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  • Hildebrandt, Thomas  (204)
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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Science (New York, N.Y.), 23 December 2011, Vol.334(6063), pp.1699-703
    Description: Several groups of tetrapods have expanded sesamoid (small, tendon-anchoring) bones into digit-like structures ("predigits"), such as pandas' "thumbs." Elephants similarly have expanded structures in the fat pads of their fore- and hindfeet, but for three centuries these have been overlooked as mere cartilaginous curiosities. We show that these are indeed massive sesamoids that employ a patchy mode of ossification of a massive cartilaginous precursor and that the predigits act functionally like digits. Further, we reveal clear osteological correlates of predigit joint articulation with the carpals/tarsals that are visible in fossils. Our survey shows that basal proboscideans were relatively "flat-footed" (plantigrade), whereas early elephantiforms evolved the more derived "tip-toed" (subunguligrade) morphology, including the predigits and fat pad, of extant elephants. Thus, elephants co-opted sesamoid bones into a role as false digits and used them for support as they changed their foot posture.
    Keywords: Biological Evolution ; Elephants -- Anatomy & Histology ; Foot -- Anatomy & Histology ; Sesamoid Bones -- Anatomy & Histology ; Toes -- Anatomy & Histology
    ISSN: 00368075
    E-ISSN: 1095-9203
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 2015, Vol.83(3), pp.649-654
    Description: Objective: Analysis of short- and long-term effects of rapid response across 3 different treatments for binge eating disorder (BED). Method: In a randomized clinical study comparing interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT), cognitive–behavioral therapy guided self-help (CBTgsh), and behavioral weight loss (BWL) treatment in 205 adults meeting Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.; DSM–IV ; APA, 1994 ) criteria for BED, the predictive value of rapid response, defined as ≥70% reduction in binge eating by Week 4, was determined for remission from binge eating and global eating disorder psychopathology at posttreatment, 6-, 12-, 18-, and 24-month follow-ups. Results: Rapid responders in CBTgsh, but not in IPT or BWL, showed significantly greater rates of remission from binge eating than nonrapid responders, which was sustained over the long term. Rapid and nonrapid responders in IPT and rapid responders in CBTgsh showed a greater remission from binge eating than nonrapid responders in CBTgsh and BWL. Rapid responders in CBTgsh showed greater remission from binge eating than rapid responders in BWL. Although rapid responders in all treatments had lower global eating disorder psychopathology than nonrapid responders in the short term, rapid responders in CBTgsh and IPT were more improved than those in BWL and nonrapid responders in each treatment. Rapid responders in BWL did not differ from nonrapid responders in CBTgsh and IPT. Conclusion: Rapid response is a treatment-specific positive prognostic indicator of sustained remission from binge eating in CBTgsh. Regarding an evidence-based, stepped-care model, IPT, equally efficacious for rapid and nonrapid responders, could be investigated as a second-line treatment in case of nonrapid response to first-line CBTgsh. ; This study provides evidence for rapid response as a treatment-specific positive prognostic indicator of long-term remission in cognitive–behavioral guided self-help (CBTgsh), a low-intensity, low-cost treatment for binge eating disorder. ; In contrast, interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT), a specialty treatment, was comparably efficacious for both rapid and nonrapid responders, whereas nonrapid responders in CBTgsh and rapid and nonrapid responders in behavioral weight loss treatment showed the lowest remission rates. ; Monitoring rapid response can provide guidance regarding a switch from a low-intensity treatment (e.g., CBTgsh) to a more intensive treatment (e.g., IPT) to promote successful outcomes in individuals diagnosed with binge eating disorder.
    Keywords: Binge Eating Disorder ; Rapid Response ; Self-Help Treatment ; Interpersonal Psychotherapy ; Behavioral Weight Loss
    ISSN: 0022-006X
    E-ISSN: 1939-2117
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Biochemistry, 14 January 2014, Vol.53(1), pp.20-9
    Description: Phytochromes constitute a class of photoreceptors that can be photoconverted between two stable states. The tetrapyrrole chromophore absorbs in the red spectral region and displays fluorescence maxima above 700 nm, albeit with low quantum yields. Because this wavelength region is particularly advantageous for fluorescence-based deep tissue imaging, there is a strong interest to engineer phytochrome variants with increased fluorescence yields. Such targeted design efforts would substantially benefit from a deeper understanding of those structural parameters that control the photophysical properties of the protein-bound chromophore. Here we have employed resonance Raman (RR) spectroscopy and molecular dynamics simulations for elucidating the chromophore structural changes in a fluorescence-optimized mutant (iRFP) derived from the PAS-GAF domain of the bacteriophytochrome RpBphP2 from Rhodopseudomas palustris . Both methods consistently reveal the structural consequences of the amino acid substitutions in the vicinity of the biliverdin chromophore that may account for lowering the propability of nonradiative excited state decays. First, compared to the wild-type protein, the tilt angle of the terminal ring D with respect to ring C is increased in iRFP, accompanied by the loss of hydrogen bond interactions of the ring D carbonyl function and the reduction of the number of water molecules in that part of the chromophore pocket. Second, the overall flexibility of the chromophore is significantly reduced, particularly in the region of rings D and A, thereby reducing the conformational heterogeneity of the methine bridge between rings A and B and the ring A carbonyl group, as concluded from the RR spectra of the wild-type proteins.
    Keywords: Phytochrome -- Chemistry
    ISSN: 00062960
    E-ISSN: 1520-4995
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  • 4
    Language: English
    In: PLoS ONE, 2011, Vol.6(3), p.e17744
    Description: The naked mole-rat ( Heterocephalus glaber ) is one of the two known mammalian species that live in a eusocial population structure. Here we investigate the exceptionally long gestation period of 70 days observed in the mole-rat queen. The course of seven successful pregnancies in two individuals was recorded in a colony of captive naked mole-rats using ultrasound biomicroscopy (UBM) and 3D-ultrasonography. We establish a catalogue of basic reference ultrasound data for this species by describing the ultrasonographic appearance of reproductive organs, calculating growth curves to predict gestational age and defining ultrasonographic milestones to characterize pregnancy stages. Mean litter size was 10.9±2.7, of which 7.2±1.5 survived the weaning period. Mean interbirth interval was 128.8±63.0 days. The reproductive success in our colony did not differ from previously published data. In the queen the active corpora lutea had an anechoic, fluid filled centre. Using UBM, pregnancy could be detected 53 days before parturition. The period of embryonic development is assumed to last until 30 days before parturition. Embryonic resorptions were detected frequently in the queen, indicating that this might be an ordinary event in this species. We discuss the extraordinary long gestation period of this small rodent and postulate that the long gestation is beneficial to both the eusocial structure and longevity. An increased litter size, twice as large as for other rodents of similar size, seemingly compensates for the doubling of pregnancy length. We demonstrate that the lifetime reproductive effort of a naked mole-rat queen is equivalent to the mass of offspring that would be produced if all of the females of a colony would be reproducing.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Biology ; Veterinary Science ; Physiology ; Developmental Biology ; Evolutionary Biology
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 5
    Language: English
    In: Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 2012, Vol.19(2), pp.372-378
    Description: Byline: Thomas Hildebrandt (1), Denis Pick (1), Jurgen W. Einax (1) Keywords: Hotspot; Soil sampling; Sampling strategy; Simulation; Uncertainty Abstract: Introduction The pollution of soil and environment as a result of human activity is a major problem. Nowadays, the determination of local contaminations is of interest for environmental remediation. These hotspots can have various toxic effects on plants, animals, humans, and the whole ecological system. However, economical and juridical consequences are also possible, e.g., high costs for remediation measures. Materials and methods In this study three sampling strategies (simple random sampling, stratified sampling, and systematic sampling) were applied on randomly distributed hotspot contaminations to prove their efficiency in term of finding hotspots. The results were used for the validation of a computerized simulation. Results and conclusion This application can simulate the contamination on a field, the sampling pattern, and a virtual sampling. A constant hit rate showed that none of the sampling patterns could reach better results than others. Furthermore, the uncertainty associated with the results is described by confidence intervals. It is to be considered that the uncertainty during sampling is enormous and will decrease slightly, even the number of samples applied was increased to an unreasonable amount. It is hardly possible to identify the exact number of randomly distributed hotspot contaminations by statistical sampling. But a range of possible results could be calculated. Depending on various parameters such as shape and size of the area, number of hotspots, and sample quantity, optimal sampling strategies could be derived. Furthermore, an estimation of bias arising from sampling methodology is possible. The developed computerized simulation is an innovative tool for optimizing sampling strategies in terrestrial compartments for hotspot distributions. Author Affiliation: (1) Department of Environmental Analysis, Institute of Inorganic and Analytical Chemistry, Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, Lessingstrasse 8, 07745, Jena, Germany Article History: Registration Date: 04/07/2011 Received Date: 07/04/2011 Accepted Date: 04/07/2011 Online Date: 21/07/2011 Article note: Responsible editor: Zhihong Xu
    Keywords: Hotspot ; Soil sampling ; Sampling strategy ; Simulation ; Uncertainty
    ISSN: 0944-1344
    E-ISSN: 1614-7499
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  • 6
    Article
    Article
    Language: English
    In: Facial Plastic Surgery, 04/05/2013, Vol.29(02), pp.083-084
    ISSN: 0736-6825
    E-ISSN: 1098-8793
    Source: Thieme Publishing Group (via CrossRef)
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  • 7
    In: PLoS ONE, 2017, Vol.12(5)
    Description: In asses, semen collection, cryopreservation, and artificial insemination (AI) with frozen-thawed semen have been scarcely described and success rate, particularly following AI, is reportedly low. In the absence of reliable protocols, assisted reproductive technologies cannot support the conservation efforts aimed at endangered wild ass species and domestic donkey breeds. Two experiments were conducted in this study. In experiment 1 we evaluated freezing Abyssinian donkey ( N = 5, 4 ejaculates each) spermatozoa using three freezing extenders (Berliner Cryomedium + glycerol, BC+G; BotuCrio, BOTU; INRAFreeze, INRA) and two cryopreservation techniques (liquid nitrogen vapour, LNV; directional freezing, DF). Post-thaw evaluation indicated that BOTU and INRA were similar and both superior to BC+G ( P ≤ 0.004 for all motility tests), and that DF was superior to LNV (P 〈 0.002 for all evaluation parameters). In experiment 2, relying on these results, we used Abyssinian donkey sperm frozen in BOTU and INRA by DF for AI ( N = 20). Prior to AI, thawed samples were diluted in corresponding centrifugation media or autologous seminal fluids at 1:1 ratio. No difference was found between BOTU and INRA or between the addition of seminal fluids or media, all resulting in ~50% pregnancy, and no differences were noted between males ( N = 4). The size of pre-ovulatory follicle was a significant ( P = 0.001) predictor for AI success with 9/10 pregnancies occurring when follicular size ranged between 33.1–37.4 mm, no pregnancy when it was smaller, and only one when larger. A number of ass species face the risk of extinction. Knowledge gained in this study on the Abyssinian donkey can be customised and transferred to its closely related endangered species and breeds.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Research And Analysis Methods ; Physical Sciences
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 8
    Language: English
    In: PLoS ONE, 2012, Vol.7(4), p.e35433
    Description: The Tasmanian tiger or thylacine was the largest carnivorous marsupial when Europeans first reached Australia. Sadly, the last known thylacine died in captivity in 1936. A recent analysis of the genome of the closely related and extant Tasmanian devil demonstrated limited genetic diversity between individuals. While a similar lack of diversity has been reported for the thylacine, this analysis was based on just two individuals. Here we report the sequencing of an additional 12 museum-archived specimens collected between 102 and 159 years ago. We examined a portion of the mitochondrial DNA hyper-variable control region and determined that all sequences were on average 99.5% identical at the nucleotide level. As a measure of accuracy we also sequenced mitochondrial DNA from a mother and two offspring. As expected, these samples were found to be 100% identical, validating our methods. We also used 454 sequencing to reconstruct 2.1 kilobases of the mitochondrial genome, which shared 99.91% identity with the two complete thylacine mitochondrial genomes published previously. Our thylacine genomic data also contained three highly divergent putative nuclear mitochondrial sequences, which grouped phylogenetically with the published thylacine mitochondrial homologs but contained 100-fold more polymorphisms than the conserved fragments. Together, our data suggest that the thylacine population in Tasmania had limited genetic diversity prior to its extinction, possibly as a result of their geographic isolation from mainland Australia approximately 10,000 years ago.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Agriculture ; Biology ; Genetics And Genomics ; Computational Biology ; Ecology
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 9
    Language: English
    In: Journal of Logic and Algebraic Programming, July 2013, Vol.82(5-7), pp.164-185
    Description: We conservatively extend the declarative Dynamic Condition Response (DCR) Graph process model, introduced in the PhD thesis of the second author, to allow for discrete time deadlines. We prove that safety and liveness properties can be verified by mapping finite timed DCR Graphs to finite state transition systems. We exemplify how deadlines can introduce time-locks and deadlocks and violate liveness. We then prove that the general technique for safe distribution of DCR Graphs provided in previous work can be extended to timed DCR Graphs. We exemplify the use of timed DCR Graphs and the distribution technique in praxis on a timed extension of a cross-organizational case management process arising from a previous case study. The example shows how a timed DCR Graph can be used to describe the global contract for a timed workflow process involving several organizations, which can then be distributed as a network of communicating timed DCR Graphs describing the local contract for each organization.
    Keywords: Time ; Contracts ; Declarative Process Models ; Cross-Organizational Workflow ; Safety ; Liveness ; Computer Science
    ISSN: 1567-8326
    E-ISSN: 1873-5940
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  • 10
    Language: English
    In: PLoS ONE, 01 January 2014, Vol.9(6), p.e100415
    Description: Currently, radiography is the only imaging technique used to diagnose bone pathology in wild animals situated under "field conditions". Nevertheless, while chronic foot disease in captive mega-herbivores is widely reported, foot radiographic imaging is confronted with scarcity of studies. Numerous hindrances lead to such limited numbers and it became very clear that the traditional perspective on bone imaging in domestic animals based on extensive studies and elaborated statistical evaluations cannot be extrapolated to their non-domestic relatives. For these reasons, the authors initiated a multi-modality imaging study and established a pioneering approach of synchronized computed tomography (CT) and digital radiography (DR), based on X-ray projections derived from three-dimensional CT reconstructed images. Whereas this approach can be applied in any clinical field, as a case of outstanding importance and great concern for zoological institutions, we selected foot bone pathologies in captive rhinoceroses to demonstrate the manifold applications of the method. Several advances were achieved, endowing the wildlife clinician with all-important tools: prototype DR exposure protocols and a modus operandi for foot positioning, advancing both traditional projections and, for the first-time, species-related radiographic views; assessment of radiographic diagnostic value for the whole foot and, in premiere, for each autopodial bone; together with additional insights into radiographic appearance of bone anatomy and pathology with a unique, simultaneous CT-DR correlation. Based on its main advantages in availing a wide range of keystone data in wildlife imaging from a limited number of examined subjects and combining advantages of CT as the golden standard method for bone diseases' diagnostic with DR's clinical feasibility under field conditions, synchronized CT-DR presents a new perspective on wildlife's health management. With this we hope to provide veterinary clinicians with concrete imaging techniques and substantial diagnostic tools, which facilitate straightforward attainment and interpretation of field radiography images taken worldwide.
    Keywords: Sciences (General)
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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