Bollettino della Comunità scientifica in Australasia

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Bollettino della Comunità scientifica in Australasia
Ambasciata d’Italia
CANBERRA
Bollettino della Comunità
Scientifica in Australasia
Agosto 2008
Anno VIII – Fascicolo II
Ufficio dell’Addetto Scientifico
PIAR (Publications for Italian and Australian Reseachers Inc)
Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia
Ambasciata d’Italia
Agosto 2008
CANBERRA
Bollettino della Comunità
Scientifica in Australasia
Agosto 2008
Sponsored by:
I
Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia
Ambasciata d’Italia
Agosto 2008
CANBERRA
Bollettino della Comunità
Scientifica in Australasia
Aprile 2008
Direttore responsabile:
ing. Nicola Sasanelli
Responsabile e coordinamento editoriale:
Antonietta Cooper
Comitato di Redazione:
dott. Chiara Bancone - Universita' di Genova, Italy
dott. Federico Bettini – Universita’ di Bologna, Italy
dott. Matteo Bonazzi - European Commission, Brussels, Belgium
dott. Bob Brockie - Victoria University, New Zealand
dott. Edoardo Calia – Istituto Superiore Mario Boella, Italy
dott. Elena Caovilla – Universita’ degli Studi dell’Insubria, Como, Italy
ing Ludovico Ciferri - Research Director, ISMB (Italy) - Deputy Director of the
"Mobile Consumer Lab @ IUJ” (Japan)
dott.ssa Ida Fellegara – University of Queensland, Australia
dott.ssa Anna Maria Fioretti – CNR IGG Padova
dott. Guido Governatori – University of Queensland, Australia
dott.ssa Lynne Hunter – Delegation of the European Commission
to Australia and New Zealand
dott.ssa Marilena Salvo - Australian National University, Australia
dott.ssa Alessandra Warren – University of Sydney, Australia
Traduzioni a cura di: dott.ssa Paola Lucidi
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Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia
Ambasciata d’Italia
Agosto 2008
CANBERRA
Ambasciata d’Italia in Canberra
Ufficio dell’Addetto Scientifico
Comitato di Redazione
12 Grey Street
DEAKIN ACT 2600
Tel. (+61) (2) 6273 3333
Fax (+61) (2) 6273 2406
http://www.scientificambitalia.org.au/
[email protected]:[email protected]
ISSN 1446 - 9588
This project is proudly supported by the International Science Linkages programme estabilished
under the Australian Government’s innovation statement Backing Australia’s Ability
Il Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia si basa sul libero apporto dei ricercatori. Per
tale motivo gli autori se ne assumono interamente la responsabilità.
The Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia is based on the free contribution of
researchers. For this reason, the authors take on full responsibilities.
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Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia
Ambasciata d’Italia
Agosto 2008
CANBERRA
Sommario
EVENTI Promossi dall’Ufficio Scientifico dell’Ambasciata d’Italia a Canberra
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Conferenza Italo-Australiana NanoE3: Nanotecnologia applicata all’Elettronica, optoElettronica e ai sistemi Elettromeccanici
Italian-Australian NanoE3 Conference: Nanotechnology for Electronics, opto-Electronics
and Electro-mechanical systems
Lorry Faraone
Seminario bilaterale italo-australiano sui sistemi autonomi
Italo-Australian Bilateral Workshop on Autonomous Systems
Prof. Maurice Pagnucco UNSW
LE RISORSE GENETICO ANIMALI NELLA PROVINCIA DELL’OGLIASTRA
L’allevamento caprino in ambiente agro-pastorale e la gestione del territorio in “Unità
Caprina Equivalente”
FARM ANIMAL GENETIC RESOURCES IN THE OGLIASTRA PROVINCE
Goat farming in agropastoral areas and land management in “Goat Unit”
Francesco Congiu Giovanni Battista Congiu
“What if they never existed?”
Versione italiana
“What if they never existed?”
Alessandra Iero, English version
Carcinoma della mammella: aspetti chiave della ricerca e della pratica clinica in Italia e
Australia
Breast cancer research and clinical nodes in Italy and Australia
Daniele Generali, Alberto Bottini, Federica Signori, Stephen Fox and Derek Kennedy
Collaborazione Italo-Austaliana nella ricerca con la luce di sincrotrone
Italian and Australian collaboration in synchrotron light research
Kevin Prince
Immigrati cinesi e italiani nello stato del Victoria: uno studio comparativo sull’uso delle
tecnologie dell’informazione e delle comunicazioni (TIC)
Chinese and Italian migrants in Victoria: a comparative study in the use of information and
communications technologies (ICTs)
Livia Iacovino, Tom Denison, Graeme Johanson
Roadrunner abbatte la barriera del petaflop
THINK petaflop
IBM first to achieve coveted supercomputing milestone
Sam Palmisano
Al di la` della pelle, delle superfici e delle ombre: arte e scienza
Beyond Skin, Surfaces and Shadows: Art and Science
Nicola Sasanelli
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LINGUA pag
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Music in the treatment of pain. Society, medicine and neurosciences.
Alessandro Bertirotti and Stefano Cobianchi
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La finanziaria Australiana 2008-2009 e la spesa per la ricerca pubblica
2008/2009 Australian budget and expenditure on public research
Nicola sasanelli
Influenze socio-culturali degli immigrati italiani sull'architettura domestica del Queensland
Italian migrants' socio-cultural influences on the domestic architecture in Queensland.
Rafaello Furlan
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E-LEARNING E APPRENDIMENTO DELL’ITALIANO COME
STRANIERA
E- LEARNING AND ITALIAN L2 ACQUISITION
Grazia Micciche
Aspetti meccanici dei fenomeni deformativi
Mechanical problems connected to the deformation
Davide Bigoni
La musica nel trattamento del dolore. Società, medicina e neuroscienze
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Agosto 2008
CANBERRA
Una finestra sulla Commissione Europea
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Journey in the Academic and Research world of Italy
Politecnico di Milano
Knowledge and Experience for Innovation
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ARIA
Associations for Research between Italy and Australasia
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RICERCA, SVILUPPO, INNOVAZIONE
rapporto elaborato dall’Ufficio
• Nuovo
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NUOVE TECNOLOGIE - NUOVI MATERIALI
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RICERCA: collaborazione UE-Australia
A window on the European Commission
RESEARCH: EU-Australia collaboration
Lynne Hunter, Mark Matthews, Jean-Francois Desvignes-Hicks
Una finestra sull’economia
Spunti sulla globalizzazione economica
A window on Economics
About globalisation
Federico Alberto Bettini
Una finestra sul Pacifico
Le barriere tecnologiche, un’arma a doppio taglio nell’epoca della globalizzazione
A window on Pacific
Technological barriers, a double-edged sword in the age of globalization
Ludovico Ciferri
Viaggio nel mondo accademico e della ricerca del territorio dell’Australasia
A cura di Antonietta Cooper
Il Progetto “Città Universitaria”
Un’iniziativa strategica del governo del South Australia
Journey in the Academic and Research world of Australasia
University City Project
A Strategic South Australian Government initiative
Viaggio nel mondo accademico e della ricerca del territorio italiano
A cura di Anna Maria Fioretti
Politecnico di Milano
Cultura tecnologica, qualità e innovazione
Notizie flash dal mondo delle riviste tecnico-scientifiche
Australiane
ATTUALITA’
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Dai Tessuti della Tigre della Tasmania Tilacino (estinta 70 anni orsono) e’ stato
estratto il Dna e poi trasferito in un embrione di un roditore
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Progetto inter-universitario della Ford Motor Company per l’autovettura del
futuro
dell’Addetto Scientifico
dell’Ambasciata sullo stato dell’innovazione tecnologica in Australia
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Tessuti interattivi per il settore sportivo e riabilitativo
Nuova tecnologia per l’identificazione di armamenti nei porti ed negli
aereporti
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Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia
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CANBERRA
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Tecnologia microsismica utilizzata per
l’efficienza dell’esplorazione mineraria
diminuire il costo e migliorare
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
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• Reti di sensori per il monitoraggio della Grande Barriera Corraliana (Reef
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Skin)
SANITA’
• Gli estrogeni come possibile trattamento per la schizofrenia
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AMBIENTE
• Il futuro dell’energia verde attraverso le nanotechnologie
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SPAZIO
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CURRENT AFFAIRS
• A new “home” for Archimedes
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RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT, INNOVATION
• Capuchin monkeys are ready for business.
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NEW TECHNOLOGIES – NEW MATERIALS
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SPACE
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• The GLAST satellite is in orbit. The NASA mission for gamma astronomy
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Cooperazione CSIRO – NASA sull’esplorazione dei suoli lunare e del
pianeta Marte
News from the Italian technical-scientific journal
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Using intermetallic materials for an eco-compatible energy
Cutting-edge technologies for better food
INFN researcher invents a new technique for particle accelerators
Italy leads the way forward in computer architecture
MEDICINE
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Inferring native language from early bio-electrical activity
Phosphodiesterase 8B gene variants are associated with serum TSH levels
and thyroid function.
The whole genome of acinetobacter baumannii has been sequenced.
Smoking out the mediators of airway damage caused by pollutants
Bosentan reduces decline of patients with early stage pulmonary arterial
hypertension (early study)
Cholera study provides exciting new way of looking at infectious disease
ENVIRONMENT AND EARTH SCIENCES
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From the sea a new resource for the farm
65-million-year-old asteroid impact triggered a global hail of carbon beads
sets off, with fundamental Italian contribution
PROGRAMMA DELLE CONFERENZE IN AUSTRALASIA NEL 2008
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PRINCIPALI SITI WEB
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Bollettino della Comunità Scientifica in Australasia
Ambasciata d’Italia
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Agosto 2008
MEDICINE
Inferring native language from early bio-electrical activity
The finding of a recent study published in Biological Psychology, by Alice Mado Proverbio, at the head of
“Cognitive Electrophysiology lab” at the Dept. of Psychology of University of Milano-Bicocca, in
cooperation with Roberta Adorni, and Alberto Zani, researcher at the Institute of Bio-imaging and Molecular
Physiology (IBFM-CNR) of CNR at Milano-Segrate (Italy), demonstrated that the visual word form area
(located in the left fusiform gyrus of the occipito/temporal cortex), and devoted to the processing of letters
and words, is actually very sensitive to age of language acquisition.
The study was carried out in 15 high-level simultaneous interpreters working for the European Community
Parliament, whose English proficiency was indistinguishable (at professional level) from that of the native
language (Italian). Event-related brain potentials of the brain (ERPs) were recorded in these professionals
while they read hundreds of Italian, English and German words. The data showed that the first brain
response reflecting perceptual (orthographic) analysis and recorded over the left visual brain area, at about
170 ms after stimulus onset, exhibited a much greater amplitude in response to words belonging to the native
vs. foreign languages, proficiency being equal. This phenomenon is probably due to the fact, that, in
monolingual or late bilingual individuals, language acquisition occurs together with the acquisition of the so
called “world knowledge”, including conceptual and normative knowledge, somatosensory, motoric and
perceptual information. For instance, during early infancy a child gets to learn that a /kol't :llo/, whose
auditory form is processed in the temporo/parietal cortex, is quite a sharp object, edgy, cold, pointy, oblong
(information stored in the somatosensory and visual cortex, and learned by looking and touching), that only
adults are allowed to handle it, (normative value, with a link to pre-frontal cortex), that is potentially
dangerous and can lead to injures (affective valence, development of somatic markers stored in the orbitofrontal cortex and in the amygdala) and that can make portions of food smaller (usefulness, pragmatic
knowledge). In this way, linguistic, conceptual and pragmatic object properties are contextually acquired by
infants during early brain development which correspond to the creation of new synaptic connections
(neural pruning). Learning the English translation of a lemma (coltello = knife) later in life (after the age of 5
ys.) will instead correspond to the acquirement of a purely phonetic and orthographic information, with
indirect links to the others memory engrams and similar to a sort or parasitic ancillary information.
Further information: [email protected]
Phosphodiesterase 8B gene variants are associated with serum TSH levels and
thyroid function.
The hormone that stimulates the thyroid - Thyroid stimulating hormone or TSH- is produced by the
pituitary gland and controls thyroid growth and thyroid hormone secretion through binding to its receptor
(TSHR) and production of the second messanger cAMP. Serum TSH is a sensitive indicator of the correct
functioning of the thyroid, a gland that controls the body metabolism and whose overt abnormalities lead to
common endocrine disorders affecting ~ 10% of individuals over a life span. To identify the genetic factors
involved in the regulation of the levels of circulating TSH, which are estimated around 40% and are to date
largely unknown, an international group of scientists coordinated by Silvia Naitza at the INN-CNR, have
characterized 362,129 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) on the whole genome in 4300 Sardinians of
the Ogliastra Valley enrolled in the SardiNIA study. Statistical analysis of the results has led to the
identification of a strong association between a specific DNA variant (SNP) and circulating TSH levels,
which is responsible for an increase of 0.13 IU/ml in TSH. The SNP is located in the PDE8B gene,
encoding a high affinity cAMP-specific phosphodiesterase involved in the degradation of cAMP and
expressed at high levels in the thyroid. These results have been confirmed in 4,158 individuals, including
additional Sardinians and two genetically distant cohorts from the InCHIANTI study (Tuscany) and the Old
Order Amish (Pennsylvania). In addition to association of TSH levels with SNPs in PDE8B, the genome
scan provided evidence for several biologically interesting candidates, although these results will have to be
confirmed by further analysis in a larger number of individuals. The current hypothesis to explain the role of
PDE8B in the regulation of TSH levels is that PDE8B variants may have a primary effect of on cAMP levels
in the thyroid, which would affect production of the thyroid hormones to alter TSH release by the pituitary.
As PDE8B appears as the key factor in controlling TSH and the physiology of the thyroid, this gene may
provide in the future a candidate target for the treatment of some thyroid dysfunction.
Further information: Silvia Naitza [email protected]
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