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Starts and Stops of Rhythmic and Discrete Movements: Modulation in the Excitability of the Corticomotor Tract During Transition to a Different Type of Movement

Lim et al. | Aug 27, 2018

Starts and Stops of Rhythmic and Discrete Movements: Modulation in the Excitability of the Corticomotor Tract During Transition to a Different Type of Movement

Control of voluntary and involuntary movements is one of the most important aspects of human neurological function, but the mechanisms of motor control are not completely understood. In this study, the authors use transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to stimulate a portion of the motor cortex while subjects performed either discrete (e.g. throwing) or rhythmic (e.g. walking) movements. By recording electrical activity in the muscles during this process, the authors showed that motor evoked potentials (MEPs) measured in the muscles during TMS stimulation are larger in amplitude for discrete movements than for rhythmic movements. Interestingly, they also found that MEPs during transitions between rhythmic and discrete movements were nearly identical and larger in amplitude than those recorded during either rhythmic or discrete movements. This research provides important insights into the mechanisms of neurological control of movement and will serve as the foundation for future studies to learn more about temporal variability in neural activity during different movement types.

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Contrasting role of ASCC3 and ALKBH3 in determining genomic alterations in Glioblastoma Multiforme

Sriram et al. | Sep 27, 2022

Contrasting role of <i>ASCC3</i> and <i>ALKBH3</i> in determining genomic alterations in Glioblastoma Multiforme

Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is the most malignant brain tumor with the highest fraction of genome alterations (FGA), manifesting poor disease-free status (DFS) and overall survival (OS). We explored The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and cBioportal public dataset- Firehose legacy GBM to study DNA repair genes Activating Signal Cointegrator 1 Complex Subunit 3 (ASCC3) and Alpha-Ketoglutarate-Dependent Dioxygenase AlkB Homolog 3 (ALKBH3). To test our hypothesis that these genes have correlations with FGA and can better determine prognosis and survival, we sorted the dataset to arrive at 254 patients. Analyzing using RStudio, both ASCC3 and ALKBH3 demonstrated hypomethylation in 82.3% and 61.8% of patients, respectively. Interestingly, low mRNA expression was observed in both these genes. We further conducted correlation tests between both methylation and mRNA expression of these genes with FGA. ASCC3 was found to be negatively correlated, while ALKBH3 was found to be positively correlated, potentially indicating contrasting dysregulation of these two genes. Prognostic analysis showed the following: ASCC3 hypomethylation is significant with DFS and high ASCC3 mRNA expression to be significant with OS, demonstrating ASCC3’s potential as disease prediction marker.

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An Analysis of the Density and Patterns of the Solutions of Diophantine Equations of the Third Power

Grewal et al. | Oct 05, 2020

An Analysis of the Density and Patterns of the Solutions of Diophantine Equations of the Third Power

In this study, the authors sought to find out how many mathematical solutions there were to the Indian mathematician Ramanujan's formula, which is a3 + b3 + c3 = d3, and also quantify the densities its solutions. They wrote their own computer program to do so and kept values of a, b, and c less than 10,000. While conducting the analysis, they were also looking for perfect power taxicab numbers and their frequency. They were able to find solutions and densities for the equation. Additionally, while they found that most perfect cube taxicab numbers had a frequency of 2 or 3, they also found on number with a frequency of 42!

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Effects of Wi-Fi EMF on Drosophila melanogaster

Anand et al. | Jan 29, 2020

Effects of Wi-Fi EMF on <em>Drosophila melanogaster</em>

While increased access to Wi-Fi has been a great advancement, we have a limited understanding if there are any health effects on animals. In this study, Anand and Anand exposed fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) to different concentrations of Wi-Fi electromagnetic fields, and observed effects on their reproduction and survivability.

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The Parent-Child Relationship During the College Planning Process

Vanden et al. | Sep 19, 2019

The Parent-Child Relationship During the College Planning Process

To explore the parent-child relationship during college planning, authors surveyed high school juniors from two private schools (boarding school vs. non-boarding parochial school). After coding, survey answers indicate students at boarding schools were found to have greater fear of parental control and disappointment, while students at non-boarding parochial schoolexpressed a greater need for parental assistance.

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Effects of caffeine on muscle signals measured with sEMG signals

Park et al. | Jun 20, 2022

Effects of caffeine on muscle signals measured with sEMG signals

Here, the authors used surface electromyography to measure the effects of caffeine intake on the resting activity of muscles. They found a significant increase in the measured amplitude suggesting that caffeine intake increased the number of activated muscle fibers during rest. While previous research has focused on caffeine's effect on the contraction signals of muscles, this research suggests that its effects extend to even when a muscle is at rest.

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Homology modeling of clinically-relevant rilpivirine-resistant HIV-RT variants identifies novel rilpivirine analogs with retained binding affinity against NNRTI-resistant HIV mutations

Luk et al. | Jan 24, 2022

Homology modeling of clinically-relevant rilpivirine-resistant HIV-RT variants identifies novel rilpivirine analogs with retained binding affinity against NNRTI-resistant HIV mutations

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which affects tens of millions of individuals worldwide, can lead to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). While there is currently no cure for HIV, the development of small molecule antiretroviral agents has greatly improved the prognosis of infected individuals, especially in developed countries. Here, the authors employ homology modeling and molecular docking towards the identification of novel rilpivirine analogs that retain high binding affinity to clinically relevant rilpivirine-resistant mutations of the HIV reverse transcriptase enzyme.

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A Scientific Investigation of Alternative Growing Methods to Cultivate Lactuca sativa

Fishback et al. | Apr 23, 2020

A Scientific Investigation of Alternative Growing Methods to Cultivate Lactuca sativa

In this article, the authors compare different resource-efficient farming methods for the vegetable Lactuca sativa. They compared hydroponics (solid growth medium with added nutrients) to aquaponics (water with fish waste to provide nutrients) and determined efficacy by measuring plant height over time. While both systems supported plant growth, the authors concluded that aquaponics was the superior method for supporting Lactuca sativa growth. These findings are of great relevance as we continue to find the most sustainable and efficient means for farming.

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DyGS: A Dynamic Gene Searching Algorithm for Cancer Detection

Wang et al. | Jun 05, 2018

DyGS: A Dynamic Gene Searching Algorithm for Cancer Detection

Wang and Gong developed a novel dynamic gene-searching algorithm called Dynamic Gene Search (DyGS) to create a gene panel for each of the 12 cancers with the highest annual incidence and death rate. The 12 gene panels the DyGS algorithm selected used only 3.5% of the original gene mutation pool, while covering every patient sample. About 40% of each gene panel is druggable, which indicates that the DyGS-generated gene panels can be used for early cancer detection as well as therapeutic targets in treatment methods.

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Reddit v. Wall Street: Why Redditors beat Wall Street at its own game

Bhakar et al. | Sep 13, 2022

Reddit v. Wall Street: Why Redditors beat Wall Street at its own game

Here the authors investigated the motivation of a short squeeze of GameStop stock where users of the internet forum Reddit drove a sudden increase in GameStop stock price during the start of 2021. They relied on both qualitative and quantitative analyses where they tracked activity on the r/WallStreetBets subreddit in relation to mentions of GameStop. With these methods they found that while initially the short squeeze was driven by financial motivations, later on emotional motivations became more important. They suggest that social phenomena can be dynamic and evolve necessitating mixed method approaches to study them.

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