Year: 2010

The current reduction in commercial fish stocks is a problem of global concern. In response to this situation, administrations around the world are attempting to recover critical stocks by implementing new regulations based on catching restrictions and recovery plans. These restrictions have negative effects on local economies, but species recovery also brings important benefits to society in the long term. Given that the recovery of endangered species also results in considerable non-use economic value, this paper employs contingent valuation techniques to measure individual preferences for different recovery levels. We distinguish primarily between existence and option values linked to various levels of the desired stocks and discuss how these values influence willingness to pay (WTP) estimates. Our results show that recovered stocks for hake and Norwegian lobster increase local welfare, and show that the median household WTP is about 17.73€ for a recovery programme regulated by the European Union. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Paukkunen H.,University of Jyväskylä | Paukkunen H.,Helsinki Institute of Physics | Salgado C.A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

The compatibility of neutrino-nucleus deep inelastic scattering data within the universal, factorizable nuclear parton distribution functions has been studied independently by several groups in the past few years. The conclusions are contradictory, ranging from a violation of the universality up to a good agreement, most of the controversy originating from the use of the neutrino-nucleus data from the NuTeV Collaboration. Here, we pay attention to non-negligible differences in the absolute normalization between different neutrino data sets. We find that such variations are large enough to prevent a tensionless fit to all data simultaneously and could therefore misleadingly point towards nonuniversal nuclear effects. We propose a concrete method to deal with the absolute normalization and show that an agreement between independent neutrino data sets is established. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Rodriguez-Garcia G.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Molinos-Senante M.,University of Valencia | Hospido A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Hernandez-Sancho F.,University of Valencia | And 2 more authors.
Water Research | Year: 2011

The objective of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) is to prevent pollution. However, it is necessary to assess their sustainability in order to ensure that pollution is being removed, not displaced. In this research, the performance of 24 WWTPs has been evaluated using a streamlined Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) with Eutrophication Potential (EP) and Global Warming Potential (GWP) as environmental indicators, and operational costs as economic indicators. WWTPs were further classified in six typologies by their quality requirements according to their final discharge point or water reuse. Moreover, two different functional units (FU), one based on volume (m 3) and the other on eutrophication reduction (kg PO 4 3- removed) were used to further determine sustainability. A correlation between legal requirements and technologies used to achieve them was found: Organic matter removal plants were found to be less costly both in environmental and economic terms if volume was used as the functional unit, while more demanding typologies such as reuse plants showed a trade-off between lower EP and higher cost and GWP; however, this is overcome if the second FU is used instead, proving the sustainability of these options and that this FU better reflects the objectives of a WWTP. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Calafat A.,European Institute of Studies on Prevention Irefrea | Garcia F.,University of Valencia | Juan M.,European Institute of Studies on Prevention Irefrea | Becona E.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Fernandez-Hermida J.R.,University of Oviedo
Drug and Alcohol Dependence | Year: 2014

Background: This study examines whether authoritative parenting style (characterized by warmth and strictness) is more protective against adolescent substances use than authoritarian (strictness but not warmth), indulgent (warmth but not strictness) and neglectful (neither warmth nor strictness) parenting styles. Emergent research in diverse cultural contexts (mainly Southern European and Latin American countries) questions the fact that authoritative would always be the optimum parenting style. Design: Multi-factorial MANOVAs. Participants: A sample of 7718 adolescents, 3774 males (48.9%), 11-19 year-olds (M= 14.63 year-olds, SD. = 1.9 years) from Sweden, United Kingdom, Spain, Portugal, Slovenia, and the Czech Republic. Measurements: Parenting style dimensions (warmth and strictness) and adolescent substance use (alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drugs); additionally another three adolescent outcomes were also measured (self-esteem, school performance and personal disturbances) all of them related in the literature with substance use. Findings: Both indulgent and authoritative parenting styles were associated with better outcomes than authoritarian and neglectful parenting in all the countries studied. Overall, our results support the idea that in Europe the indulgent parenting style performs as well as the authoritative one since adolescents' scores in the youth outcomes were equal (on substance use and personal disturbances) or even better (on self esteem and school performance) than for authoritative parenting style. Conclusions: Parenting styles relate to substance use and other outcomes in the same way in different countries explored. The so-called indulgent parenting style appears to be as good as the authoritative in protecting against substance abuse. © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Llaneza L.,S.L. Perpetuo Socorro No 12 Entresuelo | Llaneza L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Lopez-Bao J.V.,S.L. Perpetuo Socorro No 12 Entresuelo | Lopez-Bao J.V.,CSIC - Doñana Biological Station | Sazatornil V.,S.L. Perpetuo Socorro No 12 Entresuelo
Diversity and Distributions | Year: 2012

Aim Understanding which human or environmental factors interact to enable or to limit the occurrence and persistence of large carnivores in human-dominated landscapes is an important issue for their effective conservation, especially under the current scenario of global change where most of their former habitat is being transformed by humans. Location NW Iberian Peninsula. Methods We combine data on the distribution of Iberian wolves (Canis lupus signatus) living in a human-dominated landscape in NW Spain and variation and partitioning methods to investigate the relative importance of three groups of predictors: food availability, humans and landscape attributes - each group expected to have unequal effects on wolf reproduction and survival - and their interactions on the occurrence of this species. Results We found that the group of predictors related with landscape attributes (altitude, roughness and refuge) strongly determined wolf occurrence, followed by humans and food availability. Variance partitioning analysis revealed that the three most important components determining wolf occurrence were related with landscape attributes: (1) the joint effects of the three predictor groups, (2) the joint effect of humans and landscape attributes and (3) the pure effect of landscape attributes. Altitude had the main independent contribution to explain the probability of wolf occurrence. Main conclusions In human-dominated landscapes, the occurrence of wolves is the result of a complex interaction among several environmental and human factors. Our results suggest that the characteristics of the landscape (spatial context) - factors associated with the security of wolves facilitating that animals go unnoticed by humans, wolf movements, dispersal events and short-time colonization - become more important in human-dominated landscapes and may have played a key role in the occurrence and persistence of this species throughout decades modulating the relationship between humans and wolf distribution. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Fong-Padron C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Cabaleiro-Lago E.M.,Facultade de Ciencias | Rodriguez-Otero J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Chemical Physics Letters | Year: 2014

A computational study has been performed in order to characterize the interactions in ternary systems formed by an ion pair of ionic liquids (ILs): C1mim+BF4-,C1mim+NO3- and [C 1mim+][CF3COO-], and one water molecule. Using CCSD(T) values extrapolated to basis set limit as reference, the performance of six different functionals has been assessed giving the following order (from better to worse performance): M06-HF ∼ M05-2X > M06-2X > B97D > PBE0 > B3LYP. The best functionals perform similarly to MP2/aug-cc-pVTZ, with mean absolute deviations around 0.7 kcal/mol, whereas PBE0 and B3LYP deviate by more than 2.0 kcal/mol. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Gomez-Reino J.J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Maneiro J.R.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Ruiz J.,MIXESTAT SL | Rosello R.,Hospital San Jorge | And 2 more authors.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2012

Objective: To compare the effectiveness of switching to rituximab (RTX) with switching to alternative tumour necrosis factor (TNF) antagonists in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) failing on TNF antagonists. Methods: A multicentre prospective 3-year observational study was performed in patients with RA treated with RTX or an alternative TNF antagonist. The baseline 28-joint disease activity score (DAS28) and Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ) score were compared with 6, 9 and 12 month values, adjusting for propensity score quintiles. Propensity scores were estimated for each patient using logistic regression with treatment as the dependent variable and baseline prior number of TNFs >1, years from diagnosis >5, extra-articular manifestations, previous toxicity, use of ≥2 disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs, age and sex as independent variables. Results: 1124 patients were treated with either RTX (n=591, 52.6%) or alternative TNF antagonists (n=533, 47.4%). RTX-treated patients had longer disease duration (p=0.0001), larger numbers of previous TNF antagonists (p<0.0001) and tender and swollen joints (p<0.0001). There was no significant difference in the reduction in DAS28 at 6, 9 and 12 months between RTX-treated patients and those treated with TNF antagonists. However, the reduction in DAS28 was significantly different between RTX-treated patients and adalimumab/ infliximab-treated patients (p=0.001 and p=0.05, respectively). There was a marginally significant difference at any time period in the proportion of patients achieving an improvement in the HAQ score of >0.22 (p=0.06). Conclusions: Optimal treatment for patients with RA failing on treatment with TNF antagonists may include RTX. This study suggests that the improvement in DAS28 is larger in patients treated with RTX than in those treated with monoclonal anti-TNF agents.

Guntinas M.E.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Leiros M.C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Trasar-Cepeda C.,CSIC - National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences | Gil-Sotres F.,University of Santiago de Compostela
European Journal of Soil Biology | Year: 2012

Climate change will lead to changes in soil moisture and temperature, thereby affecting organic matter mineralization and the cycling of biophilic elements such as nitrogen. However, very few studies have considered how the sensitivity of the rate of net nitrogen mineralization to temperature and/or moisture content may be modified by changes in these parameters. To investigate how changes in temperature and moisture content affect net nitrogen mineralization (as regards both the mineralization rate and the sensitivity of the mineralization rate to changes in temperature and moisture content), a laboratory experiment was carried out in which three soils under different types of use (Forest, Grassland, Cropland) were incubated for 42 days under different moisture conditions (between 40 and 100% field capacity) and temperatures (between 10 and 35 °C); total inorganic nitrogen levels were determined at different times throughout the experiment. The rate of mineralization was determined at each temperature and moisture level considered, by use of the mono-compartmental model developed by Stanford and Smith (1972). For all soils, changes in the rate of mineralization with temperature followed the pattern described by the Q 10 model, while the models used to determine the effect of moisture content on the net rate of mineralization (linear, semilogarithmic, partial parabolic and complete parabolic) were only verified for the Forest soil. In general, the sensitivity to temperature was maximal at 25 °C, and the optimal moisture content for nitrogen mineralization was between 80% and 100% of field capacity. A relatively simple model that included the temperature-moisture-time interaction was also tested. This model provided a significant fit for the three soils under study, in contrast with the other models tested. In any case, further studies are necessary in order to address the extent to which changes in the quality of organic matter, caused by land use, affect any modifications to soil nitrogen that may be generated by climate change. © 2011 Elsevier Masson SAS.

Rodriguez-Sanz A.A.,Facultade de Ciencias | Cabaleiro-Lago E.M.,Facultade de Ciencias | Rodriguez-Otero J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry | Year: 2014

A computational study has been carried out in complexes formed by pyrrolidinium cation and aromatic units present in amino acid side chains. The interaction is stronger with indole (-21.9 kcal mol-1 at the CCSD(T) complete basis set level) than with phenol (-17.4 kcal mol-1) or benzene (-16.1 kcal mol-1). Most stable structures show a N-H⋯π contact between pyrrolidinium cation and the phenyl ring of the three aromatic species, except in phenol complexes where the most stable minimum shows a N-H⋯O hydrogen bond. In phenol and indole complexes, secondary contacts are established between the C-H groups of the carbon skeleton of pyrrolidinium and the aromatic rings or hydroxyl oxygen, being the main reason for the enhanced stability with respect to benzene, where these contacts are not possible. The interaction is mainly controlled by electrostatics, but contributions from induction and dispersion are also significant, especially the latter in indole complexes. These three attractive contributions increase their intensity when going from benzene to phenol and indole. Microhydration effects have been estimated by including up to three water molecules in the complexes. In monohydrated pyrrolidinium⋯benzene complex the most stable structure shows the water molecule coordinated to the cation without interacting with the ring. In phenol and indole, otherwise, the water molecule interacts with both the cation and the aromatic species, forming a cyclic hydrogen bond pattern π(phenyl)⋯H-N-H⋯O-H⋯X (X = π, O). This pattern is also present among the most stable structures found for complexes with two and three water molecules, though a variety of almost isoenergetic minima showing different hydrogen bond patterns have been found. Water molecules remove the stability differences between phenol and indole complexes, which already with two water molecules show similar stabilities, though around 5 kcal mol -1 larger than benzene ones. This journal is © the Partner Organisations 2014.

Gonzalez-Varo J.P.,CSIC - Doñana Biological Station | Lopez-Bao J.V.,Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences | Guitian J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Animal Ecology | Year: 2013

Summary: Knowledge of the spatial scale of the dispersal service provided by important seed dispersers (i.e. common and/or keystone species) is essential to our understanding of their role on plant ecology, ecosystem functioning and, ultimately, biodiversity conservation. Carnivores are the main mammalian frugivores and seed dispersers in temperate climate regions. However, information on the seed dispersal distances they generate is still very limited. We focused on two common temperate carnivores differing in body size and spatial ecology - red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and European pine marten (Martes martes) - for evaluating possible functional diversity in their seed dispersal kernels. We measured dispersal distances using colour-coded seed mimics embedded in experimental fruits that were offered to the carnivores in feeding stations (simulating source trees). The exclusive colour code of each simulated tree allowed us to assign the exact origin of seed mimics found later in carnivore faeces. We further designed an explicit sampling strategy aiming to detect the longest dispersal events; as far we know, the most robust sampling scheme followed for tracking carnivore-dispersed seeds. We found a marked functional heterogeneity among both species in their seed dispersal kernels according to their home range size: multimodality and long-distance dispersal in the case of the fox and unimodality and short-distance dispersal in the case of the marten (maximum distances = 2846 and 1233 m, respectively). As a consequence, emergent kernels at the guild level (overall and in two different years) were highly dependent on the relative contribution of each carnivore species. Our results provide the first empirical evidence of functional diversity among seed dispersal kernels generated by carnivorous mammals. Moreover, they illustrate for the first time how seed dispersal kernels strongly depend on the relative contribution of different disperser species, thus on the composition of local disperser assemblages. These findings provide a key starting point for understanding and modelling plant population processes that include mammal-mediated seed dispersal, such as connectivity, range expansion and colonization. © 2012 British Ecological Society.

French National Center for Scientific Research, University of Santiago de Compostela and Institute Pasteur Paris | Date: 2012-01-24

The prsent invention relates to a method for manufacturing an analysis device including torpdo membrane fragments immobilized at the surface thereof, to the resulting analysis device, and to the use of said device for detecting, purifying, and characterizing molcules acting on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. The prsent invention is useful in the field of monitoring seafood, monitoring neurotoxic phytoplankton for the shellfish industry, monitoring the quality of bathing waters along tourist beaches, the field of monitoring fresh water reserves, the field of mdical research, the field of the biological analysis and characterization of molcules, e.g., non-radioactive assays of the movement of the ligand-receptor bond on an ELISA-type microplate, thereby enabling comptitive agonists and antagonists of targets to be detected, e.g., of highly sensitive receptors.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2014-ETN | Award Amount: 3.00M | Year: 2015

Many therapeutic targets are shielded behind biological barriers, limiting the possibility to reach them with conventional drugs or diagnostic probes. Biological barriers are even more problematic for most biological pharmaceutics, such as recombinant proteins, antibodies and gene therapeutics. The most promising solution to this challenge is the use of nano-vehicles for specific targeting and delivery. The aim of NABBA is to form European early stage researchers (ESR) with cutting-edge scientific knowledge in the field of nanoparticles (NP) for biomedical application, able to cross biological barriers. For this aim the project will train ESRs, focusing on key aspects of nanobiotechnology: (i) design and chemical synthesis of different types of NPs, (ii) related techniques of detection and characterization, (iii) strategies of loading, targeting and delivery of drugs or diagnostic probes; (iv) proof of principle of pharmacological activity including pharmacokinetics and biodistribution. As a peculiar feature of NABBA, strong emphasis will be devoted to molecular mechanisms ruling biological barriers under physiological and pathological conditions, in order to develop novel nano-technological expedients for their crossing. Strong emphasis will be devoted to advanced chemistry issues, enabling new synthetic strategies either for NP assembly or functionalization. Different biological barriers will be addressed. ESRs will strongly benefit from a network of internationally recognized scientists in the field of chemistry, nanobiotechnology and nanomedicine, and the participation of companies with relevant interests and expertises in the field. The planned cooperation programs between Academia and Industries will allow the circulation of ESRs and this will give them the opportunity for to get acquainted with the most advanced research in the field, the most sophisticated technologies and the most advanced Industrial manufacturing platforms and innovative strategies.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IRSES | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2012-IRSES | Award Amount: 205.80K | Year: 2013

In the last 30 years the financial systems have grown enormously: new financial instruments have been introduced, intermediaries have expanded their activity well beyond their possibility, exposure to risk has increased almost in every country. The effect of this anomalous expansion of the financial system has been an increase in the perceived systemic risk and more instability. Because of this, finance seems to have become suddenly dangerous and detrimental for growth. And despite the large body of past evidences, many have started to argue that financial development is no longer a positive factor for capital accumulation. Though it is hard to conceive a radical change in the established theory which has highlighted the benefits for the economy accruing from a developed financial system, these events have put forward the need to redefine the role of finance and financial innovation in allocating real resources. By pivoting on four main issues, the objective of the research is indeed to provide an answer to crucial questions that have emerged from recent event: 1. Inequality: The increase in inequality in many countries is thought to have been caused by an abnormal increase in the financial sector. Does finance exacerbate income inequality? To what extent? Or rather easy access to credit reduces poverty, as it has been argued by orthodox theory? 2. Inefficiency: By favoring some industries and sectors more than others, does an excess of growth in the financial system cause misallocation of resources? Does financial growth cause an excess in public spending? 3. Instability: Does the abnormal growth of the financial sector cause instability? Is this instability amplified in a monetary union? Can more stringent regulation and stronger coordination reduce the impact of financial cycle on the economy? 4. Growth and Development: Is finance and financial development really good for growth? To what extent financial development can spur growth and capital accumulation?

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: SPA.2010.2.2-01;SPA.2010.2.3-2 | Award Amount: 1.54M | Year: 2011

The project aims to realise a strong methodology for the development and design of non volatile memories usign standard CMOS silicon process actually used for consumer electronics. Since standard silicon memories, such as other silicon devices for consumer market, fails under irradiation two different approaches are envisaged: the first one is to develop specific technological processes able to substain heavy ions and other charged particles while the second one is more devoted to use specific design and architectures. The first approach, also known as Radiation Hardening by Process (RHBP), is very expensive and tied to technological issues which can be faced only by large corporates and, due to the very low amount of final devices to be realised, very difficult to follow (great deal of effort for a small niche market). The second approach, also known as Radiation Hardening by Design (RHBD), takes the best from standard CMOS consumer processes and, using very accurate design methodologies, mitigates radiation effects on silicon processes. Semiconductor memories, among rad hard integrated circuit scenario, are one of the most critical topic and non volatile memories in particular. Actually both volatile and non volatile memories, excluding few excpetions, are integrated using standard processes and standard architectures. This means that the final device is typically at least Rad Tolerant and not Rad Hard and failure during mission is avoided using Error Correctin Code techniques including redundancy (more devices of the same type are used in voting manner) at board level. The basic goal of the project is to give a methodology for the development of a generic rad hard non volatile memory with the features actually used in consumer market (good retention, reprogrammability and cyclicity) and realise a prototype (1Mbit Flash Memory) in order to validate the approach.

Noguera J.C.,University of Vigo | Lores M.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Alonso-Alvarez C.,Institute Investigacion en Recursos Cinegeticos | Velando A.,University of Vigo
Functional Ecology | Year: 2011

1.Conditions during early stages of life may have an important effect on phenotype, by inducing programmed responses that may remain throughout the lifetime of an animal. One very important factor that can promote long-term changes in phenotype is restriction of food intake (dietary restriction, DR). 2.Recently, it has been shown that DR may induce an increase in antioxidant and repair mechanisms as a result of hormetic responses. Interestingly, the induction of antioxidant and repair mechanisms may be triggered by transitory increases in reactive oxygen species. Dietary-derived antioxidants, such as vitamin E, may be important to determine the compensatory effect of DR. 3.To investigate the effect of DR on attenuation of oxidative damage, we manipulated dietary intake (by restricting food ingestion) and antioxidant availability (by vitamin E supplementation) during the first days of life of yellow-legged gull (Larus michahellis) chicks. We then measured oxidative status and body mass during the early development of chicks. 4.We found that an early short event of food shortage strongly affected the oxidative status of the chicks and their growth patterns. We observed less oxidative damage to proteins and DNA in dietary restricted chicks, after the period of food restriction, than in non-restricted chicks. Unexpectedly, vitamin E supplementation did not suppress the hormetic effect of DR, but instead increased it. 5.These novel results support the idea that short events of DR during early development induce a reduction in oxidative damage in wild animals. The results suggest that DR promotes the induction of an early hormetic response in some antioxidant defence processes and/or repair mechanisms. These findings have important implications for our understanding of how early conditions may shape the phenotype of an organism, and also for the study of evolutionary trade-offs during early growth. © 2011 The Authors. Functional Ecology © 2011 British Ecological Society.

Bigazzi F.,Solvay Group | Cotroneb A.L.,Catholic University of Leuven | Tarrioc J.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2010

First and second order transport coefficients are calculated for the strongly coupled N = 4 SYMplasma coupled to massless fundamental matter in the Veneziano limit. The results, including among others the value of the bulk viscosity and some relaxation times, are presented at next-to-leading order in the flavor contribution. The bulk viscosity is found to saturate Buchel's bound. This result is also captured by an effective singlescalar five-dimensional holographic dual in the Chamblin-Reall class and it is suggested to hold, in the limit of small deformations, for generic plasmas with gravity duals, whenever the leading conformality breaking effects are driven by marginally (ir)relevant operators. This proposal is then extended to other relations for hydrodynamic coefficients, which are conjectured to be universal for every non-conformal plasma with a dual Chamblin-Realllike description. Our analysis extends to any strongly coupled gauge theory describing the low energy dynamics of N c ≫ 1 D3-branes at the tip of a generic Calabi-Yau cone. The fundamental fields are added by means of 1 ≪ N f ≪ N c homogeneously smeared D7-branes. © SISSA 2010.

Meana-Paneda R.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Truhlar D.G.,University of Minnesota | Fernandez-Ramos A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of Chemical Theory and Computation | Year: 2010

We present a new least-action variational approximation for tunneling in polyatomic reactions based on the procedure developed by Garrett and Truhlar for atom-diatom reactions.63 The method calculates the semiclassical ground-state tunneling probability at every tunneling energy by minimizing the value of imaginary action integral along a family of paths ranging from the minimum energy path to the straight path. The method is illustrated by applications to two hydrogen-atom abstraction reactions from methane using analytical potential energy surfaces. Copyright © 2010 American Chemical Society.

Rossi-Izquierdo M.,University Hospital Lucus Augusti | Santos-Perez S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Soto-Varela A.,University of Santiago de Compostela
European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology | Year: 2011

Vestibular rehabilitation has been found to be effective and safe in patients with instability. There is insufficient evidence, however, for distinguishing between the efficacies of different rehabilitation techniques. The objective of this study is to verify whether there are differences between two instrumental vestibular rehabilitation techniques, computerised dynamic posturography (CDP) and optokinetic stimulation (OKN), in order to establish the optimal strategy for each patient. We conducted a prospective, comparative study of the two techniques (CDP and OKN) in patients with instability due to chronic unilateral peripheral vestibular disorder. We randomly included 12 patients in each group, performing the evaluation with the Dizziness Handicap Inventory and the CDP with the sensorial organisation test (SOT), rhythmic weight shift and limits of stability (LOS). We found a statistically significant improvement in both groups in average balance score according to the SOT. In the OKN group, however, improvement was greater in visual preference. The CDP group showed greater benefits in the visual and vestibular input and LOS. Patients with poor vestibular and visual input or with reduced LOS will benefit more from an exercise protocol with CDP. Patients with poor visual preference, however, are ideal candidates for rehabilitation with OKN. © 2011 Springer-Verlag.

Kaufman S.B.,Yale University | DeYoung C.G.,University of Minnesota | Gray J.R.,Yale University | Jimenez L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | And 2 more authors.
Cognition | Year: 2010

The ability to automatically and implicitly detect complex and noisy regularities in the environment is a fundamental aspect of human cognition. Despite considerable interest in implicit processes, few researchers have conceptualized implicit learning as an ability with meaningful individual differences. Instead, various researchers (e.g., Reber, 1993; Stanovich, 2009) have suggested that individual differences in implicit learning are minimal relative to individual differences in explicit learning. In the current study of English 16-17. year old students, we investigated the association of individual differences in implicit learning with a variety of cognitive and personality variables. Consistent with prior research and theorizing, implicit learning, as measured by a probabilistic sequence learning task, was more weakly related to psychometric intelligence than was explicit associative learning, and was unrelated to working memory. Structural equation modeling revealed that implicit learning was independently related to two components of psychometric intelligence: verbal analogical reasoning and processing speed. Implicit learning was also independently related to academic performance on two foreign language exams (French, German). Further, implicit learning was significantly associated with aspects of self-reported personality, including intuition, Openness to Experience, and impulsivity. We discuss the implications of implicit learning as an ability for dual-process theories of cognition, intelligence, personality, skill learning, complex cognition, and language acquisition. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Botana A.S.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Tran F.,Vienna University of Technology | Pardo V.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Baldomir D.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Blaha P.,Vienna University of Technology
Physical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics | Year: 2012

We report a series of electronic structure calculations for CrN using different exchange correlation potentials: PBE, LDA+U, the Tran-Blaha modified Becke-Johnson functional, and hybrid functionals. In every case, our calculations show that the onset of magnetism in CrN should be accompanied by a gap opening. The experimentally found antiferromagnetic order always leads to an insulating behavior. Our results give further evidence that the Tran-Blaha functional is very useful for treating the electronic structure of correlated semiconductors allowing a parameter-free description of the system. Hybrid functionals are also well capable of describing the electronic structure of CrN. The analysis of the system is complemented with our calculations of the thermopower that are in agreement with the experimental data. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Vuorinen A.,Helsinki Institute of Physics | Zhu Y.,University of Santiago de Compostela
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2015

Abstract: We revisit the determination of the two-loop spectral function in the shear channel of hot Yang-Mills theory. Correcting a technical error in an earlier computation is seen to improve the infrared behavior of the quantity significantly, while a partial Hard Thermal Loop resummation is seen to have only a very minor numerical effect on the result. These facts make it possible to straightforwardly apply the spectral function to the corresponding imaginary time correlator and the shear sum rule. © 2015, The Author(s).

Loureiro M.L.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Loomis J.B.,Colorado State University
Environmental and Resource Economics | Year: 2013

With global media reporting major environmental disasters, environmental damages linked to large oil spills may go well beyond the territorial limits of affected countries, particularly in the case of passive use values. In this analysis, we compare environmental damages linked a large oil spill off the coast of Spain using an online contingent valuation survey in three different European countries: Spain, UK, and Austria. Our results show that mean willingness to pay in Spain is about 124.37€/household, 80.87€/household in the UK, and 89.08€/household for Austria (expressed in 2009 prices). Conclusions and implications of our results suggest policy makers should consider the potential importance of passive use values in the compensation process of environmental damages caused by large international oil spills, especially within the European Union. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Crugeiras J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Rios A.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Riveiros E.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Richard J.P.,State University of New York at Buffalo
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2011

First-order rate constants, determined by 1H NMR, are reported for deuterium exchange between solvent D 2O and the α-amino carbon of glycine in the presence of increasing concentrations of carbonyl compounds (acetone, benzaldehyde, and salicylaldehyde) and at different pD and buffer concentrations. These rate data were combined with 1H NMR data that define the position of the equilibrium for formation of imines/iminium ions from addition of glycine to the respective carbonyl compounds, to give second-order rate constants k DO for deprotonation of α-imino carbon by DO -. The assumption that these second-order rate constants lie on linear structure-reactivity correlations between log k OL and pK a was made in estimating the following pK a's for deprotonation of α-imino carbon: pK a = 22, glycine-acetone iminium ion; pK a = 27, glycine-benzaldehyde imine; pK a ≈ 23, glycine-benzaldehyde iminium ion; and, pK a = 25, glycine-salicylaldehyde iminium ion. The much lower pK a of 17 [Toth, K.; Richard, J. P.J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2007, 129, 3013 -3021 ] for carbon deprotonation of the adduct between 5′-deoxypyridoxal (DPL) and glycine shows that the strongly electron-withdrawing pyridinium ion is unique in driving the extended delocalization of negative charge from the α-iminium to the α-pyridinium carbon. This favors carbanion protonation at the α-pyridinium carbon, and catalysis of the 1,3-aza-allylic isomerization reaction that is a step in enzyme-catalyzed transamination reactions. An analysis of the effect of incremental changes in structure on the activity of benzaldehyde in catalysis of deprotonation of glycine shows the carbonyl group electrophile, the 2-O - ring substituent and the cation pyridinium nitrogen of DPL each make a significant contribution to the catalytic activity of this cofactor analogue. The extraordinary activity of DPL in catalysis of deprotonation of α-amino carbon results from the summation of these three smaller effects. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Loading University of Santiago de Compostela collaborators
Loading University of Santiago de Compostela collaborators