Science.gov

Sample records for accurate diagnostic tools

  1. Raman Spectroscopy Provides a Powerful Diagnostic Tool for Accurate Determination of Albumin Glycation

    PubMed Central

    Dingari, Narahara Chari; Horowitz, Gary L.; Kang, Jeon Woong; Dasari, Ramachandra R.; Barman, Ishan

    2012-01-01

    We present the first demonstration of glycated albumin detection and quantification using Raman spectroscopy without the addition of reagents. Glycated albumin is an important marker for monitoring the long-term glycemic history of diabetics, especially as its concentrations, in contrast to glycated hemoglobin levels, are unaffected by changes in erythrocyte life times. Clinically, glycated albumin concentrations show a strong correlation with the development of serious diabetes complications including nephropathy and retinopathy. In this article, we propose and evaluate the efficacy of Raman spectroscopy for determination of this important analyte. By utilizing the pre-concentration obtained through drop-coating deposition, we show that glycation of albumin leads to subtle, but consistent, changes in vibrational features, which with the help of multivariate classification techniques can be used to discriminate glycated albumin from the unglycated variant with 100% accuracy. Moreover, we demonstrate that the calibration model developed on the glycated albumin spectral dataset shows high predictive power, even at substantially lower concentrations than those typically encountered in clinical practice. In fact, the limit of detection for glycated albumin measurements is calculated to be approximately four times lower than its minimum physiological concentration. Importantly, in relation to the existing detection methods for glycated albumin, the proposed method is also completely reagent-free, requires barely any sample preparation and has the potential for simultaneous determination of glycated hemoglobin levels as well. Given these key advantages, we believe that the proposed approach can provide a uniquely powerful tool for quantification of glycation status of proteins in biopharmaceutical development as well as for glycemic marker determination in routine clinical diagnostics in the future. PMID:22393405

  2. RT-PCR is a more accurate diagnostic tool for detection of BCR-ABL rearrangement

    SciTech Connect

    Zehnbauer, B.A.; Allen, A.P.; McGrath, S.D.

    1994-09-01

    Detection of the Philadelphia chromosome (Ph1) or genomic Southern hybridization for clonal gene rearrangement (GSH-R) has provided very specific identification of BCR-ABL gene rearrangement. Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) is diagnostic for patterns of BCR-ABL expression which are undetected by GSH-R and/or Ph1 and provides increased sensitivity both at diagnosis and in detection of minimal residual leukemia. Fifty-three specimens (of 150 tested from 119 consecutive leukemia patients) were RT-PCR positive for BCR-ABL gene expression confirmed by hybridization of PCR products with b{sub 3}a{sub 2}, b{sub 2}a{sub 2}, or e{sub 1}a{sub 2} junction-specific oligonucleotides. In 6 cases of CML with GSH-R{sup {minus}}at diagnosis, RT-PCR provided specific BCR-ABL identification. Deletion of BCR regions, low mitotic index, or e{sub 1}a{sub 2} expression caused failure to detect GSH-R or Ph1 translocation.

  3. Validation of Three Early Ejaculation Diagnostic Tools: A Composite Measure Is Accurate and More Adequate for Diagnosis by Updated Diagnostic Criteria

    PubMed Central

    Jern, Patrick; Piha, Juhana; Santtila, Pekka

    2013-01-01

    Purpose To validate three early ejaculation diagnostic tools, and propose a new tool for diagnosis in line with proposed changes to diagnostic criteria. Significant changes to diagnostic criteria are expected in the near future. Available screening tools do not necessarily reflect proposed changes. Materials and Methods Data from 148 diagnosed early ejaculation patients (Mage = 42.8) and 892 controls (Mage = 33.1 years) from a population-based sample were used. Participants responded to three different questionnaires (Premature Ejaculation Profile; Premature Ejaculation Diagnostic Tool; Multiple Indicators of Premature Ejaculation). Stopwatch measured ejaculation latency times were collected from a subsample of early ejaculation patients. We used two types of responses to the questionnaires depending on the treatment status of the patients 1) responses regarding the situation before starting pharmacological treatment and 2) responses regarding current situation. Logistic regressions and Receiver Operating Characteristics were used to assess ability of both the instruments and individual items to differentiate between patients and controls. Results All instruments had very good precision (Areas under the Curve ranging from .93-.98). A new five-item instrument (named CHecklist for Early Ejaculation Symptoms – CHEES) consisting of high-performance variables selected from the three instruments had validity (Nagelkerke R2 range .51-.79 for backwards/forwards logistic regression) equal to or slightly better than any individual instrument (i.e., had slightly higher validity statistics, but these differences did not achieve statistical significance). Importantly, however, this instrument was more in line with proposed changes to diagnostic criteria. Conclusions All three screening tools had good validity. A new 5-item diagnostic tool (CHEES) based on the three instruments had equal or somewhat more favorable validity statistics compared to the other three tools, but is

  4. Rig Diagnostic Tools

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Soileau, Kerry M.; Baicy, John W.

    2008-01-01

    Rig Diagnostic Tools is a suite of applications designed to allow an operator to monitor the status and health of complex networked systems using a unique interface between Java applications and UNIX scripts. The suite consists of Java applications, C scripts, Vx- Works applications, UNIX utilities, C programs, and configuration files. The UNIX scripts retrieve data from the system and write them to a certain set of files. The Java side monitors these files and presents the data in user-friendly formats for operators to use in making troubleshooting decisions. This design allows for rapid prototyping and expansion of higher-level displays without affecting the basic data-gathering applications. The suite is designed to be extensible, with the ability to add new system components in building block fashion without affecting existing system applications. This allows for monitoring of complex systems for which unplanned shutdown time comes at a prohibitive cost.

  5. Evaluation of triple stage mass spectrometry as a robust and accurate diagnostic tool for determination of free cordycepin in designer egg.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yi Hsin; Lim, Chee Wei; Chan, Sheot Harn

    2014-05-01

    Direct determination of free cordycepin in designer egg using a highly selective mass spectrometric (MS) technique aided by a rapid and efficient dilute-and-shoot workflow would enhance their application as diagnostic tools in food fraud control. Here, triple stage mass spectrometry (MS(3)) demonstrated excellent analyte selectivity capability even when incomplete chromatographic separation was performed. Method validation was performed at six concentration levels of 100, 200, 400, 800, 1200 and 1600ngg(-1). Spiking experiments were examined at three concentration levels of 200, 400, and 1200ngg(-1) in individual egg white and egg yolk, measured over 2days. MS(3) enabled ion chromatograms with zero-background interference to be made in egg extracts. MS(3) eliminated severe over recovery (p<0.05) observed in all fortified samples, a challenge that MRM-transition could not address in a single step. Matrix-matched calibrants were needed to compensate for over recovery observed under MRM-transition mode. PMID:24360442

  6. SOPROLIFE System: An Accurate Diagnostic Enhancer

    PubMed Central

    Zeitouny, Mona; Feghali, Mireille; Nasr, Assaad; Abou-Samra, Philippe; Saleh, Nadine; Bourgeois, Denis; Farge, Pierre

    2014-01-01

    Objectives. The aim of this study was to evaluate a light-emitting diode fluorescence tool, the SOPROLIFE light-induced fluorescence evaluator, and compare it to the international caries detection and assessment system-II (ICDAS-II) in the detection of occlusal caries. Methods. A total of 219 permanent posterior teeth in 21 subjects, with age ranging from 15 to 65 years, were examined. An intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) was computed to assess the reliability between the two diagnostic methods. Results. The results showed a high reliability between the two methods (ICC = 0.92; IC = 0.901–0.940; P < 0.001). The SOPROLIFE blue fluorescence mode had a high sensitivity (87%) and a high specificity (99%) when compared to ICDAS-II. Conclusion. Compared to the most used visual method in the diagnosis of occlusal caries lesions, the finding from this study suggests that SOPROLIFE can be used as a reproducible and reliable assessment tool. At a cut-off point, categorizing noncarious lesions and visual change in enamel, SOPROLIFE shows a high sensitivity and specificity. We can conclude that financially ICDAS is better than SOPROLIFE. However SOPROLIFE is easier for clinicians since it is a simple evaluation of images. Finally in terms of efficiency SOPROLIFE is not superior to ICDAS but tends to be equivalent with the same advantages. PMID:25401161

  7. Tube dimpling tool assures accurate dip-brazed joints

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beuyukian, C. S.; Heisman, R. M.

    1968-01-01

    Portable, hand-held dimpling tool assures accurate brazed joints between tubes of different diameters. Prior to brazing, the tool performs precise dimpling and nipple forming and also provides control and accurate measuring of the height of nipples and depth of dimples so formed.

  8. Merits and Pitfalls of Currently Used Diagnostic Tools in Mycetoma

    PubMed Central

    van de Sande, Wendy W. J.; Fahal, Ahmed H.; Goodfellow, Michael; Mahgoub, El Sheikh; Welsh, Oliverio; Zijlstra, Ed E.

    2014-01-01

    Treatment of mycetoma depends on the causative organism and since many organisms, both actinomycetes (actinomycetoma) and fungi (eumycetoma), are capable of producing mycetoma, an accurate diagnosis is crucial. Currently, multiple diagnostic tools are used to determine the extent of infections and to identify the causative agents of mycetoma. These include various imaging, cytological, histopathological, serological, and culture techniques; phenotypic characterisation; and molecular diagnostics. In this review, we summarize these techniques and identify their merits and pitfalls in the identification of the causative agents of mycetoma and the extent of the disease. We also emphasize the fact that there is no ideal diagnostic tool available to identify the causative agents and that future research should focus on the development of new and reliable diagnostic tools. PMID:24992636

  9. Investigating the Effectiveness of Classroom Diagnostic Tools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schultz, Robert K.

    2012-01-01

    The primary purposes of the study are to investigate what teachers experience while using the Classroom Diagnostic Tools (CDT) and to relate those experiences to the rate of growth in students' mathematics achievement. The CDT contains three components: an online computer adaptive diagnostic test, interactive web-based student reports, and…

  10. Diagnostic Tools for Learning Organizations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moilanen, Raili

    2001-01-01

    The Learning Organization Diamond Tool was designed for holistic analysis of 10 learning organization elements at the individual and organizational levels. A test in 25 Finnish organizations established validity. Comparison with existing tools showed that differences derive from their different purposes. (Contains 33 references.) (SK)

  11. Adults' Prejudice Toward Youth: A Diagnostic Tool.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuvlesky, William P.

    Designed to reveal the nature of widespread pejorative orientations faced by youth in an adult world, the diagnostic tool consists of a 9-item inventory which is to be self-administered in group situations and self-analyzed by the subject. The tool provides a means of measuring and investigating the patterns of coexistence among three different…

  12. Diagnostic CALL Tool for Arabic Learners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alsabaan, Majed; Ramsay, Allan

    2014-01-01

    Our proposed work is aimed at teaching non-native Arabic speakers how to improve their pronunciation. This paper reports on a diagnostic tool for helping non-native speakers of Arabic improve their pronunciation, particularly of words involving sounds that are not distinguished in their native languages. The tool involves the implementation of…

  13. Diagnostic Tools of Pleural Effusion

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Pleural effusion is not a rare disease in Korea. The diagnosis of pleural effusion is very difficult, even though the patients often complain of typical symptoms indicating of pleural diseases. Pleural effusion is characterized by the pleural cavity filled with transudative or exudative pleural fluids, and it is developed by various etiologies. The presence of pleural effusion can be confirmed by radiological studies including simple chest radiography, ultrasonography, or computed tomography. Identifying the causes of pleural effusions by pleural fluid analysis is essential for proper treatments. This review article provides information on the diagnostic approaches of pleural effusions and further suggested ways to confirm their various etiologies, by using the most recent journals for references. PMID:24920946

  14. Diagnostic tools in Rhinology EAACI position paper

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    This EAACI Task Force document aims at providing the readers with a comprehensive and complete overview of the currently available tools for diagnosis of nasal and sino-nasal disease. We have tried to logically order the different important issues related to history taking, clinical examination and additional investigative tools for evaluation of the severity of sinonasal disease into a consensus document. A panel of European experts in the field of Rhinology has contributed to this consensus document on Diagnostic Tools in Rhinology. PMID:22410181

  15. Web100-based Network Diagnostic Tool

    2003-03-20

    NDT is a client/server based network diagnostic tool developed to aid in finding network performance and configuration problems. The tool measures data transfer rates between two internet hosts (client and server). It also gathers detailed TCP statistical variable counters supplied by the Web100 modified server and uses these TCP variables to compute the theoretical performance rate between the two internet hosts. It then compares these analytical results with the measured results to determine if performancemore » or configuration problems exist and translates these results into plain text messages to aid users and network operators in resolving reported problems.« less

  16. Biophotonic Tools in Cell and Tissue Diagnostics

    PubMed Central

    Brownstein, Michael; Hoffman, Robert A.; Levenson, Richard; Milner, Thomas E.; Dowell, M. L.; Williams, P. A.; White, G. S.; Gaigalas, A. K.; Hwang, J. C.

    2007-01-01

    In order to maintain the rapid advance of biophotonics in the U.S. and enhance our competitiveness worldwide, key measurement tools must be in place. As part of a wide-reaching effort to improve the U.S. technology base, the National Institute of Standards and Technology sponsored a workshop titled “Biophotonic tools for cell and tissue diagnostics.” The workshop focused on diagnostic techniques involving the interaction between biological systems and photons. Through invited presentations by industry representatives and panel discussion, near- and far-term measurement needs were evaluated. As a result of this workshop, this document has been prepared on the measurement tools needed for biophotonic cell and tissue diagnostics. This will become a part of the larger measurement road-mapping effort to be presented to the Nation as an assessment of the U.S. Measurement System. The information will be used to highlight measurement needs to the community and to facilitate solutions. PMID:27110461

  17. Diagnostic Tools for Onchocerciasis Elimination Programs.

    PubMed

    Vlaminck, Johnny; Fischer, Peter U; Weil, Gary J

    2015-11-01

    Onchocerciasis (river blindness) is a major public health problem in sub-Saharan Africa. Major disease-control programs have greatly reduced both disease and infection prevalence by mass distribution of donated ivermectin. Recent studies have shown that local elimination was achieved in some areas following many years of ivermectin. The global health community has recently decided to build on these successes with a new program that aims to eliminate onchocerciasis. Diagnostic tests that were useful for identifying priority areas for disease prevention may not be adequate tools for elimination programs. This paper reviews available and emerging diagnostic tests for onchocerciasis and considers how they might be best employed during different stages of onchocerciasis elimination programs. PMID:26458784

  18. [Diagnostic tools for canine parvovirus infection].

    PubMed

    Proksch, A L; Hartmann, K

    2015-01-01

    Canine parvovirus (CPV) infection is one of the most important and common infectious diseases in dogs, in particular affecting young puppies when maternal antibodies have waned and vaccine-induced antibodies have not yet developed. The mortality rate remains high. Therefore, a rapid and safe diagnostic tool is essential to diagnose the disease to 1) provide intensive care treatment and 2) to identify virus-shedding animals and thus prevent virus spread. Whilst the detection of antibodies against CPV is considered unsuitable to diagnose the disease, there are several different methods to directly detect complete virus, virus antigen or DNA. Additionally, to test in commercial laboratories, rapid in-house tests based on ELISA are available worldwide. The specificity of the ELISA rapid in-house tests is reported to be excellent. However, results on sensitivity vary and high numbers of false-negative results are commonly reported, which potentially leads to misdiagnosis. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a very sensitive and specific diagnostic tool. It also provides the opportunity to differentiate vaccine strains from natural infection when sequencing is performed after PCR. PMID:26403490

  19. Fast, accurate, robust and Open Source Brain Extraction Tool (OSBET)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Namias, R.; Donnelly Kehoe, P.; D'Amato, J. P.; Nagel, J.

    2015-12-01

    The removal of non-brain regions in neuroimaging is a critical task to perform a favorable preprocessing. The skull-stripping depends on different factors including the noise level in the image, the anatomy of the subject being scanned and the acquisition sequence. For these and other reasons, an ideal brain extraction method should be fast, accurate, user friendly, open-source and knowledge based (to allow for the interaction with the algorithm in case the expected outcome is not being obtained), producing stable results and making it possible to automate the process for large datasets. There are already a large number of validated tools to perform this task but none of them meets the desired characteristics. In this paper we introduced an open source brain extraction tool (OSBET), composed of four steps using simple well-known operations such as: optimal thresholding, binary morphology, labeling and geometrical analysis that aims to assemble all the desired features. We present an experiment comparing OSBET with other six state-of-the-art techniques against a publicly available dataset consisting of 40 T1-weighted 3D scans and their corresponding manually segmented images. OSBET gave both: a short duration with an excellent accuracy, getting the best Dice Coefficient metric. Further validation should be performed, for instance, in unhealthy population, to generalize its usage for clinical purposes.

  20. Scallops skeletons as tools for accurate proxy calibration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lorrain, A.; Paulet, Y.-M.; Chauvaud, L.; Dunbar, R.; Mucciarone, D.; Pécheyran, C.; Amouroux, D.; Fontugne, M.

    2003-04-01

    Bivalves skeletons are able to produce great geochemical proxies. But general calibration of those proxies are based on approximate time basis because of misunderstanding of growth rhythm. In this context, the Great scallop, Pecten maximus, appears to be a powerful tool as a daily growth deposit has been clearly identified for this species (Chauvaud et al, 1998; Lorrain et al, 2000), allowing accurate environmental calibration. Indeed, using this species, a date can be affiliated to each growth increment, and as a consequence environmental parameters can be closely compared (at a daily scale) to observed chemical and structural shell variations. This daily record provides an unequivocal basis to calibrate proxies. Isotopic (Delta-13C and Delta-15N) and trace element analysis (LA-ICP-MS) have been performed on several individuals and different years depending on the analysed parameter. Seawater parameters measured one meter above the sea-bottom were compared to chemical variations in the calcitic shell. Their confrontation showed that even with a daily basis for data interpretation, calibration is still a challenge. Inter-individual variations are found and correlations are not always reproducible from one year to the others. The first explanation could be an inaccurate appreciation of the proximate environment of the animal, notably the water-sediment interface could best represent Pecten maximus environment. Secondly, physiological parameters could be inferred for those discrepancies. In particular, calcification takes places in the extrapallial fluid, which composition might be very different from external environment. Accurate calibration of chemical proxies should consider biological aspects to gain better insights into the processes controlling the incorporation of those chemical elements. The characterisation of isotopic and trace element composition of the extrapallial fluid and hemolymph could greatly help our understanding of chemical shell variations.

  1. Slim hole MWD tool accurately measures downhole annular pressure

    SciTech Connect

    Burban, B.; Delahaye, T. )

    1994-02-14

    Measurement-while-drilling of downhole pressure accurately determines annular pressure losses from circulation and drillstring rotation and helps monitor swab and surge pressures during tripping. In early 1993, two slim-hole wells (3.4 in. and 3 in. diameter) were drilled with continuous real-time electromagnetic wave transmission of downhole temperature and annular pressure. The data were obtained during all stages of the drilling operation and proved useful for operations personnel. The use of real-time measurements demonstrated the characteristic hydraulic effects of pressure surges induced by drillstring rotation in the small slim-hole annulus under field conditions. The interest in this information is not restricted to the slim-hole geometry. Monitoring or estimating downhole pressure is a key element for drilling operations. Except in special cases, no real-time measurements of downhole annular pressure during drilling and tripping have been used on an operational basis. The hydraulic effects are significant in conventional-geometry wells (3 1/2-in. drill pipe in a 6-in. hole). This paper describes the tool and the results from the field test.

  2. PCR AS A DIAGNOSTIC TOOL FOR BRUCELLOSIS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Numerous PCR-based assays have been developed for the identification of Brucella to improve diagnostic capabilities. Collectively, the repertoire of assays addresses several aspects of the diagnostic process. For some purposes, the simple identification of Brucella is adequate (e.g. diagnosis of ...

  3. Metabolic fingerprinting as a diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    Ellis, David I; Dunn, Warwick B; Griffin, Julian L; Allwood, J William; Goodacre, Royston

    2007-09-01

    Within the framework of systems biology, functional analyses at all 'omic levels have seen an intense level of activity during the first decade of the twenty-first century. These include genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and lipidomics. It could be said that metabolomics offers some unique advantages over the other 'omics disciplines and one of the core approaches of metabolomics for disease diagnostics is metabolic fingerprinting. This review provides an overview of the main metabolic fingerprinting approaches used for disease diagnostics and includes: infrared and Raman spectroscopy, Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, followed by an introduction to a wide range of novel mass spectrometry-based methods, which are currently under intense investigation and developmental activity in laboratories worldwide. It is hoped that this review will act as a springboard for researchers and clinicians across a wide range of disciplines in this exciting era of multidisciplinary and novel approaches to disease diagnostics. PMID:17924839

  4. Comparison of emerging diagnostic tools for large commercial HVAC systems

    SciTech Connect

    Friedman, Hannah; Piette, Mary Ann

    2001-04-06

    Diagnostic software tools for large commercial buildings are being developed to help detect and diagnose energy and other performance problems with building operations. These software applications utilize energy management control system (EMCS) trend log data. Due to the recent development of diagnostic tools, there has been little detailed comparison among the tools and a limited awareness of tool capabilities by potential users. Today, these diagnostic tools focus mainly on air handlers, but the opportunity exists for broadening the scope of the tools to include all major parts of heating, cooling, and ventilation systems in more detail. This paper compares several tools in the following areas: (1) Scope, intent, and background; (2) Data acquisition, pre-processing, and management; (3) Problems detected; (4) Raw data visualization; (5) Manual and automated diagnostic methods and (6) Level of automation. This comparison is intended to provide practitioners and researchers with a picture of the current state of diagnostic tools. There is tremendous potential for these tools to help improve commercial building energy and non-energy performance.

  5. Rapid Diagnostic Algorithms as a Screening Tool for Tuberculosis: An Assessor Blinded Cross-Sectional Study

    PubMed Central

    Ratzinger, Franz; Bruckschwaiger, Harald; Wischenbart, Martin; Parschalk, Bernhard; Fernandez-Reyes, Delmiro; Lagler, Heimo; Indra, Alexandra; Graninger, Wolfgang; Winkler, Stefan; Krishna, Sanjeev; Ramharter, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Background A major obstacle to effectively treat and control tuberculosis is the absence of an accurate, rapid, and low-cost diagnostic tool. A new approach for the screening of patients for tuberculosis is the use of rapid diagnostic classification algorithms. Methods We tested a previously published diagnostic algorithm based on four biomarkers as a screening tool for tuberculosis in a Central European patient population using an assessor-blinded cross-sectional study design. In addition, we developed an improved diagnostic classification algorithm based on a study population at a tertiary hospital in Vienna, Austria, by supervised computational statistics. Results The diagnostic accuracy of the previously published diagnostic algorithm for our patient population consisting of 206 patients was 54% (CI: 47%–61%). An improved model was constructed using inflammation parameters and clinical information. A diagnostic accuracy of 86% (CI: 80%–90%) was demonstrated by 10-fold cross validation. An alternative model relying solely on clinical parameters exhibited a diagnostic accuracy of 85% (CI: 79%–89%). Conclusion Here we show that a rapid diagnostic algorithm based on clinical parameters is only slightly improved by inclusion of inflammation markers in our cohort. Our results also emphasize the need for validation of new diagnostic algorithms in different settings and patient populations. PMID:23185397

  6. Diagnostics Tools Identify Faults Prior to Failure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2013-01-01

    Through the SBIR program, Rochester, New York-based Impact Technologies LLC collaborated with Ames Research Center to commercialize the Center s Hybrid Diagnostic Engine, or HyDE, software. The fault detecting program is now incorporated into a software suite that identifies potential faults early in the design phase of systems ranging from printers to vehicles and robots, saving time and money.

  7. DIAGNOSTIC TOOL DEVELOPMENT AND APPLICATION THROUGH REGIONAL CASE STUDIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Case studies are a useful vehicle for developing and testing conceptual models, classification systems, diagnostic tools and models, and stressor-response relationships. Furthermore, case studies focused on specific places or issues of interest to the Agency provide an excellent ...

  8. The FLUKA Code: An Accurate Simulation Tool for Particle Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Battistoni, Giuseppe; Bauer, Julia; Boehlen, Till T.; Cerutti, Francesco; Chin, Mary P. W.; Dos Santos Augusto, Ricardo; Ferrari, Alfredo; Ortega, Pablo G.; Kozłowska, Wioletta; Magro, Giuseppe; Mairani, Andrea; Parodi, Katia; Sala, Paola R.; Schoofs, Philippe; Tessonnier, Thomas; Vlachoudis, Vasilis

    2016-01-01

    Monte Carlo (MC) codes are increasingly spreading in the hadrontherapy community due to their detailed description of radiation transport and interaction with matter. The suitability of a MC code for application to hadrontherapy demands accurate and reliable physical models capable of handling all components of the expected radiation field. This becomes extremely important for correctly performing not only physical but also biologically based dose calculations, especially in cases where ions heavier than protons are involved. In addition, accurate prediction of emerging secondary radiation is of utmost importance in innovative areas of research aiming at in vivo treatment verification. This contribution will address the recent developments of the FLUKA MC code and its practical applications in this field. Refinements of the FLUKA nuclear models in the therapeutic energy interval lead to an improved description of the mixed radiation field as shown in the presented benchmarks against experimental data with both 4He and 12C ion beams. Accurate description of ionization energy losses and of particle scattering and interactions lead to the excellent agreement of calculated depth–dose profiles with those measured at leading European hadron therapy centers, both with proton and ion beams. In order to support the application of FLUKA in hospital-based environments, Flair, the FLUKA graphical interface, has been enhanced with the capability of translating CT DICOM images into voxel-based computational phantoms in a fast and well-structured way. The interface is capable of importing also radiotherapy treatment data described in DICOM RT standard. In addition, the interface is equipped with an intuitive PET scanner geometry generator and automatic recording of coincidence events. Clinically, similar cases will be presented both in terms of absorbed dose and biological dose calculations describing the various available features. PMID:27242956

  9. The FLUKA Code: An Accurate Simulation Tool for Particle Therapy.

    PubMed

    Battistoni, Giuseppe; Bauer, Julia; Boehlen, Till T; Cerutti, Francesco; Chin, Mary P W; Dos Santos Augusto, Ricardo; Ferrari, Alfredo; Ortega, Pablo G; Kozłowska, Wioletta; Magro, Giuseppe; Mairani, Andrea; Parodi, Katia; Sala, Paola R; Schoofs, Philippe; Tessonnier, Thomas; Vlachoudis, Vasilis

    2016-01-01

    Monte Carlo (MC) codes are increasingly spreading in the hadrontherapy community due to their detailed description of radiation transport and interaction with matter. The suitability of a MC code for application to hadrontherapy demands accurate and reliable physical models capable of handling all components of the expected radiation field. This becomes extremely important for correctly performing not only physical but also biologically based dose calculations, especially in cases where ions heavier than protons are involved. In addition, accurate prediction of emerging secondary radiation is of utmost importance in innovative areas of research aiming at in vivo treatment verification. This contribution will address the recent developments of the FLUKA MC code and its practical applications in this field. Refinements of the FLUKA nuclear models in the therapeutic energy interval lead to an improved description of the mixed radiation field as shown in the presented benchmarks against experimental data with both (4)He and (12)C ion beams. Accurate description of ionization energy losses and of particle scattering and interactions lead to the excellent agreement of calculated depth-dose profiles with those measured at leading European hadron therapy centers, both with proton and ion beams. In order to support the application of FLUKA in hospital-based environments, Flair, the FLUKA graphical interface, has been enhanced with the capability of translating CT DICOM images into voxel-based computational phantoms in a fast and well-structured way. The interface is capable of importing also radiotherapy treatment data described in DICOM RT standard. In addition, the interface is equipped with an intuitive PET scanner geometry generator and automatic recording of coincidence events. Clinically, similar cases will be presented both in terms of absorbed dose and biological dose calculations describing the various available features. PMID:27242956

  10. Rapid molecular diagnostic tools for avian influenza

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An accurate and early diagnosis of a foreign animal disease is crucial for rapid control and eradication of an outbreak in a country previously free of the disease. Historically many animal diseases have been controlled based solely on clinical signs of disease. However with avian influenza virus ...

  11. Neuronavigation as a diagnostic tool: An innovative application.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Ian A; Chumas, Paul D

    2016-06-01

    The role of neuronavigation in tumour surgery is well established. We present an innovative use for this software, as a tool to compare ventricular size between serial sets of cranial imaging. We conclude that neuronavigation software is potentially a powerful diagnostic tool that should not be overlooked when making comparative assessments between scans. PMID:26742421

  12. PICADAR: a diagnostic predictive tool for primary ciliary dyskinesia

    PubMed Central

    Behan, Laura; Dimitrov, Borislav D.; Kuehni, Claudia E.; Hogg, Claire; Carroll, Mary; Evans, Hazel J.; Goutaki, Myrofora; Harris, Amanda; Packham, Samantha; Walker, Woolf T.

    2016-01-01

    Symptoms of primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD) are nonspecific and guidance on whom to refer for testing is limited. Diagnostic tests for PCD are highly specialised, requiring expensive equipment and experienced PCD scientists. This study aims to develop a practical clinical diagnostic tool to identify patients requiring testing. Patients consecutively referred for testing were studied. Information readily obtained from patient history was correlated with diagnostic outcome. Using logistic regression, the predictive performance of the best model was tested by receiver operating characteristic curve analyses. The model was simplified into a practical tool (PICADAR) and externally validated in a second diagnostic centre. Of 641 referrals with a definitive diagnostic outcome, 75 (12%) were positive. PICADAR applies to patients with persistent wet cough and has seven predictive parameters: full-term gestation, neonatal chest symptoms, neonatal intensive care admittance, chronic rhinitis, ear symptoms, situs inversus and congenital cardiac defect. Sensitivity and specificity of the tool were 0.90 and 0.75 for a cut-off score of 5 points. Area under the curve for the internally and externally validated tool was 0.91 and 0.87, respectively. PICADAR represents a simple diagnostic clinical prediction rule with good accuracy and validity, ready for testing in respiratory centres referring to PCD centres. PMID:26917608

  13. PICADAR: a diagnostic predictive tool for primary ciliary dyskinesia.

    PubMed

    Behan, Laura; Dimitrov, Borislav D; Kuehni, Claudia E; Hogg, Claire; Carroll, Mary; Evans, Hazel J; Goutaki, Myrofora; Harris, Amanda; Packham, Samantha; Walker, Woolf T; Lucas, Jane S

    2016-04-01

    Symptoms of primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD) are nonspecific and guidance on whom to refer for testing is limited. Diagnostic tests for PCD are highly specialised, requiring expensive equipment and experienced PCD scientists. This study aims to develop a practical clinical diagnostic tool to identify patients requiring testing.Patients consecutively referred for testing were studied. Information readily obtained from patient history was correlated with diagnostic outcome. Using logistic regression, the predictive performance of the best model was tested by receiver operating characteristic curve analyses. The model was simplified into a practical tool (PICADAR) and externally validated in a second diagnostic centre.Of 641 referrals with a definitive diagnostic outcome, 75 (12%) were positive. PICADAR applies to patients with persistent wet cough and has seven predictive parameters: full-term gestation, neonatal chest symptoms, neonatal intensive care admittance, chronic rhinitis, ear symptoms, situs inversus and congenital cardiac defect. Sensitivity and specificity of the tool were 0.90 and 0.75 for a cut-off score of 5 points. Area under the curve for the internally and externally validated tool was 0.91 and 0.87, respectively.PICADAR represents a simple diagnostic clinical prediction rule with good accuracy and validity, ready for testing in respiratory centres referring to PCD centres. PMID:26917608

  14. High accurate interpolation of NURBS tool path for CNC machine tools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Qiang; Liu, Huan; Yuan, Songmei

    2016-06-01

    Feedrate fluctuation caused by approximation errors of interpolation methods has great effects on machining quality in NURBS interpolation, but few methods can efficiently eliminate or reduce it to a satisfying level without sacrificing the computing efficiency at present. In order to solve this problem, a high accurate interpolation method for NURBS tool path is proposed. The proposed method can efficiently reduce the feedrate fluctuation by forming a quartic equation with respect to the curve parameter increment, which can be efficiently solved by analytic methods in real-time. Theoretically, the proposed method can totally eliminate the feedrate fluctuation for any 2nd degree NURBS curves and can interpolate 3rd degree NURBS curves with minimal feedrate fluctuation. Moreover, a smooth feedrate planning algorithm is also proposed to generate smooth tool motion with considering multiple constraints and scheduling errors by an efficient planning strategy. Experiments are conducted to verify the feasibility and applicability of the proposed method. This research presents a novel NURBS interpolation method with not only high accuracy but also satisfying computing efficiency.

  15. Using Automated Diagnostic Tools to Provide Energy Services

    SciTech Connect

    Brambley, Michael R.; Pratt, Robert G.

    2000-06-01

    Recently, a small number of automated diagnostic tools for building systems have become commercially available. These tools distinguish themselves from analytic software and trouble-shooting tools by automating the actual process of reaching conclusions from empirical data. Their distinction is that they produce easily-used information from (raw) data. These tools can be contrasted with tools that provide assistance in diagnosis, for example, by plotting data in various ways so performance problems can be detected and diagnosed by a knowledgeable expert. The availability of such expertise is limited and applying it manually takes considerable time. Automation reduces the time required for performance-problem detection and the associated costs.

  16. Diagnostic tools for hypertension and salt sensitivity testing

    PubMed Central

    Felder, Robin A.; White, Marquitta J.; Williams, Scott M.; Jose, Pedro A.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose of review One-third of the world’s population has hypertension and it is responsible for almost 50% of deaths from stroke or coronary heart disease. These statistics do not distinguish salt-sensitive from salt-resistant hypertension or include normotensives who are salt-sensitive even though salt sensitivity, independent of blood pressure, is a risk factor for cardiovascular and other diseases, including cancer. This review describes new personalized diagnostic tools for salt sensitivity. Recent findings The relationship between salt intake and cardiovascular risk is not linear, but rather fits a J-shaped curve relationship. Thus, a low-salt diet may not be beneficial to everyone and may paradoxically increase blood pressure in some individuals. Current surrogate markers of salt sensitivity are not adequately sensitive or specific. Tests in the urine that could be surrogate markers of salt sensitivity with a quick turn-around time include renal proximal tubule cells, exosomes, and microRNA shed in the urine. Summary Accurate testing of salt sensitivity is not only laborious but also expensive, and with low patient compliance. Patients who have normal blood pressure but are salt-sensitive cannot be diagnosed in an office setting and there are no laboratory tests for salt sensitivity. Urinary surrogate markers for salt sensitivity are being developed. PMID:23197156

  17. Kinesiophobia – Introducing a New Diagnostic Tool

    PubMed Central

    Knapik, Andrzej; Saulicz, Edward; Gnat, Rafał

    2011-01-01

    Technical development of human civilisation brings about a decrease of adaptation potential of an individual, which is directly linked to deficient motor activity. Only precise identification of factors leading to hypokinesia would make prophylactic and therapeutic actions possible. In this article, authors would like to introduce a new, original tool aiming at diagnosing limitations of motor activity in adults. They propose a synthetic diagnosis of hypokinesia in two domains: biological and psycho-social, which is based on the contemporary model of health. PMID:23487514

  18. Kinesiophobia - introducing a new diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    Knapik, Andrzej; Saulicz, Edward; Gnat, Rafał

    2011-06-01

    Technical development of human civilisation brings about a decrease of adaptation potential of an individual, which is directly linked to deficient motor activity. Only precise identification of factors leading to hypokinesia would make prophylactic and therapeutic actions possible. In this article, authors would like to introduce a new, original tool aiming at diagnosing limitations of motor activity in adults. They propose a synthetic diagnosis of hypokinesia in two domains: biological and psycho-social, which is based on the contemporary model of health. PMID:23487514

  19. Progress and limits of TSE diagnostic tools.

    PubMed

    Grassi, Jacques; Maillet, Séverine; Simon, Stéphanie; Morel, Nathalie

    2008-01-01

    Following the two "mad cow" crises of 1996 and 2000, there was an urgent need for rapid and sensitive diagnostic methods to identify animals infected with the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) agent. This stimulated research in the field of prion diagnosis and led to the establishment of numerous so-called "rapid tests" which have been in use in Europe since 2001 for monitoring at-risk populations (rendering plants) and animals slaughtered for human consumption (slaughterhouse). These rapid tests have played a critical role in the management of the mad cow crisis by allowing the removal of prion infected carcasses from the human food chain, and by allowing a precise epidemiological monitoring of the BSE epizootic. They are all based on the detection of the abnormal form of the prion protein (PrP(Sc) or PrP(res)) in brain tissues and consequently are only suitable for post-mortem diagnosis. Since it is now very clear that variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) can be transmitted by blood transfusion, the development of a blood test for the diagnosis of vCJD is a top priority. Although significant progress has been made in this direction, including the development of the protein misfolding cyclic amplification (PMCA) technology, at the time this paper was written, this objective had not yet been achieved. This is the most important challenge for the years to come in this field of prion research. PMID:18284910

  20. Peripheral Lymphadenopathy: Approach and Diagnostic Tools

    PubMed Central

    Mohseni, Shahrzad; Shojaiefard, Abolfazl; Khorgami, Zhamak; Alinejad, Shahriar; Ghorbani, Ali; Ghafouri, Ali

    2014-01-01

    Peripheral lymph nodes, located deep in the subcutaneous tissue, clean antigens from the extracellular fluid. Generally, a normal sized lymph node is less than one cm in diameter. Peripheral lymphadenopathy (LAP) is frequently due to a local or systemic, benign, self-limited, infectious disease. However, it could be a manifestation of underlying malignancy. Seventy-five percent of all LAPs are localized, with more than 50% being seen in the head and neck area. LAP may be localized or generalized. Cervical lymph nodes are involved more often than the other lymphatic regions. Generally, it is due to infections, but most of the supraclavicular lymphadenopathies are associated with malignancy. Based on different geographical areas, the etiology is various. For example, in tropical areas, tuberculosis (TB) is a main benign cause of LAP in adults and children. Complete history taking and physical examination are mandatory for diagnosis; however, laboratory tests, imaging diagnostic methods, and tissue samplings are the next steps. Tissue diagnosis by fine needle aspiration biopsy or excisional biopsy is the gold standard evaluation for LAP. We concluded that in patients with peripheral LAP, the patient’s age and environmental exposures along with a careful history taking and physical examination can help the physician to request step by step further work-up when required, including laboratory tests, imaging modalities, and tissue diagnosis, to reach an appropriate diagnosis. PMID:24753638

  1. Saliva as a diagnostic tool for oral and systemic diseases

    PubMed Central

    Javaid, Mohammad A.; Ahmed, Ahad S.; Durand, Robert; Tran, Simon D.

    2015-01-01

    Early disease detection is not only vital to reduce disease severity and prevent complications, but also critical to increase success rate of therapy. Saliva has been studied extensively as a potential diagnostic tool over the last decade due to its ease and non-invasive accessibility along with its abundance of biomarkers, such as genetic material and proteins. This review will update the clinician on recent advances in salivary biomarkers to diagnose autoimmune diseases (Sjogren's syndrome, cystic fibrosis), cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, HIV, oral cancer, caries and periodontal diseases. Considering their accuracy, efficacy, ease of use and cost effectiveness, salivary diagnostic tests will be available in dental offices. It is expected that the advent of sensitive and specific salivary diagnostic tools and the establishment of defined guidelines and results following rigorous testing will allow salivary diagnostics to be used as chair-side tests for several oral and systemic diseases in the near future. PMID:26937373

  2. DEVICE CONTROL TOOL FOR CEBAF BEAM DIAGNOSTICS SOFTWARE

    SciTech Connect

    Pavel Chevtsov

    2008-02-11

    Continuously monitoring the beam quality in the CEBAF accelerator, a variety of beam diagnostics software created at Jefferson Lab makes a significant contribution to very high availability of the machine for nuclear physics experiments. The interface between this software and beam instrumentation hardware components is provided by a device control tool, which is optimized for beam diagnostics tasks. As a part of the device/driver development framework at Jefferson Lab, this tool is very easy to support and extend to integrate new beam instrumentation components. All device control functions are based on the configuration (ASCII text) files that completely define the used hardware interface standards (CAMAC, VME, RS-232, GPIB, etc.) and communication protocols. The paper presents the main elements of the device control tool for beam diagnostics software at Jefferson Lab.

  3. Diagnostic methodology is critical for accurately determining the prevalence of ichthyophonus infections in wild fish populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kocan, R.; Dolan, H.; Hershberger, P.

    2011-01-01

    Several different techniques have been employed to detect and identify Ichthyophonus spp. in infected fish hosts; these include macroscopic observation, microscopic examination of tissue squashes, histological evaluation, in vitro culture, and molecular techniques. Examination of the peer-reviewed literature revealed that when more than 1 diagnostic method is used, they often result in significantly different results; for example, when in vitro culture was used to identify infected trout in an experimentally exposed population, 98.7% of infected trout were detected, but when standard histology was used to confirm known infected tissues from wild salmon, it detected ~50% of low-intensity infections and ~85% of high-intensity infections. Other studies on different species reported similar differences. When we examined a possible mechanism to explain the disparity between different diagnostic techniques, we observed non-random distribution of the parasite in 3-dimensionally visualized tissue sections from infected hosts, thus providing a possible explanation for the different sensitivities of commonly used diagnostic techniques. Based on experimental evidence and a review of the peer-reviewed literature, we have concluded that in vitro culture is currently the most accurate diagnostic technique for determining infection prevalence of Ichthyophonus, particularly when the exposure history of the population is not known.

  4. Diagnostic methodology is critical for accurately determining the prevalence of Ichthyophonus infections in wild fish populations.

    PubMed

    Kocan, Richard; Dolan, Heather; Hershberger, Paul

    2011-04-01

    Several different techniques have been employed to detect and identify Ichthyophonus spp. in infected fish hosts; these include macroscopic observation, microscopic examination of tissue squashes, histological evaluation, in vitro culture, and molecular techniques. Examination of the peer-reviewed literature revealed that when more than 1 diagnostic method is used, they often result in significantly different results; for example, when in vitro culture was used to identify infected trout in an experimentally exposed population, 98.7% of infected trout were detected, but when standard histology was used to confirm known infected tissues from wild salmon, it detected ~50% of low-intensity infections and ~85% of high-intensity infections. Other studies on different species reported similar differences. When we examined a possible mechanism to explain the disparity between different diagnostic techniques, we observed non-random distribution of the parasite in 3-dimensionally visualized tissue sections from infected hosts, thus providing a possible explanation for the different sensitivities of commonly used diagnostic techniques. Based on experimental evidence and a review of the peer-reviewed literature, we have concluded that in vitro culture is currently the most accurate diagnostic technique for determining infection prevalence of Ichthyophonus , particularly when the exposure history of the population is not known. PMID:21506773

  5. Cell-Free DNA as a Diagnostic Tool for Human Parasitic Infections.

    PubMed

    Weerakoon, Kosala G; McManus, Donald P

    2016-05-01

    Parasites often cause devastating diseases and represent a significant public health and economic burden. More accurate and convenient diagnostic tools are needed in support of parasite control programmes in endemic regions, and for rapid point-of-care diagnosis in nonendemic areas. The detection of cell-free DNA (cfDNA) is a relatively new concept that is being applied in the current armamentarium of diagnostics. Here, we review the application of cfDNA detection with nucleic acid amplification tests for the diagnosis and evaluation of different human parasitic infections and highlight the significant benefits of the approach using non-invasive clinical samples. PMID:26847654

  6. A Tool for Helping Veterinary Students Learn Diagnostic Problem Solving.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Danielson, Jared A.; Bender, Holly S.; Mills, Eric M.; Vermeer, Pamela J.; Lockee, Barbara B.

    2003-01-01

    Describes the result of implementing the Problem List Generator, a computer-based tool designed to help clinical pathology veterinary students learn diagnostic problem solving. Findings suggest that student problem solving ability improved, because students identified all relevant data before providing a solution. (MES)

  7. Hair: A Diagnostic Tool to Complement Blood Serum and Urine.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maugh, Thomas H., II

    1978-01-01

    Trace elements and some drugs can be identified in hair and it seems likely that other organic chemicals will be identifiable in the future. Since hair is so easily collected, stored, and analyzed it promises to be an ideal complement to serum and urine analysis as a diagnostic tool. (BB)

  8. Using Copula Distributions to Support More Accurate Imaging-Based Diagnostic Classifiers for Neuropsychiatric Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Bansal, Ravi; Hao, Xuejun; Liu, Jun; Peterson, Bradley S.

    2014-01-01

    Many investigators have tried to apply machine learning techniques to magnetic resonance images (MRIs) of the brain in order to diagnose neuropsychiatric disorders. Usually the number of brain imaging measures (such as measures of cortical thickness and measures of local surface morphology) derived from the MRIs (i.e., their dimensionality) has been large (e.g. >10) relative to the number of participants who provide the MRI data (<100). Sparse data in a high dimensional space increases the variability of the classification rules that machine learning algorithms generate, thereby limiting the validity, reproducibility, and generalizability of those classifiers. The accuracy and stability of the classifiers can improve significantly if the multivariate distributions of the imaging measures can be estimated accurately. To accurately estimate the multivariate distributions using sparse data, we propose to estimate first the univariate distributions of imaging data and then combine them using a Copula to generate more accurate estimates of their multivariate distributions. We then sample the estimated Copula distributions to generate dense sets of imaging measures and use those measures to train classifiers. We hypothesize that the dense sets of brain imaging measures will generate classifiers that are stable to variations in brain imaging measures, thereby improving the reproducibility, validity, and generalizability of diagnostic classification algorithms in imaging datasets from clinical populations. In our experiments, we used both computer-generated and real-world brain imaging datasets to assess the accuracy of multivariate Copula distributions in estimating the corresponding multivariate distributions of real-world imaging data. Our experiments showed that diagnostic classifiers generated using imaging measures sampled from the Copula were significantly more accurate and more reproducible than were the classifiers generated using either the real-world imaging

  9. Polymerase chain reaction: A molecular diagnostic tool in periodontology.

    PubMed

    Maheaswari, Rajendran; Kshirsagar, Jaishree Tukaram; Lavanya, Nallasivam

    2016-01-01

    This review discusses the principles of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and its application as a diagnostic tool in periodontology. The relevant MEDLINE and PubMed indexed journals were searched manually and electronically by typing PCR, applications of PCR, PCR in periodontics, polymorphism studies in periodontitis, and molecular techniques in periodontology. The searches were limited to articles in English language and the articles describing PCR process and its relation to periodontology were collected and used to prepare a concise review. PCR has now become a standard diagnostic and research tool in periodontology. Various studies reveal that its sensitivity and specificity allow it as a rapid, efficient method of detecting, identifying, and quantifying organism. Different immune and inflammatory markers can be identified at the mRNA expression level, and also the determination of genetic polymorphisms, thus providing the deeper insight into the mechanisms underlying the periodontal disease. PMID:27143822

  10. Diagnosis demystified: CT as diagnostic tool in endodontics

    PubMed Central

    Shruthi, Nagaraja; Sreenivasa Murthy, B V; Sundaresh, K J; Mallikarjuna, Rachappa

    2013-01-01

    Diagnosis in endodontics is usually based on clinical and radiographical presentations, which are only empirical methods. The role of healing profession is to apply knowledge and skills towards maintaining and restoring the patient's health. Recent advances in imaging technologies have added to correct interpretation and diagnosis. CT is proving to be an effective tool in solving endodontic mysteries through its three-dimensional visualisation. CT imaging offers many diagnostic advantages to produce reconstructed images in selected projection and low-contrast resolution far superior to that of all other X-ray imaging modalities. This case report is an endeavour towards effective treatment planning of cases with root fracture, root resorption using spiral CT as an adjuvant diagnostic tool. PMID:23814212

  11. Polymerase chain reaction: A molecular diagnostic tool in periodontology

    PubMed Central

    Maheaswari, Rajendran; Kshirsagar, Jaishree Tukaram; Lavanya, Nallasivam

    2016-01-01

    This review discusses the principles of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and its application as a diagnostic tool in periodontology. The relevant MEDLINE and PubMed indexed journals were searched manually and electronically by typing PCR, applications of PCR, PCR in periodontics, polymorphism studies in periodontitis, and molecular techniques in periodontology. The searches were limited to articles in English language and the articles describing PCR process and its relation to periodontology were collected and used to prepare a concise review. PCR has now become a standard diagnostic and research tool in periodontology. Various studies reveal that its sensitivity and specificity allow it as a rapid, efficient method of detecting, identifying, and quantifying organism. Different immune and inflammatory markers can be identified at the mRNA expression level, and also the determination of genetic polymorphisms, thus providing the deeper insight into the mechanisms underlying the periodontal disease. PMID:27143822

  12. Ascitic Fluid Calprotectin and Serum Procalcitonin as Accurate Diagnostic Markers for Spontaneous Bacterial Peritonitis

    PubMed Central

    Abdel-Razik, Ahmed; Mousa, Nasser; Elhammady, Dina; Elhelaly, Rania; Elzehery, Rasha; Elbaz, Sherif; Eissa, Mohamed; El-Wakeel, Niveen; Eldars, Waleed

    2016-01-01

    Background/Aims The diagnosis of spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP) is based on a polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) exceeding 250/μL in ascitic fluid. The aim of the study was to evaluate serum procalcitonin and ascitic fluid calprotectin as accurate diagnostic markers for detecting SBP. Methods Seventy-nine patients with cirrhotic ascites were included. They were divided into a SBP group, including 52 patients, and a non-SBP group of 27 patients. Serum procalcitonin, ascitic calprotectin, and serum and ascitic levels of tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) and interleukin 6 (IL-6) were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Results Serum procalcitonin and ascitic calprotectin were significantly higher in SBP patients than in non-SBP patients. Significant increases in both serum and ascitic levels of TNF-α and IL-6 were observed in SBP patients versus non-SBP patients. At a cutoff value of 0.94 ng/mL, serum procalcitonin had 94.3% sensitivity and 91.8% specificity for detecting SBP. In addition, at a cutoff value of 445 ng/mL, ascitic calprotectin had 95.4% sensitivity and 85.2% specificity for detecting SBP. Both were positively correlated with ascitic fluid proteins, PMN count, TNF-α, and IL-6. Conclusions According to our findings, determination of serum procalcitonin levels and ascitic calprotectin appears to provide satisfactory diagnostic markers for the diagnosis of SBP. PMID:26601826

  13. MicroRNA-200 Family Profile: A Promising Ancillary Tool for Accurate Cancer Diagnosis

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xiaodong; Zhang, Jianhua; Xie, Botao; Li, Hao; Shen, Jihong; Chen, Jianheng

    2016-01-01

    Cancer is one of the most threatening diseases in the world and great interests have been paid to discover accurate and noninvasive methods for cancer diagnosis. The value of microRNA-200 (miRNA-200, miR-200) family has been revealed in many studies. However, the results from various studies were inconsistent, and thus a meta-analysis was designed and performed to assess the overall value of miRNA200 in cancer diagnosis. Relevant studies were searched electronically from the following databases: PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, the Cochrane Library, and Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure. Keyword combined with “miR-200,” “cancer,” and “diagnosis” in any fields was used for searching relevant studies. Then, the pooled sensitivity, specificity, area under the curve (AUC), and partial AUC were calculated using the random-effects model. Heterogeneity among individual studies was also explored by subgroup analyses. A total of 28 studies from 18 articles with an overall sample size of 3676 subjects (2097 patients and 1579 controls) were included in this meta-analysis. The overall sensitivity and specificity with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) are 0.709 (95% CI: 0.657–0.755) and 0.667 (95% CI: 0.617–0.713), respectively. Additionally, AUC and partial AUC for the pooled data is 0.735 and 0.627, respectively. Subgroup analyses revealed that using miRNA-200 family for cancer diagnosis is more effective in white than in Asian ethnic groups. In addition, cancer diagnosis by miRNA using circulating specimen is more effective than that using noncirculating specimen. Finally, miRNA is more accurate in diagnosing endometrial cancer than other types of cancer, and some miRNA family members (miR-200b and miR-429) have superior diagnostic accuracy than other miR-200 family members. In conclusion, the profiling of miRNA-200 family is likely to be a valuable tool in cancer detection and diagnosis. PMID:26618619

  14. Saliva-Based Biosensors: Noninvasive Monitoring Tool for Clinical Diagnostics

    PubMed Central

    Malon, Radha S. P.; Balakrishnan, Malarvili; Córcoles, Emma P.

    2014-01-01

    Saliva is increasingly recognised as an attractive diagnostic fluid. The presence of various disease signalling salivary biomarkers that accurately reflect normal and disease states in humans and the sampling benefits compared to blood sampling are some of the reasons for this recognition. This explains the burgeoning research field in assay developments and technological advancements for the detection of various salivary biomarkers to improve clinical diagnosis, management, and treatment. This paper reviews the significance of salivary biomarkers for clinical diagnosis and therapeutic applications, with focus on the technologies and biosensing platforms that have been reported for screening these biomarkers. PMID:25276835

  15. Comparative guide to emerging diagnostic tools for large commercial HVAC systems

    SciTech Connect

    Friedman, Hannah; Piette, Mary Ann

    2001-05-01

    This guide compares emerging diagnostic software tools that aid detection and diagnosis of operational problems for large HVAC systems. We have evaluated six tools for use with energy management control system (EMCS) or other monitoring data. The diagnostic tools summarize relevant performance metrics, display plots for manual analysis, and perform automated diagnostic procedures. Our comparative analysis presents nine summary tables with supporting explanatory text and includes sample diagnostic screens for each tool.

  16. Tomography as a promising diagnostic tool for plasma turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujisawa, A.; Nagashima, Y.; Inagaki, S.; Onchi, T.; Ohshima, S.; Shimizu, A.

    2016-02-01

    A system for plasma turbulence tomography has been developed in a linear cylindrical plasma as a prototype with aiming at future application on toroidal plasma of higher temperature. This paper describes the diagnostic system in both aspects of the soft- and hardware, and reports the first results of tomographic reconstruction that can successfully produce local emission and its fluctuations. In the reconstruction process, two dimensional view of plasma is obtained for approximately 0.6 ms in every sampling time of 1 μs using parallel processing of 120 cores with 10 personal computers. The results include the steady state analysis of local fluctuation power spectra using fast Fourier transform, analysis of temporal behavior of fluctuation power spectra with wavelet transform, and analyses of the structural deformation or pattern of local plasma emission, demonstrating that the success of tomography as a promising diagnostic tool for plasma turbulence.

  17. Development of Doppler Global Velocimetry as a Flow Diagnostics Tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meyers, James F.

    1995-01-01

    The development of Doppler global velocimetry is described from its inception to its use as a flow diagnostics tool. Its evolution is traced from an elementary one-component laboratory prototype, to a full three-component configuration operating in a wind tunnel at focal distances exceeding 15 m. As part of the developmental process, several wind tunnel flow field investigations were conducted. These included supersonic flow measurements about an oblique shock, subsonic and supersonic measurements of the vortex flow above a delta wing, and three-component measurements of a high-speed jet.

  18. New V and V Tools for Diagnostic Modeling Environment (DME)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pecheur, Charles; Nelson, Stacy; Merriam, Marshall (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The purpose of this report is to provide correctness and reliability criteria for verification and validation (V&V) of Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) Diagnostic Modeling Environment, describe current NASA Ames Research Center tools for V&V of Model Based Reasoning systems, and discuss the applicability of Advanced V&V to DME. This report is divided into the following three sections: (1) correctness and reliability criteria; (2) tools for V&V of Model Based Reasoning; and (3) advanced V&V applicable to DME. The Executive Summary includes an overview of the main points from each section. Supporting details, diagrams, figures, and other information are included in subsequent sections. A glossary, acronym list, appendices, and references are included at the end of this report.

  19. Diagnostic tools for mixing models of stream water chemistry

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hooper, R.P.

    2003-01-01

    Mixing models provide a useful null hypothesis against which to evaluate processes controlling stream water chemical data. Because conservative mixing of end-members with constant concentration is a linear process, a number of simple mathematical and multivariate statistical methods can be applied to this problem. Although mixing models have been most typically used in the context of mixing soil and groundwater end-members, an extension of the mathematics of mixing models is presented that assesses the "fit" of a multivariate data set to a lower dimensional mixing subspace without the need for explicitly identified end-members. Diagnostic tools are developed to determine the approximate rank of the data set and to assess lack of fit of the data. This permits identification of processes that violate the assumptions of the mixing model and can suggest the dominant processes controlling stream water chemical variation. These same diagnostic tools can be used to assess the fit of the chemistry of one site into the mixing subspace of a different site, thereby permitting an assessment of the consistency of controlling end-members across sites. This technique is applied to a number of sites at the Panola Mountain Research Watershed located near Atlanta, Georgia.

  20. Insulator-based dielectrophoretic diagnostic tool for babesiosis.

    PubMed

    Adekanmbi, Ezekiel O; Ueti, Massaro W; Rinaldi, Brady; Suarez, Carlos E; Srivastava, Soumya K

    2016-05-01

    Babesia species are obligate intraerythrocytic tick-borne protozoan parasites that are the etiologic agents of babesiosis, a potentially life-threatening, malaria-like illness in humans and animals. Babesia-infected people have been known to suffer from complications including liver problems, severe hemolytic anemia, and kidney failure. As reported by the Food and Drug Administration, 38% of mortality cases observed in transfusion recipients were associated with transfusion transmitted diseases of which babesiosis is the chief culprit. As of now, no tests have been licensed yet for screening blood donors for babesiosis. Current diagnostic tools for babesiosis including enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, fluorescence in situ hybridization, and polymerase chain reaction are expensive and burdened with multifarious shortcomings. In this research, a low-cost, high-specificity, quick, and easy-to-use insulator-based dielectrophoretic diagnostic tool is developed for characterizing and concentrating Babesia-infected cells in their homogenous mixture with healthy cell population. In this work, a mixture of Babesia-infected (varying parasitemia) and healthy red blood cells (RBCs or erythrocytes) was exposed to non-uniform electric fields in a fabricated microfluidic platform to manipulate and sort the Babesia-infected cells within a minute. At DC voltage configurations of 10 V and 0/6 V in the inlet and the two outlet channels, respectively, the diseased cells were seen to flow in a direction different from the healthy RBCs. Bright field and fluorescence microscopy were utilized to present qualitative differentiation of the healthy erythrocytes from the infected cells. The proposed micro device platform was able to enrich RBCs from 0.1% to ∼70% parasitemia. This device, when finally developed into a point-of-care diagnostic chip, would enhance the detection of Babesia-infected erythrocytes and as well serve as a precursor to babesiosis vaccine development. PMID

  1. CgWind: A high-order accurate simulation tool for wind turbines and wind farms

    SciTech Connect

    Chand, K K; Henshaw, W D; Lundquist, K A; Singer, M A

    2010-02-22

    CgWind is a high-fidelity large eddy simulation (LES) tool designed to meet the modeling needs of wind turbine and wind park engineers. This tool combines several advanced computational technologies in order to model accurately the complex and dynamic nature of wind energy applications. The composite grid approach provides high-quality structured grids for the efficient implementation of high-order accurate discretizations of the incompressible Navier-Stokes equations. Composite grids also provide a natural mechanism for modeling bodies in relative motion and complex geometry. Advanced algorithms such as matrix-free multigrid, compact discretizations and approximate factorization will allow CgWind to perform highly resolved calculations efficiently on a wide class of computing resources. Also in development are nonlinear LES subgrid-scale models required to simulate the many interacting scales present in large wind turbine applications. This paper outlines our approach, the current status of CgWind and future development plans.

  2. Tools for Accurate and Efficient Analysis of Complex Evolutionary Mechanisms in Microbial Genomes. Final Report

    SciTech Connect

    Nakhleh, Luay

    2014-03-12

    I proposed to develop computationally efficient tools for accurate detection and reconstruction of microbes' complex evolutionary mechanisms, thus enabling rapid and accurate annotation, analysis and understanding of their genomes. To achieve this goal, I proposed to address three aspects. (1) Mathematical modeling. A major challenge facing the accurate detection of HGT is that of distinguishing between these two events on the one hand and other events that have similar "effects." I proposed to develop a novel mathematical approach for distinguishing among these events. Further, I proposed to develop a set of novel optimization criteria for the evolutionary analysis of microbial genomes in the presence of these complex evolutionary events. (2) Algorithm design. In this aspect of the project, I proposed to develop an array of e cient and accurate algorithms for analyzing microbial genomes based on the formulated optimization criteria. Further, I proposed to test the viability of the criteria and the accuracy of the algorithms in an experimental setting using both synthetic as well as biological data. (3) Software development. I proposed the nal outcome to be a suite of software tools which implements the mathematical models as well as the algorithms developed.

  3. Prediction of liver cirrhosis, using diagnostic imaging tools

    PubMed Central

    Yeom, Suk Keu; Lee, Chang Hee; Cha, Sang Hoon; Park, Cheol Min

    2015-01-01

    Early diagnosis of liver cirrhosis is important. Ultrasound-guided liver biopsy is the gold standard for diagnosis of liver cirrhosis. However, its invasiveness and sampling bias limit the applicability of the method. Basic imaging for the diagnosis of liver cirrhosis has developed over the last few decades, enabling early detection of morphological changes of the liver by ultrasonography (US), computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). They are also accurate diagnostic methods for advanced liver cirrhosis, for which early diagnosis is difficult. There are a number of ways to compensate for this difficulty, including texture analysis to more closely identify the homogeneity of hepatic parenchyma, elastography to measure the stiffness and elasticity of the liver, and perfusion studies to determine the blood flow volume, transit time, and velocity. Amongst these methods, elastography using US and MRI was found to be slightly easier, faster, and able to provide an accurate diagnosis. Early diagnosis of liver cirrhosis using MRI or US elastography is therefore a realistic alternative, but further research is still needed. PMID:26301049

  4. Quantitative MRI as a diagnostic tool of intervertebral disc matrix composition and integrity

    PubMed Central

    Mwale, Fackson; Iatridis, James C.

    2008-01-01

    Degenerative disc disease has been implicated as a major component of spine pathology. The current major clinical procedures for treating disc degeneration have been disappointing, because of altered spinal mechanics leading to subsequent degeneration at adjacent disc levels. Disc pathology treatment is shifting toward prevention and treatment of underlying etiologic processes at the level of the disc matrix composition and integrity and the biomechanics of the disc. The ability to perform such treatment relies on one’s ability to accurately and objectively assess the state of the matrix and the effectiveness of treatment by a non-invasive technique. In this review, we will summarize our advances in efforts to develop an objective, accurate, non-invasive diagnostic tool (quantitative MRI) in the detection and quantification of matrix composition and integrity and of biomechanical changes in early intervertebral disc degeneration. PMID:19005703

  5. Use of Monocrystalline Silicon as Tool Material for Highly Accurate Blanking of Thin Metal Foils

    SciTech Connect

    Hildering, Sven; Engel, Ulf; Merklein, Marion

    2011-05-04

    The trend towards miniaturisation of metallic mass production components combined with increased component functionality is still unbroken. Manufacturing these components by forming and blanking offers economical and ecological advantages combined with the needed accuracy. The complexity of producing tools with geometries below 50 {mu}m by conventional manufacturing methods becomes disproportional higher. Expensive serial finishing operations are required to achieve an adequate surface roughness combined with accurate geometry details. A novel approach for producing such tools is the use of advanced etching technologies for monocrystalline silicon that are well-established in the microsystems technology. High-precision vertical geometries with a width down to 5 {mu}m are possible. The present study shows a novel concept using this potential for the blanking of thin copper foils with monocrystallline silicon as a tool material. A self-contained machine-tool with compact outer dimensions was designed to avoid tensile stresses in the brittle silicon punch by an accurate, careful alignment of the punch, die and metal foil. A microscopic analysis of the monocrystalline silicon punch shows appropriate properties regarding flank angle, edge geometry and surface quality for the blanking process. Using a monocrystalline silicon punch with a width of 70 {mu}m blanking experiments on as-rolled copper foils with a thickness of 20 {mu}m demonstrate the general applicability of this material for micro production processes.

  6. Psychological autopsy studies as diagnostic tools: are they methodologically flawed?

    PubMed

    Hjelmeland, Heidi; Dieserud, Gudrun; Dyregrov, Kari; Knizek, Birthe L; Leenaars, Antoon A

    2012-08-01

    One of the most established "truths" in suicidology is that almost all (90% or more) of those who kill themselves suffer from one or more mental disorders, and a causal link between the two is implied. Psychological autopsy (PA) studies constitute one main evidence base for this conclusion. However, there has been little reflection on the reliability and validity of this method. For example, psychiatric diagnoses are assigned to people who have died by suicide by interviewing a few of the relatives and/or friends, often many years after the suicide. In this article, we scrutinize PA studies with particular focus on the diagnostic process and demonstrate that they cannot constitute a valid evidence base for a strong relationship between mental disorders and suicide. We show that most questions asked to assign a diagnosis are impossible to answer reliably by proxies, and thus, one cannot validly make conclusions. Thus, as a diagnostic tool psychological autopsies should now be abandoned. Instead, we recommend qualitative approaches focusing on the understanding of suicide beyond mental disorders, where narratives from a relatively high number of informants around each suicide are systematically analyzed in terms of the informants' relationships with the deceased. PMID:24563941

  7. An Early Diagnostic Tool for Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Kambiz, Shoista; van Neck, Johan W.; Cosgun, Saniye G.; van Velzen, Marit H. N.; Janssen, Joop A. M. J. L.; Avazverdi, Naim; Hovius, Steven E. R.; Walbeehm, Erik T.

    2015-01-01

    The skin’s rewarming rate of diabetic patients is used as a diagnostic tool for early diagnosis of diabetic neuropathy. At present, the relationship between microvascular changes in the skin and diabetic neuropathy is unclear in streptozotocin (STZ) diabetic rats. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the skin rewarming rate in diabetic rats is related to microvascular changes and whether this is accompanied by changes observed in classical diagnostic methods for diabetic peripheral neuropathy. Computer-assisted infrared thermography was used to assess the rewarming rate after cold exposure on the plantar skin of STZ diabetic rats’ hind paws. Peripheral neuropathy was determined by the density of intra-epidermal nerve fibers (IENFs), mechanical sensitivity, and electrophysiological recordings. Data were obtained in diabetic rats at four, six, and eight weeks after the induction of diabetes and in controls. Four weeks after the induction of diabetes, a delayed rewarming rate, decreased skin blood flow and decreased density of IENFs were observed. However, the mechanical hyposensitivity and decreased motor nerve conduction velocity (MNCV) developed 6 and 8 weeks after the induction of diabetes. Our study shows that the skin rewarming rate is related to microvascular changes in diabetic rats. Moreover, the skin rewarming rate is a non-invasive method that provides more information for an earlier diagnosis of peripheral neuropathy than the classical monofilament test and MNCV in STZ induced diabetic rats. PMID:25984949

  8. Wavelet analysis as a nonstationary plasma fluctuation diagnostic tool

    SciTech Connect

    Santoso, S.; Powers, E.J.; Ouroua, A.; Heard, J.W.; Bengtson, R.D.

    1996-12-31

    Analysis of nonstationary plasma fluctuation data has been a long-time challenge for the plasma diagnostic community. For this reason, in this paper the authors present and apply wavelet transforms as a new diagnostic tool to analyze nonstationary plasma fluctuation data. Unlike the Fourier transform, which represents a given signal globally without temporal resolution, the wavelet transform provides a local representation of the given signal in the time-scale domain. The fundamental concepts and multiresolution properties of wavelet transforms, along with a brief comparison with the short-time Fourier transform, are presented in this paper. The selection of a prototype wavelet or a mother wavelet is also discussed. Digital implementation of wavelet spectral analysis, which include time-scale power spectra and scale power spectra are described. The efficacy of the wavelet approach is demonstrated by analyzing transient broadband electrostatic potential fluctuations inside the inversion radius of sawtoothing TEXT-U plasmas during electron cyclotron resonance heating. The potential signals are collected using a 2 MeV heavy ion beam probe.

  9. Laser metrology — a diagnostic tool in automotive development processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beeck, Manfred-Andreas; Hentschel, Werner

    2000-08-01

    Laser measurement techniques are widely used in automotive development processes. Applications at Volkswagen are presented where laser metrology works as a diagnostic tool for analysing and optimising complex coupled processes inside and between automotive components and structures such as the reduction of a vehicle's interior or outer acoustic noise, including brake noise, and the combustion analysis for diesel and gasoline engines to further reduce fuel consumption and pollution. Pulsed electronic speckle pattern interferometry (ESPI) and holographic interferometry are used for analysing the knocking behaviour of modern engines and for correct positioning of knocking sensors. Holographic interferometry shows up the vibrational behaviour of brake components and their interaction during braking, and allows optimisation for noise-free brake systems. Scanning laser vibrometry analyses structure-born noise of a whole car body for the optimisation of its interior acoustical behaviour.Modern engine combustion concepts such as in direct-injection (DI) gasoline and diesel engines benefit from laser diagnostic tools which permit deeper insight into the in-cylinder processes such as flow generation, fuel injection and spray formation, atomisation and mixing, ignition and combustion, and formation and reduction of pollutants. The necessary optical access inside a cylinder is realised by so-called 'transparent engines' allowing measurements nearly during the whole engine cycle. Measurement techniques and results on double-pulse particle image velocimetry (PIV) with a frequency-doubled YAG laser for in-cylinder flow analysis are presented, as well as Mie-scattering on droplets using a copper vapour laser combined with high-speed filming, and laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) with an excimer laser for spray and fuel vapour analysis.

  10. Hospital discharge diagnostic and procedure codes for upper gastro-intestinal cancer: how accurate are they?

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Population-level health administrative datasets such as hospital discharge data are used increasingly to evaluate health services and outcomes of care. However information about the accuracy of Australian discharge data in identifying cancer, associated procedures and comorbidity is limited. The Admitted Patients Data Collection (APDC) is a census of inpatient hospital discharges in the state of New South Wales (NSW). Our aim was to assess the accuracy of the APDC in identifying upper gastro-intestinal (upper GI) cancer cases, procedures for associated curative resection and comorbidities at the time of admission compared to data abstracted from medical records (the ‘gold standard’). Methods We reviewed the medical records of 240 patients with an incident upper GI cancer diagnosis derived from a clinical database in one NSW area health service from July 2006 to June 2007. Extracted case record data was matched to APDC discharge data to determine sensitivity, positive predictive value (PPV) and agreement between the two data sources (κ-coefficient). Results The accuracy of the APDC diagnostic codes in identifying site-specific incident cancer ranged from 80-95% sensitivity. This was comparable to the accuracy of APDC procedure codes in identifying curative resection for upper GI cancer. PPV ranged from 42-80% for cancer diagnosis and 56-93% for curative surgery. Agreement between the data sources was >0.72 for most cancer diagnoses and curative resections. However, APDC discharge data was less accurate in reporting common comorbidities - for each condition, sensitivity ranged from 9-70%, whilst agreement ranged from κ = 0.64 for diabetes down to κ < 0.01 for gastro-oesophageal reflux disorder. Conclusions Identifying incident cases of upper GI cancer and curative resection from hospital administrative data is satisfactory but under-ascertained. Linkage of multiple population-health datasets is advisable to maximise case ascertainment and

  11. New advanced radio diagnostics tools for Space Weather Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krankowski, A.; Rothkaehl, H.; Atamaniuk, B.; Morawski, M.; Zakharenkova, I.; Cherniak, I.; Otmianowska-Mazur, K.

    2013-12-01

    To give a more detailed and complete understanding of physical plasma processes that govern the solar-terrestrial space, and to develop qualitative and quantitative models of the magnetosphere-ionosphere-thermosphere coupling, it is necessary to design and build the next generation of instruments for space diagnostics and monitoring. Novel ground- based wide-area sensor networks, such as the LOFAR (Low Frequency Array) radar facility, comprising wide band, and vector-sensing radio receivers and multi-spacecraft plasma diagnostics should help solve outstanding problems of space physics and describe long-term environmental changes. The LOw Frequency ARray - LOFAR - is a new fully digital radio telescope designed for frequencies between 30 MHz and 240 MHz located in Europe. The three new LOFAR stations will be installed until summer 2015 in Poland. The LOFAR facilities in Poland will be distributed among three sites: Lazy (East of Krakow), Borowiec near Poznan and Baldy near Olsztyn. All they will be connected via PIONIER dedicated links to Poznan. Each site will host one LOFAR station (96 high-band+96 low-band antennas). They will most time work as a part of European network, however, when less charged, they can operate as a national network The new digital radio frequency analyzer (RFA) on board the low-orbiting RELEC satellite was designed to monitor and investigate the ionospheric plasma properties. This two-point ground-based and topside ionosphere-located space plasma diagnostic can be a useful new tool for monitoring and diagnosing turbulent plasma properties. The RFA on board the RELEC satellite is the first in a series of experiments which is planned to be launched into the near-Earth environment. In order to improve and validate the large scales and small scales ionospheric structures we will used the GPS observations collected at IGS/EPN network employed to reconstruct diurnal variations of TEC using all satellite passes over individual GPS stations and the

  12. Evaluation of free non-diagnostic DICOM software tools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liao, Wei; Deserno, Thomas M.; Spitzer, Klaus

    2008-03-01

    A variety of software exists to interpret files or directories compliant to the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) standard and display them as individual images or volume rendered objects. Some of them offer further processing and analysis features. The surveys that have been published so far are partly not up-to-date anymore, and neither a detailed description of the software functions nor a comprehensive comparison is given. This paper aims at evaluation and comparison of freely available, non-diagnostic DICOM software with respect to the following aspects: (i) data import; (ii) data export; (iii) header viewing; (iv) 2D image viewing; (v) 3D volume viewing; (vi) support; (vii) portability; (viii) workability; and (ix) usability. In total, 21 tools were included: 3D Slicer, AMIDE, BioImage Suite, DicomWorks, EViewBox, ezDICOM, FPImage, ImageJ, JiveX, Julius, MedImaView, MedINRIA, MicroView, MIPAV, MRIcron, Osiris, PMSDView, Syngo FastView, TomoVision, UniViewer, and XMedCon. Our results in table form can ease the selection of appropriate DICOM software tools. In particular, we discuss use cases for the inexperienced user, data conversion, and volume rendering, and suggest Syngo FastView or PMSDView, DicomWorks or XMedCon, and ImageJ or UniViewer, respectively.

  13. Social network diagnostics: a tool for monitoring group interventions

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Many behavioral interventions designed to improve health outcomes are delivered in group settings. To date, however, group interventions have not been evaluated to determine if the groups generate interaction among members and how changes in group interaction may affect program outcomes at the individual or group level. Methods This article presents a model and practical tool for monitoring how social ties and social structure are changing within the group during program implementation. The approach is based on social network analysis and has two phases: collecting network measurements at strategic intervention points to determine if group dynamics are evolving in ways anticipated by the intervention, and providing the results back to the group leader to guide implementation next steps. This process aims to initially increase network connectivity and ultimately accelerate the diffusion of desirable behaviors through the new network. This article presents the Social Network Diagnostic Tool and, as proof of concept, pilot data collected during the formative phase of a childhood obesity intervention. Results The number of reported advice partners and discussion partners increased during program implementation. Density, the number of ties among people in the network expressed as a percentage of all possible ties, increased from 0.082 to 0.182 (p < 0.05) in the advice network, and from 0.027 to 0.055 (p > 0.05) in the discussion network. Conclusions The observed two-fold increase in network density represents a significant shift in advice partners over the intervention period. Using the Social Network Tool to empirically guide program activities of an obesity intervention was feasible. PMID:24083343

  14. Addiction screening and diagnostic tools: 'Refuting' and 'unmasking' claims to legitimacy.

    PubMed

    Dwyer, Robyn; Fraser, Suzanne

    2015-12-01

    Human practices of all kinds - substance use, gambling, sex, even eating - are increasingly being reframed through the language of addiction. This 'addicting' of contemporary society is achieved, in part, through the screening and diagnostic tools intended to identify and measure addiction. These tools are a key element in the expert knowledge-making through which realities of addiction emerge. Promoted as objective and accurate, the tools are given legitimacy through application of scientific validation techniques. In this article, we critically examine the operations of these validation techniques as applied to substance addiction tools. Framed by feminist and other scholarship that decentres the epistemological guarantees of objectivity and validity, we structure our analysis using Ian Hacking's (1999) concepts of 'refuting' (showing a thesis to be false) and 'unmasking' (undermining a thesis). Under 'refuting', we consider the methodological validation processes on their own terms, identifying contradictory claims, weak findings and inconsistent application of methodological standards. Under 'unmasking', we critically analyse validation as a concept in itself. Here we identify two fundamental problems: symptom learning and feedback effects; and circularity and assumptions of independence and objectivity. Our analysis also highlights the extra-theoretical functions and effects of the tools. Both on their own terms and when subjected to more searching analysis, then, the validity claims the tools make fail to hold up to scrutiny. In concluding, we consider some of the effects of the processes we identify. Not only do these tools make certainty where there is none, we contend, they actively participate in the creation of social objects and social groups, and in shaping affected individuals and their opportunities. In unpacking in detail the legitimacy of the tools, our aim is to open up for further scrutiny the processes by which they go about making (rather than

  15. Urinary PCR as an increasingly useful tool for an accurate diagnosis of leptospirosis in livestock.

    PubMed

    Hamond, C; Martins, G; Loureiro, A P; Pestana, C; Lawson-Ferreira, R; Medeiros, M A; Lilenbaum, W

    2014-03-01

    The aim of the present study was to consider the wide usage of urinary PCR as an increasingly useful tool for an accurate diagnosis of leptospirosis in livestock. A total of 512 adult animals (300 cattle, 138 horses, 59 goats and 15 pigs), from herds/flocks with reproductive problems in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil was studied by serology and urinary PCR. From the 512 serum samples tested, 223 (43.5 %) were seroreactive (cattle: 45.6 %, horses: 41.3 %, goats: 34%and pigs: 60 %). PCR detected leptospiral DNA in 32.4 % (cattle: 21.6 %, horses: 36.2 %, goats: 77.4 % and pigs: 33.3 %. To our knowledge there is no another study including such a large number of samples (512) from different species, providing a comprehensive analysis of the usage of PCR for detecting leptospiral carriers in livestock. Serological and molecular results were discrepant, regardless the titre, what was an expected outcome. Nevertheless, it is impossible to establish agreement between these tests, since the two methodologies are conducted on different samples (MAT - serum; PCR - urine). Additionally, the MAT is an indirect method and PCR is a direct one. In conclusion, we have demonstrated that urinary PCR should be considered and encouraged as an increasingly useful tool for an accurate diagnosis of leptospirosis in livestock. PMID:24222053

  16. Development of diagnostic tools for the EUV spectral range

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mann, Klaus R.; Kranzusch, Sebastian; Eckert, G.; Peth, Christian; Schaefer, Bernd

    2002-07-01

    The successful implementation of EUV lithography systems strongly relies both on the efficiency of the employed optical components and the precise control of the relevant source parameters. Utilizing a laser-based plasma source for the generation of 13nm radiation, metrology for comprehensive characterization of EUV radiation and the related optics is developed at Laser-Laboratorium Goettingen. A soft X-ray plasma is produced with the help of a Nd:YAG laser which is focused into a pulsed xenon or oxygen gas jet. The alternate use of these two target gases accomplishes either a very intense broadband emission (Xe), or a less intense narrow-band line emission (O2) at the wavelength of 13nm. Additional filtering with the help of Mo/Si mirrors yields quasi-monochromatic 13nm radiation, as needed for testing of optical components, especially reflectometry. The performance of the EUV source is monitored with respect to source diameter, emission characteristics, and 13nm conversion efficiency by the help of different diagnostic tools, including EUV sensitive pin-hole cameras, photo-diodes and an EUV spectrometer. Moreover, first wavefront measurements of EUV radiation are performed with the help of a Hartmann wavefront analyzer, which was sensibilized for 13nm radiation.

  17. SEM analysis as a diagnostic tool for photovoltaic cell degradation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osayemwenre, Gilbert; Meyer, E. L.

    2013-04-01

    The importance of scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis as a diagnostic tool for analyzing the degradation of a polycrystalline Photovoltaic cell has been studied. The main aim of this study is to characterize the surface morphology of hot spot regions (degraded) cells in photovoltaic solar cells. In recent years, production of hetero and multi-junction solar cells has experience tremendous growth as compared to conventional silicon (Si) solar cells. Thin film photovoltaic solar cells generally are more prone to exhibiting defects and associated degradation modes. To improve the lifetime of these cells and modules, it is imperative to fully understand the cause and effect of defects and degradation modes. The objective of this paper is to diagnose the observed degradation in polycrystalline silicon cells, using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). In this study poly-Si cells were characterize before and after reverse biasing, the reverse biasing was done to evaluate the cells' susceptibility to leakage currents and hotspots formation. After reverse biasing, some cells were found to exhibit hotspots as confirmed by infrared thermography. The surface morphology of these hotspots re

  18. 77 FR 42504 - Prospective Grant of Exclusive License: Development of a Diagnostic Tool for Diagnosing Benign...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-07-19

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND... Diagnostic Tool for Diagnosing Benign Versus Malignant Thyroid Lesions AGENCY: National Institutes of Health.../024,845 and foreign equivalents thereof entitled ``Diagnostic Tool for Diagnosing Benign...

  19. Intrapartum sonographic signs: new diagnostic tools in malposition and malrotation.

    PubMed

    Malvasi, Antonio; Giacci, Francesco; Gustapane, Sarah; Sparic, Radmila; Barbera, Antonio; Tinelli, Andrea

    2016-08-01

    In the past years, numerous studies have been published on the use of ultrasound during labor, showing this is an effective, accurate and objective tool for the assessment of the fetal head position and station. Literature affirmed that traditional transvaginal digital examination is highly subjective and dependent on the operator's experience. On the contrary, the use of intrapartum suprapubic transabdominal ultrasound can improve accuracy in determination of fetal head position and the precise knowledge of the location of specific fetal head landmarks in relationship to maternal pelvis. Intrapartum ultrasound will assist obstetricians in the diagnosis of normal labor progression, suggesting when medical and or operative intervention should be taken in case of complications. During each fetal head movement, there is a very specific relationship between fetal head landmarks and well-identified maternal structures, so the ultrasound diagnosis is performed step by step. In this review, we summarized the clinical situation of the fetal head in the pelvis and the relative ultrasonographic signs. Moreover, we collected all the ultrasonographic measures to diagnose the fetal head progression and rotations in the birth canal. PMID:26444321

  20. A Quantitative Tool for Producing DNA-Based Diagnostic Arrays

    SciTech Connect

    Tom J. Whitaker

    2008-07-11

    The purpose of this project was to develop a precise, quantitative method to analyze oligodeoxynucleotides (ODNs) on an array to enable a systematic approach to quality control issues affecting DNA microarrays. Two types of ODN's were tested; ODN's formed by photolithography and ODN's printed onto microarrays. Initial work in Phase I, performed in conjunction with Affymetrix, Inc. who has a patent on a photolithographic in situ technique for creating DNA arrays, was very promising but did seem to indicate that the atomization process was not complete. Soon after Phase II work was under way, Affymetrix had further developed fluorescent methods and indicated they were no longer interested in our resonance ionization technique. This was communicated to the program manager and it was decided that the project would continue and be focused on printed ODNs. The method being tested is called SIRIS, Sputter-Initiated Resonance Ionization Spectroscopy. SIRIS has been shown to be a highly sensitive, selective, and quantitative tool for atomic species. This project was aimed at determining if an ODN could be labeled in such a way that SIRIS could be used to measure the label and thus provide quantitative measurements of the ODN on an array. One of the largest problems in this study has been developing a method that allows us to know the amount of an ODN on a surface independent of the SIRIS measurement. Even though we could accurately determine the amount of ODN deposited on a surface, the amount that actually attached to the surface is very difficult to measure (hence the need for a quantitative tool). A double-labeling procedure was developed in which 33P and Pt were both used to label ODNs. The radioactive 33P could be measured by a proportional counter that maps the counts in one dimension. This gave a good measurement of the amount of ODN remaining on a surface after immobilization and washing. A second label, Pt, was attached to guanine nucleotides in the ODN. Studies

  1. Development and Validation of a Multidisciplinary Tool for Accurate and Efficient Rotorcraft Noise Prediction (MUTE)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, Yi; Anusonti-Inthra, Phuriwat; Diskin, Boris

    2011-01-01

    A physics-based, systematically coupled, multidisciplinary prediction tool (MUTE) for rotorcraft noise was developed and validated with a wide range of flight configurations and conditions. MUTE is an aggregation of multidisciplinary computational tools that accurately and efficiently model the physics of the source of rotorcraft noise, and predict the noise at far-field observer locations. It uses systematic coupling approaches among multiple disciplines including Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), Computational Structural Dynamics (CSD), and high fidelity acoustics. Within MUTE, advanced high-order CFD tools are used around the rotor blade to predict the transonic flow (shock wave) effects, which generate the high-speed impulsive noise. Predictions of the blade-vortex interaction noise in low speed flight are also improved by using the Particle Vortex Transport Method (PVTM), which preserves the wake flow details required for blade/wake and fuselage/wake interactions. The accuracy of the source noise prediction is further improved by utilizing a coupling approach between CFD and CSD, so that the effects of key structural dynamics, elastic blade deformations, and trim solutions are correctly represented in the analysis. The blade loading information and/or the flow field parameters around the rotor blade predicted by the CFD/CSD coupling approach are used to predict the acoustic signatures at far-field observer locations with a high-fidelity noise propagation code (WOPWOP3). The predicted results from the MUTE tool for rotor blade aerodynamic loading and far-field acoustic signatures are compared and validated with a variation of experimental data sets, such as UH60-A data, DNW test data and HART II test data.

  2. MetaBAT, an efficient tool for accurately reconstructing single genomes from complex microbial communities

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Kang, Dongwan D.; Froula, Jeff; Egan, Rob; Wang, Zhong

    2015-01-01

    Grouping large genomic fragments assembled from shotgun metagenomic sequences to deconvolute complex microbial communities, or metagenome binning, enables the study of individual organisms and their interactions. Because of the complex nature of these communities, existing metagenome binning methods often miss a large number of microbial species. In addition, most of the tools are not scalable to large datasets. Here we introduce automated software called MetaBAT that integrates empirical probabilistic distances of genome abundance and tetranucleotide frequency for accurate metagenome binning. MetaBAT outperforms alternative methods in accuracy and computational efficiency on both synthetic and real metagenome datasets. Lastly, it automatically formsmore » hundreds of high quality genome bins on a very large assembly consisting millions of contigs in a matter of hours on a single node. MetaBAT is open source software and available at https://bitbucket.org/berkeleylab/metabat.« less

  3. MetaBAT, an efficient tool for accurately reconstructing single genomes from complex microbial communities

    SciTech Connect

    Kang, Dongwan D.; Froula, Jeff; Egan, Rob; Wang, Zhong

    2015-01-01

    Grouping large genomic fragments assembled from shotgun metagenomic sequences to deconvolute complex microbial communities, or metagenome binning, enables the study of individual organisms and their interactions. Because of the complex nature of these communities, existing metagenome binning methods often miss a large number of microbial species. In addition, most of the tools are not scalable to large datasets. Here we introduce automated software called MetaBAT that integrates empirical probabilistic distances of genome abundance and tetranucleotide frequency for accurate metagenome binning. MetaBAT outperforms alternative methods in accuracy and computational efficiency on both synthetic and real metagenome datasets. Lastly, it automatically forms hundreds of high quality genome bins on a very large assembly consisting millions of contigs in a matter of hours on a single node. MetaBAT is open source software and available at https://bitbucket.org/berkeleylab/metabat.

  4. C-Sibelia: an easy-to-use and highly accurate tool for bacterial genome comparison

    PubMed Central

    Minkin, Ilya; Pham, Hoa; Starostina, Ekaterina; Vyahhi, Nikolay; Pham, Son

    2013-01-01

    We present C-Sibelia, a highly accurate and easy-to-use software tool for comparing two closely related bacterial genomes, which can be presented as either finished sequences or fragmented assemblies. C-Sibelia takes as input two FASTA files and produces: (1) a VCF file containing all identified single nucleotide variations and indels; (2) an XMFA file containing alignment information. The software also produces Circos diagrams visualizing high level genomic architecture for rearrangement analyses. C-Sibelia is a part of the Sibelia comparative genomics suite, which is freely available under the GNU GPL v.2 license at http://sourceforge.net/projects/sibelia-bio. C-Sibelia is compatible with Unix-like operating systems. A web-based version of the software is available at http://etool.me/software/csibelia. PMID:25110578

  5. Accurate real-time depth control for CP-SSOCT distal sensor based handheld microsurgery tools.

    PubMed

    Cheon, Gyeong Woo; Huang, Yong; Cha, Jaepyeng; Gehlbach, Peter L; Kang, Jin U

    2015-05-01

    This paper presents a novel intuitive targeting and tracking scheme that utilizes a common-path swept source optical coherence tomography (CP-SSOCT) distal sensor integrated handheld microsurgical tool. To achieve micron-order precision control, a reliable and accurate OCT distal sensing method is required; simultaneously, a prediction algorithm is necessary to compensate for the system delay associated with the computational, mechanical and electronic latencies. Due to the multi-layered structure of retina, it is necessary to develop effective surface detection methods rather than simple peak detection. To achieve this, a shifted cross-correlation method is applied for surface detection in order to increase robustness and accuracy in distal sensing. A predictor based on Kalman filter was implemented for more precise motion compensation. The performance was first evaluated using an established dry phantom consisting of stacked cellophane tape. This was followed by evaluation in an ex-vivo bovine retina model to assess system accuracy and precision. The results demonstrate highly accurate depth targeting with less than 5 μm RMSE depth locking. PMID:26137393

  6. Accurate real-time depth control for CP-SSOCT distal sensor based handheld microsurgery tools

    PubMed Central

    Cheon, Gyeong Woo; Huang, Yong; Cha, Jaepyeng; Gehlbach, Peter L.; Kang, Jin U.

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents a novel intuitive targeting and tracking scheme that utilizes a common-path swept source optical coherence tomography (CP-SSOCT) distal sensor integrated handheld microsurgical tool. To achieve micron-order precision control, a reliable and accurate OCT distal sensing method is required; simultaneously, a prediction algorithm is necessary to compensate for the system delay associated with the computational, mechanical and electronic latencies. Due to the multi-layered structure of retina, it is necessary to develop effective surface detection methods rather than simple peak detection. To achieve this, a shifted cross-correlation method is applied for surface detection in order to increase robustness and accuracy in distal sensing. A predictor based on Kalman filter was implemented for more precise motion compensation. The performance was first evaluated using an established dry phantom consisting of stacked cellophane tape. This was followed by evaluation in an ex-vivo bovine retina model to assess system accuracy and precision. The results demonstrate highly accurate depth targeting with less than 5 μm RMSE depth locking. PMID:26137393

  7. Review of rapid molecular diagnostic tools for avian influenza

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Molecular diagnostics tests are commonly used to diagnose avian influenza virus (AIV) because they are sensitive, can be performed rapidly, with high throughput, and at a moderate cost. Molecular diagnostic tests have recently proven themselves to be invaluable in controlling disease outbreaks arou...

  8. Accurate Point-of-Care Detection of Ruptured Fetal Membranes: Improved Diagnostic Performance Characteristics with a Monoclonal/Polyclonal Immunoassay

    PubMed Central

    Rogers, Linda C.; Scott, Laurie; Block, Jon E.

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE Accurate and timely diagnosis of rupture of membranes (ROM) is imperative to allow for gestational age-specific interventions. This study compared the diagnostic performance characteristics between two methods used for the detection of ROM as measured in the same patient. METHODS Vaginal secretions were evaluated using the conventional fern test as well as a point-of-care monoclonal/polyclonal immunoassay test (ROM Plus®) in 75 pregnant patients who presented to labor and delivery with complaints of leaking amniotic fluid. Both tests were compared to analytical confirmation of ROM using three external laboratory tests. Diagnostic performance characteristics were calculated including sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), and accuracy. RESULTS Diagnostic performance characteristics uniformly favored ROM detection using the immunoassay test compared to the fern test: sensitivity (100% vs. 77.8%), specificity (94.8% vs. 79.3%), PPV (75% vs. 36.8%), NPV (100% vs. 95.8%), and accuracy (95.5% vs. 79.1%). CONCLUSIONS The point-of-care immunoassay test provides improved diagnostic accuracy for the detection of ROM compared to fern testing. It has the potential of improving patient management decisions, thereby minimizing serious complications and perinatal morbidity. PMID:27199579

  9. Biomarkers and diagnostic tools for detection of Helicobacter pylori.

    PubMed

    Khalilpour, Akbar; Kazemzadeh-Narbat, Mehdi; Tamayol, Ali; Oklu, Rahmi; Khademhosseini, Ali

    2016-06-01

    Helicobacter pylori is responsible for worldwide chronic bacterial infection in humans affecting approximately half of the world's population. H. pylori is associated with significant morbidity and mortality including gastric cancer. The infection has both direct and indirect impacts on economic and overall well-being of patients; hence, there is a great need for diagnostic markers that could be used in the development of diagnostic kits. Here, we briefly review general aspects of H. pylori infection and the diagnostic biomarkers used in laboratory tests today with a focus on the potential role of microfluidic systems in future immunodiagnosis platforms. PMID:27084783

  10. Spectroscopy as a diagnostic tool for urban soil contaminants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brook, Anna; Kopel, Daniella

    2014-05-01

    Urbanization has become one of the major forces of change around the globe. Land use transformation, especially urbanization has the most profound influences of human activities because it affects so many of the planet's physical and biological systems. Land use changes directly impact the ability of the earth to continue to provide ecological services to human society and the other occupants of the ecosystems. The urban process gradually degrades and transforms agricultural and natural ecosystems into built environments. The urban environment includes cities, suburbs, peri-urban areas and towns. Urban ecosystems are highly heterogeneous due to the variety of land covers and land purposes. Thus, the choices on managing the extent and arranging the land cover patches (e.g., lawns) assist to shape the emergent structure and function of the urban ecosystems. As a result of ecological conditions and current management status the urban soils show substantial spatial heterogeneity. Whereas, adverse effects of pollutants on ecosystems have been demonstrated, one important need for environmental impact assessment have been defined as maintenance of long-term monitoring systems, which can enable to improve monitoring, modelling and assessment of various stressors in agriculture environment. Diffuse reflectance spectroscopy and diffuse reflectance Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy across visible-near- short- mid- and long- wave infrared (0.4-14μm) has the potential to meet this demand. Relationships between spectral reflectance and soil properties, such as grain size distribution, moisture, iron oxides, carbonate content, and organic matter, have already been established in many studies (Krishnan et al. 1980, Ben-Dor and Banin 1995, Jarmer et al. 2008, Richter et al. 2009). The aims of this study are to develop diagnostic tool for heavy metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, asbestos and other anthropogenic contaminants in urban soil using spectroscopy

  11. TOPLHA: an accurate and efficient numerical tool for analysis and design of LH antennas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milanesio, D.; Lancellotti, V.; Meneghini, O.; Maggiora, R.; Vecchi, G.; Bilato, R.

    2007-09-01

    Auxiliary ICRF heating systems in tokamaks often involve large complex antennas, made up of several conducting straps hosted in distinct cavities that open towards the plasma. The same holds especially true in the LH regime, wherein the antennas are comprised of arrays of many phased waveguides. Upon observing that the various cavities or waveguides couple to each other only through the EM fields existing over the plasma-facing apertures, we self-consistently formulated the EM problem by a convenient set of multiple coupled integral equations. Subsequent application of the Method of Moments yields a highly sparse algebraic system; therefore formal inversion of the system matrix happens to be not so memory demanding, despite the number of unknowns may be quite large (typically 105 or so). The overall strategy has been implemented in an enhanced version of TOPICA (Torino Polytechnic Ion Cyclotron Antenna) and in a newly developed code named TOPLHA (Torino Polytechnic Lower Hybrid Antenna). Both are simulation and prediction tools for plasma facing antennas that incorporate commercial-grade 3D graphic interfaces along with an accurate description of the plasma. In this work we present the new proposed formulation along with examples of application to real life large LH antenna systems.

  12. Aptamers as a novel tool for diagnostics and therapy.

    PubMed

    Kadioglu, Onat; Malczyk, Anna Helena; Greten, Henry Johannes; Efferth, Thomas

    2015-04-01

    Aptamers are short single-stranded DNA or RNA oligonucleotides that are capable of binding small molecules, proteins, or nucleotides with high specificity. They show a stable conformation and high binding affinity for their target molecules. There are numerous applications for aptamers in biotechnology, molecular diagnostics and targeted therapy of diseases. Their production is cheap, and they generally display lower immunogenicity than monoclonal antibodies. In the present review, we give an introduction to the preparation of aptamers and provide examples for their use in biotechnology, diagnostics and therapy of diseases. PMID:25637166

  13. Characteristics of a Cognitive Tool That Helps Students Learn Diagnostic Problem Solving

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Danielson, Jared A.; Mills, Eric M.; Vermeer, Pamela J.; Preast, Vanessa A.; Young, Karen M.; Christopher, Mary M.; George, Jeanne W.; Wood, R. Darren; Bender, Holly S.

    2007-01-01

    Three related studies replicated and extended previous work (J.A. Danielson et al. (2003), "Educational Technology Research and Development," 51(3), 63-81) involving the Diagnostic Pathfinder (dP) (previously Problem List Generator [PLG]), a cognitive tool for learning diagnostic problem solving. In studies 1 and 2, groups of 126 and 113…

  14. TOPICA: an accurate and efficient numerical tool for analysis and design of ICRF antennas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lancellotti, V.; Milanesio, D.; Maggiora, R.; Vecchi, G.; Kyrytsya, V.

    2006-07-01

    The demand for a predictive tool to help in designing ion-cyclotron radio frequency (ICRF) antenna systems for today's fusion experiments has driven the development of codes such as ICANT, RANT3D, and the early development of TOPICA (TOrino Polytechnic Ion Cyclotron Antenna) code. This paper describes the substantive evolution of TOPICA formulation and implementation that presently allow it to handle the actual geometry of ICRF antennas (with curved, solid straps, a general-shape housing, Faraday screen, etc) as well as an accurate plasma description, accounting for density and temperature profiles and finite Larmor radius effects. The antenna is assumed to be housed in a recess-like enclosure. Both goals have been attained by formally separating the problem into two parts: the vacuum region around the antenna and the plasma region inside the toroidal chamber. Field continuity and boundary conditions allow formulating of a set of two coupled integral equations for the unknown equivalent (current) sources; then the equations are reduced to a linear system by a method of moments solution scheme employing 2D finite elements defined over a 3D non-planar surface triangular-cell mesh. In the vacuum region calculations are done in the spatial (configuration) domain, whereas in the plasma region a spectral (wavenumber) representation of fields and currents is adopted, thus permitting a description of the plasma by a surface impedance matrix. Owing to this approach, any plasma model can be used in principle, and at present the FELICE code has been employed. The natural outcomes of TOPICA are the induced currents on the conductors (antenna, housing, etc) and the electric field in front of the plasma, whence the antenna circuit parameters (impedance/scattering matrices), the radiated power and the fields (at locations other than the chamber aperture) are then obtained. An accurate model of the feeding coaxial lines is also included. The theoretical model and its TOPICA

  15. An accurate tool for the fast generation of dark matter halo catalogues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monaco, P.; Sefusatti, E.; Borgani, S.; Crocce, M.; Fosalba, P.; Sheth, R. K.; Theuns, T.

    2013-08-01

    We present a new parallel implementation of the PINpointing Orbit Crossing-Collapsed HIerarchical Objects (PINOCCHIO) algorithm, a quick tool, based on Lagrangian Perturbation Theory, for the hierarchical build-up of dark matter (DM) haloes in cosmological volumes. To assess its ability to predict halo correlations on large scales, we compare its results with those of an N-body simulation of a 3 h-1 Gpc box sampled with 20483 particles taken from the MICE suite, matching the same seeds for the initial conditions. Thanks to the Fastest Fourier Transforms in the West (FFTW) libraries and to the relatively simple design, the code shows very good scaling properties. The CPU time required by PINOCCHIO is a tiny fraction (˜1/2000) of that required by the MICE simulation. Varying some of PINOCCHIO numerical parameters allows one to produce a universal mass function that lies in the range allowed by published fits, although it underestimates the MICE mass function of Friends-of-Friends (FoF) haloes in the high-mass tail. We compare the matter-halo and the halo-halo power spectra with those of the MICE simulation and find that these two-point statistics are well recovered on large scales. In particular, when catalogues are matched in number density, agreement within 10 per cent is achieved for the halo power spectrum. At scales k > 0.1 h Mpc-1, the inaccuracy of the Zel'dovich approximation in locating halo positions causes an underestimate of the power spectrum that can be modelled as a Gaussian factor with a damping scale of d = 3 h-1 Mpc at z = 0, decreasing at higher redshift. Finally, a remarkable match is obtained for the reduced halo bispectrum, showing a good description of non-linear halo bias. Our results demonstrate the potential of PINOCCHIO as an accurate and flexible tool for generating large ensembles of mock galaxy surveys, with interesting applications for the analysis of large galaxy redshift surveys.

  16. High resolution DEM from Tandem-X interferometry: an accurate tool to characterize volcanic activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albino, Fabien; Kervyn, Francois

    2013-04-01

    Tandem-X mission was launched by the German agency (DLR) in June 2010. It is a new generation high resolution SAR sensor mainly dedicated to topographic applications. For the purpose of our researches focused on the study of the volcano-tectonic activity in the Kivu Rift area, a set of Tandem-X bistatic radar images were used to produce a high resolution InSAR DEM of the Virunga Volcanic Province (VVP). The VVP is part of the Western branch of the African rift, situated at the boundary between D.R. Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. It has two highly active volcanoes, Nyiragongo and Nyamulagira. A first task concerns the quantitative assessment of the vertical accuracy that can be achieved with these new data. The new DEMs are compared to other space borne datasets (SRTM, ASTER) but also to field measurements given by differential GPS. Multi-temporal radar acquisitions allow us to produce several DEM of the same area. This appeared to be very useful in the context of an active volcanic context where new geomorphological features (faults, fissures, volcanic cones and lava flows) appear continuously through time. For example, since the year 2000, time of the SRTM acquisition, we had one eruption at Nyiragongo (2002) and six eruptions at Nyamulagira (2001, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2010 and 2011) which all induce large changes in the landscape with the emplacement of new lava fields and scoria cones. From our repetitive Tandem-X DEM production, we have a tool to identify and also quantify in term of size and volume all the topographic changes relative to this past volcanic activity. These parameters are high value information to improve the understanding of the Virunga volcanoes; the accurate estimation of erupted volume and knowledge of structural features associated to past eruptions are key parameters to understand the volcanic system, to ameliorate the hazard assessment, and finally contribute to risk mitigation in a densely populated area.

  17. Infrared Imaging Tools for Diagnostic Applications in Dermatology

    PubMed Central

    Gurjarpadhye, Abhijit Achyut; Parekh, Mansi Bharat; Dubnika, Arita; Rajadas, Jayakumar; Inayathullah, Mohammed

    2015-01-01

    Infrared (IR) imaging is a collection of non-invasive imaging techniques that utilize the IR domain of the electromagnetic spectrum for tissue assessment. A subset of these techniques construct images using back-reflected light, while other techniques rely on detection of IR radiation emitted by the tissue as a result of its temperature. Modern IR detectors sense thermal emissions and produce a heat map of surface temperature distribution in tissues. Thus, the IR spectrum offers a variety of imaging applications particularly useful in clinical diagnostic area, ranging from high-resolution, depth-resolved visualization of tissue to temperature variation assessment. These techniques have been helpful in the diagnosis of many medical conditions including skin/breast cancer, arthritis, allergy, burns, and others. In this review, we discuss current roles of IR-imaging techniques for diagnostic applications in dermatology with an emphasis on skin cancer, allergies, blisters, burns and wounds. PMID:26691203

  18. BRACAnalysis CDx as a companion diagnostic tool for Lynparza.

    PubMed

    Gunderson, Camille C; Moore, Kathleen N

    2015-01-01

    Lynparza and its companion diagnostic test, BRACAnalysis were approved by the US FDA in December 2014 for recurrent ovarian cancer in women with a germline BRCA mutation. Women with a deleterious BRCA mutation are predisposed to ovarian cancer due to deficient homologous recombination repair. Inhibition of the PARP enzyme forces use of an alternate error-prone pathway for repair; PARP trapping is another mechanism utilized that blocks cellular replication by trapping inactivated PARP onto single-stranded DNA breaks. Although many companion diagnostic kits are already in use in oncology, BRACAnaylsis is unique in several ways including comprehensive BRCA gene germline profiling, availability to all women with ovarian cancer and implications for family members. PMID:26292709

  19. Spectral Line Shapes as a Diagnostic Tool in Magnetic Fusion

    SciTech Connect

    Stamm, R; Capes, H; Demura, A; Godbert-Mouret, L; Koubiti, M; Marandet, Y; Mattioli, M; Rosato, J; Rosmej, F; Fournier, K B

    2006-07-22

    Spectral line shapes and intensities are used for obtaining information on the various regions of magnetic fusion devices. Emission from low principal quantum numbers of hydrogen isotopes is analyzed for understanding the complex recycling mechanism. Lines emitted from high principal quantum numbers of hydrogen and helium are dominated by Stark effect, allowing an electronic density diagnostic in the divertor. Intensities of lines emitted by impurities are fitted for a better knowledge of ion transport in the confined plasma.

  20. METABOLOMICS AS A DIAGNOSTIC TOOL FOR SMALL FISH TOXICOLOGY RESEARCH

    EPA Science Inventory

    Metabolomics involves the application of advanced analytical and statistical tools to profile changes in levels of endogenous metabolites in tissues and biofluids resulting from disease onset or stress. While certain metabolites are being specifically targeted in these studies, w...

  1. A new tool improves diagnostic test performance for transmission em evaluation of axonemal dynein arms.

    PubMed

    Funkhouser, W Keith; Niethammer, Marc; Carson, Johnny L; Burns, Kimberlie A; Knowles, Michael R; Leigh, Margaret W; Zariwala, Maimoona A; Funkhouser, William K

    2014-08-01

    Abstract Diagnosis of primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD) by identification of dynein arm loss in transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images can be confounded by high background noise due to random electron-dense material within the ciliary matrix, leading to diagnostic uncertainty even for experienced morphologists. The authors developed a novel image analysis tool to average the axonemal peripheral microtubular doublets, thereby increasing microtubular signal and reducing random background noise. In a randomized, double-blinded study that compared two experienced morphologists and three different diagnostic approaches, they found that use of this tool led to improvement in diagnostic TEM test performance. PMID:23957500

  2. Accurate, Fast and Cost-Effective Diagnostic Test for Monosomy 1p36 Using Real-Time Quantitative PCR

    PubMed Central

    Cunha, Pricila da Silva; Pena, Heloisa B.; D'Angelo, Carla Sustek; Koiffmann, Celia P.; Rosenfeld, Jill A.; Shaffer, Lisa G.; Stofanko, Martin; Gonçalves-Dornelas, Higgor; Pena, Sérgio Danilo Junho

    2014-01-01

    Monosomy 1p36 is considered the most common subtelomeric deletion syndrome in humans and it accounts for 0.5–0.7% of all the cases of idiopathic intellectual disability. The molecular diagnosis is often made by microarray-based comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH), which has the drawback of being a high-cost technique. However, patients with classic monosomy 1p36 share some typical clinical characteristics that, together with its common prevalence, justify the development of a less expensive, targeted diagnostic method. In this study, we developed a simple, rapid, and inexpensive real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay for targeted diagnosis of monosomy 1p36, easily accessible for low-budget laboratories in developing countries. For this, we have chosen two target genes which are deleted in the majority of patients with monosomy 1p36: PRKCZ and SKI. In total, 39 patients previously diagnosed with monosomy 1p36 by aCGH, fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH), and/or multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) all tested positive on our qPCR assay. By simultaneously using these two genes we have been able to detect 1p36 deletions with 100% sensitivity and 100% specificity. We conclude that qPCR of PRKCZ and SKI is a fast and accurate diagnostic test for monosomy 1p36, costing less than 10 US dollars in reagent costs. PMID:24839341

  3. Endobronchial ultrasound: an unusual diagnostic tool for pulmonary embolism.

    PubMed

    Sariaydin, Muzaffer; Günay, Sibel; Günay, Ersin; Sarinc Ulasli, Sevinc

    2016-03-01

    Pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE) is an emergent and common pulmonary vascular disease. The most common diagnostic method for PTE is computer-aided tomography angiography. Endobronchial ultrasonography (EBUS) is used in diagnosis and staging of lung cancer via transbronchial needle aspiration from mediastinal lymphadenopathies and central masses. Diagnosis of PTE with EBUS is not common, although this technique helps to monitor pulmonary vasculature. The present case, a 60-year-old female patient to whom EBUS was applied because of mediastinal lymphadenopathy, was diagnosed as incidental PTE. PMID:26992367

  4. Guided MHD waves as a coronal diagnostic tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, B.

    1986-01-01

    A description is provided of how fast magnetoacoustic waves are ducted along regions of low Alfven velocity (high density) in the corona, exhibiting a distinctive wave signature which may be used as a diagnostic probe of in situ coronal conditions (magnetic field strength, density inhomogeneity, etc.). Some observational knowledge of the start time of the impulsive wave source, possibly a flare, the start and end times of the generated wave event, and the frequency of the pulsations in that event permits a seismological deduction of the physical properties of the coronal medium in which the wave propagated. With good observations the theory offers a new means of probing the coronal atmosphere.

  5. Time series as a diagnostic tool for EKG

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erkal, Cahit; Cecen, Aydin

    2007-11-01

    A preliminary analysis of heart rate variability (peak-to-peak intervals based on EKG) will be presented using the tools of nonlinear dynamics and chaos. We show that uncertainty determination of the most commonly used invariant-the correlation dimension- and a proper implementation of time series analysis tools are necessary to differentiate between the healthy and unhealthy state of the heart. We present an example analysis based on normal and atrial fibrillation EKGs and point of some pitfalls that may give rise to misleading conclusions.

  6. Development of a High-Temperature Diagnostics-While-Drilling Tool

    SciTech Connect

    Blankenship, Douglas; Chavira, David; Henfling, Joseph; Hetmaniak, Chris; Huey, David; Jacobson, Ron; King, Dennis; Knudsen, Steve; Mansure, A. J.; Polsky, Yarom

    2009-01-01

    This report documents work performed in the second phase of the Diagnostics While-Drilling (DWD) project in which a high-temperature (HT) version of the phase 1 low-temperature (LT) proof-of-concept (POC) DWD tool was built and tested. Descriptions of the design, fabrication and field testing of the HT tool are provided.

  7. Beyond the Rubric: Think-Alouds as a Diagnostic Assessment Tool for High School Writing Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beck, Sarah W.; Llosa, Lorena; Black, Kristin; Trzeszkowski-Giese, Alyssa

    2015-01-01

    In order to teach writing effectively, teachers need assessment tools that work for diagnostic purposes--tools that can help them identify students' specific strengths and challenges with writing, as well as generate new ideas for instruction. This study explored what 5 high school teachers (3 ELA and 2 ESL) learned about their students' strengths…

  8. Novel molecular diagnostic tools for malaria elimination: a review of options from the point of view of high-throughput and applicability in resource limited settings.

    PubMed

    Britton, Sumudu; Cheng, Qin; McCarthy, James S

    2016-01-01

    As malaria transmission continues to decrease, an increasing number of countries will enter pre-elimination and elimination. To interrupt transmission, changes in control strategies are likely to require more accurate identification of all carriers of Plasmodium parasites, both symptomatic and asymptomatic, using diagnostic tools that are highly sensitive, high throughput and with fast turnaround times preferably performed in local health service settings. Currently available immunochromatographic lateral flow rapid diagnostic tests and field microscopy are unlikely to consistently detect infections at parasite densities less than 100 parasites/µL making them insufficiently sensitive for detecting all carriers. Molecular diagnostic platforms, such as PCR and LAMP, are currently available in reference laboratories, but at a cost both financially and in turnaround time. This review describes the recent progress in developing molecular diagnostic tools in terms of their capacity for high throughput and potential for performance in non-reference laboratories for malaria elimination. PMID:26879936

  9. The Development of a Literacy Diagnostic Tool for Maltese Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Xuereb, Rachael; Grech, Helen; Dodd, Barbara

    2011-01-01

    This article focuses on the development of a Literacy Assessment Battery for the diagnosis of Maltese children with specific learning difficulties. It forms part of a wider research study involving testing of 549 children in Malta as well as standardisation of the tool. Results of the children's performance and psychometric validation go beyond…

  10. Aptamer-nanoparticle complexes as powerful diagnostic and therapeutic tools.

    PubMed

    Jo, Hunho; Ban, Changill

    2016-01-01

    Correct diagnosis and successful therapy are extremely important to enjoy a healthy life when suffering from a disease. To achieve these aims, various cutting-edge technologies have been designed and fabricated to diagnose and treat specific diseases. Among these technologies, aptamer-nanomaterial hybrids have received considerable attention from scientists and doctors because they have numerous advantages over other methods, such as good biocompatibility, low immunogenicity and controllable selectivity. In particular, aptamers, oligonucleic acids or peptides that bind to a specific target molecule, are regarded as outstanding biomolecules. In this review, several screening techniques for aptamers, also called systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX) methods, are introduced, and diagnostic and therapeutic aptamer applications are also presented. Furthermore, we describe diverse aptamer-nanomaterial conjugate designs and their applications for diagnosis and therapy. PMID:27151454

  11. Aptamer–nanoparticle complexes as powerful diagnostic and therapeutic tools

    PubMed Central

    Jo, Hunho; Ban, Changill

    2016-01-01

    Correct diagnosis and successful therapy are extremely important to enjoy a healthy life when suffering from a disease. To achieve these aims, various cutting-edge technologies have been designed and fabricated to diagnose and treat specific diseases. Among these technologies, aptamer–nanomaterial hybrids have received considerable attention from scientists and doctors because they have numerous advantages over other methods, such as good biocompatibility, low immunogenicity and controllable selectivity. In particular, aptamers, oligonucleic acids or peptides that bind to a specific target molecule, are regarded as outstanding biomolecules. In this review, several screening techniques for aptamers, also called systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX) methods, are introduced, and diagnostic and therapeutic aptamer applications are also presented. Furthermore, we describe diverse aptamer–nanomaterial conjugate designs and their applications for diagnosis and therapy. PMID:27151454

  12. Nucleic Acid Aptamers: Research Tools in Disease Diagnostics and Therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Yadava, Pramod K.

    2014-01-01

    Aptamers are short sequences of nucleic acid (DNA or RNA) or peptide molecules which adopt a conformation and bind cognate ligands with high affinity and specificity in a manner akin to antibody-antigen interactions. It has been globally acknowledged that aptamers promise a plethora of diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Although use of nucleic acid aptamers as targeted therapeutics or mediators of targeted drug delivery is a relatively new avenue of research, one aptamer-based drug “Macugen” is FDA approved and a series of aptamer-based drugs are in clinical pipelines. The present review discusses the aspects of design, unique properties, applications, and development of different aptamers to aid in cancer diagnosis, prevention, and/or treatment under defined conditions. PMID:25050359

  13. Phages of Listeria offer novel tools for diagnostics and biocontrol

    PubMed Central

    Hagens, Steven; Loessner, Martin J.

    2014-01-01

    Historically, bacteriophages infecting their hosts have perhaps been best known and even notorious for being a nuisance in dairy-fermentation processes. However, with the rapid progress in molecular microbiology and microbial ecology, a new dawn has risen for phages. This review will provide an overview on possible uses and applications of Listeria phages, including phage-typing, reporter phage for bacterial diagnostics, and use of phage as biocontrol agents for food safety. The use of phage-encoded enzymes such as endolysins for the detection and as antimicrobial agent will also be addressed. Desirable properties of candidate phages for biocontrol will be discussed. While emphasizing the enormous future potential for applications, we will also consider some of the intrinsic limitations dictated by both phage and bacterial ecology. PMID:24782847

  14. A diagnostic tool for malaria based on computer software

    PubMed Central

    Kotepui, Manas; Uthaisar, Kwuntida; Phunphuech, Bhukdee; Phiwklam, Nuoil

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, the gold standard method for malaria diagnosis is a staining of thick and thin blood film examined by expert laboratorists. It requires well-trained laboratorists, which is a time consuming task, and is un-automated protocol. For this study, Maladiag Software was developed to predict malaria infection in suspected malaria patients. The demographic data of patients, examination for malaria parasites, and complete blood count (CBC) profiles were analyzed. Binary logistic regression was used to create the equation for the malaria diagnosis. The diagnostic parameters of the equation were tested on 4,985 samples (703 infected and 4,282 control samples). The equation indicated 81.2% sensitivity and 80.3% specificity for predicting infection of malaria. The positive likelihood and negative likelihood ratio were 4.12 (95% CI = 4.01–4.23) and 0.23 (95% CI = 0.22–0.25), respectively. This parameter also had odds ratios (P value < 0.0001, OR = 17.6, 95% CI = 16.0–19.3). The equation can predict malaria infection after adjust for age, gender, nationality, monocyte (%), platelet count, neutrophil (%), lymphocyte (%), and the RBC count of patients. The diagnostic accuracy was 0.877 (Area under curve, AUC) (95% CI = 0.871–0.883). The system, when used in combination with other clinical and microscopy methods, might improve malaria diagnoses and enhance prompt treatment. PMID:26559606

  15. Continued Development of Expert System Tools for NPSS Engine Diagnostics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lewandowski, Henry

    1996-01-01

    The objectives of this grant were to work with previously developed NPSS (Numerical Propulsion System Simulation) tools and enhance their functionality; explore similar AI systems; and work with the High Performance Computing Communication (HPCC) K-12 program. Activities for this reporting period are briefly summarized and a paper addressing the implementation, monitoring and zooming in a distributed jet engine simulation is included as an attachment.

  16. Accurate identification and compensation of geometric errors of 5-axis CNC machine tools using double ball bar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lasemi, Ali; Xue, Deyi; Gu, Peihua

    2016-05-01

    Five-axis CNC machine tools are widely used in manufacturing of parts with free-form surfaces. Geometric errors of machine tools have significant effects on the quality of manufactured parts. This research focuses on development of a new method to accurately identify geometric errors of 5-axis CNC machines, especially the errors due to rotary axes, using the magnetic double ball bar. A theoretical model for identification of geometric errors is provided. In this model, both position-independent errors and position-dependent errors are considered as the error sources. This model is simplified by identification and removal of the correlated and insignificant error sources of the machine. Insignificant error sources are identified using the sensitivity analysis technique. Simulation results reveal that the simplified error identification model can result in more accurate estimations of the error parameters. Experiments on a 5-axis CNC machine tool also demonstrate significant reduction in the volumetric error after error compensation.

  17. Diagnostic tool for early detection of ovarian cancers using Raman spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieber, Chad A.; Molpus, Kelly; Brader, Kevin; Mahadevan-Jansen, Anita

    2000-05-01

    With an overall survival rate of about 35 percent, ovarian cancer claims more than 13,000 women in the US each year. It is estimated that roughly 1 in 70 women will develop ovarian cancer. Current screening techniques are challenged due to cost-effectiveness, variable false-positive results, and the asymptomatic nature of the early stages of ovarian cancer. The predominant screening method for ovarian cancers is transvaginal sonography (TVS). TVS is fairly accomplished at ovarian cancer detection, however it is inefficient in distinguishing between benign and malignant masses. Accurate diagnosis of the ovarian tumor relies on exploratory laparotomy, thus increasing the cost and hazard of false- positive screening methods. Raman spectroscopy has been sued successfully as a diagnostic tool in several organ systems in vitro. These studies have shown that Raman spectroscopy can be used to provide diagnosis of subtle changes in tissue pathology with high accuracy. Based on this success, we have developed a Raman spectroscopic system for application in the ovary. Using this system, the Raman signatures of normal and various types of non-normal human ovarian tissues were characterized in vitro. Raman spectra are being analyzed, and empirical as well as multivariate discriminatory algorithms developed. Based on the result of this study, a strategy for in vivo trials will be planned.

  18. Calibration of laser tomography as a new optical diagnostic tool applied to dosimetric polymer gels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alwan, R.; Guermeur, F.; Bailly, Y.; Simonin, L.; Svoboda, J.; Makovicka, L.; Martin, E.

    2008-03-01

    Numerous medical applications, as radiotherapy for example, require accurate and reproducible three-dimensional dose measurements with high spatial resolution. A solution of great interest and which has been exploited for many years is the use of dosimetric gels based on different physico-chemical principles, as Fricke's gels or polymer gels. Fricke's gels take advantage of the oxidation of ferrous ions in ferric while polymer gels are the result of the synthesis of polyacrylamide hydrogel from monomer and cross-linking agent. Fricke's gels have particular limitations not encountered with polymer gel dosimeters: the time delay between irradiation and measurement must be reduced in order to limit the diffusion of ferric ions which may remove the spatial dose information. That's why, during the past decade, many compositions of polymer gels have been studied (PAG, MAGIC, …), elaborated and even commercialized (BANG gels). However the gel composition remains of great interest regarding its physical properties. In this work, the authors propose a new optical diagnostic tool more flexible and less expensive in comparison with existing techniques like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and Optical-CT. This technique is based on light scattering behaviour occurring in an irradiated polymer gel (note that light scattering in Fricke's gels is very feeble, the latter being essentially absorbant).

  19. Shrinking the lymphatic filariasis map: update on diagnostic tools for mapping and transmission monitoring.

    PubMed

    Rebollo, Maria P; Bockarie, Moses John

    2014-12-01

    Lymphatic filariasis (LF), which is highly endemic in 73 countries worldwide, is targeted for elimination by 2020. The strategy for achieving this goal is based on 4 sequential programmatic steps: mapping, Mass drug administration (MDA) implementation, post-MDA surveillance and verification of LF elimination. All 4 stages of the implementation process are dependent on the availability of user friendly and highly sensitive rapid diagnostic tools. By the end of 2012, 59 countries had completed mapping for LF and Eritrea was the only country yet to start the process. Rolling out new diagnostic tools to facilitate the mapping process will enable an accelerated shrinking of the LF map to zero endemic countries by 2020. When the Global Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis was launched in 2000, diagnostic tools for LF were limited to clinical examination, detection of microfilaria (MF) by microscopy in night blood samples and detection of antibodies to native-antigen preparations. There has been a significant improvement in the traditional LF diagnostic methods in recent years and some new tools are now available. This paper provides an update on the human diagnostic tests available for LF and their current applications as tools in mapping and transmission monitoring. The values of entomological indicators and parasite detection and speciation methods applied to vector populations are also discussed. PMID:25225828

  20. Natriuretic peptides: diagnostic tools and predictors of heart failure outcome.

    PubMed

    Isakson, Susan R; Gardetto, Nancy J; Maisel, Alan S

    2006-11-01

    Congestive heart failure (CHF) is a progressive disease whose outcome largely depends on early, accurate and prompt diagnosis, accompanied by evidence-based treatment. The explosion of uptake of natriuretic peptides (NPs) in clinical practice belies an understanding of how peptides are used. The signal for NP release is the same signal that causes symptoms of CHF, such as increased wall stress. Thus, NPs can reliably add to the information a physician brings to the table as they attempt to diagnose the acutely dyspneic patient with CHF. Additionally, NPs have strong prognostic utility in the emergency room and the hospital. Monitoring of NPs during treatment for acute CHF may help manage the patient. In the future, it is possible that NPs will play a more prominent role in early detection of left ventricular dysfunction as well as guiding chronic CHF treatment. PMID:19804259

  1. Facebook: can it be a diagnostic tool for neurologists?

    PubMed Central

    Mittal, Manoj K; Sloan, Jeff A; Rabinstein, Alejandro A

    2012-01-01

    A 56-year-old woman presented with acute ischaemic stroke with NIHSS 13. She had right eye ptosis and miosis. She and her husband were not sure if her facial features were different than usual. With her consent, we compared her face with her pictures on Facebook. In the absence of any ptosis or miosis in her pictures, she was diagnosed with acute Horner syndrome. Facebook may be a useful tool for the neurologists to define the timing of facial neurological signs. PMID:22914235

  2. Dyspepsia and celiac disease: Prevalence, diagnostic tools and therapy

    PubMed Central

    Petrarca, Laura; Nenna, Raffaella; Mastrogiorgio, Gerarda; Florio, Matteo; Brighi, Manuela; Pontone, Stefano

    2014-01-01

    The prevalence of dyspepsia is up to 40% in population-based study. Functional dyspepsia is an exclusion diagnosis and it is classified as a chronic abdominal pain-related functional disorder, characterized by the presence of persistent or recurrent pain or discomfort centered in the upper abdomen, neither relief by defecation, nor association with the onset of a change in stool frequency or form. Celiac disease (CD) is a common autoimmune enteropathy, with a prevalence around 1% in the general population. Its diagnosis includes a serological screening and an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with multiple biopsies. Gluten-free diet is the only effective treatment. CD diagnosis is often delayed in asymptomatic patients or in individuals with less clinical gastrointestinal symptoms. Several studies performed coeliac disease screening in patients with symptoms suggestive of dyspepsia, showing a biopsy-proved prevalence that ranged from 0.5% to 2%. The typical endoscopic markers of villous atrophy are not sufficiently sensitive, so some endoscopic techniques, such as “water immersion” and confocal endomicroscopy were proposed to improve the diagnostic sensitivity and target biopsies. A recent meta-analysis estimated that the prevalence of CD was higher in patients with dyspepsia, but not in a statistically significant way. However this assumption should be confirmed further larger studies. PMID:25332916

  3. Dyspepsia and celiac disease: Prevalence, diagnostic tools and therapy.

    PubMed

    Petrarca, Laura; Nenna, Raffaella; Mastrogiorgio, Gerarda; Florio, Matteo; Brighi, Manuela; Pontone, Stefano

    2014-09-26

    The prevalence of dyspepsia is up to 40% in population-based study. Functional dyspepsia is an exclusion diagnosis and it is classified as a chronic abdominal pain-related functional disorder, characterized by the presence of persistent or recurrent pain or discomfort centered in the upper abdomen, neither relief by defecation, nor association with the onset of a change in stool frequency or form. Celiac disease (CD) is a common autoimmune enteropathy, with a prevalence around 1% in the general population. Its diagnosis includes a serological screening and an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with multiple biopsies. Gluten-free diet is the only effective treatment. CD diagnosis is often delayed in asymptomatic patients or in individuals with less clinical gastrointestinal symptoms. Several studies performed coeliac disease screening in patients with symptoms suggestive of dyspepsia, showing a biopsy-proved prevalence that ranged from 0.5% to 2%. The typical endoscopic markers of villous atrophy are not sufficiently sensitive, so some endoscopic techniques, such as "water immersion" and confocal endomicroscopy were proposed to improve the diagnostic sensitivity and target biopsies. A recent meta-analysis estimated that the prevalence of CD was higher in patients with dyspepsia, but not in a statistically significant way. However this assumption should be confirmed further larger studies. PMID:25332916

  4. TF-Test Modified: New Diagnostic Tool for Human Enteroparasitosis.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Juliana Barboza de; Santos, Bianca Martins Dos; Gomes, Jancarlo Ferreira; Suzuki, Celso Tetsuo Nagase; Hoshino Shimizu, Sumie; Falcão, Alexandre Xavier; Pierucci, Julia Cestari; Matos, Lucas Vinicius Shigaki de; Bresciani, Katia Denise Saraiva

    2016-07-01

    Intestinal parasitosis is highly prevalent worldwide, being among the main causes of illness and death in humans. Currently, laboratory diagnosis of the intestinal parasites is accomplished through manual technical procedures, mostly developed decades ago, which justifies the development of more sensitive and practical techniques. Therefore, the main objective of this study was to develop, evaluate, and validate a new parasitological technique referred to as TF-Test Modified, in comparison to three conventional parasitological techniques: TF-Test Conventional; Rugai, Mattos & Brisola; and Helm Test/Kato-Katz. For this realization, we collected stool samples from 457 volunteers located in endemic areas of Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil, and statistically compared the techniques. Intestinal protozoa and helminths were detected qualitatively in 42.23% (193/457) of the volunteers by TF-Test Modified technique, against 36.76% (168/457) by TF-Test Conventional, 5.03% (23/457) by Helm Test/Kato-Katz, and 4.16% (19/457) by Rugai, Mattos & Brisola. Furthermore, the new technique presented "almost perfect kappa" agreement in all evaluated parameters with 95% (P < 0.05) of estimation. The current study showed that the TF-Test Modified technique can be comprehensively used in the diagnosis of intestinal protozoa and helminths, and its greater diagnostic sensitivity should help improving the quality of laboratory diagnosis, population surveys, and control of intestinal parasites. PMID:25968065

  5. An accurate modeling, simulation, and analysis tool for predicting and estimating Raman LIDAR system performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grasso, Robert J.; Russo, Leonard P.; Barrett, John L.; Odhner, Jefferson E.; Egbert, Paul I.

    2007-09-01

    BAE Systems presents the results of a program to model the performance of Raman LIDAR systems for the remote detection of atmospheric gases, air polluting hydrocarbons, chemical and biological weapons, and other molecular species of interest. Our model, which integrates remote Raman spectroscopy, 2D and 3D LADAR, and USAF atmospheric propagation codes permits accurate determination of the performance of a Raman LIDAR system. The very high predictive performance accuracy of our model is due to the very accurate calculation of the differential scattering cross section for the specie of interest at user selected wavelengths. We show excellent correlation of our calculated cross section data, used in our model, with experimental data obtained from both laboratory measurements and the published literature. In addition, the use of standard USAF atmospheric models provides very accurate determination of the atmospheric extinction at both the excitation and Raman shifted wavelengths.

  6. Acoustic and ultrasonic signals as diagnostic tools for check valves

    SciTech Connect

    Auyang, M.K. )

    1993-05-01

    A typical nuclear plant has between 60 and 115 safety-related check valves ranging from 2 to 30 in. The majority of these valves control water flow. Recent studies done by the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO), Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) found that many of these safety-related valves were not functioning properly. Typical problems found in these valves included disk flutter, backstop tapping, flow leakage, disk pin and hinge pin wear, or even missing disks. These findings led to INPO's Significant Operating Experience Report (SOER, 1986), and finally, NRC generic letter 8904, which requires that all safety-related check valves in a nuclear plant be regularly monitored. In response to this need, the industry has developed various diagnostic equipment to monitor and test check valves, using technologies ranging from acoustics and ultrasonics to magnetic - even radiography has been considered. Of these, systems that depend on a combination of acoustic and ultrasonic techniques are among the most promising for two reasons: these two technologies supplement each other, making diagnosis of the check valves much more certain than any single technology, and this approach can be made nonintrusive. The nonintrusive feature allows the check valves to be monitored and diagnosed without being disassembled or removed from the piping system. This paper shows that by carefully studying the acoustic and ultrasonic signatures acquired from a check value, either individually or in combination, an individual with the proper training and experience in acoustic and ultrasonic signature analyses can deduce the structural integrity of the check valve with good confidence. Most of the conclusions are derived from controlled experiments in the laboratory where the diagnosis can be verified. Other conclusions were based on test data obtained in the field.

  7. DIAGNOSTIC TOOLS FOR BEAM HALO INVESTIGATION IN SNS LINAC

    SciTech Connect

    Aleksandrov, Alexander V; Blokland, Willem; Liu, Yun; Long, Cary D; Zhukov, Alexander P

    2012-01-01

    Uncontrolled beam loss is a major concern in the operation of a high intensity hadron linac. A low density cloud of particles with large oscillation amplitudes, so called halo, can form around the dense regular beam core. This halo can be a direct or indirect cause of beam loss. There is experimental evidence of halo growing in the SNS linac and limiting the further reduction of beam loss. A set of tools is being developed for detecting of the halo and investigating its origin and dynamics. The set includes high resolution emittance measurements in the injector, laser based emittance measurements at 1 GeV, and high resolution profile measurements along the linac. We will present our experience with useful measurement techniques and data analysis algorithms.

  8. DeconMSn: A Software Tool for accurate parent ion monoisotopic mass determination for tandem mass spectra

    SciTech Connect

    Mayampurath, Anoop M.; Jaitly, Navdeep; Purvine, Samuel O.; Monroe, Matthew E.; Auberry, Kenneth J.; Adkins, Joshua N.; Smith, Richard D.

    2008-04-01

    We present a new software tool for tandem MS analyses that: • accurately calculates the monoisotopic mass and charge of high–resolution parent ions • accurately operates regardless of the mass selected for fragmentation • performs independent of instrument settings • enables optimal selection of search mass tolerance for high mass accuracy experiments • is open source and thus can be tailored to individual needs • incorporates a SVM-based charge detection algorithm for analyzing low resolution tandem MS spectra • creates multiple output data formats (.dta, .MGF) • handles .RAW files and .mzXML formats • compatible with SEQUEST, MASCOT, X!Tandem

  9. Fitting cognitive diagnostic assessment to the Concept Assessment Tool for Statics (CATS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santiago Roman, Aidsa Ivette

    A concept inventory (CI) is a multiple-choice instrument designed to evaluate whether a person has an accurate, working knowledge of a specific set of concepts. An important role of CI's is to provide instructors with clues about the pre-conceptions (or misconceptions) their students hold which may be actively interfering with learning. Only a few engineering CI's have been able to be applied successfully in instructional settings, due in part to statistical analysis techniques that are typically applied to the instrument. These techniques include psychometric interpretative techniques such as Classical Test Theory (CTT) and Item Response Theory (IRT), which measure the item performance data of the CI's. However, these strategies do not measure students' cognitive abilities (misconceptions). To begin filing this gap, the objective of this study was to determine the applicability of a new statistical method called the Fusion Model to the Concept Assessment Tool for Statics (CATS) among engineering students from various US universities. Specifically, the research question that guided this study was: Can the Fusion Model be appropriately used with the Cognitive Assessment Tool for Statics (CATS) to diagnostically measure students' cognitive understanding of Statics concepts? In this study, the Fusion Model was applied to CATS through a four-phase procedure. Each phase had a specific objective that was tied to the primary research question. The analysis performed resulted in the generation of a Q-matrix that relates a set of cognitive attributes to specific questions. These attributes were determined using the expertise of the author of this study and most importantly the developer of CATS. Results of the study indicated that CATS has high capability to be used as diagnostic assessment, and also identified items (questions) that needed to be revised because they were not able to discriminate between examinees who were masters and non-masters of the specified attributes

  10. A Novel Screening and Diagnostic Tool for Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Disorders for Telepsychiatry

    PubMed Central

    Malhotra, Savita; Chakrabarti, Subho; Shah, Ruchita; Mehta, Anurati; Gupta, Aarzoo; Sharma, Minali

    2015-01-01

    Background: A diagnostic tool designed as part of a telepsychiatry application for diagnosis and management of child and adolescent psychiatric disorders in India was developed considering the paucity of trained child psychiatrists and mental health professionals in India. Materials and Methods: The diagnostic tool consisted of screening and 10th revision of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-10) criteria-based diagnostic algorithms for 18 psychiatric disorders seen in childhood and adolescence. Accuracy of diagnoses and feasibility of use of the tool was examined by comparing it with detailed semi-structured clinical evaluations by a qualified psychiatrist with 50 psychiatric patients (children and adolescents). Statistical Analysis: Descriptive analyses and paired t-tests were conducted to compare the mean number of diagnosis generated by the two interviews. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values were computed for the screening and the diagnostic sub-modules of the tool, compared to the clinical diagnoses. Kappa coefficients were computed to assess agreement between the diagnoses generated by the diagnostic sub-module and the clinical diagnoses. Results: The screening sub-module had high sensitivity, high specificity and negative predictive values for all disorders. For the diagnostic sub-module, there was moderate (kappa-0.4–0.6) to substantial agreement (kappa > 0.6) for all the disorders, (except psychosis) and high sensitivity (barring a few disorders) and specificity for almost all the disorders. Positive predictive values were found to be acceptable to high for most disorders, with consistently high negative predictive values. Conclusion: The new tool was found to be comprehensive, reasonably short and feasible. Results showed acceptable level of accuracy in diagnosis generated by the tool. PMID:26424901

  11. Watershed modeling tools and data for prognostic and diagnostic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chambel-Leitao, P.; Brito, D.; Neves, R.

    2009-04-01

    When eutrophication is considered an important process to control it can be accomplished reducing nitrogen and phosphorus losses from both point and nonpoint sources and helping to assess the effectiveness of the pollution reduction strategy. HARP-NUT guidelines (Guidelines on Harmonized Quantification and Reporting Procedures for Nutrients) (Borgvang & Selvik, 2000) are presented by OSPAR as the best common quantification and reporting procedures for calculating the reduction of nutrient inputs. In 2000, OSPAR HARP-NUT guidelines on a trial basis. They were intended to serve as a tool for OSPAR Contracting Parties to report, in a harmonized manner, their different commitments, present or future, with regard to nutrients under the OSPAR Convention, in particular the "Strategy to Combat Eutrophication". HARP-NUT Guidelines (Borgvang and Selvik, 2000; Schoumans, 2003) were developed to quantify and report on the individual sources of nitrogen and phosphorus discharges/losses to surface waters (Source Orientated Approach). These results can be compared to nitrogen and phosphorus figures with the total riverine loads measured at downstream monitoring points (Load Orientated Approach), as load reconciliation. Nitrogen and phosphorus retention in river systems represents the connecting link between the "Source Orientated Approach" and the "Load Orientated Approach". Both approaches are necessary for verification purposes and both may be needed for providing the information required for the various commitments. Guidelines 2,3,4,5 are mainly concerned with the sources estimation. They present a set of simple calculations that allow the estimation of the origin of loads. Guideline 6 is a particular case where the application of a model is advised, in order to estimate the sources of nutrients from diffuse sources associated with land use/land cover. The model chosen for this was SWAT (Arnold & Fohrer, 2005) model because it is suggested in the guideline 6 and because it

  12. Watershed modeling tools and data for prognostic and diagnostic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chambel-Leitao, P.; Brito, D.; Neves, R.

    2009-04-01

    When eutrophication is considered an important process to control it can be accomplished reducing nitrogen and phosphorus losses from both point and nonpoint sources and helping to assess the effectiveness of the pollution reduction strategy. HARP-NUT guidelines (Guidelines on Harmonized Quantification and Reporting Procedures for Nutrients) (Borgvang & Selvik, 2000) are presented by OSPAR as the best common quantification and reporting procedures for calculating the reduction of nutrient inputs. In 2000, OSPAR HARP-NUT guidelines on a trial basis. They were intended to serve as a tool for OSPAR Contracting Parties to report, in a harmonized manner, their different commitments, present or future, with regard to nutrients under the OSPAR Convention, in particular the "Strategy to Combat Eutrophication". HARP-NUT Guidelines (Borgvang and Selvik, 2000; Schoumans, 2003) were developed to quantify and report on the individual sources of nitrogen and phosphorus discharges/losses to surface waters (Source Orientated Approach). These results can be compared to nitrogen and phosphorus figures with the total riverine loads measured at downstream monitoring points (Load Orientated Approach), as load reconciliation. Nitrogen and phosphorus retention in river systems represents the connecting link between the "Source Orientated Approach" and the "Load Orientated Approach". Both approaches are necessary for verification purposes and both may be needed for providing the information required for the various commitments. Guidelines 2,3,4,5 are mainly concerned with the sources estimation. They present a set of simple calculations that allow the estimation of the origin of loads. Guideline 6 is a particular case where the application of a model is advised, in order to estimate the sources of nutrients from diffuse sources associated with land use/land cover. The model chosen for this was SWAT (Arnold & Fohrer, 2005) model because it is suggested in the guideline 6 and because it

  13. The MDP skull uptake test: A new diagnostic tool

    SciTech Connect

    Ell, P.J.; Jarritt, P.H.; Cullum, I.; Lui, D.

    1984-01-01

    An original approach to the measurement of bone turnover is presented. With SPECT, the authors have measured in pgr/ml, the uptake of MDP by the skull in man. The Cleon 710 scanner, ring phantoms and bone biopsies were used for ultimate in vivo/in vitro count recovery correlation and calibration. A normal range for 24 patients was found: 8.5 to 19.5 pgr/ml with a mean of 14. For patients with bony metastases (12), the values were: 22.5 to 50, mean of 30. For 5 patients with osteomalacia, the values were 46 to 68, mean of 62: for 12 patients with hyperparathyroidism, the values were 37 to 48.5, mean of 43. In 3 patients with Pagets disease, the values were 58.5 to 75, with a mean of 65. In 76 patients with metastatic disease to bone, the conventional wholebody bone scan was investigated against the following: 24h wholebody retention of MDP (WBR), skull uptake as described and GFR by Cr-51-DTPA. There is a correlation between GFR and WBR - r=0.67. There is a lesser correlation between GFR and skull uptake - r=0.3. There is no correlation between skull uptake and WBR - r=0.1. The comparison of skull uptake data with normal whole body bone scans leads to a significant proportion of cancer patients with positive skull uptake data. Monostotic disease (especially if metabolic in nature) expresses itself by abnormal skull uptake even if the clinical site of abnormality lies outside the skull. This new technique is ideal as a tool to investigate phosphonate concentration in bone. With it, the authors have shown the effect of specific activity of label on skull uptake, which increases as the specific activity of labelled MDP decreases.

  14. Reliable and sample saving gene expression analysis approach for diagnostic tool development.

    PubMed

    Port, Matthias; Seidl, Christof; Ruf, Christian G; Riecke, Armin; Meineke, Viktor; Abend, Michael

    2012-08-01

    This work answers the question of whether it is necessary to hybridize individual instead of pooled RNA samples on microarrays for screening gene targets suitable as diagnostic tools for radiation exposure scenarios, while at the same time meeting comparable microarray quality criteria. For developing new clinical diagnostic tools, a two-stage study design was employed in five projects. At first, pooled and not individual RNA samples were hybridized on microarrays for screening purposes. Potential gene candidates were selected based on their fold-change only. This was followed by a validation/quantification step using individual RNA samples and quantitative RT-PCR. Quality criteria from the screening approach with pooled RNA samples were compared with published data from the MicroArray Quality Control (MAQC) consortium that hybridized each reference RNA sample separately and established quality criteria for microarrays. When comparing both approaches, only insignificant differences for quality criteria such as false positives, sensitivity, specificity, and overall agreement were found. However, material, costs, and time were drastically reduced when hybridizing pooled RNA and gene targets applicable for clinical diagnostic purposes could be successfully selected. In search of new diagnostic tools for radiation exposure scenarios, the two stage study design using either pooled or individual RNA samples on microarrays shows comparable quality criteria, but the RNA pooling approach saves unique material, costs, and efforts and successfully selects gene targets that can be used for the desired diagnostic purposes. PMID:22951474

  15. Implementing the K-SADS-PL as a standard diagnostic tool: Effects on clinical diagnoses.

    PubMed

    Matuschek, Tina; Jaeger, Sonia; Stadelmann, Stephanie; Dölling, Katrin; Grunewald, Madlen; Weis, Steffi; von Klitzing, Kai; Döhnert, Mirko

    2016-02-28

    Diagnostic interviews are valuable tools for generating reliable and valid psychiatric diagnoses. However, little is known about the diagnostic effects of implementing such an interview into the standard diagnostic procedure of a child psychiatric clinic. Therefore, we reviewed discharge diagnoses of psychiatric patients (age: 8-12 years; combined sample of inpatients and day hospital patients) over two intervals before and after implementing the semi-structured diagnostic interview K-SADS-PL as a diagnostic tool during intake. Each interval was a two year period spanning from 2009-2010 (pre sample; n=177) and from 2012-2013 (post sample; n=132). The number of diagnoses per patient and the co-morbidity rate increased significantly in the post sample. Furthermore, the percentage of children with a nonspecific diagnosis "other mixed disorders of conduct and emotions" (ICD-10: F92.8) decreased significantly after using the K-SADS-PL. Regarding the main diagnostic categories, a significant increase in the number of anxiety disorders and stress-related and somatoform disorders was found in the post sample. The results suggest that implementing a semi-structured interview into the daily routine of child psychiatry may have a substantial impact on discharge diagnoses. Practical implications are discussed and ideas for future research are given. PMID:26724908

  16. Diagnostic Tools for Bluetongue and Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease Viruses Applicable to North American Veterinary Diagnosticians.

    PubMed

    Wilson, William C; Daniels, Peter; Ostlund, Eileen N; Johnson, Donna E; Oberst, Richard D; Hairgrove, Thomas B; Mediger, Jessica; McIntosh, Michael T

    2015-06-01

    This review provides an overview of current and potential new diagnostic tests for bluetongue (BT) and epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) viruses compiled from international participants of the Orbivirus Gap Analysis Workshop, Diagnostic Group. The emphasis of this review is on diagnostic tools available to North American veterinary diagnosticians. Standard diagnostic tests are readily available for BT/EHD viruses, and there are described tests that are published in the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) Terrestrial Manual. There is however considerable variation in the diagnostic approach to these viruses. Serological assays are well established, and many laboratories are experienced in running these assays. Numerous nucleic acid amplification assays are also available for BT virus (BTV) and EHD virus (EHDV). Although there is considerable experience with BTV reverse-transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR), there are no standards or comparisons of the protocols used by various state and federal veterinary diagnostic laboratories. Methods for genotyping BTV and EHDV isolates are available and are valuable tools for monitoring and analyzing circulating viruses. These methods include RT-PCR panels or arrays, RT-PCR and sequencing of specific genome segments, or the use of next-generation sequencing. In addition to enabling virus characterization, use of advanced molecular detection methods, including DNA microarrays and next-generation sequencing, significantly enhance the ability to detect unique virus strains that may arise through genetic drift, recombination, or viral genome segment reassortment, as well as incursions of new virus strains from other geographical areas. PMID:26086557

  17. Laser-induced accurate frontal cortex damage: a new tool for brain study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flores, Gonzalo; Khotiaintsev, Sergei N.; Sanchez-Huerta, Maria L.; Ibanes, Osvaldo; Hernandez, Adan; Silva, Adriana B.; Calderon, Rafael; Ayala, Griselda; Marroquin, Javier; Svirid, Vladimir; Khotiaintsev, Yuri V.

    1999-01-01

    New laser-based technique for anatomical-functional study of the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) of the brain of experimental animals (rats) is presented. The technique is based on making accurate well-controlled lesions to small MPFC and subsequent observing behavioral alterations in the lesioned animals relative to control ones. Laser produces smaller and more accurate lesions in comparison to those obtained by traditional methods, such as: mechanical action, chemical means, and electrical currents. For producing the brain lesions, a 10 W CO2 CW laser is employed for reasons of its sufficiently high power, which is combined with relatively low cost-per-Watt ratio. In our experience, such power rating is sufficient for making MPFC lesions. The laser radiation is applied in a form of pulse series via hollow circular metallic waveguide made of stainless steel. The waveguide is of inner diameter 1.3 mm and 95 mm long. The anesthetized animals are placed in stereotaxic instrument. Via perforations made in the skull bone, the MPFC is exposed to the laser radiation. Several weeks later (after animal recuperation), standard behavioral tests are performed. They reveal behavioral changes, which point to a damage of some small regions of the MPFC. These results correlate with the histological data, which reveal the existence of small and accurate MPFC lesions. The present technique has good prospects for use in anatomical- functional studies of brain by areas. In addition, this technique appears to have considerable promise as a treatment method for some pathologies, e.g. the Parkinson's disease.

  18. Spectroscopy as a diagnostic tool for urban soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brook, Anna; Kopel, Daniella; Wittenberg, Lea

    2015-04-01

    Anthropogenic urban soil are the foundation of the urban green infrastructure, the green net quality is as good as each of its patches. In early days of pedology urban soil has been recognized with respect to contamination and the risks for human health but in study performed since the 70s, the importance of urban soil for the urban ecology became increasingly significant (Gómez-Baggethun and Barton 2013). Urban soils are highly disturbed land that was created by the process of urbanization. The dominant agent in the creation of urban soils is human activity which modifies the natural soil through mixing, filling or by contamination of land surfaces so as to create a layer of urban soil which can be more than 50 cm thick (Pavao-Zuckerman 2008). The objective of this study is to determine the extent to which field spectroscopy methods can be used to extend the knowledge of urban soils features and components. The majority of the studies on urban soils concentrate on identifying and mapping of pollution mostly heavy metals. In this study a top-down analysis is developed - a simple and intuitive spectral feature for detecting the presence of minerals, organic matter and pollutants in mixed soil samples. The developed method uses spectral activity (SA) detection in a structured hierarchical approach to quickly and, more importantly, correctly identify dominant spectral features. The developed method is adopted by multiple in-production tools including continuum removal normalization, guided by polynomial generalization, and spectral-likelihood algorithms: orthogonal subspace projection (OSP) and iterative spectral mixture analysis (ISMA) were compared to feature likelihood methods (Li et al. 2014). Results of the proposed top-down unmixing method suggest that the analysis is made very fast due to the simplified hierarchy which avoids the high-learning curve associated with unmixing algorithms showed that the most abundant components were coarse organic matter 12

  19. Automated innovative diagnostic, data management and communication tool, for improving malaria vector control in endemic settings.

    PubMed

    Vontas, John; Mitsakakis, Konstantinos; Zengerle, Roland; Yewhalaw, Delenasaw; Sikaala, Chadwick Haadezu; Etang, Josiane; Fallani, Matteo; Carman, Bill; Müller, Pie; Chouaïbou, Mouhamadou; Coleman, Marlize; Coleman, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Malaria is a life-threatening disease that caused more than 400,000 deaths in sub-Saharan Africa in 2015. Mass prevention of the disease is best achieved by vector control which heavily relies on the use of insecticides. Monitoring mosquito vector populations is an integral component of control programs and a prerequisite for effective interventions. Several individual methods are used for this task; however, there are obstacles to their uptake, as well as challenges in organizing, interpreting and communicating vector population data. The Horizon 2020 project "DMC-MALVEC" consortium will develop a fully integrated and automated multiplex vector-diagnostic platform (LabDisk) for characterizing mosquito populations in terms of species composition, Plasmodium infections and biochemical insecticide resistance markers. The LabDisk will be interfaced with a Disease Data Management System (DDMS), a custom made data management software which will collate and manage data from routine entomological monitoring activities providing information in a timely fashion based on user needs and in a standardized way. The ResistanceSim, a serious game, a modern ICT platform that uses interactive ways of communicating guidelines and exemplifying good practices of optimal use of interventions in the health sector will also be a key element. The use of the tool will teach operational end users the value of quality data (relevant, timely and accurate) to make informed decisions. The integrated system (LabDisk, DDMS & ResistanceSim) will be evaluated in four malaria endemic countries, representative of the vector control challenges in sub-Saharan Africa, (Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia and Zambia), highly representative of malaria settings with different levels of endemicity and vector control challenges, to support informed decision-making in vector control and disease management. PMID:27225553

  20. Development of a non-contact diagnostic tool for high power lasers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, Jed A.; Guttman, Jeffrey L.; McCauley, John

    2016-03-01

    High power lasers in excess of 1 kW generate enough Rayleigh scatter, even in the NIR, to be detected by silicon based sensor arrays. A lens and camera system in an off-axis position can therefore be used as a non-contact diagnostic tool for high power lasers. Despite the simplicity of the concept, technical challenges have been encountered in the development of an instrument referred to as BeamWatch. These technical challenges include reducing background radiation, achieving high signal to noise ratio, reducing saturation events caused by particulates crossing the beam, correcting images to achieve accurate beam width measurements, creating algorithms for the removal of non-uniformities, and creating two simultaneous views of the beam from orthogonal directions. Background radiation in the image was reduced by the proper positioning of the back plane and the placement of absorbing materials on the internal surfaces of BeamWatch. Maximizing signal to noise ratio, important to the real-time monitoring of focus position, was aided by increasing lens throughput. The number of particulates crossing the beam path was reduced by creating a positive pressure inside BeamWatch. Algorithms in the software removed non-uniformities in the data prior to generating waist width, divergence, BPP, and M2 results. A dual axis version of BeamWatch was developed by the use of mirrors. By its nature BeamWatch produced results similar to scanning slit measurements. Scanning slit data was therefore taken and compared favorably with BeamWatch results.

  1. High-performance computing and networking as tools for accurate emission computed tomography reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Passeri, A; Formiconi, A R; De Cristofaro, M T; Pupi, A; Meldolesi, U

    1997-04-01

    It is well known that the quantitative potential of emission computed tomography (ECT) relies on the ability to compensate for resolution, attenuation and scatter effects. Reconstruction algorithms which are able to take these effects into account are highly demanding in terms of computing resources. The reported work aimed to investigate the use of a parallel high-performance computing platform for ECT reconstruction taking into account an accurate model of the acquisition of single-photon emission tomographic (SPET) data. An iterative algorithm with an accurate model of the variable system response was ported on the MIMD (Multiple Instruction Multiple Data) parallel architecture of a 64-node Cray T3D massively parallel computer. The system was organized to make it easily accessible even from low-cost PC-based workstations through standard TCP/IP networking. A complete brain study of 30 (64x64) slices could be reconstructed from a set of 90 (64x64) projections with ten iterations of the conjugate gradients algorithm in 9 s, corresponding to an actual speed-up factor of 135. This work demonstrated the possibility of exploiting remote high-performance computing and networking resources from hospital sites by means of low-cost workstations using standard communication protocols without particular problems for routine use. The achievable speed-up factors allow the assessment of the clinical benefit of advanced reconstruction techniques which require a heavy computational burden for the compensation effects such as variable spatial resolution, scatter and attenuation. The possibility of using the same software on the same hardware platform with data acquired in different laboratories with various kinds of SPET instrumentation is appealing for software quality control and for the evaluation of the clinical impact of the reconstruction methods. PMID:9096089

  2. Facilitating the selection and creation of accurate interatomic potentials with robust tools and characterization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trautt, Zachary T.; Tavazza, Francesca; Becker, Chandler A.

    2015-10-01

    The Materials Genome Initiative seeks to significantly decrease the cost and time of development and integration of new materials. Within the domain of atomistic simulations, several roadblocks stand in the way of reaching this goal. While the NIST Interatomic Potentials Repository hosts numerous interatomic potentials (force fields), researchers cannot immediately determine the best choice(s) for their use case. Researchers developing new potentials, specifically those in restricted environments, lack a comprehensive portfolio of efficient tools capable of calculating and archiving the properties of their potentials. This paper elucidates one solution to these problems, which uses Python-based scripts that are suitable for rapid property evaluation and human knowledge transfer. Calculation results are visible on the repository website, which reduces the time required to select an interatomic potential for a specific use case. Furthermore, property evaluation scripts are being integrated with modern platforms to improve discoverability and access of materials property data. To demonstrate these scripts and features, we will discuss the automation of stacking fault energy calculations and their application to additional elements. While the calculation methodology was developed previously, we are using it here as a case study in simulation automation and property calculations. We demonstrate how the use of Python scripts allows for rapid calculation in a more easily managed way where the calculations can be modified, and the results presented in user-friendly and concise ways. Additionally, the methods can be incorporated into other efforts, such as openKIM.

  3. A MATLAB-based tool for accurate detection of perfect overlapping and nested inverted repeats in DNA sequences

    PubMed Central

    Sreeskandarajan, Sutharzan; Flowers, Michelle M.; Karro, John E.; Liang, Chun

    2014-01-01

    Summary: Palindromic sequences, or inverted repeats (IRs), in DNA sequences involve important biological processes such as DNA–protein binding, DNA replication and DNA transposition. Development of bioinformatics tools that are capable of accurately detecting perfect IRs can enable genome-wide studies of IR patterns in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Different from conventional string-comparison approaches, we propose a novel algorithm that uses a cumulative score system based on a prime number representation of nucleotide bases. We then implemented this algorithm as a MATLAB-based program for perfect IR detection. In comparison with other existing tools, our program demonstrates a high accuracy in detecting nested and overlapping IRs. Availability and implementation: The source code is freely available on (http://bioinfolab.miamioh.edu/bioinfolab/palindrome.php) Contact: liangc@miamioh.edu or karroje@miamioh.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:24215021

  4. The Hα surface brightness — radius plane as a diagnostic tool for photoionized nebulae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frew, David J.; Bojičić, Ivan S.; Parker, Quentin A.

    2016-07-01

    The Hα surface brightness - radius (SHα-r) relation is a robust distance indicator for planetary nebulae (PNe), further enhanced by different populations of PNe having distinct loci in SHα-r space. Other types of photoionized nebulae also plot in quite distinct regions in the SHa-r plane, allowing its use as a diagnostic tool. In particular, the nova shells and massive star ejecta (MSE) plot on relatively tight loci illustrating their evolutionary sequences. For the MSE, there is potential to develop a distance indicator for these objects, based on their trend in SHα-r space. As high-resolution, narrowband surveys of the nearest galaxies become more commonplace, the SHα-r plane is a potentially useful diagnostic tool to help identify the various ionized nebulae in these systems.

  5. Feasibility of streamlining an interactive Bayesian-based diagnostic support tool designed for clinical practice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Po-Hao; Botzolakis, Emmanuel; Mohan, Suyash; Bryan, R. N.; Cook, Tessa

    2016-03-01

    In radiology, diagnostic errors occur either through the failure of detection or incorrect interpretation. Errors are estimated to occur in 30-35% of all exams and contribute to 40-54% of medical malpractice litigations. In this work, we focus on reducing incorrect interpretation of known imaging features. Existing literature categorizes cognitive bias leading a radiologist to an incorrect diagnosis despite having correctly recognized the abnormal imaging features: anchoring bias, framing effect, availability bias, and premature closure. Computational methods make a unique contribution, as they do not exhibit the same cognitive biases as a human. Bayesian networks formalize the diagnostic process. They modify pre-test diagnostic probabilities using clinical and imaging features, arriving at a post-test probability for each possible diagnosis. To translate Bayesian networks to clinical practice, we implemented an entirely web-based open-source software tool. In this tool, the radiologist first selects a network of choice (e.g. basal ganglia). Then, large, clearly labeled buttons displaying salient imaging features are displayed on the screen serving both as a checklist and for input. As the radiologist inputs the value of an extracted imaging feature, the conditional probabilities of each possible diagnosis are updated. The software presents its level of diagnostic discrimination using a Pareto distribution chart, updated with each additional imaging feature. Active collaboration with the clinical radiologist is a feasible approach to software design and leads to design decisions closely coupling the complex mathematics of conditional probability in Bayesian networks with practice.

  6. Application of Diagnostic Analysis Tools to the Ares I Thrust Vector Control System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maul, William A.; Melcher, Kevin J.; Chicatelli, Amy K.; Johnson, Stephen B.

    2010-01-01

    The NASA Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle is being designed to support missions to the International Space Station (ISS), to the Moon, and beyond. The Ares I is undergoing design and development utilizing commercial-off-the-shelf tools and hardware when applicable, along with cutting edge launch technologies and state-of-the-art design and development. In support of the vehicle s design and development, the Ares Functional Fault Analysis group was tasked to develop an Ares Vehicle Diagnostic Model (AVDM) and to demonstrate the capability of that model to support failure-related analyses and design integration. One important component of the AVDM is the Upper Stage (US) Thrust Vector Control (TVC) diagnostic model-a representation of the failure space of the US TVC subsystem. This paper first presents an overview of the AVDM, its development approach, and the software used to implement the model and conduct diagnostic analysis. It then uses the US TVC diagnostic model to illustrate details of the development, implementation, analysis, and verification processes. Finally, the paper describes how the AVDM model can impact both design and ground operations, and how some of these impacts are being realized during discussions of US TVC diagnostic analyses with US TVC designers.

  7. On the Development of a Computer Based Diagnostic Assessment Tool to Help in Teaching and Learning Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ahmad, Afaq; Al-Mashari, Ahmed; Al-Lawati, Ali

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a computer based diagnostic tool developed to facilitate the learning process. The developed tool is capable of generating possible error syndromes associated with the answers received. The developed tool simulates the error pattern of the test results and then accordingly models the action plan to help in children's learning…

  8. Saliva as a non-invasive diagnostic tool for inflammation and insulin-resistance

    PubMed Central

    Desai, Gauri S; Mathews, Suresh T

    2014-01-01

    Saliva has been progressively studied as a non-invasive and relatively stress-free diagnostic alternative to blood. Currently, saliva testing is used for clinical assessment of hormonal perturbations, detection of HIV antibodies, DNA analysis, alcohol screening, and drug testing. Recently, there has been increasing interest in evaluating the diagnostic potential of saliva in obesity, inflammation, and insulin-resistance. Current literature has demonstrated elevated levels of inflammatory biomarkers including C-reactive protein, tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-6, and interferon-γ in saliva of obese/overweight children and adults. Salivary antioxidant status has also been studied as a measure of oxidative stress in individuals with type 2 diabetes. Further, several studies have demonstrated correlations of salivary markers of stress and insulin resistance including cortisol, insulin, adiponectin, and resistin with serum concentrations. These findings suggest the potential diagnostic value of saliva in health screening and risk stratification studies, particularly in the pediatric population, with implications for inflammatory, metabolic and cardiovascular conditions. However, additional studies are required to standardize saliva collection and storage procedures, validate analytical techniques for biomarker detection, and establish reference ranges for routine clinical use. The purpose of this review is to summarize and evaluate recent advancements in using saliva as a diagnostic tool for inflammation and insulin-resistance. PMID:25512775

  9. STS-57 Spacehab-01 Tools and Diagnostics System (TDS) displayed at bench review

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Tools and Diagnostics System (TDS) experiment equipment is displayed on a table top during the STS-57 Spacehab-01 (Commercial Middeck Augmentation Module (CMAM)) bench review at Boeing's Flight Equipment Processing Facility (FEPF) located near JSC. TDS will be stored in Spacehab-01 aft locker AC10 and includes electronic circuit boards, a soldering iron assembly, goggles, a printed circuit board holder, a portable battery charger, and a portable electronic diagnostic equipment package. TDS' sponsor is the Flight Crew Support Division, Space and Life Sciences Directorate, JSC. It will evaluate microgravity effects on the physics and human factors of soldering, the operation of the battery charger, and the operation of the diagnositic equipment package. Photo taken by NASA JSC contract photographer Benny Benavides.

  10. Using Wood’s Light as a Diagnostic Tool for Vaginal Atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Ulubay, Mustafa; Fidan, Ulas; Keskin, Ugur; Alanbay, Ibrahim; Karaca, Riza

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Wood’s light lamp is a device that emits ultraviolet (UV) light and is a useful diagnostic tool for dermatologic disorders. The change in the thickness of vaginal mucosa, in vaginal atrophy, causes a change in its colour under Wood’s light. We wanted to assess the feasibility of Wood’s light (WL) as a diagnostic tool for vaginal atrophy. Materials and Methods: The study was conducted at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology from 1 March 2013 to 1 September 2014. We evaluated 45 healthy postmenopausal women with atrophic vaginitis (study group) and 45 healthy, reproductive-aged women as a control group. All patients underwent WL and routine gynaecological examinations for this study. Results: Ninety patients were selected for this study: 45 postmenopausal women suffering atrophic vaginitis symptoms like vaginal dryness, dyspareunia, vulvar pruritus, and signs like pale, smooth, dry, fragile vaginal epithelium, areas of petechiae, and rash, and 45 healthy reproductive-aged women without vaginal atrophy. Thirty-six of the postmenopausal women’s vaginal mucosa appeared pale royal green under WL indicative of vaginal atrophy. Thirty-nine of reproductive-aged women’s (n: 45) vaginal mucosa were not visualized as pale royal green fluorescent images under the WL. Conclusion: Using Wood’s light to diagnose vaginal atrophy is a new use for the old device and may be a reliable, and cheap tool for diagnosing vaginal atrophy. Diagnostic accuracy and cost-effectiveness of Wood’s light will be better optimized in further trials. PMID:25738039

  11. The Resolution Integral – a tool for characterising the performance of diagnostic ultrasound scanners

    PubMed Central

    Inglis, Scott; Pye, Stephen D

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, we describe how the resolution integral can be used as a tool for characterising the grey-scale imaging of diagnostic ultrasound scanners. The definitions of resolution integral, characteristic resolution and depth of field are discussed in relation to grey-scale imaging performance, together with a method of measuring these parameters using the Edinburgh Pipe Phantom. We show how the characteristic resolution and depth of field can be used to quantify the differences between transducers designed for different applications and how they are useful in identifying and quantifying changes in the performance of individual transducers.

  12. GPLS VME MODULE: A DIAGNOSTIC AND DISPLAY TOOL FOR NSLS MICRO SYSTEMS.

    SciTech Connect

    RAMAMOORTHY,S.; SMITH,J.D.

    1999-03-29

    The General Purpose Light Source VME module is an integral part of every front-end micro in the NSLS control system. The board incorporates features such as a video character generator, clock signals, time-of-day clock, a VME bus interrupter and general-purpose digital inputs and outputs. This module serves as a valuable diagnostic and real-time display tool for the micro development as well as for the final operational systems. This paper describes the functions provided by the board for the NSLS micro control monitor software.

  13. Ocular static and dynamic light scattering: a noninvasive diagnostic tool for eye research and clinical practice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ansari, Rafat R.

    2004-01-01

    The noninvasive techniques of static and dynamic light scattering are emerging as valuable diagnostic tools for the early detection of ocular and systemic diseases. These include corneal abnormalities, pigmentary dispersion syndrome, glaucoma, cataract, diabetic vitreopathy, and possibly macular degeneration. Systemic conditions such as diabetes and possibly Alzheimer's disease can potentially be detected early via ocular tissues. The current state of development of these techniques for application to ophthalmic research and ultimately clinical practice is reviewed. (c) 2004 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.

  14. Does ultrasonography accurately diagnose acute cholecystitis? Improving diagnostic accuracy based on a review at a regional hospital

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Hamish; Marsh, Ian; Doyle, Jason

    2014-01-01

    Background Acute cholecystitis is one of the most common diseases requiring emergency surgery. Ultrasonography is an accurate test for cholelithiasis but has a high false-negative rate for acute cholecystitis. The Murphy sign and laboratory tests performed independently are also not particularly accurate. This study was designed to review the accuracy of ultrasonography for diagnosing acute cholecystitis in a regional hospital. Methods We studied all emergency cholecystectomies performed over a 1-year period. All imaging studies were reviewed by a single radiologist, and all pathology was reviewed by a single pathologist. The reviewers were blinded to each other’s results. Results A total of 107 patients required an emergency cholecystectomy in the study period; 83 of them underwent ultrasonography. Interradiologist agreement was 92% for ultrasonography. For cholelithiasis, ultrasonography had 100% sensitivity, 18% specificity, 81% positive predictive value (PPV) and 100% negative predictive value (NPV). For acute cholecystitis, it had 54% sensitivity, 81% specificity, 85% PPV and 47% NPV. All patients had chronic cholecystitis and 67% had acute cholecystitis on histology. When combined with positive Murphy sign and elevated neutrophil count, an ultrasound showing cholelithiasis or acute cholecystitis yielded a sensitivity of 74%, specificity of 62%, PPV of 80% and NPV of 53% for the diagnosis of acute cholecystitis. Conclusion Ultrasonography alone has a high rate of false-negative studies for acute cholecystitis. However, a higher rate of accurate diagnosis can be achieved using a triad of positive Murphy sign, elevated neutrophil count and an ultrasound showing cholelithiasis or cholecystitis. PMID:24869607

  15. Conceptualization of category-oriented likelihood ratio: a useful tool for clinical diagnostic reasoning

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background In the diagnostic reasoning process medical students and novice physicians need to be made aware of the diagnostic values of the clinical findings (including history, signs, and symptoms) to make an appropriate diagnostic decision. Diagnostic reasoning has been understood in light of two paradigms on clinical reasoning: problem solving and decision making. They advocate the reasoning strategies used by expert physicians and the statistical models of reasoning, respectively. Evidence-based medicine (EBM) applies decision theory to the clinical diagnosis, which can be a challenging topic in medical education. This theoretical article tries to compare evidence-based diagnosis with expert-based strategies in clinical diagnosis and also defines a novel concept of category-oriented likelihood ratio (LR) to propose a new model combining both aforementioned methods. Discussion Evidence-based medicine advocates the use of quantitative evidence to estimate the probability of diseases more accurately and objectively; however, the published evidence for a given diagnosis cannot practically be utilized in primary care, especially if the patient is complaining of a nonspecific problem such as abdominal pain that could have a long list of differential diagnoses. In this case, expert physicians examine the key clinical findings that could differentiate between broader categories of diseases such as organic and non-organic disease categories to shorten the list of differential diagnoses. To approach nonspecific problems, not only do the experts revise the probability estimate of specific diseases, but also they revise the probability estimate of the categories of diseases by using the available clinical findings. Summary To make this approach analytical and objective, we need to know how much more likely it is for a key clinical finding to be present in patients with one of the diseases of a specific category versus those with a disease not included in that category. In

  16. Utility of Discography as a Preoperative Diagnostic Tool for Intradural Lumbar Disc Herniation

    PubMed Central

    Toyoda, Hiromitsu; Terai, Hidetomi; Dohzono, Sho; Hori, Yusuke; Nakamura, Hiroaki

    2016-01-01

    Preoperative definitive diagnosis of intradural lumbar disc herniation (ILDH) is difficult despite the availability of various neuroradiological investigative tools. We present a case of ILDH diagnosed preoperatively by discography and computed tomography-discography (disco-CT).The patient was a 63-year-old man with acute excruciating right leg pain. Discography and disco-CT demonstrated leakage of the contrast medium into the intradural space. Based on these findings, a right L5 nerve root disturbance caused by ILDH was diagnosed. A right L5 hemi-laminectomy and a dorsal durotomy were performed. The herniated disc was carefully dissected and then completely removed. Three months after surgery, the patient had fully recovered. This report highlights the importance of making a definitive diagnosis of ILDH preoperatively for better surgical planning and improved clinical outcomes. Furthermore, discography and disco-CT are both useful preoperative diagnostic tools for the diagnosis of ILDH. PMID:27559461

  17. Utility of Discography as a Preoperative Diagnostic Tool for Intradural Lumbar Disc Herniation.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Tomiya; Toyoda, Hiromitsu; Terai, Hidetomi; Dohzono, Sho; Hori, Yusuke; Nakamura, Hiroaki

    2016-08-01

    Preoperative definitive diagnosis of intradural lumbar disc herniation (ILDH) is difficult despite the availability of various neuroradiological investigative tools. We present a case of ILDH diagnosed preoperatively by discography and computed tomography-discography (disco-CT).The patient was a 63-year-old man with acute excruciating right leg pain. Discography and disco-CT demonstrated leakage of the contrast medium into the intradural space. Based on these findings, a right L5 nerve root disturbance caused by ILDH was diagnosed. A right L5 hemi-laminectomy and a dorsal durotomy were performed. The herniated disc was carefully dissected and then completely removed. Three months after surgery, the patient had fully recovered. This report highlights the importance of making a definitive diagnosis of ILDH preoperatively for better surgical planning and improved clinical outcomes. Furthermore, discography and disco-CT are both useful preoperative diagnostic tools for the diagnosis of ILDH. PMID:27559461

  18. Monitoring of lobectomy in cystic fibrosis with electrical impedance tomography - a new diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    Lehmann, Sylvia; Tenbrock, Klaus; Schrading, Simone; Pikkemaat, Robert; Antink, Christoph Hoog; Santos, Susana; Spillner, Jan Wilhelm; Wagner, Norbert; Leonhardt, Steffen

    2014-12-01

    Electrical impedance tomography (EIT) is a radiation-free technique generating cross-sectional images of the lung. EIT visualizes global and regional ventilation by illustrating the distribution of electrical bioimpedance. With an electrode belt around the patient's thorax, rotating injection-couples of a harmless alternating current allow voltage measurement of the remaining electrodes. This enables the reconstruction of a tomogram with highly dynamic changes within ventilation. We report on a female six-year-old patient with cystic fibrosis and complete destruction of the upper and middle lobe of the right lung. Lobectomy, a rare therapeutic option in patients with cystic fibrosis that needs to be considered in cases of severe localized destruction, was performed. We show a pre- and postoperative documentation of static (radiology) and dynamic investigation tools (spirometry) in correlation with EIT as a new non-invasive and radiation-free diagnostic tool for this patient group. PMID:25153206

  19. Performance evaluation of computer aided diagnostic tool (CAD) for detection of ultrasonic based liver disease.

    PubMed

    Sriraam, N; Roopa, J; Saranya, M; Dhanalakshmi, M

    2009-08-01

    Recent advances in digital imaging technology have greatly enhanced the interpretation of critical/pathology conditions from the 2-dimensional medical images. This has become realistic due to the existence of the computer aided diagnostic tool. A computer aided diagnostic (CAD) tool generally possesses components like preprocessing, identification/selection of region of interest, extraction of typical features and finally an efficient classification system. This paper enumerates on development of CAD tool for classification of chronic liver disease through the 2-D image acquired from ultrasonic device. Characterization of tissue through qualitative treatment leads to the detection of abnormality which is not viable through qualitative visual inspection by the radiologist. Common liver diseases are the indicators of changes in tissue elasticity. One can show the detection of normal, fatty or malignant condition based on the application of CAD tool thereby, further investigation required by radiologist can be avoided. The proposed work involves an optimal block analysis (64 x 64) of the liver image of actual size 256 x 256 by incorporating Gabor wavelet transform which does the texture classification through automated mode. Statistical features such as gray level mean as well as variance values are estimated after this preprocessing mode. A non-linear back propagation neural network (BPNN) is applied for classifying the normal (vs) fatty and normal (vs) malignant liver which yields a classification accuracy of 96.8%. Further multi classification is also performed and a classification accuracy of 94% is obtained. It can be concluded that the proposed CAD can be used as an expert system to aid the automated diagnosis of liver diseases. PMID:19697693

  20. 'What About Swallowing?' Diagnostic Performance of Daily Clinical Practice Compared with the Eating Assessment Tool-10.

    PubMed

    Heijnen, Bas Joris; Speyer, Renée; Bülow, Margareta; Kuijpers, Laura Mf

    2016-04-01

    In daily clinical practice, patients are frequently asked about their swallowing as part of the patient-clinician interview. This study compares the diagnostic performance of a single open question 'What about swallowing?' (usual care) with the Eating Assessment Tool (EAT-10) as reference test in screening for oropharyngeal dysphagia (OD). 303 outpatients at risk of OD were recruited at three university hospitals: 162 men and 141 women with a mean age of 70 years. All data were retrieved by phone. To identify patients at risk of dysphagia, two different cut-off scores for the EAT-10 total score were retrieved from the literature. The diagnostic performance of the single question was determined by comparing dichotomized answers to the single question (no problems versus difficulties in swallowing) with the EAT-10 as reference test. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values ranged between 0.75-0.76, 0.75-0.84, 0.93-0.97 and 0.38-0.43, respectively. Mostly, the results of this exploratory study indicate a sufficient diagnostic performance of the single question in identifying patients who are at risk of dysphagia when using the EAT-10 questionnaire as a reference test. Further research, is, however, necessary to provide additional psychometric data on Functional Health Status (FHS) questionnaires including the single question using either FEES or VFS as gold standard or reference test. PMID:26753926

  1. RapMap: a rapid, sensitive and accurate tool for mapping RNA-seq reads to transcriptomes

    PubMed Central

    Srivastava, Avi; Sarkar, Hirak; Gupta, Nitish; Patro, Rob

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: The alignment of sequencing reads to a transcriptome is a common and important step in many RNA-seq analysis tasks. When aligning RNA-seq reads directly to a transcriptome (as is common in the de novo setting or when a trusted reference annotation is available), care must be taken to report the potentially large number of multi-mapping locations per read. This can pose a substantial computational burden for existing aligners, and can considerably slow downstream analysis. Results: We introduce a novel concept, quasi-mapping, and an efficient algorithm implementing this approach for mapping sequencing reads to a transcriptome. By attempting only to report the potential loci of origin of a sequencing read, and not the base-to-base alignment by which it derives from the reference, RapMap—our tool implementing quasi-mapping—is capable of mapping sequencing reads to a target transcriptome substantially faster than existing alignment tools. The algorithm we use to implement quasi-mapping uses several efficient data structures and takes advantage of the special structure of shared sequence prevalent in transcriptomes to rapidly provide highly-accurate mapping information. We demonstrate how quasi-mapping can be successfully applied to the problems of transcript-level quantification from RNA-seq reads and the clustering of contigs from de novo assembled transcriptomes into biologically meaningful groups. Availability and implementation: RapMap is implemented in C ++11 and is available as open-source software, under GPL v3, at https://github.com/COMBINE-lab/RapMap. Contact: rob.patro@cs.stonybrook.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:27307617

  2. Laser induced fluorescence as a diagnostic tool integrated into a scanning fiber endoscope for mouse imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Christopher M.; Maggio-Price, Lillian; Seibel, Eric J.

    2007-02-01

    Scanning fiber endoscope (SFE) technology has shown promise as a minimally invasive optical imaging tool. To date, it is capable of capturing full-color 500-line images, at 15 Hz frame rate in vivo, as a 1.6 mm diameter endoscope. The SFE uses a singlemode optical fiber actuated at mechanical resonance to scan a light spot over tissue while backscattered or fluorescent light at each pixel is detected in time series using several multimode optical fibers. We are extending the capability of the SFE from a RGB reflectance imaging device to a diagnostic tool by imaging laser induced fluorescence (LIF) in tissue, allowing for correlation of endogenous fluorescence to tissue state. Design of the SFE for diagnostic imaging is guided by a comparison of single point spectra acquired from an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) model to tissue histology evaluated by a pathologist. LIF spectra were acquired by illuminating tissue with a 405 nm light source and detecting intrinsic fluorescence with a multimode optical fiber. The IBD model used in this study was mdr1a-/- mice, where IBD was modulated by infection with Helicobacter bilis. IBD lesions in the mouse model ranged from mild to marked hyperplasia and dysplasia, from the distal colon to the cecum. A principle components analysis (PCA) was conducted on single point spectra of control and IBD tissue. PCA allowed for differentiation between healthy and dysplastic tissue, indicating that emission wavelengths from 620 - 650 nm were best able to differentiate diseased tissue and inflammation from normal healthy tissue.

  3. Urethral ultrasonography: A novel diagnostic tool for dysuria following bipolar transurethral plasma kinetic prostatectomy.

    PubMed

    Wang, Guang-Chun; Bian, Cui-Dong; Zhou, Ting-Ting; Liu, Min; Huang, Jian-Hua; Peng, Bo

    2016-04-29

    Urethral ultrasonography is non-invasive and able to indicate the urethral lumen clearly, as well as the surrounding tissues of the posterior urethra, without contrast agent or X-ray irradiation. In this paper, we evaluate the reliability of urethral ultrasonography in the diagnosis of dysuria following bipolar transurethral plasma kinetic prostatectomy (TUPKP). A total of 120 benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) patients with dysuria undergoing TUPKP were enrolled in this study, with a mean age of 72.8 years. All the patients received urethral ultrasonography, urethroscopy and bladder neck urethra stenosis oulectomy. Among the 120 cases, there were 22 cases of bladder neck closure, 20 bladder orifice stricture, 60 urethral stricture, 10 prostate remnants, 2 calculi in prostatic urethra, 4 dysfunction of bladder detrusor muscle and 2 flap of internal urethral orifice. χ2-test was used for the comparison of ultrasonography and urethral cystoscopy in the diagnosis of dysuria following TRPKP, and no significant difference was found between two diagnostic tools (χ 2 = 0.94, P > 0.05). Urethral ultrasonography is a reliable and minimally invasive diagnostic tool for dysuria following TUPKP and is conducive to early treatment of dysuria following prostatectomy. PMID:27163308

  4. In search of a potential diagnostic tool for molecular characterization of lymphatic filariasis.

    PubMed

    Saeed, Mohd; Adnan, Mohd; Khan, Saif; Al-Shammari, Eyad; Mustafa, Huma

    2016-01-01

    Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is a chronic disease and is caused by the parasites Wuchereria bancrofti (W. bancrofti), Brugia malayi (B. malayi) and Brugia timori (B. timori). In the present study, Setaria cervi (S. cervi), a bovine filarial parasite has been used. Previously, it has been reported that the S. cervi shares some common proteins and antigenic determinants with that of human filarial parasite. The larval stages of filarial species usually cannot be identified by classical morphology. Hence, molecular characterization allows the identification of the parasites throughout all their developmental stages. The genomic DNA of S. cervi adult were isolated and estimated spectrophotometrically for the quantitative presence of DNA content. Screening of DNA sequences from filarial DNA GenBank and Expressed Sequence Tags (EST's) were performed for homologous sequences and then multiple sequence alignment was executed. The conserved sequences from multiple sequence alignment were used for In Silico primer designing. The successfully designed primers were used further in PCR amplifications. Therefore, in search of a promising diagnostic tool few genes were identified to be conserved in the human and bovine filariasis and these novel primers deigned may help to develop a promising diagnostic tool for identification of lymphatic filariasis. PMID:26751881

  5. COMPREHENSIVE DIAGNOSTIC AND IMPROVEMENT TOOLS FOR HVAC-SYSTEM INSTALLATIONS IN LIGHT COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS

    SciTech Connect

    Abram Conant; Mark Modera; Joe Pira; John Proctor; Mike Gebbie

    2004-10-31

    Proctor Engineering Group, Ltd. (PEG) and Carrier-Aeroseal LLP performed an investigation of opportunities for improving air conditioning and heating system performance in existing light commercial buildings. Comprehensive diagnostic and improvement tools were created to address equipment performance parameters (including airflow, refrigerant charge, and economizer operation), duct-system performance (including duct leakage, zonal flows and thermal-energy delivery), and combustion appliance safety within these buildings. This investigation, sponsored by the National Energy Technology Laboratory, a division of the U.S. Department of Energy, involved collaboration between PEG and Aeroseal in order to refine three technologies previously developed for the residential market: (1) an aerosol-based duct sealing technology that allows the ducts to be sealed remotely (i.e., without removing the ceiling tiles), (2) a computer-driven diagnostic and improvement-tracking tool for residential duct installations, and (3) an integrated diagnosis verification and customer satisfaction system utilizing a combined computer/human expert system for HVAC performance. Prior to this work the aerosol-sealing technology was virtually untested in the light commercial sector--mostly because the savings potential and practicality of this or any other type of duct sealing had not been documented. Based upon the field experiences of PEG and Aeroseal, the overall product was tailored to suit the skill sets of typical HVAC-contractor personnel.

  6. Active Surveillance of Prostate Cancer: Use, Outcomes, Imaging, and Diagnostic Tools

    PubMed Central

    Tosoian, Jeffrey J; Loeb, Stacy; Epstein, Jonathan I; Turkbey, Baris; Choyke, Peter; Schaeffer, Edward M

    2016-01-01

    Active surveillance (AS) has emerged as a standard management option for men with very low-risk and low-risk prostate cancer, and contemporary data indicate that use of AS is increasing in the United States and abroad. In the favorable-risk population, reports from multiple prospective cohorts indicate a less than 1% likelihood of metastatic disease and prostate cancer-specific mortality over intermediate-term follow-up (median 5 to 6 years). Higher-risk men participating in AS appear to be at increased risk of adverse outcomes, but these populations have not been adequately studied to this point. Although monitoring on AS largely relies on serial prostate biopsy, a procedure associated with significant morbidity, there is a need for improved diagnostic tools for patient selection and monitoring. Revisions from the 2014 International Society of Urologic Pathology consensus conference have yielded a more intuitive reporting system and detailed reporting of low-intermediate grade tumors, which should facilitate the practice of AS. Meanwhile, emerging modalities such as multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging and tissue-based molecular testing have shown prognostic value in some populations. At this time, however, these instruments have not been sufficiently studied to consider their routine, standardized use in the AS setting. Future studies should seek to identify those platforms most informative in the AS population and propose a strategy by which promising diagnostic tools can be safely and efficiently incorporated into clinical practice. PMID:27249729

  7. Establishing Magnetic Resonance Imaging as an Accurate and Reliable Tool to Diagnose and Monitor Esophageal Cancer in a Rat Model

    PubMed Central

    Kosovec, Juliann E.; Zaidi, Ali H.; Komatsu, Yoshihiro; Kasi, Pashtoon M.; Cothron, Kyle; Thompson, Diane V.; Lynch, Edward; Jobe, Blair A.

    2014-01-01

    Objective To assess the reliability of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for detection of esophageal cancer in the Levrat model of end-to-side esophagojejunostomy. Background The Levrat model has proven utility in terms of its ability to replicate Barrett’s carcinogenesis by inducing gastroduodenoesophageal reflux (GDER). Due to lack of data on the utility of non-invasive methods for detection of esophageal cancer, treatment efficacy studies have been limited, as adenocarcinoma histology has only been validated post-mortem. It would therefore be of great value if the validity and reliability of MRI could be established in this setting. Methods Chronic GDER reflux was induced in 19 male Sprague-Dawley rats using the modified Levrat model. At 40 weeks post-surgery, all animals underwent endoscopy, MRI scanning, and post-mortem histological analysis of the esophagus and anastomosis. With post-mortem histology serving as the gold standard, assessment of presence of esophageal cancer was made by five esophageal specialists and five radiologists on endoscopy and MRI, respectively. Results The accuracy of MRI and endoscopic analysis to correctly identify cancer vs. no cancer was 85.3% and 50.5%, respectively. ROC curves demonstrated that MRI rating had an AUC of 0.966 (p<0.001) and endoscopy rating had an AUC of 0.534 (p = 0.804). The sensitivity and specificity of MRI for identifying cancer vs. no-cancer was 89.1% and 80% respectively, as compared to 45.5% and 57.5% for endoscopy. False positive rates of MRI and endoscopy were 20% and 42.5%, respectively. Conclusions MRI is a more reliable diagnostic method than endoscopy in the Levrat model. The non-invasiveness of the tool and its potential to volumetrically quantify the size and number of tumors likely makes it even more useful in evaluating novel agents and their efficacy in treatment studies of esophageal cancer. PMID:24705451

  8. A new automatic blood pressure kit auscultates for accurate reading with a smartphone: A diagnostic accuracy study.

    PubMed

    Wu, Hongjun; Wang, Bingjian; Zhu, Xinpu; Chu, Guang; Zhang, Zhi

    2016-08-01

    The widely used oscillometric automated blood pressure (BP) monitor was continuously questioned on its accuracy. A novel BP kit named Accutension which adopted Korotkoff auscultation method was then devised. Accutension worked with a miniature microphone, a pressure sensor, and a smartphone. The BP values were automatically displayed on the smartphone screen through the installed App. Data recorded in the phone could be played back and reconfirmed after measurement. They could also be uploaded and saved to the iCloud. The accuracy and consistency of this novel electronic auscultatory sphygmomanometer was preliminarily verified here. Thirty-two subjects were included and 82 qualified readings were obtained. The mean differences ± SD for systolic and diastolic BP readings between Accutension and mercury sphygmomanometer were 0.87 ± 2.86 and -0.94 ± 2.93 mm Hg. Agreements between Accutension and mercury sphygmomanometer were highly significant for systolic (ICC = 0.993, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.989-0.995) and diastolic (ICC = 0.987, 95% CI: 0.979-0.991). In conclusion, Accutension worked accurately based on our pilot study data. The difference was acceptable. ICC and Bland-Altman plot charts showed good agreements with manual measurements. Systolic readings of Accutension were slightly higher than those of manual measurement, while diastolic readings were slightly lower. One possible reason was that Accutension captured the first and the last korotkoff sound more sensitively than human ear during manual measurement and avoided sound missing, so that it might be more accurate than traditional mercury sphygmomanometer. By documenting and analyzing of variant tendency of BP values, Accutension helps management of hypertension and therefore contributes to the mobile heath service. PMID:27512876

  9. Design of a Web-tool for diagnostic clinical trials handling medical imaging research.

    PubMed

    Baltasar Sánchez, Alicia; González-Sistal, Angel

    2011-04-01

    New clinical studies in medicine are based on patients and controls using different imaging diagnostic modalities. Medical information systems are not designed for clinical trials employing clinical imaging. Although commercial software and communication systems focus on storage of image data, they are not suitable for storage and mining of new types of quantitative data. We sought to design a Web-tool to support diagnostic clinical trials involving different experts and hospitals or research centres. The image analysis of this project is based on skeletal X-ray imaging. It involves a computerised image method using quantitative analysis of regions of interest in healthy bone and skeletal metastases. The database is implemented with ASP.NET 3.5 and C# technologies for our Web-based application. For data storage, we chose MySQL v.5.0, one of the most popular open source databases. User logins were necessary, and access to patient data was logged for auditing. For security, all data transmissions were carried over encrypted connections. This Web-tool is available to users scattered at different locations; it allows an efficient organisation and storage of data (case report form) and images and allows each user to know precisely what his task is. The advantages of our Web-tool are as follows: (1) sustainability is guaranteed; (2) network locations for collection of data are secured; (3) all clinical information is stored together with the original images and the results derived from processed images and statistical analysis that enable us to perform retrospective studies; (4) changes are easily incorporated because of the modular architecture; and (5) assessment of trial data collected at different sites is centralised to reduce statistical variance. PMID:20517632

  10. Newcastle disease: progress and gaps in the development of vaccines and diagnostic tools.

    PubMed

    Afonso, C L; Miller, P J

    2013-01-01

    Newcastle disease (ND) is a contagious disease of birds that can have severe economic consequences for poultry producers, including a serious impact on the international trade of poultry and eggs. Newcastle disease virus (NDV) isolates are also called avian paramyxovirus serotype-1 isolates, but only infection with virulent NDV (vNDV) causes the disease. Virulent Newcastle disease virus (vNDV) isolates are distributed worldwide and have a high capacity to mutate, allowing the development of multiple vNDV genotypes evolving simultaneously at different locations. Large gaps in existing knowledge in the areas of epidemiology and evolution limit the possibilities to control the disease. Recurrent infection of poultry and wild birds allows the maintenance of a reservoir for the viruses; however, the role of wild birds and poultry in vNDV evolution is largely unknown. In the area of diagnostics, the performance of fast and accurate diagnostics methods is often affected by the evolution of viral genomes. Therefore, there is a need for the validation of multiple recently developed experimental tests and a need to develop additional fast and inexpensive diagnostic tests to be used in the field. In the area of vaccination, the development of inexpensive thermostable NDV vaccines and the development of vaccines capable of preventing viral replication are the highest priorities for endemic countries. In countries considered free of vNDV the development of low- cost vaccines that produce minimal vaccine reactions to prevent decreased productivity are higher priorities. Worldwide, better strategies that replace the culling of infected birds are needed to control outbreaks. PMID:23689887

  11. Space Laboratory on a Table Top: A Next Generative ECLSS design and diagnostic tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ramachandran, N.

    2005-01-01

    This paper describes the development plan for a comprehensive research and diagnostic tool for aspects of advanced life support systems in space-based laboratories. Specifically it aims to build a high fidelity tabletop model that can be used for the purpose of risk mitigation, failure mode analysis, contamination tracking, and testing reliability. We envision a comprehensive approach involving experimental work coupled with numerical simulation to develop this diagnostic tool. It envisions a 10% scale transparent model of a space platform such as the International Space Station that operates with water or a specific matched index of refraction liquid as the working fluid. This allows the scaling of a 10 ft x 10 ft x 10 ft room with air flow to 1 ft x 1 ft x 1 ft tabletop model with water/liquid flow. Dynamic similitude for this length scale dictates model velocities to be 67% of full-scale and thereby the time scale of the model to represent 15% of the full- scale system; meaning identical processes in the model are completed in 15% of the full- scale-time. The use of an index matching fluid (fluid that matches the refractive index of cast acrylic, the model material) allows making the entire model (with complex internal geometry) transparent and hence conducive to non-intrusive optical diagnostics. So using such a system one can test environment control parameters such as core flows (axial flows), cross flows (from registers and diffusers), potential problem areas such as flow short circuits, inadequate oxygen content, build up of other gases beyond desirable levels, test mixing processes within the system at local nodes or compartments and assess the overall system performance. The system allows quantitative measurements of contaminants introduced in the system and allows testing and optimizing the tracking process and removal of contaminants. The envisaged system will be modular and hence flexible for quick configuration change and subsequent testing. The data

  12. The Role of Epigenomics in the Study of Cancer Biomarkers and in the Development of Diagnostic Tools.

    PubMed

    Verma, Mukesh

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetics plays a key role in cancer development. Genetics alone cannot explain sporadic cancer and cancer development in individuals with no family history or a weak family history of cancer. Epigenetics provides a mechanism to explain the development of cancer in such situations. Alterations in epigenetic profiling may provide important insights into the etiology and natural history of cancer. Because several epigenetic changes occur before histopathological changes, they can serve as biomarkers for cancer diagnosis and risk assessment. Many cancers may remain asymptomatic until relatively late stages; in managing the disease, efforts should be focused on early detection, accurate prediction of disease progression, and frequent monitoring. This chapter describes epigenetic biomarkers as they are expressed during cancer development and their potential use in cancer diagnosis and prognosis. Based on epigenomic information, biomarkers have been identified that may serve as diagnostic tools; some such biomarkers also may be useful in identifying individuals who will respond to therapy and survive longer. The importance of analytical and clinical validation of biomarkers is discussed, along with challenges and opportunities in this field. PMID:26530360

  13. Manganese-Enhanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging as a Diagnostic and Dispositional Tool after Mild-Moderate Blast Traumatic Brain Injury.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez, Olga; Schaefer, Michele L; Wester, Brock; Lee, Yi-Chien; Boggs, Nathan; Conner, Howard A; Merkle, Andrew C; Fricke, Stanley T; Albanese, Chris; Koliatsos, Vassilis E

    2016-04-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by explosive munitions, known as blast TBI, is the signature injury in recent military conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Diagnostic evaluation of TBI, including blast TBI, is based on clinical history, symptoms, and neuropsychological testing, all of which can result in misdiagnosis or underdiagnosis of this condition, particularly in the case of TBI of mild-to-moderate severity. Prognosis is currently determined by TBI severity, recurrence, and type of pathology, and also may be influenced by promptness of clinical intervention when more effective treatments become available. An important task is prevention of repetitive TBI, particularly when the patient is still symptomatic. For these reasons, the establishment of quantitative biological markers can serve to improve diagnosis and preventative or therapeutic management. In this study, we used a shock-tube model of blast TBI to determine whether manganese-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MEMRI) can serve as a tool to accurately and quantitatively diagnose mild-to-moderate blast TBI. Mice were subjected to a 30 psig blast and administered a single dose of MnCl2 intraperitoneally. Longitudinal T1-magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) performed at 6, 24, 48, and 72 h and at 14 and 28 days revealed a marked signal enhancement in the brain of mice exposed to blast, compared with sham controls, at nearly all time-points. Interestingly, when mice were protected with a polycarbonate body shield during blast exposure, the marked increase in contrast was prevented. We conclude that manganese uptake can serve as a quantitative biomarker for TBI and that MEMRI is a minimally-invasive quantitative approach that can aid in the accurate diagnosis and management of blast TBI. In addition, the prevention of the increased uptake of manganese by body protection strongly suggests that the exposure of an individual to blast risk could benefit from the design of improved body armor. PMID:26414591

  14. Virtual Guidance Ultrasound: A Tool to Obtain Diagnostic Ultrasound for Remote Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caine,Timothy L.; Martin David S.; Matz, Timothy; Lee, Stuart M. C.; Stenger, Michael B.; Platts, Steven H.

    2012-01-01

    Astronauts currently acquire ultrasound images on the International Space Station with the assistance of real-time remote guidance from an ultrasound expert in Mission Control. Remote guidance will not be feasible when significant communication delays exist during exploration missions beyond low-Earth orbit. For example, there may be as much as a 20- minute delay in communications between the Earth and Mars. Virtual-guidance, a pre-recorded audio-visual tutorial viewed in real-time, is a viable modality for minimally trained scanners to obtain diagnostically-adequate images of clinically relevant anatomical structures in an autonomous manner. METHODS: Inexperienced ultrasound operators were recruited to perform carotid artery (n = 10) and ophthalmic (n = 9) ultrasound examinations using virtual guidance as their only instructional tool. In the carotid group, each each untrained operator acquired two-dimensional, pulsed, and color Doppler of the carotid artery. In the ophthalmic group, operators acquired representative images of the anterior chamber of the eye, retina, optic nerve, and nerve sheath. Ultrasound image quality was evaluated by independent imaging experts. RESULTS: Eight of the 10 carotid studies were judged to be diagnostically adequate. With one exception the quality of all the ophthalmic images were adequate to excellent. CONCLUSION: Diagnostically-adequate carotid and ophthalmic ultrasound examinations can be obtained by untrained operators with instruction only from an audio/video tutorial viewed in real time while scanning. This form of quick-response-guidance, can be developed for other ultrasound examinations, represents an opportunity to acquire important medical and scientific information for NASA flight surgeons and researchers when trained medical personnel are not present. Further, virtual guidance will allow untrained personnel to autonomously obtain important medical information in remote locations on Earth where communication is

  15. Line and continuum spectroscopy as diagnostic tools for gamma ray bursts

    SciTech Connect

    Liang, E.P.

    1990-12-01

    We review the theoretical framework of both line and continuum spectra formation in gamma ray bursts. These include the cyclotron features at 10's of keV, redshifted annihilation features at {approximately}400 keV, as well as other potentially detectable nuclear transition lines, atomic x-ray lines, proton cyclotron lines and plasma oscillation lines. By combining the parameters derived from line and continuum modeling we can try to reconstruct the location, geometry and physical conditions of the burst emission region, thereby constraining and discriminating the astrophysical models. Hence spectroscopy with current and future generations of detectors should provide powerful diagnostic tools for gamma ray bursters. 48 refs., 10 figs., 4 tabs.

  16. Evaluation of FTIR spectroscopy as diagnostic tool for colorectal cancer using spectral analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Liu; Sun, Xuejun; Chao, Zhang; Zhang, Shiyun; Zheng, Jianbao; Gurung, Rajendra; Du, Junkai; Shi, Jingsen; Xu, Yizhuang; Zhang, Yuanfu; Wu, Jinguang

    2014-03-01

    The aim of this study is to confirm FTIR spectroscopy as a diagnostic tool for colorectal cancer. 180 freshly removed colorectal samples were collected from 90 patients for spectrum analysis. The ratios of spectral intensity and relative intensity (/I1460) were calculated. Principal component analysis (PCA) and Fisher's discriminant analysis (FDA) were applied to distinguish the malignant from normal. The FTIR parameters of colorectal cancer and normal tissues were distinguished due to the contents or configurations of nucleic acids, proteins, lipids and carbohydrates. Related to nitrogen containing, water, protein and nucleic acid were increased significantly in the malignant group. Six parameters were selected as independent factors to perform discriminant functions. The sensitivity for FTIR in diagnosing colorectal cancer was 96.6% by discriminant analysis. Our study demonstrates that FTIR can be a useful technique for detection of colorectal cancer and may be applied in clinical colorectal cancer diagnosis.

  17. Mobile Phones Democratize and Cultivate Next-Generation Imaging, Diagnostics and Measurement Tools

    PubMed Central

    Ozcan, Aydogan

    2014-01-01

    In this article, I discuss some of the emerging applications and the future opportunities and challenges created by the use of mobile phones and their embedded components for the development of next-generation imaging, sensing, diagnostics and measurement tools. The massive volume of mobile phone users, which has now reached ~7 billion, drives the rapid improvements of the hardware, software and high-end imaging and sensing technologies embedded in our phones, transforming the mobile phone into a cost-effective and yet extremely powerful platform to run e.g., biomedical tests and perform scientific measurements that would normally require advanced laboratory instruments. This rapidly evolving and continuing trend will help us transform how medicine, engineering and sciences are practiced and taught globally. PMID:24647550

  18. Role of Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology as a Diagnostic Tool in Orbital and Adnexal Lesions

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Lubna; Malukani, Kamal; Malaiya, Siddharth; Yeshwante, Prashant; Ishrat, Saba; Nandedkar, Shirish S.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: To evaluate the role of fine needle aspiration (FNAC) as a diagnostic tool in cases of orbital and ocular adnexal masses. Cytological findings were correlated with histopathological diagnosis wherever possible. Methods: FNAC was performed in 29 patients of different age groups presenting with orbital and ocular adnexal masses. Patients were evaluated clinically and investigated by non-invasive techniques before fine needle aspiration of the masses. Smears were analyzed by a cytologist in all cases. Further, results of cytology were compared with the histopathological diagnosis. Results: The age of patients ranged from 1 to 68 years (mean: 29.79±19.29). There were 14 males and 15 females with a male to female ratio of 0.93:1. Out of 29 cases, 26 aspirates were cellular. Cellularity was insufficient in three (10.34%) aspirates. Out of 26 cellular aspirates, 11 were non-neoplastic while 15 were neoplastic on cytology. Subsequent histopathologic examination was done in 21/26 cases. Concordance rate of FNAC in orbital and ocular adnexal mass lesions with respect to the precise histologic diagnosis was 90%. Conclusion: When properly used in well-indicated patients (in cases where a diagnosis cannot be made by clinical and imaging findings alone), FNAC of orbital and periorbital lesions is an invaluable and suitable adjunct diagnostic technique that necessitates close cooperation between the ophthalmologist and cytologist. However, nondiagnostic aspirates may sometimes be obtained, and an inconclusive FNAC should not always be ignored. PMID:27621787

  19. Microarrays as a diagnostic tool in prenatal screening strategies: ethical reflection.

    PubMed

    de Jong, Antina; Dondorp, Wybo J; Macville, Merryn V E; de Die-Smulders, Christine E M; van Lith, Jan M M; de Wert, Guido M W R

    2014-02-01

    Genomic microarray analysis is increasingly being applied as a prenatal diagnostic tool. Microarrays enable searching the genome at a higher resolution and with higher sensitivity than conventional karyotyping for identifying clinically significant chromosomal abnormalities. As yet, no clear guidelines exist on whether microarrays should be applied prenatally for all indications or only in selected cases such as ultrasound abnormalities, whether a targeted or genome-wide array should be used, and what these should include exactly. In this paper, we present some ethical considerations on the prenatal use of microarrays. There is a strong consensus, at least in Western countries, that the aim of prenatal screening for foetal abnormalities should be understood as facilitating autonomous reproductive choice for prospective parents. The tests offered should be valid and useful to reach that purpose. Against this background, we address several ethical issues raised by the prenatal application of microarrays. First, we argue that the general distinction between a targeted and a genome-wide microarray needs to be scrutinised. Then we examine whether microarrays are 'suitable tests' to serve either a screening or a diagnostic purpose. Given the wide range of findings possibly generated by microarrays, the question arises whether microarrays actually promote or interfere with autonomous reproductive decision-making. Moreover, if variants of unknown clinical significance are identified, this adds to the burden and complexity of reproductive decision-making. We suggest a qualified use of microarrays in the prenatal context. PMID:24077959

  20. Supramaximal Stimulus Intensity as a Diagnostic Tool in Chronic Demyelinating Neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Parker, Vivien; Warman Chardon, Jodi; Mills, Julie; Goldsmith, Claire; Bourque, Pierre R

    2016-01-01

    Objective. The ability to correctly identify chronic demyelinating neuropathy can have important therapeutic and prognostic significance. The stimulus intensity value required to obtain a supramaximal compound muscle action potential amplitude is a commonly acquired data point that has not been formally assessed as a diagnostic tool in routine nerve conduction studies to identify chronic neuropathies. We postulated that this value was significantly elevated in chronic demyelinating neuropathy. Methods. We retrospectively reviewed electrophysiology laboratory records to compare the stimulus intensity values recorded during median and ulnar motor nerve conduction studies. The groups studied included normal controls (n = 42) and the following diagnostic categories: chronic inflammatory demyelinating neuropathy (CIDP) (n = 20), acquired inflammatory demyelinating neuropathy (AIDP) (n = 13), Charcot Marie Tooth (CMT) type 1 or 4C (n = 15), carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) (n = 11), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) (n = 18). Results. Supramaximal intensities were significantly higher in patients with CMT (median nerve: 43.4 mA) and CIDP (median nerve: 38.9 mA), whereas values similar to normal controls (median nerve: 25.3 mA) were obtained in ALS, CTS, and AIDP. Conclusions. Supramaximal stimulus intensity may be used as an additional criterion to identify the pathophysiology of neuropathy. We postulate that endoneurial hypertrophic changes may increase electrical impedance and thus the threshold of excitation at nodes of Ranvier. PMID:27413732

  1. Supramaximal Stimulus Intensity as a Diagnostic Tool in Chronic Demyelinating Neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Vivien; Warman Chardon, Jodi; Mills, Julie; Goldsmith, Claire; Bourque, Pierre R.

    2016-01-01

    Objective. The ability to correctly identify chronic demyelinating neuropathy can have important therapeutic and prognostic significance. The stimulus intensity value required to obtain a supramaximal compound muscle action potential amplitude is a commonly acquired data point that has not been formally assessed as a diagnostic tool in routine nerve conduction studies to identify chronic neuropathies. We postulated that this value was significantly elevated in chronic demyelinating neuropathy. Methods. We retrospectively reviewed electrophysiology laboratory records to compare the stimulus intensity values recorded during median and ulnar motor nerve conduction studies. The groups studied included normal controls (n = 42) and the following diagnostic categories: chronic inflammatory demyelinating neuropathy (CIDP) (n = 20), acquired inflammatory demyelinating neuropathy (AIDP) (n = 13), Charcot Marie Tooth (CMT) type 1 or 4C (n = 15), carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) (n = 11), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) (n = 18). Results. Supramaximal intensities were significantly higher in patients with CMT (median nerve: 43.4 mA) and CIDP (median nerve: 38.9 mA), whereas values similar to normal controls (median nerve: 25.3 mA) were obtained in ALS, CTS, and AIDP. Conclusions. Supramaximal stimulus intensity may be used as an additional criterion to identify the pathophysiology of neuropathy. We postulate that endoneurial hypertrophic changes may increase electrical impedance and thus the threshold of excitation at nodes of Ranvier. PMID:27413732

  2. Near Infrared Imaging as a Diagnostic Tool for Detecting Enamel Demineralization: An in vivo Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucas, Seth Adam

    Background and Objectives: For decades there has been an effort to develop alternative optical methods of imaging dental decay utilizing non-ionizing radiation methods. The purpose of this in-vivo study was to demonstrate whether NIR can be used as a diagnostic tool to evaluate dental caries and to compare the sensitivity and specificity of this method with that of conventional methods, including bitewing x-rays and visual inspection. Materials and Methods: 31 test subjects (n=31) from the UCSF orthodontic clinic undergoing orthodontic treatment with planned premolar extractions were recruited. Calibrated examiners performed caries detection examinations using conventional methods: bitewing radiographs and visual inspection. These findings were compared with the results from NIR examinations: transillumination and reflectance. To confirm the results found in the two different detection methods, a gold standard was used. After teeth were extracted, polarized light microscopy and transverse microradiography were performed. Results: A total of 87 premolars were used in the study. NIR identified the occlusal lesions with a sensitivity of 71% and a specificity of 77%, whereas, the visual examination had a sensitivity of only 40% and a specifity of 39%. For interproximal lesions halfway to DEJ, specificity remained constant, but sensitivity improved to 100% for NIR and 75% for x-rays. Conclusions: The results of this preliminary study demonstrate that NIR is just as effective at detecting enamel interproximal lesions as standard dental x-rays. NIR was more effective at detecting occlusal lesions than visual examination alone. NIR shows promise as an alternative diagnostic tool to the conventional methods of x-rays and visual examination and provides a non-ionizing radiation technique.

  3. Web-based tools for quality assurance and radiation protection in diagnostic radiology.

    PubMed

    Moores, B M; Charnock, P; Ward, M

    2010-01-01

    Practical and philosophical aspects of radiation protection in diagnostic radiology have changed very little over the past 50 y even though patient doses have continued to rise significantly in this period. This rise has been driven by technological developments, such as multi-slice computed tomography, that have been able to improve diagnostic accuracy but not necessarily provide the same level of risk-benefit to all patients or groups of patients given the dose levels involved. Can practical radiation protection strategies hope to keep abreast of these ongoing developments? A project was started in 1992 in Liverpool that aimed to develop IT driven quality assurance (QA)/radiation protection software tools based upon a modular quality assurance dose data system. One of the modules involved the assessment of the patient entrance surface air kerma (ESAK) for an X-ray examination that was based upon the use of calibrated X-ray tube exposure factors to calculate ESAK as well as collecting appropriate patient details (age, sex, weight, thickness etc). The package also contained modules for logging all necessary equipment performance QA data. This paper will outline the experience gained with this system through its transition from a local application on a stand alone PC within the department to the current web-based approach. Advantages of a web-based approach to delivering such an application as well as centrally storing data originating on many hospital sites will be discussed together with the scientific support processes that can be developed with such a system. This will include local, national and international considerations. The advantages of importing radiographic examination details directly from other electronic storage systems such as a hospital's radiology information system will be presented together with practical outcomes already achieved. This will include the application of statistical techniques to the very large data sets generated. The development

  4. The Development of an Open-Ended Drawing Tool: An Alternative Diagnostic Tool for Assessing Students' Understanding of the Particulate Nature of Matter

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nyachwaya, James M.; Mohamed, Abdi-Rizak; Roehrig, Gillian H.; Wood, Nathan B.; Kern, Anne L.; Schneider, Jamie L.

    2011-01-01

    Many studies in the chemical education literature report students' alternative conceptions in chemistry and the difficulty they present for future learning. In this paper, we review existing diagnostic tools used to uncover students' alternative conceptions in chemistry and suggest that there are two fundamental issues with such instruments,…

  5. A fully automatic tool to perform accurate flood mapping by merging remote sensing imagery and ancillary data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Addabbo, Annarita; Refice, Alberto; Lovergine, Francesco; Pasquariello, Guido

    2016-04-01

    Flooding is one of the most frequent and expansive natural hazard. High-resolution flood mapping is an essential step in the monitoring and prevention of inundation hazard, both to gain insight into the processes involved in the generation of flooding events, and from the practical point of view of the precise assessment of inundated areas. Remote sensing data are recognized to be useful in this respect, thanks to the high resolution and regular revisit schedules of state-of-the-art satellites, moreover offering a synoptic overview of the extent of flooding. In particular, Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data present several favorable characteristics for flood mapping, such as their relative insensitivity to the meteorological conditions during acquisitions, as well as the possibility of acquiring independently of solar illumination, thanks to the active nature of the radar sensors [1]. However, flood scenarios are typical examples of complex situations in which different factors have to be considered to provide accurate and robust interpretation of the situation on the ground: the presence of many land cover types, each one with a particular signature in presence of flood, requires modelling the behavior of different objects in the scene in order to associate them to flood or no flood conditions [2]. Generally, the fusion of multi-temporal, multi-sensor, multi-resolution and/or multi-platform Earth observation image data, together with other ancillary information, seems to have a key role in the pursuit of a consistent interpretation of complex scenes. In the case of flooding, distance from the river, terrain elevation, hydrologic information or some combination thereof can add useful information to remote sensing data. Suitable methods, able to manage and merge different kind of data, are so particularly needed. In this work, a fully automatic tool, based on Bayesian Networks (BNs) [3] and able to perform data fusion, is presented. It supplies flood maps

  6. ESMValTool (v1.0) - a community diagnostic and performance metrics tool for routine evaluation of Earth system models in CMIP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eyring, Veronika; Righi, Mattia; Lauer, Axel; Evaldsson, Martin; Wenzel, Sabrina; Jones, Colin; Anav, Alessandro; Andrews, Oliver; Cionni, Irene; Davin, Edouard L.; Deser, Clara; Ehbrecht, Carsten; Friedlingstein, Pierre; Gleckler, Peter; Gottschaldt, Klaus-Dirk; Hagemann, Stefan; Juckes, Martin; Kindermann, Stephan; Krasting, John; Kunert, Dominik; Levine, Richard; Loew, Alexander; Mäkelä, Jarmo; Martin, Gill; Mason, Erik; Phillips, Adam S.; Read, Simon; Rio, Catherine; Roehrig, Romain; Senftleben, Daniel; Sterl, Andreas; van Ulft, Lambertus H.; Walton, Jeremy; Wang, Shiyu; Williams, Keith D.

    2016-05-01

    A community diagnostics and performance metrics tool for the evaluation of Earth system models (ESMs) has been developed that allows for routine comparison of single or multiple models, either against predecessor versions or against observations. The priority of the effort so far has been to target specific scientific themes focusing on selected essential climate variables (ECVs), a range of known systematic biases common to ESMs, such as coupled tropical climate variability, monsoons, Southern Ocean processes, continental dry biases, and soil hydrology-climate interactions, as well as atmospheric CO2 budgets, tropospheric and stratospheric ozone, and tropospheric aerosols. The tool is being developed in such a way that additional analyses can easily be added. A set of standard namelists for each scientific topic reproduces specific sets of diagnostics or performance metrics that have demonstrated their importance in ESM evaluation in the peer-reviewed literature. The Earth System Model Evaluation Tool (ESMValTool) is a community effort open to both users and developers encouraging open exchange of diagnostic source code and evaluation results from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) ensemble. This will facilitate and improve ESM evaluation beyond the state-of-the-art and aims at supporting such activities within CMIP and at individual modelling centres. Ultimately, we envisage running the ESMValTool alongside the Earth System Grid Federation (ESGF) as part of a more routine evaluation of CMIP model simulations while utilizing observations available in standard formats (obs4MIPs) or provided by the user.

  7. ESMValTool (v1.0) - a community diagnostic and performance metrics tool for routine evaluation of Earth System Models in CMIP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eyring, V.; Righi, M.; Evaldsson, M.; Lauer, A.; Wenzel, S.; Jones, C.; Anav, A.; Andrews, O.; Cionni, I.; Davin, E. L.; Deser, C.; Ehbrecht, C.; Friedlingstein, P.; Gleckler, P.; Gottschaldt, K.-D.; Hagemann, S.; Juckes, M.; Kindermann, S.; Krasting, J.; Kunert, D.; Levine, R.; Loew, A.; Mäkelä, J.; Martin, G.; Mason, E.; Phillips, A.; Read, S.; Rio, C.; Roehrig, R.; Senftleben, D.; Sterl, A.; van Ulft, L. H.; Walton, J.; Wang, S.; Williams, K. D.

    2015-09-01

    A community diagnostics and performance metrics tool for the evaluation of Earth System Models (ESMs) has been developed that allows for routine comparison of single or multiple models, either against predecessor versions or against observations. The priority of the effort so far has been to target specific scientific themes focusing on selected Essential Climate Variables (ECVs), a range of known systematic biases common to ESMs, such as coupled tropical climate variability, monsoons, Southern Ocean processes, continental dry biases and soil hydrology-climate interactions, as well as atmospheric CO2 budgets, tropospheric and stratospheric ozone, and tropospheric aerosols. The tool is being developed in such a way that additional analyses can easily be added. A set of standard namelists for each scientific topic reproduces specific sets of diagnostics or performance metrics that have demonstrated their importance in ESM evaluation in the peer-reviewed literature. The Earth System Model Evaluation Tool (ESMValTool) is a community effort open to both users and developers encouraging open exchange of diagnostic source code and evaluation results from the CMIP ensemble. This will facilitate and improve ESM evaluation beyond the state-of-the-art and aims at supporting such activities within the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) and at individual modelling centres. Ultimately, we envisage running the ESMValTool alongside the Earth System Grid Federation (ESGF) as part of a more routine evaluation of CMIP model simulations while utilizing observations available in standard formats (obs4MIPs) or provided by the user.

  8. Bone biopsy as a diagnostic tool in the assessment of renal osteodystrophy.

    PubMed

    Spasovski, G B

    2004-11-01

    When renal disease develops, mineral and vitamin D homeostasis is disrupted, resulting in diverse modifications in bone cells, bone structure and the rate of bone turnover. In end stage renal failure (ESRF) when patients require chronic maintenance dialysis, nearly all of them have abnormal bone histology known as renal osteodystrophy (ROD). Moreover, survival rates of patients on dialysis have increased because of therapeutic improvement and the resultant increase in duration of dialysis has led to a further rise in renal osteodystrophy. Because metabolic bone disease can produce fractures, bone pain, and deformities late in the course of the disease, prevention and early treatment are essential. Serum PTH and various bone markers are commonly used to assess bone changes in ESRF patients, but the diagnosis of underlying bone disease is still rather uncertain. To date, bone biopsy is the most powerful and informative diagnostic tool to provide precise information on the type and severity of renal osteodystrophy, and on the presence and amount of aluminum and strontium deposited in the bone. Bone biopsy is not only useful in clinical settings but also in research to assess the effects of therapies on bone. Although considered an invasive procedure, bone biopsy has been proven to be safe and free from major complications, but the operator's experience and skill is important in further minimizing morbidity. Alternatives to bone biopsy continue to be sought, but the non-invasive bone markers have not been proven to be sufficient in diagnostic performance related to bone turnover, mineralization process and bone cell abnormality. Hence, transiliac bone biopsy remains the gold standard for the diagnosis of renal osteodystrophy. PMID:15636048

  9. Geochemical study of black crusts as a diagnostic tool in cultural heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    La Russa, Mauro F.; Belfiore, Cristina M.; Comite, Valeria; Barca, Donatella; Bonazza, Alessandra; Ruffolo, Silvestro A.; Crisci, Gino M.; Pezzino, Antonino

    2013-12-01

    This contribution focuses on spectrometric analyses carried out on crust samples covering the stone surface of the boundary walls of the Tower of London. The main goal of this research is to investigate the degradation processes related to the environmental impact on cultural heritage. Specifically, the chemical contamination of stone substrate in the Tower of London due to the crust formation was examined through laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS). This technique allowed us to achieve a complete characterization of the damage layers in terms of trace elements. In addition, optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy coupled with energy-dispersive X-ray spectrometry (SEM-EDS) and infrared spectroscopic techniques (FT-IR) were also used for an exhaustive characterization of the examined samples. Results obtained demonstrated that such a geochemical approach represents a powerful diagnostic tool in the study of black crusts, since it represents a reliable indicator of the environmental pollution. The higher concentrations of most heavy metals in black crusts with respect to the underlying stone suggest that crusts were greatly influenced by atmospheric inputs in their formation, mainly represented by mobile combustion sources. In addition, the possibility of analyzing in some samples the portion of altered substrate allowed us to hypothesize that some specific heavy metals tend to migrate from the crust to the unaltered substrate over time, becoming catalysts for the formation of new crust. Therefore, this research focuses on the role of diagnostics in order to plan suitable cleaning and consolidation intervention aimed at a better protection of the monument.

  10. Metabolic and Genetic Screening of Electromagnetic Hypersensitive Subjects as a Feasible Tool for Diagnostics and Intervention

    PubMed Central

    De Luca, Chiara; Chung Sheun Thai, Jeffrey; Raskovic, Desanka; Cesareo, Eleonora; Caccamo, Daniela; Trukhanov, Arseny

    2014-01-01

    Growing numbers of “electromagnetic hypersensitive” (EHS) people worldwide self-report severely disabling, multiorgan, non-specific symptoms when exposed to low-dose electromagnetic radiations, often associated with symptoms of multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) and/or other environmental “sensitivity-related illnesses” (SRI). This cluster of chronic inflammatory disorders still lacks validated pathogenetic mechanism, diagnostic biomarkers, and management guidelines. We hypothesized that SRI, not being merely psychogenic, may share organic determinants of impaired detoxification of common physic-chemical stressors. Based on our previous MCS studies, we tested a panel of 12 metabolic blood redox-related parameters and of selected drug-metabolizing-enzyme gene polymorphisms, on 153 EHS, 147 MCS, and 132 control Italians, confirming MCS altered (P < 0.05–0.0001) glutathione-(GSH), GSH-peroxidase/S-transferase, and catalase erythrocyte activities. We first described comparable—though milder—metabolic pro-oxidant/proinflammatory alterations in EHS with distinctively increased plasma coenzyme-Q10 oxidation ratio. Severe depletion of erythrocyte membrane polyunsaturated fatty acids with increased ω6/ω3 ratio was confirmed in MCS, but not in EHS. We also identified significantly (P = 0.003) altered distribution-versus-control of the CYP2C19∗1/∗2 SNP variants in EHS, and a 9.7-fold increased risk (OR: 95% C.I. = 1.3–74.5) of developing EHS for the haplotype (null)GSTT1 + (null)GSTM1 variants. Altogether, results on MCS and EHS strengthen our proposal to adopt this blood metabolic/genetic biomarkers' panel as suitable diagnostic tool for SRI. PMID:24812443

  11. The BOUT Project: Validation and Benchmark of BOUT Code and Experimental Diagnostic Tools for Fusion Boundary Turbulence

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, X Q

    2001-08-09

    A boundary plasma turbulence code BOUT is presented. The preliminary encouraging results have been obtained when comparing with probe measurements for a typical Ohmic discharge in CT-7 tokamak. The validation and benchmark of BOUT code and experimental diagnostic tools for fusion boundary plasma turbulence is proposed.

  12. Development and Assessment of a Diagnostic Tool to Identify Organic Chemistry Students' Alternative Conceptions Related to Acid Strength

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McClary, LaKeisha M.; Bretz, Stacey Lowery

    2012-01-01

    The central goal of this study was to create a new diagnostic tool to identify organic chemistry students' alternative conceptions related to acid strength. Twenty years of research on secondary and college students' conceptions about acids and bases has shown that these important concepts are difficult for students to apply to qualitative problem…

  13. A Quasi-Universal Nonword Repetition Task as a Diagnostic Tool for Bilingual Children Learning Dutch as a Second Language

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boerma, Tessel; Chiat, Shula; Leseman, Paul; Timmermeister, Mona; Wijnen, Frank; Blom, Elma

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This study evaluated a newly developed quasi-universal nonword repetition task (Q-U NWRT) as a diagnostic tool for bilingual children with language impairment (LI) who have Dutch as a 2nd language. The Q-U NWRT was designed to be minimally influenced by knowledge of 1 specific language in contrast to a language-specific NWRT with which it…

  14. The 22 GHz Water Maser Line: A New Diagnostic Tool for Extrasolar Planet Search

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cosmovici, Cristiano; Pogrebenko, Sergej; Montebugnoli, Stelio; Maccaferri, Giuseppe

    The impact of 21 nuclei of Comet Shoemaker-Levy with the atmosphere of Jupiter in July 1994, permitted the detection of the 22 GHz water MASER line for the first time in the Solar System. This emission line was originated by a water cloud released from cometary ices after the explosion of the nuclei in the upper atmosphere. Our measurements have shown that, under particular physical conditions, water MASER emission can be observed from planetary atmospheres. Thus water (and probably other molecules like SiO) MASER emission can be used as a powerful diagnostic tool for planetary search outside the Solar System, since comets are able to deliver huge amounts of water into planetary atmospheres, increasing the probability of life development. We therefore started a search program with the 32m dish of the Medicina Radiotelescope using a 132,000 multichannel spectrometer in order to cover Doppler shifts due to planetary rotation. In this paper we will illustrate the feasibility, the technique used, and the first selected targets for the search within 50 ly.

  15. Creating an automated chiller fault detection and diagnostics tool using a data fault library.

    PubMed

    Bailey, Margaret B; Kreider, Jan F

    2003-07-01

    Reliable, automated detection and diagnosis of abnormal behavior within vapor compression refrigeration cycle (VCRC) equipment is extremely desirable for equipment owners and operators. The specific type of VCRC equipment studied in this paper is a 70-ton helical rotary, air-cooled chiller. The fault detection and diagnostic (FDD) tool developed as part of this research analyzes chiller operating data and detects faults through recognizing trends or patterns existing within the data. The FDD method incorporates a neural network (NN) classifier to infer the current state given a vector of observables. Therefore the FDD method relies upon the availability of normal and fault empirical data for training purposes and therefore a fault library of empirical data is assembled. This paper presents procedures for conducting sophisticated fault experiments on chillers that simulate air-cooled condenser, refrigerant, and oil related faults. The experimental processes described here are not well documented in literature and therefore will provide the interested reader with a useful guide. In addition, the authors provide evidence, based on both thermodynamics and empirical data analysis, that chiller performance is significantly degraded during fault operation. The chiller's performance degradation is successfully detected and classified by the NN FDD classifier as discussed in the paper's final section. PMID:12858981

  16. Polymerase Chain Reaction as a Diagnostic Tool for Six Sexually Transmitted Infections - Preliminary Results

    PubMed Central

    GRAD, ALECSANDRA IULIA; VICA, MIHAELA LAURA; MATEI, HOREA VLADI; GRAD, DORU LUCIAN; COMAN, IOAN; TATARU, DUMITRU ALEXANDRU

    2015-01-01

    Background and aim Sexually transmitted infections are a very frequent and under-diagnosed cause of illness worldwide. A high number of detection methods and a large range of specimens in which sexually transmitted infections can be determined are available at the moment. Polymerase chain reaction performed on first void urine offers the advantage of being non-invasive, self-collectable and has high sensitivity and specificity. We looked to determine the frequency of Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, Trichomonas vaginalis, Mycoplasma hominis, Mycoplasma genitalium and Ureaplasma urealyticum in symptomatic and asymptomatic patients. Methods Six sexually transmitted infections were determined in the first void urine of 15 symptomatic and asymptomatic patients by polymerase chain reaction. We used “Epicenter MasterPure™ Complete DNA and RNA Purification Kit” for the DNA purification and “Seeplex® STD6 ACE Detection” for the DNA amplification. The results were examined in UV light. Results A number of 5 patients had positive results for Chlamydia trachomatis or Neisseria gonorrhoeae. Sexually transmitted infections are more frequent in men between 27 and 40 years old. Conclusions Polymerase chain reaction is a good diagnostic tool for sexually transmitted infections because it has a high sensitivity and specificity. Chlamydia trachomatis is the most frequent sexually transmitted infection, followed by Neisseria gonorrhoeae. PMID:26528045

  17. Effectiveness of feline body mass index (fBMI) as new diagnostic tool for obesity.

    PubMed

    Kawasumi, Koh; Iwazaki, Eiji; Okada, Yuki; Arai, Toshiro

    2016-02-01

    Feline body mass index (fBMI), BW/PCL, length from top of patella to end of calcaneus, was developed as a new diagnostic tool for obesity in cats. To evaluate the effectiveness of fBMI for obese cats in short-term, 6 cats were induced weight gain by over-feeding with high fat diet and then they were induced weight reduction by restrict-feeding with low fat diet to measure changes in fBMI and plasma metabolite concentrations and enzyme activities. BCS 3 is correlated with fBMI 24.6-32.0, BCS 4 is correlated with fBMI 33.1-37.1 and BCS 5 is correlated with fBMI 29.9-40.3, respectively. On the correlation coefficient analysis by Pearson's method (P < 0.05), positive correlations (r = 0.403) were seen between the fBMI and plasma triglyceride (TG) levels. From these findings, fBMI seems to be more sensitive and useful indicator for obesity diagnosis in cats. PMID:27348888

  18. MicroRNAs as a diagnostic tool for heart failure and atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Weckbach, Ludwig T; Grabmaier, Ulrich; Clauss, Sebastian; Wakili, Reza

    2016-04-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs, which are directly involved in the regulation of post-transcriptional gene expression. Their biological function represents a repression of protein expression of the targeted messenger-RNA(s). Expression of several miRNAs is somehow tissue-specific or cell-specific and their expression pattern can reflect an underlying pathophysiological condition. Beyond this biological function their role as potential biomarkers has been emerged in the past years. This was based on the fact that miRNAs can be detected in blood samples (serum or plasma) in a surprisingly stable form, by contrast to mRNAs. This fact made miRNAs interesting candidates for biomarkers providing information with respect to a potentially ongoing pathophysiological condition and could thereby have an impact on specific treatment strategies in patients. In this review we try to provide an overview of the potential role of miRNAs as a diagnostic tool in atrial fibrillation and heart failure patients taken different methodological aspects and distinct type of patients into account. PMID:26852213

  19. EEG Synchronization Evaluation: A New Diagnostic Tool for Predicting the Progression of Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Yi, Ran; Zhan, Xiao-Rong; Tang, Jing; Zhang, Li-Ming; Liu, Xiao-Min; Dong, Qi

    2015-04-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is known as a leading cause of dementia in elderly persons. It is a chronic neurodegenerative disorder characterized by progressive cognitive dysfunction. AD can disrupt functional connectivity in distributed cortical networks. The S-estimator, which is a measure of multivariate intraregional synchronization, was analyzed in this study. Twenty patients with AD and 20 age-matched controls were tested at baseline and after 1 year to evaluate the potential of synchronization to be a possible marker of AD progression. All the subjects had clinical evaluations and electroencephalography (EEG) at baseline and post 1 year. Hyposynchronization had an important effect in the medial temporal and frontal regions, while there were no significant effects for hypersynchronization. Hypersynchronized clusters changed more slowly with time (P = .067), whereas hyposynchronized clusters changed more quickly (P = .032). Hyposynchronized cluster-averaged S-estimator correlated negatively with progression of AD (r = -0.98769, P = .0103). In conclusion, the present study provides a whole-brain, AD-specific phenotype of temporal coordination in distributed cortical networks, which is an early diagnostic tool for progression of AD. PMID:24590871

  20. A novel diagnostic tool reveals mitochondrial pathology in human diseases and aging

    PubMed Central

    Scheibye-Knudsen, Morten; Scheibye-Alsing, Karsten; Canugovi, Chandrika; Croteau, Deborah L.; Bohr, Vilhelm A.

    2013-01-01

    The inherent complex and pleiotropic phenotype of mitochondrial diseases poses a significant diagnostic challenge for clinicians as well as an analytical barrier for scientists. To overcome these obstacles we compiled a novel database, www.mitodb.com, containing the clinical features of primary mitochondrial diseases. Based on this we developed a number of qualitative and quantitative measures, enabling us to determine whether a disorder can be characterized as mitochondrial. These included a clustering algorithm, a disease network, a mitochondrial barcode and two scoring algorithms. Using these tools we detected mitochondrial involvement in a number of diseases not previously recorded as mitochondrial. As a proof of principle Cockayne syndrome, ataxia with oculomotor apraxia 1 (AOA1), spinocerebellar ataxia with axonal neuropathy 1 (SCAN1) and ataxia-telangiectasia have recently been shown to have mitochondrial dysfunction and those diseases showed strong association with mitochondrial disorders. We next evaluated mitochondrial involvement in aging and detected two distinct categories of accelerated aging disorders, one of them being associated with mitochondrial dysfunction. Normal aging seemed to associate stronger with the mitochondrial diseases than the non-mitochondrial partially supporting a mitochondrial theory of aging. PMID:23524341

  1. Near-Infrared Spectroscopy as a Diagnostic Tool for Distinguishing between Normal and Malignant Colorectal Tissues

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Hui; Lin, Zan; Mo, Lin; Wu, Tong; Tan, Chao

    2015-01-01

    Cancer diagnosis is one of the most important tasks of biomedical research and has become the main objective of medical investigations. The present paper proposed an analytical strategy for distinguishing between normal and malignant colorectal tissues by combining the use of near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy with chemometrics. The successive projection algorithm-linear discriminant analysis (SPA-LDA) was used to seek a reduced subset of variables/wavenumbers and build a diagnostic model of LDA. For comparison, the partial least squares-discriminant analysis (PLS-DA) based on full-spectrum classification was also used as the reference. Principal component analysis (PCA) was used for a preliminary analysis. A total of 186 spectra from 20 patients with partial colorectal resection were collected and divided into three subsets for training, optimizing, and testing the model. The results showed that, compared to PLS-DA, SPA-LDA provided more parsimonious model using only three wavenumbers/variables (4065, 4173, and 5758 cm−1) to achieve the sensitivity of 84.6%, 92.3%, and 92.3% for the training, validation, and test sets, respectively, and the specificity of 100% for each subset. It indicated that the combination of NIR spectroscopy and SPA-LDA algorithm can serve as a potential tool for distinguishing between normal and malignant colorectal tissues. PMID:25654106

  2. Surface tension in human pathophysiology and its application as a medical diagnostic tool

    PubMed Central

    Fathi-Azarbayjani, Anahita; Jouyban, Abolghasem

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Pathological features of disease appear to be quite different. Despite this diversity, the common feature of various disorders underlies physicochemical and biochemical factors such as surface tension. Human biological fluids comprise various proteins and phospholipids which are capable of adsorption at fluid interfaces and play a vital role in the physiological function of human organs. Surface tension of body fluids correlates directly to the development of pathological states. Methods: In this review, the variety of human diseases mediated by the surface tension changes of biological phenomena and the failure of biological fluids to remain in their native state are discussed. Results: Dynamic surface tension measurements of human biological fluids depend on various parameters such as sex, age and changes during pregnancy or certain disease. It is expected that studies of surface tension behavior of human biological fluids will provide additional information and might become useful in medical practice. Theoretical background on surface tension measurement and surface tension values of reference fluids obtained from healthy and sick patients are depicted. Conclusion: It is well accepted that no single biomarker will be effective in clinical diagnosis. The surface tension measurement combined with routine lab tests may be a novel non-invasive method which can not only facilitate the discovery of diagnostic models for various diseases and its severity, but also be a useful tool for monitoring treatment efficacy. We therefore expect that studies of surface tension behavior of human biological fluids will provide additional useful information in medical practice. PMID:25901295

  3. Large biases in regression-based constituent flux estimates: causes and diagnostic tools

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hirsch, Robert M.

    2014-01-01

    It has been documented in the literature that, in some cases, widely used regression-based models can produce severely biased estimates of long-term mean river fluxes of various constituents. These models, estimated using sample values of concentration, discharge, and date, are used to compute estimated fluxes for a multiyear period at a daily time step. This study compares results of the LOADEST seven-parameter model, LOADEST five-parameter model, and the Weighted Regressions on Time, Discharge, and Season (WRTDS) model using subsampling of six very large datasets to better understand this bias problem. This analysis considers sample datasets for dissolved nitrate and total phosphorus. The results show that LOADEST-7 and LOADEST-5, although they often produce very nearly unbiased results, can produce highly biased results. This study identifies three conditions that can give rise to these severe biases: (1) lack of fit of the log of concentration vs. log discharge relationship, (2) substantial differences in the shape of this relationship across seasons, and (3) severely heteroscedastic residuals. The WRTDS model is more resistant to the bias problem than the LOADEST models but is not immune to them. Understanding the causes of the bias problem is crucial to selecting an appropriate method for flux computations. Diagnostic tools for identifying the potential for bias problems are introduced, and strategies for resolving bias problems are described.

  4. System diagnostic builder: a rule-generation tool for expert systems that do intelligent data evaluation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nieten, Joseph L.; Burke, Roger

    1993-03-01

    The system diagnostic builder (SDB) is an automated knowledge acquisition tool using state- of-the-art artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. The SDB uses an inductive machine learning technique to generate rules from data sets that are classified by a subject matter expert (SME). Thus, data is captured from the subject system, classified by an expert, and used to drive the rule generation process. These rule-bases are used to represent the observable behavior of the subject system, and to represent knowledge about this system. The rule-bases can be used in any knowledge based system which monitors or controls a physical system or simulation. The SDB has demonstrated the utility of using inductive machine learning technology to generate reliable knowledge bases. In fact, we have discovered that the knowledge captured by the SDB can be used in any number of applications. For example, the knowledge bases captured from the SMS can be used as black box simulations by intelligent computer aided training devices. We can also use the SDB to construct knowledge bases for the process control industry, such as chemical production, or oil and gas production. These knowledge bases can be used in automated advisory systems to ensure safety, productivity, and consistency.

  5. Development of a high-temperature diagnostics-while-drilling tool.

    SciTech Connect

    Chavira, David J.; Huey, David; Hetmaniak, Chris; Polsky, Yarom; King, Dennis K.; Jacobson, Ronald David; Blankenship, Douglas Alan; Knudsen, Steven Dell; Henfling, Joseph Anthony; Mansure, Arthur James

    2009-01-01

    The envisioned benefits of Diagnostics-While-Drilling (DWD) are based on the principle that high-speed, real-time information from the downhole environment will promote better control of the drilling process. Although in practice a DWD system could provide information related to any aspect of exploration and production of subsurface resources, the current DWD system provides data on drilling dynamics. This particular set of new tools provided by DWD will allow quicker detection of problems, reduce drilling flat-time and facilitate more efficient drilling (drilling optimization) with the overarching result of decreased drilling costs. In addition to providing the driller with an improved, real-time picture of the drilling conditions downhole, data generated from DWD systems provides researchers with valuable, high fidelity data sets necessary for developing and validating enhanced understanding of the drilling process. Toward this end, the availability of DWD creates a synergy with other Sandia Geothermal programs, such as the hard-rock bit program, where the introduction of alternative rock-reduction technologies are contingent on the reduction or elimination of damaging dynamic effects. More detailed descriptions of the rationale for the program and early development efforts are described in more detail by others [SAND2003-2069 and SAND2000-0239]. A first-generation low-temperature (LT) DWD system was fielded in a series of proof-of-concept tests (POC) to validate functionality. Using the LT system, DWD was subsequently used to support a single-laboratory/multiple-partner CRADA (Cooperative Research and Development Agreement) entitled Advanced Drag Bits for Hard-Rock Drilling. The drag-bit CRADA was established between Sandia and four bit companies, and involved testing of a PDC bit from each company [Wise, et al., 2003, 2004] in the same lithologic interval at the Gas Technology Institute (GTI) test facility near Catoosa, OK. In addition, the LT DWD system has

  6. A diagnostic tool for basic daily quality assurance of a Tomotherapy Hi*Art machine.

    PubMed

    Van de Vondel, Iwein; Tournel, Koen; Verellen, Dirk; Duchateau, Michael; Lelie, Steven; Storme, Guy

    2009-01-01

    To investigate and evaluate the use of an in-house developed diagnostic software tool using the imaging detector data for a quick daily quality assurance check of the output (dose) and lateral profile (cone) of a tomotherapy Hi*Art system. The Hi*Art treatment system is a radiation therapy machine for delivering intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) in a helical fashion with an integrated CT scanner used for improved patient positioning before treatment. Since the system was developed specifically for IMRT, flat fields can be obtained by modulating the beam and therefore the flattening filter could be omitted. Because of this, the field has a cone-like profile in both lateral and transversal directions. Patients are treated in a helical fashion with a tight pitch and a constant gantry rotation speed, while modulation is performed by a binary MLC. Consequently dose output per time-unit (dose rate) as well as the shape of the cone-profile are very important for correct patient treatment and should be closely monitored. However, using the company-provided initial tools and conventional dosimetry, this can be a time consuming daily procedure. The aim of this work is to develop a fast, automated method of quality assurance based on the detector signal. A software tool called "tomocheck" running on the operation station has been developed to evaluate the output (dose rate) and the lateral cone profile (energy) of the Hi*Art system, comparing actual output and cone profile with a reference (previously approved against ionization chamber measurements). This is done by using the data of the 640 on-board detector array that are directly retrieved and processed after a specific QA procedure. The detector file consists of the CT detector data and the three monitoring dose chamber readings over a time period of 200 sec. To evaluate the method, the system was benchmarked against ionization chamber measurements and classical IMRT QA methods. Action levels (final status

  7. Scanning multispectral IR reflectography SMIRR: an advanced tool for art diagnostics.

    PubMed

    Daffara, Claudia; Pampaloni, Enrico; Pezzati, Luca; Barucci, Marco; Fontana, Raffaella

    2010-06-15

    Spectral imaging technology, widely used in remote sensing applications, such as satellite or radar imaging, has recently gained importance in the field of artwork conservation. In particular, multispectral imaging in the near-infrared region (NIR) has proved useful in analyzing ancient paintings because of the transparency of most pigments and their varied reflectance changes over this spectral region. A variety of systems, with different detectors and filtering or dispersing technologies, have been implemented. Despite the recognized potential of multispectral NIR imaging, which provides information on both spectral and spatial domains (thus extending the capabilities of conventional imaging and spectroscopy), most of the systems currently used in art diagnostics have limitations. The technology is still in its early stages of development in this field. In this Account, we present the scanning multispectral IR reflectography (SMIRR) technique for artwork analysis, together with an integrated device for the acquisition of imaging data. The instrument prototype is a no-contact optical scanner with a single-point measurement of the reflectance, capable of simultaneously collecting a set of 14 spatially registered images at different wavelengths in the NIR range of 800-2300 nm. The data can be analyzed as a spectral cube, both as a stack of wavelength resolved images (multi-NIR reflectography) and as a series of point reflectance spectra, one for each sampled pixel on the surface (NIR spectrometry). We explore the potential of SMIRR in the analysis of ancient paintings and show its advantages over the wide-band conventional method. The multispectral option allows the choice of the most effective NIR bands and improves the ability to detect hidden features. The interband comparison aids in localizing areas of different pictorial materials with particular NIR reflectance. In addition to the analysis of single monochromatic images, enhancement procedures involving the

  8. Using Wellbore Deformation as a Diagnostic Tool during CO2 Sequestration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, S.; Murdoch, L. C.; Germanovich, L.; Moysey, S. M.; Skawski, G. M.; Ebenhack, J.; Smith, J.; Ozan, C.

    2012-12-01

    Well bores always deform in response to injection or recovery of fluid. In extreme cases the deformation is catastrophic and the well can be ruined, but in routine cases the small elastic deformation has the potential to be an important diagnostic tool that improves the efficiency and safety of CO2 sequestration. Including deformation measurements along with the pressure signal during short-term hydraulic well tests will improve estimates of formation properties and heterogeneities, and this will lead to forecasts of injectivity and pressure response to CO2 injection. The feasibility of using wellbore deformation as a diagnostic tool is being evaluated by addressing three primary questions: What is the magnitude and pattern of expected deformation? Can this signal be measured? Can these measurements be interpreted? The first question is being evaluated by developing a series of theoretical analyses that represent wells in various scenarios typical of CO2 sequestration. The conceptual model is that well casing is an elastic tube that is loaded during the well completion process. This external load compresses the casing with a compliance of 10 to 40 microns of radial displacement/MPa load. During injection, the casing moves both radially and axially. Internal fluid pressure causes the casing to bulge, and poroelastic effects in the injection formation unload the casing and cause it to move radially outward. Pressure on adjacent confining units, and interaction with the ground surface cause the casing to stretch longitudinally where it contacts the injection interval, and it can be compressed in the overlying confining units. Radial displacements are on the order of tenths of microns to several microns, and axial strains are 10 microstrain or more, according to simulations. Effects in confining units are particularly interesting because they show a time dependency that results from the vertical propagation of pressure from the injection interval—the casing can be

  9. DNA-designed avian IgY antibodies: novel tools for research, diagnostics and therapy.

    PubMed

    Cova, Lucyna

    2005-12-01

    We have recently demonstrated, using the duck Hepatitis B virus (DHBV) model, closely related to human HBV, that following DNA immunization of breeding ducks with a plasmid encoding the targeted protein, specific and biologically active IgY (egg yolk immunoglobulines) are vertically transmitted from their serum into the egg yolk from which they can be extracted and purified. Thus an egg can be considered as a small "factory" for antibody production, since about 60-100 mg of purified IgY can be obtained from each egg yolk of a DNA-immunized duck. One of the major advantages of this new method of "DNA-designed" IgY antibodies is their production via immunization with a gene vector that expresses a corresponding antibody in situ in the cells of an avian host. Therefore this approach allows direct generation of antibodies from plasmid DNA and avoids the costly and tedious preparation of purified antigens required for conventional antibody production. In addition, duck IgY are of remarkable high affinity, avidity and are highly neutralizing. Moreover, the epitope pattern of IgY generated by DNA immunization of ducks is closely related to that observed in viral infection. Such duck IgY are also of particular value as immunodiagnostic tools, since they do not cross-react serologically with mammalian immunoglobulins and complement. Because IgY are resistant to the gastric barrier, the recently described DNA-designed IgY specific to H. pylori Urease B can be of particular interest for passive immunotherapy of gastrointestinal tract infections. Another interesting application is the recent generation in our laboratory of DNA-designed IgY antibodies specific to HBsAg mutants. These antibodies are currently being used to design new diagnostic assay for detection of HBV mutants that are undetectable by actual tests. Moreover, this approach allowing a quick and inexpensive production of a new generation of antibodies will provide pertinent tools to link the fields of genomics

  10. How Special Are Dark Gamma-Ray Burst: A Diagnostic Tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rod, Evert; Wiers, Ralph A. M. J.; Kouveliotou, Chryssa; Kaper, Lex; Kaneko, Yuki; Kaper, Lex

    2005-01-01

    We present here a comprehensive study of the optical/near-infrared (IR) upper limits for gamma-ray bursts that have an X-ray afterglow. We have extrapolated the X-ray afterglows to optical wavelengths based on the physics of the fireball blast wave model and compared these results with optical upper limits for a large sample of bursts. We find a small set of only three bursts out of a sample of 20 for which the upper limits are not compatible with their X-ray afterglow properties within the context of any blast wave model. This sparse sample does not allow us to conclusively determine the cause of this optical/near-IR deficit. Extinction in the host galaxy is a likely cause, but high redshifts and different afterglow mechanisms might also explain the deficit in some cases. We note that the three bursts appear to have higher than average gamma-my peak fluxes. In a magnitude versus time diagram the bursts are separated from the majority of bursts with a detected optical/near-IR afterglow. However, two gamma- ray bursts with an optical afterglow (one of which is highly reddened) also fall in this region with dark bursts, making it likely that dark bursts are at the faint end of the set of optically detected bursts, and therefore the dark bursts likely form a continuum with the bursts with a detected optical afterglow. Our work provides a useful diagnostic tool for follow-up observations for potentially dark bursts; applied to the events detected with the Swift satellite, it will significantly increase our sample of truly dark bursts and shed light upon their nature. Subject headings: dust, extinction - gamma rays: bursts Online material: machine-readable tables

  11. Feasibility of α-fetoprotein as a diagnostic tool for hepatocellular carcinoma in Korea

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Dae Geon; Kim, Hyung Joon; Kang, Hyun; Lee, Hyun Woong; Bae, Si Hyun; Lee, Joon Hyoek; Paik, Yong Han; Lee, June Sung

    2016-01-01

    Background/Aims: The aim of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of α-fetoprotein (AFP) as a diagnostic tool for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in Korean patients. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of HCC and cirrhosis patients at three hospitals. For each HCC patient, a cirrhosis patient matched for age, sex, etiology, and Child-Pugh classification was selected by simple random sampling. The performance of AFP in the diagnosis of HCC was determined using receiver operating characteristic curve analysis. Results: A total of 732 patients with HCC or cirrhosis were selected for each case and the control groups. The mean age was 54 years, and 72.4% of patients were male. The mean serum AFP levels in the HCC group and cirrhosis group were 3,315.6 and 117.2 ng/mL, respectively (p < 0.001). The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve for all HCC patients was 0.757. The sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive value of AFP was 50.55%, 87.70%, and 80.43%, respectively, at a cut-off of 20 ng/mL; 37.70%, 95.90%, and 90.20%, respectively, at a cut-off of 100 ng/mL, and 30.05%, 97.27%, and 91.67%, respectively, at a cut-off of 200 ng/mL. A cut-off of 100 ng/mL was more sensitive than one of 200 ng/mL with equivalent specificity and positive predictive value. Conclusions: The cut-off AFP value for early-stage HCC was 17.4 ng/mL. Our study cautiously suggests that AFP has a role in the diagnosis of HCC, and that the appropriate value of AFP for the diagnosis of HCC may be 100 ng/mL rather than 200 ng/mL. PMID:26767857

  12. Bedside tomographic scintigraphy: a diagnostic tool in intensive care and the emergency room

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bone, Dianna; Persson, Mikael; Ribbe, Tommy; Dale, Susanne

    2001-09-01

    Scintigraphic tomography (SPECT) with a gamma camera is an established tool for the diagnosis of disturbances in perfusion of the myocardium. The technique has been shown to be useful in the management of patients with acute myocardial infarction. However, SPECT is not widely used for seriously ill patients due to the need to transport the patient to the gamma camera system. In order to make tomography available by the bedside, a form of limited view angle tomography, Ectomography, has been implemented on a mobile gamma camera system. Projection data are acquired by rotating a slant hole collimator in front of the stationary detector and therefore, the head gantry is simple and easily transported. The mobile system is completely self-contained providing acquisition, reconstruction and bedside display. System sensitivity can be increased by using a segmented collimator, making it possible to present reconstructed sections for diagnosis less than 10 min after the start of acquisition. At present, reconstruction is performed with 2D filtered back projection. A comparative study of patients with suspected coronary artery disease has shown that Ectomography and SPECT yield similar diagnostic information. In an experimental study, in which a coronary artery was occluded, it has been possible to use Ectomography to define myocardial area at risk and final infarct size. Myocardial imaging has been performed in the intensive care unit and a pilot study has demonstrated that brain scans can also be performed. Bedside tomographic scintigraphy has been shown to be feasible and studies can be performed without moving the patient. The method should provide, therefore, an alternative to SPECT in intensive care and the emergency room.

  13. Continuous monitoring as a tool for more accurate assessment of remaining lifetime for rotors and casings of steam turbines in service

    SciTech Connect

    Leyzerovich, A.; Berlyand, V.; Pozhidaev, A.; Yatskevich, S.

    1998-12-31

    The continuous monitoring of steam parameters and metal temperatures allows assessing the individual remaining lifetime for major high-temperature design components of steam turbines in service more accurately. Characteristic metal temperature differences and corresponding maximum thermal stresses and strains are calculated on-line to estimate the metal fatigue damage accumulated during the operation process. This can be one of the diagnostic functions of the power unit`s computerized Data Acquisition System (DAS) or special Subsystem of Diagnostic monitoring (SDM) for the turbine. In doing so, the remaining lifetime is assessed in terms of actual operating conditions and operation quality for the individual unit, and the problem of lifetime extension for each object is solved more accurately. Such an approach is considered as applied to a specific case of the supercritical-pressure steam turbine of 300-MW output. The applied mathematical models were developed on the basis of combined experimentation (field) and calculation investigations of the metal temperature and strain-stress fields in the high-temperature (HP and IP) rotors and casings under the most characteristic stationary and transient operating conditions. The monitoring results are used for revealing the operating conditions with the extreme thermal stresses and specific metal damage, as well as for making decisions about scheduling the turbine`s overhauls and extension of the turbine lifetime beyond the limits having been set originally.

  14. Accurate 3d Textured Models of Vessels for the Improvement of the Educational Tools of a Museum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soile, S.; Adam, K.; Ioannidis, C.; Georgopoulos, A.

    2013-02-01

    Besides the demonstration of the findings, modern museums organize educational programs which aim to experience and knowledge sharing combined with entertainment rather than to pure learning. Toward that effort, 2D and 3D digital representations are gradually replacing the traditional recording of the findings through photos or drawings. The present paper refers to a project that aims to create 3D textured models of two lekythoi that are exhibited in the National Archaeological Museum of Athens in Greece; on the surfaces of these lekythoi scenes of the adventures of Odysseus are depicted. The project is expected to support the production of an educational movie and some other relevant interactive educational programs for the museum. The creation of accurate developments of the paintings and of accurate 3D models is the basis for the visualization of the adventures of the mythical hero. The data collection was made by using a structured light scanner consisting of two machine vision cameras that are used for the determination of geometry of the object, a high resolution camera for the recording of the texture, and a DLP projector. The creation of the final accurate 3D textured model is a complicated and tiring procedure which includes the collection of geometric data, the creation of the surface, the noise filtering, the merging of individual surfaces, the creation of a c-mesh, the creation of the UV map, the provision of the texture and, finally, the general processing of the 3D textured object. For a better result a combination of commercial and in-house software made for the automation of various steps of the procedure was used. The results derived from the above procedure were especially satisfactory in terms of accuracy and quality of the model. However, the procedure was proved to be time consuming while the use of various software packages presumes the services of a specialist.

  15. Fine structure in proton radioactivity: An accurate tool to ascertain the breaking of axial symmetry in {sup 145}Tm

    SciTech Connect

    Arumugam, P.; Ferreira, L. S.; Maglione, E.

    2008-10-15

    With a proper formalism for proton emission from triaxially deformed nuclei, we perform exact calculations of decay widths for the decays to ground and first excited 2{sup +} states in the daughter nucleus. Our results for rotational spectrum, decay width and fine structure in the case of the nucleus {sup 145}Tm lead for the first time to an accurate identification of triaxial deformation using proton emission. This work also puts in evidence the advantage of proton emission over the conventional probes to study nuclear structure at the proton drip-line.

  16. A Scalable and Accurate Targeted Gene Assembly Tool (SAT-Assembler) for Next-Generation Sequencing Data

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yuan; Sun, Yanni; Cole, James R.

    2014-01-01

    Gene assembly, which recovers gene segments from short reads, is an important step in functional analysis of next-generation sequencing data. Lacking quality reference genomes, de novo assembly is commonly used for RNA-Seq data of non-model organisms and metagenomic data. However, heterogeneous sequence coverage caused by heterogeneous expression or species abundance, similarity between isoforms or homologous genes, and large data size all pose challenges to de novo assembly. As a result, existing assembly tools tend to output fragmented contigs or chimeric contigs, or have high memory footprint. In this work, we introduce a targeted gene assembly program SAT-Assembler, which aims to recover gene families of particular interest to biologists. It addresses the above challenges by conducting family-specific homology search, homology-guided overlap graph construction, and careful graph traversal. It can be applied to both RNA-Seq and metagenomic data. Our experimental results on an Arabidopsis RNA-Seq data set and two metagenomic data sets show that SAT-Assembler has smaller memory usage, comparable or better gene coverage, and lower chimera rate for assembling a set of genes from one or multiple pathways compared with other assembly tools. Moreover, the family-specific design and rapid homology search allow SAT-Assembler to be naturally compatible with parallel computing platforms. The source code of SAT-Assembler is available at https://sourceforge.net/projects/sat-assembler/. The data sets and experimental settings can be found in supplementary material. PMID:25122209

  17. A scalable and accurate targeted gene assembly tool (SAT-Assembler) for next-generation sequencing data.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuan; Sun, Yanni; Cole, James R

    2014-08-01

    Gene assembly, which recovers gene segments from short reads, is an important step in functional analysis of next-generation sequencing data. Lacking quality reference genomes, de novo assembly is commonly used for RNA-Seq data of non-model organisms and metagenomic data. However, heterogeneous sequence coverage caused by heterogeneous expression or species abundance, similarity between isoforms or homologous genes, and large data size all pose challenges to de novo assembly. As a result, existing assembly tools tend to output fragmented contigs or chimeric contigs, or have high memory footprint. In this work, we introduce a targeted gene assembly program SAT-Assembler, which aims to recover gene families of particular interest to biologists. It addresses the above challenges by conducting family-specific homology search, homology-guided overlap graph construction, and careful graph traversal. It can be applied to both RNA-Seq and metagenomic data. Our experimental results on an Arabidopsis RNA-Seq data set and two metagenomic data sets show that SAT-Assembler has smaller memory usage, comparable or better gene coverage, and lower chimera rate for assembling a set of genes from one or multiple pathways compared with other assembly tools. Moreover, the family-specific design and rapid homology search allow SAT-Assembler to be naturally compatible with parallel computing platforms. The source code of SAT-Assembler is available at https://sourceforge.net/projects/sat-assembler/. The data sets and experimental settings can be found in supplementary material. PMID:25122209

  18. Infrared thermography as a diagnostic tool to indicate sick-house-syndrome: a case-study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ljungberg, Sven-Ake

    1996-03-01

    function, manload and demand of air flow. Field control inspections were performed partly from the inside and partly from the outside of the building. Microbial activities were investigated by traditional measurements of the emissions and contamination of indoor air, and by ocular inspections and laboratory tests of building materials. Despite the fact that the building studied has a complicated composition of surface materials, including glass, wood, steel and concrete panels, it was possible to indirectly indicate surface anomalies, related to microbial deterioration of organic materials, through mold and rot activities, due to in-exfiltration of humid air, causing moisture problems within the construction. The result from this case-study shows that thermography can become an important diagnostic tool in order to detect and map sick-house-syndromes. The project is to be continued.

  19. COPS: a sensitive and accurate tool for detecting somatic Copy Number Alterations using short-read sequence data from paired samples.

    PubMed

    Krishnan, Neeraja M; Gaur, Prakhar; Chaudhary, Rakshit; Rao, Arjun A; Panda, Binay

    2012-01-01

    Copy Number Alterations (CNAs) such as deletions and duplications; compose a larger percentage of genetic variations than single nucleotide polymorphisms or other structural variations in cancer genomes that undergo major chromosomal re-arrangements. It is, therefore, imperative to identify cancer-specific somatic copy number alterations (SCNAs), with respect to matched normal tissue, in order to understand their association with the disease. We have devised an accurate, sensitive, and easy-to-use tool, COPS, COpy number using Paired Samples, for detecting SCNAs. We rigorously tested the performance of COPS using short sequence simulated reads at various sizes and coverage of SCNAs, read depths, read lengths and also with real tumor:normal paired samples. We found COPS to perform better in comparison to other known SCNA detection tools for all evaluated parameters, namely, sensitivity (detection of true positives), specificity (detection of false positives) and size accuracy. COPS performed well for sequencing reads of all lengths when used with most upstream read alignment tools. Additionally, by incorporating a downstream boundary segmentation detection tool, the accuracy of SCNA boundaries was further improved. Here, we report an accurate, sensitive and easy to use tool in detecting cancer-specific SCNAs using short-read sequence data. In addition to cancer, COPS can be used for any disease as long as sequence reads from both disease and normal samples from the same individual are available. An added boundary segmentation detection module makes COPS detected SCNA boundaries more specific for the samples studied. COPS is available at ftp://115.119.160.213 with username "cops" and password "cops". PMID:23110103

  20. A construction of standardized near infrared hyper-spectral teeth database: a first step in the development of reliable diagnostic tool for quantification and early detection of caries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bürmen, Miran; Usenik, Peter; Fidler, Aleš; Pernuš, Franjo; Likar, Boštjan

    2011-03-01

    Dental caries is a disease characterized by demineralization of enamel crystals leading to the penetration of bacteria into the dentin and pulp. If left untreated, the disease can lead to pain, infection and tooth loss. Early detection of enamel demineralization resulting in increased enamel porosity, commonly known as white spots, is a difficult diagnostic task. Several papers reported on near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy to be a potentially useful noninvasive spectroscopic technique for early detection of caries lesions. However, the conducted studies were mostly qualitative and did not include the critical assessment of the spectral variability of the sound and carious dental tissues and influence of the water content. Such assessment is essential for development and validation of reliable qualitative and especially quantitative diagnostic tools based on NIR spectroscopy. In order to characterize the described spectral variability, a standardized diffuse reflectance hyper-spectral database was constructed by imaging 12 extracted human teeth with natural lesions of various degrees in the spectral range from 900 to 1700 nm with spectral resolution of 10 nm. Additionally, all the teeth were imaged by digital color camera. The influence of water content on the acquired spectra was characterized by monitoring the teeth during the drying process. The images were assessed by an expert, thereby obtaining the gold standard. By analyzing the acquired spectra we were able to accurately model the spectral variability of the sound dental tissues and identify the advantages and limitations of NIR hyper-spectral imaging.

  1. Toward accurate volumetry of brain aneurysms: combination of an algorithm for automatic thresholding with a 3D eraser tool.

    PubMed

    Costalat, Vincent; Maldonado, Igor Lima; Strauss, Olivier; Bonafé, Alain

    2011-06-15

    The present study describes a new approach for aneurysm volume quantification on three-dimensional angiograms, which focuses on solving three common technical problems: the variability associated with the use of manual thresholds, the irregular morphology of some aneurysms, and the imprecision of the limits between the parent artery and the aneurysm sac. The method consists of combining an algorithm for automatic threshold determination with a spherical eraser tool that allows the user to separate the image of the aneurysm from the parent artery. The accuracy of volumetry after automatic thresholding was verified with an in vitro experiment in which 57 measurements were performed using four artificial aneurysms of known volume. The reliability of the method was compared to that obtained with the technique of ellipsoid approximation in a clinical setting of 15 real angiograms and 150 measurements performed by five different users. The mean error in the measurement of the artificial aneurysms was 7.23%. The reliability of the new approach was significantly higher than that of the ellipsoid approximation. Limits of agreement between two measurements were determined with Bland-Altman plots and ranged from -14 to 13% for complex and from -10.8 to 11.03% for simple-shaped sacs. The reproducibility was lower (>20% of variation) for small aneurysms (<70 mm³) and for those presenting a very wide neck (dome-to-neck ratio<1). The method is potentially useful in the clinical practice, since it provides relatively precise, reproducible, volume quantification. A safety coiling volume can be established in order to perform sufficient but not excessive filling of the aneurysm pouch. PMID:21540054

  2. State of the art: diagnostic tools and innovative therapies for treatment of advanced thymoma and thymic carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Ried, Michael; Marx, Alexander; Götz, Andrea; Hamer, Okka; Schalke, Berthold; Hofmann, Hans-Stefan

    2016-06-01

    In this review article, state-of-the-art diagnostic tools and innovative treatments of thymoma and thymic carcinoma (TC) are described with special respect to advanced tumour stages. Complete surgical resection (R0) remains the standard therapeutic approach for almost all a priori resectable mediastinal tumours as defined by preoperative standard computed tomography (CT). If lymphoma or germ-cell tumours are differential diagnostic considerations, biopsy may be indicated. Resection status is the most important prognostic factor in thymoma and TC, followed by tumour stage. Advanced (Masaoka-Koga stage III and IVa) tumours require interdisciplinary therapy decisions based on distinctive findings of preoperative CT scan and ancillary investigations [magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)] to select cases for primary surgery or neoadjuvant strategies with optional secondary resection. In neoadjuvant settings, octreotide scans and histological evaluation of pretherapeutic needle biopsies may help to choose between somatostatin agonist/prednisolone regimens and neoadjuvant chemotherapy as first-line treatment. Finally, a multimodality treatment regime is recommended for advanced and unresectable thymic tumours. In conclusion, advanced stage thymoma and TC should preferably be treated in experienced centres in order to provide all modern diagnostic tools (imaging, histology) and innovative therapy techniques. Systemic and local (hyperthermic intrathoracic chemotherapy) medical treatments together with extended surgical resections have increased the therapeutic options in patients with advanced or recurrent thymoma and TC. PMID:26670806

  3. Structural studies of Helix aspersa agglutinin complexed with GalNAc: A lectin that serves as a diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    Pietrzyk, Agnieszka J; Bujacz, Anna; Mak, Paweł; Potempa, Barbara; Niedziela, Tomasz

    2015-11-01

    Lectins belong to a differentiated group of proteins known to possess sugar-binding properties. Due to this fact, they are interesting research targets in medical diagnostics. Helix aspersa agglutinin (HAA) is a lectin that recognizes the epitopes containing α-d-N-acetylgalactosamine (GalNAc), which is present at the surface of metastatic cancer cells. Although several reports have already described the use of HAA as a diagnostic tool, this protein was not characterized on the molecular level. Here, we present for the first time the structural information about lectin isolated from mucus of Helix aspersa (garden snail). The amino acid sequence of this agglutinin was determined by Edman degradation and tertiary as well as quaternary structure by X-ray crystallography. The high resolution crystal structure (1.38Å) and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry analysis provide the detailed information about a large part of the HAA natural glycan chain. The topology of the GalNAc binding cleft and interaction with lectin are very well defined in the structure and fully confirmed by STD HSQC NMR spectroscopy. Together, this provides structural clues regarding HAA specificity and opens possibilities to rational modifications of this important diagnostic tool. PMID:26416237

  4. Protein electrophoresis as a diagnostic and prognostic tool in raptor medicine.

    PubMed

    Tatum, L M; Zaias, J; Mealey, B K; Cray, C; Bossart, G D

    2000-12-01

    Plasma proteins of 139 healthy adult birds of prey from 10 species were separated by electrophoresis to characterize and document normal reference ranges and species-specific electrophoretic patternsand to evaluate the value of this technique for health screening, disease diagnosis, and prognostic indication. Species studied included bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), barn owl (Tyto alba), great horned owl (Bubo virginianus), turkey vulture (Cathartes aura), Harris' hawk (Parabuteo unicinctus), Stellar's sea eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus), barred owl (Strix varia), screech owl (Otus asio), and black vulture (Coragyps atratus). Several clinical cases show the diagnostic/therapeutic value of protein electrophoresis in raptors. This study establishes species-specific reference ranges for several birds of prey and discusses the benefit of electrophoresis as a diagnostic technique in health screens, as a diagnostic aid in conjunction with other tests, and as a prognostic indicator in clinical evaluation of raptors. PMID:11428396

  5. "Light-tagged" bacteriophage as a diagnostic tool for the detection of phytopathogens.

    PubMed

    Schofield, David; Bull, Carolee T; Rubio, Isael; Wechter, W Patrick; Westwater, Caroline; Molineux, Ian J

    2013-01-01

    Detection of the phytopathogen Pseudomonas cannabina pv alisalensis, the causal agent of bacterial blight of crucifers is essential for managing this disease. A phage-based diagnostic assay was developed that detects and identifies P. cannabina pv alisalensis from cultures and diseased plant specimens. A recombinant "light-tagged" reporter phage was generated by integrating the luxAB genes into the P. cannabina pv alisalensis phage PBSPCA1 genome. PBSPCA1::luxAB is viable, stable and detects P. cannabina pv alisalensis within minutes and with high sensitivity by conferring a bioluminescent signal. Detection is dependent on cell viability since cells treated with a bactericidal disinfectant are unable to elicit a signal. Importantly, the reporter phage detects P. cannabina pv alisalensis from diseased plant specimens indicating the potential of the diagnostic for disease identification. The reporter phage displays promise for the rapid and specific diagnostic detection of cultivated isolates, and infected plant specimens. PMID:22990589

  6. Does Radar Technology Support the Diagnosis of Pneumothorax? PneumoScan—A Diagnostic Point-of-Care Tool

    PubMed Central

    Lindner, T.; Conze, M.; Albers, C. E.; Leidel, B. A.; Levy, P.; Kleber, C.; De Moya, M.; Exadaktylos, A.; Stoupis, C.

    2013-01-01

    Background. A nonrecognized pneumothorax (PTX) may become a life-threatening tension PTX. A reliable point-of-care diagnostic tool could help in reduce this risk. For this purpose, we investigated the feasibility of the use of the PneumoScan, an innovative device based on micropower impulse radar (MIR). Patients and Methods. addition to a standard diagnostic protocol including clinical examination, chest X-ray (CXR), and computed tomography (CT), 24 consecutive patients with chest trauma underwent PneumoScan testing in the shock trauma room to exclude a PTX. Results. The application of the PneumoScan was simple, quick, and reliable without functional disorder. Clinical examination and CXR each revealed one and PneumoScan three out of altogether four PTXs (sensitivity 75%, specificity 100%, positive predictive value 100%, and negative predictive value 95%). The undetected PTX did not require intervention. Conclusion. The PneumoScan as a point-of-care device offers additional diagnostic value in patient management following chest trauma. Further studies with more patients have to be performed to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of the device. PMID:24187624

  7. Shear-wave splitting as a diagnostic tool for resolving plume-related mantle flow around hotspots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bokelmann, G. H.; Walker, K. T.; Klemperer, S. L.

    2003-12-01

    beneath Hawaii, Eifel, and eastern Nevada. The best plume model for Hawaii fits the few observations well, but more data are needed to critically test it. The optimum Eifel plume model predicts the splitting fast directions fairly well, with complexity observed between nearby stations that suggests contributions from lithospheric and/or shallow asthenospheric sources. Fast directions from six stations in Idaho, in addition to splitting data collected across eastern Idaho, western Utah, and Nevada are predicted well by a plume model centered in eastern Nevada, but not beneath Yellowstone. We show that shear-wave splitting may be resolving plume-related mantle flow around some hotspots, and therefore if enough splitting data are collected, they could be used as a diagnostic tool to help resolve between plume and non-plume sources for other hotspots. A helpful complement to such future splitting investigations are regional surface-wave anisotropy investigations to better determine the depth extent of azimuthal anisotropy, and the development of better tools that more accurately predict fast directions and delay times from numerical mantle flow models.

  8. The Career Assessment Diagnostic Inventory: A New Career Indecision Assessment Tool.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vidal-Brown, Sherry A.; Thompson, Bruce

    2001-01-01

    The Career Assessment Diagnostic Inventory evaluates six career indecision factors: family conflict, emotional independence, decision-making anxiety, identity development, career information, and career self-efficacy. Factor analysis and convergent validity results of scores of 539 students supported the instrument's validity. (SK)

  9. Ultrafast Laser Diagnostics for Energetic-Material Ignition Mechanisms: Tools for Physics-Based Model Development.

    SciTech Connect

    Kearney, Sean Patrick; Jilek, Brook Anton; Kohl, Ian Thomas; Farrow, Darcie; Urayama, Junji

    2014-11-01

    We present the results of an LDRD project to develop diagnostics to perform fundamental measurements of material properties during shock compression of condensed phase materials at micron spatial scales and picosecond time scales. The report is structured into three main chapters, which each focus on a different diagnostic devel opment effort. Direct picosecond laser drive is used to introduce shock waves into thin films of energetic and inert materials. The resulting laser - driven shock properties are probed via Ultrafast Time Domain Interferometry (UTDI), which can additionally be used to generate shock Hugoniot data in tabletop experiments. Stimulated Raman scattering (SRS) is developed as a temperature diagnostic. A transient absorption spectroscopy setup has been developed to probe shock - induced changes during shock compressio n. UTDI results are presented under dynamic, direct - laser - drive conditions and shock Hugoniots are estimated for inert polystyrene samples and for the explosive hexanitroazobenzene, with results from both Sandia and Lawrence Livermore presented here. SRS a nd transient absorption diagnostics are demonstrated on static thin - film samples, and paths forward to dynamic experiments are presented.

  10. A new molecular diagnostic tool for quantitatively detecting and genotyping “Candidatus Liberibacter species”

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A new molecular diagnostic method was developed for quantitative detection of “Candidatus Liberibacter” species associated with citrus Huanglongbing (“Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus”, “Ca. Liberibacter africanus” and “Ca. Liberibacter americanus”) and potato zebra chip disorder (“Ca. Liberibacter solana...

  11. Performance of a diagnostic system (Iliad) as a tool for quality assurance.

    PubMed Central

    Lau, L. M.; Warner, H. R.

    1991-01-01

    Quality Assurance improves health care through detection of quality problems and feedback to the care giver. Current review procedures employed by the Peer Review Organizations (PROs), however, appear to underdetect quality problems, particularly those arising from diagnostic errors. We studied the use of an expert diagnostic system, Iliad, to detect quality problems arising from diagnostic errors. 100 cases were selected from among those Medicare cases reviewed by the Utah PRO (UPRO) and which contained diagnoses recognized by Iliad. Iliad flagged 28 cases out of the 100 as containing diagnostic errors, and a gold standard physician review confirmed quality problems in 17 cases (60.7%). The UPRO review found 28 cases with quality problems, mostly treatment and documentation errors. The quality problems detected by Iliad appeared to be more serious than those detected by the UPRO review. Among the six cases with quality problems detected by both the UPRO and Iliad review, there was none for which the same quality problem was detected by the two procedures. The two review procedures were therefore complementary. PMID:1807567

  12. Performance of a diagnostic system (Iliad) as a tool for quality assurance.

    PubMed Central

    Lau, L. M.; Warner, H. R.

    1991-01-01

    Quality Assurance improves health care through detection of quality problems and feedback to the care giver. Current review procedures employed by the Peer Review Organizations (PROs), however, appear to under-detect quality problems, particularly those arising from diagnostic errors. We studied the use of an expert diagnostic system, Iliad, to detect quality problems arising from diagnostic errors. 100 cases were selected from among those Medicare cases reviewed by the Utah PRO (UPRO) and which contained diagnoses recognized by Iliad. Iliad flagged 28 cases out of the 100 as containing diagnostic errors, and a gold standard physician review confirmed quality problems in 17 cases (60.7%). The UPRO review found 28 cases with quality problems, mostly treatment and documentation errors. The quality problems detected by Iliad appeared to be more serious than those detected by the UPRO review. Among the six cases with quality problems detected by both the UPRO and Iliad review, there was none for which the same quality problem was detected by the two procedures. The two review procedures were therefore complementary. PMID:1807563

  13. "Light-tagged" bacteriophage as a diagnostic tool for the detection of phytopathogens

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Detection of the phytopathogen Pseudomonas cannabina pv. alisalensis, the causeal agent of bacterial blight of crucifers is essential for managing this disease. A phage-based diagnostic assay was developed that detected and identify P. cannabina pv. alisalensis from cultures and diseased plant spec...

  14. Novel calibration tools and validation concepts for microarray-based platforms used in molecular diagnostics and food safety control.

    PubMed

    Brunner, C; Hoffmann, K; Thiele, T; Schedler, U; Jehle, H; Resch-Genger, U

    2015-04-01

    Commercial platforms consisting of ready-to-use microarrays printed with target-specific DNA probes, a microarray scanner, and software for data analysis are available for different applications in medical diagnostics and food analysis, detecting, e.g., viral and bacteriological DNA sequences. The transfer of these tools from basic research to routine analysis, their broad acceptance in regulated areas, and their use in medical practice requires suitable calibration tools for regular control of instrument performance in addition to internal assay controls. Here, we present the development of a novel assay-adapted calibration slide for a commercialized DNA-based assay platform, consisting of precisely arranged fluorescent areas of various intensities obtained by incorporating different concentrations of a "green" dye and a "red" dye in a polymer matrix. These dyes present "Cy3" and "Cy5" analogues with improved photostability, chosen based upon their spectroscopic properties closely matching those of common labels for the green and red channel of microarray scanners. This simple tool allows to efficiently and regularly assess and control the performance of the microarray scanner provided with the biochip platform and to compare different scanners. It will be eventually used as fluorescence intensity scale for referencing of assays results and to enhance the overall comparability of diagnostic tests. PMID:25616702

  15. The diagnostic-therapeutic process. Workflow analysis and risk management with IT tools.

    PubMed

    Iadanza, E; Gaudio, F; Marini, F

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this work is to study the impact of an Information Technology (IT) tool on clinical risk management and Adverse Drug Events prevention in patient care. In this study we propose the workflow analysis and the application of Failure Modes Effects and Criticality Analysis (FMECA) as potential tools to assess the effectiveness of a specific IT tool in mitigating clinical risk. The study is made up of two different parts: the first one shows the decomposition and representation of the workflow of hospital departments using standardized tools from Project Management. The next phase shows the application of FMECA to the workflow, in order to identify critical issues and evaluate the risk reduction obtained using a specific IT tool, compared to the use of current resources. PMID:24110799

  16. Pediatric Sleep Questionnaires as Diagnostic or Epidemiological Tools: A Review of Currently Available Instruments

    PubMed Central

    Spruyt, Karen; Gozal, David

    2010-01-01

    An extensive list of published and unpublished instruments used to investigate or evaluate sleep issues in children was collected and assessed based on the fundamental operational principles of instrument development (11 steps). Of all the available tools identified, only a few were validated and standardized using appropriate psychometric criteria. In fact, only 2 fulfill all desirable criteria and approximately 11 instruments seem to adhere to most of the psychometric tool development requirements, and were therefore assessed in greater detail. Notwithstanding, in the rapidly developing scientific world of pediatric sleep, there are too many tools being used that have not undergone careful and methodical psychometric evaluation, and as such may be fraught with biased or invalid findings. It is hoped that this initial effort in categorizing and assessing available tools for pediatric sleep will serve as recognition of the relatively early developmental stage of our field, and provide the necessary impetus for future tool development using multicentered approaches and adequate methodologies. PMID:20934896

  17. New Diagnostic Aides for Melanoma

    PubMed Central

    Ferris, Laura K.; Harris, Ryan J.

    2012-01-01

    Synopsis Detection of melanoma at an early stage is crucial to improving survival rates in melanoma. Accurate diagnosis by current techniques including dermatoscopy remains difficult, and new tools are needed to improve our diagnostic abilities. This article discusses recent advances in diagnostic techniques including confocal scanning laser microscopy, MelaFind, Siascopy, noninvasive genomic detection, as well as other future possibilities to aid in diagnosing melanoma. Advantages and barriers to implementation of the various technologies are discussed as well. PMID:22800557

  18. The potential role of dedicated 3D breast CT as a diagnostic tool: Review and early clinical examples

    PubMed Central

    O’Connell, Avice M.; Karellas, Andrew; Vedantham, Srinivasan

    2014-01-01

    Mammography is the gold standard in routine screening for the detection of breast cancer in the general population. However limitations in sensitivity, particularly in dense breasts, has motivated the development of alternative imaging techniques such as digital breast tomosynthesis, whole breast ultrasound, breast specific gamma imaging, and more recently dedicated breast computed tomography or “breast CT”. Virtually all diagnostic work-ups of asymptomatic nonpalpable findings arise from screening mammography. In most cases, diagnostic mammography and ultrasound are sufficient for diagnosis, with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) playing an occasional role. Digital breast tomosynthesis, a limited-angle tomographic technique, is increasingly being used for screening. Dedicated breast CT has full three-dimensional (3D) capability with near-isotropic resolution, which could potentially improve diagnostic accuracy. In current dedicated breast CT clinical prototypes, 300-500 low-dose projections are acquired in a circular trajectory around the breast using a flat panel detector, followed by image reconstruction to provide the 3D breast volume. The average glandular dose to the breast from breast CT can range from as little as a two-view screening mammogram to approximately that of a diagnostic mammography examination. Breast CT displays 3D images of the internal structures of the breast; therefore, evaluation of suspicious features like microcalcifications, masses, and asymmetries can be made in multiple anatomical planes from a single scan. The potential role of breast CT for diagnostic imaging is illustrated here through clinical examples such as imaging soft tissue abnormalities and microcalcifications. The potential for breast CT to serve as an imaging tool for extent of disease evaluation and for monitoring neoadjuvant chemotherapy response is also illustrated. PMID:25199995

  19. The potential role of dedicated 3D breast CT as a diagnostic tool: review and early clinical examples.

    PubMed

    O'Connell, Avice M; Karellas, Andrew; Vedantham, Srinivasan

    2014-01-01

    Mammography is the gold standard in routine screening for the detection of breast cancer in the general population. However, limitations in sensitivity, particularly in dense breasts, has motivated the development of alternative imaging techniques such as digital breast tomosynthesis, whole breast ultrasound, breast-specific gamma imaging, and more recently dedicated breast computed tomography or "breast CT". Virtually all diagnostic work-ups of asymptomatic nonpalpable findings arise from screening mammography. In most cases, diagnostic mammography and ultrasound are sufficient for diagnosis, with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) playing an occasional role. Digital breast tomosynthesis, a limited-angle tomographic technique, is increasingly being used for screening. Dedicated breast CT has full three-dimensional (3D) capability with near-isotropic resolution, which could potentially improve diagnostic accuracy. In current dedicated breast CT clinical prototypes, 300-500 low-dose projections are acquired in a circular trajectory around the breast using a flat panel detector, followed by image reconstruction to provide the 3D breast volume. The average glandular dose to the breast from breast CT can range from as little as a two-view screening mammogram to approximately that of a diagnostic mammography examination. Breast CT displays 3D images of the internal structures of the breast; therefore, evaluation of suspicious features like microcalcifications, masses, and asymmetries can be made in multiple anatomical planes from a single scan. The potential role of breast CT for diagnostic imaging is illustrated here through clinical examples such as imaging soft tissue abnormalities and microcalcifications. The potential for breast CT to serve as an imaging tool for extent of disease evaluation and for monitoring neo-adjuvant chemotherapy response is also illustrated. PMID:25199995

  20. Methods Developed by the Tools for Engine Diagnostics Task to Monitor and Predict Rotor Damage in Real Time

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baaklini, George Y.; Smith, Kevin; Raulerson, David; Gyekenyesi, Andrew L.; Sawicki, Jerzy T.; Brasche, Lisa

    2003-01-01

    Tools for Engine Diagnostics is a major task in the Propulsion System Health Management area of the Single Aircraft Accident Prevention project under NASA s Aviation Safety Program. The major goal of the Aviation Safety Program is to reduce fatal aircraft accidents by 80 percent within 10 years and by 90 percent within 25 years. The goal of the Propulsion System Health Management area is to eliminate propulsion system malfunctions as a primary or contributing factor to the cause of aircraft accidents. The purpose of Tools for Engine Diagnostics, a 2-yr-old task, is to establish and improve tools for engine diagnostics and prognostics that measure the deformation and damage of rotating engine components at the ground level and that perform intermittent or continuous monitoring on the engine wing. In this work, nondestructive-evaluation- (NDE-) based technology is combined with model-dependent disk spin experimental simulation systems, like finite element modeling (FEM) and modal norms, to monitor and predict rotor damage in real time. Fracture mechanics time-dependent fatigue crack growth and damage-mechanics-based life estimation are being developed, and their potential use investigated. In addition, wireless eddy current and advanced acoustics are being developed for on-wing and just-in-time NDE engine inspection to provide deeper access and higher sensitivity to extend on-wing capabilities and improve inspection readiness. In the long run, these methods could establish a base for prognostic sensing while an engine is running, without any overt actions, like inspections. This damage-detection strategy includes experimentally acquired vibration-, eddy-current- and capacitance-based displacement measurements and analytically computed FEM-, modal norms-, and conventional rotordynamics-based models of well-defined damages and critical mass imbalances in rotating disks and rotors.

  1. The Role of Metabolomics in the Study of Cancer Biomarkers and in the Development of Diagnostic Tools.

    PubMed

    Trezzi, Jean-Pierre; Vlassis, Nikos; Hiller, Karsten

    2015-01-01

    This chapter introduces the emerging field of metabolomics and its application in the context of cancer biomarker research. Taking advantage of modern high-throughput technologies, and enhanced computational power, metabolomics has a high potential for cancer biomarker identification and the development of diagnostic tools. This chapter describes current metabolomics technologies used in cancer research, starting with metabolomics sample preparation, elaborating on current analytical methodologies for metabolomics measurement and introducing existing software for data analysis. The last part of this chapter deals with the statistical analysis of very large metabolomics datasets and their relevance for cancer biomarker identification. PMID:26530359

  2. A New Accurate 3D Measurement Tool to Assess the Range of Motion of the Tongue in Oral Cancer Patients: A Standardized Model.

    PubMed

    van Dijk, Simone; van Alphen, Maarten J A; Jacobi, Irene; Smeele, Ludwig E; van der Heijden, Ferdinand; Balm, Alfons J M

    2016-02-01

    In oral cancer treatment, function loss such as speech and swallowing deterioration can be severe, mostly due to reduced lingual mobility. Until now, there is no standardized measurement tool for tongue mobility and pre-operative prediction of function loss is based on expert opinion instead of evidence based insight. The purpose of this study was to assess the reliability of a triple-camera setup for the measurement of tongue range of motion (ROM) in healthy adults and its feasibility in patients with partial glossectomy. A triple-camera setup was used, and 3D coordinates of the tongue in five standardized tongue positions were achieved in 15 healthy volunteers. Maximum distances between the tip of the tongue and the maxillary midline were calculated. Each participant was recorded twice, and each movie was analysed three times by two separate raters. Intrarater, interrater and test-retest reliability were the main outcome measures. Secondly, feasibility of the method was tested in ten patients treated for oral tongue carcinoma. Intrarater, interrater and test-retest reliability all showed high correlation coefficients of >0.9 in both study groups. All healthy subjects showed perfect symmetrical tongue ROM. In patients, significant differences in lateral tongue movements were found, due to restricted tongue mobility after surgery. This triple-camera setup is a reliable measurement tool to assess three-dimensional information of tongue ROM. It constitutes an accurate tool for objective grading of reduced tongue mobility after partial glossectomy. PMID:26516075

  3. Imaging and Markers as Novel Diagnostic Tools in Detecting Insignificant Prostate Cancer: A Critical Overview

    PubMed Central

    Nosov, Alexander; Novikov, Roman; Petrov, Sergey

    2014-01-01

    Recent therapeutic advances for managing low-risk prostate cancer include the active surveillance and focal treatment. However, locating a tumor and detecting its volume by adequate sampling is still problematic. Development of predictive biomarkers guiding individual therapeutic choices remains an ongoing challenge. At the same time, prostate cancer magnetic resonance imaging is gaining increasing importance for prostate diagnostics. The high morphological resolution of T2-weighted imaging and functional MRI methods may increase the specificity and sensitivity of diagnostics. Also, recent studies founded an ability of novel biomarkers to identify clinically insignificant prostate cancer, risk of progression, and association with poor differentiation and, therefore, with clinical significance. Probably, the above mentioned methods would improve tumor characterization in terms of its volume, aggressiveness, and focality. In this review, we attempted to evaluate the applications of novel imaging techniques and biomarkers in assessing the significance of the prostate cancer. PMID:27351008

  4. Community Detection Algorithms as a Diagnostic Tool for SDSS Dataset Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burleson, John Taylor

    2015-01-01

    We explore methods for identifying similar groups of objects in large astronomical datasets, where those similarities are not trivial to determine using standard methods to identify groups or trends. We focus on the use of graph theory to identify network communities of objects, drawing on its wide usage in the biological and social sciences, specifically the k-clique and cluster modularity diagnostics. As a test case, we apply these diagnostics to the SDSS BOSS QSO catalogue, which we categorize based on their MgII and CIV equivalent widths. We find approximately 12 communities, which are moderately robust against choice of algorithm and do not appear to be consistent with a random distribution. We briefly discuss some implications of these results.

  5. Sonography: the leading diagnostic tool for diseases of the salivary glands.

    PubMed

    Zengel, P; Schrötzlmair, F; Reichel, C; Paprottka, P; Clevert, D A

    2013-06-01

    Ultrasound examination is the imaging procedure with the best predictive diagnostic capability for the salivary glands. Due to the salivary glands' relatively superficial anatomical location, clear boundary from surrounding tissue and comparatively typical echogenicity, therefore sonography is ideal for diagnosis. In addition, the technical advances in recent years, including higher resolution, color Doppler sonography, contrast-enhanced ultrasound, elastography, and tissue harmonic have lead to an improvement in diagnostic accuracy of sonography further resulting in an expansion of the range of indications. Sonography allows detection of obstructive salivary gland diseases such as stenosis or sialolithiasis, as well as sialadenosis such as Sjögren syndrome. Ultrasound examination alone is sufficient to diagnose benign tumors. However, in the case of malignant tumors, computer tomography or MRI may be also required, especially to determine the question of infiltration of the skull base. PMID:23768886

  6. [Dogs as a diagnostic tool--utopian dream or unexploited possibility?].

    PubMed

    Klockars, Tuomas

    2016-01-01

    The dog's sense of smell has been estimated to be as much as 100 000 times more sensitive than that of man. While the dog's sense of smell is utilized by various authorities, medical exploitation of dogs is scarce. A disorder causes in the body metabolic changes, which could possibly be detected by using trained dogs. Promising studies have been published in recent years about the use of diagnostic dogs in identifying cancers or antibiotic-associated diarrhea, for example. PMID:27522829

  7. DEVELOPMENT OF SIGNAL PROCESSING TOOLS AND HARDWARE FOR PIEZOELECTRIC SENSOR DIAGNOSTIC PROCESSES

    SciTech Connect

    OVERLY, TIMOTHY G.; PARK, GYUHAE; FARRAR, CHARLES R.

    2007-02-09

    This paper presents a piezoelectric sensor diagnostic and validation procedure that performs in -situ monitoring of the operational status of piezoelectric (PZT) sensor/actuator arrays used in structural health monitoring (SHM) applications. The validation of the proper function of a sensor/actuator array during operation, is a critical component to a complete and robust SHM system, especially with the large number of active sensors typically involved. The method of this technique used to obtain the health of the PZT transducers is to track their capacitive value, this value manifests in the imaginary part of measured electrical admittance. Degradation of the mechanical/electric properties of a PZT sensor/actuator as well as bonding defects between a PZT patch and a host structure can be identified with the proposed procedure. However, it was found that temperature variations and changes in sensor boundary conditions manifest themselves in similar ways in the measured electrical admittances. Therefore, they examined the effects of temperature variation and sensor boundary conditions on the sensor diagnostic process. The objective of this study is to quantify and classify several key characteristics of temperature change and to develop efficient signal processing techniques to account for those variations in the sensor diagnostis process. In addition, they developed hardware capable of making the necessary measurements to perform the sensor diagnostics and to make impedance-based SHM measurements. The paper concludes with experimental results to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed technique.

  8. SDA-based diagnostic and analysis tools for Collider Run II

    SciTech Connect

    Bolshakov, T.B.; Lebrun, P.; Panacek, S.; Papadimitriou, V.; Slaughter, J.; Xiao, A.; /Fermilab

    2005-05-01

    Operating and improving the understanding of the Fermilab Accelerator Complex for the colliding beam experiments requires advanced software methods and tools. The Shot Data Analysis (SDA) has been developed to fulfill this need. Data from the Fermilab Accelerator Complex is stored in a relational database, and is served to programs and users via Web-based tools. Summary tables are systematically generated during and after a store. These tables (the Supertable, the Recomputed Emittances, the Recomputed Intensities and other tables) are discussed here.

  9. The ANAM lacks utility as a diagnostic or screening tool for concussion more than 10 days following injury.

    PubMed

    Coldren, Rodney L; Russell, Michael L; Parish, Robert V; Dretsch, Michael; Kelly, Mark P

    2012-02-01

    Congress has mandated that the Department of Defense perform screening for concussion, or mild traumatic brain injury, on all service members redeploying from Iraq and Afghanistan. However, the retrospective diagnosis of concussion is complicated by the subjective nature of the complaints, overlap of symptoms with other conditions, and the normally rapid recovery of neurocognitive function following a concussive event. One diagnostic and screening test in current use by the Department of Defense is the Automated Neuropsychological Assessment Metrics (ANAM). A team of researchers deployed to Iraq between January and April 2009 to test the validity of the ANAM for the diagnosis of concussion in the combat environment. Performance by concussed participants on all six ANAM subtests was compared with that of controls. The ANAM appears to have no utility as an individual diagnostic or population screening tool for the detection of neurocognitive dysfunction from a single, uncomplicated concussion when administered 10 or more days following injury. Further studies are required to determine the modalities providing optimal sensitivity and specificity for use as diagnostic or screening tests beyond the first 72-hour acute postinjury period. PMID:22360064

  10. Muscle magnetic resonance imaging of the lower limbs: valuable diagnostic tool in the investigation of childhood neuromuscular disorders.

    PubMed

    Kana, Veronika; Kellenberger, Christian J; Rushing, Elisabeth Jane; Klein, Andrea

    2014-10-01

    Children presenting with neuromuscular symptoms are subject to exhaustive investigations. As it is noninvasive, muscle magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is an important diagnostic tool in children, yet its impact has so far been mainly studied in small groups of genetically defined diseases, where specific MRI patterns are known. To assess the contribution of muscle MRI of the lower limbs in a diverse cohort of patients, we reviewed the diagnostic findings in 39 patients with a suspected neuromuscular disorder that underwent muscle MRI (28/39), biopsy (26/39), or both (18/39). MRI was performed without sedation in 26 of 28 patients at a mean age of 10 years (range, 1-27 years). In 10 of 28 cases (35%), MRI significantly contributed to the final diagnosis, and in 7 of 28 cases (25%), muscle MRI directly instructed genetic testing. These cases included Bethlem myopathy, laminopathy, calpainopathy, and RYR1-related myopathies. Muscle MRI serves as a valuable additional tool to guide diagnosis in suspected neuromuscular disorders in children, especially in cases with nonspecific biopsy findings. PMID:25025777

  11. Critical Pitfalls in the use of BRAF Mutation as a Diagnostic Tool in Thyroid Nodules: a Case Report.

    PubMed

    Kuhn, Elisabetta; Ragazzi, Moira; Zini, Michele; Giordano, Davide; Nicoli, Davide; Piana, Simonetta

    2016-09-01

    Thyroid fine-needle aspiration (FNA) cytology is the primary tool for the diagnostic evaluation of thyroid nodules. BRAF mutation analysis is employed as an ancillary tool in indeterminate cases, as recommended by the American Thyroid Association management guidelines. Hereby, we report the case of a 73-year-old woman who presented an 8-mm-size, ill-defined, left thyroid nodule. FNA resulted "suspicious for papillary thyroid carcinoma". BRAF mutation status was analyzed, and somatic BRAF (V600E) mutation identified. The patient underwent a total thyroidectomy. At histological examination, the nodule was composed of Langerhans cells, admixed with many eosinophils. A final diagnosis of Langerhans cell histiocytosis of the thyroid was made. Our case emphasizes the critical diagnostic pitfalls due to the use of BRAF (V600E) mutation analysis in thyroid FNA. Notably, BRAF (V600E) mutation is common in melanoma, colorectal carcinoma, lung carcinoma, ovarian carcinoma, brain tumors, hairy cell leukemia, multiple myeloma, and histiocytoses. Therefore, in cases of indeterminate FNA with unclassifiable atypical cells BRAF (V600E) mutated, the possibility of a localization of hystiocytosis or a secondary thyroid malignancy should be taken into account. PMID:26782803

  12. Use of Molecular Diagnostic Tools for the Identification of Species Responsible for Snakebite in Nepal: A Pilot Study

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Sanjib Kumar; Kuch, Ulrich; Höde, Patrick; Bruhse, Laura; Pandey, Deb P.; Ghimire, Anup; Chappuis, François; Alirol, Emilie

    2016-01-01

    Snakebite is an important medical emergency in rural Nepal. Correct identification of the biting species is crucial for clinicians to choose appropriate treatment and anticipate complications. This is particularly important for neurotoxic envenoming which, depending on the snake species involved, may not respond to available antivenoms. Adequate species identification tools are lacking. This study used a combination of morphological and molecular approaches (PCR-aided DNA sequencing from swabs of bite sites) to determine the contribution of venomous and non-venomous species to the snakebite burden in southern Nepal. Out of 749 patients admitted with a history of snakebite to one of three study centres, the biting species could be identified in 194 (25.9%). Out of these, 87 had been bitten by a venomous snake, most commonly the Indian spectacled cobra (Naja naja; n = 42) and the common krait (Bungarus caeruleus; n = 22). When both morphological identification and PCR/sequencing results were available, a 100% agreement was noted. The probability of a positive PCR result was significantly lower among patients who had used inadequate “first aid” measures (e.g. tourniquets or local application of remedies). This study is the first to report the use of forensic genetics methods for snake species identification in a prospective clinical study. If high diagnostic accuracy is confirmed in larger cohorts, this method will be a very useful reference diagnostic tool for epidemiological investigations and clinical studies. PMID:27105074

  13. Use of Molecular Diagnostic Tools for the Identification of Species Responsible for Snakebite in Nepal: A Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Sanjib Kumar; Kuch, Ulrich; Höde, Patrick; Bruhse, Laura; Pandey, Deb P; Ghimire, Anup; Chappuis, François; Alirol, Emilie

    2016-04-01

    Snakebite is an important medical emergency in rural Nepal. Correct identification of the biting species is crucial for clinicians to choose appropriate treatment and anticipate complications. This is particularly important for neurotoxic envenoming which, depending on the snake species involved, may not respond to available antivenoms. Adequate species identification tools are lacking. This study used a combination of morphological and molecular approaches (PCR-aided DNA sequencing from swabs of bite sites) to determine the contribution of venomous and non-venomous species to the snakebite burden in southern Nepal. Out of 749 patients admitted with a history of snakebite to one of three study centres, the biting species could be identified in 194 (25.9%). Out of these, 87 had been bitten by a venomous snake, most commonly the Indian spectacled cobra (Naja naja; n = 42) and the common krait (Bungarus caeruleus; n = 22). When both morphological identification and PCR/sequencing results were available, a 100% agreement was noted. The probability of a positive PCR result was significantly lower among patients who had used inadequate "first aid" measures (e.g. tourniquets or local application of remedies). This study is the first to report the use of forensic genetics methods for snake species identification in a prospective clinical study. If high diagnostic accuracy is confirmed in larger cohorts, this method will be a very useful reference diagnostic tool for epidemiological investigations and clinical studies. PMID:27105074

  14. A small noncoding RNA signature found in exosomes of GBM patient serum as a diagnostic tool

    PubMed Central

    Manterola, Lorea; Guruceaga, Elizabeth; Pérez-Larraya, Jaime Gállego; González-Huarriz, Marisol; Jauregui, Patricia; Tejada, Sonia; Diez-Valle, Ricardo; Segura, Victor; Samprón, Nicolás; Barrena, Cristina; Ruiz, Irune; Agirre, Amaia; Ayuso, Ángel; Rodríguez, Javier; González, Álvaro; Xipell, Enric; Matheu, Ander; López de Munain, Adolfo; Tuñón, Teresa; Zazpe, Idoya; García-Foncillas, Jesús; Paris, Sophie; Delattre, Jean Yves; Alonso, Marta M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most frequent malignant brain tumor in adults, and its prognosis remains dismal despite intensive research and therapeutic advances. Diagnostic biomarkers would be clinically meaningful to allow for early detection of the tumor and for those cases in which surgery is contraindicated or biopsy results are inconclusive. Recent findings show that GBM cells release microvesicles that contain a select subset of cellular proteins and RNA. The aim of this hypothesis-generating study was to assess the diagnostic potential of miRNAs found in microvesicles isolated from the serum of GBM patients. Methods To control disease heterogeneity, we used patients with newly diagnosed GBM. In the discovery stage, PCR-based TaqMan Low Density Arrays followed by individual quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction were used to test the differences in the miRNA expression levels of serum microvesicles among 25 GBM patients and healthy controls paired by age and sex. The detected noncoding RNAs were then validated in another 50 GBM patients. Results We found that the expression levels of 1 small noncoding RNA (RNU6-1) and 2 microRNAs (miR-320 and miR-574-3p) were significantly associated with a GBM diagnosis. In addition, RNU6-1 was consistently an independent predictor of a GBM diagnosis. Conclusions Altogether our results uncovered a small noncoding RNA signature in microvesicles isolated from GBM patient serum that could be used as a fast and reliable differential diagnostic biomarker. PMID:24435880

  15. SU-E-J-17: A Study of Accelerator-Induced Cerenkov Radiation as a Beam Diagnostic and Dosimetry Tool

    SciTech Connect

    Bateman, F; Tosh, R

    2014-06-01

    Purpose: To investigate accelerator-induced Cerenkov radiation imaging as a possible beam diagnostic and medical dosimetry tool. Methods: Cerenkov emission produced by clinical accelerator beams in a water phantom was imaged using a camera system comprised of a high-sensitivity thermoelectrically-cooled CCD camera coupled to a large aperture (f/0.75) objective lens with 16:1 magnification. This large format lens allows a significant amount of the available Cerenkov light to be collected and focused onto the CCD camera to form the image. Preliminary images, obtained with 6 MV photon beams, used an unshielded camera mounted horizontally with the beam normal to the water surface, and confirmed the detection of Cerenkov radiation. Several improvements were subsequently made including the addition of radiation shielding around the camera, and altering of the beam and camera angles to give a more favorable geometry for Cerenkov light collection. A detailed study was then undertaken over a range of electron and photon beam energies and dose rates to investigate the possibility of using this technique for beam diagnostics and dosimetry. Results: A series of images were obtained at a fixed dose rate over a range of electron energies from 6 to 20 MeV. The location of maximum intensity was found to vary linearly with the energy of the beam. A linear relationship was also found between the light observed from a fixed point on the central axis and the dose rate for both photon and electron beams. Conclusion: We have found that the analysis of images of beam-induced Cerenkov light in a water phantom has potential for use as a beam diagnostic and medical dosimetry tool. Our future goals include the calibration of the light output in terms of radiation dose and development of a tomographic system for 3D Cerenkov imaging in water phantoms and other media.

  16. Phase-contrast enhanced mammography: A new diagnostic tool for breast imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Wang Zhentian; Thuering, Thomas; David, Christian; Roessl, Ewald; Trippel, Mafalda; Kubik-Huch, Rahel A.; Singer, Gad; Hohl, Michael K.; Hauser, Nik; Stampanoni, Marco

    2012-07-31

    Phase contrast and scattering-based X-ray imaging can potentially revolutionize the radiological approach to breast imaging by providing additional and complementary information to conventional, absorption-based methods. We investigated native, non-fixed whole breast samples using a grating interferometer with an X-ray tube-based configuration. Our approach simultaneously recorded absorption, differential phase contrast and small-angle scattering signals. The results show that this novel technique - combined with a dedicated image fusion algorithm - has the potential to deliver enhanced breast imaging with complementary information for an improved diagnostic process.

  17. A contactless microwave-based diagnostic tool for high repetition rate laser systems

    SciTech Connect

    Braggio, C.; Borghesani, A. F.

    2014-02-15

    We report on a novel electro-optic device for the diagnostics of high repetition rate laser systems. It is composed of a microwave receiver and of a second order nonlinear crystal, whose irradiation with a train of short laser pulses produces a time-dependent polarization in the crystal itself as a consequence of optical rectification. This process gives rise to the emission of microwave radiation that is detected by a receiver and is analyzed to infer the repetition rate and intensity of the pulses. We believe that this new method may overcome some of the limitations of photodetection techniques.

  18. Phase-contrast enhanced mammography: A new diagnostic tool for breast imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhentian; Thuering, Thomas; David, Christian; Roessl, Ewald; Trippel, Mafalda; Kubik-Huch, Rahel A.; Singer, Gad; Hohl, Michael K.; Hauser, Nik; Stampanoni, Marco

    2012-07-01

    Phase contrast and scattering-based X-ray imaging can potentially revolutionize the radiological approach to breast imaging by providing additional and complementary information to conventional, absorption-based methods. We investigated native, non-fixed whole breast samples using a grating interferometer with an X-ray tube-based configuration. Our approach simultaneously recorded absorption, differential phase contrast and small-angle scattering signals. The results show that this novel technique - combined with a dedicated image fusion algorithm - has the potential to deliver enhanced breast imaging with complementary information for an improved diagnostic process.

  19. Quantum Cascade Laser Absorption Spectroscopy as a Plasma Diagnostic Tool: An Overview

    PubMed Central

    Welzel, Stefan; Hempel, Frank; Hübner, Marko; Lang, Norbert; Davies, Paul B.; Röpcke, Jürgen

    2010-01-01

    The recent availability of thermoelectrically cooled pulsed and continuous wave quantum and inter-band cascade lasers in the mid-infrared spectral region has led to significant improvements and new developments in chemical sensing techniques using in-situ laser absorption spectroscopy for plasma diagnostic purposes. The aim of this article is therefore two-fold: (i) to summarize the challenges which arise in the application of quantum cascade lasers in such environments, and, (ii) to provide an overview of recent spectroscopic results (encompassing cavity enhanced methods) obtained in different kinds of plasma used in both research and industry. PMID:22163581

  20. Incomplete Kawasaki disease: The usefulness of BCG reactivation as a diagnostic tool

    PubMed Central

    Suliman, Omer S.M.; Abdelnasser, Mohamed

    2012-01-01

    Kawasaki disease (KD) is an extremely rare condition in infants younger than 3 months old. Cardiovascular complications are unfortunately most common in young infants and it is in this age group, incomplete Kawasaki disease (IKD) is more frequently reported. Because IKD is a diagnostic dilemma, any sign that could help early diagnosis, such as BCG reactivation is useful. Here we report on an infant less than 3 months old with IKD wherein, BCG reactivation helped us in making the diagnosis. In this article, we highlight the usefulness of this sign for early diagnosis of IKD, especially in countries where BCG vaccination is still part of the immunization schedule.

  1. L-Shell Spectroscopy of Au as a Temperature Diagnostic Tool

    SciTech Connect

    Trabert, E; Hansen, S B; Beiersdorfer, P; Brown, G V; Widmann, K; Chung, H K

    2008-03-27

    In order to develop plasma diagnostic for reduced-size hot hohlraums under laser irradiation, they have studied the L-shell emission from highly charged gold ions in the SuperEBIT electron beam ion trap. The resolving power necessary to identify emission features from individual charge states in a picket fence pattern has been estimated, and the observed radiation features have been compared with atomic structure calculations. They find that the strong 3d{sub 5/2} {yields} 2p{sub 3/2} emission features are particularly useful in determining the charge state distribution and average ion charge , which are strongly sensitive to the electron temperature.

  2. Conflict management, Part 1. Conflict management checklist: a diagnostic tool for assessing conflict in organizations.

    PubMed

    Siders, C T; Aschenbrener, C A

    1999-01-01

    Complex interpersonal conflicts are inevitable in the high speed, high stakes, pressured work of health care. Poorly managed, conflict saps productivity, erodes trust, and spawns additional disputes. Well managed, conflict can enhance the self-confidence and self-esteem of the parties, build relationships, and engender creative solutions beyond expectations. Just as thoughtful differential diagnosis precedes optimum treatment in the doctor-patient relationship, management of conflict is greatly enhanced when preceded by careful assessment. In the first of two articles, the authors present a diagnostic approach, the Conflict Management Checklist, to increase self-awareness and decrease anxiety around conflict. PMID:10557482

  3. TRTViewer: Monitoring and Diagnostic Tool for the TRT Detector of the ATLAS Experiment at LHC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smirnov, S. Yu.; Tikhomirov, V. O.

    TRTViewer is the dedicated software tool for monitoring of the ATLAS Transition Radiation Tracker (TRT) performance at dif- ferent electronics levels: individual channels, readout chips or electronic boards. It can use several sources of input information - from direct DAQ stream or raw data files to ROOT files with processed analysis histograms. Using TRTViewer one can quickly estimate the TRT operational parameters - occupancy, efficiency, timing, reveal problematic regions with noisy, dead or inefficient channels, check calibration uniformity, etc. This tool is widely used by shifters in ATLAS Control Room and also by TRT experts during electronics installation, tuning, operation control and express-offline data analysis.

  4. Quantitative Electroencephalography as a Diagnostic Tool for Alzheimer's Dementia in Adults with Down Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Salem, Lise Cronberg; Sabers, Anne; Kjaer, Troels W.; Musaeus, Christian; Nielsen, Martin N.; Nielsen, Anne-Grete; Waldemar, Gunhild

    2015-01-01

    Background Assessment of dementia in individuals with intellectual disability is complex due to great inter-individual variability in cognitive function prior to dementia and a lack of standardized instruments. Studies have indicated that quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG) results may be used as a diagnostic marker for dementia. The aim of this study was to examine the value of qEEG in the diagnostic evaluation of dementia in patients with Down syndrome (DS). Method The study included 21 patients with DS and mild-to-moderate dementia due to Alzheimer's disease (DS-AD) and 16 age-matched adults with DS without cognitive deterioration assessed by the informant-based Dementia Screening Questionnaire in Intellectual Disability (DSQIID). Conventional EEG was performed and analysed quantitatively using fast Fourier transformation. Outcomes were centroid frequency, peak frequency, absolute power, and relative power. Results In several regions of the brain, a significant decrease in the theta-1 band (4-7 Hz) was identified for the centroid frequency. A significant negative correlation was demonstrated between the mean of the centroid frequency of the theta-1 band and the total DSQIID score. Conclusion We found that qEEG can detect a significant decrease in centroid frequency in a sample of patients with DS-AD as compared to a sample of adults with DS and no cognitive deterioration. PMID:26628899

  5. Diagnostic and Prognostic Tools for Residual Life Estimation in Aging Nuclear Power Plant Components

    SciTech Connect

    Ramuhalli, Pradeep; Bond, Leonard J.; Griffin, Jeffrey W.; Henager, Charles H.; Dixit, Mukul

    2011-06-23

    A central issue in life extension for the current fleet of light water nuclear power reactors (LWR) is the early detection and monitoring of significant materials degradation. To meet this need, nondestructive methods that are suitable for continuous monitoring over extended time periods (months to years) are needed. A related issue is the ability to estimate remaining useful life (RUL) of components and systems based on condition assessment or degradation information. Monitoring for early detection of materials degradation requires novel sensors and enhanced data integration techniques. A range of acoustic and electromagnetic measurement methods may be suitable, including acoustic microscopy, eddy current and magnetic Barkhausen emission. Prognostic methods that predict rate of degradation and remaining life based on phenomena that can be described by linear elastic fracture mechanics have been reported by several researchers. However, the challenge of predicting remaining life starting from earlier phases of degradation is largely unsolved. This paper discusses an assessment of selected diagnostic techniques, and the application of Bayesian prognostic algorithms to detection of early degradation and rate of degradation/life prediction. Such measurement and modeling methods are expected to form the basis for a new range of advanced diagnostic and prognostic approaches for assessing and monitoring life extension of ageing light water reactors.

  6. Quantified light-induced fluorescence, review of a diagnostic tool in prevention of oral disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Josselin de Jong, Elbert; Higham, Susan M.; Smith, Philip W.; van Daelen, Catherina J.; van der Veen, Monique H.

    2009-05-01

    Diagnostic methods for the use in preventive dentistry are being developed continuously. Few of these find their way into general practice. Although the general trend in medicine is to focus on disease prevention and early diagnostics, in dentistry this is still not the case. Nevertheless, in dental research some of these methods seem to be promising for near future use by the general dental professional. In this paper an overview is given of a method called quantitative light-induced fluorescence or (QLF) in which visible and harmless light excites the teeth in the patient's mouth to produce fluorescent images, which can be stored on disk and computer analyzed. White spots (early dental caries) are detected and quantified as well as bacterial metabolites on and in the teeth. An overview of research to validate the technique and modeling to further the understanding of the technique by Monte Carlo simulation is given and it is shown that the fluorescence phenomena can be described by the simulation model in a qualitative way. A model describing the visibility of red fluorescence from within the dental tissue is added, as this was still lacking in current literature. An overview is given of the clinical images made with the system and of the extensive research which has been done. The QLF™ technology has been shown to be of importance when used in clinical trials with respect to the testing of toothpastes and preventive treatments. It is expected that the QLF™ technology will soon find its way into the general dental practice.

  7. Is intrapartum fetal blood sampling a gold standard diagnostic tool for fetal distress?

    PubMed

    Mahendru, Amita A; Lees, Christoph C

    2011-06-01

    Developed in 1960s, cardiotocography is a screening test and fetal blood sampling (FBS) is an adjunctive, diagnostic technique to detect fetal hypoxia. A fetal blood sample pH value of less than 7.20 has a higher specificity than a pathological CTG to predict low Apgar score at 1 min. Though with a pathological CTG and despite a normal FBS pH value the risk of delivering a hypoxic infant is 30-50%, FBS has assumed considerable importance in purportedly reducing unnecessary obstetric intervention. The evidence for this is weak: the use of FBS with CTG has been shown to reduce operative vaginal deliveries though not Caesarean sections due to fetal distress. There is no difference in the umbilical artery pH at delivery with the use of intermittent FBS with CTG compared to CTG alone. FBS is an invasive procedure: obtaining an adequate blood sample is often difficult and the pH results are affected by handling of the sample, aerobic contamination and processing. Validation of intrapartum FBS requires that the pH and other values obtained are compared to a 'gold standard' technique. Although FBS has been compared to other tests such as scalp lactate, pulse oximetry, fetal ECG waveform analysis, and central haemodynamics in labouring rhesus monkeys, none of these can be considered as 'gold standard'. In the light of the existing evidence, the role of intrapartum FBS as a gold standard diagnostic technique is unproven. PMID:21300427

  8. Central Nervous System Involvement in Adult Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia: Diagnostic Tools, Prophylaxis, and Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Del Principe, Maria Ilaria; Maurillo, Luca; Buccisano, Francesco; Sconocchia, Giuseppe; Cefalo, Mariagiovanna; De Santis, Giovanna; Di Veroli, Ambra; Ditto, Concetta; Nasso, Daniela; Postorino, Massimiliano; Refrigeri, Marco; Attrotto, Cristina; Del Poeta, Giovanni; Lo-Coco, Francesco; Amadori, Sergio; Venditti, Adriano

    2014-01-01

    In adult patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), Central Nervous System (CNS) involvement is associated with a very poor prognosis. The diagnostic assessment of this condition relies on the use of neuroradiology, conventional cytology (CC) and flow cytometry (FCM). Among these approaches, which is the gold standard it is still a matter of debate. Neuroradiology and CC have a limited sensitivity with a higher rate of false negative results. FCM demonstrated a superior sensitivity over CC, particularly when low levels of CNS infiltrating cells are present. Although prospective studies of a large series of patients are still awaited, a positive finding by FCM appears to anticipate an adverse outcome even if CC shows no infiltration. Current strategies for adult ALL CNS-directed prophylaxis or therapy involve systemic and intrathecal chemotherapy and radiation therapy. An early and frequent intrathecal injection of cytostatic combined with systemic chemotherapy is the most effective strategy to reduce the frequency of CNS involvement. In patients with CNS overt ALL, at diagnosis or upon relapse, allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation might be considered. This review discusses risk factors, diagnostic techniques for identification of CNS infiltration and modalities of prophylaxis and therapy to manage it. PMID:25408861

  9. The role of radiology in diagnosis and management of drug mules: an update with new challenges and new diagnostic tools.

    PubMed

    Bulakci, Mesut; Cengel, Ferhat

    2016-01-01

    Emergency physicians and radiologists have been increasingly encountering internal concealment of illegal drugs. The packages commonly contain powdered solid drugs such as cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine and hashish, but they may also contain cocaine in the liquid form. The second type of package has recently been more commonly encountered, and poses a greater diagnostic challenge. As clinical evaluation and laboratory tests frequently fail to make the correct diagnosis, imaging examination is typically required. Imaging methods assume a vital role in the diagnosis, follow-up and management. Abdominal X-ray, ultrasonography, CT and MRI are used for the imaging purposes. Among the aforementioned methods, low-dose CT is state-of-the-art in these cases. It is of paramount importance that radiologists have a full knowledge of the imaging characteristics of these packages and accurately guide physicians and security officials. PMID:26867003

  10. New Diagnostic Tools for Detecting Rift Valley Fever (RVF) and other Arboviruses

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The outbreak of West Nile virus in the United Sates and the recent outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus in East Africa have highlighted the need for validated early detection tools for arthropod-borne animal diseases. The Arthropod-Borne Animal Diseases Research Laboratory (ABADRL) has been inv...

  11. C-Arm Cone-Beam CT-Guided Transthoracic Lung Core Needle Biopsy as a Standard Diagnostic Tool

    PubMed Central

    Jaconi, Marta; Pagni, Fabio; Vacirca, Francesco; Leni, Davide; Corso, Rocco; Cortinovis, Diego; Bidoli, Paolo; Bono, Francesca; Cuttin, Maria S.; Valente, Maria G.; Pesci, Alberto; Bedini, Vittorio A.; Leone, Biagio E.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract C-arm cone-beam computed tomography (CT)-guided transthoracic lung core needle biopsy (CNB) is a safe and accurate procedure for the evaluation of patients with pulmonary nodules. This article will focus on the clinical features related to CNB in terms of diagnostic performance and complication rate. Moreover, the concept of categorizing pathological diagnosis into 4 categories, which could be used for clinical management, follow-up, and quality assurance is also introduced. We retrospectively collected data regarding 375 C-arm cone-beam CT-guided CNBs from January 2010 and June 2014. Clinical and radiological variables were evaluated in terms of success or failure rate. Pathological reports were inserted in 4 homogenous groups (nondiagnostic-L1, benign-L2, malignant not otherwise specified-L3, and malignant with specific histotype-L4), defining for each category a hierarchy of suggested actions. The sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive value and accuracy for patients subjected to CNBs were of 96.8%, 100%, 100%, 100%, and 97.2%, respectively. Roughly 75% of our samples were diagnosed as malignant, with 60% lung adenocarcinoma diagnoses. Molecular analyses were performed on 85 malignant samples to verify applicability of targeted therapy. The rate of “nondiagnostic” samples was 12%. C-arm cone-beam CT-guided transthoracic lung CNB can represent the gold standard for the diagnostic evaluation of pulmonary nodules. A clinical and pathological multidisciplinary evaluation of CNBs was needed in terms of integration of radiological, histological, and oncological data. This approach provided exceptional performances in terms of specificity, positive and negative predictive values; sensitivity in our series was lower compared with other large studies, probably due to the application of strong criteria of adequacy for CNBs (L1 class rate). The satisfactory rate of collected material was evaluated not only in terms of merely diagnostic

  12. Touch imprint cytology: a rapid diagnostic tool for oral squamous cell carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Geetha, L; Astekar, M; Ashok, K N; Sowmya, G V

    2015-07-01

    Techniques for intraoperative pathologic examination of oral squamous cell carcinoma are rare in the literature. We evaluated the advantages and limitations of touch imprint cytology for intraoperative diagnosis of oral squamous cell carcinoma. We used 30 incisional biopsies of clinically diagnosed oral squamous cell carcinoma and compared touch imprint cytology to histopathological sections. Touch imprint cytology showed 24 specimens positive for malignancy, two suspicious for malignancy and four inadequate specimens. The accuracy of the test was 93.2%. Touch imprint cytology is an accurate, simple, rapid and cost-effective method that aids diagnosis of oral squamous cell carcinoma during operation, but it does not replace incisional biopsy. PMID:25801179

  13. Evaluation of implant sonication as a diagnostic tool in implant-associated infections.

    PubMed

    Dapunt, Ulrike; Lehner, Burkhard; Burckhardt, Irene; Zimmermann, Stefan; Hänsch, Gertrud M; Ewerbeck, Volker

    2014-01-01

    Infections of implants pose a severe problem in the field of orthopedic surgery, because they can cause bone degradation with subsequent loosening of the implant. The discrimination between septic implant loosening and aseptic loosening can be a challenge, and hence novel diagnostic methods have been introduced to improve the detection of bacteria. Because a major problem is their firm adherence to implants due to biofilm formation, sonication has been introduced, followed by identification of bacteria by culture or genetic methods. In this study, we compared the results obtained after sonication pretreatment with those of microbiological testing of tissue samples and histopathological evaluation of the same tissue. Furthermore, we related the results obtained following sonication to the clinical diagnosis of septic or aseptic implant loosening, respectively. Sonication of explanted devices also enhances the likelihood of detecting bacterial growth in patients who were considered "aseptic" based on the clinical evaluation. PMID:25199070

  14. Wave launching as a diagnostic tool to investigate plasma turbulence (abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsui, H. Y. W.; Bengtson, R. D.; Li, G. X.; Richards, B.; Uckan, T.; Uglum, J.; Wootton, A. J.

    1995-01-01

    An experimental scheme to extend the investigation of plasma turbulence has been implemented. It involves driving waves into the plasma to modify the statistical properties of the fluctuations; the dynamical balance of the turbulence is perturbed via the injection of waves at selected spectral regions. New analysis techniques based on conditional sampling and high order correlation are developed for studying the wave launching and the wave-wave coupling processes. Experimental results from TEXT-U tokamak show that the launched waves interact with the intrinsic fluctuations both linearly and nonlinearly. The attainment of driven nonlinearity is necessary for this diagnostic scheme to work. It is also the key to an active modification and control of edge turbulence in tokamaks.

  15. Synthetic glycolipid-like constructs as tools for glycobiology research, diagnostics, and as potential therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Korchagina, E Y; Henry, S M

    2015-07-01

    Function-spacer-lipid (FSL) constructs are amphiphilic molecules that are able to disperse in water and then self-assemble into cell membranes or onto solid surfaces. Modification of a biological or non-biological surface is very easy and achieved by simple contact of the surface with an appropriately buffered solution containing one or more FSLs. When the functional head group of the FSL is a glycan, glycan modified surfaces can be rapidly formed. Once cells, viruses, or solid surfaces are FSL modified with either simple or complex glycans, they can be used in vitro and/or in vivo to measure interactions with cells, viruses, antibodies, and lectins. FSLs have already been used in a variety of techniques including antibody specificity mapping, antibody/toxin neutralization, diagnostic assays, immune system manipulation, and animal modeling of transfusion reactions. FSLs offer the easiest and fastest method available to achieve a glycan-modified surface. PMID:26542000

  16. Tandem repeat markers as novel diagnostic tools for high resolution fingerprinting of Wolbachia

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Strains of the endosymbiotic bacterium Wolbachia pipientis are extremely diverse both genotypically and in terms of their induced phenotypes in invertebrate hosts. Despite extensive molecular characterisation of Wolbachia diversity, little is known about the actual genomic diversity within or between closely related strains that group tightly on the basis of existing gene marker systems, including Multiple Locus Sequence Typing (MLST). There is an urgent need for higher resolution fingerprinting markers of Wolbachia for studies of population genetics, horizontal transmission and experimental evolution. Results The genome of the wMel Wolbachia strain that infects Drosophila melanogaster contains inter- and intragenic tandem repeats that may evolve through expansion or contraction. We identified hypervariable regions in wMel, including intergenic Variable Number Tandem Repeats (VNTRs), and genes encoding ankyrin (ANK) repeat domains. We amplified these markers from 14 related Wolbachia strains belonging to supergroup A and were successful in differentiating size polymorphic alleles. Because of their tandemly repeated structure and length polymorphism, the markers can be used in a PCR-diagnostic multilocus typing approach, analogous to the Multiple Locus VNTR Analysis (MLVA) established for many other bacteria and organisms. The isolated markers are highly specific for supergroup A and not informative for other supergroups. However, in silico analysis of completed genomes from other supergroups revealed the presence of tandem repeats that are variable and could therefore be useful for typing target strains. Conclusions Wolbachia genomes contain inter- and intragenic tandem repeats that evolve through expansion or contraction. A selection of polymorphic tandem repeats is a novel and useful PCR diagnostic extension to the existing MLST typing system of Wolbachia, as it allows rapid and inexpensive high-throughput fingerprinting of closely related strains for

  17. Comparison of diagnostic tools for the detection of aspergillosis in blood samples of experimentally infected falcons.

    PubMed

    Fischer, D; Van Waeyenberghe, L; Cray, C; Gross, M; Usleber, E; Pasmans, F; Martel, A; Lierz, M

    2014-12-01

    Antemortem diagnosis of avian aspergillosis is very challenging. Diagnostic assays using blood samples would aid in an early and more definitive diagnosis. In the current study, detection of anti-Aspergillus antibodies, Aspergillus antigen, and Aspergillus toxin (fumigaclavine A), protein electrophoresis and measurement of acute-phase protein concentrations were performed on serum of 18 adult and plasma of 21 juvenile gyr-saker hybrid falcons (Falco rusticolus x Falco cherrug). Adult (n = 15) and juvenile (n = 18) falcons were experimentally inoculated with different dosages of the same strain of Aspergillus fumigatus and an additional three falcons from each age group were used as uninfected control animals. Blood samples were collected prior to inoculation and at 28 days postinoculation. Of the 33 inoculated falcons, 16 demonstrated clinical signs (vomiting, greenish urates, dyspnea, ruffled feathers) commonly associated with aspergillosis and in 14 falcons necropsy revealed aspergillosis granulomas confirmed by mycology and histopathology. Positive galactomannan results were rare, with only 3/15 positive samples from adult falcons and none in the juvenile birds. Most of the inoculated falcons showed an increase of serum amyloid A (66.7%) and haptoglobin (70.4%), but fumigaclavine A was not detected in the blood from any of the experimental animals. Elevated antibody indices were detected in 96.7% of the inoculated birds, but also in 66.7% of the controls. Significant decreases in albumin:globulin ratio were obvious in 81.5% of the inoculated birds, including 100% of the birds with granulomas. Blood from falcons with granulomas demonstrated significantly increased concentration values of alpha 2 and β globulins, decreased percentages of prealbumin and albumin, and increased percentages of alpha 2 and β globulins compared to inoculated falcons without granulomas. In conclusion, acute-phase proteins and the electrophoretic profile of birds challenged with A

  18. Selective suppression of carrier-driven photochemical etching: Raman spectroscopy as a diagnostic tool

    SciTech Connect

    Ashby, C.I.H.; Myers, D.R.; Vawter, G.A.; Biefeld, R.M.; Klem, J.F.

    1990-01-01

    Carrier-driven photochemical etching of semiconductors can be selectively suppressed by altering the near-surface region to enhance carrier recombination, thereby reducing the supply of carriers that drive the surface etching reaction. Two methods for enhancing recombination and decreasing the etch rate at a given phonon flux include ion implantation and localized Zn diffusion. Raman spectroscopy can be employed to determine whether sufficient alterations of electronic properties has occurred to suppress etching. Carrier-driven photochemical reactions, which require direct participation of free carriers for the chemical reaction to proceed, can be selectively suppressed by increasing the minority carrier recombination rate, thereby reducing the supply of carriers that drive the surface etching reaction. Two methods for enhancing recombination and decreasing the etching quantum yield, which is the number of atoms removed per incident photon, include ion implantation and localized Zn diffusion. For ion implantation, recombination- promoting defect concentrations depend on ion species, fluence, and annealing both during and after the implantation process. Other recombination processes related to carrier scattering from ionized impurities from in-diffusion of dopants or following implant activation can control etching. Raman spectroscopy can be employed to detect changes in electronic properties that correlate with etching suppression. Changes that occur in the LO-phonon lineshape, such as those associated with phonon confinement and ionized impurity scattering, can be diagnostic of the carrier-driven etching behavior following a specific treatment. We have demonstrated two applications of Raman spectroscopy as a diagnostic for suppression of the carrier-driven photochemical etching of GaAs. 12 refs., 3 figs.

  19. Digital blood pressure after local cooling as a diagnostic tool in traumatic vasospastic disease.

    PubMed Central

    Ekenvall, L; Lindblad, L E

    1982-01-01

    Measurement of digital blood pressure before and after local cooling was performed in 10 men with traumatic vasospastic disease (TVD), 10 men who worked with vibrating tools but had no symptoms in arms or hands, and 10 men who had never worked with vibrating tools. The reduction in finger systolic pressure was significantly larger in the group with TVD than in either of the reference groups (p less than 0.001). There was no difference between the two reference groups. Nine of the 10 patients with TVD had a larger reduction in their finger systolic pressure after local cooling than anyone in either control group. The effects of two different room temperatures (17 degrees C and 23 degrees C) were evaluated. At the higher temperature the overlap between patients with TVD and controls was greater. The method described seems a feasible way to obtain an objective verification of TVD. PMID:7138798

  20. Anatomic pathology of hepatocellular carcinoma: histopathology using classic and new diagnostic tools.

    PubMed

    Pittman, Meredith E; Brunt, Elizabeth M

    2015-05-01

    Hepatocellular carcinoma can be diagnosed on a needle biopsy of the liver; however, uncertainty may arise because of the inherent complexity of liver histology. This article aims to provide practicing pathologists with tools for the approach to mass-directed liver biopsies clinically concerning for hepatocellular carcinoma. The examination of routine hematoxylin-eosin stains and the use of ancillary histochemical and immunohistochemical stains are discussed. Sections reviewing liver carcinoma with biphenotypic differentiation and the challenge of dysplastic nodules are included. PMID:25921661

  1. "Virtual microscopy" and the internet as telepathology consultation tools: diagnostic accuracy in evaluating melanocytic skin lesions.

    PubMed

    Okada, D H; Binder, S W; Felten, C L; Strauss, J S; Marchevsky, A M

    1999-12-01

    The Internet offers a widely available, inexpensive tool for telepathology consultations. It allows the transfer of image and text files through electronic mail (e-mail) or file transfer protocols (FTP), using a variety of microcomputer platforms. We studied the use of the Internet and "virtual microscopy" tools for the diagnosis of 35 skin biopsies, including a variety of benign and malignant melanocytic lesions. Digitized images from these lesions were obtained at 40x and 100x optical magnification, using a high resolution digital camera (Microlumina, Leaf Systems, Southborough, MA), a light microscope with a phototube adapter and a microcomputer with a Pentium 166 MHz microprocessor. Two to four images of each case were arranged on a "canvas" to represent the majority or an entire biopsy level, using Photoshop software (Adobe Systems Inc., San Jose, CA). The images were compressed using Joint Photographers Expert Group (JPEG) format. The images were then viewed on a computer video monitor in a manner that closely resembles light microscopy, including scrolling by using the "hand tool" of Photoshop and changing magnification digitally up to 4 times without visible image degradation. The image files, ranging in size from 700 kilobytes to 2.1 megabytes (average 1.6 megabytes) were attached to e-mail messages that contained clinical information, using standard Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension (MIME) protocols and sent through the Internet, for interpretation by a dermatopathologist. The consultant could open the images from the e-mail message, using Microsoft Outlook Express (Microsoft Corp., Redmond, WA) and Photoshop software, scroll them, change magnification and render a diagnosis in a manner that closely simulates light microscopy. One hundred percent concordance was obtained between the telepathology and traditional hematoxylin and eosin slide diagnoses. The Internet and relatively inexpensive "virtual microscopy" tools offer a novel technology for

  2. Modeling of low-temperature plasmas generated using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy: the ChemCam diagnostic tool on the Mars Science Laboratory Rover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colgan, James

    2016-05-01

    We report on efforts to model the low-temperature plasmas generated using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS). LIBS is a minimally invasive technique that can quickly and efficiently determine the elemental composition of a target and is employed in an extremely wide range of applications due to its ease of use and fast turnaround. In particular, LIBS is the diagnostic tool used by the ChemCam instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity. In this talk, we report on the use of the Los Alamos plasma modeling code ATOMIC to simulate LIBS plasmas, which are typically at temperatures of order 1 eV and electron densities of order 10 16 - 17 cm-3. At such conditions, these plasmas are usually in local-thermodynamic equilibrium (LTE) and normally contain neutral and singly ionized species only, which then requires that modeling must use accurate atomic structure data for the element under investigation. Since LIBS devices are often employed in a very wide range of applications, it is therefore desirable to have accurate data for most of the elements in the periodic table, ideally including actinides. Here, we discuss some recent applications of our modeling using ATOMIC that have explored the plasma physics aspects of LIBS generated plasmas, and in particular discuss the modeling of a plasma formed from a basalt sample used as a ChemCam standard1. We also highlight some of the more general atomic physics challenges that are encountered when attempting to model low-temperature plasmas. The Los Alamos National Laboratory is operated by Los Alamos National Security, LLC for the National Nuclear Security Administration of the U.S. Department of Energy under Contract No. DE-AC5206NA25396. Work performed in conjunction with D. P. Kilcrease, H. M. Johns, E. J. Judge, J. E. Barefield, R. C. Wiens, S. M. Clegg.

  3. Place of diagnostic tools in the identification of Anaerobiospirillum succiniciproducens bacteraemia.

    PubMed

    Decroix, V; Pluquet, E; Choquet, M; Ammenouche, N; Castelain, S; Guiheneuf, R

    2016-06-01

    Anaerobiospirillum succiniciproducens is a rare but potentially lethal pathogen. We report a case of A. succiniciproducens bloodstream infection in a 55-year-old man hospitalized for pelvic trauma. The strain was identified by 16sRNA sequencing after several failures of identification by MALDI-TOF MS. The strain was susceptible to beta-lactam antibiotics and ciprofloxacin, but resistant to macrolides and clindamycin. Identification tools must be improved to enhance our knowledge on this rare pathogen and to define optimal therapy. PMID:26899447

  4. Point-of-care Diagnostic Tools to Detect Circulating MicroRNAS as Biomarkers of Disease

    PubMed Central

    Vaca, Luis

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs or miRNAs are a form of small non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) of 19–22 nucleotides in length in their mature form. miRNAs are transcribed in the nucleus of all cells from large precursors, many of which have several kilobases in length. Originally identified as intracellular modulators of protein synthesis via posttranscriptional gene silencing, more recently it has been found that miRNAs can travel in extracellular human fluids inside specialized vesicles known as exosomes. We will be referring to this miRNAs as circulating microRNAs. More interestingly, the miRNA content inside exosomes changes during pathological events. In the present review we analyze the literature about circulating miRNAs and their possible use as biomarkers. Furthermore, we explore their future in point-of-care (POC) diagnostics and provide an example of a portable POC apparatus useful in the detection of circulating miRNAs. PMID:24858962

  5. High-Content Movement Analysis as a Diagnostic Tool in C. elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, Peter; Lancichinetti, Andrea; Krevitt, Leah; Amaral, Luis; Morimoto, Rick

    2013-03-01

    Many neurodegenerative diseases manifest themselves through a loss of motor control and give us information about the underlying disease. This loss of coordination is observed in humans and in the model organisms used to study neurodegeneration. In Caenorhabditis elegans, there is an extensive genetic library of strains that lack functional neuronal signaling pathways and expressing proteins associated with neurodegenerative diseases. While most of these strains have decrease motility or cause paralysis, relatively few have been screened to look for more subtle changes in motor control such as stiffness, twitching, or other changes in behavior. we use high-resolution position and posture data to automatically analyze the movement of worms from different genetic backgrounds and characterize 14 movement characteristics. By creating a quantitative mapping between the movement characterization and an online database of gene annotation, gene expression, and anatomy, we aim to predict a likely set of cellular and molecular disruptions. This work provides a proof of concept for the use of detailed movement analysis to uncover novel disruptions in certain motor control processes. Knowledge of the molecular origin of these disruptions provided by our understanding of C. elegans genetics and physiology could lead to new diagnostic and therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative disease.

  6. Relapsing Polychondritis: an Update on Pathogenesis, Clinical Features, Diagnostic Tools, and Therapeutic Perspectives.

    PubMed

    Vitale, Antonio; Sota, Jurgen; Rigante, Donato; Lopalco, Giuseppe; Molinaro, Francesco; Messina, Mario; Iannone, Florenzo; Cantarini, Luca

    2016-01-01

    Relapsing polychondritis is a rare multisystemic disease widely accepted as a complex autoimmune disorder affecting proteoglycan-rich structures and cartilaginous tissues, especially the auricular pinna, cartilage of the nose, tracheobronchial tree, eyes, and heart's connective components. The clinical spectrum may vary from intermittent inflammatory episodes leading to unesthetic structural deformities to life-threatening cardiopulmonary manifestations, such as airway collapse and valvular regurgitation. The frequent association with other rheumatologic and hematologic disorders has been extensively reported over time, contributing to define its complexity at a diagnostic and also therapeutic level. Diagnosis of relapsing polychondritis is mainly based on clinical clues, while laboratory data have only a supportive contribution. Conversely, radiology is showing a relevant role in estimating the rate of systemic involvement as well as disease activity. The present review is aimed at providing an update on scientific data reported during the last 3 years about relapsing polychondritis in terms of pathogenesis, clinical features, diagnosis, and new treatment options. PMID:26711694

  7. Raman spectroscopy: a diagnostic tool for detection of early malignant changes in the larynx

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stone, Nicholas; Stavroulaki, Pelagia; Kendall, Catherine A.; Birchall, Martin; Barr, Hugh

    2000-05-01

    The incidence of laryngeal cancer has risen progressively over the last 25 years. Early diagnosis and treatment of premalignant lesions of the larynx is vital to prevent progression to invasive squamous cell carcinoma. In the larynx, it has long been recognized that histological evidence of maturation abnormality is associated with a higher risk of transformation to malignancy. Currently, it is extremely difficult if not impossible for the clinician to ascertain the level of abnormality present without removing a biopsy sample and sending it for histopathological analysis. Inherent risks with this technique include damage to vocal chords and loss of speech quality as well as possible selection of unrepresentative biopsy samples. Raman spectroscopy, incorporated into an endoscopic system, has the potential to provide a real-time, non-invasive diagnostic technique able to detect biochemical changes that accompany abnormal pathology. Likely outcomes would be improved biopsy targeting and patient management by providing immediate result of tissue pathology. This paper demonstrates the capacity of near IR Raman spectroscopy combine with statistical data analysis techniques to discriminate between normal, dysplastic and cancerous laryngeal tissue.

  8. Circulating microRNAs as diagnostic and prognostic tools for hepatocellular carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yu-Cheng; Xu, Zhuo; Zhang, Tian-Fu; Wang, Ya-Li

    2015-01-01

    Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is an aggressive malignancy and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Conventional biomarkers exhibit poor performance in the surveillance, diagnosis, and prognosis of HCC. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of evolutionarily conserved small non-coding RNAs that are involved in the regulation of gene expression and protein translation, and they play critical roles in cell growth, differentiation, and the development of various types of cancers, including HCC. Recent evidence revealed the role of miRNAs as potential novel and ideal biomarkers for HCC. miRNAs are released to extracellular spaces, and they are extremely stable in bodily fluids, including serum or plasma, where they are packaged into various microparticles or associated with RNA-binding proteins. Numerous studies have demonstrated that circulating miRNAs have potential applications as minimally invasive biomarkers for HCC diagnosis and prognosis. The present review highlights current understanding of miRNA biogenesis and the origins and types of circulating miRNAs. We summarize recent progress in the use of circulating miRNAs as diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers for HCC. We also discuss the challenges and perspectives of the clinical utility of circulating miRNAs in HCC. PMID:26379392

  9. Digital capillaroscopy as important tool for early diagnostics of arterial hypertension

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gurfinkel, Yu. I.; Sasonko, M. L.; Priezzhev, A. V.

    2015-03-01

    The study is aimed to determine the digital capillaroscopy possibilities in early diagnostics of an arterial hypertension. A total of 123 adult persons were examined in the study. The first group consisted of 40 patients with prehypertension (BP 130-139/85-89 mm Hg). The second group included 36 patients with 1-2 stage of hypertension (mean systolic BP 152.7±12 mm Hg). Patients in both groups did not receive regular drug therapy. The group of volunteers (n=47) included healthy adults without signs of cardiovascular pathology. The capillary circulation was examined on the nailbed using the optical digital capillaroscope developed by the company "AET", Russia. Diameters of the arterial and venous segments, perivascular zone size, capillary blood velocity, the degree of arterial loops narrowing and the density of the capillary network were estimated. In patients with arterial hypertension and even in patients with prehypertension remodeling and rarefaction of capillaries and the expressed narrowing their arterial loops were manifested. The results of the study revealed the presence of abnormalities of microcirculation parameters in patients of both groups. The capillaries density in both groups of patients was significantly lower than in healthy persons. The significant narrowing of arterial loops was revealed in patients with both arterial hypertension and prehypertension, in comparison with healthy volunteers. Capillary blood velocity did not differ significantly between healthy volunteers group and the group of prehypertensive patients. However in patients with hypertension this parameter was significantly lower in comparison with control group.

  10. Diffusion tensor imaging of cervical spinal cord: A quantitative diagnostic tool in cervical spondylotic myelopathy

    PubMed Central

    Toktas, Zafer Orkun; Tanrıkulu, Bahattin; Koban, Orkun; Kilic, Turker; Konya, Deniz

    2016-01-01

    Background: Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is a novel magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique potentially able to evaluate the microscopic structural organization of white matter fibers. Aim: This study aimed to compare fractional anisotropy (FA) and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values obtained by DTI in stenotic versus nonstenotic cervical spinal segments of patients with clinical and neurological evidence of cervical spondylotic myelopathy (CSM). Materials and Methods: This prospective study included 21 patients with CSM but without T2 changes on conventional MRI. Diffusion tensor (DT) images from the stenotic and nonstenotic segments of the subjects were obtained. FA and ADC values were estimated and compared with stenotic versus nonstenotic segments. Statistical Analysis: Paired t-test was used [Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) 12.0]. Results: In the most stenotic segments, the mean FA value was significantly lower (0.4228 ± 0.1090 vs 0.6884 ± 0.0075, P < 0.001) and the mean ADC value was significantly higher (1.312 ± 0.2405 vs 0.9183 ± 0.1477, P < 0.001) when compared to nonstenotic segments. In addition, there was a negative correlation between FA and ADC values (r = 0.63, P = 0.002). Conclusions: DTI of the cervical spine seems to be a promising novel imaging modality in patients with CSM. Advances in Knowledge: DTI may offer increased diagnostic sensitivity as compared to standard MRI and enables earlier detection of the disease. PMID:27041882

  11. Laryngeal Measurements and Diagnostic Tools for Diagnosis of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

    PubMed Central

    Casado, Verónica; Navarro, Sandra M.; Alvarez, Andrés E.; Villafañe, Mercedes; Miranda, Ana; Spaans, Natalia

    2015-01-01

    PURPOSE The purpose of this study was to evaluate sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative likelihood ratios of laryngeal height, lung function, and diagnostic questionnaires for screening and diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). METHODS We undertook a cross-sectional study of 233 people aged between 40 and 75 years. Measured variables were age, sex, weight, height, body mass index, tobacco use, maximum laryngeal height, and spirometry, and we administered a COPD questionnaire and the Lung Function Questionnaire. RESULTS For laryngeal height, we found a positive likelihood ratio of 5.21, and for the Lung Function Questionnaire, we found a negative likelihood ratio of 0.10. Combining a maximum laryngeal height of ≤4 cm with Lung Function Questionnaire findings of ≤18 yielded a positive likelihood ratio of 29.06, and a negative likelihood ratio of 0.26. CONCLUSIONS The intrinsic validity of the lung function questionnaire makes it useful for screening. Combining Lung Function Questionnaire results and laryngeal height can help confirm or dismiss COPD. PMID:25583892

  12. Gene dosage methods as diagnostic tools for the identification of chromosome abnormalities.

    PubMed

    Gouas, L; Goumy, C; Véronèse, L; Tchirkov, A; Vago, P

    2008-09-01

    Cytogenetics is the part of genetics that deals with chromosomes, particularly with numerical and structural chromosome abnormalities, and their implications in congenital or acquired genetic disorders. Standard karyotyping, successfully used for the last 50 years in investigating the chromosome etiology in patients with infertility, fetal abnormalities and congenital disorders, is constrained by the limits of microscopic resolution and is not suited for the detection of subtle chromosome abnormalities. The ability to detect submicroscopic chromosomal rearrangements that lead to copy-number changes has escalated progressively in recent years with the advent of molecular cytogenetic techniques. Here, we review various gene dosage methods such as FISH, PCR-based approaches (MLPA, QF-PCR, QMPSF and real time PCR), CGH and array-CGH, that can be used for the identification and delineation of copy-number changes for diagnostic purposes. Besides comparing their relative strength and weakness, we will discuss the impact that these detection methods have on our understanding of copy number variations in the human genome and their implications in genetic counseling. PMID:18513889

  13. Metabolic Signature Profiling as a Diagnostic and Prognostic Tool in Pediatric Plasmodium falciparum Malaria

    PubMed Central

    Surowiec, Izabella; Orikiiriza, Judy; Karlsson, Elisabeth; Nelson, Maria; Bonde, Mari; Kyamanwa, Patrick; Karenzi, Ben; Bergström, Sven; Trygg, Johan; Normark, Johan

    2015-01-01

    Background. Accuracy in malaria diagnosis and staging is vital to reduce mortality and post infectious sequelae. In this study, we present a metabolomics approach to diagnostic staging of malaria infection, specifically Plasmodium falciparum infection in children. Methods. A group of 421 patients between 6 months and 6 years of age with mild and severe states of malaria with age-matched controls were included in the study, 107, 192, and 122, individuals, respectively. A multivariate design was used as basis for representative selection of 20 patients in each category. Patient plasma was subjected to gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis, and a full metabolite profile was produced from each patient. In addition, a proof-of-concept model was tested in a Plasmodium berghei in vivo model where metabolic profiles were discernible over time of infection. Results. A 2-component principal component analysis revealed that the patients could be separated into disease categories according to metabolite profiles, independently of any clinical information. Furthermore, 2 subgroups could be identified in the mild malaria cohort who we believe represent patients with divergent prognoses. Conclusions. Metabolite signature profiling could be used both for decision support in disease staging and prognostication. PMID:26110164

  14. The challenge of Clostridium difficile infection: Overview of clinical manifestations, diagnostic tools and therapeutic options.

    PubMed

    Postma, Nynke; Kiers, Dorien; Pickkers, Peter

    2015-12-01

    The most important infectious cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhoea and colitis is Clostridium difficile, which is a Gram-positive, anaerobic, spore-forming, toxin-producing bacillus. In this overview we will discuss the diagnostic and therapeutic management of patients presenting with suspected or proven C. difficile infection (CDI). The clinical spectrum varies from asymptomatic C. difficile carriers to fulminant colitis with multi-organ failure. The onset of symptoms is usually within 2 weeks after initiation of antibiotic treatment. Diagnosis is based on the combination of clinical symptoms and either a positive stool test for C. difficile toxins or endoscopic or histological findings of pseudomembranous colitis. There is no indication for treatment of asymptomatic carriers, but patients with proven CDI should be treated. Treatment consists of cessation of the provoking antibiotic treatment, secondary prevention by infection control strategies, and treatment with metronidazole or vancomycin. Treatment of recurring CDI, severe infection, the need for surgery, and novel alternative potential treatment strategies will be discussed. The concurrent increase in multiresistant colonisation and increasing numbers of asymptomatic carriers of C. difficile will lead to an increase of the situation in which patients with severe infections, treated with broad-spectrum antibiotics, will develop concurrent severe CDI. We will discuss possible therapy strategies for these patients. PMID:26612229

  15. Pyrene-functionalized oligonucleotides and locked nucleic acids (LNAs): Tools for fundamental research, diagnostics, and materials science†

    PubMed Central

    Østergaard, Michael E.; Hrdlicka, Patrick J.

    2013-01-01

    Pyrene-functionalized oligonucleotides (PFOs) are increasingly explored as tools in fundamental research, diagnostics and materials science. Their popularity is linked to the ability of pyrenes to function as polarity-sensitive and quenchable fluorophores, excimer-generating units, aromatic stacking moieties and nucleic acid duplex intercalators. These characteristics have motivated development of PFOs for detection of complementary DNA/RNA targets, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), and generation of π-arrays on nucleic acid scaffolds. This Review will highlight the physical properties and applications of PFOs that are likely to provide high degree of positional control of the chromophore in nucleic acid complexes. Particular emphasis will be placed on pyrene-functionalized Locked Nucleic Acids (LNAs) since these materials display distinctive properties such as large fluorescence quantum yields, efficient discrimination of SNPs, and recognition of mixed-sequence double stranded DNA. PMID:21487621

  16. Circulating microparticles bearing Fibrin associated with whole-body 18FDG-PET: diagnostic tools to detect paraneoplastic polymyalgia rheumatica.

    PubMed

    Mege, Diane; Cammilleri, Serge; Mundler, Olivier; Dignat-George, Françoise; Dubois, Christophe; Panicot-Dubois, Laurence; Guis, Sandrine

    2016-08-01

    Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR), a chronic inflammatory rheumatism, can be the expression of a paraneoplastic syndrome. The same clinical symptoms are frequently observed at the early stage of the benign and malignant forms. Here, our aim was to develop diagnostic tools to differentiate paraneoplastic PMR from essential PMR. We combined an 18FDG-PET and detection of circulating procoagulant microparticles (MPs), such as fibrin positive (FibMPs), by flow cytometry. Two patients with PMR and a similar profile were selected. In the two patients, the 18FDG-PET revealed a hypermetabolic focus. However, the concentrations of fibrin+/annexin+ microparticles detected were (10 times higher in one of the two patients, who was later found to have breast cancer. The association of 18FDG-PET and the detection of microparticle fibrin positives by flow cytometry allows separating essential PMR (hypermetabolism by 18FDG-PET, low FibMPs) from paraneoplastic PMR. PMID:27324631

  17. Optical property measurements as a diagnostic tool for control of materials processing in space and on Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krishnan, Shankar; Weber, J. K. Richard; Nordine, Paul C.; Schiffman, Robert A.

    1990-01-01

    A new method is described, including results, to measure, control, and follow containerless processing in ground based levitators. This technique enables instantaneous optical property measurements from a transient solid or liquid surface concurrent with true temperature measurement. This was used successfully as a diagnostic tool to follow processing of Al, Si, and Ti during electromagnetic levitation. Experiments on Al show the disappearance of the oxide (emittance 0.33) at ca. 1300 C leaving a liquid surface with an emittance of 0.06. Electromagnetic levitation of silicon shows a liquid with a constant emittance (0.2) but with a solid whose emittance decreases very rapidly with increasing temperature. Consequently, the processing of materials at high temperatures can be controlled quite well through the control of surface optical properties.

  18. System Diagnostic Builder - A rule generation tool for expert systems that do intelligent data evaluation. [applied to Shuttle Mission Simulator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nieten, Joseph; Burke, Roger

    1993-01-01

    Consideration is given to the System Diagnostic Builder (SDB), an automated knowledge acquisition tool using state-of-the-art AI technologies. The SDB employs an inductive machine learning technique to generate rules from data sets that are classified by a subject matter expert. Thus, data are captured from the subject system, classified, and used to drive the rule generation process. These rule bases are used to represent the observable behavior of the subject system, and to represent knowledge about this system. The knowledge bases captured from the Shuttle Mission Simulator can be used as black box simulations by the Intelligent Computer Aided Training devices. The SDB can also be used to construct knowledge bases for the process control industry, such as chemical production or oil and gas production.

  19. In-situ diagnostic tools for hydrogen transfer leak characterization in PEM fuel cell stacks part II: Operational applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niroumand, Amir M.; Homayouni, Hooman; DeVaal, Jake; Golnaraghi, Farid; Kjeang, Erik

    2016-08-01

    This paper describes a diagnostic tool for in-situ characterization of the rate and distribution of hydrogen transfer leaks in Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEM) fuel cell stacks. The method is based on reducing the air flow rate from a high to low value at a fixed current, while maintaining an anode overpressure. At high air flow rates, the reduction in air flow results in lower oxygen concentration in the cathode and therefore reduction in cell voltages. Once the air flow rate in each cell reaches a low value at which the cell oxygen-starves, the voltage of the corresponding cell drops to zero. However, oxygen starvation results from two processes: 1) the electrochemical oxygen reduction reaction which produces current; and 2) the chemical reaction between oxygen and the crossed over hydrogen. In this work, a diagnostic technique has been developed that accounts for the effect of the electrochemical reaction on cell voltage to identify the hydrogen leak rate and number of leaky cells in a fuel cell stack. This technique is suitable for leak characterization during fuel cell operation, as it only requires stack air flow and voltage measurements, which are readily available in an operational fuel cell system.

  20. Radio frequency diagnostics on board of Cubesat as a tool for planetary Space Weather monitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rothkaehl, H.; Morawski, M.; Szewczyk, T.

    2014-04-01

    CubeSat pico-satellite standard was developed recently to allow easy access to space for projects with limited funds. Due to relatively cheap yet professional development process, CubeSats have also great educational impact. This allows the students to learn about all crucial aspects of space engineering and project management. Since all the basic steps for developing CubeSat are similar to those performed on bigger satellites (i.e. designing, testing, operating in space), this gives possibility to develop all the necessary skills and experience for future work at space industries. Space Research Center, together with its collaborators from University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn and others, would like to design and build double unit CubeSat as an opportunity to perform scientific experiments in space together with technological demonstrators of subsystems. In order to monitor the Earth's and planetary space environment and obtain a much more complete picture of magnetosphere and ionosphere coupling and particularly waves-particle interaction in this system than those available hitherto new mission of clustered Cubesat mission can be propose. Moreover to enhance our understanding of the rich plasma physical processes that drive the Solar Terrestrial space environment, we need to increase our ability to perform multi-point measurements by means of different sensors. Therefore, new technologies radio frequency radio analyser RFA instrument will gave the possibility for diagnostics 3D electric field component (spectra and wave forms) with extremely high time resolution. Additional technological challenges regarding size, computational power and energy constraints are imposed by the design of CubeSat.

  1. Procalcitonin as a diagnostic tool in lower respiratory tract infections and tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Polzin, A; Pletz, M; Erbes, R; Raffenberg, M; Mauch, H; Wagner, S; Arndt, G; Lode, H

    2003-06-01

    The diagnostic significance of procalcitonin concentrations in lower respiratory tract infections and tuberculosis is not known. A prospective analysis was, therefore, performed in patients with acute exacerbation of chronic bronchitis (AECB), community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), hospital-acquired pneumonia (HAP) and tuberculosis and their procalcitonin levels compared with those of patients with noninfectious lung diseases (controls). In addition, standard inflammatory parameter data were collected. A prospective clinical study was performed with four different groups of patients and a control group that consisted of patients with noninfectious lung diseases. A total of 129 patients were included: 25 with HAP, 26 CAP, 26 AECB, 27 tuberculosis, and 25 controls. C-reactive protein level, blood cell counts and procalcitonin concentration were evaluated on the first day after onset of clinical and inflammatory symptoms prior to treatment. The median procalcitonin concentrations in HAP, CAP, AECB and tuberculosis were not elevated in relation to the cut-off level of 0.5 ng x mL(-1). In the HAP group, in four of five patients who subsequently died, procalcitonin concentrations of >0.5 ng x mL(-1) were found. In acute lower respiratory infections, such as HAP, CAP and AECB, significantly elevated levels were found in comparison to the control group, but below the usual cut-off level. No differences were observed between tuberculosis and the control group. Relative to the current cut-off level of 0.5 ng x mL(-1), procalcitonin concentration is not a useful parameter for diagnosis of lower respiratory tract infections. However, compared to the control group, there were significantly elevated levels in patients with hospital-acquired pneumonia, community-acquired pneumonia and acute exacerbation of chronic bronchitis below the current cut-off level, which should be further investigated. PMID:12797485

  2. Algorithms for optimized maximum entropy and diagnostic tools for analytic continuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergeron, Dominic; Tremblay, A.-M. S.

    2016-08-01

    Analytic continuation of numerical data obtained in imaginary time or frequency has become an essential part of many branches of quantum computational physics. It is, however, an ill-conditioned procedure and thus a hard numerical problem. The maximum-entropy approach, based on Bayesian inference, is the most widely used method to tackle that problem. Although the approach is well established and among the most reliable and efficient ones, useful developments of the method and of its implementation are still possible. In addition, while a few free software implementations are available, a well-documented, optimized, general purpose, and user-friendly software dedicated to that specific task is still lacking. Here we analyze all aspects of the implementation that are critical for accuracy and speed and present a highly optimized approach to maximum entropy. Original algorithmic and conceptual contributions include (1) numerical approximations that yield a computational complexity that is almost independent of temperature and spectrum shape (including sharp Drude peaks in broad background, for example) while ensuring quantitative accuracy of the result whenever precision of the data is sufficient, (2) a robust method of choosing the entropy weight α that follows from a simple consistency condition of the approach and the observation that information- and noise-fitting regimes can be identified clearly from the behavior of χ2 with respect to α , and (3) several diagnostics to assess the reliability of the result. Benchmarks with test spectral functions of different complexity and an example with an actual physical simulation are presented. Our implementation, which covers most typical cases for fermions, bosons, and response functions, is available as an open source, user-friendly software.

  3. Potential application of miRNAs as diagnostic and therapeutic tools in chronic pancreatitis

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Liang-Hao; Ji, Jun-Tao; Li, Zhao-Shen

    2015-01-01

    Chronic pancreatitis (CP) is a progressive inflammatory disease typified by end-stage fibrosis. This disease can also increase the risk of pancreatic cancer. The associated diagnosis, pain and other complications further add to the burden of disease management. In recent years, significant progress has been achieved in identifying miRNAs and their physiological functions, including mRNA repression and protein expression control. Given the extensive effort made on miRNA research, a close correlation has been discovered between certain types of miRNAs and disease progression, particularly for tissue fibrosis. Designing miRNA-related tools for disease diagnosis and therapeutic treatments presents a novel and potential research frontier. In the current review, we discuss various miRNAs closely interacting with CP, as well as the possible development of targeted miRNA therapies in managing this disease. PMID:26149296

  4. Pathogenesis of cerebral malaria: new diagnostic tools, biomarkers, and therapeutic approaches

    PubMed Central

    Sahu, Praveen K.; Satpathi, Sanghamitra; Behera, Prativa K.; Mishra, Saroj K.; Mohanty, Sanjib; Wassmer, Samuel Crocodile

    2015-01-01

    Cerebral malaria is a severe neuropathological complication of Plasmodium falciparum infection. It results in high mortality and post-recovery neuro-cognitive disorders in children, even after appropriate treatment with effective anti-parasitic drugs. While the complete landscape of the pathogenesis of cerebral malaria still remains to be elucidated, numerous innovative approaches have been developed in recent years in order to improve the early detection of this neurological syndrome and, subsequently, the clinical care of affected patients. In this review, we briefly summarize the current understanding of cerebral malaria pathogenesis, compile the array of new biomarkers and tools available for diagnosis and research, and describe the emerging therapeutic approaches to tackle this pathology effectively. PMID:26579500

  5. New generation of medium wattage metal halide lamps and spectroscopic tools for their diagnostics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunaevsky, A.; Tu, J.; Gibson, R.; Steere, T.; Graham, K.; van der Eyden, J.

    2010-11-01

    A new generation of ceramic metal halide high intensity discharge (HID) lamps has achieved high efficiencies by implementing new design concepts. The shape of the ceramic burner is optimized to withstand high temperatures with minimal thermal stress. Corrosion processes with the ceramic walls are slowed down via adoption of non-aggressive metal halide chemistry. Light losses over life due to tungsten deposition on the walls are minimized by maintaining a self-cleaning chemical process, known as tungsten cycle. All these advancements have made the new ceramic metal halide lamps comparable to high pressure sodium lamps for luminous efficacy, life, and maintenance while providing white light with high color rendering. Direct replacement of quartz metal halide lamps and systems results in the energy saving from 18 up to 50%. High resolution spectroscopy remains the major non-destructive tool for the ceramic metal halide lamps. Approaches to reliable measurements of relative partial pressures of the arc species are discussed.

  6. Detection of collagen by second harmonic microscopy as a diagnostic tool for liver fibrosis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banavar, Maruth; Kable, Eleanor P. W.; Braet, Filip; Wang, X. M.; Gorrell, M. D.; Cox, Guy

    2006-02-01

    Liver fibrosis has many causes, including hepatitis C, alcohol abuse, and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. It is characterized by abnormal deposition of extracellular matrix proteins, mainly collagen. The deposition of these proteins results in impaired liver function caused by distortion of the hepatic architecture by fibrous scar tissue. The unique triple helix structure of collagen and high level of crystallinity make it very efficient for generating second harmonic signals. In this study we have set out to see if second harmonic imaging of collagen can be used as a non-biased quantitative tool for classification of fibrosis levels in liver biopsies and if it can detect early fibrosis formation not detected by current methods.

  7. Novel Diagnostic and Monitoring Tools in Stroke: an Individualized Patient-Centered Precision Medicine Approach.

    PubMed

    de Villiers, Sulette; Swanepoel, Albe; Bester, Janette; Pretorius, Etheresia

    2016-05-01

    Central to the pathogenesis of ischaemic stroke are the normally protective processes of platelet adhesion and activation. Experimental evidence has shown that the ligand-receptor interactions in ischaemic stroke represent a thrombo-inflammatory cascade, which presents research opportunities into new treatment. However, as anti-platelet drugs have the potential to cause severe side effects in ischaemic stroke patients (as well as other vascular disease patients), it is important to carefully monitor the risk of bleeding and risk of thrombus in patients receiving treatment. Because thrombo-embolic ischaemic stroke is a major health issue, we suggest that the answer to adequate treatment is based on an individualized patient-centered approach, inline with the latest NIH precision medicine approach. A combination of viscoelastic methodologies may be used in a personalized patient-centered regime, including thromboelastography (TEG®) and the lesser used scanning electron microscopy approach (SEM). Thromboelastography provides a dynamic measure of clot formation, strength, and lysis, whereas SEM is a visual structural tool to study patient fibrin structure in great detail. Therefore, we consider the evidence for TEG® and SEM as unique means to confirm stroke diagnosis, screen at-risk patients, and monitor treatment efficacy. Here we argue that the current approach to stroke treatment needs to be restructured and new innovative thought patterns need to be applied, as even approved therapies require close patient monitoring to determine efficacy, match treatment regimens to each patient's individual needs, and assess the risk of dangerous adverse effects. TEG® and SEM have the potential to be a useful tool and could potentially alter the clinical approach to managing ischaemic stroke. As envisaged in the NIH precision medicine approach, this will involve a number of role players and innovative new research ideas, with benefits that will ultimately only be realized in a

  8. Diagnostic tools for assessment of urinary dysfunction in MS patients without urinary disturbances.

    PubMed

    Ghezzi, A; Mutta, E; Bianchi, F; Bonavita, S; Buttari, F; Caramma, A; Cavarretta, R; Centonze, D; Coghe, G C; Coniglio, G; Del Carro, U; Ferrò, M T; Marrosu, M G; Patti, F; Rovaris, M; Sparaco, M; Simone, I; Tortorella, C; Bergamaschi, R

    2016-03-01

    Many guidelines are available for the management of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTSs) in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients, but no agreement exists on the best approach for subjects without LUTSs. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether LUTSs can be detected in MS patients asymptomatic for urinary dysfunction, comparing three different tools [measure of post-void residual volume (PRV), bladder diary (BD), a focused questionnaire (IPSS)], and whether disability, disease duration and signs of pyramidal involvement are linked to their subclinical presence. 178 MS patients (118 women) have been included (mean age 41.2 years, mean disease duration 11.3 years, mean EDSS 2.2), and tested with the above-mentioned tools. PRV was abnormal in 14 subjects (7.8 %), associated to abnormal findings at IPSS in 3 cases, at BD in 2 cases, at both in 1. BD was abnormal in 37 subjects (20.8 %), with concomitant abnormal PRV in 2, abnormal IPSS in 10 cases, abnormal IPSS and BD in 1. IPSS was ≥ 9 in 43 subjects (24.1 %). At least one test was abnormal in 76 patients (42.7 %): 1 in 57 patients (32.0 %), 2 in 17 (9.5 %), and 3 tests in 2 (1.1 %). Patients with at least one abnormal urinary variable, compared to patients without urinary abnormalities, had a more frequent pyramidal involvement (69.5 vs. 16.8 %, χ (2) = 48.6, p < 0.00001), a more frequent occurrence of EDSS ≥2 (83.1 vs. 23.5 %, χ (2) = 56.9, p < 0.00001), and a longer disease duration (15.7 ± 7.3 vs. 9.1 ± 7.1, t = 5.7, p < 0.00001). Asymptomatic LUTS were frequent but none of the tests used permitted to better identify asymptomatic patients. PMID:26613723

  9. Physical Exercise as a Diagnostic, Rehabilitation, and Preventive Tool: Influence on Neuroplasticity and Motor Recovery after Stroke

    PubMed Central

    Pin-Barre, Caroline; Laurin, Jérôme

    2015-01-01

    Stroke remains a leading cause of adult motor disabilities in the world and accounts for the greatest number of hospitalizations for neurological disease. Stroke treatments/therapies need to promote neuroplasticity to improve motor function. Physical exercise is considered as a major candidate for ultimately promoting neural plasticity and could be used for different purposes in human and animal experiments. First, acute exercise could be used as a diagnostic tool to understand new neural mechanisms underlying stroke physiopathology. Indeed, better knowledge of stroke mechanisms that affect movements is crucial for enhancing treatment/rehabilitation effectiveness. Secondly, it is well established that physical exercise training is advised as an effective rehabilitation tool. Indeed, it reduces inflammatory processes and apoptotic marker expression, promotes brain angiogenesis and expression of some growth factors, and improves the activation of affected muscles during exercise. Nevertheless, exercise training might also aggravate sensorimotor deficits and brain injury depending on the chosen exercise parameters. For the last few years, physical training has been combined with pharmacological treatments to accentuate and/or accelerate beneficial neural and motor effects. Finally, physical exercise might also be considered as a major nonpharmacological preventive strategy that provides neuroprotective effects reducing adverse effects of brain ischemia. Therefore, prestroke regular physical activity may also decrease the motor outcome severity of stroke. PMID:26682073

  10. Third Harmonic Generation microscopy as a diagnostic tool for the investigation of microglia BV-2 and breast cancer cells activation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gavgiotaki, E.; Filippidis, G.; Psilodimitrakopoulos, S.; Markomanolaki, H.; Kalognomou, M.; Agelaki, S.; Georgoulias, V.; Athanassakis, I.

    2015-07-01

    Nonlinear optical imaging techniques have created new opportunities of research in the biomedical field. Specifically, Third Harmonic Generation (THG) seems to be a suitable noninvasive imaging tool for the delineation and quantification of biological structures at the microscopic level. The aim of this study was to extract information as to the activation state of different cell types by using the THG imaging microscopy as a diagnostic tool. BV-2 microglia cell line was used as a representative biological model enabling the study of resting and activated state of the cells linked to various pathological conditions. Third Harmonic Generation (THG) and Two Photon Excitation Fluorescence (TPEF) measurements were simultaneously collected from stained breast cancer cells, by employing a single homemade experimental apparatus and it was shown that high THG signals mostly arise from lipid bodies. Continuously, BV-2 microglia cells were examined with or without activation by lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in order to discriminate between control and activated cells based on the quantification of THG signals. Statistically quantification was accomplished in both mean area and mean intensity values of THG. The values for mean total area and mean THG intensity values have been increased in activated versus the non-activated cells. Similar studies of quantification are underway in breast cancer cells for the exact discrimination on different cell lines. Furthermore, laser polarization dependence of SHG and THG signal in unstained biological samples is investigated.

  11. Characterizing the intrinsic bioremediation potential of 1,4-dioxane and trichloroethene using innovative environmental diagnostic tools.

    PubMed

    Chiang, Sheau-Yun Dora; Mora, Rebecca; Diguiseppi, William H; Davis, Greg; Sublette, Kerry; Gedalanga, Phillip; Mahendra, Shaily

    2012-09-01

    An intrinsic biodegradation study involving the design and implementation of innovative environmental diagnostic tools was conducted to evaluate whether monitored natural attenuation (MNA) could be considered as part of the remedial strategy to treat an aerobic aquifer contaminated with 1,4-dioxane and trichloroethene (TCE). In this study, advanced molecular biological and stable isotopic tools were applied to confirm in situ intrinsic biodegradation of 1,4-dioxane and TCE. Analyses of Bio-Trap® samplers and groundwater samples collected from monitoring wells verified the abundance of bacteria and enzymes capable of aerobically degrading TCE and 1,4-dioxane. Furthermore, phospholipid fatty acid analysis with stable isotope probes (PLFA-SIP) of the microbial community validated the ability for microbial degradation of TCE and 1,4-dioxane. Compound specific isotope analysis (CSIA) of groundwater samples for TCE resulted in δ(13)C values that indicated likely biodegradation of TCE in three of the four monitoring wells sampled. Results of the MNA evaluation showed that enzymes capable of aerobically degrading TCE and 1,4-dioxane were present, abundant, and active in the aquifer. Taken together, these results provide direct evidence of the occurrence of TCE and 1,4-dioxane biodegradation at the study site, supporting the selection of MNA as part of the final remedy at some point in the future. PMID:22825917

  12. BeeDoctor, a versatile MLPA-based diagnostic tool for screening bee viruses.

    PubMed

    De Smet, Lina; Ravoet, Jorgen; de Miranda, Joachim R; Wenseleers, Tom; Mueller, Matthias Y; Moritz, Robin F A; de Graaf, Dirk C

    2012-01-01

    The long-term decline of managed honeybee hives in the world has drawn significant attention to the scientific community and bee-keeping industry. A high pathogen load is believed to play a crucial role in this phenomenon, with the bee viruses being key players. Most of the currently characterized honeybee viruses (around twenty) are positive stranded RNA viruses. Techniques based on RNA signatures are widely used to determine the viral load in honeybee colonies. High throughput screening for viral loads necessitates the development of a multiplex polymerase chain reaction approach in which different viruses can be targeted simultaneously. A new multiparameter assay, called "BeeDoctor", was developed based on multiplex-ligation probe dependent amplification (MLPA) technology. This assay detects 10 honeybee viruses in one reaction. "BeeDoctor" is also able to screen selectively for either the positive strand of the targeted RNA bee viruses or the negative strand, which is indicative for active viral replication. Due to its sensitivity and specificity, the MLPA assay is a useful tool for rapid diagnosis, pathogen characterization, and epidemiology of viruses in honeybee populations. "BeeDoctor" was used for screening 363 samples from apiaries located throughout Flanders; the northern half of Belgium. Using the "BeeDoctor", virus infections were detected in almost eighty percent of the colonies, with deformed wing virus by far the most frequently detected virus and multiple virus infections were found in 26 percent of the colonies. PMID:23144717

  13. BeeDoctor, a Versatile MLPA-Based Diagnostic Tool for Screening Bee Viruses

    PubMed Central

    De Smet, Lina; Ravoet, Jorgen; de Miranda, Joachim R.; Wenseleers, Tom; Mueller, Matthias Y.; Moritz, Robin F. A.; de Graaf, Dirk C.

    2012-01-01

    The long-term decline of managed honeybee hives in the world has drawn significant attention to the scientific community and bee-keeping industry. A high pathogen load is believed to play a crucial role in this phenomenon, with the bee viruses being key players. Most of the currently characterized honeybee viruses (around twenty) are positive stranded RNA viruses. Techniques based on RNA signatures are widely used to determine the viral load in honeybee colonies. High throughput screening for viral loads necessitates the development of a multiplex polymerase chain reaction approach in which different viruses can be targeted simultaneously. A new multiparameter assay, called “BeeDoctor”, was developed based on multiplex-ligation probe dependent amplification (MLPA) technology. This assay detects 10 honeybee viruses in one reaction. “BeeDoctor” is also able to screen selectively for either the positive strand of the targeted RNA bee viruses or the negative strand, which is indicative for active viral replication. Due to its sensitivity and specificity, the MLPA assay is a useful tool for rapid diagnosis, pathogen characterization, and epidemiology of viruses in honeybee populations. “BeeDoctor” was used for screening 363 samples from apiaries located throughout Flanders; the northern half of Belgium. Using the “BeeDoctor”, virus infections were detected in almost eighty percent of the colonies, with deformed wing virus by far the most frequently detected virus and multiple virus infections were found in 26 percent of the colonies. PMID:23144717

  14. Mitochondrial DNA methylation as a next-generation biomarker and diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    Iacobazzi, Vito; Castegna, Alessandra; Infantino, Vittoria; Andria, Generoso

    2013-01-01

    Recent expansion of our knowledge on epigenetic changes strongly suggests that not only nuclear DNA (nDNA), but also mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) may be subjected to epigenetic modifications related to disease development, environmental exposure, drug treatment and aging. Thus, mtDNA methylation is attracting increasing attention as a potential biomarker for the detection and diagnosis of diseases and the understanding of cellular behavior in particular conditions. In this paper we review the current advances in mtDNA methylation studies with particular attention to the evidences of mtDNA methylation changes in diseases and physiological conditions so far investigated. Technological advances for the analysis of epigenetic variations are promising tools to provide insights into methylation of mtDNA with similar resolution levels as those reached for nDNA. However, many aspects related to mtDNA methylation are still unclear. More studies are needed to understand whether and how changes in mtDNA methylation patterns, global and gene specific, are associated to diseases or risk factors. PMID:23920043

  15. Anti-Müllerian hormone as a diagnostic tool for ovarian remnant syndrome in bitches.

    PubMed

    Turna Yilmaz, Özge; Toydemir, Tuğba Seval Fatma; Kirsan, Ismail; Gunay Ucmak, Zeynep; Caliskan Karacam, Esra

    2015-09-01

    Ovariohysterectomy is a surgical procedure performed for sterilization. If part or all of an ovary remains after the surgical procedure, ovarian remnant syndrome (ORS) occurs. After revascularization of the remaining ovarian tissue, the sexual cycle of bitches and queens continues. The aim of this study was to investigate the usefulness of serum anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) measurement for the diagnosis of ORS in bitches. Forty-six female dogs were divided into four groups: the prepubertal, unspayed, spayed, and ORS groups. The serum AMH, progesterone, and estradiol concentrations of the bitches in all groups were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The stage in the sexual cycle of each bitch was determined based on vaginal cytology findings and serum estradiol and progesterone levels. The mean serum AMH concentration of the unspayed bitches (4.26 ± 0.82 ng/ml) was similar to that of the bitches with ORS (4.40 ± 1.09 ng/ml). However, the difference between the mean serum AMH level of the bitches with ORS and the spayed bitches (0.28 ± 0.09 ng/ml) was significant. In conclusion, the present study has demonstrated that the serum AMH level is substantially lower in spayed than in both intact bitches and bitches with ORS. According to this result, measurement of the serum AMH level is a useful tool for diagnosis of ORS in bitches. PMID:26099303

  16. Bioimpedance Harmonic Analysis as a Diagnostic Tool to Assess Regional Circulation and Neural Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mudraya, I. S.; Revenko, S. V.; Khodyreva, L. A.; Markosyan, T. G.; Dudareva, A. A.; Ibragimov, A. R.; Romich, V. V.; Kirpatovsky, V. I.

    2013-04-01

    The novel technique based on harmonic analysis of bioimpedance microvariations with original hard- and software complex incorporating a high-resolution impedance converter was used to assess the neural activity and circulation in human urinary bladder and penis in patients with pelvic pain, erectile dysfunction, and overactive bladder. The therapeutic effects of shock wave therapy and Botulinum toxin detrusor injections were evaluated quantitatively according to the spectral peaks at low 0.1 Hz frequency (M for Mayer wave), respiratory (R) and cardiac (C) rhythms with their harmonics. Enhanced baseline regional neural activity identified according to M and R peaks was found to be presumably sympathetic in pelvic pain patients, and parasympathetic - in patients with overactive bladder. Total pulsatile activity and pulsatile resonances found in the bladder as well as in the penile spectrum characterised regional circulation and vascular tone. The abnormal spectral parameters characteristic of the patients with genitourinary diseases shifted to the norm in the cases of efficient therapy. Bioimpedance harmonic analysis seems to be a potent tool to assess regional peculiarities of circulatory and autonomic nervous activity in the course of patient treatment.

  17. Application of Infrared Thermography as a Diagnostic Tool of Knee Osteoarthritis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arfaoui, Ahlem; Bouzid, Mohamed Amine; Pron, Hervé; Taiar, Redha; Polidori, Guillaume

    This paper aimed to study the feasibility of application of infrared thermography to detect osteoarthritis of the knee and to compare the distribution of skin temperature between participants with osteoarthritis and those without pathology. All tests were conducted at LACM (Laboratory of Mechanical Stresses Analysis) and the gymnasium of the University of Reims Champagne Ardennes. IR thermography was performed using an IR camera. Ten participants with knee osteoarthritis and 12 reference healthy participants without OA participated in this study. Questionnaires were also used. The participants with osteoarthritis of the knee were selected on clinical examination and a series of radiographs. The level of pain was recorded by using a simple verbal scale (0-4). Infrared thermography reveals relevant disease by highlighting asymmetrical behavior in thermal color maps of both knees. Moreover, a linear evolution of skin temperature in the knee area versus time has been found whatever the participant group is in the first stage following a given effort. Results clearly show that the temperature can be regarded as a key parameter for evaluating pain. Thermal images of the knee were taken with an infrared camera. The study shows that with the advantage of being noninvasive and easily repeatable, IRT appears to be a useful tool to detect quantifiable patterns of surface temperatures and predict the singular thermal behavior of this pathology. It also seems that this non-intrusive technique enables to detect the early clinical manifestations of knee OA.

  18. Direct Blood Dry LAMP: A Rapid, Stable, and Easy Diagnostic Tool for Human African Trypanosomiasis

    PubMed Central

    Hayashida, Kyoko; Kajino, Kiichi; Hachaambwa, Lottie; Namangala, Boniface; Sugimoto, Chihiro

    2015-01-01

    Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) is a rapid and sensitive tool used for the diagnosis of a variety of infectious diseases. One of the advantages of this method over the polymerase chain reaction is that DNA amplification occurs at a constant temperature, usually between 60–65°C; therefore, expensive devices are unnecessary for this step. However, LAMP still requires complicated sample preparation steps and a well-equipped laboratory to produce reliable and reproducible results, which limits its use in resource-poor laboratories in most developing countries. In this study, we made several substantial modifications to the technique to carry out on-site diagnosis of Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) in remote areas using LAMP. The first essential improvement was that LAMP reagents were dried and stabilized in a single tube by incorporating trehalose as a cryoprotectant to prolong shelf life at ambient temperature. The second technical improvement was achieved by simplifying the sample preparation step so that DNA or RNA could be amplified directly from detergent-lysed blood samples. With these modifications, diagnosis of HAT in local clinics or villages in endemic areas becomes a reality, which could greatly impact on the application of diagnosis not only for HAT but also for other tropical diseases. PMID:25769046

  19. Diagnostic tool for red blood cell membrane disorders: Assessment of a new generation ektacytometer.

    PubMed

    Da Costa, Lydie; Suner, Ludovic; Galimand, Julie; Bonnel, Amandine; Pascreau, Tiffany; Couque, Nathalie; Fenneteau, Odile; Mohandas, Narla

    2016-01-01

    Inherited red blood cell (RBC) membrane disorders, such as hereditary spherocytosis, elliptocytosis and hereditary ovalocytosis, result from mutations in genes encoding various RBC membrane and skeletal proteins. The RBC membrane, a composite structure composed of a lipid bilayer linked to a spectrin/actin-based membrane skeleton, confers upon the RBC unique features of deformability and mechanical stability. The disease severity is primarily dependent on the extent of membrane surface area loss. RBC membrane disorders can be readily diagnosed by various laboratory approaches that include RBC cytology, flow cytometry, ektacytometry, electrophoresis of RBC membrane proteins and genetics. The reference technique for diagnosis of RBC membrane disorders is the osmotic gradient ektacytometry. However, in spite of its recognition as the reference technique, this technique is rarely used as a routine diagnosis tool for RBC membrane disorders due to its limited availability. This may soon change as a new generation of ektacytometer has been recently engineered. In this review, we describe the workflow of the samples shipped to our Hematology laboratory for RBC membrane disorder analysis and the data obtained for a large cohort of French patients presenting with RBC membrane disorders using a newly available version of the ektacytomer. PMID:26603718

  20. Transcranial sonography in movement disorders: an interesting tool for diagnostic perspectives.

    PubMed

    Sanzaro, E; Iemolo, F

    2016-03-01

    Transcranial sonography has become an important tool for the diagnosis of various movement disorders. In most patients with idiopathic Parkinson disease, a markedly hyperechogenic substantia nigra (SN) was detected on at least one side. We have highlighted the sonographic features that might help the differential diagnosis of PD and other movement disorders. Our investigation involved 30 patients (age 45-85 years) with idiopathic Parkinson disease, 2 multiple system atrophy, 3 progressive supranuclear palsy and 2 patients with restless legs syndrome. In accordance with several previous studies, we detected hyperechogenicity of the SN by TCS in 90 % of patients with idiopathic Parkinson disease. Subjects with a marked severity disease had a larger extent of the hyperechogenic SN signal. All progressive supranuclear palsy patients had an enlarged third ventricle and, in two cases, we observed the presence of hyperechoic areas in the lentiform nucleus. This last ultrasonographic feature was also seen in our patients with multiple system atrophy. TCS abnormalities of the SN, midbrain raphe and basal ganglia are characteristics of several movement and affective disorders. These features are less easily detected by other techniques, such as CT and MRI, which enable the exclusion of structural lesions, such as tumours and multi-infarct disease, because the physical principle differs from other imaging methods. PMID:26650802

  1. Tools for Evaluating Fault Detection and Diagnostic Methods for HVAC Secondary Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pourarian, Shokouh

    Although modern buildings are using increasingly sophisticated energy management and control systems that have tremendous control and monitoring capabilities, building systems routinely fail to perform as designed. More advanced building control, operation, and automated fault detection and diagnosis (AFDD) technologies are needed to achieve the goal of net-zero energy commercial buildings. Much effort has been devoted to develop such technologies for primary heating ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, and some secondary systems. However, secondary systems, such as fan coil units and dual duct systems, although widely used in commercial, industrial, and multifamily residential buildings, have received very little attention. This research study aims at developing tools that could provide simulation capabilities to develop and evaluate advanced control, operation, and AFDD technologies for these less studied secondary systems. In this study, HVACSIM+ is selected as the simulation environment. Besides developing dynamic models for the above-mentioned secondary systems, two other issues related to the HVACSIM+ environment are also investigated. One issue is the nonlinear equation solver used in HVACSIM+ (Powell's Hybrid method in subroutine SNSQ). It has been found from several previous research projects (ASRHAE RP 825 and 1312) that SNSQ is especially unstable at the beginning of a simulation and sometimes unable to converge to a solution. Another issue is related to the zone model in the HVACSIM+ library of components. Dynamic simulation of secondary HVAC systems unavoidably requires an interacting zone model which is systematically and dynamically interacting with building surrounding. Therefore, the accuracy and reliability of the building zone model affects operational data generated by the developed dynamic tool to predict HVAC secondary systems function. The available model does not simulate the impact of direct solar radiation that enters a zone

  2. Tools for Evaluating Fault Detection and Diagnostic Methods for HVAC Secondary Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pourarian, Shokouh

    Although modern buildings are using increasingly sophisticated energy management and control systems that have tremendous control and monitoring capabilities, building systems routinely fail to perform as designed. More advanced building control, operation, and automated fault detection and diagnosis (AFDD) technologies are needed to achieve the goal of net-zero energy commercial buildings. Much effort has been devoted to develop such technologies for primary heating ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, and some secondary systems. However, secondary systems, such as fan coil units and dual duct systems, although widely used in commercial, industrial, and multifamily residential buildings, have received very little attention. This research study aims at developing tools that could provide simulation capabilities to develop and evaluate advanced control, operation, and AFDD technologies for these less studied secondary systems. In this study, HVACSIM+ is selected as the simulation environment. Besides developing dynamic models for the above-mentioned secondary systems, two other issues related to the HVACSIM+ environment are also investigated. One issue is the nonlinear equation solver used in HVACSIM+ (Powell's Hybrid method in subroutine SNSQ). It has been found from several previous research projects (ASRHAE RP 825 and 1312) that SNSQ is especially unstable at the beginning of a simulation and sometimes unable to converge to a solution. Another issue is related to the zone model in the HVACSIM+ library of components. Dynamic simulation of secondary HVAC systems unavoidably requires an interacting zone model which is systematically and dynamically interacting with building surrounding. Therefore, the accuracy and reliability of the building zone model affects operational data generated by the developed dynamic tool to predict HVAC secondary systems function. The available model does not simulate the impact of direct solar radiation that enters a zone

  3. Fluorescence: a diagnostic tool for the detection of stress in plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chappelle, Emmett W.; Corp, Lawrence A.; McMurtrey, James E., III; Kim, Moon S.; Daughtry, Craig S. T.

    1997-01-01

    Green vegetation when excited by specific wavelengths of light dissipates a portion of the absorbed energy as light emissions in the form of fluorescence in several broad areas of the spectrum. Currently, leaf level fluoresence emissions have been broken down into five primary regions, namely; ultraviolet (UV), blue, green, red, and near-infrared (NIR). The optimal excitation wavelengths for each of these bands was verified for healthy soybean leaves through the use of the EEM. Intact vegetation when excited at 280 nm emits substantial fluorescence in two bands; the first centered near 335 nm, and the second centered near 440 nm. UV band fluorescence from vegetation treated with varying levels of nitrogen decreases relative to the blur fluorescence as a function of total protein concentration. These studies indicate that in vivo UV band fluorescence can be utilized as a non-destructive tool to remotely sense variations in protein concentration due to nitrogen fertilization level. It has been well established that this fluorescence emission originates from proteins contain aromatic amino acids. The majority of plant proteins contain these amino acids and as a result have the potential to fluorescence in the region of the spectrum discussed here. Pure ribulose 1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase in aqueous solution exhibited intense UV fluorescence characteristics with excitation and emission distributions similar to those of intact vegetation. Due to its high concentration we believe this protein contributes to the UV band fluorescence emanating from the intact leaf. The red and NIR fluorescence emissions can be excited within the broad wavelength region from 250 to 675 nm with excitation maxima at 430 nm, 470 nm, 600 nm, and 660 nm. The ratio of red to NIR fluorescence excitation spectra produces a ratio spectrum which exhibits striking similarities to the action spectrum of photosynthesis. The relative differences between these two emission bands depend on the wavelength

  4. Immunoassay for ethyl glucuronide in vitreous humor: a new tool for postmortem diagnostics of alcohol use.

    PubMed

    Rainio, Juha; Kultti, Johanna; Kangastupa, Päivikki; Tuomi, Heidi; Ahola, Sanna; Karhunen, Pekka J; Helander, Anders; Niemelä, Onni

    2013-03-10

    Although excessive alcohol consumption plays a major role in fatal events, the role of alcohol use as a possible contributing factor at the time of death is not easy to establish due to lack of suitable biomarkers for postmortem analyses. We used an immunological approach to measure ethyl glucuronide (EtG) concentrations from vitreous humor (VH) and serum from 58 individuals representing a forensic autopsy population of cases with either a well-documented history of excessive alcohol use (n=37) or cases without such history (n=21), according to medical and police records and blood alcohol determinations (BAC). The immunoassay was based on the Microgenics DRI-EtG EIA reagents applied on an automated Abbott Architect c8000 clinical chemistry analyzer. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) determination of EtG and ethyl sulfate (EtS) was used as a reference method. At a cut-off of 0.3mg/l for VH-EtG, the immunoassay correctly identified 92% of the cases with a history of excessive alcohol use, whereas the BAC was positive (cut-off 10mg/dl) in 68% of the cases. A significant correlation emerged between VH-EtG and serum EtG (r=0.77, p<0.001) and between VH-EtG and BAC (r=0.62, p<0.001), although VH-EtG was frequently elevated also in cases with no detectable BAC. The EtG immunoassay showed a strong correlation with the LC-MS/MS reference method (r=0.94, p<0.001) and there was 100% agreement in the frequency of marker positive and negative findings between the immunoassay EtG results and the LC-MS/MS analysis of EtG and EtS. The present data indicate that the immunoassay for VH-EtG is a useful forensic tool for screening of antemortem alcohol use. PMID:23415594

  5. A review on epilepsy in the horse and the potential of Ambulatory EEG as a diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    van der Ree, Marleen; Wijnberg, Inge

    2012-01-01

    Epilepsy in the horse is diagnosed based on clinical signs, but diagnosing can be difficult if a grand mal is not present. The future prospects of the horse and potentially the safety of the owner depend on an accurate diagnosis. This review presents information on epilepsy and focuses on the diagnostic potential of (Ambulatory) electroencephalography ((A) EEG). An epileptic seizure is a brain disorder, which expresses itself as a recurrent episode of involuntary abnormal behaviour. The aetiology can originate from inside or outside the brain or is idiopathic. Besides those categories, seizures can be classified as generalised or partial. A typical generalised tonic-clonic seizure is characterised by the prodrome, the ictus and the post-ictal phase. EEG is the graphic recording of rhythmic bioelectric activity which originates predominantly from the cerebral cortex. In human medicine, the 10/20 international basis system for electrode placement is used. This makes comparison more reliable and consistent. The normal human brainwaves recorded are alpha, beta, theta and delta waves. In the horse, fewer descriptions of normal signals are available. In humans suffering from epilepsy, spikes, complexes, spike-and-wave discharges and rhythmical multi-spike activity are seen. In horses suffering from epilepsy, spikes, sharp waves and spike-and-wave discharges are seen. In humans, AEEG has numerous advantages above short-duration EEG in diagnosing epilepsy or intracranial pathology. In future, AEEG might be useful to record brain signals in awake horses expressing their behaviour under natural circumstances. PMID:23163553

  6. Co-Development of Diagnostic Vectors to Support Targeted Therapies and Theranostics: Essential Tools in Personalized Cancer Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Nicolaides, Nicholas C.; O’Shannessy, Daniel J.; Albone, Earl; Grasso, Luigi

    2014-01-01

    Novel technologies are being developed to improve patient therapy through the identification of targets and surrogate molecular signatures that can help direct appropriate treatment regimens for efficacy and drug safety. This is particularly the case in oncology whereby patient tumor and biofluids are routinely isolated and analyzed for genetic, immunohistochemical, and/or soluble markers to determine if a predictive biomarker signature (i.e., mutated gene product, differentially expressed protein, altered cell surface antigen, etc.) exists as a means for selecting optimal treatment. These biomarkers may be drug-specific targets and/or differentially expressed nucleic acids, proteins, or cell lineage profiles that can directly affect the patient’s disease tissue or immune response to a therapeutic regimen. Improvements in diagnostics that can prescreen predictive response biomarker profiles will continue to optimize the ability to enhance patient therapy via molecularly defined disease-specific treatment. Conversely, patients lacking predictive response biomarkers will no longer needlessly be exposed to drugs that are unlikely to provide clinical benefit, thereby enabling patients to pursue other therapeutic options and lowering overall healthcare costs by avoiding futile treatment. While patient molecular profiling offers a powerful tool to direct treatment options, the difficulty in identifying disease-specific targets or predictive biomarker signatures that stratify a significant fraction within a disease indication remains challenging. A goal for drug developers is to identify and implement new strategies that can rapidly enable the development of beneficial disease-specific therapies for broad patient-specific targeting without the need of tedious predictive biomarker discovery and validation efforts, currently a bottleneck for development timelines. Successful strategies may gain an advantage by employing repurposed, less-expensive existing agents while

  7. On the utility of spectroscopic imaging as a tool for generating geometrically accurate MR images and parameter maps in the presence of field inhomogeneities and chemical shift effects.

    PubMed

    Bakker, Chris J G; de Leeuw, Hendrik; van de Maat, Gerrit H; van Gorp, Jetse S; Bouwman, Job G; Seevinck, Peter R

    2013-01-01

    Lack of spatial accuracy is a recognized problem in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) which severely detracts from its value as a stand-alone modality for applications that put high demands on geometric fidelity, such as radiotherapy treatment planning and stereotactic neurosurgery. In this paper, we illustrate the potential and discuss the limitations of spectroscopic imaging as a tool for generating purely phase-encoded MR images and parameter maps that preserve the geometry of an object and allow localization of object features in world coordinates. Experiments were done on a clinical system with standard facilities for imaging and spectroscopy. Images were acquired with a regular spin echo sequence and a corresponding spectroscopic imaging sequence. In the latter, successive samples of the acquired echo were used for the reconstruction of a series of evenly spaced images in the time and frequency domain. Experiments were done with a spatial linearity phantom and a series of test objects representing a wide range of susceptibility- and chemical-shift-induced off-resonance conditions. In contrast to regular spin echo imaging, spectroscopic imaging was shown to be immune to off-resonance effects, such as those caused by field inhomogeneity, susceptibility, chemical shift, f(0) offset and field drift, and to yield geometrically accurate images and parameter maps that allowed object structures to be localized in world coordinates. From these illustrative examples and a discussion of the limitations of purely phase-encoded imaging techniques, it is concluded that spectroscopic imaging offers a fundamental solution to the geometric deficiencies of MRI which may evolve toward a practical solution when full advantage will be taken of current developments with regard to scan time reduction. This perspective is backed up by a demonstration of the significant scan time reduction that may be achieved by the use of compressed sensing for a simple phantom. PMID:22898694

  8. Cotton-based diagnostic devices.

    PubMed

    Lin, Shang-Chi; Hsu, Min-Yen; Kuan, Chen-Meng; Wang, Hsi-Kai; Chang, Chia-Ling; Tseng, Fan-Gang; Cheng, Chao-Min

    2014-01-01

    A good diagnostic procedure avoids wasting medical resources, is easy to use, resists contamination, and provides accurate information quickly to allow for rapid follow-up therapies. We developed a novel diagnostic procedure using a "cotton-based diagnostic device" capable of real-time detection, i.e., in vitro diagnostics (IVD), which avoids reagent contamination problems common to existing biomedical devices and achieves the abovementioned goals of economy, efficiency, ease of use, and speed. Our research reinforces the advantages of an easy-to-use, highly accurate diagnostic device created from an inexpensive and readily available U.S. FDA-approved material (i.e., cotton as flow channel and chromatography paper as reaction zone) that adopts a standard calibration curve method in a buffer system (i.e., nitrite, BSA, urobilinogen and uric acid assays) to accurately obtain semi-quantitative information and limit the cross-contamination common to multiple-use tools. Our system, which specifically targets urinalysis diagnostics and employs a multiple biomarker approach, requires no electricity, no professional training, and is exceptionally portable for use in remote or home settings. This could be particularly useful in less industrialized areas. PMID:25393975

  9. Arabic version of the Major Depression Inventory as a diagnostic tool: reliability and concurrent and discriminant validity.

    PubMed

    Fawzi, M H; Fawzi, M M; Abu-Hindi, W

    2012-04-01

    The Major Depression Inventory (MDI) is a brief questionnaire to assess the presence of a depressive disorder. We prepared an Arabic version of the MDI and tested its reliability and concurrent and discriminant validity as a diagnostic tool of major depressive disorder. A group of 50 Egyptian outpatients with major depressive disorder (assessed clinically and with the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV-TR Axis I Disorders) were compared with 50 healthy controls using the MDI-A, Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STA.). Cronbach a was 0.91 and intraclass correlation coefficient was 0.98 (95% CI: 0.97-0.99). Scores on the MDI-A strongly correlated with BDI scores (r = 0.81) but insignificantly correlated with STAI scores. Using the MDI scoring algorithm, the sensitivity was 88.4% and specificity 78.9%. We conclude that the MDI-A has an excellent reliability and an acceptable concurrent and discriminant validity. PMID:22768690

  10. Serum profiling by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry as a diagnostic tool for domoic acid toxicosis in California sea lions

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background There are currently no reliable markers of acute domoic acid toxicosis (DAT) for California sea lions. We investigated whether patterns of serum peptides could diagnose acute DAT. Serum peptides were analyzed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry from 107 sea lions (acute DAT n = 34; non-DAT n = 73). Artificial neural networks (ANN) were trained using MALDI-TOF data. Individual peaks and neural networks were qualified using an independent test set (n = 20). Results No single peak was a good classifier of acute DAT, and ANN models were the best predictors of acute DAT. Performance measures for a single median ANN were: sensitivity, 100%; specificity, 60%; positive predictive value, 71%; negative predictive value, 100%. When 101 ANNs were combined and allowed to vote for the outcome, the performance measures were: sensitivity, 30%; specificity, 100%; positive predictive value, 100%; negative predictive value, 59%. Conclusions These results suggest that MALDI-TOF peptide profiling and neural networks can perform either as a highly sensitive (100% negative predictive value) or a highly specific (100% positive predictive value) diagnostic tool for acute DAT. This also suggests that machine learning directed by populations of predictive models offer the ability to modulate the predictive effort into a specific type of error. PMID:22429742

  11. Carbon isotope discrimination as a diagnostic tool for C4 photosynthesis in C3-C4 intermediate species

    PubMed Central

    Alonso-Cantabrana, Hugo; von Caemmerer, Susanne

    2016-01-01

    The presence and activity of the C4 cycle in C3-C4 intermediate species have proven difficult to analyze, especially when such activity is low. This study proposes a strategy to detect C4 activity and estimate its contribution to overall photosynthesis in intermediate plants, by using tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy (TDLAS) coupled to gas exchange systems to simultaneously measure the CO2 responses of CO2 assimilation (A) and carbon isotope discrimination (Δ) under low O2 partial pressure. Mathematical models of C3-C4 photosynthesis and Δ are then fitted concurrently to both responses using the same set of constants. This strategy was applied to the intermediate species Flaveria floridana and F. brownii, and to F. pringlei and F. bidentis as C3 and C4 controls, respectively. Our results support the presence of a functional C4 cycle in F. floridana, that can fix 12–21% of carbon. In F. brownii, 75–100% of carbon is fixed via the C4 cycle, and the contribution of mesophyll Rubisco to overall carbon assimilation increases with CO2 partial pressure in both intermediate plants. Combined gas exchange and Δ measurement and modeling is a powerful diagnostic tool for C4 photosynthesis. PMID:26862154

  12. A potential new diagnostic tool to aid DNA analysis from heat compromised bone using colorimetry: A preliminary study.

    PubMed

    Fredericks, Jamie D; Ringrose, Trevor J; Dicken, Anthony; Williams, Anna; Bennett, Phil

    2015-03-01

    Extracting viable DNA from many forensic sample types can be very challenging, as environmental conditions may be far from optimal with regard to DNA preservation. Consequently, skeletal tissue can often be an invaluable source of DNA. The bone matrix provides a hardened material that encapsulates DNA, acting as a barrier to environmental insults that would otherwise be detrimental to its integrity. However, like all forensic samples, DNA in bone can still become degraded in extreme conditions, such as intense heat. Extracting DNA from bone can be laborious and time-consuming. Thus, a lot of time and money can be wasted processing samples that do not ultimately yield viable DNA. We describe the use of colorimetry as a novel diagnostic tool that can assist DNA analysis from heat-treated bone. This study focuses on characterizing changes in the material and physical properties of heated bone, and their correlation with digitally measured color variation. The results demonstrate that the color of bone, which serves as an indicator of the chemical processes that have occurred, can be correlated with the success or failure of subsequent DNA amplification. PMID:25753998

  13. Dissociative symptoms and dissociative disorders comorbidity in obsessive compulsive disorder: Symptom screening, diagnostic tools and reflections on treatment.

    PubMed

    Belli, Hasan

    2014-08-16

    Borderline personality disorder, conversion disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder frequently have dissociative symptoms. The literature has demonstrated that the level of dissociation might be correlated with the severity of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and that those not responding to treatment had high dissociative symptoms. The structured clinical interview for DSM-IV dissociative disorders, dissociation questionnaire, somatoform dissociation questionnaire and dissociative experiences scale can be used for screening dissociative symptoms and detecting dissociative disorders in patients with OCD. However, a history of neglect and abuse during childhood is linked to a risk factor in the pathogenesis of dissociative psychopathology in adults. The childhood trauma questionnaire-53 and childhood trauma questionnaire-40 can be used for this purpose. Clinicians should not fail to notice the hidden dissociative symptoms and childhood traumatic experiences in OCD cases with severe symptoms that are resistant to treatment. Symptom screening and diagnostic tools used for this purpose should be known. Knowing how to treat these pathologies in patients who are diagnosed with OCD can be crucial. PMID:25133142

  14. Auditory Brainstem Response Wave Amplitude Characteristics as a Diagnostic Tool in Children with Speech Delay with Unknown Causes

    PubMed Central

    Abadi, Susan; Khanbabaee, Ghamartaj; Sheibani, Kourosh

    2016-01-01

    Speech delay with an unknown cause is a problem among children. This diagnosis is the last differential diagnosis after observing normal findings in routine hearing tests. The present study was undertaken to determine whether auditory brainstem responses to click stimuli are different between normally developing children and children suffering from delayed speech with unknown causes. In this cross-sectional study, we compared click auditory brainstem responses between 261 children who were clinically diagnosed with delayed speech with unknown causes based on normal routine auditory test findings and neurological examinations and had >12 months of speech delay (case group) and 261 age- and sex-matched normally developing children (control group). Our results indicated that the case group exhibited significantly higher wave amplitude responses to click stimuli (waves I, III, and V) than did the control group (P=0.001). These amplitudes were significantly reduced after 1 year (P=0.001); however, they were still significantly higher than those of the control group (P=0.001). The significant differences were seen regardless of the age and the sex of the participants. There were no statistically significant differences between the 2 groups considering the latency of waves I, III, and V. In conclusion, the higher amplitudes of waves I, III, and V, which were observed in the auditory brainstem responses to click stimuli among the patients with speech delay with unknown causes, might be used as a diagnostic tool to track patients’ improvement after treatment. PMID:27582591

  15. Quantum cascade laser based monitoring of CF2 radical concentration as a diagnostic tool of dielectric etching plasma processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hübner, M.; Lang, N.; Zimmermann, S.; Schulz, S. E.; Buchholtz, W.; Röpcke, J.; van Helden, J. H.

    2015-01-01

    Dielectric etching plasma processes for modern interlevel dielectrics become more and more complex by the introduction of new ultra low-k dielectrics. One challenge is the minimization of sidewall damage, while etching ultra low-k porous SiCOH by fluorocarbon plasmas. The optimization of this process requires a deeper understanding of the concentration of the CF2 radical, which acts as precursor in the polymerization of the etch sample surfaces. In an industrial dielectric etching plasma reactor, the CF2 radical was measured in situ using a continuous wave quantum cascade laser (cw-QCL) around 1106.2 cm-1. We measured Doppler-resolved ro-vibrational absorption lines and determined absolute densities using transitions in the ν3 fundamental band of CF2 with the aid of an improved simulation of the line strengths. We found that the CF2 radical concentration during the etching plasma process directly correlates to the layer structure of the etched wafer. Hence, this correlation can serve as a diagnostic tool of dielectric etching plasma processes. Applying QCL based absorption spectroscopy opens up the way for advanced process monitoring and etching controlling in semiconductor manufacturing.

  16. Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) as a diagnostic tool in patients with suspected stroke or traumatic brain injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldberg, Sonja; Lott, Carsten; Ostermeyer, M.; Hennes, Hans-Juergen

    2001-10-01

    Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) as a diagnostic tool in patients with suspected stroke or brain injury S. Goldberg, C. Lott, M. Ostermeyer, H.-J. Hennes Absorption of Near-Infrared (NIR) light in the brain is mainly caused by hemoglobin. Superficial intracranial hematoma with a higher concentration of hemoglobin causes a higher absorption in NIRS. The existence of hemorrhage can be demonstrated by the difference of optical density, comparing identical measuring points at both hemispheres of the brain: absorption of NIR light is greater at the side of the hemorrhage, causing less reflection in NIRS. In a prospective, blinded study, 100 patients who were scheduled for CCT-scan for brain injury or symptoms of stroke have been measured by NIRS. The measurement results were proved by the CCT-diagnosis. A sensitivity of the NIR measurement of 65% and a specificity of 87% was achieved including all patients with any pathology, whereas the subgroup of 58 patients with suspected superficial hematoma and without other pathology showed pathologic findings by NIRS in all of 16 patients indicating superficial bleeding by CCT, pathology could be excluded by NIRS and CCT in 41 patients, one false positive and no false negative result. The results (sensitivity 98%, specificity 100%) support the hypothesis that NIRS is a reliable device for the detection of superficial intracranial hematoma.

  17. Carbon isotope discrimination as a diagnostic tool for C4 photosynthesis in C3-C4 intermediate species.

    PubMed

    Alonso-Cantabrana, Hugo; von Caemmerer, Susanne

    2016-05-01

    The presence and activity of the C4 cycle in C3-C4 intermediate species have proven difficult to analyze, especially when such activity is low. This study proposes a strategy to detect C4 activity and estimate its contribution to overall photosynthesis in intermediate plants, by using tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy (TDLAS) coupled to gas exchange systems to simultaneously measure the CO2 responses of CO2 assimilation (A) and carbon isotope discrimination (Δ) under low O2 partial pressure. Mathematical models of C3-C4 photosynthesis and Δ are then fitted concurrently to both responses using the same set of constants. This strategy was applied to the intermediate species Flaveria floridana and F. brownii, and to F. pringlei and F. bidentis as C3 and C4 controls, respectively. Our results support the presence of a functional C4 cycle in F. floridana, that can fix 12-21% of carbon. In F. brownii, 75-100% of carbon is fixed via the C4 cycle, and the contribution of mesophyll Rubisco to overall carbon assimilation increases with CO2 partial pressure in both intermediate plants. Combined gas exchange and Δ measurement and modeling is a powerful diagnostic tool for C4 photosynthesis. PMID:26862154

  18. Auditory Brainstem Response Wave Amplitude Characteristics as a Diagnostic Tool in Children with Speech Delay with Unknown Causes.

    PubMed

    Abadi, Susan; Khanbabaee, Ghamartaj; Sheibani, Kourosh

    2016-09-01

    Speech delay with an unknown cause is a problem among children. This diagnosis is the last differential diagnosis after observing normal findings in routine hearing tests. The present study was undertaken to determine whether auditory brainstem responses to click stimuli are different between normally developing children and children suffering from delayed speech with unknown causes. In this cross-sectional study, we compared click auditory brainstem responses between 261 children who were clinically diagnosed with delayed speech with unknown causes based on normal routine auditory test findings and neurological examinations and had >12 months of speech delay (case group) and 261 age- and sex-matched normally developing children (control group). Our results indicated that the case group exhibited significantly higher wave amplitude responses to click stimuli (waves I, III, and V) than did the control group (P=0.001). These amplitudes were significantly reduced after 1 year (P=0.001); however, they were still significantly higher than those of the control group (P=0.001). The significant differences were seen regardless of the age and the sex of the participants. There were no statistically significant differences between the 2 groups considering the latency of waves I, III, and V. In conclusion, the higher amplitudes of waves I, III, and V, which were observed in the auditory brainstem responses to click stimuli among the patients with speech delay with unknown causes, might be used as a diagnostic tool to track patients' improvement after treatment. PMID:27582591

  19. Fecal Calprotectin is an Accurate Tool and Correlated to Seo Index in Prediction of Relapse in Iranian Patients With Ulcerative Colitis

    PubMed Central

    Hosseini, Seyed Vahid; Jafari, Peyman; Taghavi, Seyed Alireza; Safarpour, Ali Reza; Rezaianzadeh, Abbas; Moini, Maryam; Mehrabi, Manoosh

    2015-01-01

    Background: The natural clinical course of Ulcerative Colitis (UC) is characterized by episodes of relapse and remission. Fecal Calprotectin (FC) is a relatively new marker of intestinal inflammation and is an available, non-expensive tool for predicting relapse of quiescent UC. The Seo colitis activity index is a clinical index for assessment of the severity of UC. Objectives: The present study aimed to evaluate the accuracy of FC and the Seo colitis activity index and their correlation in prediction of UC exacerbation. Patients and Methods: In this prospective cohort study, 157 patients with clinical and endoscopic diagnosis of UC selected randomly from 1273 registered patients in Fars province’s IBD registry center in Shiraz, Iran, were followed from October 2012 to October 2013 for 12 months or shorter, if they had a relapse. Two patients left the study before completion and one patient had relapse because of discontinuation of drugs. The participants' clinical and serum factors were evaluated every three months. Furthermore, stool samples were collected at the beginning of study and every three months and FC concentration (commercially available enzyme linked immunoassay) and the Seo Index were assessed. Then univariate analysis, multiple variable logistic regression, Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) curve analysis, and Pearson’s correlation test (r) were used for statistical analysis of data. Results: According to the results, 74 patients (48.1%) relapsed during the follow-up (33 men and 41 women). Mean ± SD of FC was 862.82 ± 655.97 μg/g and 163.19 ± 215.85 μg/g in relapsing and non-relapsing patients, respectively (P < 0.001). Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that age, number of previous relapses, FC and the Seo index were significant predictors of relapse. ROC curve analysis of FC level and Seo activity index for prediction of relapse demonstrated area under the curve of 0.882 (P < 0.001) and 0.92 1(P < 0.001), respectively

  20. Cone beam computed tomography imaging as a primary diagnostic tool for computer-guided surgery and CAD-CAM interim removable and fixed dental prostheses.

    PubMed

    Charette, Jyme R; Goldberg, Jack; Harris, Bryan T; Morton, Dean; Llop, Daniel R; Lin, Wei-Shao

    2016-08-01

    This article describes a digital workflow using cone beam computed tomography imaging as the primary diagnostic tool in the virtual planning of the computer-guided surgery and fabrication of a maxillary interim complete removable dental prosthesis and mandibular interim implant-supported complete fixed dental prosthesis with computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing technology. Diagnostic impressions (conventional or digital) and casts are unnecessary in this proposed digital workflow, providing clinicians with an alternative treatment in the indicated clinical scenario. PMID:27086108

  1. Multispectral imaging techniques observing the dynamic changes in the hemoglobin concentrations as diagnostic tool for diseased tissues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klaessens, John H. G. M.; Noordmands, Herke Jan; de Roode, Rowland; Verdaasdonk, Rudolf M.

    2010-02-01

    Tissue oxygenation imaging is a promising diagnostics tool to study the changes and dynamics of tissue perfusion reflecting pathologic and/or physiologic conditions of tissue. In clinical settings, imaging of local oxygenation or blood perfusion variations can be useful for e.g. detection of skin cancer, detection of early inflammation, effectiveness of peripheral nerve block anesthesia, study of the process of wound healing or localization of the cerebral area causing an epileptic attack. In this study, two oxygenation imaging methods based on multi-spectral techniques were evaluated: one system consisting of a CCD camera in combination with a Liquid Crystal Tunable Filter (420 - 730 nm or 650-1100 nm) and a broad band (white) light source, while the second system was a CCD camera in combination with a tunable multispectral LED light source (450-890nm). By collecting narrowband images at selected wavelengths, concentration changes of the different chromophores at the surface of the tissue (e.g. dO2Hb, dHHb and dtHb) can be calculated using the modified Lambert Beer equation. Two analyzing methods were used to calculate the concentration changes this to reduce the errors caused by movement of the tissue. In vivo measurements were obtained during skin oxygen changes induced by temporary arm clamping to validate the methods and algorithms. Functional information from the tissue surface was collected, in non-contact mode, by imaging the hemodynamic and oxygenation changes just below that surface. Both multi-spectral imaging techniques show promising results for detecting dynamic changes in the hemoglobin concentrations. The algorithms need to be optimized and image acquisition and processing needs to be developed top real time for practical clinical applications.

  2. Investigation of the potential of optical coherence tomography (OCT) as a non-invasive diagnostic tool in reproductive medicine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trottmann, Matthias; Homann, Christian; Leeb, R.; Doering, D.; Kuznetsova, J.; Reese, S.; Stief, C. G.; Koelle, S.; Sroka, R.

    2015-02-01

    Introduction and objective: In Europe, nearly every sixth couple in the reproductive age is involuntarily childless. In about 30%, both male and female reveal fertility problems. In about 10% of infertile men, azoospermia is the underlying cause. As conventional therapeutic options are limited, surgical testicular sperm extraction (TESE) is necessary to obtain sperms for assisted reproductive techniques. Regarding the females, up to 30% of all idiopathic infertilities are due to alterations of the uterine tube So far, no imaging technique, which does not require any labelling, is available to evaluate the male and female genital tract at a microscopic level under in vivo conditions. Thus, the aim of this study was to investigate the potential of optical coherence tomography (OCT) as a non-invasive diagnostic tool in gynaecology and andrology. Material and Methods: Tissues samples from the bovine testis, epididymis, vas deferens, ovary, oviduct (ampulla and isthmus) and uterus were obtained immediately after slaughter (14 cows aged 3 to 8 years and 14 bulls aged 3 to 6 years; breeds: Holstein- Friesian, and Deutsches Fleckvieh). Imaging was done by using the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved probe-based Niris Imaging System (Imalux, Cleveland, Ohio, USA) and the Telesto 1325 nm OCT System and Ganymede 930 nm OCT System (Thorlabs Inc., Dachau, Germany). All images obtained were compared to histological images after paraffin embedding and HE staining. Results: OCT imaging visualized the microarchitecture of the testis, epididymis, spermatic duct and the ovary, oviduct and uterus. Using the Thorlabs systems a axial resolution of approx. 5μm and lateral resolution of 8- 15μm could be achieved. Different optical tissue volumes could be visualized, which depends on the optical penetration depth of the wavelength of the system used. While the tissue volume observed by probe based Imalux-OCT is similar to the used Thorlabs systems, the optical resolution is

  3. Lichtheimia Infection in a Lymphoma Patient: Case Report and a Brief Review of the Available Diagnostic Tools.

    PubMed

    Zimmerli, Stefan; Bialek, Ralf; Blau, Igor W; Christe, Andreas; Lass-Flörl, Cornelia; Presterl, Elisabeth

    2016-08-01

    We describe the case of a patient with a T-lymphoblastic lymphoma whose disseminated mucormycosis was diagnosed with delay, and we address the diagnostic and therapeutic decision-making process and review the diagnostic workup of patients with potential IFD. The diagnosis was delayed despite a suggestive radiological presentation of the patient's pulmonary lesion. The uncommon risk profile (T-lymphoblastic lymphoma, short neutropenic phases) wrongly led to a low level of suspicion. The diagnosis was also hampered by the lack of indirect markers for infections caused by Mucorales, the low sensitivity of both fungal culture and panfungal PCR, and the limited availability of species-specific PCR. A high level of suspicion of IFD is needed, and aggressive diagnostic procedures should be promptly initiated even in apparently low-risk patients with uncommon presentations. The extent of the analytical workup should be decided on a case-by-case base. Diagnostic tests such as the galactomannan and β-D-glucan test and/or PCR on biological material followed by sequencing should be chosen according to their availability and after evaluation of their specificity and sensitivity. In high-risk patients, preemptive therapy with a broad-spectrum mould-active antifungal agent should be started before definitive diagnostic findings become available. PMID:27115610

  4. Custom oligonucleotide array-based CGH: a reliable diagnostic tool for detection of exonic copy-number changes in multiple targeted genes

    PubMed Central

    Vasson, Aurélie; Leroux, Céline; Orhant, Lucie; Boimard, Mathieu; Toussaint, Aurélie; Leroy, Chrystel; Commere, Virginie; Ghiotti, Tiffany; Deburgrave, Nathalie; Saillour, Yoann; Atlan, Isabelle; Fouveaut, Corinne; Beldjord, Cherif; Valleix, Sophie; Leturcq, France; Dodé, Catherine; Bienvenu, Thierry; Chelly, Jamel; Cossée, Mireille

    2013-01-01

    The frequency of disease-related large rearrangements (referred to as copy-number mutations, CNMs) varies among genes, and search for these mutations has an important place in diagnostic strategies. In recent years, CGH method using custom-designed high-density oligonucleotide-based arrays allowed the development of a powerful tool for detection of alterations at the level of exons and made it possible to provide flexibility through the possibility of modeling chips. The aim of our study was to test custom-designed oligonucleotide CGH array in a diagnostic laboratory setting that analyses several genes involved in various genetic diseases, and to compare it with conventional strategies. To this end, we designed a 12-plex CGH array (135k; 135 000 probes/subarray) (Roche Nimblegen) with exonic and intronic oligonucleotide probes covering 26 genes routinely analyzed in the laboratory. We tested control samples with known CNMs and patients for whom genetic causes underlying their disorders were unknown. The contribution of this technique is undeniable. Indeed, it appeared reproducible, reliable and sensitive enough to detect heterozygous single-exon deletions or duplications, complex rearrangements and somatic mosaicism. In addition, it improves reliability of CNM detection and allows determination of boundaries precisely enough to direct targeted sequencing of breakpoints. All of these points, associated with the possibility of a simultaneous analysis of several genes and scalability ‘homemade' make it a valuable tool as a new diagnostic approach of CNMs. PMID:23340513

  5. Rapid infectious diseases diagnostics using Smartphones

    PubMed Central

    Bates, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    The “Smartphone” is an almost universal possession in high-income populations, and is rapidly becoming so in lower-income regions, particularly among urban populations, and serves social networking and a quest for information and knowledge. The field of infectious disease diagnostics is at a potential watershed moment, with the essential building blocks for the development of diagnostic assays being ever more available and affordable, which is leading to creative innovative approaches to developing much-needed accurate and simple point-of-care (POC) diagnostic tools for high disease burden, low-income settings. We review the importance and implications of a paper published in Science Translational Medicine on the development of a smartphone-powered and -controlled multiplex immunological assay that tests for HIV and syphilis simultaneously. This is reviewed in the context of other prototype smartphone-enabled/assisted diagnostic devices, and how such developments might shape the future of the POC diagnostics field. PMID:26488011

  6. New Diagnostic Tool for Far Lateral Lumbar Disc Herniation : The Clinical Usefulness of 3-Tesla Magnetic Resonance Myelography Comparing with the Discography CT

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Duk-Gyu; Park, Jung-Soo

    2012-01-01

    Objective To prospectively assess the diagnostic and clinical value of a new technique (3-tesla magnetic resonance myelography, 3T MRM) as compared to computed tomographic discography (disco-CT) in patients with far lateral disc herniation. Methods We evaluated 3T MRM and disco-CT of 25 patients, whom we suspected of suffering from far lateral disc herniation. Using an assessment scale, 4 observers examined independently both 3T MRM and disco-CT images. We analyzed observer agreement and the accentuation of each image. Results We found complete matching, and observer agreement, between high resolution images of 3T MRM and disco-CT for diagnosing far lateral disc herniation. Conclusion We think noninvasive 3T MRM is an appropriate diagnostic tool for far lateral disc herniation as compared to disco-CT. PMID:23091667

  7. 16S classifier: a tool for fast and accurate taxonomic classification of 16S rRNA hypervariable regions in metagenomic datasets.

    PubMed

    Chaudhary, Nikhil; Sharma, Ashok K; Agarwal, Piyush; Gupta, Ankit; Sharma, Vineet K

    2015-01-01

    The diversity of microbial species in a metagenomic study is commonly assessed using 16S rRNA gene sequencing. With the rapid developments in genome sequencing technologies, the focus has shifted towards the sequencing of hypervariable regions of 16S rRNA gene instead of full length gene sequencing. Therefore, 16S Classifier is developed using a machine learning method, Random Forest, for faster and accurate taxonomic classification of short hypervariable regions of 16S rRNA sequence. It displayed precision values of up to 0.91 on training datasets and the precision values of up to 0.98 on the test dataset. On real metagenomic datasets, it showed up to 99.7% accuracy at the phylum level and up to 99.0% accuracy at the genus level. 16S Classifier is available freely at http://metagenomics.iiserb.ac.in/16Sclassifier and http://metabiosys.iiserb.ac.in/16Sclassifier. PMID:25646627

  8. Plasma beta-amyloid as potential biomarker of Alzheimer disease: possibility of diagnostic tool for Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

    Takeda, Shuko; Sato, Naoyuki; Rakugi, Hiromi; Morishita, Ryuichi

    2010-10-01

    Alzheimer disease (AD), which is characterized by progressive cognitive and behavioral deficit, is the most common form of dementia. The incidence of AD is increasing at an alarming rate, and has become a major public health concern in many countries. It is well known that the onset of AD is preceded by a long preclinical period. It is thus critical to establish diagnostic biomarkers that can predict the risk of developing AD prior to clinical manifestation of dementia, for effective prevention and early intervention. With the emergence of potential promising approaches to treat AD targeting the beta-amyloid (Abeta) pathway, such as gamma-secretase inhibitors and vaccine therapy, there is an urgent need for such diagnostic markers. Although cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) Abeta and tau protein levels are candidate biomarkers for AD, the invasive sampling procedure with associated complications limits their use in routine clinical practice. Plasma Abeta has been suggested as an inexpensive and non-invasive biomarker for AD. Although most previous cross-sectional studies on plasma Abeta level in humans failed to show a significant difference between individuals with AD compared to healthy older adults, many strategies are under investigation to improve the diagnostic potential of plasma Abeta. One promising approach is to modify the plasma Abeta level using some potential modulators. It is possible that a difference in plasma Abeta level might be unmasked by evaluating the response to stimulation by a modulator. Anti-Abeta antibody and Abeta binding proteins have been reported to be such modulators of plasma Abeta. In addition, the glucometabolic or hormonal status appears to modulate the plasma Abeta level. Our recent study has shown the possibility that glucose loading could be a novel simple strategy to modulate the plasma Abeta level, making it better suited for early diagnosis. This review summarizes the utility and limitations of current biomarkers of AD and

  9. Bias-corrected diagnostic performance of the naked-eye single-tube red-cell osmotic fragility test (NESTROFT): an effective screening tool for beta-thalassemia.

    PubMed

    Mamtani, Manju; Jawahirani, Anil; Das, Kishor; Rughwani, Vinky; Kulkarni, Hemant

    2006-08-01

    It is being increasingly recognized that a majority of the countries in the thalassemia-belt need a cost-effective screening program as the first step towards control of thalassemia. Although the naked eye single tube red cell osmotic fragility test (NESTROFT) has been considered to be a very effective screening tool for beta-thalassemia trait, assessment of its diagnostic performance has been affected with the reference test- and verification-bias. Here, we set out to provide estimates of sensitivity and specificity of NESTROFT corrected for these potential biases. We conducted a cross-sectional diagnostic test evaluation study using data from 1563 subjects from Central India with a high prevalence of beta-thalassemia. We used latent class modelling after ensuring its validity to account for the reference test bias and global sensitivity analysis to control the verification bias. We also compared the results of latent class modelling with those of five discriminant indexes. We observed that across a range of cut-offs for the mean corpuscular volume (MCV) and the hemoglobin A2 (HbA2) concentration the average sensitivity and specificity of NESTROFT obtained from latent class modelling was 99.8 and 83.7%, respectively. These estimates were comparable to those characterizing the diagnostic performance of HbA2, which is considered by many as the reference test to detect beta-thalassemia. After correction for the verification bias these estimates were 93.4 and 97.2%, respectively. Combined with the inexpensive and quick disposition of NESTROFT, these results strongly support its candidature as a screening tool-especially in the resource-poor and high-prevalence settings. PMID:17178668

  10. Single molecule detection for in vitro diagnostics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirner, Thomas; Ackermann, Jörg; Mathis, Harald P.; Greiner, Benjamin; Tonn, Thomas; Tschachojan, David; Kukoc-Zivojnov, Natasa; Giehring, Sebastian

    2008-02-01

    In this paper we present a novel highly sensitive detection system for diagnostic applications. The system is designed to meet the needs of medical diagnostics for reliable measurements of pathogens and biomarkers in the low concentration regime. It consists of a confocal detection unit, micro-structured sampling cells, and a "Virtual lab" analysis software. The detection unit works with laser induced fluorescence and is designed to provide accurate and highly sensitive measurement at the single molecule level. Various sampling cells are micro-structured in glass, silicon or polymers to enable measurements under flow and nonflow conditions. Sampling volume is below one microliter. The "Virtual lab" software analyzes the light intensity online according to the patent pending "Accurate Stochastic Fluorescence Spectroscopy" (ASFS) developed by FluIT Biosystems GmbH. Tools for simulation and experiment optimization are included as well. Experimental results for various applications with relevance for in vitro diagnostics will be presented.

  11. Single nucleotide polymorphism array karyotyping: a diagnostic and prognostic tool in myelodysplastic syndromes with unsuccessful conventional cytogenetic testing.

    PubMed

    Arenillas, Leonor; Mallo, Mar; Ramos, Fernando; Guinta, Kathryn; Barragán, Eva; Lumbreras, Eva; Larráyoz, María-José; De Paz, Raquel; Tormo, Mar; Abáigar, María; Pedro, Carme; Cervera, José; Such, Esperanza; José Calasanz, María; Díez-Campelo, María; Sanz, Guillermo F; Hernández, Jesús María; Luño, Elisa; Saumell, Sílvia; Maciejewski, Jaroslaw; Florensa, Lourdes; Solé, Francesc

    2013-12-01

    Cytogenetic aberrations identified by metaphase cytogenetics (MC) have diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic implications in myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). However, in some MDS patients MC study is unsuccesful. Single nucleotide polymorphism array (SNP-A) based karyotyping could be helpful in these cases. We performed SNP-A in 62 samples from bone marrow or peripheral blood of primary MDS with an unsuccessful MC study. SNP-A analysis enabled the detection of aberrations in 31 (50%) patients. We used the copy number alteration information to apply the International Prognostic Scoring System (IPSS) and we observed differences in survival between the low/intermediate-1 and intermediate-2/high risk patients. We also saw differences in survival between very low/low/intermediate and the high/very high patients when we applied the revised IPSS (IPSS-R). In conclusion, SNP-A can be used successfully in PB samples and the identification of CNA by SNP-A improve the diagnostic and prognostic evaluation of this group of MDS patients. PMID:24123380

  12. Flow Cytometry-Assisted Basophil Activation Test as a Safe Diagnostic Tool for Aspirin/NSAID Hypersenstivity

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Myung Shin

    2012-01-01

    Purpose Aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (ASA/NSAIDs) are common causes of drug hypersensitivity. An oral provocation test is the only definitive diagnostic test. This study assessed the reliability of a flow cytometry-assisted basophil activation test (FAST) as a safe diagnostic method for ASA/NSAID-induced hypersensitivity, as its high sensitivity and specificity have been demonstrated for many other drugs. Methods Eighteen patients and 11 controls were enrolled. Using a Flow-CAST kit® (Bühlmann Laboratories AG, Schönenbuch, Switzerland), 29 analyses with aspirin, ibuprofen, and diclofenac were performed by flow cytometry to detect double-positive staining of anti-IgE and anti-CD63. The stimulation index was defined as the activated basophil percentage after drug stimulation/basally active basophil percentage. A stimulation index≥2 and an absolute activated basophil percentage≥5 were considered positive. Results Patients with hypersensitivity to ASA/NSAIDs were predominantly female, and the prevalence of atopy was higher in patients than in controls. A sensitivity of 61%, specificity of 91%, positive predictive value of 92%, and negative predictive value of 59% were achieved. Conclusions FAST is a useful additional method for diagnosis of hypersensitivity reactions to ASA/NSAIDs. Further development is required to increase the sensitivity of the test. PMID:22548206

  13. A user-friendly, open-source tool to project impact and cost of diagnostic tests for tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Dowdy, David W; Andrews, Jason R; Dodd, Peter J; Gilman, Robert H

    2014-01-01

    Most models of infectious diseases, including tuberculosis (TB), do not provide results customized to local conditions. We created a dynamic transmission model to project TB incidence, TB mortality, multidrug-resistant (MDR) TB prevalence, and incremental costs over 5 years after scale-up of nine alternative diagnostic strategies. A corresponding web-based interface allows users to specify local costs and epidemiology. In settings with little capacity for up-front investment, same-day microscopy had the greatest impact on TB incidence and became cost-saving within 5 years if delivered at $10/test. With greater initial investment, population-level scale-up of Xpert MTB/RIF or microcolony-based culture often averted 10 times more TB cases than narrowly-targeted strategies, at minimal incremental long-term cost. Xpert for smear-positive TB had reasonable impact on MDR-TB incidence, but at substantial price and little impact on overall TB incidence and mortality. This user-friendly modeling framework improves decision-makers' ability to evaluate the local impact of TB diagnostic strategies. PMID:24898755

  14. Coronary CT Angiography as a Diagnostic and Prognostic Tool: Perspective from a Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial: PROMISE.

    PubMed

    Bittner, Daniel O; Ferencik, Maros; Douglas, Pamela S; Hoffmann, Udo

    2016-05-01

    The PROMISE (Prospective multicenter imaging study for evaluation of chest pain) trial compared the effectiveness of coronary CT angiography and functional testing as initial diagnostic test for patients with suspicion for stable coronary artery disease (CAD). With 10,003 patients randomized at 193 sites, the PROMISE trial provides a snapshot of real-world care for this very common presentation. Over a median follow-up of 25 months, PROMISE did not find significant differences in major clinical events (composite endpoint 164 vs. 151, HR 1.04 (0.83-1.29); p = 0.75) between the two strategies. Other major findings were the large discrepancy between estimates of pre-test likelihood and observed prevalence for obstructive CAD (≥50 %) and the proportion of noninvasive tests positive for ischemia or obstructive CAD (53 vs. 11 %; respectively) and the better efficiency of coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) to select patients for invasive coronary angiography (ICA) who had obstructive CAD (72 vs. 48 % for coronary CTA and functional testing, respectively). Radiation exposure was higher in the CT arm compared to all functional testing but lower than for nuclear perfusion stress testing. Improvement of patient selection for diagnostic testing and risk stratification will be keys to increase efficacy and efficiency of management of patients with suspicion for stable CAD. PMID:26995403

  15. A user-friendly, open-source tool to project impact and cost of diagnostic tests for tuberculosis

    PubMed Central

    Dowdy, David W; Andrews, Jason R; Dodd, Peter J; Gilman, Robert H

    2014-01-01

    Most models of infectious diseases, including tuberculosis (TB), do not provide results customized to local conditions. We created a dynamic transmission model to project TB incidence, TB mortality, multidrug-resistant (MDR) TB prevalence, and incremental costs over 5 years after scale-up of nine alternative diagnostic strategies. A corresponding web-based interface allows users to specify local costs and epidemiology. In settings with little capacity for up-front investment, same-day microscopy had the greatest impact on TB incidence and became cost-saving within 5 years if delivered at $10/test. With greater initial investment, population-level scale-up of Xpert MTB/RIF or microcolony-based culture often averted 10 times more TB cases than narrowly-targeted strategies, at minimal incremental long-term cost. Xpert for smear-positive TB had reasonable impact on MDR-TB incidence, but at substantial price and little impact on overall TB incidence and mortality. This user-friendly modeling framework improves decision-makers' ability to evaluate the local impact of TB diagnostic strategies. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02565.001 PMID:24898755

  16. Tuberculosis in elephants-a reemergent disease: diagnostic dilemmas, the natural history of infection, and new immunological tools.

    PubMed

    Maslow, J N; Mikota, S K

    2015-05-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) in elephants has been described since ancient times. However, it was not until 1996 when infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis was identified in a herd of circus elephants that significant research into this disease began. The epidemiology and natural history of TB were unknown in elephants since there had been no comprehensive screening programs, and diagnostic techniques developed for cervidae and bovidae were of unknown value. And, while precepts of test and slaughter were the norm for cattle and deer, this was considered untenable for an endangered species. With no precedent for the treatment of TB in animals, treatment regimens for elephants were extrapolated from human protocols, which guided changes to the Guidelines for the Control of Tuberculosis in Elephants. In the absence of diagnostic testing to confirm cure in elephants, the efficacy of these treatment regimens is only beginning to be understood as treated elephants die and are examined postmortem. However, because of pressures arising from public relations related to elephant husbandry and the added considerations of TB infection in animals (whether real or imagined), sharing of information to aid in research and treatment has been problematic. Here we review the challenges and successes of the diagnosis of tuberculosis in elephants and discuss the natural history of the disease to put the work of Landolfi et al on the immunological response to tuberculosis in elephants in perspective. PMID:25633896

  17. Intelligent Information Retrieval: Diagnosing Information Need. Part II. Uncertainty Expansion in a Prototype of a Diagnostic IR Tool.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cole, Charles; Cantero, Pablo; Sauve, Diane

    1998-01-01

    Outlines a prototype of an intelligent information-retrieval tool to facilitate information access for an undergraduate seeking information for a term paper. Topics include diagnosing the information need, Kuhlthau's information-search-process model, Shannon's mathematical theory of communication, and principles of uncertainty expansion and…

  18. Success Is an Open Book: Online Diagnostic Tools and Learning Outcomes in Introduction to American Government Courses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reed, Ryan; Smith, Daniel E.

    2016-01-01

    This project examines the utility of a particular course enhancement, Cengage's Aplia, and more generally interactive tools designed to facilitate reading in the introductory American government course. Using two control and two treatment sections of the course (one section each for two instructors) during the Fall 2013 term, we measured student…

  19. Cervical cytology as a diagnostic tool for female genital schistosomiasis: Correlation to cervical atypia and Schistosoma polymerase chain reaction

    PubMed Central

    Pillay, Pavitra; van Lieshout, Lisette; Taylor, Myra; Sebitloane, Motshedisi; Zulu, Siphosenkosi Gift; Kleppa, Elisabeth; Roald, Borghild; Kjetland, Eyrun Floerecke

    2016-01-01

    Background: Female genital schistosomiasis (FGS) is a tissue reaction to lodged ova of Schistosoma haematobium in the genital mucosa. Lesions can make the mucosa friable and prone to bleeding and discharge. Women with FGS may have an increased risk of HIV acquisition, and FGS may act as a cofactor in the development of cervical cancer. Objectives: To explore cytology as a method for diagnosing FGS and to discuss the diagnostic challenges in low-resource rural areas. The correlation between FGS and squamous cell atypia (SCA) is also explored and discussed. Cytology results are compared to Schistosoma polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in vaginal lavage and urine and in urine microscopy. Materials and Methods: In a clinical study, 394 women aged between 16 and 23 years from rural high schools in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, underwent structured interviews and the following laboratory tests: Cytology Papanicolaou (Pap) smears for S. haematobium ova and cervical SCA, real-time PCR for Schistosoma-specific DNA in vaginal lavage and urine samples, and urine microscopy for the presence of S. haematobium ova. Results: In Pap smears, S. haematobium ova were detected in 8/394 (2.0%). SCA was found in 107/394 (27.1%), seven of these had high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion (HSIL). Schistosoma specific DNA was detected in 38/394 (9.6%) of vaginal lavages and in 91/394 (23.0%) of urines. Ova were found microscopically in 78/394 (19.7%) of urines. Conclusion: Schistosoma PCR on lavage was a better way to diagnose FGS compared to cytology. There was a significant association between S. haematobium ova in Pap smears and the other diagnostic methods. In low-resource Schistosoma-endemic areas, it is important that cytology screeners are aware of diagnostic challenges in the identification of schistosomiasis in addition to the cytological diagnosis of SCA. Importantly, in this study, three of eight urines were negative but showed Schistosoma ova in their Pap smear, and one of them

  20. Hard x-ray correlation analysis as a diagnostic tool for the measurement of magnetic turbulence in tokamaks

    SciTech Connect

    Saha, S. K.; Hui, A. K.; Chowdhury, S.; Raychaudhuri, Santwana; Banik, D.

    2010-12-15

    A diagnostic has been developed for the measurement and characterization of the magnetic turbulence occurring in the core region of a tokamak. A specially shielded detector looking in the tangential direction has been employed to measure the thin target bremsstrahlung from the core plasma. The thick target bremsstrahlung from the limiter is also recorded at the same time. Auto- and cross-correlation analyses have been shown to yield, respectively, the stochasticity of the magnetic fluctuations in the core region and the consequent diffusion coefficient of the nonthermal electrons. The measured stochasticity bears a relationship with the diffusion coefficient. Data obtained from internal magnetic probes corroborate the above trend but the hard x-ray measurement data are shown to be more reliable than those obtained from magnetic probes.

  1. Optical shadowgraphy and proton imaging as diagnostics tools for fast electron propagation in ultrahigh-intensity laser-matter interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manclossi, M.; Batani, D.; Piazza, D.; Baton, S.; Amiranoff, F.; Koenig, M.; Popescu, H.; Audebert, P.; Santos, J. J.; Martinolli, E.; Benuzzi-Mounaix, A.; Le Gloahec, M. R.; Antonicci, A.; Rousseaux, C.; Borghesi, M.; Cecchetti, C.; Malka, V.; Hall, T.

    2005-10-01

    This paper reports the results of some recent experiments performed at the LULI laboratory (Palaiseau, France) concerning the propagation of large relativistic electron currents in a gas jet. We present our experimental results according to the type of diagnostics used in the experiments: (1) time resolved optical shadowgraphy and (2) proton imaging. Proton radiography images did show the presence of very strong fields in the gas probably produced by charge separation. In turn, these imply a slowing down of the fast electron cloud as it penetrates in the gas. Indeed, shadowgraphy images show a strong inhibition of propagation and a strong reduction in time of the velocity of the electron cloud from the initial value, which is of the order of a fraction of c.

  2. Microfluidic diagnostic technologies for global public health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yager, Paul; Edwards, Thayne; Fu, Elain; Helton, Kristen; Nelson, Kjell; Tam, Milton R.; Weigl, Bernhard H.

    2006-07-01

    The developing world does not have access to many of the best medical diagnostic technologies; they were designed for air-conditioned laboratories, refrigerated storage of chemicals, a constant supply of calibrators and reagents, stable electrical power, highly trained personnel and rapid transportation of samples. Microfluidic systems allow miniaturization and integration of complex functions, which could move sophisticated diagnostic tools out of the developed-world laboratory. These systems must be inexpensive, but also accurate, reliable, rugged and well suited to the medical and social contexts of the developing world.

  3. Bioinformatic tools for using whole genome sequencing as a rapid high resolution diagnostic typing tool when tracing bioterror organisms in the food and feed chain.

    PubMed

    Segerman, Bo; De Medici, Dario; Ehling Schulz, Monika; Fach, Patrick; Fenicia, Lucia; Fricker, Martina; Wielinga, Peter; Van Rotterdam, Bart; Knutsson, Rickard

    2011-03-01

    The rapid technological development in the field of parallel sequencing offers new opportunities when tracing and tracking microorganisms in the food and feed chain. If a bioterror organism is deliberately spread it is of crucial importance to get as much information as possible regarding the strain as fast as possible to aid the decision process and select suitable controls, tracing and tracking tools. A lot of efforts have been made to sequence multiple strains of potential bioterror organisms so there is a relatively large set of reference genomes available. This study is focused on how to use parallel sequencing for rapid phylogenomic analysis and screen for genetic modifications. A bioinformatic methodology has been developed to rapidly analyze sequence data with minimal post-processing. Instead of assembling the genome, defining genes, defining orthologous relations and calculating distances, the present method can achieve a similar high resolution directly from the raw sequence data. The method defines orthologous sequence reads instead of orthologous genes and the average similarity of the core genome (ASC) is calculated. The sequence reads from the core and from the non-conserved genomic regions can also be separated for further analysis. Finally, the comparison algorithm is used to visualize the phylogenomic diversity of the bacterial bioterror organisms Bacillus anthracis and Clostridium botulinum using heat plot diagrams. PMID:20826036

  4. Copeptin as a biomarker and a diagnostic tool in the evaluation of patients with polyuria-polydipsia and hyponatremia.

    PubMed

    Christ-Crain, M; Morgenthaler, N G; Fenske, W

    2016-03-01

    Copeptin is part of the 164 amino acid precursor protein preprovasopressin together with vasopressin and neurophysin II. During precursor processing, copeptin is released together with vasopressin. Copeptin concentrations respond as rapidly as vasopressin to changes in osmolality, a decrease in blood pressure or stress and there is a close correlation of vasopressin and copeptin concentrations. For these reasons, copeptin is propagated as a surrogate marker for vasopressin in the differential diagnosis of the polyuria-polydipsia syndromes and hyponatremia. Results of prospective studies show that a baseline copeptin level without prior fluid deprivation >20 pmol/L is able to identify patients with nephrogenic diabetes insipidus, whereas osmotically stimulated copeptin levels differentiate between patients with partial central diabetes insipidus and primary polydipsia with a high sensitivity and specificity >94%. In hyponatremia, low copeptin levels point to primary polydipsia and high levels to hypovolemic hyponatremia. The copeptin to urinary sodium ratio differentiates accurately between volume-depleted and normovolemic disorders. PMID:27156761

  5. Gene transcription in sea otters (Enhydra lutris); development of a diagnostic tool for sea otter and ecosystem health

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bowen, Lizabeth; Miles, A. Keith; Murray, Michael; Haulena, Martin; Tuttle, Judy; van Bonn, William; Adams, Lance; Bodkin, James L.; Ballachey, Brenda; Estes, James A.; Tinker, M. Tim; Keister, Robin; Stott, Jeffrey L.

    2012-01-01

    Gene transcription analysis for diagnosing or monitoring wildlife health requires the ability to distinguish pathophysiological change from natural variation. Herein, we describe methodology for the development of quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) assays to measure differential transcript levels of multiple immune function genes in the sea otter (Enhydra lutris); sea otter-specific qPCR primer sequences for the genes of interest are defined. We establish a ‘reference’ range of transcripts for each gene in a group of clinically healthy captive and free-ranging sea otters. The 10 genes of interest represent multiple physiological systems that play a role in immuno-modulation, inflammation, cell protection, tumour suppression, cellular stress response, xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes, antioxidant enzymes and cell–cell adhesion. The cycle threshold (CT) measures for most genes were normally distributed; the complement cytolysis inhibitor was the exception. The relative enumeration of multiple gene transcripts in simple peripheral blood samples expands the diagnostic capability currently available to assess the health of sea otters in situ and provides a better understanding of the state of their environment.

  6. CLIPS: A tool for corn disease diagnostic system and an aid to neural network for automated knowledge acquisition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wu, Cathy; Taylor, Pam; Whitson, George; Smith, Cathy

    1990-01-01

    This paper describes the building of a corn disease diagnostic expert system using CLIPS, and the development of a neural expert system using the fact representation method of CLIPS for automated knowledge acquisition. The CLIPS corn expert system diagnoses 21 diseases from 52 symptoms and signs with certainty factors. CLIPS has several unique features. It allows the facts in rules to be broken down to object-attribute-value (OAV) triples, allows rule-grouping, and fires rules based on pattern-matching. These features combined with the chained inference engine result to a natural user query system and speedy execution. In order to develop a method for automated knowledge acquisition, an Artificial Neural Expert System (ANES) is developed by a direct mapping from the CLIPS system. The ANES corn expert system uses the same OAV triples in the CLIPS system for its facts. The LHS and RHS facts of the CLIPS rules are mapped into the input and output layers of the ANES, respectively; and the inference engine of the rules is imbedded in the hidden layer. The fact representation by OAC triples gives a natural grouping of the rules. These features allow the ANES system to automate rule-generation, and make it efficient to execute and easy to expand for a large and complex domain.

  7. Effectiveness of a home-made meat based formula (the Rezza-Cardi diet) as a diagnostic tool in children with food-induced atopic dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Martino, F; Bruno, G; Aprigliano, D; Agolini, D; Guido, F; Giardini, O; Businco, L

    1998-11-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of a home-made meat based formula (the Rezza-Cardi diet), as a diagnostic tool for children with atopic dermatitis and suspected multiple food hypersensitivity. Severity scores for atopic dermatitis, body weight and serum lipid profile were evaluated at baseline and four weeks following the feeding with the home-made meat based formula in 16 children with atopic dermatitis and suspected multiple food hypersensitivity. The severity score of the skin lesions improved considerably in all the children; no significant difference was observed in the serum lipid levels before and after one month following the feeding with the home-made meat based formula. All children gained weight according to the Italian Standards. The results of this study indicate that the home-made meat based formula is a useful elimination diet in children with atopic dermatitis and suspected multiple food hypersensitivity. PMID:9920217

  8. A multi-trial diagnostic tool in fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus) skin biopsies of the Pelagos Sanctuary (Mediterranean Sea) and the Gulf of California (Mexico).

    PubMed

    Fossi, Maria Cristina; Urban, Jorge; Casini, Silvia; Maltese, Silvia; Spinsanti, Giacomo; Panti, Cristina; Porcelloni, Serena; Panigada, Simone; Lauriano, Giancarlo; Niño-Torres, Carlos; Rojas-Bracho, Lorenzo; Jimenez, Begoña; Muñoz-Arnanz, Juan; Marsili, Letizia

    2010-01-01

    The main objective of this study was to apply a set of sensitive non-lethal biomarkers in skin biopsies of fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) to evaluate the toxicological status of this mysticete in the Pelagos Sanctuary (Mediterranean Sea) and in the Gulf of California (Sea of Cortez-Mexico). We developed a "multi-trial diagnostic tool" (based on field and in vitro studies), combining molecular biomarkers (western blot of CYP1A1, CYP2B) and gene expression (qRT-PCR of HSP70, ERα, AHR, E2F-1) with the analysis of OCs, PAHs and PBDEs. The study revealed a higher level of toxicological stress in the Mediterranean fin whales. PMID:19913904

  9. Value of Quantitative and Qualitative Analyses of Circulating Cell-Free DNA as Diagnostic Tools for Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Wenjun; Mao, Yilei; Ge, Penglei; Yang, Huayu; Xu, Haifeng; Lu, Xin; Sang, Xinting; Zhong, Shouxian

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Qualitative and quantitative analyses of circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA) are potential methods for the detection of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Many studies have evaluated these approaches, but the results have been variable. This meta-analysis is the first to synthesize these published results and evaluate the use of circulating cfDNA values for HCC diagnosis. All articles that met our inclusion criteria were assessed using QUADAS guidelines after the literature research. We also investigated 3 subgroups in this meta-analysis: qualitative analysis of abnormal concentrations of circulating cfDNA; qualitative analysis of single-gene methylation alterations; and multiple analyses combined with alpha-fetoprotein (AFP). Statistical analyses were performed using the software Stata 12.0. We synthesized these published results and calculated accuracy measures (pooled sensitivity and specificity, positive/negative likelihood ratios [PLRs/NLRs], diagnostic odds ratios [DORs], and corresponding 95% confidence intervals [95% CIs]). Data were pooled using bivariate generalized linear mixed model. Furthermore, summary receiver operating characteristic curves and area under the curve (AUC) were used to summarize overall test performance. Heterogeneity and publication bias were also examined. A total of 2424 subjects included 1280 HCC patients in 22 studies were recruited in this meta-analysis. Pooled sensitivity and specificity, PLR, NLR, DOR, AUC, and CIs of quantitative analysis were 0.741 (95% CI: 0.610–0.840), 0.851 (95% CI: 0.718–0.927), 4.970 (95% CI: 2.694–9.169), 0.304 (95% CI: 0.205–0.451), 16.347 (95% CI: 8.250–32.388), and 0.86 (95% CI: 0.83–0.89), respectively. For qualitative analysis, the values were 0.538 (95% CI: 0.401–0.669), 0.944 (95% CI: 0.889–0.972), 9.545 (95% CI: 5.298–17.196), 0.490 (95% CI: 0.372–0.646), 19.491 (95% CI: 10.458–36.329), and 0.87 (95% CI: 0.84–0.90), respectively. After combining with AFP assay, the

  10. Particle-size evidence of estuary evolution: A rapid and diagnostic tool for determining the nature of recent saltmarsh accretion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rahman, Rubina; Plater, Andrew J.

    2014-05-01

    A conceptual model of saltmarsh sedimentation based on high-resolution particle-size analysis has been tested on short cores (c. 0.5 m) of known age from the Dee estuary, NW England, UK. Here, two components of the particle-size distribution (PSD) are interpreted as the traction load deposited by the faster tidal flow velocities ('fast tide') and the suspension load that settles during the turn of the tide ('slow tide'). The feasibility of this model for diagnosing the driving mechanism of estuary evolution in both time and space is tested with reference to historical evidence of saltmarsh accretion, up-core trends in dated saltmarsh cores, and the PSDs of present-day saltmarsh surface sediments. Cores that show an up-core progression from very fine-skewed to near symmetrical PSDs are interpreted in the context of estuary infilling due to a positive sediment budget (sediment surplus), whilst those that show a persistence of near-symmetrical, (very) poorly sorted, mesokurtic particle-size distributions in the fine to very fine silts size range are considered to be the result of 'slow tide' sedimentation. The influences of the two 'end-member' styles of saltmarsh accretion, i.e. (i) infilling due to sediment surplus and (ii) 'slow tide' settling linked to sea level, exhibit spatial and temporal trends as predicted, particularly in cores from mid- and lower saltmarsh locations. The upper saltmarsh cores also show evidence of estuary infilling due to 'slow tide' sedimentation at rates in excess of sea-level rise. The results confirm that the diagnostic approach can be applied as a 'pre-filtering' method for assessing the suitability of saltmarsh sediments for reconstructing sea-level trends, and for providing input data for improved estuary morphological modelling.

  11. Optical-fiber-coupled inferometric measurement of tympanic membrane temperature: a new diagnostic tool for acute otitis media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeRowe, Ari; Ophir, Eyal; Sade, Sharon; Fishman, Gadi; Ophir, Dov; Grankin, Mila; Katzir, Abraham

    1998-07-01

    A novel infrared (IR) transparent optical fiber coupled to a hand held otoscope and a radiometer was constructed and used to measure the temperatures of the tympanic membrane (TM) and to distinguish between diseased and healthy middle ears. A greater temperature difference between TM readings was found when Acute Otitis Media (AOM) existed in one of the ears examined. This supports the hypothesis that acute inflammation of the middle ear will result in elevated local temperature when measured in such a way that the reading is taken only from the TM without interference of the external canal. The use of an optical fiber enabled temperature measurements of the TM with high spatial resolution eliminating the external ear canal interference. A small patient population was examined and the initial results were statistically significant. In the hands of the primary care physician, this tool would prevent misdiagnosis of AOM preventing indiscriminate use of antibiotics and avoiding complications by early diagnosis.

  12. A molecular diagnostic tool to replace larval culture in conventional faecal egg count reduction testing in sheep.

    PubMed

    Roeber, Florian; Larsen, John W A; Anderson, Norman; Campbell, Angus J D; Anderson, Garry A; Gasser, Robin B; Jex, Aaron R

    2012-01-01

    The accurate diagnosis of parasitic nematode infections in livestock (including sheep and goats) is central to their effective control and the detection of the anthelmintic resistance. Traditionally, the faecal egg count reduction test (FECRT), combined with the technique of larval culture (LC), has been used widely to assess drug-susceptibility/resistance in strongylid nematodes. However, this approach suffers from a lack of specificity, sensitivity and reliability, and is time-consuming and costly to conduct. Here, we critically assessed a specific PCR assay to support FECRT, in a well-controlled experiment on sheep with naturally acquired strongylid infections known to be resistant to benzimidazoles. We showed that the PCR results were in close agreement with those of total worm count (TWC), but not of LC. Importantly, albendazole resistance detected by PCR-coupled FECRT was unequivocally linked to Teladorsagia circumcincta and, to lesser extent, Trichostrongylus colubriformis, a result that was not achievable by LC. The key findings from this study demonstrate that our PCR-coupled FECRT approach has major merit for supporting anthelmintic resistance in nematode populations. The findings also show clearly that our PCR assay can be used as an alternative to LC, and is more time-efficient and less laborious, which has important practical implications for the effective management and control strongylid nematodes of sheep. PMID:22629381

  13. TB diagnostic tests: how do we figure out their costs?

    PubMed

    Sohn, Hojoon; Minion, Jessica; Albert, Heidi; Dheda, Keertan; Pai, Madhukar

    2009-08-01

    Tuberculosis continues to be a major global health problem. Lack of accurate, rapid and cost-effective diagnostic tests poses a huge obstacle to global TB control. While several new diagnostic tools are being developed and evaluated for TB, it is important that new tools are introduced for widespread use only after careful validation of accuracy, impact as well as cost-effectiveness in real-world settings. While there are large numbers of studies on the accuracy of TB diagnostic tests, there are few studies that are focused on cost and cost-effectiveness. There are currently no widely accepted standards on how to evaluate costs of a TB test. In this review, we describe the basic approach for computing the costs of TB diagnostic tests, and provide templates for various data elements and parameters that go into the costing analysis. We hope this will pave the way for a standardized methodology for costing of TB diagnostic tests. Such a tool would enable improved and more generalizable costing analyses that can provide a strong foundation for more sophisticated economic analyses that evaluate the full economic and epidemiological impact resulting from the implementation and routine use of performance-verified new and innovative diagnostic tools. This, in turn, will facilitate evidence-based adoption and use of new diagnostics, especially in resource-limited settings. PMID:19681700

  14. Trypanosome infection in dromedary camels in Eastern Ethiopia: Prevalence, relative performance of diagnostic tools and host related risk factors.

    PubMed

    Fikru, Regassa; Andualem, Yimer; Getachew, Terefe; Menten, Joris; Hasker, Epco; Merga, Bekana; Goddeeris, Bruno Maria; Büscher, Philippe

    2015-07-30

    A cross-sectional study was conducted in Chifra and Dewe districts of Afar region, Eastern Ethiopia, to determine the prevalence, agreement between diagnostic tests and host related risk factors of trypanosome infection in camel. An overall prevalence of 2%, 24.1%, 21.3%, 9.5% and 7.8% was recorded with respectively Giemsa stained thin blood smear, CATT/T. evansi, RoTat1.2 PCR, 18S PCR and ITS-1PCR in a cohort of 399 animals. Only one T. vivax infection was confirmed by TvPRAC PCR indicating T. evansi as the predominant species affecting camels in the study area. No single animal was positive when tested with T. evansi type B specific EVAB PCR. There was slight agreement between the CATT/T. evansi and the molecular tests. Among the PCR methods, RoTat 1.2 PCR yielded a significantly higher positivity rate compared to 18S PCR and ITS-1 PCR. There was no significant difference in the positivity rate observed in each gender of camels (p>0.05). The positivity rate was significantly higher in camels with poor body condition and in older animals when tested using the CATT/T.evansi or RoTat 1.2 PCR (p>0.05). Camels that tested positive with all tests had significantly lower PCV's (p<0.05). This study provides further evidence that T. evansi is endemic in the Afar region of Ethiopia. The latent class analysis indicated an estimate overall prevalence of 19% (95% CI: 13-28). Moreover, the model indicated low sensitivity of CATT/T. evansi (43%) and the PCR tests (39-53%) but higher specificity of the PCR tests (86-99%) and low specificity of CATT/T. evansi (80%). This study suggests that improved sensitivity and reliability of the tests would help diagnosis of trypanosomosis. Further studies are required to determine the prevalence of clinical disease and losses due to trypanosomosis. PMID:26071981

  15. Pressure fluctuations as a diagnostic tool for fluidized beds. Technical progress report, July 1, 1996--September 30, 1996

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, R.C.; Brue, E.

    1996-10-10

    By studying pressure fluctuations using a system identification approach, it is hypothesized that circulating fluidized bed (CFB) pressure fluctuations are indicative of CFB hydrodynamics in two ways. First, the frequency phenomenon that is observed in the lower regions of the CFB under conditions of high solids loading is the result of lower dense bed voidage oscillations. Our results suggest that a surface wave phenomena inversely proportional to the square root of the bed diameter is also be observed in CFB pressure fluctuations under most conditions. By matching revised similitude parameters between two CFBs a number of conclusions can be drawn. First, spectral analysis of pressure fluctuations, if properly applied, can be used to verify that similitude has been achieved. To do this, not only must the Bode plot characteristics important for hydrodynamics be identified, but the pressure fluctuation structure at all elevations of the CFB must be similar. The set of similitude parameters defined by Glicksman is not sufficient to establish hydrodynamic similitude. The solids flux as typically measured in the downcomer does not contain information on the solids hold-up in the riser, or the amount of solids that progress downwards in the annulus rather than exit the riser. It is better to use the total mass contained in the riser as the important ``solids`` parameter for the establishment of similitude, rather than the solids flux. This measurement can be made more accurately, monitored continuously, and is a much simpler measurement to perform in most CFB systems. Even with this new set of dimensionless parameters, the differences in the coefficient of restitution of particle/bed collisions may make a significant difference in the CFB hydrodynamics. The effects of particle collisions with the riser top-plate must be considered in similitude studies.

  16. Polymeric micelles as a diagnostic tool for image-guided drug delivery and radiotherapy of HER2 overexpressing breast cancer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoang, Nu Bryan

    Block copolymer micelles have emerged as a viable formulation strategy with several drugs relying on this technology in clinical evaluation. To date, information on the tumor penetration and intratumoral distribution of block copolymer micelles (BCM) has been quite limited. Thus, there is impetus to develop a radiolabeled formulation that can be used to gain invaluable insight into the intratumoral distribution of the BCMs. This information could then be used to direct formulation strategies as a means to optimize treatment outcomes. This thesis describes the synthesis and characterization of a targeted block copolymer micelle system based on poly(ethylene glycol)-block -poly(epsilon-caprolactone) labeled with the radionuclide Indium-111 (111In). The incorporation of the imageable component, 111In permits pursuit of image-guided drug delivery for real-time monitoring of tumor localization and intratumoral distribution. Intracellular trafficking of drugs and therapies such as Auger electron emitting radionuclides to perinuclear and nuclear regions of cells is critical to realizing their full therapeutic potential. HER2 specific antibodies (trastuzumab fab fragments) and nuclear localization signal peptides were conjugated to the surface of the BCMs to direct uptake in HER2 expressing cells and subsequent localization in the cell nucleus. Cell uptake was HER2 density dependent, confirming receptor-mediated internalization of the BCMs. Importantly, conjugation of NLS resulted in a significant increase in nuclear uptake of the radionuclide 111In. Successful nuclear targeting was shown to improve the antiproliferative effect of the Auger electrons. In addition, a significant radiation enhancement effect was observed by concurrent delivery of low-dose MTX and 111In in all breast cancer cell lines evaluated. Imaging enabled the accurate quantification of the specific tumor uptake of the micelles and visualization of their degree of tumor penetration in relation to

  17. High-accuracy diagnostic tool for electron cloud observation in the LHC based on synchronous phase measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esteban Müller, J. F.; Baudrenghien, P.; Mastoridis, T.; Shaposhnikova, E.; Valuch, D.

    2015-11-01

    Electron cloud effects, which include heat load in the cryogenic system, pressure rise, and beam instabilities, are among the main intensity limitations for the LHC operation with 25 ns spaced bunches. A new observation tool was proposed and developed to monitor the e-cloud activity and it has already been used successfully during the LHC run 1 (2010-2012) and it is being intensively used in operation during the start of the LHC run 2 (2015-2018). It is based on the fact that the power loss of each bunch due to e-cloud can be estimated using bunch-by-bunch measurement of the synchronous phase. The measurements were done using the existing beam phase module of the low-level rf control system. In order to achieve the very high accuracy required, corrections for reflection in the cables and for systematic errors need to be applied followed by a post-processing of the measurements. Results clearly show the e-cloud buildup along the bunch trains and its time evolution during each LHC fill as well as from fill to fill. Measurements during the 2012 LHC scrubbing run reveal a progressive reduction in the e-cloud activity and therefore a decrease in the secondary electron yield. The total beam power loss can be computed as a sum of the contributions from all bunches and compared with the heat load deposited in the cryogenic system.

  18. Validation of a noninvasive diagnostic tool to verify neuter status in dogs: The urinary FSH to creatinine ratio.

    PubMed

    Albers-Wolthers, C H J; de Gier, J; Oei, C H Y; Schaefers-Okkens, A C; Kooistra, H S

    2016-09-15

    Determining the presence of functional gonadal tissue in dogs can be challenging, especially in bitches during anestrus or not known to have been ovariectomized, or in male dogs with nonscrotal testes. Furthermore, in male dogs treated with deslorelin, a slow-release GnRH agonist implant for reversible chemical castration, the verification of complete downregulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis can be difficult, especially if pretreatment parameters such as the size of the testes or prostate gland are not available. The aims of this study were to validate an immunoradiometric assay for measurement of FSH in canine urine, to determine if the urinary FSH to creatinine ratio can be used to verify the neuter status in bitches and male dogs, as an alternative to the plasma FSH concentration, and to determine if downregulation of the HPG axis is achieved in male dogs during deslorelin treatment. Recovery of added canine FSH and serial dilutions of urine reported that the immunoradiometric assay measures urinary FSH concentration accurately and with high precision. Plasma FSH concentrations (the mean of two samples, taken 40 minutes apart) and the urinary FSH to creatinine ratio were determined before gonadectomy and 140 days (median, range 121-225 days) and 206 days (median, range 158-294 days) after gonadectomy of 13 bitches and five male dogs, respectively, and in 13 male dogs before and 132 days (median, range 117-174 days) after administration of a deslorelin implant. In both bitches and male dogs, the plasma FSH concentration and the urinary FSH to creatinine ratio were significantly higher after gonadectomy, with no overlapping of their ranges. Receiver operating characteristic analysis of the urinary FSH to creatinine ratio revealed a cut-off value of 2.9 in bitches and 6.5 in males to verify the presence or absence of functional gonadal tissue. In male dogs treated with deslorelin, the plasma FSH concentrations and urinary FSH to

  19. Molecular Diagnostic Tools for Detection and Differentiation of Phytoplasmas Based on Chaperonin-60 Reveal Differences in Host Plant Infection Patterns

    PubMed Central

    Dumonceaux, Tim J.; Green, Margaret; Hammond, Christine; Perez, Edel; Olivier, Chrystel

    2014-01-01

    Phytoplasmas (‘Candidatus Phytoplasma’ spp.) are insect-vectored bacteria that infect a wide variety of plants, including many agriculturally important species. The infections can cause devastating yield losses by inducing morphological changes that dramatically alter inflorescence development. Detection of phytoplasma infection typically utilizes sequences located within the 16S–23S rRNA-encoding locus, and these sequences are necessary for strain identification by currently accepted standards for phytoplasma classification. However, these methods can generate PCR products >1400 bp that are less divergent in sequence than protein-encoding genes, limiting strain resolution in certain cases. We describe a method for accessing the chaperonin-60 (cpn60) gene sequence from a diverse array of ‘Ca.Phytoplasma’ spp. Two degenerate primer sets were designed based on the known sequence diversity of cpn60 from ‘Ca.Phytoplasma’ spp. and used to amplify cpn60 gene fragments from various reference samples and infected plant tissues. Forty three cpn60 sequences were thereby determined. The cpn60 PCR-gel electrophoresis method was highly sensitive compared to 16S-23S-targeted PCR-gel electrophoresis. The topology of a phylogenetic tree generated using cpn60 sequences was congruent with that reported for 16S rRNA-encoding genes. The cpn60 sequences were used to design a hybridization array using oligonucleotide-coupled fluorescent microspheres, providing rapid diagnosis and typing of phytoplasma infections. The oligonucleotide-coupled fluorescent microsphere assay revealed samples that were infected simultaneously with two subtypes of phytoplasma. These tools were applied to show that two host plants, Brassica napus and Camelina sativa, displayed different phytoplasma infection patterns. PMID:25551224

  20. The modified ultrasound pattern sum score mUPSS as additional diagnostic tool for genetically distinct hereditary neuropathies.

    PubMed

    Grimm, Alexander; Rasenack, Maria; Athanasopoulou, Ioanna M; Dammeier, Nele Maria; Lipski, Christina; Wolking, Stefan; Vittore, Debora; Décard, Bernhard F; Axer, Hubertus

    2016-02-01

    The objective of this study is to evaluate the nerve ultrasound characteristics in genetically distinct inherited neuropathies, the value of the modified ultrasound pattern sum score (mUPSS) to differentiate between the subtypes and the correlation of ultrasound with nerve conduction studies (NCS), disease duration and severity. All patients underwent a standardized neurological examination, ultrasound, and NCS. In addition, genetic testing was performed. Consequently, mUPSS was applied, which is a sum-score of cross-sectional areas (CSA) at predefined anatomical points in different nerves. 31 patients were included (10xCharcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT)1a, 3xCMT1b, 3xCMTX, 9xCMT2, 6xHNPP [Hereditary neuropathy with liability to pressure palsies]). Generalized, homogeneous nerve enlargement and significantly increased UPS scores emphasized the diagnosis of demyelinating neuropathy, particularly CMT1a and CMT1b. The amount of enlargement did not depend on disease duration, symptom severity, height and weight. In CMTX the nerves were enlarged, as well, however, only in the roots and lower limbs, most prominent in men. In CMT2 no significant enlargement was detectable. In HNPP the CSA values were increased at entrapped sites, and not elsewhere. However, a distinction from CMT1, which also showed enlarged CSA values at entrapment sites, was only possible by calculating the entrapment ratios and entrapment score. The mUPSS allowed distinction between CMT1a (increased UPS scores, entrapment ratios <1.0) and HNPP (low UPS scores, entrapment ratios >1.4), while CMT1b and CMTX showed intermediate UPS types and entrapment ratios <1.0. Although based on few cases, ultrasound revealed consistent and homogeneous nerve alteration in certain inherited neuropathies. The modified UPSS is a quantitative tool, which may provide useful information for diagnosis, differentiation and follow-up evaluation in addition to NCS and molecular testing. PMID:26559821

  1. Molecular diagnostic tools for detection and differentiation of phytoplasmas based on chaperonin-60 reveal differences in host plant infection patterns.

    PubMed

    Dumonceaux, Tim J; Green, Margaret; Hammond, Christine; Perez, Edel; Olivier, Chrystel

    2014-01-01

    Phytoplasmas ('Candidatus Phytoplasma' spp.) are insect-vectored bacteria that infect a wide variety of plants, including many agriculturally important species. The infections can cause devastating yield losses by inducing morphological changes that dramatically alter inflorescence development. Detection of phytoplasma infection typically utilizes sequences located within the 16S-23S rRNA-encoding locus, and these sequences are necessary for strain identification by currently accepted standards for phytoplasma classification. However, these methods can generate PCR products >1400 bp that are less divergent in sequence than protein-encoding genes, limiting strain resolution in certain cases. We describe a method for accessing the chaperonin-60 (cpn60) gene sequence from a diverse array of 'Ca.Phytoplasma' spp. Two degenerate primer sets were designed based on the known sequence diversity of cpn60 from 'Ca.Phytoplasma' spp. and used to amplify cpn60 gene fragments from various reference samples and infected plant tissues. Forty three cpn60 sequences were thereby determined. The cpn60 PCR-gel electrophoresis method was highly sensitive compared to 16S-23S-targeted PCR-gel electrophoresis. The topology of a phylogenetic tree generated using cpn60 sequences was congruent with that reported for 16S rRNA-encoding genes. The cpn60 sequences were used to design a hybridization array using oligonucleotide-coupled fluorescent microspheres, providing rapid diagnosis and typing of phytoplasma infections. The oligonucleotide-coupled fluorescent microsphere assay revealed samples that were infected simultaneously with two subtypes of phytoplasma. These tools were applied to show that two host plants, Brassica napus and Camelina sativa, displayed different phytoplasma infection patterns. PMID:25551224

  2. An integrated data analysis tool for improving measurements on the MST RFP

    SciTech Connect

    Reusch, L. M. Galante, M. E.; Johnson, J. R.; McGarry, M. B.; Den Hartog, D. J.; Franz, P.; Stephens, H. D.

    2014-11-15

    Many plasma diagnostics contain complementary information. For example, the double-foil soft x-ray system (SXR) and the Thomson Scattering diagnostic (TS) on the Madison Symmetric Torus both measure electron temperature. The complementary information from these diagnostics can be combined using a systematic method based on integrated data analysis techniques, leading to more accurate and sensitive results. An integrated data analysis tool based on Bayesian probability theory was able to estimate electron temperatures that are consistent with both the SXR and TS diagnostics and more precise than either. A Markov Chain Monte Carlo analysis to increase the flexibility of the tool was implemented and benchmarked against a grid search method.

  3. Optical diagnostics in the oral cavity: an overview

    PubMed Central

    Wilder-Smith, P; Holtzman, J; Epstein, J; Le, A

    2014-01-01

    As the emphasis shifts from damage mitigation to disease prevention or reversal of early disease in the oral cavity, the need for sensitive and accurate detection and diagnostic tools become more important. Many novel and emergent optical diagnostic modalities for the oral cavity are becoming available to clinicians with a variety of desirable attributes including: (i) non-invasiveness, (ii) absence of ionizing radiation, (iii) patient-friendliness, (iv) real-time information (v) repeatability, and (vi) high-resolution surface and subsurface images. In this article, the principles behind optical diagnostic approaches, their feasibility and applicability for imaging soft and hard tissues, and their potential usefulness as a tool in the diagnosis of oral mucosal lesions, dental pathologies, and other dental applications will be reviewed. The clinical applications of light-based imaging technologies in the oral cavity and of their derivative devices will be discussed to provide the reader with a comprehensive understanding of emergent diagnostic modalities. PMID:20561224

  4. A Simple Evaluation Tool (ET-CET) Indicates Increase of Diagnostic Skills From Small Bowel Capsule Endoscopy Training Courses: A Prospective Observational European Multicenter Study.

    PubMed

    Albert, J G; Humbla, O; McAlindon, M E; Davison, C; Seitz, U; Fraser, C; Hagenmüller, F; Noetzel, E; Spada, C; Riccioni, M E; Barnert, J; Filmann, N; Keuchel, M

    2015-10-01

    Small bowel capsule endoscopy (SBCE) has become a first line diagnostic tool. Several training courses with a similar format have been established in Europe; however, data on learning curve and training in SBCE remain sparse.Between 2008 and 2011, different basic SBCE training courses were organized internationally in UK (n = 2), Italy (n = 2), Germany (n = 2), Finland (n = 1), and nationally in Germany (n = 10), applying similar 8-hour curricula with 50% lectures and 50% hands-on training. The Given PillCam System was used in 12 courses, the Olympus EndoCapsule system in 5, respectively. A simple evaluation tool for capsule endoscopy training (ET-CET) was developed using 10 short SBCE videos including relevant lesions and normal or irrelevant findings. For each video, delegates were required to record a diagnosis (achievable total score from 0 to 10) and the clinical relevance (achievable total score 0 to 10). ET-CET was performed at baseline before the course and repeated, with videos in altered order, after the course.Two hundred ninety-four delegates (79.3% physicians, 16.3% nurses, 4.4% others) were included for baseline analysis, 268 completed the final evaluation. Forty percent had no previous experience in SBCE, 33% had performed 10 or less procedures. Median scores for correct diagnosis improved from 4.0 (IQR 3) to 7.0 (IQR 3) during the courses (P < 0.001, Wilcoxon), and for correct classification of relevance of the lesions from 5.0 (IQR 3) to 7.0 (IQR 3) (P < 0.001), respectively. Improvement was not dependent on experience, profession, SBCE system, or course setting. Previous experience in SBCE was associated with higher baseline scores for correct diagnosis (P < 0.001; Kruskal-Wallis). Additionally, independent nonparametric partial correlation with experience in gastroscopy (rho 0.33) and colonoscopy (rho 0.27) was observed (P < 0.001).A simple ET-CET demonstrated significant improvement of diagnostic skills on

  5. High Energy Laser Diagnostic Sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luke, James R.; Goddard, Douglas N.; Lewis, Jay; Thomas, David

    2010-10-01

    Recent advancements in high energy laser (HEL) sources have outpaced diagnostic tools capable of accurately quantifying system performance. Diagnostic tools are needed that allow system developers to measure the parameters that define HEL effectiveness. The two critical parameters for quantifying HEL effectiveness are the irradiance on target and resultant rise in target temperature. Off-board sensing has its limitations, including unpredictable changes in the reflectivity of the target, smoke and outgassing, and atmospheric distortion. On-board sensors overcome the limitations of off-board techniques but must survive high irradiance levels and extreme temperatures. We have developed sensors for on-target diagnostics of high energy laser beams and for the measurement of the thermal response of the target. The conformal sensors consist of an array of quantum dot photodetectors and resistive temperature detectors. The sensor arrays are lithographically fabricated on flexible substrates and can be attached to a variety of laser targets. We have developed a nanoparticle adhesive process that provides good thermal contact with the target and that ensures the sensor remains attached to the target for as long as the target survives. We have calibrated the temperature and irradiance sensors and demonstrated them in a HEL environment.

  6. Use of Universal 16S rRNA Gene PCR as a Diagnostic Tool for Venous Access Port-Related Bloodstream Infections

    PubMed Central

    Marín, M.; Martín-Rabadán, P.; Echenagusia, A.; Camúñez, F.; Rodríguez-Rosales, G.; Simó, G.; Echenagusia, M.; Bouza, E.

    2013-01-01

    Amplification of the universal 16S rRNA gene using PCR has improved the diagnostic yield of microbiological samples. However, no data have been reported on the reliability of this technique with venous access ports (VAPs). We assessed the utility of 16S rRNA PCR for the prediction of VAP-related bloodstream infection (VAP-RBSI). During a 2-year period, we prospectively received all VAPs removed by interventional radiologists. PCR and conventional cultures were performed using samples from the different VAP sites. We compared the results of PCR with those of conventional culture for patients with confirmed VAP-RBSI. We collected 219 VAPs from 219 patients. Conventional VAP culture revealed 15 episodes of VAP-RBSI. PCR revealed a further 4 episodes in patients undergoing antibiotic therapy which would have gone undetected using conventional culture. Moreover, it had a negative predictive value of 97.8% for the prediction of VAP-RBSI when it was performed using biofilm from the internal surface of the port. In conclusion, universal 16S rRNA PCR performed with samples from the inside of VAPs proved to be a useful tool for the diagnosis of VAP-RBSI. It increased detection of VAP-RBSI episodes by 21.1% in patients undergoing antibiotic therapy whose episodes would have gone undetected using conventional culture. Therefore, we propose a new application of 16S rRNA PCR as a useful tool for the diagnosis of VAP-RBSI in patients receiving antibiotic therapy. PMID:23254136

  7. Fluorescence lifetime imaging of DAPI-stained nuclei as a novel diagnostic tool for the detection and classification of B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

    PubMed

    Yahav, Gilad; Hirshberg, Abraham; Salomon, Ophira; Amariglio, Ninette; Trakhtenbrot, Luba; Fixler, Dror

    2016-07-01

    B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (B-CLL) and B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (B-ALL) are the most common type of leukaemia in adults and children, respectively. Today, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) is the standard for detecting chromosomal aberrations that reflect adverse and favorable outcome. This study revealed a new, simple, and fast diagnostic tool to detect pathological cells by measuring and imaging the fluorescence lifetime (FLT) using FLT imaging microscopy (FLIM) of the peripheral blood (PB) cells of B-CLL samples that were labeled with the DNA binder, DAPI. The FLT of DAPI in healthy individuals was found to be 2.66 ± 0.12 ns. In contrast, PB cells of B-CLL and BM cells of B-ALL patients were characterized by a specific group distribution of the FLT values. The FLT of DAPI was divided into four subgroups, relative to 2.66 ns: short+, normal, prolonged, and prolonged+. These alterations could be related to different chromatin arrangements of B-CLL and B-ALL interphase nuclei. Notably, extremely long FLT of nuclear DAPI correlate with the presence of extra chromosome 12, while moderate increases compared to normal characterize the deletion of p53. Such correlations potentially enable a FLT-based rapid automatic diagnosis and classification of B-CLL even when the frequency of genetic and chromosomal abnormalities is low. © 2016 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry. PMID:27315046

  8. Quantum cascade laser based monitoring of CF{sub 2} radical concentration as a diagnostic tool of dielectric etching plasma processes

    SciTech Connect

    Hübner, M.; Lang, N.; Röpcke, J.; Helden, J. H. van; Zimmermann, S.; Schulz, S. E.; Buchholtz, W.

    2015-01-19

    Dielectric etching plasma processes for modern interlevel dielectrics become more and more complex by the introduction of new ultra low-k dielectrics. One challenge is the minimization of sidewall damage, while etching ultra low-k porous SiCOH by fluorocarbon plasmas. The optimization of this process requires a deeper understanding of the concentration of the CF{sub 2} radical, which acts as precursor in the polymerization of the etch sample surfaces. In an industrial dielectric etching plasma reactor, the CF{sub 2} radical was measured in situ using a continuous wave quantum cascade laser (cw-QCL) around 1106.2 cm{sup −1}. We measured Doppler-resolved ro-vibrational absorption lines and determined absolute densities using transitions in the ν{sub 3} fundamental band of CF{sub 2} with the aid of an improved simulation of the line strengths. We found that the CF{sub 2} radical concentration during the etching plasma process directly correlates to the layer structure of the etched wafer. Hence, this correlation can serve as a diagnostic tool of dielectric etching plasma processes. Applying QCL based absorption spectroscopy opens up the way for advanced process monitoring and etching controlling in semiconductor manufacturing.

  9. Development of sero-diagnostic and molecular tools for the control of important tick-borne pathogens of cattle in Africa.

    PubMed

    Morzaria, S P; Katende, J; Musoke, A; Nene, V; Skilton, R; Bishop, R

    1999-09-01

    Tick-borne diseases (TBDs) are a major economic constraint to livestock production in sub-Saharan Africa. ILRI is focussing on developing a range of products, such as vaccines, diagnostics and decision support services to underpin improved control programmes against these diseases. We have developed three highly sensitive and specific enzyme linked immuno-assays (ELISAs), which allow precise diagnosis of Theileria parva, Babesia bigemina and Anaplasma marginale. These tests have been standardised and validated using defined experimental and field infection sera. Parasite specific recombinant antigens and monoclonal antibodies against bovine immunoglobulins as secondary antibodies have played an important role in in enhancing the sensitivity and specificity of the assays. They have been further evaluated in on-farm longitudinal sero-epidemiological studies to define infection dynamics and disease risks in various farming systems in Kenya and Uganda. In addition, DNA-based tests for differentiation of Theileria species and characterisation of Theileria parva stocks have been developed. These tests have been derived through physical mapping and sequencing of key elements of the T. parva genome, which include repetitive and telomeric regions, minisatellite sequences, antigen genes and a number of random DNA sequences. These tools are currently being deployed in conjunction with field immunisation programmes to determine the biological impact of introducing live vaccines of T. parva on population dynamics. PMID:11071549

  10. Neuropsychopharmacology and Neurogenetic Aspects of Executive Functioning: Should Reward Gene Polymorphisms Constitute a Diagnostic Tool to Identify Individuals at Risk for Impaired Judgment?

    PubMed Central

    Bowirrat, Abdalla; Chen, Thomas JH; Oscar-Berman, Marlene; Madigan, Margaret; Chen, Amanda LH; Bailey, John A.; Braverman, Eric R.; Kerner, Mallory; Giordano, John; Morse, Siohban; Downs, B. William; Waite, Roger L.; Fornari, Frank; Armaly, Zaher; Blum, Kenneth

    2013-01-01

    Executive functions are processes that act in harmony to control behaviors necessary for maintaining focus and achieving outcomes. Executive dysfunction in neuropsychiatric disorders is attributed to structural or functional pathology of brain networks involving prefrontal cortex (PFC) and its connections with other brain regions. The PFC receives innervations from different neurons associated with a number of neurotransmitters, especially dopamine (DA). Here we review findings on the contribution of PFC DA to higher-order cognitive and emotional behaviors. We suggest examination of multifactorial interactions of an individual’s genetic history, along with environmental risk factors, can assist in the characterization of executive functioning for that individual. Based upon the results of genetic studies we also propose genetic mapping as a probable diagnostic tool serving as a therapeutic adjunct for augmenting executive functioning capabilities. We conclude that preservation of the neurological underpinnings of executive functions requires the integrity of complex neural systems including the influence of specific genes and associated polymorphisms to provide adequate neurotransmission. PMID:22371275

  11. Comparison of the time behavior in the separation of light and heavy materials in X-ray backscattered method as a diagnostic tool in inspection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faezeh, Rahmani; Sepideh Sadat, Azimi; Esmaiel, Bayat; Vahid, Dost Mohammadi

    2016-03-01

    X-ray backscattered method based on Compton backscattering is used in the inspection field. In contrast to transmission method, source and detectors are positioned on one side of the target, so in the situation that transmission inspection is difficult, X-ray backscattered method can be provided suitable data in the inspection field. Also, detection of hidden explosives and narcotic materials are very difficult or impossible in transmission methods. High intensity backscattered beam from light materials (low-Z), such as explosives and narcotics, in comparison to the heavy materials (high-Z), made this method as the strong technique in inspection. X-ray and gamma photons scattered by the light material (such as PE and PTFE) as well as heavy material (such as Fe and Cu) were studied using MCNPX2.6 Monte Carlo code. The results showed that rise time of pulse from light materials are slower than that of from heavy materials due to multi scattering of low energy photons in the light ones, so time expansion would occur in signals from light elements. If measurement is possible, the difference in time behavior can be used as a novel method in complementary diagnostic tool beside the use of pulse height in X-ray backscattered method.

  12. Evaluation of 18F-FDG PET/CT as a diagnostic imaging and staging tool for feline oral squamous cell carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Randall, E K; Kraft, S L; Yoshikawa, H; LaRue, S M

    2016-03-01

    18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography combined with computed tomography (18FDG-PET/CT) has been shown to be effective for staging human oral squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) but its application for cats with oral SCC is unknown. Twelve cats with biopsy-proven oral SCC were imaged with whole body 18FDG-PET/CT to determine its value as a diagnostic imaging and staging tool and fine needle aspirates were obtained of accessible regional lymph nodes. All tumors were FDG avid and conspicuous on 18FDG-PET/CT images, with an average of the maximum standardized uptake value 9.88 ± 5.33 SD (range 2.9-24.9). Soft tissue infiltrative tumors that were subtle and ill defined on CT were highly visible and more extensive on FDG-PET/CT. Tumors invading the osseous structures were more similar in extent on 18FDG-PET/CT and CT although they were more conspicuous on PET images. Three cytologically confirmed metastases were hypermetabolic on PET, while two of those metastases were equivocal on CT. PMID:23782408

  13. Evaluating diagnostic tests.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Ashley Graham

    2016-08-01

    Although much has been written on the role of randomized controlled trials and mechanistic reasoning in the evaluation of therapeutic treatments, philosophers of medicine have not yet turned their attention to the question of how diagnostic tests and procedures should be evaluated. I aim to begin to fill this gap by examining each of the following questions: What is the best way to determine the accuracy of a diagnostic test? What is the best way to determine the clinical effectiveness of a diagnostic test? Can an accurate diagnostic test be considered medically valuable even if it is not clinically effective? I argue that while diagnostic accuracy is a minimum requirement for both clinical effectiveness and medical value, accuracy and effectiveness are not sufficient for determining the value of a diagnostic test, because diagnostic value extends beyond patient outcomes. PMID:27091221

  14. QuantiGene Plex Represents a Promising Diagnostic Tool for Cell-of-Origin Subtyping of Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma.

    PubMed

    Hall, John S; Usher, Suzanne; Byers, Richard J; Higgins, Rebekah C; Memon, Danish; Radford, John A; Linton, Kim M

    2015-07-01

    Emerging therapies targeting the molecularly distinct GCB and non-GCB/ABC subtypes of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) have created the need to develop an accurate subtyping assay for routine use. We investigated the potential of QuantiGene Plex (QGP)-branched DNA signal amplification assay-for DLBCL subtyping. We performed in silico analysis of public DLBCL datasets to develop and validate a naïve Bayes classifier, and migrated the resulting 21-gene classifier to QGP and real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) assays. Forty DLBCL formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tumors of known subtype (20 per subtype by gene expression profiling of paired fresh-frozen tissues) were reclassified, and results for QGP (on 38/40 for 21/21 targets) and qPCR (on 40/40 samples for 19/21 targets) compared for recapitulation of microarray data and classification accuracy. The 21-gene bayesian classifier achieved mean area under the curve values >0.9 on independent validation. QGP showed a higher correlation with microarray data (mean R(2) = 0.66 ± 0.05 versus 0.34 ± 0.07; P < 0.0001) and classification accuracy (92.1% versus 78.9%). The proportion of validated targets was also higher for QGP (85.7% versus 47.4%). The QGP protocol was rapid and simple to perform, at a cost similar to qPCR. These promising preliminary results strongly support ongoing work to develop a QGP companion diagnostic assay for DLBCL subtyping. PMID:25982535

  15. [New diagnostic tools for arrhythmias].

    PubMed

    Teres, C; Burri, H

    2015-05-27

    Cardiac arrhythmias are common conditions that often manifest themselves intermittently, thus complicating their diagnosis, particularly in the ambulatory setting. Recently, technological advances have facilitated public access to health applications and devices. This article reviews the available technologies and analyses their usefulness for the diagnosis of arrhythmias in the context of everyday clinical practice. PMID:26182638

  16. Isolation and Characterization of Monoclonal Antibodies Against a Virion Core Protein of Orf Virus Strain NA1/11 As Potential Diagnostic Tool for Orf Viruses.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiaoping; Zhang, Jiafeng; Hao, Wenbo; Peng, Yongzheng; Li, Hong; Li, Wei; Li, Ming; Luo, Shuhong

    2015-08-01

    Orf is caused by the orf virus (ORFV) and is a non-systemic, widespread disease afflicting sheep, goats, wild ruminants, and humans. Recent outbreaks in sheep and goats in Jilin and other northern Chinese provinces raise concerns about orf control in China. Thirty-five hybridoma clones were constructed from splenocytes of BALB/c mice immunized with natural orf virus protein. These hybridomas were used to produce antibodies targeting ORFV proteins. Immunological characterization of these monoclonal antibodies (MAb) showed that the 5F2D8 hybridoma line produced MAb that can recognize the 100, 70, and 20 kDa bands from total viral lysate. This hybridoma was further characterized by immunoprecipitation and peptide sequencing. The results indicate that 5F2D8 specifically recognizes orf virus encoded protein ORFV086, a late expression virion core protein that plays important roles in progeny virus particle assembly, morphogenesis, and maturity. Further experiments demonstrate that this MAb did not react with other viral proteins of ORFV orthopoxviruses, but reacted strongly to different field isolates of orf viruses from China. Additionally, this anti-ORFV086 MAb possesses ORFV neutralizing capability. Sequence alignments and phylogenetic analysis determined that ORFV086 of NA1/11, clustered together with NZ2 and IA82, is highly conserved and has structural similarities with the Vaccinia virus core protein P4a. As such, this MAb has great potential as a diagnostic tool for orf viruses, in the further exploration of orf pathogenesis, and in disease control and prevention. PMID:26301926

  17. "Saba"--application of knowledge and state-of-the-art technologies in the field of psychiatry for development of new diagnostics prevention and therapeutic tools for schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Kielan, Krzysztof; Kucharska-Pietura, Katarzyna; Warchala, Anna; Konopka, Marek; Pieniazek, Piotr; Hartel, Marcin

    2004-01-01

    The aim of project is to build a European network, which will integrate the research capabilities of a group of research institutes and university departments to provide an infrastructure for the highest quality research in psychiatric disorders, particularly in schizophrenia and schizoaffective disturbances. This network will integrate original computer expert advisory system called "Saba" with modern brain imaging techniques and neurophysiological methods, which allows for the delineation of specific subtypes and particular episodes of mental disorders and their neural bases will be studied by state-of-the art (high tech) imaging techniques. This approach will lead to new investigatory, diagnostic and therapeutic techniques. Together the members of this network will comprise an unmatched critical mass of human and other resources aimed at fundamental and applied research into a group of disorders, which impose a huge burden on social and material capital. The relationships and mutual responsibilities between neuroscience and the society it serves will be addressed specifically. Top brain research is performed at several locations in Europe. In particular, in the area of linking classical psychiatric and psychological assessment methods and the newest brain imaging techniques in mental disorders, major progress can only be made when various research groups join their efforts. Large-scale studies using different databases are critically required, which demands standardization of the description of mental disorders and of the applied techniques and methods of analysis. Imaging techniques, including functional MRI (fMRI), Evoked Potentials (EPs), brain mapping, and the computer gathered information will be shared, standardized and further developed within the network. Developing new information technology tools for simulation, visualization and data-mining will be required to enable effective search for links between mental disorders and brain characteristics

  18. Identification of Helicobacter pylori and the cagA genotype in gastric biopsies using highly sensitive real-time PCR as a new diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Shiho; Kato, Shunji; Matsukura, Norio; Ohtani, Masahiro; Ito, Yoshiyuki; Suto, Hiroyuki; Yamazaki, Yukinao; Yamakawa, Akiyo; Tokudome, Shinkan; Higashi, Hideaki; Hatakeyama, Masanori; Azuma, Takeshi

    2005-06-01

    The CagA protein is one of the virulence factors of Helicobacter pylori, and two major subtypes of CagA have been observed, the Western and East Asian type. CagA is injected from the bacteria into gastric epithelial cells, undergoes tyrosine phosphorylation, and binds to Src homology 2 domain-containing protein-tyrosine phosphatase SHP-2. The East Asian type CagA binds to SHP-2 more strongly than the Western type CagA. Here, we tried to distinguish the CagA type by highly sensitive real-time PCR with the objective of establishing a system to detect H. pylori and CagA subtypes from gastric biopsies. We designed primers and probe sets for Western or East Asian-cagA at Western-specific or East Asian-specific sequence regions, respectively, and H. pylori 16S rRNA. We could detect the H. pylori 16S rRNA gene, Western and East Asian-cagA gene from DNA of gastric biopsies. The sensitivity and specificity for H. pylori infection was 100% in this system. In Thai patients, 87.8% (36/41) were cagA-positive; 26.8% (11/41) were Western-cagA positive and 53.7% (22/41) were East Asian-cagA positive, while 7.3% (3/41) reacted with both types of cagA. These results suggest that this real-time PCR system provides a highly sensitive assessment of CagA type as a new diagnostic tool for the pathogenicity of H. pylori infection. PMID:15907447

  19. Analysis of the Vaginal Microbiome by Next-Generation Sequencing and Evaluation of its Performance as a Clinical Diagnostic Tool in Vaginitis

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Ki Ho; Hong, Sung Kuk; Cho, Sung Im; Ra, Eunkyung; Han, Kyung Hee; Kang, Soon Beom; Kim, Eui-Chong; Park, Sung Sup

    2016-01-01

    Background Next-generation sequencing (NGS) can detect many more microorganisms of a microbiome than traditional methods. This study aimed to analyze the vaginal microbiomes of Korean women by using NGS that included bacteria and other microorganisms. The NGS results were compared with the results of other assays, and NGS was evaluated for its feasibility for predicting vaginitis. Methods In total, 89 vaginal swab specimens were collected. Microscopic examinations of Gram staining and microbiological cultures were conducted on 67 specimens. NGS was performed with GS junior system on all of the vaginal specimens for the 16S rRNA, internal transcribed spacer (ITS), and Tvk genes to detect bacteria, fungi, and Trichomonas vaginalis. In addition, DNA probe assays of the Candida spp., Gardnerella vaginalis, and Trichomonas vaginalis were performed. Various predictors of diversity that were obtained from the NGS data were analyzed to predict vaginitis. Results ITS sequences were obtained in most of the specimens (56.2%). The compositions of the intermediate and vaginitis Nugent score groups were similar to each other but differed from the composition of the normal score group. The fraction of the Lactobacillus spp. showed the highest area under the curve value (0.8559) in ROC curve analysis. The NGS and DNA probe assay results showed good agreement (range, 86.2-89.7%). Conclusions Fungi as well as bacteria should be considered for the investigation of vaginal microbiome. The intermediate and vaginitis Nugent score groups were indistinguishable in NGS. NGS is a promising diagnostic tool of the vaginal microbiome and vaginitis, although some problems need to be resolved. PMID:27374709

  20. Prospective assessment of rapid diagnostic tests for the detection of antibodies to hepatitis C virus, a tool for improving access to care.

    PubMed

    Chevaliez, S; Poiteau, L; Rosa, I; Soulier, A; Roudot-Thoraval, F; Laperche, S; Hézode, C; Pawlotsky, J-M

    2016-05-01

    Large-scale hepatitis C screening is required to prevent further spread of the infection, improve access to care in the context of new hepatitis C virus (HCV) drug regimens without interferon-alpha and subsequently reduce the risk of long-term complications of chronic liver disease. Rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) represent an attractive alternative to enzyme immunoassay using blood from venepuncture. The aim of the present study was to prospectively assess the clinical performance of CE-marked RDTs detecting anti-HCV antibodies in fingerstick capillary whole blood and/or oral fluid. A total of 513 individuals, including 318 patients with chronic HCV infection, 25 patients with resolved HCV infection and 170 HCV-seronegative individuals, were prospectively enrolled. The specificity of RDTs with fingerstick whole blood varied from 98.8% to 100%. The clinical sensitivity was high for the OraQuick(®) and Toyo(®) tests (99.4% and 95.8%, respectively), but low for the Labmen(®) test (63.1%). The specificity and clinical sensitivity in crevicular fluid were both satisfactory for the OraQuick(®) test (100% and 97.6%, respectively). HCV antibody RDTs were easy and rapid to perform in the context of patient care. They were highly specific. Both the OraQuick(®) and Toyo(®) tests reached the expected level of performance for wide-scale use, with a performance advantage for the OraQuick(®) HCV test. RDTs appear to be a promising new tool for wide-scale screening of HCV infection in high-risk to medium-risk populations. Hence, careful assessment of the performance of HCV RDTs must be recommended before they can be implemented in clinical practice. PMID:26806260

  1. Rasch Analysis of the Premature Ejaculation Diagnostic Tool (PEDT) and the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF) in an Iranian Sample of Prostate Cancer Patients

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Chung-Ying; Pakpour, Amir H.; Burri, Andrea; Montazeri, Ali

    2016-01-01

    Background Male sexual dysfunction is an increasing problem across a variety of general and clinical populations, such as cancer populations; especially among prostate cancer patients who tend to receive treatments that often result in erectile dysfunction (ED) and/or premature ejaculation (PE). Therefore, in order to diagnose ED and PE in these populations, adequate and efficient instruments such as the International Index of Erectile Function 5-item version (IIEF-5) and the Premature Ejaculation Diagnostic Tool (PEDT) are needed. However, since this is an important topic additional evidence of psychometric properties of the IIEF-5 and the PEDT in such samples are required. Thus the aim of the present study was to use Rasch models to investigate the construct validity, local dependency, score order, and differential item functioning (DIF) of both questionnaires in a sample of prostate cancer patients. Methods Prostate cancer patients (n = 1058, mean±SD age = 64.07±6.84 years) who visited urology clinics were invited to fill out the IIEF-5 and the PEDT. Construct validity was examined using infit and outfit mean square (MnSq) and local dependency using correlations between each two residual Rasch scores. Score order was investigated using step and average measures of difficulty and DIF using DIF contrast. Results All IIEF-5 and PEDT items had acceptable infit and outfit MnSq. Step measures revealed that all but two items had disordered categories in terms of scores 1 to 3. Only one local dependency was found, and no items displayed DIF across age, educational level, and help seeking. Conclusions The results showed that both the IIEF-5 and the PEDT had sound psychometric properties in the Rasch analyses, although some score disordering could be detected in both instruments. The results of no DIF items in both instruments suggest using them to compare ED and PE across age and educational level is adequate. PMID:27336626

  2. Accurate cloud-based smart IMT measurement, its validation and stroke risk stratification in carotid ultrasound: A web-based point-of-care tool for multicenter clinical trial.

    PubMed

    Saba, Luca; Banchhor, Sumit K; Suri, Harman S; Londhe, Narendra D; Araki, Tadashi; Ikeda, Nobutaka; Viskovic, Klaudija; Shafique, Shoaib; Laird, John R; Gupta, Ajay; Nicolaides, Andrew; Suri, Jasjit S

    2016-08-01

    . Statistical tests were performed to demonstrate consistency, reliability and accuracy of the results. The proposed AtheroCloud™ system is completely reliable, automated, fast (3-5 seconds depending upon the image size having an internet speed of 180Mbps), accurate, and an intelligent, web-based clinical tool for multi-center clinical trials and routine telemedicine clinical care. PMID:27318571

  3. First all-in-one diagnostic tool for DNA intelligence: genome-wide inference of biogeographic ancestry, appearance, relatedness, and sex with the Identitas v1 Forensic Chip.

    PubMed

    Keating, Brendan; Bansal, Aruna T; Walsh, Susan; Millman, Jonathan; Newman, Jonathan; Kidd, Kenneth; Budowle, Bruce; Eisenberg, Arthur; Donfack, Joseph; Gasparini, Paolo; Budimlija, Zoran; Henders, Anjali K; Chandrupatla, Hareesh; Duffy, David L; Gordon, Scott D; Hysi, Pirro; Liu, Fan; Medland, Sarah E; Rubin, Laurence; Martin, Nicholas G; Spector, Timothy D; Kayser, Manfred

    2013-05-01

    When a forensic DNA sample cannot be associated directly with a previously genotyped reference sample by standard short tandem repeat profiling, the investigation required for identifying perpetrators, victims, or missing persons can be both costly and time consuming. Here, we describe the outcome of a collaborative study using the Identitas Version 1 (v1) Forensic Chip, the first commercially available all-in-one tool dedicated to the concept of developing intelligence leads based on DNA. The chip allows parallel interrogation of 201,173 genome-wide autosomal, X-chromosomal, Y-chromosomal, and mitochondrial single nucleotide polymorphisms for inference of biogeographic ancestry, appearance, relatedness, and sex. The first assessment of the chip's performance was carried out on 3,196 blinded DNA samples of varying quantities and qualities, covering a wide range of biogeographic origin and eye/hair coloration as well as variation in relatedness and sex. Overall, 95 % of the samples (N = 3,034) passed quality checks with an overall genotype call rate >90 % on variable numbers of available recorded trait information. Predictions of sex, direct match, and first to third degree relatedness were highly accurate. Chip-based predictions of biparental continental ancestry were on average ~94 % correct (further support provided by separately inferred patrilineal and matrilineal ancestry). Predictions of eye color were 85 % correct for brown and 70 % correct for blue eyes, and predictions of hair color were 72 % for brown, 63 % for blond, 58 % for black, and 48 % for red hair. From the 5 % of samples (N = 162) with <90 % call rate, 56 % yielded correct continental ancestry predictions while 7 % yielded sufficient genotypes to allow hair and eye color prediction. Our results demonstrate that the Identitas v1 Forensic Chip holds great promise for a wide range of applications including criminal investigations, missing person investigations, and for national security

  4. An emerging micro-scale immuno-analytical diagnostic tool to see the unseen. Holding promise for precision medicine and P4 medicine.

    PubMed

    Guzman, Norberto A; Guzman, Daniel E

    2016-05-15

    Over the years, analytical chemistry and immunology have contributed significantly to the field of clinical diagnosis by introducing quantitative techniques that can detect crucial and distinct chemical, biochemical and cellular biomarkers present in biosamples. Currently, quantitative two-dimensional hybrid immuno-analytical separation technologies are emerging as powerful tools for the sequential isolation, separation and detection of protein panels, including those with subtle structural changes such as variants, isoforms, peptide fragments, and post-translational modifications. One such technique to perform this challenging task is immunoaffinity capillary electrophoresis (IACE), which combines the use of antibodies and/or other affinity ligands as highly selective capture agents with the superior resolving power of capillary electrophoresis. Since affinity ligands can be polyreactive, i.e., binding and capturing more than one molecule, they may generate false positive results when tested under mono-dimensional procedures; one such application is enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). IACE, on the other hand, is a two-dimensional technique that captures (isolation and enrichment), releases, separates and detects (quantification, identification and characterization) a single or a panel of analytes from a sample, when coupled to one or more detectors simultaneously, without the presence of false positive or false negative data. This disruptive technique, capable of preconcentrate on-line results in enhanced sensitivity even in the analysis of complex matrices, may change the traditional system of testing biomarkers to obtain more accurate diagnosis of diseases, ideally before symptoms of a specific disease manifest. In this manuscript, we will present examples of the determination of biomarkers by IACE and the design of a miniaturized multi-dimensional IACE apparatus capable of improved sensitivity, specificity and throughput, with the potential of being used

  5. Diagnostics for studies of novel laser ion acceleration mechanisms

    SciTech Connect

    Senje, Lovisa; Aurand, Bastian; Wahlström, Claes-Göran; Yeung, Mark; Kuschel, Stephan; Rödel, Christian; Wagner, Florian; Roth, Markus; Li, Kun; Neumayer, Paul; Dromey, Brendan; Jung, Daniel; Bagnoud, Vincent; Zepf, Matthew; Kuehl, Thomas

    2014-11-15

    Diagnostic for investigating and distinguishing different laser ion acceleration mechanisms has been developed and successfully tested. An ion separation wide angle spectrometer can simultaneously investigate three important aspects of the laser plasma interaction: (1) acquire angularly resolved energy spectra for two ion species, (2) obtain ion energy spectra for multiple species, separated according to their charge to mass ratio, along selected axes, and (3) collect laser radiation reflected from and transmitted through the target and propagating in the same direction as the ion beam. Thus, the presented diagnostic constitutes a highly adaptable tool for accurately studying novel acceleration mechanisms in terms of their angular energy distribution, conversion efficiency, and plasma density evolution.

  6. Diagnostics for pulmonary tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Cudahy, Patrick; Shenoi, Sheela V

    2016-04-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) remains a leading cause of human suffering and mortality despite decades of effective treatment being available. Accurate and timely diagnosis remains an unmet goal. The HIV epidemic has also led to new challenges in the diagnosis of TB. Several new developments in TB diagnostics have the potential to positively influence the global campaign against TB. We aim to review the performance of both established as well as new diagnostics for pulmonary TB in adults, and discuss the ongoing challenges. PMID:27005271

  7. Diagnostics for pulmonary tuberculosis

    PubMed Central

    Cudahy, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) remains a leading cause of human suffering and mortality despite decades of effective treatment being available. Accurate and timely diagnosis remains an unmet goal. The HIV epidemic has also led to new challenges in the diagnosis of TB. Several new developments in TB diagnostics have the potential to positively influence the global campaign against TB. We aim to review the performance of both established as well as new diagnostics for pulmonary TB in adults, and discuss the ongoing challenges. PMID:27005271

  8. Monitoring bone strontium levels of an osteoporotic subject due to self-administration of strontium citrate with a novel diagnostic tool, in vivo XRF: a case study.

    PubMed

    Moise, H; Adachi, J D; Chettle, D R; Pejović-Milić, A

    2012-07-01

    A previously developed in vivo X-ray fluorescence (IVXRF) I-125 based system was used to measure bone strontium levels non-invasively in an osteoporotic female volunteer. The volunteer was recruited in December 2008, as part of the Ryerson and McMaster University Strontium in Bone Research Study and measured at twice weekly, weekly and monthly intervals. Thirty minute measurements were taken at the finger and ankle bone sites, representing primarily cortical and trabecular bone, respectively and the strontium K-alpha X-ray peak at 14.16 keV was used in the analysis. Since the volunteer had no prior history of strontium based medications or supplementation, baseline natural strontium levels were obtained followed by a 24h measurement of first intake of strontium citrate supplements (680 mg Sr/day). While the baseline levels of 0.38 ± 0.05 and 0.39 ± 0.10 for the finger and ankle, respectively, were on par with those previously reported in Caucasians among twenty-two healthy non-supplementing strontium individuals by our group, an increase began to be seen after 24 hrs of 0.62 ± 0.14 and 0.45 ± 0.12 for the finger and ankle, respectively. By 120 h, the increase was statistically significant at 0.68 ± 0.07 and 0.93 ± 0.05, respectively. Further increases occurred within an interval of 90-180 days, with the most recent, after 800 days, at the finger and ankle being 7 and 15 times higher than the initial baseline reading. The intriguing results show bone strontium incorporation and retention follow a pattern, suggesting strontium levels, at least in the ankle, do not plateau within two to three years and will continue to increase over time, as an individual takes strontium supplements. The ability of this IVXRF system to monitor and measure bone strontium levels over time provides a useful diagnostic tool to help gain insight into strontium bone kinetics. PMID:22549020

  9. European Surveillance Network for Influenza in Pigs: Surveillance Programs, Diagnostic Tools and Swine Influenza Virus Subtypes Identified in 14 European Countries from 2010 to 2013

    PubMed Central

    Simon, Gaëlle; Larsen, Lars E.; Dürrwald, Ralf; Foni, Emanuela; Harder, Timm; Van Reeth, Kristien; Markowska-Daniel, Iwona; Reid, Scott M.; Dan, Adam; Maldonado, Jaime; Huovilainen, Anita; Billinis, Charalambos; Davidson, Irit; Agüero, Montserrat; Vila, Thaïs; Hervé, Séverine; Breum, Solvej Østergaard; Chiapponi, Chiara; Urbaniak, Kinga; Kyriakis, Constantinos S.; Brown, Ian H.; Loeffen, Willie

    2014-01-01

    Swine influenza causes concern for global veterinary and public health officials. In continuing two previous networks that initiated the surveillance of swine influenza viruses (SIVs) circulating in European pigs between 2001 and 2008, a third European Surveillance Network for Influenza in Pigs (ESNIP3, 2010–2013) aimed to expand widely the knowledge of the epidemiology of European SIVs. ESNIP3 stimulated programs of harmonized SIV surveillance in European countries and supported the coordination of appropriate diagnostic tools and subtyping methods. Thus, an extensive virological monitoring, mainly conducted through passive surveillance programs, resulted in the examination of more than 9 000 herds in 17 countries. Influenza A viruses were detected in 31% of herds examined from which 1887 viruses were preliminary characterized. The dominating subtypes were the three European enzootic SIVs: avian-like swine H1N1 (53.6%), human-like reassortant swine H1N2 (13%) and human-like reassortant swine H3N2 (9.1%), as well as pandemic A/H1N1 2009 (H1N1pdm) virus (10.3%). Viruses from these four lineages co-circulated in several countries but with very different relative levels of incidence. For instance, the H3N2 subtype was not detected at all in some geographic areas whereas it was still prevalent in other parts of Europe. Interestingly, H3N2-free areas were those that exhibited highest frequencies of circulating H1N2 viruses. H1N1pdm viruses were isolated at an increasing incidence in some countries from 2010 to 2013, indicating that this subtype has become established in the European pig population. Finally, 13.9% of the viruses represented reassortants between these four lineages, especially between previous enzootic SIVs and H1N1pdm. These novel viruses were detected at the same time in several countries, with increasing prevalence. Some of them might become established in pig herds, causing implications for zoonotic infections. PMID:25542013

  10. Novel physico-chemical diagnostic tools for high throughput identification of bovine mastitis associated gram-positive, catalase-negative cocci

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The routine diagnosis of Streptococcus spp. and other mastitis associated gram-positive, catalase-negative cocci is still based upon biochemical tests and serological methods, which frequently provide ambiguous identification results. We therefore aimed to establish an accurate identification system for differential diagnosis of mastitis associated Streptococcus spp. and related species using biophysical techniques such as Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and MALDI – TOF/MS. Results Based on a panel of 210 isolates from cases of bovine mastitis, an unsupervised FTIR spectral reference library was established and an artificial neural network (ANN) - assisted identification system was developed. All bacterial isolates were previously identified by species-specific PCR and/or 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. An overall identification rate of 100% at species level for 173 strains unknown to the ANN and the library was achieved by combining ANN and the spectral database, thus demonstrating the suitability of our FTIR identification system for routine diagnosis. In addition, we investigated the potential of matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) for the identification of mastitis associated Streptococcus spp. and related bacteria. Using the Microflex LT System, MALDI Biotyper software™ (V3.3) we achieved an accuracy rate of 95.2%. A blind study, including 21 clinical samples from dairy cows, revealed a 100% correct species identification rate for FTIR and 90.5% for MALDI-TOF MS, indicating that these techniques are valuable tools for diagnosis. Conclusions This study clearly demonstrates that FTIR spectroscopy as well as MALDI-TOF MS can significantly improve and facilitate the identification and differentiation of mastitis associated Streptococcus spp. and related species. Although the FTIR identification system turned out being slightly superior to MALDI-TOF MS in terms of identification

  11. Essential veterinary education in modern molecular tools for the detection of disease: what veterinarians will need to know about genomics and molecular biology and diagnostics (including bioterrorist weapons) in 2025.

    PubMed

    de Lamballerie, X

    2009-08-01

    Future veterinary education programmes in microbiology will undoubtedly include an increasing emphasis on new and existing molecular tools. They should also, however, provide veterinarians with a comprehensive and clear understanding of the types of results that can be obtained using a particular approach (for example, specific diagnostic procedures as against open diagnostic procedures, phenotypic versus genotypic characterisation, etc.). Furthermore, students should gain a sound knowledge of which type of test is the most appropriate in a given clinical or epidemiological situation, and what conclusions can or cannot be drawn from the results. Consequently, each veterinary curriculum should focus on the following items: the principles of molecular biology and genomics; the detection of disease and characteristics of molecular tests; the principles of micro-organism taxonomy, sequence comparison and molecular epidemiology and their applications (such as: taxonomic identification, epidemiological survey, genetic evolution and the traceability of strains); and the role of the veterinarian in the field of zoonoses and human public health. PMID:20128476

  12. SveDem, the Swedish Dementia Registry – A Tool for Improving the Quality of Diagnostics, Treatment and Care of Dementia Patients in Clinical Practice

    PubMed Central

    Religa, Dorota; Fereshtehnejad, Seyed-Mohammad; Cermakova, Pavla; Edlund, Ann-Katrin; Garcia-Ptacek, Sara; Granqvist, Nicklas; Hallbäck, Anne; Kåwe, Kerstin; Farahmand, Bahman; Kilander, Lena; Mattsson, Ulla-Britt; Nägga, Katarina; Nordström, Peter; Wijk, Helle; Wimo, Anders; Winblad, Bengt; Eriksdotter, Maria

    2015-01-01

    Background The Swedish Dementia Registry (SveDem) was developed with the aim to improve the quality of diagnostic work-up, treatment and care of patients with dementia disorders in Sweden. Methods SveDem is an internet based quality registry where several indicators can be followed over time. It includes information about the diagnostic work-up, medical treatment and community support (www.svedem.se). The patients are diagnosed and followed-up yearly in specialist units, primary care centres or in nursing homes. Results The database was initiated in May 2007 and covers almost all of Sweden. There were 28 722 patients registered with a mean age of 79.3 years during 2007–2012. Each participating unit obtains continuous online statistics from its own registrations and they can be compared with regional and national data. A report from SveDem is published yearly to inform medical and care professionals as well as political and administrative decision-makers about the current quality of diagnostics, treatment and care of patients with dementia disorders in Sweden. Conclusion SveDem provides knowledge about current dementia care in Sweden and serves as a framework for ensuring the quality of diagnostics, treatment and care across the country. It also reflects changes in quality dementia care over time. Data from SveDem can be used to further develop the national guidelines for dementia and to generate new research hypotheses. PMID:25695768

  13. A research protocol for developing a Point-Of-Care Key Evidence Tool ‘POCKET’: a checklist for multidimensional evidence reporting on point-of-care in vitro diagnostics

    PubMed Central

    Huddy, Jeremy R; Ni, Melody; Mavroveli, Stella; Barlow, James; Williams, Doris-Ann; Hanna, George B

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Point-of-care in vitro diagnostics (POC-IVD) are increasingly becoming widespread as an acceptable means of providing rapid diagnostic results to facilitate decision-making in many clinical pathways. Evidence in utility, usability and cost-effectiveness is currently provided in a fragmented and detached manner that is fraught with methodological challenges given the disruptive nature these tests have on the clinical pathway. The Point-of-care Key Evidence Tool (POCKET) checklist aims to provide an integrated evidence-based framework that incorporates all required evidence to guide the evaluation of POC-IVD to meet the needs of policy and decisionmakers in the National Health Service (NHS). Methods and analysis A multimethod approach will be applied in order to develop the POCKET. A thorough literature review has formed the basis of a robust Delphi process and validation study. Semistructured interviews are being undertaken with POC-IVD stakeholders, including industry, regulators, commissioners, clinicians and patients to understand what evidence is required to facilitate decision-making. Emergent themes will be translated into a series of statements to form a survey questionnaire that aims to reach a consensus in each stakeholder group to what needs to be included in the tool. Results will be presented to a workshop to discuss the statements brought forward and the optimal format for the tool. Once assembled, the tool will be field-tested through case studies to ensure validity and usability and inform refinement, if required. The final version will be published online with a call for comments. Limitations include unpredictable sample representation, development of compromise position rather than consensus, and absence of blinding in validation exercise. Ethics and dissemination The Imperial College Joint Research Compliance Office and the Imperial College Hospitals NHS Trust R&D department have approved the protocol. The checklist tool will be

  14. Grading More Accurately

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rom, Mark Carl

    2011-01-01

    Grades matter. College grading systems, however, are often ad hoc and prone to mistakes. This essay focuses on one factor that contributes to high-quality grading systems: grading accuracy (or "efficiency"). I proceed in several steps. First, I discuss the elements of "efficient" (i.e., accurate) grading. Next, I present analytical results…

  15. Accurate transfer of soft tissue morphology with interim prosthesis to definitive cast.

    PubMed

    Noh, Kwantae; Kwon, Kung-Rock; Kim, Hyeong-Seob; Kim, Duck-Su; Pae, Ahran

    2014-02-01

    With conventional fixed dental prostheses, the interim restoration is a valuable diagnostic tool in the evaluation of esthetics and function. To achieve predictable definitive esthetic results, information about the subgingival and the supragingival contour of a properly designed restoration should be communicated to the dental laboratory technician. The technique described enables the accurate transfer of the soft tissue morphology developed with an interim prosthesis to the definitive cast. This modified definitive cast allows the dental laboratory technician to fabricate a restoration with an emergence profile identical to that of the interim prosthesis. PMID:24286639

  16. Region of interest identification and diagnostic agreement in breast pathology.

    PubMed

    Nagarkar, Dilip B; Mercan, Ezgi; Weaver, Donald L; Brunyé, Tad T; Carney, Patricia A; Rendi, Mara H; Beck, Andrew H; Frederick, Paul D; Shapiro, Linda G; Elmore, Joann G

    2016-09-01

    A pathologist's accurate interpretation relies on identifying relevant histopathological features. Little is known about the precise relationship between feature identification and diagnostic decision making. We hypothesized that greater overlap between a pathologist's selected diagnostic region of interest (ROI) and a consensus derived ROI is associated with higher diagnostic accuracy. We developed breast biopsy test cases that included atypical ductal hyperplasia (n=80); ductal carcinoma in situ (n=78); and invasive breast cancer (n=22). Benign cases were excluded due to the absence of specific abnormalities. Three experienced breast pathologists conducted an independent review of the 180 digital whole slide images, established a reference consensus diagnosis and marked one or more diagnostic ROIs for each case. Forty-four participating pathologists independently diagnosed and marked ROIs on the images. Participant diagnoses and ROI were compared with consensus reference diagnoses and ROI. Regression models tested whether percent overlap between participant ROI and consensus reference ROI predicted diagnostic accuracy. Each of the 44 participants interpreted 39-50 cases for a total of 1972 individual diagnoses. Percent ROI overlap with the expert reference ROI was higher in pathologists who self-reported academic affiliation (69 vs 65%, P=0.002). Percent overlap between participants' ROI and consensus reference ROI was then classified into ordinal categories: 0, 1-33, 34-65, 66-99 and 100% overlap. For each incremental change in the ordinal percent ROI overlap, diagnostic agreement increased by 60% (OR 1.6, 95% CI (1.5-1.7), P<0.001) and the association remained significant even after adjustment for other covariates. The magnitude of the association between ROI overlap and diagnostic agreement increased with increasing diagnostic severity. The findings indicate that pathologists are more likely to converge with an expert reference diagnosis when they identify an

  17. A novel molecular diagnostic tool for improved sensitivity and reliability detection of “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus”, bacterium associated with huanglongbing (HLB) bacterium Candidatus Liberibacter.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sensitive and accurate detection is a prerequisite for efficient management and regulatory responses to prevent the introduction and spread of HLB-associated “Candidatus Liberibacter species to unaffected areas. To improve the current detection limit of HLB-associated “Ca. Liberibacter” spp, we deve...

  18. Accurate monotone cubic interpolation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huynh, Hung T.

    1991-01-01

    Monotone piecewise cubic interpolants are simple and effective. They are generally third-order accurate, except near strict local extrema where accuracy degenerates to second-order due to the monotonicity constraint. Algorithms for piecewise cubic interpolants, which preserve monotonicity as well as uniform third and fourth-order accuracy are presented. The gain of accuracy is obtained by relaxing the monotonicity constraint in a geometric framework in which the median function plays a crucial role.

  19. Accurate Finite Difference Algorithms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goodrich, John W.

    1996-01-01

    Two families of finite difference algorithms for computational aeroacoustics are presented and compared. All of the algorithms are single step explicit methods, they have the same order of accuracy in both space and time, with examples up to eleventh order, and they have multidimensional extensions. One of the algorithm families has spectral like high resolution. Propagation with high order and high resolution algorithms can produce accurate results after O(10(exp 6)) periods of propagation with eight grid points per wavelength.

  20. Integrated diagnostics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunthausen, Roger J.

    1988-01-01

    Recently completed projects in which advanced diagnostic concepts were explored and/or demonstrated are summarized. The projects begin with the design of integrated diagnostics for the Army's new gas turbine engines, and advance to the application of integrated diagnostics to other aircraft subsystems. Finally, a recent project is discussed which ties together subsystem fault monitoring and diagnostics with a more complete picture of flight domain knowledge.

  1. Diagnostic recognition of facial changes associated with chronic conditions: use of an e-learning tool to enhance medical student education.

    PubMed

    McKenna, Danielle; Wilkinson, Caroline; Ker, Jean

    2010-06-16

    Facial characteristics serve as reliable indicators of numerous diseases, and their recognition can assist junior medical students in making an accurate diagnosis. At present, however, there is little data to support the incorporation of physiognomy in medical education. This pilot study involved the design, implementation and evaluation of e-learning tutorials as a means of teaching students to appreciate how careful observation of facial characteristics can enhance diagnosis. PMID:20557153

  2. [Neuropsychological assessment early after stroke--an overview of diagnostic instruments available in German and introduction of a new screening tool].

    PubMed

    Kaesberg, S; Fink, G R; Kalbe, E

    2013-09-01

    Stroke-induced neuropsychological sequelae are frequent and highly relevant for the patient's prognosis, so that their diagnostic assessment at an early point in time is highly advisable to allow for the initiation of appropriate treatment. Because stroke patients in the acute and sub-acute phase of a stroke often show a general slowing and restricted resilience, investigation may be limited and is often only manageable by means of instruments that can be used at bedside. Preferably such neuropsychological tests should also be normalised for the target group. An overview of the neuropsychological instruments available in German, which were developed for or applied to stroke patients in the early phases of stroke and rehabilitation, is provided here. One of the nine instruments presented is the newly developed Cologne Neuropsychological Screening for Stroke Patients (German: Kölner Neuropsychologisches Screening für Schlaganfall-Patienten), which is introduced here. The instruments differ in form of investigation, duration, material volume and standardisation. The choice of a particular instrument in a given clinical or scientific context explicitly depends on the diagnostic goal as well as the resilience of the patient. PMID:23986457

  3. Visual Detection of Human Antibodies Using Sugar Chain-Immobilized Fluorescent Nanoparticles: Application as a Point of Care Diagnostic Tool for Guillain-Barré Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Shinchi, Hiroyuki; Yuki, Nobuhiro; Ishida, Hideharu; Hirata, Koichi; Wakao, Masahiro; Suda, Yasuo

    2015-01-01

    Sugar chain binding antibodies have gained substantial attention as biomarkers due to their crucial roles in various disorders. In this study, we developed simple and quick detection method of anti-sugar chain antibodies in sera using our previously developed sugar chain-immobilized fluorescent nanoparticles (SFNPs) for the point-of-care diagnostics. Sugar chain structure on SFNPs was modified with the sugar moieties of the GM1 ganglioside via our original linker molecule to detect anti-GM1 antibodies. The structures and densities of the sugar moieties immobilized on the nanoparticles were evaluated in detail using lectins and sera containing anti-GM1 antibodies from patients with Guillain-Barré syndrome, a neurological disorder, as an example of disease involving anti-sugar chain antibodies. When optimized SFNPs were added to sera from patients with Guillain-Barré syndrome, fluorescent aggregates were able to visually detect under UV light in three hours. The sensitivity of the detection method was equivalent to that of the current ELISA method used for the diagnosis of Guillain-Barré syndrome. These results suggest that our method using SFNPs is suitable for the point-of-care diagnostics of diseases involving anti-sugar chain antibodies. PMID:26378448

  4. Use of a Process Analysis Tool for Diagnostic Study on Fine Particulate Matter Predictions in the U.S.-Part II: Analysis and Sensitivity Simulations

    EPA Science Inventory

    Following the Part I paper that described an application of the U.S. EPA Models-3/Community Multiscale Air Quality (CMAQ) modeling system to the 1999 Southern Oxidants Study episode, this paper presents results from process analysis (PA) using the PA tool embedded in CMAQ and s...

  5. Results of a multicentre randomised controlled trial of statistical process control charts and structured diagnostic tools to reduce ward-acquired meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus: the CHART Project.

    PubMed

    Curran, E; Harper, P; Loveday, H; Gilmour, H; Jones, S; Benneyan, J; Hood, J; Pratt, R

    2008-10-01

    Statistical process control (SPC) charts have previously been advocated for infection control quality improvement. To determine their effectiveness, a multicentre randomised controlled trial was undertaken to explore whether monthly SPC feedback from infection control nurses (ICNs) to healthcare workers of ward-acquired meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (WA-MRSA) colonisation or infection rates would produce any reductions in incidence. Seventy-five wards in 24 hospitals in the UK were randomised into three arms: (1) wards receiving SPC chart feedback; (2) wards receiving SPC chart feedback in conjunction with structured diagnostic tools; and (3) control wards receiving neither type of feedback. Twenty-five months of pre-intervention WA-MRSA data were compared with 24 months of post-intervention data. Statistically significant and sustained decreases in WA-MRSA rates were identified in all three arms (P<0.001; P=0.015; P<0.001). The mean percentage reduction was 32.3% for wards receiving SPC feedback, 19.6% for wards receiving SPC and diagnostic feedback, and 23.1% for control wards, but with no significant difference between the control and intervention arms (P=0.23). There were significantly more post-intervention 'out-of-control' episodes (P=0.021) in the control arm (averages of 0.60, 0.28, and 0.28 for Control, SPC and SPC+Tools wards, respectively). Participants identified SPC charts as an effective communication tool and valuable for disseminating WA-MRSA data. PMID:18723251

  6. Acoustic Radiation Force Impulse Elastography: A Useful Tool for Differential Diagnosis of Thyroid Nodules and Recommending Fine-Needle Aspiration: A Diagnostic Accuracy Study.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yi-Feng; Xu, Jun-Mei; Xu, Hui-Xiong; Liu, Chang; Bo, Xiao-Wan; Li, Xiao-Long; Guo, Le-Hang; Liu, Bo-Ji; Liu, Lin-Na; Xu, Xiao-Hong

    2015-10-01

    To investigate the diagnostic performance of combined use of conventional ultrasound (US) and elastography, including conventional strain elastography such as elasticity imaging (EI) and acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) elastography, and to evaluate their usefulness in recommending fine-needle aspiration (FNA).A total of 556 pathologically proven thyroid nodules were evaluated by US, EI, and ARFI examinations in this study. Three blinded readers scored the likelihood of malignancy for 4 datasets (ie, US alone, US and EI, US and virtual touch tissue imaging [VTI], and US and virtual touch tissue quantification [VTQ]). The diagnostic performances of 4 datasets in differentiating malignant from benign thyroid nodules were evaluated. The decision-making changes for FNA recommendation in the indeterminate nodules or the probably benign nodules on conventional US were evaluated after review of elastography.The diagnostic performance in terms of area under the ROC curve did not show any change after adding EI, VTI, or VTQ for analysis; and no differences were found among different readers; however, the specificity and positive predictive value (PPV) improved significantly after adding VTI or VTQ for analysis in the senior reader. For the indeterminate nodules on US that were pathologically benign, VTQ made correct decision-making changes from FNA biopsy to follow-up in a mean of 82.6% nodules, which was significantly higher than those achieved by EI (46.8%) and VTI (54.4%) (both P < 0.05). With regard to the probably benign nodules on US that were pathologically malignant, EI made the highest correct decision-making change from follow-up to FNA biopsy in a mean of 62.6% nodules (compared with 41.5% on VTQ, P < 0.05).The results indicated that ARFI increases the specificity and PPV in diagnosing thyroid nodules. US combined VTQ might be helpful in reducing unnecessary FNA for indeterminate nodules on US whereas US combined EI is useful to detect the false negative

  7. CLASSIFICATION FRAMEWORK FOR DIAGNOSTICS RESEARCH

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of Diagnostics Research is to provide tools to simplify diagnosis of the causes of biological impairment, in support of State and Tribe 303(d) impaired waters lists. The Diagnostics Workgroup has developed conceptual models for four major aquatic stressors that cause im...

  8. Student Interpretations of Diagnostic Feedback

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Doe, Christine

    2015-01-01

    Diagnostic assessment is increasingly being recognized as a potentially beneficial tool for teaching and learning (Jang, 2012). There have been calls in the research literature for students to receive diagnostic feedback and for researchers to investigate how such feedback is used by students. Therefore, this study examined how students…

  9. A simple diagnostic tool for the investigation of persistent phenomena with application to the summer 1980 U.S. heat wave

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolfson, Noah; Atlas, Robert

    1986-01-01

    A simple and readily-computed index for diagnostic and numerical weather prediction studies of heat waves and other persistent anomalies has been developed. The index takes into account the two important factors of intensity and persistence and it is highly correlated to the surface air temperature on a variety of time-scales. The utilization of this index for investigating the severe, summer 1980 U.S. heat wave and drought results in an instructive description of the spatial and temporal development of the phenomenon. An assessment of the skill of the Goddard Laboratory for Atmospheres (GLA) model in forecasting the initiation and breakdown of the heat wave in terms of the index is also illustrated.

  10. Accurate measurement of time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Itano, Wayne M.; Ramsey, Norman F.

    1993-07-01

    The paper discusses current methods for accurate measurements of time by conventional atomic clocks, with particular attention given to the principles of operation of atomic-beam frequency standards, atomic hydrogen masers, and atomic fountain and to the potential use of strings of trapped mercury ions as a time device more stable than conventional atomic clocks. The areas of application of the ultraprecise and ultrastable time-measuring devices that tax the capacity of modern atomic clocks include radio astronomy and tests of relativity. The paper also discusses practical applications of ultraprecise clocks, such as navigation of space vehicles and pinpointing the exact position of ships and other objects on earth using the GPS.

  11. Accurate quantum chemical calculations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bauschlicher, Charles W., Jr.; Langhoff, Stephen R.; Taylor, Peter R.

    1989-01-01

    An important goal of quantum chemical calculations is to provide an understanding of chemical bonding and molecular electronic structure. A second goal, the prediction of energy differences to chemical accuracy, has been much harder to attain. First, the computational resources required to achieve such accuracy are very large, and second, it is not straightforward to demonstrate that an apparently accurate result, in terms of agreement with experiment, does not result from a cancellation of errors. Recent advances in electronic structure methodology, coupled with the power of vector supercomputers, have made it possible to solve a number of electronic structure problems exactly using the full configuration interaction (FCI) method within a subspace of the complete Hilbert space. These exact results can be used to benchmark approximate techniques that are applicable to a wider range of chemical and physical problems. The methodology of many-electron quantum chemistry is reviewed. Methods are considered in detail for performing FCI calculations. The application of FCI methods to several three-electron problems in molecular physics are discussed. A number of benchmark applications of FCI wave functions are described. Atomic basis sets and the development of improved methods for handling very large basis sets are discussed: these are then applied to a number of chemical and spectroscopic problems; to transition metals; and to problems involving potential energy surfaces. Although the experiences described give considerable grounds for optimism about the general ability to perform accurate calculations, there are several problems that have proved less tractable, at least with current computer resources, and these and possible solutions are discussed.

  12. Expression and Purification of the Recombinant Cytochrome P450 CYP141 Protein of Mycobacterium Tuberculosis as a Diagnostic Tool and Vaccine Production

    PubMed Central

    Heidari, Reza; Rabiee-Faradonbeh, Mohammad; Darban-Sarokhalil, Davood; Alvandi, Amirhooshang; Abdian, Narges; Aryan, Ehsan; Soleimani, Neda; Gholipour, Abolfazl

    2015-01-01

    Background: Tuberculosis (TB) is regarded as a health problem worldwide, particularly in developing countries. Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) is the cause of this disease. Approximately two billion people worldwide are infected by M. tuberculosis and annually about two million individuals die in consequence. Forty million people are estimated to die because of M. tuberculosis over the next 25 years if the measures for controlling this infection are not extensively developed. In the vaccination field, Bacillus Calmette–Guérin (BCG) is still the most effective vaccine but it shows no efficacy in adult pulmonary patients. One of the other problems regarding TB is its appropriate diagnosis. Objectives: In this experimental study, the recombinant cytochrome P450 CYP141 protein of M. tuberculosis was expressed and purified to be used as a vaccine candidate and diagnostic purpose in subsequent investigations. Materials and Methods: The optimization of the cytochrome P450 CYP141 protein expression was evaluated in different conditions. Then, this protein was purified with a resin column of nickel–nitrilotriacetic acid and investigated via Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate Polyacrylamide Gel Electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) and Western Blotting. Results: The highest expression of the cytochrome P450 CYP141 protein was obtained by the addition of 1 mM of isopropyl β-D-1-thiogalactopyranoside (IPTG) to the bacterial culture grown to an optical density at 600 nm (OD600) of 0.6, 16 hours after induction. This protein was subsequently purified with a purification of higher than 80%. The results of Western Blotting indicated that the purified protein was specifically detected. Conclusions: In this experimental study, for the first time in Iran the expression and purification of this recombinant protein was done successfully. This recombinant protein could be used as a vaccine candidate and diagnostic purpose in subsequent investigations. PMID:26380105

  13. Using Rapid Diagnostic Tests as a Source of Viral RNA for Dengue Serotyping by RT-PCR - A Novel Epidemiological Tool

    PubMed Central

    Vongsouvath, Manivanh; Phommasone, Koukeo; Sengvilaipaseuth, Onanong; Kosoltanapiwat, Nathamon; Chantratita, Narisara; Blacksell, Stuart D.; Lee, Sue J.; de Lamballerie, Xavier; Mayxay, Mayfong; Keomany, Sommay; Newton, Paul N.; Dubot-Pérès, Audrey

    2016-01-01

    Background Dengue virus infection causes major public health problems in tropical and subtropical areas. In many endemic areas, including the Lao PDR, inadequate access to laboratory facilities is a major obstacle to surveillance and study of dengue epidemiology. Filter paper is widely used for blood collection for subsequent laboratory testing for antibody and nucleic acid detection. For the first time, we demonstrate that dengue viral RNA can be extracted from dengue rapid diagnostic tests (RDT) and then submitted to real-time RT-PCR for serotyping. Methodology/Principal Findings We evaluated the Standard Diagnostics (SD) Bioline Dengue Duo RDT, a commonly used test in dengue endemic areas. First, using the QIAamp RNA kit, dengue RNA was purified from the sample pad of the NS1 RDT loaded with virus isolates of the four serotypes, then quantified by RT-PCR. We observed greater recovery of virus, with a mean of 27 times more RNA recovered from RDT, than from filter paper. Second, we evaluated dengue NS1 RDTs from patients at Mahosot Hospital, Vientiane, (99 patients) and from rural Salavan Provincial Hospital (362 patients). There was good agreement between dengue RT-PCR from NS1 RDT with RT-PCR performed on RNA extracted from patient sera, either using RDT loaded with blood (82.8% and 91.4%, in Vientiane and Salavan, respectively) or serum (91.9% and 93.9%). There was 100% concordance between RDT and serum RT-PCR of infecting dengue serotype. Conclusions/Significance Therefore, the collection of NS1 positive RDTs, which do not require cold storage, may be a novel approach for dengue serotyping by RT-PCR and offers promising prospects for the collection of epidemiological data from previously inaccessible tropical areas to aid surveillance and public health interventions. PMID:27159058

  14. Analysis of NAD(P)H fluorescence components in cardiac myocytes from human biopsies: a new tool to improve diagnostics of rejection of transplanted patients

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Y.; Mateasik, A.; Poirier, N.; Miró, J.; Dahdah, N.; Chorvat, D., Jr.; Chorvatova, A.

    2009-02-01

    Tissue autofluorescence is one of the most versatile non-invasive tools for mapping the metabolic state in living tissues. Increasing interest in the imaging and diagnosis of living cells and tissues, based on their intrinsic fluorescence rather than fluorescence labeling, is closely connected to the latest developments in high-performance spectroscopic and microscopic techniques. We investigate metabolic state of cardiac cells isolated from one additional human biopsy from transplanted pediatric patients presenting either no rejection (R0) or mild rejection (R1). Two different approaches for isolation of human cardiac myocytes are also compared. Spectrally-resolved fluorescence lifetime detection of NAD(P)H fluorescence (excitation by pulsed 375 nm picosecond laser) is tested as a promising new tool for quantitative analysis of intrinsic cellular autofluorescence signals in living cardiomyocytes. This work opens new horizons in the evaluation of cardiac transplant rejection using latest fluorescence imaging approaches.

  15. Beamlet laser diagnostics

    SciTech Connect

    Burkhart, S.C.; Behrendt, W.C.; Smith, I.

    1996-06-01

    Beamlet is instrumented extensively to monitor the performance of the overall laser system and many of its subsystems. Beam diagnostics, installed in key locations, are used to fully characterize the beam during its propagation through the multipass cavity and the laser`s output section. This article describes the diagnostics stations located on Beamlet and discusses the design, calibration, and performance of the Beamlet calorimeters. The authors used Nova`s diagnostics packages to develop the Beamlet design to determine beam energy, spatial profile, temporal profile, and other beam parameters. Technologic improvements within the last several years in controls, charge-coupled device (CCD) cameras, and fast oscilloscopes have allowed the authors to obtain more accurate measurements on the Beamlet laser system. They briefly cover some of these techniques, including a description of their LabVIEW based data acquisition system.

  16. Knowledge based jet engine diagnostics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jellison, Timothy G.; Dehoff, Ronald L.

    1987-01-01

    A fielded expert system automates equipment fault isolation and recommends corrective maintenance action for Air Force jet engines. The knowledge based diagnostics tool was developed as an expert system interface to the Comprehensive Engine Management System, Increment IV (CEMS IV), the standard Air Force base level maintenance decision support system. XMAM (trademark), the Expert Maintenance Tool, automates procedures for troubleshooting equipment faults, provides a facility for interactive user training, and fits within a diagnostics information feedback loop to improve the troubleshooting and equipment maintenance processes. The application of expert diagnostics to the Air Force A-10A aircraft TF-34 engine equipped with the Turbine Engine Monitoring System (TEMS) is presented.

  17. An integrated data analysis tool for improving measurements on the MST RFP.

    PubMed

    Reusch, L M; Galante, M E; Franz, P; Johnson, J R; McGarry, M B; Stephens, H D; Den Hartog, D J

    2014-11-01

    Many plasma diagnostics contain complementary information. For example, the double-foil soft x-ray system (SXR) and the Thomson Scattering diagnostic (TS) on the Madison Symmetric Torus both measure electron temperature. The complementary information from these diagnostics can be combined using a systematic method based on integrated data analysis techniques, leading to more accurate and sensitive results. An integrated data analysis tool based on Bayesian probability theory was able to estimate electron temperatures that are consistent with both the SXR and TS diagnostics and more precise than either. A Markov Chain Monte Carlo analysis to increase the flexibility of the tool was implemented and benchmarked against a grid search method. PMID:25430257

  18. Miniature all-solid-state heterostructure nanowire Li-ion batteries as a tool for engineering and structural diagnostics of nanoscale electrochemical processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oleshko, Vladimir P.; Lam, Thomas; Ruzmetov, Dmitry; Haney, Paul; Lezec, Henri J.; Davydov, Albert V.; Krylyuk, Sergiy; Cumings, John; Talin, A. Alec

    2014-09-01

    Complex interfacial phenomena and phase transformations that govern the operation of Li-ion batteries require detailed nanoscale 3D structural and compositional characterization that can be directly related to their capacity and electrical transport properties. For this purpose, we have designed model miniature all solid-state radial heterostructure Li-ion batteries composed of LiCoO2 cathode, LiPON electrolyte and amorphous Si anode shells, which were deposited around metallized high-aspect-ratio Si nanowires as a scaffolding core. Such diagnostic batteries, the smallest, complete secondary Li-ion batteries realized to date, were specifically designed for in situ electrical testing in a field-emission scanning electron microscope and/or transmission electron microscope. The results of electrochemical testing were described in detail in a previous publication (Nano Lett., 2012, 12, 505-511). The model Li-ion batteries allow analysis of the correlations between electrochemical properties and their structural evolution during cycling in various imaging, diffraction and spectroscopic modes down to the atomic level. Employing multimode analytical scanning/transmission electron microscopy imaging coupled with correlative multivariate statistical analysis and tomography, we have analyzed and quantified the 3D morphological and structural arrangement of the batteries, including textured platelet-like LiCoO2 nanocrystallites, buried electrode-electrolyte interfaces and hidden internal defects to clarify effects of scaling on a battery's electrochemical performance. Characterization of the nanoscale interfacial processes using model heterostructure nanowire-based Li-ion batteries provides useful guidelines for engineering of prospective nano-sized building blocks in future electrochemical energy storage systems.Complex interfacial phenomena and phase transformations that govern the operation of Li-ion batteries require detailed nanoscale 3D structural and compositional

  19. Miniature all-solid-state heterostructure nanowire Li-ion batteries as a tool for engineering and structural diagnostics of nanoscale electrochemical processes.

    PubMed

    Oleshko, Vladimir P; Lam, Thomas; Ruzmetov, Dmitry; Haney, Paul; Lezec, Henri J; Davydov, Albert V; Krylyuk, Sergiy; Cumings, John; Talin, A Alec

    2014-10-21

    Complex interfacial phenomena and phase transformations that govern the operation of Li-ion batteries require detailed nanoscale 3D structural and compositional characterization that can be directly related to their capacity and electrical transport properties. For this purpose, we have designed model miniature all solid-state radial heterostructure Li-ion batteries composed of LiCoO2 cathode, LiPON electrolyte and amorphous Si anode shells, which were deposited around metallized high-aspect-ratio Si nanowires as a scaffolding core. Such diagnostic batteries, the smallest, complete secondary Li-ion batteries realized to date, were specifically designed for in situ electrical testing in a field-emission scanning electron microscope and/or transmission electron microscope. The results of electrochemical testing were described in detail in a previous publication (Nano Lett., 2012, 12, 505-511). The model Li-ion batteries allow analysis of the correlations between electrochemical properties and their structural evolution during cycling in various imaging, diffraction and spectroscopic modes down to the atomic level. Employing multimode analytical scanning/transmission electron microscopy imaging coupled with correlative multivariate statistical analysis and tomography, we have analyzed and quantified the 3D morphological and structural arrangement of the batteries, including textured platelet-like LiCoO2 nanocrystallites, buried electrode-electrolyte interfaces and hidden internal defects to clarify effects of scaling on a battery's electrochemical performance. Characterization of the nanoscale interfacial processes using model heterostructure nanowire-based Li-ion batteries provides useful guidelines for engineering of prospective nano-sized building blocks in future electrochemical energy storage systems. PMID:25157420

  20. Use of the Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) Regions to Examine Symbiont Divergence and as a Diagnostic Tool for Sodalis-Related Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Snyder, Anna K.; Adkins, Kenneth Z.; Rio, Rita V. M.

    2011-01-01

    Bacteria excel in most ecological niches, including insect symbioses. A cluster of bacterial symbionts, established within a broad range of insects, share high 16S rRNA similarities with the secondary symbiont of the tsetse fly (Diptera: Glossinidae), Sodalis glossinidius. Although 16S rRNA has proven informative towards characterization of this clade, the gene is insufficient for examining recent divergence due to selective constraints. Here, we assess the application of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions, specifically the ITSglu and ITSala,ile, used in conjunction with 16S rRNA to enhance the phylogenetic resolution of Sodalis-allied bacteria. The 16S rRNA + ITS regions of Sodalis and allied bacteria demonstrated significant divergence and were robust towards phylogenetic resolution. A monophyletic clade of Sodalis isolates from tsetse species, distinct from other Enterobacteriaceae, was consistently observed suggesting diversification due to host adaptation. In contrast, the phylogenetic distribution of symbionts isolated from hippoboscid flies and various Hemiptera and Coleoptera were intertwined suggesting either horizontal transfer or a recent establishment from an environmental source. Lineage splitting of Sodalis-allied bacteria into symbiotic and free-living sister groups was also observed. Additionally, we propose an ITS region as a diagnostic marker for the identification of additional Sodalis-allied symbionts in the field. These results expand our knowledge of informative genome regions to assess genetic divergence since splitting from the last common ancestor, of this versatile insect symbiont clade that have become increasingly recognized as valuable towards our understanding of the evolution of symbiosis. These facultative and recently associated symbionts may provide a novel source of traits adaptable to the dynamic ecologies encountered by diverse host backgrounds. PMID:26467831

  1. Electrophoresis of tear proteins as a new diagnostic tool for two high risk groups for dry eye: computer users and contact lens wearers

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Rationale: Dry eye is the most prevalent condition seen by the ophthalmologist, in particular in elderly. The identification of new common risk factors (computer use and contact lens wear) extends the disease among the young people. The early diagnosis of dry eye is essential, but difficult, because the biochemical changes in tear film usually occur before any detectable signs. Due its advantages, electrophoresis of tear proteins could be an important tool for diagnosis of tear film impairment in high risk groups for dry eye. Objective: The role of tear proteins electrophoresis in early diagnosis of dry eye related to computer use and contact lens wear, as well as the biochemical changes in these high risk groups are presented. Methods: This review will summarize the actual data concerning the electrophoretic changes of tear proteins in computer users and contact lens wearers, two common high risk groups for dry eye. Discussion: Electrophoresis of tear proteins using automated system Hyrys–Hydrasys SEBIA France is an important tool for early diagnosis of tear film alterations and monitoring of therapy. The quantification of many proteins in a single analysis using a small quantity of unconcentrated reflex tears is the main advantage of this technique. Electrophoresis of tear proteins should became a prerequisite, in particular for computer users less than 3h/day, as well as at prescribing contact lenses. Abbreviations: DED– dry eye disease, EGF–epidermal growth factor, IL interleukins, MMP–metalloproteinase, ELISA– Enzyme–linked immunosorbent assay, SDS– sodium dodecyl sulfate, CVS– computer vision syndrome, CLRDE– contact lens– related dry eye PMID:22567044

  2. The suitability of some blood gas and biochemical parameters as diagnostic tools or early indicators of ascites syndrome in broiler sire lines.

    PubMed

    Hasanpur, K; Nassiri, M R; Hosseini Salekdeh, G; Vaez Torshizi, R; Pakdel, A; Kermanshahi, H; Naghous, M

    2016-06-01

    In recent few years, there have been some attempts to find a reliable indicator trait as a selection criterion against susceptibility to ascites syndrome (AS). Blood parameters were of great interest as they could be measured in live animals without implementing an ascites-inducing challenge (AIC). In this work, the suitability of some blood parameters was evaluated for diagnosing AS-susceptible chicks in later steps of the disease in trial 1 as well as their early predictive ability in trial 2. In the first trial, one hundred 1-day-old chicks from two pure broiler lines namely S1 and S2 and, in the second trial, 226 1-day-old chicks from line S2 were subjected to AIC. Saline drinking water (1200 mg/l) and lower-than-standard ambient temperatures were the implemented AICs in trials 1 and 2 respectively. The blood parameters including pH, partial pressure of O2 (pO2 ), partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2 ), bicarbonate ion concentration (BIC), percentage of haematocrit (HCT) and saturated haemoglobin (SaO2 ) were measured twice per each bird at days 28 and 35 in trial 1 and once in trial 2 at day 21. The results of the first trial revealed that in line S2 some of the blood parameters differed significantly between the ascitic and non-ascitic groups following exposure to AIC. In this line, the incidence of AS was accompanied by a lower pO2 , SaO2 and BIC, while with higher pCO2 and HCT values. In the second trial, however, although almost all of the parameters showed meaningful differences between the ascitic and non-ascitic broilers, only mean difference of BIC parameter was statistically significant. The general conclusion of this study is that the blood parameters can somewhat have diagnostic ability in the condition in which the AIC is already present, whereas the results did not approve their usefulness as early predictors of AS. PMID:26608233

  3. Companion diagnostics and molecular imaging-enhanced approaches for oncology clinical trials

    PubMed Central

    Van Heertum, Ronald L; Scarimbolo, Robert; Ford, Robert; Berdougo, Eli; O’Neal, Michael

    2015-01-01

    In the era of personalized medicine, diagnostic approaches are helping pharmaceutical and biotechnology sponsors streamline the clinical trial process. Molecular assays and diagnostic imaging are routinely being used to stratify patients for treatment, monitor disease, and provide reliable early clinical phase assessments. The importance of diagnostic approaches in drug development is highlighted by the rapidly expanding global cancer diagnostics market and the emergent attention of regulatory agencies worldwide, who are beginning to offer more structured platforms and guidance for this area. In this paper, we highlight the key benefits of using companion diagnostics and diagnostic imaging with a focus on oncology clinical trials. Nuclear imaging using widely available radiopharmaceuticals in conjunction with molecular imaging of oncology targets has opened the door to more accurate disease assessment and the modernization of standard criteria for the evaluation, staging, and treatment responses of cancer patients. Furthermore, the introduction and validation of quantitative molecular imaging continues to drive and optimize the field of oncology diagnostics. Given their pivotal role in disease assessment and treatment, the validation and commercialization of diagnostic tools will continue to advance oncology clinical trials, support new oncology drugs, and promote better patient outcomes. PMID:26392755

  4. Research Priorities in the Utilization and Interpretation of Diagnostic Imaging: Education, Assessment, and Competency.

    PubMed

    Lewiss, Resa E; Chan, Wilma; Sheng, Alexander Y; Soto, Jorge; Castro, Alexandra; Meltzer, Andrew C; Cherney, Alan; Kumaravel, Manickam; Cody, Dianna; Chen, Esther H

    2015-12-01

    The appropriate selection and accurate interpretation of diagnostic imaging is a crucial skill for emergency practitioners. To date, the majority of the published literature and research on competency assessment comes from the subspecialty of point-of-care ultrasound. A group of radiologists, physicists, and emergency physicians convened at the 2015 Academic Emergency Medicine consensus conference to discuss and prioritize a research agenda related to education, assessment, and competency in ordering and interpreting diagnostic imaging. A set of questions for the continued development of an educational curriculum on diagnostic imaging for trainees and competency assessment using specific assessment methods based on current best practices was delineated. The research priorities were developed through an iterative consensus-driven process using a modified nominal group technique that culminated in an in-person breakout session. The four recommendations are: 1) develop a diagnostic imaging curriculum for emergency medicine (EM) residency training; 2) develop, study, and validate tools to assess competency in diagnostic imaging interpretation; 3) evaluate the role of simulation in education, assessment, and competency measures for diagnostic imaging; 4) study is needed regarding the American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria, an evidence-based peer-reviewed resource in determining the use of diagnostic imaging, to maximize its value in EM. In this article, the authors review the supporting reliability and validity evidence and make specific recommendations for future research on the education, competency, and assessment of learning diagnostic imaging. PMID:26568277

  5. Immunohistochemistry and real-time PCR as diagnostic tools for detection of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato in ticks collected from humans.

    PubMed

    Briciu, Violeta T; Sebah, Daniela; Coroiu, Georgiana; Lupşe, Mihaela; Cârstina, Dumitru; Ţăţulescu, Doina F; Mihalca, Andrei D; Gherman, Călin M; Leucuţa, Daniel; Meyer, Fabian; Hizo-Teufel, Cecilia; Fingerle, Volker; Huber, Ingrid

    2016-05-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate different methods used for detection of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato (s.l.) in ticks: immunohistochemistry followed by focus floating microscopy (FFM) and real-time polymerase chain reaction (real-time PCR) targeting the ospA and hbb genes. Additionally, an optimized ospA real-time PCR assay was developed with an integrated internal amplification control (IAC) for the detection of inhibition in the PCR assay and was validated as an improved screening tool for B. burgdorferi. One hundred and thirty-six ticks collected from humans in a hospital from Cluj-Napoca, Romania, were investigated regarding genus, stage of development and sex, and then tested by all three assays. A poor quality of agreement was found between FFM and each of the two real-time PCR assays, as assessed by concordance analysis (Cohen's kappa), whereas the agreement between the two real-time PCR assays was moderate. The present study argues for a low sensitivity of FFM and underlines that discordant results of different assays used for detection of B. burgdorferi in ticks are frequent. PMID:26801157

  6. Development of reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) as a diagnostic tool of Toxoplasma gondii in pork.

    PubMed

    Qu, Daofeng; Zhou, Huaiyu; Han, Jianzhong; Tao, Siyue; Zheng, Bailing; Chi, Na; Su, Chunlei; Du, Aifang

    2013-02-18

    A fast, sensitive and specific reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) method for the detection of Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) in pork was developed. In this study, we used a conserved sequence of 18s rRNA of Toxoplasma gondii to design primers for RT-LAMP test. The amplication was able to finish in 60 min under isothermal condition at 63°C by employing a set of six primers. The assay showed higher sensitivity than RT-PCR using T. gondii RNA as template. The RT-LAMP assay was also assessed for specificity and was found to precisely discriminate between positive and negative test samples. Furthermore, the assay correctly detected T. gondii from contaminated pork, and had the detect limit of 1 tachyzoite in 1g pork. This is the first report of a study which applied the RT-LAMP method to detect T. gondii from pork. As RT-LAMP requires very basic instruments and the results can be obtained by visual observation, this technique provides a simple and reliable tool for inspecting food which are T. gondii-contaminated. PMID:23146414

  7. Pharmacokinetic studies with FVIII/von Willebrand factor concentrate can be a diagnostic tool to distinguish between subgroups of patients with acquired von Willebrand syndrome.

    PubMed

    Luboshitz, J; Lubetsky, A; Schliamser, L; Kotler, A; Tamarin, I; Inbal, A

    2001-05-01

    Acquired von Willebrand syndrome (AVWS) has been associated mainly with monoclonal gammopathy of uncertain significance (MGUS), clonal lymphoproliferative or myeloproliferative disorders and autoimmunity. In the present work we studied 6 patients with AVWS: four with MGUS IgG (lambda or kappa), one with small lymphocytic lymphoma and one with agnogenic myeloid metaplasia (AMM). All the patients underwent a pharmacokinetic analysis at presentation in order to study potential differences in recovery, clearance (CL) or terminal half-life (THL) following administration of von Willebrand factor (VWF) concentrate. In all the patients with AVWS an increase in clearance and a decrease in THL was observed as compared to these parameters in patients with hereditary type 3 von Willebrand disease (VWD). No difference in recovery was observed among the groups. The increase in clearance and the decrease in THL were significantly more pronounced in the group of MGUS patients (57.93 +/- 25.6 ml/h/kg, and 1.39 +/- 0.5 h, respectively) as compared to these parameters in the AMM (8.06 ml/h/kg, and 6.96 h, respectively) or the lymphoma (4.76 ml/h/kg, and 6.76 h. respectively) patients (p = 0.03 for clearance and 0.001 for THL). These data indicate that the pharmacokinetic analysis can be a useful tool to distinguish between MGUS-related and other causes of AVWS, and to plan an appropriate treatment accordingly. PMID:11372672

  8. Recent advances in salivary cancer diagnostics enabled by biosensors and bioelectronics.

    PubMed

    Mishra, Saswat; Saadat, Darius; Kwon, Ohjin; Lee, Yongkuk; Choi, Woon-Seop; Kim, Jong-Hoon; Yeo, Woon-Hong

    2016-07-15

    There is a high demand for a non-invasive, rapid, and highly accurate tool for disease diagnostics. Recently, saliva based diagnostics for the detection of specific biomarkers has drawn significant attention since the sample extraction is simple, cost-effective, and precise. Compared to blood, saliva contains a similar variety of DNA, RNA, proteins, metabolites, and microbiota that can be compiled into a multiplex of cancer detection markers. The salivary diagnostic method holds great potential for early-stage cancer diagnostics without any complicated and expensive procedures. Here, we review various cancer biomarkers in saliva and compare the biomarkers efficacy with traditional diagnostics and state-of-the-art bioelectronics. We summarize biomarkers in four major groups: genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics/microbiota. Representative bioelectronic systems for each group are summarized based on various stages of a cancer. Systematic study of oxidative stress establishes the relationship between macromolecules and cancer biomarkers in saliva. We also introduce the most recent examples of salivary diagnostic electronics based on nanotechnologies that can offer rapid, yet highly accurate detection of biomarkers. A concluding section highlights areas of opportunity in the further development and applications of these technologies. PMID:26946257

  9. The Impact of an Online Crowdsourcing Diagnostic Tool on Health Care Utilization: A Case Study Using a Novel Approach to Retrospective Claims Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Quisel, Thomas R; Foschini, Luca; Ladapo, Joseph A

    2016-01-01

    Background Patients with difficult medical cases often remain undiagnosed despite visiting multiple physicians. A new online platform, CrowdMed, uses crowdsourcing to quickly and efficiently reach an accurate diagnosis for these patients. Objective This study sought to evaluate whether CrowdMed decreased health care utilization for patients who have used the service. Methods Novel, electronic methods of patient recruitment and data collection were utilized. Patients who completed cases on CrowdMed’s platform between July 2014 and April 2015 were recruited for the study via email and screened via an online survey. After providing eConsent, participants provided identifying information used to access their medical claims data, which was retrieved through a third-party web application program interface (API). Utilization metrics including frequency of provider visits and medical charges were compared pre- and post-case resolution to assess the impact of resolving a case on CrowdMed. Results Of 45 CrowdMed users who completed the study survey, comprehensive claims data was available via API for 13 participants, who made up the final enrolled sample. There were a total of 221 health care provider visits collected for the study participants, with service dates ranging from September 2013 to July 2015. Frequency of provider visits was significantly lower after resolution of a case on CrowdMed (mean of 1.07 visits per month pre-resolution vs. 0.65 visits per month post-resolution, P=.01). Medical charges were also significantly lower after case resolution (mean of US $719.70 per month pre-resolution vs. US $516.79 per month post-resolution, P=.03). There was no significant relationship between study results and disease onset date, and there was no evidence of regression to the mean influencing results. Conclusions This study employed technology-enabled methods to demonstrate that patients who used CrowdMed had lower health care utilization after case resolution. However

  10. Diagnostic Imaging

    MedlinePlus

    Diagnostic imaging lets doctors look inside your body for clues about a medical condition. A variety of machines and ... and activities inside your body. The type of imaging your doctor uses depends on your symptoms and ...

  11. Reflectance confocal microscopy as a useful diagnostic tool for monitoring of skin containing vascularized composite allograft rejection: A preliminary study on rats.

    PubMed

    Zor, Fatih; Karagoz, Huseyin; Erdemir, Asli Turgut; Karslioglu, Yildirim; Acikel, Cengiz Han; Kapaj, Rezarta; Guzey, Serbulent; Gurel, Mehmet Salih; Isik, Selcuk; Siemionow, Maria

    2016-02-01

    Vascularized composite allografts can undergo immune-mediated rejection, and skin biopsies are needed for monitoring of the transplant. However it is an invasive method, and requires processing time and pathological assessment. The purpose of this study is to use a new noninvasive monitoring method of the reflectance confocal microscopy (RCM) to determine severity of the allograft rejection on rats. Five groin flap allotransplantation were performed between 10 male Sprague-Dawley rats. Immunosuppressive therapy with cyclosporine A was given to the recipients during 10 days after surgery and was ended at the 10th postoperative days to allow acute transplant rejection. Following cessation of CsA, concomitant RCM evaluation and skin biopsy was performed every other day from each animal until total rejection of the allograft. Complete rejection of the allograft took nearly about 10 days and 4 or 5 RCM evaluation and skin biopsy was performed from each rat during this period. A total of 17 specimens were evaluated. A scoring system was developed based on the RCM findings. Skin biopsies were evaluated according to the Banff 2007 working classification criteria. RCM evaluation revealed epidermal irregularity and collagen destruction, however mild perivascular inflammation and degeneration of the basal epidermal layer were observed in early and late rejection period respectively with histopathologic evaluation. High correlation was found between the RCM scores and histopathologic grading. The RCM may be the useful tool to reduce the need for skin biopsy for monitoring of the skin containing vascularized composite allograft. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Microsurgery 36:144-151, 2016. PMID:25959719

  12. Significance of erection hardness score as a diagnostic tool to assess erectile function recovery in Japanese men after robot-assisted radical prostatectomy.

    PubMed

    Miyake, Hideaki; Miyazaki, Akira; Yao, Akihisa; Hinata, Nobuyuki; Fujisawa, Masato

    2016-09-01

    The objective of this study was to characterize time-dependent recovery of erectile function in Japanese patients following robot-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) using the erection hardness score (EHS). This study prospectively included 170 Japanese patients with localized prostate cancer (PC) undergoing RARP without neoadjuvant hormonal therapy. The erectile function of each patient was assessed based on the International Index of Erectile Function-5 (IIEF-5) and EHS at the baseline and on every visit to an outpatient clinic after RARP. In this series, potency was defined as the ability to have an erection sufficient for intercourse, corresponding to EHS ≥3, while patients with EHS ≥2 were regarded as those with erectile function. Of these 170 patients, 20 and 75 underwent bilateral and unilateral nerve-sparing procedures, respectively; however, non-nerve-sparing procedures were performed in the remaining 75. A proportional increase in the IIEF-5 score according to EHS was noted at 24 months after RARP. At 6, 12 and 24 months after RARP, the recovery rates of erectile function were 11.9, 21.7 and 35.8 %, respectively, while those of potency were 3.8, 9.8 and 13.7 %, respectively. Of several factors examined, the age, preoperative IIEF-5 score and nerve-sparing procedure were identified as independent predictors of erectile function recovery. These findings suggest that favorable erectile function recovery could not be achieved in Japanese PC patients even after the introduction of RARP; therefore, it might be preferable for such a cohort to use EHS rather than IIEF-5 as an assessment tool for the postoperative recovery of erectile function. PMID:26994775

  13. Polymerase chain reaction for the amplification of the 121-bp repetitive sequence of Schistosoma mansoni: a highly sensitive potential diagnostic tool for areas of low endemicity.

    PubMed

    Ferrer, E; Pérez, F; Bello, I; Bolívar, A; Lares, M; Osorio, A; León, L; Amarista, M; Incani, R N

    2015-11-01

    Schistosomiasis is a disease caused by parasitic flatworms of the genus Schistosoma, whose diagnosis has limitations, such as the low sensitivity and specificity of parasitological and immunological methods, respectively. In the present study an alternative molecular technique requiring previous standardization was carried out using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the amplification of a 121-bp highly repetitive sequence for Schistosoma mansoni. DNA was extracted from eggs of S. mansoni by salting out. Different conditions were standardized for the PCR technique, including the concentration of reagents and the DNA template, annealing temperature and number of cycles, followed by the determination of the analytical sensitivity and specificity of the technique. Furthermore, the standardized PCR technique was employed in DNA extracted, using Chelex®100, from samples of sera of patients with an immunodiagnosis of schistosomiasis. The optimal conditions for the PCR were 2.5 mm MgCl2, 150 mm deoxynucleoside triphosphates (dNTPs), 0.4 μm primers, 0.75 U DNA polymerase, using 35 cycles and an annealing temperature of 63°C. The analytical sensitivity of the PCR was 10 attograms of DNA and the specificity was 100%. The DNA sequence was successfully detected in the sera of two patients, demonstrating schistosomiasis transmission, although low, in the community studied. The standardized PCR technique, using smaller amounts of reagents than in the original protocol, is highly sensitive and specific for the detection of DNA from S. mansoni and could be an important tool for diagnosis in areas of low endemicity. PMID:25141275

  14. Diagnostic radiology

    SciTech Connect

    Leeds, N.E.; Jacobson, H.G.

    1986-10-17

    Developments in the burgeoning field of diagnostic radiology have continued apace. Four areas that represent either subspecialities or technological advances in diagnostic radiology will be considered in this report: ultrasonography, interventional radiology, nuclear radiology, and magnetic resonance. In no sense is the exclusion of other subdisciplines and modalities (eg, pediatric radiology, computed tomography) and indication of their of importance or their failure to include innovative concepts.

  15. Upgrading Diagnostic Diagrams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Proxauf, B.; Kimeswenger, S.; Öttl, S.

    2014-04-01

    Diagnostic diagrams of forbidden lines have been a useful tool for observers in astrophysics for many decades now. They are used to obtain information on the basic physical properties of thin gaseous nebulae. Moreover they are also the initial tool to derive thermodynamic properties of the plasma from observations to get ionization correction factors and thus to obtain proper abundances of the nebulae. Some diagnostic diagrams are in wavelengths domains which were difficult to take either due to missing wavelength coverage or low resolution of older spectrographs. Thus they were hardly used in the past. An upgrade of this useful tool is necessary because most of the diagrams were calculated using only the species involved as a single atom gas, although several are affected by well-known fluorescence mechanisms as well. Additionally the atomic data have improved up to the present time. The new diagnostic diagrams are calculated by using large grids of parameter space in the photoionization code CLOUDY. For a given basic parameter the input radiation field is varied to find the solutions with cooling-heating-equilibrium. Empirical numerical functions are fitted to provide formulas usable in e.g. data reduction pipelines. The resulting diagrams differ significantly from those used up to now and will improve the thermodynamic calculations.

  16. Current developments in salivary diagnostics

    PubMed Central

    Foley, Joseph D; Bailey, Alison L; Campell, Charles L; Humphries, Roger L; Christodoulides, Nicolaos; Floriano, Pierre N; Simmons, Glennon; Bhagwandin, Bryon; Jacobson, James W; Redding, Spencer W; Ebersole, Jeffrey L; McDevitt, John T

    2010-01-01

    Salivary diagnostics is an emerging field that has progressed through several important developments in the past decade, including the publication of the human salivary proteome and the infusion of federal funds to integrate nanotechnologies and microfluidic engineering concepts into developing compact point-of-care devices for rapid analysis of this secretion. In this article, we discuss some of these developments and their relevance to the prognosis, diagnosis and management of periodontitis, as an oral target, and cardiovascular disease, as a systemic example for the potential of these biodiagnostics. Our findings suggest that several biomarkers are associated with distinct biological stages of these diseases and demonstrate promise as practical biomarkers in identifying and managing periodontal disease, and acute myocardial infarction. The majority of these studies have progressed through biomarker discovery, with the identified molecules requiring more robust clinical studies to enable substantive validation for disease diagnosis. It is predicted that with continued advances in this field the use of a combination of biomarkers in multiplex panels is likely to yield accurate screening tools for these diagnoses in the near future. PMID:20387312

  17. Current developments in salivary diagnostics.

    PubMed

    Miller, Craig S; Foley, Joseph D; Bailey, Alison L; Campell, Charles L; Humphries, Roger L; Christodoulides, Nicolaos; Floriano, Pierre N; Simmons, Glennon; Bhagwandin, Bryon; Jacobson, James W; Redding, Spencer W; Ebersole, Jeffrey L; McDevitt, John T

    2010-02-01

    Salivary diagnostics is an emerging field that has progressed through several important developments in the past decade, including the publication of the human salivary proteome and the infusion of federal funds to integrate nanotechnologies and microfluidic engineering concepts into developing compact point-of-care devices for rapid analysis of this secretion. In this article, we discuss some of these developments and their relevance to the prognosis, diagnosis and management of periodontitis, as an oral target, and cardiovascular disease, as a systemic example for the potential of these biodiagnostics. Our findings suggest that several biomarkers are associated with distinct biological stages of these diseases and demonstrate promise as practical biomarkers in identifying and managing periodontal disease, and acute myocardial infarction. The majority of these studies have progressed through biomarker discovery, with the identified molecules requiring more robust clinical studies to enable substantive validation for disease diagnosis. It is predicted that with continued advances in this field the use of a combination of biomarkers in multiplex panels is likely to yield accurate screening tools for these diagnoses in the near future. PMID:20387312

  18. Accurate Detection of Rifampicin-Resistant Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Strains.

    PubMed

    Song, Keum-Soo; Nimse, Satish Balasaheb; Kim, Hee Jin; Yang, Jeongseong; Kim, Taisun

    2016-01-01

    In 2013 alone, the death rate among the 9.0 million people infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB) worldwide was around 14%, which is unacceptably high. An empiric treatment of patients infected with TB or drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MDR-TB) strain can also result in the spread of MDR-TB. The diagnostic tools which are rapid, reliable, and have simple experimental protocols can significantly help in decreasing the prevalence rate of MDR-TB strain. We report the evaluation of the 9G technology based 9G DNAChips that allow accurate detection and discrimination of TB and MDR-TB-RIF. One hundred and thirteen known cultured samples were used to evaluate the ability of 9G DNAChip in the detection and discrimination of TB and MDR-TB-RIF strains. Hybridization of immobilized probes with the PCR products of TB and MDR-TB-RIF strains allow their detection and discrimination. The accuracy of 9G DNAChip was determined by comparing its results with sequencing analysis and drug susceptibility testing. Sequencing analysis showed 100% agreement with the results of 9G DNAChip. The 9G DNAChip showed very high sensitivity (95.4%) and specificity (100%). PMID:26999135

  19. Accurate Detection of Rifampicin-Resistant Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Strains

    PubMed Central

    Song, Keum-Soo; Nimse, Satish Balasaheb; Kim, Hee Jin; Yang, Jeongseong; Kim, Taisun

    2016-01-01

    In 2013 alone, the death rate among the 9.0 million people infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB) worldwide was around 14%, which is unacceptably high. An empiric treatment of patients infected with TB or drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MDR-TB) strain can also result in the spread of MDR-TB. The diagnostic tools which are rapid, reliable, and have simple experimental protocols can significantly help in decreasing the prevalence rate of MDR-TB strain. We report the evaluation of the 9G technology based 9G DNAChips that allow accurate detection and discrimination of TB and MDR-TB-RIF. One hundred and thirteen known cultured samples were used to evaluate the ability of 9G DNAChip in the detection and discrimination of TB and MDR-TB-RIF strains. Hybridization of immobilized probes with the PCR products of TB and MDR-TB-RIF strains allow their detection and discrimination. The accuracy of 9G DNAChip was determined by comparing its results with sequencing analysis and drug susceptibility testing. Sequencing analysis showed 100% agreement with the results of 9G DNAChip. The 9G DNAChip showed very high sensitivity (95.4%) and specificity (100%). PMID:26999135

  20. Analysis of quaternary ammonium compounds in estuarine sediments by LC-ToF-MS: very high positive mass defects of alkylamine ions provide powerful diagnostic tools for identification and structural elucidation

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaolin; Brownawell, Bruce J.

    2009-01-01

    A sensitive and robust method of analysis for quaternary ammonium compounds (QACs) in marine sediments is presented. Methods for extraction, sample purification, and HPLC-Time-of-Flight-MS analysis were optimized, providing solutions to problems associated with analysis of QACs, such as dialkyldimethylammonium (DADMAC) and benzalkonium (BAC) compounds experienced previously. Recognized in this study are the exceptionally high positive mass defects characteristic of alkylammonium or protonated alkylamine ions. No alternative and chemically-viable elemental formulas exist within 25.2 mDa when the number of double bond equivalents is low, effectively allowing facile discrimination of this compound class in complex mixtures. Accurate mass measurements of diagnostic collision induced dissociation fragment ions and heavy isotope peaks were obtained and also seen to be uniquely heavy compared to other elemental formulae. In the case of BACs, the ability to resolve masses of alkylamine fragment ions is greater than it is for molecular ions, opening up a wide range of potential applications. The power of utilizing a combination of approaches is illustrated with the identification of non-targeted DADMAC C8:C8 and C8:C10, two widely used biocides previously unreported in environmental samples. Concentrations of QACs in sewage-impacted estuarine sediments (up to 74 μg/g) were higher than concentrations of other organic contaminants measured in the same or nearby samples, suggesting further study is needed. PMID:19739657

  1. Comparative Capabilities of Clinical Assessment, Diagnostic Criteria, and Polysomnography in Detecting Sleep Bruxism

    PubMed Central

    Palinkas, Marcelo; De Luca Canto, Graziela; Rodrigues, Laíse Angélica Mendes; Bataglion, César; Siéssere, Selma; Semprini, Marisa; Regalo, Simone Cecilio Hallak

    2015-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate the diagnostic capability of signs and symptoms of sleep bruxism (SB) as per the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) criteria and a diagnostic grading system proposed by international experts for assessing SB. Methods: The study was conducted in three phases (interview, physical examination, and sleep studies). Subjects were asked about self-reported tooth grinding sounds occurring during sleep, muscle fatigue, temporal headaches, jaw muscle pain, and jaw locking. A visual examination was conducted to check for presence of abnormal tooth wear. A full-night polysomnography (PSG) was performed. After three phases, the subjects were divided into two groups matched by age and gender: Case Group, 45 SB subjects, and Control Group, 45 non-SB subjects. Diagnostic accuracy measurements were calculated for each sign or symptom individually and for the two diagnostic criteria analyzed. Results: Muscle fatigue, temporal headaches, and AASM criteria were associated with highest sensitivity (78%, 67%, 58%, respectively) and also with highest diagnostic odds ratio (OR = 9.63, 9.25, 6.33, respectively). Jaw locking, muscle pain, and the criterion of “probable SB” were associated with the worst sensitivity (16%, 18%, 22%, respectively). Conclusions: Presence of muscle fatigue and temporal headaches can be considered good tools to screen SB patients. None of the diagnostic criteria evaluated was able to accurately identify patients with SB. AASM criteria had the strongest diagnostic capabilities and—although they do not attain diagnostic values high enough to replace the current gold standard (PSG)—should be used as a screening tool to identify SB. Citation: Palinkas M, De Luca Canto G, Rodrigues LA, Bataglion C, Siéssere S, Semprini M, Regalo SC. Comparative capabilities of clinical assessment, diagnostic criteria, and polysomnography in detecting sleep bruxism. J Clin Sleep Med 2015;11(11):1319–1325. PMID:26235152

  2. Fungal Diagnostics

    PubMed Central

    Kozel, Thomas R.; Wickes, Brian

    2014-01-01

    Early diagnosis of fungal infection is critical to effective treatment. There are many impediments to diagnosis such as a diminishing number of clinical mycologists, cost, time to result, and requirements for sensitivity and specificity. In addition, fungal diagnostics must meet the contrasting needs presented by the increasing diversity of fungi found in association with the use of immunosuppressive agents in countries with high levels of medical care and the need for diagnostics in resource-limited countries where large numbers of opportunistic infections occur in patients with AIDS. Traditional approaches to diagnosis include direct microscopic examination of clinical samples, histopathology, culture, and serology. Emerging technologies include molecular diagnostics and antigen detection in clinical samples. Innovative new technologies that use molecular and immunoassay platforms have the potential to meet the needs of both resource-rich and resource-limited clinical environments. PMID:24692193

  3. DIAGNOSTICS OF BNL ERL

    SciTech Connect

    POZDEYEV,E.; BEN-ZVI, I.; CAMERON, P.; GASSNER, D.; KAYRAN, D.; ET AL.

    2007-06-25

    The ERL Prototype project is currently under development at the Brookhaven National Laboratory. The ERL is expected to demonstrate energy recovery of high-intensity beams with a current of up to a few hundred milliamps, while preserving the emittance of bunches with a charge of a few nanocoulombs produced by a high-current SRF gun. To successfully accomplish this task the machine will include beam diagnostics that will be used for accurate characterization of the three dimensional beam phase space at the injection and recirculation energies, transverse and longitudinal beam matching, orbit alignment, beam current measurement, and machine protection. This paper outlines requirements on the ERL diagnostics and describes its setup and modes of operation.

  4. ACCURATE BUILDING INTEGRATED PHOTOVOLTAIC SYSTEM (BIPV) ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN TOOL

    EPA Science Inventory

    One of the leading areas of renewable energy applications for the twenty-first century is building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV). Integrating photovoltaics into building structures allows the costs of the PV system to be partially offset by the solar modules also serving a s...

  5. Accurate Radiometry from Space: An Essential Tool for Climate Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fox, Nigel; Kaiser-Weiss, Andrea; Schmutz, Werner; Thome, Kurtis; Young, Dave; Wielicki, Bruce; Winkler, Rainer; Woolliams, Emma

    2011-01-01

    The Earth s climate is undoubtedly changing; however, the time scale, consequences and causal attribution remain the subject of significant debate and uncertainty. Detection of subtle indicators from a background of natural variability requires measurements over a time base of decades. This places severe demands on the instrumentation used, requiring measurements of sufficient accuracy and sensitivity that can allow reliable judgements to be made decades apart. The International System of Units (SI) and the network of National Metrology Institutes were developed to address such requirements. However, ensuring and maintaining SI traceability of sufficient accuracy in instruments orbiting the Earth presents a significant new challenge to the metrology community. This paper highlights some key measurands and applications driving the uncertainty demand of the climate community in the solar reflective domain, e.g. solar irradiances and reflectances/radiances of the Earth. It discusses how meeting these uncertainties facilitate significant improvement in the forecasting abilities of climate models. After discussing the current state of the art, it describes a new satellite mission, called TRUTHS, which enables, for the first time, high-accuracy SI traceability to be established in orbit. The direct use of a primary standard and replication of the terrestrial traceability chain extends the SI into space, in effect realizing a metrology laboratory in space . Keywords: climate change; Earth observation; satellites; radiometry; solar irradiance

  6. Diagnostic Testing in Cystic Fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Brewington, John; Clancy, J P

    2016-03-01

    Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is a rare, multisystem disease leading to significant morbidity and mortality. CF is caused by defects in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator protein (CFTR), a chloride and bicarbonate transporter. Early diagnosis and access to therapies provides benefits in nutrition, pulmonary health, and cognitive ability. Several screening and diagnostic tests are available to support a diagnosis. We discuss the characteristics of screening and diagnostic tests for CF and guideline-based algorithms using these tools to establish a diagnosis. We discuss classification and management of common "diagnostic dilemmas," including the CFTR-related metabolic syndrome and other CFTR-associated diseases. PMID:26857766

  7. Diagnostic imaging.

    PubMed

    Morris, Peter; Perkins, Alan

    2012-04-21

    Physical techniques have always had a key role in medicine, and the second half of the 20th century in particular saw a revolution in medical diagnostic techniques with the development of key imaging instruments: x-ray imaging and emission tomography (nuclear imaging and PET), MRI, and ultrasound. These techniques use the full width of the electromagnetic spectrum, from gamma rays to radio waves, and sound. In most cases, the development of a medical imaging device was opportunistic; many scientists in physics laboratories were experimenting with simple x-ray images within the first year of the discovery of such rays, the development of the cyclotron and later nuclear reactors created the opportunity for nuclear medicine, and one of the co-inventors of MRI was initially attempting to develop an alternative to x-ray diffraction for the analysis of crystal structures. What all these techniques have in common is the brilliant insight of a few pioneering physical scientists and engineers who had the tenacity to develop their inventions, followed by a series of technical innovations that enabled the full diagnostic potential of these instruments to be realised. In this report, we focus on the key part played by these scientists and engineers and the new imaging instruments and diagnostic procedures that they developed. By bringing the key developments and applications together we hope to show the true legacy of physics and engineering in diagnostic medicine. PMID:22516558

  8. Confirmed Zika virus infection in a Belgian traveler returning from Guatemala, and the diagnostic challenges of imported cases into Europe.

    PubMed

    De Smet, Birgit; Van den Bossche, Dorien; van de Werve, Charlotte; Mairesse, Jacques; Schmidt-Chanasit, Jonas; Michiels, Jo; Ariën, Kevin K; Van Esbroeck, Marjan; Cnops, Lieselotte

    2016-07-01

    We report the first laboratory-confirmed Zika virus (ZIKV) infection in a Belgian traveler after a three week holiday in Guatemala, December 2015. This case along with other imported cases into Europe emphases once again the need for accurate diagnostic tools for this rapidly emerging virus. The challenge is to diagnose patients in the acute phase, which appears short, as serological testing is complicated by cross-reactivity, vaccination status and scarce availability of specific ZIKV tests. PMID:27128355

  9. [Acromegaly: reducing diagnostic delay].

    PubMed

    Giustina, Andrea

    2016-08-01

    Diagnostic delay of acromegaly is still very relevant (6-8 years on average) without substantial changes in last twenty years. Clinical impact of this diagnostic delay is significant: tumor growth (2/3 of the patients at diagnosis bear a pituitary macroadenoma), development of irreversible complications (arthropathy, sleep apnea) and in all increased mortality. Reasons for this delay are related to the disease itself (facial and acral changes are very slow and subtle) but also to medical unawareness. Simple tools based on a few sufficiently sensitive and specific signs and symptoms which can trigger the diagnostic suspect would be useful in clinical practice. Global evaluation during follow-up (tumor volume, signs and symptoms, complications, circulating levels of growth hormone and its peripheral mediator IGF-I) has become crucial for the therapeutic decision making. In this regard, tools like SAGIT are now under validation and are expected to improve management of acromegaly. In fact, in the last 30 years there has been a relevant growth of the medical options to treat acromegaly and in the near future there will be an expansion of the medical options. This will greatly help the needed personalization of treatment which necessarily should consider patient convenience and preference and control of complications such as diabetes mellitus. PMID:27571562

  10. Rocket Engine Oscillation Diagnostics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nesman, Tom; Turner, James E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Rocket engine oscillating data can reveal many physical phenomena ranging from unsteady flow and acoustics to rotordynamics and structural dynamics. Because of this, engine diagnostics based on oscillation data should employ both signal analysis and physical modeling. This paper describes an approach to rocket engine oscillation diagnostics, types of problems encountered, and example problems solved. Determination of design guidelines and environments (or loads) from oscillating phenomena is required during initial stages of rocket engine design, while the additional tasks of health monitoring, incipient failure detection, and anomaly diagnostics occur during engine development and operation. Oscillations in rocket engines are typically related to flow driven acoustics, flow excited structures, or rotational forces. Additional sources of oscillatory energy are combustion and cavitation. Included in the example problems is a sampling of signal analysis tools employed in diagnostics. The rocket engine hardware includes combustion devices, valves, turbopumps, and ducts. Simple models of an oscillating fluid system or structure can be constructed to estimate pertinent dynamic parameters governing the unsteady behavior of engine systems or components. In the example problems it is shown that simple physical modeling when combined with signal analysis can be successfully employed to diagnose complex rocket engine oscillatory phenomena.

  11. New model accurately predicts reformate composition

    SciTech Connect

    Ancheyta-Juarez, J.; Aguilar-Rodriguez, E. )

    1994-01-31

    Although naphtha reforming is a well-known process, the evolution of catalyst formulation, as well as new trends in gasoline specifications, have led to rapid evolution of the process, including: reactor design, regeneration mode, and operating conditions. Mathematical modeling of the reforming process is an increasingly important tool. It is fundamental to the proper design of new reactors and revamp of existing ones. Modeling can be used to optimize operating conditions, analyze the effects of process variables, and enhance unit performance. Instituto Mexicano del Petroleo has developed a model of the catalytic reforming process that accurately predicts reformate composition at the higher-severity conditions at which new reformers are being designed. The new AA model is more accurate than previous proposals because it takes into account the effects of temperature and pressure on the rate constants of each chemical reaction.

  12. Alzheimer's disease: new diagnostic and therapeutic tools

    PubMed Central

    Racchi, Marco; Uberti, Daniela; Govoni, Stefano; Memo, Maurizio; Lanni, Cristina; Vasto, Sonya; Candore, Giuseppina; Caruso, Calogero; Romeo, Loriana; Scapagnini, Giovanni

    2008-01-01

    On March 19, 2008 a Symposium on Pathophysiology of Ageing and Age-Related diseases was held in Palermo, Italy. Here, the lectures of M. Racchi on History and future perspectives of Alzheimer Biomarkers and of G. Scapagnini on Cellular Stress Response and Brain Ageing are summarized. Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a heterogeneous and progressive neurodegenerative disease, which in Western society mainly accounts for clinica dementia. AD prevention is an important goal of ongoing research. Two objectives must be accomplished to make prevention feasible: i) individuals at high risk of AD need to be identified before the earliest symptoms become evident, by which time extensive neurodegeneration has already occurred and intervention to prevent the disease is likely to be less successful and ii) safe and effective interventions need to be developed that lead to a decrease in expression of this pathology. On the whole, data here reviewed strongly suggest that the measurement of conformationally altered p53 in blood cells has a high ability to discriminate AD cases from normal ageing, Parkinson's disease and other dementias. On the other hand, available data on the involvement of curcumin in restoring cellular homeostasis and rebalancing redox equilibrium, suggest that curcumin might be a useful adjunct in the treatment of neurodegenerative illnesses characterized by inflammation, such as AD. PMID:18700965

  13. Telepathology: a diagnostic tool for the millennium?

    PubMed

    Wells, C A; Sowter, C

    2000-05-01

    Many developments in science have their origins in science fiction and telepathology is no exception. The concept was first illustrated in 1924 in the magazine 'Radio News'. It was not until 1980, however, that the first working telepathology system was demonstrated. Although the system was shown to work, it required special hardware, dedicated software and special microwave transmission links to be installed. Little interest was shown worldwide because of the very high cost and the inability of many people to replicate such a system. Ten years later, the personal computer (PC) was able to provide more than adequate performance at low cost for both image display quality and speed, and the development of video technology had resulted in high quality images being produced by television cameras that were now easily affordable. Microscopes were also relatively cheaper. Thus, by 1993 or 1994, all the hardware necessary to produce a telepathology system was available at reasonable cost. Telepathology can now be used for remote primary diagnosis, remote referral to a specialist pathologist, remote teaching, remote presentation of post-mortem or microscopic findings, quality assurance image circulation and feedback, and consensus diagnosis for pathological review in clinical trials. There are two residual problems. The first concerns the speed of data transmission, commonly referred to as the bandwidth. The second is that the software provided by most of the manufacturers and suppliers of these systems is not entirely suitable to the task and the systems are not interoperable. It is clear that the approach of the manufacturers is at present unlikely to produce telepathology systems which pathologists feel comfortable in using. A somewhat different approach is illustrated by the accompanying article in this issue from the Berlin group, where a relatively simple Java-based applet and the Internet are used to allow single or multiple users to view slides on a robotic microscope. This could form the basis for a truly useful system, but still needs modification for some applications. PMID:10767711

  14. Metabolomics as a diagnostic tool in gastroenterology.

    PubMed

    De Preter, Vicky; Verbeke, Kristin

    2013-11-01

    Metabolomics has increasingly been applied in addition to other "omic" approaches in the study of the pathophysiology of different gastrointestinal diseases. Metabolites represent molecular readouts of the cell status reflecting a physiological phenotype. In addition, changes in metabolite concentrations induced by exogenous factors such as environmental and dietary factors which do not affect the genome, are taken into account. Metabolic reactions initiated by the host or gut microbiota can lead to "marker" metabolites present in different biological fluids that allow differentiation between health and disease. Several lines of evidence implicated the involvement of intestinal microbiota in the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Also in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a role of an abnormal microbiota composition, so-called dysbiosis, is supported by experimental data. These compositional alterations could play a role in the aetiology of both diseases by altering the metabolic activities of the gut bacteria. Several studies have applied a metabolomic approach to identify these metabolite signatures. However, before translating a potential metabolite biomarker into clinical use, additional validation studies are required. This review summarizes contributions that metabolomics has made in IBD and IBS and presents potential future directions within the field. PMID:24199025

  15. Diagnostic tools to identify black aspergilli

    PubMed Central

    Samson, R.A.; Noonim, P.; Meijer, M.; Houbraken, J.; Frisvad, J.C.; Varga, J.

    2007-01-01

    The present taxonomy of the black aspergilli reveals that there are 19 accepted taxa. However the identification of species of Aspergillus section Nigri is often problematic in spite of the existence of numerous methods proposed. An overview is provided of phenotypic and molecular methods to identify the accepted species of the black aspergilli. Colony morphology, conidial size and ornamentation of the ex type cultures is presented in a pictorial overview. The temperature range of all species is given and their growth characteristics on creatine agar and boscalid agar, a medium which was developed as a selective medium for the isolation of A. carbonarius are also shown. The extrolites produced by each species are listed while the response of the Ehrlich reaction is described. The literature on the various molecular methods to be used for species identification is reviewed and a critical evaluation of the usefulness of various techniques and genomic loci for species identification of black aspergilli is presented. PMID:18490945

  16. Metabolomics as a diagnostic tool in gastroenterology

    PubMed Central

    De Preter, Vicky; Verbeke, Kristin

    2013-01-01

    Metabolomics has increasingly been applied in addition to other “omic” approaches in the study of the pathophysiology of different gastrointestinal diseases. Metabolites represent molecular readouts of the cell status reflecting a physiological phenotype. In addition, changes in metabolite concentrations induced by exogenous factors such as environmental and dietary factors which do not affect the genome, are taken into account. Metabolic reactions initiated by the host or gut microbiota can lead to “marker” metabolites present in different biological fluids that allow differentiation between health and disease. Several lines of evidence implicated the involvement of intestinal microbiota in the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Also in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a role of an abnormal microbiota composition, so-called dysbiosis, is supported by experimental data. These compositional alterations could play a role in the aetiology of both diseases by altering the metabolic activities of the gut bacteria. Several studies have applied a metabolomic approach to identify these metabolite signatures. However, before translating a potential metabolite biomarker into clinical use, additional validation studies are required. This review summarizes contributions that metabolomics has made in IBD and IBS and presents potential future directions within the field. PMID:24199025

  17. LIFDAR: A Diagnostic Tool for the Ionosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kia, O. E.; Rodgers, C. T.; Batholomew, J. L.

    2011-12-01

    ITT Corporation proposes a novel system to measure and monitor the ion species within the Earth's ionosphere called Laser Induced Fluorescence Detection and Ranging (LIFDAR). Unlike current ionosphere measurements that detect electrons and magnetic field, LIFDAR remotely measures the major contributing ion species to the electron plasma. The LIFDAR dataset has the added capability to demonstrate stratification and classification of the layers of the ionosphere to ultimately give a true tomographic view. We propose a proof of concept study using existing atmospheric LIDAR sensors combined with a mountaintop observatory for a single ion species that is prevalent in all layers of the atmosphere. We envision the LIFDAR concept will enable verification, validation, and exploration of the physics of the magneto-hydrodynamic models used in ionosphere forecasting community. The LIFDAR dataset will provide the necessary ion and electron density data for the system wide data gap. To begin a proof of concept, we present the science justification of the LIFDAR system based on the model photon budget. This analysis is based on the fluorescence of ionized oxygen within the ionosphere versus altitude. We use existing model abundance data of the ionosphere during normal and perturbed states. We propagate the photon uncertainties from the laser source through the atmosphere to the plasma and back to the collecting optics and detector. We calculate the expected photon budget to determine signal to noise estimates based on the targeted altitude and detection efficiency. Finally, we use these results to derive a LIFDAR observation strategy compatible with operational parameters.

  18. Anterior mediastinotomy--a diagnostic tool.

    PubMed

    Adegboye, V O; Obajimi, M O; Ogunsehinde, O O; Brimmo, I A; Adebo, O A

    2001-12-01

    This is a review of our experience with anterior mediastinotomy (AM) in the diagnosis and evaluation of diseases of the mediastinum and lung. Thirty consecutive patients who had AM between 1984 and 1999 were retrospectively studied. The mean age of patients was 28 +/- 6.5 years. There were 22 males to 8 females. Sixteen patients had superior vena cava (SVC) obstruction (12 patients with lung cancer, 4 with primary mediastinal tumours), 4 patients had radiological evidence of mediastinal contiguity of upper lobe tumours and 10 patients had primary mediastinal tumours. AM was 1st procedure in 10 patients and 2nd procedure in 20 patients after failed or inconclusive result from FNAB, scalene node/cervical lymph node biopsy or bronchoscopy. Eighteen right-sided and 12 left-sided AMs were performed. Satisfactory histological diagnoses were achieved in all patients. Complications were easily controlled bleeding (4 patients) and life-threatening haemorrhage in 2 patients. Three patients had delayed wound healing and 4 had inadvertent pleural entries. There was no mortality temporarily related to the procedure. We conclude that AM is valuable as a surgical technique for obtaining tissue for histological purposes in diseases of the mediastinum and the lung when tissue specimens from less invasive procedures are unsatisfactory. PMID:14510116

  19. FEL-accelerator related diagnostics

    SciTech Connect

    Kevin Jordan; David Douglas; Stephen V. Benson; Pavel Evtuschenko

    2007-08-02

    Free Electron Lasers (FEL) present a unique set of beam parameters to the diagnostics suite. The FEL requires characterization of the full six dimensional phase space of the electron beam at the wiggler and accurate alignment of the electron beam to the optical mode of the laser. In addition to the FEL requirements on the diagnostics suite, the Jefferson Lab FEL is operated as an Energy Recovered Linac (ERL) which imposes additional requirements on the diagnostics. The ERL aspect of the Jefferson Lab FEL requires that diagnostics operate over a unique dynamic range and operate with simultaneous transport of the accelerated and energy recovered beams. This talk will present how these challenges are addressed at the Jefferson Lab FEL.

  20. Rapid diagnostic tests for malaria

    PubMed Central

    Daily, Jennifer; Hotte, Nora; Dolkart, Caitlin; Cunningham, Jane; Yadav, Prashant

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Maintaining quality, competitiveness and innovation in global health technology is a constant challenge for manufacturers, while affordability, access and equity are challenges for governments and international agencies. In this paper we discuss these issues with reference to rapid diagnostic tests for malaria. Strategies to control and eliminate malaria depend on early and accurate diagnosis. Rapid diagnostic tests for malaria require little training and equipment and can be performed by non-specialists in remote settings. Use of these tests has expanded significantly over the last few years, following recommendations to test all suspected malaria cases before treatment and the implementation of an evaluation programme to assess the performance of the malaria rapid diagnostic tests. Despite these gains, challenges exist that, if not addressed, could jeopardize the progress made to date. We discuss recent developments in rapid diagnostic tests for malaria, highlight some of the challenges and provide suggestions to address them. PMID:26668438

  1. Diagnostic imaging techniques in thyroid cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Friedman, M.; Toriumi, D.M.; Mafee, M.F.

    1988-02-01

    With the refinement of fine-needle aspiration, the specific applications of thyroid imaging techniques need to be reevaluated for efficiency and cost containment. No thyroid imaging test should be routinely obtained. Radionuclide scanning is most beneficial in evaluating the functional status of thyroid nodules when fine-needle aspiration is inadequate, the findings are benign, or when there is no discrete nodule that is palpated in an enlarged gland. When fine-needle aspiration is unavailable or unreliable, radionuclide scanning becomes a first-line diagnostic tool. Ultrasonography should be used primarily for identifying a solid component of a cystic nodule, determining the size of nodules on thyroxine suppression that are not easily palpable, or for performing guided fine-needle aspiration. Computerized tomography and magnetic resonance imaging both have a definite role in the evaluation of thyroid tumors. Magnetic resonance imaging is superior to computerized tomography for the evaluation of metastatic, retrotracheal, or mediastinal involvement of large thyroid tumors or goiters. Careful selection of the diagnostic techniques will ensure more accurate diagnosis and reduce unnecessary patient costs in the treatment of thyroid cancer.

  2. NNLOPS accurate associated HW production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Astill, William; Bizon, Wojciech; Re, Emanuele; Zanderighi, Giulia

    2016-06-01

    We present a next-to-next-to-leading order accurate description of associated HW production consistently matched to a parton shower. The method is based on reweighting events obtained with the HW plus one jet NLO accurate calculation implemented in POWHEG, extended with the MiNLO procedure, to reproduce NNLO accurate Born distributions. Since the Born kinematics is more complex than the cases treated before, we use a parametrization of the Collins-Soper angles to reduce the number of variables required for the reweighting. We present phenomenological results at 13 TeV, with cuts suggested by the Higgs Cross section Working Group.

  3. Metropolitan Achievement Tests (MAT6) Reading Diagnostic Tests (Test Review).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Canney, George

    1989-01-01

    Reviews the Reading Diagnostic Tests which form part of the battery of survey and diagnostic Metropolitan Achievement Tests. Finds the tests to be an impressive tool for diagnosing the reading strengths and weaknesses of elementary and junior high students. (RS)

  4. How to accurately bypass damage

    PubMed Central

    Broyde, Suse; Patel, Dinshaw J.

    2016-01-01

    Ultraviolet radiation can cause cancer through DNA damage — specifically, by linking adjacent thymine bases. Crystal structures show how the enzyme DNA polymerase η accurately bypasses such lesions, offering protection. PMID:20577203

  5. [Diagnostic kits in parasitology: which controls?].

    PubMed

    Rossi, P

    2004-06-01

    The development of new diagnostic tools particularly for some parasitic "neglected diseases", is slowed or even hindered by limited resources assigned for basic and applied research in public institution and private sector. Even if the time-line and costs needed for developing a new In Vitro Diagnostic (IVD) test are generally lower compared to vaccines or new drugs, industry is poorly engaged in investing resources due to the perception of limited markets. To accelerate the development of diagnostics for the world's most deadly diseases, the World Health Organization's (WHO) Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR), the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank and the Gates Foundation, last year launched a new initiative, FIND (Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics, www.finddiagnostics.org). The aim is to "apply the latest biotechnology innovations to develop and validate affordable diagnostic tests for diseases of the developing world". Ideally, a new diagnostic test should be accurately evaluated prior to use in medical practice. The first step would be a pre-clinical evaluation, an analytic study to determine its laboratory performance. A crucial point in this phase is the calibration of reagents (antigens, antibodies, DNA probes, etc.) against a standard reference preparation. WHO, through the WHO International Laboratories for Biological Standards, "provides International Biological Reference Preparations which serve as reference sources of defined biological activity expressed in an internationally agreed unit" (www.who.int/biologicals/IBRP/index.htm). Standardization allows "comparison of biological measurements worldwide" and ensures the reliability of diagnostic procedures. These preparations are generally intended for use in the characterization of the activity of secondary reference preparations (regional, national or in-house working standards). Unfortunately, international reference standards for parasitic

  6. Accurate Evaluation of Quantum Integrals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Galant, David C.; Goorvitch, D.

    1994-01-01

    Combining an appropriate finite difference method with Richardson's extrapolation results in a simple, highly accurate numerical method for solving a Schr\\"{o}dinger's equation. Important results are that error estimates are provided, and that one can extrapolate expectation values rather than the wavefunctions to obtain highly accurate expectation values. We discuss the eigenvalues, the error growth in repeated Richardson's extrapolation, and show that the expectation values calculated on a crude mesh can be extrapolated to obtain expectation values of high accuracy.

  7. High Frequency QRS ECG Accurately Detects Cardiomyopathy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schlegel, Todd T.; Arenare, Brian; Poulin, Gregory; Moser, Daniel R.; Delgado, Reynolds

    2005-01-01

    High frequency (HF, 150-250 Hz) analysis over the entire QRS interval of the ECG is more sensitive than conventional ECG for detecting myocardial ischemia. However, the accuracy of HF QRS ECG for detecting cardiomyopathy is unknown. We obtained simultaneous resting conventional and HF QRS 12-lead ECGs in 66 patients with cardiomyopathy (EF = 23.2 plus or minus 6.l%, mean plus or minus SD) and in 66 age- and gender-matched healthy controls using PC-based ECG software recently developed at NASA. The single most accurate ECG parameter for detecting cardiomyopathy was an HF QRS morphological score that takes into consideration the total number and severity of reduced amplitude zones (RAZs) present plus the clustering of RAZs together in contiguous leads. This RAZ score had an area under the receiver operator curve (ROC) of 0.91, and was 88% sensitive, 82% specific and 85% accurate for identifying cardiomyopathy at optimum score cut-off of 140 points. Although conventional ECG parameters such as the QRS and QTc intervals were also significantly longer in patients than controls (P less than 0.001, BBBs excluded), these conventional parameters were less accurate (area under the ROC = 0.77 and 0.77, respectively) than HF QRS morphological parameters for identifying underlying cardiomyopathy. The total amplitude of the HF QRS complexes, as measured by summed root mean square voltages (RMSVs), also differed between patients and controls (33.8 plus or minus 11.5 vs. 41.5 plus or minus 13.6 mV, respectively, P less than 0.003), but this parameter was even less accurate in distinguishing the two groups (area under ROC = 0.67) than the HF QRS morphologic and conventional ECG parameters. Diagnostic accuracy was optimal (86%) when the RAZ score from the HF QRS ECG and the QTc interval from the conventional ECG were used simultaneously with cut-offs of greater than or equal to 40 points and greater than or equal to 445 ms, respectively. In conclusion 12-lead HF QRS ECG employing

  8. ATAMM analysis tool

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Robert; Stoughton, John; Mielke, Roland

    1991-10-01

    Diagnostics software for analyzing Algorithm to Architecture Mapping Model (ATAMM) based concurrent processing systems is presented. ATAMM is capable of modeling the execution of large grain algorithms on distributed data flow architectures. The tool graphically displays algorithm activities and processor activities for evaluation of the behavior and performance of an ATAMM based system. The tool's measurement capabilities indicate computing speed, throughput, concurrency, resource utilization, and overhead. Evaluations are performed on a simulated system using the software tool. The tool is used to estimate theoretical lower bound performance. Analysis results are shown to be comparable to the predictions.

  9. ATAMM analysis tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, Robert; Stoughton, John; Mielke, Roland

    1991-01-01

    Diagnostics software for analyzing Algorithm to Architecture Mapping Model (ATAMM) based concurrent processing systems is presented. ATAMM is capable of modeling the execution of large grain algorithms on distributed data flow architectures. The tool graphically displays algorithm activities and processor activities for evaluation of the behavior and performance of an ATAMM based system. The tool's measurement capabilities indicate computing speed, throughput, concurrency, resource utilization, and overhead. Evaluations are performed on a simulated system using the software tool. The tool is used to estimate theoretical lower bound performance. Analysis results are shown to be comparable to the predictions.

  10. Rotorcraft Diagnostics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haste, Deepak; Azam, Mohammad; Ghoshal, Sudipto; Monte, James

    2012-01-01

    Health management (HM) in any engineering systems requires adequate understanding about the system s functioning; a sufficient amount of monitored data; the capability to extract, analyze, and collate information; and the capability to combine understanding and information for HM-related estimation and decision-making. Rotorcraft systems are, in general, highly complex. Obtaining adequate understanding about functioning of such systems is quite difficult, because of the proprietary (restricted access) nature of their designs and dynamic models. Development of an EIM (exact inverse map) solution for rotorcraft requires a process that can overcome the abovementioned difficulties and maximally utilize monitored information for HM facilitation via employing advanced analytic techniques. The goal was to develop a versatile HM solution for rotorcraft for facilitation of the Condition Based Maintenance Plus (CBM+) capabilities. The effort was geared towards developing analytic and reasoning techniques, and proving the ability to embed the required capabilities on a rotorcraft platform, paving the way for implementing the solution on an aircraft-level system for consolidation and reporting. The solution for rotorcraft can he used offboard or embedded directly onto a rotorcraft system. The envisioned solution utilizes available monitored and archived data for real-time fault detection and identification, failure precursor identification, and offline fault detection and diagnostics, health condition forecasting, optimal guided troubleshooting, and maintenance decision support. A variant of the onboard version is a self-contained hardware and software (HW+SW) package that can be embedded on rotorcraft systems. The HM solution comprises components that gather/ingest data and information, perform information/feature extraction, analyze information in conjunction with the dependency/diagnostic model of the target system, facilitate optimal guided troubleshooting, and offer

  11. Circulating microRNA-based screening tool for breast cancer

    PubMed Central

    Boukerroucha, Meriem; Fasquelle, Corinne; Thiry, Jérôme; Bovy, Nicolas; Struman, Ingrid; Geurts, Pierre; Collignon, Joëlle; Schroeder, Hélène; Kridelka, Frédéric; Lifrange, Eric; Jossa, Véronique

    2016-01-01

    Circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) are increasingly recognized as powerful biomarkers in several pathologies, including breast cancer. Here, their plasmatic levels were measured to be used as an alternative screening procedure to mammography for breast cancer diagnosis. A plasma miRNA profile was determined by RT-qPCR in a cohort of 378 women. A diagnostic model was designed based on the expression of 8 miRNAs measured first in a profiling cohort composed of 41 primary breast cancers and 45 controls, and further validated in diverse cohorts composed of 108 primary breast cancers, 88 controls, 35 breast cancers in remission, 31 metastatic breast cancers and 30 gynecologic tumors. A receiver operating characteristic curve derived from the 8-miRNA random forest based diagnostic tool exhibited an area under the curve of 0.81. The accuracy of the diagnostic tool remained unchanged considering age and tumor stage. The miRNA signature correctly identified patients with metastatic breast cancer. The use of the classification model on cohorts of patients with breast cancers in remission and with gynecologic cancers yielded prediction distributions similar to that of the control group. Using a multivariate supervised learning method and a set of 8 circulating miRNAs, we designed an accurate, minimally invasive screening tool for breast cancer. PMID:26734993

  12. Accurate simulation of optical properties in dyes.

    PubMed

    Jacquemin, Denis; Perpète, Eric A; Ciofini, Ilaria; Adamo, Carlo

    2009-02-17

    Since Antiquity, humans have produced and commercialized dyes. To this day, extraction of natural dyes often requires lengthy and costly procedures. In the 19th century, global markets and new industrial products drove a significant effort to synthesize artificial dyes, characterized by low production costs, huge quantities, and new optical properties (colors). Dyes that encompass classes of molecules absorbing in the UV-visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum now have a wider range of applications, including coloring (textiles, food, paintings), energy production (photovoltaic cells, OLEDs), or pharmaceuticals (diagnostics, drugs). Parallel to the growth in dye applications, researchers have increased their efforts to design and synthesize new dyes to customize absorption and emission properties. In particular, dyes containing one or more metallic centers allow for the construction of fairly sophisticated systems capable of selectively reacting to light of a given wavelength and behaving as molecular devices (photochemical molecular devices, PMDs).Theoretical tools able to predict and interpret the excited-state properties of organic and inorganic dyes allow for an efficient screening of photochemical centers. In this Account, we report recent developments defining a quantitative ab initio protocol (based on time-dependent density functional theory) for modeling dye spectral properties. In particular, we discuss the importance of several parameters, such as the methods used for electronic structure calculations, solvent effects, and statistical treatments. In addition, we illustrate the performance of such simulation tools through case studies. We also comment on current weak points of these methods and ways to improve them. PMID:19113946

  13. The ITER bolometer diagnostic: status and plans.

    PubMed

    Meister, H; Giannone, L; Horton, L D; Raupp, G; Zeidner, W; Grunda, G; Kalvin, S; Fischer, U; Serikov, A; Stickel, S; Reichle, R

    2008-10-01

    A consortium consisting of four EURATOM Associations has been set up to develop the project plan for the full development of the ITER bolometer diagnostic and to continue urgent R&D activities. An overview of the current status is given, including detector development, line-of-sight optimization, performance analysis as well as the design of the diagnostic components and their integration in ITER. This is complemented by the presentation of plans for future activities required to successfully implement the bolometer diagnostic, ranging from the detector development over diagnostic design and prototype testing to RH tools for calibration. PMID:19044656

  14. Instrumentation and diagnostics

    SciTech Connect

    Nakaishi, C.V.; Bedick, R.C.

    1990-12-01

    This Technology Status Report describes research and accomplishments for the Instrumentation and Diagnostics (I D) Projects within the Advanced Research and Technology Development (AR TD) Program of the United States Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy (FE). Process understanding and control can be improved through the development of advanced instrumentation and diagnostics. The thrust of the I D Projects is to further develop existing measurement and control techniques for application to advanced coal-based technologies. Project highlights are: an inductively coupled plasma (ICP) instrument has been developed to analyze trace elements in gasification and combustion process streams. An in situ two-color Mie scattering technique with LSS can simultaneously measure the size, velocity, and elemental composition of coal particles during combustion. A high-temperature, fluorescence thermometry technique has accurately measured gas temperatures during field testing in combustion and gasification environments. Expert systems have been developed to improve the control of advanced coal-based processes. Capacitance flowmeters were developed to determine the mass flowrate, solid volume fraction, and particle velocities of coal slurries. 32 refs., 9 figs.

  15. Toward Accurate and Quantitative Comparative Metagenomics.

    PubMed

    Nayfach, Stephen; Pollard, Katherine S

    2016-08-25

    Shotgun metagenomics and computational analysis are used to compare the taxonomic and functional profiles of microbial communities. Leveraging this approach to understand roles of microbes in human biology and other environments requires quantitative data summaries whose values are comparable across samples and studies. Comparability is currently hampered by the use of abundance statistics that do not estimate a meaningful parameter of the microbial community and biases introduced by experimental protocols and data-cleaning approaches. Addressing these challenges, along with improving study design, data access, metadata standardization, and analysis tools, will enable accurate comparative metagenomics. We envision a future in which microbiome studies are replicable and new metagenomes are easily and rapidly integrated with existing data. Only then can the potential of metagenomics for predictive ecological modeling, well-powered association studies, and effective microbiome medicine be fully realized. PMID:27565341

  16. Designing diagnostic workstations for neuroradiology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valentino, Daniel J.; Bhushan, Vikas; Johnson, Sandra L.; Bentsen, John R.

    1995-05-01

    Despite over a decade of development, diagnostic radiology workstations have not gained popular acceptance by radiologists. Among the requirements for a clinically acceptable workstation are good image quality, a well designed user-interface, and access to ancillary diagnostic information. The user-interface should reflect radiologists' film reading habits and encourage new reading methods that take advantage of the electronic environment. We documented neuroradiologists' reading habits and used software engineering tools to design interfaces that could provide rapid access to common diagnostic tasks in neuroradiology. We used an embedded configuration tool to prototype layouts for specific clinical cases on a commercial workstation, and database integration and user-interface design tools to develop interfaces for browsing medical records. We then designed an image presentation model using the concept of a `virtual view box' for the rapid browsing and pairwise comparison of images. We used the interface design tools to prototype the `virtual view box' on commercially available hardware and tested it with experienced neuroradiologists.

  17. 2009 Laser Diagnostics in Combustion GRC

    SciTech Connect

    Volker Sick

    2009-08-16

    Non-intrusive laser diagnostics for the spatially and temporally resolved measurement of temperature, chemical composition, and flow parameters have emerged over the last few decades as major tools for the study of both fundamental and applied combustion science. Many of the important advances in the field can be attributed to the discussions and ideas emanating from this meeting. This conference, originating in 1981 and held biennially, focuses on laser-based methods for measurement of both macroscopic parameters and the underlying microscale physical and chemical processes. Applications are discussed primarily to elucidate new chemical and physical issues and/or interferences that need to be addressed to improve the accuracy and precision of the various diagnostic approaches or to challenge the community of diagnosticians to invent new measurement techniques. Combustion environments present special challenges to the optical diagnostics community as they address measurements relevant to turbulence, spray and mixture formation, or turbulence/chemistry interactions important in practical combustion systems as well as fundamental chemical reactions in stationary laminar flames. The diagnostics considered may be generally classed as being incoherent, where the signals are radiated isotropically, or coherent, where the signals are generated in a directed, beam-like fashion. Both of the foregoing may employ either electronic or Raman resonance enhancement or a combination of both. Prominent incoherent approaches include laser induced fluorescence (LIF), spontaneous Raman scattering, Rayleigh scattering, laser induced incandescence, molecular flow tagging, and Mie scattering and their two- and three-dimensional imaging variants. Coherent approaches include coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS), degenerate four wave mixing (DFWM), polarization spectroscopy (PS), laser induced grating spectroscopy (LIGS) and laser-based absorption spectroscopy. Spectroscopic

  18. The differential diagnostic accuracy of the PTSD Checklist among men versus women in a community sample.

    PubMed

    Parker-Guilbert, Kelly S; Leifker, Feea R; Sippel, Lauren M; Marshall, Amy D

    2014-12-15

    We evaluated the specific version of the PTSD Checklist (PCL-S) as a screening tool for the recruitment of community-residing men and women with diverse trauma experiences. We administered the PCL-S via telephone in the context of participant recruitment, as well as in a laboratory setting preceding administration of the Clinician Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS), the gold standard PTSD assessment tool. In the laboratory, the PCL-S performed reasonably well for men and women, yielding overall diagnostic efficiency (ODE) values (representing percentage of cases accurately identified) of 0.78 and 0.73, respectively, for our recommended cut-points of 42 for men and 49 for women. In contrast, as a recruitment tool, the PCL-S yielded an acceptable ODE of 0.79 for men at the recommended cut-point of 47, but only an ODE of 0.56 (representing diagnostic efficiency no greater than chance) for women at the recommended cut-point of 50. A recruitment cut-point of 57 for women yields a similarly modest ODE of 0.61, but with substantial cost to sensitivity. These findings suggest that use of the PCL-S to screen for PTSD among potential study participants may lead to gender biased study results, even when separate diagnostic cut-points for men and women are used. PMID:25190345

  19. Towards Accurate Application Characterization for Exascale (APEX)

    SciTech Connect

    Hammond, Simon David

    2015-09-01

    Sandia National Laboratories has been engaged in hardware and software codesign activities for a number of years, indeed, it might be argued that prototyping of clusters as far back as the CPLANT machines and many large capability resources including ASCI Red and RedStorm were examples of codesigned solutions. As the research supporting our codesign activities has moved closer to investigating on-node runtime behavior a nature hunger has grown for detailed analysis of both hardware and algorithm performance from the perspective of low-level operations. The Application Characterization for Exascale (APEX) LDRD was a project concieved of addressing some of these concerns. Primarily the research was to intended to focus on generating accurate and reproducible low-level performance metrics using tools that could scale to production-class code bases. Along side this research was an advocacy and analysis role associated with evaluating tools for production use, working with leading industry vendors to develop and refine solutions required by our code teams and to directly engage with production code developers to form a context for the application analysis and a bridge to the research community within Sandia. On each of these accounts significant progress has been made, particularly, as this report will cover, in the low-level analysis of operations for important classes of algorithms. This report summarizes the development of a collection of tools under the APEX research program and leaves to other SAND and L2 milestone reports the description of codesign progress with Sandia’s production users/developers.

  20. Introduction to DNA-Based Genetic Diagnostics

    PubMed Central

    Glickman, Richard M.; Phillips, M. Ann; Glickman, Barry W.

    1988-01-01

    Molecular biology and recombinant DNA technology are beginning to have an effect on the medical health care field, particularly in the area of clinical genetics. Dramatic improvements in the prerequisite technology are in the process of being transferred from the research lab to routine clinical laboratories. The general practitioner, along with his genetic diagnostic colleagues, can soon expect to have access to accurate and reliable diagnostic assays for a wide variety of genetic disorders. This article introduces the basic technologies involved in genetic diagnostics and provides an indication both of their limitations and their future potential. PMID:21253094