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Exploring the diversity and molecular evolution of shrews (family Soricidae) using mtDNA cytochrome b data
Sandy Willows-Munro
African Zoology , 2012,
Abstract: The taxonomy of the shrews (family Soricidae) is primarily underpinned by the analysis of morphology characters. These morphological characters are, however, often plesiomorphic and difficult to interpret in an evolutionarily meaningful way. Recent molecular studies have provided some clarity at lower-taxonomic levels, but studies giving resolution to deeper levels of the soricid phylogeny are lacking. By constructing the most taxonomically inclusive molecular phylogeny for this cosmopolitan family, this study aims to test the utility of the routinely used mitochondrial cytochrome b gene to resolve the higher-level relationships within the Soricidae. Given the life history characteristics of shrews (high metabolic rate in Soricinae, small body size, fast generation time and generally short lifespan), the metabolic theory predicts accelerated nucleotide turnover in this family. By examining the molecular evolution of the cytochrome b molecule, this study identifies both lineage- and codon- specific mutational rate differences. We suggest that codon-specific mutational rate patterns are best explained by unique selective regimes operating on the different codon positions, while lineage-specific rate variation among genera belonging to Soricidae may reflect differences in the mode and speed of speciation events which generated species.
Symmetric Identities from an Invariant in Partition Conjugation and Their Applications in q-Series  [PDF]
Sandy H. L. Chen
Open Journal of Discrete Mathematics (OJDM) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/ojdm.2014.42006
Abstract:

For every partition \"\" and its conjugation \"\", there is an important invariant \"\" \"\", which denotes the number of different parts. That is \"\", . We will derive a series of symmetric q-identities from the invariant in partition conjugation by studying modified Durfee rectangles. The extensive applications of the several symmetric q-identities in q-series ?[1] will also be discussed. Without too much effort one can obtain much well-known knowledge as well as new formulas by proper substitutions and elementary calculations, such as symmetric identities, mock theta functions, a two-variable reciprocity theorem, identities from Ramanujan’s Lost Notebook and so on.

Measurement of Gamma-Rays Using Smartphones  [PDF]
Sandy Tith, Nares Chankow
Open Journal of Applied Sciences (OJAppS) , 2016, DOI: 10.4236/ojapps.2016.61004
Abstract: The CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) image sensor of a smartphone has been known for its sensitivity to gamma-rays. In this research, some smartphones were selected and tested for measurement of gamma-rays emitted from Cesium-137 and Iridium-192 sources. During measurements, the phones were set in video mode while the camera lenses were covered with black adhesive tape to prevent light exposure. Interaction of gamma-rays with the CMOS appeared as flashing bright spots on the image. The bright spots were then counted by using the freely available ImageJ software. Preliminary results indicated that the number of bright spots increased linearly with increase of gamma-ray dose rate. An in-house Android application software was then developed for real-time counting of the bright spots. The application software also allowed users to input a calibration equation so that the phones could simultaneously convert the count rate to display in dose rate. This research demonstrated that, after appropriate calibration, smartphones could be used as gamma-ray measuring devices for radiation safety control involving high activity sources such as in industrial radiography, gamma-ray irradiation facility and medical treatment.
CMV-associated encephalitis and antineuronal autoantibodies - a case report
Xu Xinling,Bergman Peter,Willows Thomas,Tammik Charlotte
BMC Neurology , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2377-12-87
Abstract: Background Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is an ubiquitous pathogen capable of modulating the host immune system. Immune dysfunction is common during CMV infection and includes autoimmune phenomena. Here we focus on a case of primary CMV infection associated with encephalopathy in a patient with a rudimentary spleen. We discuss diagnostic challenges and immunological aspects as well as the hypothesis that CMV may break tolerance and induce potentially encephalitogenic autoantibodies. Case presentation A 33-year-old woman was admitted with features of encephalitis, rapidly progressing into a catatonic state. The patient tested negative for presence of herpes simplex virus DNA in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and had elevated liver enzymes and hepatomegaly at computed tomography scan (CT) examination. CT scan and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed only a rudimentary spleen. Initially, serum was negative for anti-CMV IgM, but borderline for anti-CMV IgG by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. However, a more sensitive assay resulted in a positive specific IgM Western blot profile and low IgG avidity, suggesting primary CMV infection. Further, CMV DNA was retrospectively detected in a CSF sample collected at admission. We also detected antineuronal autoantibodies, which stained GAD-positive neurons in the hippocampus. The patient was treated by a combination of prednisone, intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIg) and antivirals, which resulted in a dramatic amelioration of the patient’s neurological status. One year after admission the patient exhibited a nearly complete recovery with mild deficits in attention and memory. Conclusions A possible reason for the critical course of CMV infection could be the lack of a functional spleen in this patient, a condition previously associated with severe CMV infection. Prompt treatment with antiviral drugs, steroids and IVIg was most likely important for the positive outcome in this case and should be considered for similar cases of severe primary CMV infection associated with immunopathological phenomena.
In Search of Inclusive Growth: The Role of Economic Institutions and Policy  [PDF]
Francis Y. Kumah, Mathew Sandy
Modern Economy (ME) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/me.2013.411081
Abstract:


Inclusive economic growth is one of key challenges facing countries across the globe, notwithstanding initial conditions, particularly following the 2008 global economic slowdown. This paper searches for links between the quality of institutions, economic policies, economic growth and employment creation in low-income countries, using the specific case of Sierra Leone to illustrate. While its findings are consistent with the literature, the paper suggests that re-focusing economic policies on per capita real GDP growth may yield employment dividends, but well-targeted interventions would be needed to cater for the unemployed and to support vulnerable groups which may be adversely impacted by the very policies that drive growth.


Q&A: What is the Golgi apparatus, and why are we asking?
Sean Munro
BMC Biology , 2011, DOI: 10.1186/1741-7007-9-63
Abstract: Well, first of all, the Golgi is by no means always as described by its discoverer. The structure that Camillo Golgi first observed was a typical mammalian Golgi, with individual stacks that are linked to form long connected ribbons arranged around the microtubule organizing center near the nucleus. However, in some cell types - for example muscle - and in most invertebrates and plants, the Golgi is not a linked ribbon but rather exists as one to hundreds of individual stacks scattered through the cytosol. Worse still, some species lack altogether the classic 'stack of plates' arrangement of the cisternae. This led to the belief that some species - fungi in particular - had no Golgi apparatus, and suggestions that the organelle emerged only after the first eukaryotes. However, it transpired that in these fungi the Golgi cisternae are present but spend most, and perhaps all, of their time apart. In more extreme cases such as microsporidia the Golgi is no more than a cluster of tubes and vesicles. Figure 2, which shows an immunofluorescence image of the Golgi in a mammalian and a yeast cell, illustrates the different arrangement of the membranes. The current view is that all eukaryotic cells have a Golgi of some sort, and thus it was a feature of the last common eukaryotic ancestor.Yes and no - again. Despite varying greatly in shape and size, the Golgi performs some roles that are almost certainly shared by all cells and species. All eukaryotes make their membrane and secreted proteins in the ER, and require some mechanism for routing them out of the ER to various destinations inside the cell, or out of it. One key role of the Golgi is as the main sorting point for all of this post-ER traffic (Figure 3a). Proteins for different destinations all exit the ER in vesicles coated in the specialized coat protein COPII, and these fuse to each other and to the first, or 'cis', cisterna of the Golgi. ER resident proteins that have escaped in the COP II vesicles are then recyc
Empire and Intersectionality. Notes on the Production of Knowledge about US Imperialism
John Munro
Globality Studies Journal : Global History, Society, Civilization , 2008,
Abstract: This essay provides an intellectual history of US imperialism throughout and since the twentieth century based on the assumption that current academic analysis and debate can only be properly understood as in conversation with social movement knowledge production. The essay shows how critical traditions developed intersectional approaches to the study of empire, primarily between race and class, increasingly augmented by attention to gender, the land, sexuality, and culture. “Empire and Intersectionality” tracks the main currents in the academic literature before and since the 1960s, pointing to the continued overlap with ideas generated outside academia. The discussion then turns to an appraisal of some of the most recent interventions including contributions by prominent public intellectuals.
Resilience vs. Sustainability: The Future of Libraries
Karen Munro
In the Library with the Lead Pipe , 2011,
Abstract: The New Status Quo Inside and outside of libraries, everybody is nervous about change. We use terms like “disruptive change” and “tipping point” to talk about the fear that we are traveling into a world where we can’t continue to do what we’ve always done. Some people think we’ve already passed that point, and that [...]
Creacionismo.
Alice Munro
Revista de la Asociación Espa?ola de Neuropsiquiatría , 2008,
Abstract: Hacía unos a os que al borde de la carretera había aparecido un nuevo tipo de carteles. Desde hacía mucho tiempo había carteles que exhortaban a convertirse, o esos otros con grandes corazones rosas y electrocardiogramas planos destinados a desalentar el aborto. Lo que se exhibía ahora eran textos del Génesis: En el principio creó Dios los cielos y la tierra. / Y dijo Dios: Sea la luz; y fue la luz. / Y creó Dios el hombre a su imagen. Varón y hembra los creó.
Telling Stories: European Union cultural policies and institutional narratives in the audiovisual sector
Emily Munro
E-Sharp , 2004,
Abstract: Not available
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