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[en] Microgels are cross-linked soft particles with a three-dimensional network structure that are swollen in a good solvent. Poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (pNIPAAm)-based microgels have attracted great attentions for their temperature responsive property, particularly in recent years, pNIPAAm-based microgel films were utilized as a new kind of thermoresponsive surface to tune cell attachment/detachment behavior via temperature stimuli. However, some results are not consistent, for example, different polymerization conditions may bring out different results even for pure pNIPAAm microgel. This work aims to find out which factor plays the critical role for successful cell detachment on the pNIPAAm-based microgel films. The results unraveled that the structure and swelling ratio of the microgel rather than the film thickness plays a key role on the successful cells detachment, unlike linear pNIPAAm films in which the cells’ attach/detach property is only determined by the film thickness. For poly(N-isopropylacrylamide–styrene) microgel film, NIH3T3 cells could only detach when the microgel has a uniform structure and the volume dilatation of the microgel (20/38 °C) is larger than 4.
[en] Neutron imaging is an incredibly powerful tool for non-destructive sample characterization and materials science. Neutron tomography is one technique that results in a three-dimensional model of the sample, representing the interaction of the neutrons with the sample. This relies both on reliable data acquisition and on image processing after acquisition. Over the course of the project, the focus has changed from the former to the latter, culminating in a large-scale reconstruction of a meter-long fossilized skull. The full reconstruction is not yet complete, though tools have been developed to improve the speed and accuracy of the reconstruction. This project helps to improve the capabilities of LANSCE and LANL with regards to imaging large or unwieldy objects.
[en] The purpose of the Central Plateau Vadose Zone (CPVZ) Geoframework model (GFM) is to provide a reasonable, consistent, and defensible three-dimensional (3D) representation of the vadose zone beneath the Central Plateau at the Hanford Site to support the Composite Analysis (CA) vadose zone contaminant fate and transport models. The GFM is a 3D representation of the subsurface geologic structure. From this 3D geologic model, exported results in the form of point, surface, and/or volumes are used as inputs to populate and assemble the various numerical model architectures, providing a 3D-layered grid that is consistent with the GFM. The objective of this report is to define the process used to produce a hydrostratigraphic model for the vadose zone beneath the Hanford Site Central Plateau and the corresponding CA domain.
[en] The basic concepts behind topological insulators are briefly reviewed. After discussing what makes some insulators topological and giving a brief history of this rapidly growing field, recent successes in experiments with these exotic materials are discussed. (reviews of topical problems)
[en] Microelectrode arrays (MEAs) are gaining increasing importance for the investigation of signaling processes between electrogenic cells. However, efficient cell–chip coupling for robust and long-term electrophysiological recording and stimulation still remains a challenge. A possible approach for the improvement of the cell–electrode contact is the utilization of three-dimensional structures. In recent years, various 3D electrode geometries have been developed, but we are still lacking a fabrication approach that enables the formation of different 3D structures on a single chip in a controlled manner. This, however, is needed to enable a direct and reliable comparison of the recording capabilities of the different structures. Here, we present a method for a precisely controlled deposition of nanoelectrodes, enabling the fabrication of multiple, well-defined types of structures on our 64 electrode MEAs towards a rapid-prototyping approach to 3D electrodes. (paper)
[en] Guiding the self-assembly of identical building blocks towards complex three-dimensional structures with a set of desired properties is a major goal in material science, chemistry and physics. A particularly challenging problem, especially explored in synthetic chemistry, is that of self-assembling closed structures with a target topology starting by simple geometrical templates. Here we overview and revisit recent advancements, based on stochastic simulations, where the geometry of rigid helical templates with functionalised sticky ends has been designed for self-assembling efficiently and reproducibly into a wide range of three-dimensional closed structures. Notably, these include non trivial topologies of links and knots, including the 819 knot that we had predicted to be highly encodable and that has only recently been obtained experimentally. By appropriately tuning the parameters that define the template shape, we show that, for fixed concentration of templates, the assembly process can be directed towards the formation of specific knotted and linked structures such as the trefoils, pentafoil knots, Hopf and Solomon links. More exotic and unexpected knots and links are also found. Our results should be relevant to the design of new protocols that can both increase and broaden the population of synthetise molecular knots and catenanes. (special issue on statphys 26)
[en] The synthesis process of hydrogels based on using supramolecular chemistry as a core has attained much attention because it does not need complex operation and harsh reaction conditions whilst cucurbituril as the fourth generation of the host units has attracted much interest due to its unique characteristics. In this work, a supramolecular hydrogel was designed and prepared by using cucurbit urea and 4-arm-PEG as precursors. We firstly synthesized cucurbituril, 4-arm-PEG-BPY2+ and 4-arm-PEG-Pyr by condensation reaction and chemical cross-linking, and then used them to construct an ideally homogeneous three-dimensional network structure of hydrogels and meanwhile studied the mechanism and properties of the stable 1:1:1 ternary complex. And then mechanical and biological tests were conducted. The results showed that the obtained hydrogels not only had high mechanical strength but also good biocompatibility. Additionally, the result also showed that their ideal structures ware very suitable for drug-loading and drug-releasing. (paper)
[en] Nanofiber scaffolds are widely used as the platform for three-dimensional culture of hepatocytes in vitro. The pore size of scaffolds plays an important role in promoting the infiltration and proliferation of hepatocyte. We show that the average pore size of electrospun scaffold increases from ~ 7.6 to 13.2 μm, while the average fiber diameter decreases from ~ 2.0 to 1.5 μm when collected by probe array collectors. Though increase in pore size decreases the tensile stress of scaffolds, it leads to enhance the proliferation and attachment of hepatocytes. Specifically, a 6 × 6 array scaffold which was prepared by probe collector was orderly arrayed. Compared with the conventional scaffold, the pore size of the arrayed scaffold doubled and the hydrophilicity was improved. When HepG2 cells were seeded on the arrayed scaffold, cells showed superior adhesion ability, better cell morphology and three-dimensional growth. These results indicated that the ordered 6 × 6 array scaffold has the potential as a suitable substratum for in vitro culture of hepatocytes.
[en] We study a mixed tensor product of the three-dimensional fundamental representations of the Hopf algebra , whenever is not a root of unity. Formulas for the decomposition of tensor products of any simple and projective -module with the generating modules 3 and are obtained. The centralizer of on the mixed tensor product is calculated. It is shown to be the quotient of the quantum walled Brauer algebra . The structure of projective modules over is written down explicitly. It is known that the walled Brauer algebras form an infinite tower. We have calculated the corresponding restriction functors on simple and projective modules over . This result forms a crucial step in decomposition of the mixed tensor product as a bimodule over . We give an explicit bimodule structure for all .
[en] Teleseismic body wave traveltime tomography is used to inverse the three-dimensional seismic velocity structure beneath Shizigou in the western Qaidam basin. The travel time are picked from the continuous observation data on a small seismic array of stations deployed during 2004–2007. The tomographic results obtained indicate that a NW-trending low velocity anomaly just beneath the target region insert northeastwards with a high dip angle. In the north, northeast and east of the low velocity anomaly, some high-velocity anomalies distribute with the same strike and coverage as those of Shizigou anticline.