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  • Record: found
  • Abstract: found
  • Article: found

Marrying Medicine and Materials: Artemisinin (Qinghaosu) Particle is Soft Enough for Scratching Hard SiC Wafer in Water

Silicon carbide (SiC) single crystals, along with sapphire and silicon, are one of most important substrates for high-brightness LED fabrications. Owing to extremely high hardness (Mohs’ scale of 9.5) and chemical inertness, the polishing rate of SiC with conventional chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) methods is not high, and surface scratches are also inevitable because of using slurry containing hard abrasives such as silica particles. Here artemisinin (Qinghaosu) crystals, very soft molecular solids, were found, for the first time to the best of our knowledge, to effectively polish SiC wafers even in pure water as demonstrated by proof-of-concept scratching experiments using atomic force microscopy (AFM). The underlying mechanism is attributed to activated oxidation of SiC by mechanically released reactive ·OH free radicals from the endoperoxide bridges. The preliminary results reported here have important implications for developing novel alternative green and scratch-free polishing methods for hard-brittle substrates including SiC and others.
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  • Article: found

Statistical Analysis of Numerical Preclinical Radiobiological Data

Helene Hill (corresponding), Joel Pitt (2016)
Background: Scientific fraud is an increasingly vexing problem. Many current programs for fraud detection focus on image manipulation, while techniques for detection based on anomalous patterns that may be discoverable in the underlying numerical data get much less attention, even though these techniques are often easy to apply. Methods: We applied statistical techniques in considering and comparing data sets from ten researchers in one laboratory and three outside investigators to determine whether anomalous patterns in data from a research teaching assistant (RTS) were likely to have occurred by chance. Rightmost digits of values in RTS data sets were not, as expected, uniform; equal pairs of terminal digits occurred at higher than expected frequency (> 10%); and, an unexpectedly large number of data triples commonly produced in such research included values near their means as an element. We applied standard statistical tests (chi-squared goodness of fit, binomial probabilities) to determine the likelihood of the first two anomalous patterns, and developed a new statistical model to test the third. Results: Application of the three tests to various data sets reported by RTS resulted in repeated rejection of the hypotheses (often at p-levels well below 0.001) that anomalous patterns in those data may have occurred by chance. Similar application to data sets from other investigators were entirely consistent with chance occurrence. Conclusions: This analysis emphasizes the importance of access to raw data that form the bases of publications, reports and grant applications in order to evaluate the correctness of the conclusions, and the importance of applying statistical methods to detect anomalous, especially potentially fabricated, numerical results.
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Review of ‘The Spherical Nucleic Acids mRNA Detection Paradox’

    Rated 4 of 5. Gal Haimovich on 2016-01-13 (2015)
An important evaluation of SmartFlare, but lacks quantification & many controls.
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Review of ‘Lipids contribute to epigenetic control via chromatin structure and functions’

    Rated 4 of 5. Gerd Schmitz on 2016-01-04 (2015)
After modification, the manuscript should be acceptable.
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Efficacy of PPV23 in Preventing Pneumococcal Pneumonia in Adults at Increased Risk – A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Background Pneumococcal community-acquired pneumonia (pCAP) is the most frequent form of pneumonia. The elderly and adults with underlying diseases are at an increased risk of developing pCAP. The 23-valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPV23) was licensed over 30 years ago and is recommended as the standard intervention in many countries across the globe, although its efficacy continues to be debated. We performed a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to investigate the effect of PPV23 for preventing pCAP in adults ≥60 years of age. Methods An existing Cochrane Review was updated to Oct 2014 using a systematic literature search to select appropriate RCTs. DerSimonian and Laird random-effects meta-analyses were performed and odd ratios (OR) with 95%-confidence intervals (CI) and p-values were calculated for the descriptive analyses. Reasons for heterogeneity were explored by subgroup analyses. Results Meta-analysis of PPV23 efficacy included four studies. Three of them did not demonstrate efficacy for PPV23. The body of evidence indicated statistically significant heterogeneity (I 2 = 78%, p = 0.004) that could be explained by subgroup analysis by “study setting”. Further effect modifiers for pCAP were “continent of trial” (p<0.01), and “method of pneumococcal diagnostics” (p = 0.001). Subgroup analyses revealed that the only study showing efficacy for PPV23 was an outlier. Overall, the validity of the meta-analytic PPV23 efficacy assessment was confirmed by the meta-analysis of all-cause CAP including six studies. Discussion Inconsistencies in PPV23 treatment effects to prevent pCAP could solely be explained by one outlier study that was performed in nursing homes in Japan. The effect modifier “method of pneumococcal diagnostics” should be interpreted carefully, since methodological weaknesses are not restricted to one special method only, which would justify the exclusion of certain studies. Overall, we conclude from our meta-analysis that to date there is no proof that PPV23 can prevent pCAP in a general, community-dwelling elderly population.
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Levels of maternal care in dogs affect adult offspring temperament

Dog puppies are born in a state of large neural immaturity; therefore, the nervous system is sensitive to environmental influences early in life. In primates and rodents, early experiences, such as maternal care, have been shown to have profound and lasting effects on the later behaviour and physiology of offspring. We hypothesised that this would also be the case for dogs with important implications for the breeding of working dogs. In the present study, variation in the mother-offspring interactions of German Shepherd dogs within the Swedish breeding program for military working dogs was studied by video recording 22 mothers with their litters during the first three weeks postpartum. The aim was to classify mothers with respect to their level of maternal care and to investigate the effect of this care on pup behaviour in a standardised temperament test carried out at approximately 18 months of age. The results show that females differed consistently in their level of maternal care, which significantly affected the adult behaviour of the offspring, mainly with respect to behaviours classified as Physical and Social Engagement, as well as Aggression. Taking maternal quality into account in breeding programs may therefore improve the process of selecting working dogs.