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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 12 February 2019, Vol.116(7), pp.2494-2499
    Description: Biogeochemical reactions occur unevenly in space and time, but this heterogeneity is often simplified as a linear average due to sparse data, especially in subsurface environments where access is limited. For example, little is known about the spatial variability of groundwater denitrification, an important process in removing nitrate originating from agriculture and land use conversion. Information about the rate, arrangement, and extent of denitrification is needed to determine sustainable limits of human activity and to predict recovery time frames. Here, we developed and validated a method for inferring the spatial organization of sequential biogeochemical reactions in an aquifer in France. We applied it to five other aquifers in different geological settings located in the United States and compared results among 44 locations across the six aquifers to assess the generality of reactivity trends. Of the sampling locations, 79% showed pronounced increases of reactivity with depth. This suggests that previous estimates of denitrification have underestimated the capacity of deep aquifers to remove nitrate, while overestimating nitrate removal in shallow flow paths. Oxygen and nitrate reduction likely increases with depth because there is relatively little organic carbon in agricultural soils and because excess nitrate input has depleted solid phase electron donors near the surface. Our findings explain the long-standing conundrum of why apparent reaction rates of oxygen in aquifers are typically smaller than those of nitrate, which is energetically less favorable. This stratified reactivity framework is promising for mapping vertical reactivity trends in aquifers, generating new understanding of subsurface ecosystems and their capacity to remove contaminants.
    Keywords: Denitrification ; Groundwater ; Reaction Times ; Reactivity Pattern ; Transit Times
    ISSN: 00278424
    E-ISSN: 1091-6490
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: PLoS ONE, 2008, Vol.3(8), p.e2898
    Description: Radiotherapy (RT) is the primary treatment modality for inoperable, locally advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), but even with highly conformal treatment planning, radiation pneumonitis (RP) remains the most serious, dose-limiting complication. Previous clinical reports proposed that cytokine plasma levels measured during RT allow to estimate the individual risk of patients to develop RP. The identification of such cytokine risk profiles would facilitate tailoring radiotherapy to maximize treatment efficacy and to minimize radiation toxicity. However, cytokines are produced not only in normal lung tissue after irradiation, but are also over-expressed in tumour cells of NSCLC specimens. This tumour-derived cytokine production may influence circulating plasma levels in NSCLC patients. The aim of the present study was to investigate the prognostic value of TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6 and TGF-β1 plasma levels to predict radiation pneumonitis and to evaluate the impact of tumour-derived cytokine production on circulating plasma levels in patients irradiated for NSCLC. ; In 52 NSCLC patients (stage I–III) cytokine plasma levels were investigated by ELISA before and weekly during RT, during follow-up (1/3/6/9 months after RT), and at the onset of RP. Tumour biopsies were immunohistochemically stained for IL-6 and TGF-β1, and immunoreactivity was quantified (grade 1–4). RP was evaluated according to LENT-SOMA scale. Tumour response was assessed according to RECIST criteria by chest-CT during follow-up. In our clinical study 21 out of 52 patients developed RP (grade I/II/III/IV: 11/3/6/1 patients). Unexpectedly, cytokine plasma levels measured before and during RT did not correlate with RP incidence. In most patients IL-6 and TGF-β1 plasma levels were already elevated before RT and correlated significantly with the IL-6 and TGF-β1 production in corresponding tumour biopsies. Moreover, IL-6 and TGF-β1 plasma levels measured during follow-up were significantly associated with the individual tumour responses of these patients. ; The results of this study did not confirm that cytokine plasma levels, neither their absolute nor any relative values, may identify patients at risk for RP. In contrast, the clear correlations of IL-6 and TGF-β1 plasma levels with the cytokine production in corresponding tumour biopsies and with the individual tumour responses suggest that the tumour is the major source of circulating cytokines in patients receiving RT for advanced NSCLC.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Oncology ; Oncology -- Lung Cancer ; Respiratory Medicine -- Lung Cancer
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Nature Communications, 01 July 2018, Vol.9(1), pp.1-7
    Description: The synthesis of polyethylene furanoate, a promising renewable resource-based bioplastic, still has challenges. Here the authors show that bottle-grade polyethylene furanoate can be obtained within minutes from ring-opening polymerisation of...
    Keywords: Biology
    ISSN: Nature Communications
    E-ISSN: 2041-1723
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