Counterfeit medicines are a fundamental security problem. Counterfeiting medication poses a tremendous threat to patient safety, public health, and the economy in developed and less developed countries. Current solutions are often vulnerable due to the limited security levels. We propose that the highest protection against counterfeit medicines would be a combination of a physically unclonable function (PUF) with on-dose authentication. A PUF can provide a digital fingerprint with multiple pairs of input challenges and output responses. On-dose authentication can verify every individual pill without removing the identification tag. Here, we report on-dose PUFs that can be directly attached onto the surface of medicines, be swallowed, and digested. Fluorescent proteins and silk proteins serve as edible photonic biomaterials and the photoluminescent properties provide parametric support of challenge-response pairs. Such edible cryptographic primitives can play an important role in pharmaceutical anti-counterfeiting and other security applications requiring immediate destruction or vanishing features.
Background Antheraea yamamai, also known as the Japanese oak silk moth, is a wild species of silk moth. Silk produced by A. yamamai, referred to as tensan silk, shows different characteristics such as thickness, compressive elasticity, and chemical resistance compared with common silk produced from the domesticated silkworm, Bombyx mori. Its unique characteristics have led to its use in many research fields including biotechnology and medical science, and the scientific as well as economic importance of the wild silk moth continues to gradually increase. However, no genomic information for the wild silk moth, including A. yamamai, is currently available.FindingsIn order to construct the A. yamamai genome, a total of 147G base pairs using Illumina and Pacbio sequencing platforms were generated, providing 210-fold coverage based on the 700-Mb estimated genome size of A. yamamai. The assembled genome of A. yamamai was 656 Mb (>2 kb) with 3675 scaffolds, and the N50 length of assembly was 739 Kb with a 34.07% GC ratio. Identified repeat elements covered 37.33% of the total genome, and the completeness of the constructed genome assembly was estimated to be 96.7% by Benchmarking Universal Single-Copy Orthologs v2 analysis. A total of 15 481 genes were identified using Evidence Modeler based on the gene prediction results obtained from 3 different methods (ab initio, RNA-seq-based, known-gene-based) and manual curation.ConclusionsHere we present the genome sequence of A. yamamai, the first genome sequence of the wild silk moth. These results provide valuable genomic information, which will help enrich our understanding of the molecular mechanisms relating to not only specific phenotypes such as wild silk itself but also the genomic evolution of Saturniidae.
This paper explores the optimization of parallel multipliers for Quantum-Dot Cellular Automata. To reduce the complexity, multipliers are designed with quasi-modularity to accommodate large word sizes. The regular quasi-modular product method is used to make n × n multipliers using 4 (n/2 × n/2) modules. This may be continued with further decomposition to 16 (n/4×n/4) modules, etc. The last two rows in Wallace or Dadda reduction trees are summed by an adder that is 3n/2 − 1 bits long to produce the final product. This design is constructed using coplanar layouts and compared with other QCA multipliers (bit-serial and array multipliers). The delay, area and complexity are compared for several different operand sizes using the QCADesigner simulator.
Fluorescent proteins often result in phototoxicity and cytotoxicity, in particular because some red fluorescent proteins produce and release reactive oxygen species (ROS). The photogeneration of ROS is considered as a detrimental side effect in cellular imaging or is proactively utilized for ablating cancerous tissue. As ancient textiles or biomaterials, silk produced by silkworms can directly be used as fabrics or be processed into materials and structures to host other functional nanomaterials. It is reported that transgenic fusion of far‐red fluorescent protein (mKate2) with silk provides a photosensitizer hybridization platform for photoinducible control of ROS. Taking advantage of green (visible) light activation, native and regenerated mKate2 silk can produce and release superoxide and singlet oxygen, in a comparable manner of visible light‐driven plasmonic photocatalysis. Thus, the genetic expression of mKate2 in silk offers immediately exploitable and scalable photocatalyst‐like biomaterials. It is further envisioned that mKate2 silk can potentially rule out hazardous concerns associated with foreign semiconductor photocatalytic nanomaterials.
The paper aims to investigate the holistic environmental benefits of using a battery system on a roll on/roll off (ro-ro) passenger ship which was originally fitted with a diesel engine engaged in Korean coastal service. The process of this research has multiple layers. First, the operating profiles of the case ship were collected, such as speed, output, operation time and the configuration of the diesel propulsion system. Second, the full battery propulsion system, in place of the diesel system, was modelled and simulated on a power simulation software (PSIM) platform to verify the adequacy of the proposed battery propulsion system. Then, the life cycle assessment method was applied to comprehensively compare the environmental footprint of the diesel-mechanical and fully battery-powered vessels. A focus was placed on the life cycle of the energy sources consumed by the case ship in consideration of the South Korea’s current energy importation and production status. Three life cycle stages were considered in the analysis: ‘production’, ‘transport’ and ‘use’. With the aid of Sphera GaBi Software Version 2019 and its extensive data library, the environmental impacts at the energy production and transport stages were evaluated, while the same impacts at the use stage were determined based on actual laboratory measurements. The environmental performance of the two scenarios in four impact categories was discussed: global warming potential (GWP), acidification potential (AP), eutrophication potential (EP) and photochemical ozone creation potential (POCP). Results of the comparative analysis are presented based on estimates of the overall reduction in the environmental impact potential, thereby demonstrating the overall benefits of using a battery driven propulsion, with a decrease of the GWP by 35.7%, the AP by 77.6%, the EP by 87.8% and the POCP by 77.2%. A series of sensitivity analyses, however, has delivered the important message that the integration of batteries with marine transportation means may not always be the best solution. The types of energy sources used for electricity generation will be a key factor in determining whether the battery technology can ultimately contribute to cleaner shipping or not. By casting doubts on the benefits of battery propulsion, this paper is believed to offer a meaningful insight into developing a proper road map for electrifying ship propulsion toward zero emission of shipping.
Counterfeit medicines are a healthcare security problem, posing not only a direct threat to patient safety and public health but also causing heavy economic losses. Current anticounterfeiting methods are limited due to the toxicity of the constituent materials and the focus of secondary packaging level protections. We introduce an edible, imperceptible, and scalable matrix code of information representation and data storage for pharmaceutical products. This matrix code is digestible as it is composed of silk fibroin genetically encoded with fluorescent proteins produced by ecofriendly, sustainable silkworm farming. Three distinct fluorescence emission colors are incorporated into a multidimensional parameter space with a variable encoding capacity in a format of matrix arrays. This code is smartphone-readable to extract a digitized security key augmented by a deep neural network for overcoming fabrication imperfections and a cryptographic hash function for enhanced security. The biocompatibility, photostability, thermal stability, long-term reliability, and low bit error ratio of the code support the immediate feasibility for dosage-level anticounterfeit measures and authentication features. The edible code affixed to each medicine can serve as serialization, track and trace, and authentication at the dosage level, empowering every patient to play a role in combating illicit pharmaceuticals.
Plasmon-enhanced photoluminescence of fluorescent (mKate2) silk embedded with silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) as multifunctional photonic nanomaterials with flexibility and scalability.
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