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Bipolar Disorder is a devastating disease with a genetic heritability. An orchestra of around 500 gene variants is leading to vulnerability.
One interesting candidate gene group are the socalled CLOCK GENES. The molecular 24h clock has several CLOCK GENES and the last gene ARNTL encodes for an activator of MAOA transcription and leads therefore to changes in neurotransmitter levels.
Genotyping of 150 paricipants with Bipolar Disorder and 78 healthy controls with the Illumina GWAS chip Omniexpress 1.1. Hypothesis driven extraction of ARNTL SNPs with the software PLINK. Statistical analysis with Chi square test with SPSS.
Patients with Bipolar Disorder differ significantly in ARNTL genotypes compared to healthy controls. Details are presented during the poster session.
Circadian rhythms seem to play an important pathogenetic mechanism in Bipolar Disorder.
Chitinous arm hooks (onychites) of belemnoid coleoid cephalopods are widely distributed in Mesozoic sediments. Due to their relative abundance and variable morphology compared with the single, bullet-shaped, belemnite rostrum, arm hooks came into the focus of micropaleontologists as a promising index fossil group for the Jurassic–Cretaceous rock record and have been the target of functional, ecological, and phylogenetic interpretations in the past. Based on three well-preserved arm crowns of the Toarcian diplobelid Chondroteuthis wunnenbergi, we analyzed the shape of a total of 87 micro-hooks. The arm crown of Chondroteuthis is unique in having uniserial rather than biserial hooks. The first application of elliptic Fourier shape analysis to the arm weapons of belemnoid coleoids allows for the distinction of four micro-hook morphotypes and the quantification of shape variation within these morphotypes. Based on the best-preserved arm crown, we reconstructed the distribution of morphotypes within the arm crown and along a single arm. Our quantitative data support former observations that smaller hooks were found close to the mouth and at the most distal arm parts, while the largest hooks were found in the central part of the arm crown. Furthermore, we found a distinct arm differentiation, as not every arm was equipped with the same hook morphotype. Here, we report the functional specialization of the belemnoid arm crown for the first time and speculate about the potential function of the four morphotypes based on comparisons with modern cephalopods. Our analyses suggest a highly adapted functional morphology and intra-individual distribution of belemnoid hooks serving distinct purposes mainly during prey capture.
Plant sterols (PS) lower LDL-cholesterol, an established risk factor for CHD. Endothelial dysfunction and low-grade inflammation are two important features in the development of atherosclerosis. Whether PS affect biomarkers of endothelial function and low-grade inflammation is not well studied. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of regular intake of PS on biomarkers of endothelial dysfunction and low-grade inflammation. In a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled, parallel-group study, which was primarily designed to investigate the effect of PS intake on vascular function (clinicaltrials.gov: NCT01803178), 240 hypercholesterolaemic but otherwise healthy men and women consumed a low-fat spread with added PS (3 g/d) or a placebo spread for 12 weeks. Endothelial dysfunction biomarkers (both vascular and intracellular adhesion molecules 1 and soluble endothelial-selectin) and low-grade inflammation biomarkers (C-reactive protein, serum amyloid A, IL-6, IL-8, TNF-α and soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1) were measured using a multi-array detection system based on electrochemiluminescence technology. Biomarkers were combined using z-scores. Differences in changes from baseline between the PS and the placebo groups were assessed. The intake of PS did not significantly change the individual biomarkers of endothelial dysfunction and low-grade inflammation. The z-scores for endothelial dysfunction (−0·02; 95 % CI −0·15, 0·11) and low-grade inflammation (−0·04; 95 % CI −0·16, 0·07) were also not significantly changed after PS intake compared with placebo. In conclusion, biomarkers of endothelial dysfunction and low-grade inflammation were not affected by regular intake of 3 g/d PS for 12 weeks in hypercholesterolaemic men and women.
As physical activity may modify the effect of the apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 allele on the risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease (AD) dementia, we tested for such a gene–environment interaction in a sample of general practice patients aged ⩾75 years.
Data were derived from follow-up waves I–IV of the longitudinal German study on Ageing, Cognition and Dementia in Primary Care Patients (AgeCoDe). The Kaplan–Meier survival method was used to estimate dementia- and AD-free survival times. Multivariable Cox regression was used to assess individual associations of APOE ε4 and physical activity with risk for dementia and AD, controlling for covariates. We tested for gene–environment interaction by calculating three indices of additive interaction.
Among the randomly selected sample of 6619 patients, 3327 (50.3%) individuals participated in the study at baseline and 2810 (42.5%) at follow-up I. Of the 2492 patients without dementia included at follow-up I, 278 developed dementia (184 AD) over the subsequent follow-up interval of 4.5 years. The presence of the APOE ε4 allele significantly increased and higher physical activity significantly decreased risk for dementia and AD. The co-presence of APOE ε4 with low physical activity was associated with higher risk for dementia and AD and shorter dementia- and AD-free survival time than the presence of APOE ε4 or low physical activity alone. Indices of interaction indicated no significant interaction between low physical activity and the APOE ε4 allele for general dementia risk, but a possible additive interaction for AD risk.
Physical activity even in late life may be effective in reducing conversion to dementia and AD or in delaying the onset of clinical manifestations. APOE ε4 carriers may particularly benefit from increasing physical activity with regard to their risk for AD.
Whether late-onset depression is a risk factor for or a prodrome of dementia remains unclear. We investigated the impact of depressive symptoms and early- v. late-onset depression on subsequent dementia in a cohort of elderly general-practitioner patients (n = 2663, mean age = 81.2 years).
Risk for subsequent dementia was estimated over three follow-ups (each 18 months apart) depending on history of depression, particularly age of depression onset, and current depressive symptoms using proportional hazard models. We also examined the additive prediction of incident dementia by depression beyond cognitive impairment.
An increase of dementia risk for higher age cut-offs of late-onset depression was found. In analyses controlling for age, sex, education, and apolipoprotein E4 genotype, we found that very late-onset depression (aged ⩾70 years) and current depressive symptoms separately predicted all-cause dementia. Combined very late-onset depression with current depressive symptoms was specifically predictive for later Alzheimer's disease (AD; adjusted hazard ratio 5.48, 95% confidence interval 2.41–12.46, p < 0.001). This association was still significant after controlling for cognitive measures, but further analyses suggested that it was mediated by subjective memory impairment with worries.
Depression might be a prodrome of AD but not of dementia of other aetiology as very late-onset depression in combination with current depressive symptoms, possibly emerging as a consequence of subjectively perceived worrisome cognitive deterioration, was most predictive. As depression parameters and subjective memory impairment predicted AD independently of objective cognition, clinicians should take this into account.
It has been a long standing problem in astrochemistry to explain how molecules can form in a highly dilute environment such as the interstellar medium. In the last decennium more and more evidence has been found that the observed mix of small and complex, stable and highly transient species in space is the cumulative result of gas phase and solid state reactions as well as gas-grain interactions. Solid state reactions on icy dust grains are specifically found to play an important role in the formation of the more complex “organic” compounds. In order to investigate the underlying physical and chemical processes detailed laboratory based experiments are needed that simulate surface reactions triggered by processes as different as thermal heating, photon (UV) irradiation and particle (atom, cosmic ray, electron) bombardment of interstellar ice analogues. Here, some of the latest research performed in the Sackler Laboratory for Astrophysics in Leiden, the Netherlands is reviewed. The focus is on hydrogenation, i.e., H-atom addition reactions and vacuum ultraviolet irradiation of interstellar ice analogues at astronomically relevant temperatures. It is shown that solid state processes are crucial in the chemical evolution of the interstellar medium, providing pathways towards molecular complexity in space.
An epidemiological study of hepatitis A and enteroviruses was conducted in a military diving training school, by evaluating the viral contamination of water using an ultrafiltration concentration technique, and assessing seroconversion and the presence of virus in stool specimens obtained from 109 divers and 48 controls. Three of 29 water specimens were positive for enterovirus by cell culture and 9 by molecular hybridization. There was little or no risk of virus infection during the training course (49 h exposure) because there was no significant difference between divers and controls for both viral isolation and seroconversion. However, a higher percentage of coxsackievirus B4 and B5 seropositive divers suggests that these were more exposed during previous water training. No hepatitis A virus (HAV) detection and no seroconversion to HAV was observed. The rate of HAV seropositive subjects was 17% in this 24·5-year-old population
The use of laser-accelerated protons as a particle probe for the detection of electric fields in plasmas has led in recent years to a wealth of novel information regarding the ultrafast plasma dynamics following high intensity laser-matter interactions. The high spatial quality and short duration of these beams have been essential to this purpose. We will discuss some of the most recent results obtained with this diagnostic at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (UK) and at LULI - Ecole Polytechnique (France), also applied to conditions of interest to conventional Inertial Confinement Fusion. In particular, the technique has been used to measure electric fields responsible for proton acceleration from solid targets irradiated with ps pulses, magnetic fields formed by ns pulse irradiation of solid targets, and electric fields associated with the ponderomotive channelling of ps laser pulses in under-dense plasmas.
As the number of detections of complex molecules keeps increasing, answering the question about their formation becomes more pressing. Many of the saturated organic molecules are found to have a very low gas phase formation rate and are therefore thought to be formed on the icy surfaces of dust grains. In the Sackler Laboratory for Astrophysics we started a systematic study of the surface reaction routes that have been suggested over the years. Here we present the experimental results on the formation of methanol and ethanol by hydrogenation reactions of carbon monoxide and acetaldehyde ice. Computer simulations of the surface processes under similar conditions using the continuous-time random-walk Monte Carlo technique reveal some of the underlying physical processes. A better understanding of the physical conditions in which these molecules are formed can help in the interpretation of the observational results. The CO hydrogenation results will appear in detail in Fuchs et al. (2008). For more details on ethanol formation we refer to Bisschop et al. (2007).
The interaction of high-intensity laser pulses with matter releases
instantaneously ultra-large currents of highly energetic electrons,
leading to the generation of highly-transient, large-amplitude electric
and magnetic fields. We report results of recent experiments in which such
charge dynamics have been studied by using proton probing techniques able
to provide maps of the electrostatic fields with high spatial and temporal
resolution. The dynamics of ponderomotive channeling in underdense plasmas
have been studied in this way, as also the processes of Debye sheath
formation and MeV ion front expansion at the rear of laser-irradiated thin
metallic foils. Laser-driven impulsive fields at the surface of solid
targets can be applied for energy-selective ion beam focusing.
The detection of interstellar molecules relies on the precise knowledge of spectral line positions from laboratory measurements. Technical developments of recent years have led to an extension of the accessible spectral range towards shorter wavelengths. New telescopes like SOFIA, the HIFI instrument aboard the Herschel satellite, and ALMA will be used for astrophysical observations in the terahertz region. The Cologne group has developed precise spectrometers to study molecules of astrophysical importance under laboratory conditions and to obtain characteristic spectra for their possible detection in space. We present recent results on light hydrides, carbon-chain molecules and more complex species.
We present the international collaboration MINE (Multi-λ INTEGRAL NEtwork) aimed at conducting multi wavelength observations of microquasars simultaneously with the INTEGRAL satellite. The first results of GRS 1915+105 are encouraging and those to come should help us to understand the physics of the accretion and ejection phenomena around a compact object.
Zinc-based buffer layers like ZnSe, ZnS, or wet-chemically deposited ZnO on Cu(In, Ga)(S, Se)2 absorber materials (CIGSSe) have yielded thin film solar cell efficiencies comparable to or even higher than standard CdS/CIGSSe cells. However, little is known about surface and interface properties of these novel buffer layers. In this contribution we characterize the specific chemical environment at the absorber/buffer-interface using X-ray Emission Spectroscopy (XES) and Photoelectron Spectroscopy (PES) in a complementary way. Evidence of intermixing and chemical reactions is found for different buffer materials and deposition methods.
For over two hundred years certain historians and art historians have been asserting that a portrait of Richard III can be found in the presentation miniature of one of Edward IV's manuscripts. This ‘portrait’ was the starting point of this investigation. The history of this myth has been traced, and that of the picture itself, its component parts and the book in which it appears, and it was the second phase of this research which revealed another complex trail of copies and imitations by illuminators and other artists.
InAs/(GaIn)Sb superlattice photodiodes with a cutoff wavelength of 8.711μm show adynamic impedance of R0A= 1.5 kωcm2at 77 K and a responsivity of 2 A/W, corresponding to a detectivity of D*= 1 x 1012 cmv√Hz/W. Diffusion limited performance is observed above 100 K. At lower temperatures the diodesare limited by generation-recombination currents. An analysis of the influence of different diode sidewall passivations on the surface contribution to the diode leakage current is presented. The out-of-plane electron mobility as well as the relative contributions of the electron and hole diffusion currents to the diode current were determined by a measurement of the magnetic field dependence of the reverse saturation current density of the diodes