Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 21

Search results for: Lydia Leleyter

21 Availability of Metals in Fired Bricks Incorporating Harbour Sediments

Authors: Fabienne Baraud, Lydia Leleyter, Sandra Poree, Melanie Lemoine, Fatiha Oudghiri

Abstract:

Alternative solutions to immersion at sea are searched for the huge amounts of dredged sediments around the world that might contain various types of contaminants. Possible re-uses of such materials in civil engineering appear as sustainable solutions. The French SEDIBRIC project (valorisation de SEDIments en BRIQues et tuiles) aims to replace a part of natural clays with dredged sediments in the preparation of fired bricks. The potential environmental impact of this re-use is explored to complete the technical and economic feasibility of the study. As part of the project, we investigate the environmental availability of metallic elements (Al, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Ni, Mg, Mn, Pb, Ti, and Zn) initially present in the dredged sediments selected for the project. Leaching tests (with H₂O, HCl, or EDTA) are conducted in the sediments than in the final bricks in order to evaluate the possible influence of some steps of the bricks manufacturing (desalination pre-treatment, firing, etc.). The desalination pre-treatment using tap water has no or few impacts on the environmental availability of the studied elements. On the opposite, the firing process (900°C) affects the value of the total content of elements detected in the bricks but also the environmental availability for various elements. For instance, Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn are stabilized in the bricks, whereas the availability of some other elements (i.e., Cr, Ni) increases, depending on the nature of the extracting solution.

Keywords: availability, bricks, dredged sediments, metals

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20 The Use of Seashell by-Products in Pervious Concrete Pavers

Authors: Dang Hanh Nguyen, Nassim Sebaibi, Mohamed Boutouil, Lydia Leleyter, Fabienne Baraud

Abstract:

Pervious concrete is a green alternative to conventional pavements with minimal fine aggregate and a high void content. Pervious concrete allows water to infiltrate through the pavement, thereby reducing the runoff and the requirement for stormwater management systems. Seashell By-Products (SBP) are produced in an important quantity in France and are considered as waste. This work investigated to use SBP in pervious concrete and produce an even more environmentally friendly product, Pervious Concrete Pavers. The research methodology involved substituting the coarse aggregate in the previous concrete mix design with 20%, 40% and 60% SBP. The testing showed that pervious concrete containing less than 40% SBP had strengths, permeability and void content which are comparable to the pervious concrete containing with only natural aggregate. The samples that contained 40% SBP or higher had a significant loss in strength and an increase in permeability and a void content from the control mix pervious concrete. On the basis of the results in this research, it was found that the natural aggregate can be substituted by SBP without affecting the delicate balance of a pervious concrete mix. Additional, it is recommended that the optimum replacement percentage for SBP in pervious concrete is 40 % direct replacement of natural coarse aggregate while maintaining the structural performance and drainage capabilities of the pervious concrete.

Keywords: seashell by-products, pervious concrete pavers, permeability, mechanical strength

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19 Use of Chemical Extractions to Estimate the Metals Availability in Bricks Made of Dredged Sediments

Authors: Fabienne Baraud, Lydia Leleyter, Sandra Poree, Melanie Lemoine

Abstract:

SEDIBRIC (valorization de SEDIments en BRIQues et tuiles) is a French project that aims to replace a part of natural clays with dredged sediments in the preparation of fired bricks in order to propose an alternative solution for the management of harbor dredged sediments. The feasibility of such re-use is explored from a technical, economic, and environmental point of view. The present study focuses on the potential environmental impact of various chemical elements (Al, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Ni, Mg, Mn, Pb, Ti, and Zn) that are initially present in the dredged sediments. The total content (after acid digestion) and the environmental availability (estimated by single extractions with various extractants) of these elements are determined in the raw sediments and in the obtained fired bricks. The possible influence of some steps of the manufacturing process (sediment pre-treatment, firing) is also explored. The first results show that the pre-treatment step, which uses tap water to desalinate the raw sediment, does not influence the environmental availability of the studied elements. However, the firing process, performed at 900°C, can affect the amount of some elements detected in the bricks, as well as their environmental availability. We note that for Cr, or Ni, the HCl or EDTA availability was increased in the brick (compared to the availability in the raw sediment). For Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn, the HCl and EDTA availability was reduced in the bricks, meaning that these elements were stabilized within the bricks.

Keywords: bricks, chemical extraction, metals, sediment

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18 A Model for Operating Rooms Scheduling

Authors: Jose Francisco Ferreira Ribeiro, Alexandre Bevilacqua Leoneti, Andre Lucirton Costa

Abstract:

This paper presents a mathematical model in binary variables 0/1 to make the assignment of surgical procedures to the operating rooms in a hospital. The proposed mathematical model is based on the generalized assignment problem, which maximizes the sum of preferences for the use of the operating rooms by doctors, respecting the time available in each room. The corresponding program was written in Visual Basic of Microsoft Excel, and tested to schedule surgeries at St. Lydia Hospital in Ribeirao Preto, Brazil.

Keywords: generalized assignment problem, logistics, optimization, scheduling

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17 Women's Contemporary Dystopias: Feminist Protagonists Taking Back Control

Authors: Natalia Fontes De Oliveira

Abstract:

The Canadian author Margaret Atwood deconstructs the tainted dichotomies between women and men by embracing the disorder throughout her dystopias. In Atwood’s The Testaments, nature can be seen as a background to the story as well as a metaphorical expression of the characters’ state of mind, nevertheless, the protagonists’ nature writing portrays conveys a curiosity to the pre-established sanctions of a docile garden, viewing nature as an autonomous entity, especially when they are away from the confinements of Gilead’s regime. The three narrating protagonists, Agnes, Aunt Lydia, and Nicole, use nature writing subversively as a form of rebellion. This paper investigates how the three protagonists narrate nature through an intimist point of view, with sensibility to observe the multiple relationships among humanity, nature, and the impositions of a theocratic ultra conservative patriarchal society.

Keywords: contemporary literature, dystopias, feminism, women’s writing

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16 Effect of Hydrostatic Stress on Yield Behavior of the High Density Polyethylene

Authors: Kamel Hachour, Lydia Sadeg, Djamel Sersab, Tassadit Bellahcen

Abstract:

The hydrostatic stress is, for polymers, a significant parameter which affects the yield behavior of these materials. In this work, we investigate the influence of this parameter on yield behavior of the high density polyethylene (hdpe). Some tests on specimens with diverse geometries are described in this paper. Uniaxial tests: tensile on notched round bar specimens with different curvature radii, compression on cylindrical specimens and simple shear on parallelepiped specimens were performed. Biaxial tests with various combinations of tensile/compressive and shear loading on butterfly specimens were also realized in order to determine the hydrostatic stress for different states of solicitation. The experimental results show that the yield stress is very affected by the hydrostatic stress developed in the material during solicitations.

Keywords: biaxial tests, hdpe, Hydrostatic stress, yield behavior

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15 Perception of Training Actors on the Effectiveness of Training Carried Out within the Company

Authors: Oussedik Lydia, Zaouani-Denoux Souâd

Abstract:

In an economic context characterized by intense competition and the impact of new technologies, companies have a constant need to adapt to the environment and the changes imposed. This situation leads companies to take training actions to develop employees’ required skills. Further, training is considered as a strategic lever for the company's growth. Accordingly, an increasing number of companies are adopting training to ensure continuous employees qualification. Thus, the aim of this research is to understand the process of training engineering occurring in the context of a company's continuous training, which will help to identify the gaps that can hinder or promote the development of employees' knowledge and skills. The research methodology is based on a mixed-method approach. Interviews and questionnaires are implemented to collect qualitative and quantitative data. The study results can help managers to identify gaps at each stage of training design. Finally, the research findings provide important information to help design a training plan to support the development of employees' knowledge and performance.

Keywords: training engineering, training needs, training plan, competences, continuing training, perception

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14 Process Optimisation for Internal Cylindrical Rough Turning of Nickel Alloy 625 Weld Overlay

Authors: Lydia Chan, Islam Shyha, Dale Dreyer, John Hamilton, Phil Hackney

Abstract:

Nickel-based superalloys are generally known to be difficult to cut due to their strength, low thermal conductivity, and high work hardening tendency. Superalloy such as alloy 625 is often used in the oil and gas industry as a surfacing material to provide wear and corrosion resistance to components. The material is typically applied onto a metallic substrate through weld overlay cladding, an arc welding technique. Cladded surfaces are always rugged and carry a tough skin; this creates further difficulties to the machining process. The present work utilised design of experiment to optimise the internal cylindrical rough turning for weld overlay surfaces. An L27 orthogonal array was used to assess effects of the four selected key process variables: cutting insert, depth of cut, feed rate, and cutting speed. The optimal cutting conditions were determined based on productivity and the level of tool wear.

Keywords: cylindrical turning, nickel superalloy, turning of overlay, weld overlay

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13 A Polynomial Time Clustering Algorithm for Solving the Assignment Problem in the Vehicle Routing Problem

Authors: Lydia Wahid, Mona F. Ahmed, Nevin Darwish

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The vehicle routing problem (VRP) consists of a group of customers that needs to be served. Each customer has a certain demand of goods. A central depot having a fleet of vehicles is responsible for supplying the customers with their demands. The problem is composed of two subproblems: The first subproblem is an assignment problem where the number of vehicles that will be used as well as the customers assigned to each vehicle are determined. The second subproblem is the routing problem in which for each vehicle having a number of customers assigned to it, the order of visits of the customers is determined. Optimal number of vehicles, as well as optimal total distance, should be achieved. In this paper, an approach for solving the first subproblem (the assignment problem) is presented. In the approach, a clustering algorithm is proposed for finding the optimal number of vehicles by grouping the customers into clusters where each cluster is visited by one vehicle. Finding the optimal number of clusters is NP-hard. This work presents a polynomial time clustering algorithm for finding the optimal number of clusters and solving the assignment problem.

Keywords: vehicle routing problems, clustering algorithms, Clarke and Wright Saving Method, agglomerative hierarchical clustering

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12 Nagabhasma Preparation and Its Effect on Kidneys: A Histopathological Study

Authors: Lydia Andrade, Kumar M. R. Bhat

Abstract:

Heavy metals, especially lead, is considered to be a multi-organ toxicant. However, such heavy metals, are used in the preparation of traditional medicines. Nagabhasma is one of the traditional medicines. Lead is the metal used in its preparation. Lead is converted into a health beneficial, organometallic compound, when subjected to various traditional methods of purification. Therefore, this study is designed to evaluate the effect of such processed lead in various stages of traditionally prepared Nagabhasma on the histological structure of kidneys. Using the human equivalent doses of Nagabhasma, various stages of its preparation were fed orally for 30 days and 60 days (short term and long term). The treated and untreated rats were then sacrificed for the collection of kidneys. The kidneys were processed for histopathological study. The results show severe changes in the histological structure of kidneys. The animals treated with lead acetate showed changes in the epithelial cells lining the bowman’s capsule. The proximal and distal convoluted tubules were dilated leading to atrophy of their epithelial cells. The amount of inflammatory infiltrates was more in this group. A few groups also showed pockets of inter-tubular hemorrhage. These changes, however, were minimized as the stages progressed form stages 1 to 4 of Nagabhasma preparation. Therefore, it is necessary to stringently monitor the processing of lead acetate during the preparation of Nagabhasma.

Keywords: heavy metals, kidneys, lead acetate, Nagabhasma

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11 Environmental Factors Affecting Knowledge Transfer between the Context of the Training Institution and the Context of the Work Environment: The Case of Agricultural Vocational Training

Authors: Oussedik Lydia

Abstract:

Given the evolution of professions, training is becoming a solution to meet the current requirements of the labor market. Notably, the amount of money invested in training activities is considerable and continuously increasing globally. The justification of this investment becomes an obligation for those responsible for training. Therefore, the impact of training can be measured by the degree to which the knowledge, skills, and attitudes acquired through training are transferred to the workplace. Further, knowledge transfer is fundamental because the objective of any training is to be close to a professional environment in order to improve the productivity of participants. Hence, the need to better understand the knowledge transfer process in order to determine the factors that may influence it. The objective of this research is to understand the process of knowledge transfer that can occur between two contexts: professional training and the workplace, which will provide further insight to identify the environmental factors that can hinder or promote it. By examining participants' perceptions of the training and work contexts, this qualitative approach seeks to understand the knowledge transfer process that occurs between the two contexts. It also aims to identify the factors that influence it. The results will help managers identify environmental factors in the training and work context that may impact knowledge transfer. These results can be used to promote the knowledge transfer process and the performance of the trainees.

Keywords: knowledge transfer, professional training, professional training in agriculture, training context, professional context

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10 Obesity, Leptin Levels and Leptin Receptor Gene Polymorphisms in Afro-Caribbean Subjects

Authors: Lydia Foucan, Christine Rambhojan, Rachel Billy, Christophe Armand, Carl-Thony Michel, Jean-Marc Lacorte, Laurent Larifla

Abstract:

Leptin, an adipocyte-derived hormone, modulates insulin secretion and action via the leptin receptor (LEPR) that is expressed in pancreatic beta cells, adipose tissue, and muscle. Several polymorphisms have been described in the human LEPR gene including p.K109R (rs1137100), p.Q223R (rs1137101) and p.K656N (rs1805094) polymorphisms. The role of these polymorphisms is not yet studied in Guadeloupian population. Our aim was to explore the association of LEPR polymorphisms (K109R, Q223R and K656N) with leptin levels and obesity in non-diabetic Afro-Caribbean subjects. Genotypic analysis of the three polymorphisms was performed in 425 subjects using TaqMan and KASPar Assays. Serum leptin was measured with ELISA kits Biovendor® (RD191001100). Logistic regressions were used for assessment of statistical associations. Mean age was 47.6 ± 12.7 years. Among the participants, 238 (56 %) were women, 124 (30%) were obese and 155 (36.5%) had abdominal obesity. Carriers of LEPR K656N rs1805094 rare allele had significant higher frequencies of obesity (P = 0.007), abdominal obesity (P = 0.004) and metabolic syndrome (P = 0.021) but mean leptin level was not significantly different between both groups (P = 0.075). Odds ratios, adjusted for age and sex associated with presence of rs1805094 rare allele were 1.8 (1.1-2.9), P = 0.012 for obesity, 2.0 (1.2-3.3), P = 0.008 for abdominal obesity and 1.8 (1.1-3.0), P = 0.031 for MetS. No significant association was found with K109R, Q223R. These findings suggest that the K656N polymorphism (but not the K109R or Q223R polymorphism) of LEPR is associated with obesity, abdominal obesity and metabolic syndrome in this Afro-Caribbean non-diabetic population.

Keywords: Afro-Caribbean, leptin levels, leptin receptor gene polymorphisms, obesity

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9 Associations of Gene Polymorphism of IL-17 a (C737T) with Its Level in Patients with Erysipelas Kazakh Population

Authors: Nazira B. Bekenova, Lydia A. Mukovozova, Andrej M. Grjibovski, Alma Z. Tokayeva, Yerbol M. Smail, Nurlan E. Aukenov

Abstract:

Erysipelas is an infectious disease with socio-economic significance and prone to prolonged recurrent course (30%). Contribution of genetic factors, in particular the gene polymorphism of cytokines, can be essential in disease etiology and pathogenesis. Interleukin – 17 A are produced by T helpers of 17 type and plays a key role in development of local inflammation process. Local inflammatory process is a dominant in the clinic of erysipelas. Established that the skin and mucosas are primary areas of migration (homing) Th17-cell and their cytokines are stimulate the barrier function of the epithelium. We studied associations between gene polymorphism of IL-17A (C737T) rs 8193036 and IL-17A level in patients with erysipelas Kazakh population. Altogether, 90 cases with erysipelas and 90 healthy controls from an ethnic Kazakh population comprised the sample. Cases were identified at Clinical Infectious Diseases Hospital of Semey (Kazakhstan). The IL-17A (rs8193036) polymorphism was analyzed by a real time polymerase chain reaction. Plasma levels of IL-17 A were assessed by immuneenzyme analysis method using ‘Vector-Best’ test-system (Russia). Differences in levels of IL-17 A between CC, TT, CT groups were studied using Kruskal — Wallis test. Pairwise comparisons were performed using Mann-Whitney tests with Bonferroni correction (New significance level was set to 0.025). We found, that in patients with erysipelas with CC genotype the level of IL-17 A was higher (p= 0, 010) compared to the carriers of CT genotype. When compared the level of IL – 17 A between the patients with TT genotype and patients with CC genotype, also between the patients with CT genotype and patients with TT genotype statistically significant differences are not revealed (p = 0.374 and p = 0.043, respectively). Comparisons of IL-17 A plasma levels between the CC and CT genotypes, between the CC and TT genotypes, and between the TT and CT in healthy patients did not reveal significant differences (p = 0, 291). Therefore, we are determined the associations of gene polymorphism of IL-17 A (C737T) with its level in patients erysipelas carriers CC genotype.

Keywords: erysipelas, interleukin – 17 A, Kazakh, polymorphism

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8 Assessing Adoption Trends of Mukau (Melia volkensii (Gürke)) Enterprises in Eastern and Coastal Regions of Kenya

Authors: Lydia Murugi Mugendi

Abstract:

The promotion of tree growing as a lucrative enterprise is the focus of this paper as management practices have shifted focus from protection of natural forest resources to community/government partnerships with the aim of resource conservation, management and increase of on-farm tree growing. Using KEFRI as (the source) of information pertaining Melia volkensii (the medium or message) being transferred, this paper investigates the current perception towards forestry and the behavioural attitudes of recipients of forest intervention activities. The two objectives explored in this paper are to find out the level of adoption of Mukau in Kitui, Kibwezi and Samburu/Taru and secondly, to find out the characteristics of the adoption process between Kitui, Kibwezi and Samburu/Taru. The methodologies used during data collection were participatory rural appraisal tools in conjunction with the social survey questionnaires. Simple random sampling and snowball sampling were used to identify respondents within the three target sites and analysis was done using SPSS. Results of the study of indicating that adoption rates of the Mukau in Samburu/Taru, where forestry-related activities were introduced within the past one decade had significantly increase despite initial resistance. The other areas, which had benefited from numerous decades of intense forestry extension projects and activities, indicated a decline in re-adoption rates of Mukau as an enterprise. This study has brought out the reality of adoption trends and state of Mukau population within the three counties while providing a glimpse towards the communities’ perception in regards to adoption of forestry and other environmental innovations. The outcome of the study is to provide a guideline for extension/ dissemination officers in KEFRI and related stakeholders to promote seamless cohesive interaction between the recipient communities of the proposed interventions.

Keywords: adoption, innovation, enterprise, extension, DOI Theory

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7 Structural Design Optimization of Reinforced Thin-Walled Vessels under External Pressure Using Simulation and Machine Learning Classification Algorithm

Authors: Lydia Novozhilova, Vladimir Urazhdin

Abstract:

An optimization problem for reinforced thin-walled vessels under uniform external pressure is considered. The conventional approaches to optimization generally start with pre-defined geometric parameters of the vessels, and then employ analytic or numeric calculations and/or experimental testing to verify functionality, such as stability under the projected conditions. The proposed approach consists of two steps. First, the feasibility domain will be identified in the multidimensional parameter space. Every point in the feasibility domain defines a design satisfying both geometric and functional constraints. Second, an objective function defined in this domain is formulated and optimized. The broader applicability of the suggested methodology is maximized by implementing the Support Vector Machines (SVM) classification algorithm of machine learning for identification of the feasible design region. Training data for SVM classifier is obtained using the Simulation package of SOLIDWORKS®. Based on the data, the SVM algorithm produces a curvilinear boundary separating admissible and not admissible sets of design parameters with maximal margins. Then optimization of the vessel parameters in the feasibility domain is performed using the standard algorithms for the constrained optimization. As an example, optimization of a ring-stiffened closed cylindrical thin-walled vessel with semi-spherical caps under high external pressure is implemented. As a functional constraint, von Mises stress criterion is used but any other stability constraint admitting mathematical formulation can be incorporated into the proposed approach. Suggested methodology has a good potential for reducing design time for finding optimal parameters of thin-walled vessels under uniform external pressure.

Keywords: design parameters, feasibility domain, von Mises stress criterion, Support Vector Machine (SVM) classifier

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6 Identification of Rare Mutations in Genes Involved in Monogenic Forms of Obesity and Diabetes in Obese Guadeloupean Children through Next-Generation Sequencing

Authors: Lydia Foucan, Laurent Larifla, Emmanuelle Durand, Christine Rambhojan, Veronique Dhennin, Jean-Marc Lacorte, Philippe Froguel, Amelie Bonnefond

Abstract:

In the population of Guadeloupe Island (472,124 inhabitants and 80% of subjects of African descent), overweight and obesity were estimated at 23% and 9% respectively among children. High prevalence of diabetes has been reported (~10%) in the adult population. Nevertheless, no study has investigated the contribution of gene mutations to childhood obesity in this population. We aimed to investigate rare genetic mutations in genes involved in monogenic obesity or diabetes in obese Afro-Caribbean children from Guadeloupe Island using next-generation sequencing. The present investigation included unrelated obese children, from a previous study on overweight conducted in Guadeloupe Island in 2013. We sequenced coding regions of 59 genes involved in monogenic obesity or diabetes. A total of 25 obese schoolchildren (with Z-score of body mass index [BMI]: 2.0 to 2.8) were screened for rare mutations (non-synonymous, splice-site, or insertion/deletion) in 59 genes. Mean age of the study population was 12.4 ± 1.1 years. Seventeen children (68%) had insulin-resistance (HOMA-IR > 3.16). A family history of obesity (mother or father) was observed in eight children and three of the accompanying parent presented with type 2 diabetes. None of the children had gonadotrophic abnormality or mental retardation. We detected five rare heterozygous mutations, in four genes involved in monogenic obesity, in five different obese children: MC4R p.Ile301Thr and SIM1 p.Val326Thrfs*43 mutations which were pathogenic; SIM1 p.Ser343Pro and SH2B1 p.Pro90His mutations which were likely pathogenic; and NTRK2 p.Leu140Phe that was of uncertain significance. In parallel, we identified seven carriers of mutation in ABCC8 or KCNJ11 (involved in monogenic diabetes), which were of uncertain significance (KCNJ11 p.Val13Met, KCNJ11 p.Val151Met, ABCC8 p.Lys1521Asn and ABCC8 p.Ala625Val). Rare pathogenic or likely pathogenic mutations, linked to severe obesity were detected in more than 15% of this Afro-Caribbean population at high risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Keywords: childhood obesity, MC4R, monogenic obesity, SIM1

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5 Induced Breeding of Neolissochilus hexagonolepis Using Pituitary and Synthetic Hormone under the Agro-Climatic Condition of Meghalaya, India

Authors: Lydia Booney Jyrwa, Rabindra Nath Bhuyan

Abstract:

Chocolate Mahseer (Neolissochilus hexagonolepis) is one of the Mahseer species inhabiting the North-eastern region of India and is a native species to the state of Meghalaya since it can adapt and grow well under the agro climatic conditions of the region. The natural population of this fish has been declining over the years from this part of the country. The natural population of this fish has been declining over the years from this part of the country. The fish is considered as one of the endangered species of the Mahseer group, which is having tremendous scope for culture, sports and tourism. But non-availability of quality seed is a hindrance for the culture of this fish. Thus induced breeding of the fish by hormonal administration with pituitary gland and synthetic hormones is the only reliable method to procure the pure seed of the fish. Chocolate Mahseer was successfully bred at the Hatchery Complex, St. Anthony’s College, Shillong, Meghalaya by using pituitary extract and synthetic hormone viz. ovaprim, ovatide and gonopro-FH. The dose standardized is @ 4mg/kg body weight to both male and female as 1st dose and @ 7.9 mg/kg body weight only to female as 2nd dose for pituitary extract and single dose @ 0.8 ml/kg body weight to female and @ 0.3 ml/kg body weight to male of both ovaprim and ovatide, while a single dose @ 0.9 ml/kg body weight to female and @ 0.3 ml/kg body weight to male of gonopro-FH. The doses are standardized after a series of trial and error experiment performed. The fecundity of the fish was 3500 eggs/ kg body weight. The final hatching percentage achieved was 60%. The survival rate of hatchling was 50% up to fry stage. The use of synthetic hormone and positive response of the fish to the hormone will go in long way for production of quality seed of the fish which in turn help in culture of the species as the fish can be a very good candidate species for the culture in the state. This study will also help in the ranching of the fish in the natural habitat leading to conservation of the species. However, the study should be continued further for the large scale production of seeds.

Keywords: chocolate mahseer, induced breeding, pituitary extract, synthetic hormone

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4 Improving the Competency of Undergraduate Nursing Students in Addressing a Timely Public Health Issue

Authors: Tsu-Yin Wu, Jenni Hoffman, Lydia McMurrows, Sarah Lally

Abstract:

Recent events of the Flint Water Crisis and elevated lead levels in Detroit public school water have highlighted a specific public health disparity and shown the need for better education of healthcare providers on lead education. Identifying children and pregnant women with a high risk for lead poisoning and ensuring lead testing is completed is critical. The purpose of this study is to explore the impact of an educational intervention on knowledge and confidence levels among nursing students enrolled in the prelicensure Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and Registered Nurse to BSN program (R2B). The study used both quantitative and qualitative research methods to assess the impact of multi-modal pedagogy on knowledge and confidence of lead screening and prevention among prelicensure and R2B nursing students. The students received lead poisoning and prevention content in addition to completing an e-learning module developed by the Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Units. A total of 115 students completed the pre-and post-test instrument that consisted of demographic, lead knowledge, and confidence items. Despite the increase of total knowledge, three dimensions of lead poisoning, and confidence from pre- to post-test scores for both groups, there was no statistical significance on the increase between prelicensure and R2B students. Thematic analysis of qualitative data showed five themes from participants' learning experiences: lead exposure, signs and symptoms of lead poisoning, screening and diagnosis, prevention, and policy and statewide issues. The study is limited by a small sample and participants recalling some correct answers from the pretest, thus, scoring higher on the post-test. The results contribute to the minimally existent literature examining a critical public health concern regarding lead health exposure and prevention education of nursing students. Incorporating such content area into the nursing curriculum is essential in ensuring that such public health disparities are mitigated.

Keywords: lead poisoning, emerging public health issue, community health, nursing edducation

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3 Benefits of Using Social Media and Collaborative Online Platforms in PBL

Authors: Susanna Graziano, Lydia Krstic Ward

Abstract:

The purpose of this presentation is to demonstrate the steps of using multimedia and collaborative platforms in project-based learning. The presentation will demonstrate the stages of the learning project with various components of independent and collaborative learning, where students research the topic, share information, prepare a survey, use social media (Facebook, Instagram, WhasApp) and collaborative platforms (wikispaces.com and Google docs) to collect, analyze and process data, then produce reports and logos to be displayed as a final product. At the beginning of the presentation participants will answer a questionnaire about project based learning and share their experience on using social media, real–world project work and collaborative learning. Using a PPP, the presentation will walk participants through the steps of a completed project where tertiary education students are involved in putting together a multimedia campaign for safe driving in Kuwait. The research component of the project entails taking a holistic view on the problem of the high death rate in traffic accidents. The final goal of the project is to lead students to raise public awareness about the importance of safe driving. The project steps involve using the social media and collaborative platforms for collecting data and sharing the required materials to be used in the final product – a display of written reports, slogans and videos, as well as oral presentations. The same structure can be used to organize a multimedia campaign focusing on other issues, whilst scaffolding on students’ ability to brainstorm, retrieve information, organize it and engage in collaborative/ cooperative learning whilst being immersed in content-based learning as well as in authentic tasks. More specifically, the project we carried out at Box Hill College was a real-world one and involved a multimedia Campaign for Safe Driving since reckless driving is one of the major problems in the country. The idea for the whole project started by a presentation given by a board member of the Kuwaiti Society for Traffic Safety who was invited to college and spoke about: • Driving laws in the country, • What causes car accidents, • Driving safety tips. The principal goal of this project was to let students consider problems of traffic in Kuwait from different points of view. They also had to address the number and causes of accidents, evaluate the effectiveness of the local traffic law in order to send a warning about the importance of safe driving and, finally, suggest ways of its improvement. Benefits included: • Engagement, • Autonomy, • Motivation, • Content knowledge, • Language mastery, • Enhanced critical thinking, • Increased metacognitive awareness, • Improved social skills, • Authentic experience.

Keywords: social media, online learning platforms, collaborative platforms, project based learning

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2 Unifying RSV Evolutionary Dynamics and Epidemiology Through Phylodynamic Analyses

Authors: Lydia Tan, Philippe Lemey, Lieselot Houspie, Marco Viveen, Darren Martin, Frank Coenjaerts

Abstract:

Introduction: Human respiratory syncytial virus (hRSV) is the leading cause of severe respiratory tract infections in infants under the age of two. Genomic substitutions and related evolutionary dynamics of hRSV are of great influence on virus transmission behavior. The evolutionary patterns formed are due to a precarious interplay between the host immune response and RSV, thereby selecting the most viable and less immunogenic strains. Studying genomic profiles can teach us which genes and consequent proteins play an important role in RSV survival and transmission dynamics. Study design: In this study, genetic diversity and evolutionary rate analysis were conducted on 36 RSV subgroup B whole genome sequences and 37 subgroup A genome sequences. Clinical RSV isolates were obtained from nasopharyngeal aspirates and swabs of children between 2 weeks and 5 years old of age. These strains, collected during epidemic seasons from 2001 to 2011 in the Netherlands and Belgium by either conventional or 454-sequencing. Sequences were analyzed for genetic diversity, recombination events, synonymous/non-synonymous substitution ratios, epistasis, and translational consequences of mutations were mapped to known 3D protein structures. We used Bayesian statistical inference to estimate the rate of RSV genome evolution and the rate of variability across the genome. Results: The A and B profiles were described in detail and compared to each other. Overall, the majority of the whole RSV genome is highly conserved among all strains. The attachment protein G was the most variable protein and its gene had, similar to the non-coding regions in RSV, more elevated (two-fold) substitution rates than other genes. In addition, the G gene has been identified as the major target for diversifying selection. Overall, less gene and protein variability was found within RSV-B compared to RSV-A and most protein variation between the subgroups was found in the F, G, SH and M2-2 proteins. For the F protein mutations and correlated amino acid changes are largely located in the F2 ligand-binding domain. The small hydrophobic phosphoprotein and nucleoprotein are the most conserved proteins. The evolutionary rates were similar in both subgroups (A: 6.47E-04, B: 7.76E-04 substitution/site/yr), but estimates of the time to the most recent common ancestor were much lower for RSV-B (B: 19, A: 46.8 yrs), indicating that there is more turnover in this subgroup. Conclusion: This study provides a detailed description of whole RSV genome mutations, the effect on translation products and the first estimate of the RSV genome evolution tempo. The immunogenic G protein seems to require high substitution rates in order to select less immunogenic strains and other conserved proteins are most likely essential to preserve RSV viability. The resulting G gene variability makes its protein a less interesting target for RSV intervention methods. The more conserved RSV F protein with less antigenic epitope shedding is, therefore, more suitable for developing therapeutic strategies or vaccines.

Keywords: drug target selection, epidemiology, respiratory syncytial virus, RSV

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1 A Prospective Neurosurgical Registry Evaluating the Clinical Care of Traumatic Brain Injury Patients Presenting to Mulago National Referral Hospital in Uganda

Authors: Benjamin J. Kuo, Silvia D. Vaca, Joao Ricardo Nickenig Vissoci, Catherine A. Staton, Linda Xu, Michael Muhumuza, Hussein Ssenyonjo, John Mukasa, Joel Kiryabwire, Lydia Nanjula, Christine Muhumuza, Henry E. Rice, Gerald A. Grant, Michael M. Haglund

Abstract:

Background: Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is disproportionally concentrated in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), with the odds of dying from TBI in Uganda more than 4 times higher than in high income countries (HICs). The disparities in the injury incidence and outcome between LMICs and resource-rich settings have led to increased health outcomes research for TBIs and their associated risk factors in LMICs. While there have been increasing TBI studies in LMICs over the last decade, there is still a need for more robust prospective registries. In Uganda, a trauma registry implemented in 2004 at the Mulago National Referral Hospital (MNRH) showed that RTI is the major contributor (60%) of overall mortality in the casualty department. While the prior registry provides information on injury incidence and burden, it’s limited in scope and doesn’t follow patients longitudinally throughout their hospital stay nor does it focus specifically on TBIs. And although these retrospective analyses are helpful for benchmarking TBI outcomes, they make it hard to identify specific quality improvement initiatives. The relationship among epidemiology, patient risk factors, clinical care, and TBI outcomes are still relatively unknown at MNRH. Objective: The objectives of this study are to describe the processes of care and determine risk factors predictive of poor outcomes for TBI patients presenting to a single tertiary hospital in Uganda. Methods: Prospective data were collected for 563 TBI patients presenting to a tertiary hospital in Kampala from 1 June – 30 November 2016. Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap) was used to systematically collect variables spanning 8 categories. Univariate and multivariate analysis were conducted to determine significant predictors of mortality. Results: 563 TBI patients were enrolled from 1 June – 30 November 2016. 102 patients (18%) received surgery, 29 patients (5.1%) intended for surgery failed to receive it, and 251 patients (45%) received non-operative management. Overall mortality was 9.6%, which ranged from 4.7% for mild and moderate TBI to 55% for severe TBI patients with GCS 3-5. Within each TBI severity category, mortality differed by management pathway. Variables predictive of mortality were TBI severity, more than one intracranial bleed, failure to receive surgery, high dependency unit admission, ventilator support outside of surgery, and hospital arrival delayed by more than 4 hours. Conclusions: The overall mortality rate of 9.6% in Uganda for TBI is high, and likely underestimates the true TBI mortality. Furthermore, the wide-ranging mortality (3-82%), high ICU fatality, and negative impact of care delays suggest shortcomings with the current triaging practices. Lack of surgical intervention when needed was highly predictive of mortality in TBI patients. Further research into the determinants of surgical interventions, quality of step-up care, and prolonged care delays are needed to better understand the complex interplay of variables that affect patient outcome. These insights guide the development of future interventions and resource allocation to improve patient outcomes.

Keywords: care continuum, global neurosurgery, Kampala Uganda, LMIC, Mulago, prospective registry, traumatic brain injury

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