Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 33

Search results for: Bruce Stockley

33 Recovery from Detrimental pH Troughs in a Moorland River Using Monitored Calcium Carbonate Introductions

Authors: Lauren Dawson, Sean Comber, Richard Sandford, Alan Tappin, Bruce Stockley

Abstract:

The West Dart River is underperforming for Salmon (Salmo salar) survival rates due to acidified pH troughs under the European Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC). These troughs have been identified as being caused by historic acid rain pollution which is being held in situ by peat bog presence at site and released during flushing events. Natural recovery has been deemed unlikely by the year 2020 using steady state water chemistry models and therefore a program of monitored calcium carbonate (CaCO3) introductions are being conducted to eliminate these troughs, which can drop to pH 2.93 (salmon survival – pH 5.5). The river should be naturally acidic (pH 5.5-6) due to the granite geology of Dartmoor and therefore the CaCO3 introductions are under new methodology (the encasing of the CaCO3 in permeable sacks) to ensure removal should the water pH rise above neutral levels. The water chemistry and ecology are undergoing comprehensive monitoring, including pH and turbidity levels, dissolved organic carbon and aluminum concentration and speciation, while the aquatic biota is being used to assess the potential water chemistry changes. While this project is ongoing, results from the preliminary field trial show only a temporary, localized increase in pH following CaCO3 introductions into the water column. However, changes to the water chemistry have only been identified in the West Dart after methodology adjustments to account for flow rates and spate-dissolution, though no long-term changes have so far been found in the ecology of the river. However, this is not necessarily a negative factor, as the aim of the study is to protect the current ecological communities and the natural pH of the river while remediating only the detrimental pH troughs.

Keywords: anthropogenic acidification recovery, calcium carbonate introductions, ecology monitoring, water chemistry monitoring

Procedia PDF Downloads 28
32 Canada Deuterium Uranium Updated Fire Probabilistic Risk Assessment Model for Canadian Nuclear Plants

Authors: Hossam Shalabi, George Hadjisophocleous

Abstract:

The Canadian Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs) use some portions of NUREG/CR-6850 in carrying out Fire Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA). An assessment for the applicability of NUREG/CR-6850 to CANDU reactors was performed and a CANDU Fire PRA was introduced. There are 19 operating CANDU reactors in Canada at five sites (Bruce A, Bruce B, Darlington, Pickering and Point Lepreau). A fire load density survey was done for all Fire Safe Shutdown Analysis (FSSA) fire zones in all CANDU sites in Canada. National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standard 557 proposes that a fire load survey must be conducted by either the weighing method or the inventory method or a combination of both. The combination method results in the most accurate values for fire loads. An updated CANDU Fire PRA model is demonstrated in this paper that includes the fuel survey in all Canadian CANDU stations. A qualitative screening step for the CANDU fire PRA is illustrated in this paper to include any fire events that can damage any part of the emergency power supply in addition to FSSA cables.

Keywords: Nuclear, Fire Safety, Qualitative Analysis, FDS, CANDU, fuel densities, fire probabilistic risk assessment

Procedia PDF Downloads 2
31 Hypertensive Response to Maximal Exercise Test in Young and Middle Age Hypertensive on Blood Pressure Lowering Medication: Monotherapy vs. Combination Therapy

Authors: James Patrick A. Diaz, Raul E. Ramboyong

Abstract:

Background: Hypertensive response during maximal exercise test provides important information on the level of blood pressure control and evaluation of treatment. Method: A single center retrospective descriptive study was conducted among 117 young (aged 20 to 40) and middle age (aged 40 to 65) hypertensive patients, who underwent treadmill stress test. Currently on maintenance frontline medication either monotherapy (Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor/Angiotensin receptor blocker [ACEi/ARB], Calcium channel blocker [CCB], Diuretic - Hydrochlorthiazide [HCTZ]) or combination therapy (ARB+CCB, ARB+HCTZ), who attained a maximal exercise on treadmill stress test (TMST) with hypertensive response (systolic blood pressure: male >210 mm Hg, female >190 mm Hg, diastolic blood pressure >100 mmHg, or increase of >10 mm Hg at any time during the test), on Bruce and Modified Bruce protocol. Exaggerated blood pressure response during exercise (systolic [SBP] and diastolic [DBP]), peak exercise blood pressure (SBP and DBP), recovery period (SBP and DBP) and test for ischemia and their antihypertensive medication/s were investigated. Analysis of variance and chi-square test were used for statistical analysis. Results: Hypertensive responses on maximal exercise test were seen mostly among female population (P < 0.000) and middle age (P < 0.000) patients. Exaggerated diastolic blood pressure responses were significantly lower in patients who were taking CCB (P < 0.004). A longer recovery period that showed a delayed decline in SBP was observed in patients taking ARB+HCTZ (P < 0.036). There were no significant differences in the level of exaggerated systolic blood pressure response and during peak exercise (both systolic and diastolic) in patients using either monotherapy or combination antihypertensives. Conclusion: Calcium channel blockers provided lower exaggerated diastolic BP response during maximal exercise test in hypertensive middle age patients. Patients on combination therapy using ARB+HCTZ exhibited a longer recovery period of systolic blood pressure.

Keywords: Hypertension, antihypertensive, exercise test, hyperytensive response

Procedia PDF Downloads 158
30 Sensitivity and Specificity of Some Serological Tests Used for Diagnosis of Bovine Brucellosis in Egypt on Bacteriological and Molecular Basis

Authors: Hosein I. Hosein, Ragab Azzam, Ahmed M. S. Menshawy, Sherin Rouby, Khaled Hendy, Ayman Mahrous, Hany Hussien

Abstract:

Brucellosis is a highly contagious bacterial zoonotic disease of a worldwide spread and has different names; Infectious or enzootic abortion and Bang's disease in animals; and Mediterranean or Malta fever, Undulant Fever and Rock fever in humans. It is caused by the different species of genus Brucella which is a Gram-negative, aerobic, non-spore forming, facultative intracellular bacterium. Brucella affects a wide range of mammals including bovines, small ruminants, pigs, equines, rodents, marine mammals as well as human resulting in serious economic losses in animal populations. In human, Brucella causes a severe illness representing a great public health problem. The disease was reported in Egypt for the first time in 1939; since then the disease remained endemic at high levels among cattle, buffalo, sheep and goat and is still representing a public health hazard. The annual economic losses due to brucellosis were estimated to be about 60 million Egyptian pounds yearly, but actual estimates are still missing despite almost 30 years of implementation of the Egyptian control programme. Despite being the gold standard, bacterial isolation has been reported to show poor sensitivity for samples with low-level of Brucella and is impractical for regular screening of large populations. Thus, serological tests still remain the corner stone for routine diagnosis of brucellosis, especially in developing countries. In the present study, a total of 1533 cows (256 from Beni-Suef Governorate, 445 from Al-Fayoum Governorate and 832 from Damietta Governorate), were employed for estimation of relative sensitivity, relative specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value of buffered acidified plate antigen test (BPAT), rose bengal test (RBT) and complement fixation test (CFT). The overall seroprevalence of brucellosis revealed (19.63%). Relative sensitivity, relative specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value of BPAT,RBT and CFT were estimated as, (96.27 %, 96.76 %, 87.65 % and 99.10 %), (93.42 %, 96.27 %, 90.16 % and 98.35%) and (89.30 %, 98.60 %, 94.35 %and 97.24 %) respectively. BPAT showed the highest sensitivity among the three employed serological tests. RBT was less specific than BPAT. CFT showed the least sensitivity 89.30 % among the three employed serological tests but showed the highest specificity. Different tissues specimens of 22 seropositive cows (spleen, retropharyngeal udder, and supra-mammary lymph nodes) were subjected for bacteriological studies for isolation and identification of Brucella organisms. Brucella melitensis biovar 3 could be recovered from 12 (54.55%) cows. Bacteriological examinations failed to classify 10 cases (45.45%) and were culture negative. Bruce-ladder PCR was carried out for molecular identification of the 12 Brucella isolates at the species level. Three fragments of 587 bp, 1071 bp and 1682 bp sizes were amplified indicating Brucella melitensis. The results indicated the importance of using several procedures to overcome the problem of escaping of some infected animals from diagnosis.Bruce-ladder PCR is an important tool for diagnosis and epidemiologic studies, providing relevant information for identification of Brucella spp.

Keywords: Brucellosis, Egypt, relative sensitivity, relative specificity, Bruce-ladder

Procedia PDF Downloads 216
29 Dyeing Cotton with Dyes Extracted from Eucalyptus and Mango Trees

Authors: Tamrat Tesfaye, Bruce Sithole, K. Shabaridharan

Abstract:

The use of natural dyes to replace synthetic dyes has been advocated for to circumvent the environmental problems associated with synthetic dyes. This paper is a preliminary study on the use of natural dyes extracted from eucalyptus and mango trees. Dyes extracted from eucalyptus bark gave more colourized material than the dyes extracted from eucalyptus leaves and mango pills and leaves. Additionally, the extracts exhibited a deeper colour shade. Cotton fiber dyed using the same dye but with different mordants resulted in fabric that exhibited different colours. It appears that natural dyes from these plants could be effective dyes for use on cotton fabrics especially considering that the dyes exhibited excellent colour fastness.

Keywords: Cotton, Natural Dyes, mango, Eucalyptus, mordants, colour fastness

Procedia PDF Downloads 174
28 Application of EEG Wavelet Power to Prediction of Antidepressant Treatment Response

Authors: Dorota Witkowska, Paweł Gosek, Lukasz Swiecicki, Wojciech Jernajczyk, Bruce J. West, Miroslaw Latka

Abstract:

In clinical practice, the selection of an antidepressant often degrades to lengthy trial-and-error. In this work we employ a normalized wavelet power of alpha waves as a biomarker of antidepressant treatment response. This novel EEG metric takes into account both non-stationarity and intersubject variability of alpha waves. We recorded resting, 19-channel EEG (closed eyes) in 22 inpatients suffering from unipolar (UD, n=10) or bipolar (BD, n=12) depression. The EEG measurement was done at the end of the short washout period which followed previously unsuccessful pharmacotherapy. The normalized alpha wavelet power of 11 responders was markedly different than that of 11 nonresponders at several, mostly temporoparietal sites. Using the prediction of treatment response based on the normalized alpha wavelet power, we achieved 81.8% sensitivity and 81.8% specificity for channel T4.

Keywords: Antidepressant, Wavelet, alpha waves, treatment outcome

Procedia PDF Downloads 133
27 The Effect of Different Strength Training Methods on Muscle Strength, Body Composition and Factors Affecting Endurance Performance

Authors: Shaher A. I. Shalfawi, Fredrik Hviding, Bjornar Kjellstadli

Abstract:

The main purpose of this study was to measure the effect of two different strength training methods on muscle strength, muscle mass, fat mass and endurance factors. Fourteen physical education students accepted to participate in this study. The participants were then randomly divided into three groups, traditional training group (TTG), cluster training group (CTG) and control group (CG). TTG consisted of 4 participants aged ( ± SD) (22.3 ± 1.5 years), body mass (79.2 ± 15.4 kg) and height (178.3 ± 11.9 cm). CTG consisted of 5 participants aged (22.2 ± 3.5 years), body mass (81.0 ± 24.0 kg) and height (180.2 ± 12.3 cm). CG consisted of 5 participants aged (22 ± 2.8 years), body mass (77 ± 19 kg) and height (174 ± 6.7 cm). The participants underwent a hypertrophy strength training program twice a week consisting of 4 sets of 10 reps at 70% of one-repetition maximum (1RM), using barbell squat and barbell bench press for 8 weeks. The CTG performed 2 x 5 reps using 10 s recovery in between repetitions and 50 s recovery between sets, while TTG performed 4 sets of 10 reps with 90 s recovery in between sets. Pre- and post-tests were administrated to assess body composition (weight, muscle mass, and fat mass), 1RM (bench press and barbell squat) and a laboratory endurance test (Bruce Protocol). Instruments used to collect the data were Tanita BC-601 scale (Tanita, Illinois, USA), Woodway treadmill (Woodway, Wisconsin, USA) and Vyntus CPX breath-to-breath system (Jaeger, Hoechberg, Germany). Analysis was conducted at all measured variables including time to peak VO2, peak VO2, heart rate (HR) at peak VO2, respiratory exchange ratio (RER) at peak VO2, and number of breaths per minute. The results indicate an increase in 1RM performance after 8 weeks of training. The change in 1RM squat was for the TTG = 30 ± 3.8 kg, CTG = 28.6 ± 8.3 kg and CG = 10.3 ± 13.8 kg. Similarly, the change in 1RM bench press was for the TTG = 9.8 ± 2.8 kg, CTG = 7.4 ± 3.4 kg and CG = 4.4 ± 3.4 kg. The within-group analysis from the oxygen consumption measured during the incremental exercise indicated that the TTG had only a statistical significant increase in their RER from 1.16 ± 0.04 to 1.23 ± 0.05 (P < 0.05). The CTG had a statistical significant improvement in their HR at peak VO2 from 186 ± 24 to 191 ± 12 Beats Per Minute (P < 0.05) and their RER at peak VO2 from 1.11 ± 0.06 to 1.18 ±0.05 (P < 0.05). Finally, the CG had only a statistical significant increase in their RER at peak VO2 from 1.11 ± 0.07 to 1.21 ± 0.05 (P < 0.05). The between-group analysis showed no statistical differences between all groups in all the measured variables from the oxygen consumption test during the incremental exercise including changes in muscle mass, fat mass, and weight (kg). The results indicate a similar effect of hypertrophy strength training irrespective of the methods of the training used on untrained subjects. Because there were no notable changes in body-composition measures, the results suggest that the improvements in performance observed in all groups is most probably due to neuro-muscular adaptation to training.

Keywords: peak VO2, hypertrophy strength training, cluster set, Bruce protocol

Procedia PDF Downloads 126
26 Comparison of Selected Pier-Scour Equations for Wide Piers Using Field Data

Authors: Zuliziana Suif, Nordila Ahmad, Thamer Mohammad, Bruce W. Melville

Abstract:

Current methods for predicting local scour at wide bridge piers, were developed on the basis of laboratory studies and very limited scour prediction were tested with field data. Laboratory wide pier scour equation from previous findings with field data were presented. A wide range of field data were used and it consists of both live-bed and clear-water scour. A method for assessing the quality of the data was developed and applied to the data set. Three other wide pier-scour equations from the literature were used to compare the performance of each predictive method. The best-performing scour equation were analyzed using statistical analysis. Comparisons of computed and observed scour depths indicate that the equation from the previous publication produced the smallest discrepancy ratio and RMSE value when compared with the large amount of laboratory and field data.

Keywords: field data, local scour, scour equation, wide piers

Procedia PDF Downloads 209
25 Interactions within the School Setting and Their Potential Impact on the Wellbeing or Educational Success of High Ability Students: A Literature Review

Authors: Susan Burkett-McKee, Bruce Knight, Michelle Vanderburg

Abstract:

The wellbeing and educational success of high ability students are interrelated concepts with each potentially hindering or enhancing the other. A student’s well-being and educational success are also influenced by intrapersonal and interpersonal factors. This presentation begins with an exploration of the literature pertinent to the wellbeing and educational success of this cohort before an ecological perspective is taken to discuss research into the impact of interactions within the school context. While the literature consistently states that interactions exchanged between high ability students and school community members impact the students’ wellbeing or educational success, no consensus has been reached about whether the impact is positive or negative. Findings from the review shared in this presentation inform an interpretative phenomenological study involving senior secondary students enrolled in inclusive Australian schools to highlight, from the students’ perspective, the ways school-based interactions impact their wellbeing or educational success.

Keywords: Interactions, Wellbeing, literature review, educational success

Procedia PDF Downloads 148
24 Prey-Stage Preference, Functional Response, and Mutual Interference of Amblyseius swirskii Anthias-Henriot on Frankliniella occidentalis Priesner

Authors: Marjan Heidarian Dehkordi, Hossein Allahyari, Bruce Parker, Reza Talaee-Hassanlouei

Abstract:

The Western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis Priesner (Thysanoptera: Thripidae), is a significant pest of many economically important crops. This study evaluated the functional responses, prey-stage preferences and mutual interference of Amblyseius swirskii Anthias-Henriot (Acari: Phytoseiidae) with F. occidentalis as the host under laboratory conditions. The predator species showed no prey stage preference for either prey 1st or 2nd instar. Logistic regression analysis suggested Type II (convex) functional response for the predator species. Consequently, the per capita searching efficiency decreased significantly from 1.2425 to -7.4987 as predator densities increased from 2 to 8. The findings from this study could help select better biological control agents for effective control of F. occidentalis and other pests in vegetable production.

Keywords: Biological Control, functional responses, mutual interference, prey-stage preferences

Procedia PDF Downloads 195
23 Anthropometry in Macedonian Senior Football and Basketball Players

Authors: S. Petrovska, B. Dejanova, L. Todorovska, J. Pluncevic, S. Mancevska, V. Antevska, E. Sivevska, I. Karadjozova

Abstract:

Objective: The aim of this longitudinal study was to describe anthropometric and performance characteristics and to explore their differences between senior football (F) and basketball (B) players. Subjects and methods: 25 F (aged 23±2.5 y) and 25 B (aged 22±4.2 y) from Macedonian national teams and elite sport clubs were annually tested during 2 consecutive years. Full anthropometric profiles (stature, weight, five circumferences, four bone diameters, seven skin-folds and nine calculated parameters with standard formulas) were collected. Body composition was determined with InBody720 System. Physical capacity was tested with ergo metric test of Bruce (Custo med GmbH, Germany). Results: B were taller (p<0.001) and heavier (p<0.01), but leaner (p<0.001). F had higher percentage of muscle mass (p<0.01) and body fat (p< 0.001). F had higher VO2max (p<0.05) and lower hard rate (p<0.01). The differences in physical performance were not significant (p>0.05) within the groups during the 2-years period. Conclusions: These results suggest that there are distinct differences in anthropometric profile between Macedonian senior football and basketball players during the two competitive seasons.

Keywords: Anthropometry, Basketball Players, football players, Macedonia

Procedia PDF Downloads 311
22 Isolation of Three Bioactive Phenantroindolizidine Alkaloids from the Fruit Latex of Ficus botryocarpa Miq.

Authors: Jayson Wau, David Timi, Anthony Harakuwe, Bruce Bowden, Cherie Motti, Harry Sakulas, Rag Gubag-Sipou

Abstract:

The latex of F. botryocarpa fruit is applied on sores, wounds and other skin infections in Papua New Guinea ethnotherapeutic practices. Systematic bioassay guided separation and isolation of subsequent fractions of latex extracts resulted in three bioactive fractions active against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. This study reports structural elucidation of the three isolates. Structures were determined by physical (M.pt and Rf values) and spectroscopic (1D-1H NMR, 2D-HSQC NMR, 2D-HMBC NMR) and MS ESI-POS. The two methylene protons (2H-1) and (2H-3) resonate as triplets at δ 3.59 and δ 4.99 respectively. Electron dense δ 4.99 (2H-3) on (C-3) depicts the strong electron-withdrawing component, quaternary nitrogen (=N= +). Protons resonating at δ 3.88 and 3.89 are singlets depicting two methoxy groups. Both δ 3.88 and δ 3.89 are para-aryls substituents. The methines δ 9.13 and 8.60 are singlets depicting two lone protons on the indolizidinium aryl component. All isolates, (1), (2) and (3) were identified to be ficuseptine by comparing 1D-NMR assignments. 2D-NMR and MS of (2) found it to be ficuseptine chloride '2, 3-dihydro-6, 8-bis (4-methoxyphenyl)-, 1H-indolizinium chloride'. Their counter ions of the ficuseptines were not established and provide promising lead for the further investigation.

Keywords: Antimicrobial activity, Ficus botryocarpa, ficuseptine, sores

Procedia PDF Downloads 385
21 Effect of Red Cabbage Antioxidant Extracts on Lipid Oxidation of Fresh Tilapia

Authors: Ayse Demirbas, Bruce A. Welt, Yavuz Yagiz

Abstract:

Oxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in fish causes loss of product quality. Oxidative rancidity causes loss of nutritional value and undesirable color changes. Therefore, powerful antioxidant extracts may provide a relatively low cost and natural means to reduce oxidation, resulting in longer, higher quality and higher value shelf life of foods. In this study, we measured effects of red cabbage antioxidant on lipid oxidation in fresh tilapia filets using thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) assay, peroxide value (PV) and color assesment analysis. Extraction of red cabbage was performed using an efficient microwave method. Fresh tilapia filets were dipped in or sprayed with solutions containing different concentrations of extract. Samples were stored for up to 9 days at 4°C and analyzed every other day for color and lipid oxidation. Results showed that treated samples had lower oxidation than controls. Lipid peroxide values on treated samples showed benefits through day-7. Only slight differences were observed between spraying and dipping methods. This work shows that red cabbage antioxidant extracts may represent an inexpensive and all natural method for reducing oxidative spoilage of fresh fish.

Keywords: Fish, Shelf Life, antioxidant, lipid oxidation, red cabbage

Procedia PDF Downloads 216
20 Conceptual Model of a Residential Waste Collection System Using ARENA Software

Authors: Bruce G. Wilson

Abstract:

The collection of municipal solid waste at the curbside is a complex operation that is repeated daily under varying circumstances around the world. There have been several attempts to develop Monte Carlo simulation models of the waste collection process dating back almost 50 years. Despite this long history, the use of simulation modeling as a planning or optimization tool for waste collection is still extremely limited in practice. Historically, simulation modeling of waste collection systems has been hampered by the limitations of computer hardware and software and by the availability of representative input data. This paper outlines the development of a Monte Carlo simulation model that overcomes many of the limitations contained in previous models. The model uses a general purpose simulation software program that is easily capable of modeling an entire waste collection network. The model treats the stops on a waste collection route as a queue of work to be processed by a collection vehicle (or server). Input data can be collected from a variety of sources including municipal geographic information systems, global positioning system recorders on collection vehicles, and weigh scales at transfer stations or treatment facilities. The result is a flexible model that is sufficiently robust that it can model the collection activities in a large municipality, while providing the flexibility to adapt to changing conditions on the collection route.

Keywords: Modeling, Monte Carlo Simulation, queues, residential waste collection

Procedia PDF Downloads 265
19 Lennox-gastaut Syndrome Associated with Dysgenesis of Corpus Callosum

Authors: A. Bruce Janati, Muhammad Umair Khan, Naif Alghassab, Ibrahim Alzeir, Assem Mahmoud, M. Sammour

Abstract:

Rationale: Lennox-Gastaut syndrome(LGS) is an electro-clinical syndrome composed of the triad of mental retardation, multiple seizure types, and the characteristic generalized slow spike-wave complexes in the EEG. In this article, we report on two patients with LGS whose brain MRI showed dysgenesis of corpus callosum(CC). We review the literature and stress the role of CC in the genesis of secondary bilateral synchrony(SBS). Method: This was a clinical study conducted at King Khalid Hospital. Results: The EEG was consistent with LGS in patient 1 and unilateral slow spike-wave complexes in patient 2. The MRI showed hypoplasia of the splenium of CC in patient 1, and global hypoplasia of CC combined with Joubert syndrome in patient 2. Conclusion: Based on the data, we proffer the following hypotheses: 1-Hypoplasia of CC interferes with functional integrity of this structure. 2-The genu of CC plays a pivotal role in the genesis of secondary bilateral synchrony. 3-Electrodecremental seizures in LGS emanate from pacemakers generated in the brain stem, in particular the mesencephalon projecting abnormal signals to the cortex via thalamic nuclei. 4-Unilateral slow spike-wave complexes in the context of mental retardation and multiple seizure types may represent a variant of LGS, justifying neuroimaging studies.

Keywords: MRI, eeg, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, corpus callosum

Procedia PDF Downloads 299
18 Key Factors for Stakeholder Engagement and Sustainable Development

Authors: Jo Rhodes, Peter Lok, Bruce Bergstrom, Vincent Cheng

Abstract:

The aim of this study is to determine key factors and processes for multinationals (MNCs) to develop an effective stakeholder engagement and sustainable development framework. A qualitative multiple-case approach was used. A triangulation method was adopted (interviews, archival documents and observations) to collect data on three global firms (MNCs). 9 senior executives were interviewed for this study (3 from each firm). An initial literature review was conducted to explore possible practices and factors (the deductive approach) to sustainable development. Interview data were analysed using Nvivo to obtain appropriate nodes and themes for the framework. A comparison of findings from interview data and themes, factors developed from the literature review and cross cases comparison were used to develop the final conceptual framework (the inductive approach). The results suggested that stakeholder engagement is a key mediator between ‘stakeholder network’ (internal and external factors) and outcomes (corporate social responsibility, social capital, shared value and sustainable development). Key internal factors such as human capital/talent, technology, culture, leadership and processes such as collaboration, knowledge sharing and co-creation of value with stakeholders were identified. These internal factors and processes must be integrated and aligned with external factors such as social, political, cultural, environment and NGOs to achieve effective stakeholder engagement.

Keywords: Sustainable Development, Corporate Social Responsibility, Engagement, stakeholder, shared value

Procedia PDF Downloads 400
17 Orotic Acid-Induced Fatty Liver in Mink: Characterization and Testing of Bioactive Peptides for Prevention and Treatment

Authors: Don Buddika Oshadi Malaweera, Lora Harris, Bruce Rathgeber, Chibuike C. Udenigwe, Kirsti Rouvinen-Watt

Abstract:

Fatty liver disease is among the three most severe health concerns for mink and believed to occur through the same mechanism as nursing sickness. In North America, nursing sickness affects about 45% of mink farms and in Canada, approximately 50,000 mink females is affected annually. Orotic acid (OA) plays a critical role in lipid metabolism and can increase hepatic lipids by enhancing Sterol regulatory element binding protein-1c expression and decreasing Carnitine palmitoyl transferase I activity. This study was conducted to identify particular pathways and regulatory control points involved in fatty liver development, and evaluate the effectiveness of arginine and bioactive peptides for prevention and treatment of fatty liver disease in mink. A total of 45 mink were used in 9 treatments. The experimental diets consisted of 1% OA, 2% L-arginine and 5% of whey protein hydrolysates. At the end of 10 days of experimental period, the mink were anaesthetized, sampled for blood and euthanized, samples were obtained for histological, biochemical and molecular assays. The blood samples will be analyzed for clinical chemistry and triacylglycerol. The liver samples will be analyzed for total lipid content and analyzed for 6 genes of interest involved in adipogenic transformation, ER stress, and liver inflammation.

Keywords: fatty liver, L-arginine, mink, orotic acid, whey protein hydrolysates

Procedia PDF Downloads 172
16 Identification and Characterization of Inhibitors of Epoxide Hydrolase from Trichoderma reesei

Authors: Gabriel S. De Oliveira, Patricia P. Adriani, Christophe Moriseau, Bruce D. Hammock, Felipe S. Chambergo

Abstract:

Epoxide hydrolases (EHs) are enzymes that are present in all living organisms and catalyze the hydrolysis of epoxides to the corresponding vicinal diols. EHs have high biotechnological interest for the drug design and chemistry transformation for industries. In this study, we describe the identification of substrates and inhibitors of epoxide hydrolase enzyme from the filamentous fungus Trichoderma reesei (TrEH), and these inhibitors showed the fungal growth inhibitory activity. We have used the cloned enzyme and expressed in E. coli to develop the screening in the library of fluorescent substrates with the objective of finding the best substrate to be used in the identification of good inhibitors for the enzyme TrEH. The substrate (3-phenyloxiranyl)-acetic acid cyano-(6-methoxy-naphthalen-2-yl)-methyl ester showed the highest specific activity and was chosen for the next steps of the study. The inhibitors screening was performed in the library with more than three thousand molecules and we could identify the 6 best inhibitors. The IC50 of these molecules were determined in nM and all the best inhibitors have urea or amide in their structure, because It has been recognized that these groups fit well in the hydrolase catalytic pocket of the epoxide hydrolases. Then the growth of T. reesei in PDA medium containing these TrEH inhibitors was tested, and fungal growth inhibition activity was demonstrated with more than 60% of inhibition of fungus growth in the assay with the TrEH inhibitor with the lowest IC50. Understanding how this EH enzyme from T. reesei responds to inhibitors may contribute for the study of fungal metabolism and drug design against pathogenic fungi.

Keywords: inhibitor, epoxide hydrolases, fungal growth inhibition, Trichoderma reesei

Procedia PDF Downloads 54
15 Development and Implementation of E-Disease Surveillance Systems for Public Health Southern Africa: A Critical Review

Authors: Taurai T. Chikotie, Bruce W. Watson

Abstract:

The manifestation of ‘new’ infectious diseases and the re-emergence of ‘old’ infectious diseases now present global problems and Southern Africa has not been spared from such calamity. Although having an organized public health system, countries in this region have failed to leverage on the proliferation in use of Information and Communication Technologies to promote effective disease surveillance. Objective: The objective of this study was to critically review and analyse the crucial variables to consider in the development and implementation of electronic disease surveillance systems in public health within the context of Southern Africa. Methodology: A critical review of literature published in English using, Google Scholar, EBSCOHOST, Science Direct, databases from the Centre for Disease Control (CDC and articles from the World Health Organisation (WHO) was undertaken. Manual reference and grey literature searches were also conducted. Results: Little has been done towards harnessing the potential of information technologies towards disease surveillance and this has been due to several challenges that include, lack of funding, lack of health informatics experts, poor supporting infrastructure, an unstable socio-political and socio-economic ecosystem in the region and archaic policies towards integration of information technologies in public health governance. Conclusion: The Southern African region stands to achieve better health outcomes if they adopt the use of e-disease surveillance systems in public health. However, the dynamics and complexities of the socio-economic, socio-political and technical variables would need addressing to ensure the successful development and implementation of e-disease surveillance systems in the region.

Keywords: Disease surveillance, Public Health Informatics, Southern Africa, critical review

Procedia PDF Downloads 90
14 A Review on Valorisation of Chicken Feathers: Current Status and Future Prospects

Authors: Tamrat Tesfaye, Bruce Sithole, Deresh Ramjugernath

Abstract:

Worldwide, the poultry–processing industry generates large quantities of feather by-products that amount to 40 billion kilograms annually. The feathers are considered wastes although small amounts are often processed into valuable products such as feather meal and fertilizers. The remaining waste is disposed of by incineration or by burial in controlled landfills. Improper disposal of these biological wastes contributes to environmental damage and transmission of diseases. Economic pressures, environmental pressures, increasing interest in using renewable and sustainable raw materials, and the need to decrease reliance on non-renewable petroleum resources behove the industry to find better ways of dealing with waste feathers. A closer look at the structure and composition of feathers shows that the whole part of a chicken feather (rachis and barb) can be used as a source of a pure structural protein called keratin which can be exploited for conversion into a number of high-value bio products. Additionally, a number of technologies can be used to convert other biological components of feathers into high value added products. Thus, conversion of the waste into valuable products can make feathers an attractive raw material for the production of bio products. In this review, possible applications of chicken feathers in a variety of technologies and products are discussed. Thus, using waste feathers as a valuable resource can help the poultry industry to dispose of the waste feathers in an environmentally sustainable manner that also generates extra income for the industry. Their valorisation can result in their sustainable conversion into high-value materials and products on the proviso of existence or development of cost-effective technologies for converting this waste into the useful products.

Keywords: keratin, valorisation, biodegradable product, poultry waste, feathers

Procedia PDF Downloads 179
13 Valorisation of Mango Seed: Response Surface Methodology Based Optimization of Starch Extraction from Mango Seeds

Authors: Tamrat Tesfaye, Bruce Sithole

Abstract:

Box-Behnken Response surface methodology was used to determine the optimum processing conditions that give maximum extraction yield and whiteness index from mango seed. The steeping time ranges from 2 to 12 hours and slurring of the steeped seed in sodium metabisulphite solution (0.1 to 0.5 w/v) was carried out. Experiments were designed according to Box-Behnken Design with these three factors and a total of 15 runs experimental variables of were analyzed. At linear level, the concentration of sodium metabisulphite had significant positive influence on percentage yield and whiteness index at p<0.05. At quadratic level, sodium metabisulphite concentration and sodium metabisulphite concentration2 had a significant negative influence on starch yield; sodium metabisulphite concentration and steeping time*temperature had significant (p<0.05) positive influence on whiteness index. The adjusted R2 above 0.8 for starch yield (0.906465) and whiteness index (0.909268) showed a good fit of the model with the experimental data. The optimum sodium metabisulphite concentration, steeping hours, and temperature for starch isolation with maximum starch yield (66.428%) and whiteness index (85%) as set goals for optimization with the desirability of 0.91939 was 0.255w/v concentration, 2hrs and 50 °C respectively. The determined experimental value of each response based on optimal condition was statistically in accordance with predicted levels at p<0.05. The Mango seeds are the by-products obtained during mango processing and possess disposal problem if not handled properly. The substitution of food based sizing agents with mango seed starch can contribute as pertinent resource deployment for value-added product manufacturing and waste utilization which might play significance role of food security in Ethiopia.

Keywords: Textile, sizing, Extraction, Starch, mango, synthetic sizing agent

Procedia PDF Downloads 113
12 Mobile Communication Technologies, Romantic Attachment and Relationship Quality: An Exploration of Partner Attunement

Authors: Jodie Bradnam, Mark Edwards, Bruce Watt

Abstract:

Mobile technologies have emerged as tools to create and sustain social and romantic relationships. The integration of technologies in close relationships has been of particular research interest with findings supporting the positive role of mobile phones in nurturing feelings of closeness and connection. More recently, the use of text messaging to manage conflict has become a focus of research attention. Four hundred and eleven adults in committed romantic relationships completed a series of questionnaires measuring attachment orientation, relationship quality, texting frequencies, attitudes, and response expectations. Attachment orientation, relationship length, texting for connection and disconnection were significant predictors of relationship quality, specifically relationship intimacy. Text frequency varied as a function of attachment orientation, with high attachment anxiety associated with high texting frequencies and with low relationship quality. Sending text messages of love and support was related to higher intimacy and relationship satisfaction scores, while sending critical or impersonal texts was associated with significantly lower intimacy and relationship satisfaction scores. The use of texting to manage relational conflict was a stronger negative predictor of relationship satisfaction than was the use of texting to express love and affection. Consistent with research on face-to-face communication in couples, the expression of negative sentiments via text were related to lower relationship quality, and these negative sentiments had a stronger and more enduring impact on relationship quality than did the expression of positive sentiments. Attachment orientation, relationship length and relationship status emerged as variables of interest in understanding the use of mobile technologies in romantic relationships.

Keywords: Mobile Communication, attachment, relationship quality, intimacy, texting, destructive conflict, relationship satisfaction

Procedia PDF Downloads 236
11 Inventory of Local Forages in Indonesia That Potentially Reduce Methane (CH4) Emissions and Increase Productivity in Ruminants

Authors: Amriana Hifizah, Philip Edward Vercoe, Graeme Bruce Martin, Teuku Reza Ferasy, Muhammad Hambal

Abstract:

Many native forage plant species have been used in Indonesia as feed for ruminants. However, less information is available about how these plants affect productivity, let alone methane emissions. In the province of Aceh, where the traditional practice is to feed local forages to small ruminants, the farmers are not satisfied with the productivity of their livestock, and they attribute this problem to poor availability and too few options for good quality forages. Forage quality is reduced by high environmental temperatures which increase the amount of lignification. In addition to reducing productivity, these factors also increase enteric methane production. A preliminary survey about potential forage species was completed in three different districts, two of low elevation and one of high elevation: Syiah Kuala (05°30’5.08” N to 095°24’7.35” E), elevation 29 m MSL; Kajhu (05°32’34.6” N to 095°21’17.7” E), elevation 30 m MSL; Lembah Seulawah (05°28'06.4" N to 095°43' 14.2" E), elevation 254 m MSL. Information about local plants was collected in a semi-structured interview with scientists, government field officers and local farmers, in the city of Banda Aceh and in those three districts. The outcome was a list 40 species that could be useful, of which 21 were selected for further study. The selection process was based on several criteria: high availability, high protein content, low toxicity, and evidence of secondary metabolites (eg, history of medicinal plants for both human and animals). For some of the selected medicinal plants, there is experimental evidence of effects on methane production during rumen fermentation. Subsequently, the selected forages were tested for their effects on rumen fermentation in vitro, using batch culture. The data produced will be used to identify forages with the potential to reduce CH4 emissions. These candidates will then be assessed for their benefits (fermentability and productivity) and potential deleterious side-effects.

Keywords: methane, forage, Rumen, batch culture

Procedia PDF Downloads 218
10 Experimental Modeling of Spray and Water Sheet Formation Due to Wave Interactions with Vertical and Slant Bow-Shaped Model

Authors: Yuri S. Muzychka, Armin Bodaghkhani, Bruce Colbourne

Abstract:

The process of spray-cloud formation and flow kinematics produced from breaking wave impact on vertical and slant lab-scale bow-shaped models were experimentally investigated. Bubble Image Velocimetry (BIV) and Image Processing (IP) techniques were applied to study the various types of wave-model impacts. Different wave characteristics were generated in a tow tank to investigate the effects of wave characteristics, such as wave phase velocity, wave steepness on droplet velocities, and behavior of the process of spray cloud formation. The phase ensemble-averaged vertical velocity and turbulent intensity were computed. A high-speed camera and diffused LED backlights were utilized to capture images for further post processing. Various pressure sensors and capacitive wave probes were used to measure the wave impact pressure and the free surface profile at different locations of the model and wave-tank, respectively. Droplet sizes and velocities were measured using BIV and IP techniques to trace bubbles and droplets in order to measure their velocities and sizes by correlating the texture in these images. The impact pressure and droplet size distributions were compared to several previously experimental models, and satisfactory agreements were achieved. The distribution of droplets in front of both models are demonstrated. Due to the highly transient process of spray formation, the drag coefficient for several stages of this transient displacement for various droplet size ranges and different Reynolds number were calculated based on the ensemble average method. From the experimental results, the slant model produces less spray in comparison with the vertical model, and the droplet velocities generated from the wave impact with the slant model have a lower velocity as compared with the vertical model.

Keywords: Image Processing, spray charachteristics, droplet size and velocity, wave-body interactions, bubble image velocimetry

Procedia PDF Downloads 152
9 The Influence of Wildlife Watching Experience on Tourists’ Connection to Wildlife Conservation Caring and Awareness

Authors: Fiffy Hanisdah Saikim, Bruce Prideaux

Abstract:

One of the aims of wildlife tourism is to educate visitors about the threats facing wildlife, in general, and the actions needed to protect the environment and maintain biodiversity. Annually, millions of tourists visit natural areas and zoos primarily to view flagship species such as rhinos and elephants. Venues rely on the inherent charisma of these species to increase visitation and anchor conservation efforts. Expected visitor outcomes from the use of flagships include raised levels of awareness and pro-conservation behaviors. However, the role of flagships in wildlife tourism has been criticized for not delivering conservation benefits for species of interest or biodiversity and producing negative site impacts. Furthermore, little is known about how the connection to a species influences conservation behaviors. This paper addresses this gap in knowledge by extending previous work exploring wildlife tourism to include the emotional connection formed with wildlife species and pro-conservation behaviors for individual species and biodiversity. This paper represents a substantial contribution to the field because (a) it incorporates the role of the experience in understanding how tourists connect with a species and how this connection influences pro-conservation behaviors; and (b) is the first attempt to operationalize Conservation Caring as a measure of tourists’ connection with a species. Existing studies have investigated how specific elements, such as interpretation or species’ morphology may influence programmatic goals or awareness. However, awareness is a poor measure of an emotional connection with an animal. Furthermore, there has not been work done to address the holistic nature of the wildlife viewing experience, and its subsequent influence on behaviors. Results based on the structural equation modelling, support the validity of Conservation Caring as a factor; the ability of wildlife tourism to influence Conservation Caring; and that this connection is a strong predictor of conservation awareness behaviors. These findings suggest wildlife tourism can deliver conservation outcomes. The studies in this paper also provide a valuable framework for structuring wildlife tourism experiences to align with flagship related conservation outcomes, and exploring a wider assemblage of species as potential flagships.

Keywords: Wildlife Tourism, structural equation modelling, conservation caring, conservation awareness

Procedia PDF Downloads 150
8 Shedding Light on the Black Box: Explaining Deep Neural Network Prediction of Clinical Outcome

Authors: Qing Zeng-Treitler, Yan Cheng, Yijun Shao, Charlene R. Weir, Rashmee U. Shah, Bruce E. Bray

Abstract:

Deep neural network (DNN) models are being explored in the clinical domain, following the recent success in other domains such as image recognition. For clinical adoption, outcome prediction models require explanation, but due to the multiple non-linear inner transformations, DNN models are viewed by many as a black box. In this study, we developed a deep neural network model for predicting 1-year mortality of patients who underwent major cardio vascular procedures (MCVPs), using temporal image representation of past medical history as input. The dataset was obtained from the electronic medical data warehouse administered by Veteran Affairs Information and Computing Infrastructure (VINCI). We identified 21,355 veterans who had their first MCVP in 2014. Features for prediction included demographics, diagnoses, procedures, medication orders, hospitalizations, and frailty measures extracted from clinical notes. Temporal variables were created based on the patient history data in the 2-year window prior to the index MCVP. A temporal image was created based on these variables for each individual patient. To generate the explanation for the DNN model, we defined a new concept called impact score, based on the presence/value of clinical conditions’ impact on the predicted outcome. Like (log) odds ratio reported by the logistic regression (LR) model, impact scores are continuous variables intended to shed light on the black box model. For comparison, a logistic regression model was fitted on the same dataset. In our cohort, about 6.8% of patients died within one year. The prediction of the DNN model achieved an area under the curve (AUC) of 78.5% while the LR model achieved an AUC of 74.6%. A strong but not perfect correlation was found between the aggregated impact scores and the log odds ratios (Spearman’s rho = 0.74), which helped validate our explanation.

Keywords: prediction, logistic regression model, frailty, deep neural network, temporal data

Procedia PDF Downloads 23
7 Relationships of Clergy Work-Family Enrichment with Job Attitudes

Authors: Hao Wu, John Faucett, Bruce Moore, Sean Nadji

Abstract:

The demands of the ministry often conflict with responsibilities at home, and clergy often experience domain ambiguity between the domains of work and family. However, the unique level of family involvement in the pastor’s profession might enrich the pastor’s ministry as well as the functioning of the family unit. Life in the church family might offer clergy family members a sense of meaning and purpose, social support, and a feeling of belonging. Church activities can offer enhanced opportunities for family interaction. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships of work/family enrichment to clergy job satisfaction, burnout, engagement, and withdrawal. Method: Participants were clergy serving within a state conference of the United Methodist Church. A survey was administered electronically, with e-mails and the United Methodist Church (UMC) Facebook page used as access points to the survey. Usable responses for this portion of the survey were obtained from 132 clergy. Participants completed The Work-Family Enrichment Scales, The Utrecht Work Engagement Scale, The Scale of Emotional Exhaustion in Ministry, The Satisfaction in Ministry Scale, and a scale of withdrawal developed for the present study. They also answered questions relating to how involved their spouses are in their ministry and the degree to which spouse involvement in church ministry strengthens church ministry. Findings: Higher scores for work to family enrichment correlated positively with job satisfaction (r = - .69, p < .01) and engagement (r = .50, p < .01), and negatively with burnout (r = -.48, p < .01) and withdrawal (r = -.46, p < .01). Higher scores for family to work enrichment correlated positively with job satisfaction (r = .29, p = .01) and engagement (.24, p < .05), and negatively with burnout (r = -.48, p < .01), and withdrawal (r = -.46, p < .01). Hierarchical regression analysis suggested that clergy perceptions concerning the degree to which spouse involvement in church ministry strengthens church ministry moderates the relationship between degree of spouse involvement in church activities and clergy withdrawal. To the degree that spouse involvement is believed to strengthen ministry, high spouse involvement is related to less clergy withdrawal (Multiple R-Squared = .068, Adj. R-Squared = .043, F = 2.69 on 3 & 110 DF, p = .05). Concluding Statement: Clergy job attitudes are related to work/family enrichment. Spouse involvement in parish ministry is associated with less clergy withdrawal, as long as clergy believe spouse involvement strengthens their ministry.

Keywords: Job Satisfaction, emotional exhaustion, job engagement, clergy, work/family enrichment

Procedia PDF Downloads 59
6 Revision of Arthroplasty in Rheumatoid and Osteoarthritis: Methotrexate and Radiographic Lucency in RA Patients

Authors: Mike T. Wei, Douglas N. Mintz, Lisa A. Mandl, Arielle W. Fein, Jayme C. Burket, Yuo-Yu Lee, Wei-Ti Huang, Vivian P. Bykerk, Mark P. Figgie, Edward F. Di Carlo, Bruce N. Cronstein, Susan M. Goodman

Abstract:

Background/Purpose: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients have excellent total hip arthroplasty (THA) survival, and methotrexate (MTX), an anti-inflammatory disease modifying drug which may affect bone reabsorption, may play a role. The purpose of this study is to determine the diagnosis leading to revision THA (rTHA) in RA patients and to assess the association of radiographic lucency with MTX use. Methods: All patients with validated diagnosis of RA in the institution’s THA registry undergoing rTHA from May 2007 - February 2011 were eligible. Diagnosis leading to rTHA and medication use was determined by chart review. Osteolysis was evaluated on available radiographs by measuring maximum lucency in each Gruen zone. Differences within RA patients with/without MTX in osteolysis, demographics, and medications were assessed with chi-squared, Fisher's exact tests or Mann-Whitney U tests as appropriate. The error rate for multiple comparisons of lucency in the different Gruen zones was corrected via false discovery rate methods. A secondary analysis was performed to determine differences in diagnoses leading to revision between RA and matched OA controls (2:1 match by sex age +/- 5 years). OA exclusion criteria included presence of rheumatic diseases, use of MTX, and lack of records. Results: 51 RA rTHA were identified and compared with 103 OA. Mean age for RA was 57.7 v 59.4 years for OA (p = 0.240). 82.4% RA were female v 83.5% OA (p = 0.859). RA had lower BMI than OA (25.5 v 28.2; p = 0.166). There was no difference in diagnosis leading to rTHA, including infection (RA 3.9 v OA 6.8%; p = 0.719) or dislocation (RA 23.5 v OA 23.3%; p = 0.975). There was no significant difference in the length of time the implant was in before revision: RA 11.0 v OA 8.8 years (p = 0.060). Among RA with/without MTX, there was no difference in use of biologics (30.0 v 43.3%, p = 0.283), steroids (47.6 v 50.0%, p = 0.867) or bisphosphonates (23.8 v 33.3%, p = 0.543). There was no difference in rTHA diagnosis with/without MTX, including loosening (52.4 v 56.7%, p = 0.762). There was no significant difference in lucencies with MTX use in any Gruen zone. Patients with MTX had femoral stem subsidence of 3.7mm v no subsidence without MTX (p = 0.006). Conclusion: There was no difference in the diagnosis leading to rTHR in RA and OA, although RA trended longer prior to rTHA. In this small retrospective study, there were no significant differences associated with MTX exposure or radiographic lucency among RA patients. The significance of subsidence is not clear. Further study of arthroplasty survival in RA patients is warranted.

Keywords: Rheumatoid Arthritis, methotrexate, hip arthroplasty, revision arthroplasty

Procedia PDF Downloads 120
5 Textile-Based Sensing System for Sleep Apnea Detection

Authors: Mary S. Ruppert-Stroescu, Minh Pham, Bruce Benjamin

Abstract:

Sleep apnea is a condition where a person stops breathing and can lead to cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and stroke. In the United States, approximately forty percent of overnight sleep apnea detection tests are cancelled. The purpose of this study was to develop a textile-based sensing system that acquires biometric signals relevant to cardiovascular health, to transmit them wirelessly to a computer, and to quantitatively assess the signals for sleep apnea detection. Patient interviews, literature review and market analysis defined a need for a device that ubiquitously integrated into the patient’s lifestyle. A multi-disciplinary research team of biomedical scientists, apparel designers, and computer engineers collaborated to design a textile-based sensing system that gathers EKG, Sp02, and respiration, then wirelessly transmits the signals to a computer in real time. The electronic components were assembled from existing hardware, the Health Kit which came pre-set with EKG and Sp02 sensors. The respiration belt was purchased separately and its electronics were built and integrated into the Health Kit mother board. Analog ECG signals were amplified and transmitted to the Arduino™ board where the signal was converted from analog into digital. By using textile electrodes, ECG lead-II was collected, and it reflected the electrical activity of the heart. Signals were collected when the subject was in sitting position and at sampling rate of 250 Hz. Because sleep apnea most often occurs in people with obese body types, prototypes were developed for a man’s size medium, XL, and XXL. To test user acceptance and comfort, wear tests were performed on 12 subjects. Results of the wear tests indicate that the knit fabric and t-shirt-like design were acceptable from both lifestyle and comfort perspectives. The airflow signal and respiration signal sensors return good signals regardless of movement intensity. Future study includes reconfiguring the hardware to a smaller size, developing the same type of garment for the female body, and further enhancing the signal quality.

Keywords: Sensors, wearables, Electronic Textiles, sleep apnea

Procedia PDF Downloads 83
4 Functional Neurocognitive Imaging (fNCI): A Diagnostic Tool for Assessing Concussion Neuromarker Abnormalities and Treating Post-Concussion Syndrome in Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Patients

Authors: Parker Murray, Marci Johnson, Tyson S. Burnham, Alina K. Fong, Mark D. Allen, Bruce McIff

Abstract:

Purpose: Pathological dysregulation of Neurovascular Coupling (NVC) caused by mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is the predominant source of chronic post-concussion syndrome (PCS) symptomology. fNCI has the ability to localize dysregulation in NVC by measuring blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signaling during the performance of fMRI-adapted neuropsychological evaluations. With fNCI, 57 brain areas consistently affected by concussion were identified as PCS neural markers, which were validated on large samples of concussion patients and healthy controls. These neuromarkers provide the basis for a computation of PCS severity which is referred to as the Severity Index Score (SIS). The SIS has proven valuable in making pre-treatment decisions, monitoring treatment efficiency, and assessing long-term stability of outcomes. Methods and Materials: After being scanned while performing various cognitive tasks, 476 concussed patients received an SIS score based on the neural dysregulation of the 57 previously identified brain regions. These scans provide an objective measurement of attentional, subcortical, visual processing, language processing, and executive functioning abilities, which were used as biomarkers for post-concussive neural dysregulation. Initial SIS scores were used to develop individualized therapy incorporating cognitive, occupational, and neuromuscular modalities. These scores were also used to establish pre-treatment benchmarks and measure post-treatment improvement. Results: Changes in SIS were calculated in percent change from pre- to post-treatment. Patients showed a mean improvement of 76.5 percent (σ= 23.3), and 75.7 percent of patients showed at least 60 percent improvement. Longitudinal reassessment of 24 of the patients, measured an average of 7.6 months post-treatment, shows that SIS improvement is maintained and improved, with an average of 90.6 percent improvement from their original scan. Conclusions: fNCI provides a reliable measurement of NVC allowing for identification of concussion pathology. Additionally, fNCI derived SIS scores direct tailored therapy to restore NVC, subsequently resolving chronic PCS resulting from mTBI.

Keywords: Concussion, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), neurovascular coupling (NVC), post-concussion syndrome (PCS)

Procedia PDF Downloads 76