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1.  Oxidative Stress and Inflammation in Renal Patients and Healthy Subjects 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(7):e22360.
The first goal of this study was to measure the oxidative stress (OS) and relate it to lipoprotein variables in 35 renal patients before dialysis (CKD), 37 on hemodialysis (HD) and 63 healthy subjects. The method for OS was based on the ratio of cholesteryl esters (CE) containing C18/C16 fatty acids (R2) measured by gas chromatography (GC) which is a simple, direct, rapid and reliable procedure. The second goal was to investigate and identify a triacylglycerol peak on GC, referred to as TG48 (48 represents the sum of the three fatty acids carbon chain lengths) which was markedly increased in renal patients compared to healthy controls. We measured TG48 in patients and controls. Mass spectrometry (MS) and MS twice in tandem were used to analyze the fatty acid composition of TG48. MS showed that TG48 was abundant in saturated fatty acids (SFAs) that were known for their pro-inflammatory property. TG48 was significantly and inversely correlated with OS. Renal patients were characterized by higher OS and inflammation than healthy subjects. Inflammation correlated strongly with TG, VLDL-cholesterol, apolipoprotein (apo) C-III and apoC-III bound to apoB-containing lipoproteins, but not with either total cholesterol or LDL-cholesterol.
In conclusion, we have discovered a new inflammatory factor, TG48. It is characterized with TG rich in saturated fatty acids. Renal patients have increased TG48 than healthy controls.
PMCID: PMC3145638  PMID: 21829457
2.  Escape from serial stimuli leading to food 
If the functional relations governing the strength of a conditioned reinforcer correspond to those obtained with other Pavlovian procedures (e.g., Kaplan, 1984), the termination of stimuli appearing early in the interval between successive food deliveries should be reinforcing. During initial training we presented four key colors, followed by food, in a recurrent sequence to each of 6 pigeons. This established a baseline level of autoshaped pecking. In later sessions, we terminated each of these colors or only the first color for a brief period following each peck, replacing the original color with a standard substitute to avoid darkening the key. Pecking decreased in the presence of the last color in the sequence but increased in the presence of the first. In accord with contemporary models of Pavlovian conditioning, these and other data suggest that the behavioral effects of stimuli in a chain may be better understood in terms of what each stimulus predicts, as measured by relative time to the terminal reinforcer, than in the exclusively positive terms of the traditional formulation (Skinner, 1938). The same model may also account for the initial pause under fixed-interval and fixed-ratio schedules of reinforcement.
PMCID: PMC1348266  PMID: 16812462
chaining model; sequence of stimuli; chain stimuli; relative time model; negative reinforcer; aversive stimulus; serial autoshaping; initial pause; key pecking; pigeons

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