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Reduced gray matter volumes in the superior temporal gyrus (STG) have been reported in patients with schizophrenia. Such volumetric abnormalities might denote alterations in cortical thickness, surface area, local gyrification or all of these factors. The STG can be anatomically divided into five subregions using automatic parcellation in FreeSurfer: lateral aspect of the STG, anterior transverse temporal gyrus of Heschl gyrus (HG), planum polare (PP) of the STG, planum temporale (PT) of the STG and transverse temporal sulcus.
We acquired magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) 3T scans from 40 age- and sex-matched patients with schizophrenia and 40 healthy subjects, and the scans were automatically processed using FreeSurfer. General linear models were used to assess group differences in regional volumes and detailed thickness, surface area and local gyrification.
As expected, patients with schizophrenia had significantly smaller bilateral STG volumes than healthy subjects. Of the five subregions in the STG, patients with schizophrenia showed significantly and marginally reduced volumes in the lateral aspect of the STG and PT of the STG bilaterally compared with healthy subjects. The volumetric alteration in bilateral lateral STG was derived from both the cortical thickness and surface area but not local gyrification. There was no significant laterality of the alteration in the lateral STG between patients and controls and no correlation among the structures and clinical characteristics.
These findings suggest that of five anatomical subregions in the STG, the lateral STG is one of the most meaningful regions for brain pathophysiology in schizophrenia.
To perform a safety assessment for the geological disposal of radioactive waste, it is important to understand the response characteristics of the disposal system. In this study, approximate analytical solutions for steady-state nuclide releases from the engineered barrier system (EBS) of a repository were derived for an orthogonal one-dimensional diffusion model. In these approximate analytical solutions, inventory depletion, decay during migration and the influence of groundwater flow in the excavation damaged zone (EDZ) were considered. These solutions were simplified by the Taylor theorem in order to clearly represent the response characteristics of the EBS. The validity of these solutions was shown by comparison with numerical solutions. The response characteristics of the EBS are useful for identifying target values for important parameters that would have the effect of improving the robustness of system safety. The robustness of the geological disposal system and the reliability of the safety assessment can thus potentially be improved using the approximate analytical solutions.
In order to enhance the safety of geological disposal and the reliability of the safety assessment carried out for each stage of the geological disposal project, an assessment methodology focused on a sensitivity analysis and an evaluation of importance, which incorporates “system understanding” and “information feedback” into the existing assessment approach, has been developed in this study. In this paper, the assessment methodology and the assessment results as applied for the transuranic (TRU) waste disposal system in Japan will be described. In the sensitivity analysis, an approximate analytical solution was used in order to understand the response characteristics of the engineered barrier system (EBS). In the importance evaluation, important factors relating to the robustness of system safety were identified based on the response characteristics. Furthermore, important features, events, and processes (FEPs) related to such factors and high-impact scenarios were identified based on the information accumulated through “system understanding” and “information feedback”. Based on this approach, the robustness of the TRU waste disposal system was assessed and measures for improving the robustness were identified.
In performance assessment of geological disposal systems for High Level
Radioactive Waste (HLW), the change of environment over the long-term must
be considered. Therefore, it is necessary to consider a wide range of
parameters concerned with radionuclides migration, especially the dependence
of solubility on geochemical environment. In this study, assuming that the
release rate of the nuclides from buffer material is limited by inventory
ultimately, the relationship between the initial inventory and the
solubility that produces a solubility-invariant maximum release rate from
the buffer is examined by using a simple steady-state analytical solution
without decay. As the result, the threshold of “effective” solubility in the
performance assessment of the geological disposal systems for HLW is
obtained as a function of initial inventory, distribution coefficient (Kd),
diffusion coefficient, and thickness, porosity and density of the buffer.
Also, the threshold of “effective” steady dissolution rate corresponding to
the threshold of “effective” solubility is obtained.
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