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Sample records for accurate screening tools

  1. BioBloom tools: fast, accurate and memory-efficient host species sequence screening using bloom filters

    PubMed Central

    Chu, Justin; Sadeghi, Sara; Raymond, Anthony; Jackman, Shaun D.; Nip, Ka Ming; Mar, Richard; Mohamadi, Hamid; Butterfield, Yaron S.; Robertson, A. Gordon; Birol, Inanç

    2014-01-01

    Large datasets can be screened for sequences from a specific organism, quickly and with low memory requirements, by a data structure that supports time- and memory-efficient set membership queries. Bloom filters offer such queries but require that false positives be controlled. We present BioBloom Tools, a Bloom filter-based sequence-screening tool that is faster than BWA, Bowtie 2 (popular alignment algorithms) and FACS (a membership query algorithm). It delivers accuracies comparable with these tools, controls false positives and has low memory requirements. Availability and implementaion: www.bcgsc.ca/platform/bioinfo/software/biobloomtools Contact: cjustin@bcgsc.ca or ibirol@bcgsc.ca Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:25143290

  2. Early childhood caries screening tools

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Richard K.; Smaldone, Arlene M.; Edelstein, Burton L.

    2013-01-01

    Background Early childhood caries (ECC) is prevalent and consequential. Risk assessment tools have been proposed that can be used to identify children who require intensive interventions. In this study, the authors compare four approaches for identifying children needing early and intensive intervention to prevent or minimize caries experience for their accuracy and clinical usefulness. Methods The authors screened 229 predominantly low-income Hispanic children younger than 3 years with ECC and 242 without ECC by using the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s Caries-risk Assessment Tool (CAT) and the optional screening measure of culturing Streptococcus mutans. The authors compared four approaches (CAT, CAT minus socioeconomic status, CAT minus socioeconomic status plus mutans streptococci [MS] and MS alone) for accuracy and clinical usefulness. Results The results of the CAT demonstrated high sensitivity (100.0 percent) and negative predictive value (NPV) (100.0 percent) but low specificity (2.9 percent) and positive predictive value (PPV) (49.4 percent). The MS culture alone had the highest combination of accuracy and clinical usefulness (sensitivity, 86.5 percent; specificity, 93.4 percent; PPV, 92.5 percent; NPV, 87.9 percent). When we removed the socioeconomic status element, the CAT’s performance improved. Conclusions Salivary culture of MS alone in a population of young, low-income Hispanic children outperformed the CAT and variations on the CAT for test accuracy (sensitivity and specificity) and clinical usefulness (predictive values). Clinical Implications Screening for ECC by using salivary MS cultures and variations on the CAT are promising approaches for identifying children who need early and intensive intervention to prevent or minimize caries experience. PMID:22751977

  3. 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.

  4. Screening for Intimate Partner Violence in Orthopedic Patients: A Comparison of Three Screening Tools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sprague, Sheila; Madden, Kim; Dosanjh, Sonia; Petrisor, Brad; Schemitsch, Emil H.; Bhandari, Mohit

    2012-01-01

    Accurately identifying victims of intimate partner violence (IPV) can be a challenge for clinicians and clinical researchers. Multiple instruments have been developed and validated to identify IPV in patients presenting to health care practitioners, including the Woman Abuse Screening Tool (WAST) and the Partner Violence Screen (PVS). The purpose…

  5. Screening and Evaluation Tool (SET) Users Guide

    SciTech Connect

    Layne Pincock

    2014-10-01

    This document is the users guide to using the Screening and Evaluation Tool (SET). SET is a tool for comparing multiple fuel cycle options against a common set of criteria and metrics. It does this using standard multi-attribute utility decision analysis methods.

  6. Ocular Emergencies: Screening Tool and Alert Protocol.

    PubMed

    Coronica, Rolly; Murty, Cailin

    2015-01-01

    Ocular emergencies such as central retinal artery occlusion, open globe injuries, eye chemical burns, retrobulbar hemorrhage, retinal detachment, and acute angle-closure glaucoma can result in vision loss. Diagnosis is based on astute screening, which can be guided by the OAP screening tool used by ophthalmic nurses engaged in triaging patients presenting with symptoms indicative of emergent vision or eye changes. The OAP provides direction to ophthalmic team members for treatment and management of ocular emergencies.

  7. High Throughput Screening Tools for Thermoelectric Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong-Ng, W.; Yan, Y.; Otani, M.; Martin, J.; Talley, K. R.; Barron, S.; Carroll, D. L.; Hewitt, C.; Joress, H.; Thomas, E. L.; Green, M. L.; Tang, X. F.

    2015-06-01

    A suite of complementary high-throughput screening systems for combinatorial films was developed at National Institute of Standards and Technology to facilitate the search for efficient thermoelectric materials. These custom-designed capabilities include a facility for combinatorial thin film synthesis and a suite of tools for screening the Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistance (electrical resistivity), and thermal effusivity (thermal conductivity) of these films. The Seebeck coefficient and resistance are measured via custom-built automated apparatus at both ambient and high temperatures. Thermal effusivity is measured using a frequency domain thermoreflectance technique. This paper will discuss applications using these tools on representative thermoelectric materials, including combinatorial composition-spread films, conventional films, single crystals, and ribbons.

  8. Zebrafish: A tool for chemical screens.

    PubMed

    Tsang, Michael

    2010-09-01

    The zebrafish has proven to be an invaluable vertebrate animal model for developmental biology. Recent technological advances have added an arsenal of tools to expand its use into the realm of drug discovery. This includes methodology to generate transgenic reporter lines that allow for the direct visualization of fluorescent markers in live embryos. With the addition of automated imaging and analysis of embryos treated with small molecules, these innovations have expanded its utility into high throughput chemical screens. This review will highlight some of these advances that have propelled zebrafish as a tool for drug discovery.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Nutrition screening tools: an analysis of the evidence.

    PubMed

    Skipper, Annalynn; Ferguson, Maree; Thompson, Kyle; Castellanos, Victoria H; Porcari, Judy

    2012-05-01

    In response to questions about tools for nutrition screening, an evidence analysis project was developed to identify the most valid and reliable nutrition screening tools for use in acute care and hospital-based ambulatory care settings. An oversight group defined nutrition screening and literature search criteria. A trained analyst conducted structured searches of the literature for studies of nutrition screening tools according to predetermined criteria. Eleven nutrition screening tools designed to detect undernutrition in patients in acute care and hospital-based ambulatory care were identified. Trained analysts evaluated articles for quality using criteria specified by the American Dietetic Association's Evidence Analysis Library. Members of the oversight group assigned quality grades to the tools based on the quality of the supporting evidence, including reliability and validity data. One tool, the NRS-2002, received a grade I, and 4 tools-the Simple Two-Part Tool, the Mini-Nutritional Assessment-Short Form (MNA-SF), the Malnutrition Screening Tool (MST), and Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (MUST)-received a grade II. The MST was the only tool shown to be both valid and reliable for identifying undernutrition in the settings studied. Thus, validated nutrition screening tools that are simple and easy to use are available for application in acute care and hospital-based ambulatory care settings. PMID:22045723

  12. 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

  13. Validity of Nutritional Screening Tools for Hospitalized Children

    PubMed Central

    Djais, Julistio T. B.; Rosalina, Ina

    2014-01-01

    Background. Malnutrition in hospitalized children can be prevented if children with risk of malnutrition are identified. Every hospital is recommended to have a standard nutritional screening tool. Numerous simple screening tools have been developed, namely Paediatric Yorkhill Malnutrition Score (PYMS), Screening Tool for the Assessment of Malnutrition in Paediatrics (STAMP), and Screening Tool for Risk on Nutritional Status and Growth (STRONG-kids). None has been accepted as a universal tool. Our study aims to determine the best screening tools compared to Subjective Global Nutrition Assessment (SGNA), an assessment tool which is more complex as our gold standard. Methods. This diagnostic study involved 116 patients aged 1–15 years. Three screening tools and SGNA were examined to each subject. Statistical analysis was used to determine sensitivity, specificity, and likelihood ratio (LR) by results from screening tools divided into low and moderate-high risk of malnutrition compared to results from SGNA divided into no and moderate-severe malnutrition. Results. PYMS showed superior agreement to SGNA resulting in sensitivity 95.32%, specificity 76.92%, positive LR 4.13, and negative LR 0.061. STAMP resulted in sensitivity, specificity, positive LR, and negative LR, respectively, as 100%, 11.54%, 1.13, and 0 and STRONG-kids resulted in 100%, 7.7%, 1.083, and 0. Conclusion. PYMS was the most reliable screening tool. PMID:25298890

  14. Validity of nutritional screening tools for hospitalized children.

    PubMed

    Wonoputri, Nathania; Djais, Julistio T B; Rosalina, Ina

    2014-01-01

    Background. Malnutrition in hospitalized children can be prevented if children with risk of malnutrition are identified. Every hospital is recommended to have a standard nutritional screening tool. Numerous simple screening tools have been developed, namely Paediatric Yorkhill Malnutrition Score (PYMS), Screening Tool for the Assessment of Malnutrition in Paediatrics (STAMP), and Screening Tool for Risk on Nutritional Status and Growth (STRONG-kids). None has been accepted as a universal tool. Our study aims to determine the best screening tools compared to Subjective Global Nutrition Assessment (SGNA), an assessment tool which is more complex as our gold standard. Methods. This diagnostic study involved 116 patients aged 1-15 years. Three screening tools and SGNA were examined to each subject. Statistical analysis was used to determine sensitivity, specificity, and likelihood ratio (LR) by results from screening tools divided into low and moderate-high risk of malnutrition compared to results from SGNA divided into no and moderate-severe malnutrition. Results. PYMS showed superior agreement to SGNA resulting in sensitivity 95.32%, specificity 76.92%, positive LR 4.13, and negative LR 0.061. STAMP resulted in sensitivity, specificity, positive LR, and negative LR, respectively, as 100%, 11.54%, 1.13, and 0 and STRONG-kids resulted in 100%, 7.7%, 1.083, and 0. Conclusion. PYMS was the most reliable screening tool.

  15. Eating disorders in female athletes: use of screening tools.

    PubMed

    Knapp, Jessica; Aerni, Giselle; Anderson, Jeffrey

    2014-01-01

    Screening female athletes for eating disorders is not performed commonly even though the American College of Sports Medicine, National Athletic Trainer Association, and International Olympic Committee have guidelines recommending screening. Eating disorders are more prevalent in the female athlete population than in the general population and carry short-term and long-term consequences that can affect sport performance. There are several screening tools available that have been studied in the general population and fewer tools that were validated specifically in female athletes. Female athletes with eating disorder pathology often have different factors and environmental pressures contributing to their pathology that can be identified best with an athlete-specific screening tool. We will discuss various screening tools available and the evidence for each one. Screening for eating disorders in all female athletes is an important part of the preparticipation examination and should be done using a tool specifically validated for the female athlete.

  16. Eating disorders in female athletes: use of screening tools.

    PubMed

    Knapp, Jessica; Aerni, Giselle; Anderson, Jeffrey

    2014-01-01

    Screening female athletes for eating disorders is not performed commonly even though the American College of Sports Medicine, National Athletic Trainer Association, and International Olympic Committee have guidelines recommending screening. Eating disorders are more prevalent in the female athlete population than in the general population and carry short-term and long-term consequences that can affect sport performance. There are several screening tools available that have been studied in the general population and fewer tools that were validated specifically in female athletes. Female athletes with eating disorder pathology often have different factors and environmental pressures contributing to their pathology that can be identified best with an athlete-specific screening tool. We will discuss various screening tools available and the evidence for each one. Screening for eating disorders in all female athletes is an important part of the preparticipation examination and should be done using a tool specifically validated for the female athlete. PMID:25014386

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Use of the Child Behavior Checklist as a Diagnostic Screening Tool in Community Mental Health

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rishel, Carrie W.; Greeno, Catherine; Marcus, Steven C.; Shear, M. Katherine; Anderson, Carol

    2005-01-01

    Objective: This study examines whether the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) can be used as an accurate psychiatric screening tool for children in community mental health settings. Method: Associations, logistic regression models, and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis were used to test the predictive relationship between the CBCL and…

  1. DEMONSTRATION BULLETIN: RAPID OPTICAL SCREEN TOOL (ROST™) - LORAL CORPORATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Loral Rapid Optical Screen Tool (ROST™) is a tunable dye laser system used for the detection of petroleum, semi-volatile, and some volatile organic compounds in soils. The technology is used in conjunction with a cone penetrometer (CP).

  2. Accurate and noninvasive embryos screening during in vitro fertilization (IVF) assisted by Raman analysis of embryos culture medium Accurate and noninvasive embryos screening during IVF

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, A. G.; Peng, J.; Zhao, Q. H.; Su, L.; Wang, X. H.; Hu, J. M.; Yang, J.

    2012-04-01

    In combination with morphological evaluation tests, we employ Raman spectroscopy to select higher potential reproductive embryos during in vitro fertilization (IVF) based on chemical composition of embryos culture medium. In this study, 57 Raman spectra are acquired from both higher and lower quality embryos culture medium (ECM) from 10 patients which have been preliminarily confirmed by clinical assay. Data are fit by using a linear combination model of least squares method in which 12 basis spectra represent the chemical features of ECM. The final fitting coefficients provide insight into the chemical compositions of culture medium samples and are subsequently used as criterion to evaluate the quality of embryos. The relative fitting coefficients ratios of sodium pyruvate/albumin and phenylalanine/albumin seem act as key roles in the embryo screening, attaining 85.7% accuracy in comparison with clinical pregnancy. The good results demonstrate that Raman spectroscopy therefore is an important candidate for an accurate and noninvasive screening of higher quality embryos, which potentially decrease the time-consuming clinical trials during IVF.

  3. Screen Recording: An Essential Classroom Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McArthur, April; Christianson, Jenn; Schafer, Raye; Whitney, Pamela

    2015-01-01

    Technology has opened up avenues for deaf and hard of hearing students that were previously inaccessible. No longer dependent on such equipment as chalkboards and filmstrip projectors, tools such as Smart Boards, computers, and even iPads have become part of the standard educational experience for many children. For teachers at the Washington…

  4. iScreen: Image-Based High-Content RNAi Screening Analysis Tools.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Rui; Dong, Xiaonan; Levine, Beth; Xie, Yang; Xiao, Guanghua

    2015-09-01

    High-throughput RNA interference (RNAi) screening has opened up a path to investigating functional genomics in a genome-wide pattern. However, such studies are often restricted to assays that have a single readout format. Recently, advanced image technologies have been coupled with high-throughput RNAi screening to develop high-content screening, in which one or more cell image(s), instead of a single readout, were generated from each well. This image-based high-content screening technology has led to genome-wide functional annotation in a wider spectrum of biological research studies, as well as in drug and target discovery, so that complex cellular phenotypes can be measured in a multiparametric format. Despite these advances, data analysis and visualization tools are still largely lacking for these types of experiments. Therefore, we developed iScreen (image-Based High-content RNAi Screening Analysis Tool), an R package for the statistical modeling and visualization of image-based high-content RNAi screening. Two case studies were used to demonstrate the capability and efficiency of the iScreen package. iScreen is available for download on CRAN (http://cran.cnr.berkeley.edu/web/packages/iScreen/index.html). The user manual is also available as a supplementary document.

  5. A Screening Tool for Assessing Alcohol Use Risk among Medically Vulnerable Youth

    PubMed Central

    Levy, Sharon; Dedeoglu, Fatma; Gaffin, Jonathan M.; Garvey, Katharine C.; Harstad, Elizabeth; MacGinnitie, Andrew; Rufo, Paul A.; Huang, Qian; Ziemnik, Rosemary E.; Wisk, Lauren E.; Weitzman, Elissa R.

    2016-01-01

    Background In an effort to reduce barriers to screening for alcohol use in pediatric primary care, the National Institute on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse (NIAAA) developed a two-question Youth Alcohol Screening Tool derived from population-based survey data. It is unknown whether this screening tool, designed for use with general populations, accurately identifies risk among youth with chronic medical conditions (YCMC). This growing population, which comprises nearly one in four youth in the US, faces a unique constellation of drinking-related risks. Method To validate the NIAAA Youth Alcohol Screening Tool in a population of YCMC, we performed a cross-sectional validation study with a sample of 388 youth ages 9–18 years presenting for routine subspecialty care at a large children’s hospital for type 1 diabetes, persistent asthma, cystic fibrosis, inflammatory bowel disease, or juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Participants self-administered the NIAAA Youth Alcohol Screening Tool and the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children as a criterion standard measure of alcohol use disorders (AUD). Receiver operating curve analysis was used to determine cut points for identifying youth at moderate and highest risk for an AUD. Results Nearly one third of participants (n = 118; 30.4%) reported alcohol use in the past year; 86.4% (106) of past year drinkers did not endorse any AUD criteria, 6.8% (n = 8) of drinkers endorsed a single criterion, and 6.8% of drinkers met criteria for an AUD. Using the NIAAA tool, optimal cut points found to identify youth at moderate and highest risk for an AUD were ≥ 6 and ≥12 drinking days in the past year, respectively. Conclusions The NIAAA Youth Alcohol Screening Tool is highly efficient for detecting alcohol use and discriminating disordered use among YCMC. This brief screen appears feasible for use in specialty care to ascertain alcohol-related risk that may impact adversely on health status and disease management. PMID:27227975

  6. Pitfalls in accurate estimation of overdiagnosis: implications for screening policy and compliance.

    PubMed

    Feig, Stephen A

    2013-01-01

    Stories in the public media that 30 to 50% of screen-detected breast cancers are overdiagnosed dissuade women from being screened because overdiagnosed cancers would never result in death if undetected yet do result in unnecessary treatment. However, such concerns are unwarranted because the frequency of overdiagnosis, when properly calculated, is only 0 to 5%. In the previous issue of Breast Cancer Research, Duffy and Parmar report that accurate estimation of the rate of overdiagnosis recognizes the effect of lead time on detection rates and the consequent requirement for an adequate number of years of follow-up. These indispensable elements were absent from highly publicized studies that overestimated the frequency of overdiagnosis.

  7. Graphical arterial blood gas visualization tool supports rapid and accurate data interpretation.

    PubMed

    Doig, Alexa K; Albert, Robert W; Syroid, Noah D; Moon, Shaun; Agutter, Jim A

    2011-04-01

    A visualization tool that integrates numeric information from an arterial blood gas report with novel graphics was designed for the purpose of promoting rapid and accurate interpretation of acid-base data. A study compared data interpretation performance when arterial blood gas results were presented in a traditional numerical list versus the graphical visualization tool. Critical-care nurses (n = 15) and nursing students (n = 15) were significantly more accurate identifying acid-base states and assessing trends in acid-base data when using the graphical visualization tool. Critical-care nurses and nursing students using traditional numerical data had an average accuracy of 69% and 74%, respectively. Using the visualization tool, average accuracy improved to 83% for critical-care nurses and 93% for nursing students. Analysis of response times demonstrated that the visualization tool might help nurses overcome the "speed/accuracy trade-off" during high-stress situations when rapid decisions must be rendered. Perceived mental workload was significantly reduced for nursing students when they used the graphical visualization tool. In this study, the effects of implementing the graphical visualization were greater for nursing students than for critical-care nurses, which may indicate that the experienced nurses needed more training and use of the new technology prior to testing to show similar gains. Results of the objective and subjective evaluations support the integration of this graphical visualization tool into clinical environments that require accurate and timely interpretation of arterial blood gas data.

  8. Collective screening tools for early identification of dyslexia.

    PubMed

    Andrade, Olga V C A; Andrade, Paulo E; Capellini, Simone A

    2014-01-01

    Current response to intervention models (RTIs) favor a three-tier system. In general, Tier 1 consists of evidence-based, effective reading instruction in the classroom and universal screening of all students at the beginning of the grade level to identify children for early intervention. Non-responders to Tier 1 receive small-group tutoring in Tier 2. Non-responders to Tier 2 are given still more intensive, individual intervention in Tier 3. Limited time, personnel and financial resources derail RTI's implementation in Brazilian schools because this approach involves procedures that require extra time and extra personnel in all three tiers, including screening tools which normally consist of tasks administered individually. We explored the accuracy of collectively and easily administered screening tools for the early identification of second graders at risk for dyslexia in a two-stage screening model. A first-stage universal screening based on collectively administered curriculum-based measurements was used in 45 7 years old early Portuguese readers from 4 second-grade classrooms at the beginning of the school year and identified an at-risk group of 13 academic low-achievers. Collectively administered tasks based on phonological judgments by matching figures and figures to spoken words [alternative tools for educators (ATE)] and a comprehensive cognitive-linguistic battery of collective and individual assessments were both administered to all children and constituted the second-stage screening. Low-achievement on ATE tasks and on collectively administered writing tasks (scores at the 25th percentile) showed good sensitivity (true positives) and specificity (true negatives) to poor literacy status defined as scores ≤1 SD below the mean on literacy abilities at the end of fifth grade. These results provide implications for the use of a collectively administered screening tool for the early identification of children at risk for dyslexia in a classroom setting. PMID

  9. Collective screening tools for early identification of dyslexia

    PubMed Central

    Andrade, Olga V. C. A.; Andrade, Paulo E.; Capellini, Simone A.

    2015-01-01

    Current response to intervention models (RTIs) favor a three-tier system. In general, Tier 1 consists of evidence-based, effective reading instruction in the classroom and universal screening of all students at the beginning of the grade level to identify children for early intervention. Non-responders to Tier 1 receive small-group tutoring in Tier 2. Non-responders to Tier 2 are given still more intensive, individual intervention in Tier 3. Limited time, personnel and financial resources derail RTI’s implementation in Brazilian schools because this approach involves procedures that require extra time and extra personnel in all three tiers, including screening tools which normally consist of tasks administered individually. We explored the accuracy of collectively and easily administered screening tools for the early identification of second graders at risk for dyslexia in a two-stage screening model. A first-stage universal screening based on collectively administered curriculum-based measurements was used in 45 7 years old early Portuguese readers from 4 second-grade classrooms at the beginning of the school year and identified an at-risk group of 13 academic low-achievers. Collectively administered tasks based on phonological judgments by matching figures and figures to spoken words [alternative tools for educators (ATE)] and a comprehensive cognitive-linguistic battery of collective and individual assessments were both administered to all children and constituted the second-stage screening. Low-achievement on ATE tasks and on collectively administered writing tasks (scores at the 25th percentile) showed good sensitivity (true positives) and specificity (true negatives) to poor literacy status defined as scores ≤1 SD below the mean on literacy abilities at the end of fifth grade. These results provide implications for the use of a collectively administered screening tool for the early identification of children at risk for dyslexia in a classroom setting

  10. Fast, Accurate RF Propagation Modeling and Simulation Tool for Highly Cluttered Environments

    SciTech Connect

    Kuruganti, Phani Teja

    2007-01-01

    As network centric warfare and distributed operations paradigms unfold, there is a need for robust, fast wireless network deployment tools. These tools must take into consideration the terrain of the operating theater, and facilitate specific modeling of end to end network performance based on accurate RF propagation predictions. It is well known that empirical models can not provide accurate, site specific predictions of radio channel behavior. In this paper an event-driven wave propagation simulation is proposed as a computationally efficient technique for predicting critical propagation characteristics of RF signals in cluttered environments. Convincing validation and simulator performance studies confirm the suitability of this method for indoor and urban area RF channel modeling. By integrating our RF propagation prediction tool, RCSIM, with popular packetlevel network simulators, we are able to construct an end to end network analysis tool for wireless networks operated in built-up urban areas.

  11. A feasibility study of UHPLC-HRMS accurate-mass screening methods for multiclass testing of organic contaminants in food.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Ortega, Patricia; Lara-Ortega, Felipe J; García-Reyes, Juan F; Gilbert-López, Bienvenida; Trojanowicz, Marek; Molina-Díaz, Antonio

    2016-11-01

    The feasibility of accurate-mass multi-residue screening methods using liquid chromatography high-resolution mass spectrometry (UHPLC-HRMS) using time-of-flight mass spectrometry has been evaluated, including over 625 multiclass food contaminants as case study. Aspects such as the selectivity and confirmation capability provided by HRMS with different acquisition modes (full-scan or full-scan combined with collision induced dissociation (CID) with no precursor ion isolation), and chromatographic separation along with main limitations such as sensitivity or automated data processing have been examined. Compound identification was accomplished with retention time matching and accurate mass measurements of the targeted ions for each analyte (mainly (de)protonated molecules). Compounds with the same nominal mass (isobaric species) were very frequent due to the large number of compounds included. Although 76% of database compounds were involved in isobaric groups, they were resolved in most cases (99% of these isobaric species were distinguished by retention time, resolving power, isotopic profile or fragment ions). Only three pairs could not be resolved with these tools. In-source CID fragmentation was evaluated in depth, although the results obtained in terms of information provided were not as thorough as those obtained using fragmentation experiments without precursor ion isolation (all ion mode). The latter acquisition mode was found to be the best suited for this type of large-scale screening method instead of classic product ion scan, as provided excellent fragmentation information for confirmatory purposes for an unlimited number of compounds. Leaving aside the sample treatment limitations, the main weaknesses noticed are basically the relatively low sensitivity for compounds which does not map well against electrospray ionization and also quantitation issues such as those produced by signal suppression due to either matrix effects from coeluting matrix or from

  12. A feasibility study of UHPLC-HRMS accurate-mass screening methods for multiclass testing of organic contaminants in food.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Ortega, Patricia; Lara-Ortega, Felipe J; García-Reyes, Juan F; Gilbert-López, Bienvenida; Trojanowicz, Marek; Molina-Díaz, Antonio

    2016-11-01

    The feasibility of accurate-mass multi-residue screening methods using liquid chromatography high-resolution mass spectrometry (UHPLC-HRMS) using time-of-flight mass spectrometry has been evaluated, including over 625 multiclass food contaminants as case study. Aspects such as the selectivity and confirmation capability provided by HRMS with different acquisition modes (full-scan or full-scan combined with collision induced dissociation (CID) with no precursor ion isolation), and chromatographic separation along with main limitations such as sensitivity or automated data processing have been examined. Compound identification was accomplished with retention time matching and accurate mass measurements of the targeted ions for each analyte (mainly (de)protonated molecules). Compounds with the same nominal mass (isobaric species) were very frequent due to the large number of compounds included. Although 76% of database compounds were involved in isobaric groups, they were resolved in most cases (99% of these isobaric species were distinguished by retention time, resolving power, isotopic profile or fragment ions). Only three pairs could not be resolved with these tools. In-source CID fragmentation was evaluated in depth, although the results obtained in terms of information provided were not as thorough as those obtained using fragmentation experiments without precursor ion isolation (all ion mode). The latter acquisition mode was found to be the best suited for this type of large-scale screening method instead of classic product ion scan, as provided excellent fragmentation information for confirmatory purposes for an unlimited number of compounds. Leaving aside the sample treatment limitations, the main weaknesses noticed are basically the relatively low sensitivity for compounds which does not map well against electrospray ionization and also quantitation issues such as those produced by signal suppression due to either matrix effects from coeluting matrix or from

  13. Screening Tools to Estimate Mold Burdens in Homes

    EPA Science Inventory

    Objective: The objective of this study was to develop screening tools that could be used to estimate the mold burden in a home which would indicate whether more detailed testing might be useful. Methods: Previously, in the American Healthy Home Survey, a DNA-based method of an...

  14. THE USEPA'S METAL FINISHING FACILITY RISK SCREENING TOOL (MFFRST)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The US Environmetal ProtectionAgenccy's Metal Finishing
    Facility Risk Screening Tool (MFFRST)

    William M. Barrett Jr, Ph.D. , P.E. ; Paul Harten, Ph.D.1, and Matthew Lorber

    The US Environmental Protection Agency completed the development of the first version of...

  15. DEVELOPMENT OF THE METAL FINISHING FACILITY RISK SCREENING TOOL (MFFRST)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Recently the US EPA completed the development of the first version of the Metal Finishing Facility Risk Screening Tool (MFFRST) and has made this product available to the general public. MFFRST calculates the air emissions from a metal plating line and determines the risk to bot...

  16. DEVELOPMENT OF THE METAL FINISHING FACILITY RISK SCREENING TOOL

    EPA Science Inventory

    Enhancement of the US Environmental Protection Agency's
    Metal Finishing Facility Risk Screening Tool (MFFRST)

    William M. Barrett Jr, Ph.D., P.E. , P.E.; Paul Harten, Ph.D.1, Matt Lorber , Charles Peck , and Steve Schwartz, P.E., Q.E.P.3

    Recently, the US Environ...

  17. THE USEPA'S METAL FINISHING FACILITY RISK SCREENING TOOL (MFFRST) AND POLLUTION PREVENTION TOOL (MFFP2T)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation will provide an overview of the USEPA's Metal Finishing Facility Risk Screening Tool, including a discussion of the models used and outputs. The tool is currently being expanded to include pollution prevention considerations as part of the model. The current st...

  18. Clinical Screening Tools for Sarcopenia and Its Management

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Solomon C. Y.; Khow, Kareeann S. F.; Jadczak, Agathe D.; Visvanathan, Renuka

    2016-01-01

    Sarcopenia, an age-related decline in muscle mass and function, is affecting the older population worldwide. Sarcopenia is associated with poor health outcomes, such as falls, disability, loss of independence, and mortality; however it is potentially treatable if recognized and intervened early. Over the last two decades, there has been significant expansion of research in this area. Currently there is international recognition of a need to identify the condition early for intervention and prevention of the disastrous consequences of sarcopenia if left untreated. There are currently various screening tools proposed. As yet, there is no consensus on the best tool. Effective interventions of sarcopenia include physical exercise and nutrition supplementation. This review paper examined the screening tools and interventions for sarcopenia. PMID:26966433

  19. Clinical Screening Tools for Sarcopenia and Its Management.

    PubMed

    Yu, Solomon C Y; Khow, Kareeann S F; Jadczak, Agathe D; Visvanathan, Renuka

    2016-01-01

    Sarcopenia, an age-related decline in muscle mass and function, is affecting the older population worldwide. Sarcopenia is associated with poor health outcomes, such as falls, disability, loss of independence, and mortality; however it is potentially treatable if recognized and intervened early. Over the last two decades, there has been significant expansion of research in this area. Currently there is international recognition of a need to identify the condition early for intervention and prevention of the disastrous consequences of sarcopenia if left untreated. There are currently various screening tools proposed. As yet, there is no consensus on the best tool. Effective interventions of sarcopenia include physical exercise and nutrition supplementation. This review paper examined the screening tools and interventions for sarcopenia. PMID:26966433

  20. Immunoassay as a screening tool for industrial toxicants

    SciTech Connect

    Pierce, T.

    1986-08-01

    Immunoassay techniques may represent useful screening tools to assist analysts interested in the presence and amounts of organic toxicants in biological fluids. The widespread application of immunoassay methods in medicinal and forensic (drugs of abuse) chemistry has resulted in such screening methodologies. Four methodologies of potential benefit are considered: the free radical assay technique, the enzyme-mediated immunoassay technique, radioimmunoassay, and hemagglutination. Each of these immunoassays is based on the competitive displacement of the labeled drug (or toxicant) from the antibody complex by the unlabeled drug-toxicant in the sample.

  1. Screened exchange hybrid density functional for accurate and efficient structures and interaction energies.

    PubMed

    Brandenburg, Jan Gerit; Caldeweyher, Eike; Grimme, Stefan

    2016-06-21

    We extend the recently introduced PBEh-3c global hybrid density functional [S. Grimme et al., J. Chem. Phys., 2015, 143, 054107] by a screened Fock exchange variant based on the Henderson-Janesko-Scuseria exchange hole model. While the excellent performance of the global hybrid is maintained for small covalently bound molecules, its performance for computed condensed phase mass densities is further improved. Most importantly, a speed up of 30 to 50% can be achieved and especially for small orbital energy gap cases, the method is numerically much more robust. The latter point is important for many applications, e.g., for metal-organic frameworks, organic semiconductors, or protein structures. This enables an accurate density functional based electronic structure calculation of a full DNA helix structure on a single core desktop computer which is presented as an example in addition to comprehensive benchmark results. PMID:27240749

  2. Integrating Diabetes Guidelines into a Telehealth Screening Tool

    PubMed Central

    Gervera, Kelly; Graves, Barbara Ann

    2015-01-01

    Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States and contributes to long-term complications that are costly to healthcare systems. Twenty-five percent of all veterans in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) have diabetes. The purpose of this article is to describe the development and implementation of a quality improvement project to embed an evidence-based diabetes screening tool, based on Veterans Affairs/Department of Defense diabetes clinical practice guidelines, into the VHA electronic medical record. The objectives of the screening tool were threefold: to promote evidence-based care, to standardize care coordination, and to promote self-management and proper utilization of resources. Record reviews were conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the screening tool. Results showed an 88 percent increase in the assessment of annual exams and/or labs, a 16.5 percent increase in disease management assessment and offering of services, and a 50 percent increase in goal-setting activity. PMID:26396557

  3. 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.

  4. Computational tool for the early screening of monoclonal antibodies for their viscosities

    PubMed Central

    Agrawal, Neeraj J; Helk, Bernhard; Kumar, Sandeep; Mody, Neil; Sathish, Hasige A.; Samra, Hardeep S.; Buck, Patrick M; Li, Li; Trout, Bernhardt L

    2016-01-01

    Highly concentrated antibody solutions often exhibit high viscosities, which present a number of challenges for antibody-drug development, manufacturing and administration. The antibody sequence is a key determinant for high viscosity of highly concentrated solutions; therefore, a sequence- or structure-based tool that can identify highly viscous antibodies from their sequence would be effective in ensuring that only antibodies with low viscosity progress to the development phase. Here, we present a spatial charge map (SCM) tool that can accurately identify highly viscous antibodies from their sequence alone (using homology modeling to determine the 3-dimensional structures). The SCM tool has been extensively validated at 3 different organizations, and has proved successful in correctly identifying highly viscous antibodies. As a quantitative tool, SCM is amenable to high-throughput automated analysis, and can be effectively implemented during the antibody screening or engineering phase for the selection of low-viscosity antibodies. PMID:26399600

  5. 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.

  6. Screening Tools to Estimate Mold Burdens in Homes

    SciTech Connect

    Vesper, Sephen J.; McKinstry, Craig A.; Bradham, Karen; Ashley, Peter; Cox, David F.; DeWalt, Gary; Lin, King-teh N.

    2009-01-01

    Objective: The objective of this study was to develop screening tools that could be used to estimate the mold burden in a home which would indicate whether more detailed testing might be useful. Methods: Previously, in the American Healthy Home Survey, a DNA-based method of analysis called mold specific quantitative PCR was used to measure 36 molds in standard protocol dust samples. This resulted in a national index called the Environmental Relative Moldiness Index. In this current study, two possible screening methods were considered: use of the vacuum cleaner bag dust rather than the standard protocol dust samples and reducing the number of molds needed to be quantified resulting in the creation of a simpler mold burden scale. Results: Comparison of vacuum bag and standard dust samples from 157 of the same homes demonstrated that most molds had higher detection rates in vacuum bag dust compared to the standard dust samples but the ERMI values were still related to each other. The second approach to simplifying the screening for mold burdens produced a correlated (ρ=0.80) index to the ERMI called the American Relative Moldiness Index (ARMI) which requires the analysis of only 12 species. Conclusions: Vacuum bag dust sample ERMI values were predictive in placing a home into the lower or upper 50% of homes on the ERMI scale. If it is not possible to obtain the standard dust sample, the vacuum cleaner bag dust may be a useful screening tool for estimating mold burdens in homes. If the standard sample is available and a simpler screening test is sought to estimate the mold burden in homes, the ARMI scale might be useful.

  7. 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.

  8. A Highly Accurate Inclusive Cancer Screening Test Using Caenorhabditis elegans Scent Detection

    PubMed Central

    Uozumi, Takayuki; Shinden, Yoshiaki; Mimori, Koshi; Maehara, Yoshihiko; Ueda, Naoko; Hamakawa, Masayuki

    2015-01-01

    Early detection and treatment are of vital importance to the successful eradication of various cancers, and development of economical and non-invasive novel cancer screening systems is critical. Previous reports using canine scent detection demonstrated the existence of cancer-specific odours. However, it is difficult to introduce canine scent recognition into clinical practice because of the need to maintain accuracy. In this study, we developed a Nematode Scent Detection Test (NSDT) using Caenorhabditis elegans to provide a novel highly accurate cancer detection system that is economical, painless, rapid and convenient. We demonstrated wild-type C. elegans displayed attractive chemotaxis towards human cancer cell secretions, cancer tissues and urine from cancer patients but avoided control urine; in parallel, the response of the olfactory neurons of C. elegans to the urine from cancer patients was significantly stronger than to control urine. In contrast, G protein α mutants and olfactory neurons-ablated animals were not attracted to cancer patient urine, suggesting that C. elegans senses odours in urine. We tested 242 samples to measure the performance of the NSDT, and found the sensitivity was 95.8%; this is markedly higher than that of other existing tumour markers. Furthermore, the specificity was 95.0%. Importantly, this test was able to diagnose various cancer types tested at the early stage (stage 0 or 1). To conclude, C. elegans scent-based analyses might provide a new strategy to detect and study disease-associated scents. PMID:25760772

  9. Automated cell analysis tool for a genome-wide RNAi screen with support vector machine based supervised learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Remmele, Steffen; Ritzerfeld, Julia; Nickel, Walter; Hesser, Jürgen

    2011-03-01

    RNAi-based high-throughput microscopy screens have become an important tool in biological sciences in order to decrypt mostly unknown biological functions of human genes. However, manual analysis is impossible for such screens since the amount of image data sets can often be in the hundred thousands. Reliable automated tools are thus required to analyse the fluorescence microscopy image data sets usually containing two or more reaction channels. The herein presented image analysis tool is designed to analyse an RNAi screen investigating the intracellular trafficking and targeting of acylated Src kinases. In this specific screen, a data set consists of three reaction channels and the investigated cells can appear in different phenotypes. The main issue of the image processing task is an automatic cell segmentation which has to be robust and accurate for all different phenotypes and a successive phenotype classification. The cell segmentation is done in two steps by segmenting the cell nuclei first and then using a classifier-enhanced region growing on basis of the cell nuclei to segment the cells. The classification of the cells is realized by a support vector machine which has to be trained manually using supervised learning. Furthermore, the tool is brightness invariant allowing different staining quality and it provides a quality control that copes with typical defects during preparation and acquisition. A first version of the tool has already been successfully applied for an RNAi-screen containing three hundred thousand image data sets and the SVM extended version is designed for additional screens.

  10. IVUSAngio tool: a publicly available software for fast and accurate 3D reconstruction of coronary arteries.

    PubMed

    Doulaverakis, Charalampos; Tsampoulatidis, Ioannis; Antoniadis, Antonios P; Chatzizisis, Yiannis S; Giannopoulos, Andreas; Kompatsiaris, Ioannis; Giannoglou, George D

    2013-11-01

    There is an ongoing research and clinical interest in the development of reliable and easily accessible software for the 3D reconstruction of coronary arteries. In this work, we present the architecture and validation of IVUSAngio Tool, an application which performs fast and accurate 3D reconstruction of the coronary arteries by using intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) and biplane angiography data. The 3D reconstruction is based on the fusion of the detected arterial boundaries in IVUS images with the 3D IVUS catheter path derived from the biplane angiography. The IVUSAngio Tool suite integrates all the intermediate processing and computational steps and provides a user-friendly interface. It also offers additional functionality, such as automatic selection of the end-diastolic IVUS images, semi-automatic and automatic IVUS segmentation, vascular morphometric measurements, graphical visualization of the 3D model and export in a format compatible with other computer-aided design applications. Our software was applied and validated in 31 human coronary arteries yielding quite promising results. Collectively, the use of IVUSAngio Tool significantly reduces the total processing time for 3D coronary reconstruction. IVUSAngio Tool is distributed as free software, publicly available to download and use.

  11. Nutritional screening: a user-friendly tool adapted from Sweden.

    PubMed

    Smith, Steve; Westergren, Albert; Saunders, Julia; Hagell, Peter

    Screening for undernutrition is highly important and may reduce morbidity and mortality. The Minimal Eating Observation and Nutrition Form Version II (MEONF-II) is a nutritional screening tool specifically developed for use by nurses. The authors describe the translation, performance and appropriateness of MEONF-II for the UK. Following translation from Swedish to British English, the user-friendliness and appropriateness of the British MEONF-II was tested by 29 registered nurses and final-year student nurses on 266 hospital inpatients. The new British MEONF-II was perceived as highly user-friendly and appropriate. Assessors found MEONF-II to compare favourably with other similar tools in terms of preference, usefulness and helpfulness in providing good nutritional care. Dependency in activities and poorer subjective health were associated with a higher risk of undernutrition. These findings support the appropriateness of the British MEONF-II version and suggest it may act as a user-friendly facilitator for good nutritional nursing care.

  12. AMMOS: Automated Molecular Mechanics Optimization tool for in silico Screening

    PubMed Central

    Pencheva, Tania; Lagorce, David; Pajeva, Ilza; Villoutreix, Bruno O; Miteva, Maria A

    2008-01-01

    Background Virtual or in silico ligand screening combined with other computational methods is one of the most promising methods to search for new lead compounds, thereby greatly assisting the drug discovery process. Despite considerable progresses made in virtual screening methodologies, available computer programs do not easily address problems such as: structural optimization of compounds in a screening library, receptor flexibility/induced-fit, and accurate prediction of protein-ligand interactions. It has been shown that structural optimization of chemical compounds and that post-docking optimization in multi-step structure-based virtual screening approaches help to further improve the overall efficiency of the methods. To address some of these points, we developed the program AMMOS for refining both, the 3D structures of the small molecules present in chemical libraries and the predicted receptor-ligand complexes through allowing partial to full atom flexibility through molecular mechanics optimization. Results The program AMMOS carries out an automatic procedure that allows for the structural refinement of compound collections and energy minimization of protein-ligand complexes using the open source program AMMP. The performance of our package was evaluated by comparing the structures of small chemical entities minimized by AMMOS with those minimized with the Tripos and MMFF94s force fields. Next, AMMOS was used for full flexible minimization of protein-ligands complexes obtained from a mutli-step virtual screening. Enrichment studies of the selected pre-docked complexes containing 60% of the initially added inhibitors were carried out with or without final AMMOS minimization on two protein targets having different binding pocket properties. AMMOS was able to improve the enrichment after the pre-docking stage with 40 to 60% of the initially added active compounds found in the top 3% to 5% of the entire compound collection. Conclusion The open source AMMOS

  13. 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.

  14. The Graz Malnutrition Screening (GMS): a new hospital screening tool for malnutrition.

    PubMed

    Roller, Regina E; Eglseer, Doris; Eisenberger, Anna; Wirnsberger, Gerhard H

    2016-02-28

    Despite the significant impact of malnutrition in hospitalised patients, it is often not identified by clinical staff in daily practice. To improve nutritional support in hospitals, standardised routine nutritional screening is essential. The Graz Malnutrition Screening (GMS) tool was developed for the purpose of malnutrition risk screening in a large hospital setting involving different departments. It was the aim of the present study to validate the GMS against Nutritional Risk Screening (NRS) and Mini Nutritional Assessment-short form (MNA-sf) in a randomised blinded manner. A total of 404 randomly selected patients admitted to the internal, surgical and orthopaedic wards of the University Hospital Graz were screened in a blinded manner by different raters. Concurrent validity was determined by comparing the GMS with the NRS and in older patients (70+ years) with the MNA-sf additionally. According to GMS, 31·9 or 28·5% of the admitted patients were categorised as at 'risk of malnutrition' (depending on the rater). According to the reference standard of NRS, 24·5% of the patients suffered from malnutrition. Pearson's r values of 0·78 compared with the NRS and 0·84 compared with the MNA showed strong positive correlations. Results of accuracy (0·85), sensitivity (0·94), specificity (0·77), positive predictive value (0·76) and negative predictive value (0·95) of GMS were also very high. Cohen's κ for internal consistency of the GMS was 0·82. GMS proves to be a valid and reliable instrument for the detection of malnutrition in adult patients in acute-care hospitals.

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

    DOE PAGES

    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

  16. 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.

  17. A screening tool for delineating subregions of steady recharge within groundwater models

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dickinson, Jesse E.; Ferré, T. P. A.; Bakker, Mark; Crompton, Becky

    2014-01-01

    We have developed a screening method for simplifying groundwater models by delineating areas within the domain that can be represented using steady-state groundwater recharge. The screening method is based on an analytical solution for the damping of sinusoidal infiltration variations in homogeneous soils in the vadose zone. The damping depth is defined as the depth at which the flux variation damps to 5% of the variation at the land surface. Groundwater recharge may be considered steady where the damping depth is above the depth of the water table. The analytical solution approximates the vadose zone diffusivity as constant, and we evaluated when this approximation is reasonable. We evaluated the analytical solution through comparison of the damping depth computed by the analytic solution with the damping depth simulated by a numerical model that allows variable diffusivity. This comparison showed that the screening method conservatively identifies areas of steady recharge and is more accurate when water content and diffusivity are nearly constant. Nomograms of the damping factor (the ratio of the flux amplitude at any depth to the amplitude at the land surface) and the damping depth were constructed for clay and sand for periodic variations between 1 and 365 d and flux means and amplitudes from nearly 0 to 1 × 10−3 m d−1. We applied the screening tool to Central Valley, California, to identify areas of steady recharge. A MATLAB script was developed to compute the damping factor for any soil and any sinusoidal flux variation.

  18. 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

  19. Electroantennographic bioassay as a screening tool for host plant volatiles.

    PubMed

    Beck, John J; Light, Douglas M; Gee, Wai S

    2012-01-01

    Plant volatiles play an important role in plant-insect interactions. Herbivorous insects use plant volatiles, known as kairomones, to locate their host plant. When a host plant is an important agronomic commodity feeding damage by insect pests can inflict serious economic losses to growers. Accordingly, kairomones can be used as attractants to lure or confuse these insects and, thus, offer an environmentally friendly alternative to pesticides for insect control. Unfortunately, plants can emit a vast number volatiles with varying compositions and ratios of emissions dependent upon the phenology of the commodity or the time of day. This makes identification of biologically active components or blends of volatile components an arduous process. To help identify the bioactive components of host plant volatile emissions we employ the laboratory-based screening bioassay electroantennography (EAG). EAG is an effective tool to evaluate and record electrophysiologically the olfactory responses of an insect via their antennal receptors. The EAG screening process can help reduce the number of volatiles tested to identify promising bioactive components. However, EAG bioassays only provide information about activation of receptors. It does not provide information about the type of insect behavior the compound elicits; which could be as an attractant, repellent or other type of behavioral response. Volatiles eliciting a significant response by EAG, relative to an appropriate positive control, are typically taken on to further testing of behavioral responses of the insect pest. The experimental design presented will detail the methodology employed to screen almond-based host plant volatiles by measurement of the electrophysiological antennal responses of an adult insect pest navel orangeworm (Amyelois transitella) to single components and simple blends of components via EAG bioassay. The method utilizes two excised antennae placed across a "fork" electrode holder. The protocol

  20. Response to “Accurate Risk-Based Chemical Screening Relies on Robust Exposure Estimates”

    EPA Science Inventory

    This is a correspondence (letter to the editor) with reference to comments by Rudel and Perovich on the article "Integration of Dosimetry, Exposure, and High-Throughput Screening Data in Chemical Toxicity Assessment". Article Reference: SI # 238882

  1. Ground-Water-Withdrawal Component of the Michigan Water-Withdrawal Screening Tool

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reeves, Howard W.; Hamilton, David A.; Seelbach, Paul W.; Asher, A. Jeremiah

    2009-01-01

    A water-withdrawal assessment process and Internet-based screening tool have been developed to evaluate proposed new or increased high-capacity water withdrawals in Michigan. Michigan legislation defines high capacity withdrawals as those capable of removing an average of 100,000 gallons per day for a consecutive 30-day period. This report describes the ground-water component of the screening tool, provides background information used to develop the screening tool, and documents how this component of the screening tool is implemented. The screening tool is based on application of an analytical model to estimate streamflow depletion by a proposed pumping well. The screening tool is designed to evaluate intermittent pumping, to account for the dynamics of stream-aquifer interaction, and to apportion streamflow depletion among neighboring streams. The tool is to be used for an initial screening of a proposed new or increased high-capacity withdrawal in order to identify withdrawals that may cause adverse resource impacts. The screening tool is not intended to be a site-specific design tool. Results of an example application of the screening tool in Kalamazoo County, Mich., are compared to streamflow depletion estimated by use of a regional ground-water-flow model to demonstrate its performance.

  2. Development of TUA-WELLNESS screening tool for screening risk of mild cognitive impairment among community-dwelling older adults

    PubMed Central

    Vanoh, Divya; Shahar, Suzana; Rosdinom, Razali; Din, Normah Che; Yahya, Hanis Mastura; Omar, Azahadi

    2016-01-01

    Background and aim Focus on screening for cognitive impairment has to be given particular importance because of the rising older adult population. Thus, this study aimed to develop and assess a brief screening tool consisting of ten items that can be self-administered by community dwelling older adults (TUA-WELLNESS). Methodology A total of 1,993 noninstitutionalized respondents aged 60 years and above were selected for this study. The dependent variable was mild cognitive impairment (MCI) assessed using neuropsychological test batteries. The items for the screening tool comprised a wide range of factors that were chosen mainly from the analysis of ordinal logistic regression (OLR) and based on past literature. A suitable cut-off point was developed using receiver operating characteristic analysis. Results A total of ten items were included in the screening tool. From the ten items, eight were found to be significant by ordinal logistic regression and the remaining two items were part of the tool because they showed strong association with cognitive impairment in previous studies. The area under curve (AUC), sensitivity, and specificity for cut-off 11 were 0.84%, 83.3%, and 73.4%, respectively. Conclusion TUA-WELLNESS screening tool has been used to screen for major risk factors of MCI among Malaysian older adults. This tool is only suitable for basic MCI risk screening purpose and should not be used for diagnostic purpose. PMID:27274208

  3. Development and pilot testing of a vitiligo screening tool.

    PubMed

    Sheth, Vaneeta M; Gunasekera, Nicole S; Silwal, Sujeeta; Qureshi, Abrar A

    2015-01-01

    Studies aimed at understanding the pathology, genetics, and therapeutic response of vitiligo rely on asking a single question about 'physician-diagnosed' vitiligo on surveys to identify subjects for research. However, this type of self-reporting is not sufficient. Our objective was to determine if the patient-administered Vitiligo Screening Tool (VISTO) is a sensitive and specific instrument for the detection of vitiligo in an adult population. The VISTO consists of eight closed-ended questions to assess whether the survey participant has ever been diagnosed with vitiligo by a healthcare worker and uses characteristic pictures and descriptions to inquire about the subtype and extent of any skin lesions. 159 patients at the Brigham and Women's Hospital dermatology clinic with or without a diagnosis of vitiligo were recruited. A board-certified dermatologist confirmed or excluded the diagnosis of vitiligo in each subject. 147 completed questionnaires were analyzed, 47 cases and 100 controls. The pictorial question showed 97.9% sensitivity and 98% specificity for diagnosis of vitiligo. Answering "yes" to being diagnosed with vitiligo by a dermatologist and choosing one photographic representation of vitiligo showed 95.2% sensitivity and 100% specificity for diagnosis of vitiligo. We conclude that VISTO is a highly sensitive and specific, low-burden, self-administered tool for identifying vitiligo among adult English speakers. We believe this tool will provide a simple, cost-effective way to confirm vitiligo prior to enrollment in clinical trials as well as for gathering large-scale epidemiologic data in remote populations. Future work to refine the VISTO is needed prior to use in genotype-phenotype correlation studies.

  4. 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

  5. Toward a simple risk assessment screening tool for HCV infection in Egypt.

    PubMed

    El-Ghitany, Engy M; Farghaly, Azza G; Abdel Wahab, Moataza M; Farag, Shehata; Abd El-Wahab, Ekram W

    2016-10-01

    Asymptomatic patients with HCV infection identified through screening program could benefit not only from treatment but also from other interventions such as counseling to maintain health and avoid risk behaviors. This might prevent the spread of infection and result in significant public health benefits. However, mass screening would quickly deplete resources. This work aims to develop a brief HCV risk assessment questionnaire that inquires initially about a wide range of risk factors found to be potentially associated with HCV infection in order to identify the few most significant questions that could be quickly used to facilitate cost-effective HCV case-finding in the general population in Egypt. An exhaustive literature search was done to include all reported HCV risk factors that were pooled in a 65 item questionnaire. After an initial pilot study, a case-control study was performed that included 1,024 cases and 1,046 controls. In a multivariable model, a list of independent risk factors were found to be significant predictors for being HCV seropositive among two age strata (<45 and >45 years) for each gender. A simplified model that assigned values of the odds ratio as a weight for each factor present predicted HCV infection with high diagnostic accuracy. Attaining the defined cut-off value of the total risk score enhances the effectiveness of screening. HCV risk factors in the Egyptian population vary by age and gender. An accurate prediction screening tool can be used to identify those at high risk who may benefit most from HCV serologic testing. These results are to be further validated in a large scale cross-sectional study to assess the wider use of this tool. J. Med. Virol. 88:1767-1775, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Toward a simple risk assessment screening tool for HCV infection in Egypt.

    PubMed

    El-Ghitany, Engy M; Farghaly, Azza G; Abdel Wahab, Moataza M; Farag, Shehata; Abd El-Wahab, Ekram W

    2016-10-01

    Asymptomatic patients with HCV infection identified through screening program could benefit not only from treatment but also from other interventions such as counseling to maintain health and avoid risk behaviors. This might prevent the spread of infection and result in significant public health benefits. However, mass screening would quickly deplete resources. This work aims to develop a brief HCV risk assessment questionnaire that inquires initially about a wide range of risk factors found to be potentially associated with HCV infection in order to identify the few most significant questions that could be quickly used to facilitate cost-effective HCV case-finding in the general population in Egypt. An exhaustive literature search was done to include all reported HCV risk factors that were pooled in a 65 item questionnaire. After an initial pilot study, a case-control study was performed that included 1,024 cases and 1,046 controls. In a multivariable model, a list of independent risk factors were found to be significant predictors for being HCV seropositive among two age strata (<45 and >45 years) for each gender. A simplified model that assigned values of the odds ratio as a weight for each factor present predicted HCV infection with high diagnostic accuracy. Attaining the defined cut-off value of the total risk score enhances the effectiveness of screening. HCV risk factors in the Egyptian population vary by age and gender. An accurate prediction screening tool can be used to identify those at high risk who may benefit most from HCV serologic testing. These results are to be further validated in a large scale cross-sectional study to assess the wider use of this tool. J. Med. Virol. 88:1767-1775, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26970264

  7. Validation of screening tools to assess appetite among geriatric patients.

    PubMed

    Hanisah, R; Suzana, S; Lee, F S

    2012-07-01

    Poor appetite is one of the main contributing factors of poor nutritional status among elderly individuals. Recognizing the importance of assessment of appetite, a cross sectional study was conducted to determine the validity of appetite screening tools namely, the Council on Nutrition Appetite questionnaire (CNAQ) and the simplified nutritional appetite questionnaire (SNAQ) against the appetite, hunger and sensory perception questionnaire (AHSPQ), measures of nutritional status and food intake among geriatric patients at the main general hospital in Malaysia. Nutritional status was assessed using the subjective global assessment (SGA) while food intake was measured using the dietary history questionnaire (DHQ). Anthropometric parameters included weight, height, body mass index (BMI), calf circumference (CC) and mid upper arm circumference (MUAC). A total of 145 subjects aged 60 to 86 years (68.3 ± 5.8 years) with 31.7% men and 68.3% women were recruited from outpatients (35 subjects) and inpatients (110 subjects) of Kuala Lumpur Hospital of Malaysia. As assessed by SGA, most subjects were classified as mild to moderately malnourished (50.4%), followed by normal (38.6%) and severely malnourished (11.0%). A total of 79.3% and 57.2% subjects were classified as having poor appetite according to CNAQ and SNAQ, respectively. CNAQ (80.9%) had a higher sensitivity than SNAQ (69.7%) when validated against nutritional status as assessed using SGA. However, the specificity of SNAQ (62.5%) was higher than CNAQ (23.2%). Positive predictive value for CNAQ and SNAQ were 62.6% and 74.7%, respectively. Cronbach's alpha for CNAQ and SNAQ were 0.546 and 0.578, respectively. History of weight loss over the past one year (Adjusted odds ratio 2.49) (p < 0.01) and thiamine intake less than the recommended nutrient intake (RNI) (Adjusted odds ratio 3.04) (p < 0.05) were risk factors for poor appetite among subjects. In conclusion, malnutrition and poor appetite were prevalent among the

  8. UP-TORR: online tool for accurate and Up-to-Date annotation of RNAi Reagents.

    PubMed

    Hu, Yanhui; Roesel, Charles; Flockhart, Ian; Perkins, Lizabeth; Perrimon, Norbert; Mohr, Stephanie E

    2013-09-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) is a widely adopted tool for loss-of-function studies but RNAi results only have biological relevance if the reagents are appropriately mapped to genes. Several groups have designed and generated RNAi reagent libraries for studies in cells or in vivo for Drosophila and other species. At first glance, matching RNAi reagents to genes appears to be a simple problem, as each reagent is typically designed to target a single gene. In practice, however, the reagent-gene relationship is complex. Although the sequences of oligonucleotides used to generate most types of RNAi reagents are static, the reference genome and gene annotations are regularly updated. Thus, at the time a researcher chooses an RNAi reagent or analyzes RNAi data, the most current interpretation of the RNAi reagent-gene relationship, as well as related information regarding specificity (e.g., predicted off-target effects), can be different from the original interpretation. Here, we describe a set of strategies and an accompanying online tool, UP-TORR (for Updated Targets of RNAi Reagents; www.flyrnai.org/up-torr), useful for accurate and up-to-date annotation of cell-based and in vivo RNAi reagents. Importantly, UP-TORR automatically synchronizes with gene annotations daily, retrieving the most current information available, and for Drosophila, also synchronizes with the major reagent collections. Thus, UP-TORR allows users to choose the most appropriate RNAi reagents at the onset of a study, as well as to perform the most appropriate analyses of results of RNAi-based studies.

  9. A screening tool for social anxiety disorder in primary care: data from South Africa.

    PubMed

    Sorsdahl, Katherine; Vythilingum, Bavanisha; Stein, Dan J

    2012-02-01

    There is little research from low- and middle-income countries examining the psychometric properties of a screening tool for social anxiety disorder. The sensitivity and specificity of the Social Anxiety Screening Questionnaire against the Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview as a gold standard in social phobia diagnosis were investigated using analyses of receiver operating characteristics. The "best subsets" selection procedure was conducted to determine the best three to five questions. Three questions on the screening questionnaire that best discriminate between a positive and negative diagnosis of social anxiety disorder on the MINI module were identified. Answering yes to all three of these questions gives a false-positive rate of 0.44 and a false negative rate of 0.11. For this combination, the sensitivity was 0.84, and specificity was 0.67. Additional work is needed to develop a more accurate scale that could help increase the percentage of people who receive appropriate treatment of this debilitating disorder.

  10. Evaluation of an indirect ophthalmoscopy digital photographic system as a retinopathy of prematurity screening tool

    PubMed Central

    Prakalapakorn, Sasapin G.; Freedman, Sharon F.; Wallace, David K.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose To determine whether digital retinal images obtained from an indirect ophthalmoscopy imaging system (Keeler) can be accurately graded for clinically significant retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) by masked experts. Methods The medical records of infants screened for ROP who had posterior pole images acquired using the Keeler system during routine ROP examinations were retrospectively reviewed. Two reviewers, masked to patient demographics and clinical examination findings, graded the images for (1) quality (good, fair, poor); (2) number of gradable quadrants, from 0 to 4; and (3) posterior pole disease (none, pre-plus, plus). The accuracy of grading Keeler images for clinically significant ROP (defined as pre-plus or plus disease) was compared to results of clinical examination. Results One eye each of 253 infants was included. The mean postmenstrual age at examination was 35 weeks (range, 30–42). Grader 1 found the quality of 94% of images to be fair or good; grader 2, 83% of images. Grader 1 judged 87% of images to have ≥3 gradable quadrants; grader 2, 77% of images. The sensitivity and specificity of grading pre-plus or worse disease on Keeler images were 100% and 86%, respectively, for grader 1, and 94% and 89%, respectively, for grader 2. Conclusions Digital retinal images obtained by the Keeler system can be read with high sensitivity and specificity to screen for clinically important ROP. The Keeler system may be a valuable tool for ROP screening at remote locations (ie, via telemedicine). PMID:24568980

  11. Chemical assessment state of the science: Evaluation of 32 decision-support tools used to screen and prioritize chemicals.

    PubMed

    Gauthier, Alison M; Fung, Mai; Panko, Julie; Kingsbury, Tony; Perez, Angela L; Hitchcock, Kristen; Ferracini, Tyler; Sahmel, Jennifer; Banducci, Amber; Jacobsen, Megan; Abelmann, Anders; Shay, Erin

    2015-04-01

    The last decade has seen an increased focus on evaluating the safety and sustainability of chemicals in consumer and industrial products. In order to effectively and accurately evaluate safety and sustainability, tools are needed to characterize hazard, exposure, and risk pertaining to products and processes. Because many of these tools will be used to identify problematic chemistries, and because many have potential applications in various steps of an alternatives analysis, the limitations and capabilities of available tools should be understood by users so that, ultimately, potential chemical risk is accurately reflected. In our study, we examined 32 chemical characterization tools from government, industry, academia, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The tools we studied were diverse, and varied widely in their scope and assessment. As such, they were separated into five categories for comparison: 1) Screening and Prioritization; 2) Database Utilization; 3) Hazard Assessment; 4) Exposure and Risk Assessment; and 5) Certification and Labeling. Each tool was scored based on our weighted set of criteria, and then compared to other tools in the same category. Ten tools received a high score in one or more categories; 24 tools received a medium score in one or more categories, and five tools received a low score in one or more categories. Although some tools were placed into more than one category, no tool encompassed all five of the assessment categories. Though many of the tools evaluated may be useful for providing guidance for hazards - and, in some cases, exposure - few tools characterize risk. To our knowledge, this study is the first to critically evaluate a large set of chemical assessment tools and provide an understanding of their strengths and limitations.

  12. Staff Screening Tool Kit: Keeping the Bad Apples Out of Your Organization.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Patterson, John; And Others

    During the past decade, community-serving organizations have encountered increasing pressure to implement comprehensive screening of program staff to reduce the risks inherent in working with vulnerable populations, such as young children. This screening "tool kit" suggests a process of staff screening based on the requirements of the position,…

  13. Brief Report: Screening Tool for Autism in Two-Year-Olds (STAT): Development and Preliminary Data.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stone, Wendy L.; Coonrod, Elaine E.; Ousley, Opal Y.

    2000-01-01

    A study examined the validity of the Screening Tool for Autism in Two-Year-Olds (STAT) as a stage 2 screening instrument in a clinic-based sample of two-year-olds with autism (n=12) and with nonautistic developmental disorders (n=21). Results provide preliminary support for the utility of the STAT as an early screening of autism. (Contains…

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

    PubMed

    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.

  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. Developing and Testing of an Oral Health Screening Tool for Midwives to Assess Pregnant Woman.

    PubMed

    George, Ajesh; Ajwani, Shilpi; Johnson, Maree; Dahlen, Hannah; Blinkhorn, Anthony; Bhole, Sameer; Ellis, Sharon; Zheng, Catherine; Dawes, William

    2015-01-01

    Maternal oral health is important, and midwives are encouraged to screen women for dental problems. We aimed to develop and test a midwifery oral health screening tool. A three-item tool was tested as part of a trial involving 300 women in Southwestern Sydney. A two-item combination showed better sensitivity (98%) and had a positive predictive value of 88%. Specificity was 40%, and negative predictive value was 80%. A two-item screening tool has been identified that is sensitive to identifying dental problems and facilitating referrals. Further validation using a larger sample is required to reassess the tool's specificity.

  18. Accurate mass screening of pharmaceuticals and fungicides in water by U-HPLC-Exactive Orbitrap MS.

    PubMed

    Chitescu, Carmen Lidia; Oosterink, Efraim; de Jong, Jacob; Linda Stolker, Alida Adriana Maria

    2012-07-01

    The use of pharmaceuticals in livestock production is a potential source of surface water, groundwater and soil contamination. Possible impacts of antibiotics on the environment include toxicity and the emergence of antibiotic resistance. Monitoring programs are required to record the presence of these substances in the environment. A rapid, versatile and selective multi-method was developed and validated for screening 43 pharmaceutical and fungicides compounds, in surface and groundwater, in one single full-scan MS method, using benchtop U-HPLC-Exactive Orbitrap MS at 50,000 (FWHM) resolution. Detection was based on calculated exact masses and on retention time. Sample volume, pH conditions and solid-phase extraction (SPE) sample clean-up conditions were optimized. In the final method, 74 % of the compounds had recoveries higher than 80 %, 15 % of the compounds had recoveries between 60 % and 80 %, and 7 % of the compounds had recoveries between 40 % and 50 %. One of the compounds (itraconazole) had a recovery lower than 10 % and nystatin was not detected. The level of detection was 10 ng L(-1) for 61 % of the compounds, 50 ng L(-1) for 32 % and 100 ng L(-1) for 5%. In-house validation, based on EU guidelines, proves that the detection capability CCβ is lower than 10 ng L(-1) (for β error 5 %) for 37 % of the compounds, lower than 50 ng L(-1) for 35 % of the compounds and lower than 100 ng L(-1) for 14 % of compounds. This study demonstrates that the ultra-high resolution and reliable mass accuracy of Exactive Orbitrap MS permits the detection of pharmaceutical residues in a concentration range of 10-100 ng L(-1), applying a post target screening approach, in the multi-method conditions.

  19. Retrospective screening of relevant pesticide metabolites in food using liquid chromatography high resolution mass spectrometry and accurate-mass databases of parent molecules and diagnostic fragment ions.

    PubMed

    Polgár, László; García-Reyes, Juan F; Fodor, Péter; Gyepes, Attila; Dernovics, Mihály; Abrankó, László; Gilbert-López, Bienvenida; Molina-Díaz, Antonio

    2012-08-01

    In recent years, the detection and characterization of relevant pesticide metabolites in food is an important task in order to evaluate their formation, kinetics, stability, and toxicity. In this article, a methodology for the systematic screening of pesticides and their main metabolites in fruit and vegetable samples is described, using LC-HRMS and accurate-mass database search of parent compounds and their diagnostic fragment ions. The approach is based on (i) search for parent pesticide molecules; (ii) search for their metabolites in the positive samples, assuming common fragmentation pathways between the metabolites and parent pesticide molecules; and (iii) search for pesticide conjugates using the data from both parent species and diagnostic fragment ions. An accurate-mass database was constructed consisting of 1396 compounds (850 parent compounds, 447 fragment ions and 99 metabolites). The screening process was performed by the software in an automated fashion. The proposed methodology was evaluated with 29 incurred samples and the output obtained was compared to standard pesticide testing methods (targeted LC-MS/MS). Examples on the application of the proposed approach are shown, including the detection of several pesticide glycosides derivatives, which were found with significantly relevant intensities. Glucose-conjugated forms of parent compounds (e.g., fenhexamid-O-glucoside) and those of metabolites (e.g., despropyl-iprodione-N-glycoside) were detected. Facing the lack of standards for glycosylated pesticides, the study was completed with the synthesis of fenhexamid-O-glucoside for quantification purposes. In some cases the pesticide derivatives were found in a relatively high ratio, drawing the attention to these kinds of metabolites and showing that they should not be neglected in multi-residue methods. The global coverage obtained on the 29 analyzed samples showed the usefulness and benefits of the proposed approach and highlights the practical

  20. Validated Screening Tools for Common Mental Disorders in Low and Middle Income Countries: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Grace; De Silva, Mary J.

    2016-01-01

    Background A wide range of screening tools are available to detect common mental disorders (CMDs), but few have been specifically developed for populations in low and middle income countries (LMIC). Cross-cultural application of a screening tool requires that its validity be assessed against a gold standard diagnostic interview. Validation studies of brief CMD screening tools have been conducted in several LMIC, but until now there has been no review of screening tools for all CMDs across all LMIC populations. Methods A systematic review with broad inclusion criteria was conducted, producing a comprehensive summary of brief CMD screening tools validated for use in LMIC populations. For each validation, the diagnostic odds ratio (DOR) was calculated as an easily comparable measure of screening tool validity. Average DOR results weighted by sample size were calculated for each screening tool, enabling us to make broad recommendations about best performing screening tools. Results 153 studies fulfilled our inclusion criteria. Because many studies validated two or more screening tools, this corresponded to 273 separate validations against gold standard diagnostic criteria. We found that the validity of every screening tool tested in multiple settings and populations varied between studies, highlighting the importance of local validation. Many of the best performing tools were purposely developed for a specific population; however, as these tools have only been validated in one study, it is not possible to draw broader conclusions about their applicability in other contexts. Conclusions Of the tools that have been validated in multiple settings, the authors broadly recommend using the SRQ-20 to screen for general CMDs, the GHQ-12 for CMDs in populations with physical illness, the HADS-D for depressive disorders, the PHQ-9 for depressive disorders in populations with good literacy levels, the EPDS for perinatal depressive disorders, and the HADS-A for anxiety disorders

  1. Intracellular calcium levels as screening tool for nanoparticle toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Meindl, Claudia; Kueznik, Tatjana; Bösch, Martina; Roblegg, Eva; Fröhlich, Eleonore

    2015-01-01

    disruption, apoptosis, lysosome function, intracellular [Ca2+] levels and generation of oxidative stress. Small polystyrene particles and silica particles caused membrane damage and apoptosis with no preference of the surface charge. Increases in intracellular [Ca2+] levels could be used as a screening tool for cytotoxicity. PMID:25976553

  2. Highly sensitive and accurate screening of 40 dyes in soft drinks by liquid chromatography-electrospray tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Feng, Feng; Zhao, Yansheng; Yong, Wei; Sun, Li; Jiang, Guibin; Chu, Xiaogang

    2011-06-15

    A method combining solid phase extraction with high performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry was developed for the highly sensitive and accurate screening of 40 dyes, most of which are banned in foods. Electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry was used to identify and quantify a large number of dyes for the first time, and demonstrated greater accuracy and sensitivity than the conventional liquid chromatography-ultraviolet/visible methods. The limits of detection at a signal-to-noise ratio of 3 for the dyes are 0.0001-0.01 mg/L except for Tartrazine, Amaranth, New Red and Ponceau 4R, with detection limits of 0.5, 0.25, 0.125 and 0.125 mg/L, respectively. When this method was applied to screening of dyes in soft drinks, the recoveries ranged from 91.1 to 105%. This method has been successfully applied to screening of illegal dyes in commercial soft drink samples, and it is valuable to ensure the safety of food.

  3. An Optimized Fluorescence-Based Bidimensional Immunoproteomic Approach for Accurate Screening of Autoantibodies

    PubMed Central

    Launay, David; Sobanski, Vincent; Dussart, Patricia; Chafey, Philippe; Broussard, Cédric; Duban-Deweer, Sophie; Vermersch, Patrick; Prin, Lionel; Lefranc, Didier

    2015-01-01

    Serological proteome analysis (SERPA) combines classical proteomic technology with effective separation of cellular protein extracts on two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, western blotting, and identification of the antigenic spot of interest by mass spectrometry. A critical point is related to the antigenic target characterization by mass spectrometry, which depends on the accuracy of the matching of antigenic reactivities on the protein spots during the 2D immunoproteomic procedures. The superimposition, based essentially on visual criteria of antigenic and protein spots, remains the major limitation of SERPA. The introduction of fluorescent dyes in proteomic strategies, commonly known as 2D-DIGE (differential in-gel electrophoresis), has boosted the qualitative capabilities of 2D electrophoresis. Based on this 2D-DIGE strategy, we have improved the conventional SERPA by developing a new and entirely fluorescence-based bi-dimensional immunoproteomic (FBIP) analysis, performed with three fluorescent dyes. To optimize the alignment of the different antigenic maps, we introduced a landmark map composed of a combination of specific antibodies. This methodological development allows simultaneous revelation of the antigenic, landmark and proteomic maps on each immunoblot. A computer-assisted process using commercially available software automatically leads to the superimposition of the different maps, ensuring accurate localization of antigenic spots of interest. PMID:26132557

  4. 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.

  5. Disposable Screen Printed Electrochemical Sensors: Tools for Environmental Monitoring

    PubMed Central

    Hayat, Akhtar; Marty, Jean Louis

    2014-01-01

    Screen printing technology is a widely used technique for the fabrication of electrochemical sensors. This methodology is likely to underpin the progressive drive towards miniaturized, sensitive and portable devices, and has already established its route from “lab-to-market” for a plethora of sensors. The application of these sensors for analysis of environmental samples has been the major focus of research in this field. As a consequence, this work will focus on recent important advances in the design and fabrication of disposable screen printed sensors for the electrochemical detection of environmental contaminants. Special emphasis is given on sensor fabrication methodology, operating details and performance characteristics for environmental applications. PMID:24932865

  6. 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

  7. Fatty acid composition as a tool for screening alternative feedstocks for production of biodiesel

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fatty acid (FA) composition was used as a screening tool for the selection of feedstocks high in monounsaturated content for evaluation as biodiesel. The feedstocks were ailanthus (Ailanthus altissima), anise (Pimpinella anisum), arugula (Eruca vesicaria), camelina (Camelina sativa), coriander (Cori...

  8. AOD Screening Tools for College Students. Prevention Update

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Higher Education Center for Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Violence Prevention, 2012

    2012-01-01

    According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), the goal of screening in student health or other college settings is to reduce alcohol-related harm. NIAAA points out that identifying those students at greatest risk for alcohol problems is the first step in prevention. Colleges and universities have used a number of…

  9. A Review of Cultural Adaptations of Screening Tools for Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soto, Sandra; Linas, Keri; Jacobstein, Diane; Biel, Matthew; Migdal, Talia; Anthony, Bruno J.

    2015-01-01

    Screening children to determine risk for Autism Spectrum Disorders has become more common, although some question the advisability of such a strategy. The purpose of this systematic review is to identify autism screening tools that have been adapted for use in cultures different from that in which they were developed, evaluate the cultural…

  10. Developing the Thai Siriraj Psoriatic Arthritis Screening Tool and validating the Thai Psoriasis Epidemiology Screening Tool and the Early Arthritis for Psoriatic Patients questionnaire.

    PubMed

    Chiowchanwisawakit, Praveena; Wattanamongkolsil, Luksame; Srinonprasert, Varalak; Petcharat, Chonachan; Siriwanarangsun, Palanan; Katchamart, Wanruchada

    2016-10-01

    To validate the Thai language version of the Psoriasis Epidemiology Screening Tool (PEST) and the Early Arthritis for Psoriatic Patients Questionnaire (EARP), as well as also to develop a new tool for screening psoriatic arthritis (PsA) among psoriasis (Ps) patients. This was a cross-sectional study. Ps patients visiting the psoriasis clinic at Siriraj Hospital were recruited. They completed the EARP and PEST. Full musculoskeletal history, examination, and radiography were evaluated. PsA was diagnosed by a rheumatologist's evaluation and fulfillment of the classification criteria for psoriatic arthritis. Receiver operator characteristic (ROC) curves, sensitivity, and specificity were used to evaluate the performances of the tools. The Siriraj Psoriatic Arthritis Screening Tool (SiPAT) contained questions most relevant to peripheral arthritis, axial inflammation, and enthesitis, selected from multivariate analysis. Of a total of 159 patients, the prevalence of PsA was 78.6 %. The ROC curve analyses of Thai EARP, PEST, and SiPAT were 0.90 (95 % CI 0.84, 0.96), 0.85 (0.78, 0.92), and 0.89 (0.83, 0.95), respectively. The sensitivities of SiPAT, Thai EARP, and PEST were 91.0, 83.0, and 72.0 %, respectively, while the specificities were 69.0, 79.3, and 89.7 %, respectively. All screening questionnaires showed good diagnostic performances. SiPAT could be considered as a screening tool with its desirable properties: higher sensitivity and taking less time. Thai PEST and EARP could possibly be sequentially administered for people with a positive test from SiPAT to reduce the number of false positives. PMID:27333800

  11. Further validation of the self-loathing subscale as a screening tool for eating disorders.

    PubMed

    Aruguete, Mara S; Yates, Alayne; Edman, Jeanne L

    2007-01-01

    This study examines the reliability and validity of the Self Loathing Subscale (SLSS) of the Exercise Orientation Questionnaire (EOQ) as a screening tool for possible eating disorders. We administered the SLSS and two other eating disorder screening instruments to 160 college students. Results indicate that the SLSS shows high internal consistency, concurrent validity, and convergent validity. Since the SLSS is based on questions about exercise and is not easily identifiable as a screening tool for eating disorders, the scale may be particularly useful in identifying possible pathology among individuals who may try to suppress or deny obvious symptoms of eating disorders.

  12. Evaluation of an Automated Information Extraction Tool for Imaging Data Elements to Populate a Breast Cancer Screening Registry.

    PubMed

    Lacson, Ronilda; Harris, Kimberly; Brawarsky, Phyllis; Tosteson, Tor D; Onega, Tracy; Tosteson, Anna N A; Kaye, Abby; Gonzalez, Irina; Birdwell, Robyn; Haas, Jennifer S

    2015-10-01

    Breast cancer screening is central to early breast cancer detection. Identifying and monitoring process measures for screening is a focus of the National Cancer Institute's Population-based Research Optimizing Screening through Personalized Regimens (PROSPR) initiative, which requires participating centers to report structured data across the cancer screening continuum. We evaluate the accuracy of automated information extraction of imaging findings from radiology reports, which are available as unstructured text. We present prevalence estimates of imaging findings for breast imaging received by women who obtained care in a primary care network participating in PROSPR (n = 139,953 radiology reports) and compared automatically extracted data elements to a "gold standard" based on manual review for a validation sample of 941 randomly selected radiology reports, including mammograms, digital breast tomosynthesis, ultrasound, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The prevalence of imaging findings vary by data element and modality (e.g., suspicious calcification noted in 2.6% of screening mammograms, 12.1% of diagnostic mammograms, and 9.4% of tomosynthesis exams). In the validation sample, the accuracy of identifying imaging findings, including suspicious calcifications, masses, and architectural distortion (on mammogram and tomosynthesis); masses, cysts, non-mass enhancement, and enhancing foci (on MRI); and masses and cysts (on ultrasound), range from 0.8 to1.0 for recall, precision, and F-measure. Information extraction tools can be used for accurate documentation of imaging findings as structured data elements from text reports for a variety of breast imaging modalities. These data can be used to populate screening registries to help elucidate more effective breast cancer screening processes. PMID:25561069

  13. Evaluation of an Automated Information Extraction Tool for Imaging Data Elements to Populate a Breast Cancer Screening Registry.

    PubMed

    Lacson, Ronilda; Harris, Kimberly; Brawarsky, Phyllis; Tosteson, Tor D; Onega, Tracy; Tosteson, Anna N A; Kaye, Abby; Gonzalez, Irina; Birdwell, Robyn; Haas, Jennifer S

    2015-10-01

    Breast cancer screening is central to early breast cancer detection. Identifying and monitoring process measures for screening is a focus of the National Cancer Institute's Population-based Research Optimizing Screening through Personalized Regimens (PROSPR) initiative, which requires participating centers to report structured data across the cancer screening continuum. We evaluate the accuracy of automated information extraction of imaging findings from radiology reports, which are available as unstructured text. We present prevalence estimates of imaging findings for breast imaging received by women who obtained care in a primary care network participating in PROSPR (n = 139,953 radiology reports) and compared automatically extracted data elements to a "gold standard" based on manual review for a validation sample of 941 randomly selected radiology reports, including mammograms, digital breast tomosynthesis, ultrasound, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The prevalence of imaging findings vary by data element and modality (e.g., suspicious calcification noted in 2.6% of screening mammograms, 12.1% of diagnostic mammograms, and 9.4% of tomosynthesis exams). In the validation sample, the accuracy of identifying imaging findings, including suspicious calcifications, masses, and architectural distortion (on mammogram and tomosynthesis); masses, cysts, non-mass enhancement, and enhancing foci (on MRI); and masses and cysts (on ultrasound), range from 0.8 to1.0 for recall, precision, and F-measure. Information extraction tools can be used for accurate documentation of imaging findings as structured data elements from text reports for a variety of breast imaging modalities. These data can be used to populate screening registries to help elucidate more effective breast cancer screening processes.

  14. Identifying Preschool Children At-Risk of Later Reading Difficulties: Evaluation of two Emergent Literacy Screening Tools

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Shauna B.; Lonigan, Christopher J.

    2012-01-01

    Emergent literacy skills are predictive of children’s early reading success, and literacy achievement in early schooling declines more rapidly for children who are below-average readers. It is therefore important for teachers to identify accurately children at risk for later reading difficulty so children can be exposed to good emergent literacy interventions. In this study, 176 preschoolers were administered two screening tools, the Revised Get Ready to Read! (GRTR-R) and the Individual Growth and Development Indicators (IGDIs), and a diagnostic measure at two time points. Receiver operating characteristic curve analyses revealed that at optimal cut scores, GRTR-R provided more accurate classification of children’s overall emergent literacy skills than did IGDIs. However, neither measure was particularly good at classifying specific emergent literacy skills. PMID:19822699

  15. Optimization of Electrically Active Magnetic Nanoparticles as Accurate and Efficient Microbial Extraction Tools

    PubMed Central

    Cloutier, Barbara C.; Cloutier, Ashley K.; Alocilja, Evangelyn C.

    2015-01-01

    Food defense requires the means to efficiently screen large volumes of food for microbial pathogens. Even rapid detection methods often require lengthy enrichment steps, making them impractical for this application. There is a great need for rapid, sensitive, specific, and inexpensive methods for extracting and concentrating microbial pathogens from food. In this study, an immuno-magnetic separation (IMS) methodology was developed for Escherichia coli O157:H7, using electrically active magnetic nanoparticles (EAMNPs). The analytical specificity of the IMS method was evaluated against Escherichia coli O55:H7 and Shigella boydii, and was improved over previous protocols by the addition of sodium chloride during the conjugation of antibodies onto MNPs. The analytical sensitivity of the IMS method was greatest when a high concentration of antibodies (1.0 mg/mL) was present during conjugation. EAMNP concentrations of 1.0 and 0.5 mg/mL provided optimal analytical sensitivity and analytical specificity. The entire IMS procedure requires only 35 min, and antibody-conjugated MNPs show no decline in performance up to 149 days after conjugation. This analytically sensitive and specific extraction protocol has excellent longevity and shows promise as an effective extraction for multiple electrochemical biosensor applications. PMID:25664527

  16. Optimizing odor identification testing as quick and accurate diagnostic tool for Parkinson's disease

    PubMed Central

    Mahlknecht, Philipp; Pechlaner, Raimund; Boesveldt, Sanne; Volc, Dieter; Pinter, Bernardette; Reiter, Eva; Müller, Christoph; Krismer, Florian; Berendse, Henk W.; van Hilten, Jacobus J.; Wuschitz, Albert; Schimetta, Wolfgang; Högl, Birgit; Djamshidian, Atbin; Nocker, Michael; Göbel, Georg; Gasperi, Arno; Kiechl, Stefan; Willeit, Johann; Poewe, Werner

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Introduction The aim of this study was to evaluate odor identification testing as a quick, cheap, and reliable tool to identify PD. Methods Odor identification with the 16‐item Sniffin' Sticks test (SS‐16) was assessed in a total of 646 PD patients and 606 controls from three European centers (A, B, and C), as well as 75 patients with atypical parkinsonism or essential tremor and in a prospective cohort of 24 patients with idiopathic rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (center A). Reduced odor sets most discriminative for PD were determined in a discovery cohort derived from a random split of PD patients and controls from center A using L1‐regularized logistic regression. Diagnostic accuracy was assessed in the rest of the patients/controls as validation cohorts. Results Olfactory performance was lower in PD patients compared with controls and non‐PD patients in all cohorts (each P < 0.001). Both the full SS‐16 and a subscore of the top eight discriminating odors (SS‐8) were associated with an excellent discrimination of PD from controls (areas under the curve ≥0.90; sensitivities ≥83.3%; specificities ≥82.0%) and from non‐PD patients (areas under the curve ≥0.91; sensitivities ≥84.1%; specificities ≥84.0%) in all cohorts. This remained unchanged when patients with >3 years of disease duration were excluded from analysis. All 8 incident PD cases among patients with idiopathic rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder were predicted with the SS‐16 and the SS‐8 (sensitivity, 100%; positive predictive value, 61.5%). Conclusions Odor identification testing provides excellent diagnostic accuracy in the distinction of PD patients from controls and diagnostic mimics. A reduced set of eight odors could be used as a quick tool in the workup of patients presenting with parkinsonism and for PD risk indication. © 2016 The Authors. Movement Disorders published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Parkinson and

  17. Streptomyces: a screening tool for bacterial cell division inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Jani, Charul; Tocheva, Elitza I; McAuley, Scott; Craney, Arryn; Jensen, Grant J; Nodwell, Justin

    2015-02-01

    Cell division is essential for spore formation but not for viability in the filamentous streptomycetes bacteria. Failure to complete cell division instead blocks spore formation, a phenotype that can be visualized by the absence of gray (in Streptomyces coelicolor) and green (in Streptomyces venezuelae) spore-associated pigmentation. Despite the lack of essentiality, the streptomycetes divisome is similar to that of other prokaryotes. Therefore, the chemical inhibitors of sporulation in model streptomycetes may interfere with the cell division in rod-shaped bacteria as well. To test this, we investigated 196 compounds that inhibit sporulation in S. coelicolor. We show that 19 of these compounds cause filamentous growth in Bacillus subtilis, consistent with impaired cell division. One of the compounds is a DNA-damaging agent and inhibits cell division by activating the SOS response. The remaining 18 act independently of known stress responses and may therefore act on the divisome or on divisome positioning and stability. Three of the compounds (Fil-1, Fil-2, and Fil-3) confer distinct cell division defects on B. subtilis. They also block B. subtilis sporulation, which is mechanistically unrelated to the sporulation pathway of streptomycetes but is also dependent on the divisome. We discuss ways in which these differing phenotypes can be used in screens for cell division inhibitors.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Italian normative data for a stroke specific cognitive screening tool: the Oxford Cognitive Screen (OCS).

    PubMed

    Mancuso, M; Varalta, V; Sardella, L; Capitani, D; Zoccolotti, P; Antonucci, G

    2016-10-01

    Cognitive deficits occur in most stroke patients and cognitive impairment is an important predictor of adverse long term outcome. However, current screening measures, such as the Mini Mental State Examination or the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, do not provide information tuned for evaluating the impact of cognitive impairment in the early phase after stroke. The Oxford Cognitive Screen (OCS) represents an important new development in this regard. The OCS is now available for assessment of Italian individuals and the aim of this study is to standardize the OCS on a large sample of healthy Italian participants stratified for age, gender and education level. Results confirmed the influence of these factors in several of the OCS tasks. Age-, education- and gender-adjusted norms are provided for the ten sub-tests of the test. The availability of normative data represents an important prerequite for the reliable use of OCS with stroke patients. PMID:27395388

  1. Italian normative data for a stroke specific cognitive screening tool: the Oxford Cognitive Screen (OCS).

    PubMed

    Mancuso, M; Varalta, V; Sardella, L; Capitani, D; Zoccolotti, P; Antonucci, G

    2016-10-01

    Cognitive deficits occur in most stroke patients and cognitive impairment is an important predictor of adverse long term outcome. However, current screening measures, such as the Mini Mental State Examination or the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, do not provide information tuned for evaluating the impact of cognitive impairment in the early phase after stroke. The Oxford Cognitive Screen (OCS) represents an important new development in this regard. The OCS is now available for assessment of Italian individuals and the aim of this study is to standardize the OCS on a large sample of healthy Italian participants stratified for age, gender and education level. Results confirmed the influence of these factors in several of the OCS tasks. Age-, education- and gender-adjusted norms are provided for the ten sub-tests of the test. The availability of normative data represents an important prerequite for the reliable use of OCS with stroke patients.

  2. Pichia surface display: a tool for screening single domain antibodies.

    PubMed

    De Schutter, Kristof; Callewaert, Nico

    2012-01-01

    Yeast surface display is being employed as an efficient tool for the isolation and engineering of traditional antibody fragments, both scFv and Fab, as well as single domain antibodies. Here we describe the protocols for a yeast surface display system developed in the methylothrophic yeast Pichia pastoris, the most commonly used yeast species for protein production. In this system the immune or maturated library of single domain antibodies is fused to the C-terminal domain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae alpha-agglutinin gene (SAG1) and expressed on the surface of P. pastoris cells. Labeling with ligands enables rapid and quantitative analysis in conjunction with isolation of single domain antibodies with the desired characteristics.

  3. Rapid Screening of Bovine Milk Oligosaccharides in a Whey Permeate Product and Domestic Animal Milks by Accurate Mass Database and Tandem Mass Spectral Library.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyeyoung; Cuthbertson, Daniel J; Otter, Don E; Barile, Daniela

    2016-08-17

    A bovine milk oligosaccharide (BMO) library, prepared from cow colostrum, with 34 structures was generated and used to rapidly screen oligosaccharides in domestic animal milks and a whey permeate powder. The novel library was entered into a custom Personal Compound Database and Library (PCDL) and included accurate mass, retention time, and tandem mass spectra. Oligosaccharides in minute-sized samples were separated using nanoliquid chromatography (nanoLC) coupled to a high resolution and sensitive quadrupole-Time of Flight (Q-ToF) MS system. Using the PCDL, 18 oligosaccharides were found in a BMO-enriched product obtained from whey permeate processing. The usefulness of the analytical system and BMO library was further validated using milks from domestic sheep and buffaloes. Through BMO PCDL searching, 15 and 13 oligosaccharides in the BMO library were assigned in sheep and buffalo milks, respectively, thus demonstrating significant overlap between oligosaccharides in bovine (cow and buffalo) and ovine (sheep) milks. This method was shown to be an efficient, reliable, and rapid tool to identify oligosaccharide structures using automated spectral matching. PMID:27428379

  4. Rapid Screening of Bovine Milk Oligosaccharides in a Whey Permeate Product and Domestic Animal Milks by Accurate Mass Database and Tandem Mass Spectral Library.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyeyoung; Cuthbertson, Daniel J; Otter, Don E; Barile, Daniela

    2016-08-17

    A bovine milk oligosaccharide (BMO) library, prepared from cow colostrum, with 34 structures was generated and used to rapidly screen oligosaccharides in domestic animal milks and a whey permeate powder. The novel library was entered into a custom Personal Compound Database and Library (PCDL) and included accurate mass, retention time, and tandem mass spectra. Oligosaccharides in minute-sized samples were separated using nanoliquid chromatography (nanoLC) coupled to a high resolution and sensitive quadrupole-Time of Flight (Q-ToF) MS system. Using the PCDL, 18 oligosaccharides were found in a BMO-enriched product obtained from whey permeate processing. The usefulness of the analytical system and BMO library was further validated using milks from domestic sheep and buffaloes. Through BMO PCDL searching, 15 and 13 oligosaccharides in the BMO library were assigned in sheep and buffalo milks, respectively, thus demonstrating significant overlap between oligosaccharides in bovine (cow and buffalo) and ovine (sheep) milks. This method was shown to be an efficient, reliable, and rapid tool to identify oligosaccharide structures using automated spectral matching.

  5. A web-based tool for rational screening of mutants libraries using ProSAR.

    PubMed

    Berland, Magali; Offmann, Bernard; André, Isabelle; Remaud-Siméon, Magali; Charton, Philippe

    2014-10-01

    In directed evolution experiments, it is at stake to have methods to screen efficiently the mutant libraries. We propose a web-based tool that implements an established in silico method for the rational screening of mutant libraries. The method, known as ProSAR, attempts to link sequence data to activity. The method uses statistical models trained on small experimental datasets provided by the user. These can integrate potential epistatic interactions between mutations and be used in many diverse biological contexts. It drastically improves the search for leading mutants. The tool is freely available to non-commercial users at http://bo-protscience.fr/prosar/.

  6. OPTIMAL WELL LOCATOR (OWL): A SCREENING TOOL FOR EVALUATING LOCATIONS OF MONITORING WELLS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Optimal Well Locator ( OWL) program was designed and developed by USEPA to be a screening tool to evaluate and optimize the placement of wells in long term monitoring networks at small sites. The first objective of the OWL program is to allow the user to visualize the change ...

  7. Preliminary Validation of a Screening Tool for Adolescent Panic Disorder in Pediatric Primary Care Clinics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Queen, Alexander H.; Ehrenreich-May, Jill; Hershorin, Eugene R.

    2012-01-01

    This study examines the validity of a brief screening tool for adolescent panic disorder (PD) in a primary care setting. A total of 165 participants (ages 12-17 years) seen in two pediatric primary care clinics completed the Autonomic Nervous System Questionnaire (ANS; Stein et al. in Psychosomatic Med 61:359-364, 40). A subset of those screening…

  8. The Sensitivity and Specificity of Depression Screening Tools among Adults with Intellectual Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ailey, Sarah H.

    2009-01-01

    This study describes the validity and the sensitivity and specificity of depression screening tools among adults with intellectual and disabilities (ID). Subjects (N = 75) were interviewed with the Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II) and the Glasgow Depression Scale for People with a Learning Disability (GDS-LD) and also completed a clinical…

  9. Comparing Two CBM Maze Selection Tools: Considering Scoring and Interpretive Metrics for Universal Screening

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ford, Jeremy W.; Missall, Kristen N.; Hosp, John L.; Kuhle, Jennifer L.

    2016-01-01

    Advances in maze selection curriculum-based measurement have led to several published tools with technical information for interpretation (e.g., norms, benchmarks, cut-scores, classification accuracy) that have increased their usefulness for universal screening. A range of scoring practices have emerged for evaluating student performance on maze…

  10. Eating Disorders in Graduate Students: Exploring the SCOFF Questionnaire as a Simple Screening Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Parker, Sarah C.; Lyons, John; Bonner, Julia

    2005-01-01

    The results of several studies have established the validity of the SCOFF questionnaire (a 5-question screening tool for eating disorders), but researchers need to explore further replicability using the US version in the graduate school population. In this study, the authors asked 335 graduate students attending the Northwestern student health…

  11. PLASMA PROTEIN PROFILING AS A HIGH THROUGHPUT TOOL FOR CHEMICAL SCREENING USING A SMALL FISH MODEL

    EPA Science Inventory

    Hudson, R. Tod, Michael J. Hemmer, Kimberly A. Salinas, Sherry S. Wilkinson, James Watts, James T. Winstead, Peggy S. Harris, Amy Kirkpatrick and Calvin C. Walker. In press. Plasma Protein Profiling as a High Throughput Tool for Chemical Screening Using a Small Fish Model (Abstra...

  12. Using SWPBS Expectations as a Screening Tool to Predict Behavioral Risk in Middle School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burke, Mack D.; Davis, John L.; Hagan-Burke, Shanna; Lee, Yuan-Hsuan; Fogarty, Melissa Shea

    2014-01-01

    School-wide positive behavior support (SWPBS) focuses on promoting social competence through the establishment of behavior expectations that are explicitly taught and reinforced by all teachers across all settings. This study investigated the validity of using adherence to SWPBS behavior expectations as a screening tool for predicting behavior…

  13. Further Investigation of Findings Reported for the Minnesota Sex Offender Screening Tool--Revised

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Langton, Calvin M.; Barbaree, Howard E.; Harkins, Leigh; Peacock, Edward J.; Arenovich, Tamara

    2008-01-01

    Among a number of widely used risk assessment instruments with adult sexual offenders, the Minnesota Sex Offender Screening Tool-Revised (MnSOST-R) has been subject to relatively few evaluation studies. Only two independent research groups have published replication studies in the peer-reviewed literature with data not provided by the MnSOST-R's…

  14. Hearing and vision screening tools for long-term care residents with dementia: protocol for a scoping review

    PubMed Central

    McGilton, Katherine S; Höbler, Fiona; Campos, Jennifer; Dupuis, Kate; Labreche, Tammy; Guthrie, Dawn M; Jarry, Jonathan; Singh, Gurjit; Wittich, Walter

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Hearing and vision loss among long-term care (LTC) residents with dementia frequently goes unnoticed and untreated. Despite negative consequences for these residents, there is little information available about their sensory abilities and care assessments and practices seldom take these abilities or accessibility needs into account. Without adequate knowledge regarding such sensory loss, it is difficult for LTC staff to determine the level of an individual's residual basic competence for communication and independent functioning. We will conduct a scoping review to identify the screening measures used in research and clinical contexts that test hearing and vision in adults aged over 65 years with dementia, aiming to: (1) provide an overview of hearing and vision screening in older adults with dementia; and (2) evaluate the sensibility of the screening tools. Methods and analysis This scoping review will be conducted using the framework by Arksey and O'Malley and furthered by methodological enhancements from cited researchers. We will conduct electronic database searches in CENTRAL, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE and PsycINFO. We will also carry out a ‘grey literature’ search for studies or materials not formally published, both online and through interview discussions with healthcare professionals and research clinicians working in the field. Our aim is to find new and existing hearing and vision screening measures used in research and by clinical professionals of optometry and audiology. Abstracts will be independently reviewed twice for acceptance by a multidisciplinary team of researchers and research clinicians. Ethics and dissemination This review will inform health professionals working with this growing population. With the review findings, we aim to develop a toolkit and an algorithmic process to select the most appropriate hearing and vision screening assessments for LTC residents with dementia that will facilitate accurate testing and can

  15. Tzanck smear as an accurate and rapid diagnostic tool for cutaneous alternariosis in a renal transplant recipient.

    PubMed

    Karataş Toğral, A; Güleç, A T

    2016-10-01

    Alternaria species are becoming increasingly important opportunistic pathogens in recipients of solid organ transplant, as it has been shown that dissemination with systemic involvement is not as rare as previously reported. Therefore, rapid and accurate diagnosis is necessary for appropriate patient management. We report a patient with renal transplant who developed recurrent cutaneous alternariosis. Tzanck smear successfully and very rapidly revealed hyphae and spores in both the primary and subsequent lesions. Furthermore, Tzanck smear provided guidance for histopathological examination of the second lesion, which failed to disclose the fungal elements until additional deeper serial sections were performed. The present case emphasizes that the Tzanck smear is a useful clinical tool leading to the immediate correct diagnosis even in deep fungal infections. PMID:27663148

  16. The m/r SEBT: development of a functional screening tool for dance educators.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Margaret; Batson, Glenna

    2014-12-01

    Dance screenings provide direct and indirect data bearing on a dancer's readiness to undertake rigorous physical training. Rarely, however, are dance teachers able to translate results from these screenings into practical technical knowledge. In this article, an example of a preseason assessment tool is presented that translates scientific findings into useful information for dance teachers conducting auditions. Designed as a baseline assessment of the dancer during auditioning, the m/r SEBT tool helps teachers stratify technical levels, identify injury risk, and consequently assist with immediate and appropriate recommendations for supplemental training and//or follow-up with a medical professional. The tool evolved out of more than 3 years of collaborative, multisite research utilizing the Star Excursion Balance Test (SEBT) as a dynamic test of balance. Modifications were made to render the test more dance-specific and to increase balance challenges. Within the 3-year period, more than 100 dancers were tested in four sites, two in the United States and two in the United Kingdom. Despite the relatively large collective sample size, neither the original SEBT nor its modifications (m/r SEBT) held robust face or content validity as balance screens. What did emerge, however, were qualitative criteria that the authors organized into a feasible assessment tool for preseason auditions. While this tool awaits further validation, its current evolution helps serve as a bridge between dance teachers' clinical and practical knowledge. PMID:25433257

  17. The m/r SEBT: development of a functional screening tool for dance educators.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Margaret; Batson, Glenna

    2014-12-01

    Dance screenings provide direct and indirect data bearing on a dancer's readiness to undertake rigorous physical training. Rarely, however, are dance teachers able to translate results from these screenings into practical technical knowledge. In this article, an example of a preseason assessment tool is presented that translates scientific findings into useful information for dance teachers conducting auditions. Designed as a baseline assessment of the dancer during auditioning, the m/r SEBT tool helps teachers stratify technical levels, identify injury risk, and consequently assist with immediate and appropriate recommendations for supplemental training and//or follow-up with a medical professional. The tool evolved out of more than 3 years of collaborative, multisite research utilizing the Star Excursion Balance Test (SEBT) as a dynamic test of balance. Modifications were made to render the test more dance-specific and to increase balance challenges. Within the 3-year period, more than 100 dancers were tested in four sites, two in the United States and two in the United Kingdom. Despite the relatively large collective sample size, neither the original SEBT nor its modifications (m/r SEBT) held robust face or content validity as balance screens. What did emerge, however, were qualitative criteria that the authors organized into a feasible assessment tool for preseason auditions. While this tool awaits further validation, its current evolution helps serve as a bridge between dance teachers' clinical and practical knowledge.

  18. Development of a high-throughput thermoelectric screening tool for combinatorial thin film libraries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otani, M.; Itaka, K.; Wong-Ng, W.; Schenck, P. K.; Koinuma, H.

    2007-11-01

    We have developed a high-throughput thermoelectric screening tool for the study of combinatorial thin films. This tool consists of a probe to measure resistance and Seebeck coefficient on an automated translation stage. A thin film library of the (Ca 1- x- ySr xLa y) 3Co 4O 9 ternary system has been fabricated on a Si (1 0 0) substrate, using combinatorial pulsed laser deposition by the natural-composition-spread method. We have demonstrated successful mapping of the resistance and Seebeck coefficient of this film library. The mapping indicates that the substitution of La for Ca results in an increase of both resistance and Seebeck coefficient, and that of Sr results in a decrease of resistance. The screening tool allows us to measure 1080 data points in 6 h.

  19. Mineotaur: a tool for high-content microscopy screen sharing and visual analytics.

    PubMed

    Antal, Bálint; Chessel, Anatole; Carazo Salas, Rafael E

    2015-01-01

    High-throughput/high-content microscopy-based screens are powerful tools for functional genomics, yielding intracellular information down to the level of single-cells for thousands of genotypic conditions. However, accessing their data requires specialized knowledge and most often that data is no longer analyzed after initial publication. We describe Mineotaur ( http://www.mineotaur.org ), a open-source, downloadable web application that allows easy online sharing and interactive visualisation of large screen datasets, facilitating their dissemination and further analysis, and enhancing their impact.

  20. Generation of orientation tools for automated zebrafish screening assays using desktop 3D printing

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The zebrafish has been established as the main vertebrate model system for whole organism screening applications. However, the lack of consistent positioning of zebrafish embryos within wells of microtiter plates remains an obstacle for the comparative analysis of images acquired in automated screening assays. While technical solutions to the orientation problem exist, dissemination is often hindered by the lack of simple and inexpensive ways of distributing and duplicating tools. Results Here, we provide a cost effective method for the production of 96-well plate compatible zebrafish orientation tools using a desktop 3D printer. The printed tools enable the positioning and orientation of zebrafish embryos within cavities formed in agarose. Their applicability is demonstrated by acquiring lateral and dorsal views of zebrafish embryos arrayed within microtiter plates using an automated screening microscope. This enables the consistent visualization of morphological phenotypes and reporter gene expression patterns. Conclusions The designs are refined versions of previously demonstrated devices with added functionality and strongly reduced production costs. All corresponding 3D models are freely available and digital design can be easily shared electronically. In combination with the increasingly widespread usage of 3D printers, this provides access to the developed tools to a wide range of zebrafish users. Finally, the design files can serve as templates for other additive and subtractive fabrication methods. PMID:24886511

  1. 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

  2. Development and application of screening tools for biodegradation in water-sediment systems and soil.

    PubMed

    Junker, Thomas; Coors, Anja; Schüürmann, Gerrit

    2016-02-15

    Two new screening-test systems for biodegradation in water-sediment systems (WSST; Water-Sediment Screening Tool) and soil (SST; Soil Screening Tool) were developed in analogy with the water-only test system OECD 301C (MITI-test). The test systems could be applied successfully to determine reproducible experimental mineralization rates and kinetics on the screening-test level for fifteen organic chemicals in water (MITI), water-sediment (WSST) and soil (SST). Substance-specific differences were observed for mineralization compared among the three test systems. Based on mineralization rate and mineralization half-life, the fifteen compounds could be grouped into four biodegradation categories: substances with high mineralization and a half-life <28 days in (1) all three test systems, (2) only in the MITI test and in the WSST, (3) only in the SST, and (4) none of the test systems. The observed differences between the MITI results and the WSST and SST biodegradation rates of the compounds do not reflect their (reversible) sorption into organic matter in terms of experimental K(oc) values and log D values for the relevant pH range. Regarding mineralization kinetics we recommend to determine the lag-phase, mineralization half-life and mineralization rate using a 5-parameter logistic regression for degradation curves with and without lag-phase. Experimental data obtained with the WSST and the SST could be verified by showing good agreement with biodegradation data from databases and literature for the majority of compounds tested. Thus, these new screening-tools for water-sediment and soil are considered suitable to determine sound and reliable quantitative mineralization data including mineralization kinetics in addition to the water-only ready biodegradability tests according to OECD 301.

  3. Development and application of screening tools for biodegradation in water-sediment systems and soil.

    PubMed

    Junker, Thomas; Coors, Anja; Schüürmann, Gerrit

    2016-02-15

    Two new screening-test systems for biodegradation in water-sediment systems (WSST; Water-Sediment Screening Tool) and soil (SST; Soil Screening Tool) were developed in analogy with the water-only test system OECD 301C (MITI-test). The test systems could be applied successfully to determine reproducible experimental mineralization rates and kinetics on the screening-test level for fifteen organic chemicals in water (MITI), water-sediment (WSST) and soil (SST). Substance-specific differences were observed for mineralization compared among the three test systems. Based on mineralization rate and mineralization half-life, the fifteen compounds could be grouped into four biodegradation categories: substances with high mineralization and a half-life <28 days in (1) all three test systems, (2) only in the MITI test and in the WSST, (3) only in the SST, and (4) none of the test systems. The observed differences between the MITI results and the WSST and SST biodegradation rates of the compounds do not reflect their (reversible) sorption into organic matter in terms of experimental K(oc) values and log D values for the relevant pH range. Regarding mineralization kinetics we recommend to determine the lag-phase, mineralization half-life and mineralization rate using a 5-parameter logistic regression for degradation curves with and without lag-phase. Experimental data obtained with the WSST and the SST could be verified by showing good agreement with biodegradation data from databases and literature for the majority of compounds tested. Thus, these new screening-tools for water-sediment and soil are considered suitable to determine sound and reliable quantitative mineralization data including mineralization kinetics in addition to the water-only ready biodegradability tests according to OECD 301. PMID:26774960

  4. Accuracy of the Emotion Thermometers (ET) screening tool in patients undergoing surgery for upper gastrointestinal malignancies.

    PubMed

    Schubart, Jane R; Mitchell, Alex J; Dietrich, Laura; Gusani, Niraj J

    2015-01-01

    Distress is common in patients with gastrointestinal cancers. Most conventional scales are too long for routine clinic use. We tested the Emotion Thermometers (ET) tool, a brief visual-analogue scale. There are four emotional upset thermometers: distress, anxiety, depression, and anger. Sixty-nine surgical patients were recruited from an academic hospital clinic in 2012; 64 had complete data for Beck depression inventory and ET. The sample size was modest due to the specialist nature of the sample. We examined sensitivity, specificity, and area under the receiver-operator-curve. A dimensional multi-domain approach to screening for emotional disorders is preferable to using the distress thermometer alone and can be achieved with little extra time burden to clinicians. The ET is a diagnostic tool that is primarily designed for screening to identify cancer patients who would benefit by enhanced psychosocial care.

  5. Hybrid quadrupole-orbitrap mass spectrometry analysis with accurate-mass database and parallel reaction monitoring for high-throughput screening and quantification of multi-xenobiotics in honey.

    PubMed

    Li, Yi; Zhang, Jinzhen; Jin, Yue; Wang, Lin; Zhao, Wen; Zhang, Wenwen; Zhai, Lifei; Zhang, Yaping; Zhang, Yongxin; Zhou, Jinhui

    2016-01-15

    This study reports a rapid, automated screening and quantification method for the determination of multi-xenobiotic residues in honey using ultra-high performance liquid chromatography-hybrid quadrupole-Orbitrap mass spectrometry (UHPLC-Q-Orbitrap) with a user-built accurate-mass database plus parallel reaction monitoring (PRM). The database contains multi-xenobiotic information including formulas, adduct types, theoretical exact mass and retention time, characteristic fragment ions, ion ratios, and mass accuracies. A simple sample preparation method was developed to reduce xenobiotic loss in the honey samples. The screening method was validated based on retention time deviation, mass accuracy via full scan-data-dependent MS/MS (full scan-ddMS2), multi-isotope ratio, characteristic ion ratio, sensitivity, and positive/negative switching performance between the spiked sample and corresponding standard solution. The quantification method based on the PRM mode is a promising new quantitative tool which we validated in terms of selectivity, linearity, recovery (accuracy), repeatability (precision), decision limit (CCα), detection capability (CCβ), matrix effects, and carry-over. The optimized methods proposed in this study enable the automated screening and quantification of 157 compounds in less than 15 min in honey. The results of this study, as they represent a convenient protocol for large-scale screening and quantification, also provide a research approach for analysis of various contaminants in other matrices.

  6. 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

  7. Validation of nutritional screening tools against anthropometric and functional assessments among elderly people in selangor.

    PubMed

    Suzana, Shahar; Siti Saifa, Hussain

    2007-03-01

    This cross sectional study was conducted to determine the validity of three screening tools, Mini Nutritional Assessment Short Form (MNA-SF), Malnutrition Risk Screening Tool for Community (MRST-C) and Malnutrition Risk Screening Tool for Hospital (MRST-H) among elderly people at health clinics. The screening tools were validated against anthropometric and functional assessments. The anthropometric assessments that were carried out included body weight, height, arm span, body mass index (BMI), calf circumference (CC) and mid upper arm circumference (MUAC). A set of questionnaire on manual dexterity, muscular strength, instrumental activities daily living (IADL) and cognitive status was used to assess functional abilities. A total of 156 subjects were recruited from rural (38 subjects) and urban (118 subjects) health clinics at Sabak Bernam and Cheras respectively. Subjects' age ranged from 60 to 83 years old, with 44.2% were men and 55.8% women. The prevalence of muscle wasting among the subjects assessed from MUAC and CC were both 7.0%. MNA-SF had the highest correlation with BMI (r = 0.497, p<0.001), followed by MUAC (r = 0.398, p<0.001), CC (r = 0.473, p<0.001), cognitive assessment (r = 0.229, p<0.001) and handgrip strength (r = 0.209, p<0.001). Whilst MRST-C had the highest correlation with IADL score (r =-0.320, p<0.001) and MRST-H had the highest correlation with the lock and key test (r = -0.325, p<0.01). Sensitivity was the highest for MNA-SF (93.2%), followed by MRST-H (52.5%) and MRST-C (25.8%). Specificity was the highest for MRST-H (97.3%), followed by MRST-C (90.8%) and MNA-SF (79.4%). Positive predictive value (PPV) for MRST-H, MNA-SF and MRST-C was 55.5%, 18.2% and 14.1%, respectively. In conclusion, among the screening tools being validated, MNA-SF is considered the most appropriate tool to be used in health clinics for identification of elderly individuals who are at high risk of malnutrition.

  8. Solid phase red cell adherence immunoassay for anti-HIV 1: a simple, rapid, and accurate method for donor screening.

    PubMed

    Watson-Williams, E J; Yee, J L; Carlson, J R; Mertens, S C; Holland, P; Sinor, L; Plapp, F V

    1988-01-01

    In technically developed countries in which acquired immunodeficiency syndrome is a risk to the recipients of blood or tissue, it is mandatory to screen the donor for evidence of HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) infection. Current tests, based on enzyme-linked immunoassay, are time-consuming and expensive and as such are unsuitable for developing countries. We describe a second generation test using anti-human IgG coupled to red cells as the indicator of antibody having reacted with test antigen (1). The test is complete within ten minutes, simple to perform and to read and has 100% sensitivity and 99% specificity compared with Western blot. It is ideal for the rapid screening of organ donors and for the screening of blood donors where cost is a major consideration.

  9. Prospective performance evaluation of selected common virtual screening tools. Case study: Cyclooxygenase (COX) 1 and 2

    PubMed Central

    Kaserer, Teresa; Temml, Veronika; Kutil, Zsofia; Vanek, Tomas; Landa, Premysl; Schuster, Daniela

    2015-01-01

    Computational methods can be applied in drug development for the identification of novel lead candidates, but also for the prediction of pharmacokinetic properties and potential adverse effects, thereby aiding to prioritize and identify the most promising compounds. In principle, several techniques are available for this purpose, however, which one is the most suitable for a specific research objective still requires further investigation. Within this study, the performance of several programs, representing common virtual screening methods, was compared in a prospective manner. First, we selected top-ranked virtual screening hits from the three methods pharmacophore modeling, shape-based modeling, and docking. For comparison, these hits were then additionally predicted by external pharmacophore- and 2D similarity-based bioactivity profiling tools. Subsequently, the biological activities of the selected hits were assessed in vitro, which allowed for evaluating and comparing the prospective performance of the applied tools. Although all methods performed well, considerable differences were observed concerning hit rates, true positive and true negative hits, and hitlist composition. Our results suggest that a rational selection of the applied method represents a powerful strategy to maximize the success of a research project, tightly linked to its aims. We employed cyclooxygenase as application example, however, the focus of this study lied on highlighting the differences in the virtual screening tool performances and not in the identification of novel COX-inhibitors. PMID:25916906

  10. Nutrition Screening Tools and the Prediction of Clinical Outcomes among Chinese Hospitalized Gastrointestinal Disease Patients

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Fang; Chen, Wei; Bruening, Kay Stearns; Raj, Sudha

    2016-01-01

    Nutrition risk Screening 2002 (NRS-2002) and Subjective Global Assessment (SGA) are widely used screening tools but have not been compared in a Chinese population. We conducted secondary data analysis of a cross-sectional study which included 332 hospitalized gastrointestinal disease patients, collected by the Gastrointestinal department of Peking Union Medical College Hospital (PUMCH) in 2008. Results of NRS-2002 and SGA screening tools, complications, length of stay (LOS), cost, and death were measured. The agreement between the tools was assessed via Kappa (κ) statistics. The performance of NRS-2002 and SGA in predicting LOS and cost was assessed via linear regression. The complications and death prediction of tools was assessed using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. NRS-2002 and SGA identified nutrition risk at 59.0% and 45.2% respectively. Moderate agreement (κ >0.50) between the two tools was found among all age groups except individuals aged ≤ 20, which only slight agreement was found (κ = 0.087). NRS-2002 (R square 0.130) and SGA (R square 0.140) did not perform differently in LOS prediction. The cost prediction of NRS-2002 (R square 0.198) and SGA (R square 0.190) were not significantly different. There was no difference between NRS-2002 (infectious complications: area under ROC (AUROC) = 0.615, death: AUROC = 0.810) and SGA (infectious complications: AUROC = 0.600, death: AUROC = 0.846) in predicting infectious complication and death, but NRS-2002 (0.738) seemed to perform better than SGA (0.552) in predicting non-infectious complications. The risk of malnutrition among patients was high. NRS-2002 and SGA have similar capacity to predict LOS, cost, infectious complications and death, but NRS-2002 performed better in predicting non-infectious complications. PMID:27490480

  11. Nutrition Screening Tools and the Prediction of Clinical Outcomes among Chinese Hospitalized Gastrointestinal Disease Patients.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fang; Chen, Wei; Bruening, Kay Stearns; Raj, Sudha; Larsen, David A

    2016-01-01

    Nutrition risk Screening 2002 (NRS-2002) and Subjective Global Assessment (SGA) are widely used screening tools but have not been compared in a Chinese population. We conducted secondary data analysis of a cross-sectional study which included 332 hospitalized gastrointestinal disease patients, collected by the Gastrointestinal department of Peking Union Medical College Hospital (PUMCH) in 2008. Results of NRS-2002 and SGA screening tools, complications, length of stay (LOS), cost, and death were measured. The agreement between the tools was assessed via Kappa (κ) statistics. The performance of NRS-2002 and SGA in predicting LOS and cost was assessed via linear regression. The complications and death prediction of tools was assessed using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. NRS-2002 and SGA identified nutrition risk at 59.0% and 45.2% respectively. Moderate agreement (κ >0.50) between the two tools was found among all age groups except individuals aged ≤ 20, which only slight agreement was found (κ = 0.087). NRS-2002 (R square 0.130) and SGA (R square 0.140) did not perform differently in LOS prediction. The cost prediction of NRS-2002 (R square 0.198) and SGA (R square 0.190) were not significantly different. There was no difference between NRS-2002 (infectious complications: area under ROC (AUROC) = 0.615, death: AUROC = 0.810) and SGA (infectious complications: AUROC = 0.600, death: AUROC = 0.846) in predicting infectious complication and death, but NRS-2002 (0.738) seemed to perform better than SGA (0.552) in predicting non-infectious complications. The risk of malnutrition among patients was high. NRS-2002 and SGA have similar capacity to predict LOS, cost, infectious complications and death, but NRS-2002 performed better in predicting non-infectious complications. PMID:27490480

  12. Development of a liquefaction hazard screening tool for caltrans bridge sites

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knudsen, K.-L.; Bott, J.D.J.; Woods, M.O.; McGuire, T.L.

    2009-01-01

    We have developed a liquefaction hazard screening tool for the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) that is being used to evaluate the liquefaction hazard to approximately 13,000 bridge sites in California. Because of the large number of bridge sites to be evaluated, we developed a tool that makes use of parameters not typically considered in site-specific liquefaction investigations. We assessed geologic, topographic, seismic hazard, and subsurface conditions at about 100 sites of past liquefaction in California. Among the parameters we found common to many of these sites are: (a) low elevations, (b) proximity to a water body, and (c) presence of geologically youthful deposits or artificial fill materials. The nature of the study necessitated the use of readily available data, preferably datasets that are consistent across the state. The screening tool we provided to Caltrans makes use of the following parameters: (1) proximity to a water body, (2) whether the bridge crosses a water body, (3) the age of site geologic materials and the environment in which the materials were deposited, as discerned from available digital geologic maps, (4) probabilistic shaking estimates, (5) the site elevation, (6) information from available liquefaction hazard maps [covering the 9-county San Francisco Bay Area and Ventura County] and California Geological Survey (CGS) Zones of Required Investigation. For bridge sites at which subsurface boring data were available (from CGS' existing database), we calculated Displacement Potential Index values using a methodology developed by Allison Faris and Jiaer Wu. Caltrans' staff will use this hazard-screening tool, along with other tools focused on bridges and foundations, to prioritize site-specific investigations. ?? 2009 ASCE.

  13. Testing the woman abuse screening tool to identify intimate partner violence in Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Iskandar, Livia; Braun, Kathryn L; Katz, Alan R

    2015-04-01

    Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is a global public health problem. IPV prevalence in Indonesia has been estimated to be less than 1%, based on reported cases. It is likely that IPV prevalence is underreported in Indonesia, as it is in many other countries. Screening for IPV has been found to increase IPV identification, but no screening tools are in use in Indonesia. The aim of this study was to test the translated Woman Abuse Screening Tool (WAST) for detecting IPV in Indonesia. The WAST was tested against a diagnostic interview by a trained psychologist on 240 women attending two Primary Health Centers in Jakarta. IPV prevalence and the reliability, sensitivity, and specificity of the WAST were estimated. Prevalence of IPV by diagnostic interview was 36.3%, much higher than published estimates. The most common forms of IPV identified were psychological (85%) and physical abuse (24%). Internal reliability of the WAST was high (α = .801). A WAST score of 13 (out of 24) is the recommended cutoff for identifying IPV, but only 17% of the Indonesian sample scored 13 or higher. Test sensitivity of the WAST with a cutoff score of 13 was only 41.9%, with a specificity of 96.8%. With a cutoff score of 10, the sensitivity improved to 84.9%, while the specificity decreased to 61.0%. Use of the WAST with a cutoff score of 10 provides good sensitivity and reasonable specificity and would provide a much-needed screening tool for use in Indonesia. Although a lower cutoff would yield a greater proportion of false positives, most of the true cases would be identified, increasing the possibility that women experiencing abuse would receive needed assistance.

  14. Testing the Woman Abuse Screening Tool to Identify Intimate Partner Violence in Indonesia

    PubMed Central

    Iskandar, Livia; Braun, Kathryn L.; Katz, Alan R.

    2015-01-01

    Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is a global public health problem. IPV prevalence in Indonesia has been estimated to be less than 1%, based on reported cases. It is likely that IPV prevalence is underreported in Indonesia, as it is in many other countries. Screening for IPV has been found to increase IPV identification, but no screening tools are in use in Indonesia. The aim of this study was to test the translated Woman Abuse Screening Tool (WAST) for detecting IPV in Indonesia. The WAST was tested against a diagnostic interview by a trained psychologist on 240 women attending two Primary Health Centers in Jakarta. IPV prevalence and the reliability, sensitivity, and specificity of the WAST were estimated. Prevalence of IPV by diagnostic interview was 36.3%, much higher than published estimates. The most common forms of IPV identified were psychological (85%) and physical abuse (24%). Internal reliability of the WAST was high (α = .801). A WAST score of 13 (out of 24) is the recommended cutoff for identifying IPV, but only 17% of the Indonesian sample scored 13 or higher. Test sensitivity of the WAST with a cutoff score of 13 was only 41.9%, with a specificity of 96.8%. With a cutoff score of 10, the sensitivity improved to 84.9%, while the specificity decreased to 61.0%. Use of the WAST with a cutoff score of 10 provides good sensitivity and reasonable specificity and would provide a much-needed screening tool for use in Indonesia. Although a lower cutoff would yield a greater proportion of false positives, most of the true cases would be identified, increasing the possibility that women experiencing abuse would receive needed assistance. PMID:25012952

  15. A high-throughput thermoelectric power-factor screening tool for rapid construction of thermoelectric property diagrams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otani, M.; Lowhorn, N. D.; Schenck, P. K.; Wong-Ng, W.; Green, M. L.; Itaka, K.; Koinuma, H.

    2007-09-01

    The authors have developed a high-throughput screening tool that maps out thermoelectric power factors of combinatorial composition-spread film libraries. The screening tool allows one to measure the electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient of over 1000 sample points within 6h. Seebeck coefficients of standard films measured with the screening tool are in good agreement with those measured by traditional thermoelectric measurement apparatus. The rapid construction of thermoelectric property diagrams is illustrated for two systems: (Zn, Al)-O binary composition-spread film on Al2O3 (0001) and (Ca,Sr,La)3Co4O9 ternary composition-spread film on Si (100).

  16. Postanalytical tools improve performance of newborn screening by tandem mass spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Patricia L.; Marquardt, Gregg; McHugh, David M.S.; Currier, Robert J.; Tang, Hao; Stoway, Stephanie D.; Rinaldo, Piero

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to compare performance metrics of postanalytical interpretive tools of the Region 4 Stork collaborative project to the actual outcome based on cutoff values for amino acids and acylcarnitines selected by the California newborn screening program. Methods: This study was a retrospective review of the outcome of 176,186 subjects born in California between 1 January and 30 June 2012. Raw data were uploaded to the Region 4 Stork Web portal as .csv files to calculate tool scores for 48 conditions simultaneously using a previously unpublished functionality, the tool runner. Scores for individual target conditions were deemed informative when equal or greater to the value representing the first percentile rank of known true-positive cases (17,099 cases in total). Results: In the study period, the actual false-positive rate and positive predictive value were 0.26 and 10%, respectively. Utilization of the Region 4 Stork tools, simple interpretation rules, and second-tier tests could have achieved a false-positive rate as low as 0.02% and a positive predictive value >50% by replacing the cutoff system with Region 4 Stork tools as the primary method for postanalytical interpretation. Conclusion: Region 4 Stork interpretive tools, second-tier tests, and other evidence-based interpretation rules could have reduced false-positive cases by up to 90% in California. PMID:24875301

  17. Usability Testing of a National Substance Use Screening Tool Embedded in Electronic Health Records

    PubMed Central

    DeStio, Catherine; McCullagh, Lauren; Kapoor, Sandeep; Morley, Jeanne

    2016-01-01

    Background Screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) is currently being implemented into health systems nationally via paper and electronic methods. Objective The purpose of this study was to evaluate the integration of an electronic SBIRT tool into an existing paper-based SBIRT clinical workflow in a patient-centered medical home. Methods Usability testing was conducted in an academic ambulatory clinic. Two rounds of usability testing were done with medical office assistants (MOAs) using a paper and electronic version of the SBIRT tool, with two and four participants, respectively. Qualitative and quantitative data was analyzed to determine the impact of both tools on clinical workflow. A second round of usability testing was done with the revised electronic version and compared with the first version. Results Personal workflow barriers cited in the first round of testing were that the electronic health record (EHR) tool was disruptive to patient’s visits. In Round 2 of testing, MOAs reported favoring the electronic version due to improved layout and the inclusion of an alert system embedded in the EHR. For example, using the system usability scale (SUS), MOAs reported a grade “1” for the statement, “I would like to use this system frequently” during the first round of testing but a “5” during the second round of analysis. Conclusions The importance of testing usability of various mediums of tools used in health care screening is highlighted by the findings of this study. In the first round of testing, the electronic tool was reported as less user friendly, being difficult to navigate, and time consuming. Many issues faced in the first generation of the tool were improved in the second generation after usability was evaluated. This study demonstrates how usability testing of an electronic SBRIT tool can help to identify challenges that can impact clinical workflow. However, a limitation of this study was the small sample size

  18. Accurate screening for synthetic preservatives in beverage using high performance liquid chromatography with time-of-flight mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiu Qin; Zhang, Feng; Sun, Yan Yan; Yong, Wei; Chu, Xiao Gang; Fang, Yan Yan; Zweigenbaum, Jerry

    2008-02-11

    In this study, liquid chromatography time-of-flight mass spectrometry (HPLC/TOF-MS) is applied to qualitation and quantitation of 18 synthetic preservatives in beverage. The identification by HPLC/TOF-MS is accomplished with the accurate mass (the subsequent generated empirical formula) of the protonated molecules [M+H]+ or the deprotonated molecules [M-H]-, along with the accurate mass of their main fragment ions. In order to obtain sufficient sensitivity for quantitation purposes (using the protonated or deprotonated molecule) and additional qualitative mass spectrum information provided by the fragments ions, segment program of fragmentor voltages is designed in positive and negative ion mode, respectively. Accurate mass measurements are highly useful in the complex sample analyses since they allow us to achieve a high degree of specificity, often needed when other interferents are present in the matrix. The mass accuracy typically obtained is routinely better than 3 ppm. The 18 compounds behave linearly in the 0.005-5.0mg.kg(-1) concentration range, with correlation coefficient >0.996. The recoveries at the tested concentrations of 1.0mg.kg(-1)-100mg.kg(-1) are 81-106%, with coefficients of variation <7.5%. Limits of detection (LODs) range from 0.0005 to 0.05 mg.kg(-1), which are far below the required maximum residue level (MRL) for these preservatives in foodstuff. The method is suitable for routine quantitative and qualitative analyses of synthetic preservatives in foodstuff.

  19. Self-collection tools for routine cervical cancer screening: a review.

    PubMed

    Othman, Nor Hayati; Mohamad Zaki, Fatma Hariati

    2014-01-01

    Sub-optimal participation is a major problem with cervical cancer screening in developing countries which have no organized national screening program. There are various notable factors such as 'embarrassment', 'discomfort' and 'no time' cited by women as they are often also the bread winners for the family. Implementation of self-sampling methods may increase their participation. The aim of this article was to provide a survey of various types of self-sampling tools which are commonly used in collection of cervical cells. We reviewed currently available self-sampling devices and collated the advantages and disadvantages of each in terms of its acceptance and its accuracy in giving desired results. In general, regardless of which device is used, self-sampling for cervical scrapings is highly acceptable to women in most of the studies cited. PMID:25374168

  20. Developing a Web-based dietary sodium screening tool for personalized assessment and feedback.

    PubMed

    Arcand, Joanne; Abdulaziz, Kasim; Bennett, Carol; L'abbé, Mary R; Manuel, Douglas G

    2014-03-01

    Dietary sodium reduction is commonly used in the treatment of hypertension, heart and liver failure, and chronic kidney disease. Sodium reduction is also an important public health problem since most of the Canadian population consumes sodium in excess of their daily requirements. Lack of awareness about the amount of sodium consumed and the sources of sodium in diet is common, and undoubtedly a major contributor to excess sodium consumption. There are few known tools available to screen and provide personalized information about sodium in the diet. Therefore, we developed a Web-based sodium intake screening tool called the Salt Calculator ( www.projectbiglife.ca ), which is publicly available for individuals to assess the amount and sources of sodium in their diet. The Calculator contains 23 questions focusing on restaurant foods, packaged foods, and added salt. Questions were developed using sodium consumption data from the Canadian Community Health Survey cycle 2.2 and up-to-date information on sodium levels in packaged and restaurant food databases from the University of Toronto. The Calculator translates existing knowledge about dietary sodium into a tool that can be accessed by the public as well as integrated into clinical practice to address the high levels of sodium presently in the Canadian diet.

  1. Role of Open Source Tools and Resources in Virtual Screening for Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Karthikeyan, Muthukumarasamy; Vyas, Renu

    2015-01-01

    Advancement in chemoinformatics research in parallel with availability of high performance computing platform has made handling of large scale multi-dimensional scientific data for high throughput drug discovery easier. In this study we have explored publicly available molecular databases with the help of open-source based integrated in-house molecular informatics tools for virtual screening. The virtual screening literature for past decade has been extensively investigated and thoroughly analyzed to reveal interesting patterns with respect to the drug, target, scaffold and disease space. The review also focuses on the integrated chemoinformatics tools that are capable of harvesting chemical data from textual literature information and transform them into truly computable chemical structures, identification of unique fragments and scaffolds from a class of compounds, automatic generation of focused virtual libraries, computation of molecular descriptors for structure-activity relationship studies, application of conventional filters used in lead discovery along with in-house developed exhaustive PTC (Pharmacophore, Toxicophores and Chemophores) filters and machine learning tools for the design of potential disease specific inhibitors. A case study on kinase inhibitors is provided as an example.

  2. Qualitative Investigation of a Brief Chronic Pain Screening Tool in HIV-Infected Patients

    PubMed Central

    Walcott, Melonie M.; Herbey, Ivan; Chamot, Eric; Ritchie, Christine; Saag, Michael S.; Kertesz, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Chronic pain in HIV-infected patients is prevalent but understudied. A limitation of HIV/chronic pain research to date is the lack of a widely used chronic pain screening tool. A Brief Chronic Pain Screening tool (BCPS) has been described, but has not yet been tested in a clinical population. This study sought to evaluate how the BCPS is experienced by HIV-infected individuals, and adapt its questions if necessary. We conducted cognitive interviews using cognitive inquiry in participants from the UAB 1917 HIV Clinic Cohort. Data were analyzed using a process of inductive, iterative coding by three investigators. Results: Of 30 participants, most were male, African American, and less than 50 years old. Participants reported that the questions were understandable; however, feedback suggested concerns regarding lack of specificity in regard to the intensity and consistency of pain. An introductory statement aimed at improving clarity resulted in more divergent responses. This research team concluded that the version of the BCPS used in the first 30 interviews was optimum. Its inclusive language allows the respondent to decide what pain merits reporting. This study is the first investigation of the BCPS in a clinical population, and should lead to further quantitative validation studies of this tool. PMID:24621145

  3. Appraisal of Artificial Screening Techniques of Tomato to Accurately Reflect Field Performance of the Late Blight Resistance

    PubMed Central

    Nowakowska, Marzena; Nowicki, Marcin; Kłosińska, Urszula; Maciorowski, Robert; Kozik, Elżbieta U.

    2014-01-01

    Late blight (LB) caused by the oomycete Phytophthora infestans continues to thwart global tomato production, while only few resistant cultivars have been introduced locally. In order to gain from the released tomato germplasm with LB resistance, we compared the 5-year field performance of LB resistance in several tomato cultigens, with the results of controlled conditions testing (i.e., detached leaflet/leaf, whole plant). In case of these artificial screening techniques, the effects of plant age and inoculum concentration were additionally considered. In the field trials, LA 1033, L 3707, L 3708 displayed the highest LB resistance, and could be used for cultivar development under Polish conditions. Of the three methods using controlled conditions, the detached leaf and the whole plant tests had the highest correlation with thefield experiments. The plant age effect on LB resistance in tomato reported here, irrespective of the cultigen tested or inoculum concentration used, makes it important to standardize the test parameters when screening for resistance. Our results help show why other reports disagree on LB resistance in tomato. PMID:25279467

  4. Reliability and Validity of the Acanthosis Nigricans Screening Tool for Use in Elementary School-Age Children by School Nurses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Leslie K.; Hall, Lynne M.

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to test the reliability and validity of an acanthosis nigricans (AN) screening tool for use in elementary school-age children of different ethnic groups. Cross-sectional data were collected via observation of 288, 5- to 12-year-old school-age children. Three nurse clinicians used a 0-4 grade AN screening tool to rate…

  5. VitalQPlus: a potential screening tool for early diagnosis of COPD

    PubMed Central

    Sui, Chee Fai; Ming, Long Chiau; Neoh, Chin Fen; Ibrahim, Baharudin

    2015-01-01

    Background This study utilized a validated combination of a COPD Population Screener (COPD-PS) questionnaire and a handheld spirometric device as a screening tool for patients at high risk of COPD, such as smokers. The study aimed to investigate and pilot the feasibility and application of this combined assessment, which we termed the “VitalQPlus”, as a screening tool for the early detection of COPD, especially in primary care settings. Methods This was a cross-sectional study screening potentially undiagnosed COPD patients using a validated five-item COPD-PS questionnaire together with a handheld spirometric device. Patients were recruited from selected Malaysian government primary care health centers. Results Of the total of 83 final participants, only 24.1% (20/83) were recruited from Perak and Penang (peninsular Malaysia) compared to 75.9% (63/83) from Sabah (Borneo region). Our dual assessment approach identified 8.4% of the surveyed patients as having potentially undiagnosed COPD. When only the Vitalograph COPD-6 screening tool was used, 15.8% of patients were detected with a forced expiratory volume in 1 second/forced expiratory volume in 6 seconds (FEV1/FEV6) ratio at <0.75, while 35.9% of patients were detected with the COPD-PS questionnaire. These findings suggested that this dual assessment approach has a greater chance of identifying potentially undiagnosed COPD patients compared to the Vitalograph COPD-6 or COPD-PS questionnaire when used alone. Our findings show that patients with more symptoms (scores of ≥5) yielded twice the percentage of outcomes of FEV1/FEV6 <0.75 compared to patients with fewer COPD symptoms (scores <5). Conclusion With the availability of a simple screening questionnaire and the COPD-6, there is an opportunity easily to make patients more aware of their lung symptoms and to encourage the provision of early treatment. The proposed dual assessment approach, which we termed the VitalQPlus, may play a profound role in the

  6. A better screening tool for HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders: is it what clinicians need?

    PubMed Central

    Brouillette, Marie-J.; Mayo, Nancy; Fellows, Lesley K.; Lebedeva, Elena; Higgins, Johanne; Overton, Edgar T.; Ances, Beau M.; Koski, Lisa

    2015-01-01

    Objective: Existing screening tools for HIV-Associated Neurocognitive Disorders (HAND) may lack the accuracy required for clinical use. We hypothesized that the diagnostic accuracy of the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) as a screening tool for HAND might be improved with a stronger scoring methodology. Design: Two hundred HIV-positive participants aged 18–65 years completed the MoCA and a battery of neuropsychological tests. Methods: HAND diagnosis was established according to the Frascati criteria, and an NPZ-8 score was also calculated. Rasch analysis was applied to the MoCA items to create a quantitative score. Results: The optimal cut-off on the quantitative MoCA for detecting impairment as per Frascati criteria yielded a sensitivity of 0.74 and a specificity of 0.68. Overall accuracy was 0.79 (95% CI: 0.73–0.85), an improvement over standard scoring methods. However, whether cognition was quantified with the quantitative MoCA or with NPZ-8, there was substantial overlap between diagnostic categories; several individuals categorized as impaired had better overall cognitive function as assessed by NPZ-8 or quantitative MoCA than those classified as normal using standard criteria. Conclusion: Quantifying performance on MoCA items through Rasch analysis improves its accuracy as a screening tool for HAND, and demonstrates that cognition can be measured as a unidimensional construct in HIV, at least at the level of precision of bedside testing. However, the current categorical diagnostic approach to HAND is poorly aligned with summary measures of cognitive ability. Measuring cognition as a quasi-continuous construct may be more relevant than conventional HAND diagnostic categories for many clinical purposes. PMID:25291105

  7. User's Guide to the Water-Analysis Screening Tool (WAST): A Tool for Assessing Available Water Resources in Relation to Aquatic-Resource Uses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stuckey, Marla H.; Kiesler, James L.

    2008-01-01

    A water-analysis screening tool (WAST) was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey, in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, to provide an initial screening of areas in the state where potential problems may exist related to the availability of water resources to meet current and future water-use demands. The tool compares water-use information to an initial screening criteria of the 7-day, 10-year low-flow statistic (7Q10) resulting in a screening indicator for influences of net withdrawals (withdrawals minus discharges) on aquatic-resource uses. This report is intended to serve as a guide for using the screening tool. The WAST can display general basin characteristics, water-use information, and screening-indicator information for over 10,000 watersheds in the state. The tool includes 12 primary functions that allow the user to display watershed information, edit water-use and water-supply information, observe effects downstream from edited water-use information, reset edited values to baseline, load new water-use information, save and retrieve scenarios, and save output as a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet.

  8. 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

  9. BFH-OST, a new predictive screening tool for identifying osteoporosis in postmenopausal Han Chinese women

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Zhao; Yang, Yong; Lin, JiSheng; Zhang, XiaoDong; Meng, Qian; Wang, BingQiang; Fei, Qi

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To develop a simple new clinical screening tool to identify primary osteoporosis by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) in postmenopausal women and to compare its validity with the Osteoporosis Self-Assessment Tool for Asians (OSTA) in a Han Chinese population. Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted, enrolling 1,721 community-dwelling postmenopausal Han Chinese women. All the subjects completed a structured questionnaire and had their bone mineral density measured using DXA. Using logistic regression analysis, we assessed the ability of numerous potential risk factors examined in the questionnaire to identify women with osteoporosis. Based on this analysis, we build a new predictive model, the Beijing Friendship Hospital Osteoporosis Self-Assessment Tool (BFH-OST). Receiver operating characteristic curves were generated to compare the validity of the new model and OSTA in identifying postmenopausal women at increased risk of primary osteoporosis as defined according to the World Health Organization criteria. Results At screening, it was found that of the 1,721 subjects with DXA, 22.66% had osteoporosis and a further 47.36% had osteopenia. Of the items screened in the questionnaire, it was found that age, weight, height, body mass index, personal history of fracture after the age of 45 years, history of fragility fracture in either parent, current smoking, and consumption of three of more alcoholic drinks per day were all predictive of osteoporosis. However, age at menarche and menopause, years since menopause, and number of pregnancies and live births were irrelevant in this study. The logistic regression analysis and item reduction yielded a final tool (BFH-OST) based on age, body weight, height, and history of fracture after the age of 45 years. The BFH-OST index (cutoff =9.1), which performed better than OSTA, had a sensitivity of 73.6% and a specificity of 72.7% for identifying osteoporosis, with an area under the receiver operating

  10. Screening for use of alcohol, tobacco and cannabis in pregnancy using self-report tools.

    PubMed

    Hotham, E; White, J; Ali, R; Robinson, J

    2012-08-01

    The World Health Organization has identified substance use in the top 20 risk factors for ill health. Risks in pregnancy are compounded, with risk to the woman's health, to pregnancy progression and on both the foetus and the newborn. Intrauterine exposure can result in negative influences on offspring development, sometimes into adulthood. With effectively two patients, there is a clear need for antenatal screening. Biomarker reliability is limited and research efforts have been directed to self-report tools, often attempting to address potential lack of veracity if women feel guilty about substance use and worried about possible stigmatization. Tools, which assume the behaviour, are likely to elicit more honest responses; querying pre-pregnancy use would likely have the same effect. Although veracity is heightened if substance use questions are embedded within health and social functioning questionnaires, such tools may be too lengthy clinically. It has been proposed that screening only for alcohol and tobacco, with focus on the month pre-pregnancy, could enable identification of all other substances. Alternatively, the Revised Fagerstrom Questionnaire could be used initially, tobacco being highly indicative of substance use generally. The ASSIST V.3.0 is readily administered and covers all substances, although the pregnancy 'risk level' cut-off for tobacco is not established. Alcohol tools - the 4Ps, TLFB and 'drug' CAGE (with E: query of use to avoid withdrawal) - have been studied with other substances and could be used. General psychosocial distress and mental ill-health often co-exist with substance use and identification of substance use needs to become legitimate practice for obstetric clinicians.

  11. Noise Reduction in High-Throughput Gene Perturbation Screens

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Motivation: Accurate interpretation of perturbation screens is essential for a successful functional investigation. However, the screened phenotypes are often distorted by noise, and their analysis requires specialized statistical analysis tools. The number and scope of statistical methods available...

  12. Differentially pumped spray deposition as a rapid screening tool for organic and perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Yen-Sook; Hwang, Kyeongil; Scholes, Fiona H.; Watkins, Scott E.; Kim, Dong-Yu; Vak, Doojin

    2016-02-01

    We report a spray deposition technique as a screening tool for solution processed solar cells. A dual-feed spray nozzle is introduced to deposit donor and acceptor materials separately and to form blended films on substrates in situ. Using a differential pump system with a motorised spray nozzle, the effect of film thickness, solution flow rates and the blend ratio of donor and acceptor materials on device performance can be found in a single experiment. Using this method, polymer solar cells based on poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT):(6,6)-phenyl C61 butyric acid methyl ester (PC61BM) are fabricated with numerous combinations of thicknesses and blend ratios. Results obtained from this technique show that the optimum ratio of materials is consistent with previously reported values confirming this technique is a very useful and effective screening method. This high throughput screening method is also used in a single-feed configuration. In the single-feed mode, methylammonium iodide solution is deposited on lead iodide films to create a photoactive layer of perovskite solar cells. Devices featuring a perovskite layer fabricated by this spray process demonstrated a power conversion efficiencies of up to 7.9%.

  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. Differentially pumped spray deposition as a rapid screening tool for organic and perovskite solar cells.

    PubMed

    Jung, Yen-Sook; Hwang, Kyeongil; Scholes, Fiona H; Watkins, Scott E; Kim, Dong-Yu; Vak, Doojin

    2016-01-01

    We report a spray deposition technique as a screening tool for solution processed solar cells. A dual-feed spray nozzle is introduced to deposit donor and acceptor materials separately and to form blended films on substrates in situ. Using a differential pump system with a motorised spray nozzle, the effect of film thickness, solution flow rates and the blend ratio of donor and acceptor materials on device performance can be found in a single experiment. Using this method, polymer solar cells based on poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT):(6,6)-phenyl C61 butyric acid methyl ester (PC61BM) are fabricated with numerous combinations of thicknesses and blend ratios. Results obtained from this technique show that the optimum ratio of materials is consistent with previously reported values confirming this technique is a very useful and effective screening method. This high throughput screening method is also used in a single-feed configuration. In the single-feed mode, methylammonium iodide solution is deposited on lead iodide films to create a photoactive layer of perovskite solar cells. Devices featuring a perovskite layer fabricated by this spray process demonstrated a power conversion efficiencies of up to 7.9%. PMID:26853266

  15. Stem cells and small molecule screening: haploid embryonic stem cells as a new tool.

    PubMed

    Wu, Bi; Li, Wei; Wang, Liu; Liu, Zhong-hua; Zhao, Xiao-yang

    2013-06-01

    Stem cells can both self-renew and differentiate into various cell types under certain conditions, which makes them a good model for development and disease studies. Recently, chemical approaches have been widely applied in stem cell biology by promoting stem cell self-renewal, proliferation, differentiation and somatic cell reprogramming using specific small molecules. Conversely, stem cells and their derivatives also provide an efficient and robust platform for small molecule and drug screening. Here, we review the current research and applications of small molecules that modulate stem cell self-renewal and differentiation and improve reprogramming, as well as the applications that use stem cells as a tool for small molecule screening. Moreover, we introduce the recent advance in haploid embryonic stem cells research. Haploid embryonic stem cells maintain haploidy and stable growth over extensive passages, possess the ability to differentiate into all three germ layers in vitro and in vivo, and contribute to the germlines of chimeras when injected into blastocysts. Androgenetic haploid stem cells can also be used in place of sperm to produce fertile progeny after intracytoplasmic injection into mature oocytes. Such characteristics demonstrate that haploid stem cells are a new approach for genetic studies at both the cellular and animal levels and that they are a valuable platform for future small molecule screening.

  16. Differentially pumped spray deposition as a rapid screening tool for organic and perovskite solar cells

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Yen-Sook; Hwang, Kyeongil; Scholes, Fiona H.; Watkins, Scott E.; Kim, Dong-Yu; Vak, Doojin

    2016-01-01

    We report a spray deposition technique as a screening tool for solution processed solar cells. A dual-feed spray nozzle is introduced to deposit donor and acceptor materials separately and to form blended films on substrates in situ. Using a differential pump system with a motorised spray nozzle, the effect of film thickness, solution flow rates and the blend ratio of donor and acceptor materials on device performance can be found in a single experiment. Using this method, polymer solar cells based on poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT):(6,6)-phenyl C61 butyric acid methyl ester (PC61BM) are fabricated with numerous combinations of thicknesses and blend ratios. Results obtained from this technique show that the optimum ratio of materials is consistent with previously reported values confirming this technique is a very useful and effective screening method. This high throughput screening method is also used in a single-feed configuration. In the single-feed mode, methylammonium iodide solution is deposited on lead iodide films to create a photoactive layer of perovskite solar cells. Devices featuring a perovskite layer fabricated by this spray process demonstrated a power conversion efficiencies of up to 7.9%. PMID:26853266

  17. Stem cells as a novel tool for drug screening and treatment of degenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Zuba-Surma, Ewa K; Wojakowski, Wojciech; Madeja, Zbigniew; Ratajczak, Mariusz Z

    2012-01-01

    Degenerative diseases similarly as acute tissue injuries lead to massive cell loss and may cause organ failure of vital organs (e.g., heart, central nervous system). Therefore, they belong to a group of disorders that may significantly benefit from stem cells (SCs)-based therapies. Several stem and progenitor cell populations have already been described as valuable tools for developing therapeutic strategies in regenerative medicine. In particular, pluripotent stem cells (PSCs), including adult-tissue-derived PSCs, neonatal-tissue-derived SCs, embryonic stem cells (ESCs), and recently described induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), are the focus of particular attention because of their capacity to differentiate into all the cell lineages. Although PSCs are predominantly envisioned to be applied for organ regeneration, they may be also successfully employed in drug screening and disease modeling. In particular, adult PSCs and iPSCs derived from patient tissues may not only be a source of cells for autologous therapies but also for individual customized in vitro drug testing and studies on the molecular mechanisms of disease. In this review, we will focus on the potential applications of SCs, especially PSCs i) in regenerative medicine therapies, ii) in studying mechanisms of disease, as well as iii) in drug screening and toxicology tests that are crucial in new drug development. In particular, we will discuss the application of SCs in developing new therapeutic approaches to treat degenerative diseases of the neural system and heart. The advantage of adult PSCs in all the above-mentioned settings is that they can be directly harvested from patient tissues and used not only as a safe non-immunogenic source of cells for therapy but also as tools for personalized drug screening and pharmacological therapies.

  18. A screening tool to prioritize public health risk associated with accidental or deliberate release of chemicals into the atmosphere

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The Chemical Events Working Group of the Global Health Security Initiative has developed a flexible screening tool for chemicals that present a risk when accidentally or deliberately released into the atmosphere. The tool is generic, semi-quantitative, independent of site, situation and scenario, encompasses all chemical hazards (toxicity, flammability and reactivity), and can be easily and quickly implemented by non-subject matter experts using freely available, authoritative information. Public health practitioners and planners can use the screening tool to assist them in directing their activities in each of the five stages of the disaster management cycle. PMID:23517410

  19. A screening tool to prioritize public health risk associated with accidental or deliberate release of chemicals into the atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Blakey, David H; Lafontaine, Marc; Lavigne, Jocelyn; Sokolowski, Danny; Philippe, Jean-Marc; Sapori, Jean-Marc; Biederbick, Walter; Horre, Regine; Marzi, Willi B; Kondo, Hisayoshi; Kuroki, Yumiko; Namera, Akira; Okumura, Tetsu; Yamamoto, Miyako; Yashiki, Mikio; Blain, Peter G; Russell, David R; Cibulsky, Susan M; Jett, David A

    2013-01-01

    The Chemical Events Working Group of the Global Health Security Initiative has developed a flexible screening tool for chemicals that present a risk when accidentally or deliberately released into the atmosphere. The tool is generic, semi-quantitative, independent of site, situation and scenario, encompasses all chemical hazards (toxicity, flammability and reactivity), and can be easily and quickly implemented by non-subject matter experts using freely available, authoritative information. Public health practitioners and planners can use the screening tool to assist them in directing their activities in each of the five stages of the disaster management cycle. PMID:23517410

  20. Thermographic image analysis as a pre-screening tool for the detection of canine bone cancer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Subedi, Samrat; Umbaugh, Scott E.; Fu, Jiyuan; Marino, Dominic J.; Loughin, Catherine A.; Sackman, Joseph

    2014-09-01

    Canine bone cancer is a common type of cancer that grows fast and may be fatal. It usually appears in the limbs which is called "appendicular bone cancer." Diagnostic imaging methods such as X-rays, computed tomography (CT scan), and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are more common methods in bone cancer detection than invasive physical examination such as biopsy. These imaging methods have some disadvantages; including high expense, high dose of radiation, and keeping the patient (canine) motionless during the imaging procedures. This project study identifies the possibility of using thermographic images as a pre-screening tool for diagnosis of bone cancer in dogs. Experiments were performed with thermographic images from 40 dogs exhibiting the disease bone cancer. Experiments were performed with color normalization using temperature data provided by the Long Island Veterinary Specialists. The images were first divided into four groups according to body parts (Elbow/Knee, Full Limb, Shoulder/Hip and Wrist). Each of the groups was then further divided into three sub-groups according to views (Anterior, Lateral and Posterior). Thermographic pattern of normal and abnormal dogs were analyzed using feature extraction and pattern classification tools. Texture features, spectral feature and histogram features were extracted from the thermograms and were used for pattern classification. The best classification success rate in canine bone cancer detection is 90% with sensitivity of 100% and specificity of 80% produced by anterior view of full-limb region with nearest neighbor classification method and normRGB-lum color normalization method. Our results show that it is possible to use thermographic imaging as a pre-screening tool for detection of canine bone cancer.

  1. Inflammation-driven malnutrition: a new screening tool predicts outcome in Crohn's disease.

    PubMed

    Jansen, Irene; Prager, Matthias; Valentini, Luzia; Büning, Carsten

    2016-09-01

    Malnutrition is a frequent feature in Crohn's disease (CD), affects patient outcome and must be recognised. For chronic inflammatory diseases, recent guidelines recommend the development of combined malnutrition and inflammation risk scores. We aimed to design and evaluate a new screening tool that combines both malnutrition and inflammation parameters that might help predict clinical outcome. In a prospective cohort study, we examined fifty-five patients with CD in remission (Crohn's disease activity index (CDAI) <200) at 0 and 6 months. We assessed disease activity (CDAI, Harvey-Bradshaw index), inflammation (C-reactive protein (CRP), faecal calprotectin (FC)), malnutrition (BMI, subjective global assessment (SGA), serum albumin, handgrip strength), body composition (bioelectrical impedance analysis) and administered the newly developed 'Malnutrition Inflammation Risk Tool' (MIRT; containing BMI, unintentional weight loss over 3 months and CRP). All parameters were evaluated regarding their ability to predict disease outcome prospectively at 6 months. At baseline, more than one-third of patients showed elevated inflammatory markers despite clinical remission (36·4 % CRP ≥5 mg/l, 41·5 % FC ≥100 µg/g). Prevalence of malnutrition at baseline according to BMI, SGA and serum albumin was 2-16 %. At 6 months, MIRT significantly predicted outcome in numerous nutritional and clinical parameters (SGA, CD-related flares, hospitalisations and surgeries). In contrast, SGA, handgrip strength, BMI, albumin and body composition had no influence on the clinical course. The newly developed MIRT was found to reliably predict clinical outcome in CD patients. This screening tool might be used to facilitate clinical decision making, including treatment of both inflammation and malnutrition in order to prevent complications.

  2. Inflammation-driven malnutrition: a new screening tool predicts outcome in Crohn's disease.

    PubMed

    Jansen, Irene; Prager, Matthias; Valentini, Luzia; Büning, Carsten

    2016-09-01

    Malnutrition is a frequent feature in Crohn's disease (CD), affects patient outcome and must be recognised. For chronic inflammatory diseases, recent guidelines recommend the development of combined malnutrition and inflammation risk scores. We aimed to design and evaluate a new screening tool that combines both malnutrition and inflammation parameters that might help predict clinical outcome. In a prospective cohort study, we examined fifty-five patients with CD in remission (Crohn's disease activity index (CDAI) <200) at 0 and 6 months. We assessed disease activity (CDAI, Harvey-Bradshaw index), inflammation (C-reactive protein (CRP), faecal calprotectin (FC)), malnutrition (BMI, subjective global assessment (SGA), serum albumin, handgrip strength), body composition (bioelectrical impedance analysis) and administered the newly developed 'Malnutrition Inflammation Risk Tool' (MIRT; containing BMI, unintentional weight loss over 3 months and CRP). All parameters were evaluated regarding their ability to predict disease outcome prospectively at 6 months. At baseline, more than one-third of patients showed elevated inflammatory markers despite clinical remission (36·4 % CRP ≥5 mg/l, 41·5 % FC ≥100 µg/g). Prevalence of malnutrition at baseline according to BMI, SGA and serum albumin was 2-16 %. At 6 months, MIRT significantly predicted outcome in numerous nutritional and clinical parameters (SGA, CD-related flares, hospitalisations and surgeries). In contrast, SGA, handgrip strength, BMI, albumin and body composition had no influence on the clinical course. The newly developed MIRT was found to reliably predict clinical outcome in CD patients. This screening tool might be used to facilitate clinical decision making, including treatment of both inflammation and malnutrition in order to prevent complications. PMID:27546478

  3. Validation of Microtox as a first screening tool for waste classification.

    PubMed

    Weltens, R; Deprez, K; Michiels, L

    2014-12-01

    The Waste Framework Directive (WFD; 2008/98/EG) describes how waste materials are to be classified as hazardous or not. For complex waste materials chemical analyses are often not conclusive and the WFD provides the possibility to assess the hazardous properties by testing on the waste materials directly. As a methodology WFD refers to the protocols described in the CLP regulation (regulation on Classification, Labeling and Packaging of chemicals) but the toxicity tests on mammals are not acceptable for waste materials. The DISCRISET project was initiated to investigate the suitability of alternative toxicity tests that are already in use in pharmaceutical applications, for the toxicological hazard assessment of complex waste materials. Results indicated that Microtox was a good candidate as a first screening test in a tiered approached hazard assessment. This is now further validated in the present study. The toxic responses measured in Microtox were compared to biological responses in other bioassays for both organic and inorganic fractions of the wastes. Both fractions contribute to the toxic load of waste samples. Results show that the Microtox test is indeed a good and practical screening tool for the organic fraction. A screening threshold (ST) of 5 geq/l as the EC50 value in Microtox is proposed as this ST allows to recognize highly toxic samples in the screening test. The data presented here show that the Microtox toxicity response at this ST is not only predictive for acute toxicity in other organisms but also for sub lethal toxic effects of the organic fraction. This limit value has to be further validated. For the inorganic fraction no specific biotest can be recommended as a screening test, but the use of direct toxicity assessment is also preferable for this fraction as metal speciation is an important issue to define the toxic load of elutriate fractions. A battery of 3 tests (Microtox, Daphnia and Algae) for direct toxicity assessment of this

  4. Validation of Microtox as a first screening tool for waste classification.

    PubMed

    Weltens, R; Deprez, K; Michiels, L

    2014-12-01

    The Waste Framework Directive (WFD; 2008/98/EG) describes how waste materials are to be classified as hazardous or not. For complex waste materials chemical analyses are often not conclusive and the WFD provides the possibility to assess the hazardous properties by testing on the waste materials directly. As a methodology WFD refers to the protocols described in the CLP regulation (regulation on Classification, Labeling and Packaging of chemicals) but the toxicity tests on mammals are not acceptable for waste materials. The DISCRISET project was initiated to investigate the suitability of alternative toxicity tests that are already in use in pharmaceutical applications, for the toxicological hazard assessment of complex waste materials. Results indicated that Microtox was a good candidate as a first screening test in a tiered approached hazard assessment. This is now further validated in the present study. The toxic responses measured in Microtox were compared to biological responses in other bioassays for both organic and inorganic fractions of the wastes. Both fractions contribute to the toxic load of waste samples. Results show that the Microtox test is indeed a good and practical screening tool for the organic fraction. A screening threshold (ST) of 5 geq/l as the EC50 value in Microtox is proposed as this ST allows to recognize highly toxic samples in the screening test. The data presented here show that the Microtox toxicity response at this ST is not only predictive for acute toxicity in other organisms but also for sub lethal toxic effects of the organic fraction. This limit value has to be further validated. For the inorganic fraction no specific biotest can be recommended as a screening test, but the use of direct toxicity assessment is also preferable for this fraction as metal speciation is an important issue to define the toxic load of elutriate fractions. A battery of 3 tests (Microtox, Daphnia and Algae) for direct toxicity assessment of this

  5. Teaching child psychiatric assessment skills: Using pediatric mental health screening tools.

    PubMed

    Hargrave, T M; Arthur, M E

    2015-01-01

    This article describes the workshop "Teaching Child Psychiatric Assessment Skills: Using Mental Health Screening Instruments," presented at the 35th Forum for Behavioral Sciences in Family Medicine on 20 September 2014. The goals of the presentation were (1) to teach family medicine behavioral health educators to use both general and problem-specific mental health screening tools (MHSTs) in their work with trainees to help satisfy the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) mandate for behavioral and mental health experience during family medicine residency, (2) to reflect on how MHSTs might be integrated into the flow of family medicine teaching practices, and (3) to exemplify how evidence-based methods of adult education might be used in teaching such content. One general MHST, the Pediatric Symptom Checklist-17 and one problem-specific MHST for each of the four commonest pediatric mental health issues: for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, the Vanderbilt; for Anxiety, the Screen for Childhood Anxiety-Related Emotional Disorders; for Depression, the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 for teens; and for Aggression, the Retrospective-Modified Overt Aggression Scale, were practiced at least twice in the context of a clinical vignette. All of the selected MHSTs are free in the public domain and available for download from the website: www.CAPPCNY.org. Participants were asked to reflect on their own office practice characteristics and consider how MHSTs might be integrated into their systems of care. This workshop could be replicated by others wishing to teach the use of MHSTs in primary care settings or teaching programs.

  6. Ultrasound as a primary screening tool for detecting low birthweight newborns

    PubMed Central

    Goto, Eita

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Background: As low birthweight (i.e., birthweight < 2500 g) is a major determinant of neonatal mortality and morbidity, the pre-delivery detection of low birthweight is clinically advantageous. This study was performed to determine whether ultrasound is suitable for use in primary screening to detect low birthweight newborns. Methods: The primary outcomes included sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative likelihood ratios of ultrasound detection of low birthweight newborns. Ten databases, including PubMed, were searched. All English language studies that provided true- and false-positive and true- and false-negative results regarding the pre-delivery ultrasound detection of low birthweight newborns were eligible for inclusion in the analysis. Study quality was assessed using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies. Bivariate diagnostic meta-analysis was performed and hierarchical summary receiver operating characteristic curves were constructed. Results: Studies of relatively good quality were included in the analysis to evaluate crown–rump length (n = 12); femur length (n = 5); formulas of Campbell, Hadlock, and Shepard (n = 9); and uterine artery blood flow (n = 7). All showed low sensitivity (=0.24–0.58) regardless of specificity (=0.60–0.96). The formulas of Campbell, Hadlock, and Shepard were usable for a confirmation strategy only (positive and negative likelihood ratios = 14.8 and 0.44, respectively), but crown–rump or femur length, and uterine artery blood flow were not usable for an exclusion or confirmation strategy (positive and negative likelihood ratios = 1.4–2.8 and 0.71–0.85, respectively). Conclusions: Primary screening does not have to confirm low birthweight, but should almost always categorize low birthweight as a positive result and exclude normal birthweight. Therefore, ultrasound is not suitable as a primary screening tool to detect low birthweight newborns. PMID

  7. Dynamic balance control in elders: gait initiation assessment as a screening tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, H.; Krebs, D. E.; Wall, C. C. (Principal Investigator)

    1999-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine whether measurements of center of gravity-center of pressure separation (CG-CP moment arm) during gait initiation can differentiate healthy from disabled subjects with sufficient specificity and sensitivity to be useful as a screening test for dynamic balance in elderly patients. SUBJECTS: Three groups of elderly subjects (age, 74.97+/-6.56 yrs): healthy elders (HE, n = 21), disabled elders (DE, n = 20), and elders with vestibular hypofunction (VH, n = 18). DESIGN: Cross-sectional, intact-groups research design. Peak CG-CP moment arm measures how far the subject will tolerate the whole-body CG to deviate from the ground reaction force's CP; it represents dynamic balance control. Screening test cutoff points at 16 to 18 cm peak CG-CP moment arm predicted group membership. RESULTS: The magnitude of peak CG-CP moment arm was significantly greater in HE than in DE and VH subjects (p<.01) and was not different between the DE and VH groups. The peak CG-CP moment arm occurred at the end of single stance phase in all groups. As a screening test, the peak moment arm has greater than 50% sensitivity and specificity to discriminate the HE group from the DE and VH groups with peak CG-CP moment arm cutoff points between 16 and 18 cm. CONCLUSIONS: Examining dynamic balance through the use of the CG-CP moment arm during single stance in gait initiation discriminates between nondisabled and disabled older persons and warrants further investigation as a potential tool to identify people with balance dysfunction.

  8. The utilisation of the MUST nutritional screening tool on vascular surgical wards

    PubMed Central

    Tewari, Nilanjana; Rodrigues, Jeremy; Bothamley, Lydia; Altaf, Nishath; Awad, Sherif

    2013-01-01

    Whilst malnutrition is prevalent in approximately 40% of general surgical patients, the prevalence of malnutrition and nutritional screening practices amongst vascular patients remain unknown. The Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (MUST) is recommended for risk screening and provides 3 scores for risk classification: 0=low risk, 1=intermediate risk, 2=high risk. The aim of this preliminary study was to evaluate the use of MUST on vascular wards. This prospective study was undertaken in a tertiary referral vascular unit in the UK. Patient demographics, utilisation of MUST by nursing staff (N-MUST) and referral to nutritional support teams (NST) were studied. When MUST was not completed by nursing staff, the study team (S-MUST) performed it. Fifty-three patients, median (interquartile range, IQR) age 67 (59-75) years were initially studied. For N-MUST: Overall MUST score was recorded in 18/25 (72%) patients, of whom 1 (4%) scored 2, whilst the remainder scored 0. For S-MUST: Overall MUST scores were recorded in 28 patients, MUST=0 in 75% and ≥2 in 21%. An educational session on use of MUST was delivered to nursing staff, as well as a Trust-wide educational initiative to improve assessment of nutritional status and, after a 2-month period, the study was repeated. The second cohort comprised forty-two patients, median (IQR) age 72 (64–79) years. For N-MUST: Overall MUST score was recorded in 37/40 (93%) patients, of whom 3 (8%) scored ≥2. For S-MUST: Overall MUST scores were recorded in 2 patients, MUST = 0 in 67% and ≥2 in 33%. Despite the ease of use of MUST, it was under-utilised on vascular wards. However, following provision of a dedicated educational programme to ward nursing staff, utilisation of MUST for risk scoring patients on admission increased to over 90%. PMID:26734198

  9. Glycated hemoglobin cannot yet be proposed as a screening tool for cystic fibrosis related diabetes.

    PubMed

    Boudreau, Valérie; Coriati, Adèle; Desjardins, Katherine; Rabasa-Lhoret, Rémi

    2016-03-01

    With improved life expectancy of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients, CF-related diabetes (CFRD) has become a major complication. The oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) is the standard test to detect it. However, the use of OGTT is controversial, in addition to being a burden for patients and the treatment team. Research to find alternative ways of testing is ongoing. While some propose that glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) may be an effective alternative, our past results suggest otherwise. A new analysis involving the OGTT and HbA1c values of 207 patients, between 2004 and 2015, proposes that the threshold of a lower value of HbA1c of ≥5.8%(39.9 mmol/mol) gives a sensitivity of 68.2% and a specificity of 60.5%. With such sensitivity to identify patients in need of an OGTT, 31.8% of CFRD diagnosis would be missed if the suggested HbA1c value of ≥5.8% was used as a screening tool to identify patients in need of OGTTs. Considering our results, we believe the HbA1c does not possess the characteristics of a suitable screening test for CFRD. PMID:26905501

  10. Pulmonary embolism in Bradford, UK: role of end-tidal CO2 as a screening tool.

    PubMed

    Riaz, Imad; Jacob, Badie

    2014-04-01

    End-tidal CO2 (ETCO2) can represent dead space ventilation. The authors aimed to define the optimum ETCO2 to conclusively exclude a pulmonary embolic event. One hundred consecutive patients with suspected pulmonary embolisms (PEs) were enrolled over 6 months in 2012. Symptoms, demographic date, Wells' score, D-dimer levels and the gold standard computed tomography pulmonary angiogram (CTPA) results were collated for analysis. ETCO2 was measured within 24 hours of presentation in all 100 patients. Patient ages ranged from 18 years to 93 years. PE was diagnosed in 38% of cases. The average ETCO2 in patients with a positive CTPA was 3.35 kPa (range 2.4-4.2 kPa, SD 0.50). The average ETCO2 in patients without a PE was 4.41 kPa (range 1.3-6.6 kPa, SD 1.10). All patients positive for a PE obtained an ETCO2 <4.3 kPa (32.3 mmHg). This point (4.3 kPa) had a sensitivity and specificity (100% and 68% respectively), with a negative predictive value of 100% and positive predictive value of 66%. ETCO2 may reliably be used to screen and exclude patients with suspected PEs. If used in combination with D-dimer with clinical probability as a screening tool, CTPA will be required in only a minority of patients.

  11. Implicit Association Test: a possible tool for screening patients for orthognathic surgery.

    PubMed

    Yu, Dedong; Fang, Bing; Wang, Fang; Wang, Xudong; Zhang, Wenbin; Dai, Jiewen; Shen, Steve G F

    2013-08-01

    In orthognathic surgery, many serious medical disputes and postsurgical dissatisfactions are not caused by the doctors' reasons, but due to the patients' psychological problems. These adverse events obsess not only surgeons, but also patients to a great extent. An effective method is expected to screen patients for orthognathic surgery. So far, most selecting approaches in orthognathic surgery are based on explicit cognition, which inevitably include the following faults: patients' intentional concealment, uncertain errors, and imprecise subjective judgment from the doctors. However, these errors can be avoided by the tests based on implicit cognition, i.e., Implicit Association Test (IAT). Avoiding the faults of explicit cognition, IAT is an objective, quantitative, and easily applicable mental measurement method. We hypothesized that all the patients for orthognathic purpose should have an IAT screening before treatment. By IAT method, the right patients for orthognathic surgery can be picked out. As a result, postoperative dissatisfaction, medical dispute, and even violent conflict can be avoided to a great extent. To the best of our knowledge, there is no relevant report on the use of IAT as a tool to select the right orthognathic patients to avoid postsurgical dissatisfaction, medical disputes and violent conflict events.

  12. The human gut microbiome as a screening tool for colorectal cancer.

    PubMed

    Zackular, Joseph P; Rogers, Mary A M; Ruffin, Mack T; Schloss, Patrick D

    2014-11-01

    Recent studies have suggested that the gut microbiome may be an important factor in the development of colorectal cancer. Abnormalities in the gut microbiome have been reported in patients with colorectal cancer; however, this microbial community has not been explored as a potential screen for early-stage disease. We characterized the gut microbiome in patients from three clinical groups representing the stages of colorectal cancer development: healthy, adenoma, and carcinoma. Analysis of the gut microbiome from stool samples revealed both an enrichment and depletion of several bacterial populations associated with adenomas and carcinomas. Combined with known clinical risk factors of colorectal cancer (e.g., BMI, age, race), data from the gut microbiome significantly improved the ability to differentiate between healthy, adenoma, and carcinoma clinical groups relative to risk factors alone. Using Bayesian methods, we determined that using gut microbiome data as a screening tool improved the pretest to posttest probability of adenoma more than 50-fold. For example, the pretest probability in a 65-year-old was 0.17% and, after using the microbiome data, this increased to 10.67% (1 in 9 chance of having an adenoma). Taken together, the results of our study demonstrate the feasibility of using the composition of the gut microbiome to detect the presence of precancerous and cancerous lesions. Furthermore, these results support the need for more cross-sectional studies with diverse populations and linkage to other stool markers, dietary data, and personal health information.

  13. Evaluation of a novel portable x-ray fluorescence screening tool for detection of arsenic exposure.

    PubMed

    McIver, David J; VanLeeuwen, John A; Knafla, Anthony L; Campbell, Jillian A; Alexander, Kevin M; Gherase, Mihai R; Guernsey, Judith R; Fleming, David E B

    2015-12-01

    A new portable x-ray fluorescence (XRF) screening tool was evaluated for its effectiveness in arsenic (As) quantification in human finger and toe nails ([Formula: see text]). Nail samples were measured for total As concentration by XRF and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Using concordance correlation coefficient (CCC), kappa, diagnostic sensitivity (Sn) and specificity (Sp), and linear regression analyses, the concentration of As measured by XRF was compared to ICP-MS. The CCC peaked for scaled values of fingernail samples, at 0.424 (95% CI: 0.065-0.784). The largest kappa value, 0.400 (95% CI:  -0.282-1.000), was found at a 1.3 μg g(-1) cut-off concentration, for fingernails only, and the largest kappa at a clinically relevant cut-off concentration of 1.0 μg g(-1) was 0.237 (95% CI:  -0.068-0.543), again in fingernails. Analyses generally showed excellent XRF Sn (up to 100%, 95% CI: 48-100%), but low Sp (up to 30% for the same analysis, 95% CI: 14-50%). Portable XRF shows some potential for use as a screening tool with fingernail samples. The difference between XRF and ICP-MS measurements decreased as sample mass increased to 30 mg. While this novel method of As detection in nails has shown relatively high agreement in some scenarios, this portable XRF is not currently considered suitable as a substitute for ICP-MS. PMID:26536141

  14. Evaluation of a novel portable x-ray fluorescence screening tool for detection of arsenic exposure.

    PubMed

    McIver, David J; VanLeeuwen, John A; Knafla, Anthony L; Campbell, Jillian A; Alexander, Kevin M; Gherase, Mihai R; Guernsey, Judith R; Fleming, David E B

    2015-12-01

    A new portable x-ray fluorescence (XRF) screening tool was evaluated for its effectiveness in arsenic (As) quantification in human finger and toe nails ([Formula: see text]). Nail samples were measured for total As concentration by XRF and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Using concordance correlation coefficient (CCC), kappa, diagnostic sensitivity (Sn) and specificity (Sp), and linear regression analyses, the concentration of As measured by XRF was compared to ICP-MS. The CCC peaked for scaled values of fingernail samples, at 0.424 (95% CI: 0.065-0.784). The largest kappa value, 0.400 (95% CI:  -0.282-1.000), was found at a 1.3 μg g(-1) cut-off concentration, for fingernails only, and the largest kappa at a clinically relevant cut-off concentration of 1.0 μg g(-1) was 0.237 (95% CI:  -0.068-0.543), again in fingernails. Analyses generally showed excellent XRF Sn (up to 100%, 95% CI: 48-100%), but low Sp (up to 30% for the same analysis, 95% CI: 14-50%). Portable XRF shows some potential for use as a screening tool with fingernail samples. The difference between XRF and ICP-MS measurements decreased as sample mass increased to 30 mg. While this novel method of As detection in nails has shown relatively high agreement in some scenarios, this portable XRF is not currently considered suitable as a substitute for ICP-MS.

  15. Right Ventricular Apical Flattening as an Echocardiographic Screening Tool for Right Ventricular Enlargement.

    PubMed

    Buddhe, Sujatha; Ferguson, Mark; Arya, Bhawna; Soriano, Brian D

    2016-03-01

    Right ventricular dilation is a common complication after tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) repair. Traditional echocardiographic assessments are imprecise due to the RV's location and complex geometry. We propose a novel echocardiographic measurement: RV apical flattening (RVAF) as a screening tool to help identify subjects with severe RV dilation. Patients with repaired TOF who had both echocardiograms and CMR's within 6-month interval at our institution were included in the study. The RVAF was measured in the four-chamber echocardiographic view as the minor length of RV cavity at the level of RV apical endocardium. Subjects were divided into two groups (group I: RVEDVi ≥ 150 ml/m(2) and group II; RVEDVi < 150 ml/m(2)). Echocardiogram and CMR data were compared between groups. A total of 75 subjects were included in the study. Mean age was 12.8 ± 3.6 years. Group I had 36 subjects, and group II had 39 subjects. The mean RVAF was significantly higher in group I (2.7 ± 0.5 cm) compared with group II (1.7 ± 0.4 cm; p < 0.001). There was significant correlation between RVAF and RVEDVi (r = 0.81; p < 0.001). By ROC analysis, an RVAF cutoff value of 2.0 cm had 94 % sensitivity and 77 % specificity in identifying severe RV dilation (area under the curve 0.95). RVAF is a simple and effective echocardiographic screening tool to help identify severe RV dilation. In conjunction with other 2D echocardiographic parameters, this technique would help further refine echocardiography-guided patient selection for timing of CMR and pulmonary valve replacement.

  16. The modified card agglutination test: an accurate tool for detecting anaplasmosis in Columbian black-tailed deer.

    PubMed

    Howarth, A; Hokama, Y; Amerault, T E

    1976-07-01

    Inoculation of susceptible calves confirmed that the modified card agglutination test accurately detected the anaplasmosis infection status of each of 35 Columbian black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus). Anaplasma marginale, and specific antibodies, were demonstrated only in calves which received blood from deer that were positive by the card test. The modified card agglutination testing of deer serum was performed in the manner recommended for testing cattle serum with bovine-origin antigen and bovine serum factor.

  17. Screening for Frailty in Hospitalized Older Adults: Reliability and Feasibility of the Maastricht Frailty Screening Tool for Hospitalized Patients (MFST-HP).

    PubMed

    Warnier, Ron M J; van Rossum, Erik; van Leendert, Jannic A A; Pijls, Noor A T; Mulder, Wubbo J; Schols, Jos M G A; Kempen, Gertrudis I J M

    2016-09-01

    As nurses in hospitals are confronted with increasing numbers of older patients, their geriatric nursing skills and knowledge must be integrated into daily clinical practice. Early risk identification via screening tools may help improve geriatric care. To reduce the assessment burden of nurses, the Maastricht Frailty Screening Tool for Hospitalized Patients (MFST-HP) was developed. The aim of the current study was to explore aspects of reliability, validity, and feasibility of the MFST-HP. Intrarater reliability was assessed by measuring patients two times within 24 hours. Interrater reliability was assessed by having patients screened by two different nurses. Construct validity was studied by the associations between the MFST-HP scores and age and comorbidities. Intraclass correlation coefficients for both intra- and interrater reliability were good (>0.93). Older patients and those with more comorbidity showed higher scores on the MFST-HP compared to younger patients and those with less comorbidity. The MFST-HP shows promise as a reliable, valid, and feasible screening tool for frailty among hospitalized older adults. [Res Gerontol Nurs. 2016; 9(5):243-251.]. PMID:27637112

  18. Simultaneous measurement in mass and mass/mass mode for accurate qualitative and quantitative screening analysis of pharmaceuticals in river water.

    PubMed

    Martínez Bueno, M J; Ulaszewska, Maria M; Gomez, M J; Hernando, M D; Fernández-Alba, A R

    2012-09-21

    A new approach for the analysis of pharmaceuticals (target and non-target) in water by LC-QTOF-MS is described in this work. The study has been designed to assess the performance of the simultaneous quantitative screening of target compounds, and the qualitative analysis of non-target analytes, in just one run. The features of accurate mass full scan mass spectrometry together with high MS/MS spectral acquisition rates - by means of information dependent acquisition (IDA) - have demonstrated their potential application in this work. Applying this analytical strategy, an identification procedure is presented based on library searching for compounds which were not included a priori in the analytical method as target compounds, thus allowing their characterization by data processing of accurate mass measurements in MS and MS/MS mode. The non-target compounds identified in river water samples were ketorolac, trazodone, fluconazole, metformin and venlafaxine. Simultaneously, this strategy allowed for the identification of other compounds which were not included in the library by screening the highest intensity peaks detected in the samples and by analysis of the full scan TOF-MS, isotope pattern and MS/MS spectra - the example of loratadine (histaminergic) is described. The group of drugs of abuse selected as target compounds for evaluation included analgesics, opioids and psychostimulants. Satisfactory results regarding sensitivity and linearity of the developed method were obtained. Limits of detection for the selected target compounds were from 0.003 to 0.01 μg/L and 0.01 to 0.5 μg/L, in MS and MS/MS mode, respectively - by direct sample injection of 100 μL.

  19. Structural and functional screening in human induced-pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes accurately identifies cardiotoxicity of multiple drug types

    SciTech Connect

    Doherty, Kimberly R. Talbert, Dominique R.; Trusk, Patricia B.; Moran, Diarmuid M.; Shell, Scott A.; Bacus, Sarah

    2015-05-15

    Safety pharmacology studies that evaluate new drug entities for potential cardiac liability remain a critical component of drug development. Current studies have shown that in vitro tests utilizing human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPS-CM) may be beneficial for preclinical risk evaluation. We recently demonstrated that an in vitro multi-parameter test panel assessing overall cardiac health and function could accurately reflect the associated clinical cardiotoxicity of 4 FDA-approved targeted oncology agents using hiPS-CM. The present studies expand upon this initial observation to assess whether this in vitro screen could detect cardiotoxicity across multiple drug classes with known clinical cardiac risks. Thus, 24 drugs were examined for their effect on both structural (viability, reactive oxygen species generation, lipid formation, troponin secretion) and functional (beating activity) endpoints in hiPS-CM. Using this screen, the cardiac-safe drugs showed no effects on any of the tests in our panel. However, 16 of 18 compounds with known clinical cardiac risk showed drug-induced changes in hiPS-CM by at least one method. Moreover, when taking into account the Cmax values, these 16 compounds could be further classified depending on whether the effects were structural, functional, or both. Overall, the most sensitive test assessed cardiac beating using the xCELLigence platform (88.9%) while the structural endpoints provided additional insight into the mechanism of cardiotoxicity for several drugs. These studies show that a multi-parameter approach examining both cardiac cell health and function in hiPS-CM provides a comprehensive and robust assessment that can aid in the determination of potential cardiac liability. - Highlights: • 24 drugs were tested for cardiac liability using an in vitro multi-parameter screen. • Changes in beating activity were the most sensitive in predicting cardiac risk. • Structural effects add in

  20. Development of the Water-Analysis Screening Tool Used in the Initial Screening for the Pennsylvania State Water Plan Update of 2008

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stuckey, Marla H.

    2008-01-01

    The Water Resources Planning Act, Act 220 of 2002, requires the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PaDEP) to update the State Water Plan by 2008. As part of this update, a water-analysis screening tool (WAST) was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the PaDEP, to provide assistance to the state in the identification of critical water-planning areas. The WAST has two primary inputs: net withdrawals and the initial screening criteria. A comprehensive water-use database that includes data from registration, estimation, discharge monitoring reports, mining data, and other sources was developed as input into the WAST. Water use in the following categories was estimated using water-use factors: residential, industrial, commercial, agriculture, and golf courses. A percentage of the 7-day, 10-year low flow is used for the initial screenings using the WAST to identify potential critical water-planning areas. This quantity, or initial screening criteria, is 50 percent of the 7-day, 10-year low flow for most streams. Using a basic water-balance equation, a screening indicator is calculated that indicates the potential influences of net withdrawals on aquatic-resource uses for watersheds generally larger than 15 square miles. Points representing outlets of these watersheds are colored-coded within the WAST to show the screening criteria for each watershed.

  1. 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.

  2. Validation analysis of a geriatric dehydration screening tool in community-dwelling and institutionalized elderly people.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Susana; Silva, Joana; Severo, Milton; Inácio, Cátia; Padrão, Patrícia; Lopes, Carla; Carvalho, Joana; do Carmo, Isabel; Moreira, Pedro

    2015-03-02

    Dehydration is common among elderly people. The aim of this study was to perform validation analysis of a geriatric dehydration-screening tool (DST) in the assessment of hydration status in elderly people. This tool was based on the DST proposed by Vivanti et al., which is composed by 11 items (four physical signs of dehydration and seven questions about thirst sensation, pain and mobility), with four questions extra about drinking habits. The resulting questionnaire was evaluated in a convenience sample comprising institutionalized (n=29) and community-dwelling (n=74) elderly people. Urinary parameters were assessed (24-h urine osmolality and volume) and free water reserve (FWR) was calculated. Exploratory factor analysis was used to evaluate the scale's dimensionality and Cronbach's alpha was used to measure the reliability of each subscale. Construct's validity was tested using linear regression to estimate the association between scores in each dimension and urinary parameters. Two factors emerged from factor analysis, which were named "Hydration Score" and "Pain Score", and both subscales showed acceptable reliabilities. The "Hydration Score" was negatively associated with 24-h urine osmolality in community-dwelling; and the "Pain Score" was negatively associated with 24-h urine osmolality, and positively associated with 24-h urine volume and FWR in institutionalized elderly people.

  3. 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.

  4. Combining qualitative and quantitative methods to analyze serious games outcomes: A pilot study for a new cognitive screening tool.

    PubMed

    Vallejo, Vanessa; Mitache, Andrei V; Tarnanas, Ioannis; Muri, Rene; Mosimann, Urs P; Nef, Tobias

    2015-08-01

    Computer games for a serious purpose - so called serious games can provide additional information for the screening and diagnosis of cognitive impairment. Moreover, they have the advantage of being an ecological tool by involving daily living tasks. However, there is a need for better comprehensive designs regarding the acceptance of this technology, as the target population is older adults that are not used to interact with novel technologies. Moreover given the complexity of the diagnosis and the need for precise assessment, an evaluation of the best approach to analyze the performance data is required. The present study examines the usability of a new screening tool and proposes several new outlines for data analysis.

  5. Development of a Brief Screening Tool for Women’s Mental Health Assessment in Refugee Settings: A Psychometric Evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Bell, Sue Anne; Lori, Jody; Redman, Richard; Seng, Julia

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose The detection of common mental disorders in humanitarian crisis settings requires a screening tool that is feasible to use as well as sensitive and specific. The Self-Report Questionnaire, developed by the World Health Organization in 1994 to detect presence or absence of common mental health disorders, has frequently been used among conflict-affected and refugee populations. Our goal was to identify a highly predictive and reliable subset of items to serve as a screening tool that can be used in busy, over-crowded, and low-resource primary health care settings to identify women who need mental health attention. Methods We analyzed the responses on a version of the Self-Report Questionnaire expanded to include two suicidality items from 810 displaced women living in refugee camps in Rwanda. Screening items were selected and evaluated for predictive ability using logistic regression in a cross-validation process, sensitivity and specificity using receiver operating characteristic curve analysis, and internal consistency analysis. Results A five-item screening tool resulted. Those items are "Do you feel unhappy?", Do you feel easily nervous, tense, or worried?", "Have you lost interest in things?", "Do you have trouble thinking clearly?" and "Has the thought of ending your life been on your mind?" Conclusion The Self-Report Questionnaire-5 may be an important tool for identifying common mental disorders as well as suicide ideation and behaviors when assessing mental health among women in crisis situations. Further evaluation of this tool is warranted. PMID:25892280

  6. Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Cumulative Environmental Health Impacts in California: Evidence From a Statewide Environmental Justice Screening Tool (CalEnviroScreen 1.1)

    PubMed Central

    Faust, John; August, Laura Meehan; Cendak, Rose; Wieland, Walker; Alexeeff, George

    2015-01-01

    Objectives. We used an environmental justice screening tool (CalEnviroScreen 1.1) to compare the distribution of environmental hazards and vulnerable populations across California communities. Methods. CalEnviroScreen 1.1 combines 17 indicators created from 2004 to 2013 publicly available data into a relative cumulative impact score. We compared cumulative impact scores across California zip codes on the basis of their location, urban or rural character, and racial/ethnic makeup. We used a concentration index to evaluate which indicators were most unequally distributed with respect to race/ethnicity and poverty. Results. The unadjusted odds of living in one of the 10% most affected zip codes were 6.2, 5.8, 1.9, 1.8, and 1.6 times greater for Hispanics, African Americans, Native Americans, Asian/Pacific Islanders, and other or multiracial individuals, respectively, than for non-Hispanic Whites. Environmental hazards were more regressively distributed with respect to race/ethnicity than poverty, with pesticide use and toxic chemical releases being the most unequal. Conclusions. Environmental health hazards disproportionately burden communities of color in California. Efforts to reduce disparities in pollution burden can use simple screening tools to prioritize areas for action. PMID:26378826

  7. ECG is an inefficient screening-tool for left ventricular hypertrophy in normotensive African children population

    PubMed Central

    Creta, Antonio; Campanale, Cosimo Marco; Fittipaldi, Mario; Giorgino, Riccardo; Quintarelli, Fabio; Satriano, Umberto; Cruciani, Alessandro; Antinolfi, Vincenzo; Di Berardino, Stefano; Costanzo, Davide; Bettini, Ranieri; Mangiameli, Giuseppe; Caricato, Marco; Mottini, Giovanni

    2016-01-01

    Background Left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) is a marker of pediatric hypertension and predicts development of cardiovascular events. Electrocardiography (ECG) screening is used in pediatrics to detect LVH thanks to major accessibility, reproducibility and easy to use compared to transthoracic echocardiography (TTE), that remains the standard technique. Several diseases were previously investigated, but no data exists regarding our study population. The aim of our study was to evaluate the relationship between electrocardiographic and echocardiographic criteria of LVH in normotensive African children. Methods We studied 313 children (mean age 7,8 ± 3 yo), in north-Madagascar. They underwent ECG and TTE. Sokolow-Lyon index was calculated to identify ECG-LVH (>35 mm). Left ventricle mass (LVM) with TTE was calculated and indexed by height2.7 (LVMI2.7) and weight (LVMIw). We report the prevalence of TTE-LVH using three methods: (1) calculating percentiles age- and sex- specific with values >95th percentile identifying LVH; (2) LVMI2.7 >51 g/m2.7; (3) LVMIw >3.4 g/weight. Results 40 (13%) children showed LVMI values >95th percentile, 24 children (8%) an LVMI2.7 >51 g/m2.7 while 19 children (6%) an LVMIw >3.4 g/kg. LVH-ECG by Sokolow-Lyon index was present in five, three and three children respectively, with poor values of sensitivity (ranging from 13 to 16%), positive predictive value (from 11 to 18%) and high values of specificity (up to 92%). The effects of anthropometrics parameters on Sokolow-Lyon were analyzed and showed poor correlation. Conclusion ECG is a poor screening test for detecting LVH in children. In clinical practice, TTE remains the only tool to be used to exclude LVH.

  8. Stereo tests as a screening tool for strabismus: which is the best choice?

    PubMed Central

    Ancona, Chiara; Stoppani, Monica; Odazio, Veronica; La Spina, Carlo; Corradetti, Giulia; Bandello, Francesco

    2014-01-01

    Purpose To compare four stereo tests (Lang I, Lang II, Titmus, and TNO) and assess their effectiveness. The main focus of this study is to identify the most useful stereo test as a challenging tool in the screening of strabismus. Patients and methods A total of 143 Caucasian subjects, 74 males (52%) and 69 females (48%), aged between 4 years and 78 years (mean age 19.09±15.12 years) were examined at our Strabismus Service (Scientific Institute San Raffaele Hospital, Milan, Italy) and included in this observational cross-sectional study. Subjects recruited in this study were either affected by strabismus, including microstrabismic patients, or healthy volunteers. Subjects affected by ophthalmological diseases, other than strabismus, were excluded. All patients underwent both ophthalmological and orthoptic examination, including stereo tests, Hirschberg Corneal Light Reflex Test, Worth Four-Dot Test, the 4 Prism Diopter Base-Out Test, Cover Testing, Bruckner Test, visual acuity, automated refraction under 1% tropicamide cycloplegia and thereafter, posterior pole evaluation. Results All data were processed using the IBM SPSS Statistics, Version 2.0, to perform all statistical calculations. The main finding of this study is that Lang I stereo test achieved the highest sensitivity (89.8%) and specificity (95.2%) in detecting strabismus, including microstrabismus as well, compared to all the other stereoacuity tests. Furthermore, Lang I is the stereo test with the highest positive predictive value and negative predictive value, both greater than 90%. Conclusion The stereo test with the highest sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value is Lang I. These results suggest its applicability as a screening test for strabismus in people older than 4 years. PMID:25419114

  9. ECG is an inefficient screening-tool for left ventricular hypertrophy in normotensive African children population

    PubMed Central

    Creta, Antonio; Campanale, Cosimo Marco; Fittipaldi, Mario; Giorgino, Riccardo; Quintarelli, Fabio; Satriano, Umberto; Cruciani, Alessandro; Antinolfi, Vincenzo; Di Berardino, Stefano; Costanzo, Davide; Bettini, Ranieri; Mangiameli, Giuseppe; Caricato, Marco; Mottini, Giovanni

    2016-01-01

    Background Left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) is a marker of pediatric hypertension and predicts development of cardiovascular events. Electrocardiography (ECG) screening is used in pediatrics to detect LVH thanks to major accessibility, reproducibility and easy to use compared to transthoracic echocardiography (TTE), that remains the standard technique. Several diseases were previously investigated, but no data exists regarding our study population. The aim of our study was to evaluate the relationship between electrocardiographic and echocardiographic criteria of LVH in normotensive African children. Methods We studied 313 children (mean age 7,8 ± 3 yo), in north-Madagascar. They underwent ECG and TTE. Sokolow-Lyon index was calculated to identify ECG-LVH (>35 mm). Left ventricle mass (LVM) with TTE was calculated and indexed by height2.7 (LVMI2.7) and weight (LVMIw). We report the prevalence of TTE-LVH using three methods: (1) calculating percentiles age- and sex- specific with values >95th percentile identifying LVH; (2) LVMI2.7 >51 g/m2.7; (3) LVMIw >3.4 g/weight. Results 40 (13%) children showed LVMI values >95th percentile, 24 children (8%) an LVMI2.7 >51 g/m2.7 while 19 children (6%) an LVMIw >3.4 g/kg. LVH-ECG by Sokolow-Lyon index was present in five, three and three children respectively, with poor values of sensitivity (ranging from 13 to 16%), positive predictive value (from 11 to 18%) and high values of specificity (up to 92%). The effects of anthropometrics parameters on Sokolow-Lyon were analyzed and showed poor correlation. Conclusion ECG is a poor screening test for detecting LVH in children. In clinical practice, TTE remains the only tool to be used to exclude LVH. PMID:27651998

  10. Evaluation of fetal echocardiography as a routine antenatal screening tool for detection of congenital heart disease

    PubMed Central

    Nayak, Krishnananda; Shetty, Ranjan; Narayan, Pratap Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Background Fetal echocardiography plays a pivotal role in identifying the congenital heart defects (CHDs) in utero. Though foetal echocardiography is mostly reserved for high risk pregnant women, its role as a routine prenatal screening tool still needs to be defined. Performing foetal echocardiography based on only these indications can lead to a significant numbers of CHD cases going undetected who will be deprived of further management leading to increased early neonatal mortalities. The aim of this study is to assess the incidence of CHDs by fetal echocardiography in an unselected population of pregnant women in comparison with pregnant women with conventional high risk factors for CHD. Methods This study enrolled consecutive pregnant women who attended antenatal clinic between 2008 and 2012 in a tertiary care hospital. These pregnant women were categorized into two groups: high risk group included pregnant women with traditional risk factors for CHD as laid down by Pediatric Council of the American Society of Echocardiography and low risk group. Detailed fetal 2 D echocardiography was done. Results A total of 1,280 pregnant women were included in study. The 118 women were categorized as the high risk group while remaining 1,162 were included in the low risk group. Twenty six cases of CHDs were detected based on abnormal foetal echocardiography (20.3 per 1,000). Two of the 26 cases of CHD occurred in high risk group whereas the remaining 24 occurred in low risk pregnancy. The difference in the incidence of CHDs between the two groups was not significant statistically (P=0.76). Conclusions Our study shows no difference in incidence of CHDs between pregnancies associated with high risk factors compared to low risk pregnancies. So we advocate foetal echocardiography should be included as a part of routine antenatal screening and all pregnant women irrespective of risk factors for CHDs. PMID:26885491

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. Virtual Screening of Phytochemicals to Novel Target (HAT) Rtt109 in Pneumocystis Jirovecii using Bioinformatics Tools

    PubMed Central

    Adithavarman, Abhinand Ponneri; Dakshinamoorthi, Anusha; David, Darling Chellathai; Ragunath, Padmavathi Kannan

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Pneumocystis jirovecii is a fungus that causes Pneumocystis pneumonia in HIV and other immunosuppressed patients. Treatment of Pneumocystis pneumonia with the currently available antifungals is challenging and associated with considerable adverse effects. There is a need to develop drugs against novel targets with minimal human toxicities. Histone Acetyl Transferase (HAT) Rtt109 is a potential therapeutic target in Pneumocystis jirovecii species. HAT is linked to transcription and is required to acetylate conserved lysine residues on histone proteins by transferring an acetyl group from acetyl CoA to form e-N-acetyl lysine. Therefore, inhibitors of HAT can be useful therapeutic options in Pneumocystis pneumonia. Aim To screen phytochemicals against (HAT) Rtt109 using bioinformatics tool. Materials and Methods The tertiary structure of Pneumocystis jirovecii (HAT) Rtt109 was modeled by Homology Modeling. The ideal template for modeling was obtained by performing Psi BLAST of the protein sequence. Rtt109-AcCoA/Vps75 protein from Saccharomyces cerevisiae (PDB structure 3Q35) was chosen as the template. The target protein was modeled using Swiss Modeler and validated using Ramachandran plot and Errat 2. Comprehensive text mining was performed to identify phytochemical compounds with antipneumonia and fungicidal properties and these compounds were filtered based on Lipinski’s Rule of 5. The chosen compounds were subjected to virtual screening against the target protein (HAT) Rtt109 using Molegro Virtual Docker 4.5. Osiris Property Explorer and Open Tox Server were used to predict ADME-T properties of the chosen phytochemicals. Results Tertiary structure model of HAT Rtt 109 had a ProSA score of -6.57 and Errat 2 score of 87.34. Structure validation analysis by Ramachandran plot for the model revealed 97% of amino acids were in the favoured region. Of all the phytochemicals subjected to virtual screening against the target protein (HAT) Rtt109, baicalin

  14. OPTIMAL WELL LOCATOR (OWL): A SCREENING TOOL FOR EVALUATING LOCATIONS OF MONITORING WELLS: USER'S GUIDE VERSION 1.2

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Optimal Well Locator ( OWL) program was designed and developed by USEPA to be a screening tool to evaluate and optimize the placement of wells in long term monitoring networks at small sites. The first objective of the OWL program is to allow the user to visualize the change ...

  15. The Dimensionality of Language Ability in Four-Year-Olds: Construct Validation of a Language Screening Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klem, Marianne; Gustafsson, Jan-Eric; Hagtvet, Bente

    2015-01-01

    The Norwegian government recommends a systematic language assessment of all four-year-olds as part of the general health surveillance program for the purpose of identifying children at risk of language delay. This study aimed to investigate the construct validity of the recommended language screening tool called LANGUAGE4 [SPRÅK4] by first…

  16. A Comparison of Five Brief Screening Tools for HIV-Associated Neurocognitive Disorders in the USA and South Africa.

    PubMed

    Joska, J A; Witten, J; Thomas, K G; Robertson, C; Casson-Crook, M; Roosa, H; Creighton, J; Lyons, J; McArthur, J; Sacktor, N C

    2016-08-01

    Screening for HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) is important to improve clinical outcomes. We compared the diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of the mini-mental state examination, International HIV dementia scale (IHDS), Montreal cognitive assessment, Simioni symptom questionnaire and cognitive assessment tool-rapid version (CAT-rapid) to a gold standard neuropsychological battery. Antiretroviral-experienced participants from Cape Town, South Africa, and Baltimore, USA, were recruited. The sensitivity and specificity of the five tools, as well as those of the combined IHDS and CAT-rapid, were established using 2 × 2 contingency tables and ROC analysis. More than a third (65165) had symptomatic HAND. In detecting HIV-D, the CAT-Rapid had good sensitivity (94 %) and weak specificity (52 %) (cut-point ≤10), while the IHDS showed fair sensitivity (68 %) and good specificity (86 %) (cut-point ≤10). The combined IHDS and CAT-rapid showed excellent sensitivity and specificity for HIV-D at a cut-off score of ≤16 (out of 20; 89 and 82 %). No tool was adequate in screening for any HAND. The combination IHDS and CAT-rapid tool appears to be a good screener for HIV-D but is only fairly sensitive and poorly specific in screening for any HAND. Screening for milder forms of HAND continues to be a clinical challenge.

  17. Structural and functional screening in human induced-pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes accurately identifies cardiotoxicity of multiple drug types.

    PubMed

    Doherty, Kimberly R; Talbert, Dominique R; Trusk, Patricia B; Moran, Diarmuid M; Shell, Scott A; Bacus, Sarah

    2015-05-15

    Safety pharmacology studies that evaluate new drug entities for potential cardiac liability remain a critical component of drug development. Current studies have shown that in vitro tests utilizing human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPS-CM) may be beneficial for preclinical risk evaluation. We recently demonstrated that an in vitro multi-parameter test panel assessing overall cardiac health and function could accurately reflect the associated clinical cardiotoxicity of 4 FDA-approved targeted oncology agents using hiPS-CM. The present studies expand upon this initial observation to assess whether this in vitro screen could detect cardiotoxicity across multiple drug classes with known clinical cardiac risks. Thus, 24 drugs were examined for their effect on both structural (viability, reactive oxygen species generation, lipid formation, troponin secretion) and functional (beating activity) endpoints in hiPS-CM. Using this screen, the cardiac-safe drugs showed no effects on any of the tests in our panel. However, 16 of 18 compounds with known clinical cardiac risk showed drug-induced changes in hiPS-CM by at least one method. Moreover, when taking into account the Cmax values, these 16 compounds could be further classified depending on whether the effects were structural, functional, or both. Overall, the most sensitive test assessed cardiac beating using the xCELLigence platform (88.9%) while the structural endpoints provided additional insight into the mechanism of cardiotoxicity for several drugs. These studies show that a multi-parameter approach examining both cardiac cell health and function in hiPS-CM provides a comprehensive and robust assessment that can aid in the determination of potential cardiac liability.

  18. Screening for addiction in patients with chronic pain and "problematic" substance use: evaluation of a pilot assessment tool.

    PubMed

    Compton, P; Darakjian, J; Miotto, K

    1998-12-01

    Assessing for the presence of addiction in the chronic pain patient receiving chronic opioid analgesia is a challenging clinical task. This paper presents a recently developed screening tool for addictive disease in chronic pain patients, and pilot efficacy data describing its ability to do so. In a small sample of patients (n = 52) referred from a multidisciplinary pain center for "problematic" medication use, responses to the screening questionnaire were compared between patients who met combined diagnostic criteria for a substance use disorder and those who did not, as assessed by a trained addiction medicine specialist. Responses of addicted patients significantly differed from those of nonaddicted patients on multiple screening items, with the two groups easily differentiated by total questionnaire score. Further, three key screening indicators were identified as excellent predictors for the presence of addictive disease in this sample of chronic pain patients. PMID:9879160

  19. Environmental screening tools for assessment of infrastructure plans based on biodiversity preservation and global warming (PEIT, Spain)

    SciTech Connect

    Garcia-Montero, Luis G.

    2010-04-15

    Most Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) research has been concerned with SEA as a procedure, and there have been relatively few developments and tests of analytical methodologies. The first stage of the SEA is the 'screening', which is the process whereby a decision is taken on whether or not SEA is required for a particular programme or plan. The effectiveness of screening and SEA procedures will depend on how well the assessment fits into the planning from the early stages of the decision-making process. However, it is difficult to prepare the environmental screening for an infrastructure plan involving a whole country. To be useful, such methodologies must be fast and simple. We have developed two screening tools which would make it possible to estimate promptly the overall impact an infrastructure plan might have on biodiversity and global warming for a whole country, in order to generate planning alternatives, and to determine whether or not SEA is required for a particular infrastructure plan.

  20. A brief screening tool to assess the risk of contracting HIV infection among active injection drug users

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Dawn K.; Pan, Yi; Rose, Charles E.; Pals, Sherri L.; Mehta, Shruti H.; Kirk, Gregory D.; Herbst, Jeffrey H.

    2015-01-01

    Objective To incorporate preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and other biomedical or intensive behavioral interventions into the care of injection drug users, healthcare providers need validated, rapid, risk screening tools for identifying persons at highest risk of incident HIV infection. Methods To develop and validate a brief screening tool for assessing the risk of contracting HIV (ARCH), we included behavioral and HIV test data from 1904 initially HIV-uninfected men and women enrolled and followed in the ALIVE prospective cohort study between 1988 and 2008. Using logistic regression analyses with generalized estimating equations (GEE), we identified significant predictors of incident HIV infection, then rescaled and summed their regression coefficients to create a risk score. Results The final logistic regression model included age, engagement in a methadone maintenance program, and a composite injection risk score obtained by counting the number of the following five behaviors reported during the past six months: injection of heroin, injection of cocaine, sharing a cooker, sharing needles, or visiting a shooting gallery. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.720, possible scores on index ranged from 0 to 100 and a score ≥46 had a sensitivity of 86.2% and a specificity of 42.5%, appropriate for a screening tool. Discussion We developed an easy to administer 7-question screening tool with a cutoff that is predictive of incident HIV infection in a large prospective cohort of injection drug users in Baltimore. The ARCH-IDU screening tool can be used to prioritize persons who are injecting illicit drugs for consideration of PrEP and other intensive HIV prevention efforts. PMID:25961495

  1. Vitamin D: a poor screening tool for biochemical and radiological rickets.

    PubMed

    Foley, Giles T; Yates, Edward W; Wadia, Farokh; Paton, Robin W

    2012-10-01

    This retrospective study aims to determine if a relationship exists between serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D level and the diagnosis of biochemical or radiological rickets in children with bone and joint pain, muscle fatigue or varus/valgus knees. A retrospective biochemistry database and case note study was undertaken on 115 new patients referred to the senior authors' elective Paediatric Orthopaedic Clinic in 2010. Their mean age was 10.95 years (95% CI 10.24-11.68). Mean serum vitamin D was 18.27 mcg/l (95% CI 16.13-20.41), while 30 mcg/l is the normal threshold. One hundred and three children (88%) had vitamin D levels below normal. Winter/springtime blood samples were more likely to be deficient and this was statistically significant. Three Asian females (2.61%) were diagnosed with radiological rickets. Vitamin D levels below normal are common in children presenting with vague limb or back pain, but this rarely presents with biochemical or radiological rickets. Serum vitamin D level is not a suitable screening tool for biochemical or radiological rickets. Vitamin D requirement in children is unclear and requires further study.

  2. An analysis and decision tool to measure cost benefit of newborn screening for severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) and related T-cell lymphopenia.

    PubMed

    Modell, Vicki; Knaus, Megan; Modell, Fred

    2014-10-01

    Severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) is a group of syndromes resulting from genetic defects causing absence in T-cell and B-cell function, leading to serious and life-threatening infections. SCID is often fatal in the first 2 years of life if not identified and properly treated. While additional laboratory methods are being developed, the current T-cell receptor excision circle assay has proven to have outstanding specificity and sensitivity to accurately identify infants with SCID and other T-cell lymphopenia. The Jeffrey Modell Foundation (JMF) has a long history of advocacy and continues to promote newborn screening for SCID to be implemented in the United States and worldwide. Based on reports provided by California, New York, Texas, and Wisconsin on the results of their population based newborn screening programs, the overall incidence of SCID averaged 1:33,000 and T-cell lymphopenia averaged 1:6,600. JMF has developed a working algorithm or "decision tree", validated by peer-reviewed scientific literature, to be used by Public Health Departments and Health Ministries in states, countries, and regions throughout the world. This decision tool allows for local or regional data to be applied to measure the threshold and economic impact of implementing newborn screening for SCID and T-cell lymphopenia.

  3. Accurate determination of human serum transferrin isoforms: Exploring metal-specific isotope dilution analysis as a quantitative proteomic tool.

    PubMed

    Busto, M Estela del Castillo; Montes-Bayón, Maria; Sanz-Medel, Alfredo

    2006-12-15

    Carbohydrate-deficient transferrin (CDT) measurements are considered a reliable marker for chronic alcohol consumption, and its use is becoming extensive in forensic medicine. However, CDT is not a single molecular entity but refers to a group of sialic acid-deficient transferrin isoforms from mono- to trisialotransferrin. Thus, the development of methods to analyze accurately and precisely individual transferrin isoforms in biological fluids such as serum is of increasing importance. The present work illustrates the use of ICPMS isotope dilution analysis for the quantification of transferrin isoforms once saturated with iron and separated by anion exchange chromatography (Mono Q 5/50) using a mobile phase consisting of a gradient of ammonium acetate (0-250 mM) in 25 mM Tris-acetic acid (pH 6.5). Species-specific and species-unspecific spikes have been explored. In the first part of the study, the use of postcolumn addition of a solution of 200 ng mL(-1) isotopically enriched iron (57Fe, 95%) in 25 mM sodium citrate/citric acid (pH 4) permitted the quantification of individual sialoforms of transferrin (from S2 to S5) in human serum samples of healthy individuals as well as alcoholic patients. Second, the species-specific spike method was performed by synthesizing an isotopically enriched standard of saturated transferrin (saturated with 57Fe). The characterization of the spike was performed by postcolumn reverse isotope dilution analysis (this is, by postcolumn addition of a solution of 200 ng mL(-1) natural iron in sodium citrate/citric acid of pH 4). Also, the stability of the transferrin spike was tested during one week with negligible species transformation. Finally, the enriched transferrin was used to quantify the individual isoforms in the same serum samples obtaining results comparative to those of postcolumn isotope dilution and to those previously published in the literature, demonstrating the suitability of both strategies for quantitative transferrin

  4. Identifying Malnutrition in an Elderly Ambulatory Rehabilitation Population: Agreement between Mini Nutritional Assessment and Validated Screening Tools

    PubMed Central

    Yaxley, Alison; Crotty, Maria; Miller, Michelle

    2015-01-01

    Malnutrition is common in older adults and often goes unrecognised and untreated. Australian evidence-based guidelines for the management of malnutrition indicate that only the Mini Nutritional Assessment short form (MNA-sf) and Rapid Screen are recommended for use as malnutrition screening tools in the rehabilitation setting. The aim of this secondary analysis was to assess the validity and reliability of two malnutrition screening tools, validated in other adult sub-groups, in a rehabilitation population aged ≥60 years. The Council on Nutrition Appetite Questionnaire (CNAQ) and the Simplified Nutritional Appetite Questionnaire (SNAQ), were completed by 185 ambulatory rehabilitation patients (48% male; median age 78 years) and results compared to the full MNA as a reference technique. Prevalence of risk of malnutrition was 63% according to the MNA. For identification of risk of malnutrition the CNAQ had sensitivity of 54%, specificity 81%, positive predictive value 83% and negative predictive value 51%, compared to 28%, 94%, 89% and 44%, respectively, using SNAQ. Assessment of reliability indicated significant slight to fair agreement between MNA with CNAQ (κ = 0.309, p < 0.001) and SNAQ (κ = 0.176, p < 0.001). Neither the CNAQ nor the SNAQ have a high level of validity or reliability in this elderly population and are therefore not recommended for use in the ambulatory rehabilitation setting. Further work is necessary to assess the validity and reliability of other malnutrition screening tools to establish their usefulness in this population. PMID:27417799

  5. [Efficacy and effectiveness of different nutritional screening tools in a tertiary hospital].

    PubMed

    Calleja Fernández, Alicia; Vidal Casariego, Alfonso; Cano Rodríguez, Isidoro; Ballesteros Pomar, María D

    2015-05-01

    Introducción: La elevada prevalencia de desnutrición en el medio hospitalario y sus repercusiones hacen necesario el empleo de herramientas de cribado nutricional para su detección, diagnóstico y tratamiento precoz. Objetivo: Evaluar la herramienta de cribado nutricional más adecuada para el paciente hospitalizado en un hospital de tercer nivel, a nivel global y por servicios de hospitalización. Metodología: Estudio transversal realizado en condiciones de práctica clínica habitual. Se evaluaron 4 métodos de cribado nutricional: Valoración Subjetiva Global (VSG), Mini Nutritional Assessment (MNA), Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (MUST) y Nutritional Risk Screening 2002 (NRS-2002). Los servicios de hospitalización se agruparon en: servicios médicos, Cirugía General, Traumatología, otros servicios quirúrgicos y Oncología-Hematología. Se realizó un análisis estadístico de sensibilidad (S) y especificidad (Sp) y fueron comparados mediante curva COR. Resultados: Fueron valorados 201 pacientes con mediana de edad de 71,6 (RIC 21,4) años y el 51,2% fueron mujeres. La prevalencia de riesgo nutricional (RN) y desnutrición (DN) detectada fue: VSG 62,1%, MNA 68,6%, MUST 53,7% y NRS-2002 35,8%. Con todas las herramientas de cribado nutricional, excepto el MNA, se detectó una mayor prevalencia de RN y DN en los servicios médicos y quirúrgicos. En el análisis global el MNA obtuvo una S =93,3%, una Sp = 71,6% y un área bajo la curva COR de 0,825; el MUST obtuvo una S = 82,4%, una Sp = 93,4% y un área bajo la curva COR de 0,879; el NRS-2002 obtuvo una S = 56,0%, una Sp = 97,4% y un área bajo la curva COR de 0,766. Estos resultados fueron similares en el análisis por servicios de hospitalización. Conclusión: La herramienta de cribado nutricional recomendada en un centro hospitalario de tercer nivel y población envejecida sería el MUST por los adecuados resultados de sensibilidad y especificidad y la facilidad en su realización.

  6. The painDETECT project - far more than a screening tool on neuropathic pain.

    PubMed

    Freynhagen, Rainer; Tölle, Thomas R; Gockel, Ulrich; Baron, Ralf

    2016-06-01

    Background and objectives The painDETECT questionnaire (PD-Q), a simple and reliable screening questionnaire of neuropathic pain, was developed in 2004 in cooperation with the German Research Network on Neuropathic Pain. The initial aim was to implement quality management and to improve the situation of neuropathic pain (NeP) patients in Germany. The PD-Q proved immediately successful and was translated into and validated in multiple languages. Subsequently a comprehensive electronic system (PD) comprising various validated questionnaires with regard to pain typical comorbidities, such as function, sleep, mood or anxiety, was implemented Germany wide. We aimed to provide a comprehensive overview about the development and validation as well as the application of the PD-Q in various clinical conditions. Methods This overview is based on a literature search on English full-text papers using the term 'painDETECT' in Medline and PubMed covering the time period from 2006 to September 2015, amended with further publications cited in the retrieved publications or provided by the questionnaire developers. Results PD-Q as screening tool for NeP described in patients with lower back pain (8 studies), rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis (10), thoracotomy (2 studies), tumor diseases (4 studies), fibromyalgia (4 studies), diverse musculoskeletal conditions (12 studies) and diverse other conditions (10 studies). In addition, the PD-Q was used in 9 studies that investigated the effect of drugs for the treatment of patients with a NeP component. Conclusion To date more than 300,000 patients were assessed, providing the basis for one of the world's largest datasets for chronic pain. Among others the extensive pool of PD-Q data triggered the idea of subgrouping patients on the basis of their individual sensory profiles which might in the future lead to a stratified treatment approach and ultimately to personalized therapy. Started as a healthcare utilization project in Germany

  7. Comparisons of Different Screening Tools for Identifying Fracture/Osteoporosis Risk Among Community-Dwelling Older People

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Sy-Jou; Chen, Yi-Ju; Cheng, Chui-Hsuan; Hwang, Hei-Fen; Chen, Chih-Yi; Lin, Mau-Roung

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A prospective study was conducted to compare criterion, predictive, and construct validities of 9 fracture/osteoporosis assessment tools, including calcaneal quantitative ultrasonography (QUS), Age Bulk One or Never Estrogens (ABONE), body weight criterion (BWC), Fracture Risk Assessment Tool (FRAX), Garvan fracture risk calculator (GARVAN), Osteoporosis Risk Assessment Instrument (ORAI), Osteoporosis Index of Risk (OSIRIS), Osteoporosis Self-Assessment Tool for Asians (OSTA), and Simple Calculated Osteoporosis Risk Estimation (SCORE), among older men and women in Taiwan. Using the femoral neck dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) T-score as an external criterion, the sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, positive and negative likelihood ratios, and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) for each tool were calculated. The ability of these tools to predict injurious falls was examined. A principal component analysis was applied to understand whether these tools were measuring the same underlying construct. The FRAX, BWC, ORAI, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE had AUCs of ≥0.8 in men, while the GARVAN, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE had AUCs of ≥0.8 in women. The sensitivity, negative predictive value, and likelihood ratio of the ABONE, BWC, ORAI, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE tools in both men and women were 100%, ≥90%, and 0.0, respectively; the specificity and positive predictive value and likelihood ratio were far from satisfactory. The GARVAN displayed the best predictive ability of a fall in both men (AUCs, 0.653–0.686) and women (AUCs, 0.560–0.567), despite being smaller in women. The 9 screening tools and 2 central DXA measurements assessed 5 different factors, while the ABONE, BWC, ORAI, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE measured the same one. Simple self-assessment tools can serve as initial screening instruments to rule out persons who have osteoporosis; however, these tools may measure a different construct

  8. Comparisons of Different Screening Tools for Identifying Fracture/Osteoporosis Risk Among Community-Dwelling Older People.

    PubMed

    Chen, Sy-Jou; Chen, Yi-Ju; Cheng, Chui-Hsuan; Hwang, Hei-Fen; Chen, Chih-Yi; Lin, Mau-Roung

    2016-05-01

    A prospective study was conducted to compare criterion, predictive, and construct validities of 9 fracture/osteoporosis assessment tools, including calcaneal quantitative ultrasonography (QUS), Age Bulk One or Never Estrogens (ABONE), body weight criterion (BWC), Fracture Risk Assessment Tool (FRAX), Garvan fracture risk calculator (GARVAN), Osteoporosis Risk Assessment Instrument (ORAI), Osteoporosis Index of Risk (OSIRIS), Osteoporosis Self-Assessment Tool for Asians (OSTA), and Simple Calculated Osteoporosis Risk Estimation (SCORE), among older men and women in Taiwan.Using the femoral neck dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) T-score as an external criterion, the sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, positive and negative likelihood ratios, and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) for each tool were calculated. The ability of these tools to predict injurious falls was examined. A principal component analysis was applied to understand whether these tools were measuring the same underlying construct.The FRAX, BWC, ORAI, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE had AUCs of ≥0.8 in men, while the GARVAN, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE had AUCs of ≥0.8 in women. The sensitivity, negative predictive value, and likelihood ratio of the ABONE, BWC, ORAI, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE tools in both men and women were 100%, ≥90%, and 0.0, respectively; the specificity and positive predictive value and likelihood ratio were far from satisfactory. The GARVAN displayed the best predictive ability of a fall in both men (AUCs, 0.653-0.686) and women (AUCs, 0.560-0.567), despite being smaller in women. The 9 screening tools and 2 central DXA measurements assessed 5 different factors, while the ABONE, BWC, ORAI, OSIRIS, OSTA, and SCORE measured the same one.Simple self-assessment tools can serve as initial screening instruments to rule out persons who have osteoporosis; however, these tools may measure a different construct other than fracture

  9. Risk assessment of cattle handling on pasture using work environment screening tool.

    PubMed

    Geng, Qiuqing; Field, William E; Salomon, Eva

    2015-01-01

    Working with beef cattle in an open area or while on pasture has been shown to expose workers to a high risk of work-related injury. Prior research on this problem has been conducted using mail surveys, interviews, self-reporting of work practices and injury experiences, and summaries of published injury data, including media reports. Prior research on injury prevention has largely focused on worker education in a specific cultural or geographical setting. A pilot study was conducted to test the cross-cultural usability of the Working Environment Screening Tool in Agriculture (WEST-AG), a modification of the WEST, developed for Swedish industrial applications, to assess risk factors associated with farmers working with cattle being raised largely on pasture as compared with cattle raised in confined feeding operations. Swedish and English language versions of WEST-AG were developed and pilot-tested on a convenient sample of eight Swedish and eight Indiana farms that raise beef cattle primarily on pasture. On-site observations were conducted independently by Swedish and US agricultural safety professionals and documented using photography and a 15-risk-of-injury component on an 11-degree linear scale. Comparisons were made between independent observations documented from the Swedish and Indiana application of the WEST, including collective assessment of photographic record, and the results reported. Key findings included (a) a higher level of observed risks on Indiana farms studied as compared with their Swedish counterparts; (b) high levels of worker exposure to cattle, especially mature breeding bulls, on both sets of farms; (c) a higher frequency of self-reported farm-related injuries than anticipated on both Swedish and Indiana farms; (d) substantially different economic, social, cultural, and regulatory forces that influence small-operation Swedish and Indiana beef producers' decisions regarding adoption of safer work practices, including use of new and safer

  10. Thermogravimetric analysis coupled with chemometrics as a powerful predictive tool for ß-thalassemia screening.

    PubMed

    Risoluti, Roberta; Materazzi, Stefano; Sorrentino, Francesco; Maffei, Laura; Caprari, Patrizia

    2016-10-01

    β-Thalassemia is a hemoglobin genetic disorder characterized by the absence or reduced β-globin chain synthesis, one of the constituents of the adult hemoglobin tetramer. In this study the possibility of using thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) followed by chemometrics as a new approach for β-thalassemia detection is proposed. Blood samples from patients with β-thalassemia were analyzed by the TG7 thermobalance and the resulting curves were compared to those typical of healthy individuals. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) was used to evaluate the correlation between the hematological parameters and the thermogravimetric results. The thermogravimetric profiles of blood samples from β-thalassemia patients were clearly distinct from those of healthy individuals as result of the different quantities of water content and corpuscular fraction. The hematological overview showed significant decreases in the values of red blood cell indices and an increase in red cell distribution width value in thalassemia subjects when compared with those of healthy subjects. The implementation of a predictive model based on Partial Least Square Discriminant Analysis (PLS-DA) for β-thalassemia diagnosis, was performed and validated. This model permitted the discrimination of anemic patients and healthy individuals and was able to detect thalassemia in clinically heterogeneous patients as in the presence of δβ-thalassemia and β-thalassemia combined with Hb Lepore. TGA and Chemometrics are capable of predicting ß-thalassemia syndromes using only a few microliters of blood without any pretreatment and with an hour of analysis time. A fast, rapid and cost-effective diagnostic tool for the β-thalassemia screening is proposed. PMID:27474327

  11. Evaluation of a novel electronic genetic screening and clinical decision support tool in prenatal clinical settings.

    PubMed

    Edelman, Emily A; Lin, Bruce K; Doksum, Teresa; Drohan, Brian; Edelson, Vaughn; Dolan, Siobhan M; Hughes, Kevin; O'Leary, James; Vasquez, Lisa; Copeland, Sara; Galvin, Shelley L; DeGroat, Nicole; Pardanani, Setul; Gregory Feero, W; Adams, Claire; Jones, Renee; Scott, Joan

    2014-07-01

    "The Pregnancy and Health Profile" (PHP) is a free prenatal genetic screening and clinical decision support (CDS) software tool for prenatal providers. PHP collects family health history (FHH) during intake and provides point-of-care risk assessment for providers and education for patients. This pilot study evaluated patient and provider responses to PHP and effects of using PHP in practice. PHP was implemented in four clinics. Surveys assessed provider confidence and knowledge and patient and provider satisfaction with PHP. Data on the implementation process were obtained through semi-structured interviews with administrators. Quantitative survey data were analyzed using Chi square test, Fisher's exact test, paired t tests, and multivariate logistic regression. Open-ended survey questions and interviews were analyzed using qualitative thematic analysis. Of the 83% (513/618) of patients that provided feedback, 97% felt PHP was easy to use and 98% easy to understand. Thirty percent (21/71) of participating physicians completed both pre- and post-implementation feedback surveys [13 obstetricians (OBs) and 8 family medicine physicians (FPs)]. Confidence in managing genetic risks significantly improved for OBs on 2/6 measures (p values ≤0.001) but not for FPs. Physician knowledge did not significantly change. Providers reported value in added patient engagement and reported mixed feedback about the CDS report. We identified key steps, resources, and staff support required to implement PHP in a clinical setting. To our knowledge, this study is the first to report on the integration of patient-completed, electronically captured and CDS-enabled FHH software into primary prenatal practice. PHP is acceptable to patients and providers. Key to successful implementation in the future will be customization options and interoperability with electronic health records.

  12. "Pepsi": A Screening and Programming Tool for Understanding the Whole Child.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ellsworth, J'Anne

    1996-01-01

    This article discusses using "PEPSI", a screening and programming method that evaluates the physical, emotional, philosophical, social, and intellectual levels of development in children with disabilities. The steps in the PEPSI screening process are described and a case study is provided. A chart depicting indicators in teaching respect for self…

  13. The Adolescent Health Review: Test of a Computerized Screening Tool in School-Based Clinics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harrison, Patricia A.; Beebe, Timothy J.; Funk, Eunkyung; Rancome, Jeanne

    2003-01-01

    Implemented a computerized screening instrument, the Adolescent Health Review, in urban school-based clinics to test the viability of a stand-alone screening process and its acceptance by patients and providers, examining the relationship between health risks and the stated purpose for the clinic visit. Patients and providers readily accepted the…

  14. A Comparison of Systematic Screening Tools for Emotional and Behavioral Disorders: A Replication

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lane, Kathleen Lynne; Kalberg, Jemma Robertson; Lambert, E. Warren; Crnobori, Mary; Bruhn, Allison Leigh

    2010-01-01

    In this article, the authors examine the psychometric properties of the Student Risk Screening Scale (SRSS), including evaluating the concurrent validity of the SRSS to predict results from the Systematic Screening for Behavior Disorders (SSBD) when used to detect school children with externalizing or internalizing behavior concerns at three…

  15. SPATIALLY-EXPLICIT BAT IMPACT SCREENING TOOL FOR WIND TURBINE SITING

    SciTech Connect

    Versar, Inc.; Exponent, Inc.

    2013-10-28

    As the U.S. seeks to increase energy production from renewable energy sources, development of wind power resources continues to grow. One of the most important ecological issues restricting wind energy development, especially the siting of wind turbines, is the potential adverse effect on bats. High levels of bat fatality have been recorded at a number of wind energy facilities, especially in the eastern United States. The U.S. Department of Energy contracted with Versar, Inc., and Exponent to develop a spatially-explicit site screening tool to evaluate the mortality of bats resulting from interactions (collisions or barotrauma) with wind turbines. The resulting Bat Vulnerability Assessment Tool (BVAT) presented in this report integrates spatial information about turbine locations, bat habitat features, and bat behavior as it relates to possible interactions with turbines. A model demonstration was conducted that focuses on two bat species, the eastern red bat (Lasiurus borealis) and the Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis). The eastern red bat is a relatively common tree-roosting species that ranges broadly during migration in the Eastern U.S., whereas the Indiana bat is regional species that migrates between a summer range and cave hibernacula. Moreover, Indiana bats are listed as endangered, and so the impacts to this species are of particular interest. The model demonstration used conditions at the Mountaineer Wind Energy Center (MWEC), which consists of 44 wind turbines arranged in a linear array near Thomas, West Virginia (Tucker County), to illustrate model functions and not to represent actual or potential impacts of the facility. The turbines at MWEC are erected on the ridge of Backbone Mountain with a nacelle height of 70 meters and a collision area of 72 meters (blade height) or 4,071 meters square. The habitat surrounding the turbines is an Appalachian mixed mesophytic forest. Model sensitivity runs showed that bat mortality in the model was most sensitive to

  16. [The Get-up early test, elaboration process of a new screening tool for psychomotor disadaptation syndrome].

    PubMed

    Cremer, Gérald; Schoevaerdts, Didier; de Saint-Hubert, Marie; Jamart, Jacques; Poulain, Gwenaël; Toussaint, Étienne; Iacovelli, Marjorie; Swine, Christian

    2012-06-01

    Major features of the psychomotor disadaptation syndrome (SDPM) include motor skill dysfunctions with alteration of postural capabilities, walking abilities and psychomotric automatisms. Mini motor test (TMM) is the gold standard used by skilled physiotherapists in order to assess the syndrome. The aim of this article is to present the elaboration process of a new SDPM screening tool, called the Get-up early test. The test was firstly elaborated through consensus of nine experts in the geriatric field. This first 5-items version had poor inter-rater reproducibility and was therefore modified in a new 4-item version. This new version had substantial inter-rater concordance. Compared to the TMM as gold standard, in two different settings (acute ward and nursing home), with a cut-off value≥1/4, diagnostic performance was good (sensibility: 0.73 and specificity 0.88; area under curve: 0.823). The last step was to implement the screening tool in three Mobile geriatric units and we report here their experience. The Get-up early test may be suggested as a new screening tool in order to detect SDPM before more in-depth comprehensive geriatric assessment, and to early adapt the care plan.

  17. SwissSimilarity: A Web Tool for Low to Ultra High Throughput Ligand-Based Virtual Screening.

    PubMed

    Zoete, Vincent; Daina, Antoine; Bovigny, Christophe; Michielin, Olivier

    2016-08-22

    SwissSimilarity is a new web tool for rapid ligand-based virtual screening of small to unprecedented ultralarge libraries of small molecules. Screenable compounds include drugs, bioactive and commercial molecules, as well as 205 million of virtual compounds readily synthesizable from commercially available synthetic reagents. Predictions can be carried out on-the-fly using six different screening approaches, including 2D molecular fingerprints as well as superpositional and fast nonsuperpositional 3D similarity methodologies. SwissSimilarity is part of a large initiative of the SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics to provide online tools for computer-aided drug design, such as SwissDock, SwissBioisostere or SwissTargetPrediction with which it can interoperate, and is linked to other well-established online tools and databases. User interface and backend have been designed for simplicity and ease of use, to provide proficient virtual screening capabilities to specialists and nonexperts in the field. SwissSimilarity is accessible free of charge or login at http://www.swisssimilarity.ch . PMID:27391578

  18. Use of a clinical tool for screening and diagnosis of cutaneous leishmaniasis in Sri Lanka

    PubMed Central

    Siriwardana, H. V. Y. D.; Senarath, U.; Chandrawansa, P. H.; Karunaweera, N. D.

    2015-01-01

    Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) was first detected in Sri Lanka in 1992.Local disease is caused by a genetically different variant of Leishmania donovani. Early case detection and management is the mainstay of L. donovani control. High degree of clinical suspicion is critical but a clinical diagnostic tool is not available for leishmaniasis. Current study described, for the first time, a two-staged clinical algorhythm that facilitates screening of CL in Sri Lanka by primary health care worker in stage 1 and management by medical professional in stage 2.Selected clinical markers of 400 patients suspected of CL were analysed retrospectively with laboratory confirmation of leishmaniasis. Ten clinical markers predicted CL with a over 90% accuracy. Subsets of markers showed high levels of sensitivities (60–97.2%) and/or significant association with positive laboratory results as compared to negative lesions [typical onset (acne-form, painless non-itchy), (P = 0.026), size up to 2 cm (P = 0.046), well-defined edges (P = 0.002), regular edges (P = 0.018), rounded shape (P = 0.030), and lesions at 5–8 months (P = 0.052)]. Five of them (typical onset, number up to 2, small size, rounded edges, and rounded shape) also had > 70% sensitivity levels as compared to laboratory findings. Typical onset had the highest sensitivity of 97% and a PPV of 72%. Lesions at 5–8 months duration having defined edges (P =  0.013, specificity 89.7%, PPV 83.1) or having regular edges (P = 0.006, specificity 86.2%, PPV 82.4%) were also predictive of CL. Most of early laboratory-confirmed ( < 12 months) lesions remained  < 3 cm (sensitivity > 67%, PPV > 70%) and had defined edges (sensitivity of 52–71%, specificity 46.7–68.8%), (PPV 75.1–86%). Four clinical markers served as good diagnostic markers in both early ( ≤ 4) and late (>12 months) lesions, viz. typical onset (91.3–98.4%), presence of ≤ 2 lesions (sensitivity 82.6

  19. Effective gender-based violence screening tools for use in primary health care settings in Afghanistan and Pakistan: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Vogel, J

    2013-03-01

    Health care providers have an important role to play in the prevention and response to violence against women. However, the existing tools for screening for gender-based violence have been mostly formulated in the context of developed countries. This paper assesses which violence screening tools designed for use as the primary health care level would be feasible for use in Afghanistan and Pakistan, countries characterized by limited resources, unsupportive institutional frameworks and gender and social norms that reinforce domestic violence. A systematic review was made of the literature to evaluate the different screening instruments. The Women's Experience with Battering Scale (short version) and the Ongoing Violence Assessment Tool were judged to be the most useful tools for screening for violence against women in Afghanistan and Pakistan because they are short, S easy to administer and to score and respond to health care provider identified barriers of time and knowledge constraints for conducting screening for intimate partner violence.

  20. NanoLuc Luciferase – A Multifunctional Tool for High Throughput Antibody Screening

    PubMed Central

    Boute, Nicolas; Lowe, Peter; Berger, Sven; Malissard, Martine; Robert, Alain; Tesar, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Based on the recent development of NanoLuc luciferase (Nluc), a small (19 kDa), highly stable, ATP independent, bioluminescent protein, an extremely robust and ultra high sensitivity screening system has been developed whereby primary hits of therapeutic antibodies and antibody fragments could be characterized and quantified without purification. This system is very versatile allowing cellular and solid phase ELISA but also homogeneous BRET based screening assays, relative affinity determinations with competition ELISA and direct Western blotting. The new Nluc protein fusion represents a “swiss army knife solution” for today and future high throughput antibody drug screenings. PMID:26924984

  1. Utility of a Brief Screening Tool for Medication-Related Problems

    PubMed Central

    Snyder, Margie E.; Pater, Karen S.; Frail, Caitlin K.; Hudmon, Karen Suchanek; Doebbeling, Brad N.; Smith, Randall B.

    2014-01-01

    Background Medication therapy management (MTM) services position pharmacists to prevent, detect, and resolve medication-related problems (MRPs.) However, selecting patients for MTM who are most at risk for MRPs is a challenge. Using self-administered scales that are practical for use in clinical practice are one approach. Objective The objective of this study was to estimate the psychometric properties of a brief self-administered scale as a screening tool for MRPs. Methods This was a non-randomized study utilizing questionnaires administered cross-sectionally. In Phase 1, patients (n=394) at community pharmacies and outpatient clinics completed 78 items, provided to the study team by item authors, assessing perceived MRPs. These data were used to select items for further investigation as a brief, self-administered scale, and estimate the reliability and construct validity of the resulting instrument. In Phase 2, a convenience sample of patients (n=200) at community pharmacies completed a nine-item, self-administered scale. After completion, they were engaged in a comprehensive medication review by their pharmacist who was blinded to questionnaire responses. The main outcome measure for estimating the criterion-related validity of the scale was the number of pharmacist-identified medication-related problems (MRPs.) Item statistics were computed as well as bivariate associations between scale scores and other variables with MRPs. A multivariate model was constructed to examine the influence of scale scores on MRPs after controlling for other significant variables. Results Higher scores on the questionnaire were positively correlated with more pharmacist-identified MRPs (r = 0.24; p= 0.001) and scores remained as a significant predictor (p= 0.031) when controlling for other relevant variables in a multivariate regression model (R2= 0.21; p < 0.001.) Conclusions Patient responses on the scale may have a modest role in predicting MRPs. The use of self

  2. Testing tubewell platform color as a rapid screening tool for arsenic and manganese in drinking water wells.

    PubMed

    Biswas, Ashis; Nath, Bibhash; Bhattacharya, Prosun; Halder, Dipti; Kundu, Amit K; Mandal, Ujjal; Mukherjee, Abhijit; Chatterjee, Debashis; Jacks, Gunnar

    2012-01-01

    A low-cost rapid screening tool for arsenic (As) and manganese (Mn) in groundwater is urgently needed to formulate mitigation policies for sustainable drinking water supply. This study attempts to make statistical comparison between tubewell (TW) platform color and the level of As and Mn concentration in groundwater extracted from the respective TW (n = 423), to validate platform color as a screening tool for As and Mn in groundwater. The result shows that a black colored platform with 73% certainty indicates that well water is safe from As, while with 84% certainty a red colored platform indicates that well water is enriched with As, compared to WHO drinking water guideline of 10 μg/L. With this guideline the efficiency, sensitivity, and specificity of the tool are 79%, 77%, and 81%, respectively. However, the certainty values become 93% and 38%, respectively, for black and red colored platforms at 50 μg/L, the drinking water standards for India and Bangladesh. The respective efficiency, sensitivity, and specificity are 65%, 85%, and 59%. Similarly for Mn, black and red colored platform with 78% and 64% certainty, respectively, indicates that well water is either enriched or free from Mn at the Indian national drinking water standard of 300 μg/L. With this guideline the efficiency, sensitivity, and specificity of the tool are 71%, 67%, and 76%, respectively. Thus, this study demonstrates that TW platform color can be potentially used as an initial screening tool for identifying TWs with elevated dissolved As and Mn, to make further rigorous groundwater testing more intensive and implement mitigation options for safe drinking water supplies.

  3. The E-screen assay as a tool to identify estrogens: An update on estrogenic environmental pollutants

    SciTech Connect

    Soto, A.M.; Sonnenschein, C.; Chung, K.L.; Fernandez, M.F.

    1995-10-01

    Estrogens are defined by their ability to induce the proliferation of cells of the female genital tract. The wide chemical diversity of estrogenic compounds precludes an accurate prediction of estrogenic activity on the basis of chemical structure. Rodent bioassays are not suited for the large-scale screening of chemicals before their release into the environment because of their cost, complexity, and ethical concerns. The E-SCREEN assay was developed to assess the estrogenicity of environmental chemicals using the proliferative effect of estrogens on their target cells as an end point. This quantitative assay compares the cell number achieved by similar inocula of MCF-7 cells in the absence of estrogens (negative control) and in the presence of 17{beta}-estradiol (positive control) and a range of concentrations of chemicals suspected to be estrogenic. Among the compounds tested, several {open_quotes}new{close_quotes} estrogens were found; alkylphenols, phthalates, some PCB congeners and hydroxylated PCBs, and the insecticides dieldrin, endosulfan, and toxaphene were estrogenic by the E-SCREEN assay. In addition, these compounds competed with estradiol for binding to the estrogen receptor and increased the levels of progesterone receptor and pS2 in MCF-7 cells, as expected from estrogen mimics. Recombinant human growth factors (bFGF, EGF, IGF-1) and insulin did not increase cell yields. The aims of the work summarized in this paper were (a) to validate the E-SCREEN assay; (b) to screen a variety of chemicals present in the environment to identify those that may be causing reproductive effects in wildlife and humans; (c) to assess whether environmental estrogens may act cumulatively; and finally (d) to discuss the reliability of this and other assays to screen chemicals for their estrogenicity before they are released into the environment. 57 refs., 3 figs., 9 tabs.

  4. Screening tool to evaluate the vulnerability of down-gradient receptors to groundwater contaminants from uncapped landfills

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Baker, Ronald J.; Reilly, Timothy J.; Lopez, Anthony R.; Romanok, Kristin M.; Wengrowski, Edward W

    2015-01-01

    A screening tool for quantifying levels of concern for contaminants detected in monitoring wells on or near landfills to down-gradient receptors (streams, wetlands and residential lots) was developed and evaluated. The tool uses Quick Domenico Multi-scenario (QDM), a spreadsheet implementation of Domenico-based solute transport, to estimate concentrations of contaminants reaching receptors under steady-state conditions from a constant-strength source. Unlike most other available Domenico-based model applications, QDM calculates the time for down-gradient contaminant concentrations to approach steady state and appropriate dispersivity values, and allows for up to fifty simulations on a single spreadsheet. Sensitivity of QDM solutions to critical model parameters was quantified. The screening tool uses QDM results to categorize landfills as having high, moderate and low levels of concern, based on contaminant concentrations reaching receptors relative to regulatory concentrations. The application of this tool was demonstrated by assessing levels of concern (as defined by the New Jersey Pinelands Commission) for thirty closed, uncapped landfills in the New Jersey Pinelands National Reserve, using historic water-quality data from monitoring wells on and near landfills and hydraulic parameters from regional flow models. Twelve of these landfills are categorized as having high levels of concern, indicating a need for further assessment. This tool is not a replacement for conventional numerically-based transport model or other available Domenico-based applications, but is suitable for quickly assessing the level of concern posed by a landfill or other contaminant point source before expensive and lengthy monitoring or remediation measures are taken. In addition to quantifying the level of concern using historic groundwater-monitoring data, the tool allows for archiving model scenarios and adding refinements as new data become available.

  5. Screening tool to evaluate the vulnerability of down-gradient receptors to groundwater contaminants from uncapped landfills.

    PubMed

    Baker, Ronald J; Reilly, Timothy J; Lopez, Anthony; Romanok, Kristin; Wengrowski, Edward W

    2015-09-01

    A screening tool for quantifying levels of concern for contaminants detected in monitoring wells on or near landfills to down-gradient receptors (streams, wetlands and residential lots) was developed and evaluated. The tool uses Quick Domenico Multi-scenario (QDM), a spreadsheet implementation of Domenico-based solute transport, to estimate concentrations of contaminants reaching receptors under steady-state conditions from a constant-strength source. Unlike most other available Domenico-based model applications, QDM calculates the time for down-gradient contaminant concentrations to approach steady state and appropriate dispersivity values, and allows for up to fifty simulations on a single spreadsheet. Sensitivity of QDM solutions to critical model parameters was quantified. The screening tool uses QDM results to categorize landfills as having high, moderate and low levels of concern, based on contaminant concentrations reaching receptors relative to regulatory concentrations. The application of this tool was demonstrated by assessing levels of concern (as defined by the New Jersey Pinelands Commission) for thirty closed, uncapped landfills in the New Jersey Pinelands National Reserve, using historic water-quality data from monitoring wells on and near landfills and hydraulic parameters from regional flow models. Twelve of these landfills are categorized as having high levels of concern, indicating a need for further assessment. This tool is not a replacement for conventional numerically-based transport model or other available Domenico-based applications, but is suitable for quickly assessing the level of concern posed by a landfill or other contaminant point source before expensive and lengthy monitoring or remediation measures are taken. In addition to quantifying the level of concern using historic groundwater-monitoring data, the tool allows for archiving model scenarios and adding refinements as new data become available.

  6. Developmental screening tools: feasibility of use at primary healthcare level in low- and middle-income settings.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Vinicius Jobim; Morris, Jodi; Martines, José

    2014-06-01

    An estimated 150 million children have a disability. Early identification of developmental disabilities is a high priority for the World Health Organization to allow action to reduce impairments through Gap Action Program on mental health. The study identified the feasibility of using the developmental screening and monitoring tools for children aged 0-3 year(s) by non-specialist primary healthcare providers in low-resource settings. A systematic review of the literature was conducted to identify the tools, assess their psychometric properties, and feasibility of use in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Key indicators to examine feasibility in LMICs were derived from a consultation with 23 international experts. We identified 426 studies from which 14 tools used in LMICs were extracted for further examination. Three tools reported adequate psychometric properties and met most of the feasibility criteria. Three tools appear promising for use in identifying and monitoring young children with disabilities at primary healthcare level in LMICs. Further research and development are needed to optimize these tools. PMID:25076668

  7. Developmental Screening Tools: Feasibility of Use at Primary Healthcare Level in Low- and Middle-income Settings

    PubMed Central

    Morris, Jodi; Martines, José

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT An estimated 150 million children have a disability. Early identification of developmental disabilities is a high priority for the World Health Organization to allow action to reduce impairments through Gap Action Program on mental health. The study identified the feasibility of using the developmental screening and monitoring tools for children aged 0-3 year(s) by non-specialist primary healthcare providers in low-resource settings. A systematic review of the literature was conducted to identify the tools, assess their psychometric properties, and feasibility of use in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Key indicators to examine feasibility in LMICs were derived from a consultation with 23 international experts. We identified 426 studies from which 14 tools used in LMICs were extracted for further examination. Three tools reported adequate psychometric properties and met most of the feasibility criteria. Three tools appear promising for use in identifying and monitoring young children with disabilities at primary healthcare level in LMICs. Further research and development are needed to optimize these tools. PMID:25076668

  8. Facilitating high resolution mass spectrometry data processing for screening of environmental water samples: An evaluation of two deconvolution tools.

    PubMed

    Bade, Richard; Causanilles, Ana; Emke, Erik; Bijlsma, Lubertus; Sancho, Juan V; Hernandez, Felix; de Voogt, Pim

    2016-11-01

    A screening approach was applied to influent and effluent wastewater samples. After injection in a LC-LTQ-Orbitrap, data analysis was performed using two deconvolution tools, MsXelerator (modules MPeaks and MS Compare) and Sieve 2.1. The outputs were searched incorporating an in-house database of >200 pharmaceuticals and illicit drugs or ChemSpider. This hidden target screening approach led to the detection of numerous compounds including the illicit drug cocaine and its metabolite benzoylecgonine and the pharmaceuticals carbamazepine, gemfibrozil and losartan. The compounds found using both approaches were combined, and isotopic pattern and retention time prediction were used to filter out false positives. The remaining potential positives were reanalysed in MS/MS mode and their product ions were compared with literature and/or mass spectral libraries. The inclusion of the chemical database ChemSpider led to the tentative identification of several metabolites, including paraxanthine, theobromine, theophylline and carboxylosartan, as well as the pharmaceutical phenazone. The first three of these compounds are isomers and they were subsequently distinguished based on their product ions and predicted retention times. This work has shown that the use deconvolution tools facilitates non-target screening and enables the identification of a higher number of compounds. PMID:27351148

  9. Facilitating high resolution mass spectrometry data processing for screening of environmental water samples: An evaluation of two deconvolution tools.

    PubMed

    Bade, Richard; Causanilles, Ana; Emke, Erik; Bijlsma, Lubertus; Sancho, Juan V; Hernandez, Felix; de Voogt, Pim

    2016-11-01

    A screening approach was applied to influent and effluent wastewater samples. After injection in a LC-LTQ-Orbitrap, data analysis was performed using two deconvolution tools, MsXelerator (modules MPeaks and MS Compare) and Sieve 2.1. The outputs were searched incorporating an in-house database of >200 pharmaceuticals and illicit drugs or ChemSpider. This hidden target screening approach led to the detection of numerous compounds including the illicit drug cocaine and its metabolite benzoylecgonine and the pharmaceuticals carbamazepine, gemfibrozil and losartan. The compounds found using both approaches were combined, and isotopic pattern and retention time prediction were used to filter out false positives. The remaining potential positives were reanalysed in MS/MS mode and their product ions were compared with literature and/or mass spectral libraries. The inclusion of the chemical database ChemSpider led to the tentative identification of several metabolites, including paraxanthine, theobromine, theophylline and carboxylosartan, as well as the pharmaceutical phenazone. The first three of these compounds are isomers and they were subsequently distinguished based on their product ions and predicted retention times. This work has shown that the use deconvolution tools facilitates non-target screening and enables the identification of a higher number of compounds.

  10. Screening tool to evaluate the vulnerability of down-gradient receptors to groundwater contaminants from uncapped landfills

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, Ronald J.; Reilly, Timothy J.; Lopez, Anthony; Romanok, Kristin; Wengrowski, Edward W.

    2015-09-15

    Highlights: • A spreadsheet-based risk screening tool for groundwater affected by landfills is presented. • Domenico solute transport equations are used to estimate downgradient contaminant concentrations. • Landfills are categorized as presenting high, moderate or low risks. • Analysis of parameter sensitivity and examples of the method’s application are given. • The method has value to regulators and those considering redeveloping closed landfills. - Abstract: A screening tool for quantifying levels of concern for contaminants detected in monitoring wells on or near landfills to down-gradient receptors (streams, wetlands and residential lots) was developed and evaluated. The tool uses Quick Domenico Multi-scenario (QDM), a spreadsheet implementation of Domenico-based solute transport, to estimate concentrations of contaminants reaching receptors under steady-state conditions from a constant-strength source. Unlike most other available Domenico-based model applications, QDM calculates the time for down-gradient contaminant concentrations to approach steady state and appropriate dispersivity values, and allows for up to fifty simulations on a single spreadsheet. Sensitivity of QDM solutions to critical model parameters was quantified. The screening tool uses QDM results to categorize landfills as having high, moderate and low levels of concern, based on contaminant concentrations reaching receptors relative to regulatory concentrations. The application of this tool was demonstrated by assessing levels of concern (as defined by the New Jersey Pinelands Commission) for thirty closed, uncapped landfills in the New Jersey Pinelands National Reserve, using historic water-quality data from monitoring wells on and near landfills and hydraulic parameters from regional flow models. Twelve of these landfills are categorized as having high levels of concern, indicating a need for further assessment. This tool is not a replacement for conventional numerically

  11. Virtual screening: an in silico tool for interlacing the chemical universe with the proteome.

    PubMed

    Westermaier, Yvonne; Barril, Xavier; Scapozza, Leonardo

    2015-01-01

    In silico screening both in the forward (traditional virtual screening) and reverse sense (inverse virtual screening (IVS)) are helpful techniques for interlacing the chemical universe of small molecules with the proteome. The former, which is using a protein structure and a large chemical database, is well-known by the scientific community. We have chosen here to provide an overview on the latter, focusing on validation and target prioritization strategies. By comparing it to complementary or alternative wet-lab approaches, we put IVS in the broader context of chemical genomics, target discovery and drug design. By giving examples from the literature and an own example on how to validate the approach, we provide guidance on the issues related to IVS.

  12. Field screening at petroleum contaminated sites: A tool to save time, money

    SciTech Connect

    Hood, G.M.; Pucel, P.G.; Allee, P.

    1998-01-01

    The most expensive part of an environmental assessment is often lab services. Control of these costs while still collecting adequate data to assess a site is sometimes the difference between solvency and bankruptcy, especially for small companies. Fortunately, the use of field screening techniques can significantly reduce the quantity of samples going to the laboratory for analysis, thus controlling overall project costs. Chemical and Environmental Consultants, Inc. (CEC) has been field evaluating a rapid, widely applicable method for field screening petroleum contaminated soils and wastes for SVOCs. The method is similar in application to US EPA Method 418.1 and allows for the field screening of soil and waste samples in about 10 minutes. The method uses fluorescence spectroscopy analysis of a solvent extract of the soil or waste sample.

  13. Laboratory tools and strategies for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus screening, surveillance and typing: state of the art and unmet needs.

    PubMed

    Struelens, M J; Hawkey, P M; French, G L; Witte, W; Tacconelli, E

    2009-02-01

    The public health burden caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections is now widely recognized, and is a cause of public alarm. Effective MRSA risk management in the healthcare system as well as in the community should rely on accurate detection of reservoirs and sources of transmission, as well as on close monitoring of the impact of interventions on disease incidence and bacterial dissemination. MRSA carrier screening and disease surveillance, coupled with molecular typing, are key information tools for integrated MRSA control and individual risk assessment. These tools should be tailored to the distinct needs of local interventions and national prevention programmes. Surveillance schemes should primarily inform local staff and serve as quality assurance about MRSA risk management. New technologies, including the use of selective culture media and real-time PCR assays, allow faster detection of MRSA carriers upon admission or during stay in healthcare institutions. More research is needed to ascertain their cost-effectiveness for MRSA control. Likewise, tremendous progress has been made concerning molecular typing methods, with optimization and standardization of sequence-based technologies offering broad applicability and high throughput. However, no single S. aureus typing method is yet providing fully reliable information within the range of discrimination needed for public health action. Further refinement of genotyping methods and international harmonization of surveillance and typing schemes must be achieved to facilitate global MRSA control.

  14. Capillary electrophoresis as a screening tool for alpha amylase inhibitors in plant extracts

    PubMed Central

    Hamdan, Imad I.; Afifi, Fatima U.

    2010-01-01

    Capillary electrophoresis (CE) method was developed for screening plant extract for potential alpha amylase (AA) inhibitory activity. The method was validated against a well established UV method. Overall, the proposed method was shown able to detect plants with significant alpha amylase inhibitory activity but not those with rather clinically insignificant activities. Fifty plant species were screened using both the proposed CE method and the UV method and seven plant species were found to possess significant AA inhibitory activities. Two plant species were proved to have alpha amylase inhibitory activity for the first time. PMID:24115900

  15. Screen Twice, Cut Once: Assessing the Predictive Validity of Teacher Selection Tools. Working Paper 120

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goldhaber, Dan; Grout, Cyrus; Huntington-Klein, Nick

    2014-01-01

    Evidence suggests that teacher hiring in public schools is ad hoc and often fails to result in good selection among applicants. Some districts use structured selection instruments in the hiring process, but we know little about the efficacy of such tools. In this paper, we evaluate the ability of applicant selection tools used by the Spokane…

  16. A GIS-assisted regional screening tool to evaluate the leaching potential of volatile and non-volatile pesticides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ki, Seo Jin; Ray, Chittaranjan

    2015-03-01

    A regional screening tool-which is useful in cases where few site-specific parameters are available for complex vadose zone models-assesses the leaching potential of pollutants to groundwater over large areas. In this study, the previous pesticide leaching tool used in Hawaii was revised to account for the release of new volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the soil surface. The tool was modified to introduce expanded terms in the traditional pesticide ranking indices (i.e., retardation and attenuation factors), allowing the estimation of the leaching fraction of volatile chemicals based on recharge, soil, and chemical properties to be updated. Results showed that the previous tool significantly overestimated the mass fraction of VOCs leached through soils as the recharge rates increased above 0.001801 m/d. In contrast, the revised tool successfully delineated vulnerable areas to the selected VOCs based on two reference chemicals, a known leacher and non-leacher, which were determined in local conditions. The sensitivity analysis with the Latin-Hypercube-One-factor-At-a-Time method revealed that the new leaching tool was most sensitive to changes in the soil organic carbon sorption coefficient, fractional organic carbon content, and Henry's law constant; and least sensitive to parameters such as the bulk density, water content at field capacity, and particle density in soils. When the revised tool was compared to the analytical (STANMOD) and numerical (HYDRUS-1D) models as a susceptibility measure, it ranked particular VOCs well (e.g., benzene, carbofuran, and toluene) that were consistent with other two models under the given conditions. Therefore, the new leaching tool can be widely used to address intrinsic groundwater vulnerability to contamination of pesticides and VOCs, along with the DRASTIC method or similar Tier 1 models such as SCI-GROW and WIN-PST.

  17. GlycoMinestruct: a new bioinformatics tool for highly accurate mapping of the human N-linked and O-linked glycoproteomes by incorporating structural features

    PubMed Central

    Li, Fuyi; Li, Chen; Revote, Jerico; Zhang, Yang; Webb, Geoffrey I.; Li, Jian; Song, Jiangning; Lithgow, Trevor

    2016-01-01

    Glycosylation plays an important role in cell-cell adhesion, ligand-binding and subcellular recognition. Current approaches for predicting protein glycosylation are primarily based on sequence-derived features, while little work has been done to systematically assess the importance of structural features to glycosylation prediction. Here, we propose a novel bioinformatics method called GlycoMinestruct(http://glycomine.erc.monash.edu/Lab/GlycoMine_Struct/) for improved prediction of human N- and O-linked glycosylation sites by combining sequence and structural features in an integrated computational framework with a two-step feature-selection strategy. Experiments indicated that GlycoMinestruct outperformed NGlycPred, the only predictor that incorporated both sequence and structure features, achieving AUC values of 0.941 and 0.922 for N- and O-linked glycosylation, respectively, on an independent test dataset. We applied GlycoMinestruct to screen the human structural proteome and obtained high-confidence predictions for N- and O-linked glycosylation sites. GlycoMinestruct can be used as a powerful tool to expedite the discovery of glycosylation events and substrates to facilitate hypothesis-driven experimental studies. PMID:27708373

  18. COMPARISON OF CHEMICAL SCREENING AND RANKING APPROACHES: THE WASTE MINIMIZATION PRIORITIZATION TOOL VERSUS TOXIC EQUIVALENCY POTENTIALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Chemical screening in the United States is often conducted using scoring and ranking methodologies. Linked models accounting for chemical fate, exposure, and toxicological effects are generally preferred in Europe and in product Life Cycle Assessment. For the first time, a compar...

  19. Developing a Brief Cross-Culturally Validated Screening Tool for Externalizing Disorders in Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zwirs, Barbara W. C.; Burger, Huibert; Schulpen, Tom W. J.; Buitelaar, Jan K.

    2008-01-01

    The study aims at developing and validating a brief, easy-to-use screening instrument for teachers to predict externalizing disorders in children and recommending them for timely referral. The scores are compared between Dutch and non-Dutch immigrant children and a significant amount of cases for externalizing disorders were identified but sex and…

  20. Screen-Capture Instructional Technology: A Cognitive Tool for Blended Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Jeffrey George

    2012-01-01

    Little empirical investigation has been conducted on high school students and teachers using online instructional multimedia developed entirely from the classroom teacher's traditional live-lecture format. This study investigated academic achievement, engagement, preference, and curriculum development using screen-capture instructional…

  1. Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy as tool for high-content-screening in yeast (HCS-FCS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wood, Christopher; Huff, Joseph; Marshall, Will; Yu, Elden Qingfeng; Unruh, Jay; Slaughter, Brian; Wiegraebe, Winfried

    2011-03-01

    To measure protein interactions, diffusion properties, and local concentrations in single cells, Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy (FCS) is a well-established and widely accepted method. However, measurements can take a long time and are laborious. Therefore investigations are typically limited to tens or a few hundred cells. We developed an automated system to overcome these limitations and make FCS available for High Content Screening (HCS). We acquired data in an auto-correlation screen of more than 4000 of the 6000 proteins of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, tagged with eGFP and expanded the HCS to use cross-correlation between eGFP and mCherry tagged proteins to screen for molecular interactions. We performed all high-content FCS screens (HCS-FCS) in a 96 well plate format. The system is based on an extended Carl Zeiss fluorescence correlation spectrometer ConfoCor 3 attached to a confocal microscope LSM 510. We developed image-processing software to control these hardware components. The confocal microscope obtained overview images and we developed an algorithm to search for and detect single cells. At each cell, we positioned a laser beam at a well-defined point and recorded the fluctuation signal. We used automatic scoring of the signal for quality control. All data was stored and organized in a database based on the open source Open Microscopy Environment (OME) platform. To analyze the data we used the image processing language IDL and the open source statistical software package R.

  2. Assessment of an Interactive Computer-Based Patient Prenatal Genetic Screening and Testing Education Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Griffith, Jennifer M.; Sorenson, James R.; Bowling, J. Michael; Jennings-Grant, Tracey

    2005-01-01

    The Enhancing Patient Prenatal Education study tested the feasibility and educational impact of an interactive program for patient prenatal genetic screening and testing education. Patients at two private practices and one public health clinic participated (N = 207). The program collected knowledge and measures of anxiety before and after use of…

  3. LASSO-ligand activity by surface similarity order: a new tool for ligand based virtual screening.

    PubMed

    Reid, Darryl; Sadjad, Bashir S; Zsoldos, Zsolt; Simon, Aniko

    2008-01-01

    Virtual Ligand Screening (VLS) has become an integral part of the drug discovery process for many pharmaceutical companies. Ligand similarity searches provide a very powerful method of screening large databases of ligands to identify possible hits. If these hits belong to new chemotypes the method is deemed even more successful. eHiTS LASSO uses a new interacting surface point types (ISPT) molecular descriptor that is generated from the 3D structure of the ligand, but unlike most 3D descriptors it is conformation independent. Combined with a neural network machine learning technique, LASSO screens molecular databases at an ultra fast speed of 1 million structures in under 1 min on a standard PC. The results obtained from eHiTS LASSO trained on relatively small training sets of just 2, 4 or 8 actives are presented using the diverse directory of useful decoys (DUD) dataset. It is shown that over a wide range of receptor families, eHiTS LASSO is consistently able to enrich screened databases and provides scaffold hopping ability.

  4. The PHQ-PD as a Screening Tool for Panic Disorder in the Primary Care Setting in Spain

    PubMed Central

    Wood, Cristina Mae; Ruíz-Rodríguez, Paloma; Tomás-Tomás, Patricia; Gracia-Gracia, Irene; Dongil-Collado, Esperanza; Iruarrizaga, M. Iciar

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Panic disorder is a common anxiety disorder and is highly prevalent in Spanish primary care centres. The use of validated tools can improve the detection of panic disorder in primary care populations, thus enabling referral for specialized treatment. The aim of this study is to determine the accuracy of the Patient Health Questionnaire-Panic Disorder (PHQ-PD) as a screening and diagnostic tool for panic disorder in Spanish primary care centres. Method We compared the psychometric properties of the PHQ-PD to the reference standard, the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I Disorders (SCID-I) interview. General practitioners referred 178 patients who completed the entire PHQ test, including the PHQ-PD, to undergo the SCID-I. The sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values and positive and negative likelihood ratios of the PHQ-PD were assessed. Results The operating characteristics of the PHQ-PD are moderate. The best cut-off score was 5 (sensitivity .77, specificity .72). Modifications to the questionnaire's algorithms improved test characteristics (sensitivity .77, specificity .72) compared to the original algorithm. The screening question alone yielded the highest sensitivity score (.83). Conclusion Although the modified algorithm of the PHQ-PD only yielded moderate results as a diagnostic test for panic disorder, it was better than the original. Using only the first question of the PHQ-PD showed the best psychometric properties (sensitivity). Based on these findings, we suggest the use of the screening questions for screening purposes and the modified algorithm for diagnostic purposes. PMID:27525977

  5. Molecular Markers of Diabetic Retinopathy: Potential Screening Tool of the Future?

    PubMed Central

    Pusparajah, Priyia; Lee, Learn-Han; Abdul Kadir, Khalid

    2016-01-01

    Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is among the leading causes of new onset blindness in adults. Effective treatment may delay the onset and progression of this disease provided it is diagnosed early. At present retinopathy can only be diagnosed via formal examination of the eye by a trained specialist, which limits the population that can be effectively screened. An easily accessible, reliable screening biomarker of diabetic retinopathy would be of tremendous benefit in detecting the population in need of further assessment and treatment. This review highlights specific biomarkers that show promise as screening markers to detect early diabetic retinopathy or even to detect patients at increased risk of DR at the time of diagnosis of diabetes. The pathobiology of DR is complex and multifactorial giving rise to a wide array of potential biomarkers. This review provides an overview of these pathways and looks at older markers such as advanced glycation end products (AGEs), inflammatory markers, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) as well as other newer proteins with a role in the pathogenesis of DR including neuroprotective factors such as brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and Pigment Epithelium Derived Factor (PEDF); SA100A12, pentraxin 3, brain natriuretic peptide, apelin 3, and chemerin as well as various metabolites such as lipoprotein A, folate, and homocysteine. We also consider the possible role of proteins identified through proteomics work whose levels are altered in the sera of patients with DR as screening markers though their role in pathophysiology remains to be characterized. The role of microRNA as a promising new screening marker is also discussed. PMID:27313539

  6. Comparison of Anthropometric and Atherogenic Indices as Screening Tools of Metabolic Syndrome in the Kazakh Adult Population in Xinjiang

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xiang-Hui; Zhang, Mei; He, Jia; Yan, Yi-Zhong; Ma, Jiao-Long; Wang, Kui; Ma, Ru-Lin; Guo, Heng; Mu, La-Ti; Ding, Yu-Song; Zhang, Jing-Yu; Liu, Jia-Ming; Li, Shu-Gang; Niu, Qiang; Rui, Dong-Sheng; Guo, Shu-Xia

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To compare the screening ability of various anthropometric and atherogenic indices for Metabolic syndrome (MetS) using three common criteria and to evaluate the validity of suitable parameters in combination for the screening of MetS among a Kazakh population in Xinjiang. Methods: A total of 3752 individuals were selected using the stratified cluster random sampling method from nomadic Kazakhs (≥18 years old) in Xinyuan county, Xinjiang, China, which is approximately 4407 km away from the capital Beijing. MetS was defined by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III (ATP III) and Joint Interim Statement (JIS) criteria. The receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) was used to compare the area under the ROC curve (AUC) of each index. The sensitivity, specificity, Youden’s index and cut-offs of each index for the screening of MetS were calculated. Results: According to the IDF, ATP III and JIS criteria, 18.61%, 10.51%, and 24.83% of males and 23.25%, 14.88%, and 25.33% of females had MetS. According to the IDF criteria, the waist-to-height ratio (WHtR) was the index that most accurately identified individuals with and without MetS both in males (AUC = 0.872) and females (AUC = 0.804), with the optimal cut-offs of 0.53 and 0.52, respectively. According to both the ATP III and JIS criteria, the lipid accumulation product (LAP) was the best index to discriminate between individuals with and without MetS in males (AUC = 0.856 and 0.816, respectively) and females (AUC = 0.832 and 0.788, respectively), with optimal cut-offs of 41.21 and 34.76 in males and 28.16 and 26.49 in females, respectively. On the basis of the IDF standard, Youden’s indices of WHtR and LAP serial tests for the screening of MetS were 0.590 and 0.455 in males and females, respectively, and those of WHtR and LAP parallel tests were 0.608 and 0.479, accordingly. Conclusion: According to the IDF, ATP III and JIS

  7. Screening for Barrett's Esophagus.

    PubMed

    di Pietro, Massimiliano; Chan, Daniel; Fitzgerald, Rebecca C; Wang, Kenneth K

    2015-05-01

    The large increase in the incidence of esophageal adenocarcinoma in the West during the past 30 years has stimulated interest in screening for Barrett's esophagus (BE), a precursor to esophageal cancer. Effective endoscopic treatments for dysplasia and intramucosal cancer, coupled with screening programs to detect BE, could help reverse the increase in the incidence of esophageal cancer. However, there are no accurate, cost-effective, minimally invasive techniques available to screen for BE, reducing the enthusiasm of gastroenterologists. Over the past 5 years, there has been significant progress in the development of screening technologies. We review existing and developing technologies, new minimally invasive imaging techniques, nonendoscopic devices for cell collection, and biomarkers that can be measured in blood or stool samples. We discuss the status of these approaches, data from clinical studies of their effects, and their anticipated strengths and weaknesses in screening. The area is rapidly evolving, and new tools will soon be ready for prime time. PMID:25701083

  8. Health informatics and information system: an integrated evidence-base tool for colorectal cancer screening.

    PubMed

    Elham, Maserat; Nasraran, Zali; Reza, Zali Mohamad

    2008-01-01

    Application of health informatics, especially for screening process of colorectal cancer, is a most effective and cost efficient method for monitoring, management and prevention of disease. Information systems have capability for sharing and integration of information among the many stakeholders involved in colorectal cancer control (participant, family physician, specialist, hospitals, laboratories, and pharmacist). In this paper, we provide comprehensive survey applications and functions of health informatics and information systems in preventing colorectal cancer and management of screening process. Furthermore, we cover different models, infrastructures and standards for reporting and distribution of information at the international level, with due attention to security and privacy issues. The information furnished in this article was collected from valid medical databases by medical librarians.

  9. Genetic taste responses to 6-n-propylthiouracil among adults: a screening tool for epidemiological studies.

    PubMed

    Drewnowski, A; Kristal, A; Cohen, J

    2001-06-01

    Genetically mediated taste responsiveness to 6-n-propylthiouracil (PROP) has been linked to reduced acceptance of some bitter foods. In this community-based study male (n = 364) and female (n = 378) adults enrolled in a self-help dietary intervention trial were screened for PROP taster status. Respondents, aged 18--70 years, were mailed filter papers impregnated with PROP or with aspartame solutions. They received instructions to rate taste intensity and hedonic preference using nine point category scales. Women rated PROP as more bitter than did men. Both sweetness and bitterness ratings were lower for older adults. Taste responsiveness to PROP was unrelated to body mass index in women or men. Higher bitterness ratings for PROP were weakly associated with higher sweetness ratings for aspartame, but were unrelated to sweet taste preferences. Successful administration of PROP filter papers by mail suggests new avenues for the screening of taste phenotypes in epidemiological studies.

  10. Multidimensional Reaction Screening for Photochemical Transformations as a Tool for Discovering New Chemotypes

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    We have developed an automated photochemical microfluidics platform that integrates a 1 kW high-pressure Hg vapor lamp and allows for analytical pulse flow or preparative continuous flow reactions. Herein, we will discuss the use of this platform toward the discovery of new chemotypes through multidimensional reaction screening. We will highlight the ability to discretely control wavelengths with optical filters, allowing for control of reaction outcomes. PMID:24697145

  11. Fluorescence-based assay as a new screening tool for toxic chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Moczko, Ewa; Mirkes, Evgeny M.; Cáceres, César; Gorban, Alexander N.; Piletsky, Sergey

    2016-01-01

    Our study involves development of fluorescent cell-based diagnostic assay as a new approach in high-throughput screening method. This highly sensitive optical assay operates similarly to e-noses and e-tongues which combine semi-specific sensors and multivariate data analysis for monitoring biochemical processes. The optical assay consists of a mixture of environmental-sensitive fluorescent dyes and human skin cells that generate fluorescence spectra patterns distinctive for particular physico-chemical and physiological conditions. Using chemometric techniques the optical signal is processed providing qualitative information about analytical characteristics of the samples. This integrated approach has been successfully applied (with sensitivity of 93% and specificity of 97%) in assessing whether particular chemical agents are irritating or not for human skin. It has several advantages compared with traditional biochemical or biological assays and can impact the new way of high-throughput screening and understanding cell activity. It also can provide reliable and reproducible method for assessing a risk of exposing people to different harmful substances, identification active compounds in toxicity screening and safety assessment of drugs, cosmetic or their specific ingredients. PMID:27653274

  12. Fluorescence-based assay as a new screening tool for toxic chemicals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moczko, Ewa; Mirkes, Evgeny M.; Cáceres, César; Gorban, Alexander N.; Piletsky, Sergey

    2016-09-01

    Our study involves development of fluorescent cell-based diagnostic assay as a new approach in high-throughput screening method. This highly sensitive optical assay operates similarly to e-noses and e-tongues which combine semi-specific sensors and multivariate data analysis for monitoring biochemical processes. The optical assay consists of a mixture of environmental-sensitive fluorescent dyes and human skin cells that generate fluorescence spectra patterns distinctive for particular physico-chemical and physiological conditions. Using chemometric techniques the optical signal is processed providing qualitative information about analytical characteristics of the samples. This integrated approach has been successfully applied (with sensitivity of 93% and specificity of 97%) in assessing whether particular chemical agents are irritating or not for human skin. It has several advantages compared with traditional biochemical or biological assays and can impact the new way of high-throughput screening and understanding cell activity. It also can provide reliable and reproducible method for assessing a risk of exposing people to different harmful substances, identification active compounds in toxicity screening and safety assessment of drugs, cosmetic or their specific ingredients.

  13. Automated frequency domain analysis of oxygen saturation as a screening tool for SAHS.

    PubMed

    Morillo, Daniel Sánchez; Gross, Nicole; León, Antonio; Crespo, Luis F

    2012-09-01

    Sleep apnea-hypopnea syndrome (SAHS) is significantly underdiagnosed and new screening systems are needed. The analysis of oxygen desaturation has been proposed as a screening method. However, when oxygen saturation (SpO(2)) is used as a standalone single channel device, algorithms working in time domain achieve either a high sensitivity or a high specificity, but not usually both. This limitation arises from the dependence of time-domain analysis on absolute SpO(2) values and the lack of standardized thresholds defined as pathological. The aim of this study is to assess the degree of concordance between SAHS screening using offline frequency domain processing of SpO(2) signals and the apnea-hypopnea index (AHI), and the diagnostic performance of such a new method. SpO(2) signals from 115 subjects were analyzed. Data were divided in a training data set (37) and a test set (78). Power spectral density was calculated and related to the desaturation index scored by physicians. A frequency desaturation index (FDI) was then estimated and its accuracy compared to the classical desaturation index and to the apnea-hypopnea index. The findings point to a high diagnostic agreement: the best sensitivity and specificity values obtained were 83.33% and 80.44%, respectively. Moreover, the proposed method does not rely on absolute SpO(2) values and is highly robust to artifacts.

  14. HiTSelect: a comprehensive tool for high-complexity-pooled screen analysis.

    PubMed

    Diaz, Aaron A; Qin, Han; Ramalho-Santos, Miguel; Song, Jun S

    2015-02-18

    Genetic screens of an unprecedented scale have recently been made possible by the availability of high-complexity libraries of synthetic oligonucleotides designed to mediate either gene knockdown or gene knockout, coupled with next-generation sequencing. However, several sources of random noise and statistical biases complicate the interpretation of the resulting high-throughput data. We developed HiTSelect, a comprehensive analysis pipeline for rigorously selecting screen hits and identifying functionally relevant genes and pathways by addressing off-target effects, controlling for variance in both gene silencing efficiency and sequencing depth of coverage and integrating relevant metadata. We document the superior performance of HiTSelect using data from both genome-wide RNAi and CRISPR/Cas9 screens. HiTSelect is implemented as an open-source package, with a user-friendly interface for data visualization and pathway exploration. Binary executables are available at http://sourceforge.net/projects/hitselect/, and the source code is available at https://github.com/diazlab/HiTSelect. PMID:25428347

  15. Offer of rapid testing and alternative biological samples as practical tools to implement HIV screening programs.

    PubMed

    Parisi, Maria Rita; Soldini, Laura; Di Perri, Giovanni; Tiberi, Simon; Lazzarin, Adriano; Lillo, Flavia B

    2009-10-01

    Implementation of HIV testing has the objective to increase screening, identify and counsel persons with infection, link them to clinical services and reduce transmission. Rapid tests and/or alternative biological samples (like oral fluid) give the option for a better general consent in approaching screening, immediate referral of HIV positives to medical treatment and partner notification. We tested the performance characteristics of an oral fluid-based rapid HIV test (Rapidtest HIV lateral flow-Healthchem diag. LLC) in comparison with routinely utilized methods in a selected population of known positive (N = 121) or negative (N = 754) subjects. The sensitivity of the rapid test was 99.1% (one false negative sample) and the specificity 98.8%. Five negatives showed a faint reactivity, 3 of these were reactive also in the reference test, one with a p24 only reaction in Western blot. If these 3 samples were excluded from the analysis the specificity increases to 99.2%. Results from our study confirm that, although a continuous improvement of the test performance is still needed to minimize false negative and positive results, rapid test and alternative biological samples may contribute to HIV prevention strategies by reaching a larger population particularly when and where regular screening procedures are difficult to obtain. PMID:20128446

  16. Power Reflectance as a Screening Tool for the Diagnosis of Superior Semicircular Canal Dehiscence

    PubMed Central

    Merchant, Gabrielle R.; Röösli, Christof; Niesten, Marlien E. F.; Hamade, Mohamad A.; Lee, Daniel J.; McKinnon, Melissa L.; Ulku, Cagatay H.; Rosowski, John J.; Merchant, Saumil N.; Nakajima, Hideko Heidi

    2014-01-01

    Hypothesis Power reflectance (PR) measurements in ears with Superior Canal Dehiscence (SCD) have a characteristic pattern, whose detection can assist in diagnosis. Background The aim of this study is to determine if PR coupled with a novel detection algorithm can perform well as a fast, non-invasive, and easy screening test for SCD. The screening test is to determine if patients with various vestibular and/or auditory symptom(s) should be further considered for more expensive and invasive tests that better define the diagnosis of SCD (and other third-window lesions). Methods PR was measured in patients diagnosed with SCD by high-resolution CT. The study included 40 ears from 32 patients with varying symptoms (e.g., with and without conductive hearing loss, vestibular symptoms, and abnormal auditory sensations). Results PR results were compared to previously published norms, and showed that SCD is commonly associated with a PR notch near 1 kHz. An analysis algorithm was designed to detect such notches and to quantify their incidence in affected and normal ears. Various notch detection thresholds yielded sensitivities of 80%–93%, specificities of 69%–72%, negative predictive value of 84%–93% and positive predictive value of 67%. Conclusion This study shows evidence that PR measurements together with the proposed notch-detecting algorithm can be used to quickly and effectively screen patients for third-window lesions such as SCD in the early stages of a diagnostic workup. PMID:25076227

  17. Pilot study to investigate the feasibility of the Home Falls and Accidents Screening Tool (HOME FAST) to identify older Malaysian people at risk of falls

    PubMed Central

    Romli, Muhammad Hibatullah; Mackenzie, Lynette; Lovarini, Meryl; Tan, Maw Pin

    2016-01-01

    Objective The relationship between home hazards and falls in older Malaysian people is not yet fully understood. No tools to evaluate the Malaysian home environment currently exist. Therefore, this study aimed to pilot the Home Falls and Accidents Screening Tool (HOME FAST) to identify hazards in Malaysian homes, to evaluate the feasibility of using the HOME FAST in the Malaysian Elders Longitudinal Research (MELoR) study and to gather preliminary data about the experience of falls among a small sample of Malaysian older people. Design A cross-sectional pilot study was conducted. Setting An urban setting in Kuala Lumpur. Participants 26 older people aged 60 and over were recruited from the control group of a related research project in Malaysia, in addition to older people known to the researchers. Primary outcome measure The HOME FAST was applied with the baseline survey for the MELoR study via a face-to-face interview and observation of the home by research staff. Results The majority of the participants were female, of Malay or Chinese ethnicity and living with others in a double-storeyed house. Falls were reported in the previous year by 19% and 80% of falls occurred at home. Gender and fear of falling had the strongest associations with home hazards. Most hazards were detected in the bathroom area. A small number of errors were detected in the HOME FAST ratings by researchers. Conclusions The HOME FAST is feasible as a research and clinical tool for the Malaysian context and is appropriate for use in the MELoR study. Home hazards were prevalent in the homes of older people and further research with the larger MELoR sample is needed to confirm the validity of using the HOME FAST in Malaysia. Training in the use of the HOME FAST is needed to ensure accurate use by researchers. PMID:27531736

  18. Chemiluminescence analyzer of NOx as a high-throughput screening tool in selective catalytic reduction of NO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oh, Kwang Seok; Woo, Seong Ihl

    2011-10-01

    A chemiluminescence-based analyzer of NOx gas species has been applied for high-throughput screening of a library of catalytic materials. The applicability of the commercial NOx analyzer as a rapid screening tool was evaluated using selective catalytic reduction of NO gas. A library of 60 binary alloys composed of Pt and Co, Zr, La, Ce, Fe or W on Al2O3 substrate was tested for the efficiency of NOx removal using a home-built 64-channel parallel and sequential tubular reactor. The NOx concentrations measured by the NOx analyzer agreed well with the results obtained using micro gas chromatography for a reference catalyst consisting of 1 wt% Pt on γ-Al2O3. Most alloys showed high efficiency at 275 °C, which is typical of Pt-based catalysts for selective catalytic reduction of NO. The screening with NOx analyzer allowed to select Pt-Ce(X) (X=1-3) and Pt-Fe(2) as the optimal catalysts for NOx removal: 73% NOx conversion was achieved with the Pt-Fe(2) alloy, which was much better than the results for the reference catalyst and the other library alloys. This study demonstrates a sequential high-throughput method of practical evaluation of catalysts for the selective reduction of NO.

  19. A Query Tool for Investigator Access to the Data and Images of the National Lung Screening Trial.

    PubMed

    Commean, Paul K; Rathmell, Joshua M; Clark, Ken W; Maffitt, Dave R; Prior, Fred W

    2015-08-01

    The National Cancer Institute (NCI), in conjunction with blinded university, provides a mechanism to enable public access to the study data, CT radiology images, and pathology images from the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST). Access to the data and images is through the NCI-sponsored, blinded university-hosted The Cancer Imaging Archive (TCIA), a repository of more than 40 study collections of cancer images. Once access to the NLST data has been granted by NCI, a Query Tool within TCIA is used to access the NLST data and images. The Query Tool is a simple-to-use menu-driven database application designed to quickly pose queries and retrieve/save results (from 53,452 NLST participants), download CT images (~20 million available), and view pathology images (~1200 available). NLST study data are contained in 17 Query Tool tables with ~370 variables to query. This paper describes Query Tool design, functionality, and usefulness for researchers, clinicians, and software developers to query data, save query results, and download/view images. PMID:25739345

  20. A Query Tool for Investigator Access to the Data and Images of the National Lung Screening Trial.

    PubMed

    Commean, Paul K; Rathmell, Joshua M; Clark, Ken W; Maffitt, Dave R; Prior, Fred W

    2015-08-01

    The National Cancer Institute (NCI), in conjunction with blinded university, provides a mechanism to enable public access to the study data, CT radiology images, and pathology images from the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST). Access to the data and images is through the NCI-sponsored, blinded university-hosted The Cancer Imaging Archive (TCIA), a repository of more than 40 study collections of cancer images. Once access to the NLST data has been granted by NCI, a Query Tool within TCIA is used to access the NLST data and images. The Query Tool is a simple-to-use menu-driven database application designed to quickly pose queries and retrieve/save results (from 53,452 NLST participants), download CT images (~20 million available), and view pathology images (~1200 available). NLST study data are contained in 17 Query Tool tables with ~370 variables to query. This paper describes Query Tool design, functionality, and usefulness for researchers, clinicians, and software developers to query data, save query results, and download/view images.

  1. A Novel Geriatric Screening Tool in Older Patients with Cancer: The Korean Cancer Study Group Geriatric Score (KG)-7.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jin Won; Kim, Se-Hyun; Kim, Yu Jung; Lee, Keun-Wook; Kim, Kwang-Il; Lee, Jong Seok; Kim, Cheol-Ho; Kim, Jee Hyun

    2015-01-01

    Geriatric assessment (GA) is resource-consuming, necessitating screening tools to select appropriate patients who need full GA. The objective of this study is to design a novel geriatric screening tool with easy-to-answer questions and high performance objectively selected from a large dataset to represent each domain of GA. A development cohort was constructed from 1284 patients who received GA from May 2004 to April 2007. Items representing each domain of functional status, cognitive function, nutritional status, and psychological status in GA were selected according to sensitivity (SE) and specificity (SP). Of the selected items, the final questions were chosen by a panel of oncologists and geriatricians to encompass most domains evenly and also by feasibility and use with cancer patients. The selected screening questions were validated in a separate cohort of 98 cancer patients. The novel screening tool, the Korean Cancer Study Group Geriatric Score (KG)-7, consisted of 7 items representing each domain of GA. KG-7 had a maximal area under the curve (AUC) of 0.93 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.92-0.95) in the prediction of abnormal GA, which was higher than that of G-8 (0.87, 95% CI 0.85-0.89) within the development cohort. The cut-off value was decided at ≤ 5 points, with a SE of 95.0%, SP of 59.2%, positive predictive value (PPV) of 85.3%, and negative predictive value (NPV) of 82.6%. In the validation cohort, the AUC was 0.82 (95% CI 0.73-0.90), and the SE, SP, PPV, and NPV were 89.5%, 48.6%, 77.3%, and 75.0%, respectively. Furthermore, patients with higher KG-7 scores showed significantly longer overall survival (OS) in the development and validation cohorts. In conclusions, the KG-7 showed high SE and NPV to predict abnormal GA. The KG-7 also predicted OS. Given the results of our studies, the KG-7 could be used effectively in countries with high patient burden and low resources to select patients in need of full GA and intervention. PMID:26401951

  2. A Novel Geriatric Screening Tool in Older Patients with Cancer: The Korean Cancer Study Group Geriatric Score (KG)-7

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jin Won; Kim, Se-Hyun; Kim, Yu Jung; Lee, Keun-Wook; Kim, Kwang-Il; Lee, Jong Seok; Kim, Cheol-Ho; Kim, Jee Hyun

    2015-01-01

    Geriatric assessment (GA) is resource-consuming, necessitating screening tools to select appropriate patients who need full GA. The objective of this study is to design a novel geriatric screening tool with easy-to-answer questions and high performance objectively selected from a large dataset to represent each domain of GA. A development cohort was constructed from 1284 patients who received GA from May 2004 to April 2007. Items representing each domain of functional status, cognitive function, nutritional status, and psychological status in GA were selected according to sensitivity (SE) and specificity (SP). Of the selected items, the final questions were chosen by a panel of oncologists and geriatricians to encompass most domains evenly and also by feasibility and use with cancer patients. The selected screening questions were validated in a separate cohort of 98 cancer patients. The novel screening tool, the Korean Cancer Study Group Geriatric Score (KG)-7, consisted of 7 items representing each domain of GA. KG-7 had a maximal area under the curve (AUC) of 0.93 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.92−0.95) in the prediction of abnormal GA, which was higher than that of G-8 (0.87, 95% CI 0.85–0.89) within the development cohort. The cut-off value was decided at ≤ 5 points, with a SE of 95.0%, SP of 59.2%, positive predictive value (PPV) of 85.3%, and negative predictive value (NPV) of 82.6%. In the validation cohort, the AUC was 0.82 (95% CI 0.73−0.90), and the SE, SP, PPV, and NPV were 89.5%, 48.6%, 77.3%, and 75.0%, respectively. Furthermore, patients with higher KG-7 scores showed significantly longer overall survival (OS) in the development and validation cohorts. In conclusions, the KG-7 showed high SE and NPV to predict abnormal GA. The KG-7 also predicted OS. Given the results of our studies, the KG-7 could be used effectively in countries with high patient burden and low resources to select patients in need of full GA and intervention. PMID:26401951

  3. Construction and preliminary evaluation of an Aspergillus flavus reporter gene construct as a potential tool for screening aflatoxin resistance.

    PubMed

    Brown, Robert L; Brown-Jenco, Carmen S; Bhatnagar, Deepak; Payne, Gary A

    2003-10-01

    Effective preharvest strategies to eliminate aflatoxin accumulation in crops are not presently available. The molecular biology of aflatoxin biosynthesis has been extensively studied, and genetic and molecular tools such as reporter gene systems for the measurement of fungal growth have been developed. A reporter construct containing the Aspergillus flavus beta-tubulin gene promoter fused to Escherichia coli beta-glucuronidase (GUS) has been shown to be a reliable tool for the indirect measurement of fungal growth in maize kernels. Since cost-saving alternative methods for the direct measurement of aflatoxin levels are needed to facilitate more widespread field and laboratory screening of maize lines, a new reporter gene construct involving the promoter region of the omtA gene of the aflatoxin biosynthetic pathway was constructed and tested. Expression of GUS activity by this construct (omtA::GUS) was correlated with aflatoxin accumulation in culture. In the fungal transformant GAP26-1, which harbors this construct, aflatoxin production and GUS expression on sucrose-containing medium showed the same temporal pattern of toxin induction. Furthermore, GUS expression by GAP26-1 was shown to be associated with aflatoxin accumulation in maize kernels inoculated with this strain. Our results suggest that this and other reporter gene pathway promoter constructs may provide superior alternatives to direct aflatoxin quantification with respect to time, labor, and materials for the screening of maize lines for resistance to aflatoxin accumulation. PMID:14572235

  4. The International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) Is an Inadequate Tool to Screen for Urethral Stricture Recurrence After Anterior Urethroplasty

    PubMed Central

    Tam, Christopher A.; Elliott, Sean P.; Voelzke, Bryan B.; Myers, Jeremy B.; Vanni, Alex J.; Breyer, Benjamin N.; Smith, Thomas G.; McClung, Christopher D.; Erickson, Bradley A.

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE To validate the use of the International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) as a stand-alone tool to detect urethral stricture recurrence following urethroplasty. MATERIALS AND METHODS This study included 393 men who had undergone anterior urethroplasty and were enrolled in a multi-institutional outcomes study. Data analyzed included pre- and post-operative answers to the IPSS in addition to findings from a same- day cystoscopy. IPSS from men found to have cystoscopic recurrence were then compared to scores from those with successful repairs, and receiver operating characteristic curves were plotted to illustrate the predictive ability of these questions to screen for cystoscopic recurrence. RESULTS Mean postoperative scores were lower (fewer symptoms) in successful repairs; IPSS improved from preoperative values regardless of recurrence. Successful repairs had significantly better degree of improvement in question #5 (assessing weak stream) compared to recurrences. Receiver operating characteristic curves demonstrated the highest area under the curve for the IPSS quality of life question (0.66) that alone outperformed the complete IPSS questionnaire (0.56). CONCLUSION The IPSS had inadequate sensitivity and specificity to be used as a stand-alone screening tool for stricture recurrence in this large cohort of men, highlighting the need to continue development of a disease-specific, validated patient-reported outcome measure. PMID:27109599

  5. Evaluation of the Pediatric Symptom Checklist as a screening tool for the identification of emotional and psychosocial problems

    PubMed Central

    Muzzolon, Sandra Regina B.; Cat, Mônica Nunes L.; dos Santos, Lúcia Helena C.

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVE To investigate the Brazilian version of Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PSC) as a screening tool to identify psychosocial and emotional problems in schoolchildren from six to 12 years old. METHODS Diagnostic test conducted in a public school of Curitiba, Paraná (Southern Brazil), to evaluate the PSC accuracy and consistency, considering the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) as the gold standard. Among 415 parents invited for the study, 145 responded to both PSC and CBCL. The results of the two instruments were compared. PSC and CBCL were considered positive if scores ≥28 and >70 respectively. RESULTS Among the 145 cases, 49 (33.8%) were positive for both PSC and CBCL. The ROC curve showed the PSC score of 21 as the best cutoff point for screening psychosocial and emotional problems, with a sensitivity of 96.8% and a specificity of 86.7%. Regarding the reference cutoff (score ≥28 points), the sensitivity was 64.5% and the specificity, 100.0%, similar to those found in the original version of the tool. CONCLUSIONS The Portuguese version of PSC was effective for early identification of emotional and/or psychosocial problems in a schoolchildren group and may be useful for pediatricians. PMID:24142319

  6. Association between the Family Nutrition and Physical Activity screening tool and cardiovascular disease risk factors in 10-year old children

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yee, Kimbo Edward

    Purpose. To examine the association of the Family Nutrition and Physical Activity (FNPA) screening tool, a behaviorally based screening tool designed to assess the obesogenic family environment and behaviors, with cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors in 10-year old children. Methods. One hundred nineteen children were assessed for body mass index (BMI), percent body fat (%BF), waist circumference (WC), total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, and resting blood pressure. A continuous CVD risk score was created using total cholesterol to HDL-cholesterol ratio (TC:HDL), mean arterial pressure (MAP), and WC. The FNPA survey was completed by parents. The associations between the FNPA score and individual CVD risk factors and the continuous CVD risk score were examined using correlation analyses. Results. Approximately 35% of the sample were overweight (19%) or obese (16%). The mean FNPA score was 24.6 +/- 2.5 (range 18 to 29). Significant correlations were found between the FNPA score and WC (r = -.35, p<.01), BMI percentile (r = -.38, p<.01), %BF (r = -.43, p<.01), and the continuous CVD risk score (r = -.22, p = .02). No significant association was found between the FNPA score and TC:HDL (r=0.10, p=0.88) or MAP (r=-0.12, p=0.20). Conclusion. Children from a high-risk, obesogenic family environment as indicated with a lower FNPA score have a higher CVD risk factor profile than children from a low-risk family environment.

  7. Avoidance tests with Collembola and earthworms as early screening tools for site-specific assessment of polluted soils.

    PubMed

    da Luz, Tiago Natal; Ribeiro, Rui; Sousa, José Paulo

    2004-09-01

    Avoidance tests with earthworms and collembolans were conducted to demonstrate their feasibility as early screening tools for assessing the toxic potential of metal-polluted soils. Four different soils, with different degrees of metal contamination, were obtained from an abandoned mining area. All possible paired combinations were assessed for an avoidance response by the organisms. Data revealed that both species were able to avoid the most contaminated soils at the center of the ore extraction and treatment areas compared to those collected further away from the mine. However, earthworms and springtails differed in sensitivity to metals, especially when testing the two most polluted soils that had different contamination profiles. Earthworms exhibited a more consistent, less variable response than springtails. Overall results showed that avoidance tests with collembolans and earthworms have the potential to be used as screening tools in ecological risk assessment schemes for contaminated land, to trigger other tests in case of concern. However, further method development is needed to reduce variability in the data, particularly in the Collembola assays, and to gain knowledge about the possible effects of soil properties on the outcome of the tests. PMID:15378996

  8. Construction and preliminary evaluation of an Aspergillus flavus reporter gene construct as a potential tool for screening aflatoxin resistance.

    PubMed

    Brown, Robert L; Brown-Jenco, Carmen S; Bhatnagar, Deepak; Payne, Gary A

    2003-10-01

    Effective preharvest strategies to eliminate aflatoxin accumulation in crops are not presently available. The molecular biology of aflatoxin biosynthesis has been extensively studied, and genetic and molecular tools such as reporter gene systems for the measurement of fungal growth have been developed. A reporter construct containing the Aspergillus flavus beta-tubulin gene promoter fused to Escherichia coli beta-glucuronidase (GUS) has been shown to be a reliable tool for the indirect measurement of fungal growth in maize kernels. Since cost-saving alternative methods for the direct measurement of aflatoxin levels are needed to facilitate more widespread field and laboratory screening of maize lines, a new reporter gene construct involving the promoter region of the omtA gene of the aflatoxin biosynthetic pathway was constructed and tested. Expression of GUS activity by this construct (omtA::GUS) was correlated with aflatoxin accumulation in culture. In the fungal transformant GAP26-1, which harbors this construct, aflatoxin production and GUS expression on sucrose-containing medium showed the same temporal pattern of toxin induction. Furthermore, GUS expression by GAP26-1 was shown to be associated with aflatoxin accumulation in maize kernels inoculated with this strain. Our results suggest that this and other reporter gene pathway promoter constructs may provide superior alternatives to direct aflatoxin quantification with respect to time, labor, and materials for the screening of maize lines for resistance to aflatoxin accumulation.

  9. Autism detection in early childhood (ADEC): reliability and validity data for a Level 2 screening tool for autistic disorder.

    PubMed

    Nah, Yong-Hwee; Young, Robyn L; Brewer, Neil; Berlingeri, Genna

    2014-03-01

    The Autism Detection in Early Childhood (ADEC; Young, 2007) was developed as a Level 2 clinician-administered autistic disorder (AD) screening tool that was time-efficient, suitable for children under 3 years, easy to administer, and suitable for persons with minimal training and experience with AD. A best estimate clinical Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed., text rev.; DSM-IV-TR; American Psychiatric Association, 2000) diagnosis of AD was made for 70 children using all available information and assessment results, except for the ADEC data. A screening study compared these children on the ADEC with 57 children with other developmental disorders and 64 typically developing children. Results indicated high internal consistency (α = .91). Interrater reliability and test-retest reliability of the ADEC were also adequate. ADEC scores reliably discriminated different diagnostic groups after controlling for nonverbal IQ and Vineland Adaptive Behavior Composite scores. Construct validity (using exploratory factor analysis) and concurrent validity using performance on the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (Lord et al., 2000), the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (Le Couteur, Lord, & Rutter, 2003), and DSM-IV-TR criteria were also demonstrated. Signal detection analysis identified the optimal ADEC cutoff score, with the ADEC identifying all children who had an AD (N = 70, sensitivity = 1.0) but overincluding children with other disabilities (N = 13, specificity ranging from .74 to .90). Together, the reliability and validity data indicate that the ADEC has potential to be established as a suitable and efficient screening tool for infants with AD.

  10. A Comprehensive Review of School-Based Body Mass Index Screening Programs and Their Implications for School Health: Do the Controversies Accurately Reflect the Research?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruggieri, Dominique G.; Bass, Sarah B.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Whereas legislation for body mass index (BMI) surveillance and screening programs has passed in 25 states, the programs are often subject to ethical debates about confidentiality and privacy, school-to-parent communication, and safety and self-esteem issues for students. Despite this debate, no comprehensive analysis has been completed…

  11. EVALUATING POLLUTION PREVENTION PROGRESS (P2P) III: AN ENVIRONMENTAL TOOL FOR SCREENING IN PRODUCT LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT AND CHEMICAL PROCESS DESIGN

    EPA Science Inventory

    P2P is a computer-based tool that supports the comparison of process and product alternatives in terms of environmental impacts. This tool provides screening-level information for use in process design and in product LCA. Twenty one impact categories and data for approximately ...

  12. Evaluation of the annual killifish Nothobranchius guentheri as a tool for rapid acute toxicity screening

    SciTech Connect

    Shedd, T.R.; Widder, M.W.; Toussaint, M.W.; Sunkel, M.C.; Hull, E.

    1999-10-01

    This study evaluated the use of Nothobranchius guentheri as a novel organism for rapid acute toxicity screening. A major advantage of the species is that there is no need to maintain a continuous culture to have organisms immediately available for testing. Rather, the embryos are viable under long-term storage conditions and can be hatched within a few hours. The tests require only 24 h with standard laboratory equipment. Sensitivity levels for 11 representative toxicants were comparable to those reported for five of the standard US Environmental Protection Agency test species requiring continuous culture.

  13. Certify, Blink, Hire: An Examination of the Process and Tools of Teacher Screening and Selection

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rutledge, Stacey A.; Harris, Douglas N.; Thompson, Cynthia T.; Ingle, W. Kyle

    2008-01-01

    While much has been written about the process of employee selection in other occupations, there has been little discussion on the process and tools of teacher selection and why it occurs as it does. To understand this question, we conduct an extensive literature review in which we compare teacher hiring with hiring in other occupations. We also…

  14. Magnetic Resonance Imaging and GeneXpert: A Rapid and Accurate Diagnostic Tool for the Management of Tuberculosis of the Spine

    PubMed Central

    Chhabra, Harvinder Singh; Mahajan, Rajat; Chabra, Tarun; Batra, Sahil

    2016-01-01

    Study Design Retrospective study. Purpose The aim of this study was to analyze various diagnostic tools, including GeneXpert, for the management of tuberculosis of the spine. Overview of Literature Traditional diagnostic methods of microscopy, histology, and culture have low sensitivity and specificity for the management of tuberculosis of the spine. Methods Of the 262 treated cases of spinal tuberculosis, data on 1 year follow-up was available for 217 cases. Of these, only 145 cases with a confirmed diagnosis were selected for retrospective analysis. Results In 145 of the 217 patients (66.80%), diagnosis was confirmed on the basis of a culture. Of the 145 patients with a confirmed diagnosis, 98 (66.20%) patients were diagnosed on the basis of clinical presentation, whereas 123 (84.8%) exhibited a typical magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) picture. In 99 surgically treated patients, the diagnosis was confirmed on the basis of an intraoperative tissue biopsy. Among the 46 patients treated conservatively, 35 underwent a transpedicular biopsy, 4 patients underwent computed tomography-guided biopsy, 6 patients were diagnosed on the basis of material obtained from a cold abscess, and 1 patient underwent an open biopsy. The sensitivity of the culture for the detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis was 66.80% (145/217) in our patients. Among the cases in which GeneXpert was used, the sensitivity for the detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis was 93.4% (43/46). Moreover, the sensitivity of GeneXpert to detect rifampicin resistance was 100% (7/7) in our study. Conclusions Majority of the patients with tuberculosis of the spine can be diagnosed on the basis of a typical radiological presentation via MRI. In our study, 84.8% cases exhibited typical MRI findings. For patients presenting with atypical MRI features, a rapid and accurate diagnosis is possible by combining GeneXpert with MRI. The combined use of MRI and GeneXpert is a rapid and highly sensitive tool to diagnose

  15. Is amino acid racemization a useful tool for screening for ancient DNA in bone?

    PubMed Central

    Collins, Matthew J.; Penkman, Kirsty E. H.; Rohland, Nadin; Shapiro, Beth; Dobberstein, Reimer C.; Ritz-Timme, Stefanie; Hofreiter, Michael

    2009-01-01

    Many rare and valuable ancient specimens now carry the scars of ancient DNA research, as questions of population genetics and phylogeography require larger sample sets. This fuels the demand for reliable techniques to screen for DNA preservation prior to destructive sampling. Only one such technique has been widely adopted: the extent of aspartic acid racemization (AAR). The kinetics of AAR are believed to be similar to the rate of DNA depurination and therefore a good measure of the likelihood of DNA survival. Moreover, AAR analysis is only minimally destructive. We report the first comprehensive test of AAR using 91 bone and teeth samples from temperate and high-latitude sites that were analysed for DNA. While the AAR range of all specimens was low (0.02–0.17), no correlation was found between the extent of AAR and DNA amplification success. Additional heating experiments and surveys of the literature indicated that d/l Asx is low in bones until almost all the collagen is lost. This is because aspartic acid is retained in the bone within the constrained environment of the collagen triple helix, where it cannot racemize for steric reasons. Only if the helix denatures to soluble gelatin can Asx racemize readily, but this soluble gelatine is readily lost in most burial environments. We conclude that Asx d/l is not a useful screening technique for ancient DNA from bone. PMID:19493899

  16. Chlorophyll Fluorescence as a Possible Tool for Salinity Tolerance Screening in Barley (Hordeum vulgare L.).

    PubMed Central

    Belkhodja, R.; Morales, F.; Abadia, A.; Gomez-Aparisi, J.; Abadia, J.

    1994-01-01

    The application of chlorophyll fluorescence measurements to screening barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) genotypes for salinity tolerance has been investigated. Excised barley leaves were cut under water and incubated with the cut end immersed in water or in a 100-mM NaCl solution, either in the dark or in high light. Changes in rapid fluorescence kinetics occurred in excised barley leaves exposed to the saline solution only when the incubation was carried out in the presence of high light. Fluorescence changes consisted of decreases in the variable to maximum fluorescence ratio and in increases in the relative proportion of variable fluorescence leading to point I in the Kautsky fluorescence induction curve. These relative increases in fluorescence at point I appeared to arise from a delayed plastoquinone reoxidation in the dark, since they disappeared after short, far-red illumination, which is known to excite photosystem I preferentially. We show that a significant correlation existed between some fluorescence parameters, measured after a combined salt and high-light treatment, and other independent measurements of salinity tolerance. These results suggest that chlorophyll fluorescence, and especially the relative fluorescence at point I in the Kautsky fluorescence induction curve, could be used for the screening of barley genotypes for salinity tolerance. PMID:12232117

  17. Non-animal photosafety screening for complex cosmetic ingredients with photochemical and photobiochemical assessment tools.

    PubMed

    Nishida, Hayato; Hirota, Morihiko; Seto, Yoshiki; Suzuki, Gen; Kato, Masashi; Kitagaki, Masato; Sugiyama, Mariko; Kouzuki, Hirokazu; Onoue, Satomi

    2015-08-01

    Previously, a non-animal screening approach was proposed for evaluating photosafety of cosmetic ingredients by means of in vitro photochemical and photobiochemical assays; however, complex cosmetic ingredients, such as plant extracts and polymers, could not be evaluated because their molecular weight is often poorly defined and so their molar concentration cannot be calculated. The aim of the present investigation was to establish a photosafety screen for complex cosmetic ingredients by using appropriately modified in vitro photosafety assays. Twenty plant extracts were selected as model materials on the basis of photosafety information, and their phototoxic potentials were assessed by means of ultraviolet (UV)/visible light (VIS) spectral analysis, reactive oxygen species (ROS)/micellar ROS (mROS) assays, and 3T3 neutral red uptake phototoxicity testing (3T3 NRU PT). The maximum UV/VIS absorption value was employed as a judgment factor for evaluating photoexcitability of samples, and the value of 1.0 was adopted as a tentative criterion for photosafety identification. The ROS/mROS assays were conducted at 50 μg/mL, and no false negative prediction was obtained. Furthermore, the ROS/mROS assays at 50 μg/mL had a similar predictive capacity to the ROS/mROS assays in the previous study. A systematic tiered approach for simple and rapid non-animal photosafety evaluation of complex cosmetic ingredients can be constructed using these modified in vitro photochemical assays. PMID:26048216

  18. Non-animal photosafety screening for complex cosmetic ingredients with photochemical and photobiochemical assessment tools.

    PubMed

    Nishida, Hayato; Hirota, Morihiko; Seto, Yoshiki; Suzuki, Gen; Kato, Masashi; Kitagaki, Masato; Sugiyama, Mariko; Kouzuki, Hirokazu; Onoue, Satomi

    2015-08-01

    Previously, a non-animal screening approach was proposed for evaluating photosafety of cosmetic ingredients by means of in vitro photochemical and photobiochemical assays; however, complex cosmetic ingredients, such as plant extracts and polymers, could not be evaluated because their molecular weight is often poorly defined and so their molar concentration cannot be calculated. The aim of the present investigation was to establish a photosafety screen for complex cosmetic ingredients by using appropriately modified in vitro photosafety assays. Twenty plant extracts were selected as model materials on the basis of photosafety information, and their phototoxic potentials were assessed by means of ultraviolet (UV)/visible light (VIS) spectral analysis, reactive oxygen species (ROS)/micellar ROS (mROS) assays, and 3T3 neutral red uptake phototoxicity testing (3T3 NRU PT). The maximum UV/VIS absorption value was employed as a judgment factor for evaluating photoexcitability of samples, and the value of 1.0 was adopted as a tentative criterion for photosafety identification. The ROS/mROS assays were conducted at 50 μg/mL, and no false negative prediction was obtained. Furthermore, the ROS/mROS assays at 50 μg/mL had a similar predictive capacity to the ROS/mROS assays in the previous study. A systematic tiered approach for simple and rapid non-animal photosafety evaluation of complex cosmetic ingredients can be constructed using these modified in vitro photochemical assays.

  19. IrisPlex: a sensitive DNA tool for accurate prediction of blue and brown eye colour in the absence of ancestry information.

    PubMed

    Walsh, Susan; Liu, Fan; Ballantyne, Kaye N; van Oven, Mannis; Lao, Oscar; Kayser, Manfred

    2011-06-01

    A new era of 'DNA intelligence' is arriving in forensic biology, due to the impending ability to predict externally visible characteristics (EVCs) from biological material such as those found at crime scenes. EVC prediction from forensic samples, or from body parts, is expected to help concentrate police investigations towards finding unknown individuals, at times when conventional DNA profiling fails to provide informative leads. Here we present a robust and sensitive tool, termed IrisPlex, for the accurate prediction of blue and brown eye colour from DNA in future forensic applications. We used the six currently most eye colour-informative single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that previously revealed prevalence-adjusted prediction accuracies of over 90% for blue and brown eye colour in 6168 Dutch Europeans. The single multiplex assay, based on SNaPshot chemistry and capillary electrophoresis, both widely used in forensic laboratories, displays high levels of genotyping sensitivity with complete profiles generated from as little as 31pg of DNA, approximately six human diploid cell equivalents. We also present a prediction model to correctly classify an individual's eye colour, via probability estimation solely based on DNA data, and illustrate the accuracy of the developed prediction test on 40 individuals from various geographic origins. Moreover, we obtained insights into the worldwide allele distribution of these six SNPs using the HGDP-CEPH samples of 51 populations. Eye colour prediction analyses from HGDP-CEPH samples provide evidence that the test and model presented here perform reliably without prior ancestry information, although future worldwide genotype and phenotype data shall confirm this notion. As our IrisPlex eye colour prediction test is capable of immediate implementation in forensic casework, it represents one of the first steps forward in the creation of a fully individualised EVC prediction system for future use in forensic DNA intelligence.

  20. 2,2-Diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl as a screening tool for recombinant monoterpene biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Monoterpenes are a class of natural C10 compounds with a range of potential applications including use as fuel additives, fragrances, and chemical feedstocks. Biosynthesis of monoterpenes in heterologous systems is yet to reach commercially-viable levels, and therefore is the subject of strain engineering and fermentation optimization studies. Detection of monoterpenes typically relies on gas chromatography/mass spectrometry; this represents a significant analytical bottleneck which limits the potential to analyse combinatorial sets of conditions. To address this, we developed a high-throughput method for pre-screening monoterpene biosynthesis. Results An optimised DPPH assay was developed for detecting monoterpenes from two-phase microbial cultures using dodecane as the extraction solvent. The assay was useful for reproducible qualitative ranking of monoterpene concentrations, and detected standard preparations of myrcene and γ-terpinene dissolved in dodecane at concentrations as low as 10 and 15 μM, respectively, and limonene as low as 200 μM. The assay could not be used quantitatively due to technical difficulties in capturing the initial reaction rate in a multi-well plate and the presence of minor DPPH-reactive contaminants. Initially, limonene biosynthesis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae was tested using two different limonene synthase enzymes and three medium compositions. The assay indicated that limonene biosynthesis was enhanced in a supplemented YP medium and that the Citrus limon limonene synthase (CLLS) was more effective than the Mentha spicata limonene synthase (MSLS). GC-MS analysis revealed that the DPPH assay had correctly identified the best limonene synthase (CLLS) and culture medium (supplemented YP medium). Because only traces of limonene were detected in SD medium, we subsequently identified medium components that improved limonene production and developed a defined medium based on these findings. The best limonene titres obtained

  1. Population-based Tay-Sachs screening among Ashkenazi Jewish young adults in the 21st century: Hexosaminidase A enzyme assay is essential for accurate testing.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Adele; Nakagawa, Sachiko; Keep, Rosanne; Dorsainville, Darnelle; Charrow, Joel; Aleck, Kirk; Hoffman, Jodi; Minkoff, Sherman; Finegold, David; Sun, Wei; Spencer, Andrew; Lebow, Johannah; Zhan, Jie; Apfelroth, Stephen; Schreiber-Agus, Nicole; Gross, Susan

    2009-11-01

    Tay-Sachs disease (TSD) carrier screening, initiated in the 1970s, has reduced the birth-rate of Ashkenazi Jews with TSD worldwide by 90%. Recently, several nationwide programs have been established that provide carrier screening for the updated panel of Jewish genetic diseases on college campuses and in Jewish community settings. The goals of this study were to determine the performance characteristics of clinical TSD testing in college- and community-based screening programs and to determine if molecular testing alone is adequate in those settings. Clinical data for TSD testing were retrospectively anonymized and subsequently analyzed for 1,036 individuals who participated in these programs. The performance characteristics of the serum and the platelet Hexosaminidase assays were compared, and also correlated with the results of targeted DNA analysis. The serum assay identified 29 carriers and the platelet assay identified 35 carriers for carrier rates of 1/36 and 1/29, respectively. One hundred sixty-nine samples (16.3%) were inconclusive by serum assay in marked contrast to four inconclusive samples (0.4%) by the platelet assay. Molecular analysis alone would have missed four of the 35 carriers detected by the platelet assay, yielding a false negative rate of 11.4% with a sensitivity of 88.6%. Based on the results of this study, platelet assay was superior to serum with a minimal inconclusive rate. Due to changing demographics of the Ashkenazi Jewish population, molecular testing alone in the setting of broad-based population screening programs is not sufficient, and biochemical analysis should be the assay of choice. PMID:19876898

  2. Raman spectroscopy as a screening tool for ancient life detection on Mars.

    PubMed

    Marshall, Craig P; Marshall, Alison Olcott

    2014-12-13

    The search for sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material is one of the major life detection strategies of the astrobiological exploration programmes of National Aeronautics and Space Administration and European Space Agency (ESA). The ESA ExoMars rover scheduled for launch in 2018 will include a Raman spectrometer with the goal of detecting sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material as potential evidence of ancient life. However, sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material will yield the same Raman spectra of well-developed G and D bands whether they are synthesized biologically or non-biologically. Therefore, the origin and source of sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material cannot be elucidated by Raman spectroscopy alone. Here, we report the combined approach of Raman spectroscopy and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry biomarker analysis to Precambrian sedimentary rocks, which taken together, provides a promising new methodology for readily detecting and rapidly screening samples for immature organic material amenable to successful biomarker analysis. PMID:25368343

  3. Raman spectroscopy as a screening tool for ancient life detection on Mars.

    PubMed

    Marshall, Craig P; Marshall, Alison Olcott

    2014-12-13

    The search for sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material is one of the major life detection strategies of the astrobiological exploration programmes of National Aeronautics and Space Administration and European Space Agency (ESA). The ESA ExoMars rover scheduled for launch in 2018 will include a Raman spectrometer with the goal of detecting sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material as potential evidence of ancient life. However, sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material will yield the same Raman spectra of well-developed G and D bands whether they are synthesized biologically or non-biologically. Therefore, the origin and source of sp(2)-bonded carbonaceous material cannot be elucidated by Raman spectroscopy alone. Here, we report the combined approach of Raman spectroscopy and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry biomarker analysis to Precambrian sedimentary rocks, which taken together, provides a promising new methodology for readily detecting and rapidly screening samples for immature organic material amenable to successful biomarker analysis.

  4. Accuracy study of the main screening tools for temporomandibular disorder in children and adolescents.

    PubMed

    de Santis, Tatiana Oliveira; Motta, Lara Jansiski; Biasotto-Gonzalez, Daniela Aparecida; Mesquita-Ferrari, Raquel Agnelli; Fernandes, Kristianne Porta Santos; de Godoy, Camila Haddad Leal; Alfaya, Thays Almeida; Bussadori, Sandra Kalil

    2014-01-01

    The aims of the present study were to assess the degree of sensitivity and specificity of the screening questionnaire recommended by the American Academy of Orofacial Pain (AAOP) and the patient-history index proposed by Helkimo (modified by Fonseca) and correlate the findings with a clinical exam. All participants answered the questionnaires and were submitted to a clinical exam by a dentist who had undergone calibration training. Both the AAOP questionnaire and Helkimo index achieved low degrees of sensitivity for the detection of temporomandibular disorder (TMD), but exhibited a high degree of specificity. With regard to concordance, the AAOP questionnaire and Helkimo index both achieved low levels of agreement with the clinical exam. The different instruments available in the literature for the assessment of TMD and examined herein exhibit low sensitivity and high specificity when administered to children and adolescents stemming from difficulties in comprehension due to the age group studied and the language used in the self-explanatory questions.

  5. Evaluation of a New Self-Reported Tool for Periodontitis Screening

    PubMed Central

    Kottmann, Tanja; Schwarzenberger, Fabian; Jentsch, Holger

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Periodontitis is still highly prevalent in industrial population whereas at the same time appropriate screening programs are missing. Aim To evaluate, a self-reported questionnaire about periodontal risk factors in combination with the Periodontal Screening Index (PSI) to identify an existing need for periodontal treatment combined with the early recognition of high-risk patients. Materials and Methods Total 200 patients took part in the questionnaire based study and were examined using the PSI. Thereafter the participants were divided into two groups, subjects with periodontitis (Group 1; PSI 0-2) and subjects without periodontitis (Group 2; PSI 3-4). The answers were evaluated using a point system ranging from 0 to 8, based on known periodontal risk factors and their assumed degree of influence. Receiver-Operating Characteristic (ROC) curve analysis were applied to examine the overall discriminatory power, sensitivity, specificity and corresponding cut-off points of the self-reported periodontal disease scale. Results There was a significant difference between Group 1 and 2 concerning the majority of the inquired items (12 of 16, p<0.05). The distribution of the individual total score exhibited a high statistical significance (p<0.001) of robustness in terms of differing definitions of periodontitis. The Area Under the Curve (AUC) was 0.912 with a sensitivity of 86% and a specificity of 76%. Conclusion The questionnaire produced a reliable assessment of the individual risk (total score) and the need for periodontal treatment as well as the differentiation between gingivitis and periodontitis. Clinical relevance Patient-based data (clinical variables and periodontal risk factors of periodontitis) were adequate to make a preliminary assessment of a possible need for periodontal treatment. PMID:27504399

  6. Application of Short Screening Tools for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Korean Elderly Population

    PubMed Central

    Jang, Yu Jin; Chung, Hae Gyung; Choi, Jin Hee; Kim, Tae Yong; So, Hyung Seok

    2016-01-01

    Objective Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is often missed or incorrectly diagnosed in primary care settings. Although brief screening instruments may be useful in detecting PTSD, an adequate validation study has not been conducted with older adults. This study aimed to evaluate the reliability and validity of the Korean version of the primary care PTSD screen (PC-PTSD) and single-item PTSD screener (SIPS) in elderly veterans. Methods The PC-PTSD and SIPS assessments were translated into Korean, with a back-translation to the original language to verify accuracy. Vietnamese war veterans [separated into a PTSD group (n=41) and a non-PTSD group (n=99)] participated in several psychometric assessments, including the Korean versions of the PC-PTSD (PC-PTSD-K), SIPS (SIPS-K), a structured clinical interview from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-IV(SCID), and PTSD checklist(PCL). Results The PC-PTSD-K showed high internal consistency (Cronbach α=0.76), and the test-retest reliability of the PC-PTSD-K and SIPS-K were also high (r=0.97 and r=0.91, respectively). A total score of 3 from the PC-PTSD-K yielded the highest diagnostic efficiency, with sensitivity and specificity values of 0.90 and 0.86, respectively. The 'bothered a lot' response level from the SIPS-K showed the highest diagnostic efficiency, with sensitivity and specificity values of 0.85 and 0.89, respectively. Conclusion Our findings suggest that both PC-PTSD-K and SIPS-K have good psychometric properties with high validity and reliability for detecting PTSD symptoms in elderly Korean veterans. However, further research will be necessary to increase our understanding of PTSD characteristics in diverse groups with different types of trauma. PMID:27482241

  7. The Zebrafish Xenograft Platform: Evolution of a Novel Cancer Model and Preclinical Screening Tool.

    PubMed

    Wertman, Jaime; Veinotte, Chansey J; Dellaire, Graham; Berman, Jason N

    2016-01-01

    Animal xenografts of human cancers represent a key preclinical tool in the field of cancer research. While mouse xenografts have long been the gold standard, investigators have begun to use zebrafish (Danio rerio) xenotransplantation as a relatively rapid, robust and cost-effective in vivo model of human cancers. There are several important methodological considerations in the design of an informative and efficient zebrafish xenotransplantation experiment. Various transgenic fish strains have been created that facilitate microscopic observation, ranging from the completely transparent casper fish to the Tg(fli1:eGFP) fish that expresses fluorescent GFP protein in its vascular tissue. While human cancer cell lines have been used extensively in zebrafish xenotransplantation studies, several reports have also used primary patient samples as the donor material. The zebrafish is ideally suited for transplanting primary patient material by virtue of the relatively low number of cells required for each embryo (between 50 and 300 cells), the absence of an adaptive immune system in the early zebrafish embryo, and the short experimental timeframe (5-7 days). Following xenotransplantation into the fish, cells can be tracked using in vivo or ex vivo measures of cell proliferation and migration, facilitated by fluorescence or human-specific protein expression. Importantly, assays have been developed that allow for the reliable detection of in vivo human cancer cell growth or inhibition following administration of drugs of interest. The zebrafish xenotransplantation model is a unique and effective tool for the study of cancer cell biology.

  8. Zebrafish needle EMG: a new tool for high-throughput drug screens.

    PubMed

    Cho, Sung-Joon; Nam, Tai-Seung; Byun, Donghak; Choi, Seok-Yong; Kim, Myeong-Kyu; Kim, Sohee

    2015-09-01

    Zebrafish models have recently been highlighted as a valuable tool in studying the molecular basis of neuromuscular diseases and developing new pharmacological treatments. Needle electromyography (EMG) is needed not only for validating transgenic zebrafish models with muscular dystrophies (MD), but also for assessing the efficacy of therapeutics. However, performing needle EMG on larval zebrafish has not been feasible due to the lack of proper EMG sensors and systems for such small animals. We introduce a new type of EMG needle electrode to measure intramuscular activities of larval zebrafish, together with a method to hold the animal in position during EMG, without anesthetization. The silicon-based needle electrode was found to be sufficiently strong and sharp to penetrate the skin and muscles of zebrafish larvae, and its shape and performance did not change after multiple insertions. With the use of the proposed needle electrode and measurement system, EMG was successfully performed on zebrafish at 30 days postfertilization (dpf) and at 5 dpf. Burst patterns and spike morphology of the recorded EMG signals were analyzed. The measured single spikes were triphasic with an initial positive deflection, which is typical for motor unit action potentials, with durations of ∼10 ms, whereas the muscle activity was silent during the anesthetized condition. These findings confirmed the capability of this system of detecting EMG signals from very small animals such as 5 dpf zebrafish. The developed EMG sensor and system are expected to become a helpful tool in validating zebrafish MD models and further developing therapeutics.

  9. Zebrafish needle EMG: a new tool for high-throughput drug screens

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Sung-Joon; Nam, Tai-Seung; Byun, Donghak; Choi, Seok-Yong; Kim, Myeong-Kyu

    2015-01-01

    Zebrafish models have recently been highlighted as a valuable tool in studying the molecular basis of neuromuscular diseases and developing new pharmacological treatments. Needle electromyography (EMG) is needed not only for validating transgenic zebrafish models with muscular dystrophies (MD), but also for assessing the efficacy of therapeutics. However, performing needle EMG on larval zebrafish has not been feasible due to the lack of proper EMG sensors and systems for such small animals. We introduce a new type of EMG needle electrode to measure intramuscular activities of larval zebrafish, together with a method to hold the animal in position during EMG, without anesthetization. The silicon-based needle electrode was found to be sufficiently strong and sharp to penetrate the skin and muscles of zebrafish larvae, and its shape and performance did not change after multiple insertions. With the use of the proposed needle electrode and measurement system, EMG was successfully performed on zebrafish at 30 days postfertilization (dpf) and at 5 dpf. Burst patterns and spike morphology of the recorded EMG signals were analyzed. The measured single spikes were triphasic with an initial positive deflection, which is typical for motor unit action potentials, with durations of ∼10 ms, whereas the muscle activity was silent during the anesthetized condition. These findings confirmed the capability of this system of detecting EMG signals from very small animals such as 5 dpf zebrafish. The developed EMG sensor and system are expected to become a helpful tool in validating zebrafish MD models and further developing therapeutics. PMID:26180124

  10. The Zebrafish Xenograft Platform: Evolution of a Novel Cancer Model and Preclinical Screening Tool.

    PubMed

    Wertman, Jaime; Veinotte, Chansey J; Dellaire, Graham; Berman, Jason N

    2016-01-01

    Animal xenografts of human cancers represent a key preclinical tool in the field of cancer research. While mouse xenografts have long been the gold standard, investigators have begun to use zebrafish (Danio rerio) xenotransplantation as a relatively rapid, robust and cost-effective in vivo model of human cancers. There are several important methodological considerations in the design of an informative and efficient zebrafish xenotransplantation experiment. Various transgenic fish strains have been created that facilitate microscopic observation, ranging from the completely transparent casper fish to the Tg(fli1:eGFP) fish that expresses fluorescent GFP protein in its vascular tissue. While human cancer cell lines have been used extensively in zebrafish xenotransplantation studies, several reports have also used primary patient samples as the donor material. The zebrafish is ideally suited for transplanting primary patient material by virtue of the relatively low number of cells required for each embryo (between 50 and 300 cells), the absence of an adaptive immune system in the early zebrafish embryo, and the short experimental timeframe (5-7 days). Following xenotransplantation into the fish, cells can be tracked using in vivo or ex vivo measures of cell proliferation and migration, facilitated by fluorescence or human-specific protein expression. Importantly, assays have been developed that allow for the reliable detection of in vivo human cancer cell growth or inhibition following administration of drugs of interest. The zebrafish xenotransplantation model is a unique and effective tool for the study of cancer cell biology. PMID:27165359

  11. A comprehensive screening, education, and training tool for the psychological assessment of patients seeking aesthetic surgery: "DESIRABLE OP?".

    PubMed

    Rees, Leila S; Myers, Simon; Bradbury, Eileen

    2012-04-01

    Patients may seek aesthetic surgery for many reasons. They may present with expectations for both the surgical outcome and the impact that their changed appearance will have on their lives. The desire for an aesthetic procedure is usually driven by increased levels of self-consciousness. The surgeon must be able to identify those patients where the psychological outcome of aesthetic surgery is likely to be poor, and where the self-consciousness of the patient is abnormal. A mnemonic (DESIRABLE OP) is presented with the aim of providing surgeons with a screening tool that can lead them through the psychological assessment of any patient seeking an aesthetic procedure and enable them to determine whether its undertaking constitutes a desirable operation?

  12. Screening for glycosidase activities of lactic acid bacteria as a biotechnological tool in oenology.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Martín, Fátima; Seseña, Susana; Izquierdo, Pedro Miguel; Martín, Raúl; Palop, María Llanos

    2012-04-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the ability from a number of lactic acid bacteria isolated from different sources to produce glycosidase enzymes. Representative isolates (225) from clusters obtained after genotyping, using randomly amplified polymorphic DNA-polymerase chain reaction (RAPD-PCR) analysis, of 1,464 isolates, were screened for β-D-glucosidase activity. Thirty-five of them were selected for subsequent analysis. These strains were able to hydrolyze α-D-glucopyranoside, β-D-xylopyranoside and α-L-arabinofuranoside although β-D-glucosidase activity was the predominant activity for 22 of the selected strains. Only some of them did so with α-L-rhamnopyranoside. All of these were from wine samples and were identified as belonging to the Oenococcus oeni species using Amplification and Restriction Analysis of 16S-rRNA gene (16S-ARDRA). When the influence of pH, temperature and ethanol or sugars content on β-D-glucosidase activity was assayed, a strain-dependent response was observed. The β-D-glucosidase activity occurred in both whole and sonicated cells but not in the supernatants from cultures or obtained after cell sonication. Strains 10, 17, 21, and 23 retained the most β-D-glucosidase activity when they were assayed at the conditions of temperature, pH, ethanol and sugar content used in winemaking. These results suggest that these strains could be used as a source of glycosidase enzymes for use in winemaking.

  13. The High Throughput Screening Infrastructure: The Right Tools for the Task.

    PubMed

    Beggs; Blok; Diels

    1999-01-01

    HTS is a key component of pharmaceutical lead identification process. Over recent years, the pharmaceutical industry has experienced significant increases in the throughput capabilities of its HTS functions. In those companies where HTS has been effectively deployed, it is now possible to screen the entire corporate compound collection against a pharmacological target within a timescale of several weeks to a few months. This capability has been realized, not as a result of the purchase of any one particular piece of hardware, but rather through the development of a truly effective HTS infrastructure that matches the needs of the parent organization. Central to this is the need to understand how to effectively combine the use of the different types of hardware available to the HTS specialist. The use of both modular workstations and single-arm robotic systems have underpinned most HTS groups operations. Recent advances in the field of multiple-arm robotic systems and dedicated automation systems offer even further potential for increasing productivity. This article describes our experience with the use of a dedicated automation system for HTS applications.

  14. Configurational Entropy in Ice Nanosystems: Tools for Structure Generation and Screening.

    PubMed

    Parkkinen, P; Riikonen, S; Halonen, L

    2014-03-11

    Recently, a number of experimental and theoretical studies of low-temperature ice and water in nanoscale systems have emerged. Any theoretical study trying to model such systems will encounter the proton-disorder problem, i.e., there exist many configurations differing by water-molecule rotations for a fixed oxygen atom structure. An extensive search within the allowed proton-disorder space should always be perfomed to ensure a reasonable low-energy isomer and to address the effect of proton-configurational entropy that may affect experimental observables. In the present work, an efficient general-purpose program for finite, semiperiodic, and periodic systems of hydrogen-bonded molecules is presented, which can be used in searching and enumerating the proton-configurational ensemble. Benchmarking tests are performed for ice nanotubes and finite slabs. Finally, the program is applied to experimentally appropriate ice nanosystems. A boron nitride film supported ice nanodot is studied in detail. Using a systematic generation of its proton-configurational ensemble, we find an isomer that is ∼1 eV lower in total energy than one previously studied. The present isomer features a considerable dipole moment and implies that ice nanodots are inherently ferroelectric parallel to the surface. We conclude by demonstrating how the so-called hydrogen-bond connectivity parameters can be used to screen low-energy isomers.

  15. Total reflection X-ray fluorescence as a tool for food screening

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borgese, Laura; Bilo, Fabjola; Dalipi, Rogerta; Bontempi, Elza; Depero, Laura E.

    2015-11-01

    This review provides a comprehensive overview of the applications of total reflection X-ray fluorescence (TXRF) in the field of food analysis. Elemental composition of food is of great importance, since food is the main source of essential, major and trace elements for animals and humans. Some potentially toxic elements, dangerous for human health may contaminate food, entering the food chain from the environment, processing, and storage. For this reason the elemental analysis of food is fundamental for safety assessment. Fast and sensitive analytical techniques, able to detect major and trace elements, are required as a result of the increasing demand on multi-elemental information and product screening. TXRF is suitable for elemental analysis of food, since it provides simultaneous multi-elemental identification in a wide dynamic range of concentrations. Several different matrices may be analyzed obtaining results with a good precision and accuracy. In this review, the most recent literature about the use of TXRF for the analysis of food is reported. The focus is placed on the applications within food quality monitoring of drinks, beverages, vegetables, fruits, cereals, animal derivatives and dietary supplements. Furthermore, this paper provides a critical outlook on the developments required to transfer these methods from research to the industrial and analytical laboratories contexts.

  16. Development of a screening tool for staging of diabetic retinopathy in fundus images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhara, Ashis Kumar; Mukhopadhyay, Sudipta; Bency, Mayur Joseph; Rangayyan, Rangaraj M.; Bansal, Reema; Gupta, Amod

    2015-03-01

    Diabetic retinopathy is a condition of the eye of diabetic patients where the retina is damaged because of long-term diabetes. The condition deteriorates towards irreversible blindness in extreme cases of diabetic retinopathy. Hence, early detection of diabetic retinopathy is important to prevent blindness. Regular screening of fundus images of diabetic patients could be helpful in preventing blindness caused by diabetic retinopathy. In this paper, we propose techniques for staging of diabetic retinopathy in fundus images using several shape and texture features computed from detected microaneurysms, exudates, and hemorrhages. The classification accuracy is reported in terms of the area (Az) under the receiver operating characteristic curve using 200 fundus images from the MESSIDOR database. The value of Az for classifying normal images versus mild, moderate, and severe nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy (NPDR) is 0:9106. The value of Az for classification of mild NPDR versus moderate and severe NPDR is 0:8372. The Az value for classification of moderate NPDR and severe NPDR is 0:9750.

  17. New tools for embryo selection: comprehensive chromosome screening by array comparative genomic hybridization.

    PubMed

    Rodrigo, Lorena; Mateu, Emilia; Mercader, Amparo; Cobo, Ana Cristina; Peinado, Vanessa; Milán, Miguel; Al-Asmar, Nasser; Campos-Galindo, Inmaculada; García-Herrero, Sandra; Mir, Pere; Simón, Carlos; Rubio, Carmen

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of comprehensive chromosome screening (CCS) using array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH). The study included 1420 CCS cycles for recurrent miscarriage (n = 203); repetitive implantation failure (n = 188); severe male factor (n = 116); previous trisomic pregnancy (n = 33); and advanced maternal age (n = 880). CCS was performed in cycles with fresh oocytes and embryos (n = 774); mixed cycles with fresh and vitrified oocytes (n = 320); mixed cycles with fresh and vitrified day-2 embryos (n = 235); and mixed cycles with fresh and vitrified day-3 embryos (n = 91). Day-3 embryo biopsy was performed and analyzed by aCGH followed by day-5 embryo transfer. Consistent implantation (range: 40.5-54.2%) and pregnancy rates per transfer (range: 46.0-62.9%) were obtained for all the indications and independently of the origin of the oocytes or embryos. However, a lower delivery rate per cycle was achieved in women aged over 40 years (18.1%) due to the higher percentage of aneuploid embryos (85.3%) and lower number of cycles with at least one euploid embryo available per transfer (40.3%). We concluded that aneuploidy is one of the major factors which affect embryo implantation.

  18. New Tools for Embryo Selection: Comprehensive Chromosome Screening by Array Comparative Genomic Hybridization

    PubMed Central

    Cobo, Ana Cristina; Milán, Miguel; Al-Asmar, Nasser; García-Herrero, Sandra; Mir, Pere; Simón, Carlos

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of comprehensive chromosome screening (CCS) using array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH). The study included 1420 CCS cycles for recurrent miscarriage (n = 203); repetitive implantation failure (n = 188); severe male factor (n = 116); previous trisomic pregnancy (n = 33); and advanced maternal age (n = 880). CCS was performed in cycles with fresh oocytes and embryos (n = 774); mixed cycles with fresh and vitrified oocytes (n = 320); mixed cycles with fresh and vitrified day-2 embryos (n = 235); and mixed cycles with fresh and vitrified day-3 embryos (n = 91). Day-3 embryo biopsy was performed and analyzed by aCGH followed by day-5 embryo transfer. Consistent implantation (range: 40.5–54.2%) and pregnancy rates per transfer (range: 46.0–62.9%) were obtained for all the indications and independently of the origin of the oocytes or embryos. However, a lower delivery rate per cycle was achieved in women aged over 40 years (18.1%) due to the higher percentage of aneuploid embryos (85.3%) and lower number of cycles with at least one euploid embryo available per transfer (40.3%). We concluded that aneuploidy is one of the major factors which affect embryo implantation. PMID:24877108

  19. Tools for building a comprehensive modeling system for virtual screening under real biological conditions: The Computational Titration algorithm.

    PubMed

    Kellogg, Glen E; Fornabaio, Micaela; Chen, Deliang L; Abraham, Donald J; Spyrakis, Francesca; Cozzini, Pietro; Mozzarelli, Andrea

    2006-05-01

    Computational tools utilizing a unique empirical modeling system based on the hydrophobic effect and the measurement of logP(o/w) (the partition coefficient for solvent transfer between 1-octanol and water) are described. The associated force field, Hydropathic INTeractions (HINT), contains much rich information about non-covalent interactions in the biological environment because of its basis in an experiment that measures interactions in solution. HINT is shown to be the core of an evolving virtual screening system that is capable of taking into account a number of factors often ignored such as entropy, effects of solvent molecules at the active site, and the ionization states of acidic and basic residues and ligand functional groups. The outline of a comprehensive modeling system for virtual screening that incorporates these features is described. In addition, a detailed description of the Computational Titration algorithm is provided. As an example, three complexes of dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) are analyzed with our system and these results are compared with the experimental free energies of binding.

  20. HPV Testing from Dried Urine Spots as a Tool for Cervical Cancer Screening in Low-Income Countries

    PubMed Central

    Frati, Elena Rosanna; Martinelli, Marianna; Fasoli, Ester; Colzani, Daniela; Bianchi, Silvia; Binda, Sandro; Olivani, Pierfranco; Tanzi, Elisabetta

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, several screening strategies are available to prevent cervical cancer, but inadequate resources, sociocultural barriers, and sampling issues impede their success in low-income countries. To overcome these issues, this study aimed to evaluate the performance of human papillomavirus (HPV) testing from dried urine spots (DUS). Eighty-eight urine samples (including 56 HPV DNA positive specimens) were spotted on filter paper, dried, and stored in paper-bags. HPV DNA was detected from the DUS after 1 week and 4 weeks of storage using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay. The sensitivity, specificity, and concordance of the DUS-based HPV test were evaluated by comparing the results with those of HPV testing on fresh urine samples as the gold standard. The sensitivity of the test was 98.21% (95% CI: 90.56–99.68) for DUS stored for 1 week and 96.42% (95% CI: 87.88–99.01) for DUS stored for 4 weeks. The specificity was 100% (95% CI: 89.28–100) at both time points. The concordance between DUS and fresh urine HPV testing was “almost perfect” using the κ statistic. These preliminary data suggest that a DUS-based assay could bypass sociocultural barriers and sampling issues and therefore could be a suitable, effective tool for epidemiological surveillance and screening programs, especially in low-income countries. PMID:26180790

  1. Is the MDS-UPDRS a Good Screening Tool for Detecting Sleep Problems and Daytime Sleepiness in Parkinson's Disease?

    PubMed

    Horváth, Krisztina; Aschermann, Zsuzsanna; Acs, Péter; Bosnyák, Edit; Deli, Gabriella; Pál, Endre; Janszky, József; Faludi, Béla; Késmárki, Ildikó; Komoly, Sámuel; Bokor, Magdolna; Rigó, Eszter; Lajtos, Júlia; Klivényi, Péter; Dibó, György; Vécsei, László; Takáts, Annamária; Tóth, Adrián; Imre, Piroska; Nagy, Ferenc; Herceg, Mihály; Kamondi, Anita; Hidasi, Eszter; Kovács, Norbert

    2014-01-01

    Movement Disorder Society-sponsored Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (MDS-UPDRS) has separate items for measuring sleep problems (item 1.7) and daytime sleepiness (1.8). The aim of our study was to evaluate the screening sensitivity and specificity of these items to the PD Sleep Scale 2nd version (PDSS-2) and Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS). In this nationwide, cross-sectional study 460 PD patients were enrolled. Spearman's rank correlation coefficients were calculated between the individual items, domains, and the total score of PDSS-2 and item 1.7 of MDS-UPDRS. Similarly, the items and the total score of ESS were contrasted to item 1.8 of MDS-UPDRS. After developing generalized ordinal logistic regression models, the transformed and observed scores were compared by Lin's Concordance Correlation Coefficient. Only item 3 difficulties staying asleep and the "disturbed sleep" domain of PDSS-2 showed high correlation with "sleep problems" item 1.7 of the MDS-UPDRS. Total score of PDSS-2 had moderate correlation with this MDS-UPRDS item. The total score of ESS showed the strongest, but still moderate, correlation with "daytime sleepiness" item 1.8 of MDS-UPDRS. As intended, the MDS-UPDRS serves as an effective screening tool for both sleep problems and daytime sleepiness and identifies subjects whose disabilities need further investigation.

  2. Integrated One-Against-One Classifiers as Tools for Virtual Screening of Compound Databases: A Case Study with CNS Inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Jalali-Heravi, Mehdi; Mani-Varnosfaderani, Ahmad; Valadkhani, Abolfazl

    2013-08-01

    A total of 21 833 inhibitors of the central nervous system (CNS) were collected from Binding-database and analyzed using discriminant analysis (DA) techniques. A combination of genetic algorithm and quadratic discriminant analysis (GA-QDA) was proposed as a tool for the classification of molecules based on their therapeutic targets and activities. The results indicated that the one-against-one (OAO) QDA classifiers correctly separate the molecules based on their therapeutic targets and are comparable with support vector machines. These classifiers help in charting the chemical space of the CNS inhibitors and finding specific subspaces occupied by particular classes of molecules. As a next step, the classification models were used as virtual filters for screening of random subsets of PUBCHEM and ZINC databases. The calculated enrichment factors together with the area under curve values of receiver operating characteristic curves showed that these classifiers are good candidates to speed up the early stages of drug discovery projects. The "relative distances" of the center of active classes of biosimilar molecules calculated by OAO classifiers were used as indices for sorting the compound databases. The results revealed that, the multiclass classification models in this work circumvent the definition inactive sets for virtual screening and are useful for compound retrieval analysis in Chemoinformatics. PMID:27480066

  3. Development of a computerized tool for the chinese version of the montreal cognitive assessment for screening mild cognitive impairment.

    PubMed

    Yu, Ke; Zhang, Shangang; Wang, Qingsong; Wang, Xiaofei; Qin, Yang; Wang, Jian; Li, Congyang; Wu, Yuxian; Wang, Weiwen; Lin, Hang

    2014-11-01

    ABSTRACT Background: The Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) is used for screening mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and the Beijing version (MoCA-BJ) is widely used in China. We aimed to develop a computerized tool for MoCA-BJ (MoCA-CC). Methods: MoCA-CC used person-machine interaction instead of patient-to-physician interaction; other aspects such as the scoring system did not differ from the original test. MoCA-CC, MoCA-BJ and routine neuropsychological tests were administered to 181 elderly participants (MCI = 96, normal controls [NC] = 85). Results: A total of 176 (97.24%) participants were evaluated successfully by MoCA-CC. Cronbach's α for MoCA-CC was 0.72. The test-retest reliability (retesting after six weeks) was good (intraclass correlation coefficient = 0.82; P < 0.001). Significant differences were observed in total scores (t = 9.38, P < 0.001) and individual item scores (t = 2.18-8.62, P < 0.05) between the NC and MCI groups, except for the score for "Naming" (t = 0.24, P = 0.81). The MoCA-CC total scores were highly correlated with the MoCA-BJ total scores (r = 0.93, P < 0.001) in the MCI participants. The area under receiver-operator curve for the prediction of MCI was 0.97 (95% confidence interval = 0.95-1.00). At the optimal cut-off score of 25/26, MoCA-CC demonstrated 95.8% sensitivity and 87.1% specificity. Conclusion: The MoCA-CC tool developed here has several advantages over the paper-pencil method and is reliable for screening MCI in elderly Chinese individuals, especially in the primary clinical setting. It needs to be validated in other diverse and larger populations. PMID:25362894

  4. Evaluation of AUSDRISK as a screening tool for lifestyle modification programs: international implications for policy and cost-effectiveness

    PubMed Central

    Malo, Jonathan A; Versace, Vincent L; Janus, Edward D; Laatikainen, Tiina; Peltonen, Markku; Vartiainen, Erkki; Coates, Michael J; Dunbar, James A

    2015-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the current use of Australian Type 2 Diabetes Risk Assessment Tool (AUSDRISK) as a screening tool to identify individuals at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes for entry into lifestyle modification programs. Research Design and Methods AUSDRISK scores were calculated from participants aged 40–74 years in the Greater Green Triangle Risk Factor Study, a cross-sectional population survey in 3 regions of Southwest Victoria, Australia, 2004–2006. Biomedical profiles of AUSDRISK risk categories were determined along with estimates of the Victorian population included at various cut-off scores. Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value, and receiver operating characteristics were calculated for AUSDRISK in determining fasting plasma glucose (FPG) ≥6.1 mmol/L. Results Increasing AUSDRISK scores were associated with an increase in weight, body mass index, FPG, and metabolic syndrome. Increasing the minimum cut-off score also increased the proportion of individuals who were obese and centrally obese, had impaired fasting glucose (IFG) and metabolic syndrome. An AUSDRISK score of ≥12 was estimated to include 39.5% of the Victorian population aged 40–74 (916 000), while a score of ≥20 would include only 5.2% of the same population (120 000). At AUSDRISK≥20, the PPV for detecting FPG≥6.1 mmol/L was 28.4%. Conclusions AUSDRISK is powered to predict those with IFG and undiagnosed type 2 diabetes, but its effectiveness as the sole determinant for entry into a lifestyle modification program is questionable given the large proportion of the population screened-in using the current minimum cut-off of ≥12. AUSDRISK should be used in conjunction with oral glucose tolerance testing, fasting glucose, or glycated hemoglobin to identify those individuals at highest risk of progression to type 2 diabetes, who should be the primary targets for lifestyle modification. PMID:26468399

  5. Passive sampling - a tool for targeted screening of emerging pollutants in rivers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kodes, Vit; Grabic, Roman

    2016-04-01

    A screening of more than 300 pollutants such as pharmaceuticals (analgesics, psycholeptics, antidepressants, antibiotics, beta blockers), PCPs (UV blockers, musk's, repellents), illicit drugs, pesticides, perfluorinated compounds and their metabolites at 22 monitoring sites throughout the Czech Republic was conducted in 2013. POCIS samplers were used in this study. Two types of passive samplers (pesticide and pharmaceutical POCIS) were deployed for 14 days in May and in October, 88 samples were collected in total. In total 265 and 310 target compounds were analyzed in pharmaceutical and pesticide samplers respectively. The chemicals of interest were extracted from the passive samplers according to standardized procedures. LC -MS/MS and LC-MS/HRMS methods were applied for analyses of extracts. 150 of 310 (48%) and 127 of 265 (48%) analyzed substances had been found in pesticide and pharmaceutical samplers respectively. 27 substances (pharmaceuticals, PCPs, pesticides, caffeine, nicotine metabolite cotinine) occurred at all sampled sites, additional 39 substances (pharmaceuticals, PCPs, pesticides) occurred at more than 17 (75%) sites. One of perfluorinated compounds (PFOA) occurred at 68% of sites, whilst one of illicit drugs (Methamphetamine) was found at 61% of sites. The highest number of contaminants found in one POCIS at a single monitoring site was 111. The concentrations varied from nanograms to thousands of nanograms per sampler. Emerging contaminants occurring in highest concentrations (> 1000 ng/sampler) were BP-4 and PBSA (UV blockers), caffeine, DEET (insect repellent), imidacloprid (insecticide), telmisartan (hypertension drug) and tramadol (analgesic). Monitoring in the Czech Republic has demonstrated that many target compounds enter river waters and a number of these compounds reach high concentrations.

  6. Predicting Structures of Ru-Centered Dyes: A Computational Screening Tool.

    PubMed

    Fredin, Lisa A; Allison, Thomas C

    2016-04-01

    Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) represent a means for harvesting solar energy to produce electrical power. Though a number of light harvesting dyes are in use, the search continues for more efficient and effective compounds to make commercially viable DSCs a reality. Computational methods have been increasingly applied to understand the dyes currently in use and to aid in the search for improved light harvesting compounds. Semiempirical quantum chemistry methods have a well-deserved reputation for giving good quality results in a very short amount of computer time. The most recent semiempirical models such as PM6 and PM7 are parametrized for a wide variety of molecule types, including organometallic complexes similar to DSC chromophores. In this article, the performance of PM6 is tested against a set of 20 molecules whose geometries were optimized using a density functional theory (DFT) method. It is found that PM6 gives geometries that are in good agreement with the optimized DFT structures. In order to reduce the differences between geometries optimized using PM6 and geometries optimized using DFT, the PM6 basis set parameters have been optimized for a subset of the molecules. It is found that it is sufficient to optimize the basis set for Ru alone to improve the agreement between the PM6 results and the DFT results. When this optimized Ru basis set is used, the mean unsigned error in Ru-ligand bond lengths is reduced from 0.043 to 0.017 Å in the set of 20 test molecules. Though the magnitude of these differences is small, the effect on the calculated UV/vis spectra is significant. These results clearly demonstrate the value of using PM6 to screen DSC chromophores as well as the value of optimizing PM6 basis set parameters for a specific set of molecules.

  7. Psychometric Properties of a Decisional Capacity Screening Tool for Individuals Contemplating Participation in Alzheimer's disease Research

    PubMed Central

    Seaman, Jennifer Burgher; Terhorst, Lauren; Gentry, Amanda; Hunsaker, Amanda; Parker, Lisa S.; Lingler, Jennifer Hagerty

    2016-01-01

    Background With the growing population of individuals affected by Alzheimer's disease (AD) and related disorders, there is a pressing demand for research on late life cognitive disorders. However, the high risk for decisional incapacity in this population necessitates the evaluation of capacity to consent to research participation, adding to the cost and complexity of the research process. The University of California, San Diego Brief Assessment of Capacity to Consent (UBACC) was initially validated in a sample of persons with schizophrenia and healthy controls. Objective To assess the psychometric properties of the UBACC when used in a sample of individuals contemplating participation in research on AD. Methods The UBACC was administered to a convenience sample (n=132) consisting of individuals with mild to moderate cognitive impairment (n=52), their study partners (n= 52) and healthy older adults control subjects (n=30), as part of a broader study to evaluate perceived burden of research participation. Reliability tests, correlational analyses, and exploratory factor analytic methods were used to examine the psychometric properties of the instrument. Results UBACC scores were significantly associated with both global cognition (rs = .564, p < .001) and verbal fluency (rs = .511, P <.001), indicating concurrent validity with related constructs. The resulting factor structure differed from that reported by the developers in their initial testing. Items clustered almost entirely on one factor, and items reflecting the construct of understanding accounted for 32.12% of the total variance, with no evidence for distinct reasoning or appreciation scales. Conclusion The UBACC shows promise when used to screen for decisional capacity among those considering participation in AD research. PMID:25765917

  8. Predicting Structures of Ru-Centered Dyes: A Computational Screening Tool.

    PubMed

    Fredin, Lisa A; Allison, Thomas C

    2016-04-01

    Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) represent a means for harvesting solar energy to produce electrical power. Though a number of light harvesting dyes are in use, the search continues for more efficient and effective compounds to make commercially viable DSCs a reality. Computational methods have been increasingly applied to understand the dyes currently in use and to aid in the search for improved light harvesting compounds. Semiempirical quantum chemistry methods have a well-deserved reputation for giving good quality results in a very short amount of computer time. The most recent semiempirical models such as PM6 and PM7 are parametrized for a wide variety of molecule types, including organometallic complexes similar to DSC chromophores. In this article, the performance of PM6 is tested against a set of 20 molecules whose geometries were optimized using a density functional theory (DFT) method. It is found that PM6 gives geometries that are in good agreement with the optimized DFT structures. In order to reduce the differences between geometries optimized using PM6 and geometries optimized using DFT, the PM6 basis set parameters have been optimized for a subset of the molecules. It is found that it is sufficient to optimize the basis set for Ru alone to improve the agreement between the PM6 results and the DFT results. When this optimized Ru basis set is used, the mean unsigned error in Ru-ligand bond lengths is reduced from 0.043 to 0.017 Å in the set of 20 test molecules. Though the magnitude of these differences is small, the effect on the calculated UV/vis spectra is significant. These results clearly demonstrate the value of using PM6 to screen DSC chromophores as well as the value of optimizing PM6 basis set parameters for a specific set of molecules. PMID:26982657

  9. Identifying Niemann-Pick type C in early-onset ataxia: two quick clinical screening tools.

    PubMed

    Synofzik, Matthis; Fleszar, Zofia; Schöls, Ludger; Just, Jennifer; Bauer, Peter; Torres Martin, Juan V; Kolb, Stefan

    2016-10-01

    Niemann-Pick disease type C (NP-C) is a rare multisystemic lysosomal disorder which, albeit treatable, is still starkly underdiagnosed. As NP-C features early onset ataxia (EOA) in 85-90 % of cases, EOA presents a promising target group for undiagnosed NP-C patients. Here, we assessed the ability of the previously established NP-C suspicion index (SI) and a novel abbreviated '2/3 SI' tool for rapid appraisal of suspected NP-C in unexplained EOA. This was a retrospective observational study comparing 'NP-C EOA' cases (EOA patients with confirmed NP-C) with non-NP-C EOA controls (EOA patients negative for NP-C gene mutations). NP-C risk prediction scores (RPS) from both the original and 2/3 SIs were calculated and their discriminatory performance evaluated. Among 133 patients (47 NP-C EOA cases; 86 non-NP-C EOA controls), moderate (40-69 points) and high (≥70 points) RPS were common based on original SI assessments in non-NP-C EOA controls [16 (19 %) and 8 (9 %), respectively], but scores ≥70 points were far more frequent [46 (98 %)] among NP-C EOA cases. RPS cut-off values provided 98 % sensitivity and 91 % specificity for NP-C at 70-point cut-off, and ROC analysis revealed an AUC of 0.982. Using the 2/3 SI, 90 % of NP-C EOA cases had scores of 2 or 3, and RPS analysis showed an AUC of 0.961. In conclusion, the NP-C SI and the new, quick-to-apply 2/3 SI distinguished well between NP-C and non-NP-C patients, even in EOA populations with high background levels of broadly NPC-compatible multisystemic disease features. While the original SI showed the greatest sensitivity, both tools reliably aided identification of patients with unexplained EOA who warranted further investigation for NP-C.

  10. Bringing the light to high throughput screening: use of optogenetic tools for the development of recombinant cellular assays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agus, Viviana; Di Silvio, Alberto; Rolland, Jean Francois; Mondini, Anna; Tremolada, Sara; Montag, Katharina; Scarabottolo, Lia; Redaelli, Loredana; Lohmer, Stefan

    2015-03-01

    The use of light-activated proteins represents a powerful tool to control biological processes with high spatial and temporal precision. These so called "optogenetic" technologies have been successfully validated in many recombinant systems, and have been widely applied to the study of cellular mechanisms in intact tissues or behaving animals; to do that, complex, high-intensity, often home-made instrumentations were developed to achieve the optimal power and precision of light stimulation. In our study we sought to determine if this optical modulation can be obtained also in a miniaturized format, such as a 384-well plate, using the instrumentations normally dedicated to fluorescence analysis in High Throughput Screening (HTS) activities, such as for example the FLIPR (Fluorometric Imaging Plate Reader) instrument. We successfully generated optogenetic assays for the study of different ion channel targets: the CaV1.3 calcium channel was modulated by the light-activated Channelrhodopsin-2, the HCN2 cyclic nucleotide gated (CNG) channel was modulated by the light activated bPAC adenylyl cyclase, and finally the genetically encoded voltage indicator ArcLight was efficiently used to measure potassium, sodium or chloride channel activity. Our results showed that stable, robust and miniaturized cellular assays can be developed using different optogenetic tools, and efficiently modulated by the FLIPR instrument LEDs in a 384-well format. The spatial and temporal resolution delivered by this technology might enormously advantage the early stages of drug discovery, leading to the identification of more physiological and effective drug molecules.

  11. A Radially Organized Multipatterned Device as a Diagnostic Tool for the Screening of Topographies in Tissue Engineering Biomaterials.

    PubMed

    Babo, Pedro S; Klymov, Alexey; teRiet, Joost; Reis, Rui L; Jansen, John A; Gomes, Manuela E; Walboomers, X Frank

    2016-09-01

    Micro- and nanotextured biomaterial surfaces have been widely studied for their capacity to drive the regeneration of organized tissues. Nanotopographical features in the shape of groove-ridge patterns aim at mimicking the extracellular matrix organization. However, to date, a wide array of groove and ridge sizes has been described. In this work, we therefore tested a device composed of a multipatterned array consisting of six patterns of radially arranged parallel nanogrooves, with a pitch ranging from 0 to 1000 nm and a depth ranging from 0 to 170 nm, to be used as a tool for the expeditious and simultaneous screening of surface topographies aiming the regeneration of anisotropically organized tissues such as ligament. The topographies were reproduced in (1) epoxy resin or (2) membranes produced by the crosslinking of platelet lysate (PL) with genipin (gPL). Both materials were seeded with periodontal ligament cells (PDLCs) and the proliferation, migration, as well as cell alignment were assessed. The effect of topography in PDLCs was only evident in terms of cell organization, resulting in a highly anisotropic organization of the cells for the 1000 and 600 nm patterns, and in an increased isotropic organization for shallower topographies. Overall, our results suggest that this multipatterned system can be a valuable diagnostic tool for biomaterials aiming at the regeneration of anisotropically organized tissues, such as periodontal ligament. PMID:27558215

  12. Tinnitus and Hearing Survey: A Screening Tool to Differentiate Bothersome Tinnitus From Hearing Difficulties

    PubMed Central

    Griest, Susan; Zaugg, Tara L.; Thielman, Emily; Kaelin, Christine; Galvez, Gino; Carlson, Kathleen F.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Individuals complaining of tinnitus often attribute hearing problems to the tinnitus. In such cases some (or all) of their reported “tinnitus distress” may in fact be caused by trouble communicating due to hearing problems. We developed the Tinnitus and Hearing Survey (THS) as a tool to rapidly differentiate hearing problems from tinnitus problems. Method For 2 of our research studies, we administered the THS twice (mean of 16.5 days between tests) to 67 participants who did not receive intervention. These data allow for measures of statistical validation of the THS. Results Reliability of the THS was good to excellent regarding internal consistency (α = .86–.94), test–retest reliability (r = .76–.83), and convergent validity between the Tinnitus Handicap Inventory (Newman, Jacobson, & Spitzer, 1996; Newman, Sandridge, & Jacobson, 1998) and the A (Tinnitus) subscale of the THS (r = .78). Factor analysis confirmed that the 2 subscales, A (Tinnitus) and B (Hearing), have strong internal structure, explaining 71.7% of the total variance, and low correlation with each other (r = .46), resulting in a small amount of shared variance (21%). Conclusion These results provide evidence that the THS is statistically validated and reliable for use in assisting patients and clinicians in quickly (and collaboratively) determining whether intervention for tinnitus is appropriate. PMID:25551458

  13. Using a screening tool to improve timely referral of patients from acute oncology-haematology to palliative care services

    PubMed Central

    Begum, Akhtari

    2013-01-01

    This project was done at specialist cancer hospital in Qatar. At a haematology-oncology inpatient department most patients were not getting access to palliative care unless they were at the very end stages of life. Data collected from 2008-2011 showed significant numbers of patients were dying within one month of their transfer to palliative care. There was no standard measure to identify the prospective palliative care patients. A multidisciplinary team developed a Palliative care referral screening tool based on the National Cancer Care Network guideline. Retrospective medical record review done from January to April 2012 showed a mean of 68% of patients who scored more than five were not consulted, 32% of patients who scored more than seven were not transferred to palliative care and seven percent died without any referral. The team used various kinds of quality planning, analysis and improvement tools in the form of process mapping, value analysis, Fish Bone diagrams, stakeholders' analysis and communication, physician survey, “Pareto's principal” (80 / 20 rule, the law of vital few) and other data collection tools. The palliative care referral process was standardised by preparing and implementing an objective scoring tool based on international best practice. It changed the referral culture and helped manage the psychological barriers of patients, families and caregivers. Extensive orientation and education of all key stakeholders was implemented. Monthly auditing of patient records was carried out. The aim has been achieved, exceeded and sustained, and we reduced the percentage of patients who scored more than five without palliative consultation from a mean of 68% to 16% and those who scored more than seven without palliative care transfer from a mean of thirty two percent to three percent, after four months of the project's implementation. Standardising the referral process and creating an objective referral tool is needed to facilitate safe

  14. 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

  15. Visceral Adiposity and Anthropometric Indicators as Screening Tools of Metabolic Syndrome among Low Income Rural Adults in Xinjiang

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Shu-xia; Zhang, Xiang-hui; Zhang, Jing-yu; He, Jia; Yan, Yi-zhong; Ma, Jiao-long; Ma, Ru-lin; Guo, Heng; Mu, La-ti; Li, Shu-gang; Niu, Qiang; Rui, Dong-sheng; Zhang, Mei; Liu, Jia-ming; Wang, Kui; Xu, Shang-zhi; Gao, Xiang; Ding, Yu-song

    2016-01-01

    Most previous studies on metabolic syndrome (MetS) examined urban and high income settings. We thus investigated the prevalence of MetS among a multi-ethnic population living in a low income rural area and explored the use of visceral adiposity and anthropometric indicators to identify men and women with MetS. We recruited 10,029 individuals of nomadic Kazakhs, rural Uyghur and Han residents in Xinjiang, China. MetS was defined by the Joint Interim Statement criteria. The receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) was used to compare the area under the ROC curve (AUC) of each index. The age-adjusted prevalence of MetS was 21.8%. The visceral adiposity index (VAI), lipid accumulation product (LAP), body adiposity index (BAI) and the waist-to-height ratio (WHtR) were significantly associated with MetS, independent of ethnic, age, and other covariates. The AUC of VAI, LAP and WHtR were all greater than 0.7, and the LAP was the index that most accurately identified MetS status in men (AUC = 0.853) and women (AUC = 0.817), with the optimal cut-offs of 34.7 and 27.3, respectively. In conclusion, the prevalence of MetS in low income rural adults of Xinjiang was high and the LAP was an effective indicator for the screening of MetS. PMID:27782221

  16. Non-targeted screening for contaminants in paper and board food-contact materials using effect-directed analysis and accurate mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Bengtström, Linda; Rosenmai, Anna Kjerstine; Trier, Xenia; Jensen, Lisbeth Krüger; Granby, Kit; Vinggaard, Anne Marie; Driffield, Malcolm; Højslev Petersen, Jens

    2016-06-01

    Due to large knowledge gaps in chemical composition and toxicological data for substances involved, paper and board food-contact materials (P&B FCM) have been emerging as a FCM type of particular concern for consumer safety. This study describes the development of a step-by-step strategy, including extraction, high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) fractionation, tentative identification of relevant substances and in vitro testing of selected tentatively identified substances. As a case study, we used two fractions from a recycled pizza box sample which exhibited aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) activity. These fractions were analysed by gas chromatography (GC) and ultra-HPLC (UHPLC) coupled to quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometers (QTOF MS) in order tentatively to identify substances. The elemental composition was determined for peaks above a threshold, and compared with entries in a commercial mass spectral library for GC-MS (GC-EI-QTOF MS) analysis and an in-house built library of accurate masses for substances known to be used in P&B packaging for UHPLC-QTOF analysis. Of 75 tentatively identified substances, 15 were initially selected for further testing in vitro; however, only seven were commercially available and subsequently tested in vitro and quantified. Of these seven, the identities of three pigments found in printing inks were confirmed by UHPLC tandem mass spectrometry (QqQ MS/MS). Two pigments had entries in the database, meaning that a material relevant accurate mass database can provide a fast tentative identification. Pure standards of the seven tentatively identified substances were tested in vitro but could not explain a significant proportion of the AhR-response in the extract. Targeted analyses of dioxins and PCBs, both well-known AhR agonists, was performed. However, the dioxins could explain approximately 3% of the activity observed in the pizza box extract indicating that some very AhR active substance(s) still remain to be

  17. Non-targeted screening for contaminants in paper and board food-contact materials using effect-directed analysis and accurate mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Bengtström, Linda; Rosenmai, Anna Kjerstine; Trier, Xenia; Jensen, Lisbeth Krüger; Granby, Kit; Vinggaard, Anne Marie; Driffield, Malcolm; Højslev Petersen, Jens

    2016-06-01

    Due to large knowledge gaps in chemical composition and toxicological data for substances involved, paper and board food-contact materials (P&B FCM) have been emerging as a FCM type of particular concern for consumer safety. This study describes the development of a step-by-step strategy, including extraction, high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) fractionation, tentative identification of relevant substances and in vitro testing of selected tentatively identified substances. As a case study, we used two fractions from a recycled pizza box sample which exhibited aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) activity. These fractions were analysed by gas chromatography (GC) and ultra-HPLC (UHPLC) coupled to quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometers (QTOF MS) in order tentatively to identify substances. The elemental composition was determined for peaks above a threshold, and compared with entries in a commercial mass spectral library for GC-MS (GC-EI-QTOF MS) analysis and an in-house built library of accurate masses for substances known to be used in P&B packaging for UHPLC-QTOF analysis. Of 75 tentatively identified substances, 15 were initially selected for further testing in vitro; however, only seven were commercially available and subsequently tested in vitro and quantified. Of these seven, the identities of three pigments found in printing inks were confirmed by UHPLC tandem mass spectrometry (QqQ MS/MS). Two pigments had entries in the database, meaning that a material relevant accurate mass database can provide a fast tentative identification. Pure standards of the seven tentatively identified substances were tested in vitro but could not explain a significant proportion of the AhR-response in the extract. Targeted analyses of dioxins and PCBs, both well-known AhR agonists, was performed. However, the dioxins could explain approximately 3% of the activity observed in the pizza box extract indicating that some very AhR active substance(s) still remain to be

  18. Can a back pain screening tool help classify patients with acute pain into risk levels for chronic pain?

    PubMed Central

    Mehling, W.E.; Avins, A.L.; Acree, M.C.; Carey, T.S.; Hecht, F.M.

    2016-01-01

    Background The 9-item STarT-Back screening tool was developed in primary care patients with low back pain (LBP) to identify those at greatest risk for chronic pain and requiring targeted treatment. We conducted a secondary data analysis study to examine the performance of comparable questionnaire items in a sample of primary care patients with well-defined acute LBP. Methods In a prospective cohort study, 605 primary care patients with LBP of less than 30 days answered a questionnaire with 6 items identical and 3 items analogous to the 9-item STarT-Back. Participants were followed up at 6 months and 2 years. STarT-Back rules were applied to classify participant's risk of chronic LBP, and the performance of the screening items in predicting outcomes was assessed using likelihood ratios. Results The proportion of patients with chronic pain at follow-up was considerably lower (6 months: 22%; 2 years: 25%) than in the STarT-Back validation cohort (40%) of patients with pain of any duration. The probability of developing chronic pain given a high-risk designation by items similar to the STarT-Back increased the pre-test probability to 31% and 35%. Likelihood ratios were close to 1. Conclusions A risk classification schema using the recommended cut-off scores with items similar to the STarT-Back in a primary care population with strictly defined acute LBP had limited ability to identify persons who progressed to chronic pain. The results suggest caution when applying the STarT-Back in patients with acute LBP and a need to consider a modification of its cut-offs. PMID:25381748

  19. Development of a tool for defining and identifying the dying patient in hospital: Criteria for Screening and Triaging to Appropriate aLternative care (CriSTAL)

    PubMed Central

    Cardona-Morrell, Magnolia; Hillman, Ken

    2015-01-01

    Objective To develop a screening tool to identify elderly patients at the end of life and quantify the risk of death in hospital or soon after discharge for to minimise prognostic uncertainty and avoid potentially harmful and futile treatments. Design Narrative literature review of definitions, tools and measurements that could be combined into a screening tool based on routinely available or obtainable data at the point of care to identify elderly patients who are unavoidably dying at the time of admission or at risk of dying during hospitalisation. Main measurements Variables and thresholds proposed for the Criteria for Screening and Triaging to Appropriate aLternative care (CriSTAL screening tool) were adopted from existing scales and published research findings showing association with either in-hospital, 30-day or 3-month mortality. Results Eighteen predictor instruments and their variants were examined. The final items for the new CriSTAL screening tool included: age ≥65; meeting ≥2 deterioration criteria; an index of frailty with ≥2 criteria; early warning score >4; presence of ≥1 selected comorbidities; nursing home placement; evidence of cognitive impairment; prior emergency hospitalisation or intensive care unit readmission in the past year; abnormal ECG; and proteinuria. Conclusions An unambiguous checklist may assist clinicians in reducing uncertainty patients who are likely to die within the next 3 months and help initiate transparent conversations with families and patients about end-of-life care. Retrospective chart review and prospective validation will be undertaken to optimise the number of prognostic items for easy administration and enhanced generalisability. Development of an evidence-based tool for defining and identifying the dying patient in hospital: CriSTAL. PMID:25613983

  20. Validation of the Microsoft Kinect as a Portable and Inexpensive Screening Tool for Identifying ACL Injury Risk

    PubMed Central

    Gray, Aaron D.; Marks, Jeff M.; Stone, Erik E.; Butler, Michael C.; Skubic, Marjorie; Sherman, Seth Lawrence

    2014-01-01

    Objectives: A widespread screening tool to assess anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury risk should ideally be portable, inexpensive, markerless and easy to use. We hypothesize that our software program - for use with the Microsoft Kinect Motion Sensor - fulfills the above requirements. This study compares the measurements of knee abduction during a drop vertical jump (DVJ) between the Microsoft Kinect and the “gold standard” marker-based Vicon motion analysis system. Methods: Thirteen participants (10 male: 3 female; age 20-31) took part in this IRB approved study. Each participant performed between 5 and 7 DVJs, yielding a total of 84 DVJs. We simultaneously measured knee valgus motion (KVM) as measured from initial contact (IC) to the point of peak flexion (PF), frontal plane knee angle (FPKA) at both IC and PF, and knee-to-ankle separation (KASR) ratio measured at PF with the Kinect and Vicon systems. The intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC) (two-way, single measure, absolute agreement) was used to assess the degree of agreement between the Kinect and Vicon for each measure. Results: KVM had the lowest ICC value; 0.81 and 0.85 for the left and right leg, respectively. The other measures had similar ICC values of approximately 0.89 for both legs. Standard interpretations of the ICC suggest values above 0.75 indicate excellent agreement between the measurements (Table 1). Conclusion: This study demonstrates good correlation between the Microsoft Kinect and the Vicon system for measuring frontal plane knee kinematics during the DVJ. The DVJ test has been established as an ideal task for evaluating the motions that put athletes at risk for ACL injuries. Screening and early detection of ACL injury risk factors may lead to a relative risk reduction between 30% to 80% with an appropriate ACL injury prevention program. As compared to the “gold standard” Vicon system, the Microsoft Kinect is a portable, inexpensive, marker-less, and expedient system that

  1. Operating Characteristics of a Tuberculosis Screening Tool for People Living with HIV in Out-Patient HIV Care and Treatment Services, Rwanda

    PubMed Central

    Turinawe, Kenneth; Vandebriel, Greet; Lowrance, David W.; Uwinkindi, Francois; Mutwa, Philippe; Boer, Kimberly R.; Mutembayire, Grace; Tugizimana, David; Nsanzimana, Sabin; Pevzner, Eric; Howard, Andrea A.; Gasana, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Background The World Health Organization (WHO) 2010 guidelines for intensified tuberculosis (TB) case finding (ICF) among people living with HIV (PLHIV) includes a recommendation that PLHIV receive routine TB screening. Since 2005, the Rwandan Ministry of Health has been using a five-question screening tool. Our study objective was to assess the operating characteristics of the tool designed to identify PLHIV with presumptive TB as measured against a composite reference standard, including bacteriologically confirmed TB. Methods In a cross-sectional study, the TB screening tool was routinely administered at enrolment in outpatient HIV care and treatment services at seven public health facilities. From March to September 2011, study enrollees were examined for TB disease irrespective of TB screening outcome. The examination consisted of a chest radiograph (CXR), three sputum smears (SS), sputum culture (SC) and polymerase chain reaction line-probe assay (Hain test). PLHIV were classified as having “laboratory-confirmed TB” with positive results on SS for acid-fast bacilli, SC on Lowenstein-Jensen medium, or a Hain test. Results Overall, 1,767 patients were enrolled and screened of which; 1,017 (57.6%) were female, median age was 33 (IQR, 27–41), and median CD4+ cell count was 385 (IQR, 229–563) cells/mm3. Of the patients screened, 138 (7.8%) were diagnosed with TB of which; 125 (90.5%) were laboratory-confirmed pulmonary TB. Of 404 (22.9%) patients who screened positive and 1,363 (77.1%) who screened negative, 79 (19.5%) and 59 (4.3%), respectively, were diagnosed with TB. For laboratory-confirmed TB, the tool had a sensitivity of 54.4% (95% CI 45.3–63.3), specificity of 79.5% (95% CI 77.5–81.5), PPV of 16.8% and NPV of 95.8%. Conclusion TB prevalence among PLHIV newly enrolling into HIV care and treatment was 65 times greater than the overall population prevalence. However, the performance of the tool was poorer than the predicted performance of the WHO

  2. A Preliminary Investigation of the Spence Children's Anxiety Parent Scale as a Screening Tool for Anxiety in Young People with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zainal, Hani; Magiati, Iliana; Tan, Julianne Wen-Li; Sung, Min; Fung, Daniel S.; Howlin, Patricia

    2014-01-01

    Despite high rates of clinically elevated anxiety difficulties in children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), very few studies have systematically examined the usefulness of commonly used caregiver report anxiety screening tools with this population. This study investigated the use of the Spence Children's Anxiety…

  3. The Screening Tool of Feeding Problems Applied to Children (STEP-CHILD): Psychometric Characteristics and Associations with Child and Parent Variables

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seiverling, Laura; Hendy, Helen M.; Williams, Keith

    2011-01-01

    The present study evaluated the 23-item Screening Tool for Feeding Problems (STEP; Matson & Kuhn, 2001) with a sample of children referred to a hospital-based feeding clinic to examine the scale's psychometric characteristics and then demonstrate how a children's revision of the STEP, the STEP-CHILD is associated with child and parent variables.…

  4. 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

    This study presents AtheroCloud™ - a novel cloud-based smart carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT) measurement tool using B-mode ultrasound for stroke/cardiovascular risk assessment and its stratification. This is an anytime-anywhere clinical tool for routine screening and multi-center clinical trials. In this pilot study, the physician can upload ultrasound scans in one of the following formats (DICOM, JPEG, BMP, PNG, GIF or TIFF) directly into the proprietary cloud of AtheroPoint from the local server of the physician's office. They can then run the intelligent and automated AtheroCloud™ cIMT measurements in point-of-care settings in less than five seconds per image, while saving the vascular reports in the cloud. We statistically benchmark AtheroCloud™ cIMT readings against sonographer (a registered vascular technologist) readings and manual measurements derived from the tracings of the radiologist. One hundred patients (75 M/25 F, mean age: 68±11 years), IRB approved, Toho University, Japan, consisted of Left/Right common carotid artery (CCA) artery (200 ultrasound scans), (Toshiba, Tokyo, Japan) were collected using a 7.5MHz transducer. The measured cIMTs for L/R carotid were as follows (in mm): (i) AtheroCloud™ (0.87±0.20, 0.77±0.20); (ii) sonographer (0.97±0.26, 0.89±0.29) and (iii) manual (0.90±0.20, 0.79±0.20), respectively. The coefficient of correlation (CC) between sonographer and manual for L/R cIMT was 0.74 (P<0.0001) and 0.65 (P<0.0001), while, between AtheroCloud™ and manual was 0.96 (P<0.0001) and 0.97 (P<0.0001), respectively. We observed that 91.15% of the population in AtheroCloud™ had a mean cIMT error less than 0.11mm compared to sonographer's 68.31%. The area under curve for receiving operating characteristics was 0.99 for AtheroCloud™ against 0.81 for sonographer. Our Framingham Risk Score stratified the population into three bins as follows: 39% in low-risk, 70.66% in medium-risk and 10.66% in high-risk bins

  5. 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

    This study presents AtheroCloud™ - a novel cloud-based smart carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT) measurement tool using B-mode ultrasound for stroke/cardiovascular risk assessment and its stratification. This is an anytime-anywhere clinical tool for routine screening and multi-center clinical trials. In this pilot study, the physician can upload ultrasound scans in one of the following formats (DICOM, JPEG, BMP, PNG, GIF or TIFF) directly into the proprietary cloud of AtheroPoint from the local server of the physician's office. They can then run the intelligent and automated AtheroCloud™ cIMT measurements in point-of-care settings in less than five seconds per image, while saving the vascular reports in the cloud. We statistically benchmark AtheroCloud™ cIMT readings against sonographer (a registered vascular technologist) readings and manual measurements derived from the tracings of the radiologist. One hundred patients (75 M/25 F, mean age: 68±11 years), IRB approved, Toho University, Japan, consisted of Left/Right common carotid artery (CCA) artery (200 ultrasound scans), (Toshiba, Tokyo, Japan) were collected using a 7.5MHz transducer. The measured cIMTs for L/R carotid were as follows (in mm): (i) AtheroCloud™ (0.87±0.20, 0.77±0.20); (ii) sonographer (0.97±0.26, 0.89±0.29) and (iii) manual (0.90±0.20, 0.79±0.20), respectively. The coefficient of correlation (CC) between sonographer and manual for L/R cIMT was 0.74 (P<0.0001) and 0.65 (P<0.0001), while, between AtheroCloud™ and manual was 0.96 (P<0.0001) and 0.97 (P<0.0001), respectively. We observed that 91.15% of the population in AtheroCloud™ had a mean cIMT error less than 0.11mm compared to sonographer's 68.31%. The area under curve for receiving operating characteristics was 0.99 for AtheroCloud™ against 0.81 for sonographer. Our Framingham Risk Score stratified the population into three bins as follows: 39% in low-risk, 70.66% in medium-risk and 10.66% in high-risk bins

  6. MACCS : Multi-Mission Atmospheric Correction and Cloud Screening tool for high-frequency revisit data processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrucci, B.; Huc, M.; Feuvrier, T.; Ruffel, C.; Hagolle, O.; Lonjou, V.; Desjardins, C.

    2015-10-01

    For the production of Level2A products during Sentinel-2 commissioning in the Technical Expertise Center Sentinel-2 in CNES, CESBIO proposed to adapt the Venus Level-2 , taking advantage of the similarities between the two missions: image acquisition at a high frequency (2 days for Venus, 5 days with the two Sentinel-2), high resolution (5m for Venus, 10, 20 and 60m for Sentinel-2), images acquisition under constant viewing conditions. The Multi-Mission Atmospheric Correction and Cloud Screening (MACCS) tool was born: based on CNES Orfeo Toolbox Library, Venμs processor which was already able to process Formosat2 and VENμS data, was adapted to process Sentinel-2 and Landsat5-7 data; since then, a great effort has been made reviewing MACCS software architecture in order to ease the add-on of new missions that have also the peculiarity of acquiring images at high resolution, high revisit and under constant viewing angles, such as Spot4/Take5 and Landsat8. The recursive and multi-temporal algorithm is implemented in a core that is the same for all the sensors and that combines several processing steps: estimation of cloud cover, cloud shadow, water, snow and shadows masks, of water vapor content, aerosol optical thickness, atmospheric correction. This core is accessed via a number of plug-ins where the specificity of the sensor and of the user project are taken into account: products format, algorithmic processing chaining and parameters. After a presentation of MACCS architecture and functionalities, the paper will give an overview of the production facilities integrating MACCS and the associated specificities: the interest for this tool has grown worldwide and MACCS will be used for extensive production within the THEIA land data center and Agri-S2 project. Finally the paper will zoom on the use of MACCS during Sentinel-2 In Orbit Test phase showing the first Level-2A products.

  7. Kindergarten Screens as Tools for the Early Identification of Children at Risk for Remediation or Grade Retention.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wenner, George

    1995-01-01

    Compares the capability of three kindergarten screening instruments to correctly predict which children (n=95) would be recommended for referral to remedial programs or for retention: a Piagetian-based instrument, a general screening test, and a language-specific screen. Although the Piagetian-based test had poor predictive qualities, both the…

  8. Cardiolipin fingerprinting of leukocytes by MALDI-TOF/MS as a screening tool for Barth syndrome[S

    PubMed Central

    Angelini, Roberto; Lobasso, Simona; Gorgoglione, Ruggiero; Bowron, Ann; Steward, Colin G.; Corcelli, Angela

    2015-01-01

    Barth syndrome (BTHS), an X-linked disease associated with cardioskeletal myopathy, neutropenia, and organic aciduria, is characterized by abnormalities of card­iolipin (CL) species in mitochondria. Diagnosis of the disease is often compromised by lack of rapid and widely available diagnostic laboratory tests. The present study describes a new method for BTHS screening based on MALDI-TOF/MS analysis of leukocyte lipids. This generates a “CL fingerprint” and allows quick and simple assay of the relative levels of CL and monolysocardiolipin species in leukocyte total lipid profiles. To validate the method, we used vector algebra to analyze the difference in lipid composition between controls (24 healthy donors) and patients (8 boys affected by BTHS) in the high-mass phospholipid range. The method of lipid analysis described represents an important additional tool for the diagnosis of BTHS and potentially enables therapeutic monitoring of drug targets, which have been shown to ameliorate abnormal CL profiles in cells. PMID:26144817

  9. The Stop-Bang Questionnaire as a Screening Tool for Obstructive Sleep Apnea-Induced Hypertension in Asian Population.

    PubMed

    Pavarangkul, Tanut; Jungtrakul, Thipphailin; Chaobangprom, Pichsinee; Nitiwatthana, Luxanawadee; Jongkumchok, Wisit; Morrakotkhiew, Weerachat; Kachenchart, Sitthan; Chindaprasirt, Jarin; Limpawattana, Panita; Srisaenpang, Sompong; Pinitsoontorn, Somdej; Sawanyawisuth, Kittisak

    2016-04-01

    Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a common public health issue. If left untreated, OSA may cause a large health economic burden from cardiovascular complications particularly stroke. The diagnosis of OSA can be made by polysomnography, but its availability is limited in the developing countries in Asia. STOP-BANG questionnaire is a good screening tool but may need some adjustment for Asian population. STOP-BANG stands for: Snoring history, Tired during the day, Observed stop breathing while sleep, High blood pressure, body mass index (BMI) more than 35 kg/m(2), Age more than 50 years, Neck circumference more than 40 cm and male Gender. We compared clinical features in STOP-BANG questionnaire between 42 OSA induced hypertension patients and 82 healthy control subjects in the Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Thailand. The best cutoff point for the BMI and the neck circumference were 24.5 kg/m(2) and 36 cm, respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of the BMI cutoff point were 97.2% and 91.40, while those of the neck circumference were 94.7% and 82.9%. In conclusion, the appropriate cutoff points of BMI and neck circumference for Thai STOP-BANG questionnaire were 25 kg/m(2) and 36 cm.

  10. Exploring the Potential of Venom from Nasonia vitripennis as Therapeutic Agent with High-Throughput Screening Tools

    PubMed Central

    Danneels, Ellen L.; Formesyn, Ellen M.; de Graaf, Dirk C.

    2015-01-01

    The venom from the ectoparasitoid wasp Nasonia vitripennis (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae) contains at least 80 different proteins and possibly even more peptides or other small chemical compounds, demonstrating its appealing therapeutic application. To better understand the dynamics of the venom in mammalian cells, two high-throughput screening tools were performed. The venom induced pathways related to an early stress response and activated reporters that suggest the involvement of steroids. Whether these steroids reside from the venom itself or show an induced release/production caused by the venom, still remains unsolved. The proinflammatory cytokine IL-1β was found to be down-regulated after venom and LPS co-treatment, confirming the anti-inflammatory action of N. vitripennis venom. When analyzing the expression levels of the NF-κB target genes, potentially not only the canonical but also the alternative NF-κB pathway can be affected, possibly explaining some counterintuitive results. It is proposed that next to an NF-κB binding site, the promoter of the genes tested by the PCR array may also contain binding sites for other transcription factors, resulting in a complex puzzle to connect the induced target gene with its respective transcription factor. Interestingly, Nasonia venom altered the expression of some drug targets, presenting the venom with an exciting therapeutical potential. PMID:26046700

  11. Interphase cytogenetics of prostatic carcinoma in fine needle aspirate smears of radical prostatectomy specimens: A practical screening tool?

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, R.Y.; Troncoso, P.; El-Naggar, A.K.

    1994-09-01

    Identification of chromosomal aberrations that may be used for diagnostic or prognostic evaluation of prostatic adenocarcinoma has been the subject of great interest. In a previous study, we applied the fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) method on paraffin-embedded material to show that trisomy 7 was associated with the progression of human prostate cancer. In this study, we attempted to assess the utility of the FISH technique in detecting aneuploidy in fine needle aspirate (FNA) smears of prostatic tissues and to compare FISH results with that of DNA flow cytometry (FCM). Paired samples of normal and tumor FNA smears were obtained from 10 radical prostatectomy specimens. Dual-color chromosomes 7 and 9-specific centromeric DNA probes were used for FISH. FISH analysis demonstrated increased frequencies of trisomy 7 cells in all 10 tumors studied when compared with the paired normals. In contrast, 6 of 10 tumors were determined to be diploid by FCM. Our results show that FNA of radical prostatectomy specimens is a practical method for obtaining suitable material for both FISH and FCM analyses of prostate carcinoma. Thus, interphase FISH may be a practical screening tool to determine aneuploidy in FNA smears of prostatic carcinoma.

  12. Application of a fish DNA damage assay as a biological toxicity screening tool for metal plating wastewater

    SciTech Connect

    Choi, K.; Zong, M.; Meier, P.G.

    2000-01-01

    The utility of a fish DNA damage assay as a rapid monitoring tool was investigated. Metal plating wastewater was chosen as a sample because it contains various genotoxic metal species. Fish DNA damage assay results were compared to data generated from the conventional whole effluent toxicity (WET) test procedure. The Microtox{reg_sign} assay (Azur Environmental, Carlsbad, CA, USA) using Vibrio fischeri was also employed. Eleven samples from two metal plating companies were collected for this evaluation. For the fish DNA damage assay, 7-d-old fathead minnow larvae, Pimephales promelas, were utilized. They were exposed to a series of dilutions at 20 C for 2 h. Whole effluent toxicity tests conducted in this study included two acute toxicity tests with Daphnia magna and fathead minnows and two chronic toxicity tests with Ceriodaphnia dubia and fathead minnows. The fish DNA damage assay showed good correlations with both the acute and chronic WET test results, especially with those obtained with fathead minnows. The kappa values, an index of agreement, between the fish DNA damage assay and WET tests were shown to be acceptable. These findings imply that this novel fish DNA damage assay has use as an expedient toxicity screening procedure since it produces comparable results to those of the acute and chronic fathead minnow toxicity tests.

  13. Number of genera as a potential screening tool for assessing quality of bryophyte communities in Ohio wetlands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schumacher, William; Stapanian, Martin A.; Andreas, Barbara; Gara, Brian

    2016-01-01

    Bryophytes (mosses, liverworts, and hornworts) have numerous advantages as indicators of environmental quality. A quality assessment index for bryophyte species assemblages (BQAI) was developed for the State of Ohio, USA. Reliable identification of bryophytes to species often requires considerable training, practice, and time. In contrast, reliable identification to genera for most bryophytes in Ohio requires much less training. We identified 110 bryophyte species (14 liverworts and 96 mosses) belonging to 69 genera (13 liverwort and 56 moss) in 45 wetlands (27 emergent, 13 forested, and 5 shrub) in Ohio. As expected, there were more genera and higher BQAI scores in forested than in emergent wetlands. Number of genera was highly correlated (r ≥ 0.9) with BQAI in emergent and forested wetlands and for the combined set of wetlands. Number of genera and BQAI responded almost identically to an index of wetland disturbance. The results suggest that number of genera has potential as a screening tool for assessing bryophyte community quality in wetlands in some regions.

  14. The Stop-Bang Questionnaire as a Screening Tool for Obstructive Sleep Apnea-Induced Hypertension in Asian Population.

    PubMed

    Pavarangkul, Tanut; Jungtrakul, Thipphailin; Chaobangprom, Pichsinee; Nitiwatthana, Luxanawadee; Jongkumchok, Wisit; Morrakotkhiew, Weerachat; Kachenchart, Sitthan; Chindaprasirt, Jarin; Limpawattana, Panita; Srisaenpang, Sompong; Pinitsoontorn, Somdej; Sawanyawisuth, Kittisak

    2016-04-01

    Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a common public health issue. If left untreated, OSA may cause a large health economic burden from cardiovascular complications particularly stroke. The diagnosis of OSA can be made by polysomnography, but its availability is limited in the developing countries in Asia. STOP-BANG questionnaire is a good screening tool but may need some adjustment for Asian population. STOP-BANG stands for: Snoring history, Tired during the day, Observed stop breathing while sleep, High blood pressure, body mass index (BMI) more than 35 kg/m(2), Age more than 50 years, Neck circumference more than 40 cm and male Gender. We compared clinical features in STOP-BANG questionnaire between 42 OSA induced hypertension patients and 82 healthy control subjects in the Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Thailand. The best cutoff point for the BMI and the neck circumference were 24.5 kg/m(2) and 36 cm, respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of the BMI cutoff point were 97.2% and 91.40, while those of the neck circumference were 94.7% and 82.9%. In conclusion, the appropriate cutoff points of BMI and neck circumference for Thai STOP-BANG questionnaire were 25 kg/m(2) and 36 cm. PMID:27127598

  15. HiTSEE KNIME: a visualization tool for hit selection and analysis in high-throughput screening experiments for the KNIME platform

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    We present HiTSEE (High-Throughput Screening Exploration Environment), a visualization tool for the analysis of large chemical screens used to examine biochemical processes. The tool supports the investigation of structure-activity relationships (SAR analysis) and, through a flexible interaction mechanism, the navigation of large chemical spaces. Our approach is based on the projection of one or a few molecules of interest and the expansion around their neighborhood and allows for the exploration of large chemical libraries without the need to create an all encompassing overview of the whole library. We describe the requirements we collected during our collaboration with biologists and chemists, the design rationale behind the tool, and two case studies on different datasets. The described integration (HiTSEE KNIME) into the KNIME platform allows additional flexibility in adopting our approach to a wide range of different biochemical problems and enables other research groups to use HiTSEE. PMID:22607449

  16. An image-based software tool for screening retinal fundus images using vascular morphology and network transport analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clark, Richard D.; Dickrell, Daniel J.; Meadows, David L.

    2014-03-01

    As the number of digital retinal fundus images taken each year grows at an increasing rate, there exists a similarly increasing need for automatic eye disease detection through image-based analysis. A new method has been developed for classifying standard color fundus photographs into both healthy and diseased categories. This classification was based on the calculated network fluid conductance, a function of the geometry and connectivity of the vascular segments. To evaluate the network resistance, the retinal vasculature was first manually separated from the background to ensure an accurate representation of the geometry and connectivity. The arterial and venous networks were then semi-automatically separated into two separate binary images. The connectivity of the arterial network was then determined through a series of morphological image operations. The network comprised of segments of vasculature and points of bifurcation, with each segment having a characteristic geometric and fluid properties. Based on the connectivity and fluid resistance of each vascular segment, an arterial network flow conductance was calculated, which described the ease with which blood can pass through a vascular system. In this work, 27 eyes (13 healthy and 14 diabetic) from patients roughly 65 years in age were evaluated using this methodology. Healthy arterial networks exhibited an average fluid conductance of 419 ± 89 μm3/mPa-s while the average network fluid conductance of the diabetic set was 165 ± 87 μm3/mPa-s (p < 0.001). The results of this new image-based software demonstrated an ability to automatically, quantitatively and efficiently screen diseased eyes from color fundus imagery.

  17. Focused Decision Support: a Data Mining Tool to Query the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial Dataset and Guide Screening Management for the Individual Patient.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Arjun; Hostetter, Jason; Morrison, James; Wang, Kenneth; Siegel, Eliot

    2016-04-01

    The Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer (PLCO) Screening Trial enrolled ~155,000 participants to determine whether certain screening exams reduced mortality from prostate, lung, colorectal, and ovarian cancer. Repurposing the data provides an unparalleled resource for matching patients with the outcomes of demographically or diagnostically comparable patients. A web-based application was developed to query this subset of patient information against a given patient's demographics and risk factors. Analysis of the matched data yields outcome information which can then be used to guide management decisions and imaging software. Prognostic information is also estimated via the proportion of matched patients that progress to cancer. The US Preventative Services Task Force provides screening recommendations for cancers of the breast, colorectal tract, and lungs. There is wide variability in adherence of clinicians to these guidelines and others published by the Fleischner Society and various cancer organizations. Data mining the PLCO dataset for clinical decision support can optimize the use of limited healthcare resources, focusing screening on patients for whom the benefit to risk ratio is the greatest and most efficacious. A data driven, personalized approach to cancer screening maximizes the economic and clinical efficacy and enables early identification of patients in which the course of disease can be improved. Our dynamic decision support system utilizes a subset of the PLCO dataset as a reference model to determine imaging and testing appropriateness while offering prognostic information for various cancers. PMID:26385814

  18. Utility of the Pediatric Sleep Questionnaire and Pulse Oximetry as Screening Tools in Pediatric Patients with Suspected Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Peña-Zarza, Jose A.; Osona-Rodriguez de Torres, Borja; Gil-Sanchez, Jose Antonio; Figuerola-Mulet, Joan

    2012-01-01

    Objective. To assess the screening tools in snoring patients. Material and Methods. A retrospective review of data was conducted from children between 2 and 15 years old who were referred on suspicion of obstructive sleep apnea-hypopnea (OSAH) between June 2008 and June 2011. We excluded patients with significant comorbidities. Pediatric Sleep Questionnaire (PSQ), physical exam (PE), and pulse-oximetry data were collected and correlated with the results of the nightly polygraph at home. Results. We selected 98 patients. The 22-item version of the PSQ had sensitivity of 96% and specificity of 36.8%. The overall value of the clinic predictor of OSAH (PSQ and PE together) exhibited an increased specificity 57.6% with 94.6% of sensitivity. The nocturnal home oximetry method used alone was very specific, 92.1%, but had a lower sensitivity, 77.1%. The set of clinical assessment tools used together with pulse-oximetry screening provided excellent specificity 98.1% and a positive predictive value 94.1% globally. The performance of this screening tool is related with the severity of OSAH and accuracy is better in moderate and severe cases. Conclusion. The combination of clinical assessment and pulse-oximetry screening can provide a sufficient diagnostic approach for pediatric patients with suspected OSAH at least in moderate and severe cases. PMID:23471006

  19. Utility of the pediatric sleep questionnaire and pulse oximetry as screening tools in pediatric patients with suspected obstructive sleep apnea syndrome.

    PubMed

    Peña-Zarza, Jose A; Osona-Rodriguez de Torres, Borja; Gil-Sanchez, Jose Antonio; Figuerola-Mulet, Joan

    2012-01-01

    Objective. To assess the screening tools in snoring patients. Material and Methods. A retrospective review of data was conducted from children between 2 and 15 years old who were referred on suspicion of obstructive sleep apnea-hypopnea (OSAH) between June 2008 and June 2011. We excluded patients with significant comorbidities. Pediatric Sleep Questionnaire (PSQ), physical exam (PE), and pulse-oximetry data were collected and correlated with the results of the nightly polygraph at home. Results. We selected 98 patients. The 22-item version of the PSQ had sensitivity of 96% and specificity of 36.8%. The overall value of the clinic predictor of OSAH (PSQ and PE together) exhibited an increased specificity 57.6% with 94.6% of sensitivity. The nocturnal home oximetry method used alone was very specific, 92.1%, but had a lower sensitivity, 77.1%. The set of clinical assessment tools used together with pulse-oximetry screening provided excellent specificity 98.1% and a positive predictive value 94.1% globally. The performance of this screening tool is related with the severity of OSAH and accuracy is better in moderate and severe cases. Conclusion. The combination of clinical assessment and pulse-oximetry screening can provide a sufficient diagnostic approach for pediatric patients with suspected OSAH at least in moderate and severe cases. PMID:23471006

  20. Assessment of risk factors and test performance on malnutrition prevalence at admission using four different screening tools.

    PubMed

    Olivares, Josefina; Ayala, Luis; Salas-Salvadó, Jordi; Muñiz, Ma José; Gamundí, Antoni; Martínez-Indart, Lorea; Masmiquel L, Lluis

    2014-03-01

    Antecedentes y objetivos: La desnutrición es muy frecuente en los pacientes que ingresan en el hospital. El objetivo de nuestro estudio es a) determinar la prevalencia de desnutrición al ingreso en un hospital de tercer nivel e identificar los factores de riesgo para desnutrición. b) Estudiar la sensibilidad y especifidad de diferentes test de cribado de desnutrición comparados con las valoración global subjetiva (VGS). Material y métodos: Realizamos un estudio prospectivo a las 24 h del ingreso hospitalario a individuos (56.4% hombres con una edad media de 61,3 ± 17 años) utilizando 4 test de cribado diferentes: mininutritional assessment short form (MNA-SF), nutritional risk screening 2002 (NRS2002), malnutrition universal screening tool (MUST) y VGS. Además, se recogieron medidas antropométricas y comorbilidades. Resultados: La prevalencia global de desnutrición fue de 47.3%. Las tasas específicas fueron 54,2% para > 65 años, 40,7% en < 65 años (p = 0,002), 63,4% en las áreas médicas, 34,0% áreas quirúrgicas (p < 0,001). Los factores que influían en la presencia de desnutrición al ingreso fueron: cardiopatía (OR 1,74 IC 95% 1,16-2,60 p = 0,007) en el MNA-SF (AUC 0,62); hepatopatía (OR 4,45 IC 95% 1.9410,22 p < 0,001), > 65años (OR 2,10 IC 95% 1,19-3,93 p = 0,011), áreas médicas (OR 3,58 IC 95% 1,93-6,62 p < 0,001) en la VGS (AUC 0,96); neumopatía (OR 3,34 IC 95% 1,45-7,73 p = 0,005), áreas médicas (OR 2,55 IC 95% 1,09-5,98 p = 0,032) en el NRS 2002 (AUC 0,97). La pérdida de peso involuntaria fue común a todos los test. Conclusiones: La desnutrición es frecuente al ingreso hospitalario. La presencia de comorbilidades puede influir en la presencia de desnutrición al ingreso, sin embargo, podemos utilizar cualquiera de los tests propuestos para su detección en nuestro hospital.

  1. Machine tool locator

    DOEpatents

    Hanlon, John A.; Gill, Timothy J.

    2001-01-01

    Machine tools can be accurately measured and positioned on manufacturing machines within very small tolerances by use of an autocollimator on a 3-axis mount on a manufacturing machine and positioned so as to focus on a reference tooling ball or a machine tool, a digital camera connected to the viewing end of the autocollimator, and a marker and measure generator for receiving digital images from the camera, then displaying or measuring distances between the projection reticle and the reference reticle on the monitoring screen, and relating the distances to the actual position of the autocollimator relative to the reference tooling ball. The images and measurements are used to set the position of the machine tool and to measure the size and shape of the machine tool tip, and examine cutting edge wear. patent

  2. Use of whole-genus genome sequence data to develop a multilocus sequence typing tool that accurately identifies Yersinia isolates to the species and subspecies levels.

    PubMed

    Hall, Miquette; Chattaway, Marie A; Reuter, Sandra; Savin, Cyril; Strauch, Eckhard; Carniel, Elisabeth; Connor, Thomas; Van Damme, Inge; Rajakaruna, Lakshani; Rajendram, Dunstan; Jenkins, Claire; Thomson, Nicholas R; McNally, Alan

    2015-01-01

    The genus Yersinia is a large and diverse bacterial genus consisting of human-pathogenic species, a fish-pathogenic species, and a large number of environmental species. Recently, the phylogenetic and population structure of the entire genus was elucidated through the genome sequence data of 241 strains encompassing every known species in the genus. Here we report the mining of this enormous data set to create a multilocus sequence typing-based scheme that can identify Yersinia strains to the species level to a level of resolution equal to that for whole-genome sequencing. Our assay is designed to be able to accurately subtype the important human-pathogenic species Yersinia enterocolitica to whole-genome resolution levels. We also report the validation of the scheme on 386 strains from reference laboratory collections across Europe. We propose that the scheme is an important molecular typing system to allow accurate and reproducible identification of Yersinia isolates to the species level, a process often inconsistent in nonspecialist laboratories. Additionally, our assay is the most phylogenetically informative typing scheme available for Y. enterocolitica.

  3. Use of Whole-Genus Genome Sequence Data To Develop a Multilocus Sequence Typing Tool That Accurately Identifies Yersinia Isolates to the Species and Subspecies Levels

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Miquette; Chattaway, Marie A.; Reuter, Sandra; Savin, Cyril; Strauch, Eckhard; Carniel, Elisabeth; Connor, Thomas; Van Damme, Inge; Rajakaruna, Lakshani; Rajendram, Dunstan; Jenkins, Claire; Thomson, Nicholas R.

    2014-01-01

    The genus Yersinia is a large and diverse bacterial genus consisting of human-pathogenic species, a fish-pathogenic species, and a large number of environmental species. Recently, the phylogenetic and population structure of the entire genus was elucidated through the genome sequence data of 241 strains encompassing every known species in the genus. Here we report the mining of this enormous data set to create a multilocus sequence typing-based scheme that can identify Yersinia strains to the species level to a level of resolution equal to that for whole-genome sequencing. Our assay is designed to be able to accurately subtype the important human-pathogenic species Yersinia enterocolitica to whole-genome resolution levels. We also report the validation of the scheme on 386 strains from reference laboratory collections across Europe. We propose that the scheme is an important molecular typing system to allow accurate and reproducible identification of Yersinia isolates to the species level, a process often inconsistent in nonspecialist laboratories. Additionally, our assay is the most phylogenetically informative typing scheme available for Y. enterocolitica. PMID:25339391

  4. A Malaria Diagnostic Tool Based on Computer Vision Screening and Visualization of Plasmodium falciparum Candidate Areas in Digitized Blood Smears

    PubMed Central

    Walliander, Margarita; Mårtensson, Andreas; Diwan, Vinod; Rahtu, Esa; Pietikäinen, Matti; Lundin, Mikael; Lundin, Johan

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Microscopy is the gold standard for diagnosis of malaria, however, manual evaluation of blood films is highly dependent on skilled personnel in a time-consuming, error-prone and repetitive process. In this study we propose a method using computer vision detection and visualization of only the diagnostically most relevant sample regions in digitized blood smears. Methods Giemsa-stained thin blood films with P. falciparum ring-stage trophozoites (n = 27) and uninfected controls (n = 20) were digitally scanned with an oil immersion objective (0.1 µm/pixel) to capture approximately 50,000 erythrocytes per sample. Parasite candidate regions were identified based on color and object size, followed by extraction of image features (local binary patterns, local contrast and Scale-invariant feature transform descriptors) used as input to a support vector machine classifier. The classifier was trained on digital slides from ten patients and validated on six samples. Results The diagnostic accuracy was tested on 31 samples (19 infected and 12 controls). From each digitized area of a blood smear, a panel with the 128 most probable parasite candidate regions was generated. Two expert microscopists were asked to visually inspect the panel on a tablet computer and to judge whether the patient was infected with P. falciparum. The method achieved a diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of 95% and 100% as well as 90% and 100% for the two readers respectively using the diagnostic tool. Parasitemia was separately calculated by the automated system and the correlation coefficient between manual and automated parasitemia counts was 0.97. Conclusion We developed a decision support system for detecting malaria parasites using a computer vision algorithm combined with visualization of sample areas with the highest probability of malaria infection. The system provides a novel method for blood smear screening with a significantly reduced need for visual examination and

  5. Evaluation of the Japanese version of the Developmental Coordination Disorder Questionnaire as a screening tool for clumsiness of Japanese children.

    PubMed

    Nakai, Akio; Miyachi, Taishi; Okada, Ryo; Tani, Iori; Nakajima, Shunji; Onishi, Masafumi; Fujita, Chikako; Tsujii, Masatsugu

    2011-01-01

    Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) is characterized by clumsiness and coordination difficulties. DCD interferes with academic performance and participation in physical activities and psychosocial functions, such as self-esteem, cognition, or emotion, from childhood through adolescence to adulthood. DCD is a common pediatric condition and its prevalence is estimated to be 6% worldwide. Although English questionnaires are available, there is no questionnaire to identify DCD in Japan, and therefore, no information on its prevalence is available. Recently, we developed the Japanese version of the Developmental Coordination Disorder Questionnaire (DCDQ-J). The purpose of this study was to describe the applicability of the DCDQ-J for use with a community-based population of children in Japan and to investigate the relationships between coordination and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) tendencies or intelligence. The DCDQ-J was completed by 6330 parents or guardians of children and adolescents. We employed the ADHD-rating scale and determined the intelligence quotient (IQ) of the children. Two-way analysis of variance showed that the scores linearly increased as the children's grades advanced in 2 subscales, namely, control during movement and fine motor. In contrast, non-linear changes were found in the scores of the general coordination subscale. The total scores of the DCDQ-J and ADHD-RS were significantly correlated, but no relationship between DCDQ-J scores and IQ was found. The DCDQ-J is expected to be a useful screening tool to identify and assess motor coordination difficulties of children in Japan and enable cross-cultural comparisons. PMID:21377832

  6. Multielement analysis in the fish hepatic cytosol as a screening tool in the monitoring of natural waters.

    PubMed

    Dragun, Zrinka; Fiket, Zeljka; Vuković, Marijana; Raspor, Biserka

    2013-03-01

    The possibility of direct measurement of trace elements in hepatic cytosol of European chub (Squalius cephalus) by high-resolution inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (HR ICP-MS) after cytosol dilution with Milli-Q water and subsequent acidification was investigated. Due to low detection limits of this procedure, determination of 13 elements (As, Cd, Co, Cu, Fe, Mn, Mo, Pb, Sb, Sn, Sr, V and Zn) was possible in the chub hepatic cytosol, exhibiting excellent measurement repeatability in duplicates. Some of these elements were also measured by HR ICP-MS in acid digested cytosols (Cd, Co, Cu, Fe, Mn, Mo, Sr, V and Zn). Good agreement of the results obtained after sample dilution and sample digestion indicated that complex organic matrix of hepatic cytosol did not affect measurement reliability. Cytosolic concentrations of 13 trace elements in the chub liver were quantified in the following order: Fe, Zn>Cu>Mn>Mo>Sr, V, Cd>Co>As, Pb>Sn>Sb. Unlike Cd, Cu, Fe, Mn and Zn for which the cytosolic concentrations were previously reported after measurement by AAS, cytosolic concentrations of eight additional trace elements characteristic for the liver of chubs inhabiting the low contaminated river water were reported here for the first time (in nanogrammes per gramme)-Mo, 136.8-183.6; Sr, 32.7-63.0; V, 17.5-69.0; Co, 24.3-30.7; As, 9.9-29.5; Pb, 5.8-35.6; Sn, 5.5-12.4; and Sb, 0.9-2.6. The simultaneous measurement of large number of trace elements in the cytosolic fractions of fish tissues, which comprise potentially metal-sensitive sub-cellular pools, could be beneficial as a screening tool in the monitoring of natural waters, because it would enable timely recognition of increased fish exposure to metals.

  7. Assessing similarity analysis of chromatographic fingerprints of Cyclopia subternata extracts as potential screening tool for in vitro glucose utilisation.

    PubMed

    Schulze, Alexandra E; De Beer, Dalene; Mazibuko, Sithandiwe E; Muller, Christo J F; Roux, Candice; Willenburg, Elize L; Nyunaï, Nyemb; Louw, Johan; Manley, Marena; Joubert, Elizabeth

    2016-01-01

    Similarity analysis of the phenolic fingerprints of a large number of aqueous extracts of Cyclopia subternata, obtained by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), was evaluated as a potential tool to screen extracts for relative bioactivity. The assessment was based on the (dis)similarity of their fingerprints to that of a reference active extract of C. subternata, proven to enhance glucose uptake in vitro and in vivo. In vitro testing of extracts, selected as being most similar (n = 5; r ≥ 0.962) and most dissimilar (n = 5; r ≤ 0.688) to the reference active extract, showed that no clear pattern in terms of relative glucose uptake efficacy in C2C12 myocytes emerged, irrespective of the dose. Some of the most dissimilar extracts had higher glucose-lowering activity than the reference active extract. Principal component analysis revealed the major compounds responsible for the most variation within the chromatographic fingerprints, as mangiferin, isomangiferin, iriflophenone-3-C-β-D-glucoside-4-O-β-D-glucoside, iriflophenone-3-C-β-D-glucoside, scolymoside, and phloretin-3',5'-di-C-β-D-glucoside. Quantitative analysis of the selected extracts showed that the most dissimilar extracts contained the highest mangiferin and isomangiferin levels, whilst the most similar extracts had the highest scolymoside content. These compounds demonstrated similar glucose uptake efficacy in C2C12 myocytes. It can be concluded that (dis)similarity of chromatographic fingerprints of extracts of unknown activity to that of a proven bioactive extract does not necessarily translate to lower or higher bioactivity.

  8. Feasibility of nephrinuria as a screening tool for the risk of pre-eclampsia: prospective observational study

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, Tianyue; Furuta, Itsuko; Akaishi, Rina; Kawabata, Kosuke; Chiba, Kentaro; Umazume, Takeshi; Ishikawa, Satoshi; Yamada, Takahiro; Morikawa, Mamoru; Minakami, Hisanori

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To investigate the possibility of nephrinuria as a screening tool for the risk of pre-eclampsia (PE). Design Prospective observational study. Setting A single university hospital. Changes in urinary nephrin:creatinine ratio (NCR, ng/mg) and protein:creatinine ratio (PCR, mg/mg) in pregnancy were determined. Significant proteinuria in pregnancy (SPIP) was defined as PCR>0.27. PE was diagnosed in women with both SPIP and hypertension. Participants 89 pregnant women in whom neither hypertension nor SPIP was present at enrolment, providing 31, 125 and 93 random urine samples during first, second and third trimesters, respectively. Results PE developed in 14 of the 89 women. NCR increased with increasing PCR in 14 women with PE (correlation coefficient, 0.862; p<0.0001). In contrast, NCR did not change significantly despite significant increases in PCR in 75 women with normotensive pregnancies defined as neither SPIP nor hypertension, indicating that there was little increase in nephrinuria over the physiological range of proteinuria in pregnancy. Relative risk of later development of PE among asymptomatic second and third trimester women with NCR (ng/mg) >122 (95th centile value for 75 women with normotensive pregnancies) was 5.93 (95% CI 2.59 to 13.6; 60% (6/10) vs 10% (8/79)) and 13.5 (95% CI 3.31 to 55.0; 75% (6/8) vs 5.5% (2/36)), respectively, compared with women with NCR≤122 at that time. Conclusions Nephrinuria was unlikely to increase in normal pregnancy. A certain NCR cut-off may efficiently differentiate women at higher risk of PE. PMID:27486123

  9. A novel useful tool of computerized touch panel-type screening test for evaluating cognitive function of chronic ischemic stroke patients.

    PubMed

    Deguchi, Kentaro; Kono, Syoichiro; Deguchi, Shoko; Morimoto, Nobutoshi; Kurata, Tomoko; Ikeda, Yoshio; Abe, Koji

    2013-10-01

    Cognitive and affective impairments are important non-motor features of ischemic stroke (IS) related to white-matter hyperintensity, including periventricular hyperintensity (PVH). To confirm the usefulness of a novel computerized touch panel-type screening test, we investigated cognitive and affective functioning among 142 IS patients and 105 age-and gender-matched normal control subjects. Assessment using the mini-mental state examination, Hasegawa Dementia Scale-Revised, and frontal assessment battery revealed reduced cognitive function in IS patients, with the most severe reduction exhibited by cardiogenic embolism patients, followed by lacunar infarction patients, and atherothrombotic infarction patients. Our novel touch panel screening test revealed a similar pattern of results. In addition, PVH grading, classified using Fazekas' magnetic resonance imaging method, was also correlated with cognitive decline and touch panel screening test performance. In contrast, affective function, assessed with the 15-item Geriatric Depression Scale, vitality index, and apathy scale, was not significantly decreased in IS, and did not correlate with touch panel screening test results or PVH, although the number of microbleeds was correlated with apathy scale results. The present findings revealed that IS and PVH grading were significantly correlated with decline in general cognitive status (mini-mental state examination and Hasegawa Dementia Scale-Revised) and frontal lobe function (frontal assessment battery). Performance on all touch panel screening tests was correlated with IS and PVH grading, but was largely independent of depression or apathy. Touch panel screening tests were easily understood and performed by almost all patients with mild cognitive and motor dysfunction, due to visually clear images and simple methods not involving detailed manual-handling tasks such as writing. Touch panel screening tests may provide a useful tool for the early screening of cognitive

  10. Teaching Tools to Engage Anishinaabek First Nations Women in Cervical Cancer Screening: Report of an Educational Workshop

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zehbe, Ingeborg; Wood, Brianne; Wakewich, Pamela; Maar, Marion; Escott, Nicholas; Jumah, Naana; Little, Julian

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To explore educational strategies for engaging First Nations women in Canada to attend cervical cancer screening. Design: Within a participatory action research framework, semi-structured interviews with health-care providers in First Nations communities revealed that education about the value of screening is perceived as being a key…

  11. A self-assessment tool for screening young adults at risk of type 2 diabetes using Strong Heart Family Study data

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Fengxia; Cha, EunSeok; Lee, Elisa T.; Mayberry, Robert M.; Wang, Wenyu; Umpierrez, Guillermo

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of this study is to characterize risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes in young adults ages 18–29 in order to develop a non-invasive risk assessment tool for use with younger American populations. Methods The self-assessment tool was developed using the Strong Heart Family Study data. A total of 590 young American Indian adults aged 18–29 (males=242) with normoglycemia and not receiving diabetes treatment were included. Risk factors recommended by the American Diabetes Association were used to assess diabetes risk in these young adults. A logistic regression model was developed to calculate the predicted probability. The area under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUROC) was used to evaluate the model. Results The final model showed that parental history of diabetes, obesity level, alcohol consumption, and high fasting glucose even within normal range were significantly associated with onset of prediabetes or diabetes in 5 years. The AUROC value was 0.68 with original and validated data, indicating the risk assessment tool had reasonably good discrimination ability. Conclusions This new non-invasive screening tool, based on data from American Indian young adults, has potential to screen young adults’ early-onset diabetes risk. Future studies are warranted to test this risk assessment tool in other racial/ethnic young adults. PMID:27480523

  12. Small molecule screening in zebrafish: an in vivo approach to identifying new chemical tools and drug leads

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    In the past two decades, zebrafish genetic screens have identified a wealth of mutations that have been essential to the understanding of development and disease biology. More recently, chemical screens in zebrafish have identified small molecules that can modulate specific developmental and behavioural processes. Zebrafish are a unique vertebrate system in which to study chemical genetic systems, identify drug leads, and explore new applications for known drugs. Here, we discuss some of the advantages of using zebrafish in chemical biology, and describe some important and creative examples of small molecule screening, drug discovery and target identification. PMID:20540792

  13. Sensitivity and specificity of waist circumference as a single screening tool for identification of overweight and obesity among Malaysian adults.

    PubMed

    Kee, C C; Jamaiyah, H; Geeta, A; Ali, Z Ahmad; Safiza, M N Noor; Suzana, S; Khor, G L; Rahmah, R; Jamalludin, A R; Sumarni, M G; Lim, K H; Faudzi, Y Ahmad; Amal, N M

    2011-12-01

    Generalised obesity and central obesity are risk factors for Type II diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular diseases. Waist circumference (WC) has been suggested as a single screening tool for identification of overweight or obese subjects in lieu of the body mass index (BMI) for weight management in public health program. Currently, the recommended waist circumference cut-off points of > or = 94cm for men and > or =80cm for women (waist action level 1) and > or = 102cm for men and > or = 88cm for women (waist action level 2) used for identification of overweight and obesity are based on studies in Caucasian populations. The objective of this study was to assess the sensitivity and specificity of the recommended waist action levels, and to determine optimal WC cut-off points for identification of overweight or obesity with central fat distribution based on BMI for Malaysian adults. Data from 32,773 subjects (14,982 men and 17,791 women) aged 18 and above who participated in the Third National Health Morbidity Survey in 2006 were analysed. Sensitivity and specificity of WC at waist action level 1 were 48.3% and 97.5% for men; and 84.2% and 80.6% for women when compared to the cut-off points based on BMI > or = 25kg/m2. At waist action level 2, sensitivity and specificity were 52.4% and 98.0% for men, and 79.2% and 85.4% for women when compared with the cut-off points based on BMI (> or = 30 kg/m2). Receiver operating characteristic analyses showed that the appropriatescreening cut-off points for WC to identify subjects with overweight (> or = 25kg/m2) was 86.0cm (sensitivity=83.6%, specificity=82.5%) for men, and 79.1cm (sensitivity=85.0%, specificity=79.5%) for women. Waist circumference cut-off points to identify obese subjects (BMI > or = 30 kg/m2) was 93.2cm (sensitivity=86.5%, specificity=85.7%) for men and 85.2cm (sensitivity=77.9%, specificity=78.0%) for women. Our findings demonstrated that the current recommended waist circumference cut-off points have low

  14. Development of a web-based tool for automated processing and cataloging of a unique combinatorial drug screen.

    PubMed

    Dalecki, Alex G; Wolschendorf, Frank

    2016-07-01

    Facing totally resistant bacteria, traditional drug discovery efforts have proven to be of limited use in replenishing our depleted arsenal of therapeutic antibiotics. Recently, the natural anti-bacterial properties of metal ions in synergy with metal-coordinating ligands have shown potential for generating new molecule candidates with potential therapeutic downstream applications. We recently developed a novel combinatorial screening approach to identify compounds with copper-dependent anti-bacterial properties. Through a parallel screening technique, the assay distinguishes between copper-dependent and independent activities against Mycobacterium tuberculosis with hits being defined as compounds with copper-dependent activities. These activities must then be linked to a compound master list to process and analyze the data and to identify the hit molecules, a labor intensive and mistake-prone analysis. Here, we describe a software program built to automate this analysis in order to streamline our workflow significantly. We conducted a small, 1440 compound screen against M. tuberculosis and used it as an example framework to build and optimize the software. Though specifically adapted to our own needs, it can be readily expanded for any small- to medium-throughput screening effort, parallel or conventional. Further, by virtue of the underlying Linux server, it can be easily adapted for chemoinformatic analysis of screens through packages such as OpenBabel. Overall, this setup represents an easy-to-use solution for streamlining processing and analysis of biological screening data, as well as offering a scaffold for ready functionality expansion.

  15. Development of a web-based tool for automated processing and cataloging of a unique combinatorial drug screen.

    PubMed

    Dalecki, Alex G; Wolschendorf, Frank

    2016-07-01

    Facing totally resistant bacteria, traditional drug discovery efforts have proven to be of limited use in replenishing our depleted arsenal of therapeutic antibiotics. Recently, the natural anti-bacterial properties of metal ions in synergy with metal-coordinating ligands have shown potential for generating new molecule candidates with potential therapeutic downstream applications. We recently developed a novel combinatorial screening approach to identify compounds with copper-dependent anti-bacterial properties. Through a parallel screening technique, the assay distinguishes between copper-dependent and independent activities against Mycobacterium tuberculosis with hits being defined as compounds with copper-dependent activities. These activities must then be linked to a compound master list to process and analyze the data and to identify the hit molecules, a labor intensive and mistake-prone analysis. Here, we describe a software program built to automate this analysis in order to streamline our workflow significantly. We conducted a small, 1440 compound screen against M. tuberculosis and used it as an example framework to build and optimize the software. Though specifically adapted to our own needs, it can be readily expanded for any small- to medium-throughput screening effort, parallel or conventional. Further, by virtue of the underlying Linux server, it can be easily adapted for chemoinformatic analysis of screens through packages such as OpenBabel. Overall, this setup represents an easy-to-use solution for streamlining processing and analysis of biological screening data, as well as offering a scaffold for ready functionality expansion. PMID:27117032

  16. Early detection and prevention of domestic violence using the Women Abuse Screening Tool (WAST) in primary health care clinics in Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Yut-Lin, Wong; Othman, Sajaratulnisah

    2008-01-01

    Despite being an emergent major public health problem, little research has been done on domestic violence from the perspectives of early detection and prevention. Thus, this cross-sectional study was conducted to identify domestic violence among female adult patients attending health centers at the primary care level and to determine the relationship between social correlates of adult patients and domestic violence screening and subsequent help/health-seeking behavior if abused. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with 710 female adult patients from 8 health centers in Selangor who matched the inclusion criteria and consented to participate in the study, using a structured questionnaire that included adaptation of a validated 8-item Women Abuse Screening Tool (WAST). Statistical tests showed significant differences in ethnicity, income, and education between those screened positive and those screened negative for domestic violence. Of the participants, 92.4% reported that during consultations, doctors had never asked them whether they were abused by their husband/partner. Yet, 67.3% said they would voluntarily tell the doctor if they were abused by their husband/partner. The findings indicate that primary care has an important role in identifying domestic violence by applying the WAST screening tool, or an appropriate adaptation, with women patients during routine visits to the various health centers. Such assessment for abuse could be secondary prevention for the abused women, but more important, it will serve as primary prevention for nonabused women. This approach not only will complement the existing 1-stop crisis center policy by the Ministry of Health that copes with crisis intervention but also will spearhead efforts toward prevention of domestic violence in Malaysia.

  17. Acetylcholinesterase immobilized capillary reactors coupled to protein coated magnetic beads: A new tool for plant extract ligand screening

    PubMed Central

    Vanzolini, Kenia Lourenço; Jiang, Zhengjin; Zhang, Xiaoqi; Vieira, Lucas Campos Curcino; Corrêa, Arlene Gonçalvez; Cardoso, Carmen Lucia; Cass, Quezia Bezerra; Moaddel, Ruin

    2013-01-01

    The use of immobilized capillary enzyme reactors (ICERs) and enzymes coated to magnetic beads ((NT or CT)-MB) for ligand screening has been adopted as a new technique of high throughput screening (HTS). In this work the selected target was the enzyme acetylcholinesterase (AChE), which acts on the central nervous system and is a validated target for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, as well as for new insecticides. A new approach for the screening of plant extracts was developed based on the ligand fishing experiments and zonal chromatography. For that, the magnetic beads were used for the ligand fishing experiments and capillary bioreactors for the activity assays. The latter was employed also under non-linear conditions to determine the affinity constants of known ligands, for the first time, as well as for the active fished ligand. PMID:24148457

  18. Virtual screening for lead discovery.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yat T; Marshall, Garland R

    2011-01-01

    The identification of small drug-like compounds that selectively inhibit the function of biological targets has historically been a major focus in the pharmaceutical industry, and in recent years, has generated much interest in academia as well. Drug-like compounds are valuable as chemical genetics tools to probe biological pathways in a reversible, dose- and time-dependent manner for drug target identification. In addition, small molecule compounds can be used to characterize the shape and charge preferences of macromolecular binding sites, for both structure-based and ligand-based drug design. High-throughput screening is the most common experimental method used to identify lead compounds. Because of the cost, time, and resources required for performing high-throughput screening for compound libraries, the use of alternative strategies is necessary for facilitating lead discovery. Virtual screening has been successful in prioritizing large chemical libraries to identify experimentally active compounds, serving as a practical and effective alternative to high-throughput screening. Methodologies used in virtual screening such as molecular docking and scoring have advanced to the point where they can rapidly and accurately identify lead compounds in addition to predicting native binding conformations. This chapter provides instructions on how to perform a virtual screen using freely available tools for structure-based lead discovery. PMID:21318897

  19. Development and analysis of a low-cost screening tool to identify and classify hearing loss in children: a proposal for developing countries

    PubMed Central

    Samelli, Alessandra Giannella; Rabelo, Camila Maia; Vespasiano, Ana Paula Chaparin

    2011-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: A lack of attention has been given to hearing health in primary care in developing countries. A strategy involving low-cost screening tools may fill the current gap in hearing health care provided to children. Therefore, it is necessary to establish and adopt lower-cost procedures that are accessible to underserved areas that lack other physical or human resources that would enable the identification of groups at risk for hearing loss. The aim of this study was to develop and analyze the efficacy of a low-cost screening tool to identify and classify hearing loss in children. METHODS: A total of 214 2-to-10 year-old children participated in this study. The study was conducted by providing a questionnaire to the parents and comparing the answers with the results of a complete audiological assessment. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were constructed, and discriminant analysis techniques were used to classify each child based on the total score. RESULTS: We found conductive hearing loss in 39.3% of children, sensorineural hearing loss in 7.4% and normal hearing in 53.3%. The discriminant analysis technique provided the following classification rule for the total score on the questionnaire: 0 to 4 points – normal hearing; 5 to 7 points – conductive hearing loss; over 7 points – sensorineural hearing loss. CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that the questionnaire could be used as a screening tool to classify children with normal hearing or hearing loss and according to the type of hearing loss based on the total questionnaire score. PMID:22086526

  20. Learning algebra on screen and on paper: The effect of using a digital tool on students' understanding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jupri, Al; Drijvers, Paul; van den Heuvel-Panhuizen, Marja

    2016-02-01

    The use of digital tools in algebra education is expected to not only contribute to master skill, but also to acquire conceptual understanding. The question is how digital tools affect students" thinking and understanding. This paper presents an analysis of data of one group of three grade seventh students (12-13 year-old) on the use of a digital tool for algebra, the Cover-up applet for solving equations in particular. This case study was part of a larger teaching experiment on initial algebra enriched with digital technology which aimed to improve students" conceptual understanding and skills in solving equations in one variable. The qualitative analysis of a video observation, digital and written work showed that the use of the applet affects student thinking in terms of strategies used by students while dealing with the equations. We conclude that the effects of the use of the digital tool can be traced from student problem solving strategies on paper-and-pencil environment which are similar to strategies while working with the digital tool. In future research, we recommend to use specific theoretical lenses, such as the theory of instrumental genesis and the onto-semiotic approach, to reveal more explicit relationships between students" conceptual understanding and the use of a digital tool.

  1. Metabolomics combined with chemometric tools (PCA, HCA, PLS-DA and SVM) for screening cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) roots during postharvest physiological deterioration.

    PubMed

    Uarrota, Virgílio Gavicho; Moresco, Rodolfo; Coelho, Bianca; Nunes, Eduardo da Costa; Peruch, Luiz Augusto Martins; Neubert, Enilto de Oliveira; Rocha, Miguel; Maraschin, Marcelo

    2014-10-15

    Cassava roots are an important source of dietary and industrial carbohydrates and suffer markedly from postharvest physiological deterioration (PPD). This paper deals with metabolomics combined with chemometric tools for screening the chemical and enzymatic composition in several genotypes of cassava roots during PPD. Metabolome analyses showed increases in carotenoids, flavonoids, anthocyanins, phenolics, reactive scavenging species, and enzymes (superoxide dismutase family, hydrogen peroxide, and catalase) until 3-5days postharvest. PPD correlated negatively with phenolics and carotenoids and positively with anthocyanins and flavonoids. Chemometric tools such as principal component analysis, partial least squares discriminant analysis, and support vector machines discriminated well cassava samples and enabled a good prediction of samples. Hierarchical clustering analyses grouped samples according to their levels of PPD and chemical compositions.

  2. Suppressor Screens in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Li, Xin; Zhang, Yuelin

    2016-01-01

    Genetic screens have proven to be a useful tool in the dissection of biological processes in plants. Specifically, suppressor screens have been widely used to study signal transduction pathways. Here we provide a detailed protocol for ethyl methanesulfonate (EMS) mutagenesis used in our suppressor screens in Arabidopsis and discuss the basic principles behind suppressor screen design and downstream analyses. PMID:26577776

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Validation of a cell-based ELISA as a screening tool identifying anti-alphavirus small-molecule inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Spurgers, Kevin B; Hurt, Clarence R; Cohen, Jeffrey W; Eccelston, Lori T; Lind, Cathleen M; Lingappa, Vishwanath R; Glass, Pamela J

    2013-10-01

    Venezuelan (VEEV), eastern, and western equine encephalitis viruses, members of the genus Alphavirus, are causative agents of debilitative and sometimes fatal encephalitis. Although human cases are rare, these viruses pose a threat to military personnel, and to public health, due to their potential use as bioweapons. Currently, there are no licensed therapeutics for treating alphavirus infections. To address this need, small-molecules with potential anti-alphavirus activity, provided by collaborators, are tested routinely in live alphavirus assays utilizing time-consuming virus yield-reduction assays. To expedite the screening/hit-confirmation process, a cell-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was developed and validated for the measurement of VEEV infection. A signal-to-background ratio of >900, and a z-factor of >0.8 indicated the robustness of this assay. For validation, the cell-based ELISA was compared directly to results from virus yield reduction assays in a single dose screen of 21 compounds. Using stringent criteria for anti-VEEV activity there was 90% agreement between the two assays (compounds displaying either antiviral activity, or no effect, in both assays). A concurrent compound-induced cell toxicity assay effectively filtered out false-positive hits. The cell-based ELISA also reproduced successfully compound dose-response virus inhibition data observed using the virus yield reduction assay. With available antibodies, this assay can be adapted readily to other viruses of interest to the biodefense community. Additionally, it is cost-effective, rapid, and amenable to automation and scale-up. Therefore, this assay could expedite greatly screening efforts and the identification of effective anti-alphavirus inhibitors.

  6. The Lichtenberg Financial Decision Screening Scale (LFDSS): A new tool for assessing financial decision making and preventing financial exploitation.

    PubMed

    Lichtenberg, Peter A; Ficker, Lisa; Rahman-Filipiak, Analise; Tatro, Ron; Farrell, Cynthia; Speir, James J; Mall, Sanford J; Simasko, Patrick; Collens, Howard H; Jackman, John Daniel

    2016-01-01

    One of the challenges in preventing the financial exploitation of older adults is that neither criminal justice nor noncriminal justice professionals are equipped to detect capacity deficits. Because decision-making capacity is a cornerstone assessment in cases of financial exploitation, effective instruments for measuring this capacity are essential. We introduce a new screening scale for financial decision making that can be administered to older adults. To explore the scale's implementation and assess construct validity, we conducted a pilot study of 29 older adults seen by APS (Adult Protective Services) workers and 79 seen by other professionals. Case examples are included.

  7. The Lichtenberg Financial Decision Screening Scale (LFDSS): A new tool for assessing financial decision making and preventing financial exploitation

    PubMed Central

    Lichtenberg, P.A.; Howard, H; Simaskp, P.; Mall, S.; Speir, J.; Farrell, C.; Tatro, R; Rahman-Filipiak, A.; Ficker, L.J.

    2016-01-01

    One of the challenges in preventing the financial exploitation of older adults is that neither criminal justice nor noncriminal justice professionals are equipped to detect capacity deficits. Because decision-making capacity is a cornerstone assessment in cases of financial exploitation, effective instruments for measuring this capacity are essential. We introduce a new screening scale for financial decision making that can be administered to older adults. To explore the scale’s implementation and assess construct validity, we conducted a pilot study of 29 older adults seen by APS workers and 79 seen by other professionals. Case examples are included. PMID:27010780

  8. Placental transfer of maternally-derived IgA precludes the use of guthrie card eluates as a screening tool for primary immunodeficiency diseases.

    PubMed

    Borte, Stephan; Janzi, Magdalena; Pan-Hammarström, Qiang; von Döbeln, Ulrika; Nordvall, Lennart; Winiarski, Jacek; Fasth, Anders; Hammarström, Lennart

    2012-01-01

    There is a need for neonatal screening tools to improve the long-term clinical outcome of patients with primary immunodeficiency diseases (PID). Recently, a PCR-based screening method for both TRECs and KRECs using Guthrie card samples has been developed. However, the applicability of these excision circle assays is limited to patients with severe T or B cell lymphopenia (SCID, XLA and A-T), whereas the most common forms of PID are not detected. Absence of serum IgA is seen in a major fraction of patients with immunological defects. As serum IgA in newborns is considered to be of fetal origin, eluates from routinely collected dried blood spot samples might thus be suitable for identification of children with PID. To assess the applicability of such screening assays, stored Guthrie card samples were obtained from 47 patients with various forms of primary immunodeficiency diseases (SCID, XLA, A-T, HIGM and IgAD), 20 individuals with normal serum IgA levels born to IgA-deficient mothers and 51 matched healthy newborns. Surprisingly, normal serum IgA levels were found in all SCID, XLA, A-T and HIGM patients and, additionally, in all those IgAD patients born to IgA-sufficient mothers. Conversely, no serum IgA was found in any of the 16 IgAD patients born by IgA-deficient mothers. Moreover, half of the IgA-sufficient individuals born by IgA-deficient mothers also lacked IgA at birth whereas no IgA-deficient individuals were found among the controls. IgA in neonatal dried blood samples thus appears to be of both maternal and fetal origin and precludes its use as a reliable marker for neonatal screening of primary immunodeficiency diseases. PMID:22916257

  9. Body Mass Index and Skinfold Thickness Measurements as Body Composition Screening Tools in Caucasian and African American Youth

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bryan, Charity Leigh; Solmon, Melinda A.; Zanovec, Michael T.; Tuuri, Georgianna

    2011-01-01

    There is growing concern regarding childhood obesity and its impact on children's health, and many states and school districts have mandated that health assessments be conducted as part of physical education. Tools such as the FITNESSGRAM[R] can help teachers inform students and parents if students are above a healthy weight range. The FITNESSGRAM…

  10. ISPCAN Child Abuse Screening Tools Retrospective Version (ICAST-R): Delphi Study and Field Testing in Seven Countries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunne, Michael P.; Zolotor, Adam J.; Runyan, Desmond K.; Andreva-Miller, Inna; Choo, Wan Yuen; Dunne, Simon K.; Gerbaka, Bernard; Isaeva, Oksana; Jain, Dipty; Kasim, Mohd Sham; Macfarlane, Bonnie; Mamyrova, Nurgul; Ramirez, Clemencia; Volkova, Elena; Youssef, Randa

    2009-01-01

    Objectives: To gain consensus among an ethnically and linguistically diverse group of international child protection experts on the structure and content of a new survey tool for retrospective measurement of child abuse, and to determine the performance of the instrument through an international field trial with young adults. Methods: The…

  11. Enhancing Infant-Toddler Adjustment during Transitions to Child Care: A Screening and Intervention Tool for Practitioners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fernandez, Mari T.; Marfo, Kofi

    2005-01-01

    Children's successful adjustment to child care involves effectively managing their separation from parents. Persistent problems with separation interfere with other relationships and with learning opportunities. The authors of this article developed a tool that caregivers can use to identify adjustment difficulties in young children who are …

  12. XRIndex: a brief screening tool for individual differences in security threat detection in x-ray images

    PubMed Central

    Rusconi, Elena; Ferri, Francesca; Viding, Essi; Mitchener-Nissen, Timothy

    2015-01-01

    X-ray imaging is a cost-effective technique at security checkpoints that typically require the presence of human operators. We have previously shown that self-reported attention to detail can predict threat detection performance with small-vehicle x-ray images (Rusconi et al., 2012). Here, we provide evidence for the generality of such a link by having a large sample of naïve participants screen more typical dual-energy x-ray images of hand luggage. The results show that the Attention to Detail score from the autism-spectrum quotient (AQ) questionnaire (Baron-Cohen et al., 2001) is a linear predictor of threat detection accuracy. We then develop and fine-tune a novel self-report scale for security screening: the XRIndex, which improves on the Attention to Detail scale for predictive power and opacity to interpretation. The XRIndex is not redundant with any of the Big Five personality traits. We validate the XRIndex against security x-ray images with an independent sample of untrained participants and suggest that the XRIndex may be a useful aid for the identification of suitable candidates for professional security training with a focus on x-ray threat detection. Further studies are needed to determine whether this can also apply to trained professionals. PMID:26321935

  13. Development and validation of a screening tool to predict the risk of chronic low back pain in patients presenting with acute low back pain: a study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Traeger, Adrian; Henschke, Nicholas; Hübscher, Markus; Williams, Christopher M; Kamper, Steven J; Maher, Chris G; Moseley, G Lorimer; McAuley, James H

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Around 40% of people presenting to primary care with an episode of acute low back pain develop chronic low back pain. In order to reduce the risk of developing chronic low back pain, effective secondary prevention strategies are needed. Early identification of at-risk patients allows clinicians to make informed decisions based on prognostic profile, and researchers to select appropriate participants for secondary prevention trials. The aim of this study is to develop and validate a prognostic screening tool that identifies patients with acute low back pain in primary care who are at risk of developing chronic low back pain. This paper describes the methods and analysis plan for the development and validation of the tool. Methods/analysis The prognostic screening tool will be developed using methods recommended by the Prognosis Research Strategy (PROGRESS) Group and reported using the Transparent Reporting of a multivariable prediction model for Individual Prognosis Or Diagnosis (TRIPOD) statement. In the development stage, we will use data from 1248 patients recruited for a prospective cohort study of acute low back pain in primary care. We will construct 3 logistic regression models to predict chronic low back pain according to 3 definitions: any pain, high pain and disability at 3 months. In the validation stage, we will use data from a separate sample of 1643 patients with acute low back pain to assess the performance of each prognostic model. We will produce validation plots showing Nagelkerke R2 and Brier score (overall performance), area under the curve statistic (discrimination) and the calibration slope and intercept (calibration). Ethics and dissemination Ethical approval from the University of Sydney Ethics Committee was obtained for both of the original studies that we plan to analyse using the methods outlined in this protocol (Henschke et al, ref 11-2002/3/3144; Williams et al, ref 11638). PMID:26179647

  14. Hsp90 inhibitors, part 1: definition of 3-D QSAutogrid/R models as a tool for virtual screening.

    PubMed

    Ballante, Flavio; Caroli, Antonia; Wickersham, Richard B; Ragno, Rino

    2014-03-24

    The multichaperone heat shock protein (Hsp) 90 complex mediates the maturation and stability of a variety of oncogenic signaling proteins. For this reason, Hsp90 has emerged as a promising target for anticancer drug development. Herein, we describe a complete computational procedure for building several 3-D QSAR models used as a ligand-based (LB) component of a comprehensive ligand-based (LB) and structure-based (SB) virtual screening (VS) protocol to identify novel molecular scaffolds of Hsp90 inhibitors. By the application of the 3-D QSAutogrid/R method, eight SB PLS 3-D QSAR models were generated, leading to a final multiprobe (MP) 3-D QSAR pharmacophoric model capable of recognizing the most significant chemical features for Hsp90 inhibition. Both the monoprobe and multiprobe models were optimized, cross-validated, and tested against an external test set. The obtained statistical results confirmed the models as robust and predictive to be used in a subsequent VS.

  15. A geographic information system screening tool to tackle diffuse pollution through the use of sustainable drainage systems.

    PubMed

    Todorovic, Zorica; Breton, Neil P

    2014-01-01

    Sustainable drainage systems (SUDS) offer many benefits that traditional solutions do not. Traditional approaches are unable to offer a solution to problems of flood management and water quality. Holistic consideration of the wide range of benefits from SUDS can result in advantages such as improved flood resilience and water quality enhancement through consideration of diffuse pollution sources. Using a geographical information system (GIS) approach, diffuse pollutant sources and opportunities for SUDS are easily identified. Consideration of potential SUDS locations results in source, site and regional controls, leading to improved water quality (to meet Water Framework Directive targets). The paper will discuss two different applications of the tool, the first of which is where the pollutant of interest is known. In this case the outputs of the tool highlight and isolate the areas contributing the pollutants and suggest the adequate SUDS measures to meet the required criteria. The second application is where the tool identifies likely pollutants at a receiving location, and SUDS measures are proposed to reduce pollution with assessed efficiencies.

  16. Enzyme-based glucose delivery as a high content screening tool in yeast-based whole-cell biocatalysis.

    PubMed

    Grimm, T; Grimm, M; Klat, R; Neubauer, A; Palela, M; Neubauer, P

    2012-05-01

    The influence of glucose release on growth and biotransformation of yeasts was examined by using the medium EnBase® Flo in shake flasks. The medium contains a polysaccharide acting as substrate, which is degraded to glucose by the addition of an enzyme. In the present paper, this medium was adapted for the cultivation of yeasts by increasing the complex components (booster) and the enzyme concentrations to guarantee a higher glucose release rate. Important changes were an increase of the complex component booster to 10-15% and an increased glucose release by increasing the enzyme content to 15 U L(-1). The 20 yeasts investigated in the present work showed an improvement of growth and biomass production when cultivated with the EnBase medium in comparison to yeast extract dextrose (YED) medium. Values of optical densities (OD(600)) of approximately 40 AU (corresponding to over 60 g L(-1) wet cell weight) were achieved for all 20 yeast strains tested. During the following screening of the yeasts in whole-cell biotransformation, an improvement of the conversion for 19 out of the 20 yeasts cultivated with the EnBase Flo medium could be observed. The biomass from the EnBase Flo cultivation showed a higher conversion activity in the reduction of 2-butanone to (R/S)-2-butanol. The enantioselectivity (ee) of 15 yeast strains showed an improvement by using the EnBase medium. The number of yeasts with an ee >97% increased from zero with YED to six with EnBase medium. Thus, the use of a glucose release cultivation strategy in the screening process for transformation approaches provides significant benefits compared to standard batch approaches. PMID:22258642

  17. Harmonization of QSAR Best Practices and Molecular Docking Provides an Efficient Virtual Screening Tool for Discovering New G-Quadruplex Ligands.

    PubMed

    Castillo-González, Daimel; Mergny, Jean-Louis; De Rache, Aurore; Pérez-Machado, Gisselle; Cabrera-Pérez, Miguel Angel; Nicolotti, Orazio; Introcaso, Antonellina; Mangiatordi, Giuseppe Felice; Guédin, Aurore; Bourdoncle, Anne; Garrigues, Teresa; Pallardó, Federico; Cordeiro, M Natália D S; Paz-Y-Miño, Cesar; Tejera, Eduardo; Borges, Fernanda; Cruz-Monteagudo, Maykel

    2015-10-26

    Telomeres and telomerase are key players in tumorogenesis. Among the various strategies proposed for telomerase inhibition or telomere uncapping, the stabilization of telomeric G-quadruplex (G4) structures is a very promising one. Additionally, G4 stabilizing ligands also act over tumors mediated by the alternative elongation of telomeres. Accordingly, the discovery of novel compounds able to act on telomeres and/or inhibit the telomerase enzyme by stabilizing DNA telomeric G4 structures as well as the development of approaches efficiently prioritizing such compounds constitute active areas of research in computational medicinal chemistry and anticancer drug discovery. In this direction, we applied a virtual screening strategy based on the rigorous application of QSAR best practices and its harmonized integration with structure-based methods. More than 600,000 compounds from commercial databases were screened, the first 99 compounds were prioritized, and 21 commercially available and structurally diverse candidates were purchased and submitted to experimental assays. Such strategy proved to be highly efficient in the prioritization of G4 stabilizer hits, with a hit rate of 23.5%. The best G4 stabilizer hit found exhibited a shift in melting temperature from FRET assay of +7.3 °C at 5 μM, while three other candidates also exhibited a promising stabilizing profile. The two most promising candidates also exhibited a good telomerase inhibitory ability and a mild inhibition of HeLa cells growth. None of these candidates showed antiproliferative effects in normal fibroblasts. Finally, the proposed virtual screening strategy proved to be a practical and reliable tool for the discovery of novel G4 ligands which can be used as starting points of further optimization campaigns.

  18. The Landing Error Scoring System as a Screening Tool for an Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injury–Prevention Program in Elite-Youth Soccer Athletes

    PubMed Central

    Padua, Darin A.; DiStefano, Lindsay J.; Beutler, Anthony I.; de la Motte, Sarah J.; DiStefano, Michael J.; Marshall, Steven W.

    2015-01-01

    Context Identifying neuromuscular screening factors for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury is a critical step toward large-scale deployment of effective ACL injury-prevention programs. The Landing Error Scoring System (LESS) is a valid and reliable clinical assessment of jump-landing biomechanics. Objective To investigate the ability of the LESS to identify individuals at risk for ACL injury in an elite-youth soccer population. Design Cohort study. Setting Field-based functional movement screening performed at soccer practice facilities. Patients or Other Participants A total of 829 elite-youth soccer athletes (348 boys, 481 girls; age = 13.9 ± 1.8 years, age range = 11 to 18 years), of whom 25% (n = 207) were less than 13 years of age. Intervention(s) Baseline preseason testing for all participants consisted of a jump-landing task (3 trials). Participants were followed prospectively throughout their soccer seasons for diagnosis of ACL injuries (1217 athlete-seasons of follow-up). Main Outcome Measure(s) Landings were scored for “errors” in technique using the LESS. We used receiver operator characteristic curves to determine a cutpoint on the LESS. Sensitivity and specificity of the LESS in predicting ACL injury were assessed. Results Seven participants sustained ACL injuries during the follow-up period; the mechanism of injury was noncontact or indirect contact for all injuries. Uninjured participants had lower LESS scores (4.43 ± 1.71) than injured participants (6.24 ± 1.75; t1215 = −2.784, P = .005). The receiver operator characteristic curve analyses suggested that 5 was the optimal cutpoint for the LESS, generating a sensitivity of 86% and a specificity of 64%. Conclusions Despite sample-size limitations, the LESS showed potential as a screening tool to determine ACL injury risk in elite-youth soccer athletes. PMID:25811846

  19. Single-step cloning-screening method: a new tool for developing and studying high-titer viral vector producer cells.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, A F; Formas-Oliveira, A S; Guerreiro, M R; Tomás, H A; Alves, P M; Coroadinha, A S

    2015-09-01

    This article describes a novel method merging the cloning of viral vector producer cells with vector titer screening, allowing for screening 200-500 clones in 2 weeks. It makes use of a GFP separated into two fragments, S10 and S11 (Split GFP), fluorescing only upon transcomplementation. Producer cells carrying a S11 viral transgene are cloned in 96-well plates and co-cultured with target cells stably expressing S10. During the period of clone expansion, S11 viruses infect S10 target cells reconstituting the GFP signal. Transcomplemented fluorescence data provide direct estimation of the clone's productivity and can be analyzed in terms of density distribution, offering valuable information on the average productivity of the cell population and allowing the identification of high-producing clones. The method was validated by establishing a retrovirus producer from a nude cell line, in <3 months, inserting three vector constructs without clone selection or screening in between. Clones producing up to 10(8) infectious particles per ml were obtained, delivering optimal ratios of infectious-to-total particles (1 to 5). The method was additionally used to evaluate the production performance of HEK 293 and HEK 293T cell lines demonstrating that the latter sustains increased titers. Finally, it was used to study genetic manipulation of glutathione metabolism in retrovirus production showing that changing cell metabolism steers higher vector expression with titer increases of more than one order of magnitude.This method is a valuable tool not only for cell line development but also for genetic manipulation of viral vector and/or producer cells contributing to advancing the field of viral gene therapy.

  20. Suitability of the Patient Concerns Inventory as a holistic screening tool in routine head and neck cancer follow-up clinics.

    PubMed

    Rogers, S N; Lowe, D; Kanatas, A

    2016-05-01

    In patients with cancer of the head and neck, efficient screening for problems can improve care and the management of resources. We explored use of the Patient Concerns Inventory (PCI-HN) as a holistic screening tool in the follow up of these patients. Between August 2007 and January 2013, 464 patients completed the PCI-HN and the University of Washington Quality of Life questionnaire version 4 (UWQoL) immediately before their routine follow-up consultations. The median (IQR) number of items selected on the inventory was 3 (1-6). This was associated (p<0.001) with the number of serious problems (dysfunction) in the 12 UWQoL domains (Spearman's correlation, rs=0.51), overall QoL (rs=-0.41), and the 2 UWQoL subscale scores of physical (rs=-0.46) and social-emotional (rs=-0.53) function. Binary regression to predict an overall outcome of "less than good" indicated that use of the PCI could be better than just recording clinical characteristics. Some patients however, chose few PCI items and had numerous problems. The inventory may have a role in the screening of patients with cancer of the head and neck, particularly in relation to social-emotional function and overall QoL, and may have added value when used with the UWQoL-v4. The total number of PCI items selected is a useful predictor of QoL. Further research is required to confirm suitable limits, and to find out whether additional support and repeated use of the inventory over time improve QoL.

  1. Structure-based virtual screening as a tool for the identification of novel inhibitors against Mycobacterium tuberculosis 3-dehydroquinate dehydratase.

    PubMed

    Petersen, Guilherme O; Saxena, Shalini; Renuka, Janupally; Soni, Vijay; Yogeeswari, Perumal; Santos, Diogenes S; Bizarro, Cristiano V; Sriram, Dharmarajan

    2015-07-01

    3-Dehydroquinate dehydratase (DHQase), the third enzyme of the shikimate pathway, catalyzes the reversible reaction of 3-dehydroquinate into 3-dehydroshikimate. The aim of the present study was to identify new drug-like molecules as inhibitors for Mycobacterium tuberculosis DHQase employing structure-based pharmacophore modeling technique using an in house database consisting of about 2500 small molecules. Further the pharmacophore models were validated using enrichment calculations, and finally three models were employed for high-throughput virtual screening and docking to identify novel small molecules as DHQase inhibitors. Five compounds were identified, out of which, one molecule (Lead 1) showed 58% inhibition at 50μ M concentration in the Mtb DHQase assay. Chemical derivatives of the Lead 1 when tested evolved top two hits with IC50s of 17.1 and 31.5 μM as well as MIC values of 25 and 6.25 μg/mL respectively and no cytotoxicity up to 100 μM concentration. PMID:26043661

  2. The slug mucosal irritation (SMI) assay: development of a screening tool for the evaluation of ocular discomfort caused by shampoos.

    PubMed

    Lenoir, Joke; Claerhout, Ilse; Kestelyn, Philippe; Klomp, Andre; Remon, Jean-Paul; Adriaens, Els

    2011-12-01

    In this research, the slug mucosal irritation (SMI) assay was applied to predict ocular discomfort caused by shampoos to investigate the correlation between responses in slugs and humans. Several SMI experiments and a human eye irritation test (HEIT) were performed with 1 artificial tear solution (ArtTear) and 5 shampoos (A-E; 5%-dilution). In the HEIT, evaluation was performed by participants and an ophthalmologist at several time points. Analyses reveal that (1) a significant positive association existed between immediate stinging reaction reported by the participants and the mean total mucus produced by the slugs (MTMP) (Spearman's Rank correlation=0.986, p<0.001); (2) ArtTear was best tolerated in both tests; (3) moreover, all shampoos induced higher reactions than ArtTear and water; (4) Shampoo A induced the highest MTMP and received higher scores for immediate discomfort; (5) B was the best tolerated shampoo in both tests, while C, D and E resulted in more pronounced reactions; (6) lacrimation was found not to be statistically correlated with discomfort sensations reported by the participants. The SMI assay is a promising evaluation method for discomfort in the human eye. Screening prototype (eye) formulations with this assay allows formula optimization prior to a HEIT.

  3. Scratch Cell Test: A Simple, Cost Effective Screening Tool to Evaluate Self-Healing in Anti-Corrosion Coatings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rani, Amitha; Somaiah, Durga; Megha; Poddar, Mitalee

    2014-09-01

    A quick and simple scratch cell set up to evaluate the self-healing of an hybrid sol-gel (ormosil) coating was fabricated. This methacrylate-based anti-corrosion coating was applied on the aerospace aluminium alloy AA2024-T3, and cured at room temperature. This technique of evaluation requires minimum instrumentation. The inhibitors cerium nitrate, benzotriazole and 8-hydroxy quinoline (8-HQ) were used in the study. The self-healing ability of the inhibitors decreased in the following order: 8-HQ, BTZ and Ce. 8-HQ showed the highest self-healing ability and was comparable to the commercial hexavalent chromium conversion coating—Alodine. Spectroscopic analysis of the electrolyte and EDX of the coatings indicated the movement of the inhibitor from the coating to the site of damage, thereby effecting self-healing. It was observed that an increased inhibitor concentration in the coatings did not accelerate the healing process. Inhibitor release was slower in the coatings doped with inhibitor-loaded nano-containers, when compared to inhibitor-spiked coatings. This property of controlled release is desirable in self-healing coatings. Electro impedance studies further confirmed self-healing efficiency of the coatings. The scratch cell study reported here is the first of its kind with the ormosil under study on AA2024-T3 aluminium alloy. The results are encouraging and warranty a quick and simple qualitative screening of the self-healing potential of the inhibitors with minimum instrumentation.

  4. CRISPR/Cas9: An inexpensive, efficient loss of function tool to screen human disease genes in Xenopus.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharya, Dipankan; Marfo, Chris A; Li, Davis; Lane, Maura; Khokha, Mustafa K

    2015-12-15

    Congenital malformations are the major cause of infant mortality in the US and Europe. Due to rapid advances in human genomics, we can now efficiently identify sequence variants that may cause disease in these patients. However, establishing disease causality remains a challenge. Additionally, in the case of congenital heart disease, many of the identified candidate genes are either novel to embryonic development or have no known function. Therefore, there is a pressing need to develop inexpensive and efficient technologies to screen these candidate genes for disease phenocopy in model systems and to perform functional studies to uncover their role in development. For this purpose, we sought to test F0 CRISPR based gene editing as a loss of function strategy for disease phenocopy in the frog model organism, Xenopus tropicalis. We demonstrate that the CRISPR/Cas9 system can efficiently modify both alleles in the F0 generation within a few hours post fertilization, recapitulating even early disease phenotypes that are highly similar to knockdowns from morpholino oligos (MOs) in nearly all cases tested. We find that injecting Cas9 protein is dramatically more efficacious and less toxic than cas9 mRNA. We conclude that CRISPR based F0 gene modification in X. tropicalis is efficient and cost effective and readily recapitulates disease and MO phenotypes.

  5. The Montreal Cognitive Assessment: A Pilot Study of a Brief Screening Tool for Mild and Moderate Cognitive Impairment in HIV-Positive Veterans.

    PubMed

    Chartier, Maggie; Crouch, Pierre-Cédric; Tullis, Van; Catella, Stephanie; Frawley, Erin; Filanosky, Charles; Carmody, Timothy; McQuaid, John; Lampiris, Harry; Wong, Joseph K

    2015-01-01

    HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HANDs) are common, often go undetected, and can impact treatment outcomes. There is limited evidence on how to perform routine cognitive screening in HIV clinical settings. To address this, 44 HIV-positive males were recruited from a Veteran Affairs Infectious Disease clinic and completed the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA), International HIV Dementia Scale (IHDS), and Depression Anxiety and Stress Scale-21. In all, 50% scored below the MoCA cutoff and 36% scored below the IHDS cutoff. Current CD4 was the strongest predictor of an abnormal MoCA score (P = .007, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.987-0.998) and elevated depression was the second strongest predictor (P = .008, CI: 1.043-1.326). Combination antiviral therapy use and age were not significant predictors in this model. The MoCA appeared to be a reasonable screening tool to detect cognitive impairment in HIV-positive patients, and although it is not sufficient to diagnose HAND, it has the potential to provide meaningful clinical data. PMID:25487428

  6. Peptide array on cellulose support--a screening tool to identify peptides with dipeptidyl-peptidase IV inhibitory activity within the sequence of α-lactalbumin.

    PubMed

    Lacroix, Isabelle M E; Li-Chan, Eunice C Y

    2014-11-13

    The inhibition of the enzyme dipeptidyl-peptidase IV (DPP-IV) is an effective pharmacotherapeutic approach for the management of type 2 diabetes. Recent findings have suggested that dietary proteins, including bovine α-lactalbumin, could be precursors of peptides able to inhibit DPP-IV. However, information on the location of active peptide sequences within the proteins is far from being comprehensive. Moreover, the traditional approach to identify bioactive peptides from foods can be tedious and long. Therefore, the objective of this study was to use peptide arrays to screen α-lactalbumin-derived peptides for their interaction with DPP-IV. Deca-peptides spanning the entire α-lactalbumin sequence, with a frame shift of 1 amino acid between successive sequences, were synthesized on cellulose membranes using "SPOT" technology, and their binding to and inhibition of DPP-IV was studied. Among the 114 α-lactalbumin-derived decamers investigated, the peptides 60WCKDDQNPHS69 (αK(i) = 76 µM), 105LAHKALCSEK114 (K(i) = 217 µM) and 110LCSEKLDQWL119 (K(i) = 217 µM) were among the strongest DPP-IV inhibitors. While the SPOT- and traditionally-synthesized peptides showed consistent trends in DPP-IV inhibitory activity, the cellulose-bound peptides' binding behavior was not correlated to their ability to inhibit the enzyme. This research showed, for the first time, that peptide arrays are useful screening tools to identify DPP-IV inhibitory peptides from dietary proteins.

  7. Chronic Widespread Pain Drawn on a Body Diagram is a Screening Tool for Increased Pain Sensitization, Psycho-Social Load, and Utilization of Pain Management Strategies.

    PubMed

    Visser, Eric J; Ramachenderan, Jonathan; Davies, Stephanie J; Parsons, Richard

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the hypothesis that chronic widespread pain, (CWP) drawn by patients on a body diagram, could be used as a screening tool for increased pain sensitization, psycho-social load, and utilization of pain management strategies. The triage questionnaires of 144 adults attending a chronic pain outpatients' clinic were audited and the percentage pain surface area (PPSA) drawn on their body diagrams was calculated using the "rule of nines" (RON) method for burns area assessment. Outcomes were measured using the painDETECT Questionnaire (PD-Q) and other indices and compared using a nonrandomized, case-control method. It was found that significantly more subjects with CWP (defined as a PPSA ≥ 20%) reported high (≥ 19) PD-Q scores (suggesting pain "sensitization" or neuropathic pain) (P = 0.0002), "severe" or "extremely severe" anxiety scores on the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale-21 Items Questionnaire (P = 0.0270), ≥ 5 psycho-social stressors (P = 0.0022), ≥ 5 significant life events (P = 0.0098), and used ≥ 7 pain management strategies (PMS) (P < 00001), compared to control subjects with a lower PPSA. A Widespread Pain Index score ≥ 7 (OR = 11.36), PD-Q score ≥ 19 (OR = 4.46) and use of ≥ 7 PMS (OR = 5.49) were independently associated with CWP. This study demonstrates that calculating PPSA on a body diagram (using the RON method) is a valid and convenient "snapshot" screening tool to identify patients with an increased likelihood of pain sensitization, psycho-social load, and utilizing pain management resources.

  8. Epigenome: A Biomarker or Screening Tool to Evaluate Health Impact of Cumulative Exposure to Chemical and Non-Chemical Stressors.

    PubMed

    Olden, Kenneth; Lin, Yu-Sheng; Bussard, David

    2016-06-01

    Current risk assessment practices and toxicity information are hard to utilize for assessing the health impact of combined or cumulative exposure to multiple chemical and non-chemical stressors encountered in the "real world" environment. Non-chemical stressors such as heat, radiation, noise, humidity, bacterial and viral agents, and social factors, like stress related to violence and socioeconomic position generally cannot be currently incorporated into the risk assessment paradigm. The Science and Decisions report released by the National Research Council (NRC) in 2009 emphasized the need to characterize the effects of multiple stressors, both chemical and non-chemical exposures. One impediment to developing information relating such non-chemical stressors to health effects and incorporating them into cumulative assessment has been the lack of analytical tools to easily and quantitatively monitor the cumulative exposure to combined effects of stressors over the life course. PMID:27398233

  9. Epigenome: A Biomarker or Screening Tool to Evaluate Health Impact of Cumulative Exposure to Chemical and Non-Chemical Stressors.

    PubMed

    Olden, Kenneth; Lin, Yu-Sheng; Bussard, David

    2016-06-01

    Current risk assessment practices and toxicity information are hard to utilize for assessing the health impact of combined or cumulative exposure to multiple chemical and non-chemical stressors encountered in the "real world" environment. Non-chemical stressors such as heat, radiation, noise, humidity, bacterial and viral agents, and social factors, like stress related to violence and socioeconomic position generally cannot be currently incorporated into the risk assessment paradigm. The Science and Decisions report released by the National Research Council (NRC) in 2009 emphasized the need to characterize the effects of multiple stressors, both chemical and non-chemical exposures. One impediment to developing information relating such non-chemical stressors to health effects and incorporating them into cumulative assessment has been the lack of analytical tools to easily and quantitatively monitor the cumulative exposure to combined effects of stressors over the life course.

  10. Epigenome: A Biomarker or Screening Tool to Evaluate Health Impact of Cumulative Exposure to Chemical and Non-Chemical Stressors.

    PubMed

    Olden, Kenneth; Lin, Yu-Sheng; Bussard, David

    2016-04-01

    Current risk assessment practices and toxicity information are hard to utilize for assessing the health impact of combined or cumulative exposure to multiple chemical and non-chemical stressors encountered in the "real world" environment. Non-chemical stressors such as heat, radiation, noise, humidity, bacterial and viral agents, and social factors, like stress related to violence and socioeconomic position generally cannot be currently incorporated into the risk assessment paradigm. The Science and Decisions report released by the National Research Council (NRC) in 2009 emphasized the need to characterize the effects of multiple stressors, both chemical and non-chemical exposures. One impediment to developing information relating such non-chemical stressors to health effects and incorporating them into cumulative assessment has been the lack of analytical tools to easily and quantitatively monitor the cumulative exposure to combined effects of stressors over the life course.

  11. Epigenome: A Biomarker or Screening Tool to Evaluate Health Impact of Cumulative Exposure to Chemical and Non-Chemical Stressors.

    PubMed

    Olden, Kenneth; Lin, Yu-Sheng; Bussard, David

    2016-06-01

    Current risk assessment practices and toxicity information are hard to utilize for assessing the health impact of combined or cumulative exposure to multiple chemical and non-chemical stressors encountered in the "real world" environment. Non-chemical stressors such as heat, radiation, noise, humidity, bacterial and viral agents, and social factors, like stress related to violence and socioeconomic position generally cannot be currently incorporated into the risk assessment paradigm. The Science and Decisions report released by the National Research Council (NRC) in 2009 emphasized the need to characterize the effects of multiple stressors, both chemical and non-chemical exposures. One impediment to developing information relating such non-chemical stressors to health effects and incorporating them into cumulative assessment has been the lack of analytical tools to easily and quantitatively monitor the cumulative exposure to combined effects of stressors over the life course. PMID:27534725

  12. Epigenome: A Biomarker or Screening Tool to Evaluate Health Impact of Cumulative Exposure to Chemical and Non-Chemical Stressors

    PubMed Central

    Olden, Kenneth; Lin, Yu-Sheng; Bussard, David

    2016-01-01

    Current risk assessment practices and toxicity information are hard to utilize for assessing the health impact of combined or cumulative exposure to multiple chemical and non-chemical stressors encountered in the “real world” environment. Non-chemical stressors such as heat, radiation, noise, humidity, bacterial and viral agents, and social factors, like stress related to violence and socioeconomic position generally cannot be currently incorporated into the risk assessment paradigm. The Science and Decisions report released by the National Research Council (NRC) in 2009 emphasized the need to characterize the effects of multiple stressors, both chemical and non-chemical exposures. One impediment to developing information relating such non-chemical stressors to health effects and incorporating them into cumulative assessment has been the lack of analytical tools to easily and quantitatively monitor the cumulative exposure to combined effects of stressors over the life course. PMID:27398233

  13. Utility of a Pediatric Bleeding Questionnaire as a Screening Tool for von Willebrand Disease in Apparently Healthy Children

    PubMed Central

    Mittal, Nupur; Pedersen, Rachelle; James, Paula; Shott, Susan; Valentino, Leonard A.

    2015-01-01

    von Willebrand disease (VWD), an inherited bleeding disorder caused by deficiency or dysfunction of von Willebrand factor (VWF) is diagnosed when a personal and often a family history of excessive mucocutaneous bleeding is present along with abnormal laboratory studies. An accurate assessment of hemorrhagic symptoms is key in suspecting VWD but presents a challenge especially in children due to overlap between normal and abnormal bleeding. Bleeding questionnaire (BQ) scores have been validated in adults and have recently been validated in children with VWD for assessing bleeding severity. However there is limited data supporting their use prospectively in healthy children with bleeding complaints. The objectives of this study were to obtain normative data from children and validate a pediatric BQ to determine the discriminative ability of its total score and its individual components for identifying children likely to have VWD. Methods The pediatric BQ was administered to 1281 multiethnic, healthy children between 30 days and 18 years of age presenting to a general pediatric office and to 35 children with VWD based on VWF antigen, activity and multimer pattern. Results When children with total BQ scores of 3 or more were predicted to have VWD, the sensitivity was 97.2%, the specificity was 97.1%, the positive predictive value was 48.6%, and the negative predictive value was 99.9%. Conclusions The pediatric BQ may help discriminate a significant bleeding history from otherwise trivial bleeding and may be integrated into the primary care algorithm for evaluating children suspected of having VWD. PMID:25982122

  14. Genetic screening test for psoriatic arthritis and UVB irradiation potential responders: A new tool to identify psoriasis subpopulation patients?

    PubMed

    Lotti, Torello; Tognetti, Linda; Galeone, Massimiliano; Bruscino, Nicola; Moretti, Silvia; Giorgini, Simonetta

    2011-07-01

    Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is a psoriasis-associated inflammatory disease of the joints and enthuses. The occurrence of PsA is linked to the complex interplay of gene environment, and immune system. Genetic factors have long been recognized to play an important role in PsA. Genes within the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) region have been shown to be associated with PsA. These include genes coded in the HLA region, (especially Class I antigens) and non-HLA genes (i.e., MHC class I chain-related antigen A, MICA, and TNF-α genes). Association studies in PsA have also identified a number of genes outside MHC region, including interleukin-1 (IL-1) gene cluster, killer-cell immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs), and IL-23R genes. Established systemic treatments for moderate-severe psoriasis and PsA may be potentially dangerous and usually time consuming for the patient and often expensive for the National Health Systems. Tests which could predict which subset of psoriatic patients could develop the most severe forms of the disease (i.e., PsA) or will respond to well-established (UVB irradiation) or other systemic treatments are now required. The goal of genetic test screening is to rapidly and safely identify subjects for preventive or early treatment or extended surveillance prior to the onset of signs and symptoms. Genetic tests today represent a reliable investigation procedure which could rapidly and consistently improve the diagnostic ability of the dermatologist and contribute to the early and correct treatment of the different subsets of PsA.

  15. Assessing the Construct Validity and Internal Reliability of the Screening Tool Test Your Memory in Patients with Chronic Pain.

    PubMed

    Ojeda, B; Salazar, A; Dueñas, M; Torres, L M; Mico, J A; Failde, I

    2016-01-01

    Patients with chronic pain often complain about cognitive difficulties, and since these symptoms represent an additional source of suffering and distress, evaluating the cognitive status of these patients with valid and reliable tests should be an important part of their overall assessment. Although cognitive impairment is a critical characteristic of pain, there is no specific measure designed to detect these effects in this population. The objective was to analyze the psychometric properties of the "Test Your Memory" (TYM) test in patients with chronic pain of three different origins. A cross-sectional study was carried out on 72 subjects free of pain and 254 patients suffering from different types of chronic pain: neuropathic pain (104), musculoskeletal pain (99) and fibromyalgia (51). The construct validity of the TYM was assessed using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADs), Index-9 from MOS-sleep, SF-12, and through the intensity (Visual Analogical Scale) and duration of pain. An exploratory factor analysis was also performed and internal reliability was assessed using Cronbach's alpha. After adjusting for potential confounders the TYM could distinguish between pain and pain-free patients, and it was correlated with the: MMSE (0.89, p<0.001); HAD-anxiety (-0.50, p<0.001) and HAD-depression scales (-0.52, p<0.001); MOS-sleep Index-9 (-0.49, p<0.001); and the physical (0.49, p < .001) and mental components (0.55, p < .001) of SF-12. The exploratory structure of the TYM showed an 8-factor solution that explained 53% of the variance, and Cronbach's alpha was 0.66. The TYM is a valid and reliable screening instrument to assess cognitive function in chronic pain patients that will be of particular value in clinical situations.

  16. Assessing the Construct Validity and Internal Reliability of the Screening Tool Test Your Memory in Patients with Chronic Pain

    PubMed Central

    Ojeda, B.; Salazar, A.; Dueñas, M.; Torres, L. M.; Mico, J. A.; Failde, I.

    2016-01-01

    Patients with chronic pain often complain about cognitive difficulties, and since these symptoms represent an additional source of suffering and distress, evaluating the cognitive status of these patients with valid and reliable tests should be an important part of their overall assessment. Although cognitive impairment is a critical characteristic of pain, there is no specific measure designed to detect these effects in this population. The objective was to analyze the psychometric properties of the “Test Your Memory” (TYM) test in patients with chronic pain of three different origins. A cross-sectional study was carried out on 72 subjects free of pain and 254 patients suffering from different types of chronic pain: neuropathic pain (104), musculoskeletal pain (99) and fibromyalgia (51). The construct validity of the TYM was assessed using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADs), Index-9 from MOS-sleep, SF-12, and through the intensity (Visual Analogical Scale) and duration of pain. An exploratory factor analysis was also performed and internal reliability was assessed using Cronbach’s alpha. After adjusting for potential confounders the TYM could distinguish between pain and pain-free patients, and it was correlated with the: MMSE (0.89, p<0.001); HAD-anxiety (-0.50, p<0.001) and HAD-depression scales (-0.52, p<0.001); MOS-sleep Index-9 (-0.49, p<0.001); and the physical (0.49, p < .001) and mental components (0.55, p < .001) of SF-12. The exploratory structure of the TYM showed an 8-factor solution that explained 53% of the variance, and Cronbach’s alpha was 0.66. The TYM is a valid and reliable screening instrument to assess cognitive function in chronic pain patients that will be of particular value in clinical situations. PMID:27119165

  17. Genetic screening test for psoriatic arthritis and UVB irradiation potential responders: A new tool to identify psoriasis subpopulation patients?

    PubMed Central

    Lotti, Torello; Tognetti, Linda; Galeone, Massimiliano; Bruscino, Nicola; Moretti, Silvia; Giorgini, Simonetta

    2011-01-01

    Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is a psoriasis-associated inflammatory disease of the joints and enthuses. The occurrence of PsA is linked to the complex interplay of gene environment, and immune system. Genetic factors have long been recognized to play an important role in PsA. Genes within the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) region have been shown to be associated with PsA. These include genes coded in the HLA region, (especially Class I antigens) and non-HLA genes (i.e., MHC class I chain-related antigen A, MICA, and TNF-α genes). Association studies in PsA have also identified a number of genes outside MHC region, including interleukin-1 (IL-1) gene cluster, killer-cell immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs), and IL-23R genes. Established systemic treatments for moderate-severe psoriasis and PsA may be potentially dangerous and usually time consuming for the patient and often expensive for the National Health Systems. Tests which could predict which subset of psoriatic patients could develop the most severe forms of the disease (i.e., PsA) or will respond to well-established (UVB irradiation) or other systemic treatments are now required. The goal of genetic test screening is to rapidly and safely identify subjects for preventive or early treatment or extended surveillance prior to the onset of signs and symptoms. Genetic tests today represent a reliable investigation procedure which could rapidly and consistently improve the diagnostic ability of the dermatologist and contribute to the early and correct treatment of the different subsets of PsA. PMID:23130225

  18. Assessing the Construct Validity and Internal Reliability of the Screening Tool Test Your Memory in Patients with Chronic Pain.

    PubMed

    Ojeda, B; Salazar, A; Dueñas, M; Torres, L M; Mico, J A; Failde, I

    2016-01-01

    Patients with chronic pain often complain about cognitive difficulties, and since these symptoms represent an additional source of suffering and distress, evaluating the cognitive status of these patients with valid and reliable tests should be an important part of their overall assessment. Although cognitive impairment is a critical characteristic of pain, there is no specific measure designed to detect these effects in this population. The objective was to analyze the psychometric properties of the "Test Your Memory" (TYM) test in patients with chronic pain of three different origins. A cross-sectional study was carried out on 72 subjects free of pain and 254 patients suffering from different types of chronic pain: neuropathic pain (104), musculoskeletal pain (99) and fibromyalgia (51). The construct validity of the TYM was assessed using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADs), Index-9 from MOS-sleep, SF-12, and through the intensity (Visual Analogical Scale) and duration of pain. An exploratory factor analysis was also performed and internal reliability was assessed using Cronbach's alpha. After adjusting for potential confounders the TYM could distinguish between pain and pain-free patients, and it was correlated with the: MMSE (0.89, p<0.001); HAD-anxiety (-0.50, p<0.001) and HAD-depression scales (-0.52, p<0.001); MOS-sleep Index-9 (-0.49, p<0.001); and the physical (0.49, p < .001) and mental components (0.55, p < .001) of SF-12. The exploratory structure of the TYM showed an 8-factor solution that explained 53% of the variance, and Cronbach's alpha was 0.66. The TYM is a valid and reliable screening instrument to assess cognitive function in chronic pain patients that will be of particular value in clinical situations. PMID:27119165

  19. Nitrogen isotopes as a screening tool to determine the growing regimen of some organic and nonorganic supermarket produce from New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Rogers, Karyne M

    2008-06-11

    An isotopic study was performed on nine varieties of organically and conventionally grown vegetables from an organic food market and a chain supermarket in New Zealand. The main aim of the study was to assess the applicability of stable nitrogen isotopes as a screening tool to differentiate between organic and conventional growing conditions of various vegetable types sampled directly off supermarket shelves. This could be further used as the basis of a simple authentication tool to detect noncompliant organic farming practices and false labeling of organic produce. In this study, nitrogen isotopes are found to be an excellent way of identifying faster growing organic vegetables (maturity time to harvest of <80 days), as these vegetables tend to be significantly more enriched in (15)N than conventionally grown vegetables and natural soil N. For slower growing organic produce (maturity time to harvest of >80 days), more information would be required to understand isotopic variations and fractionation effects between vegetables and soil over time as the technique does not discriminate organic from conventional regimens for these vegetables with as much certainty.

  20. MLViS: A Web Tool for Machine Learning-Based Virtual Screening in Early-Phase of Drug Discovery and Development

    PubMed Central

    Korkmaz, Selcuk; Zararsiz, Gokmen; Goksuluk, Dincer

    2015-01-01

    Virtual screening is an important step in early-phase of drug discovery process. Since there are thousands of compounds, this step should be both fast and effective in order to distinguish drug-like and nondrug-like molecules. Statistical machine learning methods are widely used in drug discovery studies for classification purpose. Here, we aim to develop a new tool, which can classify molecules as drug-like and nondrug-like based on various machine learning methods, including discriminant, tree-based, kernel-based, ensemble and other algorithms. To construct this tool, first, performances of twenty-three different machine learning algorithms are compared by ten different measures, then, ten best performing algorithms have been selected based on principal component and hierarchical cluster analysis results. Besides classification, this application has also ability to create heat map and dendrogram for visual inspection of the molecules through hierarchical cluster analysis. Moreover, users can connect the PubChem database to download molecular information and to create two-dimensional structures of compounds. This application is freely available through www.biosoft.hacettepe.edu.tr/MLViS/. PMID:25928885

  1. Validity of subjective assessment as screening tool for dry eye disease and its association with clinical tests

    PubMed Central

    Bhatnagar, Kavita R; Pote, Sonali; Pujari, Sudeep; Deka, Dhiraj

    2015-01-01

    AIM To determine the role of subjective assessment using McMonnies dry eye questionnaire in diagnosing dry eye disease and its association with clinical tests. METHODS There were 500 patients screened for dry eye using McMonnies dry eye questionnaire between May to October 2013 at the outpatient Department of Ophthalmology of a medical college hospital. All 500 patients were subjected to clinical tests. Dry eye was defined as having one or more symptoms often or all the time. Positive signs were if one or both eyes revealed tear film breakup time (TBUT) of ≤10s, a Schirmer test score of ≤10 mm, a Rose Bengal staining score of ≥1, a Lissamine green staining score of ≥1 or existence of meibomian gland disease (≥grade 1). Statistical analysis was performed to describe the distribution of symptoms and signs, to assess the correlations between McMonnies score (MS) and variable clinical signs of dry eye, and to explore the association between dry eye symptoms and variable clinical signs. Analysis was performed using software package Epi info. A Probability (P) value using Chi-square test of <0.005 was taken as significant. RESULTS Dry eye prevalence with symptoms (questionnaire), Schirmer test, TBUT, Rose Bengal staining and Lissamine green staining was 25.6%, 15.20%, 20.80%, 23.60%, and 22.60% respectively. Among those with severe symptoms (MS>20), 75.86% had a low TBUT (<10s), 58.62% had a low Schirmer's I test (≤10 mm), 86.20% had Rose Bengal staining score of ≥1, 79.31% had Lissamine green staining score of ≥1. We found statistically significant associations between positive Schirmer test and arthritis (P<0.002), dryness elsewhere (P<0.001), contact lens use (P<0.002), systemic medication (P<0.0001), sleeping with eyes partly open (P<0.002), history of dry eyes treatment (P<0.0001), environmental factors (P<0.001), swimming (P<0.001). CONCLUSION Subjective assessment plays an important role in diagnosing dry eye disease. There is strong correlation

  2. Hypercoagulation screening as an innovative tool for risk assessment, early diagnosis and prognosis in cancer: the HYPERCAN study.

    PubMed

    Falanga, Anna; Santoro, Armando; Labianca, Roberto; De Braud, Filippo; Gasparini, Giampietro; D'Alessio, Andrea; Barni, Sandro; Iacoviello, Licia

    2016-04-01

    predictive of cancer diagnosis in an otherwise healthy subject and/or may be prognostic of cancer outcome, or of disease progression/relapse in cancer-affected individuals. Finally, the proposed screening with relatively simple and non-high-cost laboratory tests and the use of easy-obtainable peripheral blood samples add a very relevant translational value to this study.

  3. Hypercoagulation screening as an innovative tool for risk assessment, early diagnosis and prognosis in cancer: the HYPERCAN study.

    PubMed

    Falanga, Anna; Santoro, Armando; Labianca, Roberto; De Braud, Filippo; Gasparini, Giampietro; D'Alessio, Andrea; Barni, Sandro; Iacoviello, Licia

    2016-04-01

    predictive of cancer diagnosis in an otherwise healthy subject and/or may be prognostic of cancer outcome, or of disease progression/relapse in cancer-affected individuals. Finally, the proposed screening with relatively simple and non-high-cost laboratory tests and the use of easy-obtainable peripheral blood samples add a very relevant translational value to this study. PMID:27067979

  4. The use of salivary cytokines as a screening tool for oral squamous cell carcinoma : A review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    Osman, Tarig A; Costea, Daniela E; Johannessen, Anne C

    2012-01-01

    Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is the most common type of head and neck cancer. The 5-year survival rate has remained below 50% over the last two decades, and new tools for early diagnosis are needed. Saliva has been used for diagnosis of several systemic diseases, and its use for diagnosis of OSCC has been sought extensively. Among the many salivary analytes for diagnosis of OSCC, accumulating evidences indicate the possibility of using salivary cytokines. Overproduction of proinflammatory, proangiogenic cytokines by OSCC cells has been reported, and their role in tumor progression and angiogenesis is well established. However, many inflammatory conditions and immunological diseases could affect the levels of cytokines in serum and saliva. This article has reviewed publications in this matter, and some strengths and weaknesses have been pointed out. Conclusively, large-scale investigations are required for validation of the use of salivary cytokines for diagnosis of OSCC, with consideration to the influential role of periodontal inflammation in their levels. PMID:22923900

  5. The DrivingHealth® Inventory as a clinical screening tool-assessment of face validity and acceptance.

    PubMed

    Crisler, M C; Brooks, J O; Drouin, N; Schold Davis, E; Healy, S L; Kopera, K W; McKee, J A; Sifrit, K

    2013-10-01

    To investigate the use and potential for patient acceptance of the DrivingHealth(®) Inventory (DHI) in clinical practice, we administered the DHI to 360 community dwelling volunteers over age 50 at a Southeastern US rehabilitation hospital. Volunteers also completed surveys to document their health, driving habits, and impressions of the DHI. Volunteers reported strong agreement with statements that indicated that they believe the DHI measures abilities important for safe driving and that they would be willing to listen to advice about driving and safe mobility from medical professionals; however, responses to some items were more positive among drivers whose DHI results indicated no apparent loss of function that could impair driving. These results support the use of the DHI in clinical practice as a tool to raise awareness of factors that correlate to driving; however, further research will be necessary to investigate how the DHI may benefit diverse clinical populations. Experiences with using DHI as part of clinical practice are also discussed.

  6. The DrivingHealth® Inventory as a clinical screening tool-assessment of face validity and acceptance.

    PubMed

    Crisler, M C; Brooks, J O; Drouin, N; Schold Davis, E; Healy, S L; Kopera, K W; McKee, J A; Sifrit, K

    2013-10-01

    To investigate the use and potential for patient acceptance of the DrivingHealth(®) Inventory (DHI) in clinical practice, we administered the DHI to 360 community dwelling volunteers over age 50 at a Southeastern US rehabilitation hospital. Volunteers also completed surveys to document their health, driving habits, and impressions of the DHI. Volunteers reported strong agreement with statements that indicated that they believe the DHI measures abilities important for safe driving and that they would be willing to listen to advice about driving and safe mobility from medical professionals; however, responses to some items were more positive among drivers whose DHI results indicated no apparent loss of function that could impair driving. These results support the use of the DHI in clinical practice as a tool to raise awareness of factors that correlate to driving; however, further research will be necessary to investigate how the DHI may benefit diverse clinical populations. Experiences with using DHI as part of clinical practice are also discussed. PMID:24102591

  7. A Predictive Model to Estimate Knee-Abduction Moment: Implications for Development of a Clinically Applicable Patellofemoral Pain Screening Tool in Female Athletes

    PubMed Central

    Myer, Gregory D.; Ford, Kevin R.; Foss, Kim D. Barber; Rauh, Mitchell J.; Paterno, Mark V.; Hewett, Timothy E.

    2014-01-01

    Context: Prospective measures of high external knee-abduction moment (KAM) during landing identify female athletes at increased risk of patellofemoral pain (PFP). A clinically applicable screening protocol is needed. Objective: To identify biomechanical laboratory measures that would accurately quantify KAM loads during landing that predict increased risk of PFP in female athletes and clinical correlates to laboratory-based measures of increased KAM status for use in a clinical PFP injury-risk prediction algorithm. We hypothesized that we could identify clinical correlates that combine to accurately determine increased KAM associated with an increased risk of developing PFP. Design: Descriptive laboratory study. Setting: Biomechanical laboratory. Patients or Other Participants: Adolescent female basketball and soccer players (n = 698) from a single-county public school district. Main Outcome Measure(s): We conducted tests of anthropometrics, maturation, laxity, flexibility, strength, and landing biomechanics before each competitive season. Pearson correlation and linear and logistic regression modeling were used to examine high KAM (>15.4 Nm) compared with normal KAM as a surrogate for PFP injury risk. Results: The multivariable logistic regression model that used the variables peak knee-abduction angle, center-of-mass height, and hip rotational moment excursion predicted KAM associated with PFP risk (>15.4 NM of KAM) with 92% sensitivity and 74% specificity and a C statistic of 0.93. The multivariate linear regression model that included the same predictors accounted for 70% of the variance in KAM. We identified clinical correlates to laboratory measures that combined to predict high KAM with 92% sensitivity and 47% specificity. The clinical prediction algorithm, including knee-valgus motion (odds ratio [OR] = 1.46, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.31, 1.63), center-of-mass height (OR = 1.21, 95% CI = 1.15, 1.26), and hamstrings strength/body fat percentage (OR

  8. Developing symptom-based predictive models of endometriosis as a clinical screening tool: results from a multicenter study

    PubMed Central

    Nnoaham, Kelechi E.; Hummelshoj, Lone; Kennedy, Stephen H.; Jenkinson, Crispin; Zondervan, Krina T.

    2012-01-01

    Objective To generate and validate symptom-based models to predict endometriosis among symptomatic women prior to undergoing their first laparoscopy. Design Prospective, observational, two-phase study, in which women completed a 25-item questionnaire prior to surgery. Setting Nineteen hospitals in 13 countries. Patient(s) Symptomatic women (n = 1,396) scheduled for laparoscopy without a previous surgical diagnosis of endometriosis. Intervention(s) None. Main Outcome Measure(s) Sensitivity and specificity of endometriosis diagnosis predicted by symptoms and patient characteristics from optimal models developed using multiple logistic regression analyses in one data set (phase I), and independently validated in a second data set (phase II) by receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis. Result(s) Three hundred sixty (46.7%) women in phase I and 364 (58.2%) in phase II were diagnosed with endometriosis at laparoscopy. Menstrual dyschezia (pain on opening bowels) and a history of benign ovarian cysts most strongly predicted both any and stage III and IV endometriosis in both phases. Prediction of any-stage endometriosis, although improved by ultrasound scan evidence of cyst/nodules, was relatively poor (area under the curve [AUC] = 68.3). Stage III and IV disease was predicted with good accuracy (AUC = 84.9, sensitivity of 82.3% and specificity 75.8% at an optimal cut-off of 0.24). Conclusion(s) Our symptom-based models predict any-stage endometriosis relatively poorly and stage III and IV disease with good accuracy. Predictive tools based on such models could help to prioritize women for surgical investigation in clinical practice and thus contribute to reducing time to diagnosis. We invite other researchers to validate the key models in additional populations. PMID:22657249

  9. The potential use of spectral electromyographic fatigue as a screening and outcome monitoring tool of sarcopenic back muscle alterations

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    persons at risk for sarcopenia. Considering the clinical relevance of the IMF-EMG relative to the MF-EMG slope declines, spectral EMG may also be used as an outcome monitoring tool in elderly populations. PMID:24985941

  10. Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis of Circulating Cell-Free DNA Can Be Used as an Adjuvant Tool for Prostate Cancer Screening: A Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Changliang; Hu, Wei; Ding, Xu; Yuan, Chunhui

    2016-01-01

    As part of “liquid biopsy,” lots of literature indicated the potential diagnostic value of circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA) in the management of prostate cancer (PCa). However, the literature on the accuracy of cfDNA detection in PCa has been inconsistent. Hence, we performed this meta-analysis to assess the diagnostic value of cfDNA in PCa. A total of 19 articles were included in this analysis according to the inclusion and exclusion criteria. We then investigated two main subgroups in this meta-analysis, including qualitative analysis of abnormal level of cfDNA and qualitative analysis of single-gene methylation alterations. Overall, the results of quantitative analysis showed sensitivity of 0.73 (95% CI, 0.62–0.82) and specificity of 0.80 (95% CI, 0.70–0.87), with an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.83 (95% CI, 0.80–0.86). For qualitative assessment, the values were 0.34 (95% CI, 0.22–0.48), 0.99 (95% CI, 0.97–1.00), and 0.91 (95% CI, 0.88–0.93), respectively. Our results suggest the pooled specificity of each subgroup is much higher than the specificity of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). However, they are not recommended for PCa screening alone, because their sensitivities are not higher than the conventional serum biomarkers PSA. We conclude that analysis of cfDNA can be used as an adjuvant tool for PCa screening. PMID:27766004

  11. Diabetes in Danish Bank Voles (M. glareolus): Survivorship, Influence on Weight, and Evaluation of Polydipsia as a Screening Tool for Hyperglycaemia

    PubMed Central

    Schønecker, Bryan; Freimanis, Tonny; Sørensen, Irene Vejgaard

    2011-01-01

    Background Previous studies have concluded that the development of polydipsia (PD, a daily water intake ≥21 ml) among captive Danish bank voles, is associated with the development of a type 1 diabetes (T1D), based on findings of hyperglycaemia, glucosuria, ketonuria/-emia, lipemia, destroyed beta cells, and presence of autoantibodies against GAD65, IA-2, and insulin. Aim and Methods We retrospectively analysed data from two separate colonies of Danish bank voles in order to 1) estimate survivorship after onset of PD, 2) evaluate whether the weight of PD voles differed from non-PD voles, and, 3), evaluate a state of PD as a practical and non-invasive tool to screen for voles with a high probability of hypeglycaemia. In addition, we discuss regional differences related to the development of diabetes in Scandinavian bank voles and the relevance of the Ljungan virus as proposed etiological agent. Results We found that median survival after onset of PD is at least 91 days (lower/upper quartiles = 57/134 days) with a maximum recording of at least 404 days survivorship. The development of PD did not influence the weight of Danish bank voles. The measures of accuracy when using PD as predictor of hyperglycaemia, i.e. sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value, equalled 69%, 97%, 89%, and 89%, respectively. Conclusion The relatively long survival of Danish PD bank voles suggests potentials for this model in future studies of the long-term complications of diabetes, of which some observations are mentioned. Data also indicates that diabetes in Danish bank is not associated with a higher body weight. Finally, the method of using measurements of daily water intake to screen for voles with a high probability of hyperglycaemia constitutes a considerable refinement when compared to the usual, invasive, methods. PMID:21829666

  12. Cardio-Thoracic Ratio Is Stable, Reproducible and Has Potential as a Screening Tool for HIV-1 Related Cardiac Disorders in Resource Poor Settings

    PubMed Central

    Oni, Tolu; Thienemann, Friedrich; Omar-Davies, Nashreen; Wilkinson, Robert J.; Ntsekhe, Mpiko

    2016-01-01

    Background Cardiovascular disorders are common in HIV-1 infected persons in Africa and presentation is often insidious. Development of screening algorithms for cardiovascular disorders appropriate to a resource-constrained setting could facilitate timely referral. Cardiothoracic ratio (CTR) on chest radiograph (CXR) has been suggested as a potential screening tool but little is known about its reproducibility and stability. Our primary aim was to evaluate the stability and the inter-observer variability of CTR in HIV-1 infected outpatients. We further evaluated the prevalence of cardiomegaly (CTR≥0.5) and its relationship with other risk factors in this population. Methodology HIV-1 infected participants were identified during screening for a tuberculosis vaccine trial in Khayelitsha, South Africa between August 2011 and April 2012. Participants had a digital posterior-anterior CXR performed as well as history, examination and baseline observations. CXRs were viewed using OsiriX software and CTR calculated using digital callipers. Results 450 HIV-1-infected adults were evaluated, median age 34 years (IQR 30–40) with a CD4 count 566/mm3 (IQR 443–724), 70% on antiretroviral therapy (ART). The prevalence of cardiomegaly was 12.7% (95% C.I. 9.6%-15.8%). CTR was calculated by a 2nd reader for 113 participants, measurements were highly correlated r = 0.95 (95% C.I. 0.93–0.97) and agreement of cardiomegaly substantial κ = 0.78 (95% C.I 0.61–0.95). CXR were repeated in 51 participants at 4–12 weeks, CTR measurements between the 2 time points were highly correlated r = 0.77 (95% C.I 0.68–0.88) and agreement of cardiomegaly excellent κ = 0.92 (95% C.I. 0.77–1). Participants with cardiomegaly had a higher median BMI (31.3; IQR 27.4–37.4) versus 26.9; IQR 23.2–32.4); p<0.0001) and median systolic blood pressure (130; IQR 121–141 versus 125; IQR 117–135; p = 0.01). Conclusion CTR is a robust measurement, stable over time with substantial inter

  13. Temperature-controlled micro-TLC: a versatile green chemistry and fast analytical tool for separation and preliminary screening of steroids fraction from biological and environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Zarzycki, Paweł K; Slączka, Magdalena M; Zarzycka, Magdalena B; Bartoszuk, Małgorzata A; Włodarczyk, Elżbieta; Baran, Michał J

    2011-11-01

    This paper is a continuation of our previous research focusing on development of micro-TLC methodology under temperature-controlled conditions. The main goal of present paper is to demonstrate separation and detection capability of micro-TLC technique involving simple analytical protocols without multi-steps sample pre-purification. One of the advantages of planar chromatography over its column counterpart is that each TLC run can be performed using non-previously used stationary phase. Therefore, it is possible to fractionate or separate complex samples characterized by heavy biological matrix loading. In present studies components of interest, mainly steroids, were isolated from biological samples like fish bile using single pre-treatment steps involving direct organic liquid extraction and/or deproteinization by freeze-drying method. Low-molecular mass compounds with polarity ranging from estetrol to progesterone derived from the environmental samples (lake water, untreated and treated sewage waters) were concentrated using optimized solid-phase extraction (SPE). Specific bands patterns for samples derived from surface water of the Middle Pomerania in northern part of Poland can be easily observed on obtained micro-TLC chromatograms. This approach can be useful as simple and non-expensive complementary method for fast control and screening of treated sewage water discharged by the municipal wastewater treatment plants. Moreover, our experimental results show the potential of micro-TLC as an efficient tool for retention measurements of a wide range of steroids under reversed-phase (RP) chromatographic conditions. These data can be used for further optimalization of SPE or HPLC systems working under RP conditions. Furthermore, we also demonstrated that micro-TLC based analytical approach can be applied as an effective method for the internal standard (IS) substance search. Generally, described methodology can be applied for fast fractionation or screening of the

  14. Temperature-controlled micro-TLC: a versatile green chemistry and fast analytical tool for separation and preliminary screening of steroids fraction from biological and environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Zarzycki, Paweł K; Slączka, Magdalena M; Zarzycka, Magdalena B; Bartoszuk, Małgorzata A; Włodarczyk, Elżbieta; Baran, Michał J

    2011-11-01

    This paper is a continuation of our previous research focusing on development of micro-TLC methodology under temperature-controlled conditions. The main goal of present paper is to demonstrate separation and detection capability of micro-TLC technique involving simple analytical protocols without multi-steps sample pre-purification. One of the advantages of planar chromatography over its column counterpart is that each TLC run can be performed using non-previously used stationary phase. Therefore, it is possible to fractionate or separate complex samples characterized by heavy biological matrix loading. In present studies components of interest, mainly steroids, were isolated from biological samples like fish bile using single pre-treatment steps involving direct organic liquid extraction and/or deproteinization by freeze-drying method. Low-molecular mass compounds with polarity ranging from estetrol to progesterone derived from the environmental samples (lake water, untreated and treated sewage waters) were concentrated using optimized solid-phase extraction (SPE). Specific bands patterns for samples derived from surface water of the Middle Pomerania in northern part of Poland can be easily observed on obtained micro-TLC chromatograms. This approach can be useful as simple and non-expensive complementary method for fast control and screening of treated sewage water discharged by the municipal wastewater treatment plants. Moreover, our experimental results show the potential of micro-TLC as an efficient tool for retention measurements of a wide range of steroids under reversed-phase (RP) chromatographic conditions. These data can be used for further optimalization of SPE or HPLC systems working under RP conditions. Furthermore, we also demonstrated that micro-TLC based analytical approach can be applied as an effective method for the internal standard (IS) substance search. Generally, described methodology can be applied for fast fractionation or screening of the

  15. Identification of effective screening strategies for cardiovascular disease prevention in a developing country: using cardiovascular risk-estimation and risk-reduction tools for policy recommendations

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Recent increases in cardiovascular risk-factor prevalences have led to new national policy recommendations of universal screening for primary prevention of cardiovascular disease in Malaysia. This study assessed whether the current national policy recommendation of universal screening was optimal, by comparing the effectiveness and impact of various cardiovascular screening strategies. Methods Data from a national population based survey of 24 270 participants aged 30 to 74 was used. Five screening strategies were modelled for the overall population and by gender; universal and targeted screening (four age cut-off points). Screening strategies were assessed based on the ability to detect high cardiovascular risk populations (effectiveness), incremental effectiveness, impact on cardiovascular event prevention and cost of screening. Results 26.7% (95% confidence limits 25.7, 27.7) were at high cardiovascular risk, men 34.7% (33.6, 35.8) and women 18.9% (17.8, 20). Universal screening identified all those at high-risk and resulted in one high-risk individual detected for every 3.7 people screened, with an estimated cost of USD60. However, universal screening resulted in screening an additional 7169 persons, with an incremental cost of USD115,033 for detection of one additional high-risk individual in comparison to targeted screening of those aged ≥35 years. The cost, incremental cost and impact of detection of high-risk individuals were more for women than men for all screening strategies. The impact of screening women aged ≥45 years was similar to universal screening in men. Conclusions Targeted gender- and age-specific screening strategies would ensure more optimal utilisation of scarce resources compared to the current policy recommendations of universal screening. PMID:23442728

  16. Non-invasive 13C-glucose breath test using residual gas analyzer-mass spectrometry: a novel tool for screening individuals with pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Chiranjit; Maity, Abhijit; Banik, Gourab D; Som, Suman; Chakraborty, Arpita; Selvan, Chitra; Ghosh, Shibendu; Ghosh, Barnali; Chowdhury, Subhankar; Pradhan, Manik

    2014-09-01

    We report, for the first time, the clinical feasibility of a novel residual gas analyzer mass spectrometry (RGA-MS) method for accurate evaluation of the (13)C-glucose breath test ((13)C-GBT) in the diagnosis of pre-diabetes (PD) and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D). In T2D or PD, glucose uptake is impaired and results in blunted isotope enriched (13)CO2 production in exhaled breath samples. Using the Receiver operating characteristics (ROC) curve analysis, an optimal diagnostic cut-off point of the (13)CO2/(12)CO2 isotope ratios expressed as the delta-over-baseline (DOB) value, was determined to be δDOB(13)C‰ = 28.81‰ for screening individuals with non-diabetes controls (NDC) and pre-diabetes (PD), corresponding to a sensitivity of 100% and specificity of 94.4%. We also determined another optimal diagnostic cut-off point of δDOB(13)C‰ = 19.88‰ between individuals with PD and T2D, which exhibited 100% sensitivity and 95.5% specificity. Our RGA-MS methodology for the (13)C-GBT also manifested a typical diagnostic positive and negative predictive value of 96% and 100%, respectively. The diagnostic accuracy, precision and validity of the results were also confirmed by high-resolution optical cavity enhanced integrated cavity output spectroscopy (ICOS) measurements. The δDOB(13)C‰ values measured with RGA-MS method, correlated favourably (R(2) = 0.979) with those determined by the laser based ICOS method. Moreover, we observed that the effects of endogenous CO2 production related to basal metabolic rates in individuals were statistically insignificant (p = 0.37 and 0.73) on the diagnostic accuracy. Our findings suggest that the RGA-MS is a valid and sufficiently robust method for the (13)C-GBT which may serve as an alternative non-invasive point-of-care diagnostic tool for routine clinical practices as well as for large-scale diabetes screening purposes in real-time.

  17. Prostate cancer screenings

    MedlinePlus

    ... not do an accurate job of screening for prostate cancer. ... and anxiety, even if you do not have prostate cancer. Side effects from further testing. If your PSA test is higher than normal, you may need to ...

  18. ABPI against Colour Duplex Scan: A Screening Tool for Detection of Peripheral Arterial Disease in Low Resource Setting Approach to Validation.

    PubMed

    Weragoda, Janaka; Seneviratne, Rohini; Weerasinghe, Manuj C; Wijeyaratne, S M

    2016-01-01

    Background. In Sri Lanka the ABPI has not been used as a screening tool to detect peripheral arterial disease (PAD) in epidemiological studies. This study was conducted to determine the best cutoff value of ABPI to detect PAD in Sri Lankan population. Methods. The ABPI measured by arterial Doppler to detect PAD was validated against colour duplex scan as the criterion using 165 individuals referred to vascular laboratory, National Hospital Sri Lanka. In all selected individuals ABPI was measured and lower limb colour duplex scan was performed. Narrowing of luminal diameter of lower limb arteries 50% or more was considered as haemodynamically significant and having PAD. The discriminative performance of the ABPI was assessed using Receiver Operator Characteristic (ROC) curve and calculating the area under the curve (AUC). The sensitivity and specificity of different threshold levels of ABPI and the best cutoff value of ABPI to detect PAD were determined. Results. ABPI 0.89 was determined as the best cutoff value to identify individuals with PAD. At this level of ABPI high sensitivity (87%), specificity (99.1%), positive predictive value (98.9%), and negative predictive value (88.4%) were observed. Conclusion. ABPI ≤ 0.89 could be used as the best cut off value to detect PAD. PMID:27034837

  19. ABPI against Colour Duplex Scan: A Screening Tool for Detection of Peripheral Arterial Disease in Low Resource Setting Approach to Validation

    PubMed Central

    Seneviratne, Rohini; Weerasinghe, Manuj C.; Wijeyaratne, S. M.

    2016-01-01

    Background. In Sri Lanka the ABPI has not been used as a screening tool to detect peripheral arterial disease (PAD) in epidemiological studies. This study was conducted to determine the best cutoff value of ABPI to detect PAD in Sri Lankan population. Methods. The ABPI measured by arterial Doppler to detect PAD was validated against colour duplex scan as the criterion using 165 individuals referred to vascular laboratory, National Hospital Sri Lanka. In all selected individuals ABPI was measured and lower limb colour duplex scan was performed. Narrowing of luminal diameter of lower limb arteries 50% or more was considered as haemodynamically significant and having PAD. The discriminative performance of the ABPI was assessed using Receiver Operator Characteristic (ROC) curve and calculating the area under the curve (AUC). The sensitivity and specificity of different threshold levels of ABPI and the best cutoff value of ABPI to detect PAD were determined. Results. ABPI 0.89 was determined as the best cutoff value to identify individuals with PAD. At this level of ABPI high sensitivity (87%), specificity (99.1%), positive predictive value (98.9%), and negative predictive value (88.4%) were observed. Conclusion. ABPI ≤ 0.89 could be used as the best cut off value to detect PAD. PMID:27034837

  20. Multiplex polymerase chain reaction-capillary gel electrophoresis: a promising tool for GMO screening--assay for simultaneous detection of five genetically modified cotton events and species.

    PubMed

    Nadal, Anna; Esteve, Teresa; Pla, Maria

    2009-01-01

    A multiplex polymerase chain reaction assay coupled to capillary gel electrophoresis for amplicon identification by size and color (multiplex PCR-CGE-SC) was developed for simultaneous detection of cotton species and 5 events of genetically modified (GM) cotton. Validated real-time-PCR reactions targeting Bollgard, Bollgard II, Roundup Ready, 3006-210-23, and 281-24-236 junction sequences, and the cotton reference gene acp1 were adapted to detect more than half of the European Union-approved individual or stacked GM cotton events in one reaction. The assay was fully specific (<1.7% of false classification rate), with limit of detection values of 0.1% for each event, which were also achieved with simulated mixtures at different relative percentages of targets. The assay was further combined with a second multiplex PCR-CGE-SC assay to allow simultaneous detection of 6 cotton and 5 maize targets (two endogenous genes and 9 GM events) in two multiplex PCRs and a single CGE, making the approach more economic. Besides allowing simultaneous detection of many targets with adequate specificity and sensitivity, the multiplex PCR-CGE-SC approach has high throughput and automation capabilities, while keeping a very simple protocol, e.g., amplification and labeling in one step. Thus, it is an easy and inexpensive tool for initial screening, to be complemented with quantitative assays if necessary.

  1. Integrated computational tools for identification of CCR5 antagonists as potential HIV-1 entry inhibitors: homology modeling, virtual screening, molecular dynamics simulations and 3D QSAR analysis.

    PubMed

    Moonsamy, Suri; Dash, Radha Charan; Soliman, Mahmoud E S

    2014-04-23

    Using integrated in-silico computational techniques, including homology modeling, structure-based and pharmacophore-based virtual screening, molecular dynamic simulations, per-residue energy decomposition analysis and atom-based 3D-QSAR analysis, we proposed ten novel compounds as potential CCR5-dependent HIV-1 entry inhibitors. Via validated docking calculations, binding free energies revealed that novel leads demonstrated better binding affinities with CCR5 compared to maraviroc, an FDA-approved HIV-1 entry inhibitor and in clinical use. Per-residue interaction energy decomposition analysis on the averaged MD structure showed that hydrophobic active residues Trp86, Tyr89 and Tyr108 contributed the most to inhibitor binding. The validated 3D-QSAR model showed a high cross-validated rcv2 value of 0.84 using three principal components and non-cross-validated r2 value of 0.941. It was also revealed that almost all compounds in the test set and training set yielded a good predicted value. Information gained from this study could shed light on the activity of a new series of lead compounds as potential HIV entry inhibitors and serve as a powerful tool in the drug design and development machinery.

  2. Multiplex polymerase chain reaction-capillary gel electrophoresis: a promising tool for GMO screening--assay for simultaneous detection of five genetically modified cotton events and species.

    PubMed

    Nadal, Anna; Esteve, Teresa; Pla, Maria

    2009-01-01

    A multiplex polymerase chain reaction assay coupled to capillary gel electrophoresis for amplicon identification by size and color (multiplex PCR-CGE-SC) was developed for simultaneous detection of cotton species and 5 events of genetically modified (GM) cotton. Validated real-time-PCR reactions targeting Bollgard, Bollgard II, Roundup Ready, 3006-210-23, and 281-24-236 junction sequences, and the cotton reference gene acp1 were adapted to detect more than half of the European Union-approved individual or stacked GM cotton events in one reaction. The assay was fully specific (<1.7% of false classification rate), with limit of detection values of 0.1% for each event, which were also achieved with simulated mixtures at different relative percentages of targets. The assay was further combined with a second multiplex PCR-CGE-SC assay to allow simultaneous detection of 6 cotton and 5 maize targets (two endogenous genes and 9 GM events) in two multiplex PCRs and a single CGE, making the approach more economic. Besides allowing simultaneous detection of many targets with adequate specificity and sensitivity, the multiplex PCR-CGE-SC approach has high throughput and automation capabilities, while keeping a very simple protocol, e.g., amplification and labeling in one step. Thus, it is an easy and inexpensive tool for initial screening, to be complemented with quantitative assays if necessary. PMID:19610365

  3. Development of a screening tool to assess the temporal risk of pesticides leaching to groundwater using the source, target, vector approach. An Irish case study for shallow groundwater.

    PubMed

    Labite, Herve E; Cummins, Enda

    2015-03-01

    During this study, a groundwater screening tool was developed to assess the temporal risk of groundwater contamination from the use of pesticides. It is based on a source, vector, target approach. The method utilised in this study uses a semi-quantitative probabilistic risk assessment where the input parameters were classified and assigned a relative score from 1 to 5 (i.e. 1 = no risk and 5 = high risk). The model was parameterised by using national data and calibrated with 2 years of national pesticide groundwater monitoring data. After calibration, two specific sites were selected for model validation. Based on the presence of the source, vector and target, the evaluation indicated that the temporal risk is site specific (i.e. May to December for the country model, June to September for the Oak Park site and September for the Castledockrell site). A sensitivity analysis performed on the national scale revealed that the groundwater vulnerability category (gv), the clay content (cc%), the persistence of pesticides in soil (DT50) and the rainfall represented by wet day (wd) were the most important parameters that affected model predictions (correlation coefficients of 0.54, -0.39, 0.35 and 0.31, respectively), highlighting the importance of soil hydrogeological conditions, soil type and rainfall in influencing water model predictions. The model developed can help to identify the temporal risk from pesticides to groundwater and guide regulators in highlighting at-risk periods, therefore allowing more focused monitoring programmes.

  4. PTMSearchPlus: Software Tool for Automated Protein Identification and Post-Translational and Post-Translational Modification Characterization by Integrating Accurate Intact Protein Mass and Bottom-Up Mass Spectrometric Data Searches

    SciTech Connect

    Kertesz, Vilmos; Connelly, Heather M; Erickson, Brian K; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L

    2009-01-01

    PTMSearchPlus is a software tool for the automated integration of accurate intact protein mass (AIPM) and bottom-up (BU) mass spectra searches/data in order to both confidently identify the intact proteins and to characterize their post-translational modifications (PTMs). The development of PTMSearchPlus was motivated by the desire to effectively integrate high-resolution intact protein molecular masses with bottom-up peptide MS/MS data. PTMSearchPlus requires as input both intact protein and proteolytic peptide mass spectra collected from the same protein mixture, a FASTA protein database, and a selection of possible PTMs, the types and ranges of which can be specified. The output of PTMSearchPlus is a list of intact and modified proteins matching the AIPM data concomitant with their respective peptides found by the BU search. This list also contains protein and peptide sequence coverage information, scores, etc. that can be used for further evaluation or refiltering of the results. Corresponding and annotated AIPM and BU mass spectra are also displayed for visual inspection when a listed protein or a peptide is selected. These and other controls ensure that the user can manually evaluate, modify (e.g., remove obvious false positives, low quality spectra etc.), and save the results of the automated search if necessary. Driven by the exponential growth in the number of possible peptide candidates in a BU search when multiple PTMs are probed, the advantages on search speed by limiting the total number of possible PTMs on a peptide in the BU search or by performing an AIPM predicted BU search are also discussed in addition to the integration approach. The features of PTMSearchPlus are demonstrated using both a protein standard mixture and a complex protein mixture from Escherichia coli. Experimental data revealed a unique advantage of coupling AIPM and the BU data sets that is mutually beneficial for both approaches. Namely, AIPM data can confirm that no PTM peptides

  5. PTMSearchPlus: A Software Tool for Automated Protein Identification and Post-Translational Modification Characterization by Integrating Accurate Intact Protein Mass and Bottom-Up Mass Spectrometric Data Searches

    SciTech Connect

    Kertesz, Vilmos; Connelly, Heather M; Erickson, Brian K; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L

    2009-01-01

    PTMSearchPlus is a software tool for the automated integration of accurate intact protein mass (AIPM) and bottom-up (BU) mass spectra searches/data in order to both confidently identify the intact proteins and to characterize their post-translational modifications (PTMs). The development of PTMSearchPlus was motivated by the desire to effectively integrate high resolution intact protein molecular masses with bottom-up peptide MS/MS data. PTMSearchPlus requires as input both intact protein and proteolytic peptide mass spectra collected from the same protein mixture, a FASTA protein database, and a selection of possible PTMs, the types and ranges of which can be specified. The output of PTMSearchPlus is a list of intact and modified proteins matching the AIPM data concomitant with their respective peptides found by the BU search. This list also contains protein and peptide sequence coverage information, scores, etc. that can be used for further evaluation or refiltering of the results. Corresponding and annotated AIPM and BU mass spectra are also displayed for visual inspection when a listed protein or a peptide is selected. These and other controls ensure that the user can manually evaluate, modify (e.g. remove obvious false positives, low quality spectra etc.), and save the results of the automated search if necessary. Driven by the exponential growth in the number of possible peptide candidates in a BU search when multiple PTMs are probed, the advantages on search speed by limiting the total number of possible PTMs on a peptide in the BU search or by performing an AIPM predicted BU search are also discussed in addition to the integration approach. The features of PTMSearchPlus are demonstrated using both a protein standard mixture and a complex protein mixture from Escherichia coli. Experimental data revealed a unique advantage of coupling AIPM and the BU datasets that is mutually beneficial for both approaches. Namely, AIPM data can confirm that no PTM peptides

  6. Ocular Screening System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1985-01-01

    An ocular screening system designed for safe, convenient screening of large groups was developed at Marshall Space Flight Center, leading to the formation of Medical Sciences Corporation. The system identifies visual defects accurately and inexpensively, and includes a photorefractor telephoto lens and an electronic flash. Medical Sciences Corporation is using the device to test at schools, industrial plants, etc.

  7. Promising toxicological biomarkers for the diagnosis of liver injury types: Bile acid metabolic profiles and oxidative stress marker as screening tools in drug development.

    PubMed

    Masubuchi, Noriko; Nishiya, Takayoshi; Imaoka, Masako; Mizumaki, Kiyoko; Okazaki, Osamu

    2016-08-01

    Promising biomarkers were identified in adult male Crl:CD (SD) rats for the screening of new chemical entities for their potential to cause liver injury. We examined the serum biochemistry, liver histopathology, and bile acid profiles by LC-MS/MS, and the mRNA expression of transporters and CYPs by an RT-PCR after the following treatments to male Crl:CD (SD) rats: (a) bile duct ligation (BDL); (b) a single oral dose of 150 mg/kg α-naphthylisothiocyanate (ANIT); and (c) repeated oral doses of a novel pyrrolidinecarboxylic acid derivative (abbreviated as PCA) at 30, 300, and 1000 mg/kg. The serum total bile acid levels and bilirubin concentrations were found to be elevated in all of the groups. However, the bile acid component profiles of the PCA group differed significantly from BDL and ANIT models: deoxycholic acid, lithocholic acid, and sulfated bile acids were upregulated in a dose-dependent manner only in the PCA group. In addition, the PCA group demonstrated high levels of hepatic heme oxygenase-1 expression, whereas the profiles of the mRNA levels of the hepatic transporters and CYPs of all groups were found to be similar. The histopathological findings, for both the BDL and ANIT groups, were of bile duct hyperplasia, hepatocyte degeneration and necrosis. In contrast, only bile duct hyperplasia and hepatocyte degeneration were observed in the PCA group, even at a lethal dose. These results indicated that PCA induced a cholestatic condition and the increase of oxidative stress markers implies that this will also lead hepatocellular injury. In conclusion, the serum bile acid components and sulfated bile acid levels, and the expression of oxidative stress markers could provide information that aids in the diagnosis of liver injury type and helps to elucidate the mechanisms of hepatotoxicity. These findings can be extrapolated into our clinical investigation. The analysis of these crucial biomarkers is likely to be a useful screening tool in the lead

  8. Development of a screening tool to identify female survivors of gender-based violence in a humanitarian setting: qualitative evidence from research among refugees in Ethiopia

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background High levels of gender-based violence (GBV) persist among conflict-affected populations and within humanitarian settings and are paralleled by under-reporting and low service utilization. Novel and evidence-based approaches are necessary to change the current state of GBV amongst these populations. We present the findings of qualitative research, which were used to inform the development of a screening tool as one potential strategy to identify and respond to GBV for females in humanitarian settings. Methods Qualitative research methods were conducted from January-February 2011 to explore the range of experiences of GBV and barriers to reporting GBV among female refugees. Individual interview participants (n=37) included female refugees (≥15 years), who were survivors of GBV, living in urban or one of three camps settings in Ethiopia, and originating from six conflict countries. Focus group discussion participants (11 groups; 77 participants) included health, protection and community service staff working in the urban or camp settings. Interviews and discussions were conducted in the language of preference, with assistance by interpreters when needed, and transcribed for analysis by grounded-theory technique. Results Single and multiple counts of GBV were reported and ranged from psychological and social violence; rape, gang rape, sexual coercion, and other sexual violence; abduction; and physical violence. Domestic violence was predominantly reported to occur when participants were living in the host country. Opportunistic violence, often manifested by rape, occurred during transit when women depended on others to reach their destination. Abduction within the host country, and often across borders, highlighted the constant state of vulnerability of refugees. Barriers to reporting included perceived and experienced stigma in health settings and in the wider community, lack of awareness of services, and inability to protect children while mothers sought

  9. A Finger-Stick Whole-Blood HIV Self-Test as an HIV Screening Tool Adapted to the General Public

    PubMed Central

    Prazuck, Thierry; Karon, Stephen; Gubavu, Camelia; Andre, Jerome; Legall, Jean Marie; Bouvet, Elisabeth; Kreplak, Georges; Teglas, Jean Paul; Pialoux, Gilles

    2016-01-01

    Background In 2013, the French Health Authority approved the use of HIV self-tests in pharmacies for the general public. This screening tool will allow an increase in the number of screenings and a reduction in the delay between infection and diagnosis, thus reducing the risk of further infections. We previously compared 5 HIV-self test candidates (4 oral fluid and one whole blood) and demonstrated that the whole blood HIV test exhibited the optimal level of performance (sensitivity/specificity). We studied the practicability of an easy-to-use finger-stick whole blood HIV self-test “autotest VIH®”, when used in the general public. Methods and Materials This multicenter cross-sectional study involved 411 participants from the Parisian region (AIDES and HF association) between April and July 2014 and was divided into 2 separate studies: one evaluating the capability of participants to obtain an interpretable result using only the information notice, and a second evaluating the interpretation of test results, using a provided chart. Results A total of 411 consenting participants, 264 in the first study and 147 in the second, were included. All participants were over 18 years of age. In the first study, 99.2% of the 264 participants correctly administered the auto-test, and 21.2% needed, upon their request, telephone assistance. Ninety-two percent of participants responded that the test was easy/very easy to perform, and 93.5% did not find any difficulty obtaining a sufficient good quantity of blood. In the second study, 98.1% of the 147 participants correctly interpreted the results. The reading/interpretation errors concerned the negative (2.1%) or the indeterminate (3.3%) auto-tests. Conclusions The success rate of handling and interpretation of this self-test is very satisfactory, demonstrating its potential for use by the general public and its utility to increase the number of opportunities to detect HIV patients. PMID:26882229

  10. Effects of natural and chemical stressors on Enchytraeus albidus: can oxidative stress parameters be used as fast screening tools for the assessment of different stress impacts in soils?

    PubMed

    Howcroft, C F; Amorim, M J B; Gravato, C; Guilhermino, L; Soares, A M V M

    2009-02-01

    Enchytraeids are important organisms of the soil biocenosis. They improve the soil pore structure and the degradation of organic matter. These organisms are used in standardized testing, using survival and reproduction (6 weeks) as endpoints. The use of biomarkers, linked to ecologically relevant alterations at higher levels of biological organization, is a promising tool for Environmental Risk Assessment. Here, enchytraeids were exposed for different time periods (two days and three weeks) to different soils (OECD artificial soil, different compositions in its organic matter, clay or pH value, and LUFA 2.2 natural soil) and different chemicals (Phenmedipham and copper). The main question addressed in the present study was if the effects of chemicals and different soil properties are preceded by alterations at the sub-cellular level, and if these endpoints may be used reliantly as faster screening tools for the assessment of different stress conditions in soils. The parameters measured in E. albidus whole body were: lipid peroxidation (LPO), total glutathione (TG), as well as the enzymatic activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione reductase (GR), glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and glutathione S-transferase (GST). The results showed that biomarker responses in E. albidus were significantly affected by the soil type (GST, CAT, GPx, GR and LPO) and the duration of exposure in OECD artificial soil (GST, GPx, GR, CAT and LPO) but not in LUFA 2.2 natural soil. For the abiotic factors studied, after 2 days, low pH decreased significantly the TG levels and the activities of CAT and GR,and low OM also significantly decreased CAT and GR activities. After 3 weeks, differences in soil properties caused a decrease in GR and GPx activities, whereas increased GST activity was observed due to low organic matter and pH. Copper significantly increased the activities of CAT, GPx and GR, and decreased the activity of GST after 2 days as well as inscreasing

  11. A Protocolised Once a Day Modified Early Warning Score (MEWS) Measurement Is an Appropriate Screening Tool for Major Adverse Events in a General Hospital Population

    PubMed Central

    Ludikhuize, Jeroen; Kramer, Mark H. H.

    2016-01-01

    Background The Modified Early Warning Score (MEWS) was developed to timely recognise clinically deteriorating hospitalised patients. However, the ability of the MEWS in predicting serious adverse events (SAEs) in a general hospital population has not been examined prospectively. The aims were to (1) analyse protocol adherence to a MEWS protocol in a real-life setting and (2) to determine the predictive value of protocolised daily MEWS measurement on SAEs: death, cardiac arrests, ICU-admissions and readmissions. Methods All adult patients admitted to 6 hospital wards in October and November 2015 were included. MEWS were checked each morning by the research team. For each critical score (MEWS ≥ 3), the clinical staff was inquired about the actions performed. 30-day follow-up for SAEs was performed to compare between patients with and without a critical score. Results 1053 patients with 3673 vital parameter measurements were included, 200 (19.0%) had a critical score. The protocol adherence was 89.0%. 18.2% of MEWS were calculated wrongly. Patients with critical scores had significant higher rates of unplanned ICU admissions [7.0% vs 1.3%, p < 0.001], in-hospital mortality [6.0% vs 0.8%, p < 0.001], 30-day readmission rates [18.6% vs 10.8%, p < 0.05], and a longer length of stay [15.65 (SD: 15.7 days) vs 6.09 (SD: 6.9), p < 0.001]. Specificity of MEWS related to composite adverse events was 83% with a negative predicting value of 98.1%. Conclusions Protocol adherence was high, even though one-third of the critical scores were calculated wrongly. Patients with a MEWS ≥ 3 experienced significantly more adverse events. The negative predictive value of early morning MEWS < 3 was 98.1%, indicating the reliability of this score as a screening tool. PMID:27494719

  12. Assessment of Anti-TNF-α Activities in Keratinocytes Expressing Inducible TNF- α: A Novel Tool for Anti-TNF-α Drug Screening

    PubMed Central

    Udommethaporn, Sutthirat; Tencomnao, Tewin; McGowan, Eileen M.

    2016-01-01

    Tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) is a pro-inflammatory cytokine important in normal and pathological biological processes. Newly synthesized pro-TNF-α is expressed on the plasma membrane and cleaved to release soluble TNF-α protein: both are biologically active. Secreted TNF-α signals through TNF receptors and the membrane-bound TNF-α acts by cell contact-dependent signaling. Anti-TNF-α antibodies have been used effectively for treatment of chronic inflammation, however with adverse side effects. Thus, there is a need for new anti-TNF-α small molecule compounds. Anti-TNF-α activity assays involve treatment of keratinocytes with exogenous TNF-α before or after anti-TNF-α incubation. However, this model fails to address the dual signaling of TNF-α. Here we describe a Doxycycline (Dox)-inducible TNF-α (HaCaT-TNF-α) expression system in keratinocytes. Using this in-vitro model, we show cell inhibition and induced expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and markers, including IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, NF-κB1, and KRT-16, similar to cells treated with exogenous TNF-α. Sufficient secreted TNF-α produced also activated IL-1β and IL-8 expression in wt HaCaT cells. Importantly, stimulated expression of IL-1β and IL-8 in HaCaT-TNF-α were blocked by Quercetin, a flavanol shown to possess anti-TNF-α activities. This novel in vitro cell model provides an efficient tool to investigate the dual signaling of TNF-α. Importantly, this model provides an effective, fast, and simple screening for compounds with anti-TNF-α activities for chronic inflammatory disease therapies. PMID:27415000

  13. Developing New Tools for the in vivo Generation/Screening of Cyclic Peptide Libraries. A New Combinatorial Approach for the Detection of Bacterial Toxin Inhibitors

    SciTech Connect

    Camarero, J A

    2006-11-28

    A new combinatorial approach for the biosynthesis and screening of small drug-like toxin inhibitors inside living cells is presented. This approach has been initially used as proof of principle for finding inhibitors against the LF factor from Bacillus anthracis. Key to our ''living combinatorial'' approach is the use of a living cell as a micro-chemical factory for both synthesis and screening of potential inhibitors for a given molecular recognition event (see Scheme 1). This powerful technique posses the advantage that both processes synthesis and screening happen inside the cell thus accelerating the whole screening/selection process.

  14. Effect of transient liquid flow on retention characteristics of screen acquisition systems. [design of Space Shuttle feed system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cady, E. C.

    1977-01-01

    A design analysis, is developed based on experimental data, to predict the effects of transient flow and pressure surges (caused either by valve or pump operation, or by boiling of liquids in warm lines) on the retention performance of screen acquisition systems. A survey of screen liquid acquisition system applications was performed to determine appropriate system environment and classification. A screen model was developed which assumed that the screen device was a uniformly distributed composite orthotropic structure, and which accounted for liquid inflow/outflow, gas ingestion quality, screen stress, and liquid spill. A series of 177 tests using 13 specimens (5 screen meshes, 4 screen device construction/backup methods, and 2 orientations) with three test fluids (isopropyl alcohol, Freon 114, and LH2) provided data which verified important features of the screen model and resulted in a design tool which could accurately predict the transient startup performance acquisition devices.

  15. Screening for Depression

    MedlinePlus

    ... events Visit the podcast archive Mood Disorders Depression Bipolar Disorder Anxiety Screening Center Co-occurring Illnesses/Disorders Related ... for Your Patients Information about Depression Information about Bipolar Disorder Wellness Tools DBSA Support Groups Active Research Studies ...

  16. A pilot study: portable out-of-center sleep testing as an early sleep apnea screening tool in acute ischemic stroke

    PubMed Central

    Chernyshev, Oleg Y; McCarty, David E; Moul, Douglas E; Liendo, Cesar; Caldito, Gloria C; Munjampalli, Sai K; Kelley, Roger E; Chesson, Andrew L

    2015-01-01

    patients. OCST is a reliable screening tool for early diagnosis of OSA in AIS patients. PMID:26527904

  17. A spatio-temporal screening tool for outlier detection in long term / large scale air quality observation time series and monitoring networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kracht, Oliver; Reuter, Hannes I.; Gerboles, Michel

    2013-04-01

    We present a consolidated screening tool for the detection of outliers in air quality monitoring data, which considers both attribute values and spatio-temporal relationships. Furthermore, an application example of warnings on abnormal values in time series of PM10 datasets in AirBase is presented. Spatial or temporal outliers in air quality datasets represent stations or individual measurements which differ significantly from other recordings within their spatio-temporal neighbourhood. Such abnormal values can be identified as being extreme compared to their neighbours, even though they do not necessarily require to differ significantly from the statistical distribution of the entire population. The identification of such outliers can be of interest as the basis of data quality control systems when several contributors report their measurements to the collection of larger datasets. Beyond this, it can also provide a simple solution to investigate the accuracy of station classifications. Seen from another viewpoint, it can be used as a tool to detect irregular air pollution emission events (e.g. the influence of fires, wind erosion events, or other accidental situations). The presented procedure for outlier detection was designed based on already existing literature. Specifically, we adapted the "Smooth Spatial Attribute Method" that was first developed for the identification of outlier values in networks of traffic sensors [1]. Since a free and extensible simulation platform was considered important, all codes were prototyped in the R environment which is available under the GNU General Public License [2]. Our algorithms are based on the definition of a neighbourhood for each air quality measurement, corresponding to a spatio-temporal domain limited by time (e.g., +/- 2 days) and distance (e.g., +/- 1 spherical degrees) around the location of ambient air monitoring stations. The objective of the method is that within such a given spatio-temporal domain, in which

  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. Priority screening of toxic chemicals and industry sectors in the U.S. toxics release inventory: a comparison of the life cycle impact-based and risk-based assessment tools developed by U.S. EPA.

    PubMed

    Lim, Seong-Rin; Lam, Carl W; Schoenung, Julie M

    2011-09-01

    Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA) and Risk Assessment (RA) employ different approaches to evaluate toxic impact potential for their own general applications. LCIA is often used to evaluate toxicity potentials for corporate environmental management and RA is often used to evaluate a risk score for environmental policy in government. This study evaluates the cancer, non-cancer, and ecotoxicity potentials and risk scores of chemicals and industry sectors in the United States on the basis of the LCIA- and RA-based tools developed by U.S. EPA, and compares the priority screening of toxic chemicals and industry sectors identified with each method to examine whether the LCIA- and RA-based results lead to the same prioritization schemes. The Tool for the Reduction and Assessment of Chemical and other environmental Impacts (TRACI) is applied as an LCIA-based screening approach with a focus on air and water emissions, and the Risk-Screening Environmental Indicator (RSEI) is applied in equivalent fashion as an RA-based screening approach. The U.S. Toxic Release Inventory is used as the dataset for this analysis, because of its general applicability to a comprehensive list of chemical substances and industry sectors. Overall, the TRACI and RSEI results do not agree with each other in part due to the unavailability of characterization factors and toxic scores for select substances, but primarily because of their different evaluation approaches. Therefore, TRACI and RSEI should be used together both to support a more comprehensive and robust approach to screening of chemicals for environmental management and policy and to highlight substances that are found to be of concern from both perspectives.

  1. Turbulent flow through screens

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehta, R. D.

    1984-01-01

    A detailed experimental investigation has been carried out on the effects of different types of screens on turbulent flow, in particular turbulent boundary layers. The effect of a screen on a turbulent boundary layer is to give it a 'new lease of life'. The boundary layer turbulence is reorganized and the thickness reduced, thus making it less susceptible to separation. The aerodynamic properties of plastic screens are found to differ significantly from those of the conventional metal screens, evidently because of differences in the weaving properties. The 'overshoot' in mean velocity profile near the boudnary layer edge is shown to be a result of the effect of screen inclination on pressure drop coefficient. A more accurate formulation for the deflection coefficient of a screen is also proposed.

  2. Screening for lung cancer using low dose computed tomography.

    PubMed

    Tammemagi, Martin C; Lam, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Screening for lung cancer with low dose computed tomography can reduce mortality from the disease by 20% in high risk smokers. This review covers the state of the art knowledge on several aspects of implementing a screening program. The most important are to identify people who are at high enough risk to warrant screening and the appropriate management of lung nodules found at screening. An accurate risk prediction model is more efficient than age and pack years of smoking alone at identifying those who will develop lung cancer and die from the disease. Algorithms are available for assessing people who screen positive to determine who needs additional imaging or invasive investigations. Concerns about low dose computed tomography screening include false positive results, overdiagnosis, radiation exposure, and costs. Further work is needed to define the frequency and duration of screening and to refine risk prediction models so that they can be used to assess the risk of lung cancer in special populations. Another important area is the use of computer vision software tools to facilitate high throughput interpretation of low dose computed tomography images so that costs can be reduced and the consistency of scan interpretation can be improved. Sufficient data are available to support the implementation of screening programs at the population level in stages that can be expanded when found to perform well to improve the outcome of patients with lung cancer. PMID:24865600

  3. Can Appraisers Rate Work Performance Accurately?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hedge, Jerry W.; Laue, Frances J.

    The ability of individuals to make accurate judgments about others is examined and literature on this subject is reviewed. A wide variety of situational factors affects the appraisal of performance. It is generally accepted that the purpose of the appraisal influences the accuracy of the appraiser. The instrumentation, or tools, available to the…

  4. Newborn Screening for Fragile X Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bailey, Donald B., Jr.

    2004-01-01

    Newborn screening for fragile X syndrome (FXS) is technically possible, and in the relatively near future accurate and inexpensive screening technologies are likely to be available. When that happens, will America's public health system adopt newborn screening for fragile X syndrome? This article addresses this issue by first placing screening for…

  5. 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.

  6. Utility of the "Social Communication Questionnaire-Current" and "Social Responsiveness Scale" as Teacher-Report Screening Tools for Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schanding, G. Thomas, Jr.; Nowell, Kerri P.; Goin-Kochel, Robin P.

    2012-01-01

    Limited research exists regarding the role of teachers in screening for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). The current study examined the use of the "Social Communication Questionnaire" (SCQ) and "Social Responsiveness Scale" (SRS) as completed by parents and teachers about school-age children from the Simons Simplex Collection. Using the…

  7. Computational Toxicology as Implemented by the U.S. EPA: Providing High Throughput Decision Support Tools for Screening and Assessing Chemical Exposure, Hazard and Risk

    EPA Science Inventory

    Computational toxicology is the application of mathematical and computer models to help assess chemical hazards and risks to human health and the environment. Supported by advances in informatics, high-throughput screening (HTS) technologies, and systems biology, the U.S. Environ...

  8. Development of the Nutrition and Swallowing Checklist, a Screening Tool for Nutrition Risk and Swallowing Risk in People with Intellectual Disability.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, Lyn

    2003-01-01

    This article discusses nutrition problems in people with intellectual disabilities, the need for nutrition risk screening, and the development of the Nutrition and Swallowing Checklist in New South Wales. The checklist ensures carer involvement in identifying risks and an interdisciplinary approach to the assessment and management of nutrition and…

  9. Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Katrina Inspired Disaster Screenings (KIDS): Psychometric Testing of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network Hurricane Assessment and Referral Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hansel, Tonya Cross; Osofsky, Joy D.; Osofsky, Howard J.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Post disaster psychosocial surveillance procedures are important for guiding effective and efficient recovery. The Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Katrina Inspired Disaster Screenings (KIDS) is a model designed with the goal of assisting recovering communities in understanding the needs of and targeting services…

  10. Score Reliability and Validity of the Student Risk Screening Scale: A Psychometrically Sound, Feasible Tool for Use in Urban Elementary Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ennis, Robin Parks; Lane, Kathleen Lynne; Oakes, Wendy Peia

    2012-01-01

    In this article we examine the psychometric properties of the "Student Risk Screening Scale" (SRSS) for use in diverse, urban elementary schools. Results of two studies suggest strong internal consistency and test-retest reliability. Both studies also suggest strong convergent validity with other psychometrically sound, systematic screeners…

  11. DG-AMMOS: A New tool to generate 3D conformation of small molecules using Distance Geometry and Automated Molecular Mechanics Optimization for in silico Screening

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Discovery of new bioactive molecules that could enter drug discovery programs or that could serve as chemical probes is a very complex and costly endeavor. Structure-based and ligand-based in silico screening approaches are nowadays extensively used to complement experimental screening approaches in order to increase the effectiveness of the process and facilitating the screening of thousands or millions of small molecules against a biomolecular target. Both in silico screening methods require as input a suitable chemical compound collection and most often the 3D structure of the small molecules has to be generated since compounds are usually delivered in 1D SMILES, CANSMILES or in 2D SDF formats. Results Here, we describe the new open source program DG-AMMOS which allows the generation of the 3D conformation of small molecules using Distance Geometry and their energy minimization via Automated Molecular Mechanics Optimization. The program is validated on the Astex dataset, the ChemBridge Diversity database and on a number of small molecules with known crystal structures extracted from the Cambridge Structural Database. A comparison with the free program Balloon and the well-known commercial program Omega generating the 3D of small molecules is carried out. The results show that the new free program DG-AMMOS is a very efficient 3D structure generator engine. Conclusion DG-AMMOS provides fast, automated and reliable access to the generation of 3D conformation of small molecules and facilitates the preparation of a compound collection prior to high-throughput virtual screening computations. The validation of DG-AMMOS on several different datasets proves that generated structures are generally of equal quality or sometimes better than structures obtained by other tested methods. PMID:19912625

  12. Issues Management Tool

    2010-12-31

    IMTool performs the following: • The IMTool can manage issues, actions, and activities from one screen. • Provides enhanced and intuitive searching, sorting, and filtering capabilities. Grids allow for filtering any column instantly by any data heading. • IMTool uses drop-down menus to ensure date is entered accurately with consistency. • User-friendly system – highly utilized commitment tracking screen functions. Information is viewed on the left side of the screen and managed on the right.

  13. The identification of complete domains within protein sequences using accurate E-values for semi-global alignment

    PubMed Central

    Kann, Maricel G.; Sheetlin, Sergey L.; Park, Yonil; Bryant, Stephen H.; Spouge, John L.

    2007-01-01

    The sequencing of complete genomes has created a pressing need for automated annotation of gene function. Because domains are the basic units of protein function and evolution, a gene can be annotated from a domain database by aligning domains to the corresponding protein sequence. Ideally, complete domains are aligned to protein subsequences, in a ‘semi-global alignment’. Local alignment, which aligns pieces of domains to subsequences, is common in high-throughput annotation applications, however. It is a mature technique, with the heuristics and accurate E-values required for screening large databases and evaluating the screening results. Hidden Markov models (HMMs) provide an alternative theoretical framework for semi-global alignment, but their use is limited because they lack heuristic acceleration and accurate E-values. Our new tool, GLOBAL, overcomes some limitations of previous semi-global HMMs: it has accurate E-values and the possibility of the heuristic acceleration required for high-throughput applications. Moreover, according to a standard of truth based on protein structure, two semi-global HMM alignment tools (GLOBAL and HMMer) had comparable performance in identifying complete domains, but distinctly outperformed two tools based on local alignment. When searching for complete protein domains, therefore, GLOBAL avoids disadvantages commonly associated with HMMs, yet maintains their superior retrieval performance. PMID:17596268

  14. Utility of the social communication questionnaire-current and social responsiveness scale as teacher-report screening tools for autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Schanding, G Thomas; Nowell, Kerri P; Goin-Kochel, Robin P

    2012-08-01

    Limited research exists regarding the role of teachers in screening for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). The current study examined the use of the Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ) and Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS) as completed by parents and teachers about school-age children from the Simons Simplex Collection. Using the recommended cutoff scores in the manuals and extant literature, the teacher-completed SCQ and SRS yielded lower sensitivity and specificity values than would be desirable; however, lowering the cutoff scores on both instruments improved sensitivity and specificity to more adequate levels for screening purposes. Using the adjusted cutoff scores, the SRS teacher form appears to be a slightly better screener than the SCQ. Implications and limitations are discussed, as well as areas for future research. PMID:22143742

  15. Rationale and study protocol for a multi-component Health Information Technology (HIT) screening tool for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder in the primary care setting.

    PubMed

    Biegler, Kelly; Mollica, Richard; Sim, Susan Elliott; Nicholas, Elisa; Chandler, Maria; Ngo-Metzger, Quyen; Paigne, Kittya; Paigne, Sompia; Nguyen, Danh V; Sorkin, Dara H

    2016-09-01

    The prevalence rate of depression in primary care is high. Primary care providers serve as the initial point of contact for the majority of patients with depression, yet, approximately 50% of cases remain unrecognized. The under-diagnosis of depression may be further exacerbated in limited English-language proficient (LEP) populations. Language barriers may result in less discussion of patients' mental health needs and fewer referrals to mental health services, particularly given competing priorities of other medical conditions and providers' time pressures. Recent advances in Health Information Technology (HIT) may facilitate novel ways to screen for depression and other mental health disorders in LEP populations. The purpose of this paper is to describe the rationale and protocol of a clustered randomized controlled trial that will test the effectiveness of an HIT intervention that provides a multi-component approach to delivering culturally competent, mental health care in the primary care setting. The HIT intervention has four components: 1) web-based provider training, 2) multimedia electronic screening of depression and PTSD in the patients' primary language, 3) Computer generated risk assessment scores delivered directly to the provider, and 4) clinical decision support. The outcomes of the study include assessing the potential of the HIT intervention to improve screening rates, clinical detection, provider initiation of treatment, and patient outcomes for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among LEP Cambodian refugees who experienced war atrocities and trauma during the Khmer Rouge. This technology has the potential to be adapted to any LEP population in order to facilitate mental health screening and treatment in the primary care setting. PMID:27394385

  16. MetaboQuant: a tool combining individual peak calibration and outlier detection for accurate metabolite quantification in 1D (1)H and (1)H-(13)C HSQC NMR spectra.

    PubMed

    Klein, Matthias S; Oefner, Peter J; Gronwald, Wolfram

    2013-05-01

    Solution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is widely used to analyze complex mixtures of organic compounds such as biological fluids and tissue extracts. Targeted profiling approaches with reliable compound quantitifcation are hampered, however, by signal overlap and other interferences. Here, we present a tool named MetaboQuant for automated compound quantification from pre-processed 1D and 2D heteronuclear single quantum coherence (HSQC) NMR spectral data and concomitant validation of results. Performance of MetaboQuant was tested on a urinary spike-in data set and compared with other quantification strategies. The use of individual calibration factors in combination with the validation algorithms of MetaboQuant raises the reliability of the quantification results. MetaboQuant can be downloaded at http://genomics.uni-regensburg.de/site/institute/software/metaboquant/ as stand-alone software for Windows or run on other operating systems from within Matlab. Separate software for peak fitting and integration is necessary in order to use MetaboQuant. PMID:23662895

  17. Accurate Optical Reference Catalogs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zacharias, N.

    2006-08-01

    Current and near future all-sky astrometric catalogs on the ICRF are reviewed with the emphasis on reference star data at optical wavelengths for user applications. The standard error of a Hipparcos Catalogue star position is now about 15 mas per coordinate. For the Tycho-2 data it is typically 20 to 100 mas, depending on magnitude. The USNO CCD Astrograph Catalog (UCAC) observing program was completed in 2004 and reductions toward the final UCAC3 release are in progress. This all-sky reference catalogue will have positional errors of 15 to 70 mas for stars in the 10 to 16 mag range, with a high degree of completeness. Proper motions for the about 60 million UCAC stars will be derived by combining UCAC astrometry with available early epoch data, including yet unpublished scans of the complete set of AGK2, Hamburg Zone astrograph and USNO Black Birch programs. Accurate positional and proper motion data are combined in the Naval Observatory Merged Astrometric Dataset (NOMAD) which includes Hipparcos, Tycho-2, UCAC2, USNO-B1, NPM+SPM plate scan data for astrometry, and is supplemented by multi-band optical photometry as well as 2MASS near infrared photometry. The Milli-Arcsecond Pathfinder Survey (MAPS) mission is currently being planned at USNO. This is a micro-satellite to obtain 1 mas positions, parallaxes, and 1 mas/yr proper motions for all bright stars down to about 15th magnitude. This program will be supplemented by a ground-based program to reach 18th magnitude on the 5 mas level.

  18. Efficacy of the alcohol use disorders identification test as a screening tool for hazardous alcohol intake and related disorders in primary care: a validity study.

    PubMed Central

    Piccinelli, M.; Tessari, E.; Bortolomasi, M.; Piasere, O.; Semenzin, M.; Garzotto, N.; Tansella, M.

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine the properties of the alcohol use disorders identification test in screening primary care attenders for alcohol problems. DESIGN: A validity study among consecutive primary care attenders aged 18-65 years. Every third subject completed the alcohol use disorders identification test (a 10 item self report questionnaire on alcohol intake and related problems) and was interviewed by an investigator with the composite international diagnostic interview alcohol use module (a standardised interview for the independent assessment of alcohol intake and related disorders). SETTING: 10 primary care clinics in Verona, north eastern Italy. PATIENTS: 500 subjects were approached and 482 (96.4%) completed evaluation. RESULTS: When the alcohol use disorders identification test was used to detect subjects with alcohol problems the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.95. The cut off score of 5 was associated with a sensitivity of 0.84, a specificity of 0.90, and a positive predictive value of 0.60. The screening ability of the total score derived from summing the responses to the five items minimising the probability of misclassification between subjects with and without alcohol problems provided an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.93. A score of 5 or more on the five items was associated with a sensitivity of 0.79, a specificity of 0.95, and a positive predictive value of 0.73. CONCLUSIONS: The alcohol use disorders identification test performs well in detecting subjects with formal alcohol disorders and those with hazardous alcohol intake. Using five of the 10 items on the questionnaire gives reasonable accuracy, and these are recommended as questions of choice to screen patients for alcohol problems. PMID:9040389

  19. Single Chain Antibodies as Tools to Study transforming growth factor-β-Regulated SMAD Proteins in Proximity Ligation-Based Pharmacological Screens.

    PubMed

    Blokzijl, Andries; Zieba, Agata; Hust, Michael; Schirrmann, Thomas; Helmsing, Saskia; Grannas, Karin; Hertz, Ellen; Moren, Anita; Chen, Lei; Söderberg, Ola; Moustakas, Aristidis; Dübel, Stefan; Landegren, Ulf

    2016-06-01

    The cellular heterogeneity seen in tumors, with subpopulations of cells capable of resisting different treatments, renders single-treatment regimens generally ineffective. Accordingly, there is a great need to increase the repertoire of drug treatments from which combinations may be selected to efficiently target sets of pathological processes, while suppressing the emergence of resistance mutations. In this regard, members of the TGF-β signaling pathway may furnish new, valuable therapeutic targets. In the present work, we developed in situ proximity ligation assays (isPLA) to monitor the state of the TGF-β signaling pathway. Moreover, we extended the range of suitable affinity reagents for this analysis by developing a set of in-vitro-derived human antibody fragments (single chain fragment variable, scFv) that bind SMAD2 (Mothers against decapentaplegic 2), 3, 4, and 7 using phage display. These four proteins are all intracellular mediators of TGF-β signaling. We also developed an scFv specific for SMAD3 phosphorylated in the linker domain 3 (p179 SMAD3). This phosphorylation has been shown to inactivate the tumor suppressor function of SMAD3. The single chain affinity reagents developed in the study were fused tocrystallizable antibody fragments (Fc-portions) and expressed as dimeric IgG-like molecules having Fc domains (Yumabs), and we show that they represent valuable reagents for isPLA.Using these novel assays, we demonstrate that p179 SMAD3 forms a complex with SMAD4 at increased frequency during division and that pharmacological inhibition of cyclin-dependent kinase 4 (CDK4)(1) reduces the levels of p179SMAD3 in tumor cells. We further show that the p179SMAD3-SMAD4 complex is bound for degradation by the proteasome. Finally, we developed a chemical screening strategy for compounds that reduce the levels of p179SMAD3 in tumor cells with isPLA as a read-out, using the p179SMAD3 scFv SH544-IIC4. The screen identified two kinase inhibitors, known inhibitors

  20. Combining U.S.-based prioritization tools to improve screening level accountability for environmental impact: the case of the chemical manufacturing industry.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xiaoying; Schoenung, Julie M

    2009-12-15

    There are two quantitative indicators that are most widely used to assess the extent of compliance of industrial facilities with environmental regulations: the quantity of hazardous waste generated and the amount of toxics released. These indicators, albeit useful in terms of some environmental monitoring, fail to account for direct or indirect effects on human and environmental health, especially when aggregating total quantity of releases for a facility or industry sector. Thus, there is a need for a more comprehensive approach that can prioritize a particular chemical (or industry sector) on the basis of its relevant environmental performance and impact on human health. Accordingly, the objective of the present study is to formulate an aggregation of tools that can simultaneously capture multiple effects and several environmental impact categories. This approach allows us to compare and combine results generated with the aid of select U.S.-based quantitative impact assessment tools, thereby supplementing compliance-based metrics such as data from the U.S. Toxic Release Inventory. A case study, which presents findings for the U.S. chemical manufacturing industry, is presented to illustrate the aggregation of these tools. Environmental impacts due to both upstream and manufacturing activities are also evaluated for each industry sector. The proposed combinatorial analysis allows for a more robust evaluation for rating and prioritizing the environmental impacts of industrial waste.

  1. Convergent Validation of the Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills (KELS) as a Screening Tool of Older Adults’ Capacity to Live Safely and Independently in the Community

    PubMed Central

    Burnett, Jason; Dyer, Carmel B.; Naik, Aanand D.

    2010-01-01

    Objective Convergent validation of the Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills (KELS) to screen older adults’ capacity for safe and independent living. Design Cross-sectional study correlating KELS with components of a Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment. Setting Participants’ homes Participants 200 community-dwelling older adults aged ≥65 including 100 referred by adult protective services (APS) and 100 ambulatory patients matched on age, race, gender, and socio-economic status. Interventions In-home comprehensive assessment Main Outcome Measures Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills (KELS), Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS), Physical Performance Test (mPPT), Mini-mental state examination (MMSE), Knee Extensor Break Test, Executive test (EXIT25), CLOX 1 & 2, and an 8-foot walk test. Results Older adults with abnormal KELS scores performed significantly worse on all tests except for the Knee Extensor Break Test. Accordingly, among the entire group, the KELS correlated with measures of executive function (EXIT25, r = .705, p <.001; CLOX 1, r = −.629 p<.001), cognitive function (MMSE, r=−.508, p<.001), affect (GDS, r= .318, p<.001) and physical function (mPPT, r= −.472, p<.001) but did not correlate with the Knee Extensor Break Test (r = −.068, p = .456). Among those referred by APS the KELS failed to correlate with only the 8-foot walk test (r = .175, p = .153) and GDS (r = .080, p = .450). Conclusions This study demonstrated the convergent validity of KELS with a battery of cognitive, affective, executive, and functional measures often used to determine older adults’ ability to live safely and independently in the community. KELS may be a valid and pragmatic alternative to screen for the capacity to live safely and independently among older adults. PMID:19887222

  2. Screening for adverse events.

    PubMed

    Karson, A S; Bates, D W

    1999-02-01

    Adverse events (AEs) in medical patients are common, costly, and often preventable. Development of quality improvement programs to decrease the number and impact of AEs demands effective methods for screening for AEs on a routine basis. Here we describe the impact, types, and potential causes of AEs and review various techniques for identifying AEs. We evaluate the use of generic screening criteria in detail and describe a recent study of the sensitivity and specificity of individual generic screening criteria and combinations of these criteria. In general, the most sensitive screens were the least specific and no small sub-set of screens identified a large percentage of adverse events. Combinations of screens that were limited to administrative data were the least expensive, but none were particularly sensitive, although in practice they might be effective since routine screening is currently rarely done. As computer systems increase in sophistication sensitivity will improve. We also discuss recent studies that suggest that programs that screen for and identify AEs can be useful in reducing AE rates. While tools for identifying AEs have strengths and weaknesses, they can play an important role in organizations' quality improvement portfolios. PMID:10468381

  3. The Macaque Social Responsiveness Scale (mSRS): A Rapid Screening Tool for Assessing Variability in the Social Responsiveness of Rhesus Monkeys (Macaca mulatta).

    PubMed

    Feczko, Eric J; Bliss-Moreau, Eliza; Walum, Hasse; Pruett, John R; Parr, Lisa A

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the biological mechanisms underlying human neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), has been hindered by the lack of a robust, translational animal model. Rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) display many of the same social behaviors that are affected in ASD, making them an excellent animal species in which to model social impairments. However, the social impairments associated with ASD may reflect extreme ends of a continuous distribution of traits. Thus, to validate the rhesus monkey as an animal model for studying social impairments that has strong translational relevance for ASD, researchers need an easily-implemented measurement tool that can quantify variation in social behavior dimensionally. The Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS) is a 65-item survey that identifies both typical and atypical social behaviors in humans that covary with ASD symptom severity. A chimpanzee SRS has already been validated and the current study adapted this tool for use in the rhesus monkey (mSRS). Fifteen raters completed the mSRS for 105 rhesus monkeys living at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center. The mSRS scores showed a unimodal distribution with a positive skew that identified 6 statistical outliers. Inter-rater reliability was very strong, but only 17 of the 36 questions showed positive intra-item reliability. The results of an exploratory factor analysis identified 3 factors that explained over 60% of the variance, with 12 items significantly loading onto the primary factor. These items reflected behaviors associated with social avoidance, social anxiety or inflexibility and social confidence. These initial findings are encouraging and suggest that variability in the social responsiveness of rhesus monkeys can be quantified using the mSRS: a tool that has strong translational relevance for human disorders. With further modification, the mSRS may provide an promising new direction for research on the biological mechanisms underlying

  4. The Macaque Social Responsiveness Scale (mSRS): A Rapid Screening Tool for Assessing Variability in the Social Responsiveness of Rhesus Monkeys (Macaca mulatta).

    PubMed

    Feczko, Eric J; Bliss-Moreau, Eliza; Walum, Hasse; Pruett, John R; Parr, Lisa A

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the biological mechanisms underlying human neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), has been hindered by the lack of a robust, translational animal model. Rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) display many of the same social behaviors that are affected in ASD, making them an excellent animal species in which to model social impairments. However, the social impairments associated with ASD may reflect extreme ends of a continuous distribution of traits. Thus, to validate the rhesus monkey as an animal model for studying social impairments that has strong translational relevance for ASD, researchers need an easily-implemented measurement tool that can quantify variation in social behavior dimensionally. The Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS) is a 65-item survey that identifies both typical and atypical social behaviors in humans that covary with ASD symptom severity. A chimpanzee SRS has already been validated and the current study adapted this tool for use in the rhesus monkey (mSRS). Fifteen raters completed the mSRS for 105 rhesus monkeys living at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center. The mSRS scores showed a unimodal distribution with a positive skew that identified 6 statistical outliers. Inter-rater reliability was very strong, but only 17 of the 36 questions showed positive intra-item reliability. The results of an exploratory factor analysis identified 3 factors that explained over 60% of the variance, with 12 items significantly loading onto the primary factor. These items reflected behaviors associated with social avoidance, social anxiety or inflexibility and social confidence. These initial findings are encouraging and suggest that variability in the social responsiveness of rhesus monkeys can be quantified using the mSRS: a tool that has strong translational relevance for human disorders. With further modification, the mSRS may provide an promising new direction for research on the biological mechanisms underlying

  5. eVerdEE: a web-based screening life-cycle assessment tool for European small and medium-sized enterprises

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naldesi, Luciano; Buttol, Patrizia; Masoni, Paolo; Misceo, Monica; Sára, Balázs

    2004-12-01

    "eLCA" is a European Commission financed project aimed at realising "On line green tools and services for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs)". Knowledge and use of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) by SMEs are strategic to introduce the Integrated Product Policy (IPP) in Europe, but methodology simplification is needed. LCA requires a large amount of validated general and sector specific data. Since their availability and cost can be insuperable barriers for SMEs, pre-elaborated data/meta-data, use of standards and low cost solutions are required. Within the framework of the eLCA project an LCA software - eVerdEE - based on a simplified methodology and specialised for SMEs has been developed. eVerdEE is a web-based tool with some innovative features. Its main feature is the adaptation of ISO 14040 requirements to offer easy-to-handle functions with solid scientific bases. Complex methodological problems, such as the system boundaries definition, the data quality estimation and documentation, the choice of impact categories, are simplified according to the SMEs" needs. Predefined "Goal and Scope definition" and "Inventory" forms, a user-friendly and well structured procedure are time and cost-effective. The tool is supported by a database containing pre-elaborated environmental indicators of substances and processes for different impact categories. The impact assessment is calculated automatically by using the user"s input and the database values. The results have different levels of interpretation in order to identify the life cycle critical points and the improvement options. The use of a target plot allows the direct comparison of different design alternatives.

  6. The Macaque Social Responsiveness Scale (mSRS): A Rapid Screening Tool for Assessing Variability in the Social Responsiveness of Rhesus Monkeys (Macaca mulatta)

    PubMed Central

    Bliss-Moreau, Eliza; Walum, Hasse; Pruett, John R.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the biological mechanisms underlying human neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), has been hindered by the lack of a robust, translational animal model. Rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) display many of the same social behaviors that are affected in ASD, making them an excellent animal species in which to model social impairments. However, the social impairments associated with ASD may reflect extreme ends of a continuous distribution of traits. Thus, to validate the rhesus monkey as an animal model for studying social impairments that has strong translational relevance for ASD, researchers need an easily-implemented measurement tool that can quantify variation in social behavior dimensionally. The Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS) is a 65-item survey that identifies both typical and atypical social behaviors in humans that covary with ASD symptom severity. A chimpanzee SRS has already been validated and the current study adapted this tool for use in the rhesus monkey (mSRS). Fifteen raters completed the mSRS for 105 rhesus monkeys living at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center. The mSRS scores showed a unimodal distribution with a positive skew that identified 6 statistical outliers. Inter-rater reliability was very strong, but only 17 of the 36 questions showed positive intra-item reliability. The results of an exploratory factor analysis identified 3 factors that explained over 60% of the variance, with 12 items significantly loading onto the primary factor. These items reflected behaviors associated with social avoidance, social anxiety or inflexibility and social confidence. These initial findings are encouraging and suggest that variability in the social responsiveness of rhesus monkeys can be quantified using the mSRS: a tool that has strong translational relevance for human disorders. With further modification, the mSRS may provide an promising new direction for research on the biological mechanisms underlying

  7. Airport Screening

    MedlinePlus

    ... 2011 Photo courtesy of Dan Paluska/Flickr Denver Airport Security Screening Introduction With air travel regaining popularity and increased secu- rity measures, airport security screening has become an area of interest for ...

  8. Health Screening

    MedlinePlus

    Screenings are tests that look for diseases before you have symptoms. Screening tests can find diseases early, when they're easier ... Overweight and obesity Prostate cancer in men Which tests you need depends on your age, your sex, ...

  9. MRSA Screening

    MedlinePlus

    ... be limited. Home Visit Global Sites Search Help? MRSA Screening Share this page: Was this page helpful? Formal name: Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus Screening Related tests: Wound Culture At a Glance ...

  10. HPLC–MS-MS Determination of ZCZ-011, A Novel Pharmacological Tool for Investigation of the Cannabinoid Receptor in Mouse Brain Using Clean Screen FASt™ Column Extraction

    PubMed Central

    Poklis, Justin L.; Clay, Deborah J.; Ignatowska-Jankowska, Bogna M.; Zanato, Chiara; Ross, Ruth A.; Greig, Iain R.; Abdullah, Rehab A.; Mustafa, Mohammed A.; Lichtman, Aron H.; Poklis, Alphonse

    2015-01-01

    A high-performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry method was developed for the detection and quantification of 6-methyl-3-(2-nitro-1-(thiophen-2-yl)propyl)-2-phenyl-1H-indole (ZCZ-011) using 2-phenylindole as the internal standard (ISTD). ZCZ-011 was synthesized as a possible positive allosteric modulator with the CB1 cannabinoid receptor. The analytical method employs a rapid extraction technique using Clean Screen FASt™ columns with a Positive Pressure Manifold. FASt™ columns were originally developed for urine drug analysis but we have successfully adapted them to the extraction of brain tissue. Chromatographic separation was performed on a Restek Allure Biphenyl 5 µ, 100 × 3.2 mm column (Bellefonte, PA). The mobile phase consisted of 1:9 deionized water with 10 mmol ammonium acetate and 0.1% formic acid–methanol. The following transition ions (m/z) were monitored for ZCZ-011: 363 > 207 and 363 > 110 and for the ISTD: 194 > 165 and 194 > 89. The FASt™ columns lowered and stabilized the ion suppression over the linear range of the assay (40–4,000 ng/g). The method was evaluated for recovery, ion suppression, accuracy/bias, intraday and interday precision, bench-top stability, freeze–thaw and post-preparative stability. The method was successfully applied to brain tissue from C57BL/6J mice that received intraperitoneal (i.p.) injections with 40 mg/kg of ZCZ-011 or vehicle. PMID:25737338

  11. Can Orthopantomography be used as a tool for screening of carotid atheromatous pathology and thus be used to help reduce the prevalence of ischemic stroke within the population?

    PubMed Central

    Chimenos-Küstner, Eduardo

    2012-01-01

    Objective: To assess the possibility of Dentists being able to screen patients with higher risk of vascular diseases. Material: Kodak 8000C Orthopantomographer, eco-Doppler Logiq-500 General Electric at the Lisbon Hospital Particular. Methods: Assessment of orthopantomographies made to 142 patients aged 50 or more, as well as the existing risk factors. Conduction of carotid eco-Doppler to patients who appear to have calcified plaques of the atheroma. Results: Strong dependence between dichotomised age and having the pathology (p = 0.02).Smokers are twice more likely to present plaques (OR= 2). Being hypertensive increases in about 1.4 the likelihood of having a stroke (OR= 1.4). Of the 27 individuals who presented calcifications in the Orthopantomography, they were all submitted to an eco-Doppler and 21 had the pathology confirmed. 27 individuals, who did not show any plaques in the Orthopantomography, were randomly selected to be the control group. They were submitted to an eco-Doppler. And 23 confirmed the non-existence of plaques. Conclusions: Orthopantomography used for assessing the oral cavity reveals more information which should be the object of the Dentist’s attention. Key words:Orthopantomography, atheroma, stroke. PMID:24558519

  12. Graphitized carbon nanofiber-Pt nanoparticle hybrids as sensitive tool for preparation of screen printing biosensors. Detection of lactate in wines and ciders.

    PubMed

    Loaiza, Oscar A; Lamas-Ardisana, Pedro J; Añorga, Larraitz; Jubete, Elena; Ruiz, Virginia; Borghei, Maryam; Cabañero, Germán; Grande, Hans J

    2015-02-01

    This work describes the fabrication of a new lactate biosensor. The strategy is based on the use of a novel hybrid nanomaterial for amperometric biosensors i.e. platinum nanoparticles (PtNps) supported on graphitized carbon nanofibers (PtNps/GCNF) prepared by chemical reduction of the Pt precursor at GCNF surfaces. The biosensors were constructed by covalent immobilization of lactate oxidase (LOx) onto screen printed carbon electrodes (SPCEs) modified with PtNps (PtNps/GCNF-SPCEs) using polyethyleneimine (PEI) and glutaraldehyde (GA). Experimental variables concerning both the biosensor design and the detection process were investigated for an optimal analytical performance. Lactate biosensors show good reproducibility (RSD 4.9%, n=10) and sensitivity (41,302±546) μA/Mcm(2), with a good limit of detection (6.9μM). Covalent immobilization of the enzyme allows the reuse of the biosensor for several measurements, converting them in a cheap alternative to the solid electrodes. The long-term stability of the biosensors was also evaluated. 90% of the signal was kept after 3months of storage at room temperature (RT), while 95% was retained after 18months at -20°C. These results demonstrate that the method provides sensitive electrochemical lactate biosensors where the stability of the enzymatic activity can be preserved for a long period of time in adequate storage conditions. PMID:25108199

  13. Turbo STIR magnetic resonance imaging as a whole-body screening tool for metastases in patients with breast carcinoma: preliminary clinical experience.

    PubMed

    Walker, R; Kessar, P; Blanchard, R; Dimasi, M; Harper, K; DeCarvalho, V; Yucel, E K; Patriquin, L; Eustace, S

    2000-04-01

    This study was undertaken to assess the utility of whole-body turbo short tau inversion recovery (STIR) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to detect metastases to liver, brain, and bone as a single examination in women with breast cancer. Seventeen patients with biopsy-proven breast cancer and suspected metastatic disease attending over a 12-month period referred for both conventional imaging and whole-body MRI were included in the study. Three patients were found to be free of metastases at both conventional and MR imaging. Appendicular or axial skeletal metastases were identified in 11 of 17 patients, with correlation between findings at whole-body MRI and scintigraphy in 15 of the 17 patients. Five patients had evidence of hepatic metastases on whole-body MRI, of which metastases were identified in only three patients at CT despite contrast enhancement. Four patients had brain abnormalities (metastases in three patients, meningioma in one patient) detected on both whole-body and dedicated brain MRI. Preliminary clinical experience suggests that turbo STIR whole-body MRI may represent a convenient and cost-effective method of total body screening for metastases in patients with breast carcinoma.

  14. 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

  15. LCD display screen performance testing for handheld thermal imaging cameras

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinaburg, Joshua B.; Amon, Francine; Hamins, Anthony; Boynton, Paul

    2006-05-01

    Handheld thermal imaging cameras are an important tool for the first responder community. As their use becomes more prevalent, it will become important for a set of standard test metrics to be available to characterize the performance of these cameras. A major factor in the performance of the imagers is the quality of the image on a display screen. An imager may employ any type of display screen, but the results of this paper will focus on those using liquid crystal displays. First responders, especially firefighters, in the field rely on the performance of this screen to relay vital information during critical situations. Current research on thermal imaging camera performance metrics for first responder applications uses trained observer tests or camera composite output signal measurements. Trained observer tests are subjective and composite output tests do not evaluate the performance of the complete imaging system. It is the goal of this work to develop a non-nondestructive, objective method that tests the performance of the entire thermal imaging camera system, from the infrared destructive, sensor to the display screen. Application of existing display screen performance metrics to thermal imaging cameras requires additional consideration. Most display screen test metrics require a well defined electronic input, with either full black or white pixel input, often encompassing detailed spatial patterns and resolution. Well characterized thermal inputs must be used to obtain accurate, repeatable, and non-destructive display screen measurements for infrared cameras. For this work, a thermal target is used to correlate the measured camera output with the actual display luminance. A test method was developed to determine display screen luminance. A well characterized CCD camera and digital recording device were used to determine an electro-optical transfer function for thermal imaging cameras. This value directly relates the composite output signal to the luminance

  16. Groundwater Screen

    1993-11-09

    GWSCREEN was developed for assessment of the groundwater pathway from leaching of radioactive and non radioactive substances from surface or buried sources and release to percolation ponds. The code calculates the limiting soil concentration or effluent release concentration such that, after leaching and transport to the aquifer, regulatory contaminant levels in groundwater are not exceeded. The code uses a mass conservation approach to model three processes: Contaminant release from a source volume, contaminant transport inmore » the unsaturated zone, and contaminant transport in the saturated zone. The source model considers the sorptive properties and solubility of the con