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Search Results: 1 - 10 of 14042 matches for " Andrea Cippitelli "
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Endocannabinoid Regulation of Acute and Protracted Nicotine Withdrawal: Effect of FAAH Inhibition
Andrea Cippitelli, Giuseppe Astarita, Andrea Duranti, Giovanni Caprioli, Massimo Ubaldi, Serena Stopponi, Marsida Kallupi, Gianni Sagratini, Fernando Rodrìguez de Fonseca, Daniele Piomelli, Roberto Ciccocioppo
PLOS ONE , 2011, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0028142
Abstract: Evidence shows that the endocannabinoid system modulates the addictive properties of nicotine. In the present study, we hypothesized that spontaneous withdrawal resulting from removal of chronically implanted transdermal nicotine patches is regulated by the endocannabinoid system. A 7-day nicotine dependence procedure (5.2 mg/rat/day) elicited occurrence of reliable nicotine abstinence symptoms in Wistar rats. Somatic and affective withdrawal signs were observed at 16 and 34 hours following removal of nicotine patches, respectively. Further behavioral manifestations including decrease in locomotor activity and increased weight gain also occurred during withdrawal. Expression of spontaneous nicotine withdrawal was accompanied by fluctuation in levels of the endocannabinoid anandamide (AEA) in several brain structures including the amygdala, the hippocampus, the hypothalamus and the prefrontal cortex. Conversely, levels of 2-arachidonoyl-sn-glycerol were not significantly altered. Pharmacological inhibition of fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), the enzyme responsible for the intracellular degradation of AEA, by URB597 (0.1 and 0.3 mg/kg, i.p.), reduced withdrawal-induced anxiety as assessed by the elevated plus maze test and the shock-probe defensive burying paradigm, but did not prevent the occurrence of somatic signs. Together, the results indicate that pharmacological strategies aimed at enhancing endocannabinoid signaling may offer therapeutic advantages to treat the negative affective state produced by nicotine withdrawal, which is critical for the maintenance of tobacco use.
Role of a Genetic Polymorphism in the Corticotropin-Releasing Factor Receptor 1 Gene in Alcohol Drinking and Seeking Behaviors of Marchigian Sardinian Alcohol-Preferring Rats
Lydia O. Ayanwuyi,Francisca Carvajal,Jose M. Lerma-Cabrera,Esi Domi,Karl Bj?rk,Massimo Ubaldi,Markus Heilig,Marisa Roberto,Roberto Ciccocioppo,Andrea Cippitelli
Frontiers in Psychiatry , 2013, DOI: 10.3389/fpsyt.2013.00023
Abstract: Marchigian Sardinian alcohol-preferring (msP) rats exhibit innate preference for alcohol, are highly sensitive to stress and stress-induced alcohol seeking. Genetic analysis showed that over-expression of the corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) system of msP rats is correlated with the presence of two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) occurring in the promoter region (position ?1836 and ?2097) of the CRF1 receptor (CRF1-R) gene. Here we examined whether these point mutations were associated to the innate alcohol preference, stress-induced drinking, and seeking. We have recently re-derived the msP rats to obtain two distinct lines carrying the wild type (GG) and the point mutations (AA), respectively. The phenotypic characteristics of these two lines were compared with those of unselected Wistar rats. Both AA and GG rats showed similar patterns of voluntary alcohol intake and preference. Similarly, the pharmacological stressor yohimbine (0.0, 0.625, 1.25, and 2.5 mg/kg) elicited increased operant alcohol self-administration under fixed and progressive ratio reinforcement schedules in all three lines. Following extinction, yohimbine (0.0, 0.625, 1.25, and 2.5 mg/kg) significantly reinstated alcohol seeking in the three groups. However, at the highest dose this effect was no longer evident in AA rats. Treatment with the CRF1-R antagonist antalarmin (0, 5, 10, and 20 mg/kg) significantly reduced alcohol-reinforced lever pressing in the AA line (10 and 20 mg/kg) while a weaker or no effect was observed in the Wistar and the GG group, respectively. Finally, antalarmin significantly reduced yohimbine-induced increase in alcohol drinking in all three groups. In conclusion, these specific SNPs in the CRF1-R gene do not seem to play a primary role in the expression of the msP excessive drinking phenotype or stress-induced drinking but may be associated with a decreased threshold for stress-induced alcohol seeking and an increased sensitivity to the effects of pharmacological blockade of CRF1-R on alcohol drinking.
Kinect as a Tool for Gait Analysis: Validation of a Real-Time Joint Extraction Algorithm Working in Side View
Enea Cippitelli,Samuele Gasparrini,Susanna Spinsante,Ennio Gambi
Sensors , 2015, DOI: 10.3390/s150101417
Abstract: The Microsoft Kinect sensor has gained attention as a tool for gait analysis for several years. Despite the many advantages the sensor provides, however, the lack of a native capability to extract joints from the side view of a human body still limits the adoption of the device to a number of relevant applications. This paper presents an algorithm to locate and estimate the trajectories of up to six joints extracted from the side depth view of a human body captured by the Kinect device. The algorithm is then applied to extract data that can be exploited to provide an objective score for the “Get Up and Go Test”, which is typically adopted for gait analysis in rehabilitation fields. Starting from the depth-data stream provided by the Microsoft Kinect sensor, the proposed algorithm relies on anthropometric models only, to locate and identify the positions of the joints. Differently from machine learning approaches, this solution avoids complex computations, which usually require significant resources. The reliability of the information about the joint position output by the algorithm is evaluated by comparison to a marker-based system. Tests show that the trajectories extracted by the proposed algorithm adhere to the reference curves better than the ones obtained from the skeleton generated by the native applications provided within the Microsoft Kinect (Microsoft Corporation, Redmond,WA, USA, 2013) and OpenNI (OpenNI organization, Tel Aviv, Israel, 2013) Software Development Kits.
Integration of Highly Qualified Sub-Saharan Immigrants in Prague  [PDF]
Andrea Gerstnerová
Sociology Mind (SM) , 2011, DOI: 10.4236/sm.2011.12006
Abstract: Successful integration of immigrants into the host society demands a creation of specific conditions that would facilitate immigrants their adaptation to a new sociocultural, economic and political environment. Therefore, the process of integration itself is not only a task for immigrants, but also for a majority. One of the key factors for a creation of truly cohesive society is the support of positive aspects of mutual inter-cultural relations. This could be reinforced by implementation of “adequate” integration programs adapted to the local context as well as sensible use of mass media. If the host society does not dispose of effective instruments to integrate its “own citizens”, it is generally difficult to create strategies for insertion of immigrants of different cultural backgrounds (such as Sub-Saharan Africans). Basic features of the integration process of Sub-Saharan Africans and political reactions of the major society were identified in Prague, Paris, London and Liege.
Undesired Excess Capacity and Equilibrium in an Advanced Market Economy  [PDF]
Andrea Pannone
Modern Economy (ME) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/me.2013.411079
Abstract:

In this paper I attempt to give theoretical foundation to the concept of undesired excess capacity that I define as an unwilling, persistent mismatch between productive capacity and final demand. Undesired excess capacity has traditional room only in oligopolistic framework, like in Keynesian and Post-Keynesian models. Otherwise I show the possibility of its existence (and persistence) also with reference to a perfectly competitive economy where firms use massively information and communication technologies (ICT). In this stylized economy, undesired excess capacity is associated with “ex-post sunk costs, in terms of mismatch between total revenues and production costs. My approach, which draws a production theory alternative to the neoclassical one, makes it possible to account for these costs and connect them to the role of money, under the form of credit, in the continuation of the economic process. Moreover, in the conclusion of this paper, I show how the notion of equilibrium that emerges from the analysis could be useful to address the issue of dynamics.

Lerner Index, Productive Efficiency and Homotheticity  [PDF]
Andrea Mantovi
Theoretical Economics Letters (TEL) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/tel.2015.53042
Abstract: Chambers et al. (2014) set forth a decomposition of the Lerner index, which results in a function on the full space \"\"?of input and output prices and quantities, such that the effect of the Farrell output measure of technical efficiency is explicit. In close correspondence, a decomposition of the Lerner index is established in which allocative efficiency (in both standard and reversed form, as defined by Bogetoft et al., 2006) complements the effect of input technical efficiency, with the reversed decomposition bound to the hypothesis of homotheticity. The resulting functions on \"\"are conjectured to define pregnant perspectives on the benchmark relevance of homothetic models, and their generalizations to multiple output.
Spherical Casimir Effect for a Massive Scalar Field on the Three Dimensional Ball  [PDF]
Andrea Erdas
Journal of Modern Physics (JMP) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/jmp.2015.68115
Abstract: The zeta function regularization technique is used to study the Casimir effect for a scalar field of mass m satisfying Dirichlet boundary conditions on a spherical surface of radius a. In the case of large scalar mass, \"\", simple analytic expressions are obtained for the zeta function and Casimir energy of the scalar field when it is confined inside the spherical surface, and when it is confined outside the spherical surface. In both cases the Casimir energy is exact up to order \"\"and contains the expected divergencies, which can be eliminated using the well established renormalization procedure for the spherical Casimir effect. The case of a scalar field present in both the interior and exterior region is also examined and, for \"\", the zeta function, the Casimir energy, and the Casimir force are obtained. The obtained Casimir energy and force are exact up to order \"\"and \"\"respectively. In this scenario both energy and force are finite and do not need to be renormalized, and the force is found to produce an outward pressure on the spherical surface.
The dichotomy that faces nursing tutorial staff  [PDF]
Andrea M. Corbett
Open Journal of Nursing (OJN) , 2011, DOI: 10.4236/ojn.2011.11002
Abstract: There is a requirement for tutorial staff teaching on a degree programme to be engaged in research activity on a continuing basis. This is often in conflict with the demands that tutors in the Bachelor of Nursing programme are required to have academic ability and clinical skills whilst at the same time, engage in meaningful research activity. This does not occur. A study of the literature finds a commonality of this dichotomy throughout the world. A question is raised as to the impact of the increasing age of the nursing workforce; does this have an impact on the develop-ment of a research culture? It is suggested that the joint project approach adopted by the WITT (Western Institute of Technology at Taranaki) School of Nursing will assist in overcoming some of the identi-fied issues and begin the development of a research culture within the School that will be ongoing.
Financial Innovation, Macroeconomic Volatility and the Great Moderation  [PDF]
Lorenzo Bencivelli, Andrea Zaghini
Modern Economy (ME) , 2012, DOI: 10.4236/me.2012.35071
Abstract: In the paper we propose an assessment of the role of financial innovation in shaping US macroeconomic dynamics. We extend an existing model by Christiano, Eichenbaum and Evans which studied the transmission of monetary policy im- pulses to business and corporate sector financing variables just before the Great Moderation period. By investigating the properties of the model over a longer time span we show that in the later period a change in the monetary policy trans- mission mechanism is likely to have occurred. In particular, we argue that the role of financial innovation has signify- cantly altered the transmission of shocks.
Disclosure of Disability by University Students: Development of a Study Protocol  [PDF]
Andrea De Cesarei
Open Journal of Social Sciences (JSS) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/jss.2014.28012
Abstract: Within the life course of a person with disability, higher education represents an important step, and the disclosure of a disability is one of the first and most important choices that the person with disability has to take. Based on a review of the literature, it is described how a research protocol for investigating the effects of Self Efficacy and Metacognition on the Disclosure of Disability by university students is developed. These data would provide information concerning the predictive effects of the metacognitive skills, social support and self-efficacy on the attitudes towards the disclosure of a disability.
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