WorldWideScience

Sample records for identify potential improvements

  1. Identifying improvement potentials in cement production with life cycle assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boesch, Michael Elias; Hellweg, Stefanie

    2010-12-01

    Cement production is an environmentally relevant process responsible for 5% of total anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions and 7% of industrial fuel use. In this study, life cycle assessment is used to evaluate improvement potentials in the cement production process in Europe and the USA. With a current fuel substitution rate of 18% in Europe and 11% in the USA, both regions have a substantial potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save virgin resources by further increasing the coprocessing of waste fuels. Upgrading production technology would be particularly effective in the USA where many kiln systems with very low energy efficiency are still in operation. Using best available technology and a thermal substitution rate of 50% for fuels, greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced by 9% for Europe and 18% for the USA per tonne of cement. Since clinker production is the dominant pollution producing step in cement production, the substitution of clinker with mineral components such as ground granulated blast furnace slag or fly ash is an efficient measure to reduce the environmental impact. Blended cements exhibit substantially lower environmental footprints than Portland cement, even if the substitutes feature lower grindability and require additional drying and large transport distances. The highest savings in CO(2) emissions and resource consumption are achieved with a combination of measures in clinker production and cement blending.

  2. Eco-Efficient Process Improvement at the Early Development Stage: Identifying Environmental and Economic Process Hotspots for Synergetic Improvement Potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccinno, Fabiano; Hischier, Roland; Seeger, Stefan; Som, Claudia

    2018-05-15

    We present here a new eco-efficiency process-improvement method to highlight combined environmental and costs hotspots of the production process of new material at a very early development stage. Production-specific and scaled-up results for life cycle assessment (LCA) and production costs are combined in a new analysis to identify synergetic improvement potentials and trade-offs, setting goals for the eco-design of new processes. The identified hotspots and bottlenecks will help users to focus on the relevant steps for improvements from an eco-efficiency perspective and potentially reduce their associated environmental impacts and production costs. Our method is illustrated with a case study of nanocellulose. The results indicate that the production route should start with carrot pomace, use heat and solvent recovery, and deactivate the enzymes with bleach instead of heat. To further improve the process, the results show that focus should be laid on the carrier polymer, sodium alginate, and the production of the GripX coating. Overall, the method shows that the underlying LCA scale-up framework is valuable for purposes beyond conventional LCA studies and is applicable at a very early stage to provide researchers with a better understanding of their production process.

  3. Can inbound and domestic medical tourism improve your bottom line? Identifying the potential of a U.S. tourism market.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fottler, Myron D; Malvey, Donna; Asi, Yara; Kirchner, Sarah; Warren, Natalia A

    2014-01-01

    In large part due to current economic conditions and the political uncertainties of healthcare reform legislation, hospitals need to identify new sources of revenue. Two potentially untapped sources are inbound (international) and domestic (within the United States) medical tourists. This case study uses data from a large, urban healthcare system in the southeastern United States to quantify its potential market opportunities for medical tourism. The data were mined from electronic health records, and descriptive frequency analysis was used to provide a preliminary market assessment. This approach permits healthcare systems to move beyond anecdotal information and assess the relative market potential of their particular geographic area and the diagnostic services they offer for attracting inbound and domestic medical tourists. Implications for healthcare executives and guidance on how they can focus marketing efforts are discussed.

  4. Using Nurse Ratings of Physician Communication in the ICU To Identify Potential Targets for Interventions To Improve End-of-Life Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, Kathleen J; Downey, Lois; Nielsen, Elizabeth L; Treece, Patsy D; Shannon, Sarah E; Curtis, J Randall; Engelberg, Ruth A

    2016-03-01

    Communication among doctors, nurses, and families contributes to high-quality end-of-life care, but is difficult to improve. Our objective was to identify aspects of communication appropriate for interventions to improve quality of dying in the intensive care unit (ICU). This observational study used data from a cluster-randomized trial of an interdisciplinary intervention to improve end-of-life care at 15 Seattle/Tacoma area hospitals (2003-2008). Nurses completed surveys for patients dying in the ICU. We examined associations between nurse-assessed predictors (physician-nurse communication, physician-family communication) and nurse ratings of patients' quality of dying (nurse-QODD-1). Based on 1173 nurse surveys, four of six physician-nurse communication topics were positively associated with nurse-QODD-1: family questions, family dynamics, spiritual/religious issues, and cultural issues. Discussions between nurses and physicians about nurses' concerns for patients or families were negatively associated. All physician-family communication ratings, as assessed by nurses, were positively associated with nurse-QODD-1: answering family's questions, listening to family, asking about treatments patient would want, helping family decide patient's treatment wishes, and overall communication. Path analysis suggested overall physician-family communication and helping family incorporate patient's wishes were directly associated with nurse-QODD-1. Several topics of physician-nurse communication, as rated by nurses, were associated with higher nurse-rated quality of dying, whereas one topic, nurses' concerns for patient or family, was associated with poorer ratings. Higher nurse ratings of physician-family communication were uniformly associated with higher quality of dying, highlighting the importance of this communication. Physician support of family decision making was particularly important, suggesting a potential target for interventions to improve end-of-life care.

  5. On a European collaboration to identify organizational models, potential shortcomings and improvement options in out-of-hours primary health care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leutgeb, Ruediger; Walker, Nicola; Remmen, Roy; Klemenc-Ketis, Zalika; Szecsenyi, Joachim; Laux, Gunter

    2014-09-01

    Abstract Background: Out-of-hours care (OOHC) provision is an increasingly challenging aspect in the delivery of primary health care services. Although many European countries have implemented organizational models for out-of-hours primary care, which has been traditionally delivered by general practitioners, health care providers throughout Europe are still looking to resolve current challenges in OOHC. It is within this context that the European Research Network for Out-of-Hours Primary Health Care (EurOOHnet) was established in 2010 to investigate the provision of out-of-hours care across European countries, which have diverse political and health care systems. In this paper, we report on the EurOOHnet work related to OOHC organizational models, potential shortcomings and improvement options in out-of-hours primary health care. Needs assessment: The EurOOHnet expert working party proposed that models for OOHC should be reviewed to evaluate the availability and accessibility of OOHC for patients while also seeking ways to make the delivery of care more satisfying for service providers. To move towards resolution of OOHC challenges in primary care, as the first stage, the EurOOHnet expert working party identified the following key needs: clear and uniform definitions of the different OOHC models between different countries; adequate-ideally transnational-definitions of urgency levels and corresponding data; and educational programmes for nurses and doctors (e.g. in the use of a standardized triage system for OOHC). Finally, the need for a modern system of data transfer between different health care providers in regular care and providers in OOHC to prevent information loss was identified.

  6. Interchange. Program Improvement Products Identified through Networking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohio State Univ., Columbus. National Center for Research in Vocational Education.

    This catalog lists exemplary field-based program improvement products identified by the Dissemination and Utilization Products and Services Program (D&U) at the National Center for Research in Vocational Education. It is designed to increase awareness of these products among vocational educators and to provide information about them that…

  7. Insight about Norwegian Millennials and Blood Donation - A qualitative Study on Experiences, Expectations and Perceptions that identify potential Areas of Improvement and Innovation

    OpenAIRE

    Fredriksen, Hilde Vestby

    2017-01-01

    Norway needs more blood donors to increase the preparedness. With the decreasing number of blood donors, the preparedness situation is put in danger if catastrophes or epidemics should occur. Research about how blood donation should be organized exists, but often lack user-centricity when approaching the problem. This thesis offers an exploratory and problem identifying contribution to this problem. A qualitative and user-centred approach was taken, where 18 young adults who both are an...

  8. Anesthesiology leadership rounding: identifying opportunities for improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gravenstein, Dietrich; Ford, Susan; Enneking, F Kayser

    2012-01-01

    Rounding that includes participation of individuals with authority to implement changes has been advocated as important to the transformation of an institution into a high-quality and safe organization. We describe a Department of Anesthesiology's experience with leadership rounding. The Department Chair or other senior faculty designate, a quality coordinator, up to four residents, the ward charge nurse, and patient nurses participated in rounds at bedsides. During a 23-month period, 14 significant opportunities to improve care were identified. Nurses identified 5 of these opportunities, primary team physicians 2, the rounding team 4, and patients or their family members another 3. The anesthesiology service had sole or shared responsibility for 10 improvements. A variety of organizations track specific measures across all phases of the patient experience to gauge quality of care. Chart auditing tools for detecting threats to safety are often used. These measures and tools missed opportunities for improvement that were discovered only through rounding. We conclude that the introduction of leadership rounding by an anesthesiology service can identify opportunities for improving quality that are not captured by conventional efforts.

  9. An improved potential for krypton

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aziz, R.A.

    1979-01-01

    An improved potential for krypton is presented. It has the simple but realistic form used by Aziz and Chen for argon based on the HFD potential suggested by Ahlrichs et.al. The potential, with known long-range behaviour, was fitted to second virial, viscosity and thermal conductivity data. The potential appears to have the best overall predictive ability for dilute gas, bulk and microscopic data. (author)

  10. Identifying Potential Child Abuse through Oral Examination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jillian N. Printz

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Limited reports of oropharyngeal trauma exist in the literature even though this type of injury is extremely common in pediatric populations. There are no widely agreed upon diagnostic and management tools for such injuries in abuse cases, emphasizing the importance of reporting rare cases of orofacial trauma. This case report of a soft palate laceration demonstrates an instance of initially unrecognized potential child abuse. We aim to clarify understanding of such injuries. Furthermore, the report highlights the need for recognition of oral signs of child abuse in order to promote early detection, reporting, and appropriate management.

  11. Identifying potential dropouts from college physics classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wollman, Warren; Lawrenz, Frances

    Hudson and Rottman (1981) established that mathematics ability is probably a secondary factor influencing dropout from college physics courses. Other factors remain to be found for predicting who will drop out or at least have difficulty with the course. When mathematics ability is coupled with general indicators of performance (total GPA and ACT natural science), prediction of performance for those who complete the course is substantially improved. Moreover, discriminant analyses reveal who will have at least some difficulty, but not who will drop out. The problem of isolating specific weaknesses of students who have difficulty persists. Physics achievement appears to depend on mathematics ability only to the extent that students possess the ability to utilize mathematics knowledge for solving physics problems. Identification of the specific aspects of this ability as well as the specific deficiencies leading to dropout should be the object of future research. For the present, interviews might be more revealing than group testing methods.

  12. Organizational potentialities of photofluorography improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Astrakhantsev, F.A.; Chikirdin, Eh.G.

    1993-01-01

    The necessity for fluorography application is connected with the possibility of identifying voluminus and deformable changes in lungs, mediastinum in a great number of patients within a short period of time. It is advisable to improve clinical and economical efficiency of fluorography. The fluorography efficiency is higher in groups with higher disease risk. The proposed fluorography quesionnaire for six groups of risk may be completed by computer

  13. Modelling intelligence-led policing to identify its potential

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hengst-Bruggeling, M. den; Graaf, H.A.L.M. de; Scheepstal, P.G.M. van

    2014-01-01

    lntelligence-led policing is a concept of policing that has been applied throughout the world. Despite some encouraging reports, the effect of intelligence-led policing is largely unknown. This paper presents a method with which it is possible to identify intelligence-led policing's potential to

  14. A GIS methodology to identify potential corn stover collection locations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Haddad, Monica A. [Department of Community and Regional Planning, 583 College of Design, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011-3095 (United States); Anderson, Paul F. [Department of Landscape Architecture, 481 College of Design, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011 (United States); Department of Agronomy, 481 College of Design, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011 (United States)

    2008-12-15

    In this study, we use geographic information systems technology to identify potential locations in a Midwestern region for collection and storage of corn stover for use as biomass feedstock. Spatial location models are developed to identify potential collection sites along an existing railroad. Site suitability analysis is developed based on two main models: agronomic productivity potential and environmental costs. The analysis includes the following steps: (1) elaboration of site selection criteria; (2) identification of the study region and service area based on transportation network analysis; (3) reclassification of input spatial layers based on common scales; (4) overlaying the reclassified spatial layers with equal weights to generate the two main models; and (5) overlaying the main models using different weights. A pluralistic approach is adopted, presenting three different scenarios as alternatives for the potential locations. Our results suggest that there is a significant subset of potential sites that meet site selection criteria. Additional studies are needed to evaluate potential sites through field visits, assess economic and social costs, and estimate the proportion of corn producers willing to sell and transport corn stover to collection facilities. (author)

  15. Identifying potential kidney donors using social networking web sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Alexander; Anderson, Emily E; Turner, Hang T; Shoham, David; Hou, Susan H; Grams, Morgan

    2013-01-01

    Social networking sites like Facebook may be a powerful tool for increasing rates of live kidney donation. They allow for wide dissemination of information and discussion and could lessen anxiety associated with a face-to-face request for donation. However, sparse data exist on the use of social media for this purpose. We searched Facebook, the most popular social networking site, for publicly available English-language pages seeking kidney donors for a specific individual, abstracting information on the potential recipient, characteristics of the page itself, and whether potential donors were tested. In the 91 pages meeting inclusion criteria, the mean age of potential recipients was 37 (range: 2-69); 88% were US residents. Other posted information included the individual's photograph (76%), blood type (64%), cause of kidney disease (43%), and location (71%). Thirty-two percent of pages reported having potential donors tested, and 10% reported receiving a live-donor kidney transplant. Those reporting donor testing shared more potential recipient characteristics, provided more information about transplantation, and had higher page traffic. Facebook is already being used to identify potential kidney donors. Future studies should focus on how to safely, ethically, and effectively use social networking sites to inform potential donors and potentially expand live kidney donation. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

  16. Identifying product development crises: The potential of adaptive heuristics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Münzberger, C.; Stingl, Verena; Oehmen, Josef

    2017-01-01

    This paper introduces adaptive heuristics as a tool to identify crises in design projects and highlights potential applications of these heuristics as decision support tool for crisis identification. Crises may emerge slowly or suddenly, and often have ambiguous signals. Thus the identification...... for the application of heuristics in design sciences. To achieve this, the paper compares crises to 'business as usual', and presents sixteen indicators for emerging crises. These indicators are potential cues for adaptive heuristics. Specifically three adaptive heuristics, One-single-cue, Fast-and-Frugal-Trees...

  17. Antibody Arrays Identify Potential Diagnostic Markers of Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian J. Peter

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC is the third leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide. Effective treatment of HCC patients is hampered by the lack of sensitive and specific diagnostic markers of HCC. Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP, the currently used HCC marker, misses 30%–50% of HCC patients, who therefore remain undiagnosed and untreated. In order to identify novel diagnostic markers that can be used individually or in combination with AFP, we used an antibody array platform to detect the levels of candidate proteins in the plasma of HCC patients (n = 48 and patients with chronic hepatitis B or C viral infections (n = 19 (both of which are the major risk factors of HCC. We identified 7 proteins that significantly differentiate HCC patients from hepatitis patients (p < 0.05 (AFP, CTNNB, CSF1, SELL, IGFBP6, IL6R, and VCAM1.Importantly, we also identified 8 proteins that significantly differentiate HCC patients with ‘normal’ levels of AFP (<20 ng/ml from hepatitis patients (p < 0.05 (IL1RN, IFNG, CDKN1A, RETN, CXCL14, CTNNB, FGF2, and SELL. These markers are potentially important complementary markers to AFP. Using an independent immunoassay method in an independent group of 23 HCC patients and 22 hepatitis patients, we validated that plasma levels of CTNNB were significantly higher in the HCC group (p = 0.020. In conclusion, we used an antibody array platform to identify potential circulating diagnostic markers of HCC, some of which may be valuable when used in combination with AFP. The clinical utility of these newly identified HCC diagnostic markers needs to be systematically evaluated.

  18. Quality Improvement in Hospitals: Identifying and Understanding Behaviors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lukasz M. Mazur

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Improving operational performance in hospitals is complicated, particularly if process improvement requires complex behavioral changes. Using single-loop and double-loop learning theory as a foundation, the purpose of this research is to empirically uncover key improvement behaviors and the factors that may be associated with such behaviors in hospitals. A two-phased approach was taken to collect data regarding improvement behaviors and associated factors, and data analysis was conducted using methods proposed by grounded theorists. The contributions of this research are twofold. First, five key behaviors related to process improvement are identified, namely Quick Fixing, Initiating, Conforming, Expediting, and Enhancing. Second, based on these observed behaviors, a set of force field diagrams is developed to structure and organize possible factors that are important to consider when attempting to change improvement behaviors. This begins to fill the gap in the knowledge about what factors drive effective improvement efforts in hospital settings.

  19. An improved anti-leech mechanism based on session identifier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jianbiao; Zhu, Tong; Zhang, Han; Lin, Li

    2012-01-01

    With the rapid development of information technology and extensive requirement of network resource sharing, plenty of resource hotlinking phenomenons appear on the internet. The hotlinking problem not only harms the interests of legal websites but also leads to a great affection to fair internet environment. The anti-leech technique based on session identifier is highly secure, but the transmission of session identifier in plaintext form causes some security flaws. In this paper, a proxy hotlinking technique based on session identifier is introduced firstly to illustrate these security flaws; next, this paper proposes an improved anti-leech mechanism based on session identifier, the mechanism takes the random factor as the core and detects hotlinking request using a map table that contains random factor, user's information and time stamp; at last the paper analyzes the security of mechanism in theory. The result reveals that the improved mechanism has the merits of simple realization, high security and great flexibility.

  20. Newer Approaches to Identify Potential Untoward Effects in Functional Foods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marone, Palma Ann; Birkenbach, Victoria L; Hayes, A Wallace

    2016-01-01

    Globalization has greatly accelerated the numbers and variety of food and beverage products available worldwide. The exchange among greater numbers of countries, manufacturers, and products in the United States and worldwide has necessitated enhanced quality measures for nutritional products for larger populations increasingly reliant on functionality. These functional foods, those that provide benefit beyond basic nutrition, are increasingly being used for their potential to alleviate food insufficiency while enhancing quality and longevity of life. In the United States alone, a steady import increase of greater than 15% per year or 24 million shipments, over 70% products of which are food related, is regulated under the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This unparalleled growth has resulted in the need for faster, cheaper, and better safety and efficacy screening methods in the form of harmonized guidelines and recommendations for product standardization. In an effort to meet this need, the in vitro toxicology testing market has similarly grown with an anticipatory 15% increase between 2010 and 2015 of US$1.3 to US$2.7 billion. Although traditionally occupying a small fraction of the market behind pharmaceuticals and cosmetic/household products, the scope of functional food testing, including additives/supplements, ingredients, residues, contact/processing, and contaminants, is potentially expansive. Similarly, as functional food testing has progressed, so has the need to identify potential adverse factors that threaten the safety and quality of these products. © The Author(s) 2015.

  1. Identifying strategies to improve the effectiveness of booster seat laws

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-05-01

    The objective of this project was to identify strategies to improve the effectiveness of booster seat laws. The project explored the possible factors that relate to the use and nonuse of booster seats, and examined the attitudes of law enforcement of...

  2. Potential of DNA sequences to identify zoanthids (Cnidaria: Zoantharia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinniger, Frederic; Reimer, James D; Pawlowski, Jan

    2008-12-01

    The order Zoantharia is known for its chaotic taxonomy and difficult morphological identification. One method that potentially could help for examining such troublesome taxa is DNA barcoding, which identifies species using standard molecular markers. The mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) has been utilized to great success in groups such as birds and insects; however, its applicability in many other groups is controversial. Recently, some studies have suggested that barcoding is not applicable to anthozoans. Here, we examine the use of COI and mitochondrial 16S ribosomal DNA for zoanthid identification. Despite the absence of a clear barcoding gap, our results show that for most of 54 zoanthid samples, both markers could separate samples to the species, or species group, level, particularly when easily accessible ecological or distributional data were included. Additionally, we have used the short V5 region of mt 16S rDNA to identify eight old (13 to 50 years old) museum samples. We discuss advantages and disadvantages of COI and mt 16S rDNA as barcodes for Zoantharia, and recommend that either one or both of these markers be considered for zoanthid identification in the future.

  3. Obtaining subjects' consent to publish identifying personal information: current practices and identifying potential issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Akiko; Dowa, Yuri; Murakami, Hiromi; Kosugi, Shinji

    2013-11-25

    In studies publishing identifying personal information, obtaining consent is regarded as necessary, as it is impossible to ensure complete anonymity. However, current journal practices around specific points to consider when obtaining consent, the contents of consent forms and how consent forms are managed have not yet been fully examined. This study was conducted to identify potential issues surrounding consent to publish identifying personal information. Content analysis was carried out on instructions for authors and consent forms developed by academic journals in four fields (as classified by Journal Citation Reports): medicine general and internal, genetics and heredity, pediatrics, and psychiatry. An online questionnaire survey of editors working for journals that require the submission of consent forms was also conducted. Instructions for authors were reviewed for 491 academic journals (132 for medicine general and internal, 147 for genetics and heredity, 100 for pediatrics, and 112 for psychiatry). Approximately 40% (203: 74 for medicine general and internal, 31 for genetics and heredity, 58 for pediatrics, and 40 for psychiatry) stated that subject consent was necessary. The submission of consent forms was required by 30% (154) of the journals studied, and 10% (50) provided their own consent forms for authors to use. Two journals mentioned that the possible effects of publication on subjects should be considered. Many journal consent forms mentioned the difficulties in ensuring complete anonymity of subjects, but few addressed the study objective, the subjects' right to refuse consent and the withdrawal of consent. The main reason for requiring the submission of consent forms was to confirm that consent had been obtained. Approximately 40% of journals required subject consent to be obtained. However, differences were observed depending on the fields. Specific considerations were not always documented. There is a need to address issues around the study

  4. Obtaining subjects’ consent to publish identifying personal information: current practices and identifying potential issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background In studies publishing identifying personal information, obtaining consent is regarded as necessary, as it is impossible to ensure complete anonymity. However, current journal practices around specific points to consider when obtaining consent, the contents of consent forms and how consent forms are managed have not yet been fully examined. This study was conducted to identify potential issues surrounding consent to publish identifying personal information. Methods Content analysis was carried out on instructions for authors and consent forms developed by academic journals in four fields (as classified by Journal Citation Reports): medicine general and internal, genetics and heredity, pediatrics, and psychiatry. An online questionnaire survey of editors working for journals that require the submission of consent forms was also conducted. Results Instructions for authors were reviewed for 491 academic journals (132 for medicine general and internal, 147 for genetics and heredity, 100 for pediatrics, and 112 for psychiatry). Approximately 40% (203: 74 for medicine general and internal, 31 for genetics and heredity, 58 for pediatrics, and 40 for psychiatry) stated that subject consent was necessary. The submission of consent forms was required by 30% (154) of the journals studied, and 10% (50) provided their own consent forms for authors to use. Two journals mentioned that the possible effects of publication on subjects should be considered. Many journal consent forms mentioned the difficulties in ensuring complete anonymity of subjects, but few addressed the study objective, the subjects’ right to refuse consent and the withdrawal of consent. The main reason for requiring the submission of consent forms was to confirm that consent had been obtained. Conclusion Approximately 40% of journals required subject consent to be obtained. However, differences were observed depending on the fields. Specific considerations were not always documented. There is a need

  5. Improving applicant selection: identifying qualities of the unsuccessful otolaryngology resident.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badran, Karam W; Kelley, Kanwar; Conderman, Christian; Mahboubi, Hossein; Armstrong, William B; Bhandarkar, Naveen D

    2015-04-01

    To identify the prevalence and management of problematic residents. Additionally, we hope to identify the factors associated with successful remediation of unsuccessful otolaryngology residents. Self-reported Internet and paper-based survey. An anonymous survey was distributed to 152 current and former program directors (PDs) in 2012. The factors associated with unsuccessful otolaryngology residents and those associated with the successful remediation of problematic residents were investigated. An unsuccessful resident is defined as one who quit or was removed from the program for any reason, or one whose actions resulted in criminal action or citation against their medical license after graduation from residency. Remediation is defined as an individualized program implemented to correct documented weaknesses. The overall response rate was 26% (40 PDs). Seventy-three unsuccessful or problematic residents were identified. Sixty-six problematic or unsuccessful residents were identified during residency, with 58 of 66 (88%) undergoing remediation. Thirty-one (47%) residents did not graduate. The most commonly identified factors of an unsuccessful resident were: change in specialty (21.5%), interpersonal and communication skills with health professionals (13.9%), and clinical judgment (10.1%). Characteristics of those residents who underwent successful remediation include: poor performance on in-training examination (17%, P otolaryngology PDs in this sample identified at least one unsuccessful resident. Improved methods of applicant screening may assist in optimizing otolaryngology resident selection. © 2014 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.

  6. Improving the gaussian effective potential: quantum mechanics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eboli, O.J.P.; Thomaz, M.T.; Lemos, N.A.

    1990-08-01

    In order to gain intuition for variational problems in field theory, we analyze variationally the quantum-mechanical anharmonic oscillator [(V(x)sup(k) - sub(2) x sup(2) + sup(λ) - sub(4) λ sup(4)]. Special attention is paid to improvements to the Gaussian effective potential. (author)

  7. Identify: Improving industrial energy efficiency and mitigating global climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lazarus, M.; Hill, D.; Cornland, D.W.; Heaps, C.; Hippel, D. von; Williams, R.

    1997-07-01

    The use of energy in the industrial sectors of nations with both industrialized and developing economies will continue to be, a major source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, particularly carbon dioxide. The patterns of industrial-sector energy use--energy provided primarily by the combustion of fossil fuels-have shifted both within the between countries in recent decades. Projections of future energy use and carbon-dioxide (CO{sub 2}) emissions suggest continued shifts in these patterns, as industrial production in developed countries stabilizes and declines, while industrial output in the developing world continues to expand. This expansion of industrial-sector activity and CO{sub 2} emissions in developing countries presents both a challenge and an opportunity. To seize this opportunity and contribute to international efforts to mitigate global climate change, the United National Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) recently initiated a two-phase effort to help improve the efficiency of energy-intensive industries (iron and steel, chemicals, refining, paper and pulp, and cement) in developing countries. As part of the Phase I, the authors reviewed industrial sector scenarios and to initiated development of a software-based toolkit for identifying and assessing GHG mitigating technologies. This toolkit, called IDENTIFY, is comprised of a technology inventory and a companion economic analysis tool. In addition, UNIDO commissioned institutions in India, South Africa, and Argentina to review energy use patterns and savings opportunities in selected industries across nine developing countries, and contribute to the development of the IDENTIFY toolkit. UNIDO is now preparing to launch Phase 2, which will focus on full development and dissemination of the IDENTIFY toolkit through seminars and case studies around the world. This paper describes Phase 1 of the UNIDO project.

  8. Identify: Improving industrial energy efficiency and mitigating global climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lazarus, M.; Hill, D.; Cornland, D.W.; Heaps, C.; Hippel, D. von; Williams, R.

    1997-01-01

    The use of energy in the industrial sectors of nations with both industrialized and developing economies will continue to be, a major source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, particularly carbon dioxide. The patterns of industrial-sector energy use--energy provided primarily by the combustion of fossil fuels-have shifted both within the between countries in recent decades. Projections of future energy use and carbon-dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions suggest continued shifts in these patterns, as industrial production in developed countries stabilizes and declines, while industrial output in the developing world continues to expand. This expansion of industrial-sector activity and CO 2 emissions in developing countries presents both a challenge and an opportunity. To seize this opportunity and contribute to international efforts to mitigate global climate change, the United National Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) recently initiated a two-phase effort to help improve the efficiency of energy-intensive industries (iron and steel, chemicals, refining, paper and pulp, and cement) in developing countries. As part of the Phase I, the authors reviewed industrial sector scenarios and to initiated development of a software-based toolkit for identifying and assessing GHG mitigating technologies. This toolkit, called IDENTIFY, is comprised of a technology inventory and a companion economic analysis tool. In addition, UNIDO commissioned institutions in India, South Africa, and Argentina to review energy use patterns and savings opportunities in selected industries across nine developing countries, and contribute to the development of the IDENTIFY toolkit. UNIDO is now preparing to launch Phase 2, which will focus on full development and dissemination of the IDENTIFY toolkit through seminars and case studies around the world. This paper describes Phase 1 of the UNIDO project

  9. A tool for identifying potential Eucalyptus nitens seed orchard sites ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Shy seed production in orchards of Eucalyptus nitens is a major barrier to the deployment of genetic gain in South African plantations. A machine learning method was used to identify optimal sites for the establishment of E. nitens seed orchards within the plantation forestry landscape of the summer rainfall region of South ...

  10. Improved prediction of breast cancer outcome by identifying heterogeneous biomarkers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Jonghwan; Park, Sanghyun; Yoon, Youngmi; Ahn, Jaegyoon

    2017-11-15

    Identification of genes that can be used to predict prognosis in patients with cancer is important in that it can lead to improved therapy, and can also promote our understanding of tumor progression on the molecular level. One of the common but fundamental problems that render identification of prognostic genes and prediction of cancer outcomes difficult is the heterogeneity of patient samples. To reduce the effect of sample heterogeneity, we clustered data samples using K-means algorithm and applied modified PageRank to functional interaction (FI) networks weighted using gene expression values of samples in each cluster. Hub genes among resulting prioritized genes were selected as biomarkers to predict the prognosis of samples. This process outperformed traditional feature selection methods as well as several network-based prognostic gene selection methods when applied to Random Forest. We were able to find many cluster-specific prognostic genes for each dataset. Functional study showed that distinct biological processes were enriched in each cluster, which seems to reflect different aspect of tumor progression or oncogenesis among distinct patient groups. Taken together, these results provide support for the hypothesis that our approach can effectively identify heterogeneous prognostic genes, and these are complementary to each other, improving prediction accuracy. https://github.com/mathcom/CPR. jgahn@inu.ac.kr. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author (2017). Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com

  11. Identifying Potential Weapon Systems That Can Be Divested

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-04-08

    sustainment cost mitigation strategies include reduce supply chain by maximizing multi-role equipment, reduce divestiture obstacles/friction points...question. Extensive search of the internet government websites were used to find government information and open access articles related to the research...they did not use it, and if they use anything thing else to identify these low priority systems. The intent of the survey was not to get into

  12. Post discharge issues identified by a call-back program: identifying improvement opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ojeda, Patricia I; Kara, Areeba

    2017-12-01

    The period following discharge from the hospital is one of heightened vulnerability. Discharge instructions serve as a guide during this transition. Yet, clinicians receive little feedback on the quality of this document that ties into the patients' experience. We reviewed the issues voiced by discharged patients via a call-back program and compared them to the discharge instructions they had received. At our institution, patients receive an automated call forty-eight hours following discharge inquiring about progress. If indicated by the response to the call, they are directed to a nurse who assists with problem solving. We reviewed the nursing documentation of these encounters for a period of nine months. The issues voiced were grouped into five categories: communication, medications, durable medical equipment/therapies, follow up and new or ongoing symptoms. The discharge instructions given to each patient were reviewed. We retrieved data on the number of discharges from each specialty from the hospital over the same period. A total of 592 patients voiced 685 issues. The numbers of patients discharged from medical or surgical services identified as having issues via the call-back line paralleled the proportions discharged from medical and surgical services from the hospital during the same period. Nearly a quarter of the issues discussed had been addressed in the discharge instructions. The most common category of issues was related to communication deficits including missing or incomplete information which made it difficult for the patient to enact or understand the plan of care. Medication prescription related issues were the next most common. Resource barriers and questions surrounding medications were often unaddressed. Post discharge issues affect patients discharged from all services equally. Data from call back programs may provide actionable targets for improvement, identify the inpatient team's 'blind spots' and be used to provide feedback to clinicians.

  13. Persistent Identifiers for Improved Accessibility for Linked Data Querying

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepherd, A.; Chandler, C. L.; Arko, R. A.; Fils, D.; Jones, M. B.; Krisnadhi, A.; Mecum, B.

    2016-12-01

    The adoption of linked open data principles within the geosciences has increased the amount of accessible information available on the Web. However, this data is difficult to consume for those who are unfamiliar with Semantic Web technologies such as Web Ontology Language (OWL), Resource Description Framework (RDF) and SPARQL - the RDF query language. Consumers would need to understand the structure of the data and how to efficiently query it. Furthermore, understanding how to query doesn't solve problems of poor precision and recall in search results. For consumers unfamiliar with the data, full-text searches are most accessible, but not ideal as they arrest the advantages of data disambiguation and co-reference resolution efforts. Conversely, URI searches across linked data can deliver improved search results, but knowledge of these exact URIs may remain difficult to obtain. The increased adoption of Persistent Identifiers (PIDs) can lead to improved linked data querying by a wide variety of consumers. Because PIDs resolve to a single entity, they are an excellent data point for disambiguating content. At the same time, PIDs are more accessible and prominent than a single data provider's linked data URI. When present in linked open datasets, PIDs provide balance between the technical and social hurdles of linked data querying as evidenced by the NSF EarthCube GeoLink project. The GeoLink project, funded by NSF's EarthCube initiative, have brought together data repositories include content from field expeditions, laboratory analyses, journal publications, conference presentations, theses/reports, and funding awards that span scientific studies from marine geology to marine ecosystems and biogeochemistry to paleoclimatology.

  14. Identifying Initial Condition in Degenerate Parabolic Equation with Singular Potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Atifi

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available A hybrid algorithm and regularization method are proposed, for the first time, to solve the one-dimensional degenerate inverse heat conduction problem to estimate the initial temperature distribution from point measurements. The evolution of the heat is given by a degenerate parabolic equation with singular potential. This problem can be formulated in a least-squares framework, an iterative procedure which minimizes the difference between the given measurements and the value at sensor locations of a reconstructed field. The mathematical model leads to a nonconvex minimization problem. To solve it, we prove the existence of at least one solution of problem and we propose two approaches: the first is based on a Tikhonov regularization, while the second approach is based on a hybrid genetic algorithm (married genetic with descent method type gradient. Some numerical experiments are given.

  15. Potential of isotope analysis (C, Cl) to identify dechlorination mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cretnik, Stefan; Thoreson, Kristen; Bernstein, Anat; Ebert, Karin; Buchner, Daniel; Laskov, Christine; Haderlein, Stefan; Shouakar-Stash, Orfan; Kliegman, Sarah; McNeill, Kristopher; Elsner, Martin

    2013-04-01

    Chloroethenes are commonly used in industrial applications, and detected as carcinogenic contaminants in the environment. Their dehalogenation is of environmental importance in remediation processes. However, a detailed understanding frequently accounted problem is the accumulation of toxic degradation products such as cis-dichloroethylene (cis-DCE) at contaminated sites. Several studies have addressed the reductive dehalogenation reactions using biotic and abiotic model systems, but a crucial question in this context has remained open: Do environmental transformations occur by the same mechanism as in their corresponding in vitro model systems? The presented study shows the potential to close this research gap using the latest developments in compound specific chlorine isotope analysis, which make it possible to routinely measure chlorine isotope fractionation of chloroethenes in environmental samples and complex reaction mixtures.1,2 In particular, such chlorine isotope analysis enables the measurement of isotope fractionation for two elements (i.e., C and Cl) in chloroethenes. When isotope values of both elements are plotted against each other, different slopes reflect different underlying mechanisms and are remarkably insensitive towards masking. Our results suggest that different microbial strains (G. lovleyi strain SZ, D. hafniense Y51) and the isolated cofactor cobalamin employ similar mechanisms of reductive dechlorination of TCE. In contrast, evidence for a different mechanism was obtained with cobaloxime cautioning its use as a model for biodegradation. The study shows the potential of the dual isotope approach as a tool to directly compare transformation mechanisms of environmental scenarios, biotic transformations, and their putative chemical lab scale systems. Furthermore, it serves as an essential reference when using the dual isotope approach to assess the fate of chlorinated compounds in the environment.

  16. MELATONIN: POTENTIAL UTILITY FOR IMPROVING PUBLIC HEALTH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russel J REITER; Fatih GULTEKIN; Luis J FLORES; Ma Pilar TERRON; Dun-Xian TAN

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available This review summarizes the beneficial actions of melatonin in various experimental conditions/diseases and identifies where the use of melatonin may be helpful in improving public health. The nightly use of melatonin supplements by humans often improves their sleep and helps correct the circadian dyssynchronization associated with “jet lag”. Additionally, melatonin has been found effective in curtailing the growth of a variety of experimental cancers. Mechanistically, this is achieved by melatonin’s ability to limit fatty acid uptake, especially linoleic acid, by tumor cells. Fatty acids are growth factors for many tumors. Additionally, melatonin inhibits the elevated telomerase activity of tumor cells thus making them more fragile and vulnerable to chemotherapies. Melatonin also may inhibit angiogenesis in tumors by suppressing endothelin-1 production and the indole interferes with the stimulatory action of steroids on hormone-responsive tumors. As an ubiquitously-acting antioxidant, melatonin reduces cardiac damage during ischemia/reperfusion (I/R injury (heart attack and during I/R to the brain (stroke. Melatonin also limits the toxicity of amyloid  peptide and of neurofibrillary tangles, two of the cardinal signs of Alzheimer’s disease. Collectively, these data suggest supplementation with melatonin, whose endogenous levels decrease with age, may improve the quality of life in the aged and, as a consequence, be beneficial for public health generally. [TAF Prev Med Bull 2006; 5(2.000: 131-158

  17. Nurse moral distress: A survey identifying predictors and potential interventions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rathert, Cheryl; May, Douglas R; Chung, Hye Sook

    2016-01-01

    Ethical dilemmas and conflicts are inherent in today's health care organizations and may lead to moral distress, which is often associated with physical and psychological symptoms. Although the existence of moral distress has been observed by scholars for decades, most of the research has been descriptive and has examined what types of health care conflicts lead to distress. This study tested a comprehensive model, underpinned by Social Cognitive Theory, that examined work environment and intrapersonal variables that may influence moral distress. We surveyed nursing staff employed in a U.S. acute care hospital (response rate=45%; n=290). More than half of the respondents reported they experience ethical dilemmas and conflicts from several times a month to daily, and nearly half reported they experience moral distress at least several times a month. Structural equation modeling analysis simultaneously examined the effects of five independent variables on moral distress and moral voice: (a) frequency of ethical dilemmas and conflicts; (b) moral efficacy; (c) ethics communication; (d) ethical environment; and (e) organizational ethics support. Results revealed significant independent effects of the frequency of ethics issues and organizational ethics support on moral distress. Bootstrapping analysis indicated that voice fully mediated the relationship between moral efficacy and moral distress, and partially mediated the relationship between organizational ethics support and distress. Supplemental analysis revealed that organizational ethics support moderated the moral efficacy-voice-moral distress relationship such that when organizational support was low, moral efficacy was negatively related to moral distress via voice. Although it may be impossible to eliminate all ethical dilemmas and conflicts, leaders and organizations may wish to help improve nurses' moral efficacy, which appears to give rise to voice, and reduced moral distress. Increasing organizational

  18. An improved model for identifying influential bloggers on the web ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The benefits of achieving competitive advantages in a blog community by identify influential blogger have created several research gaps and the popularity of these services has make the problem of identifying the most influential bloggers noteworthy, since its solution can lead to major benefits for the users of this services ...

  19. Identifying continuous quality improvement publications: what makes an improvement intervention ‘CQI’?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hempel, Susanne; Lim, Yee-Wei; Danz, Marjorie S; Foy, Robbie; Suttorp, Marika J; Shekelle, Paul G; Rubenstein, Lisa V

    2011-01-01

    Background The term continuous quality improvement (CQI) is often used to refer to a method for improving care, but no consensus statement exists on the definition of CQI. Evidence reviews are critical for advancing science, and depend on reliable definitions for article selection. Methods As a preliminary step towards improving CQI evidence reviews, this study aimed to use expert panel methods to identify key CQI definitional features and develop and test a screening instrument for reliably identifying articles with the key features. We used a previously published method to identify 106 articles meeting the general definition of a quality improvement intervention (QII) from 9427 electronically identified articles from PubMed. Two raters then applied a six-item CQI screen to the 106 articles. Results Per cent agreement ranged from 55.7% to 75.5% for the six items, and reviewer-adjusted intra-class correlation ranged from 0.43 to 0.62. ‘Feedback of systematically collected data’ was the most common feature (64%), followed by being at least ‘somewhat’ adapted to local conditions (61%), feedback at meetings involving participant leaders (46%), using an iterative development process (40%), being at least ‘somewhat’ data driven (34%), and using a recognised change method (28%). All six features were present in 14.2% of QII articles. Conclusions We conclude that CQI features can be extracted from QII articles with reasonable reliability, but only a small proportion of QII articles include all features. Further consensus development is needed to support meaningful use of the term CQI for scientific communication. PMID:21727199

  20. Identifying continuous quality improvement publications: what makes an improvement intervention 'CQI'?

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Sean M; Hempel, Susanne; Lim, Yee-Wei; Danz, Marjorie S; Foy, Robbie; Suttorp, Marika J; Shekelle, Paul G; Rubenstein, Lisa V

    2011-12-01

    The term continuous quality improvement (CQI) is often used to refer to a method for improving care, but no consensus statement exists on the definition of CQI. Evidence reviews are critical for advancing science, and depend on reliable definitions for article selection. As a preliminary step towards improving CQI evidence reviews, this study aimed to use expert panel methods to identify key CQI definitional features and develop and test a screening instrument for reliably identifying articles with the key features. We used a previously published method to identify 106 articles meeting the general definition of a quality improvement intervention (QII) from 9427 electronically identified articles from PubMed. Two raters then applied a six-item CQI screen to the 106 articles. Per cent agreement ranged from 55.7% to 75.5% for the six items, and reviewer-adjusted intra-class correlation ranged from 0.43 to 0.62. 'Feedback of systematically collected data' was the most common feature (64%), followed by being at least 'somewhat' adapted to local conditions (61%), feedback at meetings involving participant leaders (46%), using an iterative development process (40%), being at least 'somewhat' data driven (34%), and using a recognised change method (28%). All six features were present in 14.2% of QII articles. We conclude that CQI features can be extracted from QII articles with reasonable reliability, but only a small proportion of QII articles include all features. Further consensus development is needed to support meaningful use of the term CQI for scientific communication.

  1. Improvements in the Protein Identifier Cross-Reference service.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wein, Samuel P; Côté, Richard G; Dumousseau, Marine; Reisinger, Florian; Hermjakob, Henning; Vizcaíno, Juan A

    2012-07-01

    The Protein Identifier Cross-Reference (PICR) service is a tool that allows users to map protein identifiers, protein sequences and gene identifiers across over 100 different source databases. PICR takes input through an interactive website as well as Representational State Transfer (REST) and Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) services. It returns the results as HTML pages, XLS and CSV files. It has been in production since 2007 and has been recently enhanced to add new functionality and increase the number of databases it covers. Protein subsequences can be Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST) against the UniProt Knowledgebase (UniProtKB) to provide an entry point to the standard PICR mapping algorithm. In addition, gene identifiers from UniProtKB and Ensembl can now be submitted as input or mapped to as output from PICR. We have also implemented a 'best-guess' mapping algorithm for UniProt. In this article, we describe the usefulness of PICR, how these changes have been implemented, and the corresponding additions to the web services. Finally, we explain that the number of source databases covered by PICR has increased from the initial 73 to the current 102. New resources include several new species-specific Ensembl databases as well as the Ensembl Genome ones. PICR can be accessed at http://www.ebi.ac.uk/Tools/picr/.

  2. An automated technique to identify potential inappropriate traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) prescriptions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Hsuan-Chia; Iqbal, Usman; Nguyen, Phung Anh; Lin, Shen-Hsien; Huang, Chih-Wei; Jian, Wen-Shan; Li, Yu-Chuan

    2016-04-01

    Medication errors such as potential inappropriate prescriptions would induce serious adverse drug events to patients. Information technology has the ability to prevent medication errors; however, the pharmacology of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is not as clear as in western medicine. The aim of this study was to apply the appropriateness of prescription (AOP) model to identify potential inappropriate TCM prescriptions. We used the association rule of mining techniques to analyze 14.5 million prescriptions from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database. The disease and TCM (DTCM) and traditional Chinese medicine-traditional Chinese medicine (TCMM) associations are computed by their co-occurrence, and the associations' strength was measured as Q-values, which often referred to as interestingness or life values. By considering the number of Q-values, the AOP model was applied to identify the inappropriate prescriptions. Afterwards, three traditional Chinese physicians evaluated 1920 prescriptions and validated the detected outcomes from the AOP model. Out of 1920 prescriptions, 97.1% of positive predictive value and 19.5% of negative predictive value were shown by the system as compared with those by experts. The sensitivity analysis indicated that the negative predictive value could improve up to 27.5% when the model's threshold changed to 0.4. We successfully applied the AOP model to automatically identify potential inappropriate TCM prescriptions. This model could be a potential TCM clinical decision support system in order to improve drug safety and quality of care. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  3. Stakeholder Engagement to Identify Priorities for Improving the Quality and Value of Critical Care.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry T Stelfox

    Full Text Available Large amounts of scientific evidence are generated, but not implemented into patient care (the 'knowledge-to-care' gap. We identified and prioritized knowledge-to-care gaps in critical care as opportunities to improve the quality and value of healthcare.We used a multi-method community-based participatory research approach to engage a Network of all adult (n = 14 and pediatric (n = 2 medical-surgical intensive care units (ICUs in a fully integrated geographically defined healthcare system serving 4 million residents. Participants included Network oversight committee members (n = 38 and frontline providers (n = 1,790. Network committee members used a modified RAND/University of California Appropriateness Methodology, to serially propose, rate (validated 9 point scale and revise potential knowledge-to-care gaps as priorities for improvement. The priorities were sent to frontline providers for evaluation. Results were relayed back to all frontline providers for feedback.Initially, 68 knowledge-to-care gaps were proposed, rated and revised by the committee (n = 32 participants over 3 rounds of review and resulted in 13 proposed priorities for improvement. Then, 1,103 providers (62% response rate evaluated the priorities, and rated 9 as 'necessary' (median score 7-9. Several factors were associated with rating priorities as necessary in multivariable logistic regression, related to the provider (experience, teaching status of ICU and topic (strength of supporting evidence, potential to benefit the patient, potential to improve patient/family experience, potential to decrease costs.A community-based participatory research approach engaged a diverse group of stakeholders to identify 9 priorities for improving the quality and value of critical care. The approach was time and cost efficient and could serve as a model to prioritize areas for research quality improvement across other settings.

  4. Stakeholder Engagement to Identify Priorities for Improving the Quality and Value of Critical Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stelfox, Henry T; Niven, Daniel J; Clement, Fiona M; Bagshaw, Sean M; Cook, Deborah J; McKenzie, Emily; Potestio, Melissa L; Doig, Christopher J; O'Neill, Barbara; Zygun, David

    2015-01-01

    Large amounts of scientific evidence are generated, but not implemented into patient care (the 'knowledge-to-care' gap). We identified and prioritized knowledge-to-care gaps in critical care as opportunities to improve the quality and value of healthcare. We used a multi-method community-based participatory research approach to engage a Network of all adult (n = 14) and pediatric (n = 2) medical-surgical intensive care units (ICUs) in a fully integrated geographically defined healthcare system serving 4 million residents. Participants included Network oversight committee members (n = 38) and frontline providers (n = 1,790). Network committee members used a modified RAND/University of California Appropriateness Methodology, to serially propose, rate (validated 9 point scale) and revise potential knowledge-to-care gaps as priorities for improvement. The priorities were sent to frontline providers for evaluation. Results were relayed back to all frontline providers for feedback. Initially, 68 knowledge-to-care gaps were proposed, rated and revised by the committee (n = 32 participants) over 3 rounds of review and resulted in 13 proposed priorities for improvement. Then, 1,103 providers (62% response rate) evaluated the priorities, and rated 9 as 'necessary' (median score 7-9). Several factors were associated with rating priorities as necessary in multivariable logistic regression, related to the provider (experience, teaching status of ICU) and topic (strength of supporting evidence, potential to benefit the patient, potential to improve patient/family experience, potential to decrease costs). A community-based participatory research approach engaged a diverse group of stakeholders to identify 9 priorities for improving the quality and value of critical care. The approach was time and cost efficient and could serve as a model to prioritize areas for research quality improvement across other settings.

  5. Evidentiary requirements to identify potentially acceptable sites (PAS) in crystalline rock

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Comella, P.A.; Smith, B.H.

    1985-01-01

    This report contains information on the evidentiary requirements to identify potentially acceptable sites in crystalline rock for waste disposal. Topics addressed include: chronology, key regulatory assumptions, statutory framework for identifying potentially acceptable sites, application of 10 disqualifiers, consideration of favorable and potentially adverse conditions, a composite favorability analysis, and a proposed outline for PAS identification decision document

  6. Energy efficiency improvement potentials for the cement industry in Ethiopia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tesema, Gudise; Worrell, Ernst

    2015-01-01

    The cement sector is one of the fast growing economic sectors in Ethiopia. In 2010, it consumed 7 PJ of primary energy. We evaluate the potential for energy savings and CO_2 emission reductions. We start by benchmarking the energy performance of 8 operating plants in 2010, and 12 plants under construction. The benchmarking shows that the energy intensity of local cement facilities is high, when compared to the international best practice, indicating a significant potential for energy efficiency improvement. The average electricity intensity and fuel intensity of the operating plants is 34% and 36% higher. For plants under construction, electricity use is 36% and fuel use 27% higher. We identified 26 energy efficiency measures. By constructing energy conservation supply curves, the energy-efficiency improvement potential is assessed. For the 8 operating plants in 2010, the cost-effective energy savings equal 11 GWh electricity and 1.2 PJ fuel, resulting in 0.1 Mt CO_2 emissions reduction. For the 20 cement plants expected to be in operation by 2020, the cost-effective energy saving potentials is 159 GWh for electricity and 7.2 PJ for fuel, reducing CO_2 emissions by about 0.6 Mt. We discuss key barriers and recommendations to realize energy savings. - Highlights: • The cement sector in Ethiopia is growing rapidly, using mainly imported fuels. • Benchmarking demonstrates a significant potential for energy efficiency improvement. • A large part of the energy efficiency potential can be achieved cost-effectively. • Ethiopia should ban the construction of obsolete vertical shaft kilns.

  7. Identifying potentially cost effective chronic care programs for people with COPD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L M G Steuten

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available L M G Steuten1, K M M Lemmens2, A P Nieboer2, H JM Vrijhoef31Maastricht University Medical Centre, School for Care and Public Health Research, Department of Health, Organisation, Policy and Economics, Maastricht, The Netherlands; 2Erasmus University Medical Centre, Institute of Health Policy and Management, Rotterdam, The Netherlands; 3Maastricht University Medical Centre, School for Care and Public Health Research, Department of Integrated Care, Maastricht, The NetherlandsObjective: To review published evidence regarding the cost effectiveness of multi-component COPD programs and to illustrate how potentially cost effective programs can be identified.Methods: Systematic search of Medline and Cochrane databases for evaluations of multi-component disease management or chronic care programs for adults with COPD, describing process, intermediate, and end results of care. Data were independently extracted by two reviewers and descriptively summarized.Results: Twenty articles describing 17 unique COPD programs were included. There is little evidence for significant improvements in process and intermediate outcomes, except for increased provision of patient self-management education and improved disease-specific knowledge. Overall, the COPD programs generate end results equivalent to usual care, but programs containing ≥3 components show lower relative risks for hospitalization. There is limited scope for programs to break-even or save money.Conclusion: Identifying cost effective multi-component COPD programs remains a challenge due to scarce methodologically sound studies that demonstrate significant improvements on process, intermediate and end results of care. Estimations of potential cost effectiveness of specific programs illustrated in this paper can, in the absence of ‘perfect data’, support timely decision-making regarding these programs. Nevertheless, well-designed health economic studies are needed to decrease the current decision

  8. 25 CFR 170.501 - What happens when the review process identifies areas for improvement?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... identifies areas for improvement? When the review process identifies areas for improvement: (a) The regional... 25 Indians 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false What happens when the review process identifies areas for improvement? 170.501 Section 170.501 Indians BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR LAND AND...

  9. Omen: identifying potential spear-phishing targets before the email is sent.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wendt, Jeremy Daniel.

    2013-07-01

    We present the results of a two year project focused on a common social engineering attack method called "spear phishing". In a spear phishing attack, the user receives an email with information specifically focused on the user. This email contains either a malware-laced attachment or a link to download the malware that has been disguised as a useful program. Spear phishing attacks have been one of the most effective avenues for attackers to gain initial entry into a target network. This project focused on a proactive approach to spear phishing. To create an effective, user-specific spear phishing email, the attacker must research the intended recipient. We believe that much of the information used by the attacker is provided by the target organization's own external website. Thus when researching potential targets, the attacker leaves signs of his research in the webserver's logs. We created tools and visualizations to improve cybersecurity analysts' abilities to quickly understand a visitor's visit patterns and interests. Given these suspicious visitors and log-parsing tools, analysts can more quickly identify truly suspicious visitors, search for potential spear-phishing targeted users, and improve security around those users before the spear phishing email is sent.

  10. Improved effective potential by nonlinear canonical transformations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ritschel, U.

    1990-01-01

    We generalize the familiar gaussian-effective-potential formalism to a class of non-gaussian trial states. With the help of exact nonlinear canonical transformations, expectation values can be calculated analytically and in closed form. A detailed description of our method, particularly for quadratic and cubic transformations, and of the related renormalization procedure is given. Applications to φ 4 -models in various dimensionalities are treated. We find the expected critical behaviour in two space-time dimensions. In three and four dimensions we observe instabilities which go back the incompleteness of the gaussian-based renormalization. In the appendices it is shown that the quadratic transformation leads to a coherent state in a certain limiting case, and the generalization to systems at finite temperature is performed. (orig.)

  11. Resident Workflow and Psychiatric Emergency Consultation: Identifying Factors for Quality Improvement in a Training Environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blair, Thomas; Wiener, Zev; Seroussi, Ariel; Tang, Lingqi; O'Hora, Jennifer; Cheung, Erick

    2017-06-01

    Quality improvement to optimize workflow has the potential to mitigate resident burnout and enhance patient care. This study applied mixed methods to identify factors that enhance or impede workflow for residents performing emergency psychiatric consultations. The study population consisted of all psychiatry program residents (55 eligible, 42 participating) at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, University of California, Los Angeles. The authors developed a survey through iterative piloting, surveyed all residents, and then conducted a focus group. The survey included elements hypothesized to enhance or impede workflow, and measures pertaining to self-rated efficiency and stress. Distributional and bivariate analyses were performed. Survey findings were clarified in focus group discussion. This study identified several factors subjectively associated with enhanced or impeded workflow, including difficulty with documentation, the value of personal organization systems, and struggles to communicate with patients' families. Implications for resident education are discussed.

  12. Using time-driven activity-based costing to identify value improvement opportunities in healthcare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, Robert S; Witkowski, Mary; Abbott, Megan; Guzman, Alexis Barboza; Higgins, Laurence D; Meara, John G; Padden, Erin; Shah, Apurva S; Waters, Peter; Weidemeier, Marco; Wertheimer, Sam; Feeley, Thomas W

    2014-01-01

    As healthcare providers cope with pricing pressures and increased accountability for performance, they should be rededicating themselves to improving the value they deliver to their patients: better outcomes and lower costs. Time-driven activity-based costing offers the potential for clinicians to redesign their care processes toward that end. This costing approach, however, is new to healthcare and has not yet been systematically implemented and evaluated. This article describes early time-driven activity-based costing work at several leading healthcare organizations in the United States and Europe. It identifies the opportunities they found to improve value for patients and demonstrates how this costing method can serve as the foundation for new bundled payment reimbursement approaches.

  13. Critical differences between elective and emergency surgery: identifying domains for quality improvement in emergency general surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Columbus, Alexandra B; Morris, Megan A; Lilley, Elizabeth J; Harlow, Alyssa F; Haider, Adil H; Salim, Ali; Havens, Joaquim M

    2018-04-01

    The objective of our study was to characterize providers' impressions of factors contributing to disproportionate rates of morbidity and mortality in emergency general surgery to identify targets for care quality improvement. Emergency general surgery is characterized by a high-cost burden and disproportionate morbidity and mortality. Factors contributing to these observed disparities are not comprehensively understood and targets for quality improvement have not been formally developed. Using a grounded theory approach, emergency general surgery providers were recruited through purposive-criterion-based sampling to participate in semi-structured interviews and focus groups. Participants were asked to identify contributors to emergency general surgery outcomes, to define effective care for EGS patients, and to describe operating room team structure. Interviews were performed to thematic saturation. Transcripts were iteratively coded and analyzed within and across cases to identify emergent themes. Member checking was performed to establish credibility of the findings. A total of 40 participants from 5 academic hospitals participated in either individual interviews (n = 25 [9 anesthesia, 12 surgery, 4 nursing]) or focus groups (n = 2 [15 nursing]). Emergency general surgery was characterized by an exceptionally high level of variability, which can be subcategorized as patient-variability (acute physiology and comorbidities) and system-variability (operating room resources and workforce). Multidisciplinary communication is identified as a modifier to variability in emergency general surgery; however, nursing is often left out of early communication exchanges. Critical variability in emergency general surgery may impact outcomes. Patient-variability and system-variability, with focus on multidisciplinary communication, represent potential domains for quality improvement in this field. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Assessing urban potential flooding risk and identifying effective risk-reduction measures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherqui, Frédéric; Belmeziti, Ali; Granger, Damien; Sourdril, Antoine; Le Gauffre, Pascal

    2015-05-01

    Flood protection is one of the traditional functions of any drainage system, and it remains a major issue in many cities because of economic and health impact. Heavy rain flooding has been well studied and existing simulation software can be used to predict and improve level of protection. However, simulating minor flooding remains highly complex, due to the numerous possible causes related to operational deficiencies or negligent behaviour. According to the literature, causes of blockages vary widely from one case to another: it is impossible to provide utility managers with effective recommendations on how to improve the level of protection. It is therefore vital to analyse each context in order to define an appropriate strategy. Here we propose a method to represent and assess the flooding risk, using GIS and data gathered during operation and maintenance. Our method also identifies potential management responses. The approach proposed aims to provide decision makers with clear and comprehensible information. Our method has been successfully applied to the Urban Community of Bordeaux (France) on 4895 interventions related to flooding recorded during the 2009-2011 period. Results have shown the relative importance of different issues, such as human behaviour (grease, etc.) or operational deficiencies (roots, etc.), and lead to identify corrective and proactive. This study also confirms that blockages are not always directly due to the network itself and its deterioration. Many causes depend on environmental and operating conditions on the network and often require collaboration between municipal departments in charge of roads, green spaces, etc. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Gut Bacteria Missing in Severe Acute Malnutrition, Can We Identify Potential Probiotics by Culturomics?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maryam Tidjani Alou

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Severe acute malnutrition is the world-leading cause of children under-five's death. Recent metagenomics studies have established a link between gut microbiota and severe acute malnutrition, describing an immaturity with a striking depletion in oxygen-sensitive prokaryotes. Amoxicillin and therapeutic diet cure most of the children with severe acute malnutrition but an irreversible disruption of the gut microbiota is suspected in the refractory and most severe cases. In these cases, therapeutic diet may be unable to reverse the microbiota alteration leading to persistent impaired development or death. In addition, as enteric sepsis is a major cause of death in this context, identification of missing gut microbes to be tested as probiotics (live bacteria that confer a benefit to the host to restore rapidly the healthy gut microbiota and prevent the gut pathogenic invasion is of foremost importance. In this study, stool samples of malnourished patients with kwashiorkor and healthy children were collected from Niger and Senegal and analyzed by culturomics and metagenomics. We found a globally decreased diversity, a decrease in the hitherto unknown diversity (new species isolation, a depletion in oxygen-sensitive prokaryotes including Methanobrevibacter smithii and an enrichment in potentially pathogenic Proteobacteria, Fusobacteria and Streptococcus gallolyticus. A complex of 12 species identified only in healthy children using culturomics and metagenomics were identified as probiotics candidates, providing a possible, defined, reproducible, safe, and convenient alternative to fecal transplantation to restore a healthy gut microbiota in malnourished children. Microbiotherapy based on selected strains has the potential to improve the current treatment of severe acute malnutrition and prevent relapse and death by reestablishing a healthy gut microbiota.

  16. TH-B-BRC-01: How to Identify and Resolve Potential Clinical Errors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Das, I. [NYU Langone Medical Center, New York, NY (United States)

    2016-06-15

    Radiation treatment consists of a chain of events influenced by the quality of machine operation, beam data commissioning, machine calibration, patient specific data, simulation, treatment planning, imaging and treatment delivery. There is always a chance that the clinical medical physicist may make or fail to detect an error in one of the events that may impact on the patient’s treatment. In the clinical scenario, errors may be systematic and, without peer review, may have a low detectability because they are not part of routine QA procedures. During treatment, there might be errors on machine that needs attention. External reviews of some of the treatment delivery components by independent reviewers, like IROC, can detect errors, but may not be timely. The goal of this session is to help junior clinical physicists identify potential errors as well as the approach of quality assurance to perform a root cause analysis to find and eliminate an error and to continually monitor for errors. A compilation of potential errors will be presented by examples of the thought process required to spot the error and determine the root cause. Examples may include unusual machine operation, erratic electrometer reading, consistent lower electron output, variation in photon output, body parts inadvertently left in beam, unusual treatment plan, poor normalization, hot spots etc. Awareness of the possibility and detection of error in any link of the treatment process chain will help improve the safe and accurate delivery of radiation to patients. Four experts will discuss how to identify errors in four areas of clinical treatment. D. Followill, NIH grant CA 180803.

  17. TH-B-BRC-01: How to Identify and Resolve Potential Clinical Errors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Das, I.

    2016-01-01

    Radiation treatment consists of a chain of events influenced by the quality of machine operation, beam data commissioning, machine calibration, patient specific data, simulation, treatment planning, imaging and treatment delivery. There is always a chance that the clinical medical physicist may make or fail to detect an error in one of the events that may impact on the patient’s treatment. In the clinical scenario, errors may be systematic and, without peer review, may have a low detectability because they are not part of routine QA procedures. During treatment, there might be errors on machine that needs attention. External reviews of some of the treatment delivery components by independent reviewers, like IROC, can detect errors, but may not be timely. The goal of this session is to help junior clinical physicists identify potential errors as well as the approach of quality assurance to perform a root cause analysis to find and eliminate an error and to continually monitor for errors. A compilation of potential errors will be presented by examples of the thought process required to spot the error and determine the root cause. Examples may include unusual machine operation, erratic electrometer reading, consistent lower electron output, variation in photon output, body parts inadvertently left in beam, unusual treatment plan, poor normalization, hot spots etc. Awareness of the possibility and detection of error in any link of the treatment process chain will help improve the safe and accurate delivery of radiation to patients. Four experts will discuss how to identify errors in four areas of clinical treatment. D. Followill, NIH grant CA 180803

  18. Diagnosis of Lynch Syndrome: Genetic Testing Identifies a Potentially Deadly Hereditary Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... of Lynch Syndrome Follow us A Diagnosis of Lynch Syndrome Genetic testing identifies a potentially deadly hereditary disease ... helped Jack learn what was wrong. Jack had Lynch Syndrome—an inherited disorder. Lynch Syndrome increases the risk ...

  19. Developing leadership as a trainee- opportunities, barriers and potential improvements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doherty, Rachel; Lawson, Sara; Mc Laughlin, Laura; Donaghy, Grainne; Courtney, Julia; Gardiner, Keith

    2018-05-01

    The General Medical Council explicitly state that doctors completing training should demonstrate capabilities in leadership and teamwork. 1 However, most trainees receive little formal training in leadership. In March 2017, at the Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management (FMLM) Northern Ireland Regional Conference, a workshop on developing leadership skills as a trainee was hosted and the views of doctors in training regarding current opportunities, potential barriers and improvements were sought. In Northern Ireland presently there are a number of opportunities available for trainees to gain experience in leadership - both by learning through observation and learning through experience. These range from informal activities which do not require significant time commitment to focused, immersive leadership experiences such as ADEPT (Achieve Develop Explore Programme for Trainees) 2 , and the Royal College of Physicians' Chief Registrar scheme. 3 Several barriers to developing leadership have been identified, including limited understanding of what constitutes leadership, a lack of senior support and little formal recognition for trainees leading teams. Time pressures, frequently rotating jobs, limited resources and difficulty upscaling can also undermine the sustainability of improvement and other leadership projects. Incorporating awareness of and training in leadership skills, as well as greater engagement with senior leaders and managers, at an early stage in training could promote understanding and encourage trainees. Formalising leadership roles within training posts may improve experience. Deaneries and Trusts can also enable leadership opportunities by facilitating study leave, raising awareness amongst supervisors, and providing career enhancing incentives for interested trainees.

  20. Improved Density Functional Tight Binding Potentials for Metalloid Aluminum Clusters

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-01

    unlimited IMPROVED DENSITY-FUNCTIONAL TIGHT BINDING POTENTIALS FOR METALLOID ALUMINUM CLUSTERS by Joon H. Kim June 2016 Thesis Advisor...DATES COVERED Master’s thesis 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE IMPROVED DENSITY-FUNCTIONAL TIGHT BINDING POTENTIALS FOR METALLOID ALUMINUM CLUSTERS 5. FUNDING...repulsive potentials for use in density-functional tight binding (DFTB) simulations of low-valence aluminum metalloid clusters . These systems are under

  1. Identifying effective pathways in a successful continuous quality improvement programme: the GEDAPS study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodicoat, Danielle H; Mundet, Xavier; Gray, Laura J; Cos, Xavier; Davies, Melanie J; Khunti, Kamlesh; Cano, Juan-Franciso

    2014-12-01

    Continuous quality improvement programmes often target several aspects of care, some of which may be more effective meaning that resources could be focussed on these. The objective was to identify the effective and ineffective aspects of a successful continuous quality improvement programme for individuals with type 2 diabetes in primary care. Data were from a series of cross-sectional studies (GEDAPS) in primary care, Catalonia, Spain, in 55 centres (2239 participants) in 1993, and 92 centres (5819 participants) in 2002. A structural equation modelling approach was used. The intervention was associated with improved microvascular outcomes through microalbuminuria and funduscopy screening, which had a direct effect on microvascular outcomes, and through attending 2-4 nurse visits and having ≥1 blood pressure measurement, which acted through reducing systolic blood pressure. The intervention was associated with improved macrovascular outcomes through blood pressure measurement and attending 2-4 nurse visits (through systolic blood pressure) and having ≥3 education topics, ≥1 HbA1c measurement and adequate medication (through HbA1c). Cholesterol measurement, weight measurement and foot examination did not contribute towards the effectiveness of the intervention. The pathways through which a continuous quality improvement programme appeared to act to reduce microvascular and macrovascular complications were driven by reductions in systolic blood pressure and HbA1c, which were attained through changes in nurse and education visits, measurement and medication. This suggests that these factors are potential areas on which future quality improvement programmes should focus. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  2. Improving the precision of lake ecosystem metabolism estimates by identifying predictors of model uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Kevin C.; Winslow, Luke A.; Read, Jordan S.; Read, Emily K.; Solomon, Christopher T.; Adrian, Rita; Hanson, Paul C.

    2014-01-01

    Diel changes in dissolved oxygen are often used to estimate gross primary production (GPP) and ecosystem respiration (ER) in aquatic ecosystems. Despite the widespread use of this approach to understand ecosystem metabolism, we are only beginning to understand the degree and underlying causes of uncertainty for metabolism model parameter estimates. Here, we present a novel approach to improve the precision and accuracy of ecosystem metabolism estimates by identifying physical metrics that indicate when metabolism estimates are highly uncertain. Using datasets from seventeen instrumented GLEON (Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network) lakes, we discovered that many physical characteristics correlated with uncertainty, including PAR (photosynthetically active radiation, 400-700 nm), daily variance in Schmidt stability, and wind speed. Low PAR was a consistent predictor of high variance in GPP model parameters, but also corresponded with low ER model parameter variance. We identified a threshold (30% of clear sky PAR) below which GPP parameter variance increased rapidly and was significantly greater in nearly all lakes compared with variance on days with PAR levels above this threshold. The relationship between daily variance in Schmidt stability and GPP model parameter variance depended on trophic status, whereas daily variance in Schmidt stability was consistently positively related to ER model parameter variance. Wind speeds in the range of ~0.8-3 m s–1 were consistent predictors of high variance for both GPP and ER model parameters, with greater uncertainty in eutrophic lakes. Our findings can be used to reduce ecosystem metabolism model parameter uncertainty and identify potential sources of that uncertainty.

  3. The adoption potential of biomass transfer and improved fallow ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Mo

    Analysis identified optimal combinations of organic and inorganic soil improvement ... associated required investments (capital, labour, and land) of the options within a farm ...... The authors would like to thank The Rockefeller Foundation.

  4. Identifying treatment responders and predictors of improvement after cognitive-behavioral therapy for juvenile fibromyalgia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sil, Soumitri; Arnold, Lesley M; Lynch-Jordan, Anne; Ting, Tracy V; Peugh, James; Cunningham, Natoshia; Powers, Scott W; Lovell, Daniel J; Hashkes, Philip J; Passo, Murray; Schikler, Kenneth N; Kashikar-Zuck, Susmita

    2014-07-01

    The primary objective of this study was to estimate a clinically significant and quantifiable change in functional disability to identify treatment responders in a clinical trial of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for youth with juvenile fibromyalgia (JFM). The second objective was to examine whether baseline functional disability (Functional Disability Inventory), pain intensity, depressive symptoms (Children's Depression Inventory), coping self-efficacy (Pain Coping Questionnaire), and parental pain history predicted treatment response in disability at 6-month follow-up. Participants were 100 adolescents (11-18 years of age) with JFM enrolled in a recently published clinical trial comparing CBT to a fibromyalgia education (FE) intervention. Patients were identified as achieving a clinically significant change in disability (i.e., were considered treatment responders) if they achieved both a reliable magnitude of change (estimated as a > or = 7.8-point reduction on the FDI) using the Reliable Change Index, and a reduction in FDI disability grade based on established clinical reference points. Using this rigorous standard, 40% of patients who received CBT (20 of 50) were identified as treatment responders, compared to 28% who received FE (14 of 50). For CBT, patients with greater initial disability and higher coping efficacy were significantly more likely to achieve a clinically significant improvement in functioning. Pain intensity, depressive symptoms, and parent pain history did not significantly predict treatment response. Estimating clinically significant change for outcome measures in behavioral trials sets a high bar but is a potentially valuable approach to improve the quality of clinical trials, to enhance interpretability of treatment effects, and to challenge researchers to develop more potent and tailored interventions. Copyright © 2014 International Association for the Study of Pain. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Exome sequencing of a large family identifies potential candidate genes contributing risk to bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tianxiao; Hou, Liping; Chen, David T; McMahon, Francis J; Wang, Jen-Chyong; Rice, John P

    2018-03-01

    Bipolar disorder is a mental illness with lifetime prevalence of about 1%. Previous genetic studies have identified multiple chromosomal linkage regions and candidate genes that might be associated with bipolar disorder. The present study aimed to identify potential susceptibility variants for bipolar disorder using 6 related case samples from a four-generation family. A combination of exome sequencing and linkage analysis was performed to identify potential susceptibility variants for bipolar disorder. Our study identified a list of five potential candidate genes for bipolar disorder. Among these five genes, GRID1(Glutamate Receptor Delta-1 Subunit), which was previously reported to be associated with several psychiatric disorders and brain related traits, is particularly interesting. Variants with functional significance in this gene were identified from two cousins in our bipolar disorder pedigree. Our findings suggest a potential role for these genes and the related rare variants in the onset and development of bipolar disorder in this one family. Additional research is needed to replicate these findings and evaluate their patho-biological significance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Robust global identifiability theory using potentials--Application to compartmental models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wongvanich, N; Hann, C E; Sirisena, H R

    2015-04-01

    This paper presents a global practical identifiability theory for analyzing and identifying linear and nonlinear compartmental models. The compartmental system is prolonged onto the potential jet space to formulate a set of input-output equations that are integrals in terms of the measured data, which allows for robust identification of parameters without requiring any simulation of the model differential equations. Two classes of linear and non-linear compartmental models are considered. The theory is first applied to analyze the linear nitrous oxide (N2O) uptake model. The fitting accuracy of the identified models from differential jet space and potential jet space identifiability theories is compared with a realistic noise level of 3% which is derived from sensor noise data in the literature. The potential jet space approach gave a match that was well within the coefficient of variation. The differential jet space formulation was unstable and not suitable for parameter identification. The proposed theory is then applied to a nonlinear immunological model for mastitis in cows. In addition, the model formulation is extended to include an iterative method which allows initial conditions to be accurately identified. With up to 10% noise, the potential jet space theory predicts the normalized population concentration infected with pathogens, to within 9% of the true curve. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Improving the time efficiency of identifying dairy herds with poorer welfare in a population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vries, M; Bokkers, E A M; van Schaik, G; Engel, B; Dijkstra, T; de Boer, I J M

    2016-10-01

    Animal-based welfare assessment is time consuming and expensive. A promising strategy for improving the efficiency of identifying dairy herds with poorer welfare is to first estimate levels of welfare in herds based on data that are more easily obtained. Our aims were to evaluate the potential of herd housing and management data for estimating the level of welfare in dairy herds, and to estimate the associated reduction in the number of farm visits required for identification of herds with poorer welfare in a population. Seven trained observers collected data on 6 animal-based welfare indicators in a selected sample of 181 loose-housed Dutch dairy herds (herd size: 22 to 211 cows). Severely lame cows, cows with lesions or swellings, cows with a dirty hindquarter, and very lean cows were counted, and avoidance distance was assessed for a sample of cows. Occurrence of displacements (social behavior) was recorded in the whole barn during 120 min of observation. For the same herds, data regarding cattle housing and management were collected on farms, and data relating to demography, management, milk production and composition, and fertility were extracted from national databases. A herd was classified as having poorer welfare when it belonged to the 25% worst-scoring herds. We used variables of herd housing and management data as potential predictors for individual animal-based welfare indicators in logistic regressions at the herd level. Prediction was less accurate for the avoidance distance index [area under the curve (AUC)=0.69], and moderately accurate for prevalence of severely lame cows (AUC=0.83), prevalence of cows with lesions or swellings (AUC=0.81), prevalence of cows with a dirty hindquarter (AUC=0.74), prevalence of very lean cows (AUC=0.83), and frequency of displacements (AUC=0.72). We compared the number of farm visits required for identifying herds with poorer welfare in a population for a risk-based screening with predictions based on herd housing

  8. Web-based Tool Identifies and Quantifies Potential Cost Savings Measures at the Hanford Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Renevitz, Marisa J.; Peschong, Jon C.; Charboneau, Briant L.; Simpson, Brett C.

    2014-01-01

    The Technical Improvement system is an approachable web-based tool that is available to Hanford DOE staff, site contractors, and general support service contractors as part of the baseline optimization effort underway at the Hanford Site. Finding and implementing technical improvements are a large part of DOE's cost savings efforts. The Technical Improvement dashboard is a key tool for brainstorming and monitoring the progress of submitted baseline optimization and potential cost/schedule efficiencies. The dashboard is accessible to users over the Hanford Local Area Network (HLAN) and provides a highly visual and straightforward status to management on the ideas provided, alleviating the need for resource intensive weekly and monthly reviews

  9. Identifying potential risk situations for humans when removing horses from groups

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartmann, Elke; Søndergaard, Eva; Keeling, Linda J.

    2012-01-01

    Removing a horse from its social group may be considered risky, both for the handler and the horse, because other horses can interfere in the catching process. The main aim of this study was to identify where and when these risk situations occur while removing a horse from its group. A potential...

  10. Identifying potentially cost effective chronic care programs for people with COPD

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    L.M.G. Steuten (Lotte); K.M.M. Lemmens (Karin); A.P. Nieboer (Anna); H.J.M. Vrijhoef (Hubertus)

    2009-01-01

    textabstractObjective: To review published evidence regarding the cost effectiveness of multi-component COPD programs and to illustrate how potentially cost effective programs can be identified. Methods: Systematic search of Medline and Cochrane databases for evaluations of multicomponent disease

  11. Identifying High Academic Potential in Australian Aboriginal Children Using Dynamic Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaffey, Graham W.; Bailey, Stan B.; Vine, Ken W.

    2015-01-01

    The primary purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of dynamic testing as a method for identifying high academic potential in Australian Aboriginal children. The 79 participating Aboriginal children were drawn from Years 3-5 in rural schools in northern New South Wales. The dynamic testing method used in this study involved a…

  12. The potential benefit of improving the dissemination of agricultural weather information to the Mississippi cotton farmer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priddy, K. T.; Marlatt, W. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1978-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. The potential benefit of improved dissemination of weather information to the Mississippi cotton farmer was estimated at $36,000 per 1000 acres. This is 16% of production cost of cotton in 1976. On a statewide basis, the total potential savings exceeds 100 million dollars.

  13. Registrar wellness in Botswana: Measuring burnout and identifying ways to improve wellness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K D Westmoreland

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Background. Burnout during registrar training is high, especially in resource-limited settings where stressors are intensified. Burnout leads to decreased quality of life for doctors, poor job and patient satisfaction, and difficulty retaining doctors. Objectives. Primary: to measure burnout among registrars working at Princess Marina Hospital in Gaborone, Botswana. Secondary: to determine factors contributing to burnout and identify potential wellness interventions. Methods. The validated Maslach Burnout Inventory was used to measure the degree of emotional exhaustion, depersonalisation and personal accomplishment. Work-related difficulties and potential wellness interventions were explored through multiple-choice and open-ended questions. Results. Of 40 eligible registrars, 20 (50% completed the survey. High levels of burnout were reported for emotional exhaustion in 65% (13/20, depersonalisation in 45% (9/20, and personal accomplishment in 35% (7/20 of registrars. A high degree of burnout was reported by 75% (15/20 of registrars in one or more domains. In the previous 7 days, registrars worked an average of 77 hours, took 1.5 overnight calls, slept 5.7 hours per night, and 53% (10/19 had ≥1 of their patients die. Five (25% registrars considered leaving Botswana to work in another country, which correlated with those with the highest degree of burnout. The most common frustrations included insufficient salary and limited medical resources. Suggested interventions included improved mentorship and wellness lectures. Conclusions. There is a high degree of burnout, especially emotional exhaustion, among registrars. Encouragingly, most registrars have a desire to work in Botswana after training. Future research on improving registrar wellness in low-resource settings is urgently needed.

  14. A universal meteorological method to identify potential risk of wind erosion on heavy-textured soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Středová Hana

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The climate of Central Europe, mainly winter seasons with no snow cover at lower altitudes and a spring drought as well, might cause erosion events on heavy-textured soils. The aim of this paper is to define a universal method to identify the potential risk of wind erosion on heavy-textured soils. The categorization of potential wind erosion risk due to meteorological conditions is based on: (i an evaluation of the number of freeze-thaw episodes forming bare soil surfaces during the cold period of year; and (ii, an evaluation of the number of days with wet soil surfaces during the cold period of year. In the period 2001–2012 (from November to March, episodes with temperature changes from positive to negative and vice versa (thaw-freeze and freeze-thaw cycles and the effects of wet soil surfaces in connection with aggregate disintegration, are identified. The data are spatially interpolated by GIS tools for areas in the Czech Republic with heavy-textured soils. Blending critical categories is used to locate potential risks. The level of risk is divided into six classes. Those areas identified as potentially most vulnerable are the same localities where the highest number of erosive episodes on heavy-textured soils was documented.

  15. The RISE Framework: Using Learning Analytics to Automatically Identify Open Educational Resources for Continuous Improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodily, Robert; Nyland, Rob; Wiley, David

    2017-01-01

    The RISE (Resource Inspection, Selection, and Enhancement) Framework is a framework supporting the continuous improvement of open educational resources (OER). The framework is an automated process that identifies learning resources that should be evaluated and either eliminated or improved. This is particularly useful in OER contexts where the…

  16. Identifying the potential of changes to blood sample logistics using simulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Pelle Morten Thomas; Jacobsen, Peter; Poulsen, Jørgen Hjelm

    2013-01-01

    of the simulation was to evaluate changes made to the transportation of blood samples between wards and the laboratory. The average- (AWT) and maximum waiting time (MWT) from a blood sample was drawn at the ward until it was received at the laboratory, and the distribution of arrivals of blood samples......, each of the scenarios was tested in terms of what amount of resources would give the optimal result. The simulations showed a big improvement potential in implementing a new technology/mean for transporting the blood samples. The pneumatic tube system showed the biggest potential lowering the AWT...

  17. Identifying potential surface water sampling sites for emerging chemical pollutants in Gauteng Province, South Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Petersen, F; Dabrowski, JM; Forbes, PBC

    2017-01-01

    Emerging chemical pollutants (ECPs) are defined as new chemicals which do not have a regulatory status, but which may have an adverse effect on human health and the environment. The occurrence and concentrations of ECPs in South African water bodies are largely unknown, so monitoring is required in order to determine the potential threat that these ECPs may pose. Relevant surface water sampling sites in the Gauteng Province of South Africa were identified utilising a geographic information sy...

  18. Mapping industrial networks as an approach to identify inter-organisational collaborative potential in new product development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Parraguez, Pedro; Maier, Anja

    2012-01-01

    . Consequently, identifying and selecting potential partners to establish collaboration agreements can be a key activity in the new product development process. This paper explores the implications of mapping industrial networks with the purpose of identifying inter-organisational collaborative potential...

  19. Potential ligand-binding residues in rat olfactory receptors identified by correlated mutation analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, M. S.; Oliveira, L.; Vriend, G.; Shepherd, G. M.

    1995-01-01

    A family of G-protein-coupled receptors is believed to mediate the recognition of odor molecules. In order to identify potential ligand-binding residues, we have applied correlated mutation analysis to receptor sequences from the rat. This method identifies pairs of sequence positions where residues remain conserved or mutate in tandem, thereby suggesting structural or functional importance. The analysis supported molecular modeling studies in suggesting several residues in positions that were consistent with ligand-binding function. Two of these positions, dominated by histidine residues, may play important roles in ligand binding and could confer broad specificity to mammalian odor receptors. The presence of positive (overdominant) selection at some of the identified positions provides additional evidence for roles in ligand binding. Higher-order groups of correlated residues were also observed. Each group may interact with an individual ligand determinant, and combinations of these groups may provide a multi-dimensional mechanism for receptor diversity.

  20. Metabolomic screening using ESI-FT MS identifies potential radiation-responsive molecules in mouse urine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Iizuka, Daisuke; Yoshioka, Susumu; Kawai, Hidehiko; Izumi, Shunsuke; Suzuki, Fumio; Kamiya, Kenji

    2017-01-01

    The demand for establishment of high-throughput biodosimetric methods is increasing. Our aim in this study was to identify low-molecular-weight urinary radiation-responsive molecules using electrospray ionization Fourier transform mass spectrometry (ESI-FT MS), and our final goal was to develop a sensitive biodosimetry technique that can be applied in the early triage of a radiation emergency medical system. We identified nine metabolites by statistical comparison of mouse urine before and 8 h after irradiation. Time-course analysis showed that, of these metabolites, thymidine and either thymine or imidazoleacetic acid were significantly increased dose-dependently 8 h after radiation exposure; these molecules have already been reported as potential radiation biomarkers. Phenyl glucuronide was significantly decreased 8 h after radiation exposure, irrespective of the dose. Histamine and 1-methylhistamine were newly identified by MS/MS and showed significant, dose-dependent increases 72 h after irradiation. Quantification of 1-methylhistamine by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) analysis also showed a significant increase 72 h after 4 Gy irradiation. These results suggest that urinary metabolomics screening using ESI-FT MS can be a powerful tool for identifying promising radiation-responsive molecules, and that urinary 1-methylhistamine is a potential radiation-responsive molecule for acute, high-dose exposure.

  1. Spontaneous swallowing frequency has potential to identify dysphagia in acute stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crary, Michael A; Carnaby, Giselle D; Sia, Isaac; Khanna, Anna; Waters, Michael F

    2013-12-01

    Spontaneous swallowing frequency has been described as an index of dysphagia in various health conditions. This study evaluated the potential of spontaneous swallow frequency analysis as a screening protocol for dysphagia in acute stroke. In a cohort of 63 acute stroke cases, swallow frequency rates (swallows per minute [SPM]) were compared with stroke and swallow severity indices, age, time from stroke to assessment, and consciousness level. Mean differences in SPM were compared between patients with versus without clinically significant dysphagia. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis was used to identify the optimal threshold in SPM, which was compared with a validated clinical dysphagia examination for identification of dysphagia cases. Time series analysis was used to identify the minimally adequate time period to complete spontaneous swallow frequency analysis. SPM correlated significantly with stroke and swallow severity indices but not with age, time from stroke onset, or consciousness level. Patients with dysphagia demonstrated significantly lower SPM rates. SPM differed by dysphagia severity. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis yielded a threshold of SPM≤0.40 that identified dysphagia (per the criterion referent) with 0.96 sensitivity, 0.68 specificity, and 0.96 negative predictive value. Time series analysis indicated that a 5- to 10-minute sampling window was sufficient to calculate spontaneous swallow frequency to identify dysphagia cases in acute stroke. Spontaneous swallowing frequency presents high potential to screen for dysphagia in acute stroke without the need for trained, available personnel.

  2. Spontaneous Swallowing Frequency [Has Potential to] Identify Dysphagia in Acute Stroke

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carnaby, Giselle D; Sia, Isaac; Khanna, Anna; Waters, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Background and Purpose Spontaneous swallowing frequency has been described as an index of dysphagia in various health conditions. This study evaluated the potential of spontaneous swallow frequency analysis as a screening protocol for dysphagia in acute stroke. Methods In a cohort of 63 acute stroke cases swallow frequency rates (swallows per minute: SPM) were compared to stroke and swallow severity indices, age, time from stroke to assessment, and consciousness level. Mean differences in SPM were compared between patients with vs. without clinically significant dysphagia. ROC analysis was used to identify the optimal threshold in SPM which was compared to a validated clinical dysphagia examination for identification of dysphagia cases. Time series analysis was employed to identify the minimally adequate time period to complete spontaneous swallow frequency analysis. Results SPM correlated significantly with stroke and swallow severity indices but not with age, time from stroke onset, or consciousness level. Patients with dysphagia demonstrated significantly lower SPM rates. SPM differed by dysphagia severity. ROC analysis yielded a threshold of SPM ≤ 0.40 which identified dysphagia (per the criterion referent) with 0.96 sensitivity, 0.68 specificity, and 0.96 negative predictive value. Time series analysis indicated that a 5 to 10 minute sampling window was sufficient to calculate spontaneous swallow frequency to identify dysphagia cases in acute stroke. Conclusions Spontaneous swallowing frequency presents high potential to screen for dysphagia in acute stroke without the need for trained, available personnel. PMID:24149008

  3. Identifying the potential of changes to blood sample logistics using simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jørgensen, Pelle; Jacobsen, Peter; Poulsen, Jørgen Hjelm

    2013-01-01

    Using simulation as an approach to display and improve internal logistics at hospitals has great potential. This study shows how a simulation model displaying the morning blood-taking round at a Danish public hospital can be developed and utilized with the aim of improving the logistics. The focus of the simulation was to evaluate changes made to the transportation of blood samples between wards and the laboratory. The average- (AWT) and maximum waiting time (MWT) from a blood sample was drawn at the ward until it was received at the laboratory, and the distribution of arrivals of blood samples in the laboratory were used as the evaluation criteria. Four different scenarios were tested and compared with the current approach: (1) Using AGVs (mobile robots), (2) using a pneumatic tube system, (3) using porters that are called upon, or (4) using porters that come to the wards every 45 minutes. Furthermore, each of the scenarios was tested in terms of what amount of resources would give the optimal result. The simulations showed a big improvement potential in implementing a new technology/mean for transporting the blood samples. The pneumatic tube system showed the biggest potential lowering the AWT and MWT with approx. 36% and 18%, respectively. Additionally, all of the scenarios had a more even distribution of arrivals except for porters coming to the wards every 45 min. As a consequence of the results obtained in the study, the hospital decided to implement a pneumatic tube system.

  4. Characterization of potential mineralization in Afghanistan: four permissive areas identified using imaging spectroscopy data

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Trude V.V.; Berger, Byron R.; Johnson, Michaela R.

    2014-01-01

    As part of the U.S. Geological Survey and Department of Defense Task Force for Business and Stability Operations natural resources revitalization activities in Afghanistan, four permissive areas for mineralization, Bamyan 1, Farah 1, Ghazni 1, and Ghazni 2, have been identified using imaging spectroscopy data. To support economic development, the areas of potential mineralization were selected on the occurrence of selected mineral assemblages mapped using the HyMap™ data (kaolinite, jarosite, hydrated silica, chlorite, epidote, iron-bearing carbonate, buddingtonite, dickite, and alunite) that may be indicative of past mineralization processes in areas with limited or no previous mineral resource studies. Approximately 30 sites were initially determined to be candidates for areas of potential mineralization. Additional criteria and material used to refine the selection and prioritization process included existing geologic maps, Landsat Thematic Mapper data, and published literature. The HyMapTM data were interpreted in the context of the regional geologic and tectonic setting and used the presence of alteration mineral assemblages to identify areas with the potential for undiscovered mineral resources. Further field-sampling, mapping, and supporting geochemical analyses are necessary to fully substantiate and verify the specific deposit types in the four areas of potential mineralization.

  5. Testing the potential of geochemical techniques for identifying hydrological systems within landslides in partly weathered marls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bogaard, T. A.; Buma, J. T.; Klawer, C. J. M.

    2004-03-01

    interventions since the hydrological system and the origin of the water need to be known in detail. It is also plausible that long-term predictions of slope stability may be improved by knowledge of the hydrogeochemical evolution of clayey landslides. From the analysis, it is concluded that geochemistry is a potentially valuable technique for landslide research, but it is recognized that a lot of work still has to be done before the technique can be applied in engineering practice.

  6. Economic versus environmental improvement potentials of Danish pig farms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Asmild, Mette; Hougaard, Jens Leth

    2006-01-01

    This article demonstrates how economic and environmental improvement potentials of Danish pig farms can be estimated using Data envelopment analysis (DEA). To avoid some of the problems associated with the definition of undesirable outputs, environmental variables are included as nutrients applied...

  7. Gene expression profile identifies potential biomarkers for human intervertebral disc degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Wei; Zhang, Bin; Li, Yan; Duan, Hui-Quan; Sun, Chao; Xu, Yun-Qiang; Feng, Shi-Qing

    2017-12-01

    The present study aimed to reveal the potential genes associated with the pathogenesis of intervertebral disc degeneration (IDD) by analyzing microarray data using bioinformatics. Gene expression profiles of two regions of the intervertebral disc were compared between patients with IDD and controls. GSE70362 containing two groups of gene expression profiles, 16 nucleus pulposus (NP) samples from patients with IDD and 8 from controls, and 16 annulus fibrosus (AF) samples from patients with IDD and 8 from controls, was downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus database. A total of 93 and 114 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified in NP and AF samples, respectively, using a limma software package for the R programming environment. Gene Ontology (GO) function enrichment analysis was performed to identify the associated biological functions of DEGs in IDD, which indicated that the DEGs may be involved in various processes, including cell adhesion, biological adhesion and extracellular matrix organization. Pathway enrichment analysis using the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) demonstrated that the identified DEGs were potentially involved in focal adhesion and the p53 signaling pathway. Further analysis revealed that there were 35 common DEGs observed between the two regions (NP and AF), which may be further regulated by 6 clusters of microRNAs (miRNAs) retrieved with WebGestalt. The genes in the DEG‑miRNA regulatory network were annotated using GO function and KEGG pathway enrichment analysis, among which extracellular matrix organization was the most significant disrupted biological process and focal adhesion was the most significant dysregulated pathway. In addition, the result of protein‑protein interaction network modules demonstrated the involvement of inflammatory cytokine interferon signaling in IDD. These findings may not only advance the understanding of the pathogenesis of IDD, but also identify novel potential

  8. What's the risk? Identifying potential human pathogens within grey-headed flying foxes faeces.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebekah Henry

    Full Text Available Pteropus poliocephalus (grey-headed flying foxes are recognised vectors for a range of potentially fatal human pathogens. However, to date research has primarily focused on viral disease carriage, overlooking bacterial pathogens, which also represent a significant human disease risk. The current study applied 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing, community analysis and a multi-tiered database OTU picking approach to identify faecal-derived zoonotic bacteria within two colonies of P. poliocephalus from Victoria, Australia. Our data show that sequences associated with Enterobacteriaceae (62.8% ± 24.7%, Pasteurellaceae (19.9% ± 25.7% and Moraxellaceae (9.4% ± 11.8% dominate flying fox faeces. Further colony specific differences in bacterial faecal colonisation patterns were also identified. In total, 34 potential pathogens, representing 15 genera, were identified. However, species level definition was only possible for Clostridium perfringens, which likely represents a low infectious risk due to the low proportion observed within the faeces and high infectious dose required for transmission. In contrast, sequences associated with other pathogenic species clusters such as Haemophilus haemolyticus-H. influenzae and Salmonella bongori-S. enterica, were present at high proportions in the faeces, and due to their relatively low infectious doses and modes of transmissions, represent a greater potential human disease risk. These analyses of the microbial community composition of Pteropus poliocephalus have significantly advanced our understanding of the potential bacterial disease risk associated with flying foxes and should direct future epidemiological and quantitative microbial risk assessments to further define the health risks presented by these animals.

  9. Testing the potential of geochemical techniques in identifying hydrological systems within landslides in partly weathered marls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bogaard, T. A.

    2003-04-01

    This paper’s objectives are twofold: to test the potential of cation exchange capacity (CEC) analysis for refinement of the knowledge of the hydrological system in landslide areas; and to examine two laboratory CEC analysis techniques on their applicability to partly weathered marls. The NH4Ac and NaCl laboratory techniques are tested. The geochemical results are compared with the core descriptions and interpreted with respect to their usefulness. Both analysis techniques give identical results for CEC, and are plausible on the basis of the available clay content information. The determination of the exchangeable cations was more difficult, since part of the marls dissolved. With the ammonium-acetate method more of the marls are dissolved than with the sodium-chloride method. This negatively affects the results of the exchangeable cations. Therefore, the NaCl method is to be preferred for the determination of the cation fractions at the complex, be it that this method has the disadvantage that the sodium fraction cannot be determined. To overcome this problem it is recommended to try and use another salt e.g. SrCl2 as displacement fluid. Both Alvera and Boulc-Mondorès examples show transitions in cation composition with depth. It was shown that the exchangeable cation fractions can be useful in locating boundaries between water types, especially the boundary between the superficial, rain fed hydrological system and the lower, regional ground water system. This information may be important for landslide interventions since the hydrological system and the origin of the water need to be known in detail. It is also plausible that long-term predictions of slope stability may be improved by knowledge of the hydrogeochemical evolution of clayey landslides. In the Boulc-Mondorès example the subsurface information that can be extracted from CEC analyses was presented. In the Boulc-Mondorès cores deviant intervals of CEC could be identified. These are interpreted as

  10. Vitiligo blood transcriptomics provides new insights into disease mechanisms and identifies potential novel therapeutic targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dey-Rao, Rama; Sinha, Animesh A

    2017-01-28

    Significant gaps remain regarding the pathomechanisms underlying the autoimmune response in vitiligo (VL), where the loss of self-tolerance leads to the targeted killing of melanocytes. Specifically, there is incomplete information regarding alterations in the systemic environment that are relevant to the disease state. We undertook a genome-wide profiling approach to examine gene expression in the peripheral blood of VL patients and healthy controls in the context of our previously published VL-skin gene expression profile. We used several in silico bioinformatics-based analyses to provide new insights into disease mechanisms and suggest novel targets for future therapy. Unsupervised clustering methods of the VL-blood dataset demonstrate a "disease-state"-specific set of co-expressed genes. Ontology enrichment analysis of 99 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) uncovers a down-regulated immune/inflammatory response, B-Cell antigen receptor (BCR) pathways, apoptosis and catabolic processes in VL-blood. There is evidence for both type I and II interferon (IFN) playing a role in VL pathogenesis. We used interactome analysis to identify several key blood associated transcriptional factors (TFs) from within (STAT1, STAT6 and NF-kB), as well as "hidden" (CREB1, MYC, IRF4, IRF1, and TP53) from the dataset that potentially affect disease pathogenesis. The TFs overlap with our reported lesional-skin transcriptional circuitry, underscoring their potential importance to the disease. We also identify a shared VL-blood and -skin transcriptional "hot spot" that maps to chromosome 6, and includes three VL-blood dysregulated genes (PSMB8, PSMB9 and TAP1) described as potential VL-associated genetic susceptibility loci. Finally, we provide bioinformatics-based support for prioritizing dysregulated genes in VL-blood or skin as potential therapeutic targets. We examined the VL-blood transcriptome in context with our (previously published) VL-skin transcriptional profile to address

  11. Identifying Potential Recommendation Domains for Conservation Agriculture in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Malawi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tesfaye, Kindie; Jaleta, Moti; Jena, Pradyot; Mutenje, Munyaradzi

    2015-02-01

    Conservation agriculture (CA) is being promoted as an option for reducing soil degradation, conserving water, enhancing crop productivity, and maintaining yield stability. However, CA is a knowledge- and technology-intensive practice, and may not be feasible or may not perform better than conventional agriculture under all conditions and farming systems. Using high resolution (≈1 km2) biophysical and socioeconomic geospatial data, this study identified potential recommendation domains (RDs) for CA in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Malawi. The biophysical variables used were soil texture, surface slope, and rainfall while the socioeconomic variables were market access and human and livestock population densities. Based on feasibility and comparative performance of CA over conventional agriculture, the biophysical and socioeconomic factors were first used to classify cultivated areas into three biophysical and three socioeconomic potential domains, respectively. Combinations of biophysical and socioeconomic domains were then used to develop potential RDs for CA based on adoption potential within the cultivated areas. About 39, 12, and 5 % of the cultivated areas showed high biophysical and socioeconomic potential while 50, 39, and 21 % of the cultivated areas showed high biophysical and medium socioeconomic potential for CA in Malawi, Kenya, and Ethiopia, respectively. The results indicate considerable acreages of land with high CA adoption potential in the mixed crop-livestock systems of the studied countries. However, there are large differences among countries depending on biophysical and socio-economic conditions. The information generated in this study could be used for targeting CA and prioritizing CA-related agricultural research and investment priorities in the three countries.

  12. Identifying potentially eligible subjects for research: paper-based logs versus the hospital administrative database.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magee, L A; Massey, K; von Dadelszen, P; Fazio, M; Payne, B; Liston, R

    2011-12-01

    The Canadian Perinatal Network (CPN) is a national database focused on threatened very pre-term birth. Women with one or more conditions most commonly associated with very pre-term birth are included if admitted to a participating tertiary perinatal unit at 22 weeks and 0 days to 28 weeks and 6 days. At BC Women's Hospital and Health Centre, we compared traditional paper-based ward logs and a search of the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) electronic database of inpatient discharges to identify patients. The study identified 244 women potentially eligible for inclusion in the CPN admitted between April and December 2007. Of the 155 eligible women entered into the CPN database, each method identified a similar number of unique records (142 and 147) not ascertained by the other: 10 (6.4%) by CIHI search and 5 (3.2%) by ward log review. However, CIHI search achieved these results after reviewing fewer records (206 vs. 223) in less time (0.67 vs. 13.6 hours for ward logs). Either method is appropriate for identification of potential research subjects using gestational age criteria. Although electronic methods are less time-consuming, they cannot be performed until after the patient is discharged and records and charts are reviewed. Each method's advantages and disadvantages will dictate use for a specific project.

  13. The potential for research-based information in public health: Identifying unrecognised information needs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Forsetlund Louise

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Objective To explore whether there is a potential for greater use of research-based information in public health practice in a local setting. Secondly, if research-based information is relevant, to explore the extent to which this generates questioning behaviour. Design Qualitative study using focus group discussions, observation and interviews. Setting Public health practices in Norway. Participants 52 public health practitioners. Results In general, the public health practitioners had a positive attitude towards research-based information, but believed that they had few cases requiring this type of information. They did say, however, that there might be a potential for greater use. During five focus groups and six observation days we identified 28 questions/cases where it would have been appropriate to seek out research evidence according to our definition. Three of the public health practitioners identified three of these 28 cases as questions for which research-based information could have been relevant. This gap is interpreted as representing unrecognised information needs. Conclusions There is an unrealised potential in public health practice for more frequent and extensive use of research-based information. The practitioners did not appear to reflect on the need for scientific information when faced with new cases and few questions of this type were generated.

  14. Potential Global Benefits of Improved Ceiling Fan Energy Efficiency

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sathaye, Nakul [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Phadke, Amol [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Shah, Nihar [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Letschert, Virginie [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)

    2012-10-31

    Ceiling fans contribute significantly to residential electricity consumption, both in an absolute sense and as a proportion of household consumption in many locations, especially in developing countries in warm climates. However, there has been little detailed assessment of the costs and benefits of efficiency improvement options for ceiling fans and the potential resulting electricity consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions. We analyze the costs and benefits of several options to improve the efficiency of ceiling fans and assess the global potential for electricity savings and GHG emission reductions with more detailed assessments for India, China, and the U.S. We find that ceiling fan efficiency can be cost-effectively improved by at least 50% using commercially available technology. If these efficiency improvements are implemented in all ceiling fans sold by 2020, 70 terrawatt hours per year (TWh/year) could be saved and 25 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per year could be avoided, globally. We assess how policies and programs such as standards, labels, and financial incentives can be used to accelerate the adoption of efficient ceiling fans in order to realize this savings potential.

  15. Using Helicopter Electromagnetic Surveys to Identify Potential Hazards at Mine Waste Impoundments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hammack, R.W.

    2008-01-01

    In July 2003, helicopter electromagnetic surveys were conducted at 14 coal waste impoundments in southern West Virginia. The purpose of the surveys was to detect conditions that could lead to impoundment failure either by structural failure of the embankment or by the flooding of adjacent or underlying mine works. Specifically, the surveys attempted to: 1) identify saturated zones within the mine waste, 2) delineate filtrate flow paths through the embankment or into adjacent strata and receiving streams, and 3) identify flooded mine workings underlying or adjacent to the waste impoundment. Data from the helicopter surveys were processed to generate conductivity/depth images. Conductivity/depth images were then spatially linked to georeferenced air photos or topographic maps for interpretation. Conductivity/depth images were found to provide a snapshot of the hydrologic conditions that exist within the impoundment. This information can be used to predict potential areas of failure within the embankment because of its ability to image the phreatic zone. Also, the electromagnetic survey can identify areas of unconsolidated slurry in the decant basin and beneath the embankment. Although shallow, flooded mineworks beneath the impoundment were identified by this survey, it cannot be assumed that electromagnetic surveys can detect all underlying mines. A preliminary evaluation of the data implies that helicopter electromagnetic surveys can provide a better understanding of the phreatic zone than the piezometer arrays that are typically used.

  16. Genome-wide gene expression dataset used to identify potential therapeutic targets in androgenetic alopecia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Dey-Rao

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The microarray dataset attached to this report is related to the research article with the title: “A genomic approach to susceptibility and pathogenesis leads to identifying potential novel therapeutic targets in androgenetic alopecia” (Dey-Rao and Sinha, 2017 [1]. Male-pattern hair loss that is induced by androgens (testosterone in genetically predisposed individuals is known as androgenetic alopecia (AGA. The raw dataset is being made publicly available to enable critical and/or extended analyses. Our related research paper utilizes the attached raw dataset, for genome-wide gene-expression associated investigations. Combined with several in silico bioinformatics-based analyses we were able to delineate five strategic molecular elements as potential novel targets towards future AGA-therapy.

  17. Market potential of nanoremediation in Europe - Market drivers and interventions identified in a deliberative scenario approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartke, Stephan; Hagemann, Nina; Harries, Nicola; Hauck, Jennifer; Bardos, Paul

    2018-04-01

    A deliberate expert-based scenario approach is applied to better understand the likely determinants of the evolution of the market for nanoparticles use in remediation in Europe until 2025. An initial set of factors had been obtained from a literature review and was complemented by a workshop and key-informant interviews. In further expert engaging formats - focus groups, workshops, conferences, surveys - this initial set of factors was condensed and engaged experts scored the factors regarding their importance for being likely to influence the market development. An interaction matrix was obtained identifying the factors being most active in shaping the market development in Europe by 2025, namely "Science-Policy-Interface" and "Validated information on nanoparticle application potential". Based on these, potential scenarios were determined and development of factors discussed. Conclusions are offered on achievable interventions to enhance nanoremediation deployment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Identifying Pre-Service Teachers’ Beliefs About Teaching EFL and Their Potential Changes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Andrés Suárez Flórez

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available This study aims at identifying pre-service teachers’ beliefs about teaching English as a foreign language and tracking their potential changes throughout the teaching practicum. Participants were two pre-service teachers in their fifth year of their Bachelor of Arts in Foreign Languages program in a public university in Colombia. Data were gathered through a modified version of Beliefs about Language Learning Inventory before the practicum, eight weekly journal entries administered during ten weeks, and two semi-structured interviews at the end of the teaching practicum. The findings revealed that most of the pre-service teachers’ beliefs changed once they faced the reality of the classroom.

  19. Identifying Key Issues and Potential Solutions for Integrated Arrival, Departure, Surface Operations by Surveying Stakeholder Preferences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aponso, Bimal; Coppenbarger, Richard A.; Jung, Yoon; Quon, Leighton; Lohr, Gary; O’Connor, Neil; Engelland, Shawn

    2015-01-01

    NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD) collaborates with the FAA and industry to provide concepts and technologies that enhance the transition to the next-generation air-traffic management system (NextGen). To facilitate this collaboration, ARMD has a series of Airspace Technology Demonstration (ATD) sub-projects that develop, demonstrate, and transitions NASA technologies and concepts for implementation in the National Airspace System (NAS). The second of these sub-projects, ATD-2, is focused on the potential benefits to NAS stakeholders of integrated arrival, departure, surface (IADS) operations. To determine the project objectives and assess the benefits of a potential solution, NASA surveyed NAS stakeholders to understand the existing issues in arrival, departure, and surface operations, and the perceived benefits of better integrating these operations. NASA surveyed a broad cross-section of stakeholders representing the airlines, airports, air-navigation service providers, and industry providers of NAS tools. The survey indicated that improving the predictability of flight times (schedules) could improve efficiency in arrival, departure, and surface operations. Stakeholders also mentioned the need for better strategic and tactical information on traffic constraints as well as better information sharing and a coupled collaborative planning process that allows stakeholders to coordinate IADS operations. To assess the impact of a potential solution, NASA sketched an initial departure scheduling concept and assessed its viability by surveying a select group of stakeholders for a second time. The objective of the departure scheduler was to enable flights to move continuously from gate to cruise with minimal interruption in a busy metroplex airspace environment using strategic and tactical scheduling enhanced by collaborative planning between airlines and service providers. The stakeholders agreed that this departure concept could improve schedule

  20. Geological study for identifying potential aquifer zone in Pakes and Bandung Villages, Konang District, Bangkalan Region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    I Gde Sukadana

    2010-01-01

    Konang District has a problem on fresh water supply particularly in dry season. Two villages in the district, namely Pakes and Konang, are densely populated areas having agriculture activities, so available of sufficient fresh water is necessary. A fresh water source that can be developed in this area is deep groundwater source from potential aquifers. A geological study has been conducted to identify potential aquifer based on lithological aspect and geological structure. According to the regional stratigraphy. the study area consists of Tawun Formation and Ngrayong Formation. They compose of carbonaceous clay stone (the oldest rock unit), carbonaceous clay stone with sandy limestone intercalations, sandy limestone interbed with carbonaceous clay stone, tuff sandstone with clay stone intercalations, and reef limestone (the youngest) respectively. Strike and dip positions of the rocks layers are N110°E/22° - N150°E/26°, located on the south anticline axis with wavy plan to gentle slope of hilly morphology. Among the rock unit, only sandy limestone has fine sand with sub angular in shape and open pack. Qualitatively. this rock has good porosity and permeability and is enables to save and to flow subsurface water. Thus. the sandy limestone is considered as a potential zone for fresh water resources. Whereas, carbonaceous clay stone with clay grain size has low porosity and permeability, so it is potential as a cap rock. (author)

  1. Prioritize Improvement Opportunities Identified In Self-Assessment Using Multi-Criteria Fuzzy Group Decision

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dr.Ghassem Faraj Pour

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Efforts to improve the quality are one of the prerequisites for the success of individual companies and for the competitiveness of all whole companies. In the field of improvement and excellence business excellence models answer to the question that what the better organization is what goals and concepts they follow and according to what standards they behave. The EFQM excellence model can be transition from multiplicity to unity of different existing models. The most important approaches of these models are self-assessment and identifying improvement areas in an organization. On the other side organizations which are at lower level of total quality management will encounter so many areas to improve when using this model and implementing of self-improvement. Choosing the most important key problems are always the main challenges and because of resource constraints and strategic goals organizations have to prioritize identified improvement opportunities. This paper introduces a model for prioritizing and choosing the most significant improvement opportunities using the organization Business Excellence team members and because the analysis and decision making atmosphere for excellence team members is not generally complete with accurate information it seems using of fuzzy decision can be very helpful.

  2. Patterns of Seismicity Associated with USGS Identified Areas of Potentially Induced Seismicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Caitlin; Halihan, Todd

    2018-03-13

    A systematic review across U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) identified potentially induced seismic locations was conducted to discover seismic distance patterns and trends over time away from injection disposal wells. Previous research indicates a 10 km (6 miles) average where the majority of induced seismicity is expected to occur within individual locations, with some areas reporting a larger radius of 35 km (22 miles) to over 70 km (43 miles). This research analyzed earthquake occurrences within nine USGS locations where specified wells were identified as contributors to induced seismicity to determine distance patterns from disposal wells or outward seismic migration over time using established principles of hydrogeology. Results indicate a radius of 31.6 km (20 miles) where 90% of felt earthquakes occur among locations, with the closest proximal felt seismic events, on average, occurring 3 km (1.9 miles) away from injection disposal wells. The results of this research found distance trends across multiple locations of potentially induced seismicity. © 2018, National Ground Water Association.

  3. Virtual target screening to rapidly identify potential protein targets of natural products in drug discovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuri Pevzner

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Inherent biological viability and diversity of natural products make them a potentially rich source for new therapeutics. However, identification of bioactive compounds with desired therapeutic effects and identification of their protein targets is a laborious, expensive process. Extracts from organism samples may show desired activity in phenotypic assays but specific bioactive compounds must be isolated through further separation methods and protein targets must be identified by more specific phenotypic and in vitro experimental assays. Still, questions remain as to whether all relevant protein targets for a compound have been identified. The desire is to understand breadth of purposing for the compound to maximize its use and intellectual property, and to avoid further development of compounds with insurmountable adverse effects. Previously we developed a Virtual Target Screening system that computationally screens one or more compounds against a collection of virtual protein structures. By scoring each compound-protein interaction, we can compare against averaged scores of synthetic drug-like compounds to determine if a particular protein would be a potential target of a compound of interest. Here we provide examples of natural products screened through our system as we assess advantages and shortcomings of our current system in regards to natural product drug discovery.

  4. Virtual target screening to rapidly identify potential protein targets of natural products in drug discovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuri Pevzner

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Inherent biological viability and diversity of natural products make them a potentially rich source for new therapeutics. However, identification of bioactive compounds with desired therapeutic effects and identification of their protein targets is a laborious, expensive process. Extracts from organism samples may show desired activity in phenotypic assays but specific bioactive compounds must be isolated through further separation methods and protein targets must be identified by more specific phenotypic and in vitro experimental assays. Still, questions remain as to whether all relevant protein targets for a compound have been identified. The desire is to understand breadth of purposing for the compound to maximize its use and intellectual property, and to avoid further development of compounds with insurmountable adverse effects. Previously we developed a Virtual Target Screening system that computationally screens one or more compounds against a collection of virtual protein structures. By scoring each compound-protein interaction, we can compare against averaged scores of synthetic drug-like compounds to determine if a particular protein would be a potential target of a compound of interest. Here we provide examples of natural products screened through our system as we assess advantages and shortcomings of our current system in regards to natural product drug discovery.

  5. How accurately does the Brief Job Stress Questionnaire identify workers with or without potential psychological distress?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsutsumi, Akizumi; Inoue, Akiomi; Eguchi, Hisashi

    2017-07-27

    The manual for the Japanese Stress Check Program recommends use of the Brief Job Stress Questionnaire (BJSQ) from among the program's instruments and proposes criteria for defining "high-stress" workers. This study aimed to examine how accurately the BJSQ identifies workers with or without potential psychological distress. We used an online survey to administer the BJSQ with a psychological distress scale (K6) to randomly selected workers (n=1,650). We conducted receiver operating characteristics curve analyses to estimate the screening performance of the cutoff points that the Stress Check Program manual recommends for the BJSQ. Prevalence of workers with potential psychological distress defined as K6 score ≥13 was 13%. Prevalence of "high-risk" workers defined using criteria recommended by the program manual was 16.7% for the original version of the BJSQ. The estimated values were as follows: sensitivity, 60.5%; specificity, 88.9%; Youden index, 0.504; positive predictive value, 47.3%; negative predictive value, 93.8%; positive likelihood ratio, 6.0; and negative likelihood ratio, 0.4. Analyses based on the simplified BJSQ indicated lower sensitivity compared with the original version, although we expected roughly the same screening performance for the best scenario using the original version. Our analyses in which psychological distress measured by K6 was set as the target condition indicate less than half of the identified "high-stress" workers warrant consideration for secondary screening for psychological distress.

  6. Rapid, computer vision-enabled murine screening system identifies neuropharmacological potential of two new mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven L Roberds

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The lack of predictive in vitro models for behavioral phenotypes impedes rapid advancement in neuropharmacology and psychopharmacology. In vivo behavioral assays are more predictive of activity in human disorders, but such assays are often highly resource-intensive. Here we describe the successful application of a computer vision-enabled system to identify potential neuropharmacological activity of two new mechanisms. The analytical system was trained using multiple drugs that are used clinically to treat depression, schizophrenia, anxiety, and other psychiatric or behavioral disorders. During blinded testing the PDE10 inhibitor TP-10 produced a signature of activity suggesting potential antipsychotic activity. This finding is consistent with TP-10’s activity in multiple rodent models that is similar to that of clinically used antipsychotic drugs. The CK1ε inhibitor PF-670462 produced a signature consistent with anxiolytic activity and, at the highest dose tested, behavioral effects similar to that of opiate analgesics. Neither TP-10 nor PF-670462 was included in the training set. Thus, computer vision-based behavioral analysis can facilitate drug discovery by identifying neuropharmacological effects of compounds acting through new mechanisms.

  7. Identifying entry points to improve fertilizer use efficiency in Taihu Basin, China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ma, Li; Feng, S.; Reidsma, P.; Qu, F.; Heerink, N.

    2014-01-01

    Overuse of fertilizers in China causes environmental problems and high costs for farmers. In this paper we aim to identify entry points to improve fertilizer use efficiency in Taihu Basin, China. We use stochastic frontier analysis to estimate the technical and fertilizer use efficiency of rice

  8. Identifying Ant-Mirid Spatial Interactions to Improve Biological Control in Cacao-Based Agroforestry System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagny Beilhe, Leïla; Piou, Cyril; Tadu, Zéphirin; Babin, Régis

    2018-06-06

    The use of ants for biological control of insect pests was the first reported case of conservation biological control. Direct and indirect community interactions between ants and pests lead to differential spatial pattern. We investigated spatial interactions between mirids, the major cocoa pest in West Africa and numerically dominant ant species, using bivariate point pattern analysis to identify potential biological control agents. We assume that potential biological control agents should display negative spatial interactions with mirids considering their niche overlap. The mirid/ant data were collected in complex cacao-based agroforestry systems sampled in three agroecological areas over a forest-savannah gradient in Cameroon. Three species, Crematogaster striatula Emery (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), Crematogaster clariventris Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), and Oecophylla longinoda Latreille (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) with high predator and aggressive behaviors were identified as dominant and showed negative spatial relationships with mirids. The weaver ant, O. longinoda was identified as the only potential biological control agent, considering its ubiquity in the plots, the similarity in niche requirements, and the spatial segregation with mirids resulting probably from exclusion mechanisms. Combining bivariate point pattern analysis to good knowledge of insect ecology was an effective method to identify a potentially good biological control agent.

  9. Social protection: potential for improving HIV outcomes among adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cluver, Lucie D; Hodes, Rebecca J; Sherr, Lorraine; Orkin, F Mark; Meinck, Franziska; Lim Ah Ken, Patricia; Winder-Rossi, Natalia E; Wolfe, Jason; Vicari, Marissa

    2015-01-01

    Advances in biomedical technologies provide potential for adolescent HIV prevention and HIV-positive survival. The UNAIDS 90-90-90 treatment targets provide a new roadmap for ending the HIV epidemic, principally through antiretroviral treatment, HIV testing and viral suppression among people with HIV. However, while imperative, HIV treatment and testing will not be sufficient to address the epidemic among adolescents in Southern and Eastern Africa. In particular, use of condoms and adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) remain haphazard, with evidence that social and structural deprivation is negatively impacting adolescents' capacity to protect themselves and others. This paper examines the evidence for and potential of interventions addressing these structural deprivations. New evidence is emerging around social protection interventions, including cash transfers, parenting support and educational support ("cash, care and classroom"). These interventions have the potential to reduce the social and economic drivers of HIV risk, improve utilization of prevention technologies and improve adherence to ART for adolescent populations in the hyper-endemic settings of Southern and Eastern Africa. Studies show that the integration of social and economic interventions has high acceptability and reach and that it holds powerful potential for improved HIV, health and development outcomes. Social protection is a largely untapped means of reducing HIV-risk behaviours and increasing uptake of and adherence to biomedical prevention and treatment technologies. There is now sufficient evidence to include social protection programming as a key strategy not only to mitigate the negative impacts of the HIV epidemic among families, but also to contribute to HIV prevention among adolescents and potentially to remove social and economic barriers to accessing treatment. We urge a further research and programming agenda: to actively combine programmes that increase availability of

  10. Plant water potential improves prediction of empirical stomatal models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William R L Anderegg

    Full Text Available Climate change is expected to lead to increases in drought frequency and severity, with deleterious effects on many ecosystems. Stomatal responses to changing environmental conditions form the backbone of all ecosystem models, but are based on empirical relationships and are not well-tested during drought conditions. Here, we use a dataset of 34 woody plant species spanning global forest biomes to examine the effect of leaf water potential on stomatal conductance and test the predictive accuracy of three major stomatal models and a recently proposed model. We find that current leaf-level empirical models have consistent biases of over-prediction of stomatal conductance during dry conditions, particularly at low soil water potentials. Furthermore, the recently proposed stomatal conductance model yields increases in predictive capability compared to current models, and with particular improvement during drought conditions. Our results reveal that including stomatal sensitivity to declining water potential and consequent impairment of plant water transport will improve predictions during drought conditions and show that many biomes contain a diversity of plant stomatal strategies that range from risky to conservative stomatal regulation during water stress. Such improvements in stomatal simulation are greatly needed to help unravel and predict the response of ecosystems to future climate extremes.

  11. Identifying Potential Area and Financial Prospects of Rooftop Solar Photovoltaics (PV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarawut Ninsawat

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available In an urban area, the roof is the only available surface that can be utilized for installing solar photovoltaics (PV, and the active surface area depends on the type of roof. Shadows on a solar panel can be caused by nearby tall buildings, construction materials such as water tanks, or the roof configuration itself. The azimuth angle of the sun varies, based on the season and the time of day. Therefore, the simulation of shadow for one or two days or using the rule of thumb may not be sufficient to evaluate shadow effects on solar panels throughout the year. In this paper, a methodology for estimating the solar potential of solar PV on rooftops is presented, which is particularly applicable to urban areas. The objective of this method is to assess how roof type and shadow play a role in potentiality and financial benefit. The method starts with roof type extraction from high-resolution satellite imagery, using Object Base Image Analysis (OBIA, the generation of a 3D structure from height data and roof type, the simulation of shadow throughout the year, and the identification of potential and financial prospects. Based on the results obtained, the system seems to be adequate for calculating the financial benefits of solar PV to a very fine scale. The payback period varied from 7–13 years depending on the roof type, direction, and shadow impact. Based on the potentiality, a homeowner can make a profit of up to 200%. This method could help homeowners to identify potential roof area and economic interest.

  12. Use of multi-criteria decision analysis to identify potentially dangerous glacial lakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kougkoulos, Ioannis; Cook, Simon J; Jomelli, Vincent; Clarke, Leon; Symeonakis, Elias; Dortch, Jason M; Edwards, Laura A; Merad, Myriam

    2018-04-15

    Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) represent a significant threat in deglaciating environments, necessitating the development of GLOF hazard and risk assessment procedures. Here, we outline a Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) approach that can be used to rapidly identify potentially dangerous lakes in regions without existing tailored GLOF risk assessments, where a range of glacial lake types exist, and where field data are sparse or non-existent. Our MCDA model (1) is desk-based and uses freely and widely available data inputs and software, and (2) allows the relative risk posed by a range of glacial lake types to be assessed simultaneously within any region. A review of the factors that influence GLOF risk, combined with the strict rules of criteria selection inherent to MCDA, has allowed us to identify 13 exhaustive, non-redundant, and consistent risk criteria. We use our MCDA model to assess the risk of 16 extant glacial lakes and 6 lakes that have already generated GLOFs, and found that our results agree well with previous studies. For the first time in GLOF risk assessment, we employed sensitivity analyses to test the strength of our model results and assumptions, and to identify lakes that are sensitive to the criteria and risk thresholds used. A key benefit of the MCDA method is that sensitivity analyses are readily undertaken. Overall, these sensitivity analyses lend support to our model, although we suggest that further work is required to determine the relative importance of assessment criteria, and the thresholds that determine the level of risk for each criterion. As a case study, the tested method was then applied to 25 potentially dangerous lakes in the Bolivian Andes, where GLOF risk is poorly understood; 3 lakes are found to pose 'medium' or 'high' risk, and require further detailed investigation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Proteomic Analysis of Saliva Identifies Potential Biomarkers for Orthodontic Tooth Movement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellias, Mohd Faiz; Zainal Ariffin, Shahrul Hisham; Karsani, Saiful Anuar; Abdul Rahman, Mariati; Senafi, Shahidan; Megat Abdul Wahab, Rohaya

    2012-01-01

    Orthodontic treatment has been shown to induce inflammation, followed by bone remodelling in the periodontium. These processes trigger the secretion of various proteins and enzymes into the saliva. This study aims to identify salivary proteins that change in expression during orthodontic tooth movement. These differentially expressed proteins can potentially serve as protein biomarkers for the monitoring of orthodontic treatment and tooth movement. Whole saliva from three healthy female subjects were collected before force application using fixed appliance and at 14 days after 0.014′′ Niti wire was applied. Salivary proteins were resolved using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2DE) over a pH range of 3–10, and the resulting proteome profiles were compared. Differentially expressed protein spots were then identified by MALDI-TOF/TOF tandem mass spectrometry. Nine proteins were found to be differentially expressed; however, only eight were identified by MALDI-TOF/TOF. Four of these proteins—Protein S100-A9, immunoglobulin J chain, Ig alpha-1 chain C region, and CRISP-3—have known roles in inflammation and bone resorption. PMID:22919344

  14. Potentials and policy implications of energy and material efficiency improvement

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Worrell, Ernst; Levine, Mark; Price, Lynn; Martin, Nathan; van den Broek, Richard; Block, Kornelis

    1997-01-01

    There is a growing awareness of the serious problems associated with the provision of sufficient energy to meet human needs and to fuel economic growth world-wide. This has pointed to the need for energy and material efficiency, which would reduce air, water and thermal pollution, as well as waste production. Increasing energy and material efficiency also have the benefits of increased employment, improved balance of imports and exports, increased security of energy supply, and adopting environmentally advantageous energy supply. A large potential exists for energy savings through energy and material efficiency improvements. Technologies are not now, nor will they be, in the foreseeable future, the limiting factors with regard to continuing energy efficiency improvements. There are serious barriers to energy efficiency improvement, including unwillingness to invest, lack of available and accessible information, economic disincentives and organizational barriers. A wide range of policy instruments, as well as innovative approaches have been tried in some countries in order to achieve the desired energy efficiency approaches. These include: regulation and guidelines; economic instruments and incentives; voluntary agreements and actions, information, education and training; and research, development and demonstration. An area that requires particular attention is that of improved international co-operation to develop policy instruments and technologies to meet the needs of developing countries. Material efficiency has not received the attention that it deserves. Consequently, there is a dearth of data on the qualities and quantities for final consumption, thus, making it difficult to formulate policies. Available data, however, suggest that there is a large potential for improved use of many materials in industrialized countries.

  15. Co-expression modules construction by WGCNA and identify potential prognostic markers of uveal melanoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Qi; Tang, Jing; Han, Yu; Wang, Dan

    2018-01-01

    Uveal melanoma is an aggressive cancer which has a high percentage recurrence and with a worse prognosis. Identify the potential prognostic markers of uveal melanoma may provide information for early detection of recurrence and treatment. RNA sequence data of uveal melanoma and patient clinic traits were obtained from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database. Co-expression modules were built by weighted gene co -expression network analysis (WGCNA) and applied to investigate the relationship underlying modules and clinic traits. Besides, functional enrichment analysis was performed on these co-expression genes from interested modules. First, using WGCNA, identified 21 co-expression modules were constructed by the 10975 genes from the 80 human uveal melanoma samples. The number of genes in these modules ranged from 42 to 5091. Found four co -expression modules significantly correlated with three clinic traits (status, recurrence and recurrence Time). Module red, and purple positively correlated with patient's life status and recurrence Time. Module green positively correlates with recurrence. The result of functional enrichment analysis showed that the module magenta was mainly enriched genetic material assemble processes, the purple module was mainly enriched in tissue homeostasis and melanosome membrane and the module red was mainly enriched metastasis of cell, suggesting its critical role in the recurrence and development of the disease. Additionally, identified the hug gene (top connectivity with other genes) in each module. The hub gene SLC17A7, NTRK2, ABTB1 and ADPRHL1 might play a vital role in recurrence of uveal melanoma. Our findings provided the framework of co-expression gene modules of uveal melanoma and identified some prognostic markers might be detection of recurrence and treatment for uveal melanoma. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Potentially preventable infant and child deaths identified at autopsy; findings and implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamber, Andrew R; Mifsud, William; Wolfe, Ingrid; Cass, Hilary; Pryce, Jeremy; Malone, Marian; Sebire, Neil J

    2015-09-01

    The purpose of the study was to determine the proportion of pediatric deaths investigated by HM Coronial autopsy which were potentially preventable deaths due to treatable natural disease, and what implications such findings may have for health policies to reduce their occurrence. A retrospective study of 1779 autopsies of individuals between 7 days and 14 years of age requested by HM Coroner, taking place in one specialist pediatric autopsy center, was undertaken. Cases were included if they involved a definite natural disease process in which appropriate recognition and treatment was likely to have affected their outcome. Strict criteria were used and cases were excluded where the individual had any longstanding condition which might have predisposed them to, or altered the recognition of, acute illness, or its response to therapy. Almost 8% (134/1779) of the study group were potentially preventable deaths as a result of natural disease, the majority occurring in children younger than 2 years of age. Most individuals reported between 1 and 7 days of symptoms before their death, and the majority had sought medical advice during this period, including from general practitioners within working hours, and hospital emergency departments. Of those who had sought medical attention, around one-third had done so more than once (28%, 15/53). Sepsis and pneumonia accounted for the majority of deaths (46 and 34% respectively), with all infections (sepsis, pneumonia and meningitis) accounting for 110/134 (82%). Around 10% of pediatric deaths referred to HM Coroner are potentially preventable, being the result of treatable natural acute illnesses. In many cases medical advice had been sought during the final illness. The results highlight how a review of autopsy data can identify significant findings with the potential to reduce mortality, and the importance of centralized investigation and reporting of pediatric deaths.

  17. Potential Coastal Pumped Hydroelectric Energy Storage Locations Identified using GIS-based Topographic Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, R.; Barnhart, C. J.; Benson, S. M.

    2013-12-01

    Large-scale electrical energy storage could accommodate variable, weather dependent energy resources such as wind and solar. Pumped hydroelectric energy storage (PHS) and compressed energy storage area (CAES) have life cycle energy and financial costs that are an order of magnitude lower than conventional electrochemical storage technologies. However PHS and CAES storage technologies require specific geologic conditions. Conventional PHS requires an upper and lower reservoir separated by at least 100 m of head, but no more than 10 km in horizontal distance. Conventional PHS also impacts fresh water supplies, riparian ecosystems, and hydrologic environments. A PHS facility that uses the ocean as the lower reservoir benefits from a smaller footprint, minimal freshwater impact, and the potential to be located near off shore wind resources and population centers. Although technologically nascent, today one coastal PHS facility exists. The storage potential for coastal PHS is unknown. Can coastal PHS play a significant role in augmenting future power grids with a high faction of renewable energy supply? In this study we employ GIS-based topographic analysis to quantify the coastal PHS potential of several geographic locations, including California, Chile and Peru. We developed automated techniques that seek local topographic minima in 90 m spatial resolution shuttle radar topography mission (SRTM) digital elevation models (DEM) that satisfy the following criteria conducive to PHS: within 10 km from the sea; minimum elevation 150 m; maximum elevation 1000 m. Preliminary results suggest the global potential for coastal PHS could be very significant. For example, in northern Chile we have identified over 60 locations that satisfy the above criteria. Two of these locations could store over 10 million cubic meters of water or several GWh of energy. We plan to report a global database of candidate coastal PHS locations and to estimate their energy storage capacity.

  18. The role and potential of information technology in agricultural improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Milovanović Slavoljub

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The agro-industrial sector in developing countriesis faced with challenges, such as requirement for increase of food production and yield and creation of opportunity for employment of rural and poor population. In addition, the agricultural sector is influenced by global factors and fast changes. These facts indicate that there is great need for information and information technologies (IT, which can be used to cope with the challenges and changes and to improve agricultural production and marketing. However, the potential of IT is not fully utilized in agriculture. Implementation of IT in agricultural sector and rural areas is relatively slow in comparison to the other sectors of the economy where contemporary IT has been implemented at high speed. The aim of the paper is to analyze role, potential and contribution of IT in agribusiness and to explain opportunities for use of IT in many fields of agricultural sector. Our findings are based on economic theory and available literature, and they suggest that IT has great potential for supporting farmers and the other stakeholders in improvement of efficiency, effectiveness and productivity of agriculture. However, the stakeholders have to cope with many limitations and problems in IT implementation and use.

  19. USING GIS TO IDENTIFY POTENTIAL AREAS SUSCEPTIBLE TO FLOOD. CASE STUDY: SOLONEŢ RIVER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. TIPLEA

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Using GIS to Identify Potential Areas Susceptible to Flood. Case Study: Soloneţ River. In this study, we aim to analyze the impact of different peak flows in territory and also a better understanding of the dynamic of a river flow. The methodology used for flood zone delimitation is based on a quantitative analysis model which requires the use of mathematical, physical and statistical operations in order to emphasize the relations between the different variables that were implied (discharges, grain size, terrain morphology, soil saturation, vegetation etc.. The results cannot be expected to be completely accurate but can provide a good representation of the process. Validation of results will inevitably be difficult and should be measured in the field. The information resulting from this study could be useful for raising awareness about both hazards and possible mitigation measure, a key component of disaster risk reduction planning.

  20. Identifying potential sources of Sudan I contamination in Capsicum fruits over its growth period.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Naiying; Gao, Wei; Zhou, Li; Lian, Yunhe; Li, Fengfei; Han, Wenjie

    2015-04-15

    Sudan dyes in spices are often assumed to arise from cross-contamination or malicious addition. Here, experiments were carried out to identify the potential source of Sudan I-IV in Capsicum fruits through investigation of their contents in native Capsicum tissues, soils and associated agronomic materials. Sudan II-IV was not detected in any of the tested samples. Sudan I was found in almost all samples except for the mulching film. Sudan I concentrations decreased from stems to leaves and then to fruits or roots. Sudan I levels in soils were significantly elevated by vegetation treatment. These results exclude the possibility of soil as the main source for Sudan I contamination in Capsicum fruits. Further study found out pesticide and fertilizer constitutes the major source of Sudan I contamination. This work represents a preliminary step for a detailed Sudan I assessment to support Capsicum management and protection in the studied region. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. A new simplex chemometric approach to identify olive oil blends with potentially high traceability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semmar, N; Laroussi-Mezghani, S; Grati-Kamoun, N; Hammami, M; Artaud, J

    2016-10-01

    Olive oil blends (OOBs) are complex matrices combining different cultivars at variable proportions. Although qualitative determinations of OOBs have been subjected to several chemometric works, quantitative evaluations of their contents remain poorly developed because of traceability difficulties concerning co-occurring cultivars. Around this question, we recently published an original simplex approach helping to develop predictive models of the proportions of co-occurring cultivars from chemical profiles of resulting blends (Semmar & Artaud, 2015). Beyond predictive model construction and validation, this paper presents an extension based on prediction errors' analysis to statistically define the blends with the highest predictability among all the possible ones that can be made by mixing cultivars at different proportions. This provides an interesting way to identify a priori labeled commercial products with potentially high traceability taking into account the natural chemical variability of different constitutive cultivars. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Identifying potential maternal genes of Bombyx mori using digital gene expression profiling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Pingzhen

    2018-01-01

    Maternal genes present in mature oocytes play a crucial role in the early development of silkworm. Although maternal genes have been widely studied in many other species, there has been limited research in Bombyx mori. High-throughput next generation sequencing provides a practical method for gene discovery on a genome-wide level. Herein, a transcriptome study was used to identify maternal-related genes from silkworm eggs. Unfertilized eggs from five different stages of early development were used to detect the changing situation of gene expression. The expressed genes showed different patterns over time. Seventy-six maternal genes were annotated according to homology analysis with Drosophila melanogaster. More than half of the differentially expressed maternal genes fell into four expression patterns, while the expression patterns showed a downward trend over time. The functional annotation of these material genes was mainly related to transcription factor activity, growth factor activity, nucleic acid binding, RNA binding, ATP binding, and ion binding. Additionally, twenty-two gene clusters including maternal genes were identified from 18 scaffolds. Altogether, we plotted a profile for the maternal genes of Bombyx mori using a digital gene expression profiling method. This will provide the basis for maternal-specific signature research and improve the understanding of the early development of silkworm. PMID:29462160

  3. Practical In-Depth Analysis of IDS Alerts for Tracing and Identifying Potential Attackers on Darknet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jungsuk Song

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The darknet (i.e., a set of unused IP addresses is a very useful solution for observing the global trends of cyber threats and analyzing attack activities on the Internet. Since the darknet is not connected with real systems, in most cases, the incoming packets on the darknet (‘the darknet traffic’ do not contain a payload. This means that we are unable to get real malware from the darknet traffic. This situation makes it difficult for security experts (e.g., academic researchers, engineers, operators, etc. to identify whether the source hosts of the darknet traffic are infected by real malware or not. In this paper, we present the overall procedure of the in-depth analysis between the darknet traffic and IDS alerts using real data collected at the Science and Technology Cyber Security Center (S&T CSC in Korea and provide the detailed in-depth analysis results. The ultimate goal of this paper is to provide practical experience, insight and know-how to security experts so that they are able to identify and trace the root cause of the darknet traffic. The experimental results show that correlation analysis between the darknet traffic and IDS alerts is very useful to discover potential attack hosts, especially internal hosts, and to find out what kinds of malware infected them.

  4. Exome Sequencing Identifies Potential Risk Variants for Mendelian Disorders at High Prevalence in Qatar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez-Flores, Juan L.; Fakhro, Khalid; Hackett, Neil R.; Salit, Jacqueline; Fuller, Jennifer; Agosto-Perez, Francisco; Gharbiah, Maey; Malek, Joel A.; Zirie, Mahmoud; Jayyousi, Amin; Badii, Ramin; Al-Marri, Ajayeb Al-Nabet; Chouchane, Lotfi; Stadler, Dora J.; Hunter-Zinck, Haley; Mezey, Jason G.; Crystal, Ronald G.

    2013-01-01

    Exome sequencing of families of related individuals has been highly successful in identifying genetic polymorphisms responsible for Mendelian disorders. Here, we demonstrate the value of the reverse approach, where we use exome sequencing of a sample of unrelated individuals to analyze allele frequencies of known causal mutations for Mendelian diseases. We sequenced the exomes of 100 individuals representing the three major genetic subgroups of the Qatari population (Q1 Bedouin, Q2 Persian-South Asian, Q3 African) and identified 37 variants in 33 genes with effects on 36 clinically significant Mendelian diseases. These include variants not present in 1000 Genomes and variants at high frequency when compared to 1000 Genomes populations. Several of these Mendelian variants were only segregating in one Qatari subpopulation, where the observed subpopulation specificity trends were confirmed in an independent population of 386 Qataris. Pre-marital genetic screening in Qatar tests for only 4 out of the 37, such that this study provides a set of Mendelian disease variants with potential impact on the epidemiological profile of the population that could be incorporated into the testing program if further experimental and clinical characterization confirms high penetrance. PMID:24123366

  5. Identifying potential misfit items in cognitive process of learning engineering mathematics based on Rasch model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ataei, Sh; Mahmud, Z; Khalid, M N

    2014-01-01

    The students learning outcomes clarify what students should know and be able to demonstrate after completing their course. So, one of the issues on the process of teaching and learning is how to assess students' learning. This paper describes an application of the dichotomous Rasch measurement model in measuring the cognitive process of engineering students' learning of mathematics. This study provides insights into the perspective of 54 engineering students' cognitive ability in learning Calculus III based on Bloom's Taxonomy on 31 items. The results denote that some of the examination questions are either too difficult or too easy for the majority of the students. This analysis yields FIT statistics which are able to identify if there is data departure from the Rasch theoretical model. The study has identified some potential misfit items based on the measurement of ZSTD where the removal misfit item was accomplished based on the MNSQ outfit of above 1.3 or less than 0.7 logit. Therefore, it is recommended that these items be reviewed or revised to better match the range of students' ability in the respective course.

  6. Application of positive matrix factorization to identify potential sources of PAHs in soil of Dalian, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang Degao; Tian Fulin; Yang Meng; Liu Chenlin; Li Yifan

    2009-01-01

    Soil derived sources of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the region of Dalian, China were investigated using positive matrix factorization (PMF). Three factors were separated based on PMF for the statistical investigation of the datasets both in summer and winter. These factors were dominated by the pattern of single sources or groups of similar sources, showing seasonal and regional variations. The main sources of PAHs in Dalian soil in summer were the emissions from coal combustion average (46%), diesel engine (30%), and gasoline engine (24%). In winter, the main sources were the emissions from coal-fired boiler (72%), traffic average (20%), and gasoline engine (8%). These factors with strong seasonality indicated that coal combustion in winter and traffic exhaust in summer dominated the sources of PAHs in soil. These results suggested that PMF model was a proper approach to identify the sources of PAHs in soil. - PMF model is a proper approach to identify potential sources of PAHs in soil based on the PAH profiles measured in the field and those published in the literature.

  7. The potential of crowdsourcing to improve patient-centered care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiner, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Crowdsourcing (CS) is the outsourcing of a problem or task to a crowd. Although patient-centered care (PCC) may aim to be tailored to an individual's needs, the uses of CS for generating ideas, identifying values, solving problems, facilitating research, and educating an audience represent powerful roles that can shape both allocation of shared resources and delivery of personalized care and treatment. CS can often be conducted quickly and at relatively low cost. Pitfalls include bias, risks of research ethics, inadequate quality of data, inadequate metrics, and observer-expectancy effect. Health professionals and consumers in the US should increase their attention to CS for the benefit of PCC. Patients' participation in CS to shape health policy and decisions is one way to pursue PCC itself and may help to improve clinical outcomes through a better understanding of patients' perspectives. CS should especially be used to traverse the quality-cost curve, or decrease costs while preserving or improving quality of care.

  8. Feasibility Study to Identify Potential Reductions in Energy Use in Tribal Buildings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stevens, Willie [Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, Pablo, MT (United States)

    2017-03-30

    Under this project, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT) assessed the technical and economic feasibility of energy efficiency improvements to existing Tribally-owned buildings. The feasibility study followed a systematic approach in identifying, selecting, and ranking recommended measures, recognizing that the appropriateness of a measure would depend not only on technical issues but also on institutional and organizational issues, such as financing options and occupant requirements. The completed study provided the Tribes with the information needed to commit necessary resources to reduce the energy use and cost in approximately 40 Tribal buildings, including the changes that may be needed in each facility’s operation and maintenance and personnel requirements. It also presented an economic analysis of energy-efficiency capital improvements and an annotated list of financing options and possible funding sources for implementation and an overall strategy for implementation. This project was located in various Tribal communities located throughout the Flathead Indian Reservation in Western Montana. Notice: The following is a compilation of Annual Program Review Presentations, Award Modifications, and Quarterly Progress Reports submitted to the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes under agreement DE-EE0005171. This report covers project activities from September 30, 2011 through December 31, 2014 and has been uploaded to OSTI by DOE as a substitute for the required Final Technical Report which was not received by DOE from the project recipient.

  9. Predicting Fish Growth Potential and Identifying Water Quality Constraints: A Spatially-Explicit Bioenergetics Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budy, Phaedra; Baker, Matthew; Dahle, Samuel K.

    2011-10-01

    Anthropogenic impairment of water bodies represents a global environmental concern, yet few attempts have successfully linked fish performance to thermal habitat suitability and fewer have distinguished co-varying water quality constraints. We interfaced fish bioenergetics, field measurements, and Thermal Remote Imaging to generate a spatially-explicit, high-resolution surface of fish growth potential, and next employed a structured hypothesis to detect relationships among measures of fish performance and co-varying water quality constraints. Our thermal surface of fish performance captured the amount and spatial-temporal arrangement of thermally-suitable habitat for three focal species in an extremely heterogeneous reservoir, but interpretation of this pattern was initially confounded by seasonal covariation of water residence time and water quality. Subsequent path analysis revealed that in terms of seasonal patterns in growth potential, catfish and walleye responded to temperature, positively and negatively, respectively; crappie and walleye responded to eutrophy (negatively). At the high eutrophy levels observed in this system, some desired fishes appear to suffer from excessive cultural eutrophication within the context of elevated temperatures whereas others appear to be largely unaffected or even enhanced. Our overall findings do not lead to the conclusion that this system is degraded by pollution; however, they do highlight the need to use a sensitive focal species in the process of determining allowable nutrient loading and as integrators of habitat suitability across multiple spatial and temporal scales. We provide an integrated approach useful for quantifying fish growth potential and identifying water quality constraints on fish performance at spatial scales appropriate for whole-system management.

  10. Development of a predictive methodology for identifying high radon exhalation potential areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ielsch, G.

    2001-01-01

    Radon 222 is a radioactive natural gas originating from the decay of radium 226 which itself originates from the decay of uranium 23 8 naturally present in rocks and soil. Inhalation of radon gas and its decay products is a potential health risk for man. Radon can accumulate in confined environments such as buildings, and is responsible for one third of the total radiological exposure of the general public to radiation. The problem of how to manage this risk then arises. The main difficulty encountered is due to the large variability of exposure to radon across the country. A prediction needs to be made of areas with the highest density of buildings with high radon levels. Exposure to radon varies depending on the degree of confinement of the habitat, the lifestyle of the occupants and particularly emission of radon from the surface of the soil on which the building is built. The purpose of this thesis is to elaborate a methodology for determining areas presenting a high potential for radon exhalation at the surface of the soil. The methodology adopted is based on quantification of radon exhalation at the surface, starting from a precise characterization of the main local geological and pedological parameters that control the radon source and its transport to the ground/atmosphere interface. The methodology proposed is innovative in that it combines a cartographic analysis, parameters integrated into a Geographic Information system, and a simplified model for vertical transport of radon by diffusion through pores in the soil. This methodology has been validated on two typical areas, in different geological contexts, and gives forecasts that generally agree with field observations. This makes it possible to identify areas with a high exhalation potential within a range of a few square kilometers. (author)

  11. Adaptive Landing Gear: Optimum Control Strategy and Potential for Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grzegorz Mikułowski

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available An adaptive landing gear is a landing gear (LG capable of active adaptation to particular landing conditions by means of controlled hydraulic force. The objective of the adaptive control is to mitigate the peak force transferred to the aircraft structure during touch-down, and thus to limit the structural fatigue factor. This paper investigates the ultimate limits for improvement due to various strategies of active control. Five strategies are proposed and investigated numerically using a~validated model of a real, passive landing gear as a reference. Potential for improvement is estimated statistically in terms of the mean and median (significant peak strut forces as well as in terms of the extended safe sinking velocity range. Three control strategies are verified experimentally using a laboratory test stand.

  12. Child Support; Need to Improve Efforts to Identify Fathers and Obtain Support Orders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-04-01

    34 Reduces the stigma of illegitimacy and helps give the child a sense of identity. • Increases the child’s opportunity to develop a close parental...A179 979 CHILD SUPPORT; NEED TO IMPROVE EFFORTS TO IDENTIFY 1/1 FATHERS AND OBTAIN SUPPORT ORDERS(U) GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WASHINGTON DC HUNAN...April 30, 1987 The Honorable Otis R. Bowen, M.D. The Secretary of Health and Human Services Dear Mr. Secretary: This report discusses child support

  13. Identifying and Improving the image of Vietnam Tourism as a Tourism destination among Finnish tourist

    OpenAIRE

    Pham, Anh

    2012-01-01

    This writing attempts to identify the images of Vietnam as a tourism destination for Finnish tourists and suggests marketing solution for Vietnamese traveling company to improve the images of Vietnam by enhancing marketing activities in the Finnish market. Saigontourist Transportation Corporation (STC), Vietnam which is a commissioner of this thesis project, has provided updated information about the current situation of tourism in Vietnam as well as marketing activities of company durin...

  14. Novel modeling of combinatorial miRNA targeting identifies SNP with potential role in bone density.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Coronnello

    Full Text Available MicroRNAs (miRNAs are post-transcriptional regulators that bind to their target mRNAs through base complementarity. Predicting miRNA targets is a challenging task and various studies showed that existing algorithms suffer from high number of false predictions and low to moderate overlap in their predictions. Until recently, very few algorithms considered the dynamic nature of the interactions, including the effect of less specific interactions, the miRNA expression level, and the effect of combinatorial miRNA binding. Addressing these issues can result in a more accurate miRNA:mRNA modeling with many applications, including efficient miRNA-related SNP evaluation. We present a novel thermodynamic model based on the Fermi-Dirac equation that incorporates miRNA expression in the prediction of target occupancy and we show that it improves the performance of two popular single miRNA target finders. Modeling combinatorial miRNA targeting is a natural extension of this model. Two other algorithms show improved prediction efficiency when combinatorial binding models were considered. ComiR (Combinatorial miRNA targeting, a novel algorithm we developed, incorporates the improved predictions of the four target finders into a single probabilistic score using ensemble learning. Combining target scores of multiple miRNAs using ComiR improves predictions over the naïve method for target combination. ComiR scoring scheme can be used for identification of SNPs affecting miRNA binding. As proof of principle, ComiR identified rs17737058 as disruptive to the miR-488-5p:NCOA1 interaction, which we confirmed in vitro. We also found rs17737058 to be significantly associated with decreased bone mineral density (BMD in two independent cohorts indicating that the miR-488-5p/NCOA1 regulatory axis is likely critical in maintaining BMD in women. With increasing availability of comprehensive high-throughput datasets from patients ComiR is expected to become an essential

  15. Developing tools to identify marginal lands and assess their potential for bioenergy production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galatsidas, Spyridon; Gounaris, Nikolaos; Dimitriadis, Elias; Rettenmaier, Nils; Schmidt, Tobias; Vlachaki, Despoina

    2017-04-01

    The term "marginal land" is currently intertwined in discussions about bioenergy although its definition is neither specific nor firm. The uncertainty arising from marginal land classification and quantification is one of the major constraining factors for its potential use. The clarification of political aims, i.e. "what should be supported?" is also an important constraining factor. Many approaches have been developed to identify marginal lands, based on various definitions according to the management goals. Concerns have been frequently raised regarding the impacts of marginal land use on environment, ecosystem services and sustainability. Current tools of soil quality and land potentials assessment fail to meet the needs of marginal land identification and exploitation for biomass production, due to the lack of comprehensive analysis of interrelated land functions and their quantitative evaluation. Land marginality is determined by dynamic characteristics in many cases and may therefore constitute a transitional state, which requires reassessment in due time. Also, marginal land should not be considered simply a dormant natural resource waiting to be used, since it may already provide multiple benefits and services to society relating to wildlife, biodiversity, carbon sequestration, etc. The consequences of cultivating such lands need to be fully addressed to present a balanced view of their sustainable potential for bioenergy. This framework is the basis for the development of the SEEMLA tools, which aim at supporting the identification, assessment, management of marginal lands in Europe and the decision-making for sustainable biomass production of them using appropriate bioenergy crops. The tools comprise two applications, a web-based one (independent of spatial data) and a GIS-based application (land regionalization on the basis of spatial data), which both incorporate: - Land resource characteristics, restricting the cultivation of agricultural crops but

  16. Nominal group technique: a brainstorming tool for identifying areas to improve pain management in hospitalized patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña, Adolfo; Estrada, Carlos A; Soniat, Debbie; Taylor, Benjamin; Burton, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Pain management in hospitalized patients remains a priority area for improvement; effective strategies for consensus development are needed to prioritize interventions. To identify challenges, barriers, and perspectives of healthcare providers in managing pain among hospitalized patients. Qualitative and quantitative group consensus using a brainstorming technique for quality improvement-the nominal group technique (NGT). One medical, 1 medical-surgical, and 1 surgical hospital unit at a large academic medical center. Nurses, resident physicians, patient care technicians, and unit clerks. Responses and ranking to the NGT question: "What causes uncontrolled pain in your unit?" Twenty-seven health workers generated a total of 94 ideas. The ideas perceived contributing to a suboptimal pain control were grouped as system factors (timeliness, n = 18 ideas; communication, n = 11; pain assessment, n = 8), human factors (knowledge and experience, n = 16; provider bias, n = 8; patient factors, n = 19), and interface of system and human factors (standardization, n = 14). Knowledge, timeliness, provider bias, and patient factors were the top ranked themes. Knowledge and timeliness are considered main priorities to improve pain control. NGT is an efficient tool for identifying general and context-specific priority areas for quality improvement; teams of healthcare providers should consider using NGT to address their own challenges and barriers. Copyright © 2011 Society of Hospital Medicine.

  17. Microfluidic screening and whole-genome sequencing identifies mutations associated with improved protein secretion by yeast

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Huang, Mingtao; Bai, Yunpeng; Sjostrom, Staffan L.

    2015-01-01

    There is an increasing demand for biotech-based production of recombinant proteins for use as pharmaceuticals in the food and feed industry and in industrial applications. Yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is among preferred cell factories for recombinant protein production, and there is increasing...... interest in improving its protein secretion capacity. Due to the complexity of the secretory machinery in eukaryotic cells, it is difficult to apply rational engineering for construction of improved strains. Here we used high-throughput microfluidics for the screening of yeast libraries, generated by UV...... mutagenesis. Several screening and sorting rounds resulted in the selection of eight yeast clones with significantly improved secretion of recombinant a-amylase. Efficient secretion was genetically stable in the selected clones. We performed whole-genome sequencing of the eight clones and identified 330...

  18. Identifying factors for optimal development of health-related websites: a delphi study among experts and potential future users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Francine; van Osch, Liesbeth; de Vries, Hein

    2012-02-14

    The Internet has become a popular medium for offering tailored and targeted health promotion programs to the general public. However, suboptimal levels of program use in the target population limit the public health impact of these programs. Optimizing program development is considered as one of the main processes to increase usage rates. To distinguish factors potentially related to optimal development of health-related websites by involving both experts and potential users. By considering and incorporating the opinions of experts and potential users in the development process, involvement in the program is expected to increase, consequently resulting in increased appreciation, lower levels of attrition, and higher levels of sustained use. We conducted a systematic three-round Delphi study through the Internet. Both national and international experts (from the fields of health promotion, health psychology, e-communication, and technical Web design) and potential users were invited via email to participate. During this study an extensive list of factors potentially related to optimal development of health-related websites was identified, by focusing on factors related to layout, general and risk information provision, questionnaire use, additional services, and ease of use. Furthermore, we assessed the extent to which experts and potential users agreed on the importance of these factors. Differences as well as similarities among experts and potentials users were deduced. In total, 20 of 62 contacted experts participated in the first round (32% response rate); 60 of 200 contacted experts (30% response rate) and 210 potential users (95% response rate) completed the second-round questionnaire, and 32 of 60 contacted experts completed the third round (53% response rate). Results revealed important factors consented upon by experts and potential users (eg, ease of use, clear structure, and detailed health information provision), as well as differences regarding

  19. Cheap and Nasty? The Potential Perils of Using Management Costs to Identify Global Conservation Priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCreless, Erin; Visconti, Piero; Carwardine, Josie; Wilcox, Chris; Smith, Robert J.

    2013-01-01

    The financial cost of biodiversity conservation varies widely around the world and such costs should be considered when identifying countries to best focus conservation investments. Previous global prioritizations have been based on global models for protected area management costs, but this metric may be related to other factors that negatively influence the effectiveness and social impacts of conservation. Here we investigate such relationships and first show that countries with low predicted costs are less politically stable. Local support and capacity can mitigate the impacts of such instability, but we also found that these countries have less civil society involvement in conservation. Therefore, externally funded projects in these countries must rely on government agencies for implementation. This can be problematic, as our analyses show that governments in countries with low predicted costs score poorly on indices of corruption, bureaucratic quality and human rights. Taken together, our results demonstrate that using national-level estimates for protected area management costs to set global conservation priorities is simplistic, as projects in apparently low-cost countries are less likely to succeed and more likely to have negative impacts on people. We identify the need for an improved approach to develop global conservation cost metrics that better capture the true costs of avoiding or overcoming such problems. Critically, conservation scientists must engage with practitioners to better understand and implement context-specific solutions. This approach assumes that measures of conservation costs, like measures of conservation value, are organization specific, and would bring a much-needed focus on reducing the negative impacts of conservation to develop projects that benefit people and biodiversity. PMID:24260502

  20. Cheap and nasty? The potential perils of using management costs to identify global conservation priorities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin McCreless

    Full Text Available The financial cost of biodiversity conservation varies widely around the world and such costs should be considered when identifying countries to best focus conservation investments. Previous global prioritizations have been based on global models for protected area management costs, but this metric may be related to other factors that negatively influence the effectiveness and social impacts of conservation. Here we investigate such relationships and first show that countries with low predicted costs are less politically stable. Local support and capacity can mitigate the impacts of such instability, but we also found that these countries have less civil society involvement in conservation. Therefore, externally funded projects in these countries must rely on government agencies for implementation. This can be problematic, as our analyses show that governments in countries with low predicted costs score poorly on indices of corruption, bureaucratic quality and human rights. Taken together, our results demonstrate that using national-level estimates for protected area management costs to set global conservation priorities is simplistic, as projects in apparently low-cost countries are less likely to succeed and more likely to have negative impacts on people. We identify the need for an improved approach to develop global conservation cost metrics that better capture the true costs of avoiding or overcoming such problems. Critically, conservation scientists must engage with practitioners to better understand and implement context-specific solutions. This approach assumes that measures of conservation costs, like measures of conservation value, are organization specific, and would bring a much-needed focus on reducing the negative impacts of conservation to develop projects that benefit people and biodiversity.

  1. Cheap and nasty? The potential perils of using management costs to identify global conservation priorities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCreless, Erin; Visconti, Piero; Carwardine, Josie; Wilcox, Chris; Smith, Robert J

    2013-01-01

    The financial cost of biodiversity conservation varies widely around the world and such costs should be considered when identifying countries to best focus conservation investments. Previous global prioritizations have been based on global models for protected area management costs, but this metric may be related to other factors that negatively influence the effectiveness and social impacts of conservation. Here we investigate such relationships and first show that countries with low predicted costs are less politically stable. Local support and capacity can mitigate the impacts of such instability, but we also found that these countries have less civil society involvement in conservation. Therefore, externally funded projects in these countries must rely on government agencies for implementation. This can be problematic, as our analyses show that governments in countries with low predicted costs score poorly on indices of corruption, bureaucratic quality and human rights. Taken together, our results demonstrate that using national-level estimates for protected area management costs to set global conservation priorities is simplistic, as projects in apparently low-cost countries are less likely to succeed and more likely to have negative impacts on people. We identify the need for an improved approach to develop global conservation cost metrics that better capture the true costs of avoiding or overcoming such problems. Critically, conservation scientists must engage with practitioners to better understand and implement context-specific solutions. This approach assumes that measures of conservation costs, like measures of conservation value, are organization specific, and would bring a much-needed focus on reducing the negative impacts of conservation to develop projects that benefit people and biodiversity.

  2. Visual Indicators on Vaccine Boxes as Early Warning Tools to Identify Potential Freeze Damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angoff, Ronald; Wood, Jillian; Chernock, Maria C; Tipping, Diane

    2015-07-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether the use of visual freeze indicators on vaccines would assist health care providers in identifying vaccines that may have been exposed to potentially damaging temperatures. Twenty-seven sites in Connecticut involved in the Vaccine for Children Program participated. In addition to standard procedures, visual freeze indicators (FREEZEmarker ® L; Temptime Corporation, Morris Plains, NJ) were affixed to each box of vaccine that required refrigeration but must not be frozen. Temperatures were monitored twice daily. During the 24 weeks, all 27 sites experienced triggered visual freeze indicator events in 40 of the 45 refrigerators. A total of 66 triggered freeze indicator events occurred in all 4 types of refrigerators used. Only 1 of the freeze events was identified by a temperature-monitoring device. Temperatures recorded on vaccine data logs before freeze indicator events were within the 35°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C) range in all but 1 instance. A total of 46,954 doses of freeze-sensitive vaccine were stored at the time of a visual freeze indicator event. Triggered visual freeze indicators were found on boxes containing 6566 doses (14.0% of total doses). Of all doses stored, 14,323 doses (30.5%) were of highly freeze-sensitive vaccine; 1789 of these doses (12.5%) had triggered indicators on the boxes. Visual freeze indicators are useful in the early identification of freeze events involving vaccines. Consideration should be given to including these devices as a component of the temperature-monitoring system for vaccines.

  3. Medication abortion: Potential for improved patient access through pharmacies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raifman, Sarah; Orlando, Megan; Rafie, Sally; Grossman, Daniel

    2018-05-08

    To discuss the potential for improving access to early abortion care through pharmacies in the United States. Despite the growing use of medications to induce termination of early pregnancy, pharmacist involvement in abortion care is currently limited. The Food and Drug Administration's Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) for Mifeprex® (mifepristone 200 mg), the principal drug used in early medication abortion, prohibits the dispensing of the drug by prescription at pharmacies. This commentary reviews the pharmacology of medication abortion with the use of mifepristone and misoprostol, as well as aspects of service delivery and data on safety, efficacy, and acceptability. Given its safety record, mifepristone no longer fits the profile of a drug that requires an REMS. The recent implementation of pharmacy dispensing of mifepristone in community pharmacies in Australia and some provinces of Canada has improved access to medication abortion by increasing the number of medication abortion providers, particularly in rural areas. Provision of mifepristone in pharmacies, which involves dispensing and patient counseling, would likely improve access to early abortion in the United States without increasing risks to women. Copyright © 2018 American Pharmacists Association®. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Identifying potential environmental impacts of waste handling strategies in textile industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yacout, Dalia M M; Hassouna, M S

    2016-08-01

    Waste management is a successful instrument to minimize generated waste and improve environmental conditions. In spite of the large share of developing countries in the textile industry, limited information is available concerning the waste management strategies implemented for textiles on those countries and their environmental impacts. In the current study, two waste management approaches for hazardous solid waste treatment of acrylic fibers (landfill and incineration) were investigated. The main research questions were: What are the different impacts of each waste management strategy? Which waste management strategy is more ecofriendly? Life cycle assessment was employed in order to model the environmental impacts of each waste streaming approach separately then compare them together. Results revealed that incineration was the more ecofriendly approach. Highest impacts of both approaches were on ecotoxicity and carcinogenic potentials due to release of metals from pigment wastes. Landfill had an impact of 46.8 % on human health as compared to 28 % by incineration. Incineration impact on ecosystem quality was higher than landfill impact (68.4 and 51.3 %, respectively). As for resources category, incineration had a higher impact than landfill (3.5 and 2.0 %, respectively). Those impacts could be mitigated if state-of-the-art landfill or incinerator were used and could be reduced by applying waste to energy approaches for both management systems In conclusion, shifting waste treatment from landfill to incineration would decrease the overall environmental impacts and allow energy recovery. The potential of waste to energy approach by incineration with heat recovery could be considered in further studies. Future research is needed in order to assess the implementation of waste management systems and the preferable waste management strategies in the textile industry on developing countries.

  5. 3D geostatistical modelling for identifying sinkhole disaster potential zones around the Verkhnekamskoye potash deposit (Russia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royer, J. J.; Litaudon, J.; Filippov, L. O.; Lyubimova, T.; Maximovich, N.

    2017-07-01

    This work results from a cooperative scientific program between the Perm State University (Russia) and the University of Lorraine (France). Its objectives are to integrate modern 3D geomodeling in order to improve sustainable mining extraction, especially for predicting and avoiding the formation of sinkholes disaster potential zones. Systematic exploration drill holes performed in the Verkhnekamskoye potash deposit (Perm region, Russia) have been used to build a comprehensive 3D model for better understanding the spatial repartition of the ore quality (geometallurgy). A precise modelling of the mineralized layers allows an estimation of the in-situ ore reserves after interpolating by kriging the potassium (K) and magnesium (Mg) contents at the node of a regular centred grid (over a million cells). Total resources in potassium vary according to the cut-off between 4.7Gt @ 16.1 % K2O; 0.32 % MgCl2 for a cut-off grade at 13.1% K2O and 2.06 Gt @ 18.2 % K2O; 0.32 % MgCl2 at a cut-off of 16.5% K2O. Most of reserves are located in the KPI, KPII and KPIII layers, the KPI being the richest, and KPIII the largest in terms of tonnage. A systematic study of the curvature calculated along the roof of the mineralized layers points out the location of potential main faults which play a major role in the formation of sinkhole during exploitation. A risk map is then derived from this attribute.

  6. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart Jj of... - List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 10 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry 5 Table 5 to Subpart JJ of Part 63 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION.... 63, Subpt. JJ, Table 5 Table 5 to Subpart JJ of Part 63—List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified...

  7. Genome-Wide Analysis to Identify HLA Factors Potentially Associated With Severe Dengue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sudheer Gupta

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The pathogenesis of dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF, following dengue virus (DENV infection, is a complex and poorly understood phenomenon. In view of the clinical need of identifying patients with higher likelihood of developing this severe outcome, we undertook a comparative genome-wide association analysis of epitope variants from sequences available in the ViPR database that have been reported to be differentially related to dengue fever and DHF. Having enumerated the incriminated epitope variants, we determined the corresponding HLA alleles in the context of which DENV infection could potentially precipitate DHF. Our analysis considered the development of DHF in three different perspectives: (a as a consequence of primary DENV infection, (b following secondary DENV infection with a heterologous serotype, (c as a result of DENV infection following infection with related flaviviruses like Zika virus, Japanese Encephalitis virus, West Nile virus, etc. Subject to experimental validation, these viral and host markers would be valuable in triaging DENV-infected patients for closer supervision owing to the relatively higher risk of poor prognostic outcome and also for the judicious allocation of scarce institutional resources during large outbreaks.

  8. New approaches for identifying and testing potential new anti-asthma agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Licari, Amelia; Castagnoli, Riccardo; Brambilla, Ilaria; Marseglia, Alessia; Tosca, Maria Angela; Marseglia, Gian Luigi; Ciprandi, Giorgio

    2018-01-01

    Asthma is a chronic disease with significant heterogeneity in clinical features, disease severity, pattern of underlying disease mechanisms, and responsiveness to specific treatments. While the majority of asthmatic patients are controlled by standard pharmacological strategies, a significant subgroup has limited therapeutic options representing a major unmet need. Ongoing asthma research aims to better characterize distinct clinical phenotypes, molecular endotypes, associated reliable biomarkers, and also to develop a series of new effective targeted treatment modalities. Areas covered: The expanding knowledge on the pathogenetic mechanisms of asthma has allowed researchers to investigate a range of new treatment options matched to patient profiles. The aim of this review is to provide a comprehensive and updated overview of the currently available, new and developing approaches for identifying and testing potential treatment options for asthma management. Expert opinion: Future therapeutic strategies for asthma require the identification of reliable biomarkers that can help with diagnosis and endotyping, in order to determine the most effective drug for the right patient phenotype. Furthermore, in addition to the identification of clinical and inflammatory phenotypes, it is expected that a better understanding of the mechanisms of airway remodeling will likely optimize asthma targeted treatment.

  9. Identifying areas under potential risk of illegal construction and demolition waste dumping using GIS tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seror, Nissim; Portnov, Boris A

    2018-05-01

    Construction and demolition (C&D) waste, dumped illegally in ravines and open areas, contaminates soil and can cause underground water pollution and forests fires. Yet, effective monitoring of illegal C&D waste dumping and enforcing legislation against the offenders are often a difficult task due to the large size of geographic areas that need to be monitored, and limited human and financial resources available to environmental law enforcement agencies. In this study, we use Geographic Information System (GIS) tools and geo-statistical modelling to identify the areas under potentially elevated risk of illegal C&D waste dumping in the Haifa district of Israel. As our analysis shows, locational factors, significantly associated with the accumulated amount of waste in the existing illegal C&D waste sites, include: distance to the nearest main road, depth of the ravine present at the site (pwaste dumping for future monitoring. As we suggest, the proposed approach may be useful for environmental law enforcement authorities, by helping them to focus on specific sites for inspection, save resources, and act against the offenders more efficiently. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. RNAi phenotype profiling of kinases identifies potential therapeutic targets in Ewing's sarcoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arora, Shilpi; Gonzales, Irma M; Hagelstrom, R Tanner; Beaudry, Christian; Choudhary, Ashish; Sima, Chao; Tibes, Raoul; Mousses, Spyro; Azorsa, David O

    2010-08-18

    Ewing's sarcomas are aggressive musculoskeletal tumors occurring most frequently in the long and flat bones as a solitary lesion mostly during the teen-age years of life. With current treatments, significant number of patients relapse and survival is poor for those with metastatic disease. As part of novel target discovery in Ewing's sarcoma, we applied RNAi mediated phenotypic profiling to identify kinase targets involved in growth and survival of Ewing's sarcoma cells. Four Ewing's sarcoma cell lines TC-32, TC-71, SK-ES-1 and RD-ES were tested in high throughput-RNAi screens using a siRNA library targeting 572 kinases. Knockdown of 25 siRNAs reduced the growth of all four Ewing's sarcoma cell lines in replicate screens. Of these, 16 siRNA were specific and reduced proliferation of Ewing's sarcoma cells as compared to normal fibroblasts. Secondary validation and preliminary mechanistic studies highlighted the kinases STK10 and TNK2 as having important roles in growth and survival of Ewing's sarcoma cells. Furthermore, knockdown of STK10 and TNK2 by siRNA showed increased apoptosis. In summary, RNAi-based phenotypic profiling proved to be a powerful gene target discovery strategy, leading to successful identification and validation of STK10 and TNK2 as two novel potential therapeutic targets for Ewing's sarcoma.

  11. Identifying Potential Areas of Human Zika Infection in the City of Los Angeles, California by Use of Remote Sensing Imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, J.

    2017-12-01

    As of April 2017, California is the third most prevalent state on the United States for Zika Infection and Southern California has an ever growing population of Aedes mosquitos. Zika is a disease which poses a significant risk to humans and other mammals due to its effects on pregnancy. This emerging disease is highly contagious due to its spread of infection primarily by Aedes aegypti mosquitos. Aedes mosquitos are able to breed in small rain collecting containers which allow the species to persevere in urban and semi urban environments. We hope to identify potential areas with risk of human infection within Los Angeles and its surrounding areas. This study integrates remote sensing, GIS, statistical, and environmental techniques to study favorable habitats for this particular species of mosquitos and their larvae. The study of the geographic and landscape factors which promote the larvae development allow for the disease spread to be analyzed and modeled. There are several goals in the development of this study. These include the coordination of statistical data with local epidemiology departments, identify workflows to improve efficiency, create models which can be utilized for disease prevention, and identify geographic risk factors for the spread of Zika.

  12. Potential of mutation breeding in improving Indonesian local rice varieties

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sobrizal

    2016-01-01

    Rice (Oryza sativa L.) is an important cereal crops for human nutrition, this species can be divided into sub-species i.e. Indica and Japonica. Japonica sub-species consists of Temprate and Tropical Japonica (it is called as Javanica) groups. Mostly Javanica group originated from Indonesia, the people mentioned as Indonesian local varieties, it was covering more than 8000 varieties. This paper aims is to discuss the potential of mutation breeding, success stories and on going activities improved genetically the local rice varieties. Indonesian local varieties have been tested naturally for resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses so that they become useful collections of genetic resources. They usually adapted well toa specific environment where they grow largely, having good aroma and eating quality, but they have some weakness such very long growth duration, susceptible to lodging, unresponsive to fertilizer, and low yield. Seed multiplication is usually conducted by collecting seeds from farmer's fields so that the seed quality, especially for seeds purity level is very low. Improvements of seed quality is usually conducted through purification of exciting varieties, then, the result is released as a new variety. Other ways, some new varieties were improved through mutation breeding, for example, an early maturing mutant variety of Pandan Putri derived from irradiated Pandan Wangi variety from Cianjur area. The success story to reduce harvest age of Pandan Wangi variety through mutation breeding, it was triggers other local governments to use nuclear technology in improving agronomic traits of their local rice varieties, without altered another good characters. (author)

  13. Identifying the Potential for Robotics to Assist Older Adults in Different Living Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitzner, Tracy L.; Chen, Tiffany L.; Kemp, Charles C.; Rogers, Wendy A.

    2014-01-01

    As the older adult population grows and becomes more diverse, so will their needs and preferences for living environments. Many adults over 65 years of age require some assistance [1, 2]; yet it is important for their feelings of well-being that the assistance not restrict their autonomy [3]. Not only is autonomy correlated with quality of life [4], autonomy enhancement may improve functionality [2, 5]. The goal of this paper is to provide guidance for the development of technology to enhance autonomy and quality of life for older adults. We explore the potential for robotics to meet these needs. We evaluated older adults' diverse living situations and the predictors of residential moves to higher levels of care in the United States. We also examined older adults' needs for assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs), and medical conditions when living independently or in a long-term care residence. By providing support for older adults, mobile manipulator robots may reduce need-driven, undesired moves from residences with lower levels of care (i.e., private homes, assisted living) to those with higher levels of care (i.e., skilled nursing). PMID:24729800

  14. Crossing the Barriers: An Analysis of Land Access Barriers to Geothermal Development and Potential Improvement Scenarios

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Levine, Aaron L [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Young, Katherine R [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)

    2017-10-04

    Developers have identified many non-technical barriers to geothermal power development, including access to land. Activities required for accessing land, such as environmental review and private and public leasing can take a considerable amount of time and can delay or prevent project development. This paper discusses the impacts to available geothermal resources and deployment caused by land access challenges, including tribal and cultural resources, environmentally sensitive areas, biological resources, land ownership, federal and state lease queues, and proximity to military installations. In this analysis, we identified challenges that have the potential to prevent development of identified and undiscovered hydrothermal geothermal resources. We found that an estimated 400 MW of identified geothermal resource potential and 4,000 MW of undiscovered geothermal resource potential were either unallowed for development or contained one or more significant barriers that could prevent development at the site. Potential improvement scenarios that could be employed to overcome these barriers include (1) providing continuous funding to the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) for processing geothermal leases and permit applications and (2) the creation of advanced environmental mitigation measures. The model results forecast that continuous funding to the USFS could result in deployment of an additional 80 MW of geothermal capacity by 2030 and 124 MW of geothermal capacity by 2050 when compared to the business-as-usual scenario. The creation of advanced environmental mitigation measures coupled with continuous funding to the USFS could result in deployment of an additional 97 MW of geothermal capacity by 2030 and 152 MW of geothermal capacity by 2050 when compared to the business-as-usual scenario. The small impact on potential deployment in these improvement scenarios suggests that these 4,400 MW have other barriers to development in addition to land access. In other words, simply

  15. An assessment of BWR [boiling water reactor] Mark III containment challenges, failure modes, and potential improvements in performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schroeder, J.A.; Pafford, D.J.; Kelly, D.L.; Jones, K.R.; Dallman, F.J.

    1991-01-01

    This report describes risk-significant challenges posed to Mark III containment systems by severe accidents as identified for Grand Gulf. Design similarities and differences between the Mark III plants that are important to containment performance are summarized. The accident sequences responsible for the challenges and the postulated containment failure modes associated with each challenge are identified and described. Improvements are discussed that have the potential either to prevent or delay containment failure, or to mitigate the offsite consequences of a fission product release. For each of these potential improvements, a qualitative analysis is provided. A limited quantitative risk analysis is provided for selected potential improvements. 21 refs., 5 figs., 46 tabs

  16. Identifying non-technical skills and barriers for improvement of teamwork in cardiac arrest teams

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, P.O.; Jensen, Michael Kammer; Lippert, A.

    2010-01-01

    Background: The application of non-technical skills (NTSs) in health care has previously been described in other health-care educational programmes. NTSs are behavioural principles such as leadership, task distribution and communication. The aim of this study was to identify NTSs suitable...... for improving team performance in multi-professional cardiac arrest teams, and to describe barriers to the use and implementation of such NTSs by using a qualitative method. Methods: Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with 11 Danish Advanced Life Support instructors during the period April...... 2006 to November 2006. Interviews were focussed on barriers and recommendations for teamwork in the cardiac arrest team, optimal policy for improvement of resuscitation training and clinical practice, use of cognitive aids and adoption of European Resuscitation Council (ERC) Guidelines 2005. Interviews...

  17. Enterococcus phages as potential tool for identifying sewage inputs in the Great Lakes region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vijayavel, K.; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara N.; Whitman, Richard L.; Ebdon, J.; Taylor, H.; Kashian, D.R.

    2014-01-01

    Bacteriophages are viruses living in bacteria that can be used as a tool to detect fecal contamination in surface waters around the world. However, the lack of a universal host strain makes them unsuitable for tracking fecal sources. We evaluated the suitability of two newly isolated Enterococcus host strains (ENT-49 and ENT-55) capable for identifying sewage contamination in impacted waters by targeting phages specific to these hosts. Both host strains were isolated from wastewater samples and identified as E. faecium by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Occurrence of Enterococcus phages was evaluated in sewage samples (n = 15) from five wastewater treatment plants and in fecal samples from twenty-two species of wild and domesticated animals (individual samples; n = 22). Levels of Enterococcus phages, F + coliphages, Escherichia coli and enterococci were examined from four rivers, four beaches, and three harbors. Enterococcus phages enumeration was at similar levels (Mean = 6.72 Log PFU/100 mL) to F + coliphages in all wastewater samples, but were absent from all non-human fecal sources tested. The phages infecting Enterococcus spp. and F + coliphages were not detected in the river samples (detection threshold < 10 PFU/100 mL), but were present in the beach and harbor samples (range = 1.83 to 2.86 Log PFU/100 mL). Slightly higher concentrations (range = 3.22 to 3.69 Log MPN/100 mL) of E. coli and enterococci when compared to F + coliphages and Enterococcus phages, were observed in the river, beach and harbor samples. Our findings suggest that the bacteriophages associated with these particular Enterococcus host strains offer potentially sensitive and human-source specific indicators of enteric pathogen risk.

  18. Potential of biofertilisers to improve performance of local genotype tomatoes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmen Puia

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Complex microbial communities in the plant rhizosphere are responsible for their success in ecosystems. Supplementary inoculation of soil with mycorrhizal fungi and rhizospheric bacteria may act as a plant growth-promoting factor. The present study aims to assess the potential use of biofertilisers on tomato as a way of increasing yield and stability of root exploration area. The experiment was set up in greenhouse, regarding the evaluation of growing dynamics of plants, mycorrhization level and obtained yield. The identification of effective inoculation variants can lead to a standardisation of technologies of growing for local plant genotypes. Data analysis was performed based on the ANOVA test, followed by Tukey HSD, principal component analysis and cluster analysis in order to identify the potential of bioproducts to stimulate the development of tomato plants. Application of bacterial biofertilisers does not stimulate enough the aboveground development of plants. An antagonistic reaction is visible between exogenous mycorrhizas and those specific in soil, acting slightly different for each genotype. Mycorrhizal level in root systems is more dependent on applied biofertilisers than on analyzed genotypes. For the variants without additional fertilisers, a high level of mycorrhization is visible only after 75 days from the transplantation. Based on results we can conclude that microbial active fertilisers may represent viable solutions to increase yield capacity and root exploration area for local tomato genotypes.

  19. Defense Acquisitions: Antiarmor Munitions Master Plan Does Not Identify Potential Excesses or Support Planned Procurements

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    2000-01-01

    .... According to the report, the plan should identify the projected armored threat and the projected quantity of all antiarmor weapons, whether fielded or in development, with the purpose of identifying...

  20. Low intensity exercise training improves skeletal muscle regeneration potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiziana ePietrangelo

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: The aim of this study was to determine whether 12 days of low-to-moderate exercise training at low altitude (598 m a.s.l. improves skeletal muscle regeneration in sedentary adult women.Methods: Satellite cells were obtained from the vastus lateralis skeletal muscle of seven women before and after this exercise training at low altitude. They were investigated for differentiation aspects, superoxide anion production, antioxidant enzymes, mitochondrial potential variation after a depolarizing insult, intracellular Ca2+ concentrations, and micro (miRNA expression (miR-1, miR-133, miR-206.Results: In these myogenic populations of adult stem cells, those obtained after exercise training, showed increased Fusion Index and intracellular Ca2+ concentrations. This exercise training also generally reduced superoxide anion production in cells (by 12% to 67%, although not in two women, where there was an increase of ~15% along with a reduced superoxide dismutase activity. miRNA expression showed an exercise-induced epigenetic transcription profile that was specific according to the reduced or increased superoxide anion production of the cells. Conclusions: The present study shows that low-to-moderate exercise training at low altitude improves the regenerative capacity of skeletal muscle in adult women. The differentiation of cells was favored by increased intracellular calcium concentration and increased the fusion index. This low-to-moderate training at low altitude also depicted the epigenetic signature of cells.

  1. Improving drug policy: The potential of broader democratic participation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritter, Alison; Lancaster, Kari; Diprose, Rosalyn

    2018-05-01

    Policies concerned with illicit drugs vex governments. While the 'evidence-based policy' paradigm argues that governments should be informed by 'what works', in practice policy makers rarely operate this way. Moreover the evidence-based policy paradigm fails to account for democratic participatory processes, particularly how community members and people who use drugs might be included. The aim of this paper is to explore the political science thinking about democratic participation and the potential afforded in 'deliberative democracy' approaches, such as Citizens Juries and other mini-publics for improved drug policy processes. Deliberative democracy, through its focus on inclusion, equality and reasoned discussion, shows potential for drug policy reform and shifts the focus from reliance on and privileging of experts and scientific evidence. But the very nature of this kind of 'deliberation' may delimit participation, notably through its insistence on authorised modes of communication. Other forms of participation beyond reasoned deliberation aligned with the ontological view that participatory processes themselves are constitutive of subject positions and policy problems, may generate opportunities for considering how the deleterious effects of authorised modes of communication might be overcome. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. The RG-improved Twin Higgs effective potential at NNLL

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Greco, Davide; Mimouni, Kin [Institut de Théorie des Phénomènes Physiques, EPFL,Route de la Sorge, Lausanne, CH-1015 (Switzerland)

    2016-11-18

    We present the Renormalization Group improvement of the Twin Higgs effective potential at cubic order in logarithmic accuracy. We first introduce a model-independent low-energy effective Lagrangian that captures both the pseudo-Nambu-Goldstone boson nature of the Higgs field and the twin light degrees of freedom charged under a copy of the Standard Model. We then apply the background field method to systematically re-sum all the one loop diagrams contributing to the potential. We show how this technique can be efficient to implicitly renormalize the higher-dimensional operators in the twin sector without classifying all of them. A prediction for the Higgs mass in the Twin Higgs model is derived and found to be of the order of M{sub H}∼120 GeV with an ultraviolet cut-off m{sub ∗}∼10–20 TeV. Irrespective of any possible ultraviolet completion of the low-energy Lagrangian, the infrared degrees of freedom alone are therefore enough to account for the observed value of the Higgs mass through running effects.

  3. Multi-temporal terrestrial laser scanning for identifying rockslide modifications: potentialities and problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castagnetti, Cristina; Bertacchini, Eleonora; Capra, Alessandro; Rivola, Riccardo

    2013-04-01

    The heart of this research is to provide an efficient methodology for a reliable acquisition and interpretation of Terrestrial Laser Scanner (TLS) data in the application field of landslide monitoring. In particular, rockslides, which are characterized by vertical walls of rock and by a complex morphology, are of great concern in the study. In these cases the airborne laser scanning is not able to provide useful and reliable description and the terrestrial laser scanning might be the only possible choice to obtain a good and reliable description of the geomorphology or to identify the changes occurred over time. The last purpose is still a challenging task when long distances are involved because the accurate and punctual identification of displacements is not possible due to the laser beam divergence. The final purpose of the research is a proposal of a methodology which is based on TLS technology for identifying displacements and extracting geomorphological changes. The approach is clearly based on a multi-temporal analysis which is computed on several repetitions of TLS surveys performed on the area of interest. To achieve best results and optimize the processing strategy, different methods about point clouds alignment have been tested together with algorithms both for filtering and post-processing. The case study is the Collagna Landslide that is located in the North Appennines (Reggio Emilia, Italy) on the right flank of Biola torrent. The large scale composite landslide area is made both by a wide rock slide sector and a more limited earth slide sector that, after high precipitation rates, disrupted the National Road 63 in December 2008. An integrated monitoring system is installed since 2009 and comprises both point-based technologies such as extensometers, total station and global positioning system, and also area-based technologies such as airborne laser scanner, long-range TLS and ground-based radar. This choice allows to couple the advantages of both

  4. A spatial modeling approach to identify potential butternut restoration sites in Mammoth Cave National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, L.M.; Van Manen, F.T.; Schlarbaum, S.E.; DePoy, M.

    2006-01-01

    Incorporation of disease resistance is nearly complete for several important North American hardwood species threatened by exotic fungal diseases. The next important step toward species restoration would be to develop reliable tools to delineate ideal restoration sites on a landscape scale. We integrated spatial modeling and remote sensing techniques to delineate potential restoration sites for Butternut (Juglans cinerea L.) trees, a hardwood species being decimated by an exotic fungus, in Mammoth Cave National Park (MCNP), Kentucky. We first developed a multivariate habitat model to determine optimum Butternut habitats within MCNP. Habitat characteristics of 54 known Butternut locations were used in combination with eight topographic and land use data layers to calculate an index of habitat suitability based on Mahalanobis distance (D2). We used a bootstrapping technique to test the reliability of model predictions. Based on a threshold value for the D2 statistic, 75.9% of the Butternut locations were correctly classified, indicating that the habitat model performed well. Because Butternut seedlings require extensive amounts of sunlight to become established, we used canopy cover data to refine our delineation of favorable areas for Butternut restoration. Areas with the most favorable conditions to establish Butternut seedlings were limited to 291.6 ha. Our study provides a useful reference on the amount and location of favorable Butternut habitat in MCNP and can be used to identify priority areas for future Butternut restoration. Given the availability of relevant habitat layers and accurate location records, our approach can be applied to other tree species and areas. ?? 2006 Society for Ecological Restoration International.

  5. Improved mortality searches for Ontario miners using social insurance index identifiers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fair, M.E.; Newcombe, H.B.; Lalonde, P.

    1988-02-01

    The immediate purpose of the present use of the Social Insurance Number (SIN) index file is to facilitate the death searches pertaining to Ontario miners, including uranium miners. The SIN records contain accurate versions of the personal identifiers such as names and birth dates, whereas these are often incompletely or incorrectly recorded on the available work records such as those of the Workers' Compensation Board (WCB). The results show that use of the SIN identifiers considerably increases the accuracy of the death searches. Both the false positive and the false negative outcomes from these searches are reduced in number. This is true when the SIN identifiers are employed alone, and even more so when they are used in combination with the WCB identifiers. Moreover, the manual resolutions of the remaining difficult or ambiguous matches are greatly facilitated, in part because of the lessened resemblance between competing death links. The results are applicable to future studies of the mortality experience of occupational cohorts, including the Newfoundland fluorspar miners and persons enrolled in the National Dose Registry. The improvement will be most marked where SIN registrations for recent years are employed, i.e. following introduction of a requirement to provide birth certificate with the SIN application forms. As a by-product of the study it has been possible to investigate quantitatively, for the first time, the effect on accuracy of the death searches when various components of the full names, birth dates and such are deleted from the search records. These effects are substantial, and they emphasize further the value of having identifiers of high quality available for any mortality follow-up

  6. Human Plasma Metabolomics Study across All Stages of Age-Related Macular Degeneration Identifies Potential Lipid Biomarkers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laíns, Inês; Kelly, Rachel S; Miller, John B; Silva, Rufino; Vavvas, Demetrios G; Kim, Ivana K; Murta, Joaquim N; Lasky-Su, Jessica; Miller, Joan W; Husain, Deeba

    2018-02-01

    that the most significant metabolites map to the glycerophospholipid pathway. These findings have the potential to improve our understanding of AMD pathogenesis, to support the development of plasma-based metabolomics biomarkers of AMD, and to identify novel targets for treatment of this blinding disease. Copyright © 2017 American Academy of Ophthalmology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Identifying an Inciting Antigen Is Associated With Improved Survival in Patients With Chronic Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swigris, Jeffrey J.; Forssén, Anna V.; Tourin, Olga; Solomon, Joshua J.; Huie, Tristan J.; Olson, Amy L.; Brown, Kevin K.

    2013-01-01

    Background: The cornerstone of hypersensitivity pneumonitis (HP) management is having patients avoid the inciting antigen (IA). Often, despite an exhaustive search, an IA cannot be found. The objective of this study was to examine whether identifying the IA impacts survival in patients with chronic HP. Methods: We used the Kaplan-Meier method to display, and the log-rank test to compare, survival curves of patients with well-characterized chronic HP stratified on identification of an IA exposure. A Cox proportional hazards (PH) model was used to identify independent predictors in time-to-death analysis. Results: Of 142 patients, 67 (47%) had an identified IA, and 75 (53%) had an unidentified IA. Compared with survivors, patients who died (n = 80, 56%) were older, more likely to have smoked, had lower total lung capacity % predicted and FVC % predicted, had higher severity of dyspnea, were more likely to have pulmonary fibrosis, and were less likely to have an identifiable IA. In a Cox PH model, the inability to identify an IA (hazard ratio [HR], 1.76; 95% CI, 1.01-3.07), older age (HR, 1.04; 95% CI, 1.01-1.07), the presences of pulmonary fibrosis (HR, 2.43; 95% CI, 1.36-4.35), a lower FVC% (HR, 1.36; 95% CI, 1.10-1.68), and a history of smoking (HR, 2.01; 95% C1, 1.15-3.50) were independent predictors of shorter survival. After adjusting for mean age, presence of fibrosis, mean FVC%, mean diffusing capacity of the lung for carbon monoxide (%), and history of smoking, survival was longer for patients with an identified IA exposure than those with an unidentified IA exposure (median, 8.75 years vs 4.88 years; P = .047). Conclusions: Among patients with chronic HP, when adjusting for a number of potentially influential predictors, including the presence of fibrosis, the inability to identify an IA was independently associated with shortened survival. PMID:23828161

  8. The hepatitis C cascade of care: identifying priorities to improve clinical outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linas, Benjamin P; Barter, Devra M; Leff, Jared A; Assoumou, Sabrina A; Salomon, Joshua A; Weinstein, Milton C; Kim, Arthur Y; Schackman, Bruce R

    2014-01-01

    As highly effective hepatitis C virus (HCV) therapies emerge, data are needed to inform the development of interventions to improve HCV treatment rates. We used simulation modeling to estimate the impact of loss to follow-up on HCV treatment outcomes and to identify intervention strategies likely to provide good value for the resources invested in them. We used a Monte Carlo state-transition model to simulate a hypothetical cohort of chronically HCV-infected individuals recently screened positive for serum HCV antibody. We simulated four hypothetical intervention strategies (linkage to care; treatment initiation; integrated case management; peer navigator) to improve HCV treatment rates, varying efficacies and costs, and identified strategies that would most likely result in the best value for the resources required for implementation. Sustained virologic responses (SVRs), life expectancy, quality-adjusted life expectancy (QALE), costs from health system and program implementation perspectives, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs). We estimate that imperfect follow-up reduces the real-world effectiveness of HCV therapies by approximately 75%. In the base case, a modestly effective hypothetical peer navigator program maximized the number of SVRs and QALE, with an ICER compared to the next best intervention of $48,700/quality-adjusted life year. Hypothetical interventions that simultaneously addressed multiple points along the cascade provided better outcomes and more value for money than less costly interventions targeting single steps. The 5-year program cost of the hypothetical peer navigator intervention was $14.5 million per 10,000 newly diagnosed individuals. We estimate that imperfect follow-up during the HCV cascade of care greatly reduces the real-world effectiveness of HCV therapy. Our mathematical model shows that modestly effective interventions to improve follow-up would likely be cost-effective. Priority should be given to developing and

  9. The hepatitis C cascade of care: identifying priorities to improve clinical outcomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin P Linas

    Full Text Available As highly effective hepatitis C virus (HCV therapies emerge, data are needed to inform the development of interventions to improve HCV treatment rates. We used simulation modeling to estimate the impact of loss to follow-up on HCV treatment outcomes and to identify intervention strategies likely to provide good value for the resources invested in them.We used a Monte Carlo state-transition model to simulate a hypothetical cohort of chronically HCV-infected individuals recently screened positive for serum HCV antibody. We simulated four hypothetical intervention strategies (linkage to care; treatment initiation; integrated case management; peer navigator to improve HCV treatment rates, varying efficacies and costs, and identified strategies that would most likely result in the best value for the resources required for implementation.Sustained virologic responses (SVRs, life expectancy, quality-adjusted life expectancy (QALE, costs from health system and program implementation perspectives, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs.We estimate that imperfect follow-up reduces the real-world effectiveness of HCV therapies by approximately 75%. In the base case, a modestly effective hypothetical peer navigator program maximized the number of SVRs and QALE, with an ICER compared to the next best intervention of $48,700/quality-adjusted life year. Hypothetical interventions that simultaneously addressed multiple points along the cascade provided better outcomes and more value for money than less costly interventions targeting single steps. The 5-year program cost of the hypothetical peer navigator intervention was $14.5 million per 10,000 newly diagnosed individuals.We estimate that imperfect follow-up during the HCV cascade of care greatly reduces the real-world effectiveness of HCV therapy. Our mathematical model shows that modestly effective interventions to improve follow-up would likely be cost-effective. Priority should be given to

  10. Metabolomic profiling identifies potential pathways involved in the interaction of iron homeostasis with glucose metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lars Stechemesser

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: Elevated serum ferritin has been linked to type 2 diabetes (T2D and adverse health outcomes in subjects with the Metabolic Syndrome (MetS. As the mechanisms underlying the negative impact of excess iron have so far remained elusive, we aimed to identify potential links between iron homeostasis and metabolic pathways. Methods: In a cross-sectional study, data were obtained from 163 patients, allocated to one of three groups: (1 lean, healthy controls (n = 53, (2 MetS without hyperferritinemia (n = 54 and (3 MetS with hyperferritinemia (n = 56. An additional phlebotomy study included 29 patients with biopsy-proven iron overload before and after iron removal. A detailed clinical and biochemical characterization was obtained and metabolomic profiling was performed via a targeted metabolomics approach. Results: Subjects with MetS and elevated ferritin had higher fasting glucose (p < 0.001, HbA1c (p = 0.035 and 1 h glucose in oral glucose tolerance test (p = 0.002 compared to MetS subjects without iron overload, whereas other clinical and biochemical features of the MetS were not different. The metabolomic study revealed significant differences between MetS with high and low ferritin in the serum concentrations of sarcosine, citrulline and particularly long-chain phosphatidylcholines. Methionine, glutamate, and long-chain phosphatidylcholines were significantly different before and after phlebotomy (p < 0.05 for all metabolites. Conclusions: Our data suggest that high serum ferritin concentrations are linked to impaired glucose homeostasis in subjects with the MetS. Iron excess is associated to distinct changes in the serum concentrations of phosphatidylcholine subsets. A pathway involving sarcosine and citrulline also may be involved in iron-induced impairment of glucose metabolism. Author Video: Author Video Watch what authors say about their articles Keywords: Metabolomics, Hyperferritinemia, Iron overload, Metabolic

  11. Zero tillage: A potential technology to improve cotton yield

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abbas Hafiz Ghazanfar

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Zero tillage technology revealed with no use of any soil inverting technique to grow crops. The crop plant seed is planted in the soil directly after irrigation to make the soil soft without any replenishing in soil layers. A study was conducted to evaluate cotton genotypes FH-114 and FH-142 for the consecutive three years of growing seasons from 2013-15. The seed of both genotypes was sown with two date of sowing, 1 March and 1 May of each three years of sowing under three tillage treatments (zero tillage, minimum tillage and conventional tillage in triplicate completely randomized split-split plot design. It was found from results that significant differences were recorded for tillage treatments, date of sowing, genotypes and their interactions. Multivariate analysis was performed to evaluate the yield and it attributed traits for potential of FH-114 and FH-142 cotton genotypes. The genotype FH-142 was found with higher and batter performance as compared to FH-114 under zero tillage, minimum tillage and conventional tillage techniques. The traits bolls per plant, boll weight, fibre fineness, fibre strength, plant height, cotton yield per plant and sympodial branches per plant were found as most contributing traits towards cotton yield and production. It was also found that FH-142 gives higher output in terms of economic gain under zero tillage with 54% increase as compared to conventional tillage technique. It was suggested that zero tillage technology should be adopted to improve cotton yield and quality. It was also recommended that further study to evaluate zero tillage as potential technology should be performed with different regions, climate and timing throughout the world.

  12. Using Satellite Data to Identify the Causes of and Potential Solutions for Yield Gaps in India's Wheat Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, M.; Singh, B.; Srivastava, A.; Malik, R. K.; McDonald, A.; Lobell, D. B.

    2017-12-01

    Food security will be increasingly challenged by climate change, natural resource degradation, and population growth. Wheat yields, in particular, have already stagnated in many regions and will be further affected by warming temperatures. Despite these challenges, wheat yields can be increased by improving management practices in regions with existing yield gaps. We present two studies that are using satellite data to better understand the factors contributing to yield gaps and potential interventions to close yield gaps in India's main wheat belt, the Indo-Gangetic Plains (IGP). To identify the magnitude and causes of current yield gaps, we produced 30 meter resolution yield maps from 2001 to 2015 using Landsat sallite data and a new method that translates satellite vegetation indices to yield estimates using crop model simulations, bypassing the need for ground calibration data. This is one of the first attempts to apply this method to a smallholder agriculture system, where ground calibration data are rarely available. We find that yields can be increased by 11% on average and up to 32% in the eastern IGP by improving management to current best practices within a given district. Additionally, if current best practices from the highest-yielding state of Punjab are implemented in the eastern IGP, yields could increase by almost 110%. Considering the factors that most influence yields, later sow dates and warmer temperatures are most associated with low yields across the IGP. This suggests that strategies to reduce the negative effects of heat stress, like earlier sowing and planting heat-tolerant wheat varieties, are critical to increasing wheat yields in this globally-important agricultural region. We also apply this method to high-resolution micro-satellite data (impacts of a new fertilizer spreader technology and identify whether satellite data can be used to appropriately target this intervention.

  13. TH-B-BRC-00: How to Identify and Resolve Potential Clinical Errors Before They Impact Patients Treatment: Lessons Learned

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2016-06-15

    Radiation treatment consists of a chain of events influenced by the quality of machine operation, beam data commissioning, machine calibration, patient specific data, simulation, treatment planning, imaging and treatment delivery. There is always a chance that the clinical medical physicist may make or fail to detect an error in one of the events that may impact on the patient’s treatment. In the clinical scenario, errors may be systematic and, without peer review, may have a low detectability because they are not part of routine QA procedures. During treatment, there might be errors on machine that needs attention. External reviews of some of the treatment delivery components by independent reviewers, like IROC, can detect errors, but may not be timely. The goal of this session is to help junior clinical physicists identify potential errors as well as the approach of quality assurance to perform a root cause analysis to find and eliminate an error and to continually monitor for errors. A compilation of potential errors will be presented by examples of the thought process required to spot the error and determine the root cause. Examples may include unusual machine operation, erratic electrometer reading, consistent lower electron output, variation in photon output, body parts inadvertently left in beam, unusual treatment plan, poor normalization, hot spots etc. Awareness of the possibility and detection of error in any link of the treatment process chain will help improve the safe and accurate delivery of radiation to patients. Four experts will discuss how to identify errors in four areas of clinical treatment. D. Followill, NIH grant CA 180803.

  14. TH-B-BRC-00: How to Identify and Resolve Potential Clinical Errors Before They Impact Patients Treatment: Lessons Learned

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2016-01-01

    Radiation treatment consists of a chain of events influenced by the quality of machine operation, beam data commissioning, machine calibration, patient specific data, simulation, treatment planning, imaging and treatment delivery. There is always a chance that the clinical medical physicist may make or fail to detect an error in one of the events that may impact on the patient’s treatment. In the clinical scenario, errors may be systematic and, without peer review, may have a low detectability because they are not part of routine QA procedures. During treatment, there might be errors on machine that needs attention. External reviews of some of the treatment delivery components by independent reviewers, like IROC, can detect errors, but may not be timely. The goal of this session is to help junior clinical physicists identify potential errors as well as the approach of quality assurance to perform a root cause analysis to find and eliminate an error and to continually monitor for errors. A compilation of potential errors will be presented by examples of the thought process required to spot the error and determine the root cause. Examples may include unusual machine operation, erratic electrometer reading, consistent lower electron output, variation in photon output, body parts inadvertently left in beam, unusual treatment plan, poor normalization, hot spots etc. Awareness of the possibility and detection of error in any link of the treatment process chain will help improve the safe and accurate delivery of radiation to patients. Four experts will discuss how to identify errors in four areas of clinical treatment. D. Followill, NIH grant CA 180803

  15. Planting sentinel European trees in eastern Asia as a novel method to identify potential insect pest invaders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roques, Alain; Fan, Jian-Ting; Courtial, Béatrice; Zhang, Yan-Zhuo; Yart, Annie; Auger-Rozenberg, Marie-Anne; Denux, Olivier; Kenis, Marc; Baker, Richard; Sun, Jiang-Hua

    2015-01-01

    Quarantine measures to prevent insect invasions tend to focus on well-known pests but a large proportion of the recent invaders were not known to cause significant damage in their native range, or were not even known to science before their introduction. A novel method is proposed to detect new potential pests of woody plants in their region of origin before they are introduced to a new continent. Since Asia is currently considered to be the main supplier of insect invaders to Europe, sentinel trees were planted in China during 2007-2011 as an early warning tool to identify the potential for additional Asian insect species to colonize European trees. Seedlings (1-1.5 m tall) of five broadleaved (Quercus petraea, Q. suber, Q. ilex, Fagus sylvatica, and Carpinus betulus) and two conifer species (Abies alba and Cupressus sempervirens) were planted in blocks of 100 seedlings at two widely separated sites (one in a nursery near Beijing and the other in a forest environment near Fuyang in eastern China), and then regularly surveyed for colonization by insects. A total of 104 insect species, mostly defoliators, were observed on these new hosts, and at least six species were capable of larval development. Although a number of the insects observed were probably incidental feeders, 38 species had more than five colonization events, mostly infesting Q. petraea, and could be considered as being capable of switching to European trees if introduced to Europe. Three years was shown to be an appropriate duration for the experiment, since the rate of colonization then tended to plateau. A majority of the identified species appeared to have switched from agricultural crops and fruit trees rather than from forest trees. Although these results are promising, the method is not appropriate for xylophagous pests and other groups developing on larger trees. Apart from the logistical problems, the identification to species level of the specimens collected was a major difficulty. This

  16. Using an International Clinical Registry of Regional Anesthesia to Identify Targets for Quality Improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sites, Brian D.; Barrington, Michael J.; Davis, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    Background Despite the widespread use of regional anesthesia, limited information on clinical performance exists. Institutions, therefore, have little knowledge of how they are performing in regards to both safety and effectiveness. In this study, we demonstrate how a medical institution (or physician/physician group) may use data from a multi-center clinical registry of regional anesthesia to inform quality improvement strategies. Methods We analyzed data from the International Registry of Regional Anesthesia that includes prospective data on peripheral regional anesthesia procedures from 19 centers located around the world. Using data from the clinical registry, we present summary statistics of the overall safety and effectiveness of regional anesthesia. Furthermore, we demonstrate, using a variety of performance measures, how these data can be used by hospitals to identify areas for quality improvement. To do so, we compare the performance of one member institution (a United States medical center in New Hampshire) to that of the other 18 member institutions of the clinical registry. Results The clinical registry contained information on 23,271 blocks that were performed between June 1, 2011, and May 1, 2014, on 16,725 patients. The overall success rate was 96.7%, immediate complication rate was 2.2%, and the all-cause 60-day rate of neurological sequelae was 8.3 (95% CI, 7.2–9.7) per 10,000. Registry wide major hospital events included 7 wrong site blocks, 3 seizures, 1 complete heart block, 1 retroperitoneal hematoma, and 3 pneumothoraces. For our reference medical center, we identified areas meriting quality improvement. Specifically, after accounting for differences in the age, sex, and health status of patient populations, the reference medical center appeared to rely more heavily on opioids for post procedure management, had higher patient pain scores, and experienced delayed discharge when compared with other member institutions. Conclusions To our

  17. Identifying quality improvement intervention publications - A comparison of electronic search strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rubenstein Lisa V

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The evidence base for quality improvement (QI interventions is expanding rapidly. The diversity of the initiatives and the inconsistency in labeling these as QI interventions makes it challenging for researchers, policymakers, and QI practitioners to access the literature systematically and to identify relevant publications. Methods We evaluated search strategies developed for MEDLINE (Ovid and PubMed based on free text words, Medical subject headings (MeSH, QI intervention components, continuous quality improvement (CQI methods, and combinations of the strategies. Three sets of pertinent QI intervention publications were used for validation. Two independent expert reviewers screened publications for relevance. We compared the yield, recall rate, and precision of the search strategies for the identification of QI publications and for a subset of empirical studies on effects of QI interventions. Results The search yields ranged from 2,221 to 216,167 publications. Mean recall rates for reference publications ranged from 5% to 53% for strategies with yields of 50,000 publications or fewer. The 'best case' strategy, a simple text word search with high face validity ('quality' AND 'improv*' AND 'intervention*' identified 44%, 24%, and 62% of influential intervention articles selected by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ experts, a set of exemplar articles provided by members of the Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence (SQUIRE group, and a sample from the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organization of Care Group (EPOC register of studies, respectively. We applied the search strategy to a PubMed search for articles published in 10 pertinent journals in a three-year period which retrieved 183 publications. Among these, 67% were deemed relevant to QI by at least one of two independent raters. Forty percent were classified as empirical studies reporting on a QI intervention. Conclusions The presented

  18. Review of potential improvements using MRI in the radiotherapy workflow

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Torresin, Alberto; Brambilla, Maria Grazia; Monti, Angelo F.; Moscato, Alessio; Brockmann, Marc A.; University Medical Center Mannheim; Schad, Lothar; Attenberger, Ulrike I.; Lohr, Frank

    2015-01-01

    The goal of modern radiotherapy is to deliver a lethal amount of dose to tissue volumes that contain a significant amount of tumour cells while sparing surrounding unaffected or healthy tissue. Online image guided radiotherapy with stereotactic ultrasound, fiducial-based planar X-ray imaging or helical/conebeam CT has dramatically improved the precision of radiotherapy, with moving targets still posing some methodical problems regarding positioning. Therefore, requirements for precise target delineation and identification of functional body structures to be spared by high doses become more evident. The identification of areas of relatively radioresistant cells or areas of high tumor cell density is currently under development. This review outlines the state of the art of MRI integration into treatment planning and its importance in follow up and the quantification of biological effects. Finally the current state of the art of online imaging for patient positioning will be outlined and indications will be given what the potential of integrated radiotherapy/online MRI systems is.

  19. Identifying psychological contract breaches to guide improvements in faculty recruitment, retention, and development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peirce, Gretchen L; Desselle, Shane P; Draugalis, JoLaine R; Spies, Alan R; Davis, Tamra S; Bolino, Mark

    2012-08-10

    To identify pharmacy faculty members' perceptions of psychological contract breaches that can be used to guide improvements in faculty recruitment, retention, and development. A list of psychological contract breaches was developed using a Delphi procedure involving a panel of experts assembled through purposive sampling. The Delphi consisted of 4 rounds, the first of which elicited examples of psychological contract breaches in an open-ended format. The ensuing 3 rounds consisting of a survey and anonymous feedback on aggregated group responses. Usable responses were obtained from 11 of 12 faculty members who completed the Delphi procedure. The final list of psychological contract breaches included 27 items, after modifications based on participant feedback in subsequent rounds. The psychological contract breach items generated in this study provide guidance for colleges and schools of pharmacy regarding important aspects of faculty recruitment, retention, and development.

  20. Identifying a practice-based implementation framework for sustainable interventions for improving the evolving working environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Højberg, Helene; Nørregaard Rasmussen, Charlotte Diana; Osborne, Richard H.

    2018-01-01

    Our aim was to identify implementation components for sustainable working environment interventions in the nursing assistant sector to generate a framework to optimize the implementation of workplace improvement initiatives. The implementation framework was informed by: 1) an industry advisory...... group, 2) interviews with key stakeholder, 3) concept mapping workshops, and 4) an e-mail survey. Thirty five stakeholders were interviewed and contributed in the concept mapping workshops. Eleven implementation components were derived across four domains: 1) A supportive organizational platform, 2......) An engaged workplace with mutual goals, 3) The intervention is sustainably fitted to the workplace, and 4) the intervention is an attractive choice. The highest rated component was “Engaged and Active Management” (mean 4.1) and the lowest rated was “Delivered in an Attractive Form” (mean 2.8). The framework...

  1. Identifying Eating Occasion-Based Opportunities to Improve the Overall Diets of Australian Adolescents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia Fayet-Moore

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Adolescents in Australia have a poor dietary intake, leading to large numbers of them being at risk for inadequate intake of micronutrients, and excessive intake of less healthful dietary components. This study examined dietary intakes at multiple eating occasions to identify opportunities for more targeted recommendations and strategies to improve dietary intakes among adolescents. Data from the first 24-h recall of 14–18 years old in the 2011–2012 National Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey were analysed (n = 772. Participant-defined eating occasions were classified as breakfast, lunch, dinner or other eating occasions combined. The mean percent contribution to the total day intake of top shortfall nutrients (calcium, magnesium, vitamin A, iron, discretionary calories, saturated fat, free sugars and sodium, as well as nutrient density, the foods consumed and the percent of consumers at each eating occasion, were calculated. Breakfast had the lowest prevalence of consumers (81%, contributed the least to total daily energy (14.6% and almost a quarter of daily calcium and iron. Other eating occasions combined contributed 47.5% of free sugars and were top contributors of daily calcium (34.6% and magnesium (31.7%. Discretionary foods contributed 32.4% of the energy at lunch, and the sodium content at lunch was 415 mg/1000 kJ. Key opportunities identified for adolescents were to increase breakfast consumption, given the high nutrient densities of breakfasts consumed; improve overall lunch quality, particularly the sodium content; promote the intake of milk, fruit and a variety of vegetables at both lunch and dinner; maintain healthful choices at in-between meal eating occasions while focusing on decreasing the intake of discretionary foods.

  2. Gene expression profiling of prostate tissue identifies chromatin regulation as a potential link between obesity and lethal prostate cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebot, Ericka M; Gerke, Travis; Labbé, David P; Sinnott, Jennifer A; Zadra, Giorgia; Rider, Jennifer R; Tyekucheva, Svitlana; Wilson, Kathryn M; Kelly, Rachel S; Shui, Irene M; Loda, Massimo; Kantoff, Philip W; Finn, Stephen; Vander Heiden, Matthew G; Brown, Myles; Giovannucci, Edward L; Mucci, Lorelei A

    2017-11-01

    Obese men are at higher risk of advanced prostate cancer and cancer-specific mortality; however, the biology underlying this association remains unclear. This study examined gene expression profiles of prostate tissue to identify biological processes differentially expressed by obesity status and lethal prostate cancer. Gene expression profiling was performed on tumor (n = 402) and adjacent normal (n = 200) prostate tissue from participants in 2 prospective cohorts who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer from 1982 to 2005. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated from the questionnaire immediately preceding cancer diagnosis. Men were followed for metastases or prostate cancer-specific death (lethal disease) through 2011. Gene Ontology biological processes differentially expressed by BMI were identified using gene set enrichment analysis. Pathway scores were computed by averaging the signal intensities of member genes. Odds ratios (ORs) for lethal prostate cancer were estimated with logistic regression. Among 402 men, 48% were healthy weight, 31% were overweight, and 21% were very overweight/obese. Fifteen gene sets were enriched in tumor tissue, but not normal tissue, of very overweight/obese men versus healthy-weight men; 5 of these were related to chromatin modification and remodeling (false-discovery rate 7, 41% vs 17%; P = 2 × 10 -4 ) and an increased risk of lethal disease that was independent of grade and stage (OR, 5.26; 95% confidence interval, 2.37-12.25). This study improves our understanding of the biology of aggressive prostate cancer and identifies a potential mechanistic link between obesity and prostate cancer death that warrants further study. Cancer 2017;123:4130-4138. © 2017 American Cancer Society. © 2017 American Cancer Society.

  3. Incorporation of unique molecular identifiers in TruSeq adapters improves the accuracy of quantitative sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Jungeui; Gresham, David

    2017-11-01

    Quantitative analysis of next-generation sequencing (NGS) data requires discriminating duplicate reads generated by PCR from identical molecules that are of unique origin. Typically, PCR duplicates are identified as sequence reads that align to the same genomic coordinates using reference-based alignment. However, identical molecules can be independently generated during library preparation. Misidentification of these molecules as PCR duplicates can introduce unforeseen biases during analyses. Here, we developed a cost-effective sequencing adapter design by modifying Illumina TruSeq adapters to incorporate a unique molecular identifier (UMI) while maintaining the capacity to undertake multiplexed, single-index sequencing. Incorporation of UMIs into TruSeq adapters (TrUMIseq adapters) enables identification of bona fide PCR duplicates as identically mapped reads with identical UMIs. Using TrUMIseq adapters, we show that accurate removal of PCR duplicates results in improved accuracy of both allele frequency (AF) estimation in heterogeneous populations using DNA sequencing and gene expression quantification using RNA-Seq.

  4. 7 CFR 170.6 - How are potential market participants identified for the USDA Farmers Market?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards, Inspections, Marketing Practices), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) MISCELLANEOUS MARKETING PRACTICES UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 USDA...? Potential market participants are recruited by AMS market management through local farm organizations in the...

  5. Identifying improvements to complex pathways: evidence synthesis and stakeholder engagement in infant congenital heart disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowe, Sonya; Knowles, Rachel; Wray, Jo; Tregay, Jenifer; Ridout, Deborah A; Utley, Martin; Franklin, Rodney; Bull, Catherine L; Brown, Katherine L

    2016-06-06

    Many infants die in the year following discharge from hospital after surgical or catheter intervention for congenital heart disease (3-5% of discharged infants). There is considerable variability in the provision of care and support in this period, and some families experience barriers to care. We aimed to identify ways to improve discharge and postdischarge care for this patient group. A systematic evidence synthesis aligned with a process of eliciting the perspectives of families and professionals from community, primary, secondary and tertiary care. UK. A set of evidence-informed recommendations for improving the discharge and postdischarge care of infants following intervention for congenital heart disease was produced. These address known challenges with current care processes and, recognising current resource constraints, are targeted at patient groups based on the number of patients affected and the level and nature of their risk of adverse 1-year outcome. The recommendations include: structured discharge documentation, discharging certain high-risk patients via their local hospital, enhanced surveillance for patients with certain (high-risk) cardiac diagnoses and an early warning tool for parents and community health professionals. Our recommendations set out a comprehensive, system-wide approach for improving discharge and postdischarge services. This approach could be used to address challenges in delivering care for other patient populations that can fall through gaps between sectors and organisations. 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/

  6. Onset Dynamics of Action Potentials in Rat Neocortical Neurons and Identified Snail Neurons: Quantification of the Difference

    OpenAIRE

    Volgushev, Maxim; Malyshev, Aleksey; Balaban, Pavel; Chistiakova, Marina; Volgushev, Stanislav; Wolf, Fred

    2008-01-01

    The generation of action potentials (APs) is a key process in the operation of nerve cells and the communication between neurons. Action potentials in mammalian central neurons are characterized by an exceptionally fast onset dynamics, which differs from the typically slow and gradual onset dynamics seen in identified snail neurons. Here we describe a novel method of analysis which provides a quantitative measure of the onset dynamics of action potentials. This method captures the...

  7. Oil palm natural diversity and the potential for yield improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barcelos, Edson; Rios, Sara de Almeida; Cunha, Raimundo N. V.; Lopes, Ricardo; Motoike, Sérgio Y.; Babiychuk, Elena; Skirycz, Aleksandra; Kushnir, Sergei

    2015-01-01

    African oil palm has the highest productivity amongst cultivated oleaginous crops. Species can constitute a single crop capable to fulfill the growing global demand for vegetable oils, which is estimated to reach 240 million tons by 2050. Two types of vegetable oil are extracted from the palm fruit on commercial scale. The crude palm oil and kernel palm oil have different fatty acid profiles, which increases versatility of the crop in industrial applications. Plantations of the current varieties have economic life-span around 25–30 years and produce fruits around the year. Thus, predictable annual palm oil supply enables marketing plans and adjustments in line with the economic forecasts. Oil palm cultivation is one of the most profitable land uses in the humid tropics. Oil palm fruits are the richest plant source of pro-vitamin A and vitamin E. Hence, crop both alleviates poverty, and could provide a simple practical solution to eliminate global pro-vitamin A deficiency. Oil palm is a perennial, evergreen tree adapted to cultivation in biodiversity rich equatorial land areas. The growing demand for the palm oil threatens the future of the rain forests and has a large negative impact on biodiversity. Plant science faces three major challenges to make oil palm the key element of building the future sustainable world. The global average yield of 3.5 tons of oil per hectare (t) should be raised to the full yield potential estimated at 11–18t. The tree architecture must be changed to lower labor intensity and improve mechanization of the harvest. Oil composition should be tailored to the evolving needs of the food, oleochemical and fuel industries. The release of the oil palm reference genome sequence in 2013 was the key step toward this goal. The molecular bases of agronomically important traits can be and are beginning to be understood at the single base pair resolution, enabling gene-centered breeding and engineering of this remarkable crop. PMID:25870604

  8. Reimbursed Price of Orphan Drugs: Current Strategies and Potential Improvements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mincarone, Pierpaolo; Leo, Carlo Giacomo; Sabina, Saverio; Sarriá-Santamera, Antonio; Taruscio, Domenica; Serrano-Aguilar, Pedro Guillermo; Kanavos, Panos

    2017-01-01

    The pricing and reimbursement policies for pharmaceuticals are relevant to balance timely and equitable access for all patients, financial sustainability, and reward for valuable innovation. The proliferation of high-cost specialty medicines is particularly true in rare diseases (RDs) where the pricing mechanism is characterised by a lack of transparency. This work provides an overall picture of current strategies for the definition of the reimbursed prices of orphan drugs (ODs) and highlights some potential improvements. Current strategies and suggestions are presented along 4 dimensions: (1) comprehensive value assessment, (2) early dialogs among relevant stakeholders, (3) innovative reimbursement approaches, and (4) societal participation in producing ODs. Comprehensive value assessment could be achieved by clarifying the approach of distributive justice to adopt, ensuring a representative participation of stakeholders, and with a broad consideration of value-bearing factors. With respect to early dialogs, cross-border cooperation can be determinant to companies and agencies. The cost-benefit ratio of early dialogs needs to be demonstrated and the "regulatory capture" effect should be monitored. Innovative reimbursement approaches were developed to balance the need for evidence-based decisions with the timely access to innovative drugs. The societal participation in producing ODs needs to be recognised in a collaborating framework where adaptive agreements can be developed with mutual satisfaction. Such agreements could also impact on coverage and reimbursement decisions as additional elements for the determination of a comprehensive societal value of ODs. Further research is needed to investigate the highlighted open challenges so that RDs will not remain, in practical terms, orphan diseases. © 2017 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  9. Oil palm natural diversity and the potential for yield improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barcelos, Edson; Rios, Sara de Almeida; Cunha, Raimundo N V; Lopes, Ricardo; Motoike, Sérgio Y; Babiychuk, Elena; Skirycz, Aleksandra; Kushnir, Sergei

    2015-01-01

    African oil palm has the highest productivity amongst cultivated oleaginous crops. Species can constitute a single crop capable to fulfill the growing global demand for vegetable oils, which is estimated to reach 240 million tons by 2050. Two types of vegetable oil are extracted from the palm fruit on commercial scale. The crude palm oil and kernel palm oil have different fatty acid profiles, which increases versatility of the crop in industrial applications. Plantations of the current varieties have economic life-span around 25-30 years and produce fruits around the year. Thus, predictable annual palm oil supply enables marketing plans and adjustments in line with the economic forecasts. Oil palm cultivation is one of the most profitable land uses in the humid tropics. Oil palm fruits are the richest plant source of pro-vitamin A and vitamin E. Hence, crop both alleviates poverty, and could provide a simple practical solution to eliminate global pro-vitamin A deficiency. Oil palm is a perennial, evergreen tree adapted to cultivation in biodiversity rich equatorial land areas. The growing demand for the palm oil threatens the future of the rain forests and has a large negative impact on biodiversity. Plant science faces three major challenges to make oil palm the key element of building the future sustainable world. The global average yield of 3.5 tons of oil per hectare (t) should be raised to the full yield potential estimated at 11-18t. The tree architecture must be changed to lower labor intensity and improve mechanization of the harvest. Oil composition should be tailored to the evolving needs of the food, oleochemical and fuel industries. The release of the oil palm reference genome sequence in 2013 was the key step toward this goal. The molecular bases of agronomically important traits can be and are beginning to be understood at the single base pair resolution, enabling gene-centered breeding and engineering of this remarkable crop.

  10. Oil palm natural diversity and the potential for yield improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edson eBarcelos

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available African oil palm has the highest productivity amongst cultivated oleaginous crops. Species can constitute a single crop capable to fulfil the growing global demand for vegetable oils, which is estimated to reach 240 million tons by 2050. Two types of vegetable oil are extracted from the palm fruit on commercial scale. The crude palm oil and kernel palm oil have different fatty acid profiles, which increases versatility of the crop in industrial applications. Plantations of the current varieties have economic life-span around 25-30 years and produce fruits around the year. Thus, predictable annual palm oil supply enables marketing plans and adjustments in line with the economic forecasts. Oil palm cultivation is one of the most profitable land uses in the humid tropics. Oil palm fruits are the richest plant source of pro-vitamin A and vitamin E. Hence, crop both alleviates poverty, and could provide a simple practical solution to eliminate global pro-vitamin A deficiency. Oil palm is a perennial, evergreen tree adapted to cultivation in biodiversity rich equatorial land areas. The growing demand for the palm oil threatens the future of the rain forests and has a large negative impact on biodiversity. Plant science faces three major challenges to make oil palm the key element of building the future sustainable world. The global average yield of 3.5 tons of oil per hectare (t should be raised to the full yield potential estimated at 11-18t. The tree architecture must be changed to lower labor intensity and improve mechanization of the harvest. Oil composition should be tailored to the evolving needs of the food, oleochemical and fuel industries. The release of the oil palm reference genome sequence in 2013 was the key step towards this goal. The molecular bases of agronomically important traits can be and are beginning to be understood at the single base pair resolution, enabling gene-centered breeding and engineering of this remarkable crop.

  11. Dehalogenases: From Improved Performance to Potential Microbial Dehalogenation Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiau-Fu Ang

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The variety of halogenated substances and their derivatives widely used as pesticides, herbicides and other industrial products is of great concern due to the hazardous nature of these compounds owing to their toxicity, and persistent environmental pollution. Therefore, from the viewpoint of environmental technology, the need for environmentally relevant enzymes involved in biodegradation of these pollutants has received a great boost. One result of this great deal of attention has been the identification of environmentally relevant bacteria that produce hydrolytic dehalogenases—key enzymes which are considered cost-effective and eco-friendly in the removal and detoxification of these pollutants. These group of enzymes catalyzing the cleavage of the carbon-halogen bond of organohalogen compounds have potential applications in the chemical industry and bioremediation. The dehalogenases make use of fundamentally different strategies with a common mechanism to cleave carbon-halogen bonds whereby, an active-site carboxylate group attacks the substrate C atom bound to the halogen atom to form an ester intermediate and a halide ion with subsequent hydrolysis of the intermediate. Structurally, these dehalogenases have been characterized and shown to use substitution mechanisms that proceed via a covalent aspartyl intermediate. More so, the widest dehalogenation spectrum of electron acceptors tested with bacterial strains which could dehalogenate recalcitrant organohalides has further proven the versatility of bacterial dehalogenators to be considered when determining the fate of halogenated organics at contaminated sites. In this review, the general features of most widely studied bacterial dehalogenases, their structural properties, basis of the degradation of organohalides and their derivatives and how they have been improved for various applications is discussed.

  12. Dehalogenases: From Improved Performance to Potential Microbial Dehalogenation Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ang, Thiau-Fu; Maiangwa, Jonathan; Salleh, Abu Bakar; Normi, Yahaya M; Leow, Thean Chor

    2018-05-07

    The variety of halogenated substances and their derivatives widely used as pesticides, herbicides and other industrial products is of great concern due to the hazardous nature of these compounds owing to their toxicity, and persistent environmental pollution. Therefore, from the viewpoint of environmental technology, the need for environmentally relevant enzymes involved in biodegradation of these pollutants has received a great boost. One result of this great deal of attention has been the identification of environmentally relevant bacteria that produce hydrolytic dehalogenases—key enzymes which are considered cost-effective and eco-friendly in the removal and detoxification of these pollutants. These group of enzymes catalyzing the cleavage of the carbon-halogen bond of organohalogen compounds have potential applications in the chemical industry and bioremediation. The dehalogenases make use of fundamentally different strategies with a common mechanism to cleave carbon-halogen bonds whereby, an active-site carboxylate group attacks the substrate C atom bound to the halogen atom to form an ester intermediate and a halide ion with subsequent hydrolysis of the intermediate. Structurally, these dehalogenases have been characterized and shown to use substitution mechanisms that proceed via a covalent aspartyl intermediate. More so, the widest dehalogenation spectrum of electron acceptors tested with bacterial strains which could dehalogenate recalcitrant organohalides has further proven the versatility of bacterial dehalogenators to be considered when determining the fate of halogenated organics at contaminated sites. In this review, the general features of most widely studied bacterial dehalogenases, their structural properties, basis of the degradation of organohalides and their derivatives and how they have been improved for various applications is discussed.

  13. Data in support of quantitative proteomics to identify potential virulence regulators in Paracoccidioides brasiliensis isolates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre Keiji Tashima

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Paracoccidioides genus are the etiologic agents of paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM, a systemic mycosis endemic in Latin America. Few virulence factors have been identified in these fungi. This paper describes support data from the quantitative proteomics of Paracoccidioides brasiliensis attenuated and virulent isolates [1]. The protein compositions of two isolates of the Pb18 strain showing distinct infection profiles were quantitatively assessed by stable isotopic dimethyl labeling and proteomic analysis. The mass spectrometry and the analysis dataset have been deposited to the ProteomeXchange Consortium via the PRIDE partner repository with identifier PXD000804.

  14. Identifying and Mitigating Potential Nutrient and Sediment Hot Spots under a Future Scenario in the Missouri River Basin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wu, May [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Zhang, Zhonglong [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)

    2015-09-01

    Using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) for large-scale watershed modeling could be useful for evaluating the quality of the water in regions that are dominated by nonpoint sources in order to identify potential “hot spots” for which mitigating strategies could be further developed. An analysis of water quality under future scenarios in which changes in land use would be made to accommodate increased biofuel production was developed for the Missouri River Basin (MoRB) based on a SWAT model application. The analysis covered major agricultural crops and biofuel feedstock in the MoRB, including pasture land, hay, corn, soybeans, wheat, and switchgrass. The analysis examined, at multiple temporal and spatial scales, how nitrate, organic nitrogen, and total nitrogen; phosphorus, organic phosphorus, inorganic phosphorus, and total phosphorus; suspended sediments; and water flow (water yield) would respond to the shifts in land use that would occur under proposed future scenarios. The analysis was conducted at three geospatial scales: (1) large tributary basin scale (two: Upper MoRB and Lower MoRB); (2) regional watershed scale (seven: Upper Missouri River, Middle Missouri River, Middle Lower Missouri River, Lower Missouri River, Yellowstone River, Platte River, and Kansas River); and (3) eight-digit hydrologic unit (HUC-8) subbasin scale (307 subbasins). Results showed that subbasin-level variations were substantial. Nitrogen loadings decreased across the entire Upper MoRB, and they increased in several subbasins in the Lower MoRB. Most nitrate reductions occurred in lateral flow. Also at the subbasin level, phosphorus in organic, sediment, and soluble forms was reduced by 35%, 45%, and 65%, respectively. Suspended sediments increased in 68% of the subbasins. The water yield decreased in 62% of the subbasins. In the Kansas River watershed, the water quality improved significantly with regard to every nitrogen and phosphorus compound. The improvement was

  15. Evaluation of potential regulatory elements identified as DNase I hypersensitive sites in the CFTR gene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Phylactides, M.; Rowntree, R.; Nuthall, H.

    2002-01-01

    hypersensitive sites (DHS) within the locus. We previously identified at least 12 clusters of DHS across the CFTR gene and here further evaluate DHS in introns 2,3,10,16,17a, 18, 20 and 21 to assess their functional importance in regulation of CFTR gene expression. Transient transfections of enhancer/reporter...

  16. Cluster analysis of spontaneous preterm birth phenotypes identifies potential associations among preterm birth mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esplin, M Sean; Manuck, Tracy A; Varner, Michael W; Christensen, Bryce; Biggio, Joseph; Bukowski, Radek; Parry, Samuel; Zhang, Heping; Huang, Hao; Andrews, William; Saade, George; Sadovsky, Yoel; Reddy, Uma M; Ilekis, John

    2015-09-01

    We sought to use an innovative tool that is based on common biologic pathways to identify specific phenotypes among women with spontaneous preterm birth (SPTB) to enhance investigators' ability to identify and to highlight common mechanisms and underlying genetic factors that are responsible for SPTB. We performed a secondary analysis of a prospective case-control multicenter study of SPTB. All cases delivered a preterm singleton at SPTB ≤34.0 weeks' gestation. Each woman was assessed for the presence of underlying SPTB causes. A hierarchic cluster analysis was used to identify groups of women with homogeneous phenotypic profiles. One of the phenotypic clusters was selected for candidate gene association analysis with the use of VEGAS software. One thousand twenty-eight women with SPTB were assigned phenotypes. Hierarchic clustering of the phenotypes revealed 5 major clusters. Cluster 1 (n = 445) was characterized by maternal stress; cluster 2 (n = 294) was characterized by premature membrane rupture; cluster 3 (n = 120) was characterized by familial factors, and cluster 4 (n = 63) was characterized by maternal comorbidities. Cluster 5 (n = 106) was multifactorial and characterized by infection (INF), decidual hemorrhage (DH), and placental dysfunction (PD). These 3 phenotypes were correlated highly by χ(2) analysis (PD and DH, P cluster 3 of SPTB. We identified 5 major clusters of SPTB based on a phenotype tool and hierarch clustering. There was significant correlation between several of the phenotypes. The INS gene was associated with familial factors that were underlying SPTB. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Identifying Stem-like Cells Using Mitochondrial Membrane Potential | Center for Cancer Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Therapies that are based on living cells promise to improve treatments for metastatic cancer and for many degenerative diseases. Lasting treatment of these maladies may require the durable persistence of cells. Long-term engraftment of cells – for months or years – and the generation of large numbers of progeny are characteristics of stem cells. Most approaches to isolate

  18. Identifying the Potential Organizational Impact of an Educational Peer Review Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toth, Kate E.; McKey, Colleen A.

    2010-01-01

    The literature on educational peer review (EPR) has focused on evaluating EPR's impact on faculty and/or student learning outcomes; no literature exists on the potential organizational impact. A qualitative (case study) research design explored perceptions of 17 faculty and 10 administrators within a school of nursing in an Ontario university…

  19. Identifying electricity-saving potential in rural China: Empirical evidence from a household survey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu, Yihua; Guo, Jin

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, there has been a fast-growing body of literature examining energy-saving potential in relation to electricity. However, empirical studies focusing on non-Western nations are limited. To fill this gap, this study intends to examine the electricity-saving potential of rural households in China using a unique data set from the China Residential Electricity Consumption Survey (CRECS) in collaboration with the China General Social Survey (CGSS), conducted nationwide at the household level in rural China. We use a stochastic frontier model, which allows us to decompose residential electricity consumption into the minimum necessary amount of consumption based on physical characteristics (e.g. house size, house age, number of televisions or refrigerators) and estimate the consumption slack (i.e. the amount of electricity consumption that could be saved), which depends on various factors. We find that rural households in China are generally efficient in electricity saving and the saving potential is affected by (fast) information feedback and social-demographic characteristics, instead of by the (averaged) electricity price, or energy efficiency labelling signals. In addition, we find no evidence of regional heterogeneity on electricity saving potential for rural households. Policy implications are derived. - Highlights: •Electricity saving potential of rural households in China is examined. •Unique survey data from the CRECS in collaboration with the CGSS are used. •A stochastic frontier model is applied. •Information feedback and social-demographic characteristics matter. •Electricity price or energy efficiency tier rating does not matter.

  20. Hospital to Post-Acute Care Facility Transfers: Identifying Targets for Information Exchange Quality Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Christine D; Cumbler, Ethan; Honigman, Benjamin; Burke, Robert E; Boxer, Rebecca S; Levy, Cari; Coleman, Eric A; Wald, Heidi L

    2017-01-01

    Information exchange is critical to high-quality care transitions from hospitals to post-acute care (PAC) facilities. We conducted a survey to evaluate the completeness and timeliness of information transfer and communication between a tertiary-care academic hospital and its related PAC facilities. This was a cross-sectional Web-based 36-question survey of 110 PAC clinicians and staff representing 31 PAC facilities conducted between October and December 2013. We received responses from 71 of 110 individuals representing 29 of 31 facilities (65% and 94% response rates). We collapsed 4-point Likert responses into dichotomous variables to reflect completeness (sufficient vs insufficient) and timeliness (timely vs not timely) for information transfer and communication. Among respondents, 32% reported insufficient information about discharge medical conditions and management plan, and 83% reported at least occasionally encountering problems directly related to inadequate information from the hospital. Hospital clinician contact information was the most common insufficient domain. With respect to timeliness, 86% of respondents desired receipt of a discharge summary on or before the day of discharge, but only 58% reported receiving the summary within this time frame. Through free-text responses, several participants expressed the need for paper prescriptions for controlled pain medications to be sent with patients at the time of transfer. Staff and clinicians at PAC facilities perceive substantial deficits in content and timeliness of information exchange between the hospital and facilities. Such deficits are particularly relevant in the context of the increasing prevalence of bundled payments for care across settings as well as forthcoming readmissions penalties for PAC facilities. Targets identified for quality improvement include structuring discharge summary information to include information identified as deficient by respondents, completion of discharge summaries

  1. Good practice or positive action? Using Q methodology to identify competing views on improving gender equality in academic medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryant, Louise D; Burkinshaw, Paula; House, Allan O; West, Robert M; Ward, Vicky

    2017-08-22

    The number of women entering medicine has increased significantly, yet women are still under-represented at senior levels in academic medicine. To support the gender equality action plan at one School of Medicine, this study sought to (1) identify the range of viewpoints held by staff on how to address gender inequality and (2) identify attitudinal barriers to change. Q methodology. 50 potential interventions representing good practice or positive action, and addressing cultural, organisational and individual barriers to gender equality, were ranked by participants according to their perception of priority. The School of Medicine at the University of Leeds, UK. Fifty-five staff members were purposively sampled to represent gender and academic pay grade. Principal components analysis identified six competing viewpoints on how to address gender inequality. Four viewpoints favoured positive action interventions: (1) support careers of women with childcare commitments, (2) support progression of women into leadership roles rather than focus on women with children, (3) support careers of all women rather than just those aiming for leadership, and (4) drive change via high-level financial and strategic initiatives. Two viewpoints favoured good practice with no specific focus on women by (5) recognising merit irrespective of gender and (6) improving existing career development practice. No viewpoint was strongly associated with gender, pay grade or role; however, latent class analysis identified that female staff were more likely than male to prioritise the setting of equality targets. Attitudinal barriers to the setting of targets and other positive action initiatives were identified, and it was clear that not all staff supported positive action approaches. The findings and the approach have utility for those involved in gender equality work in other medical and academic institutions. However, the impact of such initiatives needs to be evaluated in the longer term.

  2. Identifying factors to improve oral cancer screening uptake: a qualitative study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh Vida Zohoori

    Full Text Available To engage with high risk groups to identify knowledge and awareness of oral cancer signs and symptoms and the factors likely to contribute to improved screening uptake.Focus group discussions were undertaken with 18 males; 40+ years of age; smokers and/or drinkers (15+ cigarettes per day and/or 15+ units of alcohol per week, irregular dental attenders living in economically deprived areas of Teesside.There was a striking reported lack of knowledge and awareness of oral cancer and its signs and symptoms among the participants. When oral/mouth cancer leaflets produced by Cancer Research UK were presented to the participants, they claimed that they would seek help on noticing such a condition. There was a preference to seek help from their general practitioner rather than their dentist due to perceptions that a dentist is 'inaccessible' on a physical and psychological level, costly, a 'tooth specialist' not a 'mouth specialist', and also not able to prescribe medication and make referrals to specialists. Interestingly, none of the 18 participants who were offered a free oral cancer examination at a dental practice took up this offer.The uptake of oral cancer screening may be improved by increasing knowledge of the existence and signs and symptoms of oral cancer. Other factors that may increase uptake are increased awareness of the role of dentists in diagnosing oral cancer, promotion of oral cancer screening by health professionals during routine health checks, and the use of a "health" screening setting as opposed to a "dental" setting for such checks.

  3. Improving healthcare practice behaviors: an exploratory study identifying effective and ineffective behaviors in healthcare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Fleet, David D; Peterson, Tim O

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to present the results of exploratory research designed to develop an awareness of healthcare behaviors, with a view toward improving the customer satisfaction with healthcare services. It examines the relationship between healthcare providers and their consumers/patients/clients. The study uses a critical incident methodology, with both effective and ineffective behavioral specimens examined across different provider groups. The effects of these different behaviors on what Berry (1999) identified as the common core values of service organizations are examined, as those values are required to build a lasting service relationship. Also examined are categories of healthcare practice based on the National Quality Strategy priorities. The most obvious is the retrospective nature of the method used. How accurate are patient or consumer memories? Are they capable of making valid judgments of healthcare experiences (Berry and Bendapudi, 2003)? While an obvious limitation, such recollections are clearly important as they may be paramount in following the healthcare practitioners' instructions, loyalty for repeat business, making recommendations to others and the like. Further, studies have shown retrospective reports to be accurate and useful (Miller et al., 1997). With this information, healthcare educators should be in a better position to improve the training offered in their programs and practitioners to better serve their customers. The findings would indicate that the human values of excellence, innovation, joy, respect and integrity play a significant role in building a strong service relationship between consumer and healthcare provider. Berry (1999) has argued that the overriding importance in building a lasting service business is human values. This exploratory study has shown how critical incident analysis can be used to determine both effective and ineffective practices of different medical providers. It also provides guidelines as

  4. Fine-Mapping of Common Genetic Variants Associated with Colorectal Tumor Risk Identified Potential Functional Variants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mengmeng Du

    Full Text Available Genome-wide association studies (GWAS have identified many common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs associated with colorectal cancer risk. These SNPs may tag correlated variants with biological importance. Fine-mapping around GWAS loci can facilitate detection of functional candidates and additional independent risk variants. We analyzed 11,900 cases and 14,311 controls in the Genetics and Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer Consortium and the Colon Cancer Family Registry. To fine-map genomic regions containing all known common risk variants, we imputed high-density genetic data from the 1000 Genomes Project. We tested single-variant associations with colorectal tumor risk for all variants spanning genomic regions 250-kb upstream or downstream of 31 GWAS-identified SNPs (index SNPs. We queried the University of California, Santa Cruz Genome Browser to examine evidence for biological function. Index SNPs did not show the strongest association signals with colorectal tumor risk in their respective genomic regions. Bioinformatics analysis of SNPs showing smaller P-values in each region revealed 21 functional candidates in 12 loci (5q31.1, 8q24, 11q13.4, 11q23, 12p13.32, 12q24.21, 14q22.2, 15q13, 18q21, 19q13.1, 20p12.3, and 20q13.33. We did not observe evidence of additional independent association signals in GWAS-identified regions. Our results support the utility of integrating data from comprehensive fine-mapping with expanding publicly available genomic databases to help clarify GWAS associations and identify functional candidates that warrant more onerous laboratory follow-up. Such efforts may aid the eventual discovery of disease-causing variant(s.

  5. The potential for intelligent decision support systems to improve the quality and consistency of medication reviews.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bindoff, I; Stafford, A; Peterson, G; Kang, B H; Tenni, P

    2012-08-01

    Drug-related problems (DRPs) are of serious concern worldwide, particularly for the elderly who often take many medications simultaneously. Medication reviews have been demonstrated to improve medication usage, leading to reductions in DRPs and potential savings in healthcare costs. However, medication reviews are not always of a consistently high standard, and there is often room for improvement in the quality of their findings. Our aim was to produce computerized intelligent decision support software that can improve the consistency and quality of medication review reports, by helping to ensure that DRPs relevant to a patient are overlooked less frequently. A system that largely achieved this goal was previously published, but refinements have been made. This paper examines the results of both the earlier and newer systems. Two prototype multiple-classification ripple-down rules medication review systems were built, the second being a refinement of the first. Each of the systems was trained incrementally using a human medication review expert. The resultant knowledge bases were analysed and compared, showing factors such as accuracy, time taken to train, and potential errors avoided. The two systems performed well, achieving accuracies of approximately 80% and 90%, after being trained on only a small number of cases (126 and 244 cases, respectively). Through analysis of the available data, it was estimated that without the system intervening, the expert training the first prototype would have missed approximately 36% of potentially relevant DRPs, and the second 43%. However, the system appeared to prevent the majority of these potential expert errors by correctly identifying the DRPs for them, leaving only an estimated 8% error rate for the first expert and 4% for the second. These intelligent decision support systems have shown a clear potential to substantially improve the quality and consistency of medication reviews, which should in turn translate into

  6. Benchmarking to Identify Practice Variation in Test Ordering: A Potential Tool for Utilization Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Signorelli, Heather; Straseski, Joely A; Genzen, Jonathan R; Walker, Brandon S; Jackson, Brian R; Schmidt, Robert L

    2015-01-01

    Appropriate test utilization is usually evaluated by adherence to published guidelines. In many cases, medical guidelines are not available. Benchmarking has been proposed as a method to identify practice variations that may represent inappropriate testing. This study investigated the use of benchmarking to identify sites with inappropriate utilization of testing for a particular analyte. We used a Web-based survey to compare 2 measures of vitamin D utilization: overall testing intensity (ratio of total vitamin D orders to blood-count orders) and relative testing intensity (ratio of 1,25(OH)2D to 25(OH)D test orders). A total of 81 facilities contributed data. The average overall testing intensity index was 0.165, or approximately 1 vitamin D test for every 6 blood-count tests. The average relative testing intensity index was 0.055, or one 1,25(OH)2D test for every 18 of the 25(OH)D tests. Both indexes varied considerably. Benchmarking can be used as a screening tool to identify outliers that may be associated with inappropriate test utilization. Copyright© by the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP).

  7. Identifying potential engaging leaders within medical education: The role of positive influence on peers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalec, Barret; Veloski, J Jon; Hojat, Mohammadreza; Tykocinski, Mark L

    2014-08-26

    Abstract Background: Previous research has paid little to no attention towards exploring methods of identifying existing medical student leaders. Aim: Focusing on the role of influence and employing the tenets of the engaging leadership model, this study examines demographic and academic performance-related differences of positive influencers and if students who have been peer-identified as positive influencers also demonstrate high levels of genuine concern for others. Methods: Three separate fourth-year classes were asked to designate classmates that had significant positive influences on their professional and personal development. The top 10% of those students receiving positive influence nominations were compared with the other students on demographics, academic performance, and genuine concern for others. Results: Besides age, no demographic differences were found between positive influencers and other students. High positive influencers were not found to have higher standardized exam scores but did receive significantly higher clinical clerkship ratings. High positive influencers were found to possess a higher degree of genuine concern for others. Conclusion: The findings lend support to (a) utilizing the engaging model to explore leaders and leadership within medical education, (b) this particular method of identifying existing medical student leaders, and (c) return the focus of leadership research to the power of influence.

  8. Kinase Gene Expression Profiling of Metastatic Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma Tissue Identifies Potential New Therapeutic Targets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pooja Ghatalia

    Full Text Available Kinases are therapeutically actionable targets. Kinase inhibitors targeting vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFR and mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR improve outcomes in metastatic clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC, but are not curative. Metastatic tumor tissue has not been comprehensively studied for kinase gene expression. Paired intra-patient kinase gene expression analysis in primary tumor (T, matched normal kidney (N and metastatic tumor tissue (M may assist in identifying drivers of metastasis and prioritizing therapeutic targets. We compared the expression of 519 kinase genes using NanoString in T, N and M in 35 patients to discover genes over-expressed in M compared to T and N tissue. RNA-seq data derived from ccRCC tumors in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA were used to demonstrate differential expression of genes in primary tumor tissue from patients that had metastasis at baseline (n = 79 compared to those that did not develop metastasis for at least 2 years (n = 187. Functional analysis was conducted to identify key signaling pathways by using Ingenuity Pathway Analysis. Of 10 kinase genes overexpressed in metastases compared to primary tumor in the discovery cohort, 9 genes were also differentially expressed in TCGA primary tumors with metastasis at baseline compared to primary tumors without metastasis for at least 2 years: EPHB2, AURKA, GSG2, IKBKE, MELK, CSK, CHEK2, CDC7 and MAP3K8; p<0.001. The top pathways overexpressed in M tissue were pyridoxal 5'-phosphate salvage, salvage pathways of pyrimidine ribonucleotides, NF-kB signaling, NGF signaling and cell cycle control of chromosomal replication. The 9 kinase genes validated to be over-expressed in metastatic ccRCC may represent currently unrecognized but potentially actionable therapeutic targets that warrant functional validation.

  9. Identifying potential disaster zones around the Verkhnekamskoye potash deposit (Russia) using advanced information technology (IT)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royer, J. J.; Filippov, L. O.

    2017-07-01

    This work aims at improving the exploitation of the K, Mg, salts ore of the Verkhnekamskoye deposit using advanced information technology (IT) such as 3D geostatistical modeling techniques together with high performance flotation. It is expected to provide a more profitable exploitation of the actual deposit avoiding the formation of dramatic sinkholes by a better knowledge of the deposit. The GeoChron modelling method for sedimentary formations (Mallet, 2014) was used to improve the knowledge of the Verkhnekamskoye potash deposit, Perm region, Russia. After a short introduction on the modern theory of mathematical modelling applied to mineral resources exploitation and geology, new results are presented on the sedimentary architecture of the ore deposit. They enlighten the structural geology and the fault orientations, a key point for avoiding catastrophic water inflows recharging zone during exploitation. These results are important for avoiding catastrophic sinkholes during exploitation.

  10. IDENTIFYING REGIONAL CLUSTER MANAGEMENT POTENTIALS EMPIRICAL RESULTS FROM THREE NORTH RHINEWESTPHALIAN REGIONS

    OpenAIRE

    Rudiger Hamm; Christiane Goebel

    2010-01-01

    The development and support of clusters is an issue that became quite popular by players dealing with regional economic policy. But before a regional development agency can start to implement a cluster-oriented strategy there a two question that have to be answered: 1. What are the regional fields of competence (cluster potentials) that fulfill the requirements for a cluster-oriented regional development policy? 2. If you find such regional fields of competence, are the enterprises willing to...

  11. Improving Adsorption Deinking by Identifying the Optimum Balance between Polymer Beads and Deinking Chemistry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krithika Ravi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ink removal from recovered paper is a very important process in paper and board recycling. The current deinking processes have made obvious contributions to the use of raw materials for the paper and board industries. In contrast to the flotation deinking process, in which small air bubbles are used to remove ink from the pulp, the novel and more energy-efficient method of adsorption deinking technique depends on the attachment and adsorption of ink particles on small polymer beads. The energy savings of adsorption deinking results from the fact that the process is efficient at greater stock consistencies, thus providing water conservation and savings. The present study was carried out to improve the adsorption deinking method by identifying the optimum balance between the deinking chemistry and the polymer beads. Different types of deinking solutions and polymer beads were used for this study with newsprints and mixture of newsprints and magazines. It was found that EGA 3000 solution and polyethylene terephthalate beads worked well with newspaper pulp.

  12. Uses of tuberculosis mortality surveillance to identify programme errors and improve database reporting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selig, L; Guedes, R; Kritski, A; Spector, N; Lapa E Silva, J R; Braga, J U; Trajman, A

    2009-08-01

    In 2006, 848 persons died from tuberculosis (TB) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, corresponding to a mortality rate of 5.4 per 100 000 population. No specific TB death surveillance actions are currently in place in Brazil. Two public general hospitals with large open emergency rooms in Rio de Janeiro City. To evaluate the contribution of TB death surveillance in detecting gaps in TB control. We conducted a survey of TB deaths from September 2005 to August 2006. Records of TB-related deaths and deaths due to undefined causes were investigated. Complementary data were gathered from the mortality and TB notification databases. Seventy-three TB-related deaths were investigated. Transmission hazards were identified among firefighters, health care workers and in-patients. Management errors included failure to isolate suspected cases, to confirm TB, to correct drug doses in underweight patients and to trace contacts. Following the survey, 36 cases that had not previously been notified were included in the national TB notification database and the outcome of 29 notified cases was corrected. TB mortality surveillance can contribute to TB monitoring and evaluation by detecting correctable and specific programme- and hospital-based care errors, and by improving the accuracy of TB database reporting. Specific local and programmatic interventions can be proposed as a result.

  13. An improved approach to identify irradiated spices using electronic nose, FTIR, and EPR spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanyal, Bhaskar; Ahn, Jae-Jun; Maeng, Jeong-Hwan; Kyung, Hyun-Kyu; Lim, Ha-Kyeong; Sharma, Arun; Kwon, Joong-Ho

    2014-09-01

    Changes in cumin and chili powder from India resulting from electron-beam irradiation were investigated using 3 analytical methods: electronic nose (E-nose), Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. The spices had been exposed to 6 to 14 kGy doses recommended for microbial decontamination. E-nose measured a clear difference in flavor patterns of the irradiated spices in comparison with the nonirradiated samples. Principal component analysis further showed a dose-dependent variation. FTIR spectra of the samples showed strong absorption bands at 3425, 3007 to 2854, and 1746 cm(-1). However, both nonirradiated and irradiated spice samples had comparable patterns without any noteworthy changes in functional groups. EPR spectroscopy of the irradiated samples showed a radiation-specific triplet signal at g = 2.006 with a hyper-fine coupling constant of 3 mT confirming the results obtained with the E-nose technique. Thus, E-nose was found to be a potential tool to identify irradiated spices. © 2014 Institute of Food Technologists®

  14. Enhancing regulatory effectiveness by improving the process for identifying and resolving generic issues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vander Molen, Harold J.

    2001-01-01

    The Generic Issues Program first began formally in response to a Commission directive in October of 1976. In 1983, it became one of the first programs to make successful use of probabilistic risk information to aid in regulatory decision-making. In the 16 years since the program became quantitative, 836 issues have been processed. Of these, 106 reactor safety issues were prioritized as requiring further evaluation to determine the final resolution. Approximately a dozen generic issues remain unresolved. Although there is far less reactor licensing activity than in the 1970s, new issues continue to be identified from research and operational experience. These issues often involve complex and controversial questions of safety and regulation, and an efficient and effective means of addressing these issues is essential for regulatory effectiveness. Issues that involve a significant safety question require swift, effective, enforceable, and cost-effective regulatory actions. Issues that are of little safety significance must be quickly shown to be so and dismissed in an expeditious manner so as to avoid unnecessary expenditure of limited resources and to reduce regulatory uncertainty. Additionally, in the time since the generic issue program began, probabilistic risk assessment techniques have advanced significantly while agency resources have continued to diminish. Accordingly, the paper discusses the steps that have been taken to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the generic issue resolution process. Additionally, four resolved issues are discussed, along with key elements of a proposed new procedure for resolving potential generic issues

  15. Postgenomic approach to identify novel Mycobacterium leprae antigens with potential to improve immunodiagnosis of infection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geluk, Annemieke; Klein, Michèl R.; Franken, Kees L. M. C.; van Meijgaarden, Krista E.; Wieles, Brigitte; Pereira, Kelly Cristina; Bührer-Sékula, Samira; Klatser, Paul R.; Brennan, Patrick J.; Spencer, John S.; Williams, Diana L.; Pessolani, Maria C. V.; Sampaio, Elizabeth P.; Ottenhoff, Tom H. M.

    2005-01-01

    Early detection of Mycobacterium leprae infection is considered an important component of strategies aiming at reducing transmission of infection, but currently available diagnostic tools often lack sufficient sensitivity and specificity to reach this goal. Recent comparative genomics have revealed

  16. Identified best environmental management practices to improve the energy performance of the retail trade sector in Europe

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Galvez-Martos, Jose-Luis; Styles, David; Schoenberger, Harald

    2013-01-01

    The retail trade sector has been identified as a target sector for the development of sectoral reference documents on best environmental management practices under the Eco-Management and Audit Scheme. This paper focuses on the important energy-related needs in retailers' stores such as for food refrigeration and lighting, as well as heating, ventilation and air conditioning of the building. For the definition of best environmental management practices in the European framework, frontrunner retailers have been identified as those retailers integrating energy minimization and saving measures as standard practice systematically across stores. These best performers also integrate a comprehensive monitoring system in the energy management of every store or building belonging to the company, enabling the rapid identification of energy saving opportunities. An integrative approach is needed to define how best practices should be implemented in combination to optimize energy management within stores: building aspects such as insulation of the building envelope or the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, should be optimized in combination with best options for refrigeration in food retailers. Refrigeration systems are responsible for half of the final energy use in stores and of their carbon footprint. Natural refrigerants, heat recovery from the condensation stage and covering of display cases are measures with high environmental benefits to reduce the impact of refrigeration. Finally, practices for lighting, as optimal lighting strategies, and the integration of renewable energy sources in overall zero energy building concepts can save considerable amounts of fossil energy, reduce the carbon footprint and produce significant cost-savings in the long term. - highlights: • There is a high energy performance improvement potential of the retail trade sector. • We propose techniques with a high performance level and applied by frontrunners. • We identified

  17. Prediction potential of candidate biomarker sets identified and validated on gene expression data from multiple datasets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karacali Bilge

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Independently derived expression profiles of the same biological condition often have few genes in common. In this study, we created populations of expression profiles from publicly available microarray datasets of cancer (breast, lymphoma and renal samples linked to clinical information with an iterative machine learning algorithm. ROC curves were used to assess the prediction error of each profile for classification. We compared the prediction error of profiles correlated with molecular phenotype against profiles correlated with relapse-free status. Prediction error of profiles identified with supervised univariate feature selection algorithms were compared to profiles selected randomly from a all genes on the microarray platform and b a list of known disease-related genes (a priori selection. We also determined the relevance of expression profiles on test arrays from independent datasets, measured on either the same or different microarray platforms. Results Highly discriminative expression profiles were produced on both simulated gene expression data and expression data from breast cancer and lymphoma datasets on the basis of ER and BCL-6 expression, respectively. Use of relapse-free status to identify profiles for prognosis prediction resulted in poorly discriminative decision rules. Supervised feature selection resulted in more accurate classifications than random or a priori selection, however, the difference in prediction error decreased as the number of features increased. These results held when decision rules were applied across-datasets to samples profiled on the same microarray platform. Conclusion Our results show that many gene sets predict molecular phenotypes accurately. Given this, expression profiles identified using different training datasets should be expected to show little agreement. In addition, we demonstrate the difficulty in predicting relapse directly from microarray data using supervised machine

  18. Potential use of ionic species for identifying source land-uses of stormwater runoff.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Dong Hoon; Kim, Jin Hwi; Mendoza, Joseph A; Lee, Chang-Hee; Kang, Joo-Hyon

    2017-02-01

    Identifying critical land-uses or source areas is important to prioritize resources for cost-effective stormwater management. This study investigated the use of information on ionic composition as a fingerprint to identify the source land-use of stormwater runoff. We used 12 ionic species in stormwater runoff monitored for a total of 20 storm events at five sites with different land-use compositions during the 2012-2014 wet seasons. A stepwise forward discriminant function analysis (DFA) with the jack-knifed cross validation approach was used to select ionic species that better discriminate the land-use of its source. Of the 12 ionic species, 9 species (K + , Mg 2+ , Na + , NH 4 + , Br - , Cl - , F - , NO 2 - , and SO 4 2- ) were selected for better performance of the DFA. The DFA successfully differentiated stormwater samples from urban, rural, and construction sites using concentrations of the ionic species (70%, 95%, and 91% of correct classification, respectively). Over 80% of the new data cases were correctly classified by the trained DFA model. When applied to data cases from a mixed land-use catchment and downstream, the DFA model showed the greater impact of urban areas and rural areas respectively in the earlier and later parts of a storm event.

  19. Using Market Research to Characterize College Students and Identify Potential Targets for Influencing Health Behaviors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berg, Carla J.; Ling, Pamela M.; Guo, Hongfei; Windle, Michael; Thomas, Janet L.; Ahluwalia, Jasjit S.; An, Lawrence C.

    2013-01-01

    Marketing campaigns, such as those developed by the tobacco industry, are based on market research, which defines segments of a population by assessing psychographic characteristics (i.e., attitudes, interests). This study uses a similar approach to define market segments of college smokers, to examine differences in their health behaviors (smoking, drinking, binge drinking, exercise, diet), and to determine the validity of these segments. A total of 2,265 undergraduate students aged 18–25 years completed a 108-item online survey in fall 2008 assessing demographic, psychographic (i.e., attitudes, interests), and health-related variables. Among the 753 students reporting past 30-day smoking, cluster analysis was conducted using 21 psychographic questions and identified three market segments – Stoic Individualists, Responsible Traditionalists, and Thrill-Seeking Socializers. We found that segment membership was related to frequency of alcohol use, binge drinking, and limiting dietary fat. We then developed three messages targeting each segment and conducted message testing to validate the segments on a subset of 73 smokers representing each segment in spring 2009. As hypothesized, each segment indicated greater relevance and salience for their respective message. These findings indicate that identifying qualitatively different subgroups of young adults through market research may inform the development of engaging interventions and health campaigns targeting college students. PMID:25264429

  20. Identifying and sequencing a Mycobacterium sp. strain F4 as a potential bioremediation agent for quinclorac.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yingying; Chen, Wu; Wang, Yunsheng; Luo, Kun; Li, Yue; Bai, Lianyang; Luo, Feng

    2017-01-01

    Quinclorac is a widely used herbicide in rice filed. Unfortunately, quinclorac residues are phytotoxic to many crops/vegetables. The degradation of quinclorac in nature is very slow. On the other hand, degradation of quinclorac using bacteria can be an effective and efficient method to reduce its contamination. In this study, we isolated a quinclorac bioremediation bacterium strain F4 from quinclorac contaminated soils. Based on morphological characteristics and 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, we identified strain F4 as Mycobacterium sp. We investigated the effects of temperature, pH, inoculation size and initial quinclorac concentration on growth and degrading efficiency of F4 and determined the optimal quinclorac degrading condition of F4. Under optimal degrading conditions, F4 degraded 97.38% of quinclorac from an initial concentration of 50 mg/L in seven days. Our indoor pot experiment demonstrated that the degradation products were non-phytotoxic to tobacco. After analyzing the quinclorac degradation products of F4, we proposed that F4 could employ two pathways to degrade quinclorac: one is through methylation, the other is through dechlorination. Furthermore, we reconstructed the whole genome of F4 through single molecular sequencing and de novo assembly. We identified 77 methyltransferases and eight dehalogenases in the F4 genome to support our hypothesized degradation path.

  1. Identifying and sequencing a Mycobacterium sp. strain F4 as a potential bioremediation agent for quinclorac.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yingying Li

    Full Text Available Quinclorac is a widely used herbicide in rice filed. Unfortunately, quinclorac residues are phytotoxic to many crops/vegetables. The degradation of quinclorac in nature is very slow. On the other hand, degradation of quinclorac using bacteria can be an effective and efficient method to reduce its contamination. In this study, we isolated a quinclorac bioremediation bacterium strain F4 from quinclorac contaminated soils. Based on morphological characteristics and 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, we identified strain F4 as Mycobacterium sp. We investigated the effects of temperature, pH, inoculation size and initial quinclorac concentration on growth and degrading efficiency of F4 and determined the optimal quinclorac degrading condition of F4. Under optimal degrading conditions, F4 degraded 97.38% of quinclorac from an initial concentration of 50 mg/L in seven days. Our indoor pot experiment demonstrated that the degradation products were non-phytotoxic to tobacco. After analyzing the quinclorac degradation products of F4, we proposed that F4 could employ two pathways to degrade quinclorac: one is through methylation, the other is through dechlorination. Furthermore, we reconstructed the whole genome of F4 through single molecular sequencing and de novo assembly. We identified 77 methyltransferases and eight dehalogenases in the F4 genome to support our hypothesized degradation path.

  2. New potential markers of in vitro tomato morphogenesis identified by mRNA differential display.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torelli, A; Soragni, E; Bolchi, A; Petrucco, S; Ottonello, S; Branca, C

    1996-12-01

    The identification of plant genes involved in early phases of in vitro morphogenesis can not only contribute to our understanding of the processes underlying growth regulator-controlled determination, but also provide novel markers for evaluating the outcome of in vitro regeneration experiments. To search for such genes and to monitor changes in gene expression accompanying in vitro regeneration, we have adapted the mRNA differential display technique to the comparative analysis of a model system of tomato cotyledons that can be driven selectively toward either shoot or callus formation by means of previously determined growth regulator supplementations. Hormone-independent transcriptional modulation (mainly down-regulation) has been found to be the most common event, indicating that a non-specific reprogramming of gene expression quantitatively predominates during the early phases of in vitro culture. However, cDNA fragments representative of genes that are either down-regulated or induced in a programme-specific manner could also be identified, and two of them (G35, G36) were further characterized. One of these cDNA fragments, G35, corresponds to an mRNA that is down-regulated much earlier in callus- (day 2) than in shoot-determined explants (day 6). The other, G36, identifies an mRNA that is transiently expressed in shoot-determined explants only, well before any macroscopic signs of differentiation become apparent, and thus exhibits typical features of a morphogenetic marker.

  3. Planting sentinel European trees in eastern Asia as a novel method to identify potential insect pest invaders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Roques

    Full Text Available Quarantine measures to prevent insect invasions tend to focus on well-known pests but a large proportion of the recent invaders were not known to cause significant damage in their native range, or were not even known to science before their introduction. A novel method is proposed to detect new potential pests of woody plants in their region of origin before they are introduced to a new continent. Since Asia is currently considered to be the main supplier of insect invaders to Europe, sentinel trees were planted in China during 2007-2011 as an early warning tool to identify the potential for additional Asian insect species to colonize European trees. Seedlings (1-1.5 m tall of five broadleaved (Quercus petraea, Q. suber, Q. ilex, Fagus sylvatica, and Carpinus betulus and two conifer species (Abies alba and Cupressus sempervirens were planted in blocks of 100 seedlings at two widely separated sites (one in a nursery near Beijing and the other in a forest environment near Fuyang in eastern China, and then regularly surveyed for colonization by insects. A total of 104 insect species, mostly defoliators, were observed on these new hosts, and at least six species were capable of larval development. Although a number of the insects observed were probably incidental feeders, 38 species had more than five colonization events, mostly infesting Q. petraea, and could be considered as being capable of switching to European trees if introduced to Europe. Three years was shown to be an appropriate duration for the experiment, since the rate of colonization then tended to plateau. A majority of the identified species appeared to have switched from agricultural crops and fruit trees rather than from forest trees. Although these results are promising, the method is not appropriate for xylophagous pests and other groups developing on larger trees. Apart from the logistical problems, the identification to species level of the specimens collected was a major

  4. Melatonin identified in meats and other food stuffs: potentially nutritional impact.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Dun-Xian; Zanghi, Brian M; Manchester, Lucien C; Reiter, Russel J

    2014-09-01

    Melatonin has been identified in primitive photosynthetic bacteria, fungi, plants, and animals including humans. Vegetables, fruits, cereals, wine, and beers all contain melatonin. However, the melatonin content in meats has not been reported previously. Here, for the first time, we report melatonin in meats, eggs, colostrum, and in other edible food products. The levels of melatonin measured by HPLC, in lamb, beef, pork, chicken, and fish, are comparable to other food stuffs (in the range of ng/g). These levels are significantly higher than melatonin concentrations in the blood of vertebrates. As melatonin is a potent antioxidant, its presence in the meat could contribute to shelf life duration as well as preserve their quality and taste. In addition, the consumption of these foods by humans or animals could have health benefits considering the important functions of melatonin as a potent free radical scavenger and antioxidant. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. A Complementary Bioinformatics Approach to Identify Potential Plant Cell Wall Glycosyltransferase-Encoding Genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Egelund, Jack; Skjøt, Michael; Geshi, Naomi

    2004-01-01

    Plant cell wall (CW) synthesizing enzymes can be divided into the glycan (i.e. cellulose and callose) synthases, which are multimembrane spanning proteins located at the plasma membrane, and the glycosyltransferases (GTs), which are Golgi localized single membrane spanning proteins, believed....... Although much is known with regard to composition and fine structures of the plant CW, only a handful of CW biosynthetic GT genes-all classified in the CAZy system-have been characterized. In an effort to identify CW GTs that have not yet been classified in the CAZy database, a simple bioinformatics...... approach was adopted. First, the entire Arabidopsis proteome was run through the Transmembrane Hidden Markov Model 2.0 server and proteins containing one or, more rarely, two transmembrane domains within the N-terminal 150 amino acids were collected. Second, these sequences were submitted...

  6. Potential of bacterial fermentation as a biosafe method of improving ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2009-05-04

    May 4, 2009 ... the organic acid content of fermented feeds has been reported to improve ..... fatty acid and ethanol concentration resulting from the natural fermentation of ..... energy in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar L.) diets. Aquaculture 210:.

  7. Identifying and acting on potentially inappropriate care? Inadequacy of current hospital coding for this task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, P David; Smart, David R

    2017-06-01

    Recent Australian attempts to facilitate disinvestment in healthcare, by identifying instances of 'inappropriate' care from large Government datasets, are subject to significant methodological flaws. Amongst other criticisms has been the fact that the Government datasets utilized for this purpose correlate poorly with datasets collected by relevant professional bodies. Government data derive from official hospital coding, collected retrospectively by clerical personnel, whilst professional body data derive from unit-specific databases, collected contemporaneously with care by clinical personnel. Assessment of accuracy of official hospital coding data for hyperbaric services in a tertiary referral hospital. All official hyperbaric-relevant coding data submitted to the relevant Australian Government agencies by the Royal Hobart Hospital, Tasmania, Australia for financial year 2010-2011 were reviewed and compared against actual hyperbaric unit activity as determined by reference to original source documents. Hospital coding data contained one or more errors in diagnoses and/or procedures in 70% of patients treated with hyperbaric oxygen that year. Multiple discrete error types were identified, including (but not limited to): missing patients; missing treatments; 'additional' treatments; 'additional' patients; incorrect procedure codes and incorrect diagnostic codes. Incidental observations of errors in surgical, anaesthetic and intensive care coding within this cohort suggest that the problems are not restricted to the specialty of hyperbaric medicine alone. Publications from other centres indicate that these problems are not unique to this institution or State. Current Government datasets are irretrievably compromised and not fit for purpose. Attempting to inform the healthcare policy debate by reference to these datasets is inappropriate. Urgent clinical engagement with hospital coding departments is warranted.

  8. The Placental Secretome: Identifying Potential Cross-Talk Between Placenta and Islet β-Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Drynda

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Insulin-secreting islet β-cells adapt to the insulin resistance associated with pregnancy by increasing functional β-cell mass, but the placental signals involved in this process are not well defined. In the current study, we analysed expression of G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR mRNAs in mouse islets and islet GPCR ligand mRNAs in placenta during pregnancy to generate an atlas of potential interactions between the placenta and β-cells to inform future functional studies of islet adaptive responses to pregnancy. Methods: Quantative RT-PCR arrays were used to measure mRNA expression levels of: (i 342 GPCRs in islets from non-pregnant mice, and in islets isolated from mice on gestational days 12 and 18; (ii 126 islet GPCR ligands in mouse placenta at gestational days 12 and 18. Results: At gestational day 12, a time of rapid expansion of the β-cell mass, 189 islet GPCR mRNAs were quantifiable, while 79 of the 126 known islet GPCR ligand mRNAs were detectable in placental extracts. Approximately half of the quantifiable placental GPCR ligand genes were of unknown function in β-cells. The expression of some islet GPCR and placental ligand mRNAs varied during pregnancy, with altered expression of both GPCR and ligand mRNAs by gestational day 18. Conclusion: The current study has revealed numerous potential routes for interaction between the placenta and islets, and offers an atlas to inform further functional studies of their roles in adaptive responses to pregnancy, and in the regulation of the β-cell mass.

  9. Using event related potentials to identify a user's behavioural intention aroused by product form design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Yi; Guo, Fu; Zhang, Xuefeng; Qu, Qingxing; Liu, Weilin

    2016-07-01

    The capacity of product form to arouse user's behavioural intention plays a decisive role in further user experience, even in purchase decision, while traditional methods rarely give a fully understanding of user experience evoked by product form, especially the feeling of anticipated use of product. Behavioural intention aroused by product form designs has not yet been investigated electrophysiologically. Hence event related potentials (ERPs) were applied to explore the process of behavioural intention when users browsed different smart phone form designs with brand and price not taken into account for mainly studying the brain activity evoked by variety of product forms. Smart phone pictures with different anticipated user experience were displayed with equiprobability randomly. Participants were asked to click the left mouse button when certain picture gave them a feeling of behavioural intention to interact with. The brain signal of each participant was recorded by Curry 7.0. The results show that pictures with an ability to arouse participants' behavioural intention for further experience can evoke enhanced N300 and LPPs (late positive potentials) in central-parietal, parietal and occipital regions. The scalp topography shows that central-parietal, parietal and occipital regions are more activated. The results indicate that the discrepancy of ERPs can reflect the neural activities of behavioural intention formed or not. Moreover, amplitude of ERPs occurred in corresponding brain areas can be used to measure user experience. The exploring of neural correlated with behavioural intention provide an accurate measurement method of user's perception and help marketers to know which product can arouse users' behavioural intention, maybe taken as an evaluating indicator of product design. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  10. Effective Drug Delivery in Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma: A Theoretical Model to Identify Potential Candidates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatma E. El-Khouly

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Despite decades of clinical trials for diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG, patient survival does not exceed 10% at two years post-diagnosis. Lack of benefit from systemic chemotherapy may be attributed to an intact bloodbrain barrier (BBB. We aim to develop a theoretical model including relevant physicochemical properties in order to review whether applied chemotherapeutics are suitable for passive diffusion through an intact BBB or whether local administration via convection-enhanced delivery (CED may increase their therapeutic potential. Physicochemical properties (lipophilicity, molecular weight, and charge in physiological environment of anticancer drugs historically and currently administered to DIPG patients, that affect passive diffusion over the BBB, were included in the model. Subsequently, the likelihood of BBB passage of these drugs was ascertained, as well as their potential for intratumoral administration via CED. As only non-molecularly charged, lipophilic, and relatively small sized drugs are likely to passively diffuse through the BBB, out of 51 drugs modeled, only 8 (15%—carmustine, lomustine, erlotinib, vismodegib, lenalomide, thalidomide, vorinostat, and mebendazole—are theoretically qualified for systemic administration in DIPG. Local administration via CED might create more therapeutic options, excluding only positively charged drugs and drugs that are either prodrugs and/or only available as oral formulation. A wide variety of drugs have been administered systemically to DIPG patients. Our model shows that only few are likely to penetrate the BBB via passive diffusion, which may partly explain the lack of efficacy. Drug distribution via CED is less dependent on physicochemical properties and may increase the therapeutic options for DIPG.

  11. Spinal Cord Injury Clinical Registries: Improving Care across the SCI Care Continuum by Identifying Knowledge Gaps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dvorak, Marcel F; Cheng, Christiana L; Fallah, Nader; Santos, Argelio; Atkins, Derek; Humphreys, Suzanne; Rivers, Carly S; White, Barry A B; Ho, Chester; Ahn, Henry; Kwon, Brian K; Christie, Sean; Noonan, Vanessa K

    2017-10-15

    Timely access and ongoing delivery of care and therapeutic interventions is needed to maximize recovery and function after traumatic spinal cord injury (tSCI). To ensure these decisions are evidence-based, access to consistent, reliable, and valid sources of clinical data is required. The Access to Care and Timing Model used data from the Rick Hansen SCI Registry (RHSCIR) to generate a simulation of healthcare delivery for persons after tSCI and to test scenarios aimed at improving outcomes and reducing the economic burden of SCI. Through model development, we identified knowledge gaps and challenges in the literature and current health outcomes data collection throughout the continuum of SCI care. The objectives of this article were to describe these gaps and to provide recommendations for bridging them. Accurate information on injury severity after tSCI was hindered by difficulties in conducting neurological assessments and classifications of SCI (e.g., timing), variations in reporting, and the lack of a validated SCI-specific measure of associated injuries. There was also limited availability of reliable data on patient factors such as multi-morbidity and patient-reported measures. Knowledge gaps related to structures (e.g., protocols) and processes (e.g., costs) at each phase of care have prevented comprehensive evaluation of system performance. Addressing these knowledge gaps will enhance comparative and cost-effectiveness evaluations to inform decision-making and standards of care. Recommendations to do so were: standardize data element collection and facilitate database linkages, validate and adopt more outcome measures for SCI, and increase opportunities for collaborations with stakeholders from diverse backgrounds.

  12. Proteomic analysis of polyribosomes identifies splicing factors as potential regulators of translation during mitosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aviner, Ranen; Hofmann, Sarah; Elman, Tamar; Shenoy, Anjana; Geiger, Tamar; Elkon, Ran; Ehrlich, Marcelo; Elroy-Stein, Orna

    2017-06-02

    Precise regulation of mRNA translation is critical for proper cell division, but little is known about the factors that mediate it. To identify mRNA-binding proteins that regulate translation during mitosis, we analyzed the composition of polysomes from interphase and mitotic cells using unbiased quantitative mass-spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). We found that mitotic polysomes are enriched with a subset of proteins involved in RNA processing, including alternative splicing and RNA export. To demonstrate that these may indeed be regulators of translation, we focused on heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein C (hnRNP C) as a test case and confirmed that it is recruited to elongating ribosomes during mitosis. Then, using a combination of pulsed SILAC, metabolic labeling and ribosome profiling, we showed that knockdown of hnRNP C affects both global and transcript-specific translation rates and found that hnRNP C is specifically important for translation of mRNAs that encode ribosomal proteins and translation factors. Taken together, our results demonstrate how proteomic analysis of polysomes can provide insight into translation regulation under various cellular conditions of interest and suggest that hnRNP C facilitates production of translation machinery components during mitosis to provide daughter cells with the ability to efficiently synthesize proteins as they enter G1 phase. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  13. Historical uses of saffron: Identifying potential new avenues for modern research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seyedeh Zeinab Mousavi

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective: During the ancient times, saffron (Crocus sativus L. had many uses around the world; however, some of these uses were forgotten throughout the history. But a newly formed interest in natural active compounds brought back the attention toward historical uses of saffron. Understanding different uses of saffron in the past can help us finding the best uses at present. In this study, we reviewed different uses of saffron throughout the history among different nations.Methods: ISI web of Science and Medline, along with references of traditional Iranian medicine were searched for historical uses of saffron.Results: Saffron has been known since more than 3000 years ago by many nations. It was valued not only as a culinary condiment, but also as a dye, perfume and as a medicinal herb. Its medicinal uses ranged from treating eye problems to genitourinary and many other diseases in various cultures. It was also used as a tonic agent and antidepressant drug among many nations. Conclusion(s: Saffron has had many different uses such as a food additive and a palliative agent for many human diseases. Thus, as an important medicinal herb, it is a good candidate with many promising potentials to be considered for new drug design.

  14. Spatial Interaction Modeling to Identify Potentially Exposed Populations during RDD or IND Terrorism Incidents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Regens, J.L.; Gunter, J.T.; Gupta, S.

    2009-01-01

    Homeland Security Presidential Directive no.5 (HSPD-5) Management of Domestic Incidents and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Planning Guidance for Protection and Recovery Following Radiological Dispersal Device (RDD) and Improvised Nuclear Device (IND) Incidents underscore the need to delineate radiological emergency guidance applicable to remedial action and recovery following an RDD or IND incident. Rapid delineation of the population potentially exposed to ionizing radiation from fallout during terrorist incidents involving RDDs or low-yield nuclear devices (≤ 20 KT) is necessary for effective medical response and incident management as part of the recovery process. This paper illustrates the application of spatial interaction models to allocate population data for a representative U.S. urban area (≅1.3M people; 1,612.27 km 2 area) at a geographical scale relevant for accurately estimating risk given dose concentrations. Estimated total dose equivalents (TEDE) are calculated for isopleths moving away from the detonation point for typical release scenarios. Population is estimated within the TEDE zones using Euclidean distances between zip code polygon centroids generated in ArcGIS version 9.1 with distance decay determined by regression analysis to apportion origin-destination pairs to a population count and density matrix on a spatial basis for daytime and night-time release scenarios. (authors)

  15. Historical uses of saffron: Identifying potential new avenues for modern research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seyedeh Zeinab Mousavi

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective: During the ancient times, saffron (Crocus sativus L. had many uses around the world; however, some of these uses were forgotten throughout the history. But a newly formed interest in natural active compounds brought back the attention toward historical uses of saffron. Understanding different uses of saffron in the past can help us finding the best uses at present.In this study, wereviewed different uses of saffron throughout the history among different nations. Methods: ISI web of Science and Medline, along with references of traditional Iranian medicine were searched for historical uses of saffron. Results: Saffron has been known since more than 3000 years ago by many nations. It was valued not only as a culinary condiment, but also as a dye, perfume and as a medicinal herb. Its medicinal uses ranged from treating eye problems to genitourinary and many other diseases in various cultures. It was also used as a tonic agent and antidepressant drug among many nations. Conclusion(s: Saffron has had many different uses such as a food additive and a palliative agent for many human diseases. Thus, as an important medicinal herb, it is a good candidate with many promising potentials to be considered for new drug design.

  16. Identifying the null subject: evidence from event-related brain potentials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demestre, J; Meltzer, S; García-Albea, J E; Vigil, A

    1999-05-01

    Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded during spoken language comprehension to study the on-line effects of gender agreement violations in controlled infinitival complements. Spanish sentences were constructed in which the complement clause contained a predicate adjective marked for syntactic gender. By manipulating the gender of the antecedent (i.e., the controller) of the implicit subject while holding constant the gender of the adjective, pairs of grammatical and ungrammatical sentences were created. The detection of such a gender agreement violation would indicate that the parser had established the coreference relation between the null subject and its antecedent. The results showed a complex biphasic ERP (i.e., an early negativity with prominence at anterior and central sites, followed by a centroparietal positivity) in the violating condition as compared to the non-violating conditions. The brain reacts to NP-adjective gender agreement violations within a few hundred milliseconds of their occurrence. The data imply that the parser has properly coindexed the null subject of an infinitive clause with its antecedent.

  17. Using Smoke Injection in Drains to Identify Potential Preferential Pathways in a Drained Arable Field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, M. H.; Petersen, C. T.; Hansen, S.

    2014-12-01

    Macropores forming a continuous pathway between the soil surface and subsurface drains favour the transport of many contaminants from agricultural fields to surface waters. The smoke injection method presented by Shipitalo and Gibbs (2000) used for demonstrating and quantifying such pathways has been further developed and used on a drained Danish sandy loam. In order to identify the preferential pathways to drains, smoke was injected in three 1.15 m deep tile drains (total drain length 93 m), and smoke emitting macropores (SEMP) at the soil surface were counted and characterized as producing either strong or weak plumes compared to reference plumes from 3 and 6 mm wide tubes. In the two situations investigated in the present study - an early spring and an autumn situation, smoke only penetrated the soil surface layer via earthworm burrows located in a 1.0 m wide belt directly above the drain lines. However, it is known from previous studies that desiccation fractures in a dry summer situation also can contribute to the smoke pattern. The distance between SEMP measured along the drain lines was on average 0.46 m whereas the average spacing between SEMP with strong plumes was 2.3 m. Ponded water was applied in 6 cm wide rings placed above 52 burrows including 17 reference burrows which did not emit smoke. Thirteen pathways in the soil were examined using dye tracer and profile excavation. SEMP with strong plumes marked the entrance of highly efficient transport pathways conducting surface applied water and dye tracer into the drain. However, no single burrow was traced all the way from the surface into the drain, the dye patterns branched off in a network of other macropores. Water infiltration rates were significantly higher (P drains and surface waters, pathways being associated primarily with unevenly distributed SEMP producing strong smoke plumes.

  18. IDENTIFYING POTENTIAL MARKERS OF THE SUN'S GIANT CONVECTIVE SCALE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McIntosh, Scott W.; Wang, Xin [High Altitude Observatory, National Center for Atmospheric Research, P.O. Box 3000, Boulder, CO 80307 (United States); Leamon, Robert J. [Department of Physics, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717 (United States); Scherrer, Philip H. [W. W. Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States)

    2014-04-01

    Line-of-sight magnetograms from the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI) of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) are analyzed using a diagnostic known as the magnetic range of influence (MRoI). The MRoI is a measure of the length over which a photospheric magnetogram is balanced and so its application gives the user a sense of the connective length scales in the outer solar atmosphere. The MRoI maps and histograms inferred from the SDO/HMI magnetograms primarily exhibit four scales: a scale of a few megameters that can be associated with granulation, a scale of a few tens of megameters that can be associated with super-granulation, a scale of many hundreds to thousands of megameters that can be associated with coronal holes and active regions, and a hitherto unnoticed scale that ranges from 100 to 250 Mm. We infer that this final scale is an imprint of the (rotationally driven) giant convective scale on photospheric magnetism. This scale appears in MRoI maps as well-defined, spatially distributed concentrations that we have dubbed ''g-nodes''. Furthermore, using coronal observations from the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly on SDO, we see that the vicinity of these g-nodes appears to be a preferred location for the formation of extreme-ultraviolet (and likely X-Ray) brightpoints. These observations and straightforward diagnostics offer the potential of a near real-time mapping of the Sun's largest convective scale, a scale that possibly reaches to the very bottom of the convective zone.

  19. iTRAQ-Based Quantitative Proteomics Identifies Potential Regulatory Proteins Involved in Chicken Eggshell Brownness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guangqi Li

    Full Text Available Brown eggs are popular in many countries and consumers regard eggshell brownness as an important indicator of egg quality. However, the potential regulatory proteins and detailed molecular mechanisms regulating eggshell brownness have yet to be clearly defined. In the present study, we performed quantitative proteomics analysis with iTRAQ technology in the shell gland epithelium of hens laying dark and light brown eggs to investigate the candidate proteins and molecular mechanisms underlying variation in chicken eggshell brownness. The results indicated 147 differentially expressed proteins between these two groups, among which 65 and 82 proteins were significantly up-regulated in the light and dark groups, respectively. Functional analysis indicated that in the light group, the down-regulated iron-sulfur cluster assembly protein (Iba57 would decrease the synthesis of protoporphyrin IX; furthermore, the up-regulated protein solute carrier family 25 (mitochondrial carrier; adenine nucleotide translocator, member 5 (SLC25A5 and down-regulated translocator protein (TSPO would lead to increased amounts of protoporphyrin IX transported into the mitochondria matrix to form heme with iron, which is supplied by ovotransferrin protein (TF. In other words, chickens from the light group produce less protoporphyrin IX, which is mainly used for heme synthesis. Therefore, the exported protoporphyrin IX available for eggshell deposition and brownness is reduced in the light group. The current study provides valuable information to elucidate variation of chicken eggshell brownness, and demonstrates the feasibility and sensitivity of iTRAQ-based quantitative proteomics analysis in providing useful insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying brown eggshell pigmentation.

  20. Declines in Crime and Teen Childbearing: Identifying Potential Explanations for Contemporaneous Trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colen, Cynthia G.; Ramey, David M.; Browning, Christopher R.

    2016-01-01

    Objectives The previous 25 years have witnessed remarkable upheavals in the social landscape of the United States. Two of the most notable trends have been dramatic declines in levels of crime as well as teen childbearing. Much remains unknown about the underlying conditions that might be driving these changes. More importantly, we do not know if the same distal factors that are responsible for the drop in the crime rate are similarly implicated in falling rates of teen births. We examine four overarching potential explanations: fluctuations in economic opportunity, shifting population demographics, differences in state-level policies, and changes in expectations regarding health and mortality. Methods We combine state-specific data from existing secondary sources and model trajectories of violent crime, homicides, robberies, and teen fertility over a 20-year period from 1990 to 2010 using simultaneous fixed-effects regression models. Results We find that 4 of the 21 predictors examined - growth in the service sector of the labor market, increasing racial diversity especially among Hispanics, escalating levels of migration, and the expansion of family planning services to low-income women – offer the most convincing explanations for why rates of violent crime and teen births have been steadily decreasing over time. Moreover, we are able to account for almost a quarter of the joint declines in violent crime and teen births. Conclusions Our conclusions underscore the far reaching effects that aggregate level demographic conditions and policies are likely to have on important social trends that might, at first glance, seem unrelated. Furthermore, the effects of policy efforts designed to target outcomes in one area are likely to spill over into other domains. PMID:27695160

  1. Distribution and incidence of atoxigenic Aspergillus flavus VCG in tree crop orchards in California: a strategy for identifying potential antagonists

    Science.gov (United States)

    To identify predominant isolates for potential use as biocontrol agents, Aspergillus flavus isolates collected soils of almond, pistachio and fig orchard in the Central Valley of California were tested for their membership to 16 atoxigenic vegetative compatibility groups(VCGs), including YV36, the V...

  2. Assessment of power reliability and improvement potential by using ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper presents the use of smart reclosers for improving reliability of a distribution system of one of the major cities of Ethiopia. As frequent power interruptions are posing a huge problem to the life of the people and the economy, finding a solution to the problem is very essential. Electric reliability has affected social well ...

  3. Metabolomics has the potential to improve drug therapy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stage, Claus; Jürgens, Gesche; Dalhoff, Kim Peder

    2014-01-01

    Until now drug therapy has primarily been controlled by dose titration on the basis of effects and side effects. However, a lot of people being treated with a drug experience too little effect or too many side effects. Therefore it will be advantageous to improve drug therapy and make it even more...

  4. Improving the discovery potential of charged Higgs bosons at the ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The Run 2 discovery potential of H¦bosons in a general Type-II 2HDM is ... gluon and quark–antiquark pairs (hence – by definition – the attainable Higgs ... This description fails to correctly account for the production phenomenology of charged.

  5. Experience-based design for integrating the patient care experience into healthcare improvement: Identifying a set of reliable emotion words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russ, Lauren R; Phillips, Jennifer; Brzozowicz, Keely; Chafetz, Lynne A; Plsek, Paul E; Blackmore, C Craig; Kaplan, Gary S

    2013-12-01

    Experience-based design is an emerging method used to capture the emotional content of patient and family member healthcare experiences, and can serve as the foundation for patient-centered healthcare improvement. However, a core tool-the experience-based design questionnaire-requires words with consistent emotional meaning. Our objective was to identify and evaluate an emotion word set reliably categorized across the demographic spectrum as expressing positive, negative, or neutral emotions for experience-based design improvement work. We surveyed 407 patients, family members, and healthcare workers in 2011. Participants designated each of 67 potential emotion words as positive, neutral, or negative based on their emotional perception of the word. Overall agreement was assessed using the kappa statistic. Words were selected for retention in the final emotion word set based on 80% simple agreement on classification of meaning across subgroups. The participants were 47.9% (195/407) patients, 19.4% (33/407) family members and 32.7% (133/407) healthcare staff. Overall agreement adjusted for chance was moderate (k=0.55). However, agreement for positive (k=0.69) and negative emotions (k=0.68) was substantially higher, while agreement in the neutral category was low (k=0.11). There were 20 positive, 1 neutral, and 14 negative words retained for the final experience-based design emotion word set. We identified a reliable set of emotion words for experience questionnaires to serve as the foundation for patient-centered, experience-based redesign of healthcare. Incorporation of patient and family member perspectives in healthcare requires reliable tools to capture the emotional content of care touch points. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. High Aldehyde Dehydrogenase Activity Identifies a Subset of Human Mesenchymal Stromal Cells with Vascular Regenerative Potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherman, Stephen E; Kuljanin, Miljan; Cooper, Tyler T; Putman, David M; Lajoie, Gilles A; Hess, David A

    2017-06-01

    During culture expansion, multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) differentially express aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH), an intracellular detoxification enzyme that protects long-lived cells against oxidative stress. Thus, MSC selection based on ALDH-activity may be used to reduce heterogeneity and distinguish MSC subsets with improved regenerative potency. After expansion of human bone marrow-derived MSCs, cell progeny was purified based on low versus high ALDH-activity (ALDH hi ) by fluorescence-activated cell sorting, and each subset was compared for multipotent stromal and provascular regenerative functions. Both ALDH l ° and ALDH hi MSC subsets demonstrated similar expression of stromal cell (>95% CD73 + , CD90 + , CD105 + ) and pericyte (>95% CD146 + ) surface markers and showed multipotent differentiation into bone, cartilage, and adipose cells in vitro. Conditioned media (CDM) generated by ALDH hi MSCs demonstrated a potent proliferative and prosurvival effect on human microvascular endothelial cells (HMVECs) under serum-free conditions and augmented HMVEC tube-forming capacity in growth factor-reduced matrices. After subcutaneous transplantation within directed in vivo angiogenesis assay implants into immunodeficient mice, ALDH hi MSC or CDM produced by ALDH hi MSC significantly augmented murine vascular cell recruitment and perfused vessel infiltration compared with ALDH l ° MSC. Although both subsets demonstrated strikingly similar mRNA expression patterns, quantitative proteomic analyses performed on subset-specific CDM revealed the ALDH hi MSC subset uniquely secreted multiple proangiogenic cytokines (vascular endothelial growth factor beta, platelet derived growth factor alpha, and angiogenin) and actively produced multiple factors with chemoattractant (transforming growth factor-β, C-X-C motif chemokine ligand 1, 2, and 3 (GRO), C-C motif chemokine ligand 5 (RANTES), monocyte chemotactic protein 1 (MCP-1), interleukin [IL]-6, IL-8) and matrix

  7. A matter of timing: identifying significant multi-dose radiotherapy improvements by numerical simulation and genetic algorithm search.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon D Angus

    Full Text Available Multi-dose radiotherapy protocols (fraction dose and timing currently used in the clinic are the product of human selection based on habit, received wisdom, physician experience and intra-day patient timetabling. However, due to combinatorial considerations, the potential treatment protocol space for a given total dose or treatment length is enormous, even for relatively coarse search; well beyond the capacity of traditional in-vitro methods. In constrast, high fidelity numerical simulation of tumor development is well suited to the challenge. Building on our previous single-dose numerical simulation model of EMT6/Ro spheroids, a multi-dose irradiation response module is added and calibrated to the effective dose arising from 18 independent multi-dose treatment programs available in the experimental literature. With the developed model a constrained, non-linear, search for better performing cadidate protocols is conducted within the vicinity of two benchmarks by genetic algorithm (GA techniques. After evaluating less than 0.01% of the potential benchmark protocol space, candidate protocols were identified by the GA which conferred an average of 9.4% (max benefit 16.5% and 7.1% (13.3% improvement (reduction on tumour cell count compared to the two benchmarks, respectively. Noticing that a convergent phenomenon of the top performing protocols was their temporal synchronicity, a further series of numerical experiments was conducted with periodic time-gap protocols (10 h to 23 h, leading to the discovery that the performance of the GA search candidates could be replicated by 17-18 h periodic candidates. Further dynamic irradiation-response cell-phase analysis revealed that such periodicity cohered with latent EMT6/Ro cell-phase temporal patterning. Taken together, this study provides powerful evidence towards the hypothesis that even simple inter-fraction timing variations for a given fractional dose program may present a facile, and highly cost

  8. A matter of timing: identifying significant multi-dose radiotherapy improvements by numerical simulation and genetic algorithm search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angus, Simon D; Piotrowska, Monika Joanna

    2014-01-01

    Multi-dose radiotherapy protocols (fraction dose and timing) currently used in the clinic are the product of human selection based on habit, received wisdom, physician experience and intra-day patient timetabling. However, due to combinatorial considerations, the potential treatment protocol space for a given total dose or treatment length is enormous, even for relatively coarse search; well beyond the capacity of traditional in-vitro methods. In constrast, high fidelity numerical simulation of tumor development is well suited to the challenge. Building on our previous single-dose numerical simulation model of EMT6/Ro spheroids, a multi-dose irradiation response module is added and calibrated to the effective dose arising from 18 independent multi-dose treatment programs available in the experimental literature. With the developed model a constrained, non-linear, search for better performing cadidate protocols is conducted within the vicinity of two benchmarks by genetic algorithm (GA) techniques. After evaluating less than 0.01% of the potential benchmark protocol space, candidate protocols were identified by the GA which conferred an average of 9.4% (max benefit 16.5%) and 7.1% (13.3%) improvement (reduction) on tumour cell count compared to the two benchmarks, respectively. Noticing that a convergent phenomenon of the top performing protocols was their temporal synchronicity, a further series of numerical experiments was conducted with periodic time-gap protocols (10 h to 23 h), leading to the discovery that the performance of the GA search candidates could be replicated by 17-18 h periodic candidates. Further dynamic irradiation-response cell-phase analysis revealed that such periodicity cohered with latent EMT6/Ro cell-phase temporal patterning. Taken together, this study provides powerful evidence towards the hypothesis that even simple inter-fraction timing variations for a given fractional dose program may present a facile, and highly cost-effecitive means

  9. Peri-urban dairy production systems in developing countries: Characteristics, potential and opportunities for improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Devendra, C.

    2002-01-01

    Full text: Peri-urban dairy production systems in developing countries are discussed with reference to type of systems, their characteristics, potential, and opportunities for improvement. Three types of dairy systems are identified and described: smallholder systems, smallholder co-perative dairy production systems, and intensive dairy production systems. The first two systems are by far the most important, and are associated with increasing intensification. Buffaloes are especially important in South Asia, but elsewhere dairy production mainly involves Holstein-Friesian cross-bred cattle. Dairy goats are important in some countries, but are generally neglected in development programmes. The expansion and intensification of peri-urban dairy production is fuelled by increased demand for milk with associated problems of milk handling and distribution, hygiene and environmental pollution. The major constraints to production are inter alia, choice of species, breeds and availability of animals; feed resources and improved feeding systems; improved breeding, reproduction, and animal health care; management of animal manure, and organised marketing, and market outlets. These constraints provide major opportunities and challenges for research and development to increase dairy production, efficient management of natural resources, and improved livelihoods of poor farmers. Specific areas for research are identified, as also the need of a holistic focus involving interdisciplinary research and integrated natural resource management, in a shared partnership between farmers and scientists that can demonstrate increased productivity and sustainable production systems. Suggestions for performance indicators for such systems are indicated. (author)

  10. Nutrigenomics of essential oils and their potential domestic use for improving health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cayuela Sánchez, José Antonio; Elamrani, Abdelaziz

    2014-11-01

    The use of essential oils as industrial food additives is notorious, like their medicinal properties. However, their use in household food spicing is for now limited. In this work, we have made a review to reveal the nutrigenomic actions exerted by their bioactive components, to promote awareness of their modulating gene expression ability and the potential that this implies. Also considered is how essential oils can be used as flavoring and seasoning after cooking and before consumption, such as diet components which can improve human health. Genetic mechanisms involved in the medicinal properties of essential oils for food use are identified from literature. These genetic mechanisms reveal nutrigenomic actions. Reviews on the medicinal properties of essential oils have been particularly considered. A wide diversity of nutrigenomic effects from essential oils useful potentially for food spicing is reviewed. General ideas are discussed about essential oils and their properties, such as anti-inflammatory, analgesic, immunomodulatory, anticancer, hepatoprotective, hypolipidemic, anti-diabetic, antioxidant, bone-reparation, anti-depressant and mitigatory for Alzheimer's disease. The essential oils for food use are potentially promoting health agents, and, therefore, worth using as flavoring and condiments. Becoming aware of the modulating gene expression actions from essential oils is important for understanding their potential for use in household dishes as spices to improve health.

  11. Early T Cell Recognition of B Cells following Epstein-Barr Virus Infection: Identifying Potential Targets for Prophylactic Vaccination.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jill M Brooks

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Epstein-Barr virus, a B-lymphotropic herpesvirus, is the cause of infectious mononucleosis, has strong aetiologic links with several malignancies and has been implicated in certain autoimmune diseases. Efforts to develop a prophylactic vaccine to prevent or reduce EBV-associated disease have, to date, focused on the induction of neutralising antibody responses. However, such vaccines might be further improved by inducing T cell responses capable of recognising and killing recently-infected B cells. In that context, EBNA2, EBNA-LP and BHRF1 are the first viral antigens expressed during the initial stage of B cell growth transformation, yet have been poorly characterised as CD8+ T cell targets. Here we describe CD8+ T cell responses against each of these three "first wave" proteins, identifying target epitopes and HLA restricting alleles. While EBNA-LP and BHRF1 each contained one strong CD8 epitope, epitopes within EBNA2 induced immunodominant responses through several less common HLA class I alleles (e.g. B*3801 and B*5501, as well as subdominant responses through common class I alleles (e.g. B7 and C*0304. Importantly, such EBNA2-specific CD8+ T cells recognised B cells within the first day post-infection, prior to CD8+ T cells against well-characterised latent target antigens such as EBNA3B or LMP2, and effectively inhibited outgrowth of EBV-transformed B cell lines. We infer that "first wave" antigens of the growth-transforming infection, especially EBNA2, constitute potential CD8+ T cell immunogens for inclusion in prophylactic EBV vaccine design.

  12. A Literature Survey to Identify Potentially Volatile Iodine-Bearing Species Present in Off-Gas Streams

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bruffey, S. H. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Spencer, B. B. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Strachan, D. M. [Strata-G, Knoxville, TN (United States); Jubin, R. T. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Soelberg, N. R. [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Riley, B. J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2015-06-30

    Four radionuclides have been identified as being sufficiently volatile in the reprocessing of nuclear fuel that their gaseous release needs to be controlled to meet regulatory requirements (Jubin et al. 2011, 2012). These radionuclides are 3H, 14C, 85Kr, and 129I. Of these, 129I has the longest half-life and potentially high biological impact. Accordingly, control of the release of 129I is most critical with respect to the regulations for the release of radioactive material in stack emissions. It is estimated that current EPA regulations (EPA 2010) would require any reprocessing plant in the United States to limit 129I release to less than 0.05 Ci/MTIHM for a typical fuel burnup of 55 gigawatt days per metric tonne (GWd/t) (Jubin 2011). The study of inorganic iodide in off-gas systems has been almost exclusively limited to I2 and the focus of organic iodide studies has been CH3I. In this document, we provide the results of an examination of publically available literature that is relevant to the presence and sources of both inorganic and organic iodine-bearing species in reprocessing plants. We especially focus on those that have the potential to be poorly sequestered with traditional capture methodologies. Based on the results of the literature survey and some limited thermodynamic modeling, the inorganic iodine species hypoiodous acid (HOI) and iodine monochloride (ICl) were identified as potentially low-sorbing iodine species that could present in off-gas systems. Organic species of interest included both short chain alkyl iodides such as methyl iodide (CH3I) and longer alkyl iodides up to iodododecane (C10H21I). It was found that fuel dissolution may provide conditions conducive to HOI formation and has been shown to result in volatile long-chain alkyl iodides, though these may not volatilize until later in the reprocessing sequence. Solvent extraction processes were found to be significant sources of various organic iodine-bearing species; formation of these

  13. Improved effective-potential formalism for composite fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Banks, T.; Raby, S.

    1976-01-01

    We develop an effective-potential formalism for studying dynamical symmetry breaking. The potential that we calculate is single-valued and bounded from below. Our formalism incorporates a stability criterion for deciding whether the broken-symmetry solution to the theory is the physical one. In lowest-order calculations in gauge theories we find that the asymmetric theory will be stable if and only if a composite Goldstone boson can be bound. Our conclusion is that in the weak-coupling approximation there is no dynamical spontaneous breakdown in gauge theories. We then use the renormalization group to argue that, if spontaneous breakdown occurs at all, it must also occur for arbitrarily weak coupling. The renormalization group also provides us with evidence that dynamical symmetry breakdown does not occur in infrared-stable theories

  14. Improving demand response potential of a supermarket refrigeration system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Rasmus; Schwensen, John; Biegel, Benjamin

    2017-01-01

    In a smart grid the load shifting capabilities of demand-side devices such as supermarkets are of high interest. In supermarkets this potential is represented by the ability to store energy in the thermal mass of refrigerated foodstuff. To harness the full load shifting potential we propose...... a method for estimating food temperature based on measurements of evaporator expansion valve opening degree. This method requires no additional hardware or system modeling. We demonstrate the estimation method on a real supermarket display case and the applicability of knowing food temperature is shown...... through tests on a full scale supermarket refrigeration system made available by Danfoss A/S. The conducted application test shows that feedback based on food temperature can increase the demand flexibility during a step by approx. 60 % the first 70 minutes and up to 100%over the first 150 minutes...

  15. Improvement of economic potential estimation methods for enterprise with potential branch clusters use

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V.Ya. Nusinov

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The research determines that the current existing methods of enterprise’s economic potential estimation are based on the use of additive, multiplicative and rating models. It is determined that the existing methods have a row of defects. For example, not all the methods take into account the branch features of the analysis, and also the level of development of the enterprise comparatively with other enterprises. It is suggested to level such defects by an account at the estimation of potential integral level not only by branch features of enterprises activity but also by the intra-account economic clusterization of such enterprises. Scientific works which are connected with the using of clusters for the estimation of economic potential are generalized. According to the results of generalization it is determined that it is possible to distinguish 9 scientific approaches in this direction: the use of natural clusterization of enterprises with the purpose of estimation and increase of region potential; the use of natural clusterization of enterprises with the purpose of estimation and increase of industry potential; use of artificial clusterization of enterprises with the purpose of estimation and increase of region potential; use of artificial clusterization of enterprises with the purpose of estimation and increase of industry potential; the use of artificial clusterization of enterprises with the purpose of clustering potential estimation; the use of artificial clusterization of enterprises with the purpose of estimation of clustering competitiveness potential; the use of natural (artificial clusterization for the estimation of clustering efficiency; the use of natural (artificial clusterization for the increase of level at region (industries development; the use of methods of economic potential of region (industries estimation or its constituents for the construction of the clusters. It is determined that the use of clusterization method in

  16. Identifying criteria for multimodel software process improvement solutions : based on a review of current problems and initiatives

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kelemen, Z.D.; Kusters, R.J.; Trienekens, J.J.M.

    2012-01-01

    In this article, we analyze current initiatives in multimodel software process improvement and identify criteria for multimodel solutions. With multimodel, we mean the simultaneous usage of more than one quality approach (e.g. standards, methods, techniques to improve software processes). This paper

  17. Improving truck safety: Potential of weigh-in-motion technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernard Jacob

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Trucks exceeding the legal mass limits increase the risk of traffic accidents and damage to the infrastructure. They also result in unfair competition between transport modes and companies. It is therefore important to ensure truck compliance to weight regulation. New technologies are being developed for more efficient overload screening and enforcement. Weigh-in-Motion (WIM technologies allow trucks to be weighed in the traffic flow, without any disruption to operations. Much progress has been made recently to improve and implement WIM systems, which can contribute to safer and more efficient operation of trucks.

  18. In-flight food delivery and waste collection service: the passengers’ perspective and potential improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romli, F. I.; Rahman, K. Abdul; Ishak, F. D.

    2016-10-01

    Increased competition in the commercial air transportation industry has made service quality of the airlines as one of the key competitive measures to attract passengers against their rivals. In-flight services, particularly food delivery and waste collection, have a notable impact on perception of the overall airline's service quality because they are directly and interactively provided to passengers during flight. An online public survey is conducted to explore general passengers' perception of current in-flight food delivery and waste collection services, and to identify potential rooms for improvement. The obtained survey results indicate that in-flight service does have an effect on passengers' choice of airlines. Several weaknesses of the current service method and possible improvements have been established from the collected responses.

  19. Prioritize Improvement Opportunities Identified In Self-Assessment Using Multi-Criteria Fuzzy Group Decision

    OpenAIRE

    Dr.Ghassem Faraj Pour; Ali Mazloum Ali Abadi; Mehdi Alijani; Reza Amiri

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Efforts to improve the quality are one of the prerequisites for the success of individual companies and for the competitiveness of all whole companies. In the field of improvement and excellence business excellence models answer to the question that what the better organization is what goals and concepts they follow and according to what standards they behave. The EFQM excellence model can be transition from multiplicity to unity of different existing models. The most important appro...

  20. Improving the sludge conditioning potential of moringa seed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ademiluyi, Joel O.; Eze, Romanus M.

    1990-01-01

    In the search for a cheaper material to effectively condition sludge, oil-free moringa seed was prepared and tested. A Soxhlet apparatus was used to extract the oil from moringa seed ( Moringa oleifera). The oil-free seed (marc) has been found to have higher conditioning potential than the ordinary moringa seed. However, the traditional ferric chloride is still a better sludge conditioner than moringa seed marc. For the digested domestic sludge used, optimum conditioning dosages were found to be 0.6, 0.80, and 1.10% of the total solids for ferric chloride, marc of the moringa seed, and ordinary moringa seed, respectively. Since little or no operational material is lost in the extraction process, the moringa seed marc is a promising conditioner in place of the ordinary seed.

  1. Improved Interaction Potentials for Charged Residues in Proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kepp, Kasper Planeta

    2008-01-01

    Electrostatic interactions dominate the structure and free energy of biomolecules. To obtain accurate free energies involving charged groups from molecular simulations, OPLS-AA parameters have been reoptimized using Monte Carlo free energy perturbation. New parameters fit a self-consistent, exper......Electrostatic interactions dominate the structure and free energy of biomolecules. To obtain accurate free energies involving charged groups from molecular simulations, OPLS-AA parameters have been reoptimized using Monte Carlo free energy perturbation. New parameters fit a self......, TIP4P or TIP3P; i.e., each water model requires specific water-charged molecule interaction potentials. New models (models 1 and 3) are thus described for both water models. Uncertainties in relative free energies of charged residues are ~2 kcal/mol with the new parameters, due to variations in system...

  2. IDENTIFY: opportunities for improving industrial energy efficiency and mitigating global climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cornland, Deborah Wilson; Lazarus, Michael; Heaps, Charles; Hippel, David von; Hill, David [Stockholm Environment Inst., Stockholm (Sweden); Williams, Robert [United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Vienna (Austria)

    1998-09-01

    In response to a formal request by the Group of 77 and China, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) initiated a study to identify opportunities to reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases from energy-intensive industries in developing countries. The study resulted in the development of the IDENTIFY software tool which can be useful for evaluating projects under consideration for investment through Activities Implemented Jointly (AIJ). IDENTIFY consists of an Analysis tool which enables the user to evaluate and compare the costs, energy requirements, and greenhouse-gas emissions associated with scenarios of specific technology, and process options and a Technology Inventory which provides information describing energy-efficient, best-available technologies and processes that can be used to abate greenhouse-gas emissions in the most energy-intensive industrial sub-sectors as well as cross-cutting measures applicable in a range of sub-sectors. (author)

  3. Supporting Concept Extraction and Identifier Quality Improvement through Programmers' Lexicon Analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Abebe, Surafel Lemma

    2013-01-01

    Identifiers play an important role in communicating the intentions associated with the program entities they represent. The information captured in identifiers support programmers to (re-)build the “mental model” of the software and facilitates understanding. (Re-)building the “mental model” and understanding large software, however, is difficult and expensive. Besides, the effort involved in the process heavily depends on the quality of the programmers’ lexicon used to construct th...

  4. Application of biclustering of gene expression data and gene set enrichment analysis methods to identify potentially disease causing nanomaterials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Williams

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: The presence of diverse types of nanomaterials (NMs in commerce is growing at an exponential pace. As a result, human exposure to these materials in the environment is inevitable, necessitating the need for rapid and reliable toxicity testing methods to accurately assess the potential hazards associated with NMs. In this study, we applied biclustering and gene set enrichment analysis methods to derive essential features of altered lung transcriptome following exposure to NMs that are associated with lung-specific diseases. Several datasets from public microarray repositories describing pulmonary diseases in mouse models following exposure to a variety of substances were examined and functionally related biclusters of genes showing similar expression profiles were identified. The identified biclusters were then used to conduct a gene set enrichment analysis on pulmonary gene expression profiles derived from mice exposed to nano-titanium dioxide (nano-TiO2, carbon black (CB or carbon nanotubes (CNTs to determine the disease significance of these data-driven gene sets.Results: Biclusters representing inflammation (chemokine activity, DNA binding, cell cycle, apoptosis, reactive oxygen species (ROS and fibrosis processes were identified. All of the NM studies were significant with respect to the bicluster related to chemokine activity (DAVID; FDR p-value = 0.032. The bicluster related to pulmonary fibrosis was enriched in studies where toxicity induced by CNT and CB studies was investigated, suggesting the potential for these materials to induce lung fibrosis. The pro-fibrogenic potential of CNTs is well established. Although CB has not been shown to induce fibrosis, it induces stronger inflammatory, oxidative stress and DNA damage responses than nano-TiO2 particles.Conclusion: The results of the analysis correctly identified all NMs to be inflammogenic and only CB and CNTs as potentially fibrogenic. In addition to identifying several

  5. Potential for improvement in estimation of solar diffuse irradiance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muneer, T.; Munawwar, S.

    2006-01-01

    Most of the meteorological stations around the world measure global irradiation and provide information on weather elements. Diffuse radiation measurement, however, is unavailable for many of those sites. This accentuates the need to estimate it whereupon it can be used for the simulation of solar applications. This paper explores the role of synoptic information, e.g. sunshine fraction, cloud cover and air mass on the basic k-k t relationship for nine sites across the globe. The influence on the k-k t regressions is studied qualitatively, and the inclusion of these parameters is suggested based on that. Thus, it is recommended to use the complementary data usually provided with the database apart from the global irradiation in order to estimate the diffuse irradiation more accurately. It was found by analysing each synoptic parameter individually that while the sunshine fraction showed a strong bearing, it was followed closely by cloud cover. Air mass, on the other hand, was found to be a weak parameter for general estimation of diffuse radiation. It was concluded that air mass if coupled with other synoptic parameters might improve the estimation accuracy, but it does not show much promise on its own when used with the global irradiation

  6. Potential of irradiation technology for improved shellfish sanitation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mallett, J.C.; Beghian, L.E.; Metcalf, T.G.; Kaylor, J.D.

    1991-01-01

    Ionizing radiation is shown capable of serving as an effective sanitizing treatment improving the sanitary quality of shellfish and providing an increased margin of safety for shellfish consumers. 60Co irradiation of the hard-shelled clam, Mercenaria mercenaria, and the oyster, Crassostrea virginica, significantly reduced virus carriage numbers without unduly affecting shellfish survival rates or desirable organoleptic qualities. A D10 value of 2 kGy was determined for depletion of hepatitis A virus in clams and oysters as measured by in situ hybridization fluorescent foci and cytopathology enumeration methods. A D10 value of 2.4 kGy was determined for depletion of rotavirus SA11 in clams and oysters as measured by a plaque forming unit enumeration method. Study results showed ionizing radiation capable of providing an extra, highly effective safeguard of shellfish sanitary quality when combined with traditional depuration treatment. Data drawn from other studies is introduced which shows D10 values as low as 1.0 kGy effectively eliminate Vibrio cholerae, and V. parahemolyticus, from shellfish

  7. Molecular analysis of faecal samples from birds to identify potential crop pests and useful biocontrol agents in natural areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, R A; Symondson, W O C; Thomas, R J

    2015-06-01

    Wild habitats adjoining farmland are potentially valuable sources of natural enemies, but also of pests. Here we tested the utility of birds as 'sampling devices', to identify the diversity of prey available to predators and particularly to screen for pests and natural enemies using natural ecosystems as refugia. Here we used PCR to amplify prey DNA from three sympatric songbirds foraging on small invertebrates in Phragmites reedbed ecosystems, namely the Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus scirpaceus), Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) and Cetti's Warbler (Cettia cetti). A recently described general invertebrate primer pair was used for the first time to analyse diets. Amplicons were cloned and sequenced, then identified by reference to the Barcoding of Life Database and to our own sequences obtained from fresh invertebrates. Forty-five distinct prey DNA sequences were obtained from 11 faecal samples, of which 39 could be identified to species or genus. Targeting three warbler species ensured that species-specific differences in prey choice broadened the range of prey taken. Amongst the prey found in reedbeds were major pests (including the tomato moth Lacanobia oleracea) as well as many potentially valuable natural enemies including aphidophagous hoverflies and braconid wasps. Given the mobility of birds, this approach provides a practical way of sampling a whole habitat at once, providing growers with information on possible invasion by locally resident pests and the colonization potential of natural enemies from local natural habitats.

  8. Using a service sector segmented approach to identify community stakeholders who can improve access to suicide prevention services for veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthieu, Monica M; Gardiner, Giovanina; Ziegemeier, Ellen; Buxton, Miranda

    2014-04-01

    Veterans in need of social services may access many different community agencies within the public and private sectors. Each of these settings has the potential to be a pipeline for attaining needed health, mental health, and benefits services; however, many service providers lack information on how to conceptualize where Veterans go for services within their local community. This article describes a conceptual framework for outreach that uses a service sector segmented approach. This framework was developed to aid recruitment of a provider-based sample of stakeholders (N = 70) for a study on improving access to the Department of Veterans Affairs and community-based suicide prevention services. Results indicate that although there are statistically significant differences in the percent of Veterans served by the different service sectors (F(9, 55) = 2.71, p = 0.04), exposure to suicidal Veterans and providers' referral behavior is consistent across the sectors. Challenges to using this framework include isolating the appropriate sectors for targeted outreach efforts. The service sector segmented approach holds promise for identifying and referring at-risk Veterans in need of services. Reprint & Copyright © 2014 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  9. Identifying critical issues in recreation planning and management: improving the management-research partnership

    Science.gov (United States)

    John H. Schomaker; David W. Lime

    1988-01-01

    The "nominal group" process is a proven technique to systematically arrive at a consensus about critical information needs in recreation planning and management. Using this process, 41 managers who attended a 1983 conference on river management identified 114 specific information needs grouped under 11 general questions. Clearly, some concerns of...

  10. Operational practices of lean manufacturing: Potentiating environmental improvements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pinto, Marcos José Alves Junior; Mendes, Juliana Veiga

    2017-07-01

    Purpose: The objective of this paper is to investigate how environmental improvements can be achieved through operational practices of Lean Manufacturing. Design/methodology/approach: A literature review was conducted to analyze the relationship between operational practices of Lean and reduction of environmental impact in organizational contexts. Verified theoretically, this relationship was observed in a company of the electronics industry, through an exploratory research which contemplated a mixed approach. The adopted research method consisted of a single case study, by providing greater depth and detail of the study. Utilized a research protocol, validated test pilot. The instruments for data collection were semi-structured interviews, direct observation and document analysis. The information was examined qualitatively considering the technique for content analysis. Findings: As a result of the study, it was found that there is evidence for the existence of relationship between the practices of Lean, for example, Kaizen, PDCA (plan, do, check, act), Ishikawa Diagram, Poka-Yoke, Standardized Work and Value Stream Mapping, with the reduction of environmental impacts of an organization. This reduction was observed after application of these practices that resulted in the reduction of energy consumption, water and waste generation. These results were accounted for financially, contributing to a reduction of annual costs by about US$ 20,900. Originality/value: The study presents in detail, the application of operational practices of Lean Manufacturing, with an effective view to reducing the environmental impact and cost reduction. The literature review, a detailed description of the application process and financial results are important information that contributes to the scientific studies that address traditional operating practices and the search for better environmental performance.

  11. Operational practices of lean manufacturing: Potentiating environmental improvements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos José Alves Pinto Junior

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: The objective of this paper is to investigate how environmental improvements can be achieved through operational practices of Lean Manufacturing. Design/methodology/approach: A literature review was conducted to analyze the relationship between operational practices of Lean and reduction of environmental impact in organizational contexts. Verified theoretically, this relationship was observed in a company of the electronics industry, through an exploratory research which contemplated a mixed approach. The adopted research method consisted of a single case study, by providing greater depth and detail of the study. Utilized a research protocol, validated test pilot. The instruments for data collection were semi-structured interviews, direct observation and document analysis. The information was examined qualitatively considering the technique for content analysis. Findings: As a result of the study, it was found that there is evidence for the existence of relationship between the practices of Lean, for example, Kaizen, PDCA (plan, do, check, act, Ishikawa Diagram, Poka-Yoke, Standardized Work and Value Stream Mapping, with the reduction of environmental impacts of an organization. This reduction was observed after application of these practices that resulted in the reduction of energy consumption, water and waste generation. These results were accounted for financially, contributing to a reduction of annual costs by about US$ 20,900. Originality/value: The study presents in detail, the application of operational practices of Lean Manufacturing, with an effective view to reducing the environmental impact and cost reduction. The literature review, a detailed description of the application process and financial results are important information that contributes to the scientific studies that address traditional operating practices and the search for better environmental performance.

  12. Operational practices of lean manufacturing: Potentiating environmental improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pinto, Marcos José Alves Junior; Mendes, Juliana Veiga

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The objective of this paper is to investigate how environmental improvements can be achieved through operational practices of Lean Manufacturing. Design/methodology/approach: A literature review was conducted to analyze the relationship between operational practices of Lean and reduction of environmental impact in organizational contexts. Verified theoretically, this relationship was observed in a company of the electronics industry, through an exploratory research which contemplated a mixed approach. The adopted research method consisted of a single case study, by providing greater depth and detail of the study. Utilized a research protocol, validated test pilot. The instruments for data collection were semi-structured interviews, direct observation and document analysis. The information was examined qualitatively considering the technique for content analysis. Findings: As a result of the study, it was found that there is evidence for the existence of relationship between the practices of Lean, for example, Kaizen, PDCA (plan, do, check, act), Ishikawa Diagram, Poka-Yoke, Standardized Work and Value Stream Mapping, with the reduction of environmental impacts of an organization. This reduction was observed after application of these practices that resulted in the reduction of energy consumption, water and waste generation. These results were accounted for financially, contributing to a reduction of annual costs by about US$ 20,900. Originality/value: The study presents in detail, the application of operational practices of Lean Manufacturing, with an effective view to reducing the environmental impact and cost reduction. The literature review, a detailed description of the application process and financial results are important information that contributes to the scientific studies that address traditional operating practices and the search for better environmental performance.

  13. A Practical Approach To Identify and Solve Problems: Continuous Improvement Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgess, Michael; And Others

    The current pressures of reduced government funding, lower enrollments, and greater scrutiny by governing boards require institutions of higher education to redesign processes and systems to survive. Despite resistance to Total Quality Management (TQM) in academia, it can provide the tools to implement systemic change and quality improvement.…

  14. Bob Bear: A Strategy for Improving Behaviors of Preschoolers Identified as At Risk or Developmentally Delayed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael, Meredith; Meese, Ruth L.; Keith, Stephen; Mathews, Rachel

    2009-01-01

    Social learning theory, sociodramatic play, and the use of puppets and stuffed animals may be beneficial for improving social behaviors of preschoolers with and without disabilities. Therefore, this action research study is developed on the belief that a stuffed animal (Bob Bear) will enhance appropriate behaviors for preschool children when used…

  15. Using operating experience and a cause coding tree to identify improvements for nuclear process control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paradies, M.W.; Busch, D.A.

    1987-01-01

    This paper outlines a systematic approach to identification of the root causes of incidents and the use of that information to improve nuclear plant process control. The paper describes how the system was developed, how the system is used, and how the system has been accepted

  16. Novel peptide marker corresponding to salivary protein gSG6 potentially identifies exposure to Anopheles bites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Poinsignon

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available In order to improve malaria control, and under the aegis of WHO recommendations, many efforts are being devoted to developing new tools for identifying geographic areas with high risk of parasite transmission. Evaluation of the human antibody response to arthropod salivary proteins could be an epidemiological indicator of exposure to vector bites, and therefore to risk of pathogen transmission. In the case of malaria, which is transmitted only by anopheline mosquitoes, maximal specificity could be achieved through identification of immunogenic proteins specific to the Anopheles genus. The objective of the present study was to determine whether the IgG response to the Anopheles gambiae gSG6 protein, from its recombinant form to derived synthetic peptides, could be an immunological marker of exposure specific to Anopheles gambiae bites.Specific IgG antibodies to recombinant gSG6 protein were observed in children living in a Senegalese area exposed to malaria. With the objective of optimizing Anopheles specificity and reproducibility, we designed five gSG6-based peptide sequences using a bioinformatic approach, taking into consideration i their potential antigenic properties and ii the absence of cross-reactivity with protein sequences of other arthropods/organisms. The specific anti-peptide IgG antibody response was evaluated in exposed children. The five gSG6 peptides showed differing antigenic properties, with gSG6-P1 and gSG6-P2 exhibiting the highest antigenicity. However, a significant increase in the specific IgG response during the rainy season and a positive association between the IgG level and the level of exposure to Anopheles gambiae bites was significant only for gSG6-P1.This step-by-step approach suggests that gSG6-P1 could be an optimal candidate marker for evaluating exposure to Anopheles gambiae bites. This marker could be employed as a geographic indicator, like remote sensing techniques, for mapping the risk of malaria. It could

  17. An improved method to identify grain boundary creep cavitation in 316H austenitic stainless steel

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, B., E-mail: b.chen@bristol.ac.uk [Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Bristol, Bristol BS8 1TR (United Kingdom); Flewitt, P.E.J. [Interface Analysis Centre, University of Bristol, 121 St. Michael' s Hill, Bristol BS2 8BS (United Kingdom); H.H. Wills Physics Laboratory, University of Bristol, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TL (United Kingdom); Smith, D.J. [Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Bristol, Bristol BS8 1TR (United Kingdom); Jones, C.P. [Interface Analysis Centre, University of Bristol, 121 St. Michael' s Hill, Bristol BS2 8BS (United Kingdom)

    2011-04-15

    Inter-granular creep cavitation damage has been observed in an ex-service 316H austenitic stainless steel thick section weldment. Focused ion beam cross-section milling combined with ion channelling contrast imaging is used to identify the cavitation damage, which is usually associated with the grain boundary carbide precipitates in this material. The results demonstrate that this technique can identify, in particular, the early stage of grain boundary creep cavitation unambiguously in materials with complex phase constituents. -- Research highlights: {yields} FIB milling plus ion channelling contrast optimise the observation of cavity. {yields} Identification of the creep cavities unambiguously, using an FIB technique. {yields} The FIB technique can retain the polyhedral shape of cavity. {yields} Various stages of creep cavitation can be observed, using the FIB technique.

  18. Temperature dependence in interatomic potentials and an improved potential for Ti

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ackland, G J

    2012-01-01

    The process of deriving an interatomic potentials represents an attempt to integrate out the electronic degrees of freedom from the full quantum description of a condensed matter system. In practice it is the derivatives of the interatomic potentials which are used in molecular dynamics, as a model for the forces on a system. These forces should be the derivative of the free energy of the electronic system, which includes contributions from the entropy of the electronic states. This free energy is weakly temperature dependent, and although this can be safely neglected in many cases there are some systems where the electronic entropy plays a significant role. Here a method is proposed to incorporate electronic entropy in the Sommerfeld approximation into empirical potentials. The method is applied as a correction to an existing potential for titanium. Thermal properties of the new model are calculated, and a simple method for fixing the melting point and solid-solid phase transition temperature for existing models fitted to zero temperature data is presented.

  19. Exome sequencing identifies rare deleterious mutations in DNA repair genes FANCC and BLM as potential breast cancer susceptibility alleles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ella R Thompson

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Despite intensive efforts using linkage and candidate gene approaches, the genetic etiology for the majority of families with a multi-generational breast cancer predisposition is unknown. In this study, we used whole-exome sequencing of thirty-three individuals from 15 breast cancer families to identify potential predisposing genes. Our analysis identified families with heterozygous, deleterious mutations in the DNA repair genes FANCC and BLM, which are responsible for the autosomal recessive disorders Fanconi Anemia and Bloom syndrome. In total, screening of all exons in these genes in 438 breast cancer families identified three with truncating mutations in FANCC and two with truncating mutations in BLM. Additional screening of FANCC mutation hotspot exons identified one pathogenic mutation among an additional 957 breast cancer families. Importantly, none of the deleterious mutations were identified among 464 healthy controls and are not reported in the 1,000 Genomes data. Given the rarity of Fanconi Anemia and Bloom syndrome disorders among Caucasian populations, the finding of multiple deleterious mutations in these critical DNA repair genes among high-risk breast cancer families is intriguing and suggestive of a predisposing role. Our data demonstrate the utility of intra-family exome-sequencing approaches to uncover cancer predisposition genes, but highlight the major challenge of definitively validating candidates where the incidence of sporadic disease is high, germline mutations are not fully penetrant, and individual predisposition genes may only account for a tiny proportion of breast cancer families.

  20. Study protocol: identifying and delivering point-of-care information to improve care coordination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hysong, Sylvia J; Che, Xinxuan; Weaver, Sallie J; Petersen, Laura A

    2015-10-19

    The need for deliberately coordinated care is noted by many national-level organizations. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently transitioned primary care clinics nationwide into Patient Aligned Care Teams (PACTs) to provide more accessible, coordinated, comprehensive, and patient-centered care. To better serve this purpose, PACTs must be able to successfully sequence and route interdependent tasks to appropriate team members while also maintaining collective situational awareness (coordination). Although conceptual frameworks of care coordination exist, few explicitly articulate core behavioral markers of coordination or the related information needs of team members attempting to synchronize complex care processes across time for a shared patient population. Given this gap, we partnered with a group of frontline primary care personnel at ambulatory care sites to identify the specific information needs of PACT members that will enable them to coordinate their efforts to provide effective, coordinated care. The study has three objectives: (1) development of measurable, prioritized point-of-care criteria for effective PACT coordination; (2) identifying the specific information needed at the point of care to optimize coordination; and (3) assessing the effect of adopting the aforementioned coordination standards on PACT clinicians' coordination behaviors. The study consists of three phases. In phase 1, we will employ the Productivity Measurement and Enhancement System (ProMES), a structured approach to performance measure creation from industrial/organizational psychology, to develop coordination measures with a design team of 6-10 primary care personnel; in phase 2, we will conduct focus groups with the phase 1 design team to identify point-of-care information needs. Phase 3 is a two-arm field experiment (n PACT = 28/arm); intervention arm PACTs will receive monthly feedback reports using the measures developed in phase 1 and attend brief monthly

  1. Reactive inspection response of NRC Region III to potential technical deficiencies identified in recent Nuclear Air Cleaning Conference papers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gill, C.F.

    1987-01-01

    In order to effectively meet its responsibility to protect the public health and safety, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) nuclear power plant licensing and inspection programs respond to potential technical deficiencies identified by conference and professional society meeting papers when deemed appropriate. The NRC staff's response mechanisms for such technical deficiencies include: generic letters, Bulletins, Information Notices, Standard Review Plan (NUREG-0800) revisions, docketed Final Safety Analysis Report (FSAR) questions, special studies, special (reactive) inspection, and inspection program revisions. This paper describes reactive inspection efforts by Region III in response to potential technical deficiencies identified in recent air cleaning conference papers, including: post-accident effluent sample line deposition losses; failure to implement good engineering practices in the design, construction, and testing of Nuclear Air Treatment Systems (NATS); filter bypass via filter housing drain lines; spinster carbon degradation; use of silicone sealants and other temporary patching material in NATS; filter housing fire protection deluge system problems; lack of charcoal batch traceability; Quality Assurance records problems involving equipment, vendor, filter, and personnel qualifications; inadequate ANSI/ASME N510 acceptance criteria and tests; and failure to adequately demonstrate control room habitability per 10 CFR 50, Appendix A, General Design Criterion-19. Region III inspections indicate that many of these deficiencies appear to be prevalent. Inspection findings and utility responses to the findings are discussed. NRC Region III and Headquarters programmatic reactions to the identified generic problem areas are also discussed

  2. Profiling of the Tox21 Chemical Collection for Mitochondrial Function to Identify Compounds that Acutely Decrease Mitochondrial Membrane Potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Attene-Ramos, Matias S.; Huang, Ruili; Michael, Sam; Witt, Kristine L.; Richard, Ann; Tice, Raymond R.; Simeonov, Anton; Austin, Christopher P.

    2014-01-01

    Background: Mitochondrial dysfunction has been implicated in the pathogenesis of a variety of disorders including cancer, diabetes, and neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases. Understanding whether different environmental chemicals and druglike molecules impact mitochondrial function represents an initial step in predicting exposure-related toxicity and defining a possible role for such compounds in the onset of various diseases. Objectives: We sought to identify individual chemicals and general structural features associated with changes in mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP). Methods: We used a multiplexed [two end points in one screen; MMP and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) content] quantitative high throughput screening (qHTS) approach combined with informatics tools to screen the Tox21 library of 10,000 compounds (~ 8,300 unique chemicals) at 15 concentrations each in triplicate to identify chemicals and structural features that are associated with changes in MMP in HepG2 cells. Results: Approximately 11% of the compounds (913 unique compounds) decreased MMP after 1 hr of treatment without affecting cell viability (ATP content). In addition, 309 compounds decreased MMP over a concentration range that also produced measurable cytotoxicity [half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) in MMP assay/IC50 in viability assay ≤ 3; p Tice RR, Simeonov A, Austin CP, Xia M. 2015. Profiling of the Tox21 chemical collection for mitochondrial function to identify compounds that acutely decrease mitochondrial membrane potential. Environ Health Perspect 123:49–56; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1408642 PMID:25302578

  3. Identifying Potential Conservation Corridors Along the Mongolia-Russia Border Using Resource Selection Functions: A Case Study on Argali Sheep

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Buyanaa Chimeddorj

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The disruption of animal movements is known to affect wildlife populations, particularly large bodied, free-ranging mammals that require large geographic ranges to survive. Corridors commonly connect fragmented wildlife populations and their habitats, yet identifying corridors rarely uses data on habitat selection and movements of target species. New technologies and analytical tools make it possible to better integrate landscape patterns with spatial behavioral data. We show how resource selection functions can describe habitat suitability using continuous and multivariate metrics to determine potential wildlife movement corridors. During 2005–2010, we studied movements of argali sheep ( Ovis ammon near the Mongolia-Russia border using radio-telemetry and modeled their spatial distribution in relation to landscape features to create a spatially explicit habitat suitability surface to identify potential transboundary conservation corridors. Argali sheep habitat selection in western Mongolia positively correlated with elevation, ruggedness index, and distance to border. In other words, argali were tended use areas with higher elevation, rugged topography, and distances farther from the international border. We suggest that these spatial modeling approaches offer ways to design and identify wildlife corridors more objectively and holistically, and can be applied to many other target species.

  4. Environmental isotope and geophysical techniques to identify groundwater potential zones in drought prone areas of Amravati District, Maharashtra, India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jacob, Noble

    2017-01-01

    The groundwater potential of Anjangaon village in Amaravati district of Maharashtra is generally poor and the water quality is saline in most of the places. Farmers dig open wells (up to 30 m depth) and drill bore wells (100-150 m depth) for domestic and irrigation purposes. Most of the wells failed and farmers are struggling for fresh water in this region. To evaluate the groundwater recharge and to identify the groundwater potential zones an environmental isotope and geophysical study was carried out. Water samples were collected from rain, springs, open wells, bore wells and detention tanks and measured for environmental isotopes such as "1"8O, "2H and "3H. Isotope results indicate that the groundwater is getting modern component of recharge from the rain as well as from the detention tanks. The percentage contributions from the detention tanks were estimated to be about 40 to 90 %. In the southern part of the Anjagaon village, an electrical resistivity survey of the geological formation was carried out and a groundwater potential zone was delineated at 45m depth. The farmers were asked to drill bore wells at the identified depth. The drilled five bore wells yielded perennial source of good quality water

  5. Identifying Motivation of the Local Governments to Improve the Sustainability Transparency

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrés NAVARRO GALERA

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper examines the sustainability tran-sparency of governments, i.e., the disclosure of information on the sustainability of their ac-tions. To do so, we identify contributory factors to the online disclosure of environmental, social, economic and general information by local gov-ernments in Nordic countries. Linear regression analysis was used to identify factors inf uencing the online dissemination of government infor-mation on sustainability; a factor analysis, as a precursor to linear regression, led us to reduce 14 explanatory variables to four factors: f nancial risk, demography, professional qualif cations and local government resources. The results obtained show that local f -nancial priorities have a greater impact on the sustainability-related content of governmental websites than does concern for the needs of the population. Furthermore, an organization’s dis-closure of its f nancial risks, together with greater awareness of stakeholders’ demands, could pro-mote transparency in the f eld of environmental, social and economic sustainability, while local demographic characteristics could foster the publication of information on environmental sus-tainability.

  6. Regression Trees Identify Relevant Interactions: Can This Improve the Predictive Performance of Risk Adjustment?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchner, Florian; Wasem, Jürgen; Schillo, Sonja

    2017-01-01

    Risk equalization formulas have been refined since their introduction about two decades ago. Because of the complexity and the abundance of possible interactions between the variables used, hardly any interactions are considered. A regression tree is used to systematically search for interactions, a methodologically new approach in risk equalization. Analyses are based on a data set of nearly 2.9 million individuals from a major German social health insurer. A two-step approach is applied: In the first step a regression tree is built on the basis of the learning data set. Terminal nodes characterized by more than one morbidity-group-split represent interaction effects of different morbidity groups. In the second step the 'traditional' weighted least squares regression equation is expanded by adding interaction terms for all interactions detected by the tree, and regression coefficients are recalculated. The resulting risk adjustment formula shows an improvement in the adjusted R 2 from 25.43% to 25.81% on the evaluation data set. Predictive ratios are calculated for subgroups affected by the interactions. The R 2 improvement detected is only marginal. According to the sample level performance measures used, not involving a considerable number of morbidity interactions forms no relevant loss in accuracy. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  7. How to improve healthcare? Identify, nurture and embed individuals and teams with "deep smarts".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eljiz, Kathy; Greenfield, David; Molineux, John; Sloan, Terry

    2018-03-19

    Purpose Unlocking and transferring skills and capabilities in individuals to the teams they work within, and across, is the key to positive organisational development and improved patient care. Using the "deep smarts" model, the purpose of this paper is to examine these issues. Design/methodology/approach The "deep smarts" model is described, reviewed and proposed as a way of transferring knowledge and capabilities within healthcare organisations. Findings Effective healthcare delivery is achieved through, and continues to require, integrative care involving numerous, dispersed service providers. In the space of overlapping organisational boundaries, there is a need for "deep smarts" people who act as "boundary spanners". These are critical integrative, networking roles employing clinical, organisational and people skills across multiple settings. Research limitations/implications Studies evaluating the barriers and enablers to the application of the deep smarts model and 13 knowledge development strategies proposed are required. Such future research will empirically and contemporary ground our understanding of organisational development in modern complex healthcare settings. Practical implications An organisation with "deep smarts" people - in managerial, auxiliary and clinical positions - has a greater capacity for integration and achieving improved patient-centred care. Originality/value In total, 13 developmental strategies, to transfer individual capabilities into organisational capability, are proposed. These strategies are applicable to different contexts and challenges faced by individuals and teams in complex healthcare organisations.

  8. An improved approach to identify irradiated dog feed by electron paramagnetic resonance study and thermoluminescence measurements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sanyal, Bhaskar, E-mail: bhaskar_sanyal@rediffmail.co [Food Technology Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai-400 085 (India); Chawla, S.P.; Sharma, Arun [Food Technology Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai-400 085 (India)

    2011-05-15

    In the present study, probably for the first time, a detailed analysis of the radiation induced radical species and thermoluminescence measurements of irradiated dog feed are reported. The EPR spectrum of non-irradiated ready-to-eat dog feed was characterized by singlet g=2.0047{+-}0.0003. Irradiated samples exhibited a complex EPR spectrum. During high power (50.0 mW) EPR spectroscopy, a visible change in the shape of the EPR spectrum was observed and characterized by EPR spectrum simulation technique. An axially symmetric anisotropic signal with g{sub ||}=2.0028 and g{sub perpendicular}=1.9976 was identified. However, a negligible change in the matrix of irradiated edible dog chew was observed using EPR spectroscopy. Therefore, thermoluminescence study of the isolated minerals from dog chew was carried out. The composition of the poly-minerals was studied using SEM and EDX analysis and a complete verdict on identification of irradiation is proposed.

  9. An improved approach to identify irradiated dog feed by electron paramagnetic resonance study and thermoluminescence measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sanyal, Bhaskar; Chawla, S.P.; Sharma, Arun

    2011-01-01

    In the present study, probably for the first time, a detailed analysis of the radiation induced radical species and thermoluminescence measurements of irradiated dog feed are reported. The EPR spectrum of non-irradiated ready-to-eat dog feed was characterized by singlet g=2.0047±0.0003. Irradiated samples exhibited a complex EPR spectrum. During high power (50.0 mW) EPR spectroscopy, a visible change in the shape of the EPR spectrum was observed and characterized by EPR spectrum simulation technique. An axially symmetric anisotropic signal with g || =2.0028 and g perpendicular =1.9976 was identified. However, a negligible change in the matrix of irradiated edible dog chew was observed using EPR spectroscopy. Therefore, thermoluminescence study of the isolated minerals from dog chew was carried out. The composition of the poly-minerals was studied using SEM and EDX analysis and a complete verdict on identification of irradiation is proposed.

  10. Techniques and methodologies to identify potential generated industries of NORM in Angola Republic and evaluate its impacts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diogo, José Manuel Sucumula

    2017-01-01

    Numerous steps have been taken worldwide to identify and quantify the radiological risks associated with the mining of ores containing Naturally Occurrence Radioactive Material (NORM), often resulting in unnecessary exposures to individuals and high environmental damage, with devastating consequences for the health of workers and damage to the economy of many countries due to a lack of regulations or inadequate regulations. For these and other reasons, the objective of this work was to identify industrial potential generating NORM in the Republic of Angola and to estimate its radiological environmental impacts. To achieve this objective, we studied the theoretical aspects, identified the main internationally recognized industrial companies that as generate by NORM. The Brazilian experience in the regulatory aspect was observed in the evaluation criteria to classify industries that generate NORM, the methods of mining and its radiological environmental impacts, as well as the main techniques applied to evaluate the concentrations of radionuclides in a specific environmental matrix and/or a NORM sample. The study approach allowed the elaboration of a NORM map for the main provinces of Angola, establishing the evaluation criteria for implementing the Radiation Protection Plan in the extractive industry, establishing measures to control ionizing radiation in mining, identifying and quantifying radionuclides present in samples of lees oil. However, in order to assess adequately the radiological environmental impact of the NORM industry, it is not enough to identify them, it is important to know the origin, quantify the radioactive material released as liquid and gaseous effluents, identify the main routes of exposure and examine how this material spreads into the environment until it reaches man. (author)

  11. Target based screening of small molecule library identifies pregnelonene, a Nrf2 agonist, as a potential radioprotector in zebrafish

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Joshi, Jayadev; Ghosh, Subhajit; Dimri, Manali; Shrivastava, Nitisha; Indracanti, Prem Kumar; Ray, Jharna

    2014-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species, cellular oxidative stress, tissue inflammation and cell death are the downstream consequences of radiation exposures which ultimately could lead to organism death. Present study aims at identifying potential targets and screening of small molecule compound library for identifying novel and effective radioprotectors. In-silco analysis of known radioprotectors revealed three main function, antioxidant, anti-inflammation and antiapoptosis. In this study, a collection of small molecules (John Hopkins Clinical Compound Library, JHCCL) were screened for these different functions using the biological activity database of NCBI with the help of in-house developed python script. Further, filtering of the JHCCL was done by searching for molecules which are known to be active against target of radiobiological significance, Nrf-2. Close observation of potential hits identified, pregnenolone, as an Nrf-2 agonist which was further evaluated for radioprotection in zebrafish model. Pregnenolone rendered significant protection (at 40 μM; added 1 hour prior to 20 Gy gamma radiation) in terms of damage manifestations (pericardial edema, microcephaly, micropthalmia, yolk sac resorption, curvature of spine, blood flow, body length, heart-beat, blood clot, roughness of skin) and survival advantage (60%) when compared to irradiated control. Further, the ability of pregnenolone to act as a neuroprotectant was also carried out using in-house developed software for assessing neuromotor functions. In comparison to radiation alone group, pregnenolone was found to possess significant neuroactive functions and diminished radiation induced neuronal impairment. Over all these results suggests that pregnenolone is an effective radioprotector which warrants further investigation for validation of its radioprotective action in higher vertebrates. Apart from that the utility of approach to screen out bioactivity data base of various chemical compound libraries for possible

  12. Trauma patient discharge and care transition experiences: Identifying opportunities for quality improvement in trauma centres.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gotlib Conn, Lesley; Zwaiman, Ashley; DasGupta, Tracey; Hales, Brigette; Watamaniuk, Aaron; Nathens, Avery B

    2018-01-01

    Challenges delivering quality care are especially salient during hospital discharge and care transitions. Severely injured patients discharged from a trauma centre will go either home, to rehabilitation or another acute care hospital with complex management needs. This purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of trauma patients and families treated in a regional academic trauma centre to better understand and improve their discharge and care transition experiences. A qualitative study using inductive thematic analysis was conducted between March and October 2016. Telephone interviews were conducted with trauma patients and/or a family member after discharge from the trauma centre. Data collection and analysis were completed inductively and iteratively consistent with a qualitative approach. Twenty-four interviews included 19 patients and 7 family members. Participants' experiences drew attention to discharge and transfer processes that either (1) Fostered quality discharge or (2) Impeded quality discharge. Fostering quality discharge was ward staff preparation efforts; establishing effective care continuity; and, adequate emotional support. Impeding discharge quality was perceived pressure to leave the hospital; imposed transfer decisions; and, sub-optimal communication and coordination around discharge. Patient-provider communication was viewed to be driven by system, rather than patient need. Inter-facility information gaps raised concern about receiving facilities' ability to care for injured patients. The quality of trauma patient discharge and transition experiences is undermined by system- and ward-level processes that compete, rather than align, in producing high quality patient-centred discharge. Local improvement solutions focused on modifiable factors within the trauma centre include patient-oriented discharge education and patient navigation; however, these approaches alone may be insufficient to enhance patient experiences. Trauma patients

  13. Decision tool for clients with medical issues: a framework for identifying driving risk and potential to return to driving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickerson, Anne E; Bédard, Michel

    2014-04-01

    This paper offers occupational therapy generalists and specialists a new framework by which to consider clinical evaluation data and an older adult's driving risk and potential to resume this previously learned skill. Based on Michon's model describing the hierarchy of driving levels, clinical questions identify the factors that may affect a client's fitness to drive. The first part is intended to support clinical judgment of whether a client needs a driving evaluation by a driver rehabilitation specialist. The second part offers a framework to organize clinical data that are already known and determine what other evaluation information is justified and necessary to make a driving recommendation. Methods and rational for use are discussed.

  14. Student evaluation of a primary care clerkship: quality assurance and identification of potential for improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Himmel Wolfgang

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In Germany, like many other countries, general practice clerkships have only recently become mandatory during medical education. The biggest challenges for the organisation of such clerkships are achieving a minimum level of standardisation, and developing and maintaining a system of quality assurance. The aim of this study is to assess the instructional quality in teaching practices using a benchmark system. Methods Before commencing, students anonymously assessed the importance of core aspects of the mandatory primary care clerkship. After the clerkship, they evaluated learning opportunities and teaching performance. Based on this data, a benchmark system was developed to identify areas of strength and weakness for all practices as well as individual teaching practices. Results A total of 695 students evaluated 97 general practices belonging to a teaching network. Prior to the clerkship, most students considered recognition of frequent diseases (85% and communication skills (65% the most important learning goals. After the clerkship, nearly 90% of students confirmed that the general practitioner (GP was good or excellent at teaching these two goals but only two-thirds thought the GP's teaching performance good or excellent in preventive medicine and screening. In an exemplary analysis, we identified the 2 best and the 2 worst practices that consistently received scores far above or below average, respectively. Conclusion We were able to identify areas of weakness in teaching and identified specific GPs who did not meet the students' needs and expectations. This evaluation seems to be a useful quality assurance tool to identify the potential for improvement and faculty development.

  15. Identifying elements of job satisfaction to improve retention rates in healthcare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamberth, Becky; Comello, Robert J

    2005-01-01

    According to the American Hospital Association, by the year 2010, the United States will need 1,000,000 qualified nurses to care for patients, an additional 75,000 licensed radiologic technologists, and several other ancillary medical staff employees. A number of health professionals question why there is such a significant shortage--especially considering that many facilities; are implementing cost initiatives and insurance companies are decreasing the length of patient hospital stays. One specific factor may not be fully appreciated: Although the length of stay is decreasing,the acuity level of the patient is increasing. The number and types of available opportunities also contribute to the staffing shortage. Hospitals and healthcare facilities are now working diligently to address the crisis and answer that one very important question: How can they keep employees satisfied and willing commit long-term to the organization? This review focuses on identifying those key variables of job satisfaction that will lead to long-term retention of healthcare workers, including money, work environment, performance feedback, advancement opportunities, group cohesion, and relationships with management. It also discusses the effects of demographic characteristics such as age and gender on job satisfaction.

  16. Identifying lipidic emulsomes for improved oxcarbazepine brain targeting: In vitro and rat in vivo studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Zaafarany, Ghada M; Soliman, Mahmoud E; Mansour, Samar; Awad, Gehanne A S

    2016-04-30

    Lipid-based nanovectors offer effective carriers for brain delivery by improving drug potency and reducing off-target effects. Emulsomes are nano-triglyceride (TG) carriers formed of lipid cores supported by at least one phospholipid (PC) sheath. Due to their surface active properties, PC forms bilayers at the aqueous interface, thereby enabling encapsulated drug to benefit from better bioavailability and stability. Emulsomes of oxcarbazepine (OX) were prepared, aimed to offer nanocarriers for nasal delivery for brain targeting. Different TG cores (Compritol(®), tripalmitin, tristearin and triolein) and soya phosphatidylcholine in different amounts and ratios were used for emulsomal preparation. Particles were modulated to generate nanocarriers with suitable size, charge, encapsulation efficiency and prolonged release. Cytotoxicity and pharmacokinetic studies were also implemented. Nano-spherical OX-emulsomes with maximal encapsulation of 96.75% were generated. Stability studies showed changes within 30.6% and 11.2% in the size and EE% after 3 months. MTT assay proved a decrease in drug toxicity by its encapsulation in emulsomes. Incorporation of OX into emulsomes resulted in stable nanoformulations. Tailoring emulsomes properties by modulating the surface charge and particle size produced a stable system for the lipophilic drug with a prolonged release profile and mean residence time and proved direct nose-to-brain transport in rats. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Identifying competitive strategies to improve the performance of hospitals in a competitive environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Chuan-Hui; Chiao, Yu-Ching; Tsai, Yafang

    2017-11-21

    This study is based on competitive dynamics theory, and discusses competitive actions (including their implementation requirements, strategic orientation, and action complexity) that influence hospitals' performance, while also meeting the requirements of Taiwan's "global budget" insurance payment policy. In order to investigate the possible actions of hospitals, the study was conducted in two stages. The first stage investigated the actions of hospitals from March 1 to May 31, 2009. Semi-structured questionnaires were used, which included in-depth interviews with senior supervisors of 10 medium- and large-scale hospitals in central Taiwan. This stage collected data related to the types of actions adopted by the hospitals in previous years. The second stage was based on the data collected from the first stage and on developed questionnaires, which were distributed from June 29 to November 1, 2009. The questionnaires were given to 20 superintendents, deputy superintendents, and supervisors responsible for the management of a hospital, and focused on medical centers and regional hospitals in central Taiwan in order to determine the types and number of competitive actions. First, the strategic orientation of an action has a significantly positive influence on subjective performance. Second, action complexity has a significantly positive influence on the subjective and the objective performance of a hospital. Third, the implementation requirements of actions do not have a significantly positive impact on the subjective or the objective performance of a hospital. Managers facing a competitive healthcare environment should adopt competitive strategies to improve the performance of the hospital.

  18. Improving accuracy for identifying related PubMed queries by an integrated approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Zhiyong; Wilbur, W John

    2009-10-01

    PubMed is the most widely used tool for searching biomedical literature online. As with many other online search tools, a user often types a series of multiple related queries before retrieving satisfactory results to fulfill a single information need. Meanwhile, it is also a common phenomenon to see a user type queries on unrelated topics in a single session. In order to study PubMed users' search strategies, it is necessary to be able to automatically separate unrelated queries and group together related queries. Here, we report a novel approach combining both lexical and contextual analyses for segmenting PubMed query sessions and identifying related queries and compare its performance with the previous approach based solely on concept mapping. We experimented with our integrated approach on sample data consisting of 1539 pairs of consecutive user queries in 351 user sessions. The prediction results of 1396 pairs agreed with the gold-standard annotations, achieving an overall accuracy of 90.7%. This demonstrates that our approach is significantly better than the previously published method. By applying this approach to a one day query log of PubMed, we found that a significant proportion of information needs involved more than one PubMed query, and that most of the consecutive queries for the same information need are lexically related. Finally, the proposed PubMed distance is shown to be an accurate and meaningful measure for determining the contextual similarity between biological terms. The integrated approach can play a critical role in handling real-world PubMed query log data as is demonstrated in our experiments.

  19. The role of the PIRT process in identifying code improvements and executing code development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilson, G.E.; Boyack, B.E.

    1997-01-01

    In September 1988, the USNRC issued a revised ECCS rule for light water reactors that allows, as an option, the use of best estimate (BE) plus uncertainty methods in safety analysis. The key feature of this licensing option relates to quantification of the uncertainty in the determination that an NPP has a low probability of violating the safety criteria specified in 10 CFR 50. To support the 1988 licensing revision, the USNRC and its contractors developed the CSAU evaluation methodology to demonstrate the feasibility of the BE plus uncertainty approach. The PIRT process, Step 3 in the CSAU methodology, was originally formulated to support the BE plus uncertainty licensing option as executed in the CSAU approach to safety analysis. Subsequent work has shown the PIRT process to be a much more powerful tool than conceived in its original form. Through further development and application, the PIRT process has shown itself to be a robust means to establish safety analysis computer code phenomenological requirements in their order of importance to such analyses. Used early in research directed toward these objectives, PIRT results also provide the technical basis and cost effective organization for new experimental programs needed to improve the safety analysis codes for new applications. The primary purpose of this paper is to describe the generic PIRT process, including typical and common illustrations from prior applications. The secondary objective is to provide guidance to future applications of the process to help them focus, in a graded approach, on systems, components, processes and phenomena that have been common in several prior applications

  20. The role of the PIRT process in identifying code improvements and executing code development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wilson, G.E. [Idaho National Engineering Lab., Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Boyack, B.E. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)

    1997-07-01

    In September 1988, the USNRC issued a revised ECCS rule for light water reactors that allows, as an option, the use of best estimate (BE) plus uncertainty methods in safety analysis. The key feature of this licensing option relates to quantification of the uncertainty in the determination that an NPP has a {open_quotes}low{close_quotes} probability of violating the safety criteria specified in 10 CFR 50. To support the 1988 licensing revision, the USNRC and its contractors developed the CSAU evaluation methodology to demonstrate the feasibility of the BE plus uncertainty approach. The PIRT process, Step 3 in the CSAU methodology, was originally formulated to support the BE plus uncertainty licensing option as executed in the CSAU approach to safety analysis. Subsequent work has shown the PIRT process to be a much more powerful tool than conceived in its original form. Through further development and application, the PIRT process has shown itself to be a robust means to establish safety analysis computer code phenomenological requirements in their order of importance to such analyses. Used early in research directed toward these objectives, PIRT results also provide the technical basis and cost effective organization for new experimental programs needed to improve the safety analysis codes for new applications. The primary purpose of this paper is to describe the generic PIRT process, including typical and common illustrations from prior applications. The secondary objective is to provide guidance to future applications of the process to help them focus, in a graded approach, on systems, components, processes and phenomena that have been common in several prior applications.

  1. Transcriptome analysis of the Cryptocaryon irritans tomont stage identifies potential genes for the detection and control of cryptocaryonosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan Kiew-Lian

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cryptocaryon irritans is a parasitic ciliate that causes cryptocaryonosis (white spot disease in marine fish. Diagnosis of cryptocaryonosis often depends on the appearance of white spots on the surface of the fish, which are usually visible only during later stages of the disease. Identifying suitable biomarkers of this parasite would aid the development of diagnostic tools and control strategies for C. irritans. The C. irritans genome is virtually unexplored; therefore, we generated and analyzed expressed sequence tags (ESTs of the parasite to identify genes that encode for surface proteins, excretory/secretory proteins and repeat-containing proteins. Results ESTs were generated from a cDNA library of C. irritans tomonts isolated from infected Asian sea bass, Lates calcarifer. Clustering of the 5356 ESTs produced 2659 unique transcripts (UTs containing 1989 singletons and 670 consensi. BLAST analysis showed that 74% of the UTs had significant similarity (E-value -5 to sequences that are currently available in the GenBank database, with more than 15% of the significant hits showing unknown function. Forty percent of the UTs had significant similarity to ciliates from the genera Tetrahymena and Paramecium. Comparative gene family analysis with related taxa showed that many protein families are conserved among the protozoans. Based on gene ontology annotation, functional groups were successfully assigned to 790 UTs. Genes encoding excretory/secretory proteins and membrane and membrane-associated proteins were identified because these proteins often function as antigens and are good antibody targets. A total of 481 UTs were classified as encoding membrane proteins, 54 were classified as encoding for membrane-bound proteins, and 155 were found to contain excretory/secretory protein-coding sequences. Amino acid repeat-containing proteins and GPI-anchored proteins were also identified as potential candidates for the development of

  2. Clinical proteomics identifies urinary CD14 as a potential biomarker for diagnosis of stable coronary artery disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min-Yi Lee

    Full Text Available Inflammation plays a key role in coronary artery disease (CAD and other manifestations of atherosclerosis. Recently, urinary proteins were found to be useful markers for reflecting inflammation status of different organs. To identify potential biomarker for diagnosis of CAD, we performed one-dimensional SDS-gel electrophoresis followed by liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS. Among the proteins differentially expressed in urine samples, monocyte antigen CD14 was found to be consistently expressed in higher amounts in the CAD patients as compared to normal controls. Using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays to analyze the concentrations of CD14 in urine and serum, we confirmed that urinary CD14 levels were significantly higher in patients (n = 73 with multi-vessel and single vessel CAD than in normal control (n = 35 (P < 0.001. Logistic regression analysis further showed that urinary CD14 concentration level is associated with severity or number of diseased vessels and SYNTAX score after adjustment for potential confounders. Concomitantly, the proportion of CD14+ monocytes was significantly increased in CAD patients (59.7 ± 3.6% as compared with healthy controls (14.9 ± 2.1% (P < 0.001, implicating that a high level of urinary CD14 may be potentially involved in mechanism(s leading to CAD pathogenesis. By performing shotgun proteomics, we further revealed that CD14-associated inflammatory response networks may play an essential role in CAD. In conclusion, the current study has demonstrated that release of CD14 in urine coupled with more CD14+ monocytes in CAD patients is significantly correlated with severity of CAD, pointing to the potential application of urinary CD14 as a novel noninvasive biomarker for large-scale diagnostic screening of susceptible CAD patients.

  3. The hierarchy-by-interval approach to identifying important models that need improvement in severe-accident simulation codes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heames, T.J.; Khatib-Rahbar, M.; Kelly, J.E.

    1995-01-01

    The hierarchy-by-interval (HBI) methodology was developed to determine an appropriate phenomena identification and ranking table for an independent peer review of severe-accident computer codes. The methodology is described, and the results of a specific code review are presented. Use of this systematic and structured approach ensures that important code models that need improvement are identified and prioritized, which allows code sponsors to more effectively direct limited resources in future code development. In addition, critical phenomenological areas that need more fundamental work, such as experimentation, are identified

  4. A GIS-based approach for identifying potential runoff harvesting sites in the Thukela River basin, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Winnaar, G.; Jewitt, G. P. W.; Horan, M.

    Water scarce countries such as South Africa are subject to various hydrological constraints which can often be attributed to poor rainfall partitioning, particularly within resource poor farming communities that are reliant on rainfed agriculture. Recent initiatives to address this have shifted focus to explore more efficient alternatives to water supply and the recognition of numerous opportunities to implement runoff harvesting as a means to supplement water availability. However, increasing the implementation of runoff harvesting, without encountering unintended impacts on downstream hydrological and ecological systems, requires better understanding of the hydrologic and environmental impacts at catchment scale. In this paper the representation of spatial variations in landscape characteristics such as soil, land use, rainfall and slope information is shown to be an important step in identifying potential runoff harvesting sites, after which modelling the hydrological response in catchments where extensive runoff harvesting is being considered can be performed and likely impacts assessed. Geographic information systems (GIS) was utilised as an integrating tool to store, analyse and manage spatial information and when linked to hydrological response models, provided a rational means to facilitate decision making by providing catchment level identification, planning and assessment of runoff harvesting sites as illustrated by a case study at the Potshini catchment, a small sub-catchment in the Thukela River basin, South Africa. Through the linked GIS, potential runoff harvesting sites are identified relative to areas that concentrate runoff and where the stored water will be appropriately distributed. Based on GIS analysis it was found that 17% percent of the Potshini catchment area has a high potential for generating surface runoff, whereas an analysis of all factors which influence the location of such systems, shows that 18% is highly suitable for runoff

  5. Energy Efficiency of Technological Equipment at the Economic Agent by Identifying the Points with Recoverable Heat Potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arina Negoiţescu

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available For an energy-efficient future, the EU needs to step up its efforts to maximize energy savings. In this context, the paper addresses the steps needed to establish energy efficiency measures and proposes effective measures to reduce consumption by recovering large amounts of energy lost to industrial consumers. The points with the highest recoverable energy potential have been identified and it is proposed to install the heat recovery systems on the flue gas exhaust circuits and polluted air from Industrial Technological Equipment (ITE such as dyeing/drying cabins (DDC. Therefore, whenever possible and as small as energy saving, energy recovery solutions at any level, but especially at local level, need to be applied. In conclusion, by concentrating all the energy-saving efforts that are still being wasted, Europe can contribute, by saving energy, to ensuring a sustainable energy future

  6. General Approach to Identifying Potential Targets for Cancer Imaging by Integrated Bioinformatics Analysis of Publicly Available Genomic Profiles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yongliang Yang

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Molecular imaging has moved to the forefront of drug development and biomedical research. The identification of appropriate imaging targets has become the touchstone for the accurate diagnosis and prognosis of human cancer. Particularly, cell surface- or membrane-bound proteins are attractive imaging targets for their aberrant expression, easily accessible location, and unique biochemical functions in tumor cells. Previously, we published a literature mining of potential targets for our in-house enzyme-mediated cancer imaging and therapy technology. Here we present a simple and integrated bioinformatics analysis approach that assembles a public cancer microarray database with a pathway knowledge base for ascertaining and prioritizing upregulated genes encoding cell surface- or membrane-bound proteins, which could serve imaging targets. As examples, we obtained lists of potential hits for six common and lethal human tumors in the prostate, breast, lung, colon, ovary, and pancreas. As control tests, a number of well-known cancer imaging targets were detected and confirmed by our study. Further, by consulting gene-disease and protein-disease databases, we suggest a number of significantly upregulated genes as promising imaging targets, including cell surface-associated mucin-1, prostate-specific membrane antigen, hepsin, urokinase plasminogen activator receptor, and folate receptors. By integrating pathway analysis, we are able to organize and map “focused” interaction networks derived from significantly dysregulated entity pairs to reflect important cellular functions in disease processes. We provide herein an example of identifying a tumor cell growth and proliferation subnetwork for prostate cancer. This systematic mining approach can be broadly applied to identify imaging or therapeutic targets for other human diseases.

  7. Monitoring biocalcification potential of Lysinibacillus sp. isolated from alluvial soils for improved compressive strength of concrete.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vashisht, Rajneesh; Attri, Sampan; Sharma, Deepak; Shukla, Abhilash; Goel, Gunjan

    2018-03-01

    The present study reports the potential of newly isolated calcite precipitating bacteria isolated from alluvial soil to improve the strength and durability of concrete. A total of sixteen samples of alluvial soil and sewage were collected from the different locations of province Solan (India). For isolation, enrichment culture technique was used to enrich calcite precipitating strains in Urea broth. After enrichment, fourteen distinct bacterial strains were obtained on Urea agar. Based on qualitative and quantitative screening for urease activity, five isolates were obtained possessing higher calcite formation and urease activities (38-77 μmhos/cm) as compared with standard strain of Bacillus megaterium MTCC 1684 (77 μmhos/cm). An isolate I13 identified as Lysinibacillus sp. was selected for self healing property in the concrete mix of M20. An improved compressive strength of 1.5 fold was observed in concrete samples amended with Lysinibacillus sp. over the concrete amended with B. megaterium MTCC 1684 after 28 days of curing. The higher calcite precipitation activity was indicated in Lysinibacillus sp. by FE-SEM micrographs and EDX analysis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  8. PAU-SA: A Synthetic Aperture Interferometric Radiometer Test Bed for Potential Improvements in Future Missions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Merce Vall-llosera

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS mission is an Earth Explorer Opportunity mission from the European Space Agency (ESA. Its goal is to produce global maps of soil moisture and ocean salinity using the Microwave Imaging Radiometer by Aperture Synthesis (MIRAS. The purpose of the Passive Advanced Unit Synthetic Aperture (PAU-SA instrument is to study and test some potential improvements that could eventually be implemented in future missions using interferometric radiometers such as the Geoestacionary Atmosferic Sounder (GAS, the Precipitation and All-weather Temperature and Humidity (PATH and the Geostationary Interferometric Microwave Sounder (GIMS. Both MIRAS and PAU-SA are Y-shaped arrays with uniformly distributed antennas, but the receiver topology and the processing unit are quite different. The purpose of this work is to identify the elements in the MIRAS’s design susceptible of improvement and apply them in the PAU-SA instrument demonstrator, to test them in view of these future interferometric radiometer missions.

  9. Direct and Pollinator-Mediated Effects of Herbivory on Strawberry and the Potential for Improved Resistance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Muola

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The global decline in pollinators has partly been blamed on pesticides, leading some to propose pesticide-free farming as an option to improve pollination. However, herbivores are likely to be more prevalent in pesticide-free environments, requiring knowledge of their effects on pollinators, and alternative crop protection strategies to mitigate any potential pollination reduction. Strawberry leaf beetles (SLB Galerucella spp. are important strawberry pests in Northern Europe and Russia. Given that SLB attack both leaf and flower tissue, we hypothesized pollinators would discriminate against SLB-damaged strawberry plants (Fragaria vesca, cultivar ‘Rügen’, leading to lower pollination success and yield. In addition we screened the most common commercial cultivar ‘Rügen’ and wild Swedish F. vesca genotypes for SLB resistance to assess the potential for inverse breeding to restore high SLB resistance in cultivated strawberry. Behavioral observations in a controlled experiment revealed that the local pollinator fauna avoided strawberry flowers with SLB-damaged petals. Low pollination, in turn, resulted in smaller more deformed fruits. Furthermore, SLB-damaged flowers produced smaller fruits even when they were hand pollinated, showing herbivore damage also had direct effects on yield, independent of indirect effects on pollination. We found variable resistance in wild woodland strawberry to SLB and more resistant plant genotypes than the cultivar ‘Rügen’ were identified. Efficient integrated pest management strategies should be employed to mitigate both direct and indirect effects of herbivory for cultivated strawberry, including high intrinsic plant resistance.

  10. Measurement of compartment elasticity using pressure related ultrasound: a method to identify patients with potential compartment syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellei, R M; Hingmann, S J; Kobbe, P; Weber, C; Grice, J E; Zimmerman, F; Jeromin, S; Gansslen, A; Hildebrand, F; Pape, H C

    2015-01-01

    PURPOSE OF THE STUDY Decision-making in treatment of an acute compartment syndrome is based on clinical assessment, supported by invasive monitoring. Thus, evolving compartment syndrome may require repeated pressure measurements. In suspected cases of potential compartment syndromes clinical assessment alone seems to be unreliable. The objective of this study was to investigate the feasibility of a non-invasive application estimating whole compartmental elasticity by ultrasound, which may improve accuracy of diagnostics. MATERIAL AND METHODS In an in-vitro model, using an artificial container simulating dimensions of the human anterior tibial compartment, intracompartmental pressures (p) were raised subsequently up to 80 mm Hg by infusion of saline solution. The compartmental depth (mm) in the cross-section view was measured before and after manual probe compression (100 mm Hg) upon the surface resulting in a linear compartmental displacement (Δd). This was repeated at rising compartmental pressures. The resulting displacements were related to the corresponding intra-compartmental pressures simulated in our model. A hypothesized relationship between pressures related compartmental displacement and the elasticity at elevated compartment pressures was investigated. RESULTS With rising compartmental pressures, a non-linear, reciprocal proportional relation between the displacement (mm) and the intra-compartmental pressure (mm Hg) occurred. The Pearson's coefficient showed a high correlation (r2 = -0.960). The intraobserver reliability value kappa resulted in a statistically high reliability (κ = 0.840). The inter-observer value indicated a fair reliability (κ = 0.640). CONCLUSIONS Our model reveals that a strong correlation between compartmental strain displacements assessed by ultrasound and the intra-compartmental pressure changes occurs. Further studies are required to prove whether this assessment is transferable to human muscle tissue. Determining the complete

  11. Identifying cognitive preferences for attractive female faces: an event-related potential experiment using a study-test paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yan; Kong, Fanchang; Chen, Hong; Jackson, Todd; Han, Li; Meng, Jing; Yang, Zhou; Gao, Jianguo; Najam ul Hasan, Abbasi

    2011-11-01

    In this experiment, sensitivity to female facial attractiveness was examined by comparing event-related potentials (ERPs) in response to attractive and unattractive female faces within a study-test paradigm. Fourteen heterosexual participants (age range 18-24 years, mean age 21.67 years) were required to judge 84 attractive and 84 unattractive face images as either "attractive" or "unattractive." They were then asked whether they had previously viewed each face in a recognition task in which 50% of the images were novel. Analyses indicated that attractive faces elicited more enhanced ERP amplitudes than did unattractive faces in judgment (N300 and P350-550 msec) and recognition (P160 and N250-400 msec and P400-700 msec) tasks on anterior locations. Moreover, longer reaction times and higher accuracy rate were observed in identifying attractive faces than unattractive faces. In sum, this research identified neural and behavioral bases related to cognitive preferences for judging and recognizing attractive female faces. Explanations for the results are that attractive female faces arouse more intense positive emotions in participants than do unattractive faces, and they also represent reproductive fitness and mating value from the evolutionary perspective. Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  12. Cross-comparison of the genome sequences from human, chimpanzee, Neanderthal and a Denisovan hominin identifies novel potentially compensated mutations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhang Guojie

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The recent publication of the draft genome sequences of the Neanderthal and a ~50,000-year-old archaic hominin from Denisova Cave in southern Siberia has ushered in a new age in molecular archaeology. We previously cross-compared the human, chimpanzee and Neanderthal genome sequences with respect to a set of disease-causing/disease-associated missense and regulatory mutations (Human Gene Mutation Database and succeeded in identifying genetic variants which, although apparently pathogenic in humans, may represent a 'compensated' wild-type state in at least one of the other two species. Here, in an attempt to identify further 'potentially compensated mutations' (PCMs of interest, we have compared our dataset of disease-causing/disease-associated mutations with their corresponding nucleotide positions in the Denisovan hominin, Neanderthal and chimpanzee genomes. Of the 15 human putatively disease-causing mutations that were found to be compensated in chimpanzee, Denisovan or Neanderthal, only a solitary F5 variant (Val1736Met was specific to the Denisovan. In humans, this missense mutation is associated with activated protein C resistance and an increased risk of thromboembolism and recurrent miscarriage. It is unclear at this juncture whether this variant was indeed a PCM in the Denisovan or whether it could instead have been associated with disease in this ancient hominin.

  13. In silico repositioning-chemogenomics strategy identifies new drugs with potential activity against multiple life stages of Schistosoma mansoni.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno J Neves

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Morbidity and mortality caused by schistosomiasis are serious public health problems in developing countries. Because praziquantel is the only drug in therapeutic use, the risk of drug resistance is a concern. In the search for new schistosomicidal drugs, we performed a target-based chemogenomics screen of a dataset of 2,114 proteins to identify drugs that are approved for clinical use in humans that may be active against multiple life stages of Schistosoma mansoni. Each of these proteins was treated as a potential drug target, and its amino acid sequence was used to interrogate three databases: Therapeutic Target Database (TTD, DrugBank and STITCH. Predicted drug-target interactions were refined using a combination of approaches, including pairwise alignment, conservation state of functional regions and chemical space analysis. To validate our strategy, several drugs previously shown to be active against Schistosoma species were correctly predicted, such as clonazepam, auranofin, nifedipine, and artesunate. We were also able to identify 115 drugs that have not yet been experimentally tested against schistosomes and that require further assessment. Some examples are aprindine, gentamicin, clotrimazole, tetrabenazine, griseofulvin, and cinnarizine. In conclusion, we have developed a systematic and focused computer-aided approach to propose approved drugs that may warrant testing and/or serve as lead compounds for the design of new drugs against schistosomes.

  14. Can empathy, other personality attributes, and level of positive social influence in medical school identify potential leaders in medicine?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hojat, Mohammadreza; Michalec, Barret; Veloski, J Jon; Tykocinski, Mark L

    2015-04-01

    To test the hypotheses that medical students recognized by peers as the most positive social influencers would score (1) high on measures of engaging personality attributes that are conducive to relationship building (empathy, sociability, activity, self-esteem), and (2) low on disengaging personality attributes that are detrimental to interpersonal relationships (loneliness, neuroticism, aggression-hostility, impulsive sensation seeking). The study included 666 Jefferson Medical College students who graduated in 2011-2013. Students used a peer nomination instrument to identify classmates who had a positive influence on their professional and personal development. At matriculation, these students had completed a survey that included the Jefferson Scale of Empathy and Zuckerman-Kuhlman Personality Questionnaire short form and abridged versions of the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale and UCLA Loneliness Scale. In multivariate analyses of variance, the method of contrasted groups was used to compare the personality attributes of students nominated most frequently by their peers as positive influencers (top influencers [top 25% in their class distribution], n = 176) with those of students nominated least frequently (bottom influencers [bottom 25%], n = 171). The top influencers scored significantly higher on empathy, sociability, and activity and significantly lower on loneliness compared with the bottom influencers. However, the effect size estimates of the differences were moderate at best. The research hypotheses were partially confirmed. Positive social influencers appear to possess personality attributes conducive to relationship building, which is an important feature of effective leadership. The findings have implications for identifying and training potential leaders in medicine.

  15. Identifying potential effects of climate change on the development of water resources in Pinios River Basin, Central Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arampatzis, G.; Panagopoulos, A.; Pisinaras, V.; Tziritis, E.; Wendland, F.

    2018-05-01

    The aim of the present study is to assess the future spatial and temporal distribution of precipitation and temperature, and relate the corresponding change to water resources' quantitative status in Pinios River Basin (PRB), Thessaly, Greece. For this purpose, data from four Regional Climate Models (RCMs) for the periods 2021-2100 driven by several General Circulation Models (GCMs) were collected and bias-correction was performed based on linear scaling method. The bias-correction was made based on monthly precipitation and temperature data collected for the period 1981-2000 from 57 meteorological stations in total. The results indicate a general trend according to which precipitation is decreasing whilst temperature is increasing to an extent that varies depending on each particular RCM-GCM output. On the average, annual precipitation change for the period 2021-2100 was about - 80 mm, ranging between - 149 and + 35 mm, while the corresponding change for temperature was 2.81 °C, ranging between 1.48 and 3.72 °C. The investigation of potential impacts to the water resources demonstrates that water availability is expected to be significantly decreased in the already water-stressed PRB. The water stresses identified are related to the potential decreasing trend in groundwater recharge and the increasing trend in irrigation demand, which constitutes the major water consumer in PRB.

  16. Crowd-sourced Ontology for Photoleukocoria: Identifying Common Internet Search Terms for a Potentially Important Pediatric Ophthalmic Sign.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staffieri, Sandra E; Kearns, Lisa S; Sanfilippo, Paul G; Craig, Jamie E; Mackey, David A; Hewitt, Alex W

    2018-02-01

    Leukocoria is the most common presenting sign for pediatric eye disease including retinoblastoma and cataract, with worse outcomes if diagnosis is delayed. We investigated whether individuals could identify leukocoria in photographs (photoleukocoria) and examined their subsequent Internet search behavior. Using a web-based questionnaire, in this cross-sectional study we invited adults aged over 18 years to view two photographs of a child with photoleukocoria, and then search the Internet to determine a possible diagnosis and action plan. The most commonly used search terms and websites accessed were recorded. The questionnaire was completed by 1639 individuals. Facebook advertisement was the most effective recruitment strategy. The mean age of all respondents was 38.95 ± 14.59 years (range, 18-83), 94% were female, and 59.3% had children. An abnormality in the images presented was identified by 1613 (98.4%) participants. The most commonly used search terms were: "white," "pupil," "photo," and "eye" reaching a variety of appropriate websites or links to print or social media articles. Different words or phrases were used to describe the same observation of photoleukocoria leading to a range of websites. Variations in the description of observed signs and search words influenced the sites reached, information obtained, and subsequent help-seeking intentions. Identifying the most commonly used search terms for photoleukocoria is an important step for search engine optimization. Being directed to the most appropriate websites informing of the significance of photoleukocoria and the appropriate actions to take could improve delays in diagnosis of important pediatric eye disease such as retinoblastoma or cataract.

  17. Experimental antibiotic treatment identifies potential pathogens of white band disease in the endangered Caribbean coral Acropora cervicornis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweet, M J; Croquer, A; Bythell, J C

    2014-08-07

    of the other potential pathogens identified in this study.

  18. Applying the trigger review method after a brief educational intervention: potential for teaching and improving safety in GP specialty training?

    OpenAIRE

    McKay, John; de Wet, Carl; Kelly, Moya; Bowie, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Background:\\ud The Trigger Review Method (TRM) is a structured approach to screening clinical records for undetected patient safety incidents (PSIs) and identifying learning and improvement opportunities. In Scotland, TRM participation can inform GP appraisal and has been included as a core component of the national primary care patient safety programme that was launched in March 2013. However, the clinical workforce needs up-skilled and the potential of TRM in GP training has yet to be teste...

  19. Using Workflow Modeling to Identify Areas to Improve Genetic Test Processes in the University of Maryland Translational Pharmacogenomics Project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutting, Elizabeth M; Overby, Casey L; Banchero, Meghan; Pollin, Toni; Kelemen, Mark; Shuldiner, Alan R; Beitelshees, Amber L

    Delivering genetic test results to clinicians is a complex process. It involves many actors and multiple steps, requiring all of these to work together in order to create an optimal course of treatment for the patient. We used information gained from focus groups in order to illustrate the current process of delivering genetic test results to clinicians. We propose a business process model and notation (BPMN) representation of this process for a Translational Pharmacogenomics Project being implemented at the University of Maryland Medical Center, so that personalized medicine program implementers can identify areas to improve genetic testing processes. We found that the current process could be improved to reduce input errors, better inform and notify clinicians about the implications of certain genetic tests, and make results more easily understood. We demonstrate our use of BPMN to improve this important clinical process for CYP2C19 genetic testing in patients undergoing invasive treatment of coronary heart disease.

  20. Formosa Plastics Corporation: Plant-Wide Assessment of Texas Plant Identifies Opportunities for Improving Process Efficiency and Reducing Energy Costs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    2005-01-01

    At Formosa Plastics Corporation's plant in Point Comfort, Texas, a plant-wide assessment team analyzed process energy requirements, reviewed new technologies for applicability, and found ways to improve the plant's energy efficiency. The assessment team identified the energy requirements of each process and compared actual energy consumption with theoretical process requirements. The team estimated that total annual energy savings would be about 115,000 MBtu for natural gas and nearly 14 million kWh for electricity if the plant makes several improvements, which include upgrading the gas compressor impeller, improving the vent blower system, and recovering steam condensate for reuse. Total annual cost savings could be $1.5 million. The U.S. Department of Energy's Industrial Technologies Program cosponsored this assessment.

  1. Predicted channel types - Potential for Habitat Improvement in the Columbia River Basin

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Basin-wide analysis of potential to improve tributary habitats in the Columbia River basin through restoration of habitat-forming processes. Identification of...

  2. Predicted riparian vegetation - Potential for Habitat Improvement in the Columbia River Basin

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Basin-wide analysis of potential to improve tributary habitats in the Columbia River basin through restoration of habitat-forming processes. Identification of...

  3. Genomic locus modulating corneal thickness in the mouse identifies POU6F2 as a potential risk of developing glaucoma.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca King

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Central corneal thickness (CCT is one of the most heritable ocular traits and it is also a phenotypic risk factor for primary open angle glaucoma (POAG. The present study uses the BXD Recombinant Inbred (RI strains to identify novel quantitative trait loci (QTLs modulating CCT in the mouse with the potential of identifying a molecular link between CCT and risk of developing POAG. The BXD RI strain set was used to define mammalian genomic loci modulating CCT, with a total of 818 corneas measured from 61 BXD RI strains (between 60-100 days of age. The mice were anesthetized and the eyes were positioned in front of the lens of the Phoenix Micron IV Image-Guided OCT system or the Bioptigen OCT system. CCT data for each strain was averaged and used to QTLs modulating this phenotype using the bioinformatics tools on GeneNetwork (www.genenetwork.org. The candidate genes and genomic loci identified in the mouse were then directly compared with the summary data from a human POAG genome wide association study (NEIGHBORHOOD to determine if any genomic elements modulating mouse CCT are also risk factors for POAG.This analysis revealed one significant QTL on Chr 13 and a suggestive QTL on Chr 7. The significant locus on Chr 13 (13 to 19 Mb was examined further to define candidate genes modulating this eye phenotype. For the Chr 13 QTL in the mouse, only one gene in the region (Pou6f2 contained nonsynonymous SNPs. Of these five nonsynonymous SNPs in Pou6f2, two resulted in changes in the amino acid proline which could result in altered secondary structure affecting protein function. The 7 Mb region under the mouse Chr 13 peak distributes over 2 chromosomes in the human: Chr 1 and Chr 7. These genomic loci were examined in the NEIGHBORHOOD database to determine if they are potential risk factors for human glaucoma identified using meta-data from human GWAS. The top 50 hits all resided within one gene (POU6F2, with the highest significance level of p = 10-6 for

  4. What's down below? Current and potential future applications of geophysical techniques to identify subsurface permafrost conditions (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, T. A.; Bjella, K.; Campbell, S. W.

    2013-12-01

    For infrastructure design, operations, and maintenance requirements in the North the ability to accurately and efficiently detect the presence (or absence) of ground ice in permafrost terrains is a serious challenge. Ground ice features including ice wedges, thermokarst cave-ice, and segregation ice are present in a variety of spatial scales and patterns. Currently, most engineering applications use borehole logging and sampling to extrapolate conditions at the point scale. However, there is high risk of over or under estimating the presence of frozen or unfrozen features when relying on borehole information alone. In addition, boreholes are costly, especially for planning linear structures like roads or runways. Predicted climate warming will provide further challenges for infrastructure development and transportation operations where permafrost degradation occurs. Accurately identifying the subsurface character in permafrost terrains will allow engineers and planners to cost effectively create novel infrastructure designs to withstand the changing environment. There is thus a great need for a low cost rapidly deployable, spatially extensive means of 'measuring' subsurface conditions. Geophysical measurements, both terrestrial and airborne, have strong potential to revolutionize our way of mapping subsurface conditions. Many studies in continuous and discontinuous permafrost have used geophysical measurements to identify discrete features and repeatable patterns in the subsurface. The most common measurements include galvanic and capacitive coupled resistivity, ground penetrating radar, and multi frequency electromagnetic induction techniques. Each of these measurements has strengths, weaknesses, and limitations. By combining horizontal geophysical measurements, downhole geophysics, multispectral remote sensing images, LiDAR measurements, and soil and vegetation mapping we can start to assemble a holistic view of how surface conditions and standoff measurements

  5. Using Multicore Programming on the GPU to Improve Creation of Potential Fields

    OpenAIRE

    Elmir, Hassan

    2013-01-01

    In the last decade video games have made great improvements in terms of arti cial intelligence and visuals. Researchers have also made advancements in the arti cial intelligence eld and some of the latest research papers have been exploring potential elds. This report will cover the background of potential eld and examine some improvements that can be made to increase the performance of the algorithm. The basic idea is to increase performance by making a GPGPU(General purpose graphic processi...

  6. Nasal screening for Staphylococcus aureus--daily routine with improvement potentials.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philipp Warnke

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Staphylococcus aureus causes purulent bacterial infections with a considerable number of life-threatening complications and thus, is a serious cost factor in public health. Up to 50% of a given population could asymptomatically carry Staphylococcus aureus in their nares, thereby serving as a source for contact transmissions and endogenous infections. Nasal swab-based screening techniques are widely used to identify suchcarriers. This study investigated the skill of medical professionals in taking nasal swabs and the effect of teaching on improving bacterial recovery rates. METHODS: 364 persons with different medical educational background participated in this study. A novel anatomically correct artificial nose model was implemented and inoculated with a numerically defined mixture of Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis bacteria. Utilizing regular clinical swabs, participants performed screening of the inoculated nose models before and after standardized theoretical, visual, and practical teaching. Recovery of bacteria was measured by standard viable count techniques. Data were analyzed statistically by nonparametric tests. RESULTS: It could be demonstrated that combined theoretical and practical teaching improved bacterial recovery rates. Even experienced medical professionals increased their detection levels after training. Recovery rates of bacteria varied significantly between trained (158.1 CFU and untrained (47.5 CFU participants (Wilcoxon test, p<0.001; Kolmogorov-Smirnov test, p<0.001. CONCLUSIONS: Swabs are commonly used to detect nasal carriage of Staphylococcus aureus in patients. The present teaching algorithm combined with the novel nose model offers an excellent precondition to improve knowledge and performance of this technique. Increased detection rates may prevent from contact transmission due to suboptimum hygienic patient handling. Consecutively, this effect could reduce costs for patient care. This

  7. Failure mode effects and criticality analysis: innovative risk assessment to identify critical areas for improvement in emergency department sepsis resuscitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powell, Emilie S; O'Connor, Lanty M; Nannicelli, Anna P; Barker, Lisa T; Khare, Rahul K; Seivert, Nicholas P; Holl, Jane L; Vozenilek, John A

    2014-06-01

    Sepsis is an increasing problem in the practice of emergency medicine as the prevalence is increasing and optimal care to reduce mortality requires significant resources and time. Evidence-based septic shock resuscitation strategies exist, and rely on appropriate recognition and diagnosis, but variation in adherence to the recommendations and therefore outcomes remains. Our objective was to perform a multi-institutional prospective risk-assessment, using failure mode effects and criticality analysis (FMECA), to identify high-risk failures in ED sepsis resuscitation. We conducted a FMECA, which prospectively identifies critical areas for improvement in systems and processes of care, across three diverse hospitals. A multidisciplinary group of participants described the process of emergency department (ED) sepsis resuscitation to then create a comprehensive map and table listing all process steps and identified process failures. High-risk failures in sepsis resuscitation from each of the institutions were compiled to identify common high-risk failures. Common high-risk failures included limited availability of equipment to place the central venous catheter and conduct invasive monitoring, and cognitive overload leading to errors in decision-making. Additionally, we identified great variability in care processes across institutions. Several common high-risk failures in sepsis care exist: a disparity in resources available across hospitals, a lack of adherence to the invasive components of care, and cognitive barriers that affect expert clinicians' decision-making capabilities. Future work may concentrate on dissemination of non-invasive alternatives and overcoming cognitive barriers in diagnosis and knowledge translation.

  8. Identifying conservation priorities and management strategies based on ecosystem services to improve urban sustainability in Harbin, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qu, Yi; Lu, Ming

    2018-01-01

    Rapid urbanization and agricultural development has resulted in the degradation of ecosystems, while also negatively impacting ecosystem services (ES) and urban sustainability. Identifying conservation priorities for ES and applying reasonable management strategies have been found to be effective methods for mitigating this phenomenon. The purpose of this study is to propose a comprehensive framework for identifying ES conservation priorities and associated management strategies for these planning areas. First, we incorporated 10 ES indicators within a systematic conservation planning (SCP) methodology in order to identify ES conservation priorities with high irreplaceability values based on conservation target goals associated with the potential distribution of ES indicators. Next, we assessed the efficiency of the ES conservation priorities for meeting the designated conservation target goals. Finally, ES conservation priorities were clustered into groups using a K-means clustering analysis in an effort to identify the dominant ES per location before formulating management strategies. We effectively identified 12 ES priorities to best represent conservation target goals for the ES indicators. These 12 priorities had a total areal coverage of 13,364 km 2 representing 25.16% of the study area. The 12 priorities were further clustered into five significantly different groups ( p -values between groups urban and agricultural areas, thereby preventing urban and agriculture sprawl and guiding sustainable urban development.

  9. SU-E-T-452: Identifying Inefficiencies in Radiation Oncology Workflow and Prioritizing Solutions for Process Improvement and Patient Safety

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bennion, N; Driewer, J; Denniston, K; Zhen, W; Enke, C [University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE (United States); Jacobs, K; Poole, M; McMahon, R; Wilson, K; Yager, A [Nebraska Medicine, Omaha, NE (United States)

    2015-06-15

    Purpose: Successful radiation therapy requires multi-step processes susceptible to unnecessary delays that can negatively impact clinic workflow, patient satisfaction, and safety. This project applied process improvement tools to assess workflow bottlenecks and identify solutions to barriers for effective implementation. Methods: We utilized the DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, control) methodology, limiting our scope to the treatment planning process. From May through December of 2014, times and dates of each step from simulation to treatment were recorded for 507 cases. A value-stream map created from this dataset directed our selection of outcome measures (Y metrics). Critical goals (X metrics) that would accomplish the Y metrics were identified. Barriers to actions were binned into control-impact matrices, in order to stratify them into four groups: in/out of control and high/low impact. Solutions to each barrier were then categorized into benefit-effort matries to identify those of high benefit and low effort. Results: For 507 cases, the mean time from simulation to treatment was 235 total hours. The mean process and wait time were 60 and 132 hours, respectively. The Y metric was to increase the ratio of all non-emergent plans completed the business day prior to treatment from 47% to 75%. Project X metrics included increasing the number of IMRT QAs completed at least 24 hours prior to treatment from 19% to 80% and the number of non-IMRT plans approved at least 24 hours prior to treatment from 33% to 80%. Intervals from simulation to target contour and from initial plan completion to plan approval were identified as periods that could benefit from intervention. Barriers to actions were binned into control-impact matrices and solutions by benefit-effort matrices. Conclusion: The DMAIC method can be successfully applied in radiation therapy clinics to identify inefficiencies and prioritize solutions for the highest impact.

  10. Innovating for quality and value: Utilizing national quality improvement programs to identify opportunities for responsible surgical innovation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woo, Russell K; Skarsgard, Erik D

    2015-06-01

    Innovation in surgical techniques, technology, and care processes are essential for improving the care and outcomes of surgical patients, including children. The time and cost associated with surgical innovation can be significant, and unless it leads to improvements in outcome at equivalent or lower costs, it adds little or no value from the perspective of the patients, and decreases the overall resources available to our already financially constrained healthcare system. The emergence of a safety and quality mandate in surgery, and the development of the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) allow needs-based surgical care innovation which leads to value-based improvement in care. In addition to general and procedure-specific clinical outcomes, surgeons should consider the measurement of quality from the patients' perspective. To this end, the integration of validated Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) into actionable, benchmarked institutional outcomes reporting has the potential to facilitate quality improvement in process, treatment and technology that optimizes value for our patients and health system. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Using satellite data to identify the causes of and potential solutions for yield gaps in India’s Wheat Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, M.; Singh, Balwinder; Srivastava, A. A. K.; Malik, R. K.; McDonald, A. J.; Lobell, D. B.

    2017-09-01

    Food security will be increasingly challenged by climate change, natural resource degradation, and population growth. Wheat yields, in particular, have already stagnated in many regions and will be further affected by warming temperatures. Despite these challenges, wheat yields can be increased by improving management practices in regions with existing yield gaps. To identify the magnitude and causes of current yield gaps in India, one of the largest wheat producers globally, we produced 30 meter resolution yield maps from 2001 to 2015 across the Indo-Gangetic Plains (IGP), the nation’s main wheat belt. Yield maps were derived using a new method that translates satellite vegetation indices to yield estimates using crop model simulations, bypassing the need for ground calibration data. This is one of the first attempts to apply this method to a smallholder agriculture system, where ground calibration data are rarely available. We find that yields can be increased by 11% on average and up to 32% in the eastern IGP by improving management to current best practices within a given district. Additionally, if current best practices from the highest-yielding state of Punjab are implemented in the eastern IGP, yields could increase by almost 110%. Considering the factors that most influence yields, later sow dates and warmer temperatures are most associated with low yields across the IGP. This suggests that strategies to reduce the negative effects of heat stress, like earlier sowing and planting heat-tolerant wheat varieties, are critical to increasing wheat yields in this globally-important agricultural region.

  12. Identifying Faults Associated with the 2001 Avoca Induced(?) Seismicity Sequence of Western New York State Using Potential Field Wavelets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horowitz, F. G.; Ebinger, C.; Jordan, T. E.

    2017-12-01

    Results from recent DOE and USGS sponsored projects in the (intraplate) northeastern portions of the US and southeastern portions of Canada have identified locations of steeply dipping structures - many previously unknown - from a Poisson wavelet multiscale edge ('worm') analysis of gravity and magnetic fields. The Avoca sequence of induced(?) seismicity in western New York state occurred during January and February of 2001. The Avoca earthquake sequence is associated with industrial hydraulic fracturing activity "related to a proposed natural gas storage facility near Avoca to be constructed by solution mining" (Kim, 2001). The main Avoca event was a felt Mb = 3.2 earthquake on Feb. 3, 2001 recorded by the Lamont Cooperative Seismic Network. Earlier, smaller events were located by the Canadian Geological Survey's seismic network north of the Canadian border - implying that the event locations might be biased because they occurred off the southern edge of the array. Some of these events were also felt locally, according to local newspaper reports. By plotting the location of the seismic events and that of the injection well - reported via it's API number - we find a strong correlation with structures detected via our potential field worms. The injection occurred near a NE-SW striking structure that was not activated. All but one of the earthquakes occurred about 5 km north of the injection well on or nearby to an E-W striking structure that appears to intersect the NE-SW structure. The final, small (MN=2.2) earthquake was located on a different complex structure about 10 km north of the other events. We suggest that potential field methods such as ours might be appropriate to locating structures of concern for induced seismic activity in association with industrial activity. Reference: Kim, W.-Y. (2001). The Lamont cooperative seismic network and the national seismic system: Earthquake hazard studies in the northeastern United States. Tech. Rep. 98-01, Lamont

  13. Improving the Clinical Pharmacologic Assessment of Abuse Potential: Part 2: Optimizing the Design of Human Abuse Potential Studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellers, Edward M

    2018-04-01

    This article discusses the conduct of a human abuse potential study as outlined in the Food and Drug Administration Final Guidance to Industry on Assessment of Abuse Potential. In addition, areas where alternative approaches should be considered are proposed. The design, end points, conduct, and interpretation of the human abuse potential study were reviewed, analyzed, and placed in the context of current scientific knowledge and best practices to mitigate regulatory risk and expedite drug development. The guidance is based on regulatory needs and current scientific practices. However, the reliability and utility of such studies can be improved with better subject selection, data collection, standardization of data collection and staff training, and a better understanding of the measurement properties of the dependent measures. The guidance provides a useful framework for conduct of human abuse potential studies. However, design assumptions, poor choice of end points, failure to consider alternate approaches, and limited experience with interpretation can result in an inadequate study or one that does not fairly represent the abuse potential of a new chemical entity. Methodologic development is needed to strengthen the regulatory framework. The Food and Drug Administration or the National Institutes on Drug Abuse could take a targeted initiative to encourage this work.

  14. Three newly identified galectin homologues from triangle sail mussel (Hyriopsis cumingii) function as potential pattern-recognition receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Ling-Ling; Hui, Kaimin; Wang, Yu-Qing; Wang, Yue; Ren, Qian; Li, Xin-Cang

    2018-05-01

    Galactoside-binding lectins, also known as galectins, play crucial roles in innate immune response in invertebrates. In this study, three cDNA sequences from Hyriopsis cumingii were identified and collectively called HcGalec genes. Each of the three deduced HcGalec proteins contained a galactose-binding lectin domain or a GLECT domain. All the three HcGalec genes are mainly present in the hepatopancreas and gills, and their expression is induced at 24 h after bacterial challenge. Three recombinant HcGalec proteins can bind and agglutinate (Ca 2+ -dependent) various microorganisms, including Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. These proteins can attach to mannan and peptidoglycan. Meanwhile, the expression of the three HcGalec genes in the gills were significantly down-regulated after dsRNA interference (HcGalec1-RNAi, HcGalec2-RNAi, and HcGalec3-RNAi) and Vibrio parahaemolyticus injection. The expression levels of some antimicrobial peptides, including lysozyme 1 and lysozyme 2, were also markedly decreased after dsRNA interference. Overall, these results suggested that these three HcGalec proteins may function as potential receptors participating in the innate immune responses of H. cumingii against bacterial infection. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Next Generation Sequencing Identifies Five Major Classes of Potentially Therapeutic Enzymes Secreted by Lucilia sericata Medical Maggots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franta, Zdeněk; Vogel, Heiko; Lehmann, Rüdiger; Rupp, Oliver; Goesmann, Alexander; Vilcinskas, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Lucilia sericata larvae are used as an alternative treatment for recalcitrant and chronic wounds. Their excretions/secretions contain molecules that facilitate tissue debridement, disinfect, or accelerate wound healing and have therefore been recognized as a potential source of novel therapeutic compounds. Among the substances present in excretions/secretions various peptidase activities promoting the wound healing processes have been detected but the peptidases responsible for these activities remain mostly unidentified. To explore these enzymes we applied next generation sequencing to analyze the transcriptomes of different maggot tissues (salivary glands, gut, and crop) associated with the production of excretions/secretions and/or with digestion as well as the rest of the larval body. As a result we obtained more than 123.8 million paired-end reads, which were assembled de novo using Trinity and Oases assemblers, yielding 41,421 contigs with an N50 contig length of 2.22 kb and a total length of 67.79 Mb. BLASTp analysis against the MEROPS database identified 1729 contigs in 577 clusters encoding five peptidase classes (serine, cysteine, aspartic, threonine, and metallopeptidases), which were assigned to 26 clans, 48 families, and 185 peptidase species. The individual enzymes were differentially expressed among maggot tissues and included peptidase activities related to the therapeutic effects of maggot excretions/secretions.

  16. Genome characterization of Turkey Rotavirus G strains from the United States identifies potential recombination events with human Rotavirus B strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Fangzhou; Knutson, Todd P; Porter, Robert E; Ciarlet, Max; Mor, Sunil Kumar; Marthaler, Douglas G

    2017-12-01

    Rotavirus G (RVG) strains have been detected in a variety of avian species, but RVG genomes have been published from only a single pigeon and two chicken strains. Two turkey RVG strains were identified and characterized, one in a hatchery with no reported health issues and the other in a hatchery with high embryo/poult mortality. The two turkey RVG strains shared only an 85.3 % nucleotide sequence identity in the VP7 gene while the other genes possessed high nucleotide identity among them (96.3-99.9 %). Low nucleotide percentage identities (31.6-87.3 %) occurred among the pigeon and chicken RVG strains. Interestingly, potential recombination events were detected between our RVG strains and a human RVB strain, in the VP6 and NSP3 segments. The epidemiology of RVG in avian flocks and the pathogenicity of the two different RVG strains should be further investigated to understand the ecology and impact of RVG in commercial poultry flocks.

  17. An Improved Zero Potential Circuit for Readout of a Two-Dimensional Resistive Sensor Array

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Feng Wu

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available With one operational amplifier (op-amp in negative feedback, the traditional zero potential circuit could access one element in the two-dimensional (2-D resistive sensor array with the shared row-column fashion but it suffered from the crosstalk problem for the non-scanned elements’ bypass currents, which were injected into array’s non-scanned electrodes from zero potential. Firstly, for suppressing the crosstalk problem, we designed a novel improved zero potential circuit with one more op-amp in negative feedback to sample the total bypass current and calculate the precision resistance of the element being tested (EBT with it. The improved setting non-scanned-electrode zero potential circuit (S-NSE-ZPC was given as an example for analyzing and verifying the performance of the improved zero potential circuit. Secondly, in the S-NSE-ZPC and the improved S-NSE-ZPC, the effects of different parameters of the resistive sensor arrays and their readout circuits on the EBT’s measurement accuracy were simulated with the NI Multisim 12. Thirdly, part features of the improved circuit were verified with the experiments of a prototype circuit. Followed, the results were discussed and the conclusions were given. The experiment results show that the improved circuit, though it requires one more op-amp, one more resistor and one more sampling channel, can access the EBT in the 2-D resistive sensor array more accurately.

  18. An Improved Zero Potential Circuit for Readout of a Two-Dimensional Resistive Sensor Array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Jian-Feng; Wang, Feng; Wang, Qi; Li, Jian-Qing; Song, Ai-Guo

    2016-12-06

    With one operational amplifier (op-amp) in negative feedback, the traditional zero potential circuit could access one element in the two-dimensional (2-D) resistive sensor array with the shared row-column fashion but it suffered from the crosstalk problem for the non-scanned elements' bypass currents, which were injected into array's non-scanned electrodes from zero potential. Firstly, for suppressing the crosstalk problem, we designed a novel improved zero potential circuit with one more op-amp in negative feedback to sample the total bypass current and calculate the precision resistance of the element being tested (EBT) with it. The improved setting non-scanned-electrode zero potential circuit (S-NSE-ZPC) was given as an example for analyzing and verifying the performance of the improved zero potential circuit. Secondly, in the S-NSE-ZPC and the improved S-NSE-ZPC, the effects of different parameters of the resistive sensor arrays and their readout circuits on the EBT's measurement accuracy were simulated with the NI Multisim 12. Thirdly, part features of the improved circuit were verified with the experiments of a prototype circuit. Followed, the results were discussed and the conclusions were given. The experiment results show that the improved circuit, though it requires one more op-amp, one more resistor and one more sampling channel, can access the EBT in the 2-D resistive sensor array more accurately.

  19. Spatially extended versus frontal cerebral near-infrared spectroscopy during cardiac surgery: a case series identifying potential advantages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rummel, Christian; Basciani, Reto; Nirkko, Arto; Schroth, Gerhard; Stucki, Monika; Reineke, David; Eberle, Balthasar; Kaiser, Heiko A.

    2018-01-01

    Stroke due to hypoperfusion or emboli is a devastating adverse event of cardiac surgery, but early detection and treatment could protect patients from an unfavorable postoperative course. Hypoperfusion and emboli can be detected with transcranial Doppler of the middle cerebral artery (MCA). The measured blood flow velocity correlates with cerebral oxygenation determined clinically by near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) of the frontal cortex. We tested the potential advantage of a spatially extended NIRS in detecting critical events in three cardiac surgery patients with a whole-head fiber holder of the FOIRE-3000 continuous-wave NIRS system. Principle components analysis was performed to differentiate between global and localized hypoperfusion or ischemic territories of the middle and anterior cerebral arteries. In one patient, we detected a critical hypoperfusion of the right MCA, which was not apparent in the frontal channels but was accompanied by intra- and postoperative neurological correlates of ischemia. We conclude that spatially extended NIRS of temporal and parietal vascular territories could improve the detection of critically low cerebral perfusion. Even in severe hemispheric stroke, NIRS of the frontal lobe may remain normal because the anterior cerebral artery can be supplied by the contralateral side directly or via the anterior communicating artery.

  20. Peripheral circadian misalignment: contributor to systemic insulin resistance and potential intervention to improve bariatric surgical outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunze, Kyle N.; Hanlon, Erin C.; Prachand, Vivek N.

    2016-01-01

    Thirteen percent of the world's population suffers from obesity and 39% from being overweight, which correlates with an increase in numerous secondary metabolic complications, such as Type 2 diabetes mellitus. Bariatric surgery is the most effective treatment for severe obesity and results in significant weight loss and the amelioration of obesity-related comorbidities through changes in enteroendocrine activity, caloric intake, and alterations in gut microbiota composition. The circadian system has recently been found to be a critical regulatory component in the control of metabolism and, thus, may potentially play an important role in inappropriate weight gain. Indeed, some behaviors and lifestyle factors associated with an increased risk of obesity are also risk factors for misalignment in the circadian clock system and for the metabolic syndrome. It is thus possible that alterations in peripheral circadian clocks in metabolically relevant tissues are a contributor to the current obesity epidemic. As such, it is plausible that postsurgical alterations in central circadian alignment, as well as peripheral gene expression in metabolic tissues may represent another mechanism for the beneficial effects of bariatric surgery. Bariatric surgery may represent an opportunity to identify changes in the circadian expression of clock genes that have been altered by environmental factors, allowing for a better understanding of the mechanism of action of surgery. These studies could also reveal an overlooked target for behavioral intervention to improve metabolic outcomes following bariatric surgery. PMID:27465735

  1. Identifying conservation priorities and management strategies based on ecosystem services to improve urban sustainability in Harbin, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Qu

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Rapid urbanization and agricultural development has resulted in the degradation of ecosystems, while also negatively impacting ecosystem services (ES and urban sustainability. Identifying conservation priorities for ES and applying reasonable management strategies have been found to be effective methods for mitigating this phenomenon. The purpose of this study is to propose a comprehensive framework for identifying ES conservation priorities and associated management strategies for these planning areas. First, we incorporated 10 ES indicators within a systematic conservation planning (SCP methodology in order to identify ES conservation priorities with high irreplaceability values based on conservation target goals associated with the potential distribution of ES indicators. Next, we assessed the efficiency of the ES conservation priorities for meeting the designated conservation target goals. Finally, ES conservation priorities were clustered into groups using a K-means clustering analysis in an effort to identify the dominant ES per location before formulating management strategies. We effectively identified 12 ES priorities to best represent conservation target goals for the ES indicators. These 12 priorities had a total areal coverage of 13,364 km2 representing 25.16% of the study area. The 12 priorities were further clustered into five significantly different groups (p-values between groups < 0.05, which helped to refine management strategies formulated to best enhance ES across the study area. The proposed method allows conservation and management plans to easily adapt to a wide variety of quantitative ES target goals within urban and agricultural areas, thereby preventing urban and agriculture sprawl and guiding sustainable urban development.

  2. A metagenomic viral discovery approach identifies potential zoonotic and novel mammalian viruses in Neoromicia bats within South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geldenhuys, Marike; Mortlock, Marinda; Weyer, Jacqueline; Bezuidt, Oliver; Seamark, Ernest C J; Kearney, Teresa; Gleasner, Cheryl; Erkkila, Tracy H; Cui, Helen; Markotter, Wanda

    2018-01-01

    Species within the Neoromicia bat genus are abundant and widely distributed in Africa. It is common for these insectivorous bats to roost in anthropogenic structures in urban regions. Additionally, Neoromicia capensis have previously been identified as potential hosts for Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)-related coronaviruses. This study aimed to ascertain the gastrointestinal virome of these bats, as viruses excreted in fecal material or which may be replicating in rectal or intestinal tissues have the greatest opportunities of coming into contact with other hosts. Samples were collected in five regions of South Africa over eight years. Initial virome composition was determined by viral metagenomic sequencing by pooling samples and enriching for viral particles. Libraries were sequenced on the Illumina MiSeq and NextSeq500 platforms, producing a combined 37 million reads. Bioinformatics analysis of the high throughput sequencing data detected the full genome of a novel species of the Circoviridae family, and also identified sequence data from the Adenoviridae, Coronaviridae, Herpesviridae, Parvoviridae, Papillomaviridae, Phenuiviridae, and Picornaviridae families. Metagenomic sequencing data was insufficient to determine the viral diversity of certain families due to the fragmented coverage of genomes and lack of suitable sequencing depth, as some viruses were detected from the analysis of reads-data only. Follow up conventional PCR assays targeting conserved gene regions for the Adenoviridae, Coronaviridae, and Herpesviridae families were used to confirm metagenomic data and generate additional sequences to determine genetic diversity. The complete coding genome of a MERS-related coronavirus was recovered with additional amplicon sequencing on the MiSeq platform. The new genome shared 97.2% overall nucleotide identity to a previous Neoromicia-associated MERS-related virus, also from South Africa. Conventional PCR analysis detected diverse adenovirus and

  3. Identifying areas of high economic-potential copper mineralization using ASTER data in the Urumieh-Dokhtar Volcanic Belt, Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pour, Amin Beiranvand; Hashim, Mazlan

    2012-02-01

    This study investigates the application of spectral image processing methods to ASTER data for mapping hydrothermal alteration zones associated with porphyry copper mineralization and related host rock. The study area is located in the southeastern segment of the Urumieh-Dokhtar Volcanic Belt of Iran. This area has been selected because it is a potential zone for exploration of new porphyry copper deposits. Spectral transform approaches, namely principal component analysis, band ratio and minimum noise fraction were used for mapping hydrothermally altered rocks and lithological units at regional scale. Spectral mapping methods, including spectral angle mapper, linear spectral unmixing, matched filtering and mixture tuned matched filtering were applied to differentiate hydrothermal alteration zones associated with porphyry copper mineralization such as phyllic, argillic and propylitic mineral assemblages.Spectral transform methods enhanced hydrothermally altered rocks associated with the known porphyry copper deposits and new identified prospects using shortwave infrared (SWIR) bands of ASTER. These methods showed the discrimination of quartz rich igneous rocks from the magmatic background and the boundary between igneous and sedimentary rocks using the thermal infrared (TIR) bands of ASTER at regional scale. Spectral mapping methods distinguished the sericitically- and argillically-altered rocks (the phyllic and argillic alteration zones) that surrounded by discontinuous to extensive zones of propylitized rocks (the propylitic alteration zone) using SWIR bands of ASTER at both regional and district scales. Linear spectral unmixing method can be best suited for distinguishing specific high economic-potential hydrothermal alteration zone (the phyllic zone) and mineral assemblages using SWIR bands of ASTER. Results have proven to be effective, and in accordance with the results of field surveying, spectral reflectance measurements and X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis

  4. Improved single particle potential for transport model simulations of nuclear reactions induced by rare isotope beams

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu Chang; Li Baoan

    2010-01-01

    Taking into account more accurately the isospin dependence of nucleon-nucleon interactions in the in-medium many-body force term of the Gogny effective interaction, new expressions for the single-nucleon potential and the symmetry energy are derived. Effects of both the spin (isospin) and the density dependence of nuclear effective interactions on the symmetry potential and the symmetry energy are examined. It is shown that they both play a crucial role in determining the symmetry potential and the symmetry energy at suprasaturation densities. The improved single-nucleon potential will be useful for more accurate simulation of nuclear reactions induced by rare-isotope beams within transport models.

  5. Pediatric crisis resource management training improves emergency medicine trainees' perceived ability to manage emergencies and ability to identify teamwork errors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bank, Ilana; Snell, Linda; Bhanji, Farhan

    2014-12-01

    Improved pediatric crisis resource management (CRM) training is needed in emergency medicine residencies because of the variable nature of exposure to critically ill pediatric patients during training. We created a short, needs-based pediatric CRM simulation workshop with postactivity follow-up to determine retention of CRM knowledge. Our aims were to provide a realistic learning experience for residents and to help the learners recognize common errors in teamwork and improve their perceived abilities to manage ill pediatric patients. Residents participated in a 4-hour objectives-based workshop derived from a formal needs assessment. To quantify their subjective abilities to manage pediatric cases, the residents completed a postworkshop survey (with a retrospective precomponent to assess perceived change). Ability to identify CRM errors was determined via a written assessment of scripted errors in a prerecorded video observed before and 1 month after completion of the workshop. Fifteen of the 16 eligible emergency medicine residents (postgraduate year 1-5) attended the workshop and completed the surveys. There were significant differences in 15 of 16 retrospective pre to post survey items using the Wilcoxon rank sum test for non-parametric data. These included ability to be an effective team leader in general (P < 0.008), delegating tasks appropriately (P < 0.009), and ability to ensure closed-loop communication (P < 0.008). There was a significant improvement in identification of CRM errors through the use of the video assessment from 3 of the 12 CRM errors to 7 of the 12 CRM errors (P < 0.006). The pediatric CRM simulation-based workshop improved the residents' self-perceptions of their pediatric CRM abilities and improved their performance on a video assessment task.

  6. Global analysis of WRKY transcription factor superfamily in Setaria identifies potential candidates involved in abiotic stress signalling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mehanathan eMuthamilarasan

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Transcription factors (TFs are major players in stress signalling and constitute an integral part of signalling networks. Among the major TFs, WRKY proteins play pivotal roles in regulation of transcriptional reprogramming associated with stress responses. In view of this, genome- and transcriptome-wide identification of WRKY TF family was performed in the C4 model plants, Setaria italica (SiWRKY and S. viridis (SvWRKY, respectively. The study identified 105 SiWRKY and 44 SvWRKY proteins that were computationally analysed for their physicochemical properties. Sequence alignment and phylogenetic analysis classified these proteins into three major groups, namely I, II and III with majority of WRKY proteins belonging to group II (53 SiWRKY and 23 SvWRKY, followed by group III (39 SiWRKY and 11 SvWRKY and group I (10 SiWRKY and 6 SvWRKY. Group II proteins were further classified into 5 subgroups (IIa to IIe based on their phylogeny. Domain analysis showed the presence of WRKY motif and zinc finger-like structures in these proteins along with additional domains in a few proteins. All SiWRKY genes were physically mapped on the S. italica genome and their duplication analysis revealed that 10 and 8 gene pairs underwent tandem and segmental duplications, respectively. Comparative mapping of SiWRKY and SvWRKY genes in related C4 panicoid genomes demonstrated the orthologous relationships between these genomes. In silico expression analysis of SiWRKY and SvWRKY genes showed their differential expression patterns in different tissues and stress conditions. Expression profiling of candidate SiWRKY genes in response to stress (dehydration and salinity and hormone treatments (abscisic acid, salicylic acid and methyl jasmonate suggested the putative involvement of SiWRKY066 and SiWRKY082 in stress and hormone signalling. These genes could be potential candidates for further characterization to delineate their functional roles in abiotic stress signalling.

  7. Global analysis of WRKY transcription factor superfamily in Setaria identifies potential candidates involved in abiotic stress signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthamilarasan, Mehanathan; Bonthala, Venkata S; Khandelwal, Rohit; Jaishankar, Jananee; Shweta, Shweta; Nawaz, Kashif; Prasad, Manoj

    2015-01-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) are major players in stress signaling and constitute an integral part of signaling networks. Among the major TFs, WRKY proteins play pivotal roles in regulation of transcriptional reprogramming associated with stress responses. In view of this, genome- and transcriptome-wide identification of WRKY TF family was performed in the C4model plants, Setaria italica (SiWRKY) and S. viridis (SvWRKY), respectively. The study identified 105 SiWRKY and 44 SvWRKY proteins that were computationally analyzed for their physicochemical properties. Sequence alignment and phylogenetic analysis classified these proteins into three major groups, namely I, II, and III with majority of WRKY proteins belonging to group II (53 SiWRKY and 23 SvWRKY), followed by group III (39 SiWRKY and 11 SvWRKY) and group I (10 SiWRKY and 6 SvWRKY). Group II proteins were further classified into 5 subgroups (IIa to IIe) based on their phylogeny. Domain analysis showed the presence of WRKY motif and zinc finger-like structures in these proteins along with additional domains in a few proteins. All SiWRKY genes were physically mapped on the S. italica genome and their duplication analysis revealed that 10 and 8 gene pairs underwent tandem and segmental duplications, respectively. Comparative mapping of SiWRKY and SvWRKY genes in related C4 panicoid genomes demonstrated the orthologous relationships between these genomes. In silico expression analysis of SiWRKY and SvWRKY genes showed their differential expression patterns in different tissues and stress conditions. Expression profiling of candidate SiWRKY genes in response to stress (dehydration and salinity) and hormone treatments (abscisic acid, salicylic acid, and methyl jasmonate) suggested the putative involvement of SiWRKY066 and SiWRKY082 in stress and hormone signaling. These genes could be potential candidates for further characterization to delineate their functional roles in abiotic stress signaling.

  8. Post Mortem Validation of MRI-Identified Veins on the Surface of the Cerebral Cortex as Potential Landmarks for Neurosurgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Günther Grabner

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Background and Objective: Image-guided neurosurgery uses information from a wide spectrum of methods to inform the neurosurgeon's judgement about which tissue to resect and which to spare. Imaging data are registered to the patient's skull so that they correspond to the intraoperative macro- and microscopic view. The correspondence between imaging and optical systems breaks down during surgery, however, as a result of cerebro-spinal fluid drain age, tissue resection, and gravity-based brain shift. In this work we investigate whether a map of surface veins, automatically segmented from MRI, could serve as additional reference system.Methods: Gradient-echo based T2*-weighted imaging was performed on two human cadavers heads using a 7 Tesla MRI scanner. Automatic vessel segmentation was performed using the Frangi vesselness filter, and surface renderings of vessels compared with photographs of the surface of the brain following craniotomy.Results: A high level of correspondence was established between vessel maps and the post autopsy photographs. Corresponding veins, including the prominent superior anastomotic veins, could be identified in all brain lobes.Conclusion: Automatic surface vessel segmentation is feasible and the high correspondence to post autopsy photographs indicates that they could be used as an additional reference system for image-guided neurosurgery in order to maintain the correspondence between imaging and optical systems.This has the advantage over a skull-based reference system that veins are clearly visible to the surgeon and move and deform with the underlying tissue, potentially making this surface net of landmarks robust to brain shift.

  9. Global analysis of WRKY transcription factor superfamily in Setaria identifies potential candidates involved in abiotic stress signaling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthamilarasan, Mehanathan; Bonthala, Venkata S.; Khandelwal, Rohit; Jaishankar, Jananee; Shweta, Shweta; Nawaz, Kashif; Prasad, Manoj

    2015-01-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) are major players in stress signaling and constitute an integral part of signaling networks. Among the major TFs, WRKY proteins play pivotal roles in regulation of transcriptional reprogramming associated with stress responses. In view of this, genome- and transcriptome-wide identification of WRKY TF family was performed in the C4model plants, Setaria italica (SiWRKY) and S. viridis (SvWRKY), respectively. The study identified 105 SiWRKY and 44 SvWRKY proteins that were computationally analyzed for their physicochemical properties. Sequence alignment and phylogenetic analysis classified these proteins into three major groups, namely I, II, and III with majority of WRKY proteins belonging to group II (53 SiWRKY and 23 SvWRKY), followed by group III (39 SiWRKY and 11 SvWRKY) and group I (10 SiWRKY and 6 SvWRKY). Group II proteins were further classified into 5 subgroups (IIa to IIe) based on their phylogeny. Domain analysis showed the presence of WRKY motif and zinc finger-like structures in these proteins along with additional domains in a few proteins. All SiWRKY genes were physically mapped on the S. italica genome and their duplication analysis revealed that 10 and 8 gene pairs underwent tandem and segmental duplications, respectively. Comparative mapping of SiWRKY and SvWRKY genes in related C4 panicoid genomes demonstrated the orthologous relationships between these genomes. In silico expression analysis of SiWRKY and SvWRKY genes showed their differential expression patterns in different tissues and stress conditions. Expression profiling of candidate SiWRKY genes in response to stress (dehydration and salinity) and hormone treatments (abscisic acid, salicylic acid, and methyl jasmonate) suggested the putative involvement of SiWRKY066 and SiWRKY082 in stress and hormone signaling. These genes could be potential candidates for further characterization to delineate their functional roles in abiotic stress signaling. PMID:26635818

  10. MALDI-TOF and SELDI-TOF analysis: “tandem” techniques to identify potential biomarker in fibromyalgia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Lucacchini

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Fibromyalgia (FM is characterized by the presence of chronic widespread pain throughout the musculoskeletal system and diffuse tenderness. Unfortunately, no laboratory tests have been appropriately validated for FM and correlated with the subsets and activity. The aim of this study was to apply a proteomic technique in saliva of FM patients: the Surface Enhance Laser Desorption/Ionization Time-of-Flight (SELDI-TOF. For this study, 57 FM patients and 35 HC patients were enrolled. The proteomic analysis of saliva was carried out using SELDI-TOF. The analysis was performed using different chip arrays with different characteristics of binding. The statistical analysis was performed using cluster analysis and the difference between two groups was underlined using Student’s t-test. Spectra analysis highlighted the presence of several peaks differently expressed in FM patients compared with controls. The preliminary results obtained by SELDI-TOF analysis were compared with those obtained in our previous study performed on whole saliva of FM patients by using electrophoresis. The m/z of two peaks, increased in FM patients, seem to overlap well with the molecular weight of calgranulin A and C and Rho GDP-dissociation inhibitor 2, which we had found up-regulated in our previous study. These preliminary results showed the possibility of identifying potential salivary biomarker through salivary proteomic analysis with MALDI-TOF and SELDI-TOF in FM patients. The peaks observed allow us to focus on some of the particular pathogenic aspects of FM, the oxidative stress which contradistinguishes this condition, the involvement of proteins related to the cytoskeletal arrangements, and central sensibilization.

  11. THP-1 monocytes but not macrophages as a potential alternative for CD34+ dendritic cells to identify chemical skin sensitizers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lambrechts, Nathalie; Verstraelen, Sandra; Lodewyckx, Hanne; Felicio, Ana; Hooyberghs, Jef; Witters, Hilda; Tendeloo, Viggo van; Cauwenberge, Paul van; Nelissen, Inge; Heuvel, Rosette van den; Schoeters, Greet

    2009-01-01

    Early detection of the sensitizing potential of chemicals is an emerging issue for chemical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries. In our institute, an in vitro classification model for prediction of chemical-induced skin sensitization based on gene expression signatures in human CD34 + progenitor-derived dendritic cells (DC) has been developed. This primary cell model is able to closely mimic the induction phase of sensitization by Langerhans cells in the skin, but it has drawbacks, such as the availability of cord blood. The aim of this study was to investigate whether human in vitro cultured THP-1 monocytes or macrophages display a similar expression profile for 13 predictive gene markers previously identified in DC and whether they also possess a discriminating capacity towards skin sensitizers and non-sensitizers based on these marker genes. To this end, the cell models were exposed to 5 skin sensitizers (ammonium hexachloroplatinate IV, 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene, eugenol, para-phenylenediamine, and tetramethylthiuram disulfide) and 5 non-sensitizers (L-glutamic acid, methyl salicylate, sodium dodecyl sulfate, tributyltin chloride, and zinc sulfate) for 6, 10, and 24 h, and mRNA expression of the 13 genes was analyzed using real-time RT-PCR. The transcriptional response of 7 out of 13 genes in THP-1 monocytes was significantly correlated with DC, whereas only 2 out of 13 genes in THP-1 macrophages. After a cross-validation of a discriminant analysis of the gene expression profiles in the THP-1 monocytes, this cell model demonstrated to also have a capacity to distinguish skin sensitizers from non-sensitizers. However, the DC model was superior to the monocyte model for discrimination of (non-)sensitizing chemicals.

  12. Improving the Assessment of Regional Economic Potential (on Example of Rostov Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikolai A. Kurianov

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The article discusses a number of problematic issues concerning the possibility of improving existing approaches to assessing regional economic potential. Based on the analysis of existing approaches it is concluded that presence of a number of inherent common disadvantages, which include the exclusion of complex assessment elements of intangible resources, isolation from development goals in the region, ignoring the possibility of incremental reserves development static evaluation results. To overcome these ambiguities the authors' approach to improving assessment procedures based on the allocation of the essential nature of the category «regional economic potential», which unites, on the one hand, the resources available for regional development (actual potential, and on the other hand, resources in respect of which the region has the opportunity to attract them as a tool for further development of (stochastic potential. As the degree of implementation of this option is determined by the quality of regional governance, the most important element of the economic potential of the region is also an effective mechanism for management of existing and potential resources of various types. The practical implementation of the proposed methodology suppose, for example, estimate the economic potential of the Rostov region. At the first stage of the evaluation determine the most important elements of this potential and their ranking, on the second – assessment of the status of these elements from the point of view of their availability, ability to attract and management efficiency, and the third – the normalized assessment of regional economic potential.

  13. A Cost Benefit Analysis Approach to Identify Improvements in Merchant Navy Deck Officers’ HELM (Human Element Leadership and Management Training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farhan Saeed

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available A review of maritime accidents conducted over the last decade confirms that human error is the main contributing factor in these incidents. Well-developed Non-Technical Skills (NTS can reduce the effects of human error. NTS include both interpersonal and cognitive skills such as situation awareness, teamwork, decision-making, leadership, managerial skills, communication and language skills. In a crisis situation good NTS allow a deck officer to recognise the problem quickly, take action to manage the situation, and utilise the available team members safely and effectively. This paper identifies the importance of NTS training for merchant navy deck officers. It also highlights room for improvement in the existing HELM training. Research has shown that at present the structure of HELM training is not very effective. The other safety critical domains’ efforts into NTS developments are investigated and examples of best practice are adapted into the maritime domain’s NTS training. Suggestions are given for improvements to the HELM course based on proven successful methods in other safety critical domains (aviation and anaesthesia. A subsequent Cost Benefit Analysis for improving deck officers’ NTS is also carried out through the use of Bayesian Networks and Decision Tree Modelling.

  14. Improvement potential of a real geothermal power plant using advanced exergy analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gökgedik, Harun; Yürüsoy, Muhammet; Keçebaş, Ali

    2016-01-01

    The main purpose of this paper is to quantitatively evaluate thermodynamic performance of a geothermal power plant (GPP) from potential for improvement point of view. Thus, sources of inefficiency and irreversibilities can be determined through exergy analysis. The advanced exergy analysis is more appropriate to determine real potential for thermodynamic improvements of the system by splitting exergy destruction into unavoidable and avoidable portions. The performance critical components and the potential for exergy efficiency improvement of a GPP were determined by means of the advanced exergy analysis. This plant is the Bereket GPP in Denizli/Turkey as a current operating system. The results show that the avoidable portion of exergy destruction in all components except for the turbines is higher than the unavoidable value. Therefore, much can be made to lessen the irreversibilities for components of the Bereket GPP. The total exergy efficiency of the system is found to be 9.60%. Its efficiency can be increased up to 15.40% by making improvements in the overall components. Although the heat exchangers had lower exergy and modified exergy efficiencies, their exergy improvement potentials were high. Finally, in the plant, the old technology is believed to be one of the main reasons for low efficiencies. - Highlights: • Evaluation of potential for improvement of a GPP using advanced exergy analysis. • Efficiency can be increased up to 15.40% by making improvements in the components. • Heat exchangers are the highest avoidable values, making them the least efficient components in plant. • The main reasons for low efficiencies are believed to be the old technology.

  15. Effect of an improved molecular potential on strong-field tunneling ionization of molecules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhao Songfeng; Jin Cheng; Le, Anh-Thu; Lin, C. D.

    2010-01-01

    We study the effect of one-electron model potentials on the tunneling ionization rates of molecules in strong fields. By including electron correlation using the modified Leeuwen-Baerends (LB α) model, the binding energies of outer shells of molecules are significantly improved. However, we show that the tunneling ionization rates from the LB α do not differ much from the earlier calculations [Phys. Rev. A 81, 033423 (2010)], in which the local correlation potential was neglected.

  16. Potential hazards to embryo implantation: A human endometrial in vitro model to identify unwanted antigestagenic actions of chemicals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fischer, L.; Deppert, W.R.; Pfeifer, D.; Stanzel, S.; Weimer, M.; Hanjalic-Beck, A.; Stein, A.; Straßer, M.; Zahradnik, H.P.; Schaefer, W.R.

    2012-01-01

    Embryo implantation is a crucial step in human reproduction and depends on the timely development of a receptive endometrium. The human endometrium is unique among adult tissues due to its dynamic alterations during each menstrual cycle. It hosts the implantation process which is governed by progesterone, whereas 17β-estradiol regulates the preceding proliferation of the endometrium. The receptors for both steroids are targets for drugs and endocrine disrupting chemicals. Chemicals with unwanted antigestagenic actions are potentially hazardous to embryo implantation since many pharmaceutical antiprogestins adversely affect endometrial receptivity. This risk can be addressed by human tissue-specific in vitro assays. As working basis we compiled data on chemicals interacting with the PR. In our experimental work, we developed a flexible in vitro model based on human endometrial Ishikawa cells. Effects of antiprogestin compounds on pre-selected target genes were characterized by sigmoidal concentration–response curves obtained by RT-qPCR. The estrogen sulfotransferase (SULT1E1) was identified as the most responsive target gene by microarray analysis. The agonistic effect of progesterone on SULT1E1 mRNA was concentration-dependently antagonized by RU486 (mifepristone) and ZK137316 and, with lower potency, by 4-nonylphenol, bisphenol A and apigenin. The negative control methyl acetoacetate showed no effect. The effects of progesterone and RU486 were confirmed on the protein level by Western blotting. We demonstrated proof of principle that our Ishikawa model is suitable to study quantitatively effects of antiprogestin-like chemicals on endometrial target genes in comparison to pharmaceutical reference compounds. This test is useful for hazard identification and may contribute to reduce animal studies. -- Highlights: ► We compare progesterone receptor-mediated endometrial effects of chemicals and drugs. ► 4-Nonylphenol, bisphenol A and apigenin exert weak

  17. Potential hazards to embryo implantation: A human endometrial in vitro model to identify unwanted antigestagenic actions of chemicals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fischer, L.; Deppert, W.R. [Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University Hospital Freiburg (Germany); Pfeifer, D. [Department of Hematology and Oncology, University Hospital Freiburg (Germany); Stanzel, S.; Weimer, M. [Department of Biostatistics, German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg (Germany); Hanjalic-Beck, A.; Stein, A.; Straßer, M.; Zahradnik, H.P. [Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University Hospital Freiburg (Germany); Schaefer, W.R., E-mail: wolfgang.schaefer@uniklinik-freiburg.de [Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University Hospital Freiburg (Germany)

    2012-05-01

    Embryo implantation is a crucial step in human reproduction and depends on the timely development of a receptive endometrium. The human endometrium is unique among adult tissues due to its dynamic alterations during each menstrual cycle. It hosts the implantation process which is governed by progesterone, whereas 17β-estradiol regulates the preceding proliferation of the endometrium. The receptors for both steroids are targets for drugs and endocrine disrupting chemicals. Chemicals with unwanted antigestagenic actions are potentially hazardous to embryo implantation since many pharmaceutical antiprogestins adversely affect endometrial receptivity. This risk can be addressed by human tissue-specific in vitro assays. As working basis we compiled data on chemicals interacting with the PR. In our experimental work, we developed a flexible in vitro model based on human endometrial Ishikawa cells. Effects of antiprogestin compounds on pre-selected target genes were characterized by sigmoidal concentration–response curves obtained by RT-qPCR. The estrogen sulfotransferase (SULT1E1) was identified as the most responsive target gene by microarray analysis. The agonistic effect of progesterone on SULT1E1 mRNA was concentration-dependently antagonized by RU486 (mifepristone) and ZK137316 and, with lower potency, by 4-nonylphenol, bisphenol A and apigenin. The negative control methyl acetoacetate showed no effect. The effects of progesterone and RU486 were confirmed on the protein level by Western blotting. We demonstrated proof of principle that our Ishikawa model is suitable to study quantitatively effects of antiprogestin-like chemicals on endometrial target genes in comparison to pharmaceutical reference compounds. This test is useful for hazard identification and may contribute to reduce animal studies. -- Highlights: ► We compare progesterone receptor-mediated endometrial effects of chemicals and drugs. ► 4-Nonylphenol, bisphenol A and apigenin exert weak

  18. Identifying cultural representations of families and the health team to improve the management of severe malnutrition in childhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo-Carniglia, Alvaro; Weisstaub, Sergio Gerardo; Aguirre, Patricia; Aguilar, Ana María; Araya, Magdalena

    2010-04-01

    Severe childhood malnutrition is no longer a priority in Latin America, but mortality of hospitalized malnourished children continues to be high, especially in Bolivia. The objective of the present study was to identify cultural representations in mothers and in health personnel that might influence the relationship between the family and the provider's health care services, thus affecting the treatment of malnourished children. We applied a flexible qualitative model of cases and controls (mothers or caregivers of both under- and well-nourished children), and in addition, health personnel. Results were analyzed following semiotics of statements. Mothers and health professionals based their cultural representations on different conceptions of health. The mothers' mindset indicated that traditional Andean medicine and public health systems are complementary and not contradictory. Conversely, health personnel expressed a univocal vision, accepting only biomedicine. Furthermore, they also expressed a negative attitude toward mothers of severely malnourished children. Results should be considered to improve ongoing local health programs.

  19. Eco-Efficiency Assessments as a Tool for Revealing the Environmental Improvement Potential of New Regulations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ottar Michelsen

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Public regulations can result in improved environmental performance of products. In this paper eco-efficiency is used to assess the most likely outcome of potential new regulations. The paper presents a case study of furniture production in Norway where different scenarios for improving the environmental performance of the products are presented. Four regulatory options for imposing environmental improvements are assessed; (1 an introduction of a tax on emissions, (2 an increase of the tax on landfills, (3 an introduction of a tax on raw material consumption, and (4 introduction of take-back legislation.

  20. Potentials of Information and Organisational Process Improvement Through Trained Office Staff

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chromjaková Felicita

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the main possibilities on how to improve the production rate, total ef- ficiency and profit-cost ratio in the administrative processes of public administrative offices. The results that are realized from this research serves as an important output for public administration offices in Slovakia. Process improvements can be achieved through the efficient utilization of own-staff potentials, especially by the optimal use of training modules. Well trained own-staff can radically improve the efficiency of office works, jobs and processes and can influence the satisfaction of internal and external stakeholders.

  1. Identifying Potential Mediators and Moderators of the Association between Child Maltreatment and Bullying Perpetration and Victimization in School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Jun Sung; Espelage, Dorothy L.; Grogan-Kaylor, Andrew; Allen-Meares, Paula

    2012-01-01

    A growing body of literature is demonstrating associations between childhood maltreatment and bullying involvement at school. In this literature review, four potential mediators (explanatory) and three potential moderators (mitigates or exacerbates) of the association between childhood maltreatment and school bullying are proposed. Mediators…

  2. Towards a Diagnostic Instrument to Identify Improvement Opportunities for Quality Controlled Logistics in Agrifood Supply Chain Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jack G.A.J. van der Vorst

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available  Western-European consumers have become not only more demanding on product availability in retail outlets but also on other food attributes such as quality, integrity, and safety. When (redesigning food supply-chain networks, from a logistics point of view, one has to consider these demands next to traditional efficiency and responsiveness requirements. The concept ‘quality controlled logistics’ (QCL hypothesizes that if product quality in each step of the supply chain can be predicted in advance, goods flows can be controlled in a pro-active manner and better chain designs can be established resulting in higher product availability, constant quality, and less product losses. The paper discusses opportunities of using real-time product quality information for improvement of the design and management of ‘AgriFood Supply Chain Networks’, and presents a preliminary diagnostic instrument for assessment of ‘critical quality’ and ‘logistics control’ points in the supply chain network. Results of a tomato-chain case illustrate the added value of the QCL concept for identifying improvement opportunities in the supply chain as to increase both product availability and quality. Future research aims for the further development of the diagnostic instrument and the quantification of costs and benefits of QCL scenarios.

  3. Optimum outlier model for potential improvement of environmental cleaning and disinfection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rupp, Mark E; Huerta, Tomas; Cavalieri, R J; Lyden, Elizabeth; Van Schooneveld, Trevor; Carling, Philip; Smith, Philip W

    2014-06-01

    The effectiveness and efficiency of 17 housekeepers in terminal cleaning 292 hospital rooms was evaluated through adenosine triphosphate detection. A subgroup of housekeepers was identified who were significantly more effective and efficient than their coworkers. These optimum outliers may be used in performance improvement to optimize environmental cleaning.

  4. Using geographical information systems to identify populations in need of improved accessibility to antivenom treatment for snakebite envenoming in Costa Rica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Hansson

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Snakebite accidents are an important health problem in rural areas of tropical countries worldwide, including Costa Rica, where most bites are caused by the pit-viper Bothrops asper. The treatment of these potentially fatal accidents is based on the timely administration of specific antivenom. In many regions of the world, insufficient health care systems and lack of antivenom in remote and poor areas where snakebites are common, means that efficient treatment is unavailable for many snakebite victims, leading to unnecessary mortality and morbidity. In this study, geographical information systems (GIS were used to identify populations in Costa Rica with a need of improved access to antivenom treatment: those living in areas with a high risk of snakebites and long time to reach antivenom treatment. METHOD/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Populations living in areas with high risk of snakebites were identified using two approaches: one based on the district-level reported incidence, and another based on mapping environmental factors favoring B. asper presence. Time to reach treatment using ambulance was estimated using cost surface analysis, thereby enabling adjustment of transportation speed by road availability and quality, topography and land use. By mapping populations in high risk of snakebites and the estimated time to treatment, populations with need of improved treatment access were identified. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: This study demonstrates the usefulness of GIS for improving treatment of snakebites. By mapping reported incidence, risk factors, location of existing treatment resources, and the time estimated to reach these for at-risk populations, rational allocation of treatment resources is facilitated.

  5. Improving the variational path integral approach to the quantum double-well potential

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bao Jingdong; Wang Hongyu

    2002-01-01

    An improved variational path integral approach is developed and applied to the quantum double-well potential, in which part of the quartic term of the potential is included in the trial action. The expression of the effective classical potential (ECP) under a non-Gaussian expectation is obtained. Here the frequency and fourth-order derivative of the potential are treated as two variational parameters, determined by the minimization of the ECP at each point. We calculate the ECP, the free energy and the level splitting of a symmetrical double-well potential. It is shown that the present results are better than those of the Feynman-Kleinert Gaussian variational method. (author)

  6. Improving the identification of people with dementia in primary care: evaluation of the impact of primary care dementia coding guidance on identified prevalence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, Paul; Banerjee, Sube; Watt, Jen; Adleman, Rosalyn; Agoe, Belinda; Burnie, Nerida; Carefull, Alex; Chandan, Kiran; Constable, Dominie; Daniels, Mark; Davies, David; Deshmukh, Sid; Huddart, Martin; Jabin, Ashrafi; Jarrett, Penelope; King, Jenifer; Koch, Tamar; Kumar, Sanjoy; Lees, Stavroula; Mir, Sinan; Naidoo, Dominic; Nyame, Sylvia; Sasae, Ryuichiro; Sharma, Tushar; Thormod, Clare; Vedavanam, Krish; Wilton, Anja; Flaherty, Breda

    2013-12-23

    Improving dementia care is a policy priority nationally and internationally; there is a 'diagnosis gap' with less than half of the cases of dementia ever diagnosed. The English Health Department's Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF) encourages primary care recognition and recording of dementia. The codes for dementia are complex with the possibility of underidentification through miscoding. We developed guidance on coding of dementia; we report the impact of applying this to 'clean up' dementia coding and records at a practice level. The guidance had five elements: (1) identify Read Codes for dementia; (2) access QOF dementia register; (3) generate lists of patients who may have dementia; (4) compare search with QOF data and (5) review cases. In each practice, one general practitioner conducted the exercise. The number of dementia QOF registers before and after the exercise was recorded with the hours taken to complete the exercise. London primary care. 23 (85%) of 27 practices participated, covering 79 312 (19 562 over 65 s) participants. The number on dementia QOF registers; time taken. The number of people with dementia on QOF registers increased from 1007 to 1139 (χ(2)=8.17, p=0.004), raising identification rates by 8.8%. It took 4.7 h per practice, on an average. These data demonstrate the potential of a simple primary care coding exercise, requiring no specific training, to increase the dementia identification rate. An improvement of 8.8% between 2011 and 2012 is equivalent to that of the fourth most improved primary care trust in the UK. In absolute terms, if this effects were mirrored across the UK primary care, the number of cases with dementia identified would rise by over 70 000 from 364 329 to 434 488 raising the recognition rate from 46% to 54.8%. Implementing this exercise appears to be a simple and effective way to improve recognition rates in primary care.

  7. Genetic variation in degradability of wheat straw and potential for improvement through plant breeding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jacob Wagner; Magid, Jakob; Hansen-Møller, Jens

    2011-01-01

    contemporary gene pool. The cultivars were grown at two different locations to assess the potential for breeding for improved degradability. The straws exhibited much variation in degradability ranging from 258 g kg1 to 407 g kg1 of dry matter. The heritability for degradability was estimated to 29% indicating...... a reasonable potential for response to selection. Inclusion of height as a regression-term, indicated that only a minor part of genetic differences are directly related to plant height and that improvements in degradability may be achieved without unacceptable changes in straw length. Finally, a lack...... of correlation between degradability and grain yield indicated that straw degradability may be improved through breeding without serious negative effect on grain yield....

  8. Improving Cardiac Action Potential Measurements: 2D and 3D Cell Culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daily, Neil J; Yin, Yue; Kemanli, Pinar; Ip, Brian; Wakatsuki, Tetsuro

    2015-11-01

    Progress in the development of assays for measuring cardiac action potential is crucial for the discovery of drugs for treating cardiac disease and assessing cardiotoxicity. Recently, high-throughput methods for assessing action potential using induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) derived cardiomyocytes in both two-dimensional monolayer cultures and three-dimensional tissues have been developed. We describe an improved method for assessing cardiac action potential using an ultra-fast cost-effective plate reader with commercially available dyes. Our methods improve dramatically the detection of the fluorescence signal from these dyes and make way for the development of more high-throughput methods for cardiac drug discovery and cardiotoxicity.

  9. Valuing the Potential Benefits of Water Quality Improvements in Watersheds Affected by Non-Point Source Pollution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Alvarez

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Nonpoint source (NPS pollution has been identified by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA as “the nation’s largest water quality problem”. Urban development, septic systems, and agricultural operations have been identified as the major sources of diffuse pollution in surface and ground water bodies. In recent decades, urban and agricultural Best Management Practices (BMP have been developed in several states to address agricultural water quality and water use impacts, including the reduction of nutrient loads to help meet water quality standards. Compliance with BMPs is associated with some costs to local governments, homeowners, and agricultural operations, but the improvements in water quality associated with BMP adoption are expected to yield significant benefits to society in the form of improved recreational opportunities, navigation, flood control, and ecosystem health. The development of sound policies and decision making processes require balancing the costs of BMP adoption to the agricultural operations with the social benefits to be derived from the improved water quality. In this paper we develop a benefits transfer model to provide estimates of the economic benefits of properly implemented and effective Best Management Practices (BMP throughout the state of Florida. These benefit estimates can be used in a cost-benefit framework to determine the optimal level of BMP adoption throughout the state of Florida and provide a framework for other regions to estimate the potential benefits of BMP-mediated water quality improvements.

  10. Mobile Phone Apps to Improve Medication Adherence: A Systematic Stepwise Process to Identify High-Quality Apps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santo, Karla; Richtering, Sarah S; Chalmers, John; Thiagalingam, Aravinda; Chow, Clara K; Redfern, Julie

    2016-12-02

    There are a growing number of mobile phone apps available to support people in taking their medications and to improve medication adherence. However, little is known about how these apps differ in terms of features, quality, and effectiveness. We aimed to systematically review the medication reminder apps available in the Australian iTunes store and Google Play to assess their features and their quality in order to identify high-quality apps. This review was conducted in a similar manner to a systematic review by using a stepwise approach that included (1) a search strategy; (2) eligibility assessment; (3) app selection process through an initial screening of all retrieved apps and full app review of the included apps; (4) data extraction using a predefined set of features considered important or desirable in medication reminder apps; (5) analysis by classifying the apps as basic and advanced medication reminder apps and scoring and ranking them; and (6) a quality assessment by using the Mobile App Rating Scale (MARS), a reliable tool to assess mobile health apps. We identified 272 medication reminder apps, of which 152 were found only in Google Play, 87 only in iTunes, and 33 in both app stores. Apps found in Google Play had more customer reviews, higher star ratings, and lower cost compared with apps in iTunes. Only 109 apps were available for free and 124 were recently updated in 2015 or 2016. Overall, the median number of features per app was 3.0 (interquartile range 4.0) and only 18 apps had ≥9 of the 17 desirable features. The most common features were flexible scheduling that was present in 56.3% (153/272) of the included apps, medication tracking history in 54.8% (149/272), snooze option in 34.9% (95/272), and visual aids in 32.4% (88/272). We classified 54.8% (149/272) of the included apps as advanced medication reminder apps and 45.2% (123/272) as basic medication reminder apps. The advanced apps had a higher number of features per app compared with the

  11. Identifying barriers to mental health system improvements: an examination of community participation in assertive community treatment programs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wakefield Patricia A

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Integrating the best available evidence into program standards is essential if system-wide improvements in the delivery of community-based mental health services are to be achieved. Since the beginning of the Assertive Community Treatment (ACT program movement, program standards have included a role for the community. In particular, ACT program standards have sought to ensure that members of the local community are involved in governance and that former clients participate in service delivery as "Peer Support Specialists". This paper reports on the extent to which ACT program standards related to community participation have been implemented and identifies barriers to full compliance. Methods Qualitative and quantitative data were collected through a telephone survey of ACT Program Coordinators in Ontario, Canada, using a census sample of the existing 66 ACT programs. A thematic approach to content analysis was used to analyze respondents' qualitative comments. Quantitative data were analyzed using SPSS 16.0 and included means, frequencies, independent t-tests and Pearson Correlations. Results An 85% response rate was achieved. Of the 33 program standards, the two that received the lowest perceived compliance ratings were the two standards directly concerning community participation. Specifically, the standard to have a functioning Community Advisory Body and the standard requiring the inclusion of a Peer Support Specialist. The three major themes that emerged from the survey data with respect to the barriers to fully implementing the Community Advisory Body were: external issues; standard related issues; and, organizational/structural related issues. The three major themes concerning barriers to implementing the Peer Support Specialist role were: human resource related issues; organizational/structural related issues; and, standard related issues. Conclusions The reasons for low compliance of ACT programs with community

  12. A diagnostic of knowledge management processes at the restaurant industry SMEs to identify improvements at their productive processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alonso Perez-Soltero

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: This paper is the result of an investigation performed in northwest Mexico with the objective to analyze and diagnose knowledge management (KM processes in small and midsize restaurants. The main purpose of this study was to identify the present state of KM processes in these organizations as a way to identify improvement opportunities as well as to define facilitators and barriers that could difficult the implementation of KM initiatives.Design/methodology/approach: The study was performed in 12 restaurants and two types of questionnaires were applied. The questionnaires were applied to managers and personnel. The questionnaires analyzed knowledge Identification/location, Acquisition/learning, Development, Distribution/transference, Utilization/Application, Preservation/maintenance, and Assessment/valuation.Findings: We found that the respondents agreed that five of the GC processes have an acceptable level of development, while less developed processes were the Preservation/maintenance and Assessment/valuation of knowledge. On the other hand, the main facilitators to implementing KM initiatives are the availability of entrepreneurs to participate, staff responsive to the needs of the company, and staff is willing to share their knowledge. The main barriers are resistance to change, low level of knowledge in the use of technology by some members of the organization; difficulty accepting a strategic plan including knowledge management and unwillingness to document good practices.Originality/value: It is a novel study in Latin America, since no similar work in this productive sector has been found. Additionally, the study has a methodological approach that simultaneously addresses the analysis of the processes of knowledge management, and the identification of facilitators and barriers to implementing knowledge management initiatives.

  13. Identifying critical steps towards improved access to innovation in cancer care: a European CanCer Organisation position paper.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aapro, Matti; Astier, Alain; Audisio, Riccardo; Banks, Ian; Bedossa, Pierre; Brain, Etienne; Cameron, David; Casali, Paolo; Chiti, Arturo; De Mattos-Arruda, Leticia; Kelly, Daniel; Lacombe, Denis; Nilsson, Per J; Piccart, Martine; Poortmans, Philip; Riklund, Katrine; Saeter, Gunnar; Schrappe, Martin; Soffietti, Riccardo; Travado, Luzia; van Poppel, Hein; Wait, Suzanne; Naredi, Peter

    2017-09-01

    In recent decades cancer care has seen improvements in the speed and accuracy of diagnostic procedures; the effectiveness of surgery, radiation therapy and medical treatments; the power of information technology; and the development of multidisciplinary, specialist-led approaches to care. Such innovations are essential if we are to continue improving the lives of cancer patients across Europe despite financial pressures on our healthcare systems. Investment in innovation must be balanced with the need to ensure the sustainability of healthcare budgets, and all health professionals have a responsibility to help achieve this balance. It requires scrutiny of the way care is delivered; we must be ready to discontinue practices or interventions that are inefficient, and prioritise innovations that may deliver the best outcomes possible for patients within the limits of available resources. Decisions on innovations should take into account their long-term impact on patient outcomes and costs, not just their immediate costs. Adopting a culture of innovation requires a multidisciplinary team approach, with the patient at the centre and an integral part of the team. It must take a whole-system and whole-patient perspective on cancer care and be guided by high-quality real-world data, including outcomes relevant to the patient and actual costs of care; this accurately reflects the impact of any innovation in clinical practice. The European CanCer Organisation is committed to working with its member societies, patient organisations and the cancer community at large to find sustainable ways to identify and integrate the most meaningful innovations into all aspects of cancer care. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Biodiversity and Climate Modeling Workshop Series: Identifying gaps and needs for improving large-scale biodiversity models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiskopf, S. R.; Myers, B.; Beard, T. D.; Jackson, S. T.; Tittensor, D.; Harfoot, M.; Senay, G. B.

    2017-12-01

    At the global scale, well-accepted global circulation models and agreed-upon scenarios for future climate from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are available. In contrast, biodiversity modeling at the global scale lacks analogous tools. While there is great interest in development of similar bodies and efforts for international monitoring and modelling of biodiversity at the global scale, equivalent modelling tools are in their infancy. This lack of global biodiversity models compared to the extensive array of general circulation models provides a unique opportunity to bring together climate, ecosystem, and biodiversity modeling experts to promote development of integrated approaches in modeling global biodiversity. Improved models are needed to understand how we are progressing towards the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, many of which are not on track to meet the 2020 goal, threatening global biodiversity conservation, monitoring, and sustainable use. We brought together biodiversity, climate, and remote sensing experts to try to 1) identify lessons learned from the climate community that can be used to improve global biodiversity models; 2) explore how NASA and other remote sensing products could be better integrated into global biodiversity models and 3) advance global biodiversity modeling, prediction, and forecasting to inform the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, and the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Global Assessment of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. The 1st In-Person meeting focused on determining a roadmap for effective assessment of biodiversity model projections and forecasts by 2030 while integrating and assimilating remote sensing data and applying lessons learned, when appropriate, from climate modeling. Here, we present the outcomes and lessons learned from our first E-discussion and in-person meeting and discuss the next steps for future meetings.

  15. Applying the Trigger Review Method after a brief educational intervention: potential for teaching and improving safety in GP specialty training?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKay, John; de Wet, Carl; Kelly, Moya; Bowie, Paul

    2013-08-30

    The Trigger Review Method (TRM) is a structured approach to screening clinical records for undetected patient safety incidents (PSIs) and identifying learning and improvement opportunities. In Scotland, TRM participation can inform GP appraisal and has been included as a core component of the national primary care patient safety programme that was launched in March 2013. However, the clinical workforce needs up-skilled and the potential of TRM in GP training has yet to be tested. Current TRM training utilizes a workplace face-to-face session by a GP expert, which is not feasible. A less costly, more sustainable educational intervention is necessary to build capability at scale. We aimed to determine the feasibility and impact of TRM and a related training intervention in GP training. We recruited 25 west of Scotland GP trainees to attend a 2-hour TRM workshop. Trainees then applied TRM to 25 clinical records and returned findings within 4-weeks. A follow-up feedback workshop was held. 21/25 trainees (84%) completed the task. 520 records yielded 80 undetected PSIs (15.4%). 36/80 were judged potentially preventable (45%) with 35/80 classified as causing moderate to severe harm (44%). Trainees described a range of potential learning and improvement plans. Training was positively received and appeared to be successful given these findings. TRM was valued as a safety improvement tool by most participants. This small study provides further evidence of TRM utility and how to teach it pragmatically. TRM is of potential value in GP patient safety curriculum delivery and preparing trainees for future safety improvement expectations.

  16. Molecular genetic improvements of cyanobacteria to enhance the industrial potential of the microbe: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Tylor J; Gibbons, Jaimie L; Gu, Liping; Zhou, Ruanbao; Gibbons, William R

    2016-11-01

    The rapid increase in worldwide population coupled with the increasing demand for fossil fuels has led to an increased urgency to develop sustainable sources of energy and chemicals from renewable resources. Using microorganisms to produce high-value chemicals and next-generation biofuels is one sustainable option and is the focus of much current research. Cyanobacteria are ideal platform organisms for chemical and biofuel production because they can be genetically engineered to produce a broad range of products directly from CO 2 , H 2 O, and sunlight, and require minimal nutrient inputs. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview on advances that have been or could be made to improve strains of cyanobacteria for industrial purposes. First, the benefits of using cyanobacteria as a platform for chemical and biofuel production are discussed. Next, an overview of cyanobacterial strain improvements by genetic engineering is provided. Finally, mutagenesis techniques to improve the industrial potential of cyanobacteria are described. Along with providing an overview on various areas of research that are currently being investigated to improve the industrial potential of cyanobacteria, this review aims to elucidate potential targets for future research involving cyanobacteria as an industrial microorganism. © 2016 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Biotechnol. Prog., 32:1357-1371, 2016. © 2016 American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

  17. Identifying and Evaluating Options for Improving Sediment Management and Fish Passage at Hydropower Dams in the Lower Mekong River Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wild, T. B.; Reed, P. M.; Loucks, D. P.

    2015-12-01

    The Mekong River basin in Southeast Asia is undergoing intensive and pervasive hydropower development to satisfy demand for increased energy and income to support its growing population of 60 million people. Just 20 years ago this river flowed freely. Today some 30 large dams exist in the basin, and over 100 more are being planned for construction. These dams will alter the river's natural water, sediment and nutrient flows, thereby impacting river morphology and ecosystems, and will fragment fish migration pathways. In doing so, they will degrade one of the world's most valuable and productive freshwater fish habitats. For those dams that have not yet been constructed, there still exist opportunities to modify their siting, design and operation (SDO) to potentially achieve a more balanced set of tradeoffs among hydropower production, sediment/nutrient passage and fish passage. We introduce examples of such alternative SDO opportunities for Sambor Dam in Cambodia, planned to be constructed on the main stem of the Mekong River. To evaluate the performance of such alternatives, we developed a Python-based simulation tool called PySedSim. PySedSim is a daily time step mass balance model that identifies the relative tradeoffs among hydropower production, and flow and sediment regime alteration, associated with reservoir sediment management techniques such as flushing, sluicing, bypassing, density current venting and dredging. To date, there has been a very limited acknowledgement or evaluation of the significant uncertainties that impact the evaluation of SDO alternatives. This research is formalizing a model diagnostic assessment of the key assumptions and parametric uncertainties that strongly influence PySedSim SDO evaluations. Using stochastic hydrology and sediment load data, our diagnostic assessment evaluates and compares several Sambor Dam alternatives using several performance measures related to energy production, sediment trapping and regime alteration, and

  18. Identifying barriers and improving communication between cancer service providers and Aboriginal patients and their families: the perspective of service providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahid, Shaouli; Durey, Angela; Bessarab, Dawn; Aoun, Samar M; Thompson, Sandra C

    2013-11-04

    Aboriginal Australians experience poorer outcomes from cancer compared to the non-Aboriginal population. Some progress has been made in understanding Aboriginal Australians' perspectives about cancer and their experiences with cancer services. However, little is known of cancer service providers' (CSPs) thoughts and perceptions regarding Aboriginal patients and their experiences providing optimal cancer care to Aboriginal people. Communication between Aboriginal patients and non-Aboriginal health service providers has been identified as an impediment to good Aboriginal health outcomes. This paper reports on CSPs' views about the factors impairing communication and offers practical strategies for promoting effective communication with Aboriginal patients in Western Australia (WA). A qualitative study involving in-depth interviews with 62 Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal CSPs from across WA was conducted between March 2006-September 2007 and April-October 2011. CSPs were asked to share their experiences with Aboriginal patients and families experiencing cancer. Thematic analysis was carried out. Our analysis was primarily underpinned by the socio-ecological model, but concepts of Whiteness and privilege, and cultural security also guided our analysis. CSPs' lack of knowledge about the needs of Aboriginal people with cancer and Aboriginal patients' limited understanding of the Western medical system were identified as the two major impediments to communication. For effective patient-provider communication, attention is needed to language, communication style, knowledge and use of medical terminology and cross-cultural differences in the concept of time. Aboriginal marginalization within mainstream society and Aboriginal people's distrust of the health system were also key issues impacting on communication. Potential solutions to effective Aboriginal patient-provider communication included recruiting more Aboriginal staff, providing appropriate cultural training for CSPs

  19. Identifying barriers and improving communication between cancer service providers and Aboriginal patients and their families: the perspective of service providers

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Aboriginal Australians experience poorer outcomes from cancer compared to the non-Aboriginal population. Some progress has been made in understanding Aboriginal Australians’ perspectives about cancer and their experiences with cancer services. However, little is known of cancer service providers’ (CSPs) thoughts and perceptions regarding Aboriginal patients and their experiences providing optimal cancer care to Aboriginal people. Communication between Aboriginal patients and non-Aboriginal health service providers has been identified as an impediment to good Aboriginal health outcomes. This paper reports on CSPs’ views about the factors impairing communication and offers practical strategies for promoting effective communication with Aboriginal patients in Western Australia (WA). Methods A qualitative study involving in-depth interviews with 62 Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal CSPs from across WA was conducted between March 2006 - September 2007 and April-October 2011. CSPs were asked to share their experiences with Aboriginal patients and families experiencing cancer. Thematic analysis was carried out. Our analysis was primarily underpinned by the socio-ecological model, but concepts of Whiteness and privilege, and cultural security also guided our analysis. Results CSPs’ lack of knowledge about the needs of Aboriginal people with cancer and Aboriginal patients’ limited understanding of the Western medical system were identified as the two major impediments to communication. For effective patient–provider communication, attention is needed to language, communication style, knowledge and use of medical terminology and cross-cultural differences in the concept of time. Aboriginal marginalization within mainstream society and Aboriginal people’s distrust of the health system were also key issues impacting on communication. Potential solutions to effective Aboriginal patient-provider communication included recruiting more Aboriginal staff

  20. Identifying potential heirs properties in the Southeastern United States: a new GIS methodology utilizing mass appraisal data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott Pippin; Shana Jones; Cassandra. Johnson Gaither

    2017-01-01

    This report presents a methodology for identifying land parcels that have an increased probability of being heirs property. Heirs property is inherited land passed to successive generations intestate, without clear title, typically to family members. This land ownership type is widespread among rural, African-American populations and is also thought to be pervasive in...

  1. Point to a Referent, and Say, "What Is This?" Gesture as a Potential Cue to Identify Referents in a Discourse

    Science.gov (United States)

    So, Wing Chee; Lim, Jia Yi

    2012-01-01

    This study explored whether caregivers' gestures followed the discourse-pragmatic principle of information status of referents (given vs. new) and how their children responded to those gestures when identifying referents. Ten Chinese-speaking and eight English-speaking caregivers were videotaped while interacting spontaneously with their children.…

  2. Virtual Reality and Its Potential Use in Special Education. Identifying Emerging Issues and Trends in Technology for Special Education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodward, John

    As part of a 3-year study to identify emerging issues and trends in technology for special education, this paper addresses the possible contributions of virtual reality technology to educational services for students with disabilities. An example of the use of virtual reality in medical imaging introduces the paper and leads to a brief review of…

  3. Identifying potential types of guidance for supporting student inquiry when using virtual and remote labs in science: a literature review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zacharia, Zacharias C.; Manoli, Constantinos; Xenofontos, Nikoletta; de Jong, Anthonius J.M.; Pedaste, Margus; van Riesen, Siswa; Kamp, E.T.; Kamp, Ellen T.; Mäeots, Mario; Siiman, Leo; Tsourlidaki, Eleftheria

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this review is to identify specific types of guidance for supporting student use of online labs, that is, virtual and remote labs, in an inquiry context. To do so, we reviewed the literature on providing guidance within computer supported inquiry learning (CoSIL) environments in science

  4. Identifying deliberate attempts to fake memory impairment through the combined use of reaction time and event-related potential measures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hooff, Johanna C.; Sargeant, Elizabeth; Foster, Jonathan K.; Schmand, Ben A.

    2009-01-01

    The central aim of this study was to evaluate the value of reaction time (RT) measures and event-related potentials (ERPs) for the assessment of simulated memory impairment. In two identical experiments (N = 24), healthy volunteers carried out an adapted version of the Amsterdam Short-Term Memory

  5. Novel mitochondria-targeted heat-soluble proteins identified in the anhydrobiotic Tardigrade improve osmotic tolerance of human cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sae Tanaka

    Full Text Available Tardigrades are able to tolerate almost complete dehydration through transition to a metabolically inactive state, called "anhydrobiosis". Late Embryogenesis Abundant (LEA proteins are heat-soluble proteins involved in the desiccation tolerance of many anhydrobiotic organisms. Tardigrades, Ramazzottius varieornatus, however, express predominantly tardigrade-unique heat-soluble proteins: CAHS (Cytoplasmic Abundant Heat Soluble and SAHS (Secretory Abundant Heat Soluble proteins, which are secreted or localized in most intracellular compartments, except the mitochondria. Although mitochondrial integrity is crucial to ensure cellular survival, protective molecules for mitochondria have remained elusive. Here, we identified two novel mitochondrial heat-soluble proteins, RvLEAM and MAHS (Mitochondrial Abundant Heat Soluble, as potent mitochondrial protectants from Ramazzottius varieornatus. RvLEAM is a group3 LEA protein and immunohistochemistry confirmed its mitochondrial localization in tardigrade cells. MAHS-green fluorescent protein fusion protein localized in human mitochondria and was heat-soluble in vitro, though no sequence similarity with other known proteins was found, and one region was conserved among tardigrades. Furthermore, we demonstrated that RvLEAM protein as well as MAHS protein improved the hyperosmotic tolerance of human cells. The findings of the present study revealed that tardigrade mitochondria contain at least two types of heat-soluble proteins that might have protective roles in water-deficient environments.

  6. A quantitative analysis of statistical power identifies obesity end points for improved in vivo preclinical study design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selimkhanov, J; Thompson, W C; Guo, J; Hall, K D; Musante, C J

    2017-08-01

    The design of well-powered in vivo preclinical studies is a key element in building the knowledge of disease physiology for the purpose of identifying and effectively testing potential antiobesity drug targets. However, as a result of the complexity of the obese phenotype, there is limited understanding of the variability within and between study animals of macroscopic end points such as food intake and body composition. This, combined with limitations inherent in the measurement of certain end points, presents challenges to study design that can have significant consequences for an antiobesity program. Here, we analyze a large, longitudinal study of mouse food intake and body composition during diet perturbation to quantify the variability and interaction of the key metabolic end points. To demonstrate how conclusions can change as a function of study size, we show that a simulated preclinical study properly powered for one end point may lead to false conclusions based on secondary end points. We then propose the guidelines for end point selection and study size estimation under different conditions to facilitate proper power calculation for a more successful in vivo study design.

  7. A comprehensive framework to quantify energy savings potential from improved operations of commercial building stocks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Azar, Elie; Menassa, Carol C.

    2014-01-01

    While studies highlight the significant impact of actions performed by occupants and facility managers on building energy performance, current policies ignore the importance of human actions and the potential energy savings from a more efficient operation of building systems. This is mainly attributed to the lack of methods that evaluate non-technological drivers of energy use for large stocks of commercial buildings to support policy making efforts. Therefore, this study proposes a scientific approach to quantifying the energy savings potential due to improved operations of any stock of commercial buildings. The proposed framework combines energy modeling techniques, studies on human actions in buildings, and surveying and sampling methods. The contributions of this study to energy policy are significant as they reinforce the role of human actions in energy conservation, and support efforts to integrate operation-focused solutions in energy conservation policy frameworks. The framework's capabilities are illustrated in a case study performed on the stock of office buildings in the United States (US). Results indicate a potential 21 percent reduction in the current energy use levels of these buildings through realistic changes in current building operation patterns. - Highlights: • Human actions highly influence energy performance of commercial building stocks. • It is challenging to quantify operation-related energy savings potential. • The proposed framework quantifies potential energy savings from improved operations. • The framework can be applied on any stock of commercial buildings. • Applications include support for operation-focused solutions in energy policies

  8. Cyclic peptide inhibitors of lysine-specific demethylase 1 with improved potency identified by alanine scanning mutagenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumarasinghe, Isuru R; Woster, Patrick M

    2018-03-25

    Lysine-specific demethylase 1 (LSD1) is a chromatin-remodeling enzyme that plays an important role in cancer. Over-expression of LSD1 decreases methylation at histone 3 lysine 4, and aberrantly silences tumor suppressor genes. Inhibitors of LSD1 have been designed as chemical probes and potential antitumor agents. We recently reported the cyclic peptide 9, which potently and reversibly inhibits LSD1 (IC 50 2.1 μM; K i 385 nM). Systematic alanine mutagenesis of 9 revealed residues that are critical for LSD1 inhibition, and these mutated peptides were evaluated as LSD1 inhibitors. Alanine substitution at positions 2, 3, 4, 6 and 11-17 preserved inhibition, while substitution of alanine at positions 8 and 9 resulted in complete loss of activity. Cyclic mutant peptides 11 and 16 produced the greatest LSD1 inhibition, and 11, 16, 27 and 28 increased global H3K4me2 in K562 cells. In addition, 16, 27 and 28 promoted significant increases in H3K4me2 levels at the promoter sites of the genes IGFBP2 and FEZ1. Data from these LSD1 inhibitors will aid in the design of peptidomimetics with improved stability and pharmacokinetics. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  9. Scaling of the quark-antiquark potential and improved actions in SU(2) lattice gauge theory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Montvay, I.; Gutbrod, F.

    1983-11-01

    The scaling behaviour of the quark-antiquark potential is investigated by a high statistics Monte Carlo calculation in SU(2) lattice gauge theory. Besides the standard one-plaquette action we also use Symanzik's tree-level improved action and Wilson's block-spin improved action. No significant differences between Symanzik's action and the standard action have been observed. For small β Wilson's action scales differently. The string tension value chi extracted from the data corresponds to Λsub(latt) = (0.018 +- 0.001) √chi for the one-plaquette action. (orig.)

  10. Split-illumination electron holography for improved evaluation of electrostatic potential associated with electrophotography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tanigaki, Toshiaki, E-mail: tanigaki-toshiaki@riken.jp; Aizawa, Shinji; Soon Park, Hyun [Center for Emergent Matter Science (CEMS), RIKEN, Hirosawa 2-1, Wako, Saitama 351-0198 (Japan); Sato, Kuniaki; Akase, Zentaro [Institute of Multidisciplinary Research for Advanced Materials, Tohoku University, Katahira 2-1-1, Sendai 980-8577 (Japan); Matsuda, Tsuyoshi [Japan Science and Technology Agency, Kawaguchi, Saitama 332-0012 (Japan); Murakami, Yasukazu; Shindo, Daisuke [Center for Emergent Matter Science (CEMS), RIKEN, Hirosawa 2-1, Wako, Saitama 351-0198 (Japan); Institute of Multidisciplinary Research for Advanced Materials, Tohoku University, Katahira 2-1-1, Sendai 980-8577 (Japan); Kawase, Hiromitsu [Product Environment Technology Development Department, Environment and Energy Technology Development Center R and D Group, RICOH Co., Ltd., Shinei-cho, Tsuzuki-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa 224-0035 (Japan)

    2014-03-31

    Precise evaluation of the electrostatic potential distributions of and around samples with multiple charges using electron holography has long been a problem due to unknown perturbation of the reference wave. Here, we report the first practical application of split-illumination electron holography (SIEH) to tackle this problem. This method enables the use of a non-perturbed reference wave distant from the sample. SIEH revealed the electrostatic potential distributions at interfaces of the charged particles used for development in electrophotography and should lead to dramatic improvements in electrophotography.

  11. Split-illumination electron holography for improved evaluation of electrostatic potential associated with electrophotography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tanigaki, Toshiaki; Aizawa, Shinji; Soon Park, Hyun; Sato, Kuniaki; Akase, Zentaro; Matsuda, Tsuyoshi; Murakami, Yasukazu; Shindo, Daisuke; Kawase, Hiromitsu

    2014-01-01

    Precise evaluation of the electrostatic potential distributions of and around samples with multiple charges using electron holography has long been a problem due to unknown perturbation of the reference wave. Here, we report the first practical application of split-illumination electron holography (SIEH) to tackle this problem. This method enables the use of a non-perturbed reference wave distant from the sample. SIEH revealed the electrostatic potential distributions at interfaces of the charged particles used for development in electrophotography and should lead to dramatic improvements in electrophotography

  12. Global analysis of WRKY transcription factor superfamily in Setaria identifies potential candidates involved in abiotic stress signaling

    OpenAIRE

    Muthamilarasan, Mehanathan; Bonthala, Venkata S.; Khandelwal, Rohit; Jaishankar, Jananee; Shweta, Shweta; Nawaz, Kashif; Prasad, Manoj

    2015-01-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) are major players in stress signalling and constitute an integral part of signalling networks. Among the major TFs, WRKY proteins play pivotal roles in regulation of transcriptional reprogramming associated with stress responses. In view of this, genome- and transcriptome-wide identification of WRKY TF family was performed in the C4 model plants, Setaria italica (SiWRKY) and S. viridis (SvWRKY), respectively. The study identified 105 SiWRKY and 44 SvWRKY proteins t...

  13. Genome-wide association study to identify potential genetic modifiers in a canine model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brinkmeyer-Langford, Candice; Balog-Alvarez, Cynthia; Cai, James J; Davis, Brian W; Kornegay, Joe N

    2016-08-22

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) causes progressive muscle degeneration, cardiomyopathy and respiratory failure in approximately 1/5,000 boys. Golden Retriever muscular dystrophy (GRMD) resembles DMD both clinically and pathologically. Like DMD, GRMD exhibits remarkable phenotypic variation among affected dogs, suggesting the influence of modifiers. Understanding the role(s) of genetic modifiers of GRMD may identify genes and pathways that also modify phenotypes in DMD and reveal novel therapies. Therefore, our objective in this study was to identify genetic modifiers that affect discrete GRMD phenotypes. We performed a linear mixed-model (LMM) analysis using 16 variably-affected dogs from our GRMD colony (8 dystrophic, 8 non-dystrophic). All of these dogs were either full or half-siblings, and phenotyped for 19 objective, quantitative biomarkers at ages 6 and 12 months. Each biomarker was individually assessed. Gene expression profiles of 59 possible candidate genes were generated for two muscle types: the cranial tibialis and medial head of the gastrocnemius. SNPs significantly associated with GRMD biomarkers were identified on multiple chromosomes (including the X chromosome). Gene expression levels for candidate genes located near these SNPs correlated with biomarker values, suggesting possible roles as GRMD modifiers. The results of this study enhance our understanding of GRMD pathology and represent a first step toward the characterization of GRMD modifiers that may be relevant to DMD pathology. Such modifiers are likely to be useful for DMD treatment development based on their relationships to GRMD phenotypes.

  14. Integrative Analysis of Genetic, Genomic, and Phenotypic Data for Ethanol Behaviors: A Network-Based Pipeline for Identifying Mechanisms and Potential Drug Targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bogenpohl, James W; Mignogna, Kristin M; Smith, Maren L; Miles, Michael F

    2017-01-01

    Complex behavioral traits, such as alcohol abuse, are caused by an interplay of genetic and environmental factors, producing deleterious functional adaptations in the central nervous system. The long-term behavioral consequences of such changes are of substantial cost to both the individual and society. Substantial progress has been made in the last two decades in understanding elements of brain mechanisms underlying responses to ethanol in animal models and risk factors for alcohol use disorder (AUD) in humans. However, treatments for AUD remain largely ineffective and few medications for this disease state have been licensed. Genome-wide genetic polymorphism analysis (GWAS) in humans, behavioral genetic studies in animal models and brain gene expression studies produced by microarrays or RNA-seq have the potential to produce nonbiased and novel insight into the underlying neurobiology of AUD. However, the complexity of such information, both statistical and informational, has slowed progress toward identifying new targets for intervention in AUD. This chapter describes one approach for integrating behavioral, genetic, and genomic information across animal model and human studies. The goal of this approach is to identify networks of genes functioning in the brain that are most relevant to the underlying mechanisms of a complex disease such as AUD. We illustrate an example of how genomic studies in animal models can be used to produce robust gene networks that have functional implications, and to integrate such animal model genomic data with human genetic studies such as GWAS for AUD. We describe several useful analysis tools for such studies: ComBAT, WGCNA, and EW_dmGWAS. The end result of this analysis is a ranking of gene networks and identification of their cognate hub genes, which might provide eventual targets for future therapeutic development. Furthermore, this combined approach may also improve our understanding of basic mechanisms underlying gene x

  15. An improved potential drop method for measuring and monitoring defects in metallic structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oppermann, W.; Keller, H.P.

    1993-01-01

    In the developed form described the direct current potential drop method is a reliable and relatively accurate procedure for the measuring and surveillance of surface cracks in metallic materials. There are also significant possibilities in practice of surveying cracks on the inaccessible side of the structure. The basis for the improvement in accuracy, in particular for short cracks, is firstly an improved measuring technique and secondly calibration curves determined using an electrolytic tank. Practical experience gained in conventional plants is to date positive. The opportunity exists of benefitting from the advantages that would be brought about by an increased use of the potential drop method in plant surveillance. In nuclear plants specifically this would achieve a reduction in the testing personnel's exposure to radiation. (orig.)

  16. Potential for air quality improvement in the Tokyo metropolitan area from use of hydrogen fuel

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kruger, Paul; Murdock, Mork

    1998-01-01

    A revised estimation has been made of the local air quality improvement that can be achieved in Tokyo as a byproduct of a word-wide hydrogen energy economy based on global reduction of CO2 emission from fossil fuels. The study for the WE-NET Project in Japan examined the potential for reduction in nitrogen oxide emission with hydrogen fuel in the Tokyo metropolitan area where sufficient data exist on trends in population, vehicle registrations, traffic activity, and exhaust emissions. A dynamic model was developed to extrapolate the trends in these data to estimate future NOx emission rates in comparison to regulatory scenarios based on policy and technical decisions of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government for improvement of air quality in the metropolitan area. The results of the model show significant potential for reduction of NOx emission by the year 2020 with a concomitant reduction in mean roadside NOx concentration. (author)

  17. Review of comparative LCAs of food waste management systems – Current status and potential improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bernstad, A.; Cour Jansen, J. la

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► GHG-emissions from different treatment alternatives vary largely in 25 reviewed comparative LCAs of bio-waste management. ► System-boundary settings often vary largely in reviewed studies. ► Existing LCA guidelines give varying recommendations in relation to several key issues. - Abstract: Twenty-five comparative cycle assessments (LCAs) addressing food waste treatment were reviewed, including the treatment alternatives landfill, thermal treatment, compost (small and large scale) and anaerobic digestion. The global warming potential related to these treatment alternatives varies largely amongst the studies. Large differences in relation to setting of system boundaries, methodological choices and variations in used input data were seen between the studies. Also, a number of internal contradictions were identified, many times resulting in biased comparisons between alternatives. Thus, noticed differences in global warming potential are not found to be a result of actual differences in the environmental impacts from studied systems, but rather to differences in the performance of the study. A number of key issues with high impact on the overall global warming potential from different treatment alternatives for food waste were identified through the use of one-way sensitivity analyses in relation to a previously performed LCA of food waste management. Assumptions related to characteristics in treated waste, losses and emissions of carbon, nutrients and other compounds during the collection, storage and pretreatment, potential energy recovery through combustion, emissions from composting, emissions from storage and land use of bio-fertilizers and chemical fertilizers and eco-profiles of substituted goods were all identified as highly relevant for the outcomes of this type of comparisons. As the use of LCA in this area is likely to increase in coming years, it is highly relevant to establish more detailed guidelines within this field in order to

  18. Review of comparative LCAs of food waste management systems - Current status and potential improvements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bernstad, A., E-mail: anna.bernstad@chemeng.lth.se [Water and Environmental Engineering at the Department of Chemical Engineering, Lund University, Chemical Centre, 221 00 Lund (Sweden); Cour Jansen, J. la [Water and Environmental Engineering at the Department of Chemical Engineering, Lund University, Chemical Centre, 221 00 Lund (Sweden)

    2012-12-15

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer GHG-emissions from different treatment alternatives vary largely in 25 reviewed comparative LCAs of bio-waste management. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer System-boundary settings often vary largely in reviewed studies. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Existing LCA guidelines give varying recommendations in relation to several key issues. - Abstract: Twenty-five comparative cycle assessments (LCAs) addressing food waste treatment were reviewed, including the treatment alternatives landfill, thermal treatment, compost (small and large scale) and anaerobic digestion. The global warming potential related to these treatment alternatives varies largely amongst the studies. Large differences in relation to setting of system boundaries, methodological choices and variations in used input data were seen between the studies. Also, a number of internal contradictions were identified, many times resulting in biased comparisons between alternatives. Thus, noticed differences in global warming potential are not found to be a result of actual differences in the environmental impacts from studied systems, but rather to differences in the performance of the study. A number of key issues with high impact on the overall global warming potential from different treatment alternatives for food waste were identified through the use of one-way sensitivity analyses in relation to a previously performed LCA of food waste management. Assumptions related to characteristics in treated waste, losses and emissions of carbon, nutrients and other compounds during the collection, storage and pretreatment, potential energy recovery through combustion, emissions from composting, emissions from storage and land use of bio-fertilizers and chemical fertilizers and eco-profiles of substituted goods were all identified as highly relevant for the outcomes of this type of comparisons. As the use of LCA in this area is likely to increase in coming years, it is highly

  19. A potential spatial working memory training task to improve both episodic memory and fluid intelligence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah R Rudebeck

    on a single working memory task can potentially improve aspects of both episodic memory and fluid intelligence, and that an extensive training regime with multiple tasks may not be necessary.

  20. An improved potential drop method for measuring and monitoring defects in structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oppermann, W.; Keller, H.P.

    1991-01-01

    In its advanced form, the direct-current potential probe measuring technique is a reliable and relatively exact procedure for measuring and monitoring surface defects. In addition, there is the possibility - important for practical purposes - of measuring cracks at the inaccessible side of a component part. The improved accuracy, in particular with regard to short defects, is based on advanced measuring techniques and calibration curves determined at the electrolytical tank. (orig./DG) [de

  1. Energy analysis and improvement potential of finned double-pass solar collector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fudholi, Ahmad; Sopian, Kamaruzzaman; Othman, Mohd Yusof; Ruslan, Mohd Hafidz; Bakhtyar, B.

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • The developed steady state model predicting the thermal performance of double-pass solar collectors is presented. • The main objective of this paper is to analyze the energy and exergy of finned double-pass solar collector. • A new mathematical model, solution procedure, and test results are presented. • The thermal performances and improvement potential of the double-pass solar collectors are discussed. - Abstract: Steady state energy balance equations for the finned double-pass solar collector have been developed. These equations were solved using the matrix inversion method. The predicted results were in agreement with the results obtained from the experiments. The predictions and experiments were observed at the mass flow rate ranging between 0.03 kg/s and 0.1 kg/s, and solar radiation ranging between 400 W/m 2 and 800 W/m 2 . The effects of mass flow rates and solar radiation levels on energy efficiency, exergy efficiency and the improvement potential have been observed. The optimum energy efficiency is approximately 77%, which was observed at the mass flow rate of 0.09 kg/s. The optical efficiency of the finned double-pass solar collector is approximately 70–80%. The exergy efficiency is approximately 15–28% and improvement potential of 740–1070 W for a solar radiation of 425–790 W/m 2

  2. The Fuel Efficiency of Maritime Transport. Potential for improvement and analysis of barriers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Faber, J.; Nelissen, D.; Smit, M. [CE Delft, Delft (Netherlands); Behrends, B. [Marena Ltd., s.l. (United Kingdom); Lee, D.S. [Manchester Metropolitan University, Machester (United Kingdom)

    2012-02-15

    There is significant potential to improve the fuel efficiency of ships and thus contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from maritime transport. It has long been recognised that this potential is not being fully exploited, owing to the existence of non-market barriers. This report analyses the barriers to implementing fuel efficiency improvements, and concludes that the most important of these are the split incentive between ship owners and operators, a lack of trusted data on new technologies, and transaction costs associated with evaluating measures. As a result, in practice about a quarter of the cost-effective abatement potential is unavailable. There are several ways to overcome these barriers. The split incentive can - to some extent - be overcome by providing more detailed information on the fuel efficiency of vessels, making due allowance for operational profiles. This would allow fuel consumption to be more accurately projected and a larger share of efficiency benefits to accrue to ship owners, thus increasing the return on investment in fuel-saving technologies. This would also require changes to standard charter parties. The credibility of information on new technologies can be improved through intensive collaboration between suppliers of new technologies and shipping companies. In order to overcome risk, government subsidies could provide an incentive. This could have the additional benefit that governments could require publication of results.

  3. Machine Learning Methods Improve Prognostication, Identify Clinically Distinct Phenotypes, and Detect Heterogeneity in Response to Therapy in a Large Cohort of Heart Failure Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Tariq; Lund, Lars H; Rao, Pooja; Ghosh, Rohit; Warier, Prashant; Vaccaro, Benjamin; Dahlström, Ulf; O'Connor, Christopher M; Felker, G Michael; Desai, Nihar R

    2018-04-12

    Whereas heart failure (HF) is a complex clinical syndrome, conventional approaches to its management have treated it as a singular disease, leading to inadequate patient care and inefficient clinical trials. We hypothesized that applying advanced analytics to a large cohort of HF patients would improve prognostication of outcomes, identify distinct patient phenotypes, and detect heterogeneity in treatment response. The Swedish Heart Failure Registry is a nationwide registry collecting detailed demographic, clinical, laboratory, and medication data and linked to databases with outcome information. We applied random forest modeling to identify predictors of 1-year survival. Cluster analysis was performed and validated using serial bootstrapping. Association between clusters and survival was assessed with Cox proportional hazards modeling and interaction testing was performed to assess for heterogeneity in response to HF pharmacotherapy across propensity-matched clusters. Our study included 44 886 HF patients enrolled in the Swedish Heart Failure Registry between 2000 and 2012. Random forest modeling demonstrated excellent calibration and discrimination for survival (C-statistic=0.83) whereas left ventricular ejection fraction did not (C-statistic=0.52): there were no meaningful differences per strata of left ventricular ejection fraction (1-year survival: 80%, 81%, 83%, and 84%). Cluster analysis using the 8 highest predictive variables identified 4 clinically relevant subgroups of HF with marked differences in 1-year survival. There were significant interactions between propensity-matched clusters (across age, sex, and left ventricular ejection fraction and the following medications: diuretics, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, β-blockers, and nitrates, P <0.001, all). Machine learning algorithms accurately predicted outcomes in a large data set of HF patients. Cluster analysis identified 4 distinct phenotypes that differed significantly in outcomes and in

  4. Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation: Facility Utilizes Energy Assessments to Identify $930,000 in Potential Annual Savings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2004-07-01

    Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation (KUCC) used targeted energy assessments in the smelter and refinery at its Bingham Canyon Mine, near Salt Lake City, Utah. The assessment focused mainly on the energy-intensive processes of copper smelting and refining. By implementing the projects identified, KUCC could realize annual cost savings of $930,000 and annual energy savings of 452,000 MMBtu. The projects would also reduce maintenance, repair costs, waste, and environmental emissions. One project would use methane gas from an adjacent municipal dump to replace natural gas currently used to heat the refinery electrolyte.

  5. Proteomic profiling of mammary carcinomas identifies C7orf24, a gamma-glutamyl cyclotransferase, as a potential cancer biomarker

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gromov, Pavel; Gromova, Irina; Friis, Esbern

    2010-01-01

    Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in women today and is the most common cancer (excluding skin cancers) among women in the Western world. Although cancers detected by screening mammography are significantly smaller than nonscreening ones, noninvasive biomarkers for detection......, and a novel protein, C7orf24, was identified as being upregulated in cancer cells. Protein expression levels of C7orf24 were evaluated by immunohistochemical assays to qualify deregulation of this protein. Analysis of C7orf24 expression showed up-regulation in 36.4 and 23.4% of cases present in the discovery...

  6. An in silico high-throughput screen identifies potential selective inhibitors for the non-receptor tyrosine kinase Pyk2

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meirson T

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Tomer Meirson, Abraham O Samson, Hava Gil-Henn Faculty of Medicine in the Galilee, Bar-Ilan University, Safed, Israel Abstract: The non-receptor tyrosine kinase proline-rich tyrosine kinase 2 (Pyk2 is a critical mediator of signaling from cell surface growth factor and adhesion receptors to cell migration, proliferation, and survival. Emerging evidence indicates that signaling by Pyk2 regulates hematopoietic cell response, bone density, neuronal degeneration, angiogenesis, and cancer. These physiological and pathological roles of Pyk2 warrant it as a valuable therapeutic target for invasive cancers, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s disease, and inflammatory cellular response. Despite its potential as a therapeutic target, no potent and selective inhibitor of Pyk2 is available at present. As a first step toward discovering specific potential inhibitors of Pyk2, we used an in silico high-throughput screening approach. A virtual library of six million lead-like compounds was docked against four different high-resolution Pyk2 kinase domain crystal structures and further selected for predicted potency and ligand efficiency. Ligand selectivity for Pyk2 over focal adhesion kinase (FAK was evaluated by comparative docking of ligands and measurement of binding free energy so as to obtain 40 potential candidates. Finally, the structural flexibility of a subset of the docking complexes was evaluated by molecular dynamics simulation, followed by intermolecular interaction analysis. These compounds may be considered as promising leads for further development of highly selective Pyk2 inhibitors. Keywords: virtual screen, efficiency metrics, MM-GBSA, molecular dynamics

  7. Proteomic profiling of mammary carcinomas identifies C7orf24, a gamma-glutamyl cyclotransferase, as a potential cancer biomarker

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gromov, Pavel; Gromova, Irina; Friis, Esbern

    2010-01-01

    Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in women today and is the most common cancer (excluding skin cancers) among women in the Western world. Although cancers detected by screening mammography are significantly smaller than nonscreening ones, noninvasive biomarkers for detection...... in different types of cancer suggests deregulation of C7orf24 to be a general event in epithelial carcinogenesis, indicating that this protein may play an important role in cancer cell biology and thus constitute a novel therapeutic target. Furthermore, as C7orf24 is externalized to the tissue extracellular...... fluid and can be detected in serum, this protein also represents a potential serological marker....

  8. Health-Improving Potential of Dancing Exercises in Physical Education of Students of Higher Educational Institutions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Т. М. Кравчук

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Research objective: to determine the health-improving potential of dancing exercises used in physical education of female students of higher educational institutions.  Research methods: study and analysis of pedagogical, scientific and methodological literature on the subject matter of the research; observations, questionnaires, functional tests; statistical methods of data reduction. Conclusions. As part of the study, the use of dancing exercises in the physical education of female students of higher educational institutions proved contributing to a significant increase in the level of their physical health in general and improvement of some of its indicators, including strength and life indices, heart rate recovery time after 20 squats. Dancing exercises also boost spirits, improve health and activity of the female students, which the study proved statistically.

  9. Potential Uses of Wild Germplasms of Grain Legumes for Crop Improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz, Nacira; Liu, Ailin; Kan, Leo; Li, Man-Wah; Lam, Hon-Ming

    2017-01-01

    Challenged by population increase, climatic change, and soil deterioration, crop improvement is always a priority in securing food supplies. Although the production of grain legumes is in general lower than that of cereals, the nutritional value of grain legumes make them important components of food security. Nevertheless, limited by severe genetic bottlenecks during domestication and human selection, grain legumes, like other crops, have suffered from a loss of genetic diversity which is essential for providing genetic materials for crop improvement programs. Illustrated by whole-genome-sequencing, wild relatives of crops adapted to various environments were shown to maintain high genetic diversity. In this review, we focused on nine important grain legumes (soybean, peanut, pea, chickpea, common bean, lentil, cowpea, lupin, and pigeonpea) to discuss the potential uses of their wild relatives as genetic resources for crop breeding and improvement, and summarized the various genetic/genomic approaches adopted for these purposes. PMID:28165413

  10. THE POTENTIAL IMPACTS OF THE PORT OF SALVADOR IMPROVEMENTS ON THE BRAZILIAN COTTON INDUSTRY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Costa

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available A spatial price equilibrium model of the international cotton sector was used to analyze the impacts of the Port of Salvador improvements on the Brazilian cotton industry and world cotton trade. The port of Salvador is undergoing relevant improvements in its facilities and physical structure. As a result of these improvements, the port of Salvador is expected to become more competitive and attract ocean shipping companies which are willing to export products directly to Asian importing markets. Scenarios with different reduction in export cost for the port of Salvador were examined. For all scenarios, the new direct ocean shipping lines were found to be important for the cotton exporters in Brazil, especially for the producers in the state of Bahia. In addition, results suggested that the state of Bahia would have the potential of becoming the largest cotton exporting state in Brazil.

  11. Potential Uses of Wild Germplasms of Grain Legumes for Crop Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nacira Muñoz

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Challenged by population increase, climatic change, and soil deterioration, crop improvement is always a priority in securing food supplies. Although the production of grain legumes is in general lower than that of cereals, the nutritional value of grain legumes make them important components of food security. Nevertheless, limited by severe genetic bottlenecks during domestication and human selection, grain legumes, like other crops, have suffered from a loss of genetic diversity which is essential for providing genetic materials for crop improvement programs. Illustrated by whole-genome-sequencing, wild relatives of crops adapted to various environments were shown to maintain high genetic diversity. In this review, we focused on nine important grain legumes (soybean, peanut, pea, chickpea, common bean, lentil, cowpea, lupin, and pigeonpea to discuss the potential uses of their wild relatives as genetic resources for crop breeding and improvement, and summarized the various genetic/genomic approaches adopted for these purposes.

  12. Improving the Calculation of The Potential Between Spherical and Deformed Nuclei

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ismail, M.; Ramadan, Kh.A.

    2000-01-01

    The Heavy Ion (HI) interaction potential between spherical and deformed nuclei is improved by calculating its exchange part using finite range nucleon-nucleon (NN) force. We considered U 238 as a target nucleus and seven projectile nuclei to show the dependence of the HI potential on both the energy and orientation of the deformed target nucleus. The effect of finite range NN force has been found to produce significant changes in the HI potential. The variation of the barrier height V B , its thickness and its position R B due to the use of finite range NN force are significant. Such variation enhance the fusion cross-section at energy values just below the Coulomb barrier by a factor increasing with the mass number of projectile nucleus. (author)

  13. Improved effective potential in curved spacetime and quantum matter--higher derivative gravity theory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elizalde, E.; Odintsov, S.D.; Romeo, A.

    1995-01-01

    We develop a general formalism to study the renormalization-group- (RG-)improved effective potential for renormalizable gauge theories, including matter-R 2 -gravity, in curved spacetime. The result is given up to quadratic terms in curvature, and one-loop effective potentials may be easily obtained from it. As an example, we consider scalar QED, where dimensional transmutation in curved space and the phase structure of the potential (in particular, curvature-induced phase transitions) are discussed. For scalar QED with higher-derivative quantum gravity (QG), we examine the influence of QG on dimensional transmutation and calculate QG corrections to the scalar-to-vector mass ratio. The phase structure of the RG-improved effective potential is also studied in this case, and the values of the induced Newton and cosmological coupling constants at the critical point are estimated. The stability of the running scalar coupling in the Yukawa theory with conformally invariant higher-derivative QG, and in the standard model with the same addition, is numerically analyzed. We show that, in these models, QG tends to make the scalar sector less unstable

  14. Study of Potential Extension For Improving Knowledge Society in Ngadas Village about Medicinal plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    hajmia guswika

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Society knowledge in Ngadas village about medicinal plants began to fade, as people do not know the plants that can be consume as a drug around them. However, the treatment by plant utilizing is a traditional medicine that has become a cultural heritage that should be conserved and has been recommended by the WHO as the effort back to nature for the maintenance of public health, prevention and treatment of disease. Wild plant that has potential as a drug in the village Ngadas big enough examples adas, ajeran, akasia duri, anting-anting, alang-alang, patikan kebo, pegagan, semanggi gunung, kersen, krisan, kecubung gunung, tempuyung, etc. The purpose of writing this article is to examine the potential of extension as a efforts on improving knowledge of society. The method used is to review literature of some journal that examines the educational efforts to improve public knowledge. Based on data obtained from reviewing the literature, extension activities proved potentially in increasing knowledge of society. Thus it is needed to do extension in an effort to provide information on the potential of medicinal plants in the Ngadas villages.

  15. Kinome expression profiling of human neuroblastoma tumors identifies potential drug targets for ultra high-risk patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russo, Roberta; Cimmino, Flora; Pezone, Lucia; Manna, Francesco; Avitabile, Marianna; Langella, Concetta; Koster, Jan; Casale, Fiorina; Raia, Maddalena; Viola, Giampietro; Fischer, Matthias; Iolascon, Achille; Capasso, Mario

    2017-10-01

    Neuroblastoma (NBL) accounts for >7% of malignancies in patients younger than 15 years. Low- and intermediate-risk patients exhibit excellent or good prognosis after treatment, whereas for high-risk (HR) patients, the estimated 5-year survival rates is still <40%. The ability to stratify HR patients that will not respond to standard treatment strategies is critical for informed treatment decisions. In this study, we have generated a specific kinome gene signature, named Kinome-27, which is able to identify a subset of HR-NBL tumors, named ultra-HR NBL, with highly aggressive clinical behavior that not adequately respond to standard treatments. We have demonstrated that NBL cell lines expressing the same kinome signature of ultra-HR tumors (ultra-HR-like cell lines) may be selectively targeted by the use of two drugs [suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA) and Radicicol], and that the synergic combination of these drugs is able to block the ultra-HR-like cells in G2/M phase of cell cycle. The use of our signature in clinical practice will allow identifying patients with negative outcome, which would benefit from new and more personalized treatments. Preclinical in vivo studies are needed to consolidate the SAHA and Radicicol treatment in ultra-HR NBL patients. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. cDNA Library Screening Identifies Protein Interactors Potentially Involved in Non-telomeric Roles of Arabidopsis Telomerase

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ladislav eDokládal

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Telomerase-reverse transcriptase (TERT plays an essential catalytic role in maintaining telomeres. However, in animal systems telomerase plays additional non-telomeric functional roles. We previously screened an Arabidopsis cDNA library for proteins that interact with the C-terminal extension (CTE TERT domain and identified a nuclear-localized protein that contains a RNA recognition motif (RRM. This RRM-protein forms homodimers in both plants and yeast. Mutation of the gene encoding the RRM-protein had no detectable effect on plant growth and development, nor did it affect telomerase activity or telomere length in vivo, suggesting a non-telomeric role for TERT/RRM-protein complexes. The gene encoding the RRM-protein is highly expressed in leaf and reproductive tissues. We further screened an Arabidopsis cDNA library for proteins that interact with the RRM-protein and identified five interactors. These proteins are involved in numerous non-telomere-associated cellular activities. In plants, the RRM-protein, both alone and in a complex with its interactors, localizes to nuclear speckles. Transcriptional analyses in wild-type and rrm mutant plants, as well as transcriptional co-analyses, suggest that TERT, the RRM-protein, and the RRM-protein interactors may play important roles in non-telomeric cellular functions.

  17. Potential use of multispectral imaging technology to identify moisture content and water-holding capacity in cooked pork sausages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Fei; Zhang, Bin; Wang, Wu; Li, Peijun; Niu, Xiangli; Chen, Conggui; Zheng, Lei

    2018-03-01

    The traditional detection methods for moisture content (MC) and water-holding capacity (WHC) in cooked pork sausages (CPS) are destructive, time consuming, require skilled personnel and are not suitable for online industry applications. The goal of this work was to explore the potential of multispectral imaging (MSI) in combination with multivariate analysis for the identification of MC and WHC in CPS. Spectra and textures of 156 CPS treated by six salt concentrations (0-2.5%) were analyzed using different calibration models to find the most optimal results of predicting MC and WHC in CPS. By using the fused data of spectra and textures, partial least squares regression models performed well for determining the MC and WHC, with a correlation coefficient (r) of 0.949 and 0.832, respectively. Additionally, their spatial distribution in CPS could be visualized via applying prediction equations to transfer each pixel in the image. Results of satisfactory detection and visualization of the MC and WHC showed that MSI has the potential to serve as a rapid and non-destructive method for use in sausage industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.

  18. Towards Quantitative Optical Cross Sections in Entomological Laser Radar - Potential of Temporal and Spherical Parameterizations for Identifying Atmospheric Fauna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mikkel Brydegaard

    Full Text Available In recent years, the field of remote sensing of birds and insects in the atmosphere (the aerial fauna has advanced considerably, and modern electro-optic methods now allow the assessment of the abundance and fluxes of pests and beneficials on a landscape scale. These techniques have the potential to significantly increase our understanding of, and ability to quantify and manage, the ecological environment. This paper presents a concept whereby laser radar observations of atmospheric fauna can be parameterized and table values for absolute cross sections can be catalogued to allow for the study of focal species such as disease vectors and pests. Wing-beat oscillations are parameterized with a discrete set of harmonics and the spherical scatter function is parameterized by a reduced set of symmetrical spherical harmonics. A first order spherical model for insect scatter is presented and supported experimentally, showing angular dependence of wing beat harmonic content. The presented method promises to give insights into the flight heading directions of species in the atmosphere and has the potential to shed light onto the km-range spread of pests and disease vectors.

  19. High-protein goat's milk diet identified through newborn screening: clinical warning of a potentially dangerous dietetic practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maines, Evelina; Gugelmo, Giorgia; Tadiotto, Elisa; Pietrobelli, Angelo; Campostrini, Natascia; Pasini, Andrea; Ion-Popa, Florina; Vincenzi, Monica; Teofoli, Francesca; Camilot, Marta; Bordugo, Andrea

    2017-10-01

    Breast-feeding is an unequalled way of providing optimal food for infants' healthy growth and development and the WHO recommends that infants should be exclusively breast-fed for the first 6 months of life. For mothers who are unable to breast-feed or who decide not to, infant formulas are the safest alternative. Despite recommendations, it is possible that parents make potentially harmful nutritional choices for their children because of cultural beliefs or misinformation on infant nutrition. We describe a possible health risk of not breast-feeding, highlighting a potentially dangerous dietetic practice. Design/Setting/Subjects We report the case of a newborn who was fed with undiluted goat's milk because her mother could not breast-feed and was not aware of infant formulas. The dietary mistake was detected because of a positive expanded newborn screening result, characterized by severe hypertyrosinaemia with high methionine and phenylalanine levels, a pattern suggestive of severe liver impairment. The pattern of plasma amino acids was related to a goat's milk diet, because of its very different composition compared with human milk and infant formula. Our experience demonstrates that, when breast-feeding is not possible or is not exclusive, infants may be at risk of dangerous nutritional practices, including diets with very high protein content, such as a goat's milk diet. Families of not breast-fed infants may need appropriate advice on safe alternatives for infant nutrition to avoid the risks of inappropriate diets.

  20. Genome-wide analysis of gene expression and protein secretion of Babesia canis during virulent infection identifies potential pathogenicity factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eichenberger, Ramon M; Ramakrishnan, Chandra; Russo, Giancarlo; Deplazes, Peter; Hehl, Adrian B

    2017-06-13

    Infections of dogs with virulent strains of Babesia canis are characterized by rapid onset and high mortality, comparable to complicated human malaria. As in other apicomplexan parasites, most Babesia virulence factors responsible for survival and pathogenicity are secreted to the host cell surface and beyond where they remodel and biochemically modify the infected cell interacting with host proteins in a very specific manner. Here, we investigated factors secreted by B. canis during acute infections in dogs and report on in silico predictions and experimental analysis of the parasite's exportome. As a backdrop, we generated a fully annotated B. canis genome sequence of a virulent Hungarian field isolate (strain BcH-CHIPZ) underpinned by extensive genome-wide RNA-seq analysis. We find evidence for conserved factors in apicomplexan hemoparasites involved in immune-evasion (e.g. VESA-protein family), proteins secreted across the iRBC membrane into the host bloodstream (e.g. SA- and Bc28 protein families), potential moonlighting proteins (e.g. profilin and histones), and uncharacterized antigens present during acute crisis in dogs. The combined data provides a first predicted and partially validated set of potential virulence factors exported during fatal infections, which can be exploited for urgently needed innovative intervention strategies aimed at facilitating diagnosis and management of canine babesiosis.

  1. A critical analysis of energy efficiency improvement potentials in Taiwan's cement industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huang, Yun-Hsun; Chang, Yi-Lin; Fleiter, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    The cement industry is the second most energy-intensive sector in Taiwan, which underlines the need to understand its potential for energy efficiency improvement. A bottom-up model-based assessment is utilized to conduct a scenario analysis of energy saving opportunities up to the year 2035. The analysis is supported by detailed expert interviews in all cement plants of Taiwan. The simulation results reveal that by 2035, eighteen energy efficient technologies could result in 25% savings for electricity and 9% savings for fuels under the technical diffusion scenario. This potential totally amounts to about 5000 TJ/year, of which 91% can be implemented cost-effectively assuming a discount rate of 10%. Policy makers should support a fast diffusion of these technologies. Additionally, policy makers can tap further saving potentials. First, by decreasing the clinker share, which is currently regulated to a minimum of 95%. Second, by extending the prohibition to build new cement plants by allowing for replacement of existing capacity with new innovative plants in the coming years. Third, by supporting the use of alternative fuels, which is currently still a niche in Taiwan. - Highlights: •We analyze energy efficiency improvement potentials in Taiwan's cement industry. •Eighteen process-specific technologies are analyzed using a bottom-up model. •Our model systematically reflects the diffusion of technologies over time. •We find energy-saving potentials of 25% for electricity and 9% for fuels in 2035. •91% of the energy-saving potentials can be realized cost-effectively.

  2. The Health Informatics Trial Enhancement Project (HITE: Using routinely collected primary care data to identify potential participants for a depression trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lyons Ronan A

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recruitment to clinical trials can be challenging. We identified anonymous potential participants to an existing pragmatic randomised controlled depression trial to assess the feasibility of using routinely collected data to identify potential trial participants. We discuss the strengths and limitations of this approach, assess its potential value, report challenges and ethical issues encountered. Methods Swansea University's Health Information Research Unit's Secure Anonymised Information Linkage (SAIL database of routinely collected health records was interrogated, using Structured Query Language (SQL. Read codes were used to create an algorithm of inclusion/exclusion criteria with which to identify suitable anonymous participants. Two independent clinicians rated the eligibility of the potential participants' identified. Inter-rater reliability was assessed using the kappa statistic and inter-class correlation. Results The study population (N = 37263 comprised all adults registered at five general practices in Swansea UK. Using the algorithm 867 anonymous potential participants were identified. The sensitivity and specificity results > 0.9 suggested a high degree of accuracy from the algorithm. The inter-rater reliability results indicated strong agreement between the confirming raters. The Intra Class Correlation Coefficient (Cronbach's Alpha > 0.9, suggested excellent agreement and Kappa coefficient > 0.8; almost perfect agreement. Conclusions This proof of concept study showed that routinely collected primary care data can be used to identify potential participants for a pragmatic randomised controlled trial of folate augmentation of antidepressant therapy for the treatment of depression. Further work will be needed to assess generalisability to other conditions and settings and the inclusion of this approach to support Electronic Enhanced Recruitment (EER.

  3. Metabolomics as a tool to identify biomarkers to predict and improve outcomes in reproductive medicine: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bracewell-Milnes, Timothy; Saso, Srdjan; Abdalla, Hossam; Nikolau, Dimitrios; Norman-Taylor, Julian; Johnson, Mark; Holmes, Elaine; Thum, Meen-Yau

    2017-11-01

    Infertility is a complex disorder with significant medical, psychological and financial consequences for patients. With live-birth rates per cycle below 30% and a drive from the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) to encourage single embryo transfer, there is significant research in different areas aiming to improve success rates of fertility treatments. One such area is investigating the causes of infertility at a molecular level, and metabolomics techniques provide a platform for studying relevant biofluids in the reproductive tract. The aim of this systematic review is to examine the recent findings for the potential application of metabolomics to female reproduction, specifically to the metabolomics of follicular fluid (FF), embryo culture medium (ECM) and endometrial fluid. To our knowledge no other systematic review has investigated this topic. English peer-reviewed journals on PubMed, Science Direct, SciFinder, were systematically searched for studies investigating metabolomics and the female reproductive tract with no time restriction set for publications. Studies were assessed for quality using the risk of bias assessment and ROBIN-I. There were 21 studies that met the inclusion criteria and were included in the systematic review. Metabolomic studies have been employed for the compositional analysis of various biofluids in the female reproductive tract, including FF, ECM, blastocoele fluid and endometrial fluid. There is some weak evidence that metabolomics technologies studying ECM might be able to predict the viability of individual embryos and implantation rate better than standard embryo morphology, However these data were not supported by randomized the controlled trials (RCTs) which showed no evidence that using metabolomics is able to improve the most important reproductive outcomes, such as clinical pregnancy and live-birth rates. This systematic review provides guidance for future metabolomic studies on biofluids of the female

  4. Identifying potential differences in ontogentic ages between modern and archaeological Nacella deaurata shells, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Surge, D. M.; Godino, I. B. I.; Álvarez, M.; López, M. B. I.

    2017-12-01

    Patelloid limpet shells are common constituents of rocky shore habitats along the eastern Atlantic basin and are often found in archaeological shell middens. Nacella deaurata is an intertidal species found in the Magellanic Province along the southern tip of South America. Recent discoveries of archaeological shell middens in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, identify N. deaurata as one of the abundant shells in these deposits. Preliminary observations reveal that modern N. deaurata shells achieve larger sizes compared to those found in the archaeological middens. Here, we provide preliminary data to test the hypothesis that the larger, modern specimens grow to older ontogenetic ages than the smaller archaeological specimens. Our results may provide insights into harvesting pressures on this species during the time when the archaeological sites were inhabited. Understanding their annual growth patterns also has important implications for generating oxygen isotope proxy data to reconstruct seasonal variation in sea surface temperature.

  5. Analysis of copy number variations in Holstein cows identify potential mechanisms contributing to differences in residual feed intake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Yali; Bickhart, Derek M; Chung, Hoyoung; Hutchison, Jana L; Norman, H Duane; Connor, Erin E; Liu, George E

    2012-11-01

    Genomic structural variation is an important and abundant source of genetic and phenotypic variation. In this study, we performed an initial analysis of copy number variations (CNVs) using BovineHD SNP genotyping data from 147 Holstein cows identified as having high or low feed efficiency as estimated by residual feed intake (RFI). We detected 443 candidate CNV regions (CNVRs) that represent 18.4 Mb (0.6 %) of the genome. To investigate the functional impacts of CNVs, we created two groups of 30 individual animals with extremely low or high estimated breeding values (EBVs) for RFI, and referred to these groups as low intake (LI; more efficient) or high intake (HI; less efficient), respectively. We identified 240 (~9.0 Mb) and 274 (~10.2 Mb) CNVRs from LI and HI groups, respectively. Approximately 30-40 % of the CNVRs were specific to the LI group or HI group of animals. The 240 LI CNVRs overlapped with 137 Ensembl genes. Network analyses indicated that the LI-specific genes were predominantly enriched for those functioning in the inflammatory response and immunity. By contrast, the 274 HI CNVRs contained 177 Ensembl genes. Network analyses indicated that the HI-specific genes were particularly involved in the cell cycle, and organ and bone development. These results relate CNVs to two key variables, namely immune response and organ and bone development. The data indicate that greater feed efficiency relates more closely to immune response, whereas cattle with reduced feed efficiency may have a greater capacity for organ and bone development.

  6. A pan-cancer analysis of inferred homologous recombination deficiency identifies potential platinum benefit in novel subtypes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marquard, Andrea Marion; Eklund, Aron Charles; Wang, Zhigang C.

    2014-01-01

    Personalized medicine in cancer aims to improve treatment outcome, by exploiting the molecular alterations of the individual tumor to inform therapeutic decisions. Ovarian and triple-negative breast cancers with defects in homologous recombination (HR) DNA repair are highly sensitive to treatment...... of heterozygosity in cancers with loss of either of the tumor suppressor genes BRCA1 or BRCA2, but is also common in ovarian and triple-negative breast cancers with no BRCA1/2 mutations, indicating HR loss due to alternative mechanisms. Recently, three independent methods were published that each quantitate...... Atlas. We found that the three scores are highly correlated with each other, suggesting they measure the effect of similar types of DNA damage. We found a strong association with overall survival only in ovarian cancer, which is consistent with frequent BRCA-related HR deficiency reported for this type...

  7. Gene expression profiling to identify potentially relevant disease outcomes and support human health risk assessment for carbon black nanoparticle exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourdon, Julie A; Williams, Andrew; Kuo, Byron; Moffat, Ivy; White, Paul A; Halappanavar, Sabina; Vogel, Ulla; Wallin, Håkan; Yauk, Carole L

    2013-01-07

    New approaches are urgently needed to evaluate potential hazards posed by exposure to nanomaterials. Gene expression profiling provides information on potential modes of action and human relevance, and tools have recently become available for pathway-based quantitative risk assessment. The objective of this study was to use toxicogenomics in the context of human health risk assessment. We explore the utility of toxicogenomics in risk assessment, using published gene expression data from C57BL/6 mice exposed to 18, 54 and 162 μg Printex 90 carbon black nanoparticles (CBNP). Analysis of CBNP-perturbed pathways, networks and transcription factors revealed concomitant changes in predicted phenotypes (e.g., pulmonary inflammation and genotoxicity), that correlated with dose and time. Benchmark doses (BMDs) for apical endpoints were comparable to minimum BMDs for relevant pathway-specific expression changes. Comparison to inflammatory lung disease models (i.e., allergic airway inflammation, bacterial infection and tissue injury and fibrosis) and human disease profiles revealed that induced gene expression changes in Printex 90 exposed mice were similar to those typical for pulmonary injury and fibrosis. Very similar fibrotic pathways were perturbed in CBNP-exposed mice and human fibrosis disease models. Our synthesis demonstrates how toxicogenomic profiles may be used in human health risk assessment of nanoparticles and constitutes an important step forward in the ultimate recognition of toxicogenomic endpoints in human health risk. As our knowledge of molecular pathways, dose-response characteristics and relevance to human disease continues to grow, we anticipate that toxicogenomics will become increasingly useful in assessing chemical toxicities and in human health risk assessment. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Development of an Improved Methodology to Assess Potential Unconventional Gas Resources

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salazar, Jesus; McVay, Duane A.; Lee, W. John

    2010-01-01

    Considering the important role played today by unconventional gas resources in North America and their enormous potential for the future around the world, it is vital to both policy makers and industry that the volumes of these resources and the impact of technology on these resources be assessed. To provide for optimal decision making regarding energy policy, research funding, and resource development, it is necessary to reliably quantify the uncertainty in these resource assessments. Since the 1970s, studies to assess potential unconventional gas resources have been conducted by various private and governmental agencies, the most rigorous of which was by the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The USGS employed a cell-based, probabilistic methodology which used analytical equations to calculate distributions of the resources assessed. USGS assessments have generally produced distributions for potential unconventional gas resources that, in our judgment, are unrealistically narrow for what are essentially undiscovered, untested resources. In this article, we present an improved methodology to assess potential unconventional gas resources. Our methodology is a stochastic approach that includes Monte Carlo simulation and correlation between input variables. Application of the improved methodology to the Uinta-Piceance province of Utah and Colorado with USGS data validates the means and standard deviations of resource distributions produced by the USGS methodology, but reveals that these distributions are not right skewed, as expected for a natural resource. Our investigation indicates that the unrealistic shape and width of the gas resource distributions are caused by the use of narrow triangular input parameter distributions. The stochastic methodology proposed here is more versatile and robust than the USGS analytic methodology. Adoption of the methodology, along with a careful examination and revision of input distributions, should allow a more realistic

  9. Human performance improvement in organizations: Potential application for the nuclear industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2005-11-01

    This publication is primarily intended for managers and specialists in nuclear facility operating organizations working in the area of human performance improvement. It is intended to provide them with practical information they can use to improve human performance in their organizations. While some of the information provided in this publication is based upon the experience of nuclear facility operating organizations, most of it comes from human performance improvement initiatives in non-nuclear organizations and industries. The nuclear industry has a long tradition of sharing good management practices in order to foster continuous improvement. However, it is not always realized that many of the practices that are now well established initially came from non-nuclear industries and were subsequently adapted for application to nuclear power plant operating organizations. There is, therefore, good reason to periodically review non-nuclear industry practices for ideas that might have direct or indirect application to the nuclear industry in order to potentially gain benefits such as the following: new approaches to certain problem areas, insights into new or impending challenges, improvements in existing practices, benchmarking of opportunities, development of learning organizations and avoidance of collective blind spots. The preparation of this report was an activity of the project on Effective Training to Achieve Excellence in the Performance of NPP Personnel. The objective of this project is to enhance the capability of Member States to utilize proven practices developed and transferred by the IAEA for improving personnel performance. The expected outcome from this project is the increased use by organizations in Members States of proven engineering and management practices and methodologies developed and transferred by the IAEA to improve personnel performance

  10. Potential sources of Triatoma infestans reinfesting peridomiciles identified by morphological characterization in Los Llanos, La Rioja, Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Laura Hernández

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The presence of Triatoma infestans in habitats treated with insecticides constitutes a frequent problem in endemic areas. Basing our study on the hypothesis that descendants of a residual population should be more similar to the pre-treatment population than to any other, we compared the indications of two quantitative morphological approaches. This study seeks to find the origin of 247 T. infestans from three populations found in two chicken coops and a goat corral after treatment with insecticides. The results obtained by quantitative morphology suggest that the T. infestans found between three-34 months after the application of insecticides formed mixed populations with insects derived from residual foci and neighbouring habitats. Our analyses also showed the presence of a phenotype which does not resemble neither the pre-treatment phenotype nor the one from neighbouring populations, suggesting the presence of a particular post-treatment phenotype. The heads size showed some variations in males from different populations and remained unchanged in females, which reinforces the hypothesis of an intraspecific competition for food with priority for females. This article presents, for the first time, the combined analysis of geometric morphometry of heads and antennal phenotypes to identify the composition of reinfesting populations.

  11. Global transcriptomic profiling of aspen trees under elevated [CO2] to identify potential molecular mechanisms responsible for enhanced radial growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Hairong; Gou, Jiqing; Yordanov, Yordan; Zhang, Huaxin; Thakur, Ramesh; Jones, Wendy; Burton, Andrew

    2013-03-01

    Aspen (Populus tremuloides) trees growing under elevated [CO(2)] at a free-air CO(2) enrichment (FACE) site produced significantly more biomass than control trees. We investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying the observed increase in biomass by producing transcriptomic profiles of the vascular cambium zone (VCZ) and leaves, and then performed a comparative study to identify significantly changed genes and pathways after 12 years exposure to elevated [CO(2)]. In leaves, elevated [CO(2)] enhanced expression of genes related to Calvin cycle activity and linked pathways. In the VCZ, the pathways involved in cell growth, cell division, hormone metabolism, and secondary cell wall formation were altered while auxin conjugation, ABA synthesis, and cytokinin glucosylation and degradation were inhibited. Similarly, the genes involved in hemicellulose and pectin biosynthesis were enhanced, but some genes that catalyze important steps in lignin biosynthesis pathway were inhibited. Evidence from systemic analysis supported the functioning of multiple molecular mechanisms that underpin the enhanced radial growth in response to elevated [CO(2)].

  12. Comprehensive Analysis of the COBRA-Like (COBL) Gene Family in Gossypium Identifies Two COBLs Potentially Associated with Fiber Quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niu, Erli; Shang, Xiaoguang; Cheng, Chaoze; Bao, Jianghao; Zeng, Yanda; Cai, Caiping; Du, Xiongming; Guo, Wangzhen

    2015-01-01

    COBRA-Like (COBL) genes, which encode a plant-specific glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchored protein, have been proven to be key regulators in the orientation of cell expansion and cellulose crystallinity status. Genome-wide analysis has been performed in A. thaliana, O. sativa, Z. mays and S. lycopersicum, but little in Gossypium. Here we identified 19, 18 and 33 candidate COBL genes from three sequenced cotton species, diploid cotton G. raimondii, G. arboreum and tetraploid cotton G. hirsutum acc. TM-1, respectively. These COBL members were anchored onto 10 chromosomes in G. raimondii and could be divided into two subgroups. Expression patterns of COBL genes showed highly developmental and spatial regulation in G. hirsutum acc. TM-1. Of them, GhCOBL9 and GhCOBL13 were preferentially expressed at the secondary cell wall stage of fiber development and had significantly co-upregulated expression with cellulose synthase genes GhCESA4, GhCESA7 and GhCESA8. Besides, GhCOBL9 Dt and GhCOBL13 Dt were co-localized with previously reported cotton fiber quality quantitative trait loci (QTLs) and the favorable allele types of GhCOBL9 Dt had significantly positive correlations with fiber quality traits, indicating that these two genes might play an important role in fiber development. PMID:26710066

  13. IBT-based quantitative proteomics identifies potential regulatory proteins involved in pigmentation of purple sea cucumber, Apostichopus japonicus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xing, Lili; Sun, Lina; Liu, Shilin; Li, Xiaoni; Zhang, Libin; Yang, Hongsheng

    2017-09-01

    Sea cucumbers are an important economic species and exhibit high yield value among aquaculture animals. Purple sea cucumbers are very rare and beautiful and have stable hereditary patterns. In this study, isobaric tags (IBT) were first used to reveal the molecular mechanism of pigmentation in the body wall of the purple sea cucumber. We analyzed the proteomes of purple sea cucumber in early pigmentation stage (Pa), mid pigmentation stage (Pb) and late pigmentation stage (Pc), resulting in the identification of 5580 proteins, including 1099 differentially expressed proteins in Pb: Pa and 339 differentially expressed proteins in Pc: Pb. GO and KEGG analyses revealed possible differentially expressed proteins, including"melanogenesis", "melanosome", "melanoma", "pigment-biosynthetic process", "Epidermis development", "Ras-signaling pathway", "Wnt-signaling pathway", "response to UV light", and "tyrosine metabolism", involved in pigment synthesis and regulation in purple sea cucumbers. The large number of differentially expressed proteins identified here should be highly useful in further elucidating the mechanisms underlying pigmentation in sea cucumbers. Furthermore, these results may also provide the base for further identification of proteins involved in resistance mechanisms against melanoma, albinism, UV damage, and other diseases in sea cucumbers. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  14. Gonad Transcriptome Analysis of the Pacific Oyster Crassostrea gigas Identifies Potential Genes Regulating the Sex Determination and Differentiation Process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yue, Chenyang; Li, Qi; Yu, Hong

    2018-04-01

    The Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas is a commercially important bivalve in aquaculture worldwide. C. gigas has a fascinating sexual reproduction system consisting of dioecism, sex change, and occasional hermaphroditism, while knowledge of the molecular mechanisms of sex determination and differentiation is still limited. In this study, the transcriptomes of male and female gonads at different gametogenesis stages were characterized by RNA-seq. Hierarchical clustering based on genes differentially expressed revealed that 1269 genes were expressed specifically in female gonads and 817 genes were expressed increasingly over the course of spermatogenesis. Besides, we identified two and one gene modules related to female and male gonad development, respectively, using weighted gene correlation network analysis (WGCNA). Interestingly, GO and KEGG enrichment analysis showed that neurotransmitter-related terms were significantly enriched in genes related to ovary development, suggesting that the neurotransmitters were likely to regulate female sex differentiation. In addition, two hub genes related to testis development, lncRNA LOC105321313 and Cg-Sh3kbp1, and one hub gene related to ovary development, Cg-Malrd1-like, were firstly investigated. This study points out the role of neurotransmitter and non-coding RNA regulation during gonad development and produces lists of novel relevant candidate genes for further studies. All of these provided valuable information to understand the molecular mechanisms of C. gigas sex determination and differentiation.

  15. A follow-up study for left ventricular mass on chromosome 12p11 identifies potential candidate genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Slifer Susan

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Left ventricular mass (LVM is an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Previously we found evidence for linkage to chromosome 12p11 in Dominican families, with a significant increase in a subset of families with high average waist circumference (WC. In the present study, we use association analysis to further study the genetic effect on LVM. Methods Association analysis with LVM was done in the one LOD critical region of the linkage peak in an independent sample of 897 Caribbean Hispanics. Genotype data were available on 7085 SNPs from 23 to 53 MB on chromosome 12p11. Adjustment was made for vascular risk factors and population substructure using an additive genetic model. Subset analysis by WC was performed to test for a difference in genetic effects between the high and low WC subsets. Results In the overall analysis, the most significant association was found to rs10743465, downstream of the SOX5 gene (p = 1.27E-05. Also, 19 additional SNPs had nominal p TMTC1. Twelve additional SNPs in or near 6 genes had p Conclusions The current study supports previously identified evidence by linkage for a genetic effect on LVM on chromosome 12p11 using association analysis in population-based Caribbean Hispanic cohort. SOX5 may play an important role in the regulation of LVM. An interaction of TMTC1 with abdominal obesity may contribute to phenotypic variation of LVM.

  16. Recombinant yeast screen for new inhibitors of human acetyl-CoA carboxylase 2 identifies potential drugs to treat obesity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marjanovic, Jasmina; Chalupska, Dominika; Patenode, Caroline; Coster, Adam; Arnold, Evan; Ye, Alice; Anesi, George; Lu, Ying; Okun, Ilya; Tkachenko, Sergey; Haselkorn, Robert; Gornicki, Piotr

    2010-01-01

    Acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) is a key enzyme of fatty acid metabolism with multiple isozymes often expressed in different eukaryotic cellular compartments. ACC-made malonyl-CoA serves as a precursor for fatty acids; it also regulates fatty acid oxidation and feeding behavior in animals. ACC provides an important target for new drugs to treat human diseases. We have developed an inexpensive nonradioactive high-throughput screening system to identify new ACC inhibitors. The screen uses yeast gene-replacement strains depending for growth on cloned human ACC1 and ACC2. In “proof of concept” experiments, growth of such strains was inhibited by compounds known to target human ACCs. The screen is sensitive and robust. Medium-size chemical libraries yielded new specific inhibitors of human ACC2. The target of the best of these inhibitors was confirmed with in vitro enzymatic assays. This compound is a new drug chemotype inhibiting human ACC2 with 2.8 μM IC50 and having no effect on human ACC1 at 100 μM. PMID:20439761

  17. Decreased Numbers of CD57+CD3- Cells Identify Potential Innate Immune Differences in Patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siniscalco, Dario; Mijatovic, Tatjana; Bosmans, Eugene; Cirillo, Alessandra; Kruzliak, Peter; Lombardi, Vincent C; De Meirleir, Kenny; Antonucci, Nicola

    2016-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are complex, and severe heterogeneous neurodevelopmental pathologies with accepted but complex immune system abnormalities. Additional knowledge regarding potential immune dysfunctions may provide a greater understanding of this malady. The aim of this study was to evaluate the CD57(+)CD3(-) mature lymphocyte subpopulation of natural killer cells as a marker of immune dysfunction in ASD. Three-color flow cytometry-based analysis of fresh peripheral blood samples from children with autism was utilized to measure CD57(+)CD3(-) lymphocytes. A reduction of CD57(+)CD3(-) lymphocyte count was recorded in a significant number of patients with autism. We demonstrated that the number of peripheral CD57(+)CD3(-) cells in children with autism often falls below the clinically accepted normal range. This implies that a defect in the counter-regulatory functions necessary for balancing pro-inflammatory cytokines exists, thus opening the way to chronic inflammatory conditions associated with ASD. Copyright © 2016 International Institute of Anticancer Research (Dr. John G. Delinassios), All rights reserved.

  18. A Human Error Analysis Procedure for Identifying Potential Error Modes and Influencing Factors for Test and Maintenance Activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Jae Whan; Park, Jin Kyun

    2010-01-01

    Periodic or non-periodic test and maintenance (T and M) activities in large, complex systems such as nuclear power plants (NPPs) are essential for sustaining stable and safe operation of the systems. On the other hand, it also has been raised that human erroneous actions that might occur during T and M activities has the possibility of incurring unplanned reactor trips (RTs) or power derate, making safety-related systems unavailable, or making the reliability of components degraded. Contribution of human errors during normal and abnormal activities of NPPs to the unplanned RTs is known to be about 20% of the total events. This paper introduces a procedure for predictively analyzing human error potentials when maintenance personnel perform T and M tasks based on a work procedure or their work plan. This procedure helps plant maintenance team prepare for plausible human errors. The procedure to be introduced is focusing on the recurrent error forms (or modes) in execution-based errors such as wrong object, omission, too little, and wrong action

  19. Potential of in vitro mutation breeding for the improvement of vegetatively propagated crop plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Constantin, M.J.

    1984-01-01

    Significant progress has been realized in a number of technologies (e.g., protoplast cultures), collectively referred to as plant cell and tissue culture, within the last decade. In vitro culture technologies offer great potentials for the improvement of crop plants, both sexually and asexually propagated; however, to realize these potentials plant regeneration from selected cells must be achieved for the species of interest. Where whole plants have been regenerated from selected cells, the mutant trait was expressed in some but not in all cases, and the inheritance patterns included maternal, recessive, semi-dominant and dominant (epigenetic events have also been reported). Improved cultivars of sugarcane have been developed from in vitro culture selections. In vitro mutation breeding can be done using an array of physical and chemical mutagens that has been found to be effective in the treatment of seeds, pollen, vegetative plant parts and growing plants. Selection at the cell level for a range of mutant traits has been demonstrated; however, innovative selection schemes will have to be developed to select for agriculturally important traits such as date of maturity, resistance to lodging, height etc. An interdisciplinary team approach involving the combined use of in vitro culture technology, mutagenesis, and plant breeding/genetics offers the greatest probability for success in crop improvement. (author)

  20. Quality Improvement to Demonstrate the Lack of Reliability of the Human Papillomavirus mRNA Assay to Identify Women With Latent Human Papillomavirus Infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotton, Sarah; Brown, Robert E; Nugent, Elizabeth K; Robazetti, Sonia C; Berens, Pamela D; Smith, Judith A

    2018-04-01

    To assess the consistency between human papillomavirus (HPV) mRNA testing in women with a history of previous HPV infections diagnosed by HPV DNA assay and the potential effects on follow-up HPV screening. This was a quality improvement study that used data from a pathology laboratory software database reviewed from November 2014 to June 2016 to identify female patients aged 30 years or older with greater than one HPV-positive result, including one or more HPV mRNA assay results and one or more documented HPV DNA assay results for comparison. Previous correlative cytology and colposcopic histopathology were also documented. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' cervical cancer screening guidelines were used to compare potential differences in follow-up recommendations. Four hundred twenty-five charts for female patients 30 years of age or older were identified with one or more prior high-risk HPV infections by DNA assay. There was a 69.3% difference in HPV mRNA results compared with previous HPV DNA-positive results. There was a potential change in follow-up for 71.7% of patients with one prior high-risk-HPV-positive result and 60.0% of patients with two or more prior high-risk HPV-positive results. There were 231 colposcopy reports evaluated in this study. Of these, 62 (26.8%) were abnormal colposcopy reports, including 45 low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions, 15 high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions, and two cancers. Twenty-five (40.3%) abnormal colposcopy findings were in patients with a history of at least than two prior HPV DNA-positive results and a report of currently being HPV-negative with the mRNA assay. The HPV mRNA assays are less sensitive for detection of latent HPV infections compared with HPV DNA assays. Based on these data and the potential change in follow-up care, the HPV mRNA assay should not be used for a primary screening tool for cervical cancer. Many pathology laboratories have shifted to using the HPV mRNA assay

  1. Global Health Education: a cross-sectional study among German medical students to identify needs, deficits and potential benefits (Part 2 of 2: Knowledge gaps and potential benefits).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozorgmehr, Kayvan; Menzel-Severing, Johannes; Schubert, Kirsten; Tinnemann, Peter

    2010-10-08

    In Germany, educational deficits or potential benefits involved in global health education have not been analysed till now. We assess the importance medical students place on learning about social determinants of health (SDH) and assess their knowledge of global health topics in relation to (i) mobility patterns, their education in (ii) tropical medicine or (iii) global health. Cross-sectional study among medical students from all 36 medical schools in Germany using a web-based, semi-structured questionnaire. Participants were recruited via mailing-lists of students' unions, all medical students registered in 2007 were eligible to participate in the study. We captured international mobility patterns, exposure to global health learning opportunities and attitudes to learning about SDH. Both an objective and subjective knowledge assessment were performed. 1126 online-replies were received and analysed. International health electives in developing countries correlated significantly with a higher importance placed on all provided SDH (p ≤ 0.006). Participation in tropical medicine (p educational system' (p = 0.007) and the 'health system structure' (p = 0.007), while the item 'politics' was marginally significant (p = 0.053).In the knowledge assessment students achieved an average score of 3.6 (SD 1.5; Mdn 4.0), 75% achieved a score of 4.0 or less (Q25 = 3.0; Q75 = 4.0) from a maximum achievable score of 8.0. A better performance was associated with international health electives (p = 0.032), participation in tropical medicine (p = 0.038) and global health (p = 0.258) courses. The importance medical students in our sample placed on learning about SDH strongly interacts with students' mobility, and participation in tropical medicine and global health courses. The knowledge assessment revealed deficits and outlined needs to further analyse education gaps in global health. Developing concerted educational interventions aimed at fostering students' engagement with SDH

  2. Plasma membrane proteomics of human breast cancer cell lines identifies potential targets for breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yvonne S Ziegler

    Full Text Available The use of broad spectrum chemotherapeutic agents to treat breast cancer results in substantial and debilitating side effects, necessitating the development of targeted therapies to limit tumor proliferation and prevent metastasis. In recent years, the list of approved targeted therapies has expanded, and it includes both monoclonal antibodies and small molecule inhibitors that interfere with key proteins involved in the uncontrolled growth and migration of cancer cells. The targeting of plasma membrane proteins has been most successful to date, and this is reflected in the large representation of these proteins as targets of newer therapies. In view of these facts, experiments were designed to investigate the plasma membrane proteome of a variety of human breast cancer cell lines representing hormone-responsive, ErbB2 over-expressing and triple negative cell types, as well as a benign control. Plasma membranes were isolated by using an aqueous two-phase system, and the resulting proteins were subjected to mass spectrometry analysis. Overall, each of the cell lines expressed some unique proteins, and a number of proteins were expressed in multiple cell lines, but in patterns that did not always follow traditional clinical definitions of breast cancer type. From our data, it can be deduced that most cancer cells possess multiple strategies to promote uncontrolled growth, reflected in aberrant expression of tyrosine kinases, cellular adhesion molecules, and structural proteins. Our data set provides a very rich and complex picture of plasma membrane proteins present on breast cancer cells, and the sorting and categorizing of this data provides interesting insights into the biology, classification, and potential treatment of this prevalent and debilitating disease.

  3. Gamma-Irradiated Mannheimia (Pasteurella) Haemolytica Identified by rRNA Gene Sequencing as a Potential Vaccine in Mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Araby, E.

    2014-01-01

    Pneumonic pasteurellosis is a significant disease in beef production medicine. The most information suggests that this disease is a $700 million dollar per year economic burden in bovine food animal production. The current study was designed to assess the immune efficacy of whole cell killed of M. haemolytica strain from satisfactory cases (infected lung from sheep). The efficacy of gamma- irradiated M. haemolytica vaccine (GIV) was evaluated in mice in comparison to the classical aqueous formalized (AFV) one. The bacteria under study were cultivation on blood agar, purification and genetically identified. Then the bacterial cells were exposed to different doses of gamma radiation (2- 20 kGy) with 2 kGy intervals and the dose response curve of the survivors was plotted and 20 kGy was selected as the dose for the preparation of the vaccine. A total of 30 male mice (two weeks – old) were used for the further experimental investigations. Animals were divided into three equal groups each of 10 animals. The first group (group A) was given GIV . The second group (group B) received AFV. The third group (group C) was injected with sterile saline solution and represents the control. Animals were vaccinated via intraperitoneal (i.p) injection with 1x10 8 CFU per treated mouse. After vaccination, the immuno response was determined by cellular surface antigens-reactive antibodies using a modified protein- electrophoresis procedure. Antibody-antigen hybrids was visualized at molecular weight more than 225 KDa in samples represented M. haemolytica antibodies group (A, B) against both bacterial samples (M. haemolytica and Pasteurella multocida ) , while non-treated bacterial cells in which cells incubated with serum of mice group (C) revealed no hybridization reaction, this results verify that, there is shared cellular surface antigens among the two Pasteurella species. Also, the bacterial distribution with (LD 50 ) 2x10 7 CFU of a live M. heamolytica into vaccinated and non

  4. Identifying conditions for elimination and epidemic potential of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in nursing homes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nataliya G. Batina

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Residents of nursing homes are commonly colonized with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA but there is a limited understanding of the dynamics and determinants of spread in this setting. To address this gap, we sought to use mathematical modeling to assess the epidemic potential of MRSA in nursing homes and to determine conditions under which non-USA300 and USA300 MRSA could be eliminated or reduced in the facilities. Methods Model parameters were estimated from data generated during a longitudinal study of MRSA in 6 Wisconsin nursing homes. The data included subject colonization status with strain-specific MRSA collected every 3 months for up to 1 year. Deterministic and stochastic co-colonization and single-strain models were developed to describe strain-specific dynamics of MRSA in these facilities. Basic reproduction numbers of strain-independent MRSA, non-USA300 and USA300 MRSA were estimated numerically. The impact of antibiotic use in the past 3 months on the prevalence of strain-specific MRSA and associated basic reproduction numbers were evaluated. Results Our models predicted that MRSA would persist in Wisconsin nursing homes, and non-USA300 would remain the dominant circulating strain. MRSA eradication was theoretically achievable by elimination of MRSA-positive admissions over the course of years. Substantial reductions in MRSA prevalence could be attained through marked increase in clearance rates or reduction in MRSA-positive admissions sustained over years. The basic reproduction number of strain-independent MRSA was 0.18 (95 % CI = 0.13–0.23. Recent antibiotic use increased the prevalence of strain-specific MRSA and associated basic reproduction numbers, but was unlikely to lead to an outbreak. Conclusions Based on our model, MRSA elimination from nursing homes, while theoretically possible, was unlikely to be achieved in practice. Decolonization therapy that can sustain higher

  5. Efficiencies and improvement potential of building integrated photovoltaic thermal (BIPVT) system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ibrahim, Adnan; Fudholi, Ahmad; Sopian, Kamaruzzaman; Othman, Mohd Yusof; Ruslan, Mohd Hafidz

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Performances analysis of BIPVT solar collector based on energy and exergy analyses. • A new absorber design of BIPVT solar collector is presented. • BIPVT solar collector is produced primary-energy saving efficiency from about 73% to 81%. • PVT energy efficiency varies between 55% and 62% where as the variation in the PVT exergy efficiency is from 12% to 14%. • The improvement potential is between 98 and 404 W. - Abstract: Building integrated photovoltaic thermal (BIPVT) system has been designed to produce both electricity and hot water and later integrated to building. The hot water is produced at the useful temperatures for the applications in Malaysia such as building integrated heating system and domestic hot water system as well as many industrial including agricultural and commercial applications. The photovoltaic thermal (PVT) system comprises of a high efficiency multicrystal photovoltaic (PV) module and spiral flow absorber for BIPVT application, have been performed and investigated. In this study, it was assumed that the absorber was attached underneath the flat plate single glazing sheet of polycrystalline silicon PV module and water has been used as a heat transfer medium in absorber. Performances analysis of BIPVT system based on energy and exergy analyses. It was based on efficiencies including energy and exergy, and exergetic improvement potential (IP) based on the metrological condition of Malaysia has been carried out. Results show that the hourly variation for BIPVT system, the PVT energy efficiency of 55–62% is higher than the PVT exergy efficiency of 12–14%. The improvement potential increases with increasing solar radiation, it is between 98 and 404 W. On the other hand, BIPVT system was produced primary-energy saving efficiency from about 73% to 81%

  6. Substantial improvements of fuel economy. Potentials of electric and hybrid electric vehicles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Joergensen, K [Technical Univ. of Denmark (Denmark); Nielsen, L H [Forskningscenter Risoe (Denmark)

    1996-12-01

    This paper evaluates the scope for improvement of the energy and environmental impacts of road traffic by means of electrical and hybrid electric propulsion. These technologies promise considerable improvements of the fuel economy of vehicles compared to the present vehicle types as well as beneficial effects for the energy and traffic system. The paper - based on work carried out in the project `Transportation fuel based on renewable energy`, funded by the National Energy Agency of Denmark and carried out by Department of Buildings and Energy, Technical University of Denmark and System Analysis Department, Risoe National Laboratory - assesses the potentials for reduction of the primary energy consumption and emissions, and points to the necessary technical development to reap these benefits. A case study concerning passenger cars is analysed by means of computer simulations, comparing electric and hybrid electric passenger car to an equivalent reference vehicle (a conventional gasoline passenger car). (au) 10 refs.

  7. Dynamic Potential Intensity: An improved representation of the ocean’s impact on tropical cyclones

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Balaguru, Karthik; Foltz, Gregory R.; Leung, Lai-Yung; D' Asaro, Eric; Emanuel, Kerry A.; Liu, Hailong; Zedler, Sarah E.

    2015-08-18

    To incorporate the effects of tropical cyclone (TC)-induced upper ocean mixing and sea surface temperature (SST) cooling on TC intensification, a vertical average of temperature down to a fixed depth was proposed as a replacement for SST within the framework of air-sea coupled Potential Intensity (PI). However, the depth to which TC-induced mixing penetrates may vary substantially with ocean stratification and storm state. To account for these effects, here we develop a “Dynamic Potential Intensity” (DPI) based on considerations of stratified fluid turbulence. For the Argo period 2004–2013 and the three major TC basins of the Northern Hemisphere, we show that the DPI explains 11–32% of the variance in TC intensification, compared to 0–16% using previous methods. The improvement obtained using the DPI is particularly large in the eastern Pacific where the thermocline is shallow and ocean stratification effects are strong.

  8. ISD97, a computer program to analyze data from a series of in situ measurements on a grid and identify potential localized areas of elevated activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reginatto, M.; Shebell, P.; Miller, K.M.

    1997-10-01

    A computer program, ISD97, was developed to analyze data from a series of in situ measurements on a grid and identify potential localized areas of elevated activity. The ISD97 code operates using a two-step process. A deconvolution of the data is carried out using the maximum entropy method, and a map of activity on the ground that fits the data within experimental error is generated. This maximum entropy map is then analyzed to determine the locations and magnitudes of potential areas of elevated activity that are consistent with the data. New deconvolutions are then carried out for each potential area of elevated activity identified by the code. Properties of the algorithm are demonstrated using data from actual field measurements

  9. Novel self-emulsifying formulation of quercetin for improved in vivo antioxidant potential

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jain, Sanyog; Jain, Amit K; Pohekar, Milind

    2013-01-01

    Quercetin (QT) was formulated into a novel self-emulsifying drug delivery system (SEDDS) to improve its oral bioavailability and antioxidant potential compared to free drug. Capmul MCM was selected as the oily phase on the basis of optimum solubility of QT in oil. Tween 20 and ethanol were selected.......8. The ratio of 40:40:20 w/w, Capmul MCM:QT (19:1)/Tween 20/ethanol was optimized based on its ability to form a spontaneous submicrometer emulsion in simulated gastrointestinal fluids. DPPH scavenging assay showed comparable antioxidant activity of QT-SEDDS to free QT. QT-SEDDS was robust in terms...

  10. An improved ChIP-seq peak detection system for simultaneously identifying post-translational modified transcription factors by combinatorial fusion, using SUMOylation as an example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Chia-Yang; Chu, Chia-Han; Hsu, Hung-Wei; Hsu, Fang-Rong; Tang, Chung Yi; Wang, Wen-Ching; Kung, Hsing-Jien; Chang, Pei-Ching

    2014-01-01

    Post-translational modification (PTM) of transcriptional factors and chromatin remodelling proteins is recognized as a major mechanism by which transcriptional regulation occurs. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) in combination with high-throughput sequencing (ChIP-seq) is being applied as a gold standard when studying the genome-wide binding sites of transcription factor (TFs). This has greatly improved our understanding of protein-DNA interactions on a genomic-wide scale. However, current ChIP-seq peak calling tools are not sufficiently sensitive and are unable to simultaneously identify post-translational modified TFs based on ChIP-seq analysis; this is largely due to the wide-spread presence of multiple modified TFs. Using SUMO-1 modification as an example; we describe here an improved approach that allows the simultaneous identification of the particular genomic binding regions of all TFs with SUMO-1 modification. Traditional peak calling methods are inadequate when identifying multiple TF binding sites that involve long genomic regions and therefore we designed a ChIP-seq processing pipeline for the detection of peaks via a combinatorial fusion method. Then, we annotate the peaks with known transcription factor binding sites (TFBS) using the Transfac Matrix Database (v7.0), which predicts potential SUMOylated TFs. Next, the peak calling result was further analyzed based on the promoter proximity, TFBS annotation, a literature review, and was validated by ChIP-real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) and ChIP-reChIP real-time qPCR. The results show clearly that SUMOylated TFs are able to be pinpointed using our pipeline. A methodology is presented that analyzes SUMO-1 ChIP-seq patterns and predicts related TFs. Our analysis uses three peak calling tools. The fusion of these different tools increases the precision of the peak calling results. TFBS annotation method is able to predict potential SUMOylated TFs. Here, we offer a new approach that enhances Ch

  11. Potential of Lactobacillus reuteri from Spontaneous 
Sourdough as a Starter Additive for Improving Quality Parameters of Bread

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaičiulytė-Funk, Lina; Šalomskienė, Joana; Alenčikienė, Gitana; Mieželienė, Aldona

    2016-01-01

    Summary Retardation of microbial spoilage of bread can be achieved by the use of spontaneous sourdough with an antimicrobial activity. This study was undertaken to identify lactic acid bacteria naturally occurring in spontaneous sourdough and use them for quality improvement and prolonging shelf life of rye, wheat and rye with wheat bread. Identification of isolates from spontaneous sourdough by pyrosequencing assay showed that Lactobacillus reuteri were dominant lactic acid bacteria. The isolates showed a wide range of antimicrobial activity and displayed a synergistic activity against other lactobacilli, some lactococci and foodborne yeasts. The best application of spontaneous sourdough was noticed in the rye bread with the lowest crumb firmness of the final product, although the sensory results of wheat and rye with wheat bread did not statistically differ from control bread. L. reuteri showed a high preserving capacity against fungi during storage. This may be due to bacteriocins and various fatty acids secreted into the growth medium that were identified by agar well diffusion assay and gas chromatography. L. reuteri showing high antimicrobial activity have the potential to be used as a starter additive that could improve safety and/or shelf life of bread. PMID:27956866

  12. Potential of Lactobacillus reuteri from Spontaneous Sourdough as a Starter Additive for Improving Quality Parameters of Bread

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lina Vaičiulytė-Funk

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Retardation of microbial spoilage of bread can be achieved by the use of spontaneous sourdough with an antimicrobial activity. This study was undertaken to identify lactic acid bacteria naturally occurring in spontaneous sourdough and use them for quality improvement and prolonging shelf life of rye, wheat and rye with wheat bread. Identification of isolates from spontaneous sourdough by pyrosequencing assay showed that Lactobacillus reuteri were dominant lactic acid bacteria. The isolates showed a wide range of antimicrobial activity and displayed a synergistic activity against other lactobacilli, some lactococci and foodborne yeasts. The best application of spontaneous sourdough was noticed in the rye bread with the lowest crumb fi rmness of the fi nal product, although the sensory results of wheat and rye with wheat bread did not statistically diff er from control bread. L. reuteri showed a high preserving capacity against fungi during storage. This may be due to bacteriocins and various fatty acids secreted into the growth medium that were identified by agar well diffusion assay and gas chromatography. L. reuteri showing high antimicrobial activity have the potential to be used as a starter additive that could improve safety and/or shelf life of bread.

  13. Use of a quality improvement tool, the prioritization matrix, to identify and prioritize triage software algorithm enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    North, Frederick; Varkey, Prathiba; Caraballo, Pedro; Vsetecka, Darlene; Bartel, Greg

    2007-10-11

    Complex decision support software can require significant effort in maintenance and enhancement. A quality improvement tool, the prioritization matrix, was successfully used to guide software enhancement of algorithms in a symptom assessment call center.

  14. Aging Road User Survey and Crash Analysis to Identify Issues and Applicable Improvement Strategies for Kansas Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2018-02-02

    The United States has over 4-million mi (6-million km) of roadways. The renewable energy potential on this size of land is enormous and could significantly contribute to the electricity demands of the United States. Developing piezoelectric technolog...

  15. The effect of science learning integrated with local potential to improve science process skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahardini, Riris Riezqia Budy; Suryadarma, I. Gusti Putu; Wilujeng, Insih

    2017-08-01

    This research was aimed to know the effectiveness of science learning that integrated with local potential to improve student`s science process skill. The research was quasi experiment using non-equivalent control group design. The research involved all student of Muhammadiyah Imogiri Junior High School on grade VII as a population. The sample in this research was selected through cluster random sampling, namely VII B (experiment group) and VII C (control group). Instrument that used in this research is a nontest instrument (science process skill observation's form) adapted Desak Megawati's research (2016). The aspect of science process skills were making observation and communication. The data were using univariat (ANOVA) analyzed at 0,05 significance level and normalized gain score for science process skill increase's category. The result is science learning that integrated with local potential was effective to improve science process skills of student (Sig. 0,00). This learning can increase science process skill, shown by a normalized gain score value at 0,63 (medium category) in experiment group and 0,29 (low category) in control group.

  16. Appearance traits in fish farming: progress from classical genetics to genomics, providing insight into current and potential genetic improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nelson eColihueque

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Appearance traits in fish, those external body characteristics that influence consumer acceptance at point of sale, have come to the forefront of commercial fish farming, as culture profitability is closely linked to management of these traits. Appearance traits comprise mainly body shape and skin pigmentation. Analysis of the genetic basis of these traits in different fish reveals significant genetic variation within populations, indicating potential for their genetic improvement. Work into ascertaining the minor or major genes underlying appearance traits for commercial fish is emerging, with substantial progress in model fish in terms of identifying genes that control body shape and skin colors. In this review, we describe research progress to date, especially with regard to commercial fish, and discuss genomic findings in model fish in order to better address the genetic basis of the traits. Given that appearance traits are important in commercial fish, the genomic information related to this issue promises to accelerate the selection process in coming years.

  17. Appearance traits in fish farming: progress from classical genetics to genomics, providing insight into current and potential genetic improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colihueque, Nelson; Araneda, Cristian

    2014-01-01

    Appearance traits in fish, those external body characteristics that influence consumer acceptance at point of sale, have come to the forefront of commercial fish farming, as culture profitability is closely linked to management of these traits. Appearance traits comprise mainly body shape and skin pigmentation. Analysis of the genetic basis of these traits in different fish reveals significant genetic variation within populations, indicating potential for their genetic improvement. Work into ascertaining the minor or major genes underlying appearance traits for commercial fish is emerging, with substantial progress in model fish in terms of identifying genes that control body shape and skin colors. In this review, we describe research progress to date, especially with regard to commercial fish, and discuss genomic findings in model fish in order to better address the genetic basis of the traits. Given that appearance traits are important in commercial fish, the genomic information related to this issue promises to accelerate the selection process in coming years. PMID:25140172

  18. Development of computational fluid dynamics--habitat suitability (CFD-HSI) models to identify potential passage--Challenge zones for migratory fishes in the Penobscot River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haro, Alexander J.; Dudley, Robert W.; Chelminski, Michael

    2012-01-01

    A two-dimensional computational fluid dynamics-habitat suitability (CFD–HSI) model was developed to identify potential zones of shallow depth and high water velocity that may present passage challenges for five anadromous fish species in the Penobscot River, Maine, upstream from two existing dams and as a result of the proposed future removal of the dams. Potential depth-challenge zones were predicted for larger species at the lowest flow modeled in the dam-removal scenario. Increasing flows under both scenarios increased the number and size of potential velocity-challenge zones, especially for smaller species. This application of the two-dimensional CFD–HSI model demonstrated its capabilities to estimate the potential effects of flow and hydraulic alteration on the passage of migratory fish.

  19. Potential contribution of microbial communities in technical ceramics for the improvement of rheological properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreira, Bernardino; Miller, Ana Z.; Santos, Ricardo; Monteiro, Sílvia; Dias, Diamantino; Neves, Orquídia; Dionísio, Amélia; Saiz-Jimenez, Cesareo

    2014-05-01

    Several bacterial and fungal species naturally occurring in ceramic raw materials used in construction, such as Aspergillus, Penicillium and Aureobasidium, are known to produce exopolysaccharides (EPS). These polymers excreted by the cells are of widespread occurrence and may confer unique and potentially interesting properties with potential industrial uses, such as viscosity control, gelation, and flocculation, during ceramic manufacturing. In this study, the microbial communities present in clay raw materials were identified by both cultural methods and DNA-based molecular techniques in order to appraise their potential contribution to enhance the performance of technical ceramics through the use of EPS. Mineralogical identification by X- Ray Diffraction (XRD) and Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy of the clay raw materials, as well as characterization of rheological properties of ceramic slips were also performed. Microbial EPS production and its introduction into ceramic slips will be then carried out in order to evaluate their effects on the rheological properties of the ceramic slips, powders and conformed bodies. Some positive aspects related to the use of EPS are: reduction of the environmental impact caused by synthetic organic additives, reduction of production costs, as well as the costs related with operator protection systems, gaseous effluent treatments, complex landfill, among others.

  20. Evaluation of potential cost reductions from improved amine-based CO2 capture systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rao, Anand B.; Rubin, Edward S.; Keith, David W.; Granger Morgan, M.

    2006-01-01

    Technological innovations in CO 2 capture and storage technologies are being pursued worldwide under a variety of private and government-sponsored R and D programs. While much of this R and D is directed at novel concepts and potential breakthrough technologies, there are also substantial efforts to improve CO 2 capture technologies already in use. In this paper, we focus on amine-based CO 2 capture systems for power plants and other combustion-based applications. The current performance and cost of such systems have been documented in several recent studies. In this paper we examine the potential for future cost reductions that may result from continued process development. We used the formal methods of expert elicitation to understand what experts in this field believe about possible improvements in some of the key underlying parameters that govern the performance and cost of this technology. A dozen leading experts from North America, Europe and Asia participated in this study, providing their probabilistic judgments via a detailed questionnaire coupled with individual interviews. Judgments about detailed technical parameters were then used in an integrated power plant modeling framework (IECM-CS) developed for USDOE to evaluate the performance and costs of alternative carbon capture and sequestration technologies for fossil-fueled power plants. The experts' responses have allowed us to build a picture of how the overall performance and cost of amine-based systems might improve over the next decade or two. Results show how much the cost of CO 2 capture could be reduced via targeted R and D in key areas

  1. The efficiency improvement potential for coal, oil and electricity in China's manufacturing sectors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Ke; Lin, Boqiang

    2015-01-01

    This paper introduces an improved total-factor ESTR (energy-saving target ratio) index, which combines the sequence technique and the “energy direction” to a DEA (data envelopment analysis) model, in order to measure the possible energy saving potential of a manufacturing sector. Afterward, the energy saving potentials of four different energy carriers, namely coal, gasoline, diesel oil and electricity, for 27 manufacturing sectors during the period of 1998–2011 in China are calculated. The results and its policy implications are as follows: (1) the average ESTRs of coal, gasoline, diesel oil and electricity are 1.714%, 49.939%, 24.465% and 3.487% respectively. Hence, energy saving of manufacturing sectors should put more emphasis on gasoline and diesel oil. (2) The key sectors for gasoline saving is the energy-intensive sectors, while the key sectors for diesel oil saving is the equipment manufacturing sectors. (3) The manufacture of raw chemical materials and chemical products sector not only consumes a large amount of oil, but also has a low efficiency of oil usage. Therefore, it is the key sector for oil saving. (4) Manufacture of tobacco and manufacture of communication equipment, computers and other electronic equipment are the benchmark for the four major energy carriers of energy-saving ratios. - Highlights: • An improved total-factor energy-saving target ratio is proposed. • Energy saving potentials of energy carriers for sectors in 1998–2011 are calculated. • Policy implications for energy savings in sectors and energy carriers are discussed. • Some suggestions for the energy policies of China