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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Status
  • Public
Date Range
2012 2019


Olfaction is an important sensory modality for behavior since odors inform animals of the presence of food, potential mates, and predators. The fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, is a favorable model organism for the investigation of the biophysical mechanisms that contribute to olfaction because its olfactory system is anatomically similar to but simpler than that of vertebrates. In the Drosophila olfactory system, sensory transduction takes place in olfactory receptor neurons housed in the antennae and maxillary palps on the front of the head. The first stage of olfactory processing resides in the antennal lobe, where the structural unit is the glomerulus. …

Contributors
Luli, Dori, Crook, Sharon, Baer, Steven, et al.
Created Date
2013

Dendrites are the structures of a neuron specialized to receive input signals and to provide the substrate for the formation of synaptic contacts with other cells. The goal of this work is to study the activity-dependent mechanisms underlying dendritic growth in a single-cell model. For this, the individually identifiable adult motoneuron, MN5, in Drosophila melanogaster was used. This dissertation presents the following results. First, the natural variability of morphological parameters of the MN5 dendritic tree in control flies is not larger than 15%, making MN5 a suitable model for quantitative morphological analysis. Second, three-dimensional topological analyses reveals that different parts …

Contributors
Vonhoff, Fernando Jaime, Duch, Carsten J, Smith, Brian H, et al.
Created Date
2012

In the last 15 years, there has been a significant increase in the number of motor neural prostheses used for restoring limb function lost due to neurological disorders or accidents. The aim of this technology is to enable patients to control a motor prosthesis using their residual neural pathways (central or peripheral). Recent studies in non-human primates and humans have shown the possibility of controlling a prosthesis for accomplishing varied tasks such as self-feeding, typing, reaching, grasping, and performing fine dexterous movements. A neural decoding system comprises mainly of three components: (i) sensors to record neural signals, (ii) an algorithm …

Contributors
Padmanaban, Subash, Greger, Bradley, Santello, Marco, et al.
Created Date
2017

Cell morphology and the distribution of voltage gated ion channels play a major role in determining a neuron's firing behavior, resulting in the specific processing of spatiotemporal synaptic input patterns. Although many studies have provided insight into the computational properties arising from neuronal structure as well as from channel kinetics, no comprehensive theory exists which explains how the interaction of these features shapes neuronal excitability. In this study computational models based on the identified Drosophila motoneuron (MN) 5 are developed to investigate the role of voltage gated ion channels, the impact of their densities and the effects of structural features. …

Contributors
Berger, Sandra Daniela, Crook, Sharon, Baer, Steven, et al.
Created Date
2014

Advances in experimental techniques have allowed for investigation of molecular dynamics at ever smaller temporal and spatial scales. There is currently a varied and growing body of literature which demonstrates the phenomenon of \emph{anomalous diffusion} in physics, engineering, and biology. In particular many diffusive type processes in the cell have been observed to follow a power law $\left<x^2\right> \propto t^\alpha$ scaling of the mean square displacement of a particle. This contrasts with the expected linear behavior of particles undergoing normal diffusion. \emph{Anomalous sub-diffusion} ($\alpha<1$) has been attributed to factors such as cytoplasmic crowding of macromolecules, and trap-like structures in the …

Contributors
Holeva, Thomas Matthew, Ringhofer, Christian, Baer, Steve, et al.
Created Date
2014

The phycologist, M. R. Droop, studied vitamin B12 limitation in the flagellate Monochrysis lutheri and concluded that its specific growth rate depended on the concentration of the vitamin within the cell; i.e. the cell quota of the vitamin B12. The Droop model provides a mathematical expression to link growth rate to the intracellular concentration of a limiting nutrient. Although the Droop model has been an important modeling tool in ecology, it has only recently been applied to study cancer biology. Cancer cells live in an ecological setting, interacting and competing with normal and other cancerous cells for nutrients and space, …

Contributors
Everett, Rebecca Anne, Kuang, Yang, Nagy, John, et al.
Created Date
2015

Recent new experiments showed that wide-field imaging at millimeter scale is capable of recording hundreds of neurons in behaving mice brain. Monitoring hundreds of individual neurons at a high frame rate provides a promising tool for discovering spatiotemporal features of large neural networks. However, processing the massive data sets is impossible without automated procedures. Thus, this thesis aims at developing a new tool to automatically segment and track individual neuron cells. The new method used in this study employs two major ideas including feature extraction based on power spectral density of single neuron temporal activity and clustering tree to separate …

Contributors
Wu, Ruofan, Si, Jennie, Sadleir, Rosalind, et al.
Created Date
2016

Mathematical models are important tools for addressing problems that exceed experimental capabilities. In this work, I present ordinary and partial differential equation (ODE, PDE) models for two problems: Vicodin abuse and impact cratering. The prescription opioid Vicodin is the nation's most widely prescribed pain reliever. The majority of Vicodin abusers are first introduced via prescription, distinguishing it from other drugs in which the most common path to abuse begins with experimentation. I develop and analyze two mathematical models of Vicodin use and abuse, considering only those patients with an initial Vicodin prescription. Through adjoint sensitivity analysis, I show that focusing …

Contributors
Caldwell, Wendy K, Wirkus, Stephen, Asphaug, Erik, et al.
Created Date
2019

A general continuum model for simulating the flow of ions in the salt baths that surround and fill excitable neurons is developed and presented. The ion densities and electric potential are computed using the drift-diffusion equations. In addition, a detailed model is given for handling the electrical dynamics on interior membrane boundaries, including a model for ion channels in the membranes that facilitate the transfer of ions in and out of cells. The model is applied to the triad synapse found in the outer plexiform layer of the retina in most species. Experimental evidence suggests the existence of a negative …

Contributors
Jones, Jeremiah, Gardner, Carl, Gardner, Carl, et al.
Created Date
2013

Predicting resistant prostate cancer is critical for lowering medical costs and improving the quality of life of advanced prostate cancer patients. I formulate, compare, and analyze two mathematical models that aim to forecast future levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). I accomplish these tasks by employing clinical data of locally advanced prostate cancer patients undergoing androgen deprivation therapy (ADT). I demonstrate that the inverse problem of parameter estimation might be too complicated and simply relying on data fitting can give incorrect conclusions, since there is a large error in parameter values estimated and parameters might be unidentifiable. I provide confidence intervals …

Contributors
Baez, Javier, Kuang, Yang, Kostelich, Eric, et al.
Created Date
2017