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DNA methylation, which occurs at the 5'-position of the cytosine in CpG dinucleotides, has great potential for forensic identification of body fluids, because tissue-specific patterns of DNA methylation have been demonstrated, and DNA is less prone to degradation than proteins or RNA. Previous studies have reported several body fluid-specific DNA methylation markers, but DNA methylation differences are sometimes low in saliva and vaginal secretions. Moreover, specific DNA methylation markers in four types of body fluids (blood, saliva, semen, and vaginal secretions) have not been investigated with genome-wide profiling. Here, we investigated novel DNA methylation markers for identification of body fluids for use in forensic science using the Illumina HumanMethylation 450K bead array, which contains over 450,000 CpG sites. Using methylome data from 16 samples of blood, saliva, semen, and vaginal secretions, we first selected 2986 hypermethylated or hypomethylated regions that were specific for each type of body fluid. We then selected eight CpG sites as novel, forensically relevant DNA methylation markers: cg06379435 and cg08792630 for blood, cg26107890 and cg20691722 for saliva, cg23521140 and cg17610929 for semen, and cg01774894 and cg14991487 for vaginal secretions. These eight selected markers were evaluated in 80 body fluid samples using pyrosequencing, and all showed high sensitivity and specificity for identification of the target body fluid. We suggest that these eight DNA methylation markers may be good candidates for developing an effective molecular assay for identification of body fluids in forensic science.
<P>This study focuses on understanding scientific evolution by using keyword co-occurrence networks, where keywords appearing in a scientific article are linked with a weight equal to the number of co-occurrences. To characterize structural changes of the network, we examine distributions of sums of weights by node over time. In particular, a change of power-law behavior is utilized to explore scientific evolution, such as emerging scientific paradigms and advancing normal science. As an illustration of the method used, the development of Liquid Crystal Displays (LCDs) and Plasma Display Panels (PDPs) is tracked. We detect two-tiered power-law distributions in the initial stage of scientific growth in both technologies due to differences in research intensity between two groups. The groups of keywords more likely to attract researchers' interest than others are incrementally developed until the mid-2000s to overtake those prior. Finally, we can capture a merging point of the dichotomous structure of PDPs but LCDs maintain the structural separation throughout the adjustment area. We expect that this structural investigation of keyword co-occurrence networks provides an indicator to diagnose the research evolution in that field. (C) 2016 Published by Elsevier B.V.</P>
<P>In research on small mobile robots and biomimetic robots, locomotion ability remains a major issue despite many advances in technology. However, evolution has led to there being many real animals capable of excellent locomotion. This paper presents a 'parasitic robot system' whereby locomotion abilities of an animal are applied to a robot task. We chose a turtle as our first host animal and designed a parasitic robot that can perform 'operant conditioning'. The parasitic robot, which is attached to the turtle, can induce object-tracking behavior of the turtle toward a Light Emitting Diode (LED) and positively reinforce the behavior through repeated stimulus-response interaction. After training sessions over five weeks, the robot could successfully control the direction of movement of the trained turtles in the waypoint navigation task. This hybrid animal-robot interaction system could provide an alternative solution to some of the limitations of conventional mobile robot systems in various fields, and could also act as a useful interaction system for the behavioral sciences.</P>
Revealing the atomic structure and disorder in oxide glasses, including sodium silicates and aluminosilicates, with varying degrees of polymerization, is a challenging problem in high-temperature geochemistry as well as glass science. Here, we report <SUP>17</SUP>O MAS and 3QMAS NMR spectra for binary sodium silicate and ternary sodium aluminosilicate glasses with varying degrees of polymerization (Na<SUB>2</SUB>O/SiO<SUB>2</SUB> ratio and Na<SUB>2</SUB>O/Al<SUB>2</SUB>O<SUB>3</SUB> ratio), revealing in detail the extent of disorder (network connectivity and topological disorder) and variations of NMR parameters with the glass composition. In binary sodium silicate glasses [Na<SUB>2</SUB>O-k(SiO<SUB>2</SUB>)], the fraction of non-bridging oxygens (NBOs, Na-O-Si) increases with the Na<SUB>2</SUB>O/SiO<SUB>2</SUB> ratio (k), as predicted from the composition. The <SUP>17</SUP>O isotropic chemical shifts (<SUP>17</SUP>O δ<SUB>iso</SUB>) for both bridging oxygen (BO) and NBO increase by about 10-15ppm with the SiO<SUB>2</SUB> content (for k=1-3). The quadrupolar coupling products of BOs and NBOs also increase with the SiO<SUB>2</SUB> content. These trends suggest that both NBOs and BOs strongly interact with Na; therefore, the Na distributions around BOs and NBOs are likely to be relatively homogenous for the glass compositions studied here, placing some qualitative limits on the extent of segregation of alkali channels from silica-enriched regions as suggested by modified random-network models. The peak width (in the isotropic dimension) and thus bond angle and length distributions of Si-O-Si and Na-O-Si increase with the SiO<SUB>2</SUB> content, indicating an increase in the topological disorder with the degree of polymerization. In the ternary aluminosilicate glasses [Na<SUB>2</SUB>O]<SUB>x</SUB>[Al<SUB>2</SUB>O<SUB>3</SUB>]<SUB>1-x</SUB>SiO<SUB>2</SUB>, the NBO fraction decreases while the Al-O-Si and Al-O-Al fractions apparently increase with increasing Al<SUB>2</SUB>O<SUB>3</SUB> content. The variation of oxygen cluster populations suggests that deviation from ''Al avoidance'' is more apparent near the charge-balanced join (Na/Al=1). The Si-O-Si fraction, which is closely related to the activity coefficient of silica, would decrease with increasing Al<SUB>2</SUB>O<SUB>3</SUB> content at a constant mole fraction of SiO<SUB>2</SUB>. Therefore, the activity of silica may decrease from depolymerized binary silicates to fully polymerized sodium aluminosilicate glasses at a constant mole fraction of SiO<SUB>2</SUB>.
<P>Using the first principles methods, we performed systematic study on the effect of edge-functional groups on the electronic energy levels and the optical properties of sp(2) carbon clusters. It is found that the intrinsic pi and pi* orbitals are weakly altered by oxygen-bearing functional groups, but it is significantly disrupted by pyrrolic groups. Thereby the oscillator strength of the lowest-energy transition is found to be much stronger for the pyrrolic group functionalized cluster than for the carboxyl group. From our results being consistent with the experimental reports, we suggest that the photoluminescence enhancement is caused by a perturbation of the intrinsic, frontier molecular orbitals by edge groups. (C) 2016 Elsevier. Ltd. All rights reserved.</P>
Zhang, J.,Tsai, T.F.,Lee, M.G.,Zheng, M.,Wang, G.,Jin, H.,Gu, J.,Li, R.,Liu, Q.,Chen, J.,Tu, C.,Qi, C.,Zhu, H.,Ports, W.C.,Crook, T. Elsevier ; Elsevier Science Pub. Co 2017 JOURNAL OF DERMATOLOGICAL SCIENCE Vol.88 No.1
Background: Tofacitinib is an oral Janus kinase inhibitor. Objective: This study assessed tofacitinib efficacy and safety vs placebo in Asian patients with moderate to severe chronic plaque psoriasis. Methods: Patients from China mainland, Taiwan, and Korea were randomized 2:2:1:1 to tofacitinib 5mg (N=88), tofacitinib 10mg (N=90), placebo→5mg (N=44), or placebo→10mg (N=44), twice daily (BID) for 52 weeks. Placebo-treated patients advanced to tofacitinib at Week 16. Co-primary efficacy endpoints: proportions of patients achieving Physician's Global Assessment (PGA) response ('clear' or 'almost clear') and proportion achieving ≥75% reduction from baseline Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI75) at Week 16. Results: At Week 16, more patients achieved PGA and PASI75 responses with tofacitinib 5mg (52.3%; 54.6%) and 10mg (75.6%; 81.1%) BID vs placebo (19.3%; 12.5%; all p<0.0001). Of patients with a Week 16 response, 73.6% and 75.0% maintained PGA response, and 76.8% and 84.9% maintained PASI75 to Week 52 with tofacitinib 5mg and 10mg BID, respectively. Over 52 weeks, 2.2-4.5% of patients across treatment groups experienced serious adverse events, and 1.1-6.8% discontinued due to adverse events. Conclusion: Tofacitinib demonstrated efficacy vs placebo at Week 16 in Asian patients with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis; efficacy was maintained through Week 52. No unexpected safety findings were observed. [NCT01815424]
Background: Transient receptor potential type 1 (TRPV1) can be activated by ultraviolet (UV) irradiation, and mediates UV-induced matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1 and proinflammatory cytokines in keratinocytes. Various chemicals and compounds targeting TRPV1 activation have been developed, but are not in clinical use mostly due to their safety issues. Objective: We aimed to develop a novel TRPV1-targeting peptide to inhibit UV-induced responses in human skin. Methods: We designed and generated a novel TRPV1 inhibitory peptide (TIP) which mimics the specific site in TRPV1 (aa 701-709: Gln-Arg-Ala-Ile-Thr-Ile-Leu-Asp-Thr, QRAITILDT), Thr<SUP>705</SUP>, and tested its efficacy of blocking UV-induced responses in HaCaT, mouse, and human skin. Results: TIP effectively inhibited capsaicin-induced calcium influx and TRPV1 activation. Treatment of HaCaT with TIP prevented UV-induced increases of MMP-1 and pro-inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin (IL)-6 and tumor necrosis factor-α. In mouse skin in vivo, TIP inhibited UV-induced skin thickening and prevented UV-induced expression of MMP-13 and MMP-9. Moreover, TIP attenuated UV-induced erythema and the expression of MMP-1, MMP-2, IL-6, and IL-8 in human skin in vivo. Conclusion: The novel synthetic peptide targeting TRPV1 can ameliorate UV-induced skin responses in vitro and in vivo, providing a promising therapeutic approach against UV-induced inflammation and photoaging.
<P>Warehouse capacity constraint has been one obstacle to achieving the channel-wide optimal decision in inventory management. We studied an integrated inventory model consisting of a single vendor and multiple buyers with warehouse capacity sharing via transshipment. We proposed an optimal transshipment policy by developing nonlinear programming models and genetic algorithms as well as obtaining Karush-Kuhn-Tucker points. This inventory policy can significantly reduce the channel-wide cost and the performance is influenced by the consideration of fixed transshipment costs. Sensitivity analyses show that parameters have different impacts on the channel-wide cost and the performances of the algorithms. (C) 2017 Published by Elsevier Ltd.</P>
<P>Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) and the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) are two major sources to finance U.S. airports. This paper develops a novel dynamic network DEA framework to investigate the substitutability between PFC and AIP funds. We find that the studied U.S. airports can substitute PFC for 8-35% of the current AIP funds and contribute significantly to the proposed plan of the US congress to cut AIP funding. In addition, the amount of PFC-for-AIP funds substitution negatively correlates with the productive efficiency of airports. The findings send an important message for future policy reforms on U.S. airport financing. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.</P>