Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 27

Search results for: Kgabo Martha Pofu

27 Post-Application Effects of Selected Management Strategies to the Citrus Nematode (Tylenchulus semipenetrans) Population Densities

Authors: Phatu William Mashela, Pontsho Edmund Tseke, Kgabo Martha Pofu

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‘Inconsistent results’ in nematode suppression post-application of botanical-based products created credibility concerns. Relative to untreated control, sampling for nematodes post-application of botanical-based products suggested significant increases in nematode population densities. ‘Inconsistent results’ were confirmed in Tylenchulus semipenetrans on Citrus jambhiri seedlings when sampling was carried out at 120 days post-application of a granular Nemarioc-AG phytonematicide. The objective of this study was to determine post-application effects of untreated control, Nemarioc-AG phytonematicide and aldicarb to T. semipenetrans population densities on C. jambhiri seedlings. Two hundred and ten seedlings were each inoculated with 10000 T. semipenetrans eggs and second-stage juveniles (J2) in plastic pots containing 2700 ml growing mixture. A week after inoculation, seedlings were equally split and subjected to once-off treatment of 2 g aldicarb, 2 g Nemarioc-AG phytonematicide and untreated control. Five seedlings from each group were randomly placed on greenhouse benches to serve as a sampling block, with a total of 14 blocks. The entire block was sampled weekly and assessed for final nematode population density (Pf). After the final assessment, post-regression of untreated Pf to increasing sampling intervals exhibited positive quadratic relations, with the model explaining 90% associations, with optimum Pf of 13804 eggs and J2 at six weeks post-application. In contrast, treated Pf and increasing sampling interval exhibited negative quadratic relations, with the model explaining 95% and 92% associations in phytonematicide and aldicarb, respectively. In the phytonematicide, Pf was 974 eggs and J2, whereas that in aldicarb was 2205 eggs and J2 at six weeks. In conclusion, temporal cyclic nematode population growth provided an empirically-based explanation of ‘inconsistent results’ in nematode suppression post-application of the two nematode management strategies.

Keywords: nematode management, residual effect, slow decline of citrus, the citrus nematode

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26 Resistance to the South African Root-Knot Nematode Population Densities in Artemisia annua: An Anti-Malaria Ethnomedicinal Plant

Authors: Kgabo Pofu, Hintsa Araya, Dean Oelofse, Sonja Venter, Christian Du Plooy, Phatu Mashela

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Nematode resistance to the tropical root-knot (Meloidogyne species) nematodes is one of the most preferred nematode management strategies in development of smallholder resource-poor farming systems. Due to its pharmacological and ethnomedicinal applications, Artemisia annua is one of the underutilised crops that have attracted attention of policy-makers in rural agrarian development in South Africa. However, the successful introduction of this crop in smallholder resource-poor farming systems could be upset by the widespread aggressive Meloidogyne species, which have limited management options. The objective of this study therefore was to determine the degree of nematode resistance to the South African M. incognita and M. javanica population densities on A. annua seedlings. Uniform three-week-old seedlings in pots containing pasteurised growing medium under greenhouse conditions were inoculated using a series of eggs and second-stage juveniles of two Meloidogyne species in separate trials. At 56 days after inoculation, treatments were highly significant on reproductive factor (RF) for M. incognita and M. javanica on A. annua, contributing 87 and 89% in total treatment variation of the variables, respectively. At all levels of inoculation, RF values for M. incognita (0.17-0.79) and M. javanica (0.02-0.29) were below unity, without any noticeable root galls. Infection of A. annua by both Meloidogyne species had no significant effects on growth variables. In conclusion, A. annua seedlings are resistant to the South African M. incognita and M. javanica population densities and could therefore be explored further for use in smallholder resource-poor farming systems.

Keywords: Medicinal Plants, ethnomedicial plants, underutilised crops, plant parasitic nematodes

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25 Transcultural Study on Social Intelligence

Authors: Martha Serrano-Arias, Martha Frías-Armenta

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Significant results have been found both supporting universality of emotion recognition and cultural background influence. Thus, the aim of this research was to test a Mexican version of the MTSI in different cultures to find differences in their performance. The MTSI-Mx assesses through a scenario approach were subjects must evaluate real persons. Two target persons were used for the construction, a man (FS) and a woman (AD). The items were grouped in four variables: Picture, Video, and FS and AD scenarios. The test was applied to 201 students from Mexico and Germany. T-test for picture and FS scenario show no significance. Video and AD had a significance at the 5% level. Results show slight differences between cultures, although a more comprehensive research is needed to conclude which culture can perform better in this kind of assessments.

Keywords: Emotion recognition, Social Intelligence, MTSI, transcultural study

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24 The Importance of Intellectual Property for Universities of Technology in South Africa: Challenges Faced and Proposed Way Forward

Authors: Martha E. Ikome, John M. Ikome

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Intellectual property should be a day-to-day business decision due to its value, but increasingly, a number of institution are still not aware of the importance. Intellectual Property (IP) and its value are often not adequately appreciated. In the increasingly knowledge-driven economy, IP is a key consideration in day-to-day business decisions because new ideas and products appear almost daily in the market, which results in continuous innovation and research. Therefore, this paper will focus on the importance of IP for universities of technology and also further demonstrates how IP can become an economic tool and the challenges faced by these universities in implementing an IP system.

Keywords: Challenges, Intellectual Property, Institutions, Protection

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23 A Classical Method of Optimizing Manufacturing Systems Using a Number of Industrial Engineering Techniques

Authors: Martha E. Ikome, John M. Ikome, Therese Van Wyk

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Productivity optimization of a company can significantly increase the company’s output and productivity which can be in the form of corrective actions of ineffective activities, process simplification, and reduction of variations, responsiveness, and reduction of set-up-time which are all under the classification of waste within the manufacturing environment. Deriving a means to eliminate a number of these issues has a key importance for manufacturing organization. This paper focused on a number of industrial engineering techniques which include a cause and effect diagram, to identify and optimize the method or systems being used. Based on our results, it shows that there are a number of variations within the production processes that can significantly disrupt the expected output.

Keywords: Optimization, Productivity, fishbone, diagram

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22 An Application of a Feedback Control System to Minimize Unforeseen Disruption in a Paper Manufacturing Industry in South Africa

Authors: Martha E. Ndeley

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Operation management is the key element within the manufacturing process. However, during this process, there are a number of unforeseen disruptions that causes the process to a standstill which are, machine breakdown, employees absenteeism, improper scheduling. When this happens, it forces the shop flow to a rescheduling process and these strategy reschedules only a limited part of the initial schedule to match up with the pre-schedule at some point with the objective to create a new schedule that is reliable which in the long run gets disrupted. In this work, we have developed feedback control system that minimizes any form of disruption before the impact becomes severe, the model was tested in a paper manufacturing industries and the results revealed that, if the disruption is minimized at the initial state, the impact becomes unnoticeable.

Keywords: Scheduling, Machine, absenteeism, disruption

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21 Experimental Networks Synchronization of Chua’s Circuit in Different Topologies

Authors: Rosa Martha Lopez-Gutierrez, Manuel Meranza-Castillon, Rolando Diaz-Castillo, Adrian Arellano-Delgado, Cesar Cruz-Hernandez

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In this work, we deal with experimental network synchronization of chaotic nodes with different topologies. Our approach is based on complex system theory, and we use a master-slave configuration to couple the nodes in the networks. In particular, we design and implement electronically complex dynamical networks composed by nine coupled chaotic Chua’s circuits with topologies: in nearest-neighbor, small-world, open ring, star, and global. Also, network synchronization is evaluated according to a particular coupling strength for each topology. This study is important by the possible applications to private transmission of information in a chaotic communication network of multiple users.

Keywords: Complex Networks, Chua's circuit, experimental synchronization, multiple users

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20 Collective Movement between Two Lego EV3 Mobile Robots

Authors: Rosa Martha Lopez-Gutierrez, Jose Antonio Michel-Macarty, Cesar Cruz-Hernandez, Luis Fernando Pinedo-Lomeli, Liliana Cardoza-Avendaño, Humberto Cruz-Hernandez

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Robots are working in industry and services performing repetitive or dangerous tasks, however, when flexible movement capabilities and complex tasks are required, the use of many robots is needed. Also, productivity can be improved by reducing times to perform tasks. In the last years, a lot of effort has been invested in research and development of collective control of mobile robots. This interest is justified as there are many advantages when two or more robots are collaborating in a particular task. Some examples are: cleaning toxic waste, transportation and manipulation of objects, exploration, and surveillance, search and rescue. In this work a study of collective movements of mobile robots is presented. A solution of collisions avoidance is developed. This solution is levered on a communication implementation that allows coordinate movements in different paths were avoiding obstacles.

Keywords: Communication, Robots, Synchronization, legos

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19 Design of Optimal Proportional Integral Derivative Attitude Controller for an Uncoupled Flexible Satellite Using Particle Swarm Optimization

Authors: Jibril D. Jiya, Martha C. Orazulume

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Flexible satellites are equipped with various appendages which vibrate under the influence of any excitation and make the attitude of the satellite to be unstable. Therefore, the system must be able to adjust to balance the effect of these appendages in order to point accurately and satisfactorily which is one of the most important problems in satellite design. Proportional Integral Derivative (PID) Controller is simple to design and computationally efficient to implement which is used to stabilize the effect of these flexible appendages. However, manual turning of the PID is time consuming, waste energy and money. Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) is used to tune the parameters of PID Controller. Simulation results obtained show that PSO tuned PID Controller is able to re-orient the spacecraft attitude as well as dampen the effect of mechanical resonance and yields better performance when compared with manually tuned PID Controller.

Keywords: Particle Swarm Optimization, Attitude Control, Flexible Satellite, PID Controller and Optimization

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18 The Capabilities Approach as a Future Alternative to Neoliberal Higher Education in the MENA Region

Authors: Ranya Elkhayat

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This paper aims at offering a futures study for higher education in the Middle East. Paying special attention to the negative impacts of neoliberalism, the paper will demonstrate how higher education is now commodified, corporatized and how arts and humanities are eschewed in favor of science and technology. This conceptual paper argues against the neoliberal agenda and aims at providing an alternative exemplified in the Capabilities Approach with special reference to Martha Nussbaum’s theory. The paper is divided into four main parts: the current state of higher education under neoliberal values, a prediction of the conditions of higher education in the near future, the future of higher education using the theoretical framework of the Capabilities Approach, and finally, some areas of concern regarding the approach. The implications of the study demonstrate that Nussbaum’s Capabilities Approach will ensure that the values of education are preserved while avoiding the pitfalls of neoliberalism.

Keywords: Higher Education, capabilities approach, mena, education future

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17 Constraint-Directed Techniques for Transport Scheduling with Capacity Restrictions of Automotive Manufacturing Components

Authors: Martha Ndeley, John Ikome

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In this paper, we expand the scope of constraint-directed techniques to deal with the case of transportation schedule with capacity restrictions where the scheduling problem includes alternative activities. That is, not only does the scheduling problem consist of determining when an activity is to be executed, but also determining which set of alternative activities is to be executed at all level of transportation from input to output. Such problems encompass both alternative resource problems and alternative process plan problems. We formulate a constraint-based representation of alternative activities to model problems containing such choices. We then extend existing constraint-directed scheduling heuristic commitment techniques and propagators to reason directly about the fact that an activity does not necessarily have to exist in a final transportation schedule without being completed. Tentative results show that an algorithm using a novel texture-based heuristic commitment technique propagators achieves the best overall performance of the techniques tested.

Keywords: Production, Transportation, Scheduling, Integrated

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16 Improving Knowledge Management Practices in the South African Healthcare System

Authors: Kgabo H. Badimo, Sheryl Buckley

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Knowledge is increasingly recognised in this, the knowledge era, as a strategic resource, by public sector organisations, in view of the public sector reform initiatives. People and knowledge play a vital role in attaining improved organisational performance and high service quality. Many government departments in the public sector have started to realise the importance of knowledge management in streamlining their operations and processes. This study focused on knowledge management in the public healthcare service organisations, where the concept of service provider competitiveness pales to insignificance, considering the huge challenges emanating from the healthcare and public sector reforms. Many government departments are faced with challenges of improving organisational performance and service delivery, improving accountability, making informed decisions, capturing the knowledge of the aging workforce, and enhancing partnerships with stakeholders. The purpose of this paper is to examine the knowledge management practices of the Gauteng Department of Health in South Africa, in order to understand how knowledge management practices influence improvement in organisational performance and healthcare service delivery. This issue is explored through a review of literature on dominant views on knowledge management and healthcare service delivery, as well as results of interviews with, and questionnaire responses from, the general staff of the Gauteng Department of Health. Web-based questionnaires, face-to-face interviews and organisational documents were used to collect data. The data were analysed using both the quantitative and qualitative methods. The central question investigated was: To what extent can the conditions required for successful knowledge management be observed, in order to improve organisational performance and healthcare service delivery in the Gauteng Department of Health. The findings showed that the elements of knowledge management capabilities investigated in this study, namely knowledge creation, knowledge sharing and knowledge application, have a positive, significant relationship with all measures of organisational performance and healthcare service delivery. These findings thus indicate that by employing knowledge management principles, the Gauteng Department of Health could improve its ability to achieve its operational goals and objectives, and solve organisational and healthcare challenges, thereby improving organisational.

Keywords: Knowledge Management, Public Sector, Healthcare Service Delivery, public healthcare

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15 Reading the Memoirs of American Caregiving Daughters: A Care-Focused Feminist Approach

Authors: Su-Lin Yu

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This paper will explore how gender and care discourse are intersected, reformulated and contested in American daughters’ caregiving memoirs. In particular, it will attempt to show how gender structure has worked to regulate a daughter’s response to her mother’s illness. In other words, how do certain cultural notions and class difference affect the ways in which the daughter enacts her caregiving response to her mother’s illness? What is the interrelation of female subjectivity and care practice? To understand care and gender politics in the memoirs, this paper will engage in close readings of five texts: Sandra Bullock Simith’s Trading Places: Becoming My Mother’s Mother: A Daughter’s Memoir (2015),Martha Stettinius’s Inside the Dementia Epidemic: A Daughter’s Memoir (2012), Patricia Thompson Collamer’s Grace on the Ledge: a Caregiver's Memoir, Judith Henry’s The Dutiful Daughter's Guide to Caregiving: A Practical Memoir (2015), and The Daughter's Dilemma: A Survival Guide to Caring for an Aging, Abusive Parent by Emily Wanderer Cohen (2018). By analyzing these texts, this paper will show why adult daughters become the primary caregivers, how gender norms and care practices influence a daughter’s thoughts and actions, and how it affects her self-understanding. Taken as a whole, then, the paper will provide an important examination not only of care and gender politics, but also a contribution to the intersecting discourses of illness, death, and mother-daughter relationship.

Keywords: Gender Politics, care ethics, daughter-mother relationship, memoirs

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14 APP-Based Language Teaching Using Mobile Response System in the Classroom

Authors: Martha Wilson

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With the peak of Computer-Assisted Language Learning slowly coming to pass and Mobile-Assisted Language Learning, at times, a bit lacking in the communicative department, we are now faced with a challenging question: How can we engage the interest of our digital native students and, most importantly, sustain it? As previously mentioned, our classrooms are now experiencing an influx of “digital natives” – people who have grown up using and having unlimited access to technology. While modernizing our curriculum and digitalizing our classrooms are necessary in order to accommodate this new learning style, it is a huge financial burden and a massive undertaking for language institutes. Instead, opting for a more compact, simple, yet multidimensional pedagogical tool may be the solution to the issue at hand. This paper aims to give a brief overview into an existing device referred to as Student Response Systems (SRS) and to expand on this notion to include a new prototype of response system that will be designed as a mobile application to eliminate the need for costly hardware and software. Additionally, an analysis into recent attempts by other institutes to develop the Mobile Response System (MRS) and customer reviews of the existing MRSs will be provided, as well as the lessons learned from those projects. Finally, while the new model of MRS is still in its infancy stage, this paper will discuss the implications of incorporating such an application as a tool to support and to enrich traditional techniques and also offer practical classroom applications with the existing response systems that are immediately available on the market.

Keywords: Mobile app, clickers, App, mobile response system, student response system

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13 Motivation to Ride in the Hotter 'N Hell Hundred Bicycling Event

Authors: Karen J. Polvado, Betty Bowles, Jansen Lauren, Gibson Martha, Robin Lockhart

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The purpose of this study was to identify motivation to participate in the Hotter ‘n Hell Hundred (HHH) bicycling event, and the participants’ demographics, health risk factors, and preparation to ride in the event. A convenience sample of adults pre-registered for non-competitive cycling events (N = 7,472) were requested to complete a survey. Of these, 2,645 (35%) responded. Questions identified the participants’ demographics, preparation, previous experience with HHH, and motives for riding. The HHH attracted riders of all ages (18-80), genders, ethnicities, and educational levels. The majority were males, 40-59 years old, married, college graduates, and identified themselves as non-Hispanic whites. The majority (68%) reported no existing medical conditions, and were normal weight (70%), although 52% had been overweight or obese in the past. Preparation to ride in the HHH varied from riding more than five times a week for the last year, to riding 1-2 times per week one month before the event. Most (93%) had ridden in the HHH an average of 5 times. Motivations to ride included: personal challenge (75%); to experience the HHH ride (57%); a chance to ride with family/friends/coworkers (52%); improving health (47%); fun (33%); challenge by others (15%); part of a weight loss plan (11%); training for another event (10%); and raising money for a cause (2%). The motivation to participate appeared to move from extrinsic to intrinsic motivation as age increased. Exploration of the exercise habits and motivations of older adults (70+) is suggested by this study.

Keywords: Physical Activity, Cycling, training, Motivation

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12 Identification of Environmental Damage Due to Mining Area Bangka Islands in Indonesia

Authors: Aroma Elmina Martha

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Environment affects the continuity of life and human well-being and the bodies of other living. Environmental quality is very closely related to the quality of life. Sustainability must be protected from damage due to the use of natural resources, such as tin mining in Bangka island. This research is a descriptive study, which identifies the environmental damage caused by mining land and sea in Bangka district. The approach used is juridical, social and economic. The study uses primary legal materials, secondary, and tertiary, equipped with field research. The analysis technique used is qualitative analysis. The impacts of mining on land among other physical and chemical damage, erosion and widening the depth of the river, a pool of micro-climate, the quality and feasibility, vegetation, wildlife and biodiversity, land values, social and economic. This mining causes damage to the soil structure, and puddles in the former digs which were not backfilled again. The impact of mining on the ocean such as changes in current surge, erosion and abrasion basic coastal waters, shoreline change, marine water quality changes, and changes in marine communities. The findings of the research show that tin mining in the sea also potentially have a significant impact on the life of the reef, populations of marine organisms. However, mining on land needs to consider the impact of the damage, so that the damage can be minimized. In the recovery process needs to be pursued by exploiting the rest of the pile of tin. Thus, mining activities should take into account the distance of beach sediment size, wave height, wave length, wave period, and the acceleration of gravity. The process of the tin washing should be done in a fairly safe area, thus avoiding damage to the coral reefs that will eventually reduce the population of marine life.

Keywords: Mining, environmental damage, shoreline, abration

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11 Sociology Curriculum and Capabilities Formation: A Case Study of Two South African Universities

Authors: B. Manyonga

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Across the world, higher education (HE) is expanding rapidly and issues of curriculum change have become more contentious and political than ever before. Although research informing curricula review in social sciences and particularly sociology has been conducted, much analysis has been devoted to teaching and transmitting disciplinary knowledge, student identity and epistemology, with little focus on curriculum conceptualisation and capability formation. This paper builds on and contributes to accumulating knowledge in the field of sociology curriculum design in the South African HE context. Drawing from the principles of Capabilities Approach (CA) of Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum, the paper argues that sociology curriculum conceptualisation may be enriched by capabilities identification for students. Thus, the sociological canon ought to be the vehicle through which student capabilities could be developed. The CA throws a fresh light on how curriculum ought to be designed to offer students real opportunities, expanding choices for individuals to be what they want to be and do. The paper uses a case of two South African universities to present analysis of qualitative data collected from undergraduate sociology lecturers. The major findings of the paper indicate that there is no clear philosophy guiding the conceptualisation of curriculum. The conceptualisation is based on lecturer expertise, carrying out research, response to topical and societal issues. Sociology lecturers highlighted that they do not consult students on what they want to do and to be as a result of studying for a sociology degree. Although lecturers recognise some human development capabilities such as critical thinking, multiple perspectives and problem solving as important for sociology students, there is little evidence to illustrate how these are being cultivated in students. Taken together, the results suggest that sociological canon is being regarded as the starting point for curriculum planning and construction.

Keywords: Higher Education, graduate attributes, capabilities approach, sociology curriculum

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10 Solid State Fermentation Process Development for Trichoderma asperellum Using Inert Support in a Fixed Bed Fermenter

Authors: Mauricio Cruz, Andrés Díaz García, Martha Isabel Gómez, Juan Carlos Serrato Bermúdez

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The disadvantages of using natural substrates in SSF processes have been well recognized and mainly are associated to gradual decomposition of the substrate, formation of agglomerates and decrease of porosity bed generating limitations in the mass and heat transfer. Additionally, in several cases, materials with a high agricultural value such as sour milk, beets, rice, beans and corn have been used. Thus, the use of economic inert supports (natural or synthetic) in combination with a nutrient suspension for the production of biocontrol microorganisms is a good alternative in SSF processes, but requires further studies in the fields of modeling and optimization. Therefore, the aim of this work is to compare the performance of two inert supports, a synthetic (polyurethane foam) and a natural one (rice husk), identifying the factors that have the major effects on the productivity of T. asperellum Th204 and the maximum specific growth rate in a PROPHYTA L05® fixed bed bioreactor. For this, the six factors C:N ratio, temperature, inoculation rate, bed height, air moisture content and airflow were evaluated using a fractional design. The factors C:N and air flow were identified as significant on the productivity (expressed as conidia/dry substrate•h). The polyurethane foam showed higher maximum specific growth rate (0.1631 h-1) and productivities of 3.89 x107 conidia/dry substrate•h compared to rice husk (2.83x106) and natural substrate based on rice (8.87x106) used as control. Finally, a quadratic model was generated and validated, obtaining productivities higher than 3.0x107 conidia/dry substrate•h with air flow at 0.9 m3/h and C:N ratio at 18.1.

Keywords: Bioprocess, Scale up, Air Flow, fractional design, C:N ratio

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9 Teaching English to Rural Students: A Case Study of a Select Batch at SSN College of Engineering, Chennai

Authors: Martha Karunakar

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There exists a wide divide between the urban and the rural students in a vast country like India. This dichotomy is seen in the resources available to them, like the learning facilities, the infra-structure, the learning ambience and meeting of their basic needs of food, clothing and shelter. This paper discusses the effect of English language teaching as a Bridge course on a select batch of rural students at an Engineering college in Chennai, one of the four Metros of India. The study aims to understand how the teacher input and the teacher- peer-student interaction facilitates the acquisition of the basic structures of the English language to a group that is minimally exposed to the language. The objective in conducting the Bridge Course is to integrate these rural students into the mainstream and empower them in terms of English speaking ability; to enable them to comprehend their respective engineering classes where the medium of instruction is English and also to be able to interact with their urban peers. This program is conducted prior to the start of a regular academic session to equip them face the rigors of engineering education. The study is placed within the framework of Interaction theory in second language acquisition. The study evaluates the impact of linking theory and practice by implementing meaningful interaction not only within classrooms but also in the common areas. By providing intensive comprehensible input, it is anticipated that participant’s level of English language improves. The teaching methods and classroom activities included individual and group participation, encompassing all the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing (LSRW). The diagnostic tests that were administered before the commencement of the course and the exit test after the completion were used to record the impact of the training.

Keywords: Interaction, teaching English, comprehensible input, rural students

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8 The Role of Cultural Expectations in Emotion Regulation among Nepali Adolescents

Authors: Martha Berg, Megan Ramaiya, Andi Schmidt, Susanna Sharma, Brandon Kohrt

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Nepali adolescents report tension and negative emotion due to perceived expectations of both academic and social achievement. These societal goals, which are internalized through early-life socialization, drive the development of self-regulatory processes such as emotion regulation. Emotion dysregulation is linked with adverse psychological outcomes such as depression, self-harm, and suicide, which are public health concerns for organizations working with Nepali adolescents. This study examined the relation among socialization, internalized cultural goals, and emotion regulation to inform interventions for reducing depression and suicide in this population. Participants included 102 students in grades 7 through 9 in a post-earthquake school setting in rural Kathmandu valley. All participants completed a tablet-based battery of quantitative measures, comprising transculturally adapted assessments of emotion regulation, depression, and self-harm/suicide ideation and behavior. Qualitative measures included two focus groups and semi-structured interviews with 22 students and 3 parents. A notable proportion of the sample reported depression symptoms in the past 2 weeks (68%), lifetime self-harm ideation (28%), and lifetime suicide attempts (13%). Students who lived with their nuclear family reported lower levels of difficulty than those who lived with more distant relatives (z=2.16, p=.03), which suggests a link between family environment and adolescent emotion regulation, potentially mediated by socialization and internalization of cultural goals. These findings call for further research into the aspects of nuclear versus extended family environments that shape the development of emotion regulation.

Keywords: socialization, Adolescent Mental Health, emotion regulation, Nepal

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7 Understanding Help Seeking among Black Women with Clinically Significant Posttraumatic Stress Symptoms

Authors: Glenda Wrenn, Juliet Muzere, Meldra Hall, Allyson Belton, Kisha Holden, Chanita Hughes-Halbert, Martha Kent, Bekh Bradley

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Understanding the help seeking decision making process and experiences of health disparity populations with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is central to development of trauma-informed, culturally centered, and patient focused services. Yet, little is known about the decision making process among adult Black women who are non-treatment seekers as they are, by definition, not engaged in services. Methods: Audiotaped interviews were conducted with 30 African American adult women with clinically significant PTSD symptoms who were engaged in primary care, but not in treatment for PTSD despite symptom burden. A qualitative interview guide was used to elucidate key themes. Independent coding of themes mapped to theory and identification of emergent themes were conducted using qualitative methods. An existing quantitative dataset was analyzed to contextualize responses and provide a descriptive summary of the sample. Results: Emergent themes revealed that active mental avoidance, the intermittent nature of distress, ambivalence, and self-identified resilience as undermining to help seeking decisions. Participants were stuck within the help-seeking phase of ‘recognition’ of illness and retained a sense of “it is my decision” despite endorsing significant social and environmental negative influencers. Participants distinguished ‘help acceptance’ from ‘help seeking’ with greater willingness to accept help and importance placed on being of help to others. Conclusions: Elucidation of the decision-making process from the perspective of non-treatment seekers has implications for outreach and treatment within models of integrated and specialty systems care. The salience of responses to trauma symptoms and stagnation in the help seeking recognition phase are findings relevant to integrated care service design and community engagement.

Keywords: Culture, Integrated Care, PTSD, help-seeking

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6 An Endophyte of Amphipterygium adstringens as Producer of Cytotoxic Compounds

Authors: Karol Rodriguez-Peña, Martha L. Macias-Rubalcava, Leticia Rocha-Zavaleta, Sergio Sanchez

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A bioassay-guided study for anti-cancer compounds from endophytes of the Mexican medicinal plant Amphipteryygium adstringens resulted in the isolation of a streptomycete capable of producing a group of compounds with high cytotoxic activity. Microorganisms from surface sterilized samples of various sections of the plant were isolated and all the actinomycetes found were evaluated for their potential to produce compounds with cytotoxic activity against cancer cell lines MCF7 (breast cancer) and HeLa (cervical cancer) as well as the non-tumoural cell line HaCaT (keratinocyte). The most active microorganism was picked for further evaluation. The identification of the microorganism was carried out by 16S rDNA gene sequencing, finding the closest proximity to Streptomyces scabrisporus, but with the additional characteristic that the strain isolated in this study was capable of producing colorful compounds never described for this species. Crude extracts of dichloromethane and ethyl acetate showed IC50 values of 0.29 and 0.96 μg/mL for MCF7, 0.51 and 1.98 μg/mL for HeLa and 0.96 and 2.7 μg/mL for HaCaT. Scaling the fermentation to 10 L in a bioreactor generated 1 g of total crude extract, which was fractionated by silica gel open column to yield 14 fractions. Nine of the fractions showed cytotoxic activity. Fraction 4 was chosen for subsequent purification because of its high activity against cancerous cell lines, lower activity against keratinocytes. HPLC-UV-MS/ESI was used for the evaluation of this fraction, finding at least 10 different compounds with high values of m/z (≈588). Purification of the compounds was carried out by preparative thin-layer chromatography. The prevalent compound was Steffimycin B, a molecule known for its antibiotic and cytotoxic activities and also for its low solubility in aqueous solutions. Along with steffimycin B, another five compounds belonging to the steffimycin family were isolated and at this moment their structures are being elucidated, some of which display better solubility in water: an attractive property for the pharmaceutical industry. As a conclusion to this study, the isolation of endophytes resulted in the discovery of a strain capable of producing compounds with high cytotoxic activity that need to be studied for their possible utilization.

Keywords: Cytotoxicity, amphipterygium adstringens, streptomyces scabrisporus, steffimycin

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5 Dendroremediation of a Defunct Lead Acid Battery Recycling Site

Authors: Alejandro Ruiz-Olivares, M. del Carmen González-Chávez, Rogelio Carrillo-González, Martha Reyes-Ramos, Javier Suárez Espinosa

Abstract:

Use of automobiles has increased and proportionally, the demand for batteries to impulse them. When the device is aged, all the battery materials are reused through lead acid battery recycling (LABR). Importation of used lead acid batteries in Mexico has increased in the last years since many recycling factories have been settled in the country. Inadequate disposal of lead-acid battery recycling (LABR) wastes left soil severely polluted with Pb, Cu, and salts (Na+, SO2− 4, PO3− 4). Soil organic amendments may contribute with essential nutrients and sequester (scavenger compounds) metals to allow plant establishment. The objective of this research was to revegetate a former lead-acid battery recycling site aided with organic amendments. Seven tree species (Acacia farnesiana, Casuarina equisetifolia, Cupressus lusitanica, Eucalyptus obliqua, Fraxinus excelsior, Prosopis laevigata and Pinus greggii) and two organic amendments (vermicompost and vermicompost + sawdust mixture) were tested for phytoremediation of a defunct LABR site. Plants were irrigated during the dry season. Monitoring of the soils was carried out during the experiment: Available metals, salts concentrations and their spatial pattern in soil were analyzed. Plant species and amendments were compared through analysis of covariance and longitudinal analysis. High concentrations of extractable (DTPA-TEA-CaCl₂) metals (up to 15,685 mg kg⁻¹ and 478 mg kg⁻¹ for Pb and Cu) and soluble salts (292 mg kg-1 and 23,578 mg kg-1 for PO3− 4and SO2− 4) were found in the soil after three and six months of setting up the experiment. Lead and Cu concentrations were depleted in the rhizosphere after amendments addition. Spatial pattern of PO3− 4, SO2− 4 and DTPA-extractable Pb and Cu changed slightly through time. In spite of extreme soil conditions the plant species planted: A. farnesiana, E. obliqua, C. equisetifolia and F. excelsior had 100% of survival. Available metals and salts differently affected each species. In addition, negative effect on growth due to Pb accumulated in shoots was observed only in C. lusitanica. Many specimens accumulated high concentrations of Pb ( > 1000 mg kg-1) in shoots. C. equisetifolia and C. lusitanica had the best rate of growth. Based on the results, all the evaluated species may be useful for revegetation of Pb-polluted soils. Besides their use in phytoremediation, some ecosystem services can be obtained from the woodland such as encourage wildlife, wood production, and carbon sequestration. Further research should be conducted to analyze these services.

Keywords: Heavy Metals, organic amendments, inadequate disposal, phytoremediation with trees

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4 Deconstructing and Reconstructing the Definition of Inhuman Treatment in International Law

Authors: Sonia Boulos

Abstract:

The prohibition on ‘inhuman treatment’ constitutes one of the central tenets of modern international human rights law. It is incorporated in principal international human rights instruments including Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and Article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. However, in the absence of any legislative definition of the term ‘inhuman’, its interpretation becomes challenging. The aim of this article is to critically analyze the interpretation of the term ‘inhuman’ in international human rights law and to suggest a new approach to construct its meaning. The article is composed of two central parts. The first part is a critical appraisal of the interpretation of the term ‘inhuman’ by supra-national human rights law institutions. It highlights the failure of supra-national institutions to provide an independent definition for the term ‘inhuman’. In fact, those institutions consistently fail to distinguish the term ‘inhuman’ from its other kin terms, i.e. ‘cruel’ and ‘degrading.’ Very often, they refer to these three prohibitions as ‘CIDT’, as if they were one collective. They were primarily preoccupied with distinguishing ‘CIDT’ from ‘torture.’ By blurring the conceptual differences between these three terms, supra-national institutions supplemented them with a long list of specific and purely descriptive subsidiary rules. In most cases, those subsidiary rules were announced in the absence of sufficient legal reasoning explaining how they were derived from abstract and evaluative standards embodied in the prohibitions collectively referred to as ‘CIDT.’ By opting for this option, supra-national institutions have created the risk for the development of an incoherent body of jurisprudence on those terms at the international level. They also have failed to provide guidance for domestic courts on how to enforce these prohibitions. While blurring the differences between the terms ‘cruel,’ ‘inhuman,’ and ‘degrading’ has consequences for the three, the term ‘inhuman’ remains the most impoverished one. It is easy to link the term ‘cruel’ to the clause on ‘cruel and unusual punishment’ originating from the English Bill of Rights of 1689. It is also easy to see that the term ‘degrading’ reflects a dignatarian ideal. However, when we turn to the term ‘inhuman’, we are left without any interpretative clue. The second part of the article suggests that the ordinary meaning of the word ‘inhuman’ should be our first clue. However, regaining the conceptual independence of the term ‘inhuman’ requires more than a mere reflection on the word-meaning of the term. Thus, the second part introduces philosophical concepts related to the understanding of what it means to be human. It focuses on ‘the capabilities approach’ and the notion of ‘human functioning’, introduced by Amartya Sen and further explored by Martha Nussbaum. Nussbaum’s work on the basic human capabilities is particularly helpful or even vital for understanding the moral and legal substance of the prohibition on ‘inhuman’ treatment.

Keywords: capabilities approach, inhuman treatment, human functioning, supra-national institutions

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3 Discovering the Effects of Meteorological Variables on the Air Quality of Bogota, Colombia, by Data Mining Techniques

Authors: Fabiana Franceschi, Martha Cobo, Manuel Figueredo

Abstract:

Bogotá, the capital of Colombia, is its largest city and one of the most polluted in Latin America due to the fast economic growth over the last ten years. Bogotá has been affected by high pollution events which led to the high concentration of PM10 and NO2, exceeding the local 24-hour legal limits (100 and 150 g/m3 each). The most important pollutants in the city are PM10 and PM2.5 (which are associated with respiratory and cardiovascular problems) and it is known that their concentrations in the atmosphere depend on the local meteorological factors. Therefore, it is necessary to establish a relationship between the meteorological variables and the concentrations of the atmospheric pollutants such as PM10, PM2.5, CO, SO2, NO2 and O3. This study aims to determine the interrelations between meteorological variables and air pollutants in Bogotá, using data mining techniques. Data from 13 monitoring stations were collected from the Bogotá Air Quality Monitoring Network within the period 2010-2015. The Principal Component Analysis (PCA) algorithm was applied to obtain primary relations between all the parameters, and afterwards, the K-means clustering technique was implemented to corroborate those relations found previously and to find patterns in the data. PCA was also used on a per shift basis (morning, afternoon, night and early morning) to validate possible variation of the previous trends and a per year basis to verify that the identified trends have remained throughout the study time. Results demonstrated that wind speed, wind direction, temperature, and NO2 are the most influencing factors on PM10 concentrations. Furthermore, it was confirmed that high humidity episodes increased PM2,5 levels. It was also found that there are direct proportional relationships between O3 levels and wind speed and radiation, while there is an inverse relationship between O3 levels and humidity. Concentrations of SO2 increases with the presence of PM10 and decreases with the wind speed and wind direction. They proved as well that there is a decreasing trend of pollutant concentrations over the last five years. Also, in rainy periods (March-June and September-December) some trends regarding precipitations were stronger. Results obtained with K-means demonstrated that it was possible to find patterns on the data, and they also showed similar conditions and data distribution among Carvajal, Tunal and Puente Aranda stations, and also between Parque Simon Bolivar and las Ferias. It was verified that the aforementioned trends prevailed during the study period by applying the same technique per year. It was concluded that PCA algorithm is useful to establish preliminary relationships among variables, and K-means clustering to find patterns in the data and understanding its distribution. The discovery of patterns in the data allows using these clusters as an input to an Artificial Neural Network prediction model.

Keywords: Data Mining, Air Pollution, Particulate Matter, air quality modelling

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2 Cotton Fabrics Functionalized with Green and Commercial Ag Nanoparticles

Authors: Laura Gonzalez, Santiago Benavides, Martha Elena Londono, Ana Elisa Casas, Adriana Restrepo-Osorio

Abstract:

Cotton products are sensitive to microorganisms due to its ability to retain moisture, which might cause change into the coloration, mechanical properties reduction or foul odor generation; consequently, this represents risks to the health of users. Nowadays, have been carried out researches to give antibacterial properties to textiles using different strategies, which included the use of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs). The antibacterial behavior can be affected by laundering process reducing its effectiveness. In the other way, the environmental impact generated for the synthetic antibacterial agents has motivated to seek new and more ecological ways for produce AgNPs. The aims of this work are to determine the antibacterial activity of cotton fabric functionalized with green (G) and commercial (C) AgNPs after twenty washing cycles, also to evaluate morphological and color changes. A plain weave cotton fabric suitable for dyeing and two AgNPs solutions were use. C a commercial product and G produced using an ecological method, both solutions with 0.5 mM concentration were impregnated on cotton fabric without stabilizer, at a liquor to fabric ratio of 1:20 in constant agitation during 30min and then dried at 70 °C by 10 min. After that the samples were subjected to twenty washing cycles using phosphate-free detergent simulated on agitated flask at 150 rpm, then were centrifuged and dried on a tumble. The samples were characterized using Kirby-Bauer test determine antibacterial activity against E. coli y S. aureus microorganisms, the results were registered by photographs establishing the inhibition halo before and after the washing cycles, the tests were conducted in triplicate. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) was used to observe the morphologies of cotton fabric and treated samples. The color changes of cotton fabrics in relation to the untreated samples were obtained by spectrophotometer analysis. The images, reveals the presence of inhibition halo in the samples treated with C and G AgNPs solutions, even after twenty washing cycles, which indicated a good antibacterial activity and washing durability, with a tendency to better results against to S. aureus bacteria. The presence of AgNPs on the surface of cotton fiber and morphological changes were observed through SEM, after and before washing cycles. The own color of the cotton fiber has been significantly altered with both antibacterial solutions. According to the colorimetric results, the samples treated with C lead to yellowing while the samples modified with G to red yellowing Cotton fabrics treated AgNPs C and G from 0.5 mM solutions exhibited excellent antimicrobial activity against E. coli and S. aureus with good laundering durability effects. The surface of the cotton fibers was modified with the presence of AgNPs C and G due to the presence of NPs and its agglomerates. There are significant changes in the natural color of cotton fabric due to deposition of AgNPs C and G which were maintained after laundering process.

Keywords: Silver Nanoparticles, cotton fabric, antibacterial property, fastness to wash, Kirby-Bauer test

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1 Cuban's Supply Chains Development Model: Qualitative and Quantitative Impact on Final Consumers

Authors: Ana Julia Acevedo Urquiaga, Jose A. Acevedo Suarez, Teresita Lopez Joy, Martha I. Gomez Acosta

Abstract:

Current trends in business competitiveness indicate the need to manage businesses as supply chains and not in isolation. The use of strategies aimed at maximum satisfaction of customers in a network and based on inter-company cooperation; contribute to obtaining successful joint results. In the Cuban economic context, the development of productive linkages to achieve integrated management of supply chains is considering a key aspect. In order to achieve this jump, it is necessary to develop acting capabilities in the entities that make up the chains through a systematic procedure that allows arriving at a management model in consonance with the environment. The objective of the research focuses on: designing a model and procedure for the development of integrated management of supply chains in economic entities. The results obtained are: the Model and the Procedure for the Development of the Supply Chains Integrated Management (MP-SCIM). The Model is based on the development of logistics in the network actors, the joint work between companies, collaborative planning and the monitoring of a main indicator according to the end customers. The application Procedure starts from the well-founded need for development in a supply chain and focuses on training entrepreneurs as doers. The characterization and diagnosis is done to later define the design of the network and the relationships between the companies. It takes into account the feedback as a method of updating the conditions and way to focus the objectives according to the final customers. The MP-SCIM is the result of systematic work with a supply chain approach in companies that have consolidated as coordinators of their network. The cases of the edible oil chain and explosives for construction sector reflect results of more remarkable advances since they have applied this approach for more than 5 years and maintain it as a general strategy of successful development. The edible oil trading company experienced a jump in sales. In 2006, the company started the analysis in order to define the supply chain, apply diagnosis techniques, define problems and implement solutions. The involvement of the management and the progressive formation of performance capacities in the personnel allowed the application of tools according to the context. The company that coordinates the explosives chain for construction sector shows adequate training with independence and opportunity in the face of different situations and variations of their business environment. The appropriation of tools and techniques for the analysis and implementation of proposals is a characteristic feature of this case. The coordinating entity applies integrated supply chain management to its decisions based on the timely training of the necessary action capabilities for each situation. Other cases of study and application that validate these tools are also detailed in this paper, and they highlight the results of generalization in the quantitative and qualitative improvement according to the final clients. These cases are: teaching literature in universities, agricultural products of local scope and medicine supply chains.

Keywords: Supply Chain Management, Integrated Management, tactical-operative planning, logistic system

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