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  1. Spectral line shapes provide a window into the local environment coupled to a quantum transition in the condensed phase. In this paper, we build upon a stochastic model to account for non-stationary background processes produced by broad-band pulsed laser stimulation, as distinguished from those for stationary phonon bath. In particular, we consider the contribution of pair-fluctuations arising from the full bosonic many-body Hamiltonian within a mean-field approximation, treating the coupling to the system as a stochastic noise term. Using the Itô transformation, we consider two limiting cases for our model, which lead to a connection between the observed spectral fluctuationsmore »and the spectral density of the environment. In the first case, we consider a Brownian environment and show that this produces spectral dynamics that relax to form dressed excitonic states and recover an Anderson–Kubo-like form for the spectral correlations. In the second case, we assume that the spectrum is Anderson–Kubo like and invert to determine the corresponding background. Using the Jensen inequality, we obtain an upper limit for the spectral density for the background. The results presented here provide the technical tools for applying the stochastic model to a broad range of problems.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 7, 2023
  2. Two PIEZO mechanosensitive cation channels, PIEZO1 and PIEZO2, have been identified in mammals, where they are involved in numerous sensory processes. While structurally similar, PIEZO channels are expressed in distinct tissues and exhibit unique properties. How different PIEZOs transduce force, how their transduction mechanism varies, and how their unique properties match the functional needs of the distinct tissues where they are expressed remain all-important unanswered questions. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has a single PIEZO ortholog (pezo-1) predicted to have twelve isoforms. These isoforms share many transmembrane domains, but differ in those that distinguish PIEZO1 and PIEZO2 in mammals. Here wemore »use translational and transcriptional reporters to show that long pezo-1 isoforms are selectively expressed in mesodermally derived tissues (such as muscle and glands). In contrast, shorter pezo-1 isoforms are primarily expressed in neurons. In the digestive system, different pezo-1 isoforms appear to be expressed in different cells of the same organ. We show that pharyngeal muscles, glands, and valve rely on long pezo-1 isoforms to respond appropriately to the presence of food. The unique pattern of complementary expression of pezo-1 isoforms suggest that different isoforms possess distinct functions. The number of pezo-1 isoforms in C. elegans, their differential pattern of expression, and their roles in experimentally tractable processes make this an attractive system to investigate the molecular basis for functional differences between members of the PIEZO family of mechanoreceptors.« less
  3. Dinoflagellates of the Symbiodiniaceae family encompass diverse symbionts that are critical to corals and other species living in coral reefs. It is well known that sexual reproduction enhances adaptive evolution in changing environments. Although genes related to meiotic functions were reported in Symbiodiniaceae, cytological evidence of meiosis and fertilisation are however yet to be observed in these taxa. Using transcriptome and genome data from 21 Symbiodiniaceae isolates, we studied genes that encode proteins associated with distinct stages of meiosis and syngamy. We report the absence of genes that encode main components of the synaptonemal complex (SC), a protein structure thatmore »mediates homologous chromosomal pairing and class I crossovers. This result suggests an independent loss of canonical SCs in the alveolates, that also includes the SC-lacking ciliates. We hypothesise that this loss was due in part to permanently condensed chromosomes and repeat-rich sequences in Symbiodiniaceae (and other dinoflagellates) which favoured the SC-independent class II crossover pathway. Our results reveal novel insights into evolution of the meiotic molecular machinery in the ecologically important Symbiodiniaceae and in other eukaryotes.« less
  4. This book bridges the gap between life sciences and physical sciences by providing several perspectives on cellular and molecular mechanics on a fundamental level. It begins with a general introduction to the scales and terms that are used in the field of cellular and molecular biomechanics and then moves from the molecular scale to the tissue scale. It discusses various tissues or cellular systems through the chapters written by prominent engineers and physicists working in various fields of biomechanics.