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Sample records for models significantly improved

  1. Model training across multiple breeding cycles significantly improves genomic prediction accuracy in rye (Secale cereale L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auinger, Hans-Jürgen; Schönleben, Manfred; Lehermeier, Christina; Schmidt, Malthe; Korzun, Viktor; Geiger, Hartwig H; Piepho, Hans-Peter; Gordillo, Andres; Wilde, Peer; Bauer, Eva; Schön, Chris-Carolin

    2016-11-01

    Genomic prediction accuracy can be significantly increased by model calibration across multiple breeding cycles as long as selection cycles are connected by common ancestors. In hybrid rye breeding, application of genome-based prediction is expected to increase selection gain because of long selection cycles in population improvement and development of hybrid components. Essentially two prediction scenarios arise: (1) prediction of the genetic value of lines from the same breeding cycle in which model training is performed and (2) prediction of lines from subsequent cycles. It is the latter from which a reduction in cycle length and consequently the strongest impact on selection gain is expected. We empirically investigated genome-based prediction of grain yield, plant height and thousand kernel weight within and across four selection cycles of a hybrid rye breeding program. Prediction performance was assessed using genomic and pedigree-based best linear unbiased prediction (GBLUP and PBLUP). A total of 1040 S 2 lines were genotyped with 16 k SNPs and each year testcrosses of 260 S 2 lines were phenotyped in seven or eight locations. The performance gap between GBLUP and PBLUP increased significantly for all traits when model calibration was performed on aggregated data from several cycles. Prediction accuracies obtained from cross-validation were in the order of 0.70 for all traits when data from all cycles (N CS  = 832) were used for model training and exceeded within-cycle accuracies in all cases. As long as selection cycles are connected by a sufficient number of common ancestors and prediction accuracy has not reached a plateau when increasing sample size, aggregating data from several preceding cycles is recommended for predicting genetic values in subsequent cycles despite decreasing relatedness over time.

  2. Cyclosporin A significantly improves preeclampsia signs and suppresses inflammation in a rat model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Bihui; Yang, Jinying; Huang, Qian; Bao, Junjie; Brennecke, Shaun Patrick; Liu, Huishu

    2016-05-01

    Preeclampsia is associated with an increased inflammatory response. Immune suppression might be an effective treatment. The aim of this study was to examine whether Cyclosporin A (CsA), an immunosuppressant, improves clinical characteristics of preeclampsia and suppresses inflammation in a lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced preeclampsia rat model. Pregnant rats were randomly divided into 4 groups: group 1 (PE) rats each received LPS via tail vein on gestational day (GD) 14; group 2 (PE+CsA5) rats were pretreated with LPS (1.0 μg/kg) on GD 14 and were then treated with CsA (5mg/kg, ip) on GDs 16, 17 and 18; group 3 (PE+CsA10) rats were pretreated with LPS (1.0 μg/kg) on GD 14 and were then treated with CsA (10mg/kg, ip) on GDs 16, 17 and 18; group 4 (pregnant control, PC) rats were treated with the vehicle (saline) used for groups 1, 2 and 3. Systolic blood pressure, urinary albumin, biometric parameters and the levels of serum cytokines were measured on day 20. CsA treatment significantly reduced LPS-induced systolic blood pressure and the mean 24-h urinary albumin excretion. Pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-6, IL-17, IFN-γ and TNF-α were increased in the LPS treatment group but were reduced in (LPS+CsA) group (Ppreeclampsia signs and attenuated inflammatory responses in the LPS induced preeclampsia rat model which suggests that immunosuppressant might be an alternative management option for preeclampsia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Improving winter leaf area index estimation in evergreen coniferous forests and its significance in carbon and water fluxes modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, R.; Chen, J. M.; Luo, X.

    2016-12-01

    Modeling of carbon and water fluxes at the continental and global scales requires remotely sensed LAI as inputs. For evergreen coniferous forests (ENF), severely underestimated winter LAI has been one of the issues for mostly available remote sensing products, which could cause negative bias in the modeling of Gross Primary Productivity (GPP) and evapotranspiration (ET). Unlike deciduous trees which shed all the leaves in winter, conifers retains part of their needles and the proportion of the retained needles depends on the needle longevity. In this work, the Boreal Ecosystem Productivity Simulator (BEPS) was used to model GPP and ET at eight FLUXNET Canada ENF sites. Two sets of LAI were used as the model inputs: the 250m 10-day University of Toronto (U of T) LAI product Version 2 and the corrected LAI based on the U of T LAI product and the needle longevity of the corresponding tree species at individual sites. Validating model daily GPP (gC/m2) against site measurements, the mean RMSE over eight sites decreases from 1.85 to 1.15, and the bias changes from -0.99 to -0.19. For daily ET (mm), mean RMSE decreases from 0.63 to 0.33, and the bias changes from -0.31 to -0.16. Most of the improvements occur in the beginning and at the end of the growing season when there is large correction of LAI and meanwhile temperature is still suitable for photosynthesis and transpiration. For the dormant season, the improvement in ET simulation mostly comes from the increased interception of precipitation brought by the elevated LAI during that time. The results indicate that model performance can be improved by the application the corrected LAI. Improving the winter RS LAI can make a large impact on land surface carbon and energy budget.

  4. Significant improvement of electrochemical performance of Cu ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Significant improvement of electrochemical performance of Cu-coated LiVPO4F cathode material for lithium-ion batteries ... School of Mechanical Engineering and Automation, Northeastern University, Shenyang 110819, China; School of Mechanical Engineering, Shenyang University of Chemical Technology, Shenyang ...

  5. Systemic antibiotic therapy does not significantly improve outcome in a rat model of implant-associated osteomyelitis induced by Methicillin susceptible Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fölsch, Christian; Federmann, Maike; Lakemeier, Stefan; Kuehn, Klaus D; Kittinger, Clemens; Kerwat, Martina; Fuchs-Winkelmann, Susanne; Paletta, Jürgen R J; Roessler, Philip P

    2016-04-01

    Treatment of implant-associated osteomyelitis regularly involves the use of systemic antibiotics in addition to surgical intervention. However, it remains unclear if perioperative systemic application of bactericide substances can improve overall outcome in models of severe intramedullary infection. The present study investigated the use of systemic gentamicin in addition to a controlled local release from a highly lipophilic gentamicinpalmitate compound while the previous study showed efficacy of sole antibiotic implant-coating. Forty male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into two groups receiving an intramedullary femoral injection of 10(2) CFU of a common methicillin susceptible Staphylococcus aureus strain (MSSA Rosenbach). Group I received an uncoated implant whereas group II received a coated implant. All animals received a single shot intraperitoneal application of gentamicinsulfate directly after wound closure while the historical control group III (n = 20) had no antibiotic treatment at all. Animals were observed for 28 and 42 days. Serum haptoglobin and relative weight gain were assessed as well as roll over cultures of explanted femur nails and histological scores of periprosthetic infection in dissected femora. Systemic application of gentamicin combined with antibiotic-coated implant did not further reduce bacterial growth significantly compared with systemic or local antibiotic application alone. Combined local and systemic therapy reduced serum haptoglobin significantly after day 7, 28 and 42 whereas systemic application alone did not compare to controls. Systemic perioperative and implant-associated application of antibiotics were both comparably effective to treat implant-associated infections whereas the combined antibiotic therapy further reduced systemic signs of infection time dependent.

  6. Gemtuzumab Ozogamicin (GO Inclusion to Induction Chemotherapy Eliminates Leukemic Initiating Cells and Significantly Improves Survival in Mouse Models of Acute Myeloid Leukemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cathy C Zhang

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Gemtuzumab ozogamicin (GO is an anti-CD33 antibody-drug conjugate for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML. Although GO shows a narrow therapeutic window in early clinical studies, recent reports detailing a modified dosing regimen of GO can be safely combined with induction chemotherapy, and the combination provides significant survival benefits in AML patients. Here we tested whether the survival benefits seen with the combination arise from the enhanced reduction of chemoresidual disease and leukemic initiating cells (LICs. Herein, we use cell line and patient-derived xenograft (PDX AML models to evaluate the combination of GO with daunorubicin and cytarabine (DA induction chemotherapy on AML blast growth and animal survival. DA chemotherapy and GO as separate treatments reduced AML burden but left significant chemoresidual disease in multiple AML models. The combination of GO and DA chemotherapy eliminated nearly all AML burden and extended overall survival. In two small subsets of AML models, chemoresidual disease following DA chemotherapy displayed hallmark markers of leukemic LICs (CLL1 and CD34. In vivo, the two chemoresistant subpopulations (CLL1+/CD117− and CD34+/CD38+ showed higher ability to self-renewal than their counterpart subpopulations, respectively. CD33 was coexpressed in these functional LIC subpopulations. We demonstrate that the GO and DA induction chemotherapy combination more effectively eliminates LICs in AML PDX models than either single agent alone. These data suggest that the survival benefit seen by the combination of GO and induction chemotherapy, nonclinically and clinically, may be attributed to the enhanced reduction of LICs.

  7. The anti-tumor effect of HDAC inhibition in a human pancreas cancer model is significantly improved by the simultaneous inhibition of cyclooxygenase 2.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Peulen

    Full Text Available Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma is the fourth leading cause of cancer death worldwide, with no satisfactory treatment to date. In this study, we tested whether the combined inhibition of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2 and class I histone deacetylase (HDAC may results in a better control of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. The impact of the concomitant HDAC and COX-2 inhibition on cell growth, apoptosis and cell cycle was assessed first in vitro on human pancreas BxPC-3, PANC-1 or CFPAC-1 cells treated with chemical inhibitors (SAHA, MS-275 and celecoxib or HDAC1/2/3/7 siRNA. To test the potential antitumoral activity of this combination in vivo, we have developed and characterized, a refined chick chorioallantoic membrane tumor model that histologically and proteomically mimics human pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. The combination of HDAC1/3 and COX-2 inhibition significantly impaired proliferation of BxPC-3 cells in vitro and stalled entirely the BxPC-3 cells tumor growth onto the chorioallantoic membrane in vivo. The combination was more effective than either drug used alone. Consistently, we showed that both HDAC1 and HDAC3 inhibition induced the expression of COX-2 via the NF-kB pathway. Our data demonstrate, for the first time in a Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma (PDAC model, a significant action of HDAC and COX-2 inhibitors on cancer cell growth, which sets the basis for the development of potentially effective new combinatory therapies for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma patients.

  8. Modelling vocal anatomy's significant effect on speech

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Boer, B.

    2010-01-01

    This paper investigates the effect of larynx position on the articulatory abilities of a humanlike vocal tract. Previous work has investigated models that were built to resemble the anatomy of existing species or fossil ancestors. This has led to conflicting conclusions about the relation between

  9. Frameworks for improvement: clinical audit, the plan-do-study-act cycle and significant event audit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillam, Steve; Siriwardena, A Niroshan

    2013-01-01

    This is the first in a series of articles about quality improvement tools and techniques. We explore common frameworks for improvement, including the model for improvement and its application to clinical audit, plan-do-study-act (PDSA) cycles and significant event analysis (SEA), examining the similarities and differences between these and providing examples of each.

  10. Significant improvement in the pore properties of SBA-15 brought ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    WINTEC

    Presence of carboxylic acids as well as hydrothermal treatment improves the pore properties of SBA-15. Keywords. SBA-15; mesoporous; carboxylic acids; adsorption; hydrothermal treatment; morphology. 1. Introduction. Molecular sieves with large pores have been of great use in carrying out reactions and separation proc-.

  11. Creating a Middle Grades Environment that Significantly Improves Student Achievement

    Science.gov (United States)

    L'Esperance, Mark E.; Lenker, Ethan; Bullock, Ann; Lockamy, Becky; Mason, Cathy

    2013-01-01

    This article offers an overview of the framework that Sampson County Public Schools (North Carolina) used to critically reflect on the current state of their middle grades schools. The article also highlights the changes that resulted from the district-wide analysis and the ways in which these changes led to a significant increase in the academic…

  12. Areva 2007 results: accelerated growth and significantly improved profitability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2008-02-01

    The AREVA group recorded accelerated growth and increased profitability in 2007, meeting both of its objectives for the year. The group made strategic inroads in fast growing markets. AREVA's integrated model met with record success in China, where GGNPC acquired two EPR nuclear islands in a combined order including both the reactors and the fuel, and the creation of a joint venture in engineering. Its T and D division was awarded the largest contract of its history in Qatar, making it the leader in a region where T and D was not even present a few years ago. For more than three years, AREVA has built up its capacity to meet surging demand in the nuclear power and T and D markets through an active policy of research and development and by capitalizing on the diversity and strength of its partnerships. Areva hired 8,600 people in 2006 and 11,500 people in 2007; this represents an investment in recruitment, training and integration of approximately euro 200 million per year. For 2008, the group foresees a further increase in its backlog, sales revenue and operating income. The Areva Group financial statements for 2007 are summarized below: - Backlog: euro 39.8 billion, up 55%; - Sales revenue: euro 11.9 billion, up 9.8% (up 10.4% like-for-like); - Operating income: euro 751 million, i.e. 6.3% operating margin, up 2.6 points compared with 2006; - Net income attributable to equity holders of the parent: euro 743 million (euro 20.95 per share), up from euro 649 million in 2006 (euro 18.31 per share); - Net debt: euro 1.954 billion, linked to the acquisition of UraMin; - Dividend: euro 6.77, to be proposed to the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders convening on April 17, 2008

  13. Measuring outcomes in outpatient child psychiatry: reliable improvement, deterioration, and clinically significant improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, J Michael; Blais, Mark; Baer, Lee; McCarthy, Alyssa; Kamin, Hayley; Masek, Bruce; Jellinek, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Given the increasing interest in demonstrating effectiveness in psychiatric treatment, the current paper seeks to advance outcome measurement in child psychiatry by demonstrating how more informative analytic strategies can be used to evaluate treatment in a real world setting using a brief, standardized parent-report measure. Questionnaires were obtained at intake for 1294 patients. Of these, 695 patients entered treatment and 531 (74%) had complete forms at intake and follow-up. Using this sample, we analyzed the data to determine effect sizes, rates of reliable improvement and deterioration, and rates of clinically significant improvement. Findings highlighted the utility of these approaches for evaluating treatment outcomes. Further suggestions for improving outcome measurement and evaluation are provided. © The Author(s) 2013.

  14. Recent improvements in CRACUK modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Egan, M.J.; Nixon, W.

    1986-08-01

    The CRACUK computer code is a revised version of the US consequence modelling code CRAC2, adapted to suit UK applications. This report describes in detail the modifications to the dosimetric models contained within the code, and assesses their influence upon the predicted consequences of postulated atmospheric releases following severe light water and fast reactor accidents. The impact for such source terms is not marked, when compared with existing uncertainty bands, although, for the fast reactor case, the distribution of predicted cancers among the different types is significantly affected. Nevertheless, the improvements lend confidence to the use of CRACUK for the assessment of accidents for a wider range of nuclear plant. (author)

  15. Bayesian Test of Significance for Conditional Independence: The Multinomial Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pablo de Morais Andrade

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Conditional independence tests have received special attention lately in machine learning and computational intelligence related literature as an important indicator of the relationship among the variables used by their models. In the field of probabilistic graphical models, which includes Bayesian network models, conditional independence tests are especially important for the task of learning the probabilistic graphical model structure from data. In this paper, we propose the full Bayesian significance test for tests of conditional independence for discrete datasets. The full Bayesian significance test is a powerful Bayesian test for precise hypothesis, as an alternative to the frequentist’s significance tests (characterized by the calculation of the p-value.

  16. Nicotine Significantly Improves Chronic Stress-Induced Impairments of Cognition and Synaptic Plasticity in Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Xueliang; Shang, Yingchun; Fu, Jingxuan; Zhang, Tao

    2017-08-01

    The aim of this study was to examine if nicotine was able to improve cognition deficits in a mouse model of chronic mild stress. Twenty-four male C57BL/6 mice were divided into three groups: control, stress, and stress with nicotine treatment. The animal model was established by combining chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) and isolated feeding. Mice were exposed to CUMS continued for 28 days, while nicotine (0.2 mg/kg) was also administrated for 28 days. Weight and sucrose consumption were measured during model establishing period. The anxiety and behavioral despair were analyzed using the forced swim test (FST) and open-field test (OFT). Spatial cognition was evaluated using Morris water maze (MWM) test. Following behavioral assessment, both long-term potentiation (LTP) and depotentiation (DEP) were recorded in the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG) region. Both synaptic and Notch1 proteins were measured by Western. Nicotine increased stressed mouse's sucrose consumption. The MWM test showed that spatial learning and reversal learning in stressed animals were remarkably affected relative to controls, whereas nicotine partially rescued cognitive functions. Additionally, nicotine considerably alleviated the level of anxiety and the degree of behavioral despair in stressed mice. It effectively mitigated the depression-induced impairment of hippocampal synaptic plasticity, in which both the LTP and DEP were significantly inhibited in stressed mice. Moreover, nicotine enhanced the expression of synaptic and Notch1 proteins in stressed animals. The results suggest that nicotine ameliorates the depression-like symptoms and improves the hippocampal synaptic plasticity closely associated with activating transmembrane ion channel receptors and Notch signaling components. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  17. Improving practical atmospheric dispersion models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hunt, J.C.R.; Hudson, B.; Thomson, D.J.

    1992-01-01

    The new generation of practical atmospheric dispersion model (for short range ≤ 30 km) are based on dispersion science and boundary layer meteorology which have widespread international acceptance. In addition, recent improvements in computer skills and the widespread availability of small powerful computers make it possible to have new regulatory models which are more complex than the previous generation which were based on charts and simple formulae. This paper describes the basis of these models and how they have developed. Such models are needed to satisfy the urgent public demand for sound, justifiable and consistent environmental decisions. For example, it is preferable that the same models are used to simulate dispersion in different industries; in many countries at present different models are used for emissions from nuclear and fossil fuel power stations. The models should not be so simple as to be suspect but neither should they be too complex for widespread use; for example, at public inquiries in Germany, where simple models are mandatory, it is becoming usual to cite the results from highly complex computational models because the simple models are not credible. This paper is written in a schematic style with an emphasis on tables and diagrams. (au) (22 refs.)

  18. Using the Significant Learning Taxonomy and Active Learning to Improve Accounting Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Killian, Larita J.; Brandon, Christopher D.

    2009-01-01

    Like other members of the academy, accounting professors are challenged to improve student learning. We must help students move beyond the "bean counter" role and develop higher-level skills such as analysis, synthesis, and problem-solving. The Significant Learning Taxonomy was used as a template to improve learning in an introductory accounting…

  19. Improvements in ECN Wake Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Versteeg, M.C. [University of Twente, Enschede (Netherlands); Ozdemir, H.; Brand, A.J. [ECN Wind Energy, Petten (Netherlands)

    2013-08-15

    Wind turbines extract energy from the flow field so that the flow in the wake of a wind turbine contains less energy and more turbulence than the undisturbed flow, leading to less energy extraction for the downstream turbines. In large wind farms, most turbines are located in the wake of one or more turbines causing the flow characteristics felt by these turbines differ considerably from the free stream flow conditions. The most important wake effect is generally considered to be the lower wind speed behind the turbine(s) since this decreases the energy production and as such the economical performance of a wind farm. The overall loss of a wind farm is very much dependent on the conditions and the lay-out of the farm but it can be in the order of 5-10%. Apart from the loss in energy production an additional wake effect is formed by the increase in turbulence intensity, which leads to higher fatigue loads. In this sense it becomes important to understand the details of wake behavior to improve and/or optimize a wind farm layout. Within this study improvements are presented for the existing ECN wake model which constructs the fundamental basis of ECN's FarmFlow wind farm wake simulation tool. The outline of this paper is as follows: first, the governing equations of the ECN wake farm model are presented. Then the near wake modeling is discussed and the results compared with the original near wake modeling and EWTW (ECN Wind Turbine Test Site Wieringermeer) data as well as the results obtained for various near wake implementation cases are shown. The details of the atmospheric stability model are given and the comparison with the solution obtained for the original surface layer model and with the available data obtained by EWTW measurements are presented. Finally the conclusions are summarized.

  20. Multiresolution wavelet-ANN model for significant wave height forecasting.

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Deka, P.C.; Mandal, S.; Prahlada, R.

    (ANN) modeling. The transformed output data are used as inputs to ANN models. Various decomposition levels have been tried for a db3 wavelet to obtain optimal results. It is found that the performance of hybrid WLNN is better than that of ANN when lead...

  1. Mapping Soil Properties of Africa at 250 m Resolution: Random Forests Significantly Improve Current Predictions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hengl, Tomislav; Heuvelink, Gerard B. M.; Kempen, Bas; Leenaars, Johan G. B.; Walsh, Markus G.; Shepherd, Keith D.; Sila, Andrew; MacMillan, Robert A.; Mendes de Jesus, Jorge; Tamene, Lulseged; Tondoh, Jérôme E.

    2015-01-01

    80% of arable land in Africa has low soil fertility and suffers from physical soil problems. Additionally, significant amounts of nutrients are lost every year due to unsustainable soil management practices. This is partially the result of insufficient use of soil management knowledge. To help bridge the soil information gap in Africa, the Africa Soil Information Service (AfSIS) project was established in 2008. Over the period 2008–2014, the AfSIS project compiled two point data sets: the Africa Soil Profiles (legacy) database and the AfSIS Sentinel Site database. These data sets contain over 28 thousand sampling locations and represent the most comprehensive soil sample data sets of the African continent to date. Utilizing these point data sets in combination with a large number of covariates, we have generated a series of spatial predictions of soil properties relevant to the agricultural management—organic carbon, pH, sand, silt and clay fractions, bulk density, cation-exchange capacity, total nitrogen, exchangeable acidity, Al content and exchangeable bases (Ca, K, Mg, Na). We specifically investigate differences between two predictive approaches: random forests and linear regression. Results of 5-fold cross-validation demonstrate that the random forests algorithm consistently outperforms the linear regression algorithm, with average decreases of 15–75% in Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE) across soil properties and depths. Fitting and running random forests models takes an order of magnitude more time and the modelling success is sensitive to artifacts in the input data, but as long as quality-controlled point data are provided, an increase in soil mapping accuracy can be expected. Results also indicate that globally predicted soil classes (USDA Soil Taxonomy, especially Alfisols and Mollisols) help improve continental scale soil property mapping, and are among the most important predictors. This indicates a promising potential for transferring pedological

  2. Mapping Soil Properties of Africa at 250 m Resolution: Random Forests Significantly Improve Current Predictions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hengl, Tomislav; Heuvelink, Gerard B M; Kempen, Bas; Leenaars, Johan G B; Walsh, Markus G; Shepherd, Keith D; Sila, Andrew; MacMillan, Robert A; Mendes de Jesus, Jorge; Tamene, Lulseged; Tondoh, Jérôme E

    2015-01-01

    80% of arable land in Africa has low soil fertility and suffers from physical soil problems. Additionally, significant amounts of nutrients are lost every year due to unsustainable soil management practices. This is partially the result of insufficient use of soil management knowledge. To help bridge the soil information gap in Africa, the Africa Soil Information Service (AfSIS) project was established in 2008. Over the period 2008-2014, the AfSIS project compiled two point data sets: the Africa Soil Profiles (legacy) database and the AfSIS Sentinel Site database. These data sets contain over 28 thousand sampling locations and represent the most comprehensive soil sample data sets of the African continent to date. Utilizing these point data sets in combination with a large number of covariates, we have generated a series of spatial predictions of soil properties relevant to the agricultural management--organic carbon, pH, sand, silt and clay fractions, bulk density, cation-exchange capacity, total nitrogen, exchangeable acidity, Al content and exchangeable bases (Ca, K, Mg, Na). We specifically investigate differences between two predictive approaches: random forests and linear regression. Results of 5-fold cross-validation demonstrate that the random forests algorithm consistently outperforms the linear regression algorithm, with average decreases of 15-75% in Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE) across soil properties and depths. Fitting and running random forests models takes an order of magnitude more time and the modelling success is sensitive to artifacts in the input data, but as long as quality-controlled point data are provided, an increase in soil mapping accuracy can be expected. Results also indicate that globally predicted soil classes (USDA Soil Taxonomy, especially Alfisols and Mollisols) help improve continental scale soil property mapping, and are among the most important predictors. This indicates a promising potential for transferring pedological

  3. Neuro-Linguistic Programming: Improving Rapport between Track/Cross Country Coaches and Significant Others

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helm, David Jay

    2017-01-01

    This study examines the background information and the components of N.L.P., being eye movements, use of predicates, and posturing, as they apply to improving rapport and empathy between track/cross country coaches and their significant others in the arena of competition to help alleviate the inherent stressors.

  4. Histone deacetylase inhibitor significantly improved the cloning efficiency of porcine somatic cell nuclear transfer embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yongye; Tang, Xiaochun; Xie, Wanhua; Zhou, Yan; Li, Dong; Yao, Chaogang; Zhou, Yang; Zhu, Jianguo; Lai, Liangxue; Ouyang, Hongsheng; Pang, Daxin

    2011-12-01

    Valproic acid (VPA), a histone deacetylase inbibitor, has been shown to generate inducible pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from mouse and human fibroblasts with a significant higher efficiency. Because successful cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) undergoes a full reprogramming process in which the epigenetic state of a differentiated donor nuclear is converted into an embryonic totipotent state, we speculated that VPA would be useful in promoting cloning efficiency. Therefore, in the present study, we examined whether VPA can promote the developmental competence of SCNT embryos by improving the reprogramming state of donor nucleus. Here we report that 1 mM VPA for 14 to 16 h following activation significantly increased the rate of blastocyst formation of porcine SCNT embryos constructed from Landrace fetal fibroblast cells compared to the control (31.8 vs. 11.4%). However, we found that the acetylation level of Histone H3 lysine 14 and Histone H4 lysine 5 and expression level of Oct4, Sox2, and Klf4 was not significantly changed between VPA-treated and -untreated groups at the blastocyst stage. The SCNT embryos were transferred to 38 surrogates, and the cloning efficiency in the treated group was significantly improved compared with the control group. Taken together, we have demonstrated that VPA can improve both in vitro and in vivo development competence of porcine SCNT embryos.

  5. Parameter definition using vibration prediction software leads to significant drilling performance improvements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Amorim, Dalmo; Hanley, Chris Hanley; Fonseca, Isaac; Santos, Juliana [National Oilwell Varco, Houston TX (United States); Leite, Daltro J.; Borella, Augusto; Gozzi, Danilo [Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (PETROBRAS), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2012-07-01

    The understanding and mitigation of downhole vibration has been a heavily researched subject in the oil industry as it results in more expensive drilling operations, as vibrations significantly diminish the amount of effective drilling energy available to the bit and generate forces that can push the bit or the Bottom Hole Assembly (BHA) off its concentric axis of rotation, producing high magnitude impacts with the borehole wall. In order to drill ahead, a sufficient amount of energy must be supplied by the rig to overcome the resistance of the drilling system, including the reactive torque of the system, drag forces, fluid pressure losses and energy dissipated by downhole vibrations, then providing the bit with the energy required to fail the rock. If the drill string enters resonant modes of vibration, not only does it decreases the amount of available energy to drill, but increases the potential for catastrophic downhole equipment and drilling bit failures. In this sense, the mitigation of downhole vibrations will result in faster, smoother, and cheaper drilling operations. A software tool using Finite Element Analysis (FEA) has been developed to provide better understanding of downhole vibration phenomena in drilling environments. The software tool calculates the response of the drilling system at various input conditions, based on the design of the wellbore along with the geometry of the Bottom Hole Assembly (BHA) and the drill string. It identifies where undesired levels of resonant vibration will be driven by certain combinations of specific drilling parameters, and also which combinations of drilling parameters will result in lower levels of vibration, so the least shocks, the highest penetration rate and the lowest cost per foot can be achieved. With the growing performance of personal computers, complex software systems modeling the drilling vibrations using FEA has been accessible to a wider audience of field users, further complimenting with real time

  6. Communication: Proper treatment of classically forbidden electronic transitions significantly improves detailed balance in surface hopping

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sifain, Andrew E. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089-0485 (United States); Wang, Linjun [Department of Chemistry, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310027 (China); Prezhdo, Oleg V. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089-0485 (United States); Department of Chemistry, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089-1062 (United States)

    2016-06-07

    Surface hopping is the most popular method for nonadiabatic molecular dynamics. Many have reported that it does not rigorously attain detailed balance at thermal equilibrium, but does so approximately. We show that convergence to the Boltzmann populations is significantly improved when the nuclear velocity is reversed after a classically forbidden hop. The proposed prescription significantly reduces the total number of classically forbidden hops encountered along a trajectory, suggesting that some randomization in nuclear velocity is needed when classically forbidden hops constitute a large fraction of attempted hops. Our results are verified computationally using two- and three-level quantum subsystems, coupled to a classical bath undergoing Langevin dynamics.

  7. School-Based Educational Interventions Can Significantly Improve Health Outcomes in Children with Asthma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suwannakeeree, Pussayaban; Deerojanawong, Jitladda; Prapphal, Nuanchan

    2016-02-01

    Lack of asthma knowledge among the pediatric patients and their caregivers contribute to poor asthma control in children. There is no data from Thailand on the health outcomes of school-based educational interventions for asthmatic children. To assess the effectiveness of school-based asthma educational interventions on health outcomes, asthma control, and management in asthmatic children. Forty-seven asthmatic students (6-15 years old), 14 caregivers, and five teachers from the Homkred School participated in the study. Asthma knowledge, workshops on pMDI (pressurized metered dose inhaler) techniques, use of asthma diaries, and self-management plans were provided Pre- and post-tests were administered to assess the asthma knowledge of the asthmatic students, their caregivers, and teachers. Pulmonary function tests (PFT) were used to assess the health outcomes. The controls of asthma and self-management behaviors were assessed at three and six months post-intervention. There were significant improvements of asthma knowledge in all groups (p management behaviors in the asthmatic children improved. The teachers' management of asthmatic attacks during the classes also improved. As a result of this, there were fewer emergency room (ER) visits. School-based educational interventions can significantly improve asthma outcomes in children with asthma. Therefore, the authors highly recommend the use of this intervention.

  8. The challenges of ESRD care in developing economies: sub-Saharan African opportunities for significant improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamgboye, Ebun Ladipo

    Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in sub-Saharan Africa. This, along with other noncommunicable diseases like hypertension, diabetes, and heart diseases, poses a double burden on a region that is still struggling to cope with the scourge of communicable diseases like malaria, tuberculosis, HIV, and more recently Ebola. Causes of CKD in the region are predominantly glomerulonephritis and hypertension, although type 2 diabetes is also becoming a significant cause as is the retroviral disease. Patients are generally younger than in the developed world, and there is a significant male preponderance. Most patients are managed by hemodialysis, with peritoneal dialysis and kidney transplantation being available in only few countries in the region. Government funding and support for dialysis is often unavailable, and when available, often with restrictions. There is a dearth of trained manpower to treat the disease, and many countries have a limited number of units, which are often ill-equipped to deal adequately with the number of patients who require end-stage renal disease (ESRD) care in the region. Although there has been a significant improvement when compared with the situation, even as recently as 10 years ago, there is also the potential for further improvement, which would significantly improve the outcomes in patients with ESRD in the region. The information in this review was obtained from a combination of renal registry reports (published and unpublished), published articles, responses to a questionnaire sent to nephrologists prior to the World Congress of Nephrology (WCN) in Cape Town, and from nephrologists attending the WCN in Cape Town (March 13 - 17, 2015).

  9. Improved transition models for cepstral trajectories

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Badenhorst, J

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available is ideal for the investigation of contextual effects on cepstral trajectories. We show that modelling improvements, such as continuity constraints on parameter values and more flexible transition models, systematically improve the robustness of our...

  10. PXD101 significantly improves nuclear reprogramming and the in vitro developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, Jun-Xue; Kang, Jin-Dan; Li, Suo; Jin, Long; Zhu, Hai-Ying; Guo, Qing; Gao, Qing-Shan; Yan, Chang-Guo; Yin, Xi-Jun, E-mail: yinxj33@msn.com

    2015-01-02

    Highlights: • First explored that the effects of PXD101 on the development of SCNT embryos in vitro. • 0.5 μM PXD101 treated for 24 h improved the development of porcine SCNT embryos. • Level of AcH3K9 was significantly higher than control group at early stages. - Abstract: In this study, we investigated the effects of the histone deacetylase inhibitor PXD101 (belinostat) on the preimplantation development of porcine somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos and their expression of the epigenetic markers histone H3 acetylated at lysine 9 (AcH3K9). We compared the in vitro developmental competence of SCNT embryos treated with various concentrations of PXD101 for 24 h. Treatment with 0.5 μM PXD101 significantly increased the proportion of SCNT embryos that reached the blastocyst stage, in comparison to the control group (23.3% vs. 11.5%, P < 0.05). We tested the in vitro developmental competence of SCNT embryos treated with 0.5 μM PXD101 for various amounts of times following activation. Treatment for 24 h significantly improved the development of porcine SCNT embryos, with a significantly higher proportion of embryos reaching the blastocyst stage in comparison to the control group (25.7% vs. 10.6%, P < 0.05). PXD101-treated SCNT embryos were transferred into two surrogate sows, one of whom became pregnant and four fetuses developed. PXD101 treatment significantly increased the fluorescence intensity of immunostaining for AcH3K9 in embryos at the pseudo-pronuclear and 2-cell stages. At these stages, the fluorescence intensities of immunostaining for AcH3K9 were significantly higher in PXD101-treated embryos than in control untreated embryos. In conclusion, this study demonstrates that PXD101 can significantly improve the in vitro and in vivo developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos and can enhance their nuclear reprogramming.

  11. Unified Health Gamification can significantly improve well-being in corporate environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahrestani, Arash; Van Gorp, Pieter; Le Blanc, Pascale; Greidanus, Fabrizio; de Groot, Kristel; Leermakers, Jelle

    2017-07-01

    There is a multitude of mHealth applications that aim to solve societal health problems by stimulating specific types of physical activities via gamification. However, physical health activities cover just one of the three World Health Organization (WHO) dimensions of health. This paper introduces the novel notion of Unified Health Gamification (UHG), which covers besides physical health also social and cognitive health and well-being. Instead of rewarding activities in the three WHO dimensions using different mHealth competitions, UHG combines the scores for such activities on unified leaderboards and lets people interact in social circles beyond personal interests. This approach is promising in corporate environments since UHG can connect the employees with intrinsic motivation for physical health with those who have quite different interests. In order to evaluate this approach, we realized an app prototype and we evaluated it in two corporate pilot studies. In total, eighteen pilot users participated voluntarily for six weeks. Half of the participants were recruited from an occupational health setting and the other half from a treatment setting. Our results suggest that the UHG principles are worth more investigation: various positive health effects were found based on a validated survey. The mean mental health improved significantly at one pilot location and at the level of individual pilot participants, multiple other effects were found to be significant: among others, significant mental health improvements were found for 28% of the participants. Most participants intended to use the app beyond the pilot, especially if it would be further developed.

  12. A peptide-retrieval strategy enables significant improvement of quantitative performance without compromising confidence of identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tu, Chengjian; Shen, Shichen; Sheng, Quanhu; Shyr, Yu; Qu, Jun

    2017-01-30

    Reliable quantification of low-abundance proteins in complex proteomes is challenging largely owing to the limited number of spectra/peptides identified. In this study we developed a straightforward method to improve the quantitative accuracy and precision of proteins by strategically retrieving the less confident peptides that were previously filtered out using the standard target-decoy search strategy. The filtered-out MS/MS spectra matched to confidently-identified proteins were recovered, and the peptide-spectrum-match FDR were re-calculated and controlled at a confident level of FDR≤1%, while protein FDR maintained at ~1%. We evaluated the performance of this strategy in both spectral count- and ion current-based methods. >60% increase of total quantified spectra/peptides was respectively achieved for analyzing a spike-in sample set and a public dataset from CPTAC. Incorporating the peptide retrieval strategy significantly improved the quantitative accuracy and precision, especially for low-abundance proteins (e.g. one-hit proteins). Moreover, the capacity of confidently discovering significantly-altered proteins was also enhanced substantially, as demonstrated with two spike-in datasets. In summary, improved quantitative performance was achieved by this peptide recovery strategy without compromising confidence of protein identification, which can be readily implemented in a broad range of quantitative proteomics techniques including label-free or labeling approaches. We hypothesize that more quantifiable spectra and peptides in a protein, even including less confident peptides, could help reduce variations and improve protein quantification. Hence the peptide retrieval strategy was developed and evaluated in two spike-in sample sets with different LC-MS/MS variations using both MS1- and MS2-based quantitative approach. The list of confidently identified proteins using the standard target-decoy search strategy was fixed and more spectra/peptides with less

  13. Application of Improved Radiation Modeling to General Circulation Models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Michael J Iacono

    2011-04-07

    This research has accomplished its primary objectives of developing accurate and efficient radiation codes, validating them with measurements and higher resolution models, and providing these advancements to the global modeling community to enhance the treatment of cloud and radiative processes in weather and climate prediction models. A critical component of this research has been the development of the longwave and shortwave broadband radiative transfer code for general circulation model (GCM) applications, RRTMG, which is based on the single-column reference code, RRTM, also developed at AER. RRTMG is a rigorously tested radiation model that retains a considerable level of accuracy relative to higher resolution models and measurements despite the performance enhancements that have made it possible to apply this radiation code successfully to global dynamical models. This model includes the radiative effects of all significant atmospheric gases, and it treats the absorption and scattering from liquid and ice clouds and aerosols. RRTMG also includes a statistical technique for representing small-scale cloud variability, such as cloud fraction and the vertical overlap of clouds, which has been shown to improve cloud radiative forcing in global models. This development approach has provided a direct link from observations to the enhanced radiative transfer provided by RRTMG for application to GCMs. Recent comparison of existing climate model radiation codes with high resolution models has documented the improved radiative forcing capability provided by RRTMG, especially at the surface, relative to other GCM radiation models. Due to its high accuracy, its connection to observations, and its computational efficiency, RRTMG has been implemented operationally in many national and international dynamical models to provide validated radiative transfer for improving weather forecasts and enhancing the prediction of global climate change.

  14. Thermosensitive Hydrogel Mask Significantly Improves Skin Moisture and Skin Tone; Bilateral Clinical Trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Quattrone

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective: A temperature-sensitive state-changing hydrogel mask was used in this study. Once it comes into contact with the skin and reaches the body temperature, it uniformly and quickly releases the active compounds, which possess moisturizing, anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and regenerative properties. Methods: An open label clinical trial was conducted to evaluate the effects of the test product on skin hydration, skin tone and skin ageing. Subjects applied the product to one side of their face and underwent Corneometer® and Chromameter measurements, Visual assessment of facial skin ageing and facial photography. All assessments and Self-Perception Questionnaires (SPQ were performed at baseline, after the first application of the test product and after four applications. Results: After a single treatment we observed an increase in skin moisturisation, an improvement of skin tone/luminosity and a reduction in signs of ageing, all statistically significant. After four applications a further improvement in all measured parameters was recorded. These results were confirmed by the subjects’ own perceptions, as reported in the SPQ both after one and four applications. Conclusion: The hydrogel mask tested in this study is very effective in improving skin hydration, skin radiance and luminosity, in encouraging an even skin tone and in reducing skin pigmentation.

  15. E2F5 status significantly improves malignancy diagnosis of epithelial ovarian cancer

    KAUST Repository

    Kothandaraman, Narasimhan

    2010-02-24

    Background: Ovarian epithelial cancer (OEC) usually presents in the later stages of the disease. Factors, especially those associated with cell-cycle genes, affecting the genesis and tumour progression for ovarian cancer are largely unknown. We hypothesized that over-expressed transcription factors (TFs), as well as those that are driving the expression of the OEC over-expressed genes, could be the key for OEC genesis and potentially useful tissue and serum markers for malignancy associated with OEC.Methods: Using a combination of computational (selection of candidate TF markers and malignancy prediction) and experimental approaches (tissue microarray and western blotting on patient samples) we identified and evaluated E2F5 transcription factor involved in cell proliferation, as a promising candidate regulatory target in early stage disease. Our hypothesis was supported by our tissue array experiments that showed E2F5 expression only in OEC samples but not in normal and benign tissues, and by significantly positively biased expression in serum samples done using western blotting studies.Results: Analysis of clinical cases shows that of the E2F5 status is characteristic for a different population group than one covered by CA125, a conventional OEC biomarker. E2F5 used in different combinations with CA125 for distinguishing malignant cyst from benign cyst shows that the presence of CA125 or E2F5 increases sensitivity of OEC detection to 97.9% (an increase from 87.5% if only CA125 is used) and, more importantly, the presence of both CA125 and E2F5 increases specificity of OEC to 72.5% (an increase from 55% if only CA125 is used). This significantly improved accuracy suggests possibility of an improved diagnostics of OEC. Furthermore, detection of malignancy status in 86 cases (38 benign, 48 early and late OEC) shows that the use of E2F5 status in combination with other clinical characteristics allows for an improved detection of malignant cases with sensitivity

  16. Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy Significantly Improves Acute Gastrointestinal Toxicity in Pancreatic and Ampullary Cancers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yovino, Susannah; Poppe, Matthew; Jabbour, Salma; David, Vera; Garofalo, Michael; Pandya, Naimesh; Alexander, Richard; Hanna, Nader; Regine, William F.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: Among patients with upper abdominal malignancies, intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) can improve dose distributions to critical dose-limiting structures near the target. Whether these improved dose distributions are associated with decreased toxicity when compared with conventional three-dimensional treatment remains a subject of investigation. Methods and Materials: 46 patients with pancreatic/ampullary cancer were treated with concurrent chemoradiation (CRT) using inverse-planned IMRT. All patients received CRT based on 5-fluorouracil in a schema similar to Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) 97-04. Rates of acute gastrointestinal (GI) toxicity for this series of IMRT-treated patients were compared with those from RTOG 97-04, where all patients were treated with three-dimensional conformal techniques. Chi-square analysis was used to determine if there was a statistically different incidence in acute GI toxicity between these two groups of patients. Results: The overall incidence of Grade 3-4 acute GI toxicity was low in patients receiving IMRT-based CRT. When compared with patients who had three-dimensional treatment planning (RTOG 97-04), IMRT significantly reduced the incidence of Grade 3-4 nausea and vomiting (0% vs. 11%, p = 0.024) and diarrhea (3% vs. 18%, p = 0.017). There was no significant difference in the incidence of Grade 3-4 weight loss between the two groups of patients. Conclusions: IMRT is associated with a statistically significant decrease in acute upper and lower GI toxicity among patients treated with CRT for pancreatic/ampullary cancers. Future clinical trials plan to incorporate the use of IMRT, given that it remains a subject of active investigation.

  17. Integration of biomimicry and nanotechnology for significantly improved detection of circulating tumor cells (CTCs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myung, Ja Hye; Park, Sin-Jung; Wang, Andrew Z; Hong, Seungpyo

    2017-12-13

    Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have received a great deal of scientific and clinical attention as a biomarker for diagnosis and prognosis of many types of cancer. Given their potential significance in clinics, a variety of detection methods, utilizing the recent advances in nanotechnology and microfluidics, have been introduced in an effort of achieving clinically significant detection of CTCs. However, effective detection and isolation of CTCs still remain a tremendous challenge due to their extreme rarity and phenotypic heterogeneity. Among many approaches that are currently under development, this review paper focuses on a unique, promising approach that takes advantages of naturally occurring processes achievable through application of nanotechnology to realize significant improvement in sensitivity and specificity of CTC capture. We provide an overview of successful outcome of this biomimetic CTC capture system in detection of tumor cells from in vitro, in vivo, and clinical pilot studies. We also emphasize the clinical impact of CTCs as biomarkers in cancer diagnosis and predictive prognosis, which provides a cost-effective, minimally invasive method that potentially replaces or supplements existing methods such as imaging technologies and solid tissue biopsy. In addition, their potential prognostic values as treatment guidelines and that ultimately help to realize personalized therapy are discussed. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  18. Radiotherapy is associated with significant improvement in local and regional control in Merkel cell carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kang Susan H

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Introduction Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC is a rare tumour of skin. This study is a retrospective audit of patients with MCC from St Vincent’s and Mater Hospital, Sydney, Australia. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of radiotherapy (RT on the local and regional control of MCC lesions and survival of patients with MCC. Method The data bases in anatomical pathology, RT and surgery. We searched for patients having a diagnosis of MCC between 1996 and 2007. Patient, tumour and treatment characteristics were collected and analysed. Univariate survival analysis of categorical variables was conducted with the Kaplan-Meier method together with the Log-Rank test for statistical significance. Continuous variables were assessed using the Cox regression method. Multivariate analysis was performed for significant univariate results. Results Sixty seven patients were found. Sixty two who were stage I-III and were treated with radical intent were analysed. 68% were male. The median age was 74 years. Forty-two cases (68% were stage I or II, and 20 cases (32% were stage III. For the subset of 42 stage I and II patients, those that had RT to their primary site had a 2-year local recurrence free survival of 89% compared with 36% for patients not receiving RT (p Conclusions RT is associated with significant improvement in local and regional control in Merkel cell carcinoma. Immunosuppression is an important factor in overall survival.

  19. Significant Improvements in Pyranometer Nighttime Offsets Using High-Flow DC Ventilation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kutchenreiter, Mark; Michalski, J.J.; Long, C.N.; Habte, Aron

    2017-05-22

    Accurate solar radiation measurements using pyranometers are required to understand radiative impacts on the Earth's energy budget, solar energy production, and to validate radiative transfer models. Ventilators of pyranometers, which are used to keep the domes clean and dry, also affect instrument thermal offset accuracy. This poster presents a high-level overview of the ventilators for single-black-detector pyranometers and black-and-white pyranometers. For single-black-detector pyranometers with ventilators, high-flow-rate (50-CFM and higher), 12-V DC fans lower the offsets, lower the scatter, and improve the predictability of nighttime offsets compared to lower-flow-rate (35-CFM), 120-V AC fans operated in the same type of environmental setup. Black-and-white pyranometers, which are used to measure diffuse horizontal irradiance, sometimes show minor improvement with DC fan ventilation, but their offsets are always small, usually no more than 1 W/m2, whether AC- or DC-ventilated.

  20. Significant improvement in the electrical characteristics of Schottky barrier diodes on molecularly modified Gallium Nitride surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garg, Manjari; Naik, Tejas R.; Pathak, C. S.; Nagarajan, S.; Rao, V. Ramgopal; Singh, R.

    2018-04-01

    III-Nitride semiconductors face the issue of localized surface states, which causes fermi level pinning and large leakage current at the metal semiconductor interface, thereby degrading the device performance. In this work, we have demonstrated the use of a Self-Assembled Monolayer (SAM) of organic molecules to improve the electrical characteristics of Schottky barrier diodes (SBDs) on n-type Gallium Nitride (n-GaN) epitaxial films. The electrical characteristics of diodes were improved by adsorption of SAM of hydroxyl-phenyl metallated porphyrin organic molecules (Zn-TPPOH) onto the surface of n-GaN. SAM-semiconductor bonding via native oxide on the n-GaN surface was confirmed using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy measurements. Surface morphology and surface electronic properties were characterized using atomic force microscopy and Kelvin probe force microscopy. Current-voltage characteristics of different metal (Cu, Ni) SBDs on bare n-GaN were compared with those of Cu/Zn-TPPOH/n-GaN and Ni/Zn-TPPOH/n-GaN SBDs. It was found that due to the molecular monolayer, the surface potential of n-GaN was decreased by ˜350 mV. This caused an increase in the Schottky barrier height of Cu and Ni SBDs from 1.13 eV to 1.38 eV and 1.07 eV to 1.22 eV, respectively. In addition to this, the reverse bias leakage current was reduced by 3-4 orders of magnitude for both Cu and Ni SBDs. Such a significant improvement in the electrical performance of the diodes can be very useful for better device functioning.

  1. Significant improvement in dynamic visual acuity after cataract surgery: a promising potential parameter for functional vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ao, Mingxin; Li, Xuemin; Huang, Chen; Hou, Zhiqiang; Qiu, Weiqiang; Wang, Wei

    2014-01-01

    Dynamic visual acuity (DVA) is a relatively independent parameter for evaluating the ability to distinguish details of a moving target. The present study has been designed to discuss the extent to which age-related cataract impacts DVA in elderly individuals and to determine whether it could be restored after bilateral phacoemulsification combined with intraocular lens implantation surgery. Twenty-six elderly cataract patients scheduled for binocular cataract surgery and 30 elderly volunteers without cataract were enrolled in the study. DVA at 15, 30, 60 and 90 degree per second (dps) was assessed, and velocity-dependent visual acuity decreases between consecutive speed levels were calculated. Compared with the control group, the patient group exhibited significantly worse DVA performance at all speed levels (pDVA performance at every speed level in the patient group clearly improved (pDVA was more pronounced than the improvement in static visual acuity (p15 dps = 0.001 and pDVA was more severe than its effects on static visual acuity. After cataract surgery, not only static vision of the patients was restored markedly, but also the dynamic vision. DVA could be an important adjunct to the current evaluation system of functional vision, thereby meriting additional attention in clinical assessment.

  2. Fabrication of CoZn alloy nanowire arrays: Significant improvement in magnetic properties by annealing process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koohbor, M.; Soltanian, S.; Najafi, M.; Servati, P.

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Increasing the Zn concentration changes the structure of NWs from hcp to amorphous. ► Increasing the Zn concentration significantly reduces the Hc value of NWs. ► Magnetic properties of CoZn NWs can be significantly enhanced by appropriate annealing. ► The pH of electrolyte has no significant effect on the properties of the NW arrays. ► Deposition frequency has considerable effects on the magnetic properties of NWs. - Abstract: Highly ordered arrays of Co 1−x Zn x (0 ≤ x ≤ 0.74) nanowires (NWs) with diameters of ∼35 nm and high length-to-diameter ratios (up to 150) were fabricated by co-electrodeposition of Co and Zn into pores of anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) templates. The Co and Zn contents of the NWs were adjusted by varying the ratio of Zn and Co ion concentrations in the electrolyte. The effect of the Zn content, electrodeposition conditions (frequency and pH) and annealing on the structural and magnetic properties (e.g., coercivity (Hc) and squareness (Sq)) of NW arrays were investigated using X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy, electron diffraction, and alternating gradient force magnetometer (AGFM). XRD patterns reveal that an increase in the concentration of Zn ions of the electrolyte forces the hcp crystal structure of Co NWs to change into an amorphous phase, resulting in a significant reduction in Hc. It was found that the magnetic properties of NWs can be significantly improved by appropriate annealing process. The highest values for Hc (2050 Oe) and Sq (0.98) were obtained for NWs electrodeposited using 0.95/0.05 Co:Zn concentrations at 200 Hz and annealed at 575 °C. While the pH of electrolyte is found to have no significant effect on the structural and magnetic properties of the NW arrays, the electrodeposition frequency has considerable effects on the magnetic properties of the NW arrays. The changes in magnetic property of NWs are rooted in a competition between shape anisotropy and

  3. Fabrication of CoZn alloy nanowire arrays: Significant improvement in magnetic properties by annealing process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koohbor, M. [Department of Physics, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Soltanian, S., E-mail: s.soltanian@gmail.com [Department of Physics, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of British Columbia, Vancouver (Canada); Najafi, M. [Department of Physics, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Department of Physics, Hamadan University of Technology, Hamadan (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Servati, P. [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of British Columbia, Vancouver (Canada)

    2012-01-05

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Increasing the Zn concentration changes the structure of NWs from hcp to amorphous. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Increasing the Zn concentration significantly reduces the Hc value of NWs. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Magnetic properties of CoZn NWs can be significantly enhanced by appropriate annealing. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The pH of electrolyte has no significant effect on the properties of the NW arrays. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Deposition frequency has considerable effects on the magnetic properties of NWs. - Abstract: Highly ordered arrays of Co{sub 1-x}Zn{sub x} (0 {<=} x {<=} 0.74) nanowires (NWs) with diameters of {approx}35 nm and high length-to-diameter ratios (up to 150) were fabricated by co-electrodeposition of Co and Zn into pores of anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) templates. The Co and Zn contents of the NWs were adjusted by varying the ratio of Zn and Co ion concentrations in the electrolyte. The effect of the Zn content, electrodeposition conditions (frequency and pH) and annealing on the structural and magnetic properties (e.g., coercivity (Hc) and squareness (Sq)) of NW arrays were investigated using X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy, electron diffraction, and alternating gradient force magnetometer (AGFM). XRD patterns reveal that an increase in the concentration of Zn ions of the electrolyte forces the hcp crystal structure of Co NWs to change into an amorphous phase, resulting in a significant reduction in Hc. It was found that the magnetic properties of NWs can be significantly improved by appropriate annealing process. The highest values for Hc (2050 Oe) and Sq (0.98) were obtained for NWs electrodeposited using 0.95/0.05 Co:Zn concentrations at 200 Hz and annealed at 575 Degree-Sign C. While the pH of electrolyte is found to have no significant effect on the structural and magnetic properties of the NW arrays, the electrodeposition frequency has considerable effects on

  4. Improved Trailing Edge Noise Model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bertagnolio, Franck

    2012-01-01

    The modeling of the surface pressure spectrum under a turbulent boundary layer is investigated in the presence of an adverse pressure gradient along the flow direction. It is shown that discrepancies between measurements and results from a well-known model increase as the pressure gradient increa...

  5. Induction-heating MOCVD reactor with significantly improved heating efficiency and reduced harmful magnetic coupling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Kuang-Hui; Alotaibi, Hamad S.; Sun, Haiding; Lin, Ronghui; Guo, Wenzhe; Torres-Castanedo, Carlos G.; Liu, Kaikai; Valdes-Galán, Sergio; Li, Xiaohang

    2018-04-01

    In a conventional induction-heating III-nitride metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) reactor, the induction coil is outside the chamber. Therefore, the magnetic field does not couple with the susceptor well, leading to compromised heating efficiency and harmful coupling with the gas inlet and thus possible overheating. Hence, the gas inlet has to be at a minimum distance away from the susceptor. Because of the elongated flow path, premature reactions can be more severe, particularly between Al- and B-containing precursors and NH3. Here, we propose a structure that can significantly improve the heating efficiency and allow the gas inlet to be closer to the susceptor. Specifically, the induction coil is designed to surround the vertical cylinder of a T-shaped susceptor comprising the cylinder and a top horizontal plate holding the wafer substrate within the reactor. Therefore, the cylinder coupled most magnetic field to serve as the thermal source for the plate. Furthermore, the plate can block and thus significantly reduce the uncoupled magnetic field above the susceptor, thereby allowing the gas inlet to be closer. The results show approximately 140% and 2.6 times increase in the heating and susceptor coupling efficiencies, respectively, as well as a 90% reduction in the harmful magnetic flux on the gas inlet.

  6. Induction-heating MOCVD reactor with significantly improved heating efficiency and reduced harmful magnetic coupling

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Kuang-Hui

    2018-02-23

    In a conventional induction-heating III-nitride metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) reactor, the induction coil is outside the chamber. Therefore, the magnetic field does not couple with the susceptor well, leading to compromised heating efficiency and harmful coupling with the gas inlet and thus possible overheating. Hence, the gas inlet has to be at a minimum distance away from the susceptor. Because of the elongated flow path, premature reactions can be more severe, particularly between Al- and B-containing precursors and NH3. Here, we propose a structure that can significantly improve the heating efficiency and allow the gas inlet to be closer to the susceptor. Specifically, the induction coil is designed to surround the vertical cylinder of a T-shaped susceptor comprising the cylinder and a top horizontal plate holding the wafer substrate within the reactor. Therefore, the cylinder coupled most magnetic field to serve as the thermal source for the plate. Furthermore, the plate can block and thus significantly reduce the uncoupled magnetic field above the susceptor, thereby allowing the gas inlet to be closer. The results show approximately 140% and 2.6 times increase in the heating and susceptor coupling efficiencies, respectively, as well as a 90% reduction in the harmful magnetic flux on the gas inlet.

  7. The European Academy laparoscopic “Suturing Training and Testing’’ (SUTT) significantly improves surgeons’ performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sleiman, Z.; Tanos, V.; Van Belle, Y.; Carvalho, J.L.; Campo, R.

    2015-01-01

    The efficiency of suturing training and testing (SUTT) model by laparoscopy was evaluated, measuring the suturingskill acquisition of trainee gynecologists at the beginning and at the end of a teaching course. During a workshop organized by the European Academy of Gynecological Surgery (EAGS), 25 participants with three different experience levels in laparoscopy (minor, intermediate and major) performed the 4 exercises of the SUTT model (Ex 1: both hands stitching and continuous suturing, Ex 2: right hand stitching and intracorporeal knotting, Ex 3: left hand stitching and intracorporeal knotting, Ex 4: dominant hand stitching, tissue approximation and intracorporeal knotting). The time needed to perform the exercises is recorded for each trainee and group and statistical analysis used to note the differences. Overall, all trainees achieved significant improvement in suturing time (p psychomotor skills, surgery, teaching, training suturing model. PMID:26977264

  8. Improved model for statistical alignment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miklos, I.; Toroczkai, Z. (Zoltan)

    2001-01-01

    The statistical approach to molecular sequence evolution involves the stochastic modeling of the substitution, insertion and deletion processes. Substitution has been modeled in a reliable way for more than three decades by using finite Markov-processes. Insertion and deletion, however, seem to be more difficult to model, and thc recent approaches cannot acceptably deal with multiple insertions and deletions. A new method based on a generating function approach is introduced to describe the multiple insertion process. The presented algorithm computes the approximate joint probability of two sequences in 0(13) running time where 1 is the geometric mean of the sequence lengths.

  9. Model-based software process improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zettervall, Brenda T.

    1994-01-01

    The activities of a field test site for the Software Engineering Institute's software process definition project are discussed. Products tested included the improvement model itself, descriptive modeling techniques, the CMM level 2 framework document, and the use of process definition guidelines and templates. The software process improvement model represents a five stage cyclic approach for organizational process improvement. The cycles consist of the initiating, diagnosing, establishing, acting, and leveraging phases.

  10. FES Training in Aging: interim results show statistically significant improvements in mobility and muscle fiber size

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helmut Kern

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Aging is a multifactorial process that is characterized by decline in muscle mass and performance. Several factors, including reduced exercise, poor nutrition and modified hormonal metabolism, are responsible for changes in the rates of protein synthesis and degradation that drive skeletal muscle mass reduction with a consequent decline of force generation and mobility functional performances. Seniors with normal life style were enrolled: two groups in Vienna (n=32 and two groups in Bratislava: (n=19. All subjects were healthy and declared not to have any specific physical/disease problems. The two Vienna groups of seniors exercised for 10 weeks with two different types of training (leg press at the hospital or home-based functional electrical stimulation, h-b FES. Demografic data (age, height and weight were recorded before and after the training period and before and after the training period the patients were submitted to mobility functional analyses and muscle biopsies. The mobility functional analyses were: 1. gait speed (10m test fastest speed, in m/s; 2. time which the subject needed to rise from a chair for five times (5x Chair-Rise, in s; 3. Timed –Up-Go- Test, in s; 4. Stair-Test, in s; 5. isometric measurement of quadriceps force (Torque/kg, in Nm/kg; and 6. Dynamic Balance in mm. Preliminary analyses of muscle biopsies from quadriceps in some of the Vienna and Bratislava patients present morphometric results consistent with their functional behaviors. The statistically significant improvements in functional testings here reported demonstrates the effectiveness of h-b FES, and strongly support h-b FES, as a safe home-based method to improve contractility and performances of ageing muscles.

  11. Significant improvements in stability and reproducibility of atomic-scale atomic force microscopy in liquid

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akrami, S M R; Nakayachi, H; Fukuma, T; Watanabe-Nakayama, T; Asakawa, H

    2014-01-01

    Recent advancement of dynamic-mode atomic force microscopy (AFM) for liquid-environment applications enabled atomic-scale studies on various interfacial phenomena. However, instabilities and poor reproducibility of the measurements often prevent systematic studies. To solve this problem, we have investigated the effect of various tip treatment methods for atomic-scale imaging and force measurements in liquid. The tested methods include Si coating, Ar plasma, Ar sputtering and UV/O 3 cleaning. We found that all the methods provide significant improvements in both the imaging and force measurements in spite of the tip transfer through the air. Among the methods, we found that the Si coating provides the best stability and reproducibility in the measurements. To understand the origin of the fouling resistance of the cleaned tip surface and the difference between the cleaning methods, we have investigated the tip surface properties by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and contact angle measurements. The results show that the contaminations adsorbed on the tip during the tip transfer through the air should desorb from the surface when it is immersed in aqueous solution due to the enhanced hydrophilicity by the tip treatments. The tip surface prepared by the Si coating is oxidized when it is immersed in aqueous solution. This creates local spots where stable hydration structures are formed. For the other methods, there is no active mechanism to create such local hydration sites. Thus, the hydration structure formed under the tip apex is not necessarily stable. These results reveal the desirable tip properties for atomic-scale AFM measurements in liquid, which should serve as a guideline for further improvements of the tip treatment methods. (paper)

  12. Significantly improving trace thallium removal from surface waters during coagulation enhanced by nanosized manganese dioxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huangfu, Xiaoliu; Ma, Chengxue; Ma, Jun; He, Qiang; Yang, Chun; Jiang, Jin; Wang, Yaan; Wu, Zhengsong

    2017-02-01

    Thallium (Tl) is an element of high toxicity and significant accumulation in human body. There is an urgent need for the development of appropriate strategies for trace Tl removal in drinking water treatment plants. In this study, the efficiency and mechanism of trace Tl (0.5 μg/L) removal by conventional coagulation enhanced by nanosized manganese dioxide (nMnO 2 ) were explored in simulated water and two representative surface waters (a river water and a reservoir water obtained from Northeast China). Experimental results showed that nMnO 2 significantly improve Tl(I) removal from selected waters. The removal efficiency was dramatically higher in the simulated water, demonstrating by less than 0.1 μg/L Tl residual. The enhancement of trace Tl removal in the surface waters decreased to a certain extent. Both adjusting water pH to alkaline condition and preoxidation of Tl(I) to Tl(III) benefit trace Tl removal from surface waters. Data also indicated that competitive cation of Ca 2+ decreased the efficiency of trace Tl removal, resulting from the reduction of Tl adsorption on nMnO 2 . Humic acid could largely low Tl removal efficiency during nMnO 2 enhanced coagulation processes. Trace elemental Tl firstly adsorbed on nMnO 2 and then removed accompanying with nMnO 2 settling. The information obtained in the present study may provide a potential strategy for drinking water treatment plants threatened by trace Tl. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Significant improvements of electrical discharge machining performance by step-by-step updated adaptive control laws

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Ming; Wu, Jianyang; Xu, Xiaoyi; Mu, Xin; Dou, Yunping

    2018-02-01

    In order to obtain improved electrical discharge machining (EDM) performance, we have dedicated more than a decade to correcting one essential EDM defect, the weak stability of the machining, by developing adaptive control systems. The instabilities of machining are mainly caused by complicated disturbances in discharging. To counteract the effects from the disturbances on machining, we theoretically developed three control laws from minimum variance (MV) control law to minimum variance and pole placements coupled (MVPPC) control law and then to a two-step-ahead prediction (TP) control law. Based on real-time estimation of EDM process model parameters and measured ratio of arcing pulses which is also called gap state, electrode discharging cycle was directly and adaptively tuned so that a stable machining could be achieved. To this end, we not only theoretically provide three proved control laws for a developed EDM adaptive control system, but also practically proved the TP control law to be the best in dealing with machining instability and machining efficiency though the MVPPC control law provided much better EDM performance than the MV control law. It was also shown that the TP control law also provided a burn free machining.

  14. A Unified Framework for Systematic Model Improvement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Niels Rode; Madsen, Henrik; Jørgensen, Sten Bay

    2003-01-01

    A unified framework for improving the quality of continuous time models of dynamic systems based on experimental data is presented. The framework is based on an interplay between stochastic differential equation (SDE) modelling, statistical tests and multivariate nonparametric regression...

  15. Significantly improved photocurrent response of ZnS-reduced graphene oxide composites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sookhakian, M.; Amin, Y.M.; Zakaria, R.; Basirun, W.J.; Mahmoudian, M.R.; Nasiri-Tabrizi, B.; Baradaran, S.; Azarang, Majid

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • ZnS/reduced graphene oxide nanoparticles by hydrothermal method. • ZnS nanoparticles in a gelatin medium without agglomeration. • Support of ZnS shows efficient photocurrent response. • The fabricated solar cell electrode improved in the presence of reduced graphene oxide. - Abstract: ZnS-nanoparticles (NPs) reduced graphene oxide (rGO) composites with a high degree of crystallinity and high dispersity were successfully synthesized via a facile solvothermal method in the gelatin medium, during which the formation of ZnS NPs, reduction of graphene oxide and loading of ZnS NPs into the rGO surface occur simultaneously. Gelatin, as a natural capping agent, plays a significant role in controlling the degree of dispersion and coverage of ZnS NPs. The effect of rGO on the crystalline structure and optical properties of ZnS NPs were determined via X-ray diffraction, UV–visible diffused reflectance spectroscopy and photoluminescence spectroscopy. The ZnS–rGO composites exhibit excellent potential for photocurrent generation compared with pure ZnS NPs under visible light irradiation, provided that efficient photoinduced charge separation and transportation can be achieved at the interface. The maximum photocurrent response was obtained for ZnS–rGO composite with a 3% mass fraction of rGO, which is 2 times that achieved on pure ZnS NPs

  16. Significant effect of Ca2+ on improving the heat resistance of lactic acid bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Song; Chen, Xiao Dong

    2013-07-01

    The heat resistance of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) has been extensively investigated due to its highly practical significance. Reconstituted skim milk (RSM) has been found to be one of the most effective protectant wall materials for microencapsulating microorganisms during convective drying, such as spray drying. In addition to proteins and carbohydrate, RSM is rich in calcium. It is not clear which component is critical in the RSM protection mechanism. This study investigated the independent effect of calcium. Ca(2+) was added to lactose solution to examine its influence on the heat resistance of Lactobacillus rhamnosus ZY, Lactobacillus casei Zhang, Lactobacillus plantarum P8 and Streptococcus thermophilus ND03. The results showed that certain Ca(2+) concentrations enhanced the heat resistance of the LAB strains to different extents, that is produced higher survival and shorter regrowth lag times of the bacterial cells. In some cases, the improvements were dramatic. More scientifically insightful and more intensive instrumental study of the Ca(2+) behavior around and in the cells should be carried out in the near future. In the meantime, this work may lead to the development of more cost-effective wall materials with Ca(2+) added as a prime factor. © 2013 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Codon optimization significantly improves the expression level of a keratinase gene in Pichia pastoris.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong Hu

    Full Text Available The main keratinase (kerA gene from the Bacillus licheniformis S90 was optimized by two codon optimization strategies and expressed in Pichia pastoris in order to improve the enzyme production compared to the preparations with the native kerA gene. The results showed that the corresponding mutations (synonymous codons according to the codon bias in Pichia pastoris were successfully introduced into keratinase gene. The highest keratinase activity produced by P. pastoris pPICZαA-kerAwt, pPICZαA-kerAopti1 and pPICZαA-kerAopti2 was 195 U/ml, 324 U/ml and 293 U/ml respectively. In addition, there was no significant difference in biomass concentration, target gene copy numbers and relative mRNA expression levels of every positive strain. The molecular weight of keratinase secreted by recombinant P. pastori was approx. 39 kDa. It was optimally active at pH 7.5 and 50°C. The recombinant keratinase could efficiently degrade both α-keratin (keratin azure and β-keratin (chicken feather meal. These properties make the P. pastoris pPICZαA-kerAopti1 a suitable candidate for industrial production of keratinases.

  18. A Novel AED Electrode Design Significantly Improves Laypersons Abillities to Correctly Place AED Electrodes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bødtker, Henrik; Stærk, Mathilde; Glerup Lauridsen, Kasper

    2017-01-01

    electrode designs on a 10 point-scale. The primary endpoint was ratio of correct left apical AED electrode placement defined as ≤5 cm from the recommended position.Results: In total, 84 participants were randomized to novel (n=39, female: 62% median age: 41.5 years (±10.3)) and standard (n=45, female: 64......% median age: 43.5 (±8.2)) electrodes. The left apical AED electrode placement was improved when using novel electrodes with pictures compared with standard electrodes (51% vs 18%, (P<0.0001). No significant difference in right AED electrode placement was observed. Time to AED electrode placement...... was faster using novel electrodes with pictures (difference: 7.9 sec, P<0.0001). User-friendliness was rated higher in novel AED electrodes with pictures compared to conventional electrodes (9 (8;10) vs. 7 (6;8)) (P=0.001).Conclusion: A novel AED electrode design with pictures results in faster and better...

  19. Significantly improved photocurrent response of ZnS-reduced graphene oxide composites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sookhakian, M., E-mail: m.sokhakian@gmail.com [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Amin, Y.M. [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Zakaria, R. [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Photonics Research Centre, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Basirun, W.J. [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Institute of Nanotechnology & Catalysis Research (NanoCat), University Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Mahmoudian, M.R. [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Nasiri-Tabrizi, B.; Baradaran, S. [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Azarang, Majid [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia)

    2015-05-25

    Highlights: • ZnS/reduced graphene oxide nanoparticles by hydrothermal method. • ZnS nanoparticles in a gelatin medium without agglomeration. • Support of ZnS shows efficient photocurrent response. • The fabricated solar cell electrode improved in the presence of reduced graphene oxide. - Abstract: ZnS-nanoparticles (NPs) reduced graphene oxide (rGO) composites with a high degree of crystallinity and high dispersity were successfully synthesized via a facile solvothermal method in the gelatin medium, during which the formation of ZnS NPs, reduction of graphene oxide and loading of ZnS NPs into the rGO surface occur simultaneously. Gelatin, as a natural capping agent, plays a significant role in controlling the degree of dispersion and coverage of ZnS NPs. The effect of rGO on the crystalline structure and optical properties of ZnS NPs were determined via X-ray diffraction, UV–visible diffused reflectance spectroscopy and photoluminescence spectroscopy. The ZnS–rGO composites exhibit excellent potential for photocurrent generation compared with pure ZnS NPs under visible light irradiation, provided that efficient photoinduced charge separation and transportation can be achieved at the interface. The maximum photocurrent response was obtained for ZnS–rGO composite with a 3% mass fraction of rGO, which is 2 times that achieved on pure ZnS NPs.

  20. Significant improvement in dynamic visual acuity after cataract surgery: a promising potential parameter for functional vision.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingxin Ao

    Full Text Available PURPOSE: Dynamic visual acuity (DVA is a relatively independent parameter for evaluating the ability to distinguish details of a moving target. The present study has been designed to discuss the extent to which age-related cataract impacts DVA in elderly individuals and to determine whether it could be restored after bilateral phacoemulsification combined with intraocular lens implantation surgery. METHODS: Twenty-six elderly cataract patients scheduled for binocular cataract surgery and 30 elderly volunteers without cataract were enrolled in the study. DVA at 15, 30, 60 and 90 degree per second (dps was assessed, and velocity-dependent visual acuity decreases between consecutive speed levels were calculated. RESULTS: Compared with the control group, the patient group exhibited significantly worse DVA performance at all speed levels (p<0.001, and the decreases in velocity-dependent visual acuity were more serious in the patient group at the intervals of 0-15 dps (p<0.001, 15-30 dps (p = 0.007 and 30-60 dps (p = 0.008. Postoperatively, DVA performance at every speed level in the patient group clearly improved (p<0.001 and recovered to levels compatible to the control group. The decrease in visual acuity with increasing speed was less pronounced than during the preoperative phase (p0-15 dps = 0.001, p15-30 dps<0.001 and p30-60 dps = 0.001 and became similar to that of the control group. The postoperative visual benefit regarding DVA was more pronounced than the improvement in static visual acuity (p15 dps = 0.001 and p<0.001 at 30 dps, 60 dps and 90 dps. CONCLUSIONS: The impact of age-related cataract on DVA was more severe than its effects on static visual acuity. After cataract surgery, not only static vision of the patients was restored markedly, but also the dynamic vision. DVA could be an important adjunct to the current evaluation system of functional vision, thereby meriting additional attention in clinical assessment.

  1. Introduction of e-learning in dental radiology reveals significantly improved results in final examination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meckfessel, Sandra; Stühmer, Constantin; Bormann, Kai-Hendrik; Kupka, Thomas; Behrends, Marianne; Matthies, Herbert; Vaske, Bernhard; Stiesch, Meike; Gellrich, Nils-Claudius; Rücker, Martin

    2011-01-01

    Because a traditionally instructed dental radiology lecture course is very time-consuming and labour-intensive, online courseware, including an interactive-learning module, was implemented to support the lectures. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the perceptions of students who have worked with web-based courseware as well as the effect on their results in final examinations. Users (n(3+4)=138) had access to the e-program from any networked computer at any time. Two groups (n(3)=71, n(4)=67) had to pass a final exam after using the e-course. Results were compared with two groups (n(1)=42, n(2)=48) who had studied the same content by attending traditional lectures. In addition a survey of the students was statistically evaluated. Most of the respondents reported a positive attitude towards e-learning and would have appreciated more access to computer-assisted instruction. Two years after initiating the e-course the failure rate in the final examination dropped significantly, from 40% to less than 2%. The very positive response to the e-program and improved test scores demonstrated the effectiveness of our e-course as a learning aid. Interactive modules in step with clinical practice provided learning that is not achieved by traditional teaching methods alone. To what extent staff savings are possible is part of a further study. Copyright © 2010 European Association for Cranio-Maxillo-Facial Surgery. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Significant improvement of eczema with skin care and food elimination in small children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norrman, Gunilla; Tomicić, Sara; Böttcher, Malin Fagerås; Oldaeus, Göran; Strömberg, Leif; Fälth-magnusson, Karin

    2005-10-01

    To evaluate common methods of investigation and treatment in children younger than 2 y of age with eczema, with or without sensitization to food allergens. One hundred and twenty-three children younger than 2 y of age with eczema and suspected food allergy were included in this prospective study. The children underwent skin-prick test with cow's milk, fresh hen's egg white and wheat. Specific IgE to milk and egg white was analysed. The eczema extent and severity was estimated with SCORAD before and after treatment. Children with a positive skin-prick test were instructed to exclude that food item from their diet. All children were treated with emollients and topical steroids when needed. Sixty-two of the children were skin-prick positive to at least one of the allergens; 62% had mild, 30% moderate and 8% severe eczema at their first visit. After treatment, 90% had mild, 10% moderate and 0% severe eczema. Forty-six per cent of the children had circulating IgE antibodies to milk or egg white. Ten per cent had specific IgE but negative skin-prick test to the same allergen. This subgroup improved their eczema significantly without elimination diet. The conventional treatments for children with eczema, i.e. skin care and food elimination, are effective. The beneficial effect of skin care as the first step should not be neglected, and it may not be necessary to eliminate food allergens to relieve skin symptoms in all food-sensitized children with eczema.

  3. The cumulative effect of small dietary changes may significantly improve nutritional intakes in free-living children and adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paineau, D; Beaufils, F; Boulier, A; Cassuto, D-A; Chwalow, J; Combris, P; Couet, C; Jouret, B; Lafay, L; Laville, M; Mahe, S; Ricour, C; Romon, M; Simon, C; Tauber, M; Valensi, P; Chapalain, V; Zourabichvili, O; Bornet, F R J

    2010-08-01

    The ELPAS (Etude Longitudinale Prospective Alimentation et Santé) study was an 8-month randomized controlled dietary modification trial designed to test the hypothesis that family dietary coaching would improve nutritional intakes and weight control in 2026 free-living children and parents. It resulted in significant nutritional changes, with beneficial effects on body mass index in adults. In these ancillary analyses, we investigated dietary changes throughout the intervention. Before the study, modeling analyses were carried out on the French Association Sucre Produits Sucrés Consommation et Communication (ASPCC) food-consumption database to identify the most efficient dietary intervention strategy. During the study, all participants performed monthly three nonconsecutive 24-h dietary recalls: this allowed for measuring changes in the number of servings per day and serving size for each targeted food category throughout the intervention. Modeling analyses showed that targeting only the 10 main foods contributing to fat and carbohydrate intakes did not allow for reaching the ELPAS nutritional goals. As a result, it was decided to target more foods and to propose several types of dietary advice (such as change in serving size, change in cooking method, food substitution). This strategy led to many appropriate dietary changes during the intervention, but only a few of them reached significance. The mean number of servings per day was indeed significantly modified for only 7% of the targeted food categories in children and 17% in parents. The mean serving size was modified for only 12% of targeted food categories in children and 9% in parents. The cumulative effect of small dietary changes may induce significant nutritional improvements, with limited burden for populations.

  4. The Sustainable Improvement and Innovation Model

    OpenAIRE

    Clark, Richard A.; Timms, Janice; Parnell, Peter F.; Griffith, Garry R.

    2008-01-01

    The Beef CRC's 'Sustainable Beef Profit Partnerships' (BPP) project is built around the Sustainable Improvement and Innovation (SI&I) Model – a model for the design, leadership and management of projects to achieve rapid and sustained improvement and innovation, and accelerated adoption. The model is implemented through a systemic approach to project design, and the development of a number of integrated strategies to guide the targeting of priority outcomes and work plans. The emphasis is o...

  5. The Significance of the Bystander Effect: Modeling, Experiments, and More Modeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brenner, David J.

    2009-07-22

    Non-targeted (bystander) effects of ionizing radiation are caused by intercellular signaling; they include production of DNA damage and alterations in cell fate (i.e. apoptosis, differentiation, senescence or proliferation). Biophysical models capable of quantifying these effects may improve cancer risk estimation at radiation doses below the epidemiological detection threshold. Understanding the spatial patterns of bystander responses is important, because it provides estimates of how many bystander cells are affected per irradiated cell. In a first approach to modeling of bystander spatial effects in a three-dimensional artificial tissue, we assumed the following: (1) The bystander phenomenon results from signaling molecules (S) that rapidly propagate from irradiated cells and decrease in concentration (exponentially in the case of planar symmetry) as distance increases. (2) These signals can convert cells to a long-lived epigenetically activated state, e.g. a state of oxidative stress; cells in this state are more prone to DNA damage and behavior alterations than normal and therefore exhibit an increased response (R) for many end points (e.g. apoptosis, differentiation, micronucleation). These assumptions were implemented by a mathematical formalism and computational algorithms. The model adequately described data on bystander responses in the 3D system using a small number of adjustable parameters. Mathematical models of radiation carcinogenesis are important for understanding mechanisms and for interpreting or extrapolating risk. There are two classes of such models: (1) long-term formalisms that track pre-malignant cell numbers throughout an entire lifetime but treat initial radiation dose-response simplistically and (2) short-term formalisms that provide a detailed initial dose-response even for complicated radiation protocols, but address its modulation during the subsequent cancer latency period only indirectly. We argue that integrating short- and long

  6. Contemporary Management of Acute Aortic Occlusion Has Evolved but Outcomes Have Not Significantly Improved.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, William P; Patel, Rupal K; Columbo, Jesse A; Flahive, Julie; Aiello, Francesco A; Baril, Donald T; Schanzer, Andres; Messina, Louis M

    2016-07-01

    hospitalization. AAO is now more commonly caused by in situ thrombosis rather than embolism. A high index of suspicion for AAO is required for prompt diagnosis and treatment, particularly when patients present with profound lower extremity neurologic deficit. In comparison with previous reports, the contemporary management of AAO includes increased use of axillobifemoral bypass and now involves endovascular revascularization, although a variety of open surgical procedures are utilized. However, the in-hospital mortality and morbidity of AAO has not decreased significantly over the last 2 decades and mid-term survival remains limited. Further study is required to identify strategies that improve outcomes after AAO. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Efficiency improvement of nuclear power plant operation: the significant role of advanced nuclear fuel technologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Velde, AA. de; Burtak, F.

    2000-01-01

    In this paper authors deals with nuclear fuel cycle and their economic aspects. At Siemens, the developments focusing on the reduction of fuel cycle costs are currently directed on .further batch average burnup increase, .improvement of fuel reliability, .enlargement of fuel operation margins, .improvement of methods for fuel design and core analysis. These items will be presented in detail in the full paper and illustrated by the global operating experience of Siemens fuel for both PWRs and BWRs. (authors)

  8. Research and development of concept leading to an automotive alternator with significantly improved efficiency and weight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noddin, R. C.

    1980-01-01

    A 20 to 25 percent improvement in both output/pound and efficiency relative to control performance of a present production Delco #1102848 alternator was achieved by substitution of a redesign stator of equal or smaller weight and size and in a configuration lending to low cost and manufacturability. Analysis of bench tests on the subject alternator incorporating the redesigned stator reveals an output/pound improvement of 30 percent thereby exceeding the design goal, and an average efficiency improvement of 25 percent easily equalling, and at most points of the performance curve, exceeding the design goal. This was achieved in a design employing proven, low-cost, high volume manufacturing techniques. The redesigned stator also lends itself to direct interchangeability with stators in production alternators.

  9. National Emergency Preparedness and Response: Improving for Incidents of National Significance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Clayton, Christopher M

    2006-01-01

    .... More appropriately, the Department of Defense (DoD), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the states need to become better partners in planning for, exercising for, and responding to Incidents of National Significance...

  10. Reducing dysfunctional beliefs about sleep does not significantly improve insomnia in cognitive behavioral therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okajima, Isa; Nakajima, Shun; Ochi, Moeko; Inoue, Yuichi

    2014-01-01

    The present study examined to examine whether improvement of insomnia is mediated by a reduction in sleep-related dysfunctional beliefs through cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. In total, 64 patients with chronic insomnia received cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia consisting of 6 biweekly individual treatment sessions of 50 minutes in length. Participants were asked to complete the Athens Insomnia Scale and the Dysfunctional Beliefs and Attitudes about Sleep scale both at the baseline and at the end of treatment. The results showed that although cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia greatly reduced individuals' scores on both scales, the decrease in dysfunctional beliefs and attitudes about sleep with treatment did not seem to mediate improvement in insomnia. The findings suggest that sleep-related dysfunctional beliefs endorsed by patients with chronic insomnia may be attenuated by cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia, but changes in such beliefs are not likely to play a crucial role in reducing the severity of insomnia.

  11. A significant effect on flow analysis & simulation study of improve design hydraulic pump

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harith, M. N.; Bakar, R. A.; Ramasamy, D.; Quanjin, Ma

    2017-10-01

    Hydraulic ram pump is device that can lift water to the higher position without use of external energy. Several ways have been tested to decrease the water waste rate to maximize efficiency. The purpose of this research work is to develop a new design of hydraulic pump and conduct simulation study to justify improvement of the design. Major addition on making threaded waste valve system in order to control the opening and closing of the valve. At the same time reduce time taken for creating enough momentum and hammering effect. The results revealed that with the advancement of the proposed well improve designs, the water losses at waste valve reducing about 20-30% compare to existing design across the mass flow rate of 0.10 kg/s.The min/max velocity and pressure along the pipeline also has been increase for both open and closed condition.

  12. Reducing Dysfunctional Beliefs about Sleep Does Not Significantly Improve Insomnia in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

    OpenAIRE

    Okajima, Isa; Nakajima, Shun; Ochi, Moeko; Inoue, Yuichi

    2014-01-01

    The present study examined to examine whether improvement of insomnia is mediated by a reduction in sleep-related dysfunctional beliefs through cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. In total, 64 patients with chronic insomnia received cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia consisting of 6 biweekly individual treatment sessions of 50 minutes in length. Participants were asked to complete the Athens Insomnia Scale and the Dysfunctional Beliefs and Attitudes about Sleep scale both at the...

  13. Improved models of dense anharmonic lattices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rosenau, P., E-mail: rosenau@post.tau.ac.il; Zilburg, A.

    2017-01-15

    We present two improved quasi-continuous models of dense, strictly anharmonic chains. The direct expansion which includes the leading effect due to lattice dispersion, results in a Boussinesq-type PDE with a compacton as its basic solitary mode. Without increasing its complexity we improve the model by including additional terms in the expanded interparticle potential with the resulting compacton having a milder singularity at its edges. A particular care is applied to the Hertz potential due to its non-analyticity. Since, however, the PDEs of both the basic and the improved model are ill posed, they are unsuitable for a study of chains dynamics. Using the bond length as a state variable we manipulate its dispersion and derive a well posed fourth order PDE. - Highlights: • An improved PDE model of a Newtonian lattice renders compacton solutions. • Compactons are classical solutions of the improved model and hence amenable to standard analysis. • An alternative well posed model enables to study head on interactions of lattices' solitary waves. • Well posed modeling of Hertz potential.

  14. An improved method to set significance thresholds forβdiversity testing in microbial community comparisons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gülay, Arda; Smets, Barth F.

    2015-01-01

    , including those associated with the process of subsampling. These components exist for any proposed β diversity measurement procedure. Further, we introduce a strategy to set significance thresholds for β diversity of any group of microbial samples using rarefaction, invoking the notion of a meta-community...

  15. Intraoperative Sensorcaine significantly improves postoperative pain management in outpatient reduction mammaplasty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culliford, Alfred T; Spector, Jason A; Flores, Roberto L; Louie, Otway; Choi, Mihye; Karp, Nolan S

    2007-09-15

    Breast reduction is one of the most frequently performed plastic surgical procedures in the United States; more than 160,500 patients underwent the procedure in 2005. Many outpatient reduction mammaplasty patients report the greatest postoperative discomfort in the first 48 hours. The authors' investigated the effect of intraoperative topical application of the long-acting local anesthetic agent bupivacaine (Sensorcaine or Marcaine) on postoperative pain, time to postanesthesia care unit discharge, and postoperative use of narcotic medication. In a prospective, randomized, single-blind trial, intraoperative use of Sensorcaine versus placebo (normal saline) was compared. Postoperative pain was quantified using the visual analogue scale, and time to discharge from the postanesthesia care unit was recorded. Patients documented their outpatient pain medication usage. Of the 37 patients enrolled in the study, 20 were treated with intraoperative topical Sensorcaine and 17 received placebo. Patients treated with Sensorcaine were discharged home significantly faster (2.9 hours versus 3.8 hours, p = 0.002). The control arm consistently had higher pain scores in the postanesthesia care unit (although not statistically significant) than the Sensorcaine group using the visual analogue scale system. Furthermore, patients receiving Sensorcaine required significantly less narcotic medication while recovering at home (mean, 3.5 tablets of Vicodin) than the control group (mean, 6.4 tablets; p = 0.001). There were no complications resulting from Sensorcaine usage. This prospective, randomized, single-blind study demonstrates that a single dose of intraoperative Sensorcaine provides a safe, inexpensive, and efficacious way to significantly shorten the length of postanesthesia care unit stay and significantly decrease postoperative opioid analgesic use in patients undergoing ambulatory reduction mammaplasty.

  16. Significant improvement of mouse cloning technique by treatment with trichostatin A after somatic nuclear transfer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kishigami, Satoshi; Mizutani, Eiji; Ohta, Hiroshi; Hikichi, Takafusa; Thuan, Nguyen Van; Wakayama, Sayaka; Bui, Hong-Thuy; Wakayama, Teruhiko

    2006-01-01

    The low success rate of animal cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is believed to be associated with epigenetic errors including abnormal DNA hypermethylation. Recently, we elucidated by using round spermatids that, after nuclear transfer, treatment of zygotes with trichostatin A (TSA), an inhibitor of histone deacetylase, can remarkably reduce abnormal DNA hypermethylation depending on the origins of transferred nuclei and their genomic regions [S. Kishigami, N. Van Thuan, T. Hikichi, H. Ohta, S. Wakayama. E. Mizutani, T. Wakayama, Epigenetic abnormalities of the mouse paternal zygotic genome associated with microinsemination of round spermatids, Dev. Biol. (2005) in press]. Here, we found that 5-50 nM TSA-treatment for 10 h following oocyte activation resulted in more efficient in vitro development of somatic cloned embryos to the blastocyst stage from 2- to 5-fold depending on the donor cells including tail tip cells, spleen cells, neural stem cells, and cumulus cells. This TSA-treatment also led to more than 5-fold increase in success rate of mouse cloning from cumulus cells without obvious abnormality but failed to improve ES cloning success. Further, we succeeded in establishment of nuclear transfer-embryonic stem (NT-ES) cells from TSA-treated cloned blastocyst at a rate three times higher than those from untreated cloned blastocysts. Thus, our data indicate that TSA-treatment after SCNT in mice can dramatically improve the practical application of current cloning techniques

  17. Efficiency improvement of nuclear power plant operation: the significant role of advanced nuclear fuel technologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Velde Van de, A.; Burtak, F.

    2001-01-01

    Due to the increased liberalisation of the power markets, nuclear power generation is being exposed to high cost reduction pressure. In this paper we highlight the role of advanced nuclear fuel technologies to reduce the fuel cycle costs and therefore increase the efficiency of nuclear power plant operation. The key factor is a more efficient utilisation of the fuel and present developments at Siemens are consequently directed at (i) further increase of batch average burnup, (ii) improvement of fuel reliability, (iii) enlargement of fuel operation margins and (iv) improvement of methods for fuel design and core analysis. As a result, the nuclear fuel cycle costs for a typical LWR have been reduced during the past decades by about US$ 35 million per year. The estimated impact of further burnup increases on the fuel cycle costs is expected to be an additional saving of US$10 - 15 million per year. Due to the fact that the fuel will operate closer to design limits, a careful approach is required when introducing advanced fuel features in reload quantities. Trust and co-operation between the fuel vendors and the utilities is a prerequisite for the common success. (authors)

  18. Improved ionic model of liquid uranium dioxide

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gryaznov, [No Value; Iosilevski, [No Value; Yakub, E; Fortov, [No Value; Hyland, GJ; Ronchi, C

    The paper presents a model for liquid uranium dioxide, obtained by improving a simplified ionic model, previously adopted to describe the equation of state of this substance [1]. A "chemical picture" is used for liquid UO2 of stoichiometric and non-stoichiometric composition. Several ionic species

  19. Understanding catchment behaviour through model concept improvement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fenicia, F.

    2008-01-01

    This thesis describes an approach to model development based on the concept of iterative model improvement, which is a process where by trial and error different hypotheses of catchment behaviour are progressively tested, and the understanding of the system proceeds through a combined process of

  20. A Continuous Improvement Capital Funding Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Matt

    2001-01-01

    Describes a capital funding model that helps assess facility renewal needs in a way that minimizes resources while maximizing results. The article explains the sub-components of a continuous improvement capital funding model, including budgeting processes for finish renewal, building performance renewal, and critical outcome. (GR)

  1. Zero valent iron significantly enhances methane production from waste activated sludge by improving biochemical methane potential rather than hydrolysis rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yiwen; Wang, Qilin; Zhang, Yaobin; Ni, Bing-Jie

    2015-02-05

    Anaerobic digestion has been widely applied for waste activated sludge (WAS) treatment. However, methane production from anaerobic digestion of WAS is usually limited by the slow hydrolysis rate and/or poor biochemical methane potential of WAS. This work systematically studied the effects of three different types of zero valent iron (i.e., iron powder, clean scrap and rusty scrap) on methane production from WAS in anaerobic digestion, by using both experimental and mathematical approaches. The results demonstrated that both the clean and the rusty iron scrap were more effective than the iron powder for improving methane production from WAS. Model-based analysis showed that ZVI addition significantly enhanced methane production from WAS through improving the biochemical methane potential of WAS rather than its hydrolysis rate. Economic analysis indicated that the ZVI-based technology for enhancing methane production from WAS is economically attractive, particularly considering that iron scrap can be freely acquired from industrial waste. Based on these results, the ZVI-based anaerobic digestion process of this work could be easily integrated with the conventional chemical phosphorus removal process in wastewater treatment plant to form a cost-effective and environment-friendly approach, enabling maximum resource recovery/reuse while achieving enhanced methane production in wastewater treatment system.

  2. Improved Nonequilibrium Algebraic Model Of Turbulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, D. A.; Coakley, T. J.

    1993-01-01

    Blend of previous models predicts pressure distributions more accurately. Improved algebraic model represents some of time-averaged effects of turbulence in transonic flow of air over airfoil. Based partly on comparisons among various eddy-viscosity formulations for turbulence and partly on premise that law of wall more universally valid in immediate region of surface in presence of adverse gradient of pressure than mixing-length theory and original Johnson and King model.

  3. Can better modelling improve tokamak control?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lister, J.B.; Vyas, P.; Ward, D.J.; Albanese, R.; Ambrosino, G.; Ariola, M.; Villone, F.; Coutlis, A.; Limebeer, D.J.N.; Wainwright, J.P.

    1997-01-01

    The control of present day tokamaks usually relies upon primitive modelling and TCV is used to illustrate this. A counter example is provided by the successful implementation of high order SISO controllers on COMPASS-D. Suitable models of tokamaks are required to exploit the potential of modern control techniques. A physics based MIMO model of TCV is presented and validated with experimental closed loop responses. A system identified open loop model is also presented. An enhanced controller based on these models is designed and the performance improvements discussed. (author) 5 figs., 9 refs

  4. Improved gap conductance model for the TRAC code

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hatch, S.W.; Mandell, D.A.

    1980-01-01

    The purpose of the present work, as indicated earlier, is to improve the present constant fuel clad spacing in TRAC-P1A without significantly increasing the computer costs. It is realized that the simple model proposed may not be accurate enough for some cases, but for the initial calculations made the DELTAR model improves the predictions over the constant Δr results of TRAC-P1A and the additional computing costs are negligible

  5. A patient/family-centered strategic plan can drive significant improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brilli, Richard J; Crandall, Wallace V; Berry, Janet C; Stoverock, Linda; Rosen, Kerry; Budin, Lee; Kelleher, Kelly J; Gleeson, Sean P; Davis, J Terrance

    2014-08-01

    The use of a PFCSP, as a road map to operationalize the hospital's vision, has been a compelling paradigm to achieve significant QI results. The framework is simple yet directly aligns with the IOM domains of quality. It has inspired and helped actively engage hospital personnel in the work required to achieve the goals and vision of the hospital system. Five years after initiating this type of plan, activity is flourishing in each of the domains and midterm results are substantial. We think that the nature of this strategic plan has been an important aspect of our success to date.

  6. Inulin significantly improves serum magnesium levels in proton pump inhibitor-induced hypomagnesaemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hess, M W; de Baaij, J H F; Broekman, M; Bisseling, T M; Haarhuis, B; Tan, A; Te Morsche, R; Hoenderop, J G J; Bindels, R J M; Drenth, J P H

    2016-06-01

    Proton pump inhibitors (PPI) are among the most widely prescribed drugs to treat gastric acid-related disorders. PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia, a defect in intestinal absorption of Mg(2+) , can be a severe side effect of chronic PPI use. To restore serum Mg(2+) concentrations in PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia patients by dietary supplementation with inulin fibres. Eleven patients with PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia and 10 controls were treated with inulin (20 g/day). Each trial consisted of two cycles of 14-day inulin treatment followed by a washout period of 14 days. Patients continued to use their PPI. Serum Mg(2+) levels served as the primary endpoint. Inulin significantly enhanced serum Mg(2+) levels from 0.60 to 0.68 mmol/L in PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia patients, and from 0.84 to 0.93 mmol/L in controls. As a consequence 24 h urinary Mg(2+) excretion was significantly increased in patients with PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia (0.3-2.2 mmol/day). Symptoms related to hypomagnesaemia, including muscle cramps and paraesthesia, were reduced during intervention with inulin. Inulin increases serum Mg(2+) concentrations under PPI maintenance in patients with PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  7. Improving the physiological realism of experimental models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinnakota, Kalyan C; Cha, Chae Y; Rorsman, Patrik; Balaban, Robert S; La Gerche, Andre; Wade-Martins, Richard; Beard, Daniel A; Jeneson, Jeroen A L

    2016-04-06

    The Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) project aims to develop integrative, explanatory and predictive computational models (C-Models) as numerical investigational tools to study disease, identify and design effective therapies and provide an in silico platform for drug screening. Ultimately, these models rely on the analysis and integration of experimental data. As such, the success of VPH depends on the availability of physiologically realistic experimental models (E-Models) of human organ function that can be parametrized to test the numerical models. Here, the current state of suitable E-models, ranging from in vitro non-human cell organelles to in vivo human organ systems, is discussed. Specifically, challenges and recent progress in improving the physiological realism of E-models that may benefit the VPH project are highlighted and discussed using examples from the field of research on cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal disorders, diabetes and Parkinson's disease.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. High-intensity interval training (swimming) significantly improves the adverse metabolism and comorbidities in diet-induced obese mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motta, Victor F; Aguila, Marcia B; Mandarim-DE-Lacerda, Carlos A

    2016-05-01

    Controlling obesity and other comorbidities in the population is a challenge in modern society. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) combines short periods of high-intensity exercise with long recovery periods or a low-intensity exercise. The aim was to assess the impact of HIIT in the context of diet-induced obesity in the animal model. C57BL/6 mice were fed one of the two diets: standard chow (lean group [LE]) or a high-fat diet (obese group [OB]). After twelve weeks, the animals were divided into non-trained groups (LE-NT and OB-NT) and trained groups (LE-T and OB-T), and began an exercise protocol. For biochemical analysis of inflammatory and lipid profile, we used a colorimetric enzymatic method and an automatic spectrophotometer. One-way ANOVA was used for statistical analysis of the experimental groups with Holm-Sidak post-hoc Test. Two-way ANOVA analyzed the interactions between diet and HIIT protocol. HIIT leads to significant reductions in body mass, blood glucose, glucose tolerance and hepatic lipid profile in T-groups compared to NT-groups. HIIT was able to reduce plasma levels of inflammatory cytokines. Additionally, HIIT improves the insulin immunodensity in the islets, reduces the adiposity and the hepatic steatosis in the T-groups. HIIT improves beta-oxidation and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)-alpha and reduces lipogenesis and PPAR-gamma levels in the liver. In skeletal muscle, HIIT improves PPAR-alpha and glucose transporter-4 and reduces PPAR-gamma levels. HIIT leads to attenuate the adverse effects caused by a chronic ingestion of a high-fat diet.

  11. Significant improvement of pig cloning efficiency by treatment with LBH589 after somatic cell nuclear transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Jun-Xue; Li, Suo; Gao, Qing-Shan; Hong, Yu; Jin, Long; Zhu, Hai-Ying; Yan, Chang-Guo; Kang, Jin-Dan; Yin, Xi-Jun

    2013-10-01

    The low success rate of animal cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) associates with epigenetic aberrancy, including the abnormal acetylation of histones. Altering the epigenetic status by histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi) enhances the developmental potential of SCNT embryos. In the current study, we examined the effects of LBH589 (panobinostat), a novel broad-spectrum HDACi, on the nuclear reprogramming and development of pig SCNT embryos in vitro. In experiment 1, we compared the in vitro developmental competence of nuclear transfer embryos treated with different concentrations of LBH589. Embryos treated with 50 nM LBH589 for 24 hours showed a significant increase in the rate of blastocyst formation compared with the control or embryos treated with 5 or 500 nM LBH589 (32.4% vs. 11.8%, 12.1%, and 10.0%, respectively, P < 0.05). In experiment 2, we examined the in vitro developmental competence of nuclear transfer embryos treated with 50 nM LBH589 for various intervals after activation and 6-dimethylaminopurine. Embryos treated for 24 hours had higher rates of blastocyst formation than the other groups. In experiment 3, when the acetylation of H4K12 was examined in SCNT embryos treated for 6 hours with 50 nM LBH589 by immunohistochemistry, the staining intensities of these proteins in LBH589-treated SCNT embryos were significantly higher than in the control. In experiment 4, LBH589-treated nuclear transfer and control embryos were transferred into surrogate mothers, resulting in three (100%) and two (66.7%) pregnancies, respectively. In conclusion, LBH589 enhances the nuclear reprogramming and developmental potential of SCNT embryos by altering the epigenetic status and expression, and increasing blastocyst quality. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Silver chlorobromide nanocubes with significantly improved uniformity: synthesis and assembly into photonic crystals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Zheng; Okasinski, John S.; Gosztola, David J.; Ren, Yang; Sun, Yugang

    2015-01-01

    Silver chlorobromide (AgClxBr1-x, 0 < x < 1) nanocubes with a highly uniform size, morphology, and crystallinity have been successfully synthesized through a co-precipitation of Ag+ ions with both Cl- and Br- ions in ethylene glycol containing polyvinyl pyrrolidone at mild temperatures. Compositions of the synthesized nanocubes can be easily tuned by controlling the molar ratio of Cl- to Br- ions in the reaction solutions. The size of the nanocubes is determined by varying a number of parameters including the molar ratio of Cl- to Br- ions, injection rate of Ag+ ions, and reaction temperature. The real-time formation of colloidal AgClxBr1-x nanocubes has been monitored, for the first time, by in situ highenergy synchrotron X-ray diffraction. The time-resolved results reveal that a fast injection rate of Ag+ ions is critical for the formation of AgClxBr1-x nanocubes with a highly pure face-centered cubic crystalline phase. The improved uniformity of the AgClxBr1-x nanocubes is beneficial for assembling them into order superlattices (e.g., photonic crystals) even by simply applying centrifugation forces. The stop band of the resulting photonic crystals can be easily tuned from the ultraviolet to the infrared region by using AgClxBr1-x nanocubes with different sizes. The variation of the dielectric constant of AgClxBr1-x associated with the change of the relative concentration of halide ions provides an additional knob to tune the optical properties of photonic crystals.

  13. Analysis of significance of environmental factors in landslide susceptibility modeling: Case study Jemma drainage network, Ethiopia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vít Maca

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Aim of the paper is to describe methodology for calculating significance of environmental factors in landslide susceptibility modeling and present result of selected one. As a study area part of a Jemma basin in Ethiopian Highland is used. This locality is highly affected by mass movement processes. In the first part all major factors and their influence are described briefly. Majority of the work focuses on research of other methodologies used in susceptibility models and design of own methodology. This method is unlike most of the methods used completely objective, therefore it is not possible to intervene in the results. In article all inputs and outputs of the method are described as well as all stages of calculations. Results are illustrated on specific examples. In study area most important factor for landslide susceptibility is slope, on the other hand least important is land cover. At the end of article landslide susceptibility map is created. Part of the article is discussion of results and possible improvements of the methodology.

  14. An Improved Valuation Model for Technology Companies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ako Doffou

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper estimates some of the parameters of the Schwartz and Moon (2001 model using cross-sectional data. Stochastic costs, future financing, capital expenditures and depreciation are taken into account. Some special conditions are also set: the speed of adjustment parameters are equal; the implied half-life of the sales growth process is linked to analyst forecasts; and the risk-adjustment parameter is inferred from the company’s observed stock price beta. The model is illustrated in the valuation of Google, Amazon, eBay, Facebook and Yahoo. The improved model is far superior to the Schwartz and Moon (2001 model.

  15. Factors Related to Significant Improvement of Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rates in Chronic Hepatitis B Patients Receiving Telbivudine Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Te-Fu Lin

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background and Aim. The improvement of estimated glomerular filtration rates (eGFRs in chronic hepatitis B (CHB patients receiving telbivudine therapy is well known. The aim of this study was to clarify the kinetics of eGFRs and to identify the significant factors related to the improvement of eGFRs in telbivudine-treated CHB patients in a real-world setting. Methods. Serial eGFRs were calculated every 3 months using the Chronic Kidney Disease Epidemiology Collaboration (CKD-EPI equation. The patients were classified as CKD-1, -2, or -3 according to a baseline eGFR of ≥90, 60–89, or <60 mL/min/1.73 m2, respectively. A significant improvement of eGFR was defined as a more than 10% increase from the baseline. Results. A total of 129 patients were enrolled, of whom 36% had significantly improved eGFRs. According to a multivariate analysis, diabetes mellitus (DM (p=0.028 and CKD-3 (p=0.043 were both significantly related to such improvement. The rates of significant improvement of eGFR were about 73% and 77% in patients with DM and CKD-3, respectively. Conclusions. Telbivudine is an alternative drug of choice for the treatment of hepatitis B patients for whom renal safety is a concern, especially patients with DM and CKD-3.

  16. Single-atom catalysts for CO2electroreduction with significant activity and selectivity improvements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Back, Seoin; Lim, Juhyung; Kim, Na-Young; Kim, Yong-Hyun; Jung, Yousung

    2017-02-01

    A single-atom catalyst (SAC) has an electronic structure that is very different from its bulk counterparts, and has shown an unexpectedly high specific activity with a significant reduction in noble metal usage for CO oxidation, fuel cell and hydrogen evolution applications, although physical origins of such performance enhancements are still poorly understood. Herein, by means of density functional theory (DFT) calculations, we for the first time investigate the great potential of single atom catalysts for CO 2 electroreduction applications. In particular, we study a single transition metal atom anchored on defective graphene with single or double vacancies, denoted M@sv-Gr or M@dv-Gr, where M = Ag, Au, Co, Cu, Fe, Ir, Ni, Os, Pd, Pt, Rh or Ru, as a CO 2 reduction catalyst. Many SACs are indeed shown to be highly selective for the CO 2 reduction reaction over a competitive H 2 evolution reaction due to favorable adsorption of carboxyl (*COOH) or formate (*OCHO) over hydrogen (*H) on the catalysts. On the basis of free energy profiles, we identified several promising candidate materials for different products; Ni@dv-Gr (limiting potential U L = -0.41 V) and Pt@dv-Gr (-0.27 V) for CH 3 OH production, and Os@dv-Gr (-0.52 V) and Ru@dv-Gr (-0.52 V) for CH 4 production. In particular, the Pt@dv-Gr catalyst shows remarkable reduction in the limiting potential for CH 3 OH production compared to any existing catalysts, synthesized or predicted. To understand the origin of the activity enhancement of SACs, we find that the lack of an atomic ensemble for adsorbate binding and the unique electronic structure of the single atom catalysts as well as orbital interaction play an important role, contributing to binding energies of SACs that deviate considerably from the conventional scaling relation of bulk transition metals.

  17. Improvement of MARS code reflood model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hwang, Moonkyu; Chung, Bub-Dong

    2011-01-01

    A specifically designed heat transfer model for the reflood process which normally occurs at low flow and low pressure was originally incorporated in the MARS code. The model is essentially identical to that of the RELAP5/MOD3.3 code. The model, however, is known to have under-estimated the peak cladding temperature (PCT) with earlier turn-over. In this study, the original MARS code reflood model is improved. Based on the extensive sensitivity studies for both hydraulic and wall heat transfer models, it is found that the dispersed flow film boiling (DFFB) wall heat transfer is the most influential process determining the PCT, whereas the interfacial drag model most affects the quenching time through the liquid carryover phenomenon. The model proposed by Bajorek and Young is incorporated for the DFFB wall heat transfer. Both space grid and droplet enhancement models are incorporated. Inverted annular film boiling (IAFB) is modeled by using the original PSI model of the code. The flow transition between the DFFB and IABF, is modeled using the TRACE code interpolation. A gas velocity threshold is also added to limit the top-down quenching effect. Assessment calculations are performed for the original and modified MARS codes for the Flecht-Seaset test and RBHT test. Improvements are observed in terms of the PCT and quenching time predictions in the Flecht-Seaset assessment. In case of the RBHT assessment, the improvement over the original MARS code is found marginal. A space grid effect, however, is clearly seen from the modified version of the MARS code. (author)

  18. A Training Model for Improving Journalists' Voice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodero, Emma; Diaz-Rodriguez, Celia; Larrea, Olatz

    2017-06-06

    Voice education is a crucial aspect for professionals (journalists, teachers, politicians, actors, etc.) who use their voices as a working tool. The main concerns about such education are that, first, there is little awareness of the importance of voice education, and second there is little research devoted to it. The consequences of this lack of training are indeed visible in professionals who suffer voice pathologies or work with little effectiveness. This study seeks to overcome this deficiency by proposing a training model tested with a control group and a pilot study. Speech samples from a group of experimental participants-journalism students-were collected before and after a training course designed to improve their main vocal and prosodic features. These samples were contrasted with a control group without training. Results indicated significant differences in all tested voice elements (breathing, articulation, loudness, pitch, jitter, speech rate, pauses, and stress) except for shimmer and harmonics. The participants were able to enhance their main vocal and prosodic elements, and therefore their expressiveness maintaining optimal vocal hygiene. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. How Often Is the Misfit of Item Response Theory Models Practically Significant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinharay, Sandip; Haberman, Shelby J.

    2014-01-01

    Standard 3.9 of the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing ([, 1999]) demands evidence of model fit when item response theory (IRT) models are employed to data from tests. Hambleton and Han ([Hambleton, R. K., 2005]) and Sinharay ([Sinharay, S., 2005]) recommended the assessment of practical significance of misfit of IRT models, but…

  20. Improved reference models for middle atmosphere ozone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keating, G. M.; Pitts, M. C.; Chen, C.

    This paper describes the improvements introduced into the original version of ozone reference model of Keating and Young (1985, 1987) which is to be incorporated in the next COSPAR International Reference Atmosphere (CIRA). The ozone reference model will provide information on the global ozone distribution (including the ozone vertical structure as a function of month and latitude from 25 to 90 km) combining data from five recent satellite experiments: the Nimbus 7 LIMS, Nimbus 7 SBUV, AE-2 Stratospheric Aerosol Gas Experiment (SAGE), Solar Mesosphere Explorer (SME) UV Spectrometer, and SME 1.27 Micron Airglow. The improved version of the reference model uses reprocessed AE-2 SAGE data (sunset) and extends the use of SAGE data from 1981 to the 1981-1983 time period. Comparisons are presented between the results of this ozone model and various nonsatellite measurements at different levels in the middle atmosphere.

  1. Improvements to a nonequilibrium algebraic turbulence model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, D. A.; Coakley, T. J.

    1990-01-01

    It has been noted that while the nonequilibrium turbulence model of Johnson and King (1985, 1987) performed significantly better than alternative methods, differences between predicted and observed shock locations for certain weak interactions are produced due to a defficiency in the model's inner eddy viscosity formulation. A novel formulation for the model is presented which removes this deficiency, while satisfying the law of the wall for adverse pressure-gradient conditions better than either the original formulation or mixing-length theory.

  2. A Progressive 5-Week Exercise Therapy Program Leads to Significant Improvement in Knee Function Early After Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    EITZEN, INGRID; MOKSNES, HÅVARD; SNYDER-MACKLER, LYNN; RISBERG, MAY ARNA

    2011-01-01

    STUDY DESIGN Prospective cohort study without a control group. OBJECTIVES Firstly, to present our 5-week progressive exercise therapy program in the early stage after anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury. Secondly, to evaluate changes in knee function after completion of the program for patients with ACL injury in general and also when classified as potential copers or noncopers, and, finally, to examine potential adverse events. BACKGROUND Few studies concerning early-stage ACL rehabilitation protocols exist. Consequently, little is known about the tolerance for, and outcomes from, short-term exercise therapy programs in the early stage after injury. METHODS One-hundred patients were included in a 5-week progressive exercise therapy program, within 3 months after injury. Knee function before and after completion of the program was evaluated from isokinetic quadriceps and hamstrings muscle strength tests, 4 single-leg hop tests, 2 different self-assessment questionnaires, and a global rating of knee function. A 2-way mixed-model analysis of variance was conducted to evaluate changes from pretest to posttest for the limb symmetry index for muscle strength and single-leg hop tests, and the change in scores for the patient-reported questionnaires. In addition, absolute values and the standardized response mean for muscle strength and single-leg hop tests were calculated at pretest and posttest for the injured and uninjured limb. Adverse events during the 5-week period were recorded. RESULTS The progressive 5-week exercise therapy program led to significant improvements (Ptherapy programs are well tolerated and should be incorporated in early-stage ACL rehabilitation, either to improve knee function before ACL reconstruction or as a first step in further nonoperative management. PMID:20710097

  3. School Improvement Model to Foster Student Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rulloda, Rudolfo Barcena

    2011-01-01

    Many classroom teachers are still using the traditional teaching methods. The traditional teaching methods are one-way learning process, where teachers would introduce subject contents such as language arts, English, mathematics, science, and reading separately. However, the school improvement model takes into account that all students have…

  4. Improving Representational Competence with Concrete Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stieff, Mike; Scopelitis, Stephanie; Lira, Matthew E.; DeSutter, Dane

    2016-01-01

    Representational competence is a primary contributor to student learning in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines and an optimal target for instruction at all educational levels. We describe the design and implementation of a learning activity that uses concrete models to improve students' representational competence and…

  5. An optimization model for improving highway safety

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Promothes Saha

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper developed a traffic safety management system (TSMS for improving safety on county paved roads in Wyoming. TSMS is a strategic and systematic process to improve safety of roadway network. When funding is limited, it is important to identify the best combination of safety improvement projects to provide the most benefits to society in terms of crash reduction. The factors included in the proposed optimization model are annual safety budget, roadway inventory, roadway functional classification, historical crashes, safety improvement countermeasures, cost and crash reduction factors (CRFs associated with safety improvement countermeasures, and average daily traffics (ADTs. This paper demonstrated how the proposed model can identify the best combination of safety improvement projects to maximize the safety benefits in terms of reducing overall crash frequency. Although the proposed methodology was implemented on the county paved road network of Wyoming, it could be easily modified for potential implementation on the Wyoming state highway system. Other states can also benefit by implementing a similar program within their jurisdictions.

  6. Improved double Q2 rescaling model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao Yonghua

    2001-01-01

    The authors present an improved double Q 2 rescaling model. Based on this condition of the nuclear momentum conservation, the authors have found a Q 2 rescaling parameters' formula of the model, where authors have established the connection between the Q 2 rescaling parameter ζ i (i = v, s, g) and the mean binding energy in nucleus. By using this model, the authors coned explain the experimental data of the EMC effect in the whole x region, the nuclear Drell-Yan process and J/Ψ photoproduction process

  7. An improved model of equatorial scintillation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Secan, J. A.; Bussey, R. M.; Fremouw, E. J.; Basu, Sa.

    1995-05-01

    One of the main limitations of the modeling work that went into the equatorial section of the Wideband ionospheric scintillation model (WBMOD) was that the data set used in the modeling was limited to two stations near the dip equator (Ancon, Peru, and Kwajalein Island, in the North Pacific Ocean) at two fixed local times (nominally 1000 and 2200). Over the past year this section of the WBMOD model has been replaced by a model developed using data from three additional stations (Ascension Island, in the South Atlantic Ocean, Huancayo, Peru, and Manila, Phillipines; data collected under the auspices of the USAF Phillips Laboratory Geophysics Directorate) which provide a greater diversity in both latitude and longitude, as well as cover the entire day. The new model includes variations with latitude, local time, longitude, season, solar epoch, and geomagnetic activity levels. The way in which the irregularity strength parameter CkL is modeled has also been changed. The new model provides the variation of the full probability distribution function (PDF) of log (CkL) rather than simply the average of log (CkL). This permits the user to specify a threshold on scintillation level, and the model will calculate the percent of the time that scintillation will exceed that level in the user-specified scenario. It will also permit calculation of scintillation levels at a user-specified percentile. A final improvement to the WBMOD model is the implementation of a new theory for calculating S4 on a two-way channel.

  8. Process Correlation Analysis Model for Process Improvement Identification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Su-jin Choi

    2014-01-01

    software development process. However, in the current practice, correlations of process elements are often overlooked in the development of an improvement plan, which diminishes the efficiency of the plan. This is mainly attributed to significant efforts and the lack of required expertise. In this paper, we present a process correlation analysis model that helps identify correlations of process elements from the results of process assessment. This model is defined based on CMMI and empirical data of improvement practices. We evaluate the model using industrial data.

  9. Improvements in continuum modeling for biomolecular systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Qiao; Ben-Zhuo, Lu

    2016-01-01

    Modeling of biomolecular systems plays an essential role in understanding biological processes, such as ionic flow across channels, protein modification or interaction, and cell signaling. The continuum model described by the Poisson- Boltzmann (PB)/Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) equations has made great contributions towards simulation of these processes. However, the model has shortcomings in its commonly used form and cannot capture (or cannot accurately capture) some important physical properties of the biological systems. Considerable efforts have been made to improve the continuum model to account for discrete particle interactions and to make progress in numerical methods to provide accurate and efficient simulations. This review will summarize recent main improvements in continuum modeling for biomolecular systems, with focus on the size-modified models, the coupling of the classical density functional theory and the PNP equations, the coupling of polar and nonpolar interactions, and numerical progress. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 91230106) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences Program for Cross & Cooperative Team of the Science & Technology Innovation.

  10. Improved Inference of Heteroscedastic Fixed Effects Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afshan Saeed

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Heteroscedasticity is a stern problem that distorts estimation and testing of panel data model (PDM. Arellano (1987 proposed the White (1980 estimator for PDM with heteroscedastic errors but it provides erroneous inference for the data sets including high leverage points. In this paper, our attempt is to improve heteroscedastic consistent covariance matrix estimator (HCCME for panel dataset with high leverage points. To draw robust inference for the PDM, our focus is to improve kernel bootstrap estimators, proposed by Racine and MacKinnon (2007. The Monte Carlo scheme is used for assertion of the results.

  11. Significant uncertainty in global scale hydrological modeling from precipitation data erros

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sperna Weiland, F.; Vrugt, J.A.; Beek, van P.H.; Weerts, A.H.; Bierkens, M.F.P.

    2015-01-01

    In the past decades significant progress has been made in the fitting of hydrologic models to data. Most of this work has focused on simple, CPU-efficient, lumped hydrologic models using discharge, water table depth, soil moisture, or tracer data from relatively small river basins. In this paper, we

  12. Significant uncertainty in global scale hydrological modeling from precipitation data errors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weiland, Frederiek C. Sperna; Vrugt, Jasper A.; van Beek, Rens (L. ) P. H.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/14749799X; Weerts, Albrecht H.; Bierkens, Marc F. P.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/125022794

    2015-01-01

    In the past decades significant progress has been made in the fitting of hydrologic models to data. Most of this work has focused on simple, CPU-efficient, lumped hydrologic models using discharge, water table depth, soil moisture, or tracer data from relatively small river basins. In this paper, we

  13. Mapping the Most Significant Computer Hacking Events to a Temporal Computer Attack Model

    OpenAIRE

    Heerden , Renier ,; Pieterse , Heloise; Irwin , Barry

    2012-01-01

    Part 4: Section 3: ICT for Peace and War; International audience; This paper presents eight of the most significant computer hacking events (also known as computer attacks). These events were selected because of their unique impact, methodology, or other properties. A temporal computer attack model is presented that can be used to model computer based attacks. This model consists of the following stages: Target Identification, Reconnaissance, Attack, and Post-Attack Reconnaissance stages. The...

  14. Improving the realism of hydrologic model functioning through GRACE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rakovec, O.; Kumar, R.; Attinger, S.; Samaniego, L. E.

    2017-12-01

    Increased availability and quality of near real-time observations should improve understanding of predictive skills of hydrological models. Recent studies have shown the limited capability of river discharge data alone to adequately constrain different components of distributed model parameterizations. In this study, the GRACE satellite-based total water storage (TWS) anomaly is used to complement the discharge data with an aim to improve the fidelity of mesoscale hydrologic model (mHM) through multivariate parameter estimation. The study is conducted in 83 European basins covering a wide range of hydro-climatic regimes. The model parameterization complemented with the TWS anomalies leads to statistically significant improvements in (1) discharge simulations during low-flow period, and (2) evapotranspiration estimates which are evaluated against independent (FLUXNET) data. Overall, there is no significant deterioration in model performance for the discharge simulations when complemented by information from the TWS anomalies. However, considerable changes in the partitioning of precipitation into runoff components are noticed by in-/exclusion of TWS during the parameter estimation. A cross-validation test carried out to assess the transferability and robustness of the calibrated parameters to other locations further confirms the benefit of complementary TWS data. In particular, the evapotranspiration estimates show more robust performance when TWS data are incorporated during the parameter estimation, in comparison with the benchmark model constrained against discharge only. This study highlights the value for incorporating multiple data sources during parameter estimation to improve the overall realism of hydrologic model and its applications over large domains.

  15. A improved Network Security Situation Awareness Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Fangwei

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available In order to reflect the situation of network security assessment performance fully and accurately, a new network security situation awareness model based on information fusion was proposed. Network security situation is the result of fusion three aspects evaluation. In terms of attack, to improve the accuracy of evaluation, a situation assessment method of DDoS attack based on the information of data packet was proposed. In terms of vulnerability, a improved Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS was raised and maked the assessment more comprehensive. In terms of node weights, the method of calculating the combined weights and optimizing the result by Sequence Quadratic Program (SQP algorithm which reduced the uncertainty of fusion was raised. To verify the validity and necessity of the method, a testing platform was built and used to test through evaluating 2000 DAPRA data sets. Experiments show that the method can improve the accuracy of evaluation results.

  16. Natalizumab Significantly Improves Cognitive Impairment over Three Years in MS: Pattern of Disability Progression and Preliminary MRI Findings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia Mattioli

    Full Text Available Previous studies reported that Multiple Sclerosis (MS patients treated with natalizumab for one or two years exhibit a significant reduction in relapse rate and in cognitive impairment, but the long term effects on cognitive performance are unknown. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of natalizumab on cognitive impairment in a cohort of 24 consecutive patients with relapsing remitting MS treated for 3 years. The neuropsychological tests, as well as relapse number and EDSS, were assessed at baseline and yearly for three years. The impact on cortical atrophy was also considered in a subgroup of them, and are thus to be considered as preliminary. Results showed a significant reduction in the number of impaired neuropsychological tests after three years, a significant decrease in annualized relapse rate at each time points compared to baseline and a stable EDSS. In the neuropsychological assessment, a significant improvement in memory, attention and executive function test scores was detected. Preliminary MRI data show that, while GM volume did not change at 3 years, a significantly greater parahippocampal and prefrontal gray matter density was noticed, the former correlating with neuropsychological improvement in a memory test. This study showed that therapy with Natalizumab is helpful in improving cognitive performance, and is likely to have a protective role on grey matter, over a three years follow-up.

  17. Significance of predictive models/risk calculators for HBV-related hepatocellular carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DONG Jing

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Hepatitis B virus (HBV-related hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC is a major public health problem in Southeast Asia. In recent years, researchers from Hong Kong and Taiwan have reported predictive models or risk calculators for HBV-associated HCC by studying its natural history, which, to some extent, predicts the possibility of HCC development. Generally, risk factors of each model involve age, sex, HBV DNA level, and liver cirrhosis. This article discusses the evolution and clinical significance of currently used predictive models for HBV-associated HCC and assesses the advantages and limits of risk calculators. Updated REACH-B model and LSM-HCC model show better negative predictive values and have better performance in predicting the outcomes of patients with chronic hepatitis B (CHB. These models can be applied to stratified screening of HCC and, meanwhile, become an assessment tool for the management of CHB patients.

  18. A prognostic model for development of significant liver fibrosis in HIV-hepatitis C co-infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nasheed Moqueet

    Full Text Available Liver fibrosis progresses rapidly in HIV-Hepatitis C virus (HCV co-infected individuals partially due to heightened inflammation. Immune markers targeting stages of fibrogenesis could aid in prognosis of fibrosis.A case-cohort study was nested in the prospective Canadian Co-infection Cohort (n = 1119. HCV RNA positive individuals without fibrosis, end-stage liver disease or chronic Hepatitis B at baseline (n = 679 were eligible. A random subcohort (n = 236 was selected from those eligible. Pro-fibrogenic markers and Interferon Lambda (IFNL rs8099917 genotype were measured from first available sample in all fibrosis cases (APRI ≥ 1.5 during follow-up and the subcohort. We used Cox proportional hazards and compared Model 1 (selected clinical predictors only to Model 2 (Model 1 plus selected markers for predicting 3-year risk of liver fibrosis using weighted Harrell's C and Net Reclassification Improvement indices.113 individuals developed significant liver fibrosis over 1300 person-years (8.63 per 100 person-years 95% CI: 7.08, 10.60. Model 1 (age, sex, current alcohol use, HIV RNA, baseline APRI, HCV genotype was nested in model 2, which also included IFNL genotype and IL-8, sICAM-1, RANTES, hsCRP, and sCD14. The C indexes (95% CI for model 1 vs. model 2 were 0.720 (0.649, 0.791 and 0.756 (0.688, 0.825, respectively. Model 2 classified risk more appropriately (overall net reclassification improvement, p<0.05.Including IFNL genotype and inflammatory markers IL-8, sICAM-1, RANTES, hs-CRP, and sCD14 enabled better prediction of the 3-year risk of significant liver fibrosis over clinical predictors alone. Whether this modest improvement in prediction justifies their additional cost requires further cost-benefit analyses.

  19. Improving PSA quality of KSNP PSA model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang, Joon Eon; Ha, Jae Joo

    2004-01-01

    In the RIR (Risk-informed Regulation), PSA (Probabilistic Safety Assessment) plays a major role because it provides overall risk insights for the regulatory body and utility. Therefore, the scope, the level of details and the technical adequacy of PSA, i.e. the quality of PSA is to be ensured for the successful RIR. To improve the quality of Korean PSA, we evaluate the quality of the KSNP (Korean Standard Nuclear Power Plant) internal full-power PSA model based on the 'ASME PRA Standard' and the 'NEI PRA Peer Review Process Guidance.' As a working group, PSA experts of the regulatory body and industry also participated in the evaluation process. It is finally judged that the overall quality of the KSNP PSA is between the ASME Standard Capability Category I and II. We also derive some items to be improved for upgrading the quality of the PSA up to the ASME Standard Capability Category II. In this paper, we show the result of quality evaluation, and the activities to improve the quality of the KSNP PSA model

  20. Improving Bioenergy Crops through Dynamic Metabolic Modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mojdeh Faraji

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Enormous advances in genetics and metabolic engineering have made it possible, in principle, to create new plants and crops with improved yield through targeted molecular alterations. However, while the potential is beyond doubt, the actual implementation of envisioned new strains is often difficult, due to the diverse and complex nature of plants. Indeed, the intrinsic complexity of plants makes intuitive predictions difficult and often unreliable. The hope for overcoming this challenge is that methods of data mining and computational systems biology may become powerful enough that they could serve as beneficial tools for guiding future experimentation. In the first part of this article, we review the complexities of plants, as well as some of the mathematical and computational methods that have been used in the recent past to deepen our understanding of crops and their potential yield improvements. In the second part, we present a specific case study that indicates how robust models may be employed for crop improvements. This case study focuses on the biosynthesis of lignin in switchgrass (Panicum virgatum. Switchgrass is considered one of the most promising candidates for the second generation of bioenergy production, which does not use edible plant parts. Lignin is important in this context, because it impedes the use of cellulose in such inedible plant materials. The dynamic model offers a platform for investigating the pathway behavior in transgenic lines. In particular, it allows predictions of lignin content and composition in numerous genetic perturbation scenarios.

  1. Dietary information improves cardiovascular disease risk prediction models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baik, I; Cho, N H; Kim, S H; Shin, C

    2013-01-01

    Data are limited on cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk prediction models that include dietary predictors. Using known risk factors and dietary information, we constructed and evaluated CVD risk prediction models. Data for modeling were from population-based prospective cohort studies comprised of 9026 men and women aged 40-69 years. At baseline, all were free of known CVD and cancer, and were followed up for CVD incidence during an 8-year period. We used Cox proportional hazard regression analysis to construct a traditional risk factor model, an office-based model, and two diet-containing models and evaluated these models by calculating Akaike information criterion (AIC), C-statistics, integrated discrimination improvement (IDI), net reclassification improvement (NRI) and calibration statistic. We constructed diet-containing models with significant dietary predictors such as poultry, legumes, carbonated soft drinks or green tea consumption. Adding dietary predictors to the traditional model yielded a decrease in AIC (delta AIC=15), a 53% increase in relative IDI (P-value for IDI NRI (category-free NRI=0.14, P NRI (category-free NRI=0.08, P<0.01) compared with the office-based model. The calibration plots for risk prediction demonstrated that the inclusion of dietary predictors contributes to better agreement in persons at high risk for CVD. C-statistics for the four models were acceptable and comparable. We suggest that dietary information may be useful in constructing CVD risk prediction models.

  2. Significance of categorization and the modeling of age related factors for radiation protection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Matsuoka, Osamu

    1987-01-01

    It is proposed that the categorization and modelling are necessary with regard to age related factors of radionuclide metabolism for the radiation protection of the public. In order to utilize the age related information as a model for life time risk estimate of public, it is necessary to generalize and simplify it according to the categorized model patterns. Since the patterns of age related changes in various parameters of radionuclide metabolism seem to be rather simple, it is possible to categorize them into eleven types of model patterns. Among these models, five are selected as positively significant models to be considered. Examples are shown as to the fitting of representative parameters of both physiological and metabolic parameter of radionuclides into the proposed model. The range of deviation from adult standard value is also analyzed for each model. The fitting of each parameter to categorized models, and its comparative consideration provide the effective information as to the physiological basis of radionuclide metabolism. Discussions are made on the problems encountered in the application of available age related information to radiation protection of the public, i.e. distribution of categorized parameter, period of life covered, range of deviation from adult value, implication to other dosimetric and pathological models and to the final estimation. 5 refs.; 3 figs.; 4 tabs

  3. The cumulative effect of small dietary changes may significantly improve nutritional intakes in free-living children and adults

    OpenAIRE

    Bornet , Francis; Paineau , Damien; Beaufils , François; Boulier , Alain; Cassuto , Dominique-Adèle; Chwalow , Judith; Combris , Pierre; Couet , Charles; Jouret , Béatrice; Lafay , Lionel; Laville , Martine; Mahé , Sylvain; Ricour , Claude; Romon , Monique; Simon , Chantal

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background/Objectives: The ELPAS study was an 8-month randomized controlled dietary modification trial designed to test the hypothesis that family dietary coaching would improve nutritional intakes and weight control in 2026 free-living children and parents (Paineau et al., 2008). It resulted in significant nutritional changes, with beneficial effects on body mass index in adults. In these ancillary analyses, we investigated dietary changes throughout the intervention. ...

  4. Improving the realism of hydrologic model through multivariate parameter estimation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rakovec, Oldrich; Kumar, Rohini; Attinger, Sabine; Samaniego, Luis

    2017-04-01

    Increased availability and quality of near real-time observations should improve understanding of predictive skills of hydrological models. Recent studies have shown the limited capability of river discharge data alone to adequately constrain different components of distributed model parameterizations. In this study, the GRACE satellite-based total water storage (TWS) anomaly is used to complement the discharge data with an aim to improve the fidelity of mesoscale hydrologic model (mHM) through multivariate parameter estimation. The study is conducted in 83 European basins covering a wide range of hydro-climatic regimes. The model parameterization complemented with the TWS anomalies leads to statistically significant improvements in (1) discharge simulations during low-flow period, and (2) evapotranspiration estimates which are evaluated against independent (FLUXNET) data. Overall, there is no significant deterioration in model performance for the discharge simulations when complemented by information from the TWS anomalies. However, considerable changes in the partitioning of precipitation into runoff components are noticed by in-/exclusion of TWS during the parameter estimation. A cross-validation test carried out to assess the transferability and robustness of the calibrated parameters to other locations further confirms the benefit of complementary TWS data. In particular, the evapotranspiration estimates show more robust performance when TWS data are incorporated during the parameter estimation, in comparison with the benchmark model constrained against discharge only. This study highlights the value for incorporating multiple data sources during parameter estimation to improve the overall realism of hydrologic model and its applications over large domains. Rakovec, O., Kumar, R., Attinger, S. and Samaniego, L. (2016): Improving the realism of hydrologic model functioning through multivariate parameter estimation. Water Resour. Res., 52, http://dx.doi.org/10

  5. ARMA modeling of stochastic processes in nuclear reactor with significant detection noise

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zavaljevski, N.

    1992-01-01

    The theoretical basis of ARMA modelling of stochastic processes in nuclear reactor was presented in a previous paper, neglecting observational noise. The identification of real reactor data indicated that in some experiments the detection noise is significant. Thus a more rigorous theoretical modelling of stochastic processes in nuclear reactor is performed. Starting from the fundamental stochastic differential equations of the Langevin type for the interaction of the detector with neutron field, a new theoretical ARMA model is developed. preliminary identification results confirm the theoretical expectations. (author)

  6. Process correlation analysis model for process improvement identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Su-jin; Kim, Dae-Kyoo; Park, Sooyong

    2014-01-01

    Software process improvement aims at improving the development process of software systems. It is initiated by process assessment identifying strengths and weaknesses and based on the findings, improvement plans are developed. In general, a process reference model (e.g., CMMI) is used throughout the process of software process improvement as the base. CMMI defines a set of process areas involved in software development and what to be carried out in process areas in terms of goals and practices. Process areas and their elements (goals and practices) are often correlated due to the iterative nature of software development process. However, in the current practice, correlations of process elements are often overlooked in the development of an improvement plan, which diminishes the efficiency of the plan. This is mainly attributed to significant efforts and the lack of required expertise. In this paper, we present a process correlation analysis model that helps identify correlations of process elements from the results of process assessment. This model is defined based on CMMI and empirical data of improvement practices. We evaluate the model using industrial data.

  7. Strategies for Testing Statistical and Practical Significance in Detecting DIF with Logistic Regression Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fidalgo, Angel M.; Alavi, Seyed Mohammad; Amirian, Seyed Mohammad Reza

    2014-01-01

    This study examines three controversial aspects in differential item functioning (DIF) detection by logistic regression (LR) models: first, the relative effectiveness of different analytical strategies for detecting DIF; second, the suitability of the Wald statistic for determining the statistical significance of the parameters of interest; and…

  8. Improved modeling techniques for turbomachinery flow fields

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lakshminarayana, B.; Fagan, J.R. Jr.

    1995-12-31

    This program has the objective of developing an improved methodology for modeling turbomachinery flow fields, including the prediction of losses and efficiency. Specifically, the program addresses the treatment of the mixing stress tensor terms attributed to deterministic flow field mechanisms required in steady-state Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) models for turbomachinery flow fields. These mixing stress tensors arise due to spatial and temporal fluctuations (in an absolute frame of reference) caused by rotor-stator interaction due to various blade rows and by blade-to-blade variation of flow properties. This will be accomplished in a cooperative program by Penn State University and the Allison Engine Company. These tasks include the acquisition of previously unavailable experimental data in a high-speed turbomachinery environment, the use of advanced techniques to analyze the data, and the development of a methodology to treat the deterministic component of the mixing stress tenor.

  9. Continuous Flow Left Ventricular Assist Device Implant Significantly Improves Pulmonary Hypertension, Right Ventricular Contractility, and Tricuspid Valve Competence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atluri, Pavan; Fairman, Alexander S.; MacArthur, John W.; Goldstone, Andrew B.; Cohen, Jeffrey E.; Howard, Jessica L.; Zalewski, Christyna M.; Shudo, Yasuhiro; Woo, Y. Joseph

    2014-01-01

    Background Continuous flow left ventricular assist devices (CF LVAD) are being implanted with increasing frequency for end-stage heart failure. At the time of LVAD implant, a large proportion of patients have pulmonary hypertension, right ventricular (RV) dysfunction, and tricuspid regurgitation (TR). RV dysfunction and TR can exacerbate renal dysfunction, hepatic dysfunction, coagulopathy, edema, and even prohibit isolated LVAD implant. Repairing TR mandates increased cardiopulmonary bypass time and bicaval cannulation, which should be reserved for the time of orthotopic heart transplantation. We hypothesized that CF LVAD implant would improve pulmonary artery pressures, enhance RV function, and minimize TR, obviating need for surgical tricuspid repair. Methods One hundred fourteen continuous flow LVADs implanted from 2005 through 2011 at a single center, with medical management of functional TR, were retrospectively analyzed. Pulmonary artery pressures were measured immediately prior to and following LVAD implant. RV function and TR were graded according to standard echocardiographic criteria, prior to, immediately following, and long-term following LVAD. Results There was a significant improvement in post-VAD mean pulmonary arterial pressures (26.6 ± 4.9 vs. 30.2 ± 7.4 mmHg, p = 0.008) with equivalent loading pressures (CVP = 12.0 ± 4.0 vs. 12.1 ± 5.1 p = NS). RV function significantly improved, as noted by right ventricular stroke work index (7.04 ± 2.60 vs. 6.05 ± 2.54, p = 0.02). There was an immediate improvement in TR grade and RV function following LVAD implant, which was sustained long term. Conclusion Continuous flow LVAD implant improves pulmonary hypertension, RV function, and tricuspid regurgitation. TR may be managed nonoperatively during CF LVAD implant. PMID:24118109

  10. Improved simulation of groundwater - surface water interaction in catchment models

    Science.gov (United States)

    teklesadik, aklilu; van Griensven, Ann; Anibas, Christian; Huysmans, Marijke

    2016-04-01

    Groundwater storage can have a significant contribution to stream flow, therefore a thorough understanding of the groundwater surface water interaction is of prime important when doing catchment modeling. The aim of this study is to improve the simulation of groundwater - surface water interaction in a catchment model of the upper Zenne River basin located in Belgium. To achieve this objective we used the "Groundwater-Surface water Flow" (GSFLOW) modeling software, which is an integration of the surface water modeling tool "Precipitation and Runoff Modeling system" (PRMS) and the groundwater modeling tool MODFLOW. For this case study, the PRMS model and MODFLOW model were built and calibrated independently. The PRMS upper Zenne River basin model is divided into 84 hydrological response units (HRUs) and is calibrated with flow data at the Tubize gauging station. The spatial discretization of the MODFLOW upper Zenne groundwater flow model consists of 100m grids. Natural groundwater divides and the Brussels-Charleroi canal are used as boundary conditions for the MODFLOW model. The model is calibrated using piezometric data. The GSFLOW results were evaluated against a SWAT model application and field observations of groundwater-surface water interactions along a cross section of the Zenne River and riparian zone. The field observations confirm that there is no exchange of groundwater beyond the Brussel-Charleroi canal and that the interaction at the river bed is relatively low. The results show that there is a significant difference in the groundwater simulations when using GSFLOW versus SWAT. This indicates that the groundwater component representation in the SWAT model could be improved and that a more realistic implementation of the interactions between groundwater and surface water is advisable. This could be achieved by integrating SWAT and MODFLOW.

  11. Improving Marine Ecosystem Models with Biochemical Tracers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pethybridge, Heidi R.; Choy, C. Anela; Polovina, Jeffrey J.; Fulton, Elizabeth A.

    2018-01-01

    Empirical data on food web dynamics and predator-prey interactions underpin ecosystem models, which are increasingly used to support strategic management of marine resources. These data have traditionally derived from stomach content analysis, but new and complementary forms of ecological data are increasingly available from biochemical tracer techniques. Extensive opportunities exist to improve the empirical robustness of ecosystem models through the incorporation of biochemical tracer data and derived indices, an area that is rapidly expanding because of advances in analytical developments and sophisticated statistical techniques. Here, we explore the trophic information required by ecosystem model frameworks (species, individual, and size based) and match them to the most commonly used biochemical tracers (bulk tissue and compound-specific stable isotopes, fatty acids, and trace elements). Key quantitative parameters derived from biochemical tracers include estimates of diet composition, niche width, and trophic position. Biochemical tracers also provide powerful insight into the spatial and temporal variability of food web structure and the characterization of dominant basal and microbial food web groups. A major challenge in incorporating biochemical tracer data into ecosystem models is scale and data type mismatches, which can be overcome with greater knowledge exchange and numerical approaches that transform, integrate, and visualize data.

  12. Modeling soil water content for vegetation modeling improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cianfrani, Carmen; Buri, Aline; Zingg, Barbara; Vittoz, Pascal; Verrecchia, Eric; Guisan, Antoine

    2016-04-01

    Soil water content (SWC) is known to be important for plants as it affects the physiological processes regulating plant growth. Therefore, SWC controls plant distribution over the Earth surface, ranging from deserts and grassland to rain forests. Unfortunately, only a few data on SWC are available as its measurement is very time consuming and costly and needs specific laboratory tools. The scarcity of SWC measurements in geographic space makes it difficult to model and spatially project SWC over larger areas. In particular, it prevents its inclusion in plant species distribution model (SDMs) as predictor. The aims of this study were, first, to test a new methodology allowing problems of the scarcity of SWC measurements to be overpassed and second, to model and spatially project SWC in order to improve plant SDMs with the inclusion of SWC parameter. The study was developed in four steps. First, SWC was modeled by measuring it at 10 different pressures (expressed in pF and ranging from pF=0 to pF=4.2). The different pF represent different degrees of soil water availability for plants. An ensemble of bivariate models was built to overpass the problem of having only a few SWC measurements (n = 24) but several predictors to include in the model. Soil texture (clay, silt, sand), organic matter (OM), topographic variables (elevation, aspect, convexity), climatic variables (precipitation) and hydrological variables (river distance, NDWI) were used as predictors. Weighted ensemble models were built using only bivariate models with adjusted-R2 > 0.5 for each SWC at different pF. The second step consisted in running plant SDMs including modeled SWC jointly with the conventional topo-climatic variable used for plant SDMs. Third, SDMs were only run using the conventional topo-climatic variables. Finally, comparing the models obtained in the second and third steps allowed assessing the additional predictive power of SWC in plant SDMs. SWC ensemble models remained very good, with

  13. Modeling a Sensor to Improve Its Efficacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nabin K. Malakar

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Robots rely on sensors to provide them with information about their surroundings. However, high-quality sensors can be extremely expensive and cost-prohibitive. Thus many robotic systems must make due with lower-quality sensors. Here we demonstrate via a case study how modeling a sensor can improve its efficacy when employed within a Bayesian inferential framework. As a test bed we employ a robotic arm that is designed to autonomously take its own measurements using an inexpensive LEGO light sensor to estimate the position and radius of a white circle on a black field. The light sensor integrates the light arriving from a spatially distributed region within its field of view weighted by its spatial sensitivity function (SSF. We demonstrate that by incorporating an accurate model of the light sensor SSF into the likelihood function of a Bayesian inference engine, an autonomous system can make improved inferences about its surroundings. The method presented here is data based, fairly general, and made with plug-and-play in mind so that it could be implemented in similar problems.

  14. Improvement of the design model for SMART fuel assembly

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zee, Sung Kyun; Yim, Jeong Sik

    2001-04-01

    A Study on the design improvement of the TEP, BEP and Hoddown spring of a fuel assembly for SMART was performed. Cut boundary Interpolation Method was applied to get more accurate results of stress and strain distribution from the results of the coarse model calculation. The improved results were compared with that of a coarse one. The finer model predicted slightly higher stress and strain distribution than the coarse model, which meant the results of the coarse model was not converged. Considering that the test results always showed much less stress than the FEM and the location of the peak stress of the refined model, the pressure stress on the loading point seemed to contribute significantly to the stresses. Judging from the fact that the peak stress appeared only at the local area, the results of the refined model were considered enough to be a conservative prediction of the stress levels. The slot of the guide thimble screw was ignored to get how much thickness of the flow plate can be reduced in case of optimization of the thickness and also cut off the screw dent hole was included for the actual geometry. For the BEP, the leg and web were also included in the model and the results with and without the leg alignment support were compared. Finally, the holddown spring which is important during the in-reactor behavior of the FA was modeled more realistic and improved to include the effects of the friction between the leaves and the loading surface. Using this improved model, it was possible that the spring characteristics were predicted more accurate to the test results. From the analysis of the spring characteristics, the local plastic area controled the characteristics of the spring dominantly which implied that it was necessary for the design of the leaf to be optimized for the improvement of the plastic behavior of the leaf spring

  15. Significant improvement of a clinical training course in physical examination after basic structural changes in the teaching content and methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonne, Carolin; Vogelmann, Roger; Lesevic, H; Bott-Flügel, Lorenz; Ott, I; Seyfarth, Melchior

    2013-01-01

    Regular student evaluations at the Technical University Munich indicate the necessity for improvement of the clinical examination course. The aim of this study was to examine if targeted measures to restructure and improve a clinical examination course session lead to a higher level of student satisfaction as well as better self-assessment of the acquired techniques of clinical examination. At three medical departments of the Technical University Munich during the 2010 summer semester, the quantitative results of 49 student evaluations (ratings 1-6, German scholastic grading system) of the clinical examination course were compared for a course before and a course after structured measures for improvement. These measures included structured teaching instructions, handouts and additional material from the Internet. 47 evaluations were completed before and 34 evaluations after the measures for improvement. The measures named above led to a significant improvement of the evaluative ratings in the following areas: short introduction to the topic of each clinical examination course (from 2.4±1.2 to1.7±1.0; p=0.0020) and to basic measures of hygiene (from 3.8±1.9 to 2.5±1.8; p=0.004), structured demonstration of each clinical examination step (from 2.9±1.5 to 1.8±1.0; p=0.001), sufficient practice of each clinical examination step (from 3.1±1.8 to 2.2±1.4; p=0.030) structured feedback on each clinical examination step (from 3.0±1.4 to 2.3±1.0; p=0.0070), use of handouts (from 5.2±1.4 to 1.8±1.4; plearning material (from 5.0±1.4 to 3.4±2.0; plearning experience (from 2.4±0.9 to 1.9±0.8; p=0.017), and self-assessment of the acquired techniques of clinical examination (from 3.5±1.3 to 2.5±1.1; p<0.01). Structured changes led to significant improvement in the evaluative ratings of a clinical examination course session concerning preparation of the tutors, structure of the course, and confidence in performing physical examinations.

  16. An improved squirmer model for Volvox locomotion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedley, Timothy

    2017-11-01

    We recently used the Lighthill-Blake envelope (or `squirmer') model for ciliary propulsion to predict the mean swimming speed U and angular velocity Ω of spherical Volvox colonies. Input was the measured flagellar beating patterns (a symplectic metachronal wave) of Volvox colonies with different radii a. The predictions were compared with independent measurements of U and Ω as functions of a, and proved to be substantial underestimates of both U and Ω, by about 80%, probably because the envelope model ignores the fact that, during the recovery stroke, most of a flagellum is much closer to the no-slip colony surface than during the power stroke. In consequence U and Ω will be proportional to the beating amplitude ɛ not to ɛ2 as in the Lighthill-Blake theory. A new model is proposed, based on a shear-stress (not velocity) distribution (cf) that is applied at a smaller radius in the recovery stroke than in the power stroke. Agreement with experiment is greatly improved.

  17. Improved choked flow model for MARS code

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chung, Moon Sun; Lee, Won Jae; Ha, Kwi Seok; Hwang, Moon Kyu

    2002-01-01

    Choked flow calculation is improved by using a new sound speed criterion for bubbly flow that is derived by the characteristic analysis of hyperbolic two-fluid model. This model was based on the notion of surface tension for the interfacial pressure jump terms in the momentum equations. Real eigenvalues obtained as the closed-form solution of characteristic polynomial represent the sound speed in the bubbly flow regime that agrees well with the existing experimental data. The present sound speed shows more reasonable result in the extreme case than the Nguyens did. The present choked flow criterion derived by the present sound speed is employed in the MARS code and assessed by using the Marviken choked flow tests. The assessment results without any adjustment made by some discharge coefficients demonstrate more accurate predictions of choked flow rate in the bubbly flow regime than those of the earlier choked flow calculations. By calculating the Typical PWR (SBLOCA) problem, we make sure that the present model can reproduce the reasonable transients of integral reactor system

  18. Improving hydrological simulations by incorporating GRACE data for model calibration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Peng; Liu, Xiaomang; Liu, Changming

    2018-02-01

    Hydrological model parameters are typically calibrated by observed streamflow data. This calibration strategy is questioned when the simulated hydrological variables of interest are not limited to streamflow. Well-performed streamflow simulations do not guarantee the reliable reproduction of other hydrological variables. One of the reasons is that hydrological model parameters are not reasonably identified. The Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE)-derived total water storage change (TWSC) data provide an opportunity to constrain hydrological model parameterizations in combination with streamflow observations. In this study, a multi-objective calibration scheme based on GRACE-derived TWSC and streamflow observations was compared with the traditional single-objective calibration scheme based on only streamflow simulations. Two hydrological models were employed on 22 catchments in China with different climatic conditions. The model evaluations were performed using observed streamflows, GRACE-derived TWSC, and actual evapotranspiration (ET) estimates from flux towers and from the water balance approach. Results showed that the multi-objective calibration scheme provided more reliable TWSC and ET simulations without significant deterioration in the accuracy of streamflow simulations than the single-objective calibration. The improvement in TWSC and ET simulations was more significant in relatively dry catchments than in relatively wet catchments. In addition, hydrological models calibrated using GRACE-derived TWSC data alone cannot obtain accurate runoff simulations in ungauged catchments. This study highlights the importance of including additional constraints in addition to streamflow observations to improve performances of hydrological models.

  19. Field significance of performance measures in the context of regional climate model evaluation. Part 2: precipitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanov, Martin; Warrach-Sagi, Kirsten; Wulfmeyer, Volker

    2018-04-01

    A new approach for rigorous spatial analysis of the downscaling performance of regional climate model (RCM) simulations is introduced. It is based on a multiple comparison of the local tests at the grid cells and is also known as `field' or `global' significance. The block length for the local resampling tests is precisely determined to adequately account for the time series structure. New performance measures for estimating the added value of downscaled data relative to the large-scale forcing fields are developed. The methodology is exemplarily applied to a standard EURO-CORDEX hindcast simulation with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model coupled with the land surface model NOAH at 0.11 ∘ grid resolution. Daily precipitation climatology for the 1990-2009 period is analysed for Germany for winter and summer in comparison with high-resolution gridded observations from the German Weather Service. The field significance test controls the proportion of falsely rejected local tests in a meaningful way and is robust to spatial dependence. Hence, the spatial patterns of the statistically significant local tests are also meaningful. We interpret them from a process-oriented perspective. While the downscaled precipitation distributions are statistically indistinguishable from the observed ones in most regions in summer, the biases of some distribution characteristics are significant over large areas in winter. WRF-NOAH generates appropriate stationary fine-scale climate features in the daily precipitation field over regions of complex topography in both seasons and appropriate transient fine-scale features almost everywhere in summer. As the added value of global climate model (GCM)-driven simulations cannot be smaller than this perfect-boundary estimate, this work demonstrates in a rigorous manner the clear additional value of dynamical downscaling over global climate simulations. The evaluation methodology has a broad spectrum of applicability as it is

  20. Significance of Various Experimental Models and Assay Techniques in Cancer Diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghanghoria, Raksha; Kesharwani, Prashant; Jain, Narendra K

    2017-01-01

    The experimental models are of vital significance to provide information regarding biological as well as genetic factors that control the phenotypic characteristics of the disease and serve as the foundation for the development of rational intervention stratagem. This review highlights the importance of experimental models in the field of cancer management. The process of pathogenesis in cancer progression, invasion and metastasis can be successfully explained by employing clinically relevant laboratory models of the disease. Cancer cell lines have been used extensively to monitor the process of cancer pathogenesis process by controlling growth regulation and chemo-sensitivity for the evaluation of novel therapeutics in both in vitro and xenograft models. The experimental models have been used for the elaboration of diagnostic or therapeutic protocols, and thus employed in preclinical studies of bioactive agents relevant for cancer prevention. The outcome of this review should provide useful information in understanding and selection of various models in accordance with the stage of cancer. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  1. Scoping review identifies significant number of knowledge translation theories, models and frameworks with limited use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strifler, Lisa; Cardoso, Roberta; McGowan, Jessie; Cogo, Elise; Nincic, Vera; Khan, Paul A; Scott, Alistair; Ghassemi, Marco; MacDonald, Heather; Lai, Yonda; Treister, Victoria; Tricco, Andrea C; Straus, Sharon E

    2018-04-13

    To conduct a scoping review of knowledge translation (KT) theories, models and frameworks that have been used to guide dissemination or implementation of evidence-based interventions targeted to prevention and/or management of cancer or other chronic diseases. We used a comprehensive multistage search process from 2000-2016, which included traditional bibliographic database searching, searching using names of theories, models and frameworks, and cited reference searching. Two reviewers independently screened the literature and abstracted data. We found 596 studies reporting on the use of 159 KT theories, models or frameworks. A majority (87%) of the identified theories, models or frameworks were used in five or fewer studies, with 60% used once. The theories, models and frameworks were most commonly used to inform planning/design, implementation and evaluation activities, and least commonly used to inform dissemination and sustainability/scalability activities. Twenty-six were used across the full implementation spectrum (from planning/design to sustainability/scalability) either within or across studies. All were used for at least individual-level behavior change, while 48% were used for organization-level, 33% for community-level and 17% for system-level change. We found a significant number of KT theories, models and frameworks with a limited evidence base describing their use. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. Improved regional climate modelling through dynamical downscaling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Corney, Stuart; Grose, Michael; Holz, Greg; White, Chris; Bennett, James; Gaynor, Suzie; Bindoff, Nathan; Katzfey, Jack; McGregor, John

    2010-01-01

    Coupled Ocean-Atmosphere General Circulation Models (GCMs) provide the best estimates for assessing potential changes to our climate on a global scale out to the end of this century. Because coupled GCMs have a fairly coarse resolution they do not provide a detailed picture of climate (and climate change) at the local scale. Tasmania, due to its diverse geography and range of climate over a small area is a particularly difficult region for drawing conclusions regarding climate change when relying solely on GCMs. The foundation of the Climate Futures for Tasmania project is to take the output produced by multiple GCMs, using multiple climate change scenarios, and use this output as input into the Conformal Cubic Atmospheric Model (CCAM) to downscale the GCM output. CCAM is a full atmospheric global general circulation model, formulated using a conformal-cubic grid that covers the globe but can be stretched to provide higher resolution in the area of interest (Tasmania). By modelling the atmosphere at a much finer scale than is possible using a coupled GCM we can more accurately capture the processes that drive Tasmania's weather/climate, and thus can more clearly answer the question of how Tasmania's climate will change in the future. We present results that show the improvements in capturing the local-scale climate and climate drivers that can be achieved through downscaling, when compared to a gridded observational data set. The underlying assumption of this work is that a better simulated current climatology will also produce a more credible climate change signal.

  3. CORCON-MOD1 modelling improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Corradini, M.L.; Gonzales, F.G.; Vandervort, C.L.

    1986-01-01

    Given the unlikely occurrence of a severe accident in a light water reactor (LWR), the core may melt and slump into the reactor cavity below the reactor vessel. The interaction of the molten core with exposed concrete (a molten-core-concrete-interaction, MCCI) causes copious gas production which influences further heat transfer and concrete attack and may threaten containment integrity. In this paper the authors focus on the low-temperature phase of the MCCI where the molten pool is partially solidified, but is still capable of attacking concrete. The authors have developed some improved phenomenological models for pool freezing and molten core-coolant heat transfer and have incorporated them into the CORCON-MOD1 computer program. In the paper the authors compare the UW-CORCON/MOD1 calculations to CORCON/MOD2 and WECHSL results as well as the BETA experiments which are being conducted in Germany

  4. Improvements to type Ia supernova models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saunders, Clare M.

    Type Ia Supernovae provided the first strong evidence of dark energy and are still an important tool for measuring the accelerated expansion of the universe. However, future improvements will be limited by systematic uncertainties in our use of Type Ia supernovae as standard candles. Using Type Ia supernovae for cosmology relies on our ability to standardize their absolute magnitudes, but this relies on imperfect models of supernova spectra time series. This thesis is focused on using data from the Nearby Supernova Factory both to understand current sources of uncertainty in standardizing Type Ia supernovae and to develop techniques that can be used to limit uncertainty in future analyses. (Abstract shortened by ProQuest.).

  5. A comprehensive track model for the improvement of corrugation models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez, J.; Vadillo, E. G.; Santamaría, J.

    2006-06-01

    This paper presents a detailed model of the railway track based on wave propagation, suitable for corrugation studies. The model analyses both the vertical and the transverse dynamics of the track. Using the finite strip method (FSM), only the cross-section of the rail must be meshed, and thus it is not necessary to discretise a whole span in 3D. This model takes into account the discrete nature of the support, introducing concepts pertaining to the theory of periodic structures in the formulation. Wave superposition is enriched taking into account the contribution of residual vectors. In this way, the model obtains accurate results when a finite section of railway track is considered. Results for the infinite track have been compared against those presented by Gry and Müller. Aside from the improvements provided by the model presented in this paper, which Gry's and Müller's models do not contemplate, the results arising from the comparison prove satisfactory. Finally, the calculated receptances are compared against the experimental values obtained by the authors, demonstrating a fair degree of adequacy. Finally, these receptances are used within a linear model of corrugation developed by the authors.

  6. Genetic counselling in parents of children with congenital heart disease significantly improves knowledge about causation and enhances psychosocial functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blue, Gillian M; Kasparian, Nadine A; Sholler, Gary F; Kirk, Edwin P; Winlaw, David S

    2015-01-15

    One of the key questions asked by parents of children with congenital heart disease (CHD) is 'why' and 'how did this happen?'. Receiving more information in response to these questions is therefore important to parents. This study sought to assess the efficacy of individualised genetic counselling sessions in improving knowledge of causation and psychosocial functioning in parents of children with CHD. Parents of children undergoing surgery for CHD were offered individualised genetic counselling during their child's hospital admission. Assessments occurred at three time-points (immediately pre-, immediately post-, and two months post-session) using questionnaires comprising a purpose-designed knowledge measure, as well as validated psychological measures. Of the 94 participants approached, 57 attended the genetic counselling session (participation rate=60.6%). Knowledge scores for the participants who completed all three questionnaires improved significantly from pre- (x¯=7.38/16, SD=3.53) to post-session (x¯=13.33/16, SD=2.82) (pgenetic counselling sessions were highly beneficial to parents of children with CHD in regards to improving knowledge about the causes of CHD and enhancing psychosocial functioning, and should be considered as part of 'best care' practices. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Improving growth and productivity of Oleiferous Brassicas under changing environment: significance of nitrogen and sulphur nutrition, and underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anjum, Naser A; Gill, Sarvajeet S; Umar, Shahid; Ahmad, Iqbal; Duarte, Armando C; Pereira, Eduarda

    2012-01-01

    Mineral nutrients are the integral part of the agricultural systems. Among important plant nutrients, nitrogen (N) and sulphur (S) are known essential elements for growth, development, and various physiological functions in plants. Oleiferous brassicas (rapeseed and mustard) require higher amounts of S in addition to N for optimum growth and yield. Therefore, balancing S-N fertilization, optimization of nutrient replenishment, minimization of nutrient losses to the environment, and the concept of coordination in action between S and N could be a significant strategy for improvement of growth and productivity of oleiferous brassicas. Additionally, positive interaction between S and N has been reported to be beneficial for various aspects of oilseed brassicas. The current paper updates readers on the significance of N and S for the improvement of plant growth, development, and productivity in detail. In addition, S-N nutrition-mediated control of major plant antioxidant defense system components involved in the removal and/or metabolism of stress-induced/generated reactive oxygen species in plants (hence, the control of plant growth, development, and productivity) has been overviewed.

  8. Improving Growth and Productivity of Oleiferous Brassicas under Changing Environment: Significance of Nitrogen and Sulphur Nutrition, and Underlying Mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naser A. Anjum

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Mineral nutrients are the integral part of the agricultural systems. Among important plant nutrients, nitrogen (N and sulphur (S are known essential elements for growth, development, and various physiological functions in plants. Oleiferous brassicas (rapeseed and mustard require higher amounts of S in addition to N for optimum growth and yield. Therefore, balancing S-N fertilization, optimization of nutrient replenishment, minimization of nutrient losses to the environment, and the concept of coordination in action between S and N could be a significant strategy for improvement of growth and productivity of oleiferous brassicas. Additionally, positive interaction between S and N has been reported to be beneficial for various aspects of oilseed brassicas. The current paper updates readers on the significance of N and S for the improvement of plant growth, development, and productivity in detail. In addition, S-N nutrition-mediated control of major plant antioxidant defense system components involved in the removal and/or metabolism of stress-induced/generated reactive oxygen species in plants (hence, the control of plant growth, development, and productivity has been overviewed.

  9. Annonaceous acetogenins (ACGs) nanosuspensions based on a self-assembly stabilizer and the significantly improved anti-tumor efficacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Jingyi; Li, Yanhong; Xiao, Yao; Li, Yijing; Guo, Yifei; Kuang, Haixue; Wang, Xiangtao

    2016-09-01

    Annonaceous acetogenins (ACGs) have exhibited antitumor activity against various cancers. However, these substances' poor solubility has limited clinical applications. In this study, hydroxypropyl-beta-cyclodextrin (HP-β-CD) and soybean lecithin (SPC) were self-assembled into an amphiphilic complex. ACGs nanosuspensions (ACGs-NSps) were prepared with a mean particle size of 144.4nm, a zeta potential of -22.9mV and a high drug payload of 46.17% using this complex as stabilizer. The ACGs-NSps demonstrated sustained release in vitro and good stability in plasma as well as simulated gastrointestinal fluid, and met the demand of both intravenous injection and oral administration. The ACGs-NSps demonstrated significantly increased cytotoxicity against Hela and HepG2 cancer cell lines compared to ACGs in solution (in vitro cytotoxicity assay). An in vivo study with H22-tumor bearing mice demonstrated that nanosuspensions significantly improved ACGs' antitumor activity. When orally administered, ACGs-NSps achieved a similar tumor inhibition rate at 1/10th the dose of ACGs in an oil solution (47.94% vs. 49.74%, p>0.05). Improved therapeutic efficacy was further achieved when the ACGs-NSps were intravenously injected into mice (70.31%). With the help of nanosuspension technology, ACGs may be an effective antitumor drug for clinic use. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Incorporating representation of agricultural ecosystems and management within a dynamic biosphere model: Approach, validation, and significance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kucharik, C.

    2004-12-01

    At the scale of individual fields, crop models have long been used to examine the interactions between soils, vegetation, the atmosphere and human management, using varied levels of numerical sophistication. While previous efforts have contributed significantly towards the advancement of modeling tools, the models themselves are not typically applied across larger continental scales due to a lack of crucial data. Furthermore, many times crop models are used to study a single quantity, process, or cycle in isolation, limiting their value in considering the important tradeoffs between competing ecosystem services such as food production, water quality, and sequestered carbon. In response to the need for a more integrated agricultural modeling approach across the continental scale, an updated agricultural version of a dynamic biosphere model (IBIS) now integrates representations of land-surface physics and soil physics, canopy physiology, terrestrial carbon and nitrogen balance, crop phenology, solute transport, and farm management into a single framework. This version of the IBIS model (Agro-IBIS) uses a short 20 to 60-minute timestep to simulate the rapid exchange of energy, carbon, water, and momentum between soils, vegetative canopies, and the atmosphere. The model can be driven either by site-specific meteorological data or by gridded climate datasets. Mechanistic crop models for corn, soybean, and wheat use physiologically-based representations of leaf photosynthesis, stomatal conductance, and plant respiration. Model validation has been performed using a variety of temporal scale data collected at the following spatial scales: (1) the precision-agriculture scale (5 m), (2) the individual field experiment scale (AmeriFlux), and (3) regional and continental scales using annual USDA county-level yield data and monthly satellite (AVHRR) observations of vegetation characteristics at 0.5 degree resolution. To date, the model has been used with great success to

  11. Computation of spatial significance of mountain objects extracted from multiscale digital elevation models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sathyamoorthy, Dinesh

    2014-01-01

    The derivation of spatial significance is an important aspect of geospatial analysis and hence, various methods have been proposed to compute the spatial significance of entities based on spatial distances with other entities within the cluster. This paper is aimed at studying the spatial significance of mountain objects extracted from multiscale digital elevation models (DEMs). At each scale, the value of spatial significance index SSI of a mountain object is the minimum number of morphological dilation iterations required to occupy all the other mountain objects in the terrain. The mountain object with the lowest value of SSI is the spatially most significant mountain object, indicating that it has the shortest distance to the other mountain objects. It is observed that as the area of the mountain objects reduce with increasing scale, the distances between the mountain objects increase, resulting in increasing values of SSI. The results obtained indicate that the strategic location of a mountain object at the centre of the terrain is more important than its size in determining its reach to other mountain objects and thus, its spatial significance

  12. The significance of using satellite imagery data only in Ecological Niche Modelling of Iberian herps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neftalí Sillero

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The environmental data used to calculate ecological niche models (ENM are obtained mainly from ground-based maps (e.g., climatic interpolated surfaces. These data are often not available for less developed areas, or may be at an inappropriate scale, and thus to obtain this information requires fieldwork. An alternative source of eco-geographical data comes from satellite imagery. Three sets of ENM were calculated exclusively with variables obtained (1 from optical and radar images only and (2 from climatic and altitude maps obtained by ground-based methods. These models were compared to evaluate whether satellite imagery can accurately generate ENM. These comparisons must be made in areas with well-known species distribution and with available satellite imagery and ground-based data. Thus, the study area was the south-western part of Salamanca (Spain, using amphibian and reptiles as species models. Models’ discrimination capacity was measured with ROC plots. Models’ covariation was measured with a Spatial Spearman correlation. Four modelling techniques were used (Bioclim, Mahalanobis distance, GARP and Maxent. The results of this comparison showed that there were no significant differences between models generated using remotely sensed imagery or ground-based data. However, the models built with satellite imagery data exhibited a larger diversity of values, probably related to the higher spatial resolution of the satellite imagery. Satellite imagery can produce accurate ENM, independently of the modelling technique or the dataset used. Therefore, biogeographical analysis of species distribution in remote areas can be accurately developed only with variables from satellite imagery.

  13. How can model comparison help improving species distribution models?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuel Stephan Gritti

    Full Text Available Today, more than ever, robust projections of potential species range shifts are needed to anticipate and mitigate the impacts of climate change on biodiversity and ecosystem services. Such projections are so far provided almost exclusively by correlative species distribution models (correlative SDMs. However, concerns regarding the reliability of their predictive power are growing and several authors call for the development of process-based SDMs. Still, each of these methods presents strengths and weakness which have to be estimated if they are to be reliably used by decision makers. In this study we compare projections of three different SDMs (STASH, LPJ and PHENOFIT that lie in the continuum between correlative models and process-based models for the current distribution of three major European tree species, Fagussylvatica L., Quercusrobur L. and Pinussylvestris L. We compare the consistency of the model simulations using an innovative comparison map profile method, integrating local and multi-scale comparisons. The three models simulate relatively accurately the current distribution of the three species. The process-based model performs almost as well as the correlative model, although parameters of the former are not fitted to the observed species distributions. According to our simulations, species range limits are triggered, at the European scale, by establishment and survival through processes primarily related to phenology and resistance to abiotic stress rather than to growth efficiency. The accuracy of projections of the hybrid and process-based model could however be improved by integrating a more realistic representation of the species resistance to water stress for instance, advocating for pursuing efforts to understand and formulate explicitly the impact of climatic conditions and variations on these processes.

  14. Intriguing model significantly reduces boarding of psychiatric patients, need for inpatient hospitalization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    As new approaches to the care of psychiatric emergencies emerge, one solution is gaining particular traction. Under the Alameda model, which has been put into practice in Alameda County, CA, patients who are brought to regional EDs with emergency psychiatric issues are quickly transferred to a designated emergency psychiatric facility as soon as they are medically stabilized. This alleviates boarding problems in area EDs while also quickly connecting patients with specialized care. With data in hand on the model's effectiveness, developers believe the approach could alleviate boarding problems in other communities as well. The model is funded by through a billing code established by California's Medicaid program for crisis stabilization services. Currently, only 22% of the patients brought to the emergency psychiatric facility ultimately need to be hospitalized; the other 78% are able to go home or to an alternative situation. In a 30-day study of the model, involving five community hospitals in Alameda County, CA, researchers found that ED boarding times were as much as 80% lower than comparable ED averages, and that patients were stabilized at least 75% of the time, significantly reducing the need for inpatient hospitalization.

  15. Flexible deep-ultraviolet light-emitting diodes for significant improvement of quantum efficiencies by external bending

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shervin, Shahab; Oh, Seung Kyu; Park, Hyun Jung; Lee, Keon-Hwa; Asadirad, Mojtaba; Kim, Seung-Hwan; Kim, Jeomoh; Pouladi, Sara; Lee, Sung-Nam; Li, Xiaohang; Kwak, Joon Seop; Ryou, Jae-Hyun

    2018-03-01

    We report a new route to improve quantum efficiencies of AlGaN-based deep-ultraviolet light-emitting diodes (DUV LEDs) using mechanical flexibility of recently developed bendable thin-film structures. Numerical studies show that electronic band structures of AlGaN heterostructures and resulting optical and electrical characteristics of the devices can be significantly modified by external bending through active control of piezoelectric polarization. Internal quantum efficiency is enhanced higher than three times, when the DUV LEDs are moderately bent with concave curvatures. Furthermore, an efficiency droop at high injection currents is mitigated and turn-on voltage of diodes decreases with the same bending condition. The concept of bendable DUV LEDs with a controlled external strain can provide a new path for high-output-power and high-efficiency devices.

  16. Codon Optimization Significantly Improves the Expression Level of α-Amylase Gene from Bacillus licheniformis in Pichia pastoris

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Rong Wang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available α-Amylase as an important industrial enzyme has been widely used in starch processing, detergent, and paper industries. To improve expression efficiency of recombinant α-amylase from Bacillus licheniformis (B. licheniformis, the α-amylase gene from B. licheniformis was optimized according to the codon usage of Pichia pastoris (P. pastoris and expressed in P. pastoris. Totally, the codons encoding 305 amino acids were optimized in which a total of 328 nucleotides were changed and the G+C content was increased from 47.6 to 49.2%. The recombinants were cultured in 96-deep-well microplates and screened by a new plate assay method. Compared with the wild-type gene, the optimized gene is expressed at a significantly higher level in P. pastoris after methanol induction for 168 h in 5- and 50-L bioreactor with the maximum activity of 8100 and 11000 U/mL, which was 2.31- and 2.62-fold higher than that by wild-type gene. The improved expression level makes the enzyme a good candidate for α-amylase production in industrial use.

  17. A Parallelized Pumpless Artificial Placenta System Significantly Prolonged Survival Time in a Preterm Lamb Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miura, Yuichiro; Matsuda, Tadashi; Usuda, Haruo; Watanabe, Shimpei; Kitanishi, Ryuta; Saito, Masatoshi; Hanita, Takushi; Kobayashi, Yoshiyasu

    2016-05-01

    An artificial placenta (AP) is an arterio-venous extracorporeal life support system that is connected to the fetal circulation via the umbilical vasculature. Previously, we published an article describing a pumpless AP system with a small priming volume. We subsequently developed a parallelized system, hypothesizing that the reduced circuit resistance conveyed by this modification would enable healthy fetal survival time to be prolonged. We conducted experiments using a premature lamb model to test this hypothesis. As a result, the fetal survival period was significantly prolonged (60.4 ± 3.8 vs. 18.2 ± 3.2 h, P lamb fetuses to survive for a significantly longer period when compared with previous studies. Copyright © 2015 International Center for Artificial Organs and Transplantation and Wiley Periodicals Inc.

  18. Field significance of performance measures in the context of regional climate model evaluation. Part 1: temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanov, Martin; Warrach-Sagi, Kirsten; Wulfmeyer, Volker

    2018-04-01

    A new approach for rigorous spatial analysis of the downscaling performance of regional climate model (RCM) simulations is introduced. It is based on a multiple comparison of the local tests at the grid cells and is also known as "field" or "global" significance. New performance measures for estimating the added value of downscaled data relative to the large-scale forcing fields are developed. The methodology is exemplarily applied to a standard EURO-CORDEX hindcast simulation with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model coupled with the land surface model NOAH at 0.11 ∘ grid resolution. Monthly temperature climatology for the 1990-2009 period is analysed for Germany for winter and summer in comparison with high-resolution gridded observations from the German Weather Service. The field significance test controls the proportion of falsely rejected local tests in a meaningful way and is robust to spatial dependence. Hence, the spatial patterns of the statistically significant local tests are also meaningful. We interpret them from a process-oriented perspective. In winter and in most regions in summer, the downscaled distributions are statistically indistinguishable from the observed ones. A systematic cold summer bias occurs in deep river valleys due to overestimated elevations, in coastal areas due probably to enhanced sea breeze circulation, and over large lakes due to the interpolation of water temperatures. Urban areas in concave topography forms have a warm summer bias due to the strong heat islands, not reflected in the observations. WRF-NOAH generates appropriate fine-scale features in the monthly temperature field over regions of complex topography, but over spatially homogeneous areas even small biases can lead to significant deteriorations relative to the driving reanalysis. As the added value of global climate model (GCM)-driven simulations cannot be smaller than this perfect-boundary estimate, this work demonstrates in a rigorous manner the

  19. The Significant of Model School in Pluralistic Society of the Three Southern Border Provinces of Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haji-Awang Faisol

    2016-01-01

    The result of the study show that, a significant traits of the model schools in the multi-cultural society are not merely performed well in administrative procedure, teaching and learning process, but these schools also able to reveal the real social norm and religious believe into communities’ practical life as a truly “Malay-Muslim” society. It is means that, the school able to run the integrated programs under the shade of philosophy of Islamic education paralleled the National Education aims to ensure that the productivities of the programs able to serve both sides, national education on the one hand and the Malay Muslim communities’ satisfaction on the other hand.

  20. Relevance and clinical significance of serum resistin level in obese T2DM rhesus monkey models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, S-D; He, Z-L; Chen, Y; Ma, J; Yu, W-H; Li, Y-Y; Yang, F-M; Wang, J-B; Chen, L-X; Zhao, Y; Lu, S-Y

    2015-09-01

    Resistin is a type of hormone-like adipocytokines, which is secreted specifically by adipocytes. It may be a key factor in the development of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) from obesity- associated insulin resistance due to results that show that it has a close relationship with insulin resistance in rodents. We utilized the rhesus monkeys as study objects to preliminarily test the association with glucose metabolism and to conduct a correlation analysis for clinical parameters and serum resistin levels in obese rhesus monkey models of T2DM. The results suggested that resistin was significantly increased in T2DM monkeys (P insulin (FPI) and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c), Insulin resistance index (HOA-IR), but a negative correlation with islet β-cell function (HOMA-β). In the course of glucose metabolism, reverse release change of resistin and insulin in T2DM monkeys occurred, but the phenomenon that was not observed in the control group, these findings indicated that resistin negatively regulated and interfered with carbohydrate metabolism in T2DM monkey models. The character of the releasing change of resistin might be a unique process in T2DM. Therefore, all of the results could provide references for clinical diagnostic criteria for human cases of T2DM, and could have clinical significance for obese T2DM diagnosis and degree of insulin resistance. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  1. Combat-related intradural gunshot wound to the thoracic spine: significant improvement and neurologic recovery following bullet removal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louwes, Thijs M; Ward, William H; Lee, Kendall H; Freedman, Brett A

    2015-02-01

    The vast majority of combat-related penetrating spinal injuries from gunshot wounds result in severe or complete neurological deficit. Treatment is based on neurological status, the presence of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) fistulas, and local effects of any retained fragment(s). We present a case of a 46-year-old male who sustained a spinal gunshot injury from a 7.62-mm AK-47 round that became lodged within the subarachnoid space at T9-T10. He immediately suffered complete motor and sensory loss. By 24-48 hours post-injury, he had recovered lower extremity motor function fully but continued to have severe sensory loss (posterior cord syndrome). On post-injury day 2, he was evacuated from the combat theater and underwent a T9 laminectomy, extraction of the bullet, and dural laceration repair. At surgery, the traumatic durotomy was widened and the bullet, which was laying on the dorsal surface of the spinal cord, was removed. The dura was closed in a water-tight fashion and fibrin glue was applied. Postoperatively, the patient made a significant but incomplete neurological recovery. His stocking-pattern numbness and sub-umbilical searing dysthesia improved. The spinal canal was clear of the foreign body and he had no persistent CSF leak. Postoperative magnetic resonance imaging of the spine revealed contusion of the spinal cord at the T9 level. Early removal of an intra-canicular bullet in the setting of an incomplete spinal cord injury can lead to significant neurological recovery following even high-velocity and/or high-caliber gunshot wounds. However, this case does not speak to, and prior experience does not demonstrate, significant neurological benefit in the setting of a complete injury.

  2. Multilevel models improve precision and speed of IC50 estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vis, Daniel J; Bombardelli, Lorenzo; Lightfoot, Howard; Iorio, Francesco; Garnett, Mathew J; Wessels, Lodewyk Fa

    2016-05-01

    Experimental variation in dose-response data of drugs tested on cell lines result in inaccuracies in the estimate of a key drug sensitivity characteristic: the IC50. We aim to improve the precision of the half-limiting dose (IC50) estimates by simultaneously employing all dose-responses across all cell lines and drugs, rather than using a single drug-cell line response. We propose a multilevel mixed effects model that takes advantage of all available dose-response data. The new estimates are highly concordant with the currently used Bayesian model when the data are well behaved. Otherwise, the multilevel model is clearly superior. The multilevel model yields a significant reduction of extreme IC50 estimates, an increase in precision and it runs orders of magnitude faster.

  3. VALORA: data base system for storage significant information used in the behavior modelling in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Valdes R, M.; Aguero P, A.; Perez S, D.; Cancio P, D.

    2006-01-01

    The nuclear and radioactive facilities can emit to the environment effluents that contain radionuclides, which are dispersed and/or its accumulate in the atmosphere, the terrestrial surface and the surface waters. As part of the evaluations of radiological impact, it requires to be carried out qualitative and quantitative analysis. In many of the cases it doesn't have the real values of the parameters that are used in the modelling, neither it is possible to carry out their measure, for that to be able to carry out the evaluation it needs to be carried out an extensive search of that published in the literature about the possible values of each parameter, under similar conditions to the object of study, this work can be extensive. In this work the characteristics of the VALORA Database System developed with the purpose of organizing and to automate significant information that it appears in different sources (scientific or technique literature) of the parameters that are used in the modelling of the behavior of the pollutants in the environment and the values assigned to these parameters that are used in the evaluation of the radiological impact potential is described; VALORA allows the consultation and selection of the characteristic parametric data of different situations and processes that are required by the calculation pattern implemented. The software VALORA it is a component of a group of tools computer that have as objective to help to the resolution of dispersion models and transfer of pollutants. (Author)

  4. Fuel assembly bow: analytical modeling and resulting design improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stabel, J.; Huebsch, H.P.

    1995-01-01

    The bowing of fuel assemblies may result in a contact between neighbouring fuel assemblies and in connection with a vibration to a resulting wear or even perforation at the corners of the spacer grids of neighbouring assemblies. Such events allowed reinsertion of a few fuel assemblies in Germany only after spacer repair. In order to identify the most sensitive parameters causing the observed bowing of fuel assemblies a new computer model was develop which takes into a account the highly nonlinear behaviour of the interaction between fuel rods and spacers. As a result of the studies performed with this model, design improvements such as a more rigid connection between guide thimbles and spacer grids, could be defined. First experiences with this improved design show significantly better fuel behaviour. (author). 5 figs., 1 tabs

  5. Phasic firing in vasopressin cells: understanding its functional significance through computational models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Duncan J MacGregor

    Full Text Available Vasopressin neurons, responding to input generated by osmotic pressure, use an intrinsic mechanism to shift from slow irregular firing to a distinct phasic pattern, consisting of long bursts and silences lasting tens of seconds. With increased input, bursts lengthen, eventually shifting to continuous firing. The phasic activity remains asynchronous across the cells and is not reflected in the population output signal. Here we have used a computational vasopressin neuron model to investigate the functional significance of the phasic firing pattern. We generated a concise model of the synaptic input driven spike firing mechanism that gives a close quantitative match to vasopressin neuron spike activity recorded in vivo, tested against endogenous activity and experimental interventions. The integrate-and-fire based model provides a simple physiological explanation of the phasic firing mechanism involving an activity-dependent slow depolarising afterpotential (DAP generated by a calcium-inactivated potassium leak current. This is modulated by the slower, opposing, action of activity-dependent dendritic dynorphin release, which inactivates the DAP, the opposing effects generating successive periods of bursting and silence. Model cells are not spontaneously active, but fire when perturbed by random perturbations mimicking synaptic input. We constructed one population of such phasic neurons, and another population of similar cells but which lacked the ability to fire phasically. We then studied how these two populations differed in the way that they encoded changes in afferent inputs. By comparison with the non-phasic population, the phasic population responds linearly to increases in tonic synaptic input. Non-phasic cells respond to transient elevations in synaptic input in a way that strongly depends on background activity levels, phasic cells in a way that is independent of background levels, and show a similar strong linearization of the response

  6. Lipid Replacement Therapy Drink Containing a Glycophospholipid Formulation Rapidly and Significantly Reduces Fatigue While Improving Energy and Mental Clarity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Settineri

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Fatigue is the most common complaint of patients seeking general medical care and is often treated with stimulants. It is also important in various physical activities of relatively healthy men and women, such as sports performance. Recent clinical trials using patients with chronic fatigue have shown the benefit of Lipid Replacement Therapy in restoring mitochondrial electron transport function and reducing moderate to severe chronic fatigue. Methods: Lipid Replacement Therapy was administered for the first time as an all-natural functional food drink (60 ml containing polyunsaturated glycophospholipids but devoid of stimulants or herbs to reduce fatigue. This preliminary study used the Piper Fatigue Survey instrument as well as a supplemental questionnaire to assess the effects of the glycophospholipid drink on fatigue and the acceptability of the test drink in adult men and women. A volunteer group of 29 subjects of mean age 56.2±4.5 years with various fatigue levels were randomly recruited in a clinical health fair setting to participate in an afternoon open label trial on the effects of the test drink. Results: Using the Piper Fatigue instrument overall fatigue among participants was reduced within the 3-hour seminar by a mean of 39.6% (p<0.0001. All of the subcategories of fatigue showed significant reductions. Some subjects responded within 15 minutes, and the majority responded within one hour with increased energy and activity and perceived improvements in cognitive function, mental clarity and focus. The test drink was determined to be quite acceptable in terms of taste and appearance. There were no adverse events from the energy drink during the study.Functional Foods in Health and Disease 2011; 8:245-254Conclusions: The Lipid Replacement Therapy functional food drink appeared to be a safe, acceptable and potentially useful new method to reduce fatigue, sustain energy and improve perceptions of mental function.

  7. A communication tool to improve the patient journey modeling process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curry, Joanne; McGregor, Carolyn; Tracy, Sally

    2006-01-01

    Quality improvement is high on the agenda of Health Care Organisations (HCO) worldwide. Patient journey modeling is a relatively recent innovation in healthcare quality improvement that models the patient's movement through the HCO by viewing it from a patient centric perspective. Critical to the success of the redesigning care process is the involvement of all stakeholders and their commitment to actively participate in the process. Tools which promote this type of communication are a critical enabler that can significantly affect the overall process redesign outcomes. Such a tool must also be able to incorporate additional factors such as relevant policies and procedures, staff roles, system usage and measurements such as process time and cost. This paper presents a graphically based communication tool that can be used as part of the patient journey modeling process to promote stakeholder involvement, commitment and ownership as well highlighting the relationship of other relevant variables that contribute to the patient's journey. Examples of how the tool has been used and the framework employed are demonstrated via a midwife-led primary care case study. A key contribution of this research is the provision of a graphical communication framework that is simple to use, is easily understood by a diverse range of stakeholders and enables ready recognition of patient journey issues. Results include strong stakeholder buy-in and significant enhancement to the overall design of the future patient journey. Initial results indicate that the use of such a communication tool can improve the patient journey modeling process and the overall quality improvement outcomes.

  8. Flavonol-rich dark cocoa significantly decreases plasma endothelin-1 and improves cognitive responses in urban children.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lilian eCalderon-Garciduenas

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Air pollution exposures are linked to systemic inflammation, cardiovascular and respiratory morbidity and mortality, neuroinflammation and neuropathology in young urbanites. In particular, most Mexico City Metropolitan Area (MCMA children exhibit subtle cognitive deficits, and neuropathology studies show 40% of them exhibiting frontal tau hyperphosphorylation and 51% amyloid-β diffuse plaques (compared to 0% in low pollution control children. We assessed whether a short cocoa intervention can be effective in decreasing plasma endothelin 1 (ET-1 and/or inflammatory mediators in MCMA children. Thirty g of dark cocoa with 680 mg of total flavonols were given daily for 10.11± 3.4 days (range 9 to 24 days to 18 children (10.55yrs, SD =1.45; 11F/7M. Key metabolite ratios in frontal white matter and in hippocampus pre and during cocoa intervention were quantified by magnetic resonance spectroscopy. ET-1 significantly decreased after cocoa treatment (p=0.0002. Fifteen children (83% showed a marginally significant individual improvement in one or both of the applied simple short memory tasks. Endothelial dysfunction is a key feature of exposure to particulate matter and decreased endothelin-1 bioavailability is likely useful for brain function in the context of air pollution. Our findings suggest that cocoa interventions may be critical for early implementation of neuroprotection of highly exposed urban children. Multi-domain nutraceutical interventions could limit the risk for endothelial dysfunction, cerebral hypoperfusion, neuroinflammation, cognitive deficits, structural volumetric detrimental brain effects, and the early development of the neuropathological hallmarks of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

  9. DIFFERENCES IN WATER VAPOR RADIATIVE TRANSFER AMONG 1D MODELS CAN SIGNIFICANTLY AFFECT THE INNER EDGE OF THE HABITABLE ZONE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Jun; Wang, Yuwei [Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing (China); Leconte, Jérémy; Forget, François [Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, CNRS, Paris (France); Wolf, Eric T. [Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, University of Colorado in Boulder, CO (United States); Goldblatt, Colin [School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC (Canada); Feldl, Nicole [Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology, CA (United States); Merlis, Timothy [Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences at McGill University, Montréal (Canada); Koll, Daniel D. B.; Ding, Feng; Abbot, Dorian S., E-mail: junyang@pku.edu.cn, E-mail: abbot@uchicago.edu [Department of the Geophysical Sciences, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States)

    2016-08-01

    An accurate estimate of the inner edge of the habitable zone is critical for determining which exoplanets are potentially habitable and for designing future telescopes to observe them. Here, we explore differences in estimating the inner edge among seven one-dimensional radiative transfer models: two line-by-line codes (SMART and LBLRTM) as well as five band codes (CAM3, CAM4-Wolf, LMDG, SBDART, and AM2) that are currently being used in global climate models. We compare radiative fluxes and spectra in clear-sky conditions around G and M stars, with fixed moist adiabatic profiles for surface temperatures from 250 to 360 K. We find that divergences among the models arise mainly from large uncertainties in water vapor absorption in the window region (10 μ m) and in the region between 0.2 and 1.5 μ m. Differences in outgoing longwave radiation increase with surface temperature and reach 10–20 W m{sup 2}; differences in shortwave reach up to 60 W m{sup 2}, especially at the surface and in the troposphere, and are larger for an M-dwarf spectrum than a solar spectrum. Differences between the two line-by-line models are significant, although smaller than among the band models. Our results imply that the uncertainty in estimating the insolation threshold of the inner edge (the runaway greenhouse limit) due only to clear-sky radiative transfer is ≈10% of modern Earth’s solar constant (i.e., ≈34 W m{sup 2} in global mean) among band models and ≈3% between the two line-by-line models. These comparisons show that future work is needed that focuses on improving water vapor absorption coefficients in both shortwave and longwave, as well as on increasing the resolution of stellar spectra in broadband models.

  10. Imparting improvements in electrochemical sensors: evaluation of different carbon blacks that give rise to significant improvement in the performance of electroanalytical sensing platforms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vicentini, Fernando Campanhã; Ravanini, Amanda E.; Figueiredo-Filho, Luiz C.S.; Iniesta, Jesús; Banks, Craig E.; Fatibello-Filho, Orlando

    2015-01-01

    Three different carbon black materials have been evaluated as a potential modifier, however, only one demonstrated an improvement in the electrochemical properties. The carbon black structures were characterised with SEM, XPS and Raman spectroscopy and found to be very similar to that of amorphous graphitic materials. The modifications utilised were constructed by three different strategies (using ultrapure water, chitosan and dihexadecylphosphate). The fabricated sensors are electrochemically characterised using N,N,N',N'-tetramethyl-para-phenylenediamine and both inner-sphere and outer-sphere redox probes, namely potassium ferrocyanide(II) and hexaammineruthenium(III) chloride, in addition to the biologically relevant and electroactive analytes, dopamine (DA) and acetaminophen (AP). Comparisons are made with an edge-plane pyrolytic graphite and glassy-carbon electrode and the benefits of carbon black implemented as a modifier for sensors within electrochemistry are explored, as well as the characterisation of their electroanalytical performances. We reveal significant improvements in the electrochemical performance (excellent sensitivity, faster heterogeneous electron transfer rate (HET)) over that of a bare glassy-carbon and edge-plane pyrolytic graphite electrode and thus suggest that there are substantial advantages of using carbon black as modifier in the fabrication of electrochemical based sensors. Such work is highly important and informative for those working in the field of electroanalysis where electrochemistry can provide portable, rapid, reliable and accurate sensing protocols (bringing the laboratory into the field), with particular relevance to those searching for new electrode materials

  11. Flexible deep-ultraviolet light-emitting diodes for significant improvement of quantum efficiencies by external bending

    KAUST Repository

    Shervin, Shahab

    2018-01-26

    Deep ultraviolet (DUV) light at the wavelength range of 250‒280 nm (UVC spectrum) is essential for numerous applications such as sterilization, purification, sensing, and communication. III-nitride-based DUV light-emitting diodes (DUV LEDs), like other solid-state lighting sources, offer a great potential to replace the conventional gas-discharged lamps with short lifetimes and toxic-element-bearing nature. However, unlike visible LEDs, the DUV LEDs are still suffering from low quantum efficiencies (QEs) and low optical output powers. In this work, reported is a new route to improve QEs of AlGaN-based DUV LEDs using mechanical flexibility of recently developed bendable thin-film structures. Numerical studies show that electronic band structures of AlGaN heterostructures and resulting optical and electrical characteristics of the devices can be significantly modified by external bending through active control of piezoelectric polarization. Internal quantum efficiency (IQE) is enhanced higher than three times, when the DUV LEDs are moderately bent to induce in-plane compressive strain in the heterostructure. Furthermore, efficiency droop at high injection currents is mitigated and turn-on voltage of diodes decreases with the same bending condition. The concept of bendable DUV LEDs with a controlled external strain can provide a new path for high-output-power and high-efficiency devices.

  12. Improving ammonia emissions in air quality modelling for France

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamaoui-Laguel, Lynda; Meleux, Frédérik; Beekmann, Matthias; Bessagnet, Bertrand; Génermont, Sophie; Cellier, Pierre; Létinois, Laurent

    2014-08-01

    We have implemented a new module to improve the representation of ammonia emissions from agricultural activities in France with the objective to evaluate the impact of such emissions on the formation of particulate matter modelled with the air quality model CHIMERE. A novel method has been set up for the part of ammonia emissions originating from mineral fertilizer spreading. They are calculated using the one dimensional 1D mechanistic model “VOLT'AIR” which has been coupled with data on agricultural practices, meteorology and soil properties obtained at high spatial resolution (cantonal level). These emissions display high spatiotemporal variations depending on soil pH, rates and dates of fertilization and meteorological variables, especially soil temperature. The emissions from other agricultural sources (animal housing, manure storage and organic manure spreading) are calculated using the national spatialised inventory (INS) recently developed in France. The comparison of the total ammonia emissions estimated with the new approach VOLT'AIR_INS with the standard emissions provided by EMEP (European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme) used currently in the CHIMERE model shows significant differences in the spatiotemporal distributions. The implementation of new ammonia emissions in the CHIMERE model has a limited impact on ammonium nitrate aerosol concentrations which only increase at most by 10% on the average for the considered spring period but this impact can be more significant for specific pollution episodes. The comparison of modelled PM10 (particulate matter with aerodynamic diameter smaller than 10 μm) and ammonium nitrate aerosol with observations shows that the use of the new ammonia emission method slightly improves the spatiotemporal correlation in certain regions and reduces the negative bias on average by 1 μg m-3. The formation of ammonium nitrate aerosol depends not only on ammonia concentrations but also on nitric acid availability, which

  13. Models and Mechanisms of Acquired Antihormone Resistance in Breast Cancer: Significant Clinical Progress Despite Limitations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweeney, Elizabeth E.; McDaniel, Russell E.; Maximov, Philipp Y.; Fan, Ping; Jordan, V. Craig

    2012-01-01

    Translational research for the treatment and prevention of breast cancer depends upon the four Ms: models, molecules, and mechanisms in order to create medicines. The process, to target the estrogen receptor (ER) in estrogen-dependent breast cancer, has yielded significant advances in patient survivorship and the first approved medicines (tamoxifen and raloxifene) to reduce the incidence of any cancer in high- or low-risk women. This review focuses on the critical role of the few ER-positive cell lines (MCF-7, T47D, BT474, ZR-75) that continue to advance our understanding of the estrogen-regulated biology of breast cancer. More importantly, the model cell lines have provided an opportunity to document the development and evolution of acquired antihormone resistance. The description of this evolutionary process that occurs in micrometastatic disease during up to a decade of adjuvant therapy would not be possible in the patient. The use of the MCF-7 breast cancer cell line in particular has been instrumental in discovering a vulnerability of ER-positive breast cancer exhaustively treated with antihormone therapy. Physiologic estradiol acts as an apoptotic trigger to cause tumor regression. These unanticipated findings in the laboratory have translated to clinical advances in our knowledge of the paradoxical role of estrogen in the life and death of breast cancer. PMID:23308083

  14. Significance tests to determine the direction of effects in linear regression models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiedermann, Wolfgang; Hagmann, Michael; von Eye, Alexander

    2015-02-01

    Previous studies have discussed asymmetric interpretations of the Pearson correlation coefficient and have shown that higher moments can be used to decide on the direction of dependence in the bivariate linear regression setting. The current study extends this approach by illustrating that the third moment of regression residuals may also be used to derive conclusions concerning the direction of effects. Assuming non-normally distributed variables, it is shown that the distribution of residuals of the correctly specified regression model (e.g., Y is regressed on X) is more symmetric than the distribution of residuals of the competing model (i.e., X is regressed on Y). Based on this result, 4 one-sample tests are discussed which can be used to decide which variable is more likely to be the response and which one is more likely to be the explanatory variable. A fifth significance test is proposed based on the differences of skewness estimates, which leads to a more direct test of a hypothesis that is compatible with direction of dependence. A Monte Carlo simulation study was performed to examine the behaviour of the procedures under various degrees of associations, sample sizes, and distributional properties of the underlying population. An empirical example is given which illustrates the application of the tests in practice. © 2014 The British Psychological Society.

  15. Multilevel linear modelling of the response-contingent learning of young children with significant developmental delays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raab, Melinda; Dunst, Carl J; Hamby, Deborah W

    2018-02-27

    The purpose of the study was to isolate the sources of variations in the rates of response-contingent learning among young children with multiple disabilities and significant developmental delays randomly assigned to contrasting types of early childhood intervention. Multilevel, hierarchical linear growth curve modelling was used to analyze four different measures of child response-contingent learning where repeated child learning measures were nested within individual children (Level-1), children were nested within practitioners (Level-2), and practitioners were nested within the contrasting types of intervention (Level-3). Findings showed that sources of variations in rates of child response-contingent learning were associated almost entirely with type of intervention after the variance associated with differences in practitioners nested within groups were accounted for. Rates of child learning were greater among children whose existing behaviour were used as the building blocks for promoting child competence (asset-based practices) compared to children for whom the focus of intervention was promoting child acquisition of missing skills (needs-based practices). The methods of analysis illustrate a practical approach to clustered data analysis and the presentation of results in ways that highlight sources of variations in the rates of response-contingent learning among young children with multiple developmental disabilities and significant developmental delays. Copyright © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  16. An improved Corten-Dolan's model based on damage and stress state effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao, Huiying; Huang, Hong Zhong; Lv, Zhiqiang; Zuo, Fang Jun; Wang, Hai Kun

    2015-01-01

    The value of exponent d in Corten-Dolan's model is generally considered to be a constant. Nonetheless, the results predicted on the basis of this statement deviate significantly from the real values. In consideration of the effects of damage and stress state on fatigue life prediction, Corten-Dolan's model is improved by redefining the exponent d used in the traditional model. The improved model performs better than the traditional one with respect to the demonstration of a fatigue failure mechanism. Predictions of fatigue life on the basis of investigations into three metallic specimens indicate that the errors caused by the improved model are significantly smaller than those induced by the traditional model. Meanwhile, predictions derived according to the improved model fall into a narrower dispersion zone than those made as per Miner's rule and the traditional model. This finding suggests that the proposed model improves the life prediction accuracy of the other two models. The predictions obtained using the improved Corten-Dolan's model differ slightly from those derived according to a model proposed in previous literature; a few life predictions obtained on the basis of the former are more accurate than those derived according to the latter. Therefore, the improved model proposed in this paper is proven to be rational and reliable given the proven validity of the existing model. Therefore, the improved model can be feasibly and credibly applied to damage accumulation and fatigue life prediction to some extent.

  17. Significant Improvement of Puncture Accuracy and Fluoroscopy Reduction in Percutaneous Transforaminal Endoscopic Discectomy With Novel Lumbar Location System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Guoxin; Guan, Xiaofei; Zhang, Hailong; Wu, Xinbo; Gu, Xin; Gu, Guangfei; Fan, Yunshan; He, Shisheng

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Prospective nonrandomized control study. The study aimed to investigate the implication of the HE's Lumbar LOcation (HELLO) system in improving the puncture accuracy and reducing fluoroscopy in percutaneous transforaminal endoscopic discectomy (PTED). Percutaneous transforaminal endoscopic discectomy is one of the most popular minimally invasive spine surgeries that heavily depend on repeated fluoroscopy. Increased fluoroscopy will induce higher radiation exposure to surgeons and patients. Accurate puncture in PTED can be achieved by accurate preoperative location and definite trajectory. The HELLO system mainly consists of self-made surface locator and puncture-assisted device. The surface locator was used to identify the exact puncture target and the puncture-assisted device was used to optimize the puncture trajectory. Patients who had single L4/5 or L5/S1 lumbar intervertebral disc herniation and underwent PTED were included the study. Patients receiving the HELLO system were assigned in Group A, and those taking conventional method were assigned in Group B. Study primary endpoint was puncture times and fluoroscopic time, and the secondary endpoint was location time and operation time. A total of 62 patients who received PTED were included in this study. The average age was 45.35 ± 8.70 years in Group A and 46.61 ± 7.84 years in Group B (P = 0.552). There were no significant differences in gender, body mass index, conservative time, and surgical segment between the 2 groups (P > 0.05). The puncture time(s) were 1.19 ± 0.48 in Group A and 6.03 ± 1.87 in Group B (P < 0.001). The fluoroscopic times were 14.03 ± 2.54 in Group A and 25.19 ± 4.28 in Group B (P < 0.001). The preoperative location time was 4.67 ± 1.41 minutes in Group A and 6.98 ± 0.94 minutes in Group B (P < 0.001). The operation time was 79.42 ± 10.15 minutes in Group A and 89.65 ± 14.06 minutes in Group B (P

  18. Urban Growth Causes Significant increase in Extreme Rainfall - A modelling study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pathirana, Assela

    2010-05-01

    World's urban centers are growing rapidly causing the impact of extreme rainfall events felt much more severely due to relatively well unerstood phenomena like decreased infiltration and flow resistance. However, an increasing set of evidence (e.g. heavy rainfall event observed at Nerima, central part of Tokyo metropolitan area, on 21 July 1999) suggest that the extreme rainfall, the driving force itself increases as a result of the microclimatic changes due to urban growth. Urban heat islands(UHI) due to heat anomalies of urban sprawl act as virtual mountains resulting in a local atmosphere more conducive for heavy rainfall. In this study, we employ a popular mesoscale atmoshperic model to numerically simulate the UHI induced rainfall enhancement. Initial idealized experiments conducted under trophical atmospheric conditions indicated that the changes in landuse due to significant urban growth will indeed cause more intense rainfall events. This is largely due to increased convective breakup, causing a favourable situation for convective cloud systems. Five historical heavy rainfall events that caused floods in five urban centres (Dhaka, Mumbai, Colombo, Lyon and Taipei) were selected from historical records. Numerical simulations were setup to assertain what would be the amount of rainfall if the same large-scale atmospheric situations (forcings) occured under a hypothetical situation of doubled urbanization level these events. Significant increases (upto 50%) of extreme rainfall was indicated for many of the events. Under major assumptions, these simulations were used to estimate the anticipated changes in the Intensity-Duration-Frequency (IDF). The magnitude of the 30min event with 25 year return period increased by about 20 percent. Without considering any changes in the external forcing the urban growth alone could cause very significant increase in local rainfall.

  19. Post-exposure Treatment with Anti-rabies VHH and Vaccine Significantly Improves Protection of Mice from Lethal Rabies Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terryn, Sanne; Francart, Aurélie; Rommelaere, Heidi; Stortelers, Catelijne; Van Gucht, Steven

    2016-08-01

    Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) against rabies infection consists of a combination of passive immunisation with plasma-derived human or equine immune globulins and active immunisation with vaccine delivered shortly after exposure. Since anti-rabies immune globulins are expensive and scarce, there is a need for cheaper alternatives that can be produced more consistently. Previously, we generated potent virus-neutralising VHH, also called Nanobodies, against the rabies glycoprotein that are effectively preventing lethal disease in an in vivo mouse model. The VHH domain is the smallest antigen-binding functional fragment of camelid heavy chain-only antibodies that can be manufactured in microbial expression systems. In the current study we evaluated the efficacy of half-life extended anti-rabies VHH in combination with vaccine for PEP in an intranasal rabies infection model in mice. The PEP combination therapy of systemic anti-rabies VHH and intramuscular vaccine significantly delayed the onset of disease compared to treatment with anti-rabies VHH alone, prolonged median survival time (35 versus 14 days) and decreased mortality (60% versus 19% survival rate), when treated 24 hours after rabies virus challenge. Vaccine alone was unable to rescue mice from lethal disease. As reported also for immune globulins, some interference of anti-rabies VHH with the antigenicity of the vaccine was observed, but this did not impede the synergistic effect. Post exposure treatment with vaccine and human anti-rabies immune globulins was unable to protect mice from lethal challenge. Anti-rabies VHH and vaccine act synergistically to protect mice after rabies virus exposure, which further validates the possible use of anti-rabies VHH for rabies PEP.

  20. Constitutive overexpression of the TaNF-YB4 gene in transgenic wheat significantly improves grain yield

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Dinesh; Shavrukov, Yuri; Bazanova, Natalia; Chirkova, Larissa; Borisjuk, Nikolai; Kovalchuk, Nataliya; Ismagul, Ainur; Parent, Boris; Langridge, Peter; Hrmova, Maria; Lopato, Sergiy

    2015-01-01

    Heterotrimeric nuclear factors Y (NF-Ys) are involved in regulation of various vital functions in all eukaryotic organisms. Although a number of NF-Y subunits have been characterized in model plants, only a few have been functionally evaluated in crops. In this work, a number of genes encoding NF-YB and NF-YC subunits were isolated from drought-tolerant wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cv. RAC875), and the impact of the overexpression of TaNF-YB4 in the Australian wheat cultivar Gladius was investigated. TaNF-YB4 was isolated as a result of two consecutive yeast two-hybrid (Y2H) screens, where ZmNF-YB2a was used as a starting bait. A new NF-YC subunit, designated TaNF-YC15, was isolated in the first Y2H screen and used as bait in a second screen, which identified two wheat NF-YB subunits, TaNF-YB2 and TaNF-YB4. Three-dimensional modelling of a TaNF-YB2/TaNF-YC15 dimer revealed structural determinants that may underlie interaction selectivity. The TaNF-YB4 gene was placed under the control of the strong constitutive polyubiquitin promoter from maize and introduced into wheat by biolistic bombardment. The growth and yield components of several independent transgenic lines with up-regulated levels of TaNF-YB4 were evaluated under well-watered conditions (T1–T3 generations) and under mild drought (T2 generation). Analysis of T2 plants was performed in large deep containers in conditions close to field trials. Under optimal watering conditions, transgenic wheat plants produced significantly more spikes but other yield components did not change. This resulted in a 20–30% increased grain yield compared with untransformed control plants. Under water-limited conditions transgenic lines maintained parity in yield performance. PMID:26220082

  1. Post-exposure Treatment with Anti-rabies VHH and Vaccine Significantly Improves Protection of Mice from Lethal Rabies Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanne Terryn

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP against rabies infection consists of a combination of passive immunisation with plasma-derived human or equine immune globulins and active immunisation with vaccine delivered shortly after exposure. Since anti-rabies immune globulins are expensive and scarce, there is a need for cheaper alternatives that can be produced more consistently. Previously, we generated potent virus-neutralising VHH, also called Nanobodies, against the rabies glycoprotein that are effectively preventing lethal disease in an in vivo mouse model. The VHH domain is the smallest antigen-binding functional fragment of camelid heavy chain-only antibodies that can be manufactured in microbial expression systems. In the current study we evaluated the efficacy of half-life extended anti-rabies VHH in combination with vaccine for PEP in an intranasal rabies infection model in mice. The PEP combination therapy of systemic anti-rabies VHH and intramuscular vaccine significantly delayed the onset of disease compared to treatment with anti-rabies VHH alone, prolonged median survival time (35 versus 14 days and decreased mortality (60% versus 19% survival rate, when treated 24 hours after rabies virus challenge. Vaccine alone was unable to rescue mice from lethal disease. As reported also for immune globulins, some interference of anti-rabies VHH with the antigenicity of the vaccine was observed, but this did not impede the synergistic effect. Post exposure treatment with vaccine and human anti-rabies immune globulins was unable to protect mice from lethal challenge. Anti-rabies VHH and vaccine act synergistically to protect mice after rabies virus exposure, which further validates the possible use of anti-rabies VHH for rabies PEP.

  2. Post-exposure Treatment with Anti-rabies VHH and Vaccine Significantly Improves Protection of Mice from Lethal Rabies Infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terryn, Sanne; Francart, Aurélie; Rommelaere, Heidi; Stortelers, Catelijne; Van Gucht, Steven

    2016-01-01

    Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) against rabies infection consists of a combination of passive immunisation with plasma-derived human or equine immune globulins and active immunisation with vaccine delivered shortly after exposure. Since anti-rabies immune globulins are expensive and scarce, there is a need for cheaper alternatives that can be produced more consistently. Previously, we generated potent virus-neutralising VHH, also called Nanobodies, against the rabies glycoprotein that are effectively preventing lethal disease in an in vivo mouse model. The VHH domain is the smallest antigen-binding functional fragment of camelid heavy chain-only antibodies that can be manufactured in microbial expression systems. In the current study we evaluated the efficacy of half-life extended anti-rabies VHH in combination with vaccine for PEP in an intranasal rabies infection model in mice. The PEP combination therapy of systemic anti-rabies VHH and intramuscular vaccine significantly delayed the onset of disease compared to treatment with anti-rabies VHH alone, prolonged median survival time (35 versus 14 days) and decreased mortality (60% versus 19% survival rate), when treated 24 hours after rabies virus challenge. Vaccine alone was unable to rescue mice from lethal disease. As reported also for immune globulins, some interference of anti-rabies VHH with the antigenicity of the vaccine was observed, but this did not impede the synergistic effect. Post exposure treatment with vaccine and human anti-rabies immune globulins was unable to protect mice from lethal challenge. Anti-rabies VHH and vaccine act synergistically to protect mice after rabies virus exposure, which further validates the possible use of anti-rabies VHH for rabies PEP. PMID:27483431

  3. An Improved SPH Technique for Fracture Modeling

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Libersky, Larry

    2000-01-01

    .... With these improvements, the MAGI code could solve the enormously complex problem of simulating Behind-Armor-Debris and subsequent interaction of the spall cloud with threat target components as well...

  4. Extended-release niacin/laropiprant significantly improves lipid levels in type 2 diabetes mellitus irrespective of baseline glycemic control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bays HE

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Harold E Bays,1 Eliot A Brinton,2 Joseph Triscari,3 Erluo Chen,3 Darbie Maccubbin,3 Alexandra A MacLean,3 Kendra L Gibson,3 Rae Ann Ruck,3 Amy O Johnson-Levonas,3 Edward A O’Neill,3 Yale B Mitchel3 1Louisville Metabolic & Atherosclerosis Research Center (L-MARC, Louisville, KY, USA; 2Utah Foundation for Biomedical Research, Salt Lake City, UT, USA; 3Merck & Co, Inc., Whitehouse Station, NJ, USA Background: The degree of glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM may alter lipid levels and may alter the efficacy of lipid-modifying agents. Objective: Evaluate the lipid-modifying efficacy of extended-release niacin/laropiprant (ERN/LRPT in subgroups of patients with T2DM with better or poorer glycemic control. Methods: Post hoc analysis of clinical trial data from patients with T2DM who were randomized 4:3 to double-blind ERN/LRPT or placebo (n=796, examining the lipid-modifying effects of ERN/LRPT in patients with glycosylated hemoglobin or fasting plasma glucose levels above and below median baseline levels. Results: At Week 12 of treatment, ERN/LRPT significantly improved low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and lipoprotein (a, compared with placebo, with equal efficacy in patients above or below median baseline glycemic control. Compared with placebo, over 36 weeks of treatment more patients treated with ERN/LRPT had worsening of their diabetes and required intensification of antihyperglycemic medication, irrespective of baseline glycemic control. Incidences of other adverse experiences were generally low in all treatment groups. Conclusion: The lipid-modifying effects of ERN/LRPT are independent of the degree of baseline glycemic control in patients with T2DM (NCT00485758. Keywords: lipid-modifying agents, hyperglycemia, LDL, HDL, triglycerides

  5. [Improvement of genetics teaching using literature-based learning model].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Liang; Liang, Shi-qian; Qin, Hong-yan; Ji, Yong; Han, Hua

    2015-06-01

    Genetics is one of the most important courses for undergraduate students majoring in life science. In recent years, new knowledge and technologies are continually updated with deeper understanding of life science. However, the teaching model of genetics is still based on theoretical instruction, which makes the abstract principles hard to understand by students and directly affects the teaching effect. Thus, exploring a new teaching model is necessary. We have carried out a new teaching model, literature-based learning, in the course on Microbial Genetics for undergraduate students majoring in biotechnology since 2010. Here we comprehensively analyzed the implementation and application value of this model including pre-course knowledge, how to choose professional literature, how to organize teaching process and the significance of developing this new teaching model for students and teachers. Our literature-based learning model reflects the combination of "cutting-edge" and "classic" and makes book knowledge easy to understand, which improves students' learning effect, stimulates their interests, expands their perspectives and develops their ability. This practice provides novel insight into exploring new teaching model of genetics and cultivating medical talents capable of doing both basic and clinical research in the "precision medicine" era.

  6. An Improved Model for the Turbulent PBL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Y.; Canuto, V. M.; Howard, A. M.; Hansen, James E. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Second order turbulence models of the Mellor and Yamada type have been widely used to simulate the PBL. It is however known that these models have several deficiencies. For example, they all predict a critical Richardson number which is about four times smaller than the Large Eddy Simulation (LES) data, they are unable to match the surface data, and they predict a boundary layer height lower than expected. In the present model, we show that these difficulties are all overcome by a single new physical input: the use of the most complete expression for both the pressure-velocity and the pressure-temperature correlations presently available. Each of the new terms represents a physical process that, was not accounted for by previous models. The new model is presented in three different levels according to Mellor and Yamada's terminology, with new, ready-to-use expressions for the turbulent, moments. We show that the new model reproduces several experimental and LES data better than previous models. As far as the PBL is concerned, we show that the model reproduces both the Kansas data as analyzed by Businger et al. in the context of Monin-Obukhov similarity theory for smaller Richardson numbers, as well as the LES and laboratory data up to Richardson numbers of order unity. We also show that the model yields a higher PBL height than the previous models.

  7. Kernel density surface modelling as a means to identify significant concentrations of vulnerable marine ecosystem indicators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ellen Kenchington

    Full Text Available The United Nations General Assembly Resolution 61/105, concerning sustainable fisheries in the marine ecosystem, calls for the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems (VME from destructive fishing practices. Subsequently, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO produced guidelines for identification of VME indicator species/taxa to assist in the implementation of the resolution, but recommended the development of case-specific operational definitions for their application. We applied kernel density estimation (KDE to research vessel trawl survey data from inside the fishing footprint of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO Regulatory Area in the high seas of the northwest Atlantic to create biomass density surfaces for four VME indicator taxa: large-sized sponges, sea pens, small and large gorgonian corals. These VME indicator taxa were identified previously by NAFO using the fragility, life history characteristics and structural complexity criteria presented by FAO, along with an evaluation of their recovery trajectories. KDE, a non-parametric neighbour-based smoothing function, has been used previously in ecology to identify hotspots, that is, areas of relatively high biomass/abundance. We present a novel approach of examining relative changes in area under polygons created from encircling successive biomass categories on the KDE surface to identify "significant concentrations" of biomass, which we equate to VMEs. This allows identification of the VMEs from the broader distribution of the species in the study area. We provide independent assessments of the VMEs so identified using underwater images, benthic sampling with other gear types (dredges, cores, and/or published species distribution models of probability of occurrence, as available. For each VME indicator taxon we provide a brief review of their ecological function which will be important in future assessments of significant adverse impact on these habitats here

  8. Improved hidden Markov model for nosocomial infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khader, Karim; Leecaster, Molly; Greene, Tom; Samore, Matthew; Thomas, Alun

    2014-12-01

    We propose a novel hidden Markov model (HMM) for parameter estimation in hospital transmission models, and show that commonly made simplifying assumptions can lead to severe model misspecification and poor parameter estimates. A standard HMM that embodies two commonly made simplifying assumptions, namely a fixed patient count and binomially distributed detections is compared with a new alternative HMM that does not require these simplifying assumptions. Using simulated data, we demonstrate how each of the simplifying assumptions used by the standard model leads to model misspecification, whereas the alternative model results in accurate parameter estimates. © The Authors 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications. All rights reserved.

  9. Understanding Teacher Effectiveness: Significant State Data Capacity Is Required to Measure and Improve Teacher Effectiveness. Data for Action 2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Data Quality Campaign, 2012

    2012-01-01

    States are increasingly focused on understanding and improving teacher effectiveness. There are several funding opportunities that incentivize states to use data to inform measurements of teacher effectiveness. Local, state, and federal efforts support using data to improve teacher preparation programs. Preparation programs seek "access to data…

  10. Radiogenic heat production variability of some common lithological groups and its significance to lithospheric thermal modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilà, M.; Fernández, M.; Jiménez-Munt, I.

    2010-07-01

    Determining the temperature distribution within the lithosphere requires the knowledge of the radiogenic heat production (RHP) distribution within the crust and the lithospheric mantle. RHP of crustal rocks varies considerably at different scales as a result of the petrogenetic processes responsible for their formation and therefore RHP depends on the considered lithologies. In this work we address RHP variability of some common lithological groups from a compilation of a total of 2188 representative U, Th and K concentrations of different worldwide rock types derived from 102 published studies. To optimize the use of the generated RHP database we have classified and renamed the rock-type denominations of the original works following a petrologic classification scheme with a hierarchical structure. The RHP data of each lithological group is presented in cumulative distribution plots, and we report a table with the mean, the standard deviation, the minimum and maximum values, and the significant percentiles of these lithological groups. We discuss the reported RHP distribution for the different igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic lithological groups from a petrogenetic viewpoint and give some useful guidelines to assign RHP values to lithospheric thermal modeling.

  11. Hidden symmetry in asymmetric morphology: significance of Hjortsjo's anatomical model in liver surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shindoh, Junichi; Satou, Shoichi; Aoki, Taku; Beck, Yoshifumi; Hasegawa, Kiyoshi; Sugawara, Yasuhiko; Kokudo, Norihiro

    2012-01-01

    Several studies have recently reappraised the liver classification proposed by Hjortsjo in the 1940's and reported it as a surgically relevant theory. However, its clinical relevance and significance in liver surgery have not yet been well documented. Three-dimensional (3D) simulations of the livers of 100 healthy donors for living donor liver transplantation were reviewed. The adequacy of Hjortsjo's model was evaluated using 3D simulations and its clinical relevance was demonstrated in donor surgery. Both portal and hepatic venous branches exhibited symmetrical configuration on either side of the Rex-Cantlie line on the 3D images. In terms of the symmetry, the right paramedian sector seemed to be subdivided into two longitudinal parts, namely the "ventral" and "dorsal" parts. Volume analysis revealed that these longitudinal parts occupied relatively large areas of the liver (the ventral part, 15.7% and the dorsal part, 20.9% of the whole livers, respectively). Postoperative CT imaging confirmed marked congestion and/or impaired regeneration of these areas due to deprivation of the middle or right hepatic veins. Considering the symmetry of intrahepatic vascular distributions and clinical relevance, Hjortsjo's classification offers important viewpoint for surgeons to handle the liver based on both the portal and venous distributions.

  12. High-fat diet induces significant metabolic disorders in a mouse model of polycystic ovary syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Hao; Jia, Xiao; Yu, Qiuxiao; Zhang, Chenglu; Qiao, Jie; Guan, Youfei; Kang, Jihong

    2014-11-01

    Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common female endocrinopathy associated with both reproductive and metabolic disorders. Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is currently used to induce a PCOS mouse model. High-fat diet (HFD) has been shown to cause obesity and infertility in female mice. The possible effect of an HFD on the phenotype of DHEA-induced PCOS mice is unknown. The aim of the present study was to investigate both reproductive and metabolic features of DHEA-induced PCOS mice fed a normal chow or a 60% HFD. Prepubertal C57BL/6 mice (age 25 days) on the normal chow or an HFD were injected (s.c.) daily with the vehicle sesame oil or DHEA for 20 consecutive days. At the end of the experiment, both reproductive and metabolic characteristics were assessed. Our data show that an HFD did not affect the reproductive phenotype of DHEA-treated mice. The treatment of HFD, however, caused significant metabolic alterations in DHEA-treated mice, including obesity, glucose intolerance, dyslipidemia, and pronounced liver steatosis. These findings suggest that HFD induces distinct metabolic features in DHEA-induced PCOS mice. The combined DHEA and HFD treatment may thus serve as a means of studying the mechanisms involved in metabolic derangements of this syndrome, particularly in the high prevalence of hepatic steatosis in women with PCOS. © 2014 by the Society for the Study of Reproduction, Inc.

  13. Improving the physiological realism of experimental models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vinnakota, Kalyan C.; Cha, Chae Y.; Rorsman, Patrik; Balaban, Robert S.; La Gerche, Andre; Wade-Martins, Richard; Beard, Daniel A.; Jeneson, Jeroen A. L.

    The Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) project aims to develop integrative, explanatory and predictive computational models (C-Models) as numerical investigational tools to study disease, identify and design effective therapies and provide an in silico platform for drug screening. Ultimately, these

  14. Improved diagnostic model for estimating wind energy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Endlich, R.M.; Lee, J.D.

    1983-03-01

    Because wind data are available only at scattered locations, a quantitative method is needed to estimate the wind resource at specific sites where wind energy generation may be economically feasible. This report describes a computer model that makes such estimates. The model uses standard weather reports and terrain heights in deriving wind estimates; the method of computation has been changed from what has been used previously. The performance of the current model is compared with that of the earlier version at three sites; estimates of wind energy at four new sites are also presented.

  15. Methylphenidate significantly improves driving performance of adults with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder: a randomized crossover trial.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verster, J.C.; Bekker, E.M.; Roos, M.; Minova, A.; Eijken, E.J.; Kooij, J.J.S.; Buitelaar, J.K.; Kenemans, J.L.; Verbaten, M.N.; Olivier, B.; Volkerts, E.R.

    2008-01-01

    Although patients with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have reported improved driving performance on methylphenidate, limited evidence exists to support an effect of treatment on driving performance and some regions prohibit driving on methylphenidate. A randomized, crossover trial

  16. More Use of Peritoneal Dialysis Gives Significant Savings: A Systematic Review and Health Economic Decision Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pike, Eva; Hamidi, Vida; Ringerike, Tove; Wisloff, Torbjorn; Klemp, Marianne

    2017-02-01

    Patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) are in need of renal replacement therapy as dialysis and/or transplantation. The prevalence of ESRD and, thus, the need for dialysis are constantly growing. The dialysis modalities are either peritoneal performed at home or hemodialysis (HD) performed in-center (hospital or satellite) or home. We examined effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of HD performed at different locations (hospital, satellite, and home) and peritoneal dialysis (PD) at home in the Norwegian setting. We conducted a systematic review for patients above 18 years with end-stage renal failure requiring dialysis in several databases and performed several meta-analyses of existing literature. Mortality and major complications that required were our main clinical outcomes. The quality of the evidence for each outcome was evaluated using GRADE. Cost-effectiveness was assessed by developing a probabilistic Markov model. The analysis was carried out from a societal perspective, and effects were expressed in quality-adjusted life-years. Uncertainties in the base-case parameter values were explored with a probabilistic sensitivity analysis. Scenario analyses were conducted by increasing the proportion of patients receiving PD with a corresponding reduction in HD patients in-center both for Norway and Europian Union. We assumed an annual growth rate of 4% in the number of dialysis patients, and a relative distribution between PD and HD in-center of 30% and 70%, respectively. From a societal perspective and over a 5-year time horizon, PD was the most cost-effective dialysis alternative. We found no significant difference in mortality between peritoneal and HD modalities. Our scenario analyses showed that a shift toward more patients on PD (as a first choice) with a corresponding reduction in HD in-center gave a saving over a 5-year period of 32 and 10,623 million EURO, respectively, for Norway and the European Union. PD was the most cost-effective dialysis

  17. Theoretical models regarding factors influencing switching regimes and the hydrological and erosional significance of hydrophobicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Rory; Urbanek, Emilia; Ferreira, Carla; Shakesby, Richard; Bento, Celia; Ferreira, Antonio

    2013-04-01

    The influence which soil hydrophobicity may have on hillslope hydrology and erosion in any location will depend on the proportion of storm events in which it is spatially contiguous. This in turn is dependent upon (a) the speed and three-dimensional pattern with which it disappears in wet weather and (b) the speed, three-dimensional pattern and degree of re-establishment of hydrophobicity in dry weather following hydrophilic or partially hydrophilic episodes. This paper draws upon results of laboratory and field investigations of changes through time in hydrophobicity, as well as recent advances in knowledge of switching mechanisms, to develop theory relating to hydrophobicity, its three-dimensional temporal dynamics and controls and its influence on overland flow and slopewash. Particular attention is given to modelling temporal change following fire. Use is made of key findings from (1) a field study of changes over a 4.2-year period January 2009 to March 2013 in hydrophobicity at two 10 m x 10 m grids (270 points, surface and 5 cm depth) on heather moorland in Central Portugal, where one grid was burned by an experimental fire in February 2009 and the other was an immediately adjacent unburned control; (2) a laboratory study of three-dimensional change in hydrophobicity with wetting (by an 8 mm simulated rainfall) and at different stages in an 80-hour drying phase of three different but initially equally hydrophobic soils, each of which comprising variants with and without artificial vertical routeways (simulated roots or linear cracks) and with or without drainage impedance at 2.5 cm depth. A series of theoretical models are presented addressing 1) factors and mechanisms influencing post-fire temporal change in hydrophobicity and (2) factors and mechanisms controlling the significance and temporal dynamics of hydrophobicity influence on overland flow and erosion (i) in unburned terrain and (ii) following fire. The field evidence from Portugal suggests a three

  18. Comparison of Far-field Noise for Three Significantly Different Model Turbofans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodward, Richard P.

    2008-01-01

    Far-field noise sound power level (PWL) spectra and overall sound pressure level (OASPL) directivities were compared for three significantly different model fan stages which were tested in the NASA Glenn 9 15 Low Speed Wind Tunnel. The test fans included the Advanced Ducted Propulsor (ADP) Fan1, the baseline Source Diagnostic Test (SDT) fan, and the Quiet High Speed Fan2 (QHSF2). These fans had design rotor tangential tip speeds from 840 to 1474 ft/s and stage pressure ratios from 1.29 to 1.82. Additional parameters included rotor-stator spacing, stator sweep, and downstream support struts. Acoustic comparison points were selected on the basis of stage thrust. Acoustic results for the low tip speed/low pressure ratio fan (ADP Fan1) were thrust-adjusted to show how a geometrically-scaled version of this fan might compare at the higher design thrust levels of the other two fans. Lowest noise levels were typically observed for ADP Fan1 (which had a radial stator) and for the intermediate tip speed fan (Source Diagnostics Test, SDT, R4 rotor) with a swept stator. Projected noise levels for the ADP fan to the SDT swept stator configuration at design point conditions showed the fans to have similar noise levels. However, it is possible that the ADP fan could be 2 to 3 dB quieter with incorporation of a swept stator. Benefits of a scaled ADP fan include avoidance of multiple pure tones associated with transonic and higher blade tip speeds. Penalties of a larger size ADP fan would include increased nacelle size and drag.

  19. Improving Baseline Model Assumptions: Evaluating the Impacts of Typical Methodological Approaches in Watershed Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muenich, R. L.; Kalcic, M. M.; Teshager, A. D.; Long, C. M.; Wang, Y. C.; Scavia, D.

    2017-12-01

    Thanks to the availability of open-source software, online tutorials, and advanced software capabilities, watershed modeling has expanded its user-base and applications significantly in the past thirty years. Even complicated models like the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) are being used and documented in hundreds of peer-reviewed publications each year, and likely more applied in practice. These models can help improve our understanding of present, past, and future conditions, or analyze important "what-if" management scenarios. However, baseline data and methods are often adopted and applied without rigorous testing. In multiple collaborative projects, we have evaluated the influence of some of these common approaches on model results. Specifically, we examined impacts of baseline data and assumptions involved in manure application, combined sewer overflows, and climate data incorporation across multiple watersheds in the Western Lake Erie Basin. In these efforts, we seek to understand the impact of using typical modeling data and assumptions, versus using improved data and enhanced assumptions on model outcomes and thus ultimately, study conclusions. We provide guidance for modelers as they adopt and apply data and models for their specific study region. While it is difficult to quantitatively assess the full uncertainty surrounding model input data and assumptions, recognizing the impacts of model input choices is important when considering actions at the both the field and watershed scales.

  20. A Model to Improve the Quality Products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hasan GOKKAYA

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available The topic of this paper is to present a solution who can improve product qualityfollowing the idea: “Unlike people who have verbal skills, machines use "sign language"to communicate what hurts or what has invaded their system’. Recognizing the "signs"or symptoms that the machine conveys is a required skill for those who work withmachines and are responsible for their care and feeding. The acoustic behavior of technical products is predominantly defined in the design stage, although the acoustic characteristics of machine structures can be analyze and give a solution for the actual products and create a new generation of products. The paper describes the steps intechnological process for a product and the solution who will reduce the costs with the non-quality of product and improve the management quality.

  1. Improved Model of a Mercury Ring Damper

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fahrenthold, Eric P.; Shivarma, Ravishankar

    2009-01-01

    A short document discusses the general problem of mathematical modeling of the three-dimensional rotational dynamics of rigid bodies and of the use of Euler parameters to eliminate the singularities occasioned by the use of Euler angles in such modeling. The document goes on to characterize a Hamiltonian model, developed by the authors, that utilizes the Euler parameters and, hence, is suitable for use in computational simulations that involve arbitrary rotational motion. In this formulation unlike in prior Euler-parameter-based formulations, there are no algebraic constraints. This formulation includes a general potential energy function, incorporates a minimum set of momentum variables, and takes an explicit state-space form convenient for numerical implementation. Practical application of this formulation has been demonstrated by the development of a new and simplified model of the rotational motion of a rigid rotor to which is attached a partially filled mercury ring damper. Models like this one are used in guidance and control of spin-stabilized spacecraft and gyroscope-stabilized seekers in guided missiles.

  2. Improved Model Calibration From Genetically Adaptive Multi-Method Search

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vrugt, J. A.; Robinson, B. A.

    2006-12-01

    Evolutionary optimization is a subject of intense interest in many fields of study, including computational chemistry, biology, bio-informatics, economics, computational science, geophysics and environmental science. The goal is to determine values for model parameters or state variables that provide the best possible solution to a predefined cost or objective function, or a set of optimal trade-off values in the case of two or more conflicting objectives. However, locating optimal solutions often turns out to be painstakingly tedious, or even completely beyond current or projected computational capacity. Here we present an innovative concept of genetically adaptive multi-algorithm optimization. Benchmark results show that this new optimization technique is significantly more efficient than current state-of-the-art evolutionary algorithms, approaching a factor of ten improvement for the more complex, higher dimensional optimization problems. Our new algorithm provides new opportunities for solving previously intractable environmental model calibration problems.

  3. Improving Expression Power in Modeling OLAP Hierarchies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malinowski, Elzbieta

    Data warehouses and OLAP systems form an integral part of modern decision support systems. In order to exploit both systems to their full capabilities hierarchies must be clearly defined. Hierarchies are important in analytical applications, since they provide users with the possibility to represent data at different abstraction levels. However, even though there are different kinds of hierarchies in real-world applications and some are already implemented in commercial tools, there is still a lack of a well-accepted conceptual model that allows decision-making users express their analysis needs. In this paper, we show how the conceptual multidimensional model can be used to facilitate the representation of complex hierarchies in comparison to their representation in the relational model and commercial OLAP tool, using as an example Microsoft Analysis Services.

  4. Improved Maximum Parsimony Models for Phylogenetic Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Iersel, Leo; Jones, Mark; Scornavacca, Celine

    2018-05-01

    Phylogenetic networks are well suited to represent evolutionary histories comprising reticulate evolution. Several methods aiming at reconstructing explicit phylogenetic networks have been developed in the last two decades. In this article, we propose a new definition of maximum parsimony for phylogenetic networks that permits to model biological scenarios that cannot be modeled by the definitions currently present in the literature (namely, the "hardwired" and "softwired" parsimony). Building on this new definition, we provide several algorithmic results that lay the foundations for new parsimony-based methods for phylogenetic network reconstruction.

  5. An improved Burgers cellular automaton model for bicycle flow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Shuqi; Jia, Bin; Jiang, Rui; Li, Xingang; Shan, Jingjing

    2017-12-01

    As an energy-efficient and healthy transport mode, bicycling has recently attracted the attention of governments, transport planners, and researchers. The dynamic characteristics of the bicycle flow must be investigated to improve the facility design and traffic operation of bicycling. We model the bicycle flow by using an improved Burgers cellular automaton model. Through a following move mechanism, the modified model enables bicycles to move smoothly and increase the critical density to a more rational level than the original model. The model is calibrated and validated by using experimental data and field data. The results show that the improved model can effectively simulate the bicycle flow. The performance of the model under different parameters is investigated and discussed. Strengths and limitations of the improved model are suggested for future work.

  6. General Equilibrium Models: Improving the Microeconomics Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholson, Walter; Westhoff, Frank

    2009-01-01

    General equilibrium models now play important roles in many fields of economics including tax policy, environmental regulation, international trade, and economic development. The intermediate microeconomics classroom has not kept pace with these trends, however. Microeconomics textbooks primarily focus on the insights that can be drawn from the…

  7. Hybrid Modeling Improves Health and Performance Monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-01-01

    Scientific Monitoring Inc. was awarded a Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) project by NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center to create a new, simplified health-monitoring approach for flight vehicles and flight equipment. The project developed a hybrid physical model concept that provided a structured approach to simplifying complex design models for use in health monitoring, allowing the output or performance of the equipment to be compared to what the design models predicted, so that deterioration or impending failure could be detected before there would be an impact on the equipment's operational capability. Based on the original modeling technology, Scientific Monitoring released I-Trend, a commercial health- and performance-monitoring software product named for its intelligent trending, diagnostics, and prognostics capabilities, as part of the company's complete ICEMS (Intelligent Condition-based Equipment Management System) suite of monitoring and advanced alerting software. I-Trend uses the hybrid physical model to better characterize the nature of health or performance alarms that result in "no fault found" false alarms. Additionally, the use of physical principles helps I-Trend identify problems sooner. I-Trend technology is currently in use in several commercial aviation programs, and the U.S. Air Force recently tapped Scientific Monitoring to develop next-generation engine health-management software for monitoring its fleet of jet engines. Scientific Monitoring has continued the original NASA work, this time under a Phase III SBIR contract with a joint NASA-Pratt & Whitney aviation security program on propulsion-controlled aircraft under missile-damaged aircraft conditions.

  8. Soil hydraulic properties near saturation, an improved conductivity model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Børgesen, Christen Duus; Jacobsen, Ole Hørbye; Hansen, Søren

    2006-01-01

    of commonly used hydraulic conductivity models and give suggestions for improved models. Water retention and near saturated and saturated hydraulic conductivity were measured for a variety of 81 top and subsoils. The hydraulic conductivity models by van Genuchten [van Genuchten, 1980. A closed-form equation....... Reports and Dissertations 9.] were optimised to describe the unsaturated hydraulic conductivity in the range measured. Different optimisation procedures were tested. Using the measured saturated hydraulic conductivity in the vGM model tends to overestimate the unsaturated hydraulic conductivity....... Optimising a matching factor (k0) improved the fit considerably whereas optimising the l-parameter in the vGM model improved the fit only slightly. The vGM was improved with an empirical scaling function to account for the rapid increase in conductivity near saturation. Using the improved models...

  9. Significant Improvement in Sleep in People with Intellectual Disabilities Living in Residential Settings by Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hylkema, T.; Vlaskamp, C.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Although about 15 to 50 percent of people with intellectual disabilities (ID) living in residential settings suffer from sleep problems, scant attention is paid to these problems. Most available studies focus on pharmaceutical solutions. In this study we focus on improving sleep in people with intellectual disabilities living in…

  10. Significant survival improvement of patients with recurrent breast cancer in the periods 2001-2008 vs. 1992-2000

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nishimura Sumiko

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It is unclear whether individualized treatments based on biological factors have improved the prognosis of recurrent breast cancer. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the survival improvement of patients with recurrent breast cancer after the introduction of third generation aromatase inhibitors (AIs and trastuzumab. Methods A total of 407 patients who received first diagnosis of recurrent breast cancer and treatment at National Kyushu Cancer Center between 1992 and 2008 were retrospectively evaluated. As AIs and trastuzumab were approved for clinical use in Japan in 2001, the patients were divided into two time cohorts depending on whether the cancer recurred before or after 2001. Cohort A: 170 patients who were diagnosed between 1992 and 2000. Cohort B: 237 patients who were diagnosed between 2001 and 2008. Tumor characteristics, treatments, and outcome were compared. Results Fourteen percent of cohort A and 76% of cohort B received AIs and/or trastuzumab (P Conclusions The prognosis of patients with recurrent breast cancer was improved over time following the introduction of AIs and trastuzumab and the survival improvement was apparent in HR- and/or HER-2-positive tumors.

  11. Improvement of core degradation model in ISAAC

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Dong Ha; Kim, See Darl; Park, Soo Yong

    2004-02-01

    If water inventory in the fuel channels depletes and fuel rods are exposed to steam after uncover in the pressure tube, the decay heat generated from fuel rods is transferred to the pressure tube and to the calandria tube by radiation, and finally to the moderator in the calandria tank by conduction. During this process, the cladding will be heated first and ballooned when the fuel gap internal pressure exceeds the primary system pressure. The pressure tube will be also ballooned and will touch the calandria tube, increasing heat transfer rate to the moderator. Although these situation is not desirable, the fuel channel is expected to maintain its integrity as long as the calandria tube is submerged in the moderator, because the decay heat could be removed to the moderator through radiation and conduction. Therefore, loss of coolant and moderator inside and outside the channel may cause severe core damage including horizontal fuel channel sagging and finally loss of channel integrity. The sagged channels contact with the channels located below and lose their heat transfer area to the moderator. As the accident goes further, the disintegrated fuel channels will be heated up and relocated onto the bottom of the calandria tank. If the temperature of these relocated materials is high enough to attack the calandria tank, the calandria tank would fail and molten material would contact with the calandria vault water. Steam explosion and/or rapid steam generation from this interaction may threaten containment integrity. Though a detailed model is required to simulate the severe accident at CANDU plants, complexity of phenomena itself and inner structures as well as lack of experimental data forces to choose a simple but reasonable model as the first step. ISAAC 1.0 was developed to model the basic physicochemical phenomena during the severe accident progression. At present, ISAAC 2.0 is being developed for accident management guide development and strategy evaluation. In

  12. Improvement of core degradation model in ISAAC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Dong Ha; Kim, See Darl; Park, Soo Yong

    2004-02-01

    If water inventory in the fuel channels depletes and fuel rods are exposed to steam after uncover in the pressure tube, the decay heat generated from fuel rods is transferred to the pressure tube and to the calandria tube by radiation, and finally to the moderator in the calandria tank by conduction. During this process, the cladding will be heated first and ballooned when the fuel gap internal pressure exceeds the primary system pressure. The pressure tube will be also ballooned and will touch the calandria tube, increasing heat transfer rate to the moderator. Although these situation is not desirable, the fuel channel is expected to maintain its integrity as long as the calandria tube is submerged in the moderator, because the decay heat could be removed to the moderator through radiation and conduction. Therefore, loss of coolant and moderator inside and outside the channel may cause severe core damage including horizontal fuel channel sagging and finally loss of channel integrity. The sagged channels contact with the channels located below and lose their heat transfer area to the moderator. As the accident goes further, the disintegrated fuel channels will be heated up and relocated onto the bottom of the calandria tank. If the temperature of these relocated materials is high enough to attack the calandria tank, the calandria tank would fail and molten material would contact with the calandria vault water. Steam explosion and/or rapid steam generation from this interaction may threaten containment integrity. Though a detailed model is required to simulate the severe accident at CANDU plants, complexity of phenomena itself and inner structures as well as lack of experimental data forces to choose a simple but reasonable model as the first step. ISAAC 1.0 was developed to model the basic physicochemical phenomena during the severe accident progression. At present, ISAAC 2.0 is being developed for accident management guide development and strategy evaluation. In

  13. Improving Flood Damage Assessment Models in Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amadio, M.; Mysiak, J.; Carrera, L.; Koks, E.

    2015-12-01

    The use of Stage-Damage Curve (SDC) models is prevalent in ex-ante assessments of flood risk. To assess the potential damage of a flood event, SDCs describe a relation between water depth and the associated potential economic damage over land use. This relation is normally developed and calibrated through site-specific analysis based on ex-post damage observations. In some cases (e.g. Italy) SDCs are transferred from other countries, undermining the accuracy and reliability of simulation results. Against this background, we developed a refined SDC model for Northern Italy, underpinned by damage compensation records from a recent flood event. Our analysis considers both damage to physical assets and production losses from business interruptions. While the first is calculated based on land use information, production losses are measured through the spatial distribution of Gross Value Added (GVA). An additional component of the model assesses crop-specific agricultural losses as a function of flood seasonality. Our results show an overestimation of asset damage from non-calibrated SDC values up to a factor of 4.5 for tested land use categories. Furthermore, we estimate that production losses amount to around 6 per cent of the annual GVA. Also, maximum yield losses are less than a half of the amount predicted by the standard SDC methods.

  14. An Improved MUSIC Model for Gibbsite Surfaces

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mitchell, Scott C.; Bickmore, Barry R.; Tadanier, Christopher J.; Rosso, Kevin M.

    2004-06-01

    Here we use gibbsite as a model system with which to test a recently published, bond-valence method for predicting intrinsic pKa values for surface functional groups on oxides. At issue is whether the method is adequate when valence parameters for the functional groups are derived from ab initio structure optimization of surfaces terminated by vacuum. If not, ab initio molecular dynamics (AIMD) simulations of solvated surfaces (which are much more computationally expensive) will have to be used. To do this, we had to evaluate extant gibbsite potentiometric titration data that where some estimate of edge and basal surface area was available. Applying BET and recently developed atomic force microscopy methods, we found that most of these data sets were flawed, in that their surface area estimates were probably wrong. Similarly, there may have been problems with many of the titration procedures. However, one data set was adequate on both counts, and we applied our method of surface pKa int prediction to fitting a MUSIC model to this data with considerable success—several features of the titration data were predicted well. However, the model fit was certainly not perfect, and we experienced some difficulties optimizing highly charged, vacuum-terminated surfaces. Therefore, we conclude that we probably need to do AIMD simulations of solvated surfaces to adequately predict intrinsic pKa values for surface functional groups.

  15. Can explicit convection improve modeled dust in summertime West Africa?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, A. J.; Woodage, M. J.; Marsham, J. H.; Highwood, E. J.; Ryder, C. L.; McGinty, W.; Crook, J. A.

    2017-12-01

    Global and regional models have large errors in modeled dust fields over West Africa. Parameterized moist convection in models gives a very poor representation of haboobs (an important dust uplift mechanism). This is true for climate models, numerical weather prediction and even reanalyses. Recent work on near-surface winds from the Fennec and AMMA field campaigns has shown that analyzed winds (ERA-Interim) require improvement to represent key mechanisms that lift dust. Specifically there is: (1) a deficit of occurrence of rare high wind speed events, (2) an under-representation of diurnal and seasonal variability, and (3) poor correlation between observed and analyzed winds during the West African Monsoon season, even in regions far from the northern edge of the monsoon flow. Here, we test the hypothesis that explicit convection improves haboob winds and reduces errors in modeled dust fields. This study compares satellite AOD retrievals and surface wind observations with a suite of five-month, large-domain simulations with prognostic dust over the Sahel and Sahara. The results show that despite varying both grid-spacing and the representation of moist convection there are only minor changes in dust metrics. In all simulations there is an AOD deficit over the observed central Saharan dust maximum and a high bias in AOD along the west coast: both features are consistent with climate models (CMIP5). Cold pools are present in simulations with explicit convection leading to an improved diurnal cycle in dust-generating winds. However, this does not change the AOD field significantly because: (1) the evening haboob peak is offset by a reduction in strength of the nocturnal low level jet, (2) simulated haboobs are weaker and less frequent than observed, especially close to the observed summertime Saharan dust maximum, and (3) Sahelian cold pools (that raise dust in reality), do not raise dust in the simulations due to a seasonally constant bare soil fraction and soil

  16. Chemotherapy Significantly Improves Survival for Patients with T1c-T2N0M0 Medullary Breast Cancer: 3739 Cases From the National Cancer Data Base.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mateo, Alina M; Pezzi, Todd A; Sundermeyer, Mark; Kelley, Cynthia A; Klimberg, V Suzanne; Pezzi, Christopher M

    2017-04-01

    Medullary breast cancer (MBC) is a rare tumor associated with a better prognosis compared with other breast cancers. The role of adjuvant chemotherapy has not been extensively studied. Female patients with invasive MBC reported to the National Cancer Data Base from 2004 to 2012 were analyzed. Overall survival (OS) and treatment were studied using the Kaplan-Meier method and the Cox proportional hazard model. Patients who had node-negative (N0), non-metastatic (M0) tumors 10 to 50 mm in size (T1cN0M0 and T2N0M0) treated with and without chemotherapy were analyzed using propensity score matching. Of 3739 patients with MBC, 2642 (71%) had T1b-T2N0M0 disease treated with and without chemotherapy. Multivariable analysis showed that for all MBC patients, the significant predictors of OS were age older than 65 years, one or more comorbidities, tumor larger than 2 cm, positive nodes, distant metastasis, and treatment with chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Patients with T1cN0M0 and T2N0M0 had improved OS if they received chemotherapy (p < 0.0005). Patients with T1bN0M0 who received chemotherapy did not show better OS than those who did not. Patients with T1c-T2N0M0 were then matched by propensity score based on age, presence of comorbidities, tumor size, and treatment methods used. After matching, the group receiving chemotherapy showed an improved OS (hazard ratio [HR], 0.40; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.26-0.62; p < 0.0005) compared to the group that did not receive chemotherapy. For patients with T1c-T2N0M0 MBC, chemotherapy significantly improves OS.

  17. Capability Maturity Model (CMM) for Software Process Improvements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ling, Robert Y.

    2000-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the Avionic Systems Division's implementation of the Capability Maturity Model (CMM) for improvements in the software development process. The presentation reviews the process involved in implementing the model and the benefits of using CMM to improve the software development process.

  18. Modeling and improving Ethiopian pasture systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parisi, S G; Cola, G; Gilioli, G; Mariani, L

    2018-01-03

    The production of pasture in Ethiopia was simulated by means of a dynamic model. Most of the country is characterized by a tropical monsoon climate with mild temperatures and precipitation mainly concentrated in the June-September period (main rainy season). The production model is driven by solar radiation and takes into account limitations due to relocation, maintenance respiration, conversion to final dry matter, temperature, water stress, and nutrients availability. The model also considers the senescence of grassland which strongly limits the nutritional value of grasses for livestock. The simulation for the 1982-2009 period, performed on gridded daily time series of rainfall and maximum and minimum temperature with a resolution of 0.5°, provided results comparable with values reported in literature. Yearly mean yield in Ethiopia ranged between 1.8 metric ton per hectare (t ha -1 ) (2002) and 2.6 t ha -1 (1989) of dry matter with values above 2.5 t ha -1 attained in 1983, 1985, 1989, and 2008. The Ethiopian territory has been subdivided in 1494 cells and a frequency distribution of the per-cell yearly mean pasture production has been obtained. This distribution ranges from 0 to 7 t ha -1 and it shows a right skewed distribution and a modal class between 1.5-2 t ha -1 . Simulation carried out on long time series for this peculiar tropical environment give rise to as lot of results relevant by the agroecological point of view on space variability of pasture production, main limiting factors (solar radiation, precipitation, temperature), and relevant meteo-climatic cycles affecting pasture production (seasonal and inter yearly variability, ENSO). These results are useful to establish an agro-ecological zoning of the Ethiopian territory.

  19. Significance of predictive models/risk calculators for HBV-related hepatocellular carcinoma

    OpenAIRE

    DONG Jing

    2015-01-01

    Hepatitis B virus (HBV)-related hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a major public health problem in Southeast Asia. In recent years, researchers from Hong Kong and Taiwan have reported predictive models or risk calculators for HBV-associated HCC by studying its natural history, which, to some extent, predicts the possibility of HCC development. Generally, risk factors of each model involve age, sex, HBV DNA level, and liver cirrhosis. This article discusses the evolution and clinical significa...

  20. QUALITY IMPROVEMENT MODEL AT THE MANUFACTURING PROCESS PREPARATION LEVEL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dusko Pavletic

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The paper expresses base for an operational quality improvement model at the manufacturing process preparation level. A numerous appropriate related quality assurance and improvement methods and tools are identified. Main manufacturing process principles are investigated in order to scrutinize one general model of manufacturing process and to define a manufacturing process preparation level. Development and introduction of the operational quality improvement model is based on a research conducted and results of methods and tools application possibilities in real manufacturing processes shipbuilding and automotive industry. Basic model structure is described and presented by appropriate general algorithm. Operational quality improvement model developed lays down main guidelines for practical and systematic application of quality improvements methods and tools.

  1. Improved CHAID algorithm for document structure modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belaïd, A.; Moinel, T.; Rangoni, Y.

    2010-01-01

    This paper proposes a technique for the logical labelling of document images. It makes use of a decision-tree based approach to learn and then recognise the logical elements of a page. A state-of-the-art OCR gives the physical features needed by the system. Each block of text is extracted during the layout analysis and raw physical features are collected and stored in the ALTO format. The data-mining method employed here is the "Improved CHi-squared Automatic Interaction Detection" (I-CHAID). The contribution of this work is the insertion of logical rules extracted from the logical layout knowledge to support the decision tree. Two setups have been tested; the first uses one tree per logical element, the second one uses a single tree for all the logical elements we want to recognise. The main system, implemented in Java, coordinates the third-party tools (Omnipage for the OCR part, and SIPINA for the I-CHAID algorithm) using XML and XSL transforms. It was tested on around 1000 documents belonging to the ICPR'04 and ICPR'08 conference proceedings, representing about 16,000 blocks. The final error rate for determining the logical labels (among 9 different ones) is less than 6%.

  2. Estuarine modeling: Does a higher grid resolution improve model performance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecological models are useful tools to explore cause effect relationships, test hypothesis and perform management scenarios. A mathematical model, the Gulf of Mexico Dissolved Oxygen Model (GoMDOM), has been developed and applied to the Louisiana continental shelf of the northern ...

  3. Pion and an improved static bag model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Donoghue, J.F.; Johnson, K.

    1980-04-01

    Quark-model calculations involve an extended static object localized in space. We introduce new methods, involving momentum-space wave packets, which account for this localization. These methods have little effect on heavy states, whose sizes are large compared to their Compton size 1/m, but are very important for light particles such as the pion. In this treatment the pion's mass is naturally very small, and, in order to connect with a spontaneously broken chiral symmetry, we require that m/sub ..pi../ vanish when the light quarks are massless. Expanding about this limit (and also readjusting the fit to other hadrons), we obtain m/sub q/=(m-italic/sub u/+m/sub d/)/2=33 MeV. We calculate F/sub ..pi../ approx. = 145 MeV (using a normalization such that F/sub ..pi../ vertical-bar /sub exp/=93 MeV), F/sub K//F/sub ..pi../ approx. = 1, and various corrections to static properties of baryons. In addition we explore the relationship of our methods with chiral perturbation theory, deriving the formula m/sub ..pi../ /sup 2/=(m-italic/sub u/+m/sub d/) < ..pi..(p) vertical-bar q-bar(0)q(0) vertical-bar ..pi..(p) > in the appropriate approximation and commenting on the quark mass obtained from the nucleon's sigma term. Finally we discuss the bag model's use of the scalar density q-barq as an order parameter describing the separation of the spontaneously broken vacuum phase from the perturbative vacuum of the bag's interior.

  4. Significance of kinetics for sorption on inorganic colloids: modeling and experiment interpretation issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Painter, S; Cvetkovic, V; Pickett, D; Turner, D R

    2002-12-15

    A two-site kinetic model for solute sorption on inorganic colloids is developed. The model quantifies linear first-order sorption on two types of sites ("fast" and "slow") characterized by two pairs of rates (forward and reverse). We use the model to explore data requirements for long-term predictive calculations of colloid-facilitated transport and to evaluate laboratory kinetic sorption data of Lu et al.. Five batch sorption data sets are considered with plutonium as the tracer and montmorillonite, hematite, silica, and smectite as colloids. Using asymptotic results applicable on the time scale of limited duration experiments, a robust estimation procedure is developed for the fast-site partitioning coefficient K(C) and the slow forward rate alpha. The estimated range of K(C) is 1.1-76 L/g, and the range for alpha is 0.0017-0.02 1/h. The fast reverse rate k(r) is estimated in the range 0.012-0.1 1/h. Comparison of one-site and two-site sorption interpretations reveals the difficulty in discriminating between the two models for montmorillonite and to a lesser extent for hematite. For silica and smectite, the two-site model clearly provides a better representation of the data as compared with a single site model. Kinetic data for silica are available for different colloid concentrations (0.2 g/L and 1 g/L). For the range of experimental conditions considered, alpha appears to be independent of colloid concentration.

  5. Accelerating quality improvement within your organization: Applying the Model for Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowl, Ashley; Sharma, Anita; Sorge, Lindsay; Sorensen, Todd

    2015-01-01

    To discuss the fundamentals of the Model for Improvement and how the model can be applied to quality improvement activities associated with medication use, including understanding the three essential questions that guide quality improvement, applying a process for actively testing change within an organization, and measuring the success of these changes on care delivery. PubMed from 1990 through April 2014 using the search terms quality improvement, process improvement, hospitals, and primary care. At the authors' discretion, studies were selected based on their relevance in demonstrating the quality improvement process and tests of change within an organization. Organizations are continuously seeking to enhance quality in patient care services, and much of this work focuses on improving care delivery processes. Yet change in these systems is often slow, which can lead to frustration or apathy among frontline practitioners. Adopting and applying the Model for Improvement as a core strategy for quality improvement efforts can accelerate the process. While the model is frequently well known in hospitals and primary care settings, it is not always familiar to pharmacists. In addition, while some organizations may be familiar with the "plan, do, study, act" (PDSA) cycles-one element of the Model for Improvement-many do not apply it effectively. The goal of the model is to combine a continuous process of small tests of change (PDSA cycles) within an overarching aim with a longitudinal measurement process. This process differs from other forms of improvement work that plan and implement large-scale change over an extended period, followed by months of data collection. In this scenario it may take months or years to determine whether an intervention will have a positive impact. By following the Model for Improvement, frontline practitioners and their organizational leaders quickly identify strategies that make a positive difference and result in a greater degree of

  6. Internal Catchment Data for Improved Model Diagnosis and Calibration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodrich, D. C.; Srinivasan, M.; McMillan, H.; Duncan, M.; Yatheendradas, S.; Wagener, T.; Clark, M.; Martinez, G.; Gupta, H.; Jackson, B.; Schmidt, J.; Woods, R.

    2008-12-01

    There have been numerous calls for the need to incorporate internal catchment observations for improving distributed catchment models. Recent results from a synthetic study by van Werkhoven et al., (GRL, 2008) imply that the relative worth of internal catchment observations for providing information to improve downstream predictions is limited to a time-varying zone, or cone of influence - that is, different observing points have explanatory power for different parts of the catchment at different times. In their study the spatial extent of this cone of influence is significantly influenced by a number of factors; primarily spatiotemporal precipitation patterns; but also initial conditions and inherent observational and model uncertainties. To explore this concept further two intensively instrumented experimental catchments, near end members of the hydro-climatic spectrum, with extensive internal observations were selected. The first is the 50 square kilometer Mahurangi Experimental Catchment located on the north island of New Zealand with mean annual rainfall and runoff of approximately 1700, and 870 mm, respectively. The second is the 148 square kilometer Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed located in southeast Arizona, USA with respective mean annual rainfall and runoff of 325, and 2 mm. Data analysis and stepwise, spatially-explicit model calibration was conducted in each of these watersheds. Results from these analyses, in the context of the worth of internal runoff observations will be presented. van Werkhoven, K., T. Wagener, P. Reed, and Y. Tang (2008), Rainfall characteristics define the value of streamflow observations for distributed watershed model identification, Geophys. Res. Lett., 35, L11403, doi:10.1029/2008GL034162.

  7. Does NASA SMAP Improve the Accuracy of Power Outage Models?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quiring, S. M.; McRoberts, D. B.; Toy, B.; Alvarado, B.

    2016-12-01

    Electric power utilities make critical decisions in the days prior to hurricane landfall that are primarily based on the estimated impact to their service area. For example, utilities must determine how many repair crews to request from other utilities, the amount of material and equipment they will need to make repairs, and where in their geographically expansive service area to station crews and materials. Accurate forecasts of the impact of an approaching hurricane within their service area are critical for utilities in balancing the costs and benefits of different levels of resources. The Hurricane Outage Prediction Model (HOPM) are a family of statistical models that utilize predictions of tropical cyclone windspeed and duration of strong winds, along with power system and environmental variables (e.g., soil moisture, long-term precipitation), to forecast the number and location of power outages. This project assesses whether using NASA SMAP soil moisture improves the accuracy of power outage forecasts as compared to using model-derived soil moisture from NLDAS-2. A sensitivity analysis is employed since there have been very few tropical cyclones making landfall in the United States since SMAP was launched. The HOPM is used to predict power outages for 13 historical tropical cyclones and the model is run using twice, once with NLDAS soil moisture and once with SMAP soil moisture. Our results demonstrate that using SMAP soil moisture can have a significant impact on power outage predictions. SMAP has the potential to enhance the accuracy of power outage forecasts. Improved outage forecasts reduce the duration of power outages which reduces economic losses and accelerates recovery.

  8. Predictive Modeling by the Cerebellum Improves Proprioception

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhanpuri, Nasir H.; Okamura, Allison M.

    2013-01-01

    Because sensation is delayed, real-time movement control requires not just sensing, but also predicting limb position, a function hypothesized for the cerebellum. Such cerebellar predictions could contribute to perception of limb position (i.e., proprioception), particularly when a person actively moves the limb. Here we show that human cerebellar patients have proprioceptive deficits compared with controls during active movement, but not when the arm is moved passively. Furthermore, when healthy subjects move in a force field with unpredictable dynamics, they have active proprioceptive deficits similar to cerebellar patients. Therefore, muscle activity alone is likely insufficient to enhance proprioception and predictability (i.e., an internal model of the body and environment) is important for active movement to benefit proprioception. We conclude that cerebellar patients have an active proprioceptive deficit consistent with disrupted movement prediction rather than an inability to generally enhance peripheral proprioceptive signals during action and suggest that active proprioceptive deficits should be considered a fundamental cerebellar impairment of clinical importance. PMID:24005283

  9. Significance of uncertainties derived from settling tank model structure and parameters on predicting WWTP performance - A global sensitivity analysis study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ramin, Elham; Sin, Gürkan; Mikkelsen, Peter Steen

    2011-01-01

    Uncertainty derived from one of the process models – such as one-dimensional secondary settling tank (SST) models – can impact the output of the other process models, e.g., biokinetic (ASM1), as well as the integrated wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) models. The model structure and parameter...... uncertainty of settler models can therefore propagate, and add to the uncertainties in prediction of any plant performance criteria. Here we present an assessment of the relative significance of secondary settling model performance in WWTP simulations. We perform a global sensitivity analysis (GSA) based....... The outcome of this study contributes to a better understanding of uncertainty in WWTPs, and explicitly demonstrates the significance of secondary settling processes that are crucial elements of model prediction under dry and wet-weather loading conditions....

  10. Significant Improvement Selected Mediators of Inflammation in Phenotypes of Women with PCOS after Reduction and Low GI Diet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szczuko, Małgorzata; Zapałowska-Chwyć, Marta; Maciejewska, Dominika; Drozd, Arleta; Starczewski, Andrzej; Stachowska, Ewa

    2017-01-01

    Many researchers suggest an increased risk of atherosclerosis in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. In the available literature, there are no studies on the mediators of inflammation in women with PCOS, especially after dietary intervention. Eicosanoids (HETE and HODE) were compared between the biochemical phenotypes of women with PCOS (normal and high androgens) and after the 3-month reduction diet. Eicosanoid profiles (9( S )-HODE, 13( S )-HODE, 5( S )-HETE, 12( S )-HETE, 15( S )-HETE, 5( S )-oxoETE, 16( R )-HETE, 16( S )-HETE and 5( S ), 6( R )-lipoxin A 4 , 5( S ), 6( R ), 15( R )-lipoxin A 4 ) were extracted from 0.5 ml of plasma using solid-phase extraction RP-18 SPE columns. The HPLC separations were performed on a 1260 liquid chromatograph. No significant differences were found in the concentration of analysed eicosanoids in phenotypes of women with PCOS. These women, however, have significantly lower concentration of inflammatory mediators than potentially healthy women from the control group. Dietary intervention leads to a significant ( p PCOS is similar. The pathways for synthesis of proinflammatory mediators in women with PCOS are dormant, but can be stimulated through a reduction diet. Three-month period of lifestyle change may be too short to stimulate the pathways inhibiting inflammatory process.

  11. A Case of Inoperable Malignant Insulinoma with Resistant Hypoglycemia Who Experienced the Most Significant Clinical Improvement with Everolimus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emre Bozkirli

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Metastatic insulinomas may sometimes present with recurrent life-threatening hypoglycemia episodes. Such patients usually fail to respond to various therapeutic agents which causes constant dextrose infusion requirement. Herein, we present a resistant case of inoperable malignant insulinoma who was treated with many therapeutic agents and interventions including somatostatin analogues, Yttrium-90 radioembolization, everolimus, radiotherapy, and chemoembolization. Close blood sugar monitorization during these therapies showed the most favourable response with everolimus. Everolimus treatment resulted in rapid improvement of hypoglycemia episodes, letting us discontinue dextrose infusion and discharge the patient. However, experience with everolimus in such patients is still limited, and more precise data can be obtained with the increasing use of this agent for neuroendocrine tumours.

  12. The patient's safety - For a dynamics of improvement. Nr 3. How to analyze your significant radiation protection events?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2012-07-01

    The objective of this publication is to present event analysis methods which are the most frequently used by radiotherapy departments. After an indication of key figures concerning radiotherapy patients, sessions and events, the document indicates the objectives and steps of an event analysis. It presents various analysis methods: Ishikawa diagram (or 5M method or causes-effects diagram), the cause tree, the ALARM method (association of litigation and risk management), the ORION method. It proposes a comparison between these five methods, their possibilities, their limits. Good practices are outlined in terms of data acquisition, method choice, event analysis, and improvement actions. The use of the cause tree analysis is commented by members of the Limoges hospital radiotherapy department, and that of the Ishikawa method by a member of the Beauvais hospital

  13. An Ecological-Transactional Model of Significant Risk Factors for Child Psychopathology in Outer Mongolia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohrt, Holbrook E.; Kohrt, Brandon A.; Waldman, Irwin; Saltzman, Kasey; Carrion, Victor G.

    2004-01-01

    The present study examined significant risk factors, including child maltreatment, for child psychopathology in a cross-cultural setting. Ninety-nine Mongolian boys, ages 3-10 years, were assessed. Primary caregivers (PCG) completed structured interviews including the Emory Combined Rating Scale (ECRS) and the Mood and Feelings Questionnaire…

  14. Significant Improvement Selected Mediators of Inflammation in Phenotypes of Women with PCOS after Reduction and Low GI Diet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Małgorzata Szczuko

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Many researchers suggest an increased risk of atherosclerosis in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. In the available literature, there are no studies on the mediators of inflammation in women with PCOS, especially after dietary intervention. Eicosanoids (HETE and HODE were compared between the biochemical phenotypes of women with PCOS (normal and high androgens and after the 3-month reduction diet. Eicosanoid profiles (9(S-HODE, 13(S-HODE, 5(S-HETE, 12(S-HETE, 15(S-HETE, 5(S-oxoETE, 16(R-HETE, 16(S-HETE and 5(S, 6(R-lipoxin A4, 5(S, 6(R, 15(R-lipoxin A4 were extracted from 0.5 ml of plasma using solid-phase extraction RP-18 SPE columns. The HPLC separations were performed on a 1260 liquid chromatograph. No significant differences were found in the concentration of analysed eicosanoids in phenotypes of women with PCOS. These women, however, have significantly lower concentration of inflammatory mediators than potentially healthy women from the control group. Dietary intervention leads to a significant (p<0.01 increase in the synthesis of proinflammatory mediators, reaching similar levels as in the control group. The development of inflammatory reaction in both phenotypes of women with PCOS is similar. The pathways for synthesis of proinflammatory mediators in women with PCOS are dormant, but can be stimulated through a reduction diet. Three-month period of lifestyle change may be too short to stimulate the pathways inhibiting inflammatory process.

  15. Improvement of snowpack simulations in a regional climate model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, J.; Miller, N.L.

    2011-01-10

    To improve simulations of regional-scale snow processes and related cold-season hydroclimate, the Community Land Model version 3 (CLM3), developed by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), was coupled with the Pennsylvania State University/NCAR fifth-generation Mesoscale Model (MM5). CLM3 physically describes the mass and heat transfer within the snowpack using five snow layers that include liquid water and solid ice. The coupled MM5–CLM3 model performance was evaluated for the snowmelt season in the Columbia River Basin in the Pacific Northwestern United States using gridded temperature and precipitation observations, along with station observations. The results from MM5–CLM3 show a significant improvement in the SWE simulation, which has been underestimated in the original version of MM5 coupled with the Noah land-surface model. One important cause for the underestimated SWE in Noah is its unrealistic land-surface structure configuration where vegetation, snow and the topsoil layer are blended when snow is present. This study demonstrates the importance of the sheltering effects of the forest canopy on snow surface energy budgets, which is included in CLM3. Such effects are further seen in the simulations of surface air temperature and precipitation in regional weather and climate models such as MM5. In addition, the snow-season surface albedo overestimated by MM5–Noah is now more accurately predicted by MM5–CLM3 using a more realistic albedo algorithm that intensifies the solar radiation absorption on the land surface, reducing the strong near-surface cold bias in MM5–Noah. The cold bias is further alleviated due to a slower snowmelt rate in MM5–CLM3 during the early snowmelt stage, which is closer to observations than the comparable components of MM5–Noah. In addition, the over-predicted precipitation in the Pacific Northwest as shown in MM5–Noah is significantly decreased in MM5 CLM3 due to the lower evaporation resulting from the

  16. Bayesian Data Assimilation for Improved Modeling of Road Traffic

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Hinsbergen, C.P.Y.

    2010-01-01

    This thesis deals with the optimal use of existing models that predict certain phenomena of the road traffic system. Such models are extensively used in Advanced Traffic Information Systems (ATIS), Dynamic Traffic Management (DTM) or Model Predictive Control (MPC) approaches in order to improve the

  17. A study to determine whether targeted education significantly improves the perception of human torture in medical students in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husain, Munawwar; Ghaffar, Usama B; Usmani, Jawed Ahmad; Rivzi, Shameem Jahan

    2010-08-01

    This study was undertaken to find out the knowledge of torture in MBBS students. A fair comparison was done by selecting two groups of medical students; one, to whom torture was not taught ie, pretaught group (PrTG, n = 125), and second, to whom torture was taught in classroom ie, post-taught group (PoTG, n = 110) in more than one sessions. The topic on torture was taught under many headings maximising the effort to cover as much as possible; namely, definition, geographical distribution, types of torture (physical, psychological and sexual), post-torture sequelae, sociopolitical environment prevailing in the country, doctors' involvement in torture, rehabilitation of torture victims and the UNO's role in containment of torture. In all a questionnaire was designed having MCQ types on these aspects. It was found that significant level of difference in perception and knowledge about torture existed amongst the groups, and this was further accentuated in medical and non-medical intratopics. 'P' value of each question was computed separately. It was found that the study was statistically significant and reestablished the need of fortifying the gossameric firmament of education specific to torture.

  18. Icariin combined with human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells significantly improve the impaired kidney function in chronic renal failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wen; Wang, Li; Chu, Xiaoqian; Cui, Huantian; Bian, Yuhong

    2017-04-01

    At present, the main therapy for chronic renal failure (CRF) is dialysis and renal transplantation, but neither obtains satisfactory results. Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (huMSCs) are isolated from the fetal umbilical cord which has a high self-renewal and multi-directional differentiation potential. Icariin (ICA), a kidney-tonifying Chinese Medicine can enhance the multipotency of huMSCs. Therefore, this work seeks to employ the use of ICA-treated huMSCs for the treatment of chronic renal failure. Blood urea nitrogen and creatinine (Cr) analyses showed amelioration of functional parameters in ICA-treated huMSCs for the treatment of CRF rats at 3, 7, and 14 days after transplantation. ICA-treated huMSCs can obviously increase the number of cells in injured renal tissues at 3, 7, and 14 days after transplantation by optical molecular imaging system. Hematoxylin-eosin staining demonstrated that ICA-treated huMSCs reduced the levels of fibrosis in CRF rats at 14 days after transplantation. Superoxide dismutase and Malondialdehyde analyses showed that ICA-treated huMSCs reduced the oxidative damage in CRF rats. Moreover, transplantation with ICA-treated huMSCs decreased inflammatory responses, promoted the expression of growth factors, and protected injured renal tissues. Taken together, our findings suggest that ICA-treated huMSCs could improve the kidney function in CRF rats.

  19. Motivation to Improve Work through Learning: A Conceptual Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kueh Hua Ng

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to enhance our current understanding of the transfer of training by proposing a conceptual model that supports the mediating role of motivation to improve work through learning about the relationship between social support and the transfer of training. The examination of motivation to improve work through motivation to improve work through a learning construct offers a holistic view pertaining to a learner's profile in a workplace setting, which emphasizes learning for the improvement of work performance. The proposed conceptual model is expected to benefit human resource development theory building, as well as field practitioners by emphasizing the motivational aspects crucial for successful transfer of training.

  20. Imparting improvements in electrochemical sensors: evaluation of different carbon blacks that give rise to significant improvement in the performance of electroanalytical sensing platforms

    OpenAIRE

    Vicentini, Fernando Campanhã; Ravanini, Amanda E.; Figueiredo-Filho, Luiz C.S.; Iniesta, Jesus; Banks, Craig E.; Fatibello-Filho, Orlando

    2015-01-01

    Three different carbon black materials have been evaluated as a potential modifier, however, only one demonstrated an improvement in the electrochemical properties. The carbon black structures were characterised with SEM, XPS and Raman spectroscopy and found to be very similar to that of amorphous graphitic materials. The modifications utilised were constructed by three different strategies (using ultrapure water, chitosan and dihexadecylphosphate). The fabricated sensors are electrochemicall...

  1. Research Pearls: The Significance of Statistics and Perils of Pooling. Part 2: Predictive Modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hohmann, Erik; Wetzler, Merrick J; D'Agostino, Ralph B

    2017-07-01

    The focus of predictive modeling or predictive analytics is to use statistical techniques to predict outcomes and/or the results of an intervention or observation for patients that are conditional on a specific set of measurements taken on the patients prior to the outcomes occurring. Statistical methods to estimate these models include using such techniques as Bayesian methods; data mining methods, such as machine learning; and classical statistical models of regression such as logistic (for binary outcomes), linear (for continuous outcomes), and survival (Cox proportional hazards) for time-to-event outcomes. A Bayesian approach incorporates a prior estimate that the outcome of interest is true, which is made prior to data collection, and then this prior probability is updated to reflect the information provided by the data. In principle, data mining uses specific algorithms to identify patterns in data sets and allows a researcher to make predictions about outcomes. Regression models describe the relations between 2 or more variables where the primary difference among methods concerns the form of the outcome variable, whether it is measured as a binary variable (i.e., success/failure), continuous measure (i.e., pain score at 6 months postop), or time to event (i.e., time to surgical revision). The outcome variable is the variable of interest, and the predictor variable(s) are used to predict outcomes. The predictor variable is also referred to as the independent variable and is assumed to be something the researcher can modify in order to see its impact on the outcome (i.e., using one of several possible surgical approaches). Survival analysis investigates the time until an event occurs. This can be an event such as failure of a medical device or death. It allows the inclusion of censored data, meaning that not all patients need to have the event (i.e., die) prior to the study's completion. Copyright © 2017 Arthroscopy Association of North America. Published by

  2. Improvement of Fabry Disease-Related Gastrointestinal Symptoms in a Significant Proportion of Female Patients Treated with Agalsidase Beta

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wilcox, William R; Feldt-Rasmussen, Ulla; Martins, Ana Maria

    2018-01-01

    of organ involvement. Although variable, gastrointestinal symptoms are among the most common and significant early clinical manifestations; they tend to persist into adulthood if left untreated. To further understand the effects of sustained enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) with agalsidase beta......Fabry disease, an X-linked inherited lysosomal storage disorder, is caused by mutations in the gene encoding α-galactosidase, GLA. In patients with Fabry disease, glycosphingolipids accumulate in various cell types, triggering a range of cellular and tissue responses that result in a wide spectrum...... on gastrointestinal symptoms in heterozygotes, a data analysis of female patients enrolled in the Fabry Registry was conducted. To be included, females of any age must have received agalsidase beta (average dose 1.0 mg/kg every 2 weeks) for at least 2.5 years. Measured outcomes were self-reported gastrointestinal...

  3. Concave pit-containing scaffold surfaces improve stem cell-derived osteoblast performance and lead to significant bone tissue formation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Graziano

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Scaffold surface features are thought to be important regulators of stem cell performance and endurance in tissue engineering applications, but details about these fundamental aspects of stem cell biology remain largely unclear.In the present study, smooth clinical-grade lactide-coglyolic acid 85:15 (PLGA scaffolds were carved as membranes and treated with NMP (N-metil-pyrrolidone to create controlled subtractive pits or microcavities. Scanning electron and confocal microscopy revealed that the NMP-treated membranes contained: (i large microcavities of 80-120 microm in diameter and 40-100 microm in depth, which we termed primary; and (ii smaller microcavities of 10-20 microm in diameter and 3-10 microm in depth located within the primary cavities, which we termed secondary. We asked whether a microcavity-rich scaffold had distinct bone-forming capabilities compared to a smooth one. To do so, mesenchymal stem cells derived from human dental pulp were seeded onto the two types of scaffold and monitored over time for cytoarchitectural characteristics, differentiation status and production of important factors, including bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2 and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF. We found that the microcavity-rich scaffold enhanced cell adhesion: the cells created intimate contact with secondary microcavities and were polarized. These cytological responses were not seen with the smooth-surface scaffold. Moreover, cells on the microcavity-rich scaffold released larger amounts of BMP-2 and VEGF into the culture medium and expressed higher alkaline phosphatase activity. When this type of scaffold was transplanted into rats, superior bone formation was elicited compared to cells seeded on the smooth scaffold.In conclusion, surface microcavities appear to support a more vigorous osteogenic response of stem cells and should be used in the design of therapeutic substrates to improve bone repair and bioengineering applications in the

  4. A significant advantage for trapped field magnet applications—A failure of the critical state model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinstein, Roy; Parks, Drew; Sawh, Ravi-Persad; Carpenter, Keith; Davey, Kent

    2015-10-01

    Ongoing research has increased achievable field in trapped field magnets (TFMs) to multi-Tesla levels. This has greatly increased the attractiveness of TFMs for applications. However, it also increases the already very difficult problem of in situ activation and reactivation of the TFMs. The pulsed zero-field-cool (ZFC) method of activation is used in most applications because it can be accomplished with much lower power and more modest equipment than field-cool activation. The critical state model (CSM) has been a reliable theoretical tool for experimental analysis and engineering design of TFMs and their applications for over a half-century. The activating field, BA, required to fully magnetize a TFM to its maximum trappable field, BT,max, using pulsed-ZFC is predicted by CSM to be R ≡ BA/BT,max ≥ 2.0. We report here experiments on R as a function of Jc, which find a monotonic decrease of R to 1.0 as Jc increases. The reduction to R = 1.0 reduces the power needed to magnetize TFMs by about an order of magnitude. This is a critical advantage for TFM applications. The results also indicate the limits of applicability of CSM, and shed light on the physics omitted from the model. The experimental results rule out heating effects and pinning center geometry as causes of the decrease in R. A possible physical cause is proposed.

  5. On the selection of significant variables in a model for the deteriorating process of facades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrat, C.; Gibert, V.; Casas, J. R.; Rapinski, J.

    2017-10-01

    In previous works the authors of this paper have introduced a predictive system that uses survival analysis techniques for the study of time-to-failure in the facades of a building stock. The approach is population based, in order to obtain information on the evolution of the stock across time, and to help the manager in the decision making process on global maintenance strategies. For the decision making it is crutial to determine those covariates -like materials, morphology and characteristics of the facade, orientation or environmental conditions- that play a significative role in the progression of different failures. The proposed platform also incorporates an open source GIS plugin that includes survival and test moduli that allow the investigator to model the time until a lesion taking into account the variables collected during the inspection process. The aim of this paper is double: a) to shortly introduce the predictive system, as well as the inspection and the analysis methodologies and b) to introduce and illustrate the modeling strategy for the deteriorating process of an urban front. The illustration will be focused on the city of L’Hospitalet de Llobregat (Barcelona, Spain) in which more than 14,000 facades have been inspected and analyzed.

  6. Improved Regional Climate Model Simulation of Precipitation by a Dynamical Coupling to a Hydrology Model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Morten Andreas Dahl; Drews, Martin; Hesselbjerg Christensen, Jens

    convective precipitation systems. As a result climate model simulations let alone future projections of precipitation often exhibit substantial biases. Here we show that the dynamical coupling of a regional climate model to a detailed fully distributed hydrological model - including groundwater-, overland...... of local precipitation dynamics are seen for time scales of app. Seasonal duration and longer. We show that these results can be attributed to a more complete treatment of land surface feedbacks. The local scale effect on the atmosphere suggests that coupled high-resolution climate-hydrology models...... including a detailed 3D redistribution of sub- and land surface water have a significant potential for improving climate projections even diminishing the need for bias correction in climate-hydrology studies....

  7. The significance of parks to physical activity and public health: a conceptual model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bedimo-Rung, Ariane L; Mowen, Andrew J; Cohen, Deborah A

    2005-02-01

    Park-based physical activity is a promising means to satisfy current physical activity requirements. However, there is little research concerning what park environmental and policy characteristics might enhance physical activity levels. This study proposes a conceptual model to guide thinking and suggest hypotheses. This framework describes the relationships between park benefits, park use, and physical activity, and the antecedents/correlates of park use. In this classification scheme, the discussion focuses on park environmental characteristics that could be related to physical activity, including park features, condition, access, aesthetics, safety, and policies. Data for these categories should be collected within specific geographic areas in or around the park, including activity areas, supporting areas, the overall park, and the surrounding neighborhood. Future research should focus on how to operationalize specific measures and methodologies for collecting data, as well as measuring associations between individual physical activity levels and specific park characteristics. Collaboration among many disciplines is needed.

  8. Breast cancer-associated metastasis is significantly increased in a model of autoimmune arthritis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das Roy, Lopamudra; Pathangey, Latha B; Tinder, Teresa L; Schettini, Jorge L; Gruber, Helen E; Mukherjee, Pinku

    2009-01-01

    Introduction Sites of chronic inflammation are often associated with the establishment and growth of various malignancies including breast cancer. A common inflammatory condition in humans is autoimmune arthritis (AA) that causes inflammation and deformity of the joints. Other systemic effects associated with arthritis include increased cellular infiltration and inflammation of the lungs. Several studies have reported statistically significant risk ratios between AA and breast cancer. Despite this knowledge, available for a decade, it has never been questioned if the site of chronic inflammation linked to AA creates a milieu that attracts tumor cells to home and grow in the inflamed bones and lungs which are frequent sites of breast cancer metastasis. Methods To determine if chronic inflammation induced by autoimmune arthritis contributes to increased breast cancer-associated metastasis, we generated mammary gland tumors in SKG mice that were genetically prone to develop AA. Two breast cancer cell lines, one highly metastatic (4T1) and the other non-metastatic (TUBO) were used to generate the tumors in the mammary fat pad. Lung and bone metastasis and the associated inflammatory milieu were evaluated in the arthritic versus the non-arthritic mice. Results We report a three-fold increase in lung metastasis and a significant increase in the incidence of bone metastasis in the pro-arthritic and arthritic mice compared to non-arthritic control mice. We also report that the metastatic breast cancer cells augment the severity of arthritis resulting in a vicious cycle that increases both bone destruction and metastasis. Enhanced neutrophilic and granulocytic infiltration in lungs and bone of the pro-arthritic and arthritic mice and subsequent increase in circulating levels of proinflammatory cytokines, such as macrophage colony stimulating factor (M-CSF), interleukin-17 (IL-17), interleukin-6 (IL-6), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and tumor necrosis factor

  9. Breast-cancer-associated metastasis is significantly increased in a model of autoimmune arthritis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das Roy, Lopamudra; Pathangey, Latha B; Tinder, Teresa L; Schettini, Jorge L; Gruber, Helen E; Mukherjee, Pinku

    2009-01-01

    Sites of chronic inflammation are often associated with the establishment and growth of various malignancies including breast cancer. A common inflammatory condition in humans is autoimmune arthritis (AA) that causes inflammation and deformity of the joints. Other systemic effects associated with arthritis include increased cellular infiltration and inflammation of the lungs. Several studies have reported statistically significant risk ratios between AA and breast cancer. Despite this knowledge, available for a decade, it has never been questioned if the site of chronic inflammation linked to AA creates a milieu that attracts tumor cells to home and grow in the inflamed bones and lungs which are frequent sites of breast cancer metastasis. To determine if chronic inflammation induced by autoimmune arthritis contributes to increased breast cancer-associated metastasis, we generated mammary gland tumors in SKG mice that were genetically prone to develop AA. Two breast cancer cell lines, one highly metastatic (4T1) and the other non-metastatic (TUBO) were used to generate the tumors in the mammary fat pad. Lung and bone metastasis and the associated inflammatory milieu were evaluated in the arthritic versus the non-arthritic mice. We report a three-fold increase in lung metastasis and a significant increase in the incidence of bone metastasis in the pro-arthritic and arthritic mice compared to non-arthritic control mice. We also report that the metastatic breast cancer cells augment the severity of arthritis resulting in a vicious cycle that increases both bone destruction and metastasis. Enhanced neutrophilic and granulocytic infiltration in lungs and bone of the pro-arthritic and arthritic mice and subsequent increase in circulating levels of proinflammatory cytokines, such as macrophage colony stimulating factor (M-CSF), interleukin-17 (IL-17), interleukin-6 (IL-6), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) may contribute

  10. Amphoteric Ion-Exchange Membranes with Significantly Improved Vanadium Barrier Properties for All-Vanadium Redox Flow Batteries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nibel, Olga; Rojek, Tomasz; Schmidt, Thomas J; Gubler, Lorenz

    2017-07-10

    All-vanadium redox flow batteries (VRBs) have attracted considerable interest as promising energy-storage devices that can allow the efficient utilization of renewable energy sources. The membrane, which separates the porous electrodes in a redox flow cell, is one of the key components in VRBs. High rates of crossover of vanadium ions and water through the membrane impair the efficiency and capacity of a VRB. Thus, membranes with low permeation rate of vanadium species and water are required, also characterized by low resistance and stability in the VRB environment. Here, we present a new design concept for amphoteric ion-exchange membranes, based on radiation-induced grafting of vinylpyridine into an ethylene tetrafluoroethylene base film and a two-step functionalization to introduce cationic and anionic exchange sites, respectively. During long-term cycling, redox flow cells containing these membranes showed higher efficiency, less pronounced electrolyte imbalance, and significantly reduced capacity decay compared to the cells with the benchmark material Nafion 117. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. A novel glycosylated solution from Dioscorea zingiberensis C.H. Wright significantly improves the solvent productivity of Clostridium beijerinckii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Chuan; Fan, Wei; Du, Shengjie; Liu, Laizhuang; Wang, Changli; Guo, Mengzhen; Zhang, Liwei; Zhang, Meng; Yu, Longjiang

    2017-10-01

    The economics of bio-solvent production are largely dependent on the cost of the fermentation substrate. Dioscorea zingiberensis C.H. Wright (DZW), the main raw material used to produce saponin, contains 13-18% starch which can be directly saccharified to a saccharification liquid of DZW starch (SLDS) that contains abundant nutrients. In this study, the water-soluble micromolecule compounds in SLDS were quantified through 1 H NMR. Using SLDS as the substrate to conduct ABE fermentation by Clostridium beijerinckii, the fermentation cycle was shortened 24h, the maximum biomass and consumption rate of the glucose significantly increased, and the productivity of total solvents were increased by 0.244±0.010g/L/h compared to standard P 2 medium. Expression analysis of genes encoding key enzymes involved in acetone and butanol production and glucose consumption showed that they were induced by SLDS. Taken together, SLDS is a useful and renewable glycosylated solution for ABE fermentation. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  12. Origins of the significant improvement in nanocrystalline Samarium-Cobalt’s magnetic properties when doping with Niobium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Tzu-Yuan [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu, Taiwan 300 (China); Chiou, S.H. [Material and Chemical Research Laboratories and Nanotechnology Research Center, Industrial Technology Research Institute, Hsinchu, Taiwan 310 (China); Chang, H.W. [Department of Physics, Tunghai University, Taichung, Taiwan 407 (China); Lo, S.C. [Material and Chemical Research Laboratories and Nanotechnology Research Center, Industrial Technology Research Institute, Hsinchu, Taiwan 310 (China); Hsieh, C.C.; Chang, W.C. [Department of Physics, National Chung Cheng University, Chia-Yi, Taiwan 621 (China); Lierop, J. van [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2 (Canada); Hsiao, C.-H.; Hsu, Y.W. [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu, Taiwan 300 (China); Ouyang, H., E-mail: houyang@mx.nthu.edu.tw [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu, Taiwan 300 (China)

    2015-02-15

    Highlights: • The coercivity of SmCo{sub 7} ribbon is greatly enhanced by Nb-doping. • Nb resides at the 2e sites and thus stabilizes the SmCo{sub 7} structure and enhances K{sub 1}. • Nb-doping refines the microstructure of SmCo{sub 7} ribbon. • Enhanced coercivity results from increased K{sub 1} and refined microstructure. • This work provides useful information to predict magnetic properties of materials. - Abstract: SmCo{sub 7}-based compounds are prototypical rare-earth based hard magnetic materials that are the backbone of numerous devices and applications. We have found that by doping the SmCo{sub 7} phase with Niobium (e.g. SmCo{sub 6.7}Nb{sub 0.3}), the enhanced coercivity being measured. Using a combination of microstructural and compositional characterization techniques with ab initio calculations, we find that the Nb-doping stabilizes the nanocrystalline nature of the material by residing at the 2e site of the SmCo{sub 7} structure, decreases the average grain size, and substantially increases the magnetocrystalline anisotropy constant (K) (e.g. from 1.25 × 10{sup 7} erg/cm{sup 3} for SmCo{sub 7} to 1.40 × 10{sup 7} erg/cm{sup 3} for SmCo{sub 6.7}Nb{sub 0.3}). A significant enhancement in coercivity with Nb doping is attributed to the increased K and the reduced grain size.

  13. Thermophysical modeling of asteroids from WISE thermal infrared data - Significance of the shape model and the pole orientation uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanuš, J.; Delbo', M.; Ďurech, J.; Alí-Lagoa, V.

    2015-08-01

    In the analysis of thermal infrared data of asteroids by means of thermophysical models (TPMs) it is a common practice to neglect the uncertainty of the shape model and the rotational state, which are taken as an input for the model. Here, we present a novel method of investigating the importance of the shape model and the pole orientation uncertainties in the thermophysical modeling - the varied shape TPM (VS-TPM). Our method uses optical photometric data to generate various shape models that map the uncertainty in the shape and the rotational state. The TPM procedure is then run for all these shape models. We apply the implementation of the classical TPM as well as our VS-TPM to the convex shape models of several asteroids together with their thermal infrared data acquired by the NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) and compare the results. These show that the uncertainties of the shape model and the pole orientation can be very important (e.g., for the determination of the thermal inertia) and should be considered in the thermophysical analyses. We present thermophysical properties for six asteroids - (624) Hektor, (771) Libera, (1036) Ganymed, (1472) Muonio, (1627) Ivar, and (2606) Odessa.

  14. Quality Circles: Determination of Significant Factors for Success an a General Model for Implementing a Quality Circle Process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1981-06-01

    Quality Cir- cles?" First Annual IAQC Transactions, 1979, pp 59-65. 11. Beckhard , Richard . 0rganization Development: Strategies and Models. Reading...improve task accomplishment /57. Beckhard /T17 identifies three models that are commonly used in attempting to deal with a client’s problems. The...Jananese Challerfe. Addison-Wesley Publishing Co., Reading, Massachusetts, 1981. 84. Pascale, Richard T., Anthony G. Athos. The Art of Japaese

  15. Improved Kinetic Models for High-Speed Combustion Simulation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Montgomery, C. J; Tang, Q; Sarofim, A. F; Bockelie, M. J; Gritton, J. K; Bozzelli, J. W; Gouldin, F. C; Fisher, E. M; Chakravarthy, S

    2008-01-01

    Report developed under an STTR contract. The overall goal of this STTR project has been to improve the realism of chemical kinetics in computational fluid dynamics modeling of hydrocarbon-fueled scramjet combustors...

  16. Modafinil improves monocrotaline-induced pulmonary hypertension rat model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyeryon; Kim, Kwan Chang; Cho, Min-Sun; Suh, Suk-Hyo; Hong, Young Mi

    2016-07-01

    Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) progressively leads to increases in pulmonary vasoconstriction. Modafinil plays a role in vasorelaxation and blocking KCa3.1 channel with a result of elevating intracellular cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) levels. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effects on modafinil in monocrotaline (MCT)-induced PAH rat. The rats were separated into three groups: the control group, the monocrotaline (M) group (MCT 60 mg/kg), and the modafinil (MD) group (MCT 60 mg/kg + modafinil). Reduced right ventricular pressure (RVP) was observed in the MD group. Right ventricular hypertrophy was improved in the MD group. Reduced number of intra-acinar pulmonary arteries and medial wall thickness were noted in the MD group. After the administration of modafinil, protein expressions of endothelin-1 (ET-1), endothelin receptor A (ERA) and KCa3.1 channel were significantly reduced. Modafinil suppressed pulmonary artery smooth muscle cell (PASMC) proliferation via cAMP and KCa3.1 channel. Additionally, we confirmed protein expressions such as Bcl-2-associated X, vascular endothelial growth factor, tumor necrosis factor-α, and interleukin-6 were reduced in the MD group. Modafinil improved PAH by vasorelaxation and a decrease in medial thickening via ET-1, ERA, and KCa3.1 down regulation. This is a meaningful study of a modafinil in PAH model.

  17. Myriocin significantly increases the mortality of a non-mammalian model host during Candida pathogenesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadja Rodrigues de Melo

    Full Text Available Candida albicans is a major human pathogen whose treatment is challenging due to antifungal drug toxicity, drug resistance and paucity of antifungal agents available. Myrocin (MYR inhibits sphingosine synthesis, a precursor of sphingolipids, an important cell membrane and signaling molecule component. MYR also has dual immune suppressive and antifungal properties, potentially modulating mammalian immunity and simultaneously reducing fungal infection risk. Wax moth (Galleria mellonella larvae, alternatives to mice, were used to establish if MYR suppressed insect immunity and increased survival of C. albicans-infected insects. MYR effects were studied in vivo and in vitro, and compared alone and combined with those of approved antifungal drugs, fluconazole (FLC and amphotericin B (AMPH. Insect immune defenses failed to inhibit C. albicans with high mortalities. In insects pretreated with the drug followed by C. albicans inoculation, MYR+C. albicans significantly increased mortality to 93% from 67% with C. albicans alone 48 h post-infection whilst AMPH+C. albicans and FLC+C. albicans only showed 26% and 0% mortalities, respectively. MYR combinations with other antifungal drugs in vivo also enhanced larval mortalities, contrasting the synergistic antifungal effect of the MYR+AMPH combination in vitro. MYR treatment influenced immunity and stress management gene expression during C. albicans pathogenesis, modulating transcripts putatively associated with signal transduction/regulation of cytokines, I-kappaB kinase/NF-kappaB cascade, G-protein coupled receptor and inflammation. In contrast, all stress management gene expression was down-regulated in FLC and AMPH pretreated C. albicans-infected insects. Results are discussed with their implications for clinical use of MYR to treat sphingolipid-associated disorders.

  18. Myriocin Significantly Increases the Mortality of a Non-Mammalian Model Host during Candida Pathogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Melo, Nadja Rodrigues; Abdrahman, Ahmed; Greig, Carolyn; Mukherjee, Krishnendu; Thornton, Catherine; Ratcliffe, Norman A.; Vilcinskas, Andreas; Butt, Tariq M.

    2013-01-01

    Candida albicans is a major human pathogen whose treatment is challenging due to antifungal drug toxicity, drug resistance and paucity of antifungal agents available. Myrocin (MYR) inhibits sphingosine synthesis, a precursor of sphingolipids, an important cell membrane and signaling molecule component. MYR also has dual immune suppressive and antifungal properties, potentially modulating mammalian immunity and simultaneously reducing fungal infection risk. Wax moth (Galleria mellonella) larvae, alternatives to mice, were used to establish if MYR suppressed insect immunity and increased survival of C. albicans-infected insects. MYR effects were studied in vivo and in vitro, and compared alone and combined with those of approved antifungal drugs, fluconazole (FLC) and amphotericin B (AMPH). Insect immune defenses failed to inhibit C. albicans with high mortalities. In insects pretreated with the drug followed by C. albicans inoculation, MYR+C. albicans significantly increased mortality to 93% from 67% with C. albicans alone 48 h post-infection whilst AMPH+C. albicans and FLC+C. albicans only showed 26% and 0% mortalities, respectively. MYR combinations with other antifungal drugs in vivo also enhanced larval mortalities, contrasting the synergistic antifungal effect of the MYR+AMPH combination in vitro. MYR treatment influenced immunity and stress management gene expression during C. albicans pathogenesis, modulating transcripts putatively associated with signal transduction/regulation of cytokines, I-kappaB kinase/NF-kappaB cascade, G-protein coupled receptor and inflammation. In contrast, all stress management gene expression was down-regulated in FLC and AMPH pretreated C. albicans -infected insects. Results are discussed with their implications for clinical use of MYR to treat sphingolipid-associated disorders. PMID:24260135

  19. Significance of settling model structures and parameter subsets in modelling WWTPs under wet-weather flow and filamentous bulking conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ramin, Elham; Sin, Gürkan; Mikkelsen, Peter Steen

    2014-01-01

    Current research focuses on predicting and mitigating the impacts of high hydraulic loadings on centralized wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) under wet-weather conditions. The maximum permissible inflow to WWTPs depends not only on the settleability of activated sludge in secondary settling tanks...... (SSTs) but also on the hydraulic behaviour of SSTs. The present study investigates the impacts of ideal and non-ideal flow (dry and wet weather) and settling (good settling and bulking) boundary conditions on the sensitivity of WWTP model outputs to uncertainties intrinsic to the one-dimensional (1-D......) SST model structures and parameters. We identify the critical sources of uncertainty in WWTP models through global sensitivity analysis (GSA) using the Benchmark simulation model No. 1 in combination with first- and second-order 1-D SST models. The results obtained illustrate that the contribution...

  20. Exploring morphological indicators for improved model parameterization in transport modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumahor, Samuel K.; Vogel, Hans-Jörg

    2017-04-01

    Two phenomena that control transport of colloidal materials, including nanoparticles, are interaction at the air-water and solid-water interfaces for unsaturated flow. Current approaches for multiphase inverse modeling to quantify the associated processes utilize empirical parameters and/or assumptions to characterise these interactions. This introduces uncertainty in model outcomes. Two classical examples are: (i) application of the Young-Laplace Equation, assuming spherical air-water interfaces, to quantify interactions at the air-water interface and (ii) the choice of parameters that define the nature and shape of retention profiles for modeling straining at the solid-water interface. In this contribution, an alternate approach using some morphological indicators derived from X-ray micro-computed tomography (µ-CT) to quantify interaction at both the air-water interface and solid-water interface is presented. These indicators, related to air-water and solid-water interface densities, are thought to alleviate the deficiencies associated with modeling interaction at both the solid-water and air-water interfaces.

  1. A multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging-based risk model to determine the risk of significant prostate cancer prior to biopsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leeuwen, Pim J; Hayen, Andrew; Thompson, James E; Moses, Daniel; Shnier, Ron; Böhm, Maret; Abuodha, Magdaline; Haynes, Anne-Maree; Ting, Francis; Barentsz, Jelle; Roobol, Monique; Vass, Justin; Rasiah, Krishan; Delprado, Warick; Stricker, Phillip D

    2017-12-01

    To develop and externally validate a predictive model for detection of significant prostate cancer. Development of the model was based on a prospective cohort including 393 men who underwent multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) before biopsy. External validity of the model was then examined retrospectively in 198 men from a separate institution whom underwent mpMRI followed by biopsy for abnormal prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level or digital rectal examination (DRE). A model was developed with age, PSA level, DRE, prostate volume, previous biopsy, and Prostate Imaging Reporting and Data System (PIRADS) score, as predictors for significant prostate cancer (Gleason 7 with >5% grade 4, ≥20% cores positive or ≥7 mm of cancer in any core). Probability was studied via logistic regression. Discriminatory performance was quantified by concordance statistics and internally validated with bootstrap resampling. In all, 393 men had complete data and 149 (37.9%) had significant prostate cancer. While the variable model had good accuracy in predicting significant prostate cancer, area under the curve (AUC) of 0.80, the advanced model (incorporating mpMRI) had a significantly higher AUC of 0.88 (P prostate cancer. Individualised risk assessment of significant prostate cancer using a predictive model that incorporates mpMRI PIRADS score and clinical data allows a considerable reduction in unnecessary biopsies and reduction of the risk of over-detection of insignificant prostate cancer at the cost of a very small increase in the number of significant cancers missed. © 2017 The Authors BJU International © 2017 BJU International Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. Is it possible to improve prognostic value of NCCN-IPI in patients with diffuse large B cell lymphoma? The prognostic significance of comorbidities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antic, Darko; Jelicic, Jelena; Trajkovic, Goran; Balint, Milena Todorovic; Bila, Jelena; Markovic, Olivera; Petkovic, Ivan; Nikolic, Vesna; Andjelic, Bosko; Djurasinovic, Vladislava; Sretenovic, Aleksandra; Smiljanic, Mihailo; Vukovic, Vojin; Mihaljevic, Biljana

    2018-02-01

    The prognostic value of the International Prognostic Index (IPI) has been re-evaluated in the rituximab-treated diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) patients. Accordingly, National Comprehensive Cancer Network-IPI (NCCN-IPI) has been introduced to estimate prognosis of DLBCL patients. However, comorbidities that frequently affect elderly DLBCL patients were not analyzed. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prognostic significance of comorbidities using Charlson Comorbidity Index (CCI) in 962 DLBCL patients. According to CCI, majority of patients (73.6%) did not have any comorbidity, while high CCI (≥ 2) was observed in 71/962 (7.4%) patients, and in 55/426 (12.9%) of the elderly patients aged ≥ 60 years. When the CCI was analyzed in a multivariate model along with the NCCN-IPI parameters, it stood out as a threefold independent risk factor of a lethal outcome. Also, we have developed a novel comorbidity-NCCN-IPI (cNCCN-IPI) by adding additional 3 points if the patient had a CCI ≥ 2. Four risk groups emerged with the following patient distribution in low, low-intermediate, high-intermediate, and high group: 3.4, 34.3, 49.4, and 12.5%, respectively. The prognostic value of the new cNCCN-IPI was 2.1% improved compared to that of the IPI, and 1.3% improved compared to that of the NCCN-IPI (p IPI showed a 5.1% better discriminative power compared to that of the IPI, and 3.6% better compared to the NCCN-IPI. The NCCN-IPI enhanced by the CCI and combined with redistributed risk groups is better for differentiating risk categories in unselected DLBCL patients, especially in the elderly.

  3. Improvement and Validation of Weld Residual Stress Modelling Procedure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zang, Weilin; Gunnars, Jens; Dong, Pingsha; Hong, Jeong K.

    2009-06-01

    The objective of this work is to identify and evaluate improvements for the residual stress modelling procedure currently used in Sweden. There is a growing demand to eliminate any unnecessary conservatism involved in residual stress assumptions. The study was focused on the development and validation of an improved weld residual stress modelling procedure, by taking advantage of the recent advances in residual stress modelling and stress measurement techniques. The major changes applied in the new weld residual stress modelling procedure are: - Improved procedure for heat source calibration based on use of analytical solutions. - Use of an isotropic hardening model where mixed hardening data is not available. - Use of an annealing model for improved simulation of strain relaxation in re-heated material. The new modelling procedure is demonstrated to capture the main characteristics of the through thickness stress distributions by validation to experimental measurements. Three austenitic stainless steel butt-welds cases are analysed, covering a large range of pipe geometries. From the cases it is evident that there can be large differences between the residual stresses predicted using the new procedure, and the earlier procedure or handbook recommendations. Previously recommended profiles could give misleading fracture assessment results. The stress profiles according to the new procedure agree well with the measured data. If data is available then a mixed hardening model should be used

  4. an improved structural model for seismic analysis of tall frames

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dr Obe

    ABSTRACT. This paper proposed and examined an improved structural model that overcomes the deficiencies of the shear frame model by considering the effects of flexible horizontal members and column axial loads in seismic analysis of multi-storey frames. Matrix displacement method of analysis is used on the basis of ...

  5. A comparison of predictive models for the onset of significant void at low pressures in forced-convection subcooled boiling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, S. C.; Bankoff, S. G.

    1998-01-01

    The predictive models for the Onset of Significant Void (OSV) in forced-convection subcooled boiling are reviewed and compared with extensive data. Three analytical models and seven empirical correlations are considered in this paper. These models and correlations are put onto a common basis and are compared, again on a common basis, with a variety of data. The evaluation of their range of validity and applicability under various operating conditions are discussed. The results show that the correlations of Saha-Zuber (1974) seems to be the best model to predict OSV in vertical subcooled boiling flow

  6. A model of continuous quality improvement for health service organisations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thornber, M

    1992-01-01

    Continuous Quality Improvement (or Total Quality Management) is an approach to management originally used in manufacturing and now being applied in the health services. This article describes a model of Continuous Quality Improvement which has been used in NSW public and private hospitals. The model consists of Ten Key Elements. The first driving force of this model is 'defining quality in terms of customer expectations' of quality. The second driving force emphasises that 'quality improvement is a leadership issue'. Leaders are required to: coordinate staff participation in work process analysis; train staff in the customer service orientation; lead effective meetings and negotiate with both internal and external service partners. Increased staff motivation, quality improvement and reduction in running costs are seen to be the benefits of CQI for health service organisations.

  7. Improvement of a near wake model for trailing vorticity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pirrung, Georg; Hansen, Morten Hartvig; Aagaard Madsen, Helge

    2014-01-01

    A near wake model, originally proposed by Beddoes, is further developed. The purpose of the model is to account for the radially dependent time constants of the fast aerodynamic response and to provide a tip loss correction. It is based on lifting line theory and models the downwash due to roughly...... the first 90 degrees of rotation. This restriction of the model to the near wake allows for using a computationally efficient indicial function algorithm. The aim of this study is to improve the accuracy of the downwash close to the root and tip of the blade and to decrease the sensitivity of the model...... to temporal discretization, both regarding numerical stability and quality of the results. The modified near wake model is coupled to an aerodynamics model, which consists of a blade element momentum model with dynamic inflow for the far wake and a 2D shed vorticity model that simulates the unsteady buildup...

  8. License plate location based on improved visual attention model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Zhenjie; Yi, Weidong

    2012-01-01

    License plate recognition (LPR) system play an important role in intelligent transportation systems (ITSs). It is difficult to locate a license plate in complex scene. Our location strategy integrates blue region, vertical texture and contrast features of LP in the framework of improved visual attention model. We improve visual attention model by changing normalization and linear combination into feature image binarization and logical operation. Multi-scale center-surround differences mechanism in visual attention model make the feature extraction robust. Tests on pictures captured by different equipments under different environments give delightful result, the success rate for location is as high as 95.28%.

  9. Selection of productivity improvement techniques via mathematical modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahassan M. Khater

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a new mathematical model to select an optimal combination of productivity improvement techniques. The proposed model of this paper considers four-stage cycle productivity and the productivity is assumed to be a linear function of fifty four improvement techniques. The proposed model of this paper is implemented for a real-world case study of manufacturing plant. The resulted problem is formulated as a mixed integer programming which can be solved for optimality using traditional methods. The preliminary results of the implementation of the proposed model of this paper indicate that the productivity can be improved through a change on equipments and it can be easily applied for both manufacturing and service industries.

  10. Efficient Adoption and Assessment of Multiple Process Improvement Reference Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simona Jeners

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available A variety of reference models such as CMMI, COBIT or ITIL support IT organizations to improve their processes. These process improvement reference models (IRMs cover different domains such as IT development, IT Services or IT Governance but also share some similarities. As there are organizations that address multiple domains and need to coordinate their processes in their improvement we present MoSaIC, an approach to support organizations to efficiently adopt and conform to multiple IRMs. Our solution realizes a semantic integration of IRMs based on common meta-models. The resulting IRM integration model enables organizations to efficiently implement and asses multiple IRMs and to benefit from synergy effects.

  11. Bayesian Proteoform Modeling Improves Protein Quantification of Global Proteomic Measurements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Webb-Robertson, Bobbie-Jo M.; Matzke, Melissa M.; Datta, Susmita; Payne, Samuel H.; Kang, Jiyun; Bramer, Lisa M.; Nicora, Carrie D.; Shukla, Anil K.; Metz, Thomas O.; Rodland, Karin D.; Smith, Richard D.; Tardiff, Mark F.; McDermott, Jason E.; Pounds, Joel G.; Waters, Katrina M.

    2014-12-01

    As the capability of mass spectrometry-based proteomics has matured, tens of thousands of peptides can be measured simultaneously, which has the benefit of offering a systems view of protein expression. However, a major challenge is that with an increase in throughput, protein quantification estimation from the native measured peptides has become a computational task. A limitation to existing computationally-driven protein quantification methods is that most ignore protein variation, such as alternate splicing of the RNA transcript and post-translational modifications or other possible proteoforms, which will affect a significant fraction of the proteome. The consequence of this assumption is that statistical inference at the protein level, and consequently downstream analyses, such as network and pathway modeling, have only limited power for biomarker discovery. Here, we describe a Bayesian model (BP-Quant) that uses statistically derived peptides signatures to identify peptides that are outside the dominant pattern, or the existence of multiple over-expressed patterns to improve relative protein abundance estimates. It is a research-driven approach that utilizes the objectives of the experiment, defined in the context of a standard statistical hypothesis, to identify a set of peptides exhibiting similar statistical behavior relating to a protein. This approach infers that changes in relative protein abundance can be used as a surrogate for changes in function, without necessarily taking into account the effect of differential post-translational modifications, processing, or splicing in altering protein function. We verify the approach using a dilution study from mouse plasma samples and demonstrate that BP-Quant achieves similar accuracy as the current state-of-the-art methods at proteoform identification with significantly better specificity. BP-Quant is available as a MatLab ® and R packages at https://github.com/PNNL-Comp-Mass-Spec/BP-Quant.

  12. An improved market penetration model for wind energy technology forecasting

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lund, P.D. [Helsinki Univ. of Technology, Espoo (Finland). Advanced Energy Systems

    1995-12-31

    An improved market penetration model with application to wind energy forecasting is presented. In the model, a technology diffusion model and manufacturing learning curve are combined. Based on a 85% progress ratio that was found for European wind manufactures and on wind market statistics, an additional wind power capacity of ca 4 GW is needed in Europe to reach a 30 % price reduction. A full breakthrough to low-cost utility bulk power markets could be achieved at a 24 GW level. (author)

  13. An improved market penetration model for wind energy technology forecasting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lund, P.D.

    1995-01-01

    An improved market penetration model with application to wind energy forecasting is presented. In the model, a technology diffusion model and manufacturing learning curve are combined. Based on a 85% progress ratio that was found for European wind manufactures and on wind market statistics, an additional wind power capacity of ca 4 GW is needed in Europe to reach a 30 % price reduction. A full breakthrough to low-cost utility bulk power markets could be achieved at a 24 GW level. (author)

  14. INTEGRATED COST MODEL FOR IMPROVING THE PRODUCTION IN COMPANIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuzana Hajduova

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: All processes in the company play important role in ensuring functional integrated management system. We point out the importance of need for a systematic approach to the use of quantitative, but especially statistical methods for modelling the cost of the improvement activities that are part of an integrated management system. Development of integrated management systems worldwide leads towards building of systematic procedures of implementation maintenance and improvement of all systems according to the requirements of all the sides involved.Methodology: Statistical evaluation of the economic indicators of improvement costs and the need for a systematic approach to their management in terms of integrated management systems have become a key role also in the management of processes in the company Cu Drôt, a.s. The aim of this publication is to highlight the importance of proper implementation of statistical methods in the process of improvement costs management in the integrated management system of current market conditions and document the legitimacy of a systematic approach in the area of monitoring and analysing indicators of improvement with the aim of the efficient process management of company. We provide specific example of the implementation of appropriate statistical methods in the production of copper wire in a company Cu Drôt, a.s. This publication also aims to create a model for the estimation of integrated improvement costs, which through the use of statistical methods in the company Cu Drôt, a.s. is used to support decision-making on improving efficiency.Findings: In the present publication, a method for modelling the improvement process, by an integrated manner, is proposed. It is a method in which the basic attributes of the improvement in quality, safety and environment are considered and synergistically combined in the same improvement project. The work examines the use of sophisticated quantitative, especially

  15. A Mathematical Model to Improve the Performance of Logistics Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Izman Herdiansyah

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The role of logistics nowadays is expanding from just providing transportation and warehousing to offering total integrated logistics. To remain competitive in the global market environment, business enterprises need to improve their logistics operations performance. The improvement will be achieved when we can provide a comprehensive analysis and optimize its network performances. In this paper, a mixed integer linier model for optimizing logistics network performance is developed. It provides a single-product multi-period multi-facilities model, as well as the multi-product concept. The problem is modeled in form of a network flow problem with the main objective to minimize total logistics cost. The problem can be solved using commercial linear programming package like CPLEX or LINDO. Even in small case, the solver in Excel may also be used to solve such model.Keywords: logistics network, integrated model, mathematical programming, network optimization

  16. Demonstrating the improvement of predictive maturity of a computational model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hemez, Francois M [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Unal, Cetin [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Atamturktur, Huriye S [CLEMSON UNIV.

    2010-01-01

    We demonstrate an improvement of predictive capability brought to a non-linear material model using a combination of test data, sensitivity analysis, uncertainty quantification, and calibration. A model that captures increasingly complicated phenomena, such as plasticity, temperature and strain rate effects, is analyzed. Predictive maturity is defined, here, as the accuracy of the model to predict multiple Hopkinson bar experiments. A statistical discrepancy quantifies the systematic disagreement (bias) between measurements and predictions. Our hypothesis is that improving the predictive capability of a model should translate into better agreement between measurements and predictions. This agreement, in turn, should lead to a smaller discrepancy. We have recently proposed to use discrepancy and coverage, that is, the extent to which the physical experiments used for calibration populate the regime of applicability of the model, as basis to define a Predictive Maturity Index (PMI). It was shown that predictive maturity could be improved when additional physical tests are made available to increase coverage of the regime of applicability. This contribution illustrates how the PMI changes as 'better' physics are implemented in the model. The application is the non-linear Preston-Tonks-Wallace (PTW) strength model applied to Beryllium metal. We demonstrate that our framework tracks the evolution of maturity of the PTW model. Robustness of the PMI with respect to the selection of coefficients needed in its definition is also studied.

  17. A process improvement model for software verification and validation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callahan, John; Sabolish, George

    1994-01-01

    We describe ongoing work at the NASA Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V) Facility to establish a process improvement model for software verification and validation (V&V) organizations. This model, similar to those used by some software development organizations, uses measurement-based techniques to identify problem areas and introduce incremental improvements. We seek to replicate this model for organizations involved in V&V on large-scale software development projects such as EOS and space station. At the IV&V Facility, a university research group and V&V contractors are working together to collect metrics across projects in order to determine the effectiveness of V&V and improve its application. Since V&V processes are intimately tied to development processes, this paper also examines the repercussions for development organizations in large-scale efforts.

  18. Numerical Analysis of Modeling Based on Improved Elman Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shao Jie

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A modeling based on the improved Elman neural network (IENN is proposed to analyze the nonlinear circuits with the memory effect. The hidden layer neurons are activated by a group of Chebyshev orthogonal basis functions instead of sigmoid functions in this model. The error curves of the sum of squared error (SSE varying with the number of hidden neurons and the iteration step are studied to determine the number of the hidden layer neurons. Simulation results of the half-bridge class-D power amplifier (CDPA with two-tone signal and broadband signals as input have shown that the proposed behavioral modeling can reconstruct the system of CDPAs accurately and depict the memory effect of CDPAs well. Compared with Volterra-Laguerre (VL model, Chebyshev neural network (CNN model, and basic Elman neural network (BENN model, the proposed model has better performance.

  19. Numerical analysis of modeling based on improved Elman neural network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jie, Shao; Li, Wang; WeiSong, Zhao; YaQin, Zhong; Malekian, Reza

    2014-01-01

    A modeling based on the improved Elman neural network (IENN) is proposed to analyze the nonlinear circuits with the memory effect. The hidden layer neurons are activated by a group of Chebyshev orthogonal basis functions instead of sigmoid functions in this model. The error curves of the sum of squared error (SSE) varying with the number of hidden neurons and the iteration step are studied to determine the number of the hidden layer neurons. Simulation results of the half-bridge class-D power amplifier (CDPA) with two-tone signal and broadband signals as input have shown that the proposed behavioral modeling can reconstruct the system of CDPAs accurately and depict the memory effect of CDPAs well. Compared with Volterra-Laguerre (VL) model, Chebyshev neural network (CNN) model, and basic Elman neural network (BENN) model, the proposed model has better performance.

  20. Hydrothermal Fe cycling and deep ocean organic carbon scavenging: Model-based evidence for significant POC supply to seafloor sediments

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    German, C.R.; Legendre, L.L.; Sander, S.G.;; Niquil, N.; Luther-III, G.W.; LokaBharathi, P.A.; Han, X.; LeBris, N.

    by more than ~10% over background values, what the model does indicate is that scavenging of carbon in association with Fe-rich hydrothermal plume particles should play a significant role in the delivery of particulate organic carbon to deep ocean...

  1. End-to-end models for marine ecosystems: Are we on the precipice of a significant advance or just putting lipstick on a pig?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenneth A. Rose

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available There has been a rapid rise in the development of end-to-end models for marine ecosystems over the past decade. Some reasons for this rise include need for predicting effects of climate change on biota and dissatisfaction with existing models. While the benefits of a well-implemented end-to-end model are straightforward, there are many challenges. In the short term, my view is that the major role of end-to-end models is to push the modelling community forward, and to identify critical data so that these data can be collected now and thus be available for the next generation of end-to-end models. I think we should emulate physicists and build theoretically-oriented models first, and then collect the data. In the long-term, end-to-end models will increase their skill, data collection will catch up, and end-to-end models will move towards site-specific applications with forecasting and management capabilities. One pathway into the future is individual efforts, over-promise, and repackaging of poorly performing component submodels (“lipstick on a pig”. The other pathway is a community-based collaborative effort, with appropriate caution and thoughtfulness, so that the needed improvements are achieved (“significant advance”. The promise of end-to-end modelling is great. We should act now to avoid missing a great opportunity.

  2. An improved second-order continuum traffic model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marques, W., Jr.; Velasco, R. M.

    2010-02-01

    We construct a second-order continuum traffic model by using an iterative procedure in order to derive a constitutive relation for the traffic pressure which is similar to the Navier-Stokes equation for ordinary fluids. Our second-order traffic model represents an improvement on the traffic model suggested by Kerner and Konhäuser since the iterative procedure introduces, in the constitutive relation for the traffic pressure, a density-dependent viscosity coefficient. By using a finite-difference scheme based on the Steger-Warming flux splitting, we investigate the solution of our improved second-order traffic model for specific problems like shock fronts in traffic and freeway-lane drop.

  3. An improved second-order continuum traffic model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marques, W Jr; Velasco, R M

    2010-01-01

    We construct a second-order continuum traffic model by using an iterative procedure in order to derive a constitutive relation for the traffic pressure which is similar to the Navier–Stokes equation for ordinary fluids. Our second-order traffic model represents an improvement on the traffic model suggested by Kerner and Konhäuser since the iterative procedure introduces, in the constitutive relation for the traffic pressure, a density-dependent viscosity coefficient. By using a finite-difference scheme based on the Steger–Warming flux splitting, we investigate the solution of our improved second-order traffic model for specific problems like shock fronts in traffic and freeway-lane drop

  4. Improved Generalized Force Model considering the Comfortable Driving Behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    De-Jie Xu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents an improved generalized force model (IGFM that considers the driver’s comfortable driving behavior. Through theoretical analysis, we propose the calculation methods of comfortable driving distance and velocity. Then the stability condition of the model is obtained by the linear stability analysis. The problems of the unrealistic acceleration of the leading car existing in the previous models were solved. Furthermore, the simulation results show that IGFM can predict correct delay time of car motion and kinematic wave speed at jam density, and it can exactly describe the driver’s behavior under an urgent case, where no collision occurs. The dynamic properties of IGFM also indicate that stability has improved compared to the generalized force model.

  5. Application and improvement of Raupach's shear stress partitioning model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, B. A.; Lehning, M.; Gromke, C.

    2012-12-01

    Aeolian processes such as the entrainment, transport and redeposition of sand, soil or snow are able to significantly reshape the earth's surface. In times of increasing desertification and land degradation, often driven by wind erosion, investigations of aeolian processes become more and more important in environmental sciences. The reliable prediction of the sheltering effect of vegetation canopies against sediment erosion, for instance, is a clear practical application of such investigations to identify suitable and sustainable counteractive measures against wind erosion. This study presents an application and improvement of a theoretical model presented by Raupach (Boundary-Layer Meteorology, 1992, Vol.60, 375-395 and Journal of Geophysical Research, 1993, Vol.98, 3023-3029) which allows for quantifying the sheltering effect of vegetation against sediment erosion. The model predicts the shear stress ratios τS'/τ and τS''/τ. Here, τS is the part of the total shear stress τ that acts on the ground beneath the plants. The spatial peak τS'' of the surface shear stress is responsible for the onset of particle entrainment whereas the spatial mean τS' can be used to quantify particle mass fluxes. The precise and accurate prediction of these quantities is essential when modeling wind erosion. Measurements of the surface shear stress distributions τS(x,y) on the ground beneath live vegetation canopies (plant species: lolium perenne) were performed in a controlled wind tunnel environment to determine the model parameters and to evaluate the model performance. Rigid, non-porous wooden blocks instead of the plants were additionally tested for the purpose of comparison, since previous wind tunnel studies used exclusively artificial plant imitations for their experiments on shear stress partitioning. The model constant c, which is needed to determine the total stress τ for a canopy of interest and which remained rather unspecified to date, was found to be c ≈ 0

  6. Does segmentation always improve model performance in credit scoring?

    OpenAIRE

    Bijak, Katarzyna; Thomas, Lyn C.

    2012-01-01

    Credit scoring allows for the credit risk assessment of bank customers. A single scoring model (scorecard) can be developed for the entire customer population, e.g. using logistic regression. However, it is often expected that segmentation, i.e. dividing the population into several groups and building separate scorecards for them, will improve the model performance. The most common statistical methods for segmentation are the two-step approaches, where logistic regression follows Classificati...

  7. An Improved QTM Subdivision Model with Approximate Equal-area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ZHAO Xuesheng

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available To overcome the defect of large area deformation in the traditional QTM subdivision model, an improved subdivision model is proposed which based on the “parallel method” and the thought of the equal area subdivision with changed-longitude-latitude. By adjusting the position of the parallel, this model ensures that the grid area between two adjacent parallels combined with no variation, so as to control area variation and variation accumulation of the QTM grid. The experimental results show that this improved model not only remains some advantages of the traditional QTM model(such as the simple calculation and the clear corresponding relationship with longitude/latitude grid, etc, but also has the following advantages: ①this improved model has a better convergence than the traditional one. The ratio of area_max/min finally converges to 1.38, far less than 1.73 of the “parallel method”; ②the grid units in middle and low latitude regions have small area variations and successive distributions; meanwhile, with the increase of subdivision level, the grid units with large variations gradually concentrate to the poles; ③the area variation of grid unit will not cumulate with the increasing of subdivision level.

  8. 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.

  9. Improving the transferability of hydrological model parameters under changing conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yingchun; Bárdossy, András

    2014-05-01

    Hydrological models are widely utilized to describe catchment behaviors with observed hydro-meteorological data. Hydrological process may be considered as non-stationary under the changing climate and land use conditions. An applicable hydrological model should be able to capture the essential features of the target catchment and therefore be transferable to different conditions. At present, many model applications based on the stationary assumptions are not sufficient for predicting further changes or time variability. The aim of this study is to explore new model calibration methods in order to improve the transferability of model parameters. To cope with the instability of model parameters calibrated on catchments in non-stationary conditions, we investigate the idea of simultaneously calibration on streamflow records for the period with dissimilar climate characteristics. In additional, a weather based weighting function is implemented to adjust the calibration period to future trends. For regions with limited data and ungauged basins, the common calibration was applied by using information from similar catchments. Result shows the model performance and transfer quantity could be well improved via common calibration. This model calibration approach will be used to enhance regional water management and flood forecasting capabilities.

  10. Improvement of a near wake model for trailing vorticity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pirrung, G R; Hansen, M H; Madsen, H A

    2014-01-01

    A near wake model, originally proposed by Beddoes, is further developed. The purpose of the model is to account for the radially dependent time constants of the fast aerodynamic response and to provide a tip loss correction. It is based on lifting line theory and models the downwash due to roughly the first 90 degrees of rotation. This restriction of the model to the near wake allows for using a computationally efficient indicial function algorithm. The aim of this study is to improve the accuracy of the downwash close to the root and tip of the blade and to decrease the sensitivity of the model to temporal discretization, both regarding numerical stability and quality of the results. The modified near wake model is coupled to an aerodynamics model, which consists of a blade element momentum model with dynamic inflow for the far wake and a 2D shed vorticity model that simulates the unsteady buildup of both lift and circulation in the attached flow region. The near wake model is validated against the test case of a finite wing with constant elliptical bound circulation. An unsteady simulation of the NREL 5 MW rotor shows the functionality of the coupled model

  11. Guiding and Modelling Quality Improvement in Higher Education Institutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    The article considers the process of creating quality improvement in higher education institutions from the point of view of current organisational theory and social-science modelling techniques. The author considers the higher education institution as a functioning complex of rules, norms and other organisational features and reviews the social…

  12. Promoting Continuous Quality Improvement in Online Teaching: The META Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dittmar, Eileen; McCracken, Holly

    2012-01-01

    Experienced e-learning faculty members share strategies for implementing a comprehensive postsecondary faculty development program essential to continuous improvement of instructional skills. The high-impact META Model (centered around Mentoring, Engagement, Technology, and Assessment) promotes information sharing and content creation, and fosters…

  13. The Continuous Improvement Model: A K-12 Literacy Focus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Jennifer V.

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to determine if the eight steps of the Continuous Improvement Model (CIM) provided a framework to raise achievement and to focus educators in identifying high-yield literacy strategies. This study sought to determine if an examination of the assessment data in reading revealed differences among schools that fully,…

  14. Improving Project Management Using Formal Models and Architectures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahn, Theodore; Sturken, Ian

    2011-01-01

    This talk discusses the advantages formal modeling and architecture brings to project management. These emerging technologies have both great potential and challenges for improving information available for decision-making. The presentation covers standards, tools and cultural issues needing consideration, and includes lessons learned from projects the presenters have worked on.

  15. Improving Perovskite Solar Cells: Insights From a Validated Device Model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sherkar, Tejas S.; Momblona, Cristina; Gil-Escrig, Lidon; Bolink, Henk J.; Koster, L. Jan Anton

    2017-01-01

    To improve the efficiency of existing perovskite solar cells (PSCs), a detailed understanding of the underlying device physics during their operation is essential. Here, a device model has been developed and validated that describes the operation of PSCs and quantitatively explains the role of

  16. Improved mathematical models for particle-size distribution data ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Prior studies have suggested that particle-size distribution data of soils is central and helpful in this regard. This study proposes two improved mathematical models to describe and represent the varied particle-size distribution (PSD) data for tropically weathered residual (TWR) soils. The theoretical analysis and the ...

  17. Five-year results from a prospective multicentre study of percutaneous pulmonary valve implantation demonstrate sustained removal of significant pulmonary regurgitation, improved right ventricular outflow tract obstruction and improved quality of life

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hager, Alfred; Schubert, Stephan; Ewert, Peter

    2017-01-01

    AIMS: Percutaneous pulmonary valve implantation (PPVI) is used to treat patients with dysfunctional pulmonary valve conduits. Short- and longer-term results from multiple trials have outlined haemodynamic improvements. Our aim was to report the long-term results, including quality of life, from....... The EQ-5D quality of life utility index and visual analogue scale scores were both significantly improved six months post PPVI and remained so at five years. CONCLUSIONS: Five-year results following PPVI demonstrate resolved moderate or severe pulmonary regurgitation, improved right ventricular outflow...... tract obstruction, and improved quality of life....

  18. Improved Cell Culture Method for Growing Contracting Skeletal Muscle Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marquette, Michele L.; Sognier, Marguerite A.

    2013-01-01

    An improved method for culturing immature muscle cells (myoblasts) into a mature skeletal muscle overcomes some of the notable limitations of prior culture methods. The development of the method is a major advance in tissue engineering in that, for the first time, a cell-based model spontaneously fuses and differentiates into masses of highly aligned, contracting myotubes. This method enables (1) the construction of improved two-dimensional (monolayer) skeletal muscle test beds; (2) development of contracting three-dimensional tissue models; and (3) improved transplantable tissues for biomedical and regenerative medicine applications. With adaptation, this method also offers potential application for production of other tissue types (i.e., bone and cardiac) from corresponding precursor cells.

  19. Development of Improved Mechanistic Deterioration Models for Flexible Pavements

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ullidtz, Per; Ertman, Hans Larsen

    1998-01-01

    The paper describes a pilot study in Denmark with the main objective of developing improved mechanistic deterioration models for flexible pavements based on an accelerated full scale test on an instrumented pavement in the Danish Road Tessting Machine. The study was the first in "International...... Pavement Subgrade Performance Study" sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), USA. The paper describes in detail the data analysis and the resulting models for rutting, roughness, and a model for the plastic strain in the subgrade.The reader will get an understanding of the work needed...

  20. Applying different quality and safety models in healthcare improvement work: Boundary objects and system thinking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wiig, Siri; Robert, Glenn; Anderson, Janet E.; Pietikainen, Elina; Reiman, Teemu; Macchi, Luigi; Aase, Karina

    2014-01-01

    A number of theoretical models can be applied to help guide quality improvement and patient safety interventions in hospitals. However there are often significant differences between such models and, therefore, their potential contribution when applied in diverse contexts. The aim of this paper is to explore how two such models have been applied by hospitals to improve quality and safety. We describe and compare the models: (1) The Organizing for Quality (OQ) model, and (2) the Design for Integrated Safety Culture (DISC) model. We analyze the theoretical foundations of the models, and show, by using a retrospective comparative case study approach from two European hospitals, how these models have been applied to improve quality and safety. The analysis shows that differences appear in the theoretical foundations, practical approaches and applications of the models. Nevertheless, the case studies indicate that the choice between the OQ and DISC models is of less importance for guiding the practice of quality and safety improvement work, as they are both systemic and share some important characteristics. The main contribution of the models lay in their role as boundary objects directing attention towards organizational and systems thinking, culture, and collaboration

  1. Methods for significance testing of categorical covariates in logistic regression models after multiple imputation: power and applicability analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eekhout, Iris; van de Wiel, Mark A; Heymans, Martijn W

    2017-08-22

    Multiple imputation is a recommended method to handle missing data. For significance testing after multiple imputation, Rubin's Rules (RR) are easily applied to pool parameter estimates. In a logistic regression model, to consider whether a categorical covariate with more than two levels significantly contributes to the model, different methods are available. For example pooling chi-square tests with multiple degrees of freedom, pooling likelihood ratio test statistics, and pooling based on the covariance matrix of the regression model. These methods are more complex than RR and are not available in all mainstream statistical software packages. In addition, they do not always obtain optimal power levels. We argue that the median of the p-values from the overall significance tests from the analyses on the imputed datasets can be used as an alternative pooling rule for categorical variables. The aim of the current study is to compare different methods to test a categorical variable for significance after multiple imputation on applicability and power. In a large simulation study, we demonstrated the control of the type I error and power levels of different pooling methods for categorical variables. This simulation study showed that for non-significant categorical covariates the type I error is controlled and the statistical power of the median pooling rule was at least equal to current multiple parameter tests. An empirical data example showed similar results. It can therefore be concluded that using the median of the p-values from the imputed data analyses is an attractive and easy to use alternative method for significance testing of categorical variables.

  2. An Improved Model of a Pneumatic Vibration Isolator: Theory and Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erin, C.; Wilson, B.; Zapfe, J.

    1998-11-01

    The design of an active controller for a vibration isolation table employing pneumatic vibration isolators requires an accurate mathematical model of the isolator. An experimental investigation of the validity of available models has been performed and indicates significant errors between predicted and observed behavior. An analysis of the model and the data suggested that a previously ignored component of the isolator, the diaphragm, plays a significant role in isolator response. This paper develops the modification to the standard isolator model that incorporates the effects of the diaphragm. When the diaphragm is included in the isolator model, the modified model predicts time-domain and frequency-domain behavior quite closely. We conclude that the modified model of the pneumatic isolator improves markedly the accuracy of the predictions provided by the model.

  3. On improving the communication between models and data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietze, Michael C; Lebauer, David S; Kooper, Rob

    2013-09-01

    The potential for model-data synthesis is growing in importance as we enter an era of 'big data', greater connectivity and faster computation. Realizing this potential requires that the research community broaden its perspective about how and why they interact with models. Models can be viewed as scaffolds that allow data at different scales to inform each other through our understanding of underlying processes. Perceptions of relevance, accessibility and informatics are presented as the primary barriers to broader adoption of models by the community, while an inability to fully utilize the breadth of expertise and data from the community is a primary barrier to model improvement. Overall, we promote a community-based paradigm to model-data synthesis and highlight some of the tools and techniques that facilitate this approach. Scientific workflows address critical informatics issues in transparency, repeatability and automation, while intuitive, flexible web-based interfaces make running and visualizing models more accessible. Bayesian statistics provides powerful tools for assimilating a diversity of data types and for the analysis of uncertainty. Uncertainty analyses enable new measurements to target those processes most limiting our predictive ability. Moving forward, tools for information management and data assimilation need to be improved and made more accessible. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Improvements on Semi-Classical Distorted-Wave model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sun Weili; Watanabe, Y.; Kuwata, R. [Kyushu Univ., Fukuoka (Japan); Kohno, M.; Ogata, K.; Kawai, M.

    1998-03-01

    A method of improving the Semi-Classical Distorted Wave (SCDW) model in terms of the Wigner transform of the one-body density matrix is presented. Finite size effect of atomic nuclei can be taken into account by using the single particle wave functions for harmonic oscillator or Wood-Saxon potential, instead of those based on the local Fermi-gas model which were incorporated into previous SCDW model. We carried out a preliminary SCDW calculation of 160 MeV (p,p`x) reaction on {sup 90}Zr with the Wigner transform of harmonic oscillator wave functions. It is shown that the present calculation of angular distributions increase remarkably at backward angles than the previous ones and the agreement with the experimental data is improved. (author)

  5. Improved dual sided doped memristor: modelling and applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anup Shrivastava

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Memristor as a novel and emerging electronic device having vast range of applications suffer from poor frequency response and saturation length. In this paper, the authors present a novel and an innovative device structure for the memristor with two active layers and its non-linear ionic drift model for an improved frequency response and saturation length. The authors investigated and compared the I–V characteristics for the proposed model with the conventional memristors and found better results in each case (different window functions for the proposed dual sided doped memristor. For circuit level simulation, they developed a SPICE model of the proposed memristor and designed some logic gates based on hybrid complementary metal oxide semiconductor memristive logic (memristor ratioed logic. The proposed memristor yields improved results in terms of noise margin, delay time and dynamic hazards than that of the conventional memristors (single active layer memristors.

  6. An Improved Nonlinear Five-Point Model for Photovoltaic Modules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sakaros Bogning Dongue

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents an improved nonlinear five-point model capable of analytically describing the electrical behaviors of a photovoltaic module for each generic operating condition of temperature and solar irradiance. The models used to replicate the electrical behaviors of operating PV modules are usually based on some simplified assumptions which provide convenient mathematical model which can be used in conventional simulation tools. Unfortunately, these assumptions cause some inaccuracies, and hence unrealistic economic returns are predicted. As an alternative, we used the advantages of a nonlinear analytical five-point model to take into account the nonideal diode effects and nonlinear effects generally ignored, which PV modules operation depends on. To verify the capability of our method to fit PV panel characteristics, the procedure was tested on three different panels. Results were compared with the data issued by manufacturers and with the results obtained using the five-parameter model proposed by other authors.

  7. Co-overexpressing a Plasma Membrane and a Vacuolar Membrane Sodium/Proton Antiporter Significantly Improves Salt Tolerance in Transgenic Arabidopsis Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pehlivan, Necla; Sun, Li; Jarrett, Philip; Yang, Xiaojie; Mishra, Neelam; Chen, Lin; Kadioglu, Asim; Shen, Guoxin; Zhang, Hong

    2016-01-01

    The Arabidopsis gene AtNHX1 encodes a vacuolar membrane-bound sodium/proton (Na+/H+) antiporter that transports Na+ into the vacuole and exports H+ into the cytoplasm. The Arabidopsis gene SOS1 encodes a plasma membrane-bound Na+/H+ antiporter that exports Na+ to the extracellular space and imports H+ into the plant cell. Plants rely on these enzymes either to keep Na+ out of the cell or to sequester Na+ into vacuoles to avoid the toxic level of Na+ in the cytoplasm. Overexpression of AtNHX1 or SOS1 could improve salt tolerance in transgenic plants, but the improved salt tolerance is limited. NaCl at concentration >200 mM would kill AtNHX1-overexpressing or SOS1-overexpressing plants. Here it is shown that co-overexpressing AtNHX1 and SOS1 could further improve salt tolerance in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, making transgenic Arabidopsis able to tolerate up to 250 mM NaCl treatment. Furthermore, co-overexpression of AtNHX1 and SOS1 could significantly reduce yield loss caused by the combined stresses of heat and salt, confirming the hypothesis that stacked overexpression of two genes could substantially improve tolerance against multiple stresses. This research serves as a proof of concept for improving salt tolerance in other plants including crops. PMID:26985021

  8. Co-overexpressing a Plasma Membrane and a Vacuolar Membrane Sodium/Proton Antiporter Significantly Improves Salt Tolerance in Transgenic Arabidopsis Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pehlivan, Necla; Sun, Li; Jarrett, Philip; Yang, Xiaojie; Mishra, Neelam; Chen, Lin; Kadioglu, Asim; Shen, Guoxin; Zhang, Hong

    2016-05-01

    The Arabidopsis gene AtNHX1 encodes a vacuolar membrane-bound sodium/proton (Na(+)/H(+)) antiporter that transports Na(+) into the vacuole and exports H(+) into the cytoplasm. The Arabidopsis gene SOS1 encodes a plasma membrane-bound Na(+)/H(+) antiporter that exports Na(+) to the extracellular space and imports H(+) into the plant cell. Plants rely on these enzymes either to keep Na(+) out of the cell or to sequester Na(+) into vacuoles to avoid the toxic level of Na(+) in the cytoplasm. Overexpression of AtNHX1 or SOS1 could improve salt tolerance in transgenic plants, but the improved salt tolerance is limited. NaCl at concentration >200 mM would kill AtNHX1-overexpressing or SOS1-overexpressing plants. Here it is shown that co-overexpressing AtNHX1 and SOS1 could further improve salt tolerance in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, making transgenic Arabidopsis able to tolerate up to 250 mM NaCl treatment. Furthermore, co-overexpression of AtNHX1 and SOS1 could significantly reduce yield loss caused by the combined stresses of heat and salt, confirming the hypothesis that stacked overexpression of two genes could substantially improve tolerance against multiple stresses. This research serves as a proof of concept for improving salt tolerance in other plants including crops. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists.

  9. Expression and clinical significance of rhubarb on serum amylase and TNF-alpha of rat model of acute pancreatitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, W F; Li, Z T; Fang, J J; Wang, G B; Yu, Y; Liu, Z Q; Wu, Y N; Zheng, S S; Cai, L

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic effect of rhubarb extract on acute pancreatitis. Ninety-six healthy Sprague Dawley rats, weighing 301±5.12 g were randomly divided into 4 groups: sham surgery (group A), acute pancreatitis model (group B), acute pancreatitis with normal saline (group C), and acute pancreatitis model with rhubarb (group D). The levels of serum amylase (AMY) and TNF-α were measured at 1st, 6th, 12th and 24th hour after modeling, and the pancreatic tissue were used to observe the pathologic changes. Compared to the sham group, the serum AMY and serum tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α) levels were significantly increased in the other groups (p acute pancreatitis. The rhubarb reduced the serum AMY and TNF-α level in rats with acute pancreatitis and reduced the pathological changes of pancreas and other tissues.

  10. PD-0332991, a CDK4/6 Inhibitor, Significantly Prolongs Survival in a Genetically Engineered Mouse Model of Brainstem Glioma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barton, Kelly L.; Misuraca, Katherine; Cordero, Francisco; Dobrikova, Elena; Min, Hooney D.; Gromeier, Matthias; Kirsch, David G.; Becher, Oren J.

    2013-01-01

    Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) is an incurable tumor that arises in the brainstem of children. To date there is not a single approved drug to effectively treat these tumors and thus novel therapies are desperately needed. Recent studies suggest that a significant fraction of these tumors contain alterations in cell cycle regulatory genes including amplification of the D-type cyclins and CDK4/6, and less commonly, loss of Ink4a-ARF leading to aberrant cell proliferation. In this study, we evaluated the therapeutic approach of targeting the cyclin-CDK-Retinoblastoma (Rb) pathway in a genetically engineered PDGF-B-driven brainstem glioma (BSG) mouse model. We found that PD-0332991 (PD), a CDK4/6 inhibitor, induces cell-cycle arrest in our PDGF-B; Ink4a-ARF deficient model both in vitro and in vivo. By contrast, the PDGF-B; p53 deficient model was mostly resistant to treatment with PD. We noted that a 7-day treatment course with PD significantly prolonged survival by 12% in the PDGF-B; Ink4a-ARF deficient BSG model. Furthermore, a single dose of 10 Gy radiation therapy (RT) followed by 7 days of treatment with PD increased the survival by 19% in comparison to RT alone. These findings provide the rationale for evaluating PD in children with Ink4a-ARF deficient gliomas. PMID:24098593

  11. PD-0332991, a CDK4/6 inhibitor, significantly prolongs survival in a genetically engineered mouse model of brainstem glioma.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly L Barton

    Full Text Available Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG is an incurable tumor that arises in the brainstem of children. To date there is not a single approved drug to effectively treat these tumors and thus novel therapies are desperately needed. Recent studies suggest that a significant fraction of these tumors contain alterations in cell cycle regulatory genes including amplification of the D-type cyclins and CDK4/6, and less commonly, loss of Ink4a-ARF leading to aberrant cell proliferation. In this study, we evaluated the therapeutic approach of targeting the cyclin-CDK-Retinoblastoma (Rb pathway in a genetically engineered PDGF-B-driven brainstem glioma (BSG mouse model. We found that PD-0332991 (PD, a CDK4/6 inhibitor, induces cell-cycle arrest in our PDGF-B; Ink4a-ARF deficient model both in vitro and in vivo. By contrast, the PDGF-B; p53 deficient model was mostly resistant to treatment with PD. We noted that a 7-day treatment course with PD significantly prolonged survival by 12% in the PDGF-B; Ink4a-ARF deficient BSG model. Furthermore, a single dose of 10 Gy radiation therapy (RT followed by 7 days of treatment with PD increased the survival by 19% in comparison to RT alone. These findings provide the rationale for evaluating PD in children with Ink4a-ARF deficient gliomas.

  12. Significance of hypoxia for tumor response to radiation: Mathematical modeling and analysis of local control and clonogenic assay data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buffa, Francesca Meteora

    2002-01-01

    Various hypotheses for radiation local tumor control probability (ltcp) were modeled, and assessed against local tumor control (LTC) and clonogenic assay (CA) data. For head-and-neck tumors receiving low-LET external-beam irradiation, the best model was a Poisson ltcp accounting for cell repopulation, hypoxia, and tumor volume dependence of radiosensitivity (α). This confirmed that hypoxia is limiting LTC of these tumors, with the magnitude depending upon tumor volume. However, LTC of cervical carcinoma receiving external-beam irradiation and brachytherapy was well described by a model not accounting for hypoxia. Furthermore, when the survival fraction at 2 Gy (SF 2 ) and colony forming efficiency (CFE) measured for individual patients were incorporated into this model, very good correlation with LTC was seen (p=0.0004). After multivariate analysis, this model was the best independent prognostic factor for LTC and patient survival. Furthermore, no difference in prediction was seen when a model based on birth-and-death stochastic theory was used. Two forms of hypoxia are known to be present in tumors: diffusion-limited, chronic hypoxia (CH), and acute, transient hypoxia (TH). A modeling study on WiDr multicellular spheroids showed that the CH effect on LTC is significantly lower than expected from CA. This could arise from energy charge depletion accompanying CH, reducing the number of proliferating clonogenic cells that can repair radiation damage, and thus mitigating the radioresistance of CH cells. This suggests that TH, rather than CH, may be the limiting factor for in vivo LTC. Finally, by computing ltcp using Monte Carlo calculated dose distributions, it was shown that Monte Carlo statistical noise can cause an underestimation of ltcp, with the magnitude depending upon the model hypotheses

  13. An improved steam generator model for the SASSYS code

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pizzica, P.A.

    1989-01-01

    A new steam generator model has been developed for the SASSYS computer code, which analyzes accident conditions in a liquid metal cooled fast reactor. It has been incorporated into the new SASSYS balance-of-plant model but it can also function on a stand-alone basis. The steam generator can be used in a once-through mode, or a variant of the model can be used as a separate evaporator and a superheater with recirculation loop. The new model provides for an exact steady-state solution as well as the transient calculation. There was a need for a faster and more flexible model than the old steam generator model. The new model provides for more detail with its multi-mode treatment as opposed to the previous model's one node per region approach. Numerical instability problems which were the result of cell-centered spatial differencing, fully explicit time differencing, and the moving boundary treatment of the boiling crisis point in the boiling region have been reduced. This leads to an increase in speed as larger time steps can now be taken. The new model is an improvement in many respects. 2 refs., 3 figs

  14. An improved active contour model for glacial lake extraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, H.; Chen, F.; Zhang, M.

    2017-12-01

    Active contour model is a widely used method in visual tracking and image segmentation. Under the driven of objective function, the initial curve defined in active contour model will evolve to a stable condition - a desired result in given image. As a typical region-based active contour model, C-V model has a good effect on weak boundaries detection and anti noise ability which shows great potential in glacial lake extraction. Glacial lake is a sensitive indicator for reflecting global climate change, therefore accurate delineate glacial lake boundaries is essential to evaluate hydrologic environment and living environment. However, the current method in glacial lake extraction mainly contains water index method and recognition classification method are diffcult to directly applied in large scale glacial lake extraction due to the diversity of glacial lakes and masses impacted factors in the image, such as image noise, shadows, snow and ice, etc. Regarding the abovementioned advantanges of C-V model and diffcults in glacial lake extraction, we introduce the signed pressure force function to improve the C-V model for adapting to processing of glacial lake extraction. To inspect the effect of glacial lake extraction results, three typical glacial lake development sites were selected, include Altai mountains, Centre Himalayas, South-eastern Tibet, and Landsat8 OLI imagery was conducted as experiment data source, Google earth imagery as reference data for varifying the results. The experiment consequence suggests that improved active contour model we proposed can effectively discriminate the glacial lakes from complex backgound with a higher Kappa Coefficient - 0.895, especially in some small glacial lakes which belongs to weak information in the image. Our finding provide a new approach to improved accuracy under the condition of large proportion of small glacial lakes and the possibility for automated glacial lake mapping in large-scale area.

  15. Improved Model for Depth Bias Correction in Airborne LiDAR Bathymetry Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianhu Zhao

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Airborne LiDAR bathymetry (ALB is efficient and cost effective in obtaining shallow water topography, but often produces a low-accuracy sounding solution due to the effects of ALB measurements and ocean hydrological parameters. In bathymetry estimates, peak shifting of the green bottom return caused by pulse stretching induces depth bias, which is the largest error source in ALB depth measurements. The traditional depth bias model is often applied to reduce the depth bias, but it is insufficient when used with various ALB system parameters and ocean environments. Therefore, an accurate model that considers all of the influencing factors must be established. In this study, an improved depth bias model is developed through stepwise regression in consideration of the water depth, laser beam scanning angle, sensor height, and suspended sediment concentration. The proposed improved model and a traditional one are used in an experiment. The results show that the systematic deviation of depth bias corrected by the traditional and improved models is reduced significantly. Standard deviations of 0.086 and 0.055 m are obtained with the traditional and improved models, respectively. The accuracy of the ALB-derived depth corrected by the improved model is better than that corrected by the traditional model.

  16. Domain analysis and modeling to improve comparability of health statistics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okada, M; Hashimoto, H; Ohida, T

    2001-01-01

    Health statistics is an essential element to improve the ability of managers of health institutions, healthcare researchers, policy makers, and health professionals to formulate appropriate course of reactions and to make decisions based on evidence. To ensure adequate health statistics, standards are of critical importance. A study on healthcare statistics domain analysis is underway in an effort to improve usability and comparability of health statistics. The ongoing study focuses on structuring the domain knowledge and making the knowledge explicit with a data element dictionary being the core. Supplemental to the dictionary are a domain term list, a terminology dictionary, and a data model to help organize the concepts constituting the health statistics domain.

  17. Recent Improvements to the Calibration Models for RXTE/PCA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jahoda, K.

    2008-01-01

    We are updating the calibration of the PCA to correct for slow variations, primarily in energy to channel relationship. We have also improved the physical model in the vicinity of the Xe K-edge, which should increase the reliability of continuum fits above 20 keV. The improvements to the matrix are especially important to simultaneous observations, where the PCA is often used to constrain the continuum while other higher resolution spectrometers are used to study the shape of lines and edges associated with Iron.

  18. Vitamin D and Calcium Addition during Denosumab Therapy over a Period of Four Years Significantly Improves Lumbar Bone Mineral Density in Japanese Osteoporosis Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takako Suzuki

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated whether or not vitamin D and calcium supplementation affected bone metabolism and bone mineral density (BMD over a period of four years of denosumab therapy in patients with primary osteoporosis. Patients were divided into a denosumab monotherapy group (22 cases or a denosumab plus vitamin D and calcium supplementation group (combination group, 21 cases. We measured serum bone alkaline phosphatase (BAP, tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRACP-5b, urinary N-terminal telopeptide of type-I collagen (NTX, and BMD of the lumbar 1–4 vertebrae (L-BMD and bilateral hips (H-BMD at baseline and at 12, 24, 36, and 48 months of treatment. There were no significant differences in patient background. Serum BAP, TRACP-5b, and urinary NTX were significantly and comparably inhibited in both groups from 12 to 48 months versus baseline values. L-BMD was significantly increased at every time point in both groups, while H-BMD was significantly increased at every time point in the combination group only. There were significant differences between the groups for L-BMD at 24, 36, and 48 months (P < 0.05 and for H-BMD at 12 months (P < 0.05. Compared with denosumab monotherapy, combination therapy of denosumab plus vitamin D and calcium significantly increased H-BMD at 12 months and L-BMD from 24 to 48 months. These findings indicate that continuous vitamin D and calcium supplementation is important, especially for 12 months to improve H-BMD and from 24 to 48 months to improve L-BMD.

  19. Significant improvement of olfactory performance in sleep apnea patients after three months of nasal CPAP therapy - Observational study and randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boerner, Bettina; Tini, Gabrielo M; Fachinger, Patrick; Graber, Sereina M; Irani, Sarosh

    2017-01-01

    The olfactory function highly impacts quality of life (QoL). Continuous positive airway pressure is an effective treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and is often applied by nasal masks (nCPAP). The influence of nCPAP on the olfactory performance of OSA patients is unknown. The aim of this study was to assess the sense of smell before initiation of nCPAP and after three months treatment, in moderate and severe OSA patients. The sense of smell was assessed in 35 patients suffering from daytime sleepiness and moderate to severe OSA (apnea/hypopnea index ≥ 15/h), with the aid of a validated test battery (Sniffin' Sticks) before initiation of nCPAP therapy and after three months of treatment. Additionally, adherent subjects were included in a double-blind randomized three weeks CPAP-withdrawal trial (sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure). Twenty five of the 35 patients used the nCPAP therapy for more than four hours per night, and for more than 70% of nights (adherent group). The olfactory performance of these patients improved significantly (p = 0.007) after three months of nCPAP therapy. When considering the entire group of patients, olfaction also improved significantly (p = 0.001). In the randomized phase the sense of smell of six patients deteriorated under sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure (p = 0.046) whereas five patients in the maintenance CPAP group showed no significant difference (p = 0.501). Olfactory performance improved significantly after three months of nCPAP therapy in patients suffering from moderate and severe OSA. It seems that this effect of nCPAP is reversible under sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure. ISRCTN11128866.

  20. Significant improvement of olfactory performance in sleep apnea patients after three months of nasal CPAP therapy - Observational study and randomized trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bettina Boerner

    Full Text Available The olfactory function highly impacts quality of life (QoL. Continuous positive airway pressure is an effective treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA and is often applied by nasal masks (nCPAP. The influence of nCPAP on the olfactory performance of OSA patients is unknown. The aim of this study was to assess the sense of smell before initiation of nCPAP and after three months treatment, in moderate and severe OSA patients.The sense of smell was assessed in 35 patients suffering from daytime sleepiness and moderate to severe OSA (apnea/hypopnea index ≥ 15/h, with the aid of a validated test battery (Sniffin' Sticks before initiation of nCPAP therapy and after three months of treatment. Additionally, adherent subjects were included in a double-blind randomized three weeks CPAP-withdrawal trial (sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure.Twenty five of the 35 patients used the nCPAP therapy for more than four hours per night, and for more than 70% of nights (adherent group. The olfactory performance of these patients improved significantly (p = 0.007 after three months of nCPAP therapy. When considering the entire group of patients, olfaction also improved significantly (p = 0.001. In the randomized phase the sense of smell of six patients deteriorated under sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure (p = 0.046 whereas five patients in the maintenance CPAP group showed no significant difference (p = 0.501.Olfactory performance improved significantly after three months of nCPAP therapy in patients suffering from moderate and severe OSA. It seems that this effect of nCPAP is reversible under sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure.ISRCTN11128866.

  1. Improvement for Amelioration Inventory Model with Weibull Distribution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Han-Wen Tuan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Most inventory models dealt with deteriorated items. On the contrary, just a few papers considered inventory systems under amelioration environment. We study an amelioration inventory model with Weibull distribution. However, there are some questionable results in the amelioration paper. We will first point out those questionable results in the previous paper that did not derive the optimal solution and then provide some improvements. We will provide a rigorous analytical work for different cases dependent on the size of the shape parameter. We present a detailed numerical example for different ranges of the sharp parameter to illustrate that our solution method attains the optimal solution. We developed a new amelioration model and then provided a detailed analyzed procedure to find the optimal solution. Our findings will help researchers develop their new inventory models.

  2. Improved deadzone modeling for bivariate wavelet shrinkage-based image denoising

    Science.gov (United States)

    DelMarco, Stephen

    2016-05-01

    Modern image processing performed on-board low Size, Weight, and Power (SWaP) platforms, must provide high- performance while simultaneously reducing memory footprint, power consumption, and computational complexity. Image preprocessing, along with downstream image exploitation algorithms such as object detection and recognition, and georegistration, place a heavy burden on power and processing resources. Image preprocessing often includes image denoising to improve data quality for downstream exploitation algorithms. High-performance image denoising is typically performed in the wavelet domain, where noise generally spreads and the wavelet transform compactly captures high information-bearing image characteristics. In this paper, we improve modeling fidelity of a previously-developed, computationally-efficient wavelet-based denoising algorithm. The modeling improvements enhance denoising performance without significantly increasing computational cost, thus making the approach suitable for low-SWAP platforms. Specifically, this paper presents modeling improvements to the Sendur-Selesnick model (SSM) which implements a bivariate wavelet shrinkage denoising algorithm that exploits interscale dependency between wavelet coefficients. We formulate optimization problems for parameters controlling deadzone size which leads to improved denoising performance. Two formulations are provided; one with a simple, closed form solution which we use for numerical result generation, and the second as an integral equation formulation involving elliptic integrals. We generate image denoising performance results over different image sets drawn from public domain imagery, and investigate the effect of wavelet filter tap length on denoising performance. We demonstrate denoising performance improvement when using the enhanced modeling over performance obtained with the baseline SSM model.

  3. IMPROVEMENT OF MATHEMATICAL MODELS FOR ESTIMATION OF TRAIN DYNAMICS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. V. Ursulyak

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. Using scientific publications the paper analyzes the mathematical models developed in Ukraine, CIS countries and abroad for theoretical studies of train dynamics and also shows the urgency of their further improvement. Methodology. Information base of the research was official full-text and abstract databases, scientific works of domestic and foreign scientists, professional periodicals, materials of scientific and practical conferences, methodological materials of ministries and departments. Analysis of publications on existing mathematical models used to solve a wide range of problems associated with the train dynamics study shows the expediency of their application. Findings. The results of these studies were used in: 1 design of new types of draft gears and air distributors; 2 development of methods for controlling the movement of conventional and connected trains; 3 creation of appropriate process flow diagrams; 4 development of energy-saving methods of train driving; 5 revision of the Construction Codes and Regulations (SNiP ΙΙ-39.76; 6 when selecting the parameters of the autonomous automatic control system, created in DNURT, for an auxiliary locomotive that is part of a connected train; 7 when creating computer simulators for the training of locomotive drivers; 8 assessment of the vehicle dynamic indices characterizing traffic safety. Scientists around the world conduct numerical experiments related to estimation of train dynamics using mathematical models that need to be constantly improved. Originality. The authors presented the main theoretical postulates that allowed them to develop the existing mathematical models for solving problems related to the train dynamics. The analysis of scientific articles published in Ukraine, CIS countries and abroad allows us to determine the most relevant areas of application of mathematical models. Practicalvalue. The practical value of the results obtained lies in the scientific validity

  4. An improved thermal model for the computer code NAIAD

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rainbow, M.T.

    1982-12-01

    An improved thermal model, based on the concept of heat slabs, has been incorporated as an option into the thermal hydraulic computer code NAIAD. The heat slabs are one-dimensional thermal conduction models with temperature independent thermal properties which may be internal and/or external to the fluid. Thermal energy may be added to or removed from the fluid via heat slabs and passed across the external boundary of external heat slabs at a rate which is a linear function of the external surface temperatures. The code input for the new option has been restructured to simplify data preparation. A full description of current input requirements is presented

  5. Modelling the Role of Human Resource Management in Continuous Improvement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Frances; Hyland, Paul; Kofoed, Lise B.

    2006-01-01

    Although it is widely acknowledged that both Human Resource Management (HRM) and Continuous Improvement have the potential to positively influencing organizational performance, very little attention has been given to how certain HRM practices may support CI, and consequently, a company's performa......Although it is widely acknowledged that both Human Resource Management (HRM) and Continuous Improvement have the potential to positively influencing organizational performance, very little attention has been given to how certain HRM practices may support CI, and consequently, a company...... of the paper is theoretical in nature, as the model developed provides a greater understanding of how HRM can contribute to CI; however, the model also has practical value in that it suggests important relationships between various HRM practices and the behaviors necessary for successful CI. The paper...

  6. Palaeogenomics in cereals: modeling of ancestors for modern species improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salse, Jérôme; Feuillet, Catherine

    2011-03-01

    During the last decade, technological improvements led to the development of large sets of plant genomic resources permitting the emergence of high-resolution comparative genomic studies. Synteny-based identification of seven shared duplications in cereals led to the modeling of a common ancestral genome structure of 33.6 Mb structured in five protochromosomes containing 9138 protogenes and provided new insights into the evolution of cereal genomes from their extinct ancestors. Recent palaeogenomic data indicate that whole genome duplications were a driving force in the evolutionary success of cereals over the last 50 to 70 millions years. Finally, detailed synteny and duplication relationships led to an improved representation of cereal genomes in concentric circles, thus providing a new reference tool for improved gene annotation and cross-genome markers development. Copyright © 2011 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  7. Empowering Yoruba Women in Nigeria to Prevent HIV/AIDS: The Relative Significance of Behavioural and Social Determinant Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oluwatosin Ige Alo

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available This article uncovers the relevance to practice of behavioural and social determinant models of HIV prevention among Yoruba women in Nigeria. Exploring what factors influence health behaviour in heterosexual relationships, the key question raised was whether the women’s experiences support the assumptions and prescriptions for action of these two dominant public health models. Eight focus group discussions and 39 in-depth interviews were conducted, which involved 121 women and men who were chosen purposefully and through self-nomination technique. This study revealed that the women were very much constrained by social environments in negotiating safe sex, despite having at least a basic knowledge of HIV prevention. Limiting factors included the fear of relationship breakup, economic dependence, violence, and the difficulties in justifying why they feel the need to insist on condom use, especially since initiating condom use is antithetical to trust. Furthermore, evidence suggested that improved access to income and education might be vital but it does not automatically constitute a direct means of empowering women to prevent HIV infection. The limitations of both behavioural and social determinants perspectives thus suggests the need for a combination prevention model, which focuses on how social, behavioural and biomedical factors overlap in shaping health outcomes.

  8. Improving streamflow simulations and forecasting performance of SWAT model by assimilating remotely sensed soil moisture observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patil, Amol; Ramsankaran, RAAJ

    2017-12-01

    This article presents a study carried out using EnKF based assimilation of coarser-scale SMOS soil moisture retrievals to improve the streamflow simulations and forecasting performance of SWAT model in a large catchment. This study has been carried out in Munneru river catchment, India, which is about 10,156 km2. In this study, an EnkF based new approach is proposed for improving the inherent vertical coupling of soil layers of SWAT hydrological model during soil moisture data assimilation. Evaluation of the vertical error correlation obtained between surface and subsurface layers indicates that the vertical coupling can be improved significantly using ensemble of soil storages compared to the traditional static soil storages based EnKF approach. However, the improvements in the simulated streamflow are moderate, which is due to the limitations in SWAT model in reflecting the profile soil moisture updates in surface runoff computations. Further, it is observed that the durability of streamflow improvements is longer when the assimilation system effectively updates the subsurface flow component. Overall, the results of the present study indicate that the passive microwave-based coarser-scale soil moisture products like SMOS hold significant potential to improve the streamflow estimates when assimilating into large-scale distributed hydrological models operating at a daily time step.

  9. Can fire atlas data improve species distribution model projections?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crimmins, Shawn M; Dobrowski, Solomon Z; Mynsberge, Alison R; Safford, Hugh D

    2014-07-01

    Correlative species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used in studies of climate change impacts, yet are often criticized for failing to incorporate disturbance processes that can influence species distributions. Here we use two temporally independent data sets of vascular plant distributions, climate data, and fire atlas data to examine the influence of disturbance history on SDM projection accuracy through time in the mountain ranges of California, USA. We used hierarchical partitioning to examine the influence of fire occurrence on the distribution of 144 vascular plant species and built a suite of SDMs to examine how the inclusion of fire-related predictors (fire occurrence and departure from historical fire return intervals) affects SDM projection accuracy. Fire occurrence provided the least explanatory power among predictor variables for predicting species' distributions, but provided improved explanatory power for species whose regeneration is tied closely to fire. A measure of the departure from historic fire return interval had greater explanatory power for calibrating modern SDMs than fire occurrence. This variable did not improve internal model accuracy for most species, although it did provide marginal improvement to models for species adapted to high-frequency fire regimes. Fire occurrence and fire return interval departure were strongly related to the climatic covariates used in SDM development, suggesting that improvements in model accuracy may not be expected due to limited additional explanatory power. Our results suggest that the inclusion of coarse-scale measures of disturbance in SDMs may not be necessary to predict species distributions under climate change, particularly for disturbance processes that are largely mediated by climate.

  10. Short-Term City Electric Load Forecasting with Considering Temperature Effects: An Improved ARIMAX Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herui Cui

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Short-term electric load is significantly affected by weather, especially the temperature effects in summer. External factors can result in mutation structures in load data. Under the influence of the external temperature factors, city electric load cannot be easily forecasted as usual. This research analyzes the relationship between electricity load and daily temperature in city. An improved ARIMAX model is proposed in this paper to deal with the mutation data structures. It is found that information amount of the improved ARIMAX model is smaller than that of the classic method and its relative error is less than AR, ARMA and Sigmoid-Function ANN models. The forecasting results are more accurately fitted. This improved model is highly valuable when dealing with mutation data structure in the field of load forecasting. And it is also an effective technique in forecasting electric load with temperature effects.

  11. Using the Madeline Hunter Direct Instruction Model to Improve Outcomes Assessments in Marketing Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steward, Michelle D.; Martin, Gregory S.; Burns, Alvin C.; Bush, Ronald F.

    2010-01-01

    This study introduces marketing educators to the Madeline Hunter Direct Instruction Model (HDIM) as an approach to significantly and substantially improve student learning through course-embedded assessment. The effectiveness of the method is illustrated in three different marketing courses taught by three different marketing professors. The…

  12. An automated nowcasting model of significant instability events in the flight terminal area of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges França, Gutemberg; Valdonel de Almeida, Manoel; Rosette, Alessana C.

    2016-05-01

    This paper presents a novel model, based on neural network techniques, to produce short-term and local-specific forecasts of significant instability for flights in the terminal area of Galeão Airport, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Twelve years of data were used for neural network training/validation and test. Data are originally from four sources: (1) hourly meteorological observations from surface meteorological stations at five airports distributed around the study area; (2) atmospheric profiles collected twice a day at the meteorological station at Galeão Airport; (3) rain rate data collected from a network of 29 rain gauges in the study area; and (4) lightning data regularly collected by national detection networks. An investigation was undertaken regarding the capability of a neural network to produce early warning signs - or as a nowcasting tool - for significant instability events in the study area. The automated nowcasting model was tested using results from five categorical statistics, indicated in parentheses in forecasts of the first, second, and third hours, respectively, namely proportion correct (0.99, 0.97, and 0.94), BIAS (1.10, 1.42, and 2.31), the probability of detection (0.79, 0.78, and 0.67), false-alarm ratio (0.28, 0.45, and 0.73), and threat score (0.61, 0.47, and 0.25). Possible sources of error related to the test procedure are presented and discussed. The test showed that the proposed model (or neural network) can grab the physical content inside the data set, and its performance is quite encouraging for the first and second hours to nowcast significant instability events in the study area.

  13. An Improved Dynamic Model for the Respiratory Response to Exercise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leidy Y. Serna

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Respiratory system modeling has been extensively studied in steady-state conditions to simulate sleep disorders, to predict its behavior under ventilatory diseases or stimuli and to simulate its interaction with mechanical ventilation. Nevertheless, the studies focused on the instantaneous response are limited, which restricts its application in clinical practice. The aim of this study is double: firstly, to analyze both dynamic and static responses of two known respiratory models under exercise stimuli by using an incremental exercise stimulus sequence (to analyze the model responses when step inputs are applied and experimental data (to assess prediction capability of each model. Secondly, to propose changes in the models' structures to improve their transient and stationary responses. The versatility of the resulting model vs. the other two is shown according to the ability to simulate ventilatory stimuli, like exercise, with a proper regulation of the arterial blood gases, suitable constant times and a better adjustment to experimental data. The proposed model adjusts the breathing pattern every respiratory cycle using an optimization criterion based on minimization of work of breathing through regulation of respiratory frequency.

  14. Improved dust representation in the Community Atmosphere Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albani, S.; Mahowald, N. M.; Perry, A. T.; Scanza, R. A.; Zender, C. S.; Heavens, N. G.; Maggi, V.; Kok, J. F.; Otto-Bliesner, B. L.

    2014-09-01

    Aerosol-climate interactions constitute one of the major sources of uncertainty in assessing changes in aerosol forcing in the anthropocene as well as understanding glacial-interglacial cycles. Here we focus on improving the representation of mineral dust in the Community Atmosphere Model and assessing the impacts of the improvements in terms of direct effects on the radiative balance of the atmosphere. We simulated the dust cycle using different parameterization sets for dust emission, size distribution, and optical properties. Comparing the results of these simulations with observations of concentration, deposition, and aerosol optical depth allows us to refine the representation of the dust cycle and its climate impacts. We propose a tuning method for dust parameterizations to allow the dust module to work across the wide variety of parameter settings which can be used within the Community Atmosphere Model. Our results include a better representation of the dust cycle, most notably for the improved size distribution. The estimated net top of atmosphere direct dust radiative forcing is -0.23 ± 0.14 W/m2 for present day and -0.32 ± 0.20 W/m2 at the Last Glacial Maximum. From our study and sensitivity tests, we also derive some general relevant findings, supporting the concept that the magnitude of the modeled dust cycle is sensitive to the observational data sets and size distribution chosen to constrain the model as well as the meteorological forcing data, even within the same modeling framework, and that the direct radiative forcing of dust is strongly sensitive to the optical properties and size distribution used.

  15. Hydrogeological modeling for improving groundwater monitoring network and strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thakur, Jay Krishna

    2017-10-01

    The research aimed to investigate a new approach for spatiotemporal groundwater monitoring network optimization using hydrogeological modeling to improve monitoring strategies. Unmonitored concentrations were incorporated at different potential monitoring locations into the groundwater monitoring optimization method. The proposed method was applied in the contaminated megasite, Bitterfeld/Wolfen, Germany. Based on an existing 3-D geological model, 3-D groundwater flow was obtained from flow velocity simulation using initial and boundary conditions. The 3-D groundwater transport model was used to simulate transport of α-HCH with an initial ideal concentration of 100 mg/L injected at various hydrogeological layers in the model. Particle tracking for contaminant and groundwater flow velocity realizations were made. The spatial optimization result suggested that 30 out of 462 wells in the Quaternary aquifer (6.49 %) and 14 out of 357 wells in the Tertiary aquifer (3.92 %) were redundant. With a gradual increase in the width of the particle track path line, from 0 to 100 m, the number of redundant wells remarkably increased, in both aquifers. The results of temporal optimization showed different sampling frequencies for monitoring wells. The groundwater and contaminant flow direction resulting from particle tracks obtained from hydrogeological modeling was verified by the variogram modeling through α-HCH data from 2003 to 2009. Groundwater monitoring strategies can be substantially improved by removing the existing spatio-temporal redundancy as well as incorporating unmonitored network along with sampling at recommended interval of time. However, the use of this model-based method is only recommended in the areas along with site-specific experts' knowledge.

  16. Improvement of a 2D numerical model of lava flows

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishimine, Y.

    2013-12-01

    I propose an improved procedure that reduces an improper dependence of lava flow directions on the orientation of Digital Elevation Model (DEM) in two-dimensional simulations based on Ishihara et al. (in Lava Flows and Domes, Fink, JH eds., 1990). The numerical model for lava flow simulations proposed by Ishihara et al. (1990) is based on two-dimensional shallow water model combined with a constitutive equation for a Bingham fluid. It is simple but useful because it properly reproduces distributions of actual lava flows. Thus, it has been regarded as one of pioneer work of numerical simulations of lava flows and it is still now widely used in practical hazard prediction map for civil defense officials in Japan. However, the model include an improper dependence of lava flow directions on the orientation of DEM because the model separately assigns the condition for the lava flow to stop due to yield stress for each of two orthogonal axes of rectangular calculating grid based on DEM. This procedure brings a diamond-shaped distribution as shown in Fig. 1 when calculating a lava flow supplied from a point source on a virtual flat plane although the distribution should be circle-shaped. To improve the drawback, I proposed a modified procedure that uses the absolute value of yield stress derived from both components of two orthogonal directions of the slope steepness to assign the condition for lava flows to stop. This brings a better result as shown in Fig. 2. Fig. 1. (a) Contour plots calculated with the original model of Ishihara et al. (1990). (b) Contour plots calculated with a proposed model.

  17. A Novel Feed-Forward Modeling System Leads to Sustained Improvements in Attention and Academic Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, Ashley F; Rose, Maya; Norris, Troy; Gordon, Eric

    2016-01-28

    This study tested a novel feed-forward modeling (FFM) system as a nonpharmacological intervention for the treatment of ADHD children and the training of cognitive skills that improve academic performance. This study implemented a randomized, controlled, parallel design comparing this FFM with a nonpharmacological community care intervention. Improvements were measured on parent- and clinician-rated scales of ADHD symptomatology and on academic performance tests completed by the participant. Participants were followed for 3 months after training. Participants in the FFM training group showed significant improvements in ADHD symptomatology and academic performance, while the control group did not. Improvements from FFM were sustained 3 months later. The FFM appeared to be an effective intervention for the treatment of ADHD and improving academic performance. This FFM training intervention shows promise as a first-line treatment for ADHD while improving academic performance. © The Author(s) 2016.

  18. Improvement of Axial Reflector Cross Section Generation Model for PWR Core Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shim, Cheon Bo; Lee, Kyung Hoon; Cho, Jin Young [Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-10-15

    This paper covers the study for improvement of axial reflector XS generation model. In the next section, the improved 1D core model is represented in detail. Reflector XS generated by the improved model is compared to that of the conventional model in the third section. Nuclear design parameters generated by these two XS sets are also covered in that section. Significant of this study is discussed in the last section. Two-step procedure has been regarded as the most practical approach for reactor core designs because it offers core design parameters quite rapidly within acceptable range. Thus this approach is adopted for SMART (System-integrated Modular Advanced Reac- Tor) core design in KAERI with the DeCART2D1.1/ MASTER4.0 (hereafter noted as DeCART2D/ MASTER) code system. Within the framework of the two-step procedure based SMART core design, various researches have been studied to improve the core design reliability and efficiency. One of them is improvement of reflector cross section (XS) generation models. While the conventional FA/reflector two-node model used for most core designs to generate reflector XS cannot consider the actual configuration of fuel rods that intersect at right angles to axial reflectors, the revised model reflects the axial fuel configuration by introducing the radially simplified core model. The significance of the model revision is evaluated by observing HGC generated by DeCART2D, reflector XS, and core design parameters generated by adopting the two models. And it is verified that about 30 ppm CBC error can be reduced and maximum Fq error decreases from about 6 % to 2.5 % by applying the revised model. Error of AO and axial power shapes are also reduced significantly. Therefore it can be concluded that the simplified 1D core model improves the accuracy of the axial reflector XS and leads to the two-step procedure reliability enhancement. Since it is hard for core designs to be free from the two-step approach, it is necessary to find

  19. Improving NASA's Multiscale Modeling Framework for Tropical Cyclone Climate Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Bo-Wen; Nelson, Bron; Cheung, Samson; Tao, Wei-Kuo

    2013-01-01

    One of the current challenges in tropical cyclone (TC) research is how to improve our understanding of TC interannual variability and the impact of climate change on TCs. Recent advances in global modeling, visualization, and supercomputing technologies at NASA show potential for such studies. In this article, the authors discuss recent scalability improvement to the multiscale modeling framework (MMF) that makes it feasible to perform long-term TC-resolving simulations. The MMF consists of the finite-volume general circulation model (fvGCM), supplemented by a copy of the Goddard cumulus ensemble model (GCE) at each of the fvGCM grid points, giving 13,104 GCE copies. The original fvGCM implementation has a 1D data decomposition; the revised MMF implementation retains the 1D decomposition for most of the code, but uses a 2D decomposition for the massive copies of GCEs. Because the vast majority of computation time in the MMF is spent computing the GCEs, this approach can achieve excellent speedup without incurring the cost of modifying the entire code. Intelligent process mapping allows differing numbers of processes to be assigned to each domain for load balancing. The revised parallel implementation shows highly promising scalability, obtaining a nearly 80-fold speedup by increasing the number of cores from 30 to 3,335.

  20. Managing health care decisions and improvement through simulation modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forsberg, Helena Hvitfeldt; Aronsson, Håkan; Keller, Christina; Lindblad, Staffan

    2011-01-01

    Simulation modeling is a way to test changes in a computerized environment to give ideas for improvements before implementation. This article reviews research literature on simulation modeling as support for health care decision making. The aim is to investigate the experience and potential value of such decision support and quality of articles retrieved. A literature search was conducted, and the selection criteria yielded 59 articles derived from diverse applications and methods. Most met the stated research-quality criteria. This review identified how simulation can facilitate decision making and that it may induce learning. Furthermore, simulation offers immediate feedback about proposed changes, allows analysis of scenarios, and promotes communication on building a shared system view and understanding of how a complex system works. However, only 14 of the 59 articles reported on implementation experiences, including how decision making was supported. On the basis of these articles, we proposed steps essential for the success of simulation projects, not just in the computer, but also in clinical reality. We also presented a novel concept combining simulation modeling with the established plan-do-study-act cycle for improvement. Future scientific inquiries concerning implementation, impact, and the value for health care management are needed to realize the full potential of simulation modeling.

  1. The improved sequential puff model for atmospheric dispersion evaluation (SPADE)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Desiato, F.

    1990-05-01

    The present report describes the improved version of the Sequential Puff for Atmospheric Dispersion Evaluation Model (SPADE), developed at EKEA-DISP as a component of ARIES (Atmospheric Release Impact Evaluation System). SPADE has been originally designed for real time assessment of the consequences of a nuclear release into the atmosphere, but it is also suited for sensitivity studies, investigations, or routine applications. It can estimate ground-level air concentrations, deposition and cloud γ dose rate in flat or gently rolling terrain in the vicinity of a point source. During the last years several aspects of the modelling of dispersion processes have been improved, and new modules have been implemented in SPADE. In the first part of the report, a general description of the model is given, and the assumptions and parameterizations used to simulate the main physical processes are described. The second part concerns with the structure of the computer code and of input and output files, and can be regarded as a user's guide to the model. (author)

  2. Improved stoves in India: A study of sustainable business models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shrimali, Gireesh; Slaski, Xander; Thurber, Mark C.; Zerriffi, Hisham

    2011-01-01

    Burning of biomass for cooking is associated with health problems and climate change impacts. Many previous efforts to disseminate improved stoves – primarily by governments and NGOs – have not been successful. Based on interviews with 12 organizations selling improved biomass stoves, we assess the results to date and future prospects of commercial stove operations in India. Specifically, we consider how the ability of these businesses to achieve scale and become self-sustaining has been influenced by six elements of their respective business models: design, customers targeted, financing, marketing, channel strategy, and organizational characteristics. The two companies with the most stoves in the field shared in common generous enterprise financing, a sophisticated approach to developing a sales channel, and many person-years of management experience in marketing and operations. And yet the financial sustainability of improved stove sales to households remains far from assured. The only company in our sample with demonstrated profitability is a family-owned business selling to commercial rather than household customers. The stove sales leader is itself now turning to the commercial segment to maintain flagging cash flow, casting doubt on the likelihood of large positive impacts on health from sales to households in the near term. - Highlights: ► Business models to sell improved stoves can be viable in India. ► Commercial stove efforts may not be able to deliver all the benefits hoped for. ► The government could play a useful role if policies are targeted and well thought-out. ► Develops models for that hard-to-define entity mixing business and charity.

  3. Dialect Topic Modeling for Improved Consumer Medical Search

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crain, Steven P. [Georgia Institute of Technology; Yang, Shuang-Hong [Georgia Institute of Technology; Zha, Hongyuan [Georgia Institute of Technology; Jiao, Yu [ORNL

    2010-01-01

    Access to health information by consumers is ham- pered by a fundamental language gap. Current attempts to close the gap leverage consumer oriented health information, which does not, however, have good coverage of slang medical terminology. In this paper, we present a Bayesian model to automatically align documents with different dialects (slang, com- mon and technical) while extracting their semantic topics. The proposed diaTM model enables effective information retrieval, even when the query contains slang words, by explicitly modeling the mixtures of dialects in documents and the joint influence of dialects and topics on word selection. Simulations us- ing consumer questions to retrieve medical information from a corpus of medical documents show that diaTM achieves a 25% improvement in information retrieval relevance by nDCG@5 over an LDA baseline.

  4. Improving Saliency Models by Predicting Human Fixation Patches

    KAUST Repository

    Dubey, Rachit

    2015-04-16

    There is growing interest in studying the Human Visual System (HVS) to supplement and improve the performance of computer vision tasks. A major challenge for current visual saliency models is predicting saliency in cluttered scenes (i.e. high false positive rate). In this paper, we propose a fixation patch detector that predicts image patches that contain human fixations with high probability. Our proposed model detects sparse fixation patches with an accuracy of 84 % and eliminates non-fixation patches with an accuracy of 84 % demonstrating that low-level image features can indeed be used to short-list and identify human fixation patches. We then show how these detected fixation patches can be used as saliency priors for popular saliency models, thus, reducing false positives while maintaining true positives. Extensive experimental results show that our proposed approach allows state-of-the-art saliency methods to achieve better prediction performance on benchmark datasets.

  5. Life course models: improving interpretation by consideration of total effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Michael J; Popham, Frank

    2017-06-01

    Life course epidemiology has used models of accumulation and critical or sensitive periods to examine the importance of exposure timing in disease aetiology. These models are usually used to describe the direct effects of exposures over the life course. In comparison with consideration of direct effects only, we show how consideration of total effects improves interpretation of these models, giving clearer notions of when it will be most effective to intervene. We show how life course variation in the total effects depends on the magnitude of the direct effects and the stability of the exposure. We discuss interpretation in terms of total, direct and indirect effects and highlight the causal assumptions required for conclusions as to the most effective timing of interventions. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Epidemiological Association.

  6. Improvements and new features in the IRI-2000 model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bilitza, D.

    2002-01-01

    This paper describes the changes that were implemented in the new version of the COSPAR/URSI International Reference Ionosphere (IRI-2000). These changes are: (1) two new options for the electron density in the D-region, (2) a better functional description of the electron density in the E-F merging region, (3) inclusion of the F1 layer occurrence probability as a new parameter, (4) a new model for the bottomside parameters B 0 and B 1 that greatly improves the representation at low and equatorial latitudes during high solar activities, (5) inclusion of a model for foF2 storm-time updating, (6) a new option for the electron temperature in the topside ionosphere, and (7) inclusion of a model for the equatorial F region ion drift. The main purpose of this paper is to provide the IRI users with examples of the effects of these changes. (author)

  7. Evaluating the significance of paleophylogeographic species distribution models in reconstructing quaternary range-shifts of nearctic chelonians.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis Rödder

    Full Text Available The climatic cycles of the Quaternary, during which global mean annual temperatures have regularly changed by 5-10°C, provide a special opportunity for studying the rate, magnitude, and effects of geographic responses to changing climates. During the Quaternary, high- and mid-latitude species were extirpated from regions that were covered by ice or otherwise became unsuitable, persisting in refugial retreats where the environment was compatible with their tolerances. In this study we combine modern geographic range data, phylogeny, Pleistocene paleoclimatic models, and isotopic records of changes in global mean annual temperature, to produce a temporally continuous model of geographic changes in potential habitat for 59 species of North American turtles over the past 320 Ka (three full glacial-interglacial cycles. These paleophylogeographic models indicate the areas where past climates were compatible with the modern ranges of the species and serve as hypotheses for how their geographic ranges would have changed in response to Quaternary climate cycles. We test these hypotheses against physiological, genetic, taxonomic and fossil evidence, and we then use them to measure the effects of Quaternary climate cycles on species distributions. Patterns of range expansion, contraction, and fragmentation in the models are strongly congruent with (i phylogeographic differentiation; (ii morphological variation; (iii physiological tolerances; and (iv intraspecific genetic variability. Modern species with significant interspecific differentiation have geographic ranges that strongly fluctuated and repeatedly fragmented throughout the Quaternary. Modern species with low genetic diversity have geographic distributions that were highly variable and at times exceedingly small in the past. Our results reveal the potential for paleophylogeographic models to (i reconstruct past geographic range modifications, (ii identify geographic processes that result in

  8. Crop Model Improvement Reduces the Uncertainty of the Response to Temperature of Multi-Model Ensembles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maiorano, Andrea; Martre, Pierre; Asseng, Senthold; Ewert, Frank; Mueller, Christoph; Roetter, Reimund P.; Ruane, Alex C.; Semenov, Mikhail A.; Wallach, Daniel; Wang, Enli

    2016-01-01

    To improve climate change impact estimates and to quantify their uncertainty, multi-model ensembles (MMEs) have been suggested. Model improvements can improve the accuracy of simulations and reduce the uncertainty of climate change impact assessments. Furthermore, they can reduce the number of models needed in a MME. Herein, 15 wheat growth models of a larger MME were improved through re-parameterization and/or incorporating or modifying heat stress effects on phenology, leaf growth and senescence, biomass growth, and grain number and size using detailed field experimental data from the USDA Hot Serial Cereal experiment (calibration data set). Simulation results from before and after model improvement were then evaluated with independent field experiments from a CIMMYT worldwide field trial network (evaluation data set). Model improvements decreased the variation (10th to 90th model ensemble percentile range) of grain yields simulated by the MME on average by 39% in the calibration data set and by 26% in the independent evaluation data set for crops grown in mean seasonal temperatures greater than 24 C. MME mean squared error in simulating grain yield decreased by 37%. A reduction in MME uncertainty range by 27% increased MME prediction skills by 47%. Results suggest that the mean level of variation observed in field experiments and used as a benchmark can be reached with half the number of models in the MME. Improving crop models is therefore important to increase the certainty of model-based impact assessments and allow more practical, i.e. smaller MMEs to be used effectively.

  9. Sentinel node positive melanoma patients: prediction and prognostic significance of nonsentinel node metastases and development of a survival tree model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiener, Martin; Acland, Katharine M; Shaw, Helen M; Soong, Seng-Jaw; Lin, Hui-Yi; Chen, Dung-Tsa; Scolyer, Richard A; Winstanley, Julie B; Thompson, John F

    2010-08-01

    Completion lymph node dissection (CLND) following positive sentinel node biopsy (SNB) for melanoma detects additional nonsentinel node (NSN) metastases in approximately 20% of cases. This study aimed to establish whether NSN status can be predicted, to determine its effect on survival, and to develop survival tree models for the sentinel node (SN) positive population. Sydney Melanoma Unit (SMU) patients with at least 1 positive SN, meeting inclusion criteria and treated between October 1992 and June 2005, were identified from the Unit database. Survival characteristics, potential predictors of survival, and NSN status were assessed using the Kaplan-Meier method, Cox regression model, and logistic regression analyses, respectively. Classification tree analysis was performed to identify groups with distinctly different survival characteristics. A total of 323 SN-positive melanoma patients met the inclusion criteria. On multivariate analysis, age, gender, primary tumor thickness, mitotic rate, number of positive NSNs, or total number of positive nodes were statistically significant predictors of survival. NSN metastasis, found at CLND in 19% of patients, was only predicted to a statistically significant degree by ulceration. Multivariate analyses demonstrated that survival was more closely related to number of positive NSNs than total number of positive nodes. Classification tree analysis revealed 4 prognostically distinct survival groups. Patients with NSN metastases could not be reliably identified prior to CLND. Prognosis following CLND was more closely related to number of positive NSNs than total number of positive nodes. Classification tree analysis defined distinctly different survival groups more accurately than use of single-factor analysis.

  10. Improvements To Solar Radiation Pressure Modeling For Jason-2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelensky, N. P.; Lemoine, F. G.; Melachroinos, S.; Pavlis, D.; Bordyugov, O.

    2011-12-01

    Jason-2 is the follow-on to the Jason-1 and TOPEX/Poseidon radar altimetry missions observing the sea surface. The computed orbit is used to reference the altimeter measurement to the center of the Earth, and thus the accuracy and stability of the orbit are critical to the sea surface observation accuracy. A 1-cm Jason-2 radial orbit accuracy goal is required for meeting the 2.5 cm altimeter measurement goal. Also mean sea level change estimated from altimetry requires orbit stability to well below 1 mm/yr. Although 1-cm orbits have been achieved, unresolved large draconitic period error signatures remain and are believed to be due to mis-modeling of the solar radiation pressure (SRP) forces acting on the satellite. Such error may easily affect the altimeter data, and can alias into any number of estimated geodetic quantities using Jason-2. Precision orbit determination (POD) at GSFC and other analysis centers employs an 8-panel "macromodel" representation of the satellite geometry and optical properties to model SRP. Telemetered attitude and modeled solar array pitch angles (SAPA) are used to orient the macromodel. Several possible improvements to SRP modeling are evaluated and include: 1) using telemetered SAPA values, 2) using the SRP model developed at UCL for the very similar Jason-1, 3) re-tuning the macromodel, 4) modifying POD strategy to estimate a coefficient of reflectivity (CR) for every arc, or else using the reduced-dynamic approach. Improvements to POD modeling are evaluated through analysis of tracking data residuals, estimated empirical accelerations, and orbit differences.

  11. Thermal Modeling Method Improvements for SAGE III on ISS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liles, Kaitlin; Amundsen, Ruth; Davis, Warren; McLeod, Shawn

    2015-01-01

    The Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment III (SAGE III) instrument is the fifth in a series of instruments developed for monitoring aerosols and gaseous constituents in the stratosphere and troposphere. SAGE III will be delivered to the International Space Station (ISS) via the SpaceX Dragon vehicle. A detailed thermal model of the SAGE III payload, which consists of multiple subsystems, has been developed in Thermal Desktop (TD). Many innovative analysis methods have been used in developing this model; these will be described in the paper. This paper builds on a paper presented at TFAWS 2013, which described some of the initial developments of efficient methods for SAGE III. The current paper describes additional improvements that have been made since that time. To expedite the correlation of the model to thermal vacuum (TVAC) testing, the chambers and GSE for both TVAC chambers at Langley used to test the payload were incorporated within the thermal model. This allowed the runs of TVAC predictions and correlations to be run within the flight model, thus eliminating the need for separate models for TVAC. In one TVAC test, radiant lamps were used which necessitated shooting rays from the lamps, and running in both solar and IR wavebands. A new Dragon model was incorporated which entailed a change in orientation; that change was made using an assembly, so that any potential additional new Dragon orbits could be added in the future without modification of the model. The Earth orbit parameters such as albedo and Earth infrared flux were incorporated as time-varying values that change over the course of the orbit; despite being required in one of the ISS documents, this had not been done before by any previous payload. All parameters such as initial temperature, heater voltage, and location of the payload are defined based on the case definition. For one component, testing was performed in both air and vacuum; incorporating the air convection in a submodel that was

  12. Improved Pig Model to Evaluate Heart Valve Thrombosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Payanam Ramachandra, Umashankar; Shenoy, Sachin J; Arumugham, Sabareeswaran

    2016-09-01

    Although the sheep is the most acceptable animal model for heart valve evaluation, it has severe limitations for detecting heart valve thrombosis during preclinical studies. While the pig offers an alternative model and is better for detecting prosthetic valve thrombogenicity, it is not often used because of inadvertent valve thrombosis or bleeding complications. The study aim was to develop an improved pig model which can be used reliably to evaluate mechanical heart valve thrombogenicity. Mechanical heart valves were implanted in the mitral position of indigenous pigs administered aspirin-clopidogrel, and compared with similar valves implanted in control pigs to which no antiplatelet therapy had been administered. The pigs were observed for six months to study their overall survivability, inadvertent bleeding/valve thrombosis and pannus formation. The efficacy of aspirinclopidogrel on platelet aggregation and blood coagulation was also recorded and compared between test and control animals. In comparison to controls, pigs receiving anti-platelet therapy showed an overall better survivability, an absence of inadvertent valve thrombosis/ bleeding, and less obstructive pannus formation. Previously unreported inhibitory effects of aspirin-clopidogrel on the intrinsic pathway of blood coagulation were also observed in the pig model. Notably, with aspirin-clopidogrel therapy inadvertent thrombus formation or bleeding can be prevented. The newly developed pig model can be successfully used to evaluate heart valve thrombosis following chronic orthotopic valve implantation. The model may also be utilized to evaluate other bloodcontacting implantable devices.

  13. Collaborative Project: Building improved optimized parameter estimation algorithms to improve methane and nitrogen fluxes in a climate model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mahowald, Natalie [Cornell Univ., Ithaca, NY (United States)

    2016-11-29

    earth science with limited numbers of simulations; and, c) will be (as part of the proposed research) significantly improved both by adding asynchronous parallelism, early truncation of unsuccessful simulations, and the improvement of both serial and parallel performance by the use of derivative and sensitivity information from global and local surrogate approximations S(x). The algorithm development and testing will be focused on the CLM-ME/N model application, but the methods are general and are expected to also perform well on optimization for parameter estimation of other climate models and other classes of continuous multimodal optimization problems arising from complex simulation models. In addition, this proposal will compile available datasets of emissions of methane, nitrous oxides and reactive nitrogen species and develop protocols for site level comparisons with the CLM-ME/N. Once the model parameters are optimized against site level data, the model will be simulated at the global level and compared to atmospheric concentration measurements for the current climate, and future emissions will be estimated using climate change as simulated by the CESM. This proposal combines experts in earth system modeling, optimization, computer science, and process level understanding of soil gas emissions in an interdisciplinary team in order to improve the modeling of methane and nitrogen gas emissions. This proposal thus meets the requirements of the SciDAC RFP, by integrating state-of-the-art computer science and earth system to build an improved earth system model.

  14. Clinical performance improvement series. Classic CQI integrated with comprehensive disease management as a model for performance improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joshi, M S; Bernard, D B

    1999-08-01

    In recent years, health and disease management has emerged as an effective means of delivering, integrating, and improving care through a population-based approach. Since 1997 the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS) has utilized the key principles and components of continuous quality improvement (CQI) and disease management to form a model for health care improvement that focuses on designing best practices, using best practices to influence clinical decision making, changing processes and systems to deploy and deliver best practices, and measuring outcomes to improve the process. Experience with 28 programs and more than 14,000 patients indicates significant improvement in outcomes, including high physician satisfaction, increased patient satisfaction, reduced costs, and improved clinical process and outcome measures across multiple diseases. DIABETES DISEASE MANAGEMENT: In three months a UPHS multidisciplinary diabetes disease management team developed a best practice approach for the treatment of all patients with diabetes in the UPHS. After the program was pilot tested in three primary care physician sites, it was then introduced progressively to additional practice sites throughout the health system. The establishment of the role of the diabetes nurse care managers (certified diabetes educators) was central to successful program deployment. Office-based coordinators ensure incorporation of the best practice protocols into routine flow processes. A disease management intranet disseminates programs electronically. Outcomes of the UPHS health and disease management programs so far demonstrate success across multiple dimensions of performance-service, clinical quality, access, and value. The task of health care leadership today is to remove barriers and enable effective implementation of key strategies, such as health and disease management. Substantial effort and resources must be dedicated to gain physician buy-in and achieve compliance. The

  15. No significant improvement of cardiovascular disease risk indicators by a lifestyle intervention in people with Familial Hypercholesterolemia compared to usual care: results of a randomised controlled trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Broekhuizen Karen

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background People with Familial Hypercholesterolemia (FH may benefit from lifestyle changes supporting their primary treatment of dyslipidaemia. This project evaluated the efficacy of an individualised tailored lifestyle intervention on lipids (low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C, high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C, total cholesterol (TC and triglycerides, systolic blood pressure, glucose, body mass index (BMI and waist circumference in people with FH. Methods Adults with FH (n = 340, recruited from a Dutch cascade screening program, were randomly assigned to either a control group or an intervention group. The personalised intervention consisted of web-based tailored lifestyle advice and personal counselling. The control group received care as usual. Lipids, systolic blood pressure, glucose, BMI, and waist circumference were measured at baseline and after 12 months. Regression analyses were conducted to examine differences between both groups. Results After 12 months, no significant between-group differences of cardiovascular disease (CVD risk indicators were observed. LDL-C levels had decreased in both the intervention and control group. This difference between intervention and control group was not statistically significant. Conclusions This project suggests that an individually tailored lifestyle intervention did not have an additional effect in improving CVD risk indicators among people with FH. The cumulative effect of many small improvements in all indicators on long term CVD risk remains to be assessed in future studies. Trial registration NTR1899 at ww.trialregister.nl

  16. How Significant is the Slope of the Sea-side Boundary for Modelling Seawater Intrusion in Coastal Aquifers?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walther, Marc; Graf, Thomas; Kolditz, Olaf; Lield, Rudolf; Post, Vincent

    2017-04-01

    A large number of people live in coastal areas using the available water resources, which in (semi-)arid regions are often taken from groundwater resources as the only sufficient source. Compared to surface water, these usually provide a safe water supply due to the remediation and retention capabilities of the subsurface, their high yield, and potentially longer term stability. With a water withdrawal from a coastal aquifer, coastal water management, however, has to ensure that seawater intrusion is retained in order to keep the water salinity at an acceptable level for all water users (e.g. agriculture, industry, households). Besides monitoring of water levels and saline intrusion, it has become a common practice to use numerical modeling for evaluating the coastal water resources and projecting future scenarios. When applying a model, it is necessary for the simplifications implied during the conceptualization of the setup to include the relevant processes (here variable-density flow and mass transport) and sensitive parameters (for a steady state commonly hydraulic conductivity, density ratio, dispersivity). Additionally, the model's boundary conditions are essential to the simulation results. In order to reduce the number of elements, and thus, the computational burden, one simplification that is made in most regional scale saltwater intrusion applications, is to represent the sea-side boundary with a vertical geometry, contrary to the natural conditions, that usually show a very shallow decent of the interface between the aquifer and the open seawater. We use the scientific open-source modeling toolbox OpenGeoSys [1] to quantify the influence of this simplification on the saline intrusion, submarine groundwater discharge, and groundwater residence times. Using an ensemble of different shelf shapes for a steady state setup, we identified a significant dependency of saline intrusion length on the geometric parameters of the sea-side boundary. Results show that

  17. Genome-wide significant localization for working and spatial memory: Identifying genes for psychosis using models of cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowles, Emma E M; Carless, Melanie A; de Almeida, Marcio A A; Curran, Joanne E; McKay, D Reese; Sprooten, Emma; Dyer, Thomas D; Göring, Harald H; Olvera, Rene; Fox, Peter; Almasy, Laura; Duggirala, Ravi; Kent, Jack W; Blangero, John; Glahn, David C

    2014-01-01

    It is well established that risk for developing psychosis is largely mediated by the influence of genes, but identifying precisely which genes underlie that risk has been problematic. Focusing on endophenotypes, rather than illness risk, is one solution to this problem. Impaired cognition is a well-established endophenotype of psychosis. Here we aimed to characterize the genetic architecture of cognition using phenotypically detailed models as opposed to relying on general IQ or individual neuropsychological measures. In so doing we hoped to identify genes that mediate cognitive ability, which might also contribute to psychosis risk. Hierarchical factor models of genetically clustered cognitive traits were subjected to linkage analysis followed by QTL region-specific association analyses in a sample of 1,269 Mexican American individuals from extended pedigrees. We identified four genome wide significant QTLs, two for working and two for spatial memory, and a number of plausible and interesting candidate genes. The creation of detailed models of cognition seemingly enhanced the power to detect genetic effects on cognition and provided a number of possible candidate genes for psychosis. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Epinephrine Diluted Saline-Irrigation Fluid in Arthroscopic Shoulder Surgery: A Significant Improvement of Clarity of Visual Field and Shortening of Total Operation Time. A Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Montfoort, Douwe O; van Kampen, Paulien M; Huijsmans, Pol E

    2016-03-01

    To determine the influence of epinephrine saline irrigation in therapeutic shoulder arthroscopy procedures on the clarity of arthroscopic view. Three subgroups were analyzed; (1) Bankart/SLAP repairs; (2) rotator cuff repairs; and (3) subacromial procedures without rotator cuff repair. Secondary objectives were to evaluate the influence on total operating time and potential cardiovascular adverse reactions. The design of the study was a prospective, randomized, double-blind controlled trial. A total of 101 patients were included. Pressure pump-controlled regular saline irrigation fluid was used in the control group. In the epinephrine group, epinephrine (0.33 mg/L) was added to the saline-irrigation fluid. Visual clarity was rated by a Numeric Rating Scale. Total operation time, total use of irrigation fluid, increases in pump pressure, heart rate, blood pressure, and electrocautery use were registered. Visual clarity (P = .002) was significantly better and total operating time (P = .008) significantly shorter in the epinephrine group. Total irrigation fluid used was significantly lower in the epinephrine group (P = .001). The greatest effect on visual clarity and shortening of operation time up to 15 minutes was seen in Bankart and SLAP repairs. No significant effect of the addition of epinephrine on heart rate and blood pressure was observed. The addition of epinephrine (0.33 mg/L) to irrigation fluid significantly improves visual clarity in most common types of therapeutic shoulder arthroscopy. A significant reduction in total operating time and use of irrigation fluid was observed. The greatest effect on visual clarity and shortening of operation time was seen in Bankart and SLAP group. Therefore, one of our initial hypotheses that the greatest effect would be observed in subacromial and rotator cuff repair procedures was not supported by the data presented. No cardiovascular adverse reactions were seen. Level 1, Randomized controlled trial. Copyright

  19. Improving a Deep Learning based RGB-D Object Recognition Model by Ensemble Learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aakerberg, Andreas; Nasrollahi, Kamal; Heder, Thomas

    2018-01-01

    Augmenting RGB images with depth information is a well-known method to significantly improve the recognition accuracy of object recognition models. Another method to im- prove the performance of visual recognition models is ensemble learning. However, this method has not been widely explored...... in combination with deep convolutional neural network based RGB-D object recognition models. Hence, in this paper, we form different ensembles of complementary deep convolutional neural network models, and show that this can be used to increase the recognition performance beyond existing limits. Experiments...... on the Washington RGB-D Object Dataset show that our best performing ensemble improves the recognition performance with 0.7% compared to using the baseline model alone....

  20. Successful Application of a Canadian Mental Health Curriculum Resource by Usual Classroom Teachers in Significantly and Sustainably Improving Student Mental Health Literacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutcher, Stan; Wei, Yifeng; Morgan, Catherine

    2015-12-01

    To investigate whether the significant and substantive findings from a previous study of youth mental health literacy (MHL) could be replicated using the same methods in another population. We examined the impact of a curriculum resource, the Mental Health and High School Curriculum Guide (The Guide), taught by usual classroom teachers on students' knowledge and attitudes related to mental health and mental illness in Canadian secondary schools. Survey data were collected before, immediately after, and 2 months after implementation of The Guide by teachers in usual classroom teaching. We conducted paired-sample t tests and calculated the Cohen d value to determine outcomes and impact of the curriculum resource application. One hundred fourteen students were matched for analysis of knowledge data and 112 students were matched for analysis of attitude data at pre-intervention, post-intervention, and 2-month follow-up time periods. Following classroom exposure to the curriculum resource, students' knowledge scores increased significantly and substantively, compared with baseline (P < 0.001, d = 1.11), and this was maintained at 2-month follow-up (P < 0.001, d = 0.91). Similar findings for attitude improvement were found (P < 0.001, d = 0.66), and this improvement was maintained at 2-month follow-up (P < 0.001, d = 0.52). These findings corroborate those from a previous study conducted in a different location. Taken together these results suggest a simple but effective approach to improving MHL in young people by embedding a classroom resource, delivered by usual classroom teachers in usual school settings.

  1. Improving patient handover between teams using a business improvement model: PDSA cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luther, Vishal; Hammersley, Daniel; Chekairi, Ahmed

    2014-01-01

    Medical admission units are continuously under pressure to move patients off the unit to outlying medical wards and allow for new admissions. In a typical district general hospital, doctors working in these medical wards reported that, on average, three patients each week arrived from the medical admission unit before any handover was received, and a further two patients arrived without any handover at all. A quality improvement project was therefore conducted using a 'Plan, Do, Study, Act' cycle model for improvement to address this issue. P - Plan: as there was no framework to support doctors with handover, a series of standard handover procedures were designed. D - Do: the procedures were disseminated to all staff, and championed by key stakeholders, including the clinical director and matron of the medical admission unit. S - STUDY: Measurements were repeated 3 months later and showed no change in the primary end points. A - ACT: The post take ward round sheet was redesigned, creating a checkbox for a medical admission unit doctor to document that handover had occurred. Nursing staff were prohibited from moving the patient off the ward until this had been completed. This later evolved into a separate handover sheet. Six months later, a repeat study revealed that only one patient each week was arriving before or without a verbal handover. Using a 'Plan, Do, Study, Act' business improvement tool helped to improve patient care.

  2. Triple Diagonal modeling: A mechanism to focus productivity improvement for business success

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Levine, L.O. [Pacific Northwest Lab., Richland, WA (United States); Villareal, L.D. [Army Depot, Corpus Christi, TX (United States)

    1993-09-01

    Triple Diagonal (M) modeling is a technique to help quickly diagnose an organization`s existing production system and to identify significant improvement opportunities in executing, controlling, and planning operations. TD modeling is derived from ICAM Definition Language (IDEF 0)-also known as Structured Analysis and Design Technique. It has been used successfully at several Department of Defense remanufacturing facilities trying to accomplish significant production system modernization. TD has several advantages over other modeling techniques. First, it quickly does ``As-ls`` analysis and then moves on to identify improvements. Second, creating one large diagram makes it easier to share the TD model throughout an organization, rather than the many linked 8 1/2 {times} 11`` drawings used in traditional decomposition approaches. Third, it acts as a communication mechanism to share understanding about improvement opportunities that may cross existing functional/organizational boundaries. Finally, TD acts as a vehicle to build a consensus on a prioritized list of improvement efforts that ``hangs togethers as an agenda for systemic changes in the production system and the improved integration of support functions.

  3. Bevacizumab Improves Achilles Tendon Repair in a Rat Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herbert Tempfer

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Effective wound-healing generally requires efficient re-vascularization after injury, ensuring sufficient supply with oxygen, nutrients, and various cell populations. While this applies to most tissues, tendons are mostly avascular in nature and harbor relatively few cells, probably contributing to their poor regenerative capacity. Considering the minimal vascularization of healthy tendons, we hypothesize that controlling angiogenesis in early tendon healing is beneficial for repair tissue quality and function. Methods: To address this hypothesis, Bevacizumab, a monoclonal antibody blocking VEGF-A signaling, was locally injected into the defect area of a complete tenotomy in rat Achilles tendon. At 28 days post-surgery, the defect region was investigated using immunohistochemistry against vascular and lymphatic epitopes. Polarization microscopy and biomechanical testing was used to determine tendon integrity and gait analysis for functional testing in treated vs non-treated animals. Results: Angiogenesis was found to be significantly reduced in the Bevacizumab treated repair tissue, accompanied by significantly reduced cross sectional area, improved matrix organization, increased stiffness and Young’s modulus, maximum load and stress. Further, we observed an improved gait pattern when compared to the vehicle injected control group. Conclusion: Based on the results of this study we propose that reducing angiogenesis after tendon injury can improve tendon repair, potentially representing a novel treatment-option.

  4. Combining Prostate Health Index density, magnetic resonance imaging and prior negative biopsy status to improve the detection of clinically significant prostate cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Druskin, Sasha C; Tosoian, Jeffrey J; Young, Allen; Collica, Sarah; Srivastava, Arnav; Ghabili, Kamyar; Macura, Katarzyna J; Carter, H Ballentine; Partin, Alan W; Sokoll, Lori J; Ross, Ashley E; Pavlovich, Christian P

    2017-12-12

    To determine the performance of Prostate Health Index (PHI) density (PHID) combined with MRI and prior negative biopsy (PNB) status for the diagnosis of clinically significant prostate cancer (PCa). Patients without a prior diagnosis of PCa, with elevated prostate-specific antigen and a normal digital rectal examination who underwent PHI testing prospectively prior to prostate biopsy were included in this study. PHID was calculated retrospectively using prostate volume derived from transrectal ultrasonography at biopsy. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression modelling, along with receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis, was used to determine the ability of serum biomarkers to predict clinically significant PCa (defined as either grade group [GG] ≥2 disease or GG1 PCa detected in >2 cores or >50% of any one core) on biopsy. Age, PNB status and Prostate Imaging Reporting and Data System (PI-RADS) score were incorporated into the regression models. Of the 241 men who qualified for the study, 91 (37.8%) had clinically significant PCa on biopsy. The median (interquartile range) PHID was 0.74 (0.44-1.24); it was 1.18 (0.77-1.83) and 0.55 (0.38-0.89) in those with and without clinically significant PCa on biopsy, respectively (P PI-RADS score was complementary to PHID, with a PI-RADS score ≥3 or, if PI-RADS score ≤2, a PHID ≥0.44, detecting 100% of clinically significant disease. For that subgroup, of the biomarkers tested, PHID (AUC 0.90) demonstrated the highest discriminative ability for clinically significant disease on multivariable logistic regression incorporating age, PNB status and PI-RADS score. In this contemporary cohort of men undergoing prostate biopsy for the diagnosis of PCa, PHID outperformed PHI and other PSA derivatives in the diagnosis of clinically significant cancer. Incorporating age, PNB status and PI-RADS score led to even further gains in the diagnostic performance of PHID. Furthermore, PI-RADS score was found to

  5. Policy modeling for energy efficiency improvement in US industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Worrell, Ernst; Price, Lynn; Ruth, Michael

    2001-01-01

    We are at the beginning of a process of evaluating and modeling the contribution of policies to improve energy efficiency. Three recent policy studies trying to assess the impact of energy efficiency policies in the United States are reviewed. The studies represent an important step in the analysis of climate change mitigation strategies. All studies model the estimated policy impact, rather than the policy itself. Often the policy impacts are based on assumptions, as the effects of a policy are not certain. Most models only incorporate economic (or price) tools, which recent studies have proven to be insufficient to estimate the impacts, costs and benefits of mitigation strategies. The reviewed studies are a first effort to capture the effects of non-price policies. The studies contribute to a better understanding of the role of policies in improving energy efficiency and mitigating climate change. All policy scenarios results in substantial energy savings compared to the baseline scenario used, as well as substantial net benefits to the U.S. economy

  6. Improved intra-species collision models for PIC simulations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jones, M.E.; Lemons, D.S.; Winske, D.

    1998-01-01

    In recent years, the authors have investigated methods to improve the effectiveness of modeling collisional processes in particle-in-cell codes. Through the use of generalized collision models, plasma dynamics can be followed both in the regime of nearly collisionless plasmas as well as in the hydrodynamic limit of collisional plasmas. They have developed a collision-field method to treat both the case of collisions between unlike plasma species (inter-species collisions), through the use of a deterministic, grid-based force, and between particles of the same species (intra-species collisions), through the use of a Langevin equation. While the approach used for inter-species collisions is noise-free in that the collision experienced by a particle does not require any random numbers, such random numbers are used for intra-species collisions. This gives rise to a stochastic cooling effect inherent in the Langevin approach. In this paper, the authors concentrate on intra-species collisions and describe how the accuracy of the model can be improved by appropriate corrections to velocity and spatial moments

  7. An improved LTE model of a high pressure sulfur discharge

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Johnston, C W; Heijden, H W P van der; Hartgers, A; Garloff, K; Dijk, J van; Mullen, J J A M van der [Department of Applied Physics, Eindhoven University of Technology, PO Box 513, 5600 MB Eindhoven (Netherlands)

    2004-01-21

    An existing LTE model (Johnston C W et al 2002 J. Phys. D: Appl. Phys. 35 342) of a high pressure sulfur discharge is improved upon by more accurate and complete treatment of each term in the energy balance. The simulation program PLASIMO (Janssen G M et al 1999 Plasma Sources Sci. Technol. 8 1, van Dijk J 2001 Modelling of plasma light sources: an object-oriented approach PhD Thesis Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands, ISBN 90-386-1819-0), which is an integrated environment for construction and execution of plasma models, has been used to define and solve all aspects of the model. The electric field is treated as being dc, and the temperature dependent nature of species interactions is incorporated in determination of transport coefficients. In addition to the main radiative transition, B3{sup {sigma}}{sub g}{sup -}, several others in S{sub 2} are included. These are B''3{sup {pi}}{sub u} {yields} X3{sup {sigma}}{sub g}{sup -}, B'3{sup {pi}}{sub g} {yields} {l_brace}A3{sup {sigma}}{sub u}{sup +}, A'3{sup {delta}}{sub u}{r_brace} and e1{sup {pi}}{sub g} {yields} c1{sup {sigma}}{sub u}{sup -}. The S{sub 3} molecule is also included in the composition as an absorbing particle. Furthermore, radiation production is treated quantum mechanically. The principle improvement over the previous work is that both the position of the spectral maximum and the pressure shift are quantitatively described by the current model. Both are chiefly due to the presence of S{sub 3}.

  8. Connecting Biochemical Photosynthesis Models with Crop Models to Support Crop Improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Alex; Song, Youhong; van Oosterom, Erik J.; Hammer, Graeme L.

    2016-01-01

    The next advance in field crop productivity will likely need to come from improving crop use efficiency of resources (e.g., light, water, and nitrogen), aspects of which are closely linked with overall crop photosynthetic efficiency. Progress in genetic manipulation of photosynthesis is confounded by uncertainties of consequences at crop level because of difficulties connecting across scales. Crop growth and development simulation models that integrate across biological levels of organization and use a gene-to-phenotype modeling approach may present a way forward. There has been a long history of development of crop models capable of simulating dynamics of crop physiological attributes. Many crop models incorporate canopy photosynthesis (source) as a key driver for crop growth, while others derive crop growth from the balance between source- and sink-limitations. Modeling leaf photosynthesis has progressed from empirical modeling via light response curves to a more mechanistic basis, having clearer links to the underlying biochemical processes of photosynthesis. Cross-scale modeling that connects models at the biochemical and crop levels and utilizes developments in upscaling leaf-level models to canopy models has the potential to bridge the gap between photosynthetic manipulation at the biochemical level and its consequences on crop productivity. Here we review approaches to this emerging cross-scale modeling framework and reinforce the need for connections across levels of modeling. Further, we propose strategies for connecting biochemical models of photosynthesis into the cross-scale modeling framework to support crop improvement through photosynthetic manipulation. PMID:27790232

  9. An improved finite element model for craniofacial surgery simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shengzheng; Yang, Jie

    2009-11-01

    A novel approach is proposed for simulating the deformation of the facial soft tissues in the craniofacial surgery simulation. A nonlinear finite mixed-element model (NFM-EM) based on solid-shell elements and Lagrange principle of virtual work is proposed, which addresses the heterogeneity in geometry and material properties found in the soft tissues of the face. Moreover, after the investigation of the strain-potential models, the biomechanical characteristics of skin, muscles and fat are modeled with the most suitable material properties. In addition, an improved contact algorithm is used to compute the boundary conditions of the soft tissue model. The quantitative validation and the comparative results with other models proved the effectiveness of the approach on the simulation of complex soft tissues. The average absolute value of errors stays below 0.5 mm and the 95% percentiles of the distance map is less than 1.5 mm. NFM-EM promotes the accuracy and effectiveness of the soft tissue deformation, and the effective contact algorithm bridges the bone-related planning and the prediction of the target face.

  10. Improvement of airfoil trailing edge bluntness noise model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Jun Zhu

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available In this article, airfoil trailing edge bluntness noise is investigated using both computational aero-acoustic and semi-empirical approach. For engineering purposes, one of the most commonly used prediction tools for trailing edge noise are based on semi-empirical approaches, for example, the Brooks, Pope, and Marcolini airfoil noise prediction model developed by Brooks, Pope, and Marcolini (NASA Reference Publication 1218, 1989. It was found in previous study that the Brooks, Pope, and Marcolini model tends to over-predict noise at high frequencies. Furthermore, it was observed that this was caused by a lack in the model to predict accurately noise from blunt trailing edges. For more physical understanding of bluntness noise generation, in this study, we also use an advanced in-house developed high-order computational aero-acoustic technique to investigate the details associated with trailing edge bluntness noise. The results from the numerical model form the basis for an improved Brooks, Pope, and Marcolini trailing edge bluntness noise model.

  11. Cytomegalovirus Antivirals and Development of Improved Animal Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGregor, Alistair; Choi, K. Yeon

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a ubiquitous pathogen that establishes a life long asymptomatic infection in healthy individuals. Infection of immunesuppressed individuals causes serious illness. Transplant and AIDS patients are highly susceptible to CMV leading to life threatening end organ disease. Another vulnerable population is the developing fetus in utero, where congenital infection can result in surviving newborns with long term developmental problems. There is no vaccine licensed for CMV and current antivirals suffer from complications associated with prolonged treatment. These include drug toxicity and emergence of resistant strains. There is an obvious need for new antivirals. Candidate intervention strategies are tested in controlled pre-clinical animal models but species specificity of HCMV precludes the direct study of the virus in an animal model. Areas covered This review explores the current status of CMV antivirals and development of new drugs. This includes the use of animal models and the development of new improved models such as humanized animal CMV and bioluminescent imaging of virus in animals in real time. Expert Opinion Various new CMV antivirals are in development, some with greater spectrum of activity against other viruses. Although the greatest need is in the setting of transplant patients there remains an unmet need for a safe antiviral strategy against congenital CMV. This is especially important since an effective CMV vaccine remains an elusive goal. In this capacity greater emphasis should be placed on suitable pre-clinical animal models and greater collaboration between industry and academia. PMID:21883024

  12. Repetitive Model Refinement for Questionnaire Design Improvement in the Evaluation of Working Characteristics in Construction Enterprises

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeng-Wen Lin

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents an iterative confidence interval based parametric refinement approach for questionnaire design improvement in the evaluation of working characteristics in construction enterprises. This refinement approach utilizes the 95% confidence interval of the estimated parameters of the model to determine their statistical significance in a least-squares regression setting. If this confidence interval of particular parameters covers the zero value, it is statistically valid to remove such parameters from the model and their corresponding questions from the designed questionnaire. The remaining parameters repetitively undergo this sifting process until their statistical significance cannot be improved. This repetitive model refinement approach is implemented in efficient questionnaire design by using both linear series and Taylor series models to remove non-contributing questions while keeping significant questions that are contributive to the issues studied, i.e., employees’ work performance being explained by their work values and cadres’ organizational commitment being explained by their organizational management. Reducing the number of questions alleviates the respondent burden and reduces costs. The results show that the statistical significance of the sifted contributing questions is decreased with a total mean relative change of 49%, while the Taylor series model increases the R-squared value by 17% compared with the linear series model.

  13. Five-year results from a prospective multicentre study of percutaneous pulmonary valve implantation demonstrate sustained removal of significant pulmonary regurgitation, improved right ventricular outflow tract obstruction and improved quality of life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hager, Alfred; Schubert, Stephan; Ewert, Peter; Søndergaard, Lars; Witsenburg, Maarten; Guccione, Paolo; Benson, Lee N; Suárez de Lezo, José; Lung, Te-Hsin; Hess, John; Eicken, Andreas; Berger, Felix

    2017-02-20

    Percutaneous pulmonary valve implantation (PPVI) is used to treat patients with dysfunctional pulmonary valve conduits. Short- and longer-term results from multiple trials have outlined haemodynamic improvements. Our aim was to report the long-term results, including quality of life, from a multicentre trial in Europe and Canada. From October 2007 to April 2009, 71 patients (24 female; median age 19.0 [IQR: 14.0 to 25.0] years) were enrolled in a prospective cohort study. PPVI was performed successfully in 63 patients. At five-year follow-up four patients had died. Moderate and severe pulmonary regurgitation were completely resolved in all except one patient, who needed re-PPVI. Outflow tract obstruction improved significantly from a mean pressure gradient of 37.7±12.1 mmHg before PPVI to 17.3±9.7 mmHg at five-year follow-up; however, 11 patients needed treatment for restenosis. The EQ-5D quality of life utility index and visual analogue scale scores were both significantly improved six months post PPVI and remained so at five years. Five-year results following PPVI demonstrate resolved moderate or severe pulmonary regurgitation, improved right ventricular outflow tract obstruction, and improved quality of life.

  14. An improved car-following model considering headway changes with memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Shaowei; Shi, Zhongke

    2015-03-01

    To describe car-following behaviors in complex situations better, increase roadway traffic mobility and minimize cars' fuel consumptions, the linkage between headway changes with memory and car-following behaviors was explored with the field car-following data by using the gray correlation analysis method, and then an improved car-following model considering headway changes with memory on a single lane was proposed based on the full velocity difference model. Some numerical simulations were carried out by employing the improved car-following model to explore how headway changes with memory affected each car's velocity, acceleration, headway and fuel consumptions. The research results show that headway changes with memory have significant effects on car-following behaviors and fuel consumptions and that considering headway changes with memory in designing the adaptive cruise control strategy can improve the traffic flow stability and minimize cars' fuel consumptions.

  15. Improving Permafrost Hydrology Prediction Through Data-Model Integration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, C. J.; Andresen, C. G.; Atchley, A. L.; Bolton, W. R.; Busey, R.; Coon, E.; Charsley-Groffman, L.

    2017-12-01

    The CMIP5 Earth System Models were unable to adequately predict the fate of the 16GT of permafrost carbon in a warming climate due to poor representation of Arctic ecosystem processes. The DOE Office of Science Next Generation Ecosystem Experiment, NGEE-Arctic project aims to reduce uncertainty in the Arctic carbon cycle and its impact on the Earth's climate system by improved representation of the coupled physical, chemical and biological processes that drive how much buried carbon will be converted to CO2 and CH4, how fast this will happen, which form will dominate, and the degree to which increased plant productivity will offset increased soil carbon emissions. These processes fundamentally depend on permafrost thaw rate and its influence on surface and subsurface hydrology through thermal erosion, land subsidence and changes to groundwater flow pathways as soil, bedrock and alluvial pore ice and massive ground ice melts. LANL and its NGEE colleagues are co-developing data and models to better understand controls on permafrost degradation and improve prediction of the evolution of permafrost and its impact on Arctic hydrology. The LANL Advanced Terrestrial Simulator was built using a state of the art HPC software framework to enable the first fully coupled 3-dimensional surface-subsurface thermal-hydrology and land surface deformation simulations to simulate the evolution of the physical Arctic environment. Here we show how field data including hydrology, snow, vegetation, geochemistry and soil properties, are informing the development and application of the ATS to improve understanding of controls on permafrost stability and permafrost hydrology. The ATS is being used to inform parameterizations of complex coupled physical, ecological and biogeochemical processes for implementation in the DOE ACME land model, to better predict the role of changing Arctic hydrology on the global climate system. LA-UR-17-26566.

  16. How Good Is Good: Improved Tracking and Managing of Safety Goals, Performance Indicators, Production Targets and Significant Events Using Learning Curves

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duffey, Rommey B.; Saull, John W.

    2002-01-01

    We show a new way to track and measure safety and performance using learning curves derived on a mathematical basis. When unusual or abnormal events occur in plants and equipment, the regulator and good management practice requires they be reported, investigated, understood and rectified. In addition to reporting so-called 'significant events', both management and the regulator often set targets for individual and collective performance, which are used for both reward and criticism. For almost completely safe systems, like nuclear power plants, commercial aircraft and chemical facilities, many parameters are tracked and measured. Continuous improvement has to be demonstrated, as well as meeting reduced occurrence rates, which are set as management goals or targets. This process usually takes the form of statistics for availability of plant and equipment, forced or unplanned maintenance outage, loss of safety function, safety or procedural violations, etc. These are often rolled up into a set of so-called 'Performance Indicators' as measures of how well safety and operation is being managed at a given facility. The overall operating standards of an industry are also measured. A whole discipline is formed of tracking, measuring, reporting, managing and understanding the plethora of indicators and data. Decreasing occurrence rates and meeting or exceeding goals are seen and rewarded as virtues. Managers and operators need to know how good is their safety management system that has been adopted and used (and paid for), and whether it can itself be improved. We show the importance of accumulated experience in correctly measuring and tracking the decreasing event and error rates speculating a finite minimum rate. We show that the rate of improvement constitutes a measurable 'learning curve', and the attainment of the goals and targets can be affected by the adopted measures. We examine some of the available data on significant events, reportable occurrences, and loss of

  17. Improving real-time inflow forecasting into hydropower reservoirs through a complementary modelling framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gragne, A. S.; Sharma, A.; Mehrotra, R.; Alfredsen, K.

    2015-08-01

    Accuracy of reservoir inflow forecasts is instrumental for maximizing the value of water resources and benefits gained through hydropower generation. Improving hourly reservoir inflow forecasts over a 24 h lead time is considered within the day-ahead (Elspot) market of the Nordic exchange market. A complementary modelling framework presents an approach for improving real-time forecasting without needing to modify the pre-existing forecasting model, but instead formulating an independent additive or complementary model that captures the structure the existing operational model may be missing. We present here the application of this principle for issuing improved hourly inflow forecasts into hydropower reservoirs over extended lead times, and the parameter estimation procedure reformulated to deal with bias, persistence and heteroscedasticity. The procedure presented comprises an error model added on top of an unalterable constant parameter conceptual model. This procedure is applied in the 207 km2 Krinsvatn catchment in central Norway. The structure of the error model is established based on attributes of the residual time series from the conceptual model. Besides improving forecast skills of operational models, the approach estimates the uncertainty in the complementary model structure and produces probabilistic inflow forecasts that entrain suitable information for reducing uncertainty in the decision-making processes in hydropower systems operation. Deterministic and probabilistic evaluations revealed an overall significant improvement in forecast accuracy for lead times up to 17 h. Evaluation of the percentage of observations bracketed in the forecasted 95 % confidence interval indicated that the degree of success in containing 95 % of the observations varies across seasons and hydrologic years.

  18. Improving inflow forecasting into hydropower reservoirs through a complementary modelling framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gragne, A. S.; Sharma, A.; Mehrotra, R.; Alfredsen, K.

    2014-10-01

    Accuracy of reservoir inflow forecasts is instrumental for maximizing the value of water resources and benefits gained through hydropower generation. Improving hourly reservoir inflow forecasts over a 24 h lead-time is considered within the day-ahead (Elspot) market of the Nordic exchange market. We present here a new approach for issuing hourly reservoir inflow forecasts that aims to improve on existing forecasting models that are in place operationally, without needing to modify the pre-existing approach, but instead formulating an additive or complementary model that is independent and captures the structure the existing model may be missing. Besides improving forecast skills of operational models, the approach estimates the uncertainty in the complementary model structure and produces probabilistic inflow forecasts that entrain suitable information for reducing uncertainty in the decision-making processes in hydropower systems operation. The procedure presented comprises an error model added on top of an un-alterable constant parameter conceptual model, the models being demonstrated with reference to the 207 km2 Krinsvatn catchment in central Norway. The structure of the error model is established based on attributes of the residual time series from the conceptual model. Deterministic and probabilistic evaluations revealed an overall significant improvement in forecast accuracy for lead-times up to 17 h. Season based evaluations indicated that the improvement in inflow forecasts varies across seasons and inflow forecasts in autumn and spring are less successful with the 95% prediction interval bracketing less than 95% of the observations for lead-times beyond 17 h.

  19. Spirulina Supplements Improved the Nutritional Status of Undernourished Children Quickly and Significantly: Experience from Kisantu, the Democratic Republic of the Congo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Féfé Khuabi Matondo

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim. Despite high levels of malnutrition, there is still very little information on the nutritional benefits of Spirulina, a natural alga that provides essential amino acids, rare essential lipids, and numerous minerals and vitamins, to undernourished children in the world. Methods. We carried out a prospective study of 50 children aged between six and 60 months. The intervention group consisted of 16 children who received 10 g of Spirulina daily, as well as the local diet administered by the nutritional centre, and the control group of 34 children who just received the local diet. Both groups of children were assessed on day zero, day 15, and day 30. Results. After treatment, the weight-for-age Z scores and weight-for-height Z scores increased significantly in the intervention group. At day 15, there was a statistically significant difference between the mean corpuscular volume, total proteins, and albumin (p<0.05 in both groups, in favour of the intervention group, and at day 30, this difference extended to all of the studied parameters (p<0.05. Conclusion. This study found that the nutritional status of undernourished children who received Spirulina supplements as well as the local diet administered by the nutritional centre improved quickly and significantly.

  20. Improving statistical reasoning theoretical models and practical implications

    CERN Document Server

    Sedlmeier, Peter

    1999-01-01

    This book focuses on how statistical reasoning works and on training programs that can exploit people''s natural cognitive capabilities to improve their statistical reasoning. Training programs that take into account findings from evolutionary psychology and instructional theory are shown to have substantially larger effects that are more stable over time than previous training regimens. The theoretical implications are traced in a neural network model of human performance on statistical reasoning problems. This book apppeals to judgment and decision making researchers and other cognitive scientists, as well as to teachers of statistics and probabilistic reasoning.

  1. Optical polarization tractography revealed significant fiber disarray in skeletal muscles of a mouse model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Y; Zhang, K; Wasala, N B; Duan, D; Yao, G

    2015-02-01

    Optical polarization tractography (OPT) was recently developed to visualize tissue fiber architecture with cellular-level resolution and accuracy. In this study, we explored the feasibility of using OPT to study muscle disease in the mdx4cv mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. The freshly dissected tibialis anterior muscles of mdx4cv and normal mice were imaged. A "fiber disarray index" (FDI) was developed to quantify the myofiber disorganization. In necrotic muscle regions of the mdx4cv mice, the FDI was significantly elevated and can be used to segment the 3D necrotic regions for assessing the overall muscle damage. These results demonstrated the OPT's capability for imaging microscopic fiber alternations in muscle research.

  2. Improvement of insulin secretion in rat models of diabetes after ACEI/ARB therapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tian Jingyan; Li Fengying; Liu Yun; Long Hongmei; Li Weiyi; Wang Xiao; Zhang Hongli; Li Guo; Luo Min

    2009-01-01

    Objective To study the effect of ACEI/ARB therapy on the secretion of insulin and glucagon as well as serum lipid peroxidation marker 8-iso PGF-2α levels in streptozoticin (STZ) induced diabetic rat models.Methods Twenty-four rat models of STZ induced diabetes were prepared (random blood sugar>16.7 mmol/L). Of which, 8 models were fed enalaprial 5mg/kg/d, 8 models were fed losartan 10μg/kg/d and 8 models left unterated. Fasting serum insulin,glucagon (with RIA) and 8-iso PGF-2α (with ELISA) levels were measured in these models and 8 control rats three weeks later. Intravenous glucose tolerance test (IVGTT) were performed in 12 rats (3 animals in each group) six weeks later. Results: Serum levels of insulin in the treated models were higher than those in the non-treated models but without significance (P>0.05). Serum levels of glucagon and 8-iso PGF-2α levels in the treated models were significantly lower than those in the non-treated models (P 6 x ) in the treated models. Conclusion: ACEI/ARB treatment could improve the secretion of insulin in rat models of diabetes, which might be beneficial for controlling the progression of the disease. This phenomenon is consistent with the result of clinical study. (authors)

  3. A national-scale model of linear features improves predictions of farmland biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Martin J P; Pearce-Higgins, James W; Newson, Stuart E; Scholefield, Paul; Brereton, Tom; Oliver, Tom H

    2017-12-01

    Modelling species distribution and abundance is important for many conservation applications, but it is typically performed using relatively coarse-scale environmental variables such as the area of broad land-cover types. Fine-scale environmental data capturing the most biologically relevant variables have the potential to improve these models. For example, field studies have demonstrated the importance of linear features, such as hedgerows, for multiple taxa, but the absence of large-scale datasets of their extent prevents their inclusion in large-scale modelling studies.We assessed whether a novel spatial dataset mapping linear and woody-linear features across the UK improves the performance of abundance models of 18 bird and 24 butterfly species across 3723 and 1547 UK monitoring sites, respectively.Although improvements in explanatory power were small, the inclusion of linear features data significantly improved model predictive performance for many species. For some species, the importance of linear features depended on landscape context, with greater importance in agricultural areas. Synthesis and applications . This study demonstrates that a national-scale model of the extent and distribution of linear features improves predictions of farmland biodiversity. The ability to model spatial variability in the role of linear features such as hedgerows will be important in targeting agri-environment schemes to maximally deliver biodiversity benefits. Although this study focuses on farmland, data on the extent of different linear features are likely to improve species distribution and abundance models in a wide range of systems and also can potentially be used to assess habitat connectivity.

  4. Low-level radioactive waste from commercial nuclear reactors. Volume 1. Recommendations for technology developments with potential to significantly improve low-level radioactive waste management

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rodgers, B.R.; Jolley, R.L.

    1986-02-01

    The overall task of this program was to provide an assessment of currently available technology for treating commercial low-level radioactive waste (LLRW), to initiate development of a methodology for choosing one technology for a given application, and to identify research needed to improve current treatment techniques and decision methodology. The resulting report is issued in four volumes. Volume 1 provides an executive summary and a general introduction to the four-volume set, in addition to recommendations for research and development (R and D) for low-level radioactive waste (LLRW) treatment. Generic, long-range, and/or high-risk programs identified and prioritized as needed R and D in the LLRW field include: (1) systems analysis to develop decision methodology; (2) alternative processes for dismantling, decontaminating, and decommissioning; (3) ion exchange; (4) incinerator technology; (5) disposal technology; (6) demonstration of advanced technologies; (7) technical assistance; (8) below regulatory concern materials; (9) mechanical treatment techniques; (10) monitoring and analysis procedures; (11) radical process improvements; (12) physical, chemical, thermal, and biological processes; (13) fundamental chemistry; (14) interim storage; (15) modeling; and (16) information transfer. The several areas are discussed in detail.

  5. Flooding Experiments and Modeling for Improved Reactor Safety

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Solmos, M.; Hogan, K.J.; VIerow, K.

    2008-01-01

    Countercurrent two-phase flow and 'flooding' phenomena in light water reactor systems are being investigated experimentally and analytically to improve reactor safety of current and future reactors. The aspects that will be better clarified are the effects of condensation and tube inclination on flooding in large diameter tubes. The current project aims to improve the level of understanding of flooding mechanisms and to develop an analysis model for more accurate evaluations of flooding in the pressurizer surge line of a Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR). Interest in flooding has recently increased because Countercurrent Flow Limitation (CCFL) in the AP600 pressurizer surge line can affect the vessel refill rate following a small break LOCA and because analysis of hypothetical severe accidents with the current flooding models in reactor safety codes shows that these models represent the largest uncertainty in analysis of steam generator tube creep rupture. During a hypothetical station blackout without auxiliary feedwater recovery, should the hot leg become voided, the pressurizer liquid will drain to the hot leg and flooding may occur in the surge line. The flooding model heavily influences the pressurizer emptying rate and the potential for surge line structural failure due to overheating and creep rupture. The air-water test results in vertical tubes are presented in this paper along with a semi-empirical correlation for the onset of flooding. The unique aspects of the study include careful experimentation on large-diameter tubes and an integrated program in which air-water testing provides benchmark knowledge and visualization data from which to conduct steam-water testing

  6. Towards an Improved Represenation of Reservoirs and Water Management in a Land Surface-Hydrology Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yassin, F.; Anis, M. R.; Razavi, S.; Wheater, H. S.

    2017-12-01

    Water management through reservoirs, diversions, and irrigation have significantly changed river flow regimes and basin-wide energy and water balance cycles. Failure to represent these effects limits the performance of land surface-hydrology models not only for streamflow prediction but also for the estimation of soil moisture, evapotranspiration, and feedbacks to the atmosphere. Despite recent research to improve the representation of water management in land surface models, there remains a need to develop improved modeling approaches that work in complex and highly regulated basins such as the 406,000 km2 Saskatchewan River Basin (SaskRB). A particular challenge for regional and global application is a lack of local information on reservoir operational management. To this end, we implemented a reservoir operation, water abstraction, and irrigation algorithm in the MESH land surface-hydrology model and tested it over the SaskRB. MESH is Environment Canada's Land Surface-hydrology modeling system that couples Canadian Land Surface Scheme (CLASS) with hydrological routing model. The implemented reservoir algorithm uses an inflow-outflow relationship that accounts for the physical characteristics of reservoirs (e.g., storage-area-elevation relationships) and includes simplified operational characteristics based on local information (e.g., monthly target volume and release under limited, normal, and flood storage zone). The irrigation algorithm uses the difference between actual and potential evapotranspiration to estimate irrigation water demand. This irrigation demand is supplied from the neighboring reservoirs/diversion in the river system. We calibrated the model enabled with the new reservoir and irrigation modules in a multi-objective optimization setting. Results showed that the reservoir and irrigation modules significantly improved the MESH model performance in generating streamflow and evapotranspiration across the SaskRB and that this our approach provides

  7. Improvement in Geoid Models for Ocean Circulation Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapley, Byron D.; Chambers, Don P.; Poole, Steve; Ries, John c.

    2003-01-01

    At wavelengths of 500 km and longer, the GRACE GGM01 Model produces a significantly better marine geoid than any previous model. This conclusion follows from evaluating the geostrophic currents determined by combining the model with a mean sea surface from altimetry. The agreement with currents computed from a traditional hydrographic map is very close, which suggests that one of the primary missions of the TOPEX/POSEIDON mission, to determine the absolute dynamic ocean topography, may soon be met. This solution has been made available to the public at http://www.csr.utexs.edu/grace/gravity. The results reported in this paper have been presented at the 2003 EGS-AGU-EUG Joint Assembly. Two articles are currently being prepared for Geophysical Research Letters to summarize these results.

  8. Bacteriophage treatment significantly reduces viable Clostridium difficile and prevents toxin production in an in vitro model system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meader, Emma; Mayer, Melinda J; Gasson, Michael J; Steverding, Dietmar; Carding, Simon R; Narbad, Arjan

    2010-12-01

    Clostridium difficile is primarily a nosocomial pathogen, causing thousands of cases of antibiotic-associated diarrhoea in the UK each year. In this study, we used a batch fermentation model of a C. difficile colonised system to evaluate the potential of a prophylactic and a remedial bacteriophage treatment regime to control the pathogen. It is shown that the prophylaxis regime was effective at preventing the growth of C. difficile (p = viable C. difficile cells (p = <0.0001), but still resulted in a lower level of toxin production relative to the control. The numbers of commensal bacteria including total aerobes and anaerobes, Bifidobacterium sp., Bacteroides sp., Lactobacillus sp., total Clostridium sp., and Enterobacteriaceae were not significantly decreased by this therapy, whereas significant detrimental effects were observed with metronidazole treatment. Our study indicates that phage therapy has potential to be used for the control of C. difficile; it highlights the main benefits of this approach, and some future challenges. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. OPTIMIZATION OF DEEP DRILLING PERFORMANCE--DEVELOPMENT AND BENCHMARK TESTING OF ADVANCED DIAMOND PRODUCT DRILL BITS & HP/HT FLUIDS TO SIGNIFICANTLY IMPROVE RATES OF PENETRATION

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alan Black; Arnis Judzis

    2004-10-01

    The industry cost shared program aims to benchmark drilling rates of penetration in selected simulated deep formations and to significantly improve ROP through a team development of aggressive diamond product drill bit--fluid system technologies. Overall the objectives are as follows: Phase 1--Benchmark ''best in class'' diamond and other product drilling bits and fluids and develop concepts for a next level of deep drilling performance; Phase 2--Develop advanced smart bit-fluid prototypes and test at large scale; and Phase 3--Field trial smart bit-fluid concepts, modify as necessary and commercialize products. As of report date, TerraTek has concluded all major preparations for the high pressure drilling campaign. Baker Hughes encountered difficulties in providing additional pumping capacity before TerraTek's scheduled relocation to another facility, thus the program was delayed further to accommodate the full testing program.

  10. Significant improvements in near vision, reading speed, central visual field and related quality of life after ranibizumab treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frennesson, Christina; Nilsson, Ulla L; Peebo, Beatrice B; Nilsson, Sven E G

    2010-06-01

    To investigate the effects on near visual acuity, reading speed, central visual field and related quality of life of ranibizumab treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The study was a prospective, non-comparative consecutive case series, followed for 3 months and investigator-driven. Thirty eyes of 30 patients with wet AMD were included, mean age 75 years (range 69-95 years). In addition to a full ophthalmological examination--including best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA; Early Treatment Diabetic Research Study chart), fundus biomicroscopy, fundus photography, fluorescein angiography, indocyanine green angiography (occult cases) and ocular coherence tomography--near visual acuity, reading speed, central visual field and quality of life for related activities were also investigated at baseline and at 3 months after ranibizumab treatment. Mean BCVA increased from 62 +/- 11 to 66 +/- 14 letters at 3 months (7%; p = 0.018). Near vision improved from 9 +/- 5 to 6 +/- 3 points (33%; p = 0.0006) and reading speed increased from 59 +/- 40 to 85 +/- 50 words/min (44%; p Reading newspaper text in the group in which the better eye was treated showed the highest increase in quality of life score of all: 116%. The increase in BCVA after ranibizumab treatment is well established. The present study also showed significant improvements in other important visual qualities, such as near visual acuity, reading speed, central visual field and several activities influencing quality of life. The improvement was greater for near activities than for distance activities. Therefore, the beneficial effects of ranibizumab treatment shown here are more extensive than those reported previously.

  11. The effectiveness of the anti-CD11d treatment is reduced in rat models of spinal cord injury that produce significant levels of intraspinal hemorrhage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geremia, N M; Hryciw, T; Bao, F; Streijger, F; Okon, E; Lee, J H T; Weaver, L C; Dekaban, G A; Kwon, B K; Brown, A

    2017-09-01

    We have previously reported that administration of a CD11d monoclonal antibody (mAb) improves recovery in a clip-compression model of SCI. In this model the CD11d mAb reduces the infiltration of activated leukocytes into the injured spinal cord (as indicated by reduced intraspinal MPO). However not all anti-inflammatory strategies have reported beneficial results, suggesting that success of the CD11d mAb treatment may depend on the type or severity of the injury. We therefore tested the CD11d mAb treatment in a rat hemi-contusion model of cervical SCI. In contrast to its effects in the clip-compression model, the CD11d mAb treatment did not improve forelimb function nor did it significantly reduce MPO levels in the hemi-contused cord. To determine if the disparate results using the CD11d mAb were due to the biomechanical nature of the cord injury (compression SCI versus contusion SCI) or to the spinal level of the injury (12th thoracic level versus cervical) we further evaluated the CD11d mAb treatment after a T12 contusion SCI. In contrast to the T12 clip compression SCI, the CD11d mAb treatment did not improve locomotor recovery or significantly reduce MPO levels after T12 contusion SCI. Lesion analyses revealed increased levels of hemorrhage after contusion SCI compared to clip-compression SCI. SCI that is accompanied by increased intraspinal hemorrhage would be predicted to be refractory to the CD11d mAb therapy as this approach targets leukocyte diapedesis through the intact vasculature. These results suggest that the disparate results of the anti-CD11d treatment in contusion and clip-compression models of SCI are due to the different pathophysiological mechanisms that dominate these two types of spinal cord injuries. Crown Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. On the significance of contaminant plume-scale and dose-response models in defining hydrogeological characterization needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Barros, F.; Rubin, Y.; Maxwell, R.; Bai, H.

    2007-12-01

    Defining rational and effective hydrogeological data acquisition strategies is of crucial importance since financial resources available for such efforts are always limited. Usually such strategies are developed with the goal of reducing uncertainty, but less often they are developed in the context of the impacts of uncertainty. This paper presents an approach for determining site characterization needs based on human health risk factors. The main challenge is in striking a balance between improved definition of hydrogeological, behavioral and physiological parameters. Striking this balance can provide clear guidance on setting priorities for data acquisition and for better estimating adverse health effects in humans. This paper addresses this challenge through theoretical developments and numerical testing. We will report on a wide range of factors that affect the site characterization needs including contaminant plume's dimensions, travel distances and other length scales that characterize the transport problem, as well as health risk models. We introduce a new graphical tool that allows one to investigate the relative impact of hydrogeological and physiological parameters in risk. Results show that the impact of uncertainty reduction in the risk-related parameters decreases with increasing distances from the contaminant source. Also, results indicate that human health risk becomes less sensitive to hydrogeological measurements when dealing with ergodic plumes. This indicates that under ergodic conditions, uncertainty reduction in human health risk may benefit from better understanding of the physiological component as opposed to a detailed hydrogeological characterization

  13. Improving significantly the failure strain and work hardening response of LPSO-strengthened Mg-Y-Zn-Al alloy via hot extrusion speed control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Xinghe; Chee, Winston; Chan, Jimmy; Kwok, Richard; Gupta, Manoj

    2017-07-01

    The effect of hot extrusion speed on the microstructure and mechanical properties of MgY1.06Zn0.76Al0.42 (at%) alloy strengthened by the novel long-period stacking ordered (LPSO) phase was systematically investigated. Increase in the speed of extrusion accelerated dynamic recrystallization of α-Mg via particle-stimulated nucleation and grain growth in the alloy. The intensive recrystallization and grain growth events weakened the conventional basal texture and Hall-Petch strengthening in the alloy which led to significant improvement in its failure strain from 4.9% to 19.6%. The critical strengthening contribution from LPSO phase known for attributing high strength to the alloy was observed to be greatly undermined by the parallel competition from texture weakening and the adverse Hall-Petch effect when the alloy was extruded at higher speed. Absence of work hardening interestingly observed in the alloy extruded at lower speed was discussed in terms of its ultra-fine grained microstructure which promoted the condition of steady-state defect density in the alloy; where dislocation annihilation balances out the generation of new dislocations during plastic deformation. One approach to improve work hardening response of the alloy to prevent unstable deformation and abrupt failure in service is to increase the grain diameter in the alloy by judiciously increasing the extrusion speed.

  14. Call-to-balloon time dashboard in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction results in significant improvement in the logistic chain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermans, Maaike P J; Velders, Matthijs A; Smeekes, Martin; Drexhage, Olivier S; Hautvast, Raymond W M; Ytsma, Timon; Schalij, Martin J; Umans, Victor A W M

    2017-08-04

    Timely reperfusion with primary percutaneous coronary intervention (pPCI) in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) patients is associated with superior clinical outcomes. Aiming to reduce ischaemic time, an innovative system for home-to-hospital (H2H) time monitoring was implemented, which enabled real-time evaluation of ischaemic time intervals, regular feedback and improvements in the logistic chain. The objective of this study was to assess the results after implementation of the H2H dashboard for monitoring and evaluation of ischaemic time in STEMI patients. Ischaemic time in STEMI patients transported by emergency medical services (EMS) and treated with pPCI in the Noordwest Ziekenhuis, Alkmaar before (2008-2009; n=495) and after the implementation of the H2H dashboard (2011-2014; n=441) was compared. Median time intervals were significantly shorter in the H2H group (door-to-balloon time 32 [IQR 25-43] vs. 40 [IQR 28-55] minutes, p-value dashboard was independently associated with shorter time delays. Real-time monitoring and feedback on time delay with the H2H dashboard improves the logistic chain in STEMI patients, resulting in shorter ischaemic time intervals.

  15. Formation of algae growth constitutive relations for improved algae modeling.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gharagozloo, Patricia E.; Drewry, Jessica Louise.

    2013-01-01

    This SAND report summarizes research conducted as a part of a two year Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project to improve our abilities to model algal cultivation. Algae-based biofuels have generated much excitement due to their potentially large oil yield from relatively small land use and without interfering with the food or water supply. Algae mitigate atmospheric CO2 through metabolism. Efficient production of algal biofuels could reduce dependence on foreign oil by providing a domestic renewable energy source. Important factors controlling algal productivity include temperature, nutrient concentrations, salinity, pH, and the light-to-biomass conversion rate. Computational models allow for inexpensive predictions of algae growth kinetics in these non-ideal conditions for various bioreactor sizes and geometries without the need for multiple expensive measurement setups. However, these models need to be calibrated for each algal strain. In this work, we conduct a parametric study of key marine algae strains and apply the findings to a computational model.

  16. An improved experimental model for peripheral neuropathy in rats

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dias, Q.M.; Rossaneis, A.C.; Fais, R.S.; Prado, W.A. [Departamento de Farmacologia, Faculdade de Medicina de Ribeirão Preto, Universidade de São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP (Brazil)

    2013-03-15

    A modification of the Bennett and Xie chronic constriction injury model of peripheral painful neuropathy was developed in rats. Under tribromoethanol anesthesia, a single ligature with 100% cotton glace thread was placed around the right sciatic nerve proximal to its trifurcation. The change in the hind paw reflex threshold after mechanical stimulation observed with this modified model was compared to the change in threshold observed in rats subjected to the Bennett and Xie or the Kim and Chung spinal ligation models. The mechanical threshold was measured with an automated electronic von Frey apparatus 0, 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, and this threshold was compared to that measured in sham rats. All injury models produced significant hyperalgesia in the operated hind limb. The modified model produced mean ± SD thresholds in g (19.98 ± 3.08, 14.98 ± 1.86, and 13.80 ± 1.00 at 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, respectively) similar to those obtained with the spinal ligation model (20.03 ± 1.99, 13.46 ± 2.55, and 12.46 ± 2.38 at 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, respectively), but less variable when compared to the Bennett and Xie model (21.20 ± 8.06, 18.61 ± 7.69, and 18.76 ± 6.46 at 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, respectively). The modified method required less surgical skill than the spinal nerve ligation model.

  17. An improved experimental model for peripheral neuropathy in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Q.M. Dias

    Full Text Available A modification of the Bennett and Xie chronic constriction injury model of peripheral painful neuropathy was developed in rats. Under tribromoethanol anesthesia, a single ligature with 100% cotton glace thread was placed around the right sciatic nerve proximal to its trifurcation. The change in the hind paw reflex threshold after mechanical stimulation observed with this modified model was compared to the change in threshold observed in rats subjected to the Bennett and Xie or the Kim and Chung spinal ligation models. The mechanical threshold was measured with an automated electronic von Frey apparatus 0, 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, and this threshold was compared to that measured in sham rats. All injury models produced significant hyperalgesia in the operated hind limb. The modified model produced mean ± SD thresholds in g (19.98 ± 3.08, 14.98 ± 1.86, and 13.80 ± 1.00 at 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, respectively similar to those obtained with the spinal ligation model (20.03 ± 1.99, 13.46 ± 2.55, and 12.46 ± 2.38 at 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, respectively, but less variable when compared to the Bennett and Xie model (21.20 ± 8.06, 18.61 ± 7.69, and 18.76 ± 6.46 at 2, 7, and 14 days after surgery, respectively. The modified method required less surgical skill than the spinal nerve ligation model.

  18. Epigenetic reprogramming, gene expression and in vitro development of porcine SCNT embryos are significantly improved by a histone deacetylase inhibitor--m-carboxycinnamic acid bishydroxamide (CBHA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Yuran; Hai, Tang; Wang, Ying; Guo, Runfa; Li, Wei; Wang, Liu; Zhou, Qi

    2014-05-01

    Insufficient epigenetic reprogramming of donor nuclei is believed to be one of the most important causes of low development efficiency of mammalian somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). Previous studies have shown that both the in vitro and in vivo development of mouse SCNT embryos could be increased significantly by treatment with various histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi), including Trichostatin A, Scriptaid, and m-carboxycinnamic acid bishydroxamide (CBHA), in which only the effect of CBHA has not yet been tested in other species. In this paper we examine the effect of CBHA treatment on the development of porcine SCNT embryos. We have discovered the optimum dosage and time for CBHA treatment: incubating SCNT embryos with 2 μmol/L CBHA for 24 h after activation could increase the blastocyst rate from 12.7% to 26.5%. Immunofluorescence results showed that the level of acetylation at histone 3 lysine 9 (AcH3K9), acetylation at histone 3 lysine 18 (AcH3K18), and acetylation at histone 4 lysine 16 (AcH4K16) was raised after CBHA treatment. Meanwhile, CBHA treatment improved the expression of development relating genes such as pou5f1, cdx2, and the imprinted genes like igf2. Despite these promising in vitro results and histone reprogramming, the full term development was not significantly increased after treatment. In conclusion, CBHA improves the in vitro development of pig SCNT embryos, increases the global histone acetylation and corrects the expression of some developmentally important genes at early stages. As in mouse SCNT, we have shown that nuclear epigenetic reprogramming in pig early SCNT embryos can be modified by CBHA treatment.

  19. Optimization of Deep Drilling Performance--Development and Benchmark Testing of Advanced Diamond Product Drill Bits & HP/HT Fluids to Significantly Improve Rates of Penetration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alan Black; Arnis Judzis

    2003-10-01

    This document details the progress to date on the OPTIMIZATION OF DEEP DRILLING PERFORMANCE--DEVELOPMENT AND BENCHMARK TESTING OF ADVANCED DIAMOND PRODUCT DRILL BITS AND HP/HT FLUIDS TO SIGNIFICANTLY IMPROVE RATES OF PENETRATION contract for the year starting October 2002 through September 2002. The industry cost shared program aims to benchmark drilling rates of penetration in selected simulated deep formations and to significantly improve ROP through a team development of aggressive diamond product drill bit--fluid system technologies. Overall the objectives are as follows: Phase 1--Benchmark ''best in class'' diamond and other product drilling bits and fluids and develop concepts for a next level of deep drilling performance; Phase 2--Develop advanced smart bit--fluid prototypes and test at large scale; and Phase 3--Field trial smart bit--fluid concepts, modify as necessary and commercialize products. Accomplishments to date include the following: 4Q 2002--Project started; Industry Team was assembled; Kick-off meeting was held at DOE Morgantown; 1Q 2003--Engineering meeting was held at Hughes Christensen, The Woodlands Texas to prepare preliminary plans for development and testing and review equipment needs; Operators started sending information regarding their needs for deep drilling challenges and priorities for large-scale testing experimental matrix; Aramco joined the Industry Team as DEA 148 objectives paralleled the DOE project; 2Q 2003--Engineering and planning for high pressure drilling at TerraTek commenced; 3Q 2003--Continuation of engineering and design work for high pressure drilling at TerraTek; Baker Hughes INTEQ drilling Fluids and Hughes Christensen commence planning for Phase 1 testing--recommendations for bits and fluids.

  20. Improving activity transport models for water-cooled nuclear power reactors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burrill, K.A

    2001-08-01

    Eight current models for describing radioactivity transport and radiation field growth around water-cooled nuclear power reactors have been reviewed and assessed. A frequent failing of the models is the arbitrary nature of the determination of the important processes. Nearly all modelers agree that the kinetics of deposition and release of both dissolved and particulate material must be described. Plant data must be used to guide the selection and development of suitable improved models, with a minimum of empirically-based rate constraints being used. Limiting case modelling based on experimental data is suggested as a way to simplify current models and remove their subjectivity. Improved models must consider the recent change to 'coordinated water chemistry' that appears to produce normal solubility behaviour for dissolved iron throughout the fuel cycle in PWRs, but retrograde solubility remains for dissolved nickel. Profiles are suggested for dissolved iron and nickel concentrations around the heat transport system in CANDU reactors, which operate nominally at constant chemistry, i.e., pH{sub T} constant with time, and which use carbon steel isothermal piping. These diagrams are modified for a CANDU reactor with stainless steel piping, in order to show the changes expected. The significance of these profiles for transport in PWRs is discussed for further model improvement. (author)

  1. Improving activity transport models for water-cooled nuclear power reactors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burrill, K.A.

    2001-08-01

    Eight current models for describing radioactivity transport and radiation field growth around water-cooled nuclear power reactors have been reviewed and assessed. A frequent failing of the models is the arbitrary nature of the determination of the important processes. Nearly all modelers agree that the kinetics of deposition and release of both dissolved and particulate material must be described. Plant data must be used to guide the selection and development of suitable improved models, with a minimum of empirically-based rate constraints being used. Limiting case modelling based on experimental data is suggested as a way to simplify current models and remove their subjectivity. Improved models must consider the recent change to 'coordinated water chemistry' that appears to produce normal solubility behaviour for dissolved iron throughout the fuel cycle in PWRs, but retrograde solubility remains for dissolved nickel. Profiles are suggested for dissolved iron and nickel concentrations around the heat transport system in CANDU reactors, which operate nominally at constant chemistry, i.e., pH T constant with time, and which use carbon steel isothermal piping. These diagrams are modified for a CANDU reactor with stainless steel piping, in order to show the changes expected. The significance of these profiles for transport in PWRs is discussed for further model improvement. (author)

  2. Improved thermal lattice Boltzmann model for simulation of liquid-vapor phase change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Qing; Zhou, P.; Yan, H. J.

    2017-12-01

    In this paper, an improved thermal lattice Boltzmann (LB) model is proposed for simulating liquid-vapor phase change, which is aimed at improving an existing thermal LB model for liquid-vapor phase change [S. Gong and P. Cheng, Int. J. Heat Mass Transfer 55, 4923 (2012), 10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2012.04.037]. First, we emphasize that the replacement of ∇ .(λ ∇ T ) /∇.(λ ∇ T ) ρ cV ρ cV with ∇ .(χ ∇ T ) is an inappropriate treatment for diffuse interface modeling of liquid-vapor phase change. Furthermore, the error terms ∂t 0(T v ) +∇ .(T vv ) , which exist in the macroscopic temperature equation recovered from the previous model, are eliminated in the present model through a way that is consistent with the philosophy of the LB method. Moreover, the discrete effect of the source term is also eliminated in the present model. Numerical simulations are performed for droplet evaporation and bubble nucleation to validate the capability of the model for simulating liquid-vapor phase change. It is shown that the numerical results of the improved model agree well with those of a finite-difference scheme. Meanwhile, it is found that the replacement of ∇ .(λ ∇ T ) /∇ .(λ ∇ T ) ρ cV ρ cV with ∇ .(χ ∇ T ) leads to significant numerical errors and the error terms in the recovered macroscopic temperature equation also result in considerable errors.

  3. Re-engineering pre-employment check-up systems: a model for improving health services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rateb, Said Abdel Hakim; El Nouman, Azza Abdel Razek; Rateb, Moshira Abdel Hakim; Asar, Mohamed Naguib; El Amin, Ayman Mohammed; Gad, Saad abdel Aziz; Mohamed, Mohamed Salah Eldin

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to develop a model for improving health services provided by the pre-employment medical fitness check-up system affiliated to Egypt's Health Insurance Organization (HIO). Operations research, notably system re-engineering, is used in six randomly selected centers and findings before and after re-engineering are compared. The re-engineering model follows a systems approach, focusing on three areas: structure, process and outcome. The model is based on six main components: electronic booking, standardized check-up processes, protected medical documents, advanced archiving through an electronic content management (ECM) system, infrastructure development, and capacity building. The model originates mainly from customer needs and expectations. The centers' monthly customer flow increased significantly after re-engineering. The mean time spent per customer cycle improved after re-engineering--18.3 +/- 5.5 minutes as compared to 48.8 +/- 14.5 minutes before. Appointment delay was also significantly decreased from an average 18 to 6.2 days. Both beneficiaries and service providers were significantly more satisfied with the services after re-engineering. The model proves that re-engineering program costs are exceeded by increased revenue. Re-engineering in this study involved multiple structure and process elements. The literature review did not reveal similar re-engineering healthcare packages. Therefore, each element was compared separately. This model is highly recommended for improving service effectiveness and efficiency. This research is the first in Egypt to apply the re-engineering approach to public health systems. Developing user-friendly models for service improvement is an added value.

  4. The significance of the interception in a Thornthwaite-type monthly step water balance model in context of the climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herceg, András; Kalicz, Péter; Kisfaludi, Balázs

    2017-04-01

    The hydrological impacts of the climate change can be dramatic. Our main purpose is the methodical improvement of a previously established Thornthwaite-type monthly step water balance model, which takes the interception item into account, and compare the results of the evapotranspiration and the soil moisture projections for the 21st century of the original and the upgraded models. Both of the models will be calibrated and validated (using remote-sensed actual evapotranspiration data, called CREMAP) and requires only temperature and precipitation time series as inputs. The projections based on 4 bias-corrected regional climate models databases (FORESEE), and the 3 investigation periods are: 2015-2045, 2045-2075, and 2070-2100. The key parameter is the water storage capacity of the soil, which can be also calibrated using the actual evapotranspiration data. The maximal rooting depth is determinable if the physical properties of the soil are available. The interception can be ranges from 5-40% of gross precipitation, which rate are differing in the various plant communities. Generally, the forests canopy intercepts considerable amounts of rainfall and evaporates back into the atmosphere during and after precipitation event. Leaf area index (LAI) is one of the most significant factor, which determine the canopies storage capacity. Here, MODIS sensor based LAI time series are applied to estimate the storage capacity. A forest covered experimental catchment is utilized for testing the models near to Sopron, Hungary. The projections will expected to demonstrate increasing actual evapotranspiration values, but decreasing trends for the 10 percentile minimum soil moisture values at the end of the 21st century in both model runs. The seasonal periodicity of evapotranspiration may demonstrates the maximums in June or July, while in case of the soil moisture it may shows minimum values in autumn. With the comparison of the two model runs, we expect lower soil water storage

  5. Modelling future improvements in the St. Louis River fishery ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    The presence of fish consumption advisories has a negative impact on fishing. In the St. Louis River, an important natural resource management goal is to reduce or eliminate fish consumption advisories by remediating contaminant sediments and improving aquatic habitat. However, we currently lack sufficient understanding to estimate the cumulative effects of these habitat improvements on fish contaminant burdens. To address this gap, our study had two main research objectives: first, to determine the relationship between game fish habitat use and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) concentrations in the lower St. Louis River, and two, to calibrate and validate a habitat-based Biota-Sediment Accumulation Factor (BSAF) model that estimates fish PCBs concentration as a function of both sediment and habitat quality. We sampled two resident fishes, Yellow Perch (Perca flavescens) and Black Crappie (Pomoxis nigromaculatus), and two migratory fishes, Northern Pike (Esox lucius) and Walleye (Sander vitreus) of varying size and from locations spread across the St. Louis River estuary, the largest coastal wetland complex in Lake Superior. We found differences in contaminant concentration that were related to habitat usage, though results varied by species. For migratory fishes, increasing diet from Lake Superior was associated with decreasing PCBs concentration in tissue. For resident fishes, PCBs concentration was highest in the industrial portion of the river. Model calibra

  6. Improving student success using predictive models and data visualisations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanan Ayad

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The need to educate a competitive workforce is a global problem. In the US, for example, despite billions of dollars spent to improve the educational system, approximately 35% of students never finish high school. The drop rate among some demographic groups is as high as 50–60%. At the college level in the US only 30% of students graduate from 2-year colleges in 3 years or less and approximately 50% graduate from 4-year colleges in 5 years or less. A basic challenge in delivering global education, therefore, is improving student success. By student success we mean improving retention, completion and graduation rates. In this paper we describe a Student Success System (S3 that provides a holistic, analytical view of student academic progress.1 The core of S3 is a flexible predictive modelling engine that uses machine intelligence and statistical techniques to identify at-risk students pre-emptively. S3 also provides a set of advanced data visualisations for reaching diagnostic insights and a case management tool for managing interventions. S3's open modular architecture will also allow integration and plug-ins with both open and proprietary software. Powered by learning analytics, S3 is intended as an end-to-end solution for identifying at-risk students, understanding why they are at risk, designing interventions to mitigate that risk and finally closing the feedback look by tracking the efficacy of the applied intervention.

  7. Developing models of how cognitive improvements change functioning: mediation, moderation and moderated mediation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wykes, Til; Reeder, Clare; Huddy, Vyv; Taylor, Rumina; Wood, Helen; Ghirasim, Natalia; Kontis, Dimitrios; Landau, Sabine

    2012-06-01

    Cognitive remediation (CRT) affects functioning but the extent and type of cognitive improvements necessary are unknown. To develop and test models of how cognitive improvement transfers to work behaviour using the data from a current service. Participants (N49) with a support worker and a paid or voluntary job were offered CRT in a Phase 2 single group design with three assessments: baseline, post therapy and follow-up. Working memory, cognitive flexibility, planning and work outcomes were assessed. Three models were tested (mediation - cognitive improvements drive functioning improvement; moderation - post treatment cognitive level affects the impact of CRT on functioning; moderated mediation - cognition drives functioning improvements only after a certain level is achieved). There was evidence of mediation (planning improvement associated with improved work quality). There was no evidence that cognitive flexibility (total Wisconsin Card Sorting Test errors) and working memory (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale III digit span) mediated work functioning despite significant effects. There was some evidence of moderated mediation for planning improvement if participants had poorer memory and/or made fewer WCST errors. The total CRT effect on work quality was d=0.55, but the indirect (planning-mediated CRT effect) was d=0.082 Planning improvements led to better work quality but only accounted for a small proportion of the total effect on work outcome. Other specific and non-specific effects of CRT and the work programme are likely to account for some of the remaining effect. This is the first time complex models have been tested and future Phase 3 studies need to further test mediation and moderated mediation models. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. IMPROVED NUMERICAL METHODS FOR MODELING RIVER-AQUIFER INTERACTION.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tidwell, Vincent Carroll; Sue Tillery; Phillip King

    2008-09-01

    A new option for Local Time-Stepping (LTS) was developed to use in conjunction with the multiple-refined-area grid capability of the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) groundwater modeling program, MODFLOW-LGR (MF-LGR). The LTS option allows each local, refined-area grid to simulate multiple stress periods within each stress period of a coarser, regional grid. This option is an alternative to the current method of MF-LGR whereby the refined grids are required to have the same stress period and time-step structure as the coarse grid. The MF-LGR method for simulating multiple-refined grids essentially defines each grid as a complete model, then for each coarse grid time-step, iteratively runs each model until the head and flux changes at the interfacing boundaries of the models are less than some specified tolerances. Use of the LTS option is illustrated in two hypothetical test cases consisting of a dual well pumping system and a hydraulically connected stream-aquifer system, and one field application. Each of the hypothetical test cases was simulated with multiple scenarios including an LTS scenario, which combined a monthly stress period for a coarse grid model with a daily stress period for a refined grid model. The other scenarios simulated various combinations of grid spacing and temporal refinement using standard MODFLOW model constructs. The field application simulated an irrigated corridor along the Lower Rio Grande River in New Mexico, with refinement of a small agricultural area in the irrigated corridor.The results from the LTS scenarios for the hypothetical test cases closely replicated the results from the true scenarios in the refined areas of interest. The head errors of the LTS scenarios were much smaller than from the other scenarios in relation to the true solution, and the run times for the LTS models were three to six times faster than the true models for the dual well and stream-aquifer test cases, respectively. The results of the field

  9. New features to the night sky radiance model illumina: Hyperspectral support, improved obstacles and cloud reflection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aubé, M.; Simoneau, A.

    2018-05-01

    Illumina is one of the most physically detailed artificial night sky brightness model to date. It has been in continuous development since 2005 [1]. In 2016-17, many improvements were made to the Illumina code including an overhead cloud scheme, an improved blocking scheme for subgrid obstacles (trees and buildings), and most importantly, a full hyperspectral modeling approach. Code optimization resulted in significant reduction in execution time enabling users to run the model on standard personal computers for some applications. After describing the new schemes introduced in the model, we give some examples of applications for a peri-urban and a rural site both located inside the International Dark Sky reserve of Mont-Mégantic (QC, Canada).

  10. Advanced Model for Extreme Lift and Improved Aeroacoustics (AMELIA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lichtwardt, Jonathan; Paciano, Eric; Jameson, Tina; Fong, Robert; Marshall, David

    2012-01-01

    With the very recent advent of NASA's Environmentally Responsible Aviation Project (ERA), which is dedicated to designing aircraft that will reduce the impact of aviation on the environment, there is a need for research and development of methodologies to minimize fuel burn, emissions, and reduce community noise produced by regional airliners. ERA tackles airframe technology, propulsion technology, and vehicle systems integration to meet performance objectives in the time frame for the aircraft to be at a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of 4-6 by the year of 2020 (deemed N+2). The proceeding project that investigated similar goals to ERA was NASA's Subsonic Fixed Wing (SFW). SFW focused on conducting research to improve prediction methods and technologies that will produce lower noise, lower emissions, and higher performing subsonic aircraft for the Next Generation Air Transportation System. The work provided in this investigation was a NASA Research Announcement (NRA) contract #NNL07AA55C funded by Subsonic Fixed Wing. The project started in 2007 with a specific goal of conducting a large-scale wind tunnel test along with the development of new and improved predictive codes for the advanced powered-lift concepts. Many of the predictive codes were incorporated to refine the wind tunnel model outer mold line design. The large scale wind tunnel test goal was to investigate powered lift technologies and provide an experimental database to validate current and future modeling techniques. Powered-lift concepts investigated were Circulation Control (CC) wing in conjunction with over-the-wing mounted engines to entrain the exhaust to further increase the lift generated by CC technologies alone. The NRA was a five-year effort; during the first year the objective was to select and refine CESTOL concepts and then to complete a preliminary design of a large-scale wind tunnel model for the large scale test. During the second, third, and fourth years the large-scale wind

  11. Improving Completeness of Geometric Models from Terrestrial Laser Scanning Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clemens Nothegger

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The application of terrestrial laser scanning for the documentation of cultural heritage assets is becoming increasingly common. While the point cloud by itself is sufficient for satisfying many documentation needs, it is often desirable to use this data for applications other than documentation. For these purposes a triangulated model is usually required. The generation of topologically correct triangulated models from terrestrial laser scans, however, still requires much interactive editing. This is especially true when reconstructing models from medium range panoramic scanners and many scan positions. Because of residual errors in the instrument calibration and the limited spatial resolution due to the laser footprint, the point clouds from different scan positions never match perfectly. Under these circumstances many of the software packages commonly used for generating triangulated models produce models which have topological errors such as surface intersecting triangles, holes or triangles which violate the manifold property. We present an algorithm which significantly reduces the number of topological errors in the models from such data. The algorithm is a modification of the Poisson surface reconstruction algorithm. Poisson surfaces are resilient to noise in the data and the algorithm always produces a closed manifold surface. Our modified algorithm partitions the data into tiles and can thus be easily parallelized. Furthermore, it avoids introducing topological errors in occluded areas, albeit at the cost of producing models which are no longer guaranteed to be closed. The algorithm is applied to scan data of sculptures of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Schönbrunn Palace and data of a petrified oyster reef in Stetten, Austria. The results of the method’s application are discussed and compared with those of alternative methods.

  12. Assessment of Th17/Treg cells and Th cytokines in an improved immune thrombocytopenia mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Guoyang; Zhang, Ping; Liu, Hongyun; Liu, Xiaoyan; Xie, Shuangfeng; Wang, Xiuju; Wu, Yudan; Chang, Jianxing; Ma, Liping

    2017-09-01

    The improved passive immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) mouse model has been extensively utilized for the study of ITP. However, how closely this model matches the human inflammation state and immune background is unclear. Our study aimed to explore the profile of Th cytokines and Th17/Treg cells in the model. We induced the ITP mouse model by dose-escalation injection of MWReg30. The serum levels of cytokines (IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-4, IL-10, IL-17A, and TGF-β1) were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and the frequency of Th17 and Treg cells was measured by flow cytometry. The mRNA expression of Foxp3 and RORrt was measured by real-time PCR. The serum levels of cytokines IFN-γ, TGF-β1, IL-4, and IL-10 were significantly lower in ITP mice. The secretion of serum proinflammatory cytokines IL-2 and IL-17A and the percentage of Th17 cells showed no statistically significant increase. In ITP mice the frequency of Treg cells and mRNA expression of Foxp3 was significantly lower in splenocytes. Our data suggest that the improved passive ITP mouse model does not mimic the autoimmune inflammatory process of human ITP. Compared with human ITP, this model has a similar change in frequency of Treg cells, which may directly or indirectly result from antibody-mediated platelet destruction due to attenuated release of TGF-β.

  13. GeoSciML v3.0 - a significant upgrade of the CGI-IUGS geoscience data model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raymond, O.; Duclaux, G.; Boisvert, E.; Cipolloni, C.; Cox, S.; Laxton, J.; Letourneau, F.; Richard, S.; Ritchie, A.; Sen, M.; Serrano, J.-J.; Simons, B.; Vuollo, J.

    2012-04-01

    GeoSciML version 3.0 (http://www.geosciml.org), released in late 2011, is the latest version of the CGI-IUGS* Interoperability Working Group geoscience data interchange standard. The new version is a significant upgrade and refactoring of GeoSciML v2 which was released in 2008. GeoSciML v3 has already been adopted by several major international interoperability initiatives, including OneGeology, the EU INSPIRE program, and the US Geoscience Information Network, as their standard data exchange format for geoscience data. GeoSciML v3 makes use of recently upgraded versions of several Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) and ISO data transfer standards, including GML v3.2, SWE Common v2.0, and Observations and Measurements v2 (ISO 19156). The GeoSciML v3 data model has been refactored from a single large application schema with many packages, into a number of smaller, but related, application schema modules with individual namespaces. This refactoring allows the use and future development of modules of GeoSciML (eg; GeologicUnit, GeologicStructure, GeologicAge, Borehole) in smaller, more manageable units. As a result of this refactoring and the integration with new OGC and ISO standards, GeoSciML v3 is not backwardly compatible with previous GeoSciML versions. The scope of GeoSciML has been extended in version 3.0 to include new models for geomorphological data (a Geomorphology application schema), and for geological specimens, geochronological interpretations, and metadata for geochemical and geochronological analyses (a LaboratoryAnalysis-Specimen application schema). In addition, there is better support for borehole data, and the PhysicalProperties model now supports a wider range of petrophysical measurements. The previously used CGI_Value data type has been superseded in favour of externally governed data types provided by OGC's SWE Common v2 and GML v3.2 data standards. The GeoSciML v3 release includes worked examples of best practice in delivering geochemical

  14. A Firming Neck Cream Containing N-Acetyl Glucosamine Significantly Improves Signs of Aging on the Challenging Neck and Décolletage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlessinger, Joel; Green, Barbara; Edison, Brenda L; Murphy, Lynn; Sabherwal, Yamini

    2016-01-01

    Noninvasive antiaging neck and décolletage treatments are highly sought after by aging patients. A topical cosmetic antiaging cream was formulated with skin matrix building and smoothing ingredients to help reverse visible signs of aging on the neck and décolletage, including laxity, crepiness, deep lines, and hyperpigmentation. A clinical study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy and safety of the antiaging neck/décolletage cream over a 16-week treatment period. Caucasian women with moderate texture (including wrinkles, fine lines, laxity, and/or crepiness) on the neck and hyperpigmentation on the décolletage used the test cream for 16 weeks. At weeks 0, 8, 12 and 16, the dermatologist investigator graded neck texture, décolletage texture and décolletage pigmentation using a 0-5 scale, and irritation/tolerability using a 0-4 scale. Subjects were photographed and provided self-assessment of their aging parameters as well as product tolerability. Chromameter measurements were collected in triplicate on the chest at weeks 0, 8, and 16 to quantitatively and objectively assess pigmentation. Forty-two women completed the study. All dermatologist-graded aging parameters were significantly improved at each time point, Pappearance of lines and wrinkles, reduced mottled hyperpigmentation, and a more youthful, firm appearance. The test cream was well-tolerated with no significant changes in irritation parameters throughout the study. The antiaging neck/décolletage cream delivered significant firming and smoothing effects with reduced appearance of hyperpigmentation and can be considered an effective topical homecare treatment option for patients seeking rejuvenation of this challenging area

  15. Suction against resistance: a new breathing technique to significantly improve the blood flow ratio of the superior and inferior vena cava

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gutzeit, Andreas [Clinical Research Unit of St. Anna Hospital Luzern, Institute of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, Luzern (Switzerland); Paracelsus Medical University Salzburg, Department of Radiology, Salzburg (Austria); Cantonal Hospital, Department of Radiology, Winterthur (Switzerland); Roos, Justus E. [Duke University, Department of Radiology, Durham, NC (United States); Hergan, Klaus [Paracelsus Medical University Salzburg, Department of Radiology, Salzburg (Austria); Weymarn, Constantin von; Reischauer, Carolin; Froehlich, Johannes M. [Clinical Research Unit of St. Anna Hospital Luzern, Institute of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, Luzern (Switzerland); Cantonal Hospital, Department of Radiology, Winterthur (Switzerland); Waelti, Stephan [Cantonal Hospital, Department of Radiology, Winterthur (Switzerland)

    2014-12-15

    Optimal contrast within the pulmonary artery is achieved by the maximum amount of contrast-enhanced blood flowing through the superior vena cava (SVC), while minimum amounts of non-contrasted blood should originate from the inferior vena cava (IVC). This study aims to clarify whether ''suction against resistance'' might optimise this ratio. Phase-contrast pulse sequences on a 1.5T MRI magnet were used for flow quantification mean flow (mL/s), stroke volume (Vol) in the SVC and IVC in volunteers. Different breathing manoeuvers were analysed repeatedly: free breathing; inspiration; expiration; suction against resistance, and Valsalva. To standardise breathing commands, volunteers performed suction and Valsalva manoeuvers with an MR-compatible manometer.??Suction against resistance was associated with a significant drop of the IVC/SVC flow quotient (1.63 [range 1.3-2.0] p < 0.05 at -10 mmHg and 1.48 [1.1-1.9] p < 0.01 at -20 mmHg) corresponding to increased blood flow from SVC and diminished flow originating from the IVC. The remaining breathing commands (free breathing 2.2; inspiration 2.4; expiration 2.4; Valsalva 10 mmHg 2.3; Valsalva 20 mmHg 2.6; and Valsalva 30 mmHg 2.2) showed no differences (p > 0.05).??Suction against resistance caused a significant drop in the IVC/SVC quotient. Theoretically, this breathing manoeuver might significantly improve the enhancement characteristics of CT angiography. (orig.)

  16. Innovative integrative bedside teaching model improves tutors’ self-assessments of teaching skills and attitudes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Itai Gat

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Patient bedside is the ideal setting for teaching physical examination, medical interviewing, and interpersonal skills. Herein we describe a novel model for bedside teaching (BST practiced during tutor training workshop and its resulting effect on practitioners’ self assessment of teaching skills and perceptions. Methods: One-day tutor training workshop included theoretical knowledge supplementation regarding tutors’ roles as well as implementing practical tools for clinical education, mainly BST model. The model, which emphasizes simultaneous clinical and communication teaching in a stepwise approach, was practiced by consecutive simulations with a gradual escalation of difficulty and adjusted instruction approaches. Pre- and post-workshop-adjusted questionnaires using a Likert scale of 1 to 4 were completed by participants and compared. Results: Analysis was based on 25 out of 48 participants who completed both questionnaires. Significantly improved teaching skills were demonstrated upon workshop completion (mean 3.3, SD 0.5 compared with pre-training (mean 2.6, SD 0.6; p<0.001 with significant increase in most examined parameters. Significantly improved tutor's roles internalization was demonstrated after training completion (mean 3.7, SD 0.3 compared with pre-workshop (mean 3.5 SD 0.5; p=0.002. Discussion: Successful BST involves combination of clinical and communication skills. BST model practiced during the workshop may contribute to improved teaching skills in this challenging environment.

  17. Significance of myoglobin as an oxygen store and oxygen transporter in the intermittently perfused human heart: a model study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endeward, Volker; Gros, Gerolf; Jürgens, Klaus D

    2010-07-01

    The mechanisms by which the left ventricular wall escapes anoxia during the systolic phase of low blood perfusion are investigated, especially the role of myoglobin (Mb), which can (i) store oxygen and (ii) facilitate intracellular oxygen transport. The quantitative role of these two Mb functions is studied in the maximally working human heart. Because discrimination between Mb functions has not been achieved experimentally, we use a Krogh cylinder model here. At a heart rate of 200 beats/min and a 1:1 ratio of diastole/systole, the systole lasts for 150 ms. The basic model assumption is that, with mobile Mb, the oxygen stored in the end-diastolic left ventricle wall exactly meets the demand during the 150 ms of systolic cessation of blood flow. The coronary blood flow necessary to achieve this agrees with literature data. By considering Mb immobile or setting its concentration to zero, respectively, we find that, depending on Mb concentration, Mb-facilitated O(2) transport maintains O(2) supply to the left ventricle wall during 22-34 of the 150 ms, while Mb storage function accounts for a further 12-17 ms. When Mb is completely absent, anoxia begins to develop after 116-99 ms. While Mb plays no significant role during diastole, it supplies O(2) to the left ventricular wall for < or = 50 ms of the 150 ms systole, whereas capillary haemoglobin is responsible for approximately 80 ms. Slight increases in haemoglobin concentration, blood flow, or capillary density can compensate the absence of Mb, a finding which agrees well with the observations using Mb knockout mice.

  18. A workflow learning model to improve geovisual analytics utility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roth, Robert E; Maceachren, Alan M; McCabe, Craig A

    2009-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: This paper describes the design and implementation of the G-EX Portal Learn Module, a web-based, geocollaborative application for organizing and distributing digital learning artifacts. G-EX falls into the broader context of geovisual analytics, a new research area with the goal of supporting visually-mediated reasoning about large, multivariate, spatiotemporal information. Because this information is unprecedented in amount and complexity, GIScientists are tasked with the development of new tools and techniques to make sense of it. Our research addresses the challenge of implementing these geovisual analytics tools and techniques in a useful manner. OBJECTIVES: The objective of this paper is to develop and implement a method for improving the utility of geovisual analytics software. The success of software is measured by its usability (i.e., how easy the software is to use?) and utility (i.e., how useful the software is). The usability and utility of software can be improved by refining the software, increasing user knowledge about the software, or both. It is difficult to achieve transparent usability (i.e., software that is immediately usable without training) of geovisual analytics software because of the inherent complexity of the included tools and techniques. In these situations, improving user knowledge about the software through the provision of learning artifacts is as important, if not more so, than iterative refinement of the software itself. Therefore, our approach to improving utility is focused on educating the user. METHODOLOGY: The research reported here was completed in two steps. First, we developed a model for learning about geovisual analytics software. Many existing digital learning models assist only with use of the software to complete a specific task and provide limited assistance with its actual application. To move beyond task-oriented learning about software use, we propose a process-oriented approach to learning based on

  19. Intelligent system for statistically significant expertise knowledge on the basis of the model of self-organizing nonequilibrium dissipative system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. A. Tatokchin

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Development of the modern educational technologies caused by broad introduction of comput-er testing and development of distant forms of education does necessary revision of methods of an examination of pupils. In work it was shown, need transition to mathematical criteria, exami-nations of knowledge which are deprived of subjectivity. In article the review of the problems arising at realization of this task and are offered approaches for its decision. The greatest atten-tion is paid to discussion of a problem of objective transformation of rated estimates of the ex-pert on to the scale estimates of the student. In general, the discussion this question is was con-cluded that the solution to this problem lies in the creation of specialized intellectual systems. The basis for constructing intelligent system laid the mathematical model of self-organizing nonequilibrium dissipative system, which is a group of students. This article assumes that the dissipative system is provided by the constant influx of new test items of the expert and non-equilibrium – individual psychological characteristics of students in the group. As a result, the system must self-organize themselves into stable patterns. This patern will allow for, relying on large amounts of data, get a statistically significant assessment of student. To justify the pro-posed approach in the work presents the data of the statistical analysis of the results of testing a large sample of students (> 90. Conclusions from this statistical analysis allowed to develop intelligent system statistically significant examination of student performance. It is based on data clustering algorithm (k-mean for the three key parameters. It is shown that this approach allows you to create of the dynamics and objective expertise evaluation.

  20. Improving Robustness of Deep Neural Network Acoustic Models via Speech Separation and Joint Adaptive Training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narayanan, Arun; Wang, DeLiang

    2015-01-01

    Although deep neural network (DNN) acoustic models are known to be inherently noise robust, especially with matched training and testing data, the use of speech separation as a frontend and for deriving alternative feature representations has been shown to improve performance in challenging environments. We first present a supervised speech separation system that significantly improves automatic speech recognition (ASR) performance in realistic noise conditions. The system performs separation via ratio time-frequency masking; the ideal ratio mask (IRM) is estimated using DNNs. We then propose a framework that unifies separation and acoustic modeling via joint adaptive training. Since the modules for acoustic modeling and speech separation are implemented using DNNs, unification is done by introducing additional hidden layers with fixed weights and appropriate network architecture. On the CHiME-2 medium-large vocabulary ASR task, and with log mel spectral features as input to the acoustic model, an independently trained ratio masking frontend improves word error rates by 10.9% (relative) compared to the noisy baseline. In comparison, the jointly trained system improves performance by 14.4%. We also experiment with alternative feature representations to augment the standard log mel features, like the noise and speech estimates obtained from the separation module, and the standard feature set used for IRM estimation. Our best system obtains a word error rate of 15.4% (absolute), an improvement of 4.6 percentage points over the next best result on this corpus.

  1. The Significance of Quality Assurance within Model Intercomparison Projects at the World Data Centre for Climate (WDCC)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toussaint, F.; Hoeck, H.; Stockhause, M.; Lautenschlager, M.

    2014-12-01

    The classical goals of a quality assessment system in the data life cycle are (1) to encourage data creators to improve their quality assessment procedures to reach the next quality level and (2) enable data consumers to decide, whether a dataset has a quality that is sufficient for usage in the target application, i.e. to appraise the data usability for their own purpose.As the data volumes of projects and the interdisciplinarity of data usage grow, the need for homogeneous structure and standardised notation of data and metadata increases. This third aspect is especially valid for the data repositories, as they manage data through machine agents. So checks for homogeneity and consistency in early parts of the workflow become essential to cope with today's data volumes.Selected parts of the workflow in the model intercomparison project CMIP5 and the archival of the data for the interdiscipliary user community of the IPCC-DDC AR5 and the associated quality checks are reviewed. We compare data and metadata checks and relate different types of checks to their positions in the data life cycle.The project's data citation approach is included in the discussion, with focus on temporal aspects of the time necessary to comply with the project's requirements for formal data citations and the demand for the availability of such data citations.In order to make different quality assessments of projects comparable, WDCC developed a generic Quality Assessment System. Based on the self-assessment approach of a maturity matrix, an objective and uniform quality level system for all data at WDCC is derived which consists of five maturity quality levels.

  2. Different Techniques of Respiratory Support Do Not Significantly Affect Gas Exchange during Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation in a Newborn Piglet Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendler, Marc R; Maurer, Miriam; Hassan, Mohammad A; Huang, Li; Waitz, Markus; Mayer, Benjamin; Hummler, Helmut D

    2015-01-01

    There are no evidence-based recommendations on the use of different techniques of respiratory support and chest compressions (CC) during neonatal cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). We studied the short-term effects of different ventilatory support strategies along with CC representing clinical practice on gas exchange [arterial oxygen saturation (SaO2), arterial partial pressure of oxygen (PaO2) and arterial partial pressure of carbon dioxide (PaCO2)], hemodynamics and cerebral oxygenation. We hypothesized that in newborn piglets with cardiac arrest, use of a T-piece resuscitator (TPR) providing positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) improves gas exchange as measured by SaO2 during CPR as compared to using a self-inflating bag (SIB) without PEEP. Furthermore, we explored the effects of a mechanical ventilator without synchrony to CC. Thirty newborn piglets with asystole were randomized into three groups and resuscitated for 20 min [fraction of inspired oxygen (FiO2) = 0.21 for 10 min and 1.0 thereafter]. Group 1 received ventilation using a TPR [peak inspiratory pressure (PIP)/PEEP of 20/5 cm H2O, rate 30/min] with inflations interposed between CC (3:1 ratio). Group 2 received ventilation using a SIB (PIP of 20 cm H2O without PEEP, rate 30/min) with inflations interposed between CC (3:1 ratio). Group 3 received ventilation using a mechanical ventilator (PIP/PEEP of 20/5 cm H2O, rate 30/min). CC were applied with a rate of 120/min without synchrony to inflations. We found no significant differences in SaO2 between the three groups. However, there was a trend toward a higher SaO2 [TPR: 28.0% (22.3-40.0); SIB: 23.7% (13.4-52.3); ventilator: 44.1% (39.2-54.3); median (interquartile range)] and a lower PaCO2 [TPR: 95.6 mm Hg (82.1-113.6); SIB: 100.8 mm Hg (83.0-108.0); ventilator: 74.1 mm Hg (68.5-83.1); median (interquartile range)] in the mechanical ventilator group. We found no significant effect on gas exchange using different respiratory support strategies

  3. Improved Mental Acuity Forecasting with an Individualized Quantitative Sleep Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brent D. Winslow

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Sleep impairment significantly alters human brain structure and cognitive function, but available evidence suggests that adults in developed nations are sleeping less. A growing body of research has sought to use sleep to forecast cognitive performance by modeling the relationship between the two, but has generally focused on vigilance rather than other cognitive constructs affected by sleep, such as reaction time, executive function, and working memory. Previous modeling efforts have also utilized subjective, self-reported sleep durations and were restricted to laboratory environments. In the current effort, we addressed these limitations by employing wearable systems and mobile applications to gather objective sleep information, assess multi-construct cognitive performance, and model/predict changes to mental acuity. Thirty participants were recruited for participation in the study, which lasted 1 week. Using the Fitbit Charge HR and a mobile version of the automated neuropsychological assessment metric called CogGauge, we gathered a series of features and utilized the unified model of performance to predict mental acuity based on sleep records. Our results suggest that individuals poorly rate their sleep duration, supporting the need for objective sleep metrics to model circadian changes to mental acuity. Participant compliance in using the wearable throughout the week and responding to the CogGauge assessments was 80%. Specific biases were identified in temporal metrics across mobile devices and operating systems and were excluded from the mental acuity metric development. Individualized prediction of mental acuity consistently outperformed group modeling. This effort indicates the feasibility of creating an individualized, mobile assessment and prediction of mental acuity, compatible with the majority of current mobile devices.

  4. Improved Mental Acuity Forecasting with an Individualized Quantitative Sleep Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winslow, Brent D; Nguyen, Nam; Venta, Kimberly E

    2017-01-01

    Sleep impairment significantly alters human brain structure and cognitive function, but available evidence suggests that adults in developed nations are sleeping less. A growing body of research has sought to use sleep to forecast cognitive performance by modeling the relationship between the two, but has generally focused on vigilance rather than other cognitive constructs affected by sleep, such as reaction time, executive function, and working memory. Previous modeling efforts have also utilized subjective, self-reported sleep durations and were restricted to laboratory environments. In the current effort, we addressed these limitations by employing wearable systems and mobile applications to gather objective sleep information, assess multi-construct cognitive performance, and model/predict changes to mental acuity. Thirty participants were recruited for participation in the study, which lasted 1 week. Using the Fitbit Charge HR and a mobile version of the automated neuropsychological assessment metric called CogGauge, we gathered a series of features and utilized the unified model of performance to predict mental acuity based on sleep records. Our results suggest that individuals poorly rate their sleep duration, supporting the need for objective sleep metrics to model circadian changes to mental acuity. Participant compliance in using the wearable throughout the week and responding to the CogGauge assessments was 80%. Specific biases were identified in temporal metrics across mobile devices and operating systems and were excluded from the mental acuity metric development. Individualized prediction of mental acuity consistently outperformed group modeling. This effort indicates the feasibility of creating an individualized, mobile assessment and prediction of mental acuity, compatible with the majority of current mobile devices.

  5. Improved Flow Modeling in Transient Reactor Safety Analysis Computer Codes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Holowach, M.J.; Hochreiter, L.E.; Cheung, F.B.

    2002-01-01

    A method of accounting for fluid-to-fluid shear in between calculational cells over a wide range of flow conditions envisioned in reactor safety studies has been developed such that it may be easily implemented into a computer code such as COBRA-TF for more detailed subchannel analysis. At a given nodal height in the calculational model, equivalent hydraulic diameters are determined for each specific calculational cell using either laminar or turbulent velocity profiles. The velocity profile may be determined from a separate CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) analysis, experimental data, or existing semi-empirical relationships. The equivalent hydraulic diameter is then applied to the wall drag force calculation so as to determine the appropriate equivalent fluid-to-fluid shear caused by the wall for each cell based on the input velocity profile. This means of assigning the shear to a specific cell is independent of the actual wetted perimeter and flow area for the calculational cell. The use of this equivalent hydraulic diameter for each cell within a calculational subchannel results in a representative velocity profile which can further increase the accuracy and detail of heat transfer and fluid flow modeling within the subchannel when utilizing a thermal hydraulics systems analysis computer code such as COBRA-TF. Utilizing COBRA-TF with the flow modeling enhancement results in increased accuracy for a coarse-mesh model without the significantly greater computational and time requirements of a full-scale 3D (three-dimensional) transient CFD calculation. (authors)

  6. Improving treatment outcome assessment in a mouse tuberculosis model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mourik, Bas C; Svensson, Robin J; de Knegt, Gerjo J; Bax, Hannelore I; Verbon, Annelies; Simonsson, Ulrika S H; de Steenwinkel, Jurriaan E M

    2018-04-09

    Preclinical treatment outcome evaluation of tuberculosis (TB) occurs primarily in mice. Current designs compare relapse rates of different regimens at selected time points, but lack information about the correlation between treatment length and treatment outcome, which is required to efficiently estimate a regimens' treatment-shortening potential. Therefore we developed a new approach. BALB/c mice were infected with a Mycobacterium tuberculosis Beijing genotype strain and were treated with rifapentine-pyrazinamide-isoniazid-ethambutol (R p ZHE), rifampicin-pyrazinamide-moxifloxacin-ethambutol (RZME) or rifampicin-pyrazinamide-moxifloxacin-isoniazid (RZMH). Treatment outcome was assessed in n = 3 mice after 9 different treatment lengths between 2-6 months. Next, we created a mathematical model that best fitted the observational data and used this for inter-regimen comparison. The observed data were best described by a sigmoidal E max model in favor over linear or conventional E max models. Estimating regimen-specific parameters showed significantly higher curative potentials for RZME and R p ZHE compared to RZMH. In conclusion, we provide a new design for treatment outcome evaluation in a mouse TB model, which (i) provides accurate tools for assessment of the relationship between treatment length and predicted cure, (ii) allows for efficient comparison between regimens and (iii) adheres to the reduction and refinement principles of laboratory animal use.

  7. Low- and high-volume of intensive endurance training significantly improves maximal oxygen uptake after 10-weeks of training in healthy men.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnt Erik Tjønna

    Full Text Available Regular exercise training improves maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max, but the optimal intensity and volume necessary to obtain maximal benefit remains to be defined. A growing body of evidence suggests that exercise training with low-volume but high-intensity may be a time-efficient means to achieve health benefits. In the present study, we measured changes in VO2max and traditional cardiovascular risk factors after a 10 wk. training protocol that involved three weekly high-intensity interval sessions. One group followed a protocol which consisted of 4×4 min at 90% of maximal heart rate (HRmax interspersed with 3 min active recovery at 70% HRmax (4-AIT, the other group performed a single bout protocol that consisted of 1×4 min at 90% HRmax (1-AIT. Twenty-six inactive but otherwise healthy overweight men (BMI: 25-30, age: 35-45 y were randomized to either 1-AIT (n = 11 or 4-AIT (n = 13. After training, VO2max increased by 10% (∼5.0 mL⋅kg(-1⋅min(-1 and 13% (∼6.5 mL⋅kg(-1⋅min(-1 after 1-AIT and 4-AIT, respectively (group difference, p = 0.08. Oxygen cost during running at a sub-maximal workload was reduced by 14% and 13% after 1-AIT and 4-AIT, respectively. Systolic blood pressure decreased by 7.1 and 2.6 mmHg after 1-AIT and 4-AIT respectively, while diastolic pressure decreased by 7.7 and 6.1 mmHg (group difference, p = 0.84. Both groups had a similar ∼5% decrease in fasting glucose. Body fat, total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and ox-LDL cholesterol only were significantly reduced after 4-AIT. Our data suggest that a single bout of AIT performed three times per week may be a time-efficient strategy to improve VO2max and reduce blood pressure and fasting glucose in previously inactive but otherwise healthy middle-aged individuals. The 1-AIT type of exercise training may be readily implemented as part of activities of daily living and could easily be translated into programs designed to improve public health

  8. Significant Improvement of Puncture Accuracy and Fluoroscopy Reduction in Percutaneous Transforaminal Endoscopic Discectomy With Novel Lumbar Location System: Preliminary Report of Prospective Hello Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Guoxin; Guan, Xiaofei; Zhang, Hailong; Wu, Xinbo; Gu, Xin; Gu, Guangfei; Fan, Yunshan; He, Shisheng

    2015-12-01

    Prospective nonrandomized control study.The study aimed to investigate the implication of the HE's Lumbar LOcation (HELLO) system in improving the puncture accuracy and reducing fluoroscopy in percutaneous transforaminal endoscopic discectomy (PTED).Percutaneous transforaminal endoscopic discectomy is one of the most popular minimally invasive spine surgeries that heavily depend on repeated fluoroscopy. Increased fluoroscopy will induce higher radiation exposure to surgeons and patients. Accurate puncture in PTED can be achieved by accurate preoperative location and definite trajectory.The HELLO system mainly consists of self-made surface locator and puncture-assisted device. The surface locator was used to identify the exact puncture target and the puncture-assisted device was used to optimize the puncture trajectory. Patients who had single L4/5 or L5/S1 lumbar intervertebral disc herniation and underwent PTED were included the study. Patients receiving the HELLO system were assigned in Group A, and those taking conventional method were assigned in Group B. Study primary endpoint was puncture times and fluoroscopic times, and the secondary endpoint was location time and operation time.A total of 62 patients who received PTED were included in this study. The average age was 45.35 ± 8.70 years in Group A and 46.61 ± 7.84 years in Group B (P = 0.552). There were no significant differences in gender, body mass index, conservative time, and surgical segment between the 2 groups (P > 0.05). The puncture times were 1.19 ± 0.48 in Group A and 6.03 ± 1.87 in Group B (P HELLO system is accurate preoperative location and definite trajectory. This preliminary report indicated that the HELLO system significantly improves the puncture accuracy of PTED and reduces the fluoroscopic times, preoperative location time, as well as operation time. (ChiCTR-ICR-15006730).

  9. An Inventory Controlled Supply Chain Model Based on Improved BP Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei He

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Inventory control is a key factor for reducing supply chain cost and increasing customer satisfaction. However, prediction of inventory level is a challenging task for managers. As one of the widely used techniques for inventory control, standard BP neural network has such problems as low convergence rate and poor prediction accuracy. Aiming at these problems, a new fast convergent BP neural network model for predicting inventory level is developed in this paper. By adding an error offset, this paper deduces the new chain propagation rule and the new weight formula. This paper also applies the improved BP neural network model to predict the inventory level of an automotive parts company. The results show that the improved algorithm not only significantly exceeds the standard algorithm but also outperforms some other improved BP algorithms both on convergence rate and prediction accuracy.

  10. Autism-like behavior in the BTBR mouse model of autism is improved by propofol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Yulong; Wang, Lian; Xiao, Rui; Li, Xin; He, Xie; Gao, Junwei; Xu, Haiwei; Fan, Xiaotang

    2017-05-15

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder that is characterized by symptoms of impaired social interactions, restricted interests and repetitive behaviors. Recent studies in humans and animal-models suggest that reduced GABAergic neurotransmission in the brain may underlie autism-related behavioral symptoms. It has been shown that propofol, a commonly used anesthetic, facilitates γ-aminobutyric acid-mediated inhibitory synaptic transmission. The present study investigated whether propofol improved autistic phenotypes in BTBR T + Itpr3tf/J (BTBR) mice, a model of idiopathic autism. We found that i.p. injection of propofol in BTBR mice significantly improved aspects of social approach and repetitive behaviors without affecting reciprocal social interactions and without any detrimental effects in C57BL/6J mice. The ability of propofol to improve autistic phenotypes in BTBR mice through GABAergic neurotransmission suggests a potential pharmacological target for interventions to treat symptoms of autism. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Reducing Health Care Costs and Improving Clinical Outcomes Using an Improved Asheville Project Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barry A. Bunting

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available This study was designed to add to the body of knowledge gained through the original Asheville Project studies, and to address some of the limitations of the earlier studies. Scalability. Since the original Asheville Project publications there have been some successful replications, however, there is a need to broaden the geographic scope and increase the size of the study population. Study Design. Previous studies were limited to pre-post, self-as-control design. We added a control group. Model improvement. We were able to incorporate an electronic record of care. This allows incorporation of medical and prescription claims, ease of documentation, improved data capture, reporting, standardization of care, identification of deficiencies in care, and communication with other health care providers. This enhancement may be worthy of more comment than we devoted to it , however, we didn’t want to detract from the main goal of the study, and we wanted to avoid any hint of commercialization on the part of the organization that provided the electronic record. Relevance to profession. We sincerely hope the relevance goes beyond the profession of pharmacy and that it reinforces the message that the profession of pharmacy offers real solutions to rising health care costs in the U.S.   Type: Original Research

  12. Improved SVR Model for Multi-Layer Buildup Factor Calculation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trontl, K.; Pevec, D.; Smuc, T.

    2006-01-01

    The accuracy of point kernel method applied in gamma ray dose rate calculations in shielding design and radiation safety analysis is limited by the accuracy of buildup factors used in calculations. Although buildup factors for single-layer shields are well defined and understood, buildup factors for stratified shields represent a complex physical problem that is hard to express in mathematical terms. The traditional approach for expressing buildup factors of multi-layer shields is through semi-empirical formulas obtained by fitting the results of transport theory or Monte Carlo calculations. Such an approach requires an ad-hoc definition of the fitting function and often results with numerous and usually inadequately explained and defined correction factors added to the final empirical formula. Even more, finally obtained formulas are generally limited to a small number of predefined combinations of materials within relatively small range of gamma ray energies and shield thicknesses. Recently, a new approach has been suggested by the authors involving one of machine learning techniques called Support Vector Machines, i.e., Support Vector Regression (SVR). Preliminary investigations performed for double-layer shields revealed great potential of the method, but also pointed out some drawbacks of the developed model, mostly related to the selection of one of the parameters describing the problem (material atomic number), and the method in which the model was designed to evolve during the learning process. It is the aim of this paper to introduce a new parameter (single material buildup factor) that is to replace the existing material atomic number as an input parameter. The comparison of two models generated by different input parameters has been performed. The second goal is to improve the evolution process of learning, i.e., the experimental computational procedure that provides a framework for automated construction of complex regression models of predefined

  13. Does model performance improve with complexity? A case study with three hydrological models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orth, Rene; Staudinger, Maria; Seneviratne, Sonia I.; Seibert, Jan; Zappa, Massimiliano

    2015-04-01

    In recent decades considerable progress has been made in climate model development. Following the massive increase in computational power, models became more sophisticated. At the same time also simple conceptual models have advanced. In this study we validate and compare three hydrological models of different complexity to investigate whether their performance varies accordingly. For this purpose we use runoff and also soil moisture measurements, which allow a truly independent validation, from several sites across Switzerland. The models are calibrated in similar ways with the same runoff data. Our results show that the more complex models HBV and PREVAH outperform the simple water balance model (SWBM) in case of runoff but not for soil moisture. Furthermore the most sophisticated PREVAH model shows an added value compared to the HBV model only in case of soil moisture. Focusing on extreme events we find generally improved performance of the SWBM during drought conditions and degraded agreement with observations during wet extremes. For the more complex models we find the opposite behavior, probably because they were primarily developed for prediction of runoff extremes. As expected given their complexity, HBV and PREVAH have more problems with over-fitting. All models show a tendency towards better performance in lower altitudes as opposed to (pre-) alpine sites. The results vary considerably across the investigated sites. In contrast, the different metrics we consider to estimate the agreement between models and observations lead to similar conclusions, indicating that the performance of the considered models is similar at different time scales as well as for anomalies and long-term means. We conclude that added complexity does not necessarily lead to improved performance of hydrological models, and that performance can vary greatly depending on the considered hydrological variable (e.g. runoff vs. soil moisture) or hydrological conditions (floods vs. droughts).

  14. COUNTERCURRENT FLOW LIMITATION EXPERIMENTS AND MODELING FOR IMPROVED REACTOR SAFETY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vierow, Karen

    2008-01-01

    This project is investigating countercurrent flow and 'flooding' phenomena in light water reactor systems to improve reactor safety of current and future reactors. To better understand the occurrence of flooding in the surge line geometry of a PWR, two experimental programs were performed. In the first, a test facility with an acrylic test section provided visual data on flooding for air-water systems in large diameter tubes. This test section also allowed for development of techniques to form an annular liquid film along the inner surface of the 'surge line' and other techniques which would be difficult to verify in an opaque test section. Based on experiences in the air-water testing and the improved understanding of flooding phenomena, two series of tests were conducted in a large-diameter, stainless steel test section. Air-water test results and steam-water test results were directly compared to note the effect of condensation. Results indicate that, as for smaller diameter tubes, the flooding phenomena is predominantly driven by the hydrodynamics. Tests with the test sections inclined were attempted but the annular film was easily disrupted. A theoretical model for steam venting from inclined tubes is proposed herein and validated against air-water data. Empirical correlations were proposed for air-water and steam-water data. Methods for developing analytical models of the air-water and steam-water systems are discussed, as is the applicability of the current data to the surge line conditions. This report documents the project results from July 1, 2005 through June 30, 2008

  15. COUNTERCURRENT FLOW LIMITATION EXPERIMENTS AND MODELING FOR IMPROVED REACTOR SAFETY

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vierow, Karen

    2008-09-26

    This project is investigating countercurrent flow and “flooding” phenomena in light water reactor systems to improve reactor safety of current and future reactors. To better understand the occurrence of flooding in the surge line geometry of a PWR, two experimental programs were performed. In the first, a test facility with an acrylic test section provided visual data on flooding for air-water systems in large diameter tubes. This test section also allowed for development of techniques to form an annular liquid film along the inner surface of the “surge line” and other techniques which would be difficult to verify in an opaque test section. Based on experiences in the air-water testing and the improved understanding of flooding phenomena, two series of tests were conducted in a large-diameter, stainless steel test section. Air-water test results and steam-water test results were directly compared to note the effect of condensation. Results indicate that, as for smaller diameter tubes, the flooding phenomena is predominantly driven by the hydrodynamics. Tests with the test sections inclined were attempted but the annular film was easily disrupted. A theoretical model for steam venting from inclined tubes is proposed herein and validated against air-water data. Empirical correlations were proposed for air-water and steam-water data. Methods for developing analytical models of the air-water and steam-water systems are discussed, as is the applicability of the current data to the surge line conditions. This report documents the project results from July 1, 2005 through June 30, 2008.

  16. Modeling of Glass Making Processes for Improved Efficiency

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thomas P. Seward III

    2003-03-31

    The overall goal of this project was to develop a high-temperature melt properties database with sufficient reliability to allow mathematical modeling of glass melting and forming processes for improved product quality, improved efficiency and lessened environmental impact. It was initiated by the United States glass industry through the NSF Industry/University Center for Glass Research (CGR) at Alfred University [1]. Because of their important commercial value, six different types/families of glass were studied: container, float, fiberglass (E- and wool-types), low-expansion borosilicate, and color TV panel glasses. CGR member companies supplied production-quality glass from all six families upon which we measured, as a function of temperature in the molten state, density, surface tension, viscosity, electrical resistivity, infrared transmittance (to determine high temperature radiative conductivity), non-Newtonian flow behavior, and oxygen partial pres sure. With CGR cost sharing, we also studied gas solubility and diffusivity in each of these glasses. Because knowledge of the compositional dependencies of melt viscosity and electrical resistivity are extremely important for glass melting furnace design and operation, these properties were studied more fully. Composition variations were statistically designed for all six types/families of glass. About 140 different glasses were then melted on a laboratory scale and their viscosity and electrical resistivity measured as a function of temperature. The measurements were completed in February 2003 and are reported on here. The next steps will be (1) to statistically analyze the compositional dependencies of viscosity and electrical resistivity and develop composition-property response surfaces, (2) submit all the data to CGR member companies to evaluate the usefulness in their models, and (3) publish the results in technical journals and most likely in book form.

  17. SIFT Based Vein Recognition Models: Analysis and Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guoqing Wang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Scale-Invariant Feature Transform (SIFT is being investigated more and more to realize a less-constrained hand vein recognition system. Contrast enhancement (CE, compensating for deficient dynamic range aspects, is a must for SIFT based framework to improve the performance. However, evidence of negative influence on SIFT matching brought by CE is analysed by our experiments. We bring evidence that the number of extracted keypoints resulting by gradient based detectors increases greatly with different CE methods, while on the other hand the matching result of extracted invariant descriptors is negatively influenced in terms of Precision-Recall (PR and Equal Error Rate (EER. Rigorous experiments with state-of-the-art and other CE adopted in published SIFT based hand vein recognition system demonstrate the influence. What is more, an improved SIFT model by importing the kernel of RootSIFT and Mirror Match Strategy into a unified framework is proposed to make use of the positive keypoints change and make up for the negative influence brought by CE.

  18. Ga doping to significantly improve the performance of all-electrochemically fabricated Cu2O-ZnO nanowire solar cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Jiale; Guo, Chunxian; Li, Chang Ming

    2013-10-14

    Cu2O-ZnO nanowire solar cells have the advantages of light weight and high stability while possessing a large active material interface for potentially high power conversion efficiencies. In particular, electrochemically fabricated devices have attracted increasing attention due to their low-cost and simple fabrication process. However, most of them are "partially" electrochemically fabricated by vacuum deposition onto a preexisting ZnO layer. There are a few examples made via all-electrochemical deposition, but the power conversion efficiency (PCE) is too low (0.13%) for practical applications. Herein we use an all-electrochemical approach to directly deposit ZnO NWs onto FTO followed by electrochemical doping with Ga to produce a heterojunction solar cell. The Ga doping greatly improves light utilization while significantly suppressing charge recombination. A 2.5% molar ratio of Ga to ZnO delivers the best performance with a short circuit current density (Jsc) of 3.24 mA cm(-2) and a PCE of 0.25%, which is significantly higher than in the absence of Ga doping. Moreover, the use of electrochemically deposited ZnO powder-buffered Cu2O from a mixed Cu(2+)-ZnO powder solution and oxygen plasma treatment could reduce the density of defect sites in the heterojunction interface to further increase Jsc and PCE to 4.86 mA cm(-2) and 0.34%, respectively, resulting in the highest power conversion efficiency among all-electrochemically fabricated Cu2O-ZnO NW solar cells. This approach offers great potential for a low-cost solution-based process to mass-manufacture high-performance Cu2O-ZnO NW solar cells.

  19. Efficient removal of anionic dye (Congo red) by dialdehyde microfibrillated cellulose/chitosan composite film with significantly improved stability in dye solution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Xuejing; Li, Xiaoxiao; Li, Jinyang; Wang, Liwei; Jin, Wenjing; Liu, Jie; Pei, Ying; Tang, Keyong

    2018-02-01

    A novel composite film with efficient removal of anionic dye (Congo red) was developed using chitosan and dialdehyde microfibrillated cellulose nano fibrils. Microfibrillated cellulose with three dimensional network structure was prepared from microcrystalline cellulose by high-pressure homogenization. Then it was surface modified by periodate to prepare dialdehyde microfibrillated cellulose (DAMFC). DAMFC/chitosan composite films were prepared by solvent-casting. During the compounding of DAMFC with chitosan, a Schiff base was formed through the reaction between the aldehyde groups of DAMFC and amino groups of chitosan. A giant network structure was therefore formed. The addition of DAMFC resulted in remarkably increased adsorption capacity of the chitosan material as well as drastically improved stability in dye solution. The adsorption performance was investigated with respect to pH, temperature, contact time, and the initial dye concentration. The possible adsorption mechanism was proposed. Various isotherm models have been used to fit the data, and kinetic parameters were evaluated. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Cognitive cooperation groups mediated by computers and internet present significant improvement of cognitive status in older adults with memory complaints: a controlled prospective study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo de Rosso Krug

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Objective To estimate the effect of participating in cognitive cooperation groups, mediated by computers and the internet, on the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE percent variation of outpatients with memory complaints attending two memory clinics. Methods A prospective controlled intervention study carried out from 2006 to 2013 with 293 elders. The intervention group (n = 160 attended a cognitive cooperation group (20 sessions of 1.5 hours each. The control group (n = 133 received routine medical care. Outcome was the percent variation in the MMSE. Control variables included gender, age, marital status, schooling, hypertension, diabetes, dyslipidaemia, hypothyroidism, depression, vascular diseases, polymedication, use of benzodiazepines, exposure to tobacco, sedentary lifestyle, obesity and functional capacity. The final model was obtained by multivariate linear regression. Results The intervention group obtained an independent positive variation of 24.39% (CI 95% = 14.86/33.91 in the MMSE compared to the control group. Conclusion The results suggested that cognitive cooperation groups, mediated by computers and the internet, are associated with cognitive status improvement of older adults in memory clinics.

  1. Implications of Improved Higgs Mass Calculations for Supersymmetric Models

    CERN Document Server

    Buchmueller, O.; Ellis, J.; Hahn, T.; Heinemeyer, S.; Hollik, W.; Marrouche, J.; Olive, K.A.; Rzehak, H.; de Vries, K.J.; Weiglein, G.

    2014-01-01

    We discuss the allowed parameter spaces of supersymmetric scenarios in light of improved Higgs mass predictions provided by FeynHiggs 2.10.0. The Higgs mass predictions combine Feynman-diagrammatic results with a resummation of leading and subleading logarithmic corrections from the stop/top sector, which yield a significant improvement in the region of large stop masses. Scans in the pMSSM parameter space show that, for given values of the soft supersymmetry-breaking parameters, the new logarithmic contributions beyond the two-loop order implemented in FeynHiggs tend to give larger values of the light CP-even Higgs mass, M_h, in the region of large stop masses than previous predictions that were based on a fixed-order Feynman-diagrammatic result, though the differences are generally consistent with the previous estimates of theoretical uncertainties. We re-analyze the parameter spaces of the CMSSM, NUHM1 and NUHM2, taking into account also the constraints from CMS and LHCb measurements of B_s to \\mu+\\mu- and...

  2. Implications of improved Higgs mass calculations for supersymmetric models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buchmueller, O. [Imperial College, London (United Kingdom). High Energy Physics Group; Dolan, M.J. [SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Menlo Park, CA (United States). Theory Group; Ellis, J. [King' s College, London (United Kingdom). Theoretical Particle Physics and Cosmology Group; and others

    2014-03-15

    We discuss the allowed parameter spaces of supersymmetric scenarios in light of improved Higgs mass predictions provided by FeynHiggs 2.10.0. The Higgs mass predictions combine Feynman-diagrammatic results with a resummation of leading and subleading logarithmic corrections from the stop/top sector, which yield a significant improvement in the region of large stop masses. Scans in the pMSSM parameter space show that, for given values of the soft supersymmetry-breaking parameters, the new logarithmic contributions beyond the two-loop order implemented in FeynHiggs tend to give larger values of the light CP-even Higgs mass, M{sub h}, in the region of large stop masses than previous predictions that were based on a fixed-order Feynman-diagrammatic result, though the differences are generally consistent with the previous estimates of theoretical uncertainties. We re-analyze the parameter spaces of the CMSSM, NUHM1 and NUHM2, taking into account also the constraints from CMS and LHCb measurements of BR(B{sub s}→μ{sup +}μ{sup -}) and ATLAS searches for E{sub T} events using 20/fb of LHC data at 8 TeV. Within the CMSSM, the Higgs mass constraint disfavours tan β

  3. Implications of improved Higgs mass calculations for supersymmetric models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchmueller, O; Dolan, M J; Ellis, J; Hahn, T; Heinemeyer, S; Hollik, W; Marrouche, J; Olive, K A; Rzehak, H; de Vries, K J; Weiglein, G

    We discuss the allowed parameter spaces of supersymmetric scenarios in light of improved Higgs mass predictions provided by FeynHiggs 2.10.0. The Higgs mass predictions combine Feynman-diagrammatic results with a resummation of leading and subleading logarithmic corrections from the stop/top sector, which yield a significant improvement in the region of large stop masses. Scans in the pMSSM parameter space show that, for given values of the soft supersymmetry-breaking parameters, the new logarithmic contributions beyond the two-loop order implemented in FeynHiggs tend to give larger values of the light CP-even Higgs mass, [Formula: see text], in the region of large stop masses than previous predictions that were based on a fixed-order Feynman-diagrammatic result, though the differences are generally consistent with the previous estimates of theoretical uncertainties. We re-analyse the parameter spaces of the CMSSM, NUHM1 and NUHM2, taking into account also the constraints from CMS and LHCb measurements of [Formula: see text]and ATLAS searches for [Formula: see text] events using 20/fb of LHC data at 8 TeV. Within the CMSSM, the Higgs mass constraint disfavours [Formula: see text], though not in the NUHM1 or NUHM2.

  4. Implementing the Mother-Baby Model of Nursing Care Using Models and Quality Improvement Tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brockman, Vicki

    As family-centered care has become the expected standard, many facilities follow the mother-baby model, in which care is provided to both a woman and her newborn in the same room by the same nurse. My facility employed a traditional model of nursing care, which was not evidence-based or financially sustainable. After implementing the mother-baby model, we experienced an increase in exclusive breastfeeding rates at hospital discharge, increased patient satisfaction, improved staff productivity and decreased salary costs, all while the number of births increased. Our change was successful because it was guided by the use of quality improvement tools, change theory and evidence-based practice models. © 2015 AWHONN.

  5. Speech sound discrimination training improves auditory cortex responses in a rat model of autism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Crystal T Engineer

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Children with autism often have language impairments and degraded cortical responses to speech. Extensive behavioral interventions can improve language outcomes and cortical responses. Prenatal exposure to the antiepileptic drug valproic acid (VPA increases the risk for autism and language impairment. Prenatal exposure to VPA also causes weaker and delayed auditory cortex responses in rats. In this study, we document speech sound discrimination ability in VPA exposed rats and document the effect of extensive speech training on auditory cortex responses. VPA exposed rats were significantly impaired at consonant, but not vowel, discrimination. Extensive speech training resulted in both stronger and faster anterior auditory field responses compared to untrained VPA exposed rats, and restored responses to control levels. This neural response improvement generalized to non-trained sounds. The rodent VPA model of autism may be used to improve the understanding of speech processing in autism and contribute to improving language outcomes.

  6. Multi-physics Modeling for Improving Li-Ion Battery Safety; NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pesaran, A.; Kim, G.; Santhanagopalan, S.; Yang, C.

    2015-04-21

    Battery performance, cost, and safety must be further improved for larger market share of HEVs/PEVs and penetration into the grid. Significant investment is being made to develop new materials, fine tune existing ones, improve cell and pack designs, and enhance manufacturing processes to increase performance, reduce cost, and make batteries safer. Modeling, simulation, and design tools can play an important role by providing insight on how to address issues, reducing the number of build-test-break prototypes, and accelerating the development cycle of generating products.

  7. Improvement of Fabry Disease-Related Gastrointestinal Symptoms in a Significant Proportion of Female Patients Treated with Agalsidase Beta: Data from the Fabry Registry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilcox, William R; Feldt-Rasmussen, Ulla; Martins, Ana Maria; Ortiz, Alberto; Lemay, Roberta M; Jovanovic, Ana; Germain, Dominique P; Varas, Carmen; Nicholls, Katherine; Weidemann, Frank; Hopkin, Robert J

    2018-01-01

    Fabry disease, an X-linked inherited lysosomal storage disorder, is caused by mutations in the gene encoding α-galactosidase, GLA. In patients with Fabry disease, glycosphingolipids accumulate in various cell types, triggering a range of cellular and tissue responses that result in a wide spectrum of organ involvement. Although variable, gastrointestinal symptoms are among the most common and significant early clinical manifestations; they tend to persist into adulthood if left untreated. To further understand the effects of sustained enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) with agalsidase beta on gastrointestinal symptoms in heterozygotes, a data analysis of female patients enrolled in the Fabry Registry was conducted. To be included, females of any age must have received agalsidase beta (average dose 1.0 mg/kg every 2 weeks) for at least 2.5 years. Measured outcomes were self-reported gastrointestinal symptoms (abdominal pain, diarrhea). Outcomes at baseline and last follow-up, and their change from baseline to last follow-up, were assessed. Relevant data were available for 168 female patients. Mean age at the start of ERT was 43 years and mean treatment duration 5.7 years. Baseline pre-treatment abdominal pain was reported by 45% of females and diarrhea by 39%. At last follow-up, 31% reported abdominal pain (p Fabry Registry analysis suggest that while on sustained treatment with agalsidase beta (1.0 mg/kg every 2 weeks), both abdominal pain and diarrhea improved in many female patients with Fabry disease.

  8. Physiologically-based, predictive analytics using the heart-rate-to-Systolic-Ratio significantly improves the timeliness and accuracy of sepsis prediction compared to SIRS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danner, Omar K; Hendren, Sandra; Santiago, Ethel; Nye, Brittany; Abraham, Prasad

    2017-04-01

    Enhancing the efficiency of diagnosis and treatment of severe sepsis by using physiologically-based, predictive analytical strategies has not been fully explored. We hypothesize assessment of heart-rate-to-systolic-ratio significantly increases the timeliness and accuracy of sepsis prediction after emergency department (ED) presentation. We evaluated the records of 53,313 ED patients from a large, urban teaching hospital between January and June 2015. The HR-to-systolic ratio was compared to SIRS criteria for sepsis prediction. There were 884 patients with discharge diagnoses of sepsis, severe sepsis, and/or septic shock. Variations in three presenting variables, heart rate, systolic BP and temperature were determined to be primary early predictors of sepsis with a 74% (654/884) accuracy compared to 34% (304/884) using SIRS criteria (p analytics improved the accuracy and expediency of sepsis identification via detection of variations in HR-to-systolic ratio. This approach may lead to earlier sepsis workup and life-saving interventions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. 3-D a Priori Model Constraints and Uncertainties for Improving Seismic Event Location

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flanagan, M. P.; Myers, S. C.; Pasyanos, M. E.; Schultz, C. A.

    2001-12-01

    We investigate our ability to improve seismic event location in the Middle East, North Africa, and Western Eurasia (MENAWE) by using an a priori 3-D velocity model for the crust and upper mantle in lieu of more commonly used 1-D Earth models. We develop our composite velocity model based on published literature: a global sediment thickness map, a regionalized crustal model based on geology and tectonics, and an upper mantle model [Pasyanos et al., 2001]. We test a variety of mantle velocity models developed either from teleseismic travel-times [Gudmundsson and Sambridge, 1998] or from geodynamic estimates of temperature, pressure, and composition [Nataf and Ricard, 1996]. Using a 3-D finite difference technique we compute travel times through the model and produce station-specific correction surfaces relative to iasp91. We then use these model-based correction surfaces as additional constraints in our event location algorithm to relocate a set of ground truth (GT) events (the 1991 Racha aftershock sequence). Myers and Schult [2000], using empirical kriged correction surfaces and a 1-D velocity model applied to a test network, reduced the average location bias of this aftershock sequence from 42 km (using a 1-D velocity model alone) to 13 km. With our model-based correction surfaces we reduce this bias from 42 to 26 km using the travel-time mantle model and from 42 to 10 km using the geodynamic mantle model. This is a significant result showing the power of a priori 3-D models to improve location to almost the same degree as empirical corrections, within the GT uncertainty bounds. This test relocation samples only one part of our MENAWE model, and we are continuing to test the model in other areas using geographically diverse GT events. A larger data set of GT0-GT10 events is being collected and will be used to further evaluate the effectiveness of the a priori model for improving event location accuracy. We also plan to explore a variety of validation techniques (e

  10. DEVELOPMENT OF A NOVEL RADIATIVELY/CONDUCTIVELY STABILIZED BURNER FOR SIGNIFICANT REDUCTION OF NOx EMISSIONS AND FOR ADVANCING THE MODELING AND UNDERSTANDING OF PULVERIZED COAL COMBUSTION AND EMISSIONS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Noam Lior; Stuart W. Churchill

    2003-10-01

    The primary objective of the proposed study was the study and analysis of, and design recommendations for, a novel radiatively-conductively stabilized combustion (RCSC) process for pulverized coal, which, based on our prior studies with both fluid fuels and pulverized coal, holds a high promise to reduce NO{sub x} production significantly. We have primarily engaged in continuing and improving our process modeling and analysis, obtained a large amount of quantitative information about the effects of the major parameters on NO{sub x} production, conducted an extensive exergy analysis of the process, evaluated the practicalities of employing the Radiatively-Conductively Stabilized Combustor (RCSC) to large power and heat plants, and improved the experimental facility. Prior experimental work has proven the feasibility of the combustor, but slagging during coal combustion was observed and should be dealt with. The primary outcomes and conclusions from the study are: (1) we developed a model and computer program that represents the pulverized coal combustion in the RCSC, (2) the model predicts that NO{sub x} emissions can be reduced by a number of methods, detailed in the report. (3) the exergy analysis points out at least a couple of possible ways to improve the exergetic efficiency in this combustor: increasing the effectiveness of thermal feedback, and adjusting the combustor mixture exit location, (4) because of the low coal flow rates necessitated in this study to obtain complete combustion in the burner, the size of a burner operating under the considered conditions would have to be up to an order of magnitude, larger than comparable commercial burners, but different flow configurations of the RCSC can yield higher feed rates and smaller dimensions, and should be investigated. Related to this contract, eleven papers were published in journals and conference proceedings, and ten invited presentations were given at university and research institutions, as well as at

  11. Improving the simulation of convective dust storms in regional-to-global models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foroutan, Hosein; Pleim, Jonathan E.

    2017-09-01

    Convective dust storms have significant impacts on atmospheric conditions and air quality and are a major source of dust uplift in summertime. However, regional-to-global models generally do not accurately simulate these storms, a limitation that can be attributed to (1) using a single mean value for wind speed per grid box, i.e., not accounting for subgrid wind variability and (2) using convective parametrizations that poorly simulate cold pool outflows. This study aims to improve the simulation of convective dust storms by tackling these two issues. Specifically, we incorporate a probability distribution function for surface wind in each grid box to account for subgrid wind variability due to dry and moist convection. Furthermore, we use lightning assimilation to increase the accuracy of the convective parameterization and simulated cold pool outflows. This updated model framework is used to simulate a massive convective dust storm that hit Phoenix, AZ, on 6 July 2011. The results show that lightning assimilation provides a more realistic simulation of precipitation features, including timing and location, and the resulting cold pool outflows that generated the dust storm. When those results are combined with a dust model that accounts for subgrid wind variability, the prediction of dust uplift and concentrations are considerably improved compared to the default model results. This modeling framework could potentially improve the simulation of convective dust storms in global models, regional climate simulations, and retrospective air quality studies.

  12. An Improved Test Selection Optimization Model Based on Fault Ambiguity Group Isolation and Chaotic Discrete PSO

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaofeng Lv

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Sensor data-based test selection optimization is the basis for designing a test work, which ensures that the system is tested under the constraint of the conventional indexes such as fault detection rate (FDR and fault isolation rate (FIR. From the perspective of equipment maintenance support, the ambiguity isolation has a significant effect on the result of test selection. In this paper, an improved test selection optimization model is proposed by considering the ambiguity degree of fault isolation. In the new model, the fault test dependency matrix is adopted to model the correlation between the system fault and the test group. The objective function of the proposed model is minimizing the test cost with the constraint of FDR and FIR. The improved chaotic discrete particle swarm optimization (PSO algorithm is adopted to solve the improved test selection optimization model. The new test selection optimization model is more consistent with real complicated engineering systems. The experimental result verifies the effectiveness of the proposed method.

  13. How Interplanetary Scintillation Data Can Improve Modeling of Coronal Mass Ejection Propagation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taktakishvili, A.; Mays, M. L.; Manoharan, P. K.; Rastaetter, L.; Kuznetsova, M. M.

    2017-12-01

    Coronal mass ejections (CMEs) can have a significant impact on the Earth's magnetosphere-ionosphere system and cause widespread anomalies for satellites from geosynchronous to low-Earth orbit and produce effects such as geomagnetically induced currents. At the NASA/GSFC Community Coordinated Modeling Center we have been using ensemble modeling of CMEs since 2012. In this presnetation we demonstrate that using of interplanetary scintillation (IPS) observations from the Ooty Radio Telescope facility in India can help to track CME propagaion and improve ensemble forecasting of CMEs. The observations of the solar wind density and velocity using IPS from hundreds of distant sources in ensemble modeling of CMEs can be a game-changing improvement of the current state of the art in CME forecasting.

  14. Improved spring model-based collaborative indoor visible light positioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Zhijie; Zhang, WeiNan; Zhou, GuoFu

    2016-06-01

    Gaining accuracy with indoor positioning of individuals is important as many location-based services rely on the user's current position to provide them with useful services. Many researchers have studied indoor positioning techniques based on WiFi and Bluetooth. However, they have disadvantages such as low accuracy or high cost. In this paper, we propose an indoor positioning system in which visible light radiated from light-emitting diodes is used to locate the position of receivers. Compared with existing methods using light-emitting diode light, we present a high-precision and simple implementation collaborative indoor visible light positioning system based on an improved spring model. We first estimate coordinate position information using the visible light positioning system, and then use the spring model to correct positioning errors. The system can be employed easily because it does not require additional sensors and the occlusion problem of visible light would be alleviated. We also describe simulation experiments, which confirm the feasibility of our proposed method.

  15. Improvement on The Ellis and Roberts Viability Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guoyan Zhou

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available With data sets of germination percent and storage time of seed lot of wheat and sorghum stored at three different storage temperature(t, °C with three different water content (m, % of seeds, together with data set of buckwheat and lettuce reported in literatures, the possibility that seed survival curve were transformed into line by survival proportion and the relationship that logarithm of average viability period (logp50 and standard deviation of seed death distribution in time (δwith t, m and interaction between t and m were analysed. Result indicated that survival proportion transformed seed survival curve to line were much easier than the probability adopted by Ellis and Roberts, and the most important factor affecting logp50 and δ of seed lot was interaction between t and m. Thus, Ellis and Roberts viability model were suggested to be improved as Ki=Vi-p/10K-CWT (t×m to predict longevity of seed lot with initial germination percent unknown, a new model of Gi/G0=A-P/10K-CWT(t×m was constructed to predict longevity of seed lot with initial germination percent already known.

  16. A non-traditional model of the metabolic syndrome: the adaptive significance of insulin resistance in fasting-adapted seals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorian S Houser

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Insulin resistance in modern society is perceived as a pathological consequence of excess energy consumption and reduced physical activity. Its presence in relation to the development of cardiovascular risk factors has been termed the metabolic syndrome, which produces increased mortality and morbidity and which is rapidly increasing in human populations. Ironically, insulin resistance likely evolved to assist animals during food shortages by increasing the availability of endogenous lipid for catabolism while protecting protein from use in gluconeogenesis and eventual oxidation. Some species that incorporate fasting as a predictable component of their life history demonstrate physiological traits similar to the metabolic syndrome during prolonged fasts. One such species is the northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris, which fasts from food and water for periods of up to three months. During this time, ~90% of the seals metabolic demands are met through fat oxidation and circulating non-esterified fatty acids are high (0.7-3.2 mM. All life history stages of elephant seal studied to date demonstrate insulin resistance and fasting hyperglycemia as well as variations in hormones and adipocytokines that reflect the metabolic syndrome to some degree. Elephant seals demonstrate some intriguing adaptations with the potential for medical advancement; for example, ketosis is negligible despite significant and prolonged fatty acid oxidation and investigation of this feature might provide insight into the treatment of diabetic ketoacidosis. The parallels to the metabolic syndrome are likely reflected to varying degrees in other marine mammals, most of which evolved on diets high in lipid and protein content but essentially devoid of carbohydrate. Utilization of these natural models of insulin resistance may further our understanding of the pathophysiology of the metabolic syndrome in humans and better assist the development of preventative measures

  17. A non-traditional model of the metabolic syndrome: the adaptive significance of insulin resistance in fasting-adapted seals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houser, Dorian S; Champagne, Cory D; Crocker, Daniel E

    2013-11-01

    Insulin resistance in modern society is perceived as a pathological consequence of excess energy consumption and reduced physical activity. Its presence in relation to the development of cardiovascular risk factors has been termed the metabolic syndrome, which produces increased mortality and morbidity and which is rapidly increasing in human populations. Ironically, insulin resistance likely evolved to assist animals during food shortages by increasing the availability of endogenous lipid for catabolism while protecting protein from use in gluconeogenesis and eventual oxidation. Some species that incorporate fasting as a predictable component of their life history demonstrate physiological traits similar to the metabolic syndrome during prolonged fasts. One such species is the northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris), which fasts from food and water for periods of up to 4 months. During this time, ∼90% of the seals metabolic demands are met through fat oxidation and circulating non-esterified fatty acids are high (0.7-3.2 mM). All life history stages of elephant seal studied to date demonstrate insulin resistance and fasting hyperglycemia as well as variations in hormones and adipocytokines that reflect the metabolic syndrome to some degree. Elephant seals demonstrate some intriguing adaptations with the potential for medical advancement; for example, ketosis is negligible despite significant and prolonged fatty acid oxidation and investigation of this feature might provide insight into the treatment of diabetic ketoacidosis. The parallels to the metabolic syndrome are likely reflected to varying degrees in other marine mammals, most of which evolved on diets high in lipid and protein content but essentially devoid of carbohydrate. Utilization of these natural models of insulin resistance may further our understanding of the pathophysiology of the metabolic syndrome in humans and better assist the development of preventative measures and therapies.

  18. Improved data for integrated modeling of global environmental change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lotze-Campen, Hermann

    2011-12-01

    The assessment of global environmental changes, their impact on human societies, and possible management options requires large-scale, integrated modeling efforts. These models have to link biophysical with socio-economic processes, and they have to take spatial heterogeneity of environmental conditions into account. Land use change and freshwater use are two key research areas where spatial aggregation and the use of regional average numbers may lead to biased results. Useful insights can only be obtained if processes like economic globalization can be consistently linked to local environmental conditions and resource constraints (Lambin and Meyfroidt 2011). Spatially explicit modeling of environmental changes at the global scale has a long tradition in the natural sciences (Woodward et al 1995, Alcamo et al 1996, Leemans et al 1996). Socio-economic models with comparable spatial detail, e.g. on grid-based land use change, are much less common (Heistermann et al 2006), but are increasingly being developed (Popp et al 2011, Schneider et al 2011). Spatially explicit models require spatially explicit input data, which often constrains their development and application at the global scale. The amount and quality of available data on environmental conditions is growing fast—primarily due to improved earth observation methods. Moreover, systematic efforts for collecting and linking these data across sectors are on the way (www.earthobservations.org). This has, among others, also helped to provide consistent databases on different land cover and land use types (Erb et al 2007). However, spatially explicit data on specific anthropogenic driving forces of global environmental change are still scarce—also because these cannot be collected with satellites or other devices. The basic data on socio-economic driving forces, i.e. population density and wealth (measured as gross domestic product per capita), have been prepared for spatially explicit analyses (CIESIN, IFPRI

  19. Macrophytes may not contribute significantly to removal of nutrients, pharmaceuticals, and antibiotic resistance in model surface constructed wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardinal, Pascal; Anderson, Julie C; Carlson, Jules C; Low, Jennifer E; Challis, Jonathan K; Beattie, Sarah A; Bartel, Caitlin N; Elliott, Ashley D; Montero, Oscar F; Lokesh, Sheetal; Favreau, Alex; Kozlova, Tatiana A; Knapp, Charles W; Hanson, Mark L; Wong, Charles S

    2014-06-01

    Outdoor shallow wetland mesocosms, designed to simulate surface constructed wetlands to improve lagoon wastewater treatment, were used to assess the role of macrophytes in the dissipation of wastewater nutrients, selected pharmaceuticals, and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs). Specifically, mesocosms were established with or without populations of Typha spp. (cattails), Myriophyllum sibiricum (northern water milfoil), and Utricularia vulgaris (bladderwort). Following macrophyte establishment, mesocosms were seeded with ARG-bearing organisms from a local wastewater lagoon, and treated with a single pulse of artificial municipal wastewater with or without carbamazepine, clofibric acid, fluoxetine, and naproxen (each at 7.6μg/L), as well as sulfamethoxazole and sulfapyridine (each at 150μg/L). Rates of pharmaceutical dissipation over 28d ranged from 0.073 to 3.0d(-1), corresponding to half-lives of 0.23 to 9.4d. Based on calculated rate constants, observed dissipation rates were consistent with photodegradation driving clofibric acid, naproxen, sulfamethoxazole, and sulfapyridine removal, and with sorption also contributing to carbamazepine and fluoxetine loss. Of the seven gene determinants assayed, only two genes for both beta-lactam resistance (blaCTX and blaTEM) and sulfonamide resistance (sulI and sulII) were found in sufficient quantity for monitoring. Genes disappeared relatively rapidly from the water column, with half-lives ranging from 2.1 to 99d. In contrast, detected gene levels did not change in the sediment, with the exception of sulI, which increased after 28d in pharmaceutical-treated systems. These shallow wetland mesocosms were able to dissipate wastewater contaminants rapidly. However, no significant enhancement in removal of nutrients or pharmaceuticals was observed in mesocosms with extensive aquatic plant communities. This was likely due to three factors: first, use of naïve systems with an unchallenged capacity for nutrient assimilation and

  20. Habitat and spatial thinning improve the Maxent models performed with incomplete data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiedrzyński, Marcin; Zielińska, Katarzyna M.; Rewicz, Agnieszka; Kiedrzyńska, Edyta

    2017-06-01

    Species distribution models need adequate sets of data, particularly in the case of range-restricted species. The problem faced in the modeling of rare species is twofold: a small sample size and the occurrence of sampling biases. The present analysis combines spatial- and habitat-thinning approaches to improve maximum entropy models based on geographically incomplete data of relict and subendemic Festuca amethystina L. grass on Polish territory. The results show that models based on strongly incomplete historic data did not predict the occurrence of all important areas where the species was found in the following decades. However, the introduction of species-specific thinning allows for more precise prediction of the species range, i.e., the detection of suitable areas on a more local scale. The introduction of habitat thinning caused the diversity of important predictors in model to increase, but spatial thinning decreased the number of significant predictors and made interpretation easier. Additionally, a combination of thinning techniques allowed significant improvements to be made to the model predictions after the experimental addition of a lower number of localities to regions which had previously been poorly recognized. It can be concluded that in the case of incomplete data, the above corrections allow the true range of the species to be predicted after the discovery of a lower number and relatively dispersed new localities.

  1. Improving permafrost distribution modelling using feature selection algorithms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deluigi, Nicola; Lambiel, Christophe; Kanevski, Mikhail

    2016-04-01

    The availability of an increasing number of spatial data on the occurrence of mountain permafrost allows the employment of machine learning (ML) classification algorithms for modelling the distribution of the phenomenon. One of the major problems when dealing with high-dimensional dataset is the number of input features (variables) involved. Application of ML classification algorithms to this large number of variables leads to the risk of overfitting, with the consequence of a poor generalization/prediction. For this reason, applying feature selection (FS) techniques helps simplifying the amount of factors required and improves the knowledge on adopted features and their relation with the studied phenomenon. Moreover, taking away irrelevant or redundant variables from the dataset effectively improves the quality of the ML prediction. This research deals with a comparative analysis of permafrost distribution models supported by FS variable importance assessment. The input dataset (dimension = 20-25, 10 m spatial resolution) was constructed using landcover maps, climate data and DEM derived variables (altitude, aspect, slope, terrain curvature, solar radiation, etc.). It was completed with permafrost evidences (geophysical and thermal data and rock glacier inventories) that serve as training permafrost data. Used FS algorithms informed about variables that appeared less statistically important for permafrost presence/absence. Three different algorithms were compared: Information Gain (IG), Correlation-based Feature Selection (CFS) and Random Forest (RF). IG is a filter technique that evaluates the worth of a predictor by measuring the information gain with respect to the permafrost presence/absence. Conversely, CFS is a wrapper technique that evaluates the worth of a subset of predictors by considering the individual predictive ability of each variable along with the degree of redundancy between them. Finally, RF is a ML algorithm that performs FS as part of its

  2. A conceptual model to improve performance in virtual teams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shopee Dube

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: The vast improvement in communication technologies and sophisticated project management tools, methods and techniques has allowed geographically and culturally diverse groups to operate and function in a virtual environment. To succeed in this virtual environment where time and space are becoming increasingly irrelevant, organisations must define new ways of implementing initiatives. This virtual environment phenomenon has brought about the formation of virtual project teams that allow organisations to harness the skills and knowhow of the best resources, irrespective of their location. Objectives: The aim of this article was to investigate performance criteria and develop a conceptual model which can be applied to enhance the success of virtual project teams. There are no clear guidelines of the performance criteria in managing virtual project teams. Method: A qualitative research methodology was used in this article. The purpose of content analysis was to explore the literature to understand the concept of performance in virtual project teams and to summarise the findings of the literature reviewed. Results: The research identified a set of performance criteria for the virtual project teams as follows: leadership, trust, communication, team cooperation, reliability, motivation, comfort and social interaction. These were used to conceptualise the model. Conclusion: The conceptual model can be used in a holistic way to determine the overall performance of the virtual project team, but each factor can be analysed individually to determine the impact on the overall performance. The knowledge of performance criteria for virtual project teams could aid project managers in enhancing the success of these teams and taking a different approach to better manage and coordinate them.

  3. Solutions for Determining the Significance Region Using the Johnson-Neyman Type Procedure in Generalized Linear (Mixed) Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazar, Ann A.; Zerbe, Gary O.

    2011-01-01

    Researchers often compare the relationship between an outcome and covariate for two or more groups by evaluating whether the fitted regression curves differ significantly. When they do, researchers need to determine the "significance region," or the values of the covariate where the curves significantly differ. In analysis of covariance (ANCOVA),…

  4. Health Blief Model-based intervention to improve nutritional behavior among elderly women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iranagh, Jamileh Amirzadeh; Rahman, Hejar Abdul; Motalebi, Seyedeh Ameneh

    2016-06-01

    Nutrition is a determinant factor of health in elderly people. Independent living in elderly people can be maintained or enhanced by improvement of nutritional behavior. Hence, the present study was conducted to determine the impact of Health Belief Model (HBM)-based intervention on the nutritional behavior of elderly women. Cluster-random sampling was used to assess the sample of this clinical trial study. The participants of this study attended a 12-week nutrition education program consisting of two (2) sessions per week. There was also a follow-up for another three (3) months. Smart PLS 3.5 and SPSS 19 were used for structural equation modeling, determination of model fitness, and hypotheses testing. The findings indicate that intervention had a significant effect on knowledge improvement as well as the behavior of elderly women. The model explained 5 to 70% of the variance in nutritional behavior. In addition, nutritional behavior was positively affected by the HBM constructs comprised of perceived susceptibility, self-efficacy, perceived benefits, and barriers after the intervention program. The results of this study show that HBM-based educational intervention has a significant effect in improving nutritional knowledge and behavior among elderly women.

  5. Synergistic effects of high temperature and impact compaction on the nano-TiO2 film for the significant improvement of photovoltaic performance of flexible dye-sensitized solar cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yao, Hai-Long; Yang, Guan-Jun; Li, Shan; He, Xue-Long; Fan, Sheng-Qiang; Li, Cheng-Xin; Li, Chang-Jiu

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: ► Electron transport property was significantly improved by in situ heating methods. ► An equivalent model is proposed to clarify the relationship between the R t and J sc . ► Synergistic effects of heating and pressing on TiO 2 film were reported. ► In situ particle heating can be used for highly efficient plastic solar cells. - Abstract: The electron transport property in TiO 2 film was investigated to understand the significant improvement of the photovoltaic performance of dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) by using in situ substrate heating and in situ particle heating approaches through the vacuum cold spraying technology, which accelerates the powder to impact on the substrate surface and form a film. Results showed that the particle connection and thereby electron transport property in TiO 2 film was improved more significantly by in situ particle and substrate heating than by conventional post-sintering of TiO 2 film. An equivalent circuit model was proposed to explain the relationship between the short-circuit current density