Serse. Ombra mai fu
George Frideric Handel ()
- Handel, George Frideric, 1685-1759 (Composer)
George Frideric Handel ()
Claude Debussy ()
Sarcopenia, a disease defined by age-related muscle loss and function, impacts each and every one of us as we age. Medical research over the past 40 years has identified dozens of factors that contribute to Sarcopenia, including, hormonal changes, deficiencies in nutrition, denervation, changes in physical activity and diseases. Developing effective therapeutic treatments for Sarcopenia is dependent on identifying the mechanisms by which these factors affect muscle loss and understanding the interrelationship of these mechanisms. I conducted my research by compiling and analyzing several previous studies on many different mechanisms that contribute to Sarcopenia. Of these mechanisms, I determined the most significant mechanisms and mapped them out on a visual presentation. In addition to the contributing factors listed above, I found that dysregulated cell signaling, mitochondrial abnormalities, impaired autophagy/protein regulation, altered nitric oxide production, and systemic inflammation all contribute to Sarcopenia. Their impact on skeletal muscle is manifested by reduced satellite function, reduced regenerative capacity, loss of muscle mass, accumulation of damaged products, and fibrosis. My research clearly demonstrated that there was not a one-to-one correlation between factors and specific pathological characteristics of Sarcopenia. Instead, factors funneled into a discrete number of cellular processes, including cell proliferation, protein synthesis, and autophagy and apoptosis. Based on my findings, the overall cause of Sarcopenia appears to be a loss of balance between these pathways. The results of my thesis indicate that Sarcopenia is a multifactorial disorder, and therefore, effective therapy should consist of those that prevent necrosis associated with autophagy and apoptosis.
Claude Debussy ()
The concept of this thesis is the importance of dietary fiber and how it can be further integrated into the American diet. The adequate intake (AI) of fiber for men and women is thirty-eight and twenty-five grams respectively. I was inspired to focus my research on increasing fiber intake because the typical American consumes fifteen grams of dietary fiber which is well below the AI. The purpose of this project was to inform individuals on the importance of dietary fiber, but also to create and compile recipes which would make it easy for people to increase their intake of dietary fiber. There are two parts to this project: a literature review and a cookbook. The literature review discusses the health benefits of fiber as to how its properties of viscosity and fermentability allow for weight loss, decrease appetite and energy intake, decrease postprandial insulin and glucose levels, impact gut health, lower blood lipid levels in order to protect against atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease, decrease inflammation, and reduce levels of inflammatory marker C-reactive protein. The cookbook provides the ideas for integrating high fiber foods into one's diet. There are three different categories in the cookbook: snacks, lunch and dinner, and breakfast. The snacks and breakfast provide around five grams of fiber per serving, if not more, whereas the lunch and dinner options provide around fifteen grams in a meal. Not only are these recipes high in fiber, but they are also nutrient dense, meaning they provide more than just the listed health benefits in the literature review. Having these recipes and increasing awareness of the benefits which they contain will help individuals to meet the AI of fiber while still enjoying delicious meals.
In motor training, transfer is defined as the gain/loss of performance in one task as a result of training on another. In our laboratory, we have observed that training on a multi-joint coordination task (which simulates arm and wrist movement when feeding) transfers to a dexterity task (which simulates finger and hand movement when dressing), such that there are improvements in the dexterity task that emerge without having trained on that specific task. More recently, we have shown that the dexterity task transfers to the multi-joint coordination task. These collective findings suggest that there are shared movement patterns between these two functional motor tasks that may yield this bi-directional transfer effect. Therefore, the objective of this thesis project was to collect kinematic data of the hand to use in future principal component analyses to better understand the underlying mechanism of transfer between these two functional motor tasks. The joint angles of the hand were recorded during twenty second trials of the multi-joint coordination task and the dexterity task. The ranges of motion for the joints in the hand during naïve performance of both motor tasks were analyzed. From a linear regression analysis, we observe that the hand’s ranges of motion were strongly correlated between the two tasks, which suggests that these two functionally different tasks may share movement patterns in terms of joint angles. This similarity of joint angles of the hand may play a role in why we observe this bi-directional transfer between the dexterity and multi-joint coordination tasks. Following neurological injury, patients participate in physical therapy in order to retrain their nervous system to restore lost motor function(s). If patients can only practice a limited number of activities in therapy, our data suggest that other activities may also improve through transfer of training. Kinematic data collection may inform how much a patient improves with motor training and why there may be an improvement in untrained motor tasks.
In the face of the world's most pressing sustainability challenges, such as climate change, ecosystem degradation, and loss of biodiversity, the following questions must be explored: Why are these situation occurring? How can we understand their complexity? How can we research these challenges to mitigate negative outcomes? This thesis investigates the relationships between people and nature through coupled human and natural systems, or CHANS, and argues for a transdisciplinary research approach for sustainability science. The following questions and topics are discussed: 1. The Complexity of Sustainability and Implications for Traditional Research Approaches 2. Coupled Human and Natural Systems Research 3. What is Transdisciplinary Research, and How Does it Relate to the Living With Locusts Team's Coupled Human and Natural Systems Research? This thesis uses the case of a team researching international locust plagues to argue for this approach. The team's project is titled "Living With Locusts" and is directed by Arianne Cease of Arizona State University's School of Sustainability.
Alzheimer's disease affects a large number of Americans every year, and research on the causes and possible prevention continues to increase. Alzheimer's disease is a form of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking, and behavior and is thought to be caused by beta-amyloid plaques that form in the brain. In recent years, dogs have been used more and more as an animal model looking at Alzheimer's disease and cognitive dysfunction. Dogs serve as a reliable animal model because effected dogs naturally form the same beta-amyloid plaques that affected humans do as they age. Previous research has shown that older dogs perform worse on various memory tasks than do younger dogs, however researchers have struggled to find a test for dog cognitive dysfunction that is brief and can be performed in the home. The current study aimed to find a brief memory task that requires few materials, but is still reliable. The results of this study do not support the hypothesis that older dogs would perform worse than younger dogs if tested to find a treat with varying time delays of 15, 30, and 45 seconds. The results of this experiment showed a main effect of age (F = 8.40, d.f. 1, 19, p < 0.01) and delay (F = 15.14, d.f. 2, 30, p < 0.01), but age-delay interaction was not significant (F = 2.53, d.f. 2, 30, p = 0.09). Future studies should be performed using a larger sample size and this same protocol to attempt to raise the participation level of the dogs.
Sleep is imperative for health and wellness with direct impacts on brain function, physiology, emotional well-being, performance and safety when compromised. Adolescents and young adults are increasingly affected by factors affecting the maintenance of regular sleep schedules. College and university students are a potentially vulnerable population to sleep deprivation and sleep insufficiency. Possible factors that could contribute to poor sleep hygiene include, but are not limited to, academic pressures, social activities, and increased screen time. Arguably, students are still experiencing bone mineralization, until the age of 30 or even 40 years old, which makes it more important to understand the effects that altered sleep patterns could have on continued development of bone health. It is our understanding that to date, studies assessing the risk of sleep insufficiency on bone mineral density in college students have not been conducted. We hypothesized that college-aged students, between the ages of 18-25 years, with shorter sleep durations, greater sleep schedule variability, and poorer sleep environments will have significantly lower bone mineral density. ActiGraph monitoring, via a wrist ActiWatch was used to quantitatively measure sleep habits for up to 7 consecutive days. During the week-long study participants also captured their self-reported sleep data through the use of a sleep diary. Participants were measured one time within the study for bone mineral density of the lumbar spine and total hip through a dual energy x-ray absorptiometry. This was a preliminary analysis of a larger cross-sectional analysis looked at 17 participants, of which there were 14 females and 3 males, (n=5, 1 and 11 Hispanic, Black and White, respectively). The mean age of participants was 20.8±1.7 y with an average BMI of 22.9±3.2 kg/m2. ActiWatch measurement data showed a mean daily sleep duration of participants to be 437.5 ± 43.1 (372.5 – 509.4) minutes. Mean sleep efficiency (minutes of sleep divided by minutes of time in bed) and mean number of awakenings were 87.4±4.3 (75.4-93.4) minutes and 32.1±6.4 (22.3-42.7) awakenings, respectively. The median time for wake after sleep onset (WASO) was 34.5±10.5 (18.3-67.4) minutes. The mean bone mineral density (BMD) for the hips was 1.06±0.14 (0.81-1.28) g/cm2 with a mean BMD of the lumbar spine being 1.24±0.12 (0.92-1.43) g/cm2. Age-matched Z-scores of the hips was 0.31±0.96 (-1.6-2.1) and lumbar spine was 0.53 (IQR: 0.13, 0.98; -2.25-1.55). Neither sleep duration nor sleep efficiency was significantly correlated to BMD of either locations. While WASO was positively associated with hip and spine BMD, this value was not statistically significant in this population. Overall, associations between sleep and BMD of the femur and spine were not seen in this cohort. Further work utilizing a larger cohort will allow for control of covariates while looking for potential associations between bone health, sleep duration and efficiency.
Death with Dignity is a concept that initially began as a set of philosophical and ethical principles that sought to define what it meant to die a "good" death that was reasonable to the person experiencing the dying process. This dying process is terminal illness, or any condition that cannot be cured and who's ultimate prognosis is death. Today, Death with Dignity still embodies this, but it is also a set of legal and medical treatments and practices that can be used to aid terminal patients in accomplishing a "good" death. The Death with Dignity treatment options that are chiefly discussed in this study are patient withdrawal of care, patient control of pain medications, and physician-assisted suicide. Physician-assisted suicide is legal in six states in the US excluding Arizona. Considering that Oregon is the first state to pass a Death with Dignity Act and that it is the precedent for all other Acts, this study sought to understand the differences in perception of physician-assisted suicide between Arizona and Oregon in the pursuit of clarifying what barriers are still in place in Arizona to passing a Death with Dignity act. To ask the question of "Do physicians and ethics committee members in Arizona support Death with Dignity in the forms of patient control of pain medications, withdrawal of treatment, and physician-assisted suicide?", a literature review was conducted to determine important national and local perceptions of physician-assisted suicide and Death with Dignity, a 14-question, structured survey was created with the identified concerns, and it was distributed to Arizona health care workers by email and in person. This survey was approved by ASU's Institutional Review Board. This survey found that 100% of participants would vote for a Death with Dignity Act in Arizona if it were on a ballot measure. 76% of participants would aid a terminally-ill and eligible patient in physician-assisted suicide under some circumstances if it were legal in Arizona, and 24% of participants would never aid a patient in physician-assisted suicide. The concerns with physician-assisted suicide that were marked most important by Arizona healthcare workers were that hospice is a better option for the terminally ill and that physician-assisted suicide may be misused with disadvantaged persons. The most important factors of terminal illness that influence views of physician-assisted suicide marked by Arizona healthcare workers were the amount of pain the patient is expected to experience in the end of life, the amount of pain that can be relieved for the patient, the expected quality of life of the patient, and the patient's right to autonomy in healthcare. The significant differences between Oregon and Arizona in this study were the importance of expected mental decline of patient, patient's wishes that differ from family's, and hospice being a better option than suicide in influencing views of physician-assisted suicide. These differences could be deemed hurdles to Death with Dignity legislation in Arizona. This study recommended addressing those differences in public education and medical education and seeking Death with Dignity legislation via ballot measure.