WorldWideScience

Sample records for higher level artificial

  1. Higher-level Innovization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bandaru, Sunith; Tutum, Cem Celal; Deb, Kalyanmoy

    2011-01-01

    we introduce the higher-level innovization task through an application of a manufacturing process simulation for the Friction Stir Welding (FSW) process where commonalities among two different Pareto-optimal fronts are analyzed. Multiple design rules are simultaneously deciphered from each front...

  2. Teaching at higher levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998-11-01

    Undergraduate physics programmes for the 21st century were under discussion at a recent event held in Arlington, USA, open to two or three members of the physics faculties of universities from across the whole country. The conference was organized by the American Association of Physics Teachers with co-sponsorship from the American Institute of Physics, the American Physical Society and Project Kaleidoscope. Among the various aims were to learn about physics departments that have successfully revitalized their undergraduate physics programmes with innovative introductory physics courses and multi-track majors programmes. Engineers and life scientists were to be asked directly how physics programmes can better serve their students, and business leaders would be speaking on how physics departments can help to prepare their students for the diverse careers that they will eventually follow. It was planned to highlight ways that departments could fulfil their responsibilities towards trainee teachers, to identify the resources needed for revitalizing a department's programme, and to develop guidelines and recommendations for a funding programme to support collaborative efforts among physics departments for carrying out the enhancements required. More details about the conference can be found on the AAPT website (see http://www.aapt.org/programs/rupc.html). Meanwhile the UK's Higher Education Funding Council has proposed a two-pronged approach to the promotion of high quality teaching and learning, as well as widening participation in higher education from 1999-2000. A total of £60m should be available to support these initiatives by the year 2001-2002. As part of this scheme the Council will invite bids from institutions to support individual academics in enhancing learning and teaching, as well as in recognition of individual excellence. As with research grants, such awards would enable staff to pursue activities such as the development of teaching materials

  3. Human-Level Artificial Intelligence? Be Serious!

    OpenAIRE

    Nilsson, Nils J.

    2005-01-01

    I claim that achieving real human-level artificial intelligence would necessarily imply that most of the tasks that humans perform for pay could be automated. Rather than work toward this goal of automation by building special-purpose systems, I argue for the development of general-purpose, educable systems that can learn and be taught to perform any of the thousands of jobs that humans can perform. Joining others who have made similar proposals, I advocate beginning with a system that has mi...

  4. Forecasting Water Levels Using Artificial Neural Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shreenivas N. Londhe

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available For all Ocean related activities it is necessary to predict the actual water levels as accurate as possible. The present work aims at predicting the water levels with a lead time of few hours to a day using the technique of artificial neural networks. Instead of using the previous and current values of observed water level time series directly as input and output the water level anomaly (difference between the observed water level and harmonically predicted tidal level is calculated for each hour and the ANN model is developed using this time series. The network predicted anomaly is then added to harmonic tidal level to predict the water levels. The exercise is carried out at six locations, two in The Gulf of Mexico, two in The Gulf of Maine and two in The Gulf of Alaska along the USA coastline. The ANN models performed reasonably well for all forecasting intervals at all the locations. The ANN models were also run in real time mode for a period of eight months. Considering the hurricane season in Gulf of Mexico the models were also tested particularly during hurricanes.

  5. Artificial Heads for High-Level Impulse Sound Measurement

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Buck, K

    1999-01-01

    If the Insertion Loss (IL) of hearing protectors has to be determined with very high impulse or continuous noise levels, the acoustic insulation of the Artificial Test Fixture has to exceed at least the Insertion Loss (IL...

  6. Forecasting daily lake levels using artificial intelligence approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kisi, Ozgur; Shiri, Jalal; Nikoofar, Bagher

    2012-04-01

    Accurate prediction of lake-level variations is important for planning, design, construction, and operation of lakeshore structures and also in the management of freshwater lakes for water supply purposes. In the present paper, three artificial intelligence approaches, namely artificial neural networks (ANNs), adaptive-neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS), and gene expression programming (GEP), were applied to forecast daily lake-level variations up to 3-day ahead time intervals. The measurements at the Lake Iznik in Western Turkey, for the period of January 1961-December 1982, were used for training, testing, and validating the employed models. The results obtained by the GEP approach indicated that it performs better than ANFIS and ANNs in predicting lake-level variations. A comparison was also made between these artificial intelligence approaches and convenient autoregressive moving average (ARMA) models, which demonstrated the superiority of GEP, ANFIS, and ANN models over ARMA models.

  7. Protein levels and colony development of Africanized and European honey bees fed natural and artificial diets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morais, M M; Turcatto, A P; Pereira, R A; Francoy, T M; Guidugli-Lazzarini, K R; Gonçalves, L S; de Almeida, J M V; Ellis, J D; De Jong, D

    2013-12-19

    Pollen substitute diets are a valuable resource for maintaining strong and health honey bee colonies. Specific diets may be useful in one region or country and inadequate or economically unviable in others. We compared two artificial protein diets that had been formulated from locally-available ingredients in Brazil with bee bread and a non-protein sucrose diet. Groups of 100 newly-emerged, adult workers of Africanized honey bees in Brazil and European honey bees in the USA were confined in small cages and fed on one of four diets for seven days. The artificial diets included a high protein diet made of soy milk powder and albumin, and a lower protein level diet consisting of soy milk powder, brewer's yeast and rice bran. The initial protein levels in newly emerged bees were approximately 18-21 µg/µL hemolymph. After feeding on the diets for seven days, the protein levels in the hemolymph were similar among the protein diet groups (~37-49 µg/µL after seven days), although Africanized bees acquired higher protein levels, increasing 145 and 100% on diets D1 and D2, respectively, versus 83 and 60% in the European bees. All the protein diets resulted in significantly higher levels of protein than sucrose solution alone. In the field, the two pollen substitute diets were tested during periods of low pollen availability in the field in two regions of Brazil. Food consumption, population development, colony weight, and honey production were evaluated to determine the impact of the diets on colony strength parameters. The colonies fed artificial diets had a significant improvement in all parameters, while control colonies dwindled during the dearth period. We conclude that these two artificial protein diets have good potential as pollen substitutes during dearth periods and that Africanized bees more efficiently utilize artificial protein diets than do European honey bees.

  8. Gap Filling of Daily Sea Levels by Artificial Neural Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lyubka Pashova

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available In the recent years, intelligent methods as artificial neural networks are successfully applied for data analysis from different fields of the geosciences. One of the encountered practical problems is the availability of gaps in the time series that prevent their comprehensive usage for the scientific and practical purposes. The article briefly describes two types of the artificial neural network (ANN architectures - Feed-Forward Backpropagation (FFBP and recurrent Echo state network (ESN. In some cases, the ANN can be used as an alternative on the traditional methods, to fill in missing values in the time series. We have been conducted several experiments to fill the missing values of daily sea levels spanning a 5-years period using both ANN architectures. A multiple linear regression for the same purpose has been also applied. The sea level data are derived from the records of the tide gauge Burgas, which is located on the western Black Sea coast. The achieved results have shown that the performance of ANN models is better than that of the classical one and they are very promising for the real-time interpolation of missing data in the time series.

  9. Higher level WZW sectors from free fermions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boeckenhauer, J.

    1996-02-01

    We introduce a gauge group of internal symmetries of an ambient algebra as a new tool for investigating the superselection structure of WZW theories and the representation theory of the corresponding affine Lie algebras. The relevant ambient algebra arises from the description of these conformal field theories in terms of free fermions. As an illustration we analyze in detail the so(N) WZW theories at level two. In this case there is actually a homorphism from the representation ring of the gauge group to the WZW fusion ring, even though the level-two observable algebra is smaller than the gauge invariant subalgebra of the field algebra. (orig.)

  10. Defining Higher-Order Turbulent Moment Closures with an Artificial Neural Network and Random Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGibbon, J.; Bretherton, C. S.

    2017-12-01

    Unresolved turbulent advection and clouds must be parameterized in atmospheric models. Modern higher-order closure schemes depend on analytic moment closure assumptions that diagnose higher-order moments in terms of lower-order ones. These are then tested against Large-Eddy Simulation (LES) higher-order moment relations. However, these relations may not be neatly analytic in nature. Rather than rely on an analytic higher-order moment closure, can we use machine learning on LES data itself to define a higher-order moment closure?We assess the ability of a deep artificial neural network (NN) and random forest (RF) to perform this task using a set of observationally-based LES runs from the MAGIC field campaign. By training on a subset of 12 simulations and testing on remaining simulations, we avoid over-fitting the training data.Performance of the NN and RF will be assessed and compared to the Analytic Double Gaussian 1 (ADG1) closure assumed by Cloudy Layers Unified By Binormals (CLUBB), a higher-order turbulence closure currently used in the Community Atmosphere Model (CAM). We will show that the RF outperforms the NN and the ADG1 closure for the MAGIC cases within this diagnostic framework. Progress and challenges in using a diagnostic machine learning closure within a prognostic cloud and turbulence parameterization will also be discussed.

  11. Uptake of 2,4-D in higher plants from artificial rain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lokke, H.

    1984-01-01

    Sinapis alba L., Lapsana communis L., Achillea millefolium L., Brassica napus L., Lactuca sativa L., and Lycopersicum esculentum L. were exposed to 2,4-dichlorophenoxy [2- 14 C]acetic acid (2,4-D) at 10 micrograms liter-1 in artificial rain, pH 6.5 and 3.3. The 2,4-D was absorbed in all species tested. Concentrations of parent 2,4-D appeared at the highest level in Achillea (0.1 mg kg-1 dry wt), and at zero level in Lycopersicum. Twenty-one daily treatments at pH 6.5 for 30-min periods increased dry-matter concentrations in the leaves of Achillea and decreased those in Brassica. No change in dry-matter concentration was observed in the leaves of Brassica by seven daily treatments for 30-min periods at pH 3.3

  12. Sea-level rise and refuge habitats for tidal marsh species: can artificial islands save the California Ridgway's rail?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overton, Cory T.; Takekawa, John Y.; Casazza, Michael L.; Bui, Thuy-Vy D.; Holyoak, Marcel; Strong, Donald R.

    2014-01-01

    Terrestrial species living in intertidal habitats experience refuge limitation during periods of tidal inundation, which may be exacerbated by seasonal variation in vegetation structure, tidal cycles, and land-use change. Sea-level rise projections indicate the severity of refuge limitation may increase. Artificial habitats that provide escape cover during tidal inundation have been proposed as a temporary solution to alleviate these limitations. We tested for evidence of refuge habitat limitation in a population of endangered California Ridgway's rail (Rallus obsoletus obsoletus; hereafter California rail) through use of artificial floating island habitats provided during two winters. Previous studies demonstrated that California rail mortality was especially high during the winter and periods of increased tidal inundation, suggesting that tidal refuge habitat is critical to survival. In our study, California rail regularly used artificial islands during higher tides and daylight hours. When tide levels inundated the marsh plain, use of artificial islands was at least 300 times more frequent than would be expected if California rails used artificial habitats proportional to their availability (0.016%). Probability of use varied among islands, and low levels of use were observed at night. These patterns may result from anti-predator behaviors and heterogeneity in either rail density or availability of natural refuges. Endemic saltmarsh species are increasingly at risk from habitat change resulting from sea-level rise and development of adjacent uplands. Escape cover during tidal inundation may need to be supplemented if species are to survive. Artificial habitats may provide effective short-term mitigation for habitat change and sea-level rise in tidal marsh environments, particularly for conservation-reliant species such as California rails.

  13. Effects of Higher and Lower Level Writing-To-Learn Assignments on Higher and Lower Level Examination Questions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nevid, Jeffrey S.; Ambrose, Michael A.; Pyun, Yea Seul

    2017-01-01

    Our study examined whether brief writing-to-learn assignments linked to lower and higher levels in Bloom's taxonomy affected performance differentially on examination performance in assessing these skill levels. Using a quasi-random design, 91 undergraduate students in an introductory psychology class completed eight lower level and eight higher…

  14. Application of artificial neural network model for groundwater level forecasting in a river island with artificial influencing factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sanghoon; Yoon, Heesung; Park, Byeong-Hak; Lee, Kang-Kun

    2017-04-01

    Groundwater use has been increased for various purposes like agriculture, industry or drinking water in recent years, the issue related to sustainability on the groundwater use also has been raised. Accordingly, forecasting the groundwater level is of great importance for planning sustainable use of groundwater. In a small island surrounded by the Han River, South Korea, seasonal fluctuation of the groundwater level is characterized by multiple factors such as recharge/discharge event of the Paldang dam, Water Curtain Cultivation (WCC) during the winter season, operation of Groundwater Heat Pump System (GWHP). For a period when the dam operation is only occurred in the study area, a prediction of the groundwater level can be easily achieved by a simple cross-correlation model. However, for a period when the WCC and the GWHP systems are working together, the groundwater level prediction is challenging due to its unpredictable operation of the two systems. This study performed Artificial Neural Network (ANN) model to forecast the groundwater level in the river area reflecting the various predictable/unpredictable factors. For constructing the ANN models, two monitoring wells, YSN1 and YSO8, which are located near the injection and abstraction wells for the GWHP system were selected, respectively. By training with the groundwater level data measured in January 2015 to August 2015, response of groundwater level by each of the surface water level, the WCC and the GWHP system were evaluated. Consequentially, groundwater levels in December 2015 to March 2016 were predicted by ANN models, providing optimal fits in comparison to the observed water levels. This study suggests that the ANN model is a useful tool to forecast the groundwater level in terms of the management of groundwater. Acknowledgement : Financial support was provided by the "R&D Project on Environmental Management of Geologic CO2 Storage" from the KEITI (Project Number: 2014001810003) This research was

  15. Artificially Increased Yolk Hormone Levels and Neophobia in Domestic Chicks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aline Bertin

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available In birds there is compelling evidence that the development and expression of behavior is affected by maternal factors, particularly via variation in yolk hormone concentrations of maternal origin. In the present study we tested whether variation in yolk hormone levels lead to variation in the expression of neophobia in young domestic chicks. Understanding how the prenatal environment could predispose chicks to express fear-related behaviors is essential in order to propose preventive actions and improve animal welfare. We simulated the consequences of a maternal stress by experimentally enhancing yolk progesterone, testosterone and estradiol concentrations in hen eggs prior to incubation. The chicks from these hormone-treated eggs (H and from sham embryos (C that received the vehicle-only were exposed to novel food, novel object and novel environment tests. H chicks approached a novel object significantly faster and were significantly more active in a novel environment than controls, suggesting less fearfulness. Conversely, no effect of the treatment was found in food neophobia tests. Our study highlights a developmental influence of yolk hormones on a specific aspect of neophobia. The results suggest that increased yolk hormone levels modulate specifically the probability of exploring novel environments or novel objects in the environment.

  16. Seeking a Higher Level of Arts Integration across the Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sotiropoulou-Zormpala, Marina

    2016-01-01

    To seek a higher level of arts integration across the education curriculum, I investigated designs of teaching through arts activities that would motivate educators to adopt the spirit of "aesthetic teaching." Two different designs were tested, with the second as a continuation of the first. Each ascribes a different educational role to…

  17. Radio frequency plasma nitriding of aluminium at higher power levels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gredelj, Sabina; Kumar, Sunil; Gerson, Andrea R.; Cavallaro, Giuseppe P.

    2006-01-01

    Nitriding of aluminium 2011 using a radio frequency plasma at higher power levels (500 and 700 W) and lower substrate temperature (500 deg. C) resulted in higher AlN/Al 2 O 3 ratios than obtained at 100 W and 575 deg. C. AlN/Al 2 O 3 ratios derived from X-ray photoelectron spectroscopic analysis (and corroborated by heavy ion elastic recoil time of flight spectrometry) for treatments preformed at 100 (575 deg. C), 500 (500 deg. C) and 700 W (500 deg. C) were 1.0, 1.5 and 3.3, respectively. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that plasma nitrided surfaces obtained at higher power levels exhibited much finer nodular morphology than obtained at 100 W

  18. Upwind methods for the Baer–Nunziato equations and higher-order reconstruction using artificial viscosity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fraysse, F.; Redondo, C.; Rubio, G.; Valero, E.

    2016-01-01

    This article is devoted to the numerical discretisation of the hyperbolic two-phase flow model of Baer and Nunziato. A special attention is paid on the discretisation of intercell flux functions in the framework of Finite Volume and Discontinuous Galerkin approaches, where care has to be taken to efficiently approximate the non-conservative products inherent to the model equations. Various upwind approximate Riemann solvers have been tested on a bench of discontinuous test cases. New discretisation schemes are proposed in a Discontinuous Galerkin framework following the criterion of Abgrall and the path-conservative formalism. A stabilisation technique based on artificial viscosity is applied to the high-order Discontinuous Galerkin method and compared against classical TVD-MUSCL Finite Volume flux reconstruction.

  19. Upwind methods for the Baer–Nunziato equations and higher-order reconstruction using artificial viscosity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fraysse, F., E-mail: francois.fraysse@rs2n.eu [RS2N, St. Zacharie (France); E. T. S. de Ingeniería Aeronáutica y del Espacio, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Madrid (Spain); Redondo, C.; Rubio, G.; Valero, E. [E. T. S. de Ingeniería Aeronáutica y del Espacio, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Madrid (Spain)

    2016-12-01

    This article is devoted to the numerical discretisation of the hyperbolic two-phase flow model of Baer and Nunziato. A special attention is paid on the discretisation of intercell flux functions in the framework of Finite Volume and Discontinuous Galerkin approaches, where care has to be taken to efficiently approximate the non-conservative products inherent to the model equations. Various upwind approximate Riemann solvers have been tested on a bench of discontinuous test cases. New discretisation schemes are proposed in a Discontinuous Galerkin framework following the criterion of Abgrall and the path-conservative formalism. A stabilisation technique based on artificial viscosity is applied to the high-order Discontinuous Galerkin method and compared against classical TVD-MUSCL Finite Volume flux reconstruction.

  20. An artificial pancreas provided a novel model of blood glucose level variability in beagles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munekage, Masaya; Yatabe, Tomoaki; Kitagawa, Hiroyuki; Takezaki, Yuka; Tamura, Takahiko; Namikawa, Tsutomu; Hanazaki, Kazuhiro

    2015-12-01

    Although the effects on prognosis of blood glucose level variability have gained increasing attention, it is unclear whether blood glucose level variability itself or the manifestation of pathological conditions that worsen prognosis. Then, previous reports have not been published on variability models of perioperative blood glucose levels. The aim of this study is to establish a novel variability model of blood glucose concentration using an artificial pancreas. We maintained six healthy, male beagles. After anesthesia induction, a 20-G venous catheter was inserted in the right femoral vein and an artificial pancreas (STG-22, Nikkiso Co. Ltd., Tokyo, Japan) was connected for continuous blood glucose monitoring and glucose management. After achieving muscle relaxation, total pancreatectomy was performed. After 1 h of stabilization, automatic blood glucose control was initiated using the artificial pancreas. Blood glucose level varied for 8 h, alternating between the target blood glucose values of 170 and 70 mg/dL. Eight hours later, the experiment was concluded. Total pancreatectomy was performed for 62 ± 13 min. Blood glucose swings were achieved 9.8 ± 2.3 times. The average blood glucose level was 128.1 ± 5.1 mg/dL with an SD of 44.6 ± 3.9 mg/dL. The potassium levels after stabilization and at the end of the experiment were 3.5 ± 0.3 and 3.1 ± 0.5 mmol/L, respectively. In conclusion, the results of the present study demonstrated that an artificial pancreas contributed to the establishment of a novel variability model of blood glucose levels in beagles.

  1. Higher fuel prices are associated with lower air pollution levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnett, Adrian G; Knibbs, Luke D

    2014-05-01

    Air pollution is a persistent problem in urban areas, and traffic emissions are a major cause of poor air quality. Policies to curb pollution levels often involve raising the price of using private vehicles, for example, congestion charges. We were interested in whether higher fuel prices were associated with decreased air pollution levels. We examined an association between diesel and petrol prices and four traffic-related pollutants in Brisbane from 2010 to 2013. We used a regression model and examined pollution levels up to 16 days after the price change. Higher diesel prices were associated with statistically significant short-term reductions in carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides. Changes in petrol prices had no impact on air pollution. Raising diesel taxes in Australia could be justified as a public health measure. As raising taxes is politically unpopular, an alternative political approach would be to remove schemes that put a downward pressure on fuel prices, such as industry subsidies and shopping vouchers that give fuel discounts. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Franck--Hertz experiment with higher excitation level measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, F.H.

    1987-01-01

    The measurement of the higher levels of 6 3 P 2 and 6 1 P 1 of the mercury atom in the Franck--Hertz experiment has been introduced into the junior and senior laboratory course by using a homemade tetrode Franck--Hertz tube. The main structure of the tube is described. The optimum operating conditions are in the temperature range between 130 and 150 0 C and the collector currents are of the order of 10 -9 A. The additional observations of the famous Franck--Hertz experiment in the laboratory course will give the students more familiarity with the quantum behavior of atoms

  3. Higher-level gait disorders: an open frontier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nutt, John G

    2013-09-15

    The term higher-level gait disorders (HLGD) defines a category of balance and gait disorders that are not explained by deficits in strength, tone, sensation, or coordination. HLGD are characterized by various combinations of disequilibrium and impaired locomotion. A plethora of new imaging techniques are beginning to determine the neural circuits that are the basis of these disorders. Although a variety of neurodegenerative and other pathologies can produce HLGD, the most common cause appears to be microvascular disease that causes white-matter lesions and thereby disrupts balance/locomotor circuits. © 2013 Movement Disorder Society.

  4. Biomechanics of Artificial Disc Replacements Adjacent to a 2-Level Fusion in 4-Level Hybrid Constructs: An In Vitro Investigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Zhenhua; Fogel, Guy R.; Wei, Na; Gu, Hongsheng; Liu, Weiqiang

    2015-01-01

    Background The ideal procedure for multilevel cervical degenerative disc diseases remains controversial. Recent studies on hybrid surgery combining anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) and artificial cervical disc replacement (ACDR) for 2-level and 3-level constructs have been reported in the literature. The purpose of this study was to estimate the biomechanics of 3 kinds of 4-level hybrid constructs, which are more likely to be used clinically compared to 4-level arthrodesis. Material/Methods Eighteen human cadaveric spines (C2–T1) were evaluated in different testing conditions: intact, with 3 kinds of 4-level hybrid constructs (hybrid C3–4 ACDR+C4–6 ACDF+C6–7ACDR; hybrid C3–5ACDF+C5–6ACDR+C6–7ACDR; hybrid C3–4ACDR+C4–5ACDR+C5–7ACDF); and 4-level fusion. Results Four-level fusion resulted in significant decrease in the C3–C7 ROM compared with the intact spine. The 3 different 4-level hybrid treatment groups caused only slight change at the instrumented levels compared to intact except for flexion. At the adjacent levels, 4-level fusion resulted in significant increase of contribution of both upper and lower adjacent levels. However, for the 3 hybrid constructs, significant changes of motion increase far lower than 4P at adjacent levels were only noted in partial loading conditions. No destabilizing effect or hypermobility were observed in any 4-level hybrid construct. Conclusions Four-level fusion significantly eliminated motion within the construct and increased motion at the adjacent segments. For all 3 different 4-level hybrid constructs, ACDR normalized motion of the index segment and adjacent segments with no significant hypermobility. Compared with the 4-level ACDF condition, the artificial discs in 4-level hybrid constructs had biomechanical advantages compared to fusion in normalizing adjacent level motion. PMID:26694835

  5. A higher-level MRP supertree of placental mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bininda-Emonds Olaf RP

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The higher-level phylogeny of placental mammals has long been a phylogenetic Gordian knot, with disagreement about both the precise contents of, and relationships between, the extant orders. A recent MRP supertree that favoured 'outdated' hypotheses (notably, monophyly of both Artiodactyla and Lipotyphla has been heavily criticised for including low-quality and redundant data. We apply a stringent data selection protocol designed to minimise these problems to a much-expanded data set of morphological, molecular and combined source trees, to produce a supertree that includes every family of extant placental mammals. Results The supertree is well-resolved and supports both polyphyly of Lipotyphla and paraphyly of Artiodactyla with respect to Cetacea. The existence of four 'superorders' – Afrotheria, Xenarthra, Laurasiatheria and Euarchontoglires – is also supported. The topology is highly congruent with recent (molecular phylogenetic analyses of placental mammals, but is considerably more comprehensive, being the first phylogeny to include all 113 extant families without making a priori assumptions of suprafamilial monophyly. Subsidiary analyses reveal that the data selection protocol played a key role in the major changes relative to a previously published higher-level supertree of placentals. Conclusion The supertree should provide a useful framework for hypothesis testing in phylogenetic comparative biology, and supports the idea that biogeography has played a crucial role in the evolution of placental mammals. Our results demonstrate the importance of minimising poor and redundant data when constructing supertrees.

  6. Higher Level Visual Cortex Represents Retinotopic, Not Spatiotopic, Object Location

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanwisher, Nancy

    2012-01-01

    The crux of vision is to identify objects and determine their locations in the environment. Although initial visual representations are necessarily retinotopic (eye centered), interaction with the real world requires spatiotopic (absolute) location information. We asked whether higher level human visual cortex—important for stable object recognition and action—contains information about retinotopic and/or spatiotopic object position. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging multivariate pattern analysis techniques, we found information about both object category and object location in each of the ventral, dorsal, and early visual regions tested, replicating previous reports. By manipulating fixation position and stimulus position, we then tested whether these location representations were retinotopic or spatiotopic. Crucially, all location information was purely retinotopic. This pattern persisted when location information was irrelevant to the task, and even when spatiotopic (not retinotopic) stimulus position was explicitly emphasized. We also conducted a “searchlight” analysis across our entire scanned volume to explore additional cortex but again found predominantly retinotopic representations. The lack of explicit spatiotopic representations suggests that spatiotopic object position may instead be computed indirectly and continually reconstructed with each eye movement. Thus, despite our subjective impression that visual information is spatiotopic, even in higher level visual cortex, object location continues to be represented in retinotopic coordinates. PMID:22190434

  7. Damage Level Prediction of Reinforced Concrete Building Based on Earthquake Time History Using Artificial Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suryanita Reni

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The strong motion earthquake could cause the building damage in case of the building not considered in the earthquake design of the building. The study aims to predict the damage-level of building due to earthquake using Artificial Neural Networks method. The building model is a reinforced concrete building with ten floors and height between floors is 3.6 m. The model building received a load of the earthquake based on nine earthquake time history records. Each time history scaled to 0,5g, 0,75g, and 1,0g. The Artificial Neural Networks are designed in 4 architectural models using the MATLAB program. Model 1 used the displacement, velocity, and acceleration as input and Model 2 used the displacement only as the input. Model 3 used the velocity as input, and Model 4 used the acceleration just as input. The output of the Neural Networks is the damage level of the building with the category of Safe (1, Immediate Occupancy (2, Life Safety (3 or in a condition of Collapse Prevention (4. According to the results, Neural Network models have the prediction rate of the damage level between 85%-95%. Therefore, one of the solutions for analyzing the structural responses and the damage level promptly and efficiently when the earthquake occurred is by using Artificial Neural Network

  8. Improved prediction of higher heating value of biomass using an artificial neural network model based on proximate analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uzun, Harun; Yıldız, Zeynep; Goldfarb, Jillian L; Ceylan, Selim

    2017-06-01

    As biomass becomes more integrated into our energy feedstocks, the ability to predict its combustion enthalpies from routine data such as carbon, ash, and moisture content enables rapid decisions about utilization. The present work constructs a novel artificial neural network model with a 3-3-1 tangent sigmoid architecture to predict biomasses' higher heating values from only their proximate analyses, requiring minimal specificity as compared to models based on elemental composition. The model presented has a considerably higher correlation coefficient (0.963) and lower root mean square (0.375), mean absolute (0.328), and mean bias errors (0.010) than other models presented in the literature which, at least when applied to the present data set, tend to under-predict the combustion enthalpy. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Daily water level forecasting using wavelet decomposition and artificial intelligence techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, Youngmin; Kim, Sungwon; Kisi, Ozgur; Singh, Vijay P.

    2015-01-01

    Reliable water level forecasting for reservoir inflow is essential for reservoir operation. The objective of this paper is to develop and apply two hybrid models for daily water level forecasting and investigate their accuracy. These two hybrid models are wavelet-based artificial neural network (WANN) and wavelet-based adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (WANFIS). Wavelet decomposition is employed to decompose an input time series into approximation and detail components. The decomposed time series are used as inputs to artificial neural networks (ANN) and adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS) for WANN and WANFIS models, respectively. Based on statistical performance indexes, the WANN and WANFIS models are found to produce better efficiency than the ANN and ANFIS models. WANFIS7-sym10 yields the best performance among all other models. It is found that wavelet decomposition improves the accuracy of ANN and ANFIS. This study evaluates the accuracy of the WANN and WANFIS models for different mother wavelets, including Daubechies, Symmlet and Coiflet wavelets. It is found that the model performance is dependent on input sets and mother wavelets, and the wavelet decomposition using mother wavelet, db10, can further improve the efficiency of ANN and ANFIS models. Results obtained from this study indicate that the conjunction of wavelet decomposition and artificial intelligence models can be a useful tool for accurate forecasting daily water level and can yield better efficiency than the conventional forecasting models.

  10. Extension of TFTR operations to higher toroidal field levels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woolley, R.D.

    1995-01-01

    For the past year, TFTR has sometimes operated at extended toroidal field (TF) levels. The extension to 5.6 Tesla (79 kA) was crucial for TFTR's November 1994 10.7 MW DT fusion power record. The extension to 6.0 Tesla (85 kA) was commissioned on 9 September 1995. There are several reasons that one could expect the TF coils to survive the higher stresses that develop at higher fields. They were designed to operate at 5.2 Tesla with a vertical field of 0.5 Tesla, whereas the actual vertical field needed for the plasma does not exceed 0.35 Tesla. Their design specification explicitly required they survive some pulses at 6.0 Tesla. TF coil mechanical analysis computer models available during coil design were crude, leading to conservative design. And design analyses also had to consider worst-case misoperations that TFTR's real time Coil Protection Calculators (CPCs) now positively prevent from occurring

  11. Light-Triggered Soft Artificial Muscles: Molecular-Level Amplification of Actuation Control Signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dicker, Michael P M; Baker, Anna B; Iredale, Robert J; Naficy, Sina; Bond, Ian P; Faul, Charl F J; Rossiter, Jonathan M; Spinks, Geoffrey M; Weaver, Paul M

    2017-08-23

    The principle of control signal amplification is found in all actuation systems, from engineered devices through to the operation of biological muscles. However, current engineering approaches require the use of hard and bulky external switches or valves, incompatible with both the properties of emerging soft artificial muscle technology and those of the bioinspired robotic systems they enable. To address this deficiency a biomimetic molecular-level approach is developed that employs light, with its excellent spatial and temporal control properties, to actuate soft, pH-responsive hydrogel artificial muscles. Although this actuation is triggered by light, it is largely powered by the resulting excitation and runaway chemical reaction of a light-sensitive acid autocatalytic solution in which the actuator is immersed. This process produces actuation strains of up to 45% and a three-fold chemical amplification of the controlling light-trigger, realising a new strategy for the creation of highly functional soft actuating systems.

  12. Areas with higher levels of natural radioactivity. Pt. 5

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sansoni, B.; Technische Univ. Muenchen, Freising

    1989-12-01

    The maple source I delivers 'radon containing water' for possible cure applications with sufficiently high radon concentrations of about 40 nCi Rn-222/l, extremely low concentration of radium and other solution containing materials, and is exceptional among radon medicinal baths used up to now for radon medicinal cures in the Federal Republic of Germany. Radon balneology is especially important for rheumatic diseases. It concerns a stimulation therapy also for chronic diseases which otherwise do not have any effect on it. From the view of radiation protection, medicinal cures with radon become justifiable if standpoints of radiation protection for artificial radioactivity is transferred correspondingly to natural radioactivity which has not been laid down by legislation up to now. Balneology and medicine are to prove the usefulness of medicinal cures with radon in a way that can stand the limits of statistics. Spa doctor and spa staff have to subject to a normal control for radiation protection. (orig./HSCH) [de

  13. Higher order corrections to energy levels of muonic atoms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rinker, G.A. Jr.; Steffen, R.M.

    1975-08-01

    In order to facilitate the analysis of muonic x-ray spectra, the results of numerical computations of all higher order quantum electrodynamical corrections to the energy levels of muonic atoms are presented in tabular and graphical form. These corrections include the vacuum polarization corrections caused by emission and reabsorption of virtual electron pairs to all orders, including ''double-bubble'' and ''cracked-egg'' diagrams. An estimate of the Delbruecke scattering-type correction is presented. The Lamb-shift (second- and fourth-order vertex) corrections have been calculated including the correction for the anomalous magnetic moment of the muon. The relativistic nuclear motion (or recoil) correction as well as the correction caused by the screening of the atomic electrons is presented in graphs. For the sake of completeness a graph of the nuclear polarization as computed on the basis of Chen's approach has been included. All calculations were made with a two-parameter Fermi distribution of the nuclear charge density. 7 figures, 23 references

  14. Toward raising the higher level of radiological nursing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kusama, Tomoko; Ban, Nobuhiko; Ono, Koji

    2013-01-01

    The role and purpose of nursing in the radiological field are discussed with essentials of radiological nursing for raising its higher level and needed fundamental education. The discussion is from the thought that, at Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Accident (Mar. 2011), general medical staff including nurses are rather insufficient of radiological knowledge like the exposure, radiation effect and risk. In the medical radiological field, nurses are expected to play roles of arranging the circumstance for patient's ease like explanation about health effect/risk, appropriate nursing of them after radiological diagnosis, radiation protection of nurses themselves, and of environment. At such an emergency as the Accident, care for the acutely exposed victims, their decontamination and responding to patient's concern are necessary. At the later phase, also needed are nursing of victims undergoing health management done by authorities and of radiological workers concerned as well as the third item above. Therefore, fundamentals of radiological knowledge such as physics, exposure, health effects, protection, contamination, legal rules and risk communication are required in the education of nurses. Otherwise, this education can be conducted as a part of safety security and physical assessment. The Accident also gives us the importance of radiological risk communication with its victims. (T.T.)

  15. Modification of booming level for higher correlation with booming sensation; Booming level no koseidoka

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hatano, S; Hashimoto, T [Seikei University, Tokyo (Japan)

    1997-10-01

    In our previous study, we proposed a objective measure, i.e., Booming Level for quantifying booming sensation caused by car interior noise. In this paper, Booming Level was modified with its weighting function and within the process of calculation 1/3 octave band level was modified for the best match with subjective result. These modifications were conducted through a subjective experiment rating booming sensation with sounds having much lower frequency contents below 63Hz. With this modified Booming Level, we have obtained higher correlation for rating booming sensation with sounds having prominent low frequency components. 1 ref., 10 figs.

  16. Identifying and Fostering Higher Levels of Geometric Thinking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Škrbec, Maja; Cadež, Tatjana Hodnik

    2015-01-01

    Pierre M. Van Hiele created five levels of geometric thinking. We decided to identify the level of geometric thinking in the students in Slovenia, aged 9 to 11 years. The majority of students (60.7%) are at the transition between the zero (visual) level and the first (descriptive) level of geometric thinking. Nearly a third (31.7%) of students is…

  17. Good Old-Fashioned Artificial Consciousness and the Intermediate Level Fallacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riccardo Manzotti

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Recently, there has been considerable interest and effort to the possibility to design and implement conscious robots, i.e., the chance that robots may have subjective experiences. Typical approaches as the global workspace, information integration, enaction, cognitive mechanisms, embodiment, i.e., the Good Old-Fashioned Artificial Consciousness, henceforth, GOFAC, share the same conceptual framework. In this paper, we discuss GOFAC's basic tenets and their implication for AI and Robotics. In particular, we point out the intermediate level fallacy as the central issue affecting GOFAC. Finally, we outline a possible alternative conceptual framework toward robot consciousness.

  18. Short communication: Artificial ultraviolet B light exposure increases vitamin D levels in cow plasma and milk

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, Jette; Jensen, Søren Krogh; Hymøller, Lone

    2015-01-01

    tested the ability of a specially designed UVB lamp to enhance the vitamin D-3 content in milk from dairy cows housed indoors. This study included 16 cows divided into 4 groups. Each group was exposed daily to artificial UVB light simulating 1, 2, 3, or 4 h of summer sun at 56 degrees N for 24 d...... exposure to artificial UVB light to 73 d did not lead to an increase of vitamin D-3 or 25OHD(3) level in the milk. In conclusion, the change in production facilities for dairy cows providing cows with no access to pasture and sunlight causes a decrease of vitamin D levels in dairy products. This decrease......The number of dairy cows without access to pasture or sunlight is increasing; therefore, the content of vitamin D in dairy products is decreasing. Ultimately, declining vitamin D levels in dairy products will mean that dairy products are a negligible source of natural vitamin D for humans. We...

  19. Application of Artificial Neural Network into the Water Level Modeling and Forecast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marzenna Sztobryn

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The dangerous sea and river water level increase does not only destroy the human lives, but also generate the severe flooding in coastal areas. The rapidly changes in the direction and velocity of wind and associated with them sea level changes could be the severe threat for navigation, especially on the fairways of small fishery harbors located in the river mouth. There is the area of activity of two external forcing: storm surges and flood wave. The aim of the work was the description of an application of Artificial Neural Network (ANN methodology into the water level forecast in the case study field in Swibno harbor located is located at 938.7 km of the Wisla River and at a distance of about 3 km up the mouth (Gulf of Gdansk - Baltic Sea.

  20. Comparison of hybrid spectral-decomposition artificial neural network models for understanding climatic forcing of groundwater levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrokwah, K.; O'Reilly, A. M.

    2017-12-01

    Groundwater is an important resource that is extracted every day because of its invaluable use for domestic, industrial and agricultural purposes. The need for sustaining groundwater resources is clearly indicated by declining water levels and has led to modeling and forecasting accurate groundwater levels. In this study, spectral decomposition of climatic forcing time series was used to develop hybrid wavelet analysis (WA) and moving window average (MWA) artificial neural network (ANN) models. These techniques are explored by modeling historical groundwater levels in order to provide understanding of potential causes of the observed groundwater-level fluctuations. Selection of the appropriate decomposition level for WA and window size for MWA helps in understanding the important time scales of climatic forcing, such as rainfall, that influence water levels. Discrete wavelet transform (DWT) is used to decompose the input time-series data into various levels of approximate and details wavelet coefficients, whilst MWA acts as a low-pass signal-filtering technique for removing high-frequency signals from the input data. The variables used to develop and validate the models were daily average rainfall measurements from five National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration (NOAA) weather stations and daily water-level measurements from two wells recorded from 1978 to 2008 in central Florida, USA. Using different decomposition levels and different window sizes, several WA-ANN and MWA-ANN models for simulating the water levels were created and their relative performances compared against each other. The WA-ANN models performed better than the corresponding MWA-ANN models; also higher decomposition levels of the input signal by the DWT gave the best results. The results obtained show the applicability and feasibility of hybrid WA-ANN and MWA-ANN models for simulating daily water levels using only climatic forcing time series as model inputs.

  1. 'Twisted' strings and higher level Kac-Moody representations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horvath, Z.; Palla, L.

    1989-01-01

    Using an orbifold-like construction the twisted sector of a closed string moving on GxG (with G simply laced) is determined. A level-two G current operating there is constructed explicitly. The decomposition of the twisted sector into products between appropriate conformal and level-two G representations is given if 2 rank G-2 dim G/(2+g)<1. (orig.)

  2. Macroinvertebrate assemblages and biodiversity levels: ecological role of constructed wetlands and artificial ponds in a natural park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Sartori

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Normal 0 14 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 Constructed wetlands play an important role in water supply, floodwater retention and nutrient removal, at the same time allowing the restoration of lost habitat and the preservation of biodiversity. There is little knowledge about the biodiversity that can be found in these artificial environments along time, especially at the invertebrate community level. Macroinvertebrate assemblages, water chemistry, morphology, and environmental characteristics of natural ponds, artificial pools and constructed wetlands in Parco Pineta (Northern Italy were studied to evaluate the effects of local factors on macroinvertebrate communities. The objective was to verify if each ecosystem could equally contribute to local biodiversity, regardless of its natural or artificial origin. Principal Components Analysis showed that ponds were divided into clusters, based on their morphology and their water quality, independently from their origin. The composition of macroinvertebrate communities was similar among natural wetlands and ponds artificially created to provide new habitats in the park, while it was different among natural wetlands and constructed wetlands created for wastewater treatment purposes. Biodiversity of natural ponds and constructed wetlands, evaluated using taxa richness, Shannon index, and Pielou index, was comparable. Canonical Correspondence Analysis highlighted differences in macroinvertebrate community composition and pointed out the relationships among macroinvertebrates and various environmental variables: habitat heterogeneity resulted as the most relevant factor that influences taxa richness. Water quality also affects the macroinvertebrate community structure. We determined that constructed wetlands with higher pollutant concentrations show different assemblage compositions but comparable overall macroinvertebrate biodiversity. Constructed wetlands became valuable ecological elements

  3. Academic literacy of South African higher education level students ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Kate H

    Specifically, measuring vocabulary size, i.e. how many words a student knows ... The focus of this module is on basic research skills, critical thinking, finding and ..... (x) Make meaning (e.g. of an academic text) beyond the level of the sentence. ..... 25. 30. Total 275 28.05. 2.72 .16. 9. 30. 2000- word. 2. 38. 28.50. 1.62 .26. 24.

  4. Trials to determine levels of oviposition of Anastrepha fraterculus (Wied.) on fruit and artificial oviposition devices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alama, D.

    1999-01-01

    The current work was conducted in order to determine the level of oviposition of Anastrepha fraterculus on fresh mangos and artificial oviposition devices. Four trials were carried out during which freshly harvested fruit was exposed to wild South American adult fruit flies. The following viable oviposition/day/kg of fruit (viable ovipositions = emerged adults) were established: 79.16, 71.25, 83.6 and 60.6. The trials were carried out at 25 deg. C - 28 deg. C and 60%-80% relative humidity. Beginning with the first generation one trial was carried out which confirmed the acceptance of sexually mature females to oviposit on red oviposition devices consisting of wax-covered cloth. However, red plastic containers with holes of 0.5 mm did not produce good results. (author)

  5. The relationship between diver experience levels and perceptions of attractiveness of artificial reefs - examination of a potential management tool.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne E Kirkbride-Smith

    Full Text Available Artificial reefs are increasingly used worldwide as a method for managing recreational diving since they have the potential to satisfy both conservation goals and economic interests. In order to help maximize their utility, further information is needed to drive the design of stimulating resources for scuba divers. We used a questionnaire survey to explore divers' perceptions of artificial reefs in Barbados. In addition, we examined reef resource substitution behaviour among scuba divers. Divers expressed a clear preference for large shipwrecks or sunken vessels that provided a themed diving experience. Motives for diving on artificial reefs were varied, but were dominated by the chance of viewing concentrated marine life, increased photographic opportunities, and the guarantee of a 'good dive'. Satisfaction with artificial reef diving was high amongst novices and declined with increasing experience. Experienced divers had an overwhelming preference for natural reefs. As a management strategy, our results emphasize the capacity of well designed artificial reefs to contribute towards the management of coral reef diving sites and highlight a number of important areas for future research. Suggested work should validate the present findings in different marine tourism settings and ascertain support of artificial reefs in relationship to level of diver specialization.

  6. Change of direction ability test differentiates higher level and lower level soccer referees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Los, Arcos A; Grande, I; Casajús, JA

    2016-01-01

    This report examines the agility and level of acceleration capacity of Spanish soccer referees and investigates the possible differences between field referees of different categories. The speed test consisted of 3 maximum acceleration stretches of 15 metres. The change of direction ability (CODA) test used in this study was a modification of the Modified Agility Test (MAT). The study included a sample of 41 Spanish soccer field referees from the Navarre Committee of Soccer Referees divided into two groups: i) the higher level group (G1, n = 20): 2ndA, 2ndB and 3rd division referees from the Spanish National Soccer League (28.43 ± 1.39 years); and ii) the lower level group (G2, n = 21): Navarre Provincial League soccer referees (29.54 ± 1.87 years). Significant differences were found with respect to the CODA between G1 (5.72 ± 0.13 s) and G2 (6.06 ± 0.30 s), while no differences were encountered between groups in acceleration ability. No significant correlations were obtained in G1 between agility and the capacity to accelerate. Significant correlations were found between sprint and agility times in the G2 and in the total group. The results of this study showed that agility can be used as a discriminating factor for differentiating between national and regional field referees; however, no observable differences were found over the 5 and 15 m sprint tests. PMID:27274111

  7. Multi-Level Interval Estimation for Locating damage in Structures by Using Artificial Neural Networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pan Danguang; Gao Yanhua; Song Junlei

    2010-01-01

    A new analysis technique, called multi-level interval estimation method, is developed for locating damage in structures. In this method, the artificial neural networks (ANN) analysis method is combined with the statistics theory to estimate the range of damage location. The ANN is multilayer perceptron trained by back-propagation. Natural frequencies and modal shape at a few selected points are used as input to identify the location and severity of damage. Considering the large-scale structures which have lots of elements, multi-level interval estimation method is developed to reduce the estimation range of damage location step-by-step. Every step, estimation range of damage location is obtained from the output of ANN by using the method of interval estimation. The next ANN training cases are selected from the estimation range after linear transform, and the output of new ANN estimation range of damage location will gained a reduced estimation range. Two numerical example analyses on 10-bar truss and 100-bar truss are presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.

  8. Classification of a Driver's cognitive workload levels using artificial neural network on ECG signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tjolleng, Amir; Jung, Kihyo; Hong, Wongi; Lee, Wonsup; Lee, Baekhee; You, Heecheon; Son, Joonwoo; Park, Seikwon

    2017-03-01

    An artificial neural network (ANN) model was developed in the present study to classify the level of a driver's cognitive workload based on electrocardiography (ECG). ECG signals were measured on 15 male participants while they performed a simulated driving task as a primary task with/without an N-back task as a secondary task. Three time-domain ECG measures (mean inter-beat interval (IBI), standard deviation of IBIs, and root mean squared difference of adjacent IBIs) and three frequencydomain ECG measures (power in low frequency, power in high frequency, and ratio of power in low and high frequencies) were calculated. To compensate for individual differences in heart response during the driving tasks, a three-step data processing procedure was performed to ECG signals of each participant: (1) selection of two most sensitive ECG measures, (2) definition of three (low, medium, and high) cognitive workload levels, and (3) normalization of the selected ECG measures. An ANN model was constructed using a feed-forward network and scaled conjugate gradient as a back-propagation learning rule. The accuracy of the ANN classification model was found satisfactory for learning data (95%) and testing data (82%). Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Elevated serum estradiol levels in artificial autologous frozen embryo transfer cycles negatively impact ongoing pregnancy and live birth rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritz, Rani; Jindal, Sangita; Feil, Heather; Buyuk, Erkan

    2017-12-01

    The aim of this study is to evaluate the correlation between serum estradiol (E 2 ) levels during artificial autologous frozen embryo transfer (FET) cycles and ongoing pregnancy/live birth rates (OP/LB). A historical cohort study was conducted in an academic setting in order to correlate peak and average estradiol levels with ongoing pregnancy/live birth rates for all autologous artificial frozen embryo transfer cycles performed from 1/2011 to 12/2014. Average and peak E 2 levels from 110 autologous artificial FET cycles from 95 patients were analyzed. Average E 2 levels were significantly lower in cycles resulting in OP/LB compared to those that did not (234.1 ± 16.6 pg/ml vs. 315 ± 24.8 pg/ml, respectively, p = 0.04). Although peak E 2 levels were not significantly different between cycles resulting in OP/LB compared with those that did not (366.9 ± 27.7 pg/ml vs. 459.1 ± 32.3 pg/ml, respectively, p = 0.19), correlation analysis revealed a statistically significant (p = 0.02) downward trend in OP/LB rates with increasing peak E 2 levels. This study suggests that elevated E 2 levels in artificial autologous FET cycles are associated with lower OP/LB rates. Estradiol levels should be monitored during artificial FET cycles.

  10. The response of macroinvertebrates to artificially enhanced detritus levels in plantation streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pretty, J. L.; Dobson, M.

    The leaves and wood from vegetation surrounding headwater streams constitute a major food source for aquatic invertebrates, providing they are retained upon the streambed and not transported downstream. This study investigated the response of aquatic invertebrates to artificially increased detritus retention, in an effort to reproduce the naturally occurring build up of dead organic matter associated with streams in old-growth forest. The background detrital standing stock in streams in Kielder Forest (Northumberland, UK) was low, approximately 32 gm-2. Two streams flowing through dense conifer plantation and one in open broadleaved woodland were manipulated by the addition of logs over a 10 m stream reach. After several months, log addition significantly enhanced detrital standing stocks in both conifer and broadleaved streams. Total invertebrate abundance, taxon richness and the numbers of certain numerically dominant families were significantly higher in experimental than reference reaches in both conifer and broadleaved streams. This response was most marked for detritivores, whilst non-detritivore groups often showed no response to the manipulation. Whilst in the short term the responses to enhanced retention may reflect a redistribution of the local fauna, it is argued that over a longer time-scale, a genuine increase in invertebrate density and diversity could occur. Allowing old-growth forest to develop in planted valley bottoms may be a viable management option for conservation. If established alongside streams, it would ensure continuous input of woody material and the fauna may benefit from the resulting increase in detritus retention.

  11. Higher transcription levels in ascorbic acid biosynthetic and recycling genes were associated with higher ascorbic acid accumulation in blueberry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Fenghong; Wang, Lei; Gu, Liang; Zhao, Wei; Su, Hongyan; Cheng, Xianhao

    2015-12-01

    In our preliminary study, the ripe fruits of two highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum L.) cultivars, cv 'Berkeley' and cv 'Bluecrop', were found to contain different levels of ascorbic acid. However, factors responsible for these differences are still unknown. In the present study, ascorbic acid content in fruits was compared with expression profiles of ascorbic acid biosynthetic and recycling genes between 'Bluecrop' and 'Berkeley' cultivars. The results indicated that the l-galactose pathway was the predominant route of ascorbic acid biosynthesis in blueberry fruits. Moreover, higher expression levels of the ascorbic acid biosynthetic genes GME, GGP, and GLDH, as well as the recycling genes MDHAR and DHAR, were associated with higher ascorbic acid content in 'Bluecrop' compared with 'Berkeley', which indicated that a higher efficiency ascorbic acid biosynthesis and regeneration was likely to be responsible for the higher ascorbic acid accumulation in 'Bluecrop'. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. [Effect of artificial mountain climate on the functional state of higher regions of the central nervous system in man].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berezovskiĭ, V A; Levashov, M I

    2009-01-01

    The study included 97 patients with vegetative vascular dystonia and chronic non-specific pulmonary diseases exposed to artificial high-altitude climate in an Orotron climatic chamber during 2 weeks. Atmospheric conditions maintained in the chamber had the following parameters: partial pressure of oxygen--147-160 gPa, relative humidity--60-70%, air temperature--16-18 degrees C, light aeroion content--up to 6000 cub.cm. It was shown that the exposure to artificial mountain climatic conditions enhanced functional mobility of nervous processes and decreased the length of the sensorimotor reactions of the patients. Individual differences in the change of parameters being measured depended on the degree of initial functional flexibility of nervous processes.

  13. Human Health Impact of Natural and Artificial Radioactivity Levels in the Sediments and Fish of Bonny Estuary, Niger Delta, Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bolaji B. Babatunde

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available There is widespread contamination of the environment of the Niger Delta, which may include enhanced background levels of naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM due to oil production and rapid urbanization activities. Sediments and seafood from the Bonny estuary, Niger Delta, were collected for the purpose of determining baseline data on artificial and natural radioactivity and estimation of effective doses for the public due to ingestion of seafood from the study area. The highest and lowest activity concentrations were reported for 40K and 137Cs in both sediments and fish samples of the Bonny estuary. There was some evidence of spatial variability in the 40K and 137Cs data, with the latter being the likely result of dredging. Other radionuclides were not significantly different between sites impacted by industrial activities or not. Activity of radionuclides measured in the sediments of the study area were higher than reported elsewhere in the Niger Delta and Nigeria and higher than reported global averages by UNSCEAR. The total highest activity concentration in all fish species of gamma emitting radionuclides was observed for 40K, followed by 238U, 232Th and 226Ra, respectively, while 137Cs had the lowest activity concentration. However, 210Po activities were the most important in terms of dose contribution. Consumption of molluscs at typical rates could result in doses exceeding 1 mSv·y−1. Although this baseline data may not be conclusive on prevailing trends in radioactivity in the study area, higher consumption rates of the species studied may have public health consequences due to effects of low dose ionising radiation.

  14. Forecasting of Groundwater Level using Artificial Neural Network by incorporating river recharge and river bank infiltration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nizar Shamsuddin Mohd Khairul

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Groundwater tables forecasting during implemented river bank infiltration (RBI method is important to identify adequate storage of groundwater aquifer for water supply purposes. This study illustrates the development and application of artificial neural networks (ANNs to predict groundwater tables in two vertical wells located in confined aquifer adjacent to the Langat River. ANN model was used in this study is based on the long period forecasting of daily groundwater tables. ANN models were carried out to predict groundwater tables for 1 day ahead at two different geological materials. The input to the ANN models consider of daily rainfall, river stage, water level, stream flow rate, temperature and groundwater level. Two different type of ANNs structure were used to predict the fluctuation of groundwater tables and compared the best forecasting values. The performance of different models structure of the ANN is used to identify the fluctuation of the groundwater table and provide acceptable predictions. Dynamics prediction and time series of the system can be implemented in two possible ways of modelling. The coefficient correlation (R, Mean Square Error (MSE, Root Mean Square Error (RMSE and coefficient determination (R2 were chosen as the selection criteria of the best model. The statistical values for DW1 are 0.8649, 0.0356, 0.01, and 0.748 respectively. While for DW2 the statistical values are 0.7392, 0.0781, 0.0139, and 0.546 respectively. Based on these results, it clearly shows that accurate predictions can be achieved with time series 1-day ahead of forecasting groundwater table and the interaction between river and aquifer can be examine. The findings of the study can be used to assist policy marker to manage groundwater resources by using RBI method.

  15. The response of macroinvertebrates to artificially enhanced detritus levels in plantation streams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. L. Pretty

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available The leaves and wood from vegetation surrounding headwater streams constitute a major food source for aquatic invertebrates, providing they are retained upon the streambed and not transported downstream. This study investigated the response of aquatic invertebrates to artificially increased detritus retention, in an effort to reproduce the naturally occurring build up of dead organic matter associated with streams in old-growth forest. The background detrital standing stock in streams in Kielder Forest (Northumberland, UK was low, approximately 32 gm-2. Two streams flowing through dense conifer plantation and one in open broadleaved woodland were manipulated by the addition of logs over a 10 m stream reach. After several months, log addition significantly enhanced detrital standing stocks in both conifer and broadleaved streams. Total invertebrate abundance, taxon richness and the numbers of certain numerically dominant families were significantly higher in experimental than reference reaches in both conifer and broadleaved streams. This response was most marked for detritivores, whilst non-detritivore groups often showed no response to the manipulation. Whilst in the short term the responses to enhanced retention may reflect a redistribution of the local fauna, it is argued that over a longer time-scale, a genuine increase in invertebrate density and diversity could occur. Allowing old-growth forest to develop in planted valley bottoms may be a viable management option for conservation. If established alongside streams, it would ensure continuous input of woody material and the fauna may benefit from the resulting increase in detritus retention. Keywords: forestry, detritivores, old-growth conifers, river management, woody debris

  16. An Artificial Neural Network for Movement Pattern Analysis to Estimate Blood Alcohol Content Level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gharani, Pedram; Suffoletto, Brian; Chung, Tammy; Karimi, Hassan A

    2017-12-13

    Impairments in gait occur after alcohol consumption, and, if detected in real-time, could guide the delivery of "just-in-time" injury prevention interventions. We aimed to identify the salient features of gait that could be used for estimating blood alcohol content (BAC) level in a typical drinking environment. We recruited 10 young adults with a history of heavy drinking to test our research app. During four consecutive Fridays and Saturdays, every hour from 8 p.m. to 12 a.m., they were prompted to use the app to report alcohol consumption and complete a 5-step straight-line walking task, during which 3-axis acceleration and angular velocity data was sampled at a frequency of 100 Hz. BAC for each subject was calculated. From sensor signals, 24 features were calculated using a sliding window technique, including energy, mean, and standard deviation. Using an artificial neural network (ANN), we performed regression analysis to define a model determining association between gait features and BACs. Part (70%) of the data was then used as a training dataset, and the results tested and validated using the rest of the samples. We evaluated different training algorithms for the neural network and the result showed that a Bayesian regularization neural network (BRNN) was the most efficient and accurate. Analyses support the use of the tandem gait task paired with our approach to reliably estimate BAC based on gait features. Results from this work could be useful in designing effective prevention interventions to reduce risky behaviors during periods of alcohol consumption.

  17. An Artificial Neural Network for Movement Pattern Analysis to Estimate Blood Alcohol Content Level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedram Gharani

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Impairments in gait occur after alcohol consumption, and, if detected in real-time, could guide the delivery of “just-in-time” injury prevention interventions. We aimed to identify the salient features of gait that could be used for estimating blood alcohol content (BAC level in a typical drinking environment. We recruited 10 young adults with a history of heavy drinking to test our research app. During four consecutive Fridays and Saturdays, every hour from 8 p.m. to 12 a.m., they were prompted to use the app to report alcohol consumption and complete a 5-step straight-line walking task, during which 3-axis acceleration and angular velocity data was sampled at a frequency of 100 Hz. BAC for each subject was calculated. From sensor signals, 24 features were calculated using a sliding window technique, including energy, mean, and standard deviation. Using an artificial neural network (ANN, we performed regression analysis to define a model determining association between gait features and BACs. Part (70% of the data was then used as a training dataset, and the results tested and validated using the rest of the samples. We evaluated different training algorithms for the neural network and the result showed that a Bayesian regularization neural network (BRNN was the most efficient and accurate. Analyses support the use of the tandem gait task paired with our approach to reliably estimate BAC based on gait features. Results from this work could be useful in designing effective prevention interventions to reduce risky behaviors during periods of alcohol consumption.

  18. An empirical study on educational investment for all levels of higher education in China

    OpenAIRE

    YANG Juan; David MAYSTON

    2009-01-01

    With the expanding of higher education in China from 1999, more and more youngsters are able to invest in higher education, resulting a high unemployment rate for higher education graduates and more and more graduates employed in non-graduate position, while the analysis upon risk and return to each level of high education is absent due to the limitation of dataset. The paper employs college students sample survey to research the determinants of all levels of higher education beginning wages,...

  19. Predictors of Placement in Lower Level versus Higher Level High School Mathematics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archbald, Doug; Farley-Ripple, Elizabeth N.

    2012-01-01

    Educators and researchers have long been interested in determinants of access to honors level and college prep courses in high school. Factors influencing access to upper level mathematics courses are particularly important because of the hierarchical and sequential nature of this subject and because students who finish high school with only lower…

  20. A model to predict the level of artificial radionuclides in environmental materials in the Severn Estuary and the Bristol Channel

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McColl, N.P.

    1988-01-01

    The NRPB SEVERN compartment model, of the Bristol Channel and Severn Estuary, has been developed for used in predicting environmental concentrations of artificial radionuclides present in the estuary. A comparison between predicted and measured values of salinity and environmental 137 Cs concentrations has demonstrated the overall validity of the model. SEVERN has been used to assess the radiological impact of radionuclides present in the estuary which result from low-level routine discharges from the nuclear power industry. (author)

  1. APPLICATION OF ARTIFICIAL NEURAL NETWORKS FOR PREDICTION OF AIR POLLUTION LEVELS IN ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Małgorzata Pawul

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Recently, a lot of attention was paid to the improvement of methods which are used to air quality forecasting. Artificial neural networks can be applied to model these problems. Their advantage is that they can solve the problem in the conditions of incomplete information, without the knowledge of the analytical relationship between the input and output data. In this paper we applied artificial neural networks to predict the PM 10 concentrations as factors determining the occurrence of smog phenomena. To create these networks we used meteorological data and concentrations of PM 10. The data were recorded in 2014 and 2015 at three measuring stations operating in Krakow under the State Environmental Monitoring. The best results were obtained by three-layer perceptron with back-propagation algorithm. The neural networks received a good fit in all cases.

  2. Egyptian greenhouse cultivation at a higher level with Dutch Technology ; Annual Report 2013

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Elings, A.; Helm, van der F.P.M.; Blok, C.; Meijer, R.J.M.; Lahiani, Y.; Janmaat, A.; Zaki, M.; Hassan, H.

    2014-01-01

    The project ‘Egyptian greenhouse cultivation at a higher level with Dutch technology’ is co-funded under the Top Sector Programme Horticulture and Starting Materials. The project wants to realizes through the use of Dutch technology a higher level of sustainability of Egyptian protected cultivation,

  3. Higher Storage Temperature Causes Greater Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Internal Penetration of Artificially Contaminated, Commercially Available, Washed Free Range Eggs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whiley, Alice; Fallowfield, Howard; Ross, Kirstin; McEvoy, Vanessa; Whiley, Harriet

    2016-07-01

    Foodborne salmonellosis is a major public health concern, with contaminated eggs identified as a significant source of infection. In Australia, the most prevalent cause of salmonellosis from eggs is Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica serovar Typhimurium. This study explored the effect of temperature after 1, 7, 14, 21, and 28 days of storage on commercially available washed free range eggs, artificially contaminated with Salmonella Typhimurium on the external surface. At each time point, the external surface of the egg, the crushed eggshell, and the internal egg yolk and albumen were analyzed for Salmonella. After 28 days of storage, 25% of eggs stored at 4°C, 50% of eggs stored at 14°C, and 100% of eggs stored at 23 and 35°C were internally contaminated with Salmonella. After 1 day of storage, more than 50% of all eggs had Salmonella present in the crushed shell after the external surface had been disinfected with ethanol. This is the first study to demonstrate that refrigeration reduced the potential for Salmonella Typhimurium to penetrate the eggshell membrane and internally contaminate table eggs commercially available in Australia. It also suggests that the processes of cracking eggs may be a source of cross-contamination within the kitchen.

  4. The Prediction of the Risk Level of Pulmonary Embolism and Deep Vein Thrombosis through Artificial Neural Network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agharezaei, Laleh; Agharezaei, Zhila; Nemati, Ali; Bahaadinbeigy, Kambiz; Keynia, Farshid; Baneshi, Mohammad Reza; Iranpour, Abedin; Agharezaei, Moslem

    2016-10-01

    Venous thromboembolism is a common cause of mortality among hospitalized patients and yet it is preventable through detecting the precipitating factors and a prompt diagnosis by specialists. The present study has been carried out in order to assist specialists in the diagnosis and prediction of the risk level of pulmonary embolism in patients, by means of artificial neural network. A number of 31 risk factors have been used in this study in order to evaluate the conditions of 294 patients hospitalized in 3 educational hospitals affiliated with Kerman University of Medical Sciences. Two types of artificial neural networks, namely Feed-Forward Back Propagation and Elman Back Propagation, were compared in this study. Through an optimized artificial neural network model, an accuracy and risk level index of 93.23 percent was achieved and, subsequently, the results have been compared with those obtained from the perfusion scan of the patients. 86.61 percent of high risk patients diagnosed through perfusion scan diagnostic method were also diagnosed correctly through the method proposed in the present study. The results of this study can be a good resource for physicians, medical assistants, and healthcare staff to diagnose high risk patients more precisely and prevent the mortalities. Additionally, expenses and other unnecessary diagnostic methods such as perfusion scans can be efficiently reduced.

  5. Protein levels and colony development of Africanized and European honey bees fed natural and artificial diets

    OpenAIRE

    Morais, Michelle Manfrini [UNIFESP; Turcatto, Aline Patricia; Pereira, Rogerio Aparecido; Francoy, Tiago Mauricio; Guidugli-Lazzarini, Karina Rosa; Goncalves, Lionel Segui; Almeida, Joyce Mayra Volpini de; Ellis, J. D.; De Jong, David

    2013-01-01

    Pollen substitute diets are a valuable resource for maintaining strong and health honey bee colonies. Specific diets may be useful in one region or country and inadequate or economically unviable in others. We compared two artificial protein diets that had been formulated from locally-available ingredients in Brazil with bee bread and a non-protein sucrose diet. Groups of 100 newly-emerged, adult workers of Africanized honey bees in Brazil and European honey bees in the USA were confined in s...

  6. Applications of network analysis for adaptive management of artificial drainage systems in landscapes vulnerable to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poulter, Benjamin; Goodall, Jonathan L.; Halpin, Patrick N.

    2008-08-01

    SummaryThe vulnerability of coastal landscapes to sea level rise is compounded by the existence of extensive artificial drainage networks initially built to lower water tables for agriculture, forestry, and human settlements. These drainage networks are found in landscapes with little topographic relief where channel flow is characterized by bi-directional movement across multiple time-scales and related to precipitation, wind, and tidal patterns. The current configuration of many artificial drainage networks exacerbates impacts associated with sea level rise such as salt-intrusion and increased flooding. This suggests that in the short-term, drainage networks might be managed to mitigate sea level rise related impacts. The challenge, however, is that hydrologic processes in regions where channel flow direction is weakly related to slope and topography require extensive parameterization for numerical models which is limited where network size is on the order of a hundred or more kilometers in total length. Here we present an application of graph theoretic algorithms to efficiently investigate network properties relevant to the management of a large artificial drainage system in coastal North Carolina, USA. We created a digital network model representing the observation network topology and four types of drainage features (canal, collector and field ditches, and streams). We applied betweenness-centrality concepts (using Dijkstra's shortest path algorithm) to determine major hydrologic flowpaths based off of hydraulic resistance. Following this, we identified sub-networks that could be managed independently using a community structure and modularity approach. Lastly, a betweenness-centrality algorithm was applied to identify major shoreline entry points to the network that disproportionately control water movement in and out of the network. We demonstrate that graph theory can be applied to solving management and monitoring problems associated with sea level rise

  7. Control of fixed-wing UAV at levelling phase using artificial intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayfeddine, Daher

    2018-03-01

    The increase in the share of fly-by-wire and software controlled UAV is explained by the need to release the human-operator and the desire to reduce the degree of influence of the human factor errors that account for 26% of aircraft accidents. An important reason for the introduction of new control algorithms is also the high level of UAV failures due loss of communication channels and possible hacking. This accounts for 17% of the total number of accidents. The comparison with manned flights shows that the frequency of accidents of unmanned flights is 27,000 times higher. This means that the UAV has 1611 failures per million flight hours and only 0.06 failures at the same time for the manned flight. In view of that, this paper studies the flight autonomy of fixed-wing UAV at the levelling phase. Landing parameters of the UAV are described. They will be used to setup a control scheme for an autopilot based on fuzzy logic algorithm.

  8. Assessing the Need for Higher Levels of Care Among Problem Gambling Outpatients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledgerwood, David M; Arfken, Cynthia L

    2017-12-01

    Most treatment for gambling disorder is provided on an outpatient basis. Only a small number of jurisdictions in North America provide higher levels of gambling treatment, such as residential or intensive outpatient (IOP) care, despite the potential need for these services. Further, there appear to be few guidelines for determining appropriate level of gambling treatment. The aim of the present study was to assess the appropriateness of higher levels of problem gambling care among clients receiving outpatient treatment. Problem gamblers and their therapists independently completed questionnaires that assessed the need and desire for residential and IOP treatment. About 42% of problem gambling outpatients noted that they would be "probably" or "definitely" willing to attend residential treatment, and about half indicated they would be equally likely to attend IOP. Therapists recommended about a third of their clients as appropriate for higher levels of care. For both client and therapist assessments, there was a significant association between desire or recommendation for level of treatment and severity of gambling and co-occurring problems. Further, therapist recommendations for level of care were significantly associated with client willingness to attend higher levels of treatment. Our data reveal the potential need for higher levels of care for problem gambling, as evaluated by clients and their therapists. Policy implications for the funding of residential and IOP treatment are discussed.

  9. Higher Levels of Psychopathy Predict Poorer Motor Control: Implications for Understanding the Psychopathy Construct

    OpenAIRE

    Robinson, Michael D.; Bresin, Konrad

    2014-01-01

    A review of the literature suggests that higher levels of psychopathy may be linked to less effective behavioral control. However, several commentators have urged caution in making statements of this type in the absence of direct evidence. In two studies (total N = 142), moment-to-moment accuracy in a motor control task was examined as a function of dimensional variations in psychopathy in an undergraduate population. As hypothesized, motor control was distinctively worse at higher levels of ...

  10. Multi-domain, higher order level set scheme for 3D image segmentation on the GPU

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sharma, Ojaswa; Zhang, Qin; Anton, François

    2010-01-01

    to evaluate level set surfaces that are $C^2$ continuous, but are slow due to high computational burden. In this paper, we provide a higher order GPU based solver for fast and efficient segmentation of large volumetric images. We also extend the higher order method to multi-domain segmentation. Our streaming...

  11. Natural and artificial feeding management before weaning promote different rumen microbial colonization but not differences in gene expression levels at the rumen epithelium of newborn goats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abecia, Leticia; Jiménez, Elisabeth; Martínez-Fernandez, Gonzalo; Martín-García, A Ignacio; Ramos-Morales, Eva; Pinloche, Eric; Denman, Stuart E; Newbold, C Jamie; Yáñez-Ruiz, David R

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this work was to evaluate the effect of feeding management during the first month of life (natural with the mother, NAT, or artificial with milk replacer, ART) on the rumen microbial colonization and the host innate immune response. Thirty pregnant goats carrying two fetuses were used. At birth one kid was taken immediately away from the doe and fed milk replacer (ART) while the other remained with the mother (NAT). Kids from groups received colostrum during first 2 days of life. Groups of four kids (from ART and NAT experimental groups) were slaughtered at 1, 3, 7, 14, 21 and 28 days of life. On the sampling day, after slaughtering, the rumen content was sampled and epithelial rumen tissue was collected. Pyrosequencing analyses of the bacterial community structure on samples collected at 3, 7, 14 and 28 days showed that both systems promoted significantly different colonization patterns (P = 0.001). Diversity indices increased with age and were higher in NAT feeding system. Lower mRNA abundance was detected in TLR2, TLR8 and TLR10 in days 3 and 5 compared to the other days (7, 14, 21 and 28). Only TLR5 showed a significantly different level of expression according to the feeding system, presenting higher mRNA abundances in ART kids. PGLYRP1 showed significantly higher abundance levels in days 3, 5 and 7, and then experienced a decline independently of the feeding system. These observations confirmed a highly diverse microbial colonisation from the first day of life in the undeveloped rumen, and show that the colonization pattern substantially differs between pre-ruminants reared under natural or artificial milk feeding systems. However, the rumen epithelial immune development does not differentially respond to distinct microbial colonization patterns.

  12. Natural and artificial feeding management before weaning promote different rumen microbial colonization but not differences in gene expression levels at the rumen epithelium of newborn goats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leticia Abecia

    Full Text Available The aim of this work was to evaluate the effect of feeding management during the first month of life (natural with the mother, NAT, or artificial with milk replacer, ART on the rumen microbial colonization and the host innate immune response. Thirty pregnant goats carrying two fetuses were used. At birth one kid was taken immediately away from the doe and fed milk replacer (ART while the other remained with the mother (NAT. Kids from groups received colostrum during first 2 days of life. Groups of four kids (from ART and NAT experimental groups were slaughtered at 1, 3, 7, 14, 21 and 28 days of life. On the sampling day, after slaughtering, the rumen content was sampled and epithelial rumen tissue was collected. Pyrosequencing analyses of the bacterial community structure on samples collected at 3, 7, 14 and 28 days showed that both systems promoted significantly different colonization patterns (P = 0.001. Diversity indices increased with age and were higher in NAT feeding system. Lower mRNA abundance was detected in TLR2, TLR8 and TLR10 in days 3 and 5 compared to the other days (7, 14, 21 and 28. Only TLR5 showed a significantly different level of expression according to the feeding system, presenting higher mRNA abundances in ART kids. PGLYRP1 showed significantly higher abundance levels in days 3, 5 and 7, and then experienced a decline independently of the feeding system. These observations confirmed a highly diverse microbial colonisation from the first day of life in the undeveloped rumen, and show that the colonization pattern substantially differs between pre-ruminants reared under natural or artificial milk feeding systems. However, the rumen epithelial immune development does not differentially respond to distinct microbial colonization patterns.

  13. Comparison of Groundwater Level Models Based on Artificial Neural Networks and ANFIS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djurovic, Nevenka; Domazet, Milka; Stricevic, Ruzica; Pocuca, Vesna; Spalevic, Velibor; Pivic, Radmila; Gregoric, Enika; Domazet, Uros

    2015-01-01

    Water table forecasting plays an important role in the management of groundwater resources in agricultural regions where there are drainage systems in river valleys. The results presented in this paper pertain to an area along the left bank of the Danube River, in the Province of Vojvodina, which is the northern part of Serbia. Two soft computing techniques were used in this research: an adaptive neurofuzzy inference system (ANFIS) and an artificial neural network (ANN) model for one-month water table forecasts at several wells located at different distances from the river. The results suggest that both these techniques represent useful tools for modeling hydrological processes in agriculture, with similar computing and memory capabilities, such that they constitute an exceptionally good numerical framework for generating high-quality models.

  14. Comparison of Groundwater Level Models Based on Artificial Neural Networks and ANFIS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nevenka Djurovic

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Water table forecasting plays an important role in the management of groundwater resources in agricultural regions where there are drainage systems in river valleys. The results presented in this paper pertain to an area along the left bank of the Danube River, in the Province of Vojvodina, which is the northern part of Serbia. Two soft computing techniques were used in this research: an adaptive neurofuzzy inference system (ANFIS and an artificial neural network (ANN model for one-month water table forecasts at several wells located at different distances from the river. The results suggest that both these techniques represent useful tools for modeling hydrological processes in agriculture, with similar computing and memory capabilities, such that they constitute an exceptionally good numerical framework for generating high-quality models.

  15. STAND-LEVEL PROGNOSIS OF EUCALYPTUS CLONES USING ARTIFICIAL NEURAL NETWORKS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayra Luiza Marques da Silva Binoti

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to train, implement and evaluate the efficiency of artificial neural networks (ANN to perform production prognosis of even-aged stands of eucalyptus clones. The data used were from plantations located in southern Bahia, totaling about 2,000 acres of forest. Numeric variables, such as age, basal area, volume and categorical variables, such as soil class texture, spacing, land relief, project and clone were used. The data were randomly divided into two groups: training (80% and generalization (20%. Three types of networks were trained: perceptron, multilayer perceptron networks and radial basis function. The RNA that showed the best performance in training and generalization were selected to perform the prognosis with data from the first forest inventory. We conclude that the RNA had satisfactory results, showing the potential and applicability of the technique in solving measurement and forest management problems.

  16. Performance of Nellore males under different artificial shading levels in the feedlot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diogo Alves da Costa Ferro

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of artificial shading on weight gain and meat quality of male Nellore cattle in an intensive production system. The experiment was conducted in the experimental feedlot of the Course of Animal Science at Universidade Estadual de Goiás, from July to October 2014. Forty-eight male Nellore cattle with an average initial weight of 310 kg were kept in double 24-m2 stalls, in a total of 24 stalls. Of these, six were in the open air; six were covered with black shade netting of 30% light interception; six with black shade netting 50%; and six with black shade netting 80%, providing 6 m2 of shade per stall. The ration supplied to the animals and the orts left in the trough were weighed daily to determine intake, and the temperature-humidity index (THI was measured twice weekly. Animals were weighed for the first time at the start of the experiment, and then another three times until the end, which was followed by the slaughter and assessments of performance and meat quality. A difference (p 0.05 was observed for feed intake, initial weight, final weight, total weight gain, average daily weight gain, carcass yield, marbling, texture, fatness, backfat thickness, loin-eye area, color, thigh length and circumference, leg length and circumference, or carcass length between the animals on the different treatments. The use of artificial shading does not have a significant effect on performance or meat quality of feedlot Nellore cattle when the ambient temperature is within the thermal comfort zone.

  17. Perceived Effectiveness of Professional Development Programs of Teachers at Higher Education Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malik, Sufiana Khatoon; Nasim, Uzma; Tabassum, Farkhanda

    2015-01-01

    The major purpose of the study was to assess the perceived effectiveness of professional development programs of teachers at higher educational level. The objectives of the study were: "to assess university level teachers'" opinion about effectiveness of professional development training with reference to quality teaching, to measure…

  18. Student's Perceived Level and Teachers' Teaching Strategies of Higher Order Thinking Skills: A Study on Higher Educational Institutions in Thailand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shukla, Divya; Dungsungnoen, Aj Pattaradanai

    2016-01-01

    Higher order thinking skills (HOTS) has portrayed immense industry demand and the major goal of educational institution in imparting education is to inculcate higher order thinking skills. This compiles and mandate the institutions and instructor to develop the higher order thinking skills among students in order to prepare them for effective…

  19. PRE-SERVICE MATHEMATICS TEACHERS’ CONCEPTION OF HIGHER-ORDER THINKING LEVEL IN BLOOM'S TAXONOMY

    OpenAIRE

    Damianus D Samo

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to explore pre-service mathematics teachers' conception of higher-order thinking in Bloom's Taxonomy, to explore pre-service mathematics teachers' ability in categorizing six cognitive levels of Bloom's Taxonomy as lower-order thinking and higher-order thinking, and pre-service mathematics teachers' ability in identifying some questionable items as lower-order and higher-order thinking. The higher-order thinking is the type of non-algorithm thinking which include ...

  20. Noise and vibration levels in artificial polar bear dens as related to selected petroleum exploration and developmental activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blix, A.S.; Lentfer, J.W.

    1992-01-01

    Petroleum exploration and development are occurring in various locations in the Arctic, where there are important denning sites for polar bears. Petroleum activities usually coincide with winter denning activities by bears, who may abandon dens if subject to prolonged annoyance. A study was carried out to measure noise and vibration levels in artificial polar bear dens at Prudhoe's Bar, Alaska, resulting from seismic testing, drilling and transport. A microphone and an accelerometer were frozen to the floor of the dens, with leads passed through a consolidated snow filled entrance to a truck, tent or helicopter. Tests were carried out on land, sea ice, and next to a drilling tower on an artificial island, which was also used to measure noise levels resulting from a helicopter taking off. It was concluded that the dry and wind-beaten arctic snow muffles both sound and vibration extremely well, and it is unlikely that polar bears in their dens will be disturbed by the type of petroleum-related activities measured, provided they do not take place within 100 m of the dens. 8 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab

  1. Intake of Lutein-Rich Vegetables Is Associated with Higher Levels of Physical Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Georgina Crichton

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Levels of physical inactivity, a major contributor to burden of disease, are high in many countries. Some preliminary research suggests that circulating lutein concentrations are associated with high levels of physical activity (PA. We aimed to assess whether the intake of lutein-containing foods, including vegetables and eggs, is associated with levels of PA in two studies conducted in different countries. Dietary data and PA data collected from participants in two cross-sectional studies: the Maine-Syracuse Longitudinal Study (MSLS, conducted in Central New York, USA (n = 972, and the Observation of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Luxembourg Study (ORISCAV-LUX (n = 1331 were analyzed. Higher intakes of lutein containing foods, including green leafy vegetables, were associated with higher levels of PA in both study sites. Increasing the consumption of lutein-rich foods may have the potential to impact positively on levels of PA. This needs to be further explored in randomized controlled trials.

  2. Predicting the Water Level Fluctuation in an Alpine Lake Using Physically Based, Artificial Neural Network, and Time Series Forecasting Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chih-Chieh Young

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Accurate prediction of water level fluctuation is important in lake management due to its significant impacts in various aspects. This study utilizes four model approaches to predict water levels in the Yuan-Yang Lake (YYL in Taiwan: a three-dimensional hydrodynamic model, an artificial neural network (ANN model (back propagation neural network, BPNN, a time series forecasting (autoregressive moving average with exogenous inputs, ARMAX model, and a combined hydrodynamic and ANN model. Particularly, the black-box ANN model and physically based hydrodynamic model are coupled to more accurately predict water level fluctuation. Hourly water level data (a total of 7296 observations was collected for model calibration (training and validation. Three statistical indicators (mean absolute error, root mean square error, and coefficient of correlation were adopted to evaluate model performances. Overall, the results demonstrate that the hydrodynamic model can satisfactorily predict hourly water level changes during the calibration stage but not for the validation stage. The ANN and ARMAX models better predict the water level than the hydrodynamic model does. Meanwhile, the results from an ANN model are superior to those by the ARMAX model in both training and validation phases. The novel proposed concept using a three-dimensional hydrodynamic model in conjunction with an ANN model has clearly shown the improved prediction accuracy for the water level fluctuation.

  3. Storytelling in the digital world: achieving higher-level learning objectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, Melissa R

    2012-01-01

    Nursing students are not passive media consumers but instead live in a technology ecosystem where digital is the language they speak. To prepare the next generation of nurses, educators must incorporate multiple technologies to improve higher-order learning. The author discusses the evolution and use of storytelling as part of the digital world and how digital stories can be aligned with Bloom's Taxonomy so that students achieve higher-level learning objectives.

  4. Consequences of moral Kohlberg´s moral development levels in higher education

    OpenAIRE

    Bordignon, Nelso Antonio

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Introduction. This article presents the results of a research work about the implications of Kohlberg´s moral development level in higher education. Objective. To identify the state of moral development among higher education teachers, departing from the orientation they give to their lives and to those of their students, and from what they think and say they do for their students´ moral education.With the results, an analysis is done in order to establish the impli...

  5. Trophic assimilation efficiency markedly increases at higher trophic levels in four-level host-parasitoid food chain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Dirk; Moser, Andrea; Newton, Jason; van Veen, F J Frank

    2016-03-16

    Trophic assimilation efficiency (conversion of resource biomass into consumer biomass) is thought to be a limiting factor for food chain length in natural communities. In host-parasitoid systems, which account for the majority of terrestrial consumer interactions, a high trophic assimilation efficiency may be expected at higher trophic levels because of the close match of resource composition of host tissue and the consumer's resource requirements, which would allow for longer food chains. We measured efficiency of biomass transfer along an aphid-primary-secondary-tertiary parasitoid food chain and used stable isotope analysis to confirm trophic levels. We show high efficiency in biomass transfer along the food chain. From the third to the fourth trophic level, the proportion of host biomass transferred was 45%, 65% and 73%, respectively, for three secondary parasitoid species. For two parasitoid species that can act at the fourth and fifth trophic levels, we show markedly increased trophic assimilation efficiencies at the higher trophic level, which increased from 45 to 63% and 73 to 93%, respectively. In common with other food chains, δ(15)N increased with trophic level, with trophic discrimination factors (Δ(15)N) 1.34 and 1.49‰ from primary parasitoids to endoparasitic and ectoparasitic secondary parasitoids, respectively, and 0.78‰ from secondary to tertiary parasitoids. Owing to the extraordinarily high efficiency of hyperparasitoids, cryptic higher trophic levels may exist in host-parasitoid communities, which could alter our understanding of the dynamics and drivers of community structure of these important systems. © 2016 The Authors.

  6. Factors associated with higher levels of depressive symptoms among international university students in the Philippines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Romeo B; Maria, Madelene Sta; Estanislao, Susana; Rodriguez, Cristina

    2013-11-01

    Over the years, the number of international university students has been increasing in the Philippines. Depression tends to be common among this demographic sector, because of the varying challenges and expectations associated with studying abroad. Depression can be prevented if its symptoms, particularly those at higher levels, are identified and addressed early and effectively. This survey examined the social and demographic factors that are significantly associated with higher levels of depressive symptoms. One hundred twenty-six international university students were interviewed using the University Students Depression Inventory. Of the 13 factors analyzed, 3 were found with statistically significant associations with more intense levels of depressive symptoms. These factors were: level of satisfaction with one's financial condition, level of closeness with parents, and level of closeness with peers. In identifying international students with greater risk for depression, characteristics related to their financial condition and primary group relationships can be considered. There is a need to carry out more studies to confirm this initial evidence. The findings can help guide further discourse, research and program to benefit international students with higher levels of depressive symptoms.

  7. Obese with higher FNDC5/Irisin levels have a better metabolic profile, lower lipopolysaccharide levels and type 2 diabetes risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonfante, Ivan Luiz Padilha; Chacon-Mikahil, Mara Patricia Traina; Brunelli, Diego Trevisan; Gáspari, Arthur Fernandes; Duft, Renata Garbellini; Oliveira, Alexandre Gabarra; Araujo, Tiago Gomes; Saad, Mario Jose Abdalla; Cavaglieri, Cláudia Regina

    2017-12-01

    Thus, the aim of this study was to compare if higher or smaller fibronectin type 3 domain-containing protein 5 (FNDC5)/irisin levels are associated with inflammatory and metabolic markers, caloric/macronutrient intake, physical fitness and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) risk in obese middle-aged men, and also to correlate all variables analyzed with FNDC5/irisin. On the basis of a cluster study, middle-aged obese men (IMC: 31.01 ± 1.64 kg/m2) were divided into groups of higher and smaller levels of FNDC5/irisin. The levels of leptin, resistin, adiponectin, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα), interleukin 6 and 10 (IL6, IL10), lipopolysaccharide (LPS), glucose, insulin, glycated hemoglobin, insulin resistance and sensibility, lipid profile, risk of T2DM development, body composition, rest energy expenditure, caloric/macronutrient intake and physical fitness were measured. The higher FNDC5/ irisin group presented improved insulin sensibility (homeostasis model assessment - sensibility (HOMA-S) (p = 0.01) and QUICKI index (p risk of T2DM development (p = 0.02), tendency to decrease serum resistin (p = 0.08) and significant lower LPS levels (p = 0.02). Inverse correlations between FNDC5/irisin and body weight (r -0.46, p = 0.04), neck circumference (r -0.51, p = 0.02), free fat mass (r -0.49, p = 0.02), triglycerides (r -0.43, p = 0.05) and risk of developing T2DM (r -0.61, p = 0.04) were observed. These results suggest that higher FNDC5/irisin levels in obese middle-aged men are related to a better metabolic profile and lower risk of T2DM development and serum LPS, a potential inducer of insulin resistance.

  8. Cerebrospinal fluid cortisol levels are higher in patients with delirium versus controls

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    White Timothy O

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background High plasma cortisol levels can cause acute cognitive and neuropsychiatric dysfunction, and have been linked with delirium. CSF cortisol levels more closely reflect brain exposure to cortisol, but there are no studies of CSF cortisol levels in delirium. In this pilot study we acquired CSF specimens at the onset of spinal anaesthesia in patients undergoing hip fracture surgery, and compared CSF and plasma cortisol levels in delirium cases versus controls. Findings Delirium assessments were performed the evening before or on the morning of operation with a standard battery comprising cognitive tests, mental status assessments and the Confusion Assessment Method. CSF and plasma samples were obtained at the onset of the operation and cortisol levels measured. Twenty patients (15 female, 5 male aged 62 - 93 years were studied. Seven patients were diagnosed with delirium. The mean ages of cases (81.4 (SD 7.2 and controls (80.5 (SD 8.7 were not significantly different (p = 0.88. The median (interquartile range CSF cortisol levels were significantly higher in cases (63.9 (40.4-102.1 nmol/L than controls (31.4 (21.7-43.3 nmol/L; Mann-Whitney U, p = 0.029. The median (interquartile range of plasma cortisol was also significantly higher in cases (968.8 (886.2-1394.4 nmol/L, than controls (809.4 (544.0-986.4 nmol/L; Mann Whitney U, p = 0.036. Conclusions These findings support an association between higher CSF cortisol levels and delirium. This extends previous findings linking higher plasma cortisol and delirium, and suggests that more definitive studies of the relationship between cortisol levels and delirium are now required.

  9. Multisensory Stimulation to Improve Low- and Higher-Level Sensory Deficits after Stroke: A Systematic Review

    OpenAIRE

    Tinga, Angelica Maria; Visser-Meily, Johanna Maria Augusta; van der Smagt, Maarten Jeroen; Van der Stigchel, Stefan; van Ee, Raymond; Nijboer, Tanja Cornelia Wilhelmina

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this systematic review was to integrate and assess evidence for the effectiveness of multisensory stimulation (i.e., stimulating at least two of the following sensory systems: visual, auditory, and somatosensory) as a possible rehabilitation method after stroke. Evidence was considered with a focus on low-level, perceptual (visual, auditory and somatosensory deficits), as well as higher-level, cognitive, sensory deficits. We referred to the electronic databases Scopus and PubMed to...

  10. Higher Plasma Myostatin Levels in Cor Pulmonale Secondary to Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ju, Chun-Rong; Chen, Miao; Zhang, Jian-Heng; Lin, Zhi-Ya; Chen, Rong-Chang

    2016-01-01

    To analyze plasma myostatin levels and investigate their relationship with right ventricular (RV) function in patients with cor pulmonale secondary to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The study recruited 81 patients with advanced COPD and 40 age-matched controls. The patients were divided into two groups: those with cor pulmonale and those without. Echocardiography was used to evaluate RV function and morphology, and the value of tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE) less than 16 mm was considered RV dysfunction. Plasma myostatin levels were analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) levels were analyzed as a comparison of myostatin. The data detected cor pulmonale in 39/81 patients, with the mean value of TAPSE of 14.3 mm. Plasma myostatin levels (ng/mL) were significantly higher in patients with cor pulmonale (16.68 ± 2.95) than in those without (13.56 ± 3.09), and much higher than in controls (8.79±2.79), with each pmyostatin levels were significantly correlated with the values of TAPSE and RV myocardium performance index among the COPD patients, and that BNP levels were significantly correlated only with systolic pulmonary arterial pressure, with each pmyostatin levels are increased in COPD patients who have cor pulmonale. Stronger correlations of plasma myostatin levels with echocardiographic indexes of the right heart suggest that myostatin might be superior to BNP in the early diagnosis of cor pulmonale in COPD.

  11. Does peer learning or higher levels of e-learning improve learning abilities?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Worm, Bjarne Skjødt; Jensen, Kenneth

    2013-01-01

    The fast development of e-learning and social forums demands us to update our understanding of e-learning and peer learning. We aimed to investigate if higher, pre-defined levels of e-learning or social interaction in web forums improved students' learning ability....

  12. Systemic Glucose Level Changes with a Carbohydrate-Restricted and Higher Protein Diet Combined with Exercise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowden, Rodney G.; Lanning, Beth A.; Doyle, Eva I.; Slonaker, Becky; Johnston, Holly M.; Scanes, Georgene

    2007-01-01

    Objective: The authors' purpose in this study was to compare the effects of macronutrient intake on systemic glucose levels in previously sedentary participants who followed 1 of 4 diets that were either higher protein or high carbohydrate, while initiating an exercise program. Participants and Methods: The authors randomly assigned 94 sedentary…

  13. Wellbeing in the Welfare State: level not higher, distribution not more equitable

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    R. Veenhoven (Ruut)

    2000-01-01

    textabstract'Wellbeing' and 'welfare' are often bracketed together, in particular wellbeing and state-welfare. The level of wellbeing is believed to be higher in welfare states, and its distribution more equitable. This theory is tested in a comparative study of 40 nations 1980-1990. The size of

  14. Students' Commitment, Engagement and Locus of Control as Predictor of Academic Achievement at Higher Education Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarwar, Muhammad; Ashrafi, Ghulam Muhammad

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to analyze Students' Commitment, Engagement and Locus of Control as predictors of Academic Achievement at Higher Education Level. We used analytical model and conclusive research approach to conduct study and survey method for data collection. We selected 369 students using multistage sampling technique from three…

  15. Investigating Student Choices in Performing Higher-Level Comprehension Tasks Using TED

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bianchi, Francesca; Marenzi, Ivana

    2016-01-01

    The current paper describes a first experiment in the use of TED talks and open tagging exercises to train higher-level comprehension skills, and of automatic logging of the student's actions to investigate the student choices while performing analytical tasks. The experiment took advantage of an interactive learning platform--LearnWeb--that…

  16. Implementing CLT at Higher Secondary Level in Bangladesh: A Review of Change Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahman, Md Shidur

    2015-01-01

    CLT (Communicative Language Teaching) was substituted for GTM (Grammar Translation Method) at higher secondary level in Bangladesh in 2001. This replacement of ELT method was a significant change in the English curriculum. This study aimed to determine that the mismanagement of the change is a prime cause of not getting expected CLT outcomes at…

  17. Higher-level processes in the formation and application of associations during action understanding

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heil, L.; Pelt, S. van; Kwisthout, J.H.P.; Rooij, I.J.E.I. van; Bekkering, H.

    2014-01-01

    The associative account described in the target article provides a viable explanation for the origin of mirror neurons. We argue here that if mirror neurons develop purely by associative learning, then they cannot by themselves explain intentional action understanding. Higher-level processes seem to

  18. Computerized detection of multiple sclerosis candidate regions based on a level set method using an artificial neural network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuwazuru, Junpei; Magome, Taiki; Arimura, Hidetaka; Yamashita, Yasuo; Oki, Masafumi; Toyofuku, Fukai; Kakeda, Shingo; Yamamoto, Daisuke

    2010-01-01

    Yamamoto et al. developed the system for computer-aided detection of multiple sclerosis (MS) candidate regions. In a level set method in their proposed method, they employed the constant threshold value for the edge indicator function related to a speed function of the level set method. However, it would be appropriate to adjust the threshold value to each MS candidate region, because the edge magnitudes in MS candidates differ from each other. Our purpose of this study was to develop a computerized detection of MS candidate regions in MR images based on a level set method using an artificial neural network (ANN). To adjust the threshold value for the edge indicator function in the level set method to each true positive (TP) and false positive (FP) region, we constructed the ANN. The ANN could provide the suitable threshold value for each candidate region in the proposed level set method so that TP regions can be segmented and FP regions can be removed. Our proposed method detected MS regions at a sensitivity of 82.1% with 0.204 FPs per slice and similarity index of MS candidate regions was 0.717 on average. (author)

  19. Concurrent immunomodulator therapy is associated with higher adalimumab trough levels during scheduled maintenance therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bond, Ashley; Dodd, Susanna; Fisher, Gareth; Skouras, Thomas; Subramanian, Sreedhar

    2017-02-01

    Combination therapy with infliximab and immunomodulators is superior to monotherapy, resulting in better outcomes and higher trough levels of infliximab. The role of concurrent immunomodulatory therapy on adalimumab trough levels has not been adequately investigated. We evaluated the impact of concomitant immunomodulation on adalimumab trough levels in patients on scheduled maintenance therapy. We conducted a prospective observational, cross-sectional study of all inflammatory bowel disease patients on maintenance therapy who had adalimumab trough levels measured between January 2013 and January 2016. Drug level and anti-drug antibody measurements were performed on sera using a solid phase assay. Pairwise comparison of means was used to compare trough levels in patients with and without concomitant immune modulator therapy. In total, 79 patients were included. Twenty-three patients (29.1%) were on weekly dosing whereas 56 (70.9%) were on alternate weeks. Median adalimumab trough levels were comparable in patients with and without clinical remission (6.8 μg/ml (IQR 5.6-8.1) versus 6.7 μg/ml (IQR 3.9-8.1), respectively. Patients with an elevated faecal calprotectin >250 μg/g had lower adalimumab trough levels (median 6.7, IQR 3.9-8) compared to patients with faecal calprotectin <250 μg/g (median 7.7, IQR 6.1-8.1) though this did not achieve statistical significance (p = .062). Median adalimumab trough levels among patients on concurrent immunomodulators was 7.2 μg/ml (IQR 5.7-8.1) compared to those not on concurrent immunomodulator, 6.1 μg/ml (IQR 2.7-7.7, p = .0297). Adalimumab trough levels were significantly higher in patients on concurrent immunomodulators during maintenance therapy. There was a trend towards a lower adalimumab trough level in patients with elevated calprotectin.

  20. Late Holocene higher sea level and its radiocarbon dates in Okierabu-jima, Ryukyus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koba, Motoharu; Omoto, Kunio; Takahashi, Tatsuo.

    1980-01-01

    Okierabu-jima of the Ryukyu Islands, which is a poly-terraced Pleistocene raised coral reef island, doesn't have a Holocene raised coral reef, but coastal erosional features showing higher sea levels in Holocene. The authors obtained some data indicating the period of one of the Holocene higher sea levels. All radiocarbon dates concerning Okierabu-jima's Holocene sea-level changes are plotted on the date-height coordinates. The paleo sea level between 5000 and 2000 y. B. P. lies above the broken line drawn from 6 m below to 2.18 m above the present sea level. The period of the highest sea level in Holocene seems to be about 3000 to 2000 y. B. P. in this island. Its height is presumably 2.4 m a. s. l. derived on an average from heights of stacks and coastal benches in the almost all coasts of the island (Koba, 1974). Beach rocks were already formed at the landward extremity of the reef flat corresponding to the almost present sea level about 1300 y. B. P. (author)

  1. BMI mediates the association between low educational level and higher blood pressure during pregnancy in Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jwa, Seung Chik; Fujiwara, Takeo; Hata, Akira; Arata, Naoko; Sago, Haruhiko; Ohya, Yukihiro

    2013-04-25

    Research investigating the association between socioeconomic status (SES) and blood pressure (BP) during pregnancy is limited and its underlying pathway is unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate the mediators of the association between educational level as an indicator of the SES and BP in early and mid-pregnancy among Japanese women. Nine hundred and twenty-three pregnant women in whom BP was measured before 16 weeks and at 20 weeks of gestation were enrolled in this study. Maternal educational levels were categorized into three groups: high (university or higher), mid (junior college), and low (junior high school, high school, or vocational training school). The low educational group had higher systolic (low vs. high, difference = 2.39 mmHg, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.59 to 4.19) and diastolic BP levels (low vs. high, difference = 0.74 mmHg, 95% CI: -0.52 to 1.99) in early pregnancy. However, the same associations were not found after adjustment for pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI). BP reduction was observed in mid-pregnancy in all three educational groups and there was no association between educational level and pregnancy-induced hypertension. In Japanese women, the low educational group showed higher BP during pregnancy than the mid or high educational groups. Pre-pregnancy BMI mediates the association between educational level and BP.

  2. Effects of low-level laser therapy on orthodontic tooth movement and root resorption after artificial socket preservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massoud Seifi

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Low- level laser therapy has been used to stimulate the orthodontic tooth movements (OTM previously. Furthermore, in the orthodontic treatments accompanying tooth extractions, the adjacent teeth move towards the extraction sites and close the space in some cases. Then, the adjacent tooth movements must be prevented in the treatments requiring space. Laser stimulates and at some doses decelerates tooth movement; it also improves healing process and enhances osteogenesis. Hence, it can prevent movement by osteogenesis adjacent to the tooth. The present study investigated the effects of low-level laser therapy on the OTM and root resorption following artificial socket preservation. Materials and Methods: In this experimental animal trial, 16 male albino rabbits were selected with similar characteristics and randomly divided in two groups. Under general anesthesia, an artificial socket, 8 mm in height, was created in the mesial aspect of the first premolars of the rabbits and filled with demineralized freeze dried bone allograft (DFDBA. The first premolars were connected to the incisors using nickel titanium coil springs. In experimental group, gallium-aluminum-arsenide (GaAlAs laser was irritated mesial to first premolar where artificial socket was created continuously (808 nm. The cycle was 10 days irritation, 14 days rest, 10 days irritation, 14 days rest (Biostimulation mode. Control group was not laser irradiated. All animals were sacrificed after 48 days and the distance between the distal aspect of the first premolars, and the mesial surface of the second premolars was measured with leaf gauge. The specimens underwent histological assessments. Integrity of root and its resorption was observed under microscope calibration. The size of resorption lacunae was calculated in mm 2 . Normality of data was proved according to Kolmogorov-Smirnov analysis, and Student′s t-test was done. P value less than 0.05 was considered as significant

  3. Effects of low-level laser therapy on orthodontic tooth movement and root resorption after artificial socket preservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seifi, Massoud; Atri, Faezeh; Yazdani, Mohammad Masoud

    2014-01-01

    Low- level laser therapy has been used to stimulate the orthodontic tooth movements (OTM) previously. Furthermore, in the orthodontic treatments accompanying tooth extractions, the adjacent teeth move towards the extraction sites and close the space in some cases. Then, the adjacent tooth movements must be prevented in the treatments requiring space. Laser stimulates and at some doses decelerates tooth movement; it also improves healing process and enhances osteogenesis. Hence, it can prevent movement by osteogenesis adjacent to the tooth. The present study investigated the effects of low-level laser therapy on the OTM and root resorption following artificial socket preservation. In this experimental animal trial, 16 male albino rabbits were selected with similar characteristics and randomly divided in two groups. Under general anesthesia, an artificial socket, 8 mm in height, was created in the mesial aspect of the first premolars of the rabbits and filled with demineralized freeze dried bone allograft (DFDBA). The first premolars were connected to the incisors using nickel titanium coil springs. In experimental group, gallium-aluminum-arsenide (GaAlAs) laser was irritated mesial to first premolar where artificial socket was created continuously (808 nm). The cycle was 10 days irritation, 14 days rest, 10 days irritation, 14 days rest (Biostimulation mode). Control group was not laser irradiated. All animals were sacrificed after 48 days and the distance between the distal aspect of the first premolars, and the mesial surface of the second premolars was measured with leaf gauge. The specimens underwent histological assessments. Integrity of root and its resorption was observed under microscope calibration. The size of resorption lacunae was calculated in mm(2). Normality of data was proved according to Kolmogorov-Smirnov analysis, and Student's t-test was done. P value less than 0.05 was considered as significant. The mean OTM were 5.68 ± 1.21 mm in the control

  4. Modeling level change in Lake Urmia using hybrid artificial intelligence approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esbati, M.; Ahmadieh Khanesar, M.; Shahzadi, Ali

    2017-06-01

    The investigation of water level fluctuations in lakes for protecting them regarding the importance of these water complexes in national and regional scales has found a special place among countries in recent years. The importance of the prediction of water level balance in Lake Urmia is necessary due to several-meter fluctuations in the last decade which help the prevention from possible future losses. For this purpose, in this paper, the performance of adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS) for predicting the lake water level balance has been studied. In addition, for the training of the adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system, particle swarm optimization (PSO) and hybrid backpropagation-recursive least square method algorithm have been used. Moreover, a hybrid method based on particle swarm optimization and recursive least square (PSO-RLS) training algorithm for the training of ANFIS structure is introduced. In order to have a more fare comparison, hybrid particle swarm optimization and gradient descent are also applied. The models have been trained, tested, and validated based on lake level data between 1991 and 2014. For performance evaluation, a comparison is made between these methods. Numerical results obtained show that the proposed methods with a reasonable error have a good performance in water level balance prediction. It is also clear that with continuing the current trend, Lake Urmia will experience more drop in the water level balance in the upcoming years.

  5. Transgenic tobacco plants having a higher level of methionine are more sensitive to oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hacham, Yael; Matityahu, Ifat; Amir, Rachel

    2017-07-01

    Methionine is an essential amino acid the low level of which limits the nutritional quality of plants. We formerly produced transgenic tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) plants overexpressing CYSTATHIONE γ-SYNTHASE (CGS) (FA plants), methionine's main regulatory enzyme. These plants accumulate significantly higher levels of methionine compared with wild-type (WT) plants. The aim of this study was to gain more knowledge about the effect of higher methionine content on the metabolic profile of vegetative tissue and on the morphological and physiological phenotypes. FA plants exhibit slightly reduced growth, and metabolic profiling analysis shows that they have higher contents of stress-related metabolites. Despite this, FA plants were more sensitive to short- and long-term oxidative stresses. In addition, compared with WT plants and transgenic plants expressing an empty vector, the primary metabolic profile of FA was altered less during oxidative stress. Based on morphological and metabolic phenotypes, we strongly proposed that FA plants having higher levels of methionine suffer from stress under non-stress conditions. This might be one of the reasons for their lesser ability to cope with oxidative stress when it appeared. The observation that their metabolic profiling is much less responsive to stress compared with control plants indicates that the delta changes in metabolite contents between non-stress and stress conditions is important for enabling the plants to cope with stress conditions. © 2017 Scandinavian Plant Physiology Society.

  6. Factors identified with higher levels of career satisfaction of physicians in Andalusia, Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Nicolás Peña-Sánchez

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The satisfaction of physicians is a world-wide issue linked with the quality of health services; their satisfaction needs to be studied from a multi-dimensional perspective, considering lower- and higher-order needs. The objectives of this study were to: i measure the career satisfaction of physicians; ii identify differences in the dimensions of career satisfaction; and iii test factors that affect higher- and lower-order needs of satisfaction among physicians working in Andalusian hospitals (Spain. Forty-one percent of 299 eligible physicians participated in a study conducted in six selected hospitals. Physicians reported higher professional, inherent, and performance satisfaction than personal satisfaction. Foreign physicians reported higher levels of personal and performance satisfaction than local physicians, and those who received non-monetary incentives had higher professional and performance satisfaction. In conclusion, physicians in the selected Andalusian hospitals reported low levels of personal satisfaction. Non-monetary incentives were more relevant to influence their career satisfaction. Further investigations are recommended to study differences in the career satisfaction between foreign and local physicians.

  7. An Artificial Neural Network Compensated Output Feedback Power-Level Control for Modular High Temperature Gas-Cooled Reactors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhe Dong

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Small modular reactors (SMRs could be beneficial in providing electricity power safely and also be viable for applications such as seawater desalination and heat production. Due to its inherent safety features, the modular high temperature gas-cooled reactor (MHTGR has been seen as one of the best candidates for building SMR-based nuclear power plants. Since the MHTGR dynamics display high nonlinearity and parameter uncertainty, it is necessary to develop a nonlinear adaptive power-level control law which is not only beneficial to the safe, stable, efficient and autonomous operation of the MHTGR, but also easy to implement practically. In this paper, based on the concept of shifted-ectropy and the physically-based control design approach, it is proved theoretically that the simple proportional-differential (PD output-feedback power-level control can provide asymptotic closed-loop stability. Then, based on the strong approximation capability of the multi-layer perceptron (MLP artificial neural network (ANN, a compensator is established to suppress the negative influence caused by system parameter uncertainty. It is also proved that the MLP-compensated PD power-level control law constituted by an experientially-tuned PD regulator and this MLP-based compensator can guarantee bounded closed-loop stability. Numerical simulation results not only verify the theoretical results, but also illustrate the high performance of this MLP-compensated PD power-level controller in suppressing the oscillation of process variables caused by system parameter uncertainty.

  8. Effects of epidermal growth factor in artificial tear on vitamin C levels of corneal wounded eye tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gönül, B; Kaplan, B; Bilgihan, K; Budak, M T

    2001-04-01

    To investigate the effect of artificial tear (AT) solution and epidermal growth factor (EGF) treatment on the cornea and aqueous humour ascorbic acid (AA) levels of full-thickness corneal wounded eyes. The effect of EGF on the AA levels of aqueous humour and corneal wound tissue was determined in full-thickness corneal wounded rabbit eyes on the seventh post-operative day. There were three groups: untreated controls, AT-treated controls and an EGF+AT-treated experimental group (n = 6 in each group). Corneal wounded eyes were topically treated with 5 microl AT or 5 microl EGF in AT (1 mg/l EGF in AT prepaaration which contained 3.0% carbopol 940) twice daily for 6 days after operation. The wound strengths were also measured on the seventh post-operative day as a measure of wound healing. Statistical analysis was carried out using the Mann-Whitney U-test by Statview program. The wound strengths of corneas, and AA levels of wound tissues and aqueous humour, increased significantly following AT and EGF treatment (p < 0.05). In the corneal wounded eye, aqueous humour serves as a source of vitamin C and there may be a relation between EGF treatment in AT and AA levels of corneal wounded eye tissues.

  9. Development of a technique for level measurement in pressure vessels using thermal probes and artificial neural networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Torres, Walmir Maximo

    2008-01-01

    A technique for level measurement in pressure vessels was developed using thermal probes with internal cooling and artificial neural networks (ANN's). This new concept of thermal probes was experimentally tested in an experimental facility (BETSNI) with two test sections, ST1 and ST2. Two different thermal probes were designed and constructed: concentric tubes probe and U tube probe. A data acquisition system (DAS) was assembled to record the experimental data during the tests. Steady state and transient level tests were carried out and the experimental data obtained were used as learning and recall data sets in the ANN's program RETRO-05 that simulate a multilayer perceptron with backpropagation. The results of the analysis show that the technique can be applied for level measurements in pressure vessel. The technique is applied for a less input temperature data than the initially designed to the probes. The technique is robust and can be used in case of lack of some temperature data. Experimental data available in literature from electrically heated thermal probe were also used in the ANN's analysis producing good results. The results of the ANN's analysis show that the technique can be improved and applied to level measurements in pressure vessels. (author)

  10. Object Categorization in Finer Levels Relies More on Higher Spatial Frequencies and Takes Longer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashtiani, Matin N; Kheradpisheh, Saeed R; Masquelier, Timothée; Ganjtabesh, Mohammad

    2017-01-01

    advantage of the superordinate (resp. basic) level to basic (resp. subordinate) level is mainly due to the computational constraints (the visual system processes higher spatial frequencies more slowly, and categorization in finer levels depends more on these higher spatial frequencies).

  11. Higher plasma level of STIM1, OPG are correlated with stent restenosis after PCI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Haibin; Jiang, Zhian; Liu, Xiangdong; Yang, Zhihui

    2015-01-01

    Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI) is one of the most effective treatments for Coronary Heart Disease (CHD), but the high rate of In Stent Restenosis (ISR) has plagued clinicians after PCI. We aim to investigate the correlation of plasma Stromal Interaction Molecular 1 (STIM1) and Osteoprotegerin (OPG) level with stent restenosis after PCI. A total of 100 consecutive patients with Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) received PCI procedure were recruited. Coronary angiography was performed 8 months after their PCI. Then patients were divided into 2 groups: observation group was composed by patients who existing postoperative stenosis after intervention; Control group was composed by patients with no postoperative stenosis. The plasma levels of STIM, OPG in all patients were tested before and after intervention. Pearson correlation and multiple linear regression analysis were performed to analysis the correlation between STIM, OPG level and postoperative stenosis. 35 cases were divided into observation group and other 65 were divided into control group. The plasma levels of STIM, OPG have no statistical difference before their PCI procedure, but we observed higher level of High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (Hs-CRP) existed in observation group. We observed higher level of plasma STIM, OPG in observation group when compared with control group after PCI procedure (P PCI, which could provide useful information for the restenosis control after PCI.

  12. Electron-positron annihilation into hadrons at the higher-loop levels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nesterenko, A.V. [Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Bogoliubov Laboratory of Theoretical Physics, Dubna (Russian Federation)

    2017-12-15

    The strong corrections to the R-ratio of electron-positron annihilation into hadrons are studied at the higher-loop levels. Specifically, the derivation of a general form of the commonly employed approximate expression for the R-ratio (which constitutes its truncated re-expansion at high energies) is delineated, the appearance of the pertinent π{sup 2}-terms is expounded, and their basic features are examined. It is demonstrated that the validity range of such approximation is strictly limited to √(s)/Λ > exp(π/2) ≅ 4.81 and that it converges rather slowly when the energy scale approaches this value. The spectral function required for the proper calculation of the R-ratio is explicitly derived and its properties at the higher-loop levels are studied. The developed method of calculation of the spectral function enables one to obtain the explicit expression for the latter at an arbitrary loop level. By making use of the derived spectral function the proper expression for the R-ratio is calculated up to the five-loop level and its properties are examined. It is shown that the loop convergence of the proper expression for the R-ratio is better than that of its commonly employed approximation. The impact of the omitted higher-order π{sup 2}-terms on the latter is also discussed. (orig.)

  13. Higher Plasma Myostatin Levels in Cor Pulmonale Secondary to Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Rong Ju

    Full Text Available To analyze plasma myostatin levels and investigate their relationship with right ventricular (RV function in patients with cor pulmonale secondary to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD.The study recruited 81 patients with advanced COPD and 40 age-matched controls. The patients were divided into two groups: those with cor pulmonale and those without. Echocardiography was used to evaluate RV function and morphology, and the value of tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE less than 16 mm was considered RV dysfunction. Plasma myostatin levels were analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP levels were analyzed as a comparison of myostatin.The data detected cor pulmonale in 39/81 patients, with the mean value of TAPSE of 14.3 mm. Plasma myostatin levels (ng/mL were significantly higher in patients with cor pulmonale (16.68 ± 2.95 than in those without (13.56 ± 3.09, and much higher than in controls (8.79±2.79, with each p<0.01. Significant differences were also found in plasma BNP levels among the three groups (p<0.05. Multivariate regression analysis suggested that myostatin levels were significantly correlated with the values of TAPSE and RV myocardium performance index among the COPD patients, and that BNP levels were significantly correlated only with systolic pulmonary arterial pressure, with each p<0.05.Plasma myostatin levels are increased in COPD patients who have cor pulmonale. Stronger correlations of plasma myostatin levels with echocardiographic indexes of the right heart suggest that myostatin might be superior to BNP in the early diagnosis of cor pulmonale in COPD.

  14. Multisensory Stimulation to Improve Low- and Higher-Level Sensory Deficits after Stroke: A Systematic Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tinga, Angelica Maria; Visser-Meily, Johanna Maria Augusta; van der Smagt, Maarten Jeroen; Van der Stigchel, Stefan; van Ee, Raymond; Nijboer, Tanja Cornelia Wilhelmina

    2016-03-01

    The aim of this systematic review was to integrate and assess evidence for the effectiveness of multisensory stimulation (i.e., stimulating at least two of the following sensory systems: visual, auditory, and somatosensory) as a possible rehabilitation method after stroke. Evidence was considered with a focus on low-level, perceptual (visual, auditory and somatosensory deficits), as well as higher-level, cognitive, sensory deficits. We referred to the electronic databases Scopus and PubMed to search for articles that were published before May 2015. Studies were included which evaluated the effects of multisensory stimulation on patients with low- or higher-level sensory deficits caused by stroke. Twenty-one studies were included in this review and the quality of these studies was assessed (based on eight elements: randomization, inclusion of control patient group, blinding of participants, blinding of researchers, follow-up, group size, reporting effect sizes, and reporting time post-stroke). Twenty of the twenty-one included studies demonstrate beneficial effects on low- and/or higher-level sensory deficits after stroke. Notwithstanding these beneficial effects, the quality of the studies is insufficient for valid conclusion that multisensory stimulation can be successfully applied as an effective intervention. A valuable and necessary next step would be to set up well-designed randomized controlled trials to examine the effectiveness of multisensory stimulation as an intervention for low- and/or higher-level sensory deficits after stroke. Finally, we consider the potential mechanisms of multisensory stimulation for rehabilitation to guide this future research.

  15. Genes with stable DNA methylation levels show higher evolutionary conservation than genes with fluctuant DNA methylation levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ruijie; Lv, Wenhua; Luan, Meiwei; Zheng, Jiajia; Shi, Miao; Zhu, Hongjie; Li, Jin; Lv, Hongchao; Zhang, Mingming; Shang, Zhenwei; Duan, Lian; Jiang, Yongshuai

    2015-11-24

    Different human genes often exhibit different degrees of stability in their DNA methylation levels between tissues, samples or cell types. This may be related to the evolution of human genome. Thus, we compared the evolutionary conservation between two types of genes: genes with stable DNA methylation levels (SM genes) and genes with fluctuant DNA methylation levels (FM genes). For long-term evolutionary characteristics between species, we compared the percentage of the orthologous genes, evolutionary rate dn/ds and protein sequence identity. We found that the SM genes had greater percentages of the orthologous genes, lower dn/ds, and higher protein sequence identities in all the 21 species. These results indicated that the SM genes were more evolutionarily conserved than the FM genes. For short-term evolutionary characteristics among human populations, we compared the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) density, and the linkage disequilibrium (LD) degree in HapMap populations and 1000 genomes project populations. We observed that the SM genes had lower SNP densities, and higher degrees of LD in all the 11 HapMap populations and 13 1000 genomes project populations. These results mean that the SM genes had more stable chromosome genetic structures, and were more conserved than the FM genes.

  16. Higher Serum Levels of Free ĸ plus λ Immunoglobulin Light Chains Ameliorate Survival of Hemodialysis Patients

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thilo, Florian; Caspari, Christina; Scholze, Alexandra

    2011-01-01

    Background/Aims: Impaired immune function is common in patients with chronic renal failure. Now, we determined whether serum levels of free immunoglobulin light chains predict mortality in patients with chronic kidney disease stage 5 on hemodialysis. Methods: We performed a prospective cohort study...... of 160 hemodialysis patients with a median follow-up of 15 months (interquartile range, 3-44 months). Serum levels of free κ and λ immunoglobulin light chains were measured at the start of the study. The primary end point was mortality from any cause. Results: In survivors, median serum levels of free κ...... plus λ immunoglobulin light chains were significantly higher compared with nonsurvivors (p light chains above the median compared with patients with serum levels below the median of 210 mg...

  17. Particle swarm optimization based artificial neural network model for forecasting groundwater level in Udupi district

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balavalikar, Supreetha; Nayak, Prabhakar; Shenoy, Narayan; Nayak, Krishnamurthy

    2018-04-01

    The decline in groundwater is a global problem due to increase in population, industries, and environmental aspects such as increase in temperature, decrease in overall rainfall, loss of forests etc. In Udupi district, India, the water source fully depends on the River Swarna for drinking and agriculture purposes. Since the water storage in Bajae dam is declining day-by-day and the people of Udupi district are under immense pressure due to scarcity of drinking water, alternatively depend on ground water. As the groundwater is being heavily used for drinking and agricultural purposes, there is a decline in its water table. Therefore, the groundwater resources must be identified and preserved for human survival. This research proposes a data driven approach for forecasting the groundwater level. The monthly variations in groundwater level and rainfall data in three observation wells located in Brahmavar, Kundapur and Hebri were investigated and the scenarios were examined for 2000-2013. The focus of this research work is to develop an ANN based groundwater level forecasting model and compare with hybrid ANN-PSO forecasting model. The model parameters are tested using different combinations of the data. The results reveal that PSO-ANN based hybrid model gives a better prediction accuracy, than ANN alone.

  18. β-endorphins Plasma Level is Higher in Lean Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) Women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiałka, M; Milewicz, T; Spałkowska, M; Krzyczkowska-Sendrakowska, M; Wasyl, B; Pełka, A; Krzysiek, J

    2016-01-01

    The evaluation the β-endorphin plasma levels in lean women with polycystic ovary syndrome as well as in women without this disorder. The associations between β-endorphins and other laboratory parameters were also investigated. 31 women lean, defined as women with normal range body mass index, 15 with polycystic ovary syndrome and 16 without this disorder were included to the study. In all the patients the level of β-endorphins was measured. Also the diagnostic laboratory profile including hormone assessment was made in all patients. There were significant differences in β-endorphin levels between the 2 groups. The β-endorphin level was higher in the polycystic ovary syndrome group compared to the healthy controls (15.5±4.37 pg/ml vs. 6.9±2.47 pg/ml, ppolycystic ovary syndrome group. Increase in β-endorphin level of 1 pg/ml was associated with an increase of cortisol at 8 am level of 1.134 µg/dl and decrease of sex hormone binding globuline of 0.948 nmol/l in polycystic ovary syndrome group. Our study showed that the levels of β-endorphins were significantly higher in lean patients with polycystic ovary syndrome than in lean controls. Moreover, β-endorphins levels were found to be correlated with other hormonal parameters. In this respect, β-endorphins may play a role in polycystic ovary syndrome pathophysiology. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  19. Higher TSH Levels Within the Normal Range Are Associated With Unexplained Infertility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orouji Jokar, Tahereh; Fourman, Lindsay T; Lee, Hang; Mentzinger, Katherine; Fazeli, Pouneh K

    2018-02-01

    Unexplained infertility (UI), defined as the inability to conceive after 12 months of unprotected intercourse with no diagnosed cause, affects 10% to 30% of infertile couples. An improved understanding of the mechanisms underlying UI could lead to less invasive and less costly treatment strategies. Abnormalities in thyroid function and hyperprolactinemia are well-known causes of infertility, but whether thyrotropin (TSH) and prolactin levels within the normal range are associated with UI is unknown. To compare TSH and prolactin levels in women with UI and women with a normal fertility evaluation except for an azoospermic or severely oligospermic male partner. Cross-sectional study including women evaluated at a large academic health system between 1 January 2000 and 31 December 2012 with normal TSH (levels within the normal range of the assay and ≤5 mIU/L) and normal prolactin levels (≤20 ng/mL) and either UI (n = 187) or no other cause of infertility other than an azoospermic or severely oligospermic partner (n = 52). TSH and prolactin. Women with UI had significantly higher TSH levels than controls [UI: TSH 1.95 mIU/L, interquartile range: (1.54, 2.61); severe male factor: TSH 1.66 mIU/L, interquartile range: (1.25, 2.17); P = 0.003]. This finding remained significant after we controlled for age, body mass index, and smoking status. Nearly twice as many women with UI (26.9%) had a TSH ≥2.5 mIU/L compared with controls (13.5%; P < 0.05). Prolactin levels did not differ between the groups. Women with UI have higher TSH levels compared with a control population. More studies are necessary to determine whether treatment of high-normal TSH levels decreases time to conception in couples with UI. Copyright © 2017 Endocrine Society

  20. Higher glucose levels associated with lower memory and reduced hippocampal microstructure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerti, Lucia; Witte, A Veronica; Winkler, Angela; Grittner, Ulrike; Rujescu, Dan; Flöel, Agnes

    2013-11-12

    For this cross-sectional study, we aimed to elucidate whether higher glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) and glucose levels exert a negative impact on memory performance and hippocampal volume and microstructure in a cohort of healthy, older, nondiabetic individuals without dementia. In 141 individuals (72 women, mean age 63.1 years ± 6.9 SD), memory was tested using the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test. Peripheral levels of fasting HbA1c, glucose, and insulin and 3-tesla MRI scans were acquired to assess hippocampal volume and microstructure, as indicated by gray matter barrier density. Linear regression and simple mediation models were calculated to examine associations among memory, glucose metabolism, and hippocampal parameters. Lower HbA1c and glucose levels were significantly associated with better scores in delayed recall, learning ability, and memory consolidation. In multiple regression models, HbA1c remained strongly associated with memory performance. Moreover, mediation analyses indicated that beneficial effects of lower HbA1c on memory are in part mediated by hippocampal volume and microstructure. Our results indicate that even in the absence of manifest type 2 diabetes mellitus or impaired glucose tolerance, chronically higher blood glucose levels exert a negative influence on cognition, possibly mediated by structural changes in learning-relevant brain areas. Therefore, strategies aimed at lowering glucose levels even in the normal range may beneficially influence cognition in the older population, a hypothesis to be examined in future interventional trials.

  1. Higher-level fusion for military operations based on abductive inference: proof of principle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pantaleev, Aleksandar V.; Josephson, John

    2006-04-01

    The ability of contemporary military commanders to estimate and understand complicated situations already suffers from information overload, and the situation can only grow worse. We describe a prototype application that uses abductive inferencing to fuse information from multiple sensors to evaluate the evidence for higher-level hypotheses that are close to the levels of abstraction needed for decision making (approximately JDL levels 2 and 3). Abductive inference (abduction, inference to the best explanation) is a pattern of reasoning that occurs naturally in diverse settings such as medical diagnosis, criminal investigations, scientific theory formation, and military intelligence analysis. Because abduction is part of common-sense reasoning, implementations of it can produce reasoning traces that are very human understandable. Automated abductive inferencing can be deployed to augment human reasoning, taking advantage of computation to process large amounts of information, and to bypass limits to human attention and short-term memory. We illustrate the workings of the prototype system by describing an example of its use for small-unit military operations in an urban setting. Knowledge was encoded as it might be captured prior to engagement from a standard military decision making process (MDMP) and analysis of commander's priority intelligence requirements (PIR). The system is able to reasonably estimate the evidence for higher-level hypotheses based on information from multiple sensors. Its inference processes can be examined closely to verify correctness. Decision makers can override conclusions at any level and changes will propagate appropriately.

  2. Why do French civil-law countries have higher levels of financial efficiency?

    OpenAIRE

    Asongu Simplice

    2011-01-01

    The dominance of English common-law countries in prospects for financial development in the legal-origins debate has been debunked by recent findings. Using exchange rate regimes and economic/monetary integration oriented hypotheses, this paper proposes an “inflation uncertainty theory” in providing theoretical justification and empirical validity as to why French civil-law countries have higher levels of financial allocation efficiency. Inflation uncertainty, typical of floating exchange rat...

  3. Do higher levels of education and skills in an area benefit wider society?

    OpenAIRE

    Winters, John V.

    2015-01-01

    Formal schooling increases earnings and provides other individual benefits. However, societal benefits of education may exceed individual benefits. Research finds that increased average education levels in an area are correlated with higher earnings, even for locals with relatively little education. Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) graduates appear to have especially strong external effects, due to their role in stimulating innovation and economic growth. Several strat...

  4. Higher Levels of Albuminuria within the Normal Range Predict Incident Hypertension

    OpenAIRE

    Forman, John P.; Fisher, Naomi D.L.; Schopick, Emily L.; Curhan, Gary C.

    2008-01-01

    Higher levels of albumin excretion within the normal range are associated with cardiovascular disease in high-risk individuals. Whether incremental increases in urinary albumin excretion, even within the normal range, are associated with the development of hypertension in low-risk individuals is unknown. This study included 1065 postmenopausal women from the first Nurses’ Health Study and 1114 premenopausal women from the second Nurses’ Health Study who had an albumin/creatinine ratio

  5. Visual Acuity does not Moderate Effect Sizes of Higher-Level Cognitive Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houston, James R.; Bennett, Ilana J.; Allen, Philip A.; Madden, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Background Declining visual capacities in older adults have been posited as a driving force behind adult age differences in higher-order cognitive functions (e.g., the “common cause” hypothesis of Lindenberger & Baltes, 1994). McGowan, Patterson and Jordan (2013) also found that a surprisingly large number of published cognitive aging studies failed to include adequate measures of visual acuity. However, a recent meta-analysis of three studies (LaFleur & Salthouse, 2014) failed to find evidence that visual acuity moderated or mediated age differences in higher-level cognitive processes. In order to provide a more extensive test of whether visual acuity moderates age differences in higher-level cognitive processes, we conducted a more extensive meta-analysis of topic. Methods Using results from 456 studies, we calculated effect sizes for the main effect of age across four cognitive domains (attention, executive function, memory, and perception/language) separately for five levels of visual acuity criteria (no criteria, undisclosed criteria, self-reported acuity, 20/80-20/31, and 20/30 or better). Results As expected, age had a significant effect on each cognitive domain. However, these age effects did not further differ as a function of visual acuity criteria. Conclusion The current meta-analytic, cross-sectional results suggest that visual acuity is not significantly related to age group differences in higher-level cognitive performance—thereby replicating LaFleur and Salthouse (2014). Further efforts are needed to determine whether other measures of visual functioning (e.g. contrast sensitivity, luminance) affect age differences in cognitive functioning. PMID:27070044

  6. Higher cortisol levels at diurnal trough predict greater attentional bias towards threat in healthy young adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hakamata, Yuko; Izawa, Shuhei; Sato, Eisuke; Komi, Shotaro; Murayama, Norio; Moriguchi, Yoshiya; Hanakawa, Takashi; Inoue, Yusuke; Tagaya, Hirokuni

    2013-11-01

    Attentional bias (AB), selective information processing towards threat, can exacerbate anxiety and depression. Despite growing interest, physiological determinants of AB are yet to be understood. We examined whether stress hormone cortisol and its diurnal variation pattern contribute to AB. Eighty-seven healthy young adults underwent assessments for AB, anxious personality traits, depressive symptoms, and attentional function. Salivary cortisol was collected at three time points daily (at awakening, 30 min after awakening, and bedtime) for 2 consecutive days. We performed: (1) multiple regression analysis to examine the relationships between AB and the other measures and (2) analysis of variance (ANOVA) between groups with different cortisol variation patterns for the other measures. Multiple regression analysis revealed that higher cortisol levels at bedtime (pattention and cortisol measurement at three time points daily. We showed that higher cortisol levels at bedtime and blunted cortisol variation are associated with greater AB. Individuals who have higher cortisol levels at diurnal trough might be at risk of clinical anxiety or depression but could also derive more benefits from the attentional-bias-modification program. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Gender in higher level education and professional training in water supply and sanitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borba, M

    1997-01-01

    While more women are participating in training and decision-making in the local-level drinking water and sanitation sectors, this is not occurring at higher levels because of the gender imbalance that remains in higher-level sector education and professional training programs. This imbalance is characterized by gender-biased science curricula and by a lack of female role models. Even in developing countries where female enrollment outstrips that of men in higher education, women commonly prepare for careers in areas that are less valued than sanitary engineering. This imbalance ignores the fact that women can perform technical and managerial skills as competently as men. A similar male-dominated pattern emerges in professional training courses offered by development agencies, especially courses that focus on management issues. Low female school attendance begins when girls must forego primary school attendance to help their mothers in domestic chores, such as fetching water. Inadequate sanitation facilities for girls at schools also pose impediments. Efforts to improve this situation include 1) a promotional brochure developed by the Botswana Ministry of Education to raise awareness of the importance of men's and women's work as technicians and engineers in the water and sanitation sector among secondary school students; 2) creation of free schools and universities in Oman, where the numbers of women in previously male-dominated jobs are increasing; and 3) promotion of female education at the Asian Institute of Technology.

  8. Digital Immigrants and Digital Natives: Learning Business Informatics at Higher Educational Level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suša Dalia

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: The term digital natives refer to those born since the 1980s and have been growing up surrounded by technology. On the other hand, digital immigrants are born before 1980s and learned how to use technology later in life. Objectives: Goal of the paper is to explore attitudes of digital native students on the course of Business Informatics at higher educational institutions (HEIs, and to compare them with attitudes of digital immigrants. Methods/Approach: The survey was conducted in 2014 using the sample of first-year Business Informatics students from the Faculty of Economics and Business in Zagreb, Croatia. Results were compared with a research conducted in 1998. Results: In comparison to an earlier research, digital natives perceive their level of competency in the subject of Business Informatics before teaching practices much higher compared to digital immigrants. However, there is still an increase in digital native students’ level of competency in the subject before and after teaching practices. Conclusions: The research confirms a shift from digital immigrants to digital natives who show high level of interest for Business Informatics course topics and find its utility very high. However, constant improvement of delivering knowledge is needed in order to keep these high levels.

  9. Network-level accident-mapping: Distance based pattern matching using artificial neural network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deka, Lipika; Quddus, Mohammed

    2014-04-01

    The objective of an accident-mapping algorithm is to snap traffic accidents onto the correct road segments. Assigning accidents onto the correct segments facilitate to robustly carry out some key analyses in accident research including the identification of accident hot-spots, network-level risk mapping and segment-level accident risk modelling. Existing risk mapping algorithms have some severe limitations: (i) they are not easily 'transferable' as the algorithms are specific to given accident datasets; (ii) they do not perform well in all road-network environments such as in areas of dense road network; and (iii) the methods used do not perform well in addressing inaccuracies inherent in and type of road environment. The purpose of this paper is to develop a new accident mapping algorithm based on the common variables observed in most accident databases (e.g. road name and type, direction of vehicle movement before the accident and recorded accident location). The challenges here are to: (i) develop a method that takes into account uncertainties inherent to the recorded traffic accident data and the underlying digital road network data, (ii) accurately determine the type and proportion of inaccuracies, and (iii) develop a robust algorithm that can be adapted for any accident set and road network of varying complexity. In order to overcome these challenges, a distance based pattern-matching approach is used to identify the correct road segment. This is based on vectors containing feature values that are common in the accident data and the network data. Since each feature does not contribute equally towards the identification of the correct road segments, an ANN approach using the single-layer perceptron is used to assist in "learning" the relative importance of each feature in the distance calculation and hence the correct link identification. The performance of the developed algorithm was evaluated based on a reference accident dataset from the UK confirming that

  10. Sample Entropy Analysis of EEG Signals via Artificial Neural Networks to Model Patients’ Consciousness Level Based on Anesthesiologists Experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George J. A. Jiang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Electroencephalogram (EEG signals, as it can express the human brain’s activities and reflect awareness, have been widely used in many research and medical equipment to build a noninvasive monitoring index to the depth of anesthesia (DOA. Bispectral (BIS index monitor is one of the famous and important indicators for anesthesiologists primarily using EEG signals when assessing the DOA. In this study, an attempt is made to build a new indicator using EEG signals to provide a more valuable reference to the DOA for clinical researchers. The EEG signals are collected from patients under anesthetic surgery which are filtered using multivariate empirical mode decomposition (MEMD method and analyzed using sample entropy (SampEn analysis. The calculated signals from SampEn are utilized to train an artificial neural network (ANN model through using expert assessment of consciousness level (EACL which is assessed by experienced anesthesiologists as the target to train, validate, and test the ANN. The results that are achieved using the proposed system are compared to BIS index. The proposed system results show that it is not only having similar characteristic to BIS index but also more close to experienced anesthesiologists which illustrates the consciousness level and reflects the DOA successfully.

  11. Pixel-Level Deep Segmentation: Artificial Intelligence Quantifies Muscle on Computed Tomography for Body Morphometric Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyunkwang; Troschel, Fabian M; Tajmir, Shahein; Fuchs, Georg; Mario, Julia; Fintelmann, Florian J; Do, Synho

    2017-08-01

    Pretreatment risk stratification is key for personalized medicine. While many physicians rely on an "eyeball test" to assess whether patients will tolerate major surgery or chemotherapy, "eyeballing" is inherently subjective and difficult to quantify. The concept of morphometric age derived from cross-sectional imaging has been found to correlate well with outcomes such as length of stay, morbidity, and mortality. However, the determination of the morphometric age is time intensive and requires highly trained experts. In this study, we propose a fully automated deep learning system for the segmentation of skeletal muscle cross-sectional area (CSA) on an axial computed tomography image taken at the third lumbar vertebra. We utilized a fully automated deep segmentation model derived from an extended implementation of a fully convolutional network with weight initialization of an ImageNet pre-trained model, followed by post processing to eliminate intramuscular fat for a more accurate analysis. This experiment was conducted by varying window level (WL), window width (WW), and bit resolutions in order to better understand the effects of the parameters on the model performance. Our best model, fine-tuned on 250 training images and ground truth labels, achieves 0.93 ± 0.02 Dice similarity coefficient (DSC) and 3.68 ± 2.29% difference between predicted and ground truth muscle CSA on 150 held-out test cases. Ultimately, the fully automated segmentation system can be embedded into the clinical environment to accelerate the quantification of muscle and expanded to volume analysis of 3D datasets.

  12. Gender difference of alanine aminotransferase elevation may be associated with higher hemoglobin levels among male adolescents.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Solomon Chih-Cheng Chen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: To explore the gender difference of ALT elevation and its association with high hemoglobin levels. METHODS: A cross-sectional study of 3547 adolescents (2005 females, mean age of 16.5?.3 years who were negative for hepatitis B surface antigen received health checkups in 2006. Body mass index (BMI, levels of hemoglobin, ALT and cholesterol were measured. ALT >42 U/L was defined as elevated ALT. Elevated ALT levels were detected in 112 of the 3547 participants (3.3%, more prevalent in males than in females (5.4% vs. 1.4%, p11 g/dl in females or >13.5 g/dl in males, but the cumulative cases of elevated ALT increased more quickly in males. Proportion of elevated ALT increased as either the BMI or hemoglobin level rise, more apparent in male adolescents. Logistic regression modeling showed odds ratio (95% confidence interval were 24.7 (15.0-40.6 for BMI ≥27 kg/m(2; 5.5 (2.9-10.4 for BMI 24-27 kg/m(2; 2.7 (1.3-5.5 for Q5 (top 20th percentile hemoglobin level; and 2.6 (1.6-4.1 for male gender. Further separately fitting the logistic models for two genders, the significance of Q5 hemoglobin level only appeared in the males. CONCLUSIONS: High hemoglobin level is a significant risk factor of ALT elevation after control hepatitis B, obesity and gender. Males have greater risk of abnormal liver function which may be associated with higher hemoglobin levels.

  13. The present-day level of long-living artificial radionuclides content in mosses, lichens and needles of Siberia areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strakhovenko, V.D.; Sukhorukov, F.V.; Shcherbov, B.L.

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of the paper is to estimate the present-day level of long-living artificial radionuclides activity in lichen-moss cover and needles in the Siberia region. During the expeditionary activities (1995-2004) the Lichen cover mosses and needles were sampled in the Ust'-Ordinsky and Aginsky Buryatsky autonomous regions, Altai area, Republic of Altai, Novosibirsk Region, the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous region. The identical species of lichen, mosses. needles were collected from Siberia (lichens - Cladonia, Evernia, Usnea, Parmeli; mosses - Polytrichum, Hylocomium, Pleurozium, Sphagnum; needles - Pinaceae). It was collected 6 and more lichen species from each of 18 sample sites, more than 3 Moss species from 7 sample sites, and in place of coniferous trees joint growth (a pine, a cedar, a fir, a fur-tree and a larch). The needles were selected from all trees and thus were divided into one-year-old and many-year old. The samples were analyzed in the Laboratory of Trace Elements Geochemistry and Ecogeochemistry of the UIGGM, Novosibirsk, using special sample preparation and analysis techniques. The content of 137 Cs were determined by gamma-spectrometry (analyst Stepin A.S.), 90 Sr by beta-radiometry with a radiochemical sample preparation (analyst Makeover I.V.). The data reported are evidence that a present-day level of radioactive contamination in moss-lichen cover and needles of Siberia areas corresponds to this of global background, expect for northern area of Siberia (YNAD) for which hyperactivity are determined for the each of three components. Radiocesium concentration in one-year old needles reflects a level of atmospheric intake only for accidents, for other cases the condition of current needles reflects basically radionuclide level established as the result of dynamic balance between root intake and annual biogenic abscission of needles. (author)

  14. Effect of Li level, artificial aging, and TiB2 reinforcement on the modulus of Weldalite (tm) 049

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-01-01

    The dynamic Young's Modulus (E) was determined for (1) alloys 049(1.3)(heat 072), (2) 049(1.9), and (3) 049(1.3) TiB2 in the T3 temper and after aging at 160 C were made on a single 0.953 cm (0.375 in) cube to reduce scatter from microstructural inhomogeneities. Both shear and transverse wave velocities were measured for the L, LT, and ST directions by a pulse echo technique. These velocities were then used to calculate modulus. The change is shown in E with aging time at 160 C (320 F) for the three alloys. It is clear from the plots that aging has a minor, but measurable, influence on the E of alloys 049(1.3) and 049(1.9): E decreases by -2.5 pct. for 2 and 3 during the initial stages of artificial aging. This decrease in E generally follows the strength reversion. On further aging beyond the reversion well, E increases and then decreases again as the alloy overage. The slightly higher modulus in the T8 than in the T3 temper is consistent with the presence of the high modulus T sub 1 phase in the T8 temper. A similar change in E was observed on aging for the TiB2 reinforced variant that also follows the aging curve.

  15. Higher levels of circulating chemerin in both lean and obese patients with polycystic ovary syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ademoglu, E; Berberoglu, Z; Carlioglu, A; Dellal, F; Gorar, S; Alphan, Z; Uysal, S; Karakurt, F

    2014-12-01

    The aim of this paper was to compare serum chemerin levels in nonobese and overweight/obese patients with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) with lean controls. Seventy women with newly diagnosed or untreated PCOS and 38 age-matched nonobese healthy controls were enrolled in the present study. Participants with PCOS were categorized as nonobese (Body Mass Index [BMI] PCOS group than in nonobese PCOS women but did not reach statistical significance. Nonobese healthy controls had significantly lower chemerin levels than two PCOS groups (Pwomen with PCOS than in other two groups. Also, these two parameters were higher in lean patients with PCOS than in healthy controls (PPCOS women but also in nonobese PCOS women. The physiological significance of elevated serum chemerin in PCOS remains unclear.

  16. Evaluation of higher order statistics parameters for multi channel sEMG using different force levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naik, Ganesh R; Kumar, Dinesh K

    2011-01-01

    The electromyograpy (EMG) signal provides information about the performance of muscles and nerves. The shape of the muscle signal and motor unit action potential (MUAP) varies due to the movement of the position of the electrode or due to changes in contraction level. This research deals with evaluating the non-Gaussianity in Surface Electromyogram signal (sEMG) using higher order statistics (HOS) parameters. To achieve this, experiments were conducted for four different finger and wrist actions at different levels of Maximum Voluntary Contractions (MVCs). Our experimental analysis shows that at constant force and for non-fatiguing contractions, probability density functions (PDF) of sEMG signals were non-Gaussian. For lesser MVCs (below 30% of MVC) PDF measures tends to be Gaussian process. The above measures were verified by computing the Kurtosis values for different MVCs.

  17. Hijab and Depression: Does the Islamic Practice of Veiling Predict Higher Levels of Depressive Symptoms?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodge, David R; Husain, Altaf; Zidan, Tarek

    2017-07-01

    Hijab or veiling is commonly practiced by Muslim women but remains controversial in the broader secular society. Some Western feminists argue that veiling is an oppressive behavior that negatively affects women by, for example, engendering depression. This article tests this hypothesis with a national sample of American Muslim women (N = 194). The results of the regression analysis did not support the hypothesis. Indeed, women who veiled more frequently reported lower, rather than higher, levels of depressive symptoms. In other words, wearing the hijab appears to be a protective factor in the area of depression. Given the prevalence of depression among women, the results have important implications for practice with Muslim women at both the micro and the macro levels. © 2017 National Association of Social Workers.

  18. Organic foods contain higher levels of certain nutrients, lower levels of pesticides, and may provide health benefits for the consumer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crinnion, Walter J

    2010-04-01

    The multi-billion dollar organic food industry is fueled by consumer perception that organic food is healthier (greater nutritional value and fewer toxic chemicals). Studies of the nutrient content in organic foods vary in results due to differences in the ground cover and maturity of the organic farming operation. Nutrient content also varies from farmer to farmer and year to year. However, reviews of multiple studies show that organic varieties do provide significantly greater levels of vitamin C, iron, magnesium, and phosphorus than non-organic varieties of the same foods. While being higher in these nutrients, they are also significantly lower in nitrates and pesticide residues. In addition, with the exception of wheat, oats, and wine, organic foods typically provide greater levels of a number of important antioxidant phytochemicals (anthocyanins, flavonoids, and carotenoids). Although in vitro studies of organic fruits and vegetables consistently demonstrate that organic foods have greater antioxidant activity, are more potent suppressors of the mutagenic action of toxic compounds, and inhibit the proliferation of certain cancer cell lines, in vivo studies of antioxidant activity in humans have failed to demonstrate additional benefit. Clear health benefits from consuming organic dairy products have been demonstrated in regard to allergic dermatitis.

  19. The antioxidant level of Alaska's wild berries: high, higher and highest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roxie Rodgers Dinstel

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Background . In the last few years, antioxidants have become the stars of the nutritional world. Antioxidants are important in terms of their ability to protect against oxidative cell damage that can lead to conditions, such as Alzheimer's disease, cancer and heart disease – conditions also linked with chronic inflammation. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of Alaska's wild berries may have the potential to help prevent these diseases. Objective . To discover the antioxidant levels of Alaska wild berries and the ways these antioxidant levels translate when preservation methods are applied to the berry. Design . This research centred on both the raw berries and products made from the berries. In the first year, a variety of wild berries were tested to discover their oxygen radical absorption capacity (ORAC in the raw berries. The second level of the research project processed 4 different berries – blueberries, lingonberries, salmonberries, highbush cranberries – into 8 or 9 products made from these berries. The products were tested for both ORAC as well as specific antioxidants. Results . The Alaska wild berries collected and tested in the first experiment ranged from 3 to 5 times higher in ORAC value than cultivated berries from the lower 48 states. For instance, cultivated blueberries have an ORAC scale of 30. Alaska wild dwarf blueberries measure 85. This is also higher than lower 48 wild blueberries, which had a score of 61. All of the Alaskan berries tested have a level of antioxidant considered nutritionally valuable, ranging from 19 for watermelon berries to 206 for lingonberries on the ORAC scale. With the processed products made from 4 Alaska wild berries, one of the unexpected outcomes of the research was that the berries continued to have levels of antioxidants considered high, despite the effects of commonly used heat-processing techniques. When berries were dehydrated, per gram ORAC values increased. Conclusion

  20. Higher Dialysate Matrix Metalloproteinase-2 Levels Are Associated with Peritoneal Membrane Dysfunction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Yeoungjee; Johnson, David W.; Vesey, David A.; Hawley, Carmel M.; Pascoe, Elaine M.; Clarke, Margaret; Topley, Nicholas

    2016-01-01

    ♦ Background: Peritoneal dialysis (PD) patients develop progressive and cumulative peritoneal injury with longer time spent on PD. The present study aimed to a) describe the trend of peritoneal injury biomarkers, matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-1 (TIMP-1), in incident PD patients, b) to explore the capacity of dialysate MMP-2 to predict peritoneal solute transport rate (PSTR) and peritonitis, and c) to evaluate the influence of neutral pH, low glucose degradation product (GDP) PD solution on these outcomes. ♦ Methods: The study included 178 participants from the balANZ trial who had at least 1 stored dialysate sample. Changes in PSTR and peritonitis were primary outcome measures, and the utility of MMP-2 in predicting these outcomes was analyzed using multilevel linear regression and multilevel Poisson regression, respectively. ♦ Results: Significant linear increases in dialysate MMP-2 and TIMP-1 concentrations were observed (p < 0.001), but neither was affected by the type of PD solutions received (MMP-2: p = 0.07; TIMP-1: p = 0.63). An increase in PSTR from baseline was associated with higher levels of MMP-2 (p = 0.02), and the use of standard solutions over longer PD duration (p = 0.001). The risk of peritonitis was independently predicted by higher dialysate MMP-2 levels (incidence rate ratio [IRR] per ng/mL 1.01, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.005 – 1.02, p = 0.002) and use of standard solutions (Biocompatible solution: IRR 0.45, 95% CI 0.24 – 0.85, p = 0.01). ♦ Conclusion: Dialysate MMP-2 and TIMP-1 concentrations increased with longer PD duration. Higher MMP-2 levels were associated with faster PSTR and future peritonitis risk. Administration of biocompatible solutions exerted no significant effect on dialysate levels of MMP-2 or TIMP-1, but did counteract the increase in PSTR and the risk of peritonitis associated with the use of standard PD solutions. This is the first longitudinal study to examine

  1. The Neuromuscular Qualities of Higher- and Lower-Level Mixed-Martial-Arts Competitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, Lachlan P; Beckman, Emma M; Kelly, Vincent G; Haff, G Gregory

    2017-05-01

    To determine whether the maximal strength, impulse, and power characteristics of competitive mixed-martial-arts (MMA) athletes differ according to competition level. Twenty-nine male semiprofessional and amateur MMA competitors were stratified into either higher-level (HL) or lower-level (LL) performers on the basis of competition grade and success. The 1-repetition-maximum (1RM) squat was used to assess lower-body dynamic strength, and a spectrum of impulse, power, force, and velocity variables were evaluated during an incremental-load jump squat. In addition, participants performed an isometric midthigh pull (IMTP) and 1RM bench press to determine whole-body isometric force and upper-body dynamic strength capabilities, respectively. All force and power variables were expressed relative to body mass (BM). The HL competitors produced significantly superior values across a multitude of measures. These included 1RM squat strength (1.84 ± 0.23 vs 1.56 ± 0.24 kg BM; P = .003), in addition to performance in the incremental-load jump squat that revealed greater peak power (P = .005-.002), force (P = .002-.004), and velocity (P = .002-.03) at each load. Higher measures of impulse (P = .01-.04) were noted in a number of conditions. Average power (P = .002-.02) and velocity (P = .01-.04) at all loads in addition to a series of rate-dependent measures were also superior in the HL group (P = .005-.02). The HL competitors' 1RM bench-press values approached significantly greater levels (P = .056) than the LL group's, but IMTP performance did not differ between groups. Maximal lower-body neuromuscular capabilities are key attributes distinguishing HL from LL MMA competitors. This information can be used to inform evidenced-based training and performance-monitoring practices.

  2. Higher Alu methylation levels in catch-up growth in twenty-year-old offsprings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kittipan Rerkasem

    Full Text Available Alu elements and long interspersed element-1 (LINE-1 or L1 are two major human intersperse repetitive sequences. Lower Alu methylation, but not LINE-1, has been observed in blood cells of people in old age, and in menopausal women having lower bone mass and osteoporosis. Nevertheless, Alu methylation levels also vary among young individuals. Here, we explored phenotypes at birth that are associated with Alu methylation levels in young people. In 2010, 249 twenty-years-old volunteers whose mothers had participated in a study association between birth weight (BW and nutrition during pregnancy in 1990, were invited to take part in our present study. In this study, the LINE-1 and Alu methylation levels and patterns were measured in peripheral mononuclear cells and correlated with various nutritional parameters during intrauterine and postnatal period of offspring. This included the amount of maternal intake during pregnancy, the mother's weight gain during pregnancy, birth weight, birth length, and the rate of weight gain in the first year of life. Catch-up growth (CUG was defined when weight during the first year was >0.67 of the standard score, according to WHO data. No association with LINE-1 methylation was identified. The mean level of Alu methylation in the CUG group was significantly higher than those non-CUG (39.61% and 33.66 % respectively, P < 0.0001. The positive correlation between the history of CUG in the first year and higher Alu methylation indicates the role of Alu methylation, not only in aging cells, but also in the human growth process. Moreover, here is the first study that demonstrated the association between a phenotype during the newborn period and intersperse repetitive sequences methylation during young adulthood.

  3. Lower serotonin level and higher rate of fibromyalgia syndrome with advancing pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atasever, Melahat; Namlı Kalem, Muberra; Sönmez, Çiğdem; Seval, Mehmet Murat; Yüce, Tuncay; Sahin Aker, Seda; Koç, Acar; Genc, Hakan

    2017-09-01

    The aim of the study is to investigate the relationship between changes in serotonin levels during pregnancy and fibromyalgia syndrome (FS) and the relationships between FS and the physical/psychological state, biochemical and hormonal parameters, which may be related to the musculoskeletal system. This study is a prospective case-control study conducted with 277 pregnant women at the obstetric unit of Ankara University Faculty of Medicine, in the period between January and June 2015. FS was determined based on the presence or absence of the 2010 ACR diagnostic criteria and all the volunteers were asked to answer the questionnaires as Fibromyalgia Impact Criteria (FIQ), Widespread Pain Index (WPI), Symptom Severity Scale (SS), Beck Depression Inventory and Visual Analog Scale (VAS). Biochemical and hormonal markers (glucose, TSH, T4, Ca (calcium), P (phosphate), PTH (parathyroid hormone) and serotonin levels) relating to muscle and bone metabolism were measured. In the presence of fibromyalgia, the physical and psychological parameters are negatively affected (p serotonin levels may contribute to the development of fibromyalgia but this was not statistically significant. The Beck Depression Inventory scale statistically showed that increasing scores also increase the risk of fibromyalgia (p serotonin levels in women with FS are lower than the control group and that serotonin levels reduce as pregnancy progresses. Anxiety and depression in pregnant women with FS are higher than the control group. The presence of depression increases the likelihood of developing FS at a statistically significant level. Serotonin impairment also increases the chance of developing FS, but this correlation has not been shown to be statistically significant.

  4. Evaluation of environmental education at higher secondary level in the model schools of Islamabad

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tahir, F.; Ahmad, U.

    2000-01-01

    Environmental education (EE) has emerged as a new dimension in the dimensional sphere. It is a process aimed at the developing world's population, which should be well aware and concerned about the total environment and its associated problems and which should have knowledge, attitudes, skills, motivation and commitment to work, individually and collectively, towards the solution of current problems and the prevention of new ones. Evaluation is a process that provides feedback for the improvement of any project. The present study has been designed to investigate the current performance of EE at higher secondary level. Data were collected from Biology teachers and F. Sc. students of Islamabad Model Colleges, through separate questionnaires. The information collected from teachers was regarding their qualifications and involvement, institutional provisions and their opinion about EE. Students were evaluated on the basis of EE. The results showed that Biology is the only subject that contains a considerable content of EE at higher secondary level. In these institutions, although there is no deficiency of competent teaching staff, A/V aids and other physical facilities , the teacher's involvement and utility of teaching aids is not up to the mark, Book/magazines relevant to EE are not available in most of the institutions. Although students have enough knowledge and awareness about environmental issues, there is a need to produce appropriate skills and attitudes for making them 'environment-friendly'. (author)

  5. Management competencies in higher education: Perceived job importance in relation to level of training required

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingrid L. Potgieter

    2010-11-01

    Research purpose: The aim of this article is to determine the relationship between a specific set of HOD managerial competencies identified as being important for the job and the level of training required in terms of these competencies. Motivation for the study: Research has provided evidence that HODs are often ill-prepared for their managerial role, which requires the development of specific management competencies to enable them to fulfil their roles effectively. Research design, approach and method: A non-experimental quantitative survey design approach was followed and correlational data analyses were performed. A cross-sectional sample of 41 HODs of 22 departments from various faculties of a higher education institution in Gauteng participated in this study. The Management Competency Inventory (MCI of Visser (2009 was applied as a measure. Main findings: The Pearson product-moment analysis indicated that there is a significant relationship between the competencies indicated as being important for the job and the level of training required. Practical/Managerial implications: Training needs of HODs should be formally assessed and the depth of training required in terms of the identified management competencies should be considered in the design of training programmes. Contributions/Value-add: The information obtained in this study may potentially serve as a foundation for the development of an HOD training programme in the South African higher education environment.

  6. Stress Coping Levels and Mental States of Police Vocational School of Higher Education Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arzu Yildirim

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available SUMMARY AIM: This study was planned and carried out with the objective of determining stress coping levels and mental state of students attending Police Vocational Schools of Higher Education, in addition to factors effecting these. MATERIAL and METHOD: This desciptive and cross-sectional study consisted of 300 male students enrolled in the 2005-2006 academic year, at Police Vocational School of Higher Education, located in central Erzincan, Turkey. In this study, instead of random sampling, 281 (93.7% students who were present at the school at the time of the study and accepted to partipate in it were included. Data for this study was collected using a desciptive form created by the researchers, Rosenbaum’s Learned Resourcefulness Scale (RLRS and The Symptom Check List-90-R (SCL-90-R. During the data analysis, frequency distributions, Mann-Whitney U, Kruskal-Wallis and analysis of variance (one-way ANOVA were used; and for analysis of independent groups, t-test was used. RESULTS: Among the students, it was determined that 54.8% were 1. grade, 90.7% had their parents living together, 43.5% had a father and 60.5% had a mother who graduated from elementary school, fathers of 23.5% of students were retired, 93.6% of them had mothers who were home makers. In addition, it was found out that 78.6% of students chose their profession willingly, the average family income of 71.5% of students were at medium levels, 82.9% always believed in themselves and 63.3% of students did not smoke. Based on the results obtained, it was observed that second grade students, those with mothers who are highly educated and those who trusted themselved all the time had significantly high stress coping levels; students who chose their own profession, believed in themselves and did not smoke had significantly low levels of mental symptom indications. CONCLUSION: In this study, the students were determined to posess averge levels of stress coping skills and they were found

  7. Lower prevalence but similar fitness in a parasitic fungus at higher radiation levels near Chernobyl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguileta, Gabriela; Badouin, Helene; Hood, Michael E; Møller, Anders P; Le Prieur, Stephanie; Snirc, Alodie; Siguenza, Sophie; Mousseau, Timothy A; Shykoff, Jacqui A; Cuomo, Christina A; Giraud, Tatiana

    2016-07-01

    Nuclear disasters at Chernobyl and Fukushima provide examples of effects of acute ionizing radiation on mutations that can affect the fitness and distribution of species. Here, we investigated the prevalence of Microbotryum lychnidis-dioicae, a pollinator-transmitted fungal pathogen of plants causing anther-smut disease in Chernobyl, its viability, fertility and karyotype variation, and the accumulation of nonsynonymous mutations in its genome. We collected diseased flowers of Silene latifolia from locations ranging by more than two orders of magnitude in background radiation, from 0.05 to 21.03 μGy/h. Disease prevalence decreased significantly with increasing radiation level, possibly due to lower pollinator abundance and altered pollinator behaviour. Viability and fertility, measured as the budding rate of haploid sporidia following meiosis from the diploid teliospores, did not vary with increasing radiation levels and neither did karyotype overall structure and level of chromosomal size heterozygosity. We sequenced the genomes of twelve samples from Chernobyl and of four samples collected from uncontaminated areas and analysed alignments of 6068 predicted genes, corresponding to 1.04 × 10(7)  base pairs. We found no dose-dependent differences in substitution rates (neither dN, dS, nor dN/dS). Thus, we found no significant evidence of increased deleterious mutation rates at higher levels of background radiation in this plant pathogen. We even found lower levels of nonsynonymous substitution rates in contaminated areas compared to control regions, suggesting that purifying selection was stronger in contaminated than uncontaminated areas. We briefly discuss the possibilities for a mechanistic basis of radio resistance in this nonmelanized fungus. © 2016 The Authors. Molecular Ecology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Hunt, Earl B

    1975-01-01

    Artificial Intelligence provides information pertinent to the fundamental aspects of artificial intelligence. This book presents the basic mathematical and computational approaches to problems in the artificial intelligence field.Organized into four parts encompassing 16 chapters, this book begins with an overview of the various fields of artificial intelligence. This text then attempts to connect artificial intelligence problems to some of the notions of computability and abstract computing devices. Other chapters consider the general notion of computability, with focus on the interaction bet

  9. Noosphere: Does the Internet Provide an Evolutionary Leap to a Higher Level of Collective Intelligence?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatjana Milivojević

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The neologism noosphere signifies global human consciousness. According to T. de Chardin, it is the third stage in the development of the earth, after the geosphere and the biosphere. As well as the emergence of life has fundamentally changed the geosphere, the emergence of human consciousness has fundamentally changed the biosphere. De Chardin envisioned the “planetarization” of mankind, which is equivalent to the current globalization by information technology. From an anthropological point of view, internet is not a technology or media as others: it has the potential to revolutionize the current civilizational paradigm. With the advent of the internet the idea of the noosphere has been reactualized and related to the concept of collective intelligence. The article questions the hypothesis of an evolutionary leap in a greater collective intelligence or higher level of collective consciousness presenting pros and cons.

  10. Leveraging People-Related Maturity Issues for Achieving Higher Maturity and Capability Levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buglione, Luigi

    During the past 20 years Maturity Models (MM) become a buzzword in the ICT world. Since the initial Crosby's idea in 1979, plenty of models have been created in the Software & Systems Engineering domains, addressing various perspectives. By analyzing the content of the Process Reference Models (PRM) in many of them, it can be noticed that people-related issues have little weight in the appraisals of the capabilities of organizations while in practice they are considered as significant contributors in traditional process and organizational performance appraisals, as stressed instead in well-known Performance Management models such as MBQA, EFQM and BSC. This paper proposes some ways for leveraging people-related maturity issues merging HR practices from several types of maturity models into the organizational Business Process Model (BPM) in order to achieve higher organizational maturity and capability levels.

  11. Fusion methodologies in crisis management higher level fusion and decision making

    CERN Document Server

    Scott, Peter

    2016-01-01

    This book emphasizes a contemporary view on the role of higher level fusion in designing crisis management systems. It provides the formal foundations, architecture, and implementation strategies required for building dynamic current and future situational pictures. It goes on to discuss the state-of-the-art computational approaches to designing such processes and their inherent challenges. This book integrates recent advances in decision theory with those in fusion methodology to define an end-to-end framework for decision support in crisis management. The text discusses modern fusion and decision support methods for dealing with heterogeneous and often unreliable, low fidelity, contradictory, and redundant data and information, as well as rare, unknown, unconventional or even unimaginable critical situations. The book also examines the role of context in situation management, cognitive aspects of decision making and situation management, approaches to domain representation, visualization, as well as the rol...

  12. Level of physical activity, cardiorespiratory fitness and nutritional status of higher education institution servers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo Vidal Andreato

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Objective: to evaluate the level of physical activity, cardiorespiratory fitness and nutritional status of Brazilian higher education institution servers. Method: 134 public servants (80 men and 54 women were evaluated to estimate body mass index (BMI, waist circumference (WC, waist/hip ratio (WHR, aerobic fitness and blood pressure at rest. Results: most of the servers were classified as insufficiently active (62%. BMI results show a high prevalence of obesity (39% mild and 33% moderate. WC showed a prevalence of high (30% and very high risk (27%, and WHR showed a prevalence of high (28% or very high risk (12%. The ergometric test showed that 41% of the servers presented very poor (17% or poor (24% aerobic fitness and 23%, regular aerobic fitness. Considering blood pressure, 15% of the servers presented blood pressure considered as borderline and 30% considered as hypertension. No associations were found between physical condition (active or inactive with WC (χ2 = 3.4, p = 0.179, WHR (χ2 = 7.0, p = 0.073, aerobic fitness (χ2 = 4.3, p = 0.368 and blood pressure (χ2 = 2.9, p = 0.734. Although no association was observed between physical activity and BMI (χ2 = 7.6, p = 0.062, significance values (p < 0.07 suggested an association trend, with worse ratings for the sedentary group. Closing remarks: among higher education institution servers, there is high prevalence of physical inactivity, obesity and risk factors, and the majority of the sample had aerobic fitness below recommended levels.

  13. Coastal climate is associated with elevated solar irradiance and higher 25(OH)D level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherrie, M P C; Wheeler, B W; White, M P; Sarran, C E; Osborne, N J

    2015-04-01

    There is evidence that populations living close to the coast have improved health and wellbeing. Coastal environments are linked to promotion of physical activity through provision of safe, opportune, aesthetic and accessible spaces for recreation. Exposure to coastal environments may also reduce stress and induce positive mood. We hypothesised that coastal climate may influence the vitamin D status of residents and thus partly explain benefits to health. Ecological and cross-sectional analyses were designed to elucidate the connection between coastal residence and vitamin D status. We divided residential data, from developed land use areas and the Lower Super Output Areas or Data Zones (Scotland) of the 1958 Birth Cohort participants, into the following coastal bands: 50 km. This relationship was modified by latitude with settlements at a lower latitude exhibiting a greater effect. Individuals living closer to the coast in England had higher vitamin D levels than those inland, particularly in autumn. Geographic location may influence biochemistry and health outcomes due to environmental factors. This can provide benefits in terms of vitamin D status but may also pose a risk due to higher skin cancer risk. We provide further evidence in support of the claim that coastal environments can provide opportunities for health and wellbeing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Plant species richness sustains higher trophic levels of soil nematode communities after consecutive environmental perturbations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cesarz, Simone; Ciobanu, Marcel; Wright, Alexandra J; Ebeling, Anne; Vogel, Anja; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2017-07-01

    The magnitude and frequency of extreme weather events are predicted to increase in the future due to ongoing climate change. In particular, floods and droughts resulting from climate change are thought to alter the ecosystem functions and stability. However, knowledge of the effects of these weather events on soil fauna is scarce, although they are key towards functioning of terrestrial ecosystems. Plant species richness has been shown to affect the stability of ecosystem functions and food webs. Here, we used the occurrence of a natural flood in a biodiversity grassland experiment that was followed by a simulated summer drought experiment, to investigate the interactive effects of plant species richness, a natural flood, and a subsequent summer drought on nematode communities. Three and five months after the natural flooding, effects of flooding severity were still detectable in the belowground system. We found that flooding severity decreased soil nematode food-web structure (loss of K-strategists) and the abundance of plant feeding nematodes. However, high plant species richness maintained higher diversity and abundance of higher trophic levels compared to monocultures throughout the flood. The subsequent summer drought seemed to be of lower importance but reversed negative flooding effects in some cases. This probably occurred because the studied grassland system is well adapted to drought, or because drought conditions alleviated the negative impact of long-term soil waterlogging. Using soil nematodes as indicator taxa, this study suggests that high plant species richness can maintain soil food web complexity after consecutive environmental perturbations.

  15. A higher level language data acquisition system (III) - the user data acquisition program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Finn, J.M.; Gulbranson, R.L.; Huang, T.L.

    1983-01-01

    The nuclear physics group at the University of Illinois has implemented a data acquisition system using modified versions of the Concurrent Pascal and Sequential Pascal languages. The user, a physicist, develops a data acquisition ''operating system'', written in these higher level languages, which is tailored to the planned experiment. The user must include only those system functions which are essential to the task, thus improving efficiency. The user program is constructed from simple modules, mainly consisting of Concurrent Pascal PROCESSes, MONITORs, and CLASSes together with appropriate data type definitions. Entire programs can be put together using ''cut and paste'' techniques. Planned enhancements include the automating of this process. Systems written for the Perkin-Elmer 3220 using this approach can easily exceed 2 kHz data rates for event by event handling; 20 kHz data rates have been achieved by the addition of buffers in the interrupt handling software. These rates have been achieved without the use of special-purpose hardware such as micro-programmed branch drivers. With the addition of such devices even higher data rates should be possible

  16. Coping with Higher Sea Levels and Increased Coastal Flooding in New York City. Chapter 13

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gornitz, Vivien; Horton, Radley; Bader, Daniel A.; Orton, Philip; Rosenzweig, Cynthia

    2017-01-01

    The 837 km New York City shoreline is lined by significant economic assets and dense population vulnerable to sea level rise and coastal flooding. After Hurricane Sandy in 2012, New York City developed a comprehensive plan to mitigate future climate risks, drawing upon the scientific expertise of the New York City Panel on Climate Change (NPCC), a special advisory group comprised of university and private-sector experts. This paper highlights current NPCC findings regarding sea level rise and coastal flooding, with some of the City's ongoing and planned responses. Twentieth century sea level rise in New York City (2.8 cm/decade) exceeded the global average (1.7 cm/decade), underscoring the enhanced regional risk to coastal hazards. NPCC (2015) projects future sea level rise at the Battery of 28 - 53 cm by the 2050s and 46 - 99 cm by the 2080s, relative to 2000 - 2004 (mid-range, 25th - 75th percentile). High-end SLR estimates (90th percentile) reach 76 cm by the 2050s, and 1.9 m by 2100. Combining these projections with updated FEMA flood return period curves, assuming static flood dynamics and storm behavior, flood heights for the 100-year storm (excluding waves) attain 3.9-4.5 m (mid-range), relative to the NAVD88 tidal datum, and 4.9 m (high end) by the 2080s, up from 3.4 m in the 2000s. Flood heights with a 1% annual chance of occurrence in the 2000s increase to 2.0 - 5.4% (mid-range) and 12.7% per year (high-end), by the 2080s. Guided by NPCC (2013, 2015) findings, New York City has embarked on a suite of initiatives to strengthen coastal defenses, employing various approaches tailored to specific neighborhood needs. NPCC continues its collaboration with the city to investigate vulnerability to extreme climate events, including heat waves, inland floods and coastal storms. Current research entails higher-resolution neighborhood-level coastal flood mapping, changes in storm characteristics, surge height interactions with sea level rise, and stronger engagement

  17. Does foreign direct investment cause higher levels of productivity or do higher levels of productivity attract foreign direct investment? A study in transforming brazilian industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nádia Campos Pereira

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/2175-8077.2013v15n35p82   With this research, it was aimed to investigate the factors that determine the investment decision of foreign investors in the Brazilian industry. Evidence shows that foreign investors are attracted not only by more productive and best performing sectors, but depending on the adopted strategy, they may choose investment projects in sectors that have lower performance levels which offer the potential for growth and the and improvement of efficiency levels and capacity. Granger causality test indicated that not only foreign investment gives more productivity gains, but also this productivity induces more foreign investment inputs. Foreign investors are also attracted by those sectors, which use their assets in an inefficient way in order to generate profits. These sectors may be attractive to foreign investors that want to invest in a more aggressive growth policy in order to get advantages on the availability of inefficiently used assets. These sectors may be also attractive targets to investors who seek to compete directly in relatively less competitive sectors.

  18. Overgeneral autobiographical memory predicts higher prospective levels of depressive symptoms and intrusions in borderline patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van den Broeck, Kris; Pieters, Guido; Claes, Laurence; Berens, Ann; Raes, Filip

    2016-11-01

    Overgeneral memory (OGM), the tendency to retrieve categories of events from autobiographical memory instead of single events, is found to be a reliable predictor for future mood disturbances and post-traumatic symptom severity. Patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) often report co-morbid episodes of major depressive disorder (MDD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Therefore, we investigated whether OGM would predict depression severity and (post-traumatic) stress symptoms in BPD patients. At admission (N = 54) and at six-month follow-up (N ≥ 31), BPD patients completed the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Disorders, the Assessment of DSM-IV Personality Disorders, the Autobiographical Memory Test, the Beck Depression Inventory-2nd edition (BDI-II), and the Impact of Event Scale. OGM at baseline predicted (a) higher levels of depressive symptoms at follow-up and (b) more intrusions related to a stressful event over and above baseline levels of borderline symptoms, depressive symptoms, and intrusions, respectively. No association was found between memory specificity and event-related avoidance at follow-up. Despite previous findings suggesting that OGM in BPD is less robust than in MDD and PTSD, our results suggest that memory specificity in BPD patients may have some relevance for the course of depressive and stress symptomatology in BPD.

  19. Why is mean sea level along the Indian coast higher in the Bay of Bengal than in the Arabian Sea?

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Shankar, D.; Shetye, S.R.

    Levelling observations conducted during the Great Trigonometrical Survey of India (1858-1909) and subsequent observations showed that mean sea level along the coast of India is higher in the Bay of Bengal than in the Arabian Sea, the difference...

  20. Higher levels of albuminuria within the normal range predict incident hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forman, John P; Fisher, Naomi D L; Schopick, Emily L; Curhan, Gary C

    2008-10-01

    Higher levels of albumin excretion within the normal range are associated with cardiovascular disease in high-risk individuals. Whether incremental increases in urinary albumin excretion, even within the normal range, are associated with the development of hypertension in low-risk individuals is unknown. This study included 1065 postmenopausal women from the first Nurses' Health Study and 1114 premenopausal women from the second Nurses' Health Study who had an albumin/creatinine ratio who did not have diabetes or hypertension. Among the older women, 271 incident cases of hypertension occurred during 4 yr of follow-up, and among the younger women, 296 incident cases of hypertension occurred during 8 yr of follow-up. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to examine prospectively the association between the albumin/creatinine ratio and incident hypertension after adjustment for age, body mass index, estimated GFR, baseline BP, physical activity, smoking, and family history of hypertension. Participants who had an albumin/creatinine ratio in the highest quartile (4.34 to 24.17 mg/g for older women and 3.68 to 23.84 mg/g for younger women) were more likely to develop hypertension than those who had an albumin/creatinine ratio in the lowest quartile (hazard ratio 1.76 [95% confidence interval 1.21 to 2.56] and hazard ratio 1.35 [95% confidence interval 0.97 to 1.91] for older and younger women, respectively). Higher albumin/creatinine ratios, even within the normal range, are independently associated with increased risk for development of hypertension among women without diabetes. The definition of normal albumin excretion should be reevaluated.

  1. Process-oriented guided inquiry learning strategy enhances students' higher level thinking skills in a pharmaceutical sciences course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soltis, Robert; Verlinden, Nathan; Kruger, Nicholas; Carroll, Ailey; Trumbo, Tiffany

    2015-02-17

    To determine if the process-oriented guided inquiry learning (POGIL) teaching strategy improves student performance and engages higher-level thinking skills of first-year pharmacy students in an Introduction to Pharmaceutical Sciences course. Overall examination scores and scores on questions categorized as requiring either higher-level or lower-level thinking skills were compared in the same course taught over 3 years using traditional lecture methods vs the POGIL strategy. Student perceptions of the latter teaching strategy were also evaluated. Overall mean examination scores increased significantly when POGIL was implemented. Performance on questions requiring higher-level thinking skills was significantly higher, whereas performance on questions requiring lower-level thinking skills was unchanged when the POGIL strategy was used. Student feedback on use of this teaching strategy was positive. The use of the POGIL strategy increased student overall performance on examinations, improved higher-level thinking skills, and provided an interactive class setting.

  2. Higher Bilirubin Levels of Healthy Living Liver Donors Are Associated With Lower Posttransplant Hepatocellular Carcinoma Recurrence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Sangbin; Yang, Ju Dong; Sinn, Dong Hyun; Ko, Justin Sangwook; Kim, Jong Man; Shin, Jun Chul; Son, Hee Jeong; Gwak, Mi Sook; Joh, Jae-Won; Kim, Gaab Soo

    2016-09-01

    Serum bilirubin level, which may reflect the host defense against increased oxidative stress, is inversely associated with the risk of cancer development. In liver transplantation, the intrinsic bilirubin metabolism of donor liver is subsequently translated into recipient. Thus, we hypothesized that liver transplantation conducted with living donors with higher serum bilirubin reduces hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) recurrence. Two hundred fifty recipients who underwent liver transplantation for treating HCC within the Milan criteria were included in the study. The association between donor preoperative total bilirubin concentration and the risk of HCC recurrence was analyzed using the Fine and Gray regression model with posttransplant death as a competing risk event with adjustment for tumor biology including α-fetoprotein, histological differentiation, and microvascular invasion. All donors were confirmed to have no underlying hepatobiliary diseases or hematological disorders. Donor preoperative total bilirubin concentration was 0.7 mg/dL in median and ranged from 0.2 to 2.7 mg/dL. Thirty-five (14.0%) recipients developed HCC recurrence. Multivariable analysis demonstrated that donor preoperative total bilirubin concentration was inversely associated with the recurrence risk (hazard ratio, 0.22; 95% confidence interval, 0.07-0.72; P = 0.013). The highest (≥1.0 mg/dL) versus lowest (≤0.6 mg/dL) tertile of donor preoperative total bilirubin showed a significant reduction of the recurrence risk (hazard ratio, 0.28; 95% confidence interval, 0.11-0.70; P = 0.006). Hepatocellular carcinoma recurrence risk decreases in relation to the increase in total serum bilirubin level of healthy living donors without underlying hepatobiliary or hematological disorders. Further validation of bilirubin as a potent anticancer substance against HCC is warranted.

  3. The Fulfilment Level of Turkic Republics Higher Education Students' Academic and Social Expectations in Turkey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirgül ENTERİEVA

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study is to determine the fulfilment level of students who come from Turkic Republics to study in Turkey, regarding their academic and social expectations. The qualita-tive research technique and phenomenological design were used in the study. Data of this research was collected via a semistructured interview form consisting 11 openended questions and probes, which were developed by the researchers. A total of 39 undergraduate and postgraduate students from Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan participated in the present study. This study indicated that, while expecting satisfactory accommodation the students also anticipated having quality education enabling them for better employment opportunities upon graduation. Some of the students thought that graduate studies in Turkey would be a bridge to Europe. However, it has been found out that students have several academical, social and educational support service problems. According to findings it can be recommended to improve internationalization in higher education, student-centered environment and current educational and training content, organization of orientation programs, submission of international student office and guidance and consultancy services and enhancing the education support services and dormitory facilities.

  4. The Relationship Between Higher Education Students’ Consumption Values and Levels of Their Satisfaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Necati CEMALOĞLU

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study is to determine the relationships between the as consumers of education of higher education students’ consumption values and levels of their satisfaction. The population of this study is consist of 421 students who are studying at Akdeniz University, Faculty of Science, Biology in the academic year 2012-2013. Sample of this study is 156 students who selected by simple random sampling method. Descriptive statistics, Pearson-Product Moment correlation coefficient and multiple regression analysis were performed to analyze the data. According to the results of study, that students have consumption values in dimension of conditional value, functional value-the image and functional value-the experiential; relatively they have low consumptions values in dimension of functional value-the usefulness of a degree, epistemic value, social value have emerged. Besides the students’ are partly satisfied services offered by university; a positive and significant relationship between students’ perceptions of consumer value and satisfaction was found out

  5. Higher levels of multiple paternities increase seedling survival in the long-lived tree Eucalyptus gracilis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin F Breed

    Full Text Available Studying associations between mating system parameters and fitness in natural populations of trees advances our understanding of how local environments affect seed quality, and thereby helps to predict when inbreeding or multiple paternities should impact on fitness. Indeed, for species that demonstrate inbreeding avoidance, multiple paternities (i.e. the number of male parents per half-sib family should still vary and regulate fitness more than inbreeding--named here as the 'constrained inbreeding hypothesis'. We test this hypothesis in Eucalyptus gracilis, a predominantly insect-pollinated tree. Fifty-eight open-pollinated progeny arrays were collected from trees in three populations. Progeny were planted in a reciprocal transplant trial. Fitness was measured by family establishment rates. We genotyped all trees and their progeny at eight microsatellite loci. Planting site had a strong effect on fitness, but seed provenance and seed provenance × planting site did not. Populations had comparable mating system parameters and were generally outcrossed, experienced low biparental inbreeding and high levels of multiple paternity. As predicted, seed families that had more multiple paternities also had higher fitness, and no fitness-inbreeding correlations were detected. Demonstrating that fitness was most affected by multiple paternities rather than inbreeding, we provide evidence supporting the constrained inbreeding hypothesis; i.e. that multiple paternity may impact on fitness over and above that of inbreeding, particularly for preferentially outcrossing trees at life stages beyond seed development.

  6. Multiple-Choice Exams: An Obstacle for Higher-Level Thinking in Introductory Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanger-Hall, Kathrin F.

    2012-01-01

    Learning science requires higher-level (critical) thinking skills that need to be practiced in science classes. This study tested the effect of exam format on critical-thinking skills. Multiple-choice (MC) testing is common in introductory science courses, and students in these classes tend to associate memorization with MC questions and may not see the need to modify their study strategies for critical thinking, because the MC exam format has not changed. To test the effect of exam format, I used two sections of an introductory biology class. One section was assessed with exams in the traditional MC format, the other section was assessed with both MC and constructed-response (CR) questions. The mixed exam format was correlated with significantly more cognitively active study behaviors and a significantly better performance on the cumulative final exam (after accounting for grade point average and gender). There was also less gender-bias in the CR answers. This suggests that the MC-only exam format indeed hinders critical thinking in introductory science classes. Introducing CR questions encouraged students to learn more and to be better critical thinkers and reduced gender bias. However, student resistance increased as students adjusted their perceptions of their own critical-thinking abilities. PMID:22949426

  7. Higher levels of spontaneous breathing reduce lung injury in experimental moderate acute respiratory distress syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Nadja C; Güldner, Andreas; Beda, Alessandro; Rentzsch, Ines; Uhlig, Christopher; Dittrich, Susanne; Spieth, Peter M; Wiedemann, Bärbel; Kasper, Michael; Koch, Thea; Richter, Torsten; Rocco, Patricia R; Pelosi, Paolo; de Abreu, Marcelo Gama

    2014-11-01

    pressure/airway pressure release ventilation more than 60%. In this model of moderate acute respiratory distress syndrome in pigs, biphasic positive airway pressure/airway pressure release ventilation with levels of spontaneous breath higher than usually seen in clinical practice, that is, more than 30% of total minute ventilation, reduced lung injury with improved respiratory function, as compared with protective controlled mechanical ventilation.

  8. Intracochlear Position of Cochlear Implants Determined Using CT Scanning versus Fitting Levels: Higher Threshold Levels at Basal Turn.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Beek, Feddo B; Briaire, Jeroen J; van der Marel, Kim S; Verbist, Berit M; Frijns, Johan H M

    2016-01-01

    In this study, the effects of the intracochlear position of cochlear implants on the clinical fitting levels were analyzed. A total of 130 adult subjects who used a CII/HiRes 90K cochlear implant with a HiFocus 1/1J electrode were included in the study. The insertion angle and the distance to the modiolus of each electrode contact were determined using high-resolution CT scanning. The threshold levels (T-levels) and maximum comfort levels (M-levels) at 1 year of follow-up were determined. The degree of speech perception of the subjects was evaluated during routine clinical follow-up. The depths of insertion of all the electrode contacts were determined. The distance to the modiolus was significantly smaller at the basal and apical cochlear parts compared with that at the middle of the cochlea (p basal end of the cochlea (3.4 dB). Additionally, the M-levels, which were fitted in our clinic using a standard profile, also increased toward the basal end, although with a lower amplitude (1.3 dB). Accordingly, the dynamic range decreased toward the basal end (2.1 dB). No correlation was found between the distance to the modiolus and the T-level or the M-level. Furthermore, the correlation between the insertion depth and stimulation levels was not affected by the duration of deafness, age at implantation or the time since implantation. Additionally, the T-levels showed a significant correlation with the speech perception scores (p stimulation levels of the cochlear implants were affected by the intracochlear position of the electrode contacts, which were determined using postoperative CT scanning. Interestingly, these levels depended on the insertion depth, whereas the distance to the modiolus did not affect the stimulation levels. The T-levels increased toward the basal end of the cochlea. The level profiles were independent of the overall stimulation levels and were not affected by the biographical data of the patients, such as the duration of deafness, age at

  9. Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Information Technology Quarterly, 1985

    1985-01-01

    This issue of "Information Technology Quarterly" is devoted to the theme of "Artificial Intelligence." It contains two major articles: (1) Artificial Intelligence and Law" (D. Peter O'Neill and George D. Wood); (2) "Artificial Intelligence: A Long and Winding Road" (John J. Simon, Jr.). In addition, it contains two sidebars: (1) "Calculating and…

  10. Higher measured than modeled ozone production at increased NOx levels in the Colorado Front Range

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. C. Baier

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Chemical models must correctly calculate the ozone formation rate, P(O3, to accurately predict ozone levels and to test mitigation strategies. However, air quality models can have large uncertainties in P(O3 calculations, which can create uncertainties in ozone forecasts, especially during the summertime when P(O3 is high. One way to test mechanisms is to compare modeled P(O3 to direct measurements. During summer 2014, the Measurement of Ozone Production Sensor (MOPS directly measured net P(O3 in Golden, CO, approximately 25 km west of Denver along the Colorado Front Range. Net P(O3 was compared to rates calculated by a photochemical box model that was constrained by measurements of other chemical species and that used a lumped chemical mechanism and a more explicit one. Median observed P(O3 was up to a factor of 2 higher than that modeled during early morning hours when nitric oxide (NO levels were high and was similar to modeled P(O3 for the rest of the day. While all interferences and offsets in this new method are not fully understood, simulations of these possible uncertainties cannot explain the observed P(O3 behavior. Modeled and measured P(O3 and peroxy radical (HO2 and RO2 discrepancies observed here are similar to those presented in prior studies. While a missing atmospheric organic peroxy radical source from volatile organic compounds co-emitted with NO could be one plausible solution to the P(O3 discrepancy, such a source has not been identified and does not fully explain the peroxy radical model–data mismatch. If the MOPS accurately depicts atmospheric P(O3, then these results would imply that P(O3 in Golden, CO, would be NOx-sensitive for more of the day than what is calculated by models, extending the NOx-sensitive P(O3 regime from the afternoon further into the morning. These results could affect ozone reduction strategies for the region surrounding Golden and possibly other areas that do not comply with national ozone

  11. The higher level of complexity of K-Ras4B activation at the membrane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Hyunbum; Banerjee, Avik; Chavan, Tanmay S.; Lu, Shaoyong; Zhang, Jian; Gaponenko, Vadim; Nussinov, Ruth

    2016-01-01

    Is nucleotide exchange sufficient to activate K-Ras4B? To signal, oncogenic rat sarcoma (Ras) anchors in the membrane and recruits effectors by exposing its effector lobe. With the use of NMR and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, we observed that in solution, farnesylated guanosine 5′-diphosphate (GDP)-bound K-Ras4B is predominantly autoinhibited by its hypervariable region (HVR), whereas the GTP-bound state favors an activated, HVR-released state. On the anionic membrane, the catalytic domain adopts multiple orientations, including parallel (∼180°) and perpendicular (∼90°) alignments of the allosteric helices, with respect to the membrane surface direction. In the autoinhibited state, the HVR is sandwiched between the effector lobe and the membrane; in the active state, with membrane-anchored farnesyl and unrestrained HVR, the catalytic domain fluctuates reinlessly, exposing its effector-binding site. Dimerization and clustering can reduce the fluctuations. This achieves preorganized, productive conformations. Notably, we also observe HVR-autoinhibited K-Ras4B-GTP states, with GDP-bound-like orientations of the helices. Thus, we propose that the GDP/GTP exchange may not be sufficient for activation; instead, our results suggest that the GDP/GTP exchange, HVR sequestration, farnesyl insertion, and orientation/localization of the catalytic domain at the membrane conjointly determine the active or inactive state of K-Ras4B. Importantly, K-Ras4B-GTP can exist in active and inactive states; on its own, GTP binding may not compel K-Ras4B activation.—Jang, H., Banerjee, A., Chavan, T. S, Lu, S., Zhang, J., Gaponenko, V., Nussinov, R. The higher level of complexity of K-Ras4B activation at the membrane. PMID:26718888

  12. The higher level of complexity of K-Ras4B activation at the membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Hyunbum; Banerjee, Avik; Chavan, Tanmay S; Lu, Shaoyong; Zhang, Jian; Gaponenko, Vadim; Nussinov, Ruth

    2016-04-01

    Is nucleotide exchange sufficient to activate K-Ras4B? To signal, oncogenic rat sarcoma (Ras) anchors in the membrane and recruits effectors by exposing its effector lobe. With the use of NMR and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, we observed that in solution, farnesylated guanosine 5'-diphosphate (GDP)-bound K-Ras4B is predominantly autoinhibited by its hypervariable region (HVR), whereas the GTP-bound state favors an activated, HVR-released state. On the anionic membrane, the catalytic domain adopts multiple orientations, including parallel (∼180°) and perpendicular (∼90°) alignments of the allosteric helices, with respect to the membrane surface direction. In the autoinhibited state, the HVR is sandwiched between the effector lobe and the membrane; in the active state, with membrane-anchored farnesyl and unrestrained HVR, the catalytic domain fluctuates reinlessly, exposing its effector-binding site. Dimerization and clustering can reduce the fluctuations. This achieves preorganized, productive conformations. Notably, we also observe HVR-autoinhibited K-Ras4B-GTP states, with GDP-bound-like orientations of the helices. Thus, we propose that the GDP/GTP exchange may not be sufficient for activation; instead, our results suggest that the GDP/GTP exchange, HVR sequestration, farnesyl insertion, and orientation/localization of the catalytic domain at the membrane conjointly determine the active or inactive state of K-Ras4B. Importantly, K-Ras4B-GTP can exist in active and inactive states; on its own, GTP binding may not compel K-Ras4B activation.-Jang, H., Banerjee, A., Chavan, T. S, Lu, S., Zhang, J., Gaponenko, V., Nussinov, R. The higher level of complexity of K-Ras4B activation at the membrane. © FASEB.

  13. Serum Magnesium Levels in Preterm Infants Are Higher Than Adult Levels: A Systematic Literature Review and Meta-Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacques Rigo

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Magnesium (Mg is an essential mineral in the body, impacting the synthesis of biomacromolecules, bone matrix development, energy production, as well as heart, nerve, and muscle function. Although the importance of Mg is evident, reference values for serum Mg (sMg in pediatric patients (more specifically, in neonates are not well established. This systematic literature review and meta-analysis (using 47 eligible studies aims to quantify normal and tolerable ranges of sMg concentrations during the neonatal period and to highlight the factors influencing Mg levels and the importance of regulating sMg levels during pregnancy and birth. In newborns without Mg supplementation during pregnancy, magnesium levels at birth (0.76 (95% CI: 0.52, 0.99 mmol/L were similar to that of mothers during pregnancy (0.74 (95% CI: 0.43, 1.04 mmol/L, but increased during the first week of life (0.91 (95% CI: 0.55, 1.26 mmol/L before returning to adult levels. This pattern was also seen in newborns with Mg supplementation during pregnancy, where the average was 1.29 (95% CI: 0.50, 2.08 mmol/L at birth and 1.44 (95% CI: 0.61, 2.27 mmol/L during the first week of life. Factors influencing these levels include prenatal Mg supplementation, gestational age, birth weight, renal maturity/function, and postnatal Mg intake. Elevated Mg levels (>2.5 mmol/L have been associated with an increased risk of mortality, admission into intensive care, hypotonia, hypotension, and respiratory depression but sMg concentrations up to 2.0 mmol/L appear to be well tolerated in neonates, requiring adequate survey and minimal intervention.

  14. New levels of Ta II with energies higher than 72,000 cm−1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Uddin, Zaheer; Windholz, Laurentius

    2014-01-01

    We studied the hyperfine structure of Tantalum lines appearing in a high-resolution Fourier transform spectrum. Hundreds of lines of Ta in this spectrum are still unclassified; most of them, especially in the UV region, belong to Ta II. When investigating such lines we found 14 new levels of Ta II. These new levels are the highest-lying known Ta II levels and do not belong to the already known configurations. - Highlights: • We report the discovery of 14 even energy levels of the first ion of Tantalum (Ta II). • Their energy ranges from 72,000 to 81,000 cm −1 . • For comparison, up to now only even levels between 0 and 44,000 cm −1 were known. • These levels belong to up to now unknown electron configurations. • With help of these levels, approximately 100 spectral lines of Ta II can be classified

  15. Intracochlear Position of Cochlear Implants Determined Using CT Scanning versus Fitting Levels: Higher Threshold Levels at Basal Turn

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beek, F.B. van der; Briaire, J.J.; Marel, K.S. van der; Verbist, B.M.; Frijns, J.H.

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: In this study, the effects of the intracochlear position of cochlear implants on the clinical fitting levels were analyzed. DESIGN: A total of 130 adult subjects who used a CII/HiRes 90K cochlear implant with a HiFocus 1/1J electrode were included in the study. The insertion angle and

  16. Artificial light and nocturnal activity in gammarids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth K. Perkin

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Artificial light is gaining attention as a potential stressor to aquatic ecosystems. Artificial lights located near streams increase light levels experienced by stream invertebrates and we hypothesized light would depress night drift rates. We also hypothesized that the effect of light on drift rates would decrease over time as the invertebrates acclimated to the new light level over the course of one month’s exposure. These hypotheses were tested by placing Gammarus spp. in eight, 75 m × 1 m artificial flumes. One flume was exposed to strong (416 lx artificial light at night. This strong light created a gradient between 4.19 and 0.04 lx over the neighboring six artificial flumes, while a control flume was completely covered with black plastic at night. Night-time light measurements taken in the Berlin area confirm that half the flumes were at light levels experienced by urban aquatic invertebrates. Surprisingly, no light treatment affected gammarid drift rates. In contrast, physical activity measurements of in situ individually caged G. roeseli showed they increased short-term activity levels in nights of complete darkness and decreased activity levels in brightly lit flumes. Both nocturnal and diurnal drift increased, and day drift rates were unexpectadly higher than nocturnal drift.

  17. Utilizing an Artificial Outcrop to Scaffold Learning Between Laboratory and Field Experiences in a College-Level Introductory Geology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Meredith

    Geologic field trips are among the most beneficial learning experiences for students as they engage the topic of geology, but they are also difficult environments to maximize learning. This action research study explored one facet of the problems associated with teaching geology in the field by attempting to improve the transition of undergraduate students from a traditional laboratory setting to an authentic field environment. Utilizing an artificial outcrop, called the GeoScene, during an introductory college-level non-majors geology course, the transition was studied. The GeoScene was utilized in this study as an intermediary between laboratory and authentic field based experiences, allowing students to apply traditional laboratory learning in an outdoor environment. The GeoScene represented a faux field environment; outside, more complex and tangible than a laboratory, but also simplified geologically and located safely within the confines of an educational setting. This exploratory study employed a mixed-methods action research design. The action research design allowed for systematic inquiry by the teacher/researcher into how the students learned. The mixed-methods approach garnered several types of qualitative and quantitative data to explore phenomena and support conclusions. Several types of data were collected and analyzed, including: visual recordings of the intervention, interviews, analytic memos, student reflections, field practical exams, and a pre/post knowledge and skills survey, to determine whether the intervention affected student comprehension and interpretation of geologic phenomena in an authentic field environment, and if so, how. Students enrolled in two different sections of the same laboratory course, sharing a common lecture, participated in laboratory exercises implementing experiential learning and constructivist pedagogies that focused on learning the basic geological skills necessary for work in a field environment. These laboratory

  18. Bibliography: Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Richard L.

    1986-01-01

    Annotates reference material on artificial intelligence, mostly at an introductory level, with applications to education and learning. Topics include: (1) programing languages; (2) expert systems; (3) language instruction; (4) tutoring systems; and (5) problem solving and reasoning. (JM)

  19. Evaluating the Level of Degree Programmes in Higher Education: Conceptual Design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rexwinkel, Trudy; Haenen, Jacques; Pilot, Albert

    2013-01-01

    Evaluating the level of degree programmes became crucial with the Bologna Agreement in 1999 when European ministers agreed to implement common bachelor's and master's degree programmes and a common system of quality assurance. The European Quality Assurance system demands evaluation of the degree programme level based on valid and reliable…

  20. Evaluating the level of degree programmes in higher education: The case of nursing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rexwinkel, G.B.; Haenen, J.P.P.; Pilot, A.

    2013-01-01

    The European Quality Assurance system demands that the degree programme level is represented in terms of quantitative outcomes to be valid and reliable. To meet this need the Educational Level Evaluator (ELE) was devised. This conceptually designed procedure with instrumentation aiming to evaluate

  1. Higher level of NT-proCNP in cerebrospinal fluid of patients with meningitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomasiuk, Ryszard; Lipowski, Dariusz; Szlufik, Stanislaw; Peplinska, Krystyna; Mikaszewska-Sokolewicz, Malgorzata

    2016-02-12

    Aminoterminal pro-C type natriuretic peptide (NT-proCNP) as an active form of CNP, has been recently proven to be a potential marker of sepsis and to be linked to inflammatory diseases. So far, there are no studies describing the level of NT-proCNP in meningitis. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic value of NT-proCNP in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in patients with meningitis and to compare it with the serum level of CRP and procalcitonin (PCT) in this group of patients. The results were compared to serum levels of CRP, PCT and CSF levels of cytosis, protein and lactate. NT-proCNP levels were statistically significant between the control group and the meningitis groups (p=0.02; R=0.3). We also noted a correlation between the level of NT-proCNP in the CSF of all of the study groups (controls and meningitis patients) and the CSF levels of cytosis (p0.05; R=0.11). These results suggest that NT-proCNP could be a potential marker of meningitis, but it cannot be used to distinguish between the types of meningitis. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Internal and External Influences on Program-Level Curriculum Development in Higher Education Fashion Merchandising Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Janice E.

    2010-01-01

    In an ever changing global economy, higher education experiences accountability issues in educating the workforce. Graduates require the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in the global workplace. For graduates to have the opportunity to attain this understanding and expertise, it is critical to identify what influences curriculum…

  3. Tensions in Higher Education Leadership: Towards a Multi-Level Model of Leadership Practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolden, Richard; Petrov, Georgy; Gosling, Jonathan

    2008-01-01

    UK higher education is undergoing a period of significant change that generates a series of tensions and difficulties for universities and university leaders. This paper explores these tensions through analysis of findings from a study comprising 152 semi-structured face-to-face interviews in 12 UK universities. Building on from theories of…

  4. Positive Attitude toward Healthy Eating Predicts Higher Diet Quality at All Cost Levels of Supermarkets☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aggarwal, Anju; Monsivais, Pablo; Cook, Andrea J.; Drewnowski, Adam

    2014-01-01

    Shopping at low-cost supermarkets has been associated with higher obesity rates. This study examined whether attitudes toward healthy eating are independently associated with diet quality among shoppers at low-cost, medium-cost, and high-cost supermarkets. Data on socioeconomic status (SES), attitudes toward healthy eating, and supermarket choice were collected using a telephone survey of a representative sample of adult residents of King County, WA. Dietary intake data were based on a food frequency questionnaire. Thirteen supermarket chains were stratified into three categories: low, medium, and high cost, based on a market basket of 100 commonly eaten foods. Diet-quality measures were energy density, mean adequacy ratio, and total servings of fruits and vegetables. The analytical sample consisted of 963 adults. Multivariable regressions with robust standard error examined relations between diet quality, supermarket type, attitudes, and SES. Shopping at higher-cost supermarkets was associated with higher-quality diets. These associations persisted after adjusting for SES, but were eliminated after taking attitudinal measures into account. Supermarket shoppers with positive attitudes toward healthy eating had equally higher-quality diets, even if they shopped at low-, medium-, or high-cost supermarkets, independent of SES and other covariates. These findings imply that shopping at low-cost supermarkets does not prevent consumers from having high-quality diets, as long as they attach importance to good nutrition. Promoting nutrition-education strategies among supermarkets, particularly those catering to low-income groups, can help to improve diet quality. PMID:23916974

  5. Lowering the Cost Barrier to Higher Education for Undocumented Students: A Promising University-Level Intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thangasamy, Andrew; Horan, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    Undocumented students, many of Hispanic origin, face among the strictest cost barriers to higher education in the United States. Lack of legal status excludes them from most state and all federal financial aid programs. Furthermore, most states require them to pay out-of-state tuition rates at publicly supported institutions. In a new direction,…

  6. Higher prevalence of depressive symptoms in middle-aged men with low serum cholesterol levels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P.H.A. Steegmans; A.W. Hoes (Arno); A.A.A. Bak (Annette); E. van der Does (Emiel); D.E. Grobbee (Diederick)

    2000-01-01

    textabstractOBJECTIVE: Investigators from several studies have reported a positive relationship between low cholesterol levels and death due to violent causes (eg, suicide and accidents), possibly mediated by depressive symptoms, aggression or hostility, or

  7. Diabetes mellitus type 2 is associated with higher levels of myeloperoxidase

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wiersma, Jacobijne J.; Meuwese, Marijn C.; van Miert, Joram N. I.; Kastelein, Arnoud; Tijssen, Jan G. P.; Piek, Jan J.; Trip, Mieke D.

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Diabetes mellitus type 2 is linked to augmented endothelial dysfunction and accelerated atherosclerosis. Myeloperoxidase plays an important role in the initiation, progression, and the complications of atherosclerosis. We investigated whether myeloperoxidase levels are increased in

  8. Higher levels of depression are associated with reduced global bias in visual processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Fockert, Jan W; Cooper, Andrew

    2014-04-01

    Negative moods have been associated with a tendency to prioritise local details in visual processing. The current study investigated the relation between depression and visual processing using the Navon task, a standard task of local and global processing. In the Navon task, global stimuli are presented that are made up of many local parts, and the participants are instructed to report the identity of either a global or a local target shape. Participants with a low self-reported level of depression showed evidence of the expected global processing bias, and were significantly faster at responding to the global, compared with the local level. By contrast, no such difference was observed in participants with high levels of depression. The reduction of the global bias associated with high levels of depression was only observed in the overall speed of responses to global (versus local) targets, and not in the level of interference produced by the global (versus local) distractors. These results are in line with recent findings of a dissociation between local/global processing bias and interference from local/global distractors, and support the claim that depression is associated with a reduction in the tendency to prioritise global-level processing.

  9. Mind the Gap: An Initial Analysis of the Transition of a Second Level Curriculum Reform to Higher Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prendergast, Mark; Faulkner, Fiona; Breen, Cormac; Carr, Michael

    2017-01-01

    This article details an initial analysis of the transition of a second level curriculum reform to higher education in Ireland. The reform entitled 'Project Maths' involved changes to what second level students learn in mathematics, how they learn it, and how they are assessed. Changes were rolled out nationally on a phased basis in September 2010.…

  10. Understanding the Relative Contributions of Lower-Level Word Processes, Higher-Level Processes, and Working Memory to Reading Comprehension Performance in Proficient Adult Readers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hannon, Brenda

    2012-01-01

    Although a considerable amount of evidence has been amassed regarding the contributions of lower-level word processes, higher-level processes, and working memory to reading comprehension, little is known about the relationships among these sources of individual differences or their relative contributions to reading comprehension performance. This…

  11. Positive attitude toward healthy eating predicts higher diet quality at all cost levels of supermarkets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aggarwal, Anju; Monsivais, Pablo; Cook, Andrea J; Drewnowski, Adam

    2014-02-01

    Shopping at low-cost supermarkets has been associated with higher obesity rates. This study examined whether attitudes toward healthy eating are independently associated with diet quality among shoppers at low-cost, medium-cost, and high-cost supermarkets. Data on socioeconomic status (SES), attitudes toward healthy eating, and supermarket choice were collected using a telephone survey of a representative sample of adult residents of King County, WA. Dietary intake data were based on a food frequency questionnaire. Thirteen supermarket chains were stratified into three categories: low, medium, and high cost, based on a market basket of 100 commonly eaten foods. Diet-quality measures were energy density, mean adequacy ratio, and total servings of fruits and vegetables. The analytical sample consisted of 963 adults. Multivariable regressions with robust standard error examined relations between diet quality, supermarket type, attitudes, and SES. Shopping at higher-cost supermarkets was associated with higher-quality diets. These associations persisted after adjusting for SES, but were eliminated after taking attitudinal measures into account. Supermarket shoppers with positive attitudes toward healthy eating had equally higher-quality diets, even if they shopped at low-, medium-, or high-cost supermarkets, independent of SES and other covariates. These findings imply that shopping at low-cost supermarkets does not prevent consumers from having high-quality diets, as long as they attach importance to good nutrition. Promoting nutrition-education strategies among supermarkets, particularly those catering to low-income groups, can help to improve diet quality. Copyright © 2014 Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Digital Immigrants and Digital Natives: Learning Business Informatics at Higher Educational Level

    OpenAIRE

    Suša, Dalia

    2014-01-01

    Background: The term digital natives refer to those born since the 1980s and have been growing up surrounded by technology. On the other hand, digital immigrants are born before 1980s and learned how to use technology later in life. Objectives: Goal of the paper is to explore attitudes of digital native students on the course of Business Informatics at higher educational institutions (HEIs), and to compare them with attitudes of digital immigrants. Methods/Approach: The survey was conducted i...

  13. Process-Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning Strategy Enhances Students’ Higher Level Thinking Skills in a Pharmaceutical Sciences Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verlinden, Nathan; Kruger, Nicholas; Carroll, Ailey; Trumbo, Tiffany

    2015-01-01

    Objective. To determine if the process-oriented guided inquiry learning (POGIL) teaching strategy improves student performance and engages higher-level thinking skills of first-year pharmacy students in an Introduction to Pharmaceutical Sciences course. Design. Overall examination scores and scores on questions categorized as requiring either higher-level or lower-level thinking skills were compared in the same course taught over 3 years using traditional lecture methods vs the POGIL strategy. Student perceptions of the latter teaching strategy were also evaluated. Assessment. Overall mean examination scores increased significantly when POGIL was implemented. Performance on questions requiring higher-level thinking skills was significantly higher, whereas performance on questions requiring lower-level thinking skills was unchanged when the POGIL strategy was used. Student feedback on use of this teaching strategy was positive. Conclusion. The use of the POGIL strategy increased student overall performance on examinations, improved higher-level thinking skills, and provided an interactive class setting. PMID:25741027

  14. Phase transitions between lower and higher level management learning in times of crisis: an experimental study based on synergetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liening, Andreas; Strunk, Guido; Mittelstadt, Ewald

    2013-10-01

    Much has been written about the differences between single- and double-loop learning, or more general between lower level and higher level learning. Especially in times of a fundamental crisis, a transition between lower and higher level learning would be an appropriate reaction to a challenge coming entirely out of the dark. However, so far there is no quantitative method to monitor such a transition. Therefore we introduce theory and methods of synergetics and present results from an experimental study based on the simulation of a crisis within a business simulation game. Hypothesized critical fluctuations - as a marker for so-called phase transitions - have been assessed with permutation entropy. Results show evidence for a phase transition during the crisis, which can be interpreted as a transition between lower and higher level learning.

  15. Higher Serum Uric Acid Levels in Multiple Sclerosis Patients After Longterm Interferon Beta Treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toncev Gordana

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Interferon beta is a safe and efficacious treatment for relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS. However, there is some evidence that uric acid, a scavenger of peroxynitrite, is involved in MS pathology and that increasing serum uric acid levels might have beneficial therapeutic effects. The aim of this study is to investigate serum uric acid levels in MS patients before and after long-term interferon beta treatment. Blood samples from 101 MS patients (53 receiving interferon beta 1a treatment and 48 receiving interferon beta 1b treatment; 28 male and 73 female; mean age at treatment onset 32,4±7,3 years; mean duration of disease at treatment onset 5,1±3,2 years; mean EDSS 2±1,3 before and after interferon beta treatment (mean treatment duration 3±2 years were analysed. Serum uric acid levels were measured using a quantitative enzymatic assay (Elitech Diagnostic, Sees, France. MS patients had significantly increased serum uric acid levels after treatment compared with those at the beginning of treatment (272,31±78,21 μmol/l vs. 210,17±53,65 μmol/l; p=0,019, Wilcoxon Mann-Whitney U-test. We did not find significant differences in serum uric acid levels between the interferon beta 1a and interferon beta 1b groups (p=0.98. These results indicate that one of the beneficial effects of interferon beta in MS might be based on the elevation of serum uric acid levels as a natural scavenger of peroxynitrite.

  16. Higher levels of state depression in masculine than in feminine nations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arrindell, W.A.; Steptoe, A.; Wardle, J.

    Studies using identical measures have identified different levels of depression in different countries or cultures. Until now, however, explanations for such differences, other than methodological ones, have not been empirically addressed. It was hypothesized and found that soft or feminine nations

  17. The Effects of Higher Education/Military Service on Achievement Levels of Police Academy Cadets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Thomas Allen

    This study compared levels of achievement of three groups of Houston (Texas) police academy cadets: those with no military service but with 60 or more college credit hours, those with military service and 0 hours of college credit, and those with military service and 1 to 59 hours of college credit. Prior to 1991, police cadets in Houston were…

  18. The relation between otoacoustic emissions and the broadening of the auditory filter for higher levels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuw, A. R.; Dreschler, W. A.

    1998-01-01

    The active behaviour of outer hair cells (OHCs) is often used to explain two phenomena, namely otoacoustic emissions (OAEs) and the level dependence of auditory filters. Correlations between these two phenomena may contribute to the evidence of these hypotheses. In this study auditory filters were

  19. Higher circulating levels of IGF-1 are associated with longer leukocyte telomere length in healthy subjects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Barbieri, Michelangela; Paolisso, Giuseppe; Kimura, Masayuki

    2009-01-01

    Mutations that inhibit the insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) extend the lifespan of worms, flies and mice. However, it appears that relatively low circulating levels of IGF-1 in humans are associated with aging-related diseases and diminished longevity. As leukocyte telomere length (LTL) is os...

  20. Socioeconomic Status, Higher-Level Mathematics Courses, Absenteeism, and Student Mobility as Indicators of Work Readiness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Folds, Lea D.; Tanner, C. Kenneth

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to analyze the relations among socioeconomic status, highest-level mathematics course, absenteeism, student mobility and measures of work readiness of high school seniors in Georgia. Study participants were 476 high school seniors in one Georgia county. The full regression model explained 27.5% of the variance in…

  1. Evaluating the level of degree programmes in higher education: Conceptual design

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rexwinkel, G.B.; Haenen, J.P.P.; Pilot, A.

    2013-01-01

    Evaluating the level of degree programmes became crucial with the Bologna Agreement in 1999 when European ministers agreed to implement common bachelor’s and master’s degree programmes and a common system of quality assurance. The European Quality Assurance system demands evaluation of the degree

  2. Two-photon excitation of higher sodium levels and population transfer in a flame

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dijk, C.A. van.

    1978-01-01

    Studies of the higher excited states of alkali atoms in the inelastic collisional interaction between excited alkali atoms and flame particles have been made. The emphasis is on an exploration of the possibilities that a flame, in combination with a laser, offers for such studies, rather than on obtaining detailed information concerning collisional transitions. Sodium atoms in a H 2 -O 2 -Ar flame at atmospheric pressure and a temperature of 1800 K were chosen as the system to be investigated. (C.F.)

  3. Artificial Consciousness or Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Spanache Florin

    2017-01-01

    Artificial intelligence is a tool designed by people for the gratification of their own creative ego, so we can not confuse conscience with intelligence and not even intelligence in its human representation with conscience. They are all different concepts and they have different uses. Philosophically, there are differences between autonomous people and automatic artificial intelligence. This is the difference between intelligence and artificial intelligence, autonomous versus a...

  4. Associations between Depressive State and Impaired Higher-Level Functional Capacity in the Elderly with Long-Term Care Requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogata, Soshiro; Hayashi, Chisato; Sugiura, Keiko; Hayakawa, Kazuo

    2015-01-01

    Depressive state has been reported to be significantly associated with higher-level functional capacity among community-dwelling elderly. However, few studies have investigated the associations among people with long-term care requirements. We aimed to investigate the associations between depressive state and higher-level functional capacity and obtain marginal odds ratios using propensity score analyses in people with long-term care requirements. We conducted a cross-sectional study based on participants aged ≥ 65 years (n = 545) who were community dwelling and used outpatient care services for long-term preventive care. We measured higher-level functional capacity, depressive state, and possible confounders. Then, we estimated the marginal odds ratios (i.e., the change in odds of impaired higher-level functional capacity if all versus no participants were exposed to depressive state) by logistic models using generalized linear models with the inverse probability of treatment weighting (IPTW) for propensity score and design-based standard errors. Depressive state was used as the exposure variable and higher-level functional capacity as the outcome variable. The all absolute standardized differences after the IPTW using the propensity scores were functional capacity.

  5. Lower Squalene Epoxidase and Higher Scavenger Receptor Class B Type 1 Protein Levels Are Involved in Reduced Serum Cholesterol Levels in Stroke-Prone Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michihara, Akihiro; Mido, Mayuko; Matsuoka, Hiroshi; Mizutani, Yurika

    2015-01-01

    A lower serum cholesterol level was recently shown to be one of the causes of stroke in an epidemiological study. Spontaneously hypertensive rats stroke-prone (SHRSP) have lower serum cholesterol levels than normotensive Wistar-Kyoto rats (WKY). To elucidate the mechanisms responsible for the lower serum cholesterol levels in SHRSP, we determined whether the amounts of cholesterol biosynthetic enzymes or the receptor and transporter involved in cholesterol uptake and efflux in the liver were altered in SHRSP. When the mRNA levels of seven cholesterol biosynthetic enzymes were measured using real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), farnesyl pyrophosphate synthase and squalene epoxidase (SQE) levels in the liver of SHRSP were significantly lower than those in WKY. SQE protein levels were significantly reduced in tissues other than the brain of SHRSP. No significant differences were observed in low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor (uptake of serum LDL-cholesterol) or ATP-binding cassette transporter A1 (efflux of cholesterol from the liver/formation of high-density lipoprotein (HDL)) protein levels in the liver and testis between SHRSP and WKY, whereas scavenger receptor class B type 1 (SRB1: uptake of serum HDL-cholesterol) protein levels were higher in the livers of SHRSP. These results indicated that the lower protein levels of SQE and higher protein levels of SRB1 in the liver were involved in the reduced serum cholesterol levels in SHRSP.

  6. The Fulfilment Level of Turkic Republics Higher Education Students' Academic and Social Expectations in Turkey

    OpenAIRE

    Mirgül ENTERİEVA; Ferudun SEZGİN

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study is to determine the fulfilment level of students who come from Turkic Republics to study in Turkey, regarding their academic and social expectations. The qualita-tive research technique and phenomenological design were used in the study. Data of this research was collected via a semistructured interview form consisting 11 openended questions and probes, which were developed by the researchers. A total of 39 undergraduate and postgraduate students from Azerbaijan, Kazakhs...

  7. Taking Advertising Literacy to a Higher Level: An Exploratory Multilevel Analysis of Children's Advertising Literacy

    OpenAIRE

    De Pauw, Pieter; Cauberghe, Veroline; Hudders, Liselot

    2017-01-01

    As few studies focus on how children’s coping with advertising is affected by their environment, the present study uses multilevel analysis to explore the role of both primary (i.e. parents) and secondary socializing agents (i.e. classmates, teachers) in children’s advertising literacy. The results show that children’s cognitive advertising literacy and attitudes toward advertising are to a large extent determined by class-level processes. Their moral advertising literacy is a more individual...

  8. [Artificial organs].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raguin, Thibaut; Dupret-Bories, Agnès; Debry, Christian

    2017-01-01

    Research has been fighting against organ failure and shortage of donations by supplying artificial organs for many years. With the raise of new technologies, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, many organs can benefit of an artificial equivalent: thanks to retinal implants some blind people can visualize stimuli, an artificial heart can be proposed in case of cardiac failure while awaiting for a heart transplant, artificial larynx enables laryngectomy patients to an almost normal life, while the diabetic can get a glycemic self-regulation controlled by smartphones with an artificial device. Dialysis devices become portable, as well as the oxygenation systems for terminal respiratory failure. Bright prospects are being explored or might emerge in a near future. However, the retrospective assessment of putative side effects is not yet sufficient. Finally, the cost of these new devices is significant even if the advent of three dimensional printers may reduce it. © 2017 médecine/sciences – Inserm.

  9. Higher levels of serum lycopene are associated with reduced mortality in individuals with metabolic syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Guang-Ming; Meza, Jane L; Soliman, Ghada A; Islam, K M Monirul; Watanabe-Galloway, Shinobu

    2016-05-01

    Metabolic syndrome increases the risk of mortality. Increased oxidative stress and inflammation may play an important role in the high mortality of individuals with metabolic syndrome. Previous studies have suggested that lycopene intake might be related to the reduced oxidative stress and decreased inflammation. Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, we examined the hypothesis that lycopene is associated with mortality among individuals with metabolic syndrome. A total of 2499 participants 20 years and older with metabolic syndrome were divided into 3 groups based on their serum concentration of lycopene using the tertile rank method. The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from years 2001 to 2006 was linked to the mortality file for mortality follow-up data through December 31, 2011, to determine the mortality rate and hazard ratios (HR) for the 3 serum lycopene concentration groups. The mean survival time was significantly higher in the group with the highest serum lycopene concentration (120.6 months; 95% confidence interval [CI], 118.8-122.3) and the medium group (116.3 months; 95% CI, 115.2-117.4), compared with the group with lowest serum lycopene concentration (107.4 months; 95% CI, 106.5-108.3). After adjusting for possible confounding factors, participants in the highest (HR, 0.61; P = .0113) and in the second highest (HR, 0.67; P = .0497) serum lycopene concentration groups showed significantly lower HRs of mortality when compared with participants in the lower serum lycopene concentration. The data suggest that higher serum lycopene concentration has a significant association with the reduced risk of mortality among individuals with metabolic syndrome. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Pre-Fukushima levels of artificial radionuclides activities in maritime samples from King George Island (South Shetlands, Antarctica)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sobiech-Matura, K. [European Commision DG-JRC Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements, Retieseweg 111, Geel (Belgium); Institute of Botany, Zdzislaw Czeppe Department of Polar Research and Documentation, Jagiellonian University, Kopernika 27, Krakow (Poland); Mietelski, J.W. [The Henryk Niewodniczanski Institute of Nuclear Physics, Polish Academy of Sciences, W.E. Radzikowskiego 152, Krakow (Poland); Olech, M.A. [Institute of Botany, Zdzislaw Czeppe Department of Polar Research and Documentation, Jagiellonian University, Kopernika 27, Krakow (Poland); Department of Antarctic Biology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Ustrzycka 10/12, Warsaw (Poland)

    2014-07-01

    Different maritime samples were collected at King George Island during Polish scientific expeditions in years 2005/2006 and 2006/2007. They originated mainly from Admiralty Bay region. Activities of {sup 137}Cs, {sup 238,239+240}Pu, {sup 90}Sr and {sup 241}Am were measured using γ-, β- and α-spectrometry. Our measurements allow estimating the state of radioactive pollution of Antarctic environment directly before the Fukushima accident. Examined samples included different elements of Antarctic marine environment: macro-algae (e.g. Cystosphaera jacquinotii, Ascoseira mirabilis), fishes(e.g. Notothenia coriiceps, Chaenocephalus aceratus), birds (e.g. Pygoscelis adeliae, P. papua), and crustaceans (e.g. Euphausia superba, Waldeckia obesa). Activity concentrations of {sup 137}Cs vary from <0.3 to 21.8 ± 2.1 Bq/kg d.w. In comparison with results obtained for samples of animals and macro-algae previously [1,2] our results are similar or lower. Activity concentrations of {sup 239+240}Pu range from <0.2 to 455 ± 56 mBq/kg d.w. and comparing to previous results [1,2] they were similar or lower. For maritime animals from Terra Nova Bay [3] results are also similar or lower than obtained in present project. Activity concentrations of {sup 238}Pu in samples varied from <0.2 to 79 ± 22 mBq/kg d.w. In comparison to results presented in [1,2,3] our values are similar or higher. Activity concentrations obtained for {sup 90}Sr varied from <1.5 to 73 ± 24 Bq/kg d.w. and are similar or lower then values given in [2,3]. Activity concentrations of {sup 241}Am varied from <9.4 to 29.8 ± 9.3 mBq/kg d.w. and they are similar or higher than values obtained in [3] and similar to that from [1]. Obtained results show that levels of radioactive contamination were very low and in many cases lower than the detection limit. Planned further investigation will allow estimating the environmental condition after the Fukushima accident. (authors)

  11. Contributions of the Higher Vibrational Levels of Nitric Oxide to the Radiative Cooling of the Thermosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkataramani, K.; Yonker, J. D.; Bailey, S. M.

    2014-12-01

    The 5.3μm emission from the vibrational levels of nitric oxide (NO) and the 15μm emission from CO2 are known to be the dominant sources of cooling in the thermosphere above 100 km. The 5.3μm emission is primarily produced by the radiative de-excitation of NO from its first vibrational level, which in turn is mainly populated by the collisions of NO with atomic oxygen. However, the reaction of atomic nitrogen (N(4S) and N(2D)) with O2 yields vibrationally excited NO with v>1, resulting in a radiative cascade which produces more than one 5.3μm photon per vibrationally excited NO molecule. This chemiluminescence is approximately 20% in magnitude of the emission produced by thermal collisions. These additional sources of the 5.3μm emission are introduced into a one dimensional photochemical model and the Thermosphere-Ionosphere-Electrodynamics General Circulation Model (TIE-GCM) to assess their variability with latitude and solar activity, and to also understand their effect on the thermospheric energy budget. The results from the models are compared with data from the Sounding of the Atmosphere using Broadband Emission Radiometry (SABER) experiment on-board the Thermosphere Ionosphere Mesosphere Energetics and Dynamics (TIMED) satellite, which has been making measurements of the infrared radiative response of the mesosphere and thermosphere to solar inputs since 2002.

  12. Unconscious fearful priming followed by a psychosocial stress test results in higher cortisol levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hänsel, Alexander; von Känel, Roland

    2013-10-01

    Human perception of stress includes an automatic pathway that processes subliminal presented stimuli below the threshold of conscious awareness. Subliminal stimuli can therefore activate the physiologic stress system. Unconscious emotional signals were shown to significantly moderate reactions and responses to subsequent stimuli, an effect called 'priming'. We hypothesized that subliminal presentation of a fearful signal during the Stroop task compared with an emotionally neutral one will prime stress reactivity in a subsequently applied psychosocial stress task, thereby yielding a significant increase in salivary cortisol. Half of 36 participants were repeatedly presented either a fearful face or a neutral one. After this, all underwent a psychosocial stress task. The fearful group showed a significant increase in cortisol levels (p = 0.022). This change was not affected by sex, age and body mass index, and it also did not change when taking resting cortisol levels into account. Post-hoc analyses showed that the increase in cortisol in the fearful group started immediately after the psychosocial stress test. Hence, subliminal exposure to a fearful signal in combination with the Stroop and followed by a psychosocial stress test leads to an increase in stress reactivity. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  13. External supports improve knee performance in anterior cruciate ligament reconstructed individuals with higher kinesiophobia levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harput, Gulcan; Ulusoy, Burak; Ozer, Hamza; Baltaci, Gul; Richards, Jim

    2016-10-01

    The objectives of this study were to investigate the effects of knee brace (KB) and kinesiotaping (KT) on functional performance and self-reported function in individuals six months post-ACLR who desired to return to their pre-injury activity levels but felt unable to do so due to kinesiophobia. This was a cross-sectional study involving 30 individuals six months post-ACLR with Tampa Kinesiophobia Scores >37. Individuals were tested under three conditions: no intervention, KB and KT in a randomized order. Isokinetic concentric quadriceps and hamstring strength tests, one leg hop test, star excursion balance test and global rating scale were assessed under the three conditions. The involved side showed that KT and KB significantly increased the hop distance (P=0.01, P=0.04) and improved balance (P=0.01, P=0.04), respectively, but only KB was found to increase the quadriceps and hamstring peak torques compared to no intervention (P<0.05). Individuals reported having better knee function with KB when compared to no intervention (P<0.001) and KT (P=0.03). Both KB and KT have positive effects in individuals post-ACLR which may assist in reducing kinesiophobia when returning to their pre-injury activity levels, with the KB appearing to offer the participants better knee function compared to KT. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Prevention of reperfusion lung injury by lidocaine in isolated rat lung ventilated with higher oxygen levels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Das K

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Lidocaine, an antiarrhythmic drug has been shown to be effective against post-ischaemic reperfusion injury in heart. However, its effect on pulmonary reperfusion injury has not been investigated. AIMS: We investigated the effects of lidocaine on a postischaemic reperfused rat lung model. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Lungs were isolated and perfused at constant flow with Krebs-Henseilet buffer containing 4% bovine serum albumin, and ventilated with 95% oxygen mixed with 5% CO2. Lungs were subjected to ischaemia by stopping perfusion for 60 minutes followed by reperfusion for 10 minutes. Ischaemia was induced in normothermic conditions. RESULTS: Postischaemic reperfusion caused significant (p < 0.0001 higher wet-to-dry lung weight ratio, pulmonary arterial pressure and peak airway pressure compared to control lungs. Lidocaine, at a dose of 5mg/Kg b.w. was found to significantly (p < 0.0001 attenuate the increase in the wet-to-dry lung weight ratio, pulmonary arterial pressure and peak airway pressure observed in post-ischaemic lungs. CONCLUSION: Lidocaine is effective in preventing post-ischaemic reperfusion injury in isolated, perfused rat lung.

  15. Distinguishing Petroleum (Crude Oil and Fuel) From Smoke Exposure within Populations Based on the Relative Blood Levels of Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene, and Xylenes (BTEX), Styrene and 2,5-Dimethylfuran by Pattern Recognition Using Artificial Neural Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, D M; Reese, C M; Thornburg, L G; Sanchez, E; Rafson, J P; Blount, B C; Ruhl, J R E; De Jesús, V R

    2018-01-02

    Studies of exposure to petroleum (crude oil/fuel) often involve monitoring benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylenes (BTEX), and styrene (BTEXS) because of their toxicity and gas-phase prevalence, where exposure is typically by inhalation. However, BTEXS levels in the general U.S. population are primarily from exposure to tobacco smoke, where smokers have blood levels on average up to eight times higher than nonsmokers. This work describes a method using partition theory and artificial neural network (ANN) pattern recognition to classify exposure source based on relative BTEXS and 2,5-dimethylfuran blood levels. A method using surrogate signatures to train the ANN was validated by comparing blood levels among cigarette smokers from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) with BTEXS and 2,5-dimethylfuran signatures derived from the smoke of machine-smoked cigarettes. Classification agreement for an ANN model trained with relative VOC levels was up to 99.8% for nonsmokers and 100.0% for smokers. As such, because there is limited blood level data on individuals exposed to crude oil/fuel, only surrogate signatures derived from crude oil and fuel were used for training the ANN. For the 2007-2008 NHANES data, the ANN model assigned 7 out of 1998 specimens (0.35%) and for the 2013-2014 NHANES data 12 out of 2906 specimens (0.41%) to the crude oil/fuel signature category.

  16. Higher Fasting Plasma Glucose Levels, within the Normal Range, are Associated with Decreased Processing Speed in High Functioning Young Elderly

    OpenAIRE

    Raizes, Meytal; Elkana, Odelia; Franko, Motty; Springer, Ramit Ravona; Segev, Shlomo; Beeri, Michal Schnaider

    2016-01-01

    We explored the association of plasma glucose levels within the normal range with processing speed in high functioning young elderly, free of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). A sample of 41 participants (mean age = 64.7, SD = 10; glucose 94.5 mg/dL, SD = 9.3), were examined with a computerized cognitive battery. Hierarchical linear regression analysis showed that higher plasma glucose levels, albeit within the normal range (

  17. Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors lower hemoglobin and hematocrit only in renal transplant recipients with initially higher levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikolasevic, I; Zaputovic, L; Zibar, L; Begic, I; Zutelija, M; Klanac, A; Majurec, I; Simundic, T; Minazek, M; Orlic, L

    2016-04-01

    We have analyzed the effects of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) inhibitors on evolution of hemoglobin (Hb) and hematocrit (Htc) levels as well as on the evaluation of kidney graft function in stable renal transplant recipients (RTRs) in respect with initially higher or lower Hb and Htc values. The study group comprised of 270 RTRs with stable graft function. Besides other prescribed antihypertensive therapy, 169 of them have been taking RAAS inhibitors. We wanted to analyze the effect of the use of RAAS inhibitors on Hb and Htc in patients with initially higher or lower Hb/Htc values. For this analysis, only RTRs that were taking RAAS inhibitors were stratified into two groups: one with higher Hb and Htc (initial Hb≥150g/L and Htc≥45%) and another one with lower Hb and Htc (initial Hb<150g/L and Htc<45%) values. Thirty-four RTRs with initially higher Hb and 41 RTRs with initially higher Htc had a statistically significant decrease in Hb (p=0.006) and Htc (p<0.0001) levels after 12-months of follow-up. In the group of patients with initially lower Hb (135 RTRs) and Htc (128 RTRs) there was a significant increase in Hb (p=0.0001) and Htc (p=0.004) levels through the observed period. The use of RAAS inhibitors has been associated with a trend of slowing renal insufficiency in RTRs (p=0.03). RAAS inhibitors lower Hb and Htc only in RTRs with initially higher levels. In patients with initially lower Hb and Htc levels, the use of these drugs is followed by beneficial impact on erythropoiesis and kidney graft function. Copyright © 2015 European Federation of Internal Medicine. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Factors in the development of higher levels of reading literacy: Argumentation skills in educational practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Branković Marija

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The highest levels of reading literacy, as defined within PISA study, include the ability to use various cognitive skills, with argumentative skills being one of the most important among them. In the present study our goal was to reveal some of the factors that influence the development of argumentative skills in Serbian schools. We investigated the extent to which argumentative skills are required in PISA reading literacy tasks, as well as the specific difficulties our students have faced on these tasks, through an analysis of student performance. We also conducted an analysis of the educational practice - by doing in-depth interviews with teachers and content analysis of students' textbooks. The results revealed that: 1 Argumentations skills are an important requirement within PISA tasks; 2 Serbian students are mostly successful at basic tasks of recognizing arguments or providing arguments for the given position; they face difficulties answering the tasks which require precise formulation of relevant arguments as well as those demanding meta-cognitive skills (e.g. recognizing persuasive strategies in the given text. Their performance is particularly poor on tasks requiring the combination of information from different sources or information presented in different formats (text, tables, or graphs; 3 There is a significant gap between the requirements for argumentation skills our students usually encounter and PISA reading literacy tasks. In this paper we discuss some of the difficulties and obstacles to encouraging the development of argumentative thinking.

  19. Leptin Levels Are Higher in Whole Compared to Skim Human Milk, Supporting a Cellular Contribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kugananthan, Sambavi; Lai, Ching Tat; Gridneva, Zoya; Mark, Peter J; Geddes, Donna T; Kakulas, Foteini

    2016-11-08

    Human milk (HM) contains a plethora of metabolic hormones, including leptin, which is thought to participate in the regulation of the appetite of the developing infant. Leptin in HM is derived from a combination of de novo mammary synthesis and transfer from the maternal serum. Moreover, leptin is partially lipophilic and is also present in HM cells. However, leptin has predominately been measured in skim HM, which contains neither fat nor cells. We optimised an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for leptin measurement in both whole and skim HM and compared leptin levels between both HM preparations collected from 61 lactating mothers. Whole HM leptin ranged from 0.2 to 1.47 ng/mL, whilst skim HM leptin ranged from 0.19 to 0.9 ng/mL. Whole HM contained, on average, 0.24 ± 0.01 ng/mL more leptin than skim HM ( p < 0.0001, n = 287). No association was found between whole HM leptin and fat content ( p = 0.17, n = 287), supporting a cellular contribution to HM leptin. No difference was found between pre- and post-feed samples (whole HM: p = 0.29, skim HM: p = 0.89). These findings highlight the importance of optimising HM leptin measurement and assaying it in whole HM to accurately examine the amount of leptin received by the infant during breastfeeding.

  20. The effects of higher hemoglobin levels on mortality and hospitalization in hemodialysis patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ofsthun, Norma; Labrecque, John; Lacson, Eduardo; Keen, Marcia; Lazarus, J Michael

    2003-05-01

    The introduction of recombinant human erythropoietin for the treatment of anemia of chronic renal failure provided the opportunity to correct anemia in this patient population. The optimal target hemoglobin for patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) remains controversial. A large database of hemodialysis patients was analyzed to determine whether increasing hemoglobin level above the current Kidney Dialysis Outcomes Quality Initiative (K/DOQI) recommendations was associated with increased risk of mortality and hospitalization. A longitudinal study of hemodialysis patients in Fresenius Medical Care-North America facilities was performed. Selection was restricted to patients in the census for 6 consecutive months from July 1, 1998 through June 30, 2000. Patient mean hemoglobin and other covariates measured during the initial 6 months were related to survival, number of hospitalizations, and length of stay over the subsequent 6 months of follow-up. Patients with hemoglobin /=13 g/dL had an adjusted length of stay of 9.6 days compared to 10.9 days for those with 11 12 g/dL.

  1. Leptin Levels Are Higher in Whole Compared to Skim Human Milk, Supporting a Cellular Contribution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sambavi Kugananthan

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Human milk (HM contains a plethora of metabolic hormones, including leptin, which is thought to participate in the regulation of the appetite of the developing infant. Leptin in HM is derived from a combination of de novo mammary synthesis and transfer from the maternal serum. Moreover, leptin is partially lipophilic and is also present in HM cells. However, leptin has predominately been measured in skim HM, which contains neither fat nor cells. We optimised an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for leptin measurement in both whole and skim HM and compared leptin levels between both HM preparations collected from 61 lactating mothers. Whole HM leptin ranged from 0.2 to 1.47 ng/mL, whilst skim HM leptin ranged from 0.19 to 0.9 ng/mL. Whole HM contained, on average, 0.24 ± 0.01 ng/mL more leptin than skim HM (p < 0.0001, n = 287. No association was found between whole HM leptin and fat content (p = 0.17, n = 287, supporting a cellular contribution to HM leptin. No difference was found between pre- and post-feed samples (whole HM: p = 0.29, skim HM: p = 0.89. These findings highlight the importance of optimising HM leptin measurement and assaying it in whole HM to accurately examine the amount of leptin received by the infant during breastfeeding.

  2. Virtual reality laparoscopy: which potential trainee starts with a higher proficiency level?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paschold, M; Schröder, M; Kauff, D W; Gorbauch, T; Herzer, M; Lang, H; Kneist, W

    2011-09-01

    Minimally invasive surgery requires technical skills distinct from those used in conventional surgery. The aim of this prospective study was to identify personal characteristics that may predict the attainable proficiency level of first-time virtual reality laparoscopy (VRL) trainees. Two hundred and seventy-nine consecutive undergraduate medical students without experience attended a standardized VRL training. Performance data of an abstract and a procedural task were correlated with possible predictive factors providing potential competence in VRL. Median global score requirement status was 86.7% (interquartile range (IQR) 75-93) for the abstract task and 74.4% (IQR 67-88) for the procedural task. Unadjusted analysis showed significant increase in the global score in both tasks for trainees who had a gaming console at home and frequently used it as well as for trainees who felt self-confident to assist in a laparoscopic operation. Multiple logistic regression analysis identified frequency of video gaming (often/frequently vs. rarely/not at all, odds ratio: abstract model 2.1 (95% confidence interval 1.2; 3.6), P = 0.009; virtual reality operation procedure 2.4 (95% confidence interval 1.3; 4.2), P = 0.003) as a predictive factor for VRL performance. Frequency of video gaming is associated with quality of first-time VRL performance. Video game experience may be used as trainee selection criteria for tailored concepts of VRL training programs.

  3. Science education through open and distance learning at Higher Education level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amrita NIGAM

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The changes faced by the society in the past few decades brought revolution in all areas. The job requirements have undergone change tremendously. The emergence of e-culture, e-education, e-governance, e-training, e-work sites and so on questioned the capacity of conventional face to face education in catering to all and relevance of existing job related skills to a great extent in the emerging global society. Today, every one has to update his/her educational and/or professional skills and competencies to cope up with the emerging work challenges. This is more so in the field of science and technology. At the same time, it is impossible to cater to educational and training opportunities to one and all those who aspire for it through the conventional set up. The distance and open learning (ODL seems to be one of the viable alternatives. Today, the success and viability of ODL is accepted globally. Coulter (1989, through a study demonstrated that ODL is a cost-effective medium in providing educational opportunities. Similarly Holmberg (1981 also mentioned ODL as a systematic teaching-learning medium by using variety of medium for imparting learning. The present study is an attempt to study the experiences of the open science learners of IGNOU on different aspect of the science higher education. Here a questionnaire was used to collect the data and responses from 81 students enrolled for B. Sc. from IGNOU were collected. The findings of the study reported that society has undergone drastic changes in the last few decades. The revolution led due to Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs have widely affected all aspects of society. The emerging jobs require entirely new skills and competencies i.e., employment in BPOs or switching over to e-governance, e-Banking and e- based sectors. Even e-learning has made numerous expectations from teachers and other personnel. The use of ICTs in almost every field needs adequately trained

  4. Artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Ennals, J R

    1987-01-01

    Artificial Intelligence: State of the Art Report is a two-part report consisting of the invited papers and the analysis. The editor first gives an introduction to the invited papers before presenting each paper and the analysis, and then concludes with the list of references related to the study. The invited papers explore the various aspects of artificial intelligence. The analysis part assesses the major advances in artificial intelligence and provides a balanced analysis of the state of the art in this field. The Bibliography compiles the most important published material on the subject of

  5. Congruence and diversity of butterfly-host plant associations at higher taxonomic levels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José R Ferrer-Paris

    Full Text Available We aggregated data on butterfly-host plant associations from existing sources in order to address the following questions: (1 is there a general correlation between host diversity and butterfly species richness?, (2 has the evolution of host plant use followed consistent patterns across butterfly lineages?, (3 what is the common ancestral host plant for all butterfly lineages? The compilation included 44,148 records from 5,152 butterfly species (28.6% of worldwide species of Papilionoidea and 1,193 genera (66.3%. The overwhelming majority of butterflies use angiosperms as host plants. Fabales is used by most species (1,007 spp. from all seven butterfly families and most subfamilies, Poales is the second most frequently used order, but is mostly restricted to two species-rich subfamilies: Hesperiinae (56.5% of all Hesperiidae, and Satyrinae (42.6% of all Nymphalidae. We found a significant and strong correlation between host plant diversity and butterfly species richness. A global test for congruence (Parafit test was sensitive to uncertainty in the butterfly cladogram, and suggests a mixed system with congruent associations between Papilionidae and magnoliids, Hesperiidae and monocots, and the remaining subfamilies with the eudicots (fabids and malvids, but also numerous random associations. The congruent associations are also recovered as the most probable ancestral states in each node using maximum likelihood methods. The shift from basal groups to eudicots appears to be more likely than the other way around, with the only exception being a Satyrine-clade within the Nymphalidae that feed on monocots. Our analysis contributes to the visualization of the complex pattern of interactions at superfamily level and provides a context to discuss the timing of changes in host plant utilization that might have promoted diversification in some butterfly lineages.

  6. Congruence and diversity of butterfly-host plant associations at higher taxonomic levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrer-Paris, José R; Sánchez-Mercado, Ada; Viloria, Ángel L; Donaldson, John

    2013-01-01

    We aggregated data on butterfly-host plant associations from existing sources in order to address the following questions: (1) is there a general correlation between host diversity and butterfly species richness?, (2) has the evolution of host plant use followed consistent patterns across butterfly lineages?, (3) what is the common ancestral host plant for all butterfly lineages? The compilation included 44,148 records from 5,152 butterfly species (28.6% of worldwide species of Papilionoidea) and 1,193 genera (66.3%). The overwhelming majority of butterflies use angiosperms as host plants. Fabales is used by most species (1,007 spp.) from all seven butterfly families and most subfamilies, Poales is the second most frequently used order, but is mostly restricted to two species-rich subfamilies: Hesperiinae (56.5% of all Hesperiidae), and Satyrinae (42.6% of all Nymphalidae). We found a significant and strong correlation between host plant diversity and butterfly species richness. A global test for congruence (Parafit test) was sensitive to uncertainty in the butterfly cladogram, and suggests a mixed system with congruent associations between Papilionidae and magnoliids, Hesperiidae and monocots, and the remaining subfamilies with the eudicots (fabids and malvids), but also numerous random associations. The congruent associations are also recovered as the most probable ancestral states in each node using maximum likelihood methods. The shift from basal groups to eudicots appears to be more likely than the other way around, with the only exception being a Satyrine-clade within the Nymphalidae that feed on monocots. Our analysis contributes to the visualization of the complex pattern of interactions at superfamily level and provides a context to discuss the timing of changes in host plant utilization that might have promoted diversification in some butterfly lineages.

  7. Explaining participation differentials in Dutch higher education: The impact of subjective success probabilities on level choice and field choice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tolsma, J.; Need, A.; Jong, U. de

    2010-01-01

    In this article we examine whether subjective estimates of success probabilities explain the effect of social origin, sex, and ethnicity on students' choices between different school tracks in Dutch higher education. The educational options analysed differ in level (i.e. university versus

  8. Changing conditions require a higher level of entrepreneurship by farmers: use of an interactive strategic management tool

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beldman, A.C.G.; Lakner, D.; Smit, A.B.

    2013-01-01

    Changing conditions require a higher level of entrepreneurship by farmers. The method of interactive strategic management (ISM) has been developed to support farmers in developing strategic skills. The method is based on three principles: (1) emphasis is on the entrepreneur; (2) interaction with the

  9. Modelling in Action. Scaffolding High School Students to Higher Levels of Autonomy: The School's Elevator and the Inverse Problem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marmolejo Rivas, Eugenia

    2017-01-01

    In this paper, we focus our discussion on the strategy we follow to scaffold high school students to successfully build models of a real-life system. Our aim is for students to gradually achieve a higher level of autonomy and to use and further develop their mathematical knowledge. We present work students did when we asked them to build a model…

  10. Critical Sociological Thinking and Higher-Level Thinking: A Study of Sociologists' Teaching Goals and Assignments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kane, Danielle; Otto, Kristin

    2018-01-01

    We argue that the literature on critical thinking in sociology has conflated two different skill sets: critical sociological thinking and higher-level thinking. To begin to examine how sociologists weigh and cultivate these skill sets, we interviewed 20 sociology instructors and conducted a content analysis of 26 assignments. We found that while…

  11. Higher levels of masculine gender role stress in masculine than in feminine nations. A thirteen-nations study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arrindell, W.A.; van Well, S.; Kolk, A.M.; Barelds, D.P.H.; Oei, T.P.S.; Lau, P.Y.

    2013-01-01

    It was hypothesized that societies that put greater emphasis on men being rigidly committed to culturally accepted models of masculinity (nations with high Hofstede MASculinity scores) would report higher mean national levels of masculine gender role stress (MGRS) than societies that emphasize such

  12. Higher Levels of Masculine Gender Role Stress in Masculine than in Feminine Nations : A Thirteen-Nations Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arrindell, W. A.; van Well, Sonja; Kolk, Annemarie M.; Barelds, Dick P. H.; Oei, Tian P. S.; Lau, Pui Yi

    It was hypothesized that societies that put greater emphasis on men being rigidly committed to culturally accepted models of masculinity (nations with high Hofstede MASculinity scores) would report higher mean national levels of masculine gender role stress (MGRS) than societies that emphasize such

  13. Workforce Diversity in Higher Education: Career Support Factors Influencing Ascendancy of African American Women to Senior-Level Positions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackstone, Tondelaya K.

    2011-01-01

    The focus of this study was how knowledge of the barriers to advancement for African American women (AAW) and key career support factors (KCSFs) influence the career advancement of African American women (AAW) to senior-level positions in higher education. The research method for this study consisted of the triangulation of evidence from multiple…

  14. Higher Reported Levels of Depression, Stress, and Anxiety Are Associated with Increased Endorsement of ADHD Symptoms by Postsecondary Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, Allyson G.; Alexander, Sandra J.; Armstrong, Irene T.

    2013-01-01

    This study examined the extent to which postsecondary students endorse symptoms of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and whether experienced level of stress, depression, or anxiety are associated with higher reporting of ADHD symptoms. Students attending a combined health and counseling service completed the Conners Adult ADHD Rating…

  15. Parental Level of Education: Associations with Psychological Well-Being, Academic Achievement and Reasons for Pursuing Higher Education in Adolescence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlechter, Melissa; Milevsky, Avidan

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of the current study is to determine the interconnection between parental level of education, psychological well-being, academic achievement and reasons for pursuing higher education in adolescents. Participants included 439 college freshmen from a mid-size state university in the northeastern USA. A survey, including indices of…

  16. A large-scale, higher-level, molecular phylogenetic study of the insect order Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higher-level relationships within the Lepidoptera, and particularly within the species-rich subclade Ditrysia, are generally not well understood, although recent studies have yielded progress. 483 taxa spanning 115 of 124 families were sampled for 19 protein-coding nuclear genes. Their aligned nucle...

  17. Explaining participation differentials in Dutch higher education : the impact of subjective success probabilities on level choice and field choice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tolsma, J.; Need, A.; Jong, U. de

    2010-01-01

    In this article we examine whether subjective estimates of success probabilities explain the effect of social origin, sex, and ethnicity on students’ choices between different school tracks in Dutch higher education. The educational options analysed differ in level (i.e. university versus

  18. Dengue-Immune Humans Have Higher Levels of Complement-Independent Enhancing Antibody than Complement-Dependent Neutralizing Antibody.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamanaka, Atsushi; Konishi, Eiji

    2017-09-25

    Dengue is the most important arboviral disease worldwide. We previously reported that most inhabitants of dengue-endemic countries who are naturally immune to the disease have infection-enhancing antibodies whose in vitro activity does not decrease in the presence of complement (complement-independent enhancing antibodies, or CiEAb). Here, we compared levels of CiEAb and complement-dependent neutralizing antibodies (CdNAb) in dengue-immune humans. A typical antibody dose-response pattern obtained in our assay system to measure the balance between neutralizing and enhancing antibodies showed both neutralizing and enhancing activities depending on serum dilution factor. The addition of complement to the assay system increased the activity of neutralizing antibodies at lower dilutions, indicating the presence of CdNAb. In contrast, similar dose-response curves were obtained with and without complement at higher dilutions, indicating higher levels of CiEAb than CdNAb. For experimental support for the higher CiEAb levels, a cocktail of mouse monoclonal antibodies against dengue virus type 1 was prepared. The antibody dose-response curves obtained in this assay, with or without complement, were similar to those obtained with human serum samples when a high proportion of D1-V-3H12 (an antibody exhibiting only enhancing activity and thus a model for CiEAb) was used in the cocktail. This study revealed higher-level induction of CiEAb than CdNAb in humans naturally infected with dengue viruses.

  19. Cross-Age Mentoring to Support A-Level Pupils' Transition into Higher Education and Undergraduate Students' Employability

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, Alana I.

    2014-01-01

    Two challenges identified for psychology higher education are supporting entry students' transition, and supporting graduates' transition into employment. The evaluation of the first phase of a cross-age mentoring action research project targeting these issues is presented; eight psychology undergraduates mentored 20 A-level psychology pupils in…

  20. Reading Comprehension, Working Memory and Higher-Level Language Skills in Children with SLI and/or Dyslexia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Anita M.-Y.; Ho, Connie S.-H.; Au, Terry K.-F.; McBride, Catherine; Ng, Ashley K.-H.; Yip, Lesley P.-W.; Lam, Catherine C.-C.

    2017-01-01

    This study examined (1) whether working memory and higher-level languages skills--inferencing and comprehension monitoring--accounted for individual differences among Chinese children in Chinese reading comprehension, after controlling for age, Chinese word reading and oral language skills, and (2) whether children with specific language…

  1. Higher serum levels of rheumatoid factor and anti-nuclear antibodies in helicobacter pylori-infected peptic ulcer patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jafarzadeh, Abdollah; Nemati, Maryam; Rezayati, Mohammad Taghi; Nabizadeh, Mansooreh; Ebrahimi, Medhi

    2013-07-01

    H. pylori infection has been associated with some autoimmune disorders. The aim of this study was to evaluate the serum concentrations of rheumatoid factor and anti-nuclear antibodies in H. pylori-infected peptic ulcer patients, H. pylori-infected asymptomatic carriers and a healthy control group. A Total of 100 H. pylori-infected peptic ulcer patients, 65 asymptomatic carriers and 30 healthy H. pylori-negative subjects (as a control group) were enrolled into study. Serum samples of participants tested for the levels of rheumatoid factor and anti-nuclear antibodies by use of ELISA. The mean serum levels of rheumatoid factor and anti-nuclear antibodies in peptic ulcer group was significantly higher in comparison to the control group (ppeptic ulcer patients and asymptomatic carriers groups regarding the mean serum levels of rheumatoid factor and anti-nuclear antibodies. The mean serum levels of rheumatoid factor in men with peptic ulcer was significantly higher compared to the group of healthy men (ppeptic ulcer patients or asymptomatic carriers groups, the mean serum levels of rheumatoid factor was higher than that in healthy women, but the differences were not statistically significant. Also, no significant differences were observed between men and women with peptic ulcer, asymptomatic carriers control groups based on the serum levels of anti-nuclear antibodies. The results showed higher serum levels of rheumatoid factor and anti-nuclear antibodies in H. pylori-infected patients with peptic ulcer disease which represent the H. pylori-related immune disturbance in these patients. Additional follow-up studies are necessary to clarify the clinical significance of these autoantibodies in patients with H. pylori infection.

  2. Higher Fasting Plasma Glucose Levels, within the Normal Range, are Associated with Decreased Processing Speed in High Functioning Young Elderly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raizes, Meytal; Elkana, Odelia; Franko, Motty; Ravona Springer, Ramit; Segev, Shlomo; Beeri, Michal Schnaider

    2016-01-01

    We explored the association of plasma glucose levels within the normal range with processing speed in high functioning young elderly, free of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). A sample of 41 participants (mean age = 64.7, SD = 10; glucose 94.5 mg/dL, SD = 9.3), were examined with a computerized cognitive battery. Hierarchical linear regression analysis showed that higher plasma glucose levels, albeit within the normal range (levels may have an impact on cognitive function.

  3. Artificial Reefs

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — An artificial reef is a human-made underwater structure, typically built to promote marine life in areas with a generally featureless bottom, control erosion, block...

  4. The effect of modifiable healthy practices on higher-level functional capacity decline among Japanese community dwellers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rei Otsuka

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to clarify the effects of the accumulation of 8 modifiable practices related to health, including smoking, alcohol drinking, physical activity, sleeping hours, body mass index, dietary diversity, ikigai (life worth living, and health checkup status, on higher-level functional capacity decline among Japanese community dwellers. Data were derived from the National Institute for Longevity Sciences - Longitudinal Study of Aging. Subjects comprised 1269 men and women aged 40 to 79 years at baseline (1997–2000 who participated in a follow-up postal survey (2013. Higher-level functional capacity was measured using the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology Index of Competence (total score and 3 subscales: instrumental self-maintenance, intellectual activity, and social role. The odds ratio (OR and 95% confidence interval (CI for a decline in higher-level functional capacity in the follow-up study according to the total number of healthy practices were analyzed using the lowest category as a reference. Multivariate adjusted ORs (95% CIs for the total score of higher-level functional capacity, which declined according to the total number of healthy practices (0–4, 5–6, 7–8 groups were 1.00 (reference, 0.63 (0.44–0.92, and 0.54 (0.31–0.94. For the score of social role decline, multivariate adjusted ORs (95% CIs were 1.00 (reference, 0.62 (0.40–0.97, and 0.46 (0.23–0.90, respectively (P for trend = 0.04. Having more modifiable healthy practices, especially in social roles, may protect against a decline in higher-level functional capacity among middle-aged and elderly community dwellers in Japan.

  5. The effect of modifiable healthy practices on higher-level functional capacity decline among Japanese community dwellers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otsuka, Rei; Nishita, Yukiko; Tange, Chikako; Tomida, Makiko; Kato, Yuki; Nakamoto, Mariko; Ando, Fujiko; Shimokata, Hiroshi; Suzuki, Takao

    2017-03-01

    This study aimed to clarify the effects of the accumulation of 8 modifiable practices related to health, including smoking, alcohol drinking, physical activity, sleeping hours, body mass index, dietary diversity, ikigai (life worth living), and health checkup status, on higher-level functional capacity decline among Japanese community dwellers. Data were derived from the National Institute for Longevity Sciences - Longitudinal Study of Aging. Subjects comprised 1269 men and women aged 40 to 79 years at baseline (1997-2000) who participated in a follow-up postal survey (2013). Higher-level functional capacity was measured using the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology Index of Competence (total score and 3 subscales: instrumental self-maintenance, intellectual activity, and social role). The odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) for a decline in higher-level functional capacity in the follow-up study according to the total number of healthy practices were analyzed using the lowest category as a reference. Multivariate adjusted ORs (95% CIs) for the total score of higher-level functional capacity, which declined according to the total number of healthy practices (0-4, 5-6, 7-8 groups) were 1.00 (reference), 0.63 (0.44-0.92), and 0.54 (0.31-0.94). For the score of social role decline, multivariate adjusted ORs (95% CIs) were 1.00 (reference), 0.62 (0.40-0.97), and 0.46 (0.23-0.90), respectively (P for trend = 0.04). Having more modifiable healthy practices, especially in social roles, may protect against a decline in higher-level functional capacity among middle-aged and elderly community dwellers in Japan.

  6. Health status among long-term breast cancer survivors suffering from higher levels of fatigue: a cross-sectional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Álvarez-Salvago, Francisco; Galiano-Castillo, Noelia; Arroyo-Morales, Manuel; Cruz-Fernández, Mayra; Lozano-Lozano, Mario; Cantarero-Villanueva, Irene

    2018-05-05

    The aims of this study were to evaluate the health status of long-term breast cancer survivors (LTBCS) suffering from higher levels of fatigue, to highlight their needs, and to establish the key points of intervention support programs. A cross-sectional observational study was conducted at the Sport and Health Joint University Institute (iMUDS) between September 2016 and July 2017 with 80 LTBCS that were classified into non-fatigued (≤ 3.9) or fatigued (≥ 4) according to the Piper Fatigue Scale (PFS) total score. The instruments used were the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Core 30 and its breast cancer (BC) module, the Visual Analog Scale (VAS), the Brief Pain Inventory (BPI), the Scale for Mood Assessment (EVEA), the International Fitness Scale (IFIS), and the Charlson Comorbidity Index. The analysis revealed that 41.2% of LTBCS were considered moderately fatigued and showed significantly higher levels for the categories of "nausea and vomiting" (P = .005), "pain," "dyspnea" and "insomnia" (P < .001), "appetite loss" (P = .002), "financial difficulties" (P = .010), "systemic therapy side effects" (P < .001), "breast symptoms" and "arm symptoms" (P = .002), and "upset by hair loss" (P = .016). In addition, LTBCS presented significantly higher levels of pain in the affected and non-affected arm, "sadness-depression." "anxiety," "anger/hostility" (All: P < .001), and lower general physical fitness (P < .001). The rest of the variables did not show significant differences. LTBCS suffering from higher levels of fatigue had lower QoL, higher level of pain, worse mood state, and lower physical fitness.

  7. Higher weight, lower education: a longitudinal association between adolescents' body mass index and their subsequent educational achievement level?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Junilla K; Kleinjan, Marloes; Engels, Rutger C M E; Fisher, Jennifer O; Hermans, Roel C J

    2014-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the association between adolescents' body mass index (BMI) z-scores and their subsequent level of schooling, extending previous longitudinal research by using objectively measured weight and height data. A longitudinal study with 3 study waves (1-year intervals) involving 1248 Dutch adolescents (49% girls; mean age = 13.7 years) at schools providing different educational levels was used to determine adolescents who moved and did not move to a lower educational level in the first year, or in the second year, and to examine whether this movement could be predicted by BMI z-scores (zBMI), after controlling for a large range of potential confounding factors. A total of 1164 Dutch adolescents continued in the same level of education, whereas 84 adolescents moved to a lower educational level (43 moved in the first and 41 in the second year). A higher zBMI significantly increased the risk of a general transition to a lower educational level, and of a transition in the first year, but not in the second year, after controlling for potential demographic, behavioral, and psychological confounds. Findings suggest that a higher zBMI during adolescence immediately lowers educational achievement level during general secondary education. © 2014, American School Health Association.

  8. Biomechanics of Hybrid Anterior Cervical Fusion and Artificial Disc Replacement in 3-Level Constructs: An In Vitro Investigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Zhenhua; Fogel, Guy R.; Pu, Ting; Gu, Hongsheng; Liu, Weiqiang

    2015-01-01

    Background The ideal surgical approach for cervical disk disease remains controversial, especially for multilevel cervical disease. The purpose of this study was to investigate the biomechanics of the cervical spine after 3-level hybrid surgery compared with 3-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). Material/Methods Eighteen human cadaveric spines (C2-T1) were evaluated under displacement-input protocol. After intact testing, a simulated hybrid construct or fusion construct was created between C3 to C6 and tested in the following 3 conditions: 3-level disc plate disc (3DPD), 3-level plate disc plate (3PDP), and 3-level plate (3P). Results Compared to intact, almost 65~80% of motion was successfully restricted at C3-C6 fusion levels (p0.05). 3PDP construct resulted in significant decrease of ROM at C3-C6 levels less than 3P (pbiomechanical advantages compared to fusion in normalizing motion. PMID:26529430

  9. Natural - synthetic - artificial!

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Peter E

    2010-01-01

    The terms "natural," "synthetic" and "artificial" are discussed in relation to synthetic and artificial chromosomes and genomes, synthetic and artificial cells and artificial life.......The terms "natural," "synthetic" and "artificial" are discussed in relation to synthetic and artificial chromosomes and genomes, synthetic and artificial cells and artificial life....

  10. Embodied artificial agents for understanding human social cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wykowska, Agnieszka; Chaminade, Thierry; Cheng, Gordon

    2016-05-05

    In this paper, we propose that experimental protocols involving artificial agents, in particular the embodied humanoid robots, provide insightful information regarding social cognitive mechanisms in the human brain. Using artificial agents allows for manipulation and control of various parameters of behaviour, appearance and expressiveness in one of the interaction partners (the artificial agent), and for examining effect of these parameters on the other interaction partner (the human). At the same time, using artificial agents means introducing the presence of artificial, yet human-like, systems into the human social sphere. This allows for testing in a controlled, but ecologically valid, manner human fundamental mechanisms of social cognition both at the behavioural and at the neural level. This paper will review existing literature that reports studies in which artificial embodied agents have been used to study social cognition and will address the question of whether various mechanisms of social cognition (ranging from lower- to higher-order cognitive processes) are evoked by artificial agents to the same extent as by natural agents, humans in particular. Increasing the understanding of how behavioural and neural mechanisms of social cognition respond to artificial anthropomorphic agents provides empirical answers to the conundrum 'What is a social agent?' © 2016 The Authors.

  11. Increased visfatin levels are associated with higher disease activity in anti-Jo-1-positive myositis patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hulejová, Hana; Kryštůfková, Olga; Mann, Heřman; Klein, Martin; Pavlíčková, Klára; Zámečník, Josef; Vencovský, Jiří; Šenolt, Ladislav

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate serum levels of visfatin in anti-Jo-1-positive myositis patients, its expression in muscle tissue and to investigate potential relationships between visfatin, B-cell activating factor of the TNF family (BAFF), disease activity and anti-Jo-1 autoantibody levels. Serum levels of visfatin and BAFF were measured in 38 anti-Jo-1 positive myositis patients and 35 healthy subjects. Disease activity was evaluated by myositis disease activity assessment tool (MYOACT) using visual analogue scales (VAS) and by serum muscle enzymes. Visfatin expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry in muscle tissue of myositis patients (n=10) and compared with non-inflammatory control muscle tissue samples from patients with myasthenia gravis (n=5). Serum visfatin and BAFF levels were significantly higher in myositis patients compared to healthy subjects and were associated with clinical muscle activity assessed by VAS. Only serum BAFF levels, but not visfatin levels, positively correlated with muscle enzyme concentrations and anti-Jo1 antibody levels. There was a positive correlation between visfatin and BAFF serum levels in myositis patients but a negative correlation was observed in healthy subjects. Visfatin expression was up-regulated in endomysial and perimysial inflammatory infiltrates of muscle tissue from myositis patients. Up-regulation of visfatin in myositis muscle tissue and an association between increased visfatin levels and muscle disease activity evaluated by MYOACT in anti-Jo-1 positive myositis patients could support possible role of visfatin in the pathogenesis of myositis.

  12. Does peer learning or higher levels of e-learning improve learning abilities? A randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Worm, Bjarne Skjødt; Jensen, Kenneth

    2013-01-01

    Background and aims The fast development of e-learning and social forums demands us to update our understanding of e-learning and peer learning. We aimed to investigate if higher, pre-defined levels of e-learning or social interaction in web forums improved students' learning ability. Methods One hundred and twenty Danish medical students were randomized to six groups all with 20 students (eCases level 1, eCases level 2, eCases level 2+, eTextbook level 1, eTextbook level 2, and eTextbook level 2+). All students participated in a pre-test, Group 1 participated in an interactive case-based e-learning program, while Group 2 was presented with textbook material electronically. The 2+ groups were able to discuss the material between themselves in a web forum. The subject was head injury and associated treatment and observation guidelines in the emergency room. Following the e-learning, all students completed a post-test. Pre- and post-tests both consisted of 25 questions randomly chosen from a pool of 50 different questions. Results All students concluded the study with comparable pre-test results. Students at Level 2 (in both groups) improved statistically significant compared to students at level 1 (p>0.05). There was no statistically significant difference between level 2 and level 2+. However, level 2+ was associated with statistically significant greater student's satisfaction than the rest of the students (p>0.05). Conclusions This study applies a new way of comparing different types of e-learning using a pre-defined level division and the possibility of peer learning. Our findings show that higher levels of e-learning does in fact provide better results when compared with the same type of e-learning at lower levels. While social interaction in web forums increase student satisfaction, learning ability does not seem to change. Both findings are relevant when designing new e-learning materials.

  13. Does peer learning or higher levels of e-learning improve learning abilities? A randomized controlled trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bjarne Skjødt Worm

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Background and aims : The fast development of e-learning and social forums demands us to update our understanding of e-learning and peer learning. We aimed to investigate if higher, pre-defined levels of e-learning or social interaction in web forums improved students’ learning ability. Methods : One hundred and twenty Danish medical students were randomized to six groups all with 20 students (eCases level 1, eCases level 2, eCases level 2+, eTextbook level 1, eTextbook level 2, and eTextbook level 2+. All students participated in a pre-test, Group 1 participated in an interactive case-based e-learning program, while Group 2 was presented with textbook material electronically. The 2+ groups were able to discuss the material between themselves in a web forum. The subject was head injury and associated treatment and observation guidelines in the emergency room. Following the e-learning, all students completed a post-test. Pre- and post-tests both consisted of 25 questions randomly chosen from a pool of 50 different questions. Results : All students concluded the study with comparable pre-test results. Students at Level 2 (in both groups improved statistically significant compared to students at level 1 (p>0.05. There was no statistically significant difference between level 2 and level 2+. However, level 2+ was associated with statistically significant greater student's satisfaction than the rest of the students (p>0.05. Conclusions : This study applies a new way of comparing different types of e-learning using a pre-defined level division and the possibility of peer learning. Our findings show that higher levels of e-learning does in fact provide better results when compared with the same type of e-learning at lower levels. While social interaction in web forums increase student satisfaction, learning ability does not seem to change. Both findings are relevant when designing new e-learning materials.

  14. Does peer learning or higher levels of e-learning improve learning abilities? A randomized controlled trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Worm, Bjarne Skjødt; Jensen, Kenneth

    2013-01-01

    Background and aims The fast development of e-learning and social forums demands us to update our understanding of e-learning and peer learning. We aimed to investigate if higher, pre-defined levels of e-learning or social interaction in web forums improved students’ learning ability. Methods One hundred and twenty Danish medical students were randomized to six groups all with 20 students (eCases level 1, eCases level 2, eCases level 2+, eTextbook level 1, eTextbook level 2, and eTextbook level 2+). All students participated in a pre-test, Group 1 participated in an interactive case-based e-learning program, while Group 2 was presented with textbook material electronically. The 2+ groups were able to discuss the material between themselves in a web forum. The subject was head injury and associated treatment and observation guidelines in the emergency room. Following the e-learning, all students completed a post-test. Pre- and post-tests both consisted of 25 questions randomly chosen from a pool of 50 different questions. Results All students concluded the study with comparable pre-test results. Students at Level 2 (in both groups) improved statistically significant compared to students at level 1 (p>0.05). There was no statistically significant difference between level 2 and level 2+. However, level 2+ was associated with statistically significant greater student's satisfaction than the rest of the students (p>0.05). Conclusions This study applies a new way of comparing different types of e-learning using a pre-defined level division and the possibility of peer learning. Our findings show that higher levels of e-learning does in fact provide better results when compared with the same type of e-learning at lower levels. While social interaction in web forums increase student satisfaction, learning ability does not seem to change. Both findings are relevant when designing new e-learning materials. PMID:24229729

  15. Pakistanis living in Oslo have lower serum 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D levels but higher serum ionized calcium levels compared with ethnic Norwegians. The Oslo Health Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holvik, Kristin; Meyer, Haakon E; Søgaard, Anne Johanne; Haug, Egil; Falch, Jan A

    2007-01-01

    Background Persons of Pakistani origin living in Oslo have a much higher prevalence of vitamin D deficiency and secondary hyperparathyroidism but similar bone mineral density compared with ethnic Norwegians. Our objective was to investigate whether Pakistani immigrants living in Oslo have an altered vitamin D metabolism by means of compensatory higher serum levels of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (s-1,25(OH)2D) compared with ethnic Norwegians; and whether serum levels of ionized calcium (s-Ca2+) differ between Pakistanis and Norwegians. Methods In a cross-sectional, population-based study venous serum samples were drawn from 94 Pakistani men and 67 Pakistani women aged 30–60 years, and 290 Norwegian men and 270 Norwegian women aged 45–60 years; in total 721 subjects. Results Pakistanis had lower s-1,25(OH)2D compared with Norwegians (p Oslo with low vitamin D status and secondary hyperparathyroidism have lower s-1,25(OH)2D compared with ethnic Norwegians. However, the Pakistanis have higher s-Ca2+. The cause of the higher s-Ca2+ in Pakistanis in spite of their higher iPTH remains unclear. PMID:17945003

  16. Different Levels in Orexin Concentrations and Risk Factors Associated with Higher Orexin Levels: Comparison between Detoxified Opiate and Methamphetamine Addicts in 5 Chinese Cities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haoran Zhang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This study sought to explore the degree of orexin levels in Chinese opiate and methamphetamine addicts and the differences between them. The cross-sectional study was conducted among detoxified drug addicts from Mandatory Detoxification Center (MDC in five Chinese cities. Orexin levels were assayed with radioimmunoassay (RIA. Mann-Whitney U test and Kruskal-Wallis test were used to detect differences across groups, and logistic regression was used to explore the association between orexin levels and characteristics of demographic and drug abuse. Between November 2009 and January 2011, 285 opiates addicts, 112 methamphetamine addicts, and 79 healthy controls were enrolled. At drug withdrawal period, both opiate and methamphetamine addicts had lower median orexin levels than controls, and median orexin levels in opiate addicts were higher than those in methamphetamine addicts (all above P<0.05. Adjusted odds of the above median concentration of orexin were higher for injection than “chasing the dragon” (AOR = 3.1, 95% CI = 1.2–7.9. No significant factors associated with orexin levels of methamphetamine addicts were found. Development of intervention method on orexin system by different administration routes especially for injected opiate addicts at detoxification phase may be significant and was welcome.

  17. Adult age differences in prospective memory in the laboratory: are they related to higher stress levels in the elderly?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ihle, Andreas; Kliegel, Matthias; Hering, Alexandra; Ballhausen, Nicola; Lagner, Prune; Benusch, Julia; Cichon, Anja; Zergiebel, Annekathrin; Oris, Michel; Schnitzspahn, Katharina M

    2014-01-01

    To explain age deficits found in laboratory-based prospective memory (PM) tasks, it has recently been suggested that the testing situation per se may be more stressful for older adults, thereby impairing their performance. To test this assumption, subjective and physiological stress levels were assessed at several times during the experiment in 33 younger and 29 older adults. In addition, half of participants were randomized in a condition where they completed a relaxation intervention before performing a time-based PM task. Results confirmed the age deficit in laboratory PM. Subjective and physiological stress levels showed no age difference and no detrimental association with PM. The intervention successfully reduced stress levels in both age groups but had no effect on PM or the age deficit. In conclusion, data suggest that age deficits usually observed in laboratory PM may not be due to higher stress levels in the older adults.

  18. Pressure pain threshold and β-endorphins plasma level are higher in lean polycystic ovary syndrome women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiałka, Marta; Milewicz, Tomasz; Mrozińska, Sandra; Rogatko, Iwona; Sztefko, Krystyna; Majewska, Renata

    2017-12-01

    Despite some evidence that indicates that the evolution of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is related to the activity of the endogenous opioid system, and that concentration of plasma β-endorphin levels can increase pain threshold, there are no studies which evaluate pressure pain threshold in the PCOS women population. In 48 lean women with PCOS and 38 lean women without this disorder plasma β-endorphins and PPT were measured. The β-endorphins level was higher in the PCOS group compared to the controls (15.28±2.49 pg/mL vs. 6.33±1.71 pg/mL, PPCOS group PPTs measured on deltoid and trapezius muscles were higher compared to the controls (9.33±1.3 kg/cm² vs. 5.19±0.57 kg/cm², PPCOS group. Increase in β-endorphin level of 1 pg/mL was associated with increase of PPT value on deltoid muscle of 0.23 kg/cm² (R=0.632, P=0.011) and of 0.18 kg/cm² on trapezius muscle (R=0.588, P=0.037). There were no correlations between testosterone level and PPT in PCOS group. β-endorphin serum level as well as PPT are higher in lean PCOS group than in controls. We found correlations between β-endorphin levels and PPT in the PCOS group. It may suggest the role of endogenous opioids in the pathogenesis of PCOS and also that the increases in circulating plasma β-endorphins concentration can increases PPT in this group.

  19. Level-Ground Walking for 3D Quasi-Passive Walker with Flat Feet - Lateral-plane Input using McKibben-Type Artificial Muscle -

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yamamoto Akihiro

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Currently, many bipedal robots have been proposed to realize the high energy efficiency walking. The passive dynamic walking does not require control input. Generally, a foot of passive dynamic walking robot is an arc foot. In this paper, it is intended to establish a control method and control mechanism to achieve energy efficient and stable gate. Therefore, we developed 3D quasi-passive walker with flat feet driven by an antagonistic pneumatic artificial muscle. An antagonistic mechanism is constituted by a pair of McKibben muscle. And an antagonistic pneumatic system is used as joint actuators of linkage mechanisms which control the torque, joint stiffness and position simultaneously. Finally, this report shows that the 3D quasi-passive walking in the level ground can realize by the swinging (simple input of the frontal direction, and the stride of the robot is proportional to lateral-plane input.

  20. Adrenocortical Production Is Associated with Higher Levels of Luteinizing Hormone in Nonobese Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana Tock

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. Insulin resistance (IR and ovarian and adrenal hyperandrogenism are a common finding in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS. The aim of the present study was to access possible differences in insulin resistance, gonadotropins, and androgens production in obese and nonobese PCOS women. Study Design. We studied 37 PCOS women (16 nonobese and 21 obese and 18 nonobese controls. Fasting glucose, insulin, androgens, and gonadotropins levels were determined. Salivary cortisol was measured basal and in the morning after dexamethasone (DEX 0.25 mg. Results. Nonobese PCOS women showed higher basal salivary cortisol and serum dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate and luteinizing hormone (LH levels than controls and obese PCOS. These hormones levels did not differ between the obese and control groups. After DEX administration no differences were found between the three groups. In PCOS women, salivary cortisol levels showed negative correlation with BMI (r=-0.52; P=0.001 and insulin (r=-0.47; P=0.003 and positive correlation with LH (r=0.40; P=0.016. Conclusion. Our results show an increased adrenocortical production in nonobese PCOS women, not related to IR and associated with a normal hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal suppression. Higher LH levels might be involved in this event.

  1. A higher level of education amplifies the inverse association between income and disability in the Spanish elderly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abellán, Antonio; Rodríguez-Laso, Ángel; Pujol, Rogelio; Barrios, Laura

    2015-12-01

    This paper aims to estimate if the education level modifies the association of income with disability prevalence in the elderly. Education can have a confounding effect on income or interact with it as a health determinant. It is important to analyze the relationship between socio-economic status and disability in older people, because it helps to better understand health inequalities and organize appropriate social policies. The study is based on the Survey on Disability, Personal Autonomy and Dependency Situations (Spanish National Statistics Institute). Binary logistic regression models are adjusted (bivariate, adjusted for gender and age, with all variables and with the interaction between income and education levels). A bad adjustment of the model is detected and a scobit link is added, which helps to differentiate disabled and non-disabled individuals better. People with difficulty in carrying out activities of daily living are much older, frequently women and with low education and income levels. The significant interaction between education level and income means that the odds of being disabled is 43% less in people of high income compared with people of low income if they are well educated, while it is only 21%, among those with low education. A higher education level amplifies significantly the inverse association between income and disability in the Spanish elderly, what suggests that those with higher education will profit more than those with lower education from universal economic benefits policies aimed at the disabled, increasing health inequalities between groups.

  2. Level of pancreatic and gastrointestinal hormones in blood of patients with stomach neoplasm in complex treatment using artificial hyperglycemia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zen'kovich, G.A.; Tsyrus', T.P.; Ermilova, N.I.

    1988-01-01

    It is shown that performing of hyperglycemia courses results in some breakage of tissue tolerance to glucose, decrease of active plase of secreted insulin. No other functional violations were revealed in pancreas. Insulin-producing function of pancreas is reserved. Glucagon and gastrin level considerably decreases at the end of each course of hyperglycemia. Somatostation level in the blood of the examined patients doesn't differ and was in the limits of physiological standard. 4 refs.; 1 tab

  3. Analyzing of the self reported ICT literacy level of Slovakian and Serbian Students in the higher education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kiss Gabor

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The students generally use technology for communication in the European Union and outside of the Union. First of all we have to see in this research the ICT knowledge level of the students in the higher education to make decision about the application and retraining methods. It is important to know can we find any difference in ICT literacy between the Slovakian and the Serbian students to see how long is the way to finish the ICT revolution in these countries. On the other hand is it important to see which topic need more attention from the teachers in the high school to give a good knowledge for the student before they go in the higher education. We measured the ICT literacy level with a tool consisting of 15 items (Likert scaled. The data analysis was performed with SPSS software using descriptive statistics and Mann-Whitney test.

  4. Fucoidan cytotoxicity against human breast cancer T47D cell line increases with higher level of sulfate ester group

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saepudin, Endang; Alfita Qosthalani, Fildzah; Sinurat, Ellya

    2018-01-01

    The anticancer activity of different sulfate ester group content in different molecular weight was examined. The anticancer activity was achieved in vitro on human breast cancer T47D cell line. Fucoidan with lower molecular weight (5.79 kDa) tends to have lower sulfate ester group content (8.69%) and resulted in higher IC50 value (184.22 μg/mL). While fucoidan with higher molecular weight (785.12 kDa) tends to have higher sulfate level (18.63%) and achieved lower IC50 value (75.69 μg/mL). The result showed that in order to maintain fucoidan cytotoxic activity against human breast cancer T47D cell line, the sulfate content should be remain high. Keywords: fucoidan, sulfate ester group, human breast cancer

  5. Artificial Intelligence and Moral intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Laura Pana

    2008-01-01

    We discuss the thesis that the implementation of a moral code in the behaviour of artificial intelligent systems needs a specific form of human and artificial intelligence, not just an abstract intelligence. We present intelligence as a system with an internal structure and the structural levels of the moral system, as well as certain characteristics of artificial intelligent agents which can/must be treated as 1- individual entities (with a complex, specialized, autonomous or selfdetermined,...

  6. Association between sarcopenia and higher-level functional capacity in daily living in community-dwelling elderly subjects in Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanimoto, Yoshimi; Watanabe, Misuzu; Sun, Wei; Sugiura, Yumiko; Tsuda, Yuko; Kimura, Motoshi; Hayashida, Itsushi; Kusabiraki, Toshiyuki; Kono, Koichi

    2012-01-01

    This study aimed to determine the association between sarcopenia, defined by muscle mass, muscle strength, and physical performance, and higher-level functional capacity in community-dwelling Japanese elderly people. Subjects were 1158 elderly, community-dwelling Japanese people aged 65 or older. We used bioelectrical impedance analysis to measure muscle mass, grip strength to measure muscle strength, and usual walking speed to measure physical performance. Sarcopenia was characterized by low muscle mass, plus low muscle strength or low physical performance. Subjects without low muscle mass, low muscle strength, and low physical performance were classified as "normal." Examination of higher-level functional capacity was performed using the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology Index of Competence (TMIG-IC). The TMIG-IC is a 13-item questionnaire completed by the subject; it contains five questions on self-maintenance and four questions each on intellectual activity and social role. Sarcopenia was identified in 11.3% and 10.7% of men and women, respectively. The percentage of disability for instrumental activities of daily living (IADL) was 39.0% in men with sarcopenia and 30.6% in women with sarcopenia. After adjustment for age, in men, sarcopenia was significantly associated with IADL disability compared with intermediate and normal subjects. In women, sarcopenia was significantly associated with every subscale of the TMIG-IC disability compared with intermediate and normal subjects. This study revealed that sarcopenia, defined by muscle mass, muscle strength, and physical performance, had a significant association with disability in higher-level functional capacity in elderly Japanese subjects. Interventions to prevent sarcopenia may prevent higher-level functional disability among elderly people. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Cross-age mentoring to support A-level pupils’ transition into Higher Education and undergraduate students’ employability

    OpenAIRE

    James, Alana I.

    2014-01-01

    Two challenges identified for psychology higher education are supporting entry students’ transition, and supporting graduates’ transition into employment. The evaluation of the first phase of a cross-age mentoring action research project targeting these issues is presented; eight psychology undergraduates mentored 20 A-level psychology pupils in two schools. Mentors showed significant increases in two of nine psychological literacies, in self-efficacy but not self-esteem, were highly satisfie...

  8. A gross anatomy flipped classroom effects performance, retention, and higher-level thinking in lower performing students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, Leslie J

    2018-01-22

    A flipped classroom is a growing pedagogy in higher education. Many research studies on the flipped classroom have focused on student outcomes, with the results being positive or inconclusive. A few studies have analyzed confounding variables, such as student's previous achievement, or the impact of a flipped classroom on long-term retention and knowledge transfer. In the present study, students in a Doctor of Physical Therapy program in a traditional style lecture of gross anatomy (n = 105) were compared to similar students in a flipped classroom (n = 112). Overall, students in the flipped anatomy classroom had an increase in semester average grades (P = 0.01) and performance on higher-level analytical questions (P flipped anatomy classroom performing at a higher level in kinesiology (P flipped anatomy class, outperformed their traditional anatomy class counterparts in anatomy semester grades (P flipped classroom may benefit lower performing student's knowledge acquisition and transfer to a greater degree than higher performing students. Future studies should explore the underlying reasons for improvement in lower performing students. Anat Sci Educ. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists.

  9. The effects of artificial recharge on groundwater levels and water quality in the west hydrogeologic unit of the Warren subbasin, San Bernardino County, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamos, Christina L.; Martin, Peter; Everett, Rhett; Izbicki, John A.

    2013-01-01

    Between the late 1940s and 1994, groundwater levels in the Warren subbasin, California, declined by as much as 300 feet because pumping exceeded sparse natural recharge. In response, the local water district, Hi-Desert Water District, implemented an artificial-recharge program in early 1995 using imported water from the California State Water Project. Subsequently, the water table rose by as much as 250 feet; however, a study done by the U.S. Geological Survey found that the rising water table entrained high-nitrate septic effluent, which caused nitrate (as nitrogen) concentrations in some wells to increase to more than the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency maximum contaminant level of 10 milligrams per liter.. A new artificial-recharge site (site 3) was constructed in 2006 and this study, which started in 2004, was done to address concerns about the possible migration of nitrates in the unsaturated zone. The objectives of this study were to: (1) characterize the hydraulic, chemical, and microbiological properties of the unsaturated zone; (2) monitor changes in water levels and water quality in response to the artificial-recharge program at site 3; (3) determine if nitrates from septic effluent infiltrated through the unsaturated zone to the water table; (4) determine the potential for nitrates within the unsaturated zone to mobilize and contaminate the groundwater as the water table rises in response to artificial recharge; and (5) determine the presence and amount of dissolved organic carbon because of its potential to react with disinfection byproducts during the treatment of water for public use. Two monitoring sites were installed and instrumented with heat-dissipation probes, advanced tensiometers, suction-cup lysimeters, and wells so that the arrival and effects of recharging water from the State Water Project through the 250 to 425 foot-thick unsaturated zone and groundwater system could be closely observed. Monitoring site YVUZ-1 was located between two

  10. Remission of depression following electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is associated with higher levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freire, Thiago Fernando Vasconcelos; Fleck, Marcelo Pio de Almeida; da Rocha, Neusa Sica

    2016-03-01

    Research on the association between electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and increased brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels has produced conflicting result. There have been few studies which have evaluated BDNF levels in clinical contexts where there was remission following treatment. The objective of this study was to investigate whether remission of depression following ECT is associated with changes in BDNF levels. Adult inpatients in a psychiatric unit were invited to participate in this naturalistic study. Diagnoses were made using the Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI) and symptoms were evaluated at admission and discharge using the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HDRS-17). Thirty-one patients who received a diagnosis of depression and were subjected to ECT were included retrospectively. Clinical remission was defined as a score of less than eight on the HDRS-17 at discharge. Serum BDNF levels were measured in blood samples collected at admission and discharge with a commercial kit used in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions. Subjects HDRS-17 scores improved following ECT (t = 13.29; p = 0.00). A generalized estimating equation (GEE) model revealed a remission × time interaction with BDNF levels as a dependent variable in a Wald chi-square test [Wald χ(2) = 5.98; p = 0.01]. A post hoc Bonferroni test revealed that non-remitters had lower BDNF levels at admission than remitters (p = 0.03), but there was no difference at discharge (p = 0.16). ECT remitters had higher serum BDNF levels at admission and the level did not vary during treatment. ECT non-remitters had lower serum BDNF levels at admission, but levels increased during treatment and were similar to those of ECT remitters at discharge. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Artificial sweeteners

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Raben, Anne Birgitte; Richelsen, Bjørn

    2012-01-01

    Artificial sweeteners can be a helpful tool to reduce energy intake and body weight and thereby risk for diabetes and cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Considering the prevailing diabesity (obesity and diabetes) epidemic, this can, therefore, be an important alternative to natural, calorie-containin......Artificial sweeteners can be a helpful tool to reduce energy intake and body weight and thereby risk for diabetes and cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Considering the prevailing diabesity (obesity and diabetes) epidemic, this can, therefore, be an important alternative to natural, calorie......-containing sweeteners. The purpose of this review is to summarize the current evidence on the effect of artificial sweeteners on body weight, appetite, and risk markers for diabetes and CVD in humans....

  12. Artificial Intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Warwick, Kevin

    2011-01-01

    if AI is outside your field, or you know something of the subject and would like to know more then Artificial Intelligence: The Basics is a brilliant primer.' - Nick Smith, Engineering and Technology Magazine November 2011 Artificial Intelligence: The Basics is a concise and cutting-edge introduction to the fast moving world of AI. The author Kevin Warwick, a pioneer in the field, examines issues of what it means to be man or machine and looks at advances in robotics which have blurred the boundaries. Topics covered include: how intelligence can be defined whether machines can 'think' sensory

  13. Artificial intelligence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perret-Galix, D.

    1992-01-01

    A vivid example of the growing need for frontier physics experiments to make use of frontier technology is in the field of artificial intelligence and related themes. This was reflected in the second international workshop on 'Software Engineering, Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems in High Energy and Nuclear Physics' which took place from 13-18 January at France Telecom's Agelonde site at La Londe des Maures, Provence. It was the second in a series, the first having been held at Lyon in 1990

  14. The association between parity, infant gender, higher level of paternal education and preterm birth in Pakistan: a cohort study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaikh Kiran

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background High rates of antenatal depression and preterm birth have been reported in Pakistan. Self reported maternal stress and depression have been associated with preterm birth; however findings are inconsistent. Cortisol is a biological marker of stress and depression, and its measurement may assist in understanding the influence of self reported maternal stress and depression on preterm birth. Methods In a prospective cohort study pregnant women between 28 to 30 weeks of gestation from the Aga Khan Hospital for Women and Children completed the A-Z Stress Scale and the Centre for Epidemiology Studies Depression Scale to assess stress and depression respectively, and had a blood cortisol level drawn. Women were followed up after delivery to determine birth outcomes. Correlation coefficients and Wilcoxon rank sum test was used to assess relationship between preterm birth, stress, depression and cortisol. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine the key factors predictive of preterm birth. Results 132 pregnant women participated of whom 125 pregnant women had both questionnaire and cortisol level data and an additional seven had questionnaire data only. Almost 20% of pregnant women (19·7%, 95% CI 13·3-27·5 experienced a high level of stress and nearly twice as many (40·9%, 95% CI 32·4-49·8% experienced depressive symptoms. The median of cortisol level was 27·40 ug/dl (IQR 22·5-34·2. The preterm birth rate was 11·4% (95% CI 6·5-18. There was no relationship between cortisol values and stress scale or depression. There was a significant positive relationship between maternal depression and stress. Preterm birth was associated with higher parity, past delivery of a male infant, and higher levels of paternal education. Insufficient numbers of preterm births were available to warrant the development of a multivariable logistic regression model. Conclusions Preterm birth was associated with higher parity, past delivery

  15. The association between parity, infant gender, higher level of paternal education and preterm birth in Pakistan: a cohort study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaikh, Kiran; Premji, Shahirose S; Rose, Marianne S; Kazi, Ambreen; Khowaja, Shaneela; Tough, Suzanne

    2011-11-02

    High rates of antenatal depression and preterm birth have been reported in Pakistan. Self reported maternal stress and depression have been associated with preterm birth; however findings are inconsistent. Cortisol is a biological marker of stress and depression, and its measurement may assist in understanding the influence of self reported maternal stress and depression on preterm birth. In a prospective cohort study pregnant women between 28 to 30 weeks of gestation from the Aga Khan Hospital for Women and Children completed the A-Z Stress Scale and the Centre for Epidemiology Studies Depression Scale to assess stress and depression respectively, and had a blood cortisol level drawn. Women were followed up after delivery to determine birth outcomes. Correlation coefficients and Wilcoxon rank sum test was used to assess relationship between preterm birth, stress, depression and cortisol. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine the key factors predictive of preterm birth. 132 pregnant women participated of whom 125 pregnant women had both questionnaire and cortisol level data and an additional seven had questionnaire data only. Almost 20% of pregnant women (19·7%, 95% CI 13·3-27·5) experienced a high level of stress and nearly twice as many (40·9%, 95% CI 32·4-49·8%) experienced depressive symptoms. The median of cortisol level was 27·40 ug/dl (IQR 22·5-34·2). The preterm birth rate was 11·4% (95% CI 6·5-18). There was no relationship between cortisol values and stress scale or depression. There was a significant positive relationship between maternal depression and stress. Preterm birth was associated with higher parity, past delivery of a male infant, and higher levels of paternal education. Insufficient numbers of preterm births were available to warrant the development of a multivariable logistic regression model. Preterm birth was associated with higher parity, past delivery of a male infant, and higher levels of paternal education. There

  16. Molecular responses during cadmium-induced stress in Daphnia magna: Integration of differential gene expression with higher-level effects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Soetaert, Anneleen [Department of Biology, Laboratory for Ecophysiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology, University of Antwerp, Groenenborgerlaan 171, B-2020 Antwerp (Belgium)]. E-mail: anneleen.soetaert@ua.ac.be; Vandenbrouck, Tine [Department of Biology, Laboratory for Ecophysiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology, University of Antwerp, Groenenborgerlaan 171, B-2020 Antwerp (Belgium); Ven, Karlijn van der [Department of Biology, Laboratory for Ecophysiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology, University of Antwerp, Groenenborgerlaan 171, B-2020 Antwerp (Belgium); Maras, Marleen [Department of Biology, Laboratory for Ecophysiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology, University of Antwerp, Groenenborgerlaan 171, B-2020 Antwerp (Belgium); Remortel, Piet van [Department of Mathematics and Informatics, Intelligent Systems Laboratory, University of Antwerp, Middelheimlaan 1, B-2020 Antwerp (Belgium); Blust, Ronny [Department of Biology, Laboratory for Ecophysiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology, University of Antwerp, Groenenborgerlaan 171, B-2020 Antwerp (Belgium); Coen, Wim M. de [Department of Biology, Laboratory for Ecophysiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology, University of Antwerp, Groenenborgerlaan 171, B-2020 Antwerp (Belgium)

    2007-07-20

    DNA microarrays offer great potential in revealing insight into mechanistic toxicity of contaminants. The aim of the present study was (i) to gain insight in concentration- and time-dependent cadmium-induced molecular responses by using a customized Daphnia magna microarray, and (ii) to compare the gene expression profiles with effects at higher levels of biological organization (e.g. total energy budget and growth). Daphnids were exposed to three cadmium concentrations (nominal value of 10, 50, 100 {mu}g/l) for two time intervals (48 and 96 h). In general, dynamic expression patterns were obtained with a clear increase of gene expression changes at higher concentrations and longer exposure duration. Microarray analysis revealed cadmium affected molecular pathways associated with processes such as digestion, oxygen transport, cuticula metabolism and embryo development. These effects were compared with higher-level effects (energy budgets and growth). For instance, next to reduced energy budgets due to a decline in lipid, carbohydrate and protein content, we found an up-regulated expression of genes related to digestive processes (e.g. {alpha}-esterase, cellulase, {alpha}-amylase). Furthermore, cadmium affected the expression of genes coding for proteins involved in molecular pathways associated with immune response, stress response, cell adhesion, visual perception and signal transduction in the present study.

  17. Comparison of artificial digestion and Baermann's methods for detection of Trichinella spiralis pre-encapsulated larvae in muscles with low-level infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Peng; Wang, Zhong-Quan; Cui, Jing; Zhang, Xi

    2012-01-01

    Artificial digestion method is widely used for the detection of Trichinella larvae (mainly the mature larvae, e.g., encapsulated larvae in encapsulated Trichinella) in meat. The previous studies demonstrated that Trichinella spiralis pre-encapsulated larvae (PEL) at 14-18 days postinfection (dpi) had the infectivity to new hosts. However, to our knowledge, there is no report on the detection methods of PEL in meat. The purpose of this study was to compare the efficiency of artificial digestion and Baermann's methods for detection of T. spiralis PEL in meat, and to test the factors affecting the sensitivity of the two methods. Forty-five male Kunming mice were randomly divided into 3 groups (15 mice per group), and each group of mice was orally inoculated with 20, 10, or 5 muscle larvae of T. spiralis, respectively. All infected mice were slaughtered at 18 dpi, and the muscles were minced. The digestion method that was recommended by International Commission on Trichinellosis and Baermann's method were used to detect the PEL in the infected mice. The detection rate of PEL in both mice infected with 20 muscle larvae by digestion and Baermann's method was 100% (15/15); the detection rates of PEL in mice infected with 10 larvae by the two methods just mentioned were 93.33% (14/15) and 100% (15/15), respectively; when the mice infected with 5 larvae were tested, the different detection rate of PEL was achieved by using digestion method (63.33%) and Baermann's method (100%). Additionally, the number of PEL collected from the mice infected with 20, 10, or 5 larvae by Baermann's method was greater than that by digestion methods. The mortality of PEL increased along with the prolongation of digestion duration, because the PEL were not resistant to enzymatic digestion. The results revealed that the Baermann's method is superior to the digestion methods for detection of T. spiralis PEL in muscle samples with low-level infections.

  18. Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wash, Darrel Patrick

    1989-01-01

    Making a machine seem intelligent is not easy. As a consequence, demand has been rising for computer professionals skilled in artificial intelligence and is likely to continue to go up. These workers develop expert systems and solve the mysteries of machine vision, natural language processing, and neural networks. (Editor)

  19. EFFECTS OF HIGHER LEVELS OF CHROMIUM AND COPPER ON SOME HAEMATOLOGICAL PARAMETERS AND SERUM PROTEINS IN BROILERS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Tariq Javed, F, Ahmad. N, Z, Rafique1 and M, Bashir

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Effects of higher levels of chromium alone and in combination with copper were investigated in broiler chicks divided into seven equal groups viz. A, B, C, D, E, F and G. Group G served as control receiving no treatment. Groups A, B and F received chromium chloride at the rate of 2 g/kg and nicotinic acid 150 mg/kg feed while C, D and F received chromium chloride 8 g/kg and nicotinic acid 150mg/kg. Broilers of groups A and C received copper sulfate at the rate of 200 mg/kg while groups Band D 400 mg/kg feed. Haematological parameters studied revealed non-significant difference between treatment groups and control in haemoglobin concentration and total erythrocyte counts. However, only at 4th week, lower PCV was observed in birds fed higher levels of chromium chloride alone. Increase in TLC was observed in birds fed low chromium alone or' with low levels of copper. Results of serum proteins including total protein, albumin and globulin during first three weeks showed significantly or relatively lower values in treatment groups than control. Serum globulins generally revealed non-significant difference between treatment groups and control.

  20. Cellular energy allocation in zebra mussels exposed along a pollution gradient: linking cellular effects to higher levels of biological organization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smolders, R.; Bervoets, L.; Coen, W. de; Blust, R.

    2004-01-01

    Organisms exposed to suboptimal environments incur a cost of dealing with stress in terms of metabolic resources. The total amount of energy available for maintenance, growth and reproduction, based on the biochemical analysis of the energy budget, may provide a sensitive measure of stress in an organism. While the concept is clear, linking cellular or biochemical responses to the individual and population or community level remains difficult. The aim of this study was to validate, under field conditions, using cellular energy budgets [i.e. changes in glycogen-, lipid- and protein-content and mitochondrial electron transport system (ETS)] as an ecologically relevant measurement of stress by comparing these responses to physiological and organismal endpoints. Therefore, a 28-day in situ bioassay with zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) was performed in an effluent-dominated stream. Five locations were selected along the pollution gradient and compared with a nearby (reference) site. Cellular Energy Allocation (CEA) served as a biomarker of cellular energetics, while Scope for Growth (SFG) indicated effects on a physiological level and Tissue Condition Index and wet tissue weight/dry tissue weight ratio were used as endpoints of organismal effects. Results indicated that energy budgets at a cellular level of biological organization provided the fastest and most sensitive response and energy budgets are a relevant currency to extrapolate cellular effects to higher levels of biological organization within the exposed mussels. - Exposure of zebra mussels along a pollution gradient has adverse effects on the cellular energy allocation, and results can be linked with higher levels of biological organization

  1. Cellular energy allocation in zebra mussels exposed along a pollution gradient: linking cellular effects to higher levels of biological organization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smolders, R.; Bervoets, L.; Coen, W. de; Blust, R

    2004-05-01

    Organisms exposed to suboptimal environments incur a cost of dealing with stress in terms of metabolic resources. The total amount of energy available for maintenance, growth and reproduction, based on the biochemical analysis of the energy budget, may provide a sensitive measure of stress in an organism. While the concept is clear, linking cellular or biochemical responses to the individual and population or community level remains difficult. The aim of this study was to validate, under field conditions, using cellular energy budgets [i.e. changes in glycogen-, lipid- and protein-content and mitochondrial electron transport system (ETS)] as an ecologically relevant measurement of stress by comparing these responses to physiological and organismal endpoints. Therefore, a 28-day in situ bioassay with zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) was performed in an effluent-dominated stream. Five locations were selected along the pollution gradient and compared with a nearby (reference) site. Cellular Energy Allocation (CEA) served as a biomarker of cellular energetics, while Scope for Growth (SFG) indicated effects on a physiological level and Tissue Condition Index and wet tissue weight/dry tissue weight ratio were used as endpoints of organismal effects. Results indicated that energy budgets at a cellular level of biological organization provided the fastest and most sensitive response and energy budgets are a relevant currency to extrapolate cellular effects to higher levels of biological organization within the exposed mussels. - Exposure of zebra mussels along a pollution gradient has adverse effects on the cellular energy allocation, and results can be linked with higher levels of biological organization.

  2. Water level effect on herbaceous plant assemblages at an artificial reservoir-Lago Azul State Park, Southern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. C. Souza

    Full Text Available This study presents the effect of water level variation on the assemblages of herbaceous species in Mourão I Reservoir, Lago Azul State Park, Southern Brazil. The structure and distribution of populations was examined in February (dry period and April (rainy period, 2011, in two transects. These transects started at the forest edge towards the center of the lake. The end of the transect coincided with the end of the plants within the lake. On every two meters along of the transects we sampled a wooden square of 0.25 m2 for species biomass analysis.The macrophyte stand was composed entirely of emergent species. Considering the periods, most species were less frequent in the rainy period (April, but Ipomea ramosissima (Poir. Choisy, Commelina nudiflora L., Eleocharis acuntagula (Roxb. Schult. and Verbena litorales (Kunth. had their frequency increased during this period, probably due to their resistance. The influence of flood as measured by the NMDS point out that both before and after the flood, there are plots with distinct compositions and biomass. The water level variation affects the dynamics of plant composition and structure in marginal areas of the Reservoir.

  3. Higher levels of cardiovascular fitness are associated with better executive function and prefrontal oxygenation in younger and older women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier eDupuy

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Aim: Many studies have suggested that physical exercise training improves cognition and more selectively executive functions. There is a growing interest to clarify the neurophysiological mechanisms that underlie this effect. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the neurophysiological changes in cerebral oxygenation associated with physical fitness level and executive functions. Method: In this study, 22 younger and 36 older women underwent a maximal graded continuous test (i.e., O2max in order to classifyassign them into a fitness group (higher vs. lower fit. All participants completed neuropsychological paper and pencil testing and a computerized Stroop task (which contained executive and non-executive conditions in which the change in pPrefrontal cortex oxygenation change was evaluated in all participants with a near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS. system during a computerized Stroop task (which contains executive and non-executive conditions. Results: Our findings revealed a Fitness x Condition interaction (p < .05 such that higher fit women scored better on measures of executive functions than lower fit women. In comparison to lower fit women, higher fit women had faster reaction times in the switching (executiveExecutive condition of the computerized Stroop task. No significant effect was observed ion the non-executive condition of the test and no interactions were found with age. In measures of cerebral oxygenation (ΔHbT and ΔHbO2, we found a main effect of fitness on cerebral oxygenation during the Stroop task such that only high fit women demonstrated a significant increase in the right inferior frontal gyrus. Discussion/Conclusion:Higher fit individuals who demonstrate better cardiorespiratory functions (as measured by O2max show faster reaction times and greater cerebral oxygenation in the right inferior frontal gyrus than women with lower fitness levels. The lack of interaction with age, suggests that good

  4. Artificial molecular motors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kassem, Salma; van Leeuwen, Thomas; Lubbe, Anouk S.; Wilson, Miriam R.; Feringa, Ben L.; Leigh, David A.

    2017-01-01

    Motor proteins are nature's solution for directing movement at the molecular level. The field of artificial molecular motors takes inspiration from these tiny but powerful machines. Although directional motion on the nanoscale performed by synthetic molecular machines is a relatively new

  5. THE FEEDING AND PHYSICAL GROWTH OF THE SCHOOL CHILDREN WITH THE HIGHER LEVEL OF THE BONE TISSUE MINERALIZATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T.Yu. Vishnevetskaya

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The article analyzes feeding organization and quality for the children aged between 10 and 16 with the higher level of the bone tissue mineralization. The authors noted down the radical excess of the ration calorie content together with the excess of the protein and especially fat components. The researchers revealed the reduced content of the main vitamins, which contributes to the increase of the bone tissue mineralization levels among children and change in their morphofunctional status with the obesity development. in the given situation, it is necessary to speak of the ration correction according to the main components and distribution of its daily calorie content, as well as the ration supplements by introducing missing vitamins, which the polyvitaminic complexes may prove to be a good alternative to.Key words: children, bone tissue mineralization, food ration, vitamins.

  6. Effects of soybean resistance on variability in life history traits of the higher trophic level parasitoid Meteorus pulchricornis (Hymenoptera: Braconidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, X; Li, B; Xing, G; Meng, L

    2017-02-01

    To extrapolate the influence of plant cultivars varying in resistance levels to hosts on parasitoid life history traits, we estimated variation in parasitoid developmental and reproductive performances as a function of resistance in soybean cultivars, which were randomly chosen from a line of resistant genotypes. Our study showed that the parasitoid Meteorus pulchricornis varied widely in offspring survival and lifetime fecundity, but varied slightly in development time and adult body size, in response to the soybean cultivars that varied in resistance to the host Spodoptera litura. Furthermore, the variability in survival and lifetime fecundity was different between attacking the 2nd and the 4th instar host larvae, varying more in survival but less in lifetime fecundity when attacking the 4th than 2nd instar larvae. Our study provides further evidence supporting that plant resistance to herbivorous hosts have variable effects on different life history traits of higher trophic level parasitoids.

  7. Heart transplant centers with multidisciplinary team show a higher level of chronic illness management - Findings from the International BRIGHT Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cajita, Maan Isabella; Baumgartner, Eva; Berben, Lut; Denhaerynck, Kris; Helmy, Remon; Schönfeld, Sandra; Berger, Gabriele; Vetter, Christine; Dobbels, Fabienne; Russell, Cynthia L; De Geest, Sabina

    The objectives of this study were to: (1) explore the proportion of HTx centers that have a multidisciplinary team and (2) assess the relationship between multidisciplinarity and the level of chronic illness management (CIM). The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) recommends a multidisciplinary approach in heart transplant (HTx) follow-up care but little is known regarding the proportion of HTx centers that meet this recommendation and the impact on patient care. HTx centers with a multidisciplinary team may offer higher levels of CIM, a care model that has the potential to improve outcomes after HTx. We conducted a secondary analysis of the BRIGHT study, a cross-sectional study in 11 countries. Multidisciplinarity in the 36 HTx centers was assessed through HTx director reports and was defined as having a team that was composed of physician(s), nurse(s), and another healthcare professional (either a social worker, psychiatrist, psychologist, pharmacist, dietician, physical therapist, or occupational therapist). CIM was assessed with the Patient Assessment of Chronic Illness Care (PACIC). Multiple linear regression assessed the relationship between multidisciplinarity and the level of CIM. Twenty-nine (80.6%) of the HTx centers had a multidisciplinary team. Furthermore, multidisciplinarity was significantly associated with higher levels of CIM (β = 5.2, P = 0.042). Majority of the HTx centers follows the ISHLT recommendation for a multidisciplinary approach. Multidisciplinarity was associated with CIM and point toward a structural factor that needs to be in place for moving toward CIM. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. STATE LEVEL MECHANISMS FOR LEARNING FROM WHISTLEBLOWING CASES AT INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher R. Schmidt

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available State level mechanisms for soliciting, validating, and learning from whistleblower claims of fraud, theft, or misconduct against public colleges and universities are explored in four US states: California, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Ohio. Sequential public information requests were used to understand the methods that were used in each state, the types of claims that each state experienced, and to understand their processes for learning from such claims. The types of claims, breadth of scope that the claims span, and disposition of the claims is used to characterize each state’s approach and compare and contrast results with other states in the sample. There was a wide variation in responses and approaches used in each state. Varying from no information solicited or maintained (Michigan to full histories that include case level detail (Ohio, excellent multi-year case tracking and reporting (California to the voluminous tracking of every property loss or damage in every institution (Massachusetts. An organic rubric is developed and used to compare and contrast the responses and service level provided by each of the states. Although anonymous whistleblower claims are essential to the governance and administration of higher education, state level mechanisms vary widely in their approaches to administering this process and ensuring better future outcomes. Establishing a standard based upon best practices would ensure that institutions are making the best use of all information available to them to improve their immunity from employee fraud and theft and misconduct.

  9. Higher direct bilirubin levels during mid-pregnancy are associated with lower risk of gestational diabetes mellitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Chaoqun; Zhong, Chunrong; Zhou, Xuezhen; Chen, Renjuan; Wu, Jiangyue; Wang, Weiye; Li, Xiating; Ding, Huisi; Guo, Yanfang; Gao, Qin; Hu, Xingwen; Xiong, Guoping; Yang, Xuefeng; Hao, Liping; Xiao, Mei; Yang, Nianhong

    2017-01-01

    Bilirubin concentrations have been recently reported to be negatively associated with type 2 diabetes mellitus. We examined the association between bilirubin concentrations and gestational diabetes mellitus. In a prospective cohort study, 2969 pregnant women were recruited prior to 16 weeks of gestation and were followed up until delivery. The value of bilirubin was tested and oral glucose tolerance test was conducted to screen gestational diabetes mellitus. The relationship between serum bilirubin concentration and gestational weeks was studied by two-piecewise linear regression. A subsample of 1135 participants with serum bilirubin test during 16-18 weeks gestation was conducted to research the association between serum bilirubin levels and risk of gestational diabetes mellitus by logistic regression. Gestational diabetes mellitus developed in 8.5 % of the participants (223 of 2969). Two-piecewise linear regression analyses demonstrated that the levels of bilirubin decreased with gestational week up to the turning point 23 and after that point, levels of bilirubin were increased slightly. In multiple logistic regression analysis, the relative risk of developing gestational diabetes mellitus was lower in the highest tertile of direct bilirubin than that in the lowest tertile (RR 0.60; 95 % CI, 0.35-0.89). The results suggested that women with higher serum direct bilirubin levels during the second trimester of pregnancy have lower risk for development of gestational diabetes mellitus.

  10. Cellular energy allocation in zebra mussels exposed along a pollution gradient: linking cellular effects to higher levels of biological organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolders, R; Bervoets, L; De Coen, W; Blust, R

    2004-05-01

    Organisms exposed to suboptimal environments incur a cost of dealing with stress in terms of metabolic resources. The total amount of energy available for maintenance, growth and reproduction, based on the biochemical analysis of the energy budget, may provide a sensitive measure of stress in an organism. While the concept is clear, linking cellular or biochemical responses to the individual and population or community level remains difficult. The aim of this study was to validate, under field conditions, using cellular energy budgets [i.e. changes in glycogen-, lipid- and protein-content and mitochondrial electron transport system (ETS)] as an ecologically relevant measurement of stress by comparing these responses to physiological and organismal endpoints. Therefore, a 28-day in situ bioassay with zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) was performed in an effluent-dominated stream. Five locations were selected along the pollution gradient and compared with a nearby (reference) site. Cellular Energy Allocation (CEA) served as a biomarker of cellular energetics, while Scope for Growth (SFG) indicated effects on a physiological level and Tissue Condition Index and wet tissue weight/dry tissue weight ratio were used as endpoints of organismal effects. Results indicated that energy budgets at a cellular level of biological organization provided the fastest and most sensitive response and energy budgets are a relevant currency to extrapolate cellular effects to higher levels of biological organization within the exposed mussels.

  11. Artificial Consciousness or Artificial Intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spanache Florin

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Artificial intelligence is a tool designed by people for the gratification of their own creative ego, so we can not confuse conscience with intelligence and not even intelligence in its human representation with conscience. They are all different concepts and they have different uses. Philosophically, there are differences between autonomous people and automatic artificial intelligence. This is the difference between intelligence and artificial intelligence, autonomous versus automatic. But conscience is above these differences because it is neither conditioned by the self-preservation of autonomy, because a conscience is something that you use to help your neighbor, nor automatic, because one’s conscience is tested by situations which are not similar or subject to routine. So, artificial intelligence is only in science-fiction literature similar to an autonomous conscience-endowed being. In real life, religion with its notions of redemption, sin, expiation, confession and communion will not have any meaning for a machine which cannot make a mistake on its own.

  12. Individuals with autism have higher 8-Iso-PGF2α levels than controls, but no correlation with quantitative assay of Paraoxonase 1 serum levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pop, Bianca; Niculae, Alexandru-Ștefan; Pop, Tudor Lucian; Răchișan, Andreea Liana

    2017-12-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) represents a very large set of neurodevelopmental issues with diverse clinical outcomes. Various hypotheses have been put forth for the etiology of autism spectrum disorder, including issues pertaining to oxidative stress. In this study, we conducted measurements of serum 8-Iso-Prostaglanding F2 α (8-iso-PGF2α, which is the results of non-enzimatically mediated polyunsaturated fatty acid oxidation) in a population of individuals with autism and a control group of age and sex matched controls. A quantitative assay of Paraoxonase 1 (PON1) was conducted. Data regarding comorbidities, structural MRI scans, medication, intelligence quotient (IQ) and Childhood Autism Rating Scale scores (CARS) were also included in our study. Our results show that patients diagnosed with autism have higher levels of 8-iso-PGF2α than their neurotypical counterparts. Levels of this particular metabolite, however, do not correlate with quantitative serum levels of Paraoxonase 1, which has been shown to be altered in individuals with autism. Neither 8-iso-PGF2α nor quantitative levels of PON1 provide any meaningful correlation with clinical or neuroimaging data in this study group. Future research should focus on providing data regarding PON 1 phenotype, in addition to standard quantitative measurements, in relation to 8-iso-PGF2α as well as other clinical and structural brain findings.

  13. Persistent human Borna disease virus infection modifies the acetylome of human oligodendroglia cells towards higher energy and transporter levels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Xia [Shanghai Key Laboratory of Forensic Medicine, Institute of Forensic Science, Ministry of Justice, Shanghai 200063 (China); Liu, Siwen [Institute of Neuroscience and the Collaborative Innovation Center for Brain Science, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Bode, Liv [Institute of Neuroscience and the Collaborative Innovation Center for Brain Science, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Liu, Chengyu [Institute of Neuroscience and the Collaborative Innovation Center for Brain Science, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Zhang, Liang [Institute of Neuroscience and the Collaborative Innovation Center for Brain Science, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Wang, Xiao [Institute of Neuroscience and the Collaborative Innovation Center for Brain Science, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Li, Dan [Department of Pathology, Faculty of Basic Medicine, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Lei, Yang [Department of Internal Medicine, University-Town Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Peng, Xiaojun [Jingjie PTM BioLab (Hangzhou) Co. Ltd, Hangzhou 310018 (China); Cheng, Zhongyi [Advanced Institute of Translational Medicine, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092 (China); and others

    2015-11-15

    Background: Borna disease virus (BDV) is a neurotropic RNA virus persistently infecting mammalian hosts including humans. Lysine acetylation (Kac) is a key protein post-translational modification (PTM). The unexpectedly broad regulatory scope of Kac let us to profile the entire acetylome upon BDV infection. Methods: The acetylome was profiled through stable isotope labeling for cell culture (SILAC)-based quantitative proteomics. The quantifiable proteome was annotated using bioinformatics. Results: We identified and quantified 791 Kac sites in 473 Kac proteins in human BDV Hu-H1-infected and non-infected oligodendroglial (OL) cells. Bioinformatic analysis revealed that BDV infection alters the acetylation of metabolic proteins, membrane-associated proteins and transmembrane transporter activity, and affects the acetylation of several lysine acetyltransferases (KAT). Conclusions: Upon BDV persistence the OL acetylome is manipulated towards higher energy and transporter levels necessary for shuttling BDV proteins to and from nuclear replication sites. - Highlights: • We used SILAC-based proteomics to analyze the acetylome of BDV infected OL cells. • We quantified 791Kac sites in 473 proteins. • Bioinformatic analysis revealed altered acetylation of metabolic proteins et al. • BDV manipulates the OL acetylome towards higher energy and transporter levels. • BDV infection is associated with enriched phosphate-associated metabolic processes.

  14. The motivation paradox: higher psychosocial problem levels in severely mentally ill patients are associated with less motivation for treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulder, Cornelis L; Jochems, E; Kortrijk, H E

    2014-04-01

    Lack of motivation for treatment makes a subgroup of patients with severe mental illness (SMI) difficult to engage in psychiatric treatment. Such difficult-to-engage patients may also be the most in need of treatment. We hypothesized that the level of psychosocial problems would be inversely related to motivation for treatment. Cross-sectional study in two independent samples. The first sample (n = 294) included SMI patients who participated in a randomized controlled trial and were assessed using the Health of the Nation Outcome Scales (HoNOS) and self-rated and clinician-rated motivation-for-treatment scales. The second sample (n = 1,170) included SMI patients who were treated in Assertive Outreach Teams and were routinely assessed with the HoNOS and a motivation-for-treatment scale. In both samples, patients also self-rated their quality of life. In both samples, patients with HoNOS scores of 16 and higher had lower motivation scores on all motivation scales than patients with lower HoNOS scores, and also a lower quality of life. A motivation paradox seems inherent to this association between higher psychosocial problems levels, less motivation for treatment, and lower quality of life. Such a paradox has clinical relevance, as it may provide an ethical basis for outreach services which aim to engage marginally motivated SMI patients with severe psychosocial problems into mental health care.

  15. Persistent human Borna disease virus infection modifies the acetylome of human oligodendroglia cells towards higher energy and transporter levels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Xia; Liu, Siwen; Bode, Liv; Liu, Chengyu; Zhang, Liang; Wang, Xiao; Li, Dan; Lei, Yang; Peng, Xiaojun; Cheng, Zhongyi

    2015-01-01

    Background: Borna disease virus (BDV) is a neurotropic RNA virus persistently infecting mammalian hosts including humans. Lysine acetylation (Kac) is a key protein post-translational modification (PTM). The unexpectedly broad regulatory scope of Kac let us to profile the entire acetylome upon BDV infection. Methods: The acetylome was profiled through stable isotope labeling for cell culture (SILAC)-based quantitative proteomics. The quantifiable proteome was annotated using bioinformatics. Results: We identified and quantified 791 Kac sites in 473 Kac proteins in human BDV Hu-H1-infected and non-infected oligodendroglial (OL) cells. Bioinformatic analysis revealed that BDV infection alters the acetylation of metabolic proteins, membrane-associated proteins and transmembrane transporter activity, and affects the acetylation of several lysine acetyltransferases (KAT). Conclusions: Upon BDV persistence the OL acetylome is manipulated towards higher energy and transporter levels necessary for shuttling BDV proteins to and from nuclear replication sites. - Highlights: • We used SILAC-based proteomics to analyze the acetylome of BDV infected OL cells. • We quantified 791Kac sites in 473 proteins. • Bioinformatic analysis revealed altered acetylation of metabolic proteins et al. • BDV manipulates the OL acetylome towards higher energy and transporter levels. • BDV infection is associated with enriched phosphate-associated metabolic processes.

  16. GHG reduction potential of changes in consumption patterns and higher quality levels: Evidence from Swiss household consumption survey

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Girod, Bastien, E-mail: bastien.girod@env.ethz.c [ETH Zurich, Institute for Environmental Decisions, Natural and Social Science Interface, Universitaetstrasse 22, CHN J72.1, 8092 Zurich (Switzerland); Haan, Peter de [ETH Zurich, Institute for Environmental Decisions, Natural and Social Science Interface, Universitaetstrasse 22, CHN J72.1, 8092 Zurich (Switzerland)

    2009-12-15

    An effective consumer-oriented climate policy requires knowing the GHG reduction potential of sustainable consumption. The aim of this study is to draw lessons from differences in consumption between households with high and low GHG emissions. We evaluate a survey of 14,500 households and use a method that allows measuring changes in price level of consumption. Comparing the 10% of households with the highest GHG emissions per capita with the lowest 10% - controlling for differences in expenditure level and household structure - we find a range 5-17 tons of CO{sub 2}-equivalent per capita and year. The observed differences stem mainly from heating, electricity use, car use, and travel by aircraft. Consumption patterns with low GHG emissions are characterized by less spending on mobility, but more on leisure and quality oriented consumption (leading to higher prices per unit). Further characteristics are: a higher share of organic food, low meat consumption and fewer detached single family houses. Our findings imply that a significant reduction in GHG emissions would be possible by adopting real-world consumption patterns observable in society. The twin challenge is to shift consumption towards more climate friendly patterns, and to prevent any trend towards high emitting consumption patterns.

  17. GHG reduction potential of changes in consumption patterns and higher quality levels. Evidence from Swiss household consumption survey

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Girod, Bastien; De Haan, Peter [ETH Zurich, Institute for Environmental Decisions, Natural and Social Science Interface, Universitaetstrasse 22, CHN J72.1, 8092 Zurich (Switzerland)

    2009-12-15

    An effective consumer-oriented climate policy requires knowing the GHG reduction potential of sustainable consumption. The aim of this study is to draw lessons from differences in consumption between households with high and low GHG emissions. We evaluate a survey of 14,500 households and use a method that allows measuring changes in price level of consumption. Comparing the 10% of households with the highest GHG emissions per capita with the lowest 10% - controlling for differences in expenditure level and household structure - we find a range 5-17 tons of CO{sub 2}-equivalent per capita and year. The observed differences stem mainly from heating, electricity use, car use, and travel by aircraft. Consumption patterns with low GHG emissions are characterized by less spending on mobility, but more on leisure and quality oriented consumption (leading to higher prices per unit). Further characteristics are: a higher share of organic food, low meat consumption and fewer detached single family houses. Our findings imply that a significant reduction in GHG emissions would be possible by adopting real-world consumption patterns observable in society. The twin challenge is to shift consumption towards more climate friendly patterns, and to prevent any trend towards high emitting consumption patterns. (author)

  18. GHG reduction potential of changes in consumption patterns and higher quality levels: Evidence from Swiss household consumption survey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Girod, Bastien; Haan, Peter de

    2009-01-01

    An effective consumer-oriented climate policy requires knowing the GHG reduction potential of sustainable consumption. The aim of this study is to draw lessons from differences in consumption between households with high and low GHG emissions. We evaluate a survey of 14,500 households and use a method that allows measuring changes in price level of consumption. Comparing the 10% of households with the highest GHG emissions per capita with the lowest 10% - controlling for differences in expenditure level and household structure - we find a range 5-17 tons of CO 2 -equivalent per capita and year. The observed differences stem mainly from heating, electricity use, car use, and travel by aircraft. Consumption patterns with low GHG emissions are characterized by less spending on mobility, but more on leisure and quality oriented consumption (leading to higher prices per unit). Further characteristics are: a higher share of organic food, low meat consumption and fewer detached single family houses. Our findings imply that a significant reduction in GHG emissions would be possible by adopting real-world consumption patterns observable in society. The twin challenge is to shift consumption towards more climate friendly patterns, and to prevent any trend towards high emitting consumption patterns.

  19. Physical activity level in people with age related white matter changes correlates to better motor performance, lower comorbidity and higher cognitive level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pettersson, Anna F; Wahlund, Lars-Olof; Bronge, Lena; Olsson, Elisabeth; Amberla, Kaarina; Baezner, Hansjoerg; Crisby, Milita

    2017-07-12

    Physical activity plays a pivotal role in the development of disability and may modify the negative effect of vascular risk factors on progression of both cardio and cerebrovascular disorders. The aim of this study was to evaluate the activity level in people with age-related white matter changes as identified on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in relation to motor performance, cognition and perceived health. Data came from the first year follow up of one participating centers of the LADIS study. Fifty one subjects were first enrolled in the study. Complete first year follow up data was available for 41 subjects. Information on comorbidity, physical activity level, physical function, cognition, level of white matter changes and perceived health was collected. Physical activity level was classified with a yes or no question and with the Frenchay Activities Index (FAI). Only 36% of the subjects in this study were physically active according to the yes/no question. 27.5% of the subjects were active according to the FAI score which evaluates the everyday activities. Being active discriminated subjects with better physical function. Subjects active according to the FAI score had a higher cognitive level (p ≤ 0.01), lower comorbidity (p = 0.02) and performed better on all motor function tasks as assessed by walking speed (p ≤ 0.01) and the Short Physical Performance battery (SPPB) (p ≤ 0.01). Being physically active seems to be a long term protective factor. In our study, the majority of subjects with Age Related White Mattter Changes (ARWMC) with no or mild Instrumental Activity of Daily Living (IADL) disability did not attain recommended level of activity at first year follow up. Whether or not increasing physical activity may slow down cognitive decline and lessen development of disability in physically inactive subjects with manifest ARWC remains to be studied. not applicable.

  20. Higher TNF-α, IGF-1 and leptin levels are found in tasters than non-tasters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui eWang

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Taste perception is controlled by taste cells that are present in the tongue and produce and secrete various metabolic hormones. Recent studies have demonstrated that taste receptors in tongue, gut and the pancreas are associated with local hormone secretion. The aim of this study was to determine whether there is a link between taste sensitivity and levels of circulating metabolic hormones in human and whether taste sensitivity is potentially related to peripheral metabolic regulation. 31 subjects were recruited and separated into tasters and non-tasters based on their phenol thiocarbamide (PTC bitter taste test results. Fasting plasma and saliva were collected and levels of hormones and cytokines were assayed. We observed significant differences in both hormone levels and hormone-body mass index (BMI correlation between tasters and non-tasters. Tasters had higher plasma levels of leptin (p=0.05, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α (p=0.04, and Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1 (p=0.03. There was also a trend towards increased IGF-1 levels in the saliva of tasters (p=0.06. We found a positive correlation between plasma levels of glucose and BMI (R=0.4999, p=0.04 exclusively in non-tasters, not in tasters. In contrast, plasma C-peptide levels were found to be positively correlated to BMI (R=0.5563, p=0.03 in tasters. Saliva TNF-α levels were negatively correlated with BMI in tasters (R= -0.5908, p=0.03. Our findings demonstrate that there are differences in circulating levels of leptin, TNF-α and IGF-1 between tasters and non-tasters. These findings indicate that in addition to regulate eating behaviours, taste perception could also affect energy metabolism by controlling hormone secretion. People with different taste sensitivity may respond differently to the nutrient stimulation. Further work investigating the link between taste perception and peripheral metabolic control could potentially lead to the development of novel therapies for obese

  1. A REVIEW OF THE PRACTICE OF WORK-BASED LEARNING (WBL AT HIGHER EDUCATION LEVEL IN THE UK

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Talbot

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study is to review the practice of work-based learning (WBL, based on the experience of higher education institutions in the United Kingdom.Methods. The methods of system and comparative analysis, synthesis and generalization are used.Results. The background and development of WBL is given; the importance and value of this form of education in the modern, rapidly changing society is shown. The main characteristics are selected and basic aspects of WBL programs profitable different from traditional university programs are designated: relevance to real production processes; student centricity; flexibility of content which is built proceeding from interests of an employer and a student; high extent of integration of various disciplines and fields of knowledge; recognition of the prior certified and independent training; optimization of time expenditure; possibility of the choice of the place of training, its sequence, schedule of control actions, and other advantages. Options of a program implementation of WBL, complexity of their implementation and methods of their overcoming are described. A few critical remarks concerning WBL programs are also presented.Scientific novelty. For the first time the analytical review of WBL practice at a higher education level, which is widespread in English-speaking countries over the last 25 years, is presented in the Russian scientific literature in education.Practical significance. The materials provided in the article can be useful to heads and teachers of institutions of higher education; methodologists of structures of vocational preparation and advanced training of personnel of high technology productions; the employers heading large-scale industries and interested in upgrading of employees’ educational level.

  2. Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, David R; Palacios-González, César; Harris, John

    2016-04-01

    It seems natural to think that the same prudential and ethical reasons for mutual respect and tolerance that one has vis-à-vis other human persons would hold toward newly encountered paradigmatic but nonhuman biological persons. One also tends to think that they would have similar reasons for treating we humans as creatures that count morally in our own right. This line of thought transcends biological boundaries-namely, with regard to artificially (super)intelligent persons-but is this a safe assumption? The issue concerns ultimate moral significance: the significance possessed by human persons, persons from other planets, and hypothetical nonorganic persons in the form of artificial intelligence (AI). This article investigates why our possible relations to AI persons could be more complicated than they first might appear, given that they might possess a radically different nature to us, to the point that civilized or peaceful coexistence in a determinate geographical space could be impossible to achieve.

  3. Does Prison Crowding Predict Higher Rates of Substance Use Related Parole Violations? A Recurrent Events Multi-Level Survival Analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael A Ruderman

    Full Text Available This administrative data-linkage cohort study examines the association between prison crowding and the rate of post-release parole violations in a random sample of prisoners released with parole conditions in California, for an observation period of two years (January 2003 through December 2004.Crowding overextends prison resources needed to adequately protect inmates and provide drug rehabilitation services. Violence and lack of access to treatment are known risk factors for drug use and substance use disorders. These and other psychosocial effects of crowding may lead to higher rates of recidivism in California parolees.Rates of parole violation for parolees exposed to high and medium levels of prison crowding were compared to parolees with low prison crowding exposure. Hazard ratios (HRs with 95% confidence intervals (CIs were estimated using a Cox model for recurrent events. Our dataset included 13070 parolees in California, combining individual level parolee data with aggregate level crowding data for multilevel analysis.Comparing parolees exposed to high crowding with those exposed to low crowding, the effect sizes from greatest to least were absconding violations (HR 3.56 95% CI: 3.05-4.17, drug violations (HR 2.44 95% CI: 2.00-2.98, non-violent violations (HR 2.14 95% CI: 1.73-2.64, violent and serious violations (HR 1.88 95% CI: 1.45-2.43, and technical violations (HR 1.86 95% CI: 1.37-2.53.Prison crowding predicted higher rates of parole violations after release from prison. The effect was magnitude-dependent and particularly strong for drug charges. Further research into whether adverse prison experiences, such as crowding, are associated with recidivism and drug use in particular may be warranted.

  4. Does Prison Crowding Predict Higher Rates of Substance Use Related Parole Violations? A Recurrent Events Multi-Level Survival Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruderman, Michael A; Wilson, Deirdra F; Reid, Savanna

    2015-01-01

    This administrative data-linkage cohort study examines the association between prison crowding and the rate of post-release parole violations in a random sample of prisoners released with parole conditions in California, for an observation period of two years (January 2003 through December 2004). Crowding overextends prison resources needed to adequately protect inmates and provide drug rehabilitation services. Violence and lack of access to treatment are known risk factors for drug use and substance use disorders. These and other psychosocial effects of crowding may lead to higher rates of recidivism in California parolees. Rates of parole violation for parolees exposed to high and medium levels of prison crowding were compared to parolees with low prison crowding exposure. Hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using a Cox model for recurrent events. Our dataset included 13070 parolees in California, combining individual level parolee data with aggregate level crowding data for multilevel analysis. Comparing parolees exposed to high crowding with those exposed to low crowding, the effect sizes from greatest to least were absconding violations (HR 3.56 95% CI: 3.05-4.17), drug violations (HR 2.44 95% CI: 2.00-2.98), non-violent violations (HR 2.14 95% CI: 1.73-2.64), violent and serious violations (HR 1.88 95% CI: 1.45-2.43), and technical violations (HR 1.86 95% CI: 1.37-2.53). Prison crowding predicted higher rates of parole violations after release from prison. The effect was magnitude-dependent and particularly strong for drug charges. Further research into whether adverse prison experiences, such as crowding, are associated with recidivism and drug use in particular may be warranted.

  5. Does Prison Crowding Predict Higher Rates of Substance Use Related Parole Violations? A Recurrent Events Multi-Level Survival Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruderman, Michael A.; Wilson, Deirdra F.; Reid, Savanna

    2015-01-01

    Objective This administrative data-linkage cohort study examines the association between prison crowding and the rate of post-release parole violations in a random sample of prisoners released with parole conditions in California, for an observation period of two years (January 2003 through December 2004). Background Crowding overextends prison resources needed to adequately protect inmates and provide drug rehabilitation services. Violence and lack of access to treatment are known risk factors for drug use and substance use disorders. These and other psychosocial effects of crowding may lead to higher rates of recidivism in California parolees. Methods Rates of parole violation for parolees exposed to high and medium levels of prison crowding were compared to parolees with low prison crowding exposure. Hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using a Cox model for recurrent events. Our dataset included 13070 parolees in California, combining individual level parolee data with aggregate level crowding data for multilevel analysis. Results Comparing parolees exposed to high crowding with those exposed to low crowding, the effect sizes from greatest to least were absconding violations (HR 3.56 95% CI: 3.05–4.17), drug violations (HR 2.44 95% CI: 2.00–2.98), non-violent violations (HR 2.14 95% CI: 1.73–2.64), violent and serious violations (HR 1.88 95% CI: 1.45–2.43), and technical violations (HR 1.86 95% CI: 1.37–2.53). Conclusions Prison crowding predicted higher rates of parole violations after release from prison. The effect was magnitude-dependent and particularly strong for drug charges. Further research into whether adverse prison experiences, such as crowding, are associated with recidivism and drug use in particular may be warranted. PMID:26492490

  6. Digital Clubbing Is Associated with Higher Serum KL-6 Levels and Lower Pulmonary Function in Patients with Interstitial Lung Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazushige Shiraishi

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Although digital clubbing is a common presentation in patients with interstitial lung disease (ILD, little has been reported regarding its role in assessing patients with ILD. This study evaluated patients with ILD for the presence of clubbing and investigated its association with clinical data. Methods. We evaluated patients with ILD who visited the teaching hospital at which the study was conducted, between October 2014 and January 2015. Clubbing, evaluated using a Vernier caliper for individual patients, was defined as a phalangeal depth ratio > 1. We examined the association of clubbing with clinical data. Results. Of 102 patients with ILD, we identified 17 (16.7% with clubbing. The partial pressure of oxygen in arterial blood was lower (65.2 ± 5.9 mmHg versus 80.2 ± 3.1 mmHg; p=0.03, serum Krebs von den Lugen-6 (KL-6 levels were higher (1495.0 ± 277.4 U/mL versus 839.1 ± 70.2 U/mL; p=0.001, and the percent predicted diffusing capacity of carbon monoxide was lower (50.0 ± 6.0 versus 73.5 ± 3.1; p=0.002 in these patients with clubbing. Conclusions. Patients with clubbing had lower oxygen levels, higher serum KL-6 levels, and lower pulmonary function than those without clubbing.

  7. Artificial intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Duda, Antonín

    2009-01-01

    Abstract : Issue of this work is to acquaint the reader with the history of artificial inteligence, esspecialy branch of chess computing. Main attention is given to progress from fifties to the present. The work also deals with fighting chess programs against each other, and against human opponents. The greatest attention is focused on 1997 and duel Garry Kasparov against chess program Deep Blue. The work is divided into chapters according to chronological order.

  8. Artificial heart

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1984-10-18

    Super-pure plutonium-238 could use heat produced during fission to power an implanted artificial heart. Three model hearts have worked for some time. Concern that excess heat would make the procedure unsafe for humans has broadened the search for another energy source, such as electrohydraulic drive or an external power battery. A back pack approach may provide an interim solution until materials are developed which can withstand heart activity and be small enough for implantation.

  9. The -29G/A FSH receptor gene polymorphism is associated with higher FSH and LH levels in normozoospermic men.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamburino, L; La Vignera, S; Tomaselli, V; Condorelli, R A; Cannarella, R; Mongioì, L M; Calogero, A E

    2017-10-01

    The functional role of the FSHR promoter -29G/A polymorphism (rs1394205) in men is not clear. Some studies failed to find a relationship between the FSHR -29G/A and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) levels and did not associate the SNP with male infertility. Only one study showed that the FSHR -29 SNP modulates serum FSH levels in Baltic young male cohort. Because the SNP -29G/A has to be shown to have a strong effect on in vitro transcription activity of the FSHR promoter and the activation of FSHR is necessary for a normal FSH function, this study was undertaken to assess whether the FSHR -29G/A SNP modulates the gonadal endocrine function in men. A total of 200 men with alteration of conventional sperm parameters or normozoospermia (according to the parameters WHO 2010), were genotyped by TaqMan Assay. Hormone levels were measured by immunoassay, and sperm analysis was performed according to the World Health Organization criteria. A significant gradient of increasing FSH levels across the FSHR -29G/A genotypes was observed (p men (n = 110), those with FSHR -29A-allele carriers (GA + AA and AA) had higher serum FSH (p men with the GG genotype. The carrier status of rs1394205 genotypes did not affect the other endocrine parameters neither in men with altered sperm parameters nor in normozoospermic men. The FSHR -29G/A polymorphism modulates FSH and, for the first time, LH serum levels and BMI in normozoospermic men. These findings underline the importance to pay close attention to the studies of genetic variations associated with clinical-endocrine parameters.

  10. Higher plasma motilin levels in obese patients decrease after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery and regulate hunger.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deloose, E; Janssen, P; Lannoo, M; Van der Schueren, B; Depoortere, I; Tack, J

    2016-07-01

    Motilin-induced phase III contractions of the migrating motor complex (MMC) signal hunger in healthy volunteers. The current aim was to study the role of motilin as a hunger-inducing factor in obese patients and to evaluate the effect of Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) surgery on plasma motilin levels and hunger scores. Motilin and ghrelin plasma levels were determined during a complete MMC cycle in controls and obese patients selected for RYGB before, 6 months and 1 year after surgery. 20 min after the end of the second phase III, obese patients received an intravenous infusion of 40 mg erythromycin. Hunger was scored every 5 min. Hedonic hunger was assessed in obese patients with the Power of Food Scale questionnaire. Obesity caused a switch in the origin of phase III from antrum to duodenum. Obese patients had significantly higher motilin levels compared with controls during the MMC but tended to lack the motilin peak prior to phase III necessary to trigger hunger. Hunger scores during phase III were significantly lower in obese patients, but could be restored to control levels through the administration of a low dose of the motilin agonist, erythromycin. After RYGB surgery motilin, but not ghrelin, levels decreased in parallel with hedonic hunger scores. Motilin may be an important regulator involved in the pathogenesis of obesity. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/

  11. The Relationship between Multiplication Fact Speed-Recall and Fluency and Higher Level Mathematics Learning with Eighth Grade Middle School Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curry, Steven James

    2012-01-01

    This quantitative study investigated relationships between higher level mathematics learning and multiplication fact fluency, multiplication fact speed-recall, and reading grade equivalency of eighth grade students in Algebra I and Pre-Algebra. Higher level mathematics learning was indicated by an average score of 80% or higher on first and second…

  12. 50 Hz hippocampal stimulation in refractory epilepsy: Higher level of basal glutamate predicts greater release of glutamate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavus, Idil; Widi, Gabriel A; Duckrow, Robert B; Zaveri, Hitten; Kennard, Jeremy T; Krystal, John; Spencer, Dennis D

    2016-02-01

    The effect of electrical stimulation on brain glutamate release in humans is unknown. Glutamate is elevated at baseline in the epileptogenic hippocampus of patients with refractory epilepsy, and increases during spontaneous seizures. We examined the effect of 50 Hz stimulation on glutamate release and its relationship to interictal levels in the hippocampus of patients with epilepsy. In addition, we measured basal and stimulated glutamate levels in a subset of these patients where stimulation elicited a seizure. Subjects (n = 10) were patients with medically refractory epilepsy who were undergoing intracranial electroencephalography (EEG) evaluation in an epilepsy monitoring unit. Electrical stimulation (50 Hz) was delivered through implanted hippocampal electrodes (n = 11), and microdialysate samples were collected every 2 min. Basal glutamate, changes in glutamate efflux with stimulation, and the relationships between peak stimulation-associated glutamate concentrations, basal zero-flow levels, and stimulated seizures were examined. Stimulation of epileptic hippocampi in patients with refractory epilepsy caused increases in glutamate efflux (p = 0.005, n = 10), and 4 of ten patients experienced brief stimulated seizures. Stimulation-induced increases in glutamate were not observed during the evoked seizures, but rather were related to the elevation in interictal basal glutamate (R(2) = 0.81, p = 0.001). The evoked-seizure group had lower basal glutamate levels than the no-seizure group (p = 0.04), with no stimulation-induced change in glutamate efflux (p = 0.47, n = 4). Conversely, increased glutamate was observed following stimulation in the no-seizure group (p = 0.005, n = 7). Subjects with an atrophic hippocampus had higher basal glutamate levels (p = 0.03, n = 7) and higher stimulation-induced glutamate efflux. Electrical stimulation of the epileptic hippocampus either increased extracellular glutamate efflux or induced seizures. The magnitude of stimulated

  13. Artificial neural network modelling of biological oxygen demand in rivers at the national level with input selection based on Monte Carlo simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Šiljić, Aleksandra; Antanasijević, Davor; Perić-Grujić, Aleksandra; Ristić, Mirjana; Pocajt, Viktor

    2015-03-01

    Biological oxygen demand (BOD) is the most significant water quality parameter and indicates water pollution with respect to the present biodegradable organic matter content. European countries are therefore obliged to report annual BOD values to Eurostat; however, BOD data at the national level is only available for 28 of 35 listed European countries for the period prior to 2008, among which 46% of data is missing. This paper describes the development of an artificial neural network model for the forecasting of annual BOD values at the national level, using widely available sustainability and economical/industrial parameters as inputs. The initial general regression neural network (GRNN) model was trained, validated and tested utilizing 20 inputs. The number of inputs was reduced to 15 using the Monte Carlo simulation technique as the input selection method. The best results were achieved with the GRNN model utilizing 25% less inputs than the initial model and a comparison with a multiple linear regression model trained and tested using the same input variables using multiple statistical performance indicators confirmed the advantage of the GRNN model. Sensitivity analysis has shown that inputs with the greatest effect on the GRNN model were (in descending order) precipitation, rural population with access to improved water sources, treatment capacity of wastewater treatment plants (urban) and treatment of municipal waste, with the last two having an equal effect. Finally, it was concluded that the developed GRNN model can be useful as a tool to support the decision-making process on sustainable development at a regional, national and international level.

  14. Determination of the activity concentration levels of the artificial radionuclide137Cs in soil samples collected from Qatar using high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Sulaiti, Huda; Nasir, Tabassum; Al Mugren, K. S.; Alkhomashi, N.; Al-Dahan, N.; Al-Dosari, M.; Bradley, D. A.; Bukhari, S.; Regan, P. H.; Santawamaitre, T.; Malain, D.; Habib, A.; Al-Dosari, Hanan; Daar, Eman

    2016-09-01

    The goal of this study was to establish the first baseline measurements for radioactivity concentration of the artificial radionuclide 137Cs in soil samples collected from the Qatarian peninsula. The work focused on the determination of the activity concentrations levels of man-made radiation in 129 soil samples collected across the landscape of the State of Qatar. All the samples were collected before the most recent accident in Japan, “the 2011 Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant accident”. The activity concentrations have been measured via high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometry using a hyper-pure germanium detector situated in a low-background environment with a copper inner-plated passive lead shield. A radiological map showing the activity concentrations of 137Cs is presented in this work. The concentration wasfound to range from 0.21 to 15.41 Bq/kg. The highest activity concentration of 137Cs was observed in sample no. 26 in North of Qatar. The mean value was found to be around 2.15 ± 0.27 Bq/kg. These values lie within the expected range relative to the countries in the region. It is expected that this contamination is mainly due to the Chernobyl accident on 26 April 1986, but this conclusion cannot be confirmed because of the lack of data before this accident.

  15. Higher levels of ethyl paraben and butyl paraben in rat amniotic fluid than in maternal plasma after subcutaneous administration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frederiksen, Hanne; Taxvig, Camilla; Hass, Ulla

    2008-01-01

    to obtain more knowledge about the distribution of ethyl paraben and butyl paraben in pregnant rats and pups after perinatal exposure, the presented study was designed. The data show response and distribution of ethyl paraben and butyl paraben in maternal rat plasma, pools of amniotic fluids, placenta......, whole-body fetuses, and in fetal liver after dosing of dams with 100, 200, and 400 mg/kg body weight (bw)/day from gestational day 7 to 21. After cesarean section of dams, the fluids and tissues were collected, deconjugated, and purified by solid-phase extraction, and ethyl paraben and butyl paraben...... were analyzed by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Markedly higher levels of ethyl paraben compared to butyl paraben were found in all fluids and tissues. Both ethyl paraben and butyl paraben in maternal plasma, livers, and whole-body tissues from fetus seemed to be saturated after dosing...

  16. The levels of liver enzymes and atypical lymphocytes are higher in youth patients with infectious mononucleosis than in preschool children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yan; Li, Jun; Ren, Yuan-Yuan; Zhao, Hong

    2013-12-01

    Infectious mononucleosis (IM) is the clinical presentation of primary infection with Epstein-Barr virus. Although the literature contains a massive amount of information on IM, most of this is related specifically to only children or adults separately. In order to distinguish any differences between preschool children and youth patients, we retrospectively analyzed their demographic and clinical features. Records of patients hospitalized from December 2001 to September 2011 with a diagnosis of IM were retrieved from Peking University First Hospital, which is a tertiary teaching hospital in Beijing. The demographic data and clinical characteristics were collected. IM was diagnosed in 287 patients during this 10-year period, with incidence peaks among preschool children (≤7 years old, 130/287, 45.3%) and youth patients (>15 and <24 years old, 101/287, 35.2%). Although the complaints at admission did not differ between these two patient groups, the incidence of clinical signs (tonsillopharyngitis, lymphadenopathy, hepatomegaly, and edema of the eyelids) was much higher in preschool children. The incidence of liver lesion and percentage of atypical lymphocytes were significantly higher in the youth group (P<0.001), and the average hospital stay was longer in this group. Pneumonia was the most common complication, and there was no case of mortality. The incidence of IM peaks among preschool children and youth patients in Beijing, China. The levels of liver enzymes and atypical lymphocytes increase with age.

  17. The levels of liver enzymes and atypical lymphocytes are higher in youth patients with infectious mononucleosis than in preschool children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Wang

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Background/AimsInfectious mononucleosis (IM is the clinical presentation of primary infection with Epstein-Barr virus. Although the literature contains a massive amount of information on IM, most of this is related specifically to only children or adults separately. In order to distinguish any differences between preschool children and youth patients, we retrospectively analyzed their demographic and clinical features.MethodsRecords of patients hospitalized from December 2001 to September 2011 with a diagnosis of IM were retrieved from Peking University First Hospital, which is a tertiary teaching hospital in Beijing. The demographic data and clinical characteristics were collected.ResultsIM was diagnosed in 287 patients during this 10-year period, with incidence peaks among preschool children (≤7 years old, 130/287, 45.3% and youth patients (>15 and <24 years old, 101/287, 35.2%. Although the complaints at admission did not differ between these two patient groups, the incidence of clinical signs (tonsillopharyngitis, lymphadenopathy, hepatomegaly, and edema of the eyelids was much higher in preschool children. The incidence of liver lesion and percentage of atypical lymphocytes were significantly higher in the youth group (P<0.001, and the average hospital stay was longer in this group. Pneumonia was the most common complication, and there was no case of mortality.ConclusionsThe incidence of IM peaks among preschool children and youth patients in Beijing, China. The levels of liver enzymes and atypical lymphocytes increase with age.

  18. Topological approach to quantum Hall effects and its important applications: higher Landau levels, graphene and its bilayer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacak, Janusz; Łydżba, Patrycja; Jacak, Lucjan

    2017-05-01

    In this paper the topological approach to quantum Hall effects is carefully described. Commensurability conditions together with proposed generators of a system braid group are employed to establish the fractional quantum Hall effect hierarchies of conventional semiconductors, monolayer and bilayer graphene structures. Obtained filling factors are compared with experimental data and a very good agreement is achieved. Preliminary constructions of ground-state wave functions in the lowest Landau level are put forward. Furthermore, this work explains why pyramids of fillings from higher bands are not counterparts of the well-known composite-fermion hierarchy - it provides with the cause for an intriguing robustness of ν = 7/3 , 8/3 and 5/2 states (also in graphene). The argumentation why paired states can be developed in two-subband systems (wide quantum wells) only when the Fermi energy lies in the first Landau level is specified. Finally, the paper also clarifies how an additional surface in bilayer systems contributes to an observation of the fractional quantum Hall effect near half-filling, ν = 1/2 .

  19. IMPROVING THE ACCURACY OF EXTRACTING SURFACE WATER QUALITY LEVELS (SWQLs USING REMOTE SENSING AND ARTIFICIAL NEURAL NETWORK: A CASE STUDY IN THE SAINT JOHN RIVER, CANADA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Sharaf El Din

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Delineating accurate surface water quality levels (SWQLs always presents a great challenge to researchers. Existing methods of assessing surface water quality only provide individual concentrations of monitoring stations without providing the overall SWQLs. Therefore, the results of existing methods are usually difficult to be understood by decision-makers. Conversely, the water quality index (WQI can simplify surface water quality assessment process to be accessible to decision-makers. However, in most cases, the WQI reflects inaccurate SWQLs due to the lack of representative water samples. It is very challenging to provide representative water samples because this process is costly and time consuming. To solve this problem, we introduce a cost-effective method which combines the Landsat-8 imagery and artificial intelligence to develop models to derive representative water samples by correlating concentrations of ground truth water samples to satellite spectral information. Our method was validated and the correlation between concentrations of ground truth water samples and predicted concentrations from the developed models reached a high level of coefficient of determination (R2 > 0.80, which is trustworthy. Afterwards, the predicted concentrations over each pixel of the study area were used as an input to the WQI developed by the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment to extract accurate SWQLs, for drinking purposes, in the Saint John River. The results indicated that SWQL was observed as 67 (Fair and 59 (Marginal for the lower and middle basins of the river, respectively. These findings demonstrate the potential of using our approach in surface water quality management.

  20. Improving the Accuracy of Extracting Surface Water Quality Levels (SWQLs) Using Remote Sensing and Artificial Neural Network: a Case Study in the Saint John River, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sammartano, G.; Spanò, A.

    2017-09-01

    Delineating accurate surface water quality levels (SWQLs) always presents a great challenge to researchers. Existing methods of assessing surface water quality only provide individual concentrations of monitoring stations without providing the overall SWQLs. Therefore, the results of existing methods are usually difficult to be understood by decision-makers. Conversely, the water quality index (WQI) can simplify surface water quality assessment process to be accessible to decision-makers. However, in most cases, the WQI reflects inaccurate SWQLs due to the lack of representative water samples. It is very challenging to provide representative water samples because this process is costly and time consuming. To solve this problem, we introduce a cost-effective method which combines the Landsat-8 imagery and artificial intelligence to develop models to derive representative water samples by correlating concentrations of ground truth water samples to satellite spectral information. Our method was validated and the correlation between concentrations of ground truth water samples and predicted concentrations from the developed models reached a high level of coefficient of determination (R2) > 0.80, which is trustworthy. Afterwards, the predicted concentrations over each pixel of the study area were used as an input to the WQI developed by the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment to extract accurate SWQLs, for drinking purposes, in the Saint John River. The results indicated that SWQL was observed as 67 (Fair) and 59 (Marginal) for the lower and middle basins of the river, respectively. These findings demonstrate the potential of using our approach in surface water quality management.

  1. Artificial graphites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maire, J.

    1984-01-01

    Artificial graphites are obtained by agglomeration of carbon powders with an organic binder, then by carbonisation at 1000 0 C and graphitization at 2800 0 C. After description of the processes and products, we show how the properties of the various materials lead to the various uses. Using graphite enables us to solve some problems, but it is not sufficient to satisfy all the need of the application. New carbonaceous material open application range. Finally, if some products are becoming obsolete, other ones are being developed in new applications [fr

  2. Elementary physical education: A focus on fitness activities and smaller class sizes are associated with higher levels of physical activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mandy Kirkham-King

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Optimizing physical activity during physical education is necessary for children to achieve daily physical activity recommendations. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship among various contextual factors with accelerometer measured physical activity during elementary physical education. Data were collected during 2015–2016 from 281 students (1st–5th grade, 137 males, 144 females from a private school located in a metropolitan area of Utah in the U.S. Students wore accelerometers for 12 consecutive weeks at an accelerometer wear frequency of 3days per week during physical education. A multi-level general linear mixed effects model was employed to examine the relationship among various physical education contextual factors and percent of wear time in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (%MVPA, accounting for clustering of observations within students and the clustering of students within classrooms. Explored contextual factors included grade level, lesson context, sex, and class size. Main effects and interactions among the factors were explored in the multi-level models. A two-way interaction of lesson context and class size on %MVPA was shown to be statistically significant. The greatest differences were found to be between fitness lessons using small class sizes compared to motor skill lessons using larger class sizes (β=14.8%, 95% C.I. 5.7%–23.9% p<0.001. Lessons that included a focus on fitness activities with class sizes that were <25 students associated with significantly higher %MVPA during elementary physical education. Keywords: Exercise, Physical education and training, Adolescents

  3. LDPC coding for QKD at higher photon flux levels based on spatial entanglement of twin beams in PDC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Daneshgaran, Fred; Mondin, Marina; Bari, Inam

    2014-01-01

    Twin beams generated by Parametric Down Conversion (PDC) exhibit quantum correlations that has been effectively used as a tool for many applications including calibration of single photon detectors. By now, detection of multi-mode spatial correlations is a mature field and in principle, only depends on the transmission and detection efficiency of the devices and the channel. In [2, 4, 5], the authors utilized their know-how on almost perfect selection of modes of pairwise correlated entangled beams and the optimization of the noise reduction to below the shot-noise level, for absolute calibration of Charge Coupled Device (CCD) cameras. The same basic principle is currently being considered by the same authors for possible use in Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) [3, 1]. The main advantage in such an approach would be the ability to work with much higher photon fluxes than that of a single photon regime that is theoretically required for discrete variable QKD applications (in practice, very weak laser pulses with mean photon count below one are used).The natural setup of quantization of CCD detection area and subsequent measurement of the correlation statistic needed to detect the presence of the eavesdropper Eve, leads to a QKD channel model that is a Discrete Memoryless Channel (DMC) with a number of inputs and outputs that can be more than two (i.e., the channel is a multi-level DMC). This paper investigates the use of Low Density Parity Check (LDPC) codes for information reconciliation on the effective parallel channels associated with the multi-level DMC. The performance of such codes are shown to be close to the theoretical limits.

  4. Human isolates of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium from Taiwan displayed significantly higher levels of antimicrobial resistance than those from Denmark.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torpdahl, Mia; Lauderdale, Tsai-Ling; Liang, Shiu-Yun; Li, Ishien; Wei, Sung-Hsi; Chiou, Chien-Shun

    2013-02-01

    Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium is a major zoonotic pathogen with a high prevalence of antimicrobial resistance. This pathogen can disseminate across borders and spread far distances via the food trade and international travel. In this study, we compared the genotypes and antimicrobial resistance of 378 S. Typhimurium isolates collected in Taiwan and Denmark between 2009 and 2010. Genotyping revealed that many S. Typhimurium strains were concurrently circulating in Taiwan, Denmark and other countries in 2009 and 2010. When compared to the isolates collected from Denmark, the isolates from Taiwan displayed a significantly higher level of resistance to 11 of the 12 tested antimicrobials. Seven genetic clusters (A-G) were designated for the isolates. A high percentage of the isolates in genetic clusters C, F and G were multidrug-resistant. Of the isolates in cluster C, 79.2% were ASSuT-resistant, characterized by resistance to ampicillin, streptomycin, sulfamethoxazole, and tetracycline. In cluster F, 84.1% of the isolates were ACSSuT-resistant (resistant to ASSuT and chloramphenicol). Cluster G was unique to Taiwan and characterized in most isolates by the absence of three VNTRs (ST20, ST30 and STTR6) as well as a variety of multidrug resistance profiles. This cluster exhibited very high to extremely high levels of resistance to several first-line drugs, and among the seven clusters, it displayed the highest levels of resistance to cefotaxime and ceftazidime, ciprofloxacin and gentamicin. The high prevalence of antimicrobial resistance in S. Typhimurium from Taiwan highlights the necessity to strictly regulate the use of antimicrobials in the agriculture and human health care sectors. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. A large-scale, higher-level, molecular phylogenetic study of the insect order Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jerome C Regier

    Full Text Available Higher-level relationships within the Lepidoptera, and particularly within the species-rich subclade Ditrysia, are generally not well understood, although recent studies have yielded progress. We present the most comprehensive molecular analysis of lepidopteran phylogeny to date, focusing on relationships among superfamilies.483 taxa spanning 115 of 124 families were sampled for 19 protein-coding nuclear genes, from which maximum likelihood tree estimates and bootstrap percentages were obtained using GARLI. Assessment of heuristic search effectiveness showed that better trees and higher bootstrap percentages probably remain to be discovered even after 1000 or more search replicates, but further search proved impractical even with grid computing. Other analyses explored the effects of sampling nonsynonymous change only versus partitioned and unpartitioned total nucleotide change; deletion of rogue taxa; and compositional heterogeneity. Relationships among the non-ditrysian lineages previously inferred from morphology were largely confirmed, plus some new ones, with strong support. Robust support was also found for divergences among non-apoditrysian lineages of Ditrysia, but only rarely so within Apoditrysia. Paraphyly for Tineoidea is strongly supported by analysis of nonsynonymous-only signal; conflicting, strong support for tineoid monophyly when synonymous signal was added back is shown to result from compositional heterogeneity.Support for among-superfamily relationships outside the Apoditrysia is now generally strong. Comparable support is mostly lacking within Apoditrysia, but dramatically increased bootstrap percentages for some nodes after rogue taxon removal, and concordance with other evidence, strongly suggest that our picture of apoditrysian phylogeny is approximately correct. This study highlights the challenge of finding optimal topologies when analyzing hundreds of taxa. It also shows that some nodes get strong support only when

  6. Testes mass, but not sperm length, increases with higher levels of polyandry in an ancient sex model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David E Vrech

    Full Text Available There is strong evidence that polyandrous taxa have evolved relatively larger testes than monogamous relatives. Sperm size may either increase or decrease across species with the risk or intensity of sperm competition. Scorpions represent an ancient direct mode with spermatophore-mediated sperm transfer and are particularly well suited for studies in sperm competition. This work aims to analyze for the first time the variables affecting testes mass, ejaculate volume and sperm length, according with their levels of polyandry, in species belonging to the Neotropical family Bothriuridae. Variables influencing testes mass and sperm length were obtained by model selection analysis using corrected Akaike Information Criterion. Testes mass varied greatly among the seven species analyzed, ranging from 1.6 ± 1.1 mg in Timogenes dorbignyi to 16.3 ± 4.5 mg in Brachistosternus pentheri with an average of 8.4 ± 5.0 mg in all the species. The relationship between testes mass and body mass was not significant. Body allocation in testes mass, taken as Gonadosomatic Index, was high in Bothriurus cordubensis and Brachistosternus ferrugineus and low in Timogenes species. The best-fitting model for testes mass considered only polyandry as predictor with a positive influence. Model selection showed that body mass influenced sperm length negatively but after correcting for body mass, none of the variables analyzed explained sperm length. Both body mass and testes mass influenced spermatophore volume positively. There was a strong phylogenetic effect on the model containing testes mass. As predicted by the sperm competition theory and according to what happens in other arthropods, testes mass increased in species with higher levels of sperm competition, and influenced positively spermatophore volume, but data was not conclusive for sperm length.

  7. A constitutive damage specific DNA-binding protein is synthesized at higher levels in UV-irradiated primate cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hirschfeld, S.; Levine, A.S.; Ozato, K.; Protic, M.

    1990-01-01

    Using a DNA band shift assay, we have identified a DNA-binding protein complex in primate cells which is present constitutively and has a high affinity for UV-irradiated, double-stranded DNA. Cells pretreated with UV light, mitomycin C, or aphidicolin have higher levels of this damage-specific DNA-binding protein complex, suggesting that the signal for induction can either be damage to the DNA or interference with cellular DNA replication. Physiochemical modifications of the DNA and competition analysis with defined substrates suggest that the most probable target site for the damage-specific DNA-binding protein complex is a 6-4'-(pyrimidine-2'-one)-pyrimidine dimer: specific binding could not be detected with probes which contain -TT- cyclobutane dimers, and damage-specific DNA binding did not decrease after photoreactivation of UV-irradiated DNA. This damage-specific DNA-binding protein complex is the first such inducible protein complex identified in primate cells. Cells from patients with the sun-sensitive cancer-prone disease, xeroderma pigmentosum (group E), are lacking both the constitutive and the induced damage-specific DNA-binding activities. These findings suggest a possible role for this DNA-binding protein complex in lesion recognition and DNA repair of UV-light-induced photoproducts

  8. Essentials of artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Ginsberg, Matt

    1993-01-01

    Since its publication, Essentials of Artificial Intelligence has beenadopted at numerous universities and colleges offering introductory AIcourses at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Based on the author'scourse at Stanford University, the book is an integrated, cohesiveintroduction to the field. The author has a fresh, entertaining writingstyle that combines clear presentations with humor and AI anecdotes. At thesame time, as an active AI researcher, he presents the materialauthoritatively and with insight that reflects a contemporary, first hand

  9. Intelligence in Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Datta, Shoumen Palit Austin

    2016-01-01

    The elusive quest for intelligence in artificial intelligence prompts us to consider that instituting human-level intelligence in systems may be (still) in the realm of utopia. In about a quarter century, we have witnessed the winter of AI (1990) being transformed and transported to the zenith of tabloid fodder about AI (2015). The discussion at hand is about the elements that constitute the canonical idea of intelligence. The delivery of intelligence as a pay-per-use-service, popping out of ...

  10. The intermediates take it all: asymptotics of higher criticism statistics and a powerful alternative based on equal local levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gontscharuk, Veronika; Landwehr, Sandra; Finner, Helmut

    2015-01-01

    The higher criticism (HC) statistic, which can be seen as a normalized version of the famous Kolmogorov-Smirnov statistic, has a long history, dating back to the mid seventies. Originally, HC statistics were used in connection with goodness of fit (GOF) tests but they recently gained some attention in the context of testing the global null hypothesis in high dimensional data. The continuing interest for HC seems to be inspired by a series of nice asymptotic properties related to this statistic. For example, unlike Kolmogorov-Smirnov tests, GOF tests based on the HC statistic are known to be asymptotically sensitive in the moderate tails, hence it is favorably applied for detecting the presence of signals in sparse mixture models. However, some questions around the asymptotic behavior of the HC statistic are still open. We focus on two of them, namely, why a specific intermediate range is crucial for GOF tests based on the HC statistic and why the convergence of the HC distribution to the limiting one is extremely slow. Moreover, the inconsistency in the asymptotic and finite behavior of the HC statistic prompts us to provide a new HC test that has better finite properties than the original HC test while showing the same asymptotics. This test is motivated by the asymptotic behavior of the so-called local levels related to the original HC test. By means of numerical calculations and simulations we show that the new HC test is typically more powerful than the original HC test in normal mixture models. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. Higher Levels of Serum Zonulin May Rather Be Associated with Increased Risk of Obesity and Hyperlipidemia, Than with Gastrointestinal Symptoms or Disease Manifestations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohlsson, Bodil; Orho-Melander, Marju; Nilsson, Peter M

    2017-03-08

    Zonulin is considered a biomarker of increased intestinal permeability, and elevated levels have been found in celiac disease. The primary aim of this study was to examine the association between serum zonulin levels and gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms, and secondarily, between zonulin levels and anthropometric and metabolic factors. The offspring ( n = 363) of the participants of the Malmö Diet and Cancer cardiovascular cohort (MDC-CV) were invited to an anthropometric and clinical examination, where fasting plasma glucose levels were measured. Questionnaires about lifestyle factors and medical history were completed along with the Visual Analog Scale for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (VAS-IBS). Zonulin levels were measured in serum by ELISA. Neither GI symptoms nor GI diseases had any influence on zonulin levels. Higher zonulin levels were associated with higher waist circumference ( p = 0.003), diastolic blood pressure ( p = 0.003), and glucose levels ( p = 0.036). Higher zonulin levels were associated with increased risk of overweight ( p zonulin levels among individuals reporting GI symptoms or GI diseases, but higher zonulin levels are associated with higher waist circumference, diastolic blood pressure, fasting glucose, and increased risk of metabolic diseases.

  12. Higher Levels of Serum Zonulin May Rather Be Associated with Increased Risk of Obesity and Hyperlipidemia, Than with Gastrointestinal Symptoms or Disease Manifestations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bodil Ohlsson

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Zonulin is considered a biomarker of increased intestinal permeability, and elevated levels have been found in celiac disease. The primary aim of this study was to examine the association between serum zonulin levels and gastrointestinal (GI symptoms, and secondarily, between zonulin levels and anthropometric and metabolic factors. The offspring (n = 363 of the participants of the Malmö Diet and Cancer cardiovascular cohort (MDC-CV were invited to an anthropometric and clinical examination, where fasting plasma glucose levels were measured. Questionnaires about lifestyle factors and medical history were completed along with the Visual Analog Scale for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (VAS-IBS. Zonulin levels were measured in serum by ELISA. Neither GI symptoms nor GI diseases had any influence on zonulin levels. Higher zonulin levels were associated with higher waist circumference (p = 0.003, diastolic blood pressure (p = 0.003, and glucose levels (p = 0.036. Higher zonulin levels were associated with increased risk of overweight (p < 0.001, obesity (p = 0.047, and hyperlipidemia (p = 0.048. We cannot detect altered zonulin levels among individuals reporting GI symptoms or GI diseases, but higher zonulin levels are associated with higher waist circumference, diastolic blood pressure, fasting glucose, and increased risk of metabolic diseases.

  13. Portfolio Practices in Higher Education in Norway in an International Perspective: Macro-, Meso- and Micro-Level Influences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dysthe, Olga; Engelsen, Knut Steinar

    2011-01-01

    The point of departure for this article is the "chameleon" aspect of portfolios and the diversity of portfolio models and practices in higher education on the international arena today. Our aim is to investigate the contextual character of this diversity by using Norwegian higher education as an example and to show how macro-level…

  14. Preparing Future Leaders in Higher Education: Excellence Practices from Staff to Mid-Level Management Role Transitions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Erica Sherese

    2016-01-01

    Mid-level leadership is key to a functioning university and it is important that mid-level leaders feel they have the tools and resources they need in order to succeed. To be successful in a new mid-level leadership position, entering supervisors must clearly communicate a strong sense of vision, values, and principles to their staff and establish…

  15. Adaptation of Kirkpatrick's Four Level Model of Training Criteria to Assessment of Learning Outcomes and Program Evaluation in Higher Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Praslova, Ludmila

    2010-01-01

    Assessment of educational effectiveness provides vitally important feedback to Institutions of Higher Education. It also provides important information to external stakeholders, such as prospective students, parents, governmental and local regulatory entities, professional and regional accrediting organizations, and representatives of the…

  16. Electron-impact excitation cross sections of the higher argon 3p5np (n=5,6,7) levels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weber, Tobin; Boffard, John B.; Lin, Chun C.

    2003-01-01

    We have measured the electron-impact excitation cross sections for argon into the ten levels of 3p 5 5p configuration, as well as numerous levels of the 3p 5 6p and 3p 5 7p configurations. Fluorescence from the decay of the excited atoms to the levels of 3p 5 4s configuration was used to determine the optical-emission cross sections. These results were combined with transition probabilities to find apparent cross sections into the 3p 5 5p and 3p 5 6p levels. These new cross sections of the Ar(3p 5 np) levels along with the available Ne(2p 5 3p), Kr(4p 5 5p), and Xe(5p 5 6p) data help provide a global view of the excitation behaviors of the np 5 n ' p levels of the rare-gas series

  17. Higher Education

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Kunle Amuwo: Higher Education Transformation: A Paradigm Shilt in South Africa? ... ty of such skills, especially at the middle management levels within the higher ... istics and virtues of differentiation and diversity. .... may be forced to close shop for lack of capacity to attract ..... necessarily lead to racial and gender equity,.

  18. Assessment of natural radioactivity levels in waters from the higher Ribeira Valley to the southern Sao Paulo state coastal plain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jesus, Sueli Carvalho de

    2010-01-01

    fundamental information on the interaction of sediments, groundwater and estuarine waters. In this project, the distribution of natural Ra isotopes was studied in ix surface, groundwater and estuarine water samples collected from dry and wet seasons (2009 - 2010) campaigns performed in Ribeira Valley, Southern Sao Paulo State. The inventory allowed the application of Ra isotopes as tracers of fluvial and groundwater discharges to the Cananeia-Iguape estuarine complex. The exchange of groundwater/surface water in Ribeira do Iguape River basin and related fluxes of several constituents for the Cananeia-Iguape estuarine complex mass balance is still not very well known. The results obtained in this research work evidenced that there is a prevalence of 228 Ra isotope in all the set of samples analyzed. However, the activity concentrations of Ra isotopes determined from Higher Ribeira Valley through the Southern Coastal Plain of Sao Paulo are representative of natural background levels, showing low or minimal human intervention. In the set of samples collected along Ribeira do Iguape River, Cananeia and Iguape outlets, the higher concentrations of Ra were observed in bottom waters, indicating the diffusion of 228 Ra from sediments recently deposited as a potential source of the increased concentrations of this isotope when compared with others. The activity concentrations of the short-lived Ra isotopes were negligible, lower than the limit of the detection. Fluxes of Ra for Cananeia outlet are strongly influenced by tidal oscillations, which modulate the increase and decrease of Ra concentrations in response of the respective increase and decrease of waters salinity. In Iguape outlet and in hydrochemical stations performed along Ribeira do Iguape River it was observed a linear relationship between the amount of suspended matter and the increase of 228 Ra activity concentration. When we evaluate qualitatively the differences in behavior of both long-lived Ra isotopes, the

  19. Radiological observation: 'remanence of radioactivity of artificial origin'. Mission report 2016

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aubry, S.; Boulet, B.; Cagnat, X.; Cossonnet, C.; Mekhlouche, D.; Thomas, S.; Vivien, C.; Chevreuil, M.; Malfait, V.; Manach, E.; Claval, D.; Mourier, D.; Pourcelot, L.; Salaun, G.; Metivier, J.M.

    2016-04-01

    Thirty years after the Chernobyl accident, some areas in France, mainly mountain areas, display radioactivity levels higher or even much higher than those noticed in other areas, even at the vicinity of nuclear plants. These areas are called 'areas of remanence of artificial radioactivity'. After having recalled this observation based on radiological measurements, and an overview of an atmospheric deposition of artificial radioactivity (nuclear tests, Chernobyl accident, satellite falls, Fukushima accident), this report describes the adopted strategy (sampling and measurements) to assess and study this phenomenon. It analyses the obtained results in terms of remanence in the continental water environment and in soils, fields and forests. It also proposes a synthesis of previously acquired results. Appendices present methods used for sampling and sample processing, a list of samples, data related to mass activity of artificial radioactivity in soils, inventories of artificial radioactivity in soils, and methods for the calculation of efficient doses

  20. Artificial Neural Network forecasting of storm surge water levels at major estuarine ports to supplement national tide-surge models and improve port resilience planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Jon; Mawdsley, Robert; Fujiyama, Taku; Achuthan, Kamal

    2017-04-01

    Effective prediction of tidal storm surge is of considerable importance for operators of major ports, since much of their infrastructure is necessarily located close to sea level. Storm surge inundation can damage critical elements of this infrastructure and significantly disrupt port operations and downstream supply chains. The risk of surge inundation is typically approached using extreme value analysis, while short-term forecasting generally relies on coastal shelf-scale tide and surge models. However, extreme value analysis does not provide information on the duration of a surge event and can be sensitive to the assumptions made and the historic data available. Also, whilst regional tide and surge models perform well along open coasts, their fairly coarse spatial resolution means that they do not always provide accurate predictions for estuarine ports. As part of a NERC Environmental Risks to Infrastructure Innovation Programme project, we have developed a tool that is specifically designed to forecast the North Sea storm surges on major ports along the east coast of the UK. Of particular interest is the Port of Immingham, Humber estuary, which handles the largest volume of bulk cargo in the UK including major flows of coal and biomass for power generation. A tidal surge in December 2013, with an estimated return period of 760 years, partly flooded the port, damaged infrastructure and disrupted operations for several weeks. This and other recent surge events highlight the need for additional tools to supplement the national UK Storm Tide Warning Service. Port operators are also keen to have access to less computationally expensive forecasting tools for scenario planning and to improve their resilience to actual events. In this paper, we demonstrate the potential of machine learning methods based on Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) to generate accurate short-term forecasts of extreme water levels at estuarine North Sea ports such as Immingham. An ANN is

  1. Hierarchy of higher-level physical functions: a longitudinal investigation on a nationally representative population of community-dwelling middle-aged and elderly persons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeh, Chih-Jung; Wang, Ching-Yi; Tang, Pei-Fang; Lee, Meng-Chih; Lin, Hui-Sheng; Chen, Hui-Ya

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the hierarchy of higher-level physical functions to infer disability level (mild, moderate or severe) is essential for the precise targeting of preventive interventions and has been examined previously in a cross-sectional study. Based on longitudinal data, this study evaluated the hierarchy of higher-level physical functions. Data from a cohort of 2729 community-dwelling persons aged over 50 with no initial disability were drawn from the "Survey of Health and Living Status of the Elderly in Taiwan" from 1996 through 2007. The three-level hierarchy of eight chosen activities was examined by the median ages to disability onset with survival analyses and by Cox regressions, which examined the effects of sex and age on the development of this hierarchy. The progression of incident disability was as follows: mild level-running, carrying weight, and squatting; moderate level-climbing stairs, walking, and standing; and severe level-grasping and raising arms up. Women and older persons were at greater risk of developing more severe levels of disability. Another Cox regression with one index activity from each hierarchical level revealed similar results. The three-level hierarchy of higher-level physical functions has been validated longitudinally, suggesting rich research and clinical implications.

  2. Circulating cortisol levels after exogenous cortisol administration are higher in women using hormonal contraceptives: data from two preliminary studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaffey, Allison E; Wirth, Michelle M; Hoks, Roxanne M; Jahn, Allison L; Abercrombie, Heather C

    2014-07-01

    Exogenous cortisol administration has been used to test the influence of glucocorticoids on a variety of outcomes, including memory and affect. Careful control of factors known to influence cortisol and other endogenous hormone levels is central to the success of this research. While the use of hormonal birth control (HBC) is known to exert many physiological effects, including decreasing the salivary cortisol response to stress, it is unknown how HBC influences circulating cortisol levels after exogenous cortisol administration. To determine those effects, we examined the role of HBC on participants' cortisol levels after receiving synthetic cortisol (hydrocortisone) in two separate studies. In Study 1, 24 healthy women taking HBC and 26 healthy men were administered a 0.1 mg/kg body weight intravenous dose of hydrocortisone, and plasma cortisol levels were measured over 3 h. In Study 2, 61 participants (34 women; 16 were on HBC) received a 15 mg hydrocortisone pill, and salivary cortisol levels were measured over 6 h. Taken together, results from these studies suggest that HBC use is associated with a greater cortisol increase following cortisol administration. These data have important methodological implications: (1) when given a controlled dose of hydrocortisone, cortisol levels may increase more dramatically in women taking HBC versus women not on HBC or men; and (2) in studies manipulating cortisol levels, women on hormonal contraceptives should be investigated as a separate group.

  3. "Monkey in a Cage": The Complicated Loyalties of Mid-Level Academic Women Working in Higher Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vongalis-Macrow, Athena

    2012-01-01

    Loyalty raises a dilemma for women's career progression and leadership because it signals confidence in the organisation, despite the ongoing constraints that organisations present for women and their leadership aspirations. The research investigates women's loyalty in the context of higher education. Focussing on a select group of mid-level…

  4. DIFFERENT LEVEL OF LEARNED-HELPLESSNESS AMONG HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS WITH LOWER GRADE AND HIGHER GRADE IN SALATIGA INDONESIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Berta Esti Ari Prasetya

    2013-06-01

    consisted of 190 of higher grade students and 127 of lower grade students. Mann-Whitney U was used to analyse the data, considering that the data were not normally distributed. This test result showed that there was a significant difference between high school students with higher grade and lower grade (the Mann-Whitney U coefficient of 10,644, with z value of -1795, p <0.05 (p = 0036, 1-tailed, with students of lower grade tend to be more prone to experience learned-helplessness. Additional results from their subjective perception on their achievement were also discussed and so were the implications of the study.

  5. Higher Education Outcomes at the National Level on the Example of the Project “Collegiate Learning Assessment”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabelnikova E. V.

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available We discuss the interpretation of the concept of “learning outcomes”. Theoretical analysis widely represents the interpretations of the learning outcomes of a high school student: academic skills: understanding, application of knowledge to solve problems, synthesis, analysis and evaluation; basic skills and basic knowledge, and skills of a higher order and advanced knowledge; skills of a higher order represented as a system of critical thinking, analytic reasoning, problem solving and written communication; wide abilities interpreted as verbal, quantitative and spatial thinking, understanding, problem solving and decision making. We conclude that each considered approach distinguishes meta-subjective skills, i.e. skills to interact with the quality of information regardless of the context. The ability to measure the meta-skills is discussed on an example of the “Collegiate learning assessment”, realized in the United States

  6. Basic and Meal Stimulated Plasma GIP Levels are Higher in Lean PCOS Women with FAI over 5.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milewicz, T; Migacz, K; Kiałka, M; Rogatko, I; Kowalczuk, A; Spalkowska, M; Mrozińska, S; Czajkowska, Z; Sztefko, K

    2016-02-01

    Glucose dependent insulinotropic peptide (GIP) belongs to the incretins which are responsible for 70% of the insulin release after oral glucose intake. Its impaired secretion was noted in several conditions involving insulin resistance, including polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), known as the state with increased testosterone level. This paper considers a possible relationship between the free androgen index (FAI) and basal as well as meal stimulated level of GIP in lean women affected by PCOS. To our knowledge, no previous study has evaluated the matter so far. cross-sectional study 50 age-matched lean women (BMI=20.76±1.83) were enrolled to the study and divided into 2 groups. Patients with phenotype with FAIPCOS patients with FAI>5 formed group 2. All subjects underwent standard meal test. Serum GIP concentration was determined both at fasting and at 60 min of the test. Calculations were carried out using Statistica 10. Mann-Whitney test indicated a statistically significant difference in medians values of GIP plasma levels between groups on fasting (36.4 pg/ml vs. 59.6 pg/ml; p=0.0007) and at 60 min after meal test (50.1 pg/ml vs. 72.5 pg/ml; p=0.006). Spearman test indicated significant positive correlation between FAI and GIP levels at 0' and 60' in total study population (0':R=0.37;p=0.008; 60':R=0.28; p=0.049). Excess androgen activity might be a factor contributing to alter secretion of incretins in lean PCOS women. However it could not be ruled out that it is also possible that increased GIP levels might induce hyperandrogenemia in PCOS. An increased GIP levels may induce hyperinsulinemia and play an additive to insulin resistance role in progression to diabetes mellitus type 2 (DMT2). © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  7. Effect of Li level, artificial aging, and TiB2 reinforcement on the fracture toughness of Weldalite (tm) 049-type alloys

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-01-01

    Plane strain fracture toughness (K sub IC) was evaluated for Weldalite (tm) 049 with and without TiB2 reinforcement. For the nonreinforced variant, changes in toughness were measured for various aging conditions and lithium levels. Toughness testing was carried out on fatigue precracked compact tension (CT) specimens at 24 C, as per ASTM standard E-399. Toughness was measured as a function of aging time at 160 C for the two Weldalite 049(1.3) heats. The composition of these heats differed only in that 0.03 wt pct. Ti was added to one as an additional grain refiner. Both heats showed a decrease in toughness with increasing aging time, although toughness values for one were significantly higher than for the other. This greater toughness may be due to a subtle change in the grain size resulting for the presence of Ti or, alternatively, to differences in texture or substructure formed during extrusion.

  8. Is Intelligence Artificial?

    OpenAIRE

    Greer, Kieran

    2014-01-01

    Our understanding of intelligence is directed primarily at the level of human beings. This paper attempts to give a more unifying definition that can be applied to the natural world in general. The definition would be used more to verify a degree of intelligence, not to quantify it and might help when making judgements on the matter. A version of an accepted test for AI is then put forward as the 'acid test' for Artificial Intelligence itself. It might be what a free-thinking program or robot...

  9. The Relationship between Listening Comprehension of Text and Sentences in Preschoolers: Specific or Mediated by Lower and Higher Level Components?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Florit, Elena; Roch, Maja; Levorato, M. Chiara

    2013-01-01

    Two studies explored the relation between listening comprehension of text and listening comprehension of sentences in preschoolers aged 4 to 5 years, 11 months. The first study analyzed this relationship taking into account the role of lower level components, namely, word knowledge and verbal working memory, as possible mediators. These components…

  10. The Effects of Using Concept Mapping for Improving Advanced Level Biology Students' Lower- and Higher-Order Cognitive Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bramwell-Lalor, Sharon; Rainford, Marcia

    2014-01-01

    This paper reports on teachers' use of concept mapping as an alternative assessment strategy in advanced level biology classes and its effects on students' cognitive skills on selected biology concepts. Using a mixed methods approach, the study employed a pre-test/post-test quasi-experimental design involving 156 students and 8 teachers from…

  11. Dietary lipids do not contribute to the higher hepatic triglyceride levels of fructose- compared to glucose-fed mice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nunes, P.M.; Wright, A.J.; Veltien, A.A.; Asten, J.J.A. van; Tack, C.J.J.; Jones, J.G.; Heerschap, A.

    2014-01-01

    Fructose consumption has been associated with the surge in obesity and dyslipidemia. This may be mediated by the fructose effects on hepatic lipids and ATP levels. Fructose metabolism provides carbons for de novo lipogenesis (DNL) and stimulates enterocyte secretion of apoB48. Thus, fructose-induced

  12. Higher levels of salivary MUC5B and MUC7 in individuals with gastric diseases who harbor Helicobacter pylori

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Silva, D.G.; Stevens, R.H.; Macedo, J.M.B.; Hirata, R.; Pinto, A.C.; Alves, L.M.; Veerman, E.C.I.; Tinoco, E.M.B.

    2009-01-01

    Objective: The aim of the present study was to assess the salivary levels of MUC5B and MUC7 in individuals with dyspeptic disease and Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) in the stomach, compared to individuals without dyspeptic disease. Methods: 30 individuals with dyspeptic disease, who underwent

  13. Are lower levels of physical activity and self-rated fitness associated with higher levels of psychological distress in Croatian young adults? A cross-sectional study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lovro Štefan

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Background Although previous evidence has shown that physical activity and physical fitness lower the level of psychological distress, little is known of simultaneous associations between of physical activity and physical fitness and with psychological distress, especially in young adults. Therefore, the main purpose of the present study was to explore both separate and simultaneous association between physical activity and physical fitness with psychological distress. Methods Participants in this cross-sectional study were 2,100 university students (1,041 men and 1,059 women chosen from eight faculties in the city of Zagreb. Physical activity, physical fitness and psychological distress were assessed using structured questionnaires. The associations were examined using logistic regression analysis. Results After adjusting for gender, body-mass index, self-rated health, material status, binge drinking, chronic disease/s and sleep quality, “insufficient” physical activity (OR = 2.60; 95% CI [1.92–3.52] and “lower” levels of physical fitness (tertile 2; OR = 1.94; 95% CI [1.25–3.01] and tertile 1; OR = 2.59; 95% CI [1.65–4.08] remained associated with “high” psychological distress. When physical activity and physical fitness were entered simultaneously into the model, “insufficient” physical activity (OR = 2.35; 95% CI [1.72–3.21] and “lower” levels of physical fitness (tertile 2; OR = 1.77; 95% CI [1.24–2.77] and tertile 1; OR = 2.00; 95% CI [1.26–3.20] remained associated with “high” psychological distress. Conclusion Our study shows that both “insufficient” physical activity and “lower” levels of physical fitness are associated with “high” psychological distress, even after adjusting for numerous covariates. Therefore, special policies aiming to increase the levels of physical activity and fitness are warranted.

  14. Higher percent body fat in young women with lower physical activity level and greater proportion Pacific Islander ancestry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Black, Nate; Nabokov, Vanessa; Vijayadeva, Vinutha; Novotny, Rachel

    2011-11-01

    Samoan women exhibit high rates of obesity, which can possibly be attenuated through diet and physical activity. Obesity, and body fatness in particular, is associated with increased risk for chronic diseases. Ancestry, physical activity, and dietary patterns have been associated with body composition. Using a cross-sectional design, the relative importance of proportion of Pacific Islander (PI) ancestry, level of physical activity, and macronutrients among healthy women in Honolulu, Hawai'i, ages 18 to 28 years was examined. All data were collected between January 2003 and December 2004. Percent body fat (%BF) was determined by whole body dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Nutrient data were derived from a three-day food record. Means and standard deviations were computed for all variables of interest. Bivariate correlation analysis was used to determine correlates of %BF. Multiple regression analysis was used to determine relative contribution of variables significantly associated with %BF. Proportion of PI ancestry was significantly positively associated with %BF (P=0.0001). Physical activity level was significantly negatively associated with %BF (P=0.0006). Intervention to increase physical activity level of young Samoan women may be effective to decrease body fat and improve health. CRC-NIH grant: 0216.

  15. D-fence Against the Canadian Winter: Making Insufficient Vitamin D Levels a Higher Priority for Public Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer D. Zwicker

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available With most of the country situated above the latitude of the 42nd parallel north, there is a significant portion of the Canadian population that is not getting enough of the sunshine vitamin during the winter. Vitamin D is naturally produced when skin is exposed to sunlight, however during the winter months in Canada the sun is too low in the sky for this to occur. A full quarter of the Canadian population is estimated to have vitamin D levels so low as to be considered insufficient or deficient by Health Canada guidelines. Increasing vitamin D intake should be considered a public health priority. Vitamin D deficiency is known to be linked to rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults (bone softening and malformation as well as osteoporosis (loss of bone density, increasing susceptibility to fractures. However a growing body of evidence also suggests that vitamin D may have a role in the prevention of chronic diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, cognitive decline, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and arthritis. There is, of course, no way to change Canada’s proximity to the equator. But there are ways to help Canadians get more vitamin D through dietary intake. Improving the vitamin D status of the Canadian population through food fortification and dietary supplements represents an inexpensive intervention that can improve the health of the population, but debate remains over how much vitamin D the Canadian population needs and how to ensure the population adheres to whatever recommendations are made. Food fortification has already demonstrated its effectiveness in improving vitamin D levels (as it has for other public health priorities, such as with iodized salt. Decades ago, the prevalence of rickets in Canadian children led health professionals to lobby for, and win, legislation making vitamin D fortification mandatory for milk. Other foods, such as orange juice, milk of plant origin and

  16. Artificial light at night inhibits mating in a Geometrid moth

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Geffen, Koert G.; van Eck, Emiel; de Boer, Rens A.; van Grunsven, Roy H.A.; Salis, Lucia; Berendse, Frank; Veenendaal, Elmar M.

    2015-01-01

    * Levels of artificial night lighting are increasing rapidly worldwide, subjecting nocturnal organisms to a major change in their environment. Many moth species are strongly attracted to sources of artificial night lighting, with potentially severe, yet poorly studied, consequences for development,

  17. Progress and Challenge of Artificial Intelligence

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhong-Zhi Shi; Nan-Ning Zheng

    2006-01-01

    Artificial Intelligence (AI) is generally considered to be a subfield of computer science, that is concerned to attempt simulation, extension and expansion of human intelligence. Artificial intelligence has enjoyed tremendous success over the last fifty years. In this paper we only focus on visual perception, granular computing, agent computing, semantic grid. Human-level intelligence is the long-term goal of artificial intelligence. We should do joint research on basic theory and technology of intelligence by brain science, cognitive science, artificial intelligence and others. A new cross discipline intelligence science is undergoing a rapid development. Future challenges are given in final section.

  18. Higher levels of Zidovudine resistant HIV in the colon compared to blood and other gastrointestinal compartments in HIV infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    van Marle Guido

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT is the largest lymphoid organ infected by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1. It serves as a viral reservoir and host-pathogen interface in infection. This study examined whether different parts of the gut and peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL contain different drug-resistant HIV-1 variants. Methods Gut biopsies (esophagus, stomach, duodenum and colon and PBL were obtained from 8 HIV-1 infected preHAART (highly active antiretroviral therapy patients at three visits over 18 months. Patients received AZT, ddI or combinations of AZT/ddI. HIV-1 Reverse transcriptase (RT-coding sequences were amplified from viral DNA obtained from gut tissues and PBL, using nested PCR. The PCR fragments were cloned and sequenced. The resulting sequences were subjected to phylogenetic analyses, and antiretroviral drug mutations were identified. Results Phylogenetic and drug mutation analyses revealed differential distribution of drug resistant mutations in the gut within patients. The level of drug-resistance conferred by the RT sequences was significantly different between different gut tissues and PBL, and varied with antiretroviral therapy. The sequences conferring the highest level of drug-resistance to AZT were found in the colon. Conclusion This study confirms that different drug-resistant HIV-1 variants are present in different gut tissues, and it is the first report to document that particular gut tissues may select for drug resistant HIV-1 variants.

  19. Lower Plasma Fetuin-A Levels Are Associated With a Higher Mortality Risk in Patients With Coronary Artery Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xuechen; Zhang, Yuan; Chen, Qian; Li, Qing; Li, Yanping; Ling, Wenhua

    2017-11-01

    The present study was designed to evaluate the association of circulating fetuin-A with cardiovascular disease (CVD) and all-cause mortality. We measured plasma fetuin-A in 1620 patients using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kit. The patients were members of the Guangdong coronary artery disease cohort and were recruited between October 2008 and December 2011. Cox regression models were used to estimate the association between plasma fetuin-A and the risk of mortality. A total of 206 deaths were recorded during a median follow-up of 5.9 years, 146 of whom died from CVD. The hazard ratios for the second and third tertiles of the fetuin-A levels (using the first tertile as a reference) were 0.65 (95% confidence interval, 0.44-0.96) and 0.51 (95% confidence interval, 0.33-0.78) for CVD mortality ( P =0.005) and 0.65 (95% confidence interval, 0.47-0.91) and 0.48 (95% confidence interval, 0.33-0.70) for all-cause mortality ( P <0.001), respectively. Lower plasma fetuin-A levels were associated with an increased risk of all-cause and CVD mortality in patients with coronary artery disease independently of traditional CVD risk factors. © 2017 American Heart Association, Inc.

  20. Isotopic niche variation in a higher trophic level ectotherm: highlighting the role of succulent plants in desert food webs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Delibes

    Full Text Available Stable isotope analysis of animal tissues allows description of isotopic niches, whose axes in an n-dimensional space are the isotopic ratios, compared to a standard, of different isotope systems (e.g. δ(13C, δ(15N. Isotopic niches are informative about where an animal, population or species lives and about what it consumes. Here we describe inter- and intrapopulation isotopic niche (bidimensional δ(13C-δ(15N space of the Orange-throated whiptail (Aspidoscelis hyperythra, an arthropodivorous small lizard, in ten localities of Baja California Sur (Mexico. These localities range from extreme arid to subtropical conditions. Between 13 and 20 individuals were sampled at each locality and 1 cm of tail-tip was collected for isotope analysis. As expected, interpopulation niche width variation was much larger than intrapopulation one. Besides, isotopic variation was not related to age, sex or individual size of lizards. This suggests geographic variation of the isotopic niche was related to changes in the basal resources that fuel the trophic web at each locality. The position of Bayesian isotope ellipses in the δ-space indicated that whiptails in more arid localities were enriched in 13C, suggesting most of the carbon they ingested came from CAM succulent plants (cacti, agaves and in minor degree in C4 grasses. Contrarily, whiptails in subtropical areas were depleted in 13C, as they received more carbon from C3 scrubs and trees. Localities closer to sea-level tended to be enriched in 15N, but a clear influence of marine subsidies was detected only at individual level. The study contributes to identify the origin and pathways through which energy flows across the trophic webs of North American deserts.

  1. Isotopic Niche Variation in a Higher Trophic Level Ectotherm: Highlighting the Role of Succulent Plants in Desert Food Webs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delibes, Miguel; Blazquez, Ma Carmen; Fedriani, Jose Maria; Granados, Arsenio; Soriano, Laura; Delgado, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Stable isotope analysis of animal tissues allows description of isotopic niches, whose axes in an n-dimensional space are the isotopic ratios, compared to a standard, of different isotope systems (e.g. δ13C, δ15N). Isotopic niches are informative about where an animal, population or species lives and about what it consumes. Here we describe inter- and intrapopulation isotopic niche (bidimensional δ13C-δ15N space) of the Orange-throated whiptail (Aspidoscelis hyperythra), an arthropodivorous small lizard, in ten localities of Baja California Sur (Mexico). These localities range from extreme arid to subtropical conditions. Between 13 and 20 individuals were sampled at each locality and 1 cm of tail-tip was collected for isotope analysis. As expected, interpopulation niche width variation was much larger than intrapopulation one. Besides, isotopic variation was not related to age, sex or individual size of lizards. This suggests geographic variation of the isotopic niche was related to changes in the basal resources that fuel the trophic web at each locality. The position of Bayesian isotope ellipses in the δ-space indicated that whiptails in more arid localities were enriched in 13C, suggesting most of the carbon they ingested came from CAM succulent plants (cacti, agaves) and in minor degree in C4 grasses. Contrarily, whiptails in subtropical areas were depleted in 13C, as they received more carbon from C3 scrubs and trees. Localities closer to sea-level tended to be enriched in 15N, but a clear influence of marine subsidies was detected only at individual level. The study contributes to identify the origin and pathways through which energy flows across the trophic webs of North American deserts. PMID:25973609

  2. Empathic Accuracy in Male Adolescents with Conduct Disorder and Higher versus Lower Levels of Callous-Unemotional Traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Key, N; Brown, T; Fairchild, G

    2017-10-01

    Adolescents with disruptive behavior disorders are reported to show deficits in empathy and emotion recognition. However, prior studies have mainly used questionnaires to measure empathy or experimental paradigms that are lacking in ecological validity. We used an empathic accuracy (EA) task to study EA, emotion recognition, and affective empathy in 77 male adolescents aged 13-18 years: 37 with Conduct Disorder (CD) and 40 typically-developing controls. The CD sample was divided into higher callous-emotional traits (CD/CU+) and lower callous-unemotional traits (CD/CU-) subgroups using a median split. Participants watched films of actors recalling happy, sad, surprised, angry, disgusted or fearful autobiographical experiences and provided continuous ratings of emotional intensity (assessing EA), as well as naming the emotion (recognition) and reporting the emotion they experienced themselves (affective empathy). The CD and typically-developing groups did not significantly differ in EA and there were also no differences between the CD/CU+ and CD/CU- subgroups. Participants with CD were significantly less accurate than controls in recognizing sadness, fear, and disgust, all ps sadness, fear, and disgust relative to controls, all ps < 0.010, rs ≥ 0.33, whereas the CD/CU+ and CD/CU- subgroups did not differ in affective empathy. These results extend prior research by demonstrating affective empathy and emotion recognition deficits in adolescents with CD using a more ecologically-valid task, and challenge the view that affective empathy deficits are specific to CD/CU+.

  3. Leveling the Playing Field: Assessment of Gross Motor Skills in Low Socioeconomic Children to their Higher Socioeconomic Counterparts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan M. Adkins

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: Fundamental movements (FM of children influence the willingness to engage in physical activity (PA. Thus, proper FM skills are the foundation for a lifespan of PA. Objective: This study examined what factors may affect children’s PA in relation to FM pattern capabilities. Methods: The study examined the influence of SES when three low-income schools were provided additional PA opportunities on days PE was not taught. FM patterns in relation to object control (OC and locomotor skill (LC development were evaluated on K (n = 871, 1st (n = 893, and 2nd graders (n = 829 using the Test of Gross Motor Development-2 (TGMD-2 instrument (Ulrich, 2000. Schools were dichotomized and categorized as being low SES (n = 2008 and high SES (n = 578 status. Results: A significant relationship was revealed with LC (r = 0.264; p = 0.001, OC (r = 0.171; p = 0.001, and total TGMD-2 (r = 0.264; p = 0.001. Low and high SES schools significantly improved overall TGMD-2 scores. High SES schools children were significantly higher in LC [F, (2, 1272 = 29.31, p = 0.001], OC [F, (2, 1272 = 23.14, p = 0.001], and total TGMD-2 [F, (1, 1272 = 38.11, p = 0.001]. Conclusion: Low SES schools need to concentrate on PA-based activities to engage students in FM patterns, to help narrow the gap in FM capabilities. In addition, the increase in PA opportunities for lower SES schools could positively impact brain function, cardiovascular fitness, and overall well-being.

  4. Artificial Hydration and Nutrition

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Crisis Situations Pets and Animals myhealthfinder Food and Nutrition Healthy Food Choices Weight Loss and Diet Plans ... Your Health Resources Healthcare Management Artificial Hydration and Nutrition Artificial Hydration and Nutrition Share Print Patients who ...

  5. Artificial Disc Replacement

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Spondylolisthesis BLOG FIND A SPECIALIST Treatments Artificial Disc Replacement (ADR) Patient Education Committee Jamie Baisden The disc ... Disc An artificial disc (also called a disc replacement, disc prosthesis or spine arthroplasty device) is a ...

  6. Improvement design study on steam generator of MHR-50/100 aiming higher safety level after water ingress accident

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oyama, S.; Minatsuki, I.; Shimizu, K.

    2012-01-01

    Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) has been studying on MHI original High Temperature Gas cooled Reactor (HTGR), namely MHR-50/100, for commercialization with supported by JAEA. In the heat transfer system, steam generator (SG) is one of the most important components because it should be imposed a function of heat transfer from reactor power to steam turbine system and maintaining a nuclear grade boundary. Then we especially focused an effort of a design study on the SG having robustness against water ingress accident based on our design experience of PWR, FBR and HTGR. In this study, we carried out a sensitivity analysis from the view point of economic and plant efficiency. As a result, the SG design parameter of helium inlet/outlet temperature of 750 deg. C/300 deg. C, a side-by-side layout and one unit of SG attached to a reactor were selected. In the next, a design improvement of SG was carried out from the view point of securing the level of inherent safety without reliance on active steam dump system during water ingress accident considering the situation of the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster on March 11, 2011. Finally, according to above basic design requirement to SG, we performed a conceptual design on adapting themes of SG structure improvement. (authors)

  7. Artificial sweeteners

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, John Christian

    2012-01-01

    Low-calorie sweeteners are authorised food additives in the European Union (EU). The safety of these sweeteners has been evaluated in accordance with internationally agreed principles for the safety evaluation of food additives. In the EU, the European Commission’s Scientific Committee for Food...... (SCF) was the scientific guarantor for the safety of food additives until March 2003. Since then this has been taken over by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), notably its Scientific Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources Added to Food (ANS Panel). Based on the large number...... of toxicological studies that are requested for the safety evaluation of food additives, a no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) is identified for the most sensitive effect in the most sensitive animal species. A safety factor of 100 is normally applied to the NOAEL in order to establish an acceptable daily...

  8. Artificial life and Piaget.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Ulrich; Grobman, K H.

    2003-04-01

    Artificial life provides important theoretical and methodological tools for the investigation of Piaget's developmental theory. This new method uses artificial neural networks to simulate living phenomena in a computer. A recent study by Parisi and Schlesinger suggests that artificial life might reinvigorate the Piagetian framework. We contrast artificial life with traditional cognitivist approaches, discuss the role of innateness in development, and examine the relation between physiological and psychological explanations of intelligent behaviour.

  9. Lower Serum DHEAS levels are associated with a higher degree of physical disability and depressive symptoms in middle-aged to older African American women

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haren, Matthew T.; Malmstrom, Theodore K.; Banks, William A.; Patrick, Ping; Miller, Douglas K.; Morley, John E.

    2007-01-01

    Background Changes in androgen levels and associations with chronic disease, physical and neuropsychological function and disability in women over the middle to later years of life are not well understood and have not been extensively studied in African-American women. Aims The present cross-sectional analysis reports such levels and associations in community dwelling, African American women aged 49 – 65 years from St. Louis, Missouri. Methods A home-based physical examination and a health status questionnaire were administered to randomly sampled women. Body composition (DEXA), lower limb and hand-grip muscle strength, physical and neuropsychological function and disability levels were assessed. Blood was drawn and assayed for total testosterone (T), sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG), dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate (DHEAS), oestradiol (E2), adiponectin, leptin, triglycerides, glucose, C-reactive protein (CRP) and cytokine receptors (sIL2r, sIL6r, sTNFr1 & sTNFr2). Multiple linear regression modelling was used to identify the best predictors of testosterone, DHEAS and Free Androgen Index (T/SHBG). Results Seventy-four percent of women were menopausal and a quarter of these were taking oestrogen therapy. DHEAS and E2 declined between the ages of 49 and 65 years, whereas total T, SHBG and FAI remained stable. Total T and DHEAS levels were strongly correlated. In this population sample there were no independent associations of either total T or FAI with indicators of functional limitations, disability or clinically relevant depressive symptoms. Unlike total T and FAI, lower DHEAS levels was independently associated with both higher IADL scores (indicating a higher degree of physical disability) and higher CESD scores (indicating a higher degree of clinically relevant depressive symptoms). Conclusion There is an age-related decline in serum DHEAS in African-American women. Lower DHEAS levels appear to be associated with a higher degree of physical disability and

  10. Protein-Level Integration Strategy of Multiengine MS Spectra Search Results for Higher Confidence and Sequence Coverage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Panpan; Zhong, Jiayong; Liu, Wanting; Zhao, Jing; Zhang, Gong

    2017-12-01

    Multiple search engines based on various models have been developed to search MS/MS spectra against a reference database, providing different results for the same data set. How to integrate these results efficiently with minimal compromise on false discoveries is an open question due to the lack of an independent, reliable, and highly sensitive standard. We took the advantage of the translating mRNA sequencing (RNC-seq) result as a standard to evaluate the integration strategies of the protein identifications from various search engines. We used seven mainstream search engines (Andromeda, Mascot, OMSSA, X!Tandem, pFind, InsPecT, and ProVerB) to search the same label-free MS data sets of human cell lines Hep3B, MHCCLM3, and MHCC97H from the Chinese C-HPP Consortium for Chromosomes 1, 8, and 20. As expected, the union of seven engines resulted in a boosted false identification, whereas the intersection of seven engines remarkably decreased the identification power. We found that identifications of at least two out of seven engines resulted in maximizing the protein identification power while minimizing the ratio of suspicious/translation-supported identifications (STR), as monitored by our STR index, based on RNC-Seq. Furthermore, this strategy also significantly improves the peptides coverage of the protein amino acid sequence. In summary, we demonstrated a simple strategy to significantly improve the performance for shotgun mass spectrometry by protein-level integrating multiple search engines, maximizing the utilization of the current MS spectra without additional experimental work.

  11. Higher B-cell activating factor levels at birth are positively associated with maternal dairy farm exposure and negatively related to allergy development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lundell, Anna-Carin; Hesselmar, Bill; Nordström, Inger; Adlerberth, Ingegerd; Wold, Agnes E; Rudin, Anna

    2015-10-01

    A high proportion of circulating immature/naive CD5(+) B cells during early infancy is a risk factor for allergy development. B-cell activating factor (BAFF) is an important cytokine for B-cell maturation. We sought to investigate whether BAFF levels are related to environmental exposures during pregnancy and early childhood and whether BAFF levels are associated with postnatal B-cell maturation and allergic disease. In the FARMFLORA study, including both farming and nonfarming families, we measured BAFF levels in plasma from mothers and their children at birth and at 1, 4, 18, and 36 months of age. Infants' blood samples were also analyzed for B-cell numbers and proportions of CD5(+) and CD27(+) B cells. Allergic disease was clinically evaluated at 18 and 36 months of age. Circulating BAFF levels were maximal at birth, and farmers' children had higher BAFF levels than nonfarmers' children. Higher BAFF levels at birth were positively associated with proportions of CD27(+) memory B cells among farmers' children and inversely related to proportions of CD5(+) immature/naive B cells among nonfarmers' children. Children with allergic disease at 18 months of age had lower cord blood BAFF levels than nonallergic children. At birth, girls had higher BAFF levels and lower proportions of CD5(+) B cells than boys. Farm exposure during pregnancy appears to induce BAFF production in the newborn child, and high neonatal BAFF levels were associated with more accelerated postnatal B-cell maturation, which lend further strength to the role of B cells in the hygiene hypothesis. Copyright © 2015 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. The relationship between career mobility and occupational expertise. A retrospective study among higher-level Dutch professionals in three age groups

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Heijden, Beatrice

    2003-01-01

    The present study investigates the relationship between two career-related variables and occupational expertise of higher-level employees from large working organisations in three different age groups. The factors in question are: total number of jobs that have been performed; and the average period

  13. Factors Affecting the State Anxiety Level of Higher Education Students in Macau: The Impact of Trait Anxiety and Self-Esteem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheung, Hoi-Yan

    2006-01-01

    The aim of this study is to find out the levels of anxiety of 589 day- and night-class students in higher education in Macau two weeks before the final examination period. The Chinese version of the 40-item Spielberger's State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (Spielberger, Gorsuch & Lusherier, 1970) was applied in this study. The two anxiety scales are…

  14. Preadipocyte Factor-1 Levels Are Higher in Women with Hypothalamic Amenorrhea and Are Associated with Bone Mineral Content and Bone Mineral Density through a Mechanism Independent of Leptin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aronis, Konstantinos N.; Kilim, Holly; Chamberland, John P.; Breggia, Anne; Rosen, Clifford

    2011-01-01

    Context: Preadipocyte factor 1 (pref-1) is increased in anorexia nervosa and is associated negatively with bone mineral density (BMD). No previous studies exist on pref-1 in women with exercise-induced hypothalamic amenorrhea (HA), which similar to anorexia nervosa, is an energy-deficiency state associated with hypoleptinemia. Objective: Our objective was to evaluate whether pref-1 levels are also elevated and associated with low BMD and to assess whether leptin regulates pref-1 levels in women with HA. Design: Study 1 was a double-blinded, placebo-controlled randomized clinical trial of metreleptin administration in women with HA. Study 2 was an open-label study of metreleptin administration in low physiological, supraphysiological, and pharmacological doses in healthy women volunteers. Setting and Patients: At Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, 20 women with HA and leptin levels higher than 5 ng/ml and nine healthy control women participated in study 1, and five healthy women participated in study 2. Intervention: For study 1, 20 HA subjects were randomized to receive either 0.08 mg/kg metreleptin (n = 11) or placebo (n = 9). For study 2, five healthy subjects received 0.01, 0.1, and 0.3 mg/kg metreleptin in both fed and fasting conditions for 1 and 3 d, respectively. Main Outcome Measures: Circulating pref-1 and leptin levels were measured. Results: Pref-1 was significantly higher in HA subjects vs. controls (P = 0.035) and negatively associated with BMD (ρ = −0.38; P < 0.01) and bone mineral content (ρ = −0.32; P < 0.05). Metreleptin administration did not alter pref-1 levels in any study reported herein. Conclusions: Pref-1 is higher in HA subjects than controls. Metreleptin administration at low physiological, supraphysiological, and pharmacological doses does not affect pref-1 levels, suggesting that hypoleptinemia is not responsible for higher pref-1 levels and that leptin does not regulate pref-1. PMID:21795455

  15. Preadipocyte factor-1 levels are higher in women with hypothalamic amenorrhea and are associated with bone mineral content and bone mineral density through a mechanism independent of leptin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aronis, Konstantinos N; Kilim, Holly; Chamberland, John P; Breggia, Anne; Rosen, Clifford; Mantzoros, Christos S

    2011-10-01

    Preadipocyte factor 1 (pref-1) is increased in anorexia nervosa and is associated negatively with bone mineral density (BMD). No previous studies exist on pref-1 in women with exercise-induced hypothalamic amenorrhea (HA), which similar to anorexia nervosa, is an energy-deficiency state associated with hypoleptinemia. Our objective was to evaluate whether pref-1 levels are also elevated and associated with low BMD and to assess whether leptin regulates pref-1 levels in women with HA. Study 1 was a double-blinded, placebo-controlled randomized clinical trial of metreleptin administration in women with HA. Study 2 was an open-label study of metreleptin administration in low physiological, supraphysiological, and pharmacological doses in healthy women volunteers. At Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, 20 women with HA and leptin levels higher than 5 ng/ml and nine healthy control women participated in study 1, and five healthy women participated in study 2. For study 1, 20 HA subjects were randomized to receive either 0.08 mg/kg metreleptin (n = 11) or placebo (n = 9). For study 2, five healthy subjects received 0.01, 0.1, and 0.3 mg/kg metreleptin in both fed and fasting conditions for 1 and 3 d, respectively. Circulating pref-1 and leptin levels were measured. Pref-1 was significantly higher in HA subjects vs. controls (P = 0.035) and negatively associated with BMD (ρ = -0.38; P < 0.01) and bone mineral content (ρ = -0.32; P < 0.05). Metreleptin administration did not alter pref-1 levels in any study reported herein. Pref-1 is higher in HA subjects than controls. Metreleptin administration at low physiological, supraphysiological, and pharmacological doses does not affect pref-1 levels, suggesting that hypoleptinemia is not responsible for higher pref-1 levels and that leptin does not regulate pref-1.

  16. Biological Effects Of Artificial Illumination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corth, Richard

    1980-10-01

    We are increasingly being warned of the possible effects of so called "polluted" light, that is light that differs in spectral content from that of sunlight. We should be concerned, we are told, because all animals and plants have evolved under this natural daylight and therefore any difference between that illuminant and the artificial illuminants that are on the market today, is suspect. The usual presentation of the differences between the sunlight and the artificial illuminants are as shown in Figure 1. Here we are shown the spectral power distribution of sunlight and Cool White fluorescent light. The spectral power distributions of each have been normalized to some convenient wavelength so that each can be seen and easily compared on the same figure. But this presentation is misleading for one does not experience artificial illuminants at the same intensity as one experiences sunlight. Sunlight intensities are ordinarily found to be in the 8000 to 10,000 footcandle range whereas artificial illuminants are rarely experienced at intensity levels greater than 100 footcandles. Therefore a representative difference between the two types of illumination conditions is more accurately represented as in Figure 2. Thus if evolutionary adaptations require that humans and other animals be exposed to sunlight to ensure wellbeing, it is clear that one must be exposed to sunlight intensities. It is not feasible to expect that artificially illuminated environments will be lit to the same intensity as sunlight

  17. Elevated basal progesterone levels are associated with increased preovulatory progesterone rise but not with higher pregnancy rates in ICSI cycles with GnRH antagonists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutlu, Mehmet Firat; Erdem, Mehmet; Mutlu, Ilknur; Bulut, Berk; Erdem, Ahmet

    2017-09-01

    To ascertain the association between basal progesterone (P) levels and the occurrence of preovulatory progesterone rise (PPR) and clinical pregnancy rates (CPRs) in ICSI cycles with GnRH antagonists. Serum P levels of 464 patients were measured on day 2 and day of hCG of cycles. Cycles with basal P levels>1.6ng/mL were cancelled. All embryos were cryopreserved in cycles with P levels≥2ng/mL on the day of hCG. The primary outcome measures were the incidence of PPR (P>1.5ng/mL) and CPR with regard to basal P. Basal P levels were significantly higher in cycles with PPR than in those without PPR (0.63±0.31 vs. 0.48±0.28ng/mL). Area under the curve for basal P according to ROC analysis to discriminate between elevated and normal P levels on the day of hCG was 0.65 (0.58-0.71 95% CI, pcycles with and without PPR was 0.65ng/mL. Cycles with basal P levels above 0.65ng/mL had a significantly higher incidence of PPR (30.9% vs. 13.5%) but similar clinical and cumulative pregnancy rates (38.8% vs. 31.1% and 41.7% vs. 32.6%, respectively) in comparison to cycles with basal P levels below 0.65ng/mL. In multivariate regression analysis, basal P levels, LH level on the first day of antagonist administration, and estradiol levels on the day of hCG trigger were the variables that predicted PPR. Basal P levels were associated with increased incidence of PPR but not with CPR. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Higher glucose level and systemic oxidative stress decrease the mean velocity index of the retinal artery during flickering light stimulation in type 1 diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debelić, Vladimir; Drnovšek Olup, Brigita; Žižek, Bogomir; Skitek, Milan; Jerin, Aleš

    2016-10-31

    To determine whether higher glucose level and systemic oxidative stress decrease mean velocity (MV) index of the central retinal artery (CRA) during flickering light stimulation in type 1 diabetes (T1D). The study was performed in the period from 2008 to 2015 at the University Eye Clinic in Ljubljana. 41 patients with T1D and 37 participants without diabetes were included. MV in the CRA was measured using Doppler ultrasound diagnostics in basal conditions and during 8 Hz flickering light irritation. The plasma levels of glucose, fructosamine, 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG), triglycerides, cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) were measured. Patients with T1D had significantly higher levels of blood glucose (Ptriglycerides (P=0.108), cholesterol (P=0.531), and LDL (P=0.645) between the groups. Patients with T1D also had a significantly lower MV index in the CRA (1.11±0.15 vs 1.24±0.23; P=0.010). In the T1D group, a significant negative correlation was found between the level of glucose (r=0.58; Pindex in the CRA. At the same time, in this group fructosamine and 8-OHdG levels had a separate effect on the MV index (adjusted R2=0.38, Pglucose levels, the medium-term glucose level, and systemic oxidative stress could importantly reduce retinal vasodilatation during flickering light irritation in patients with T1D.

  19. Gaussian-2 theory: Use of higher level correlation methods, quadratic configuration interaction geometries, and second-order Moller--Plesset zero-point energies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Curtiss, L.A.; Raghavachari, K.; Pople, J.A.

    1995-01-01

    The performance of Gaussian-2 theory is investigated when higher level theoretical methods are included for correlation effects, geometries, and zero-point energies. A higher level of correlation treatment is examined using Brueckner doubles [BD(T)] and coupled cluster [CCSD(T)] methods rather than quadratic configuration interaction [QCISD(T)]. The use of geometries optimized at the QCISD level rather than the second-order Moller--Plesset level (MP2) and the use of scaled MP2 zero-point energies rather than scaled Hartree--Fock (HF) zero-point energies have also been examined. The set of 125 energies used for validation of G2 theory [J. Chem. Phys. 94, 7221 (1991)] is used to test out these variations of G2 theory. Inclusion of higher levels of correlation treatment has little effect except in the cases of multiply-bonded systems. In these cases better agreement is obtained in some cases and poorer agreement in others so that there is no improvement in overall performance. The use of QCISD geometries yields significantly better agreement with experiment for several cases including the ionization potentials of CS and O 2 , electron affinity of CN, and dissociation energies of N 2 , O 2 , CN, and SO 2 . This leads to a slightly better agreement with experiment overall. The MP2 zero-point energies gives no overall improvement. These methods may be useful for specific systems

  20. Patients with Ankylosing Spondylitis and Low Disease Activity because of Anti-TNF-Alpha Therapy Have Higher TRAIL Levels Than Controls: A Potential Compensatory Effect

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernanda Genre

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. TRAIL is a potential biomarker of cardiovascular (CV disease. Ankylosing spondylitis (AS is a chronic inflammatory disease associated with metabolic syndrome (MeS and accelerated atherosclerosis. We assessed whether disease activity, systemic inflammation, and MeS features were associated with circulating TRAIL levels in AS patients undergoing TNF-α antagonist infliximab therapy and if infliximab infusion modified TRAIL levels. Methods. We measured TRAIL serum levels in 30 nondiabetic AS patients without CV disease undergoing anti-TNF-α therapy, immediately before and after an infliximab infusion, and in 48 matched controls. Correlations of TRAIL levels with disease activity, systemic inflammation and MeS features, adipokines, and biomarkers of endothelial activation were evaluated. Changes in TRAIL levels following anti-TNF-α infusion were analyzed. Results. TRAIL levels were higher in AS patients than controls. TRAIL levels displayed an inverse correlation with total and LDL cholesterol. We observed an inverse correlation with QUICKI and a marginal association with HOMA-IR. We also found an inverse correlation with resistin and a marginal association with apelin and OPN. Anti-TNF-α infusion did not change TRAIL levels after 120′. Conclusion. Elevated TRAIL levels in AS patients may be the result of a compensatory mechanism to reduce CV risk in these patients.

  1. Artificially Engineered Protein Polymers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yun Jung; Holmberg, Angela L; Olsen, Bradley D

    2017-06-07

    Modern polymer science increasingly requires precise control over macromolecular structure and properties for engineering advanced materials and biomedical systems. The application of biological processes to design and synthesize artificial protein polymers offers a means for furthering macromolecular tunability, enabling polymers with dispersities of ∼1.0 and monomer-level sequence control. Taking inspiration from materials evolved in nature, scientists have created modular building blocks with simplified monomer sequences that replicate the function of natural systems. The corresponding protein engineering toolbox has enabled the systematic development of complex functional polymeric materials across areas as diverse as adhesives, responsive polymers, and medical materials. This review discusses the natural proteins that have inspired the development of key building blocks for protein polymer engineering and the function of these elements in material design. The prospects and progress for scalable commercialization of protein polymers are reviewed, discussing both technology needs and opportunities.

  2. Prostate-specific antigen levels are higher in African-American than in white patients in a multicenter registration study: Results of RTOG 94-12

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vijayakumar, Srinivasan; Winter, Kathryn; Sause, William; Gallagher, Michael J.; Michalski, Jeff; Roach, Mack; Porter, Arthur; Bondy, Melissa

    1998-01-01

    Purpose: To compare serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels in a national sample of African-American and white men with prostate cancer, and to attempt to explain any differences by using self-reported individual-level socioeconomic status adjustments. Methods and Materials: During 4((1)/(2)) months in 1994-95, 709 patients with nonmetastatic prostate cancer were enrolled in this prospective study; 17.5% were African-American and 82.5% were white. Information about clinical stage, tumor grade, pretreatment PSA, type of insurance, and educational and income status was obtained. Serum PSA levels were measured and racial differences were found; how the differences were influenced by other patient- or tumor-related factors and if the differences could be explained by socioeconomic status disparities were determined. In univariate analyses, factors associated with the mean PSA levels were studied; log-converted values were used to yield a normal distribution. Multivariate analyses were done on log-linear models for description of association patterns among various categorical variables; a perfectly fitted model should have a correlation value (CV) of 1.0. Results: The mean PSA level was higher in African-Americans (14.68 ng/ml) than in whites (9.82 ng/ml) (p = 0.001). Clinical stage (p = 0.001), Gleason sum tumor grade (p = 0.0001), educational level (p = 0.001), and household income (p = 0.03) were also associated with mean PSA levels; age, type of biopsy, and insurance status were not. Disease stage (p = 0.0001), grade (p 0.0001), education (p = 0.07), and income (p = 0.02) were all associated with PSA levels for whites, but none of these factors were important for African-Americans (all p values > 0.1). The best fitted log-linear model (CV = 0.99) contained PSA ( 20), Gleason sum grade (2-5, 6-7, and 8-10), race, and two interactions: PSA by race (p = 0.0012) and PSA by Gleason sum (p = 0.0001). Models replacing race for either income (CV = 0.82) or education

  3. Effect of Task-Correlated Physiological Fluctuations and Motion in 2D and 3D Echo-Planar Imaging in a Higher Cognitive Level fMRI Paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ladstein, Jarle; Evensmoen, Hallvard R; Håberg, Asta K; Kristoffersen, Anders; Goa, Pål E

    2016-01-01

    To compare 2D and 3D echo-planar imaging (EPI) in a higher cognitive level fMRI paradigm. In particular, to study the link between the presence of task-correlated physiological fluctuations and motion and the fMRI contrast estimates from either 2D EPI or 3D EPI datasets, with and without adding nuisance regressors to the model. A signal model in the presence of partly task-correlated fluctuations is derived, and predictions for contrast estimates with and without nuisance regressors are made. Thirty-one healthy volunteers were scanned using 2D EPI and 3D EPI during a virtual environmental learning paradigm. In a subgroup of 7 subjects, heart rate and respiration were logged, and the correlation with the paradigm was evaluated. FMRI analysis was performed using models with and without nuisance regressors. Differences in the mean contrast estimates were investigated by analysis-of-variance using Subject, Sequence, Day, and Run as factors. The distributions of group level contrast estimates were compared. Partially task-correlated fluctuations in respiration, heart rate and motion were observed. Statistically significant differences were found in the mean contrast estimates between the 2D EPI and 3D EPI when using a model without nuisance regressors. The inclusion of nuisance regressors for cardiorespiratory effects and motion reduced the difference to a statistically non-significant level. Furthermore, the contrast estimate values shifted more when including nuisance regressors for 3D EPI compared to 2D EPI. The results are consistent with 3D EPI having a higher sensitivity to fluctuations compared to 2D EPI. In the presence partially task-correlated physiological fluctuations or motion, proper correction is necessary to get expectation correct contrast estimates when using 3D EPI. As such task-correlated physiological fluctuations or motion is difficult to avoid in paradigms exploring higher cognitive functions, 2D EPI seems to be the preferred choice for higher

  4. Microvascular abnormalities in capillaroscopy correlate with higher serum IL-18 and sE-selectin levels in patients with type 1 diabetes complicated by microangiopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Górska

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Microvascular abnormalities are one of the most important causes of persistent diabetic complications. The aim of this study was to compare microvascular changes examined by nailfold capillaroscopy with serum concentrations of soluble E-selectin (sE-selectin and IL-18 in type 1 diabetic patients with and without microangiopathy. Serum levels of sE-selectin and IL-18 were determined by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in 106 patients with type 1 diabetes and in 40 healthy controls. All diabetic patients were evaluated by extensive clinical, laboratory and capillaroscopic studies. Morphological changes were observed by nailfold capillaroscopy in 86 out of 106 (81% diabetic patients. Severe capillaroscopic changes were seen in 32 out of 54 (59% patients with microangiopathy, but in only seven out of 52 (13% patients without microangiopathy. Higher serum levels of sE-selectin (p < 0.001 and IL-18 (p < 0.05 were demonstrated in diabetic patients compared to controls. Significant differences of sE-selectin (p < 0.001 and IL-18 (p < 0.01 serum concentrations were observed between diabetic patients with microangiopathy and controls. Moreover, comparison between patients with and without microangiopathic complications showed a significantly higher capillaroscopic score and sE-selectin serum concentration in the group with microangiopathy (p < 0.001. Furthermore, diabetic patients with severe microvascular changes in capillaroscopy showed significantly higher IL-18 (p < 0.001 and sE-selectin (p < 0.05 serum levels than subgroups without changes or with mild abnormalities. Our findings suggest that abnormalities in nailfold capillaroscopy may reflect the extent of microvascular involvement and are associated with higher sE-selectin and IL-18 serum levels, as well as with microangiopathic complications in diabetic patients. (Folia Histochemica et Cytobiologica 2011; Vol. 49, No. 1, pp. 104–110

  5. Short repeats in the heme oxygenase 1 gene promoter is associated with increased levels of inflammation, ferritin and higher risk of type-2 diabetes mellitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, Mónica; Leiva, Elba; Arredondo-Olguín, Miguel

    2016-09-01

    We evaluated the relationship between the HO1 genotype, ferritin levels and the risk of type-2 diabetes and inflammation. Eight hundred thirty-five individuals were evaluated and classified according to their nutritional status and the presence of type-2 diabetes: 153 overweight (OW); 62 obese (OB); 55 type-2 diabetes mellitus (DM); 202 OWDM; 239 OBDM and 124 controls (C). We studied biochemical (glycemia, insulin, lipid profile, liver enzyme, creatinine, hsCRP), hematological (hemoglobin, free erythrocyte protoporphyrin, transferrin receptor and serum Fe and ferritin) and oxidative stress (SOD, GHS and TBARS) parameters. We determined heme oxygenase activity and the (GT)n polymorphism in its gene promoter. Individuals with diabetes, independent of nutritional status, showed high levels of ferritin and HO activity compared to control subjects. Allelic frequency was not different between the groups (Chi(2), NS) however, genotypes were different (Chi(2), P1). The SS (short-short) genotype was higher in all DM individuals compared to controls and MM was higher in controls. SM (short-medium) genotype was an independent risk factor for DM in logistic regression analysis. We observed high risk for type-2 diabetes mellitus in the presence of SM genotype and high levels of ferritin (OR adjusted: 2.7; 1.9-3.6; p1; compared to control group). It was also significantly related to inflammation. The SM genotype in HO1 gene promoter and ferritin levels were associated with higher risk for type-2 diabetes and for having a higher marker of inflammation, which is the main risk factor for the development of chronic diseases. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  6. Interleukins 6 and 15 Levels Are Higher in Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue, but Obesity Is Associated with Their Increased Content in Visceral Fat Depots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Izabela Jonas

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Excess adiposity is associated with chronic inflammation, which takes part in the development of obesity-related complications. The aim of this study was to establish whether subcutaneous (SAT or visceral (VAT adipose tissue plays a major role in synthesis of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Concentrations of interleukins (IL: 1β, 6, 8 and 15 were measured at the protein level by an ELISA-based method and on the mRNA level by real-time PCR in VAT and SAT samples obtained from 49 obese (BMI > 40 kg/m2 and 16 normal-weight (BMI 20–24.9 kg/m2 controls. IL-6 and IL-15 protein concentrations were higher in SAT than in VAT for both obese (p = 0.003 and p < 0.0001, respectively and control individuals (p = 0.004 and p = 0.001, respectively, while for IL-1β this was observed only in obese subjects (p = 0.047. What characterized obese individuals was the higher expression of IL-6 and IL-15 at the protein level in VAT compared to normal-weight controls (p = 0.047 and p = 0.016, respectively. Additionally, obese individuals with metabolic syndrome had higher IL-1β levels in VAT than did obese individuals without this syndrome (p = 0.003. In conclusion, concentrations of some pro-inflammatory cytokines were higher in SAT than in VAT, but it was the increased pro-inflammatory activity of VAT that was associated with obesity and metabolic syndrome.

  7. Sports practice, resilience, body and sexual esteem, and higher educational level are associated with better sexual adjustment in men with acquired paraplegia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dos Passos Porto, Isabela; Cardoso, Fernando Luiz; Sacomori, Cinara

    2016-10-12

    To analyse the association of team sports practice and physical and psychological factors with sexual adjustment in men with paraplegia. More specifically, we aimed to compare athletes and non-athletes regarding sexual adjustment, resilience, body and sexual self-esteem, and functional independence. Cross-sectional study with a paired design. The study included 60 men with paraplegia (30 athletes and 30 non-athletes). We used a sociodemographic questionnaire (age, education, and time since injury); a physical and sexual esteem questionnaire; a resilience questionnaire; and Functional Independence Measure (FIM). The dependent variable, sexual adjustment, was determined by the sum of 5 questions about sexual frequency, desire, and satisfaction and physical and psychological adjustment. Data were analysed by using the χ2 test, Wilcoxon's test, Spearman's correlation test, and hierarchical multiple linear regression analysis, with p Athletes had significantly higher sexual adjustment (p = 0.001) and higher body and sexual esteem (p esteem, higher educational level, and higher resilience levels (R2 = 58%). There was an interaction between sports practice and body and sexual esteem (p = 0.024; R2 = 62%). Participation in sports influenced the sexual adjustment of the men with paraplegia, even when controlled for psychological (resilience and body and sexual esteem) and physical (functional independence) aspects.

  8. Fear of falling and falls self-efficacy and their relationship to higher-level competence among community-dwelling senior men and women in Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katsumata, Yuriko; Arai, Asuna; Tomimori, Masashi; Ishida, Kozo; Lee, Romeo B; Tamashiro, Hiko

    2011-07-01

    This cross-sectional study examined the relationships of fear of falling and falls self-efficacy with higher-level competence among community-dwelling senior citizens in Japan. Of the 822 registered senior citizens, 731 (89%) community dwellers were requested to participate in the survey using a mailed self-accomplished questionnaire. Data from 648 respondents with duly accomplished questionnaires were analyzed using R(2) , the coefficient of determination, based on a multivariate regression analysis. Fear of falling, low falls self-efficacy and higher-level functional disability were observed among respondents. Of the hypothesized relationships examined by sex, fear of falling was significantly associated with disability among male respondents and low falls self-efficacy among both sexes. Several confounding variables were strongly associated with competence. While the data underscore the strategic importance of promoting higher-level competence among the senior citizens, there is much to suggest that their competence is likely to be maintained if their fear of falling and falls self-efficacy were modified. Programs must also consider a wide array of intervening factors. © 2011 Japan Geriatrics Society.

  9. Thyrotropin Receptor Antibody (TRAb)-IgM Levels Are Markedly Higher Than TRAb-IgG Levels in Graves' Disease Patients and Controls, and TRAb-IgM Production Is Related to Epstein-Barr Virus Reactivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumata, Keisuke; Nagata, Keiko; Matsushita, Michiko; Kuwamoto, Satoshi; Kato, Masako; Murakami, Ichiro; Fukata, Shuji; Hayashi, Kazuhiko

    2016-10-01

    Graves' disease is an autoimmune thyroid disorder that mainly presents as hyperthyroidism and is caused by thyrotropin receptor antibodies (TRAbs) that stimulate thyroid-stimulating hormone receptors. We previously reported that Graves' disease patients and healthy controls both had Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-infected TRAb-positive B cells and the EBV-reactivated induction of these B cells in cultures may induce the production of TRAbs. In the present study, we quantified serum TRAb-IgG and TRAb-IgM levels in 34 Graves' disease patients and 15 controls using ELISA to elucidate the mechanisms underlying EBV-related antibody production. As expected, TRAb-IgG and TRAb-IgM levels were higher in Graves' disease patients than in controls; however, TRAb-IgM levels were significantly higher than those of TRAb-IgG levels, whereas total IgM levels were lower than total IgG levels. On the other hand, the enhanced production of TRAb-IgM was frequently observed in patients with EBV reactivation. These results are consistent with the fact that the percentage of autoreactive IgM B cells are higher than that of autoreactive IgG B cells, and support the EBV-related polyclonal B cell activation. It is necessary to clarify the biological characteristics of TRAb-IgM and the relationship between TRAb isotypes and the biology of Graves' disease.

  10. Systematic review and meta-analysis links autism and toxic metals and highlights the impact of country development status: Higher blood and erythrocyte levels for mercury and lead, and higher hair antimony, cadmium, lead, and mercury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saghazadeh, Amene; Rezaei, Nima

    2017-10-03

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a heterogeneous neurodevelopmental disorder that affects cognitive and higher cognitive functions. Increasing prevalence of ASD and high rates of related comorbidities has caused serious health loss and placed an onerous burden on the supporting families, caregivers, and health care services. Heavy metals are among environmental factors that may contribute to ASD. However, due to inconsistencies across studies, it is still hard to explain the association between ASD and toxic metals. Therefore the objective of this study was to investigate the difference in heavy metal measures between patients with ASD and control subjects. We included observational studies that measured levels of toxic metals (antimony, arsenic, cadmium, lead, manganese, mercury, nickel, silver, and thallium) in different specimens (whole blood, plasma, serum, red cells, hair and urine) for patients with ASD and for controls. The main electronic medical database (PubMed and Scopus) were searched from inception through October 2016. 52 studies were eligible to be included in the present systematic review, of which 48 studies were included in the meta-analyses. The hair concentrations of antimony (standardized mean difference (SMD)=0.24; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.03 to 0.45) and lead (SMD=0.60; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.17 to 1.03) in ASD patients were significantly higher than those of control subjects. ASD patients had higher erythrocyte levels of lead (SMD=1.55, CI: 0.2 to 2.89) and mercury (SMD=1.56, CI: 0.42 to 2.70). There were significantly higher blood lead levels in ASD patients (SMD=0.43, CI: 0.02 to 0.85). Sensitivity analyses showed that ASD patients in developed but not in developing countries have lower hair concentrations of cadmium (SMD=-0.29, CI: -0.46 to -0.12). Also, such analyses indicated that ASD patients in developing but not in developed lands have higher hair concentrations of lead (SMD=1.58, CI: 0.80 to 2.36) and mercury (SMD=0

  11. A DISTRIBUTED SMART HOME ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE SYSTEM

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lynggaard, Per

    2013-01-01

    A majority of the research performed today explore artificial intelligence in smart homes by using a centralized approach where a smart home server performs the necessary calculations. This approach has some disadvantages that can be overcome by shifting focus to a distributed approach where...... the artificial intelligence system is implemented as distributed as agents running parts of the artificial intelligence system. This paper presents a distributed smart home architecture that distributes artificial intelligence in smart homes and discusses the pros and cons of such a concept. The presented...... distributed model is a layered model. Each layer offers a different complexity level of the embedded distributed artificial intelligence. At the lowest layer smart objects exists, they are small cheap embedded microcontroller based smart devices that are powered by batteries. The next layer contains a more...

  12. Lower adiponectin levels at first trimester of pregnancy are associated with increased insulin resistance and higher risk of developing gestational diabetes mellitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacroix, Marilyn; Battista, Marie-Claude; Doyon, Myriam; Ménard, Julie; Ardilouze, Jean-Luc; Perron, Patrice; Hivert, Marie-France

    2013-06-01

    To evaluate the associations between adiponectin levels and 1) the risk of developing gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), and 2) insulin resistance/sensitivity, β-cell function, and compensation indices in a prospective cohort representative of the general population of pregnant women. We performed anthropometric measurements and collected blood samples at 1st (6-13 weeks) and 2nd (24-28 weeks) trimesters. Diagnosis of GDM was made at 2nd trimester based on a 75-g oral glucose tolerance test (International Association of the Diabetes and Pregnancy Study Groups criteria). Insulin was measured (ELISA; Luminex) to estimate homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), β-cell function (HOMA-B), insulin sensitivity (Matsuda index), insulin secretion (AUC(insulin/glucose)), and β-cell compensation (insulin secretion sensitivity index-2). Adiponectin was measured by radioimmunoassay. Among the 445 participants included in this study, 38 women developed GDM. Women who developed GDM had lower 1st-trimester adiponectin levels (9.67 ± 3.84 vs. 11.92 ± 4.59 µg/mL in women with normal glucose tolerance). Lower adiponectin levels were associated with higher risk of developing GDM (OR, 1.12 per 1 µg/mL decrease of adiponectin levels; P = 0.02, adjusted for BMI and HbA1c at 1st trimester). Adiponectin levels at 1st and 2nd trimesters were associated with HOMA-IR (both: r = -0.22, P insulin/glucose). Pregnant women with lower adiponectin levels at 1st trimester have higher levels of insulin resistance and are more likely to develop GDM independently of adiposity or glycemic measurements.

  13. Higher Levels of c-Met Expression and Phosphorylation Identify Cell Lines With Increased Sensitivity to AMG-458, a Novel Selective c-Met Inhibitor With Radiosensitizing Effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Bo; Torossian, Artour; Sun, Yunguang; Du, Ruihong; Dicker, Adam P.; Lu Bo

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: c-Met is overexpressed in some non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines and tissues. Cell lines with higher levels of c-Met expression and phosphorylation depend on this receptor for survival. We studied the effects of AMG-458 on 2 NSCLC cell lines. Methods and Materials: 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl) -2H-tetrazolium assays assessed the sensitivities of the cells to AMG-458. Clonogenic survival assays illustrated the radiosensitizing effects of AMG-458. Western blot for cleaved caspase 3 measured apoptosis. Immunoblotting for c-Met, phospho-Met (p-Met), Akt/p-Akt, and Erk/p-Erk was performed to observe downstream signaling. Results: AMG-458 enhanced radiosensitivity in H441 but not in A549. H441 showed constitutive phosphorylation of c-Met. A549 expressed low levels of c-Met, which were phosphorylated only in the presence of exogenous hepatocyte growth factor. The combination of radiation therapy and AMG-458 treatment was found to synergistically increase apoptosis in the H441 cell line but not in A549. Radiation therapy, AMG-458, and combination treatment were found to reduce p-Akt and p-Erk levels in H441 but not in A549. H441 became less sensitive to AMG-458 after small interfering RNA knockdown of c-Met; there was no change in A549. After overexpression of c-Met, A549 became more sensitive, while H441 became less sensitive to AMG-458. Conclusions: AMG-458 was more effective in cells that expressed higher levels of c-Met/p-Met, suggesting that higher levels of c-Met and p-Met in NSCLC tissue may classify a subset of tumors that are more sensitive to molecular therapies against this receptor.

  14. Serum ferritin level is higher in male adolescents with obesity: results from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2010

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yeon Jin Jeon

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available PurposePrevious reports show an association between high serum ferritin levels and metabolic syndrome (MS in adults. In adolescents, little information is available with obesity and serum ferritin levels.MethodsThis is a cross-sectional study. Data were obtained from the 5th Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (K-NHANES conducted during 2010 by the Korean Ministry of Health and Welfare. A total of 849 subjects aged 10-18 years participated in the 2010 survey. A body mass index (BMI ≥95th percentile for age and sex or a BMI ≥25 was used to diagnose as obesity.ResultsThe weighted prevalence of obesity was 13.4% (62/462 in male and 8.5% (33/387 in female. We observed significantly higher serum ferritin in male than in female (mean±standard error [SE], 50.5±2.3 µU/L vs. 30.6±1.3 µU/L; P<0.0001. In male, serum ferritin is positively correlated with age (P<0.0001. White blood cell (WBC count, serum fasting blood sugar, triglyceride (TG, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein, insulin, homeostasis model assessment-insulin resistance (HOMA-IR, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and ferritin levels were higher and high-density lipoprotein (HDL were lower in the obesity than in the normal group. In female adolescents, WBC count, TG, insulin, and HOMA-IR were higher and HDL were lower in the obesity than in the normal group. In male, serum ferritin levels showed positive association with obesity (β=21.196, P=0.016.ConclusionSerum ferritin levels appear to be associated with obesity in Korean male adolescents.

  15. Incomplete response to artificial tears is associated with features of neuropathic ocular pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galor, Anat; Batawi, Hatim; Felix, Elizabeth R; Margolis, Todd P; Sarantopoulos, Konstantinos D; Martin, Eden R; Levitt, Roy C

    2016-06-01

    Artificial tears are first-line therapy for patients with dry eye symptoms. It is not known, however, which patient factors associate with a positive response to therapy. The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether certain ocular and systemic findings are associated with a differential subjective response to artificial tears. Cross-sectional study of 118 individuals reporting artificial tears use (hypromellose 0.4%) to treat dry eye-associated ocular pain. An evaluation was performed to assess dry eye symptoms (via the dry eye questionnaire 5 and ocular surface disease index), ocular and systemic (non-ocular) pain complaints and ocular signs (tear osmolarity, tear breakup time, corneal staining, Schirmer testing with anaesthesia, and eyelid and meibomian gland assessment). The main outcome measures were factors associated with differential subjective response to artificial tears. By self-report, 23 patients reported no improvement, 73 partial improvement and 22 complete improvement in ocular pain with artificial tears. Patients who reported no or partial improvement in pain with artificial tears reported higher levels of hot-burning ocular pain and sensitivity to wind compared with those with complete improvement. Patients were also asked to rate the intensity of systemic pain elsewhere in the body (other than the eye). Patients who reported no or incomplete improvement with artificial tears had higher systemic pain scores compared with those with complete improvement. Both ocular and systemic (non-ocular) pain complaints are associated with a differential subjective response to artificial tears. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/

  16. A proposal to Raise the Level of Competitive Advantage of Scientific Research from the Teaching Staff’s Perspective in Higher Education Institutions - the Kingdom of Bahrain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Noshy Anis ELsherbiny Elbaz

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The study aimed to provide a proposal to raise the level of competitive advantage in scientific research from the teaching staff’s perspective in higher education institutions - in the Kingdom of Bahrain. To achieve this objective, the study used a descriptive method, and a questionnaire as a tool for the field study. In order to determine the mechanisms for achieving competitive advantage in scientific research at the institutions of higher education in the Kingdom of Bahrain, the tool was administered to a sample of (137 faculty members  from some higher education institutions (public and private in the Kingdom of Bahrain. The field study revealed a number of results, inter alia, the study sample agreed with all the proposed mechanisms to achieve competitive advantage in scientific research at institutions of higher education in the Kingdom of Bahrain at a high degree. Their agreement to the themes was in this order: academic support for scientific research, financial support for scientific research, community support for scientific research, and information technology support for scientific research. The study results also showed no statistically significant differences between the responses of the study sample about the proposed mechanisms for achieving competitive advantage in scientific research due to the variables of the academic degree  and the institution. Keywords: Competitive advantage, Research, Higher education institutions.

  17. Toll/Interleukin-1 receptor member ST2 exhibits higher soluble levels in type 2 diabetes, especially when accompanied with left ventricular diastolic dysfunction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fousteris Evangelos

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Soluble ST2, a member of the of the Toll/IL-1 superfamily, is a novel biomarker with exceptional predictive value in heart failure and myocardial infarction- related mortality as well as in acute dyspneic states. Soluble ST2 is considered a decoy receptor of IL 33 that blocks the protective effects of the cytokine in atherosclerosis and cardiac remodeling. In the present study we investigated the differences in the levels of soluble ST2, BNP and hs-CRP between healthy controls and patients with type 2 diabetes with and without left ventricular diastolic dysfunction. A secondary aim was to investigate correlations between sST2 and other biomarkers of type 2 diabetes, such as HbA1c. Methods 158 volunteers were recruited and underwent a complete Doppler-echocardiographic evaluation of both systolic & diastolic cardiac function. All subjects with ejection fraction Results Patients with type 2 diabetes with (p Conclusions Patients with type 2 diabetes exhibit higher sST2 levels compared to healthy controls. The presence of LVDD in patients with type 2 diabetes is associated with even higher sST2 levels. A significant correlation between glycemic control and sST2 levels was also revealed.

  18. Artificial cognition architectures

    CERN Document Server

    Crowder, James A; Friess, Shelli A

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this book is to establish the foundation, principles, theory, and concepts that are the backbone of real, autonomous Artificial Intelligence. Presented here are some basic human intelligence concepts framed for Artificial Intelligence systems. These include concepts like Metacognition and Metamemory, along with architectural constructs for Artificial Intelligence versions of human brain functions like the prefrontal cortex. Also presented are possible hardware and software architectures that lend themselves to learning, reasoning, and self-evolution

  19. Artificial Intelligence Study (AIS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-02-01

    ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGNECE HARDWARE ....... 2-50 AI Architecture ................................... 2-49 AI Hardware ....................................... 2...ftf1 829 ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE STUDY (RIS)(U) MAY CONCEPTS 1/3 A~NLYSIS AGENCY BETHESA RD R B NOJESKI FED 6? CM-RP-97-1 NCASIFIED /01/6 M |K 1.0...p/ - - ., e -- CAA- RP- 87-1 SAOFŔ)11 I ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE STUDY (AIS) tNo DTICFEBRUARY 1987 LECT 00 I PREPARED BY RESEARCH AND ANALYSIS

  20. Artificial Intelligence in Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devinney, E. J.; Prša, A.; Guinan, E. F.; Degeorge, M.

    2010-12-01

    From the perspective (and bias) as Eclipsing Binary researchers, we give a brief overview of the development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications, describe major application areas of AI in astronomy, and illustrate the power of an AI approach in an application developed under the EBAI (Eclipsing Binaries via Artificial Intelligence) project, which employs Artificial Neural Network technology for estimating light curve solution parameters of eclipsing binary systems.

  1. Quo Vadis, Artificial Intelligence?

    OpenAIRE

    Berrar, Daniel; Sato, Naoyuki; Schuster, Alfons

    2010-01-01

    Since its conception in the mid 1950s, artificial intelligence with its great ambition to understand and emulate intelligence in natural and artificial environments alike is now a truly multidisciplinary field that reaches out and is inspired by a great diversity of other fields. Rapid advances in research and technology in various fields have created environments into which artificial intelligence could embed itself naturally and comfortably. Neuroscience with its desire to understand nervou...

  2. Inteligencia artificial en vehiculo

    OpenAIRE

    Amador Díaz, Pedro

    2012-01-01

    Desarrollo de un robot seguidor de líneas, en el que se implementan diversas soluciones de las áreas de sistemas embebidos e inteligencia artificial. Desenvolupament d'un robot seguidor de línies, en el qual s'implementen diverses solucions de les àrees de sistemes encastats i intel·ligència artificial. Follower robot development of lines, in which various solutions are implemented in the areas of artificial intelligence embedded systems.

  3. Higher plasma levels of advanced glycation end products are associated with incident cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality in type 1 diabetes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nin, Johanna W; Jorsal, Anders; Ferreira, Isabel

    2011-01-01

    -grade inflammation, and arterial stiffness. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: We prospectively followed 169 individuals with diabetic nephropathy and 170 individuals with persistent normoalbuminuria who were free of CVD at study entry and in whom levels of N(ε)-(carboxymethyl)lysine, N(ε)-(carboxyethyl)lysine......OBJECTIVE: To investigate the associations of plasma levels of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) with incident cardiovascular disease (CVD) and all-cause mortality in type 1 diabetes and the extent to which any such associations could be explained by endothelial and renal dysfunction, low...... or endothelial dysfunction, low-grade inflammation, or arterial stiffness. CONCLUSIONS: Higher levels of AGEs are associated with incident fatal and nonfatal CVD as well as all-cause mortality in individuals with type 1 diabetes, independently of other risk factors and of several potential AGEs...

  4. STANFORD ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE PROJECT.

    Science.gov (United States)

    ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE , GAME THEORY, DECISION MAKING, BIONICS, AUTOMATA, SPEECH RECOGNITION, GEOMETRIC FORMS, LEARNING MACHINES, MATHEMATICAL MODELS, PATTERN RECOGNITION, SERVOMECHANISMS, SIMULATION, BIBLIOGRAPHIES.

  5. Individual-level movement bias leads to the formation of higher-order social structure in a mobile group of baboons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonnell, Tyler R; Clarke, Parry M; Henzi, S Peter; Barrett, Louise

    2017-07-01

    In mobile social groups, influence patterns driving group movement can vary between democratic and despotic. The arrival at any single pattern of influence is thought to be underpinned by both environmental factors and group composition. To identify the specific patterns of influence driving travel decision-making in a chacma baboon troop, we used spatially explicit data to extract patterns of individual movement bias. We scaled these estimates of individual-level bias to the level of the group by constructing an influence network and assessing its emergent structural properties. Our results indicate that there is heterogeneity in movement bias: individual animals respond consistently to particular group members, and higher-ranking animals are more likely to influence the movement of others. This heterogeneity resulted in a group-level network structure that consisted of a single core and two outer shells. Here, the presence of a core suggests that a set of highly interdependent animals drove routine group movements. These results suggest that heterogeneity at the individual level can lead to group-level influence structures, and that movement patterns in mobile social groups can add to the exploration of both how these structures develop (i.e. mechanistic aspects) and what consequences they have for individual- and group-level outcomes (i.e. functional aspects).

  6. Higher and lower-level relationships of the deep-sea fish order Alepocephaliformes (Teleostei: Otocephala) inferred from whole mitogenome sequences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Poulsen, Jan Yde; Møller, Peter Rask; Lavoué, Sébastien

    2009-01-01

    , Cypriniformes, Characiformes, Siluriformes and Gymnotiformes). The disputed family Bathylaconidae was found to be an artificial assemblage of the two genera Bathylaco and Herwigia, with the former as the sister group of the family Alepocephalidae and the latter nested within Alepocephalidae. Platytroctidae...

  7. HbA2 levels in β-thalassaemia carriers with the Filipino β0-deletion: are the levels higher than what is found with non-deletional forms of β0-thalassaemia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    George, E; Teh, Lai Kuan; Tan, Jama; Lai, Mei I; Wong, Lily

    2013-01-01

    Classical carriers of β-thalassaemia are identified by a raised HbA2 level. Earlier studies indicated that the Filipino β-deletion has high raised HbA2 levels. The introduction of automated high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) for thalassaemia screening is an important advance in technology for haematology laboratories. The BioRad Variant II Hb analyser is a common instrument used to quantify HbA2 levels in thalassaemia screening. This study aimed to determine HbA2 levels in carriers of Filipino β-mutation using the BioRad Variant II Hb analyser. The Filipino β-deletion was identified using gap-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in the parents of transfusion dependent β-thalassaemia patients who were homozygous for the Filipino β-deletion in the indigenous population of Sabah, Malaysia. Hb subtypes were quantified on the BioRad Variant II Hb analyser. Concurrent α-thalassaemia was identified by multiplex gap-PCR for deletions and amplification refractory mutation system (ARMS)-PCR for non-deletional mutations. The mean HbA2 level for Filipino β-thalassaemia trait was 5.9 ± 0.47 and with coinheritance of α-thalassaemia was 6.3 ± 0.44 (-α heterozygous) and 6.7 ± 0.36 (-α homozygous). The HbA2 levels were all >4% in keeping with the findings of classical β-thalassaemia trait and significantly higher than levels seen in non-deletional forms of β-thalassaemia. The HbA2 level measured on the BioRad Variant II Hb analyser was lower than the level in the first description of the Filipino β-thalassaemia. β-thalassaemia trait with coinheritance of α-thalassaemia (-α) is associated with significantly higher HbA2 level.

  8. Artificial life and life artificialization in Tron

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Dantas Figueiredo

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Cinema constantly shows the struggle between the men and artificial intelligences. Fiction, and more specifically fiction films, lends itself to explore possibilities asking “what if?”. “What if”, in this case, is related to the eventual rebellion of artificial intelligences, theme explored in the movies Tron (1982 and Tron Legacy (2010 trat portray the conflict between programs and users. The present paper examines these films, observing particularly the possibility programs empowering. Finally, is briefly mentioned the concept of cyborg as a possibility of response to human concerns.

  9. The changing concept of competence and categorisation of learning outcomes in Europe: Implications for the design of higher education radiography curricula at the European level

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Castillo, Joseph; Caruana, Carmel J.; Wainwright, David

    2011-01-01

    The Bologna process has made the qualifications framework of the European Higher Educational Area based on three cycles and on learning outcomes central to curriculum development in higher education in Europe. The Tuning Educational Structures in Europe project recommended that learning outcomes be expressed in terms of competences. The expression of educational programme learning outcomes as inventories of competences has since become the norm at the European level. However, the more recent European Qualifications Framework for lifelong learning utilises a tripartite set of categories of learning outcomes, namely, knowledge, skills and competence. In addition, the definition of competence used though overlapping with that used by Tuning, is however not identical. This article reviews and discusses the changing definition of the concept of competence and changes in categorisation of learning outcomes in Europe and their potential impact on curriculum development in radiography at the European level. It is proposed that the shift in the definition of competence and in the categorisation of learning outcomes should be taken into account in the formulation of new European curricula or the updating of present ones so that they may reference in a more direct manner to the levels of the European Qualifications Framework.

  10. African-American (AA) men with local-regional prostate cancer (PC) present with higher prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels than whites: results of RTOG 94-12

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vijayakumar, S.; Winter, K.; Sause, W.; Gallagher, M.J.; Perez, C.; Bondy, M.

    1996-01-01

    Purpose/Objective: To use pretreatment serum PSA levels as an 20), gleason score (2-5,6-7,7-10), race (whites and AAs), and two interactions viz (a) PSA by race (p=0.0012) and (b) PSA by total gleason score (p=0.0001). When race was replaced by educational status, or income, or both, the fits (0.8246,0.8197, and 0.7815, respectively) were not as good as the fit with race in the model. Conclusion: The findings of this nation-wide prospective registration study with a high percentage of AA patient participation confirms previous, smaller, geographically-limited studies (1,2,3) results that AA patients with non-metastatic PC present with a higher mean PSA values than whites. The multivariate findings imply that, for each level of total gleason score, there is a higher percentage of whites with PSA levels 20. Education and/or income as surrogates of sociological status could not completely explain the racial differences. Other reasons for health-care barriers among AAs need to be identified

  11. Design of a medical record review study on the incidence and preventability of adverse events requiring a higher level of care in Belgian hospitals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vlayen Annemie

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Adverse events are unintended patient injuries that arise from healthcare management resulting in disability, prolonged hospital stay or death. Adverse events that require intensive care admission imply a considerable financial burden to the healthcare system. The epidemiology of adverse events in Belgian hospitals has never been assessed systematically. Findings A multistage retrospective review study of patients requiring a transfer to a higher level of care will be conducted in six hospitals in the province of Limburg. Patient records are reviewed starting from January 2012 by a clinical team consisting of a research nurse, a physician and a clinical pharmacist. Besides the incidence and the level of causation and preventability, also the type of adverse events and their consequences (patient harm, mortality and length of stay will be assessed. Moreover, the adequacy of the patient records and quality/usefulness of the method of medical record review will be evaluated. Discussion This paper describes the rationale for a retrospective review study of adverse events that necessitate a higher level of care. More specifically, we are particularly interested in increasing our understanding in the preventability and root causes of these events in order to implement improvement strategies. Attention is paid to the strengths and limitations of the study design.

  12. Platelet activating factor-acylhydrolase (PAF-ase) activity is higher in serum of men than women and is related to levels of low density lipoprotein (LDL)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farr, R.S.; Howell, S.E.; Wardlow, M.L.

    1986-01-01

    PAF-ase is a specific serum enzyme that inactivates PAF by hydrolyzing acetate from the sn-2 position of the glycerol backbone. A reproducible PAF-ase activity assay was developed. A unit is based on the amount of serum required to release 3.61 +/- 0.042 pm 3 H-acetate from 10 pm 3 H-labeled PAF after incubation for 1 hr at 37 0 C. Assays on two single reference serums repeated 7 days were 0.63 +/- 0.013 U and 1.33 +/- 0.031 U. Serum from 20 normal men and 20 normal premenopausal women had significantly different (p = <0.001) levels of 1.32 +/- 0.072 U and 0.97 +/- 0.051 U respectively. They previously reported that PAF-ase is associated with B-lipoprotein. Therefore, total cholesterol (TC), LDL and high density lipoproteins (HDL) were determined on these 40 serums. Regression analysis revealed PAF-ase units were correlated with LDL (r = 0.740; p = < 0.001) and, parenthetically, with the TC (r = 0.620; p = < 0.001) but not with HDL. These correlations were similar for men and women. Thus, serum PAF-ase was partially controlled by serum LDL levels and the higher PAF-ase levels in serum from men were due in part to higher (p = < 0.01) LDL levels in men (147.6 +/- 6.9 mg/dl) as contrasted to women (119.0 +/- 7.6 mg/dl). PAF is a potent inflammatory, bronchoconstrictive and hypotensive agent. These data indicate that sex and serum LDL levels of subjects must be considered during future studies of the role of PAF vs PAF-ase in different disease states

  13. Higher Lipoprotein (a Levels Are Associated with Better Pulmonary Function in Community-Dwelling Older People - Data from the Berlin Aging Study II.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikolaus Buchmann

    Full Text Available Reduced pulmonary function and elevated serum cholesterol levels are recognized risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Currently, there is some controversy concerning relationships between cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, serum triglycerides and lung function. However, most previous studies compared patients suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD with healthy controls, and only a small number examined this relationship in population-based cohorts. Moreover, lipoprotein a [Lp(a], another lipid parameter independently associated with cardiovascular diseases, appears not to have been addressed at all in studies of lung function at the population level. Here, we determined relationships between lung function and several lipid parameters including Lp(a in 606 older community-dwelling participants (55.1% women, 68±4 years old from the Berlin Aging Study II (BASE-II. We found a significantly lower forced expiration volume in 1 second (FEV1 in men with low Lp(a concentrations (t-test. This finding was further substantiated by linear regression models adjusting for known covariates, showing that these associations are statistically significant in both men and women. According to the highest adjusted model, men and women with Lp(a levels below the 20th percentile had 217.3ml and 124.2ml less FEV1 and 239.0ml and 135.2ml less FVC, respectively, compared to participants with higher Lp(a levels. The adjusted models also suggest that the known strong correlation between pro-inflammatory parameters and lung function has only a marginal impact on the Lp(a-pulmonary function association. Our results do not support the hypothesis that higher Lp(a levels are responsible for the increased CVD risk in people with reduced lung function, at least not in the group of community-dwelling older people studied here.

  14. Behavior acquisition in artificial agents

    OpenAIRE

    Thurau, Christian

    2006-01-01

    Computational skill acquisition in robots and simulated agents has been a topic of increasing popularity throughout the last years. Despite impressive progress, autonomous behavior at a level of animals and humans are not yet replicated by machines. Especially when a complex environment demands versatile, goal-oriented behavior, current artificial systems show shortcomings. Consider for instance modern 3D computer games. Despite their key role for more emersive game experience, surprisingly l...

  15. A study on artificial rare earth (RE2O3) based neutron absorber

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    KIM, Kyung-O; Kyung KIM, Jong

    2015-01-01

    A new concept of a neutron absorption material (i.e., an artificial rare earth compound) was introduced for criticality control in a spent fuel storage system. In particular, spent nuclear fuels were considered as a potential source of rare earth elements because the nuclear fission of uranium produces a full range of nuclides. It was also found that an artificial rare earth compound (RE 2 O 3 ) as a High-Level Waste (HLW) was naturally extracted from pyroprocessing technology developed for recovering uranium and transuranic elements (TRU) from spent fuels. In this study, various characteristics (e.g., activity, neutron absorption cross-section) were analyzed for validating the application possibility of this waste compound as a neutron absorption material. As a result, the artificial rare earth compound had a higher neutron absorption probability in the entire energy range, and it can be used for maintaining sub-criticality for more than 40 years on the basis of the neutron absorption capability of Boral™. Therefore, this approach is expected to vastly improve the efficiency of radioactive waste management by simultaneously keeping HLW and spent nuclear fuel in a restricted space. - Highlights: • Quantitative analysis of rare earth elements in PWR spent fuels. • Extraction of artificial rare earth compound using pyroprocessing technology. • Characteristic analysis of artificial rare earth elements. • Performance evaluation of artificial rare earth for criticality control.

  16. Community level patterns in diverse systems: A case study of litter fauna in a Mexican pine-oak forest using higher taxa surrogates and re-sampling methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Claudia E.; Guevara, Roger; Sánchez-Rojas, Gerardo; Téllez, Dianeis; Verdú, José R.

    2008-01-01

    Environmental assessment at the community level in highly diverse ecosystems is limited by taxonomic constraints and statistical methods requiring true replicates. Our objective was to show how diverse systems can be studied at the community level using higher taxa as biodiversity surrogates, and re-sampling methods to allow comparisons. To illustrate this we compared the abundance, richness, evenness and diversity of the litter fauna in a pine-oak forest in central Mexico among seasons, sites and collecting methods. We also assessed changes in the abundance of trophic guilds and evaluated the relationships between community parameters and litter attributes. With the direct search method we observed differences in the rate of taxa accumulation between sites. Bootstrap analysis showed that abundance varied significantly between seasons and sampling methods, but not between sites. In contrast, diversity and evenness were significantly higher at the managed than at the non-managed site. Tree regression models show that abundance varied mainly between seasons, whereas taxa richness was affected by litter attributes (composition and moisture content). The abundance of trophic guilds varied among methods and seasons, but overall we found that parasitoids, predators and detrivores decreased under management. Therefore, although our results suggest that management has positive effects on the richness and diversity of litter fauna, the analysis of trophic guilds revealed a contrasting story. Our results indicate that functional groups and re-sampling methods may be used as tools for describing community patterns in highly diverse systems. Also, the higher taxa surrogacy could be seen as a preliminary approach when it is not possible to identify the specimens at a low taxonomic level in a reasonable period of time and in a context of limited financial resources, but further studies are needed to test whether the results are specific to a system or whether they are general

  17. Artificial intelligence in power system optimization

    CERN Document Server

    Ongsakul, Weerakorn

    2013-01-01

    With the considerable increase of AI applications, AI is being increasingly used to solve optimization problems in engineering. In the past two decades, the applications of artificial intelligence in power systems have attracted much research. This book covers the current level of applications of artificial intelligence to the optimization problems in power systems. This book serves as a textbook for graduate students in electric power system management and is also be useful for those who are interested in using artificial intelligence in power system optimization.

  18. Dietary intake of advanced glycation endproducts is associated with higher levels of advanced glycation endproducts in plasma and urine: The CODAM study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheijen, Jean L J M; Hanssen, Nordin M J; van Greevenbroek, Marleen M; Van der Kallen, Carla J; Feskens, Edith J M; Stehouwer, Coen D A; Schalkwijk, Casper G

    2018-06-01

    Advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs) are formed by the reaction between reducing sugars and proteins. AGEs in the body have been associated with several age-related diseases. High-heat treated and most processed foods are rich in AGEs. The aim of our study was to investigate whether dietary AGEs, are associated with plasma and urinary AGE levels. In 450 participants of the Cohort on Diabetes and Atherosclerosis Maastricht study (CODAM study) we measured plasma and urine concentrations of the AGEs Nε-(carboxymethyl)lysine (CML), Nε-(1-carboxyethyl)lysine (CEL) and Nδ-(5-hydro-5-methyl-4-imidazolon-2-yl)-ornithine (MG-H1) using UPLC-MS/MS. We also estimated dietary intake of CML, CEL and MG-H1 with the use of a dietary AGE database and a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). We used linear regression to investigate the association between standardized dietary AGE intake and standardized plasma or urinary AGE levels, after adjustment for age, sex, glucose metabolism status, waist circumference, kidney function, energy- and macro-nutrient intake, smoking status, physical activity, alcohol intake, LDL-cholesterol and markers of oxidative stress. We found that higher intake of dietary CML, CEL and MG-H1 was associated with significantly higher levels of free plasma and urinary CML, CEL and MG-H1 (βCML = 0.253 (95% CI 0.086; 0.415), βCEL = 0.194 (95% CI 0.040; 0.339), βMG-H1 = 0.223 (95% CI 0.069; 0.373) for plasma and βCML = 0.223 (95% CI 0.049; 0.393), βCEL = 0.180 (95% CI 0.019; 0.332), βMG-H1 = 0.196 (95% CI 0.037; 0.349) for urine, respectively). In addition, we observed non-significant associations of dietary AGEs with their corresponding protein bound plasma AGEs. We demonstrate that higher intake of dietary AGEs is associated with higher levels of AGEs in plasma and urine. Our findings may have important implications for those who ingest a diet rich in AGEs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd and European Society for Clinical Nutrition and

  19. Monitoring channel head erosion processes in response to an artificially induced abrupt base level change using time-lapse photography 2301

    Science.gov (United States)

    Headcut and channel extension in response to an abrupt base level change in 2004 of approximately 1m was studied in a 1.29 ha semiarid headwater drainage on the Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed (WGEW) in southeastern Arizona, USA. Field observations and time-lapse photography were coupled with hy...

  20. Gas exchange at whole plant level shows that a less conservative water use is linked to a higher performance in three ecologically distinct pine species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar-Tortosa, D.; Castro, J.; Rubio de Casas, R.; Viñegla, B.; Sánchez-Cañete, E. P.; Villar-Salvador, P.

    2018-04-01

    Increasing temperatures and decreasing precipitation in large areas of the planet as a consequence of global warming will affect plant growth and survival. However, the impact of climatic conditions will differ across species depending on their stomatal response to increasing aridity, as this will ultimately affect the balance between carbon assimilation and water loss. In this study, we monitored gas exchange, growth and survival in saplings of three widely distributed European pine species (Pinus halepensis, P. nigra and P. sylvestris) with contrasting distribution and ecological requirements in order to ascertain the relationship between stomatal control and plant performance. The experiment was conducted in a common garden environment resembling rainfall and temperature conditions that two of the three species are expected to encounter in the near future. In addition, gas exchange was monitored both at the leaf and at the whole-plant level using a transient-state closed chamber, which allowed us to model the response of the whole plant to increased air evaporative demand (AED). P. sylvestris was the species with lowest survival and performance. By contrast, P. halepensis showed no mortality, much higher growth (two orders of magnitude), carbon assimilation (ca. 14 fold higher) and stomatal conductance and water transpiration (ca. 4 fold higher) than the other two species. As a consequence, P. halepensis exhibited higher values of water-use efficiency than the rest of the species even at the highest values of AED. Overall, the results strongly support that the weaker stomatal control of P. halepensis, which is linked to lower stem water potential, enabled this species to maximize carbon uptake under drought stress and ultimately outperform the more water conservative P. nigra and P. sylvestris. These results suggest that under a hotter drought scenario P. nigra and P. sylvestris would very likely suffer increased mortality, whereas P. halepensis could maintain

  1. The comparison of naturally weathered oil and artificially photo-degraded oil at the molecular level by a combination of SARA fractionation and FT-ICR MS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Islam, Ananna; Cho, Yunju; Yim, Un Hyuk; Shim, Won Joon; Kim, Young Hwan; Kim, Sunghwan

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • Weathered oils from the Hebei Spirit oil spill and photo degraded oils are compared. • We investigate changes of polar species at the molecular level by 15T FT-ICR MS. • Significant reduction of sulfur class compounds in saturates fraction is observed. • The relative abundance of protonated compounds (presumably basic nitrogen compounds) increase after degradation. • Changes of polar compounds occurred by natural and photo degradation are similar. -- Abstract: Two sets of oil samples, one obtained from different weathering stages of the M/V Hebei Spirit oil spill site and the other prepared by an in vitro photo-degradation experiment, were analyzed and compared at the molecular level by atmospheric pressure photo-ionization coupled with Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FT-ICR MS). For a more detailed comparison at the molecular level, the oil samples were separated into saturate, aromatic, resin, and asphaltene (SARA) fractions before MS analysis. Gravimetric analysis of the SARA fractions revealed a decreased weight percentage of the aromatic fraction and an increased resin fraction in both sets of samples. Molecular-level investigations of the SARA fractions showed a significant reduction in the S 1 class in the saturate fraction and increase of S 1 O 1 class compounds with high DBE values in resin fraction. Levels of N 1 and N 1 O 1 class compounds resulting in protonated ions (presumably basic nitrogen compounds) increased after degradation compared to compounds generating molecular ions (presumably non-basic nitrogen compounds). This study revealed changes occurring in heteroatom polar species of crude oils such as sulfur and nitrogen containing compounds that have not been easily detected with conventional GC based techniques

  2. Plasma levels of pollutants are much higher in loggerhead turtle populations from the Adriatic Sea than in those from open waters (Eastern Atlantic Ocean).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucchia, Matteo; Camacho, María; Santos, Marcelo R D; Boada, Luis D; Roncada, Paola; Mateo, Rafael; Ortiz-Santaliestra, Manuel E; Rodríguez-Estival, Jaime; Zumbado, Manuel; Orós, Jorge; Henríquez-Hernández, Luis A; García-Álvarez, Natalia; Luzardo, Octavio P

    2015-08-01

    In this paper we determined the levels of 63 environmental contaminants, including organic (PCBs, organochlorine pesticides, and PAHs) and inorganic (As, Cd, Cu, Pb, Hg and Zn) compounds in the blood of loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta) from two comparable populations that inhabit distinct geographic areas: the Adriatic Sea (Mediterranean basin) and the Canary Islands (Eastern Atlantic Ocean). All animals were sampled at the end of a period of rehabilitation in centers of wildlife recovery, before being released back into the wild, so they can be considered to be in good health condition. The dual purpose of this paper is to provide reliable data on the current levels of contamination of this species in these geographic areas, and secondly to compare the results of both populations, as it has been reported that marine biota inhabiting the Mediterranean basin is exposed to much higher pollution levels than that which inhabit in other areas of the planet. According to our results it is found that current levels of contamination by organic compounds are considerably higher in Adriatic turtles than in the Atlantic ones (∑PCBs, 28.45 vs. 1.12ng/ml; ∑OCPs, 1.63 vs. 0.19ng/ml; ∑PAHs, 13.39 vs. 4.91ng/ml; pmercury (5.74 vs. 7.59μg/ml, p<0.01). The results of this study confirm that the concentrations are larger in turtles from the Mediterranean, probably related to the high degree of anthropogenic pressure in this basin, and thus they are more likely to suffer adverse effects related to contaminants. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Higher Serum Direct Bilirubin Levels Were Associated with a Lower Risk of Incident Chronic Kidney Disease in Middle Aged Korean Men

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryu, Seungho; Chang, Yoosoo; Zhang, Yiyi; Woo, Hee-Yeon; Kwon, Min-Jung; Park, Hyosoon; Lee, Kyu-Beck; Son, Hee Jung; Cho, Juhee; Guallar, Eliseo

    2014-01-01

    Background The association between serum bilirubin levels and incident chronic kidney disease (CKD) in the general population is unknown. We aimed to examine the association between serum bilirubin concentration (total, direct, and indirect) and the risk of incident CKD. Methods and Findings Longitudinal cohort study of 12,823 Korean male workers 30 to 59 years old without CKD or proteinuria at baseline participating in medical health checkup program in a large worksite. Study participants were followed for incident CKD from 2002 through 2011. Estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) was estimated by using the CKD-EPI equation. CKD was defined as eGFR bilirubin were 0.93 (95% CI 0.67–1.28), 0.88 (0.60–1.27) and 0.60 (0.42–0.88), respectively. In multivariable models, the adjusted hazard ratio for CKD comparing the highest to the lowest quartile of serum direct bilirubin levels was 0.60 (95% CI 0.41–0.87; P trend = 0.01). Neither serum total nor indirect bilirubin levels were significantly associated with the incidence of CKD. Conclusions Higher serum direct bilirubin levels were significantly associated with a lower risk of developing CKD, even adjusting for a variety of cardiometabolic parameters. Further research is needed to elucidate the mechanisms underlying this association and to establish the role of serum direct bilirubin as a marker for CKD risk. PMID:24586219

  4. Higher levels of physical fitness are associated with a reduced risk of suffering sarcopenic obesity and better perceived health among the elderly: the EXERNET multi-center study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedrero-Chamizo, R; Gómez-Cabello, A; Meléndez, A; Vila-Maldonado, S; Espino, L; Gusi, N; Villa, G; Casajús, J A; González-Gross, M; Ara, I

    2015-02-01

    To evaluate the associations between physical fitness levels, health related quality of life (HRQoL) and sarcopenic obesity (SO) and to analyze the usefulness of several physical fitness tests as a screening tool for detecting elderly people with an increased risk of suffering SO. Cross-sectional analysis of a population-based sample. Non-institutionalized Spanish elderly participating in the EXERNET multi-centre study. 2747 elderly subjects aged 65 and older. Body weight, height and body mass index were evaluated in each subject. Body composition was measured by bioelectrical impedance. Four SO groups were created based on percentage of body fat and relative muscle mass; 1) normal group, 2) sarcopenic group, 3) obesity group and 4) SO group. Physical fitness was evaluated using 8 tests (balance, lower and upper body strength, lower and upper body flexibility, agility, walking speed and aerobic capacity). Three tertiles were created for each test based on the calculated scores. HRQoL was assessed using the EuroQol visual analogue scale. Participants with SO showed lower physical fitness levels compared with normal subjects. Better balance, agility, and aerobic capacity were associated to a lower risk of suffering SO in the fittest men (odds ratio health was associated with better physical fitness performance. Higher levels of physical fitness were associated with a reduced risk of suffering SO and better perceived health among elderly. SO elderly people have lower physical functional levels than healthy counterparts.

  5. Organized Sport Participation Is Associated with Higher Levels of Overall Health-Related Physical Activity in Children (CHAMPS Study-DK)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hebert, Jeffrey J.; Møller, Niels C.; Andersen, Lars B.; Wedderkopp, Niels

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Many children fail to meet international guideline recommendations for health-related activity (≥60 minutes/day of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity [MVPA]), and intervention studies to date have reported negligible effects. Objective Explore the associations of organized leisure-time sport participation with overall physical activity levels and health-related physical activity guideline concordance. Methods This prospective cohort study was nested in the Childhood Health, Activity, and Motor Performance School Study Denmark. Study participants were a representative sample of 1124 primary school students. Organized leisure-time sport participation was reported via text messaging and physical activity was objectively measured over seven days with accelerometry. Associations between sport participation and physical activity level were explored with multilevel mixed-effects regression models and reported with beta coefficients (b) and adjusted odds ratios (aOR). Results Participants were 53% female, with mean(SD) age = 8.4(1.4) years. Boys were more active than girls (psports (gymnastics, basketball, volleyball) were inconsistent. Conclusions Many children, particularly girls and those in higher grade levels do not adhere to health-related physical activity recommendations. Organized leisure-time sport participation may be a viable strategy to increase overall health-related physical activity levels and international guideline concordance in children. PMID:26262678

  6. Organized Sport Participation Is Associated with Higher Levels of Overall Health-Related Physical Activity in Children (CHAMPS Study-DK).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hebert, Jeffrey J; Møller, Niels C; Andersen, Lars B; Wedderkopp, Niels

    2015-01-01

    Many children fail to meet international guideline recommendations for health-related activity (≥60 minutes/day of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity [MVPA]), and intervention studies to date have reported negligible effects. Explore the associations of organized leisure-time sport participation with overall physical activity levels and health-related physical activity guideline concordance. This prospective cohort study was nested in the Childhood Health, Activity, and Motor Performance School Study Denmark. Study participants were a representative sample of 1124 primary school students. Organized leisure-time sport participation was reported via text messaging and physical activity was objectively measured over seven days with accelerometry. Associations between sport participation and physical activity level were explored with multilevel mixed-effects regression models and reported with beta coefficients (b) and adjusted odds ratios (aOR). Participants were 53% female, with mean(SD) age = 8.4(1.4) years. Boys were more active than girls (p<0.001), and physical activity levels and guideline concordance decreased with age (p<0.001). Soccer participation at any frequency was associated with greater overall MVPA (b[95% CI] = 0.66[0.20,1.13] to 2.44[1.44,3.44]). Depending on participation frequency, this equates to 5-20 minutes more MVPA on the average day and 3 to 15 fold increased odds of achieving recommended levels of health-related physical activity (aOR[95%CI] = 3.04[1.49,6.19] to 14.49[1.97,106.56]). Similar associations were identified among children playing handball at least twice per week. Relationships with other sports (gymnastics, basketball, volleyball) were inconsistent. Many children, particularly girls and those in higher grade levels do not adhere to health-related physical activity recommendations. Organized leisure-time sport participation may be a viable strategy to increase overall health-related physical activity levels and international

  7. The Cortisol Paradox of Trauma-Related Disorders: Lower Phasic Responses but Higher Tonic Levels of Cortisol Are Associated with Sexual Abuse in Childhood.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inga Schalinski

    Full Text Available Inconsistent findings exist for the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis in patients with stress related disorders. Recent studies point towards early life stress as a potential modulator.We investigated the impact of childhood sexual abuse on phasic (saliva cortisol reactivity and tonic (hair cortisol regulation. Furthermore, we assessed predictors on cortisol accumulation in hair. Women (N = 43 with stress-related disorders underwent a standardized assessment of idiographic adverse and traumatic experiences and psychopathology, while measuring salivary cortisol and, heart rate and blood pressure.Comparing women with and without childhood sexual abuse revealed lower rates of responders and distinct levels of salivary cortisol to the interview in conjunction with a lower heart rate for the abused group. Childhood adversities, traumatic experiences, and depression contributed to higher hair cortisol levels.Our finding of lower response rate and distinct salivary cortisol pattern in individuals with childhood sexual abuse compared to individuals without early sexual abuse supports the role of environmental programming for the HPA axis. Both, childhood adversities and traumatic stress emerge as crucial factors for long-term cortisol secretion. Lower or suppressed phasic cortisol responses to trauma-related stimuli may therefore be associated with higher tonic values. Thus, early exposure to adversities may result in a biological distinct phenotype in adult patients with stress-related disorders.

  8. The Cortisol Paradox of Trauma-Related Disorders: Lower Phasic Responses but Higher Tonic Levels of Cortisol Are Associated with Sexual Abuse in Childhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schalinski, Inga; Elbert, Thomas; Steudte-Schmiedgen, Susann; Kirschbaum, Clemens

    2015-01-01

    Inconsistent findings exist for the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis in patients with stress related disorders. Recent studies point towards early life stress as a potential modulator. We investigated the impact of childhood sexual abuse on phasic (saliva cortisol reactivity) and tonic (hair cortisol) regulation. Furthermore, we assessed predictors on cortisol accumulation in hair. Women (N = 43) with stress-related disorders underwent a standardized assessment of idiographic adverse and traumatic experiences and psychopathology, while measuring salivary cortisol and, heart rate and blood pressure. Comparing women with and without childhood sexual abuse revealed lower rates of responders and distinct levels of salivary cortisol to the interview in conjunction with a lower heart rate for the abused group. Childhood adversities, traumatic experiences, and depression contributed to higher hair cortisol levels. Our finding of lower response rate and distinct salivary cortisol pattern in individuals with childhood sexual abuse compared to individuals without early sexual abuse supports the role of environmental programming for the HPA axis. Both, childhood adversities and traumatic stress emerge as crucial factors for long-term cortisol secretion. Lower or suppressed phasic cortisol responses to trauma-related stimuli may therefore be associated with higher tonic values. Thus, early exposure to adversities may result in a biological distinct phenotype in adult patients with stress-related disorders.

  9. Solving Complex Logistics Problems with Multi-Artificial Intelligent System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y.K. Tse

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available The economy, which has become more information intensive, more global and more technologically dependent, is undergoing dramatic changes. The role of logistics is also becoming more and more important. In logistics, the objective of service providers is to fulfill all customers? demands while adapting to the dynamic changes of logistics networks so as to achieve a higher degree of customer satisfaction and therefore a higher return on investment. In order to provide high quality service, knowledge and information sharing among departments becomes a must in this fast changing market environment. In particular, artificial intelligence (AI technologies have achieved significant attention for enhancing the agility of supply chain management, as well as logistics operations. In this research, a multi-artificial intelligence system, named Integrated Intelligent Logistics System (IILS is proposed. The objective of IILS is to provide quality logistics solutions to achieve high levels of service performance in the logistics industry. The new feature of this agile intelligence system is characterized by the incorporation of intelligence modules through the capabilities of the case-based reasoning, multi-agent, fuzzy logic and artificial neural networks, achieving the optimization of the performance of organizations.

  10. Artificial reef evaluation capabilities of Florida counties

    OpenAIRE

    Halusky, Joseph G.; Antonini, Gustavo A.; Seaman, William

    1993-01-01

    Florida's coastal county artificial reef sampling and data management programs are surveyed in this report. The survey describes the county level capability for artificial reef documentation and performance assessment based on their needs, interests, organizational structure and "in-situ" data collection and data management techniques. The. primary purpose of this study is to describe what staffing, training, techniques, organizational procedures and equipment are used by the c...

  11. Artificial hammerhead ribozymes: engineering and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vorobjeva, M A; Davydova, A S; Venyaminova, Aliya G

    2011-01-01

    The properties of hammerhead ribozymes are described. Various hammerhead ribozyme constructs for target RNA cleavage were considered. Approaches to enhancement of the stability of artificial ribozymes in biological media and to regulation of the catalytic activity of hammerhead ribozymes using effector molecules are described. The effect of ribozymes on extended structured natural RNAs is discussed. Applications of artificial hammerhead ribozymes as inhibitors of gene expression at matrix RNA level were considered.

  12. Inflammation, oxidative stress, and higher expression levels of Nrf2 and NQO1 proteins in the airways of women chronically exposed to biomass fuel smoke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mondal, Nandan Kumar; Saha, Hirak; Mukherjee, Bidisha; Tyagi, Neetu; Ray, Manas Ranjan

    2018-01-24

    The study was carried out to examine whether chronic exposure to smoke during daily household cooking with biomass fuel (BMF) elicits changes in airway cytology and expressions of Nrf2 (nuclear factor erythroid 2 [NF-E2]-related factor 2 [Nrf2]), Keap1 (Kelch-like erythroid-cell-derived protein with CNC homology [ECH]-associated protein 1), and NQO1 (NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1) proteins in the airways. For this, 282 BMF-using women (median age 34 year) and 236 age-matched women who cooked with liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) were enrolled. Particulate matter with diameters of LPG. Compared with LPG users, BMF users had 32% more leukocytes in circulation and their sputa were 1.4-times more cellular with significant increase in absolute number of neutrophils, lymphocytes, eosinophils, and alveolar macrophages, suggesting airway inflammation. ROS generation was 1.5-times higher in blood neutrophils and 34% higher in sputum cells of BMF users while erythrocyte SOD was 31% lower and plasma catalase was relatively unchanged, suggesting oxidative stress. In BMF users, Keap1 expression was reduced, the percentage of AEC with nuclear expression of Nrf2 was two- to three-times more, and NQO1 level in sputum cell lysate was two-times higher than that of LPG users. In conclusion, cooking with BMF was associated with Nrf2 activation and elevated NQO1 protein level in the airways. The changes may be adaptive cellular response to counteract biomass smoke-elicited oxidative stress and inflammation-related tissue injury in the airways.

  13. Despite higher glucocorticoid levels and stress responses in female rats, both sexes exhibit similar stress-induced changes in hippocampal neurogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hulshof, Henriëtte J; Novati, Arianna; Luiten, Paul G M; den Boer, Johan A; Meerlo, Peter

    2012-10-01

    Sex differences in stress reactivity may be one of the factors underlying the increased sensitivity for the development of psychopathologies in women. Particularly, an increased hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis reactivity in females may exacerbate stress-induced changes in neuronal plasticity and neurogenesis, which in turn may contribute to an increased sensitivity to psychopathology. The main aim of the present study was to examine male-female differences in stress-induced changes in different aspects of hippocampal neurogenesis, i.e. cell proliferation, differentiation and survival. Both sexes were exposed to a wide variety of stressors, where after differences in HPA-axis reactivity and neurogenesis were assessed. To study the role of oestradiol in potential sex differences, ovariectomized females received low or high physiological oestradiol level replacement pellets. The results show that females in general have a higher basal and stress-induced HPA-axis activity than males, with minimal differences between the two female groups. Cell proliferation in the dorsal hippocampus was significantly higher in high oestradiol females compared to low oestradiol females and males, while doublecortin (DCX) expression as a marker of cell differentiation was significantly higher in males compared to females, independent of oestradiol level. Stress exposure did not significantly influence cell proliferation or survival of new cells, but did reduce DCX expression. In conclusion, despite the male-female differences in HPA-axis activity, the effect of repeated stress exposure on hippocampal cell differentiation was not significantly different between sexes. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. How Difficult is it to Reduce Low-Level Cloud Biases With the Higher-Order Turbulence Closure Approach in Climate Models?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Kuan-Man

    2015-01-01

    Low-level clouds cover nearly half of the Earth and play a critical role in regulating the energy and hydrological cycle. Despite the fact that a great effort has been put to advance the modeling and observational capability in recent years, low-level clouds remains one of the largest uncertainties in the projection of future climate change. Low-level cloud feedbacks dominate the uncertainty in the total cloud feedback in climate sensitivity and projection studies. These clouds are notoriously difficult to simulate in climate models due to its complicated interactions with aerosols, cloud microphysics, boundary-layer turbulence and cloud dynamics. The biases in both low cloud coverage/water content and cloud radiative effects (CREs) remain large. A simultaneous reduction in both cloud and CRE biases remains elusive. This presentation first reviews the effort of implementing the higher-order turbulence closure (HOC) approach to representing subgrid-scale turbulence and low-level cloud processes in climate models. There are two HOCs that have been implemented in climate models. They differ in how many three-order moments are used. The CLUBB are implemented in both CAM5 and GDFL models, which are compared with IPHOC that is implemented in CAM5 by our group. IPHOC uses three third-order moments while CLUBB only uses one third-order moment while both use a joint double-Gaussian distribution to represent the subgrid-scale variability. Despite that HOC is more physically consistent and produces more realistic low-cloud geographic distributions and transitions between cumulus and stratocumulus regimes, GCMs with traditional cloud parameterizations outperform in CREs because tuning of this type of models is more extensively performed than those with HOCs. We perform several tuning experiments with CAM5 implemented with IPHOC in an attempt to produce the nearly balanced global radiative budgets without deteriorating the low-cloud simulation. One of the issues in CAM5-IPHOC

  15. Circulating ghrelin level is higher in HNF1A-MODY and GCK-MODY than in polygenic forms of diabetes mellitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowak, Natalia; Hohendorff, Jerzy; Solecka, Iwona; Szopa, Magdalena; Skupien, Jan; Kiec-Wilk, Beata; Mlynarski, Wojciech; Malecki, Maciej T

    2015-12-01

    Ghrelin is a hormone that regulates appetite. It is likely to be involved in the pathophysiology of varying forms of diabetes. In animal studies, the ghrelin expression was regulated by the hepatocyte nuclear factor 1 alpha (HNF1A). Mutations of the HNF1A gene cause maturity onset diabetes of the young (MODY). We aimed to assess the circulating ghrelin levels in HNF1A-MODY and in other types of diabetes and to evaluate its association with HNF1A mutation status. Our cohort included 46 diabetic HNF1A gene mutation carriers, 55 type 2 diabetes (T2DM) subjects, 42 type 1 diabetes (T1DM) patients, and 31 glucokinase (GCK) gene mutation carriers with diabetes as well as 51 healthy controls. Plasma ghrelin concentration was measured using the immunoenzymatic assay with polyclonal antibody against the C-terminal fragment of its acylated and desacylated forms. Ghrelin concentrations were 0.75 ± 0.32, 0.70 ± 0.21, 0.50 ± 0.20, and 0.40 ± 0.16 ng/ml in patients with HNF1A-MODY, GCK-MODY, T1DM, and T2DM, respectively. The ghrelin levels were higher in HNF1A-MODY and GCK-MODY than in T1DM and T2DM (p MODY groups and common diabetes types remained significant. Analysis by a HNF1A mutation type indicated that ghrelin concentration is similar in patients with different types of sequence differences. Plasma ghrelin level is higher in HNF1A-MODY and GCK-MODY than in the common polygenic forms of diabetes.

  16. PIXE Analysis of Artificial Turf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conlan, Skye; Chalise, Sajju; Porat, Zachary; Labrake, Scott; Vineyard, Michael

    2017-09-01

    In recent years, there has been debate regarding the use of the crumb rubber infill in artificial turf on high school and college campuses due to the potential presence of heavy metals and carcinogenic chemicals. We performed Proton-Induced X-Ray Emission (PIXE) analysis of artificial turf infill and blade samples collected from high school and college campuses around the Capital District of NYS to search for potentially toxic substances. Crumb rubber pellets were made by mixing 1g of rubber infill and 1g of epoxy. The pellets and the turf blades were bombarded with 2.2 MeV proton beams from a 1.1-MV tandem Pelletron accelerator in the Union College Ion-Beam Analysis Laboratory and x-ray energy spectra were collected with an Amptek silicon drift detector. We analyzed the spectra using GUPIX software to determine the elemental concentrations of the samples. The turf infill showed significant levels of Ti, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Br, and Pb. The highest concentration of Br in the crumb rubber was 1500 +/-100 ppm while the highest detectable amount of Pb concentration was 110 +/-20 ppm. The artificial turf blades showed significant levels of Ti, Fe, and Zn with only the yellow blade showing concentrations of V and Bi.

  17. Girls may have lower levels of maternal measles antibodies and higher risk of subclinical measles infection before the age of measles vaccination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martins, Cesario; Bale, Carlitos; Garly, May-Lill; Rodrigues, Amabelia; Lisse, Ida M; Andersen, Andreas; Eriksson, Mia; Benn, Christine S; Whittle, Hilton; Aaby, Peter

    2009-08-20

    Previous studies have suggested that girls may have lower maternal measles antibody levels than boys. Girls might therefore be more likely to contract measles infection before the normal age of measles vaccination at 9 months of age. In connection with a clinical trial of different measles vaccination strategies, we collected pre-measles vaccination blood samples at 4.5 months of age from two subgroups of children. Samples from these children were used to assess possible differences in maternal antibody levels for boys and girls. At 9 months of age another subgroup of children was sampled before the normal measles vaccination; these samples were used to assess the frequency of subclinical measles infection among boys and girls. We determined measles-specific antibody levels for 812 children at 4.5 months of age and for 896 children at 9 months of age. At 4.5 months of age girls were less likely to have protective maternal antibody levels, the male-female ratio for protective antibody level being 1.23 (1.00-1.51). Among children sampled at 9 months of age, girls were more likely to have protective levels, the female-male ratio for having protective antibody levels being 1.65 (0.98-2.78) (p=0.054) and the geometric mean titre was significantly higher for girls (p=0.007). Children who lived in houses with known measles cases were more likely to have protective levels at 9 months of age even though they had not reported measles infection. Since we had excluded children with known measles infection, girls may have been more likely to have had subclinical measles infection. Combining clinical and possible subclinical measles infection, girls tended to be more likely than boys to contract measles infection before 9 months of age, the RR being 1.36 (0.97-1.90). Girls lost maternal measles antibodies more rapidly than boys and well before 9 months of age. They may be more likely to contract subclinical measles infection before the current age of measles vaccination.

  18. Using mineralogy and higher-level taxonomy as indicators of species sensitivity to pH: A case-study of Puget Sound

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shallin Busch

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Information on ecosystem sensitivity to global change can help guide management decisions. Here, we characterize the sensitivity of the Puget Sound ecosystem to ocean acidification by estimating, at a number of taxonomic levels, the direct sensitivity of its species. We compare sensitivity estimates based on species mineralogy and on published literature from laboratory experiments and field studies. We generated information on the former by building a database of species in Puget Sound with mineralogy estimates for all CaCO3-forming species. For the latter, we relied on a recently developed database and meta-analysis on temperate species responses to increased CO2. In general, species sensitivity estimates based on the published literature suggest that calcifying species are more sensitive to increased CO2 than non-calcifying species. However, this generalization is incomplete, as non-calcifying species also show direct sensitivity to high CO2 conditions. We did not find a strong link between mineral solubility and the sensitivity of species survival to changes in carbonate chemistry, suggesting that, at coarse scales, mineralogy plays a lesser role to other physiological sensitivities. Summarizing species sensitivity at the family level resulted in higher sensitivity scalar scores than at the class level, suggesting that grouping results at the class level may overestimate species sensitivity. This result raises caution about the use of broad generalizations on species response to ocean acidification, particularly when developing summary information for specific locations. While we have much to learn about species response to ocean acidification and how to generalize ecosystem response, this study on Puget Sound suggests that detailed information on species performance under elevated carbon dioxide conditions, summarized at the lowest taxonomic level possible, is more valuable than information on species mineralogy.

  19. Artificial reefs and reef restoration in the Laurentian Great Lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLean, Matthew W.; Roseman, Edward; Pritt, Jeremy J.; Kennedy, Gregory W.; Manny, Bruce A.

    2015-01-01

    We reviewed the published literature to provide an inventory of Laurentian Great Lakes artificial reef projects and their purposes. We also sought to characterize physical and biological monitoring for artificial reef projects in the Great Lakes and determine the success of artificial reefs in meeting project objectives. We found records of 6 artificial reefs in Lake Erie, 8 in Lake Michigan, 3 in Lakes Huron and Ontario, and 2 in Lake Superior. We found 9 reefs in Great Lakes connecting channels and 6 reefs in Great Lakes tributaries. Objectives of artificial reef creation have included reducing impacts of currents and waves, providing safe harbors, improving sport-fishing opportunities, and enhancing/restoring fish spawning habitats. Most reefs in the lakes themselves were incidental (not created purposely for fish habitat) or built to improve local sport fishing, whereas reefs in tributaries and connecting channels were more frequently built to benefit fish spawning. Levels of assessment of reef performance varied; but long-term monitoring was uncommon as was assessment of physical attributes. Artificial reefs were often successful at attracting recreational species and spawning fish; however, population-level benefits of artificial reefs are unclear. Stressors such as sedimentation and bio-fouling can limit the effectiveness of artificial reefs as spawning enhancement tools. Our investigation underscores the need to develop standard protocols for monitoring the biological and physical attributes of artificial structures. Further, long-term monitoring is needed to assess the benefits of artificial reefs to fish populations and inform future artificial reef projects.

  20. Computer automation and artificial intelligence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hasnain, S.B.

    1992-01-01

    Rapid advances in computing, resulting from micro chip revolution has increased its application manifold particularly for computer automation. Yet the level of automation available, has limited its application to more complex and dynamic systems which require an intelligent computer control. In this paper a review of Artificial intelligence techniques used to augment automation is presented. The current sequential processing approach usually adopted in artificial intelligence has succeeded in emulating the symbolic processing part of intelligence, but the processing power required to get more elusive aspects of intelligence leads towards parallel processing. An overview of parallel processing with emphasis on transputer is also provided. A Fuzzy knowledge based controller for amination drug delivery in muscle relaxant anesthesia on transputer is described. 4 figs. (author)

  1. Associated factors for higher lead and cadmium blood levels, and reference values derived from general population of São Paulo, Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kira, Carmen Silvia; Sakuma, Alice Momoyo; De Capitani, Eduardo Mello; Umbelino de Freitas, Clarice; Cardoso, Maria Regina Alves; Gouveia, Nelson

    2016-01-01

    Human activities are associated with emissions of various metals into the environment, among which the heavy metals lead and cadmium stand out, as they pose a risk to human life even at low concentrations. Thus, accurate knowledge of the levels of these metals exhibited by the overall population, including children, is important. The aim of this study was to estimate the concentrations of lead and cadmium in the blood of adults, adolescents and children residing in the city of São Paulo, assess factors associated with higher lead and cadmium blood levels, and to establish reference values for this population. The study sample consisted of 669 adults over 20 years old, 264 adolescents aged 12 to 19 years old and 391 children under 11 years old from both genders. The samples were collected at the end of 2007 and during 2008 in different city zones. Higher blood lead concentration was significantly associated with gender, smoking, offal intake, area of residence and age. The blood cadmium concentration was significantly associated with gender, smoking, consumption of distilled beverages and age. The reference values of lead and cadmium established for adults above 20 years old were 33 μg/L and 0.6 μg/L, respectively, for adolescents (12 to 19 years old) were 31 μg/L and 0.6 μg/L, respectively and for children under 11 years old were 29 μg/L and 0.2 μg/L, respectively. The results of this study indicate that the exposure levels of the investigated population to lead and cadmium are low. - Highlights: • The exposure of population of São Paulo city to lead and cadmium is low. • Pb level was associated with gender, smoking, offal intake, area of residence, age. • Cd level was associated with gender, smoking, distilled beverages, age. • RV for Pb in blood for children and adolescents were 29 and 31 μg/L, respectively. • RV for Cd in blood for children and adolescents were 0.2 and 0.6 μg/L, respectively.

  2. Associated factors for higher lead and cadmium blood levels, and reference values derived from general population of São Paulo, Brazil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kira, Carmen Silvia, E-mail: carmkira@ial.sp.gov.br [Instituto Adolfo Lutz, Centro de Materiais de Referência, Av. Dr. Arnaldo, 355, São Paulo, SP CEP 01246-000 (Brazil); Sakuma, Alice Momoyo [Instituto Adolfo Lutz, Centro de Materiais de Referência, Av. Dr. Arnaldo, 355, São Paulo, SP CEP 01246-000 (Brazil); De Capitani, Eduardo Mello [Universidade Estadual de Campinas — UNICAMP, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, Departamento de Clínica Médica, Centro de Controle de Intoxicações (Brazil); Umbelino de Freitas, Clarice [Secretaria de Estado da Saúde/SP, Coordenadoria de Controle de Doenças (Brazil); Cardoso, Maria Regina Alves [Universidade de São Paulo, Faculdade de Saúde Pública, Departamento de Epidemiologia (Brazil); Gouveia, Nelson [Universidade de São Paulo — USP, Faculdade de Medicina, Departamento de Medicina Preventiva (Brazil)

    2016-02-01

    Human activities are associated with emissions of various metals into the environment, among which the heavy metals lead and cadmium stand out, as they pose a risk to human life even at low concentrations. Thus, accurate knowledge of the levels of these metals exhibited by the overall population, including children, is important. The aim of this study was to estimate the concentrations of lead and cadmium in the blood of adults, adolescents and children residing in the city of São Paulo, assess factors associated with higher lead and cadmium blood levels, and to establish reference values for this population. The study sample consisted of 669 adults over 20 years old, 264 adolescents aged 12 to 19 years old and 391 children under 11 years old from both genders. The samples were collected at the end of 2007 and during 2008 in different city zones. Higher blood lead concentration was significantly associated with gender, smoking, offal intake, area of residence and age. The blood cadmium concentration was significantly associated with gender, smoking, consumption of distilled beverages and age. The reference values of lead and cadmium established for adults above 20 years old were 33 μg/L and 0.6 μg/L, respectively, for adolescents (12 to 19 years old) were 31 μg/L and 0.6 μg/L, respectively and for children under 11 years old were 29 μg/L and 0.2 μg/L, respectively. The results of this study indicate that the exposure levels of the investigated population to lead and cadmium are low. - Highlights: • The exposure of population of São Paulo city to lead and cadmium is low. • Pb level was associated with gender, smoking, offal intake, area of residence, age. • Cd level was associated with gender, smoking, distilled beverages, age. • RV for Pb in blood for children and adolescents were 29 and 31 μg/L, respectively. • RV for Cd in blood for children and adolescents were 0.2 and 0.6 μg/L, respectively.

  3. Chernobyl, 30 years after? Analysis of levels of artificial radioactivity of soils in the Alps in 2015. Analyses and comments report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rougier, G.; Bernollin, A.; Barbey, P.; Boilley, D.; Josset, M.; Paris, A.; Dunand, E.

    2015-01-01

    This report presents radioactivity measurements performed in soil samplings (70 square centimetres, 15 to 20 cm deep core sampling) in several sites located in the French Alps, more particularly in the Hautes-Alpes district (col de Rabou in the Devoluy massif, both sides of the col de la Pisse in the Champsaur, near Gap, Grand Morgon, col de Chorges, col d'Izoard), in the Drome district (different places about Lus-la-Croix-Haute), in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence district (col de Fontbelle, col de Restefond), in the Savoy district (col du Galibier, Mont-Cenis), and in the Alpes Maritimes district (Le Boreon). It appears that some high levels of caesium-137 contamination are mainly due to Chernobyl, and, to lesser extent, to French nuclear tests. Associated exposure doses are assessed

  4. Periodontal disease is associated with higher levels of C-reactive protein in non-diabetic, non-smoking acute myocardial infarction patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kodovazenitis, George; Pitsavos, Christos; Papadimitriou, Lambros; Deliargyris, Efthymios N; Vrotsos, Ioannis; Stefanadis, Christodoulos; Madianos, Phoebus N

    2011-12-01

    A link between periodontal disease (PD) and cardiovascular events has been proposed, but confounding by shared risk factors such as smoking and diabetes remains a concern. We examined the prevalence of PD and its contribution to C-reactive protein (CRP) levels in acute myocardial infarction (AMI) patients and in subjects without AMI and with angiographically nonobstructive coronary disease in the absence of these confounding risk factors. Periodontal status and admission CRP levels were evaluated in 87 non-diabetic and non-smoking subjects undergoing cardiac catheterization. The study group comprised of 47 patients with documented AMI, and 40 subjects without AMI and with angiographically nonobstructive coronary disease (ANCD group). Both the prevalence of PD and CRP levels were significantly higher in AMI patients compared with ANCD subjects (38.3% vs. 17.5%, p=0.03 and 44.3 vs. 8.5 mg/L, pperiodontitis may emerge as a novel target for reducing future risk in AMI survivors. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Higher Levels of Caregiver Strain Perceived by Indian Mothers of Children and Young Adults with Cerebral Palsy Who have Limited Self-Mobility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prakash, V; Patel, Anjali M; Hariohm, K; Palisano, Robert J

    2017-02-01

    Describe and compare the caregiver strain experienced among Indian mothers of children and young adults with cerebral palsy (CP) living in low resource settings. 62 consecutive children and young adults with spastic CP (mean age 6.0 ± 4.5, range 2-21) and their parents were recruited from an outpatient physiotherapy department for this cross-sectional study. Ability to walk was classified using the Gross Motor Function Classification System and mother's caregiver strain was measured using caregiver strain index (CSI). Mothers of children and young adults who have limited self-mobility perceived higher caregiver strain (mean CSI score 12.0 ± 1.3, p < 0.05) than mothers of children who can walk (mean CSI score 4.5 ± 3.0, p < 0.05). All 46 mothers of children and youth in GMFCS levels IV and V reported high levels of caregiver stress compared with only three of 16 mothers of children and youth who walk (levels I and II). Physiotherapists and occupational therapists serving children and youth with CP are encouraged to partner with families to identify goals for ease of caregiving, activity, and participation at home and in the community.

  6. [Total artificial heart].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antretter, H; Dumfarth, J; Höfer, D

    2015-09-01

    To date the CardioWest™ total artificial heart is the only clinically available implantable biventricular mechanical replacement for irreversible cardiac failure. This article presents the indications, contraindications, implantation procedere and postoperative treatment. In addition to a overview of the applications of the total artificial heart this article gives a brief presentation of the two patients treated in our department with the CardioWest™. The clinical course, postoperative rehabilitation, device-related complications and control mechanisms are presented. The total artificial heart is a reliable implant for treating critically ill patients with irreversible cardiogenic shock. A bridge to transplantation is feasible with excellent results.

  7. Artificial organs 2010: a year in review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malchesky, Paul S

    2011-03-01

    In this Editor's Review, articles published in 2010 are organized by category and briefly summarized. As the official journal of The International Federation for Artificial Organs, The International Faculty for Artificial Organs, and the International Society for Rotary Blood Pumps, Artificial Organs continues in the original mission of its founders "to foster communications in the field of artificial organs on an international level."Artificial Organs continues to publish developments and clinical applications of artificial organ technologies in this broad and expanding field of organ Replacement, Recovery, and Regeneration from all over the world. We take this time also to express our gratitude to our authors for offering their work to this journal. We offer our very special thanks to our reviewers who give so generously of time and expertise to review, critique, and especially provide such meaningful suggestions to the author's work whether eventually accepted or rejected and especially to those whose native tongue is not English. Without these excellent and dedicated reviewers the quality expected from such a journal could not be possible. We also express our special thanks to our Publisher, Wiley-Blackwell, for their expert attention and support in the production and marketing of Artificial Organs. In this Editor's Review, that historically has been widely received by our readership, we aim to provide a brief reflection of the currently available worldwide knowledge that is intended to advance and better human life while providing insight for continued application of technologies and methods of organ Replacement, Recovery, and Regeneration. We look forward to recording further advances in the coming years. © 2011, Copyright the Author. Artificial Organs © 2011, International Center for Artificial Organs and Transplantation and Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Artificial organs 2011: a year in review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malchesky, Paul S

    2012-03-01

    In this Editor's Review, articles published in 2011 are organized by category and briefly summarized. As the official journal of The International Federation for Artificial Organs, The International Faculty for Artificial Organs, and the International Society for Rotary Blood Pumps, Artificial Organs continues in the original mission of its founders "to foster communications in the field of artificial organs on an international level."Artificial Organs continues to publish developments and clinical applications of artificial organ technologies in this broad and expanding field of organ replacement, recovery, and regeneration from all over the world. We take this time also to express our gratitude to our authors for offering their work to this journal. We offer our very special thanks to our reviewers who give so generously of time and expertise to review, critique, and especially provide meaningful suggestions to the author's work whether eventually accepted or rejected. Without these excellent and dedicated reviewers, the quality expected from such a journal would not be possible. We also express our special thanks to our Publisher, Wiley-Blackwell, for their expert attention and support in the production and marketing of Artificial Organs. In this Editor's Review, that historically has been widely well-received by our readership, we aim to provide a brief reflection of the currently available worldwide knowledge that is intended to advance and better human life while providing insight for continued application of technologies and methods of organ replacement, recovery, and regeneration. We look forward to recording further advances in the coming years. © 2012, Copyright the Author. Artificial Organs © 2012, International Center for Artificial Organs and Transplantation and Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Artificial Organs 2012: a year in review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malchesky, Paul S

    2013-03-01

    In this editor's review, articles published in 2012 are organized by category and briefly summarized. We aim to provide a brief reflection of the currently available worldwide knowledge that is intended to advance and better human life while providing insight for continued application of technologies and methods of organ replacement, recovery, and regeneration. As the official journal of the International Federation for Artificial Organs, the International Faculty for Artificial Organs, and the International Society for Rotary Blood Pumps, Artificial Organs continues in the original mission of its founders "to foster communications in the field of artificial organs on an international level." Artificial Organs continues to publish developments and clinical applications of artificial organ technologies in this broad and expanding field of organ replacement, recovery, and regeneration from all over the world. We take this time also to express our gratitude to our authors for offering their work to this journal. We offer our very special thanks to our reviewers who give so generously of time and expertise to review, critique, and especially provide such meaningful suggestions to the author's work whether eventually accepted or rejected, and especially to those whose native tongue is not English. Without these excellent and dedicated reviewers, the quality expected from such a journal could not be possible. We also express our special thanks to our publisher, Wiley Periodicals, for their expert attention and support in the production and marketing of Artificial Organs. We look forward to recording further advances in the coming years. © 2013, Copyright the Author. Artificial Organs © 2013, International Center for Artificial Organs and Transplantation and Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. BioArtificial polymers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szałata, Kamila; Gumi, Tania

    2017-07-01

    Nowadays, the polymer science has impact in practically all life areas. Countless benefits coming from the usage of materials with high mechanical and chemical resistance, variety of functionalities and potentiality of modification drive to the development of new application fields. Novel approaches of combining these synthetic substances with biomolecules lead to obtain multifunctional hybrid conjugates which merge the bioactivity of natural component with outstanding properties of artificial polymer. Over the decades, an immense progress in bioartificial composites domain allowed to reach a high level of knowledge in terms of natural-like systems engineering, leading to diverse strategies of biomolecule immobilization. Together with different available options, including covalent and noncovalent attachment, come various challenges, related mainly with maintaining the biological activity of fixed molecules. Even though the amount of applications that achieve commercial status is still not substantial, and is expanding continuously in the disciplines like "smart materials," biosensors, delivery systems, nanoreactors and many others. A huge number of remarkable developments reported in the literature present a potential of bioartificial conjugates as a fabrics with highly controllable structure and multiple functionalities, serving as a powerful nanotechnological tool. This novel approach brings closer biologists, chemists and engineers, who sharing their effort and complementing the knowledge can revolutionize the field of bioartificial polymer science.

  11. Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome is correlated with a reduction of soluble VEGF receptor protein level and a higher amount of VEGF-A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietrowski, D; Szabo, L; Sator, M; Just, A; Egarter, C

    2012-01-01

    Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) is a potentially life-threatening condition associated with increased vascular permeability. The vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) system and its receptors have been identified as the main angiogenic factors responsible for increased capillary permeability and are therefore discussed as crucial for the occurrence of OHSS. Recently, a number of soluble receptors for the VEGFs have been detected (sVEGF-Rs) and it has been shown that these sVEGF-Rs compete with the membrane-standing VEGF-R to bind VEGFs. We analyzed the serum levels of soluble VEGF-R1, -R2 and -R3 in 34 patients suffering from OHSS and in 34 controls without this disease. In a subgroup analysis, we correlated the severity of the OHSS with the detected amounts of VEGF-R1, -R2 and -R3. In addition, we determined the amount of total VEGF-A in the samples. All the three soluble VEGF receptors tended to be higher in the control group compared with that in the OHSS group but this difference only reached significance for sVEGF-R2 (mean ± SEM: 15.5 ± 0.6 versus 13.8 ± 0.5 ng/ml, respectively, P< 0.05). In the subgroup analysis, sVEGF-R2 levels decreased as the severity of OHSS increased (OHSS-I: 16.8 ± 1.9 ng/ml and OHSS-III: 12.7 ± 1.0 ng/ml, P< 0.05) Moreover, the serum levels of total VEGF-A were higher in the OHSS group than those in the controls (537.7 ± 38.9 versus 351 ± 53.4 pg/ml, respectively P< 0.05). We propose that VEGF-A plays a role in the occurrence of OHSS, that the amount of biologically available VEGF-A is modulated by sVEGF-Rs and that different combinations of VEGF-A and sVEGF-R levels might contribute to the severity of OHSS.

  12. Modelling exposure of oceanic higher trophic-level consumers to polychlorinated biphenyls: pollution 'hotspots' in relation to mass mortality events of marine mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Handoh, Itsuki C; Kawai, Toru

    2014-08-30

    Marine mammals in the past mass mortality events may have been susceptible to infection because their immune systems were suppressed through the bioaccumulation of environmental pollutants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). We compiled mortality event data sets of 33 marine mammal species, and employed a Finely-Advanced Transboundary Environmental model (FATE) to model the exposure of the global fish community to PCB congeners, in order to define critical exposure levels (CELs) of PCBs above which mass mortality events are likely to occur. Our modelling approach enabled us to describe the mass mortality events in the context of exposure of higher-trophic consumers to PCBs and to identify marine pollution 'hotspots' such as the Mediterranean Sea and north-western European coasts. We demonstrated that the CELs can be applied to quantify a chemical pollution Planetary Boundary, under which a safe operating space for marine mammals and humanity can exist. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Higher levels of serum fibrin-monomer reflect hypercoagulable state and thrombus formation in the left atrial appendage in patients with acute ischemic stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okuyama, Hidenobu; Hirono, Osamu; Liu, Ling; Takeishi, Yasuchika; Kayama, Takamasa; Kubota, Isao

    2006-08-01

    It is sometimes difficult to make a diagnosis of cardioembolic stroke in the stroke care unit, because of the splashing and vanishing of the intracardiac source of the emboli on transesophageal echocardiography. Serum fibrin-monomer (FM) is a new marker for coagulation activity that is useful for identifying older individuals at increased risk of ischemic stroke. Two hundred and four patients with acute ischemic stroke were examined for serum coagulation and fibrinolytic activity on admission, and underwent transesophageal echocardiography within 7 days of onset. Serum levels of FM was significantly higher in patients with left atrial appendage (LAA) thrombus formation (n=24) than in those with no thrombus (88+/-52 vs 14+/-9 microg/ml, pvs 8+/-5 microg/ml, pstroke.

  14. Sleep Deprivation in Young and Healthy Subjects Is More Sensitively Identified by Higher Frequencies of Electrodermal Activity than by Skin Conductance Level Evaluated in the Time Domain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugo F. Posada-Quintero

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available We analyzed multiple measures of the autonomic nervous system (ANS based on electrodermal activity (EDA and heart rate variability (HRV for young healthy subjects undergoing 24-h sleep deprivation. In this study, we have utilized the error awareness test (EAT every 2 h (13 runs total, to evaluate the deterioration of performance. EAT consists of trials where the subject is presented words representing colors. Subjects are instructed to press a button (“Go” trials or withhold the response if the word presented and the color of the word mismatch (“Stroop No-Go” trial, or the screen is repeated (“Repeat No-Go” trials. We measured subjects' (N = 10 reaction time to the “Go” trials, and accuracy to the “Stroop No-Go” and “Repeat No-Go” trials. Simultaneously, changes in EDA and HRV indices were evaluated. Furthermore, the relationship between reactiveness and vigilance measures and indices of sympathetic control based on HRV were analyzed. We found the performance improved to a stable level from 6 through 16 h of deprivation, with a subsequently sustained impairment after 18 h. Indices of higher frequencies of EDA related more to vigilance measures, whereas lower frequencies index (skin conductance leve, SCL measured the reactiveness of the subject. We conclude that indices of EDA, including those of the higher frequencies, termed TVSymp, EDASymp, and NSSCRs, provide information to better understand the effect of sleep deprivation on subjects' autonomic response and performance.

  15. Artificial Intelligence and Moral intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Pana

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available We discuss the thesis that the implementation of a moral code in the behaviour of artificial intelligent systems needs a specific form of human and artificial intelligence, not just an abstract intelligence. We present intelligence as a system with an internal structure and the structural levels of the moral system, as well as certain characteristics of artificial intelligent agents which can/must be treated as 1- individual entities (with a complex, specialized, autonomous or selfdetermined, even unpredictable conduct, 2- entities endowed with diverse or even multiple intelligence forms, like moral intelligence, 3- open and, even, free-conduct performing systems (with specific, flexible and heuristic mechanisms and procedures of decision, 4 – systems which are open to education, not just to instruction, 5- entities with “lifegraphy”, not just “stategraphy”, 6- equipped not just with automatisms but with beliefs (cognitive and affective complexes, 7- capable even of reflection (“moral life” is a form of spiritual, not just of conscious activity, 8 – elements/members of some real (corporal or virtual community, 9 – cultural beings: free conduct gives cultural value to the action of a ”natural” or artificial being. Implementation of such characteristics does not necessarily suppose efforts to design, construct and educate machines like human beings. The human moral code is irremediably imperfect: it is a morality of preference, of accountability (not of responsibility and a morality of non-liberty, which cannot be remedied by the invention of ethical systems, by the circulation of ideal values and by ethical (even computing education. But such an imperfect morality needs perfect instruments for its implementation: applications of special logic fields; efficient psychological (theoretical and technical attainments to endow the machine not just with intelligence, but with conscience and even spirit; comprehensive technical

  16. Assessment of natural and artificial radioactivity levels and radiation hazards and their relation to heavy metals in the industrial area of Port Said city, Egypt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Attia, T E; Shendi, E H; Shehata, M A

    2015-02-01

    A detailed gamma ray spectrometry survey was carried out to make an action in environmental impact assessment of urbanization and industrialization on Port Said city, Egypt. The concentrations of the measured radioelements U-238, Th-232 in ppm, and K-40 %, in addition to the total counts of three selected randomly dumping sites (A, B, and C) were mapped. The concentration maps represent a base line for the radioactivity in the study area in order to detect any future radioactive contamination. These concentrations are ranging between 0.2 and 21 ppm for U-238 and 0.01 to 13.4 ppm for Th-232 as well as 0.15 to 3.8 % for K-40, whereas the total count values range from 8.7 to 123.6 uR. Moreover, the dose rate was mapped using the same spectrometer and survey parameters in order to assess the radiological effect of these radioelements. The dose rate values range from 0.12 to 1.61 mSv/year. Eighteen soil samples were collected from the sites with high radioelement concentrations and dose rates to determine the activity concentrations of Ra-226, Th-232, and K-40 using HPGe spectrometer. The activity concentrations of Ra-226, Th-232, and K-40 in the measured samples range from 18.03 to 398.66 Bq kg(-1), 5.28 to 75.7 Bq kg(-1), and 3,237.88 to 583.12 Bq kg(-1), respectively. In addition to analyze heavy metal for two high reading samples (a 1 and a 10) which give concentrations of Cd and Zn elements (a 1 40 ppm and a 10 42 ppm) and (a 1 0.90 ppm and a 10 0.97 ppm), respectively, that are in the range of phosphate fertilizer products that suggested a dumped man-made waste in site A. All indicate that the measured values for the soil samples in the two sites of three falls within the world ranges of soil in areas with normal levels of radioactivity, while site A shows a potential radiological risk for human beings, and it is important to carry out dose assessment program with a specifically detailed monitoring program periodically.

  17. Cost Utility Analysis of the Cervical Artificial Disc vs Fusion for the Treatment of 2-Level Symptomatic Degenerative Disc Disease: 5-Year Follow-up.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ament, Jared D; Yang, Zhuo; Nunley, Pierce; Stone, Marcus B; Lee, Darrin; Kim, Kee D

    2016-07-01

    The cervical total disc replacement (cTDR) was developed to treat cervical degenerative disc disease while preserving motion. Cost-effectiveness of this intervention was established by looking at 2-year follow-up, and this update reevaluates our analysis over 5 years. Data were derived from a randomized trial of 330 patients. Data from the 12-Item Short Form Health Survey were transformed into utilities by using the SF-6D algorithm. Costs were calculated by extracting diagnosis-related group codes and then applying 2014 Medicare reimbursement rates. A Markov model evaluated quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) for both treatment groups. Univariate and multivariate sensitivity analyses were conducted to test the stability of the model. The model adopted both societal and health system perspectives and applied a 3% annual discount rate. The cTDR costs $1687 more than anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) over 5 years. In contrast, cTDR had $34 377 less productivity loss compared with ACDF. There was a significant difference in the return-to-work rate (81.6% compared with 65.4% for cTDR and ACDF, respectively; P = .029). From a societal perspective, the incremental cost-effective ratio (ICER) for cTDR was -$165 103 per QALY. From a health system perspective, the ICER for cTDR was $8518 per QALY. In the sensitivity analysis, the ICER for cTDR remained below the US willingness-to-pay threshold of $50 000 per QALY in all scenarios (-$225 816 per QALY to $22 071 per QALY). This study is the first to report the comparative cost-effectiveness of cTDR vs ACDF for 2-level degenerative disc disease at 5 years. The authors conclude that, because of the negative ICER, cTDR is the dominant modality. ACDF, anterior cervical discectomy and fusionAWP, average wholesale priceCE, cost-effectivenessCEA, cost-effectiveness analysisCPT, Current Procedural TerminologycTDR, cervical total disc replacementCUA, cost-utility analysisDDD, degenerative disc disease

  18. Artificial intelligence in medicine.

    OpenAIRE

    Ramesh, A. N.; Kambhampati, C.; Monson, J. R. T.; Drew, P. J.

    2004-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Artificial intelligence is a branch of computer science capable of analysing complex medical data. Their potential to exploit meaningful relationship with in a data set can be used in the diagnosis, treatment and predicting outcome in many clinical scenarios. METHODS: Medline and internet searches were carried out using the keywords 'artificial intelligence' and 'neural networks (computer)'. Further references were obtained by cross-referencing from key articles. An overview of ...

  19. Minimally Naturalistic Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Hansen, Steven Stenberg

    2017-01-01

    The rapid advancement of machine learning techniques has re-energized research into general artificial intelligence. While the idea of domain-agnostic meta-learning is appealing, this emerging field must come to terms with its relationship to human cognition and the statistics and structure of the tasks humans perform. The position of this article is that only by aligning our agents' abilities and environments with those of humans do we stand a chance at developing general artificial intellig...

  20. Artificial Intelligence Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    Symposium on Aritificial Intelligence and Software Engineering Working Notes, March 1989. Blumenthal, Brad, "An Architecture for Automating...Artificial Intelligence Project Final Technical Report ARO Contract: DAAG29-84-K-OGO Artificial Intelligence LaboratO"ry The University of Texas at...Austin N>.. ~ ~ JA 1/I 1991 n~~~ Austin, Texas 78712 ________k A,.tificial Intelligence Project i Final Technical Report ARO Contract: DAAG29-84-K-0060

  1. Artificial intelligence in cardiology

    OpenAIRE

    Bonderman, Diana

    2017-01-01

    Summary Decision-making is complex in modern medicine and should ideally be based on available data, structured knowledge and proper interpretation in the context of an individual patient. Automated algorithms, also termed artificial intelligence that are able to extract meaningful patterns from data collections and build decisions upon identified patterns may be useful assistants in clinical decision-making processes. In this article, artificial intelligence-based studies in clinical cardiol...

  2. Principles of artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Nilsson, Nils J

    1980-01-01

    A classic introduction to artificial intelligence intended to bridge the gap between theory and practice, Principles of Artificial Intelligence describes fundamental AI ideas that underlie applications such as natural language processing, automatic programming, robotics, machine vision, automatic theorem proving, and intelligent data retrieval. Rather than focusing on the subject matter of the applications, the book is organized around general computational concepts involving the kinds of data structures used, the types of operations performed on the data structures, and the properties of th

  3. Intelligence: Real or artificial?

    OpenAIRE

    Schlinger, Henry D.

    1992-01-01

    Throughout the history of the artificial intelligence movement, researchers have strived to create computers that could simulate general human intelligence. This paper argues that workers in artificial intelligence have failed to achieve this goal because they adopted the wrong model of human behavior and intelligence, namely a cognitive essentialist model with origins in the traditional philosophies of natural intelligence. An analysis of the word “intelligence” suggests that it originally r...

  4. Offspring of parents with Balkan Endemic Nephropathy have higher C-reactive protein levels suggestive of inflammatory processes: a longitudinal study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tsolova Svetla

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite the characteristic extensive tubulointerstitial fibrosis, Balkan Endemic Nephropathy (BEN is usually considered a non-inflammatory disease. Methods We examined a marker of inflammation, C-reactive protein (CRP, in the offspring of patients with BEN, a population at risk for BEN, prior to development of established disease to determine if an inflammatory process could be identified in the early stages of the disease. In 2003/04, 102 adult offspring whose parents had BEN and a control group of 99 adult offspring of non-BEN patients were enrolled in this prospective study. This cohort was re-examined yearly for four consecutive years. Levels of serum CRP were measured in years 3 and 4 and compared between groups. The data were analyzed with mixed models. Results Compared to controls, offspring of BEN parents had statistically higher CRP levels in two consecutive years, suggestive of early inflammatory reactivity. Whenever the mother was affected by BEN (both parents, or mother only, serum CRP was significantly increased, but not if only the father had BEN. CRP was inversely related to kidney cortex width but not to markers or renal function. Conclusion Early stages of BEN may involve inflammatory processes. The observation of a maternal involvement supports the concept of fetal programming, which has been implicated in the pathogenesis of other chronic kidney diseases.

  5. Cross sections for the vibrational excitation of the H2 X 1Σ+g(v) levels generated by electron collisional excitation of the higher singlet states

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hiskes, J.R.

    1991-01-01

    The excitation cross sections, σ(v,v double-prime), for an H 2 molecule initially in any one of the 15 vibrational levels, v belonging to the ground electronic state and excited to a final vibrational level, v double-prime are evaluated for direct excitations via all members of the excited electronic singlet spectrum. Account is taken of predissociation, autoionization, and radiative decay of the excited electronic spectrum that leads to a final population distribution for the ground electronic state, X 1 Σ + g (v double-prime). For v=0, account is taken explicitly of transitions via the B, C, B', and D electronic states in evaluating the cross sections. The additional contribution of excitations via all Rydberg states lying above the D state enhances these cross sections by approximately 10%. For v>0, cross sections are evaluated taking explicit account of transitions through the B and C states; higher singlet excitations enhance these values by 25%. The choice of the reference total cross sections remains a subjective one, causing the values calculated here to have a possible uncertainty of +20% -30% . For excitations occurring within a hydrogen discharge, collisional excitation-ionization events among the intermediate singlet states will effectively quench the v, v double-prime excitation process for discharge densities in excess of the range 10 15 --10 16 electrons/cm -3

  6. Mangrove associated lignite beds of Malvan, Konkan: Evidence for higher sea-level during the Late Tertiary (Neogene) along the west coast of India

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kumaran, K.P.N.; Shindikar, M.; Limaye, R.B. [Agharkar Research Inst., Pune (India)

    2004-01-25

    Fossil pneumatophores (breathing roots) of Avicennia are recovered and reported from the lignite beds exposed in Kolamb well-section near Malvan, Konkan area of western Maharashtra. The accrued palynoflora is dominated by mangroves (Avicennia, Aegialitis, Excoecaria, Rhizophora and Sonneratia). The spores of mangrove fern (Acrostichum aureum) an estuarine fungus Cirrenalia indicate that these lignites are autochthonous and deposited in a near-shore environment. Presence of foraminiferal linings (= microforaminifera), dinoflagellate cysts, a few calcareous nannofossils and scolecodonts is an irrefutable proof of marine and brackish water influence during the deposition of lignites under intertidal/tidal swampy condition (mangrove influenced) with fair input from freshwater swamps and hinterland. Freshwater-related forms, viz. Ceratopteris thalictroides, Nymphaeaceae, Ctenolophonaceae and hinterland taxa (Cullenia/Durio) of Bombacaceae along with abundance of microthyriaceous fungi in the palynoflora imply a warm humid tropical climate with high precipitation during the depositional period. The presence of Ctenolophon englerianus (= Ctenolophonidites costatus) in Kolamb lignites suggests the Late Neogene (Late Miocene-Early Pliocene) age. The occurrence of pneumatophores and associated lignite deposits about 37 m above the present mean sea-level, and much inland, clearly indicates the higher sea-level strand during Late Neogene along the west coast of India.

  7. Use resources of human exometabolites of different oxidation levels for higher plants cultivation on the soil-like substrate as applied to closed ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tikhomirov, Alexander A.; Kudenko, Yurii; Ushakova, Sofya; Tirranen, Lyalya; Gribovskaya, Illiada; Gros, Jean-Bernard; Lasseur, Christophe

    The technology of ‘wet incineration' of human exometabolites and inedible plants biomass by means of H2 O2 in alternating electromagnetic field to increase a closure of mass exchange processes in bioregenerative life support systems (BLSS) was developed at the Institute of Biophysics of the Siberian Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences (Krasnoyarsk, Russia). Human exometabolites mineralized can be used in a nutrient solution for plants cultivation in the BLSS phototrophic link. The objective of the given work appears to be the study of use resources of human exometabolites of different oxidation levels processed by the abovementioned method for higher plants cultivation on the soil-like substrate (SLS). The mineralized human wastes were tested for the purpose of their sterility. Then the effect of human exometabolites of different oxidation levels both on wheat productivity and on the SLS microflora composition was examined. The SLS extract with a definite amount of human mineralized wastes was used as an irrigation solution. The conducted experiments demonstrated that the H2 O2 decreasing to 1 ml on 1 g of feces and to 0.25 ml on 1 ml of urine had not affected the sterility of mineralized human wastes. Wheat cultivation on the SLS with the addition in an irrigation solution of mineralized human wastes in the amount simulating 1/6 of a daily human diet showed the absence of basic dependence of plants productivity on oxidation level of human exometabolites. Yet the analysis of the microflora composition of the irrigation solutions demonstrated its dependence on the oxidation level of the exometabolites introduced. The amount of yeast-like fungi increased in 20 times in the solutions containing less oxidized exometabolites in comparison with the variant in which the human wastes were subjected to a full-scale oxidation. Besides, the solutions with less oxidized exometabolites displayed a bigger content of plant pathogenic bacteria and denitrifies. Consequently the

  8. Protective intraoperative ventilation with higher versus lower levels of positive end-expiratory pressure in obese patients (PROBESE): study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bluth, T; Teichmann, R; Kiss, T; Bobek, I; Canet, J; Cinnella, G; De Baerdemaeker, L; Gregoretti, C; Hedenstierna, G; Hemmes, S N; Hiesmayr, M; Hollmann, M W; Jaber, S; Laffey, J G; Licker, M J; Markstaller, K; Matot, I; Müller, G; Mills, G H; Mulier, J P; Putensen, C; Rossaint, R; Schmitt, J; Senturk, M; Serpa Neto, A; Severgnini, P; Sprung, J; Vidal Melo, M F; Wrigge, H; Schultz, M J; Pelosi, P; Gama de Abreu, M

    2017-04-28

    Postoperative pulmonary complications (PPCs) increase the morbidity and mortality of surgery in obese patients. High levels of positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) with lung recruitment maneuvers may improve intraoperative respiratory function, but they can also compromise hemodynamics, and the effects on PPCs are uncertain. We hypothesized that intraoperative mechanical ventilation using high PEEP with periodic recruitment maneuvers, as compared with low PEEP without recruitment maneuvers, prevents PPCs in obese patients. The PRotective Ventilation with Higher versus Lower PEEP during General Anesthesia for Surgery in OBESE Patients (PROBESE) study is a multicenter, two-arm, international randomized controlled trial. In total, 2013 obese patients with body mass index ≥35 kg/m 2 scheduled for at least 2 h of surgery under general anesthesia and at intermediate to high risk for PPCs will be included. Patients are ventilated intraoperatively with a low tidal volume of 7 ml/kg (predicted body weight) and randomly assigned to PEEP of 12 cmH 2 O with lung recruitment maneuvers (high PEEP) or PEEP of 4 cmH 2 O without recruitment maneuvers (low PEEP). The occurrence of PPCs will be recorded as collapsed composite of single adverse pulmonary events and represents the primary endpoint. To our knowledge, the PROBESE trial is the first multicenter, international randomized controlled trial to compare the effects of two different levels of intraoperative PEEP during protective low tidal volume ventilation on PPCs in obese patients. The results of the PROBESE trial will support anesthesiologists in their decision to choose a certain PEEP level during general anesthesia for surgery in obese patients in an attempt to prevent PPCs. ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT02148692. Registered on 23 May 2014; last updated 7 June 2016.

  9. Macrophages From Irradiated Tumors Express Higher Levels of iNOS, Arginase-I and COX-2, and Promote Tumor Growth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tsai, C.-S.; Chen, F.-H.; Wang, C.-C.; Huang, H.-L.; Jung, Shih-Ming; Wu, C.-J.; Lee, C.-C.; McBride, William H.; Chiang, C.-S.; Hong, J.-H.

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: To investigate the effects of single and fractionated doses of radiation on tumors and tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs), and to elucidate the potential of TAMs to influence tumor growth. Methods and Materials: A murine prostate cell line, TRAMP-C1, was grown in C57Bl/6J mice to 4-mm tumor diameter and irradiated with either 25 Gy in a single dose, or 60 Gy in 15 fractions. The tumors were removed at the indicated times and assessed for a variety of markers related to TAM content, activation status, and function. Results: In tumors receiving a single radiation dose, arginase (Arg-I), and cycloxygenase-2 (COX-2) mRNA expression increased as a small transient wave within 24 h and a larger persistent wave starting after 3 days. Inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) mRNA was elevated only after 3 days and continued to increase up to 3 weeks. After fractionated irradiation, Arg-1 and COX-2 mRNA levels increased within 5 days, whereas iNOS was increased only after 10 fractions of irradiation had been given. Increased levels of Arg-I, COX-2, and, to a lesser extent, iNOS protein were found to associate with TAMs 1-2 weeks after tumor irradiation. Function of TAMs were compared by mixing them with TRAMP-C1 cells and injecting them into mice; TRAMP-C1 cells mixed with TAMs from irradiated tumors appeared earlier and grew significantly faster than those mixed with TAMs from unirradiated tumors or TRAMP-C1 alone. Conclusions: Tumor-associated macrophages in the postirradiated tumor microenvironment express higher levels of Arg-1, COX-2, and iNOS, and promote early tumor growth in vivo

  10. Increased Zn/Glutathione Levels and Higher Superoxide Dismutase-1 Activity as Biomarkers of Oxidative Stress in Women with Long-Term Dental Amalgam Fillings: Correlation between Mercury/Aluminium Levels (in Hair) and Antioxidant Systems in Plasma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabaña-Muñoz, María Eugenia; Parmigiani-Izquierdo, José María; Bravo-González, Luis Alberto; Kyung, Hee-Moon; Merino, José Joaquín

    2015-01-01

    Background The induction of oxidative stress by Hg can affect antioxidant enzymes. However, epidemiological studies have failed to establish clear association between dental fillings presence and health problems. Objectives To determine whether heavy metals (in hair), antioxidant enzymes (SOD-1) and glutathione levels could be affected by the chronic presence of heavy metals in women who had dental amalgam fillings. Materials and Methods 55 hair samples (42 females with amalgam fillings and 13 female control subjects) were obtained. All subjects (mean age 44 years) who had dental amalgam filling for more than 10 years (average 15 years). Certain metals were quantified by ICP-MS (Mass Spectrophotometry) in hair (μg/g: Al, Hg, Ba, Ag, Sb, As, Be, Bi, Cd, Pb, Pt, Tl, Th, U, Ni, Sn, Ti) and SOD-1 and Glutathione (reduced form) levels in plasma. Data were compared with controls without amalgams, and analyzed to identify any significant relation between metals and the total number of amalgam fillings, comparing those with four or less (n = 27) with those with more than four (n = 15). As no significant differences were detected, the two groups were pooled (Amlgam; n = 42). Findings Hg, Ag, Al and Ba were higher in the amalgam group but without significant differences for most of the heavy metals analyzed. Increased SOD-1 activity and glutathione levels (reduced form) were observed in the amalgam group. Aluminum (Al) correlated with glutathione levels while Hg levels correlated with SOD-1. The observed Al/glutathione and Hg/SOD-1 correlation could be adaptive responses against the chronic presence of mercury. Conclusions Hg, Ag, Al and Ba levels increased in women who had dental amalgam fillings for long periods. Al correlated with glutathione, and Hg with SOD-1. SOD-1 may be a possible biomarker for assessing chronic Hg toxicity. PMID:26076368

  11. Low Levels of Usual Physical Activity Are Associated with Higher 24 h Blood Pressure in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in a Cross-Sectional Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra Teixeira Neto Zucatti

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study is to evaluate the association between usual physical activity and 24 h blood pressure (BP profile in people with type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM. This is a cross-sectional study of 151 participants with type 2 DM. Usual physical activity was assessed by step counting and self-reported questionnaire. BP was measured in office and by 24 h ambulatory BP monitoring (ABPM; 24 h, daytime and nighttime. Mean participant age was 61.1 ± 8.4 years, 64% was women, and mean duration of diabetes was 14.3 ± 8.5 years. Ninety-two percent of participants had hypertension, and office BP was 138 ± 18/78 ± 10 mmHg. Inverse correlations were observed between step count and 24 h BP (systolic, r=−0.186; p=0.022, daytime BP (systolic, r=−0.198; p=0.015, and nighttime BP (pulse pressure, r=−0.190; p=0.019. People were categorized into tertiles of daily step count, and the 1st tertile had higher 24 h systolic BP, daytime systolic BP, daytime mean BP, and daytime systolic BP load than those in the other tertiles, even after adjusting for age and HbA1c. Participants with type 2 DM and low levels of physical activity exhibit higher 24 h and daytime systolic ambulatory BP values as compared with those who performed more steps per day, even after adjustments for confounding factors.

  12. Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) is tolerant to higher levels of salinity than previous guidelines indicated: Implications of field and greenhouse studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putnam, Daniel H.; Benes, Sharon; Galdi, Giuliano; Hutmacher, Bob; Grattan, Steve

    2017-04-01

    Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) is the most widely grown leguminous forage crop in North America and is valued for high productivity, quality, economic value, and for dairy productivity. Alfalfa has historically been classified as moderately sensitive to saline conditions, with yield declines predicted at >2 dS/m in the saturated soil paste extract. However, greenhouse, sand tank, and field studies over the past five years have confirmed that alfalfa can be grown with limited negative effects at much higher salinity levels. A broad collection of alfalfa varieties has exhibited a range of resistance at irrigation water salinities >5 dS/m ECw in greenhouse trials, with significant variation due to variety. USDA-ARS sand tank studies indicated similar or greater tolerances closer to 8 dS/m in the soil water, in addition to confirmation of significant varietal differences. A three-year field study on clay loam soil with applications of 5-7 dS/m ECw irrigation water indicated normal yields and excellent stand survivability. A second field study in the same soil type with levels from 8-10 dS/m ECw showed yield reductions of 10-15% but economic yields were still achieved at those levels. Field and greenhouse studies were conducted with mixed salt saline sodic waters typical of the San Joaquin Valley of California. Field evaluation of variety performance was subject to greater variation due to secondary salinity-soil interactions including water infiltration and crusting problems, not only salinity per-se. Thus, adequate irrigation water availability to the crop may be as important as salinity in impacting yields under field conditions. Once established, the deep-rooted characteristics of alfalfa enable utilization of deeper subsurface moisture, even at moderate to high salinity levels, as documented by USDA lysimeter studies. Significant advantages to salinity-tolerant varieties have been observed. It will be important to consider specific management factors which may enable

  13. Artificial intelligence and information-control systems of robots - 87

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Plander, I.

    1987-01-01

    Independent research areas of artificial intelligence represent the following problems: automatic problem solving and new knowledge discovering, automatic program synthesis, natural language, picture and scene recognition and understanding, intelligent control systems of robots equipped with sensoric subsystems, dialogue of two knowledge systems, as well as studying and modelling higher artificial intelligence attributes, such as emotionality and personality. The 4th Conference draws on the problems treated at the preceding Conferences, and presents the most recent knowledge on the following topics: theoretical problems of artificial intelligence, knowledge-based systems, expert systems, perception and pattern recognition, robotics, intelligent computer-aided design, special-purpose computer systems for artificial intelligence and robotics

  14. Higher Adolescent Body Mass Index is Associated with Lower Regional Gray and White Matter Volumes and Lower Levels of Positive Emotionality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James T Kennedy

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Adolescent obesity is associated with an increased chance of developing serious health risks later in life. Identifying the neurobiological and personality factors related to increases in adiposity is important to understanding what drives maladaptive consummatory and exercise behaviors that result in obesity. Previous research has largely focused on adults with few findings published on interactions among adiposity, brain structure, and personality. In this study, Voxel Based Morphometry (VBM was used to identify associations between gray and white matter volumes and increasing adiposity, as measured by Body Mass Index percentile (BMI%, in 137 adolescents (age range: 9-20 years, Body Mass Index percentile range: 5.16-99.56. Variations in gray and white matter volume and BMI% were then linked to individual differences in personality measures from the Multidimensional Personality Questionnaire (MPQ. After controlling for age and other covariates, BMI% correlated negatively with gray matter volume in the bilateral caudate (right: partial r = -0.338, left: r -0.404, medial prefrontal cortex (partial r = -0.339, anterior cingulate (partial r = -0.312, bilateral frontal pole (right: partial r = -0.368, left: r= -0.316, and uncus (partial r = -0.475 as well as white matter volume bilaterally in the anterior limb of the internal capsule (right: partial r = -0.34, left: r = -0.386, extending to the left middle frontal subgyral white matter. Agentic Positive Emotionality (PEM-AG was correlated negatively with BMI% (partial r = -0.384. PEM-AG was correlated positively with gray matter volume in the right uncus (partial r = 0.329. These results suggest that higher levels of adiposity in adolescents are associated with lower trait levels in reward-related personality domains, as well as structural variations in brain regions associated with reward processing, control, and sensory integration.

  15. Artificial Organs 2015: A Year in Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malchesky, Paul S

    2016-03-01

    In this Editor's Review, articles published in 2015 are organized by category and briefly summarized. We aim to provide a brief reflection of the currently available worldwide knowledge that is intended to advance and better human life while providing insight for continued application of technologies and methods of organ Replacement, Recovery, and Regeneration. As the official journal of The International Federation for Artificial Organs, The International Faculty for Artificial Organs, the International Society for Rotary Blood Pumps, the International Society for Pediatric Mechanical Cardiopulmonary Support, and the Vienna International Workshop on Functional Electrical Stimulation, Artificial Organs continues in the original mission of its founders "to foster communications in the field of artificial organs on an international level." Artificial Organs continues to publish developments and clinical applications of artificial organ technologies in this broad and expanding field of organ Replacement, Recovery, and Regeneration from all over the world. We take this time also to express our gratitude to our authors for providing their work to this journal. We offer our very special thanks to our reviewers who give so generously of their time and expertise to review, critique, and especially provide meaningful suggestions to the author's work whether eventually accepted or rejected. Without these excellent and dedicated reviewers, the quality expected from such a journal could not be possible. We also express our special thanks to our Publisher, John Wiley & Sons for their expert attention and support in the production and marketing of Artificial Organs. We look forward to reporting further advances in the coming years. Copyright © 2016 International Center for Artificial Organs and Transplantation and Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Artificial Organs 2013: a year in review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malchesky, Paul S

    2014-03-01

    In this Editor's Review, articles published in 2013 are organized by category and briefly summarized. We aim to provide a brief reflection of the currently available worldwide knowledge that is intended to advance and better human life while providing insight for continued application of technologies and methods of organ Replacement, Recovery, and Regeneration. As the official journal of The International Federation for Artificial Organs, The International Faculty for Artificial Organs, the International Society for Rotary Blood Pumps, the International Society for Pediatric Mechanical Cardiopulmonary Support, and the Vienna International Workshop on Functional Electrical Stimulation, Artificial Organs continues in the original mission of its founders "to foster communications in the field of artificial organs on an international level". Artificial Organs continues to publish developments and clinical applications of artificial organ technologies in this broad and expanding field of organ Replacement, Recovery, and Regeneration from all over the world. We take this time also to express our gratitude to our authors for offering their work to this journal. We offer our very special thanks to our reviewers who give so generously of time and expertise to review, critique, and especially provide so meaningful suggestions to the author's work whether eventually accepted or rejected and especially to those whose native tongue is not English. Without these excellent and dedicated reviewers the quality expected from such a journal could not be possible. We also express our special thanks to our Publisher, Wiley Periodicals, for their expert attention and support in the production and marketing of Artificial Organs. We look forward to recording further advances in the coming years. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. and International Center for Artificial Organs and Transplantation.

  17. Artificial Organs 2017: A Year in Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malchesky, Paul S

    2018-03-01

    In this Editor's Review, articles published in 2017 are organized by category and summarized. We provide a brief reflection of the research and progress in artificial organs intended to advance and better human life while providing insight for continued application of these technologies and methods. Artificial Organs continues in the original mission of its founders "to foster communications in the field of artificial organs on an international level." Artificial Organs continues to publish developments and clinical applications of artificial organ technologies in this broad and expanding field of organ Replacement, Recovery, and Regeneration from all over the world. Peer-reviewed Special Issues this year included contributions from the 12th International Conference on Pediatric Mechanical Circulatory Support Systems and Pediatric Cardiopulmonary Perfusion edited by Dr. Akif Undar, Artificial Oxygen Carriers edited by Drs. Akira Kawaguchi and Jan Simoni, the 24th Congress of the International Society for Mechanical Circulatory Support edited by Dr. Toru Masuzawa, Challenges in the Field of Biomedical Devices: A Multidisciplinary Perspective edited by Dr. Vincenzo Piemonte and colleagues and Functional Electrical Stimulation edited by Dr. Winfried Mayr and colleagues. We take this time also to express our gratitude to our authors for offering their work to this journal. We offer our very special thanks to our reviewers who give so generously of time and expertise to review, critique, and especially provide meaningful suggestions to the author's work whether eventually accepted or rejected. Without these excellent and dedicated reviewers the quality expected from such a journal could not be possible. We also express our special thanks to our Publisher, John Wiley & Sons for their expert attention and support in the production and marketing of Artificial Organs. We look forward to reporting further advances in the coming years. © 2018 International Center for

  18. DEVELOPING A HUMAN CONTROLLED MODEL FOR SAFE ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE SYSTEMS

    OpenAIRE

    KÖSE, Utku

    2018-01-01

    Artificial Intelligence is known as one of the most effective research field of nowadays and the future. But rapid rise of Artificial Intelligence and its potential to solve all real world problems autonomously, it has caused also several anxieties. Some scientists think that intelligent systems can reach to a level, which is dangerous for the humankind so because of that some precautions should be taken. So, many sub-research fields like Machine Ethics or Artificial Intelligence Safety have ...

  19. Electron-impact collision strengths for excitation of He-like ions from the levels with n = 1 and 2 to all singly excited levels with higher n less than or equal to 5

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sampson, D.H.; Goett, S.J.; Clark, R.E.H.

    1983-01-01

    Intermediate-coupling collision strengths were calculated for all transitions of the kind 1s2p/sup 2S + 1/P/sub J/ - 1sn'l'/sup 2S' + 1/L'/sub J'/ with n' = 3,4 and 5 and l' greater than or equal to 1 (p, d, f, g) for 20 He-like ions with nuclear charge number Z in the range 4 less than or equal to Z less than or equal to 74. The method used is a Coulomb-Born-Exchange method especially well suited for calculating results from any members of an isoelectronic sequence simultaneously. The calculations were made for nine impact-electron energies in threshold units epsilon = 1.0, 1.2, 1.5, 1.9, 2.5, 4.0, 6.0, 10.0, and 15.0. The results are given in the form of fits to a simple function of epsilon that is readily integrated over a Maxwellian to obtain collision rates. The parameters required in obtaining collision strengths for the simpler transitions from the 1s2p levels to the 1sn's levels the 3 less than or equal to n' less than or equal to 5 and for the transitions from the ground level and the 1s2s levels to all singly excited levels with higher n values less than or equal to 5 are given, as well. Results for transitions between energy terms and their jj coupling analogs are also included. In addition, calculated values for the transition energies and the electric-dipole radiative line strengths are given for all transitions. 21 references, 11 tables

  20. Quantification of four artificial sweeteners in Finnish surface waters with isotope-dilution mass spectrometry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perkola, Noora; Sainio, Pirjo

    2014-01-01

    The artificial sweeteners sucralose (SCL), acesulfame (ACS), saccharin (SAC), and cyclamate (CYC) have been detected in environmental waters in Europe and North America. Higher environmental levels are expected in view of the increasing consumption of these food additives. In this study, an isotope-dilution mass spectrometry (IDMS) LC–MS/MS method was developed and validated for quantifying the four artificial sweeteners in boreal lakes (n = 3) and rivers (n = 12). The highest concentrations of ACS, SAC, CYC and SCL were 9,600, 490, 210 and 1000 ng/L, respectively. ACS and SAC were detected in all studied samples, and CYC and SCL in 98% and 56% of the samples. Seasonal trends of ACS and SAC were observed in some rivers. ACS and SCL concentrations in rivers correlated linearly with population equivalents of the wastewater treatment plants in the catchment areas, whereas SAC and CYC concentrations depend more on the source. -- Highlights: • A reliable method for analysing artificial sweeteners in water was validated. • Artificial sweeteners were quantified in boreal rivers and lakes. • Most concentrations were in accordance with previous European studies. • Acesulfame and saccharine concentrations were high in the most contaminated rivers. • Correlation observed between concentrations and mean water throughflow in rivers. -- High concentrations of artificial sweeteners were obtained, which indicates slow or negligible degradation of these compounds in boreal surface waters

  1. Higher tacrolimus trough levels on days 2-5 post-renal transplant are associated with reduced rates of acute rejection.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    O'Seaghdha, C M

    2011-04-06

    We analyzed the association between whole-blood trough tacrolimus (TAC) levels in the first days post-kidney transplant and acute cellular rejection (ACR) rates. Four hundred and sixty-four consecutive, deceased-donor kidney transplant recipients were included. All were treated with a combination of TAC, mycophenolate mofetil and prednisolone. Patients were analyzed in four groups based on quartiles of the mean TAC on days 2 and 5 post-transplant: Group 1: median TAC 11 ng\\/mL (n = 122, range 2-13.5 ng\\/mL), Group 2: median 17 ng\\/mL (n = 123, range 14-20 ng\\/mL), Group 3: median 24 ng\\/mL (n = 108, range 20.5-27 ng\\/mL) and Group 4: median 33.5 ng\\/mL (n = 116, range 27.5-77.5 ng\\/mL). A graded reduction in the rates of ACR was observed for each incremental days 2-5 TAC. The one-yr ACR rate was 24.03% (95% CI 17.26-32.88), 22.20% (95% CI 15.78-30.70), 13.41% (95% CI 8.15-21.63) and 8.69% (95% CI 4.77-15.55) for Groups 1-4, respectively (p = 0.003). This study suggests that higher early TACs are associated with reduced rates of ACR at one yr.

  2. A higher risk of acute rejection of human kidney allografts can be predicted from the level of CD45RC expressed by the recipients' CD8 T cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laurence Ordonez

    Full Text Available Although transplantation is the common treatment for end-stage renal failure, allograft rejection and marked morbidity from the use of immunosuppressive drugs remain important limitations. A major challenge in the field is to identify easy, reliable and noninvasive biomarkers allowing the prediction of deleterious alloreactive immune responses and the tailoring of immunosuppressive therapy in individuals according to the rejection risk. In this study, we first established that the expression of the RC isoform of the CD45 molecule (CD45RC on CD4 and CD8 T cells from healthy individuals identifies functionally distinct alloreactive T cell subsets that behave differently in terms of proliferation and cytokine secretion. We then investigated whether the frequency of the recipients CD45RC T cell subsets before transplantation would predict acute graft rejection in a cohort of 89 patients who had undergone their first kidney transplantation. We showed that patients exhibiting more than 54.7% of CD8 CD45RC(high T cells before transplantation had a 6 fold increased risk of acute kidney graft rejection. In contrast, the proportions of CD4 CD45RC T cells were not predictive. Thus, a higher risk of acute rejection of human kidney allografts can be predicted from the level of CD45RC expressed by the recipients' CD8 T cells.

  3. The relationship between higher social trust and lower late HIV diagnosis and mortality differs by race/ethnicity: results from a state-level analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ransome, Yusuf; Batson, Ashley; Galea, Sandro; Kawachi, Ichiro; Nash, Denis; Mayer, Kenneth H

    2017-04-06

    Black men who have sex with men (MSM) continue to suffer a disproportionate burden of new HIV diagnoses and mortality. To better understand some of the reasons for these profound disparities, we examined whether the association between social trust and late HIV diagnosis and mortality differed by race/ethnicity, and investigated potential indirect effects of any observed differences. We performed generalized structural equation modelling to assess main and interaction associations between trust among one's neighbours in 2009 (i.e. social trust) and race/ethnicity (Black, White, and Hispanic) predicting late HIV diagnosis (a CD4 count ≤200 cell/µL within three months of a new HIV diagnosis) rates and all-cause mortality rates of persons ever diagnosed late with HIV, across 47 American states for the years 2009-2013. We examined potential indirect effects of state-level HIV testing between social trust and late HIV diagnosis. Social trust data were from the Gallup Healthways Survey, HIV data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and HIV testing from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Covariates included state-level structural, healthcare, and socio-demographic factors including income inequality, healthcare access, and population density. We stratified analysis by transmission group (male-to-male, heterosexual, and injection drug use (IDU)). States with higher levels of social trust had lower late HIV diagnosis rates: Adjusted Rate Ratio [aRR] were consistent across risk groups (0.57; 95%CI 0.53-0.62, male-to-male), (aRR 0.58; 95%CI 0.54-0.62, heterosexual) and (aRR 0.64; 95%CI 0.60-0.69, IDU). Those associations differed by race/ethnicity (all p < 0.001). The associations were most protective for Blacks followed by Hispanics, and least protective for Whites. HIV testing mediated between 18 and 32% of the association between social trust and late HIV diagnosis across transmission group but for Blacks relative to Whites only. Social

  4. Artificial intelligence in nanotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sacha, G M; Varona, P

    2013-11-15

    During the last decade there has been increasing use of artificial intelligence tools in nanotechnology research. In this paper we review some of these efforts in the context of interpreting scanning probe microscopy, the study of biological nanosystems, the classification of material properties at the nanoscale, theoretical approaches and simulations in nanoscience, and generally in the design of nanodevices. Current trends and future perspectives in the development of nanocomputing hardware that can boost artificial-intelligence-based applications are also discussed. Convergence between artificial intelligence and nanotechnology can shape the path for many technological developments in the field of information sciences that will rely on new computer architectures and data representations, hybrid technologies that use biological entities and nanotechnological devices, bioengineering, neuroscience and a large variety of related disciplines.

  5. Artificial organ engineering

    CERN Document Server

    Annesini, Maria Cristina; Piemonte, Vincenzo; Turchetti, Luca

    2017-01-01

    Artificial organs may be considered as small-scale process plants, in which heat, mass and momentum transfer operations and, possibly, chemical transformations are carried out. This book proposes a novel analysis of artificial organs based on the typical bottom-up approach used in process engineering. Starting from a description of the fundamental physico-chemical phenomena involved in the process, the whole system is rebuilt as an interconnected ensemble of elemental unit operations. Each artificial organ is presented with a short introduction provided by expert clinicians. Devices commonly used in clinical practice are reviewed and their performance is assessed and compared by using a mathematical model based approach. Whilst mathematical modelling is a fundamental tool for quantitative descriptions of clinical devices, models are kept simple to remain focused on the essential features of each process. Postgraduate students and researchers in the field of chemical and biomedical engineering will find that t...

  6. Artificial intelligence in nanotechnology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sacha, G. M.; Varona, P.

    2013-11-01

    During the last decade there has been increasing use of artificial intelligence tools in nanotechnology research. In this paper we review some of these efforts in the context of interpreting scanning probe microscopy, the study of biological nanosystems, the classification of material properties at the nanoscale, theoretical approaches and simulations in nanoscience, and generally in the design of nanodevices. Current trends and future perspectives in the development of nanocomputing hardware that can boost artificial-intelligence-based applications are also discussed. Convergence between artificial intelligence and nanotechnology can shape the path for many technological developments in the field of information sciences that will rely on new computer architectures and data representations, hybrid technologies that use biological entities and nanotechnological devices, bioengineering, neuroscience and a large variety of related disciplines.

  7. Artificial organs and transplantation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Splendiani, G; Cipriani, S; Vega, A; Casciani, C U

    2003-05-01

    Nowadays artificial devices are not able to totally and undefinitely replace the loss of function of all vital organs and artificial organs can be used only to bridge the time to transplantation, which must be considered the first choice in the therapeutical approach for many chronic diseases. Since general population aging process is leading to an increase of organ demand, the gap between performed and requested transplantation is hard to fill. Xenotransplantation is nowadays only an experimental alternative solution and we have to do our best using available artificial organs to increase and improve the survival of patients waiting for transplantation. In this meeting we particularly dealt about organ function replacing therapy, especially regarding the kidney, heart, liver, pancreas and ear.

  8. Charlas sobre inteligencia artificial

    OpenAIRE

    Álvarez Sánchez, José Ramón; Ferrández Vicente, José Manuel; Paz López, Félix de la

    2014-01-01

    Serie: Informática en Radio 3 La Inteligencia Artificial es una de las ciencias que causa mayor impacto en la sociedad, mucho más si tenemos en cuenta que cambiará el futuro de la humanidad. En España existen actualmente un nutrido grupo de equipos de investigación relacionados con las tecnologías de computación natural-artificial que aúnan sus esfuerzos a través de la RTNAC la Red Temática en Tecnologías de Computación Natural-Artificial . La UNED participa en todas sus actividades desde ...

  9. Artificial Intelligence in Cardiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Kipp W; Torres Soto, Jessica; Glicksberg, Benjamin S; Shameer, Khader; Miotto, Riccardo; Ali, Mohsin; Ashley, Euan; Dudley, Joel T

    2018-06-12

    Artificial intelligence and machine learning are poised to influence nearly every aspect of the human condition, and cardiology is not an exception to this trend. This paper provides a guide for clinicians on relevant aspects of artificial intelligence and machine learning, reviews selected applications of these methods in cardiology to date, and identifies how cardiovascular medicine could incorporate artificial intelligence in the future. In particular, the paper first reviews predictive modeling concepts relevant to cardiology such as feature selection and frequent pitfalls such as improper dichotomization. Second, it discusses common algorithms used in supervised learning and reviews selected applications in cardiology and related disciplines. Third, it describes the advent of deep learning and related methods collectively called unsupervised learning, provides contextual examples both in general medicine and in cardiovascular medicine, and then explains how these methods could be applied to enable precision cardiology and improve patient outcomes. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Artificial intelligence in nanotechnology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sacha, G M; Varona, P

    2013-01-01

    During the last decade there has been increasing use of artificial intelligence tools in nanotechnology research. In this paper we review some of these efforts in the context of interpreting scanning probe microscopy, the study of biological nanosystems, the classification of material properties at the nanoscale, theoretical approaches and simulations in nanoscience, and generally in the design of nanodevices. Current trends and future perspectives in the development of nanocomputing hardware that can boost artificial-intelligence-based applications are also discussed. Convergence between artificial intelligence and nanotechnology can shape the path for many technological developments in the field of information sciences that will rely on new computer architectures and data representations, hybrid technologies that use biological entities and nanotechnological devices, bioengineering, neuroscience and a large variety of related disciplines. (topical review)

  11. Artificial intelligence executive summary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wamsley, S.J.; Purvis, E.E. III

    1984-01-01

    Artificial intelligence (AI) is a high technology field that can be used to provide problem solving diagnosis, guidance and for support resolution of problems. It is not a stand alone discipline, but can also be applied to develop data bases for retention of the expertise that is required for its own knowledge base. This provides a way to retain knowledge that otherwise may be lost. Artificial Intelligence Methodology can provide an automated construction management decision support system, thereby restoring the manager's emphasis to project management

  12. Artificial intelligence in cardiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonderman, Diana

    2017-12-01

    Decision-making is complex in modern medicine and should ideally be based on available data, structured knowledge and proper interpretation in the context of an individual patient. Automated algorithms, also termed artificial intelligence that are able to extract meaningful patterns from data collections and build decisions upon identified patterns may be useful assistants in clinical decision-making processes. In this article, artificial intelligence-based studies in clinical cardiology are reviewed. The text also touches on the ethical issues and speculates on the future roles of automated algorithms versus clinicians in cardiology and medicine in general.

  13. Spatially Resolved Artificial Chemistry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fellermann, Harold

    2009-01-01

    Although spatial structures can play a crucial role in chemical systems and can drastically alter the outcome of reactions, the traditional framework of artificial chemistry is a well-stirred tank reactor with no spatial representation in mind. Advanced method development in physical chemistry has...... made a class of models accessible to the realms of artificial chemistry that represent reacting molecules in a coarse-grained fashion in continuous space. This chapter introduces the mathematical models of Brownian dynamics (BD) and dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) for molecular motion and reaction...

  14. Bayesian artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Korb, Kevin B

    2003-01-01

    As the power of Bayesian techniques has become more fully realized, the field of artificial intelligence has embraced Bayesian methodology and integrated it to the point where an introduction to Bayesian techniques is now a core course in many computer science programs. Unlike other books on the subject, Bayesian Artificial Intelligence keeps mathematical detail to a minimum and covers a broad range of topics. The authors integrate all of Bayesian net technology and learning Bayesian net technology and apply them both to knowledge engineering. They emphasize understanding and intuition but also provide the algorithms and technical background needed for applications. Software, exercises, and solutions are available on the authors' website.

  15. Spatially Resolved Artificial Chemistry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fellermann, Harold

    2009-01-01

    made a class of models accessible to the realms of artificial chemistry that represent reacting molecules in a coarse-grained fashion in continuous space. This chapter introduces the mathematical models of Brownian dynamics (BD) and dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) for molecular motion and reaction......Although spatial structures can play a crucial role in chemical systems and can drastically alter the outcome of reactions, the traditional framework of artificial chemistry is a well-stirred tank reactor with no spatial representation in mind. Advanced method development in physical chemistry has...

  16. Impacts of simulated drought stress and artificial damage on concentrations of flavonoids in Jatropha curcas (L.), a biofuel shrub.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lama, Ang Dawa; Kim, Jorma; Martiskainen, Olli; Klemola, Tero; Salminen, Juha-Pekka; Tyystjärvi, Esa; Niemelä, Pekka; Vuorisalo, Timo

    2016-11-01

    We studied the possible roles of flavonoids in the antioxidant and antiherbivore chemistry in Jatropha curcas (L.), a Latin American shrub that holds great potential as a source of biofuel. Changes in flavonoid concentrations in the leaves of J. curcas seedlings exposed to artificial damage and to different rainfall patterns were assessed by applying a 3 2 -factorial experiment in a greenhouse. The concentrations of different flavonoids in the leaves of seedlings were significantly affected by interaction effects of artificial damage, drought stress and age of the seedling. The highest flavonoid concentrations were obtained in seedlings imposed to th