Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 8

Search results for: Anke J. Woudstra

8 Evaluation of a Personalized Online Decision Aid for Colorectal Cancer Screening: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Authors: Linda P. M. Pluymen, Mariska M. G. Leeflang, I. Stegeman, Henock G. Yebyo, Anne E. M. Brabers, Patrick M. Bossuyt, E. Dekker, Anke J. Woudstra, Mirjam P. Fransen


Weighing the benefits and harms of colorectal cancer screening can be difficult for individuals. An existing online decision aid was expanded with a benefit-harm analysis to help people make an informed decision about participating in colorectal cancer screening. In a randomized controlled trial, we investigated whether those in the intervention group who used the decision aid with benefit-harm analysis were more certain about their decision than those in the control group who used the decision aid without benefit-harm analysis. Participants were 623 (39% of those invited) men and women aged 45 until 75 years old. Analyses were performed in those 386 participants (62%) who reported to have completed the entire decision aid. No statistically significant differences were observed between intervention and control group in decisional conflict score (mean difference 2.4, 95% CI -0.9, 5.6), clarity of values (mean difference 1.0, 95% CI -4.4, 6.6), deliberation score (mean difference 0.5, 95% CI -0.6, 1.7), anxiety score (mean difference 0.0, 95% CI -0.3, 0.3) and risk perception score (mean difference 0.1, -0.1, 0.3). Adding a benefit-harm analysis to an online decision aid did not improve informed decision making about participating in colorectal cancer screening.

Keywords: benefit-harm analysis, decision aid, informed decision making, personalized decision making

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7 A Review of the Long Term Effects of In-Service Training Towards Inclusive Education

Authors: Meenakshi Srivastava, Anke A. De Boer, Sip Jan Pij


Teacher’s preparedness towards special educational needs (SEN) of the students in regular schools is an important factor in making education inclusive as a goal to provide education for all. The current study measured the long term effects of an in-service teacher training programme which focused on the inclusion of students with a range of SEN. The programme was on three particular aspects: teachers’ attitudes, their knowledge about SEN and knowledge about teaching methods. A refresher course was also organized for participants of the initial training programme. The long term effects were examined by teachers using a self-report questionnaire (n = 38). The wider effects of the initial training were recorded by interviewing school principals (n = 4). Repeated measures of ANOVA revealed significant effects: more positive attitudes and increased knowledge about SEN among teachers who took the refresher course (n = 18) compared to those who had not (n = 19). Principals also found a more positive attitude, sensitivity and increased awareness about SEN among the participants.

Keywords: inclusion, students with special educational needs, teacher training, follow-up, attitudes change

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6 Effect of Leaks in Solid Oxide Electrolysis Cells Tested for Durability under Co-Electrolysis Conditions

Authors: Megha Rao, Søren H. Jensen, Xiufu Sun, Anke Hagen, Mogens B. Mogensen


Solid oxide electrolysis cells have an immense potential in converting CO2 and H2O into syngas during co-electrolysis operation. The produced syngas can be further converted into hydrocarbons. This kind of technology is called power-to-gas or power-to-liquid. To produce hydrocarbons via this route, durability of the cells is still a challenge, which needs to be further investigated in order to improve the cells. In this work, various nickel-yttria stabilized zirconia (Ni-YSZ) fuel electrode supported or YSZ electrolyte supported cells, cerium gadolinium oxide (CGO) barrier layer, and an oxygen electrode are investigated for durability under co-electrolysis conditions in both galvanostatic and potentiostatic conditions. While changing the gas on the oxygen electrode, keeping the fuel electrode gas composition constant, a change in the gas concentration arc was observed by impedance spectroscopy. Measurements of open circuit potential revealed the presence of leaks in the setup. It is speculated that the change in concentration impedance may be related to the leaks. Furthermore, the cells were also tested under pressurized conditions to find an inter-play between the leak rate and the pressure. A mathematical modeling together with electrochemical and microscopy analysis is presented.

Keywords: co-electrolysis, durability, leaks, gas concentration arc

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5 Influence of Layer-by-Layer Coating Parameters on the Properties of Hybrid Membrane for Water Treatment

Authors: Jenny Radeva, Anke-Gundula Roth, Christian Goebbert, Robert Niestroj-Pahl, Lars Daehne, Axel Wolfram, Juergen WIese


The presented investigation studies the correlation between the process parameters of Layer-by-Layer (LbL) coatings and properties of the produced hybrid membranes for water treatment. The coating of alumina ceramic support membrane with polyelectrolyte multilayers on top results in hybrid membranes with increased fouling resistant behavior, high retention (up to 90%) of salt ions and various pharmaceuticals, selectivity to various organic molecules as known from LbL coated polyether sulfone membranes and the possibility of pH response control. Chosen polyelectrolytes were added to the support using the LbL-coating process. Parameters like the type of polyelectrolyte, ionic strength, and pH were varied in order to find the most suitable process conditions and to study how they influence the properties of the final product. The applied LbL-films was investigated in respect to its homogeneity and penetration depth. The analysis of the layer buildup was performed using fluorescence labeled polyelectrolyte molecules and Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy as well as Scanning and Transmission Electron Microscopy. Furthermore, the influence of the coating parameters on the porosity, surface potential, retention, and permeability of the developed hybrid membranes were estimated. In conclusion, a comparison was drawn between the filtration performance of the uncoated alumina ceramic membrane and modified hybrid membranes.

Keywords: water treatment, membranes, ceramic membranes, hybrid membranes, layer-by-layer modification

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4 Removal of Pharmaceuticals from Aquarius Solutions Using Hybrid Ceramic Membranes

Authors: Jenny Radeva, Anke-Gundula Roth, Christian Goebbert, Robert Niestroj-Pahl, Lars Daehne, Axel Wolfram, Juergen Wiese


The technological advantages of ceramic filtration elements were combined with polyelectrolyte films in the development process of hybrid membrane for the elimination of pharmaceuticals from Aquarius solutions. Previously extruded alumina ceramic membranes were coated with nanosized polyelectrolyte films using Layer-by-Layer technology. The polyelectrolyte chains form a network with nano-pores on the ceramic surface and promote the retention of small molecules like pharmaceuticals and microplastics, which cannot be eliminated using standard ultrafiltration methods. Additionally, the polyelectrolyte coat contributes with its adjustable (based on application) Zeta Potential for repulsion of contaminant molecules with opposite charges. Properties like permeability, bubble point, pore size distribution and Zeta Potential of ceramic and hybrid membranes were characterized using various laboratory and pilot tests and compared with each other. The most significant role for the membrane characterization played the filtration behavior investigation, during which retention against widely used pharmaceuticals like Diclofenac, Ibuprofen and Sulfamethoxazol was subjected to series of filtration tests. The presented study offers a new perspective on nanosized molecules removal from aqueous solutions and shows the importance of combined techniques application for the elimination of pharmaceutical contaminants from drinking water.

Keywords: water treatment, hybrid membranes, layer-by-layer coating, filtration, polyelectrolytes

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3 Improving Sample Analysis and Interpretation Using QIAGENs Latest Investigator STR Multiplex PCR Assays with a Novel Quality Sensor

Authors: Daniel Mueller, Melanie Breitbach, Stefan Cornelius, Sarah Pakulla-Dickel, Margaretha Koenig, Anke Prochnow, Mario Scherer


The European STR standard set (ESS) of loci as well as the new expanded CODIS core loci set as recommended by the CODIS Core Loci Working Group, has led to a higher standardization and harmonization in STR analysis across borders. Various multiplex PCRs assays have since been developed for the analysis of these 17 ESS or 23 CODIS expansion STR markers that all meet high technical demands. However, forensic analysts are often faced with difficult STR results and the questions thereupon. What is the reason that no peaks are visible in the electropherogram? Did the PCR fail? Was the DNA concentration too low? QIAGEN’s newest Investigator STR kits contain a novel Quality Sensor (QS) that acts as internal performance control and gives useful information for evaluating the amplification efficiency of the PCR. QS indicates if the reaction has worked in general and furthermore allows discriminating between the presence of inhibitors or DNA degradation as a cause for the typical ski slope effect observed in STR profiles of such challenging samples. This information can be used to choose the most appropriate rework strategy.Based on the latest PCR chemistry called FRM 2.0, QIAGEN now provides the next technological generation for STR analysis, the Investigator ESSplex SE QS and Investigator 24plex QS Kits. The new PCR chemistry ensures robust and fast PCR amplification with improved inhibitor resistance and easy handling for a manual or automated setup. The short cycling time of 60 min reduces the duration of the total PCR analysis to make a whole workflow analysis in one day more likely. To facilitate the interpretation of STR results a smart primer design was applied for best possible marker distribution, highest concordance rates and a robust gender typing.

Keywords: PCR, QIAGEN, quality sensor, STR

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2 Layer-by-Layer Modified Ceramic Membranes for Micropollutant Removal

Authors: Jenny Radeva, Anke-Gundula Roth, Christian Goebbert, Robert Niestroj-Pahl, Lars Daehne, Axel Wolfram, Juergen Wiese


Ceramic membranes for water purification combine excellent stability with long-life characteristics and high chemical resistance. Layer-by-Layer coating is a well-known technique for customization and optimization of filtration properties of membranes but is mostly used on polymeric membranes. Ceramic membranes comprising a metal oxide filtration layer of Al2O3 or TiO2 are charged and therefore highly suitable for polyelectrolyte adsorption. The high stability of the membrane support allows efficient backwash and chemical cleaning of the membrane. The presented study reports metal oxide/organic composite membrane with an increased rejection of bivalent salts like MgSO4 and the organic micropollutant Diclofenac. A self-build apparatus was used for applying the polyelectrolyte multilayers on the ceramic membrane. The device controls the flow and timing of the polyelectrolytes and washing solutions. As support for the Layer-by-Layer coat, ceramic mono-channel membranes were used with an inner capillary of 8 mm diameter, which is connected to the coating device. The inner wall of the capillary is coated subsequently with polycat- and anions. The filtration experiments were performed with a feed solution of MgSO4 and Diclofenac. The salt content of the permeate was detected conductometrically and Diclofenac was measured with UV-Adsorption. The concluded results show retention values of magnesium sulfate of 70% and diclofenac retention of 60%. Further experimental research studied various parameters of the composite membrane-like Molecular Weight Cut Off and pore size, Zeta potential and its mechanical and chemical robustness.

Keywords: water purification, polyelectrolytes, membrane modification, layer-by-layer coating, ceramic membranes

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1 Dietary Vitamin D Intake and the Bladder Cancer Risk: A Pooled Analysis of Prospective Cohort Studies

Authors: Iris W. A. Boot, Anke Wesselius, Maurice P. Zeegers


Diet may play an essential role in the aetiology of bladder cancer (BC). Vitamin D is involved in various biological functions which have the potential to prevent BC development. Besides, vitamin D also influences the uptake of calcium and phosphorus , thereby possibly indirectly influencing the risk of BC. The aim of the present study was to investigate the relation between vitamin D intake and BC risk. Individual dietary data were pooled from three cohort studies. Food item intake was converted to daily intakes of vitamin D, calcium and phosphorus. Pooled multivariate hazard ratios (HRs), with corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were obtained using Cox-regression models. Analyses were adjusted for gender, age and smoking status (Model 1), and additionally for the food groups fruit, vegetables and meat (Model 2). Dose–response relationships (Model 1) were examined using a nonparametric test for trend. In total, 2,871 cases and 522,364 non-cases were included in the analyses. The present study showed an overall increased BC risk for high dietary vitamin D intake (HR: 1.14, 95% CI: 1.03-1.26). A similar increase BC risk with high vitamin D intake was observed among women and for the non-muscle invasive BC subtype, (HR: 1.41, 95% CI: 1.15-1.72, HR: 1.13, 95% CI: 1.01-1.27, respectively). High calcium intake decreased the BC risk among women (HR: 0.81, 95% CI: 0.67-0.97). A combined inverse effect on BC risk was observed for low vitamin D intake and high calcium intake (HR: 0.67, 95% CI: 0.48-0.93), while a positive effect was observed for high vitamin D intake in combination with low, moderate and high phosphorus (HR: 1.31, 95% CI: 1.09-1.59, HR: 1.17, 95% CI: 1.01-1.36, HR: 1.16, 95% CI: 1.03-1.31, respectively). Combining all nutrients showed a decreased BC risk for low vitamin D intake, high calcium and moderate phosphor intake (HR: 0.37, 95% CI: 0.18-0.75), and an increased BC risk for moderate intake of all the nutrients (HR: 1.18, 95% CI: 1.02-1.38), for high vitamin D and low calcium and phosphor intake (HR: 1.28, 95% CI: 1.01-1.62), and for moderate vitamin D and calcium and high phosphorus intake (HR: 1.27, 95% CI: 1.01-1.59). No significant dose-response analyses were observed. The findings of this study show an increased BC risk for high dietary vitamin D intake and a decreased risk for high calcium intake. Besides, the study highlights the importance of examining the effect of a nutrient in combination with complementary nutrients for risk assessment. Future research should focus on nutrients in a wider context and in nutritional patterns.

Keywords: bladder cancer, nutritional oncology, pooled cohort analysis, vitamin D

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