Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 11

Search results for: Eugen Mandrescu

11 Building 1-Well-Covered Graphs by Corona, Join, and Rooted Product of Graphs

Authors: Vadim E. Levit, Eugen Mandrescu


A graph is well-covered if all its maximal independent sets are of the same size. A well-covered graph is 1-well-covered if deletion of every vertex of the graph leaves it well-covered. It is known that a graph without isolated vertices is 1-well-covered if and only if every two disjoint independent sets are included in two disjoint maximum independent sets. Well-covered graphs are related to combinatorial commutative algebra (e.g., every Cohen-Macaulay graph is well-covered, while each Gorenstein graph without isolated vertices is 1-well-covered). Our intent is to construct several infinite families of 1-well-covered graphs using the following known graph operations: corona, join, and rooted product of graphs. Adopting some known techniques used to advantage for well-covered graphs, one can prove that: if the graph G has no isolated vertices, then the corona of G and H is 1-well-covered if and only if H is a complete graph of order two at least; the join of the graphs G and H is 1-well-covered if and only if G and H have the same independence number and both are 1-well-covered; if H satisfies the property that every three pairwise disjoint independent sets are included in three pairwise disjoint maximum independent sets, then the rooted product of G and H is 1-well-covered, for every graph G. These findings show not only how to generate some more families of 1-well-covered graphs, but also that, to this aim, sometimes, one may use graphs that are not necessarily 1-well-covered.

Keywords: maximum independent set, corona, concatenation, join, well-covered graph

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10 A Robust Implementation of a Building Resources Access Rights Management System

Authors: Eugen Neagoe, Victor Balanica


A Smart Building Controller (SBC) is a server software that offers secured access to a pool of building specific resources, executes monitoring tasks and performs automatic administration of a building, thus optimizing the exploitation cost and maximizing comfort. This paper brings to discussion the issues that arise with the secure exploitation of the SBC administered resources and proposes a technical solution to implement a robust secure access system based on roles, individual rights and privileges (special rights).

Keywords: smart building controller, software security, access rights, access authorization

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9 On the Effect of Immigration on Destination: Country Corruption

Authors: Eugen Dimant, Tim Krieger, Margarete Redlin


This paper analyzes the impact of migration on destination-country corruption levels. Capitalizing on a comprehensive dataset consisting of annual immigration stocks of OECD coun-tries from 207 countries of origin for the period 1984-2008, we explore different channels through which corruption might migrate. We employ different estimation methods using fixed effects and Tobit regressions in order to validate our findings. What is more, we also address the issue of endogeneity by using the Difference-Generalized Method of Moments (GMM) estimator. Independent of the econometric methodology we consistently find that while general migration has an insignificant effect on the destination country’s corruption level, immigration from corruption-ridden origin countries boosts corruption in the destination country. Our findings provide a more profound understanding of the economic implications associated with migration flows.

Keywords: corruption, migration, impact of migration, destination-country corruption

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8 An ANN-Based Predictive Model for Diagnosis and Forecasting of Hypertension

Authors: Obe Olumide Olayinka, Victor Balanica, Eugen Neagoe


The effects of hypertension are often lethal thus its early detection and prevention is very important for everybody. In this paper, a neural network (NN) model was developed and trained based on a dataset of hypertension causative parameters in order to forecast the likelihood of occurrence of hypertension in patients. Our research goal was to analyze the potential of the presented NN to predict, for a period of time, the risk of hypertension or the risk of developing this disease for patients that are or not currently hypertensive. The results of the analysis for a given patient can support doctors in taking pro-active measures for averting the occurrence of hypertension such as recommendations regarding the patient behavior in order to lower his hypertension risk. Moreover, the paper envisages a set of three example scenarios in order to determine the age when the patient becomes hypertensive, i.e. determine the threshold for hypertensive age, to analyze what happens if the threshold hypertensive age is set to a certain age and the weight of the patient if being varied, and, to set the ideal weight for the patient and analyze what happens with the threshold of hypertensive age.

Keywords: neural network, hypertension, data set, training set, supervised learning

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7 HPLC-UV Screening of Legal (Caffeine and Yohimbine) and Illegal (Ephedrine and Sibutramine) Substances from Weight Loss Dietary Supplements for Athletes

Authors: Amelia Tero-Vescan, Camil-Eugen Vari, Laura Ciulea, Cristina Filip, Silvia Imre


A HPLC –UV method for the identification of ephedrine (EPH), sibutramine (SB), yohimbine (Y) and caffeine (CF) was developed. Separation was performed on a Kromasil 100-RP8, 150 mm x 4.6 mm, 5 mm column equipped with a precolumn Kromasil RP 8. Mobile phase was a gradient of 80-35 % sodium dihydrogen phosphate pH=5 with NH4OH and acetonitrile over 15 minutes time of analysis. Based on the responses of 113 athletes about dietary supplements (DS) consumed for "fat burning" and weight loss which have a legal status in Romania, 28 supplements have been selected and investigated for their content in CF, Y, legal substances, and SB, EPH (prohibited substances in DS). The method allows quantitative determination of the four substances in a short analysis time and with minimum cost. The presence of SB and EPH in the analyzed DS was not detected while the content in CF and Y considering the dosage recommended by the manufacturer does not affect the health of the consumers. DS labeling (plant extracts with CF and Y content) allows manufacturers to avoid declaring correct and exact amounts per pharmaceutical form (pure CF or equivalent and Y, respectively).

Keywords: dietary supplements, sibutramine, ephedrine, yohimbine, caffeine, HPLC

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6 Monitoring of the Chillon Viaducts after Rehabilitation with Ultra High Performance Fiber Reinforced Cement-Based Composite

Authors: Henar Martín-Sanz García, Eleni Chatzi, Eugen Brühwiler


Located on the shore of Geneva Lake, in Switzerland, the Chillon Viaducts are two parallel structures consisted of post-tensioned concrete box girders, with a total length of 2 kilometers and 100m spans. Built in 1969, the bridges currently accommodate a traffic load of 50.000 vehicles per day, thereby holding a key role both in terms of historic value as well as socio-economic significance. Although several improvements have been carried out in the past two decades, recent inspections demonstrate an Alkali-Aggregate reaction in the concrete deck and piers reducing the concrete strength. In order to prevent further expansion of this issue, a layer of 40 mm of Ultra High Performance Fiber Reinforced cement-based Composite (UHPFRC) (incorporating rebars) was casted over the slabs, acting as a waterproof membrane and providing significant increase in resistance of the bridge structure by composite UHPFRC – RC composite action in particular of the deck slab. After completing the rehabilitation works, a Structural Monitoring campaign was installed on the deck slab in one representative span, based on accelerometers, strain gauges, thermal and humidity sensors. This campaign seeks to reveal information on the behavior of UHPFRC-concrete composite systems, such as increase in stiffness, fatigue strength, durability and long-term performance. Consequently, the structural monitoring is expected to last for at least three years. A first insight of the analyzed results from the initial months of measurements is presented herein, along with future improvements or necessary changes on the deployment.

Keywords: composite materials, rehabilitation, structural health monitoring, UHPFRC

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5 Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer of Cephalic Extremity – Clinical and Histological Aspects

Authors: Razvan Mercut, Mihaela Ionescu, Vlad Parvanescu, Razvan Ghita, Tudor-Gabriel Caragea, Cristina Simionescu, Marius-Eugen Ciurea


Introduction: Over the past years, the incidence of non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) has continuously increased, being one of the most commonly diagnosed carcinomasofthe cephalic extremity. NMSC regroups basal cell carcinoma (BCC), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), Merkel cell carcinoma, cutaneous lymphoma, and sarcoma. The most common forms are BCC and SCC, both still implying a significant level of morbidity due to local invasion (especially BCC), even if the overall death rates are declining. The objective of our study was the evaluation of clinical and histological aspects of NMSC for a group of patients with BCC and SCC, from Craiova, a south-western major city in Romania. Materialand method: Our study lot comprised 65 patients, with an almost equal distribution of sexes, and ages between 23-91 years old (mean value±standard deviation62.61±16.67), all treated within the Clinic of Plastic Surgery and Reconstructive Microsurgery, Clinical Emergency County Hospital Craiova, Romania, between 2019-2020. In order to determine the main morphological characteristics of both studied cancers, we used paraffin embedding techniques, with various staining methods:hematoxylin-eosin, Masson's trichrome stain with aniline blue, and Periodic acid-schiffAlcian Blue. The statistical study was completed using Microsoft Excel (Microsoft Corp., Redmond, WA, USA), with XLSTAT (Addinsoft SARL, Paris, France). Results: The overall results of our study indicate that BCC accounts for 67.69% of all NMSC forms; SCC covers 27.69%, while 4.62% are representedby other forms. The most frequent site is the nose for BCC (27.69%, 18 patients), being followed by preauricular regions, forehead, and periorbital areas. For patients with SCC, tumors were mainly located at lips level (66.67%, 12 patients). The analysis of NMSC histological forms indicated that nodular BCC is predominant (45.45%, 20 patients), as well as ulcero-vegetant SCC (38.89%, 7 patients). We have not identified any topographic characteristics or NMSC forms significantly related to age or sex. Conclusions: The most frequent NMSC form identified for our study lot was BCC. The preferred location was the nose for BCC. For SCC, the oral cavity is the most frequent anatomical site, especially the lips level. Nodular BCC and ulcero-vegetant SCC were the most commonly identified histological types. Our findings emphasize the need for periodic screening, in order to improve prevention and early treatment for these malignancies.

Keywords: non-melanoma skin cancer, basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, histological

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4 Storms Dynamics in the Black Sea in the Context of the Climate Changes

Authors: Eugen Rusu


The objective of the work proposed is to perform an analysis of the wave conditions in the Black Sea basin. This is especially focused on the spatial and temporal occurrences and on the dynamics of the most extreme storms in the context of the climate changes. A numerical modelling system, based on the spectral phase averaged wave model SWAN, has been implemented and validated against both in situ measurements and remotely sensed data, all along the sea. Moreover, a successive correction method for the assimilation of the satellite data has been associated with the wave modelling system. This is based on the optimal interpolation of the satellite data. Previous studies show that the process of data assimilation improves considerably the reliability of the results provided by the modelling system. This especially concerns the most sensitive cases from the point of view of the accuracy of the wave predictions, as the extreme storm situations are. Following this numerical approach, it has to be highlighted that the results provided by the wave modelling system above described are in general in line with those provided by some similar wave prediction systems implemented in enclosed or semi-enclosed sea basins. Simulations of this wave modelling system with data assimilation have been performed for the 30-year period 1987-2016. Considering this database, the next step was to analyze the intensity and the dynamics of the higher storms encountered in this period. According to the data resulted from the model simulations, the western side of the sea is considerably more energetic than the rest of the basin. In this western region, regular strong storms provide usually significant wave heights greater than 8m. This may lead to maximum wave heights even greater than 15m. Such regular strong storms may occur several times in one year, usually in the wintertime, or in late autumn, and it can be noticed that their frequency becomes higher in the last decade. As regards the case of the most extreme storms, significant wave heights greater than 10m and maximum wave heights close to 20m (and even greater) may occur. Such extreme storms, which in the past were noticed only once in four or five years, are more recent to be faced almost every year in the Black Sea, and this seems to be a consequence of the climate changes. The analysis performed included also the dynamics of the monthly and annual significant wave height maxima as well as the identification of the most probable spatial and temporal occurrences of the extreme storm events. Finally, it can be concluded that the present work provides valuable information related to the characteristics of the storm conditions and on their dynamics in the Black Sea. This environment is currently subjected to high navigation traffic and intense offshore and nearshore activities and the strong storms that systematically occur may produce accidents with very serious consequences.

Keywords: Black Sea, extreme storms, SWAN simulations, waves

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3 Development of Metal-Organic Frameworks-Type Hybrid Functionalized Materials for Selective Uranium Extraction

Authors: Damien Rinsant, Eugen Andreiadis, Michael Carboni, Daniel Meyer


Different types of materials have been developed for the solid/liquid uranium extraction processes, such as functionalized organic polymers, hybrid silica or inorganic adsorbents. In general, these materials exhibit a moderate affinity for uranyl ions and poor selectivity against impurities like iron, vanadium or molybdenum. Moreover, the structural organization deficiency of these materials generates ion diffusion issues inside the material. Therefore, the aim of our study is to developed efficient and organized materials, stable in the acid media encountered in uranium extraction processes. Metal organic frameworks (MOFs) are hybrid crystalline materials consisting of an inorganic part (cluster or metal ions) and tailored organic linkers connected via coordination bonds. These hierarchical materials have exceptional surface area, thermal stability and a large variety of tunable structures. However, due to the reversibility of constitutive coordination bonds, MOFs have moderate stability in strongly complexing or acidic media. Only few of them are known to be stable in aqueous media and only one example is described in strong acidic media. However, these conditions are very often encountered in the environmental pollution remediation of mine wastewaters. To tackle the challenge of developing MOFs adapted for uranium extraction from acid mine waters, we have investigated the stability of several materials. To ensure a good stability we have synthetized and characterized different materials based on highly coordinated metal clusters, such as LnOFs and Zirconium based materials. Among the latter, the UiO family shows a great stability in sulfuric acid media even in the presence of 1.4 M sodium sulfate at pH 2. However, the stability in phosphoric media is reduced due to the high affinity between zirconium and phosphate ligand. Based on these results, we have developed a tertiary amine functionalized MOF denoted UiO-68-NMe2 particularly adapted for the extraction of anionic uranyl (VI) sulfate complexes mainly present in the acid mine solutions. The adsorption capacity of the material has been determined upon varying total sulfate concentration, contact time and uranium concentration. The extraction tests put in evidence different phenomena due to the complexity of the extraction media and the interaction between the MOF and sulfate anion. Finally, the extraction mechanisms and the interaction between uranyl and the MOF structure have been investigated. The functionalized material UiO-68-NMe2 has been characterized in the presence and absence of uranium by FT-IR, UV and Raman techniques. Moreover, the stability of the protonated amino functionalized MOF has been evaluated. The synthesis, characterization and evaluation of this type of hybrid material, particularly adapted for uranium extraction in sulfuric acid media by an anionic exchange mechanism, paved the way for the development of metal organic frameworks functionalized by different other chelating motifs, such as bifunctional ligands showing an enhanced affinity and selectivity for uranium in acid and complexing media. Work in this direction is currently in progress.

Keywords: extraction, MOF, ligand, uranium

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2 Optical Vortex in Asymmetric Arcs of Rotating Intensity

Authors: Mona Mihailescu, Rebeca Tudor, Irina A. Paun, Cristian Kusko, Eugen I. Scarlat, Mihai Kusko


Specific intensity distributions in the laser beams are required in many fields: optical communications, material processing, microscopy, optical tweezers. In optical communications, the information embedded in specific beams and the superposition of multiple beams can be used to increase the capacity of the communication channels, employing spatial modulation as an additional degree of freedom, besides already available polarization and wavelength multiplexing. In this regard, optical vortices present interest due to their potential to carry independent data which can be multiplexed at the transmitter and demultiplexed at the receiver. Also, in the literature were studied their combinations: 1) axial or perpendicular superposition of multiple optical vortices or 2) with other laser beam types: Bessel, Airy. Optical vortices, characterized by stationary ring-shape intensity and rotating phase, are achieved using computer generated holograms (CGH) obtained by simulating the interference between a tilted plane wave and a wave passing through a helical phase object. Here, we propose a method to combine information through the reunion of two CGHs. One is obtained using the helical phase distribution, characterized by its topological charge, m. The other is obtained using conical phase distribution, characterized by its radial factor, r0. Each CGH is obtained using plane wave with different tilts: km and kr for CGH generated from helical phase object and from conical phase object, respectively. These reunions of two CGHs are calculated to be phase optical elements, addressed on the liquid crystal display of a spatial light modulator, to optically process the incident beam for investigations of the diffracted intensity pattern in far field. For parallel reunion of two CGHs and high values of the ratio between km and kr, the bright ring from the first diffraction order, specific for optical vortices, is changed in an asymmetric intensity pattern: a number of circle arcs. Both diffraction orders (+1 and -1) are asymmetrical relative to each other. In different planes along the optical axis, it is observed that this asymmetric intensity pattern rotates around its centre: in the +1 diffraction order the rotation is anticlockwise and in the -1 diffraction order, the rotation is clockwise. The relation between m and r0 controls the diameter of the circle arcs and the ratio between km and kr controls the number of arcs. For perpendicular reunion of the two CGHs and low values of the ratio between km and kr, the optical vortices are multiplied and focalized in different planes, depending on the radial parameter. The first diffraction order contains information about both phase objects. It is incident on the phase masks placed at the receiver, computed using the opposite values for topological charge or for the radial parameter and displayed successively. In all, the proposed method is exploited in terms of constructive parameters, for the possibility offered by the combination of different types of beams which can be used in robust optical communications.

Keywords: asymmetrical diffraction orders, computer generated holograms, conical phase distribution, optical vortices, spatial light modulator

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1 Full Characterization of Heterogeneous Antibody Samples under Denaturing and Native Conditions on a Hybrid Quadrupole-Orbitrap Mass Spectrometer

Authors: Rowan Moore, Kai Scheffler, Eugen Damoc, Jennifer Sutton, Aaron Bailey, Stephane Houel, Simon Cubbon, Jonathan Josephs


Purpose: MS analysis of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) at the protein and peptide levels is critical during development and production of biopharmaceuticals. The compositions of current generation therapeutic proteins are often complex due to various modifications which may affect efficacy. Intact proteins analyzed by MS are detected in higher charge states that also provide more complexity in mass spectra. Protein analysis in native or native-like conditions with zero or minimal organic solvent and neutral or weakly acidic pH decreases charge state value resulting in mAb detection at higher m/z ranges with more spatial resolution. Methods: Three commercially available mAbs were used for all experiments. Intact proteins were desalted online using size exclusion chromatography (SEC) or reversed phase chromatography coupled on-line with a mass spectrometer. For streamlined use of the LC- MS platform we used a single SEC column and alternately selected specific mobile phases to perform separations in either denaturing or native-like conditions: buffer A (20 % ACN, 0.1 % FA) with Buffer B (100 mM ammonium acetate). For peptide analysis mAbs were proteolytically digested with and without prior reduction and alkylation. The mass spectrometer used for all experiments was a commercially available Thermo Scientific™ hybrid Quadrupole-Orbitrap™ mass spectrometer, equipped with the new BioPharma option which includes a new High Mass Range (HMR) mode that allows for improved high mass transmission and mass detection up to 8000 m/z. Results: We have analyzed the profiles of three mAbs under reducing and native conditions by direct infusion with offline desalting and with on-line desalting via size exclusion and reversed phase type columns. The presence of high salt under denaturing conditions was found to influence the observed charge state envelope and impact mass accuracy after spectral deconvolution. The significantly lower charge states observed under native conditions improves the spatial resolution of protein signals and has significant benefits for the analysis of antibody mixtures, e.g. lysine variants, degradants or sequence variants. This type of analysis requires the detection of masses beyond the standard mass range ranging up to 6000 m/z requiring the extended capabilities available in the new HMR mode. We have compared each antibody sample that was analyzed individually with mixtures in various relative concentrations. For this type of analysis, we observed that apparent native structures persist and ESI is benefited by the addition of low amounts of acetonitrile and formic acid in combination with the ammonium acetate-buffered mobile phase. For analyses on the peptide level we analyzed reduced/alkylated, and non-reduced proteolytic digests of the individual antibodies separated via reversed phase chromatography aiming to retrieve as much information as possible regarding sequence coverage, disulfide bridges, post-translational modifications such as various glycans, sequence variants, and their relative quantification. All data acquired were submitted to a single software package for analysis aiming to obtain a complete picture of the molecules analyzed. Here we demonstrate the capabilities of the mass spectrometer to fully characterize homogeneous and heterogeneous therapeutic proteins on one single platform. Conclusion: Full characterization of heterogeneous intact protein mixtures by improved mass separation on a quadrupole-Orbitrap™ mass spectrometer with extended capabilities has been demonstrated.

Keywords: disulfide bond analysis, intact analysis, native analysis, mass spectrometry, monoclonal antibodies, peptide mapping, post-translational modifications, sequence variants, size exclusion chromatography, therapeutic protein analysis, UHPLC

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