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

Search results for: R.Anita

25 Strategic Maintenance Management of Built Facilities in an Organisation

Authors: Anita D. Adamu, Winston M. W. Shakantu

Abstract:

Maintenance management is no longer a stand-alone activity. It has now assumed a strategic position in many organisations that have recognised its importance in achieving primary goals and a key aspect of effective management of facilities. This paper aims at providing an understanding of the role and function of strategic management in creating and sustaining an effective maintenance management system in an organisation. The background provides an articulated concept and principles of strategic management. The theoretical concepts paved way for a conceptual framework for which strategic management can be integrated into the maintenance management system of an organisation to improve effectiveness in the maintenance of facilities.

Keywords: Facilities, maintenance management, organisations, strategic management.

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24 Production of Cellulases by Aspergillus Heteromorphus from Wheat Straw under Submerged Fermentation

Authors: Anita Singh, Namita Singh, Narsi R. Bishnoi

Abstract:

To investigate the production of cellulases from Aspergillus heteromorphus, submerged fermentation was performed using wheat straw as substrate. Optimization of saccharification conditions like pH, temperature and time were studied. Highest reducing sugar was released on 5th day at 5 pH, 30° C temperature. When A. heteromorphous was grown on wheat straw in submerged fermentation after 5 days incubation at 30 ° C, 3.2 IU/ml and 83 IU/ml, filter paper activity and CMCase activity respectively.

Keywords: Aspergillus heteromorphus, Wheat Straw, Submerged Fermentation, Production of Cellulases

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23 Online Teaching Methods and Student Satisfaction during a Pandemic

Authors: Anita Kéri

Abstract:

With the outbreak of the global pandemic of COVID-19, online education characterizes today’s higher education. For some higher education institutions (HEIs), the shift from classroom education to online solutions was swift and smooth, and students are continuously asked about their experience regarding online education. Therefore, there is a growing emphasis on student satisfaction with online education, a field that had emerged previously, but has become the center of higher education and research interest today. The aim of the current paper is to give a brief overview of the tools used in the online education of marketing-related classes at the examined university and to investigate student satisfaction with the applied teaching methodologies with the tool of a questionnaire. Results show that students are most satisfied with their teachers’ competences and preparedness, while they are least satisfied with online class quality, where it seems that further steps are needed to be taken.

Keywords: Online teaching, pandemic, satisfaction, students.

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22 Steam Gasification of Palm Kernel Shell (PKS): Effect of Fe/BEA and Ni/BEA Catalysts and Steam to Biomass Ratio on Composition of Gaseous Products

Authors: M.F. Mohamad, Anita Ramli, S.E.E Misi, S. Yusup

Abstract:

This work presents the hydrogen production from steam gasification of palm kernel shell (PKS) at 700 oC in the presence of 5% Ni/BEA and 5% Fe/BEA as catalysts. The steam gasification was performed in two-staged reactors to evaluate the effect of calcinations temperature and the steam to biomass ratio on the product gas composition. The catalytic activity of Ni/BEA catalyst decreases with increasing calcinations temperatures from 500 to 700 oC. The highest H2 concentration is produced by Fe/BEA (600) with more than 71 vol%. The catalytic activity of the catalysts tested is found to correspond to its physicochemical properties. The optimum range for steam to biomass ratio if found to be between 2 to 4. Excess steam content results in temperature drop in the gasifier which is undesirable for the gasification reactions.

Keywords: Hydrogen, Palm Kernel Shell, Steam gasification, Ni/BEA, Fe/BEA

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21 A Survey on MAC Protocols for Vehicular Ad-Hoc Networks

Authors: B. Cynthia Sherin, E. A. Mary Anita

Abstract:

Vehicular Ad-hoc Network (VANET) is an emerging and very promising technology that has great demand on the access capability of the existing wireless technology. VANETs help improve traffic safety and efficiency. Each vehicle can exchange their information to inform the other vehicles about the current status of the traffic flow or a dangerous situation such as an accident. To achieve these, a reliable and efficient Medium Access Control (MAC) protocol with minimal transmission collisions is required. High speed nodes, absence of infrastructure, variations in topology and their QoS requirements makes it difficult for designing a MAC protocol in vehicular networks. There are several MAC protocols proposed for VANETs to ensure that all the vehicles could send safety messages without collisions by reducing the end-to-end delay and packet loss ratio. This paper gives an overview of the several proposed MAC protocols for VANETs along with their benefits and limitations and presents an overall classification based on their characteristics.

Keywords: MAC Protocols, QoS, VANET, V2V, V2I.

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20 Dynamic Control Modeling and Simulation of a UPFC-SMES Compensator in Power Systems

Authors: K. Saravanan, R. Anita

Abstract:

Flexible AC Transmission Systems (FACTS) is granting a new group of advanced power electronic devices emerging for enhancement of the power system performance. Unified Power Flow Controller (UPFC) is a recent version of FACTS devices for power system applications. The back-up energy supply system incorporated with UPFC is providing a complete control of real and reactive power at the same time and hence is competent to improve the performance of an electrical power system. In this article, backup energy supply unit such as superconducting magnetic energy storage (SMES) is integrated with UPFC. In addition, comparative exploration of UPFC–battery, UPFC–UC and UPFC–SMES performance is evaluated through the vibrant simulation by using MATLAB/Simulink software.

Keywords: Power system, FACTS, UPFC, DC-DC chopper, battery, UC, SMES.

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19 Performance Evaluation of Complex Valued Neural Networks Using Various Error Functions

Authors: Anita S. Gangal, P. K. Kalra, D. S. Chauhan

Abstract:

The backpropagation algorithm in general employs quadratic error function. In fact, most of the problems that involve minimization employ the Quadratic error function. With alternative error functions the performance of the optimization scheme can be improved. The new error functions help in suppressing the ill-effects of the outliers and have shown good performance to noise. In this paper we have tried to evaluate and compare the relative performance of complex valued neural network using different error functions. During first simulation for complex XOR gate it is observed that some error functions like Absolute error, Cauchy error function can replace Quadratic error function. In the second simulation it is observed that for some error functions the performance of the complex valued neural network depends on the architecture of the network whereas with few other error functions convergence speed of the network is independent of architecture of the neural network.

Keywords: Complex backpropagation algorithm, complex errorfunctions, complex valued neural network, split activation function.

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18 Internet Purchases in European Union Countries: Multiple Linear Regression Approach

Authors: Ksenija Dumičić, Anita Čeh Časni, Irena Palić

Abstract:

This paper examines economic and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) development influence on recently increasing Internet purchases by individuals for European Union member states. After a growing trend for Internet purchases in EU27 was noticed, all possible regression analysis was applied using nine independent variables in 2011. Finally, two linear regression models were studied in detail. Conducted simple linear regression analysis confirmed the research hypothesis that the Internet purchases in analyzed EU countries is positively correlated with statistically significant variable Gross Domestic Product per capita (GDPpc). Also, analyzed multiple linear regression model with four regressors, showing ICT development level, indicates that ICT development is crucial for explaining the Internet purchases by individuals, confirming the research hypothesis.

Keywords: European Union, Internet purchases, multiple linear regression model, outlier

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17 Deep iCrawl: An Intelligent Vision-Based Deep Web Crawler

Authors: R.Anita, V.Ganga Bharani, N.Nityanandam, Pradeep Kumar Sahoo

Abstract:

The explosive growth of World Wide Web has posed a challenging problem in extracting relevant data. Traditional web crawlers focus only on the surface web while the deep web keeps expanding behind the scene. Deep web pages are created dynamically as a result of queries posed to specific web databases. The structure of the deep web pages makes it impossible for traditional web crawlers to access deep web contents. This paper, Deep iCrawl, gives a novel and vision-based approach for extracting data from the deep web. Deep iCrawl splits the process into two phases. The first phase includes Query analysis and Query translation and the second covers vision-based extraction of data from the dynamically created deep web pages. There are several established approaches for the extraction of deep web pages but the proposed method aims at overcoming the inherent limitations of the former. This paper also aims at comparing the data items and presenting them in the required order.

Keywords: Crawler, Deep web, Web Database

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16 Multidimensional Visualization Tools for Analysis of Expression Data

Authors: Urska Cvek, Marjan Trutschl, Randolph Stone II, Zanobia Syed, John L. Clifford, Anita L. Sabichi

Abstract:

Expression data analysis is based mostly on the statistical approaches that are indispensable for the study of biological systems. Large amounts of multidimensional data resulting from the high-throughput technologies are not completely served by biostatistical techniques and are usually complemented with visual, knowledge discovery and other computational tools. In many cases, in biological systems we only speculate on the processes that are causing the changes, and it is the visual explorative analysis of data during which a hypothesis is formed. We would like to show the usability of multidimensional visualization tools and promote their use in life sciences. We survey and show some of the multidimensional visualization tools in the process of data exploration, such as parallel coordinates and radviz and we extend them by combining them with the self-organizing map algorithm. We use a time course data set of transitional cell carcinoma of the bladder in our examples. Analysis of data with these tools has the potential to uncover additional relationships and non-trivial structures.

Keywords: microarrays, visualization, parallel coordinates, radviz, self-organizing maps.

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15 Quality Changes of Venison Marinated in Red Wine Marinade during Storage

Authors: Laima Silina, Ilze Gramatina, Lija Dukalska, Liga Skudra, Tatjana Rakcejeva, Dace Klava, Anita Blija

Abstract:

The objective of the present study was to determine quality parameters changes of red wine marinade marinated venison during storage. Beef as a control was analysed. Protein, fat, moisture and pH content dynamics as well microbiological quality was analyzed. The meat pieces were marinated in red wine marinade at 4±2ºC temperature for 48±1h. Marinated meat was placed in polypropylene trays, hermetically sealed with high barrier polymer film Multibarrier 60 under modified atmosphere (CO2 40%+N2 60%) without and with oxygen absorber sachets, as a control packaging in air ambiance packed marinated venison and beef was used. Meat samples were analyzed after 0, 4, 7, 11 and 14 days of storage. During the storage of meat, protein and moisture content significantly (p<0.05) decreased, pH and colony forming units significantly (p<0.05) increased, fat content does not change in all treatments irrespective of the packaging method.

Keywords: Marinating, modified atmosphere, quality, venison.

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14 In situ Biodegradation of Endosulfan, Imidacloprid, and Carbendazim Using Indigenous Bacterial Cultures of Agriculture Fields of Uttarakhand, India

Authors: Geeta Negi, Pankaj, Anjana Srivastava, Anita Sharma

Abstract:

In the present study, presence of endosulfan, imidacloprid, carbendazim, in the soil /vegetables/cereals and water samples was observed in agriculture fields of Uttarakhand. In view of biodegradation of these pesticides, 9 bacterial isolates were recovered from the soil samples of the fields which tolerated endosulfan, imidacloprid, carbendazim from 100 to 200 µg/ml. Three bacterial consortia used for in vitro bioremediation experiments were consisted of 3 bacterial isolates for carbendazim, imidacloprid and endosulfan, respectively. Maximum degradation (87 and 83%) of α and β endosulfan respectively was observed in soil slurry by consortium. Degradation of Imidacloprid and carbendazim under similar conditions was 88.4 and 77.5% respectively. FT-IR analysis of biodegraded samples of pesticides in liquid media showed stretching of various bonds. GC-MS of biodegraded endosulfan sample in soil slurry showed the presence of nontoxic intermediates. A pot trial with Bacterial treatments lowered down the uptake of pesticides in onion plants.

Keywords: Biodegradation, carbendazim, consortium, Endosulfan.

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13 A Signature-Based Secure Authentication Framework for Vehicular Ad Hoc Networks

Authors: J. Jenefa, E. A. Mary Anita

Abstract:

Vehicular Ad hoc NETwork (VANET) is a kind of Mobile Ad hoc NETwork (MANET). It allows the vehicles to communicate with one another as well as with nearby Road Side Units (RSU) and Regional Trusted Authorities (RTA). Vehicles communicate through On-Board Units (OBU) in which privacy has to be assured which will avoid the misuse of private data. A secure authentication framework for VANETs is proposed in which Public Key Cryptography (PKC) based adaptive pseudonym scheme is used to generate self-generated pseudonyms. Self-generated pseudonyms are used instead of real IDs for privacy preservation and non-repudiation. The ID-Based Signature (IBS) and ID-Based Online/Offline Signature (IBOOS) schemes are used for authentication. IBS is used to authenticate between vehicle and RSU whereas IBOOS provides authentication among vehicles. Security attacks like impersonation attack in the network are resolved and the attacking nodes are rejected from the network, thereby ensuring secure communication among the vehicles in the network. Simulation results shows that the proposed system provides better authentication in VANET environment.

Keywords: Non-repudiation, privacy preservation, public key cryptography, self- generated pseudonym.

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12 Forecasting Unemployment Rate in Selected European Countries Using Smoothing Methods

Authors: Ksenija Dumičić, Anita Čeh Časni, Berislav Žmuk

Abstract:

The aim of this paper is to select the most accurate forecasting method for predicting the future values of the unemployment rate in selected European countries. In order to do so, several forecasting techniques adequate for forecasting time series with trend component, were selected, namely: double exponential smoothing (also known as Holt`s method) and Holt-Winters` method which accounts for trend and seasonality. The results of the empirical analysis showed that the optimal model for forecasting unemployment rate in Greece was Holt-Winters` additive method. In the case of Spain, according to MAPE, the optimal model was double exponential smoothing model. Furthermore, for Croatia and Italy the best forecasting model for unemployment rate was Holt-Winters` multiplicative model, whereas in the case of Portugal the best model to forecast unemployment rate was Double exponential smoothing model. Our findings are in line with European Commission unemployment rate estimates.

Keywords: European Union countries, exponential smoothing methods, forecast accuracy unemployment rate.

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11 Effects of Environmental Factors on Polychaete Assemblage in Penang National Park, Malaysia

Authors: Mohammad Gholizadeh, Khairun Yahya, Anita Talib, Omar Ahmad

Abstract:

Macrobenthos distribution along the coastal waters of Penang National Park was studid to estimate the effect of different environmental parameters at three stations, during six sampling months, from June 2010 to April 2011. The aim of this survey was to investigate different environment stress over soft bottom polychaete community along Teluk Ketapang and Pantai Acheh (Penang National Park) over a year period. Variations in the polychaete community were evaluated using univariate and multivariate methods. A total of 604 individuals were examined which was grouped into 23 families. Family Nereidae was the most abundant (22.68%), followed by Spionidae (22.02%), Hesionidae (12.58%), Nephtylidae (9.27%) and Orbiniidae (8.61%). It is noticeable that good results can only be obtained on the basis of good taxonomic resolution. The maximum Shannon-Wiener diversity (H'=2.16) was recorded at distance 200m and 1200m (August 2010) in Teluk Ketapang and lowest value of diversity was found at distance 1200m (December 2010) in Teluk Ketapang.

Keywords: Polychaete assemblage, environment factor, Pantai Acheh, Teluk Ketapang.

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10 Developing a Customizable Serious Game and Its Applicability in the Classroom

Authors: Anita Kéri

Abstract:

Recent developments in the field of education have led to a renewed interest in teaching methodologies and practices. Gamification is fast becoming a key instrument in the education of new generations and besides other methods, serious games have become the center of attention. Ready-built serious games are available for most higher education institutions to buy and implement. However, monetary restraints and the unalterable nature of the games might deter most higher education institutions from the application of these serious games. Therefore, there is a continuously growing need for a customizable serious game that has been developed based on a concrete need analysis and experts’ opinion. There has been little evidence so far of serious games that have been created based on relevant and current need analysis from higher education institution teachers, professional practitioners and students themselves. Therefore, the aim of this current paper is to analyze the needs of higher education institution educators with special emphasis on their needs, the applicability of serious games in their classrooms, and exploring options for the development of a customizable serious game framework. The paper undertakes to analyze workshop discussions on implementing serious games in education and propose a customizable serious game framework applicable in the education of the new generation. Research results show that the most important feature of a serious game is its customizability. The fact that practitioners are able to manage different scenarios and upload their own content to a game seems to be a key to the increasingly widespread application of serious games in the classroom.

Keywords: Education, gamification, game-based learning, serious games.

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9 Triangular Geometric Feature for Offline Signature Verification

Authors: Zuraidasahana Zulkarnain, Mohd Shafry Mohd Rahim, Nor Anita Fairos Ismail, Mohd Azhar M. Arsad

Abstract:

Handwritten signature is accepted widely as a biometric characteristic for personal authentication. The use of appropriate features plays an important role in determining accuracy of signature verification; therefore, this paper presents a feature based on the geometrical concept. To achieve the aim, triangle attributes are exploited to design a new feature since the triangle possesses orientation, angle and transformation that would improve accuracy. The proposed feature uses triangulation geometric set comprising of sides, angles and perimeter of a triangle which is derived from the center of gravity of a signature image. For classification purpose, Euclidean classifier along with Voting-based classifier is used to verify the tendency of forgery signature. This classification process is experimented using triangular geometric feature and selected global features. Based on an experiment that was validated using Grupo de Senales 960 (GPDS-960) signature database, the proposed triangular geometric feature achieves a lower Average Error Rates (AER) value with a percentage of 34% as compared to 43% of the selected global feature. As a conclusion, the proposed triangular geometric feature proves to be a more reliable feature for accurate signature verification.

Keywords: biometrics, euclidean classifier, feature extraction, offline signature verification, VOTING-based classifier

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8 An Elaborate Survey on Node Replication Attack in Static Wireless Sensor Networks

Authors: N. S. Usha, E. A. Mary Anita

Abstract:

Recent innovations in the field of technology led to the use of   wireless sensor networks in various applications, which consists of a number of small, very tiny, low-cost, non-tamper proof and resource constrained sensor nodes. These nodes are often distributed and deployed in an unattended environment, so as to collaborate with each other to share data or information. Amidst various applications, wireless sensor network finds a major role in monitoring battle field in military applications. As these non-tamperproof nodes are deployed in an unattended location, they are vulnerable to many security attacks. Amongst many security attacks, the node replication attack seems to be more threatening to the network users. Node Replication attack is caused by an attacker, who catches one true node, duplicates the first certification and cryptographic materials, makes at least one or more copies of the caught node and spots them at certain key positions in the system to screen or disturb the network operations. Preventing the occurrence of such node replication attacks in network is a challenging task. In this survey article, we provide the classification of detection schemes and also explore the various schemes proposed in each category. Also, we compare the various detection schemes against certain evaluation parameters and also its limitations. Finally, we provide some suggestions for carrying out future research work against such attacks.

Keywords: Clone node, data security, detection schemes, node replication attack, wireless sensor networks.

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7 Removal of Ni(II), Zn(II) and Pb(II) ions from Single Metal Aqueous Solution using Activated Carbon Prepared from Rice Husk

Authors: Mohd F. Taha, Chong F. Kiat, Maizatul S. Shaharun, Anita Ramli

Abstract:

The abundance and availability of rice husk, an agricultural waste, make them as a good source for precursor of activated carbon. In this work, rice husk-based activated carbons were prepared via base treated chemical activation process prior the carbonization process. The effect of carbonization temperatures (400, 600 and 800oC) on their pore structure was evaluated through morphology analysis using scanning electron microscope (SEM). Sample carbonized at 800oC showed better evolution and development of pores as compared to those carbonized at 400 and 600oC. The potential of rice husk-based activated carbon as an alternative adsorbent was investigated for the removal of Ni(II), Zn(II) and Pb(II) from single metal aqueous solution. The adsorption studies using rice husk-based activated carbon as an adsorbent were carried out as a function of contact time at room temperature and the metal ions were analyzed using atomic absorption spectrophotometer (AAS). The ability to remove metal ion from single metal aqueous solution was found to be improved with the increasing of carbonization temperature. Among the three metal ions tested, Pb(II) ion gave the highest adsorption on rice husk-based activated carbon. The results obtained indicate the potential to utilize rice husk as a promising precursor for the preparation of activated carbon for removal of heavy metals.

Keywords: Activated carbon, metal ion adsorption, rice husk, wastewater treatment.

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6 Evaluation of the Microscopic-Observation Drug-Susceptibility Assay Drugs Concentration for Detection of Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis

Authors: Anita, Sari Septiani Tangke, Rusdina Bte Ladju, Nasrum Massi

Abstract:

New diagnostic tools are urgently needed to interrupt the transmission of tuberculosis and multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. The microscopic-observation drug-susceptibility (MODS) assay is a rapid, accurate and simple liquid culture method to detect multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB). MODS were evaluated to determine a lower and same concentration of isoniazid and rifampin for detection of MDR-TB. Direct drug-susceptibility testing was performed with the use of the MODS assay. Drug-sensitive control strains were tested daily. The drug concentrations that used for both isoniazid and rifampin were at the same concentration: 0.16, 0.08 and 0.04μg per milliliter. We tested 56 M. tuberculosis clinical isolates and the control strains M. tuberculosis H37RV. All concentration showed same result. Of 53 M. tuberculosis clinical isolates, 14 were MDR-TB, 38 were susceptible with isoniazid and rifampin, 1 was resistant with isoniazid only. Drug-susceptibility testing was performed with the use of the proportion method using Mycobacteria Growth Indicator Tube (MGIT) system as reference. The result of MODS assay using lower concentration was significance (P<0.001) compare with the reference methods.

A lower and same concentration of isoniazid and rifampin can be used to detect MDR-TB. Operational cost and application can be more efficient and easier in resource-limited environments. However, additional studies evaluating the MODS using lower and same concentration of isoniazid and rifampin must be conducted with a larger number of clinical isolates.

Keywords: Isoniazid, MODS assay, MDR-TB, Rifampin.

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5 Electroencephalography Activity during Sensory Organization Balance Test

Authors: Tariq Ali Gujar, Anita Hökelmann

Abstract:

Postural balance plays essential role throughout life in daily activities. Somatosensory, visual and vestibular inputs play the fundamental role in maintaining body equilibrium to balance the posture. The aim of this study was to find out electroencephalography (EEG) responses during balance activity of young people during Sensory Organization Balance Test. The outcome of this study will help to create the fitness and neurorehabilitation plan. 25 young people (25 ± 3.1 years) have been analyzed on Balance Master NeuroCom® with the coupling of Brain Vision 32 electrode wireless EEG system during the Sensory Organization Test. From the results it has been found that the balance score of samples is significantly higher under the influence of somatosensory input as compared to visual and vestibular input (p < 0.05). The EEG between somatosensory and visual input to balance the posture showed significantly higher (p < 0.05) alpha and beta activities during somatosensory input in somatosensory, attention and visual functions of the cortex whereas executive and motor functions of the cerebral cortex showed significantly higher (p < 0.05) alpha EEG activity during the visual input. The results suggest that somatosensory and attention function of the cerebral cortex has alpha and beta activity, respectively high during somatosensory and vestibular input in maintaining balance. In patients with balance impairments both physical and cognitive training, including neurofeedback will be helpful to improve balance abilities.

Keywords: Balance, electroencephalography activity, somatosensory, visual, vestibular.

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4 Distribution of Macrobenthic Polychaete Families in Relation to Environmental Parameters in North West Penang, Malaysia

Authors: Mohammad Gholizadeh, Khairun Yahya, Anita Talib, Omar Ahmad

Abstract:

The distribution of macrobenthic polychaetes along the coastal waters of Penang National Park was surveyed to estimate the effect of various environmental parameters at three stations (200m, 600m and 1200m) from the shoreline, during six sampling months, from June 2010 to April 2011.The use of polychaetes in descriptive ecology is surveyed in the light of a recent investigation particularly concerning the soft bottom biota environments. Polychaetes, often connected in the former to the notion of opportunistic species able to proliferate after an enhancement in organic matter, had performed a momentous role particularly with regard to effected soft-bottom habitats. The objective of this survey was to investigate different environment stress over soft bottom polychaete community along Teluk Ketapang and Pantai Acheh (Penang National Park) over a year period. Variations in the polychaete community were evaluated using univariate and multivariate methods. The results of PCA analysis displayed a positive relation between macrobenthic community structures and environmental parameters such as sediment particle size and organic matter in the coastal water. A total of 604 individuals were examined which was grouped into 23 families. Family Nereidae was the most abundant (22.68%), followed by Spionidae (22.02%), Hesionidae (12.58%), Nephtylidae (9.27%) and Orbiniidae (8.61%). It is noticeable that good results can only be obtained on the basis of good taxonomic resolution. We proposed that, in monitoring surveys, operative time could be optimized not only by working at a highertaxonomic level on the entire macrobenthic data set, but by also choosing an especially indicative group and working at lower taxonomic and good level.

Keywords: Polychaete families, environment parameters, Bioindicators, Pantai Acheh, Teluk Ketapang.

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3 Microbiological Profile of UTI along with Their Antibiotic Sensitivity Pattern with Special Reference to Nitrofurantoin

Authors: Rupinder Bakshi, Geeta Walia, Anita Gupta

Abstract:

Urinary Tract Infections are considered as one of the most common bacterial infections with an estimated annual global incidence of 150 million. Antimicrobial drug resistance is one of the major threats due to wide spread usage of uncontrolled antibiotics. In this study, a total number of 9149 urine samples were collected from R.H Patiala and processed in the Department of Microbiology G. M. C Patiala (January 2013 to December 2013). Urine samples were inoculated on MacConkey’s and blood agar plates and incubated at 370C for 24 hrs. The organisms were identified by colony characters, Gram’s staining, and biochemical reactions. Antimicrobial susceptibility of the isolates was determined against various antimicrobial agents (Hi – Media Mumbai India) by Kirby Bauer DISK diffusion method on Muller Hinton agar plates. Maximum patients were in the age group of 21-30 yrs followed by 31-40 yrs. Males (34%) are less prone to urinary tract infections than females (66%). Culture was positive in 25% of the samples. Escherichia coli was the most common isolate 60.3% followed by Klebsiella pneumoniae 13.5%, Proteus spp. 9% and Staphylococcus aureus 7.6%. Most of the urinary isolates were sensitive to, carbepenems, Aztreonam, Amikacin, and Piperacillin + Tazobactum. All the isolates showed a good sensitivity towards Nitrofurantoin (82%). ESBL production was found to be 70.6% in Escherichia coli and 29.4% in Klebsiella pneumonia. Susceptibility of ESBL producers to Imipenem, Nitrofurantoin and Amikacin were found to be 100%, 76%, and 75% respectively. Uropathogens are increasingly showing resistance to many antibiotics making empiric management of outpatient UTIs challenging. Ampicillin, Cotrimoxazole and Ciprofloxacin should not be used in empiric treatment. Nitrofurantoin could be used in lower urinary tract infection. Knowledge of uropathogens and their antimicrobial susceptibility pattern in a geographical region will help in appropriate and judicious antibiotic usage in a health care setup.

Keywords: Urinary Tract Infection, UTI, antibiotic susceptibility pattern, ESBL.

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2 Screening and Evaluation of in vivo and in vitro Generated Insulin Plant (Vernonia divergens) for Antimicrobial and Anticancer Activities

Authors: Santosh Kumar, Anand Prakash, Kanak Sinha, Anita K Verma

Abstract:

Vernonia divergens Benth., commonly known as “Insulin Plant” (Fam: Asteraceae) is a potent sugar killer. Locally the leaves of the plant, boiled in water are successfully administered to a large number of diabetic patients. The present study evaluates the putative anti-diabetic ingredients, isolated from the in vivo and in vitro grown plantlets of V. divergens for their antimicrobial and anticancer activities. Sterilized explants of nodal segments were cultured on MS (Musashige and Skoog, 1962) medium in presence of different combinations of hormones. Multiple shoots along with bunch of roots were regenerated at 1mg l-1 BAP and 0.5 mg l-1 NAA. Micro-plantlets were separated and sub-cultured on the double strength (2X) of the above combination of hormones leading to increased length of roots and shoots. These plantlets were successfully transferred to soil and survived well in nature. The ethanol extract of plantlets from both in vivo & in vitro sources were prepared in soxhlet extractor and then concentrated to dryness under reduced pressure in rotary evaporator. Thus obtainedconcentrated extracts showed significant inhibitory activity against gram negative bacteria like Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa but no inhibition was found against gram positive bacteria. Further, these ethanol extracts were screened for in vitro percentage cytotoxicity at different time periods (24 h, 48 h and 72 h) of different dilutions. The in vivo plant extract inhibited the growth of EAC mouse cell lines in the range of 65, 66, 78, and 88% at 100, 50, 25 & 12.5μg mL-1 but at 72 h of treatment. In case of the extract of in vitro origin, the inhibition was found against EAC cell lines even at 48h. During spectrophotometric scanning, the extracts exhibited different maxima (ʎ) - four peaks in in vitro extracts as against single in in vivo preparation suggesting the possible change in the nature of ingredients during micropropagation through tissue culture techniques.

Keywords: Anti-cancer, Anti-microbial, EAC mouse cell, Tissue culture, Vernonia divergens.

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1 Computer-Assisted Management of Building Climate and Microgrid with Model Predictive Control

Authors: Vinko Lešić, Mario Vašak, Anita Martinčević, Marko Gulin, Antonio Starčić, Hrvoje Novak

Abstract:

With 40% of total world energy consumption, building systems are developing into technically complex large energy consumers suitable for application of sophisticated power management approaches to largely increase the energy efficiency and even make them active energy market participants. Centralized control system of building heating and cooling managed by economically-optimal model predictive control shows promising results with estimated 30% of energy efficiency increase. The research is focused on implementation of such a method on a case study performed on two floors of our faculty building with corresponding sensors wireless data acquisition, remote heating/cooling units and central climate controller. Building walls are mathematically modeled with corresponding material types, surface shapes and sizes. Models are then exploited to predict thermal characteristics and changes in different building zones. Exterior influences such as environmental conditions and weather forecast, people behavior and comfort demands are all taken into account for deriving price-optimal climate control. Finally, a DC microgrid with photovoltaics, wind turbine, supercapacitor, batteries and fuel cell stacks is added to make the building a unit capable of active participation in a price-varying energy market. Computational burden of applying model predictive control on such a complex system is relaxed through a hierarchical decomposition of the microgrid and climate control, where the former is designed as higher hierarchical level with pre-calculated price-optimal power flows control, and latter is designed as lower level control responsible to ensure thermal comfort and exploit the optimal supply conditions enabled by microgrid energy flows management. Such an approach is expected to enable the inclusion of more complex building subsystems into consideration in order to further increase the energy efficiency.

Keywords: Energy-efficient buildings, Hierarchical model predictive control, Microgrid power flow optimization, Price-optimal building climate control.

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