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Theses/Dissertations

2014

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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Investigation Of Secondary Organic Aerosol Formation From Different Sources And Ambient Environments, Amber Marie Ortega Dec 2014

Investigation Of Secondary Organic Aerosol Formation From Different Sources And Ambient Environments, Amber Marie Ortega

Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences Graduate Theses & Dissertations

To investigate atmospheric processing of direct urban and biomass burning emissions, I modified and deployed an oxidation flow reactor with submicron aerosol size and chemical composition measurements during FLAME-3, a biomass-burning study at USDA Fire Sciences Laboratory in Missoula, MT, and CalNex, a field study investigating the nexus of air quality and climate change at a receptor site in the LA-Basin at Pasadena, CA. The reactor produces OH concentrations up to 4 orders of magnitude higher than in ambient air, achieving aging by OH reactions in less than 5 minutes that is equivalent to ~2 weeks in the atmosphere. The ...


Rice And Mouse Quantitative Phenotype Prediction In Genome-Wide Association Studies With Support Vector Regression, Abdulrhman Fahad M. Aljouie Dec 2014

Rice And Mouse Quantitative Phenotype Prediction In Genome-Wide Association Studies With Support Vector Regression, Abdulrhman Fahad M. Aljouie

Theses

Quantitative phenotypes prediction from genotype data is significant for pathogenesis, crop yields, and immunity tests. The scientific community conducted many studies to find unobserved quantitative phenotype high predictive ability models. Early genome-wide association studies (GWAS) focused on genetic variants that are associated with disease or phenotype, however, these variants manly covers small portion of the whole genetic variance, and therefore, the effectiveness of predictions obtained using this information may possibly be circumscribed [ 1 ].

Instead, this study shows prediction ability from whole genome single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) data of 1940 genotyped stoke mouse with - 12k SNPs, and 413 genotyped rice inbred ...


Cancer Risk Prediction With Next Generation Sequencing Data Using Machine Learning, Nihir Patel Dec 2014

Cancer Risk Prediction With Next Generation Sequencing Data Using Machine Learning, Nihir Patel

Theses

The use of computational biology for next generation sequencing (NGS) analysis is rapidly increasing in genomics research. However, the effectiveness of NGS data to predict disease abundance is yet unclear. This research investigates the problem in the whole exome NGS data of the chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) available at dbGaP. Initially, raw reads from samples are aligned to the human reference genome using burrows wheeler aligner. From the samples, structural variants, namely, Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) and Insertion Deletion (INDEL) are identified and are filtered using SAMtools as well as with Genome Analyzer Tool Kit (GATK). Subsequently, the variants are ...


Mechanisms Of Translational Repression Of The Sperm Mitochondria Associated-Cysteine Rich Protein (Smcp) Mrna In Round Spermatids, Danielle L. Cullinane Dec 2014

Mechanisms Of Translational Repression Of The Sperm Mitochondria Associated-Cysteine Rich Protein (Smcp) Mrna In Round Spermatids, Danielle L. Cullinane

Graduate Doctoral Dissertations

The sperm-mitochondria-associated cysteine-rich protein (SMCP) is a male germ cell-specific protein that localizes to the outer membranes of sperm mitochondria and increases sperm motility. The Smcp mRNA is transcribed in early spermatids, and stored in a translationally repressed state for ~7 days before translation is activated in late spermatids. Identifying the cis-elements and trans-factors that repress the Smcp mRNA in early spermatids is important because these factors and elements coordinate the translational activity of hundreds of mRNAs.

A mutation was studied in transgenic mice in which the 16 nucleotides downstream of the first poly(A) signal in the ...


E Pluribus Unum: What Individual Whales Can Tell Us About Enigmatic Species Distribution And Social Organization, Tanya Marie Lubansky Dec 2014

E Pluribus Unum: What Individual Whales Can Tell Us About Enigmatic Species Distribution And Social Organization, Tanya Marie Lubansky

Dissertations

Large whales have historically been difficult to study and many aspects of their ecology remain unknown especially at the long -term population level. The ability to identify individual whales based on natural markings provides the opportunity to track individuals over time and space; this data may offer more insight into the ecology of whales than previously imagined. This study demonstrates use of photo-identification data to model both social structure and habitat selection, minimizing the need for invasive research and greatly increasing the sample size used in such endeavors. A conditional logistic model is written for a 20-year sightings dataset on ...


When You Can't Watch What You Eat: Examining The Fda’S Recall Process For Food Allergies, Jacob Passy Dec 2014

When You Can't Watch What You Eat: Examining The Fda’S Recall Process For Food Allergies, Jacob Passy

Capstones

Over a third of all recalls for food products in the United States occur due to an undeclared allergen. In these situations, a food product is often mislabeled or contaminated in some way, resulting in the unknown presence of allergen. For food-allergic consumers, a company's mistake can become life-threatening. By investigating data from the Food and Drug Administration, I found that supermarket chains are responsible for about a fifth of all recalls, and that many recalls occur past the product's expiration date. These factors point to the need to improve the FDA's handling of food allergies in ...


No Waste: Nyc, Minda Smiley Dec 2014

No Waste: Nyc, Minda Smiley

Capstones

I produced three video pieces about people who are living zero-waste lifestyles or using zero-waste practices in their businesses. I also wrote a narrative piece about my experience living zero-waste for one week.


The Wild West Of Edible Insects, Kyle Ligman Dec 2014

The Wild West Of Edible Insects, Kyle Ligman

Capstones

After the UN came out with a report in 2013 recommending insects for human consumption, businesses and restaurants in the U.S. have been racing to grow a new industry. This project explores the psychological, regulatory and production challenges they face.


Plasma And Skeletal Muscle Matrix Metalloproteinase-9 Response To Eccentric Exercise-Induced Injury In Humans, Molly Catherine Welsh Dec 2014

Plasma And Skeletal Muscle Matrix Metalloproteinase-9 Response To Eccentric Exercise-Induced Injury In Humans, Molly Catherine Welsh

Integrative Physiology Graduate Theses & Dissertations

Exercise induced muscle injury is a phenomenon that most adults have experienced when beginning a new or novel exercise program. It is perceived as muscle soreness developing 24-48 hours after completion of the exercise task. The role of the muscle extracellular matrix (ECM) in remodeling of muscle during the repair process following injury has recently become a focus of this area of research. Key to the remodeling of the ECM is the inducible protease, matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) that preferentially degrades type IV collagen of the ECM. Animal models have provided support for MMP-9 in this remodeling process but the role ...


Epigenetic Regulation Of Nuclear Hormone Receptor Dax-1, Michael B. Heskett Dec 2014

Epigenetic Regulation Of Nuclear Hormone Receptor Dax-1, Michael B. Heskett

Master's Theses

DAX-1 (NR0B1) is an orphan nuclear receptor that plays a key role in the development and maintenance of steroidogenic tissue in mammals. Dax-1 is also expressed in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells and is required to maintain pluripotency. Duplication of the X-chromosome in the region containing the NR0B1 gene results in sex reversal, and mutations in NR0B1 cause adrenal hypoplasia congenita. DAX-1 has been observed to act as a corepressor of other nuclear receptors including androgen receptor (AR), estrogen receptor (ER), and steroidogenic factor 1 (SF-1). In addition to pluripotent ES cells, DAX-1 is primarily expressed in select tissues of ...


Mirage Dna Transposon Silencing By C. Elegans Condensin Ii Subunit Hcp-6: A Masters Thesis, Anna Malinkevich Dec 2014

Mirage Dna Transposon Silencing By C. Elegans Condensin Ii Subunit Hcp-6: A Masters Thesis, Anna Malinkevich

GSBS Dissertations and Theses

Mobile genetic elements represent a large portion of the genome in many species. Posing a danger to the integrity of genetic information, silencing and structural machinery has evolved to suppress the mobility of foreign and transposable elements within the genome. Condensin proteins – which regulate chromosome structure to promote chromosome segregation – have been demonstrated to function in repetitive gene regulation and transposon silencing in several species. In model system Caenorhabditis elegans, microarray analysis studies have implicated Condensin II subunit HCP-6 in the silencing of multiple loci, including DNA transposon MIRAGE. To address the hypothesis that HCP-6 has a direct function in ...


Alternative Extraction Method Of Guanidine Metabolites From Marine Sponge, Ptilocaulis Spiculifer, Savannah Barnett, Andrew A. Yeagley, Amorette Barber Dec 2014

Alternative Extraction Method Of Guanidine Metabolites From Marine Sponge, Ptilocaulis Spiculifer, Savannah Barnett, Andrew A. Yeagley, Amorette Barber

Theses, Dissertations & Honors Papers

Marine sponges are known for their use of biologically active allelopathic compounds. With almost every species of sponge having been shown to produce some chemical with medicinal properties, their survival is becoming increasingly important. Current extraction methods used by research teams require a large sample relative to the size of the sponge, which threatens the survival of the organism. 1 Ptilocaulis sp., or the orange tree sponge, is known to produce guanidine metabolites. This derivative has demonstrated biological activity against cell lines of leukemia, uterine, and cervical cancer.2 3 In this study we have developed a method for the ...


Determination Of The Effectiveness Of The Zetroz Wearable Ultrasound Device (Sam) For The Post-Exercise Clearance Of Lactic Acid, Theresa Rakiewicz Dec 2014

Determination Of The Effectiveness Of The Zetroz Wearable Ultrasound Device (Sam) For The Post-Exercise Clearance Of Lactic Acid, Theresa Rakiewicz

Senior Honors Theses

Athletes performing in multiple round competitions seek rapid recovery from exercise and restoration of optimal muscle function. The increase in blood lactic acid concentration while performing intense exercise has been well documented; however interventions have not demonstrated the ability to significantly improve lactate removal beyond that of passive recovery. Low intensity therapeutic ultrasound has been previously shown to increase blood flow, fluid circulation, vasodilation, and cellular metabolism. PURPOSE: To determine if wearing a long-duration ultrasound therapy device on muscles can accelerate lactic acid kinetics to promote clearance from blood. METHODS: A randomized, double blind cross-over study utilizing a lactate-inducing circuit ...


Chromatin Regulators And Dna Repair: A Dissertation, Gwendolyn M. Bennett Dec 2014

Chromatin Regulators And Dna Repair: A Dissertation, Gwendolyn M. Bennett

GSBS Dissertations and Theses

DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair is essential for maintenance of genome stability. However, the compaction of the eukaryotic genome into chromatin creates an inherent barrier to any DNA-mediated event, such as during DNA repair. This demands that there be mechanisms to modify the chromatin structure and thus access DNA. Recent work has implicated a host of chromatin regulators in the DNA damage response and several functional roles have been defined. Yet the mechanisms that control their recruitment to DNA lesions, and their relationship with concurrent histone modifications, remain unclear. We find that efficient DSB recruitment of many yeast chromatin regulators ...


Attentional Blink: An Antecedent To Binge Eating Behavior, Gregory Denke Dec 2014

Attentional Blink: An Antecedent To Binge Eating Behavior, Gregory Denke

University of New Orleans Theses and Dissertations

This study examined how attentional sub-processes contribute to binge-eating. Dense-array EEG and a version of the canonical attentional blink task were used to ascertain the neural correlates underlying the attentional sub-processes that comprise the Posner model of attention (alerting, orienting, and executive control) and how attentional activation differs for binge-eaters vs. non-binge eaters. Furthermore, we examined a number of the event-related potentials (ERP), including P2 activation, which has been linked with orientating of attention, and N2 activation which has been linked with attentional conflict. We found decreased P2 activation for binge-eaters, in the negative condition, for incorrect target 2 (T2 ...


Higher-Order Unfolding Of Peri/Centric Satellite Heterochromatin Is An Early And Consistent Event In Cell Senescence: A Dissertation, Eric C. Swanson Dec 2014

Higher-Order Unfolding Of Peri/Centric Satellite Heterochromatin Is An Early And Consistent Event In Cell Senescence: A Dissertation, Eric C. Swanson

GSBS Dissertations and Theses

Cellular senescence is thought to play an essential role in many biological functions including tumor suppression and organismal aging. Senescent cells, which are permanently removed from the cell cycle, can be found both in vivo in many different tissue types and in vitro within cultures of non-immortalized cells. Despite their inability to proliferate, these cells persist and remain metabolically active for indefinite periods of time. This physiologic process occurs in response to a variety of cellular insults including oxidative stress, shortened telomeres, constitutive oncogene expression, and DNA damage, and can be initiated by upregulation of one of the two known ...


Role Of Peptidoglycan Modifications In Predation By Bdellovibrio Bacteriovorus 109j, Diane C. Szmiett Dec 2014

Role Of Peptidoglycan Modifications In Predation By Bdellovibrio Bacteriovorus 109j, Diane C. Szmiett

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus is a prey dependent bacterium that traverses the outer membrane and peptidoglycan, and enters the periplasmic space of gram negative bacteria, from where it utilizes the cytoplasmic contents for growth. Soluble lytic transglycosylases could be responsible for creating the entry pore during predation. Bacteria can modify their peptidoglycan by the addition of acetate to the C-6 hydroxyl group of the N-acetylmuramic acid residues, which renders the peptidoglycan insensitive to cleavage by lytic transglycosylases. It was hypothesized that the degree of peptidoglycan O-acetylation of the prey cell affects predation efficiency. In this study it was shown that ...


Mechanisms Of Condition-Specific Regulation Of Mrna Stability By Puf Proteins: From Yeast To Humans, Joseph Russo Dec 2014

Mechanisms Of Condition-Specific Regulation Of Mrna Stability By Puf Proteins: From Yeast To Humans, Joseph Russo

Dissertations

RNA binding proteins regulate mRNA decay and translation, two key steps in the control of gene expression in cells. Controlling mRNA metabolism allows cells to respond rapidly to altering conditions by utilizing already available mRNA, bypassing the wait for newly transcribed mRNA. The Puf family of RNA binding proteins bind specific mRNAs through interactions with sequences located in the 3’ untranslated region (UTR). Puf proteins are conserved throughout eukaryotes and have diverse roles including stem cell maintenance, neuronal development, stress response and organelle biogenesis. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Puf proteins are conditionally regulated in response to the cells metabolic. Specifically, in ...


Production And Applications Of Formaldehyde-Free Phenolic Resins Using 5-Hydroxymethylfurfural Derived From Glucose In-Situ, Yongsheng Zhang Dec 2014

Production And Applications Of Formaldehyde-Free Phenolic Resins Using 5-Hydroxymethylfurfural Derived From Glucose In-Situ, Yongsheng Zhang

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

The phenol-formaldehyde (PF) resin manufacturing industry is facing a growing challenge with respect to concerns over human health, due to the use of carcinogenic formaldehyde and sustainability due to the use of petroleum-based phenol in PF resin manufacture. Glucose and its derivative, 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (5-HMF), have proven to be potential substitutes for formaldehyde in the synthesis of phenolic novolac resins.

This thesis investigated a number of glucose and 5-HMF resin systems including the curing of phenol-glucose novolac resin (PG) with a bis-phenol-A type epoxy. The curing process was modeled according to the Sestak-Berggren equation (S, B) using Málek methods. This was ...


A Description Of Tolerance To Apical Meristem Damage In Wild Populations Of Arabidopsis Thaliana And Its Genetic Basis, Justin Dalrymple Dec 2014

A Description Of Tolerance To Apical Meristem Damage In Wild Populations Of Arabidopsis Thaliana And Its Genetic Basis, Justin Dalrymple

Biology Theses

Since plants cannot actively avoid herbivory, they rely on two primary strategies to maintain their fitness in the face of herbivore pressure: resistance—the deterrence of herbivory via physical and chemical means—and tolerance—recuperation of aboveground mass after herbivory. Although diverse groups have been shown to be tolerant to herbivory, mechanisms of tolerance are not yet well known. There is also very little known about the ecological relevance of tolerance strategies in wild populations. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the apical meristem suppresses growth of axillary meristems to a high degree under normal conditions, but a number of axillary meristemswill grow ...


Biological And Physiological Condition Of Juvenile California Halibut (Paralichthys Californicus) Exposed To A Contamination Gradient In Mission Bay, Ca, Kevin Stolzenbach Dec 2014

Biological And Physiological Condition Of Juvenile California Halibut (Paralichthys Californicus) Exposed To A Contamination Gradient In Mission Bay, Ca, Kevin Stolzenbach

Theses

Contaminated sediments in marine environments have been shown to be good indicators of ecological risk and a means to assess anthropogenic impacts on marine habitats and the animals that inhabit them (Long et al. 1995, Rattner 2009). Estuarine sediments are especially complex media with regard to physical, chemical, and biological characteristics that trap, store, modify and sometimes release contaminants to the biota (Long et al. 1995). Especially vulnerable are animals that are in constant contact with the sediments, such as flatfishes that partially bury themselves for camouflage (Costa et al. 2011). Impacts can be assessed in a number of ways ...


Response Of Soil Nitrification To The Veterinary Pharmaceuticals Monensin, Ivermectin And Zinc Bacitracin, Magda A. Konopka Dec 2014

Response Of Soil Nitrification To The Veterinary Pharmaceuticals Monensin, Ivermectin And Zinc Bacitracin, Magda A. Konopka

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Pharmaceutical residues can reach agricultural land through amendment with animal or human waste. Since 2010, a series of replicated plots received annual applications of ivermectin, monensin and zinc bacitracin, either singly or in a mixture, at 0.1 mg/kg and 10 mg/kg concentrations. I collected soil samples before and after the fourth annual application of pharmaceuticals and assayed them for functional changes and amoA gene abundance, a gene needed for ammonia oxidation. In 2013, I exposed the soils to 100 mg/kg in a laboratory experiment which resulted in acceleration of nitrification. Under 10 mg/kg treatments in ...


Determining The Critical Window Of Influence Of Pcb Perinatally On Behavioral And Hormonal Development In Sprague-Dawley Rat Pups, Natalie Sommerville, Lee A. Meserve, Howard C. Cromwell Dec 2014

Determining The Critical Window Of Influence Of Pcb Perinatally On Behavioral And Hormonal Development In Sprague-Dawley Rat Pups, Natalie Sommerville, Lee A. Meserve, Howard C. Cromwell

Honors Projects

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) had widespread use in the United States in commercial manufacturing in the United States until the late 1970s. Even though they were banned, measurable amounts can still be found in the environment and food sources. PCB has known effects on altering hormone development and behavior in the species Rattus norvegicus. To determine the most crucial developmental time of exposure to PCB in Sprague-Dawley rat pups, rat pups were exposed to PCB at differing weeks of either gestation period or the first postnatal week. Behavioral tests were performed for the different rat pups, as well as blood serum ...


Marine Population Connectivity: Range Boundaries And Climate Change, Rhiannon Leigh Rognstad Dec 2014

Marine Population Connectivity: Range Boundaries And Climate Change, Rhiannon Leigh Rognstad

Theses and Dissertations

Population connectivity, particularly in open systems, is an important metric for understanding population-level processes on both ecological and evolutionary timescales. In coastal marine systems, adults are typically sedentary and dispersal occurs primarily during a larval stage when individuals are transported in ocean currents. Because coastal marine populations exist as networks of interconnected subpopulations, variation in the magnitude and extent of population connectivity can have profound effects on population dynamics and species distribution limits. Connectivity is a complex process, affected by a multitude of factors, including adult inputs and physical dispersal, which operate at multiple scales and may interact. This dissertation ...


Origin Of Maternal Age Effect In Congenital Heart Disease Risk For Offspring, Claire Elaine Schulkey Dec 2014

Origin Of Maternal Age Effect In Congenital Heart Disease Risk For Offspring, Claire Elaine Schulkey

Arts & Sciences Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Increasing maternal age is widely acknowledged to lead to greater likelihood of pregnancy complications and congenital abnormalities, but the basis of this effect has not been well studied. Often dismissed as the product of oocyte ageing, the mechanistic basis of this maternal age effect is likely more complex.

Congenital heart disease is a classic complex disease with multiple genetic and environmental modifiers, including maternal age. Maternal ageing is a known risk-factor in humans, and has been shown to exist in an Nkx2-5 haploinsufficient mouse model for the disease. This mouse model's maternal age risk is dependent upon strain background ...


Evolution Of Ecological Dominance Of Yeast Species In High-Sugar Environments, Kathryn Marie Williams Dec 2014

Evolution Of Ecological Dominance Of Yeast Species In High-Sugar Environments, Kathryn Marie Williams

Arts & Sciences Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Two challenging goals of evolutionary biology are to understand how evolutionary innovations evolve and how they contribute to the success of lineages. Evolutionary innovations may arise following whole genome duplication (WGD) events and they are suspected to contribute to the success of lineages by creating ecological opportunity. However, direct evidence for duplicated genes involved in evolutionary innovations remains rare, and the relationship between evolutionary innovations and the success of lineages may be very complex. In this study, I explore the relationship of evolutionary innovation, WGD, and the ecological dominance of yeast species in high-sugar environments. In budding yeast, a major ...


The Influence Of Metacommunity Size On Species Diversity Across Spatial Scales, Lauren Woods Dec 2014

The Influence Of Metacommunity Size On Species Diversity Across Spatial Scales, Lauren Woods

Arts & Sciences Electronic Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation explores the influence of metacommunity size and landscape level processes, such as dispersal, on species diversity. A metacommunity is a group of local communities, or patches, connected by dispersal, and metacommunity size can be defined as the number of discrete local patches within a metacommunity. In chapter 1, I developed a framework to predict the effects of habitat destruction, or a reduction in metacommunity size, on the species richness of local patches of different sizes by integrating metacommunity theory with the equilibrium theory of island biogeography. The effect of metacommunity size on species richness in small and large ...


An Essential Role For Self-Pmhc Throughout The Life Of A Cd4 T Cell: Contributions In The Thymus And Periphery, Stephanie Rodriguez Dec 2014

An Essential Role For Self-Pmhc Throughout The Life Of A Cd4 T Cell: Contributions In The Thymus And Periphery, Stephanie Rodriguez

Arts & Sciences Electronic Theses and Dissertations

It is well established that self-peptide Major Histocompatibility Complexes (hereafter self-pMHC) are essential for the development of a broad repertoire of mature, self-tolerant CD4 and CD8 T cells. Despite clear knowledge that the pool of self-ligands is critical for positive and negative selection, the exact kinetics and dynamic nature of thymocyte interaction with self-pMHC class II (self-pMHCII) bearing antigen-presenting cells (APCs) during development is still largely a mystery. The enigmatic nature of selecting self-pMHC is not unique to the thymic environment; increasingly evident is the dependence of peripheral T cells on extra-thymic self-pMHC expression, specifically selecting self-pMHC, for their homeostatic ...


Characterizing The Fitness Landscapes Of Gut Symbionts In Defined Community And Diet Contexts, Meng Wu Dec 2014

Characterizing The Fitness Landscapes Of Gut Symbionts In Defined Community And Diet Contexts, Meng Wu

Arts & Sciences Electronic Theses and Dissertations

A species' niche is the description of all the environmental conditions required to permit a population of that species to persist, including the effects of the population on those conditions. This definition includes the species' resource requirements, as well as stress tolerances and interactions with other species acting as competitors, predators, parasites, and mutualists. The human gut microbiota serves as a microbial `metabolic organ' tasked in part with the biotransformation of many components of our diet. Relatively little is known about the factors that allow members of the human gut microbiota to persist in a habitat that experiences marked changes ...


Modulation Of Nmda Receptor Activity During Physiological And Pathophysiological Events, Christine Marie Emnett Dec 2014

Modulation Of Nmda Receptor Activity During Physiological And Pathophysiological Events, Christine Marie Emnett

Arts & Sciences Electronic Theses and Dissertations

N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) are ionotropic glutamate receptors that serve crucial signaling and neurotrophic functions throughout the central nervous system. Both hyperfunction and hypofunction of NMDARs are associated with neurological and neuropsychiatric conditions. Thus, both positive and negative pharmacological NMDAR modulators are of clinical interest as treatments. Understanding drug mechanisms could lead to more rational drug design. Memantine and ketamine are NMDAR open channel blockers that exhibit similar pharmacodynamics at NMDARs but have different clinical uses. Memantine improves cognitive decline during Alzheimer's disease. Ketamine is an anesthetic and analgesic with psychotomimetic effects, but it is also a rapid acting and ...