Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 20

Search results for: Marwan Abdelbaset

20 Neuroprotective Effect of Crocus sativus against Cerebral Ischemia in Rats

Authors: Rehab F. Abdel-Rahman, Sally A. El Awdan, Rehab R. Hegazy, Dina F. Mansour, Hanan A. Ogaly, Marwan Abdelbaset


Disorders of the cerebral circulation are the leading cause of numerous neurological and psychiatric illnesses. The transient middle cerebral artery occlusion model (MCAO) is considered to be a reliable and reproducible rodent model of cerebral ischemia. The purpose of the current study was to examine the neuroprotective effects of Crocus sativus (saffron) in a rat model of left middle cerebral artery MCAO. Male Wistar rats were anesthetized and subjected to 1 h of MCAO followed by 48 h reperfusion or sham surgery. One group of the ischemia operated animals was kept as left brain ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). Another 2 operated groups received saffron extract (100 or 200 mg/kg, i.p) four times (60 min before the surgery, during the surgery, and on days 1 and 2 after the occlusion). During the experiment, behavioral tests were performed. After 72 h the animals were euthanized and their left brain hemispheres were used in the biochemical, histopathological, and immunohistochemical studies. Saffron administration revealed an improvement in I/R-induced alteration of locomotor balance and coordination ability of rats. Moreover, saffron decreased the brain content of malondialdehyde, nitric oxide, brain natriuretic peptide and vascular endothelial growth factor with significant increase of reduced glutathione. Immunohistochemical evaluation of caspase-3 and Bax protein expression revealed reduction in I/R-enhanced apoptosis in saffron treated rats. In conclusion, saffron treatment decreases ischemic brain injury in association with inhibition of apoptotic and oxidative cell death in a dose dependent manner.

Keywords: caspase-3, cerebral ischemia, Crocus sativus, rats, vascular endothelial growth factor

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19 Electro Spinning in Nanotechnology

Authors: Mahoud Alfama, Meloud Yones, Abdelbaset Zroga, Abdelati Elalem


Electrospinning has been recognized as an efficient technique for the fabrication of polymer nanofibers. Various polymers have been successfully electrospun into ultrafine fibers in recent years mostly in solvent solution and some in melt form. Potential applications based on such fibers specifically their use as reinforcement in nanocomposite development have been realized. In this paper we examine -electrospinning by providing a brief description of the theory behind the process examining the effect of changing the process parameters on fiber morphology, and discussing the potential applications and impacts of electrospinning on the field of tissue engineering.

Keywords: nanotechnology, electro spinning, reinforced materials

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18 Brainwave Classification for Brain Balancing Index (BBI) via 3D EEG Model Using k-NN Technique

Authors: N. Fuad, M. N. Taib, R. Jailani, M. E. Marwan


In this paper, the comparison between k-Nearest Neighbor (kNN) algorithms for classifying the 3D EEG model in brain balancing is presented. The EEG signal recording was conducted on 51 healthy subjects. Development of 3D EEG models involves pre-processing of raw EEG signals and construction of spectrogram images. Then, maximum PSD values were extracted as features from the model. There are three indexes for the balanced brain; index 3, index 4 and index 5. There are significant different of the EEG signals due to the brain balancing index (BBI). Alpha-α (8–13 Hz) and beta-β (13–30 Hz) were used as input signals for the classification model. The k-NN classification result is 88.46% accuracy. These results proved that k-NN can be used in order to predict the brain balancing application.

Keywords: power spectral density, 3D EEG model, brain balancing, kNN

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17 Characterization of 3D-MRP for Analyzing of Brain Balancing Index (BBI) Pattern

Authors: N. Fuad, M. N. Taib, R. Jailani, M. E. Marwan


This paper discusses on power spectral density (PSD) characteristics which are extracted from three-dimensional (3D) electroencephalogram (EEG) models. The EEG signal recording was conducted on 150 healthy subjects. Development of 3D EEG models involves pre-processing of raw EEG signals and construction of spectrogram images. Then, the values of maximum PSD were extracted as features from the model. These features are analysed using mean relative power (MRP) and different mean relative power (DMRP) technique to observe the pattern among different brain balancing indexes. The results showed that by implementing these techniques, the pattern of brain balancing indexes can be clearly observed. Some patterns are indicates between index 1 to index 5 for left frontal (LF) and right frontal (RF).

Keywords: power spectral density, 3D EEG model, brain balancing, mean relative power, different mean relative power

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16 State of Play of Mobile Government Apps on Google Play Store

Authors: Abdelbaset Rabaiah


e-Government mobile applications provide an extension for effective e-government services in today’s omniconnected world. They constitute part of m-government platforms. This study explores the usefulness, availability, discoverability and maturity of such applications. While this study impacts theory by addressing a relatively lacking area, it impacts practice more. The outcomes of this study suggest valuable recommendations for practitioners-developers of e-government applications. The methodology followed is to examine a large number of e-government smartphone applications. The focus is on applications available at the Google Play Store. Moreover, the study investigates applications published on government portals of a number of countries. A sample of 15 countries is researched. The results show a diversity in the level of discoverability, development, maturity, and usage of smartphone apps dedicated for use of e-government services. It was found that there are major issues in discovering e-government applications on both the Google Play Store and as-well-as on local government portals. The study found that only a fraction of mobile government applications was published on the Play Store. Only 19% of apps were multilingual, and 43% were developed by third parties including private individuals. Further analysis was made, and important recommendations are suggested in this paper for a better utilization of e-government smartphone applications. These recommendations will result in better discoverability, maturity, and usefulness of e-government applications.

Keywords: mobile applications, e-government, m-government, Google Play Store

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15 CoP-Networks: Virtual Spaces for New Faculty’s Professional Development in the 21st Higher Education

Authors: Eman AbuKhousa, Marwan Z. Bataineh


The 21st century higher education and globalization challenge new faculty members to build effective professional networks and partnership with industry in order to accelerate their growth and success. This creates the need for community of practice (CoP)-oriented development approaches that focus on cognitive apprenticeship while considering individual predisposition and future career needs. This work adopts data mining, clustering analysis, and social networking technologies to present the CoP-Network as a virtual space that connects together similar career-aspiration individuals who are socially influenced to join and engage in a process for domain-related knowledge and practice acquisitions. The CoP-Network model can be integrated into higher education to extend traditional graduate and professional development programs.

Keywords: clustering analysis, community of practice, data mining, higher education, new faculty challenges, social network, social influence, professional development

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14 Development of Mobile EEF Learning System (MEEFLS) for Mobile Learning Implementation in Kolej Poly-Tech MARA (KPTM)

Authors: M. E. Marwan, A. R. Madar, N. Fuad


Mobile learning (m-learning) is a new method in teaching and learning process which combines technology of mobile device with learning materials. It can enhance student's engagement in learning activities and facilitate them to access the learning materials at anytime and anywhere. In Kolej Poly-Tech Mara (KPTM), this method is seen as an important effort in teaching practice and to improve student learning performance. The aim of this paper is to discuss the development of m-learning application called Mobile EEF Learning System (MEEFLS) to be implemented for Electric and Electronic Fundamentals course using Flash, XML (Extensible Markup Language) and J2ME (Java 2 micro edition). System Development Life Cycle (SDLC) was used as an application development approach. It has three modules in this application such as notes or course material, exercises and video. MEELFS development is seen as a tool or a pilot test for m-learning in KPTM.

Keywords: flash, mobile device, mobile learning, teaching and learning, SDLC, XML

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13 Protective Role of CoQ10 or L-Carnitine on the Integrity of the Myocardium in Doxorubicin Induced Toxicity

Authors: Gehan A. Hegazy, Hesham N. Mustafa, Sally A. El Awdan, Marawan AbdelBaset


Doxorubicin (DOX) is a chemotherapeutic agent used for the treatment of different cancers and its clinical usage is hindered by the oxidative injury-related cardiotoxicity. This work aims to declare if the harmful effects of DOX on the heart can be alleviated with the use of Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) or L-carnitine. The study was performed on seventy-two female Wistar albino rats divided into six groups, 12 animals each: Control group; DOX group (10 mg/kg); CoQ10 group (200 mg/kg); L-carnitine group (100 mg/kg); DOX + CoQ10 group; DOX + L-carnitine group. CoQ10 and L-carnitine treatment orally started five days before a single dose of 10 mg/kg DOX that injected intraperitoneally (IP) then the treatment continued for ten days. At the end of the study, serum biochemical parameters of cardiac damage, oxidative stress indices, and histopathological changes were investigated. CoQ10 or L-carnitine showed noticeable effects in improving cardiac functions evidenced reducing serum enzymes as serum interleukin-1 beta (IL-1), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-), leptin, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), Cardiotrophin-1, Troponin-I and Troponin-T. Also, alleviate oxidative stress, decrease of cardiac Malondialdehyde (MDA), Nitric oxide (NO) and restoring cardiac reduced glutathione levels to normal levels. Both corrected the cardiac alterations histologically and ultrastructurally. With visible improvements in -SMA, vimentin and eNOS immunohistochemical markers. CoQ10 or L-carnitine supplementation improves the functional and structural integrity of the myocardium.

Keywords: CoQ10, doxorubicin, L-Carnitine, cardiotoxicity

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12 Enhancement of Learning Style in Kolej Poly-Tech MARA (KPTM) via Mobile EEF Learning System (MEEFLS)

Authors: M. E. Marwan, A. R. Madar, N. Fuad


Mobile communication provides access to the outside world without borders everywhere and at any time. The learning method that related to mobile communication technology is known as mobile learning (M-learning). It is a method that communicates learning materials with mobile device technology. The purpose of this method is to increase the interest in learning among students and assist them in obtaining learning materials at Kolej Poly-Tech MARA (KPTM) in order to improve the student’s performance in their study and to encourage educators to diversify the teaching practices. This paper discusses the student’s awareness for enhancement of learning style using mobile technologies and their readiness to apply the elements of mobile learning in learning to improve performance and interest in learning among students. An application called Mobile EEF Learning System (MEEFLS) has been developed as a tool to be used as a pilot test in KPTM.

Keywords: awareness, mobile learning, MEEFLS, teaching and learning, readiness

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11 Phonological and Syntactic Evidence from Arabic in Favor of Biolinguistics

Authors: Marwan Jarrah


This research paper provides two pieces of phonological and syntactic evidence from Arabic for biolinguistics perspective of language processing. The first piece of evidence concerns the instances where a singular noun is converted to a plural noun in Arabic. Based on the findings of several research papers, this study shows that a singular word does not lose any of its moras when it is pluralized either regularly or irregularly. This mora conservation principle complies with the general physical law of the conservation of mass which states that mass is neither created nor destroyed but changed from one form into another. The second piece of evidence concerns the observation that when the object in some Arabic dialects including Jordanian Arabic and Najdi Arabic is a topic and positioned in situ (i.e. after the verb), the verb agrees with it, something that generates an agreeing inflection marker of the verb that agrees in Number, Person, and Gender with the in-situ topicalized object. This interaction between the verb and the object in such cases is invoked because of the extra feature the object bears, i.e. TOPIC feature. We suggest that such an interaction complies with the general natural law that elements become active when they, e.g., get an additional electron, when the mass number is not equal to the atomic number.

Keywords: biolinguistics, Arabic, physics, interaction

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10 A Ferutinin Analogue with Enhanced Potency and Selectivity against Estrogen Receptor Positive Breast Cancer Cells in vitro

Authors: Remi Safi, Aline Hamade, Najat Bteich, Jamal El Saghir, Mona Diab Assaf, Marwan El-Sabban, Fadia Najjar


Estrogen is considered a risk factor for breast cancer since it promotes breast-cell proliferation. The jaesckeanadiol-3-p-hydroxyphenylpropanoate, a hemi-synthetic analogue of the natural phytoestrogen ferutinin (jaesckeanadiol-p-hydroxybenzoate), is designed to be devoid of estrogenic activity. This analogue induces a cytotoxic effect 30 times higher than that of ferutinin towards MCF-7 breast cancer cell line. We compared these two compounds with respect to their effect on proliferation, cell cycle distribution and cancer stem-like cells in the MCF-7 cell line. Treatment with ferutinin (30 μM) and its analogue (1 μM) produced a significant accumulation of cells at the pre G0/G1 cell cycle phase and triggered apoptosis. Importantly, this compound retains its anti-proliferative activity against breast cancer stem/progenitor cells that are naturally insensitive to ferutinin at the same dose. These results position ferutinin analogue as an effective compound inhibiting the proliferation of estrogen-dependent breast cancer cells and consistently targeting their stem-like cells.

Keywords: ferutinin, hemi-synthetic analogue, breast cancer, estrogen, stem/progenitor cells

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9 Evaluation of the Golden Proportion and Golden Standard of Maxillary Anterior Teeth in Relation to Smile Attractiveness

Authors: Marwan Ahmed Swileh, Amal Hussein Abuaffan


Objective: This study aimed to explore the existence of golden proportion (GP) between the widths of maxillary anterior teeth and golden standard (GS) for width to height ratio of maxillary central incisor in individuals with attractive and non-attractive smiles. Materials and methods: A total of 82 females were recruited and divided into 2 groups: attractive smile (n= 41) and non-attractive smile (n= 41). Frontal photographs were taken, scanned, and saved on a personal computer. The apparent mesiodistal width of each anterior tooth was measured. The data were analyzed using the appropriate statistical tests at p-value < 0.05. Results: Frequency of GP was very low among the total sample, and most proportions were higher than GP. No significant differences were found between both groups in relation to central-to-lateral ratio while significant differences were found in relation to canine-to-lateral ratio. Similarly, most proportions of width to height ratio were higher than GS. Difference between groups was significant for left side and for both sides (p < 0.05) but was not for right side (p > 0.05). Conclusion: Frequency of golden proportion was very low among the study population. Smile attractiveness is not related that much to the proportions between the teeth.

Keywords: golden proportion, golden standard, attractive smile, esthetic, anterior teeth

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8 Efficacy of Modified Bottom Boards to Control Varroa Mite (Varroa Destructor) in Honeybee Colonies

Authors: Marwan Keshlaf, Hassan Fellah


This study was designed to test whether hive bottom boards modified with polyvinyl chloride pipe or screen-mesh reduces number of Varroa mites in naturally infested honeybee colonies comparing to chemical control. Fifty six colonies distributed equally between two location each received one of four experimental treatment 1) conventional solid board “control”, 2) Apistan in conventional solid board, 3) Mesh bottom board and 4) tube bottom board. Varroa infestation level on both adult bees and on capped brood was estimated. Stored pollen, capped brood area and honey production were also measured. Results of varroa infestation were inconsistent between apiaries. In apiary 1, colonies with Apistan had fewer Varroa destructor than other treatments, but this benefit was not apparent in Apiary 2. There were no effects of modified bottom boards on bee flight activity, brood production, honey yield and stored pollen. We conclude that the efficacy of modified bottom boards in reducing varroa mites population in bee colonies remains uncertain due to observed differences of hygienic behavior.

Keywords: Apis mellifera, modified bottom boards, Varroa destructor, Honeybee colonies

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7 Study of Hypertension at Sohag City: Upper Egypt Experience

Authors: Aly Kassem, Eman Sapet, Eman Abdelbaset, Hosam Mahmoud


Objective: Hypertension is an important public health challenge being one of the most common worldwide disease-affecting human. Our aim is to study the clinical characteristics, therapeutic regimens, treatment compliance, and risk factors in a sector of of hypertensive patients at Sohag City. Subject and Methods: A cross sectional study; conducted in Sohag city; it involved 520 patients; males (45.7 %) and females (54.3 %). Their ages ranged between 35-85 years. BP measurements, BMI, blood glucose, Serum creatinine, urine analysis, serum Lipids, blood picture and ECG were done all the studied patients. Results: Hypertension presented more between non-smokers (72.55%), females (54.3%), educated patients (50.99%) and patients with low SES (54.9%). CAD presented in (51.63%) of patients, while laboratory investigations showed hyperglycaemia in (28.7%), anemia in (18.3%), high serum creatinine level in (8.49%) and proteinuria in (10.45%) of patient. Adequate BP control was achieved in (49.67%); older patients had lower adequacy of BP control in spite of the extensive use of multiple-drug therapy. Most hypertensive patients had more than one coexistent CV risk factor. Aging, being a female (54.3%), DM (32.3%), family history of hypertension (28.7%), family history of CAD (25.4%), and obesity (10%) were the common contributing risk factors. ACE-inhibitors were prescribed in (58.16%), Beta-blockers in (34.64%) of the patients. Monotherapy was prescribed for (41.17%) of the patients. (75.81%) of patients had regular use of their drug regimens. (49.67%) only of patients had their condition under control, the number of drugs was inversely related to BP control. Conclusion: Hypertensive patients in Sohag city had a profile of high CV risks, and poor blood pressure control particularly in the elderly. A multidisciplinary approach for routine clinical check-up, follow-up, physicians and patients training, prescribing simple once-daily regimens and encouraging life style modifications are recommended. Anti hypertensives, hypertension, elderly patients, risk factors, treatment compliance.

Keywords: anti hypertensives, hypertension, elderly patients, risk factors, treatment compliance

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6 Reverse Twin Block with Expansion Screw for Treatment of Skeletal Class III Malocclusion in Growing Patient: Case Report

Authors: Alfrina Marwan, Erna Sulistyawati


Class III malocclusion shows both skeletal and dentoalveolar component. Sketal Class III malocclusion can have variants in different region, maxilla or mandibular. Skeletal Class III malocclusion during growth period is considered to treat to prevent its severity in adulthood. Orthopedics treatment of skeletal Class III malocclusion in growing patient can be treated by using reverse twin block with expansion screw to modify the growth pattern. The objective of this case report was to describe the functional correction of skeletal Class III maloclussion using reverse twin block with expansion screw in growing patient. A patient with concave profile came with a chief complaint of aesthetic problems. The cephalometric analysis showed that patient had skeletal Class III malocclusion (ANB -50, SNA 75º, Wits appraisal -3 mm) with anterior cross bite and deep bite (overjet -3 mm, overbite 6 mm). In this case report, the patient was treated with reverse twin block appliance with expansion screw. After three months of treatment, the skeletal problems have been corrected (ANB -1°), overjet, overbite and aesthetic were improved. Reverse twin block appliance with expansion screw can be used as orthopedics treatment for skeletal Class III malocclusion in growing patient and can improve the aesthetic with great satisfaction which was the main complaint in this patient.

Keywords: maxilla retrognatism, reverse twin block, skeletal class III malocclusion, growing patient

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5 Antimicrobial Activity of Some Plant Extracts against Clinical Pathogen and Candida Species

Authors: Marwan Khalil Qader, Arshad Mohammad Abdullah


Antimicrobial resistance is a major cause of significant morbidity and mortality globally. Seven plant extracts (Plantago mediastepposa, Quercusc infectoria, Punic granatum, Thymus lcotschyana, Ginger officeinals, Rhus angustifolia and Cinnamon) were collected from different regions of Kurdistan region of Iraq. These plants’ extracts were dissolved in absolute ethanol and distillate water, after which they were assayed in vitro as an antimicrobial activity against Candida tropicalis, Candida albicanus, Candida dublinensis, Candida krusei and Candida glabrata also against 2 Gram-positive (Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus) and 3 Gram-negative bacteria (Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Klebsilla pneumonia). The antimicrobial activity was determined in ethanol extracts and distilled water extracts of these plants. The ethanolic extracts of Q. infectoria showed the maximum activity against all species of Candida fungus. The minimum inhibition zone of the Punic granatum ethanol extracts was 0.2 mg/ml for all microorganisms tested. Klebsilla pneumonia was the most sensitive bacterial strain to Quercusc infectoria and Rhus angustifolia ethanol extracts. Among both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria tested with MIC of 0.2 mg/ml, the minimum inhibition zone of Ginger officeinals D. W. extracts was 0.2 mg/mL against Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Klebsilla pneumonia. The most sensitive bacterial strain to Thymus lcotschyana and Plantago mediastepposa D.W. extracts was S. aureus and E. coli.

Keywords: antimicrobial activity, pathogenic bacteria, plant extracts, chemical systems engineering

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4 Corneal Confocal Microscopy As a Surrogate Marker of Neuronal Pathology In Schizophrenia

Authors: Peter W. Woodruff, Georgios Ponirakis, Reem Ibrahim, Amani Ahmed, Hoda Gad, Ioannis N. Petropoulos, Adnan Khan, Ahmed Elsotouhy, Surjith Vattoth, Mahmoud K. M. Alshawwaf, Mohamed Adil Shah Khoodoruth, Marwan Ramadan, Anjushri Bhagat, James Currie, Ziyad Mahfoud, Hanadi Al Hamad, Ahmed Own, Peter Haddad, Majid Alabdulla, Rayaz A. Malik


Introduction:- We aimed to test the hypothesis that, using corneal confocal microscopy (a non-invasive method for assessing corneal nerve fibre integrity), patients with schizophrenia would show neuronal abnormalities compared with healthy participants. Schizophrenia is a neurodevelopmental and progressive neurodegenerative disease, for which there are no validated biomarkers. Corneal confocal microscopy (CCM) is a non-invasive ophthalmic imaging biomarker that can be used to detect neuronal abnormalities in neuropsychiatric syndromes. Methods:- Patients with schizophrenia (DSM-V criteria) without other causes of peripheral neuropathy and healthy controls underwent CCM, vibration perception threshold (VPT) and sudomotor function testing. The diagnostic accuracy of CCM in distinguishing patients from controls was assessed using the area under the curve (AUC) of the Receiver Operating Characterstics (ROC) curve. Findings:- Participants with schizophrenia (n=17) and controls (n=38) with comparable age (35.7±8.5 vs 35.6±12.2, P=0.96) were recruited. Patients with schizophrenia had significantly higher body weight (93.9±25.5 vs 77.1±10.1, P=0.02), lower Low Density Lipoproteins (2.6±1.0 vs 3.4±0.7, P=0.02), but comparable systolic and diastolic blood pressure, HbA1c, total cholesterol, triglycerides and High Density Lipoproteins were comparable with control participants. Patients with schizophrenia had significantly lower corneal nerve fiber density (CNFD, fibers/mm2) (23.5±7.8 vs 35.6±6.5, p<0.0001), branch density (CNBD, branches/mm2) (34.4±26.9 vs 98.1±30.6, p<0.0001), and fiber length (CNFL, mm/mm2) (14.3±4.7 vs 24.2±3.9, p<0.0001) but no difference in VPT (6.1±3.1 vs 4.5±2.8, p=0.12) and electrochemical skin conductance (61.0±24.0 vs 68.9±12.3, p=0.23) compared with controls. The diagnostic accuracy of CNFD, CNBD and CNFL to distinguish patients with schizophrenia from healthy controls were, according to the AUC, (95% CI): 87.0% (76.8-98.2), 93.2% (84.2-102.3), 93.2% (84.4-102.1), respectively. Conclusion:- In conclusion, CCM can be used to help identify neuronal changes and has a high diagnostic accuracy to distinguish subjects with schizophrenia from healthy controls.


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3 Modeling the Effects of Leachate-Impacted Groundwater on the Water Quality of a Large Tidal River

Authors: Emery Coppola Jr., Marwan Sadat, Il Kim, Diane Trube, Richard Kurisko


Contamination sites like landfills often pose significant risks to receptors like surface water bodies. Surface water bodies are often a source of recreation, including fishing and swimming, which not only enhances their value but also serves as a direct exposure pathway to humans, increasing their need for protection from water quality degradation. In this paper, a case study presents the potential effects of leachate-impacted groundwater from a large closed sanitary landfill on the surface water quality of the nearby Raritan River, situated in New Jersey. The study, performed over a two year period, included in-depth field evaluation of both the groundwater and surface water systems, and was supplemented by computer modeling. The analysis required delineation of a representative average daily groundwater discharge from the Landfill shoreline into the large, highly tidal Raritan River, with a corresponding estimate of daily mass loading of potential contaminants of concern. The average daily groundwater discharge into the river was estimated from a high-resolution water level study and a 24-hour constant-rate aquifer pumping test. The significant tidal effects induced on groundwater levels during the aquifer pumping test were filtered out using an advanced algorithm, from which aquifer parameter values were estimated using conventional curve match techniques. The estimated hydraulic conductivity values obtained from individual observation wells closely agree with tidally-derived values for the same wells. Numerous models were developed and used to simulate groundwater contaminant transport and surface water quality impacts. MODFLOW with MT3DMS was used to simulate the transport of potential contaminants of concern from the down-gradient edge of the Landfill to the Raritan River shoreline. A surface water dispersion model based upon a bathymetric and flow study of the river was used to simulate the contaminant concentrations over space within the river. The modeling results helped demonstrate that because of natural attenuation, the Landfill does not have a measurable impact on the river, which was confirmed by an extensive surface water quality study.

Keywords: groundwater flow and contaminant transport modeling, groundwater/surface water interaction, landfill leachate, surface water quality modeling

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2 Fatigue Truck Modification Factor for Design Truck (CL-625)

Authors: Mohamad Najari, Gilbert Grondin, Marwan El-Rich


Design trucks in standard codes are selected based on the amount of damage they cause on structures-specifically bridges- and roads to represent the real traffic loads. Some limited numbers of trucks are run on a bridge one at a time and the damage on the bridge is recorded for each truck. One design track is also run on the same bridge “n” times -“n” is the number of trucks used previously- to calculate the damage of the design truck on the same bridge. To make these damages equal a reduction factor is needed for that specific design truck in the codes. As the limited number of trucks cannot be the exact representative of real traffic through the life of the structure, these reduction factors are not accurately calculated and they should be modified accordingly. Started on July 2004, the vehicle load data were collected in six weigh in motion (WIM) sites owned by Alberta Transportation for eight consecutive years. This database includes more than 200 million trucks. Having these data gives the opportunity to compare the effect of any standard fatigue trucks weigh and the real traffic load on the fatigue life of the bridges which leads to a modification for the fatigue truck factor in the code. To calculate the damage for each truck, the truck is run on the bridge, moment history of the detail under study is recorded, stress range cycles are counted, and then damage is calculated using available S-N curves. A 2000 lines FORTRAN code has been developed to perform the analysis and calculate the damages of the trucks in the database for all eight fatigue categories according to Canadian Institute of Steel Construction (CSA S-16). Stress cycles are counted using rain flow counting method. The modification factors for design truck (CL-625) are calculated for two different bridge configurations and ten span lengths varying from 1 m to 200 m. The two considered bridge configurations are single-span bridge and four span bridge. This was found to be sufficient and representative for a simply supported span, positive moment in end spans of bridges with two or more spans, positive moment in interior spans of three or more spans, and the negative moment at an interior support of multi-span bridges. The moment history of the mid span is recorded for single-span bridge and, exterior positive moment, interior positive moment, and support negative moment are recorded for four span bridge. The influence lines are expressed by a polynomial expression obtained from a regression analysis of the influence lines obtained from SAP2000. It is found that for design truck (CL-625) fatigue truck factor is varying from 0.35 to 0.55 depending on span lengths and bridge configuration. The detail results will be presented in the upcoming papers. This code can be used for any design trucks available in standard codes.

Keywords: bridge, fatigue, fatigue design truck, rain flow analysis, FORTRAN

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1 Seroprevalence of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-Cov) Infection among Healthy and High Risk Individuals in Qatar

Authors: Raham El-Kahlout, Hadi Yassin, Asmaa Athani, Marwan Abou Madi, Gheyath Nasrallah


Background: Since its first isolation in September 2012, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) has diffused across 27 countries infecting more than two thousand individuals with a high case fatality rate. MERS-CoV–specific antibodies are widely found in Dromedary camel along with viral shedding of similar viruses detected in human at same region, suggesting that MERS epidemiology may be central role by camel. Interestingly, MERS-CoV has also been also reported to be asymptomatic or to cause influenza-like mild illnesses. Therefore, in a country like Qatar (bordered Saudi Arabia), where camels are widely spread, serological surveys are important to explore the role of camels in MERS-CoV transmission. However, widespread strategic serological surveillances of MERS-CoV among populations, particularly in endemic country, are infrequent. In the absence of clear epidemiological view, cross-sectional MERS antibody surveillances in human populations are of global concern. Method: We performed a comparative serological screening of 4719 healthy blood donors, 135 baseline case contacts (high risk individual), and four MERS confirmed patients (by PCR) for the presence of anti-MERS IgG. Initially, samples were screened using Euroimmune anti- MERS-CoV IgG ELISA kit, the only commercial kit available in the market and recommended by the CDC as a screening kit. To confirm ELISA test results, farther serological testing was performed for all borderline and positive samples using two assays; the anti MERS-CoV IgG and IgM Euroimmune indirect immunofluorescent test (IIFT) and pseudoviral particle neutralizing assay (PPNA). Additionally, to test cross reactivity of anti-MERS-CoV antibody with other family members of coronavirus, borderline and positive samples were tested for the presence of the of IgG antibody of the following viruses; SARS, HCoV-229E, HKU1 using the Euroimmune IIFT for SARS and HCoV-229E and ELISA for HKU1. Results: In all of 4858 screened 15 samples [10 donors (0.21%, 10/4719), 1 case contact (0.77 %, 1/130), 3 patients (75%, 3/4)] anti-MERS IgG reactive/borderline samples were seen in ELISA. However, only 7 (0.14%) of them gave positive with in IIFT and only 3 (0.06%) was confirmed by the specific anti-MERS PPNA. One of the interesting findings was, a donor, who was selected in the control group as a negative anti-MERS IgG ELISA, yield reactive for anti-MERS IgM IIFT and was confirmed with the PPNA. Further, our preliminary results showed that there was a strong cross reactivity between anti- MERS-COV IgG with both HCoV-229E or anti-HKU1 IgG, yet, no cross reactivity of SARS were found. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that MERS-CoV is not heavily circulated among the population of Qatar and this is also indicated by low number of confirmed cases (only 18) since 2012. Additionally, the presence of antibody of other pathogenic human coronavirus may cause false positive results of both ELISA and IIFT, which stress the need for more evaluation studies for the available serological assays. Conclusion: this study provides an insight about the epidemiological view for MERS-CoV in Qatar population. It also provides a performance evaluation for the available serologic tests for MERS-CoV in a view of serologic status to other human coronaviruses.

Keywords: seroprevalence, MERS-CoV, healthy individuals, Qatar

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