Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 43

Search results for: Charitha Harshani Perera

43 The Impact of Brand-Related User-Generated Content on Brand Positioning: A Study on Private Higher Education Institutes in Vietnam

Authors: Charitha Harshani Perera, Rajkishore Nayak, Long Thang Van Nguyen

Abstract:

With the advent of social media, Vietnam has changed the way customers perceive the information about the brand. In the context of higher education, the adoption of social media has received attention with the increasing rate of social media usage among undergraduates. Brand-related user-generated content (UGC) on social media emphasizes the social ties between users and users’ participation, which promotes the communication to build and maintain the relationship with the brands. Although brand positioning offers a significant competitive advantage, the association with brand-related user-generated content in social media with brand positioning in the context of higher education is still an under-researched area. Accordingly, using social identity theory and social exchange theory, this research aims to deepen our understanding of the influence of brand-related user-generated content on brand positioning and purchase intention. Employing a quantitative survey design,384 Vietnamese undergraduates were selected based on purposive sampling. The findings suggest that brand-related user-generated content influence brand positioning and brand choice intention. However, there is a significant mediating effect of the reliability and understandability of the content.

Keywords: brand positioning, brand-related user-generated content, emerging countries, higher education

Procedia PDF Downloads 73
42 Design and Development of an Algorithm to Predict Fluctuations of Currency Rates

Authors: Nuwan Kuruwitaarachchi, M. K. M. Peiris, C. N. Madawala, K. M. A. R. Perera, V. U. N Perera

Abstract:

Dealing with businesses with the foreign market always took a special place in a country’s economy. Political and social factors came into play making currency rate changes fluctuate rapidly. Currency rate prediction has become an important factor for larger international businesses since large amounts of money exchanged between countries. This research focuses on comparing the accuracy of mainly three models; Autoregressive Integrated Moving Average (ARIMA), Artificial Neural Networks(ANN) and Support Vector Machines(SVM). series of data import, export, USD currency exchange rate respect to LKR has been selected for training using above mentioned algorithms. After training the data set and comparing each algorithm, it was able to see that prediction in SVM performed better than other models. It was improved more by combining SVM and SVR models together.

Keywords: ARIMA, ANN, FFNN, RMSE, SVM, SVR

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41 Ultrasound as an Aid to Predict the Onset of Leaking in Dengue Haemorrhagic Fever: Experience of a Dengue Treatment Facility in South Asia

Authors: Hasn Perera, Is Almeida, Hnk Perera, Mzf Mohammed, Ade Silva, H. Wijesinghe, Ajal Fernando

Abstract:

Introduction: Dengue is a major Public Health burden of two clinical entities, Dengue Fever & Dengue Haemorrhagic Fever (DHF). The vast majority of dengue deaths occur in DHF patients, where the diagnosis hinges on the presence of fluid leakage. Limited Ultrasound Scans (USS) of chest and abdomen are used widely at Centre for Clinical Management of Dengue & Dengue Haemorrhagic Fever (CCMDDHF), as the primary method for detecting fluid leaking in DHF. This study analyses the relationship between haematological and USS findings at the onset of leaking and to further determine the usefulness of ultrasound in diagnosing DHF. Methods: A prospective analysis of 80 serologically confirmed dengue patients initially admitted to a General Medical and Paediatric wards who were subsequently transferred to the CCMDDHF from March to September 2017 were analysed. In addition to repeated blood counts and capillary haematocrits’, serial USS were done to detect the onset fluid leaking by three competent and experienced doctors at CCMDDHF. Results: 80 patients (male: female: 38:42) with a mean age of 20 years (SD ±16.8, range 3-74) were evaluated. Dropping of platelet counts below 100,000 and haematocrit rise towards 20% started 4±1.3 day of fever with a mean platelet value of 69x103(range17-98x103). Gallbladder wall thickening was the commonest (98.7%) USS finding followed by fluid in hepato-renal pouch (95%), pelvic fluid (58.7%), right-sided pleural effusion (35%), bilateral effusions (7.5%). USS evidence of plasma leakage was detected in 11.25 %( n=9) of DHF cases from 1 day before significant haematocrit rise was noted. 35 (43.7%) patients with lowering platelets and haematocrit rise showed no objective evidence of plasma leaking on ultrasound scan. Conclusion: This outbreak underscores the importance of USS as a useful, sensitive and cost-effective tool for early diagnosis of suspected DHF cases, facilitating the tracking of progress of leaking and management of epidemics.

Keywords: dengue, ultrasound, plasma leaking, South Asia

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40 Investigation of Cytotoxic Compounds in Ethyl Acetate and Chloroform Extracts of Nigella sativa Seeds by Sulforhodamine-B Assay-Guided Fractionation

Authors: Harshani Uggallage, Kapila D. Dissanayaka

Abstract:

A Sulforhodamine-B assay-guided fractionation on Nigella sativa seeds was conducted to determine the presence of cytotoxic compounds against human hepatoma (HepG2) cells. Initially, a freeze-dried sample of Nigella sativa seeds was sequentially extracted into solvents of increasing polarities. Crude extracts from the sequential extraction of Nigella sativa seeds in chloroform and ethyl acetate showed the highest cytotoxicity. The combined mixture of these two extracts was subjected to bioassay guided fractionation using a modified Kupchan method of partitioning, followed by Sephadex® LH-20 chromatography. This chromatographic separation process resulted in a column fraction with a convincing IC50 (half-maximal inhibitory concentration) value of 13.07µg/ml, which is considerable for developing therapeutic drug leads against human hepatoma. Reversed phase High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) was finally conducted for the same column fraction, and the result indicates the presence of one or several main cytotoxic compounds against human HepG2 cells.

Keywords: cytotoxic compounds, half-maximal inhibitory concentration, high-performance liquid chromatography, human HepG2 cells, nigella sativa seeds, Sulforhodamine-B assay

Procedia PDF Downloads 267
39 Kinetic Aspect Investigation of Chitosan / Nanohydroxyapatite / Na ₂CO₃ Gel System

Authors: P. S. D. Perera, S. U. Adikary

Abstract:

The gelation behavior of Chitosan/nanohydroxyapatite sol in the presence of a crosslinking agent Na ₂CO₃ was investigated experimentally. In this case, the gelation time(tgel) was determined by the rheological measurements of the final mixture. The tgel has been determined from dynamic viscosity slope experiments. We found that chitosan/nHA sol with 1% nano-hydroxyapatite and 1.6% Na2CO3 required coagulant performance. Hence Na ₂CO₃ and nanohydroxyapatite concentrations remain constant over the experiment. The order of reaction was first order with respect to chitosan and rate constant of the gel system was 9.0 x 10-4 s-1, respectively, depending on the temperature of the system. The gelation temperature was carried out at 37 ⁰C.

Keywords: kinetics, gelation, sol-gel system, chitosan/ nHA/ Na ₂CO₃ composite

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38 Investigation of Enhancement of Heat Transfer in Natural Convection Utilizing of Nanofluids

Authors: S. Etaig, R. Hasan, N. Perera

Abstract:

This paper analyses the heat transfer performance and fluid flow using different nanofluids in a square enclosure. The energy equation and Navier-Stokes equation are solved numerically using finite volume scheme. The effect of volume fraction concentration on the enhancement of heat transfer has been studied icorporating the Brownian motion; the influence of effective thermal conductivity on the enhancement was also investigated for a range of volume fraction concentration. The velocity profile for different Rayleigh number. Water-Cu, water AL2O3 and water-TiO2 were tested.

Keywords: computational fluid dynamics, natural convection, nanofluid and thermal conductivity

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37 Harvesting of Kinetic Energy of the Raindrops

Authors: K. C. R.Perera, V. P. C Dassanayake, B. M. Hapuwatte, B. G. Smapath

Abstract:

This paper presents a methodology to harvest the kinetic energy of the raindrops using piezoelectric devices. In the study 1m×1m PVDF (Polyvinylidene fluoride) piezoelectric membrane, which is fixed by the four edges, is considered for the numerical simulation on deformation of the membrane due to the impact of the raindrops. Then according to the drop size of the rain, the simulation is performed classifying the rainfall types into three categories as light stratiform rain, moderate stratiform rain and heavy thundershower. The impact force of the raindrop is dependent on the terminal velocity of the raindrop, which is a function of raindrop diameter. The results were then analyzed to calculate the harvestable energy from the deformation of the piezoelectric membrane.

Keywords: raindrop, piezoelectricity, deformation, terminal velocity

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36 A Framework for Embedding Industry 4.0 in the UAE Defence Manufacturing Industry

Authors: Khalifa Al Baloushi, Hongwei Zhang, Terrence Perera

Abstract:

Over the last few decades, the government of the UAE has been taking actions to consolidate defense manufacturing entities with the view to build a coherent and modern defense manufacturing base. Whilst these actions have significantly improved the overall capabilities of defense manufacturing; further opportunities exist to radically transform the sector. A comprehensive literature review and data collected from a survey identified three potential areas of improvements, (a) integration of Industry 4.0 technologies and other smart technologies, (b) stronger engagement of small and Medium-sized defense manufacturing companies and (c) Enhancing the national defense policies by embedding best practices from other nations. This research paper presents the design and development of a conceptual framework for the UAE defense industrial ecosystem.

Keywords: industry 4.0, defense manufacturing, eco-systems, integration

Procedia PDF Downloads 59
35 Fuzzy Based Stabilizer Control System for Quad-Rotor

Authors: B. G. Sampath, K. C. R. Perera, W. A. S. I. Wijesuriya, V. P. C. Dassanayake

Abstract:

In this paper the design, development and testing of a stabilizer control system for a Quad-rotor is presented which is focused on the maneuverability. The mechanical design is performed along with the design of the controlling algorithm which is devised using fuzzy logic controller. The inputs for the system are the angular positions and angular rates of the Quad-Rotor relative to three axes. Then the output data is filtered from an accelerometer and a gyroscope through a Kalman filter. In the development of the stability controlling system Mandani Fuzzy Model is incorporated. The results prove that the fuzzy based stabilizer control system is superior in high dynamic disturbances compared to the traditional systems which use PID integrated stabilizer control systems.

Keywords: fuzzy stabilizer, maneuverability, PID, quad-rotor

Procedia PDF Downloads 239
34 A Comparison of Dietary Quality and Nutritional Adequacy of Meal Plans of a Diet Prescription Generator Web App against the Australian Guidelines to Healthy Eating

Authors: Ananda Perera

Abstract:

Diet therapy has a positive impact on many diseases in General Practice. If a meal plan can be generated as easily as writing a drug prescription for dyspepsia, then the evidence and practice gap in nutrition therapy can be narrowed. Meal plans of 50 diet prescriptions were compared with the criteria for a healthy diet given by Australian authorities. The energy value of each meal plan was compared with the recommended daily energy requirements of the authorities for Diet Prescription Generator (DPG) accuracy. Meal plans generated were within the criteria laid down by the Australian authorities for a healthy diet.

Keywords: dieting, obesity, diabetes, weight loss, computerized decision support systems, dieting software, CDSS, meal plans

Procedia PDF Downloads 23
33 Analysis of Expression Data Using Unsupervised Techniques

Authors: M. A. I Perera, C. R. Wijesinghe, A. R. Weerasinghe

Abstract:

his study was conducted to review and identify the unsupervised techniques that can be employed to analyze gene expression data in order to identify better subtypes of tumors. Identifying subtypes of cancer help in improving the efficacy and reducing the toxicity of the treatments by identifying clues to find target therapeutics. Process of gene expression data analysis described under three steps as preprocessing, clustering, and cluster validation. Feature selection is important since the genomic data are high dimensional with a large number of features compared to samples. Hierarchical clustering and K Means are often used in the analysis of gene expression data. There are several cluster validation techniques used in validating the clusters. Heatmaps are an effective external validation method that allows comparing the identified classes with clinical variables and visual analysis of the classes.

Keywords: cancer subtypes, gene expression data analysis, clustering, cluster validation

Procedia PDF Downloads 62
32 A Bio-Inspired Approach to Produce Wettable Nylon Fabrics

Authors: Sujani B. Y. Abeywardena, Srimala Perera, K. M. Nalin De Silva, S. Walpalage

Abstract:

Surface modifications are vital to accomplish the moisture management property in highly demanded synthetic fabrics. Biomimetic and bio-inspired surface modifications are identified as one of the fascinating areas of research. In this study, nature’s way of cooling elephants’ body temperature using mud bathing was mimicked to create a superior wettable nylon fabric with improved comfortability. For that, bentonite nanoclay was covalently grafted on nylon fabric using silane as a coupling agent. Fourier transform infrared spectra and Scanning electron microscopy images confirmed the successful grafting of nanoclay on nylon. The superior wettability of surface modified nylon was proved by standard protocols. This fabric coating strongly withstands more than 50 cycles of laundry. It is expected that this bio-inspired wettable nylon fabric may break the barrier of using nylon in various hydrophilic textile applications.

Keywords: bentonite nanoclay, biomimetic, covalent modification, nylon fabric, surface, wettability

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31 Development of a Process to Manufacture High Quality Refined Salt from Crude Solar Salt

Authors: Rathnayaka D. D. T. , Vidanage P. W. , Wasalathilake K. C. , Wickramasingha H. W. , Wijayarathne U. P. L. , Perera S. A. S.

Abstract:

This paper describes the research carried out to develop a process to increase the NaCl percentage of crude salt which is obtained from the conventional solar evaporation process. In this study refined salt was produced from crude solar salt by a chemico-physical method which consists of coagulation, precipitation and filtration. Initially crude salt crystals were crushed and dissolved in water. Optimum amounts of calcium hydroxide, sodium carbonate and Poly Aluminium Chloride (PAC) were added to the solution respectively. Refined NaCl solution was separated out by a filtration process. The solution was tested for Total Suspended Solids, SO42-, Mg2+, Ca2+. With optimum dosage of reagents, the results showed that a level of 99.60% NaCl could be achieved. Further this paper discusses the economic viability of the proposed process. A 83% profit margin can be achieved by this process and it is an increase of 112.3% compared to the traditional process.

Keywords: chemico-physical, economic, optimum, refined, solar salt

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30 Proof of Concept Design and Development of a Computer-Aided Medical Evaluation of Symptoms Web App: An Expert System for Medical Diagnosis in General Practice

Authors: Ananda Perera

Abstract:

Computer-Assisted Medical Evaluation of Symptoms (CAMEOS) is a medical expert system designed to help General Practices (GPs) make an accurate diagnosis. CAMEOS comprises a knowledge base, user input, inference engine, reasoning module, and output statement. The knowledge base was developed by the author. User input is an Html file. The physician user collects data in the consultation. Data is sent to the inference engine at servers. CAMEOS uses set theory to simulate diagnostic reasoning. The program output is a list of differential diagnoses, the most probable diagnosis, and the diagnostic reasoning.

Keywords: CDSS, computerized decision support systems, expert systems, general practice, diagnosis, diagnostic systems, primary care diagnostic system, artificial intelligence in medicine

Procedia PDF Downloads 15
29 Evaluation of Longitudinal Relaxation Time (T1) of Bone Marrow in Lumbar Vertebrae of Leukaemia Patients Undergoing Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Authors: M. G. R. S. Perera, B. S. Weerakoon, L. P. G. Sherminie, M. L. Jayatilake, R. D. Jayasinghe, W. Huang

Abstract:

The aim of this study was to measure and evaluate the Longitudinal Relaxation Times (T1) in bone marrow of an Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML) patient in order to explore the potential for a prognostic biomarker using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) which will be a non-invasive prognostic approach to AML. MR image data were collected in the DICOM format and MATLAB Simulink software was used in the image processing and data analysis. For quantitative MRI data analysis, Region of Interests (ROI) on multiple image slices were drawn encompassing vertebral bodies of L3, L4, and L5. T1 was evaluated using the T1 maps obtained. The estimated bone marrow mean value of T1 was 790.1 (ms) at 3T. However, the reported T1 value of healthy subjects is significantly (946.0 ms) higher than the present finding. This suggests that the T1 for bone marrow can be considered as a potential prognostic biomarker for AML patients.

Keywords: acute myeloid leukaemia, longitudinal relaxation time, magnetic resonance imaging, prognostic biomarker.

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28 A Systematic Review on Assistive Technology Robotics in Lower and Middle-Income Settings

Authors: Sumudu Sameera Perera Kimmantudawage, Chapal Khasnabis

Abstract:

Technology is changing at a rapid rate, with innovations in robotics being hailed and tested in countries such as Japan, the United States and Australia, however the conversation in a public health context is stagnant. While obvious barriers to robotics use in low and middle-income countries and regions exist, the avoidance of attempting to address these regions of the world may potentially lead to an ever-increasing divide between those of high income countries and those of less. A systematic review was undertaken to determine the number of projects involving research, development and testing of robotics considered low and middle-income regions. Major findings indicate that an overwhelmingly significant number of projects failed to consider low and middle-income countries or regions. These results are unsurprising however alarming, as bridging the divide is an important step forward in achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. It is hoped that this research would spawn future robotics research that focusses on lower and middle-income regions.

Keywords: assistive technology, health equality, robotics, socioeconomic

Procedia PDF Downloads 149
27 Effective Method of Paneling for Source/Vortex/Doublet Panel Methods Using Conformal Mapping

Authors: K. C. R. Perera, B. M. Hapuwatte

Abstract:

This paper presents an effective method to divide panels for mesh-less methods of source, vortex and doublet panel methods. In this research study the physical domain of air-foils were transformed into computational domain of a circle using conformal mapping technique of Joukowsky transformation. Then the circle is divided into panels of equal length and the co-ordinates were remapped into physical domain of the air-foil. With this method the leading edge and the trailing edge of the air-foil is panelled with a high density of panels and the rest of the body is panelled with low density of panels. The high density of panels in the leading edge and the trailing edge will increase the accuracy of the solutions obtained from panel methods where the fluid flow at the leading and trailing edges are complex.

Keywords: conformal mapping, Joukowsky transformation, physical domain, computational domain

Procedia PDF Downloads 319
26 Resilient Environments vs. Resilient Architects: Creativity, Practice and Education

Authors: Y. Perera, M. Pathiraja

Abstract:

Within the paradigm of 'Resilient Built-environments,' in order for architecture to be resilient, 'Resilience' should be identified as an essential component of the architect’s notion of creativity. In much simpler terms, 'Resilient Built-Environment' should necessarily be a by-product of the 'Resilient Architect.' The inherent influence of individualistic notions of creativity upon the practice had intensified the dichotomy between theory and practice unless the notion of 'Resilience' is identified as an integral component of the architect’s notion of creativity. Analysing the architectural position is an ideal way of understanding the architect’s notion of creativity, therefore, in exploring the notion of 'Resilience' and the 'Resilient Architect' within the Sri Lankan platform, the architectural positions of two renowned architects; Geoffrey Bawa and Valentine Gunasekara were explored and analysed. The architectural positions of both the architects asserted specific rules and methodologies adopted within the process of problem solving that had subsequently led to a traceable language / pattern within their architecture. The dominance of such rules within the practice could be detrimental to adaptation of theories / notions, such as 'Resilience' and the formation of the 'Resilient Architect', unless methodologies itself are flexible, robust, despite rigidity, or else the notion of 'Resilience' exist in the form of a methodological rule.

Keywords: architectural position, creativity, education, practice, resilience, theory

Procedia PDF Downloads 223
25 A Review of Test Protocols for Assessing Coating Performance of Water Ballast Tank Coatings

Authors: Emmanuel A. Oriaifo, Noel Perera, Alan Guy, Pak. S. Leung, Kian T. Tan

Abstract:

Concerns on corrosion and effective coating protection of double hull tankers and bulk carriers in service have been raised especially in water ballast tanks (WBTs). Test protocols/methodologies specifically that which is incorporated in the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), Performance Standard for Protective Coatings for Dedicated Sea Water ballast tanks (PSPC) are being used to assess and evaluate the performance of the coatings for type approval prior to their application in WBTs. However, some of the type approved coatings may be applied as very thick films to less than ideally prepared steel substrates in the WBT. As such films experience hygrothermal cycling from operating and environmental conditions, they become embrittled which may ultimately result in cracking. This embrittlement of the coatings is identified as an undesirable feature in the PSPC but is not mentioned in the test protocols within it. There is therefore renewed industrial research aimed at understanding this issue in order to eliminate cracking and achieve the intended coating lifespan of 15 years in good condition. This paper will critically review test protocols currently used for assessing and evaluating coating performance, particularly the IMO PSPC.

Keywords: corrosion test, hygrothermal cycling, coating test protocols, water ballast tanks

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24 Time of Release of Larval Parasitoid, Cotesia plutellae (Kurdjumov) on Parasitization of Plutella xylostella L. on Cabbage

Authors: M. T. M. D. R. Perera, N. Senanayake

Abstract:

Cotesia plutellae is a locally available larval parasitoid of diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella, which can be used to manage P. xylostella in the field in an integrated pest management strategy. A study was undertaken to find out the best time of releasing C. plutellae for effective management of P. xylostella using three release times; 2, 3 and 4 weeks after transplanting of cabbage in farmer’s fields at Marassana in Kandy District, Sri Lanka, during Yala 2014 and 2015 seasons. Results revealed that the percentage mean values of parasitization in Yala 2015, was significantly high; 69.47 and 43.85, when introduced at 2 and 3 weeks after transplanting respectively and significantly low 23.31, when released at 4 weeks after transplanting. It is therefore evident that the parasitoid release should be done before 3 weeks, preferably at 2 weeks after transplanting of cabbage in the field. The highest percentage parasitism achieved was 83.90 at 2 weeks after transplanting in Yala 2015 and the lowest being 18.85 and 12.00% at 4 weeks after transplanting in Yala 2014 and 2015 respectively. Unparasitized larvae were able to maintain high P. xylostella populations up to harvest. Even though there is no yield advantage by using parasitoids for P. xylostella management, the cost incurred for insect pest management was greatly reduced compared to use of synthetic chemicals.

Keywords: cabbage, Cotesia plutellae, larval parasitoid, Plutella xylostella, time of release

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23 Micropillar-Assisted Electric Field Enhancement for High-Efficiency Inactivation of Bacteria

Authors: Sanam Pudasaini, A. T. K. Perera, Ahmed Syed Shaheer Uddin, Sum Huan Ng, Chun Yang

Abstract:

Development of high-efficiency and environment friendly bacterial inactivation methods is of great importance for preventing waterborne diseases which are one of the leading causes of death in the world. Traditional bacterial inactivation methods (e.g., ultraviolet radiation and chlorination) have several limitations such as longer treatment time, formation of toxic byproducts, bacterial regrowth, etc. Recently, an electroporation-based inactivation method was introduced as a substitute. Here, an electroporation-based continuous flow microfluidic device equipped with an array of micropillars is developed, and the device achieved high bacterial inactivation performance ( > 99.9%) within a short exposure time ( < 1 s). More than 99.9% reduction of Escherichia coli bacteria was obtained for the flow rate of 1 mL/hr, and no regrowth of bacteria was observed. Images from scanning electron microscope confirmed the formation of electroporation-induced nano-pore within the cell membrane. Through numerical simulation, it has been shown that sufficiently large electric field strength (3 kV/cm), required for bacterial electroporation, were generated using PDMS micropillars for an applied voltage of 300 V. Further, in this method of inactivation, there is no involvement of chemicals and the formation of harmful by-products is also minimum.

Keywords: electroporation, high-efficiency, inactivation, microfluidics, micropillar

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22 Signal Amplification Using Graphene Oxide in Label Free Biosensor for Pathogen Detection

Authors: Agampodi Promoda Perera, Yong Shin, Mi Kyoung Park

Abstract:

The successful detection of pathogenic bacteria in blood provides important information for early detection, diagnosis and the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases. Silicon microring resonators are refractive-index-based optical biosensors that provide highly sensitive, label-free, real-time multiplexed detection of biomolecules. We demonstrate the technique of using GO (graphene oxide) to enhance the signal output of the silicon microring optical sensor. The activated carboxylic groups in GO molecules bind directly to single stranded DNA with an amino modified 5’ end. This conjugation amplifies the shift in resonant wavelength in a real-time manner. We designed a capture probe for strain Staphylococcus aureus of 21 bp and a longer complementary target sequence of 70 bp. The mismatched target sequence we used was of Streptococcus agalactiae of 70 bp. GO is added after the complementary binding of the probe and target. GO conjugates to the unbound single stranded segment of the target and increase the wavelength shift on the silicon microring resonator. Furthermore, our results show that GO could successfully differentiate between the mismatched DNA sequences from the complementary DNA sequence. Therefore, the proposed concept could effectively enhance sensitivity of pathogen detection sensors.

Keywords: label free biosensor, pathogenic bacteria, graphene oxide, diagnosis

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21 Impact of Business Intelligence on the Business Performance of the Banking Sector in Sri Lanka

Authors: Anjana Manawadu, Isuri Namalka, Sathma Perera, Charuni Wickraamarachchi, Anuradha Jayakody, Vandhana Dunuwila

Abstract:

Business intelligence is a set of tools and techniques which are used to analyze and convert raw data into actionable and coherent information to make better decisions in businesses; this has become an essential component of any organization in today’s world context. The banking industry has adapted business intelligence to gain a competitive advantage over others. This study reveals how business intelligence affects the business performance of the banking sector and how they utilize business intelligence in their day-to-day operations. The general objective of this study is to determine the impact of business intelligence on the business performance of Sri Lankan banking sector, and this was accomplished by completing the three sub-objectives. The developed sub-objectives were derived to check the relationship between business intelligence factors (perception, product, process, team, and technology) and business performance; and to check how business intelligence factors influence the business performance of Sri Lankan banking sector. Further, to differentiate the impact of business intelligence among the state and non-state banks in Sri Lanka. The deductive approach was used as the research method, and the stratified sampling method was used to determine the sample of this study. Data has been collected covering twenty-eight state and non-state banks in Sri Lanka. The multiple regression and correlation were used as the main analytical techniques to obtain the results. Based on the findings of this study, it has been concluded that there is a positive relationship between business intelligence factors and banking performance, and there is significant impact of business intelligence on the business performance of the banking sector in Sri Lanka. Further, it concluded that state and non-state banks in Sri Lanka have a similar impact of business intelligence on their business performance. Finally, as a recommendation, banks should pay more attention to develop business intelligence in banks to enhance their business performance.

Keywords: business intelligence, business performance, banking sector, Sri Lanka

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20 An Image Processing Scheme for Skin Fungal Disease Identification

Authors: A. A. M. A. S. S. Perera, L. A. Ranasinghe, T. K. H. Nimeshika, D. M. Dhanushka Dissanayake, Namalie Walgampaya

Abstract:

Nowadays, skin fungal diseases are mostly found in people of tropical countries like Sri Lanka. A skin fungal disease is a particular kind of illness caused by fungus. These diseases have various dangerous effects on the skin and keep on spreading over time. It becomes important to identify these diseases at their initial stage to control it from spreading. This paper presents an automated skin fungal disease identification system implemented to speed up the diagnosis process by identifying skin fungal infections in digital images. An image of the diseased skin lesion is acquired and a comprehensive computer vision and image processing scheme is used to process the image for the disease identification. This includes colour analysis using RGB and HSV colour models, texture classification using Grey Level Run Length Matrix, Grey Level Co-Occurrence Matrix and Local Binary Pattern, Object detection, Shape Identification and many more. This paper presents the approach and its outcome for identification of four most common skin fungal infections, namely, Tinea Corporis, Sporotrichosis, Malassezia and Onychomycosis. The main intention of this research is to provide an automated skin fungal disease identification system that increase the diagnostic quality, shorten the time-to-diagnosis and improve the efficiency of detection and successful treatment for skin fungal diseases.

Keywords: Circularity Index, Grey Level Run Length Matrix, Grey Level Co-Occurrence Matrix, Local Binary Pattern, Object detection, Ring Detection, Shape Identification

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19 MicroRNA-211 Regulates Oxidative Phosphorylation and Energy Metabolism in Human Vitiligoa

Authors: Anupama Sahoo, Bongyong Lee, Katia Boniface, Julien Seneschal, Sanjaya K. Sahoo, Tatsuya Seki, Chunyan Wang, Soumen Das, Xianlin Han, Michael Steppie, Sudipta Seal, Alain Taieb, Ranjan J. Perera

Abstract:

Vitiligo is a common, chronic skin disorder characterized by loss of epidermal melanocytes and progressive depigmentation. Vitiligo has a complex immune, genetic, environmental, and biochemical etiology, but the exact molecular mechanisms of vitiligo development and progression, particularly those related to metabolic control, are poorly understood. Here we characterized the human vitiligo cell line PIG3V and the normal human melanocytes, HEM-l by RNA-sequencing, targeted metabolomics, and shotgun lipidomics. Melanocyte-enriched miR-211, a known metabolic switch in non-pigmented melanoma cells, was severely downregulated in vitiligo cell line PIG3V and skin biopsies from vitiligo patients, while its novel predicted targets transcriptional co-activator PGC1-α (PPARGC1A), ribonucleotide reductase regulatory subunit M2 (RRM2), and serine-threonine protein kinase TAO1 (TAOK1) were reciprocally upregulated. miR-211 binds to PGC1-α 3’UTR locus and represses it. Although mitochondrial numbers were constant, mitochondrial complexes I, II, and IV and respiratory responses were defective in vitiligo cells. Nanoparticle-coated miR-211 partially augmented the oxygen consumption rate in PIG3V cells. The lower oxygen consumption rate, changes in lipid and metabolite profiles, and increased reactive oxygen species production observed in vitiligo cells appear to be partly due to abnormal regulation of miR-211 and its target genes. These genes represent potential biomarkers and therapeutic targets in human vitiligo.

Keywords: metabolism, microRNA, mitochondria, vitiligo

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18 Physical Fitness Factors of School Badminton Players in Kandy District

Authors: P. Cinthuja, J. A. O. A Jayakody, M. P. M. Perera, W. V. D. N. Weerarathna, S.E. Nirosha, D. K. D. C. Indeewari, T. Kaethieswaran, S. B. Adikari

Abstract:

The aims of the study was to measure physical fitness parameters of school badminton players in the Kandy district and determine the factors contributing to improve the physical fitness. Height, weight, handgrip was measured and sit and reach test, shoulder flexibility test, standing long jump test, 20m sprint speed test, agility T-test and 20 m multistage shuttle run test were performed on 183 school badminton players. Linear regression and correlation tests were performed using body mass index, practiced duration, age category, level of performance, additional sports involvement as independent variables and physical fitness parameter as dependent variables. Results: The present study showed that the upper body power, upper body strength and endurance and speed depended on body mass index both in male and female school badminton players. Speed, agility, flexibility of shoulders, explosive power of shoulder and aerobic endurance depended on the duration of practiced. Furthermore, involvement in additional sports other than badminton did not enhance the performance of badminton players. But it decreased player’s performance by decreasing agility and speed. Age had an effect on the upper body power, explosive power of lower limb, agility and speed both in both males and females. Conclusions: The performance of badminton players could be enhanced by maintaining a proper body mass index. Badminton specific parameter could be improved by increasing the duration of practiced. Involvement in other sports does not give an added advantage to badminton players to improve their performance.

Keywords: agility, Body Mass Index, endurance, badminton

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17 Characterization of the GntR Family Transcriptional Regulator Rv0792c: A Potential Drug Target for Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Authors: Thanusha D. Abeywickrama, Inoka C. Perera, Genji Kurisu

Abstract:

Tuberculosis, considered being as the ninth leading cause of death worldwide, cause from a single infectious agent M. tuberculosis and the drug resistance nature of this bacterium is a continuing threat to the world. Therefore TB preventing treatment is expanding, where this study designed to analyze the regulatory mechanism of GntR transcriptional regulator gene Rv0792c, which lie between several genes codes for some hypothetical proteins, a monooxygenase and an oxidoreductase. The gene encoding Rv0792c was cloned into pET28a and expressed protein was purified to near homogeneity by Nickel affinity chromatography. It was previously reported that the protein binds within the intergenic region (BS region) between Rv0792c gene and monooxygenase (Rv0793). This resulted in binding of three protein molecules with the BS region suggesting tight control of monooxygenase as well as its own gene. Since monooxygenase plays a key role in metabolism, this gene may have a global regulatory role. The natural ligand for this regulator is still under investigation. In relation to the Rv0792 protein structure, a Circular Dichroism (CD) spectrum was carried out to determine its secondary structure elements. Percentage-wise, 17.4% Helix, 21.8% Antiparallel, 5.1% Parallel, 12.3% turn and 43.5% other were revealed from CD spectrum data under room temperature. Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) was conducted to assess the thermal stability of Rv0792, which the melting temperature of protein is 57.2 ± 0.6 °C. The graph of heat capacity (Cp) versus temperature for the best fit was obtained for non-two-state model, which concludes the folding of Rv0792 protein occurs through stable intermediates. Peak area (∆HCal ) and Peak shape (∆HVant ) was calculated from the graph and ∆HCal / ∆HVant was close to 0.5, suggesting dimeric nature of the protein.

Keywords: CD spectrum, DSC analysis, GntR transcriptional regulator, protein structure

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16 An Entrepreneurial Culture Led by Creativity and Innovation: Challenges and Competencies for Sri Lanka as a Middle Income Country

Authors: Tissa Ravinda Perera

Abstract:

An open economic policy was introduced by Sri Lanka in 1977, before many other countries in Asia to align her economy to world economic trends and it was affected indigenous businesses since they had to compete with foreign products, processes, technology, innovations and businesses. The year 2010 was a milestone in Sri Lankan history to achieve the developmental goals when Foxbuisness rated Sri Lanka as the best performing global economy. However, Sri Lanka missed her chances of achieving development with the political and social chaos, consequent the regime change in 2015. This paper argues that to support the development of the country, Sri Lanka must develop an entrepreneurial culture. In this endeavor, creativity and innovation will play a pivotal role to achieve the desired level of development. In this study, it was used secondary data from various local and international sources to understand and explore the existing scenario of Sri Lankan economy, state of entrepreneurial culture and innovation, and challenges and competencies for the development of an entrepreneurial culture in Sri Lanka. The data was collected from secondary sources were depicted in tables in this paper in a meaningful manner. Based on the tables many findings were aroused and conclusions were made to support the argument in this paper. This paper revealed that the development of an entrepreneurial culture has to be associated with creativity and innovation to gain a competitive advantage over the development strategies of other countries. It is exposed that an entrepreneurial culture will help minorities, women and underprivileged societies to empower themselves. This product will help to confront and manage youth unrest which has created anarchy in the country from time to time. Throughout this paper, it was highlighted the past, present and future scenario of Sri Lankan economy along with modification to be done to it through the development of an entrepreneur culture in light of innovation and creativity to achieve the desired level of development.

Keywords: economy, industry, creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial culture

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15 Indoor Air Pollution Effects on Physical Growth of Children under 5 Years from Solid Fuel Combustion

Authors: Nayomi Ranathunga, Priyantha Perera, Sumal Nandasena, Nalini Sathiakumar, Anuradhini Kasthuriratne, Rajitha Wikremasinghe

Abstract:

Solid fuel combustion is an important source of indoor air pollution (IAP) in developing countries that has adverse health impacts particularly in children. This study was conducted to determine the effect of IAP due to solid fuel combustion on physical growth of children under five in a Sri Lankan setting. A prospective study was conducted in a mixed population comprising urban and semi urban residents. The study included 240 children under 5 who were permanent residents of the area. Physical growth was assessed by measuring anthropometric indices based on the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines and standards. Exposure levels were defined according to the main type of fuel used for cooking at home: children residing in households using biomass fuel or kerosene as the main type of fuel for cooking were classified as the “high exposure” group and children resident in households using liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) or electricity for cooking were classified as the “low exposure” group. Sixty percent of the children were classified as from the “high” exposure group and 40% of the children were classified as from the “low” exposure group; 54% of the children were male. At baseline, the prevalence of wasting was 17.1% and the prevalence of stunting was 10.4%; the mean z-score for weight for height was - 0.85, weight for age was - 0.46 and height for age was -0.38. At baseline, children from the “high” exposure group had a significantly lower mean weight for height z-score (p=0.02) and a mean height for age z-score (p=0.001) as compared to children from the “low” exposure group after adjusting for confounding factors such as father’s education, mother’s education and family income. Poor maternal education was significantly associated with lower height for age z-scores (p=0.04) after adjusting for exposure status. IAP due to combustion of biomass fuel leads to chronic malnutrition.

Keywords: children, growth, indoor air pollution, solid fuel

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14 Remote Vital Signs Monitoring in Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Using a Digital Camera

Authors: Fatema-Tuz-Zohra Khanam, Ali Al-Naji, Asanka G. Perera, Kim Gibson, Javaan Chahl

Abstract:

Conventional contact-based vital signs monitoring sensors such as pulse oximeters or electrocardiogram (ECG) may cause discomfort, skin damage, and infections, particularly in neonates with fragile, sensitive skin. Therefore, remote monitoring of the vital sign is desired in both clinical and non-clinical settings to overcome these issues. Camera-based vital signs monitoring is a recent technology for these applications with many positive attributes. However, there are still limited camera-based studies on neonates in a clinical setting. In this study, the heart rate (HR) and respiratory rate (RR) of eight infants at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in Flinders Medical Centre were remotely monitored using a digital camera applying color and motion-based computational methods. The region-of-interest (ROI) was efficiently selected by incorporating an image decomposition method. Furthermore, spatial averaging, spectral analysis, band-pass filtering, and peak detection were also used to extract both HR and RR. The experimental results were validated with the ground truth data obtained from an ECG monitor and showed a strong correlation using the Pearson correlation coefficient (PCC) 0.9794 and 0.9412 for HR and RR, respectively. The RMSE between camera-based data and ECG data for HR and RR were 2.84 beats/min and 2.91 breaths/min, respectively. A Bland Altman analysis of the data also showed a close correlation between both data sets with a mean bias of 0.60 beats/min and 1 breath/min, and the lower and upper limit of agreement -4.9 to + 6.1 beats/min and -4.4 to +6.4 breaths/min for both HR and RR, respectively. Therefore, video camera imaging may replace conventional contact-based monitoring in NICU and has potential applications in other contexts such as home health monitoring.

Keywords: neonates, NICU, digital camera, heart rate, respiratory rate, image decomposition

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