Trillions of microbes cover the surfaces of our bodies and inhabit our gastrointestinal tract. In the past decade, research efforts examining the role of the microbiome in mental health have moved to the forefront of neuroscience and psychiatry. Based on a foundation of animal studies demonstrating the vital role for microbiota-brain communication in brain development, behavior, and brain function over the life span, clinical studies have started to consider the microbiome in psychiatric disorders.
Typical thermographic images of adult Malayan sun bears taken shortly after rest and in a postabsorptive state at (A) TA = 23 °C, (B) TA = 28 °C, and (C) TA = 29 °C.
Thermoregulation in Malayan sun bears is not fully understood. Therefore, in this study the effect of meteorological variables on both behavioural and autonomic thermoregulatory mechanisms in sun bears was examined in order to identify temperature thresholds for the activation of various thermoregulatory mechanisms. Infrared thermography was used to non‒invasively determine body surface temperature (TS) distribution in relation to ambient temperature (TA) and to determine the thermoneutral zone (TNZ) of sun bears.
Beyond their traditional use as green solvents, new applications have become available for ionic liquids (ILs) in drug delivery. Their flexible tunability enables task-specific optimization of ILs at molecular level. Thus, ILs have been exploited to improve the solubility and permeability of drugs and relieve the polymorphic problems associated with crystalline active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). Controlled preparation of drug nanocarriers are also achieved by using ILs either as media or as functional agents.
Elsevier, Current Opinion in Insect Science, Volume 38, April 2020
Urban expansion is considered to be one of the main threats to global biodiversity yet some pollinator groups, particularly bees, can do well in urban areas. Recent studies indicate that both local and landscape-level drivers can influence urban pollinator communities, with local floral resources and the amount of impervious cover in the landscape affecting pollinator abundance, richness and community composition. Urban intensification, chemicals, climate change and increased honey bee colony densities all negatively affect urban pollinators.
Elsevier, Current Opinion in Insect Science, Volume 38, April 2020
Insect pollinators are becoming visible to societies. Many peer-reviewed papers evidence biophysical and ecological aspects of managed and non-managed insect pollinators. Evidence on stressors of declines yield peer-reviewed calls for action. Yet, insect pollinator declines are inherently a human issue, driven by a history of land-use trends, changes in technologies, and socio-cultural perceptions that unwittingly cause and perpetuate declines. Conservation requires integrating social and ecological understandings to reconfigure human behaviors across societies’ sectors.
Background: The nuclear factor erythroid2-related factor2 (Nrf2), a chief transcriptional regulator of antioxidant response element (ARE), is considered a promising target for the prevention of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Vitamin D has been recognized to have a crucial role in improving AD cognitive functions. The present study was conducted to evaluate the effects of active vitamin D analogue, Maxacalcitol, on Keap1-Nrf2 signaling pathway in experimental Alzheimer's disease in rats.
Glucose-dependent Insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP) is a peptide hormone of the incretin family. It has growth factor properties and can re-activate energy utilization. In progressive neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, energy utilization is much reduced, and GIP has the potential to reverse this. Furthermore, GIP can reduce the inflammation response in the brain and reduce levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Tests in animal models of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease show good neuroprotective effects.
Neuropathic pain (NeuP) arises due to injury of the somatosensory nervous system and is both common and disabling, rendering an urgent need for non-addictive, effective new therapies. Given the high evolutionary conservation of pain, investigative approaches from Drosophila mutagenesis to human Mendelian genetics have aided our understanding of the maladaptive plasticity underlying NeuP. Successes include the identification of ion channel variants causing hyper-excitability and the importance of neuro-immune signaling.
Chagas disease, Human African Trypanosomiasis, and schistosomiasis are neglected parasitic diseases for which new treatments are urgently needed. To identify new chemical leads, we screened the 400 compounds of the Open Access Malaria Box against the cysteine proteases, cruzain (Trypanosoma cruzi), rhodesain (Trypanosoma brucei) and SmCB1 (Schistosoma mansoni), which are therapeutic targets for these diseases. Whereas just three hits were observed for SmCB1, 70 compounds inhibited cruzain or rhodesain by at least 50% at 5 μM.
Elsevier, Soil Biology and Biochemistry, Volume 136, September 2019
Soils host the vast majority of life on Earth including microorganisms and animals, and supporting all terrestrial vegetation. While soil organisms are pivotal for ecosystem functioning, the assemblages of different biota from a taxonomic and functional perspective, as well as how these different organisms interact, remains poorly known. We provide a brief overview of the taxonomic and functional diversity of all major groups of soil biota across different scales and organism sizes, ranging from viruses to prokaryotes and eukaryotes.