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1.
Simulacija procesa in gospodarnosti izločanja ogljikovega dioksida iz dimnih plinov termoelektrarn
Primož Kekec, 2012, undergraduate thesis

Abstract: V diplomskem delu je bil obravnavan proces za izločanje ogljikovega dioksida (CO2) iz dimnih plinov termoelektrarn, angleško imenovan »Calcium Looping« [7,21]. Ta proces je ena od možnih rešitev v sklopu tehnologij za tako imenovani CCS. Kar je angleška kratica za »Carbon Capture and Storage« in v prevodu pomeni zajem in shramba ogljika. Pri teh tehnologijah je CO2 izločen iz dimnih plinov, očiščen, utekočinjen, transportiran in shranjen na geološko primerni lokaciji. Cilj teh tehnologij je zmanjšanje CO2 izpustov, ki nastanejo pri zgorevanju fosilnih goriv. Koncentracija tega toplogrednega plina že sedaj v atmosferi previsoka in bo zaradi potrebe svetovnega prebivalstva po energiji, ta koncentracija le še naraščala. CCS predstavlja eno od možnih rešitev, zraven obnovljivih virov energije v izogib večjim klimatskim spremembam. Ob procesu »Calcium Looping« so tukaj še: izgorevanje v atmosferi »Oxy-fuel« [14], kemijsko ločevanje CO2 s pomočjo aminov [3], izgorevanje »Chemical Looping« [18] itd. »Calcium Looping« je krožni proces v katerega sta vezana reaktorja s tehnologijo zvrtinčenih plasti (angl. Fluidized bed). V prvem reaktorju, kateri se imenuje »Carbonator«, se CO2 veže s Kalcijevim oksidom (CaO) v apnenec (CaCO3), pri temperaturi med 600-700 °C. To je prikazano v reakciji št.1, ki je eksotermna. Kar pomeni da nastane toplota, ki se lahko uporabi za pridobivanje pare. CaO+〖CO〗_2→〖CaCO〗_3-∆H (Reakcija št. 1) 〖CaCO〗_3→CaO+〖CO〗_2+∆H (Reakcija št. 2) ∆H=168,5 [kJ/〖mol〗_CaO ] Mešanica plina in trdih delcev, ki ga turbulentna zvrtinčena plast odnaša iz reaktorja se loči v ciklonu. Plin se najprej ohladi, očisti prašnih delcev in je nato izpuščen v atmosfero. Trdna snov, ki je sestavljena iz apnenca in CaO se deloma ponovno vrne v »Carbonator« in deloma prenesena v drugi reaktor imenovan »Regenerator«, kjer se pri temperaturi med 850-900°C ponovno loči na CaO in CO2. Ta proces, ki je endotermni in porabi toploto iz okolice, je opisan v reakciji št. 2. Da zagotovimo dovolj visoko temperaturo in toploto za reakcijo moramo v tem reaktorju izvajat »Oxy-fuel« zgorevanje, kar pomeni da poteka v atmosferi iz kisika. Nastali plin, ki je v veliki meri sestavljen iz CO2 in vodne pare, ter CaO je vodeno do ciklona, kjer se ločita plin in trdna snov. Plin se nato ohladi, filtrira malih delcev, vodna para pa kondenzirana. CO2 se nato utekočini in je tako primeren za nadaljnji transport. Trdna snov sestavljena iz CaO se delno povrne v »Regenerator« in delno vodi v »Carbonator« tako, da se s tem zaključi krožni proces. Toplota, ki se odvaja pri ohlajanju izhodnih plinov iz obeh reaktorjev je prav tako primerna za pridobivanje pare. Za kontinuirano vodenje Calcium Looping procesa so bistvenega pomena tri veličine: Space Time (τ) Je veličina, ki opisuje maso CaO-a v reaktorju (nCaO) izraženo v molih, deljeno s plinskim tokom CO2 (FCO2) v vhodnem dimu izraženo z moli na uro. τ=n_CaO/F_(〖CO〗_2 ) ∙60 [min] To je teoretično potreben čas, da se CaO veže s CO2-jem v apnenec. Tem večji je »Space Time«, tem večji bo delež vezanega CO2-ja [9]. Iz teorije je razvidno, da mora ta čas biti vsaj 20 min, da se izloči željenih 90 % CO2-ja [27]. Looping Ratio (LR) Je razmerje toka CaO med »Regenerator«-jem in »Carbonator«-jem (FCaO), merjeno v molih na uro, deljeno s plinskim tokom CO2 (FCO2) v vhodnem dimu, izraženo prav tako v molih na uro. Looping ratio=F_CaO/F_(〖CO〗_2 ) Iz teorije je razvidno, da priporočljivo razmerje med 5-20, pri čemer večje razmerje pomeni večji odstotek vezanega CO2-ja kar pa je hkrati povezano z večjimi stroški [27]. Make-up Ratio Sposobnost vezanje in izločanja CaO s CO2 je sicer v teoriji krožni proces, a se v praksi ta zmanjšuje [8]. Zaradi tega se dodaja svež apnenec (Make up) in v enaki meri odvzema izrabljen. Ta »Make-up« se nastavi kot razmerje med tokom dodanega apnenca (FCaCO3) in plinskim tokom CO2-ja (F
Keywords: »Calcium Looping«, stroški proizvodnje električne energije, stroški izločanja CO2 iz dimnih plinov, apnenec, zajem in shramba ogljika
Published: 23.05.2012; Views: 1460; Downloads: 80
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2.
Calcium dependencies of regulated exocytosis in different endocrine cells
Jurij Dolenšek, Maša Skelin, Marjan Rupnik, 2011, review article

Abstract: Exocytotic machinery in neuronal and endocrine tissues is sensitive to changesin intracellular Ca2+ concentration. Endocrine cell models, that are most frequently used to study the mechanisms of regulated exocytosis, are pancreatic beta cells, adrenal chromaffin cells and pituitary cells. To reliably study the Ca2+ sensitivity in endocrine cells, accurate and fast determination of Ca2+ dependence in each tested cell is required. With slow photo-release it is possible to induce ramp-like increase in intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) that leads to a robust exocytotic activity. Slow increases in the [Ca2+]i revealed exocytotic phases with different Ca2+ sensitivities that have been largely masked in step-like flash photo-release experiments. Strikingly, in the cells of the three described model endocrine tissues (beta, chromaffin and melanotroph cells), distinct Ca2+ sensitivity ćclassesć of secretory vesicles have been observed: a highly Ca2+-sensitive, amedium Ca2+-sensitive and a low Ca2+- sensitive kinetic phase of secretory vesicle exocytosis. We discuss that a physiological modulation of a cellular activity, e.g. by activating cAMP/PKA transduction pathway, can switch the secretory vesicles between Ca2+ sensitivity classes. This significantly alterslate steps in the secretory release of hormones even without utilizationof an additional Ca2+ sensor protein.
Keywords: Calcium sensitivity, Exocytosis, Insulin-secreting cells, Chromaffin cells, Melanotrophs
Published: 05.06.2012; Views: 1017; Downloads: 25
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3.
Cellular diversity promotes intercellular Ca[sup]2+ wave propagation
Marko Gosak, 2009, original scientific article

Abstract: Calcium ions are an important second messenger in living cells. Calcium signals in form of waves serve as a means of intercellular communication and thus represent a vibrant subject for experimental and theoretical investigations. Here we study the role of cellular variability on the occurrence of ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ wave propagation in a net of diffusively coupled cells. Dynamics of individual cells is simulated by a mathematical model for ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations. Structural diversity of cells is introduced via variations of the bifurcation parameters, which signify cell sensitivity for external stimulation. Remarkably, for sufficient values of variability ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ waves emerge, which are mostly ordered for intermediate variability strength. We analyze the spatial profile via the autocorrelation function, which confirms aresonance-like response due to the cellular variability. Thus, the reported phenomenon is a novel observation of diversity-induced spatial coherence resonance in a tissue-like media.
Keywords: dynamic systems, waves, calcium oscillations, resonance, diversity-induced resonance, cellular variability, coupled cells, intracellular processes
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 984; Downloads: 11
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4.
Establishing the stochastic nature of intracellular calcium oscillations from experimental data
Matjaž Perc, Anne K. Green, C. Jane Dixon, Marko Marhl, 2008, original scientific article

Abstract: Calcium has been established as a key messenger in both intra- and intercellular signaling. Experimentally observed intracellular calcium responses to different agonists show a variety of behaviors from simple spiking to complex oscillatory regimes. Here we study typical experimental traces of calcium oscillations in hepatocytes obtained in response to phenylephrine and ATP. The traces were analyzed with methods of nonlinear time series analysis in order to determine the stochastic/deterministic nature of the intracellular calcium oscillations. Despite the fact that the oscillations appear, visually, to be deterministic yet perturbed by noise, our analyses provide strong evidence that the measured calcium traces in hepatocytes are prevalently of stochastic nature. In particular, bursting calcium oscillations are temporally correlated Gaussian series distorted by a monotonic, instantaneous, time-independent function, whilst the spiking behavior appears to have a dynamical nonlinear component whereby the overall determinism level is still low. The biological importance of this finding is discussed in relation to the mechanisms incorporated in mathematical models as well as the role of stochasticity and determinism at cellular and tissue levels which resemble typical statistical and thermodynamic effects in physics.
Keywords: dynamic systems, stochastic processes, cellular signaling, calcium oscillations, time series analyses, noise, temporal correlation
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 1051; Downloads: 76
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5.
MLC-kinase/phosphatase control of Ca[sup]2+ signal transduction in airway smooth muscles
Aleš Fajmut, Milan Brumen, 2008, original scientific article

Abstract: In airway smooth muscles, kinase/phosphatase-dependent phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of the myosin light chain (MLC) have been revealed by many authors as important steps in calcium ▫$(Ca^{2+})$▫ signalling pathway from the variation of ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ concentration in cytosol to the force development. Here, a theoretical analysis of the control action of MLC-kinase (MLCK) and MLC-phosphatase (MLCP) in ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ signalling is presented and related to the general control principles of these enzymes, which were previously studied by Reinhart Heinrich and his co-workers. The kinetic scheme of the mathematical model considers interactions among ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫, calmodulin (CaM) and MLCK and the well-known 4-state actomyosin latch bridge model, whereby a link between them is accomplished by the conservation relation of all species of MLCK. The mathematical model predicts the magnitude and velocity of isometric force in smooth muscles upon transient biphasic ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ signal. The properties of signal transduction in the system such as the signalling time, signal duration and signal amplitude, which are reflected in the properties of force developed, are studied by the principles of the metabolic control theory. The analysis of our model predictions confirms as shown by Reinhart Heinrich and his co-workers that MLCK controls the amplitude of signal more than its duration, whereas MLCP controls both. Finally, the simulations of elevated total content of MLCK, a typical feature of bronchial muscles of asthmatic subjects and spontaneously hypertensive rats as well as potentiation of MLCP catalytic activity, are carried out and are discussed in view of an increase in the force magnitude.
Keywords: cells, calcium, calcium oscillations, myosin light chains, enzyme activities, mathematical models
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 1174; Downloads: 9
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6.
Spatio-temporal modelling explains the effect of reduced plasma membrane Ca[sup]2+[/sup] efflux on intracellular Ca[sup]2+[/sup] oscillations in hepatocytes
Marko Marhl, Marko Gosak, Matjaž Perc, C. Jane Dixon, Anne K. Green, 2008, original scientific article

Abstract: In many non-excitable eukaryotic cells, including hepatocytes, ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations play a key role in intra- and intercellular signalling, thus regulating many cellular processes from fertilisation to death. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms underlying these oscillations, and consequently understanding how they may be regulated, is of great interest. In this paper, we study the influence of reduced ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ plasma membrane efflux on ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations in hepatocytes. Our previous experiments with carboxyeosin show that a reduced plasma membrane ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ efflux increases the frequency of ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations, but does not affect the duration of individual transients. This phenomenon can be best explained by taking into account not only the temporal,but also the spatial dynamics underlying the generation of ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations in the cell. Here we divide the cell into a grid of elements and treat the ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ dynamics as a spatio-temporal phenomenon. By converting an existing temporal model into a spatio-temporal one, we obtain theoretical predictions that are in much better agreement with the experimental observations.
Keywords: cellular signalling, calcium oscillations, intracellular oscilations, spatio-temporal dynamics, hepatocytes, stochastic simulations
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 848; Downloads: 15
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7.
Role of cascades in converting oscillatory signals into stationary step-like responses
Marko Marhl, Vladimir Grubelnik, 2007, original scientific article

Abstract: In biological signal transduction pathways intermediates are often oscillatory and need to be converted into smooth output signals at the end. We show by mathematical modelling that protein kinase cascades enable converting oscillatory signals into sharp stationary step-like outputs. The importance of this result is demonstrated for the switch-like protein activation by calcium oscillations, which is of biological importance for regulating different cellular processes. In addition, we found that protein kinase cascades cause memory effects in the protein activation, which might be of a physiological advantage since a smaller amount of calcium transported in the cell is required for an effective activation of cellular processes.
Keywords: physics, calcium oscillations, mathematical modelling, calcium, calcium oscillations, sygnalling cascade, protein kinase cascades, signal transduction, ultrasensitivity, biochemical switch, cellular dynamics
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 1090; Downloads: 38
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8.
Noise-induced spatial dynamics in the presence of memory loss
Matjaž Perc, Marko Marhl, 2007, original scientific article

Abstract: We study the spatial dynamics of noise-induced waves in two-dimensional excitable media in dependence on the duration of the artificially imposed refractory time that is introduced to each constitutive system unit after an excitation. Due to the introduction of refractory times, a randomly induced spatial wave is temporarily unable to transmit information to the opposite site of its propagation direction. Thus, once the wave leaves the absorbing boundaries of the spatial grid the system has little or no recollection, depending on the duration of the refractory time, of its existence. We show that even in the presence of such memory loss, self-organization of excitatory events leads to noise-induced spatial periodicity in the media. We present a simple analytical treatment of a two-unit system to capture and explain the essence of the observed phenomenon. Since refractory times are widespread in biological systems, our results provide interesting insights into functioning of real-life organisms at the cellular as well as tissue level.
Keywords: noise, spatiotemporal noise, intensity, pattern formation, refractory time, calcium oscillations
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 1107; Downloads: 62
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9.
Selective regulation of protein activity by complex Ca[sup]2+ oscillations : a theoretical study
Beate Knoke, Marko Marhl, Stefan Schuster, 2007, independent scientific component part or a chapter in a monograph

Abstract: Calcium oscillations play an important role in intracellular signal transduction. As a second messenger, ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ represents a link between several input signals and several target processes in the cell. Whereas the frequency of simple ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations enables a selective activation of a specific protein and herewith a particular process, the question arises of how at the same time two or more classes of proteins can be specifically regulated. The question is general and concerns the problem of how one second messenger can transmit more than one signal simultaneously (bow-tie structure of signalling). To investigate whether a complex ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ signal like bursting, a succession of low-peak and high-peak oscillatory phases, could selectively activate different proteins, several bursting patterns with simplified square pulses were applied in a theoretical model. The results indicate that bursting ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations allow a differential regulation of two different calcium-binding proteins, and hence, perform the desired function.
Keywords: biophysics, calcium oscillations, cellular dynamics, mathematical models, signalling, bow-tie structures, bursting, decoding
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 1033; Downloads: 10
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10.
Theoretical and experimental investigation of calcium-contraction coupling in airway smooth muscle
Prisca Mbikou, Aleš Fajmut, Milan Brumen, Etienne Roux, 2006, original scientific article

Abstract: We investigated theoretically and experimentally the ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫-contraction couplingin rat tracheal smooth muscle. ▫$[Ca^{2+}]_i$▫, isometric contraction and myosin light chain (MLC) phosphorylation were measured in response to 1 mM carbachol. Theoretical modeling consisted in coupling a model of ▫$Ca^{2+}-dependent$▫ MLC kinase (MLCK) activation with a four-state model of smooth muscle contractile apparatus. Stimulation resulted in a short-time contraction obtained within 1 min, followed by a long-time contraction up to the maximal force obtained in 30 min. ML-7 and Wortmannin (MLCK inhibitors) abolished the contraction. Chelerythrine (PKC inhibitor) did not change the short-time, but reduced the long-time contraction. ▫$[Ca^{2+}]_i$▫ responses of isolated myocytes recorded during the first 90 s consisted in a fast peak, followed by a plateau phase and, in 28 % of the cells, superimposed ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ oscillations. MLC phosphorylation was maximal at 5 s and then decreased, whereas isometric contraction followed a Hill-shaped curve. The model properlypredicts the time course of MLC phosphorylation and force of the short-time response. With oscillating ▫$Ca^{2+}$▫ signal, the predicted force does not oscillate. According to the model, the amplitude of the plateau and the frequency of oscillations encode for the amplitude of force, whereas the peak encodes for force velocity. The long-time phase of the contraction, associated with a second increase in MLC phosphorylation, may be explained, at least partially, by MLC phosphatase (MLCP) inhibition, possibly via PKC inhibition.
Keywords: biophysics, mathematical modelling, modelling, calcium oscillations, contractions, force development, muscle cells, smooth muscles, myosin kinase
Published: 07.06.2012; Views: 961; Downloads: 54
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