Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 25

Search results for: Tefera Worku Mekonnen

25 Poly(Amidoamine) Dendrimer-Cisplatin Nanocomplex Mixed with Multifunctional Ovalbumin Coated Iron Oxide Nanoparticles for Immuno-Chemotherapeutics with M1 Polarization of Macrophages

Authors: Tefera Worku Mekonnen, Hiseh Chih Tsai


Enhancement of drug efficacy is essential in cancer treatment. The immune stimulator ovalbumin (Ova)-coated citric acid (AC-)-stabilized iron oxide nanoparticles (AC-IO-Ova NPs) and enhanced permeability and retention (EPR) based tumor targeted 4.5 (4.5G) poly(amidoamine) dendrimer-cisplatin nanocomplex (4.5GDP-Cis-pt NC) were used for enhanced anticancer efficiency. The formations of 4.5GDP-Cis-pt NC, AC-IO, and AC-IO-Ova NPs have been examined by FTIR, X-ray diffraction, Raman, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The conjugation of cisplatin (Cis-pt) with 4.5GDP was confirmed using carbon NMR. The tumor-specific 4.5GDP-Cis-pt NC provided ~45% and 28% cumulative cisplatin release in 72 h at pH 6.5 and 7.4, respectively. A significant immune response with high TNF-α and IL-6 cytokine secretion was confirmed when the co-incubation of AC-IO-Ova with RAW 264.7 or HaCaT cells. AC-IO-Ova NP was biocompatible in different cell lines, even at a high concentration (200 µg mL−1). In contrast, AC-IO-Ova NPs mixed with 4.5GDP-Cis-pt NC (Cis-pt at 15 µg mL−1) significantly increased the cytotoxicity against the cancer cells, which is dose-dependent on the concentration of AC-IO-Ova NPs. The increased anticancer effects may be attributed to the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Moreover, the efficiency of anticancer cells may be further assisted by induction of an innate immune response via M1 macrophage polarization due to the presence of AC-IO-Ova NPs. We provide a better synergestic chemoimmunotherapeutic strategy to enhance the efficiency of anticancer of cisplatin via chemotherapeutic agent 4.5GDP-Cis-pt NC and induction of proinflammatory cytokines to stimulate innate immunity through AC-IO-Ova NPs against tumors.

Keywords: cisplatin-release, iron oxide, ovalbumin, poly(amidoamine) dendrimer

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24 Demand for Index Based Micro-Insurance (IBMI) in Ethiopia

Authors: Ashenafi Sileshi Etefa, Bezawit Worku Yenealem


Micro-insurance is a relatively new concept that is just being introduced in Ethiopia. For an agrarian economy dominated by small holder farming and vulnerable to natural disasters, mainly drought, the need for an Index-Based Micro Insurance (IBMI) is crucial. Since IBMI solves moral hazard, adverse selection, and access issues to poor clients, it is preferable over traditional insurance products. IBMI is being piloted in drought prone areas of Ethiopia with the aim of learning and expanding the service across the country. This article analyses the demand of IBMI and the barriers to demand and finds that the demand for IBMI has so far been constrained by lack of awareness, trust issues, costliness, and the level of basis risk; and recommends reducing the basis risk and increasing the role of government and farmer cooperatives.

Keywords: agriculture, index based micro-insurance (IBMI), drought, micro-finance institution (MFI)

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23 Graphen-Based Nanocomposites for Glucose and Ethanol Enzymatic Biosensor Fabrication

Authors: Tesfaye Alamirew, Delele Worku, Solomon W. Fanta, Nigus Gabbiye


Recently graphen based nanocomposites are become an emerging research areas for fabrication of enzymatic biosensors due to their property of large surface area, conductivity and biocompatibility. This review summarizes recent research reports of graphen based nanocomposites for the fabrication of glucose and ethanol enzymatic biosensors. The newly fabricated enzyme free microwave treated nitrogen doped graphen (MN-d-GR) had provided highest sensitivity towards glucose and GCE/rGO/AuNPs/ADH composite had provided far highest sensitivity towards ethanol compared to other reported graphen based nanocomposites. The MWCNT/GO/GOx and GCE/ErGO/PTH/ADH nanocomposites had also enhanced wide linear range for glucose and ethanol detection respectively. Generally, graphen based nanocomposite enzymatic biosensors had fast direct electron transfer rate, highest sensitivity and wide linear detection ranges during glucose and ethanol sensing.

Keywords: glucose, ethanol, enzymatic biosensor, graphen, nanocomposite

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22 Controlled Synthesis of CdSe Quantum Dots via Microwave-Enhanced Process: A Green Approach for Mass Production

Authors: Delele Worku Ayele, Bing-Joe Hwang


A method that does not employ hot injection techniques has been developed for the size-tunable synthesis of high-quality CdSe quantum dots (QDs) with a zinc blende structure. In this environmentally benign synthetic route, which uses relatively less toxic precursors, solvents, and capping ligands, CdSe QDs that absorb visible light are obtained. The size of the as-prepared CdSe QDs and, thus, their optical properties can be manipulated by changing the microwave reaction conditions. The QDs are characterized by XRD, TEM, UV-vis, FTIR, time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy, and fluorescence spectrophotometry. In this approach, the reaction is conducted in open air and at a much lower temperature than in hot injection techniques. The use of microwaves in this process allows for a highly reproducible and effective synthesis protocol that is fully adaptable for mass production and can be easily employed to synthesize a variety of semiconductor QDs with the desired properties. The possible application of the as-prepared CdSe QDs has been also assessed using deposition on TiO2 films.

Keywords: average life time, CdSe QDs, microwave (MW), mass production oleic acid, Na2SeSO3

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21 Rapid Microwave-Enhanced Process for Synthesis of CdSe Quantum Dots for Large Scale Production and Manipulation of Optical Properties

Authors: Delele Worku Ayele, Bing-Joe Hwang


A method that does not employ hot injection techniques has been developed for the size-tunable synthesis of high-quality CdSe quantum dots (QDs) with a zinc blende structure. In this environmentally benign synthetic route, which uses relatively less toxic precursors, solvents, and capping ligands, CdSe QDs that absorb visible light are obtained. The size of the as-prepared CdSe QDs and, thus, their optical properties can be manipulated by changing the microwave reaction conditions. The QDs are characterized by XRD, TEM, UV-vis, FTIR, time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy, and fluorescence spectrophotometry. In this approach, the reaction is conducted in open air and at a much lower temperature than in hot injection techniques. The use of microwaves in this process allows for a highly reproducible and effective synthesis protocol that is fully adaptable for mass production and can be easily employed to synthesize a variety of semiconductor QDs with the desired properties. The possible application of the as-prepared CdSe QDs has been also assessed using deposition on TiO2 films.

Keywords: CdSe QDs, Na2SeSO3, microwave (MW), oleic acid, mass production, average life time

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20 Repeated Reuse of Insulin Injection Syringes and Incidence of Bacterial Contamination among Diabetic Patients in Jimma University Specialized Hospital, Jimma, Ethiopia

Authors: Muluneh Ademe, Zeleke Mekonnen


Objective: to determine the level of bacterial contamination of reused insulin syringes among diabetic patients. Method: A facility based cross-sectional study was conducted among diabetic patients. Data on socio-demographic variables, history of injection syringe reuse, and frequency of reuse of syringes were collected using predesigned questionnaire. Finally, the samples from the syringes were cultured according to standard microbiological techniques. Result: Eighteen diabetic patients at Jimma University Hospital participated. A total of 83.3% of participants reused a single injection syringe for >30 consecutive injections, while 16.7% reused for >30 injections. Our results showed 22.2% of syringes were contaminated with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aures. Conclusion: We conclude reuse of syringe is associated with microbial contamination. The findings that 4/18 syringes being contaminated with bacteria is an alarming situation. A mechanism should be designed for patients to get injection syringes with affordable price. If reusing is not avoidable, reducing number of injections per a single syringe and avoiding needle touching with hand or other non-sterile material may be an alternative to reduce the risk of contamination.

Keywords: diabetes mellitus, Ethiopia, subcutaneous insulin injection, syringe reuse

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19 Inclusive Business and Its Contribution to Farmers Wellbeing in Arsi Ethiopia: Empirical Evidence

Authors: Senait G. Worku, Ellen Mangnus


Inclusive business models which integrates low-income people with companies value chain in a commercially viable way has gained momentum for the perceived potential to contribute to poverty alleviation and food security in developing countries. This article investigates the impact of Community Revenue Enhancement through Technology Extension (CREATE) project of Heineken brewery on smallholder farmers’ wellbeing in Arsi zone Oromia regional state of Ethiopia. CREATE is a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) between Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands and Heineken N.V. which source malt barely from smallholder farmers in three zones of Oromia. The study assessed the impact of CREATE on malt barley productivity, food security and new asset purchase in Arsi zone by comparing households that participate in the project with non-participating households using propensity score matching method. The finding indicated that households that participated in the CREATE project had higher malt barley productivity and purchased more new assets than non-participating households. However, there is no significant difference on food security status of participating and non-participating households indicating that the project has a profound impact on asset accumulation than on food security improvement.

Keywords: inclusive business, malt barley, propensity score matching, wellbeing

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18 A Real-Time Moving Object Detection and Tracking Scheme and Its Implementation for Video Surveillance System

Authors: Mulugeta K. Tefera, Xiaolong Yang, Jian Liu


Detection and tracking of moving objects are very important in many application contexts such as detection and recognition of people, visual surveillance and automatic generation of video effect and so on. However, the task of detecting a real shape of an object in motion becomes tricky due to various challenges like dynamic scene changes, presence of shadow, and illumination variations due to light switch. For such systems, once the moving object is detected, tracking is also a crucial step for those applications that used in military defense, video surveillance, human computer interaction, and medical diagnostics as well as in commercial fields such as video games. In this paper, an object presents in dynamic background is detected using adaptive mixture of Gaussian based analysis of the video sequences. Then the detected moving object is tracked using the region based moving object tracking and inter-frame differential mechanisms to address the partial overlapping and occlusion problems. Firstly, the detection algorithm effectively detects and extracts the moving object target by enhancing and post processing morphological operations. Secondly, the extracted object uses region based moving object tracking and inter-frame difference to improve the tracking speed of real-time moving objects in different video frames. Finally, the plotting method was applied to detect the moving objects effectively and describes the object’s motion being tracked. The experiment has been performed on image sequences acquired both indoor and outdoor environments and one stationary and web camera has been used.

Keywords: background modeling, Gaussian mixture model, inter-frame difference, object detection and tracking, video surveillance

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17 Concurrent Micronutrient Deficiencies in Lactating Mothers and Their Infants 6-23 Months of Age in Two Agro-Ecological Zones of Rural Ethiopia

Authors: Kedir Teji Roba, Thomas P. O’Connor, Tefera Belachew, Nora M. O’Brien


Micronutrient deficiencies of ferritin, zinc and haemoglobin are prevalent among the mothers and their infants in developing countries. But little attention has been given to these vulnerable groups. No study has been done on co-existence of the deficiencies among lactating mothers and their breast feeding infants in two different agro-ecological zones of rural Ethiopia. Methods: Data were collected from 162 lactating mothers and their breast feeding infants (aged 6-23 months) who were living in two different agro-ecological zones. The data were collected via a structured interview, anthropometric measurements, and blood test for Zinc, ferritin and anaemia. Correlation and Chi square test were used to determine the association among nutritional status and agro ecological zones. Results: Iron deficiency was found in 44.4% of the infants and 19.8% of the mothers. Zinc deficiency was found in 72.2% of the infants and 67.3% of the mothers. Of the study subject 52.5% of the infants and 19.1% of the mothers were anaemic, and 29.6% of the infants and 10.5% of the mothers had iron deficiency anaemia. Among the mothers with iron deficiency, 81.2% and 56.2% of their children were deficient in zinc and iron respectively. Similarly, among the zinc deficient mothers, 75.2% and 45.3% of their children were deficient in zinc and iron. There was a strong correlation between the micronutrient status of the mothers and the infants on status of ferritin, zinc and anaemia (P < 0.001). There is also statistically significant association between micronutrient deficiency and agro-ecological zones among the mothers (p < 0.001) but not with their infants. Deficiency in one, two, or three, micronutrients was observed in 48.1%, 16.7% and 9.9% of the mothers and 35.8%, 29.0%, and 23.5%, of their infants respectively. Conclusion: This study shows that iron and zinc deficiencies are the prevalent micronutrient deficiencies among the lactating mothers and their infants, with variation of the magnitude across the agro-ecological zones. This finding calls for a need to design effective preventive public health nutrition programs to address both the mothers’ and their infants’ needs.

Keywords: ferritin/iron, zinc, anaemia, agroecology, malnutrition

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16 Non-Adherence to Antidepressant Treatment and Its Predictors among Outpatients with Depressive Disorders

Authors: Selam Mulugeta, Barkot Milkias, Mesfin Araya, Abel Worku, Eyasu Mulugeta


In Ethiopia, there is inadequate information on non-adherence to antidepressant treatment in patients with depressive disorders. Having awareness of the pattern of adherence is important in future prognosis, quality of life, and functionality in these patients. This hospital-based cross-sectional quantitative study was done on a sample of 216 consecutive outpatients with depressive disorders. Data were collected using questionnaires through in-person and phone call interviews. The 8-item Morisky scale was used to assess the pattern of medication adherence. Other specially developed tools were used to obtain sociodemographic and clinical information from electronic medical records and patient interviews. Data were analyzed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences Version - 25. Univariate and multivariable analyses were carried out to assess factors associated with non-adherence. 90% of the participants had a primary diagnosis of major depressive disorder. Based on the 8-item Morisky Medication Adherence Scale, the prevalence of non-adherence was found to be 84.7%. Living distance between 11 to 50 km from the hospital (AOR= 11, 95% CI (29,46.6)), post-secondary level of education (AOR= 8.3, 95% CI (1, 64.4)) and taking multiple medications (AOR= 6.1, 95% CI (1, 34.9)) were found to have significantly increased odds of non-adherence. Non-adherence was significantly associated with factors such as increased living distance from the hospital, relatively higher educational level, and polypharmacy. Proper and patient-centered psychoeducation, addressing the communication gap between patients and doctors, adherence to prescribing guidelines, avoiding polypharmacy unless indicated & working on accessibility of treatment is essential to decrease non-adherence.

Keywords: depressive disorders, Ethiopia, medication adherence, Addis Ababa

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15 Food Insecurity and Mental Health among Adolescents in Southwest Ethiopia: Structural Equation Modeling Analysis

Authors: Mulusew G. Jebena, David Lindstrom, Tefera Belachew, Craig Hadley, Carl Lachat, Patrick Kolsteren


Background: The biological and psychosocial consequence of food insecurity on physical health and nutritional status has been reported. But, its effect on mental health during adolescence remains unexplored. Thus, the main aim of this analysis is to examine the mechanism by which food insecurity is linked to mental health among adolescents living in Jimma, Southwest Ethiopia. Methods: We used data from third round observation of Jimma Longitudinal Family and Youth Survey (JLFSY). A total of 1,521 adolescents included for the main analysis. Food insecurity was measured using 5-items scale and The Self Reporting Questionnaire (SRQ-20) was used to measure mental distress. Structural equation modeling analysis was done using maximum likelihood estimation method. Model diagnostics test was reported. All p values were two tailed and P value ≤ 0.05 was used to determine statistical significance. Results: The prevalence of mental distress was 20.8%, 95% CI: (18.8, 22.9). After adjusted for covariates, the final model depicts food insecurity was associated with adolescent mental distress (β=.324). This analysis showed 94.1% of the effect of food insecurity on mental distress is direct. By contrast, 5.9% of the food insecurity effect is mediated by physical health. In addition, Self-rated health (β=.356), socioeconomic status (β=-.078) parental educational (β= .170), living in urban (β= .193) and female headed household (β=.205) were associated with adolescent mental distress. Conclusions: This finding highlights the direct effect of food insecurity on adolescent mental distress. Therefore, any intervention aimed to improve mental distress of adolescents should consider strategies to improve access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food. Beside this, prevention of underlying factors such as psychosomatic health illness and improving socio economic status is also very critical. Furthermore longitudinal relationship of the long term effect of food insecurity on mental health should be investigated.

Keywords: adolescent, Ethiopia, food insecurity, mental health

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14 Determinants of Cessation of Exclusive Breastfeeding in Ankesha Guagusa Woreda, Awi Zone, Northwest Ethiopia: A Cross-Sectional Study

Authors: Tebikew Yeneabat, Tefera Belachew, Muluneh Haile


Background: Exclusive breast-feeding (EBF) is the practice of feeding only breast milk (including expressed breast milk) during the first six months and no other liquids and solid foods except medications. The time to cessation of exclusive breast-feeding, however, is different in different countries depending on different factors. Studies showed the risk of diarrhea morbidity and mortality is higher among none exclusive breast-feeding infants, common during starting other foods. However, there is no study that evaluated the time to cessation of exclusive breast-feeding in the study area. The aim of this study was to show time to cessation of EBF and its predictors among mothers of index infants less than twelve months old. Methods: We conducted a community-based cross-sectional study from February 13 to March 3, 2012 using both quantitative and qualitative methods. This study included a total of 592 mothers of index infant using multi-stage sampling method. Data were collected by using interviewer administered structured questionnaire. Bivariate and multivariate Cox regression analyses were performed. Results: Cessation of exclusive breast-feeding occurred in 392 (69.63%) cases. Among these, 224 (57.1%) happened before six months, while 145 (37.0%) and 23 (5.9%) occurred at six months and after six months of age of the index infant respectively. The median time for infants to stay on exclusive breast-feeding was 6.36 months in rural and 5.13 months in urban, and this difference was statistically significant on a Log rank (Cox-mantel) test. Maternal and paternal occupation, place of residence, postnatal counseling on exclusive breast-feeding, mode of delivery, and birth order of the index infant were significant predictors of cessation of exclusive breast-feeding. Conclusion: Providing postnatal care counseling on EBF, routine follow-up and support of those mothers having infants stressing for working mothers can bring about implementation of national strategy on infant and young child feeding.

Keywords: exclusive breastfeeding, cessation, median duration, Ankesha Guagusa Woreda

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13 Drug-related Problems and Associated Factors among Adult Psychiatric Inpatients in Northwest Ethiopia: Multicenter Cross-Sectional Study

Authors: Ephrem Mebratu Dagnew, Mohammed Biset Ayalew, Gizework Alemnew Mekonnen, Alehegn Bishaw Geremew, Ousman Abubeker Abdela


Objective: To assess the prevalence of drug-related problems and associated factors among adult psychiatric inpatients. Method: Hospital-based multicenter cross-sectional observational study was conducted from April to July 2021 at five randomly selected hospitals in North-west Ethiopia. A total of 325 consecutively sampled patients participated in the study. Clinical pharmacists assessed the DRPs based on clinical judgment supported by updated evidence-based diseases guidelines. A Medscape drug-interactions checker was used to check drug-drug interactions. The results were summarized using descriptive statistics, including frequency, mean, and standard deviation. Odds ratio (OR) with 95% confidence interval were also computed for each variable for the corresponding P-value. The value of P ≤ 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Result : From the total of 325 study participants, more than half of them (52.9%) were females and the mean age ± (standard deviation) was 30.8±11.3 years. At least one drug-related problem was recorded from 60.9%, 95% CI (55.7-65.8) of study participants with a mean of 0.6±0.49 per patient. Need additional drug therapy was the most common DRP (22.8%), followed by non-adherence to medicine (20.6%) and adverse drug reactions (11%), respectively. Factors independently associated with drug-related problems were rural residence [AOR=1.96,95%CI:1.01-2.84, P-value=0.046], self-employed [AOR=6.0 ,95% CI: 1.0-36.9, P-value=0.035] and alcohol drinkers [AOR=6.40,95%CI:1.12-37.5, p-value=0.034]. Conclusion: The prevalence of drug-related problems among adult psychiatric patients admitted to psychiatric wards was high. Healthcare providers give more attention to tackling these problems. Being a rural residence, self-employed, and Alcohol drinkers were associated with drug-related problems.

Keywords: psychiatric patients, drug-relatedproblems, multicenter, Ethiopia

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12 Assessment of the Effects of Water Harvesting Technology on Downstream Water Availability Using SWAT Model

Authors: Ayalkibet Mekonnen, Adane Abebe


In hydrological cycle there are many water-related human interventions that modify the natural systems. Rainwater harvesting is one such intervention that involves harnessing of water in the upstream. Water harvesting used in upstream prevents water runoff on downstream mainly disturbance on biodiversity and ecosystems. The main objectives of the study are to assess the effects of water harvesting technologies on downstream water availability in the Woreda. To address the above problem, SWAT model, cost-benefit ratio and optimal control approach was used to analyse the hydrological and socioeconomic impact and tradeoffs on water availability of the community, respectively. The downstream impacts of increasing water consumption in the upstream rain-fed areas of the Bilate and Shala Catchment are simulated using the semi-distributed SWAT model. The two land use scenarios tested at sub basin levels (1) conventional land use represents the current land use practice (Agri-CON) and (2) in-field rainwater harvesting (IRWH), improving soil water availability through rainwater harvesting land use scenario. The simulated water balance results showed that the highest peak mean monthly direct flow obtained from Agri-CON land use (127.1 m3/ha), followed by Agri-IRWH land use (11.5 mm) and LULC 2005 (90.1 m3/ha). The Agri-IRWH scenario reduced direct flow by 10% compared to Agri-CON and more groundwater flow contributed by Agri-IRWH (190 m3/ha) than Agri-CON (125 m3/ha). The overall result suggests that the water yield of the Woreda may not be negatively affected by the Agri-IRWH land use scenario. The technology in the Woreda benefited positively having an average benefit cost ratio of 4.2. Water harvesting for domestic use was not optimal that the value of the water per demand harvested was less than the amount of water needed. Storage tanks, series of check dams, gravel filled dams are an alternative solutions for water harvesting.

Keywords: water harvesting, SWAT model, land use scenario, Agri-CON, Agri-IRWH, trade off, benefit cost ratio

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11 Production and Application of Organic Waste Compost for Urban Agriculture in Emerging Cities

Authors: Alemayehu Agizew Woldeamanuel, Mekonnen Maschal Tarekegn, Raj Mohan Balakrishina


Composting is one of the conventional techniques adopted for organic waste management, but the practice is very limited in emerging cities despite the most of the waste generated is organic. This paper aims to examine the viability of composting for organic waste management in the emerging city of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, by addressing the composting practice, quality of compost, and application of compost in urban agriculture. The study collects data using compost laboratory testing and urban farm households’ survey and uses descriptive analysis on the state of compost production and application, physicochemical analysis of the compost samples, and regression analysis on the urban farmer’s willingness to pay for compost. The findings of the study indicated that there is composting practice at a small scale, most of the producers use unsorted feedstock materials, aerobic composting is dominantly used, and the maturation period ranged from four to ten weeks. The carbon content of the compost ranges from 30.8 to 277.1 due to the type of feedstock applied, and this surpasses the ideal proportions for C:N ratio. The total nitrogen, pH, organic matter, and moisture content are relatively optimal. The levels of heavy metals measured for Mn, Cu, Pb, Cd and Cr⁶⁺ in the compost samples are also insignificant. In the urban agriculture sector, chemical fertilizer is the dominant type of soil input in crop productions but vegetable producers use a combination of both fertilizer and other organic inputs, including compost. The willingness to pay for compost depends on income, household size, gender, type of soil inputs, monitoring soil fertility, the main product of the farm, farming method and farm ownership. Finally, this study recommends the need for collaboration among stakeholders’ along the value chain of waste, awareness creation on the benefits of composting and addressing challenges faced by both compost producers and users.

Keywords: composting, emerging city, organic waste management, urban agriculture

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10 Evaluation of Sugarcane Straw Derived Biochar for the Remediation of Chromium and Nickel Contaminated Soil

Authors: Selam M. Tefera


Soil constitutes a crucial component of rural and urban environments. This fact is making role of heavy and trace elements in the soil system an issue of global concern. Heavy metals constitute an ill-defined group of inorganic chemical hazards, whose main source is anthropogenic activities mainly related to fabrications. This accumulation of heavy metals soils can prove toxic to the environment. The application of biochar to soil is one way of immobilizing these contaminants through sorption by exploiting the high surface area of this material among its other essential properties. This research examined the ability of sugar cane straw, an organic waste material from sugar farm, derived biochar and ash to remediate soil contaminated with heavy metals mainly Chromium and Zinc from the effluent of electroplating industry. Biochar was produced by varying the temperature from 300 °C to 500 °C and ash at 700 °C. The highest yield (50%) was obtained at the lowest temperature (300 °C). The proximate analysis showed ash content of 42.8%, ultimate analysis with carbon content of 67.18%, the Hydrogen to Carbon ratio of 0.54 and the results from FTIR analysis disclosed the organic nature of biochar. Methylene blue absorption indicated its fine surface area and pore structure, which increases with severity of temperature. Biochar was mixed with soil with at a ration varying from 4% w/w to 10% w/w of soil, and the response variables were determined at a time interval of 150 days, 180 days, and 210 days. As for ash (10% w/w), the characterization was performed at incubation time of 210 days. The results of pH indicated that biochar (9.24) had a notable liming capacity of acidic soil (4.8) by increasing it to 6.89 whereas ash increased it to 7.5. The immobilization capacity of biochar was found to effected mostly by the highest production temperature (500 °C), which was 75.5% for chromium and 80.5% for nickel. In addition, ash was shown to possess an outstanding immobilization capacity of 95.5% and 90.5% for Chromium and Nickel, respectively. All in all, the results from these methods showed that biochar produced from this specific biomass possesses the typical functional groups that enable it to store carbon, the appropriate pH that could remediate acidic soil, a fine amount of macro and micro nutrients that would aid plant growth.

Keywords: biochar, biomass, heavy metal immobalization, soil remediation

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9 Risk Factors Associated with Dengue Fever Outbreak in Diredawa Administration City, Ethiopia, October 2015: A Case Control Study

Authors: Luna Degife, Desalegn Belay, Yoseph Worku, Tigist Tesfaye, Assefa Tufa, Abyot Bekele, Zegeye Hailemariam, Abay Hagos


Half of the world’s population is at risk of Dengue Fever (DF), a highly under-recognized and underreported mosquito-borne viral disease with high prevalence in the tropical and subtropical regions. Globally, an estimated 50 to 200 million cases and 20, 000 DF deaths occur annually as per the world health organization report. In Ethiopia, the first outbreak occurred in 2013 in Diredawa administration city. Afterward, three outbreaks have been reported from the eastern part of the country. We received a report of the fifth DF outbreak for Ethiopia and the second for Diredawa city on October 4, 2015. We conducted the investigation to confirm the outbreak, identify the risk factors for the repeatedly occurrence of the disease and implement control measures. We conducted un- matched case-control study and defined a suspected DF case as any person with fever of 2-7 days and 2 or more of the following: a headache, arthralgia, myalgia, rash, or bleeding from any part of the body. Controls were residents of Diredawa city without DF symptoms. We interviewed 70 Cases and 140 controls from all health facilities in Diredawa city from October 7 to 15; 2015. Epi Info version was used to analyze the data and multivariable logistic regression was conducted to assess risk factors for DF. Sixty-nine blood samples were collected for Laboratory confirmation.The mean age for cases was 23.7±9.5 standard deviation (SD) and for controls 31.2±13 SD. Close contact with DF patient (Adjusted odds ratio (AOR)=5.36, 95% confidence interval(CI): 2.75-10.44), nonuse of long-lasting insecticidal nets (AOR=2.74, 95% CI: 1.06-7.08) and availability of stagnant water in the village (AOR=3.61, 95% CI:1.31-9.93) were independent risk factors associated with higher rates of the disease. Forty-two samples were tested positive. Endemicity of DF is becoming a concern for Diredawa city after the first outbreak. Therefore, effective vector control activities need to be part of long-term preventive measures.

Keywords: dengue fever, Diredawa, outbreak, risk factors, second

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8 Influence of Species and Harvesting Height on Chemical Composition, Buffer Nitrogen Solubility and in vitro Ruminal Fermentation of Browse Tree Leaves

Authors: Thabiso M. Sebolai, Victor Mlambo, Solomon Tefera, Othusitse R. Madibela


In some tree species, sustained herbivory can induce changes in biosynthetic pathways resulting in overproduction of anti-nutritional secondary plant compounds. This inductive mechanism, which has not been demonstrated in semi-arid rangelands of South Africa, may result in browse leaves of lower nutritive value. In this study we investigate the interactive effect of browsing pressure and tree species on chemical composition, buffer nitrogen solubility index (NSI), in vitro ruminal dry matter degradability (IVDMD) and in vitro ruminal N degradability (IVND) of leaves. Leaves from Maytenus capitata, Olea africana, Coddia rudis, Carissa macrocarpa, Rhus refracta, Ziziphus mucronata, Boscia oliedes, Grewia robusta, Phyllanthus vessucosus and Ehretia rigida trees growing in a communal grazing area were harvested at two heights: browsable ( < 1.5 m) and non-browsable ( > 1.5 m), representing high and low browsing pressure, respectively. The type of animals utilizing the communal rangeland includes cattle at 1 livestock unit (450kg)/12 to 15 hectors and goats at 1 livestock unit/4 ha. Harvested leaves were dried, milled and analysed for proximate components, soluble phenolics, condensed tannins, minerals and in vitro ruminal fermentation. A significant plant species and harvesting height interaction effect (P < 0.05) was observed for total nitrogen (N) and soluble phenolics concentration. Tree species and harvesting height affected (P < 0.05) condensed tannin (CTs) content where samples harvested from the non-browsable height had higher (0.61 AU550 nm/200 mg) levels than those harvested at browsable height (0.55 AU550 nm/200 mg) while their interaction had no effects. Macro and micro-minerals were only influenced (P < 0.05) by browse species but not harvesting height. Species and harvesting height interacted (P < 0.05) to influence IVDMD and IVND of leaves at 12, 24 and 36 hours of incubation. The different browse leaves contained moderate to high protein, moderate level of phenolics and minerals, suggesting that they have the potential to provide supplementary nutrients for ruminants during the dry seasons.

Keywords: browse plants, chemical composition, harvesting heights, phenolics

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7 Productivity and Household Welfare Impact of Technology Adoption: A Microeconometric Analysis

Authors: Tigist Mekonnen Melesse


Since rural households are basically entitled to food through own production, improving productivity might lead to enhance the welfare of rural population through higher food availability at the household level and lowering the price of agricultural products. Increasing agricultural productivity through the use of improved technology is one of the desired outcomes from sensible food security and agricultural policy. The ultimate objective of this study was to evaluate the potential impact of improved agricultural technology adoption on smallholders’ crop productivity and welfare. The study is conducted in Ethiopia covering 1500 rural households drawn from four regions and 15 rural villages based on data collected by Ethiopian Rural Household Survey. Endogenous treatment effect model is employed in order to account for the selection bias on adoption decision that is expected from the self-selection of households in technology adoption. The treatment indicator, technology adoption is a binary variable indicating whether the household used improved seeds and chemical fertilizer or not. The outcome variables were cereal crop productivity, measured in real value of production and welfare of households, measured in real per capita consumption expenditure. Results of the analysis indicate that there is positive and significant effect of improved technology use on rural households’ crop productivity and welfare in Ethiopia. Adoption of improved seeds and chemical fertilizer alone will increase the crop productivity by 7.38 and 6.32 percent per year of each. Adoption of such technologies is also found to improve households’ welfare by 1.17 and 0.25 percent per month of each. The combined effect of both technologies when adopted jointly is increasing crop productivity by 5.82 percent and improving welfare by 0.42 percent. Besides, educational level of household head, farm size, labor use, participation in extension program, expenditure for input and number of oxen positively affect crop productivity and household welfare, while large household size negatively affect welfare of households. In our estimation, the average treatment effect of technology adoption (average treatment effect on the treated, ATET) is the same as the average treatment effect (ATE). This implies that the average predicted outcome for the treatment group is similar to the average predicted outcome for the whole population.

Keywords: Endogenous treatment effect, technologies, productivity, welfare, Ethiopia

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6 Epidemiology of Low Back Pain among Nurses Working in Public Hospitals of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Authors: Mengestie Mulugeta Belay, Serebe Abay Gebrie, Biruk Lambbiso Wamisho, Amare Worku


Background: Low back pain (LBP) related to nursing profession, is a very common public health problem throughout the world. Various risk factors have been implicated in the etiology and LBP is assumed to be of multi-factorial origin as individual, work-related and psychosocial factors can contribute to its development. Objectives: To determine the prevalence and to identify risk factors of LBP among nurses working in Addis Ababa City Public Hospitals, Ethiopia, in the year 2015. Settings: Addis Ababa University, Black-Lion (‘Tikur Anbessa’) Hospital-BLH, is the country’s highest tertiary level referral and teaching Hospital. The three departments in connection with this study: Radiology, Pathology and Orthopedics, run undergraduate and residency programs and receive referred patients from all over the country. Methods: A cross-sectional study with internal comparison was conducted throughout the period October-December, 2015. Sample was chosen by simple random sampling technique by taken the lists of nurses from human resource departments as a sampling frame. A well-structured, pre-tested and self-administered questionnaire was used to collect quantifiable information. The questionnaire included socio-demographic, back pain features, consequences of back pain, work-related and psychosocial factors. The collected data was entered into EpiInfo version 3.5.4 and was analyzed by SPSS. A probability level of 0.05 or less and 95% confidence level was used to indicate statistical significance. Ethical clearance was obtained from all respected administrative bodies, Hospitals and study participants. Results: The study included 395 nurses and gave a response rate of 91.9%. The mean age was 30.6 (±8.4) years. Majority of the respondents were female (285, 72.2%). Nearly half of the participants (n=181, 45.8% (95% CI (40.8%- 50.6%))) were complained low back pain. There was statistical significant association between low back pain and working shift, physical activities at work; sleep disturbance and felt little pleasure by doing things. Conclusion: A high prevalence of low back pain was found among nurses working in Addis Ababa Public Hospitals. Recognition and preventive measures like providing resting periods should be taken to reduce the risk of low back pain in nurses working in Public hospitals.

Keywords: low back pain, risk factors, nurses, public hospitals

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5 Optimization of MAG Welding Process Parameters Using Taguchi Design Method on Dead Mild Steel

Authors: Tadele Tesfaw, Ajit Pal Singh, Abebaw Mekonnen Gezahegn


Welding is a basic manufacturing process for making components or assemblies. Recent welding economics research has focused on developing the reliable machinery database to ensure optimum production. Research on welding of materials like steel is still critical and ongoing. Welding input parameters play a very significant role in determining the quality of a weld joint. The metal active gas (MAG) welding parameters are the most important factors affecting the quality, productivity and cost of welding in many industrial operations. The aim of this study is to investigate the optimization process parameters for metal active gas welding for 60x60x5mm dead mild steel plate work-piece using Taguchi method to formulate the statistical experimental design using semi-automatic welding machine. An experimental study was conducted at Bishoftu Automotive Industry, Bishoftu, Ethiopia. This study presents the influence of four welding parameters (control factors) like welding voltage (volt), welding current (ampere), wire speed (m/min.), and gas (CO2) flow rate (lit./min.) with three different levels for variability in the welding hardness. The objective functions have been chosen in relation to parameters of MAG welding i.e., welding hardness in final products. Nine experimental runs based on an L9 orthogonal array Taguchi method were performed. An orthogonal array, signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio and analysis of variance (ANOVA) are employed to investigate the welding characteristics of dead mild steel plate and used in order to obtain optimum levels for every input parameter at 95% confidence level. The optimal parameters setting was found is welding voltage at 22 volts, welding current at 125 ampere, wire speed at 2.15 m/min and gas flow rate at 19 l/min by using the Taguchi experimental design method within the constraints of the production process. Finally, six conformations welding have been carried out to compare the existing values; the predicated values with the experimental values confirm its effectiveness in the analysis of welding hardness (quality) in final products. It is found that welding current has a major influence on the quality of welded joints. Experimental result for optimum setting gave a better hardness of welding condition than initial setting. This study is valuable for different material and thickness variation of welding plate for Ethiopian industries.

Keywords: Weld quality, metal active gas welding, dead mild steel plate, orthogonal array, analysis of variance, Taguchi method

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4 In vivo Wound Healing Activity and Phytochemical Screening of the Crude Extract and Various Fractions of Kalanchoe petitiana A. Rich (Crassulaceae) Leaves in Mice

Authors: Awol Mekonnen, Temesgen Sidamo, Epherm Engdawork, Kaleab Asresb


Ethnopharmacological Relevance: The leaves of Kalanchoe petitiana A. Rich (Crassulaceae) are used in Ethiopian folk medicine for treatment of evil eye, fractured surface for bone setting and several skin disorders including for the treatment of sores, boils, and malignant wounds. Aim of the Study: In order to scientifically prove the claimed utilization of the plant, the effects of the extracts and the fractions were investigated using in vivo excision, incision and dead space wound models. Materials and Method: Mice were used for wound healing study, while rats and rabbit were used for skin irritation test. For studying healing activity, 80% methanolic extract and the fractions were formulated in strength of 5% and 10%, either as ointment (hydroalcoholic extract, aqueous and methanol fractions) or gel (chloroform fraction). Oral administration of the crude extract was used for dead space model. Negative controls were treated either with simple ointment or sodium carboxyl methyl cellulose xerogel, while positive controls were treated with nitrofurazone (0.2 w/v) skin ointment. Negative controls for dead space model were treated with 1% carboxy methyl cellulose. Parameters, including rate of wound contraction, period of complete epithelializtion, hydroxyproline contents and skin breaking strength were evaluated. Results: Significant wound healing activity was observed with ointment formulated from the crude extract at both 5% and 10% concentration (p<0.01) compared to controls in both excision and incision models. In dead space model, 600 mg/kg (p<0.01), but not 300 mg/kg, significantly increased hydroxyproline content. Fractions showed variable effect, with the chloroform fraction lacking any significant effect. Both 5% and 10% formulations of the aqueous and methanolic fractions significantly increased wound contraction, decreased epithelializtion time and increased hydroxyproline content in excision wound model (p<0.05) as compared to controls. These fractions were also endowed with higher skin breaking strength in incision wound model (p<0.01). Conclusions: The present study provided evidence that the leaves of Kalanchoe petitiana A. Rich possess remarkable wound healing activities supporting the folkloric assertion of the plant. Fractionation revealed that polar or semi-polar compound may play vital role, as both aqueous and methanolic fractions were endowed with wound healing activity.

Keywords: wound healing, Kalanchoae petitiana, excision wound, incision wound, dead space model

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3 Smallholder’s Agricultural Water Management Technology Adoption, Adoption Intensity and Their Determinants: The Case of Meda Welabu Woreda, Oromia, Ethiopia

Authors: Naod Mekonnen Anega


The very objective of this paper was to empirically identify technology tailored determinants to the adoption and adoption intensity (extent of use) of agricultural water management technologies in Meda Welabu Woreda, Oromia regional state, Ethiopia. Meda Welabu Woreda which is one of the administrative Woredas of the Oromia regional state was selected purposively as this Woreda is one of the Woredas in the region where small scale irrigation practices and the use of agricultural water management technologies can be found among smallholders. Using the existence water management practices (use of water management technologies) and land use pattern as a criterion Genale Mekchira Kebele is selected to undergo the study. A total of 200 smallholders were selected from the Kebele using the technique developed by Krejeie and Morgan. The study employed the Logit and Tobit models to estimate and identify the economic, social, geographical, household, institutional, psychological, technological factors that determine adoption and adoption intensity of water management technologies. The study revealed that while 55 of the sampled households are adopters of agricultural water management technology the rest 140 were non adopters of the technologies. Among the adopters included in the sample 97% are using river diversion technology (traditional) with traditional canal while the rest 7% percent are using pond with treadle pump technology. The Logit estimation reveled that while adoption of river diversion is positively and significantly affected by membership to local institutions, active labor force, income, access to credit and land ownership, adoption of treadle pump technology is positively and significantly affected by family size, education level, access to credit, extension contact, income, access to market, and slope. The Logit estimation also revealed that whereas, group action requirement, distance to farm, and size of active labor force negative and significantly influenced adoption of river diversion, age and perception has negatively and significantly influenced adoption decision of treadle pump technology. On the other hand, the Tobit estimation reveled that while adoption intensity (extent of use) of agricultural water management is positively and significantly affected by education, credit, and extension contact, access to credit, access to market and income. This study revealed that technology tailored study on adoption of Agricultural water management technologies (AWMTs) should be considered to indentify and scale up best agricultural water management practices. In fact, in countries like Ethiopia, where there is difference in social, economic, cultural, environmental and agro ecological conditions even within the same Kebele technology tailored study that fit the condition of each Kebele would help to identify and scale up best practices in agricultural water management.

Keywords: water management technology, adoption, adoption intensity, smallholders, technology tailored approach

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2 Determinants of Domestic Violence among Married Women Aged 15-49 Years in Sierra Leone by an Intimate Partner: A Cross-Sectional Study

Authors: Tesfaldet Mekonnen Estifanos, Chen Hui, Afewerki Weldezgi


Background: Intimate partner violence (hereafter IPV) is a major global public health challenge that tortures and disables women in the place where they are ought to be most secure within their own families. The fact that the family unit is commonly viewed as a private circle, violent acts towards women remains undermined. There are limited research and knowledge about the influencing factors linked to IPV in Sierra Leone. This study, therefore, estimates the prevalence rate and the predicting factors associated with IPV. Methods: Data were taken from Sierra-Leone Demographic and Health Survey (SDHS, 2013): the first in its form to incorporate information on domestic violence. Multistage cluster sampling research design was used, and information was gathered by a standard questionnaire. A total of 5185 respondents selected were interviewed, out of whom 870 were never been in union, thus excluded. To analyze the two dependent variables: experience of IPV, ‘ever’ and 'last 12 months prior to the survey', a total of 4315 (currently or formerly married) and 4029 women (currently in union) were included respectively. These dependent variables were constructed from the three forms of violence namely physical, emotional and sexual. Data analysis was applied using SPSS version 23, comprising three-step process. First, descriptive statistics were used to show the frequency distribution of both the outcome and explanatory variables. Second, bivariate analysis adopting chi-square test was applied to assess the individual relationship between the outcome and explanatory variables. Third, multivariate logistic regression analysis was undertaken using hierarchical modeling strategy to identify the influence of the explanatory variables on the outcome variables. Odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) were utilized to examine the association of the variables considering p-values less than 0.05 statistically significant. Results: The prevalence of lifetime IPV among ever married women was 48.4%, while 39.8% of those currently married experienced IPV in the previous year preceding the survey. Women having 1 to 4 and more than 5 number of ever born babies were almost certain to encounter lifetime IPV. However, women who own a property, and those who referenced 3-5 reasons for which wife-beating is acceptable were less probably to experience lifetime IPV. Attesting parental violence, partner’s dominant marital behavior, and women afraid of their partner were the variables related to both experience of IPV ‘ever’ and ‘the previous year prior to the survey’. Respondents who concur that wife-beating is sensible in certain situations and occupations under the professional category had diminished chances of revealing IPV in the year prior to the data collection. Conclusion: This study indicated that factors significantly correlated with IPV in Sierra-Leone are mostly linked with husband related factors specifically, marital controlling behaviors. Addressing IPV in Sierra-Leone requires joint efforts that target men raise awareness to address controlling behavior and empower security in affiliations.

Keywords: husband behavior, married women, partner violence, Sierra Leone

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1 Correlates of Comprehensive HIV/AIDS Knowledge and Acceptance Attitude Towards People Living with HIV/AIDS: A Cross-Sectional Study among Unmarried Young Women in Uganda

Authors: Tesfaldet Mekonnen Estifanos, Chen Hui, Afewerki Weldezgi


Background: Youth in general and young females in particular, remain at the center of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Sexual risk-taking among young unmarried women is relatively high and are the most vulnerable and highly exposed to HIV/AIDS. Improvements in the status of HIV/AIDS knowledge and acceptance attitude towards people living with HIV (PLWHIV) plays a great role in averting the incidence of HIV/AIDS. Thus, the aim of the study was to explore the level and correlates of HIV/AIDS knowledge and accepting attitude toward PLWHIV. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted using data from the Uganda Demographic Health Survey 2016 (UDHS-2016). National level representative household surveys using a multistage cluster probability sampling method, face to face interviews with standard questionnaires were performed. Unmarried women aged 15-24 years with a sample size of 2019 were selected from the total sample of 8674 women aged 15-49 years and were analyzed using SPSS version 23. Independent variables such as age, religion, educational level, residence, and wealth index were included. Two binary outcome variables (comprehensive HIV/AIDS knowledge and acceptance attitude toward PLWHIV) were utilized. We used the chi-square test as well as multivariate regression analysis to explore correlations of explanatory variables with the outcome variables. The results were reported by odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence interval (95% CI), taking a p-value less than 0.05 as significant. Results: Almost all (99.3%) of the unmarried women aged 15-24 years were aware of HIV/AIDS, but only 51.2% had adequate comprehensive knowledge on HIV/AIDS. Only 69.4% knew both methods: using a condom every time had sex, and having only one faithful uninfected partner can prevent HIV/AIDS transmission. About 66.6% of the unmarried women reject at least two common local misconceptions about HIV/AIDS. Moreover, an alarmingly few (20.3%) of the respondents had a positive acceptance attitude to PLWHIV. On multivariate analysis, age (20-24 years), living in urban, being educated and wealthier, were predictors of having adequate comprehensive HIV/AIDS knowledge. On the other hand, research participants with adequate comprehensive knowledge about HIV/AIDS were highly likely (OR, 1.94 95% CI, 1.52-2.46) to have a positive acceptance attitude to PLWHIV than those with inadequate knowledge. Respondents with no education, Muslim, and Pentecostal religion were emerged less likely to have a positive acceptance attitude to PLWHIV. Conclusion: This study found out the highly accepted level of awareness, but the knowledge and positive acceptance attitude are not encouraging. Thus, expanding access to comprehensive sexuality and strengthening educational campaigns on HIV/AIDS in communities, health facilities, and schools is needed with a greater focus on disadvantaged women having low educational level, poor socioeconomic status, and those residing in rural areas. Sexual risk behaviors among the most affected people - young women have also a role in the spread of HIV/AIDS. Hence, further research assessing the significant contributing factors for sexual risk-taking might have a positive impact on the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Keywords: acceptance attitude, HIV/AIDS, knowledge, unmarried women

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