Sensory Perception (sensory + perception)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts


ABSTRACT Free-choice profiling (FCP) was carried out in order to investigate how naive consumers (who had never tried the product before) described and perceived passion-fruit juice. This method allows participants to use their own attributes to describe and quantify food products and beverages. The study used four different samples of passion-fruit juice, analyzed by 10 consumers in three replicates. The data were analyzed by using generalized Procrustes analysis. The first and second dimension accounted for 78.7% of the variance. The product consensus configuration revealed that assessors were able to reproduce samples' description, and also to differentiate samples. Free-choice profiling is a useful method for describing consumer perception of passion-fruit juice. [source]


ABSTRACT This study tests the possibility that sensory attributes are affected by the method by which a food is transferred to the mouth. For example, hot liquids appear to be considerably hotter when taken through a straw than when taken using a cup. Pre-weighed samples of two vanilla flavoured dairy custards were presented, in random order, to 16 trained panellists using a spoon, an 11-mm diameter straw or a modified straw that had a 4-mm diameter constriction within it. Panellists rated products using a subset of attributes generated by a quantitative descriptive analysis panel. The amount ingested was measured by re-weighing each sample after assessment. Each experiment was repeated three times. There were significant differences in the amount ingested for the two products. The delivery method had no effect on the sensory attributes of the products other than for thickness and melting, where products taken with the spoon were rated as less viscous than when taken through a straw. The constriction in the straw had no effect on either the amount ingested or on any of the sensory attributes. This study demonstrates that resistance to sucking does not affect perception of thickness. [source]


ABSTRACT Sensory perceptions of consumer products are generally multivariate. Quality assurance of these products depends on methods that account for multidimensionality. In this paper it is shown how to set multivariate specifications and to use them to establish control charts and acceptance sampling plans for sensory measures of food and beverage products. OC curves describing the operating characteristics of the control charts and the sampling plans are given. [source]

Genetic manipulation, whole-cell recordings and functional imaging of the sensorimotor cortex of behaving mice

C. C. H. Petersen
Abstract Sensory processing, sensorimotor integration and motor control are amongst the most basic functions of the brain and yet our understanding of how the underlying neuronal networks operate and contribute to behaviour is very limited. The relative simplicity of the mouse whisker sensorimotor system is helpful for detailed quantitative analyses of motor control and perception during active sensory processing. Recent technical advances now allow the measurement of membrane potential in awake-behaving mice, using whole-cell recordings and voltage-sensitive dye imaging. With these recording techniques, it is possible to directly correlate neuronal activity with behaviour. However, in order to obtain causal evidence for the specific contributions of different neuronal networks to behaviour, it is critical to manipulate the system in a highly controlled manner. Advances in molecular neurobiology, gene delivery and mouse genetics provide techniques capable of layer, column and cell-type specific control of gene expression in the mouse neocortex. Over the next years, we anticipate considerable advances in our understanding of brain function through measuring and manipulating neuronal activity with unprecedented precision to probe the molecular and synaptic mechanisms underlying simple forms of active sensory perception and associative learning. [source]

Dopamine and sensory tissue development in Drosophila melanogaster

Wendi Neckameyer
Abstract Dopamine is an important signaling molecule in the nervous system; it also plays a vital role in the development of diverse non-neuronal tissues in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. The current study demonstrates that males depleted of dopamine as third instar larvae (via inhibition of the biosynthetic enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase) demonstrated abnormalities in courtship behavior as adults. These defects were suggestive of abnormalities in sensory perception and/or processing. Electroretinograms (ERGs) of eyes from adults depleted of dopamine for 1 day as third instar larvae revealed diminished or absent on- and off-transients. These sensory defects were rescued by the addition of L -DOPA in conjunction with tyrosine hydroxylase inhibition during the larval stage. Depletion of dopamine in the first or second larval instar was lethal, but this was not due to a general inhibition of proliferative cells. To establish that dopamine was synthesized in tissues destined to become part of the adult sensory apparatus, transgenic lines were generated containing 1 or 4 kb of 5, upstream sequences from the Drosophila tyrosine hydroxylase gene (DTH) fused to the E. coli ,-galactosidase reporter. The DTH promoters directed expression of the reporter gene in discrete and consistent patterns within the imaginal discs, in addition to the expected expression in gonadal, brain, and cuticular tissues. The ,-galactosidase expression colocalized with tyrosine hydroxylase protein. These results are consistent with a developmental requirement for dopamine in the normal physiology of adult sensory tissues. 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. J Neurobiol 47: 280,294, 2001 [source]

Long-range connectivity of mouse primary somatosensory barrel cortex

Rachel Aronoff
Abstract The primary somatosensory barrel cortex processes tactile vibrissae information, allowing rodents to actively perceive spatial and textural features of their immediate surroundings. Each whisker on the snout is individually represented in the neocortex by an anatomically identifiable ,barrel' specified by the segregated termination zones of thalamocortical axons of the ventroposterior medial nucleus, which provide the primary sensory input to the neocortex. The sensory information is subsequently processed within local synaptically connected neocortical microcircuits, which have begun to be investigated in quantitative detail. In addition to these local synaptic microcircuits, the excitatory pyramidal neurons of the barrel cortex send and receive long-range glutamatergic axonal projections to and from a wide variety of specific brain regions. Much less is known about these long-range connections and their contribution to sensory processing. Here, we review current knowledge of the long-range axonal input and output of the mouse primary somatosensory barrel cortex. Prominent reciprocal projections are found between primary somatosensory cortex and secondary somatosensory cortex, motor cortex, perirhinal cortex and thalamus. Primary somatosensory barrel cortex also projects strongly to striatum, thalamic reticular nucleus, zona incerta, anterior pretectal nucleus, superior colliculus, pons, red nucleus and spinal trigeminal brain stem nuclei. These long-range connections of the barrel cortex with other specific cortical and subcortical brain regions are likely to play a crucial role in sensorimotor integration, sensory perception and associative learning. [source]

Epidermal keratinocytes as the forefront of the sensory system

Mitsuhiro Denda
Abstract, Various sensors that respond to physical or chemical environmental factors have been identified in the peripheral nervous system. Some of them, which respond to mechanical stress, osmotic pressure, temperature and chemical stimuli (such as pH), are also expressed in epidermal keratinocytes. Neurotransmitters and their receptors, as well as receptors that regulate the neuroendocrine system of the skin, are also present in keratinocytes. Thus, broadly speaking, epidermal keratinocytes appear to be equipped with sensing systems similar to those of the peripheral and central nervous systems. It had long been considered that only nerve C-terminals in the epidermis play a role in skin surface perception. However, building on earlier work on skin receptors and new findings introduced here, we present in this review a novel hypothesis of skin sensory perception, i.e. first, keratinocytes recognize various environmental factors, and then the information is processed and conveyed to the nervous system. [source]

Pathophysiology of pruritus in atopic dermatitis: an overview

Sonja Stnder
Abstract: Pruritus is an essential feature of atopic dermatitis (AD) and the diagnosis of active AD cannot be made without the history of itching. Because of the high impact on life quality, most of the patients measure the severity of eczema by the intensity of pruritus rather than appearance of skin lesions. However, although pruritus is a cardinal symptom of AD, its mechanism and association with the cutaneous nervous system is not completely understood. Recently, a considerable progress has been achieved in clarifying the complex pathophysiology of pruritus in AD. As a cutaneous sensory perception, itch requires excitation of neuropeptide-containing free nerve endings of unmyelinated nociceptor fibers. It is well known that histamine and acetylcholine provoke itch by direct binding to ,itch receptors' and several mediators such as neuropeptides, proteases or cytokines indirectly via histamine release. Interestingly, some variations of these complex mechanisms could be demonstrated in patients with AD. This review highlights the recent knowledge of different mechanisms which may be involved in regulating pruritus in patients with AD potentially leading to new therapeutic applications for the treatment of itch in AD. [source]

Flavour formation by lactic acid bacteria and biochemical flavour profiling of cheese products

Gerrit Smit
Abstract Flavour development in dairy fermentations, most notably cheeses, results from a series of (bio)chemical processes in which the starter cultures provide the enzymes. Particularly the enzymatic degradation of proteins (caseins) leads to the formation of key-flavour components, which contribute to the sensory perception of dairy products. More specifically, caseins are degraded into peptides and amino acids and the latter are major precursors for volatile aroma compounds. In particular, the conversion of methionine, the aromatic and the branched-chain amino acids are crucial. A lot of research has focused on the degradation of caseins into peptides and free amino acids, and more recently, enzymes involved in the conversion of amino acids were identified. Most data are generated on Lactococcus lactis, which is the predominant organism in starter cultures used for cheese-making, but also Lactobacillus, Streptococcus, Propionibacterium and species used for surface ripening of cheeses are characterised in their flavour-forming capacity. In this paper, various enzymes and pathways involved in flavour formation will be highlighted and the impact of these findings for the development of industrial starter cultures will be discussed. [source]

Caenorhabditis elegans DYF-11, an orthologue of mammalian Traf3ip1/MIP-T3, is required for sensory cilia formation

GENES TO CELLS, Issue 1 2008
Hirofumi Kunitomo
Cilia and flagella play critical roles in cell motility, development and sensory perception in animals. Formation and maintenance of cilia require a conserved protein transport system called intraflagellar transport (IFT). Here, we show that Caenorhabditis elegans dyf-11 encodes an evolutionarily conserved protein required for cilium biogenesis. dyf-11 is expressed in most of the ciliated neurons and is regulated by DAF-19, a crucial transcription factor for ciliary genes in C. elegans. dyf-11 mutants exhibit stunted cilia, fluorescent dye-filling defects (Dyf) of sensory neurons, and abnormal chemotaxis (Che). Cell- and stage-specific rescue experiments indicated that DYF-11 is required for formation and maintenance of sensory cilia in cell-autonomous manner. Fluorescent protein-tagged DYF-11 localizes to cilia and moves antero- and retrogradely via IFT. Analysis of DYF-11 movement in bbs mutants further suggested that DYF-11 is likely associated with IFT complex B. Domain analysis using DYF-11 deletion constructs revealed that the coiled-coil region is required for proper localization and ciliogenesis. We further show that Traf3ip1/MIP-T3, the mammalian orthologue of DYF-11, localizes to cilia in the MDCK renal epithelial cells. [source]

Differentiation dependent expression of TRPA1 and TRPM8 channels in IMR-32 human neuroblastoma cells

Lauri M. Louhivuori
TRPA1 and TRPM8 are transient receptor potential (TRP) channels involved in sensory perception. TRPA1 is a non-selective calcium permeable channel activated by irritants and proalgesic agents. TRPM8 reacts to chemical cooling agents such as menthol. The human neuroblastoma cell line IMR-32 undergoes a remarkable differentiation in response to treatment with 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine. The cells acquire a neuronal morphology with increased expression of N-type voltage gated calcium channels and neurotransmitters. Here we show using RT-PCR, that mRNA for TRPA1 and TRPM8 are strongly upregulated in differentiating IMR-32 cells. Using whole cell patch clamp recordings, we demonstrate that activators of these channels, wasabi, allyl-isothiocyanate (AITC) and menthol activate membrane currents in differentiated cells. Calcium imaging experiments demonstrated that AITC mediated elevation of intracellular calcium levels were attenuated by ruthenium red, spermine, and HC-030031 as well as by siRNA directed against the channel. This indicates that the detected mRNA level correlate with the presence of functional channels of both types in the membrane of differentiated cells. Although the differentiated IMR-32 cells responded to cooling many of the cells showing this response did not respond to TRPA1/TRPM8 channel activators (60% and 90% for AITC and menthol respectively). Conversely many of the cells responding to these activators did not respond to cooling (30%). This suggests that these channels have also other functions than cold perception in these cells. Furthermore, our results suggest that IMR-32 cells have sensory characteristics and can be used to study native TRPA1 and TRPM8 channel function as well as developmental expression. J. Cell. Physiol. 221: 67,74, 2009. 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc [source]

Pressure ulcers: validation of two risk assessment scales

Tom Defloor PhD
Aims and objectives., To compare the predictive value of two pressure ulcer risk assessment scales (Braden and Norton) and of clinical judgement. To evaluate the impact of effective preventive measures on the predictive validity of the two risk assessment scales. Methods., Of the 1772 participating older patients, 314 were randomly selected and assigned to the ,turning' group; 1458 patients were assigned to the ,non-turning' group. Using the Braden and the Norton scale the pressure ulcer risk was scored twice weekly during a four-week period. Clinical assessment was monitored daily. The patients at risk in the ,turning' group (Braden score <17 or Norton score <12) were randomly assigned to a two-hour turning schedule or to a four-hour turning schedule in combination with a pressure-reducing mattress. The ,non-turning' group received preventive care based on the clinical judgement of the nurses. Results., The diagnostic accuracy was similar for both scales. If nurses act according to risk assessment scales, 80% of the patients would unnecessarily receive preventive measures. The use of effective preventive measures decreased the predictive value of the risk assessment scales. Nurses predicted pressure ulcer development less well than the Braden and the Norton scale. Only activity, sensory perception, skin condition and existence of old pressure ulcers were significant predictors of pressure ulcer lesions. Relevance to clinical practice., The effectiveness of the Norton and Braden scales is very low. Much needless work is done and expensive material is wrongly allocated. The use of effective preventive measures decreases the predictive value of the risk assessment scales. Although the performance of the risk assessment scales is poor, using a risk assessment tool seems to be a better alternative than relying on the clinical judgement of the nurses. [source]

Perception of Bread: A Comparison of Consumers and Trained Assessors

Margrethe Hersleth
ABSTRACT: The main objective of this study was to investigate consumers' perception of bread and to compare the used vocabulary with descriptive attributes used by a trained panel. Perceived appropriateness of breads were also studied and related to the sensory perception. Seven different types of bread were chosen for the study. The breads were presented to 30 consumers, and the repertory grid method was used to obtain information about sensory perception and appropriateness of use. The breads were also presented to a trained sensory panel performing sensory profiling. Multivariate analyses of the data showed that the latent structure in consumers' perception of a selection of breads was similar to the latent structure in a trained panel's perception of the same breads. For verbal description of the texture, the 2 panels used many identical words. Moreover, multivariate analyses revealed the relationship between consumers' perception of the breads and the appropriateness of use. [source]

The effect of tooth clenching on the sensory and pain perception in the oro-facial region of symptom-free men and women

Summary, The aim of this study was (i) to examine the effect of light tooth contact as in diurnal tooth clenching on the tactile detection threshold (TDT), the filament-prick pain detection threshold (FPT) and the pressure pain threshold (PPT) in the oro-facial region and (ii) to examine the possible gender difference in this effect on the tactile and pain perception. Twenty healthy volunteers participated. The TDT and the FPT were measured by means of Semmes-Weinstein monofilaments, on the cheek skin (CS) overlying the masseter muscles (MM) and on the skin overlying the palm side of the thenar skin (TS). The PPT was measured at the central part of the MM using a pressure algometer. Each parameter was measured before and after keeping light tooth contact for 5 min (session 1) and after keeping the jaw relaxed for 5 min (session 2) as a control. Although there were no significant session effects on any of the parameters, there were significant effects of experimental condition on the TDT in both men and women (P < 0001). Men had a significant higher FPT of the left CS (P < 005) and TS (P < 001) and a significant higher PPT of the MM than women (P < 0001). These results illustrate that sensitivity to pain (FPT, PPT) was higher in women than in men. Although there were no significant gender differences in habituation of sensory perception, the increase of TDT after clenching/no clenching was larger in women, which warrants further study. [source]


ABSTRACT A trained panel developed rating scales for crispness, crunchiness and crackliness for dry and wet foods based on the auditory perception of selected foods. The newly developed scales were then evaluated by 40 untrained panelists and the sound perception of standard foods was assessed through the analysis of the root mean square (RMS) of the 5-s audio waveforms and multidimensional scaling (MDS). The RMS was highly correlated to auditory sensory perception of crispness (r = 0.83 and 0.96), crunchiness (r = 0.99 and 0.99) and crackliness (r = 0.88 and 0.96) for dry and wet foods, respectively. MDS technique applied for the 40 untrained panelists was instructive in assessing auditory textural differences of nave panelists and a useful statistical instrument to graphically validate selected scales. Auditory perception of the selected foods were rated similarly using standard auditory texture scales for crispness, crunchiness and crackliness developed by the trained panel (oral evaluation) and MDS results from the untrained panel (recordings). PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS Crispness, crunchiness and crackliness are not only important and useful descriptors of food texture, but are also desirable textural qualities in many foods. The lack of consistency in the procedures used for the evaluation of crunchy, crispy and crackly in sensory studies often results in confusion when training expert panels. Research will benefit textural studies through an improvement of consistent textural definitions and development of standard scales and evaluation techniques. The crispness, crunchiness and crackliness scales developed and applied in the current study represent a new potential standard frame of reference that may be used for training panelists in texture parameters related to food auditory perception. The scales may be considered illustrations demonstrating full and practical ranges for each texture attribute with regard to analyzing auditory parameters of foods and effective objective tools for assessing panelists in descriptive analysis. [source]


ABSTRACT The mechanism relating sensory perception of brittle food foams to their mechanical and acoustic properties during crushing was investigated. Cornstarch was extruded with four levels of whey protein isolate (0, 6, 12 and 18%) and two levels of in-barrel moisture (23 and 27%). Hardness, fracturability and roughness of mass were three main sensory attributes that varied substantially between products. High correlations (r = 0.841,0.998) were observed between sensory attributes and instrumentally determined mechanical properties, including crushing force (11.2,57.9 N) and crispness work (4.6,75.8 Nmm). Based on acoustic data obtained during instrumental crushing, time-domain signal processing and a novel voice recognition technique utilizing frequency spectrograms were successfully employed for understanding the differences in the sensory properties of various products. Microstructure features, including average cell diameter (1.00,2.94 mm), average wall thickness (0.04,0.27 mm) and cell number density (7,193 cell/cm3), were characterized noninvasively using X-ray microtomography, and proved to be critical in relating sensory perception of the cellular extrudates to their mechanical,acoustic signatures. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS The sensory perception of crispy and crunchy food products is primarily a function of their mechanical response and emission of sounds during fracture. The current study was focused on understanding these relationships in the context of brittle extruded foods. The mechanical,acoustic techniques outlined in this study have the potential of reducing the time, costs and subjectivity involved in evaluation of new foods by human panels, and can be a useful tool in the overall product development cycle. These techniques need not be limited only to food systems, as properties of any rigid, fracturable material can be characterized based on its mechanical,acoustic signature. [source]

Comparative genomics and the study of evolution by natural selection

Abstract Genomics profoundly affects most areas of biology, including ecology and evolutionary biology. By examining genome sequences from multiple species, comparative genomics offers new insight into genome evolution and the way natural selection moulds DNA sequence evolution. Functional divergence, as manifested in the accumulation of nonsynonymous substitutions in protein-coding genes, differs among lineages in a manner seemingly related to population size. For example, the ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitution (dN/dS) is higher in apes than in rodents, compatible with Ohta's nearly neutral theory of molecular evolution, which suggests that the fixation of slightly deleterious mutations contributes to protein evolution at an extent negatively correlated with effective population size. While this supports the idea that functional evolution is not necessarily adaptive, comparative genomics is uncovering a role for positive Darwinian selection in 10,40% of all genes in different lineages, estimates that are likely to increase when the addition of more genomes gives increased power. Again, population size seems to matter also in this context, with a higher proportion of fixed amino acid changes representing advantageous mutations in large populations. Genes that are particularly prone to be driven by positive selection include those involved with reproduction, immune response, sensory perception and apoptosis. Genetic innovations are also frequently obtained by the gain or loss of complete gene sequences. Moreover, it is increasingly realized, from comparative genomics, that purifying selection conserves much more than just the protein-coding part of the genome, and this points at an important role for regulatory elements in trait evolution. Finally, genome sequencing using outbred or multiple individuals has provided a wealth of polymorphism data that gives information on population history, demography and marker evolution. [source]


PAIN MEDICINE, Issue 2 2002
Article first published online: 4 JUL 200
Jahangir Maleki, Rollin M. Gallagher, Pain Medicine and Rehabilitation Center, MCP/Hahnemann School of Medicine Introduction: Functional MRI and PET studies of cortical pain processing indicate segregated pain pathways above the thalamus. Although experimental pain may result in multiple areas of altered cortical activity, it is postulated that thalamic pain fibers known as the lateral system, projecting to sensory cortex, serve to localize pain, whereas medial pathways projecting to limbic cortex, process affective aspects of pain. Case Study: A 27 y/o female, with left upper extremity pain and severe allodynia from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Type I (CRPS I / RSD), after receiving intra-pleural bupivacaine blocks developed an ipsilateral focal-onset secondary generalized tonic clonic seizure. This was followed by one hour of post-ictal confusion. Simultaneously she developed a dense left-sided motor and sensory deficit (Todd's palsy) with a motor deficit resolving in one day whereas a sensory deficit lasted 2 days. Throughout the duration of the sensory deficit she denied any left arm pain, although she continued to report the same intensity of pain, but now localized to her epigastric region. Interestingly, despite the lack of sensory perception on the left side, palpation of her left arm resulted in increased epigastric pain and suffering. Discussion: This case indicates a bifurcation of the pain pathway between the thalamus and cortex. Due to focal seizure activity, the sensory cortex (i.e. lateral system) was transiently rendered dysfunctional, during which time the continued presence of pain and allodynia without appropriate localization likely resulted from pain conduction, from the thalamus to functional limbic structures such as Cingulum (i.e. via the medial fibre system). Conclusion: This case report strongly supports the hypothesis of medial and lateral pain conducting fibers branching at the level of thalamus with medial sub-serving the emotional aspects of pain by projection to limbic cortex, whereas lateral fibres project to sensory cortex, primarily serving a localizing function. [source]

Characterization of two melanin-concentrating hormone genes in zebrafish reveals evolutionary and physiological links with the mammalian MCH system

Jennifer R. Berman
Abstract Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) regulates feeding and complex behaviors in mammals and pigmentation in fish. The relationship between fish and mammalian MCH systems is not well understood. Here, we identify and characterize two MCH genes in zebrafish, Pmch1 and Pmch2. Whereas Pmch1 and its corresponding MCH1 peptide resemble MCH found in other fish, the zebrafish Pmch2 gene and MCH2 peptide share genomic structure, synteny, and high peptide sequence homology with mammalian MCH. Zebrafish Pmch genes are expressed in closely associated but non-overlapping neurons within the hypothalamus, and MCH2 neurons send numerous projections to multiple MCH receptor-rich targets with presumed roles in sensory perception, learning and memory, arousal, and homeostatic regulation. Preliminary functional analysis showed that whereas changes in zebrafish Pmch1 expression correlate with pigmentation changes, the number of MCH2-expressing neurons increases in response to chronic food deprivation. These findings demonstrate that zebrafish MCH2 is the putative structural and functional ortholog of mammalian MCH and help elucidate the nature of MCH evolution among vertebrates. J. Comp. Neurol. 517:695,710, 2009. 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Return to Figuration: W,adis,aw Strzemi,ski and the move from Idealism

ART HISTORY, Issue 1 2001
Esther Levinger
Contrary to the homogeneous flat canvases of Unism, in which W,adis,aw Strzemin,ski attempted to surpass the incidents and vagaries of sensory perception, in the nature-inspired works he sought to represent a physiologically accurate vision. His purpose was to present humankind in the role of an active agent who formed the world and its concepts through observation and actual labour. An important contribution by Strzemi,ski to modern thought was therefore his introduction of the corporeal subject into the theory of art, a subject who perceived with the mechanics of his or her physiological eye. The return to figuration never signalled a distressing regression or a desperate act, but a fresh beginning and a mark of optimism: faith in the human capacity to change the world and faith in the transforming potential of human sight. [source]

Investigation of the Relationship Between Stimulus Parameters and a Human Muscle Contraction Force During Stimulation of the Gastrocnemius Muscle

Piotr Kaczmarek
Abstract The article presents the results of investigations on the influence of biphasic stimulus parameters such as duration and stimulus interphase interval (IPI) on a gastrocnemius muscle contraction force. Seven healthy volunteers participated in this experiment, and 24 different stimuli patterns were tested. Special attention was paid to the comfort level of a sensory perception while the electrostimulation was applied. During the test, an optimal stimulus pattern evoking contraction at the level over 15% maximum voluntary contraction force and preserving a good comfort perception reported by all of the participants was investigated. It was found that bursts of pulses with width 175 s and the IPI from 50 to 1000 s satisfied these criteria. Moreover, it was observed that the increase of the IPI duration generated a significantly stronger contraction force in comparison with the stimulation with the standard biphasic pulses (IPI = 0 s) having the same amplitude, frequency, and pulse duration. This shows that the modulation of the IPI might be a potentially useful support for the standard force-control methods and may find an application in neuromuscular electrical stimulation systems. [source]

Effect of polyphenols on the perception of key aroma compounds from Sauvignon Blanc wine

Abstract Background and Aims:, Sensory wine research has mainly focused on the role of volatile compounds and their contribution to the aroma profile. Wines also contain polyphenolic compounds, which are not volatile. This research begins to investigate the interactions of volatile and non-volatile wine compounds and the consequential effects on sensory perception of aroma. Methods and Results:, Trained panellists of this study measured the perception of four aroma compounds (isobutyl methoxypyrazine, 3-mercaptohexanol, 3-mercaptohexanol acetate and ethyl decanoate) in wine. Panellists assessed the four compounds in combinations with three polyphenols (catechin, caffeic acid and quercetin) commonly found in white wine. The perception of isobutyl methoxypyrazine, 3-mercaptohexanol and ethyl decanoate was largely suppressed by the added polyphenols, while the perception of 3-mercaptohexanol was accentuated with the addition of caffeic acid. Of the three polyphenols, only catechin had a slight effect of accentuating the mercaptohexanol acetate perception. Conclusions:, Results showed each polyphenol had a unique effect when blended with a specific aroma compound, either suppressing, accentuating or showing little effect on the perception of the aroma compounds. Significance of the Study:, Understanding these interactions can assist winemakers in managing polyphenol levels to optimize selected volatile compounds to achieve desirable aroma profiles. [source]

The behaviour and ecology of the zebrafish, Danio rerio

Rowena Spence
Abstract The zebrafish Danio rerio, is an important model organism in developmental genetics, neurophysiology and biomedicine, but little is known about its natural ecology and behaviour. It is a small, shoaling cyprinid, native to the flood-plains of the Indian subcontinent, where it is found in shallow, slow-flowing waters. Zebrafish are group spawners and egg scatterers, although females are choosy with respect to sites for oviposition and males defend territories around such sites. Laboratory studies of zebrafish behaviour have encompassed shoaling, foraging, reproduction, sensory perception and learning. These studies are reviewed in relation to the suitability of the zebrafish as a model for studies on cognition and learning, development, behavioural and evolutionary ecology, and behavioural genetics. [source]

Structure, Orientation and Finite Element Analysis of the Tail Club of Mamenchisaurus hochuanensis

Abstract: The structure and orientation of the posterior extremity (tail club) of the caudal vertebrae of Mamenchisaurus hochuanensis Young and Chao, 1972 from the Upper Jurassic Shangshaximiao Formation has been analyzed to determine the tail club function using Finite Element Analysis. Of the four caudal vertebrae composing the tail club, the second largest (C"1") was probably the most proximal, and is fixed with the preceding sequence of the caudal vertebrae, whereas the smallest (C"4") is free and forms the termination of the tail club. Our analysis also suggests that the tail club is more efficient in lateral swinging rather than up-and-down motion, and that the best region for the tail club to impact is at the spine of the largest of the four caudals (C"2"), with a maximum load for impact at about 450 N. The tail club of Mamenchisaurus hochuanensis probably also had limitations as a defense weapon and was more possibly a sensory organ to improve nerve conduction velocity to enhance the capacity for sensory perception of its surroundings. [source]