• Attitudes, Knowledge, and Beliefs on Cancer and its Prevention in Northwestern Rural Alaska

      Schmidt, Jenna (2012)
      Rural Alaskans face unique challenges in accessibility. Most villages and cities are not connected to road systems, limiting travel between rural and urban areas. This also limits connectivity between small communities. Residents rely heavily on air travel. The accessibility of health care and education is limited due to geographical isolation of communities (State of Alaska, 2006). The State of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services (2009) cites cancer as the leading cause of death in Alaska since 1993. Early detection and treatment is key as it reduces the risk of mortality due to different forms of cancer. Accessibility of cancer education, screening, treatment, and other needs are restricted by cost and the availability of transportation (State of Alaska, 2006). This study aims to provide regionally relevant information focusing on current Northwestern rural Alaskan knowledge, beliefs, and perspectives on cancer and its prevention. Assessment of these topics will provide useful information to rural Alaskan health care providers. The information can be used by these providers to focus their resources toward needed areas. This can help in the provision of a tailored health education approach, which may increase effectiveness of educational communication to each distinct community.
    • Body Image and Disordered Eating Among UAF Female Athletes and Non-Athletes

      Montgomery, Jordyn (2012)
      •Disordered eating and poor body image is a problem in our society for many women •Most eating disorder patients are young females, and female athletes may be particularly at risk •Disordered eating is often associated with perfectionism, poor mental health, and other health-risk behaviors •This research explored associations between eating behavior, body image, perfectionism, depression, binge drinking, and alcohol consequences in a sample of female athletes and non-athletes •Analyses were conducted to determine differences in these variables between athletes and non-athletes, and between sports in the subsample of athletes
    • Central CO2/pH Chemosensitivity Influence on Respiration in both Early and Late Staged Tadpoles

      Tackett, Alex (2012)
      We test the hypothesis that central respiratory CO2/pH chemosensitivity, recorded from isolated brainstems, remains consistent throughout tadpole development. Results indicate that tadpoles at all developmental stages respond to CO2/pH, and that the sensitivity of these responses does not change with development.
    • Changes in Respiratory CO2 Chemosensitivity Using Early- and Late-Stage Tadpoles

      Nesteby, Andrea K. (2012)
      Isolated tadpole brainstems provide a robust model for quantifying central respiratory CO2 chemosensitivity. Whole-nerve recordings were used to identify respiratory responses of early and late-stage tadpoles to different CO2 levels in order to characterize the sensitivity of different developmental stages to respiratory stimuli. Some significance has been determined when comparing baseline and individual treatment values; however, further research needs to be done in order to fully characterize the CO2 influence on respiration.
    • Characterization of ibogaine analogs on the hα3β4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

      Ross, Jordan (2012)
      Nicotine addiction is a global health problem that affects nearly one-third of the population. Animal models have shown that the beta-4 subunit of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) expressed in the habenulointerpeduncular pathway plays a particularly important role in modulating many of the symptoms of nicotine withdrawal in mice. Ibogaine, a naturally occurring compound extracted from the root bark of a West African shrub, has been shown to reduce drug self administration in animal models of addiction. Ibogaine is considered to be a dirty drug due to its nonspecific interaction at a variety of receptor subtypes. This “nonspecificity” contributes to its hallucinogenic, tremorigenic, and cardiovascular compromising properties. It is thought that the anti-addictive effects of ibogaine are due to its antagonism of the α3β4 nAChR. In this study we explore the interaction of ibogaine on the α3β4 nAChR with the hope of developing more selective, more effective therapeutics in the treatment of addiction.
    • Characterizing Transitioning in Chaotic Models

      Winkelman, A (2012)
      In order to understand how complicated physical systems behave, we study idealized systems instead and interpret the qualitative behavior. In order to understand how non-linear, chaotic systems transition into new parameter sets, we characterize the distribution of dynamical points over the manifold of trajectories (also known as the “strange attractor”) for the Lorenz model under two regimes. We consider the effects of variation of just one of the three parameters of the Lorenz model. First, we establish measures of shape of the distribution over the manifold for a range of static values of that parameter. Then, the same measures of shape are calculated for the trajectory that results when a parameter is ramped linearly in time. Statistical comparison of these distributions will be used to describe the evolution of the attractor. This simple model can illustrate how such non-linear, chaotic systems behave when the parameters of the system vary.
    • Chukchi Edges Project - Geophysical constraints on the history of the Amerasia Basin

      Ilhan, Ibrahim (2012)
      The geological history of the Amerasia Basin is poorly understood, in part due to the lack of identified plate boundaries within it. These boundaries must exist to explain the basin history. Identification of these structures will make it possible to reconstruct the development of the basin, which will substantially improve our understanding of the surrounding continents. The Chukchi Borderland, a block of extended continental crust embedded in the Canada Basin, figures prominently in all tectonic models proposed for the opening of the Amerasia Basin. The Chukchi cannot be simply reconstructed back to any of the nearby continental shelves. It complicates any model for the Mesozoic opening of the Amerasia Basin. According to the commonly accepted model, the Canada Basin opened like a pair of scissors. This was accomplished by a counter-clockwise rotation of the North Alaskan-Chukchi micro-plate (Arctic Alaska Plate) by 66 degrees. The micro-plate collided with the Siberian margin. Most of the existing models for the development of the Amerasia Basin accept the basic pattern of scissors-like or, classically, the “windshield wiper” opening for the basin. This theory finds some support in the identification of a possible relict mid-ocean ridge axis in the central Canada Basin. Since the continental Chukchi Borderland creates a space problem for any simple opening model, the greatest differences between models revolve around how to accommodate that block. Fundamental differences among the proposed models include the paleo-location of the Chukchi Borderland as well as whether the Borderland is a single entity or is instead comprised of small terranes which behaved as independent microplates. A consequence of these models is the prediction that the Chukchi Borderland is distinct from the Chukchi Shelf. During the Chukchi Edges cruise on board the RV Marcus G. Langseth, we collected multi-channel seismic reflection, swath bathymetry, gravity, magnetics and sonobuoy refraction data across the transition from the Chukchi Shelf to the Borderland. These data will establish new constraints on the timing and distribution of deformation in the development of the Amerasia Basin and provide a test of the windshield wiper model of basin opening.
    • Cobalt Signatures of Gold-Bearing Pyrite Kensington Gold Mine, SE Alaska

      Heinchon, Sarah (2012)
      The Kensington mine is located about 45 miles northwest of Juneau and is expected to produce 125,000 ounces of gold annually. The Kensington ore body is an early Tertiary vein system hosted in a weakly metamorphosed mid-Cretaceous pluton. The traditionally known veins (quartz-Au veins) are structurally controlled by prominent shear zones in the Jualin Pluton and are primarily quartz >> calcite, with 10-20% pyrite. The pyrite contains metallic gold, chalcopyrite, and telluride minerals, either as inclusions, along grain boundaries, or fracture fill (fig. 3a – 3c). The quartz-Au veins have varying concentrations of chalcopyrite.
    • Developing Entanglement Verification for Large Bipartite Systems

      Edwards, Thomas (2012)
      It is a major problem within the field of Quantum Information whether the state of a system is entangled or separable. Exact methods have been developed for two qubit systems, but for larger systems determining the boundary between separable and entangled states has been shown to be NP-hard. An iterative method has been proposed that creates progressively tighter bounds from each direction, but this method is resource limited, and determining the boundary precisely requires an infinite number of iterations. Further, it is also believed that successive iterations scale badly. Instead, a weighted measure is developed over the delineated subspaces, producing a likelihood function by convex optimization. This presentation describes progress towards understanding and deploying this method in support of experimental work involving entangled states.
    • The effect of nutritional stress and life history on the rate of telomere loss in black-legged kittiwake and red-legged kittiwake chicks

      Johnson, Lara (2012)
      Slow-track species such as the red-legged kittiwake (Rissa brevirostris) and fast-track species such as the black-legged kittiwake (R. tridactyla) respond differently to environmental pressures. We examined how nutritional stress may affect the rate of telomere loss, a proxy for life expectancy, in these two seabirds. We did not find a significant effect of nutrition on telomere dynamics. However, there was a difference in species effect, with black-legged kittiwakes having an increase and red-legged kittiwakes a decrease in telomere length. This result may reflect differences in life history.
    • Effects of Ichythyophonus on Chinook Salmon Reproductive Success in the Yukon River Draining

      Floyd, Theresa (2012)
      Ichthyophonus hoferi is a parasitic protozoan affecting marine and anadromous fishes, including salmonids (Kocan et al. 2004). Gross clinical signs associated with Ichthyophonus infection are multifocal white lesions on the heart, liver, spleen, and muscle tissue (Fig. 2 A, B). Ichthyophonus is likely an orally transmitted parasite with the potential to be horizontally transferred (Kocan et al. 2010). In the mid 1980’s Ichthyophonus was identified in Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADFG) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, after fishermen noted an increase of white pustules on heart and muscle of harvested Chinook salmon. Fishermen also noted that the flesh did not dry properly and had an unpleasant fruity smell (Kocan et al. 2004). Large scale necrosis in tissues can lead to organ failure, decreased stamina, and pre-spawning mortality (Kocan et al. 2006). Ichthyophonus has caused major reoccurring epizootics and mass die-offs in Atlantic herring, (Clupea harengus), with peaks of disease prevalence in June and November (Kramer-Schadt et al. 2010). Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) infected with Ichthyophonus showed significant reduction in hematocrit pointing to reduced swimming performance (Rand and Cone 1990). In recent years, Chinook salmon stocks of Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim region (AYK) have had low abundance and salmon returns did not hold up to pre-season expectations based on escapement in the corresponding brood years (JTC 2011). In response, fisheries managers cancelled or restricted commercial, subsistence, and sport fishing since 2008. These actions harshly impacted U.S. subsistence fisheries along the Yukon River, but succeeded in the interim management escapement goals into Canada as part of the Pacific Salmon Treaty between the U.S. and Canada. Yukon River Chinook salmon are undergoing one of the longest salmon migrations in the world. They must acquire considerable energy reserves before river entry to energetically prepare for this effort. Rahimian (1998) noted an association of ichthyophoniasis with reduced fish body reserves and emaciation thus complicating successful completion of the spawning migration. Okamoto et al. (1987) showed a positive relationship between Ichthyophonus-related mortality and water temperature with 100% mortality occurring at 15°C to 20°C in rainbow trout. Similarly, Kocan et al. (2009) showed significantly reduced swimming performance in Ichthyophonus-infected rainbow trout at 15°C to 20°C. In-river conditions in the Yukon River have changed over the past 30 years, with June water temperatures having increased by approximately 2.5ºC (Horstmann-Dehn unpublished data).
    • Energy Saving Potential of Idle Pacman Supercomputing Nodes

      Lower, Brahm (2012)
      To determine the energy saving potential of suspending idle supercomputing nodes without sacrificing efficiency, my research involved the setup of a compute node power usage monitoring system. This system measures how much power each node draws at its diff erent levels of operation using an automated Expect script. The script automates tasks with interactive command line interfaces, to perform the power measurement readings. Steps required for the power usage monitoring system include remotely logging into the Pacman Penguin compute cluster power distribution units (PDUs), feeding commands to the PDUs, and storing the returned data. Using a Python script the data is then parsed into a more coherent format and written to a common file format for analysis. With this system, the Arctic Region Supercomputing Center (ARSC) will be able to determine how much energy is used during diff erent levels of load intensity on the Pacman supercomputer and how much energy can be saved by suspending unnecessary nodes during levels of reduced activity. Power utilization by supercomputers is of major interest to those who design and purchase them. Since 2008, the leading source of worldwide supercomputer speed rankings has also included power consumption and power efficiency values. Because digital computers utilize electricity to perform computation, larger computers tend to utilize more energy and produce more heat. Pacman, an acronym for Pacific Area Climate Monitoring and Analysis Network, is a high performance supercomputer designed for large compute and memory intensive jobs. Pacman is composed of the following general computational nodes: • 256 four-core compute nodes containing two dual core 2.6 GHz AMD Opteron processors each • 20 twelve-core compute nodes containing two six core 2.6 GHz AMD Opteron processors each • 88 sixteen-core compute nodes containing two eight core 2.3 GHz AMD Opteron processors each
    • First Order Estimation of Calving Losses from Gulf of Alaska Glaciers

      McNabb, Bob (2012)
      Despite its importance in projections of sea level rise, dynamic mass loss from tidewater glaciers remains poorly constrained and understood. Owing to this difficulty, very few long-term or estimates of dynamic losses exist, and regional estimates of dynamic loss are nonexistent. Many studies have highlighted the importance of Alaska glaciers to sea level rise (e.g., Berthier and others, 2010). In this study, we present a detailed record of length fluctuations of Gulf of Alaska (GOA) tidewater glaciers, and propose a method to estimate calving fluxes on a regional level.
    • The Flight of the Black Wolf Squadron

      Widman, Benjamin (2012)
      By 1920, Alaska became economically, politically, and socially stale. Aviation brought a need revitalization to the territory. The Black Wolf Squadron's flight from New York to Nome brought international attention and promised new industries and commercial opportunities. The flight of the Black Squadron would begin a new era for Alaska, the era of aviation.
    • Frequency-Based Monitoring of Small-Scale Explosive Volcanic Activity

      Worden, Anna K. (2012)
      Strombolian activity is one of the most common types of volcanic activity. When this activity occurs at remote volcanoes it often goes undetected and cannot be monitored easily or safely by direct methods. Satellite remote sensing can be useful in the routine monitoring of this activity. Numerous remote volcanoes in the North Paci c exhibit Strombolian activity, often as a precursor to more vigorous activity which can a ect communities and transportation. Factors a ecting the visibility the explosions include satellite and crater geometry, time of image capture, and most importantly, weather. These factors eliminate a signi cant number of satellite passes. The remaining passes are used to calculate the probability of a clear view at the volcano and the likelihood of detecting an explosion. All of these factors are used to detect changes in relative frequency of explosions.