Abstract:
Pathologic processes in glaucoma include increased apoptosis, accumulation of extracellular material in the trabecular meshwork and optic nerve, condensations of the cytoskeleton and precocious cellular senescence. Oxidative stress was shown to generate these alterations in primary ocular cells. Fatty acids omega-3 and -6 are alleged to constitute a prophylaxis against these deleterious effects. Here, we tested actual preventive effects omega-3 and -6 against peroxide induced stress responses in primary human trabecular meshwork cells. Changes of mitochondrial activity, proliferation, heat shock proteins, extracellular matrix components, and inflammatory markers were evaluated. Alterations of the cytoskeleton were evaluated by phalloidin labeling. Here we report a repressive effect of omega-6 on metabolic activity and proliferation, which was not detected for omega-3. Both agents were able to prevent the anti-proliferative effect of H2O2, but only omega-3 prevented metabolic repression. Expression of heat shock protein 27 was unaltered by both fatty acids, whereas heat shock protein 90 was significantly induced by both. Omega-6 increased fibronectin and connective tissue growth factor synthesis, as well as the amount of secreted fibronectin. Omega-3, instead, induced plasminogen activator inhibitor 1 synthesis. H2O2 further increased fibronectin production in omega-6 supplemented cells, which was not the case in omega-3 treated cells. H2O2 stimulation of plasminogen activator inhibitor 1 and connective tissue growth factor was repressed by both fatty acids. Both fatty acids appeared to abolish H2O2 mediated stimulation of nuclear factor κB and IL-6, but not IL-1α and IL-8. H2O2 induced formation of cross-linked actin networks and stress fibers, which was reduced by preemptive application of omega-3. Omega-6, in contrast, had no protective effect on that, and even seemed to promote condensation. Based on the observed side effects of omega-6, omega-3 appears to be the more beneficial fatty acid in respect of prophylactic intake for prevention of a glaucomatous disease.

Abstract:
The incidence of olfactory disorders is appoximately 1-2% and they can seriously impact on the quality of life. Quantitative disorders (hyposmia, anosmia) are distinguished from qualitative disorders (parosmia, phantosmia). Olfactory disorders are classified according to the etiology and therapy is planned according to the underlying pathophysiology. In ENT patients olfactory disorders caused by sinonasal diseases are the most common ones, followed by postviral disorders. Therapy consists of topical and systemic steroids, whereas systemic application seems to be of greater value. It is very difficult to predict the improvement of olfactory function using surgery, moreover, the long term - success in surgery is questionable. Isolated taste disorders are rare and in most often caused by underlying diseases or side effects of medications. A meticulous history is necessary and helps to choose effective treatment. In selected cases zinc might be useful.

Abstract:
Intraocular pressure (IOP) is a highly heritable risk factor for primary open-angle glaucoma and is the only target for current glaucoma therapy. The genetic factors which determine IOP are largely unknown. We performed a genome-wide association study for IOP in 11,972 participants from 4 independent population-based studies in The Netherlands. We replicated our findings in 7,482 participants from 4 additional cohorts from the UK, Australia, Canada, and the Wellcome Trust Case-Control Consortium 2/Blue Mountains Eye Study. IOP was significantly associated with rs11656696, located in GAS7 at 17p13.1 (p = 1.4×10？8), and with rs7555523, located in TMCO1 at 1q24.1 (p = 1.6×10？8). In a meta-analysis of 4 case-control studies (total N = 1,432 glaucoma cases), both variants also showed evidence for association with glaucoma (p = 2.4×10？2 for rs11656696 and p = 9.1×10？4 for rs7555523). GAS7 and TMCO1 are highly expressed in the ciliary body and trabecular meshwork as well as in the lamina cribrosa, optic nerve, and retina. Both genes functionally interact with known glaucoma disease genes. These data suggest that we have identified two clinically relevant genes involved in IOP regulation.

Abstract:
The goal of the present study was to determine whether treatment with cigarette smoke extract (CSE) induces cell loss, cellular senescence, and extracellular matrix (ECM) synthesis in primary human retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells. Primary cultured human RPE cells were exposed to 2, 4, 8, and 12% of CSE concentration for 24 hours. Cell loss was detected by cell viability assay. Lipid peroxidation was assessed by loss of cis-parinaric acid (PNA) fluorescence. Senescence-associated ？-galactosidase (SA-？-Gal) activity was detected by histochemical staining. Expression of apolipoprotein J (Apo J), connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), fibronectin, and laminin were examined by real-time PCR, western blot, or ELISA experiments. The results showed that exposure of cells to 12% of CSE concentration induced cell death, while treatment of cells with 2, 4, and 8% CSE increased lipid peroxidation. Exposure to 8% of CSE markedly increased the number of SA-？-Gal positive cells to up to 82%, and the mRNA expression of Apo J, CTGF, and fibronectin by approximately 3–4 fold. Treatment with 8% of CSE also increased the protein expression of Apo J and CTGF and the secretion of fibronectin and laminin. Thus, treatment with CSE can induce cell loss, senescent changes, and ECM synthesis in primary human RPE cells. It may be speculated that cigarette smoke could be involved in cellular events in RPE cells as seen in age-related macular degeneration.

Abstract:
The measurement of the average depth of the shower maximum is the most commonly used observable for the possible inference of the primary cosmic-ray mass composition. Currently, different experimental Collaborations process and present their data not in the same way, leading to problems in the comparability and interpretation of the results. Whereas is expected to be proportional to in ideal conditions, we demonstrate that the finite field-of-view of fluorescence telescopes plus the attenuation in the atmosphere can introduce a non-linearity into this relation, which is specific for each particular detector setup.

Abstract:
It is well known that freeness appears in the high-dimensional limit of independence for matrices. Thus, for instance, the additive free Brownian motion can be seen as the limit of the Brownian motion on hermitian matrices. More generally, it is quite natural to try to build free L\'evy processes as high-dimensional limits of classical matricial L\'evy processes. We will focus here on one specific such construction, discussing and generalizing a work done previously by Biane, who has shown that the (classical) Brownian motion on the Unitary group U\left(d\right) converges to the free multiplicative Brownian motion when d goes to infinity. We shall first recall that result and give an alternative proof for it. We shall then see how this proof can be adapted in a more general context in order to get a free L\'evy process on the dual group (in the sense of Voiculescu) U\langle n\rangle. This result will actually amount to a truly noncommutative limit theorem for classical random variables, of the which Biane's result constitutes the case n=1.

Abstract:
Motivated by a desire to test the security of the pubic key exchange protocol of I. Anshel, M. Anshel, and D. Goldfeld, (``An Algebraic Method for Public-Key Cryptography'', Mathematical Research Letters, vol. 6, pp. 1-5, 1999), we study algorithmic approaches to the simple commutator decision and promise problems (SCDP/SCPP) for the braid groups B_n. We take as our point of departure a seminal paper of O. Ore, (``Some Remarks on Commutators'', Proceedings of the American Mathematical Society, Vol. 2, No. 2, pp.307-314, 1951), which studies the SCPP for the symmetric groups. Our results build on the work of H. Cejtin and I. Rivin, (``A Property of Alternating Groups'', arXiv:math.GR/0303036).

The paper presents a mathematical rotordynamic model regarding excitation due to elliptical shaft journals in sleeve bearings of electrical motors also considering the gyroscopic effect. For this kind of excitation, a mathematical rotordynamic model was developed considering the influence of the oil film stiffness and damping of the sleeve bearings, the stiffness of the end-shields and bearing housings, the stiffness of the rotor, the electromagnetic stiffness in the air gap of the electrical motor and the mass moment of inertia of the rotor and therefore also considering the gyroscopic effect. The solution of the linear differential equation system leads to the mathematical description of the absolute orbits of the shaft centre, the shaft journals and the bearing housings and to the relative orbits between the shaft journals and the bearing housings. Additionally, the bearing housing velocities can also be derived with this mathematical rotordynamic model.