Newcastle, NSW, Australia

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    ABSTRACT: Superficial dorsal horn (SDH) neurons process nociceptive information and their excitability is partly determined by the properties of voltage-gated sodium channels. Recently, we showed the excitability and action potential properties of mouse SDH neurons change markedly during early postnatal development. Here we compare sodium currents generated in neonate (P0-5) and young adult (≥P21) SDH neurons. Whole cell recordings were obtained from lumbar SDH neurons in transverse spinal cord slices (CsF internal, 32°C). Fast activating and inactivating TTX-sensitive inward currents were evoked by depolarization from a holding potential of −100 mV. Poorly clamped currents, based on a deflection in the IV relationship at potentials between −60 and −50 mV, were not accepted for analysis. Current density and decay time increased significantly between the first and third weeks of postnatal development, whereas time to peak was similar at both ages. This was accompanied by more subtle changes in activation range and steady state inactivation. Recovery from inactivation was slower and TTX-sensitivity was reduced in young adult neurons. Our study suggests sodium channel expression changes markedly during early postnatal development in mouse SDH neurons. The methods employed in this study can now be applied to future investigations of spinal cord sodium channel plasticity in murine pain models.
    Molecular Pain 12/2015; 11(1). DOI:10.1186/s12990-015-0014-5
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    ABSTRACT: The ability to induce Arabidopsis protoplasts to dedifferentiate and divide provides a convenient system to analyze organelle dynamics in plant cells acquiring totipotency. Using peroxisome-targeted fluorescent proteins, we show that during protoplast culture, peroxisomes undergo massive proliferation and disperse uniformly around the cell before cell division. Peroxisome dispersion is influenced by the cytoskeleton, ensuring unbiased segregation during cell division. Considering their role in oxidative metabolism, we also investigated how peroxisomes influence homeostasis of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Protoplast isolation induces an oxidative burst, with mitochondria the likely major ROS producers. Subsequently ROS levels in protoplast cultures decline, correlating with the increase in peroxisomes, suggesting that peroxisome proliferation may also aid restoration of ROS homeostasis. Transcriptional profiling showed up-regulation of several peroxisome-localized antioxidant enzymes, most notably catalase (CAT). Analysis of antioxidant levels, CAT activity and CAT isoform 3 mutants (cat3) indicate that peroxisome-localized CAT plays a major role in restoring ROS homeostasis. Furthermore, protoplast cultures of pex11a, a peroxisome division mutant, and cat3 mutants show reduced induction of cell division. Taken together, the data indicate that peroxisome proliferation and CAT contribute to ROS homeostasis and subsequent protoplast division induction.
    Frontiers in Plant Science 08/2015; 6. DOI:10.3389/fpls.2015.00658
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    ABSTRACT: According to the International Labour Organization some 2.3 million diseases and 474 million accidents are experienced annually by workplaces. The associated social and economic costs of these accidents and diseases, which are estimated at 4 percent of Global Gross Product, are expected to increase further as our next generation of workers continues to face challenges from a range of quarters. Managing these costs, therefore, continues to be a challenge for policy makers, practitioners and academics involved in accident prevention and safety management. A possible reason for this dire state of affairs is that developments in safety management have been outpaced by technological advancements, and more innovations are needed. This requires us to re-think the way organizations manage safety. Doing this, however, requires us to have a much better understanding of how accidents are caused, how they can be prevented and how safety can be managed in organizations. This paper attempts to do this through a review of the state-of-the-art, by revisiting our current understanding of how accidents are caused and how they can be prevented and managed. First, it introduces a scheme known as the three eras of safety. This is followed by a review of published papers in accident causation and safety management, which are analysed using a three-step approach based on the scheme introduced. The paper concludes by proposing research questions that policy makers, practitioners and academics may want to think about in advancing the accident prevention and safety management agenda.
    6th International Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics (AHFE 2015) and the Affiliated Conferences, AHFE 2015, Las Vegas, USA; 07/2015


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    University Drive, 2308, Newcastle, NSW, Australia
  • Head of Institution
    Caroline McMillen
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Nexus Network Journal 03/2004; 6(1):51-53. DOI:10.1007/s00004-004-0006-7
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