International Science Index

International Journal of Biomedical and Biological Engineering

Study of the Genotoxic Potential of Plant Growth Regulator Ethephon
Ethephon is one of the most widely used plant growth regulator in agriculture that its application has been increased in recent years. The toxicity of organophosphate compounds is mostly attributed to their potent inhibition of acetylcholinesterase and their involvement in neurodegenerative disease. Although there are few reports on butyrylcholinesterase inhibitory role of ethephon, still there is no evidence on neurotoxicity and genotoxicity of this compound. The aim of the current study is to assess the potential genotoxic effect of ethephon using two genotoxic endpoints; γH2AX expression and comet assay on embryonic murine fibroblast. γH2AX serves as an early and sensitive biomarker for evaluating the genotoxic effects of chemicals. Oxidative stress biomarkers, including intracellular reactive oxygen species, lipid peroxidation and antioxidant capacity were also examined. The results showed a significant increase in cell proliferation 24h post-treatment with 10, 40,160µg/ml ethephon. The γH2AX expression and γH2AX foci count per cell were increased at low concentration of ethephon that was concomitant with increased DNA damage break at 40 and 160 µg/ml as illustrated by increased comet tail moment. A significant increase in lipid peroxidation and ROS formation were observed at 160 µg/ml and higher doses. The results showed that low-dose of ethephon promoted cell proliferation while induce DNA damage, raising the possibility of ethephon mutagenicity. Ethephon-induced genotoxic effect of low dose might not related to oxidative damage. However, ethephon was found to increase oxidative stress at higher doses, lead to cellular cytotoxicity. Taken together, all data indicated that ethylene, deserves more attention as a plant regulator with potential genotoxicity for which appropriate control is needed to reduce its usage.
A Biomechanical Model for the Idiopathic Scoliosis Using the Antalgic-Trak Technology
The mathematical modelling of idiopathic scoliosis has been studied throughout the years. The models presented on those papers are based on the orthotic stabilization of the idiopathic scoliosis, which are based on a transversal force being applied to the human spine on a continuous form. When considering the ATT (Antalgic-Trak Technology) device, the existent models cannot be used, as the type of forces applied are no longer transversal nor applied in a continuous manner. In this device, vertical traction is applied. In this study we propose to model the idiopathic scoliosis, using the ATT (Antalgic-Trak Technology) device, and with the parameters obtained from the mathematical modeling, set up a case-by-case individualized therapy plan, for each patient.
Investigation of Threshold Voltage Shift in Gamma Irradiated N-Channel and P-Channel MOS Transistors of CD4007
The ionizing radiations cause different kinds of damages in electronic components. MOSFETs, most common transistors in today’s digital and analog circuits, are severely sensitive to TID damage. In this work, the threshold voltage shift of CD4007 device, which is an integrated circuit including P-channel and N-channel MOS transistors, was investigated for low dose gamma irradiation under different gate bias voltages. We used linear extrapolation method to extract threshold voltage from ID-VG characteristic curve. The results showed that the threshold voltage shift was approximately 27.5 mV/Gy for N-channel and 3.5 mV/Gy for P-channel transistors at the gate bias of |9 V| after irradiation by Co-60 gamma ray source. Although the sensitivity of the devices under test was strongly dependent to biasing condition and transistor type, the threshold voltage shifted linearly versus accumulated dose in all cases. The overall results show that the application of CD4007 as an electronic buffer in a radiation therapy system is limited by TID damage. However, this integrated circuit can be used as a cheap and sensitive radiation dosimeter for accumulated dose measurement in radiation therapy systems.
ARIMA-GARCH, a Statistical Modeling for Epileptic Seizure Prediction
In this paper, we provide a procedure to analyze and model EEG (electroencephalogram) signal as a time series using ARIMA-GARCH to predict an epileptic attack. The heteroskedasticity of EEG signal is examined through the ARCH or GARCH, (Autore- gressive conditional heteroskedasticity, Generalized autoregressive conditional heteroskedasticity) test. The best ARIMA-GARCH model in AIC sense is utilized to measure the volatility of the EEG from epileptic canine subjects, to forecast the future values of EEG. ARIMA-only model can perform prediction, but the ARCH or GARCH model acting on the residuals of ARIMA attains a con- siderable improved forecast horizon. First, we estimate the best ARIMA model, then different orders of ARCH and GARCH modelings are surveyed to determine the best heteroskedastic model of the residuals of the mentioned ARIMA. Using the simulated conditional variance of selected ARCH or GARCH model, we suggest the procedure to predict the oncoming seizures. The results indicate that GARCH modeling determines the dynamic changes of variance well before the onset of seizure. It can be inferred that the prediction capability comes from the ability of the combined ARIMA-GARCH modeling to cover the heteroskedastic nature of EEG signal changes.
Features Dimensionality Reduction and Multi-Dimensional Voice-Processing Program to Parkinson Disease Discrimination
Parkinson's disease is a pathology that involves characteristic perturbations in patients’ voices. This paper describes a proposed method that aims to diagnose persons with Parkinson (PWP) by analyzing on line their voices signals. First, Thresholds signals alterations are determined by the Multi-Dimensional Voice Program (MDVP). Principal Analysis (PCA) is exploited to select the main voice principal componentsthat are significantly affected in a patient. The decision phase is realized by a Mul-tinomial Bayes (MNB) Classifier that categorizes an analyzed voice in one of the two resulting classes: healthy or PWP. The prediction accuracy achieved reaching 98.8% is very promising.
Finite Element Analysis of Mini-Plate Stabilization of Mandible Fracture
The aim of the presented investigation is to recognize the possible mechanical issues of mini-plate connection used to treat mandible fractures and to check the impact of different factors for the stresses and displacements within the bone-stabilizer system. The mini-plate osteosynthesis technique is a common type of internal fixation using metal plates connected to the fractured bone parts by a set of screws. The selected two types of plate application methodology used by maxillofacial surgeons were investigated in the work. Those patterns differ in location and number of plates. The bone geometry was modeled on the base of computed tomography scans of hospitalized patient done just after mini-plate application. The solid volume geometry consisting of cortical and cancellous bone was created based on gained cloud of points. Temporomandibular joint and muscle system were simulated to imitate the real masticatory system behavior. Finite elements mesh and analysis were performed by ANSYS software. To simulate realistic connection behavior nonlinear contact conditions were used between the connecting elements and bones. The influence of the initial compression of the connected bone parts or the gap between them was analyzed. Nonlinear material properties of the bone tissues and elastic-plastic model of titanium alloy were used. The three cases of loading assuming the force of magnitude of 100N acting on the left molars, the right molars and the incisors were investigated. Stress distribution within connecting plate shows that the compression of the bone parts in the connection results in high stress concentration in the plate and the screws, however the maximum stress levels do not exceed material (titanium) yield limit. There are no significant differences between negative offset (gap) and no-offset conditions. The location of the external force influences the magnitude of stresses around both the plate and bone parts. Two-plate system gives generally lower von Misses stress under the same loading than the one-plating approach. Von Mises stress distribution within the cortical bone shows reduction of high stress field for the cases without the compression (neutral initial contact). For the initial prestressing there is a visible significant stress increase around the fixing holes at the bottom mini-plate due to the assembly stress. The local stress concentration may be the reason of bone destruction in those regions. The performed calculations prove that the bone-mini-plate system is able to properly stabilize the fractured mandible bone. There is visible strong dependency between the mini-plate location and stress distribution within the stabilizer structure and the surrounding bone tissue. The results (stresses within the bone tissues and within the devices, relative displacements of the bone parts at the interface) corresponding to different models of the connection provide a basis for the mechanical optimization of the mini-plate connections. The results of the performed numerical simulations were compared to clinical observation. They provide information helpful for better understanding of the load transfer in the mandible with the stabilizer and for improving stabilization techniques.
PostureCheck with the Kinect and Proficio: Posture Modeling for Exercise Assessment
Evaluation of a person’s posture while exercising is important in physical therapy. During a therapy session, a physical therapist or a monitoring system must assure that the person is performing an exercise correctly to achieve the desired therapeutic effect. In this work, we introduce a system called POSTURECHECK for exercise assessment in physical therapy. POSTURECHECK assesses the posture of a person who is exercising with the Proficio robotic arm while being recorded by the Microsoft Kinect interface. POSTURECHECK extracts unique features from the person’s upper body during the exercise, and classifies the sequence of postures as correct or incorrect using Bayesian estimation and majority voting. If POSTURECHECK recognizes an incorrect posture, it specifies what the user can do to correct it. The result of our experiment shows that POSTURECHECK is capable of recognizing the incorrect postures in real time while the user is performing an exercise.
IntelliCane: A Cane System for Individuals with Lower-Limb Mobility and Functional Impairments
The purpose of this research paper is to study and develop a system that is able to help identify problems and improve human rehabilitation after traumatic injuries. Traumatic injuries in human’s lower limbs can occur over lifetime and can have serious side effects if they are not treated correctly. In this paper, we developed an intelligent cane (IntelliCane) so as to help individuals in their rehabilitation process and provide feedback to the users. The first stage of the paper involves an analysis of the existing systems on the market and what can be improved. The second stage presents the design of the system. The third part, which is still under development is the validation of the system in real world setups with people in need. This paper presents mainly stages one and two.
Magni Dynamics: A Vision-Based Kinematic and Dynamic Upper-Limb Model for Intelligent Robotic Rehabilitation
This paper presents a vision-based kinematic and dynamic model that is used as a feedback system to a robotic arm. The system, called "MAGNI Dynamics," detects dangerous movements while the user is performing prescribed rehabilitation exercises and simulates the reaction torques in the humans' joints. It uses the Kinect skeleton tracker and the Barrett (WAM) Arm devices to monitor the user's effort and manage to adapt the level of resistance or assistance. Therapists will define the level of torque thresholds, and the robotic arm will challenge the user based on his exercise execution and the forces that are applied to the both ends (human arm, robot's end-effector). Moreover, the robotic arm is used as an elastic band with a variety of stiffness factor that is getting adapted based on the user's performances. Lastly, a simulation experiment is depicted to demonstrate the results of the system and potential areas for future research are discussed.
Developing Models for Predicting Physiological Impaired Arm Reaching Paths
This paper describes the development of a model of an impaired human arm, performing a reaching motion, which will be used to predict hand path trajectories for people with reduced arm joint mobility. Assuming that the arm was in contact with a surface during the entire movement, the contact conditions at the initial and final task locations were determined, and used to generate the entire trajectory. The model was validated by comparing it to experimental data, which simulated an arm joint impairment by physically constraining the joint motion with a brace. Future research will include using the model in the development of physical training protocols that avoid early recruitment of 'healthy' Degrees-Of-Freedom (DOF) for reaching motions, thus facilitating an Active Range-Of-Motion Recovery (AROM) for a particular impaired joint.
Design and Construction of a Home-Based, Patient-Led, Therapeutic, Post-Stroke Recovery System Using Iterative Learning Control
Stroke is a devastating illness that is the second biggest cause of death in the world (after heart disease). Where it does not kill, it leaves survivors with debilitating sensory and physical impairments that not only seriously harm their quality of life, but also cause a high incidence of severe depression. It is widely accepted that early intervention is essential for recovery, but current rehabilitation techniques largely favor hospital-based therapies which have restricted access, expensive and specialist equipment and tend to side-step the emotional challenges. In addition, there is insufficient funding available to provide the long-term assistance that is required. As a consequence, recovery rates are poor. The relatively unexplored solution is to develop therapies that can be harnessed in the home and are formulated from technologies that already exist in everyday life. This would empower individuals to take control of their own improvement and provide choice in terms of when and where they feel best able to undertake their own healing. This research seeks to identify how effective post-stroke, rehabilitation therapy can be applied to upper limb mobility, within the physical context of a home rather than a hospital. This is being achieved through the design and construction of an automation scheme, based on iterative learning control and the Riener muscle model, that has the ability to adapt to the user and react to their level of fatigue and provide tangible physical recovery. It utilizes a SMART Phone and laptop to construct an iterative learning control (ILC) system, that monitors upper arm movement in three dimensions, as a series of exercises are undertaken. The equipment generates functional electrical stimulation to assist in muscle activation and thus improve directional accuracy. In addition, it monitors speed, accuracy, areas of motion weakness and similar parameters to create a performance index that can be compared over time and extrapolated to establish an independent and objective assessment scheme, plus an approximate estimation of predicted final outcome. To further extend its assessment capabilities, nerve conduction velocity readings are taken by the software, between the shoulder and hand muscles. This is utilized to measure the speed of response of neuron signal transfer along the arm and over time, an online indication of regeneration levels can be obtained. This will prove whether or not sufficient training intensity is being achieved even before perceivable movement dexterity is observed. The device also provides the option to connect to other users, via the internet, so that the patient can avoid feelings of isolation and can undertake movement exercises together with others in a similar position. This should create benefits not only for the encouragement of rehabilitation participation, but also an emotional support network potential. It is intended that this approach will extend the availability of stroke recovery options, enable ease of access at a low cost, reduce susceptibility to depression and through these endeavors, enhance the overall recovery success rate.
Creating a Virtual Perception for Upper Limb Rehabilitation
This paper describes the development of a virtual-reality system ARWED, which will be used in physical rehabilitation of patients with reduced upper extremity mobility to increase limb active range of motion. The ARWED system performs a symmetric reflection and real-time mapping of the patient’s healthy limb on to their most affected limb, tapping into the mirror neuron system and facilitating the initial learning phase. Using the ARWED, future experiments will test the extension of the action-observation priming effect linked to the mirror-neuron system on healthy subjects and then stroke patients.
Macroscopic Anatomy of the Vascular Foramina of Human Hamate Bone
Background: The morphological knowledge of the vasculature, their foramina of entry and number is required to understand the concepts in the avascular necrosis of the hamate and non-union. The aim of the present study was to study the topography and number of vascular foramina in the hamate bones of South Indian population. Methods: The present study included 47 human hamate bones, which were unpaired, the gender and age of them were unknown. They were macroscopically observed for the number and location of the vascular foramina at their each surface with the use of magnifying lens. The data was tabulated and analyzed. Results: The number ranged between 11 and 40 in each hamate bone. They were ranged between 1 and 11 in number at the palmar surface, lateral side. The foramina were between 0 and 4 at the medial side of the palmar surface. There were foramina observed at the apex of the hook, medial side which ranged between 0 and 6. The foramina at the distal surface ranged between 0 and 4. The foramina were highest at the dorsal surface, which ranged between 5 and 16 in each hamate bone. The number ranged between 0-3 at the proximal surface and 0-8 at the lateral surface. Conclusion: The morphological data of the present study from the South Indians can be used as a database, which is enlightening to the operating hand surgeon and radiologist to prevent the misinterpretation in the X-ray and computed tomogram scan films.
Role of Pro-Inflammatory and Regulatory Cytokines in Pathogenesis of Graves’ Disease in Association with Autoantibody Thyroid and Regulatory FOXP3 T-Cells
Background: Graves’ disease (GD) is an autoimmune thyroid disease. Imbalance of Th1/Th2 cells and T-regulatory (Treg)/Th17 cells were thought to play pivotal role in the pathogenesis of GD. Treg FoxP3 produced TGF-B to maintain regulatory function, and Th17 cells produced IL-17 as cytokines that were thought in mediating several autoimmune diseases. The aim of this study is to assess the role of IL-17 and TGF-B in the pathogenesis of GD and to investigate its correlation with thyroid autoantibody (TRAb) and Treg FoxP3 expression. Method: Thirty GD patients and 27 age and sex-matched control were enrolled in this study. Diagnosis of Graves’ disease was based on clinical and biochemical of Graves’ disease. Serum IL-17, TGF-B, TRAb and FoxP3 were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Data were analyzed using SPSS 21.0 (SPSS Inc.). Spearman rank correlation test was used for assessment of correlation. The statistical significance was accepted as P value < 0,05. Result: There was no significant correlation between IL-17 and TGF-B serum with expression of FoxP3 level in GD, but there was significant correlation between TGF-B and TRAb serum level (P < 0,05). Elevated serum level of IL-17 and TGF-B were found compared to control, with mean values 14,43 2,15 pg/mL and 10,44 3,19 pg/mL, for patients and 7,1 1,45 pg/mL and 4,95 1,35 pg/mL for control, respectively. Conclusion: Serum Il-17 and TGF-B were elevated in Graves’ disease patients that reflect the role of inflammatory and regulatory cytokines activation in pathogenesis of GD. There was a significant correlation between TGF-B and TRAb, described that there is also a role of regulatory T cell in pathogenesis of Graves’ disease.
The Effect of Physical Exercise to Level of Nuclear Factor Kappa B on Serum, Macrophages and Myocytes
Background: Physical exercise induces a pattern of hormonal and immunological responses that prevent endothelial dysfunction by maintaining the availability of nitric oxide (NO) consequent to the prevention of oxidative stress. Physical exercise can be regarded as a prototype of physical stress. Regular and moderate exercise stimulate NO release that can be considered as protective factor of cardiovascular diseases, while strenuous exercise induces increased levels in a number of pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines. Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) is a potent pro-inflammatory cytokine that triggers a strong endothelial activation which results in an increased vascular permeability, the hallmark of the inflammatory response. The biological effects of TNF-α is achieved by activation of the signal cascade of nuclear gene factor kappa B (NF-kB) a protein complex that controls transcription of DNA, cytokine production and cell survival. Aim of Study: To determine the effect of physical exercise to the endothelial and sceletal muscle, we measured the level of NFkB on rats serum, macrophages and myocites after strenuous physical exercise. Methods: This study was carried out on 30 male Rattus norvegicus strain Wistar at 8 weeks old. They acclimatized for one week in a room temperature, then randomly divided into five groups. The one group was control group (C), while the other four groups (T) were treated with sternuous physical exercise by ran on the treadmill at 32 m/min, for 1 hour or until exhaustion. The treated groups were killed by cervical dislocation sequentially, that is immediately (T1), 2 hours (T2), 6 hours (T3) and 24 hours (T4) after treadmill. Blood were collected intracardial, myocytes were obtained from gastocnemius muscle and macrophages were obtained from intraperitoneal fluid. Serum NFkB were measured from blood, while NFkB on macrophage were measured from isolation of macrophages, and on muscle were measured from isolation of myocytes. The measurement of NFkB using ELISA methods. This study was approved by Research Ethics Committee of Faculty of Medicine Andalas University. Results: From our study, we found that the level of NFkB on myocites in treated group which its specimen was taken immediately (T1), 2 hours after treadmill (T2) and 6 hours after treadmill (T3) were significantly higher than control group (p0,05). As well as on macrophages, NFkB in treated groups T1, T2 and T3 were significantly higher than control group (p0,05). The level of NFkB in serum in treated group was no significantly different between group and also in compare to control group (p>0,05). Serum NFkB was significantly higher than the level on macrophages and myocites (p
Cavitas Sensors into Human Cavities: Soft-Contact Lens and Mouthguard Sensors
‘Cavitas sensors’ attached to human body cavities such as a contact lens type and a mouthguard (‘no implantable', ‘no wearable’) attracted attention as self-detachable devices for daily medicine. In this contribution, the soft contact lens glucose sensor for tear sugar monitoring will be introduced. And the mouthguard sensor with dental materials integrated with Bluetooth low energy (BLE) wireless module for real-time monitoring of saliva glucose would also be demonstrated. In the near future, those self-detachable cavitas sensors are expected to improve quality of life in view of the aging of society.
Plga Nanoparticles Entrapping Amikacin and Moxifloxacin as a Potential Host-Directed Therapy for Multidrug Resistant Tuberculosis
Polymeric nanoparticles have been widely investigated as a controlled release drug delivery platform for the treatment of tuberculosis (TB). These nanoparticles were also readily internalised into macrophages, leading to high intracellular drug concentration. In this study two anti-TB drugs, amikacin and moxifloxacin were encapsulated into PLGA nanoparticles. The novelty of this work appears in: (1) the efficient encapsulation of two hydrophilic second-line anti-TB drugs,and (2) intramacrophage delivery of this synergistic combination potentially for rapid treatment of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB). Two water-oil-water (w/o/w) emulsion strategies were employed in this study: (1) alginate coated PLGA nanoparticles, and (2) alginate entrapped PLGA nanoparticles. The average particle size and polydispersity index (PDI) of the alginate coated PLGA nanoparticles were found to be unfavourably high with values of 640 ± 32 nm and 0.63 ± 0.09, respectively. In contrast, the alginate entrapped PLGA nanoparticles were within the desirable particle size range of 282 - 315 nm and the PDI was 0.08 - 0.16, and therefore were chosen for subsequent studies. Alginate entrapped PLGA nanoparticles yielded a drug loading of over 10 µg/mg powder for amikacin, and more than 5 µg/mg for moxifloxacin and entrapment efficiencies range of approximately 25-31% for moxifloxacin and 51-59% for amikacin. To study macrophage uptake efficiency, the nanoparticles of alginate entrapped nanoparticle formulation were loaded with acridine orange as a marker, seeded to THP-1 derived macrophages and viewed under confocal microscopy. The particles were readily internalised into the macrophages and highly concentrated in the nucleus region. Furthermore, the anti-mycobacterial activity of the drug-loaded particles was evaluated using M. tuberculosis-infected macrophages, which revealed a significant reduction (4 log reduction) of viable bacterial count compared to the untreated group. In conclusion, the amikacin-moxifloxacin alginate entrapped PLGA nanoparticles are promising for further in vivo studies.
Conversion of Glycerol to 3-Hydroxypropanoic Acid by Genetically Engineered Bacillus subtilis
3-hydroxypropanoic acid (3-HP) is one of the most important biomass-derivable platform chemicals that can be converted into a number of industrially important compounds. There have been several attempts at production of 3-HP from renewable sources in cell factories, focusing mainly on Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Despite the significant progress made in this field, commercially exploitable large-scale production of 3-HP in microbial strains has still not been achieved. In this study, we investigated the potential of Bacillus subtilis to be used as a microbial platform for bioconversion of glycerol into 3-HP. Our recombinant B. subtilis strains overexpress the two-step heterologous pathway containing glycerol dehydratase and aldehyde dehydrogenase from various backgrounds. The recombinant strains harboring the codon-optimized synthetic pathway from K. pneumoniae produced low levels of 3-HP. Since the enzymes in the heterologous pathway are sensitive to oxygen, we had to perform our experiments in micro-aerobic conditions. Under these conditions, the cell produces lactate in order to regenerate NAD+, and we found the lactate production to be in competition with the production of 3-HP. Therefore, based on the in silico predictions, we knocked out the glycerol kinase (glpk), which in combination with growth on glucose, resulted in improving the 3-HP titer to 1 g/L and the removal of lactate. Cultivation of the same strain in an enriched medium improved the 3-HP titer up to 7.6 g/L. Our findings provide the first report of successful introduction of the biosynthetic pathway for conversion of glycerol into 3-HP in B. subtilis.
A Mathematical Description of a Growing Cell Colony Based on the Mechanical Bidomain Model
The mechanical bidomain model is used to describe a colony of cells growing on a substrate. Analytical expressions are derived for the intracellular and extracellular displacements. Mechanotransduction events are driven by the difference between the displacements in the two spaces, corresponding to the force acting on integrins. The equation for the displacement consists of two terms: one proportional to the radius that is the same in the intracellular and extracellular spaces (the monodomain term) and one that is proportional to a modified Bessel function that is responsible for mechanotransduction (the bidomain term). The model predicts that mechanotransduction occurs within a few length constants of the colony’s edge, and an expression for the length constant contains the intracellular and extracellular shear moduli and the spring constant of the integrins coupling the two spaces. The model predictions are qualitatively consistent with experiments on human embryonic stem cell colonies, in which differentiation is localized near the edge.
Non Enzymatic Electrochemical Sensing of Glucose Using Manganese Doped Nickel Oxide Nanoparticles Decorated Carbon Nanotubes
Diabetes is one of the leading cause of death at present and remains an important concern as the prevalence of the disease is increasing at an alarming rate. Therefore, it is crucial to diagnose the accurate levels of glucose for developing an efficient therapeutic for diabetes. Due to the availability of convenient and compact self-testing, continuous monitoring of glucose is feasible nowadays. Enzyme based electrochemical sensing of glucose is quite popular because of its high selectivity but suffers from drawbacks like complicated purification and immobilization procedures, denaturation, high cost, and low sensitivity due to indirect electron transfer. Hence, designing a robust enzyme free platform using transition metal oxides remains crucial for the efficient and sensitive determination of glucose. In the present work, manganese doped nickel oxide nanoparticles (Mn-NiO) has been synthesized onto the surface of multiwalled carbon nanotubes using a simple microwave assisted approach for non-enzymatic electrochemical sensing of glucose. The morphology and structure of the synthesized nanostructures were characterized using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-Ray diffraction (XRD). We demonstrate that the synthesized nanostructures show enormous potential for electrocatalytic oxidation of glucose with high sensitivity and selectivity. Cyclic voltammetry and square wave voltammetry studies suggest superior sensitivity and selectivity of Mn-NiO decorated carbon nanotubes towards the non-enzymatic determination of glucose. A linear response between the peak current and the concentration of glucose has been found to be in the concentration range of 0.01 μM- 10000 μM which suggests the potential efficacy of Mn-NiO decorated carbon nanotubes for sensitive determination of glucose.
Outcome Analysis of Surgical and Nonsurgical Treatment on Indicated Operative Chronic Subdural Hematoma: Serial Case in Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital Indonesia
Chronic subdural hematoma (cSDH) is a common condition after head trauma. Although the size of the thickness of cSDH has an important role in the decision to perform surgery, but the size limit of the thickness is not absolute. In this serial case report, we evaluate three case report of cSDH that indicated to get the surgical procedure because of deficit neurologic and neuroimaging finding with subfalcine herniation more than 0.5 cm and hematoma thickness more than one cm. On the first case, the patient got evacuation hematoma procedure, but the second and third case, we did nonsurgical treatment because the patient and family refused to do the operation. We did the conservative treatment with bed rest and mannitol. Serial radiologic evaluation is done when we found worsening condition. We also reevaluated radiologic examination two weeks after the treatment. The results in this serial case report, the first and second case have a good outcome. On the third case, there was a worsening condition, which in this patient there was a comorbid with type two diabetic mellitus, pneumonie and chronic kidney disease. Some conservative treatment such as bed rest, corticosteroid, mannitol or the other hyperosmolar has a good outcome in patient without neurologic deficits, small hematoma, and or patient without comorbid disease. Evacuate hematome is the best choice in cSDH treatment with deficit neurologic finding. Afterall, there is some condition that we can not do the surgical procedure. Serial radiologic examination needed after two weeks to evaluate the treatment or if there is any worsening condition.
An Infinite Mixture Model for Modeling Stutter Ratio in Forensic Data Analysis
Forensic DNA analysis has received much attention over the last three decades, due to its incredible usefulness in human identification. The statistical interpretation of DNA evidence is recognised as one of the most mature fields in forensic science. Peak heights in an Electropherogram (EPG) are approximately proportional to the amount of template DNA in the original sample being tested. A stutter is a minor peak in an EPG, which is not masking as an allele of a potential contributor, and considered as an artefact that is presumed to be arisen due to miscopying or slippage during the PCR. Stutter peaks are mostly analysed in terms of stutter ratio that is calculated relative to the corresponding parent allele height. Analysis of mixture profiles has always been problematic in evidence interpretation, especially with the presence of PCR artefacts like stutters. Unlike binary and semi-continuous models; continuous models assign a probability (as a continuous weight) for each possible genotype combination, and significantly enhances the use of continuous peak height information resulting in more efficient reliable interpretations. Therefore, presence of a sound methodology to distinguish between stutters and real alleles is essential for the accuracy of the interpretation. Sensibly, any such method has to be able to focus on modeling stutter peaks. Bayesian nonparametric methods provide increased flexibility in applied statistical modeling. Mixture models are frequently employed as fundamental data analysis tools in clustering and classification of data and assume unidentified heterogeneous sources for data. In model based clustering, each unknown source is reflected by a cluster and the clusters are modeled using parametric models. Specifying the number of components in finite mixture models, however, is practically difficult even though the calculations are relatively simple. Infinite mixture models, in contrast, do not require the user to specify the number of components. Instead, a Dirichlet process, which is an infinite-dimensional generalization of the Dirichlet distribution, is used to deal with the problem of number of components. Chinese restaurant process (CRP), Stick-breaking process and Pólya urn scheme are frequently used as Dirichlet priors in Bayesian mixture models. This study illustrates an infinite mixture of simple linear regression models for modeling stutter ratio and introduces some modifications to overcome weaknesses associated with CRP.
The Solid-Phase Sensor Systems for Fluorescent and SERS-Recognition of Neurotransmitters for Their Visualization and Determination in Biomaterials
Such catecholamines as dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine are the principal neurotransmitters in the sympathetic nervous system. Catecholamines and their metabolites are considered to be important markers of socially significant diseases such as atherosclerosis, diabetes, coronary heart disease, carcinogenesis, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Currently, neurotransmitters can be studied via electrochemical and chromatographic techniques that allow their characterizing and quantification, although these techniques can only provide crude spatial information. Besides, the difficulty of catecholamine determination in biological materials is associated with their low normal concentrations (~ 1 nM) in biomaterials, which may become even one more order lower because of some disorders. In addition, in blood they are rapidly oxidized by monoaminooxidases from thrombocytes and, for this reason, the determination of neurotransmitter metabolism indicators in an organism should be very rapid (15—30 min), especially in critical states. Unfortunately, modern instrumental analysis does not offer a complex solution of this problem: despite its high sensitivity and selectivity, HPLC-MS cannot provide sufficiently rapid analysis, while enzymatic biosensors and immunoassays for the determination of the considered analytes lack sufficient sensitivity and reproducibility. Fluorescent and SERS-sensors remain a compelling technology for approaching the general problem of selective neurotransmitter detection. In recent years, a number of catecholamine sensors have been reported including RNA aptamers, fluorescent ribonucleopeptide (RNP) complexes, and boronic acid based synthetic receptors and the sensor operated in a turn-off mode. In this work we present the fluorescent and SERS turn-on sensor systems based on the bio- or chemorecognizing nanostructured films {chitosan/collagen-Tb/Eu/Cu-nanoparticles-indicator reagents} that provide the selective recognition, visualization, and sensing of the above mentioned catecholamines on the level of nanomolar concentrations in biomaterials (cell cultures, tissue etc.). We have (1) developed optically transparent porous films and gels of chitosan/collagen; (2) ensured functionalization of the surface by molecules-'recognizers' (by impregnation and immobilization of components of the indicator systems: biorecognizing and auxiliary reagents); (3) performed computer simulation for theoretical prediction and interpretation of some properties of the developed materials and obtained analytical signals in biomaterials. We are grateful for the financial support of this research from Russian Foundation for Basic Research (grants no. 15-03-05064 a, and 15-29-01330 ofi_m).
Electrospun Dual-Structured Biodegradable Blend Scaffold for the Simultaneous Delivery of Hydrophilic and Hydrophobic Drugs for Applications in Tissue Engineering
Electrospinning has emerged as a versatile, cost effective and reliable technique for fabrication of micro/Nanofibers and particles with a strict regulation of solution parameters. However, there is minimal evidence till date of any successful dual structured particle on fiber “Sandwich” drug delivery system obtained from electrospinning that could provide controlled release of two or more different drugs. In this study we have successfully fabricated a dual structured electro-spun fibrous- microparticle system through electrospinning for delivery of a hydrophilic and a hydrophobic drug simultaneously. A blend of two FDA approved biodegradable polymers was used as the electrospinning solution. Preliminary work focused on optimization of the processing parameters to arrive at 5-8μm porous particles that were electro-sprayed on a fibrous mesh network of PLGA-PCL fibers. The particles were further protected by another fibrous mesh on the top to prevent its loss during post-fabrication, thereby the entire system resembling a sandwich. Characterization of the scaffold was carried out using Scanning Electron Microscopy, Rheometer, and Fourier transform Infrared Spectroscopy. The hydrophobic Dexamethasone (Dex) was loaded into the fibers while Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) -a green tea extract was the hydrophilic drug loaded into the particles. The release profiles of these drugs were quantified with the help of High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) which enabled the detection of Dex at 246nm and EGCG at 273 nm respectively. Future studies are directed towards understanding the influence of the carrier morphology and the efficacy of the proposed system on the differentiation capabilities of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and the synergistic effect of these drugs will be explored in depth using cancer cell lines.
Soluble CD36 and Cardiovascular Risk in Middle-Aged Subjects
CD36 is involved in the development of atherosclerosis by enhancing macrophage endocytosis of oxidized-low density lipoproteins and foam cell formation. Soluble CD36 (sCD36) was found to be elevated in type 2 diabetic patients and was supposed to act as a marker of insulin resistance and atherosclerosis. In young subjects, sCD36 was associated with cardiovascular risk factors including obesity and hypertriglyceridemia. This study was conducted to further investigate the relationship between plasma sCD36 and cardiovascular risk factors among middle-aged patients with metabolic syndrome (MetS) and healthy controls. SCD36 concentrations were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) for 41 patients with MetS and 36 healthy controls. Data for other variables were obtained from patients' medical records. SCD36 concentrations were relatively low compared to most other studies and were not significantly different between the MetS group and controls (P-value=0.17). SCD36 was also not correlated with age, body mass index, glucose, lipid profile, serum electrolytes and blood counts. SCD36 was not significantly different between subjects with obesity, hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia, hypertension or cardiovascular disease and those without these abnormalities (P-value > 0.05). The inconsistency between results reported in this study and other studies may be unique to the study population or be a result of the lack of a reliable standardized method for determining absolute sCD36 concentrations. However, further investigations are required to assess CD36 tissue expression in the study population and to assess the accuracy of various commercially available sCD36 ELISA kits. Thus, the availability of a standardized simple sCD36 ELISA that could be performed in any basic laboratory would be more favorable to the specialized flow cytometry methods that detect CD36+ microparticles if it was to be used as a biomarker.
Multilingualism without a Dominant Language in the Preschool Age: A Case of Natural Italian-Russian-German-English Multilingualism
The purpose of keeping bi/multilingualism is usually a way to let the child speak two/three languages at the same level. The main problem which normally appears is a mixed language or a domination of one language. The same level of two or more languages would be ideal but practically not easily reachable. So it was made an experiment with a girl with a natural multilingualism as an attempt to avoid a dominant language in the preschool age. The girl lives in Germany and the main languages for her are Italian, Russian and German but she also hears every day English. ‘One parent – one language’ strategy was used since the beginning so Italian and Russian were spoken to her since her birth, English was spoken between the parents and when she was 1,5 it was added German as a language of a nursery. In order to avoid a dominant language, she was always put in international groups with activity in different languages. Even if it was not possible to avoid an interference of languages in this case we can talk not only about natural multilingualism but also about balanced bilingualism in preschool time. The languages have been developing in parallel with different accents in a different period. Now at the age of 6 we can see natural horizontal multilingualism Russian/Italian/German/English. At the moment, her Russian/Italian bilingualism is balanced. German vocabulary is less but the language is active and English is receptive. We can also see a reciprocal interference of all the three languages (English is receptive so the simple phrases are normally said correctly but they are not enough to judge the level of language interference and it is not noticed any ‘English’ mistakes in other languages). After analysis of the state of every language, we can see as a positive and negative result of the experiment. As a positive result we can see that in the age of 6 the girl does not refuse any language, three languages are active, she differentiate languages and even if she says a word from another language she notifies that it is not a correct word, and the most important are the fact, that she does not have a preferred language. As a prove of the last statement it is to be noticed not only her self-identification as ‘half Russian and half Italian’ but also an answer to the question about her ‘mother tongue’: ‘I do not know, probably, when I have my own children I will speak one day Russian and one day Italian and sometimes German’. As a negative result, we can notice that not only a development of all the three languages are a little bit slower than it is supposed for her age but since she does not have a dominating language she also does not have a ‘perfect’ language and the interference is reciprocal. In any case, the experiment shows that it is possible to keep at least two languages without a preference in a pre-school multilingual space.
Multilingual Students Acting as Language Brokers in Italy: Their Points of View and Feelings towards This Activity
Italy is undergoing one of its largest migratory waves, and Italian schools are reporting the highest numbers of multilingual students coming from immigrant families and speaking minority languages. For these pupils, who have not perfectly acquired their mother tongue yet, learning a second language may represent a burden on their linguistic development and may have some repercussions on their school performances and relational skills. These are some of the reasons why they have turned out to be those who have the worst grades and the highest school drop-out rates. However, despite these negative outcomes, it has been demonstrated that multilingual immigrant students frequently act as translators or language brokers for their peers or family members who do not speak Italian fluently. This activity has been defined as Child Language Brokering (hereinafter CLB) and it has become a common practice especially in minority communities as immigrants’ children often learn the host language much more quickly than their parents, thus contributing to their family life by acting as language and cultural mediators. This presentation aims to analyse the data collected by a research carried out during the school year 2014-2015 in the province of Ravenna, in the Northern Italian region of Emilia-Romagna, among 126 immigrant students attending junior high schools. The purpose of the study was to analyse by means of a structured questionnaire whether multilingualism matched with language brokering experiences or not and to examine the perspectives of those students who reported having acted as translators using their linguistic knowledge to help people understand each other. The questionnaire consisted of 34 items roughly divided into 2 sections. The first section required multilingual students to provide personal details like their date and place of birth, as well as details about their families (number of siblings, parents’ jobs). In the second section, they were asked about the languages spoken in their families as well as their language brokering experience. The in-depth questionnaire sought to investigate a wide variety of brokering issues such as frequency and purpose of the activity, where, when and which documents young language brokers translate and how they feel about this practice. The results have demonstrated that CLB is a very common practice among immigrants’ children living in Ravenna and almost all students reported positive feelings when asked about their brokering experience with their families and also at school. In line with previous studies, responses to the questionnaire item regarding the people they brokered for revealed that the category ranking first is parents. Similarly, language-brokering activities tend to occur most often at home and the documents they translate the most (either orally or in writing) are notes from teachers. Such positive feelings towards this activity together with the evidence that it occurs very often in schools have laid the foundation for further projects on how this common practice may be valued and used to strengthen the linguistic skills of these multilingual immigrant students and thus their school performances.
Third Language Perception of English Initial Plosives by Mandarin-Japanese Bilinguals
The aim of this paper is to investigate whether being bilinguals facilitates or impedes the perception of a third language. The present study conducted a perception experiment in which Mandarin-Japanese bilinguals categorized a Voice-Onset-Time (VOT) continuum into English /b/ or /p/. The results show that early bilinguals were influenced by both Mandarin and Japanese, while late bilinguals behaved in a similar manner to Mandarin monolinguals Thus, it can be concluded that in the present study having two languages did not help bilinguals to perceive L3 stop contrast native-likely.
System for Mechanical Stimulation of the Mesenchymal Stem Cells Supporting Differentiation into Osteogenic Cells
The aim of this study was to develop a system for mechanical and also electrical stimulation controlling in vitro osteogenesis under conditions more similar to the in vivo bone microenvironment than traditional static cultivation, which would achieve good adhesion, growth and other specific behaviors of osteogenic cells in cultures. An engineered culture system for mechanical stimulation of the mesenchymal stem cells on the charged surface was designed. The bioreactor allows efficient mechanical loading inducing an electrical response and perfusion of the culture chamber with seeded cells. The mesenchymal stem cells were seeded to specific charged materials, like polarized hydroxyapatite (Hap) or other materials with piezoelectric and ferroelectric features, to create electrical potentials for stimulating of the cells. The material of the matrix was TiNb alloy designed for these purposes, and it was covered by BaTiO3 film, like a kind of piezoelectric material. The process of mechanical stimulation inducing electrical response is controlled by measuring electrical potential in the chamber. It was performed a series of experiments, where the cells were seeded, perfused and stimulated up to 48 hours under different conditions, especially pressure and perfusion. The analysis of the proteins expression was done, which demonstrated the effective mechanical and electrical stimulation. The experiments demonstrated effective stimulation of the cells in comparison with the static culture. This work was supported by the Ministry of Health, grant No. 15-29153A and the Grant Agency of the Czech Republic grant No. GA15-01558S.
Bioreactor for Cell-Based Impedance Measuring with Diamond Coated Gold Interdigitated Electrodes
Cell-based impedance spectroscopy is suitable method for electrical monitoring of cell activity especially on substrates that cannot be easily inspected by optical microscope (without fluorescent markers) like decellularized tissues, nano-fibrous scaffold etc. Special sensor for this measurement was developed. This sensor consists of corning glass substrate with gold interdigitated electrodes covered with diamond layer. This diamond layer provides biocompatible non-conductive surface for cells. Also, a special PPFC flow cultivation chamber was developed. This chamber is able to fix sensor in place. The spring contacts are connecting sensor pads with external measuring device. Construction allows real-time live cell imaging. Combining with perfusion system allows medium circulation and generating shear stress stimulation. Experimental evaluation consist of several setups, including pure sensor without any coating and also collagen and fibrin coating was done. The Adipose derived stem cells (ASC) and Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) were seeded onto sensor in cultivation chamber. Then the chamber was installed into microscope system for live-cell imaging. The impedance measurement was utilized by vector impedance analyzer. The measured range was from 10 Hz to 40 kHz. These impedance measurements were correlated with live-cell microscopic imaging and immunofluorescent staining. Data analysis of measured signals showed response to cell adhesion of substrates, their proliferation and also change after shear stress stimulation which are important parameters during cultivation. Further experiments plan to use decellularized tissue as scaffold fixed on sensor. This kind of impedance sensor can provide feedback about cell culture conditions on opaque surfaces and scaffolds that can be used in tissue engineering in development artificial prostheses. This work was supported by the Ministry of Health, grants No. 15-29153A and 15-33018A.