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Glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs) have recently become one of the primary natural hazards in the Himalayas. There is therefore an urgent need to assess GLOF hazards in the region. Cirenmaco, a moraine-dammed lake located in the upstream portion of Zhangzangbo valley, Central Himalayas, has received public attention after its damaging 1981 outburst flood. Here, by combining remote sensing methods, bathymetric survey and 2D hydraulic modeling, we assessed the hazard posed by Cirenmaco in its current status. Inter-annual variation of Cirenmaco lake area indicates a rapid lake expansion from 0.10±0.08km2 in 1988 to 0.39±0.04km2 in 2013. Bathymetric survey shows the maximum water depth of the lake in 2012 was 115±2m and the lake volume was calculated to be 1.8×107m3. Field geomorphic analysis shows that Cirenmaco glacial lake is prone to GLOFs as mass movements and ice and snow avalanches can impact the lake and the melting of the dead ice in the moraine can lower the dam level. HEC-RAS 2D model was then used to simulate moraine dam failure of the Cirenmaco and assess GLOF impacts downstream. Reconstruction of Cirenmaco 1981 GLOF shows that HEC-RAS can produce reasonable flood extent and water depth, thus demonstrate its ability to effectively model complex GLOFs. GLOF modeling results presented can be used as a basis for the implementation of disaster prevention and mitigation measures. As a case study, this work shows how we can integrate different methods to GLOF hazard assessment.
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Inspired by the early fieldwork of G. Haynes with large sized predators in wilderness areas, the following paper presents data on bone damage patterns in a sample of guanacos killed by one of the largest predators in South America, the puma (Puma concolor, Felidae, Carnivora). We describe the bone modification pattern on the carcasses, including skeletal part representation, bone fractures, and tooth marks. Also, tooth mark modifications on bones collected from a puma enclosure at a local zoo were analyzed. Our results indicate a light modification of guanaco carcass by puma; bone damages located mainly in the upper portions of rear and forelimbs, rib cage, and scapular and pelvic girdles; and the presence of a low percentage of fractured bones. Scores, pits, and punctures are the best represented tooth marks. On average, punctures are 3.5–5 mm in diameter, although larger tooth impressions are observed. The light consumption of guanaco by the puma would provide a potential source for scavenging by other carnivores and humans.
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Cytokinesis is an essential event in canonical cell division. In multicellular organisms, cells must divide in the context of neighboring cells in intact tissues. Recent studies have shown that tissue architecture can regulate the dynamics of and molecular requirements for cytokinesis. On the other hand, regulated cytokinesis failure occurs in, and is required for the proper function of, certain cell types and tissues including cardiomyocytes, hepatocytes, and germ lines. One way to build our understanding of cytokinesis in diverse cell types is to visualize cytokinesis in intact tissues. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a powerful system for such inquiries due to the well-characterized, invariant lineage of each of its cells, the ease of genomic modifications including tagging proteins, and many more advantages. The clear cuticle of C. elegans allows for live imaging of intact tissues; however, the worm's motility can confound imaging. Here we introduce two C. elegans tissues, an epithelial tissue and the germ line, both excellent systems for the study of cytokinesis in the context of an intact animal. Additionally, we present three protocols for overcoming the challenges of live imaging in C. elegans.
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Polyploidy, the state of having greater than a diploid DNA content (tetraploid, octoploid, etc.) is a characteristic feature of mammalian hepatocytes and accompanies late fetal development and postnatal maturation of the liver. During the weaning period, diploid hepatocytes can engage either into normal cell division cycle giving rise to two diploid hepatocytes or follow a scheduled division program characterized by incomplete cytokinesis. In that case, diploid hepatocytes undergo mitosis, but do not form a contractile ring. Indeed, cleavage-plane specification is never established, because of the deficiencies of actin cytoskeleton reorganization. Furthermore, microtubules fail both to contact the cortex and to deliver their molecular signal, preventing localization and activation of RhoA. Therefore, cytokinesis aborts and a binucleate tetraploid liver cell is generated, which subsequently plays a pivotal role in liver progressive polyploidization. In this chapter, we describe detailed protocols to monitor hepatocyte proliferation and cytokinesis process by in situ and dynamic ex vivo approaches.
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Spinal ependymomas are predominantly slow-growing lesions constituting approximately 30–88% of primary spinal intramedullary tumors. They usually present as circumscribed lesions, with regular margins and a clear surgical plane. Gross-total resection is often feasible and potentially curative but neurosurgeons should keep in mind that the ultimate goal of surgery is the preservation of spinal cord function. We present the surgical technique to safely resect an intramedullary ependymoma using a posterior median sulcus approach. A brief description of current management of this pathology is also presented.
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Check dams are transversal structures built across morphologically-active streams in mountainous regions. These structures have been used widely in torrent-hazard mitigation for over 150years. Thousands of them are regularly maintained by stream managers and torrent-control services. The stabilization role of these structures is well known, i.e. they durably constrain the stream-bed through the creation of vertical and planar fixed points. What is not yet clear is to what extent check dams influence bed-load transport: How do peak solid discharge or flood-transported volume change when check dams are added to a reach? To address these questions, long-lasting small-scale experiments were conducted in a 4.8-m-long flume with either one, three or no structures. The results show that the addition of structures creates independent compartments in the bed level, which have a strong influence on bed surface armouring and stream morphodynamics: the consequence is that instantaneous transport intensities are unchanged, but peak solid discharge occur more often and for shorter duration. This results in the same total transported volume over the long term, but reduced volume for a single transport event. It reaffirms the observation of pioneering authors of the mid-19th and early 20th century who conceptualized the possible sediment transport regulation function of check dams: in addition to stabilizing the stream-bed, check dams influence bed-load transport through a buffering effect, releasing frequently and in small doses what, in their absence, would be transported abruptly en masse during rare extreme events.
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Digital elevation models (DEMs) built from repeated topographic surveys permit producing DEM of Difference (DoD) that enables assessment of elevation variations and estimation of volumetric changes through time. In the framework of sediment transport studies, DEM differencing enables quantitative and spatially-distributed representation of erosion and deposition within the analyzed time window, at both the channel reach and the catchment scale. In this study, two high-resolution Digital Terrain Models (DTMs) derived from airborne LiDAR data (2m resolution) acquired in 2005 and 2011 were used to characterize the topographic variations caused by sediment erosion, transport and deposition in two adjacent mountain basins (Gadria and Strimm, Vinschgau - Venosta valley, Eastern Alps, Italy). These catchments were chosen for their contrasting morphology and because they feature different types and intensity of sediment transfer processes. A method based on fuzzy logic, which takes into account spatially variable DTMs uncertainty, was used to derive the DoD of the study area. Volumes of erosion and deposition calculated from the DoD were then compared with post-event field surveys to test the consistency of two independent estimates. Results show an overall agreement between the estimates, with differences due to the intrinsic approximations of the two approaches. The consistency of DoD with post-event estimates encourages the integration of these two methods, whose combined application may permit to overcome the intrinsic limitations of the two estimations. The comparison between 2005 and 2011 DTMs allowed to investigate the relationships between topographic changes and geomorphometric parameters expressing the role of topography on sediment erosion and deposition (i.e., slope and contributing area) and describing the morphology influenced by debris flows and fluvial processes (i.e., curvature). Erosion and deposition relations in the slope-area space display substantial differences between the Gadria and the Strimm basins. While in the former erosion and deposition clusters are reasonably well discriminated, in the latter, characterized by a complex stepped structure, we observe substantial overlapping. Erosion mostly occurred in areas that show persistency of concavity or transformation from convex and flat to concave surfaces, whereas deposition prevailingly took place on convex morphologies. Less expected correspondences between curvature and topographic changes can be explained by the variable sediment transport processes, which are often characterized by alternation of erosion and deposition between different events and even during the same event.
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In this study, we present a framework that infers human activities from observations using semantic representations. The proposed framework can be utilized to address the difficult and challenging problem of transferring tasks and skills to humanoid robots. We propose a method that allows robots to obtain and determine a higher-level understanding of a demonstrator's behavior via semantic representations. This abstraction from observations captures the “essence” of the activity, thereby indicating which aspect of the demonstrator's actions should be executed in order to accomplish the required activity. Thus, a meaningful semantic description is obtained in terms of human motions and object properties. In addition, we validated the semantic rules obtained in different conditions, i.e., three different and complex kitchen activities: 1) making a pancake; 2) making a sandwich; and 3) setting the table. We present quantitative and qualitative results, which demonstrate that without any further training, our system can deal with time restrictions, different execution styles of the same task by several participants, and different labeling strategies. This means, the rules obtained from one scenario are still valid even for new situations, which demonstrates that the inferred representations do not depend on the task performed. The results show that our system correctly recognized human behaviors in real-time in around 87.44% of cases, which was even better than a random participant recognizing the behaviors of another human (about 76.68%). In particular, the semantic rules acquired can be used to effectively improve the dynamic growth of the ontology-based knowledge representation. Hence, this method can be used flexibly across different demonstrations and constraints to infer and achieve a similar goal to that observed. Furthermore, the inference capability introduced in this study was integrated into a joint space control loop for a humanoid robot, an iCub, for achieving similar goals to the human demonstrator online.
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