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Analyzing rat sciatic nerve fibers under various electrical stimuli

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Abstract Modern imaging techniques for sciatic nerves often use imaging techniques that can clearly find myelinated axons (Group A and Group B and analyze their properties, but have trouble with the more numerous Remak Fibers (Group C). In this paper,

Abstract Modern imaging techniques for sciatic nerves often use imaging techniques that can clearly find myelinated axons (Group A and Group B and analyze their properties, but have trouble with the more numerous Remak Fibers (Group C). In this paper, Group A and B fibers are analyzed while also analyzing Remak fibers using osmium tetroxide staining and imaging with the help of transmission electron microscopy. Using this method, nerves had various electrical stimuli attached to them and were analyzed as such. They were analyzed with a cuff electrode attached, a stimulator attached, and both, with images taken at the center of the nerve and the ends of them. The number and area taken by the Remak fibers were analyzed, along with the g-ratios of the Group A and B fibers. These were analyzed to help deduce the overall health of the fibers along with vacuolization, and mitochondria available. While some important information was gained from this evaluation, further testing has to be done to improve the myelin detection system, along with analyzing the proper and necessary Remak fibers and the role they play. The research tries to thoroughly look at the necessary material and find a way to use it as a guide to further experimentation with electrical stimuli, and notes the differences found within and without various groups, various points of observation, and various stimuli as a whole. Nevertheless, this research allows a strong look into the benefits of transmission electron microscopy and the ability to assess electrical stimulation from these points.

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Date Created
2018-05

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The Ethics of Brain-Computer Interfaces

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The development of computational systems known as brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) offers the possibility of allowing individuals disabled by neurological disorders such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and ischemic stroke the ability to perform relatively complex tasks such as communicating with

The development of computational systems known as brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) offers the possibility of allowing individuals disabled by neurological disorders such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and ischemic stroke the ability to perform relatively complex tasks such as communicating with others and walking. BCIs are closed-loop systems that record physiological signals from the brain and translate those signals into commands that control an external device such as a wheelchair or a robotic exoskeleton. Despite the potential for BCIs to vastly improve the lives of almost one billion people, one question arises: Just because we can use brain-computer interfaces, should we? The human brain is an embodiment of the mind, which is largely seen to determine a person's identity, so a number of ethical and philosophical concerns emerge over current and future uses of BCIs. These concerns include privacy, informed consent, autonomy, identity, enhancement, and justice. In this thesis, I focus on three of these issues: privacy, informed consent, and autonomy. The ultimate purpose of brain-computer interfaces is to provide patients with a greater degree of autonomy; thus, many of the ethical issues associated with BCIs are intertwined with autonomy. Currently, brain-computer interfaces exist mainly in the domain of medicine and medical research, but recently companies have started commercializing BCIs and providing them at affordable prices. These consumer-grade BCIs are primarily for non-medical purposes, and so they are beyond the scope of medicine. As BCIs become more widespread in the near future, it is crucial for interdisciplinary teams of ethicists, philosophers, engineers, and physicians to collaborate to address these ethical concerns now before BCIs become more commonplace.

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Date Created
2016-05

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Innovative strategies used to teach mathematics: A look at educators and classrooms across six countries

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Mathematics is an increasingly critical subject and the achievement of students in mathematics has been the focus of many recent reports and studies. However, few studies exist that both observe and discuss the specific teaching and assessment techniques employed in

Mathematics is an increasingly critical subject and the achievement of students in mathematics has been the focus of many recent reports and studies. However, few studies exist that both observe and discuss the specific teaching and assessment techniques employed in the classrooms across multiple countries. The focus of this study is to look at classrooms and educators across six high achieving countries to identify and compare teaching strategies being used. In Finland, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, and Switzerland, twenty educators were interviewed and fourteen educators were observed teaching. Themes were first identified by comparing individual teacher responses within each country. These themes were then grouped together across countries and eight emerging patterns were identified. These strategies include students active involvement in the classroom, students given written feedback on assessments, students involvement in thoughtful discussion about mathematical concepts, students solving and explaining mathematics problems at the board, students exploring mathematical concepts either before or after being taught the material, students engagement in practical applications, students making connections between concepts, and students having confidence in their ability to understand mathematics. The strategies identified across these six high achieving countries can inform educators in their efforts of increasing student understanding of mathematical concepts and lead to an improvement in mathematics performance.

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Date Created
2014-12

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Life, Death, and In-between: When Biomedical Technology Meets Science Fiction Films

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Science fiction has a unique ability to express, analyze, and critique concepts in a subtle way that emphasizes a point but is still entertaining to the audience. Because of science fiction's ability to do this it has long been a

Science fiction has a unique ability to express, analyze, and critique concepts in a subtle way that emphasizes a point but is still entertaining to the audience. Because of science fiction's ability to do this it has long been a powerful way to ask questions that would normally not be addressed. As such, this paper provides an overview of the effects of biomedical technology in science fiction films. The discussions in this paper will analyze the different portrayals of the technology in the viewed cinematic pieces and the effects they have on the characters in the film. The discussion will begin with the films that have technology based in Genetic Engineering. This will then be followed by a discussion of the biomedical technology based in the fields of Endocrinology; Reanimation; Preservation; Prosthetics; Physical Metamorphosis; Super-Drugs and Super-Viruses; and Diagnostic, Surgical, and Monitoring Equipment. At the end of this paper movie summaries are provided to assist in clarifying plot details.

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Date Created
2014-05

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The Role of Retention and Forgetting in Context Dependent Sensorimotor Memory of Dexterous Manipulation

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The role of retention and forgetting of context dependent sensorimotor memory of dexterous manipulation was explored. Human subjects manipulated a U-shaped object by switching the handle to be grasped (context) three times, and then came back two weeks later to

The role of retention and forgetting of context dependent sensorimotor memory of dexterous manipulation was explored. Human subjects manipulated a U-shaped object by switching the handle to be grasped (context) three times, and then came back two weeks later to lift the same object in the opposite context relative to that experience on the last block. On each context switch, an interference of the previous block of trials was found resulting in manipulation errors (object tilt). However, no significant re-learning was found two weeks later for the first block of trials (p = 0.826), indicating that the previously observed interference among contexts lasted a very short time. Interestingly, upon switching to the other context, sensorimotor memories again interfered with visually-based planning. This means that the memory of lifting in the first context somehow blocked the memory of lifting in the second context. In addition, the performance in the first trial two weeks later and the previous trial of the same context were not significantly different (p = 0.159). This means that subjects are able to retain long-term sensorimotor memories. Lastly, the last four trials in which subjects switched contexts were not significantly different from each other (p = 0.334). This means that the interference from sensorimotor memories of lifting in opposite contexts was weaker, thus eventually leading to the attainment of steady performance.

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Date Created
2013-05

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Easily deliverable and elastic thermosensitive physical-chemical gelling hydrogels for embolization

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Rupture of intracranial aneurysms causes a subarachnoid hemorrhage, which is often lethal health event. A minimally invasive method of solving this problem may involve a material, which can be administered as a liquid and then becomes a strong solid within

Rupture of intracranial aneurysms causes a subarachnoid hemorrhage, which is often lethal health event. A minimally invasive method of solving this problem may involve a material, which can be administered as a liquid and then becomes a strong solid within minutes preventing flow of blood in the aneurysm. Here we report on the development of temperature responsive copolymers, which are deliverable through a microcatheter at body temperature and then rapidly cure to form a highly elastic hydrogel. To our knowledge, this is the first physical-and chemical-crosslinked hydrogel capable of rapid crosslinking at temperatures above the gel transition temperature. The polymer system, poly(N-isopropylacrylamide-co-cysteamine-co-Jeffamine® M-1000 acrylamide) and poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate, was evaluated in wide-neck aneurysm flow models to evaluate the stability of the hydrogels. Investigation of this polymer system indicates that the Jeffamine® M-1000 causes the gels to retain water, resulting in gels that are initially weak and viscous, but become stronger and more elastic after chemical crosslinking.

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Date Created
2013-05