Now showing items 1-20 of 12955

    • Climate refugia for Pinus spp. in topographic and bioclimatic environments of the Madrean sky islands of México and the United States

      Haire, Sandra L.; Villarreal, Miguel L.; Cortés-Montaño, Citlali; Flesch, Aaron D.; Iniguez, José M.; Romo-Leon, Jose Raul; Sanderlin, Jamie S.; School of Natural Resources and the Environment and Desert Laboratory on Tumamoc Hill, University of Arizona (Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2022-04-01)
      Climate refugia, or places where habitats are expected to remain relatively buffered from regional climate extremes, provide an important focus for science and conservation planning. Within high-priority, multi-jurisdictional landscapes like the Madrean sky islands of the United States and México, efforts to identify and manage climate refugia are hindered by the lack of high-quality and consistent transboundary datasets. To fill these data gaps, we assembled a bi-national field dataset (n = 1416) for five pine species (Pinus spp.) and used generalized boosted regression to model pine habitats in relation to topographic variability as a basis for identifying potential microrefugia at local scales in the context of current species’ distribution patterns. We developed additional models to quantify climatic refugial attributes using coarse scale bioclimatic variables and finer scale seasonal remote sensing indices. Terrain metrics including ruggedness, slope position, and aspect defined microrefugia for pines within elevation ranges preferred by each species. Response to bioclimatic variables indicated that small shifts in climate were important to some species (e.g., P. chihuahuana, P. strobiformis), but others exhibited a broader tolerance (e.g., P. arizonica). Response to seasonal climate was particularly important in modeling microrefugia for species with open canopy structure and where regular fires occur (e.g., P. engelmannii and P. chihuahuana). Hotspots of microrefugia differed among species and were either limited to northern islands or occurred across central or southern latitudes. Mapping and validation of refugia and their ecological functions are necessary steps in developing regional conservation strategies that cross jurisdictional boundaries. A salient application will be incorporation of climate refugia in management of fire to restore and maintain pine ecology. Una versión en español de este artículo está disponible como descarga.
    • Where did the Arizona-Plano Go? Protracted Thinning Via Upper- to Lower-Crustal Processes

      Jepson, G.; Carrapa, B.; George, S.W.M.; Reeher, L.J.; Kapp, P.A.; Davis, G.H.; Thomson, S.N.; Amadori, C.; Clinkscales, C.; Jones, S., I; et al. (John Wiley and Sons Inc, 2022)
      Mesozoic-Cenozoic subduction of the Farallon slab beneath North America generated a regionally extensive orogenic plateau in the southwestern US during the latest Cretaceous, similar to the modern Central Andean Plateau. In Nevada and southern Arizona, estimates from whole-rock geochemistry suggest crustal thicknesses reached ∼60–55 km by the Late Cretaceous. Modern crustal thicknesses are ∼28 km, requiring significant Cenozoic crustal thinning. Here, we compare detailed low-temperature thermochronology from the Catalina metamorphic core complex (MCC) to whole rock Sr/Y crustal thickness estimates across southern Arizona. We identify three periods of cooling. A minor cooling phase occurred prior to ∼40 Ma with limited evidence of denudation and ∼10 km of crustal thinning. Major cooling occurred during detachment faulting and MCC formation at 26–19 Ma, corresponding to ∼8 km of denudation and ∼8 km of crustal thinning. Finally, we document a cooling phase at 17–11 Ma related to Basin and Range extension that corresponds with ∼5 km of denudation and ∼9 km of crustal thinning. During the MCC and Basin and Range extension events, the amount of denudation recorded by low-temperature thermochronology can be explained by corresponding decreases in the crustal thickness. However, the relatively limited exhumation prior to detachment faulting at ∼26 Ma recorded by thermochronology is insufficient to explain the magnitude of crustal thinning (∼10 km) observed in the whole rock crustal thickness record. Therefore, we suggest that crustal thinning of the Arizona-plano was facilitated via ductile mid- to lower-crustal flow, and limited upper-crustal extension at 50–30 Ma prior to detachment faulting and Basin and Range extension. © 2022. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
    • Coupling of Tree Growth and Photosynthetic Carbon Uptake Across Six North American Forests

      Teets, A.; Moore, D.J.P.; Alexander, M.R.; Blanken, P.D.; Bohrer, G.; Burns, S.P.; Carbone, M.S.; Ducey, M.J.; Fraver, S.; Gough, C.M.; et al. (John Wiley and Sons Inc, 2022)
      Linking biometric measurements of stand-level biomass growth to tower-based measurements of carbon uptake—gross primary productivity and net ecosystem productivity—has been the focus of numerous ecosystem-level studies aimed to better understand the factors regulating carbon allocation to slow-turnover wood biomass pools. However, few of these studies have investigated the importance of previous year uptake to growth. We tested the relationship between wood biomass increment (WBI) and different temporal periods of carbon uptake from the current and previous years to investigate the potential lagged allocation of fixed carbon to growth among six mature, temperate forests. We found WBI was strongly correlated to carbon uptake across space (i.e., long-term averages at the different sites) but on annual timescales, WBI was much less related to carbon uptake, suggesting a temporal mismatch between C fixation and allocation to biomass. We detected lags in allocation of the previous year's carbon uptake to WBI at three of the six sites. Sites with higher annual WBI had overall stronger correlations to carbon uptake, with the strongest correlations to carbon uptake from the previous year. Only one site had WBI with strong positive relationships to current year uptake and not the previous year. Forests with low rates of WBI demonstrated weak correlations to carbon uptake from the previous year and stronger relationships to current year climate conditions. Our work shows an important, but not universal, role of lagged allocation of the previous year's carbon uptake to growth in temperate forests. © 2022. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
    • Energy transfer processes in hyperfluorescent organic light-emitting diodes

      Cho, E.; Hong, M.; Yang, Y.S.; Cho, Y.J.; Coropceanu, V.; Brédas, J.-L.; Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Arizona (Royal Society of Chemistry, 2022)
      Hyperfluorescent organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) are based on a combination of molecules displaying thermally activated delayed fluorescence (TADF) and of fluorescent emitters embedded into a host matrix; excitons formed on the TADF molecules are expected to transfer to the fluorescent emitters. As a result, device performance strongly depends on the efficiency of the relevant energy transfer processes. Here, we investigate the morphology, excited-state properties, and energy-transfer processes in a ternary TBRb:4CzIPN:mCBP blend by using complementary molecular dynamics simulations and density functional theory calculations. The results indicate that the rate constants for singlet exciton energy transfer from 4CzIPN (TADF) molecules to TBRb fluorescent emitters are about three orders of magnitude larger than both the intersystem crossing (ISC) and radiative decay rate constants of 4CzIPN; thus, the vast majority of the singlet 4CzIPN excitons can efficiently transfer to the emitters. In contrast, the transfer of triplet excitons from 4CzIPN to the emitters is limited due to a fast reverse ISC (RISC) transition. Also, it is found that singlet and triplet energy transfer from mCBP to 4CzIPN and TBRb is very efficient. As a result of quasi resonance between the emissive first excited state and the second triplet state of TBRb, not all triplet excitons that reach TBRb are lost since part of them can convert into singlet excitons via a RISC process. © 2022 The Royal Society of Chemistry
    • Ferrofettelite, [Ag6As2S7][Ag10FeAs2S8], a new sulfosalt from the Glasberg quarry, Odenwald, Germany

      Bindi, L.; Downs, R.T.; Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona (Cambridge University Press, 2022)
      Ferrofettelite, ideally [Ag6As2S7][Ag10FeAs2S8], is a new mineral (IMA No. 2021-094) from the Glasberg quarry, Nieder-Beerbach, Odenwald, south-western Germany. It occurs as anhedral to subhedral flakes and grains up to 80 μm, associated with proustite and xanthoconite, on arsenolite, calcite and prehnite. Ferrofettelite is opaque with a metallic luster and possesses a dark reddish-grey streak. It is brittle with an uneven fracture; the Vickers microhardness (VHN20) is 122 kg/mm2(range 111–131). The calculated density is 5.74 g/cm3(on the basis of the empirical formula). In plane-polarized reflected light, ferrofettelite is greyish white. Between crossed polars it is weakly anisotropic with red internal reflections. Electron-microprobe analyses give the chemical formula Ag16.04(Fe0.55Hg0.40Cu0.02)Σ0.97(As3.94Sb0.03)Σ3.97S15.02 on the basis of total atoms = 36. Ferrofettelite is monoclinic, space group C2, with a = 26.011(2), b = 15.048(1), c = 15.513(1) Å, β = 90.40(1)°, V = 6071.9(7) Å3, and Z = 8. The six strongest Bragg peaks in the X-ray powder diffraction pattern (d[Å], I[%], hkl) are: (3.18, 50, -801), (3.104, 100, 005), (3.004, 60, -802), (2.755, 40, -443), (2.501, 30, -444) and (1.880, 30, 1240). The crystal structure can be described as the alternation of two kinds of layers along the c-axis: layer A with general composition [Ag6As2S7]2-and layer B with a general composition of [Ag10FeAs2S8]2+. In the structure, the Ag atoms adopt various coordinations extending from quasi linear to quasi tetrahedral, the AsS3 groups form pyramids as are typically observed in sulfosalts, and mixed (Fe,Hg) links two sulfur atoms in a linear coordination. Ferrofettelite is the first reported inorganic phase showing a linear coordination for Fe2+. The high-temperature behavior of ferrofettelite was studied up to 410 K and compared to that of fettelite. © 2022 Cambridge University Press. All rights reserved.
    • Tautomers of 6-thiopurine in low-temperature Ar matrices: FTIR spectroscopy analysis and quantum mechanical calculations

      Ivanov, A.Yu.; Stepanian, S.G.; Karachevtsev, V.A.; Adamovicz, L.; Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Arizona (American Institute of Physics Inc., 2022)
      The structures and vibrational spectra of 6-thiopurine (6TP) molecules in an isolated state were studied by the spectroscopic and computational methods. FTIR spectra of 6TP molecules isolated in low-temperature Ar matrices (at 11 K) were obtained in the infrared range 3800-200 cm-1. The optimized structures of tautomers, model clusters and the population of tautomers were estimated by the DFT, MP2 and CCSD(T) methods. The vibrational spectra were calculated by the DFT/B3LYP method with different basis sets [6-311++G(df,pd), aug-cc-pVDZ, aug-cc-pVTZ] and the MP2/aug-cc-pVDZ/anharmonic method. In the spectral range of 1700-200 cm-1 of the experimental FTIR spectra, five combination modes enhanced by the Fermi resonance were observed. Fermi resonances with the participation of librational modes of domestic molecules were found in the 600-500 cm-1 region. It was revealed that the incorporation of 6TP between the closest packing planes of Ar lattice leads to a significant increase in the frequency of two out-of-plane "butterfly"modes. © 2022 Author(s).
    • Quantum mechanical studies of 2D nanobiohybrids

      Stepanian, S.G.; Adamowicz, L.; Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Arizona (American Institute of Physics Inc., 2022)
      We considered the recent application of quantum mechanical methods for studying the structure, interaction energies, as well as vibrational and electronic spectra of complexes of 2D nanomaterials (graphene, graphene oxide) with biological molecules. We analyzed how to overcome the main problems arising in computational studies of 2D nanobiohybrids, namely, the large size of systems, the nonuniformity of 2D nanomaterials, the need to use methods that can correctly take into account dispersion interactions. An analysis of the results of quantum mechanical studies, published over the recent decade, showed that the development of theoretical calculation methods and a significant increase in the productivity of computing technology made it possible to calculate not only the structure and interaction energies of nanobiosystems, but also their vibrational and electronic spectra. © 2022 Author(s).
    • Evidence for Gravity Waves in the Thermosphere of Saturn and Implications for Global Circulation

      Brown, Z.L.; Medvedev, A.S.; Starichenko, E.D.; Koskinen, T.T.; Müller-Wodarg, I.C.F.; Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona (John Wiley and Sons Inc, 2022)
      Gravity wave (GW) signatures have been derived from temperature profiles observed by Cassini/Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph in the Saturnian thermosphere during the Grand Finale campaign. They demonstrate upward propagation of GW packets, their saturation, and breaking. We determined wave amplitudes, potential energy, and momentum fluxes and estimated the associated wave drag imposed by dissipating harmonics on the ambient flow. The data set of 18 profiles covers the middle and high latitudes of both hemispheres, which allows for exploring the global impact of waves. The diagnostics based on the Transformed Eulerian Mean and modified geostrophy approach reveal that the GW drag induces an equatorward flow in both hemispheres, facilitating transport of heat away from the auroral zones and redistributing energy across latitudes. Like all the outer planets, Saturn's thermosphere is hundreds of degrees hotter than what follows from radiative balance and these results help to explain the observed temperatures at all latitudes. © 2022. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
    • Observing System Simulation Experiments Today and Tomorrow

      Zeng, X.; Atlas, R.; Birk, R.J.; Carr, F.H.; Carrier, M.J.; Cucurull, L.; Hooke, W.H.; Kalnay, E.; Murtugudde, R.; Posselt, D.J.; et al. (American Meteorological Society, 2021)
    • A nanometric window on fullerene formation in the interstellar medium: Insights from molecular dynamics studies

      Thakur, A.K.; Muralidharan, K.; Zega, T.J.; Ziurys, L.M.; Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Arizona; Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona; Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Arizona; Department of Astronomy, Steward Observatory, University of Arizona; Arizona Radio Observatory, Steward Observatory, University of Arizona (American Institute of Physics Inc., 2022)
      Understanding the fundamental mechanisms that underlie the synthesis of fullerene molecules in the interstellar medium (ISM) and in the environments of astrophysical objects is an open question. In this regard, using classical molecular dynamics, we demonstrate the possibility of in situ formation of fullerene molecules, such as C60 from graphite, which is known to occur in the ISM, in particular, circumstellar environments. Specifically, when graphite is subjected to thermal and mechanical stimuli that are typical of circumstellar shells, we find that the graphite sheet edges undergo significant restructuring and curling, leading to edge-induced interlayer-interactions and formation of mechanically strained five-membered-ring structural units. These units serve as precursors for the formation of fullerene structures, such as pristine and metastable C60 molecules. The pathways leading to molecular C60 formation consist of a series of steps that involve bond-breakage and subsequent local rearrangement of atoms, with the activation energy barriers of the rate-limiting step(s) being comparable to the energetics of Stone-Wales rearrangement reactions. The identified chemical pathways provide fundamental insights into the mechanisms that underlie C60 formation. Moreover, they clearly demonstrate that top-down synthesis of C60 from graphitic sources is a viable synthesis route at conditions pertaining to circumstellar matter. © 2022 Author(s).
    • Network analysis reveals dysregulated functional patterns in type II diabetic skin

      Liu, C.; Ram, S.; Hurwitz, B.L.; Department of Biosystems Engineering, BIO5 Institute, University of Arizona; Department of Management Information Systems, BIO5 Institute, University of Arizona (NLM (Medline), 2022)
      Skin disorders are one of the most common complications of type II diabetes (T2DM). Long-term effects of high blood glucose leave individuals with T2DM more susceptible to cutaneous diseases, but its underlying molecular mechanisms are unclear. Network-based methods consider the complex interactions between genes which can complement the analysis of single genes in previous research. Here, we use network analysis and topological properties to systematically investigate dysregulated gene co-expression patterns in type II diabetic skin with skin samples from the Genotype-Tissue Expression database. Our final network consisted of 8812 genes from 73 subjects with T2DM and 147 non-T2DM subjects matched for age, sex, and race. Two gene modules significantly related to T2DM were functionally enriched in the pathway lipid metabolism, activated by PPARA and SREBF (SREBP). Transcription factors KLF10, KLF4, SP1, and microRNA-21 were predicted to be important regulators of gene expression in these modules. Intramodular analysis and betweenness centrality identified NCOA6 as the hub gene while KHSRP and SIN3B are key coordinators that influence molecular activities differently between T2DM and non-T2DM populations. We built a TF-miRNA-mRNA regulatory network to reveal the novel mechanism (miR-21-PPARA-NCOA6) of dysregulated keratinocyte proliferation, differentiation, and migration in diabetic skin, which may provide new insights into the susceptibility of skin disorders in T2DM patients. Hub genes and key coordinators may serve as therapeutic targets to improve diabetic skincare. © 2022. The Author(s).
    • The WOPR family protein Ryp1 is a key regulator of gene expression, development, and virulence in the thermally dimorphic fungal pathogen Coccidioides posadasii

      Alejandra Mandel, M.; Beyhan, S.; Voorhies, M.; Shubitz, L.F.; Galgiani, J.N.; Orbach, M.J.; Sil, A.; School of Plant Sciences, University of Arizona; Valley Fever Center for Excellence, University of Arizona (Public Library of Science, 2022)
      Coccidioides spp. are mammalian fungal pathogens endemic to the Southwestern US and other desert regions of Mexico, Central and South America, with the bulk of US infections occurring in California and Arizona. In the soil, Coccidioides grows in a hyphal form that differentiates into 3-5 micron asexual spores (arthroconidia). When arthroconidia are inhaled by mammals they undergo a unique developmental transition from polar hyphal growth to isotropic expansion with multiple rounds of nuclear division, prior to segmentation, forming large spherules filled with endospores. Very little is understood about the molecular basis of spherule formation. Here we characterize the role of the conserved transcription factor Ryp1 in Coccidioides development. We show that Coccidioides Δryp1 mutants have altered colony morphology under hypha-promoting conditions and are unable to form mature spherules under spherule-promoting conditions. We analyze the transcriptional profile of wildtype and Δryp1 mutant cells under hypha- and spherule-promoting conditions, thereby defining a set of hypha- or spherule-enriched transcripts ("morphology-regulated"genes) that are dependent on Ryp1 for their expression. Forty percent of morphology-regulated expression is Ryp1-dependent, indicating that Ryp1 plays a dual role in both hyphal and spherule development. Ryp1-dependent transcripts include key virulence factors such as SOWgp, which encodes the spherule outer wall glycoprotein. Concordant with its role in spherule development, we find that the Δryp1 mutant is completely avirulent in the mouse model of coccidioidomycosis, indicating that Ryp1-dependent pathways are essential for the ability of Coccidioides to cause disease. Vaccination of C57BL/6 mice with live Δryp1 spores does not provide any protection from lethal C. posadasii intranasal infection, consistent with our findings that the Δryp1 mutant fails to make mature spherules and likely does not express key antigens required for effective vaccination. Taken together, this work identifies the first transcription factor that drives mature spherulation and virulence in Coccidioides. © 2022 Mandel et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
    • Rapid photolithographic fabrication of high density optical interconnects using refractive index contrast polymers

      Frish, J.I.; Kleine, T.S.; Himmelhuber, R.; Showghi, S.; Nishant, A.; Kim, K.-J.; Jiang, L.; Martin, K.P.; Brusberg, L.; Pau, S.; et al. (Optica Publishing Group (formerly OSA), 2022)
      We have developed new polymer optical interconnect materials that we termrefractive index contrast (RIC) polymers that are ideally suited to a wide variety of photonic interconnect applications as the refractive index can be tuned over the range of n = 1.42 to 1.56, while index contrast Δn can be precisely tuned through composition and ultraviolet exposure; the waveguides can be directly patterned in dry films with no wet or dry etching processes required. RIC polymer interconnects thus have the ability to access numerous photonic platforms, including silicon photonic chips, ion-exchange (IOX) glass optical substrates, and optical fiber arrays. We demonstrate for the first time efficient single-mode polymer interconnect fabrication via a maskless lithography approach that exhibits low loss adiabatic coupling (∼1.5dB at 1550nm) to IOX waveguides through the formation of grayscale tapers. © 2022 Optica Publishing Group.
    • Overcoming mass transfer limitations in cross-linked polyethyleneimine-based adsorbents to enable selective CO2 capture at ambient temperature

      Hamdy, L.B.; Gougsa, A.; Chow, W.Y.; Russell, J.E.; García-Díez, E.; Kulakova, V.; Garcia, S.; Barron, A.R.; Taddei, M.; Andreoli, E.; et al. (Royal Society of Chemistry, 2022)
      New self-supported polyamine CO2 adsorbents are prepared by cross-linking branched polyethyleneimine (PEI) with 2,4,6-tris-(4-bromomethyl-3-fluoro-phenyl)-1,3,5-triazine (4BMFPT). Controlling the degree of cross-linking to ensure abundant free amine functionalities while maintaining a structure conducive to efficient mass transfer is key to accessing high CO2 adsorption and fast kinetics at ambient temperature. The polyamine-based adsorbent, PEI-4BMFPT, 10 : 1 (R), is composed of spherical particles up to 3 μm in diameter and demonstrates fast CO2 uptake of 2.31 mmol g−1 under 1 atm, 90% CO2/Ar at 30 °C. Its CO2/N2 selectivity, predicted by the ideal adsorbed solution theory is 575, equalling that of highly selective metal-organic frameworks. Based on humidified thermogravimetric analysis, it was observed that the presence of water promotes CO2 uptake capacity of 10 : 1 (R) to 3.27 mmol g−1 and results in strong chemisorption; likely by formation of ammonium carbonate and bicarbonate species. It is observed that CO2 uptake enhancement is highly subject to relative humidity and CO2 partial pressure conditions. When adsorption conditions combined low temperatures with low partial pressure CO2, 10 : 1 (R) showed reduced uptake. Tested under breakthrough conditions representative of post-combustion conditions, at 75% RH and 40 °C, CO2 uptake was reduced by 83% of the dry adsorption capacity. This body of work further advances the development of support-free CO2 adsorbents for ambient temperature applications and highlights the drastic effect that relative humidity and CO2 partial pressure have on uptake behaviour. © 2022 RSC
    • Fruit, Vegetable, and Physical Activity Guideline Adherence and Metabolic Syndrome in El Banco por Salud

      Standage-Beier, C.S.; Bakhshi, B.; Parra, O.D.; Soltani, L.; Spegman, D.J.; Molina, P.; Pereira, E.; Landes, L.; Mandarino, L.J.; Kohler, L.N.; et al. (MDPI, 2022)
      Adherence to dietary and physical activity recommendations has been associated with reductions in morbidity and mortality. The association between baseline adherence to fruit, vegetable, and physical activity guidelines and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in El Banco por Salud (El Banco) was examined. El Banco is a wellness biobank for Latino individuals affiliated with partnered Federally Qualified Health Centers in southern Arizona. Study participants (n = 972) were 65% female, 62.3% foreign-born, 56.3% obese, 29.2% food insecure, and with an average age of 51.3 years. Adherence scores were developed using baseline questionnaires for fruits and vegetable consumption and self-reported physical activity. Adherence was low in those fully meeting guidelines for fruit, vegetable, and physical activity at 14.6%, 37.5%, and 23.5%, respectively. Roughly 65% (n = 630) had ≥3 cardiometabolic risk factors. Large waist circumference was the most prevalent risk factor at 77.9%. Adherence to physical activity recommendations differed by MetS status with 32.8% without MetS reporting ≥150 min of physical activity per week compared to 18.5% in those with MetS (p < 0.001). There were no significant associations with adherence to any guidelines and MetS in the fully adjusted model. Overall, in this sample guideline adherence was low and the cardiometabolic risk factors prevalence was high. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
    • Genome Sequences of Marichromatium gracile HOL-1 and Its Purple Photosynthetic Coisolate, Afifella sp. H1R

      Kyndt, J.A.; Dubey, S.; Frazier, N.; Meyer, T.E.; Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Arizona (American Society for Microbiology, 2022)
      We sequenced the genomes of both the purple sulfur gammaproteobacterium Marichromatium gracile HOL-1 and another purple photosynthetic organism, strain H1R, that was originally isolated as an unidentified contaminant. Through genome sequencing, we have now identified organism H1R as a species of Afifella. A whole-genome-based phylogenetic analysis of both species is provided. Copyright © 2022 Kyndt et al.
    • Relationship Between Age at Menopause, Obesity, and Incident Heart Failure: The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study

      Ebong, I.A.; Wilson, M.D.; Appiah, D.; Michos, E.D.; Racette, S.B.; Villablanca, A.; Breathett, K.; Lutsey, P.L.; Wellons, M.; Watson, K.E.; et al. (NLM (Medline), 2022)
      Background The mechanisms linking menopausal age and heart failure (HF) incidence are controversial. We investigated for heterogeneity by obesity on the relationship between menopausal age and HF incidence. Methods and Results Using postmenopausal women who attended the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study Visit 4, we estimated hazard ratios of incident HF associated with menopausal age using Cox proportional hazards models, testing for effect modification by obesity and adjusting for HF risk factors. Women were categorized by menopausal age: <45 years, 45 to 49 years, 50 to 54 years, and ≥55 years. Among 4441 postmenopausal women, aged 63.5±5.5 years, there were 903 incident HF events over a mean follow-up of 16.5 years. The attributable risk of generalized and central obesity for HF incidence was greatest among women who experienced menopause at age ≥55 years: 11.09/1000 person-years and 7.38/1000 person-years, respectively. There were significant interactions of menopausal age with body mass index and waist circumference for HF incidence, Pinteraction 0.02 and 0.001, respectively. The hazard ratios of incident HF for a SD increase in body mass index was elevated in women with menopausal age <45 years [1.39 (1.05-1.84)]; 45-49 years [1.33, (1.06-1.67)]; and ≥55 years [2.02, (1.41-2.89)]. The hazard ratio of incident HF for a SD increase in waist circumference was elevated only in women with menopausal age ≥55 years [2.93, (1.85-4.65)]. Conclusions As obesity worsened, the risk of developing HF became significantly greater when compared with women with lower body mass index and waist circumference, particularly among those who had experienced menopause at age ≥55 years.
    • The P2X7 Receptor Promotes Colorectal Inflammation and Tumorigenesis by Modulating Gut Microbiota and the Inflammasome

      Bernardazzi, C.; Castelo-Branco, M.T.L.; Pêgo, B.; Ribeiro, B.E.; Rosas, S.L.B.; Santana, P.T.; Machado, J.C.; Leal, C.; Thompson, F.; Coutinho-Silva, R.; et al. (MDPI, 2022)
      Background: Given the role of the P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) in inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), we investigated its role in the development and progression of colitis-associated colorectal cancer (CA-CRC). Methods: CA-CRC was induced in P2X7R+/+ and P2X7R−/− mice with azoxymethane (AOM) combined with dextran sodium sulfate (DSS). In a therapeutic protocol, P2X7R+/+ mice were treated with a P2X7R-selective inhibitor (A740003). Mice were evaluated with follow-up video endoscopy with endoluminal ultrasound biomicroscopy. Colon tissue was analyzed for histological changes, densities of immune cells, expression of transcription factors, cytokines, genes, DNA methylation, and microbiome composition of fecal samples by sequencing for 16S rRNA. Results: The P2X7R+/+ mice displayed more ulcers, tumors, and greater wall thickness, than the P2X7R−/− and the P2X7R+/+ mice treated with A740003. The P2X7R+/+ mice showed increased accumulation of immune cells, production of proinflammatory cytokines, activation of intracellular signaling pathways, and upregulation of NLRP3 and NLRP12 genes, stabilized after the P2X7R-blockade. Microbial changes were observed in the P2X7R−/− and P2X7R+/+-induced mice, partially reversed by the A740003 treatment. Conclusions: Regulatory mechanisms activated downstream of the P2X7R in combination with signals from a dysbiotic microbiota result in the activation of intracellular signaling pathways and the inflammasome, amplifying the inflammatory response and promoting CA-CRC development. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
    • Insights into Improving Risk and Safety Communication through Environmental Health Literacy

      Lindsey, M.; Richmond, B.; Quintanar, D.R.; Spradlin, J.; Halili, L.; Southwest Environmental Health Sciences Center, College of Pharmacy, University of Arizona (MDPI, 2022)
      Messages and materials developed to communicate risk to the public are often misunder-stood because the public misperceives risk, science information is too complex, leading to audience misunderstandings, and an overarching focus on the details of the problem without supplying solutions or actions to keep the public safe. This article describes the creation of a communication model to improve risk communication that includes safety information. The authors describe essential components of Risk and Safety Communication based on features of Environmental Health Literacy (EHL), which informed the creation of a protocol for developing risk communication messages and materials. An online training module was developed to aid communicators in creating information to enable the public to protect themselves, their family, and their community, leading to improved comprehension of how the environment impacts health. These principles were developed in a series of focus groups, identifying how the public perceives risk, how they prefer to receive communication, and how participants respond to materials developed using the principles. Important topics discussed are understanding the literacy levels of the target audience, applying that understanding to developing messages, how risk perception leads to misperceptions and how to address those misperceptions by using plain language when developing focused messages and materials. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
    • CondiDiag1.0: A flexible online diagnostic tool for conditional sampling and budget analysis in the E3SM atmosphere model (EAM)

      Wan, H.; Zhang, K.; Rasch, P.J.; Larson, V.E.; Zeng, X.; Zhang, S.; Dixon, R.; Department of Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, The University of Arizona (Copernicus GmbH, 2022)
      Numerical models used in weather and climate prediction take into account a comprehensive set of atmospheric processes (i.e., phenomena) such as the resolved and unresolved fluid dynamics, radiative transfer, cloud and aerosol life cycles, and mass or energy exchanges with the Earth's surface. In order to identify model deficiencies and improve predictive skills, it is important to obtain process-level understanding of the interactions between different processes. Conditional sampling and budget analysis are powerful tools for process-oriented model evaluation, but they often require tedious ad hoc coding and large amounts of instantaneous model output, resulting in inefficient use of human and computing resources. This paper presents an online diagnostic tool that addresses this challenge by monitoring model variables in a generic manner as they evolve within the time integration cycle. The tool is convenient to use. It allows users to select sampling conditions and specify monitored variables at run time. Both the evolving values of the model variables and their increments caused by different atmospheric processes can be monitored and archived. Online calculation of vertical integrals is also supported. Multiple sampling conditions can be monitored in a single simulation in combination with unconditional sampling. The paper explains in detail the design and implementation of the tool in the Energy Exascale Earth System Model (E3SM) version 1. The usage is demonstrated through three examples: a global budget analysis of dust aerosol mass concentration, a composite analysis of sea salt emission and its dependency on surface wind speed, and a conditionally sampled relative humidity budget. The tool is expected to be easily portable to closely related atmospheric models that use the same or similar data structures and time integration methods. © Copyright: