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1.  Editorial 
As a new year begins, it is a good time to review developments of the past twelve months and to announce some changes in GSE for 2007. Since November 2005, GSE has received 122 new manuscripts, accepted 42 articles (of which 19 were submitted before November 2005) and still has 32 manuscripts in evaluation. Thus the number of submitted manuscripts is constantly increasing while the number of published articles is maintained at around 40 per year. Published articles originate from 15 countries with Spain leading (10), followed by the USA (5), Australia, France and Germany (4 each), UK (3), China, Denmark and Finland (2 each) and finally, Brazil, Canada, Greece, Japan, Norway and Slovenia. Of these 42 published papers, 19 deal with methodologies of quantitative genetics and their applications to animal selection and characterization, six address genetic diversity of populations and breeds and seven fall in the field of molecular genetics. These figures clearly show that GSE is attractive to the animal quantitative genetics community and has acquired a strong experience and reputation in this domain.
To answer this increasing demand, we have asked two new associate editors to join our editorial panel and are pleased that they have agreed: Denis Couvet from the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle (France) specialized in conservation biology and population genetics and Frédéric Farnir from the University of Liège (Belgium) whose research interests focus on the genetic and functional study of QTL involved in agricultural traits.
In this editorial note, we also wish to inform you about our misfortune with the calculation of the 2005 Impact Factor published in June 2006 in the "Journal of Citation Reports" by Thompson Scientific. Based on our calculations, the published 2005 IF 1.62 turned out to be erroneous and in disfavour of GSE, which Thompson Scientific has acknowledged. The true 2005 IF is 1.783 and thus, GSE occupies the 5th position in the section "Agriculture, Dairy & Animal Science" and the 82nd in the section "Genetics & Heredity". Corrections in JCR have been done in October 2006.
Finally, GSE and EDP Sciences wish to keep up with the rapid changes of publication systems, i.e. the advent of "Open Access" publishing, to make scientific research widely and freely available. Thus, we are happy to announce that as a first step in this direction, GSE now gives the possibility to authors to choose how they want their paper to be published by offering the "Open Choice" option. With this option, authors can have their articles accepted for publication made available to all interested readers (subscribers or non-subscribers) as soon as they are on-line in exchange of a basic fee, i.e. 550 euros for papers published in 2007 (without VAT).
With all this news, we offer the collaborators, authors and readers of GSE our season greetings and best wishes for a successful and productive New Year 2007.
PMCID: PMC3400394
2.  Editorial to the special issue Neuronus 
Advances in Cognitive Psychology  2013;9(4):156-159.
Did you visit the Neuronus conferences in the years 2012 and 2013 in Kraków? If not, then you certainly should have a close examination of this special issue including this introduction to at least have a glimpse of an idea of the highly interesting topics in the field of cognitive neuroscience that were presented at these conferences. If you were there, it is for sure a good choice to focus on this special issue as well, first to refresh your minds (we know our memories are far from perfect), but especially to see what happened with research of the presenters at these conferences.
PMCID: PMC3902697  PMID: 24605174
right ear advantage; attention; EEG; beta band; visual word form area; disorders of consciousness; functional connectivity; default mode network; DTI; structural connectivity; MUC model; N400; neural oscillations; schizophrenia; insight; sleep; social cognition; lateralized power spectra; motion-based Simon effect; reaction time distribution; Adolf Beck
3.  A new editorial board for a new editorial period 
PMCID: PMC406411  PMID: 15107134
4.  An editorial on editorials 
PMCID: PMC134177  PMID: 12403740
9.  Ribonucleotides 
It has normally been assumed that ribonucleotides arose on the early Earth through a process in which ribose, the nucleobases, and phosphate became conjoined. However, under plausible prebiotic conditions, condensation of nucleobases with ribose to give β-ribonucleosides is fraught with difficulties. The reaction with purine nucleobases is low-yielding and the reaction with the canonical pyrimidine nucleobases does not work at all. The reasons for these difficulties are considered and an alternative high-yielding synthesis of pyrimidine nucleotides is discussed. Fitting the new synthesis to a plausible geochemical scenario is a remaining challenge but the prospects appear good. Discovery of an improved method of purine synthesis, and an efficient means of stringing activated nucleotides together, will provide underpinning support to those theories that posit a central role for RNA in the origins of life.
Ribonucleotides required for RNA must have formed de novo on the early Earth. Condensation of nucleobases with ribose is problematic, however, and an alternative pyrimidine ribonucleotide synthesis reaction may have occurred.
PMCID: PMC2845210  PMID: 20452951
10.  Ordovician ash geochemistry and the establishment of land plants 
The colonization of the terrestrial environment by land plants transformed the planetary surface and its biota, and shifted the balance of Earth’s biomass from the subsurface towards the surface. However there was a long delay between the formation of palaeosols (soils) on the land surface and the key stage of plant colonization. The record of palaeosols, and their colonization by fungi and lichens extends well back into the Precambrian. While these early soils provided a potential substrate, they were generally leached of nutrients as part of the weathering process. In contrast, volcanic ash falls provide a geochemically favourable substrate that is both nutrient-rich and has high water retention, making them good hosts to land plants. An anomalously extensive system of volcanic arcs generated unprecedented volumes of lava and volcanic ash (tuff) during the Ordovician. The earliest, mid-Ordovician, records of plant spores coincide with these widespread volcanic deposits, suggesting the possibility of a genetic relationship. The ash constituted a global environment of nutrient-laden, water-saturated soil that could be exploited to maximum advantage by the evolving anchoring systems of land plants. The rapid and pervasive inoculation of modern volcanic ash by plant spores, and symbiotic nitrogen-fixing fungi, suggests that the Ordovician ash must have received a substantial load of the earliest spores and their chemistry favoured plant development. In particular, high phosphorus levels in ash were favourable to plant growth. This may have allowed photosynthesizers to diversify and enlarge, and transform the surface of the planet.
PMCID: PMC3485180  PMID: 22925460
Ash geochemistry; Tuff; Land plants; Chemical index of alteration; Phosphorus; Biomass; Ordovician
11.  Samarium (III) Selective Membrane Sensor Based on Tin (IV) Boratophosphate 
Sensors (Basel, Switzerland)  2004;4(8):125-135.
A number of Sm (III) selective membranes of varying compositions using tin (IV) boratophosphate as electroactive material were prepared. Polyvinyl chloride, polystyrene and epoxy resin were used as binding materials. Membrane having composition of 40% exchanger and 60% epoxy resin exhibited best performance. This membrane worked well over a wide concentration range of 1×10-5M to 1×10-1 M of samarium ions with a Super-Nernstian slope of 40 mV/decade. It has a fast response time of less than 10 seconds and can be used for at least six months without any considerable divergence in potentials. The proposed sensor revealed good selectivities with respect to alkali, alkaline earth, some transition and rare earth metal ions and can be used in the pH range of 4.0-10.0. It was used as an indicator electrode in the potentiometric titration of Sm (III) ions against EDTA. Effect of internal solution was studied and the electrode was successfully used in non-aqueous media, too.
PMCID: PMC3954063
Inorganic ion exchanger; ISE; Sm (III); FIM; potentiometric titration
12.  Earthing the Human Body Influences Physiologic Processes 
This study was designed to answer the question: Does the contact of the human organism with the Earth via a copper conductor affect physiologic processes?
Subjects and experiments
Five (5) experiments are presented: experiment 1—effect of earthing on calcium–phosphate homeostasis and serum concentrations of iron (N = 84 participants); experiment 2—effect of earthing on serum concentrations of electrolytes (N = 28); experiment 3—effect of earthing on thyroid function (N = 12); experiment 4—effect of earthing on glucose concentration (N = 12); experiment 5—effect of earthing on immune response to vaccine (N = 32). Subjects were divided into two groups. One (1) group of people was earthed, while the second group remained without contact with the Earth. Blood and urine samples were examined.
Earthing of an electrically insulated human organism during night rest causes lowering of serum concentrations of iron, ionized calcium, inorganic phosphorus, and reduction of renal excretion of calcium and phosphorus. Earthing during night rest decreases free tri-iodothyronine and increases free thyroxine and thyroid-stimulating hormone. The continuous earthing of the human body decreases blood glucose in patients with diabetes. Earthing decreases sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, total protein, and albumin concentrations while the levels of transferrin, ferritin, and globulins α1, α2, β, and γ increase. These results are statistically significant.
Earthing the human body influences human physiologic processes. This influence is observed during night relaxation and during physical activity. Effect of the earthing on calcium–phosphate homeostasis is the opposite of that which occurs in states of weightlessness. It also increases the activity of catabolic processes. It may be the primary factor regulating endocrine and nervous systems.
PMCID: PMC3154031  PMID: 21469913
13.  Earth’s Earliest Atmospheres 
Earth is the one known example of an inhabited planet and to current knowledge the likeliest site of the one known origin of life. Here we discuss the origin of Earth’s atmosphere and ocean and some of the environmental conditions of the early Earth as they may relate to the origin of life. A key punctuating event in the narrative is the Moon-forming impact, partly because it made Earth for a short time absolutely uninhabitable, and partly because it sets the boundary conditions for Earth’s subsequent evolution. If life began on Earth, as opposed to having migrated here, it would have done so after the Moon-forming impact. What took place before the Moon formed determined the bulk properties of the Earth and probably determined the overall compositions and sizes of its atmospheres and oceans. What took place afterward animated these materials. One interesting consequence of the Moon-forming impact is that the mantle is devolatized, so that the volatiles subsequently fell out in a kind of condensation sequence. This ensures that the volatiles were concentrated toward the surface so that, for example, the oceans were likely salty from the start. We also point out that an atmosphere generated by impact degassing would tend to have a composition reflective of the impacting bodies (rather than the mantle), and these are almost without exception strongly reducing and volatile-rich. A consequence is that, although CO- or methane-rich atmospheres are not necessarily stable as steady states, they are quite likely to have existed as long-lived transients, many times. With CO comes abundant chemical energy in a metastable package, and with methane comes hydrogen cyanide and ammonia as important albeit less abundant gases.
Life probably arose on Earth after the moon-forming impact. It and subsequent impacts probably created transient reducing methane- or CO-rich atmospheres that provided abundant chemical energy.
PMCID: PMC2944365  PMID: 20573713
14.  Production of Rhizobium Inoculants for Lupinus nootkatensis on Nutrient-Supplemented Pumice 
Applied and Environmental Microbiology  1993;59(11):3666-3668.
The use of the legume Lupinus nootkatensis as a pioneer plant to fight soil erosion and to reclaim eroded soils in Iceland has been under development for a few years. Production of a robust, low-cost bacterial inoculant was therefore a prerequisite for the extended use of this plant. Volcanic pumice is a naturally expanded mineral which is available in vast amounts in Iceland. It was tested as a carrier for solid fermentation of Rhizobium lupini. Nutrient-supplemented pumice containing a small percentage of peat and diatomaceous earth and kept in sterile plastic bags promoted good growth of the bacteria. Viable-colony counts remained stable at 108 to 109/g for at least 35 weeks when the carrier was stored at 22°C. The pumice-based inoculant had good storage and handling properties and could be mixed directly with the seeds during the sowing process. When seeds of L. nootkatensis were sown manually into nutrient-poor eroded sandy soils, about 56% of the first-year plants were successfully nodulated.
PMCID: PMC182514  PMID: 16349083
15.  Editorial 
Molecular Medicine  2013;19(1):303.
PMCID: PMC3883965
16.  Editorial Euthanasia and assisted suicide: The physician's role 
The Linacre Quarterly  2013;80(2):99-102.
PMCID: PMC4018012
17.  Editorial 
Journal of Biology  2004;3(1):1.
PMCID: PMC442163
18.  Editorial 
Journal of Biology  2003;2(3):15.
PMCID: PMC333399
19.  Editorial 
Journal of Biology  2003;2(1):1.
The momentum towards open-access publishing has continued to build in the months since Journal of Biology was launched.
PMCID: PMC156592
20.  Editorial 
Genome Biology  2002;4(1):101.
In keeping with its promise to evolve in response to the needs of readers, Genome Biology is making a number of practical changes with the beginning of 2003.
PMCID: PMC151276
21.  Editorial 
Genome Biology  2001;3(1):comment0001.1.
In its one-and-a-half year history Genome Biology has witnessed the publication of the first plant genome, the first draft of the human genome (twice) and a more than doubling of the number of completed microbial sequences. There has also been a shift in 'functional genomics' away from simple microarray data and towards studies of the expression, structure and function of proteins, pathway and network analysis, and harnessing the power of comparative genomics. Debate has also raged over the past year on the importance and merits of providing immediate world-wide, barrier-free open access to the full text of research articles.
PMCID: PMC150443
22.  Editorial 
Genome Biology  2000;1(1):comment001.1-comment001.2.
PMCID: PMC138818
23.  Editorial: The upper airway - the forgotten organ 
Critical Care  2001;5(1):1-2.
The upper airway is an organ not often investigated. Relatively little is known about its complex functions, and misunderstandings abound. The paper by Thomachot et al in this issue provides an opportunity to ponder on this important organ. Although the main result seems to be negative, the study provides some interesting physiological information on the upper airway and how it works.
PMCID: PMC137263  PMID: 11178219
humidification; filtration; upper airway; heat and moisture exchange
24.  Editorial 
Journal of Biology  2002;1(2):6.
Several aspects of Journal of Biology seem to have caught readers' attention. Some of the questions asked have arisen sufficiently often to be worth addressing here.
PMCID: PMC137066

Results 1-25 (28753)