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Photonic crystal surfaces represent a class of resonant optical structures that are capable of supporting high intensity electromagnetic standing waves with near-field and far-field properties that can be exploited for high sensitivity detection of biomolecules and cells. While modulation of the resonant wavelength of a photonic crystal by the dielectric permittivity of adsorbed biomaterials enables label-free detection, the resonance can also be tuned to coincide with the excitation wavelength of common fluorescent tags - including organic molecules and semiconductor quantum dots. Photonic crystals are also capable of efficiently channeling fluorescent emission into a preferred direction for enhanced extraction efficiency. Photonic crystals can be designed to support multiple resonant modes that can perform label free detection, enhanced fluorescence excitation, and enhanced fluorescence extraction simultaneously on the same device. Because photonic crystal surfaces may be inexpensively produced over large surface areas by nanoreplica molding processes, they can be incorporated into disposable labware for applications such as pharmaceutical high throughput screening. In this talk, the optical properties of surface photonic crystals will be reviewed and several applications will be described, including results from screening a 200,000-member chemical compound library for inhibitors of protein-DNA interactions, gene expression microarrays, and high sensitivity of protein biomarkers.
Cognitive impairment is a core feature of psychotic disorders, but the profile of impairment across adulthood, particularly in African-American populations, remains unclear.
Using cross-sectional data from a case–control study of African-American adults with affective (n = 59) and nonaffective (n = 68) psychotic disorders, we examined cognitive functioning between early and middle adulthood (ages 20–60) on measures of general cognitive ability, language, abstract reasoning, processing speed, executive function, verbal memory, and working memory.
Both affective and nonaffective psychosis patients showed substantial and widespread cognitive impairments. However, comparison of cognitive functioning between controls and psychosis groups throughout early (ages 20–40) and middle (ages 40–60) adulthood also revealed age-associated group differences. During early adulthood, the nonaffective psychosis group showed increasing impairments with age on measures of general cognitive ability and executive function, while the affective psychosis group showed increasing impairment on a measure of language ability. Impairments on other cognitive measures remained mostly stable, although decreasing impairments on measures of processing speed, memory and working memory were also observed.
These findings suggest similarities, but also differences in the profile of cognitive dysfunction in adults with affective and nonaffective psychotic disorders. Both affective and nonaffective patients showed substantial and relatively stable impairments across adulthood. The nonaffective group also showed increasing impairments with age in general and executive functions, and the affective group showed an increasing impairment in verbal functions, possibly suggesting different underlying etiopathogenic mechanisms.
In the last years various OH surveys at 1612 MHz have been carried out in the galactic bulge region with high spatial resolution (Lindqvist et al. 1992; Sevenster et al. 1997; Sjouwerman et al. 1998) which have resulted in the detection of over five hundred double-peaked objects commonly associated with oxygen-rich AGB stars. More recently, the ISOGAL survey, which is part of the ISO mission, scanned several regions along the galactic plane, including the inner bulge, at 6.8 and 15 micron wavelengths. In this work we report an analysis of 104 OH/IR stars in the bulge, based on near and mid-infrared observations. Mass-loss rates, luminosities and masses are determined for a sub-sample of stars, for which near-infrared data are available in the literature.
Cowpea (Vigna unguiculata L. Walp) is the most important food grain legume in Africa. Cowpea is nodulated by rhizobium bacteria in almost all soils of the tropics, but studies performed in the 1970s and 1980s in Nigeria suggested only modest responses of grain yield in the field to inoculation of selected rhizobium strains. More recently, experiments performed in Brazil have shown that cowpea responded to inoculation of rhizobium selected locally and grain yields increased by up to 30%. We tested some of the Brazilian strains on cowpea at a site in northern Mozambique and at several sites in Northern Ghana. At all sites phosphorus fertilizer (26 kg P ha−1) was added to all plots. At the site in Mozambique despite considerable damage to the crop by the parasitic yellow witchweed (Alectra vogelii), grain yields were more than doubled by inoculation of one of the Brazilian strains and reached 1.4 Mg ha−1. In on-station experiments conducted in 2012 in June and August in northern Ghana using the local cowpea variety Padi-Tuya as the test crop, nodule weight at 35 days after planting (dap) tripled with rhizobium strain BR 3299 (530 mg plant−1) in August with the other inoculants (BR 3267 and a mixture of BR 3267 and BR 3299) also increased nodule weight to over 300 mg plant−1. In the first on-station experiment, grain yields were doubled by the inoculation of any of the three rhizobium strains, and in the second experiment, significant increases in grain yield ranged from 39% to 57% and reached over 2.0 Mg ha−1. Similar increases in nodulation and grain yield due to inoculation were observed in 22 on-farm trials. Nitrogen fertilizer application promoted vegetative growth but did not increase grain yield and nodulation. Inoculating cowpea with highly effective rhizobium strains can therefore enhance grain yield of smallholder farmers in Africa.
High spectral and time resolution observations show that the monoperiodic β Cephei star BW Vul presents differences in both line profiles and velocities from one cycle to another, which may be due to the consequence of the passage of two strong shock waves.
Undernutrition exposure during the perinatal period reduces the growth kinetic of the offspring and sensitizes it to the development of chronic adult metabolic diseases both in animals and in humans. Previous studies have demonstrated that a 50% maternal food restriction performed during the last week of gestation and during lactation has both short- and long-term consequences in the male rat offspring. Pups from undernourished mothers present a decreased intrauterine (IUGR) and extrauterine growth restriction. This is associated with a drastic reduction in their leptin plasma levels during lactation, and exhibit programming of their stress neuroendocrine systems (corticotroph axis and sympatho-adrenal system) in adulthood. In this study, we report that perinatally undernourished 6-month-old adult animals demonstrated increased leptinemia (at PND200), blood pressure (at PND180), food intake (from PND28 to PND168), locomotor activity (PND187) and altered regulation of glycemia (PND193). Cross-fostering experiments indicate that these alterations were prevented in IUGR offspring nursed by control mothers during lactation. Interestingly, the nutritional status of mothers during lactation (ad libitum feeding v. undernutrition) dictates the leptin plasma levels in pups, consistent with decreased leptin concentration in the milk of mothers subjected to perinatal undernutrition. As it has been reported that postnatal leptin levels in rodent neonates may have long-term metabolic consequences, restoration of plasma leptin levels in pups during lactation may contribute to the beneficial effects of cross-fostering IUGR offspring to control mothers. Collectively, our data suggest that modification of milk components may offer new therapeutic perspectives to prevent the programming of adult diseases in offspring from perinatally undernourished mothers.
We carried out an extensive photometric and spectroscopic investigation of the SPB binary, HD 25558 (see Fig. 1 for the time and geographic distribution of the observations). The ~2000 spectra obtained at 13 observatories during 5 observing seasons, the ground-based multi-colour light curves and the photometric data from the MOST satellite revealed that this object is a double-lined spectroscopic binary with a very long orbital period of about 9 years. We determined the physical parameters of the components, and have found that both lie within the SPB instability strip. Accordingly, both components show line-profile variations consistent with stellar pulsations. Altogether, 11 independent frequencies and one harmonic frequency were identified in the data. The observational data do not allow the inference of a reliable orbital solution, thus, disentangling cannot be performed on the spectra. Since the lines of the two components are never completely separated, the analysis is very complicated. Nevertheless, pixel-by-pixel variability analysis of the cross-correlated line profiles was successful, and we were able to attribute all the frequencies to the primary or secondary component. Spectroscopic and photometric mode-identification was also performed for several of these frequencies of both binary components. The spectroscopic mode-identification results suggest that the inclination and rotation of the two components are rather different. While the primary is a slow rotator with ~6 d rotation period, seen at ~60° inclination, the secondary rotates fast with ~1.2 d rotation period, and is seen at ~20° inclination. Our spectropolarimetric measurements revealed that the secondary component has a magnetic field with at least a few hundred Gauss strength, while no magnetic field was detected in the primary.
The detailed analysis and results of this study will be published elsewhere.
The motivation of this study is to provide answers to questions rising with 3D stacking of semiconductor chips. This includes the development and validation of concepts for 1) Through Silicon Via (TSV) formation, 2) metal layer build-up, 3) various types of assembly and packaging concepts and methods, as well as 4) process characterization.
The investigations discussed here have been conducted on test wafer (ATEC2) developed by Fraunhofer IZM-ASSID. This design contains dedicated test structures which have been implemented to enable different unit processes and allows easy physical analysis. One of those test structures has been used to study the impact of the TSV density on the stress generation after TSV fill, anneal and CMP (chemical mechanical planarization) including copper protrusion and planarization behaviour. First results of the interaction between different TSV plating bath chemicals, anneal procedures and wafer bow obtained using test wafer ATEC1 were already presented during ICPT 2011.
The process flow applied in this investigation was (1) TSV filling by electro-plating, (2) anneal, and (3) CMP. Physical analysis including inline metrology has been conducted between all process steps.
The test wafers processed were divided into two groups according to the utilized copper plating bath chemistries. The copper TSV metallization was carried out by electro-chemical deposition in plating bath chemicals from two different suppliers. 3D microscope inspection was conducted for surface analysis. After TSV filling the copper surface shows protrusion on top of the TSVs and ring-shaped non-uniformities around the filled TSV. These structures were analysed after each step of the process flow.
An anneal process was conducted after TSV plating. The annealing temperature was varied to investigate its influence on the material properties (protrusion caused by copper recrystallization) and the dip behaviour. The experiments were accomplished at 250 degree Celsius and above.
Afterwards all test samples were processed by CMP with different selective slurries and analysed by AFM (atomic force microscopy) and optical methods. Bow and warpage measurements of the test wafers taken after each process step have been analysed.
Our investigation has demonstrated the influence of the additives on the behaviour of different plating bath chemistries during temperature treatment (copper recrystallization) and therefore also the planarization behaviour after CMP.
In recent years great importance has been given to the adverse effects of particulate matter (PM) in health, and several epidemiological studies correlating the airborne particles with pulmonary injury have been carried out. The adverse effect of short- and long-term expositions to PM can, indeed, cause a variety of effects, from minor effects on the respiratory system to serious oncogenic effects that can lead to precocious death and are considered one of the top environmental public health concerns. Some cytogenetic techniques, as micronucleus assay, allow to detect chromosome breakage and loss by measuring the formation of micronuclei and proved to be a good tool in the evaluation of genotoxic damage induced by PM. Thus genotoxic effects can be evaluated by micronucleus test in order to identify a gradient of potential exposure and to assess environmental monitoring. However, cross investigations involving biomarkers of genotoxicity and electron microscopy PM-induced tracheal and lung damages in natural populations are not common.