A major concern for a great number of people is finding the most effective means to teach others who then get good grades. Many professors are trying to encourage their students to interact online in order to share information and do better in the class. Now researchers at the University of California, San Diego have analyzed these interactions to learn what works and who works together.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, those students who were most active online were most likely to receive high grades. These high achievers also were the most likely to form strong connections and use more complex methods to share information. The researchers also discovered that these same students formed cliques and had the effect of shutting out poorer performing students. Those shut-out students then appeared to be more likely to drop out of the class.
As with many studies, it is important to remember that correlation does not imply causation, though the researchers are going to try to use this to identify students at risk of dropping out before they actually do.
Source: University of California, San Diego
HYBRIGENICS : launches a new service to screen interactions between small molecules and protein targets01/29/2013| 04:51am US/Eastern
Hybrigenics launches a new service to screen interactions between small molecules and protein targets
Paris, 24 January 2013 – Hybrigenics (ALHYG), a bio-pharmaceutical company listed on Alternext (NYSE-Euronext) in Paris today announces that Hybrigenics Services, its subsidiary specialized in protein interactions, has launched a new service to identify interactions between small molecules and protein targets.
Using a chemical linkage adaptation of its optimized yeast two-hybrid technology, renamed yeast chemical-hybrid (YChemH), Hybrigenics Services is now able to screen a small molecule as a bait against its cDNA or genomic libraries expressing millions of prey protein fragments to identify target proteins with which this tested molecule interacts.
These exhaustive screens can be of interest from both safety and efficacy perspectives. This technology may uncover a full range of related targets accounting for the whole spectrum of therapeutic activities of a drug (so-called on-targets) and/or explain unexpected side effects exerted through unsuspected targets (so-called off-targets). Some drugs are active in whole cellular or animal models, but their mechanism of action remains unknown: the YChemH technology may find a relevant target for these orphan drugs, in a process called drug de- orphanisation. Finally, it may be relevant for widely used chemicals in every day products to ascertain that they do not interact with any protein.
This new technology has been developed in collaboration with Charnwood Molecular, an English medicinal chemistry firm, for the linkage of the small molecule to the rest of the yeast molecular biology machinery mastered by Hybrigenics Services. It is the outcome of a joint development project amounting to a total investment of close to one million euro over two years which has been supported up to 40% of the costs by a European Union subsidy under the Eurostars® programme.
This new service offering covers a whole new area of protein interaction screening: with small molecules. It has been conceived and developed to strategically answer recurrent unmet needs of the pharmaceutical industry and to generate awareness of the chemical industry. We warmly thank Charnwood Molecular for their up-lifting collaborative spirit and their outstanding chemical contribution, first to the project and now, to the launch of this new YChemH service said Remi Delansorne, Hybrigenics Services President.
Hybrigenics (www.hybrigenics.com) is a bio-pharmaceutical company listed (ALHYG) on Alternext (NYSE- Euronext) in Paris, focusing its internal RD programs on innovative targets and therapies for the treatment of proliferative cancerous or non-cancerous diseases.
Hybrigenics current development program is based on inecalcitol, a vitamin D receptor agonist active by oral administration. Oral inecalcitol has shown excellent tolerance and strong presumption of efficacy for the first-line treatment of metastastic castrate-resistant prostate cancer in combination with Taxotere®,
which is the current gold-standard chemotherapeutic treatment for this indication. Oral inecalcitol has recently been studied in a clinical trial for the treatment of moderate-to-severe psoriasis, and is currently being tested in chronic lymphocytic leukemia patients.
Hybrigenics has a research collaboration with Servier on deubiquitinating enzymes and their inhibitors in oncology, neurology, psychiatry, rheumatology, ophthalmology, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Hybrigenics continues to build on its pioneer research position in the field of ubiquitin-specific proteases by exploring their role in other areas of particular relevance, such as inflammation and virology.
Hybrigenics Services (www.hybrigenics-services.com), a fully-owned subsidiary, is the market leader in Yeast Two-Hybrid (Y2H) and related services to identify, validate and inhibit protein interactions for researchers in all areas of life sciences, using its ISO 9001-certified high-throughput Y2H screening platform, its sophisticated bioinformatics tools and extensive database, along with its chemical library and chemical screening platform.
HYBRIGENICS is listed on the Alternext by NYSE Euronext Paris
Hybrigenics Rémi Delansorne CEO
Tel.: +33 (0)1 58 10 38 00 firstname.lastname@example.org
Axelle Vuillermet / Pierre Laurent Tel.: +33 (0)1 44 71 94 94 email@example.com
Jan. 23, 2013 Researchers at Syracuse Universitys Department of Biomedical and Chemical Engineering at LC Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science are studying the toxicity of commonly used nanoparticles, particles up to one million times smaller than a millimeter that could potentially penetrate and damage cell membranes.
In a bid to reach scale and with it reap the benefits that network effects bring, Tradeshift, the free e-invoicing and business interactions platform, has partnered with Intuit, along with taking a strategic investment from the legacy accounting software maker. The amount isnt being disclosed said only to be multi-million and at an increased valuation than Tradeshifts most recent funding round.
The deal will also see Tradeshifts platform integrated with Intuits QuickBooks, giving it access to a 5 million-strong customer base and potentially expanding Tradeshifts current numbers well beyond the 150,000 SMBs it stands at today creating what it says will be one of the largest networks of connected suppliers.
The use of the word network is significant, an e-invoicing and broader business B2B trading platform is only as useful as its ubiquity and/or standards support, thus removing the friction of doing business electronically. To that end, if Intuits customers can be brought on board, its a big win for the SMBs that already use Tradeshift as well as the company itself.
Writing on the company blog, CEO and co-founder, Christian Lanng, giddily sums it up best:
Why does this matter? Scale. The value of any communications network increases directly in proportion to number of users — and when it reaches a point where it includes most of the businesses you want to interact with, something amazing happens. Skype, Facebook, Linkedin; all these platforms are successful because they have critical mass.
Specifically, todays partnership will see Intuit’s accounting and payments products integrated with Tradeshifts electronic trading network so that it will be easier for SMBs using QuickBooks to comply with their enterprise customers’ e-invoicing mandates. Likewise, says Tradeshift, large enterprises should find that more of their suppliers will be willing to use e-invoicing etc. via the platform due to the reduced cost and friction enabled by the planned integrations. You get the idea.
QuickBooks customers in the UK are said to be the first to benefit via a free app that connects their Tradeshift and QuickBooks accounts. A platform play in the proper sense, Tradeshift is also talking up what todays announcement does for app developers wholl also benefit from increased scale.
Note: An earlier draft press release that has since been retracted pegged Intuits investment at $10 million. Tradeshift are keen to stress that the figure is an old number and factually not accurate.
BANGALORE: Andrew J Majda is the Morse Professor of Arts and Sciences at the Courant Institute of New York University and has won almost all the major prizes in the US in applied maths. He is also the founder of the Center for Atmosphere Ocean Science with a multi-disciplinary faculty to promote cross-disciplinary research with modern applied mathematics in climate modeling and prediction and the recipient of the prestigious Medal of the College de France twice. Prof Majda was at the International Centre for Theoretical Sciences in the city recently for a lecture series.
What do you most like about mathematics?
Minneapolis-based custom e-learning and blended learning solutions provider, Allen Interactions, will showcase the features of their new cloud-based authoring tool, ZebraZapps Professional, and will facilitate a new workshop, Leaving ADDIE for SAM, at ASTD TechKnowledge, January 28-February 1, in San Jose, CA.
Minneapolis, MN (PRWEB) January 28, 2013
This premier event for workplace learning and development professionals welcomes over 1,200 attendees who focus their daily attention on the design and delivery, management, and strategy of technology and learning. Attendees will come together alongside 70 exhibitors in the learning technology space to learn, network, and move people forward through the application of learning and technology.
Allen Interactions kicks off the conference on Monday, January 28, facilitating two of ASTD’s preconference certificate programs. The two-day ASTD e-Learning Instructional Design Certificate Program helps participants develop individualized, meaningful and memorable e-learning experiences that motivate learners to change their behavior. The other preconference certificate program is ASTD’s Advanced e-Learning Instructional Design Certificate which helps participants design effective learning experiences by blending in proven behavior-change principles.
New Workshop – Leaving ADDIE for SAM:
Michael Allen and Edmond Manning will facilitate a preconference workshop on Leaving ADDIE for SAM. The goal of this workshop is to help attendees learn the basics of the Successive Approximation Model (SAM) and measure their organizations readiness to follow a process other than the traditional ADDIE. Drawing from ASTDs new book, Leaving ADDIE for SAM, participants are introduced to SAM1 and SAM2, which are not Dr. Seuss characters, but rather alternate development processes.
ZebraZapps Professional — Building Authentic Learning Experiences has never been Easier or more Fun
Christopher Allen, product marketing manager, will demonstrate how ZebraZapps Professional, Allen Interactions’ revolutionary cloud-based authoring tool, brings instructional design dreams to life with visual authoring, in-context editing, and advanced interactive objects. Attendees will witness powerful examples of authentic learning events and the extraordinary new ZebraZapps Professional features which make creating them a blast. Life is good when the compromises of rapid are left behind for true speed and compelling stories.
About Allen Interactions
Allen Interactions creates powerful custom learning experiences that help achieve organizational business goals by improving performance one interaction at a time. With deep experience and expertise in instructional design, technology, creativity, process, and project management, Allen Interactions consistently achieves positive business impact. In addition to its service offerings Allen Interactions has an awesome cloud-based authoring tool, ZebraZapps, which allows developers and non-programmers to create rich interactive media applications easily and quickly, as well as share, publish, and sell objects or entire applications. For more information visit: alleninteractions.com or zebrazapps.com
ASTD (American Society for Training amp; Development) is the world’s largest association dedicated to workplace learning and performance professionals. ASTD’s members come from more than 100 countries and connect locally in more than 130 US chapters and with more than 30 international partners. Members work in thousands of organizations of all sizes, in government, as independent consultants, and suppliers.
In recent years, ASTD has widened the profession’s focus to link learning and performance to individual and organizational results, and is a sought-after voice on critical public policy issues.
For the original version on PRWeb visit: http://www.prweb.com/releases/prweb2013/1/prweb10367003.htm
Alan McStravick for redOrbit.com Your Universe Online
Generation X refers to a group of individuals who are currently celebrating life in their mid 30s to late 40s. Born between 1965 and 1979, the significance for this generation is that they were the first to make the leap from a pre-technological existence to the nearly ubiquitous nature of technology today.
A new study, out of the University of Michigan (UMich), claims that Gen Xers have been able to make the transition fairly seamlessly. In their study, the UMich team stated that members of this generation are likely to connect with friends, family and co-workers online as much as they are to in person.
The study showed that in a typical month, these adults of generation X reportedly engaged in approximately 75 face-to-face contacts or conversations, compared to 74 electronic contacts, either via email or social media.
Given the speed of emerging technologies, it is likely that electronic contacts will continue to grow in the years ahead, eventually exceeding face-to-face interactions, says Jon D. Miller, author of the latest issue of The Generation X Report, and director of the Longitudinal Study of American Youth at the UMich Institute for Social Research.
The most recent iteration of the Longitudinal Study, which has been funded annually since 1986 by the National Science Foundation (NSF), includes responses from 3,027 Gen Xers, all interviewed in 2011.
Young adults in Generation X are currently maintaining a healthy balance between personal and electronic social networking, adds Miller.
The study of Gen X social networks is, according to Miller, important because these networks, also referred to as “social capital,” play an important part in determining an individual’s overall quality of life.
The size and composition of personal networks is both a reflection of cumulative advantage over years and decades, and an indicator of the resources available to get ahead and deal with problems or challenges that may arise, says Miller.
The study also showed that education and, therefore, socio-economic standing played a role in the size of an individual’s social network. Young adults of the Gen X community who had attained Bachelors or Advanced degrees typically enjoyed a larger social network. Conversely, those who did not complete high school tended to revert to the more traditional personal networks and relied far less on electronic networking.
Another interesting find, according to the researchers, is that males in this generation reported more personal contacts than females over the course of a typical month. Males reported 86 personal contacts compared to 65 personal contacts for females. This difference, according to the study, reflects the larger number of hours men reported spending at work. The young women were slightly more likely to visit family and friends, attend meetings in the community and do volunteer work.
The study participants, reporting their face-to-face contacts, showed, on average, visits with family and friends occurred eight times; interactions with co-workers came in at 60 for the month; meetings of social or community groups occurred four times; and volunteer work came in the lowest with only about three hours a month, on average, being devoted to it.
Females, on the other hand, were a little more active than the male respondents when it came to electronic networking. Females initiated 76 contacts per month compared to 71 initiated contacts for males. The breakdown among electronic networking interactions, in a typical month, produced 39 non-work related emails, Facebook logins equaling 23 individual instances, tweeting their friends and followers four times, sending out seven digital pictures and Skyping only once.
This is the first generation of Americans to reach adulthood at the beginning of the Electronic Era, says Miller. So it’s understandable that they should show a substantial mix of traditional and electronic networking as they build and maintain the social capital that will help to carry them through their lives.
Jan. 22, 2013 Scientists have identified genetic circumstances under which common mutations on two genes interact in the presence of cocaine to produce a nearly eight-fold increased risk of death as a result of abusing the drug.
Many species with sexual and asexual variants show a pattern of geographic parthenogenesis where asexuals have broader and higher-latitude distribution than sexuals. Because sexual reproduction is often considered a costly evolutionary strategy that is advantageous in the face of selection by coevolving pests and pathogens, one possible explanation for geographic parthenogenesis is that populations at higher latitudes are exposed to fewer pests and pathogens.
We tested this hypothesis in the common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale), a species with well-established geographic parthenogenesis, by screening prevalence and effects of several specialized pests and pathogens in natural dandelion populations.
We did a population survey of 18 dandelion populations along a geographic transect that ranged from the area where sexual and asexual dandelions co-occur northward into the area where only asexuals occur. In addition we used four southern and four northern populations in a 8×8 cross-inoculation greenhouse experiment in which plants were exposed experimentally to each others natural field soil microbial communities.
The cross-inoculation experiment indicated a higher pathogenicity of soil microbial communities from the southern, mostly sexual, populations compared to soil microbial communities from the northern asexual populations. Northern dandelion populations also showed reduced infestation by a specialized seed-eating weevil.
A similar trend of reduced rust fungus infection in northern populations was observed but this trend was not statistically significant.
The prevalence of pests and pathogens decreased along the south-to-north axis of geographic parthenogenesis. This highlights the potential of biotic interactions in shaping patterns of geographic parthenogenesis.
Author: Koen JF VerhoevenArjen Biere
Credits/Source: BMC Evolutionary Biology 2013, 13:23
Published on: 2013-01-28
IntroductionMesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are immunosuppressive but we lack an understanding of how these adult stem cells are in turn affected by immune cells and the surrounding tissue environment. As MSC have stromal functions and exhibit great plasticity, the influence of an inflamed microenvironment on their responses is important to determine.
MSC downregulate microglial inflammatory responses, and here we describe the mutual effects of coculturing mouse bone marrow MSC with BV2 microglia in a lipopolysaccharide (LPS) inflammatory paradigm.
Mouse MSC were cultured from femoral and tibial bone marrow aspirates and characterised. MSC were cocultured with BV2 microglia at 4 seeding density ratios, namely 1:0.2, 1:0.1, 1:0.02 and 1:0.01 (BV2:MSC), and stimulated with 1 g/mL LPS.
In certain assays, MSC were separated from BV2 cells with a cell culture insert to determine the influence of soluble factors on downstream responses. Inflammatory mediators including nitric oxide (NO), interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF- and chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (CCL2) were measured in cocultures, and MSC and BV2 chemotactic ability determined by migration assays.
We demonstrate MSC to increase expression of NO and IL-6 and decrease TNF- in LPS-treated cocultures.
These effects are differentially mediated by soluble factors and cell-to-cell contact. In response to an LPS stimulus, MSC display distinct behaviours, including expressing IL-6 and very high levels of the chemokine CCL2.
Microglia increase their migration almost four-fold in the presence of LPS, and interestingly MSC provide an equal impetus for microglia locomotion. MSC do not migrate towards LPS but migrate towards microglia, with their chemotaxis increasing when microglia are activated.
Similarly MSC do not produce NO when exposed to LPS, but secrete large amounts when exposed to soluble factors from activated microglia. This demonstrates that certain phenotypic changes of MSC are governed by inflammatory microglia, and not the inflammatory stimulus.
Nonetheless, LPS appears to primethe NO-secretory effects of MSC, as prior treatment with LPS triggers a bigger NO response from MSC following exposure to microglial soluble factors.
These effects demonstrate the multifaceted and reciprocal interactions of MSC and microglia within an inflammatory milieu.
Author: Zulatfi RahmatShinsmon JoseRajesh RamasamySharmili Vidyadaran
Credits/Source: Stem Cell Research Therapy 2013, 4:12
Published on: 2013-01-28