Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 337

Search results for: skin

337 Bio-Psycho-Social Consequences and Effects in Fall-Efficacy Scale in Seniors Using Exercise Intervention of Motor Learning According to Yoga Techniques

Authors: Milada Krejci, Martin Hill, Vaclav Hosek, Dobroslava Jandova, Jiri Kajzar, Pavel Blaha

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The paper declares effects of exercise intervention of the research project “Basic research of balance changes in seniors”, granted by the Czech Science Foundation. The objective of the presented study is to define predictors, which influence bio-psycho-social consequences and effects of balance ability in senior 65 years old and above. We focused on the Fall-Efficacy Scale changes evaluation in seniors. Comprehensive hypothesis of the project declares, that motion uncertainty (dyskinesia) can negatively affect the well-being of a senior in bio-psycho-social context. In total, random selection and testing of 100 seniors (30 males, 70 females) from Prague and Central Bohemian region was provided. The sample was divided by stratified random selection into experimental and control groups, who underwent input and output testing. For diagnostics the methods of Medical Anamnesis, Functional anthropological examinations, Tinetti Balance Assessment Tool, SF-36 Health Survey, Anamnestic comparative self-assessment scale were used. Intervention method called "Life in Balance" based on yoga techniques was applied in four-week cycle. Results of multivariate regression were verified by repeated measures ANOVA: subject factor, phase of intervention (between-subject factor), body fluid (within-subject factor) and phase of intervention × body fluid interaction). ANOVA was performed with a repetition involving the factors of subjects, experimental/control group, phase of intervention (independent variable), and x phase interaction followed by Bonferroni multiple comparison assays with a test strength of at least 0.8 on the probability level p < 0.05. In the paper results of the first-year investigation of the three years running project are analysed. Results of balance tests confirmed no significant difference between females and males in pre-test. Significant improvements in balance and walking ability were observed in experimental group in females comparing to males (F = 128.4, p < 0.001). In the females control group, there was no significant change in post- test, while in the female experimental group positive changes in posture and spine flexibility in post-tests were found. It seems that females even in senior age react better to incentives of intervention in balance and spine flexibility. On the base of results analyses, we can declare the significant improvement in social balance markers after intervention in the experimental group (F = 10.5, p < 0.001). In average, seniors are used to take four drugs daily. Number of drugs can contribute to allergy symptoms and balance problems. It can be concluded that static balance and walking ability of seniors according Tinetti Balance scale correlate significantly with psychic and social monitored markers.

Keywords: Exercises, balance, seniors 65+, health, mental and social balance.

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336 MHD Natural Convection Flow of Tangent Hyperbolic Nanofluid Past a Vertical Permeable Cone

Authors: A. Mahdy

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In this paper, a non-similraity analysis has been presented to exhibit the two-dimensional boundary layer flow of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) natural convection of tangent hyperbolic nanofluid nearby a vertical permeable cone in the presence of variable wall temperature impact. The mutated boundary layer nonlinear governing equations are solved numerically by the an efficient implicit finite difference procedure. For both nanofluid effective viscosity and nanofluid thermal conductivity, a number of experimental relations have been recognized. For characterizing the nanofluid, the compatible nanoparticle volume fraction model has been used. Nusselt number and skin friction coefficient are calculated for some values of Weissenberg number W, surface temperature exponent n, magnetic field parameter Mg, power law index m and Prandtl number Pr as functions of suction parameter. The rate of heat transfer from a vertical permeable cone in a regular fluid is less than that in nanofluids. A best convection has been presented by Copper nanoparticle among all the used nanoparticles.

Keywords: Tangent hyperbolic nanofluid, finite difference, non-similarity, isothermal cone.

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335 The Mouth and Gastrointestinal Tract of the African Lung Fish Protopterus annectens in River Niger at Agenebode, Nigeria

Authors: Marian Agbugui

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The West African Lung fishes are fishes rich in protein and serve as an important source of food supply for man. The kind of food ingested by this group of fishes is dependent on the alimentary canal as well as the fish’s digestive processes which provide suitable modifications for maximum utilization of food taken. A study of the alimentary canal of P. annectens will expose the best information on the anatomy and histology of the fish. Samples of P. annectens were dissected to reveal the liver, pancreas and entire gut wall. Digital pictures of the mouth, jaws and the Gastrointestinal Tract (GIT) were taken. The entire gut was identified, sectioned and micro graphed. P. annectens was observed to possess a terminal mouth that opens up to 10% of its total body length, an adaptive feature to enable the fish to swallow the whole of its pry. Its dentition is made up of incisors- scissor-like teeth which also help to firmly grip, seize and tear through the skin of prey before swallowing. A short, straight and longitudinal GIT was observed in P. annectens which is known to be common feature in lungfishes, though it is thought to be a primitive characteristic similar to the lamprey. The oesophagus is short and distensible similar to other predatory and carnivorous species. Food is temporarily stored in the stomach before it is passed down into the intestine. A pyloric aperture is seen at the end of the double folded pyloric valve which leads into an intestine that makes up 75% of the whole GIT. The intestine begins at the posterior end of the pyloric aperture and winds down in six coils through the whole length intestine and ends at the cloaca. From this study it is concluded that P. annectens possess a composite GIT with organs similar to other lung fishes; it is a detritor with carnivorous abilities.

Keywords: Gastrointestinal tract, incisors scissor-like teeth, intestine, mucus, Protopterus annectens, serosa.

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334 The Impact of Protein Content on Athletes’ Body Composition

Authors: G. Vici, L. Cesanelli, L. Belli, R. Ceci, V. Polzonetti

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Several factors contribute to success in sport and diet is one of them. Evidence-based sport nutrition guidelines underline the importance of macro- and micro-nutrients’ balance and timing in order to improve athlete’s physical status and performance. Nevertheless, a high content of proteins is commonly found in resistance training athletes’ diet with carbohydrate intake that is not enough or not well planned. The aim of the study was to evaluate the impact of different protein and carbohydrate diet contents on body composition and sport performance on a group of resistance training athletes. Subjects were divided as study group (n=16) and control group (n=14). For a period of 4 months, both groups were subjected to the same resistance training fitness program with study group following a specific diet and control group following an ab libitum diet. Body compositions were evaluated trough anthropometric measurement (weight, height, body circumferences and skinfolds) and Bioimpedence Analysis. Physical strength and training status of individuals were evaluated through the One Repetition Maximum test (RM1). Protein intake in studied group was found to be lower than in control group. There was a statistically significant increase of body weight, free fat mass and body mass cell of studied group respect to the control group. Fat mass remains almost constant. Statistically significant changes were observed in quadriceps and biceps circumferences, with an increase in studied group. The MR1 test showed improvement in study group’s strength but no changes in control group. Usually people consume hyper-proteic diet to achieve muscle mass development. Through this study, it was possible to show that protein intake fixed at 1,7 g/kg/d can meet the individual's needs. In parallel, the increased intake of carbohydrates, focusing on quality and timing of assumption, has enabled the obtainment of desired results with a training protocol supporting a hypertrophic strategy. Therefore, the key point seems related to the planning of a structured program both from a nutritional and training point of view.

Keywords: Body composition, diet, exercise, protein.

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333 Study of Polyphenol Profile and Antioxidant Capacity in Italian Ancient Apple Varieties by Liquid Chromatography

Authors: A. M. Tarola, R. Preti, A. M. Girelli, P. Campana

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Safeguarding, studying and enhancing biodiversity play an important and indispensable role in re-launching agriculture. The ancient local varieties are therefore a precious resource for genetic and health improvement. In order to protect biodiversity through the recovery and valorization of autochthonous varieties, in this study we analyzed 12 samples of four ancient apple cultivars representative of Friuli Venezia Giulia, selected by local farmers who work on a project for the recovery of ancient apple cultivars. The aim of this study is to evaluate the polyphenolic profile and the antioxidant capacity that characterize the organoleptic and functional qualities of this fruit species, besides having beneficial properties for health. In particular, for each variety, the following compounds were analyzed, both in the skins and in the pulp: gallic acid, catechin, chlorogenic acid, epicatechin, caffeic acid, coumaric acid, ferulic acid, rutin, phlorizin, phloretin and quercetin to highlight any differences in the edible parts of the apple. The analysis of individual phenolic compounds was performed by High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) coupled with a diode array UV detector (DAD), the antioxidant capacity was estimated using an in vitro essay based on a Free Radical Scavenging Method and the total phenolic compounds was determined using the Folin-Ciocalteau method. From the results, it is evident that the catechins are the most present polyphenols, reaching a value of 140-200 μg/g in the pulp and of 400-500 μg/g in the skin, with the prevalence of epicatechin. Catechins and phlorizin, a dihydrohalcone typical of apples, are always contained in larger quantities in the peel. Total phenolic compounds content was positively correlated with antioxidant activity in apple pulp (r2 = 0,850) and peel (r2 = 0,820). Comparing the results, differences between the varieties analyzed and between the edible parts (pulp and peel) of the apple were highlighted. In particular, apple peel is richer in polyphenolic compounds than pulp and flavonols are exclusively present in the peel. In conclusion, polyphenols, being antioxidant substances, have confirmed the benefits of fruit in the diet, especially as a prevention and treatment for degenerative diseases. They demonstrated to be also a good marker for the characterization of different apple cultivars. The importance of protecting biodiversity in agriculture was also highlighted through the exploitation of native products and ancient varieties of apples now forgotten.

Keywords: Apple, biodiversity, polyphenols, antioxidant activity, HPLC-DAD, characterization.

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332 Pre-Operative Tool for Facial-Post-Surgical Estimation and Detection

Authors: Ayat E. Ali, Christeen R. Aziz, Merna A. Helmy, Mohammed M. Malek, Sherif H. El-Gohary

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Goal: Purpose of the project was to make a plastic surgery prediction by using pre-operative images for the plastic surgeries’ patients and to show this prediction on a screen to compare between the current case and the appearance after the surgery. Methods: To this aim, we implemented a software which used data from the internet for facial skin diseases, skin burns, pre-and post-images for plastic surgeries then the post- surgical prediction is done by using K-nearest neighbor (KNN). So we designed and fabricated a smart mirror divided into two parts a screen and a reflective mirror so patient's pre- and post-appearance will be showed at the same time. Results: We worked on some skin diseases like vitiligo, skin burns and wrinkles. We classified the three degrees of burns using KNN classifier with accuracy 60%. We also succeeded in segmenting the area of vitiligo. Our future work will include working on more skin diseases, classify them and give a prediction for the look after the surgery. Also we will go deeper into facial deformities and plastic surgeries like nose reshaping and face slim down. Conclusion: Our project will give a prediction relates strongly to the real look after surgery and decrease different diagnoses among doctors. Significance: The mirror may have broad societal appeal as it will make the distance between patient's satisfaction and the medical standards smaller.

Keywords: K-nearest neighbor, face detection, vitiligo, bone deformity.

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331 Perspectives on Sustainable Bioeconomy in the Baltic Sea Region

Authors: Susanna Vanhamäki, Gabor Schneider, Kati Manskinen

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‘Bioeconomy’ is a complex concept that cuts across many sectors and covers several policy areas. To achieve an overall understanding and support a successful bioeconomy, a cross-sectorial approach is necessary. In practice, due to the concept’s wide scope and varying international approaches, fully understanding bioeconomy is challenging on policy level. This paper provides a background of the topic through an analysis of bioeconomy strategies in the Baltic Sea region. Expert interviews and a small survey were conducted to discover the current and intended focuses of these countries’ bioeconomy sectors. The research shows that supporting sustainability is one of the keys in developing the future bioeconomy. The results highlighted that the bioeconomy has to be sustainable and based on circular economy principles. Currently, traditional bioeconomy sectors like food, wood, fish & waters as well as fuel & energy, which are in the core of national bioeconomy strategies, are best known and are considered more relevant than other bioeconomy industries. However, there is increasing potential for novel sectors, such as textiles and pharmaceuticals. The present research indicates that the opportunities presented by these bioeconomy sectors should be recognised and promoted. Education, research and innovation can play key roles in developing transformative and sustainable improvements in primary production and renewable resources. Furthermore, cooperation between businesses and educators is important.

Keywords: Bioeconomy, circular economy, policy, strategy.

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330 Self-Care Behavior and Performance Level Associated with Algerian Chronically Ill Patients

Authors: S. Aberkane, N. Djabali, S. Fafi, A. Baghezza

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Chronic illnesses affect many Algerians. It is possible to investigate the impact of illness representations and coping on quality of life and whether illness representations are indirectly associated with quality of life through their influence on coping. This study aims at investigating the relationship between illness perception, coping strategies and quality of life with chronic illness. Illness perceptions are indirectly associated with the quality of life through their influence on coping mediation. A sample of 316 participants with chronic illness living in the region of Batna, Algeria, has been adopted in this study. A correlation statistical analysis is used to determine the relationship between illness perception, coping strategies, and quality of life. Multiple regression analysis was employed to highlight the predictive ability of the dimensions of illness perception and coping strategies on the dependent variables of quality of life, where mediation analysis is considered in the exploration of the indirect effect significance of the mediator. This study provides insights about the relationship between illness perception, coping strategies and quality of life in the considered sample (r = 0.39, p < 0.01). Therefore, it proves that there is an effect of illness identity perception, external and medical attributions related to emotional role, physical functioning, and mental health perceived, and these were fully mediated by the asking for assistance (c’= 0.04, p < 0.05), the guarding (c’= 0.00, p < 0.05), and the task persistence strategy (c’= 0.05, p < 0.05). The findings imply partial support for the common-sense model of illness representations in a chronic illness population. Directions for future research are highlighted, as well as implications for psychotherapeutic interventions which target unhelpful beliefs and maladaptive coping strategies (e.g., cognitive behavioral therapy).

Keywords: Chronic illness, coping, illness perception, quality of life, self-regulation model.

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329 Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer in Ha’il Region in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: A Clinicopathological Study

Authors: Laila Seada, Nouf Al Gharbi, Shaimaa Dawa

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Although skin cancers are prevalent worldwide, it is uncommon in Ha’il region in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, mostly non-melanoma sub-type. During a 4-year period from 2014 to 2017, out of a total of 120 cases of skin lesions, 29 non-melanoma cancers were retrieved from histopathology files obtained from King Khalid Hospital. As part of the study, all cases of skin cancer diagnosed during 2014 -2017 have been revised and the clinicopathological data recorded. The results show that Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) was the most common neoplasm (36%), followed by cutaneous lymphomas (mostly mycosis fungoides 25%), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) (21%) and dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP) (11%). Only one case of metastatic carcinoma was recorded. BCC nodular type was the most prevalent, with a mean age 57.6 years and mean size 2.73 cm. SCC was mostly grade 2, with mean size 1.9 cm and an older mean age of 72.3 cm. Increased size of lesion positively correlated with older age (p = 0.001). Non-melanoma skin cancer in Ha’il region is not frequently encountered. BCC is the most frequent followed by cutaneous T-cell lymphomas and SCC. The findings in this study were in accordance with other parts of, but much lower than other parts of the world.

Keywords: Non melanoma skin cancer, Hail Region, histopathology, BCC.

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328 Zinc Adsorption Determination of H2SO4 Activated Pomegranate Peel

Authors: S. N. Turkmen Koc, A. S. Kipcak, M. B. Piskin, E. Moroydor Derun, N. Tugrul

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Active carbon can be obtained from agricultural sources. Due to the high surface area, the production of activated carbon from cheap resources is very important. Since the surface area of 1 g activated carbon is approximately between 300 and 2000 m2, it can be used to remove both organic and inorganic impurities. In this study, the adsorption of Zn metal was studied with the product of activated carbon, which is obtained from pomegranate peel by microwave and chemical activation methods. The microwave process of pomegranate peel was carried out under constant microwave power of 800 W and 1 to 4 minutes. After the microwave process, samples were treated with H2SO4 for 3 h. Then prepared product was used in synthetic waste water including 40 ppm Zn metal. As a result, removal of waste Zn in waste water ranged from 91% to 93%.

Keywords: Activated carbon, chemical activation, H2SO4, microwave, pomegranate peel.

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327 Structural Analysis of an Active Morphing Wing for Enhancing UAV Performance

Authors: E. Kaygan, A. Gatto

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A numerical study of a design concept for actively controlling wing twist is described in this paper. The concept consists of morphing elements which were designed to provide a rigid and seamless skin while maintaining structural rigidity. The wing structure is first modeled in CATIA V5 then imported into ANSYS for structural analysis. Athena Vortex Lattice method (AVL) is used to estimate aerodynamic response as well as aerodynamic loads of morphing wings, afterwards a structural optimization performed via ANSYS Static. Overall, the results presented in this paper show that the concept provides efficient wing twist while preserving an aerodynamically smooth and compliant surface. Sufficient structural rigidity in bending is also obtained. This concept is suggested as a possible alternative for morphing skin applications. 

Keywords: Aircraft, morphing, skin, twist.

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326 Estimation of the Parameters of Muskingum Methods for the Prediction of the Flood Depth in the Moudjar River Catchment

Authors: Fares Laouacheria, Said Kechida, Moncef Chabi

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The objective of the study was based on the hydrological routing modelling for the continuous monitoring of the hydrological situation in the Moudjar river catchment, especially during floods with Hydrologic Engineering Center–Hydrologic Modelling Systems (HEC-HMS). The HEC-GeoHMS was used to transform data from geographic information system (GIS) to HEC-HMS for delineating and modelling the catchment river in order to estimate the runoff volume, which is used as inputs to the hydrological routing model. Two hydrological routing models were used, namely Muskingum and Muskingum routing models, for conducting this study. In this study, a comparison between the parameters of the Muskingum and Muskingum-Cunge routing models in HEC-HMS was used for modelling flood routing in the Moudjar river catchment and determining the relationship between these parameters and the physical characteristics of the river. The results indicate that the effects of input parameters such as the weighting factor "X" and travel time "K" on the output results are more significant, where the Muskingum routing model was more sensitive to input parameters than the Muskingum-Cunge routing model. This study can contribute to understand and improve the knowledge of the mechanisms of river floods, especially in ungauged river catchments.

Keywords: HEC-HMS, hydrological modelling, Muskingum routing model, Muskingum-Cunge routing model.

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325 An Inflatable and Foldable Knee Exosuit Based on Intelligent Management of Biomechanical Energy

Authors: Jing Fang, Yao Cui, Mingming Wang, Shengli She, Jianping Yuan

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Wearable robotics is a potential solution in aiding gait rehabilitation of lower limbs dyskinesia patients, such as knee osteoarthritis or stroke afflicted patients. Many wearable robots have been developed in the form of rigid exoskeletons, but their bulk devices, high cost and control complexity hinder their popularity in the field of gait rehabilitation. Thus, the development of a portable, compliant and low-cost wearable robot for gait rehabilitation is necessary. Inspired by Chinese traditional folding fans and balloon inflators, the authors present an inflatable, foldable and variable stiffness knee exosuit (IFVSKE) in this paper. The pneumatic actuator of IFVSKE was fabricated in the shape of folding fans by using thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) fabric materials. The geometric and mechanical properties of IFVSKE were characterized with experimental methods. To assist the knee joint smartly, an intelligent control profile for IFVSKE was proposed based on the concept of full-cycle energy management of the biomechanical energy during human movement. The biomechanical energy of knee joints in a walking gait cycle of patients could be collected and released to assist the joint motion just by adjusting the inner pressure of IFVSKE. Finally, a healthy subject was involved to walk with and without the IFVSKE to evaluate the assisting effects.

Keywords: Biomechanical energy management, gait rehabilitation, knee exosuit, wearable robotics.

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324 Implicit Responses for Assessment of Autism Based on Natural Behaviors Obtained Inside Immersive Virtual Environment

Authors: E. Olmos-Raya, A. Cascales Martínez, N. Minto de Sousa, M. Alcañiz Raya

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The late detection and subjectivity of the assessment of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) imposed a difficulty for the children’s clinical and familiar environment. The results showed in this paper, are part of a research project about the assessment and training of social skills in children with ASD, whose overall goal is the use of virtual environments together with physiological measures in order to find a new model of objective ASD assessment based on implicit brain processes measures. In particular, this work tries to contribute by studying the differences and changes in the Skin Conductance Response (SCR) and Eye Tracking (ET) between a typical development group (TD group) and an ASD group (ASD group) after several combined stimuli using a low cost Immersive Virtual Environment (IVE). Subjects were exposed to a virtual environment that showed natural scenes that stimulated visual, auditory and olfactory perceptual system. By exposing them to the IVE, subjects showed natural behaviors while measuring SCR and ET. This study compared measures of subjects diagnosed with ASD (N = 18) with a control group of subjects with typical development (N=10) when exposed to three different conditions: only visual (V), visual and auditory (VA) and visual, auditory and olfactory (VAO) stimulation. Correlations between SCR and ET measures were also correlated with the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) test. SCR measures showed significant differences among the experimental condition between groups. The ASD group presented higher level of SCR while we did not find significant differences between groups regarding DF. We found high significant correlations among all the experimental conditions in SCR measures and the subscale of ADOS test of imagination and symbolic thinking. Regarding the correlation between ET measures and ADOS test, the results showed significant relationship between VA condition and communication scores.

Keywords: Autism, electrodermal activity, eye tracking, immersive virtual environment, virtual reality.

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323 Reviewing the Relation of Language and Minorities' Rights

Authors: Mohsen Davarzani, Ehsan Lame, Mohammad Taghi Hassan Zadeh

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Language is considered as a powerful and outstanding feature of ethnicity. However, humiliating and prohibiting using human language is one the most heinous and brutal acts in the form of racism. In other words, racism can be a product of physiological humiliations and discrimination, such as skin color, and can also be resulted from ethnic humiliation and discrimination such as language, customs and so on. Ethnic and racial discrimination is one of the main problems of the world that minorities and occasionally the majority have suffered from. Nowadays, few states can be found in which all individuals and its citizens are of the same race and ethnicity, culture and language. In these countries, referred to as the multinational states, (eg, Iran, Switzerland, India, etc.), there are the communities and groups which have their own linguistic, cultural and historical characteristics. Characteristics of human rights issues, diversity of issues and plurality of meanings indicate that they appear in various aspects. The states are obliged to respect, as per national and international obligations, the rights of all citizens from different angles, especially different groups that require special attention in order of the particular aspects such as ethnicity, religious and political minorities, children, women, workers, unions and in case the states are in breach of any of these items, they are faced with challenges in local, regional or international fields.

Keywords: Law, language, minorities, ethnicity.

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322 Numerical Approach to a Mathematical Modeling of Bioconvection Due to Gyrotactic Micro-Organisms over a Nonlinear Inclined Stretching Sheet

Authors: Madhu Aneja, Sapna Sharma

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The water-based bioconvection of a nanofluid containing motile gyrotactic micro-organisms over nonlinear inclined stretching sheet has been investigated. The governing nonlinear boundary layer equations of the model are reduced to a system of ordinary differential equations via Oberbeck-Boussinesq approximation and similarity transformations. Further, the modified set of equations with associated boundary conditions are solved using Finite Element Method. The impact of various pertinent parameters on the velocity, temperature, nanoparticles concentration, density of motile micro-organisms profiles are obtained and analyzed in details. The results show that with the increase in angle of inclination δ, velocity decreases while temperature, nanoparticles concentration, a density of motile micro-organisms increases. Additionally, the skin friction coefficient, Nusselt number, Sherwood number, density number are computed for various thermophysical parameters. It is noticed that increasing Brownian motion and thermophoresis parameter leads to an increase in temperature of fluid which results in a reduction in Nusselt number. On the contrary, Sherwood number rises with an increase in Brownian motion and thermophoresis parameter. The findings have been validated by comparing the results of special cases with existing studies.

Keywords: Bioconvection, inclined stretching sheet, Gyrotactic micro-organisms, Brownian motion, thermophoresis, finite element method.

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321 Carcass Characteristics and Qualities of Philippine White Mallard (Anas boschas L.) and Pekin (Anas platyrhynchos L.) Duck

Authors: Jerico M. Consolacion, Maria Cynthia R. Oliveros

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The Philippine White Mallard duck was compared with Pekin duck for potential meat production. A total of 50 ducklings were randomly assigned to five (5) pens per treatment after one month of brooding. Each pen containing five (5) ducks was considered as a replicate. The ducks were raised until 12 weeks of age and slaughtered at the end of the growing period. Meat from both breeds was analyzed. The data were subjected to the Independent-Sample T-test at 5% level of confidence. Results showed that post-mortem pH (0, 20 minutes, 50 minutes, 1 hour and 20 minutes, 1 hour and 50 minutes, and 24 hours ) did not differ significantly (P>0.05) between breeds. However, Pekin ducks (89.84±0.71) had a significantly higher water-holding capacity than Philippine White Mallard ducks (87.93±0.63) (P<0.05). Also, meat color (CIE L, a, b) revealed that no significant differences among the lightness, redness, and yellowness of the skin (breast) in both breeds (P>0.05) except for the yellowness of the lean muscles of the Pekin duck breast. Pekin duck meat (1.15±0.04) had significantly higher crude fat content than Philippine White Mallard (0.47±0.58). The study clearly showed that breed is a factor and provided some pronounced effects among the parameters. However, these results are considered as preliminary information on the meat quality of Philippine White Mallard duck. Hence, further studies are needed to understand and fully utilize it for meat production and develop different meat products from this breed.

Keywords: Crude fat, meat quality, water-holding capacity.

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320 Physical Activity and Cognitive Functioning Relationship in Children

Authors: Comfort Mokgothu

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This study investigated the relation between processing information and fitness level of active (fit) and sedentary (unfit) children drawn from rural and urban areas in Botswana. It was hypothesized that fit children would display faster simple reaction time (SRT), choice reaction times (CRT) and movement times (SMT). 60, third grade children (7.0 – 9.0 years) were initially selected and based upon fitness testing, 45 participated in the study (15 each of fit urban, unfit urban, fit rural). All children completed anthropometric measures, skinfold testing and submaximal cycle ergometer testing. The cognitive testing included SRT, CRT, SMT and Choice Movement Time (CMT) and memory sequence length. Results indicated that the rural fit group exhibited faster SMT than the urban fit and unfit groups. For CRT, both fit groups were faster than the unfit group. Collectively, the study shows that the relationship that exists between physical fitness and cognitive function amongst the elderly can tentatively be extended to the pediatric population. Physical fitness could be a factor in the speed at which we process information, including decision making, even in children.

Keywords: Decision making, fitness, information processing, reaction time, cognition movement time.

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319 Teaching Turn-Taking Rules and Pragmatic Principles to Empower EFL Students and Enhance Their Learning in Speaking Modules

Authors: O. F. Elkommos

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Teaching and learning EFL speaking modules is one of the most challenging productive modules for both instructors and learners. In a student-centered interactive communicative language teaching approach, learners and instructors should be aware of the fact that the target language must be taught as/for communication. The student must be empowered by tools that will work on more than one level of their communicative competence. Communicative learning will need a teaching and learning methodology that will address the goal. Teaching turn-taking rules, pragmatic principles and speech acts will enhance students' sociolinguistic competence, strategic competence together with discourse competence. Sociolinguistic competence entails the mastering of speech act conventions and illocutionary acts of refusing, agreeing/disagreeing; emotive acts like, thanking, apologizing, inviting, offering; directives like, ordering, requesting, advising, and hinting, among others. Strategic competence includes enlightening students’ consciousness of the various particular turn-taking systemic rules of organizing techniques of opening and closing conversation, adjacency pairs, interrupting, back-channeling, asking for/giving opinion, agreeing/disagreeing, using natural fillers for pauses, gaps, speaker select, self-select, and silence among others. Students will have the tools to manage a conversation. Students are engaged in opportunities of experiencing the natural language not as a mere extra student talking time but rather an empowerment of knowing and using the strategies. They will have the component items they need to use as well as the opportunity to communicate in the target language using topics of their interest and choice. This enhances students' communicative abilities. Available websites and textbooks now use one or more of these tools of turn-taking or pragmatics. These will be students' support in self-study in their independent learning study hours. This will be their reinforcement practice on e-Learning interactive activities. The students' target is to be able to communicate the intended meaning to an addressee that is in turn able to infer that intended meaning. The combination of these tools will be assertive and encouraging to the student to beat the struggle with what to say, how to say it, and when to say it. Teaching the rules, principles and techniques is an act of awareness raising method engaging students in activities that will lead to their pragmatic discourse competence. The aim of the paper is to show how the suggested pragmatic model will empower students with tools and systems that would support their learning. Supporting students with turn taking rules, speech act theory, applying both to texts and practical analysis and using it in speaking classes empowers students’ pragmatic discourse competence and assists them to understand language and its context. They become more spontaneous and ready to learn the discourse pragmatic dimension of the speaking techniques and suitable content. Students showed a better performance and a good motivation to learn. The model is therefore suggested for speaking modules in EFL classes.

Keywords: Communicative competence, EFL, empowering learners, enhance learning, speech acts, teaching speaking, turn-taking, learner centered, pragmatics.

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318 Guidelines for Sustainable Urban Mobility in Historic Districts from International Experiences

Authors: Tamer ElSerafi

Abstract:

In recent approaches to heritage conservation, the whole context of historic areas becomes as important as the single historic building. This makes the provision of infrastructure and network of mobility an effective element in the urban conservation. Sustainable urban conservation projects consider the high density of activities, the need for a good quality access system to the transit system, and the importance of the configuration of the mobility network by identifying the best way to connect the different districts of the urban area through a complex unique system that helps the synergic development to achieve a sustainable mobility system. A sustainable urban mobility is a key factor in maintaining the integrity between socio-cultural aspects and functional aspects. This paper illustrates the mobility aspects, mobility problems in historic districts, and the needs of the mobility systems in the first part. The second part is a practical analysis for different mobility plans. It is challenging to find innovative and creative conservation solutions fitting modern uses and needs without risking the loss of inherited built resources. Urban mobility management is becoming an essential and challenging issue in the urban conservation projects. Depending on literature review and practical analysis, this paper tries to define and clarify the guidelines for mobility management in historic districts as a key element in sustainability of urban conservation and development projects. Such rules and principles could control the conflict between the socio–cultural and economic activities, and the different needs for mobility in these districts in a sustainable way. The practical analysis includes a comparison between mobility plans which have been implemented in four different cities; Freiburg in Germany, Zurich in Switzerland and Bray Town in Ireland. This paper concludes with a matrix of guidelines that considers both principles of sustainability and livability factors in urban historic districts.

Keywords: Sustainable mobility, urban mobility, mobility management, historic districts.

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317 Alternative Acidizing Fluids and Their Impact on the Southern Algerian Shale Formations

Authors: Rezki Akkal, Mohamed Khodja, Slimane Azzi

Abstract:

Acidification is a technique used in oil reservoirs to improve annual production, reduce the skin and increase the pressure of an oil well while eliminating the formation damage that occurs during the drilling process, completion and, amongst others, to create new channels allowing the easy circulation of oil around a producing well. This is achieved by injecting an acidizing fluid at a relatively low pressure to prevent fracturing formation. The treatment fluid used depends on the type and nature of the reservoir rock traversed as well as its petrophysical properties. In order to understand the interaction mechanisms between the treatment fluids used for the reservoir rock acidizing, several candidate wells for stimulation were selected in the large Hassi Messaoud deposit in southern Algeria. The stimulation of these wells is completed using different fluids composed mainly of HCl acid with other additives such as corrosion inhibitors, clay stabilizers and iron controllers. These treatment fluids are injected over two phases, namely with clean tube (7.5% HCl) and matrix aidizing with HCl (15%). The stimulation results obtained are variable according to the type of rock traversed and its mineralogical composition. These results show that there has been an increase in production flow and head pressure respectively from 1.99 m3 / h to 3.56 m3 / h and from 13 Kgf / cm2 to 20 kgf / cm2 in the sands formation having good petrophysical properties of (porosity = 16%) and low amount of clay (Vsh = 6%).

Keywords: Acidizing, Hassi-Messaoud reservoir, tube clean, matrix stimulation.

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316 Hand Gesture Detection via EmguCV Canny Pruning

Authors: N. N. Mosola, S. J. Molete, L. S. Masoebe, M. Letsae

Abstract:

Hand gesture recognition is a technique used to locate, detect, and recognize a hand gesture. Detection and recognition are concepts of Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI concepts are applicable in Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Expert systems (ES), etc. Hand gesture recognition can be used in sign language interpretation. Sign language is a visual communication tool. This tool is used mostly by deaf societies and those with speech disorder. Communication barriers exist when societies with speech disorder interact with others. This research aims to build a hand recognition system for Lesotho’s Sesotho and English language interpretation. The system will help to bridge the communication problems encountered by the mentioned societies. The system has various processing modules. The modules consist of a hand detection engine, image processing engine, feature extraction, and sign recognition. Detection is a process of identifying an object. The proposed system uses Canny pruning Haar and Haarcascade detection algorithms. Canny pruning implements the Canny edge detection. This is an optimal image processing algorithm. It is used to detect edges of an object. The system employs a skin detection algorithm. The skin detection performs background subtraction, computes the convex hull, and the centroid to assist in the detection process. Recognition is a process of gesture classification. Template matching classifies each hand gesture in real-time. The system was tested using various experiments. The results obtained show that time, distance, and light are factors that affect the rate of detection and ultimately recognition. Detection rate is directly proportional to the distance of the hand from the camera. Different lighting conditions were considered. The more the light intensity, the faster the detection rate. Based on the results obtained from this research, the applied methodologies are efficient and provide a plausible solution towards a light-weight, inexpensive system which can be used for sign language interpretation.

Keywords: Canny pruning, hand recognition, machine learning, skin tracking.

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315 Architectural and Structural Analysis of Selected Tall Buildings in Warsaw, Poland

Authors: J. Szolomicki, H. Golasz-Szolomicka

Abstract:

This paper presents elements of architectural and structural analysis of selected high-rise buildings in the Polish capital city of Warsaw. When analyzing the architecture of Warsaw, it can be concluded that it is currently a rapidly growing city with technologically advanced skyscrapers that belong to the category of intelligent buildings. The constructional boom over the last dozen years has seen the erection of postmodern skyscrapers for office and residential use. This article focuses on how Warsaw has recently joined the most architecturally interesting cities in Europe. Warsaw is currently in fifth place in Europe in terms of the number of skyscrapers and is considered the second most preferred city in Europe (after London) for investment related to them. However, the architectural development of the city could not take place without the participation of eminent Polish and foreign architects such as Stefan Kuryłowicz, Lary Oltmans, Helmut Jahn or Daniel Libeskind.

Keywords: Core structure, raft foundation, tall buildings.

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314 Procedure to Use Quantitative Bone-Specific SPECT/CT in North Karelia Central Hospital

Authors: L. Korpinen, P. Taskinen, P. Rautio

Abstract:

This study aimed to describe procedures that we developed to use in the quantitative, bone-specific SPECT/CT at our hospital. Our procedures included the following questions for choosing imaging protocols, which were based on a clinical doctor's referral: (1) Is she/he a cancer patient or not? (2) Are there any indications of inflammatory rheumatoid arthritis? We performed about 1,106 skeletal scintigraphies over two years. About 394 patients were studied with quantitative bone-specific single-photon emission computed tomography/computerized tomography (SPECT/CT) (i.e., about 36% of all bone scintigraphies). Approximately 64% of the patients were studied using the conventional Anterior-Posterior/Posterior-Anterior imaging. Our procedure has improved efficiency and decreased cycle times.

Keywords: Skeletal scintigraphy, SPECT/CT, imaging.

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313 Similarity Solutions of Nonlinear Stretched Biomagnetic Flow and Heat Transfer with Signum Function and Temperature Power Law Geometries

Authors: M. G. Murtaza, E. E. Tzirtzilakis, M. Ferdows

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Biomagnetic fluid dynamics is an interdisciplinary field comprising engineering, medicine, and biology. Bio fluid dynamics is directed towards finding and developing the solutions to some of the human body related diseases and disorders. This article describes the flow and heat transfer of two dimensional, steady, laminar, viscous and incompressible biomagnetic fluid over a non-linear stretching sheet in the presence of magnetic dipole. Our model is consistent with blood fluid namely biomagnetic fluid dynamics (BFD). This model based on the principles of ferrohydrodynamic (FHD). The temperature at the stretching surface is assumed to follow a power law variation, and stretching velocity is assumed to have a nonlinear form with signum function or sign function. The governing boundary layer equations with boundary conditions are simplified to couple higher order equations using usual transformations. Numerical solutions for the governing momentum and energy equations are obtained by efficient numerical techniques based on the common finite difference method with central differencing, on a tridiagonal matrix manipulation and on an iterative procedure. Computations are performed for a wide range of the governing parameters such as magnetic field parameter, power law exponent temperature parameter, and other involved parameters and the effect of these parameters on the velocity and temperature field is presented. It is observed that for different values of the magnetic parameter, the velocity distribution decreases while temperature distribution increases. Besides, the finite difference solutions results for skin-friction coefficient and rate of heat transfer are discussed. This study will have an important bearing on a high targeting efficiency, a high magnetic field is required in the targeted body compartment.

Keywords: Biomagnetic fluid, FHD, nonlinear stretching sheet, slip parameter.

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312 A Note on MHD Flow and Heat Transfer over a Curved Stretching Sheet by Considering Variable Thermal Conductivity

Authors: M. G. Murtaza, E. E. Tzirtzilakis, M. Ferdows

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The mixed convective flow of MHD incompressible, steady boundary layer in heat transfer over a curved stretching sheet due to temperature dependent thermal conductivity is studied. We use curvilinear coordinate system in order to describe the governing flow equations. Finite difference solutions with central differencing have been used to solve the transform governing equations. Numerical results for the flow velocity and temperature profiles are presented as a function of the non-dimensional curvature radius. Skin friction coefficient and local Nusselt number at the surface of the curved sheet are discussed as well.

Keywords: Curved stretching sheet, finite difference method, MHD, variable thermal conductivity.

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311 Numerical Simulation of Lightning Strike Direct Effects on Aircraft Skin Composite Laminate

Authors: Muhammad Khalil, Nader Abuelfoutouh, Gasser Abdelal, Adrian Murphy

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Nowadays, the direct effects of lightning to aircrafts are of great importance because of the massive use of composite materials. In comparison with metallic materials, composites present several weaknesses for lightning strike direct effects. Especially, their low electrical and thermal conductivities lead to severe lightning strike damage. The lightning strike direct effects are burning, heating, magnetic force, sparking and arcing. As the problem is complex, we investigated it gradually. A magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) model is developed to simulate the lightning strikes in order to estimate the damages on the composite materials. Then, a coupled thermal-electrical finite element analysis is used to study the interaction between the lightning arc and the composite laminate and to investigate the material degradation.

Keywords: Composite structures, lightning multiphysics, magnetohydrodynamics, coupled thermal-electrical analysis, thermal plasmas.

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310 Speech Enhancement Using Wavelet Coefficients Masking with Local Binary Patterns

Authors: Christian Arcos, Marley Vellasco, Abraham Alcaim

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In this paper, we present a wavelet coefficients masking based on Local Binary Patterns (WLBP) approach to enhance the temporal spectra of the wavelet coefficients for speech enhancement. This technique exploits the wavelet denoising scheme, which splits the degraded speech into pyramidal subband components and extracts frequency information without losing temporal information. Speech enhancement in each high-frequency subband is performed by binary labels through the local binary pattern masking that encodes the ratio between the original value of each coefficient and the values of the neighbour coefficients. This approach enhances the high-frequency spectra of the wavelet transform instead of eliminating them through a threshold. A comparative analysis is carried out with conventional speech enhancement algorithms, demonstrating that the proposed technique achieves significant improvements in terms of PESQ, an international recommendation of objective measure for estimating subjective speech quality. Informal listening tests also show that the proposed method in an acoustic context improves the quality of speech, avoiding the annoying musical noise present in other speech enhancement techniques. Experimental results obtained with a DNN based speech recognizer in noisy environments corroborate the superiority of the proposed scheme in the robust speech recognition scenario.

Keywords: Binary labels, local binary patterns, mask, wavelet coefficients, speech enhancement, speech recognition.

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309 Contrast Enhancement in Digital Images Using an Adaptive Unsharp Masking Method

Authors: Z. Mortezaie, H. Hassanpour, S. Asadi Amiri

Abstract:

Captured images may suffer from Gaussian blur due to poor lens focus or camera motion. Unsharp masking is a simple and effective technique to boost the image contrast and to improve digital images suffering from Gaussian blur. The technique is based on sharpening object edges by appending the scaled high-frequency components of the image to the original. The quality of the enhanced image is highly dependent on the characteristics of both the high-frequency components and the scaling/gain factor. Since the quality of an image may not be the same throughout, we propose an adaptive unsharp masking method in this paper. In this method, the gain factor is computed, considering the gradient variations, for individual pixels of the image. Subjective and objective image quality assessments are used to compare the performance of the proposed method both with the classic and the recently developed unsharp masking methods. The experimental results show that the proposed method has a better performance in comparison to the other existing methods.

Keywords: Unsharp masking, blur image, sub-region gradient, image enhancement.

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308 Burnout Recognition for Call Center Agents by Using Skin Color Detection with Hand Poses

Authors: El Sayed A. Sharara, A. Tsuji, K. Terada

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Call centers have been expanding and they have influence on activation in various markets increasingly. A call center’s work is known as one of the most demanding and stressful jobs. In this paper, we propose the fatigue detection system in order to detect burnout of call center agents in the case of a neck pain and upper back pain. Our proposed system is based on the computer vision technique combined skin color detection with the Viola-Jones object detector. To recognize the gesture of hand poses caused by stress sign, the YCbCr color space is used to detect the skin color region including face and hand poses around the area related to neck ache and upper back pain. A cascade of clarifiers by Viola-Jones is used for face recognition to extract from the skin color region. The detection of hand poses is given by the evaluation of neck pain and upper back pain by using skin color detection and face recognition method. The system performance is evaluated using two groups of dataset created in the laboratory to simulate call center environment. Our call center agent burnout detection system has been implemented by using a web camera and has been processed by MATLAB. From the experimental results, our system achieved 96.3% for upper back pain detection and 94.2% for neck pain detection.

Keywords: Call center agents, fatigue, skin color detection, face recognition.

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