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  1. Abstract Direct tests of gene function have historically been performed in a limited number of model organisms. The CRISPR/Cas system is species-agnostic, offering the ability to manipulate genes in a range of models, enabling insights into evolution, development, and physiology. Astatotilapia burtoni , a cichlid fish from the rivers and shoreline around Lake Tanganyika, has been extensively studied in the laboratory to understand evolution and the neural control of behavior. Here we develop protocols for the creation of CRISPR-edited cichlids and create a broadly useful mutant line. By manipulating the Tyrosinase gene, which is necessary for eumelanin pigment production, wemore »describe a fast and reliable approach to quantify and optimize gene editing efficiency. Tyrosinase mutants also remove a major obstruction to imaging, enabling visualization of subdermal structures and fluorophores in situ. These protocols will facilitate broad application of CRISPR/Cas9 to studies of cichlids as well as other non-traditional model aquatic species.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2022
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  5. The effect of turbulence on snow precipitation is not incorporated into present weather forecasting models. Here we show evidence that turbulence is in fact a key influence on both fall speed and spatial distribution of settling snow. We consider three snowfall events under vastly different levels of atmospheric turbulence. We characterize the size and morphology of the snow particles, and we simultaneously image their velocity, acceleration and relative concentration over vertical planes approximately $30\ \textrm {m}^2$ in area. We find that turbulence-driven settling enhancement explains otherwise contradictory trends between the particle size and velocity. The estimates of the Stokes numbermore »and the correlation between vertical velocity and local concentration are consistent with the view that the enhanced settling is rooted in the preferential sweeping mechanism. When the snow vertical velocity is large compared to the characteristic turbulence velocity, the crossing trajectories effect results in strong accelerations. When the conditions of preferential sweeping are met, the concentration field is highly non-uniform and clustering appears over a wide range of scales. These clusters, identified for the first time in a naturally occurring flow, display the signature features seen in canonical settings: power-law size distribution, fractal-like shape, vertical elongation and large fall speed that increases with the cluster size. These findings demonstrate that the fundamental phenomenology of particle-laden turbulence can be leveraged towards a better predictive understanding of snow precipitation and ground snow accumulation. They also demonstrate how environmental flows can be used to investigate dispersed multiphase flows at Reynolds numbers not accessible in laboratory experiments or numerical simulations.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 10, 2022
  6. It is well known that an excess of hydroxyl radicals (˙OH) in the human body is responsible for oxidative stress-related diseases. An understanding of the relationship between the concentration of ˙OH and those diseases could contribute to better diagnosis and prevention. Here we present a supersensitive nanosensor integrated with an electrochemical method to measure the concentration of ˙OH in vitro. The electrochemical sensor consists of a composite comprised of ultrasmall cerium oxide nanoclusters (<2 nm) grafted to a highly conductive carbon deposited on a screen-printed carbon electrode (SPCE). Cyclic voltammetry (CV) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) were used to analyzemore »the interaction between cerium oxide nanoclusters and ˙OH. The CV results demonstrated that this electrochemical sensor had the capacity of detecting ˙OH with a high degree of accuracy and selectivity, achieving a consistent performance. Additionally, EIS results confirmed that our electrochemical sensor was able to differentiate ˙OH from hydrogen peroxide (H 2 O 2 ), which is another common reactive oxygen species (ROS) found in the human body. The limit of detection (LOD) observed with this electrochemical sensor was of 0.6 μM. Furthermore, this nanosized cerium oxide-based electrochemical sensor successfully detected in vitro the presence of ˙OH in preosteoblast cells from newborn mouse bone tissue. The supersensitive electrochemical sensor is expected to be beneficially used in multiple applications, including medical diagnosis, fuel–cell technology, and food and cosmetic industries.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 12, 2022