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1.  3-Benzhydryl-1,3,4-thia­diazole-2(3H)-thione 
In the title compound, C15H12N2S2, the two phenyl rings and the planar (r.m.s. deviation = 0.002 Å) thia­diazole ring adopt a propeller conformation about the central C—H axis with H—C—C—C(phen­yl) torsion angles of 44 and 42° and an H—C—N—C(thia­diazole) torsion angle of 28°. Intra­molecular C—H⋯S and C—H⋯N contacts are observed. In the crystal, centrosymmetrically related mol­ecules associate through C—H⋯π inter­actions. These are connected into a supra­molecular chain along [101] by C—H⋯N inter­actions.
PMCID: PMC3884419  PMID: 24427045
2.  Functional Imaging of the Human Brainstem during Somatosensory Input and Autonomic Output 
Over the past half a century, many investigations in experimental animal have explored the functional roles of specific regions in the brainstem. Despite the accumulation of a considerable body of knowledge in, primarily, anesthetized preparations, relatively few studies have explored brainstem function in awake humans. It is important that human brainstem function is explored given that many neurological conditions, from obstructive sleep apnea, chronic pain, and hypertension, likely involve significant changes in the processing of information within the brainstem. Recent advances in the collection and processing of magnetic resonance images have resulted in the possibility of exploring brainstem activity changes in awake healthy individuals and in those with various clinical conditions. We and others have begun to explore changes in brainstem activity in humans during a number of challenges, including cutaneous and muscle pain, as well as during maneuvers that evoke increases in sympathetic nerve activity. More recently we have successfully recorded sympathetic nerve activity concurrently with functional magnetic resonance imaging of the brainstem, which will allow us, for the first time to explore brainstem sites directly responsible for conditions such as hypertension. Since many pathophysiological conditions no doubt involve changes in brainstem function and structure, defining these changes will likely result in a greater ability to develop more effective treatment regimens.
PMCID: PMC3775150  PMID: 24062670
trigeminal nuclei; dorsal column nuclei; pain; sympathetic nerve activity; rostral ventrolateral medulla
3.  1-[4-Chloro-3-(trifluoro­meth­yl)phen­yl]-4-phenyl-1H-1,2,3-triazole 
In the title compound, C15H9ClF3N3, the phenyl and chloro-trifluoro­methyl benzene rings are twisted with respect to the planar triazole group, making dihedral angles of 21.29 (12) and 32.19 (11)°, respectively. In the crystal, the mol­ecules pack in a head-to-tail arrangement along the a axis with closest inter-centroid distances between the triazole rings of 3.7372 (12) Å.
PMCID: PMC3515254  PMID: 23284474
4.  Autonomic markers of emotional processing: skin sympathetic nerve activity in humans during exposure to emotionally charged images 
The sympathetic innervation of the skin primarily subserves thermoregulation, but the system has also been commandeered as a means of expressing emotion. While it is known that the level of skin sympathetic nerve activity (SSNA) is affected by anxiety, the majority of emotional studies have utilized the galvanic skin response as a means of inferring increases in SSNA. The purpose of the present study was to characterize the changes in SSNA when showing subjects neutral or emotionally charged images from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS). SSNA was recorded via tungsten microelectrodes inserted into cutaneous fascicles of the common peroneal nerve in ten subjects. Neutral images, positively charged images (erotica) or negatively charged images (mutilation) were presented in blocks of fifteen images of a specific type, each block lasting 2 min. Images of erotica or mutilation were presented in a quasi-random fashion, each block following a block of neutral images. Both images of erotica or images of mutilation caused significant increases in SSNA, but the increases in SSNA were greater for mutilation. The increases in SSNA were often coupled with sweat release and cutaneous vasoconstriction; however, these markers were not always consistent with the SSNA increases. We conclude that SSNA, comprising cutaneous vasoconstrictor and sudomotor activity, increases with both positively charged and negatively charged emotional images. Measurement of SSNA provides a more comprehensive assessment of sympathetic outflow to the skin than does the use of sweat release alone as a marker of emotional processing.
PMCID: PMC3461643  PMID: 23060818
skin sympathetic nerve activity; emotionally charged images; microneurography; sweat release; skin blood flow
5.  Methyl 3-[4-(4-nitro­benz­yloxy)phen­yl]propano­ate 
The title compound, C17H17NO5, crystallizes with two mol­ecules (A and B) in the asymmetric unit. The conformational structures of the two mol­ecules show small but significant differences in the dihedral angles between the two aryl rings with values of 18.8 (1)° for mol­ecule A and 7.5 (1)° for mol­ecule B. In mol­ecule A, the propano­ate group is twisted out of the plane of the benzene group [Car—Car—C—C torsion angle = −44.9 (2)°], while for mol­ecule B, this group lies closer to the plane [Car—Car—C—C torsion angle = 8.6 (3)°]. C—H⋯O inter­actions characterize the crystal-packing inter­actions in this compound.
PMCID: PMC3393271  PMID: 22807828
6.  Investigating Ionic Effects Applied to Water Based Organocatalysed Aldol Reactions 
Saturated aqueous solutions of various common salts were examined for their effect on aqueous aldol reactions catalysted by a highly active C2-symmetric diprolinamide organocatalyst developed in our laboratory. With respect to the aldol reaction between cyclohexanone and 4-nitrobenzaldehyde, deionised water was always a superior medium to salt solutions though some correlation to increasing anion size and depression in enantiomeric excess could be observed. Additionally, the complete inhibition of catalyst activity observed when employing tap water could be alleviated by the inclusion of ethylenediaminetetraacetate (EDTA) into the aqueous media prior to reaction initiation. Extension of these reaction conditions demonstrated that these ionic effects vary on a case-to-case basis depending on the ketone/aldehyde combination.
PMCID: PMC3257117  PMID: 22272120
ionic solution; organocatalysis; aldol; water

Results 1-6 (6)