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Human activity shapes the wintering ecology of a migratory bird.

Glob Chang Biol 2021 Apr 13. Epub 2021 Apr 13.

Edward Grey Institute, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Human behavior profoundly affects the natural world. Migratory birds are particularly susceptible to adverse effects of human activities because the global networks of ecosystems on which birds rely are undergoing rapid change. In spite of these challenges, the blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla) is a thriving migratory species. Read More

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Evaluating sediment and water sampling methods for the estimation of deep-sea biodiversity using environmental DNA.

Sci Rep 2021 Apr 12;11(1):7856. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Centre Brest, Laboratoire Environnement Profond (REM/EEP/LEP), IFREMER, CS10070, 29280, Plouzané, France.

Despite representing one of the largest biomes on earth, biodiversity of the deep seafloor is still poorly known. Environmental DNA metabarcoding offers prospects for fast inventories and surveys, yet requires standardized sampling approaches and careful choice of environmental substrate. Here, we aimed to optimize the genetic assessment of prokaryote (16S), protistan (18S V4), and metazoan (18S V1-V2, COI) communities, by evaluating sampling strategies for sediment and aboveground water, deployed simultaneously at one deep-sea site. Read More

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Phycotoxin-Enriched Sea Spray Aerosols: Methods, Mechanisms, and Human Exposure.

Environ Sci Technol 2021 Apr 12. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Laboratory of Environmental Toxicology and Aquatic Ecology, Department of Animal Sciences and Aquatic Ecology, Ghent University, Campus Coupure, Coupure links 653, 9000 Ghent, Belgium.

To date, few studies have examined the role of sea spray aerosols (SSAs) in human exposure to harmful and beneficial marine compounds. Two groups of phycotoxins (brevetoxins and ovatoxins) have been reported to induce respiratory syndromes during harmful algal blooms. The aerosolization and coastal air concentrations of other common marine phycotoxins have, however, never been examined. Read More

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The Enigma of Substrate Recognition and Catalytic Efficiency of APE1-Like Enzymes.

Front Cell Dev Biol 2021 26;9:617161. Epub 2021 Mar 26.

Institute of Chemical Biology and Fundamental Medicine, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Novosibirsk, Russia.

Despite significant achievements in the elucidation of the nature of protein-DNA contacts that control the specificity of nucleotide incision repair (NIR) by apurinic/apyrimidinic (AP) endonucleases, the question on how a given nucleotide is accommodated by the active site of the enzyme remains unanswered. Therefore, the main purpose of our study was to compare kinetics of conformational changes of three homologous APE1-like endonucleases (insect Rrp1, amphibian xAPE1, and fish zAPE1) during their interaction with various damaged DNA substrates, i.e. Read More

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AAZTA-squaramide ester competing with DOTA-, DTPA- and CHX-A-DTPA-analogues: Promising tool for Lu-labeling of monoclonal antibodies under mild conditions.

Nucl Med Biol 2021 Mar 26;96-97:80-93. Epub 2021 Mar 26.

Department of Chemistry - TRIGA site, Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany. Electronic address:

Background: Combining the advantages of both cyclic and acyclic chelator systems, AAZTA (1,4-bis(carboxymethyl)-6-[bis(carboxymethyl)]amino-6-methylperhydro-1,4-diazepine) is well suited for complexation of various diagnostic and therapeutic radiometals such as gallium-68, scandium-44 and lutetium-177 under mild conditions. Due to its specificity for primary amines and pH dependent binding properties, squaric acid (SA) represents an excellent tool for selective coupling of the appropriate chelator to different target vectors. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate radiolabeling properties of the novel bifunctional AAZTA-SA being coupled to a model antibody (bevacizumab) in comparison to DOTA-SA, DTPA-p-Bn-SA and CHX-A″-DTPA-p-Bn-SA using the therapeutic nuclide lutetium-177. Read More

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Long-read assembly of a Great Dane genome highlights the contribution of GC-rich sequence and mobile elements to canine genomes.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2021 Mar;118(11)

Department of Human Genetics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109;

Technological advances have allowed improvements in genome reference sequence assemblies. Here, we combined long- and short-read sequence resources to assemble the genome of a female Great Dane dog. This assembly has improved continuity compared to the existing Boxer-derived (CanFam3. Read More

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Assessing the degradation of ancient milk proteins through site-specific deamidation patterns.

Sci Rep 2021 Apr 8;11(1):7795. Epub 2021 Apr 8.

BioArCh, Department of Archaeology, University of York, York, UK.

The origins, prevalence and nature of dairying have been long debated by archaeologists. Within the last decade, new advances in high-resolution mass spectrometry have allowed for the direct detection of milk proteins from archaeological remains, including ceramic residues, dental calculus, and preserved dairy products. Proteins recovered from archaeological remains are susceptible to post-excavation and laboratory contamination, a particular concern for ancient dairying studies as milk proteins such as beta-lactoglobulin (BLG) and caseins are potential laboratory contaminants. Read More

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Novel potent bifunctional carboxylesterase inhibitors based on a polyfluoroalkyl-2-imino-1,3-dione scaffold.

Eur J Med Chem 2021 Mar 15;218:113385. Epub 2021 Mar 15.

Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, 48109, USA; Department of Neurology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, 48109, USA; Center of Computational Medicine and Bioinformatics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, 48109, USA. Electronic address:

An expanded series of alkyl 2-arylhydrazinylidene-3-oxo-3-polyfluoroalkylpropionates (HOPs) 3 was obtained via Cu(OAc)-catalyzed azo coupling. All were nanomolar inhibitors of carboxylesterase (CES), while moderate or weak inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase and butyrylcholinesterase. Steady-state kinetics studies showed that HOPs 3 are mixed type inhibitors of the three esterases. Read More

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Spatial distribution and level of contamination of potentially toxic elements in sediments and soils of a biological reserve wetland, northern Amazon region of Ecuador.

J Environ Manage 2021 Apr 5;289:112495. Epub 2021 Apr 5.

Green Engineering & Resources Research Group (GER), Departamento de Química e Ingeniería de Procesos y Recursos, ETSIIT, Universidad de Cantabria, Avda. de Los Castros 46, 39005, Santander, Cantabria, Spain. Electronic address:

This study quantifies the degree of pollution and assess the ecological risk of As, Ba, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Mo, Ni, Pb, V and Zn in sediments and soils of the Limoncocha Biological Reserve (Ecuador), identified as a Ramsar site with high ecological and socioeconomic value. The hydrologic system of the Reserve is mainly formed by two rivers that drain into the Limoncocha lagoon, which occupies only five percent of the protected area but support a high anthropic influence. Local statistical baseline of studied potentially toxic elements is established using cumulative frequency method, and Al is selected as reference element due to the good correlation with the studied elements. Read More

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Investigation of the Wilson gene ATP7B transcriptional start site and the effect of core promoter alterations.

Sci Rep 2021 Apr 7;11(1):7674. Epub 2021 Apr 7.

Biomedical Research Laboratory, 1st Department of Internal Medicine, University Hospital, Frankfurt, Germany.

Pathogenic genetic variants in the ATP7B gene cause Wilson disease, a recessive disorder of copper metabolism showing a significant variability in clinical phenotype. Promoter mutations have been rarely reported, and controversial data exist on the site of transcription initiation (the core promoter). We quantitatively investigated transcription initiation and found it to be located in immediate proximity of the translational start. Read More

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An extended catalogue of tandem alternative splice sites in human tissue transcriptomes.

PLoS Comput Biol 2021 Apr 7;17(4):e1008329. Epub 2021 Apr 7.

Skolkovo Institute for Science and Technology, Moscow, Russia.

Tandem alternative splice sites (TASS) is a special class of alternative splicing events that are characterized by a close tandem arrangement of splice sites. Most TASS lack functional characterization and are believed to arise from splicing noise. Based on the RNA-seq data from the Genotype Tissue Expression project, we present an extended catalogue of TASS in healthy human tissues and analyze their tissue-specific expression. Read More

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Tracheostomy in free-flap reconstruction of the oral cavity: can it be avoided? A cohort study of 187 patients.

ANZ J Surg 2021 Apr 6. Epub 2021 Apr 6.

Head and Neck Surgery, Chris O'Brien Lifehouse, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Background: Head and neck surgeons are moving away from routine tracheostomy in free-flap reconstruction. We reviewed prophylactic tracheostomy use in patients undergoing oral cavity or oropharynx free-flap reconstruction to identify patient groups who avoided tracheostomy. Secondary aims were to describe complications associated with and without tracheostomy. Read More

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[Online examination course instead of classroom teaching: adaptation of medical student teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic].

Ophthalmologe 2021 Apr 6. Epub 2021 Apr 6.

Klinik für Augenheilkunde, Universitätsklinikum Freiburg, Killianstr. 5, 79106, Freiburg, Deutschland.

Background: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic restricted face-to-face interactions of medical students and teachers.

Objective: To develop and evaluate an online course for ophthalmology examination techniques for medical students and to determine the impact of the course on the practical objective structured clinical examination (OSCE).

Material And Methods: The online examination course was developed as a video-based tutorial according to the SMART (specific, measurable, activating, reasonable, time-bound) principle covering all topics of the National Competency-based Catalogue of Learning Objectives for Medical Education and made available to medical students in the ophthalmology course. Read More

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Epitope-directed monoclonal antibody production using a mixed antigen cocktail facilitates antibody characterization and validation.

Commun Biol 2021 Apr 6;4(1):441. Epub 2021 Apr 6.

Cardiovascular Research Institute, Department of Medicine, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, National University Health System, Singapore, Singapore.

High quality, well-validated antibodies are needed to mitigate irreproducibility and clarify conflicting data in science. We describe an epitope-directed monoclonal antibody (mAb) production method that addresses issues of antibody quality, validation and utility. The workflow is illustrated by generating mAbs against multiple in silico-predicted epitopes on human ankyrin repeat domain 1 (hANKRD1) in a single hybridoma production cycle. Read More

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Identifying resting locations of a small elusive forest carnivore using a two-stage model accounting for GPS measurement error and hidden behavioral states.

Mov Ecol 2021 Apr 6;9(1):17. Epub 2021 Apr 6.

US Geological Survey, Western Fisheries Research Center, Columbia River Research Laboratory, Cook, WA, 98605, USA.

Background: Studies of animal movement using location data are often faced with two challenges. First, time series of animal locations are likely to arise from multiple behavioral states (e.g. Read More

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Use of Gracile and semi-tendinosus tendons (GRAST) for the reconstruction of irreparable rotator cuff tears.

BMC Musculoskelet Disord 2021 Apr 5;22(1):331. Epub 2021 Apr 5.

Unité de chirurgie du membre supérieur, Clinique Saint Jean l'Ermitage, 272 avenue Marc Jacquet, 77000, Melun, France.

Background: Irreparable rotator cuff tears are common and difficult to treat. Techniques for "filling the loss of substance" require fixation to the rotator cuff stump (tendon augmentation) or to the glenoid (superior capsular reconstruction), which are complicated by the narrow working zone of the subacromial space. The main objective of this study was to determine whether a braided graft of gracilis (GR) and semitendinosus (ST) could fill a loss of tendon substance from an irreparable rupture of the supra- and infraspinatus, by fixing the graft to the greater tuberosity and the spine of the scapula. Read More

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Reopening the doors of Dutch nursing homes during the COVID-19 crisis: results of an in-depth monitoring.

Int Psychogeriatr 2021 Apr 5:1-8. Epub 2021 Apr 5.

Department of Primary and Community Care, Radboud University Nijmegen, Medical Center, Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

Objectives: On May 11, the Dutch Government allowed 26 nursing homes to welcome 1 visitor per resident, after 2 months of lockdown. The study aimed to monitor in-depth the feasibility of the regulations and their impact on the well-being of residents, their visitors, and healthcare staff.

Design: Mixed-methods study in 5 of the 26 facilities; the facilities were affiliated to an academic network of nursing homes. Read More

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Expansion of Functional Myeloid-Derived Suppressor Cells in Controlled Human Malaria Infection.

Front Immunol 2021 19;12:625712. Epub 2021 Mar 19.

Institute of Tropical Medicine, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany.

Malaria can cause life-threatening complications which are often associated with inflammatory reactions. More subtle, but also contributing to the burden of disease are chronic, often subclinical infections, which result in conditions like anemia and immunologic hyporesponsiveness. Although very frequent, such infections are difficult to study in endemic regions because of interaction with concurrent infections and immune responses. Read More

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Knowing when to talk? Plant genome editing as a site for pre-engagement institutional reflexivity.

Public Underst Sci 2021 Apr 3:963662521999796. Epub 2021 Apr 3.

UK Research and Innovation, UK.

Citizen and stakeholder engagement is frequently portrayed as vital for socially accountable science policy but there is a growing understanding of how institutional dynamics shape engagement exercises in ways that prevent them from realising their full potential. Limited attention has been devoted to developing the means to expose institutional features, allow policy-makers to reflect on how they will shape engagement and respond appropriately. Here, therefore, we develop and test a methodological framework to facilitate pre-engagement institutional reflexivity with one of the United Kingdom's eminent science organisations as it grappled with a new, high-profile and politicised technology, genome editing. Read More

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Dislocations at coalescence boundaries in heteroepitaxial GaN/sapphire studied after the epitaxial layer has completely coalesced.

Ultramicroscopy 2021 Mar 11:113258. Epub 2021 Mar 11.

Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy, University of Cambridge, 27 Charles Babbage Road, Cambridge CB3 0FS, UK. Electronic address:

We have performed cross-sectional scanning capacitance microscopy (SCM), cathodoluminescence (CL) microscopy in the scanning electron microscope (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) all on the same few-micron region of a GaN/sapphire sample. To achieve this, it was necessary to develop a process flow which allowed the same features viewed in a cleaved cross-section to be traced from one microscope to the next and to adapt the focused ion beam preparation of the TEM lamella to allow preparation of a site-specific sample on a pre-cleaved cross-section. Growth of our GaN/sapphire samples involved coalescence of three-dimensional islands to form a continuous film. Read More

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Percutaneous Reconstruction of the Medial Patello-Femoral Ligament Using Dynamic Gracilis Tendon Transfer.

Orthop Traumatol Surg Res 2021 Mar 31:102910. Epub 2021 Mar 31.

Service de chirurgie orthopédique et traumatologique, Centre Hospitalo-Universitaire Tours - Université de Médecine de Tours François Rabelais, 37000 Tours, France.

Background: Many techniques have been described for reconstructing the medial patello-femoral ligament (MPFL), using a variety of transplants and fixation methods to treat patello-femoral dislocation. The main challenge with static transfers is to position the femoral fixation point at the site that best restores MPFL anisometry. The objective of this cadaveric study was to propose a version of the initially described dynamic gracilis transfer technique that can be performed percutaneously. Read More

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Small Molecule and Macrocyclic Pyrazole Derived Inhibitors of Myeloperoxidase (MPO).

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2021 Mar 31:128010. Epub 2021 Mar 31.

Research and Development, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, P. O. Box 5400, Princeton, NJ 08543 USA.

Myeloperoxidase (MPO), a critical enzyme in antimicrobial host-defense, has been implicated in chronic inflammatory diseases such as coronary artery disease. The design and evaluation of MPO inhibitors for the treatment of cardiovascular disease is reported herein. Starting with the MPO and triazolopyridine 3 crystal structure, novel inhibitors were designed incorporating a substituted pyrazole, which allowed for substituents to interact with hydrophobic and hydrophilic patches in the active site. Read More

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