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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Biological Sciences
Molecular and biochemical characterization of phospholipase D in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L) seedlings.

Molecular and biochemical characterization of phospholipase D in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L) seedlings.

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Date: May 2005
Creator: McHugh, John
Description: N-Acylethanolamines (NAEs) are enriched in seed-derived tissues and are believed to be formed from the membrane phospholipid, N-acylphosphatidylethanolamine (NAPE) via the action of phospholipase D (PLD). In an effort to identify a functional NAPE-PLD in cotton seeds and seedlings, we have screened a cotton seedling cDNA (cotyledon mRNA from 48 h dark grown seedlings) library with a 1.2 kb tobacco partial cDNA fragment encoding the middle third of a putative PLDβ/γ (genbank accession, AF195614) isoform. Six plaques were isolated from the Uni-ZAP lambda library, excised as pBluescript SK(-) phagemids and subjected to nucleotide sequence analysis. Alignment of derived sequences with Arabidopsis PLD family members indicated that the cDNAs represent six different PLD gene products -three putative PLD β isoforms and three putative PLD δ isoforms. The PLD β isoforms, designated Ghpldβ1a, GHpldβ1b and a truncated Ghpldβ1b isoform. Both the full-length PLD β proteins contained characteristic HKxxxxD catalytic domains, a PC-binding domain, a PIP2-binding domain and a C2 domain. In addition both cotton PLD β isoforms had a N-terminal "SPQY" rich domain which appeared to be unique to these PLDs. The three PLD δ isoforms, designated Ghpldδ1a, Ghpldδ1b and Ghpldδ1b-2 encode full-length PLDδ proteins, and like the above PLDs, contained the ...
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The stonefly genus Isogenoides Klapálek (Plecoptera: Perlodidae) of North America: Systematics, behavior and ecology.

The stonefly genus Isogenoides Klapálek (Plecoptera: Perlodidae) of North America: Systematics, behavior and ecology.

Date: May 2005
Creator: Sandberg, John Burton
Description: The stonefly genus Isogenoides is revised following a holomorphological approach utilizing traditional morphology and behavioral lines of evidence. Species keys are provided for all life stages. One species, I. krumholzi (Ricker) is considered a synonym of I. doratus (Frison). Detailed species descriptions are provided for males, females, nymphs and ova. Distributions are updated utilizing all known published accounts and materials examined. The vibrational communication (drumming) behavior is reported for males and all but one species for females. The signals were species-specific and ranged in complexity from ancestral sequenced duets to derived grouped exchanges. I. olivaceus is least specialized, having mostly sequenced duets, and I. zionensis most specialized, displaying ancestral sequenced, derived grouped and complex derived exchanges containing both sequenced and grouped elements. Laboratory egg incubation experiments over a 2-4 year period show that Isogenoides has a great capacity for extended, sometimes-asynchronous diapause and hatching. The eggs of six species were incubated at a single, ca. simulated San Miguel River, Colorado, seasonal temperature regime. Direct hatch within two weeks occurred only for I. zionensis (Leopard Creek, Colorado) with small numbers hatching again after one, two, and four years. Eggs of I. doratus and I. varians hatched after an over summer, 3-5 ...
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The structure and function of troponin T upon metal ion binding and the detection of nucleic acid sequence variations.

The structure and function of troponin T upon metal ion binding and the detection of nucleic acid sequence variations.

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Date: May 2005
Creator: Zhang, Zhiling
Description: Numerous troponin T (TnT) isoforms are generated by alternative RNA splicing primarily in its NH2-terminal hypervariable region, but the functions of these isoforms are not completely understood. In this dissertation work, calcium and terbium binding behavior of several forms of TnT were investigated by spectroscopic and radioactive techniques. Chicken breast muscle TnT binds calcium and terbium through its NH2-terminal Tx motif (HEEAH)n with high affinity (10-6 mM) and fast on-rate (106 - 107 M-1 s-1). Chicken leg muscle TnT and a human cardiac TnT NH2-terminal fragment, which both lack the Tx motif on their NH2-terminal regions, do not have affinities for calcium in the physiological range. Computational predictions on TnT N47 suggest that the TnT NH2-terminal region might fold into an elongated structure with at least one high affinity metal ion binding pocket comprised primarily of the Tx motif sequence and several lower affinity binding sites. In addition, calcium binding to TnT N47 might alter its conformation and flexibility. Luminescence resonance energy transfer measurements and other experimental observations are consistent with the computational predictions suggesting the computational simulated atomic model is reasonable. TnT mutations are responsible for 15% of familiar hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHC) cases with a phenotype of relatively mild ...
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Assessing Outcomes of a Recycling Education and Service Program within an Elementary School

Assessing Outcomes of a Recycling Education and Service Program within an Elementary School

Date: August 2005
Creator: Cunningham-Scott, Carey Beth
Description: During the spring 2004 a pilot school recycling program was implemented within Robert E. Lee Elementary. The primary goal of the program was to determine how recycling education in the school would affect curbside recycling rates within the surrounding community. The program was a cooperative effort between the University of North Texas, City of Denton Solid Waste Department and Keep Denton Beautiful. Throughout the first months of the study during the spring 2004, an increase in curbside recycling within the Robert E. Lee Elementary attendance zone was observed, with a dramatic decrease in participation over the summer and a rapid increase once again during the second full semester of the study. In a survey conducted with 3rd and 5th grade students at the pilot project school, most students expressed positive attitudes about recycling. Students whose survey responses indicated a high level of knowledge about what could be recycled were 37% more likely to claim to recycle regularly, than those students that scored low on the knowledge portion of the survey. Although the total amount of waste generation (recyclable and non-recyclable) at Robert E. Lee Elementary did not decrease during the study, the campus was able to divert recyclable material from ...
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Effects on Survival, Reproduction and Growth of Ceriodaphnia dubia following Single Episodic Exposure to Copper or Cadmium

Effects on Survival, Reproduction and Growth of Ceriodaphnia dubia following Single Episodic Exposure to Copper or Cadmium

Date: August 2005
Creator: Turner, Philip K.
Description: Effects of episodic exposures have gained attention as the regulatory focus of the Clean Water Act has shifted away from continuous-flow effluents. Standardized laboratory toxicity tests require that exposure be held constant. However, this approach may not accurately predict organism responses in the field following episodic exposures such as those associated with rain-driven runoff events or accidental pollutant discharge. Using a modified version of the 7-day short-term chronic test recommended by the US Environmental Protection Agency, Ceriodaphnia dubia were exposed to copper or cadmium for durations ranging from 1 minute to 24 hours. In addition, adult reproductive recovery and effects on second generation individuals was assessed following select copper exposures. Finally, cadmium exposures were compared in reconstituted hard water (RHW) and municipal treated wastewater effluent (TWE). Following exposure, organisms were transferred to clean RHW or TWE and maintained for the remainder of the test. No- and lowest observed effect concentrations (NO- and LOECs) increased logarithmically with respect to logarithmic decreases in duration regardless of metal, endpoint or water type. Effective concentrations of cadmium however, were usually higher than those of copper, especially in TWE. LOECs for C. dubia survival following 24-hour and 5-minute exposures to copper were 116 and 417 ...
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Genetic Modification of Fatty Acid Profiles in Cotton

Genetic Modification of Fatty Acid Profiles in Cotton

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Date: August 2005
Creator: Rommel, Amy A.
Description: The industrial uses of cottonseed oil are limited by its fatty acid composition. Genetic modification of cotton lipid profiles using seed-specific promoters could allow cotton growers to produce valuable new oils in the seed without adverse effects on fiber quality and yield, therefore making this crop more commercially profitable. Transgenic cotton callus harboring a diverged fatty acid desaturase gene (FADX) from Momordica charantia was characterized for production of alpha-eleostearic acid (conjugated double bonds: 18:3 D9 cis, 11 trans, 13 trans), not normally found in cotton. Gas chromatography (GC) in conjunction with mass spectrometry (MS) confirmed production of alpha-eleostearic acid in the transgenic cotton tissues. A second series of transformation experiments introduced the cotton fatty acid thioesterase B (FATB) cDNA, fused to the seed-specific oleosin promoter into cotton to promote the over-expression of FATB, to generate cotton with increased palmitate in the cottonseed. PCR amplification, as well as fatty acid analysis by gas chromatography, confirmed introduction of the FATB cDNA in transgenic tissues. Collectively, these results demonstrate the feasibility of manipulating the fatty acid composition in cotton via transgenic approaches and form the basis for continued efforts to create novel oils in cottonseed.
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Mouse cortical cholinergic neurons: Ontogeny of phenotypes in vivo and in vitro.

Mouse cortical cholinergic neurons: Ontogeny of phenotypes in vivo and in vitro.

Date: August 2005
Creator: Coiculescu, Olivia Elena
Description: The development of cholinergic neurons in mouse frontal cortex was studied both in vivo and in vitro by immunocytochemistry with an antibody to choline acetyltransferase (ChAT), the enzyme responsible for acetylcholine synthesis. While cortical cholinergic neurons have previously been characterized in rat cortex, up until very recently, intrinsic cortical cholinergic neurons were considered to be absent in mouse, and little is known about their development or phenotypic characteristics. The present study found no ChAT-positive neurons in mouse frontal cortex on postnatal day 0 (P0, the day of birth). On P7 there were few, faintly stained, ChAT-positive neurons. The numerical density of ChAT-positive neurons increased substantially with age, from none on P0, to 9.2 + 1.4 on P7, to 14.8 + 0.9 on P16, and 41.6 + 3.9 in adulthood. Considering that the numerical density of total neurons decreases during this postnatal period, the data represent a marked developmental increase in the percentage of cholinergic neurons. The development of cholinergic neurons showed very similar timelines in rat and mouse frontal cortex. Cultures prepared from mouse frontal cortex on embryonic day 16 were maintained for 25, 76, or 100 days in vitro (div). The percentage of ChAT-positive neurons was considerably higher than ...
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Mutation of Polaris, an Intraflagellar Transport Protein, Shortens Neuronal Cilia

Mutation of Polaris, an Intraflagellar Transport Protein, Shortens Neuronal Cilia

Date: August 2005
Creator: Mahato, Deependra
Description: Primary cilia are non-motile organelles having 9+0 microtubules that project from the basal body of the cell. While the main purpose of motile cilia in mammalian cells is to move fluid or mucus over the cell surface, the purpose of primary cilia has remained elusive for the most part. Primary cilia are shortened in the kidney tubules of Tg737orpk mice, which have polycystic kidney disease due to ciliary defects. The product of the Tg737 gene is polaris, which is directly involved in a microtubule-dependent transport process called intraflagellar transport (IFT). In order to determine the importance of polaris in the development of neuronal cilia, cilium length and numerical density of cilia were quantitatively assessed in six different brain regions on postnatal days 14 and 31 in Tg737orpk mutant and wildtype mice. Our results indicate that the polaris mutation leads to shortening of cilia as well as decreased percentage of ciliated neurons in all brain regions that were quantitatively assessed. Maintainance of cilia was especially affected in the ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus. Furthermore, the polaris mutation curtailed cilium length more severely on postnatal day 31 than postnatal day 14. These data suggests that even after ciliogenesis, intraflagellar transport is necessary ...
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Temperature tolerances and predation susceptibilities of transgenic and wildtype zebra danios, Danio rerio.

Temperature tolerances and predation susceptibilities of transgenic and wildtype zebra danios, Danio rerio.

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Date: August 2005
Creator: Cortemeglia, Cheryl
Description: Both the upper and lower temperature tolerances of red fluorescent protein transgenic zebra danios and wildtype zebra danios, Danio rerio, were significantly different via two different methods; however, all differences are small (< 1°C) and probably not ecologically important. The U.S. geographic distributions of both transgenic and wildtype zebra danios will not be restricted by their upper thermal tolerances, but will be limited to the southern and western portions of the U.S. by their lower thermal tolerances. Largemouth bass did not preferentially prey upon transgenic zebra danios compared to wildtype danios or wildtypes relative to a native fish. If transgenic or wildtype zebra danios are released into southern or western U.S. waters, it is possible they could be eliminated by predation.
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Analysis of the One-Horned Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros Unicornis) Habitat in the Royal Chitwan National Park, Nepal.

Analysis of the One-Horned Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros Unicornis) Habitat in the Royal Chitwan National Park, Nepal.

Date: December 2005
Creator: Thapa, Vivek
Description: This study analyzes the remaining suitable habitat of the one-horned rhinoceros, Rhinoceros unicornis, in Royal Chitwan National Park of Nepal. An April 2003 Landsat image was classified into eight land cover types: wetland, sand, water, mixed forest, sal forest, agriculture, settlement, and grassland. This image was converted into habitat suitability maps using cover, food, and water. The rhinoceros prefers grassland habitat with oxbow lakes and closed canopy during the monsoon season. Nominal values of five parameters were used to create a map of habitat suitability index. The map was categorized into four habitat classes: highly unsuitable, unsuitable, moderately suitable habitat, and suitable. Landscape metrics, patch metrics and class metrics associated with habitat were determined through the use of FRAGSTATS.
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