Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 18

Search results for: Rosalie Menon

18 Roof Integrated Photo Voltaic with Air Collection on Glasgow School of Art Campus Building: A Feasibility Study

Authors: Rosalie Menon, Angela Reid


Building integrated photovoltaic systems with air collectors (hybrid PV-T) have proved successful however there are few examples of their application in the UK. The opportunity to pull heat from behind the PV system to contribute to a building’s heating system is an efficient use of waste energy and its potential to improve the performance of the PV array is well documented. As part of Glasgow School of Art’s estate expansion, the purchase and redevelopment of an existing 1950’s college building was used as a testing vehicle for the hybrid PV-T system as an integrated element of the upper floor and roof. The primary objective of the feasibility study was to determine if hybrid PV-T was technically and financially suitable for the refurbished building. The key consideration was whether the heat recovered from the PV panels (to increase the electrical efficiency) can be usefully deployed as a heat source within the building. Dynamic thermal modelling (IES) and RetScreen Software were used to carry out the feasibility study not only to simulate overshadowing and optimise the PV-T locations but also to predict the atrium temperature profile; predict the air load for the proposed new 4 No. roof mounted air handling units and to predict the dynamic electrical efficiency of the PV element. The feasibility study demonstrates that there is an energy reduction and carbon saving to be achieved with each hybrid PV-T option however the systems are subject to lengthy payback periods and highlights the need for enhanced government subsidy schemes to reward innovation with this technology in the UK.

Keywords: building integrated, photovoltatic thermal, pre-heat air, ventilation

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17 Rotational Energy Recovery System

Authors: Vijayendra Anil Menon, Ashwath Narayan Murali


The present day vehicles do not reuse the energy expelled in running the vehicle. The energy used to run the vehicle is expelled immediately.This has remained a constant for many decades. With all the vehicles running on non-renewable resources like fossil fuels, there is an urgent need to improve efficiency of the vehicles until a reliable replacement for fossil fuels is found.Our design is based on the concept of Kinetic energy recovery systems. Though our design lies in principle with the KERS, our design can be used in day-to-day driving. With our design, efficiency of vehicles increases and fuel conservation is possible thereby reducing the carbon footprint.

Keywords: KERS, Battery, Wheels, Efficiency.

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16 Towards the Design of Gripper Independent of Substrate Surface Structures

Authors: Annika Schmidt, Ausama Hadi Ahmed, Carlo Menon


End effectors for robotic systems are becoming more and more advanced, resulting in a growing variety of gripping tasks. However, most grippers are application specific. This paper presents a gripper that interacts with an object’s surface rather than being dependent on a defined shape or size. For this purpose, ingressive and astrictive features are combined to achieve the desired gripping capabilities. The developed prototype is tested on a variety of surfaces with different hardness and roughness properties. The results show that the gripping mechanism works on all of the tested surfaces. The influence of the material properties on the amount of the supported load is also studied and the efficiency is discussed.

Keywords: claw, dry adhesion, insects, material properties

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15 Electrochemical Studies of Si, Si-Ge- and Ge-Air Batteries

Authors: R. C. Sharma, Rishabh Bansal, Prajwal Menon, Manoj K. Sharma


Silicon-air battery is highly promising for electric vehicles due to its high theoretical energy density (8470 Whkg⁻¹) and its discharge products are non-toxic. For the first time, pure silicon and germanium powders are used as anode material. Nickel wire meshes embedded with charcoal and manganese dioxide powder as cathode and concentrated potassium hydroxide is used as electrolyte. Voltage-time curves have been presented in this study for pure silicon and germanium powder and 5% and 10% germanium with silicon powder. Silicon powder cell assembly gives a stable voltage of 0.88 V for ~20 minutes while Si-Ge provides cell voltage of 0.80-0.76 V for ~10-12 minutes, and pure germanium cell provides cell voltage 0.80-0.76 V for ~30 minutes. The cell voltage is higher for concentrated (10%) sodium hydroxide solution (1.08 V) and it is stable for ~40 minutes. A sharp decrease in cell voltage beyond 40 min may be due to rapid corrosion.

Keywords: Silicon-air battery, Germanium-air battery, voltage-time curve, open circuit voltage, Anodic corrosion

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14 Interdependencies Of Culture, Economy, And Resource Availability ’ As 'Determinants Of Spatial Inequality In Cities

Authors: Shahna KC, Ar. Belay Menon, Ar. Taniya Joshua


As globalization in the era progresses, spatial inequality is turned to be one of the major concerns; the main intent of the Study is to focus on if there is any interdependencies of culture economy and resource availability on creating spatial inequality in cities. The paper tries to establish the relationship between spatial inequality – the quality of life – the DETERMINANT TRIAD (culture, economy, resource availability). Slum area of Dharavi is taken to evaluate the influence of these determinants on the quality of life as spatial inequality is evident there. Interdependencies of the determinants on creating spatial inequality is evaluated. For this, It is understood that these three parameters, i.e., culture, economy, resource availability, are determinants of urban design, each from the social, economic, environmental domains of sustainability, respectively. And there are studies individually on each of these aspects, how they determine the urban spaces, and how influential on the whole process of urbanization. Now extending the study towards the interdependencies of these three so as to find out how these trilogy shapes the urban form and space.

Keywords: spatial inequality, culture, economy, resource availability, quality of life

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13 Decomposing the Socio-Economic Inequalities in Utilization of Antenatal Care in South Asian Countries: Insight from Demographic and Health Survey

Authors: Jeetendra Yadav, Geetha Menon, Anita Pal, Rajkumar Verma


Even after encouraging maternal and child wellness programs at worldwide level, lower-middle income nations are not reached the goal set by the UN yet. This study quantified the contribution of socioeconomic determinants of inequality to the utilization of Antenatal Care in South Asian Countries. This study used data from Demographic Health Survey (DHS) of the selected countries were used, and Oaxaca decomposing were applied for socioeconomic inequalities in utilization of antenatal care. Finding from the multivariate analysis shows that mother’s age at the time of birth, birth order and interval, mother’s education, mass media exposure and economic status were significant determinants of the utilization of antenatal care services in South Asian countries. Considering, concentration index curve, the line of equity was greatest in Pakistan which followed by India and Nepal.

Keywords: antenatal care, decomposition, inequalities, South Asian countries

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12 Numerical Analysis of Prefabricated Horizontal Drain Induced Consolidation Using ABAQUS

Authors: Anjana R. Menon, Anjana Bhasi


This paper deals with the numerical analysis of Prefabricated Horizontal Drain (PHD) induced consolidation of clayey deposits, using ABAQUS. PHDs are much like Prefabricated Vertical Drains (PVDs) installed in horizontal layers, used mainly for enhancing the consolidation of clayey fill embankments, and dredged mud deposits. The efficiency of the system depends mainly on the spacing and layout of the drain. Hence, two spacing related parameters are defined, namely WH (width to horizontal spacing ratio) and VH (vertical to horizontal spacing ratio), and the finite element models are developed based on plane strain unit cell conditions under various combinations of these parameters. The analysis results, in terms of degree of consolidation (U), are compared with the established theories. Based on the analysis, a set of equations are proposed to analyse the PHD induced consolidation. The proposed method is found to be reasonably accurate. Further, the effect of PHDs at different spacing ratios, in accelerating consolidation of a clayey embankment fill is analysed in terms of pore pressure dissipation rate, and settlement. The PHD is found to accelerate the rate of pore pressure dissipation by more than 50%, thus reducing the time for final settlement significantly.

Keywords: ABAQUS, consolidation, plane strain, prefabricated horizontal drain

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11 Solid Waste Disposal Site Selection in Thiruvananthapuram Corporation Area by Data Analysis Using GIS and Remote Sensing Tools

Authors: C. Asha Poorna, P. G. Vinod, A. R. R. Menon


Currently increasing population and their activities like urbanization and industrialization generating the greatest environmental, issue called Waste. And the major problem in waste management is selection of an appropriate site for waste disposal. The selection of suitable site have constrains like environmental, economical and political considerations. In this paper we discuss the strategies to be followed while selecting a site for decentralized system for solid waste disposal, using Geographic Information System (GIS), the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) and the remote sensing method for Thiruvananthapuram corporation area. It is located on the west coast of India near the extreme south of the mainland. It lies on the shores of Killiyar and Karamana River. Being on the basin the waste managements must be regulated with the water body. The different criteria considered for waste disposal site selection are lithology, surface water, aquifer, groundwater, land use, contours, aspect, elevation, slope, and distance to road, distance from settlement are examined in relation to land fill site selection. Each criterion was identified and weighted by AHP score and mapped using GIS technique and suitable map is prepared by overlay analysis.

Keywords: waste disposal, solid waste management, Geographic Information System (GIS), Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP)

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10 Evaluation of Eco Cement as a Stabilizer of Clayey Sand

Authors: Jeeja Menon, M. S. Ravikumar


With the advent of green technology and the concept of zero energy buildings, there is an emerging trend in the utilization of indigenous materials like soil as a construction material. However, fine soils like clays and sand have undesirable properties and stabilization of these soils is essential before it is used to develop a building unit. Eco cement or Ground Granulated Blast Furnace Slag (GGBS), a waste byproduct formed during the manufacture of iron has cementitious properties and has the potential of replacing cement which is the most common stabilizer used for improving the geotechnical properties of soil. This paper highlights the salient observations obtained by the investigations into the effect of GGBS as a stabilizer for clayey sand. The index and engineering properties of the soil on the addition of different percentages (0%, 2%, 4%, 5% & 6% of the dry weight of the soil) of GGBS are tested to arrive at the optimum binder content. The criteria chosen for evaluation are the unconfined compressive strength values of different soil- binder composition. The test results indicate that there are significant strength improvements by the addition of GGBS in the soil, and the optimum GGBS content was determined as 5%. Moreover, utilizing waste binders for developing an ecofriendly, less energy induced building units as well as for stabilizing soil will also contribute to the solid waste management, which is the current environmental crisis of the world.

Keywords: eco cement, GGBS, index properties, stabilization, unconfined compressive strength

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9 A Dual Channel Optical Sensor for Norepinephrine via Situ Generated Silver Nanoparticles

Authors: Shalini Menon, K. Girish Kumar


Norepinephrine (NE) is one of the naturally occurring catecholamines which act both as a neurotransmitter and a hormone. Catecholamine levels are used for the diagnosis and regulation of phaeochromocytoma, a neuroendocrine tumor of the adrenal medulla. The development of simple, rapid and cost-effective sensors for NE still remains a great challenge. Herein, a dual-channel sensor has been developed for the determination of NE. A mixture of AgNO₃, NaOH, NH₃.H₂O and cetrimonium bromide in appropriate concentrations was taken as the working solution. To the thoroughly vortexed mixture, an appropriate volume of NE solution was added. After a particular time, the fluorescence and absorbance were measured. Fluorescence measurements were made by exciting at a wavelength of 400 nm. A dual-channel optical sensor has been developed for the colorimetric as well as the fluorimetric determination of NE. Metal enhanced fluorescence property of nanoparticles forms the basis of the fluorimetric detection of this assay, whereas the appearance of brown color in the presence of NE leads to colorimetric detection. Wide linear ranges and sub-micromolar detection limits were obtained using both the techniques. Moreover, the colorimetric approach was applied for the determination of NE in synthetic blood serum and the results obtained were compared with the classic high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method. Recoveries between 97% and 104% were obtained using the proposed method. Based on five replicate measurements, relative standard deviation (RSD) for NE determination in the examined synthetic blood serum was found to be 2.3%. This indicates the reliability of the proposed sensor for real sample analysis.

Keywords: norepinephrine, colorimetry, fluorescence, silver nanoparticles

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8 Clinical and Radiological Outcome in 300 Patients with Non-Aneurysmal Sah

Authors: Ranjith Menon, Abathar Aladi, Hans-Christean Nahser, Maneesh Bhojak, Sacha Nevin, Paul Eldridge


Background: Spontaneous subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH) accounts for approximately 5% of all strokes. Patients with spontaneous SAH (as shown by CT or lumbar puncture) undergo investigations to identify or exclude an underlying structural cause, typically cerebral aneurysm. However in 10 - 20% of cases, no structural cause is found. This includes more than one imaging modality (intracranial MRA, CTA, 4DCTA and/or DSA) and in some spinal MRI. Objective: To determine; 1) If an underlying structural or vascular cause can be identified in non-aneurysmal SAH patients by comparing different imaging modalities at presentation and at follow-up. 2) If MRI spine in patients with non-aneurysmal SAH reveals an underlying SAH cause. 3)The functional outcome at discharge. Results: We performed a retrospective analysis of all non-traumatic SAH patients admitted to the Walton centre from January 2009 to December 2015. There were 1457 patients with non-traumatic SAH admitted to the Walton centre of whom 21.8% (n=300) patients were diagnosed with non-aneurysmal SAH. Males were 65.6% and females were 43.3%. The presenting symptoms were sudden onset headache (93.6%), the focal neurological deficit (12%), loss of consciousness (10.6%) and others (6%). About 285 patients received 2 modalities of imaging (CTA & DSA), 192 received 3 modalities of imaging (CTA, MRA & DSA) and 137 received MRI spine (51/137 whole spine). The modified Rankin Score at discharge were: mRS 0 = 292 (97.33%), mRS 1-2 = 6, mRS 6 = 1 (cardiac arrest in IHD patient) and unknown in 1. Follow-up imaging at 3 to 6 months in 190 (63.3%) patients did not identify an underlying cause. Conclusion: This retrospective analysis concludes that non-aneurysmal SAH has a good functional outcome. A single imaging modality (CTA (4DCTA) or MRA or DSA) was adequate to exclude an underlying cause of SAH and a delayed imaging failed to identify a cause. Routinely performing MRI spine in this group of patients appears not to be necessary according to this evidence.

Keywords: stroke, non-aneurysmal subarachnoid haemorrhage, neuroimaging, modified rankin score

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7 Predicting Ecological Impacts of Sea-Level Change on Coastal Conservation Areas in India

Authors: Mohammad Zafar-ul Islam, Shaily Menon, Xingong Li, A. Townsend Peterson


In addition to the mounting empirical data on direct implications of climate change for natural and human systems, evidence is increasing for other, indirect climate change phenomena such as sea-level rise. Rising sea levels and associated marine intrusion into terrestrial environments are predicted to be among the most serious eventual consequences of climate change. The many complex and interacting factors affecting sea levels create considerable uncertainty in sea-level rise projections: conservative estimates are on the order of 0.5-1.0 m globally, while other estimates are much higher, approaching 6 m. Marine intrusion associated with 1– 6 m sea-level rise will impact species and habitats in coastal ecosystems severely. Examining areas most vulnerable to such impacts may allow design of appropriate adaptation and mitigation strategies. We present an overview of potential effects of 1 and 6 m sea level rise for coastal conservation areas in the Indian Subcontinent. In particular, we examine the projected magnitude of areal losses in relevant biogeographic zones, ecoregions, protected areas (PAs), and Important Bird Areas (IBAs). In addition, we provide a more detailed and quantitative analysis of likely effects of marine intrusion on 22 coastal PAs and IBAs that provide critical habitat for birds in the form of breeding areas, migratory stopover sites, and overwintering habitats. Several coastal PAs and IBAs are predicted to experience higher than 50% losses to marine intrusion. We explore consequences of such inundation levels on species and habitat in these areas.

Keywords: sea-level change, coastal inundation, marine intrusion, biogeographic zones, ecoregions, protected areas, important bird areas, adaptation, mitigation

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6 Computational Approaches to Study Lineage Plasticity in Human Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma

Authors: Almudena Espin Perez, Tyler Risom, Carl Pelz, Isabel English, Robert M. Angelo, Rosalie Sears, Andrew J. Gentles


Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is one of the most deadly malignancies. The role of the tumor microenvironment (TME) is gaining significant attention in cancer research. Despite ongoing efforts, the nature of the interactions between tumors, immune cells, and stromal cells remains poorly understood. The cell-intrinsic properties that govern cell lineage plasticity in PDAC and extrinsic influences of immune populations require technically challenging approaches due to the inherently heterogeneous nature of PDAC. Understanding the cell lineage plasticity of PDAC will improve the development of novel strategies that could be translated to the clinic. Members of the team have demonstrated that the acquisition of ductal to neuroendocrine lineage plasticity in PDAC confers therapeutic resistance and is a biomarker of poor outcomes in patients. Our approach combines computational methods for deconvolving bulk transcriptomic cancer data using CIBERSORTx and high-throughput single-cell imaging using Multiplexed Ion Beam Imaging (MIBI) to study lineage plasticity in PDAC and its relationship to the infiltrating immune system. The CIBERSORTx algorithm uses signature matrices from immune cells and stroma from sorted and single-cell data in order to 1) infer the fractions of different immune cell types and stromal cells in bulked gene expression data and 2) impute a representative transcriptome profile for each cell type. We studied a unique set of 300 genomically well-characterized primary PDAC samples with rich clinical annotation. We deconvolved the PDAC transcriptome profiles using CIBERSORTx, leveraging publicly available single-cell RNA-seq data from normal pancreatic tissue and PDAC to estimate cell type proportions in PDAC, and digitally reconstruct cell-specific transcriptional profiles from our study dataset. We built signature matrices and optimized by simulations and comparison to ground truth data. We identified cell-type-specific transcriptional programs that contribute to cancer cell lineage plasticity, especially in the ductal compartment. We also studied cell differentiation hierarchies using CytoTRACE and predict cell lineage trajectories for acinar and ductal cells that we believe are pinpointing relevant information on PDAC progression. Collaborators (Angelo lab, Stanford University) has led the development of the Multiplexed Ion Beam Imaging (MIBI) platform for spatial proteomics. We will use in the very near future MIBI from tissue microarray of 40 PDAC samples to understand the spatial relationship between cancer cell lineage plasticity and stromal cells focused on infiltrating immune cells, using the relevant markers of PDAC plasticity identified from the RNA-seq analysis.

Keywords: deconvolution, imaging, microenvironment, PDAC

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5 Data Analysis for Taxonomy Prediction and Annotation of 16S rRNA Gene Sequences from Metagenome Data

Authors: Suchithra V., Shreedhanya, Kavya Menon, Vidya Niranjan


Skin metagenomics has a wide range of applications with direct relevance to the health of the organism. It gives us insight to the diverse community of microorganisms (the microbiome) harbored on the skin. In the recent years, it has become increasingly apparent that the interaction between skin microbiome and the human body plays a prominent role in immune system development, cancer development, disease pathology, and many other biological implications. Next Generation Sequencing has led to faster and better understanding of environmental organisms and their mutual interactions. This project is studying the human skin microbiome of different individuals having varied skin conditions. Bacterial 16S rRNA data of skin microbiome is downloaded from SRA toolkit provided by NCBI to perform metagenomics analysis. Twelve samples are selected with two controls, and 3 different categories, i.e., sex (male/female), skin type (moist/intermittently moist/sebaceous) and occlusion (occluded/intermittently occluded/exposed). Quality of the data is increased using Cutadapt, and its analysis is done using FastQC. USearch, a tool used to analyze an NGS data, provides a suitable platform to obtain taxonomy classification and abundance of bacteria from the metagenome data. The statistical tool used for analyzing the USearch result is METAGENassist. The results revealed that the top three abundant organisms found were: Prevotella, Corynebacterium, and Anaerococcus. Prevotella is known to be an infectious bacterium found on wound, tooth cavity, etc. Corynebacterium and Anaerococcus are opportunist bacteria responsible for skin odor. This result infers that Prevotella thrives easily in sebaceous skin conditions. Therefore it is better to undergo intermittently occluded treatment such as applying ointments, creams, etc. to treat wound for sebaceous skin type. Exposing the wound should be avoided as it leads to an increase in Prevotella abundance. Moist skin type individuals can opt for occluded or intermittently occluded treatment as they have shown to decrease the abundance of bacteria during treatment.

Keywords: bacterial 16S rRNA , next generation sequencing, skin metagenomics, skin microbiome, taxonomy

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4 Is the Addition of Computed Tomography with Angiography Superior to a Non-Contrast Neuroimaging Only Strategy for Patients with Suspected Stroke or Transient Ischemic Attack Presenting to the Emergency Department?

Authors: Alisha M. Ebrahim, Bijoy K. Menon, Eddy Lang, Shelagh B. Coutts, Katie Lin


Introduction: Frontline emergency physicians require clear and evidence-based approaches to guide neuroimaging investigations for patients presenting with suspected acute stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA). Various forms of computed tomography (CT) are currently available for initial investigation, including non-contrast CT (NCCT), CT angiography head and neck (CTA), and CT perfusion (CTP). However, there is uncertainty around optimal imaging choice for cost-effectiveness, particularly for minor or resolved neurological symptoms. In addition to the cost of CTA and CTP testing, there is also a concern for increased incidental findings, which may contribute to the burden of overdiagnosis. Methods: In this cross-sectional observational study, analysis was conducted on 586 anonymized triage and diagnostic imaging (DI) reports for neuroimaging orders completed on patients presenting to adult emergency departments (EDs) with a suspected stroke or TIA from January-December 2019. The primary outcome of interest is the diagnostic yield of NCCT+CTA compared to NCCT alone for patients presenting to urban academic EDs with Canadian Emergency Department Information System (CEDIS) complaints of “symptoms of stroke” (specifically acute stroke and TIA indications). DI reports were coded into 4 pre-specified categories (endorsed by a panel of stroke experts): no abnormalities, clinically significant findings (requiring immediate or follow-up clinical action), incidental findings (not meeting prespecified criteria for clinical significance), and both significant and incidental findings. Standard descriptive statistics were performed. A two-sided p-value <0.05 was considered significant. Results: 75% of patients received NCCT+CTA imaging, 21% received NCCT alone, and 4% received NCCT+CTA+CTP. The diagnostic yield of NCCT+CTA imaging for prespecified clinically significant findings was 24%, compared to only 9% in those who received NCCT alone. The proportion of incidental findings was 30% in the NCCT only group and 32% in the NCCT+CTA group. CTP did not significantly increase the yield of significant or incidental findings. Conclusion: In this cohort of patients presenting with suspected stroke or TIA, an NCCT+CTA neuroimaging strategy had a higher diagnostic yield for clinically significant findings than NCCT alone without significantly increasing the number of incidental findings identified.

Keywords: stroke, diagnostic yield, neuroimaging, emergency department, CT

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3 Study of the Combinatorial Impact of Substrate Properties on Mesenchymal Stem Cell Migration Using Microfluidics

Authors: Nishanth Venugopal Menon, Chuah Yon Jin, Samantha Phey, Wu Yingnan, Zhang Ying, Vincent Chan, Kang Yuejun


Cell Migration is a vital phenomenon that the cells undergo in various physiological processes like wound healing, disease progression, embryogenesis, etc. Cell migration depends primarily on the chemical and physical cues available in the cellular environment. The chemical cue involves the chemokines secreted and gradients generated in the environment while physical cues indicate the impact of matrix properties like nanotopography and stiffness on the cells. Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) have been shown to have a role wound healing in vivo and its migration to the site of the wound has been shown to have a therapeutic effect. In the field of stem cell based tissue regeneration of bones and cartilage, one approach has been to introduce scaffold laden with MSCs into the site of injury to enable tissue regeneration. In this work, we have studied the combinatorial impact of the substrate physical properties on MSC migration. A microfluidic in vitro model was created to perform the migration studies. The microfluidic model used is a three compartment device consisting of two cell seeding compartments and one migration compartment. Four different PDMS substrates with varying substrate roughness, stiffness and hydrophobicity were created. Its surface roughness and stiffness was measured using Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) while its hydrphobicity was measured from the water contact angle using an optical tensiometer. These PDMS substrates are sealed to the microfluidic chip following which the MSCs are seeded and the cell migration is studied over the period of a week. Cell migration was quantified using fluorescence imaging of the cytoskeleton (F-actin) to find out the area covered by the cells inside the migration compartment. The impact of adhesion proteins on cell migration was also quantified using a real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT PCR). These results suggested that the optimal substrate for cell migration would be one with an intermediate level of roughness, stiffness and hydrophobicity. A higher or lower value of these properties affected cell migration negatively. These observations have helped us in understanding that different substrate properties need to be considered in tandem, especially while designing scaffolds for tissue regeneration as cell migration is normally impacted by the combinatorial impact of the matrix. These observations may lead us to scaffold optimization in future tissue regeneration applications.

Keywords: cell migration, microfluidics, in vitro model, stem cell migration, scaffold, substrate properties

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2 Challenging Clinical Scenario of Blood Stream Candida Infections – An Indian Experience

Authors: P. Uma Devi, S. Sujith, K. Rahul, T. S. Dipu, V. Anil Kumar , Vidya Menon


Introduction: Candida is an important cause of bloodstream infections (BSIs), causing significant mortality and morbidity. The epidemiology of Candida infection is also changing, mainly in relation to the number of episodes caused by species Candida non-albicans. However, in India, the true burden of candidemia is not clear. Thus, this study was conducted to evaluate the clinical characteristics, species distribution, antifungal susceptibility and outcome of candidemia at our hospital. Methodology: Between January 2012 and April 2014, adult patients with at least one positive blood culture for Candida species were identified through the microbiology laboratory database (for each patient only the first episode of candidemia was recorded). Patient data was collected by retrospective chart review of clinical characteristics including demographic data, risk factors; species distribution, resistance to antifungals and survival. Results: A total of 165 episodes of Candida BSI were identified, with 115 episodes occurring in adult patients. Most of the episodes occurred in males (69.6%). Nearly 82.6% patients were between 41 to 80 years and majority of the patients were in the intensive care unit (65.2%) at the time of diagnosis. On admission, 26.1% and 18.3% patients had pneumonia and urinary tract infection, respectively. Majority of the candidemia episodes were found in the general medicine department (23.5%) followed by gastrointestinal surgery (13.9%) and medical oncology & haematology (13%). Risk factors identified were prior hospitalization within one year (83.5%), antibiotic therapy within the last one month (64.3%), indwelling urinary catheter (63.5%), central venous catheter use (59.1%), diabetes mellitus (53%), severe sepsis (45.2%), mechanical ventilation (43.5%) and surgery (36.5%). C. tropicalis (30.4%) was the leading cause of infection followed by C. parapsilosis (28.7%) and C. albicans (13%). Other non-albicans species isolated included C. haemulonii (7.8%), C. glabrata (7%), C. famata (4.3%) and C. krusei (1.7%). Antifungal susceptibility to fluconazole was 87.9% (C. parapsilosis), 100% (C. tropicalis) and 93.3% (C. albicans). Mortality was noted in 51 patients (44.3%). Early mortality (within 7 days) was noted in 32 patients while late mortality (between 7 and 30 days) was noted in 19 patients. Conclusion: In recent years, candidemia has been flourishing in critically ill patients. Comparison of data from our own hospital from 2005 shows a doubling of the incidence. Rapid changes in the rate of infection, potential risk factors, and emergence of non-albicans Candida demand continued surveillance of this serious BSI. High index of suspicion and sensitive diagnostics are essential to improve outcomes in resource limited settings with emergence of non-albicans Candida.

Keywords: antifungal susceptibility, candida albicans, candidemia, non-albicans candida

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1 Furnishing Ancillary Alternatives for High Speed Corridors and Pedestrian Crossing: Elevated Cycle Track, an Expedient to Urban Space Prototype in New Delhi

Authors: Suneet Jagdev, Hrishabh Amrodia, Siddharth Menon, Abhishek Singh, Mansi Shivhare


Delhi, the National Capital, has undergone a surge in development rate, consequently engendering an unprecedented increase in population. Over the years the city has transformed into a car-centric infrastructure with high-speed corridors, flyovers and fast lanes. A considerable section of the population is hankering to rehabilitate to the good old cycling days, in order to contribute towards a green environment as well as to maintain their physical well-being. Furthermore, an extant section of Delhi’s population relies on cycles as their primary means of commuting in the city. Delhi has the highest number of cyclists and second highest number of pedestrians in the country. However, the tumultuous problems of unregulated traffic, inadequate space on roads, adverse weather conditions stifle them to opt for cycling. Lately, the city has been facing a conglomeration of problems such as haphazard traffic movement, clogged roads, congestion, pollution, accidents, safety issues, etc. In 1957, Delhi’s cyclists accounted for 36 per cent of trips which dropped down to a mere 4 per cent in 2008. The declining rate is due to unsafe roads and lack of proper cycle lanes. Now as the 10 percent of the city has cycle tracks. There is also a lack of public recreational activities in the city. These conundrums incite the need of a covered elevated cycling bridge track to facilitate the safe and smooth cycle commutation in the city which would also serve the purpose of an alternate urban public space over the cycle bridge reducing the cost as well as the space requirement for the same, developing a user–friendly transportation and public interaction system for urban areas in the city. Based on the archival research methodologies, the following research draws information and extracts records from the data accounts of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. as well as the Centre for Science and Environment, India. This research will predominantly focus on developing a prototype design for high speed elevated bicycle lanes based on different road typologies, which can be replicated with minor variations in similar situations, all across the major cities of our country including the proposed smart cities. Furthermore, how these cycling lanes could be utilized for the place making process accommodating cycle parking and renting spaces, public recreational spaces, food courts as well as convenient shopping facilities with appropriate optimization. How to preserve and increase the share of smooth and safe cycling commute cycling for the routine transportation of the urban community of the polluted capital which has been on a steady decline over the past few decades.

Keywords: bicycle track, prototype, road safety, urban spaces

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