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Search Results: 1 - 10 of 312104 matches for " Richard J. Servatius "
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Effects of psychotropic agents on extinction of lever-press avoidance in a rat model of anxiety vulnerability
Xilu Jiao,Richard J. Servatius,Kevin C. Pang
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience , 2014, DOI: 10.3389/fnbeh.2014.00322
Abstract: Avoidance and its perseveration represent key features of anxiety disorders. Both pharmacological and behavioral approaches (i.e. anxiolytics and extinction therapy) have been utilized to modulate avoidance behavior in patients. However, the outcome has not always been desirable. Part of the reason is attributed to the diverse neuropathology of anxiety disorders. Here, we investigated the effect of psychotropic drugs that target various monoamine systems on extinction of avoidance behavior using lever-press avoidance task. Here we used the Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rat, a unique rat model that exhibits facilitated avoidance and extinction resistance along with malfunction of the dopamine (DA) system. Sprague Dawley (SD) and WKY rats were trained to acquire lever-press avoidance. WKY rats acquired avoidance faster and to a higher level compared to SD rats. During pharmacological treatment, bupropion, and desipramine significantly reduced avoidance response selectively in WKY rats. However, after the discontinuation of drug treatment, only those WKY rats that were previously treated with desipramine exhibited lower avoidance response compared to the control group. In contrast, none of the psychotropic drugs facilitated avoidance extinction in SD rats. Instead, desipramine impaired avoidance extinction and increased non-reinforced response in SD rats. Interestingly, paroxetine, a widely used antidepressant and anxiolytic, exhibited the weakest effect in WKY rats and no effects at all in SD rats. Thus, our data suggest that malfunctions in brain catecholamine system could be one of the underlying etiologies of anxiety-like behavior, particularly avoidance perseveration. Pharmacological manipulation targeting DA and norepinephrine is more effective to facilitate extinction learning in this strain. The data from the present study may shed light on new pharmacological approaches to treat patients with anxiety disorders who are not responding to serotonin re-uptake inhibitors.
Acquisition and extinction of human avoidance behavior: Attenuating effect of safety signals and associations with anxiety vulnerabilities
Jony Sheynin,Richard J. Servatius,Catherine E. Myers
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience , 2014, DOI: 10.3389/fnbeh.2014.00323
Abstract: While avoidance behavior is often an adaptive strategy, exaggerated avoidance can be detrimental and result in the development of psychopathologies, such as anxiety disorders. A large animal literature shows that the acquisition and extinction of avoidance behavior in rodents depends on individual differences (e.g., sex, strain) and might be modulated by the presence of environmental cues. However, there is a dearth of such reports in human literature, mainly due to the lack of adequate experimental paradigms. In the current study, we employed a computer-based task, where participants control a spaceship and attempt to gain points by shooting an enemy spaceship that appears on the screen. Warning signals predict on-screen aversive events; the participants can learn a protective response to escape or avoid these events. This task has been recently used to reveal facilitated acquisition of avoidance behavior in individuals with anxiety vulnerability, due to female sex or inhibited personality. Here, we extended the task to include an extinction phase, and tested the effect of signals that appeared during “safe” periods. Healthy young adults (n=122) were randomly assigned to a testing condition with or without such signals. Results showed that the addition of safety signals during the acquisition phase impaired acquisition (in females) and facilitated extinction of the avoidance behavior. We also replicated our recent finding of an association between female sex and longer avoidance duration and further showed that females continued to demonstrate more avoidance behavior even on extinction trials when the aversive events no longer occurred. This study is the first to show sex differences on the acquisition and extinction of human avoidance behavior and to demonstrate the role of safety signals in such behavior, highlighting the potential relevance of safety signals for cognitive therapies that focus on extinction learning to treat anxiety symptoms.
Avoidance as expectancy in rats: Sex and strain differences in acquisition
Pelin Avcu,Xilu Jiao,Catherine E. Myers,Kevin C. Pang,Richard J. Servatius
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience , 2014, DOI: 10.3389/fnbeh.2014.00334
Abstract: Avoidance is a core feature of anxiety disorders and factors which increase avoidance expression or its resistance represent a source of vulnerability for anxiety disorders. Outbred female Sprague Dawley (SD) rats and inbred male and female Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats expressing behaviorally inhibited (BI) temperament learn avoidance faster than male SD rats. The training protocol used in these studies had a longstanding interpretive flaw: a lever-press had two outcomes, termination of the warning signal (WS) and prevention of foot shock. To disambiguate between these two explanations, we conducted an experiment in which: a) a lever-press terminated the WS and prevented shock, and b) a lever-press only prevented shock, but did not influence the duration of the WS. Thus, a 2 x 2 x 2 (Strain x Sex x Training) design was employed to assess the degree to which the response contingency of the WS termination influenced acquisition. Male and female SD and WKY rats were matched on acoustic startle reactivity within strain and sex and randomly assigned to the training procedures. In addition, we assessed whether the degree of avoidance acquisition affected estrus cycling in female rats. Consistent with earlier work, avoidance performance of female rats was generally superior to males and WKY rats were superior to SD rats. Moreover, female SD and male WKY rats were roughly equivalent. Female sex and BI temperament were confirmed as vulnerability factors in faster acquisition of avoidance behavior. Avoidance acquisition disrupted estrus cycling with female WKY rats recovering faster than female SD rats. Although termination of the WS appears to be reinforcing, male and female WKY rats still achieved a high degree (greater than 80% asymptotic performance) of avoidance in the absence of the WS termination contingency. Such disambiguation will facilitate determination of the neurobiological basis for avoidance learning and its extinction.
Enhanced conditioned eyeblink response acquisition and proactive interference in anxiety vulnerable individuals
Jacqueline L. Holloway,Payal Trivedi,Catherine E. Myers,Richard J. Servatius
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience , 2012, DOI: 10.3389/fnbeh.2012.00076
Abstract: In classical conditioning, proactive interference may arise from experience with the conditioned stimulus (CS), the unconditional stimulus (US), or both, prior to their paired presentations. Interest in the application of proactive interference has extended to clinical populations as either a risk factor for disorders or as a secondary sign. Although the current literature is dense with comparisons of stimulus pre-exposure effects in animals, such comparisons are lacking in human subjects. As such, interpretation of proactive interference over studies as well as its generalization and utility in clinical research is limited. The present study was designed to assess eyeblink response acquisition after equal numbers of CS, US, and explicitly unpaired CS and US pre-exposures, as well as to evaluate how anxiety vulnerability might modulate proactive interference. In the current study, anxiety vulnerability was assessed using the State/Trait Anxiety Inventories as well as the adult and retrospective measures of behavioral inhibition (AMBI and RMBI, respectively). Participants were exposed to 1 of 4 possible pre-exposure contingencies: 30 CS, 30 US, 30 CS, and 30 US explicitly unpaired pre-exposures, or Context pre-exposure, immediately prior to standard delay training. Robust proactive interference was evident in all pre-exposure groups relative to Context pre-exposure, independent of anxiety classification, with CR acquisition attenuated at similar rates. In addition, trait anxious individuals were found to have enhanced overall acquisition as well as greater proactive interference relative to non-vulnerable individuals. The findings suggest that anxiety vulnerable individuals learn implicit associations faster, an effect which persists after the introduction of new stimulus contingencies. This effect is not due to enhanced sensitivity to the US. Such differences would have implications for the development of anxiety psychopathology within a learning framework.
Learning to Obtain Reward, but Not Avoid Punishment, Is Affected by Presence of PTSD Symptoms in Male Veterans: Empirical Data and Computational Model
Catherine E. Myers, Ahmed A. Moustafa, Jony Sheynin, Kirsten M. VanMeenen, Mark W. Gilbertson, Scott P. Orr, Kevin D. Beck, Kevin C. H. Pang, Richard J. Servatius
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0072508
Abstract: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms include behavioral avoidance which is acquired and tends to increase with time. This avoidance may represent a general learning bias; indeed, individuals with PTSD are often faster than controls on acquiring conditioned responses based on physiologically-aversive feedback. However, it is not clear whether this learning bias extends to cognitive feedback, or to learning from both reward and punishment. Here, male veterans with self-reported current, severe PTSD symptoms (PTSS group) or with few or no PTSD symptoms (control group) completed a probabilistic classification task that included both reward-based and punishment-based trials, where feedback could take the form of reward, punishment, or an ambiguous “no-feedback” outcome that could signal either successful avoidance of punishment or failure to obtain reward. The PTSS group outperformed the control group in total points obtained; the PTSS group specifically performed better than the control group on reward-based trials, with no difference on punishment-based trials. To better understand possible mechanisms underlying observed performance, we used a reinforcement learning model of the task, and applied maximum likelihood estimation techniques to derive estimated parameters describing individual participants’ behavior. Estimations of the reinforcement value of the no-feedback outcome were significantly greater in the control group than the PTSS group, suggesting that the control group was more likely to value this outcome as positively reinforcing (i.e., signaling successful avoidance of punishment). This is consistent with the control group’s generally poorer performance on reward trials, where reward feedback was to be obtained in preference to the no-feedback outcome. Differences in the interpretation of ambiguous feedback may contribute to the facilitated reinforcement learning often observed in PTSD patients, and may in turn provide new insight into how pathological behaviors are acquired and maintained in PTSD.
Improving the reliability of computer communication networks
Improving the Reliability of Computer Communication Networks

Shi Weigeng,Servatius Brigitte,
Weigeng Shi
,Brigitte Servatius

计算机科学技术学报 , 1991,
Abstract: For networks that are directed or can be represented by a directed networks, reversing one or more of the uni-directional links may provide the ability to reconnect a network that has been disconnected by link failure. In this paper, a new approach to reconfigure such networks is proposed. We develop a linear time algorithm which, when reachability has been destroyed by the removal of a single link, optimally restores reachability through the reversal of selected links. Multi-link failure reconnectability is discussed and an algorithm with polynomial complexity is given which provides a nearly optimum solution to reconnect the network. We show that the reliability of a network that allows reversals is at least twice more than that in which reversals are not permitted. Unfortunately, the reconnection of some networks cannot be established. Therefore, we discuss the maximization of reachability of such networks so that each node can reach maximum number of the other nodes.
Combinatorial pseudo-Triangulations
David Orden,Francisco Santos,Brigitte Servatius,Herman Servatius
Mathematics , 2003, DOI: 10.1016/j.disc.2005.09.045
Abstract: We prove that a planar graph is generically rigid in the plane if and only if it can be embedded as a pseudo-triangulation. This generalizes the main result of math.CO/0307347 which treats the minimally generically rigid case. The proof uses the concept of combinatorial pseudo-triangulation, CPT, in the plane and has two main steps: showing that a certain ``generalized Laman property'' is a necessary and sufficient condition for a CPT to be ``stretchable'', and showing that all generically rigid plane graphs admit a CPT assignment with that property. Additionally, we propose the study of combinatorial pseudo-triangulations on closed surfaces.
Measurement Error for Age of Onset in Prevalent Cohort Studies  [PDF]
Yujie Zhong, Richard J. Cook
Applied Mathematics (AM) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/am.2014.511160

Prevalent cohort studies involve screening a sample of individuals from a population for disease, recruiting affected individuals, and prospectively following the cohort of individuals to record the occurrence of disease-related complications or death. This design features a response-biased sampling scheme since individuals living a long time with the disease are preferentially sampled, so naive analysis of the time from disease onset to death will over-estimate survival probabilities. Unconditional and conditional analyses of the resulting data can yield consistent estimates of the survival distribution subject to the validity of their respective model assumptions. The time of disease onset is retrospectively reported by sampled individuals, however, this is often associated with measurement error. In this article we present a framework for studying the effect of measurement error in disease onset times in prevalent cohort studies, report on empirical studies of the effect in each framework of analysis, and describe likelihood-based methods to address such a measurement error.

Combinatorial Characterization of the Assur Graphs from Engineering
Brigitte Servatius,Offer Shai,Walter Whiteley
Mathematics , 2008,
Abstract: We introduce the idea of Assur graphs, a concept originally developed and exclusively employed in the literature of the kinematics community. The paper translates the terminology, questions, methods and conjectures from the kinematics terminology for one degree of freedom linkages to the terminology of Assur graphs as graphs with special properties in rigidity theory. Exploiting recent works in combinatorial rigidity theory we provide mathematical characterizations of these graphs derived from minimal linkages. With these characterizations, we confirm a series of conjectures posed by Offer Shai, and offer techniques and algorithms to be exploited further in future work.
Geometric Properties of Assur Graphs
Brigitte Servatius,Offer Shai,Walter Whiteley
Mathematics , 2008,
Abstract: In our previous paper, we presented the combinatorial theory for minimal isostatic pinned frameworks - Assur graphs - which arise in the analysis of mechanical linkages. In this paper we further explore the geometric properties of Assur graphs, with a focus on singular realizations which have static self-stresses. We provide a new geometric characterization of Assur graphs, based on special singular realizations. These singular positions are then related to dead-end positions in which an associated mechanism with an inserted driver will stop or jam.
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