Science.gov

Sample records for advantages include reduced

  1. Reduced Toxicity Fuel Satellite Propulsion System Including Plasmatron

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, Steven J. (Inventor)

    2003-01-01

    A reduced toxicity fuel satellite propulsion system including a reduced toxicity propellant supply for consumption in an axial class thruster and an ACS class thruster. The system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to the ACS decomposing element of an ACS thruster. The ACS decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot propulsive gases. In addition the system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to an axial decomposing element of the axial thruster. The axial decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot gases. The system further includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying a second propellant to a combustion chamber of the axial thruster. whereby the hot gases and the second propellant auto-ignite and begin the combustion process for producing thrust.

  2. New risk-adjustment system was associated with reduced favorable selection in medicare advantage.

    PubMed

    McWilliams, J Michael; Hsu, John; Newhouse, Joseph P

    2012-12-01

    Health plans participating in the Medicare managed care program, called Medicare Advantage since 2003, have historically attracted healthier enrollees than has the traditional fee-for-service program. Medicare Advantage plans have gained financially from this favorable risk selection since their payments have traditionally been adjusted only minimally for clinical characteristics of enrollees, causing overpayment for healthier enrollees and underpayment for sicker ones. As a result, a new risk-adjustment system was phased in from 2004 to 2007, and a lock-in provision instituted to limit midyear disenrollment by enrollees experiencing health declines whose exodus could benefit plans financially. To determine whether these reforms were associated with intended reductions in risk selection, we compared differences in self-reported health care use and health between Medicare Advantage and traditional Medicare beneficiaries before versus after these reforms were implemented. We similarly compared differences between those who switched into or out of Medicare Advantage and nonswitchers. Most differences in 2001-03 were substantially narrowed by 2006-07, suggesting reduced selection. Similar risk-adjustment methods may help reduce incentives for plans competing in health insurance exchanges and accountable care organizations to select patients with favorable clinical risks.

  3. Evidence of a reduced home advantage when a team moves to a new stadium.

    PubMed

    Pollard, Richard

    2002-12-01

    Home advantage is well documented for professional baseball, basketball and ice hockey in North America. One of the possible causes of this advantage is familiarity with the local playing facility. This was investigated and quantified in an analysis of 37 teams moving to new stadiums, but in the same city, from 1987 to 2001. Home advantage during the first season in a new stadium after the move was significantly less than home advantage in the final season in the old stadium (P= 0.011). The reduction was evident in all three sports. Possible confounding factors, such as crowd size and crowd density, were considered but did not appear to have an effect. It is estimated that about 24% of the advantage of playing at home maybe lost when a team relocates to a new facility.

  4. Taking advantage of reduced droplet-surface interaction to optimize transport of bioanalytes in digital microfluidics.

    PubMed

    Freire, Sergio L S; Thorne, Nathaniel; Wutkowski, Michael; Dao, Selina

    2014-01-01

    Digital microfluidics (DMF), a technique for manipulation of droplets, is a promising alternative for the development of "lab-on-a-chip" platforms. Often, droplet motion relies on the wetting of a surface, directly associated with the application of an electric field; surface interactions, however, make motion dependent on droplet contents, limiting the breadth of applications of the technique. Some alternatives have been presented to minimize this dependence. However, they rely on the addition of extra chemical species to the droplet or its surroundings, which could potentially interact with droplet moieties. Addressing this challenge, our group recently developed Field-DW devices to allow the transport of cells and proteins in DMF, without extra additives. Here, the protocol for device fabrication and operation is provided, including the electronic interface for motion control. We also continue the studies with the devices, showing that multicellular, relatively large, model organisms can also be transported, arguably unaffected by the electric fields required for device operation. PMID:25407533

  5. Taking advantage of reduced droplet-surface interaction to optimize transport of bioanalytes in digital microfluidics.

    PubMed

    Freire, Sergio L S; Thorne, Nathaniel; Wutkowski, Michael; Dao, Selina

    2014-11-10

    Digital microfluidics (DMF), a technique for manipulation of droplets, is a promising alternative for the development of "lab-on-a-chip" platforms. Often, droplet motion relies on the wetting of a surface, directly associated with the application of an electric field; surface interactions, however, make motion dependent on droplet contents, limiting the breadth of applications of the technique. Some alternatives have been presented to minimize this dependence. However, they rely on the addition of extra chemical species to the droplet or its surroundings, which could potentially interact with droplet moieties. Addressing this challenge, our group recently developed Field-DW devices to allow the transport of cells and proteins in DMF, without extra additives. Here, the protocol for device fabrication and operation is provided, including the electronic interface for motion control. We also continue the studies with the devices, showing that multicellular, relatively large, model organisms can also be transported, arguably unaffected by the electric fields required for device operation.

  6. Steps to reduce favorable risk selection in medicare advantage largely succeeded, boding well for health insurance exchanges.

    PubMed

    Newhouse, Joseph P; Price, Mary; Huang, Jie; McWilliams, J Michael; Hsu, John

    2012-12-01

    Within Medicare, the Medicare Advantage program has historically attracted better risks-healthier, lower-cost patients-than has traditional Medicare. The disproportionate enrollment of lower-cost patients and avoidance of higher-cost ones during the 1990s-known as favorable selection-resulted in Medicare's spending more per beneficiary who enrolled in Medicare Advantage than if the enrollee had remained in traditional Medicare. We looked at two measures that can indicate whether favorable selection is taking place-predicted spending on beneficiaries and mortality-and studied whether policies that Medicare implemented in the past decade succeeded in reducing favorable selection in Medicare Advantage. We found that these policies-an improved risk adjustment formula and a prohibition on monthly disenrollment by beneficiaries-largely succeeded. Differences in predicted spending between those switching from traditional Medicare to Medicare Advantage relative to those who remained in traditional Medicare markedly narrowed, as did adjusted mortality rates. Because insurance exchanges set up under the Affordable Care Act will employ similar policies to combat risk selection, our results give reason for optimism about managing competition among health plans.

  7. Reduced Toxicity Fuel Satellite Propulsion System Including Axial Thruster and ACS Thruster Combination

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, Steven J. (Inventor)

    2001-01-01

    A reduced toxicity fuel satellite propulsion system including a reduced toxicity propellant supply for consumption in an axial class thruster and an ACS class thruster. The system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to the ACS decomposing element of an ACS thruster. The ACS decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot propulsive gases. In addition the system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to an axial decomposing element of the axial thruster. The axial decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot gases. The system further includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying a second propellant to a combustion chamber of the axial thruster, whereby the hot gases and the second propellant auto-ignite and begin the combustion process for producing thrust.

  8. Reduced Toxicity Fuel Satellite Propulsion System Including Catalytic Decomposing Element with Hydrogen Peroxide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, Steven J. (Inventor)

    2002-01-01

    A reduced toxicity fuel satellite propulsion system including a reduced toxicity propellant supply for consumption in an axial class thruster and an ACS class thruster. The system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to the ACS decomposing element of an ACS thruster. The ACS decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot propulsive gases. In addition the system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to an axial decomposing element of the axial thruster. The axial decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot gases. The system further includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying a second propellant to a combustion chamber of the axial thruster, whereby the hot gases and the second propellant auto-ignite and begin the combustion process for producing thrust.

  9. Reduced Toxicity Fuel Satellite Propulsion System Including Fuel Cell Reformer with Alcohols Such as Methanol

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, Steven J. (Inventor)

    2001-01-01

    A reduced toxicity fuel satellite propulsion system including a reduced toxicity propellant supply for consumption in an axial class thruster and an ACS class thruster. The system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to the ACS decomposing element of an ACS thruster. The ACS decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot propulsive gases. In addition the system includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying the reduced toxicity propellant to an axial decomposing element of the axial thruster. The axial decomposing element is operative to decompose the reduced toxicity propellant into hot gases. The system further includes suitable valves and conduits for supplying a second propellant to a combustion chamber of the axial thruster, whereby the hot gases and the second propellant auto-ignite and begin the combustion process for producing thrust.

  10. Early action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions before the commitment period of the Kyoto protocol: advantages and disadvantages.

    PubMed

    Michaelowa, A; Rolfe, C

    2001-09-01

    Current "business as usual" projections suggest greenhouse gas emissions from industrialized nations will grow substantially over the next decade. However, if it comes into force, the Kyoto Protocol will require industrialized nations to reduce emissions to an average of 5% below 1990 levels in the 2008-2012 period. Taking early action to close this gap has a number of advantages. It reduces the risks of passing thresholds that trigger climate change "surprises." Early action also increases future generations' ability to choose greater levels of climate protection, and it leads to faster reductions of other pollutants. From an economic sense, early action is important because it allows shifts to less carbon-intensive technologies during the course of normal capital stock turnover. Moreover, many options for emission reduction have negative costs, and thus are economically worthwhile, because of paybacks in energy costs, healthcare costs, and other benefits. Finally, early emission reductions enhance the probability of successful ratification and lower the risk of noncompliance with the protocol. We discuss policy approaches for the period prior to 2008. Disadvantages of the current proposals for Credit for Early Action are the possibility of adverse selection due to problematic baseline calculation methods as well as the distributionary impacts of allocating a part of the emissions budget already before 2008. One simple policy without drawbacks is the so-called baseline protection, which removes the disincentive to early action due to the expectation that businesses may, in the future, receive emission rights in proportion to past emissions. It is particularly important to adopt policies that shift investment in long-lived capital stock towards less carbon-intensive technologies and to encourage innovation and technology development that will reduce future compliance costs.

  11. Including dietary fiber and resistant starch to increase satiety and reduce aggression in gestating sows

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The swine industry is under a great deal of pressure to return sows to group housing. However, aggression during mixing of pregnant sows impacts sow welfare and productivity. The aim of this study was to increase satiety and reduce aggression by including dietary fiber and fermentable carbohydrate. ...

  12. Abuse liability assessment of tobacco products including potential reduced exposure products.

    PubMed

    Carter, Lawrence P; Stitzer, Maxine L; Henningfield, Jack E; O'Connor, Rich J; Cummings, K Michael; Hatsukami, Dorothy K

    2009-12-01

    The harm produced by tobacco products is a result of frequent use of a highly toxic product. Reducing the adverse public health impact of tobacco products might be most effectively achieved by reducing the likelihood of their use and the toxicity of the products. Products that retain some characteristics of cigarettes but have been altered with the intention of reducing toxicity have been referred to as modified risk tobacco products or potential reduced exposure products (MRTP/PREP). Evaluation of their content, emission, and toxicity is discussed in other articles in this special issue. Here, we discuss the methodology that has been used to examine the likelihood of abuse or addiction. Abuse liability assessment (ALA) methodology has been used by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other drug regulatory agencies world-wide for decades to assess the risks posed by a wide variety of pharmacologically active substances. ALA is routinely required among other evaluations of safety during the pre-market assessment of new drugs, and is continually adapted to meet the challenges posed by new drug classes and drug formulations. In the 2009 law giving FDA regulation over tobacco products, FDA is now required to evaluate new tobacco products including MRTP/PREPs to determine their risk for abuse and toxicity at the population level. This article describes the traditional tools and methods of ALA that can be used to evaluate new tobacco and nicotine products including MRTP/PREPs. Such ALA data could contribute to the scientific foundation on which future public policy decisions are based.

  13. Abuse Liability Assessment of Tobacco Products Including Potential Reduced Exposure Products (PREPs)

    PubMed Central

    Carter, Lawrence P.; Stitzer, Maxine L.; Henningfield, Jack E.; O'Connor, Rich J.; Cummings, K. Michael; Hatsukami, Dorothy K.

    2009-01-01

    The harm produced by tobacco products is a result of frequent use of a highly toxic product. Reducing the adverse public health impact of tobacco products might be most effectively achieved by reducing the likelihood of their use and the toxicity of the products. Products that retain some characteristics of cigarettes, but have been altered with the intention of reducing toxicity have been referred to as modified risk tobacco products or potential reduced exposure products (MRTP/PREPS). Evaluation of their content, emission, and toxicity is discussed in other articles in this special issue. Here, we discuss the methodology that has been used to examine the likelihood of abuse or addiction. Abuse liability assessment (ALA) methodology has been used by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other drug regulatory agencies world-wide for decades to assess the risks posed by a wide variety of pharmacologically active substances. ALA is routinely required among other evaluations of safety during the premarket assessment of new drugs, and is continually adapted to meet the challenges posed by new drug classes and drug formulations. In the 2009 law giving FDA regulation over tobacco products, FDA is now required to evaluate new tobacco products including MRTP/PREPs to determine their risk for abuse and toxicity at the population level. This paper describes the traditional tools and methods of ALA that can be used to evaluate new tobacco and nicotine products including MRTP/PREPs. Such ALA data could contribute to the scientific foundation on which future public policy decisions are based. PMID:19959676

  14. Measuring and Reducing Off-Target Activities of Programmable Nucleases Including CRISPR-Cas9.

    PubMed

    Koo, Taeyoung; Lee, Jungjoon; Kim, Jin-Soo

    2015-06-01

    Programmable nucleases, which include zinc-finger nucleases (ZFNs), transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs), and RNA-guided engineered nucleases (RGENs) repurposed from the type II clustered, regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-CRISPR-associated protein 9 (Cas9) system are now widely used for genome editing in higher eukaryotic cells and whole organisms, revolutionising almost every discipline in biological research, medicine, and biotechnology. All of these nucleases, however, induce off-target mutations at sites homologous in sequence with on-target sites, limiting their utility in many applications including gene or cell therapy. In this review, we compare methods for detecting nuclease off-target mutations. We also review methods for profiling genome-wide off-target effects and discuss how to reduce or avoid off-target mutations.

  15. Including dietary fiber and resistant starch to increase satiety and reduce aggression in gestating sows.

    PubMed

    Sapkota, A; Marchant-Forde, J N; Richert, B T; Lay, D C

    2016-05-01

    Aggression during mixing of pregnant sows impacts sow welfare and productivity. The aim of this study was to increase satiety and reduce aggression by including dietary fiber and fermentable carbohydrates. Sows were housed in individual stalls 7 to 14 d after breeding (moving day was considered d 0 of treatment) and were fed (at 0700 h) with a CONTROL (corn-soybean meal based with no additional fiber sources), RSTARCH (10.8% resistant starch), BEETPULP (27.2% sugar beet pulp), SOYHULLS (19.1% soybean hulls), or INCSOY (14.05% soybean hulls) for 21 d (5 sows/diet × 5 diets × 8 replications = 200 sows). The CONTROL diet was targeted to contain 185 g(d∙sow) NDF and the other diets were targeted to contain 350 g(d∙sow) NDF. The INCSOY diet was fed at 2.2 kg/(d∙sow) and the other diets were fed at 2 kg(d∙sow). On d 22, sows were mixed in groups of 5 (at 1200 h). Behaviors in stalls (on d 1, 7, 14, and 21) and after mixing (d 22 and 23), heart rate (on d 1, 7, 14, and 21), blood metabolites (on d 2, 8, 15, 22, and 25), and the effects of diets on production were collected and analyzed. Sows stood more ( < 0.01) and rested less ( < 0.001) over time irrespective of the diet. Sows on BEETPULP stood more ( < 0.01) and sows on SOYHULLS rested more ( < 0.01). Sham chewing increased over days irrespective of the diet. Chewing behavior (bar and feeder) increased with days on diet ( < 0.001) and was lowest in sows on the SOYHULLS diet ( = 0.045). When mixed, biting frequency in the first hour was highest for sows on the CONTROL diet (236.5 ± 62.6) and lowest for sows on the RSTARCH diet (90.5 ± 30.5). Skin lesions increased ( < 0.001) 24 h after mixing sows irrespective of diet. Blood urea nitrogen (BUN) concentration was lowest in sows fed BEETPULP and SOYHULLS ( < 0.001). Serum glucose concentration was highest in sows fed RSTARCH and BEETPULP ( = 0.04), but there was no day effect ( = 0.62) or diet × day interaction ( = 0.60). The NEFA was greatest in sows fed

  16. Including dietary fiber and resistant starch to increase satiety and reduce aggression in gestating sows.

    PubMed

    Sapkota, A; Marchant-Forde, J N; Richert, B T; Lay, D C

    2016-05-01

    Aggression during mixing of pregnant sows impacts sow welfare and productivity. The aim of this study was to increase satiety and reduce aggression by including dietary fiber and fermentable carbohydrates. Sows were housed in individual stalls 7 to 14 d after breeding (moving day was considered d 0 of treatment) and were fed (at 0700 h) with a CONTROL (corn-soybean meal based with no additional fiber sources), RSTARCH (10.8% resistant starch), BEETPULP (27.2% sugar beet pulp), SOYHULLS (19.1% soybean hulls), or INCSOY (14.05% soybean hulls) for 21 d (5 sows/diet × 5 diets × 8 replications = 200 sows). The CONTROL diet was targeted to contain 185 g(d∙sow) NDF and the other diets were targeted to contain 350 g(d∙sow) NDF. The INCSOY diet was fed at 2.2 kg/(d∙sow) and the other diets were fed at 2 kg(d∙sow). On d 22, sows were mixed in groups of 5 (at 1200 h). Behaviors in stalls (on d 1, 7, 14, and 21) and after mixing (d 22 and 23), heart rate (on d 1, 7, 14, and 21), blood metabolites (on d 2, 8, 15, 22, and 25), and the effects of diets on production were collected and analyzed. Sows stood more ( < 0.01) and rested less ( < 0.001) over time irrespective of the diet. Sows on BEETPULP stood more ( < 0.01) and sows on SOYHULLS rested more ( < 0.01). Sham chewing increased over days irrespective of the diet. Chewing behavior (bar and feeder) increased with days on diet ( < 0.001) and was lowest in sows on the SOYHULLS diet ( = 0.045). When mixed, biting frequency in the first hour was highest for sows on the CONTROL diet (236.5 ± 62.6) and lowest for sows on the RSTARCH diet (90.5 ± 30.5). Skin lesions increased ( < 0.001) 24 h after mixing sows irrespective of diet. Blood urea nitrogen (BUN) concentration was lowest in sows fed BEETPULP and SOYHULLS ( < 0.001). Serum glucose concentration was highest in sows fed RSTARCH and BEETPULP ( = 0.04), but there was no day effect ( = 0.62) or diet × day interaction ( = 0.60). The NEFA was greatest in sows fed

  17. A general review of concepts for reducing skin friction, including recommendations for future studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fischer, M. C.; Ash, R. L.

    1974-01-01

    Four main concepts which have significantly reduced skin friction in experimental studies are discussed; suction, gaseous injection, particle additives, and compliant wall. It is considered possible that each of these concepts could be developed and applied in viable skin friction reduction systems for aircraft application. Problem areas with each concept are discussed, and recommendations for future studies are made.

  18. Advantages of a 3-parameter reduced constitutive model for the measurement of polymers elastic modulus using tensile tests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blaise, A.; André, S.; Delobelle, P.; Meshaka, Y.; Cunat, C.

    2016-04-01

    Exact measurements of the rheological parameters of time-dependent materials are crucial to improve our understanding of their intimate relation to the internal bulk microstructure. Concerning solid polymers and the apparently simple determination of Young's modulus in tensile tests, international standards rely on basic protocols that are known to lead to erroneous values. This paper describes an approach allowing a correct measurement of the instantaneous elastic modulus of polymers by a tensile test. It is based on the use of an appropriate reduced model to describe the behavior of the material up to great strains, together with well-established principles of parameter estimation in engineering science. These principles are objective tools that are used to determine which parameters of a model can be correctly identified according to the informational content of a given data set. The assessment of the methodology and of the measurements is accomplished by comparing the results with those obtained from two other physical experiments, probing the material response at small temporal and length scales, namely, ultrasound measurements with excitation at 5 MHz and modulated nanoindentation tests over a few nanometers of amplitude.

  19. Launch Lock Assemblies with Reduced Preload and Spacecraft Isolation Systems Including the Same

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barber, Tim Daniel (Inventor); Young, Ken (Inventor); Hindle, Timothy (Inventor)

    2016-01-01

    Launch lock assemblies with reduced preload are provided. The launch lock assembly comprises first and second mount pieces, a releasable clamp device, and a pair of retracting assemblies. Each retracting assembly comprises a pair of toothed members having interacting toothed surfaces. The releasable clamp device normally maintains the first and second mount pieces in clamped engagement. When the releasable clamp device is actuated, the first and second mount pieces are released from clamped engagement and one toothed member of each retracting assembly moves in an opposite direction relative to the other one toothed member of the other retracting assembly to define an axial gap on each side of the first mount piece.

  20. Including All Staff in an Alternative School's Effort to Reduce Violence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waterman, Stephanie J.; Burstyn, Joan N.

    2008-01-01

    Interview data from non-teaching staff at Garfield alternative school revealed how the entire staff-including custodians, secretaries, and hall monitors-contributed to the success of the school's violence prevention efforts. The school functioned democratically: non-teaching staff attended violence prevention workshops offered to all staff; the…

  1. Photomultiplier circuit including means for rapidly reducing the sensitivity thereof. [and protection from radiation damage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcclenahan, J. O. (Inventor)

    1974-01-01

    A simple, reliable and inexpensive control circuit is described for rapidly reducing the bias voltage across one or more of the dynode stages of a photomultiplier, to substantially decrease its sensitivity to incoming light at those times where excess light intensity might damage the tube. The control circuit comprises a switching device, such as a silicon controlled rectifier (SCR), coupled between a pair of the electrodes in the tube, preferably the cathode and first dynode, or the first and second dynodes, the switching device operating in response to a trigger pulse applied to its gate to short circuit the two electrodes. To insure the desired reduction in sensitivity, two switching stages, the devices be employed between two of the electrode stages, the devices being operated simultaneously to short circuit both stages.

  2. Parametric reduced-order models of battery pack vibration including structural variation and prestress effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Sung-Kwon; Epureanu, Bogdan I.; Castanier, Matthew P.

    2014-09-01

    The goal of this work is to develop a numerical model for the vibration of hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) battery packs to enable probabilistic forced response simulations for the effects of variations. There are two important types of variations that affect their structural response significantly: the prestress that is applied when joining the cells within a pack; and the small, random structural property discrepancies among the cells of a battery pack. The main contributions of this work are summarized as follows. In order to account for these two important variations, a new parametric reduced order model (PROM) formulation is derived by employing three key observations: (1) the stiffness matrix can be parameterized for different levels of prestress, (2) the mode shapes of a battery pack with cell-to-cell variation can be represented as a linear combination of the mode shapes of the nominal system, and (3) the frame holding each cell has vibratory motion. A numerical example of an academic battery pack with pouch cells is presented to demonstrate that the PROM captures the effects of both prestress and structural variation on battery packs. The PROM is validated numerically by comparing full-order finite element models (FEMs) of the same systems.

  3. A reduced Iwan model that includes pinning for bolted joint mechanics

    DOE PAGES

    Brake, Matthew Robert

    2016-05-12

    Bolted are joints are prevalent in most assembled structures; however, predictive models for the behavior of these joints do not yet exist. Many calibrated models have been proposed to represent the stiffness and energy dissipation characteristics of a bolted joint. In particular, the Iwan model put forth by Segalman and later extended by Mignolet has been shown to be able to predict the response of a jointed structure over a range of excitations once calibrated at a nominal load. The Iwan model, however, is not widely adopted due to the high computational expense of implementing it in a numerical simulation.more » To address this, an analytical, closed form representation of the Iwan model is derived under the hypothesis that upon a load reversal, the distribution of friction elements within the interface resembles a scaled version of the original distribution of friction elements. In conclusion, the Iwan model is extended to include the pinning behavior inherent in a bolted joint.« less

  4. Educational advantage.

    PubMed

    2006-06-01

    WHAT SPECIAL ADVANTAGE DOES JERHRE offer to research ethics education? Empirical research employs concepts and methods for understanding and addressing problems; the methods employed can be generalized to related problems in new contexts. Research published in JERHRE uses concepts and methods designed to understand and solve ethical problems in human research. These tools can be reused by JERHRE's readership as part of their learning and problem solving. Instead of telling scientists, students, ethics committee members and others what they ought to do, educators can use curriculum based on the empirical articles contained in JERHRE to enable learners to solve the particular research-related problems they confront. Each issue of JERHRE publishes curriculum based on articles published therein. The lesson plans are deliberately general so that they can be adapted to the particular learners.

  5. Educational advantage.

    PubMed

    2006-06-01

    WHAT SPECIAL ADVANTAGE DOES JERHRE offer to research ethics education? Empirical research employs concepts and methods for understanding and addressing problems; the methods employed can be generalized to related problems in new contexts. Research published in JERHRE uses concepts and methods designed to understand and solve ethical problems in human research. These tools can be reused by JERHRE's readership as part of their learning and problem solving. Instead of telling scientists, students, ethics committee members and others what they ought to do, educators can use curriculum based on the empirical articles contained in JERHRE to enable learners to solve the particular research-related problems they confront. Each issue of JERHRE publishes curriculum based on articles published therein. The lesson plans are deliberately general so that they can be adapted to the particular learners. PMID:19385873

  6. Educational advantage.

    PubMed

    2006-03-01

    What special advantage does JERHRE offer to research ethics education? Empirical research employs concepts and methods for understanding and addressing problems; the methods employed can be generalized to related problems in new contexts. Research published in JERHRE uses concepts and methods designed to understand and solve ethical problems in human research. These tools can be reused by JERHRE's readership as part of their learning and problem solving. Instead of telling scientists, students, ethics committee members and others what they ought to do, educators can use curriculum based on the empirical articles contained in JERHRE to enable learners to solve the particular research-related problems they confront. Each issue of JERHRE publishes curriculum based on articles published therein. The lesson plans are deliberately general so that they can be adapted to the particular learners. PMID:19385863

  7. Reduced Dietary Sodium Intake Increases Heart Rate. A Meta-Analysis of 63 Randomized Controlled Trials Including 72 Study Populations

    PubMed Central

    Graudal, Niels A.; Hubeck-Graudal, Thorbjørn; Jürgens, Gesche

    2016-01-01

    Reduced dietary sodium intake (sodium reduction) increases heart rate in some studies of animals and humans. As heart rate is independently associated with the development of heart failure and increased risk of premature death a potential increase in heart rate could be a harmful side-effect of sodium reduction. The purpose of the present meta-analysis was to investigate the effect of sodium reduction on heart rate. Relevant studies were retrieved from an updated pool of 176 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in the period 1973–2014. Sixty-three of the RCTs including 72 study populations reported data on heart rate. In a meta-analysis of these data sodium reduction increased heart rate with 1.65 beats per minute [95% CI: 1.19, 2.11], p < 0.00001, corresponding to 2.4% of the baseline heart rate. This effect was independent of baseline blood pressure. In conclusion sodium reduction increases heart rate by as much (2.4%) as it decreases blood pressure (2.5%). This side-effect, which may cause harmful health effects, contributes to the need for a revision of the present dietary guidelines. PMID:27047393

  8. Reduced Dietary Sodium Intake Increases Heart Rate. A Meta-Analysis of 63 Randomized Controlled Trials Including 72 Study Populations.

    PubMed

    Graudal, Niels A; Hubeck-Graudal, Thorbjørn; Jürgens, Gesche

    2016-01-01

    Reduced dietary sodium intake (sodium reduction) increases heart rate in some studies of animals and humans. As heart rate is independently associated with the development of heart failure and increased risk of premature death a potential increase in heart rate could be a harmful side-effect of sodium reduction. The purpose of the present meta-analysis was to investigate the effect of sodium reduction on heart rate. Relevant studies were retrieved from an updated pool of 176 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in the period 1973-2014. Sixty-three of the RCTs including 72 study populations reported data on heart rate. In a meta-analysis of these data sodium reduction increased heart rate with 1.65 beats per minute [95% CI: 1.19, 2.11], p < 0.00001, corresponding to 2.4% of the baseline heart rate. This effect was independent of baseline blood pressure. In conclusion sodium reduction increases heart rate by as much (2.4%) as it decreases blood pressure (2.5%). This side-effect, which may cause harmful health effects, contributes to the need for a revision of the present dietary guidelines.

  9. Altered S-nitrosothiol homeostasis provides a survival advantage to breast cancer cells in HER2 tumors and reduces their sensitivity to trastuzumab.

    PubMed

    Cañas, Amanda; López-Sánchez, Laura M; Peñarando, Jon; Valverde, Araceli; Conde, Francisco; Hernández, Vanessa; Fuentes, Elena; López-Pedrera, Chary; de la Haba-Rodríguez, Juan R; Aranda, Enrique; Rodríguez-Ariza, Antonio

    2016-04-01

    The monoclonal antibody trastuzumab against HER2/neu, which is overexpressed in 15-20% of breast cancers, has clinical efficacy but many patients do not respond to initial treatment or develop resistance during treatment. Nitric oxide (NO) regulates cell signaling by targeting specific cysteine residues in proteins, forming S-nitrosothiols (SNO) in a process known as S-nitrosylation. We previously reported that molecular characteristics in breast cancer may dictate the tumor response to impaired SNO homeostasis. In the present study, we explored the role of SNO homeostasis in HER2 breast tumors. The antiproliferative action of trastuzumab in HER2-overexpressing BT-474 and SKBR-3 cells was suppressed when S-nitrosoglutathione reductase (GSNOR/ADH5) activity, which plays a key role in SNO homeostasis, was specifically inhibited with the pyrrole derivative compound N6022. Moreover, GSNOR inhibition restored the activation of survival signaling pathways involved in the resistance to anti-HER2 therapies (AKT, Src and c-Abl kinases and TrkA/NRTK1, TrkB/NRTK2, EphA1 and EphA3 receptors) and reduced the apoptotic effect of trastuzumab. Accordingly, GSNOR inhibition augmented the S-nitrosylation of apoptosis-related proteins, including Apaf-1, pSer73/63 c-Jun, calcineurin subunit α and HSF1. In agreement with in vitro data, immunohistochemical analyses of 51 breast tumors showed that HER2 expression was associated with lower expression of GSNOR protein. Moreover, gene expression analysis confirmed that high ADH5/GSNOR gene expression was associated with high patient survival rates in HER2 tumors. In conclusion, our data provide evidence of molecular mechanisms contributing to the progression of HER2+ breast cancers and could facilitate the development of therapeutic options to counteract resistance to anti-HER2 therapies. PMID:26854735

  10. Altered S-nitrosothiol homeostasis provides a survival advantage to breast cancer cells in HER2 tumors and reduces their sensitivity to trastuzumab.

    PubMed

    Cañas, Amanda; López-Sánchez, Laura M; Peñarando, Jon; Valverde, Araceli; Conde, Francisco; Hernández, Vanessa; Fuentes, Elena; López-Pedrera, Chary; de la Haba-Rodríguez, Juan R; Aranda, Enrique; Rodríguez-Ariza, Antonio

    2016-04-01

    The monoclonal antibody trastuzumab against HER2/neu, which is overexpressed in 15-20% of breast cancers, has clinical efficacy but many patients do not respond to initial treatment or develop resistance during treatment. Nitric oxide (NO) regulates cell signaling by targeting specific cysteine residues in proteins, forming S-nitrosothiols (SNO) in a process known as S-nitrosylation. We previously reported that molecular characteristics in breast cancer may dictate the tumor response to impaired SNO homeostasis. In the present study, we explored the role of SNO homeostasis in HER2 breast tumors. The antiproliferative action of trastuzumab in HER2-overexpressing BT-474 and SKBR-3 cells was suppressed when S-nitrosoglutathione reductase (GSNOR/ADH5) activity, which plays a key role in SNO homeostasis, was specifically inhibited with the pyrrole derivative compound N6022. Moreover, GSNOR inhibition restored the activation of survival signaling pathways involved in the resistance to anti-HER2 therapies (AKT, Src and c-Abl kinases and TrkA/NRTK1, TrkB/NRTK2, EphA1 and EphA3 receptors) and reduced the apoptotic effect of trastuzumab. Accordingly, GSNOR inhibition augmented the S-nitrosylation of apoptosis-related proteins, including Apaf-1, pSer73/63 c-Jun, calcineurin subunit α and HSF1. In agreement with in vitro data, immunohistochemical analyses of 51 breast tumors showed that HER2 expression was associated with lower expression of GSNOR protein. Moreover, gene expression analysis confirmed that high ADH5/GSNOR gene expression was associated with high patient survival rates in HER2 tumors. In conclusion, our data provide evidence of molecular mechanisms contributing to the progression of HER2+ breast cancers and could facilitate the development of therapeutic options to counteract resistance to anti-HER2 therapies.

  11. Biomarkers of sulfate reducing bacteria from a variety of different aged samples including a modern microbial mat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pages, A.; Grice, K.; Lockhart, R.; Holman, A.; Melendez, I.; Van Kranendonk, M.; Jaraula, C.

    2011-12-01

    Most biomarkers present in sediments occur in only trace concentrations, trapped in kerogen or may be highly functionalised especially in recent sedimentary deposits making them difficult to chromatographically resolve, thus presenting considerable analytical challenges, especially for isotope studies. Innovative hydro (Hy) pyrolysis (Py) techniques are able to target or convert many of these compounds into free hydrocarbons more amenable to gas chromatography mass-spectrometry (GC-MS) and compound-specific isotope analysis (CSIA). HyPy has been applied to a modern layered smooth mat from Shark Bay, Western Australia. Saturate and aromatic fractions from different layers of the mat have been analysed by GC-MS and CSIA. After HyPy, an even-odd distribution of n-alkanes has been revealed as well as very long-chain n-alkanes up to n-C38. Stable carbon isotopic values of the n-alkanes indicated the presence of at least two bacterial communities. The short-chain n-alkanes were likely to be representative of a cyanobacteria community (δ13C, C15-C23, - 18 to -25 %VPDB) while the carbon isotopic values of the long-chain n-alkanes supported the presence of sulfate reducing bacteria (δ13C, C25-C33, - 30 to - 34 %VPDB). Long-chain fatty acids have been previously reported in sulfate reducing bacteria. It is hypothesised that this distribution and isotopic character representing sulfate reducing bacteria consortia may be preserved in the rock record. This hypothesis has been tested in Australian rocks: a Devonian carbonaceous concretion containing an exceptionally well preserved fossil invertebrate from the Canning Basin, Western Australia, a Paleoproterozoic sample (1.6 billion years old) from a lead-zinc ore deposit from the McArthur Basin, Northern Territories and a Paleoproterozoic chert (2.3 billion years old) from the Pilbara, Western Australia. Biomarkers of these samples showed a strong predominance of long-chain n-alkanes, up to n-C38 with an even-odd distribution

  12. Quercetin reduces obesity-associated ATM infiltration and inflammation in mice: a mechanism including AMPKα1/SIRT1[S

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Jing; Zhang, Xian; Zhang, Lei; Bian, Hui-Xi; Xu, Na; Bao, Bin; Liu, Jian

    2014-01-01

    Adipose tissue macrophage (ATM) plays a central role in obesity-associated inflammation and insulin resistance. Quercetin, a dietary flavonoid, possesses anti-inflammation and anti-insulin resistance properties. However, it is unclear whether quercetin can alleviate high-fat diet (HFD)-induced ATM infiltration and inflammation in mice. In this study, 5-week-old C57BL/6 mice were fed low-fat diet, HFD, or HFD with 0.l% quercetin for 12 weeks, respectively. Dietary quercetin reduced HFD-induced body weight gain and improved insulin sensitivity and glucose intolerance in mice. Meanwhile, dietary quercetin enhanced glucose transporter 4 translocation and protein kinase B signal in epididymis adipose tissues (EATs), suggesting that it heightened glucose uptake in adipose tissues. Histological and real-time PCR analysis revealed that quercetin attenuated mast cell and macrophage infiltration into EATs in HFD-fed mice. Dietary quercetin also modified the phenotype ratio of M1/M2 macrophages, lowered the levels of proinflammatory cytokines, and enhanced adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) α1 phosphorylation and silent information regulator 1 (SIRT1) expression in EATs. Further, using AMPK activator 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide-1-β4-ribofuranoside and inhibitor Compound C, we found that quercetin inhibited polarization and inflammation of mouse bone marrow-derived macrophages through an AMPKα1/SIRT1-mediated mechanism. In conclusion, dietary quercetin might suppress ATM infiltration and inflammation through the AMPKα1/SIRT1 pathway in HFD-fed mice PMID:24465016

  13. The reduced mycorrhizal colonisation (rmc) mutation of tomato disrupts five gene sequences including the CYCLOPS/IPD3 homologue.

    PubMed

    Larkan, Nicholas J; Ruzicka, Dan R; Edmonds-Tibbett, Tamara; Durkin, Jonathan M H; Jackson, Louise E; Smith, F Andrew; Schachtman, Daniel P; Smith, Sally E; Barker, Susan J

    2013-10-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis in vascular plant roots is an ancient mutualistic interaction that evolved with land plants. More recently evolved root mutualisms have recruited components of the AM signalling pathway as identified with molecular approaches in model legume research. Earlier we reported that the reduced mycorrhizal colonisation (rmc) mutation of tomato mapped to chromosome 8. Here we report additional functional characterisation of the rmc mutation using genotype grafts and proteomic and transcriptomic analyses. Our results led to identification of the precise genome location of the Rmc locus from which we identified the mutation by sequencing. The rmc phenotype results from a deletion that disrupts five predicted gene sequences, one of which has close sequence match to the CYCLOPS/IPD3 gene identified in legumes as an essential intracellular regulator of both AM and rhizobial symbioses. Identification of two other genes not located at the rmc locus but with altered expression in the rmc genotype is also described. Possible roles of the other four disrupted genes in the deleted region are discussed. Our results support the identification of CYCLOPS/IPD3 in legumes and rice as a key gene required for AM symbiosis. The extensive characterisation of rmc in comparison with its 'parent' 76R, which has a normal mycorrhizal phenotype, has validated these lines as an important comparative model for glasshouse and field studies of AM and non-mycorrhizal plants with respect to plant competition and microbial interactions with vascular plant roots.

  14. The reduced mycorrhizal colonisation (rmc) mutation of tomato disrupts five gene sequences including the CYCLOPS/IPD3 homologue.

    PubMed

    Larkan, Nicholas J; Ruzicka, Dan R; Edmonds-Tibbett, Tamara; Durkin, Jonathan M H; Jackson, Louise E; Smith, F Andrew; Schachtman, Daniel P; Smith, Sally E; Barker, Susan J

    2013-10-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis in vascular plant roots is an ancient mutualistic interaction that evolved with land plants. More recently evolved root mutualisms have recruited components of the AM signalling pathway as identified with molecular approaches in model legume research. Earlier we reported that the reduced mycorrhizal colonisation (rmc) mutation of tomato mapped to chromosome 8. Here we report additional functional characterisation of the rmc mutation using genotype grafts and proteomic and transcriptomic analyses. Our results led to identification of the precise genome location of the Rmc locus from which we identified the mutation by sequencing. The rmc phenotype results from a deletion that disrupts five predicted gene sequences, one of which has close sequence match to the CYCLOPS/IPD3 gene identified in legumes as an essential intracellular regulator of both AM and rhizobial symbioses. Identification of two other genes not located at the rmc locus but with altered expression in the rmc genotype is also described. Possible roles of the other four disrupted genes in the deleted region are discussed. Our results support the identification of CYCLOPS/IPD3 in legumes and rice as a key gene required for AM symbiosis. The extensive characterisation of rmc in comparison with its 'parent' 76R, which has a normal mycorrhizal phenotype, has validated these lines as an important comparative model for glasshouse and field studies of AM and non-mycorrhizal plants with respect to plant competition and microbial interactions with vascular plant roots. PMID:23572326

  15. Binocular advantages in reading.

    PubMed

    Jainta, Stephanie; Blythe, Hazel I; Liversedge, Simon P

    2014-03-01

    Reading, an essential skill for successful function in today's society, is a complex psychological process involving vision, memory, and language comprehension. Variability in fixation durations during reading reflects the ease of text comprehension, and increased word frequency results in reduced fixation times. Critically, readers not only process the fixated foveal word but also preprocess the parafoveal word to its right, thereby facilitating subsequent foveal processing. Typically, text is presented binocularly, and the oculomotor control system precisely coordinates the two frontally positioned eyes online. Binocular, compared to monocular, visual processing typically leads to superior performance, termed the "binocular advantage"; few studies have investigated the binocular advantage in reading. We used saccade-contingent display change methodology to demonstrate the benefit of binocular relative to monocular text presentation for both parafoveal and foveal lexical processing during reading. Our results demonstrate that denial of a unified visual signal derived from binocular inputs provides a cost to the efficiency of reading, particularly in relation to high-frequency words. Our findings fit neatly with current computational models of eye movement control during reading, wherein successful word identification is a primary determinant of saccade initiation.

  16. Solid polymer electrolyte composite membrane comprising a porous support and a solid polymer electrolyte including a dispersed reduced noble metal or noble metal oxide

    DOEpatents

    Liu, Han; Mittelsteadt, Cortney K; Norman, Timothy J; Griffith, Arthur E; LaConti, Anthony B

    2015-02-24

    A solid polymer electrolyte composite membrane and method of manufacturing the same. According to one embodiment, the composite membrane comprises a thin, rigid, dimensionally-stable, non-electrically-conducting support, the support having a plurality of cylindrical, straight-through pores extending perpendicularly between opposing top and bottom surfaces of the support. The pores are unevenly distributed, with some or no pores located along the periphery and more pores located centrally. The pores are completely filled with a solid polymer electrolyte, the solid polymer electrolyte including a dispersed reduced noble metal or noble metal oxide. The solid polymer electrolyte may also be deposited over the top and/or bottom surfaces of the support.

  17. To provide for insurance reform (including health insurance reform), amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to reform Medicare Advantage and reduce disparities in the Medicare Program, regulate the importation of prescription drugs, and for other purposes.

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Rep. Berry, Marion [D-AR-1

    2010-03-10

    04/26/2010 Referred to the Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law. (All Actions) Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  18. Competitive Intelligence and Social Advantage.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davenport, Elisabeth; Cronin, Blaise

    1994-01-01

    Presents an overview of issues concerning civilian competitive intelligence (CI). Topics discussed include competitive advantage in academic and research environments; public domain information and libraries; covert and overt competitive intelligence; data diversity; use of the Internet; cooperative intelligence; and implications for library and…

  19. Selective advantage for sexual reproduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tannenbaum, Emmanuel

    2006-03-01

    We develop a simplified model for sexual replication within the quasispecies formalism. We assume that the genomes of the replicating organisms are two-chromosomed and diploid, and that the fitness is determined by the number of chromosomes that are identical to a given master sequence. We also assume that there is a cost to sexual replication, given by a characteristic time τseek during which haploid cells seek out a mate with which to recombine. If the mating strategy is such that only viable haploids can mate, then when τseek= 0 , it is possible to show that sexual replication will always outcompete asexual replication. However, as τseek increases, sexual replication only becomes advantageous at progressively higher mutation rates. Once the time cost for sex reaches a critical threshold, the selective advantage for sexual replication disappears entirely. The results of this talk suggest that sexual replication is not advantageous in small populations per se, but rather in populations with low replication rates. In this regime, the cost for sex is sufficiently low that the selective advantage obtained through recombination leads to the dominance of the strategy. In fact, at a given replication rate and for a fixed environment volume, sexual replication is selected for in high populations because of the reduced time spent finding a reproductive partner.

  20. Selective advantage for sexual reproduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tannenbaum, Emmanuel

    2006-06-01

    This paper develops a simplified model for sexual reproduction within the quasispecies formalism. The model assumes a diploid genome consisting of two chromosomes, where the fitness is determined by the number of chromosomes that are identical to a given master sequence. We also assume that there is a cost to sexual reproduction, given by a characteristic time τseek during which haploid cells seek out a mate with which to recombine. If the mating strategy is such that only viable haploids can mate, then when τseek=0 , it is possible to show that sexual reproduction will always out compete asexual reproduction. However, as τseek increases, sexual reproduction only becomes advantageous at progressively higher mutation rates. Once the time cost for sex reaches a critical threshold, the selective advantage for sexual reproduction disappears entirely. The results of this paper suggest that sexual reproduction is not advantageous in small populations per se, but rather in populations with low replication rates. In this regime, the cost for sex is sufficiently low that the selective advantage obtained through recombination leads to the dominance of the strategy. In fact, at a given replication rate and for a fixed environment volume, sexual reproduction is selected for in high populations because of the reduced time spent finding a reproductive partner.

  1. The Certification Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foster, John C.; Pritz, Sandra G.

    2006-01-01

    Certificates have become an important career credential and can give students an advantage when they enter the workplace. However, many types of certificates exist, and the number of people seeking them and organizations offering them are both growing rapidly. In a time of such growth, the authors review some of the basics about certification--the…

  2. Advantages of Team Teaching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frey, John

    1973-01-01

    Describes a high school biology program which successfully utilizes team teaching. Outlines the advantages of team teaching and how it is used in the large group lecture-discussion situation, with small groups in the laboratory and on field trips. (JR)

  3. An exploratory randomised controlled trial of a premises-level intervention to reduce alcohol-related harm including violence in the United Kingdom

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background To assess the feasibility of a randomised controlled trial of a licensed premises intervention to reduce severe intoxication and disorder; to establish effect sizes and identify appropriate approaches to the development and maintenance of a rigorous research design and intervention implementation. Methods An exploratory two-armed parallel randomised controlled trial with a nested process evaluation. An audit of risk factors and a tailored action plan for high risk premises, with three month follow up audit and feedback. Thirty-two premises that had experienced at least one assault in the year prior to the intervention were recruited, match paired and randomly allocated to control or intervention group. Police violence data and data from a street survey of study premises’ customers, including measures of breath alcohol concentration and surveyor rated customer intoxication, were used to assess effect sizes for a future definitive trial. A nested process evaluation explored implementation barriers and the fidelity of the intervention with key stakeholders and senior staff in intervention premises using semi-structured interviews. Results The process evaluation indicated implementation barriers and low fidelity, with a reluctance to implement the intervention and to submit to a formal risk audit. Power calculations suggest the intervention effect on violence and subjective intoxication would be raised to significance with a study size of 517 premises. Conclusions It is methodologically feasible to conduct randomised controlled trials where licensed premises are the unit of allocation. However, lack of enthusiasm in senior premises staff indicates the need for intervention enforcement, rather than voluntary agreements, and on-going strategies to promote sustainability. Trial registration UKCRN 7090; ISRCTN: 80875696 PMID:22676069

  4. Transnasal endoscopy: Technical considerations, advantages and limitations.

    PubMed

    Atar, Mustafa; Kadayifci, Abdurrahman

    2014-02-16

    Transnasal endoscopy (TNE) is an upper endoscopy method which is performed by the nasal route using a thin endoscope less than 6 mm in diameter. The primary goal of this method is to improve patient tolerance and convenience of the procedure. TNE can be performed without sedation and thus eliminates the risks associated with general anesthesia. In this way, TNE decreases the cost and total duration of endoscopic procedures, while maintaining the image quality of standard caliber endoscopes, providing good results for diagnostic purposes. However, the small working channel of the ultra-thin endoscope used for TNE makes it difficult to use for therapeutic procedures except in certain conditions which require a thinner endoscope. Biopsy is possible with special forceps less than 2 mm in diameter. Recently, TNE has been used for screening endoscopy in Far East Asia, including Japan. In most controlled studies, TNE was found to have better patient tolerance when compared to unsedated endoscopy. Nasal pain is the most significant symptom associated with endoscopic procedures but can be reduced with nasal pretreatment. Despite the potential advantage of TNE, it is not common in Western countries, usually due to a lack of training in the technique and a lack of awareness of its potential advantages. This paper briefly reviews the technical considerations as well as the potential advantages and limitations of TNE with ultra-thin scopes.

  5. Creating corporate advantage.

    PubMed

    Collis, D J; Montgomery, C A

    1998-01-01

    What differentiates truly great corporate strategies from the merely adequate? How can executives at the corporate level create tangible advantage for their businesses that makes the whole more than the sum of the parts? This article presents a comprehensive framework for value creation in the multibusiness company. It addresses the most fundamental questions of corporate strategy: What businesses should a company be in? How should it coordinate activities across businesses? What role should the corporate office play? How should the corporation measure and control performance? Through detailed case studies of Tyco International, Sharp, the Newell Company, and Saatchi and Saatchi, the authors demonstrate that the answers to all those questions are driven largely by the nature of a company's special resources--its assets, skills, and capabilities. These range along a continuum from the highly specialized at one end to the very general at the other. A corporation's location on the continuum constrains the set of businesses it should compete in and limits its choices about the design of its organization. Applying the framework, the authors point out the common mistakes that result from misaligned corporate strategies. Companies mistakenly enter businesses based on similarities in products rather than the resources that contribute to competitive advantage in each business. Instead of tailoring organizational structures and systems to the needs of a particular strategy, they create plain-vanilla corporate offices and infrastructures. The company examples demonstrate that one size does not fit all. One can find great corporate strategies all along the continuum.

  6. Creating corporate advantage.

    PubMed

    Collis, D J; Montgomery, C A

    1998-01-01

    What differentiates truly great corporate strategies from the merely adequate? How can executives at the corporate level create tangible advantage for their businesses that makes the whole more than the sum of the parts? This article presents a comprehensive framework for value creation in the multibusiness company. It addresses the most fundamental questions of corporate strategy: What businesses should a company be in? How should it coordinate activities across businesses? What role should the corporate office play? How should the corporation measure and control performance? Through detailed case studies of Tyco International, Sharp, the Newell Company, and Saatchi and Saatchi, the authors demonstrate that the answers to all those questions are driven largely by the nature of a company's special resources--its assets, skills, and capabilities. These range along a continuum from the highly specialized at one end to the very general at the other. A corporation's location on the continuum constrains the set of businesses it should compete in and limits its choices about the design of its organization. Applying the framework, the authors point out the common mistakes that result from misaligned corporate strategies. Companies mistakenly enter businesses based on similarities in products rather than the resources that contribute to competitive advantage in each business. Instead of tailoring organizational structures and systems to the needs of a particular strategy, they create plain-vanilla corporate offices and infrastructures. The company examples demonstrate that one size does not fit all. One can find great corporate strategies all along the continuum. PMID:10179655

  7. Separating semiconductor devices from substrate by etching graded composition release layer disposed between semiconductor devices and substrate including forming protuberances that reduce stiction

    SciTech Connect

    Tauke-Pedretti, Anna; Nielson, Gregory N; Cederberg, Jeffrey G; Cruz-Campa, Jose Luis

    2015-05-12

    A method includes etching a release layer that is coupled between a plurality of semiconductor devices and a substrate with an etch. The etching includes etching the release layer between the semiconductor devices and the substrate until the semiconductor devices are at least substantially released from the substrate. The etching also includes etching a protuberance in the release layer between each of the semiconductor devices and the substrate. The etch is stopped while the protuberances remain between each of the semiconductor devices and the substrate. The method also includes separating the semiconductor devices from the substrate. Other methods and apparatus are also disclosed.

  8. Reducing gas generators and methods for generating a reducing gas

    SciTech Connect

    Scotto, Mark Vincent; Perna, Mark Anthony

    2015-11-03

    One embodiment of the present invention is a unique reducing gas generator. Another embodiment is a unique method for generating a reducing gas. Other embodiments include apparatuses, systems, devices, hardware, methods, and combinations for generating reducing gas. Further embodiments, forms, features, aspects, benefits, and advantages of the present application will become apparent from the description and figures provided herewith.

  9. Efficacy of humidity retention bags for the reduced adsorption and improved cleaning of tissue proteins including prion-associated amyloid to surgical stainless steel surfaces.

    PubMed

    Secker, T J; Pinchin, H E; Hervé, R C; Keevil, C W

    2015-01-01

    Increasing drying time adversely affects attachment of tissue proteins and prion-associated amyloid to surgical stainless steel, and reduces the efficacy of commercial cleaning chemistries. This study tested the efficacy of commercial humidity retention bags to reduce biofouling on surgical stainless steel and to improve subsequent cleaning. Surgical stainless steel surfaces were contaminated with ME7-infected brain homogenates and left to dry for 15 to 1,440 min either in air, in dry polythene bags or within humidity retention bags. Residual contamination pre/post cleaning was analysed using Thioflavin T/SYPRO Ruby dual staining and microscope analysis. An increase in biofouling was observed with increased drying time in air or in sealed dry bags. Humidity retention bags kept both protein and prion-associated amyloid minimal across the drying times both pre- and post-cleaning. Therefore, humidity bags demonstrate a cheap, easy to implement solution to improve surgical instrument reprocessing and to potentially reduce associated hospital acquired infections.

  10. A possible heterozygous advantage in muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Emery, A E H

    2016-01-01

    In certain autosomal recessive disorders there is suggestive evidence that heterozygous carriers may have some selective advantage over normal homozygotes. These include, for example, cystic fibrosis, Tay-Sachs disease and phenylketonuria. The best example so far, however, is that of significant heterozygous advantage in sickle-cell anaemia with increased resistance to falciparum malaria. PMID:27245530

  11. A dietary pattern including nopal, chia seed, soy protein, and oat reduces serum triglycerides and glucose intolerance in patients with metabolic syndrome.

    PubMed

    Guevara-Cruz, Martha; Tovar, Armando R; Aguilar-Salinas, Carlos A; Medina-Vera, Isabel; Gil-Zenteno, Lidia; Hernández-Viveros, Isaac; López-Romero, Patricia; Ordaz-Nava, Guillermo; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Guillen Pineda, Luz E; Torres, Nimbe

    2012-01-01

    Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a health problem throughout the world and is associated with cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Thus, the purpose of the present work was to evaluate the effects of a dietary pattern (DP; soy protein, nopal, chia seed, and oat) on the biochemical variables of MetS, the AUC for glucose and insulin, glucose intolerance (GI), the relationship of the presence of certain polymorphisms related to MetS, and the response to the DP. In this randomized trial, the participants consumed their habitual diet but reduced by 500 kcal for 2 wk. They were then assigned to the placebo (P; n = 35) or DP (n = 32) group and consumed the reduced energy diet plus the P or DP beverage (235 kcal) minus the energy provided by these for 2 mo. All participants had decreases in body weight (BW), BMI, and waist circumference during the 2-mo treatment (P < 0.0001); however, only the DP group had decreases in serum TG, C-reactive protein (CRP), and AUC for insulin and GI after a glucose tolerance test. Interestingly, participants in the DP group with MetS and the ABCA1 R230C variant had a greater decrease in BW and an increase in serum adiponectin concentration after 2 mo of dietary treatment than those with the ABCA1 R230R variant. The results from this study suggest that lifestyle interventions involving specific DP for the treatment of MetS could be more effective if local foods and genetic variations of the population are considered. PMID:22090467

  12. A dietary pattern including nopal, chia seed, soy protein, and oat reduces serum triglycerides and glucose intolerance in patients with metabolic syndrome.

    PubMed

    Guevara-Cruz, Martha; Tovar, Armando R; Aguilar-Salinas, Carlos A; Medina-Vera, Isabel; Gil-Zenteno, Lidia; Hernández-Viveros, Isaac; López-Romero, Patricia; Ordaz-Nava, Guillermo; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Guillen Pineda, Luz E; Torres, Nimbe

    2012-01-01

    Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a health problem throughout the world and is associated with cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Thus, the purpose of the present work was to evaluate the effects of a dietary pattern (DP; soy protein, nopal, chia seed, and oat) on the biochemical variables of MetS, the AUC for glucose and insulin, glucose intolerance (GI), the relationship of the presence of certain polymorphisms related to MetS, and the response to the DP. In this randomized trial, the participants consumed their habitual diet but reduced by 500 kcal for 2 wk. They were then assigned to the placebo (P; n = 35) or DP (n = 32) group and consumed the reduced energy diet plus the P or DP beverage (235 kcal) minus the energy provided by these for 2 mo. All participants had decreases in body weight (BW), BMI, and waist circumference during the 2-mo treatment (P < 0.0001); however, only the DP group had decreases in serum TG, C-reactive protein (CRP), and AUC for insulin and GI after a glucose tolerance test. Interestingly, participants in the DP group with MetS and the ABCA1 R230C variant had a greater decrease in BW and an increase in serum adiponectin concentration after 2 mo of dietary treatment than those with the ABCA1 R230R variant. The results from this study suggest that lifestyle interventions involving specific DP for the treatment of MetS could be more effective if local foods and genetic variations of the population are considered.

  13. Small fenestra stapedectomy: technique and advantages.

    PubMed

    Pappas, J J; Bailey, H A; Graham, S S

    1984-11-01

    We discuss the rationale and advantages of the small fenestra technique (SFT) of stapedectomy. When results from conventional stapedectomy techniques are compared with those of SFT, the small fenestra technique shows improved hearing in the high frequencies of 2,000, 4,000, and 8,000 Hz, improved speech discrimination, reduced vestibular disturbance, and reduced iatrogenic trauma to the cochlea.

  14. Altered bone material properties in HLA-B27 rats include reduced mineral to matrix ratio and altered collagen cross-links.

    PubMed

    Gamsjaeger, Sonja; Srivastava, Apurva K; Wergedal, Jon E; Zwerina, Jochen; Klaushofer, Klaus; Paschalis, Eleftherios P; Tatakis, Dimitris N

    2014-11-01

    Spondyloarthropathy and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which includes ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease, are often associated with severe osteopenia/osteoporosis in both children and adults. HLA-B27 transgenic rats present a phenotype that includes severe colitis and severely accelerated alveolar bone loss. The purpose of this study was to evaluate long bone density status, systemic bone metabolic markers, and intrinsic bone material properties in HLA-B27 transgenic (TG) rats, and compare them with those of age- and sex-matched wild-type (WT) animals. The results indicate that in the HLA-B27 rat, an animal susceptible to both alveolar bone loss (ABL) and long bone osteopenia, there is a statistically significant negative correlation between ABL and long bone bone mineral density (BMD), as well as mineral/matrix ratio at active bone-forming trabecular surfaces. The TG animals had a lower mineral/matrix ratio and higher relative proteoglycan and advanced glycation end product (ϵ-N-Carboxymethyl-L-lysine) content and pyridinoline/divalent collagen cross-link ratio compared with WT. These results may provide better understanding of the interrelationship between osteoporosis and oral bone loss, the underlying causes of the inferior bone strength in the HLA-B27 transgenic animals, and could prove to be a useful model in the elucidation of the pathophysiology of spondyloarthropathy and IBD-associated osteopenia/osteoporosis and in the evaluation of pharmacological intervention(s) against such conditions. PMID:24771481

  15. [Advantages of fixed combinations].

    PubMed

    Lachkar, Y

    2008-07-01

    Fixed combinations are indicated in the treatment of glaucoma and ocular hypertension when monotherapy does not sufficiently reduce IOP. Fixed combinations show better efficacy than the instillation of each separate component and are at least equivalent to the administration of both components in a separate association. They simplify treatment, increase compliance and quality of life, and decrease exposure to preservatives. Although they are less aggressive for patients when a new drug needs to be added, the use of fixed combinations should not decrease the follow-up. PMID:18957922

  16. Blogging to My Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stock, Mark

    2006-01-01

    In this article, the author discusses blogging and its benefits. Blog is shorthand for weblog, which is a series of items posted on the Internet for others to read. It usually includes text, images, and links to other websites. Blogs provide a running commentary or conversation. Although many people use blogs as online journals, detailing the…

  17. Reduced genetic variation occurs among genes of the highly clonal plant pathogen Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. vesicatoria, including the effector gene avrBs2.

    PubMed

    Wichmann, Gale; Ritchie, David; Kousik, C S; Bergelson, Joy

    2005-05-01

    The bacterial plant pathogen Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. vesicatoria, also known as Xanthomonas campestris pv. vesicatoria group A, is the causal agent of bacterial spot in pepper and tomato. In order to test different models that may explain the coevolution of avrBs2 with its host plants, we sequenced avrBs2 and six chromosomal loci (total of 5.5 kb per strain) from a global sample of 55 X. axonopodis pv. vesicatoria strains collected from diseased peppers. We found an extreme lack of genetic variation among all X. axonopodis pv. vesicatoria genomic loci (average nucleotide diversity, pi = 9.1 x 10(-5)), including avrBs2. This lack of diversity is consistent with X. axonopodis pv. vesicatoria having undergone a recent population bottleneck and/or selective sweep followed by population expansion. Coalescent analysis determined that approximately 1.4 x 10(4) to 7.16 x 10(4) bacterial generations have passed since the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) of the current X. axonopodis pv. vesicatoria population. Assuming a range of 50 to 500 bacterial generations per year, only 28 to 1,432 years have passed since the MRCA. This time frame coincides with human intervention with the pathogen's host plants, from domestication to modern agricultural practices. Examination of 19 mutated (loss-of-function) avrBs2 alleles detected nine classes of mutations. All mutations affected protein coding, while no synonymous changes were found. The nature of at least one of the avrBs2 mutations suggests that it may be possible to observe one stage of an evolutionary arms race as X. axonopodis pv. vesicatoria responds to selection pressure to alter avrBs2 to escape host plant resistance. PMID:15870329

  18. Reduced NODAL signaling strength via mutation of several pathway members including FOXH1 is linked to human heart defects and holoprosencephaly.

    PubMed

    Roessler, Erich; Ouspenskaia, Maia V; Karkera, Jayaprakash D; Vélez, Jorge I; Kantipong, Amy; Lacbawan, Felicitas; Bowers, Peter; Belmont, John W; Towbin, Jeffrey A; Goldmuntz, Elizabeth; Feldman, Benjamin; Muenke, Maximilian

    2008-07-01

    Abnormalities of embryonic patterning are hypothesized to underlie many common congenital malformations in humans including congenital heart defects (CHDs), left-right disturbances (L-R) or laterality, and holoprosencephaly (HPE). Studies in model organisms suggest that Nodal-like factors provide instructions for key aspects of body axis and germ layer patterning; however, the complex genetics of pathogenic gene variant(s) in humans are poorly understood. Here we report our studies of FOXH1, CFC1, and SMAD2 and summarize our mutational analysis of three additional components in the human NODAL-signaling pathway: NODAL, GDF1, and TDGF1. We identify functionally abnormal gene products throughout the pathway that are clearly associated with CHD, laterality, and HPE. Abnormal gene products are most commonly detected in patients within a narrow spectrum of isolated conotruncal heart defects (minimum 5%-10% of subjects), and far less commonly in isolated laterality or HPE patients (approximately 1% for each). The difference in the mutation incidence between these groups is highly significant. We show that apparent gene dosage discrepancies between humans and model organisms can be reconciled by considering a broader combination of sequence variants. Our studies confirm that (1) the genetic vulnerabilities inferred from model organisms with defects in Nodal signaling are indeed analogous to humans; (2) the molecular analysis of an entire signaling pathway is more complete and robust than that of individual genes and presages future studies by whole-genome analysis; and (3) a functional genomics approach is essential to fully appreciate the complex genetic interactions necessary to produce these effects in humans.

  19. The SSRIs: advantages, disadvantages and differences.

    PubMed

    Lane, R; Baldwin, D; Preskorn, S

    1995-01-01

    The highly specific mechanism of action of the selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) confers advantages on this group, relative to other classes of antidepressant, and thus represents a significant advance in the pharmacotherapy of depression. Whilst their clinical efficacy is equivalent to that of the tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs), the SSRIs have a greatly reduced risk of toxicity in overdose and have been shown to be significantly better tolerated. Specifically, the SSRIs have a low incidence of anticholinergic effects and are essentially devoid of cardiotoxicity. This tolerability advantage may be of significance in improving compliance and hence cost-effectiveness of treatment, particularly in the long term. Despite a lack of sedative effect, there is evidence that SSRIs are more effective than TCAs in the treatment of depression with anxiety. In addition, the SSRIs have been shown to be effective in obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder and social phobia. Although superior efficacy has not been demonstrated for any one of the SSRIs, the structural diversity of this group is reflected in emerging qualitative and quantitative differences in side effects and drug interaction potential. Many of these differential features reflect important variations in pharmacological and pharmacokinetic profiles, including dosage flexibility, washout times, dose-plasma level proportionality and age-related changes in plasma levels. Fluoxetine, for example, has a considerably longer half-life than other SSRIs and side effects and drug interactions may thus occur for an extended period following discontinuation of treatment. Significant differences in the potential for drug interactions in this group are related to their relative potency for inhibition of important liver drug-metabolising enzymes including CYPIID6, CYPIA2 and CYPIIIA4. Large comparative clinical trials of the different SSRIs have yet to be undertaken; however, the differences that have

  20. Home advantage in professional tennis.

    PubMed

    Koning, Ruud H

    2011-01-01

    Home advantage is a pervasive phenomenon in sport. It has been established in team sports such as basketball, baseball, American football, and European soccer. Attention to home advantage in individual sports has so far been limited. The aim of this study was to examine home advantage in professional tennis. Match-level data are used to measure home advantage. The test used is based on logit models, and consistent specification is addressed explicitly. Depending on the interpretation of home advantage, restrictions on the specification of the model need to be imposed. We find that although significant home advantage exists for men, the performance of women tennis players appears to be unaffected by home advantage.

  1. The Oilheat Manufacturers Associations Oilheat Advantages Project

    SciTech Connect

    Hedden, R.; Bately, J.E.

    1995-04-01

    The Oilheat Advantages Project is the Oilheat Manufacturers Association`s first project. It involves the creation and disseminaiton of the unified, well documented, compellingly packaged oilheat story. The project invovles three steps: the first step is to pull together all the existing data on the advantages of oilheat into a single, well documented engineering report. The second step will be to rewrite and package the technical document into a consumer piece and a scripted presentation supported with overheads, and to disseminate the information throughout the industry. The third step will be to fund new research to update existing information and discover new advantages of oilheat. This step will begin next year. The inforamtion will be packaged in the following formats: The Engineering Document. This will include all the technical information including the creditable third party sources for all the findings on the many advantages of oilheat; the Consumer Booklet. This summarizes all the findings in the Engineering Document in simple language with easy to understand illustrations and graphs; a series of single topic Statement Stuffers on each of the advantages; an Overhead Transparency-Supported Scripted Show that can be used by industry representatives for presentations to the general public, schools, civic groups, and service clubs; and the Periodic publication of updates to the Oilheat Advantages Study.

  2. Tailored logistics: the next advantage.

    PubMed

    Fuller, J B; O'Conor, J; Rawlinson, R

    1993-01-01

    How many top executives have ever visited with managers who move materials from the factory to the store? How many still reduce the costs of logistics to the rent of warehouses and the fees charged by common carriers? To judge by hours of senior management attention, logistics problems do not rank high. But logistics have the potential to become the next governing element of strategy. Whether they know it or not, senior managers of every retail store and diversified manufacturing company compete in logistically distinct businesses. Customer needs vary, and companies can tailor their logistics systems to serve their customers better and more profitably. Companies do not create value for customers and sustainable advantage for themselves merely by offering varieties of goods. Rather, they offer goods in distinct ways. A particular can of Coca-Cola, for example, might be a can of Coca-Cola going to a vending machine, or a can of Coca-Cola that comes with billing services. There is a fortune buried in this distinction. The goal of logistics strategy is building distinct approaches to distinct groups of customers. The first step is organizing a cross-functional team to proceed through the following steps: segmenting customers according to purchase criteria, establishing different standards of service for different customer segments, tailoring logistics pipelines to support each segment, and creating economics of scale to determine which assets can be shared among various pipelines. The goal of establishing logistically distinct businesses is familiar: improved knowledge of customers and improved means of satisfying them.

  3. Tailored logistics: the next advantage.

    PubMed

    Fuller, J B; O'Conor, J; Rawlinson, R

    1993-01-01

    How many top executives have ever visited with managers who move materials from the factory to the store? How many still reduce the costs of logistics to the rent of warehouses and the fees charged by common carriers? To judge by hours of senior management attention, logistics problems do not rank high. But logistics have the potential to become the next governing element of strategy. Whether they know it or not, senior managers of every retail store and diversified manufacturing company compete in logistically distinct businesses. Customer needs vary, and companies can tailor their logistics systems to serve their customers better and more profitably. Companies do not create value for customers and sustainable advantage for themselves merely by offering varieties of goods. Rather, they offer goods in distinct ways. A particular can of Coca-Cola, for example, might be a can of Coca-Cola going to a vending machine, or a can of Coca-Cola that comes with billing services. There is a fortune buried in this distinction. The goal of logistics strategy is building distinct approaches to distinct groups of customers. The first step is organizing a cross-functional team to proceed through the following steps: segmenting customers according to purchase criteria, establishing different standards of service for different customer segments, tailoring logistics pipelines to support each segment, and creating economics of scale to determine which assets can be shared among various pipelines. The goal of establishing logistically distinct businesses is familiar: improved knowledge of customers and improved means of satisfying them. PMID:10126157

  4. Medicare advantage plans at a crossroads--yet again.

    PubMed

    Berenson, Robert A; Dowd, Bryan E

    2009-01-01

    Since risk-taking, private health insurance plans were introduced into Medicare twenty-five years ago, policymakers have disagreed on these plans' fundamental purposes. Articulated objectives, which include improving quality, reducing government spending, providing additional benefits (without expanding the entitlement), increasing choices for beneficiaries, and providing benchmark competition for traditional Medicare, are plausible but sometimes conflicting. The program's history demonstrates continuous shifts in emphasis on these objectives. We enumerate the differing advantages of public and private plans in Medicare and argue that policymakers should focus their efforts on leveling the public-private playing field, thereby dealing forthrightly with the reality of growing fiscal problems.

  5. Creating Competitive Advantage through Effective Management Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Longenecker, Clinton O.; Ariss, Sonny S.

    2002-01-01

    Managers trained in executive education programs (n=203) identified ways in which management education can increase an organization's competitive advantage: exposure to new ideas and practices, skill development, and motivation. Characteristics of effective management education included experience-based learning orientation, credible instructors,…

  6. The Advantages of Using a Network.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCarthy, Robert

    1989-01-01

    Discusses the growth of computer networks in elementary and secondary schools and describes numerous benefits for both instructional and management functions. Topics discussed include ease of use; educational advantages; examples of use in physics, writing, and journalism classes; student records management; cost benefits; and greater efficiency.…

  7. Robustness of the Sequential Lineup Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gronlund, Scott D.; Carlson, Curt A.; Dailey, Sarah B.; Goodsell, Charles A.

    2009-01-01

    A growing movement in the United States and around the world involves promoting the advantages of conducting an eyewitness lineup in a sequential manner. We conducted a large study (N = 2,529) that included 24 comparisons of sequential versus simultaneous lineups. A liberal statistical criterion revealed only 2 significant sequential lineup…

  8. How Successful Is Medicare Advantage?

    PubMed Central

    Newhouse, Joseph P; McGuire, Thomas G

    2014-01-01

    Context Medicare Part C, or Medicare Advantage (MA), now almost 30 years old, has generally been viewed as a policy disappointment. Enrollment has vacillated but has never come close to the penetration of managed care plans in the commercial insurance market or in Medicaid, and because of payment policy decisions and selection, the MA program is viewed as having added to cost rather than saving funds for the Medicare program. Recent changes in Medicare policy, including improved risk adjustment, however, may have changed this picture. Methods This article summarizes findings from our group's work evaluating MA's recent performance and investigating payment options for improving its performance even more. We studied the behavior of both beneficiaries and plans, as well as the effects of Medicare policy. Findings Beneficiaries make “mistakes” in their choice of MA plan options that can be explained by behavioral economics. Few beneficiaries make an active choice after they enroll in Medicare. The high prevalence of “zero-premium” plans signals inefficiency in plan design and in the market's functioning. That is, Medicare premium policies interfere with economically efficient choices. The adverse selection problem, in which healthier, lower-cost beneficiaries tend to join MA, appears much diminished. The available measures, while limited, suggest that, on average, MA plans offer care of equal or higher quality and for less cost than traditional Medicare (TM). In counties, greater MA penetration appears to improve TM's performance. Conclusions Medicare policies regarding lock-in provisions and risk adjustment that were adopted in the mid-2000s have mitigated the adverse selection problem previously plaguing MA. On average, MA plans appear to offer higher value than TM, and positive spillovers from MA into TM imply that reimbursement should not necessarily be neutral. Policy changes in Medicare that reform the way that beneficiaries are charged for MA plan

  9. Did Babe Ruth Have a Comparative Advantage as a Pitcher?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scahill, Edward M.

    1990-01-01

    Advocates using baseball statistics to illustrate the advantages of specialization in production. Using Babe Ruth's record as an analogy, suggests a methodology for determining a player's comparative advantage as a teaching illustration. Includes the team's statistical profile in five tables to explain comparative advantage and profit maximizing.…

  10. Home advantage in Greek football.

    PubMed

    Armatas, Vasilis; Pollard, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Home advantage as it relates to team performance at football was examined in Superleague Greece using nine seasons of game-by-game performance data, a total of 2160 matches. After adjusting for team ability and annual fluctuations in home advantage, there were significant differences between teams. Previous findings regarding the role of territorial protection were strengthened by the fact that home advantage was above average for the team from Xanthi (P =0.015), while lower for teams from the capital city Athens (P =0.008). There were differences between home and away teams in the incidence of most of the 13 within-game match variables, but associated effect sizes were only moderate. In contrast, outcome ratios derived from these variables, and measuring shot success, had negligible effect sizes. This supported a previous finding that home and away teams differed in the incidence of on-the-ball behaviours, but not in their outcomes. By far the most important predictor of home advantage, as measured by goal difference, was the difference between home and away teams in terms of kicked shots from inside the penalty area. Other types of shots had little effect on the final score. The absence of a running track between spectators and the playing field was also a significant predictor of goal difference, worth an average of 0.102 goals per game to the home team. Travel distance did not affect home advantage.

  11. Home advantage in Greek football.

    PubMed

    Armatas, Vasilis; Pollard, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Home advantage as it relates to team performance at football was examined in Superleague Greece using nine seasons of game-by-game performance data, a total of 2160 matches. After adjusting for team ability and annual fluctuations in home advantage, there were significant differences between teams. Previous findings regarding the role of territorial protection were strengthened by the fact that home advantage was above average for the team from Xanthi (P =0.015), while lower for teams from the capital city Athens (P =0.008). There were differences between home and away teams in the incidence of most of the 13 within-game match variables, but associated effect sizes were only moderate. In contrast, outcome ratios derived from these variables, and measuring shot success, had negligible effect sizes. This supported a previous finding that home and away teams differed in the incidence of on-the-ball behaviours, but not in their outcomes. By far the most important predictor of home advantage, as measured by goal difference, was the difference between home and away teams in terms of kicked shots from inside the penalty area. Other types of shots had little effect on the final score. The absence of a running track between spectators and the playing field was also a significant predictor of goal difference, worth an average of 0.102 goals per game to the home team. Travel distance did not affect home advantage. PMID:24533517

  12. Advantages of proteins being disordered

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhirong; Huang, Yongqi

    2014-01-01

    The past decade has witnessed great advances in our understanding of protein structure-function relationships in terms of the ubiquitous existence of intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and intrinsically disordered regions (IDRs). The structural disorder of IDPs/IDRs enables them to play essential functions that are complementary to those of ordered proteins. In addition, IDPs/IDRs are persistent in evolution. Therefore, they are expected to possess some advantages over ordered proteins. In this review, we summarize and survey nine possible advantages of IDPs/IDRs: economizing genome/protein resources, overcoming steric restrictions in binding, achieving high specificity with low affinity, increasing binding rate, facilitating posttranslational modifications, enabling flexible linkers, preventing aggregation, providing resistance to non-native conditions, and allowing compatibility with more available sequences. Some potential advantages of IDPs/IDRs are not well understood and require both experimental and theoretical approaches to decipher. The connection with protein design is also briefly discussed. PMID:24532081

  13. Energy Advantages for Green Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Griffin, J. Tim

    2012-01-01

    Because of many advantages associated with central utility systems, school campuses, from large universities to elementary schools, have used district energy for decades. District energy facilities enable thermal and electric utilities to be generated with greater efficiency and higher system reliability, while requiring fewer maintenance and…

  14. Achieving a sustainable service advantage.

    PubMed

    Coyne, K P

    1993-01-01

    Many managers believe that superior service should play little or no role in competitive strategy; they maintain that service innovations are inherently copiable. However, the author states that this view is too narrow. For a company to achieve a lasting service advantage, it must base a new service on a capability gap that competitors cannot or will not copy.

  15. Information Technology: Tomorrow's Advantage Today.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haag, Stephen; Keen, Peter

    This textbook is designed for a one-semester introductory course in which the goal is to give students a foundation in the basics of information technology (IT). It focuses on how the technology works, issues relating to its use and development, how it can lend personal and business advantages, and how it is creating a globally networked society.…

  16. An Experiment in Comparative Advantage.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haupert, Michael J.

    1996-01-01

    Describes an undergraduate economics course experiment designed to teach the concepts of comparative advantage and opportunity costs. Students have a limited number of labor hours and can chose to produce either wheat or steel. As the project progresses, the students trade commodities in an attempt to maximize use of their labor hours. (MJP)

  17. [Psychological aspects of home advantage].

    PubMed

    Renáta, Valach; Dezso, Németh

    2006-01-01

    It has been shown that home teams supported by their audience win over 50% of the games in sports competitions. Researchers have also been paying increased attention to this topic during the last 10-15 years. Their main goal, in addition to verifying the existence of this phenomenon, was to find explanatory factors which can be associated - at least partly - with the development of home advantage. Our study demonstrates the biological basis of this phenomenon through the connection between the hormone system and territoriality, moreover, it discusses in detail the four possible contributing factors: noise of the supporting audience; familiarity; travel and rules. Latest research has emphasized an evolutionary explanation of home advantage, which, beyond the context of sports competitions, tries to give an answer to the differences found between male and female coping strategies.

  18. Faculty practice: advantages and disadvantages.

    PubMed

    Klooster, J

    1978-10-01

    In considering the advantages and disadvantages of full-time dental faculty members involved in private practice, some suggestions for coping with problems represented by the disadvantages have been cited. Faculty members may find a more satisfactory climate for the patient service aspect of their professional activity in a system where several options are made available from which a teacher may select his preferred office environment and practice style.

  19. Establishing a competitive advantage through quality management.

    PubMed

    George, R J

    1996-06-01

    The successful dentist of the future will establish a sustainable competitive advantage in the marketplace by recognising that patients undergoing dental treatment cannot see the result before purchase, and that they therefore look for signs of service quality to reduce uncertainty. Thus the successful dentist will implement a quality programme that recognises not only that quality is defined by meeting patients' needs and expectations, but also that quality service is fundamental to successful business strategy. Finally, the successful dentist of the future will realise that the pursuit of quality is a never-ending process which requires leadership by example.

  20. March 2013: Medicare Advantage update.

    PubMed

    Sayavong, Sarah; Kemper, Leah; Barker, Abigail; McBride, Timothy

    2013-09-01

    Key Data Findings. (1) From March 2012 to March 2013, rural enrollment in Medicare Advantage (MA) and other prepaid plans increased by over 200,000 enrollees, to more than 1.9 million. (2) Preferred provider organization (PPO) plan enrollment increased to nearly one million enrollees, accounting for more than 51% of the rural MA market (up from 48% in March 2012). (3) Health maintenance organization (HMO) enrollment continued to grow in 2013, with over 31% of the rural MA market, while private fee-for-service (PFFS) plan enrollment decreased to less than 10% of market share. (4) Despite recent changes to MA payment, rural MA enrollment continues to increase.

  1. Were there evolutionary advantages to premenstrual syndrome?

    PubMed

    Gillings, Michael R

    2014-09-01

    Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) affects up to 80% of women, often leading to significant personal, social and economic costs. When apparently maladaptive states are widespread, they sometimes confer a hidden advantage, or did so in our evolutionary past. We suggest that PMS had a selective advantage because it increased the chance that infertile pair bonds would dissolve, thus improving the reproductive outcomes of women in such partnerships. We confirm predictions arising from the hypothesis: PMS has high heritability; gene variants associated with PMS can be identified; animosity exhibited during PMS is preferentially directed at current partners; and behaviours exhibited during PMS may increase the chance of finding a new partner. Under this view, the prevalence of PMS might result from genes and behaviours that are adaptive in some societies, but are potentially less appropriate in modern cultures. Understanding this evolutionary mismatch might help depathologize PMS, and suggests solutions, including the choice to use cycle-stopping contraception.

  2. Were there evolutionary advantages to premenstrual syndrome?

    PubMed Central

    Gillings, Michael R

    2014-01-01

    Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) affects up to 80% of women, often leading to significant personal, social and economic costs. When apparently maladaptive states are widespread, they sometimes confer a hidden advantage, or did so in our evolutionary past. We suggest that PMS had a selective advantage because it increased the chance that infertile pair bonds would dissolve, thus improving the reproductive outcomes of women in such partnerships. We confirm predictions arising from the hypothesis: PMS has high heritability; gene variants associated with PMS can be identified; animosity exhibited during PMS is preferentially directed at current partners; and behaviours exhibited during PMS may increase the chance of finding a new partner. Under this view, the prevalence of PMS might result from genes and behaviours that are adaptive in some societies, but are potentially less appropriate in modern cultures. Understanding this evolutionary mismatch might help depathologize PMS, and suggests solutions, including the choice to use cycle-stopping contraception. PMID:25469168

  3. [Internet research methods: advantages and challenges].

    PubMed

    Liu, Yi; Tien, Yueh-Hsuan

    2009-12-01

    Compared to traditional research methods, using the Internet to conduct research offers a number of advantages to the researcher, which include increased access to sensitive issues and vulnerable / hidden populations; decreased data entry time requirements; and enhanced data accuracy. However, Internet research also presents certain challenges to the researcher. In this article, the advantages and challenges of Internet research methods are discussed in four principle issue areas: (a) recruitment, (b) data quality, (c) practicality, and (d) ethics. Nursing researchers can overcome problems related to sampling bias and data truthfulness using creative methods; resolve technical problems through collaboration with other disciplines; and protect participant's privacy, confidentiality and data security by maintaining a high level of vigilance. Once such issues have been satisfactorily addressed, the Internet should open a new window for Taiwan nursing research.

  4. Evolutionary advantages of adaptive rewarding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szolnoki, Attila; Perc, Matjaž

    2012-09-01

    Our well-being depends on both our personal success and the success of our society. The realization of this fact makes cooperation an essential trait. Experiments have shown that rewards can elevate our readiness to cooperate, but since giving a reward inevitably entails paying a cost for it, the emergence and stability of such behavior remains elusive. Here we show that allowing for the act of rewarding to self-organize in dependence on the success of cooperation creates several evolutionary advantages that instill new ways through which collaborative efforts are promoted. Ranging from indirect territorial battle to the spontaneous emergence and destruction of coexistence, phase diagrams and the underlying spatial patterns reveal fascinatingly rich social dynamics that explain why this costly behavior has evolved and persevered. Comparisons with adaptive punishment, however, uncover an Achilles heel of adaptive rewarding, coming from over-aggression, which in turn hinders optimal utilization of network reciprocity. This may explain why, despite its success, rewarding is not as firmly embedded into our societal organization as punishment.

  5. Advantages and Uses of AMTEC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lodhi, M. A. K.

    2012-10-01

    Static conversion systems are gaining importance in recent times because of newer applications of electricity like in spacecraft, hybrid-electric vehicles, military uses and domestic purposes. Of the many new static energy conversion systems that are being considered, one is the Alkali Metal Thermal Electric Converter (AMTEC). It is a thermally regenerative, electrochemical device for the direct conversion of heat to electrical power. As the name suggests, this system uses an alkali metal in its process. The electrochemical process involved in the working of AMTEC is ionization of alkali metal atoms at the interface of electrode and electrolyte. The electrons produced as a result flow through the external load thus doing work, and finally recombine with the metal ions at the cathode. AMTECs convert the work done during the nearly isothermal expansion of metal vapor to produce a high current and low voltage electron flow. Due to its principle of working it has many inherent advantages over other conventional generators. These will be discussed briefly.

  6. Home advantage in the Australian Football League.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Stephen R

    2005-04-01

    The results of this study on home advantage in Australian rules football demonstrate that individual clubs have different home advantages. Traditional measures of home advantage as applied to whole competitions such as percentage of games won, and alternative measures such as average margin of victory for the home team, are calculated. Problems with these measures are discussed. Individual home advantages for each team are obtained using a linear model fitted to individual match margins; the resultant home advantages are analysed, and variations and possible causes or groupings of home advantage are proposed. It is shown that some models allowing different home advantages for different clubs are a significant improvement over previous models assuming a common home advantage. The results show a strong isolation effect, with non-Victorian teams having large home advantages, and lend support to the conclusion that crowd effects and ground familiarity are a major determinant of home advantage.

  7. An energy-reduced dietary pattern, including moderate protein and increased nonfat dairy intake combined with walking promotes beneficial body composition and metabolic changes in women with excess adiposity: a randomized comparative trial

    PubMed Central

    Shlisky, Julie D; Durward, Carrie M; Zack, Melissa K; Gugger, Carolyn K; Campbell, Jessica K; Nickols-Richardson, Sharon M

    2015-01-01

    Moderate protein and nonfat dairy intake within an energy-reduced diet (ERD) may contribute to health benefits achieved with body weight (BW) loss. The current study examined the effectiveness of a weight-loss/weight-loss maintenance intervention using an ERD with moderate dietary protein (30% of kcals) and increased nonfat dairy intake (4–5 svg/d), including yogurt (INT group) and daily walking compared to an ERD with standard protein (16–17% of kcals) and standard nonfat dairy intake (3 svg/d) (COM group) with daily walking. A randomized comparative trial with 104 healthy premenopausal women with overweight/obesity was conducted in a university setting. Women were randomized to INT group or COM group. Anthropometric measurements, as well as dietary intake, selected vital signs, resting energy expenditure, blood lipids, glucose, insulin, and selected adipose-derived hormones were measured at baseline, and weeks 2, 12, and 24. Targets for dietary protein and nonfat dairy intake, while initially achieved, were not sustained in the INT group. There were no significant effects of diet group on anthropometric measurements. Women in the INT group and COM group, respectively, reduced BW (−4.9 ± 3.2 and −4.3 ± 3.3 kg, P < 0.001) and fat mass (−3.0 ± 2.2 and −2.3 ± 2.3 kg, P < 0.001) during the 12-week weight-loss phase and maintained these losses at 24 weeks. Both groups experienced significant decreases in body mass index, fat-free soft tissue mass, body fat percentage, waist and hip circumferences and serum triglycerides, total cholesterol, and leptin (all P < 0.001). Healthy premenopausal women with excess adiposity effectively lost BW and fat mass and improved some metabolic risk factors following an ERD with approximately 20% protein and 3 svg/d of nonfat dairy intake. PMID:26405524

  8. Rural Medicare Advantage Plan Payment in 2015.

    PubMed

    Kemper, Leah; Barker, Abigail R; McBride, Timothy D; Mueller, Keith

    2015-12-01

    Payment to Medicare Advantage (MA) plans was fundamentally altered in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA). MA plans now operate under a new formula for county-level payment area benchmarks, and in 2012 began receiving quality-based bonus payments. The Medicare Advantage Quality Bonus Payment Demonstration expanded the bonus payments to most MA plans through 2014; however, with the end of the demonstration bonus payments has been reduced for intermediate quality MA plans. This brief examines the impact that these changes in MA baseline payment are having on MA plans and beneficiaries in rural and urban areas. Key Data Findings. (1) Payments to plans in rural areas were 3.9 percent smaller under ACA payment policies in 2015 than they would have been in the absence of the ACA. For plans in urban areas, the payments were 8.8 percent smaller than they would have been. These figures were determined using hypothetical pre-ACA and actual ACA-mandated benchmarks for 2015. (2) MA plans in rural areas received an average annual bonus payment of $326.77 per enrollee in 2014, but only $63.76 per enrollee in 2015, with the conclusion of the demonstration. (3) In 2014, 92 percent of rural MA beneficiaries were in a plan that received quality-based bonus payments under the demonstration, while in March 2015, 56 percent of rural MA beneficiaries were in a plan that was eligible for quality-based bonus payments.

  9. Advantage, Absence of Advantage, and Disadvantage Among Scientists and Engineers

    SciTech Connect

    Nancy DiTomaso

    2008-09-23

    DiTomaso talks about survey data on the career experiences of 3,200 scientists and engineers from 24 major companies. Her survey findings indicate that most people who do well in their careers and make significant contributions to their organizations get assistance from others in their workplace in many forms, including offering opportunities such as good projects, providing resources that make good performance more likely, and opening up networking possibilities.

  10. 2015: Rural Medicare Advantage Enrollment Update.

    PubMed

    Finegan, Chance; Ullrich, Fred; Mueller, Keith

    2015-07-01

    Key Findings. (1) Rural enrollment in Medicare Advantage (MA) and other prepaid plans increased by 6.8 percent between March 2014 and March 2015 to 2.1 million members, or 21.2 percent of all rural residents eligible for Medicare. This compares to a national enrollment in MA and other prepaid plans of 31.1 percent (16.7 million) of enrollees. (2) Rural enrollment in Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plans (including point-of-service, or POS, plans), Preferred Provider Organization (PP0) plans, and other pre-paid plans (including Medicare Cost and Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly Plans) all increased by 5-13 percent. (3) Enrollment in private fee-for-service (PFFS) plans continued to decline (decreasing nationally by 15.8 percent and 12.1 percent in rural counties over the period March 2014-2015). Only eight states showed an increase in PFFS plan enrollment. Five states experienced decreases of 50 percent or more. (4) The five states with the highest percentages of rural beneficiaries enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan are Minnesota (51.8 percent), Hawaii (39.4 percent), Pennsylvania (36.2 percent), Wisconsin (35.5 percent), and New York (31.5 percent).

  11. 2015: Rural Medicare Advantage Enrollment Update.

    PubMed

    Finegan, Chance; Ullrich, Fred; Mueller, Keith

    2015-07-01

    Key Findings. (1) Rural enrollment in Medicare Advantage (MA) and other prepaid plans increased by 6.8 percent between March 2014 and March 2015 to 2.1 million members, or 21.2 percent of all rural residents eligible for Medicare. This compares to a national enrollment in MA and other prepaid plans of 31.1 percent (16.7 million) of enrollees. (2) Rural enrollment in Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plans (including point-of-service, or POS, plans), Preferred Provider Organization (PP0) plans, and other pre-paid plans (including Medicare Cost and Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly Plans) all increased by 5-13 percent. (3) Enrollment in private fee-for-service (PFFS) plans continued to decline (decreasing nationally by 15.8 percent and 12.1 percent in rural counties over the period March 2014-2015). Only eight states showed an increase in PFFS plan enrollment. Five states experienced decreases of 50 percent or more. (4) The five states with the highest percentages of rural beneficiaries enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan are Minnesota (51.8 percent), Hawaii (39.4 percent), Pennsylvania (36.2 percent), Wisconsin (35.5 percent), and New York (31.5 percent). PMID:26793818

  12. Advantages of disposable endoscopic accessories.

    PubMed

    Petersen, B T

    2000-04-01

    Despite the prevailing emphasis on falling reimbursements and cost containment, the use of disposable endoscopic accessories has grown tremendously. They offer simplicity of use, certain sterility, and reduced labor costs in exchange for higher purchase costs per procedure and the burden of waste disposal. Disposable accessories provide greater variety, complexity, and utility. They carry a cost burden that may be acceptable when the devices are difficult to reprocess, when they incorporate features that justify the added cost, or when their unit cost approaches purchase plus reprocessing costs for reusable alternatives, such as for biopsy forceps. Units with small volumes may prefer the ease of disposable accessories independent of relative cost issues, while large high-volume units may need to evaluate cost data more carefully to maintain sustainable practices.

  13. 78 FR 69878 - First Advantage Corporation, Including On-Site Leased Workers From Tapfin, Staffworks, Aerotek...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-11-21

    ... determination was published in the Federal Register on May 30, 2013 (78 FR 32464). At the request of a company... Tapfin, Staffworks, Aerotek Professional Services, Randstad, Insight Global, LLC and RemX Specialty..., Staffworks, Aerotek Professional Services, Randstad, Insight Global, LLC, and RemX Specialty Staffing,...

  14. The manifold advantages of articulatory representations, Including microphone and speaker normalization

    SciTech Connect

    Hogden, J. E.; Valdez, P. F.; Gurvits, L.

    2002-01-01

    I'm going to be making two broad points during my talk. The first is that we should do a transformation from speech acoustics to articulator positions as part of our speech processing. The second point I will try to make is that we can do a transformation from speech sounds to articulator positions.

  15. 77 FR 67433 - Community Advantage Pilot Program

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-11-09

    ... ADMINISTRATION Community Advantage Pilot Program AGENCY: U.S. Small Business Administration. ACTION: Notice of extension of and changes to Community Advantage Pilot Program and request for comments. SUMMARY: The Community Advantage (``CA'') Pilot Program is a pilot program to increase SBA-guaranteed loans to...

  16. 76 FR 56262 - Community Advantage Pilot Program

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-12

    ... Community Advantage Pilot Program (``CA Pilot Program'') (76 FR 9626). Pursuant to the authority provided to... ADMINISTRATION Community Advantage Pilot Program AGENCY: U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). ACTION: Notice of change to Community Advantage Pilot Program. SUMMARY: On February 18, 2011, SBA published a...

  17. Advantages and Challenges of Superconducting Accelerators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krischel, Detlef

    After a short review of the history toward high-energy superconducting (SC) accelerators for ion beam therapy (IBT), an overview is given on material properties and technical developments enabling to use SC components in a medical accelerator for full body cancer treatment. The design concept and the assembly of a commercially available SC cyclotron for proton therapy (PT) are described and the potential advantages for applying superconductivity are assessed. The discussion includes the first years of operation experience with regard to cryogenic and magnetic performance, automated beam control, and maintenance aspects. An outlook is given on alternative machine concepts for protons-only or for heavier ions. Finally, it is discussed whether the application of superconductivity might be expanded in the future to a broader range of subsystems of clinical IBT accelerators such as SC magnets for transfer beam lines or gantries.

  18. The POP Program: the patient education advantage.

    PubMed

    Claeys, M; Mosher, C; Reesman, D

    1998-01-01

    In 1992, a preoperative education program was developed for total joint replacement patients in a small community hospital. The goals of the program were to increase educational opportunities for the joint replacement patients, prepare patients for hospitalization, plan for discharge needs, and increase efficiency of the orthopaedic program. Since 1992, approximately 600 patients have attended the education program. Outcomes have included positive responses from patients regarding their preparedness for surgery, increased participation in their plan of care, coordinated discharge planning, decreased length of stay, and progression across the continuum of care. A multidisciplinary approach to preparing patients for surgery allows for a comprehensive and efficient education program. Marketing of successful programs can enhance an institution's competitive advantage and help ensure the hospital's viability in the current health care arena.

  19. Nurses’ Creativity: Advantage or Disadvantage

    PubMed Central

    Shahsavari Isfahani, Sara; Hosseini, Mohammad Ali; Fallahi Khoshknab, Masood; Peyrovi, Hamid; Khanke, Hamid Reza

    2015-01-01

    Background Recently, global nursing experts have been aggressively encouraging nurses to pursue creativity and innovation in nursing to improve nursing outcomes. Nurses’ creativity plays a significant role in health and well-being. In most health systems across the world, nurses provide up to 80% of the primary health care; therefore, they are critically positioned to provide creative solutions for current and future global health challenges. Objectives The purpose of this study was to explore Iranian nurses’ perceptions and experiences toward the expression of creativity in clinical settings and the outcomes of their creativity for health care organizations. Patients and Methods A qualitative approach using content analysis was adopted. Data were collected through in-depth semistructured interviews with 14 nurses who were involved in the creative process in educational hospitals affiliated to Jahrom and Tehran Universities of Medical Sciences in Iran. Results Four themes emerged from the data analysis, including a) Improvement in quality of patient care, b) Improvement in nurses’ quality of work, personal and social life, c) Promotion of organization, and d) Unpleasant outcomes. Conclusions The findings indicated that nurses’ creativity in health care organizations can lead to major changes of nursing practice, improvement of care and organizational performance. Therefore, policymakers, nurse educators, nursing and hospital managers should provide a nurturing environment that is conducive to creative thinking, giving the nurses opportunity for flexibility, creativity, support for change, and risk taking. PMID:25793116

  20. Environmental standards provide competitive advantage

    SciTech Connect

    Chynoweth, E.; Kirshner, E.

    1993-04-28

    Quality organizations are breaking new ground with the development of international standards for environmental management. These promise to provide the platform for chemical companies wanting to establish their environmental credibility with a global audience. [open quotes]It will be similar to auditing our customers to ISO 9000[close quote], says the environmental manager for a European chemical firm. [open quote]We will only want to deal with people who have got their environmental act together. And we'll be in a better competitive positions[close quote]. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO;Geneva) has set up a taskforce to develop an environmental management standard, which is expected to be completed by the mid-1990s. Observers think the ISO standard will draw heavily on the British Standard Institute's (BSI;London) environmental management standard, BS7750, which will likely be the first system adopted in the world. Published last year, BS7750 has been extensively piloted in the UK (CW, Sept. 30, 1992, p. 62) and is now set to be revised before being offically adopted by BSI. The UK's Chemical Industries Association (CIA;London) is anxious to prevent a proliferation of standards, and its report on BS7750 pilot projects calls for an approach integrating quality, environment, and health and safety. But standard setters, including ISO, appear to be moving in the opposite direction. In the US, the American national Standards Institute (ANSI;Washington) has started work on an environmental management standard.

  1. Transgenic male mating advantage provides opportunity for Trojan gene effect in a fish

    PubMed Central

    Howard, Richard D.; DeWoody, J. Andrew; Muir, William M.

    2004-01-01

    Genetically modified (GM) strains now exist for many organisms, producing significant promise for agricultural production. However, if these organisms have some fitness advantage, they may also pose an environmental harm when released. High mating success of GM males relative to WT males provides such an important fitness advantage. Here, we provide documentation that GM male medaka fish modified with salmon growth hormone possess an overwhelming mating advantage. GM medaka offspring possess a survival disadvantage relative to WT, however. When both of these fitness components are included in our model, the transgene is predicted to spread if GM individuals enter wild populations (because of the mating advantage) and ultimately lead to population extinction (because of the viability disadvantage). Mating trials indicate that WT males use alternative mating tactics in an effort to counter the mating advantage of GM males, and we use genetic markers to ascertain the success of these alternative strategies. Finally, we model the impact of alternative mating tactics by WT males on transgene spread. Such tactics may reduce the rate of transgene spread, but not the outcome. PMID:14976259

  2. Comparison of Home Advantage in College and Professional Team Sports in the United States.

    PubMed

    Pollard, Richard; Gómez, Miguel A

    2015-09-01

    Home advantage in seven American college team sports (baseball, basketball, football, hockey, lacrosse, soccer and women's basketball) was compared with professional leagues in the United States for the same sports and for the same time period. A total of 81,063 college games and 22,477 professional games were analyzed for the four seasons 2006-07 to 2009-10. There was a significant home advantage, as measured by home winning percentage, in all sports, both college and professional. The overall home advantage in college sports was significantly greater than in professional sports (p<0.015). The mean difference was 3.73 home winning percentage points, being greatest for baseball, basketball, and hockey (all p<0.001). Plausible explanations for these results include differences in college and professional competition in terms of familiarity with local conditions, referee bias, territoriality and psychological factors. However, the influence of travel fatigue was inconclusive. Only for soccer was the home advantage greater for professionals. This was the only sport where crowd size appeared to be having an effect. In addition the rules of college soccer allow more substitution and hence greater coach intervention than in professional soccer, a factor that could also be reducing home advantage.

  3. Comparison of Home Advantage in College and Professional Team Sports in the United States.

    PubMed

    Pollard, Richard; Gómez, Miguel A

    2015-09-01

    Home advantage in seven American college team sports (baseball, basketball, football, hockey, lacrosse, soccer and women's basketball) was compared with professional leagues in the United States for the same sports and for the same time period. A total of 81,063 college games and 22,477 professional games were analyzed for the four seasons 2006-07 to 2009-10. There was a significant home advantage, as measured by home winning percentage, in all sports, both college and professional. The overall home advantage in college sports was significantly greater than in professional sports (p<0.015). The mean difference was 3.73 home winning percentage points, being greatest for baseball, basketball, and hockey (all p<0.001). Plausible explanations for these results include differences in college and professional competition in terms of familiarity with local conditions, referee bias, territoriality and psychological factors. However, the influence of travel fatigue was inconclusive. Only for soccer was the home advantage greater for professionals. This was the only sport where crowd size appeared to be having an effect. In addition the rules of college soccer allow more substitution and hence greater coach intervention than in professional soccer, a factor that could also be reducing home advantage. PMID:26898053

  4. Vegetarian diets: what are the advantages?

    PubMed

    Leitzmann, Claus

    2005-01-01

    A growing body of scientific evidence indicates that wholesome vegetarian diets offer distinct advantages compared to diets containing meat and other foods of animal origin. The benefits arise from lower intakes of saturated fat, cholesterol and animal protein as well as higher intakes of complex carbohydrates, dietary fiber, magnesium, folic acid, vitamin C and E, carotenoids and other phytochemicals. Since vegetarians consume widely divergent diets, a differentiation between various types of vegetarian diets is necessary. Indeed, many contradictions and misunderstandings concerning vegetarianism are due to scientific data from studies without this differentiation. In the past, vegetarian diets have been described as being deficient in several nutrients including protein, iron, zinc, calcium, vitamin B12 and A, n-3 fatty acids and iodine. Numerous studies have demonstrated that the observed deficiencies are usually due to poor meal planning. Well-balanced vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including children, adolescents, pregnant and lactating women, the elderly and competitive athletes. In most cases, vegetarian diets are beneficial in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis, renal disease and dementia, as well as diverticular disease, gallstones and rheumatoid arthritis. The reasons for choosing a vegetarian diet often go beyond health and well-being and include among others economical, ecological and social concerns. The influences of these aspects of vegetarian diets are the subject of the new field of nutritional ecology that is concerned with sustainable life styles and human development.

  5. 34 CFR 303.15 - Include; including.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 34 Education 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Include; including. 303.15 Section 303.15 Education Regulations of the Offices of the Department of Education (Continued) OFFICE OF SPECIAL EDUCATION AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION EARLY INTERVENTION PROGRAM FOR INFANTS AND TODDLERS...

  6. Letter to the Editor: On "Advantages and disadvantages of stiffness instructions when studying postural control" by C.T. Bonnet: You just can't win: Advantages and disadvantages of the postural stability requirement.

    PubMed

    Lajoie, Y; Richer, N; Jehu, D A; Polskaia, N; Saunders, D

    2016-05-01

    In the examination of postural control, instructions to stand as still as possible are common and promote a relatively unnatural sway pattern. The validity of the stability requirement is discussed in the present commentary in response to the discussion initiated by Cedrick T. Bonnet. The advantages of using the stability requirement include: evaluating unbiased postural control, reducing variability in postural sway, manipulating focus of attention, examining the ability to maintain an upright stance, and ecological validity of testing. The disadvantages include: constraining natural postural sway, increasing the complexity of the control condition, promoting an internal focus of attention, and reducing the ability to detect exploratory behaviour. After evaluating the aforementioned advantages and disadvantages, the present commentary suggests that researchers should strive to provide specific instructions to maintain feet, arm and eye position without specifically requiring participants to reduce their postural sway.

  7. Lineup Composition, Suspect Position, and the Sequential Lineup Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carlson, Curt A.; Gronlund, Scott D.; Clark, Steven E.

    2008-01-01

    N. M. Steblay, J. Dysart, S. Fulero, and R. C. L. Lindsay (2001) argued that sequential lineups reduce the likelihood of mistaken eyewitness identification. Experiment 1 replicated the design of R. C. L. Lindsay and G. L. Wells (1985), the first study to show the sequential lineup advantage. However, the innocent suspect was chosen at a lower rate…

  8. Pharyngeal Packing during Rhinoplasty: Advantages and Disadvantages

    PubMed Central

    Razavi, Majid; Taghavi Gilani, Mehryar; Bameshki, Ali Reza; Behdani, Reza; Khadivi, Ehsan; Bakhshaee, Mahdi

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Controversy remains as to the advantages and disadvantages of pharyngeal packing during septorhinoplasty. Our study investigated the effect of pharyngeal packing on postoperative nausea and vomiting and sore throat following this type of surgery or septorhinoplasty. Materials and Methods: This clinical trial was performed on 90 American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) I or II patients who were candidates for septorhinoplasty. They were randomly divided into two groups. Patients in the study group had received pharyngeal packing while those in the control group had not. The incidence of nausea and vomiting and sore throat based on the visual analog scale (VAS) was evaluated postoperatively in the recovery room as well as at 2, 6 and 24 hours. Results: The incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) was 12.3%, with no significant difference between the study and control groups. Sore throat was reported in 50.5% of cases overall (56.8% on pack group and 44.4% on control). Although the severity of pain was higher in the study group at all times, the incidence in the two groups did not differ significantly. Conclusion: The use of pharyngeal packing has no effect in reducing the incidence of nausea and vomiting and sore throat after surgery. Given that induced hypotension is used as the routine method of anesthesia in septorhinoplasty surgery, with a low incidence of hemorrhage and a high risk of unintended retention of pharyngeal packing, its routine use is not recommended for this procedure. PMID:26788486

  9. Endoscopic treatment for gastrointestinal stromal tumor: Advantages and hurdles

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hyung Hun

    2015-01-01

    One of the most prominent characteristics of gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) is their unpredictable and variable behavior. GISTs are not classified as “benign” or “malignant” but are rather stratified by their associated clinical risk of malignancy as determined by tumor size, location, and number of mitoses identified during surgical histology. The difficulty in assessing the malignant potential and prognoses of GISTs as well as the increasing incidence of “incidental GISTs” presents challenges to gastroenterologists. Recently, endoscopic enucleation has been actively performed as both a diagnostic and therapeutic intervention for GISTs. Endoscopic enucleation has several advantages, including keeping the stomach intact after the removal of GISTs, a relatively short hospital stay, a conscious sedation procedure, relatively low cost, and fewer human resources required compared with surgery. However, a low complete resection rate and the risk of perforation could reduce the overall advantages of this procedure. Endoscopic full-thickness resection appears to achieve a very high R0 resection rate. However, this technique absolutely requires a very skilled operator. Moreover, there is a risk of peritoneal seeding due to large active perforation. Laparoscopy endoscopy collaborations have been applied for more stable and pathologically acceptable management. These collaborative procedures have produced excellent outcomes. Many procedures have been developed and attempted because they were technically possible. However, we should first consider the theoretical basis for each technique. Until the efficacy and safety of sole endoscopic access are proved, the laparoscopy endoscopy collaborative procedure appears to be an appropriate method for minimally destructive GIST surgery. PMID:25789089

  10. HOW MUCH FAVORABLE SELECTION IS LEFT IN MEDICARE ADVANTAGE?

    PubMed Central

    PRICE, MARY; MCWILLIAMS, J. MICHAEL; HSU, JOHN; MCGUIRE, THOMAS G.

    2015-01-01

    The health economics literature contains two models of selection, one with endogenous plan characteristics to attract good risks and one with fixed plan characteristics; neither model contains a regulator. Medicare Advantage, a principal example of selection in the literature, is, however, subject to anti-selection regulations. Because selection causes economic inefficiency and because the historically favorable selection into Medicare Advantage plans increased government cost, the effectiveness of the anti-selection regulations is an important policy question, especially since the Medicare Advantage program has grown to comprise 30 percent of Medicare beneficiaries. Moreover, similar anti-selection regulations are being used in health insurance exchanges for those under 65. Contrary to earlier work, we show that the strengthened anti-selection regulations that Medicare introduced starting in 2004 markedly reduced government overpayment attributable to favorable selection in Medicare Advantage. At least some of the remaining selection is plausibly related to fixed plan characteristics of Traditional Medicare versus Medicare Advantage rather than changed selection strategies by Medicare Advantage plans. PMID:26389127

  11. The Down Syndrome Advantage: Fact or Fiction?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Corrice, April M.; Glidden, Laraine Masters

    2009-01-01

    The "Down syndrome advantage" is the popular conception that children with Down syndrome are easier to rear than children with other developmental disabilities. We assessed whether mothers of children with developmental disabilities would demonstrate a consistent Down syndrome advantage as their children aged from 12 to 18 years. Results did not…

  12. A Study to Inform the Design of a National Multicentre Randomised Controlled Trial to Evaluate If Reducing Serum Phosphate to Normal Levels Improves Clinical Outcomes including Mortality, Cardiovascular Events, Bone Pain, or Fracture in Patients on Dialysis

    PubMed Central

    Bhargava, Ramya; Kalra, Philip A.; Brenchley, Paul; Hurst, Helen; Hutchison, Alastair

    2015-01-01

    Background. Retrospective, observational studies link high phosphate with mortality in dialysis patients. This generates research hypotheses but does not establish “cause-and-effect.” A large randomised controlled trial (RCT) of about 3000 patients randomised 50 : 50 to lower or higher phosphate ranges is required to answer the key question: does reducing phosphate levels improve clinical outcomes? Whether such a trial is technically possible is unknown; therefore, a study is necessary to inform the design and conduct of a future, definitive trial. Methodology. Dual centre prospective parallel group study: 100 dialysis patients randomized to lower (phosphate target 0.8 to 1.4 mmol/L) or higher range group (1.8 to 2.4 mmol/L). Non-calcium-containing phosphate binders and questionnaires will be used to achieve target phosphate. Primary endpoint: percentage successfully titrated to required range and percentage maintained in these groups over the maintenance period. Secondary endpoints: consent rate, drop-out rates, and cardiovascular events. Discussion. This study will inform design of a large definitive trial of the effect of phosphate on mortality and cardiovascular events in dialysis patients. If phosphate lowering improves outcomes, we would be reassured of the validity of this clinical practice. If, on the other hand, there is no improvement, a reassessment of resource allocation to therapies proven to improve outcomes will result. Trial Registration Number. This trial is registered with ISRCTN registration number ISRCTN24741445. PMID:26366297

  13. Bilateral Advantages in Subitizing With Visual Masking.

    PubMed

    Pryor, Campbell G; Howe, Piers D L

    2015-01-01

    Performance on a range of visual-processing tasks has been shown to improve when information is split bilaterally across the left and right visual hemifields rather than being restricted to a single visual hemifield. However, a recent study by Delvenne et al. found no such bilateral advantage for subitizing, which is our ability to rapidly and accurately enumerate small quantities of objects. This finding is particularly surprising, as it contradicts the prediction of FINgers of INSTantiation theory that subitizing should benefit from bilateral presentation. Our study investigated the issue by determining if there are any circumstances where a bilateral advantage for subitization occurs. Contrary to Delvenne et al., we found that subitizing could show bilateral advantages, but only when the display was backward-masked. We discuss these findings in relation to how the rate of encoding and the time available for this encoding may affect bilateral advantages in subitizing. A general model is proposed under which bilateral advantages could be explained.

  14. Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy: Part II. Advantages of FT-IR.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perkins, W. D.

    1987-01-01

    This is Part II in a series on Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR). Described are various advantages of FT-IR spectroscopy including energy advantages, wavenumber accuracy, constant resolution, polarization effects, and stepping at grating changes. (RH)

  15. Clinical advantages of carbon-ion radiotherapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsujii, Hirohiko; Kamada, Tadashi; Baba, Masayuki; Tsuji, Hiroshi; Kato, Hirotoshi; Kato, Shingo; Yamada, Shigeru; Yasuda, Shigeo; Yanagi, Takeshi; Kato, Hiroyuki; Hara, Ryusuke; Yamamoto, Naotaka; Mizoe, Junetsu

    2008-07-01

    Carbon-ion radiotherapy (C-ion RT) possesses physical and biological advantages. It was started at NIRS in 1994 using the Heavy Ion Medical Accelerator in Chiba (HIMAC); since then more than 50 protocol studies have been conducted on almost 4000 patients with a variety of tumors. Clinical experiences have demonstrated that C-ion RT is effective in such regions as the head and neck, skull base, lung, liver, prostate, bone and soft tissues, and pelvic recurrence of rectal cancer, as well as for histological types including adenocarcinoma, adenoid cystic carcinoma, malignant melanoma and various types of sarcomas, against which photon therapy could be less effective. Furthermore, when compared with photon and proton RT, a significant reduction of overall treatment time and fractions has been accomplished without enhancing toxicities. Currently, the number of irradiation sessions per patient averages 13 fractions spread over approximately three weeks. This means that in a carbon therapy facility a larger number of patients than is possible with other modalities can be treated over the same period of time.

  16. Thoracoscopy versus thoracotomy: indications and advantages.

    PubMed

    Weatherford, D A; Stephenson, J E; Taylor, S M; Blackhurst, D

    1995-01-01

    Although the diagnosis and treatment of intrathoracic diseases have been affected by the use of thoracoscopy, the indications and advantages of this procedure are poorly defined. To review the indications and results in a community practice, 52 consecutive cases of thoracoscopy were reviewed and the postoperative courses were compared to a control group of 43 simultaneous thoracotomies. Operative indications for thoracoscopy included investigation or treatment of a lung mass (n = 33), spontaneous pneumothorax (n = 10), mediastinal mass (n = 4), pleural effusion (n = 2), mesothelioma (n = 2), and a ruptured hemidiaphragm (n = 1). General endotracheal anesthesia was used in each case. Overall, thoracoscopy was successful in 40 cases (77%). Conversion to formal thoracotomy was required in 14 cases (27%) secondary to poor visualization or to aid in further dissection. Compared to thoracotomy, complication rates were less (7.6 vs 16.2%), hospital stay shorter (5.5 vs 8 days), ICU stay shorter (0 vs 2 days) and pleural drainage time less (2 vs 5 days) in the thoracoscopy group. In summary, 73% of the patients in this study who formerly would have undergone thoracotomy were successfully managed with thoracoscopy alone, with acceptable morbidity and mortality. These data define the indications, morbidity, and mortality of thoracoscopy and suggest that thoracoscopy may emerge as the procedure of choice in the diagnosis and management of many thoracic diseases.

  17. The Star Rating System and Medicare Advantage Plans.

    PubMed

    Sprague, Lisa

    2015-05-01

    With nearly 30 percent of Medicare beneficiaries opting to enroll in Medicare Advantage (MA) plans instead of fee-for-service Medicare, it's safe to say the MA program is quite popular. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) administers a Star Ratings program for MA plans, which offers measures of quality and service among the plans that are used not only to help beneficiaries choose plans but also to award additional payments to plans that meet high standards. These additional payments, in turn, are used by plans to provide additional benefits to beneficiaries or to reduce cost sharing--added features that are likely to factor into beneficiaries' choice of MA plans. The Star Ratings program is also meant to drive improvements in the quality of plans, and this secondary effort seems to have been successful. Despite this success, issues with the Star Ratings system remain, including: how performance metrics are developed, chosen, and maintained; how differences among beneficiary populations (particularly with regard to the dually eligible and those receiving low-income subsidies) should be recognized; and the extent to which health plans can control the variables on which they are being measured. Because the Star Ratings approach has been extended to providers of health care as well--hospitals, nursing homes, and dialysis facilities--these issues are worth exploring as CMS fine-tunes its methods of measurement. PMID:26072530

  18. The Star Rating System and Medicare Advantage Plans.

    PubMed

    Sprague, Lisa

    2015-05-01

    With nearly 30 percent of Medicare beneficiaries opting to enroll in Medicare Advantage (MA) plans instead of fee-for-service Medicare, it's safe to say the MA program is quite popular. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) administers a Star Ratings program for MA plans, which offers measures of quality and service among the plans that are used not only to help beneficiaries choose plans but also to award additional payments to plans that meet high standards. These additional payments, in turn, are used by plans to provide additional benefits to beneficiaries or to reduce cost sharing--added features that are likely to factor into beneficiaries' choice of MA plans. The Star Ratings program is also meant to drive improvements in the quality of plans, and this secondary effort seems to have been successful. Despite this success, issues with the Star Ratings system remain, including: how performance metrics are developed, chosen, and maintained; how differences among beneficiary populations (particularly with regard to the dually eligible and those receiving low-income subsidies) should be recognized; and the extent to which health plans can control the variables on which they are being measured. Because the Star Ratings approach has been extended to providers of health care as well--hospitals, nursing homes, and dialysis facilities--these issues are worth exploring as CMS fine-tunes its methods of measurement.

  19. Medicare Advantage update: benefits, enrollment, and payments after the ACA.

    PubMed

    Linehan, Kathryn

    2013-07-19

    In 2012, the Medicare program paid private health plans $136 billion to cover about 13 million beneficiaries who received Part A and B benefits through the Medicare Advantage (MA) program rather than traditional fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare. Private plans have been a part of the program since the 1970s. Debate about the policy goals--Should they cost less per beneficiary than FFS Medicare? Should they be available to all beneficiaries? Should they be able to offer additional benefits?--has long accompanied Medicare's private plan option.This debate is reflected in the history of Medicare payment policy,and policy decisions over the years have affected plans' willingness to participate and beneficiaries' enrollment at different periods of the program. Recently, evidence that the Medicare program was paying more per beneficiary in MA relative to what would have been spent under FFS Medicare prompted policymakers to reduce MA payments in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA). So far, plans continue to participate in MA and enrollment continues to grow, but payment reductions in 2012 through 2014 have been partially offset by payments made to plans through the quality bonus payment demonstration.This brief contains recent data on plan enrollment, availability, and benefits and discusses MA plan payment policy, including changes to MA payment made in the ACA and their actual and projected effects.

  20. Self-Advantage in the Online World

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Hongsheng; Wang, Fang; Gu, Nianjun; Zhang, Ying

    2015-01-01

    In the current research, screen name was employed to explore the possible cognitive advantage for self-related online material. The results showed that one’s own screen name and real name were detected faster than famous names in both visual search and discrimination tasks. In comparison, there was no difference in visual search speed for the two kinds of self-related names. These findings extend self-advantage from the physical world to the virtual online environment and confirm its robustness. In addition, the present findings also suggest that familiarity might not be the determining factor for self-advantage. PMID:26461490

  1. The advantage of first mention in Spanish

    PubMed Central

    CARREIRAS, MANUEL; GERNSBACHER, MORTON ANN; VILLA, VICTOR

    2015-01-01

    An advantage of first mention—that is, faster access to participants mentioned first in a sentence—has previously been demonstrated only in English. We report three experiments demonstrating that the advantage of first mention occurs also in Spanish sentences, regardless of whether the first-mentioned participants are syntactic subjects, and regardless, too, of whether they are proper names or inanimate objects. Because greater word-order flexibility is allowed in Spanish than in English (e.g., nonpassive object-verb-subject constructions exist in Spanish), these findings provide additional evidence that the advantage of first mention is a general cognitive phenomenon. PMID:24203596

  2. THE HOME ADVANTAGE IN MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL.

    PubMed

    Jones, Marshall B

    2015-12-01

    Home advantage is smaller in baseball than in other major professional sports for men, specifically football, basketball, or soccer. This paper advances an explanation. It begins by reviewing the main observations to support the view that there is little or no home advantage in individual sports. It then presents the case that home advantage originates in impaired teamwork among the away players. The need for teamwork and the extent of it vary from sport to sport. To the extent that a sport requires little teamwork it is more like an individual sport, and the home team would be expected to enjoy only a small advantage. Interactions among players on the same side (teamwork) are much less common in baseball than in the other sports considered.

  3. Women's Memory Advantage Might Skew Alzheimer's Diagnosis

    MedlinePlus

    ... https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_161328.html Women's Memory Advantage Might Skew Alzheimer's Diagnosis Women tend to hold on to better verbal memory skills as they age compared to men, study ...

  4. THE HOME ADVANTAGE IN MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL.

    PubMed

    Jones, Marshall B

    2015-12-01

    Home advantage is smaller in baseball than in other major professional sports for men, specifically football, basketball, or soccer. This paper advances an explanation. It begins by reviewing the main observations to support the view that there is little or no home advantage in individual sports. It then presents the case that home advantage originates in impaired teamwork among the away players. The need for teamwork and the extent of it vary from sport to sport. To the extent that a sport requires little teamwork it is more like an individual sport, and the home team would be expected to enjoy only a small advantage. Interactions among players on the same side (teamwork) are much less common in baseball than in the other sports considered. PMID:26654988

  5. Advantages and disadvantages of stiffness instructions when studying postural control.

    PubMed

    Bonnet, Cédrick T

    2016-05-01

    To understand the maintenance of upright stance, researchers try to discover the fundamental mechanisms and attentional resources devoted to postural control and eventually to the performance of other tasks (e.g., counting in the head). During their studies, some researchers require participants to stand as steady as possible and other simply ask participants to stand naturally. Surprisingly, a clear and direct explanation of the usefulness of the steadiness requirement seems to be lacking, both in experimental and methodological discussions. Hence, the objective of the present note was to provide advantages and disadvantages of this steadiness requirement in studies of postural control. The advantages may be to study fundamental postural control, to eliminate useless postural variability, to control spurious body motions and to control the participants' thoughts. As disadvantages, this steadiness requirement only leads to study postural control in unnatural upright stance, it changes the focus of attention (internal vs. external) and the nature of postural control (unconscious vs. conscious), it increases the difficulty of a supposedly easy control task and it eliminates or reduces the opportunity to record exploratory behaviors. When looking carefully at the four advantages of the steadiness requirement, one can believe that they are, in fact, more disadvantageous than advantageous. Overall therefore, this requirement seems illegitimate and it is proposed that researchers should not use it in the study of postural control. They may use this requirement only if they search to know the limit until which participants can consciously reduce their postural sway.

  6. Cerenkov Counting Technique for Beta Particles: Advantages and Limitations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rengan, K.

    1983-01-01

    Cerenkov counting is a useful technique for assaying medium/high energy beta emitters in aqueous solutions. Advantages of the technique include: (1) simple sample preparation; (2) being able to handle large volume of aqueous solution for counting; and (3) absence of chemical quenching. Cerenkov counting is also less expensive than other methods.…

  7. Foundations for a Competitive Advantage. ILRDC Special Publication Vol. 1.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Illinois Literacy Resource Development Center, Champaign.

    The six articles in this publication provide information on how basic skills education and training can contribute to corporate profitability, using case studies and examples from corporations that promote employee training. The following articles are included: "Laying the Foundations for a Competitive Advantage: Emson's Skills Enhancement…

  8. The 'Adventist advantage'. Glendale Adventist Medical Center distinguishes itself.

    PubMed

    Botvin, Judith D

    2002-01-01

    Glendale Adventist Medical Center, Glendale, Calif., adopted an image-building campaign to differentiate the 450-bed hospital from its neighbors. This included the headline "Adventist Advantage," used in a series of sophisticated ads, printed in gold. In all their efforts, marketers consider the sensibilities of the sizable Armenian, Korean, Hispanic and Chinese populations. PMID:12134406

  9. Competitive advantage of PET/MRI.

    PubMed

    Jadvar, Hossein; Colletti, Patrick M

    2014-01-01

    Multimodality imaging has made great strides in the imaging evaluation of patients with a variety of diseases. Positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) is now established as the imaging modality of choice in many clinical conditions, particularly in oncology. While the initial development of combined PET/magnetic resonance imaging (PET/MRI) was in the preclinical arena, hybrid PET/MR scanners are now available for clinical use. PET/MRI combines the unique features of MRI including excellent soft tissue contrast, diffusion-weighted imaging, dynamic contrast-enhanced imaging, fMRI and other specialized sequences as well as MR spectroscopy with the quantitative physiologic information that is provided by PET. Most evidence for the potential clinical utility of PET/MRI is based on studies performed with side-by-side comparison or software-fused MRI and PET images. Data on distinctive utility of hybrid PET/MRI are rapidly emerging. There are potential competitive advantages of PET/MRI over PET/CT. In general, PET/MRI may be preferred over PET/CT where the unique features of MRI provide more robust imaging evaluation in certain clinical settings. The exact role and potential utility of simultaneous data acquisition in specific research and clinical settings will need to be defined. It may be that simultaneous PET/MRI will be best suited for clinical situations that are disease-specific, organ-specific, related to diseases of the children or in those patients undergoing repeated imaging for whom cumulative radiation dose must be kept as low as reasonably achievable. PET/MRI also offers interesting opportunities for use of dual modality probes. Upon clear definition of clinical utility, other important and practical issues related to business operational model, clinical workflow and reimbursement will also be resolved.

  10. Is There an Islamist Political Advantage?

    PubMed Central

    Cammett, Melani; Luong, Pauline Jones

    2014-01-01

    There is a widespread presumption that Islamists have an advantage over their opponents when it comes to generating mass appeal and winning elections. The question remains, however, as to whether these advantages—or, what we refer to collectively as an Islamist political advantage—actually exist. We argue that—to the extent that Islamists have a political advantage—the primary source of this advantage is reputation rather than the provision of social services, organizational capacity, or ideological hegemony. Our purpose is not to dismiss the main sources of the Islamist governance advantage identified in scholarly literature and media accounts, but to suggest a different causal path whereby each of these factors individually and sometimes jointly promotes a reputation for Islamists as competent, trustworthy, and pure. It is this reputation for good governance that enables Islamists to distinguish themselves in the streets and at the ballot box. PMID:25767370

  11. Pump apparatus including deconsolidator

    SciTech Connect

    Sonwane, Chandrashekhar; Saunders, Timothy; Fitzsimmons, Mark Andrew

    2014-10-07

    A pump apparatus includes a particulate pump that defines a passage that extends from an inlet to an outlet. A duct is in flow communication with the outlet. The duct includes a deconsolidator configured to fragment particle agglomerates received from the passage.

  12. Advantages of Studying Processes in Educational Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schmitz, Bernhard

    2006-01-01

    It is argued that learning and instruction could be conceptualized from a process-analytic perspective. Important questions from the field of learning and instruction are presented which can be answered using our approach of process analyses. A classification system of process concepts and methods is given. One main advantage of this kind of…

  13. Optical modulator including grapene

    DOEpatents

    Liu, Ming; Yin, Xiaobo; Zhang, Xiang

    2016-06-07

    The present invention provides for a one or more layer graphene optical modulator. In a first exemplary embodiment the optical modulator includes an optical waveguide, a nanoscale oxide spacer adjacent to a working region of the waveguide, and a monolayer graphene sheet adjacent to the spacer. In a second exemplary embodiment, the optical modulator includes at least one pair of active media, where the pair includes an oxide spacer, a first monolayer graphene sheet adjacent to a first side of the spacer, and a second monolayer graphene sheet adjacent to a second side of the spacer, and at least one optical waveguide adjacent to the pair.

  14. Employing Dictyostelium as an Advantageous 3Rs Model for Pharmacogenetic Research.

    PubMed

    Otto, Grant P; Cocorocchio, Marco; Munoz, Laura; Tyson, Richard A; Bretschneider, Till; Williams, Robin S B

    2016-01-01

    Increasing concern regarding the use of animals in research has triggered a growing need for non-animal research models in a range of fields. The development of 3Rs (replacement, refinement, and reduction) approaches in research, to reduce the reliance on the use of animal tissue and whole-animal experiments, has recently included the use of Dictyostelium. In addition to not feeling pain and thus being relatively free of ethical constraints, Dictyostelium provides a range of distinct methodological advantages for researchers that has led to a number of breakthroughs. These methodologies include using cell behavior (cell movement and shape) as a rapid indicator of sensitivity to poorly characterized medicines, natural products, and other chemicals to help understand the molecular mechanism of action of compounds. Here, we outline a general approach to employing Dictyostelium as a 3Rs research model, using cell behavior as a readout to better understand how compounds, such as the active ingredient in chilli peppers, capsaicin, function at a cellular level. This chapter helps scientists unfamiliar with Dictyostelium to rapidly employ it as an advantageous model system for research, to reduce the use of animals in research, and to make paradigm shift advances in our understanding of biological chemistry. PMID:27271898

  15. The health advantage of a vegan diet: exploring the gut microbiota connection.

    PubMed

    Glick-Bauer, Marian; Yeh, Ming-Chin

    2014-10-31

    This review examines whether there is evidence that a strict vegan diet confers health advantages beyond that of a vegetarian diet or overall healthy eating. Few studies include vegan subjects as a distinct experimental group, yet when vegan diets are directly compared to vegetarian and omnivorous diets, a pattern of protective health benefits emerges. The relatively recent inclusion of vegan diets in studies of gut microbiota and health allows us the opportunity to assess whether the vegan gut microbiota is distinct, and whether the health advantages characteristic of a vegan diet may be partially explained by the associated microbiota profile. The relationship between diet and the intestinal microbial profile appears to follow a continuum, with vegans displaying a gut microbiota most distinct from that of omnivores, but not always significantly different from that of vegetarians. The vegan gut profile appears to be unique in several characteristics, including a reduced abundance of pathobionts and a greater abundance of protective species. Reduced levels of inflammation may be the key feature linking the vegan gut microbiota with protective health effects. However, it is still unclear whether a therapeutic vegan diet can be prescribed to alter the gut microflora for long-term health benefits.

  16. The health advantage of a vegan diet: exploring the gut microbiota connection.

    PubMed

    Glick-Bauer, Marian; Yeh, Ming-Chin

    2014-11-01

    This review examines whether there is evidence that a strict vegan diet confers health advantages beyond that of a vegetarian diet or overall healthy eating. Few studies include vegan subjects as a distinct experimental group, yet when vegan diets are directly compared to vegetarian and omnivorous diets, a pattern of protective health benefits emerges. The relatively recent inclusion of vegan diets in studies of gut microbiota and health allows us the opportunity to assess whether the vegan gut microbiota is distinct, and whether the health advantages characteristic of a vegan diet may be partially explained by the associated microbiota profile. The relationship between diet and the intestinal microbial profile appears to follow a continuum, with vegans displaying a gut microbiota most distinct from that of omnivores, but not always significantly different from that of vegetarians. The vegan gut profile appears to be unique in several characteristics, including a reduced abundance of pathobionts and a greater abundance of protective species. Reduced levels of inflammation may be the key feature linking the vegan gut microbiota with protective health effects. However, it is still unclear whether a therapeutic vegan diet can be prescribed to alter the gut microflora for long-term health benefits. PMID:25365383

  17. The Health Advantage of a Vegan Diet: Exploring the Gut Microbiota Connection

    PubMed Central

    Glick-Bauer, Marian; Yeh, Ming-Chin

    2014-01-01

    This review examines whether there is evidence that a strict vegan diet confers health advantages beyond that of a vegetarian diet or overall healthy eating. Few studies include vegan subjects as a distinct experimental group, yet when vegan diets are directly compared to vegetarian and omnivorous diets, a pattern of protective health benefits emerges. The relatively recent inclusion of vegan diets in studies of gut microbiota and health allows us the opportunity to assess whether the vegan gut microbiota is distinct, and whether the health advantages characteristic of a vegan diet may be partially explained by the associated microbiota profile. The relationship between diet and the intestinal microbial profile appears to follow a continuum, with vegans displaying a gut microbiota most distinct from that of omnivores, but not always significantly different from that of vegetarians. The vegan gut profile appears to be unique in several characteristics, including a reduced abundance of pathobionts and a greater abundance of protective species. Reduced levels of inflammation may be the key feature linking the vegan gut microbiota with protective health effects. However, it is still unclear whether a therapeutic vegan diet can be prescribed to alter the gut microflora for long-term health benefits. PMID:25365383

  18. Overlapping and distinct representations of advantageous and disadvantageous inequality.

    PubMed

    Yu, Rongjun; Calder, Andrew J; Mobbs, Dean

    2014-07-01

    Advantageous inequality (AI) aversion, or paying at a personal cost to achieve equal reward distribution, represents a unique feature of human behavior. Here, we show that individuals have strong preferences for fairness in both disadvantageous (DI) and advantageous inequality (AI) situations, such that they alter others' payoff at a personal financial cost. At the neural level, we found that both types of inequality activated the putamen, orbitofrontal cortex, and insula, regions implicated in motivation. Individual difference analyses found that those who spent more money to increase others' payoff had stronger activity in putamen when they encountered AI and less functional connectivity between putamen and both orbitofrontal cortex and anterior insula. Conversely, those who spent more money to reduce others' payoff had stronger activity in amygdala in response to DI and less functional connectivity between amygdala and ventral anterior cingulate cortex. These dissociations suggest that both types of inequality are processed by similar brain areas, yet modulated by different neural pathways. PMID:25050425

  19. Sustainable competitive advantage for accountable care organizations.

    PubMed

    Macfarlane, Michael Alex

    2014-01-01

    In the current period of health industry reform, accountable care organizations (ACOs) have emerged as a new model for the delivery of high-quality and cost-effective healthcare. However, few ACOs operate in direct competition with one another, and the accountable care business model has yet to present a means of continually developing new marginal value for patients and network partners. With value-based purchasing and patient consumerism strengthening as market forces, ACOs must build organizational sustainability and competitive advantage to meet the value demands set by customers and competitors. This essay proposes a strategy, adapted from the disciplines of agile software development and Lean product development, through which ACOs can engage internal and external customers in the development of new products that will provide sustainability and competitive advantage to the organization by decreasing waste in development, promoting specialized knowledge, and closely targeting customer value.

  20. Adaptive memory: animacy processing produces mnemonic advantages.

    PubMed

    VanArsdall, Joshua E; Nairne, James S; Pandeirada, Josefa N S; Blunt, Janell R

    2013-01-01

    It is adaptive to remember animates, particularly animate agents, because they play an important role in survival and reproduction. Yet, surprisingly, the role of animacy in mnemonic processing has received little direct attention in the literature. In two experiments, participants were presented with pronounceable nonwords and properties characteristic of either living (animate) or nonliving (inanimate) things. The task was to rate the likelihood that each nonword-property pair represented a living thing or a nonliving object. In Experiment 1, a subsequent recognition memory test for the nonwords revealed a significant advantage for the nonwords paired with properties of living things. To generalize this finding, Experiment 2 replicated the animate advantage using free recall. These data demonstrate a new phenomenon in the memory literature - a possible mnemonic tuning for animacy - and add to growing data supporting adaptive memory theory. PMID:23261948

  1. Sustainable competitive advantage for accountable care organizations.

    PubMed

    Macfarlane, Michael Alex

    2014-01-01

    In the current period of health industry reform, accountable care organizations (ACOs) have emerged as a new model for the delivery of high-quality and cost-effective healthcare. However, few ACOs operate in direct competition with one another, and the accountable care business model has yet to present a means of continually developing new marginal value for patients and network partners. With value-based purchasing and patient consumerism strengthening as market forces, ACOs must build organizational sustainability and competitive advantage to meet the value demands set by customers and competitors. This essay proposes a strategy, adapted from the disciplines of agile software development and Lean product development, through which ACOs can engage internal and external customers in the development of new products that will provide sustainability and competitive advantage to the organization by decreasing waste in development, promoting specialized knowledge, and closely targeting customer value. PMID:25154124

  2. The selective advantage of crypsis in mice.

    PubMed

    Vignieri, Sacha N; Larson, Joanna G; Hoekstra, Hopi E

    2010-07-01

    The light color of mice that inhabit the sandy dunes of Florida's coast have served as a textbook example of adaptation for nearly a century, despite the fact that the selective advantage of crypsis has never been directly tested or quantified in nature. Using plasticine mouse models of light and dark color, we demonstrate a strong selective advantage for mice that match their local background substrate. Further our data suggest that stabilizing selection maintains color matching within a single habitat, as models that are both lighter and darker than their local environment are selected against. These results provide empirical evidence in support of the hypothesis that visual hunting predators shape color patterning in Peromyscus mice and suggest a mechanism by which selection drives the pronounced color variation among populations. PMID:20163447

  3. Women and nurse executives. Finally, some advantages.

    PubMed

    Borman, J S

    1993-10-01

    How do chief nurse executives (CNEs) and chief executive officers (CEOs) compare on selected components of organizational socialization, and do differences exist between genders? To answer these questions, the author compared 127 male CEOs, 127 female CEOs, 232 female CNEs, and 117 male CNEs on their self-reported leadership styles, managerial values, and skills. The differences found between both genders and positions on all measures are largely advantageous to women and nurses in healthcare administration. PMID:8410326

  4. Sinus pericranii: advantages of MR imaging.

    PubMed

    Bigot, J L; Iacona, C; Lepreux, A; Dhellemmes, P; Motte, J; Gomes, H

    2000-10-01

    Sinus pericranii is a rare vascular anomaly involving an abnormal communication between the extracranial and intracranial circulations. A 3-year-old girl presented with a 2 x 2-cm, midline soft-tissue mass at the vertex. Plain skull films and CT using bone windows showed erosion of the parietal bones. MRI confirmed the clinical diagnosis by identifying communication of the vascular mass with the intracranial dural venous sinus. The advantages of MRI are discussed. PMID:11075608

  5. Women and nurse executives. Finally, some advantages.

    PubMed

    Borman, J S

    1993-10-01

    How do chief nurse executives (CNEs) and chief executive officers (CEOs) compare on selected components of organizational socialization, and do differences exist between genders? To answer these questions, the author compared 127 male CEOs, 127 female CEOs, 232 female CNEs, and 117 male CNEs on their self-reported leadership styles, managerial values, and skills. The differences found between both genders and positions on all measures are largely advantageous to women and nurses in healthcare administration.

  6. Listening to Include

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Veck, Wayne

    2009-01-01

    This paper attempts to make important connections between listening and inclusive education and the refusal to listen and exclusion. Two lines of argument are advanced. First, if educators and learners are to include each other within their educational institutions as unique individuals, then they will need to listen attentively to each other.…

  7. Assessing the binocular advantage in aided vision.

    PubMed

    Harrington, Lawrence K; McIntire, John P; Hopper, Darrel G

    2014-09-01

    Advances in microsensors, microprocessors, and microdisplays are creating new opportunities for improving vision in degraded environments through the use of head-mounted displays. Initially, the cutting-edge technology used in these new displays will be expensive. Inevitably, the cost of providing the additional sensor and processing required to support binocularity brings the value of binocularity into question. Several assessments comparing binocular, binocular, and monocular head-mounted displays for aided vision have concluded that the additional performance, if any, provided by binocular head-mounted displays does not justify the cost. The selection of a biocular [corrected] display for use in the F-35 is a current example of this recurring decision process. It is possible that the human binocularity advantage does not carry over to the aided vision application, but more likely the experimental approaches used in the past have been too coarse to measure its subtle but important benefits. Evaluating the value of binocularity in aided vision applications requires an understanding of the characteristics of both human vision and head-mounted displays. With this understanding, the value of binocularity in aided vision can be estimated and experimental evidence can be collected to confirm or reject the presumed binocular advantage, enabling improved decisions in aided vision system design. This paper describes four computational approaches-geometry of stereopsis, modulation transfer function area for stereopsis, probability summation, and binocular summation-that may be useful in quantifying the advantage of binocularity in aided vision.

  8. Explaining Asian Americans’ academic advantage over whites

    PubMed Central

    Hsin, Amy; Xie, Yu

    2014-01-01

    The superior academic achievement of Asian Americans is a well-documented phenomenon that lacks a widely accepted explanation. Asian Americans’ advantage in this respect has been attributed to three groups of factors: (i) socio-demographic characteristics, (ii) cognitive ability, and (iii) academic effort as measured by characteristics such as attentiveness and work ethic. We combine data from two nationally representative cohort longitudinal surveys to compare Asian-American and white students in their educational trajectories from kindergarten through high school. We find that the Asian-American educational advantage is attributable mainly to Asian students exerting greater academic effort and not to advantages in tested cognitive abilities or socio-demographics. We test explanations for the Asian–white gap in academic effort and find that the gap can be further attributed to (i) cultural differences in beliefs regarding the connection between effort and achievement and (ii) immigration status. Finally, we highlight the potential psychological and social costs associated with Asian-American achievement success. PMID:24799702

  9. Nanomaterials in the application of tumor vaccines: advantages and disadvantages

    PubMed Central

    Li, XD; Gao, JY; Yang, Y; Fang, HY; Han, YJ; Wang, XM; Ge, W

    2013-01-01

    Tumor vaccines are a novel approach to the treatment of malignancy, and are attracting the attention of the medical profession. Nanomaterials have significant advantages in the preparation of a tumor vaccine, including their ability to penetrate and target cancer tissue and their antigenic properties. In this review, we focus on several nanomaterials, ie, carbon nanotubes, nanoemulsions, nanosized aluminum, and nanochitosan. Applications for these nanomaterials in nanovaccines and their biological characteristics, as well as their potential toxicity, are discussed. PMID:23776336

  10. [Chorionic Villus Sampling in cytogenetic analysis--disadvantages and advantages].

    PubMed

    Gnyś-Wiercioch, Agnieszka; Bloch, Renata; Grolik, Barbara; Hadaś, Jolanta; Kania, Agnieszka; Szołtysik-Szot, Mariola; Sodowska, Henryka

    2012-05-01

    Chorionic villus sampling is used in prenatal diagnosis, enabling to detect fetal genetic abnormalities. Its advantages include the possibility of performing the procedure during the first trimester of pregnancy relatively fast result, risk of miscarriage comparable to that in case of amniocentesis. The disadvantages of this method are: difficult cytogenetic analysis, the possibility of contamination with maternal cells and the risk of mosaicism. There should always be a valid indication to perform the CVS procedure.

  11. The survival advantage: Underlying mechanisms and extant limitations.

    PubMed

    Kazanas, Stephanie A; Altarriba, Jeanette

    2015-01-01

    Recently, researchers have begun to investigate the function of memory in our evolutionary history. According to Nairne and colleagues (e.g., Nairne, Pandeirada, and Thompson, 2008; Nairne, Thompson, and Pandeirada, 2007), the best mnemonic strategy for learning lists of unrelated words may be one that addresses the same problems that our Pleistocene ancestors faced: fitness-relevant problems including securing food and water, as well as protecting themselves from predators. Survival processing has been shown to promote better recall and recognition memory than many well-known mnemonic strategies (e.g., pleasantness ratings, imagery, generation, etc.). However, the survival advantage does not extend to all types of stimuli and tasks. The current review presents research that has replicated Nairne et al.'s (2007) original findings, in addition to the research designs that fail to replicate the survival advantage. In other words, there are specific manipulations in which survival processing does not appear to benefit memory any more than other strategies. Potential mechanisms for the survival advantage are described, with an emphasis on those that are the most plausible. These proximate mechanisms outline the memory processes that may contribute to the advantage, although the ultimate mechanism may be the congruity between the survival scenario and Pleistocene problem-solving. PMID:25947360

  12. Recognition advantage of happy faces: tracing the neurocognitive processes.

    PubMed

    Calvo, Manuel G; Beltrán, David

    2013-09-01

    The present study aimed to identify the brain processes-and their time course-underlying the typical behavioral recognition advantage of happy facial expressions. To this end, we recorded EEG activity during an expression categorization task for happy, angry, fearful, sad, and neutral faces, and the correlation between event-related-potential (ERP) patterns and recognition performance was assessed. N170 (150-180 ms) was enhanced for angry, fearful and sad faces; N2 was reduced and early posterior negativity (EPN; both, 200-320 ms) was enhanced for happy and angry faces; P3b (350-450 ms) was reduced for happy and neutral faces; and slow positive wave (SPW; 700-800 ms) was reduced for happy faces. This reveals (a) an early processing (N170) of negative affective valence (i.e., angry, fearful, and sad), (b) discrimination (N2 and EPN) of affective intensity or arousal (i.e., angry and happy), and (c) facilitated categorization (P3b) and decision (SPW) due to expressive distinctiveness (i.e., happy). In addition, N2, EPN, P3b, and SPW were related to categorization accuracy and speed. This suggests that conscious expression recognition and the typical happy face advantage depend on encoding of expressive intensity and, especially, on later response selection, rather than on the early processing of affective valence.

  13. Home advantage in sport: an overview of studies on the advantage of playing at home.

    PubMed

    Nevill, A M; Holder, R L

    1999-10-01

    This review identifies the most likely causes of home advantage. The results of previous studies have identified 4 factors thought to be responsible for the home advantage. These can be categorised under the general headings of crowd, learning, travel and rule factors. From the accumulated evidence, rule factors were found to play only a minor role (in a limited number of sports) in contributing to home advantage. Studies investigating the effect of learning factors found that little benefit was to be gained from being familiar with the local conditions when playing at home. There was evidence to suggest that travel factors were responsible for part of the home advantage, provided the journey involved crossing a number of time zones. However, since high levels of home advantage are observed within countries where travel distances are not great. travel factors were not thought to be a major cause of home advantage. The evidence from studies investigating crowd factors appeared to provide the most dominant causes of home advantage. A number of studies provide strong evidence that home advantage increases with crowd size, until the crowd reaches a certain size or consistency (a more balanced number of home and away supporters), after which a peak in home advantage is observed. Two possible mechanisms were proposed to explain these observations: either (i) the crowd is able to raise the performance of the home competitors relative to the away competitors; or (ii) the crowd is able to influence the officials to subconsciously favour the home team. The literature supports the latter to be the most important and dominant explanation. Clearly, it only takes 2 or 3 crucial decisions to go against the away team or in favour of the home team to give the side playing at home the 'edge'.

  14. Enforced Clonality Confers a Fitness Advantage

    PubMed Central

    Martínková, Jana; Klimešová, Jitka

    2016-01-01

    In largely clonal plants, splitting of a maternal plant into potentially independent plants (ramets) is usually spontaneous; however, such fragmentation also occurs in otherwise non-clonal species due to application of external force. This process might play an important yet largely overlooked role for otherwise non-clonal plants by providing a mechanism to regenerate after disturbance. Here, in a 5-year garden experiment on two short-lived, otherwise non-clonal species, Barbarea vulgaris and Barbarea stricta, we compared the fitness of plants fragmented by simulated disturbance (“enforced ramets”) both with plants that contemporaneously originate in seed and with individuals unscathed by the disturbance event. Because the ability to regrow from fragments is related to plant age and stored reserves, we compared the effects of disturbance applied during three different ontogenetic stages of the plants. In B. vulgaris, enforced ramet fitness was higher than the measured fitness values of both uninjured plants and plants established from seed after the disturbance. This advantage decreased with increasing plant age at the time of fragmentation. In B. stricta, enforced ramet fitness was lower than or similar to fitness of uninjured plants and plants grown from seed. Our results likely reflect the habitat preferences of the study species, as B. vulgaris occurs in anthropogenic, disturbed habitats where body fragmentation is more probable and enforced clonality thus more advantageous than in the more natural habitats preferred by B. stricta. Generalizing from our results, we see that increased fitness yielded by enforced clonality would confer an evolutionary advantage in the face of disturbance, especially in habitats where a seed bank has not been formed, e.g., during invasion or colonization. Our results thus imply that enforced clonality should be taken into account when studying population dynamics and life strategies of otherwise non-clonal species in disturbed

  15. Using information networks for competitive advantage.

    PubMed

    Rothenberg, R L

    1995-01-01

    Although the healthcare "information superhighway" has received considerable attention, the use of information technology to create a sustainable competitive advantage is not new to other industries. Economic survival in the new world of managed care may depend on a healthcare delivery system's ability to use network-based communications technologies to differentiate itself in the market, especially through cost savings and demonstration of desirable outcomes. The adaptability of these technologies can help position healthcare organizations to break the paradigms of the past and thrive in a market environment that stresses coordination, efficiency, and quality in various settings.

  16. Testosterone, territoriality, and the 'home advantage'.

    PubMed

    Neave, Nick; Wolfson, Sandy

    2003-02-01

    The consistently better performance seen by teams in various sporting contexts when playing at home is referred to as the 'home advantage'. Various explanations have been put forward to account for this robust phenomenon, though none has yet focussed on possible hormonal factors. In an initial study, we showed that salivary testosterone levels in soccer players were significantly higher before a home game than an away game.In a second study involving a different group of soccer players, this finding was replicated over two home games, two away games, and three training sessions. Perceived rivalry of the opposing team was important as testosterone levels were higher before playing an 'extreme' rival than a 'moderate' rival. Self-reported measures of mood in both studies were not linked to testosterone level. The present results corroborate and extend earlier findings on the relationships between testosterone, territoriality, and dominance in human competitive encounters and further suggest an important role for testosterone in the home advantage seen in various team sports.

  17. Relatively fast! Efficiency advantages of comparative thinking.

    PubMed

    Mussweiler, Thomas; Epstude, Kai

    2009-02-01

    Comparisons are a ubiquitous process in information processing. Seven studies examine whether, how, and when comparative thinking increases the efficiency of judgment and choice. Studies 1-4 demonstrate that procedurally priming participants to engage in more vs. less comparison influences how they process information about a target. Specifically, they retrieve less information about the target (Studies 1A, 1B), think more about an information-rich standard (Study 2) about which they activate judgment-relevant information (Study 3), and use this information to compensate for missing target information (Study 4). Studies 2-5 demonstrate the ensuing efficiency advantages. Participants who are primed on comparative thinking are faster in making a target judgment (Studies 2A, 2B, 4, 5) and have more residual processing capacities for a secondary task (Study 5). Studies 6 and 7 establish two boundary conditions by demonstrating that comparative thinking holds efficiency advantages only if target and standard are partly characterized by alignable features (Study 6) that are difficult to evaluate in isolation (Study 7). These findings indicate that comparative thinking may often constitute a useful mechanism to simplify information processing. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. Concomitant vs. Comparative Advantages: Sufficient vs. Necessary Conditions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flaningam, Carl D.

    1981-01-01

    Discusses the concomitant advantages case in academic debate. Examines the distinction between concomitant and comparative advantages and the implications of this distinction for concomitant advantages as a form of argument. (PD)

  19. Public health advantages of biological insect controls.

    PubMed Central

    Bosch, R

    1976-01-01

    Biological control is not new, it is simply newly appreciated. This renewed appreciation stems from the widespread insecticide treadmill which is largely a product of insecticide disruption of the balance of insect communities. Biological control is a natural phenomenon; the regulation of plant and animal numbers by natural enemies. In this broad sense, biological control is vital to public health because it keeps the myriad insect species from out-competing us. It also has direct public health advantages as where natural enemies are manipulated to control disease vectoring insects. Insecticide distruption of biological control by insecticides and the resulting pesticide treadmill have serious public health implications. One is the increased pesticide load in the environment. The other is the acceleration of pesticide resistance in disease vectoring insects. The treadmill and its associated hazards will not abate so long as chemical control dominates our pest management strategy. PMID:976223

  20. Home advantage in Turkish professional soccer.

    PubMed

    Seçkin, Aylin; Pollard, Richard

    2008-08-01

    Home advantage is known to play an important role in the outcome of professional soccer games and to vary considerably worldwide. In the Turkish Super League over the last 12 years, 61.5% of the total points gained have been won by the home team, a figure similar to the worldwide average and to the Premier League in England. It is lower (57.7%) for games played between teams from Istanbul and especially high for games involving teams from cities in the more remote and ethnically distinct parts of Turkey (Van and Diyarbakir). Match performance data show that although home teams in Turkey take 26% more shots at goal than away teams, the success rates for shots do not differ. For fouls and disciplinary cards, home and away teams do not differ significantly in Turkey, a finding that differs from games in England, perhaps due to less referee bias.

  1. The kinematic advantage of electric cars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyn, Jan-Peter

    2015-11-01

    Acceleration of a common car with with a turbocharged diesel engine is compared to the same type with an electric motor in terms of kinematics. Starting from a state of rest, the electric car reaches a distant spot earlier than the diesel car, even though the latter has a better specification for engine power and average acceleration from 0 to 100 km h-1. A three phase model of acceleration as a function of time fits the data of the electric car accurately. The first phase is a quadratic growth of acceleration in time. It is shown that the tenfold higher coefficient for the first phase accounts for most of the kinematic advantage of the electric car.

  2. The academic advantage: gender disparities in patenting.

    PubMed

    Sugimoto, Cassidy R; Ni, Chaoqun; West, Jevin D; Larivière, Vincent

    2015-01-01

    We analyzed gender disparities in patenting by country, technological area, and type of assignee using the 4.6 million utility patents issued between 1976 and 2013 by the United States Patent and Trade Office (USPTO). Our analyses of fractionalized inventorships demonstrate that women's rate of patenting has increased from 2.7% of total patenting activity to 10.8% over the nearly 40-year period. Our results show that, in every technological area, female patenting is proportionally more likely to occur in academic institutions than in corporate or government environments. However, women's patents have a lower technological impact than that of men, and that gap is wider in the case of academic patents. We also provide evidence that patents to which women--and in particular academic women--contributed are associated with a higher number of International Patent Classification (IPC) codes and co-inventors than men. The policy implications of these disparities and academic setting advantages are discussed.

  3. The advantages of stereo vision in a face recognition system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Yufeng; Blasch, Erik

    2014-06-01

    Humans can recognize a face with binocular vision, while computers typically use a single face image. It is known that the performance of face recognition (by a computer) can be improved using the score fusion of multimodal images and multiple algorithms. A question is: Can we apply stereo vision to a face recognition system? We know that human binocular vision has many advantages such as stereopsis (3D vision), binocular summation, and singleness of vision including fusion of binocular images (cyclopean image). For face recognition, a 3D face or 3D facial features are typically computed from a pair of stereo images. In human visual processes, the binocular summation and singleness of vision are similar as image fusion processes. In this paper, we propose an advanced face recognition system with stereo imaging capability, which is comprised of two 2-in-1 multispectral (visible and thermal) cameras and three recognition algorithms (circular Gaussian filter, face pattern byte, and linear discriminant analysis [LDA]). Specifically, we present and compare stereo fusion at three levels (images, features, and scores) by using stereo images (from left camera and right camera). Image fusion is achieved with three methods (Laplacian pyramid, wavelet transform, average); feature fusion is done with three logical operations (AND, OR, XOR); and score fusion is implemented with four classifiers (LDA, k-nearest neighbor, support vector machine, binomial logical regression). The system performance is measured by probability of correct classification (PCC) rate (reported as accuracy rate in this paper) and false accept rate (FAR). The proposed approaches were validated with a multispectral stereo face dataset from 105 subjects. Experimental results show that any type of stereo fusion can improve the PCC, meanwhile reduce the FAR. It seems that stereo image/feature fusion is superior to stereo score fusion in terms of recognition performance. Further score fusion after image

  4. Fiber-optic parametric amplifiers: Their advantages and limitations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yaman, Fatih

    Fiber-optic parametric amplifiers (FOPAs) can be used in lightwave systems for several signal-processing applications including optical amplification, phase conjugation, and wavelength conversion. In principle, FOPAs can provide high gain uniform over a wide wavelength range (> 100 nm). What is more, FOPAs add little noise to the amplified signal. FOPAs can have noise figure as low as 0 dB when operated in the phase-sensitive mode and 3 dB in the phase insensitive mode. However, in practice, these advantages of FOPAs are compromised. In this work, I investigate several factors that limit the performance of FOPAs, and propose practical schemes to minimize those limitations. FOPAs can provide a relatively large gain bandwidth because the gain spectrum of FOPAs is not determined by material resonances but by the phase-matching condition. For the same reason, FOPAs are very sensitive to perturbations stemming from fiber irregularities. One such irregularity is that fiber dispersion varies randomly along the fiber length. My numerical modeling showed that, because of such variations, FOPA gain spectrum cannot maintain its flatness and also that FOPA gain profile changes from one fiber to the other. Using stochastic methods, an analytic theory is developed that can predict an "average gain spectrum." This analytic theory can be used to show that flatness of FOPA gain is recovered at the expense of reducing the gain bandwidth. Another fiber irregularity that affects FOPA gain spectrum is the residual birefringence. During the fiber-drawing process, the cross section of fiber core inevitably deviates from perfect circular symmetry. As a result, all non-polarization maintaining fibers exhibit residual birefringence. Both the magnitude of birefringence and the direction of its principal axis vary along the fiber length as well as in time. Because of residual birefringence, state of polarizations of the propagating fields change randomly also. Since the underlying four

  5. Women's Heart Advantage Program: the impact 3 years later.

    PubMed

    Gombeski, William R; Kramer, R Kyle; Freed, Lisa; Foody, JoAnne; Parkosewich, Janet; Wilson, Tammi; Wack, Jeffery T; D'Onofrio, Gail

    2005-01-01

    Yale-New Haven Hospital, in partnership with Voluntary Hospital Association (VHA Inc), launched the Women's Heart Advantage program in March 2001. Major program components implemented include (1) a comprehensive initial and ongoing internal communication program; (2) a health promotion initiative including a 24-hour, 7-days-a-week women's heart line staffed by nurses and an Internet health question-and-answer forum; (3) significant ongoing communication with nurses and physicians; (4) a community outreach effort to educate poor and minority women; and (5) an aggressive effort to secure financial partners to underwrite the cost of the program. Before launching the program, a telephone survey of 300 randomly selected New Haven County women ages 40 to 70 years was initiated in January 2001 and repeated in January 2002, 2003, and 2004. Findings include (1) the percentage of women who recognize heart disease as the number-one killer of women their age increased from 26% in 2001 to 59% in 2004, (2) the percentage of women who would call 9-1-1 or go directly to a hospital emergency department increased from 63% in 2002 to 83% in 2004, and (3) the percentage of women aware of recent Women's Heart Advantage program promotion grew from 33% in 2002 to 50% in 2004. Perhaps most importantly, the number of women with heart problems admitted through the hospital's emergency department increased from 1528 per year in 2001 to 1870 per year in 2004 (7.5% annual increase), whereas the number of men with heart problems admitted through the emergency department during the same time period has been relatively low (0.8% annual increase). By linking clinical, public health, and marketing expertise along with finding ways to partner with other organizations, the Women's Heart Advantage program has contributed to remarkable changes in women's awareness, knowledge, and behaviors, suggesting a model for approaching similar health-related problems. PMID:16521611

  6. Pathways to hostile collective action: The roles of general attitudes toward the advantaged group and situational anger.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Jie; Wang, Erping

    2012-12-01

    Collective action is a group behavior that aims to improve the status, power, or influence of an entire group. The present study focused on hostile collective action performed for releasing negative emotions, and explored a pathway including the roles of general attitudes toward the advantaged group and situational group-based anger in predicting the disadvantaged groups' hostile collective action. Group-level data were collected via a laboratory experiment. The results obtained using multiple regression analysis suggested that general attitudes toward the advantaged group formed before the trigger event predicted hostile collective action indirectly through the mediating effects of situational group-based anger and collective action tendencies, which were both produced after that trigger event. In addition, situational group-based anger predicted hostile collective action fully through collective action tendencies. These pathways provided a continuous process of hostile collective action in which general attitudes toward the advantaged group that were formed before the trigger events would influence situational group-based anger when the trigger events occurred, and then affected hostile collective action for responding to these events. Thus, hostile collective action could be predicted before the trigger events by monitoring the disadvantaged groups' attitudes toward the advantaged group. Moreover, reducing destructive collective action by improving intergroup attitudes through some effective interventions was discussed in this study.

  7. A Bilingual Advantage in Task Switching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prior, Anat; MacWhinney, Brian

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the possibility that lifelong bilingualism may lead to enhanced efficiency in the ability to shift between mental sets. We compared the performance of monolingual and fluent bilingual college students in a task-switching paradigm. Bilinguals incurred reduced switching costs in the task-switching paradigm when compared with…

  8. Advantages and disadvantages of pinless external fixation.

    PubMed

    Thomas, S R; Giele, H; Simpson, A H

    2000-12-01

    The AO pinless external fixator (PEF) uses trocar tipped clamps to grip the outer tibial cortex rather than pins to transfix it. Its main advantage is to avoid further contamination of the medullary canal in open tibial fractures where a nail may subsequently be used. We tested the anatomical safety of this device and its effect on plastic surgical procedures compared with a standard unilateral external fixator (UEF).The PEF and UEF were placed on two amputated limbs which were then dissected. Structures at risk were traced on ten cadaver limbs. We found that important anatomical structures were endangered by the PEF and that safe zones could not always be defined. The UEF avoided these structures. Plastic surgical approaches were made more difficult by the PEF which imposed limitations on local flap design and endangered the arterial perforators which supply them. We conclude that safety is compromised by the PEF because margins for error are small. It poses additional problems in soft tissue reconstruction and highlights the need for co-operation between plastic surgical and orthopaedic teams in choice of fixation device.

  9. [Coronary revascularization by arterial bypasses: advantages, disadvantages].

    PubMed

    Bical, O; Deleuze, P; Sousa Uva, M

    1997-01-01

    Coronary vein grafts are frequently become occluded or develop atherosclerotic lesions in the long-term. In contrast, the internal mammary artery has a very satisfactory long-term patency rate. The use of an internal mammary artery on the LAD consequently increases the benefit of coronary surgery. The benefit of using 2 internal mammary arteries or other arterial grafts for coronary artery bypass surgery is more controversial. The advantages and disadvantages of the various coronary artery grafts are reported together with the clinical experience of several teams in this area. Coronary artery surgery should be reserved to patients with a good general condition, who are likely to benefit from this type of revascularization. The right internal mammary artery is unsuitable for revascularization of the right coronary network and the two internal mammary arteries must be used to revascularize the left coronary network, in order to obtain a good result. However, surgeons must be aware of the limitations of coronary artery surgery and these techniques should be used cautiously.

  10. Quantifying the Magnetic Advantage in Magnetotaxis

    PubMed Central

    Smith, M. J.; Sheehan, P. E.; Perry, L. L.; O'Connor, K.; Csonka, L. N.; Applegate, B. M.; Whitman, L. J.

    2006-01-01

    Magnetotactic bacteria are characterized by the production of magnetosomes, nanoscale particles of lipid bilayer encapsulated magnetite, that act to orient the bacteria in magnetic fields. These magnetosomes allow magneto-aerotaxis, which is the motion of the bacteria along a magnetic field and toward preferred concentrations of oxygen. Magneto-aerotaxis has been shown to direct the motion of these bacteria downward toward sediments and microaerobic environments favorable for growth. Herein, we compare the magneto-aerotaxis of wild-type, magnetic Magnetospirillum magneticum AMB-1 with a nonmagnetic mutant we have engineered. Using an applied magnetic field and an advancing oxygen gradient, we have quantified the magnetic advantage in magneto-aerotaxis as a more rapid migration to preferred oxygen levels. Magnetic, wild-type cells swimming in an applied magnetic field more quickly migrate away from the advancing oxygen than either wild-type cells in a zero field or the nonmagnetic cells in any field. We find that the responses of the magnetic and mutant strains are well described by a relatively simple analytical model, an analysis of which indicates that the key benefit of magnetotaxis is an enhancement of a bacterium's ability to detect oxygen, not an increase in its average speed moving away from high oxygen concentrations. PMID:16714352

  11. Advantageous grain boundaries in iron pnictide superconductors

    PubMed Central

    Katase, Takayoshi; Ishimaru, Yoshihiro; Tsukamoto, Akira; Hiramatsu, Hidenori; Kamiya, Toshio; Tanabe, Keiichi; Hosono, Hideo

    2011-01-01

    High critical temperature superconductors have zero power consumption and could be used to produce ideal electric power lines. The principal obstacle in fabricating superconducting wires and tapes is grain boundaries—the misalignment of crystalline orientations at grain boundaries, which is unavoidable for polycrystals, largely deteriorates critical current density. Here we report that high critical temperature iron pnictide superconductors have advantages over cuprates with respect to these grain boundary issues. The transport properties through well-defined bicrystal grain boundary junctions with various misorientation angles (θGB) were systematically investigated for cobalt-doped BaFe2As2 (BaFe2As2:Co) epitaxial films fabricated on bicrystal substrates. The critical current density through bicrystal grain boundary (JcBGB) remained high (>1 MA cm−2) and nearly constant up to a critical angle θc of ∼9°, which is substantially larger than the θc of ∼5° for YBa2Cu3O7–δ. Even at θGB>θc, the decay of JcBGB was much slower than that of YBa2Cu3O7–δ. PMID:21811238

  12. Competitive advantages of Caedibacter-infected Paramecia.

    PubMed

    Kusch, Jürgen; Czubatinski, Lars; Wegmann, Silke; Hubner, Markus; Alter, Margret; Albrecht, Petra

    2002-03-01

    Intracellular bacteria of the genus Caedibacter limit the reproduction of their host, the freshwater ciliate Paramecium. Reproduction rates of infected strains of paramecia were significantly lower than those of genetically identical strains that had lost their parasites after treatment with an antibiotic. Interference competition occurs when infected paramecia release a toxic form of the parasitic bacterium that kills uninfected paramecia. In mixed cultures of infected and uninfected strains of either P tetraurelia or of P novaurelia, the infected strains outcompeted the uninfected strains. Infection of new host paramecia seems to be rare. Infection of new hosts was not observed in either mixtures of infected with uninfected strains, or after incubation of paramecia with isolated parasites. The competitive advantages of the host paramecia, in combination with their vegetative reproduction, makes infection of new hosts by the bacterial parasites unnecessary, and could be responsible for the continued existence of "killer paramecia" in nature. Caedibacter parasites are not a defensive adaptation. Feeding rates and reproduction of the predators Didinium nasutum (Ciliophora) and Amoeba proteus (Amoebozoa, Gymnamoebia) were not influenced by whether or not their paramecia prey were infected. Infection of the predators frequently occurred when they preyed on infected paramecia. Caedibacter-infected predators may influence competition between Paramecium strains by release of toxic parasites into the environment that are harmful to uninfected strains.

  13. The Academic Advantage: Gender Disparities in Patenting

    PubMed Central

    Sugimoto, Cassidy R.; Ni, Chaoqun; West, Jevin D.; Larivière, Vincent

    2015-01-01

    We analyzed gender disparities in patenting by country, technological area, and type of assignee using the 4.6 million utility patents issued between 1976 and 2013 by the United States Patent and Trade Office (USPTO). Our analyses of fractionalized inventorships demonstrate that women’s rate of patenting has increased from 2.7% of total patenting activity to 10.8% over the nearly 40-year period. Our results show that, in every technological area, female patenting is proportionally more likely to occur in academic institutions than in corporate or government environments. However, women’s patents have a lower technological impact than that of men, and that gap is wider in the case of academic patents. We also provide evidence that patents to which women—and in particular academic women—contributed are associated with a higher number of International Patent Classification (IPC) codes and co-inventors than men. The policy implications of these disparities and academic setting advantages are discussed. PMID:26017626

  14. Azelastine and fluticasone nasal spray: any advantage?

    PubMed

    2014-02-01

    Allergic rhinitis affects over 20% of the UK population. It can have a significant impact on quality of life and interferes with both attendance and performance at school and at work.1 Intranasal corticosteroids are widely recognised as the most effective symptomatic treatment available, but oral or intranasal new generation antihistamines are usually offered as first-line treatment for intermittent symptoms.1,2 Patients with moderate to severe allergic rhinitis may require a combination of drugs, and many patients only achieve limited control of their symptoms.3 Dymista is described as a novel intranasal formulation combining the antihistamine azelastine hydrochloride with the corticosteroid fluticasone propionate.3 It is licensed for the relief of symptoms of moderate to severe seasonal and perennial allergic rhinitis in adults and adolescents if monotherapy with either intranasal antihistamine or glucocorticoid is not considered sufficient.4 The manufacturer claims that compared with fluticasone or azelastine alone, Dymista is twice as effective (when placebo effect is excluded) in providing relief from both nasal and ocular symptoms, and leads to greater overall relief from nasal symptoms. It also claims that Dymista controls nasal symptoms up to 6 days faster than fluticasone.5 Here we consider the evidence for Dymista and whether it represents a significant advantage in the management of patients with allergic rhinitis.

  15. Advantages of a leveled commitment contracting protocol

    SciTech Connect

    Sandholm, T.W.; Lesser, V.R.

    1996-12-31

    In automated negotiation systems consisting of self-interested agents, contracts have traditionally been binding. Such contracts do not allow agents to efficiently accommodate future events. Game theory has proposed contingency contracts to solve this problem. Among computational agents, contingency contracts are often impractical due to large numbers of interdependent and unanticipated future events to be conditioned on, and because some events are not mutually observable. This paper proposes a leveled commitment contracting protocol that allows self-interested agents to efficiently accommodate future events by having the possibility of unilaterally decommitting from a contract based on local reasoning. A decommitment penalty is assigned to both agents in a contract: to be freed from the contract, an agent only pays this penalty to the other party. It is shown through formal analysis of several contracting settings that this leveled commitment feature in a contracting protocol increases Pareto efficiency of deals and can make contracts individually rational when no full commitment contract can. This advantage holds even if the agents decommit manipulatively.

  16. Azelastine and fluticasone nasal spray: any advantage?

    PubMed

    2014-02-01

    Allergic rhinitis affects over 20% of the UK population. It can have a significant impact on quality of life and interferes with both attendance and performance at school and at work.1 Intranasal corticosteroids are widely recognised as the most effective symptomatic treatment available, but oral or intranasal new generation antihistamines are usually offered as first-line treatment for intermittent symptoms.1,2 Patients with moderate to severe allergic rhinitis may require a combination of drugs, and many patients only achieve limited control of their symptoms.3 Dymista is described as a novel intranasal formulation combining the antihistamine azelastine hydrochloride with the corticosteroid fluticasone propionate.3 It is licensed for the relief of symptoms of moderate to severe seasonal and perennial allergic rhinitis in adults and adolescents if monotherapy with either intranasal antihistamine or glucocorticoid is not considered sufficient.4 The manufacturer claims that compared with fluticasone or azelastine alone, Dymista is twice as effective (when placebo effect is excluded) in providing relief from both nasal and ocular symptoms, and leads to greater overall relief from nasal symptoms. It also claims that Dymista controls nasal symptoms up to 6 days faster than fluticasone.5 Here we consider the evidence for Dymista and whether it represents a significant advantage in the management of patients with allergic rhinitis. PMID:24504481

  17. Competitive advantages of Caedibacter-infected Paramecia.

    PubMed

    Kusch, Jürgen; Czubatinski, Lars; Wegmann, Silke; Hubner, Markus; Alter, Margret; Albrecht, Petra

    2002-03-01

    Intracellular bacteria of the genus Caedibacter limit the reproduction of their host, the freshwater ciliate Paramecium. Reproduction rates of infected strains of paramecia were significantly lower than those of genetically identical strains that had lost their parasites after treatment with an antibiotic. Interference competition occurs when infected paramecia release a toxic form of the parasitic bacterium that kills uninfected paramecia. In mixed cultures of infected and uninfected strains of either P tetraurelia or of P novaurelia, the infected strains outcompeted the uninfected strains. Infection of new host paramecia seems to be rare. Infection of new hosts was not observed in either mixtures of infected with uninfected strains, or after incubation of paramecia with isolated parasites. The competitive advantages of the host paramecia, in combination with their vegetative reproduction, makes infection of new hosts by the bacterial parasites unnecessary, and could be responsible for the continued existence of "killer paramecia" in nature. Caedibacter parasites are not a defensive adaptation. Feeding rates and reproduction of the predators Didinium nasutum (Ciliophora) and Amoeba proteus (Amoebozoa, Gymnamoebia) were not influenced by whether or not their paramecia prey were infected. Infection of the predators frequently occurred when they preyed on infected paramecia. Caedibacter-infected predators may influence competition between Paramecium strains by release of toxic parasites into the environment that are harmful to uninfected strains. PMID:12022275

  18. Is Concentrated Advantage the Cause? The Relative Contributions of Neighborhood Advantage and Disadvantage to Educational Inequality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Odis, Jr.

    2013-01-01

    Supported by persistent educational inequality and growth of the field of neighborhood effects research, this meta-analysis investigates the relative association of neighborhood advantage and disadvantage to educational outcomes; the consistency of associations across different educational indicators; and the moderating influence of model…

  19. [The precautionary principle: advantages and risks].

    PubMed

    Tubiana, M

    2001-04-01

    The extension of the precautionary principle to the field of healthcare is the social response to two demands of the population: improved health safety and the inclusion of an informed public in the decision-making process. The necessary balance between cost (treatment-induced risk) and benefit (therapeutic effect) underlies all healthcare decisions. An underestimation or an overestimation of cost, i.e. risk, is equally harmful in public healthcare. A vaccination should be prescribed when its beneficial effect outweighs its inevitable risk. Mandatory vaccination, such as in the case of the Hepatitis B virus, is a health policy requiring some courage because those who benefit will never be aware of its positive effect while those who are victims of the risk could resort to litigation. Defense against such accusations requires an accurate assessment of risk and benefit, which underlines the importance of expertise. Even within the framework of the precautionary principle, it is impossible to act without knowledge, or at least a plausible estimation, of expected effects. Recent affairs (blood contamination, transmissible spongiform encephalitis by growth hormone, and new variant of Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease) illustrate that in such cases the precautionary principle would have had limited impact and it is only when enough knowledge was available that effective action could be taken. Likewise, in current debates concerning the possible risks of electromagnetic fields, cellular phones and radon, research efforts must be given priority. The general public understands intuitively the concept of cost and benefit. For example, the possible health risks of oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy were not ignored, but the public has judged that their advantages justify the risk. Estimating risk and benefit and finding a balance between risk and preventive measures could help avoid the main drawbacks of the precautionary principle, i.e. inaction and refusal of

  20. Competitive advantage on a warming planet.

    PubMed

    Lash, Jonathan; Wellington, Fred

    2007-03-01

    Whether you're in a traditional smokestack industry or a "clean" business like investment banking, your company will increasingly feel the effects of climate change. Even people skeptical about global warming's dangers are recognizing that, simply because so many others are concerned, the phenomenon has wide-ranging implications. Investors already are discounting share prices of companies poorly positioned to compete in a warming world. Many businesses face higher raw material and energy costs as more and more governments enact policies placing a cost on emissions. Consumers are taking into account a company's environmental record when making purchasing decisions. There's also a burgeoning market in greenhouse gas emission allowances (the carbon market), with annual trading in these assets valued at tens of billions of dollars. Companies that manage and mitigate their exposure to the risks associated with climate change while seeking new opportunities for profit will generate a competitive advantage over rivals in a carbon-constrained future. This article offers a systematic approach to mapping and responding to climate change risks. According to Jonathan Lash and Fred Wellington of the World Resources Institute, an environmental think tank, the risks can be divided into six categories: regulatory (policies such as new emissions standards), products and technology (the development and marketing of climate-friendly products and services), litigation (lawsuits alleging environmental harm), reputational (how a company's environmental policies affect its brand), supply chain (potentially higher raw material and energy costs), and physical (such as an increase in the incidence of hurricanes). The authors propose a four-step process for responding to climate change risk: Quantify your company's carbon footprint; identify the risks and opportunities you face; adapt your business in response; and do it better than your competitors. PMID:17348173

  1. Competitive advantage on a warming planet.

    PubMed

    Lash, Jonathan; Wellington, Fred

    2007-03-01

    Whether you're in a traditional smokestack industry or a "clean" business like investment banking, your company will increasingly feel the effects of climate change. Even people skeptical about global warming's dangers are recognizing that, simply because so many others are concerned, the phenomenon has wide-ranging implications. Investors already are discounting share prices of companies poorly positioned to compete in a warming world. Many businesses face higher raw material and energy costs as more and more governments enact policies placing a cost on emissions. Consumers are taking into account a company's environmental record when making purchasing decisions. There's also a burgeoning market in greenhouse gas emission allowances (the carbon market), with annual trading in these assets valued at tens of billions of dollars. Companies that manage and mitigate their exposure to the risks associated with climate change while seeking new opportunities for profit will generate a competitive advantage over rivals in a carbon-constrained future. This article offers a systematic approach to mapping and responding to climate change risks. According to Jonathan Lash and Fred Wellington of the World Resources Institute, an environmental think tank, the risks can be divided into six categories: regulatory (policies such as new emissions standards), products and technology (the development and marketing of climate-friendly products and services), litigation (lawsuits alleging environmental harm), reputational (how a company's environmental policies affect its brand), supply chain (potentially higher raw material and energy costs), and physical (such as an increase in the incidence of hurricanes). The authors propose a four-step process for responding to climate change risk: Quantify your company's carbon footprint; identify the risks and opportunities you face; adapt your business in response; and do it better than your competitors.

  2. Fluorescence advantages with microscopic spatiotemporal control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goswami, Debabrata; Roy, Debjit; De, Arijit K.

    2013-03-01

    We present a clever design concept of using femtosecond laser pulses in microscopy by selective excitation or de-excitation of one fluorophore over the other overlapping one. Using either a simple pair of femtosecond pulses with variable delay or using a train of laser pulses at 20-50 Giga-Hertz excitation, we show controlled fluorescence excitation or suppression of one of the fluorophores with respect to the other through wave-packet interference, an effect that prevails even after the fluorophore coherence timescale. Such an approach can be used both under the single-photon excitation as well as in the multi-photon excitation conditions resulting in effective higher spatial resolution. Such high spatial resolution advantage with broadband-pulsed excitation is of immense benefit to multi-photon microscopy and can also be an effective detection scheme for trapped nanoparticles with near-infrared light. Such sub-diffraction limit trapping of nanoparticles is challenging and a two-photon fluorescence diagnostics allows a direct observation of a single nanoparticle in a femtosecond high-repetition rate laser trap, which promises new directions to spectroscopy at the single molecule level in solution. The gigantic peak power of femtosecond laser pulses at high repetition rate, even at low average powers, provide huge instantaneous gradient force that most effectively result in a stable optical trap for spatial control at sub-diffraction limit. Such studies have also enabled us to explore simultaneous control of internal and external degrees of freedom that require coupling of various control parameters to result in spatiotemporal control, which promises to be a versatile tool for the microscopic world.

  3. Proton Radiotherapy for Liver Tumors: Dosimetric Advantages Over Photon Plans

    SciTech Connect

    Wang Xiaochun Krishnan, Sunil; Zhang Xiaodong; Dong Lei; Briere, Tina; Crane, Christopher H.; Martel, Mary; Gillin, Michael; Mohan, Radhe; Beddar, Sam

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of the study is to dosimetrically investigate the advantages of proton radiotherapy over photon radiotherapy for liver tumors. The proton plan and the photon plan were designed using commercial treatment planning systems. The treatment target dose conformity and heterogeneity and dose-volume analyses of normal structures were compared between proton and photon radiotherapy for 9 patients with liver tumors. Proton radiotherapy delivered a more conformal target dose with slightly less homogeneity when compared with photon radiotherapy. Protons significantly reduced the fractional volume of liver receiving dose greater or equal to 30 Gy (V{sub 30}) and the mean liver dose. The stomach and duodenal V{sub 45} were significantly lower with the use of proton radiotherapy. The V{sub 40} and V{sub 50} of the heart and the maximum spinal cord dose were also significantly lower with the use of proton radiotherapy. Protons were better able to spare one kidney completely and deliver less dose to one (generally the left) kidney than photons. The mean dose to the total body and most critical structures was significantly decreased using protons when compared to corresponding photon plans. In conclusion, our study suggests the dosimetric benefits of proton radiotherapy over photon radiotherapy. These dosimetric advantages of proton plans may permit further dose escalation with lower risk of complications.

  4. Practices of Weight Regulation Among Elite Athletes in Combat Sports: A Matter of Mental Advantage?

    PubMed Central

    Pettersson, Stefan; Ekström, Marianne Pipping; Berg, Christina M

    2013-01-01

    Context The combination of extensive weight loss and inadequate nutritional strategies used to lose weight rapidly for competition in weight-category sports may negatively affect athletic performance and health. Objective To explore the reasoning of elite combat-sport athletes about rapid weight loss and regaining of weight before competitions. Design Qualitative study. Setting With grounded theory as a theoretical framework, we employed a cross-examinational approach including interviews, observations, and Internet sources. Sports observations were obtained at competitions and statements by combat-sport athletes were collected on the Internet. Patients or Other Participants Participants in the interviews were 14 Swedish national team athletes (9 men, 5 women; age range, 18 to 36 years) in 3 Olympic combat sports (wrestling, judo, and taekwondo). Data Collection and Analysis Semistructured interviews with 14 athletes from the Swedish national teams in wrestling, judo, and taekwondo were conducted at a location of each participant's choice. The field observations were conducted at European competitions in these 3 sports. In addition, interviews and statements made by athletes in combat sports were collected on the Internet. Results Positive aspects of weight regulation other than gaining physical advantage emerged from the data during the analysis: sport identity, mental diversion, and mental advantage. Together and individually, these categories point toward the positive aspects of weight regulation experienced by the athletes. Practicing weight regulation mediates a self-image of being “a real athlete.” Weight regulation is also considered mentally important as a part of the precompetition preparation, serving as a coping strategy by creating a feeling of increased focus and commitment. Moreover, a mental advantage relative to one's opponents can be gained through the practice of weight regulation. Conclusions Weight regulation has mentally important functions

  5. Advantages of coherent antistokes Raman scattering (CARS) in environmental monitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paetzold, Ralf; Voss, Eberhard; de Vries, Thorsten; Darpel, H.; Anders, Angelika

    1999-09-01

    The objective of this investigation was to develop a fast method for the in-situ characterization of chemicals solved in water based on Coherent Antistokes Raman Scattering (CARS). In order to test the potential of CARS as a tool for the in-situ spectroscopy scanning and multiplex CARS techniques were investigated. Polarization CARS (PCARS) was used to reduce the nonvibrational resonant signal generated by the electron cloud of the solvent molecules. The spectra of some alcohols and pollutants such as pyridine, nitrate and sulfate were investigated. Computer simulations were applied for the evaluation of the CARS spectra. The most evident advantage of CARS in comparison with other Raman methods is the very short time to achieve a spectrum. The shortest time to get a spectrum is limited by the length of the laser pulse (e.g. 5 ns). In addition no sample preparation is necessary.

  6. Multilayer reticles: advantages and challenges for 28nm chip making

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hotzel, Arthur; Seltmann, Rolf; Busch, Jens; Cotte, Eric

    2011-03-01

    Chip manufacturing with multilayer reticles offers the possibility to reduce reticle cost at the expense of scanner throughput, and is therefore an attractive option for small-volume production and test chips. Since 2010, GLOBALFOUNDRIES Fab 1 uses this option for the 28nm IP shuttles and test chips offered to their customers for development and advance testing of their products. This paper discusses the advantages and challenges of this approach and the practical experience gained during implementation. One issue that must be considered is the influence of the small image field and the asymmetric reticle illumination on the lithographic key parameters, namely layer to layer overlay. Theoretical considerations and experimental data concerning the effects of lens distortion, lens heating, and reticle heating on overlay performance are presented, and concepts to address the specific challenges of multilayer reticles for high-end chip production are discussed.

  7. Advantages of a polycentric approach to climate change policy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cole, Daniel H.

    2015-02-01

    Lack of progress in global climate negotiations has led scholars to reconsider polycentric approaches to climate policy. Several examples of subglobal mechanisms to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions have been touted, but it remains unclear why they might achieve better climate outcomes than global negotiations alone. Decades of work conducted by researchers associated with the Vincent and Elinor Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis at Indiana University have emphasized two chief advantages of polycentric approaches over monocentric ones: they provide more opportunities for experimentation and learning to improve policies over time, and they increase communications and interactions -- formal and informal, bilateral and multilateral -- among parties to help build the mutual trust needed for increased cooperation. A wealth of theoretical, empirical and experimental evidence supports the polycentric approach.

  8. Underground nuclear energy complexes - technical and economic advantages

    SciTech Connect

    Myers, Carl W; Kunze, Jay F; Giraud, Kellen M; Mahar, James M

    2010-01-01

    Underground nuclear power plant parks have been projected to be economically feasible compared to above ground instalIations. This paper includes a thorough cost analysis of the savings, compared to above ground facilities, resulting from in-place entombment (decommissioning) of facilities at the end of their life. reduced costs of security for the lifetime of the various facilities in the underground park. reduced transportation costs. and reduced costs in the operation of the waste storage complex (also underground). compared to the fair share of the costs of operating a national waste repository.

  9. Advantages and Disadvantages of Different Methods of Hospitals' Downsizing: A Narrative Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Mousazadeh, Yalda; Jannati, Ali; Jabbari Beiramy, Hossein; AsghariJafarabadi, Mohammad; Ebadi, Ali

    2013-01-01

    Background: Hospitals as key actors in health systems face growing pres­sures especially cost cutting and search for costeffective ways to resources management. Downsizing is one of these ways. This study was conducted to identify advantages and disadvantages of different methods of hospital' downsizing. Methods:The search was conducted in databases of Medlib, SID, Pub Med, Science Direct and Google Scholar Meta search engine by keywords of Downsizing, Hospital Downsizing, Hospital Rightsizing, Hospital Restructuring, Staff Downsizing, Hospital Merging, Hospital Reorganization and the Persian equivalents. Resulted 815 articles were studied and refined step by step. Finally, 27 articles were selected for analysis. Results: Five hospital downsizing methods were identified during searching. These methods were reducing the number of employees and beds, outsourcing, integration of hospital units, and the combination of these methods. The most important benefits were cost reduction, increasing patient satisfaction, increasing home care and outpatient services. The most important disadvantage included reducing access, reducing the rate of hospital admissions and increasing employees’ workload and dissatisfaction. Conclusion: Each downsizing method has strengths and weaknesses. Using different methods of downsizing, according to circumstances and applying appropriate interventions after implementation, is necessary for promotion. PMID:24688978

  10. Red Dirt Thinking on Remote Educational Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guenther, John; Bat, Melodie; Osborne, Sam

    2014-01-01

    The discourse of remote education is often characterised by a rhetoric of disadvantage. This is reflected in statistics that on the surface seem unambiguous in their demonstration of poor outcomes for remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. A range of data support this view, including National Assessment Program-Literacy and…

  11. BIOREACTOR LANDFILLS, THEORETICAL ADVANTAGES AND RESEARCH CHALLENGES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Bioreactor landfills are municipal solid waste landfills that utilize bulk liquids in an effort to accelerate solid waste degradation. There are few potential benefits for operating a MSW landfill as a bioreactor. These include leachate treatment and management, increase in the s...

  12. The Arts: A Competitive Advantage for California.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    KPMG Peat Marwick, Washington, DC. Policy Economic Group.

    This 1993 study attempts to define the size and scope of state-wide economic activity generated by the arts in California. The analysis is based on data from surveys of nonprofit arts organization and five case studies. The case studies, which provided context for the core research, include examinations of: (1) artists in Los Angeles County; (2)…

  13. Advantages of Being Disadvantaged: A Paradox.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moses, E. Gnanaraj

    1985-01-01

    Explores factors that can enable children reared in impoverished environments to use their conditions of adversity to succeed. Discusses essential components to development of achievement motivation, including innate potential; family ties and roots; creative manipulation of the environment; expectations; and the roles of religion, parents, and…

  14. Taking Full Advantage of Children's Literature

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Serafini, Frank

    2012-01-01

    Teachers need a deeper understanding of the texts being discussed, in particular the various textual and visual aspects of picturebooks themselves, including the images, written text and design elements, to support how readers made sense of these texts. As teachers become familiar with aspects of literary criticism, art history, visual grammar,…

  15. Electrophysiological explorations of the bilingual advantage: evidence from a Stroop task.

    PubMed

    Coderre, Emily L; van Heuven, Walter J B

    2014-01-01

    Bilinguals have been shown to exhibit a performance advantage on executive control tasks, outperforming their monolingual counterparts. Although a wealth of research has investigated this 'bilingual advantage' behaviourally, electrophysiological correlates are lacking. Using EEG with a Stroop task that manipulated the stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) of word and colour presentation, the current study addressed two facets of the bilingual advantage. The possibility that bilinguals experience superior conflict processing relative to monolinguals (a 'conflict-specific advantage') was investigated by comparing behavioural interference effects as well as the amplitude of the Ninc, a conflict-related ERP component occurring from approximately 300-500 ms after the onset of conflict. In contrast, the hypothesis that bilinguals experience domain-general, conflict-independent enhancements in executive processing (a 'non-conflict-specific advantage') was evaluated by comparing the control condition (symbol strings) between groups. There was some significant, but inconsistent, evidence for a conflict-specific bilingual advantage. In contrast, strong evidence emerged for a non-conflict-specific advantage, with bilinguals demonstrating faster RTs and reduced ERP amplitudes on control trials compared to monolinguals. Importantly, when the control stimulus was presented before the colour, ERPs to control trials revealed group differences before the onset of conflict, suggesting differences in the ability to ignore or suppress distracting irrelevant information. This indicates that bilinguals experience superior executive processing even in the absence of conflict and semantic salience, and suggests that the advantage extends to more efficient proactive management of the environment.

  16. Kinetic advantage of controlled intermediate nuclear fusion

    SciTech Connect

    Guo Xiaoming

    2012-09-26

    The dominated process of controlled fusion is to let nuclei gain enough kinetic energy to overcome Coulomb barrier. As a result, a fusion scheme can consider two factors in its design: to increase kinetic energy of nuclei and to alter the Coulomb barrier. Cold Fusion and Hot fusion are all one-factor schemes while Intermediate Fusion is a twofactors scheme. This made CINF kinetically superior. Cold Fusion reduces deuteron-deuteron distance, addressing Coulomb barrier, and Hot Fusion heat up plasma into extreme high temperature, addressing kinetic energy. Without enough kinetic energy made Cold Fusion skeptical. Extreme high temperature made Hot Fusion very difficult to engineer. Because CIFN addresses both factors, CIFN is a more promising technique to be industrialized.

  17. Kinetic advantage of controlled intermediate nuclear fusion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Xiaoming

    2012-09-01

    The dominated process of controlled fusion is to let nuclei gain enough kinetic energy to overcome Coulomb barrier. As a result, a fusion scheme can consider two factors in its design: to increase kinetic energy of nuclei and to alter the Coulomb barrier. Cold Fusion and Hot fusion are all one-factor schemes while Intermediate Fusion is a twofactors scheme. This made CINF kinetically superior. Cold Fusion reduces deuteron-deuteron distance, addressing Coulomb barrier, and Hot Fusion heat up plasma into extreme high temperature, addressing kinetic energy. Without enough kinetic energy made Cold Fusion skeptical. Extreme high temperature made Hot Fusion very difficult to engineer. Because CIFN addresses both factors, CIFN is a more promising technique to be industrialized.

  18. Home advantage in retractable-roof baseball stadia.

    PubMed

    Romanowich, Paul

    2012-10-01

    This study examined whether the home advantage varies for open-air, domed, or retractable-roof baseball stadia, and whether having the roof open or closed affects the home advantage in retractable-roof baseball stadia. Data from Major League Baseball (MLB) games played between 2001 and 2009 were analyzed for whether or not the presence of a home-advantage was dependent on the type of home stadium used. Home advantage was robust for all three types of stadia. A significant effect of stadium type on home advantage was found, with a greater home advantage for teams playing home games in domed stadia relative to open-air stadia, replicating a previous study. There was a greater home advantage for teams playing home games in domed stadia relative to retractable-roof stadia. No other differences in the home advantage were found; results are discussed in terms of familiarity with the facility.

  19. On the evolutionary advantage of fitness-associated recombination.

    PubMed Central

    Hadany, Lilach; Beker, Tuvik

    2003-01-01

    The adaptive value of recombination remains something of a puzzle. One of the basic problems is that recombination not only creates new and advantageous genetic combinations, but also breaks down existing good ones. A negative correlation between the fitness of an individual and its recombination rate would result in prolonged integrity of fitter genetic combinations while enabling less fit ones to produce new combinations. Such a correlation could be mediated by various factors, including stress responses, age, or direct DNA damage. For haploid population models, we show that an allele for such fitness-associated recombination (FAR) can spread both in asexual populations and in populations reproducing sexually at any uniform recombination rate. FAR also carries an advantage for the population as a whole, resulting in a higher average fitness at mutation-selection balance. These results are demonstrated in populations adapting to new environments as well as in well-adapted populations coping with deleterious mutations. Current experimental results providing evidence for the existence of FAR in nature are discussed. PMID:14704195

  20. Child center closures: Does nonprofit status provide a comparative advantage?

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Marcus; Klein, Sacha; Freisthler, Bridget; Weiss, Robert E.

    2013-01-01

    Reliable access to dependable, high quality childcare services is a vital concern for large numbers of American families. The childcare industry consists of private nonprofit, private for-profit, and governmental providers that differ along many dimensions, including quality, clientele served, and organizational stability. Nonprofit providers are theorized to provide higher quality services given comparative tax advantages, higher levels of consumer trust, and management by mission driven entrepreneurs. This study examines the influence of ownership structure, defined as nonprofit, for-profit sole proprietors, for-profit companies, and governmental centers, on organizational instability, defined as childcare center closures. Using a cross sectional data set of 15724 childcare licenses in California for 2007, we model the predicted closures of childcare centers as a function of ownership structure as well as center age and capacity. Findings indicate that for small centers (capacity of 30 or less) nonprofits are more likely to close, but for larger centers (capacity 30+) nonprofits are less likely to close. This suggests that the comparative advantages available for nonprofit organizations may be better utilized by larger centers than by small centers. We consider the implications of our findings for parents, practitioners, and social policy. PMID:23543882

  1. Child center closures: Does nonprofit status provide a comparative advantage?

    PubMed

    Lam, Marcus; Klein, Sacha; Freisthler, Bridget; Weiss, Robert E

    2013-03-01

    Reliable access to dependable, high quality childcare services is a vital concern for large numbers of American families. The childcare industry consists of private nonprofit, private for-profit, and governmental providers that differ along many dimensions, including quality, clientele served, and organizational stability. Nonprofit providers are theorized to provide higher quality services given comparative tax advantages, higher levels of consumer trust, and management by mission driven entrepreneurs. This study examines the influence of ownership structure, defined as nonprofit, for-profit sole proprietors, for-profit companies, and governmental centers, on organizational instability, defined as childcare center closures. Using a cross sectional data set of 15724 childcare licenses in California for 2007, we model the predicted closures of childcare centers as a function of ownership structure as well as center age and capacity. Findings indicate that for small centers (capacity of 30 or less) nonprofits are more likely to close, but for larger centers (capacity 30+) nonprofits are less likely to close. This suggests that the comparative advantages available for nonprofit organizations may be better utilized by larger centers than by small centers. We consider the implications of our findings for parents, practitioners, and social policy.

  2. Systems neuroscience in Drosophila: Conceptual and technical advantages.

    PubMed

    Kazama, H

    2015-06-18

    The fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster is ideally suited for investigating the neural circuit basis of behavior. Due to the simplicity and genetic tractability of the fly brain, neurons and circuits are identifiable across animals. Additionally, a large set of transgenic lines has been developed with the aim of specifically labeling small subsets of neurons and manipulating them in sophisticated ways. Electrophysiology and imaging can be applied in behaving individuals to examine the computations performed by each neuron, and even the entire population of relevant neurons in a particular region, because of the small size of the brain. Moreover, a rich repertoire of behaviors that can be studied is expanding to include those requiring cognitive abilities. Thus, the fly brain is an attractive system in which to explore both computations and mechanisms underlying behavior at levels spanning from genes through neurons to circuits. This review summarizes the advantages Drosophila offers in achieving this objective. A recent neurophysiology study on olfactory behavior is also introduced to demonstrate the effectiveness of these advantages.

  3. Child center closures: Does nonprofit status provide a comparative advantage?

    PubMed

    Lam, Marcus; Klein, Sacha; Freisthler, Bridget; Weiss, Robert E

    2013-03-01

    Reliable access to dependable, high quality childcare services is a vital concern for large numbers of American families. The childcare industry consists of private nonprofit, private for-profit, and governmental providers that differ along many dimensions, including quality, clientele served, and organizational stability. Nonprofit providers are theorized to provide higher quality services given comparative tax advantages, higher levels of consumer trust, and management by mission driven entrepreneurs. This study examines the influence of ownership structure, defined as nonprofit, for-profit sole proprietors, for-profit companies, and governmental centers, on organizational instability, defined as childcare center closures. Using a cross sectional data set of 15724 childcare licenses in California for 2007, we model the predicted closures of childcare centers as a function of ownership structure as well as center age and capacity. Findings indicate that for small centers (capacity of 30 or less) nonprofits are more likely to close, but for larger centers (capacity 30+) nonprofits are less likely to close. This suggests that the comparative advantages available for nonprofit organizations may be better utilized by larger centers than by small centers. We consider the implications of our findings for parents, practitioners, and social policy. PMID:23543882

  4. Advantages of polymer transducers in high frequency inspections

    SciTech Connect

    Samari, S.; Stanton, M.

    1993-12-31

    Since the discovery of piezoelectricity in PVDF in 1969 the polymer transducers have now emerged as a significant tool in many ultrasonic inspections that otherwise would have been very difficult or impossible for conventional ceramic transducers. The major advantage, of Polymer transducers is in their inherent broadband characteristics in immersion applications which leads to their superior resolution and improved signal to noise ration over conventional ceramic transducers. This paper will show empirical results of high frequency polymer transducer in inspection of different materials including engineering materials such as ceramics. Other advantages of the polymer transducers are their low acoustic impedance as well as the compliance of the plastic material during construction. The compliance of the plastic PVDF film allows the manufacture of the high frequency polymer transducers without the use of permanent delays which can interfere with ultrasonic measurements. This paper will also give experimental results that will show how polymer transducers are instrument dependent, and how an operator can achieve optimum results by using an impedance matching network between the instrument and the polymer transducer.

  5. [The advantages and limitations of observational studies].

    PubMed

    Onder, Graziano

    2013-03-01

    Randomized clinical trials are considered the gold standard for establishing treatment efficacy and generate evidence-based medicine. Nonetheless, because of the stringent exclusion criteria used in selecting study populations, concerns are raised about the limited generalizability of evidence they provide. Indeed, randomized clinical trials assess treatment efficacy for an "average" patient, quite often far from older adults characterized by chronic comorbidities of different severity, or by functional and/or cognitive impairment. Observational studies have been proposed as alternative means of testing intervention effectiveness in older populations with multifaceted problems. Unlike randomized clinical trials, they assess outcomes in regular clinical practice, thereby reflecting real adherence to treatment/intervention. The availability of huge, high quality databases offers the potential to bring research closer to practice and audit. Databases provide fertile grounds for observational studies, and can generate hypotheses and provide ready access to trialists as well, setting new possibilities for epidemiological research. They must include complete data on all consecutive patients, use standard definitions of conditions and outcomes, and include all clinical characteristics likely to affect outcomes. In addition, their potential for research and audit is greatly enhanced by linking to other databases, like the census ones, which allow evaluation of geographical and contextual information.

  6. Multi-core advantages for mask data preparation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeap, Johnny; Nogatch, John

    2009-04-01

    Smaller design pattern feature sizes continue to increase mask data file sizes, which increases mask data processing (MDP) times. To satisfy the need for faster turn-around-time, MDP has progressively migrated from single-computer computation, to multi-threading, and then to distributed processing on multiple computers. The availability of low cost multi-core processors can be used advantageously to reduce Mask Data Preparation runtime. Compared to single core processors, multi-core processor have higher performance, however, total available memory and I/O bandwidth need to be increased proportionally with the additional cores. Memory per core and available I/O bandwidth limit the maximum number of cores that can be effective with distributed processing. When a single job is broken down to 2 or more tasks, the granularity of the tasks influences the efficiency of the processing. Smaller tasks allow for smaller memory footprint, better distribution of tasks and increased scalability, but increase input file access time and reduce output data compaction. By choosing a combination of multi-threading and distributed processing, faster run-time and better scalability can be achieved, as compared to either technique alone. The optimal configuration depends on the number of cores per processor, number of processors and memory per core.

  7. [Communication server in the hospital--advantages, expenses and limitations].

    PubMed

    Jendrysiak, U

    1997-01-01

    The common situation in a hospital with multiple departments is a heterogeneous set of subsystems, one or more for each department. Today, we have a rising number of requests for an information interchange between these independent systems. The exchange of patients data has a technical and a conceptional part. Establishing a connection between more than two subsystems requires links from one system to all the others, each of them with its own code translation, interface and message transfer. A communication server is an important tool for significantly reducing the amount of work for the technical realisation. It reduces the number of interfaces, facilitates the definition, maintenance and documentation of the message structure and translation tables and helps to keep control on the message pipelines. Existing interfaces can be adapted for similar purposes. Anyway, a communication server needs a lot of configuration and it is necessary to know about low-level internetworking on different hard- and software to take advantage of its features. The code for writing files on a remote system and for process communication via TCP/IP sockets or similar techniques has to be written specifically for each communication task. There are first experiences in the university school of medicine in Mainz setting up a communication server to connect different departments. We also made a checklist for the selection of such a product. PMID:9381841

  8. The competitive advantage of corporate philanthropy.

    PubMed

    Porter, Michael E; Kramer, Mark R

    2002-12-01

    When it comes to philanthropy, executives increasingly see themselves as caught between critics demanding ever higher levels of "corporate social responsibility" and investors applying pressure to maximize short-term profits. In response, many companies have sought to make their giving more strategic, but what passes for strategic philanthropy is almost never truly strategic, and often isn't particularly effective as philanthropy. Increasingly, philanthropy is used as a form of public relations or advertising, promoting a company's image through high-profile sponsorships. But there is a more truly strategic way to think about philanthropy. Corporations can use their charitable efforts to improve their competitive context--the quality of the business environment in the locations where they operate. Using philanthropy to enhance competitive context aligns social and economic goals and improves a company's long-term business prospects. Addressing context enables a company to not only give money but also leverage its capabilities and relationships in support of charitable causes. The produces social benefits far exceeding those provided by individual donors, foundations, or even governments. Taking this new direction requires fundamental changes in the way companies approach their contribution programs. For example, philanthropic investments can improve education and local quality of life in ways that will benefit the company. Such investments can also improve the company's competitiveness by contributing to expanding the local market and helping to reduce corruption in the local business environment. Adopting a context-focused approach goes against the grain of current philanthropic practice, and it requires a far more disciplined approach than is prevalent today. But it can make a company's philanthropic activities far more effective. PMID:12510538

  9. The competitive advantage of corporate philanthropy.

    PubMed

    Porter, Michael E; Kramer, Mark R

    2002-12-01

    When it comes to philanthropy, executives increasingly see themselves as caught between critics demanding ever higher levels of "corporate social responsibility" and investors applying pressure to maximize short-term profits. In response, many companies have sought to make their giving more strategic, but what passes for strategic philanthropy is almost never truly strategic, and often isn't particularly effective as philanthropy. Increasingly, philanthropy is used as a form of public relations or advertising, promoting a company's image through high-profile sponsorships. But there is a more truly strategic way to think about philanthropy. Corporations can use their charitable efforts to improve their competitive context--the quality of the business environment in the locations where they operate. Using philanthropy to enhance competitive context aligns social and economic goals and improves a company's long-term business prospects. Addressing context enables a company to not only give money but also leverage its capabilities and relationships in support of charitable causes. The produces social benefits far exceeding those provided by individual donors, foundations, or even governments. Taking this new direction requires fundamental changes in the way companies approach their contribution programs. For example, philanthropic investments can improve education and local quality of life in ways that will benefit the company. Such investments can also improve the company's competitiveness by contributing to expanding the local market and helping to reduce corruption in the local business environment. Adopting a context-focused approach goes against the grain of current philanthropic practice, and it requires a far more disciplined approach than is prevalent today. But it can make a company's philanthropic activities far more effective.

  10. Back to Basics: A Bilingual Advantage in Infant Visual Habituation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Singh, Leher; Fu, Charlene S. L.; Rahman, Aishah A.; Hameed, Waseem B.; Sanmugam, Shamini; Agarwal, Pratibha; Jiang, Binyan; Chong, Yap Seng; Meaney, Michael J.; Rifkin-Graboi, Anne

    2015-01-01

    Comparisons of cognitive processing in monolinguals and bilinguals have revealed a bilingual advantage in inhibitory control. Recent studies have demonstrated advantages associated with exposure to two languages in infancy. However, the domain specificity and scope of the infant bilingual advantage in infancy remains unclear. In the present study,…

  11. Cost reduction advantages of CAD/CAM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parsons, G. T.

    1983-05-01

    Features of the CAD/CAM system implemented at the General Dynamics Convair division are summarized. CAD/CAM was initiated in 1976 to enhance engineering, manufacturing and quality assurance and thereby the company's competitive bidding position. Numerical models are substituted for hardware models wherever possible and numerical criteria are defined in design for guiding computer-controlled parts manufacturing machines. The system comprises multiple terminals, a data base, digitizer, printers, disk and tape drives, and graphics displays. The applications include the design and manufacture of parts and components for avionics, structures, scientific investigations, and aircraft structural components. Interfaces with other computers allow structural analyses by finite element codes. Although time savings have not been gained compared to manual drafting, components of greater complexity than could have been designed by hand have been designed and manufactured.

  12. Advantages of diabetic tractional retinal detachment repair

    PubMed Central

    Sternfeld, Amir; Axer-Siegel, Ruth; Stiebel-Kalish, Hadas; Weinberger, Dov; Ehrlich, Rita

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To evaluate the outcomes and complications of patients with diabetic tractional retinal detachment (TRD) treated with pars plana vitrectomy (PPV). Patients and methods We retrospectively studied a case series of 24 eyes of 21 patients at a single tertiary, university-affiliated medical center. A review was carried out on patients who underwent PPV for the management of TRD due to proliferative diabetic retinopathy from October 2011 to November 2013. Preoperative and final visual outcomes, intraoperative and postoperative complications, and medical background were evaluated. Results A 23 G instrumentation was used in 23 eyes (95.8%), and a 25 G instrumentation in one (4.2%). Mean postoperative follow-up time was 13.3 months (4–30 months). Visual acuity significantly improved from logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution (LogMAR) 1.48 to LogMAR 1.05 (P<0.05). Visual acuity improved by ≥3 lines in 75% of patients. Intraoperative complications included iatrogenic retinal breaks in seven eyes (22.9%) and vitreal hemorrhage in nine eyes (37.5%). In two eyes, one sclerotomy was enlarged to 20 G (8.3%). Postoperative complications included reoperation in five eyes (20.8%) due to persistent subretinal fluid (n=3), vitreous hemorrhage (n=1), and dislocated intraocular lens (n=1). Thirteen patients (54.2%) had postoperative vitreous hemorrhage that cleared spontaneously, five patients (20.8%) required antiglaucoma medications for increased intraocular pressure, seven patients (29.2%) developed an epiretinal membrane, and two patients (8.3%) developed a macular hole. Conclusion Patients with diabetic TRD can benefit from PPV surgery. Intraoperative and postoperative complications can be attributed to the complexity of this disease. PMID:26604667

  13. The advantages of small-size focus in ultrasound surgery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dehui, Li; Guofeng, Shen; Jinfeng, Bai; Yazhu, Chen

    2012-10-01

    The near-field heating which easily occurs in ultrasound surgery is mainly due to the long axial intensity distribution, -6dB intensity length of which is larger than 10 mm. In this paper, we investigated the advantages of a small-size focus with -6dB intensity dimensions of 1 (transverse)×4.5(axial) mm. First, the near-field safety and treatment efficiency were shown to be improved. A 5×5×5 mm3 target was simulated using this small-size focus with 1 mm focal spacing. The consecutive sonications were applied without cooling intervals, and duration of each spot was 2 s under ultrasonic intensity of 200 W/cm2. The lesion was well conformed to simulated target with 89.6% coverage index and 11.8% external volume index, and peak temperature in the plane (1 cm before focal plane) was 40.5°C, showing it was safe. Meanwhile the treatment time was decreased due to continuous sonication. Another advantage of small-size focus is that it can reduce the possibility of bone burning at the far field. Assumed that the muscle-bone interface located 1 cm after the focal plane, the specific absorption rate at the bone interface were 0.25 and 1.28 times the that of focal plane for the small-size focus and commonsize focus (-6dB intensity axial width of 12.5 mm), respectively. So the small-size focus shows superiority in ultrasound surgery.

  14. Problem-based learning: description, advantages, disadvantages, scenarios and facilitation.

    PubMed

    Jones, R W

    2006-08-01

    Problem-based learning arose out of educational initiatives in the 1960s and is often one of the most contentious issues within medical education. McMaster University in Canada was the first to implement problem-based learning on a large scale within medicine and this was soon followed by universities in Europe and Australia. In modern times, few western medical schools do not include at least some aspect of problem-based learning within their instructional itinerary, and many build their entire curriculum and instructional procedures around problem-based learning. This article provides an overview of problem-based learning within medical education, pertinent background, describes the characteristics of problem-based learning, its advantages and disadvantages, problem-based learning scenarios and facilitation.

  15. Advantages and limitations of genomics in prokaryotic taxonomy.

    PubMed

    Sentausa, E; Fournier, P-E

    2013-09-01

    Taxonomic classification is an important field of microbiology, as it enables scientists to identify prokaryotes worldwide. Although the current classification system is still based on the one designed by Carolus Linnaeus, the currently available genomic content of several thousands of sequenced prokaryotic genomes represents a unique source of taxonomic information that should not be ignored. In addition, the development of faster, cheaper and improved sequencing methods has made genomics a tool that has a place in the workflow of a routine microbiology laboratory. Thus, genomics has reached a stage where it may be used in prokaryotic taxonomic classification, with criteria such as the genome index of average nucleotide identity being an alternative to DNA-DNA hybridization. However, several hurdles remain, including the lack of genomic sequences of many prokaryotic taxonomic representatives, and consensus procedures to describe new prokaryotic taxa that do not, as yet, accommodate genomic data. We herein review the advantages and disadvantages of using genomics in prokaryotic taxonomy.

  16. Advantages of catalytically de-waxed lubricant base oils

    SciTech Connect

    Schoonmaker, J.P.; Stiponavic, A.J.

    1996-10-01

    The production of base oils used in the formulation of lubricants involves the vacuum distillation of crude oil followed by a series of processing steps that improve physical and chemical properties including viscosity index and oxidative stability. An important stage in this process is the removal of linear parafins (wax) from the base oil which can crystalize causing poor flow properties at low temperatures. {open_quotes}De-waxing{close_quotes} may be accomplished using a solvent precipitation batch process (solvent de-waxing: SDW) or through a more modern continuous catalytic process (catalytic de-waxing: CDW) which offers many advantages. In general, catalytically de-waxed base oils exhibit improved low temperature fluidity which provides enhanced performance for transmission fluids and other lubricants required to operate efficiently at temperature reaching -40{degrees}C. A discussion of the molecular mechanisms involved in CDW and results of viscometric testing at low temperatures will be presented.

  17. Diagnostic and analytical mutation scanning of Cryptosporidium: utility and advantages.

    PubMed

    Jex, Aaron R; Gasser, Robin B

    2009-03-01

    Cryptosporidiosis is predominantly a disease of the alimentary tract of humans and other vertebrates, caused by parasitic protists of the genus Cryptosporidium. This disease, transmitted mainly via the fecal-oral route (in water or food), is of major socioeconomic importance globally. The diagnosis of cryptosporidiosis, including the genetic characterization of the different species, genotypes and subgenotypes (population variants) of Cryptosporidium, is crucial to prevention and control, particularly as there is no cost-effective treatment against this disease. Although traditional phenetic techniques have had major deficiencies for the specific diagnosis of cryptosporidiosis, there has been substantial progress in the establishment of molecular tools. In this article, we review key genetic markers used for the specific identification of Cryptosporidium, diagnosis of cryptosporidiosis and analysis of genetic variation in Cryptosporidium populations. We also discuss the advantages and disadvantages of selected techniques, and emphasize the benefits of utilizing rapid mutation scanning in achieving improved insights into the population genetics and epidemiology of Cryptosporidium.

  18. Advantages and limitations of genomics in prokaryotic taxonomy.

    PubMed

    Sentausa, E; Fournier, P-E

    2013-09-01

    Taxonomic classification is an important field of microbiology, as it enables scientists to identify prokaryotes worldwide. Although the current classification system is still based on the one designed by Carolus Linnaeus, the currently available genomic content of several thousands of sequenced prokaryotic genomes represents a unique source of taxonomic information that should not be ignored. In addition, the development of faster, cheaper and improved sequencing methods has made genomics a tool that has a place in the workflow of a routine microbiology laboratory. Thus, genomics has reached a stage where it may be used in prokaryotic taxonomic classification, with criteria such as the genome index of average nucleotide identity being an alternative to DNA-DNA hybridization. However, several hurdles remain, including the lack of genomic sequences of many prokaryotic taxonomic representatives, and consensus procedures to describe new prokaryotic taxa that do not, as yet, accommodate genomic data. We herein review the advantages and disadvantages of using genomics in prokaryotic taxonomy. PMID:23490121

  19. [Hepatic puncture biopsy in ambulatory care. Advantages and disadvantages].

    PubMed

    Nouel, O

    1997-03-01

    There is a clear trend towards favoring outpatient care in an attempt to control health care costs. Despite widespread acceptance in some countries, many teams in France still prefer to hospitalize patients requiring percutaneous liver biopsy because the outpatient setting has not been encouraged in French text books on hepatology, many gastroenterologists do not have access to outpatient facilities, and the lack of French references which has raised questions as to the legal responsibilities involved. The series of 231 outpatient percutaneous liver biopsies reported by Bourgaux in this issue of La Presse Médicale will remove the doubt in many minds. There are many advantages for the generally young population with early stage liver disease, frequently hepatitis C, requiring percutaneous liver biopsy. Lower cost is probably the primary advantage, but improved patient comfort, especially if repeated procedures are needed, is also greatly appreciated. The outpatient procedure is safe when all the selection criteria are met including: normal coagulation, ultrasonographically homogeneous liver, patient compliance and availability of a structured outpatient clinic, and absence of a severe concomitent disease. These apparently restrictive criteria actually include the majority of the indications for liver biopsy. There is another debate on whether echo-guided biopsy would be even safer but as emphasized by Bourgaux et al. this would require a reorganization of most of the hepatogastroenterology departments. One other point cannot be overlooked. Some operators (and patients) may also feel that the impressive nature of the procedure merits a more impressive setting, i.e. full hospitalization. Consequently, while it is quite reasonable to propose outpatient liver biopsy as a classical procedure, there are situations when personal preference may still dictate hospitalization.

  20. Shielding synchrotron light sources: Advantages of circular shield walls tunnels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer, S. L.; Ghosh, V. J.; Breitfeller, M.

    2016-08-01

    Third generation high brightness light sources are designed to have low emittance and high current beams, which contribute to higher beam loss rates that will be compensated by Top-Off injection. Shielding for these higher loss rates will be critical to protect the projected higher occupancy factors for the users. Top-Off injection requires a full energy injector, which will demand greater consideration of the potential abnormal beam miss-steering and localized losses that could occur. The high energy electron injection beam produce significantly higher neutron component dose to the experimental floor than lower energy injection and ramped operations. High energy neutrons produced in the forward direction from thin target beam losses are a major component of the dose rate outside the shield walls of the tunnel. The convention has been to provide thicker 90° ratchet walls to reduce this dose to the beam line users. We present an alternate circular shield wall design, which naturally and cost effectively increases the path length for this forward radiation in the shield wall and thereby substantially decreasing the dose rate for these beam losses. This shield wall design will greatly reduce the dose rate to the users working near the front end optical components but will challenge the beam line designers to effectively utilize the longer length of beam line penetration in the shield wall. Additional advantages of the circular shield wall tunnel are that it's simpler to construct, allows greater access to the insertion devices and the upstream in tunnel beam line components, as well as reducing the volume of concrete and therefore the cost of the shield wall.

  1. The metabolic advantage of tumor cells

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    1- Oncogenes express proteins of "Tyrosine kinase receptor pathways", a receptor family including insulin or IGF-Growth Hormone receptors. Other oncogenes alter the PP2A phosphatase brake over these kinases. 2- Experiments on pancreatectomized animals; treated with pure insulin or total pancreatic extracts, showed that choline in the extract, preserved them from hepatomas. Since choline is a methyle donor, and since methylation regulates PP2A, the choline protection may result from PP2A methylation, which then attenuates kinases. 3- Moreover, kinases activated by the boosted signaling pathway inactivate pyruvate kinase and pyruvate dehydrogenase. In addition, demethylated PP2A would no longer dephosphorylate these enzymes. A "bottleneck" between glycolysis and the oxidative-citrate cycle interrupts the glycolytic pyruvate supply now provided via proteolysis and alanine transamination. This pyruvate forms lactate (Warburg effect) and NAD+ for glycolysis. Lipolysis and fatty acids provide acetyl CoA; the citrate condensation increases, unusual oxaloacetate sources are available. ATP citrate lyase follows, supporting aberrant transaminations with glutaminolysis and tumor lipogenesis. Truncated urea cycles, increased polyamine synthesis, consume the methyl donor SAM favoring carcinogenesis. 4- The decrease of butyrate, a histone deacetylase inhibitor, elicits epigenic changes (PETEN, P53, IGFBP decrease; hexokinase, fetal-genes-M2, increase) 5- IGFBP stops binding the IGF - IGFR complex, it is perhaps no longer inherited by a single mitotic daughter cell; leading to two daughter cells with a mitotic capability. 6- An excess of IGF induces a decrease of the major histocompatibility complex MHC1, Natural killer lymphocytes should eliminate such cells that start the tumor, unless the fever prostaglandin PGE2 or inflammation, inhibit them... PMID:21649891

  2. Home advantage in speed skating: evidence from individual data.

    PubMed

    Koning, Ruud H

    2005-04-01

    Home advantage is a well-documented phenomenon in many sports. Home advantage has been shown to exist for team sports (soccer, hockey, football, baseball, basketball) and for countries organizing sports tournaments like the Olympics and World Cup Soccer. There is also some evidence for home advantage in some individual sports, but there is a much more limited literature. This paper addresses the issue of home advantage in speed skating. From a methodological point of view, it is difficult to identify home advantage, because skaters vary in their abilities and the conditions of tournaments vary. There is a small but significant home advantage using a generalized linear mixed model, with random effects for skaters and fixed effects for skating rinks and seasons. Even though the home advantage effect exists, it is very small when compared to variation in skating times due to differences of rinks and individual abilities.

  3. Does hydroxyapatite coating have no advantage over porous coating in primary total hip arthroplasty? A meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yun-Lin; Lin, Tiao; Liu, An; Shi, Ming-Min; Hu, Bin; Shi, Zhong-Li; Yan, Shi-Gui

    2015-01-28

    There are some arguments between the use of hydroxyapatite and porous coating. Some studies have shown that there is no difference between these two coatings in total hip arthroplasty (THA), while several other studies have shown that hydroxyapatite has advantages over the porous one. We have collected the studies in Pubmed, MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochrane library from the earliest possible years to present, with the search strategy of "(HA OR hydroxyapatite) AND ((total hip arthroplasty) OR (total hip replacement)) AND (RCT* OR randomiz* OR control* OR compar* OR trial*)". The randomized controlled trials and comparative observation trials that evaluated the clinical and radiographic effects between hydroxyapatite coating and porous coating were included. Our main outcome measurements were Harris hip score (HHS) and survival, while the secondary outcome measurements were osteolysis, radiolucent lines, and polyethylene wear. Twelve RCTs and 9 comparative observation trials were included. Hydroxyapatite coating could improve the HHS (p < 0.01), reduce the incidence of thigh pain (p = 0.01), and reduce the incidence of femoral osteolysis (p = 0.01), but hydroxyapatite coating had no advantages on survival (p = 0.32), polyethylene wear (p = 0.08), and radiolucent lines (p = 0.78). Hydroxyapatite coating has shown to have an advantage over porous coating. The HHS and survival was duration-dependent-if given the sufficient duration of follow-up, hydroxyapatite coating would be better than porous coating for the survival. The properties of hydroxyapatite and the implant design had influence on thigh pain incidence, femoral osteolysis, and polyethylene wear. Thickness of 50 to 80 μm and purity larger than 90% increased the thigh pain incidence. Anatomic design had less polyethylene wear.

  4. Disconnects between popular discourse and home advantage research: what can fans and media tell us about the home advantage phenomenon?

    PubMed

    Smith, D Randall

    2005-04-01

    Many of the factors identified as influencing the home advantage have an underlying social basis, presumably through the influence exerted by the home crowd. Beliefs in the home advantage and the causes of that advantage also have a social basis: sports coverage and fan discourse focus on some aspects of the phenomenon at the expense of others. This paper compares home advantage research with the use of the concept in media narratives and fan Intemet postings. While there are many similarities across sources, the findings suggest three major differences. Fans, and to a lesser extent the media, (1) focus almost exclusively on winning as the evidence for a home advantage, (2) see crowd noise as the main factor for the home advantage, and (3) treat the phenomenon as much more transient than is suggested by academic studies. I identify several features of the phenomenon that facilitate popular views of the home advantage and suggest how future research may benefit from incorporating those views.

  5. Advantages of using flat-panel LCD for projection displays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Dean C.

    1995-04-01

    The advantages of applying flat panel Liquid CRystal Displays (LCD) for Projection Displays will be extensively discussed. The selection and fabrication of flat panel LCD in order to meet the specific requirements of projection displays through various technologies will be suggested and explored in detail. The compact, flexible size and easy portability of flat panel LCDs are well known. For practical reasons, it is desirable to take advantages some of these useful properties in Projection Displays. With the recent popularity of large format display sizes, high information content and practicality all increases the demand of projection enlargement for high level performance and comfortable viewing. As a result, Projection Displays are becoming the chosen technological option for effective presentation of visual information. In general, the Liquid Crystal Light Valves (LCLV) used in Projection Displays are simply transmissive flat panel liquid crystal displays. For example at the low end, the monochromatic LCD projection panels are simply transmissive LCDs to be used in combination with laptops or PCs and light sources such as overhead projectors. These projection panels are getting popular for their portability, readability and low cost. However, due to the passive nature of the LCD used in these projector panels, the response time, contrast ratio and color gamut are relatively limited. Whether the newly developed Active Addressing technology will be able to improve the response time, contrast ratio and color gamut of these passive matrix LCDs remain to be proven. In the middle range of projection displays, Liquid Crystal Light Valves using color Active Matrix LCDs are rapidly replacing the dominant CRT based projectors. LCLVs have a number of advantages including portability, easy set-up and data readability. There are several new developments using single crystal, polysilicon as active matrix for LCDs with improved performance. Since single crystal active matrix

  6. Selenium utilization in thioredoxin and catalytic advantage provided by selenocysteine

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Moon-Jung; Lee, Byung Cheon; Hwang, Kwang Yeon; Gladyshev, Vadim N.; Kim, Hwa-Young

    2015-06-12

    Thioredoxin (Trx) is a major thiol-disulfide reductase that plays a role in many biological processes, including DNA replication and redox signaling. Although selenocysteine (Sec)-containing Trxs have been identified in certain bacteria, their enzymatic properties have not been characterized. In this study, we expressed a selenoprotein Trx from Treponema denticola, an oral spirochete, in Escherichia coli and characterized this selenoenzyme and its natural cysteine (Cys) homologue using E. coli Trx1 as a positive control. {sup 75}Se metabolic labeling and mutation analyses showed that the SECIS (Sec insertion sequence) of T. denticola selenoprotein Trx is functional in the E. coli Sec insertion system with specific selenium incorporation into the Sec residue. The selenoprotein Trx exhibited approximately 10-fold higher catalytic activity than the Sec-to-Cys version and natural Cys homologue and E. coli Trx1, suggesting that Sec confers higher catalytic activity on this thiol-disulfide reductase. Kinetic analysis also showed that the selenoprotein Trx had a 30-fold higher K{sub m} than Cys-containing homologues, suggesting that this selenoenzyme is adapted to work efficiently with high concentrations of substrate. Collectively, the results of this study support the hypothesis that selenium utilization in oxidoreductase systems is primarily due to the catalytic advantage provided by the rare amino acid, Sec. - Highlights: • The first characterization of a selenoprotein Trx is presented. • The selenoenzyme Trx exhibits 10-fold higher catalytic activity than Cys homologues. • Se utilization in Trx is primarily due to the catalytic advantage provided by Sec residue.

  7. Gene-environment studies: any advantage over environmental studies?

    PubMed

    Bermejo, Justo Lorenzo; Hemminki, Kari

    2007-07-01

    Gene-environment studies have been motivated by the likely existence of prevalent low-risk genes that interact with common environmental exposures. The present study assessed the statistical advantage of the simultaneous consideration of genes and environment to investigate the effect of environmental risk factors on disease. In particular, we contemplated the possibility that several genes modulate the environmental effect. Environmental exposures, genotypes and phenotypes were simulated according to a wide range of parameter settings. Different models of gene-gene-environment interaction were considered. For each parameter combination, we estimated the probability of detecting the main environmental effect, the power to identify the gene-environment interaction and the frequency of environmentally affected individuals at which environmental and gene-environment studies show the same statistical power. The proportion of cases in the population attributable to the modeled risk factors was also calculated. Our data indicate that environmental exposures with weak effects may account for a significant proportion of the population prevalence of the disease. A general result was that, if the environmental effect was restricted to rare genotypes, the power to detect the gene-environment interaction was higher than the power to identify the main environmental effect. In other words, when few individuals contribute to the overall environmental effect, individual contributions are large and result in easily identifiable gene-environment interactions. Moreover, when multiple genes interacted with the environment, the statistical benefit of gene-environment studies was limited to those studies that included major contributors to the gene-environment interaction. The advantage of gene-environment over plain environmental studies also depends on the inheritance mode of the involved genes, on the study design and, to some extend, on the disease prevalence.

  8. Principles and advantages of robotics in urologic surgery.

    PubMed

    Renda, Antonio; Vallancien, Guy

    2003-04-01

    Although the available minimally invasive surgical techniques (ie, laparoscopy) have clear advantages, these procedures continue to cause problems for patients. Surgical tools are limited by set axes of movement, restricting the degree of freedom available to the surgeon. In addition, depth perception is lost with the use of two-dimensional viewing systems. As surgeons view a "virtual" target on a television screen, they are hampered by decreased sensory input and a concurrent loss of dexterity. The development of robotic assistance systems in recent years could be the key to overcoming these difficulties. Using robotic systems, surgeons can experience a more natural and ergonomic surgical "feel." Surgical assistance, dexterity and precision enhancement, systems networking, and image-guided therapy are among the benefits offered by surgical robots. In return, the surgeon gains a shorter learning curve, reduced fatigue, and the opportunity to perform complex procedures that would be difficult using conventional laparoscopy. With the development of image-guided technology, robotic systems will become useful tools for surgical training and simulation. Remote surgery is not a routine procedure, but several teams are working on this and experiencing good results. However, economic concerns are the major drawbacks of these systems; before remote surgery becomes routinely feasible, the clinical benefits must be balanced with high investment and running costs.

  9. Heterozygote Advantage in a Finite Population: Black Color in Wolves.

    PubMed

    Hedrick, Philip W; Stahler, Daniel R; Dekker, Dick

    2014-05-01

    There is a striking color polymorphism for wolves in the Yellowstone National Park where approximately half the wolves are black. The genetic basis for this polymorphism is known, and fitnesses of the genotypes are estimated. These estimates suggest that there is strong heterozygote advantage but substantial asymmetry in the fitness differences of the 2 homozygotes. Theoretically, such fitnesses in a finite population are thought to reduce genetic variation at least as fast as if there were no selection at all. Because the color polymorphism has remained at about the same frequency for 17 years, about 4 generations, we investigated whether this was consistent with the theoretical predictions. Counter to this general expectation of loss, given the initial frequency of black wolves, the theoretical expectation in this case was found to be that the frequency would only decline slowly over time. For example, if the effective population size is 20, then the expected black allele frequency after 4 generations would be 0.191, somewhat less than the observed value of 0.237. However, nearly 30% of the time the expected frequency is 0.25 or greater, consistent with the contemporary observed frequency. In other words and in contrast to general theoretical predictions, because of the short period of time in evolutionary terms and the relatively weak selection at low frequencies, the observed variation and the predicted theoretical variation are not inconsistent. PMID:24795451

  10. Advantages and limitations - A micropaleo approach for tsunamis and storms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hawkes, A. D.

    2012-12-01

    The instrumental and historical records of tsunamis and storms are too short to fully capture the spatial range and temporal occurrence of these rare but often extremely destructive events. One means to assess their likelihood is to develop pre-historic records (paleotsunami and paleotempestology) that detail their imprint on the coastal zone to assess future risk and potentially reduce socio-economic impacts. Studying modern event deposits enables us to deduce what types of characteristics may be retained within the sediment record and how we may use them to reconstruct past events. The use of micropaleontology in event recognition has been used for decades to signify the transport of offshore sediment landward. More detailed analyses are emerging which make use of the offshore distribution of foraminifera and ostracoda to provide insight on wave excavation depth (depth of closure) which could be used to distinguish differing magnitude events. Furthermore, foraminifera, diatoms and pollen have also been used to identify deposits signifying wave run-up and backwash. However, there are a number of limitations to these types of analyses (presence, preservation, analogues, etc) as well as those that hamper all proxies for event recognition (sites, preservation, etc). A suite of examples (multiple researchers, sites and events) will be presented which highlight the advantages and limitations of using a micropaleo approach when analyzing tsunami and storm deposits.

  11. Advantages of Parallel Processing and the Effects of Communications Time

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eddy, Wesley M.; Allman, Mark

    2000-01-01

    Many computing tasks involve heavy mathematical calculations, or analyzing large amounts of data. These operations can take a long time to complete using only one computer. Networks such as the Internet provide many computers with the ability to communicate with each other. Parallel or distributed computing takes advantage of these networked computers by arranging them to work together on a problem, thereby reducing the time needed to obtain the solution. The drawback to using a network of computers to solve a problem is the time wasted in communicating between the various hosts. The application of distributed computing techniques to a space environment or to use over a satellite network would therefore be limited by the amount of time needed to send data across the network, which would typically take much longer than on a terrestrial network. This experiment shows how much faster a large job can be performed by adding more computers to the task, what role communications time plays in the total execution time, and the impact a long-delay network has on a distributed computing system.

  12. Comparative advantage strategy for rapid pollution mitigation in China.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yuan

    2013-09-01

    Due to its sheer size and growth trend, no other country is facing more daunting challenges than China in reducing its pollutant emissions. A critical but inadequately addressed question is how rapidly China could feasibly achieve such mitigation. The stake is high not only about how much worse China's environmental quality could become but also about how the world can prevent catastrophic climate change. Through examining sulfur dioxide (SO2) mitigation in coal-fired power plants and wind energy development for carbon dioxide (CO2) mitigation, this article proposes a comparative advantage strategy for overcoming high barriers to fast pollution mitigation. On the demand side, China could first make progress in the deployment of more pollution control facilities and then improve their operational performance. The resulting low technological market entry barriers could help to build enough industrial capacity to meet the huge demand with prices under control. The strategy in the current practice could be improved to establish not only a large supply industry but also a strong one to enable other countries to move more rapidly in pollution mitigation.

  13. The Advantages of Fixed Facilities in Characterizing TRU Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    FRENCH, M.S.

    2000-02-08

    In May 1998 the Hanford Site started developing a program for characterization of transuranic (TRU) waste for shipment to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) in New Mexico. After less than two years, Hanford will have a program certified by the Carlsbad Area Office (CAO). By picking a simple waste stream, taking advantage of lessons learned at the other sites, as well as communicating effectively with the CAO, Hanford was able to achieve certification in record time. This effort was further simplified by having a centralized program centered on the Waste Receiving and Processing (WRAP) Facility that contains most of the equipment required to characterize TRU waste. The use of fixed facilities for the characterization of TRU waste at sites with a long-term clean-up mission can be cost effective for several reasons. These include the ability to control the environment in which sensitive instrumentation is required to operate and ensuring that calibrations and maintenance activities are scheduled and performed as an operating routine. Other factors contributing to cost effectiveness include providing approved procedures and facilities for handling hazardous materials and anticipated contingencies and performing essential evolutions, and regulating and smoothing the work load and environmental conditions to provide maximal efficiency and productivity. Another advantage is the ability to efficiently provide characterization services to other sites in the Department of Energy (DOE) Complex that do not have the same capabilities. The Waste Receiving and Processing (WRAP) Facility is a state-of-the-art facility designed to consolidate the operations necessary to inspect, process and ship waste to facilitate verification of contents for certification to established waste acceptance criteria. The WRAP facility inspects, characterizes, treats, and certifies transuranic (TRU), low-level and mixed waste at the Hanford Site in Washington state. Fluor Hanford operates the $89

  14. Plant circadian clocks increase photosynthesis, growth, survival, and competitive advantage.

    PubMed

    Dodd, Antony N; Salathia, Neeraj; Hall, Anthony; Kévei, Eva; Tóth, Réka; Nagy, Ferenc; Hibberd, Julian M; Millar, Andrew J; Webb, Alex A R

    2005-07-22

    Circadian clocks are believed to confer an advantage to plants, but the nature of that advantage has been unknown. We show that a substantial photosynthetic advantage is conferred by correct matching of the circadian clock period with that of the external light-dark cycle. In wild type and in long- and short-circadian period mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana, plants with a clock period matched to the environment contain more chlorophyll, fix more carbon, grow faster, and survive better than plants with circadian periods differing from their environment. This explains why plants gain advantage from circadian control.

  15. Reducing Dropouts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Timpane, Michael; And Others

    A group of three conference papers, all addressing the subject of effective programs to decrease the number of school dropouts, is presented in this document. The first paper, "Systemic Approaches to Reducing Dropouts" (Michael Timpane), asserts that dropping out is a symptom of failures in the social, economic, and educational systems. Dropping…

  16. Referee bias contributes to home advantage in English Premiership football.

    PubMed

    Boyko, Ryan H; Boyko, Adam R; Boyko, Mark G

    2007-09-01

    Officiating bias is thought to contribute to home advantage. Recent research has shown that sports with subjective officiating tend to experience greater home advantage and that referees' decisions can be influenced by crowd noise, but little work has been done to examine whether individual referees vary in their home bias or whether biased decisions contribute to overall home advantage. We develop an ordinal regression model to determine whether various measures of home advantage are affected by the official for the match and by crowd size while controlling for team ability. We examine 5244 English Premier League (EPL) match results involving 50 referees and find that home bias differs between referees. Individual referees give significantly different levels of home advantage, measured as goal differential between the home and away teams, although the significance of this result depends on one referee with a particularly high home advantage (an outlier). Referees vary significantly and robustly in their yellow card and penalty differentials even excluding the outlier. These results confirm that referees are responsible for some of the observed home advantage in the EPL and suggest that home advantage is dependent on the subjective decisions of referees that vary between individuals. We hypothesize that individual referees respond differently to factors such as crowd noise and suggest further research looking at referees' psychological and behavioural responses to biased crowds.

  17. The Female Educational Advantage among Adolescent Children of Immigrants

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Feliciano, Cynthia

    2012-01-01

    The female advantage in educational achievement is especially puzzling in the case of children of immigrants because it departs from the pattern in most immigrants' home countries. Using data from the Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study (CILS), this study explores the female advantage in grades and expectations among adolescents and finds…

  18. Information Technology, Core Competencies, and Sustained Competitive Advantage.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Byrd, Terry Anthony

    2001-01-01

    Presents a model that depicts a possible connection between competitive advantage and information technology. Focuses on flexibility of the information technology infrastructure as an enabler of core competencies, especially mass customization and time-to-market, that have a relationship to sustained competitive advantage. (Contains 82…

  19. Comparative Advantage, Relative Wages, and the Accumulation of Human Capital.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Teulings, Coen N.

    2005-01-01

    I apply Ricardo's principle of comparative advantage to a theory of factor substitutability in a model with a continuum of worker and job types. Highly skilled workers have a comparative advantage in complex jobs. The model satisfies the distance-dependent elasticity of substitution (DIDES) characteristic: substitutability between types declines…

  20. Polysemy Advantage with Abstract but Not Concrete Words

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jager, Bernadet; Cleland, Alexandra A.

    2016-01-01

    It is a robust finding that ambiguous words are recognized faster than unambiguous words. More recent studies (e.g., Rodd et al. in "J Mem Lang" 46:245-266, 2002) now indicate that this "ambiguity advantage" may in reality be a "polysemy advantage": caused by related senses (polysemy) rather than unrelated meanings…

  1. Home advantage in the Winter Olympics (1908-1998).

    PubMed

    Balmer, N J; Nevill, A M; Williams, A M

    2001-02-01

    We obtained indices of home advantage, based on the medals won by competing nations, for each event held at the Winter Olympics from 1908 to 1998. These indices were designed to assess home advantage while controlling for nation strength, changes in the number of medals on offer and the performance of 'non-hosting' nations. Some evidence of home advantage was found in figure skating, freestyle skiing, ski jumping, alpine skiing and short track speed skating. In contrast, little or no home advantage was observed in ice hockey, Nordic combined, Nordic skiing, bobsled, luge, biathlon or speed skating. When all events were combined, a significant home advantage was observed (P = 0.029), although no significant differences in the extent of home advantage were found between events (P > 0.05). When events were grouped according to whether they were subjectively assessed by judges, significantly greater home advantage was observed in the subjectively assessed events (P = 0.037). This was a reflection of better home performances, suggesting that judges were scoring home competitors disproportionately higher than away competitors. Familiarity with local conditions was shown to have some effect, particularly in alpine skiing, although the bobsled and luge showed little or no advantage over other events. Regression analysis showed that the number of time zones and direction of travel produced no discernible trends or differences in performance.

  2. The Advantages of Using Planned Comparisons over Post Hoc Tests.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuehne, Carolyn C.

    There are advantages to using a priori or planned comparisons rather than omnibus multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) tests followed by post hoc or a posteriori testing. A small heuristic data set is used to illustrate these advantages. An omnibus MANOVA test was performed on the data followed by a post hoc test (discriminant analysis). A…

  3. Reasoning about Other People's Beliefs: Bilinguals Have an Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rubio-Fernandez, Paula; Glucksberg, Sam

    2012-01-01

    Bilingualism can have widespread cognitive effects. In this article we investigate whether bilingualism might have an effect on adults' abilities to reason about other people's beliefs. In particular, we tested whether bilingual adults might have an advantage over monolingual adults in false-belief reasoning analogous to the advantage that has…

  4. Aging and Text Comprehension: Interpretation and Domain Knowledge Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jeong, Heisawn; Kim, Hyo Sik

    2009-01-01

    In this study, young, middle-aged, and elderly adults read two different history texts. In the "knowledge advantage" condition, readers read a history text about an event that was well-known to readers of all ages but most familiar to elderly adults. In the "no advantage" condition, readers read a history text about a political situation of a…

  5. Zebrafish models of human motor neuron diseases: advantages and limitations.

    PubMed

    Babin, Patrick J; Goizet, Cyril; Raldúa, Demetrio

    2014-07-01

    Motor neuron diseases (MNDs) are an etiologically heterogeneous group of disorders of neurodegenerative origin, which result in degeneration of lower (LMNs) and/or upper motor neurons (UMNs). Neurodegenerative MNDs include pure hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), which involves specific degeneration of UMNs, leading to progressive spasticity of the lower limbs. In contrast, spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) involves the specific degeneration of LMNs, with symmetrical muscle weakness and atrophy. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the most common adult-onset MND, is characterized by the degeneration of both UMNs and LMNs, leading to progressive muscle weakness, atrophy, and spasticity. A review of the comparative neuroanatomy of the human and zebrafish motor systems showed that, while the zebrafish was a homologous model for LMN disorders, such as SMA, it was only partially relevant in the case of UMN disorders, due to the absence of corticospinal and rubrospinal tracts in its central nervous system. Even considering the limitation of this model to fully reproduce the human UMN disorders, zebrafish offer an excellent alternative vertebrate model for the molecular and genetic dissection of MND mechanisms. Its advantages include the conservation of genome and physiological processes and applicable in vivo tools, including easy imaging, loss or gain of function methods, behavioral tests to examine changes in motor activity, and the ease of simultaneous chemical/drug testing on large numbers of animals. This facilitates the assessment of the environmental origin of MNDs, alone or in combination with genetic traits and putative modifier genes. Positive hits obtained by phenotype-based small-molecule screening using zebrafish may potentially be effective drugs for treatment of human MNDs.

  6. Zebrafish models of human motor neuron diseases: advantages and limitations.

    PubMed

    Babin, Patrick J; Goizet, Cyril; Raldúa, Demetrio

    2014-07-01

    Motor neuron diseases (MNDs) are an etiologically heterogeneous group of disorders of neurodegenerative origin, which result in degeneration of lower (LMNs) and/or upper motor neurons (UMNs). Neurodegenerative MNDs include pure hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), which involves specific degeneration of UMNs, leading to progressive spasticity of the lower limbs. In contrast, spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) involves the specific degeneration of LMNs, with symmetrical muscle weakness and atrophy. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the most common adult-onset MND, is characterized by the degeneration of both UMNs and LMNs, leading to progressive muscle weakness, atrophy, and spasticity. A review of the comparative neuroanatomy of the human and zebrafish motor systems showed that, while the zebrafish was a homologous model for LMN disorders, such as SMA, it was only partially relevant in the case of UMN disorders, due to the absence of corticospinal and rubrospinal tracts in its central nervous system. Even considering the limitation of this model to fully reproduce the human UMN disorders, zebrafish offer an excellent alternative vertebrate model for the molecular and genetic dissection of MND mechanisms. Its advantages include the conservation of genome and physiological processes and applicable in vivo tools, including easy imaging, loss or gain of function methods, behavioral tests to examine changes in motor activity, and the ease of simultaneous chemical/drug testing on large numbers of animals. This facilitates the assessment of the environmental origin of MNDs, alone or in combination with genetic traits and putative modifier genes. Positive hits obtained by phenotype-based small-molecule screening using zebrafish may potentially be effective drugs for treatment of human MNDs. PMID:24705136

  7. Home advantage in the Six Nations Rugby Union tournament.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Sion; Reeves, Colin; Bell, Andrew

    2008-02-01

    This study examined whether home advantage occurred in the Six Nations Rugby Union tournament. Data were gathered using the final championship standings from the tournament's inception in 2000 to the recently completed 2007 season. Home advantage for each championship season was defined as the number of points won by teams playing at home, expressed as a percentage of all points gained either at home or away. An analysis of home advantage for each of eight seasons of competition ranged from 53% (2005) to 70% (2006). There was an overall statistically significant home advantage of 61% for 120 matches played in the Six Nations tournament between 2000 and 2007. Also analysed were the percentage of points won at home by each country. Again, evidence supported home advantage amongst all competing nations regardless of the team's quality.

  8. Social network analysis: foundations and frontiers on advantage.

    PubMed

    Burt, Ronald S; Kilduff, Martin; Tasselli, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    We provide an overview of social network analysis focusing on network advantage as a lens that touches on much of the area. For reasons of good data and abundant research, we draw heavily on studies of people in organizations. Advantage is traced to network structure as a proxy for the distribution of variably sticky information in a population. The network around a person indicates the person's access and control in the distribution. Advantage is a function of information breadth, timing, and arbitrage. Advantage is manifest in higher odds of proposing good ideas, more positive evaluations and recognition, higher compensation, and faster promotions. We discuss frontiers of advantage contingent on personality, cognition, embeddedness, and dynamics.

  9. Three advantages of using traditional Chinese medicine to prevent and treat tumor.

    PubMed

    Ling, Chang-quan; Yue, Xiao-qiang; Ling, Chen

    2014-07-01

    Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), an important component of complementary and alternative medicine, has evolved over thousands of years with its own unique system of theories, diagnostics and therapies. TCM has been increasingly used in the last decades and become well known for its significant role in preventing and treating cancer. We believe that TCM possesses advantages over Western medicine in specific aspects at a certain stage of cancer treatment. Here we summarize the advantages of TCM from three aspects: preventing tumorigenesis; attenuating toxicity and enhancing the treatment effect; and reducing tumor recurrence and metastasis.

  10. Reducible oxide based catalysts

    DOEpatents

    Thompson, Levi T.; Kim, Chang Hwan; Bej, Shyamal K.

    2010-04-06

    A catalyst is disclosed herein. The catalyst includes a reducible oxide support and at least one noble metal fixed on the reducible oxide support. The noble metal(s) is loaded on the support at a substantially constant temperature and pH.

  11. Advantages of High vs. Low Earth Orbit for SIRTF

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eisenhardt, Peter; Werner, Michael W.

    1989-01-01

    While the subject of this workshop, which we will refer to as ET (for Enlightenment Telescope), is a dazzling successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, its location is unlikely to be the Low Earth Orbit (LEO) used by HST. Locations suggested for ET include High Earth Orbit (HEO) and the moon. The first space telescope to occupy HEO will be the liquid helium cooled Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF). The selection of HEO for SIRTF was the outcome of a recent study led by the Ames Research Center which showed significant advantages for SIRTF in HEO vs. LEO. This article summarizes the main results of that study. We begin with a review of SIRTF's rationale and requirements, in part because the IR capabilities and low temperature proposed for ET make it something of a successor to SIRTF as well as to HST. We conclude with some comments about another possible location for both SIRTF and ET, the Earth-Sun L2 Lagrangian point.

  12. Home advantage and referee bias in European football.

    PubMed

    Goumas, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Home advantage is well documented in a wide range of team sports including association football (soccer). Home team crowd support has been shown to be a likely causal factor and its influence on referee decision-making appears to play a significant role. Match data from the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 seasons of the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) Champions League and Europa League were used to investigate referee bias in terms of the association between match location (home vs. away) and disciplinary sanctions used by football referees. The adjusted mean number of yellow cards received by home and away teams and the ratios of these means were estimated from Poisson regression models. After controlling for within-match measures of attacking dominance referees in the Champions League and Europa League issued 25% (p<0.001) and 10% (p=0.002) more yellow cards, respectively, to away teams than to home teams. The higher level of home team bias in the Champions League appeared to be mainly due to higher crowd densities. In a combined analysis of both UEFA leagues the magnitude of referee bias increased with increasing crowd density (p<0.001). Crowd size and crowd proximity were not associated with referee bias after controlling for crowd density. These results provide further evidence that crowd support influences referee decisions. Failure to control for within-match team performance may over-estimate the extent of referee bias in terms of the number of disciplinary sanctions used.

  13. Advantages and limitations of common testing methods for antioxidants.

    PubMed

    Amorati, R; Valgimigli, L

    2015-05-01

    Owing to the importance of antioxidants in the protection of both natural and man-made materials, a large variety of testing methods have been proposed and applied. These include methods based on inhibited autoxidation studies, which are better followed by monitoring the kinetics of oxygen consumption or of the formation of hydroperoxides, the primary oxidation products. Analytical determination of secondary oxidation products (e.g. carbonyl compounds) has also been used. The majority of testing methods, however, do not involve substrate autoxidation. They are based on the competitive bleaching of a probe (e.g. ORAC assay, β-carotene, crocin bleaching assays, and luminol assay), on reaction with a different probe (e.g. spin-trapping and TOSC assay), or they are indirect methods based on the reduction of persistent radicals (e.g. galvinoxyl, DPPH and TEAC assays), or of inorganic oxidizing species (e.g. FRAP, CUPRAC and Folin-Ciocalteu assays). Yet other methods are specific for preventive antioxidants. The relevance, advantages, and limitations of these methods are critically discussed, with respect to their chemistry and the mechanisms of antioxidant activity. A variety of cell-based assays have also been proposed, to investigate the biological activity of antioxidants. Their importance and critical aspects are discussed, along with arguments for the selection of the appropriate testing methods according to the different needs.

  14. Preclinical modeling of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation - advantages and limitations.

    PubMed

    Stolfi, Jessica L; Pai, Chien-Chun S; Murphy, William J

    2016-05-01

    Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, which was first successfully performed in the 1950s, remains a critical therapeutic modality for treatment of a diverse array of diseases, including a multitude of hematological malignancies, autoimmune disorders, amyloidosis and inherited genetic hematological disorders. Although great advances have been made in understanding and application of this therapy, significant complications still exist, warranting further investigation. Of critical importance, graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), in both acute and chronic forms, remains a major complication of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, responsible for both the development of chronic illness and morbidity, as well as mortality. Use of an appropriate preclinical model may provide significant insight into the mechanistic pathways leading to the development and progression of graft-versus-host disease, as well as cancer in general. However, existing preclinical modeling systems exhibit significant limitations, and development of models that recapitulate the complex and comprehensive clinical scenario and provide a tool by which therapeutic intervention may be developed and assessed is of utmost importance. Here, we review the present status of the field of graft-versus-host disease research. We discuss and summarize the preclinical models currently in use, as well as their advantages and limitations.

  15. Unexpected advantages of a temporary fluid-loss control pill

    SciTech Connect

    Hardy, M.

    1996-09-01

    Economics often dictate research; however, serendipity can benefit the results of research and simultaneously soften the rigidity of economic demands. Such as the case with a recently developed fluid-loss control pill. Economic reasons compelled researchers to find a replacement for an existing field product, the characteristics of which had to be duplicated. Initially, researchers sought to develop a pill that blocked fluid flow into and out of the wellbore and was mixable in brines from 8.35 to 19 lb/gal. The degradation of the replacement crosslinkable hydroxyethyl cellulose fluid (RXHEC) involves uncrosslinking and unzipping of backbone, which simplifies the disposal of returns. In addition to being environmentally acceptable, RXHEC is capable of breaking with weak acids, allowing the use of external breakers in acid-sensitive wells. Additional advantages include the ease with which tubulars can pass through the RXHEC pill and leave it in place, making a remedial pill unnecessary. The RXHEC uses a liquid gel concentrate (LGC) system and is stable beyond 125 C.

  16. Advantages of time reversal acoustic focusing system in biomedical applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sutin, Alexander; Sarvazyan, Armen

    2005-09-01

    The development and biomedical applications of time reversal acoustics (TRA) systems for focusing and manipulating ultrasound beams are reviewed. The TRA focusing system (TRA FS) is capable to deliver ultrasound energy to the chosen region in highly inhomogeneous medium (including soft tissues and bones) with focusing efficacy hardly achievable using conventional phased array transmitters. TRA FS is able to focus and stir ultrasound beams in a 3-D volume using just a few piezoceramic transducers glued to the facets an aluminum block. Another advantage of TRA FS is its ability to produce pulses with arbitrary waveforms in a wide frequency band. A custom-designed compact multichannel TRA system operating in a wide frequency range from 0.01 to 10 MHz has been developed. Measurements of TRA field structure were conducted in a large variety of inhomogeneous tissue phantoms and ex vivo bones and soft tissues. Principles of TRA focusing optimization based on acoustical properties of the resonator material, parameters of the sonicated medium, and the coupling of the TRA resonator with the medium were developed and applied in the tested TRA systems. [Work was supported by NIH.

  17. Selenium utilization in thioredoxin and catalytic advantage provided by selenocysteine

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Moon-Jung; Lee, Byung Cheon; Hwang, Kwang Yeon; Gladyshev, Vadim N.; Kim, Hwa-Young

    2016-01-01

    Thioredoxin (Trx) is a major thiol-disulfide reductase that plays a role in many biological processes, including DNA replication and redox signaling. Although selenocysteine (Sec)-containing Trxs have been identified in certain bacteria, their enzymatic properties have not been characterized. In this study, we expressed a selenoprotein Trx from Treponema denticola, an oral spirochete, in Escherichia coli and characterized this selenoenzyme and its natural cysteine (Cys) homologue using E. coli Trx1 as a positive control. 75Se metabolic labeling and mutation analyses showed that the SECIS (Sec insertion sequence) of T. denticola selenoprotein Trx is functional in the E. coli Sec insertion system with specific selenium incorporation into the Sec residue. The selenoprotein Trx exhibited approximately 10-fold higher catalytic activity than the Sec-to-Cys version and natural Cys homologue and E. coli Trx1, suggesting that Sec confers higher catalytic activity on this thiol-disulfide reductase. Kinetic analysis also showed that the selenoprotein Trx had a 10-fold higher Km than Cys-containing homologues, suggesting that this selenoenzyme is adapted to work efficiently with high concentrations of substrate. Collectively, the results of this study support the hypothesis that selenium utilization in oxidoreductase systems is primarily due to the catalytic advantage provided by the rare amino acid, Sec. PMID:25912135

  18. Advantage of soybean isoflavone as antiandrogen on acne vulgaris

    PubMed Central

    Riyanto, Puguh; Subchan, Prasetyowati; Lelyana, Rosa

    2015-01-01

    Background: Acne vulgaris (AV) is the commonest skin disorder, whereas soybean isoflavone had been proved as antiandrogen that is it can inhibit the enzyme 3ß-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase,17ß-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase and 5α-reductase. The purpose of this study is to prove the advantage of soybean isoflavone as antiandrogen on AV. Methods: this study is a clinical study using randomized pretest-posttest control group design. This study is a study with 40 samples randomized into 2 groups, i.e. placebo group and 160 mgs of isoflavone group, the duration is 12 weeks, conducted a double-blind manner. The dependent variabel is total of AV lesion, whereas the intermediate variable is DHT that will be examined using ELISA. Defferential test and multivariate analysis were performed on dependent, independent and intermediate variables. Results: This study found that the difference in mean of total AV lesion before treatment was not significant (p: 0.099), whereas after treatment it differed significantly (p: 0.000), with significant delta difference (p: 0.000). Difference of mean DHT level before treatment was not significant (p: 0.574), whereas after treatment it differed significantly (p: 0.000), with significant delta difference (p: 0.000). Delta of DHT (p: 0.003) (r: 0.736) had significant influence on delta of total AV lesion (P < 0.05). Conclusion: This study concludes that supplementation with 160 mgs/day of soybean isoflavone can reduce total AV lesion as a result of decreased DHT level. PMID:26413190

  19. Home advantage in southern hemisphere rugby union: national and international.

    PubMed

    Morton R, Hugh

    2006-05-01

    This study evaluates home advantages both for national (Super 12) and international (Tri-nations) rugby union teams from South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, over the five-year period 2000 - 2004 using linear modelling. These home advantages are examined for statistical and practical significance, for variability between teams, for stability over time and for inter-correlation. These data reveal that the overall home advantage in elite rugby union has a mean of +6.7 points, and that this changes little from year to year. Closer scrutiny nevertheless reveals a high degree of variability. Different teams can and do have different home advantages, which ranges from a low of -0.7 to a high of +28.3 points in any one year. Furthermore, some team home advantages change up or down from one year to the next, by as much as -36.5 to +31.4 points at the extremes. There is no evidence that the stronger teams have the higher home advantages, or that a high home advantage leads to a superior finishing position in the competition.

  20. Cumulative Advantage in an Egalitarian Country? Socioeconomic Health Disparities over the Life Course in Sweden.

    PubMed

    Leopold, Liliya

    2016-06-01

    According to the cumulative advantage hypothesis, health gaps between socioeconomic groups widen with age. In the United States, studies have supported this hypothesis. Outside this context, evidence remains scarce. The present study tests the cumulative advantage hypothesis in Sweden, a society that contrasts sharply with the United States in terms of policies designed to reduce social disparities in health-related resources. I draw on longitudinal data from the Swedish Level of Living Survey (N = 9,412 person-years), spanning the period between 1991 and 2010. The results show that gaps in self-rated health increase from early to middle adulthood. This applies to differences between educational groups and between occupational classes. In older age, health gaps remain constant. Cross-cohort analyses reveal a rising importance of cumulative advantage between educational groups but not between occupational classes. I conclude that the forces of accumulation prevail even in one of the most egalitarian welfare states.

  1. Cumulative Advantage in an Egalitarian Country? Socioeconomic Health Disparities over the Life Course in Sweden.

    PubMed

    Leopold, Liliya

    2016-06-01

    According to the cumulative advantage hypothesis, health gaps between socioeconomic groups widen with age. In the United States, studies have supported this hypothesis. Outside this context, evidence remains scarce. The present study tests the cumulative advantage hypothesis in Sweden, a society that contrasts sharply with the United States in terms of policies designed to reduce social disparities in health-related resources. I draw on longitudinal data from the Swedish Level of Living Survey (N = 9,412 person-years), spanning the period between 1991 and 2010. The results show that gaps in self-rated health increase from early to middle adulthood. This applies to differences between educational groups and between occupational classes. In older age, health gaps remain constant. Cross-cohort analyses reveal a rising importance of cumulative advantage between educational groups but not between occupational classes. I conclude that the forces of accumulation prevail even in one of the most egalitarian welfare states. PMID:27284078

  2. A procedure and program to calculate shuttle mask advantage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balasinski, A.; Cetin, J.; Kahng, A.; Xu, X.

    2006-10-01

    A well-known recipe for reducing mask cost component in product development is to place non-redundant elements of layout databases related to multiple products on one reticle plate [1,2]. Such reticles are known as multi-product, multi-layer, or, in general, multi-IP masks. The composition of the mask set should minimize not only the layout placement cost, but also the cost of the manufacturing process, design flow setup, and product design and introduction to market. An important factor is the quality check which should be expeditious and enable thorough visual verification to avoid costly modifications once the data is transferred to the mask shop. In this work, in order to enable the layer placement and quality check procedure, we proposed an algorithm where mask layers are first lined up according to the price and field tone [3]. Then, depending on the product die size, expected fab throughput, and scribeline requirements, the subsequent product layers are placed on the masks with different grades. The actual reduction of this concept to practice allowed us to understand the tradeoffs between the automation of layer placement and setup related constraints. For example, the limited options of the numbers of layer per plate dictated by the die size and other design feedback, made us consider layer pairing based not only on the final price of the mask set, but also on the cost of mask design and fab-friendliness. We showed that it may be advantageous to introduce manual layer pairing to ensure that, e.g., all interconnect layers would be placed on the same plate, allowing for easy and simultaneous design fixes. Another enhancement was to allow some flexibility in mixing and matching of the layers such that non-critical ones requiring low mask grade would be placed in a less restrictive way, to reduce the count of orphan layers. In summary, we created a program to automatically propose and visualize shuttle mask architecture for design verification, with

  3. Bioremediation techniques-classification based on site of application: principles, advantages, limitations and prospects.

    PubMed

    Azubuike, Christopher Chibueze; Chikere, Chioma Blaise; Okpokwasili, Gideon Chijioke

    2016-11-01

    Environmental pollution has been on the rise in the past few decades owing to increased human activities on energy reservoirs, unsafe agricultural practices and rapid industrialization. Amongst the pollutants that are of environmental and public health concerns due to their toxicities are: heavy metals, nuclear wastes, pesticides, green house gases, and hydrocarbons. Remediation of polluted sites using microbial process (bioremediation) has proven effective and reliable due to its eco-friendly features. Bioremediation can either be carried out ex situ or in situ, depending on several factors, which include but not limited to cost, site characteristics, type and concentration of pollutants. Generally, ex situ techniques apparently are more expensive compared to in situ techniques as a result of additional cost attributable to excavation. However, cost of on-site installation of equipment, and inability to effectively visualize and control the subsurface of polluted sites are of major concerns when carrying out in situ bioremediation. Therefore, choosing appropriate bioremediation technique, which will effectively reduce pollutant concentrations to an innocuous state, is crucial for a successful bioremediation project. Furthermore, the two major approaches to enhance bioremediation are biostimulation and bioaugmentation provided that environmental factors, which determine the success of bioremediation, are maintained at optimal range. This review provides more insight into the two major bioremediation techniques, their principles, advantages, limitations and prospects.

  4. Advantages and pitfalls of fructosamine and glycated albumin in the diagnosis and treatment of diabetes.

    PubMed

    Danese, Elisa; Montagnana, Martina; Nouvenne, Antonio; Lippi, Giuseppe

    2015-03-01

    The efficient diagnosis and accurate monitoring of diabetic patients are cornerstones for reducing the risk of diabetic complications. The current diagnostic and prognostic strategies in diabetes are mainly based on two tests, plasma (or capillary) glucose and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c). Nevertheless, these measures are not foolproof, and their clinical usefulness is biased by a number of clinical and analytical factors. The introduction of other indices of glucose homeostasis in clinical practice such as fructosamine and glycated albumin (GA) may be regarded as an attractive alternative, especially in patients in whom the measurement of HbA1c may be biased or even unreliable. These include patients with rapid changes of glucose homeostasis and larger glycemic excursions, and patients with red blood cell disorders and renal disease. According to available evidence, the overall diagnostic efficiency of GA seems superior to that of fructosamine throughout a broad range of clinical settings. The current method for measuring GA is also better standardized and less vulnerable to preanalytical variables than those used for assessing fructosamine. Additional advantages of GA over HbA1c are represented by lower reagent cost and being able to automate the GA analysis on many conventional laboratory instruments. Although further studies are needed to definitely establish that GA can complement or even replace conventional measures of glycemic control such as HbA1c, GA may help the clinical management of patients with diabetes in whom HbA1c values might be unreliable.

  5. Bioremediation techniques-classification based on site of application: principles, advantages, limitations and prospects.

    PubMed

    Azubuike, Christopher Chibueze; Chikere, Chioma Blaise; Okpokwasili, Gideon Chijioke

    2016-11-01

    Environmental pollution has been on the rise in the past few decades owing to increased human activities on energy reservoirs, unsafe agricultural practices and rapid industrialization. Amongst the pollutants that are of environmental and public health concerns due to their toxicities are: heavy metals, nuclear wastes, pesticides, green house gases, and hydrocarbons. Remediation of polluted sites using microbial process (bioremediation) has proven effective and reliable due to its eco-friendly features. Bioremediation can either be carried out ex situ or in situ, depending on several factors, which include but not limited to cost, site characteristics, type and concentration of pollutants. Generally, ex situ techniques apparently are more expensive compared to in situ techniques as a result of additional cost attributable to excavation. However, cost of on-site installation of equipment, and inability to effectively visualize and control the subsurface of polluted sites are of major concerns when carrying out in situ bioremediation. Therefore, choosing appropriate bioremediation technique, which will effectively reduce pollutant concentrations to an innocuous state, is crucial for a successful bioremediation project. Furthermore, the two major approaches to enhance bioremediation are biostimulation and bioaugmentation provided that environmental factors, which determine the success of bioremediation, are maintained at optimal range. This review provides more insight into the two major bioremediation techniques, their principles, advantages, limitations and prospects. PMID:27638318

  6. Advantageous use of slush and gelled slush in space vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adamson, J. Z.

    1971-01-01

    The advantages of combining both slush and gel have been recognized. These advantages are: (1) a reduction in the gelling agent necessary; (2) the achievement of active positioning; and (3) a potential increase in impulse density. The need for extended mission capability as indicated by present mission planning is outlined and the expected schedules are presented. A condensed version of analytical and testing conclusions as related to storage systems and slush is given. The significant results of slush flow testing and its possible influence on vehicle propulsion systems are presented, and the characterization and preparation of gels are discussed in relation to future applications, advantages, and disadvantages.

  7. Comparison of home advantage in men's and women's football leagues in Europe.

    PubMed

    Pollard, Richard; Gómez, Miguel A

    2014-01-01

    Most research into home advantage is based on men's sports. This article analyses home advantage in the women's domestic football leagues of Europe and makes a comparison with the corresponding men's football leagues. A total of 47,042 games were included. From 2004 to 2010, home advantage existed in the domestic women's soccer leagues of all 26 European countries analysed, ranging from 51.0% to 58.8% and averaging 54.2%. In every country, this was less than the corresponding men's home advantage which averaged 60.0%. Crowd effects, both on players and referees, and different gender perceptions of territorial protection are plausible reasons for the differences found. Using a regression model that controlled for the competitive balance of each league, as well as for crowd size, the Gender Gap Index, which quantifies the status of women in each country, was a significant predictor of the difference between men's and women's home advantage. As the status of women becomes closer to that of men within a country, the difference in home advantage is less between the men's and women's football leagues.

  8. Recent Growth In Medicare Advantage Enrollment Associated With Decreased Fee-For-Service Spending In Certain US Counties.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Garret; Figueroa, José F; Zhou, Xiner; Orav, E John; Jha, Ashish K

    2016-09-01

    Recent increases in Medicare Advantage enrollment may have caused lower spending growth in the fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare population. We identified the counties of largest Medicare Advantage growth and determined if increased enrollment was associated with reduced FFS Medicare spending growth in those counties. We found that 73 percent of counties experienced at least a 5-percentage-point increase in Medicare Advantage penetration between 2007 and 2014, with the most growth occurring in larger and poorer counties in the Northeast and South. The association between Medicare Advantage growth and FFS Medicare costs varied depending on baseline Medicare Advantage penetration: In counties with low baseline penetration, Medicare Advantage growth did not have a significant effect on per capita FFS Medicare spending, whereas in counties in the highest quartile of baseline Medicare Advantage penetration, it was associated with a significant decrease in FFS Medicare spending growth ($154 annually per 10-percentage-point increase in Medicare Advantage). These findings suggest that Medicare Advantage growth may be playing a role in moderating FFS Medicare costs.

  9. Recent Growth In Medicare Advantage Enrollment Associated With Decreased Fee-For-Service Spending In Certain US Counties.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Garret; Figueroa, José F; Zhou, Xiner; Orav, E John; Jha, Ashish K

    2016-09-01

    Recent increases in Medicare Advantage enrollment may have caused lower spending growth in the fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare population. We identified the counties of largest Medicare Advantage growth and determined if increased enrollment was associated with reduced FFS Medicare spending growth in those counties. We found that 73 percent of counties experienced at least a 5-percentage-point increase in Medicare Advantage penetration between 2007 and 2014, with the most growth occurring in larger and poorer counties in the Northeast and South. The association between Medicare Advantage growth and FFS Medicare costs varied depending on baseline Medicare Advantage penetration: In counties with low baseline penetration, Medicare Advantage growth did not have a significant effect on per capita FFS Medicare spending, whereas in counties in the highest quartile of baseline Medicare Advantage penetration, it was associated with a significant decrease in FFS Medicare spending growth ($154 annually per 10-percentage-point increase in Medicare Advantage). These findings suggest that Medicare Advantage growth may be playing a role in moderating FFS Medicare costs. PMID:27605654

  10. Review of ADHD Pharmacotherapies: Advantages, Disadvantages, and Clinical Pearls

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daughton, Joan M.; Kratochvil, Christopher J.

    2009-01-01

    The advantages, disadvantages, as well as helpful hints on when to use several drug therapies against attention deficit hyperactivity disorder are discussed. The drugs discussed are methylphenidate, atomoxetine, clonidine, and bupropion.

  11. Cognitive advantage in bilingualism: an example of publication bias?

    PubMed

    de Bruin, Angela; Treccani, Barbara; Della Sala, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    It is a widely held belief that bilinguals have an advantage over monolinguals in executive-control tasks, but is this what all studies actually demonstrate? The idea of a bilingual advantage may result from a publication bias favoring studies with positive results over studies with null or negative effects. To test this hypothesis, we looked at conference abstracts from 1999 to 2012 on the topic of bilingualism and executive control. We then determined which of the studies they reported were subsequently published. Studies with results fully supporting the bilingual-advantage theory were most likely to be published, followed by studies with mixed results. Studies challenging the bilingual advantage were published the least. This discrepancy was not due to differences in sample size, tests used, or statistical power. A test for funnel-plot asymmetry provided further evidence for the existence of a publication bias. PMID:25475825

  12. Cognitive advantage in bilingualism: an example of publication bias?

    PubMed

    de Bruin, Angela; Treccani, Barbara; Della Sala, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    It is a widely held belief that bilinguals have an advantage over monolinguals in executive-control tasks, but is this what all studies actually demonstrate? The idea of a bilingual advantage may result from a publication bias favoring studies with positive results over studies with null or negative effects. To test this hypothesis, we looked at conference abstracts from 1999 to 2012 on the topic of bilingualism and executive control. We then determined which of the studies they reported were subsequently published. Studies with results fully supporting the bilingual-advantage theory were most likely to be published, followed by studies with mixed results. Studies challenging the bilingual advantage were published the least. This discrepancy was not due to differences in sample size, tests used, or statistical power. A test for funnel-plot asymmetry provided further evidence for the existence of a publication bias.

  13. Electrophysiological Explorations of the Bilingual Advantage: Evidence from a Stroop Task

    PubMed Central

    Coderre, Emily L.; van Heuven, Walter J. B.

    2014-01-01

    Bilinguals have been shown to exhibit a performance advantage on executive control tasks, outperforming their monolingual counterparts. Although a wealth of research has investigated this ‘bilingual advantage’ behaviourally, electrophysiological correlates are lacking. Using EEG with a Stroop task that manipulated the stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) of word and colour presentation, the current study addressed two facets of the bilingual advantage. The possibility that bilinguals experience superior conflict processing relative to monolinguals (a ‘conflict-specific advantage’) was investigated by comparing behavioural interference effects as well as the amplitude of the Ninc, a conflict-related ERP component occurring from approximately 300–500 ms after the onset of conflict. In contrast, the hypothesis that bilinguals experience domain-general, conflict-independent enhancements in executive processing (a ‘non-conflict-specific advantage’) was evaluated by comparing the control condition (symbol strings) between groups. There was some significant, but inconsistent, evidence for a conflict-specific bilingual advantage. In contrast, strong evidence emerged for a non-conflict-specific advantage, with bilinguals demonstrating faster RTs and reduced ERP amplitudes on control trials compared to monolinguals. Importantly, when the control stimulus was presented before the colour, ERPs to control trials revealed group differences before the onset of conflict, suggesting differences in the ability to ignore or suppress distracting irrelevant information. This indicates that bilinguals experience superior executive processing even in the absence of conflict and semantic salience, and suggests that the advantage extends to more efficient proactive management of the environment. PMID:25068723

  14. Advantages and disadvantages with drones in determining the erosion of a fire zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernández Raga, María; Palencia, Covadonga; Sanz Ablanedo, Enoc

    2016-04-01

    The impact produced by the fire and the subsequent sensitivity of the soil, is very variable, depending on factors such as geology, soil composition, slope, exposure to wind and vegetation cover among others. Therefore, optimizing the use of limited resources is necessary, by identifying priority areas to apply corrective measures. The criteria for selecting the most vulnerable area after a fire should include a monitoring of the evolution of the affected areas including different variables such as the soil loss. But the trace of erosion flows often requires not only a high economic effort due to people working in field, but also adverse effects on the sensitive soil, because of the footsteps in vulnerable areas with steep slopes or areas that have lost their original structure after fire. For these reasons, monitoring of burnt soils is normally reduced to the minimum. Drones or UAVs can be used as an aerial measurement technology useful in different soil recovering studies. High-resolution digital terrain models and high-resolution orthophotos obtained from UAV can be used to achieve a continuum or unlimited number of measurements anywhere in the field test. As an aerial technique, this technique has some advantages. For example, excessive walking over burnt soils is avoided. Besides, due to the relatively low cost of the technique, the frequency of sampling may be higher than traditional sampling works. In recent years drones have been used to monitoring and measuring the recovery of the vegetation cover. In this work the capabilities of this technique as an erosion measurement tool will be explored. Two field area test,which were burnt on 8 August 2015, have been flown with a multirotor. The surface of each area is about 1500m2 and the aim is to measure the winter erosion with a precision and an accuracy better than 1 cm, demonstrating that drones are a very appropriate technique to study: • Burned hillsides in highly sensitive situations, requiring not

  15. Medicare Advantage Plans Pay Hospitals Less Than Traditional Medicare Pays.

    PubMed

    Baker, Laurence C; Bundorf, M Kate; Devlin, Aileen M; Kessler, Daniel P

    2016-08-01

    There is ongoing debate about how prices paid to providers by Medicare Advantage plans compare to prices paid by fee-for-service Medicare. We used data from Medicare and the Health Care Cost Institute to identify the prices paid for hospital services by fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans, and commercial insurers in 2009 and 2012. We calculated the average price per admission, and its trend over time, in each of the three types of insurance for fixed baskets of hospital admissions across metropolitan areas. After accounting for differences in hospital networks, geographic areas, and case-mix between Medicare Advantage and FFS Medicare, we found that Medicare Advantage plans paid 5.6 percent less for hospital services than FFS Medicare did. Without taking into account the narrower networks of Medicare Advantage, the program paid 8.0 percent less than FFS Medicare. We also found that the rates paid by commercial plans were much higher than those of either Medicare Advantage or FFS Medicare, and growing. At least some of this difference comes from the much higher prices that commercial plans pay for profitable service lines.

  16. Medicare Advantage Plans Pay Hospitals Less Than Traditional Medicare Pays.

    PubMed

    Baker, Laurence C; Bundorf, M Kate; Devlin, Aileen M; Kessler, Daniel P

    2016-08-01

    There is ongoing debate about how prices paid to providers by Medicare Advantage plans compare to prices paid by fee-for-service Medicare. We used data from Medicare and the Health Care Cost Institute to identify the prices paid for hospital services by fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans, and commercial insurers in 2009 and 2012. We calculated the average price per admission, and its trend over time, in each of the three types of insurance for fixed baskets of hospital admissions across metropolitan areas. After accounting for differences in hospital networks, geographic areas, and case-mix between Medicare Advantage and FFS Medicare, we found that Medicare Advantage plans paid 5.6 percent less for hospital services than FFS Medicare did. Without taking into account the narrower networks of Medicare Advantage, the program paid 8.0 percent less than FFS Medicare. We also found that the rates paid by commercial plans were much higher than those of either Medicare Advantage or FFS Medicare, and growing. At least some of this difference comes from the much higher prices that commercial plans pay for profitable service lines. PMID:27503970

  17. Comparison of the home advantage in nine different professional team sports in Spain.

    PubMed

    Gómez, Miguel A; Pollard, Richard; Luis-Pascual, Juan-Carlos

    2011-08-01

    Home advantage is a well-established phenomenon in many sports. The present study is unique in that it includes different sports analysed in the same country, at the same level of competition, and over the same time period. Nine team sports from Spain were included: baseball, basketball, handball, indoor soccer, roller hockey, rugby, soccer, volleyball, and water polo. Data for five seasons (2005-2006 to 2009-2010) were obtained, totaling 9,472 games. The results confirmed the existence of home advantage in all nine sports. There was a statistically significant difference between the sports; home advantage was highest in rugby (67.0%), and lowest in volleyball (55.7%), water polo (56.2%), and roller hockey (58.3%). The design of the study controlled for some of the likely causes of home advantage, and the results suggested that the high home advantage for rugby was likely a reflection of the continuous, aggressive, and intense nature of the sport. PMID:21987916

  18. Comparison of the home advantage in nine different professional team sports in Spain.

    PubMed

    Gómez, Miguel A; Pollard, Richard; Luis-Pascual, Juan-Carlos

    2011-08-01

    Home advantage is a well-established phenomenon in many sports. The present study is unique in that it includes different sports analysed in the same country, at the same level of competition, and over the same time period. Nine team sports from Spain were included: baseball, basketball, handball, indoor soccer, roller hockey, rugby, soccer, volleyball, and water polo. Data for five seasons (2005-2006 to 2009-2010) were obtained, totaling 9,472 games. The results confirmed the existence of home advantage in all nine sports. There was a statistically significant difference between the sports; home advantage was highest in rugby (67.0%), and lowest in volleyball (55.7%), water polo (56.2%), and roller hockey (58.3%). The design of the study controlled for some of the likely causes of home advantage, and the results suggested that the high home advantage for rugby was likely a reflection of the continuous, aggressive, and intense nature of the sport.

  19. Contracting with Medicare Advantage plans: a brief for critical access hospital administrators.

    PubMed

    Mason, Michelle; Fraser-Maginn, Roslyn; Mueller, Keith; King, Jennifer; Radford, Andrea; Slifkin, Rebecca; Lenardson, Jennifer; Silver, Lauren; Mueller, Curt

    2005-12-01

    This document summarizes the experience of CAH administrators with contracts offered by Medicare Advantage (MA) plans. Telephone surveys were conducted with CAH administrators across the country to learn about their experiences with MA plans. This brief includes information about the contract terms administrators have been offered, their experiences negotiating with MA plans, and their advice for others dealing with this issue. PMID:16397967

  20. 75 FR 32858 - Medicare Program; Policy and Technical Changes to the Medicare Advantage and the Medicare...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-06-10

    ...; Policy and Technical Changes to the Medicare Advantage and the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit... Prescription Drug Benefit Programs'' which appeared in the April 15, 2010 Federal Register (FR Doc. 2010-7966... all covered Part D drugs must be included in Part D formularies (75 FR 19767), we indicated that...

  1. Including Conflict in Creative Writing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Litvin, Martin

    Conflict is the basis of all stories and thus should appear in some form in the first sentence. There are three kinds of conflict: people vs. people; people vs. nature; and people vs. themselves. Conflict must be repeated in all the various elements of the story's structure, including the plot, which is the plan of action telling what happens to…

  2. Family Living, Including Sex Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Forlano, George

    This volume describes and evaluates 21 selected New York City Board of Education Umbrella Programs for the 1974-1975 school year. The programs include: (1) the parent resource center, (2) the teacher self-help program, (3) the East Harlem pre-kindergarten center, (4) the Brooklyn College volunteer tutoring program, (5) the parent education for…

  3. The tragedy of the commodity and the farce of AquAdvantage Salmon.

    PubMed

    Clausen, Rebecca; Longo, Stefano B

    2012-01-01

    The US Food and Drug Administration is expected to approve AquAdvantage Salmon as the first genetically modified animal for human consumption. The genetic modifications allow the proprietary fish to grow at a rate twice as fast as a wild salmon, leading to greater ‘efficiency’ in terms of reduced costs and reduced time to market. This article provides an analysis of the ways in which AquAdvantage Salmon exemplifies capitalist market forces controlling and guiding the terms of salmon recovery and conservation. The authors trace historical developments within the salmon industry to demonstrate how capitalist commodity production has impacted fishing communities. They reject the oft-cited ‘tragedy of the commons’ hypothesis offered to explain fisheries crises. In its place, they offer the conceptual framework of the ‘tragedy of the commodity’ to explore how capitalist market forces and complicit state regulations amplify rather than resolve global environmental problems. PMID:22662348

  4. The tragedy of the commodity and the farce of AquAdvantage Salmon.

    PubMed

    Clausen, Rebecca; Longo, Stefano B

    2012-01-01

    The US Food and Drug Administration is expected to approve AquAdvantage Salmon as the first genetically modified animal for human consumption. The genetic modifications allow the proprietary fish to grow at a rate twice as fast as a wild salmon, leading to greater ‘efficiency’ in terms of reduced costs and reduced time to market. This article provides an analysis of the ways in which AquAdvantage Salmon exemplifies capitalist market forces controlling and guiding the terms of salmon recovery and conservation. The authors trace historical developments within the salmon industry to demonstrate how capitalist commodity production has impacted fishing communities. They reject the oft-cited ‘tragedy of the commons’ hypothesis offered to explain fisheries crises. In its place, they offer the conceptual framework of the ‘tragedy of the commodity’ to explore how capitalist market forces and complicit state regulations amplify rather than resolve global environmental problems.

  5. Belowground advantages in construction cost facilitate a cryptic plant invasion.

    PubMed

    Caplan, Joshua S; Wheaton, Christine N; Mozdzer, Thomas J

    2014-04-30

    The energetic cost of plant organ construction is a functional trait that is useful for understanding carbon investment during growth (e.g. the resource acquisition vs. tissue longevity tradeoff), as well as in response to global change factors like elevated CO2 and N. Despite the enormous importance of roots and rhizomes in acquiring soil resources and responding to global change, construction costs have been studied almost exclusively in leaves. We sought to determine how construction costs of aboveground and belowground organs differed between native and introduced lineages of a geographically widely dispersed wetland plant species (Phragmites australis) under varying levels of CO2 and N. We grew plants under ambient and elevated atmospheric CO2, as well as under two levels of soil nitrogen. We determined construction costs for leaves, stems, rhizomes and roots, as well as for whole plants. Across all treatment conditions, the introduced lineage of Phragmites had a 4.3 % lower mean rhizome construction cost than the native. Whole-plant construction costs were also smaller for the introduced lineage, with the largest difference in sample means (3.3 %) occurring under ambient conditions. In having lower rhizome and plant-scale construction costs, the introduced lineage can recoup its investment in tissue construction more quickly, enabling it to generate additional biomass with the same energetic investment. Our results suggest that introduced Phragmites has had an advantageous tissue investment strategy under historic CO2 and N levels, which has facilitated key rhizome processes, such as clonal spread. We recommend that construction costs for multiple organ types be included in future studies of plant carbon economy, especially those investigating global change.

  6. The advantages of a rolling foot in human walking.

    PubMed

    Adamczyk, Peter G; Collins, Steven H; Kuo, Arthur D

    2006-10-01

    The plantigrade human foot rolls over the ground during each walking step, roughly analogous to a wheel. The center of pressure progresses on the ground like a wheel of radius 0.3 L (leg length). We examined the effect of varying foot curvature on the mechanics and energetics of walking. We controlled curvature by attaching rigid arc shapes of various radii to the bottoms of rigid boots restricting ankle motion. We measured mechanical work performed on the center of mass (COM), and net metabolic rate, in human subjects (N=10) walking with seven arc radii from 0.02-0.40 m. Simple models of dynamic walking predict that redirection of COM velocity requires step-to-step transition work, decreasing quadratically with arc radius. Metabolic cost would be expected to change in proportion to mechanical work. We measured the average rate of negative work performed on the COM, and found that it followed the trend well (r2=0.95), with 2.37 times as much work for small radii as for large. Net metabolic rate (subtracting quiet standing) also decreased with increasing arc radius to a minimum at 0.3 L, with a slight increase thereafter. Maximum net metabolic rate was 6.25 W kg(-1) (for small-radius arc feet), about 59% greater than the minimum rate of 3.93 W kg(-1), which in turn was about 45% greater than the rate in normal walking. Metabolic rate was fit reasonably well (r2=0.86) by a quadratic curve, but exceeded that expected from COM work for extreme arc sizes. Other factors appear to increase metabolic cost for walking on very small and very large arc feet. These factors may include effort expended to stabilize the joints (especially the knee) or to maintain balance. Rolling feet with curvature 0.3 L appear energetically advantageous for plantigrade walking, partially due to decreased work for step-to-step transitions.

  7. Enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli gains a competitive advantage by using ethanolamine as a nitrogen source in the bovine intestinal content.

    PubMed

    Bertin, Yolande; Girardeau, J P; Chaucheyras-Durand, F; Lyan, Bernard; Pujos-Guillot, Estelle; Harel, Josée; Martin, Christine

    2011-02-01

    The bovine gastrointestinal tract is the main reservoir for enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) responsible for food-borne infections. Characterization of nutrients that promote the carriage of these pathogens by the ruminant would help to develop ecological strategies to reduce their survival in the bovine gastrointestinal tract. In this study, we show for the first time that free ethanolamine (EA) constitutes a nitrogen source for the O157:H7 EHEC strain EDL933 in the bovine intestinal content because of induction of the eut (ethanolamine utilization) gene cluster. In contrast, the eut gene cluster is absent in the genome of most species constituting the mammalian gut microbiota. Furthermore, the eutB gene (encoding a subunit of the enzyme that catalyses the release of ammonia from EA) is poorly expressed in non-pathogenic E. coli. Accordingly, EA is consumed by EHEC but is poorly metabolized by endogenous microbiota of the bovine small intestine, including commensal E. coli. Interestingly, the capacity to utilize EA as a nitrogen source confers a growth advantage to E. coli O157:H7 when the bacteria enter the stationary growth phase. These data demonstrate that EHEC strains take advantage of a nitrogen source that is not consumed by the resident microbiota, and suggest that EA represents an ecological niche favouring EHEC persistence in the bovine intestine.

  8. The development of a charge protocol to take advantage of off- and on-peak demand economics at facilities

    SciTech Connect

    Jeffrey Wishart

    2012-02-01

    This document reports the work performed under Task 1.2.1.1: 'The development of a charge protocol to take advantage of off- and on-peak demand economics at facilities'. The work involved in this task included understanding the experimental results of the other tasks of SOW-5799 in order to take advantage of the economics of electricity pricing differences between on- and off-peak hours and the demonstrated charging and facility energy demand profiles. To undertake this task and to demonstrate the feasibility of plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) and electric vehicle (EV) bi-directional electricity exchange potential, BEA has subcontracted Electric Transportation Applications (now known as ECOtality North America and hereafter ECOtality NA) to use the data from the demand and energy study to focus on reducing the electrical power demand of the charging facility. The use of delayed charging as well as vehicle-to-grid (V2G) and vehicle-to-building (V2B) operations were to be considered.

  9. Advances in pneumococcal vaccines: what are the advantages for the elderly?

    PubMed

    Vila-Córcoles, Angel

    2007-01-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae causes considerable morbidity and mortality in the elderly. There are three established approaches to pneumococcal vaccination: polysaccharide vaccines, protein-polysaccharide conjugate vaccines and protein-based vaccines. This article reviews advances in anti-pneumococcal vaccines, with reference to advantages and shortcomings for the elderly in particular. The 23-valent polysaccharide pneumococcal vaccine (PPV) is currently recommended for high-risk patients and the general elderly population. Although the effectiveness of PPV against pneumonia is unclear, recent studies point to significant protective effects in preventing pneumococcal pneumonia and reducing the severity of disease in vaccinated elderly patients. PPV offers high serotype coverage and, although it is poorly immunogenic in some individuals, provides approximately 60% protection against invasive disease in the general elderly population. PPV vaccination appears cost effective for elderly patients although the vaccine might only be effective in preventing invasive disease. Additional benefits could mean a greater level of vaccine cost effectiveness. However, it is important to understand that PPV provides incomplete protection, especially in those with underlying high-risk conditions, and development of more effective pneumococcal vaccination strategies for elderly patients is still needed. In recent years, the most important advance in the prevention of pneumococcal infections in the elderly has been the introduction of a 7-valent conjugate pneumococcal vaccine (CPV) as a routine vaccination for infants. In addition to dramatically reducing invasive infection in children, CPV has been observed to have a considerable indirect protective effect in parents and grandparents. While the possibility of using CPV in elderly patients has been suggested, currently there are only limited immunogenicity data and no efficacy data in adults. The low serotype coverage is an important

  10. Reduced Extended MHD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morrison, P. J.; Abdelhamid, H. M.; Grasso, D.; Hazeltine, R. D.; Lingam, M.; Tassi, E.

    2015-11-01

    Over the years various reduced fluid models have been obtained for modeling plasmas, with the goal of capturing important physics while maintaining computability. Such models have included the physics contained in various generalizations of Ohm's law, including Hall drift and electron inertia. In a recent publication it was shown that full 3D extended MHD is a Hamiltonian system by finding its noncanonical Poisson bracket. Subsequently, this bracket was shown to be derivable from that for Hall MHD by a series of remarkable transformations, which greatly simplifies the proof of the Jacobi identity and allows one to immediately obtain generalizations of the helicity and cross helicity. In this poster we use this structure to obtain exact reduced fluid models with the effects of full two-fluid theory. Results of numerical computations of collisionless reconnection using an exact reduced 4-field model will be presented and analytical comparisons of mode structure of previous reduced models will be made.

  11. Exposure-Based Cat Modeling, Available data, Advantages, & Limitations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michel, Gero; Hosoe, Taro; Schrah, Mike; Saito, Keiko

    2010-05-01

    This paper discusses the advantages and disadvantages of exposure data for cat-modeling and considers concepts of scale as well as the completeness of data and data scoring using field/model examples. Catastrophe modeling based on exposure data has been considered the panacea for insurance-related cat modeling since the late 1980's. Reasons for this include: • The ability to extend risk modeling to consider data beyond historical losses, • Usability across many relevant scales, • Flexibility in addressing complex structures and policy conditions, and • Ability to assess dependence of risk results on exposure-attributes and exposure-modifiers, such as lines of business, occupancy types, and mitigation features, at any given scale. In order to calculate related risk, monetary exposure is correlated to vulnerabilities that have been calibrated with historical results, plausibility concepts, and/or physical modeling. While exposure based modeling is widely adopted, we also need to be aware of its limitations which include: • Boundaries in our understanding of the distribution of exposure, • Spatial interdependence of exposure patterns and the time-dependence of exposure, • Incomplete availability of loss information to calibrate relevant exposure attributes/structure with related vulnerabilities and losses, • The scale-dependence of vulnerability, • Potential for missing or incomplete communication of assumptions made during model calibration, • Inefficiencies in the aggregation or disaggregation of vulnerabilities, and • Factors which can influence losses other than exposure, vulnerability, and hazard. Although we might assume that the higher the resolution the better, regional model calibration is often limited to lower than street level resolution with higher resolution being achieved by disaggregating results using topographic/roughness features with often loosely constrained and/or varying effects on losses. This suggests that higher accuracy

  12. Competitive Advantage and its Sources in an Evolving Market

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaridis, Apostolos D.

    2009-08-01

    In a continuously altered and evolving Market, as is the food manufacturing market, the main and long-lasting objective of firm that is the maximization of its wealth and consequently the continuous remaining in profit regions, appears that it is possible to be achieved via the obtainment and maintenance of diachronically long-term competitive advantage, which it will render the firm unique or leader force in a inexorable competition that is continuously extended in a globalized market. Various definitions and different regards are developed in regard to the competitive advantage and the way with which a firm it is possible, acquiring it, to star in the market in which it is activated. As result of sustainable competitive advantage in a firm comes the above the average performance. Abundance of resources and competences that are proposed as sources of competitive advantage in the resource-based view literature exists, while they are added continuously new based on empiric studies. In any case, it appears to suffer hierarchy of sources of competitive advantage, with regard to sustainability of these.

  13. Advantages of Picosecond Laser Machining for Cutting-Edge Technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moorhouse, C.

    The demand to reduce the size, weight and material cost of modern electronic devices results in a requirement for precision micromachining to aid product development. Examples include making smaller and more powerful smartphones with brighter displays, eliminating the requirement for post-process cleaning and machining the latest bio- absorbable medical stents. The pace of innovation in high-tech industries has led to ultrafast (picosecond) industrial lasers becoming an important tool for many applications and the high repetition rates now available help to meet industrial throughput levels. This is due to the unique operating regime (megawatts of peak power) enabling clean cutting and patterning of sensitive materials and thin films used in a number of novel devices and allows micromachining of wide bandgap, "difficult" materials such as glass.

  14. Advantages of High Tolerance Measurements in Fusion Environments Applying Photogrammetry

    SciTech Connect

    T. Dodson, R. Ellis, C. Priniski, S. Raftopoulos, D. Stevens, M. Viola

    2009-02-04

    Photogrammetry, a state-of-the-art technique of metrology employing digital photographs as the vehicle for measurement, has been investigated in the fusion environment. Benefits of this high tolerance methodology include relatively easy deployment for multiple point measurements and deformation/distortion studies. Depending on the equipment used, photogrammetric systems can reach tolerances of 25 microns (0.001 in) to 100 microns (0.004 in) on a 3-meter object. During the fabrication and assembly of the National Compact Stellarator Experiment (NCSX) the primary measurement systems deployed were CAD coordinate-based computer metrology equipment and supporting algorithms such as both interferometer-aided (IFM) and absolute distance measurementbased (ADM) laser trackers, as well as portable Coordinate Measurement Machine (CMM) arms. Photogrammetry was employed at NCSX as a quick and easy tool to monitor coil distortions incurred during welding operations of the machine assembly process and as a way to reduce assembly downtime for metrology processes.

  15. The relation between proactive environmental strategies and competitive advantage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butnariu, A.; Avasilcăi, S.

    2015-11-01

    There are two distinct orientations of the environmental management that companies may adopt: the model of compliance and the strategic model. The strategic model treats environmental expenses as investments that will lead to competitive advantage for the company. Nevertheless, there are few scientific works that prove the relation between corporate environmental investments and competitive advantage. Thereby, in order to bring clarifications about the profound implications of environmental investments, in the first stage of our research we have proposed the hypothesis that the environmental investments would probably lead to competitive advantage by creating capabilities that are mediators of this relation. In the second stage we have tested this hypothesis, using the research method of survey. A questionnaire was sent to managers in textile Romanian industry, and 109 answers were received. The data was analysed using the linear multiple regression method and the results confirm our hypothesis.

  16. The bilateral advantage for famous faces: interhemispheric communication or competition?

    PubMed

    Baird, Lyndsay M; Burton, A Mike

    2008-04-01

    The bilateral advantage for the perception of famous faces was investigated using a redundant target procedure. In experiment 1 we compared simultaneous presentation of stimuli (a) bilaterally and (b) one above the other in the central field. Results showed a redundancy advantage, but only when faces were presented bilaterally. This result lends support to the notion of interhemispheric communication using cross-hemisphere representations. Experiment 2 examined the nature of such communication by comparing bilateral presentation of identical face images, with bilateral presentation of different images of the same person. When asked to make a familiar/unfamiliar face judgement, participants showed evidence for a redundancy advantage under both bilateral conditions. This suggests that the nature of the information shared in interhemispheric communication is abstract, rather than being tied to superficial stimulus properties.

  17. Advantage of rare HLA supertype in HIV disease progression.

    PubMed

    Trachtenberg, Elizabeth; Korber, Bette; Sollars, Cristina; Kepler, Thomas B; Hraber, Peter T; Hayes, Elizabeth; Funkhouser, Robert; Fugate, Michael; Theiler, James; Hsu, Yen S; Kunstman, Kevin; Wu, Samuel; Phair, John; Erlich, Henry; Wolinsky, Steven

    2003-07-01

    The highly polymorphic human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I molecules help to determine the specificity and repertoire of the immune response. The great diversity of these antigen-binding molecules confers differential advantages in responding to pathogens, but presents a major obstacle to distinguishing HLA allele-specific effects. HLA class I supertypes provide a functional classification for the many different HLA alleles that overlap in their peptide-binding specificities. We analyzed the association of these discrete HLA supertypes with HIV disease progression rates in a population of HIV-infected men. We found that HLA supertypes alone and in combination conferred a strong differential advantage in responding to HIV infection, independent of the contribution of single HLA alleles that associate with progression of the disease. The correlation of the frequency of the HLA supertypes with viral load suggests that HIV adapts to the most frequent alleles in the population, providing a selective advantage for those individuals who express rare alleles.

  18. Minimally Invasive Suturectomy and Postoperative Helmet Therapy : Advantages and Limitations

    PubMed Central

    Chong, Sangjoon; Wang, Kyu-Chang; Phi, Ji Hoon; Lee, Ji Yeoun

    2016-01-01

    Various operative techniques are available for the treatment of craniosynostosis. The patient's age at presentation is one of the most important factors in the determination of the surgical modality. Minimally invasive suturectomy and postoperative helmet therapy may be performed for relatively young infants, whose age is younger than 6 months. It relies upon the potential for rapid brain growth in this age group. Its minimal invasiveness is also advantageous. In this article, we review the advantages and limitations of minimally invasive suturectomy followed by helmet therapy for the treatment of craniosynostosis. PMID:27226853

  19. Quantum communication complexity advantage implies violation of a Bell inequality.

    PubMed

    Buhrman, Harry; Czekaj, Łukasz; Grudka, Andrzej; Horodecki, Michał; Horodecki, Paweł; Markiewicz, Marcin; Speelman, Florian; Strelchuk, Sergii

    2016-03-22

    We obtain a general connection between a large quantum advantage in communication complexity and Bell nonlocality. We show that given any protocol offering a sufficiently large quantum advantage in communication complexity, there exists a way of obtaining measurement statistics that violate some Bell inequality. Our main tool is port-based teleportation. If the gap between quantum and classical communication complexity can grow arbitrarily large, the ratio of the quantum value to the classical value of the Bell quantity becomes unbounded with the increase in the number of inputs and outputs. PMID:26957600

  20. Quantum communication complexity advantage implies violation of a Bell inequality

    PubMed Central

    Buhrman, Harry; Czekaj, Łukasz; Grudka, Andrzej; Horodecki, Michał; Horodecki, Paweł; Markiewicz, Marcin; Speelman, Florian; Strelchuk, Sergii

    2016-01-01

    We obtain a general connection between a large quantum advantage in communication complexity and Bell nonlocality. We show that given any protocol offering a sufficiently large quantum advantage in communication complexity, there exists a way of obtaining measurement statistics that violate some Bell inequality. Our main tool is port-based teleportation. If the gap between quantum and classical communication complexity can grow arbitrarily large, the ratio of the quantum value to the classical value of the Bell quantity becomes unbounded with the increase in the number of inputs and outputs. PMID:26957600

  1. Spatial Ability Explains the Male Advantage in Approximate Arithmetic

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Wei; Chen, Chuansheng; Zhou, Xinlin

    2016-01-01

    Previous research has shown that females consistently outperform males in exact arithmetic, perhaps due to the former’s advantage in language processing. Much less is known about gender difference in approximate arithmetic. Given that approximate arithmetic is closely associated with visuospatial processing, which shows a male advantage we hypothesized that males would perform better than females in approximate arithmetic. In two experiments (496 children in Experiment 1 and 554 college students in Experiment 2), we found that males showed better performance in approximate arithmetic, which was accounted for by gender differences in spatial ability. PMID:27014124

  2. Quantum communication complexity advantage implies violation of a Bell inequality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buhrman, Harry; Czekaj, Łukasz; Grudka, Andrzej; Horodecki, Michał; Horodecki, Paweł; Markiewicz, Marcin; Speelman, Florian; Strelchuk, Sergii

    2016-03-01

    We obtain a general connection between a large quantum advantage in communication complexity and Bell nonlocality. We show that given any protocol offering a sufficiently large quantum advantage in communication complexity, there exists a way of obtaining measurement statistics that violate some Bell inequality. Our main tool is port-based teleportation. If the gap between quantum and classical communication complexity can grow arbitrarily large, the ratio of the quantum value to the classical value of the Bell quantity becomes unbounded with the increase in the number of inputs and outputs.

  3. Quantum communication complexity advantage implies violation of a Bell inequality.

    PubMed

    Buhrman, Harry; Czekaj, Łukasz; Grudka, Andrzej; Horodecki, Michał; Horodecki, Paweł; Markiewicz, Marcin; Speelman, Florian; Strelchuk, Sergii

    2016-03-22

    We obtain a general connection between a large quantum advantage in communication complexity and Bell nonlocality. We show that given any protocol offering a sufficiently large quantum advantage in communication complexity, there exists a way of obtaining measurement statistics that violate some Bell inequality. Our main tool is port-based teleportation. If the gap between quantum and classical communication complexity can grow arbitrarily large, the ratio of the quantum value to the classical value of the Bell quantity becomes unbounded with the increase in the number of inputs and outputs.

  4. Robotic radical prostatectomy: advantages of an initial posterior dissection.

    PubMed

    Zorn, Kevin C

    2008-09-01

    During robotic radical prostatectomy (RRP), many surgeons currently employ the modified-Montsouris technique as initially described by Menon in 2002 with initial anterior prostate dissection. The anterior approach simulates the routine retropubic technique which open surgeons feel most comfortable with. Unfortunately, we observed early on in our experience that dissection of the seminal vesicles (SV) and vas deferens (VD) through a limited sized bladder neck posed limitations on working space and anatomic differentiation. As such, we have continued using a posterior-first dissection for several specific advantages. Herein, we describe our initial posterior dissection during RRP and discuss potential advantages of this approach, particularly for novice robotic surgeons. PMID:27628248

  5. Competitive Advantage in Intercollegiate Athletics: Role of Intangible Resources.

    PubMed

    Won, Doyeon; Chelladurai, Packianathan

    2016-01-01

    The present research explored the dynamics of competitive advantages in intercollegiate athletics by investigating the contribution of intangible resources (i.e., athletic and academic reputations) on the generation of more tangible resources (i.e., human and financial resources), which in turn influence the athletic performance (i.e., winning record) and academic performance (i.e., graduation rates), and gender equity. The research was based entirely on archival data of 324 NCAA Division I member institutions. The results of the SEM supported the study's basic arguments that tangible resources are the sources of competitive advantages in Division I intercollegiate athletics, and that intangible resources contribute to the generation of tangible resources.

  6. Neoclassical Transport Including Collisional Nonlinearity

    SciTech Connect

    Candy, J.; Belli, E. A.

    2011-06-10

    In the standard {delta}f theory of neoclassical transport, the zeroth-order (Maxwellian) solution is obtained analytically via the solution of a nonlinear equation. The first-order correction {delta}f is subsequently computed as the solution of a linear, inhomogeneous equation that includes the linearized Fokker-Planck collision operator. This equation admits analytic solutions only in extreme asymptotic limits (banana, plateau, Pfirsch-Schlueter), and so must be solved numerically for realistic plasma parameters. Recently, numerical codes have appeared which attempt to compute the total distribution f more accurately than in the standard ordering by retaining some nonlinear terms related to finite-orbit width, while simultaneously reusing some form of the linearized collision operator. In this work we show that higher-order corrections to the distribution function may be unphysical if collisional nonlinearities are ignored.

  7. Including Magnetostriction in Micromagnetic Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conbhuí, Pádraig Ó.; Williams, Wyn; Fabian, Karl; Nagy, Lesleis

    2016-04-01

    The magnetic anomalies that identify crustal spreading are predominantly recorded by basalts formed at the mid-ocean ridges, whose magnetic signals are dominated by iron-titanium-oxides (Fe3-xTixO4), so called "titanomagnetites", of which the Fe2.4Ti0.6O4 (TM60) phase is the most common. With sufficient quantities of titanium present, these minerals exhibit strong magnetostriction. To date, models of these grains in the pseudo-single domain (PSD) range have failed to accurately account for this effect. In particular, a popular analytic treatment provided by Kittel (1949) for describing the magnetostrictive energy as an effective increase of the anisotropy constant can produce unphysical strains for non-uniform magnetizations. I will present a rigorous approach based on work by Brown (1966) and by Kroner (1958) for including magnetostriction in micromagnetic codes which is suitable for modelling hysteresis loops and finding remanent states in the PSD regime. Preliminary results suggest the more rigorously defined micromagnetic models exhibit higher coercivities and extended single domain ranges when compared to more simplistic approaches.

  8. Criterion Referenced Test: Some Advantages and Disadvantages for Science Instruction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Esler, William K.; Dziuban, Charles D.

    1974-01-01

    Discusses the criterion referenced test and focuses on such questions as What is it? What are the advantages to be gained from a performance-based curriculum and criterion reference evaluation procedures? What are the disadvantages? The Science - A Process Approach program is identified as the most complete and tested example of the use of…

  9. Congruent Knowledge Management Behaviors as Discriminate Sources of Competitive Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Magnier-Watanabe, Remy; Senoo, Dai

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: While knowledge management has been shown to be a strategic source of competitive advantage, processes designed to enhance the productivity of knowledge do not, however, equally contribute to the organization's capabilities. Consequently, this research aims to focus on the relationship between each mode of the knowledge management process…

  10. Analytical advantages of multivariate data processing. One, two, three, infinity?

    PubMed

    Olivieri, Alejandro C

    2008-08-01

    Multidimensional data are being abundantly produced by modern analytical instrumentation, calling for new and powerful data-processing techniques. Research in the last two decades has resulted in the development of a multitude of different processing algorithms, each equipped with its own sophisticated artillery. Analysts have slowly discovered that this body of knowledge can be appropriately classified, and that common aspects pervade all these seemingly different ways of analyzing data. As a result, going from univariate data (a single datum per sample, employed in the well-known classical univariate calibration) to multivariate data (data arrays per sample of increasingly complex structure and number of dimensions) is known to provide a gain in sensitivity and selectivity, combined with analytical advantages which cannot be overestimated. The first-order advantage, achieved using vector sample data, allows analysts to flag new samples which cannot be adequately modeled with the current calibration set. The second-order advantage, achieved with second- (or higher-) order sample data, allows one not only to mark new samples containing components which do not occur in the calibration phase but also to model their contribution to the overall signal, and most importantly, to accurately quantitate the calibrated analyte(s). No additional analytical advantages appear to be known for third-order data processing. Future research may permit, among other interesting issues, to assess if this "1, 2, 3, infinity" situation of multivariate calibration is really true. PMID:18613646

  11. Strategic Mergers of Strong Institutions to Enhance Competitive Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harman, Grant; Harman, Kay

    2008-01-01

    Strategic mergers are formal combinations or amalgamations of higher education institutions with the aim of enhancing competitive advantage, or merging for "mutual growth". Recently, in a number of countries, there has been a decided shift from mergers initiated by governments, and dealing mainly with "problem" cases, towards…

  12. Upward Wealth Mobility: Exploring the Roman Catholic Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keister, Lisa A.

    2007-01-01

    Wealth inequality is among the most extreme forms of stratification in the United States, and upward wealth mobility is not common. Yet mobility is possible, and this paper takes advantage of trends among a unique group to explore the processes that generate mobility. I show that non-Hispanic whites raised in Roman Catholic families have been…

  13. Advantages and Disadvantages of Student Loans Repayment Patterns

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shen, Hua

    2010-01-01

    It is a difficulty problem to choice repayment patterns of student loan. "Conventional mortgage-type loan" and "Income contingent loan" has been performed in many countries. These loan repayment manners have their own characteristics. In this paper, we discuss their advantages and disadvantages, and would provide policy choice…

  14. Emerging Bilingualism: Dissociating Advantages for Metalinguistic Awareness and Executive Control

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bialystok, Ellen; Barac, Raluca

    2012-01-01

    The present studies revealed different factors associated with the reported advantages found in fully bilingual children for metalinguistic awareness and executive control. Participants were 100 children in Study 1 and 80 children in Study 2 in the process of becoming bilingual by attending immersion programs. In both studies, "level of…

  15. The UNIX/XENIX Advantage: Applications in Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gordon, Kelly L.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses the application of the UNIX/XENIX operating system to support administrative office automation functions--word processing, spreadsheets, database management systems, electronic mail, and communications--at the Central Michigan University Libraries. Advantages and disadvantages of the XENIX operating system and system configuration are…

  16. A microbial model of economic trading and comparative advantage.

    PubMed

    Enyeart, Peter J; Simpson, Zachary B; Ellington, Andrew D

    2015-01-01

    The economic theory of comparative advantage postulates that beneficial trading relationships can be arrived at by two self-interested entities producing the same goods as long as they have opposing relative efficiencies in producing those goods. The theory predicts that upon entering trade, in order to maximize consumption both entities will specialize in producing the good they can produce at higher efficiency, that the weaker entity will specialize more completely than the stronger entity, and that both will be able to consume more goods as a result of trade than either would be able to alone. We extend this theory to the realm of unicellular organisms by developing mathematical models of genetic circuits that allow trading of a common good (specifically, signaling molecules) required for growth in bacteria in order to demonstrate comparative advantage interactions. In Conception 1, the experimenter controls production rates via exogenous inducers, allowing exploration of the parameter space of specialization. In Conception 2, the circuits self-regulate via feedback mechanisms. Our models indicate that these genetic circuits can demonstrate comparative advantage, and that cooperation in such a manner is particularly favored under stringent external conditions and when the cost of production is not overly high. Further work could involve implementing the models in living bacteria and searching for naturally occurring cooperative relationships between bacteria that conform to the principles of comparative advantage.

  17. Multidimensional epistasis and the transitory advantage of sex.

    PubMed

    Nowak, Stefan; Neidhart, Johannes; Szendro, Ivan G; Krug, Joachim

    2014-09-01

    Identifying and quantifying the benefits of sex and recombination is a long-standing problem in evolutionary theory. In particular, contradictory claims have been made about the existence of a benefit of recombination on high dimensional fitness landscapes in the presence of sign epistasis. Here we present a comparative numerical study of sexual and asexual evolutionary dynamics of haploids on tunably rugged model landscapes under strong selection, paying special attention to the temporal development of the evolutionary advantage of recombination and the link between population diversity and the rate of adaptation. We show that the adaptive advantage of recombination on static rugged landscapes is strictly transitory. At early times, an advantage of recombination arises through the possibility to combine individually occurring beneficial mutations, but this effect is reversed at longer times by the much more efficient trapping of recombining populations at local fitness peaks. These findings are explained by means of well-established results for a setup with only two loci. In accordance with the Red Queen hypothesis the transitory advantage can be prolonged indefinitely in fluctuating environments, and it is maximal when the environment fluctuates on the same time scale on which trapping at local optima typically occurs.

  18. Sustainable Competitive Advantage for Educational Institutions: A Suggested Model.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mazzarol, Tim; Soutar, Geoffrey Norman

    1999-01-01

    Outlines a model of factors critical to establishing and maintaining sustainable competitive advantage for education-services enterprises in international markets. The model, which combines industrial economics, management theory, and services marketing, seeks to explain the strategic decision-making environment in which the education exporter…

  19. Educating Students to Give Them a Sustainable Competitive Advantage

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopkins, Christopher D.; Raymond, Mary Anne; Carlson, Les

    2011-01-01

    With an increasingly competitive job market, this study focuses on what marketing educators can do to help students develop a sustainable competitive advantage. The authors conducted a survey of students, faculty, and recruiters to develop a better understanding of what skills and characteristics might be of value to each group of respondents and…

  20. Enduring Advantages of Early Cochlear Implantation for Spoken Language Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Geers, Anne E.; Nicholas, Johanna G.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: In this article, the authors sought to determine whether the precise age of implantation (AOI) remains an important predictor of spoken language outcomes in later childhood for those who received a cochlear implant (CI) between 12 and 38 months of age. Relative advantages of receiving a bilateral CI after age 4.5 years, better…

  1. A Bilateral Advantage for Storage in Visual Working Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Umemoto, Akina; Drew, Trafton; Ester, Edward F.; Awh, Edward

    2010-01-01

    Various studies have demonstrated enhanced visual processing when information is presented across both visual hemifields rather than in a single hemifield (the "bilateral advantage"). For example, Alvarez and Cavanagh (2005) reported that observers were able to track twice as many moving visual stimuli when the tracked items were presented…

  2. The Take Advantage Now/Parent Education Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walters, David

    1987-01-01

    The Take Advantage Now/Parent Education Project (TAN/PEP) is based on the knowledge that college students need their parents' help for academic success. The program was developed at Brooklyn College to offer education, support, and counseling for parents and guardians of entering freshmen who have been accepted in a program known as Search,…

  3. Cognitive Advantages and Disadvantages in Early and Late Bilinguals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pelham, Sabra D.; Abrams, Lise

    2014-01-01

    Previous research has documented advantages and disadvantages of early bilinguals, defined as learning a 2nd language by school age and using both languages since that time. Relative to monolinguals, early bilinguals manifest deficits in lexical access but benefits in executive function. We investigated whether becoming bilingual "after"…

  4. Financial advantages of operating a skilled nursing unit.

    PubMed

    Fogel, L A

    1994-07-01

    Hospitals may accrue specific financial advantages from the operations of a skilled nursing unit (SNU), such as the ability to allocate some fixed costs to a hospital-based unit that receives cost-based reimbursement from Medicare. The level of reimbursement SNUs receive from Medicare, however, can be optimized by obtaining an exemption or an exception to routine cost limits.

  5. Career management: a competitive advantage in today's health care marketplace.

    PubMed

    Bourbeau, J

    2001-01-01

    A valuable new tool to attract and retain new employees is being used by some of the most progressive companies in Michigan. It is called career management, and it is being used with great success by businesses of all types to give themselves a competitive advantage.

  6. Advantages of Laser Polarimetry Applied to Tequila Industrial Process Control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fajer, V.; Rodriguez, C.; Flores, R.; Naranjo, S.; Cossio, G.; Lopez, J.

    2002-03-01

    The development of a polarimetric method for crude and cooked agave juice quality control not only by direct polarimetric measurement also by means of laser polarimeter LASERPOL 101M used as a liquid chromatographic detector is presented. The viability and advantage of this method for raw material quality control and during Tequila industrial process is shown.

  7. Tangential finger forces use mechanical advantage during static grasping.

    PubMed

    Slota, Gregory P; Latash, Mark L; Zatsiorsky, Vladimir M

    2012-02-01

    When grasping and manipulating objects, the central controller utilizes the mechanical advantage of the normal forces of the fingers for torque production. Whether the same is valid for tangential forces is unknown. The main purpose of this study was to determine the patterns of finger tangential forces and the use of mechanical advantage as a control mechanism when dealing with objects of nonuniform finger positioning. A complementary goal was to explore the interaction of mechanical advantage (moment arm) and the role a finger has as a torque agonist/antagonist with respect to external torques (±0.4 N m). Five 6-df force/torque transducers measured finger forces while subjects held a prism handle (6 cm width × 9 cm height) with and without a single finger displaced 2 cm (handle width). The effect of increasing the tangential moment arm was significant (p < .01) for increasing tangential forces (in >70% of trials) and hence creating greater moments. Thus, the data provides evidence that the grasping system as a rule utilizes mechanical advantage for generating tangential forces. The increase in tangential force was independent of whether the finger was acting as a torque agonist or antagonist, revealing their effects to be additive. PMID:22431218

  8. Elasticity and Mechanical Advantage in Cables and Ropes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Shea, M. J.

    2007-01-01

    Abstract. The conditions under which one can gain mechanical advantage by pulling with a force F perpendicular to a cable (or rope) that is fixed at both ends are examined. While this is a commonly discussed example in introductory physics classes, its solution in terms of fundamental properties of the cable requires one to model the elasticity of…

  9. Advantages of In-house Audio Visual Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burrell, Ralph

    1978-01-01

    Although the primary advantage of having an in-plant audiovisual production unit is having creative and technical personnel on hand when you most need them, experience shows that such a unit can also provide real benefits to the company both in terms of higher quality and lower costs. (VT)

  10. Advantages and Limitations of the RICH Technique for Particle Identification

    SciTech Connect

    Ratcliff, Blair N.; /SLAC

    2011-11-07

    The ring imaging Cherenkov (RICH) technique for hadronic particle identification (PID) is described. The advantages and limitations of RICH PID counters are compared with those of other classic PID techniques, such as threshold Cherenkov counters, ionization loss (dE/dx) in tracking devices, and time of flight (TOF) detectors.

  11. A Working Memory, Not Bilingual Advantage, in Controlled Attention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Namazi, Mahchid; Thordardottir, Elin

    2010-01-01

    We explored the relationship between working memory (WM) and visually controlled attention (CA) in young bilingual and monolingual children. Previous research has shown that balanced bilingual children outperform monolinguals in CA. However, it is unclear whether this advantage is truly associated with bilingualism or whether potential WM and/or…

  12. Online Data Collection in Academic Research: Advantages and Limitations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lefever, Samuel; Dal, Michael; Matthiasdottir, Asrun

    2007-01-01

    Online data collection in academic research might be replacing paper-and-pencil surveys or questionnaires in the near future. This paper discusses the advantages and limitations of online data collection, with particular reference to the conduct of two qualitative studies involving upper secondary school teachers and students in Iceland in 2002.…

  13. Tangential finger forces use mechanical advantage during static grasping.

    PubMed

    Slota, Gregory P; Latash, Mark L; Zatsiorsky, Vladimir M

    2012-02-01

    When grasping and manipulating objects, the central controller utilizes the mechanical advantage of the normal forces of the fingers for torque production. Whether the same is valid for tangential forces is unknown. The main purpose of this study was to determine the patterns of finger tangential forces and the use of mechanical advantage as a control mechanism when dealing with objects of nonuniform finger positioning. A complementary goal was to explore the interaction of mechanical advantage (moment arm) and the role a finger has as a torque agonist/antagonist with respect to external torques (±0.4 N m). Five 6-df force/torque transducers measured finger forces while subjects held a prism handle (6 cm width × 9 cm height) with and without a single finger displaced 2 cm (handle width). The effect of increasing the tangential moment arm was significant (p < .01) for increasing tangential forces (in >70% of trials) and hence creating greater moments. Thus, the data provides evidence that the grasping system as a rule utilizes mechanical advantage for generating tangential forces. The increase in tangential force was independent of whether the finger was acting as a torque agonist or antagonist, revealing their effects to be additive.

  14. TAKING SCIENTIFIC ADVANTAGE OF A DISASTROUS OIL SPILL

    EPA Science Inventory

    On 19 January 1996, the North Cape barge ran aground on Moonstone Beach in southern Rhode Island, releasing 828,000 gallons of refined oil. This opportunistic study was designed to take scientific advantage of the most severely affected seabird, the common loon (Gavia immer) . As...

  15. Providing Homeless Adults with Advantage: A Sustainable University Degree Program

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sinatra, Richard; Lanctot, Melissa Kim

    2016-01-01

    A university partnered with the New York City Department of Homeless Services (NYC DHS) to provide cohorts of adults a 60-credit Associate Degree Program in Business Administration over a 2-year period. Results of two cohorts of 30 Advantage Academy Program graduates revealed significant improvement in College Board AccuPlacer (ACPL) Arithmetic…

  16. Naval electrochemical corrosion reducer

    DOEpatents

    Clark, Howard L.

    1991-10-01

    A corrosion reducer for use with ships having a hull, a propeller mounted a propeller shaft and extending through the hull, bearings supporting the shaft, at least one thrust bearing and one seal. The improvement includes a current collector and a current reduction assembly for reducing the voltage between the hull and shaft in order to reduce corrosion due to electrolytic action. The current reduction assembly includes an electrical contact, the current collector, and the hull. The current reduction assembly further includes a device for sensing and measuring the voltage between the hull and the shaft and a device for applying a reverse voltage between the hull and the shaft so that the resulting voltage differential is from 0 to 0.05 volts. The current reduction assembly further includes a differential amplifier having a voltage differential between the hull and the shaft. The current reduction assembly further includes an amplifier and a power output circuit receiving signals from the differential amplifier and being supplied by at least one current supply. The current selector includes a brush assembly in contact with a slip ring over the shaft so that its potential may be applied to the differential amplifier.

  17. Demonstrating Reduced Gravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pearlman, Howard; Stocker, Dennis; Gotti, Daniel; Urban, David; Ross, Howard; Sours, Thomas

    1996-01-01

    A miniature drop tower, Reduced-Gravity Demonstrator is developed to illustrate the effects of gravity on a variety of phenomena including the way fluids flow, flames burn, and mechanical systems (such as pendulum) behave. A schematic and description of the demonstrator and payloads are given, followed by suggestions for how one can build his (her) own.

  18. Cryptic gametic interactions confer both conspecific and heterospecific advantages in the Chrysochus (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) hybrid zone.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Merrill A; Larson, Erica L; Brassil, Margaret; Buckingham, Kati J; Juárez, Danielle; Deas, Joseph; Mangloña, Donna; White, Michael A; Maslan, Jonathan; Schweitzer, Andrew; Monsen, Kirsten J

    2011-05-01

    Most species pairs are isolated through the collective action of a suite of barriers. Recent work has shown that cryptic barriers such as conspecific sperm precedence can be quite strong, suggesting that they evolve quickly. However, because the strength of multiple barriers has been formally quantified in very few systems, the relative speed with which conspecific sperm precedence evolves remains unclear. Here, we measure the strength of both conspecific sperm precedence and cryptic non-competitive isolation between the hybridizing sister species, Chrysochus auratus and C. cobaltinus (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), and compare the strength of those barriers to the strength of other known reproductive barriers in this system. Overall, cryptic barriers in this system are weaker than other barriers, indicating that they have not evolved rapidly. Furthermore, their evolution has been asymmetric. Non-competitive barriers substantially reduce the production of hybrid offspring by C. auratus females but not by C. cobaltinus females. In multiply-mated C. cobaltinus females, heterospecific sperm outcompete conspecific sperm, as evidenced by the fact that heterospecific males sired disproportionately more offspring than predicted from the results for singly-mated females. In C. auratus females, neither sperm type has a competitive advantage. Such asymmetries explain why nearly all F1 hybrids in the field are from crosses between C. cobaltinus females and C. auratus males. We discuss these findings in terms of understanding the cost of mating 'mistakes' in the Chrysochus hybrid zone. In addition, our discovery that 95% confidence intervals for commonly-used isolation statistics can be very wide has important implications for speciation research. Specifically, to avoid biases in the interpretation of such isolation metrics, we suggest that studies should routinely include error estimates in their analyses of reproductive isolation.

  19. Medicare Advantage: options for standardizing benefits and information to improve consumer choice.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Ellen; Hoadley, Jack

    2008-04-01

    The Medicare Advantage (MA) program offers beneficiaries a choice of private health plans as alternatives to the traditional fee-for-service Medicare program. MA plans potentially provide additional value, but as plan choices have proliferated, consumers contemplating their options have had difficulty understanding how they differ. Through "standardization" more consistent types of information and a limited number of dimensions along which plans vary--MA plans could reduce complexity and improve beneficiaries' ability to make informed choices. Such standardization steps would offer more meaningful variation in the health coverage options available to beneficiaries, Medicare officials and their community partners would find it far easier to educate beneficiaries about their health plan choices, and beneficiaries would better understand what they were buying. Standardization might also strengthen the ability of the market-based Medicare Advantage program to incorporate beneficiary preferences. PMID:18426037

  20. The Down syndrome advantage: it depends on what and when you measure.

    PubMed

    Glidden, Laraine Masters; Grein, Katherine Anne; Ludwig, Jesse Andrew

    2014-09-01

    A "Down syndrome advantage"--better outcomes for individuals with Down syndrome and their families than for those with other intellectual/developmental disabilities (IDD)--is reduced when variables confounded with diagnostic category are controlled. We compared maternal outcomes in a longitudinal sample of families rearing children with Down syndrome or other IDD, and found that a Down syndrome advantage is (a) most likely when the metric is about the son/daughter rather than the parent or family more globally, (b) may be present or absent at different ages, and (c) is partially explained by higher levels of adaptive behavior for individuals with Down syndrome. We discuss the importance of multiple measures at multiple times, and implications for family expectations and adjustment at various life stages.

  1. Development of the deontic advantage in reasoning: reply to Cummins.

    PubMed

    Astington, Janet Wilde; Dack, Lisa Ain

    2013-11-01

    In response to Cummins's report that comments on our article (Dack & Astington, Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 2011, Vol. 110, pp. 94-114), this article clarifies our perspective on what constitutes the deontic advantage, and notes similarities and differences between Cummins's perspective and our own. Like Cummins, we believe that young children are capable of deontic reasoning and that methodological factors alone cannot explain this ability. However, we maintain that it is important to be precise about methodology in order to facilitate investigation of how the deontic advantage changes over developmental time, and this question is our main interest, although as yet incompletely answered. Contrary to Cummins, we do not think that existing data can speak to the issue of the potential innateness of deontic reasoning. We also disagree with Cummins's perspective on norm versus normative proposition and with some of her comparisons between deontic and epistemic phenomena.

  2. Environmental structure and competitive scoring advantages in team competitions.

    PubMed

    Merritt, Sears; Clauset, Aaron

    2013-10-29

    In most professional sports, playing field structure is kept neutral so that scoring imbalances may be attributed to differences in team skill. It thus remains unknown what impact environmental heterogeneities can have on scoring dynamics or competitive advantages. Applying a novel generative model of scoring dynamics to roughly 10 million team competitions drawn from an online game, we quantify the relationship between the structure within a competition and its scoring dynamics, while controlling the impact of chance. Despite wide structural variations, we observe a common three-phase pattern in the tempo of events. Tempo and balance are highly predictable from a competition's structural features alone and teams exploit environmental heterogeneities for sustained competitive advantage. Surprisingly, the most balanced competitions are associated with specific environmental heterogeneities, not from equally skilled teams. These results shed new light on the design principles of balanced competition, and illustrate the potential of online game data for investigating social dynamics and competition.

  3. Competitive Advantage in Intercollegiate Athletics: Role of Intangible Resources

    PubMed Central

    Won, Doyeon; Chelladurai, Packianathan

    2016-01-01

    The present research explored the dynamics of competitive advantages in intercollegiate athletics by investigating the contribution of intangible resources (i.e., athletic and academic reputations) on the generation of more tangible resources (i.e., human and financial resources), which in turn influence the athletic performance (i.e., winning record) and academic performance (i.e., graduation rates), and gender equity. The research was based entirely on archival data of 324 NCAA Division I member institutions. The results of the SEM supported the study’s basic arguments that tangible resources are the sources of competitive advantages in Division I intercollegiate athletics, and that intangible resources contribute to the generation of tangible resources. PMID:26731118

  4. Environmental structure and competitive scoring advantages in team competitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merritt, Sears; Clauset, Aaron

    2013-10-01

    In most professional sports, playing field structure is kept neutral so that scoring imbalances may be attributed to differences in team skill. It thus remains unknown what impact environmental heterogeneities can have on scoring dynamics or competitive advantages. Applying a novel generative model of scoring dynamics to roughly 10 million team competitions drawn from an online game, we quantify the relationship between the structure within a competition and its scoring dynamics, while controlling the impact of chance. Despite wide structural variations, we observe a common three-phase pattern in the tempo of events. Tempo and balance are highly predictable from a competition's structural features alone and teams exploit environmental heterogeneities for sustained competitive advantage. Surprisingly, the most balanced competitions are associated with specific environmental heterogeneities, not from equally skilled teams. These results shed new light on the design principles of balanced competition, and illustrate the potential of online game data for investigating social dynamics and competition.

  5. Paedomorphic facial expressions give dogs a selective advantage.

    PubMed

    Waller, Bridget M; Peirce, Kate; Caeiro, Cátia C; Scheider, Linda; Burrows, Anne M; McCune, Sandra; Kaminski, Juliane

    2013-01-01

    How wolves were first domesticated is unknown. One hypothesis suggests that wolves underwent a process of self-domestication by tolerating human presence and taking advantage of scavenging possibilities. The puppy-like physical and behavioural traits seen in dogs are thought to have evolved later, as a byproduct of selection against aggression. Using speed of selection from rehoming shelters as a proxy for artificial selection, we tested whether paedomorphic features give dogs a selective advantage in their current environment. Dogs who exhibited facial expressions that enhance their neonatal appearance were preferentially selected by humans. Thus, early domestication of wolves may have occurred not only as wolf populations became tamer, but also as they exploited human preferences for paedomorphic characteristics. These findings, therefore, add to our understanding of early dog domestication as a complex co-evolutionary process.

  6. Paedomorphic facial expressions give dogs a selective advantage.

    PubMed

    Waller, Bridget M; Peirce, Kate; Caeiro, Cátia C; Scheider, Linda; Burrows, Anne M; McCune, Sandra; Kaminski, Juliane

    2013-01-01

    How wolves were first domesticated is unknown. One hypothesis suggests that wolves underwent a process of self-domestication by tolerating human presence and taking advantage of scavenging possibilities. The puppy-like physical and behavioural traits seen in dogs are thought to have evolved later, as a byproduct of selection against aggression. Using speed of selection from rehoming shelters as a proxy for artificial selection, we tested whether paedomorphic features give dogs a selective advantage in their current environment. Dogs who exhibited facial expressions that enhance their neonatal appearance were preferentially selected by humans. Thus, early domestication of wolves may have occurred not only as wolf populations became tamer, but also as they exploited human preferences for paedomorphic characteristics. These findings, therefore, add to our understanding of early dog domestication as a complex co-evolutionary process. PMID:24386109

  7. A bilingual advantage in visual language discrimination in infancy.

    PubMed

    Sebastián-Gallés, Núria; Albareda-Castellot, Bàrbara; Weikum, Whitney M; Werker, Janet F

    2012-09-01

    The origins of the bilingual advantage in various cognitive tasks are largely unknown. We tested the hypothesis that bilinguals' early capacities to track their native languages separately and learn about the properties of each may be at the origin of such differences. Spanish-Catalan bilingual and Spanish or Catalan monolingual infants watched silent video recordings of French-English bilingual speakers and were tested on their ability to discern when the language changed from French to English or vice versa. The infants' performance was compared with that of previously tested French-English bilingual and English monolingual infants. Although all groups of monolingual infants failed to detect the change between English and French, both groups of bilingual infants succeeded. These findings reveal that bilingual experience can modulate the attentional system even without explicit training or feedback. They provide a basis for explaining the ontogeny of the general cognitive advantages of bilinguals.

  8. The binocular advantage in visuomotor tasks involving tools.

    PubMed

    Read, Jenny C A; Begum, Shah Farzana; McDonald, Alice; Trowbridge, Jack

    2013-01-01

    We compared performance on three manual-dexterity tasks under monocular and binocular viewing. The tasks were the standard Morrisby Fine Dexterity Test, using forceps to manipulate the items, a modified version of the Morrisby test using fingers, and a "buzz-wire" task in which subjects had to guide a wire hoop around a 3D track without bringing the hoop into contact with the track. In all three tasks, performance was better for binocular viewing. The extent of the binocular advantage in individuals did not correlate significantly with their stereoacuity measured on the Randot test. However, the extent of the binocular advantage depended strongly on the task. It was weak when fingers were used on the Morrisby task, stronger with forceps, and extremely strong on the buzz-wire task (fivefold increase in error rate with monocular viewing). We suggest that the 3D buzz-wire game is particularly suitable for assessing binocularly based dexterity.

  9. Developing a competitive advantage in the market for radiology services.

    PubMed

    Kropf, R; Szafran, A J

    1988-01-01

    This article describes how managers of outpatient diagnostic radiology services can develop a competitive advantage by increasing the value of services to patients and referring physicians. A method is presented to identify changes to services that increase their value. The method requires the definition of the "value chains" of patients and referring physicians. Particular attention is paid to the use of information systems technology to suggest and implement service changes. A narrow range of health services was selected because the approach requires a detailed understanding of consumers and how they use services. The approach should, however, be examined carefully by managers seeking to develop a competitive advantage for a wide range of health services.

  10. [On the concept of health in traditional Chinese medicine and its characteristics and advantages].

    PubMed

    Wang, Jie; Tang, Yan-li

    2010-01-01

    There are abundant systematic concepts of health and the wisdom of life-cultivation in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), not only including the connotation of modern health, but also with many of its own characteristics. The health concept of TCM includes the holistic view of unison between man and universe, the harmonious unity of fusion of shape and soul, the people-oriented view of values and the balance of qi-blood-yin-yang in the human body. The characteristics and advantages of TCM for maintaining health consist of prevention, emotion regulation, to pay great attention to Upright Qi and obeying nature. To take full advantage of the health concept and regulation methods of TCM, to further study and spread it will promote and make great contributions to human health.

  11. The half-truth of first-mover advantage.

    PubMed

    Suarez, Fernando; Lanzolla, Gianvito

    2005-04-01

    Many executives take for granted that the first company in a new product category gets an unbeatable head start and reaps long-lasting benefits. But that doesn't always happen. The authors of this article discovered that much depends on the pace at which the category's technology is changing and the speed at which the market is evolving. By analyzing these two factors, companies can improve their odds of succeeding as first movers with the resources they possess. Gradual evolution in both the technology and the market provides a first mover with the best conditions for creating a dominant position that is long lasting (Hoover in the vacuum cleaner industry is a good example). In such calm waters, a company can defend its advantages even without exceptional skills or extensive financial resources. When the market is changing rapidly and the product isn't, a first entrant with extensive resources can obtain a long-lasting advantage (as Sony did with its Walkman personal stereo); a company with only limited resources probably must settle for a short-term benefit. When the market is static but the product is changing constantly, first-mover advantages of either kind--durable or short-lived--are unlikely. Only companies with very deep pockets can survive (think of Sony and the digital cameras it pioneered). Rapid churn in both the technology and the market creates the worst conditions. But if companies have an acute sense of when to exit-as Netscape demonstrated when it agreed to be acquired by AOL-a worthwhile short-term gain is possible. Before venturing into a newly forming market, you need to analyze the environment, assess your resources, then determine which type offirst-mover advantage is most achievable. Once you've gone into the water, you have no choice but to swim.

  12. The half-truth of first-mover advantage.

    PubMed

    Suarez, Fernando; Lanzolla, Gianvito

    2005-04-01

    Many executives take for granted that the first company in a new product category gets an unbeatable head start and reaps long-lasting benefits. But that doesn't always happen. The authors of this article discovered that much depends on the pace at which the category's technology is changing and the speed at which the market is evolving. By analyzing these two factors, companies can improve their odds of succeeding as first movers with the resources they possess. Gradual evolution in both the technology and the market provides a first mover with the best conditions for creating a dominant position that is long lasting (Hoover in the vacuum cleaner industry is a good example). In such calm waters, a company can defend its advantages even without exceptional skills or extensive financial resources. When the market is changing rapidly and the product isn't, a first entrant with extensive resources can obtain a long-lasting advantage (as Sony did with its Walkman personal stereo); a company with only limited resources probably must settle for a short-term benefit. When the market is static but the product is changing constantly, first-mover advantages of either kind--durable or short-lived--are unlikely. Only companies with very deep pockets can survive (think of Sony and the digital cameras it pioneered). Rapid churn in both the technology and the market creates the worst conditions. But if companies have an acute sense of when to exit-as Netscape demonstrated when it agreed to be acquired by AOL-a worthwhile short-term gain is possible. Before venturing into a newly forming market, you need to analyze the environment, assess your resources, then determine which type offirst-mover advantage is most achievable. Once you've gone into the water, you have no choice but to swim. PMID:15807045

  13. Advantages of an electrical control and energy management system

    PubMed

    Pal; Huff

    2000-01-01

    This paper discusses an electrical control and energy management system (ECEMS) that was installed at Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Limited (IPCL) Nagathone Gas Cracker complex located in Maharashtra, India. This distributed control system (DCS) provided computer assisted control in the areas of: Demand control; Automatic generation control, including MW and MVAR management; Power factor control; Automatic tap changer control; Load shedding; Automatic synchronization of generator and ties; Remote control of breakers. Previously, IPCL, like most other petrochemical companies in India, relied on operator control for power house functions. The process is always automated, but the power house equipment is usually manually controlled. Electrical control and energy management systems are not thought to be necessary. However, in this case the consultants for IPCL and the DCS supplier convinced IPCL that an ECEMS would save them enough money in operating costs to pay for the new control system. The control system discussed in this paper reduced operating costs by satisfying the process steam and power demands in the most cost-effective manner. In addition, the system took action to respond to electrical disturbances, such as loss of tie line and generator tripping, so that stable conditions were restored. PMID:10826290

  14. Utilization of Minor Actinides as a Fuel Component for Ultra-Long Life Bhr Configurations: Designs, Advantages and Limitations

    SciTech Connect

    Dr. Pavel V. Tsvetkov

    2009-05-20

    This project assessed the advantages and limitations of using minor actinides as a fuel component to achieve ultra-long life Very High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) configurations. Researchers considered and compared the capabilities of pebble-bed and prismatic core designs with advanced actinide fuels to achieve ultra-long operation without refueling. Since both core designs permit flexibility in component configuration, fuel utilization, and fuel management, it is possible to improve fissile properties of minor actinides by neutron spectrum shifting through configuration adjustments. The project studied advanced actinide fuels, which could reduce the long-term radio-toxicity and heat load of high-level waste sent to a geologic repository and enable recovery of the energy contained in spent fuel. The ultra-long core life autonomous approach may reduce the technical need for additional repositories and is capable to improve marketability of the Generation IV VHTR by allowing worldwide deployment, including remote regions and regions with limited industrial resources. Utilization of minor actinides in nuclear reactors facilitates developments of new fuel cycles towards sustainable nuclear energy scenarios.

  15. Is there a dynamic advantage for facial expressions?

    PubMed

    Fiorentini, Chiara; Viviani, Paolo

    2011-03-22

    Some evidence suggests that it is easier to identify facial expressions (FEs) shown as dynamic displays than as photographs (dynamic advantage hypothesis). Previously, this has been tested by using dynamic FEs simulated either by morphing a neutral face into an emotional one or by computer animations. For the first time, we tested the dynamic advantage hypothesis by using high-speed recordings of actors' FEs. In the dynamic condition, stimuli were graded blends of two recordings (duration: 4.18 s), each describing the unfolding of an expression from neutral to apex. In the static condition, stimuli (duration: 3 s) were blends of just the apex of the same recordings. Stimuli for both conditions were generated by linearly morphing one expression into the other. Performance was estimated by a forced-choice task asking participants to identify which prototype the morphed stimulus was more similar to. Identification accuracy was not different between conditions. Response times (RTs) measured from stimulus onset were shorter for static than for dynamic stimuli. Yet, most responses to dynamic stimuli were given before expressions reached their apex. Thus, with a threshold model, we tested whether discriminative information is integrated more effectively in dynamic than in static conditions. We did not find any systematic difference. In short, neither identification accuracy nor RTs supported the dynamic advantage hypothesis.

  16. Dow Corning photonics: the silicon advantage in automotive photonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clapp, Terry V.; Paquet, Rene; Norris, Ann; Pettersen, Babette

    2005-02-01

    The Automotive Market offers several opportunities for Dow Corning to leverage the power of silicon-based materials. Dow Corning Photonics Solutions has a number of developments that may be attractive for the emergent photonics needs in automobiles, building on 40 years of experience as a leading Automotive supplier with a strong foundation of expertise and an extensive product offering- from encapsulents and highly reliable resins, adhesives, insulating materials and other products, ensuring that the advantage of silicones are already well-embedded in Automotive systems, modules and components. The recent development of LED encapsulants of exceptional clarity and stability has extended the potential for Dow Corning"s strength in Photonics to be deployed "in-car". Demonstration of board-level and back-plane solutions utilising siloxane waveguide technology offers new opportunities for systems designers to integrate optical components at low cost on diverse substrates. Coupled with work on simple waveguide technology for sensors and data communications applications this suite of materials and technology offerings is very potent in this sector. The harsh environment under hood and the very extreme thermal range that materials must sustain in vehicles due to both their engine and the climate is an applications specification that defines the siloxane advantage. For these passive optics applications the siloxanes very high clarity at the data-communications wavelengths coupled with extraordinary stability offers significant design advantage. The future development of Head-Up-Displays for instrumentation and data display will offer yet more opportunities to the siloxanes in Automotive Photonics.

  17. Technology Survey Assistance Tool Focusing on Their Advantages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishiyama, Risa; Takeuchi, Hironori; Watanabe, Hideo; Nasukawa, Tetsuya

    It is important for R&D managers, consultants, and other people seeking broad knowledge in technology fields to survey technical literature such as research papers, white papers, and technology news articles. One of the important kinds of information for those people regards the effectiveness of new technologies in their own businesses. General search engines are good at selecting documents revealing the details of a specific technology or a technology field, but it is hard to obtain useful information about how a technology will apply to individual business cases from such search results. There is a need for a technology survey assistance tool that helps users find technologies with suitable capabilities. In this paper, two technical tasks were tackled to develop the prototype of this assistance tool: Extraction of advantage phrases and scoring for the advantage phrases to find novel applications in the target technology field. We describe a new method to identify advantage phrases in technical documents and our scoring function that gives higher scores to novel applications of the technology. The results of evaluations showed our phrase identification method with only a few phrasal patterns performs almost as well as human annotators, and the proposed scoring conforms better to the decisions made by professionals than random sort.

  18. The inhibitory advantage in bilingual children revisited: myth or reality?

    PubMed

    Duñabeitia, Jon Andoni; Hernández, Juan Andrés; Antón, Eneko; Macizo, Pedro; Estévez, Adelina; Fuentes, Luis J; Carreiras, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    In recent decades several authors have suggested that bilinguals exhibit enhanced cognitive control as compared to monolinguals and some proposals suggest that this main difference between monolinguals and bilinguals is related to bilinguals' enhanced capacity of inhibiting irrelevant information. This has led to the proposal of the so-called bilingual advantage in inhibitory skills. However, recent studies have cast some doubt on the locus and generality of the alleged bilingual advantage in inhibitory skills. In the current study we investigated inhibitory skills in a large sample of 252 monolingual and 252 bilingual children who were carefully matched on a large number of indices. We tested their performance in a verbal Stroop task and in a nonverbal version of the same task (the number size-congruency task). Results were unequivocal and showed that bilingual and monolingual participants performed equally in these two tasks across all the indices or markers of inhibitory skills explored. Furthermore, the lack of differences between monolingual and bilingual children extended to all the age ranges tested and was not modulated by any of the independent factors investigated. In light of these results, we conclude that bilingual children do not exhibit any specific advantage in simple inhibitory tasks as compared to monolinguals.

  19. Polysemy Advantage with Abstract But Not Concrete Words.

    PubMed

    Jager, Bernadet; Cleland, Alexandra A

    2016-02-01

    It is a robust finding that ambiguous words are recognized faster than unambiguous words. More recent studies (e.g., Rodd et al. in J Mem Lang 46:245-266, 2002) now indicate that this ambiguity advantage may in reality be a polysemy advantage: caused by related senses (polysemy) rather than unrelated meanings (homonymy). We report two lexical decision studies that investigated the effects of polysemy with new word sets. In both studies, polysemy was factorially manipulated while homonymy was controlled for. In Experiment 1, where the stimulus set consisted solely of concrete nouns, there was no effect of polysemy. However, in Experiment 2, where the stimulus set consisted of a mix of abstract nouns, verbs, and adjectives, there was a significant polysemy advantage. Together, these two studies strongly suggest that polysemy affects abstract but not concrete nouns. In addition, they rule out several alternative explanations for these polysemy effects, e.g., sense dominance, age-of-acquisition, familiarity, and semantic diversity.

  20. The advantage of coronal scanning in cerebral computed angiotomography for diagnosis of moyamoya disease

    SciTech Connect

    Asari, S.; Satoh, T.; Sakurai, M.; Yamamoto, Y.; Sadamoto, K.

    1982-12-01

    The advantage of coronal scanning in cerebral computed angiotomography for diagnosis of and screening for moyamoya disease is demonstrated. Characteristic features on the coronal CT scan include (a) attenuation of and difficulty in following the supraclinoid internal carotid arteries and carotid fork and (b) abnormal ''nebula-like'' high-density areas consisting of irregular, tortuous, or patchy vessels arising in the basal cisterns and extending to the basal ganglia.

  1. [Applications and advantages of a multimedia system for autopsies ].

    PubMed

    Gualco, M; Benzi, D; Fulcheri, E

    2001-10-01

    This work evaluates the benefits and applications of computers and multimedia systems in post-mortem examination practice and, more in particular, in the definition of data collection protocols. We examined issues concerning the different aims of autopsy (e.g. diagnostic, scientific, educational, legal), and found that the pathologist's main duty is to acquire a large amount of data in the best possible way. However, despite the will to carry out detailed post-mortem examinations, many pathologic anatomy services face objective difficulties in doing so, especially due to understaffing, lack of time and high costs. The Institute for Pathologic Anatomy of the University of Genoa has developed software for data handling and for outcome reporting, a particularly important aspect in fetal-perinatal diagnosis. The system consists of a relational database in a client-server environment (Fourth Dimension) with two integrated parts. The first part, with unrestricted access, contains patients' personal data, including gender, age, time and date of death, hospital department of origin, person and department requiring the post-mortem examination, hour and time of autopsy, pathologist's name, and clinical diagnosis of death. Using a scanner, a copy of the autopsy application is also field, together with the patient's medical file and any diagnostic images useful to document the case history. The second part of the information system is accessible by pathologists only, and contains the autopsy report. This part is organized to balance two different needs: it allows sufficient space and freedom for autopsy description while providing guidelines for presentation of the report. The structure of the conventional autopsy protocol has been maintained, with subdivisions for all the organs and apparatuses according to topographic criteria. Before this part, a section is dedicated to external cadaver examination and anthropometric data; weight, shape, volume and texture are described for

  2. Re-assessment of home advantage in Spanish handball: comment on Gutierrez, et al. (2012).

    PubMed

    Pollard, Richard; Gómez, Miguel A

    2012-12-01

    Because of problems with a previously published study, a re-analysis of data relating to home advantage in handball in Spain was made. The overall home advantage for 10,536 games played over 11 seasons (1997-98 to 2007-08) at the top two levels of play for both men and women was 60.4%. It was significantly higher for men (61.6%) than for women (59.2%). Contrary to a conclusion in the previous paper, it was also significantly higher for play at Level 2 (61.3%) than at Level 1 (59.4%), representing the top two divisions of play for each sex. A three-way factorial analysis of variance (ANOVA) indicated that there was no difference between seasons, nor an interaction between seasons and gender as claimed previously. For individual teams, there was a clear negative correlation between home advantage and ability, as quantified by the overall performance of each team each season. This reversed the previous conclusion of a positive correlation. Because the previous study incorrectly claimed no prior research had been done on home advantage either in handball or between sexes, a review of the literature relating to these topics is included.

  3. High-Cost Patients Had Substantial Rates Of Leaving Medicare Advantage And Joining Traditional Medicare.

    PubMed

    Rahman, Momotazur; Keohane, Laura; Trivedi, Amal N; Mor, Vincent

    2015-10-01

    Medicare Advantage payment regulations include risk-adjusted capitated reimbursement, which was implemented to discourage favorable risk selection and encourage the retention of members who incur high costs. However, the extent to which risk-adjusted capitation has succeeded is not clear, especially for members using high-cost services not previously considered in assessments of risk selection. We examined the rates at which participants who used three high-cost services switched between Medicare Advantage and traditional Medicare. We found that the switching rate from 2010 to 2011 away from Medicare Advantage and to traditional Medicare exceeded the switching rate in the opposite direction for participants who used long-term nursing home care (17 percent versus 3 percent), short-term nursing home care (9 percent versus 4 percent), and home health care (8 percent versus 3 percent). These results were magnified among people who were enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid. Our findings raise questions about the role of Medicare Advantage plans in serving high-cost patients with complex care needs, who account for a disproportionately high amount of total health care spending.

  4. High-Cost Patients Had Substantial Rates Of Leaving Medicare Advantage And Joining Traditional Medicare

    PubMed Central

    Rahman, Momotazur; Keohane, Laura; Trivedi, Amal N.; Mor, Vincent

    2015-01-01

    Medicare Advantage payment regulations include risk-adjusted capitated reimbursement, which was implemented to discourage favorable risk selection and encourage the retention of members who incur high costs. However, the extent to which risk-adjusted capitation has succeeded is not clear, especially for members using high-cost services not previously considered in assessments of risk selection. We examined the rates at which participants who used three high-cost services switched between Medicare Advantage and traditional Medicare. We found that the switching rate from 2010 to 2011 away from Medicare Advantage and to traditional Medicare exceeded the switching rate in the opposite direction for participants who used long-term nursing home care (17 percent versus 3 percent), short-term nursing home care (9 percent versus 4 percent), and home health care (8 percent versus 3 percent). These results were magnified among people who were enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid. Our findings raise questions about the role of Medicare Advantage plans in serving high-cost patients with complex care needs, who account for a disproportionately high amount of total health care spending. PMID:26438743

  5. Oxygen-reducing catalyst layer

    DOEpatents

    O'Brien, Dennis P.; Schmoeckel, Alison K.; Vernstrom, George D.; Atanasoski, Radoslav; Wood, Thomas E.; Yang, Ruizhi; Easton, E. Bradley; Dahn, Jeffrey R.; O'Neill, David G.

    2011-03-22

    An oxygen-reducing catalyst layer, and a method of making the oxygen-reducing catalyst layer, where the oxygen-reducing catalyst layer includes a catalytic material film disposed on a substrate with the use of physical vapor deposition and thermal treatment. The catalytic material film includes a transition metal that is substantially free of platinum. At least one of the physical vapor deposition and the thermal treatment is performed in a processing environment comprising a nitrogen-containing gas.

  6. How much better are females? The occurrence of female advantage, its proximal causes and its variation within and among gynodioecious species

    PubMed Central

    Dufay, Mathilde; Billard, Emmanuelle

    2012-01-01

    Background Gynodioecy is a reproductive system of interest for evolutionary biologists, as it poses the question of how females can be maintained while competing with hermaphrodites that possess both male and female functions. One necessary condition for the maintenance of this polymorphism is the occurrence of a female advantage, i.e. a better seed production or quality by females compared with hermaphrodites. Theoretically, its magnitude can be low when sterility mutations are cytoplasmic, while a 2-fold advantage is needed in the case of nuclear sterility. Such a difference is often thought to be due to reduced inbreeding depression in obligatory outcrossed females. Finally, variation in sex ratio and female advantage occur among populations of some gynodioecious species, though the prevalence of such variation is unknown. Scope By reviewing and analysing the data published on 48 gynodioecious species, we examined three important issues about female advantage. (1) Are reduced selfing and inbreeding depression likely to be the major cause of female advantage? (2) What is the magnitude of female advantage and does it fit theoretical predictions? (3) Does the occurrence or the magnitude of female advantage vary among populations within species and why? Conclusions It was found that a female advantage occurred in 40 species, with a magnitude comprised between 1 and 2 in the majority of cases. In many species, reduced selfing may not be a necessary cause of this advantage. Finally, female advantage varied among populations in some species, but both positive and negative correlations were found with female frequency. The role of reduced selfing in females for the evolution of gynodioecy, as well as the various processes that affect sex ratios and female advantage in populations are discussed. PMID:21459860

  7. Advantages of p++ polysilicon etch stop layer versus p++ silicon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charavel, Remy; Laconte, Jean; Raskin, Jean Pierre

    2003-04-01

    Boron highly doped silicon is now widely used as etch stop layer in MicroElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS) devices fabrication. The present paper shows the advantages of replacing the p++ Si etch stop layer by a p++ polysilicon layer. The etch rate of Tetramethylammoniunhydroxide (TMAH) is measured for LPCVD polysilicon and silicon doped with Boron at concentrations from 8.1018 up to 4.1020 atoms/cm3 which is the Boron solubility limit into Si. TMAH etch being often used during back-end process, selectivity to aluminium is usually needed. The etch selectivity of various TMAH solutions for p++ Si, p++ Poly and aluminium have been measured, from 25 % to 5 % TMAH pure and mixed with silicon powder and ammonium persulfate. Contrarily to silicon, polysilicon is etched isotropically in TMAH solution which constitutes a great advantage when cavities with vertical walls have to be opened. Although the polysilicon etch rate is higher than the silicon one, the selectivity (doped/undoped) is the same for the both materials, allowing identical uses. Another great advantage of polysilicon is that it can be deposited at any process step and does not require clever epitaxy steps or wafer bonding as for silicon. The surface roughness of the etched Poly region is considerably decreased with TMAH mixed with silicon powder and ammonium persulfate mixture compared to pure 25 % TMAH solution. The definition of buried masks in polysilicon layer through Boron implant is the main foreseen application. The p++ Poly buried mask brings solutions for the fabrication of self-aligned double gate MOS, microfluidic or optical networks in MEMS field.

  8. The Mechanisms Underlying the ASD Advantage in Visual Search.

    PubMed

    Kaldy, Zsuzsa; Giserman, Ivy; Carter, Alice S; Blaser, Erik

    2016-05-01

    A number of studies have demonstrated that individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are faster or more successful than typically developing control participants at various visual-attentional tasks (for reviews, see Dakin and Frith in Neuron 48:497-507, 2005; Simmons et al. in Vis Res 49:2705-2739, 2009). This "ASD advantage" was first identified in the domain of visual search by Plaisted et al. (J Child Psychol Psychiatry 39:777-783, 1998). Here we survey the findings of visual search studies from the past 15 years that contrasted the performance of individuals with and without ASD. Although there are some minor caveats, the overall consensus is that-across development and a broad range of symptom severity-individuals with ASD reliably outperform controls on visual search. The etiology of the ASD advantage has not been formally specified, but has been commonly attributed to 'enhanced perceptual discrimination', a superior ability to visually discriminate between targets and distractors in such tasks (e.g. O'Riordan in Cognition 77:81-96, 2000). As well, there is considerable evidence for impairments of the attentional network in ASD (for a review, see Keehn et al. in J Child Psychol Psychiatry 37:164-183, 2013). We discuss some recent results from our laboratory that support an attentional, rather than perceptual explanation for the ASD advantage in visual search. We speculate that this new conceptualization may offer a better understanding of some of the behavioral symptoms associated with ASD, such as over-focusing and restricted interests.

  9. Does living donation have advantages over deceased donation in liver transplantation?

    PubMed

    Kaido, Toshimi; Uemoto, Shinji

    2010-10-01

    Liver transplantation (LT) is the best treatment option for patients with end-stage liver disease. Living donor LT (LDLT) has developed as an alternative to deceased donor LT (DDLT) in order to overcome the critical shortage of deceased organ donations, particularly in Asia. LDLT offers several advantages over DDLT. The major advantage of LDLT is the reduction in waiting time mortality. Especially among patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), LDLT can shorten the waiting time and lower the dropout rate. The Hong Kong group reported that median waiting time was significantly shorter for LDLT than for DDLT. Intention-to-treat survival rates of HCC patients with voluntary live donors were significantly higher than those of patients without voluntary live donors. In contrast, a multicenter adult-to-adult LDLT retrospective cohort study reported that LDLT recipients displayed a significantly higher rate of HCC recurrence than DDLT recipients, although LDLT recipients had shorter waiting times than DDLT recipients. The advantage of LDLT involves the more liberal criteria for HCC compared with those for DDLT. Various preoperative interventions including nutritional treatment can also be planned for both the donor and recipient in LDLT. Conversely, LDLT has marked unfavorable characteristics in terms of donor risks. Donor morbidity is not infrequent and the donor mortality rate is estimated at around 0.1-0.3%. In conclusion, living donation is not necessarily advantageous over deceased donation in LT. Taking the advantages and disadvantages of each option into consideration, LDLT and DDLT should both be used to facilitate effective LT for patients requiring transplant. PMID:20880167

  10. Biocatalysis in ionic liquids - advantages beyond green technology.

    PubMed

    Park, Seongsoon; Kazlauskas, Romas J

    2003-08-01

    In recent years researchers have started to explore a particular class of organic solvents called room temperature ionic liquids - or simply ionic liquids - to identify their unique advantages for biocatalysis. Because they lack vapour pressure, ionic liquids hold potential as green solvents. Furthermore, unlike organic solvents of comparable polarity, they often do not inactivate enzymes, which simplifies reactions involving polar substrates such as sugars. Biocatalytic reactions in ionic liquids have also shown higher selectivity, faster rates and greater enzyme stability; however, these solvents present other challenges, among them difficulties in purifying ionic liquids and controlling water activity and pH, higher viscosity and problems with product isolation. PMID:12943854

  11. Biocatalysis in ionic liquids - advantages beyond green technology.

    PubMed

    Park, Seongsoon; Kazlauskas, Romas J

    2003-08-01

    In recent years researchers have started to explore a particular class of organic solvents called room temperature ionic liquids - or simply ionic liquids - to identify their unique advantages for biocatalysis. Because they lack vapour pressure, ionic liquids hold potential as green solvents. Furthermore, unlike organic solvents of comparable polarity, they often do not inactivate enzymes, which simplifies reactions involving polar substrates such as sugars. Biocatalytic reactions in ionic liquids have also shown higher selectivity, faster rates and greater enzyme stability; however, these solvents present other challenges, among them difficulties in purifying ionic liquids and controlling water activity and pH, higher viscosity and problems with product isolation.

  12. Generalized reduced MHD equations

    SciTech Connect

    Kruger, S.E.; Hegna, C.C.; Callen, J.D.

    1998-07-01

    A new derivation of reduced magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) equations is presented. A multiple-time-scale expansion is employed. It has the advantage of clearly separating the three time scales of the problem associated with (1) MHD equilibrium, (2) fluctuations whose wave vector is aligned perpendicular to the magnetic field, and (3) those aligned parallel to the magnetic field. The derivation is carried out without relying on a large aspect ratio assumption; therefore this model can be applied to any general toroidal configuration. By accounting for the MHD equilibrium and constraints to eliminate the fast perpendicular waves, equations are derived to evolve scalar potential quantities on a time scale associated with the parallel wave vector (shear-alfven wave time scale), which is the time scale of interest for MHD instability studies. Careful attention is given in the derivation to satisfy energy conservation and to have manifestly divergence-free magnetic fields to all orders in the expansion parameter. Additionally, neoclassical closures and equilibrium shear flow effects are easily accounted for in this model. Equations for the inner resistive layer are derived which reproduce the linear ideal and resistive stability criterion of Glasser, Greene, and Johnson.

  13. Generalized reduced magnetohydrodynamic equations

    SciTech Connect

    Kruger, S.E.

    1999-02-01

    A new derivation of reduced magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) equations is presented. A multiple-time-scale expansion is employed. It has the advantage of clearly separating the three time scales of the problem associated with (1) MHD equilibrium, (2) fluctuations whose wave vector is aligned perpendicular to the magnetic field, and (3) those aligned parallel to the magnetic field. The derivation is carried out without relying on a large aspect ratio assumption; therefore this model can be applied to any general configuration. By accounting for the MHD equilibrium and constraints to eliminate the fast perpendicular waves, equations are derived to evolve scalar potential quantities on a time scale associated with the parallel wave vector (shear-Alfven wave time scale), which is the time scale of interest for MHD instability studies. Careful attention is given in the derivation to satisfy energy conservation and to have manifestly divergence-free magnetic fields to all orders in the expansion parameter. Additionally, neoclassical closures and equilibrium shear flow effects are easily accounted for in this model. Equations for the inner resistive layer are derived which reproduce the linear ideal and resistive stability criterion of Glasser, Greene, and Johnson. The equations have been programmed into a spectral initial value code and run with shear flow that is consistent with the equilibrium input into the code. Linear results of tearing modes with shear flow are presented which differentiate the effects of shear flow gradients in the layer with the effects of the shear flow decoupling multiple harmonics.

  14. Football supporters' perceptions of their role in the home advantage.

    PubMed

    Wolfson, Sandy; Wakelin, Delia; Lewis, Matthew

    2005-04-01

    Football fans' views on their role in the home advantage were obtained by placing links to an internet questionnaire on supporters' websites. Altogether, 461 fans from clubs which had been promoted, relegated or unchanged in the past season of the English football leagues rated crowd support as significantly more influential than familiarity, travel, territoriality and referee bias in contributing to the home advantage. Fans felt responsible for inspiring their team to victory, took credit for distracting opponents, and believed that they could influence officials into making decisions in their team's favour. However, they did not accept personal blame for poor results. No effects for gender, age or the team's outcome in the promotion/relegation battle emerged, though season ticket holders were more extreme in their feelings of responsibility overall. Furthermore, it was suggested that mechanisms such as the perception of being superior to rivals can encourage fans to retain their allegiance to their teams, even when outcomes are disappointing. Indeed, affiliation may become so incorporated into self-identity that supporters may not have the option of abandoning their team, but instead perceive a reciprocal relationship in which both they and the team are expected to do their best to achieve success.

  15. Green synthesis of nanoparticles: Their advantages and disadvantages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parveen, Khadeeja; Banse, Viktoria; Ledwani, Lalita

    2016-04-01

    The nanotechnology and biomedical sciences opens the possibility for a wide variety of biological research topics and medical uses at the molecular and cellular level. The biosynthesis of nanoparticles has been proposed as a cost-effective and environmentally friendly alternative to chemical and physical methods. Plant-mediated synthesis of nanoparticles is a green chemistry approach that connects nanotechnology with plants. Novel methods of ideally synthesizing NPs are thus thought that are formed at ambient temperatures, neutral pH, low costs and environmentally friendly fashion. Keeping these goals in view nanomaterials have been synthesized using various routes. Among the biological alternatives, plants and plant extracts seem to be the best option. Plants are nature's "chemical factories". They are cost efficient and require low maintenance. The advantages and disadvantages of nanotechnology can be easily enumerated. This study attempts to review the diversity of the field, starting with the history of nanotechnology, the properties of the nanoparticle, various strategies of synthesis, the many advantages and disadvantages of different methods and its application.

  16. Neural Correlates of Advantageous and Disadvantageous Inequity in Sharing Decisions

    PubMed Central

    Crone, Eveline A.

    2014-01-01

    Humans have a strong preference for fair distributions of resources. Neuroimaging studies have shown that being treated unfairly coincides with activation in brain regions involved in signaling conflict and negative affect. Less is known about neural responses involved in violating a fairness norm ourselves. Here, we investigated the neural patterns associated with inequity, where participants were asked to choose between an equal split of money and an unequal split that could either maximize their own (advantageous inequity) or another person’s (disadvantageous inequity) earnings. Choosing to divide money unequally, irrespective who benefited from the unequal distribution, was associated with activity in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, anterior insula and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Inequity choices that maximized another person’s profits were further associated with activity in the ventral striatum and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Taken together, our findings show evidence of a common neural pattern associated with both advantageous and disadvantageous inequity in sharing decisions and additional recruitment of neural circuitry previously linked to the computation of subjective value and reward when violating a fairness norm at the benefit of someone else. PMID:25238541

  17. Neural correlates of advantageous and disadvantageous inequity in sharing decisions.

    PubMed

    Güroğlu, Berna; Will, Geert-Jan; Crone, Eveline A

    2014-01-01

    Humans have a strong preference for fair distributions of resources. Neuroimaging studies have shown that being treated unfairly coincides with activation in brain regions involved in signaling conflict and negative affect. Less is known about neural responses involved in violating a fairness norm ourselves. Here, we investigated the neural patterns associated with inequity, where participants were asked to choose between an equal split of money and an unequal split that could either maximize their own (advantageous inequity) or another person's (disadvantageous inequity) earnings. Choosing to divide money unequally, irrespective who benefited from the unequal distribution, was associated with activity in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, anterior insula and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Inequity choices that maximized another person's profits were further associated with activity in the ventral striatum and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Taken together, our findings show evidence of a common neural pattern associated with both advantageous and disadvantageous inequity in sharing decisions and additional recruitment of neural circuitry previously linked to the computation of subjective value and reward when violating a fairness norm at the benefit of someone else. PMID:25238541

  18. Heterozygote advantage as a natural consequence of adaptation in diploids

    PubMed Central

    Sellis, Diamantis; Callahan, Benjamin J.; Petrov, Dmitri A.; Messer, Philipp W.

    2011-01-01

    Molecular adaptation is typically assumed to proceed by sequential fixation of beneficial mutations. In diploids, this picture presupposes that for most adaptive mutations, the homozygotes have a higher fitness than the heterozygotes. Here, we show that contrary to this expectation, a substantial proportion of adaptive mutations should display heterozygote advantage. This feature of adaptation in diploids emerges naturally from the primary importance of the fitness of heterozygotes for the invasion of new adaptive mutations. We formalize this result in the framework of Fisher's influential geometric model of adaptation. We find that in diploids, adaptation should often proceed through a succession of short-lived balanced states that maintain substantially higher levels of phenotypic and fitness variation in the population compared with classic adaptive walks. In fast-changing environments, this variation produces a diversity advantage that allows diploids to remain better adapted compared with haploids despite the disadvantage associated with the presence of unfit homozygotes. The short-lived balanced states arising during adaptive walks should be mostly invisible to current scans for long-term balancing selection. Instead, they should leave signatures of incomplete selective sweeps, which do appear to be common in many species. Our results also raise the possibility that balancing selection, as a natural consequence of frequent adaptation, might play a more prominent role among the forces maintaining genetic variation than is commonly recognized. PMID:22143780

  19. Complexity, Competitive Intelligence and the "First Mover" Advantage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fellman, Philip Vos; Post, Jonathan Vos

    In the following paper we explore some of the ways in which competitive intelligence and game theory can be employed to assist firms in deciding whether or not to undertake international market diversification and whether or not there is an advantage to being a market leader or a market follower overseas. In attempting to answer these questions, we take a somewhat unconventional approach. We first examine how some of the most recent advances in the physical and biological sciences can contribute to the ways in which we understand how firms behave. Subsequently, we propose a formal methodology for competitive intelligence. While space considerations here do not allow for a complete game-theoretic treatment of competitive intelligence and its use with respect to understanding first and second mover advantage in firm internationalization, that treatment can be found in its entirety in the on-line proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Complex Systems at http://knowledgetoday.org/wiki/indec.php/ICCS06/89

  20. Practical advantages of mud cooling systems for drilling

    SciTech Connect

    Maury, V.; Guenot, A.

    1995-03-01

    Field case studies of borehole stability have shown that some failures, previously unexplained, were due to thermal effects, such as heating the upper part of open hole sections by mud circulation when drilling deeper or reheating of the bottomhole when mud circulation is stopped. A complete analysis of the thermal regime in boreholes was performed and as a consequence, cooling of mud appeared as a means to mitigate these effects. A series of tests were then carried out to check the practicality of installing such mud cooling systems. Many other advantages then appeared: decrease of the temperature of the borehole allowing better operation of the logging tools, better control of the mud rheology with less additives, extended use of MWD/LWD devices. But the most significant advantage is for the oil based muds which can be maintained at surface below their flash point, improving the safety of operations. This paper recalls and summarizes the results of observations, measurements and studies performed to determine the feasibility of such systems. Operational results are given for several field cases with emphasis on safety. The use of these very simple devices, which have been field proven on normal and high temperature (BHCT = 150 C), is now contemplated for future HP-HT wells.

  1. Paediatric radiology seen from Africa. Part II: recognising research advantages in a developing country.

    PubMed

    Andronikou, Savvas; Mngomezulu, Victor

    2011-07-01

    Radiologists in developing countries cite numerous reasons for poor research output including heavier workloads, poor remuneration (resulting in "brain drain"), poor infrastructure, language barriers, lack of modern imaging equipment, and a disease spectrum that may be of little interest to journals and readers in the developed world. On the other hand, large populations of patients suffering from distinctive diseases, cost-effective healthcare systems, and a set-up with highly centralised tertiary referral hospitals, may be seen as advantages to those willing to tap into this as a data source for research. The lack of resources may even stimulate cost-effective innovations relevant to the needs of poor communities. This paper challenges preconceived ideas and identifies advantages for radiologists in developing countries to producing good research and publications. It also cautions against "annexation of sites" by stakeholders from developed countries, and suggests simple solutions to maximise research output without a significant financial cost.

  2. Achieving strategic cost advantages by focusing on back-office efficiency.

    PubMed

    McDowell, Jim

    2010-06-01

    A study of more than 270 hospitals over a four-year period highlighted a number of investments that can reduce hospitals' costs and improve efficiency, including the following: E-procurement systems. Electronic exchange of invoices and payments (and electronic receipt of payments). Human resources IT systems that reduce the need for manual entry of data. Shared services deployment.

  3. Metabolic engineering of microbial competitive advantage for industrial fermentation processes.

    PubMed

    Shaw, A Joe; Lam, Felix H; Hamilton, Maureen; Consiglio, Andrew; MacEwen, Kyle; Brevnova, Elena E; Greenhagen, Emily; LaTouf, W Greg; South, Colin R; van Dijken, Hans; Stephanopoulos, Gregory

    2016-08-01

    Microbial contamination is an obstacle to widespread production of advanced biofuels and chemicals. Current practices such as process sterilization or antibiotic dosage carry excess costs or encourage the development of antibiotic resistance. We engineered Escherichia coli to assimilate melamine, a xenobiotic compound containing nitrogen. After adaptive laboratory evolution to improve pathway efficiency, the engineered strain rapidly outcompeted a control strain when melamine was supplied as the nitrogen source. We additionally engineered the yeasts Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Yarrowia lipolytica to assimilate nitrogen from cyanamide and phosphorus from potassium phosphite, and they outcompeted contaminating strains in several low-cost feedstocks. Supplying essential growth nutrients through xenobiotic or ecologically rare chemicals provides microbial competitive advantage with minimal external risks, given that engineered biocatalysts only have improved fitness within the customized fermentation environment.

  4. Mechanisms underlying the sperm quality advantage in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Pattarini, James M; Starmer, William T; Bjork, Adam; Pitnick, Scott

    2006-10-01

    Contrary to early predictions of sperm competition theory, postcopulatory sexual selection favoring increased investment per sperm (e.g., sperm size, sperm quality) has been demonstrated in numerous organisms. We empirically demonstrate for Drosophila melanogaster that both sperm quality and sperm quantity independently contribute to competitive male fertilization success. In addition to these independent effects, there was a significant interaction between sperm quality and quantity that suggests an internal positive reinforcement on selection for sperm quality, with selection predicted to intensify as investment per sperm increases and the number of sperm competing declines. The mechanism underlying the sperm quality advantage is elucidated through examination of the relationship between female sperm-storage organ morphology and the differential organization of different length sperm within the organ. Our results exemplify that primary sex cells can bear secondary sexual straits.

  5. Metabolic engineering of microbial competitive advantage for industrial fermentation processes.

    PubMed

    Shaw, A Joe; Lam, Felix H; Hamilton, Maureen; Consiglio, Andrew; MacEwen, Kyle; Brevnova, Elena E; Greenhagen, Emily; LaTouf, W Greg; South, Colin R; van Dijken, Hans; Stephanopoulos, Gregory

    2016-08-01

    Microbial contamination is an obstacle to widespread production of advanced biofuels and chemicals. Current practices such as process sterilization or antibiotic dosage carry excess costs or encourage the development of antibiotic resistance. We engineered Escherichia coli to assimilate melamine, a xenobiotic compound containing nitrogen. After adaptive laboratory evolution to improve pathway efficiency, the engineered strain rapidly outcompeted a control strain when melamine was supplied as the nitrogen source. We additionally engineered the yeasts Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Yarrowia lipolytica to assimilate nitrogen from cyanamide and phosphorus from potassium phosphite, and they outcompeted contaminating strains in several low-cost feedstocks. Supplying essential growth nutrients through xenobiotic or ecologically rare chemicals provides microbial competitive advantage with minimal external risks, given that engineered biocatalysts only have improved fitness within the customized fermentation environment. PMID:27493184

  6. Solar thermal upper stage: Economic advantage and development status

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adams, Alan M.

    1995-01-01

    A solar thermal upper stage (STUS) is envisioned as a propulsive concept for the future. The STUS will be used for low Earth orbit (LEO) to geostationary-Earth orbit (GEO) transfer and for planetary exploration missions. The STUS offers significant performance gains over conventional chemical propulsion systems. These performance gains translate into a more economical, more efficient method of placing useful payloads in space and maximizing the benefits derived from space activity. This paper will discuss the economical advantages of an STUS compared to conventional chemical propulsion systems, the potential market for an STUS, and the recent activity in the development of an STUS. The results of this assessment combined with the performance gains, will provide a strong justification for the development of an STUS.

  7. Organic proxies in speleothems - New developments, advantages and limitations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blyth, Alison J.; Hartland, Adam; Baker, Andy

    2016-10-01

    Research into organic matter in speleothems has progressed recently to encompass new analytical approaches and applications, which offer increased potential in areas such as palaeo-temperature reconstruction and high-resolution palaeo-environmental records from the Quaternary. Here we review three major areas of relevance for future work in the field - the origin, transport and transformation of the organic matter which is ultimately preserved in speleothems; the types of proxies currently available for use or in development, and their advantages and issues; and the recently developed prospect of high-resolution organic matter records derived from the analysis of organic/trace elements complexes. The continuing extension of work in these research areas offers excellent potential for organic speleothem proxies to grow as a valuable tool in palaeoenvironmental research.

  8. Some advantages of methane in an aircraft gas turbine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Graham, R. W.; Glassman, A. J.

    1980-01-01

    Because liquid methane may be obtained from existing natural gas sources or produced synthetically from a range of other hydrocarbon sources (coal, biomass, shale, organic waste), it is considered as an aviation fuel in a simplified cycle analysis of the performance of a turboprop engine intended for operation at Mach 0.8 and 10,688 m altitude. Performance comparisons are given for four cases in which the turbine cooling air is either not cooled or cooled to -111, -222, and -333 K, and the advantages and problems that may be expected from direct use of the cryogenic fuel in turbine cooling are discussed. It is shown that while (1) methane combustion characteristics are appreciably different from those of Jet A fuel and will require the development of different combustor designs, and (2) the safe integration of methane cryotanks into transport aircraft structures poses a major design problem, a highly fuel-efficient turboprop engine fueled by methane appears to be feasible.

  9. Improving the design of competitive bidding in Medicare Advantage.

    PubMed

    Cawley, John H; Whitford, Andrew B

    2007-04-01

    In 2003, Congress passed the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act, which required that in 2006 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) implement a system of competitive bids to set payments for the Medicare Advantage program. Managed care plans now bid for the right to enroll Medicare beneficiaries. Data from the first year of bidding suggest that imperfect competition is limiting the success of the bidding system. This article offers suggestions to improve this system based on findings from auction theory and previous government-run auctions. In particular, CMS can benefit by adjusting its system of competitive bids in four ways: credibly committing to regulations governing bidding; limiting the scope for collusion, entry deterrence, and predatory behavior among bidders; adjusting how benchmark reimbursement rates are set; and accounting for asymmetric information among bidders.

  10. Some advantages of methane in an aircraft gas turbine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Graham, R. W.; Glassman, A. J.

    1980-01-01

    Liquid methane, which can be manufactured from any of the hydrocarbon sources such as coal, shale biomass, and organic waste considered as a petroleum replacement for aircraft fuels. A simple cycle analysis is carried out for a turboprop engine flying a Mach 0.8 and 10, 688 meters (35,000 ft.) altitude. Cycle performance comparisions are rendered for four cases in which the turbine cooling air is cooled or not cooled by the methane fuel. The advantages and disadvantages of involving the fuel in the turbine cooling system are discussed. Methane combustion characteristics are appreciably different from Jet A and will require different combustor designs. Although a number of similar difficult technical problems exist, a highly fuel efficient turboprop engine burning methane appear to be feasible.

  11. Improving the design of competitive bidding in Medicare Advantage.

    PubMed

    Cawley, John H; Whitford, Andrew B

    2007-04-01

    In 2003, Congress passed the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act, which required that in 2006 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) implement a system of competitive bids to set payments for the Medicare Advantage program. Managed care plans now bid for the right to enroll Medicare beneficiaries. Data from the first year of bidding suggest that imperfect competition is limiting the success of the bidding system. This article offers suggestions to improve this system based on findings from auction theory and previous government-run auctions. In particular, CMS can benefit by adjusting its system of competitive bids in four ways: credibly committing to regulations governing bidding; limiting the scope for collusion, entry deterrence, and predatory behavior among bidders; adjusting how benchmark reimbursement rates are set; and accounting for asymmetric information among bidders. PMID:17463410

  12. Does Medicare Advantage Cost Less Than Traditional Medicare?

    PubMed

    Biles, Brian; Casillas, Giselle; Guterman, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    The costs of providing benefits to enrollees in private Medicare Advantage (MA) plans are slightly less, on average, than what traditional Medicare spends per beneficiary in the same county. However, MA plans that are able to keep their costs comparatively low are concen­trated in a fairly small number of U.S. counties. In the 25 counties where the cost differences between MA plans and traditional Medicare are largest, MA plans spent a total of $5.2 billion less than what traditional Medicare would have been expected to spend on the same benefi­ciaries, with health maintenance organizations (HMOs) accounting for all of that difference. In the rest of the country, MA plans spent $4.8 billion above the expected costs under tradi­tional Medicare. Broad determinations about the relative efficiency of MA plans and traditional Medicare can therefore be misleading, as they fail to take into account local conditions and individual plans' performance.

  13. Total hip arthroplasty: areview of advances, advantages and limitations

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xin-Wei; Zi, Ying; Xiang, Liang-Bi; Wang, Yu

    2015-01-01

    The therapeutic outcomes of Osteoarthritis (OA) has been unsatisfactory and often surgeries such as total hip arthroplasty (THA) is required. THA is an effective treatment for patients with end-stage arthritic hip conditions. Cemented THA has been the treatment of choice for elderly patients with OA. An improvement in Timed “Up and Go” (TUG) before surgery might contribute to a decrease in the occurrence of DVT after THA, though post-thrombotic syndrome (PTS), a chronic condition in the lower extremity does not appear to be a major complication after DVT in patients undergoing THA. For OA, four domains to be evaluated: pain, physical function, joint imaging, and patient global assessment. Thus, THA can be cost saving or, at least cost- effective in improving quality-adjusted life expectancy. The purpose of this review is to discuss the recent advances as well as advantages and limitations of THA. PMID:25784971

  14. A new silicon retina model and its advantages.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Kuntal; Sarkar, Sandip; Bhaumik, Kamales

    2005-01-01

    A new model of silicon retina based on the receptive field structure of retinal ganglion cells has been proposed. Unlike previous neuromorphic models, the proposed model directly incorporates into the receptive field model, contribution from both the inner and outer plexiform layer of the retina, as a linear combination of the two. It has been shown that such a system is capable of aiding in the computation of zero-crossing maps, in higher regions of the brain, using a fourth or higher order derivative. This model is likely to have a neuromorphic implication in generating and implementing a simplistic derivative analyzer mimetic of the Human Visual system (HVS) and is also endowed with additional advantages from the perspective of image retrieval.

  15. Advantages of nonclassical pointer states in postselected weak measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turek, Yusuf; Maimaiti, W.; Shikano, Yutaka; Sun, Chang-Pu; Al-Amri, M.

    2015-08-01

    We investigate, within the weak measurement theory, the advantages of nonclassical pointer states over semiclassical ones for coherent, squeezed vacuum, and Schrödinger cat states. These states are utilized as pointer states for the system operator A ̂ with property Â2=I ̂ , where I ̂ represents the identity operator. We calculate the ratio between the signal-to-noise ratio of nonpostselected and postselected weak measurements. The latter is used to find the quantum Fisher information for the above pointer states. The average shifts for those pointer states with arbitrary interaction strength are investigated in detail. One key result is that we find the postselected weak measurement scheme for nonclassical pointer states to be superior to semiclassical ones. This can improve the precision of the measurement process.

  16. Crop rotations that include legumes and reduced tillage improve the energy efficiency of crop production systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Modern crop production requires large inputs of energy and these inputs represent a substantial cost. Management practices such as crop rotation and choice of tillage practice influence the energy balance for a production system. Legumes support bacteria that are capable of fixing nitrogen (N). This...

  17. Crop rotations that include legumes and reduced tillage improve the energy efficiency of crop production systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Text: Modern crop production requires large inputs of energy and these inputs represent a substantial cost. Management practices such as crop rotation and choice of tillage practice influence the energy balance for a production system. Legumes support bacteria that are capable of fixing nitrogen (N)...

  18. Virtual online consultations: advantages and limitations (VOCAL) study

    PubMed Central

    Greenhalgh, Trisha; Vijayaraghavan, Shanti; Wherton, Joe; Shaw, Sara; Byrne, Emma; Campbell-Richards, Desirée; Bhattacharya, Satya; Hanson, Philippa; Ramoutar, Seendy; Gutteridge, Charles; Hodkinson, Isabel; Collard, Anna; Morris, Joanne

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Remote video consultations between clinician and patient are technically possible and increasingly acceptable. They are being introduced in some settings alongside (and occasionally replacing) face-to-face or telephone consultations. Methods To explore the advantages and limitations of video consultations, we will conduct in-depth qualitative studies of real consultations (microlevel) embedded in an organisational case study (mesolevel), taking account of national context (macrolevel). The study is based in 2 contrasting clinical settings (diabetes and cancer) in a National Health Service (NHS) acute trust in London, UK. Main data sources are: microlevel—audio, video and screen capture to produce rich multimodal data on 45 remote consultations; mesolevel—interviews, ethnographic observations and analysis of documents within the trust; macrolevel—key informant interviews of national-level stakeholders and document analysis. Data will be analysed and synthesised using a sociotechnical framework developed from structuration theory. Ethics approval City Road and Hampstead NHS Research Ethics Committee, 9 December 2014, reference 14/LO/1883. Planned outputs We plan outputs for 5 main audiences: (1) academics: research publications and conference presentations; (2) service providers: standard operating procedures, provisional operational guidance and key safety issues; (3) professional bodies and defence societies: summary of relevant findings to inform guidance to members; (4) policymakers: summary of key findings; (5) patients and carers: ‘what to expect in your virtual consultation’. Discussion The research literature on video consultations is sparse. Such consultations offer potential advantages to patients (who are spared the cost and inconvenience of travel) and the healthcare system (eg, they may be more cost-effective), but fears have been expressed that they may be clinically risky and/or less acceptable to patients or staff, and they

  19. Copper-phosphorus alloys offer advantages in brazing copper

    SciTech Connect

    Rupert, W.D.

    1996-05-01

    Copper-phosphorus brazing alloys are used extensively for joining copper, especially refrigeration and air-conditioning copper tubing and electrical conductors. What is the effect of phosphorus when alloyed with copper? The following are some of the major effects: (1) It lowers the melt temperature of copper (a temperature depressant). (2) It increases the fluidity of the copper when in the liquid state. (3) It acts as a deoxidant or a fluxing agent with copper. (4) It lowers the ductility of copper (embrittles). There is a misconception that silver improves the ductility of the copper-phosphorus alloys. In reality, silver added to copper acts in a similar manner as phosphorus. The addition of silver to copper lowers the melt temperature (temperature depressant) and decreases the ductility. Fortunately, the rate and amount at which silver lowers copper ductility is significantly less than that of phosphorus. Therefore, taking advantage of the temperature depressant property of silver, a Ag-Cu-P alloy can be selected at approximately the same melt temperature as a Cu-P alloy, but at a lower phosphorus content. The lowering of the phosphorus content actually makes the alloy more ductile, not the silver addition. A major advantage of the copper-phosphorus alloys is the self-fluxing characteristic when joining copper to copper. They may also be used with the addition of a paste flux on brass, bronze, and specialized applications on silver, tungsten and molybdenum. Whether it is selection of the proper BCuP alloy or troubleshooting an existing problem, the suggested approach is a review of the desired phosphorus content in the liquid metal and how it is being altered during application. In torch brazing, a slight change in the oxygen-fuel ratio can affect the joint quality or leak tightness.

  20. Comparison of presumptive blood test kits including hexagon OBTI.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Emma; Ames, Carole E; Dagnall, Kathryn E; Foster, John; Daniel, Barbara E

    2008-05-01

    Four presumptive blood tests, Hexagon OBTI, Hemastix(R), Leucomalachite green (LMG), and Kastle-Meyer (KM) were compared for their sensitivity in the identification of dried bloodstains. Stains of varying blood dilutions were subjected to each presumptive test and the results compared. The Hexagon OBTI buffer volume was also reduced to ascertain whether this increased the sensitivity of the kit. The study found that Hemastix(R) was the most sensitive test for trace blood detection. Only with the reduced buffer volume was the Hexagon OBTI kit as sensitive as the LMG and KM tests. However, the Hexagon OBTI kit has the advantage of being a primate specific blood detection kit. This study also investigated whether the OBTI buffer within the kit could be utilized for DNA profiling after presumptive testing. The results show that DNA profiles can be obtained from the Hexagon OBTI kit buffer directly.

  1. Neural Blockade Anaesthesia of the Mandibular Nerve and Its Terminal Branches: Rationale for Different Anaesthetic Techniques Including Their Advantages and Disadvantages

    PubMed Central

    Khoury, Jason; Townsend, Grant

    2011-01-01

    Anaesthesia of structures innervated by the mandibular nerve is necessary to provide adequate pain control when performing dental and localised surgical procedures. To date, numerous techniques have been described and, although many of these methods are not used routinely, there are some situations where their application may be indicated. Patient factors as well as anatomical variability of the mandibular nerve and associated structures dictate that no one technique can be universally applied with a 100% success rate. This fact has led to a proliferation of alternative techniques that have appeared in the literature. This selective review of the literature provides a brief description of the different techniques available to the clinician as well as the underlying anatomy which is fundamental to successfully anaesthetising the mandibular nerve. PMID:21716730

  2. Cumulative (Dis)Advantage and the Matthew Effect in Life-Course Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Bask, Miia; Bask, Mikael

    2015-01-01

    To foster a deeper understanding of the mechanisms behind inequality in society, it is crucial to work with well-defined concepts associated with such mechanisms. The aim of this paper is to define cumulative (dis)advantage and the Matthew effect. We argue that cumulative (dis)advantage is an intra-individual micro-level phenomenon, that the Matthew effect is an inter-individual macro-level phenomenon and that an appropriate measure of the Matthew effect focuses on the mechanism or dynamic process that generates inequality. The Matthew mechanism is, therefore, a better name for the phenomenon, where we provide a novel measure of the mechanism, including a proof-of-principle analysis using disposable personal income data. Finally, because socio-economic theory should be able to explain cumulative (dis)advantage and the Matthew mechanism when they are detected in data, we discuss the types of models that may explain the phenomena. We argue that interactions-based models in the literature traditions of analytical sociology and statistical mechanics serve this purpose. PMID:26606386

  3. Processing Chinese Relative Clauses: Evidence for the Subject-Relative Advantage

    PubMed Central

    Vasishth, Shravan; Chen, Zhong; Li, Qiang; Guo, Gueilan

    2013-01-01

    A general fact about language is that subject relative clauses are easier to process than object relative clauses. Recently, several self-paced reading studies have presented surprising evidence that object relatives in Chinese are easier to process than subject relatives. We carried out three self-paced reading experiments that attempted to replicate these results. Two of our three studies found a subject-relative preference, and the third study found an object-relative advantage. Using a random effects bayesian meta-analysis of fifteen studies (including our own), we show that the overall current evidence for the subject-relative advantage is quite strong (approximate posterior probability of a subject-relative advantage given the data: 78–80%). We argue that retrieval/integration based accounts would have difficulty explaining all three experimental results. These findings are important because they narrow the theoretical space by limiting the role of an important class of explanation—retrieval/integration cost—at least for relative clause processing in Chinese. PMID:24098575

  4. Selective advantage of trisomic human cells cultured in non-standard conditions

    PubMed Central

    Rutledge, Samuel D.; Douglas, Temple A.; Nicholson, Joshua M.; Vila-Casadesús, Maria; Kantzler, Courtney L.; Wangsa, Darawalee; Barroso-Vilares, Monika; Kale, Shiv D.; Logarinho, Elsa; Cimini, Daniela

    2016-01-01

    An abnormal chromosome number, a condition known as aneuploidy, is a ubiquitous feature of cancer cells. A number of studies have shown that aneuploidy impairs cellular fitness. However, there is also evidence that aneuploidy can arise in response to specific challenges and can confer a selective advantage under certain environmental stresses. Cancer cells are likely exposed to a number of challenging conditions arising within the tumor microenvironment. To investigate whether aneuploidy may confer a selective advantage to cancer cells, we employed a controlled experimental system. We used the diploid, colorectal cancer cell line DLD1 and two DLD1-derived cell lines carrying single-chromosome aneuploidies to assess a number of cancer cell properties. Such properties, which included rates of proliferation and apoptosis, anchorage-independent growth, and invasiveness, were assessed both under standard culture conditions and under conditions of stress (i.e., serum starvation, drug treatment, hypoxia). Similar experiments were performed in diploid vs. aneuploid non-transformed human primary cells. Overall, our data show that aneuploidy can confer selective advantage to human cells cultured under non-standard conditions. These findings indicate that aneuploidy can increase the adaptability of cells, even those, such as cancer cells, that are already characterized by increased proliferative capacity and aggressive tumorigenic phenotypes. PMID:26956415

  5. An experimental investigation of the functional hypothesis and evolutionary advantage of stone-tipped spears.

    PubMed

    Wilkins, Jayne; Schoville, Benjamin J; Brown, Kyle S

    2014-01-01

    Stone-tipped weapons were a significant innovation for Middle Pleistocene hominins. Hafted hunting technology represents the development of new cognitive and social learning mechanisms within the genus Homo, and may have provided a foraging advantage over simpler forms of hunting technology, such as a sharpened wooden spear. However, the nature of this foraging advantage has not been confirmed. Experimental studies and ethnographic reports provide conflicting results regarding the relative importance of the functional, economic, and social roles of hafted hunting technology. The controlled experiment reported here was designed to test the functional hypothesis for stone-tipped weapons using spears and ballistics gelatin. It differs from previous investigations of this type because it includes a quantitative analysis of wound track profiles and focuses specifically on hand-delivered spear technology. Our results do not support the hypothesis that tipped spears penetrate deeper than untipped spears. However, tipped spears create a significantly larger inner wound cavity that widens distally. This inner wound cavity is analogous to the permanent wound cavity in ballistics research, which is considered the key variable affecting the relative 'stopping power' or 'killing power' of a penetrating weapon. Tipped spears conferred a functional advantage to Middle Pleistocene hominins, potentially affecting the frequency and regularity of hunting success with important implications for human adaptation and life history.

  6. An Experimental Investigation of the Functional Hypothesis and Evolutionary Advantage of Stone-Tipped Spears

    PubMed Central

    Wilkins, Jayne; Schoville, Benjamin J.; Brown, Kyle S.

    2014-01-01

    Stone-tipped weapons were a significant innovation for Middle Pleistocene hominins. Hafted hunting technology represents the development of new cognitive and social learning mechanisms within the genus Homo, and may have provided a foraging advantage over simpler forms of hunting technology, such as a sharpened wooden spear. However, the nature of this foraging advantage has not been confirmed. Experimental studies and ethnographic reports provide conflicting results regarding the relative importance of the functional, economic, and social roles of hafted hunting technology. The controlled experiment reported here was designed to test the functional hypothesis for stone-tipped weapons using spears and ballistics gelatin. It differs from previous investigations of this type because it includes a quantitative analysis of wound track profiles and focuses specifically on hand-delivered spear technology. Our results do not support the hypothesis that tipped spears penetrate deeper than untipped spears. However, tipped spears create a significantly larger inner wound cavity that widens distally. This inner wound cavity is analogous to the permanent wound cavity in ballistics research, which is considered the key variable affecting the relative ‘stopping power’ or ‘killing power’ of a penetrating weapon. Tipped spears conferred a functional advantage to Middle Pleistocene hominins, potentially affecting the frequency and regularity of hunting success with important implications for human adaptation and life history. PMID:25162397

  7. Cumulative (Dis)Advantage and the Matthew Effect in Life-Course Analysis.

    PubMed

    Bask, Miia; Bask, Mikael

    2015-01-01

    To foster a deeper understanding of the mechanisms behind inequality in society, it is crucial to work with well-defined concepts associated with such mechanisms. The aim of this paper is to define cumulative (dis)advantage and the Matthew effect. We argue that cumulative (dis)advantage is an intra-individual micro-level phenomenon, that the Matthew effect is an inter-individual macro-level phenomenon and that an appropriate measure of the Matthew effect focuses on the mechanism or dynamic process that generates inequality. The Matthew mechanism is, therefore, a better name for the phenomenon, where we provide a novel measure of the mechanism, including a proof-of-principle analysis using disposable personal income data. Finally, because socio-economic theory should be able to explain cumulative (dis)advantage and the Matthew mechanism when they are detected in data, we discuss the types of models that may explain the phenomena. We argue that interactions-based models in the literature traditions of analytical sociology and statistical mechanics serve this purpose.

  8. Selective advantage of trisomic human cells cultured in non-standard conditions.

    PubMed

    Rutledge, Samuel D; Douglas, Temple A; Nicholson, Joshua M; Vila-Casadesús, Maria; Kantzler, Courtney L; Wangsa, Darawalee; Barroso-Vilares, Monika; Kale, Shiv D; Logarinho, Elsa; Cimini, Daniela

    2016-01-01

    An abnormal chromosome number, a condition known as aneuploidy, is a ubiquitous feature of cancer cells. A number of studies have shown that aneuploidy impairs cellular fitness. However, there is also evidence that aneuploidy can arise in response to specific challenges and can confer a selective advantage under certain environmental stresses. Cancer cells are likely exposed to a number of challenging conditions arising within the tumor microenvironment. To investigate whether aneuploidy may confer a selective advantage to cancer cells, we employed a controlled experimental system. We used the diploid, colorectal cancer cell line DLD1 and two DLD1-derived cell lines carrying single-chromosome aneuploidies to assess a number of cancer cell properties. Such properties, which included rates of proliferation and apoptosis, anchorage-independent growth, and invasiveness, were assessed both under standard culture conditions and under conditions of stress (i.e., serum starvation, drug treatment, hypoxia). Similar experiments were performed in diploid vs. aneuploid non-transformed human primary cells. Overall, our data show that aneuploidy can confer selective advantage to human cells cultured under non-standard conditions. These findings indicate that aneuploidy can increase the adaptability of cells, even those, such as cancer cells, that are already characterized by increased proliferative capacity and aggressive tumorigenic phenotypes. PMID:26956415

  9. Reducing rotor weight

    SciTech Connect

    Cheney, M.C.

    1997-12-31

    The cost of energy for renewables has gained greater significance in recent years due to the drop in price in some competing energy sources, particularly natural gas. In pursuit of lower manufacturing costs for wind turbine systems, work was conducted to explore an innovative rotor designed to reduce weight and cost over conventional rotor systems. Trade-off studies were conducted to measure the influence of number of blades, stiffness, and manufacturing method on COE. The study showed that increasing number of blades at constant solidity significantly reduced rotor weight and that manufacturing the blades using pultrusion technology produced the lowest cost per pound. Under contracts with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the California Energy Commission, a 400 kW (33m diameter) turbine was designed employing this technology. The project included tests of an 80 kW (15.5m diameter) dynamically scaled rotor which demonstrated the viability of the design.

  10. Revisiting the Hispanic mortality advantage in the United States: the role of smoking.

    PubMed

    Fenelon, Andrew

    2013-04-01

    More than three decades of health disparities research in the United States has consistently found lower adult mortality risks among Hispanics than their non-Hispanic white counterparts, despite lower socioeconomic status among Hispanics. Explanations for the "Hispanic Paradox" include selective migration and cultural factors, though neither has received convincing support. This paper uses a large nationally representative survey of health and smoking behavior to examine whether smoking can explain life expectancy advantage of Hispanics over US-born non-Hispanics whites, with special attention to individuals of Mexican origin. It tests the selective migration hypothesis using data on smoking among Mexico-to-US migrants in Mexico and the United States. Both US-born and foreign-born Mexican-Americans exhibit a life expectancy advantage vis-à-vis whites. All other Hispanics only show a longevity advantage among the foreign-born, while those born in the United States are disadvantaged relative to whites. Smoking-attributable mortality explains the majority of the advantage for Mexican-Americans, with more than 60% of the gap deriving from lower rates of smoking among Mexican-Americans. There is no evidence of selective migration with respect to smoking; Mexicans who migrate to the US smoke at similar rates to Mexicans who remain in Mexico, with both groups smoking substantially less than non-Hispanic whites in the US. The results suggest that more research is needed to effectively explain the low burden of smoking among Mexican-Americans in the United States. PMID:23453311

  11. Ontogenetic change in skull morphology and mechanical advantage in the spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta).

    PubMed

    Tanner, Jaime B; Zelditch, Miriam L; Lundrigan, Barbara L; Holekamp, Kay E

    2010-03-01

    Weaning represents a challenging transition for young mammals, one particularly difficult for species coping with extreme conditions during feeding. Spotted hyenas (Crocuta crocuta) experience such extreme conditions imposed by intense feeding competition during which the ability to consume large quantities of food quickly is highly advantageous. As adult spotted hyenas have massive skulls specialized for durophagy and can feed very rapidly, young individuals are likely at a competitive disadvantage until that specialized morphology is completely developed. Here we document developmental changes in skull size, shape, and mechanical advantage of the jaws. Sampling an ontogenetic series of Crocuta skulls from individuals ranging in age from 2 months to 18 years, we use linear measurements and geometric morphometrics to test hypotheses suggesting that size, limited mechanical advantage of the jaws, and/or limited attachment sites for jaw muscles might constrain the feeding performance of juveniles. We also examine skull development in relation to key life history events, including weaning and reproductive maturity, to inquire whether ontogeny of the feeding apparatus is slower or more protracted in this species than in carnivores not specialized for durophagy. We find that, although mechanical advantage reaches maturity in hyenas at 22 months, adult skull size is not achieved until 29 months of age, and skull shape does not reach maturity until 35 months. The latter is nearly 2 years after mean weaning age, and more than 1 year after reproductive maturity. Thus, skull development in Crocuta is indeed protracted relative to that in most other carnivores. Based on the skull features that continue to change and to provide additional muscle attachment area, protracted development may be largely due to development of the massive musculature required by durophagy. These findings may ultimately shed light on the adaptive significance of the unusual "role-reversed" pattern of

  12. Ontogenetic change in skull morphology and mechanical advantage in the spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta).

    PubMed

    Tanner, Jaime B; Zelditch, Miriam L; Lundrigan, Barbara L; Holekamp, Kay E

    2010-03-01

    Weaning represents a challenging transition for young mammals, one particularly difficult for species coping with extreme conditions during feeding. Spotted hyenas (Crocuta crocuta) experience such extreme conditions imposed by intense feeding competition during which the ability to consume large quantities of food quickly is highly advantageous. As adult spotted hyenas have massive skulls specialized for durophagy and can feed very rapidly, young individuals are likely at a competitive disadvantage until that specialized morphology is completely developed. Here we document developmental changes in skull size, shape, and mechanical advantage of the jaws. Sampling an ontogenetic series of Crocuta skulls from individuals ranging in age from 2 months to 18 years, we use linear measurements and geometric morphometrics to test hypotheses suggesting that size, limited mechanical advantage of the jaws, and/or limited attachment sites for jaw muscles might constrain the feeding performance of juveniles. We also examine skull development in relation to key life history events, including weaning and reproductive maturity, to inquire whether ontogeny of the feeding apparatus is slower or more protracted in this species than in carnivores not specialized for durophagy. We find that, although mechanical advantage reaches maturity in hyenas at 22 months, adult skull size is not achieved until 29 months of age, and skull shape does not reach maturity until 35 months. The latter is nearly 2 years after mean weaning age, and more than 1 year after reproductive maturity. Thus, skull development in Crocuta is indeed protracted relative to that in most other carnivores. Based on the skull features that continue to change and to provide additional muscle attachment area, protracted development may be largely due to development of the massive musculature required by durophagy. These findings may ultimately shed light on the adaptive significance of the unusual "role-reversed" pattern of

  13. "A Latino Advantage in Oral Health-Related Quality of Life is Modified by Nativity Status"

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Explanations for the social gradient in health status are informed by the rare exceptions. This cross-sectional observational study examined one such exception, the “Latino paradox” by investigating the presence of a Latino advantage in oral health-related quality of life and the effect of nativity status on this relationship. A nationally representative sample of adults (n = 4208) completed the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2003–2004. The impact of oral disorders on oral health-related quality of life was evaluated using the NHANES Oral Health Impact Profile. Exposures of interest were race, ethnicity and nativity status. Covariates included sociodemographic characteristics, smoking status, self-rated health, access to dental care and number of teeth. Unconditional logistic regression models estimated odds of impaired oral health-related quality of life for racial/ethnic and nativity groups compared to the Non-Latino white population. Overall prevalence of impaired oral health-related quality of life was 15.1%. A protective effect of Latino ethnicity was modified by nativity status, such that Latino immigrants experienced substantially better outcomes than non-Latino whites. However the effect was limited to first-generation Latinos. U.S. born Latinos did not share the oral health-related quality of life advantage of their foreign-born counterparts. This advantage was not attributable to the healthy migrant phenomenon since immigrants of non-Latino origin did not differ from Non-Latino whites. The excess risk among Non-Hispanic Blacks was rendered non-significant after adjustment for socioeconomic position. A protective effect conferred by Latino nativity is unexpected given relatively disadvantaged socioeconomic position of this group, their language barrier and restrictions to needed dental care. As the Latino advantage in oral health-related quality of life is not explained by healthy immigrant selection, cultural explanations

  14. The Self-Advantage in Visual Speech Processing Enhances Audiovisual Speech Recognition in Noise

    PubMed Central

    Tye-Murray, Nancy; Spehar, Brent P.; Myerson, Joel; Hale, Sandra; Sommers, Mitchell S.

    2014-01-01

    Individuals lipread themselves more accurately than they lipread others when only the visual speech signal is available (Tye-Murray, Spehar, Myerson, Hale, & Sommers, 2013). This self-advantage for vision-only speech recognition is consistent with the common-coding hypothesis (Prinz, 1997), which posits (1) that observing an action activates the same motor plan representation as actually performing that action and (2) that observing one’s own actions activates motor plan representations more than the others’ actions because of greater congruity between percepts and corresponding motor plans. The present study extends this line of research to audiovisual speech recognition by examining whether there is a self-advantage when the visual signal is added to the auditory signal under poor listening conditions. Participants were assigned to sub-groups for round-robin testing in which each participant was paired with every member of their subgroup, including themselves, serving as both talker and listener/observer. On average, the benefit participants obtained from the visual signal when they were the talker was greater than when the talker was someone else and also was greater than the benefit others obtained from observing as well as listening to them. Moreover, the self-advantage in audiovisual speech recognition was significant after statistically controlling for individual differences in both participants’ ability to benefit from a visual speech signal and the extent to which their own visual speech signal benefited others. These findings are consistent with our previous finding of a self-advantage in lipreading and with the hypothesis of a common code for action perception and motor plan representation. PMID:25421408

  15. The self-advantage in visual speech processing enhances audiovisual speech recognition in noise.

    PubMed

    Tye-Murray, Nancy; Spehar, Brent P; Myerson, Joel; Hale, Sandra; Sommers, Mitchell S

    2015-08-01

    Individuals lip read themselves more accurately than they lip read others when only the visual speech signal is available (Tye-Murray et al., Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 20, 115-119, 2013). This self-advantage for vision-only speech recognition is consistent with the common-coding hypothesis (Prinz, European Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 9, 129-154, 1997), which posits (1) that observing an action activates the same motor plan representation as actually performing that action and (2) that observing one's own actions activates motor plan representations more than the others' actions because of greater congruity between percepts and corresponding motor plans. The present study extends this line of research to audiovisual speech recognition by examining whether there is a self-advantage when the visual signal is added to the auditory signal under poor listening conditions. Participants were assigned to sub-groups for round-robin testing in which each participant was paired with every member of their subgroup, including themselves, serving as both talker and listener/observer. On average, the benefit participants obtained from the visual signal when they were the talker was greater than when the talker was someone else and also was greater than the benefit others obtained from observing as well as listening to them. Moreover, the self-advantage in audiovisual speech recognition was significant after statistically controlling for individual differences in both participants' ability to benefit from a visual speech signal and the extent to which their own visual speech signal benefited others. These findings are consistent with our previous finding of a self-advantage in lip reading and with the hypothesis of a common code for action perception and motor plan representation. PMID:25421408

  16. Behavioral Interventions to Reduce Alcohol Use Among Patients with Hepatitis C: A Systematic Review.

    PubMed

    Sims, Omar T; Maynard, Quentin R; Melton, Pam A

    2016-10-01

    Alcohol use is a barrier to pharmacologic treatment for hepatitis C virus (HCV). It is advantageous for medical and clinical social workers engaged in HCV care to be knowledgeable of behavioral interventions that can be used to reduce alcohol use among patients with HCV. This article identifies and describes studies that designed and implemented behavioral interventions to reduce alcohol use among patients with HCV in clinical settings. To achieve this goal, this article conducts a rigorous systematic review to identify peer-reviewed articles, describes each behavioral intervention, and reports primary outcomes of each study included in the review. PMID:27295132

  17. Advantages, Disadvantages, and Trend of Integrative Medicine in the Treatment of Heart Failure.

    PubMed

    Zhang, PeiYing

    2015-06-01

    Integrative medicine therapy using traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) combined with western medicine has shown some advantages in treating heart failure (HF), such as holistic concept; multi-target treatment; dialectical logic; personalized therapy; formulae compatibility; and reduction of side effects of western medicine. However, problems still exist in TCM treatment of HF, including non-uniformed categorization of TCM, lack of standardized syndrome differentiation and lack of an evidence base. The future of treatment of HF seems to be focused on reversing ventricular remodeling, improving cardiac rehabilitation, and accelerating experimental research and drug discovery in TCM.

  18. Problem-Based Learning in Biomechanics: Advantages, Challenges, and Implementation Strategies.

    PubMed

    Clyne, Alisa Morss; Billiar, Kristen L

    2016-07-01

    Problem-based learning (PBL) has been shown to be effective in biomedical engineering education, particularly in motivating student learning, increasing knowledge retention, and developing problem solving, communication, and teamwork skills. However, PBL adoption remains limited by real challenges in effective implementation. In this paper, we review the literature on advantages and challenges of PBL and present our own experiences. We also provide practical guidelines for implementing PBL, including two examples of PBL modules from biomechanics courses at two different institutions. Overall, we conclude that the benefits for both professors and students support the use of PBL in biomedical engineering education.

  19. Reducing and managing overtime.

    PubMed

    Sachs, L

    2001-01-01

    Overtime is undesirable for many reasons. It can deteriorate staff morale, reinforce and reward inefficiency, and reach deep into your practice's pockets, often without improving your bottom line. Many employers overuse overtime and hold many misconceptions about their legal obligations. This article explores specific practice management methods for reducing or eliminating the need for overtime. It dispels three popular misconceptions about employers' legal obligations when paying overtime. Finally, it summarizes the basic rules for paying overtime, including how to calculate an employee's regular rate of pay, how to structure a legitimate workweek, and when and how overtime payments should be made. PMID:11317579

  20. Advantage of four-electrode over two-electrode defibrillators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bragard, J.; Šimić, A.; Laroze, D.; Elorza, J.

    2015-12-01

    Defibrillation is the standard clinical treatment used to stop ventricular fibrillation. An electrical device delivers a controlled amount of electrical energy via a pair of electrodes in order to reestablish a normal heart rate. We propose a technique that is a combination of biphasic shocks applied with a four-electrode system rather than the standard two-electrode system. We use a numerical model of a one-dimensional ring of cardiac tissue in order to test and evaluate the benefit of this technique. We compare three different shock protocols, namely a monophasic and two types of biphasic shocks. The results obtained by using a four-electrode system are compared quantitatively with those obtained with the standard two-electrode system. We find that a huge reduction in defibrillation threshold is achieved with the four-electrode system. For the most efficient protocol (asymmetric biphasic), we obtain a reduction in excess of 80% in the energy required for a defibrillation success rate of 90%. The mechanisms of successful defibrillation are also analyzed. This reveals that the advantage of asymmetric biphasic shocks with four electrodes lies in the duration of the cathodal and anodal phase of the shock.

  1. Are survival processing memory advantages based on ancestral priorities?

    PubMed

    Soderstrom, Nicholas C; McCabe, David P

    2011-06-01

    Recent research has suggested that our memory systems are especially tuned to process information according to its survival relevance, and that inducing problems of "ancestral priorities" faced by our ancestors should lead to optimal recall performance (Nairne & Pandeirada, Cognitive Psychology, 2010). The present study investigated the specificity of this idea by comparing an ancestor-consistent scenario and a modern survival scenario that involved threats that were encountered by human ancestors (e.g., predators) or threats from fictitious creatures (i.e., zombies). Participants read one of four survival scenarios in which the environment and the explicit threat were either consistent or inconsistent with ancestrally based problems (i.e., grasslands-predators, grasslands-zombies, city-attackers, city-zombies), or they rated words for pleasantness. After rating words based on their survival relevance (or pleasantness), the participants performed a free recall task. All survival scenarios led to better recall than did pleasantness ratings, but recall was greater when zombies were the threat, as compared to predators or attackers. Recall did not differ for the modern (i.e., city) and ancestral (i.e., grasslands) scenarios. These recall differences persisted when valence and arousal ratings for the scenarios were statistically controlled as well. These data challenge the specificity of ancestral priorities in survival-processing advantages in memory.

  2. Does Medicare Advantage Cost Less Than Traditional Medicare?

    PubMed

    Biles, Brian; Casillas, Giselle; Guterman, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    The costs of providing benefits to enrollees in private Medicare Advantage (MA) plans are slightly less, on average, than what traditional Medicare spends per beneficiary in the same county. However, MA plans that are able to keep their costs comparatively low are concen­trated in a fairly small number of U.S. counties. In the 25 counties where the cost differences between MA plans and traditional Medicare are largest, MA plans spent a total of $5.2 billion less than what traditional Medicare would have been expected to spend on the same benefi­ciaries, with health maintenance organizations (HMOs) accounting for all of that difference. In the rest of the country, MA plans spent $4.8 billion above the expected costs under tradi­tional Medicare. Broad determinations about the relative efficiency of MA plans and traditional Medicare can therefore be misleading, as they fail to take into account local conditions and individual plans' performance. PMID:26934756

  3. Are survival processing memory advantages based on ancestral priorities?

    PubMed

    Soderstrom, Nicholas C; McCabe, David P

    2011-06-01

    Recent research has suggested that our memory systems are especially tuned to process information according to its survival relevance, and that inducing problems of "ancestral priorities" faced by our ancestors should lead to optimal recall performance (Nairne & Pandeirada, Cognitive Psychology, 2010). The present study investigated the specificity of this idea by comparing an ancestor-consistent scenario and a modern survival scenario that involved threats that were encountered by human ancestors (e.g., predators) or threats from fictitious creatures (i.e., zombies). Participants read one of four survival scenarios in which the environment and the explicit threat were either consistent or inconsistent with ancestrally based problems (i.e., grasslands-predators, grasslands-zombies, city-attackers, city-zombies), or they rated words for pleasantness. After rating words based on their survival relevance (or pleasantness), the participants performed a free recall task. All survival scenarios led to better recall than did pleasantness ratings, but recall was greater when zombies were the threat, as compared to predators or attackers. Recall did not differ for the modern (i.e., city) and ancestral (i.e., grasslands) scenarios. These recall differences persisted when valence and arousal ratings for the scenarios were statistically controlled as well. These data challenge the specificity of ancestral priorities in survival-processing advantages in memory. PMID:21327372

  4. Improving species-specific IDMS: the advantages of triple IDMS.

    PubMed

    Frank, Claudia; Rienitz, Olaf; Swart, Claudia; Schiel, Detlef

    2013-02-01

    Triple isotope dilution mass spectrometry (triple IDMS) has been applied for the first time on protein quantification, especially on transferrin. Transferrin as an acute phase protein is a marker for several inflammation processes in the human body. Therefore, in Germany, the accurate and precise measurement of this important analyte is required. In this work, a new approach to triple IDMS is described and compared to double IDMS. Also, complete uncertainty budgets for both methods were set up to demonstrate the ability of this method to be used as a reference procedure. The relative expanded uncertainty (k=2) for triple IDMS (3.6 %) is smaller than the one for double IDMS (4.0 %). The content of transferrin found in the human serum reference material ERM-DA470k/IFCC ((2.41±0.08) g/kg) with both methods was in good agreement with each other and with the certificate. For triple IDMS ((2.426±0.086) g/kg) and for double IDMS ((2.317±0.092) g/kg), transferrin was determined. Although triple IDMS is a little more time consuming compared to double IDMS, there is the advantage that the isotopic composition of the spike material does not have to be determined. This is very useful especially in case of a marginal isotopic enrichment in the spike or problems with the accurate measurement of the spike isotope ratio.

  5. COMP-1 promotes competitive advantage of nematode sperm

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Jody M; Chavez, Daniela R; Stanfield, Gillian M

    2015-01-01

    Competition among sperm to fertilize oocytes is a ubiquitous feature of sexual reproduction as well as a profoundly important aspect of sexual selection. However, little is known about the cellular mechanisms sperm use to gain competitive advantage or how these mechanisms are regulated genetically. In this study, we utilize a forward genetic screen in Caenorhabditis elegans to identify a gene, comp-1, whose function is specifically required in competitive contexts. We show that comp-1 functions in sperm to modulate their migration through and localization within the reproductive tract, thereby promoting their access to oocytes. Contrary to previously described models, comp-1 mutant sperm show no defects in size or velocity, thereby defining a novel pathway for preferential usage. Our results indicate not only that sperm functional traits can influence the outcome of sperm competition, but also that these traits can be modulated in a context-dependent manner depending on the presence of competing sperm. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.05423.001 PMID:25789512

  6. Epistasis and the selective advantage of sex and recombination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Oliveira, Viviane M.; da Silva, Juliana K.; Campos, Paulo R. A.

    2008-09-01

    The understanding of the central mechanisms favoring sex and recombination in real populations is one of the fundamental issues in evolutionary biology. Based on a previous stochastic formulation for the study of sex, here we aim to investigate the conditions under which epistasis favors the fixation of the sexual mode of reproduction in a given population. In addition, we try to identify the evolutionary forces which contribute to this process. One considers a finite population model which assumes the existence of a recombination modifier allele that can activate the recombination mechanism. We have found that sex is very little favored in a scenario of antagonistic epistasis, and this advantage only occurs in a narrow range of values of the selection coefficient sd . On the other hand, synergistic epistasis favors recombination in a very broad domain. However, the major mechanism contributing to the spreading of the modifier allele depends on the range of values of sd . At large sd , background selection favors recombination since it increases the efficacy of selection, while at low sd Muller’s ratchet is the leading mechanism.

  7. Safe Advantage on Dry Interim Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage

    SciTech Connect

    Romanato, L.S.

    2008-07-01

    This paper aims to present the advantages of dry cask storage in comparison with the wet storage (cooling water pools) for SNF. When the nuclear fuel is removed from the core reactor, it is moved to a storage unit and it wait for a final destination. Generally, the spent nuclear fuel (SNF) remains inside water pools within the reactors facility for the radioactive activity decay. After some period of time in pools, SNF can be sent to a definitive deposition in a geological repository and handled as radioactive waste or to reprocessing facilities, or still, wait for a future solution. Meanwhile, SNF remains stored for a period of time in dry or wet facilities, depending on the method adopted by the nuclear power plant or other plans of the country. Interim storage, up to 20 years ago, was exclusively wet and if the nuclear facility had to be decommissioned another storage solution had to be found. At the present time, after a preliminary cooling of the SNF elements inside the water pool, the elements can be stored in dry facilities. This kind of storage does not need complex radiation monitoring and it is safer then wet one. Casks, either concrete or metallic, are safer, especially on occurrence of earthquakes, like that occurred at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant, in Japan on July 16, 2007. (authors)

  8. Mission and System Advantages of Iodine Hall Thrusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dankanich, John W.; Szabo, James; Pote, Bruce; Oleson, Steve; Kamhawi, Hani

    2014-01-01

    The exploration of alternative propellants for Hall thrusters continues to be of interest to the community. Investments have been made and continue for the maturation of iodine based Hall thrusters. Iodine testing has shown comparable performance to xenon. However, iodine has a higher storage density and resulting higher ?V capability for volume constrained systems. Iodine's vapor pressure is low enough to permit low-pressure storage, but high enough to minimize potential adverse spacecraft-thruster interactions. The low vapor pressure also means that iodine does not condense inside the thruster at ordinary operating temperatures. Iodine is safe, it stores at sub-atmospheric pressure, and can be stored unregulated for years on end; whether on the ground or on orbit. Iodine fills a niche for both low power (<1kW) and high power (>10kW) electric propulsion regimes. A range of missions have been evaluated for direct comparison of Iodine and Xenon options. The results show advantages of iodine Hall systems for both small and microsatellite application and for very large exploration class missions.

  9. Advantages and applications of CAR-expressing natural killer cells

    PubMed Central

    Glienke, Wolfgang; Esser, Ruth; Priesner, Christoph; Suerth, Julia D.; Schambach, Axel; Wels, Winfried S.; Grez, Manuel; Kloess, Stephan; Arseniev, Lubomir; Koehl, Ulrike

    2015-01-01

    In contrast to donor T cells, natural killer (NK) cells are known to mediate anti-cancer effects without the risk of inducing graft-versus-host disease (GvHD). In order to improve cytotoxicity against resistant cancer cells, auspicious efforts have been made with chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) expressing T- and NK cells. These CAR-modified cells express antigen receptors against tumor-associated surface antigens, thus redirecting the effector cells and enhancing tumor-specific immunosurveillance. However, many cancer antigens are also expressed on healthy tissues, potentially leading to off tumor/on target toxicity by CAR-engineered cells. In order to control such potentially severe side effects, the insertion of suicide genes into CAR-modified effectors can provide a means for efficient depletion of these cells. While CAR-expressing T cells have entered successfully clinical trials, experience with CAR-engineered NK cells is mainly restricted to pre-clinical investigations and predominantly to NK cell lines. In this review we summarize the data on CAR expressing NK cells focusing on the possible advantage using these short-lived effector cells and discuss the necessity of suicide switches. Furthermore, we address the compliance of such modified NK cells with regulatory requirements as a new field in cellular immunotherapy. PMID:25729364

  10. Medicare Advantage associated with lower mortality for incident dialysis patients.

    PubMed

    Brunelli, Steven M; Sibbel, Scott; Colson, Carey; Hunt, Abigail; Nissenson, Allen R; Krishnan, Mahesh

    2015-12-01

    Physicians across the care continuum are increasingly aligned around the belief that coordinated care can improve patient outcomes. As the principal caregivers for one of the most medically fragile patient groups in healthcare, nephrologists are especially attuned to the potential value of integrated care. Medicare Advantage (MA) offers one way to test this hypothesis. By law, end-stage renal disease patients currently cannot enroll into an MA plan, but if they develop ESRD while in such a plan, they may continue to be enrolled. The contrast between these patients and their counterparts who carry Medicare fee for service (MFFS) thereby represents a natural experiment that affords an opportunity to examine whether enrollment in a coordinated care system may improve outcomes. In order to promote (unbiased) comparison of patients in a non-randomized context, we propensity score-matched incident dialysis patients enrolled in MA versus those in MFFS. The data demonstrate that patients who were enrolled in an MA plan upon initiation of dialysis had a 9% lower mortality rate than their MFFS counterparts. This beneficial association of MA enrollment was found to be sustained over the first two years of dialysis treatment.

  11. Hydrodynamic flows can induce selective advantages among species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tesser, Francesca; Benzi, Roberto; Clercx, Herman J. H.; Nelson, David R.; Perlekar, Prasad; Toschi, Federico

    2013-11-01

    Evolutionary forces such as genetic drift, selection, mutation and spatial diffusion act to change the genetic composition of populations. Such problems can be modeled as a system of binary reactions between competing individuals, involving births and deaths, and progressing at specific rates. An inhomogeneous or time-dependent spatial structure has the effect of modulating the interaction between individuals. To explore this problem further, we consider the dynamics and evolution of genetically diverse populations in a fluid environment where a flow field transports individuals in combination with birth and death processes, thus driving genetic inhomogeneities. An individual-based model in continuous space with spatial diffusion implements stochastic demographic rules for a fluctuating population size and introduces the advection of simple realistic flow fields. The system is analyzed in terms of fixation probabilities and fixation times as well as the behavior of spatial correlations. Provided organismic reproduction times are faster than the characteristic time scales of the flow, fluid ecosystems can by themselves induce spatially non-homogeneous selective advantages.

  12. [Advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing hospital microbiological testings].

    PubMed

    Komatsu, Masaru

    2011-10-01

    In Japan, laws and ordinances were enforced to relax the regulation of the clinical laboratory setting in hospitals by revising the law of medical institutions in 2001. For this reason, outsourcing hospital microbiological testing, particularly by medium- or small-sized hospitals, was encouraged. The advantage of outsourcing microbiological testing is promotion of an efficient hospital management by cost saving. In contrast, the disadvantages are as follows: deterioration of specimen quality by extension of transportation time, delay in reporting by an independent laboratory compared with that by a hospital-based laboratory; this report is generally obtained within 1 or 2 days, difficulty and lack of communication between the laboratory staff and physician, and deterioration of the value of the microbiology report and the quality of the infection control system in a hospital. In addition to performing profit-related maintenance, independent laboratories should strive hard to maintain the same quality as that of a laboratory registered in a hospital. Furthermore, the new role of independent laboratories demands them to have a system allowing instant communication of information regarding the crisis control of infectious diseases to a hospital.

  13. [Laboratory unification: advantages and disadvantages for clinical microbiology].

    PubMed

    Andreu, Antonia; Matas, Lurdes

    2010-10-01

    This article aims to reflect on which areas or tasks of microbiology laboratories could be unified with those of clinical biochemistry, hematology, immunology or pathology laboratories to benefit patients and the health system, as well as the areas that should remain independent since their amalgamation would not only fail to provide a benefit but could even jeopardize the quality of microbiological diagnosis, and consequently patient care. To do this, the distinct analytic phases of diagnosis are analyzed, and the advantages and disadvantages of amalgamation are evaluated in each phase. The pros and cons of the unification of certain areas such as the computer system, occupational risk units, customer service, purchasing logistics, and materials storage, etc, are also discussed. Lastly, the effect of unification on urgent microbiology diagnosis is analyzed. Microbiological diagnosis should be unique. The microbiologist should perform an overall evaluation of the distinct techniques used for a particular patient, both those that involve direct diagnosis (staining, culture, antigen detection techniques or molecular techniques) and indirect diagnosis (antibody detection). Moreover, the microbiology laboratory should be independent, with highly trained technicians and specialists in microbiology that provide added value as experts in infection and as key figures in the process of establishing a correct etiological diagnosis.

  14. On the Shallow Processing (Dis)Advantage: Grammar and Economy

    PubMed Central

    Koornneef, Arnout; Reuland, Eric

    2016-01-01

    In the psycholinguistic literature it has been proposed that readers and listeners often adopt a “good-enough” processing strategy in which a “shallow” representation of an utterance driven by (top-down) extra-grammatical processes has a processing advantage over a “deep” (bottom-up) grammatically-driven representation of that same utterance. In the current contribution we claim, both on theoretical and experimental grounds, that this proposal is overly simplistic. Most importantly, in the domain of anaphora there is now an accumulating body of evidence showing that the anaphoric dependencies between (reflexive) pronominals and their antecedents are subject to an economy hierarchy. In this economy hierarchy, deriving anaphoric dependencies by deep—grammatical—operations requires less processing costs than doing so by shallow—extra-grammatical—operations. In addition, in case of ambiguity when both a shallow and a deep derivation are available to the parser, the latter is actually preferred. This, we argue, contradicts the basic assumptions of the shallow–deep dichotomy and, hence, a rethinking of the good-enough processing framework is warranted. PMID:26903897

  15. [Biomarkers for liver fibrosis: advances, advantages and disadvantages].

    PubMed

    Cequera, A; García de León Méndez, M C

    2014-01-01

    Liver cirrhosis in Mexico is one of the most important causes of death in persons between the ages of 25 and 50 years. One of the reasons for therapeutic failure is the lack of knowledge about the molecular mechanisms that cause liver disorder and make it irreversible. One of its prevalent anatomical characteristics is an excessive deposition of fibrous tissue that takes different forms depending on etiology and disease stage. Liver biopsy, traditionally regarded as the gold standard of fibrosis staging, has been brought into question over the past decade, resulting in the proposal for developing non-invasive technologies based on different, but complementary, approaches: a biological one that takes the serum levels of products arising from the fibrosis into account, and a more physical one that evaluates scarring of the liver by methods such as ultrasound and magnetic resonance elastography; some of the methods were originally studied and validated in patients with hepatitis C. There is great interest in determining non-invasive markers for the diagnosis of liver fibrosis, since at present there is no panel or parameter efficient and reliable enough for diagnostic use. In this paper, we describe the biomarkers that are currently being used for studying liver fibrosis in humans, their advantages and disadvantages, as well as the implementation of new-generation technologies and the evaluation of their possible use in the diagnosis of fibrosis.

  16. On the Shallow Processing (Dis)Advantage: Grammar and Economy.

    PubMed

    Koornneef, Arnout; Reuland, Eric

    2016-01-01

    In the psycholinguistic literature it has been proposed that readers and listeners often adopt a "good-enough" processing strategy in which a "shallow" representation of an utterance driven by (top-down) extra-grammatical processes has a processing advantage over a "deep" (bottom-up) grammatically-driven representation of that same utterance. In the current contribution we claim, both on theoretical and experimental grounds, that this proposal is overly simplistic. Most importantly, in the domain of anaphora there is now an accumulating body of evidence showing that the anaphoric dependencies between (reflexive) pronominals and their antecedents are subject to an economy hierarchy. In this economy hierarchy, deriving anaphoric dependencies by deep-grammatical-operations requires less processing costs than doing so by shallow-extra-grammatical-operations. In addition, in case of ambiguity when both a shallow and a deep derivation are available to the parser, the latter is actually preferred. This, we argue, contradicts the basic assumptions of the shallow-deep dichotomy and, hence, a rethinking of the good-enough processing framework is warranted.

  17. Making Medicare advantage a middle-class program.

    PubMed

    Glazer, Jacob; McGuire, Thomas G

    2013-03-01

    This paper studies the role of Medicare's premium policy in sorting beneficiaries between traditional Medicare (TM) and managed care plans in the Medicare advantage (MA) program. Beneficiaries vary in their demand for care. TM fully accommodates demand but creates a moral hazard inefficiency. MA rations care but disregards some elements of the demand. We describe an efficient assignment of beneficiaries to these two options, and argue that efficiency requires an MA program oriented to serve the large middle part of the distribution of demand: the "middle class." Current Medicare policy of a "single premium" for MA plans cannot achieve efficient sorting. We characterize the demand-based premium policy that can implement the efficient assignment of enrollees to plans. If only a single premium is feasible, the second-best policy involves too many of the low-demand individuals in MA and a too low level of services relative to the first best. We identify approaches to using premium policy to revitalize MA and improve the efficiency of Medicare.

  18. [Laboratory unification: advantages and disadvantages for clinical microbiology].

    PubMed

    Andreu, Antonia; Matas, Lurdes

    2010-10-01

    This article aims to reflect on which areas or tasks of microbiology laboratories could be unified with those of clinical biochemistry, hematology, immunology or pathology laboratories to benefit patients and the health system, as well as the areas that should remain independent since their amalgamation would not only fail to provide a benefit but could even jeopardize the quality of microbiological diagnosis, and consequently patient care. To do this, the distinct analytic phases of diagnosis are analyzed, and the advantages and disadvantages of amalgamation are evaluated in each phase. The pros and cons of the unification of certain areas such as the computer system, occupational risk units, customer service, purchasing logistics, and materials storage, etc, are also discussed. Lastly, the effect of unification on urgent microbiology diagnosis is analyzed. Microbiological diagnosis should be unique. The microbiologist should perform an overall evaluation of the distinct techniques used for a particular patient, both those that involve direct diagnosis (staining, culture, antigen detection techniques or molecular techniques) and indirect diagnosis (antibody detection). Moreover, the microbiology laboratory should be independent, with highly trained technicians and specialists in microbiology that provide added value as experts in infection and as key figures in the process of establishing a correct etiological diagnosis. PMID:21129589

  19. Flow mediated endothelium function: advantages of an automatic measuring technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maio, Yamila; Casciaro, Mariano E.; José Urcola y, Maria; Craiem, Damian

    2007-11-01

    The objective of this work is to show the advantages of a non invasive automated method for measuring flow mediated dilation (FMD) in the forearm. This dilation takes place in answer to a shear tension generated by the increase of blood flow, sensed by the endothelium, after the liberation of an occlusion sustained in the time. The method consists of three stages: the continuous acquisition of images of the brachial artery using ultrasound techniques, the pulse to pulse measurement of the vessel's diameter by means of a border detection algorithm, and the later analysis of the results. By means of this technique one cannot only obtain the maximum dilation percentage (FMD%), but a continuous diameter curve that allows to evaluate other relevant aspects such as dilation speed, dilation sustain in time and general maneuver performance. The simplicity of this method, robustness of the technique and accessibility of the required elements makes it a viable alternative of great clinical value for diagnosis in the early detection of numerous cardiovascular pathologies.

  20. Advantages and challenges of dissimilar materials in automotive lightweight construction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weberpals, Jan-Philipp; Schmidt, Philipp A.; Böhm, Daniel; Müller, Steffen

    2015-03-01

    The core of future automotive lightweight materials is the joining technology of various material mixes. The type of joining will be essential, particularly in electrified propulsion systems, especially as an improved electrical energy transmission leads to a higher total efficiency of the vehicle. The most evident parts to start the optimization process are the traction battery, the electrical performance modules and the engines. Consequently aluminum plays a very central role for lightweight construction applications. However, the physical-technical requirements of components often require the combination with other materials. Thus the joining of mixed material connections is an essential key technology for many of the current developments, for example in the areas E-Mobility, solar energy and lightweight construction. Due to these advantages mixed material joints are already established in the automotive industry and laser beam remote welding is now a focus technology for mixed material connections. The secret of the laser welding process with mixed materials lies within the different areas of the melting phase diagram depending on the mixing ratio and the cooling down rate. According to that areas with unwanted, prim, intermetallic phases arise in the fusion zone. Therefore, laser welding of mixed material connections can currently only be used with additional filler in the automotive industry.

  1. Stars advantages vs parallel coordinates: shape perception as visualization reserve

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grishin, Vladimir; Kovalerchuk, Boris

    2013-12-01

    Although shape perception is the main information channel for brain, it has been poor used by recent visualization techniques. The difficulties of its modeling are key obstacles for visualization theory and application. Known experimental estimates of shape perception capabilities have been made for low data dimension, and they were usually not connected with data structures. More applied approach for certain data structures detection by means of shape displays are considered by the example of analytical and experimental comparison of popular now Parallel Coordinates (PCs), i.e. 2D Cartesian displays of data vectors, with polar displays known as stars. Advantages of stars vs. PCs by Gestalt Laws are shown. About twice faster feature selection and classification with stars than PCs are showed by psychological experiments for hyper-tubes structures detection in data space with dimension up to 100-200 and its subspaces. This demonstrates great reserves of visualization enhancement in comparison with many recent techniques usually focused on few data attributes analysis.

  2. Making Medicare Advantage a Middle-Class Program

    PubMed Central

    Glazer, Jacob; McGuire, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    This paper studies the role of Medicare's premium policy in sorting beneficiaries between traditional Medicare (TM) and managed care plans in the Medicare Advantage (MA) program. Beneficiaries vary in their demand for care. TM fully accommodates demand but creates a moral hazard inefficiency. MA rations care but disregards some elements of the demand. We describe an efficient assignment of beneficiaries to these two options, and argue that efficiency requires an MA program oriented to serve the large middle part of the distribution of demand: the “middle class.” Current Medicare policy of a “single premium” for MA plans cannot achieve efficient sorting. We characterize the demand-based premium policy that can implement the efficient assignment of enrollees to plans. If only a single premium is feasible, the second-best policy involves too many of the low-demand individuals in MA and a too low level of services relative to the first best. We identify approaches to using premium policy to revitalize MA and improve the efficiency of Medicare. PMID:23454916

  3. The Advantages of ISDN for High-Speed Remote Access.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Galvin, Mark; Hauf, Al

    1997-01-01

    Explains why ISDN (integrated services digital network) is the most practical solution for high-speed remote access, including reliability, cost, flexibility, scaleability, standards, and manageability. Other data transmission options are discussed, including asymmetric digital subscriber lines (ADSL), high-speed digital subscriber lines (HDSL),…

  4. Changes in Reward after Gastric Bypass: the Advantages and Disadvantages.

    PubMed

    Scholtz, Samantha; Goldstone, Anthony P; le Roux, Carel W

    2015-10-01

    Gastric bypass surgery is an effective long-term weight loss intervention. Key to its success appears a putative shift in food preference away from high-energy-density foods associated with a reduced appetitive drive and loss of neural reactivity in the reward system of the brain towards food. Post-prandial exaggerated satiety gut hormone responses have been implicated as mediators. Whilst the positive impact of bariatric surgery on both physical and psychological outcomes for many patients is clearly evident, a subset of patients appear to be detrimentally affected by this loss of reward from food and by a lack of alternative strategies for regulating affect after surgery. Mindfulness training has emerged as a potential tool in reducing the need for immediate reward that underpins much of eating behaviour. Further research is needed to help identify patients who may be more vulnerable after gastric bypass and which forms of support may be most beneficial.

  5. Stepping to phase-perturbed metronome cues: multisensory advantage in movement synchrony but not correction

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Rachel L.; Spurgeon, Laura C.; Elliott, Mark T.

    2014-01-01

    Humans can synchronize movements with auditory beats or rhythms without apparent effort. This ability to entrain to the beat is considered automatic, such that any perturbations are corrected for, even if the perturbation was not consciously noted. Temporal correction of upper limb (e.g., finger tapping) and lower limb (e.g., stepping) movements to a phase perturbed auditory beat usually results in individuals being back in phase after just a few beats. When a metronome is presented in more than one sensory modality, a multisensory advantage is observed, with reduced temporal variability in finger tapping movements compared to unimodal conditions. Here, we investigate synchronization of lower limb movements (stepping in place) to auditory, visual and combined auditory-visual (AV) metronome cues. In addition, we compare movement corrections to phase advance and phase delay perturbations in the metronome for the three sensory modality conditions. We hypothesized that, as with upper limb movements, there would be a multisensory advantage, with stepping variability being lowest in the bimodal condition. As such, we further expected correction to the phase perturbation to be quickest in the bimodal condition. Our results revealed lower variability in the asynchronies between foot strikes and the metronome beats in the bimodal condition, compared to unimodal conditions. However, while participants corrected substantially quicker to perturbations in auditory compared to visual metronomes, there was no multisensory advantage in the phase correction task—correction under the bimodal condition was almost identical to the auditory-only (AO) condition. On the whole, we noted that corrections in the stepping task were smaller than those previously reported for finger tapping studies. We conclude that temporal corrections are not only affected by the reliability of the sensory information, but also the complexity of the movement itself. PMID:25309397

  6. A comprehensive stroke center patient registry: advantages, limitations, and lessons learned

    PubMed Central

    Siegler, James E.; Boehme, Amelia K.; Dorsey, Adrianne M.; Monlezun, Dominique J.; George, Alex J.; Shaban, Amir; Bockholt, H. Jeremy; Albright, Karen C.; Martin-Schild, Sheryl

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The use of a medical data registry allows institutions to effectively manage information for many different investigations related to the registry, as well as evaluate patient's trends over time, with the ultimate goal of recognizing trends that may improve outcomes in a particular patient population. Methods The purpose of this article is to illustrate our experience with a stroke patient registry at a comprehensive stroke center and highlight advantages, disadvantages, and lessons learned in the process of designing, implementing, and maintaining a stroke registry. We detail the process of stroke registry methodology, common data element (CDE) definitions, the generation of manuscripts from a registry, and the limitations. Advantages The largest advantage of a registry is the ability to prospectively add patients, while allowing investigators to go back and collect information retrospectively if needed. The continuous addition of new patients increases the sample size of studies from year to year, and it also allows reflection on clinical practices from previous years and the ability to investigate trends in patient management over time. Limitations The greatest limitation in this registry pertains to our single-entry technique where multiple sites of data entry and transfer may generate errors within the registry. Lessons Learned To reduce the potential for errors and maximize the accuracy and efficiency of the registry, we invest significant time in training competent registry users and project leaders. With effective training and transition of leadership positions, which are continuous and evolving processes, we have attempted to optimize our clinical research registry for knowledge gain and quality improvement at our center. PMID:26913217

  7. Advantages of improved timing accuracy in PET cameras using LSOscintillator

    SciTech Connect

    Moses, William W.

    2002-12-02

    PET scanners based on LSO have the potential forsignificantly better coincidence timing resolution than the 6 ns fwhmtypically achieved with BGO. This study analyzes the performanceenhancements made possible by improved timing as a function of thecoincidence time resolution. If 500 ps fwhm coincidence timing resolutioncan be achieved in a complete PET camera, the following four benefits canbe realized for whole-body FDG imaging: 1) The random event rate can bereduced by using a narrower coincidence timing window, increasing thepeak NECR by~;50 percent. 2) Using time-of-flight in the reconstructionalgorithm will reduce the noise variance by a factor of 5. 3) Emissionand transmission data can be acquired simultaneously, reducing the totalscan time. 4) Axial blurring can be reduced by using time-of-flight todetermine the correct axial plane that each event originated from. Whiletime-of-flight was extensively studied in the 1980's, practical factorslimited its effectiveness at that time and little attention has been paidto timing in PET since then. As these potential improvements aresubstantial and the advent of LSO PET cameras gives us the means toobtain them without other sacrifices, efforts to improve PET timingshould resume after their long dormancy.

  8. SU-F-BRD-05: Dosimetric Comparison of Protocol-Based SBRT Lung Treatment Modalities: Statistically Significant VMAT Advantages Over Fixed- Beam IMRT

    SciTech Connect

    Best, R; Harrell, A; Geesey, C; Libby, B; Wijesooriya, K

    2014-06-15

    Purpose: The purpose of this study is to inter-compare and find statistically significant differences between flattened field fixed-beam (FB) IMRT with flattening-filter free (FFF) volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) for stereotactic body radiation therapy SBRT. Methods: SBRT plans using FB IMRT and FFF VMAT were generated for fifteen SBRT lung patients using 6 MV beams. For each patient, both IMRT and VMAT plans were created for comparison. Plans were generated utilizing RTOG 0915 (peripheral, 10 patients) and RTOG 0813 (medial, 5 patients) lung protocols. Target dose, critical structure dose, and treatment time were compared and tested for statistical significance. Parameters of interest included prescription isodose surface coverage, target dose heterogeneity, high dose spillage (location and volume), low dose spillage (location and volume), lung dose spillage, and critical structure maximum- and volumetric-dose limits. Results: For all criteria, we found equivalent or higher conformality with VMAT plans as well as reduced critical structure doses. Several differences passed a Student's t-test of significance: VMAT reduced the high dose spillage, evaluated with conformality index (CI), by an average of 9.4%±15.1% (p=0.030) compared to IMRT. VMAT plans reduced the lung volume receiving 20 Gy by 16.2%±15.0% (p=0.016) compared with IMRT. For the RTOG 0915 peripheral lesions, the volumes of lung receiving 12.4 Gy and 11.6 Gy were reduced by 27.0%±13.8% and 27.5%±12.6% (for both, p<0.001) in VMAT plans. Of the 26 protocol pass/fail criteria, VMAT plans were able to achieve an average of 0.2±0.7 (p=0.026) more constraints than the IMRT plans. Conclusions: FFF VMAT has dosimetric advantages over fixed beam IMRT for lung SBRT. Significant advantages included increased dose conformity, and reduced organs-at-risk doses. The overall improvements in terms of protocol pass/fail criteria were more modest and will require more patient data to establish difference

  9. [Conclusions. The precautionary principle: its advantages and risks].

    PubMed

    Tubiana, M

    2000-01-01

    The proposed extension to health of the precautionary principle is the reaction to two social demands: the desire for greater health safety and for more transparency in the decision making process by associating the public. In medical care, all decisions are based on the balance between cost (dangers induced by the treatment) and benefit (the therapeutic effect). It is as dangerous to overestimate the cost, in other words the risks, as it is to underestimate them. The same problem is encountered in public health. If a vaccination is to be prescribed, the beneficial effects must outweigh the risks; however, these risks are inevitable and have been known to exist since the 18th century, but they have been accepted for the public good. It takes courage to make a vaccination mandatory because those who benefit from it will never know, while those who suffer from its ill effects could take legal action. In order to counter accusations, an evaluation must be made beforehand of the risks and benefits, which underlines the important role of expert opinion. Within the framework of the precautionary principle, actions cannot be taken in ignorance and, at the very least, plausible estimations must be made. The analysis of several recent events (contaminated blood, BSE, growth hormone and Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease) shows that the precautionary principle would have had a very limited impact and that only once there was sufficient knowledge was action made possible. The same is true concerning current debates (the possible risks associated with electromagnetic fields, mobile phones and radon); in these three cases, no country in the world has invoked the precautionary principle, but rather the priority has been given to research. The public understands quite readily the cost/benefit relationship. In the case of oral contraceptives, or hormone replacement therapy the public was aware of their possible health risks but judged that the advantages outweighed the risks. The

  10. [Conclusions. The precautionary principle: its advantages and risks].

    PubMed

    Tubiana, M

    2000-01-01

    The proposed extension to health of the precautionary principle is the reaction to two social demands: the desire for greater health safety and for more transparency in the decision making process by associating the public. In medical care, all decisions are based on the balance between cost (dangers induced by the treatment) and benefit (the therapeutic effect). It is as dangerous to overestimate the cost, in other words the risks, as it is to underestimate them. The same problem is encountered in public health. If a vaccination is to be prescribed, the beneficial effects must outweigh the risks; however, these risks are inevitable and have been known to exist since the 18th century, but they have been accepted for the public good. It takes courage to make a vaccination mandatory because those who benefit from it will never know, while those who suffer from its ill effects could take legal action. In order to counter accusations, an evaluation must be made beforehand of the risks and benefits, which underlines the important role of expert opinion. Within the framework of the precautionary principle, actions cannot be taken in ignorance and, at the very least, plausible estimations must be made. The analysis of several recent events (contaminated blood, BSE, growth hormone and Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease) shows that the precautionary principle would have had a very limited impact and that only once there was sufficient knowledge was action made possible. The same is true concerning current debates (the possible risks associated with electromagnetic fields, mobile phones and radon); in these three cases, no country in the world has invoked the precautionary principle, but rather the priority has been given to research. The public understands quite readily the cost/benefit relationship. In the case of oral contraceptives, or hormone replacement therapy the public was aware of their possible health risks but judged that the advantages outweighed the risks. The

  11. Mispricing in the medicare advantage risk adjustment model.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jing; Ellis, Randall P; Toro, Katherine H; Ash, Arlene S

    2015-01-01

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) implemented hierarchical condition category (HCC) models in 2004 to adjust payments to Medicare Advantage (MA) plans to reflect enrollees' expected health care costs. We use Verisk Health's diagnostic cost group (DxCG) Medicare models, refined "descendants" of the same HCC framework with 189 comprehensive clinical categories available to CMS in 2004, to reveal 2 mispricing errors resulting from CMS' implementation. One comes from ignoring all diagnostic information for "new enrollees" (those with less than 12 months of prior claims). Another comes from continuing to use the simplified models that were originally adopted in response to assertions from some capitated health plans that submitting the claims-like data that facilitate richer models was too burdensome. Even the main CMS model being used in 2014 recognizes only 79 condition categories, excluding many diagnoses and merging conditions with somewhat heterogeneous costs. Omitted conditions are typically lower cost or "vague" and not easily audited from simplified data submissions. In contrast, DxCG Medicare models use a comprehensive, 394-HCC classification system. Applying both models to Medicare's 2010-2011 fee-for-service 5% sample, we find mispricing and lower predictive accuracy for the CMS implementation. For example, in 2010, 13% of beneficiaries had at least 1 higher cost DxCG-recognized condition but no CMS-recognized condition; their 2011 actual costs averaged US$6628, almost one-third more than the CMS model prediction. As MA plans must now supply encounter data, CMS should consider using more refined and comprehensive (DxCG-like) models.

  12. Organic foods: health and environmental advantages and disadvantages.

    PubMed

    Forman, Joel; Silverstein, Janet

    2012-11-01

    The US market for organic foods has grown from $3.5 billion in 1996 to $28.6 billion in 2010, according to the Organic Trade Association. Organic products are now sold in specialty stores and conventional supermarkets. Organic products contain numerous marketing claims and terms, only some of which are standardized and regulated. In terms of health advantages, organic diets have been convincingly demonstrated to expose consumers to fewer pesticides associated with human disease. Organic farming has been demonstrated to have less environmental impact than conventional approaches. However, current evidence does not support any meaningful nutritional benefits or deficits from eating organic compared with conventionally grown foods, and there are no well-powered human studies that directly demonstrate health benefits or disease protection as a result of consuming an organic diet. Studies also have not demonstrated any detrimental or disease-promoting effects from an organic diet. Although organic foods regularly command a significant price premium, well-designed farming studies demonstrate that costs can be competitive and yields comparable to those of conventional farming techniques. Pediatricians should incorporate this evidence when discussing the health and environmental impact of organic foods and organic farming while continuing to encourage all patients and their families to attain optimal nutrition and dietary variety consistent with the US Department of Agriculture's MyPlate recommendations. This clinical report reviews the health and environmental issues related to organic food production and consumption. It defines the term "organic," reviews organic food-labeling standards, describes organic and conventional farming practices, and explores the cost and environmental implications of organic production techniques. It examines the evidence available on nutritional quality and production contaminants in conventionally produced and organic foods. Finally, this

  13. On the duration and intensity of cumulative advantage competitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Bo; Sun, Liyuan; Figueiredo, Daniel R.; Ribeiro, Bruno; Towsley, Don

    2015-11-01

    Network growth can be framed as a competition for edges among nodes in the network. As with various other social and physical systems, skill (fitness) and luck (random chance) act as fundamental forces driving competition dynamics. In the context of networks, cumulative advantage (CA)—the rich-get-richer effect—is seen as a driving principle governing the edge accumulation process. However, competitions coupled with CA exhibit non-trivial behavior and little is formally known about duration and intensity of CA competitions. By isolating two nodes in an ideal CA competition, we provide a mathematical understanding of how CA exacerbates the role of luck in detriment of skill. We show, for instance, that when nodes start with few edges, an early stroke of luck can place the less skilled in the lead for an extremely long period of time, a phenomenon we call ‘struggle of the fittest’. We prove that duration of a simple skill and luck competition model exhibit power-law tails when CA is present, regardless of skill difference, which is in sharp contrast to the exponential tails when fitness is distinct but CA is absent. We also prove that competition intensity is always upper bounded by an exponential tail, irrespective of CA and skills. Thus, CA competitions can be extremely long (infinite mean, depending on fitness ratio) but almost never very intense. The theoretical results are corroborated by extensive numerical simulations. Our findings have important implications to competitions not only among nodes in networks but also in contexts that leverage socio-physical models embodying CA competitions.

  14. Advantages of GPU technology in DFT calculations of intercalated graphene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pešić, J.; Gajić, R.

    2014-09-01

    Over the past few years, the expansion of general-purpose graphic-processing unit (GPGPU) technology has had a great impact on computational science. GPGPU is the utilization of a graphics-processing unit (GPU) to perform calculations in applications usually handled by the central processing unit (CPU). Use of GPGPUs as a way to increase computational power in the material sciences has significantly decreased computational costs in already highly demanding calculations. A level of the acceleration and parallelization depends on the problem itself. Some problems can benefit from GPU acceleration and parallelization, such as the finite-difference time-domain algorithm (FTDT) and density-functional theory (DFT), while others cannot take advantage of these modern technologies. A number of GPU-supported applications had emerged in the past several years (www.nvidia.com/object/gpu-applications.html). Quantum Espresso (QE) is reported as an integrated suite of open source computer codes for electronic-structure calculations and materials modeling at the nano-scale. It is based on DFT, the use of a plane-waves basis and a pseudopotential approach. Since the QE 5.0 version, it has been implemented as a plug-in component for standard QE packages that allows exploiting the capabilities of Nvidia GPU graphic cards (www.qe-forge.org/gf/proj). In this study, we have examined the impact of the usage of GPU acceleration and parallelization on the numerical performance of DFT calculations. Graphene has been attracting attention worldwide and has already shown some remarkable properties. We have studied an intercalated graphene, using the QE package PHonon, which employs GPU. The term ‘intercalation’ refers to a process whereby foreign adatoms are inserted onto a graphene lattice. In addition, by intercalating different atoms between graphene layers, it is possible to tune their physical properties. Our experiments have shown there are benefits from using GPUs, and we reached an

  15. Training-dependent cognitive advantage is suppressed at high altitude.

    PubMed

    Li, Peng; Zhang, Gang; You, Hai-Yan; Zheng, Ran; Gao, Yu-Qi

    2012-06-25

    Ascent to high altitude is associated with decreases in cognitive function and work performance as a result of hypoxia. Some workers with special jobs typically undergo intensive mental training because they are expected to be agile, stable and error-free in their job performance. The purpose of this study was to determine the risk to cognitive function acquired from training following hypoxic exposure. The results of WHO neurobehavioral core tests battery (WHO-NCTB) and Raven's standard progressive matrices (RSPM) tests of a group of 54 highly trained military operators were compared with those of 51 non-trained ordinary people and were investigated at sea level and on the fifth day after arrival at high altitudes (3900m). Meanwhile, the plasma levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), interleukin 1β (IL-1β) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) were examined. The result showed that at sea level, the trained group exhibited significantly better performance on neurobehavioral and RSPM tests. At high altitude, both groups had decreased accuracy in most cognitive tests and took longer to finish them. More importantly, the highly trained subjects showed more substantial declines than the non-trained subjects in visual reaction accuracy, auditory reaction speed, digit symbol scores, ability to report correct dots in a pursuit aiming test and total RSPM scores. This means that the training-dependent cognitive advantages in these areas were suppressed at high altitudes. The above phenomenon maybe associated with decreased BDNF and elevated inflammatory factor during hypoxia, and other mechanisms could not be excluded.

  16. Internet Usage and Competitive Advantage: The Impact of the Internet on an Old Economy Industry in Spain.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    del Aguila Obra, Ana Rosa; Bruque Camara, Sebastian; Padilla Melendez, Antonio

    2002-01-01

    Considers whether Internet technologies have led to competitive advantage for companies operating in traditional industries. Highlights include a literature review; using the resource-based view (RBV) of firms as a theoretical framework for an empirical investigation; and a survey that investigated Internet technologies and competitive advantage…

  17. Advantages, limitations, and diagnostic accuracy of photoscreeners in early detection of amblyopia: a review

    PubMed Central

    Sanchez, Irene; Ortiz-Toquero, Sara; Martin, Raul; de Juan, Victoria

    2016-01-01

    Amblyopia detection is important to ensure proper visual development and avoid permanent decrease of visual acuity. This condition does not produce symptoms, so it is difficult to diagnose if a vision problem actually exists. However, because amblyopia treatment is limited by age, early diagnosis is of paramount relevance. Traditional vision screening (conducted in <3 years) is related with difficulty in getting cooperation from a subject to conduct the eye exam, so accurate objective methods to improve amblyopia detection are necessary. Handheld devices used for photoscreening or autorefraction could offer advantages to improve amblyopia screening because they reduce exploration time to just few seconds, no subject collaboration is needed, and they provide objective information. The purpose of this review is to summarize the main functions and clinical applicability of commercially available devices for early detection of amblyopia and to describe their differences, advantages, and limitations. Although the studies reviewed are heterogeneous (due to wide differences in referral criteria, use of different risk factors, different types of samples studied, etc), these devices provide objective measures in a quick and objective way with a simple outcome report: retest, pass, or refer. However, due to major limitations, these devices are not recommended, and their use in clinical practice is limited. PMID:27555744

  18. Advantages, limitations, and diagnostic accuracy of photoscreeners in early detection of amblyopia: a review.

    PubMed

    Sanchez, Irene; Ortiz-Toquero, Sara; Martin, Raul; de Juan, Victoria

    2016-01-01

    Amblyopia detection is important to ensure proper visual development and avoid permanent decrease of visual acuity. This condition does not produce symptoms, so it is difficult to diagnose if a vision problem actually exists. However, because amblyopia treatment is limited by age, early diagnosis is of paramount relevance. Traditional vision screening (conducted in <3 years) is related with difficulty in getting cooperation from a subject to conduct the eye exam, so accurate objective methods to improve amblyopia detection are necessary. Handheld devices used for photoscreening or autorefraction could offer advantages to improve amblyopia screening because they reduce exploration time to just few seconds, no subject collaboration is needed, and they provide objective information. The purpose of this review is to summarize the main functions and clinical applicability of commercially available devices for early detection of amblyopia and to describe their differences, advantages, and limitations. Although the studies reviewed are heterogeneous (due to wide differences in referral criteria, use of different risk factors, different types of samples studied, etc), these devices provide objective measures in a quick and objective way with a simple outcome report: retest, pass, or refer. However, due to major limitations, these devices are not recommended, and their use in clinical practice is limited. PMID:27555744

  19. Advantages and limits of hemorrhoidal dearterialization in the treatment of symptomatic hemorrhoids

    PubMed Central

    Giamundo, Paolo

    2016-01-01

    In the last two decades, hemorrhoidal dearterialization has become universally accepted as a treatment option for symptomatic hemorrhoids. The rationale for this procedure is based on the assumption that arterial blood overflow is mainly responsible for dilatation of the hemorrhoidal plexus due to the absence of capillary interposition between the arterial and venous systems within the anal canal. Dearterialization, with either suture ligation (Doppler-guided hemorrhoid artery ligation/transanal hemorrhoidal dearterialization) or laser (hemorrhoidal laser procedure), may be successfully performed alone or with mucopexy. Although the added value of Doppler-guidance in association with dearterialization has recently been challenged, this imaging method still plays an important role in localizing hemorrhoidal arteries and, therefore, minimizing the effect of anatomic variation among patients. However, it is important to employ the correct Doppler transducer. Some Doppler transducers may not easily detect superficial arteries due to inadequate frequency settings. All techniques of dearterialization have the advantage of preserving the anatomy and physiology of the anal canal, when compared to other surgical treatments for hemorrhoids. This advantage cannot be underestimated as impaired anal function, including fecal incontinence and other defecation disorders, may occur following surgical treatment for hemorrhoids. Furthermore, this potentially devastating problem can occur in patients of all ages, including younger patients. PMID:26843909

  20. Advantages and limits of hemorrhoidal dearterialization in the treatment of symptomatic hemorrhoids.

    PubMed

    Giamundo, Paolo

    2016-01-27

    In the last two decades, hemorrhoidal dearterialization has become universally accepted as a treatment option for symptomatic hemorrhoids. The rationale for this procedure is based on the assumption that arterial blood overflow is mainly responsible for dilatation of the hemorrhoidal plexus due to the absence of capillary interposition between the arterial and venous systems within the anal canal. Dearterialization, with either suture ligation (Doppler-guided hemorrhoid artery ligation/transanal hemorrhoidal dearterialization) or laser (hemorrhoidal laser procedure), may be successfully performed alone or with mucopexy. Although the added value of Doppler-guidance in association with dearterialization has recently been challenged, this imaging method still plays an important role in localizing hemorrhoidal arteries and, therefore, minimizing the effect of anatomic variation among patients. However, it is important to employ the correct Doppler transducer. Some Doppler transducers may not easily detect superficial arteries due to inadequate frequency settings. All techniques of dearterialization have the advantage of preserving the anatomy and physiology of the anal canal, when compared to other surgical treatments for hemorrhoids. This advantage cannot be underestimated as impaired anal function, including fecal incontinence and other defecation disorders, may occur following surgical treatment for hemorrhoids. Furthermore, this potentially devastating problem can occur in patients of all ages, including younger patients.

  1. Comparative advantages of new drugs: French Pharmacoeconomic Committee is not sufficiently demanding.

    PubMed

    2015-12-01

    In France, the Pharmacoeconomic Committee (Commission de la Transparence) is responsible for assessing the therapeutic value of new drugs and their therapeutic advantages over existing therapies. These assessments are used in particular by public authorities to guide reimbursement policy, to decide whether to approve the drug's use in hospitals and other healthcare institutions, and to negotiate its price. Prescrire evaluates the therapeutic advantages of new drugs marketed in France (including products not reimbursed by the national health insurance system) and new indications, to help prescribers and patients make informed treatment choices. A study comparing the Pharmacoeconomic Committee's ratings versus Prescrire's ratings, issued during the period 2009-2014 on a total of more than 300 new drugs and indications, has confirmed the results of a comparison carried out in 2004: overall, the French Pharmacoeconomic Committee is less demanding than Prescrire. The Pharmacoeconomic Committee is less concerned with ease of use, and more often considers positively drugs approved for situations in which there is a pressing need for better treatments, even when their efficacy is slight and poorly established. Prescrire's assessments are based on explicit procedures: a literature search; analysis of the evidence for efficacy; analysis of adverse effects; systematic consideration of treatment convenience, including packaging quality; and a systematic rating system. In addition, our ratings are free of any influence from the pharmaceutical industry. PMID:26788583

  2. Comparative advantages of new drugs: French Pharmacoeconomic Committee is not sufficiently demanding.

    PubMed

    2015-12-01

    In France, the Pharmacoeconomic Committee (Commission de la Transparence) is responsible for assessing the therapeutic value of new drugs and their therapeutic advantages over existing therapies. These assessments are used in particular by public authorities to guide reimbursement policy, to decide whether to approve the drug's use in hospitals and other healthcare institutions, and to negotiate its price. Prescrire evaluates the therapeutic advantages of new drugs marketed in France (including products not reimbursed by the national health insurance system) and new indications, to help prescribers and patients make informed treatment choices. A study comparing the Pharmacoeconomic Committee's ratings versus Prescrire's ratings, issued during the period 2009-2014 on a total of more than 300 new drugs and indications, has confirmed the results of a comparison carried out in 2004: overall, the French Pharmacoeconomic Committee is less demanding than Prescrire. The Pharmacoeconomic Committee is less concerned with ease of use, and more often considers positively drugs approved for situations in which there is a pressing need for better treatments, even when their efficacy is slight and poorly established. Prescrire's assessments are based on explicit procedures: a literature search; analysis of the evidence for efficacy; analysis of adverse effects; systematic consideration of treatment convenience, including packaging quality; and a systematic rating system. In addition, our ratings are free of any influence from the pharmaceutical industry.

  3. Advantages and disadvantages of a municipal solid waste collection service for citizens of Hanoi City, Vietnam.

    PubMed

    Kawai, Kosuke; Osako, Masahiro

    2013-03-01

    Governments of municipalities in Vietnam experiencing dynamic economic growth and dramatic population increases have been struggling to manage increased amounts of municipal solid waste (MSW). This study aimed to clarify the advantages and disadvantages of the current MSW collection service for citizens of the four central districts of Hanoi city, Vietnam, by conducting interviews with 200 households and 200 business entities regarding their satisfaction with the service. The survey results showed that Hanoi city provides an economical collection service with sufficient frequency and at appropriate times for citizens. However, a number of citizens complained about unsanitary conditions in the area surrounding their residence. Business entities had sufficient motivation to sell recyclable waste (RW) to the informal sector, not only to derive revenue from selling RW, but also to reduce the amount of MSW generated, thus reducing the MSW collection fee. Households were not motivated to reduce MSW by selling RW to the informal sector because they paid a fixed collection fee. As a result, an improvement in living standards in the near future is expected to contribute to increasing the amount of MSW generated from households.

  4. Environmental Sustainability - Including Land and Water Use

    EPA Science Inventory

    Assessments of environmental sustainability can be conducted in many ways with one of the most quantitative methods including Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA). While historically LCIA has included a comprehensive list of impact categories including: ozone depletion, global c...

  5. Advantages of the coherent antistokes Raman scattering (CARS) in environmental monitoring and industrial process control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voss, Eberhard; de Vries, Thorsten; Darpel, H.; Anders, Angelika

    1999-02-01

    The objective of this investigation was to develop a fast method for the in-situ characterization of chemicals solved in water based on Coherent Antistokes Raman Scattering (CARS). In order to test the potential of CARS as a tool for the in-situ spectroscopy scanning and multiplex CARS techniques were investigated. Polarization CARS (PCARS) was used to reduce the nonvibrational resonant signal generated by the electron cloud of the solvent molecules. The spectra of some alcohols and pollutants such as pyridine, nitrate and sulfate were investigated. Computer simulations were applied for the evaluation of the CARS spectra. The most evident advantage of CARS in comparison with other Raman methods is the very short time to achieve a spectrum. The shortest time to get a spectrum is limited by the length of the laser pulse (e.g. 5 ns). In addition no sample preparation is necessary.

  6. An endogenous accelerator for viral gene expression confers a fitness advantage.

    PubMed

    Teng, Melissa W; Bolovan-Fritts, Cynthia; Dar, Roy D; Womack, Andrew; Simpson, Michael L; Shenk, Thomas; Weinberger, Leor S

    2012-12-21

    Many signaling circuits face a fundamental tradeoff between accelerating their response speed while maintaining final levels below a cytotoxic threshold. Here, we describe a transcriptional circuitry that dynamically converts signaling inputs into faster rates without amplifying final equilibrium levels. Using time-lapse microscopy, we find that transcriptional activators accelerate human cytomegalovirus (CMV) gene expression in single cells without amplifying steady-state expression levels, and this acceleration generates a significant replication advantage. We map the accelerator to a highly self-cooperative transcriptional negative-feedback loop (Hill coefficient ∼7) generated by homomultimerization of the virus's essential transactivator protein IE2 at nuclear PML bodies. Eliminating the IE2-accelerator circuit reduces transcriptional strength through mislocalization of incoming viral genomes away from PML bodies and carries a heavy fitness cost. In general, accelerators may provide a mechanism for signal-transduction circuits to respond quickly to external signals without increasing steady-state levels of potentially cytotoxic molecules.

  7. The advantages of using a Lucky Imaging camera for observations of microlensing events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sajadian, Sedighe; Rahvar, Sohrab; Dominik, Martin; Hundertmark, Markus

    2016-05-01

    In this work, we study the advantages of using a Lucky Imaging camera for the observations of potential planetary microlensing events. Our aim is to reduce the blending effect and enhance exoplanet signals in binary lensing systems composed of an exoplanet and the corresponding parent star. We simulate planetary microlensing light curves based on present microlensing surveys and follow-up telescopes where one of them is equipped with a Lucky Imaging camera. This camera is used at the Danish 1.54-m follow-up telescope. Using a specific observational strategy, for an Earth-mass planet in the resonance regime, where the detection probability in crowded fields is smaller, Lucky Imaging observations improve the detection efficiency which reaches 2 per cent. Given the difficulty of detecting the signal of an Earth-mass planet in crowded-field imaging even in the resonance regime with conventional cameras, we show that Lucky Imaging can substantially improve the detection efficiency.

  8. Placebo effect in osteoarthritis: Why not use it to our advantage?

    PubMed Central

    de Campos, Gustavo C

    2015-01-01

    Osteoarthritis is a major cause of pain and reduced quality of life in the elderly, as well as a major economic burden. Unfortunately, there is no currently effective therapeutic strategy to prevent the progression of Osteoarthritis, and its treatment poses a great challenge to the medical community. Most of the treatment modalities currently available for osteoarthritis have small to moderate effect sizes, according to main meta-analyses and treatment guidelines. On the other hand, literature has demonstrated that placebo is considerably effective. The present article discusses the history of placebo effect and its scientific evidence, comments on ethical issues and provides insights about how it may be used to our advantage when treating osteoarthritic patients. PMID:26085983

  9. Alcohol medications development: advantages and caveats of government/academia collaborating with the pharmaceutical industry.

    PubMed

    Litten, Raye Z; Ryan, Megan; Falk, Daniel; Fertig, Joanne

    2014-05-01

    The process of developing pharmacological treatments for alcohol use disorder is notoriously complex and challenging. The path to market is long, costly, and inefficient. One way of expediting and reducing the drug development process is through collaborations-building partnerships among government, academia, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, healthcare organizations and advocacy groups, and the patients (end consumers) themselves. By forging collaborations, particularly with pharmaceutical companies, the alcohol treatment field stands to reap benefits in generating new medications for use in mainstream treatment settings. At the same time, there are certain caveats that should be considered, particularly by academic researchers, before entering into such partnerships. This commentary examines the advantages and caveats of government and academia collaborations with pharmaceutical companies.

  10. Nanoparticles labeled with Positron Emitting Nuclides: Advantages, Methods, and Applications

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yongjian; Welch, Michael J.

    2012-01-01

    Over the past decade, positron emitter labeled nanoparticles have been widely used in and substantially improved for a range of diagnostic biomedical research. However, given growing interest in personalized medicine and translational research, a major challenge in the field will be to develop disease specific nanoprobes with facile and robust radiolabeling strategies and that provide imaging stability, enhanced sensitivity for disease early stage detection, optimized in vivo pharmacokinetics for reduced non-specific organ uptake, and improved targeting for elevated efficacy. This review briefly summarizes the major applications of nanoparticles labeled with positron emitters for cardiovascular imaging, lung diagnosis and tumor theranostics. PMID:22242601

  11. Evolutionary advantage via common action of recombination and neutrality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saakian, David B.; Hu, Chin-Kun

    2013-11-01

    We investigate evolution models with recombination and neutrality. We consider the Crow-Kimura (parallel) mutation-selection model with the neutral fitness landscape, in which there is a central peak with high fitness A, and some of 1-point mutants have the same high fitness A, while the fitness of other sequences is 0. We find that the effect of recombination and neutrality depends on the concrete version of both neutrality and recombination. We consider three versions of neutrality: (a) all the nearest neighbor sequences of the peak sequence have the same high fitness A; (b) all the l-point mutations in a piece of genome of length l≥1 are neutral; (c) the neutral sequences are randomly distributed among the nearest neighbors of the peak sequences. We also consider three versions of recombination: (I) the simple horizontal gene transfer (HGT) of one nucleotide; (II) the exchange of a piece of genome of length l, HGT-l; (III) two-point crossover recombination (2CR). For the case of (a), the 2CR gives a rather strong contribution to the mean fitness, much stronger than that of HGT for a large genome length L. For the random distribution of neutral sequences there is a critical degree of neutrality νc, and for μ<μc and (μc-μ) is not large, the 2CR suppresses the mean fitness while HGT increases it; for ν much larger than νc, the 2CR and HGT-l increase the mean fitness larger than that of the HGT. We also consider the recombination in the case of smooth fitness landscapes. The recombination gives some advantage in the evolutionary dynamics, where recombination distinguishes clearly the mean-field-like evolutionary factors from the fluctuation-like ones. By contrast, mutations affect the mean-field-like and fluctuation-like factors similarly. Consequently, recombination can accelerate the non-mean-field (fluctuation) type dynamics without considerably affecting the mean-field-like factors.

  12. SU-E-J-21: Advantages of Ultra Fast Radiation Dose Delivering

    SciTech Connect

    Feng, Y

    2014-06-01

    Purpose: For delivering conformed dose to a moving tumor and sparing normal tissue, we presented an innovation that was combined a linear accelerator and a storage ring to generate ultra high dose rate. This innovation allows delivering prescribed dose to a moving target in such a short time period, for an example 0.1 second, during which the displacement of the target could be ignored. Methods: The advantages of this approach were evaluated based on normal tissue sparing, feasibility, accuracy, and time saving in clinical treatment. The target volume reduction with this innovation approach was demonstrated by analyzing the values of GTVs, ITVs, and PTVs obtained from 15 patients who had been diagnosed with malignant neoplasm of lung and treated with SBRT. The processes of SBRT treatment were investigated and advantages of this innovation in improving SBRT lung treatment were evaluated. Results: With the ultra-high dose rate, the target volumes could be reduced by ∼30% to 50%. The innovation combining with IGRT technique could deliver prescribed dose to moving target accurately with simpler procedures than that of adaptive approach. This new approach could reduce the time of guiding treatment by many times. The new technique make a new strategy became feasible that was to deliver the dose to a target when it moved to a desirable location, such as away from critical organs. Conclusion: Combining with IGRT technique, this innovation could significantly improve the accuracy to deliver dose to moving targets with a shorter time than conventional techniques. The innovation opens a door for new strategies to deliver dose to moving targets.

  13. Supply management: The next competitive advantage for utilities

    SciTech Connect

    Budd, S.; Heard, F.

    1996-08-01

    Almost three-quarters of the cost of operating a typical utility is attributable to supply management activities - planning, acquisition, handling, disposition, and payment for materials, services, and fuel. Reducing their costs can substantially improve one`s competitive position. Three performance indicators will be paramount in determining which utilities survive and prosper: (1) Price. Energy is a commodity. As such, the principal driver of market penetration in the new era of wholesale and retail wheeling will be price. Therefore, the determinant of success will be the ability to provide products and services to the marketplace at the lowest possible price. (2) Service quality. Beyond price, the most meaningful differentiation among energy delivery companies is in the perceived quality of services provided. Customer service and reliability will be the key means by which a provider differentiates itself, positively or negatively, from the competition. (3) Earnings growth. With the application of incentive regulation, earnings will be governed by a company`s ability to compete successfully in the market. This will place extreme pressure on utilities to enhance revenues - which is difficult in a mature market - and/or to reduce costs through productivity gains and process changes.

  14. Biological processing in oscillatory baffled reactors: operation, advantages and potential

    PubMed Central

    Abbott, M. S. R.; Harvey, A. P.; Perez, G. Valente; Theodorou, M. K.

    2013-01-01

    The development of efficient and commercially viable bioprocesses is essential for reducing the need for fossil-derived products. Increasingly, pharmaceuticals, fuel, health products and precursor compounds for plastics are being synthesized using bioprocessing routes as opposed to more traditional chemical technologies. Production vessels or reactors are required for synthesis of crude product before downstream processing for extraction and purification. Reactors are operated either in discrete batches or, preferably, continuously in order to reduce waste, cost and energy. This review describes the oscillatory baffled reactor (OBR), which, generally, has a niche application in performing ‘long’ processes in plug flow conditions, and so should be suitable for various bioprocesses. We report findings to suggest that OBRs could increase reaction rates for specific bioprocesses owing to low shear, good global mixing and enhanced mass transfer compared with conventional reactors. By maintaining geometrical and dynamic conditions, the technology has been proved to be easily scaled up and operated continuously, allowing laboratory-scale results to be easily transferred to industrial-sized processes. This is the first comprehensive review of bioprocessing using OBRs. The barriers facing industrial adoption of the technology are discussed alongside some suggested strategies to overcome these barriers. OBR technology could prove to be a major aid in the development of commercially viable and sustainable bioprocesses, essential for moving towards a greener future. PMID:24427509

  15. Biological processing in oscillatory baffled reactors: operation, advantages and potential.

    PubMed

    Abbott, M S R; Harvey, A P; Perez, G Valente; Theodorou, M K

    2013-02-01

    The development of efficient and commercially viable bioprocesses is essential for reducing the need for fossil-derived products. Increasingly, pharmaceuticals, fuel, health products and precursor compounds for plastics are being synthesized using bioprocessing routes as opposed to more traditional chemical technologies. Production vessels or reactors are required for synthesis of crude product before downstream processing for extraction and purification. Reactors are operated either in discrete batches or, preferably, continuously in order to reduce waste, cost and energy. This review describes the oscillatory baffled reactor (OBR), which, generally, has a niche application in performing 'long' processes in plug flow conditions, and so should be suitable for various bioprocesses. We report findings to suggest that OBRs could increase reaction rates for specific bioprocesses owing to low shear, good global mixing and enhanced mass transfer compared with conventional reactors. By maintaining geometrical and dynamic conditions, the technology has been proved to be easily scaled up and operated continuously, allowing laboratory-scale results to be easily transferred to industrial-sized processes. This is the first comprehensive review of bioprocessing using OBRs. The barriers facing industrial adoption of the technology are discussed alongside some suggested strategies to overcome these barriers. OBR technology could prove to be a major aid in the development of commercially viable and sustainable bioprocesses, essential for moving towards a greener future. PMID:24427509

  16. End-to-end imaging information rate advantages of various alternative communication systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rice, R. F.

    1982-01-01

    The efficiency of various deep space communication systems which are required to transmit both imaging and a typically error sensitive class of data called general science and engineering (gse) are compared. The approach jointly treats the imaging and gse transmission problems, allowing comparisons of systems which include various channel coding and data compression alternatives. Actual system comparisons include an advanced imaging communication system (AICS) which exhibits the rather significant advantages of sophisticated data compression coupled with powerful yet practical channel coding. For example, under certain conditions the improved AICS efficiency could provide as much as two orders of magnitude increase in imaging information rate compared to a single channel uncoded, uncompressed system while maintaining the same gse data rate in both systems. Additional details describing AICS compression and coding concepts as well as efforts to apply them are provided in support of the system analysis.

  17. Carbon offers advantages as implant material in human body

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benson, J.

    1969-01-01

    Because of such characteristics as high strength and long-term biocompatability, aerospace carbonaceous materials may be used as surgical implants to correct pathological conditions in the body resulting from disease or injury. Examples of possible medical uses include bone replacement, implantation splints and circulatory bypass implants.

  18. Sports and the Big6: The Information Advantage.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eisenberg, Mike

    1997-01-01

    Explores the connection between sports and the Big6 information problem-solving process and how sports provides an ideal setting for learning and teaching about the Big6. Topics include information aspects of baseball, football, soccer, basketball, figure skating, track and field, and golf; and the Big6 process applied to sports. (LRW)

  19. Intercultural Competence as a Competitive Advantage of Secondary School Graduates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karnyshev, A. D.; Kostin, A. K.

    2010-01-01

    Among the qualities of today's school graduate, the ones that are becoming more and more important are those that determine the ability to compete. These qualities include intercultural competence, which both researchers and practitioners all over the world acknowledge to be one of the most important characteristics of any citizen who engages in…

  20. Some Advantages of Controlling for False Discoveries in Multiple Comparisons.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, Valerie S. L.

    Multiple comparison procedures for controlling familywise Type I error and the false discovery rate are described and compared, including the traditional Bonferroni correction, a sequential (step-up) Bonferroni procedure (Hochberg, 1988), and a sequential false discovery rate procedure proposed by Benjamini and Hochberg (1995). Motivation for…

  1. Taking Advantage of Murder and Mayhem for Social Studies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harden, G. Daniel

    1991-01-01

    Suggests the use of key historical antisocial acts to teach social studies concepts as a means of arousing the interest of adolescents. Recommends overcoming initial sensationalism by shifting emphasis to more appropriate interests. Includes discussion of the Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy assassinations and the Rosenberg spy case. Suggests…

  2. Assessment of potential advantages of relevant ions for particle therapy: A model based study

    SciTech Connect

    Grün, Rebecca; Friedrich, Thomas; Krämer, Michael; Scholz, Michael; Zink, Klemens; Durante, Marco; Engenhart-Cabillic, Rita

    2015-02-15

    for carbon ions as compared to opposing fields. In contrast, for protons, the PER{sub BIO} is almost independent on the field configuration. Concerning the artificial lateral OAR, the volume receiving 20% of the prescribed RBE-weighted dose (V20) was reduced by over 35% using helium ions and by over 40% using carbon ions compared to protons. The analysis of the patient plan showed that protons, helium, and carbon ions are similar in terms of target coverage whereas the dose to the surrounding tissue is increasing from carbon ions toward protons. The mean dose to the brain stem can be reduced by more than 55% when using helium ions and by further 25% when using carbon ions instead of protons. Conclusions: The comparison of the PER{sub RBE} and PER{sub PHY} {sub S} of the three ion types suggests a strong dependence of the advantages of the three ions on the dose-level, tissue type, and field configuration. In terms of conformity, i.e., dose to the normal tissue, a clear gain is expected using carbon or helium ions compared to protons.

  3. Does inversion abolish the left chimeric face processing advantage?

    PubMed

    Butler, Stephen H; Harvey, Monika

    2005-12-19

    Experiments using chimeric stimuli have shown that the right hemisphere is more influential in processing facial information. Here, again, we found clear evidence that study participants used the information from the left side of the face to inform their gender decisions when chimeric male/female, female/male stimuli were presented. Most interestingly though, this effect was not only present for upright faces but also for inverted (flipped) faces (although the effect was significantly reduced). We propose that the chimeric bias effects found here argue against the idea that inversion destroys the right hemisphere superiority for faces. If this was indeed the case, flipping the chimeric faces should have resulted in a loss of the left face bias. This was not the case. PMID:16317340

  4. Advantages of Photon Counting Detectors for Terahertz Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuo, Hiroshi; Ezawa, Hajime

    2016-08-01

    For astronomical observation at terahertz frequencies, a variety of cryogenic detector technologies are being developed to achieve background-limited observation from space, where a noise equivalent power (NEP) of less than 10^{-18} W/Hz^{0.5} is often required. When each photon signal is resolved in time, the requirements on NEP are reduced and 1 ns time resolution corresponds to an NEP of approximately 10^{-17} W/Hz^{0.5} at THz frequencies. Furthermore, fast photon counting detectors have a high dynamic range to observe bright terahertz sources such as stars and active galactic nuclei. Applications of photon counting detector are discussed for cosmic microwave background and photon counting terahertz interferometry.

  5. Vegetarianism: advantages and drawbacks in patients with chronic kidney diseases.

    PubMed

    Chauveau, Philippe; Combe, Christian; Fouque, Denis; Aparicio, Michel

    2013-11-01

    Vegetarian diet is a very old practice that is liable to confer some health benefits. Recent studies have demonstrated that modification of the dietary pattern with a reduction of animal protein intake and increased consumption of plant-based foods could influence cardiovascular risk profile and mortality rate. Moreover, phosphate bioavailability from plant proteins is reduced. These statements could lead to some benefits for chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients. This review summarizes the characteristics and benefits of vegetarian diets in the general population and the potential beneficial effects of such a diet on phosphate balance, insulin sensitivity, and the control of metabolic acidosis in CKD patients. Potential drawbacks exist when a vegetarian diet is associated with protein intake that is too restrictive and/or insufficient energy intake, justifying an early and regular nutritional follow-up jointly assumed by a nephrologist and a renal dietitian.

  6. Advantageous Use of Hypnosis in a Case of Psychogenic Vomiting.

    PubMed

    Chandrashekhar, Roopa

    2016-04-01

    This case study describes in detail the role of hypnosis in treatment of a case of psychogenic vomiting. The patient, a 60-yearold woman, had been suffering for 9 months from episodes of vomiting which resulted in weight loss, dehydration, and hypokalemia. She was a conscientious woman with high standards of behavior, which did not allow an expression of the extreme hostility she felt toward her daughter-in-law. Hypnotherapeutic sessions reduced her anxiety, restored her sleep, improved mood, and helped deepen rapport, all of which created the ideal setting for Gestalt's empty chair technique. Integrating hypnosis greatly enhanced the quality of the empty chair dialogue, which by bringing about a shift in the patient's emotions from hostility to sympathy, facilitated recovery. PMID:27003484

  7. Advantages of Sabatier for extended duration manned missions.

    PubMed

    Murdoch, K; Carrasquillo, R; O'Donnell, P; Fort, J

    1998-01-01

    As manned space missions become longer and go farther away (i.e., Mars missions), the cost of resupply missions becomes substantial and even impractical. In order to reduce the logistics penalty for air revitalization in manned spacecraft, breathing oxygen (O2) must be recovered from metabolic carbon dioxide (CO2). The Sabatier CO2 reduction system is a key component of an integrated air revitalization system. The heart of the Sabatier system is the chemical catalyst bed that reacts carbon dioxide with hydrogen to form methane and water. Product water from a Sabatier subsystem would positively affect the current International Space Station (ISS) water balance and Mars missions would also benefit from the use of product methane as a propellant. This article focuses on the potential benefits of using the Sabatier subsystem for ISS and potential Mars mission applications. PMID:11871449

  8. Reducing Field Distortion in Magnetic Resonance Imaging

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eom, Byeong Ho; Penanen, Konstantin; Hahn, Inseob

    2010-01-01

    A concept for a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) system that would utilize a relatively weak magnetic field provides for several design features that differ significantly from the corresponding features of conventional MRI systems. Notable among these features are a magnetic-field configuration that reduces (relative to the conventional configuration) distortion and blurring of the image, the use of a superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) magnetometer as the detector, and an imaging procedure suited for the unconventional field configuration and sensor. In a typical application of MRI, a radio-frequency pulse is used to excite precession of the magnetic moments of protons in an applied magnetic field, and the decaying precession is detected for a short time following the pulse. The precession occurs at a resonance frequency proportional to the strengths of the magnetic field and the proton magnetic moment. The magnetic field is configured to vary with position in a known way; hence, by virtue of the aforesaid proportionality, the resonance frequency varies with position in a known way. In other words, position is encoded as resonance frequency. MRI using magnetic fields weaker than those of conventional MRI offers several advantages, including cheaper and smaller equipment, greater compatibility with metallic objects, and higher image quality because of low susceptibility distortion and enhanced spin-lattice-relaxation- time contrast. SQUID MRI is being developed into a practical MRI method for applied magnetic flux densities of the order of only 100 T

  9. Analysis Of Medicare Advantage HMOs compared with traditional Medicare shows lower use of many services during 2003-09.

    PubMed

    Landon, Bruce E; Zaslavsky, Alan M; Saunders, Robert C; Pawlson, L Gregory; Newhouse, Joseph P; Ayanian, John Z

    2012-12-01

    Enrollment in Medicare Advantage, the managed care program for Medicare beneficiaries, has grown rapidly, from 4.6 million enrollees in 2003 to 12.8 million by 2012, or 27 percent of all current Medicare beneficiaries. We analyzed utilization patterns of enrollees in Medicare Advantage health maintenance organization (HMO) plans compared to matched samples of people in traditional Medicare during 2003-09, to ascertain whether the HMO enrollees demonstrated different levels of use of services, which can be a hallmark of more integrated care. We found that utilization rates in some major categories, including emergency departments and ambulatory surgery or procedures, generally were 20-30 percent lower in Medicare Advantage HMOs in all years. Medicare Advantage HMO enrollees initially had lower rates of ambulatory visits and hospitalizations, although these rates converged by 2008; they also received about 10 percent fewer hip or knee replacements. In contrast, HMO enrollees underwent more coronary bypass surgery than patients in traditional Medicare. These findings suggest that overall, Medicare Advantage HMO enrollees might use fewer services and be experiencing more appropriate use of services than enrollees in traditional Medicare.

  10. Pre-competition hormonal and psychological levels of elite hockey players: relationship to the "home advantage".

    PubMed

    Carré, Justin; Muir, Cameron; Belanger, Joey; Putnam, Susan K

    2006-10-30

    The home advantage is a robust phenomenon that occurs in the world of amateur and professional sport. Athletic teams have been shown to win significantly more games in their home venue as compared to their opponents' venue. Studies have suggested that the home advantage may be related to familiarity with the facility, increased crowd density and even pre-competition hormonal levels. The present study investigated pre-competition physiological and psychological states of elite hockey players in the home and away venues. Physiological measures included salivary cortisol and testosterone, which were assessed using enzyme immunoassays. In addition, pre-competition psychological states were assessed using the Competitive State Anxiety Inventory-2. Physiological measures indicated that the players had significantly higher pre-game testosterone when playing in their home venue as compared to their opponents' venue (t(13)=2.29, p=0.04); however, this difference was not due to a pre-game rise in testosterone while competing at home. Furthermore, players showed a trend toward higher pre-game cortisol when playing in their home venue (t(13)=1.96, p=0.07). Psychological measures indicated that players were more self-confident when playing in their home venue (t(13)=2.8, p=0.008) and also had higher somatic (t(13)=2.3, p=0.02) and cognitive anxiety (t(13)=1.87, p=0.04) when playing in their opponents' venue. The present study supports the notion that there are differences in pre-competition hormonal and psychological states that may play a key role in the "home advantage".

  11. No Childhood Advantage in the Acquisition of Skill in Using an Artificial Language Rule

    PubMed Central

    Ferman, Sara; Karni, Avi

    2010-01-01

    A leading notion is that language skill acquisition declines between childhood and adulthood. While several lines of evidence indicate that declarative (“what”, explicit) memory undergoes maturation, it is commonly assumed that procedural (“how-to”, implicit) memory, in children, is well established. The language superiority of children has been ascribed to the childhood reliance on implicit learning. Here we show that when 8-year-olds, 12-year-olds and young adults were provided with an equivalent multi-session training experience in producing and judging an artificial morphological rule (AMR), adults were superior to children of both age groups and the 8-year-olds were the poorest learners in all task parameters including in those that were clearly implicit. The AMR consisted of phonological transformations of verbs expressing a semantic distinction: whether the preceding noun was animate or inanimate. No explicit instruction of the AMR was provided. The 8-year-olds, unlike most adults and 12-year-olds, failed to explicitly uncover the semantic aspect of the AMR and subsequently to generalize it accurately to novel items. However, all participants learned to apply the AMR to repeated items and to generalize its phonological patterns to novel items, attaining accurate and fluent production, and exhibiting key characteristics of procedural memory. Nevertheless, adults showed a clear advantage in learning implicit task aspects, and in their long-term retention. Thus, our findings support the notion of age-dependent maturation in the establishment of declarative but also of procedural memory in a complex language task. In line with recent reports of no childhood advantage in non-linguistic skill learning, we propose that under some learning conditions adults can effectively express their language skill acquisition potential. Altogether, the maturational effects in the acquisition of an implicit AMR do not support a simple notion of a language skill learning

  12. No childhood advantage in the acquisition of skill in using an artificial language rule.

    PubMed

    Ferman, Sara; Karni, Avi

    2010-10-27

    A leading notion is that language skill acquisition declines between childhood and adulthood. While several lines of evidence indicate that declarative ("what", explicit) memory undergoes maturation, it is commonly assumed that procedural ("how-to", implicit) memory, in children, is well established. The language superiority of children has been ascribed to the childhood reliance on implicit learning. Here we show that when 8-year-olds, 12-year-olds and young adults were provided with an equivalent multi-session training experience in producing and judging an artificial morphological rule (AMR), adults were superior to children of both age groups and the 8-year-olds were the poorest learners in all task parameters including in those that were clearly implicit. The AMR consisted of phonological transformations of verbs expressing a semantic distinction: whether the preceding noun was animate or inanimate. No explicit instruction of the AMR was provided. The 8-year-olds, unlike most adults and 12-year-olds, failed to explicitly uncover the semantic aspect of the AMR and subsequently to generalize it accurately to novel items. However, all participants learned to apply the AMR to repeated items and to generalize its phonological patterns to novel items, attaining accurate and fluent production, and exhibiting key characteristics of procedural memory. Nevertheless, adults showed a clear advantage in learning implicit task aspects, and in their long-term retention. Thus, our findings support the notion of age-dependent maturation in the establishment of declarative but also of procedural memory in a complex language task. In line with recent reports of no childhood advantage in non-linguistic skill learning, we propose that under some learning conditions adults can effectively express their language skill acquisition potential. Altogether, the maturational effects in the acquisition of an implicit AMR do not support a simple notion of a language skill learning advantage

  13. Mission Advantages of Constant Power, Variable Isp Electrostatic Thrusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steven R.

    2000-01-01

    Electric propulsion has moved from station-keeping capability for spacecraft to primary propulsion with the advent of both the Deep Space One asteroid flyby and geosynchronous spacecraft orbit insertion. In both cases notably more payload was delivered than would have been possible with chemical propulsion. To provide even greater improvements electrostatic thruster performance could be varied in specific impulse, but kept at constant power to provide better payload or trip time performance for different mission phases. Such variable specific impulse mission applications include geosynchronous and low earth orbit spacecraft stationkeeping and orbit insertion, geosynchronous reusable tug missions, and interplanetary probes. The application of variable specific impulse devices is shown to add from 5 to 15% payload for these missions. The challenges to building such devices include variable voltage power supplies and extending fuel throughput capabilities across the specific impulse range.

  14. Pressure reducing regulator

    DOEpatents

    Whitehead, J.C.; Dilgard, L.W.

    1995-10-10

    A pressure reducing regulator that controls its downstream or outlet pressure to a fixed fraction of its upstream or inlet pressure is disclosed. The regulator includes a housing which may be of a titanium alloy, within which is located a seal or gasket at the outlet end which may be made of annealed copper, a rod, and piston, each of which may be made of high density graphite. The regulator is insensitive to temperature by virtue of being without a spring or gas sealed behind a diaphragm, and provides a reference for a system in which it is being used. The rod and piston of the regulator are constructed, for example, to have a 1/20 ratio such that when the downstream pressure is less than 1/20 of the upstream pressure the regulator opens and when the downstream pressure exceeds 1/20 of the upstream pressure the regulator closes. 10 figs.

  15. Pressure reducing regulator

    DOEpatents

    Whitehead, John C.; Dilgard, Lemoyne W.

    1995-01-01

    A pressure reducing regulator that controls its downstream or outlet pressure to a fixed fraction of its upstream or inlet pressure. The regulator includes a housing which may be of a titanium alloy, within which is located a seal or gasket at the outlet end which may be made of annealed copper, a rod, and piston, each of which may be made of high density graphite. The regulator is insensitive to temperature by virtue of being without a spring or gas sealed behind a diaphragm, and provides a reference for a system in which it is being used. The rod and piston of the regulator are constructed, for example, to have a 1/20 ratio such that when the downstream pressure is less than 1/20 of the upstream pressure the regulator opens and when the downstream pressure exceeds 1/20 of the upstream pressure the regulator closes.

  16. A Reduced Instruction Program

    PubMed Central

    Peisner, David

    1988-01-01

    A program concept, which uses click and point technology, was developed that allows complex data entry with only a mouse (or reduced number of keys if a mouse is not available) and minimal keyboard use. Instead of menus, the data, itself, becomes a context sensitive pointer to the next screen wherever possible. The primary purpose was to create a prototype that minimizes the amount of training necessary for medical center personnel to use it. While this program used a labor and delivery suite as an example, it could be extended to any type of data entry including history and physicals or progress notes in virtually any specialty. The program was written in C and the data, screens, and data dictionary are all stored in arrays. When a screen selection is made, the program checks the screen array to determine if data is entered, a message is displayed or another screen is displayed. This makes the concept relatively independent of the application.

  17. Compact Radar Transceiver with Included Calibration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McLinden, Matthew; Rincon, Rafael

    2013-01-01

    The Digital Beamforming Synthetic Aperture Radar (DBSAR) is an eight-channel phased array radar system that employs solid-state radar transceivers, a microstrip patch antenna, and a reconfigurable waveform generator and processor unit. The original DBSAR transceiver design utilizes connectorized electronic components that tend to be physically large and heavy. To achieve increased functionality in a smaller volume, PCB (printed circuit board) transceivers were designed to replace the large connectorized transceivers. One of the most challenging problems designing the transceivers in a PCB format was achieving proper performance in the calibration path. For a radar loop-back calibration path, a portion of the transmit signal is coupled out of the antenna feed and fed back into the receiver. This is achieved using passive components for stability and repeatability. Some signal also leaks through the receive path. As these two signal paths are correlated via an unpredictable phase, the leakage through the receive path during transmit must be 30 dB below the calibration path. For DBSAR s design, this requirement called for a 100-dB isolation in the receiver path during transmit. A total of 16 solid-state L-band transceivers on a PCB format were designed. The transceivers include frequency conversion stages, T/R switching, and a calibration path capable of measuring the transmit power-receiver gain product during transmit for pulse-by-pulse calibration or matched filtering. In particular, this calibration path achieves 100-dB isolation between the transmitted signal and the low-noise amplifier through the use of a switching network and a section of physical walls achieving attenuation of radiated leakage. The transceivers were designed in microstrip PCBs with lumped elements and individually packaged components for compactness. Each transceiver was designed on a single PCB with a custom enclosure providing interior walls and compartments to isolate transceiver

  18. Product manufacturing, quality, and reliability initiatives to maintain a competitive advantage and meet customer expectations in the semiconductor industry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capps, Gregory

    Semiconductor products are manufactured and consumed across the world. The semiconductor industry is constantly striving to manufacture products with greater performance, improved efficiency, less energy consumption, smaller feature sizes, thinner gate oxides, and faster speeds. Customers have pushed towards zero defects and require a more reliable, higher quality product than ever before. Manufacturers are required to improve yields, reduce operating costs, and increase revenue to maintain a competitive advantage. Opportunities exist for integrated circuit (IC) customers and manufacturers to work together and independently to reduce costs, eliminate waste, reduce defects, reduce warranty returns, and improve quality. This project focuses on electrical over-stress (EOS) and re-test okay (RTOK), two top failure return mechanisms, which both make great defect reduction opportunities in customer-manufacturer relationship. Proactive continuous improvement initiatives and methodologies are addressed with emphasis on product life cycle, manufacturing processes, test, statistical process control (SPC), industry best practices, customer education, and customer-manufacturer interaction.

  19. Electrochemical system including lamella settler crystallizer

    DOEpatents

    Maimoni, Arturo

    1988-01-01

    A crystallizer which incorporates a lamella settler and which is particularly applicable for use in batteries and power cells for electric vehicles or stationary applications. The lamella settler can be utilized for coarse particle separation or for agglomeration, and is particularly applicable to aluminum-air batteries or power cells for solving the hydrargillite (aluminum-hydroxide) removal problems from such batteries. This invention provides the advantages of very low energy consumption, turbulence, shear, cost and maintenance. Thus, due to the low shear and low turbulence of this invention, it is particularly effective in the control of aluminum hydroxide particle size distribution in the various sections of an aluminum-air system, as will as in other elecrochemical systems requiring separation for phases of different densities.

  20. Mission Advantages of NEXT: Nasa's Evolutionary Xenon Thruster

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steven; Gefert, Leon; Benson, Scott; Patterson, Michael; Noca, Muriel; Sims, Jon

    2002-01-01

    With the demonstration of the NSTAR propulsion system on the Deep Space One mission, the range of the Discovery class of NASA missions can now be expanded. NSTAR lacks, however, sufficient performance for many of the more challenging Office of Space Science (OSS) missions. Recent studies have shown that NASA's Evolutionary Xenon Thruster (NEXT) ion propulsion system is the best choice for many exciting potential OSS missions including outer planet exploration and inner solar system sample returns. The NEXT system provides the higher power, higher specific impulse, and higher throughput required by these science missions.