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Sample records for studies utilising dehydroabietic

  1. Laboratory study on OH-initiated degradation kinetics of dehydroabietic acid.

    PubMed

    Lai, Chengyue; Liu, Yongchun; Ma, Jinzhu; Ma, Qingxin; He, Hong

    2015-04-28

    Dehydroabietic acid (DHAA) is a specific organic tracer for the pyrolysis of conifer resin. To understand its atmospheric stability, the degradation behavior of particulate DHAA in the presence of hydroxyl radicals (OH) was investigated under different environmental conditions using a stainless steel reactor with volume of 30 cm(3), in the dark. At 25 °C and 40% relative humidity (RH), the second-order rate constant (k2) of pure DHAA with OH was measured to be 5.72 ± 0.87 × 10(-12) cm(3) molecule(-1) s(-1). The influence of temperature, RH and mixing state on the degradation kinetics of DHAA were also investigated. At 40% RH, k2 of pure DHAA increases with increasing temperature and follows the Arrhenius equation k2 = (8.9 ± 1.9) × 10(-10) exp[-(1508.2 ± 64.2)/T], while RH does not have significant impact on k2 at 25 °C. At 25 °C and 40% RH, compared with pure DHAA, the corresponding k2 for DHAA mixed with (NH4)2SO4 decreased to 4.58 ± 0.95 × 10(-12) cm(3) molecule(-1) s(-1), while the value was 3.30 ± 0.79 × 10(-12) cm(3) molecule(-1) s(-1) when mixed with soot. The atmospheric lifetime of DHAA varied from 2.3 ± 0.2 to 4.4 ± 0.8 days under different environmental conditions. This study indicates that degradation of DHAA by OH radicals is appreciable, and a significant error in source apportionment should be introduced if the contribution of degradation to DHAA concentration is not considered during air mass aging. PMID:25824374

  2. (+)-Dehydroabietic Acid, an Abietane-Type Diterpene, Inhibits Staphylococcus aureus Biofilms in Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Fallarero, Adyary; Skogman, Malena; Kujala, Janni; Rajaratnam, Mohanathas; Moreira, Vânia M.; Yli-Kauhaluoma, Jari; Vuorela, Pia

    2013-01-01

    Potent drugs are desperately needed to counteract bacterial biofilm infections, especially those caused by gram-positive organisms, such as Staphylococcus aureus. Moreover, anti-biofilm compounds/agents that can be used as chemical tools are also needed for basic in vitro or in vivo studies aimed at exploring biofilms behavior and functionability. In this contribution, a collection of naturally-occurring abietane-type diterpenes and their derivatives was tested against S. aureus biofilms using a platform consisting of two phenotypic assays that have been previously published by our group. Three active compounds were identified: nordehydroabietylamine (1), (+)-dehydroabietic acid (2) and (+)-dehydroabietylamine (3) that prevented biofilm formation in the low micromolar range, and unlike typical antibiotics, only 2 to 4-fold higher concentrations were needed to significantly reduce viability and biomass of existing biofilms. Compound 2, (+)-dehydroabietic acid, was the most selective towards biofilm bacteria, achieving high killing efficacy (based on log Reduction values) and it was best tolerated by three different mammalian cell lines. Since (+)-dehydroabietic acid is an easily available compound, it holds great potential to be used as a molecular probe in biofilms-related studies as well as to serve as inspirational chemical model for the development of potent drug candidates. PMID:23739682

  3. A new isolation method for biomass-burning tracers in snow: Measurements of p-hydroxybenzoic, vanillic, and dehydroabietic acids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Shaopeng; Liu, Dameng; Kang, Shichang; Kawamura, Kimitaka; Wu, Guangming; Zhang, Guoshuai; Cong, Zhiyuan

    2015-12-01

    Organic acids such as p-hydroxybenzoic, vanillic, and dehydroabietic acids are unique biomass-burning tracers for black carbon (BC) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in the snow of mountain glaciers, Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets. In this study, we developed a method by solid-phase extraction (SPE) coupled with gas chromatography/ion trap mass spectrometry for the determination of those organic acids in snow. The limit of detection (LOD) is 0.002, 0.001, 0.004 ng mL-1 for p-hydroxybenzoic, vanillic, and dehydroabietic acids, respectively. For p-hydroxybenzoic and vanillic acids, all the four SPE cartridges used produce good recoveries (>75%). However, for dehydroabietic acid, HLB cartridge has much better performance than DPA, FEP-2 and PAX cartridges. The method was applied to the snow samples collected from Zhadang Glacier in the Tibetan Plateau (TP), and demonstrated its feasibility in pretreating and detecting of these target compounds. We found that BC and DOC accumulated in the snow during winter and spring over the TP glaciers are mainly derived from biomass burning. This result demonstrates the capability of our analytical method for a deep understanding on the source of carbonaceous materials in snow.

  4. Optimal radiotherapy utilisation rate in developing countries: An IAEA study.

    PubMed

    Rosenblatt, Eduardo; Barton, Michael; Mackillop, William; Fidarova, Elena; Cordero, Lisbeth; Yarney, Joel; Lim, Gerard; Abad, Anthony; Cernea, Valentin; Stojanovic-Rundic, Suzana; Strojan, Primoz; Kobachi, Lotfi; Quarneti, Aldo

    2015-07-01

    Optimal radiotherapy utilisation rate (RTU) is the proportion of all cancer cases that should receive radiotherapy. Optimal RTU was estimated for 9 Middle Income Countries as part of a larger IAEA project to better understand RTU and stage distribution. PMID:26164776

  5. The conifer biomarkers dehydroabietic and abietic acids are widespread in Cyanobacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costa, Maria Sofia; Rego, Adriana; Ramos, Vitor; Afonso, Tiago B.; Freitas, Sara; Preto, Marco; Lopes, Viviana; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Magalhães, Catarina; Leão, Pedro N.

    2016-03-01

    Terpenes, a large family of natural products with important applications, are commonly associated with plants and fungi. The diterpenoids dehydroabietic and abietic acids are defense metabolites abundant in resin, and are used as biomarkers for conifer plants. We report here for the first time that the two diterpenoid acids are produced by members of several genera of cyanobacteria. Dehydroabietic acid was isolated from two cyanobacterial strains and its identity was confirmed spectroscopically. One or both of the diterpenoids were detected in the cells of phylogenetically diverse cyanobacteria belonging to four cyanobacterial ‘botanical orders’, from marine, estuarine and inland environments. Dehydroabietic acid was additionally found in culture supernatants. We investigated the natural role of the two resin acids in cyanobacteria using ecologically-relevant bioassays and found that the compounds inhibited the growth of a small coccoid cyanobacterium. The unexpected discovery of dehydroabietic and abietic acids in a wide range of cyanobacteria has implications for their use as plant biomarkers.

  6. EIMS Fragmentation Pathways and MRM Quantification of 7α/β-Hydroxy-Dehydroabietic Acid TMS Derivatives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rontani, Jean-François; Aubert, Claude; Belt, Simon T.

    2015-09-01

    EI mass fragmentation pathways of TMS derivatives οf 7α/β-hydroxy-dehydroabietic acids resulting from NaBH4-reduction of oxidation products of dehydroabietic acid (a component of conifers) were investigated and deduced by a combination of (1) low energy CID-GC-MS/MS, (2) deuterium labeling, (3) different derivatization methods, and (4) GC-QTOF accurate mass measurements. Having identified the main fragmentation pathways, the TMS-derivatized 7α/β-hydroxy-dehydroabietic acids could be quantified in multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) mode in sea ice and sediment samples collected from the Arctic. These newly characterized transformation products of dehydroabietic acid constitute potential tracers of biotic and abiotic degradation of terrestrial higher plants in the environment.

  7. EIMS Fragmentation Pathways and MRM Quantification of 7α/β-Hydroxy-Dehydroabietic Acid TMS Derivatives.

    PubMed

    Rontani, Jean-François; Aubert, Claude; Belt, Simon T

    2015-09-01

    EI mass fragmentation pathways of TMS derivatives οf 7α/β-hydroxy-dehydroabietic acids resulting from NaBH(4)-reduction of oxidation products of dehydroabietic acid (a component of conifers) were investigated and deduced by a combination of (1) low energy CID-GC-MS/MS, (2) deuterium labeling, (3) different derivatization methods, and (4) GC-QTOF accurate mass measurements. Having identified the main fragmentation pathways, the TMS-derivatized 7α/β-hydroxy-dehydroabietic acids could be quantified in multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) mode in sea ice and sediment samples collected from the Arctic. These newly characterized transformation products of dehydroabietic acid constitute potential tracers of biotic and abiotic degradation of terrestrial higher plants in the environment.

  8. The conifer biomarkers dehydroabietic and abietic acids are widespread in Cyanobacteria

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Maria Sofia; Rego, Adriana; Ramos, Vitor; Afonso, Tiago B.; Freitas, Sara; Preto, Marco; Lopes, Viviana; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Magalhães, Catarina; Leão, Pedro N.

    2016-01-01

    Terpenes, a large family of natural products with important applications, are commonly associated with plants and fungi. The diterpenoids dehydroabietic and abietic acids are defense metabolites abundant in resin, and are used as biomarkers for conifer plants. We report here for the first time that the two diterpenoid acids are produced by members of several genera of cyanobacteria. Dehydroabietic acid was isolated from two cyanobacterial strains and its identity was confirmed spectroscopically. One or both of the diterpenoids were detected in the cells of phylogenetically diverse cyanobacteria belonging to four cyanobacterial ‘botanical orders’, from marine, estuarine and inland environments. Dehydroabietic acid was additionally found in culture supernatants. We investigated the natural role of the two resin acids in cyanobacteria using ecologically-relevant bioassays and found that the compounds inhibited the growth of a small coccoid cyanobacterium. The unexpected discovery of dehydroabietic and abietic acids in a wide range of cyanobacteria has implications for their use as plant biomarkers. PMID:26996104

  9. The conifer biomarkers dehydroabietic and abietic acids are widespread in Cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Costa, Maria Sofia; Rego, Adriana; Ramos, Vitor; Afonso, Tiago B; Freitas, Sara; Preto, Marco; Lopes, Viviana; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Magalhães, Catarina; Leão, Pedro N

    2016-01-01

    Terpenes, a large family of natural products with important applications, are commonly associated with plants and fungi. The diterpenoids dehydroabietic and abietic acids are defense metabolites abundant in resin, and are used as biomarkers for conifer plants. We report here for the first time that the two diterpenoid acids are produced by members of several genera of cyanobacteria. Dehydroabietic acid was isolated from two cyanobacterial strains and its identity was confirmed spectroscopically. One or both of the diterpenoids were detected in the cells of phylogenetically diverse cyanobacteria belonging to four cyanobacterial 'botanical orders', from marine, estuarine and inland environments. Dehydroabietic acid was additionally found in culture supernatants. We investigated the natural role of the two resin acids in cyanobacteria using ecologically-relevant bioassays and found that the compounds inhibited the growth of a small coccoid cyanobacterium. The unexpected discovery of dehydroabietic and abietic acids in a wide range of cyanobacteria has implications for their use as plant biomarkers. PMID:26996104

  10. Factors affecting Japanese retirees' healthcare service utilisation in Malaysia: a qualitative study

    PubMed Central

    Kohno, Ayako; Nik Farid, Nik Daliana; Musa, Ghazali; Abdul Aziz, Norlaili; Nakayama, Takeo; Dahlui, Maznah

    2016-01-01

    Objective While living overseas in another culture, retirees need to adapt to a new environment but often this causes difficulties, particularly among those elderly who require healthcare services. This study examines factors affecting healthcare service utilisation among Japanese retirees in Malaysia. Design We conducted 6 focus group discussions with Japanese retirees and interviewed 8 relevant medical services providers in-depth. Guided by the Andersen Healthcare Utilisation Model, we managed and analysed the data, using QSR NVivo 10 software and the directed content analysis method. Setting We interviewed participants at Japan Clubs and their offices. Participants 30 Japanese retirees who live in Kuala Lumpur and Ipoh, and 8 medical services providers. Results We identified health beliefs, medical symptoms and health insurance as the 3 most important themes, respectively, representing the 3 dimensions within the Andersen Healthcare Utilisation Model. Additionally, language barriers, voluntary health repatriation to Japan and psychological support were unique themes that influence healthcare service utilisation among Japanese retirees. Conclusions The healthcare service utilisation among Japanese retirees in Malaysia could be partially explained by the Andersen Healthcare Utilisation Model, together with some factors that were unique findings to this study. Healthcare service utilisation among Japanese retirees in Malaysia could be improved by alleviating negative health beliefs through awareness programmes for Japanese retirees about the healthcare systems and cultural aspects of medical care in Malaysia. PMID:27006344

  11. Terpenoid biotransformation in mammals. IV Biotransformation of (+)-longifolene, (-)-caryophyllene, (-)-caryophyllene oxide, (-)-cyclocolorenone, (+)-nootkatone, (-)-elemol, (-)-abietic acid and (+)-dehydroabietic acid in rabbits.

    PubMed

    Asakawa, Y; Ishida, T; Toyota, M; Takemoto, T

    1986-08-01

    The metabolism of (+)-longifolene, (-)-caryophyllene, (-)-caryophyllene oxide, (-)-cyclocolorenone, (+)-nootkatone, (-)-elemol, (-)-abietic acid and (+)-dehydroabietic acid was studied in rabbits. Each of these sesquiterpenoids was converted to primary, secondary or tertiary alcohols, among which the primary alcohol was predominant. A vinylic methyl group and an exomethylene group were easily hydroxylated and converted to a glycol via an epoxide in many cases. Eight new metabolites were determined by chemical and spectroscopic methods. PMID:3765656

  12. Trends of CT utilisation in an emergency department in Taiwan: a 5-year retrospective study

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Sung-Yuan; Hsieh, Ming-Shun; Lin, Meng-Yu; Hsu, Chiann-Yi; Lin, Tzu-Chieh; How, Chorng-Kuang; Wang, Chen-Yu; Tsai, Jeffrey Che-Hung; Wu, Yu-Hui; Chang, Yan-Zin

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To investigate the association between the trends of CT utilisation in an emergency department (ED) and changes in clinical imaging practice and patients' disposition. Setting A hospital-based retrospective observational study of a public 1520-bed referral medical centre in Taiwan. Participants Adult ED visits (aged ≥18 years) during 2009–2013, with or without receiving CT, were enrolled as the study participants. Main outcome measures For all enrolled ED visits, we retrospectively analysed: (1) demographic characteristics, (2) triage categories, (3) whether CT was performed and the type of CT scan, (4) further ED disposition, (5) ED cost and (6) ED length of stay. Results In all, 269 239 adult ED visits (148 613 male patients and 120 626 female patients) were collected during the 5-year study period, comprising 38 609 CT scans. CT utilisation increased from 11.10% in 2009 to 17.70% in 2013 (trend test, p<0.001). Four in 5 types of CT scan (head, chest, abdomen and miscellaneous) were increasingly utilised during the study period. Also, CT was increasingly ordered annually in all age groups. Although ED CT utilisation rates increased markedly, the annual ED visits did not actually increase. Moreover, the subsequent admission rate, after receiving ED CT, declined (59.9% in 2009 to 48.2% in 2013). Conclusions ED CT utilisation rates increased significantly during 2009–2013. Emergency physicians may be using CT for non-emergent studies in the ED. Further investigation is needed to determine whether increasing CT utilisation is efficient and cost-effective. PMID:27279477

  13. Coping and health service utilisation in a UK study of paediatric sickle cell pain

    PubMed Central

    Anie, K; Steptoe, A; Ball, S; Dick, M; Smalling, B

    2002-01-01

    Aims: To assess sickle cell pain and coping in children and to examine the relation between these factors and the utilisation of health services. Methods: Cross sectional study involving 67 children with sickle cell disease attending three London hospitals. Interviews and questionnaires involved measures of pain, health service utilisation, and coping responses (measured with the Coping Strategies Questionnaire (CSQ), revised for children with sickle cell disease). Medical data on complications, haemoglobin (Hb) levels, and foetal haemoglobin (HbF) percentage were also collected. Results: Pain accounted for about 24% of hospital service use, independent of age, sex, number of with sickle cell disease complications, and Hb levels. However, 42% of patients had not utilised hospital services in the past 12 months. Three higher order factors emerged from analysis of the CSQ (active coping, affective coping, passive adherence coping). Pain severity was predicted by passive adherence coping, while utilisation of hospital services was predicted by active coping. Conclusions: Sickle cell disease in children involves severe recurrent pain leading to hospitalisation in some cases. Psychological coping patterns are relevant to both pain experience, and the use of acute hospital services. It is likely that children would benefit from community based interventions that incorporate both medical and psychological assessments. PMID:11970920

  14. Impact of continuous Medical Aid utilisation on healthcare utilisation: unique insight using the 2008–2012 Korean Welfare Panel Study (KOWEPS)

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jae-Hyun; Kim, Na Rae; Park, Eun-Cheol; Han, Kyu-Tae; Choi, Young; Lee, Sang Gyu

    2016-01-01

    Objectives Although there has been considerable discussion about the social safety net, few studies related to effect of duration of continuous receipt of Medical Aid on healthcare utilisation have been conducted. Therefore, we investigate whether the duration of receiving Medical Aid affected medical care utilisation. Setting Data were collected from the Korean Welfare Panel Study conducted from 2008 to 2012. Participants We included 11 783 samples. Interventions Estimating changes in their healthcare utilisation during specific time intervals (1, 2 and ≥3 years) after they switched from National Health Insurance to Medical Aid. Primary and secondary outcome measures Number of outpatient visits. Results The number of outpatient visits per year was 0.0.051-fold higher (p value: 0.434) among those who were Medical Aid beneficiaries for a continuous period of 1 year, 0.0.267-fold higher (p value: 0.000) among those who were beneficiaries for a continuous period of 2 years, and 0.0.562-fold higher (p value:<0.0001) among those who were beneficiaries for a continuous period of 3 years than it was among those who were beneficiaries of National Health Insurance. Conclusions Our results reflect an association between the number of consecutive years of receiving Medical Aid and number of outpatient visits. Since duration of dependence is correlated with reduced exit rates, limits on length of benefits should be considered to strengthen the incentive to return to work. PMID:27053265

  15. Ice core records of biomass burning tracers (levoglucosan and dehydroabietic, vanillic and p-hydroxybenzoic acids) and total organic carbon for past 300 years in the Kamchatka Peninsula, Northeast Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawamura, Kimitaka; Izawa, Yusuke; Mochida, Michihiro; Shiraiwa, Takayuki

    2012-12-01

    We successfully detected biomass burning tracers including levoglucosan and vanillic, p-hydroxybenzoic and dehydroabietic acids in an ice core (153 m long, ca. 300 years old) taken from Ushkovsky ice cap (altitude, 3903 m), the Kamchatka Peninsula, Northeast Asia. Concentrations of total organic carbon (TOC) were also determined in the ice core. Levoglucosan, which is produced by pyrolysis of cellulose and hemicellulose and thus is a general tracer of biomass burning, showed sporadic peaks in the years of 1705, 1759, 1883, 1915, 1949 and 1972, with the largest peak in 1949. However, its concentrations did not show a systematic increase in the last century although the concentration peaks seemingly corresponded to the higher ambient temperatures in the northern high latitudes. In contrast, dehydroabietic acid, a specific tracer of the pyrolysis of conifer resin, showed a gradual increase from the early 1900s to 1990s with a significant peak in 1970. Contributions of dehydroabietic acid to TOC also showed an increasing trend for the 20th century. Similarly, vanillic and p-hydroxybenzoic acids presented higher concentrations in the last half-century with sporadic peaks in 1705, 1759 and 1949. This study showed that general biomass burning tracers such as levoglucosan have been sporadically transported over the glacier of the Kamchatka Peninsula. In contrast, the ice core record of dehydroabietic acid indicated that fires of boreal conifer forest have more frequently and increasingly occurred in Far East and Siberia during the last century and transported to the Northwestern Pacific. The present study demonstrates that organic tracers of biomass burning preserved in ice core could provide historical records of biomass burning and boreal forest fires.

  16. Patients’ subjective concepts about primary healthcare utilisation: the study protocol of a qualitative comparative study between Norway and Germany

    PubMed Central

    Herrmann, Wolfram J; Haarmann, Alexander; Flick, Uwe; Bærheim, Anders; Lichte, Thomas; Herrmann, Markus

    2013-01-01

    Background In Germany, utilisation of ambulatory healthcare services is high compared with other countries: While a study based on the process data of German statutory health insurances showed an average of 17.1 physician-patient-contacts per year, the comparable figure for Norway is about five. The usual models of healthcare utilisation, such as Rosenstock's Health Belief Model and Andersen's Behavioural Model, cannot explain these differences adequately. Organisational factors of the healthcare system, such as gatekeeping, do not explain the magnitude of the differences. Our hypothesis is that patients’ subjective concepts about primary healthcare utilisation play a major role in explaining different healthcare utilisation behaviour in different countries. Hence, the aim of this study is to explore these subjective concepts comparatively, between Germany and Norway. Methods/design With that aim in mind, we chose a comparative qualitative study design. In Norway and Germany, we are going to interview 20 patients each with qualitative episodic interviews. In addition, we are going to conduct participant observation in four German and four Norwegian primary care practices. The data will be analysed by thematic coding. Using selected categories, we are going to conduct comparative case and group analyses. Ethics and dissemination The study adheres to the Declaration of Helsinki. All interviewees will sign informed consent forms and all patients will be observed during consultation. Strict rules for data security will apply. Developed theory and policy implications are going to be disseminated by a workshop, presentations for experts and laypersons and publications. PMID:23794555

  17. Drug Utilisation Study in a Tertiary Care Center: Recommendations for Improving Hospital Drug Dispensing Policies

    PubMed Central

    Mittal, Niti; Mittal, R.; Singh, I.; Shafiq, Nusrat; Malhotra, S.

    2014-01-01

    Drug therapy accounts for a major portion of health expenditure. A useful strategy for achieving cost efficient healthcare is drug utilisation research as it forms the basis for making amendments in drug policies and helps in rational drug use. The present observational study was conducted to generate data on drug utilization in inpatients of our tertiary care hospital to identify potential targets for improving drug prescribing patterns. Data was collected retrospectively from randomly selected 231 medical records of patients admitted in various wards of the hospital. WHO Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical/Defined Daily Dose methodology was used to assess drug utilisation data and drug prescriptions were analysed by WHO core drug indicators. Antibiotics were prescribed most frequently and also accounted for majority of drug costs. The prescribed daily dose for most of the antibiotics corresponded to defined daily dose reflecting adherence to international recommendations. Brand name prescribing and polypharmacy was very common.78% of the total drugs prescribed were from the National List of Essential Medicines 2003. Restricting the use of newer and costlier antibiotics, branded drugs and number of drugs per prescription could be considered as targets to cut down the cost of drug therapysignificantly. PMID:25284928

  18. Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of Novel Dehydroabietic Acid Derivatives Conjugated with Acyl-Thiourea Peptide Moiety as Antitumor Agents

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Le; Qu, Hong-En; Huang, Xiao-Chao; Pan, Ying-Ming; Liang, Dong; Chen, Zhen-Feng; Wang, Heng-Shan; Zhang, Ye

    2015-01-01

    A series of dehydroabietic acid (DHAA) acyl-thiourea derivatives were designed and synthesized as potent antitumor agents. The in vitro pharmacological screening results revealed that the target compounds exhibited potent cytotoxicity against HeLa, SK-OV-3 and MGC-803 tumor cell lines, while they showed lower cytotoxicity against HL-7702 normal human river cells. Compound 9n (IC50 = 6.58 ± 1.11 μM) exhibited the best antitumor activity against the HeLa cell line and even displayed more potent inhibitory activity than commercial antitumor drug 5-FU (IC50 = 36.58 ± 1.55 μM). The mechanism of representative compound 9n was then studied by acridine orange/ethidium bromide staining, Hoechst 33,258 staining, JC-1 mitochondrial membrane potential staining, TUNEL assay and flow cytometry, which illustrated that this compound could induce apoptosis in HeLa cells. Cell cycle analysis indicated that compound 9n mainly arrested HeLa cells in the S phase stage. Further investigation demonstrated that compound 9n induced apoptosis of HeLa cells through a mitochondrial pathway. PMID:26132564

  19. Dehydroabietic Acid Derivative QC2 Induces Oncosis in Hepatocellular Carcinoma Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Guang; Jiang, Chunping; Wang, Zhongxia; Chen, Weibo; Gu, Wen; Ding, Yitao

    2014-01-01

    Aim. Rosin, the traditional Chinese medicine, is reported to be able to inhibit skin cancer cell lines. In this report, we investigate the inhibitory effect against HCC cells of QC2, the derivative of rosin's main components dehydroabietic acid. Methods. MTT assay was used to determine the cytotoxicity of QC2. Morphological changes were observed by time-lapse microscopy and transmission electron microscopy and the cytoskeleton changes were observed by laser-scanning confocal microscopy. Cytomembrane integrity and organelles damage were confirmed by detection of the reactive oxygen (ROS), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), and mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψm). The underlying mechanism was manifested by Western blotting. The oncotic cell death was further confirmed by detection of oncosis related protein calpain. Results. Swelling cell type and destroyed cytoskeleton were observed in QC2-treated HCC cells. Organelle damage was visualized by transmission electron microscopy. The detection of ROS accumulation, increased LDH release, and decreased ATP and Δψm confirmed the cell death. The oncotic related protein calpain was found to increase time-dependently in QC2-treated HCC cells, while its inhibitor PD150606 attenuated the cytotoxicity. Conclusions. Dehydroabietic acid derivative QC2 activated oncosis related protein calpain to induce the damage of cytomembrane and organelles which finally lead to oncosis in HCC cells. PMID:25110686

  20. Bioavailability of benzo(a)pyrene and dehydroabietic acid from a few lake waters containing varying dissolved organic carbon concentrations to Daphnia magna

    SciTech Connect

    Oikari, A.; Kukkonen, J. )

    1990-07-01

    Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in natural waters consists of a great variety of organic molecules. Some of these molecules have been identified but most of them cannot be identified. This unidentified group of heterogeneous organic macromolecules is considered as humic substances. The role of humic substances in water chemistry and in aquatic toxicology is receiving increasing attention. The effects of DOC on the bioavailability of organic pollutants have been demonstrated in several studies. A decreased bioavailability has been demonstrated in most cases. Both the quantity and the quality of DOC are suggested determinants of this apparent ecotoxicological buffer of inland waters worldwide. In this study, the authors measured the bioaccumulation of benzo(a)pyrene (BaP) and dehydroabietic acid (DHAA) in Daphnia magna using a wide range of naturally occurring DOC levels. Another objective was to associate the reduced bioavailability with the chemical characteristics of water and DOC.

  1. Glucose utilisation during status epilepticus in an epilepsy model induced by pilocarpine: a qualitative study.

    PubMed

    Scorza, Fulvio Alexandre; Arida, Ricardo Mario; Priel, Margareth Rose; Calderazzo, Lineu; Cavalheiro, Esper Abrão

    2002-06-01

    Status epilepticus (SE) is a medical emergency and it is associated to brain damage. 2-deoxy-[14C] glucose (2-DG) procedure has been used to measure the alterations in the functional activity of the brain induced by various pharmacological and toxicological agents. The aim of this study was to determine which changes occur in the seizure anatomic substrates during the SE induced by pilocarpine (PILO) using [14C]-2 deoxyglucose functional mapping technique. Wistar male adult rats were submitted to SE PILO-induced for 6h and received [14C] 2-deoxyglucose injection via jugular vein 45 min before the 6th hour of SE. The control animals were submitted to all procedures but received saline and not pilocarpine. Brain sections were prepared and exposed X-ray film about seven days. The optical density of each region was obtained using a solid state digital analyser. The analysis revealed that 14C-2DG utilisation was pronounced in the SE rats on the areas corresponding to the hippocampal formation (+50.6%), caudate-putamen (+30.6%), frontoparietal cortex (+32.2%), amygdala (+31.7%), entorrinal cortex (+28.2%), thalamic nucleus (+93.5%), pre-tectal area (+50.1%) and substantia nigra (+50.3%) when compared to control. Our results suggest that the different activation levels of the distinct structures may be particularly important for understanding triggering and spreading mechanisms underlying epileptic activity during status epilepticus.

  2. Formal home-care utilisation by older adults in Ireland: evidence from the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA).

    PubMed

    Murphy, Catriona M; Whelan, Brendan J; Normand, Charles

    2015-07-01

    The aim of this study was to provide a population-based estimate of the utilisation of publicly financed formal home care by older adults in Ireland and to identify the principal characteristics of those utilising formal home care. Data were collected through computer-aided personal interviews from a representative sample of community living older adults in Ireland. The interviews were conducted between 2009 and 2011 as part of the first wave of the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA). The study is cross-sectional in design and limited to participants aged 65 years and older (n = 3507). Results reveal that 8.2% (95% CI 7.1%-9.3%) of participants utilised publicly financed formal home care in the form of home help and/or personal care. Key determinants of formal home-care utilisation were Instrumental Activity of Daily Living (IADL) difficulty (Adj OR 3.8, 95% CI 2.7-5.3), older age (Adj OR 3.4, 95% CI 2.4-4.8) and living alone (Adj OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.9-3.8). Almost half of those utilising formal care did not self-report an Activity of Daily Living (ADL) difficulty or an IADL difficulty. Government policy aims to reduce the need for long-term residential care by providing formal home care for older adults with low to moderate levels of dependency. This requires an increasing emphasis on personal care provision in the home. No evidence was found in this study to suggest that a shift in emphasis from formal domestic to personal care is taking place in Ireland. The absence of standardised assessment and eligibility criteria are deemed to be barriers to reorientation of the system. From a health services perspective, the current situation is not sustainable into the future and requires a focused policy response.

  3. Formal home-care utilisation by older adults in Ireland: evidence from the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA).

    PubMed

    Murphy, Catriona M; Whelan, Brendan J; Normand, Charles

    2015-07-01

    The aim of this study was to provide a population-based estimate of the utilisation of publicly financed formal home care by older adults in Ireland and to identify the principal characteristics of those utilising formal home care. Data were collected through computer-aided personal interviews from a representative sample of community living older adults in Ireland. The interviews were conducted between 2009 and 2011 as part of the first wave of the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA). The study is cross-sectional in design and limited to participants aged 65 years and older (n = 3507). Results reveal that 8.2% (95% CI 7.1%-9.3%) of participants utilised publicly financed formal home care in the form of home help and/or personal care. Key determinants of formal home-care utilisation were Instrumental Activity of Daily Living (IADL) difficulty (Adj OR 3.8, 95% CI 2.7-5.3), older age (Adj OR 3.4, 95% CI 2.4-4.8) and living alone (Adj OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.9-3.8). Almost half of those utilising formal care did not self-report an Activity of Daily Living (ADL) difficulty or an IADL difficulty. Government policy aims to reduce the need for long-term residential care by providing formal home care for older adults with low to moderate levels of dependency. This requires an increasing emphasis on personal care provision in the home. No evidence was found in this study to suggest that a shift in emphasis from formal domestic to personal care is taking place in Ireland. The absence of standardised assessment and eligibility criteria are deemed to be barriers to reorientation of the system. From a health services perspective, the current situation is not sustainable into the future and requires a focused policy response. PMID:25442330

  4. In their own words: qualitative study of high-utilising primary care patients with medically unexplained symptoms

    PubMed Central

    Dwamena, Francesca C; Lyles, Judith S; Frankel, Richard M; Smith, Robert C

    2009-01-01

    Background High utilising primary care patients with medically unexplained symptoms (MUS) often frustrate their primary care providers. Studies that elucidate the attitudes of these patients may help to increase understanding and improve confidence of clinicians who care for them. The objective of this study was to describe and analyze perceptions and lived experiences of high utilising primary care patients with MUS. Methods A purposive sample of 19 high utilising primary care patients for whom at least 50% (69.6% in this sample) of visits for two years could not be explained medically, were encouraged to talk spontaneously about themselves and answer semi-structured questions. Verbatim transcripts of interviews were analyzed using an iterative consensus building process. Results Patients with MUS almost universally described current and/or past family dysfunction and were subjected to excessive testing and ineffective empirical treatments. Three distinct groups emerged from the data. 1) Some patients, who had achieved a significant degree of psychological insight and had success in life, primarily sought explanations for their symptoms. 2) Patients who had less psychological insight were more disabled by their symptoms and felt strongly entitled to be excused from normal social obligations. Typically, these patients primarily sought symptom relief, legitimization, and support. 3) Patients who expressed worry about missed diagnoses demanded excessive care and complained when their demands were resisted. Conclusion High utilising primary care patients are a heterogeneous group with similar experiences and different perceptions, behaviours and needs. Recognizing these differences may be critical to effective treatment and reduction in utilisation. PMID:19772582

  5. Impact of health insurance status changes on healthcare utilisation patterns: a longitudinal cohort study in South Korea

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jae-Hyun; Lee, Sang Gyu; Lee, Kwang-Soo; Jang, Sung-In; Cho, Kyung-Hee; Park, Eun-Cheol

    2016-01-01

    Objectives The study examined medical care utilisation by health insurance status changes. Setting The Korean Welfare Panel Study (KoWePs) was used. Participants This study analysed 14 267 participants at baseline (2006). Interventions The individuals were categorised into four health insurance status groups: continuous health insurance, change from health insurance to Medical Aid, change from Medical Aid to health insurance, or continuous Medical Aid. Primary and secondary outcome measures Three dependent variables were also analysed: days spent in hospital; number of outpatient visits; and hospitalisations per year. Longitudinal data analysis was used to determine whether changes in health insurance status were associated with healthcare utilisation. Results The number of outpatient visits per year was 0.1.363 times higher (p<0.0001) in the continuous Medical Aid than in the continuous health insurance group. The number of hospitalisations per year was 1.560 times higher (p<0.001) in new Medical Aid and −0.636 times lower (p<0.001) in new health insurance than in continuous health insurance group. The number of days spent in hospital per year was −0.567 times lower (p=0.021) in the new health insurance than in the continuous health insurance group. Conclusions Health insurance beneficiaries with a coverage level lower than Medical Aid showed lower healthcare utilisation, as measured by the number of hospitalisations and days spent in hospital per year. PMID:27036140

  6. Low utilisation of diabetes medicines in Iran, despite their affordability (2000–2012): a time-series and benchmarking study

    PubMed Central

    Sarayani, Amir; Rashidian, Arash; Gholami, Kheirollah

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Diabetes is a major public health concern worldwide, particularly in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs). Limited data exist on the status of access to diabetes medicines in LMICs. We assessed the utilisation and affordability of diabetes medicines in Iran as a middle-income country. Design We used a retrospective time-series design (2000–2012) and assessed national diabetes medicines’ utilisation using pharmaceuticals wholesale data. Methods We calculated defined daily dose consumptions per population days (DDDs/1000 inhabitants/day; DIDs) indicator. Findings were benchmarked with data from Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. We also employed Drug Utilization-90% (DU-90) method to compare DU-90s with the Essential Medicines List published by the WHO. We measured affordability using number of minimum daily wage required to purchase a treatment course for 1 month. Results Diabetes medicines’ consumption increased from 4.47 to 33.54 DIDs. The benchmarking showed that medicines’ utilisation in Iran in 2011 was only 54% of the median DIDs of 22 OECD countries. Oral hypoglycaemic agents consisted over 80% of use throughout the study period. Regular and isophane insulin (NPH), glibenclamide, metformin and gliclazide were the DU-90 drugs in 2012. Metformin, glibenclamide and regular/NPH insulin combination therapy were affordable throughout the study period (∼0.4, ∼0.1, ∼0.3 of minimum daily wage, respectively). While the affordability of novel insulin preparations improved over time, they were still unaffordable in 2012. Conclusions The utilisation of diabetes medicines was relatively low, perhaps due to underdiagnosis and inadequate management of patients with diabetes. This had occurred despite affordability of essential diabetes medicines in Iran. Appropriate policies are required to address the underutilisation of diabetes medicines in Iran. PMID:25324322

  7. Utilisation of Healthcare and Associated Services in Huntington’s disease: a data mining study

    PubMed Central

    Busse, Monica; Al-Madfai, Dr. Hasan; Kenkre, Joyce; Landwehrmeyer, G. Bernhard; Bentivoglio, AnnaRita; Rosser, Anne

    2011-01-01

    Background: People with Huntington’s disease (HD) often require tailored healthcare and support packages that develop as the disease progresses. The Client Service Receipt Inventory (CSRI) gathers retrospective information on service utilization. This study investigated the use of formal services and informal care as measured by the CSRI and explored associations between informal care, disease severity and functional ability as measured by the Unified Huntington’s Disease Rating Scale Total Motor Score (UHDRS-TMS) and functional scales. Methods: All monitored longitudinal data from annual clinical assessments of UHDRS-TMS and functional assessments and CSRI collected under the auspices of the European Huntington’s Disease Network (EHDN) REGISTRY study between the years 2004 and 2009 were utilised in the analyses. Disease severity was reflected by UHDRS-TMS. Functional ability was measured using the UHDRS functional scales. CSRI data were analysed according to percentage use of individual formal services and total estimated hours per week of informal care. Regression analyses were conducted to identify any associations between disease severity, functional ability and hours of informal care. Results: 451 HD patients (212 female; 239 male) completed one visit; 105 patients (54 females; 51 males) completed two visits and 47 patients (20 females; 27 males) completed three visits in total over the 5 year period. The mean time between visits was 1.2 years. At visit one, 74% of the participants reported being in receipt of at least one formal hospital-based service in the previous six months, and 89% reported receipt of formal primary and community care services. In contrast, at the third visit, 62% of people had used hospital based services and 94% formal community based services in the previous six months. Fifty % of individuals required some form of informal care in the home at visit 1; this increased to 68% at visits 2 and 3. The mean (SD) estimated weekly total

  8. Correlations of siblings' and mothers' utilisation of primary and hospital health care: a record linkage study in Western Australia.

    PubMed

    Ward, Alison M; de Klerk, Nick; Pritchard, Douglas; Firth, Martin; Holman, C D'Arcy J

    2006-03-01

    A relationship between maternal and child use of general practitioners (GPs) has been shown to exist for some time, however, the reasons for this relationship are not clear and the extent to which this relationship extends to tertiary care is unknown. The aim of this study was to examine the relationships between the utilisation of health care by siblings and mothers over a 14 year period. A retrospective cohort study of 756 mothers and their 1494 children up to age 14 years was conducted in three general practices in Western Australia. Medicare claims and hospital morbidity records for 1984-1997 were linked using deterministic and probabilistic matching. Generalised Estimating Equations and correlations were used to examine the relationships between the utilisation of primary and hospital health care by family members. Significant correlations were found between hospital admissions of all participants and their GP visits, specialist visits, pathology and diagnostic imaging combined and hospital length of stay. There was a strong association between siblings' use of GPs. A child's rate of GP attendance increased with that of its mother. There was a weak but significant relationship between siblings' use of hospitals, and a child's hospital admission rate increased with that of its mother. It is concluded that there is a strong relationship between siblings' use of GPs and a weaker but still significant association between the hospital admissions of siblings. As expected, there were strong associations between mother and child visits to GPs. There was also an association between a mother's use of hospital and that of her children. This finding reduces the plausibility that the relationships found between utilisation of health care by siblings and mothers can be explained entirely by behavioural factors, and suggests the presence of intergenerational correlation of morbidity.

  9. The role and utilisation of public health evaluations in Europe: a case study of national hand hygiene campaigns

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Evaluations are essential to judge the success of public health programmes. In Europe, the proportion of public health programmes that undergo evaluation remains unclear. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control sought to determine the frequency of evaluations amongst European national public health programmes by using national hand hygiene campaigns as an example of intervention. Methods A cohort of all national hand hygiene campaigns initiated between 2000 and 2012 was utilised for the analysis. The aim was to collect information about evaluations of hand hygiene campaigns and their frequency. The survey was sent to nominated contact points for healthcare-associated infection surveillance in European Union and European Economic Area Member States. Results Thirty-six hand hygiene campaigns in 20 countries were performed between 2000 and 2012. Of these, 50% had undergone an evaluation and 55% of those utilised the WHO hand hygiene intervention self-assessment tool. Evaluations utilised a variety of methodologies and indicators in assessing changes in hand hygiene behaviours pre and post intervention. Of the 50% of campaigns that were not evaluated, two thirds reported that both human and financial resource constraints posed significant barriers for the evaluation. Conclusion The study identified an upward trend in the number of hand hygiene campaigns implemented in Europe. It is likely that the availability of the internationally-accepted evaluation methodology developed by the WHO contributed to the evaluation of more hand hygiene campaigns in Europe. Despite this rise, hand hygiene campaigns appear to be under-evaluated. The development of simple, programme-specific, standardised guidelines, evaluation indicators and other evidence-based public health materials could help promote evaluations across all areas of public health. PMID:24507086

  10. Dehydroabietic Acid Derivative QC4 Induces Gastric Cancer Cell Death via Oncosis and Apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Dongjun; Ni, Qing; Ji, Anlai; Gu, Wen; Wu, Junhua

    2016-01-01

    Aim. QC4 is the derivative of rosin's main components dehydroabietic acid (DHA). We investigated the cytotoxic effect of QC4 on gastric cancer cells and revealed the mechanisms beneath the induction of cell death. Methods. The cytotoxic effect of QC4 on gastric cancer cells was evaluated by CCK-8 assay and flow cytometry. The underlying mechanisms were tested by administration of cell death related inhibitors and detection of apoptotic and oncosis related proteins. Cytomembrane integrity and organelles damage were confirmed by lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) leakage assay, mitochondrial function test, and cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration detection. Results. QC4 inhibited cell proliferation dose- and time-dependently and destroyed cell membrane integrity, activated calpain-1 autolysis, and induced apoptotic protein cleavage in gastric cancer cells. The detection of decreased ATP and mitochondrial membrane potential, ROS accumulation, and cytosolic free Ca2+ elevation confirmed organelles damage in QC4-treated gastric cancer cells. Conclusions. DHA derivative QC4 induced the damage of cytomembrane and organelles which finally lead to oncosis and apoptosis in gastric cancer cells. Therefore, as a derivative of plant derived small molecule DHA, QC4 might become a promising agent in gastric cancer therapy. PMID:27057539

  11. Acceptance and utilisation of the Incident Command System in first response and allied disciplines: an Ohio study.

    PubMed

    Decker, Russell J

    2011-10-01

    In response to the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001, an effort was made to establish a common and uniform command structure for use by the nation's first responder organisations, as well as those disciplines generally expected to assist first responders during a major incident or disaster. The result was the issuance of the National Incident Management System1 or NIMS by the US Department of Homeland Security in 2004. Included in the NIMS document was an embracing of the Incident Command System or ICS, long utilised in the fire service for the effective management of emergency response. The NIMS doctrine also identified certain allied disciplines that needed to adopt this new system for responding to major events. Some of these disciplines included specialised first response units, such as, bomb squads and hazardous materials teams. Other partner disciplines not usually associated with emergency response to include public health and public works were also included. This study will attempt to look at a single component of NIMS, specifically the Incident Command System, and measure its acceptance and utilisation by first responder organisations and selected allied disciplines in the state of Ohio. This is particularly important at this time since the US government is being forced to reduce budgets significantly and determine which laudable policies and programmes will be cut.

  12. Bacteria obtained from a sequencing batch reactor that are capable of growth on dehydroabietic acid.

    PubMed

    Mohn, W W

    1995-06-01

    Eleven isolates capable of growth on the resin acid dehydroabietic acid (DhA) were obtained from a sequencing batch reactor designed to treat a high-strength process stream from a paper mill. The isolates belonged to two groups, represented by strains DhA-33 and DhA-35, which were characterized. In the bioreactor, bacteria like DhA-35 were more abundant than those like DhA-33. The population in the bioreactor of organisms capable of growth on DhA was estimated to be 1.1 x 10(6) propagules per ml, based on a most-probable-number determination. Analysis of small-subunit rRNA partial sequences indicated that DhA-33 was most closely related to Sphingomonas yanoikuyae (Sab = 0.875) and that DhA-35 was most closely related to Zoogloea ramigera (Sab = 0.849). Both isolates additionally grew on other abietanes, i.e., abietic and palustric acids, but not on the pimaranes, pimaric and isopimaric acids. For DhA-33 and DhA-35 with DhA as the sole organic substrate, doubling times were 2.7 and 2.2 h, respectively, and growth yields were 0.30 and 0.25 g of protein per g of DhA, respectively. Glucose as a cosubstrate stimulated growth of DhA-33 on DhA and stimulated DhA degradation by the culture. Pyruvate as a cosubstrate did not stimulate growth of DhA-35 on DhA and reduced the specific rate of DhA degradation of the culture. DhA induced DhA and abietic acid degradation activities in both strains, and these activities were heat labile. Cell suspensions of both strains consumed DhA at a rate of 6 mumol mg of protein-1 h-1.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  13. Estimation of drought and flood recurrence interval from historical discharge data: a case study utilising the power law distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eadie, Chris; Favis-Mortlock, David

    2010-05-01

    The choice of which statistical distribution to fit to historical discharge data is critical when attempting to predict the most extreme flows. It has been shown that depending upon the distribution selected, the calculated return periods can vary dramatically. Cunnane (1985) discussed the factors affecting the choice of distribution for river flow series data, and was able to show that small differences in the Extreme Value Type 1 (Gumbel), Type 2, and Type 3 can lead to large differences in the predicted return period. Indeed this divergence increases as the return period becomes larger: a finding which has obvious implications for fluvial management. Despite this, in many studies which fit a frequency-magnitude distribution to fluvial discharge data, the choice of distribution appears driven by regional convention, or even by some other apparently arbitrary factor. Benson (1968) analysed data for ten US stations, and compared the fit using the log-normal, gamma, Gumbel, log-Gumbel, Hazen and log-Pearson type 3 distributions. On the basis of this study alone, the standard approach to flow frequency estimation in the USA became the fitting of a log-Pearson type 3 (LP3) distribution (US Water Resources Council, 1982). While several other countries have adopted a similar approach, usage of the LP3 distribution is not geographically universal. Hydrologists in the United Kingdom conventionally utilise a fitted generalised logistic distribution for flow frequency estimation (Robson and Reed, 1999) while Chinese hydrologists utilise the log-normal distribution (Singh, 2002). Choice of fitted distribution is obviously crucial, since selecting one distribution rather than another will change the estimated probabilities of future droughts and floods, particularly the largest and rarest events. Malamud et al. (1996) showed that a flood of equivalent size to that experienced on the Mississippi in 1993 has a recurrence interval on the order of 100 years when a power

  14. School Reform for Positive Behaviour Support through Collaborative Learning: Utilising Lesson Study for a Learning Community

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saito, Eisuke; Watanabe, Miki; Gillies, Robyn; Someya, Ikuo; Nagashima, Takashi; Sato, Masaaki; Murase, Masatsugu

    2015-01-01

    Recent research has emphasised educating children about positive behaviours to overcome delinquency issues, but there is little clarification of what factors lead to positive behaviours. This study analyses factors that led to children's positive behaviours at a junior high school in Japan, which experienced a dramatic turnaround after…

  15. Utilising a Virtual World to Teach Performance Appraisal: An Exploratory Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morse, Shona

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: The aim of this paper is to give a critical assessment of a study designed to investigate the potential of a new method for teaching HRD students about performance appraisal. It is argued that this approach is in the vanguard of developments in IT and learning. Design/methodology/approach: The paper takes the form of an explorative study…

  16. Study of calcification formation and disease diagnostics utilising advanced vibrational spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kerssens, Marleen Maartje

    The accurate and safe diagnosis of breast cancer is a significant societal issue, with annual disease incidence of 48,000 women and around 370 men in the UK. Early diagnosis of the disease allows more conservative treatments and better patient outcomes. Microcalcifications in breast tissue are an important indicator for breast cancers, and often the only sign of their presence. Several studies have suggested that the type of calcification formed may act as a marker for malignancy and its presence may be of biological significance. In this work, breast calcifications are studied with FTIR, synchrotron FTIR, ATR FTIR, and Raman mapping to explore their disease specific composition. From a comparison between vibrational spectroscopy and routine staining procedures it becomes clear that calcium builds up prior to calcification formation. Raman and FTIR indicate the same size for calcifications and are in agreement with routine staining techniques. From the synchrotron FTIR measurements it can be proven that amide is present in the centre of the calcifications and the intensity of the bands depends on the pathology. Special attention is paid to the type of carbonate substitution in the calcifications relating to different pathology grades. In contrast to mammography, Raman spectroscopy has the capability to distinguish calcifications based on their chemical composition. The ultimate goal is to turn the acquired knowledge from the mapping studies into a clinical tool based on deep Raman spectroscopy. Deep Raman techniques have a considerable potential to reduce large numbers of normal biopsies, reduce the time delay between screening and diagnosis and therefore diminish patient anxiety. In order to achieve this, a deep Raman system is designed and after evaluation of its performance tested on buried calcification standards in porcine soft tissue and human mammary tissue. It is shown that, when the calcification is probed through tissue, the strong 960 cm-1 phosphate band

  17. Association between secure patient–clinician email and clinical services utilisation in a US integrated health system: a retrospective cohort study

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Di; Palen, Ted E; Tsai, Joanne; McLeod, Melanie; Garrido, Terhilda; Qian, Heather

    2015-01-01

    Objective To assess associations between secure patient–clinician email use and clinical services utilisation over time. Design Retrospective cohort study between July 2010 and December 2013. Controlling for a utilisation surge around first secure email use, we analysed difference of differences between propensity score-matched groups of secure patient–clinician email users and non-users for utilisation 1–12 months before and 7–18 months after first email (users) or a randomly assigned index date (non-users). Setting US integrated healthcare delivery system. Participants 9345 adults with first secure email use between July 2011 and July 2012 and continuous enrolment for ≥30 months and 9345 adults without secure email use between July 2010 and July 2012 matched to users on demographics, health status, and baseline utilisation. Primary Outcome Measures Rates of office visits, patient-initiated phone calls, scheduled telephone visits, after-hours clinic visits, emergency department visits, and hospitalisations. Results After controlling for multiple factors, no statistically significant differences in utilisation between secure email users and non-users occurred. Utilisation transiently increased by 88–237% around first email use. Annual rates of patient-initiated phone calls decreased among secure email users, 0.2 fewer calls per person (95% CI −0.3 to −0.1), from a mean of 4.1 calls per person 1–12 months before first use to a mean of 3.8 calls per person 7–18 months after first use. Rates of patient-initiated phone calls also decreased among non-users, 0.1 fewer calls per person (95% CI −0.2 to 0.0), from a mean of 4.2 calls per person 1–12 months before the index date to mean of 4.1 calls per person 7–18 months after the index date. Conclusions Compared with non-users, patient use of secure email with clinicians was not associated with statistically significant differences in clinical services utilisation 7–18

  18. Direct costs of glaucoma and severity of the disease: a multinational long term study of resource utilisation in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Traverso, C E; Walt, J G; Kelly, S P; Hommer, A H; Bron, A M; Denis, P; Nordmann, J-P; Renard, J-P; Bayer, A; Grehn, F; Pfeiffer, N; Cedrone, C; Gandolfi, S; Orzalesi, N; Nucci, C; Rossetti, L; Azuara-Blanco, A; Bagnis, A; Hitchings, R; Salmon, J F; Bricola, G; Buchholz, P M; Kotak, S V; Katz, L M; Siegartel, L R; Doyle, J J

    2005-01-01

    Background: Resource utilisation and direct costs associated with glaucoma progression in Europe are unknown. As population progressively ages, the economic impact of the disease will increase. Methods: From a total of 1655 consecutive cases, the records of 194 patients were selected and stratified by disease severity. Record selection was based on diagnoses of primary open angle glaucoma, glaucoma suspect, ocular hypertension, or normal tension glaucoma; 5 years minimum follow up were required. Glaucoma severity was assessed using a six stage glaucoma staging system based on static threshold visual field parameters. Resource utilisation data were abstracted from the charts and unit costs were applied to estimate direct costs to the payer. Resource utilisation and estimated direct cost of treatment, per person year, were calculated. Results: A statistically significant increasing linear trend (p = 0.018) in direct cost as disease severity worsened was demonstrated. The direct cost of treatment increased by an estimated €86 for each incremental step ranging from €455 per person year for stage 0 to €969 per person year for stage 4 disease. Medication costs ranged from 42% to 56% of total direct cost for all stages of disease. Conclusions: These results demonstrate for the first time in Europe that resource utilisation and direct medical costs of glaucoma management increase with worsening disease severity. Based on these findings, managing glaucoma and effectively delaying disease progression would be expected to significantly reduce the economic burden of this disease. These data are relevant to general practitioners and healthcare administrators who have a direct influence on the distribution of resources. PMID:16170109

  19. Distance and utilisation of out-of-hours services in a Norwegian urban/rural district: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Long travel distances limit the utilisation of health services. We wanted to examine the relationship between the utilisation of a Norwegian out-of-hours service and the distance from the municipality population centroid to the associated casualty clinic. Methods All first contacts from ten municipalities in Arendal out-of-hours district were registered from 2007 through 2011. The main outcomes were contact and consultation rates for each municipality for each year. The associations between main outcomes and distance from the population centroid of the participating municipalities to the casualty clinic and were examined by linear regression. Demographic and socioeconomic factors were included in multivariate linear regression. Secondary endpoints include association between distance and rates of different first actions taken and priority grades assessed by triage nurses. Age and gender specific subgroup analyses were performed. Results 141 342 contacts were included in the analyses. Increasing distance was associated with marked lower rates of all contact types except telephone consultations by doctor. Moving 43 kilometres away from the casualty clinic led to a 50 per cent drop in the rate of face-to-face consultations with a doctor. Availability of primary care doctors and education level contributed to a limited extent to the variance in consultation rate. The rates of all priority grades decreased significantly with increasing distance. The rate of acute events was reduced by 22 per cent when moving 50 kilometres away. The proportion of patients above 66 years increased with increasing distance, while the proportion of 13- to 19 year olds decreased. The proportion of female patients decreased with increasing distance. Conclusions The results confirm that increasing distance is associated with lower utilisation of out-of-hours services, even for the most acute cases. Extremely long distances might compromise patient safety. This must be taken into

  20. Dietary nutrient composition affects digestible energy utilisation for growth: a study on Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) and a literature comparison across fish species.

    PubMed

    Schrama, J W; Saravanan, S; Geurden, I; Heinsbroek, L T N; Kaushik, S J; Verreth, J A J

    2012-07-01

    The effect of the type of non-protein energy (NPE) on energy utilisation in Nile tilapia was studied, focusing on digestible energy utilisation for growth (k(gDE)). Furthermore, literature data on k(gDE) across fish species were analysed in order to evaluate the effect of dietary macronutrient composition. A total of twelve groups of fish were assigned in a 2 × 2 factorial design: two diets ('fat' v. 'starch') and two feeding levels ('low' v. 'high'). In the 'fat'-diet, 125 g fish oil and in the 'starch'-diet 300 g maize starch were added to 875 g of an identical basal mixture. Fish were fed restrictively one of two ration levels ('low' or 'high') for estimating k(gDE). Nutrient digestibility, N and energy balances were measured. For estimating k(gDE), data of the present study were combined with previous data of Nile tilapia fed similar diets to satiation. The type of NPE affected k(gDE) (0.561 and 0.663 with the 'starch' and 'fat'-diets, respectively; P < 0.001). Across fish species, literature values of k(gDE) range from 0.31 to 0.82. Variability in k(gDE) was related to dietary macronutrient composition, the trophic level of the fish species and the composition of growth (fat:protein gain ratio). The across-species comparison suggested that the relationships of k(gDE) with trophic level and with growth composition were predominantly induced by dietary macronutrient composition. Reported k(gDE) values increased linearly with increasing dietary fat content and decreasing dietary carbohydrate content. In contrast, k(gDE) related curvilinearly to dietary crude protein content. In conclusion, energy utilisation for growth is influenced by dietary macronutrient composition.

  1. Early primary care physician contact and health service utilisation in a large sample of recently released ex-prisoners in Australia: prospective cohort study

    PubMed Central

    Arnold-Reed, Diane; Preen, David; Bulsara, Max; Lennox, Nick; Kinner, Stuart A

    2015-01-01

    Objective To describe the association between ex-prisoner primary care physician contact within 1 month of prison release and health service utilisation in the 6 months following release. Design A cohort from the Passports study with a mean follow-up of 219 (±44) days postrelease. Associations were assessed using a multivariate Andersen-Gill model, controlling for a range of other factors. Setting Face-to-face, baseline interviews were conducted in a sample of prisoners within 6 weeks of expected release from seven prisons in Queensland, Australia, from 2008 to 2010, with telephone follow-up interviews 1, 3 and 6 months postrelease. Participants From an original population-based sample of 1325 sentenced adult (≥18 years) prisoners, 478 participants were excluded due to not being released from prison during follow-up (n=7, 0.5%), loss to follow-up (n=257, 19.4%), or lacking exposure data (n=214, 16.2%). A total of 847 (63.9%) participants were included in the analyses. Exposure Primary care physician contact within 1 month of follow-up as a dichotomous measure. Main outcome measures Adjusted time-to-event hazard rates for hospital, mental health, alcohol and other drug and subsequent primary care physician service utilisations assessed as multiple failure time-interval data. Results Primary care physician contact prevalence within 1 month of follow-up was 46.5%. One-month primary care physician contact was positively associated with hospital (adjusted HR (AHR)=2.07; 95% CI 1.39 to 3.09), mental health (AHR=1.65; 95% CI 1.24 to 2.19), alcohol and other drug (AHR=1.48; 95% CI 1.15 to 1.90) and subsequent primary care physician service utilisation (AHR=1.47; 95% CI 1.26 to 1.72) over 6 months of follow-up. Conclusions Engagement with primary care physician services soon after prison release increases health service utilisation during the critical community transition period for ex-prisoners. Trial registration number Australian New Zealand Clinical

  2. Health service utilisation for anogenital warts in Ontario, Canada prior to the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine programme introduction: a retrospective longitudinal population-based study

    PubMed Central

    Guerra, Fiona M; Rosella, Laura C; Dunn, Sheila; Wilson, Sarah E; Chen, Cynthia; Deeks, Shelley L

    2016-01-01

    Objective Trends in occurrence of anogenital warts (AGWs) can provide early evidence of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination programme impact on preventing HPV infection and HPV-induced lesions. The objective of this study was to provide a baseline of AGW epidemiology in Ontario prior to the introduction of the publicly-funded school-based HPV vaccination programme in September 2007. Setting and participants As a retrospective longitudinal population-based study, we used health administrative data as a proxy to estimate incident AGWs and total health service utilisation (HSU) for AGWs for all Ontario residents 15 years and older with valid health cards between 1 April 2003 and 31 March 2007. Outcome measures The outcome of interest was AGW healthcare utilisation identified using the International Classification of Diseases, 10th revision (ICD-10) diagnostic code for AGWs, as well as an algorithm for identifying AGW physician office visits in a database with a unique system of diagnostic and procedural codes. An AGW case was considered incident if preceded by 12 months without HSU for AGWs. Time trends by age group and sex were analysed. Results Between fiscal years 2003 and 2006, we identified 123 247 health service visits for AGWs by 51 436 Ontario residents 15 years and older. Incident AGWs peaked in females and males in the 21–23 year age group, at 3.74 per 1000 and 2.81 per 1000, respectively. HSU for AGWs peaked in females and males within the 21–23 year age group, at 9.34 per 1000 and 7.22 per 1000, respectively. Conclusions To the best of our knowledge, this is the first population-based study of AGW incidence and HSU in Ontario. The sex and age distribution of individuals with incident and prevalent AGWs in Ontario was similar to that of other provinces before HPV vaccine programme implementation in Canada. PMID:26966057

  3. The experience of palliative patients and their families of a family meeting utilised as an instrument for spiritual and psychosocial care: A qualitative study

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background This study explores the experience of palliative patients and their family members of a family meeting model, utilised as an instrument for the provision of spiritual and psychosocial care. In doing so the study embraces a broad understanding of spirituality which may or may not include formal religious practice and a concept of psychosocial care that includes: social and emotional well-being, communication, self esteem, mental health and adaptation to illness. The meeting of spiritual and psychosocial needs is considered to be an important aspect of palliative care. Methods This qualitative study, philosophically underpinned by hermeneutic phenomenology, investigates the participatory experience of palliative care patients and their significant family members of such a family meeting. People registered with two large metropolitan palliative care services, who met selection criteria, were referred by medical staff. Twelve of the 66 referred took part in family meetings which also included significant others invited by the patient. A total of 36 family members participated. The number of participants of individual family meetings ranged from two to eleven. After the family meeting every participant was invited to take part in an individual in-depth interview about their experience of the meeting. Forty seven interviews were conducted. These were audio recorded and transcribed. Results Data analysis, utilising Ricoeur's theory of interpretation, revealed seven main themes: personal experience of the meeting, personal outcomes, observation of others' experience, observation of experience and outcomes for the family unit, meeting facilitation, how it could have been different and general applicability of the family meeting. Throughout these themes were numerous references to aspects of the web of relationships which describe the concept of spirituality as it is defined for the purpose of this study. Conclusions The findings indicate the potential of the type

  4. Synthesis and biological evaluation of novel N-substituted 1H-dibenzo[a,c]carbazole derivatives of dehydroabietic acid as potential antimicrobial agents.

    PubMed

    Gu, Wen; Qiao, Chao; Wang, Shi-Fa; Hao, Yun; Miao, Ting-Ting

    2014-01-01

    A series of new N-substituted 1H-dibenzo[a,c]carbazole derivatives were synthesized from dehydroabietic acid, and their structures were characterized by IR, (1)H NMR and HRMS spectral data. All compounds were evaluated for their antibacterial and antifungal activities against four bacteria (Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas fluorescens) and three fungi (Candida albicans, Candida tropicalis and Aspergillus niger) by serial dilution technique. Some of the synthesized compounds displayed pronounced antimicrobial activity against tested strains with low MIC values ranging from 0.9 to 15.6μg/ml. Among them, compounds 6j and 6r exhibited potent inhibitory activity comparable to reference drugs amikacin and ketoconazole. PMID:24300736

  5. Bed Utilisation in an Irish Regional Paediatric Unit – A Cross-Sectional Study Using the Paediatric Appropriateness Evaluation Protocol (PAEP)

    PubMed Central

    ÓhAiseadha, Coilín; Mannix, Mai; Saunders, Jean; Philip, Roy K.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Increasing demand for limited healthcare resources raises questions about appropriate use of inpatient beds. In the first paediatric bed utilisation study at a regional university centre in Ireland, we conducted a cross-sectional study to audit the utilisation of inpatient beds at the Regional Paediatric Unit (RPU) in University Hospital Limerick (UHL), Limerick, Ireland and also examined hospital activity data, to make recommendations for optimal use of inpatient resources. Methods: We used a questionnaire based on the paediatric appropriateness evaluation protocol (PAEP), modified and validated for use in the United Kingdom, to prospectively gather data regarding reasons for admission and for ongoing care after 2 days, from case records for all inpatients during 11 days in February (winter) and 7 days in May–June (summer). We conducted bivariate and multivariate analysis to explore associations between failure to meet PAEP criteria and patient attributes including age, gender, admission outside of office hours, arrival by ambulance, and private health insurance. Inpatient bed occupancy and day ward activity were also scrutinised. Results: Mean bed occupancy was 84.1%. In all, 12/355 (3.4%, 95% CI: 1.5%–5.3%) of children failed to meet PAEP admission criteria, and 27/189 (14.3%, 95% CI: 9.3%–19.3%) who were still inpatients after 2 days failed to meet criteria for ongoing care. 35/355 (9.9%, 95% CI: 6.8%–13.0%) of admissions fulfilled only the PAEP criterion for intravenous medications or fluid replacement. A logistic regression model constructed by forward selection identified a significant association between failure to meet PAEP criteria for ongoing care 2 days after admission and admission during office hours (08.00–17.59) (P = .020), and a marginally significant association between this outcome and arrival by ambulance (P = .054). Conclusion: At a mean bed occupancy of 84.1%, an Irish RPU can achieve 96.6% appropriate admissions

  6. Utilising a Collaborative Macro-Script to Enhance Student Engagement: A Mixed Method Study in a 3D Virtual Environment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bouta, Hara; Retalis, Symeon; Paraskeva, Fotini

    2012-01-01

    This study examines the effect of using an online 3D virtual environment in teaching Mathematics in Primary Education. In particular, it explores the extent to which student engagement--behavioral, affective and cognitive--is fostered by such tools in order to enhance collaborative learning. For the study we used a purpose-created 3D virtual…

  7. Influence of CT utilisation on patient flow in the emergency department: a retrospective 1-year cohort study

    PubMed Central

    Li, Chao-Jui; Syue, Yuan-Jhen; Lin, Yan-Ren; Cheng, Hsien-Hung; Cheng, Fu-Jen; Tsai, Tsung-Cheng; Chen, Kuan-Fu; Lee, Chien-Hung

    2016-01-01

    Objective CT, an important diagnostic tool in the emergency department (ED), might increase the ED length of stay (LOS). Considering the issue of ED overcrowding, it is important to evaluate whether CT use delays or facilitates patient disposition in the ED. Design A retrospective 1-year cohort study. Setting 5 EDs within the same healthcare system dispersed nationwide in Taiwan. Participants All adult non-trauma patients who visited the 5 EDs from 1 July 2011 to 30 June 2012. Interventions Patients were grouped by whether or not they underwent a CT scan (CT and non-CT groups, respectively). Primary and secondary outcome measures The ED LOS and hospital LOS between patients who had and had not undergone CT scans were compared by stratifying different dispositions and diagnoses. Results CT use prolonged patient ED LOS among those who were directly discharged from the ED. Among patients admitted to the observation unit and then discharged, patients diagnosed with nervous system disease had shorter ED LOS if they underwent a CT scan. CT use facilitated patient admission to the general ward. CT use also accelerated patients' admission to the intensive care unit (ICU) for patients with nervous system disease, neoplasm and digestive disease. Finally, patients admitted to the general wards had shorter hospital LOS if they underwent CT scans in the ED. Conclusions CT use did not seem to have delayed patient disposition in ED. While CT use facilitated patient disposition if they were finally hospitalised, it mildly prolonged ED LOS in cases of patients discharged from the ED. PMID:27147387

  8. Primary care access and its relationship with emergency department utilisation: an observational, cross-sectional, ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Harris, Matthew J; Patel, Brijesh; Bowen, Simon

    2011-01-01

    Background Recent health service policies in the UK have focused on improving primary care access in order to reduce the use of costly emergency department services, even though the relationship between the two is based on weak or little evidence. Research is required to establish whether improving primary care access can influence emergency department attendance. Aim To ascertain whether a relationship exists between the degree of access to GP practices and avoidable emergency department attendances in an inner-London primary care trust (PCT). Design and setting Observational, cross-sectional ecological study in 68 general practices in Brent Primary Care Trust, north London, UK. Method GP practices were used as the unit of analysis and avoidable emergency department attendance as the dependent variable. Routinely collected data from GP practices, Hospital Episode Statistics, and census data for the period covering 2007–2009 were used across three broad domains: GP access characteristics, population characteristics, and health status aggregated to the level of the GP practice. Multiple linear regression was used to ascertain which variables account for the variation in emergency department attendance experienced by patients registered to each GP practice. Results None of the GP access variables accounted for the variation in emergency department attendance. The only variable that explained this variance was the Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD). For every unit increase in IMD score of the GP practice, there would be an increase of 6.13 (95% CI = 4.56, 7.70) per 1000 patients per year in emergency department attendances. This accounted for 47.9% of the variance in emergency department attendances in Brent. Conclusion Avoidable emergency department attendance appears to be mostly driven by underlying deprivation rather than by the degree of access to primary care. PMID:22137415

  9. Utilisation of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) practitioners within maternity care provision: results from a nationally representative cohort study of 1,835 pregnant women

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background There is little known about women’s concurrent use of conventional and complementary health care during pregnancy, particularly consultation patterns with complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). This study examines health service utilisation among pregnant women including consultations with obstetricians, midwives, general practitioners (GPs) and CAM practitioners. Methods A sub-study of pregnant women (n=2445) was undertaken from the nationally-representative Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health (ALSWH). Women’s consultations with conventional practitioners (obstetricians, GPs and midwives) and CAM practitioners for pregnancy-related health conditions were analysed. The analysis included Pearson chi-square tests to compare categorical variables. Results The survey was completed by 1835 women (response rate = 79.2%). A substantial number (49.4%) of respondents consulted with a CAM practitioner for pregnancy-related health conditions. Many participants consulted only with a CAM practitioner for assistance with certain conditions such as neck pain (74.6%) and sciatica (40.4%). Meanwhile, women consulted both CAM practitioners and conventional maternity health professionals (obstetricians, midwives and GPs) for back pain (61.8%) and gestational diabetes (22.2%). Women visiting a general practitioner (GP) 3–4 times for pregnancy care were more likely to consult with acupuncturists compared with those consulting a GP less often (p=<0.001, x2=20.5). Women who had more frequent visits to a midwife were more likely to have consulted with an acupuncturist (p=<0.001, x2=18.9) or a doula (p=<0.001, x2=23.2) than those visiting midwives less frequently for their pregnancy care. Conclusions The results emphasise the necessity for a considered and collaborative approach to interactions between pregnant women, conventional maternity health providers and CAM practitioners to accommodate appropriate information transferral and co

  10. Estimation of the real population and its impact on the utilisation of healthcare services in Mediterranean resort regions: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Perea-Milla, Emilio; Pons, Sergi Mari; Rivas-Ruiz, Francisco; Gallofre, Anna; Jurado, Enrique Navarro; Ales, Marco A Navarro; Jimenez-Puente, Alberto; Fernandez-Nieto, Fidel; Cerda, Joan C March; Carrasco, Manuel; Martin, Lydia; Cano, Damian Lopez; Gutierrez, Gonzalo E; Macías, Rafael Cortes; Garcia-Ruiz, Jose A

    2007-01-01

    Background The demographic structure has a significant influence on the use of healthcare services, as does the size of the population denominators. Very few studies have been published on methods for estimating the real population such as tourist resorts. The lack of information about these problems means there is a corresponding lack of information about the behaviour of populational denominators (the floating population or tourist load) and the effect of this on the use of healthcare services. The objectives of the study were: a) To determine the Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) ratio, per person per day, among populations of known size; b) to estimate, by means of this ratio, the real population in an area where tourist numbers are very significant; and c) to determine the impact on the utilisation of hospital emergency healthcare services of the registered population, in comparison to the non-resident population, in two areas where tourist numbers are very significant. Methods An ecological study design was employed. We analysed the Healthcare Districts of the Costa del Sol and the island of Menorca. Both are Spanish territories in the Mediterranean region. Results In the two areas analysed, the correlation coefficient between the MSW ratio and admissions to hospital emergency departments exceeded 0.9, with p < 0.001. On the basis of MSW generation ratios, obtained for a control zone and also measured in neighbouring countries, we estimated the real population. For the summer months, when tourist activity is greatest and demand for emergency healthcare at hospitals is highest, this value was found to be double that of the registered population. Conclusion The MSW indicator, which is both ecological and indirect, can be used to estimate the real population in areas where population levels vary significantly during the year. This parameter is of interest in planning and dimensioning the provision of healthcare services. PMID:17266744

  11. Modelling the Factors that Affect Individuals' Utilisation of Online Learning Systems: An Empirical Study Combining the Task Technology Fit Model with the Theory of Planned Behaviour

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yu, Tai-Kuei; Yu, Tai-Yi

    2010-01-01

    Understanding learners' behaviour, perceptions and influence in terms of learner performance is crucial to predict the use of electronic learning systems. By integrating the task-technology fit (TTF) model and the theory of planned behaviour (TPB), this paper investigates the online learning utilisation of Taiwanese students. This paper provides a…

  12. Generalised anxiety disorder symptoms and utilisation of health care services. A cross-sectional study from the “Northern Finland 1966 Birth Cohort”

    PubMed Central

    Kujanpää, Tero; Jokelainen, Jari; Auvinen, Juha; Timonen, Markku

    2016-01-01

    Objective To analyse the utilization of health care services of people who tested positive for GAD compared to those who tested negative. Setting A cross-sectional study from the Northern Finland 1966 Birth Cohort. Subjects A total of 10,282 members followed from birth in a longitudinal study were asked to participate in a follow-up survey at the age of 46. As part of this survey they filled in questionnaries concerning health care utilization and their illness history as well as the GAD-7 screening tool. Althogether 5,480 cohort members responded to the questionnaries. Main outcome measures Number of visits in different health care services among people who tested positive for GAD with the GAD-7 screening tool compared to those who tested negative. Results People who tested positive for GAD had 112% more total health care visits, 74% more total physician visits, 115% more visits to health centres, 133% more health centre physician visits, 160% more visits to secondary care, and 775% more mental health care visits than those who tested negative. Conclusion People with GAD symptoms utilize health care services more than other people. Key PointsGeneralised anxiety disorder (GAD) is a common but poorly identified mental health problem in primary care.People who tested positive for GAD utilise more health care services than those who tested negative.About 58% of people who tested positive for GAD had visited their primary care physician during the past year.Only 29% of people who tested positive for GAD had used mental health services during the past year. PMID:27054674

  13. Effect of telehealth on hospital utilisation and mortality in routine clinical practice: a matched control cohort study in an early adopter site

    PubMed Central

    Steventon, Adam; Ariti, Cono; Fisher, Elizabeth; Bardsley, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To assess the effects of a home-based telehealth intervention on the use of secondary healthcare and mortality. Design Observational study of a mainstream telehealth service, using person-level administrative data. Time to event analysis (Cox regression) was performed comparing telehealth patients with controls who were matched using a machine-learning algorithm. Setting A predominantly rural region of England (North Yorkshire). Participants 716 telehealth patients were recruited from community, general practice and specialist acute care, between June 2010 and March 2013. Patients had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure or diabetes, and a history of associated inpatient admission. Patients were matched 1:1 to control patients, also selected from North Yorkshire, with respect to demographics, diagnoses of health conditions, previous hospital use and predictive risk score. Interventions Telehealth involved the remote exchange of medical data between patients and healthcare professionals as part of the ongoing management of the patient's health condition. Monitoring centre staff alerted healthcare professionals if the telemonitored data exceeded preset thresholds. Control patients received usual care, without telehealth. Primary and secondary outcome measures Time to the first emergency (unplanned) hospital admission or death. Secondary metrics included time to death and time to first admission, outpatient attendance and emergency department visit. Results Matched controls and telehealth patients were similar at baseline. Following enrolment, telehealth patients were more likely than matched controls to experience emergency admission or death (adjusted HR 1.34, 95% CI 1.16 to 1.56, p<0.001). They were also more likely to have outpatient attendances (adjusted HR=1.25, 1.11 to 1.40, p<0.001), but mortality rates were similar between groups. Sensitivity analyses showed that we were unlikely to have missed reductions in the

  14. Effect of Paying for Performance on Utilisation, Quality, and User Costs of Health Services in Tanzania: A Controlled Before and After Study

    PubMed Central

    Binyaruka, Peter; Patouillard, Edith; Powell-Jackson, Timothy; Greco, Giulia; Maestad, Ottar; Borghi, Josephine

    2015-01-01

    Background Despite widespread implementation across Africa, there is limited evidence of the effect of payment for performance (P4P) schemes in low income countries on the coverage of quality services and affordability, consistent with universal health coverage objectives. We examined the effect of a government P4P scheme on utilisation, quality, and user costs of health services in Tanzania. Methods We evaluated the effects of a P4P scheme on utilisation of all maternal and child immunization services targeted by the scheme, and non-targeted general outpatient service use. We also evaluated effects on patient satisfaction with care and clinical content of antenatal care, and user costs. The evaluation was done in 150 facilities across all 7 intervention districts and 4 comparison districts with two rounds of data collection over 13-months in January 2012 and February 2013. We sampled 3000 households of women who had delivered in the 12 months prior to interview; 1500 patients attending health facilities for targeted and non-targeted services at each round of data collection. Difference-in-difference regression analysis was employed. Findings We estimated a significant positive effect on two out of eight targeted indicators. There was an 8.2% (95% CI: 3.6% to 12.8%) increase in coverage of institutional deliveries among women in the intervention area, and a 10.3% (95% CI: 4.4% to 16.1%) increase in the provision of anti-malarials during pregnancy. Use of non-targeted services reduced at dispensaries by 57.5 visits per month among children under five (95% CI: -110.2 to -4.9) and by 90.8 visits per month for those aged over five (95% CI: -156.5 to -25.2). There was no evidence of an effect of P4P on patient experience of care for targeted services. There was a 0.05 (95% CI: 0.01 to 0.10) increase in the patient satisfaction score for non-targeted services. P4P was associated with a 5.0% reduction in those paying out of pocket for deliveries (95% CI: -9.3% to -0

  15. Hospital Utilisation in Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Infants under 12 Months of Age in Western Australia, Prospective Population Based Data Linkage Study

    PubMed Central

    McAullay, Daniel; Strobel, Natalie A.; Marriott, Rhonda; Atkinson, David N.; Marley, Julia V.; Stanley, Fiona J.

    2016-01-01

    Background Indigenous infants (infants aged under 12 months) have the highest hospital admission and emergency department presentation risks in Australia. However, there have been no recent reports comparing hospital utilisation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous infants. Methods Our primary objective was to use a large prospective population-based linked dataset to assess the risk of all-cause hospital admission and emergency department presentation in Indigenous compared to non-Indigenous infants in Western Australia (WA). Secondary objectives were to assess the effect of socio-economic status (Index of Relative Socio-Economic Disadvantage [IRSD]) on hospital utilisation and to understand the causes of hospital utilisation. Findings There were 3,382 (5.4%) Indigenous and 59,583 (94.6%) non-Indigenous live births in WA from 1 January 2010 to 31 December 2011. Indigenous infants had a greater risk of hospital admission (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 1.90, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.77–2.04, p = <0.001) and emergency department presentation (aOR 2.15, 95% CI 1.98–2.33, p = <0.001) compared to non-Indigenous infants. Fifty nine percent (59.0%) of admissions in Indigenous children were classified as preventable compared to 31.2% of admissions in non-Indigenous infants (aOR 2.12, 95% CI 1.88–2.39). The risk of hospital admission in the most disadvantaged (IRSD 1) infants in the total cohort (35.7%) was similar to the risk in the least disadvantaged (IRSD 5) infants (30.6%) (aOR 1.04, 95% CI 0.96–1.13, p = 0.356). Interpretation WA Indigenous infants have much higher hospital utilisation than non Indigenous infants. WA health services should prioritise Indigenous infants regardless of their socio economic status or where they live. PMID:27120331

  16. Utilisation of rheumatology care services in Germany: the case of physical therapy and self-help groups

    PubMed Central

    Thieme, Holm; Borgetto, Bernhard

    2012-01-01

    Physical Therapy (PT) and self-help groups (SHG) are important components of health care in rheumatic diseases. The utilisation of PT and SHG by patients with rheumatic diseases may be influenced by several factors. The aim of this study is to summarize the evidence on PT and SHG utilisation of patients with rheumatic diseases in Germany. We systematically searched the MEDLINE-database for studies that evaluated the utilisation and factors that possibly influence the utilisation of PT and SHG. Eight studies were found for PT-utilisation and one for SHG-utilisation. Between 25 and 59 percent of patients with rheumatic diseases received PT services. Several individual and contextual factors that may influence the utilisation could be identified. In conclusion, evidence exists for wide variations in the utilisation of PT services and an underuse of such services among patients with rheumatic diseases in Germany. By contrast, little evidence exists on the utilisation of SHG. PMID:23133502

  17. Utilisation of thorium in reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anantharaman, K.; Shivakumar, V.; Saha, D.

    2008-12-01

    India's nuclear programme envisages a large-scale utilisation of thorium, as it has limited deposits of uranium but vast deposits of thorium. The large-scale utilisation of thorium requires the adoption of closed fuel cycle. The stable nature of thoria and the radiological issues associated with thoria poses challenges in the adoption of a closed fuel cycle. A thorium fuel based Advanced Heavy Water Reactor (AHWR) is being planned to provide impetus to development of technologies for the closed thorium fuel cycle. Thoria fuel has been loaded in Indian reactors and test irradiations have been carried out with (Th-Pu) MOX fuel. Irradiated thorium assemblies have been reprocessed and the separated 233U fuel has been used for test reactor KAMINI. The paper highlights the Indian experience with the use of thorium and brings out various issues associated with the thorium cycle.

  18. An ARXPS and ERXPS study of quaternary ammonium and phosphonium ionic liquids: utilising a high energy Ag Lα' X-ray source.

    PubMed

    Blundell, Rebecca K; Delorme, Astrid E; Smith, Emily F; Licence, Peter

    2016-02-17

    A series of ammonium- and phosphonium-based ionic liquids have been probed using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) with a high energy Ag Lα' X-ray source. The capability of the Ag Lα' X-ray source for ionic liquid analysis is confirmed alongside the characterisation of previously undetected high energy core photoelectron emissions. Additionally, the utilisation of the Ag Lα' X-ray source as a depth profiling technique (ERXPS) to investigate the structure of the ionic liquid/vacuum interface has been demonstrated, with comparison made to angle resolved X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (ARXPS).

  19. Good Practice Chaplaincy: An Exploratory Study Identifying the Appropriate Skills, Attitudes and Practices for the Selection, Training and Utilisation of Chaplains.

    PubMed

    Carey, Lindsay B; Rumbold, Bruce

    2015-08-01

    This article presents an overview of exploratory research regarding the skills, knowledge, attitudes and practices considered necessary for chaplains to be highly competent in providing holistic care to clients and staff. Utilising a qualitative methodology, two focus groups comprising Salvation Army chaplains and their managers provided data about their expectations of chaplaincy personnel and about the pastoral care interventions undertaken by chaplains. The results indicated that while there were some differences in opinion, nevertheless, in overall terms, there was general agreement between chaplains and their managers about particular personal and professional qualities necessary for chaplains to be considered appropriate and proficient. Evidence was also obtained indicating a need for change with regard to the organisational attitude and culture of The Salvation Army towards chaplaincy. Recommendations are presented concerning (1) the selection criteria for chaplaincy, (2) training and utilisation of chaplains plus (3) issues relating to organizational cultural change necessary to develop a future-ready chaplaincy more suitable for the twenty-first century. PMID:25371346

  20. Good Practice Chaplaincy: An Exploratory Study Identifying the Appropriate Skills, Attitudes and Practices for the Selection, Training and Utilisation of Chaplains.

    PubMed

    Carey, Lindsay B; Rumbold, Bruce

    2015-08-01

    This article presents an overview of exploratory research regarding the skills, knowledge, attitudes and practices considered necessary for chaplains to be highly competent in providing holistic care to clients and staff. Utilising a qualitative methodology, two focus groups comprising Salvation Army chaplains and their managers provided data about their expectations of chaplaincy personnel and about the pastoral care interventions undertaken by chaplains. The results indicated that while there were some differences in opinion, nevertheless, in overall terms, there was general agreement between chaplains and their managers about particular personal and professional qualities necessary for chaplains to be considered appropriate and proficient. Evidence was also obtained indicating a need for change with regard to the organisational attitude and culture of The Salvation Army towards chaplaincy. Recommendations are presented concerning (1) the selection criteria for chaplaincy, (2) training and utilisation of chaplains plus (3) issues relating to organizational cultural change necessary to develop a future-ready chaplaincy more suitable for the twenty-first century.

  1. Health care resource utilisation in primary care prior to and after a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease: a retrospective, matched case–control study in the United Kingdom

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background This study examined medical resource utilisation patterns in the United Kingdom (UK) prior to and following Alzheimer’s disease (AD) diagnosis. Methods A patient cohort aged 65 years and older with newly diagnosed AD between January 2008 and December 2010 was identified through the UK’s Clinical Practice Research Datalink (CPRD). Patients with a continuous record in the CPRD (formerly the General Practice Research Database [GPRD]) for both the 3 years prior to, and the 1 year following, AD diagnosis were eligible for inclusion. A control cohort was identified by matching general older adult (GOA) patients to patients with AD based on year of birth, gender, region, and Charlson Comorbidity Index at a ratio of 2:1. Medical resource utilisation was calculated in 6-month intervals over the 4-year study period. Comparisons between AD and GOA control cohorts were conducted using conditional logistic regression for patient characteristics and a generalised linear model for resource utilisation. Results Data for the AD cohort (N = 3,896) and matched GOA control cohort (N = 7,792) were extracted from the CPRD. The groups were 65% female and the AD cohort had a mean age of 79.9 years (standard deviation 6.5 years) at the date of diagnosis. Over the entire study period, the AD cohort had a significantly higher mean primary care consultation rate than the GOA cohort (p < .0001). While the GOA cohort primary care consultation rate gradually increased over the 4-year period (ranging from 5 to 7 consultations per 6-month period), increases were more pronounced in the AD cohort (ranging from 6 to 11 consultations per 6-month period, peaking during the 6-month periods immediately prior to and post diagnosis). The AD cohort also had a higher overall specialty referral rate than the GOA cohort over the 4-year period (37% vs. 25%, respectively; p < .0001); the largest difference was during the 6 months immediately prior to AD diagnosis (17% vs. 5

  2. Folic acid utilisation related to sulfa drug resistance in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Bayly, A M; Berglez, J M; Patel, O; Castelli, L A; Hankins, E G; Coloe, P; Hopkins Sibley, C; Macreadie, I G

    2001-11-13

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae mutants deficient in folate synthesis have been constructed and employed to study the utilisation of exogenous folates in yeast. One mutant specifically lacked dihydropteroate synthase while the second lacked dihydrofolate synthase. Exogenous folinic acid restored optimal growth to both strains. Folic acid did not generally rescue growth but spontaneous isolates capable of utilising folic acid were selected. The folic acid synthesis pathway in the folate utilising isolates was restored via transformation with FOL1 or FOL3 expression plasmids and transformants were tested for resistance to sulfamethoxazole (SMX). The presence of elevated levels of folic acid led to greatly reduced SMX sensitivity regardless of whether strains were folate utilisers or not.

  3. Factors influencing the utilisation of health services by rural men.

    PubMed

    Buckley, Dermot; Lower, Tony

    2002-01-01

    This research identified the barriers and enablers that influence the utilisation of health services by rural men in the Midwest region of Western Australia. The methodology was based on participatory action research, including qualitative assessments to determine the issues for a larger quantitative study. Four variables were identified as predictors for the use of health services: those who attended for preventive reasons; those not affected by seasonal work; men who thought a medical telephone line was not important; and those who did not consider privacy an important issue. Modification of health service delivery to men could potentially enhance appropriate utilisation of health services in rural areas.

  4. Environmental assessment of incinerator residue utilisation.

    PubMed

    Toller, S; Kärrman, E; Gustafsson, J P; Magnusson, Y

    2009-07-01

    Incineration ashes may be treated either as a waste to be dumped in landfill, or as a resource that is suitable for re-use. In order to choose the best management scenario, knowledge is needed on the potential environmental impact that may be expected, including not only local, but also regional and global impact. In this study, A life cycle assessment (LCA) based approach was outlined for environmental assessment of incinerator residue utilisation, in which leaching of trace elements as well as other emissions to air and water and the use of resources were regarded as constituting the potential environmental impact from the system studied. Case studies were performed for two selected ash types, bottom ash from municipal solid waste incineration (MSWI) and wood fly ash. The MSWI bottom ash was assumed to be suitable for road construction or as drainage material in landfill, whereas the wood fly ash was assumed to be suitable for road construction or as a nutrient resource to be recycled on forest land after biofuel harvesting. Different types of potential environmental impact predominated in the activities of the system and the use of natural resources and the trace element leaching were identified as being relatively important for the scenarios compared. The scenarios differed in use of resources and energy, whereas there is a potential for trace element leaching regardless of how the material is managed. Utilising MSWI bottom ash in road construction and recycling of wood ash on forest land saved more natural resources and energy than when these materials were managed according to the other scenarios investigated, including dumping in landfill. PMID:19362462

  5. Development of ultrasonic-assisted closed in-syringe extraction and derivatization for the determination of labile abietic acid and dehydroabietic acid in cosmetics.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jianjun; Liu, Mengge; Li, Xiu; Lu, Xiaomin; Chen, Guang; Sun, Zhiwei; Li, Guoliang; Zhao, Xianen; Zhang, Shijuan; Song, Cuihua; Wang, Hua; Suo, Yourui; You, Jinmao

    2014-12-01

    Two resin acids, abietic acid (AA) and dehydroabietic acid (DHAA), in cosmetics may cause allergy or toxicoderma, but remain inaccurately investigated due to their lability. In this work, an accurate, sensitive, efficient and convenient method, utilizing the ultrasonic-assisted closed in-syringe extraction and derivatization (UCSED) prior to high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled with fluorescence detection (FLD) and on-line tandem mass spectra (MS/MS), has been developed. Analytes are extracted by acetonitrile (10/1, v/m) in a sealed syringe under safe condition (60°C; 15 min; nitrogen atmosphere) and then in-syringe derivatized by 2-(2-(anthracen-10-yl)-1H-naphtho[2,3-d]imidazol-1-yl) ethyl-p-toluenesulfonate (ANITS) (8-fold, 93°C, 30 min, DMF as co-solvent, K2CO3 as catalyst). In UCSED, derivatization contributes to increase both analytical sensitivity and stability of analytes. Excellent linearity (r2≥0.9991) is achieved in wide range (75-3000 ng/mL (AA); 150-4500 ng/mL (DHAA)). Quite low detection limits (AA: 8.2-10.8 ng/mL; DHAA: 19.4-24.3 ng/mL) and limits of analyte concentration (LOAC) (AA: 30.0-44.5 ng/mL; DHAA: 70.9-86.7 ng/mL) ensure the trace analysis. This method is applied to the analysis of cosmetic samples, including depilatory wax strip, liquid foundation, mascara, eyeliner, eyebrow pencil and lip balm. No additional purification is required and no matrix effect is observed, demonstrating obvious advantages over conventional pretreatment such as solid phase extraction (SPE). Accuracy (RE: -3.2% to 2.51%), precision (RSD: 1.29-2.84%), recovery (95.20-103.63%; 95.51-104.22%) and repeatability (<0.23%; <2.87%) are significantly improved. Furthermore, this work plays a guiding role in developing a reasonable method for labile analytes. PMID:25456583

  6. Development of ultrasonic-assisted closed in-syringe extraction and derivatization for the determination of labile abietic acid and dehydroabietic acid in cosmetics.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jianjun; Liu, Mengge; Li, Xiu; Lu, Xiaomin; Chen, Guang; Sun, Zhiwei; Li, Guoliang; Zhao, Xianen; Zhang, Shijuan; Song, Cuihua; Wang, Hua; Suo, Yourui; You, Jinmao

    2014-12-01

    Two resin acids, abietic acid (AA) and dehydroabietic acid (DHAA), in cosmetics may cause allergy or toxicoderma, but remain inaccurately investigated due to their lability. In this work, an accurate, sensitive, efficient and convenient method, utilizing the ultrasonic-assisted closed in-syringe extraction and derivatization (UCSED) prior to high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled with fluorescence detection (FLD) and on-line tandem mass spectra (MS/MS), has been developed. Analytes are extracted by acetonitrile (10/1, v/m) in a sealed syringe under safe condition (60°C; 15 min; nitrogen atmosphere) and then in-syringe derivatized by 2-(2-(anthracen-10-yl)-1H-naphtho[2,3-d]imidazol-1-yl) ethyl-p-toluenesulfonate (ANITS) (8-fold, 93°C, 30 min, DMF as co-solvent, K2CO3 as catalyst). In UCSED, derivatization contributes to increase both analytical sensitivity and stability of analytes. Excellent linearity (r2≥0.9991) is achieved in wide range (75-3000 ng/mL (AA); 150-4500 ng/mL (DHAA)). Quite low detection limits (AA: 8.2-10.8 ng/mL; DHAA: 19.4-24.3 ng/mL) and limits of analyte concentration (LOAC) (AA: 30.0-44.5 ng/mL; DHAA: 70.9-86.7 ng/mL) ensure the trace analysis. This method is applied to the analysis of cosmetic samples, including depilatory wax strip, liquid foundation, mascara, eyeliner, eyebrow pencil and lip balm. No additional purification is required and no matrix effect is observed, demonstrating obvious advantages over conventional pretreatment such as solid phase extraction (SPE). Accuracy (RE: -3.2% to 2.51%), precision (RSD: 1.29-2.84%), recovery (95.20-103.63%; 95.51-104.22%) and repeatability (<0.23%; <2.87%) are significantly improved. Furthermore, this work plays a guiding role in developing a reasonable method for labile analytes.

  7. Ethnic Variation in Service Utilisation among Children with Intellectual Disability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dura-Vila, G.; Hodes, M.

    2009-01-01

    Background: This study examined whether service utilisation among children with intellectual disability (ID) varied by ethnic cultural group. Method: Survey carried out in four special schools in London. Information was provided by school teachers using case files, and 242 children aged 7 to 17 years with mild and moderate ID were identified.…

  8. Evaluating the impact of depression, anxiety & autonomic function on health related quality of life, vocational functioning and health care utilisation in acute coronary syndrome patients: the ADVENT study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Depression and anxiety are highly prevalent and co-morbid in acute coronary syndrome patients. Somatic and cognitive subtypes of depression and anxiety in acute coronary syndrome have been shown to be associated with mortality although their association with patient outcomes is unknown, as are the mechanisms that underpin these associations. We are conducting a prospective cohort study which aims to examine in acute coronary syndrome patients: (1) the role of somatic subtypes of depression and anxiety as predictors of health related quality of life outcomes; (2) how somatic subtypes of depression and anxiety relate to long term vocational functioning and healthcare utilisation; and (3) the role of the autonomic nervous system assessed by heart rate variability as a moderator of these associations. Methods Patients are being screened after index admission for acute coronary syndrome at a single, high volume centre, MonashHeart, Monash Health, Victoria, Australia. The inclusion criterion is all patients aged > 21 years old and fluent in English admitted to MonashHeart, Monash Health with a diagnosis of acute coronary syndrome. The primary outcome is mean health related quality of life (Short Form-36) Physical and Mental Health Summary scores at 12 and 24 months in subtypes with somatic symptoms of depression and anxiety. Depressive domains are assessed by the Beck Depression Inventory II and the Cardiac Depression Scale. Anxiety is measured using the Speilberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory and the Crown Crisp Phobic Anxiety questionnaire. Secondary outcomes include clinical variables, healthcare service utilisation and vocational functioning. Discussion This manuscript presents the protocol for a prospective cohort study which will investigate the role of somatic subtypes of depression and anxiety as predictors of health related quality of life, long-term vocational functioning and health service use, and the role of the autonomic nervous system in

  9. Impact of universal health coverage on urban–rural inequity in psychiatric service utilisation for patients with first admission for psychosis: a 10-year nationwide population-based study in Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Chiang, Chih-Lin; Chen, Pei-Chun; Huang, Ling-Ya; Kuo, Po-Hsiu; Tung, Yu-Chi; Liu, Chen-Chung; Chen, Wei J

    2016-01-01

    Objective To examine the disparities in psychiatric service utilisation over a 10-year period for patients with first admission for psychosis in relation to urban–rural residence following the implementation of universal health coverage in Taiwan. Design Population-based retrospective cohort study. Setting Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database, which has a population coverage rate of over 99% and contains all medical claim records of a nationwide cohort of patients with at least one psychiatric admission between 1996 and 2007. Participants 69 690 patients aged 15–59 years with first admission between 1998 and 2007 for any psychotic disorder. Main exposure measure Patients’ urban–rural residence at first admissions. Main outcome measures Absolute and relative inequality indexes of the following quality indicators after discharge from the first admission: all-cause psychiatric readmission at 2 and 4 years, dropout of psychiatric outpatient service at 30 days, and emergency department (ED) treat-and-release encounter at 30 days. Results Between 1998 and 2007, the 4-year readmission rate decreased from 65% to 58%, the 30-day dropout rate decreased from 18% to 15%, and the 30-day ED encounter rate increased from 8% to 10%. Risk of readmission has significantly decreased in rural and urban patients, but at a slower speed for the rural patients (p=0.026). The adjusted HR of readmission in rural versus urban patients has increased from 1.00 (95% CI 0.96 to 1.04) in 1998–2000 to 1.08 (95% CI 1.03 to 1.12) in 2005–2007, indicating a mild widening of the urban–rural gap. Urban–rural differences in 30-day dropout and ED encounter rates have been stationary over time. Conclusions The universal health coverage in Taiwan did not narrow urban–rural inequity of psychiatric service utilisation in patients with psychosis. Therefore, other policy interventions on resource allocation, service delivery and quality of care are needed to improve

  10. Time trends in statin utilisation and coronary mortality in Western European countries

    PubMed Central

    Vancheri, Federico; Backlund, Lars; Strender, Lars-Erik; Godman, Brian; Wettermark, Björn

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To determine whether there is a relation between statin utilisation and coronary heart disease (CHD) mortality in populations with different levels of coronary risk, and whether the relation changes over time. Design Ecological study using national databases of dispensed medicines and mortality rates. Setting Western European countries with similar public health systems. Main outcome measures Population CHD mortality rates (rate/100 000) as a proxy for population coronary risk level, and statin utilisation expressed as Defined Daily Dose per one Thousand Inhabitants per Day (DDD/TID), in each country, for each year between 2000 and 2012. Spearman's correlation coefficients between CHD mortality and statin utilisation were calculated. Linear regression analysis was used to assess the relation between changes in CHD mortality and statin utilisation over the years. Results 12 countries were included in the study. There was a wide range of CHD mortality reduction between the years 2000 and 2012 (from 25.9% in Italy to 57.9% in Denmark) and statin utilisation increase (from 121% in Belgium to 1263% in Denmark). No statistically significant relations were found between CHD mortality rates and statin utilisation, nor between changes in CHD and changes in statin utilisation in the countries over the years 2000 and 2012. Conclusions Among the Western European countries studied, the large increase in statin utilisation between 2000 and 2012 was not associated with CHD mortality, nor with its rate of change over the years. Factors different from the individual coronary risk, such as population ageing, health authority programmes, guidelines, media attention and pharmaceutical industry marketing, may have influenced the large increase in statin utilisation. These need to be re-examined with a greater emphasis on prevention strategies. PMID:27029774

  11. The response to the first dose of an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor in uncomplicated hypertension--a placebo controlled study utilising ambulatory blood pressure recording.

    PubMed Central

    MacFadyen, R J; Bainbridge, A D; Lees, K R; Reid, J L

    1991-01-01

    1. The importance of total dose to the initial hypotensive response with an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor (quinapril) was assessed using a suggested 'maintenance' dose (20 mg) or matched placebo in a randomised double-blind study in patients with uncomplicated hypertension. 2. Thirty-two patients were recruited who were not on therapy or had not received diuretic therapy in their existing drug treatment in the preceding 4 weeks. Secondary causes of hypertension had previously been excluded and sustained clinic blood pressures of SBP greater than 160 mmHg and/or DBP greater than 90 mmHg were taken as indications for a trial of adjuvant or monotherapy with an ACE inhibitor. 3. After uneventful supervised therapy with quinapril in an open pilot study (n = 5) 27 patients entered a double-blind, randomised, crossover study of quinapril or placebo using ambulatory monitoring to assess BP response. 4. All patients remained asymptomatic and both therapy and monitoring were well tolerated. A smooth onset of antihypertensive effect was noted with an overall 24 h placebo corrected fall in systolic BP of 9.9 mmHg (7.2-12.6 95% CI) and diastolic BP of 6.4 mmHg (4.2-8.8) with no significant effect on heart rate. Individual placebo corrected maximal responses during the first 8 h following quinapril showed a wide range for both systolic (+1.56 to 44.0 mmHg) and diastolic (+2.3 to -35.6 mmHg) pressure. Larger falls tended to be associated with higher baseline pretreatment pressures but in no case did absolute systolic pressure fall below 100 mmHg during the first 8 h following administration of placebo or quinapril.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:1777377

  12. Comparative assessment of compost and zeolite utilisation for the simultaneous removal of BTEX, Cd and Zn from the aqueous phase: Batch and continuous flow study.

    PubMed

    Simantiraki, Fotini; Gidarakos, Evangelos

    2015-08-15

    The present study focuses on the comparison of two materials, compost from municipal solid waste and natural zeolite for the simultaneous removal of petroleum hydrocarbons (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylenes - BTEX) and toxic metals from groundwater. First, batch experiments were conducted to identify the optimal removal conditions. All of the kinetic experiments were fitted to the pseudo-second-order kinetic model; equilibrium was reached within approximately 8 h for the zeolite and 12 h for the compost. An increase in the adsorbent dose and the pH value as well as a decrease in the initial concentration enhanced the pollutants' removal. The removal selectivity of both materials with slight differences follows the order Cd > Zn & toluene > ethylbenzene > m- & p-xylene > o-xylene > benzene. According, to the results derived from the continuous flow experiments the maximum adsorption capacity of the compost (90%) referred to Cd (0.88 mmol/g) whereas the minimum refers to benzene (65%) with a capacity up to 0.065 mmol/g. Zeolite had lower efficiencies for the studied pollutants with a higher performance corresponding to Cd (0.26 mmol/g), whereas the minimum zeolite capacity (63%) corresponds to toluene (0.045 mmol/g). Thus, this paper provides evidence that compost, a low cost material produced from waste, is capable for the simultaneous removal of both organic and inorganic pollutants from wastewater, and its performance is superior to zeolite.

  13. Utilising behavioural family therapy (BFT) to help support the system around a person with intellectual disability and complex mental health needs: a case study.

    PubMed

    Marshall, Keith; Ferris, Jan

    2012-06-01

    There is a higher incidence of mental health problems amongst people with intellectual disabilities. Family members and support staff who provide support to people with intellectual disabilities with mental health difficulties are more likely to experience increased stress. In the mainstream mental health literature it has been demonstrated that psycho-educational family interventions have a positive impact on the person with mental health difficulties and on the family members who support them. This article uses a case study to illustrate the implementation of a family intervention with the support system around someone with intellectual disabilities, autism and chronic mental health difficulties. Following intervention the family member reported a marked decrease in levels of strain. Both the family and team members reported improvement in functioning within the support system. PMID:22496309

  14. Recycling and utilisation of industrial solid waste: an explorative study on gold deposit tailings of ductile shear zone type in China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Rui; Huang, Fei; Du, Runxiang; Zhao, Chunming; Li, Yongli; Yu, Haoran

    2015-06-01

    Tailings are solid waste arising from mineral processing. This type of waste can cause severe damage to the environment during stockpiling as a result of the leaching of something harmful into the ecosystem. Gold deposit of ductile shear zone type is an important type of gold deposit, and the recycling of its tailings has been challenging researchers for a long time. In this article, the characteristics of this type of tailings were systematically studied by using modern technical means. Considering the characteristics of the tailings, clay was selected to make up for the shortcomings of the tailings and improve their performance. Water and raw materials were mixed to produce green bodies, which are subsequently sintered into ceramic bodies at 980 °C~1020 °C (sintering temperature). The results showed that some new kinds of mineral phases, such as mullite, anorthite and orthoclase, appear in ceramic bodies. Furthermore, the ceramic bodies have a surface hardness of 5 to 6 (Mohs scale), and their water absorption and modulus of rupture can meet some technical requirements of ceramic materials described in ISO 13006-2012 and GB 5001-1985. These gold mine tailings can be made into ceramic tiles, domestic ceramic bodies, and other kinds of ceramic bodies for commercial and industrial purposes after further improvements.

  15. Healthcare Utilisation and Empowerment Among Women in Liberia

    PubMed Central

    Sipsma, Heather; Callands, Tamora A; Bradley, Elizabeth; Harris, Benjamin; Johnson, Billy; Hansen, Nathan B

    2014-01-01

    Background Many efforts have been undertaken to improve access to healthcare services in low-income settings; nevertheless, underutilisation persists. Women’s lack of empowerment may be a central reason for underutilisation, but empirical literature establishing this relationship is sparse. Methods We conducted a cross-sectional study using data from the 2007 Liberia Demographic and Health Survey. Our sample included all non-pregnant women who were currently married or living with a partner (N=3925 unweighted). We used multivariate logistic regression to assess the associations between constructs derived from the Theory of Gender and Power (TGP) and healthcare utilisation. Results Two-thirds of women (65.6%) had been to a healthcare facility for herself or her children in the past 12 months. Constructs from the three major theoretical structures were associated with healthcare utilisation. Women with no education, compared with women with some education, were less likely to have been to a healthcare facility (OR=0.76; 95% CI 0.62 to 0.93) as were women who had experienced sexual abuse (OR=0.65; 95% CI 0.45 to 0.95) and women who were married (OR=0.69, 95% CI 0.54 to 0.88). Women in higher wealth quintiles, compared with women in the next lower wealth quintile, and women with more decision-making power had greater odds of having been to a healthcare facility (OR=1.22; 95% CI 1.10 to 1.36 and OR=1.10; 95% CI 1.01 to 1.20; respectively). Conclusions Strong associations exist between healthcare utilisation and empowerment among women in Liberia, and gender imbalances are prevalent. This fundamental issue likely needs to be addressed before large-scale improvement in health service utilisation can be expected. PMID:23929617

  16. Utilisation of aromatic organosulfur compounds as sulfur sources by Lipomyces starkeyi CBS 1807.

    PubMed

    Linder, Tomas

    2016-10-01

    Aromatic organosulfur compounds that contain aryl carbon-sulfur bonds are rare in nature but occur frequently in industrial processes and products. The utilisation of aryl sulfur compounds as a sulfur source has not been described previously among the budding yeasts (phylum Ascomycota, sub-phylum Saccharomycotina). A total of 31 strains representing 30 species and 28 genera of the budding yeasts were assayed for utilisation of benzene sulfonate as source of sulfur. Lipomyces starkeyi CBS 1807 was the only strain in this screen that was able to utilise benzene sulfonate as a sulfur source. Further study of L. starkeyi demonstrated that it could also utilise methyl phenyl sulfoxide, 1-naphthalene sulfonate, 2-naphthalene sulfonate, 1-anthraquinone sulfonate and 2-anthraquinone sulfonate as sulfur sources but not diphenylsulfone. This study represents the first reported case of the utilisation of sulfonated naphthalenes and anthraquinones as sulfur sources by a fungus. However, it should be stressed that the remaining 30 strains in this study were not assayed for the utilisation of these additional aryl sulfur compounds as sulfur sources. The present study highlights the potential of L. starkeyi and related species as a source of novel enzyme activities with possible applications in chemical manufacturing, disposal of xenobiotics and bioremediation.

  17. Detection of theophylline utilising portable electrochemical sensors.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tiancheng; Randviir, Edward P; Banks, Craig E

    2014-04-21

    The electrochemical oxidation of theophylline (TP) is investigated utilising screen-printed electrodes. Through thorough investigation of pH, we propose a reaction mechanism, finding that the oxidation of TP is stable over a wide pH range, in particular under acidic conditions. Conversely under alkaline conditions, theophylline fouls the electrode surface. The screen-printed carbon sensors are applied towards the electroanalytical sensing of TP with a remarkable amount of success in aqueous solution at physiological pH. The screen-printed sensors have been shown to be applicable to the detection of TP at unharmful, medicinally relevant (55-110 μM), and toxic concentrations in aqueous media at physiological pH. Thus this work presents a proof-of-concept approach towards TP detection utilising sensors commonly implemented in point-of-care applications.

  18. Utilisation of magnets to enhance gastrointestinal endoscopy.

    PubMed

    Rahman, Imdadur; Patel, Praful; Boger, Philip; Thomson, Mike; Afzal, Nadeem Ahmad

    2015-12-25

    Methods to assess, access and treat pathology within the gastrointestinal tract continue to evolve with video endoscopy replacing radiology as the gold standard. Whilst endoscope technology develops further with the advent of newer higher resolution chips, an array of adjuncts has been developed to enhance endoscopy in other ways; most notable is the use of magnets. Magnets are utilised in many areas, ranging from endoscopic training, lesion resection, aiding manoeuvrability of capsule endoscopes, to assisting in easy placement of tubes for nutritional feeding. Some of these are still at an experimental stage, whilst others are being increasingly incorporated in our everyday practice.

  19. The experiences of culturally and linguistically diverse family caregivers in utilising dementia services in Australia

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Older people from culturally and linguistically diverse groups are underrepresented in residential aged care but overrepresented in community aged care in Australia. However, little is known about culturally and linguistically diverse family caregivers in utilising dementia services in Australia because previous studies mainly focused on the majority cultural group. Experiences of caregivers from culturally and linguistically diverse groups who are eligible to utilise dementia services in Australia are needed in order to optimize the utilisation of dementia services for these caregivers. Methods The aim of the study was to explore the experiences of family caregivers from Chinese, Greek, Italian and Vietnamese groups in utilising dementia services. Gadamer's philosophical hermeneutics was used to interpret the experiences of the participants. Focus group discussions and in-depth individual interviews were used to collect data. Data collection was conducted over a six month period in 2011. In total, 46 family caregivers who were caring for 39 persons with dementia participated. Results Four themes were revealed: (1) negotiating services for the person with dementia; (2) the impact of acculturation on service utilisation; (3) the characteristics of satisfactory services; and (4) negative experiences in utilising services. The present study revealed that the participation of caregivers from culturally and linguistically diverse groups in planning and managing dementia services ranged markedly from limited participation to full participation. Conclusions The findings of this study suggest that caregivers from culturally and linguistically diverse groups need to be fully prepared so they can participate in the utilisation of dementia services available to them in Australia. PMID:24148155

  20. Men, masculine identities, and health care utilisation.

    PubMed

    Noone, Jack H; Stephens, Christine

    2008-07-01

    Seeking medical help early is critical for recovery, yet evidence indicates that men do not utilise general practitioner services as often as women. This paper draws on Connell's (1995) theory of hegemonic masculinity to critically examine how men's under-utilisation of medical services may be influenced by the social construction of masculine identities. Interviews with seven older rural men about their help-seeking behaviour, used a movie extract and hypothetical scenarios to stimulate discussion. Transcribed data were analysed using discourse analysis, which showed that in this particular social context, the men faced a dilemma when identifying with two conflicting subject positions: the virtuous regular health care user, and the masculine infrequent user of health care services. They solved this dilemma by positioning women as frequent and trivial users of health care and themselves as legitimate users of health care. By using biomedical and morality discourses in this way the men could maintain a masculine identity whilst also identifying as virtuous users of health care services. These results support the utility of hegemonic masculinity as a theoretical basis for examining the construction and maintenance of gendered identities by highlighting the complexity of multiple masculine identities.

  1. Determinants of postnatal service utilisation among mothers in rural settings of Malawi.

    PubMed

    Phiri, Precious William C; Rattanapan, Cheerawit; Mongkolchati, Aroonsri

    2015-09-01

    The aim of this study was to determine significant predictors for the utilisation of postnatal service among mothers. A total of 295 postnatal mothers were enrolled in a cross-sectional study design undertaken in six health facilities of Lilongwe District using two-stage cluster sampling with a response rate of 100%. The data were collected by interview from December 2012 to January 2013 using a structured questionnaire. The result showed that over half of the mothers (56.6%) utilised postnatal service within 6 weeks after delivery. A stepwise multiple logistic regression was used to determine significant determinants of utilisation of postnatal service among mothers. After adjusting for confounding factors, utilisation of an alternative local source of care in home after delivery [adjusted odds ratio (aOR): 7.77, 95% CI: 4.14-14.58], women's perception on performance of health workforce during delivery and postnatal service (aOR: 6.56, 95% CI: 3.09-13.94), health education before hospital discharge of postnatal mothers (aOR: 4.08, 95% CI: 2.11-7.92), place of delivery (aOR: 4.32, 95% CI: 1.32-14.12), family income (aOR: 1.89, 95% CI: 1.03-3.46) and the occurrence of no complications during delivery (aOR: 1.90, 95% CI: 1.03-3.50) were significantly associated with the utilisation of postnatal service. Hence, this study suggests that improved health workforce performance coupled with effective health education may increase the utilisation of postnatal service. Furthermore, the utilisation of postnatal service may also be increased through reducing home deliveries, delivery complications and the use of alternative local care at home after delivery. Integration of postnatal service in outreach clinics might also assist through reducing the cost of accessing postnatal service among mothers.

  2. Landscape Utilisation, Animal Behaviour and Hendra Virus Risk.

    PubMed

    Field, H E; Smith, C S; de Jong, C E; Melville, D; Broos, A; Kung, N; Thompson, J; Dechmann, D K N

    2016-03-01

    Hendra virus causes sporadic fatal disease in horses and humans in eastern Australia. Pteropid bats (flying-foxes) are the natural host of the virus. The mode of flying-fox to horse transmission remains unclear, but oro-nasal contact with flying-fox urine, faeces or saliva is the most plausible. We used GPS data logger technology to explore the landscape utilisation of black flying-foxes and horses to gain new insight into equine exposure risk. Flying-fox foraging was repetitious, with individuals returning night after night to the same location. There was a preference for fragmented arboreal landscape and non-native plant species, resulting in increased flying-fox activity around rural infrastructure. Our preliminary equine data logger study identified significant variation between diurnal and nocturnal grazing behaviour that, combined with the observed flying-fox foraging behaviour, could contribute to Hendra virus exposure risk. While we found no significant risk-exposing difference in individual horse movement behaviour in this study, the prospect warrants further investigation, as does the broader role of animal behaviour and landscape utilisation on the transmission dynamics of Hendra virus.

  3. Landscape Utilisation, Animal Behaviour and Hendra Virus Risk.

    PubMed

    Field, H E; Smith, C S; de Jong, C E; Melville, D; Broos, A; Kung, N; Thompson, J; Dechmann, D K N

    2016-03-01

    Hendra virus causes sporadic fatal disease in horses and humans in eastern Australia. Pteropid bats (flying-foxes) are the natural host of the virus. The mode of flying-fox to horse transmission remains unclear, but oro-nasal contact with flying-fox urine, faeces or saliva is the most plausible. We used GPS data logger technology to explore the landscape utilisation of black flying-foxes and horses to gain new insight into equine exposure risk. Flying-fox foraging was repetitious, with individuals returning night after night to the same location. There was a preference for fragmented arboreal landscape and non-native plant species, resulting in increased flying-fox activity around rural infrastructure. Our preliminary equine data logger study identified significant variation between diurnal and nocturnal grazing behaviour that, combined with the observed flying-fox foraging behaviour, could contribute to Hendra virus exposure risk. While we found no significant risk-exposing difference in individual horse movement behaviour in this study, the prospect warrants further investigation, as does the broader role of animal behaviour and landscape utilisation on the transmission dynamics of Hendra virus. PMID:26403793

  4. An Integrated Marine Propulsion System Utilising TRIGA{sup TM} Fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Manach, G.; Monnez, J-P.; Freeman, M.J.; Newell, A.; Brushwood, J.M.; Thompson, A.; Collins, C.; Scholes, N.; Hamilton, P.J.; Beeley, P.A.

    2004-07-01

    This paper describes the reactor physics, shielding, thermal hydraulics, reactor dynamics and safety studies conducted to develop a proposed Integrated Marine Propulsion System (IMPS) utilising TRIGA{sup TM} type uranium zirconium hydride fuel. The study has demonstrated that the IMPS plant is feasible and meets the design safety principles and safety criteria imposed on the study. (authors)

  5. Perspectives and visions on CO2 capture and utilisation.

    PubMed

    North, M; Styring, P

    2015-01-01

    This article summarises and contextualises the debates which occurred during the Carbon Dioxide Utilisation Faraday Discussion meeting. The utilisation of carbon dioxide is discussed in terms of both conversion to fuel, with a potential impact on atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, and conversion to chemicals with a potential impact on sustainability. PMID:26527125

  6. Perspectives and visions on CO2 capture and utilisation.

    PubMed

    North, M; Styring, P

    2015-01-01

    This article summarises and contextualises the debates which occurred during the Carbon Dioxide Utilisation Faraday Discussion meeting. The utilisation of carbon dioxide is discussed in terms of both conversion to fuel, with a potential impact on atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, and conversion to chemicals with a potential impact on sustainability.

  7. Adolescents' utilisation of psychiatric care, neighbourhoods and neighbourhood socioeconomic deprivation: a multilevel analysis.

    PubMed

    Ivert, Anna-Karin; Torstensson Levander, Marie; Merlo, Juan

    2013-01-01

    Mental health problems among adolescents have become a major public health issue, and it is therefore important to increase knowledge on the contextual determinants of adolescent mental health. One such determinant is the socioeconomic structure of the neighbourhood. The present study has two central objectives, (i) to examine if neighbourhood socioeconomic deprivation is associated to individual variations in utilisation of psychiatric care in a Swedish context, and (ii) to investigate if neighbourhood boundaries are a valid construct for identifying contexts that influence individual variations in psychiatric care utilization. Data were obtained from the Longitudinal Multilevel Analysis in Scania (LOMAS) database. The study population consists of all boys and girls aged 13-18 years (N=18,417), who were living in the city of Malmö, Sweden, in 2005. Multilevel logistic regression analysis was applied to estimate the probability of psychiatric care utilisation. The results from the study indicate that the neighbourhood of residence had little influence on psychiatric care utilisation. Although we initially found a variation between neighbourhoods, this general contextual effect was very small (i.e. 1.6%). The initial conclusive association between the neighbourhood level of disadvantage and psychiatric care utilisation (specific contextual effect) disappeared following adjustment for individual and family level variables. Our results suggest the neighbourhoods in Malmö (at least measured in terms of SAMS-areas), do not provide accurate information for discriminating adolescents utilisation of psychiatric care. The SAMS-areas appears to be an inappropriate construct of the social environment that influences adolescent utilisation of psychiatric care. Therefore, public health interventions should be directed to the whole city rather than to specific neighbourhoods. However, since geographical, social or cultural contexts may be important for our understanding of

  8. Utilisation of chip thickness models in grinding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singleton, Roger

    Grinding is now a well established process utilised for both stock removal and finish applications. Although significant research is performed in this field, grinding still experiences problems with burn and high forces which can lead to poor quality components and damage to equipment. This generally occurs in grinding when the process deviates from its safe working conditions. In milling, chip thickness parameters are utilised to predict and maintain process outputs leading to improved control of the process. This thesis looks to further the knowledge of the relationship between chip thickness and the grinding process outputs to provide an increased predictive and maintenance modelling capability. Machining trials were undertaken using different chip thickness parameters to understand how these affect the process outputs. The chip thickness parameters were maintained at different grinding wheel diameters for a constant productivity process to determine the impact of chip thickness at a constant material removal rate.. Additional testing using a modified pin on disc test rig was performed to provide further information on process variables. The different chip thickness parameters provide control of different process outputs in the grinding process. These relationships can be described using contact layer theory and heat flux partitioning. The contact layer is defined as the immediate layer beneath the contact arc at the wheel workpiece interface. The size of the layer governs the force experienced during the process. The rate of contact layer removal directly impacts the net power required from the system. It was also found that the specific grinding energy of a process is more dependent on the productivity of a grinding process

  9. Integrated nuclear data utilisation system for innovative reactors.

    PubMed

    Yamano, N; Hasegawa, A; Kato, K; Igashira, M

    2005-01-01

    A five-year research and development project on an integrated nuclear data utilisation system was initiated in 2002, for developing innovative nuclear energy systems such as accelerator-driven systems. The integrated nuclear data utilisation system will be constructed as a modular code system, which consists of two sub-systems: the nuclear data search and plotting sub-system, and the nuclear data processing and utilisation sub-system. The system will be operated with a graphical user interface in order to enable easy utilisation through the Internet by both nuclear design engineers and nuclear data evaluators. This paper presents an overview of the integrated nuclear data utilisation system, describes the development of a prototype system to examine the operability of the user interface and discusses specifications of the two sub-systems. PMID:16381697

  10. Integrated nuclear data utilisation system for innovative reactors.

    PubMed

    Yamano, N; Hasegawa, A; Kato, K; Igashira, M

    2005-01-01

    A five-year research and development project on an integrated nuclear data utilisation system was initiated in 2002, for developing innovative nuclear energy systems such as accelerator-driven systems. The integrated nuclear data utilisation system will be constructed as a modular code system, which consists of two sub-systems: the nuclear data search and plotting sub-system, and the nuclear data processing and utilisation sub-system. The system will be operated with a graphical user interface in order to enable easy utilisation through the Internet by both nuclear design engineers and nuclear data evaluators. This paper presents an overview of the integrated nuclear data utilisation system, describes the development of a prototype system to examine the operability of the user interface and discusses specifications of the two sub-systems.

  11. Utilising shade to optimize UV exposure for vitamin D

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turnbull, D. J.; Parisi, A. V.

    2008-01-01

    Numerous studies have stated that humans need to utilise full sun radiation, at certain times of the day, to assist the body in synthesising the required levels of vitamin D3. The time needed to be spent in the full sun depends on a number of factors, for example, age, skin type, latitude, solar zenith angle. Current Australian guidelines suggest exposure to approximately 1/6 to 1/3 of a minimum erythemal dose (MED), depending on age, would be appropriate to provide adequate vitamin D3 levels. The aim of the study was to determine the exposure times to diffuse solar UV to receive exposures of 1/6 and 1/3 MED for a changing solar zenith angle in order to assess the possible role that diffuse UV (scattered radiation) may play in vitamin D3 effective UV exposures (UVD3). Diffuse and global erythemal UV measurements were conducted at five minute intervals over a twelve month period for a solar zenith angle range of 4° to 80° at a latitude of 27.6° S. For diffuse UV exposures of 1/6 and 1/3 MED, solar zenith angles smaller than 60° and 50° respectively can be utilised for exposure times of less than 10 min. Spectral measurements showed that, for a solar zenith angle of 40°, the UVA (315-400 nm) in the diffuse component of the solar UV is reduced by approximately 62% compared to the UVA in the global UV, whereas UVD3 wavelengths are only reduced by approximately 43%. At certain latitudes, diffuse UV under shade may play an important role in providing the human body with adequate levels of UVD3 (290-330 nm) radiation without experiencing the high levels of damaging UVA observed in full sun.

  12. Utilising shade to optimize UV exposure for vitamin D

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turnbull, D. J.; Parisi, A. V.

    2008-06-01

    Numerous studies have stated that humans need to utilise full sun radiation, at certain times of the day, to assist the body in synthesising the required levels of vitamin D3. The time needed to be spent in the full sun depends on a number of factors, for example, age, skin type, latitude, solar zenith angle. Current Australian guidelines suggest exposure to approximately 1/6 to 1/3 of a minimum erythemal dose (MED), depending on age, would be appropriate to provide adequate vitamin D3 levels. The aim of the study was to determine the exposure times to diffuse solar UV to receive exposures of 1/6 and 1/3 MED for a changing solar zenith angle in order to assess the possible role that diffuse UV (scattered radiation) may play in vitamin D3 effective UV exposures (UVD3). Diffuse and global erythemal UV measurements were conducted at five minute intervals over a twelve month period for a solar zenith angle range of 4° to 80° at a latitude of 27.6° S. For a diffuse UV exposure of 1/3 MED, solar zenith angles smaller than approximately 50° can be utilised for exposure times of less than 10 min. Spectral measurements showed that, for a solar zenith angle of 40°, the UVA (315-400 nm) in the diffuse component of the solar UV is reduced by approximately 62% compared to the UVA in the global UV, whereas UVD3 wavelengths are only reduced by approximately 43%. At certain latitudes, diffuse UV under shade may play an important role in providing the human body with adequate levels of UVD3 (290-315 nm) radiation without experiencing the high levels of UVA observed in full sun.

  13. Rural/urban differences in the association between deprivation and healthcare utilisation.

    PubMed

    Gilthorpe, Mark S; Wilson, Richard C

    2003-12-01

    Whilst associations between inequalities in healthcare utilisation and socio-economic deprivation are well established in the UK it is argued that deprivation indices, such as the Townsend index, remain insensitive to rural/urban differences. This study examines how Townsend and its components differ in their association with healthcare utilisation across the rural/urban spectrum of a large health region. Our research was carried out in the West Midlands National Health Service region (population 5.3 million), comprising of a similar geographical population diversity to that of the United Kingdom (UK) using Hospital Episode Statistics (1994/5-1998/9) and 1991 census socio-demographic data. Retrospective multilevel multivariate models compare three ward-level healthcare utilisation measures (standardised episode-, admission-, and bed-rates) in relation to the Townsend index of material deprivation, its components, and four rural/urban characteristics (population density, population potential, electoral ward area and perimeter size). The associations between outcomes and Townsend were generally not attenuated by the rural/urban characteristics. The constituent component of car-ownership was similarly unperturbed, whereas population potential significantly perturbed the home-ownership model and overcrowding was significantly perturbed by all four rural/urban characteristics considered. A deprivation index may encapsulate different meanings to that of its components when used to assess variations in healthcare utilisation. Constituent components may yield considerable perturbation in relation to healthcare utilisation across the rural/urban spectrum, whilst the composite measure does not. In particular, and contrary to anecdotal opinion, car-ownership and unemployment (as recorded in the 1991 UK census) exhibited a stable relationship across different rural/urban areas with respect to healthcare utilisation. PMID:14512237

  14. Factors that influence utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods among university students residing at a selected university campus.

    PubMed

    Ndabarora, Eléazar; Mchunu, Gugu

    2014-01-01

    Various studies have reported that university students, who are mostly young people, rarely use existing HIV/AIDS preventive methods. Although studies have shown that young university students have a high degree of knowledge about HIV/AIDS and HIV modes of transmission, they are still not utilising the existing HIV prevention methods and still engage in risky sexual practices favourable to HIV. Some variables, such as awareness of existing HIV/AIDS prevention methods, have been associated with utilisation of such methods. The study aimed to explore factors that influence use of existing HIV/AIDS prevention methods among university students residing in a selected campus, using the Health Belief Model (HBM) as a theoretical framework. A quantitative research approach and an exploratory-descriptive design were used to describe perceived factors that influence utilisation by university students of HIV/AIDS prevention methods. A total of 335 students completed online and manual questionnaires. Study findings showed that the factors which influenced utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods were mainly determined by awareness of the existing university-based HIV/AIDS prevention strategies. Most utilised prevention methods were voluntary counselling and testing services and free condoms. Perceived susceptibility and perceived threat of HIV/AIDS score was also found to correlate with HIV risk index score. Perceived susceptibility and perceived threat of HIV/AIDS showed correlation with self-efficacy on condoms and their utilisation. Most HBM variables were not predictors of utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods among students. Intervention aiming to improve the utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods among students at the selected university should focus on removing identified barriers, promoting HIV/AIDS prevention services and providing appropriate resources to implement such programmes. PMID:25444096

  15. Factors that influence utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods among university students residing at a selected university campus.

    PubMed

    Ndabarora, Eléazar; Mchunu, Gugu

    2014-01-01

    Various studies have reported that university students, who are mostly young people, rarely use existing HIV/AIDS preventive methods. Although studies have shown that young university students have a high degree of knowledge about HIV/AIDS and HIV modes of transmission, they are still not utilising the existing HIV prevention methods and still engage in risky sexual practices favourable to HIV. Some variables, such as awareness of existing HIV/AIDS prevention methods, have been associated with utilisation of such methods. The study aimed to explore factors that influence use of existing HIV/AIDS prevention methods among university students residing in a selected campus, using the Health Belief Model (HBM) as a theoretical framework. A quantitative research approach and an exploratory-descriptive design were used to describe perceived factors that influence utilisation by university students of HIV/AIDS prevention methods. A total of 335 students completed online and manual questionnaires. Study findings showed that the factors which influenced utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods were mainly determined by awareness of the existing university-based HIV/AIDS prevention strategies. Most utilised prevention methods were voluntary counselling and testing services and free condoms. Perceived susceptibility and perceived threat of HIV/AIDS score was also found to correlate with HIV risk index score. Perceived susceptibility and perceived threat of HIV/AIDS showed correlation with self-efficacy on condoms and their utilisation. Most HBM variables were not predictors of utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods among students. Intervention aiming to improve the utilisation of HIV/AIDS prevention methods among students at the selected university should focus on removing identified barriers, promoting HIV/AIDS prevention services and providing appropriate resources to implement such programmes.

  16. Appropriateness versus efficiency: the economics of utilisation review.

    PubMed

    Coast, J

    1996-04-01

    The aim of routine utilisation review is to identify patients who are inappropriately placed in an acute unit and who could be alternatively treated in a lower technology facility. Utilisation review was designed as a means of cost control in the USA. but problems with rising emergency admissions and consequent acute bed shortages in the UK have led to a substantial and growing interest in the concept of appropriateness and in the development of utilisation review instruments. Appropriate care is not necessarily the same as efficient care, however, and inappropriate care could potentially be more cost-effective than the alternative. This will depend on, first, whether the design of utilisation review instruments is such that they will encourage efficiency, and second. whether efficiency objectives would be met by the application of utilisation review in the context of the UK health care system. The first issue is discussed in relation to the effectiveness of alternative forms of care. The second is discussed in relation to the potential for reductions in cost, the issue of institutional resistance in the UK, and the validity of utilisation review instruments. The paper concludes that the potential impact of utilisation review on technical efficiency in the UK is ambiguous and questions its purpose in the National Health Service.

  17. Utilisation trends of rosiglitazone and pioglitazone in Australia before and after safety warnings

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background A see on cardiovascular diseases and bladder cancer. The changes to the patterns of rosiglitazone and pioglitazone utilisation in Australia following the timing of these various health authority warnings such as the Australian Therapeutic Good Administration (TGA), European Medicines Agency (EMA) press releases or U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is unknown. This study investigated the utilisation patterns of rosiglitazone and pioglitazone in Australia before and after warnings of major drug authorities. Methods We evaluated rosiglitazone and pioglitazone dispensing using the Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme (PBS) subsidised drug dispensing data for the Australian population from February 2004 to July 2012. The World Health Organisation Anatomic Therapeutic Chemical (ATC)/Defined Daily Dose (DDD) system was used to compare the drug utilisation patterns following the announcements of EMA, FDA, and TGA safety warnings, which first occurred in May 2007. The DDD/1000population/day were examined in a series of time-series regression analysis with the drug safety warnings specified as interventions. Results Rosiglitazone utilisation increased steadily from 2004 until reaching a peak at 1.96/1000population/day in January 2007. Then rosiglitazone use decreased significantly after the initial EMA press release and FDA warning on cardiovascular risk in May 2007 (with a 15.04% average monthly decline, p-value <0.001), however use did not significantly decrease after the TGA warning or subsequent EMA and FDA warnings. Pioglitazone utilisation proceeded rosiglitazone in September 2008 and remained above 1.5/1000/day during 2009–2010. However, pioglitazone utilisation has slightly declined after the FDA, EMA, and TGA warnings related to bladder cancer. Conclusions Drug safety warnings were associated with a decrease in rosiglitazone and pioglitazone utilisation in Australia. Rosiglitazone began to decline prior to TGA warnings in December 2007, which suggests

  18. Natural gas development and utilisation pattern in India

    SciTech Connect

    Mulchandani, H.K.; Balakrishnan, M.

    1984-02-01

    In this era of energy consciousness, Natural Gas is destined to play an important role in the economic life of India. The luxury of flaring into atmosphere is over. Rather stocks are being assessed and capital investments are planned for the optimum development and utilisation of gas. In this paper, authors have attempted to tie up various data on different aspects of gas business such as supply, source, production, utilisation pattern and its share in energy and economy. The optimal utilisation plan as discussed here could be of some value to the planners.

  19. To fractionate municipal solid waste incineration bottom ash: Key for utilisation?

    PubMed

    Sormunen, Laura Annika; Rantsi, Riina

    2015-11-01

    For the past decade, the Finnish waste sector has increasingly moved from the landfilling of municipal solid waste towards waste incineration. New challenges are faced with the growing amounts of municipal solid waste incineration bottom ash, which are mainly landfilled at the moment. Since this is not a sustainable or a profitable solution, finding different utilisation applications for the municipal solid waste incineration bottom ash is crucial. This study reports a comprehensive analysis of bottom ash properties from one waste incineration plant in Finland, which was first treated with a Dutch bottom ash recovery technique called advanced dry recovery. This novel process separates non-ferrous and ferrous metals from bottom ash, generating mineral fractions of different grain sizes (0-2 mm, 2-5 mm, 5-12 mm and 12-50 mm). The main aim of the study was to assess, whether the advanced bottom ash treatment technique, producing mineral fractions of different grain sizes and therefore properties, facilitates the utilisation of municipal solid waste incineration bottom ash in Finland. The results were encouraging; the bottom ash mineral fractions have favourable behaviour against the frost action, which is especially useful in the Finnish conditions. In addition, the leaching of most hazardous substances did not restrict the utilisation of bottom ash, especially for the larger fractions (>5 mm). Overall, this study has shown that the advanced bottom ash recovering technique can be one solution to increase the utilisation of bottom ash and furthermore decrease its landfilling in Finland.

  20. Infant care practices in rural China and their relation to prenatal care utilisation.

    PubMed

    Nwaru, B I; Wu, Z; Hemminki, E

    2011-01-01

    Studies describing postpartum childcare practices and the influence of prenatal care on infant care outcomes in rural China are scarce. This study looked at data for 1479 women who had given birth during the preceding 2 years (median age of the child was 8 months). Data were available from a Knowledge, Attitude and Perception cross-sectional survey collected from 2001 to 2003, after a prenatal care intervention in Anhui County, China, with a response rate of 97%. Prenatal care utilisation was categorised using the Adequacy of Prenatal Care Utilisation index. Logistic regression was used to study the association between prenatal care utilisation and infant care practices. Mothers' uptake of breastfeeding, introduction of milk formula, cereal/porridge, meat and uptake of any immunisation were found to be in accordance with national recommendations. Intermediate prenatal care uptake was positively associated with never breastfeeding and early introduction of cereal/porridge. Inadequate care was positively associated with never breastfeeding, early introduction of milk formula and cereal/porridge, and early start of work after delivery. Initiation to prenatal care after the third month was positively associated with early introduction of milk formula and cereal/porridge. Having no prenatal care was positively associated with never breastfeeding and early introduction of milk formula. Mothers' uptake of infant care practices in this population was largely in accordance with national recommendations. Women with less than adequate utilisation of prenatal care and those who had initiated prenatal care late were less likely to follow recommendations on infant care.

  1. Utilisation of a community-based health facility in a low-income urban community in Ibadan, Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    Asuzu, Michael C.

    2015-01-01

    Background Primary healthcare is established to ensure that people have access to health services through facilities located in their community. However, utilisation of health facilities in Nigeria remains low in many communities. Aim To assess the utilisation of community-based health facility (CBHF) amongst adults in Ibadan, Nigeria Settings A low-income community in Ibadan North West Local Government Area of Oyo State. Methods A cross-sectional survey was conducted using a simple random sampling technique to select one adult per household in all 586 houses in the community. A semi-structured interviewer-administered questionnaire was used to collect information on respondents' sociodemographic characteristics, knowledge and utilisation of the CBHF. Data analysis included descriptive statistics and association testing using the Chi-square test at p = 0.05. Results The mean age of the respondents was 46.5 ± 16.0 years; 46.0% were men and 81.0% married; 26% had no formal education and 38.0% had secondary-level education and above; traders constituted 52.0% of the sample; and 85.2% were of low socioeconomic standing; 90% had patronised the CBHF. The main reasons for non-utilisation were preference for general hospitals (13.8%) and self-medication (12.1%). Respondents who had secondary education and above, were in a higher socioeconomic class, who had good knowledge of the facility and were satisfied with care, utilised the CBHF three months significantly more than their counterparts prior to the study (p < 0.05). However, only satisfaction with care was found to be a significant predictor of utilisation of the CBHF. Conclusion The utilisation of the CBHF amongst adults in the study setting is high, driven mostly by satisfaction with the care received previously. Self-medication, promoted by uncontrolled access to drugs through pharmacies and patent medicine stores, threatens this high utilisation. PMID:26245600

  2. ICT and OTs: a model of information and communication technology acceptance and utilisation by occupational therapists.

    PubMed

    Schaper, Louise K; Pervan, Graham P

    2007-06-01

    There is evidence to suggest that health professionals are reluctant to accept and utilise information and communication technologies (ICT) and concern is growing within health informatics research that this is contributing to the lag in adoption and utilisation of ICT across the health sector. Technology acceptance research within the field of information systems has been limited in its application to health and there is a concurrent need to develop and gain empirical support for models of technology acceptance within health and to examine acceptance and utilisation issues amongst health professionals to improve the success of information system implementation in this arena. This paper outlines a project that examines ICT acceptance and utilisation by Australian occupational therapists. It describes the theoretical basis behind the development of a research model and the methodology being employed to empirically validate the model using substantial quantitative, qualitative and longitudinal data. Preliminary results from Phase II of the study are presented. The theoretical significance of this work is that it uses a thoroughly constructed research model, with potentially the largest sample size ever tested, to extend technology acceptance research into the health sector.

  3. Jarosite characteristics and its utilisation potentials.

    PubMed

    Pappu, Asokan; Saxena, Mohini; Asolekar, Shyam R

    2006-04-15

    During metallic zinc extraction from zinc sulphide or sulphide ore, huge quantity of jarosite is being released universally as solid residues. The jarosite mainly contains iron, sulphur, zinc, calcium, lead, cadmium and aluminium. Jarosite released from such industrial process is complex and its quality and quantity make the task more complex for safe disposal. Apart from water contamination, jarosite already accumulated and its increasing annual production is a major source of pollution for surrounding environment including soil, vegetation and aquatic life and hence its disposal leads to major concern because of the stringent environmental protection regulations. An attempt was made to evaluate the characteristics of Indian jarosite with an objectives to understand its potentials for recycling and utilising as raw materials for developing value added products. Sand and Coal Combustion Residues (CCRs) was used as an admixture to attain good workability and detoxify the toxic substance in the jarosite. Result revealed that jarosite is silty clay loam in texture having 63.48% silt sized and 32.35% clay sized particles. The particle size of jarosite (D90=16.21+/-0.20 microm) is finer than the CCRs (D90=19.72+/-0.18 microm). The jarosite is nonuniform in structure and shape as compared to the CCRs having spherical, hollow shaped and some of them are cenosphere in nature. The major mineral phase of jarosite is Potassium Iron Sulphate Hydroxide {KFe3(SO4)2(OH)6}and Iron Sulphate Hydrate {2 Fe2O3SO3 x 5 H2O}. In CCRs the dominant phases are quartz {SiO2}, mullite {3 Al2O3 x 2 SiO2} and hematite {Fe2O3}. The high electrical conductivity of jarosite (13.26+/-0.437 dS/m) indicates that the presence of cations and anions are predominant over CCRs (0.498+/-0.007 dS/m). The major portion of jarosite consists of iron (23.66+/-0.18%), sulphur (12.23+/-0.2%) and zinc (8.243+/-0.075%). But CCRs main constituents are silicon (27.41+/-0.74%), aluminium (15.167+/-0.376%) and iron (4

  4. Jarosite characteristics and its utilisation potentials.

    PubMed

    Pappu, Asokan; Saxena, Mohini; Asolekar, Shyam R

    2006-04-15

    During metallic zinc extraction from zinc sulphide or sulphide ore, huge quantity of jarosite is being released universally as solid residues. The jarosite mainly contains iron, sulphur, zinc, calcium, lead, cadmium and aluminium. Jarosite released from such industrial process is complex and its quality and quantity make the task more complex for safe disposal. Apart from water contamination, jarosite already accumulated and its increasing annual production is a major source of pollution for surrounding environment including soil, vegetation and aquatic life and hence its disposal leads to major concern because of the stringent environmental protection regulations. An attempt was made to evaluate the characteristics of Indian jarosite with an objectives to understand its potentials for recycling and utilising as raw materials for developing value added products. Sand and Coal Combustion Residues (CCRs) was used as an admixture to attain good workability and detoxify the toxic substance in the jarosite. Result revealed that jarosite is silty clay loam in texture having 63.48% silt sized and 32.35% clay sized particles. The particle size of jarosite (D90=16.21+/-0.20 microm) is finer than the CCRs (D90=19.72+/-0.18 microm). The jarosite is nonuniform in structure and shape as compared to the CCRs having spherical, hollow shaped and some of them are cenosphere in nature. The major mineral phase of jarosite is Potassium Iron Sulphate Hydroxide {KFe3(SO4)2(OH)6}and Iron Sulphate Hydrate {2 Fe2O3SO3 x 5 H2O}. In CCRs the dominant phases are quartz {SiO2}, mullite {3 Al2O3 x 2 SiO2} and hematite {Fe2O3}. The high electrical conductivity of jarosite (13.26+/-0.437 dS/m) indicates that the presence of cations and anions are predominant over CCRs (0.498+/-0.007 dS/m). The major portion of jarosite consists of iron (23.66+/-0.18%), sulphur (12.23+/-0.2%) and zinc (8.243+/-0.075%). But CCRs main constituents are silicon (27.41+/-0.74%), aluminium (15.167+/-0.376%) and iron (4

  5. Antenatal Care Utilisation and Content between Low-Risk and High-Risk Pregnant Women

    PubMed Central

    Yeoh, Ping Ling; Hornetz, Klaus; Dahlui, Maznah

    2016-01-01

    Background The purpose of antenatal care is to monitor and improve the wellbeing of the mother and foetus. The World Health Organization recommends risk-oriented strategy that includes: (i) routine care to all women, (ii) additional care for women with moderately severe diseases and complications, (iii) specialised obstetrical and neonatal care for women with severe diseases and complications. Antenatal care is concerned with adequate care in order to be effective. Measurement for adequacy of antenatal care often applies indexes that assess initiation of care and number of visits. In addition, adequacy of care content should also be assessed. Results of studies in developed settings demonstrate that women without risk factors use antenatal services more frequently than recommended. Such over-utilisation is problematic for low-resourced settings. Moreover, studies show that a substantial proportion of high-risk women had utilisation or content of care below the recommended standard. Yet studies in developing countries have seldom included a comparison between low-risk and high-risk women. The purpose of the study was therefore to assess adequacy of care and pregnancy outcomes for the different risk groups. Methods A retrospective study using a multistage sampling technique, at public-funded primary health care clinics was conducted. Antenatal utilisation level was assessed using a modified Adequacy of Prenatal Care Utilisation index that measures the timing for initiation of care and observed-to-expected visits ratio. Adequacy of antenatal care content assessed compliance to routine care based on the local guidelines. Results Intensive or “adequate-plus” antenatal care utilisation as defined by the modified index was noted in over half of the low-risk women. On the other hand, there were 26% of the high-risk women without the expected intensive utilisation. Primary- or non-educated high-risk women were less likely to have a higher antenatal care utilisation

  6. Biological carbon dioxide utilisation in food waste anaerobic digesters.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Y Bajón; Green, K; Schuler, K; Soares, A; Vale, P; Alibardi, L; Cartmell, E

    2015-12-15

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) enrichment of anaerobic digesters (AD) was previously identified as a potential on-site carbon revalorisation strategy. This study addresses the lack of studies investigating this concept in up-scaled units and the need to understand the mechanisms of exogenous CO2 utilisation. Two pilot-scale ADs treating food waste were monitored for 225 days, with the test unit being periodically injected with CO2 using a bubble column. The test AD maintained a CH4 production rate of 0.56 ± 0.13 m(3) CH4·(kg VS(fed) d)(-1) and a CH4 concentration in biogas of 68% even when dissolved CO2 levels were increased by a 3 fold over the control unit. An additional uptake of 0.55 kg of exogenous CO2 was achieved in the test AD during the trial period. A 2.5 fold increase in hydrogen (H2) concentration was observed and attributed to CO2 dissolution and to an alteration of the acidogenesis and acetogenesis pathways. A hypothesis for conversion of exogenous CO2 has been proposed, which requires validation by microbial community analysis.

  7. Eye care services utilisation among pregnant women in Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Ibraheem, Waheed A; Ibraheem, Anifat B; Owonikoko, Musliudeen; Tijani, Aramide; Olamoyegun, Michael Adeyemi; AbdSalam, Soliu

    2016-07-01

    One hundred and sixty-five pregnant Nigerian women attending the antenatal clinic of LAUTECH teaching hospital, Ogbomoso, Nigeria between January and April 2014 were interviewed using a structured questionnaire. Socio-demographic characteristics of the respondents were obtained. Respondents were also asked: if they had had their eye examined by an eye specialist during the index pregnancy, frequencies of visit to eye care centers and indications for their visitation. A history of previous eye examination by eye care specialist/visit to eye clinic was considered as eye care utilisation. Selection of eligible subjects who consented to participate in the study was done using simple random technique. Logistic regression model was used to control sociodemographic and obstetric factors in order to determine independent covariate factor influencing the use of eye care services. Among the population studied, only 46 (32%) had eye examination during the index pregnancy. Level of education and occupational status of the respondents were found to be statistically significant factors (p = 0.001 and 0.008, respectively). There is a need for a policy that will encourage regular eye care services usage during pregnancy. PMID:27012975

  8. Biological carbon dioxide utilisation in food waste anaerobic digesters.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Y Bajón; Green, K; Schuler, K; Soares, A; Vale, P; Alibardi, L; Cartmell, E

    2015-12-15

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) enrichment of anaerobic digesters (AD) was previously identified as a potential on-site carbon revalorisation strategy. This study addresses the lack of studies investigating this concept in up-scaled units and the need to understand the mechanisms of exogenous CO2 utilisation. Two pilot-scale ADs treating food waste were monitored for 225 days, with the test unit being periodically injected with CO2 using a bubble column. The test AD maintained a CH4 production rate of 0.56 ± 0.13 m(3) CH4·(kg VS(fed) d)(-1) and a CH4 concentration in biogas of 68% even when dissolved CO2 levels were increased by a 3 fold over the control unit. An additional uptake of 0.55 kg of exogenous CO2 was achieved in the test AD during the trial period. A 2.5 fold increase in hydrogen (H2) concentration was observed and attributed to CO2 dissolution and to an alteration of the acidogenesis and acetogenesis pathways. A hypothesis for conversion of exogenous CO2 has been proposed, which requires validation by microbial community analysis. PMID:26143589

  9. Potential of palm oil utilisation in aquaculture feeds.

    PubMed

    Ng, Wing-Keong

    2002-01-01

    One key ingredient used in the formulation of aquafeed is fish oil, which is produced from small marine pelagic fish and represents a finite fishery resource. At the present time, global fish oil production has reached a plateau and is not expected to increase beyond current levels. Recent estimates suggest that fish oils may be unable to meet demands from the rapidly growing aquaculture industry by as early as 2005. Therefore, there is currently great interest within the aquafeed industry in evaluating alternatives to fish oils. The ever-expanding oil palm cultivation in Malaysia and other tropical countries offers the possibility of an increased and constant availability of palm oil products for aquafeed formulation. Research into the use of palm oil in aquafeed begun around the mid-1990s and this review examines some of the findings from these studies. The use of palm oil in fish diets has generally shown encouraging results. Improved growth, feed efficiency, protein utilisation, reproductive performance and higher concentrations of alpha-tocopherol in fish fillets have been reported. Recent evidence for the ability of palm oil to substitute for fish oil in catfish diets is reviewed. The potential of palm oil use in aquafeed and future experimental directions are suggested. The aquaculture feed industry offers a great avenue to increase and diversify the use of palm oil-based products.

  10. Estimation of an optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate for cancer: setting an evidence-based benchmark for quality cancer care.

    PubMed

    Jacob, S A; Ng, W L; Do, V

    2015-02-01

    There is wide variation in the proportion of newly diagnosed cancer patients who receive chemotherapy, indicating the need for a benchmark rate of chemotherapy utilisation. This study describes an evidence-based model that estimates the proportion of new cancer patients in whom chemotherapy is indicated at least once (defined as the optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate). The optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate can act as a benchmark for measuring and improving the quality of care. Models of optimal chemotherapy utilisation were constructed for each cancer site based on indications for chemotherapy identified from evidence-based treatment guidelines. Data on the proportion of patient- and tumour-related attributes for which chemotherapy was indicated were obtained, using population-based data where possible. Treatment indications and epidemiological data were merged to calculate the optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate. Monte Carlo simulations and sensitivity analyses were used to assess the effect of controversial chemotherapy indications and variations in epidemiological data on our model. Chemotherapy is indicated at least once in 49.1% (95% confidence interval 48.8-49.6%) of all new cancer patients in Australia. The optimal chemotherapy utilisation rates for individual tumour sites ranged from a low of 13% in thyroid cancers to a high of 94% in myeloma. The optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate can serve as a benchmark for planning chemotherapy services on a population basis. The model can be used to evaluate service delivery by comparing the benchmark rate with patterns of care data. The overall estimate for other countries can be obtained by substituting the relevant distribution of cancer types. It can also be used to predict future chemotherapy workload and can be easily modified to take into account future changes in cancer incidence, presentation stage or chemotherapy indications.

  11. Estimation of an optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate for cancer: setting an evidence-based benchmark for quality cancer care.

    PubMed

    Jacob, S A; Ng, W L; Do, V

    2015-02-01

    There is wide variation in the proportion of newly diagnosed cancer patients who receive chemotherapy, indicating the need for a benchmark rate of chemotherapy utilisation. This study describes an evidence-based model that estimates the proportion of new cancer patients in whom chemotherapy is indicated at least once (defined as the optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate). The optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate can act as a benchmark for measuring and improving the quality of care. Models of optimal chemotherapy utilisation were constructed for each cancer site based on indications for chemotherapy identified from evidence-based treatment guidelines. Data on the proportion of patient- and tumour-related attributes for which chemotherapy was indicated were obtained, using population-based data where possible. Treatment indications and epidemiological data were merged to calculate the optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate. Monte Carlo simulations and sensitivity analyses were used to assess the effect of controversial chemotherapy indications and variations in epidemiological data on our model. Chemotherapy is indicated at least once in 49.1% (95% confidence interval 48.8-49.6%) of all new cancer patients in Australia. The optimal chemotherapy utilisation rates for individual tumour sites ranged from a low of 13% in thyroid cancers to a high of 94% in myeloma. The optimal chemotherapy utilisation rate can serve as a benchmark for planning chemotherapy services on a population basis. The model can be used to evaluate service delivery by comparing the benchmark rate with patterns of care data. The overall estimate for other countries can be obtained by substituting the relevant distribution of cancer types. It can also be used to predict future chemotherapy workload and can be easily modified to take into account future changes in cancer incidence, presentation stage or chemotherapy indications. PMID:25455844

  12. Utilisation of health care system by chronic pain patients who applied for disability pensions.

    PubMed

    Højsted, J; Alban, A; Hagild, K; Eriksen, J

    1999-09-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate how economic compensation for disability (disability pensions) to chronic pain patients affected their utilisation of health care services. The study was carried out as a register investigation. Inclusion of 144 study patients was based on records from 1989 and 1990 of the Rehabilitation and Pension Board in the Municipality of Copenhagen. Only patients of Danish origin with chronic non-malignant pain were included. The study period was divided into three: Subperiod 1: The year preceding the submission of the application for a disability pension. Subperiod 2: The period from the submission of the application to the decision was made. Subperiod 3: The year following the final decision of the health authorities. The patients were divided into 4 Subgroups according to whether disability pensions was awarded or rejected, or whether the patients accepted or appealed the decision. Based on number and charges of visits to the GPs the total costs of care in the primary sector were calculated. By means of number of bed days, visits to outpatients clinics, operations, blood samples, and various investigations, the total costs of hospital care were calculated. We found that application for a disability pension in chronic pain patients significantly influenced the health care utilisation. Chronic pain patients had a significantly lower health care utilisation after receiving a disability pension than before the pension was awarded. Chronic pain patients who did not get a disability pension and those who were not satisfied with the level of the pension awarded, maintained their health care utilisation after the decision. The mean health care use by the patients who appealed the level of the pension was three times higher than the mean health care use by the patients who accepted the level of the pension awarded. The study may indicate that lack of or insufficient economic compensation from the social system in chronic pain patients

  13. Disparities in bone density measurement history and osteoporosis medication utilisation in Swiss women: results from the Swiss Health Survey 2007

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Although factors associated with the utilisation of bone density measurement (BDM) and osteoporosis treatment have been regularly assessed in the US and Canada, they have not been effectively analysed in European countries. This study assessed factors associated with the utilisation of BDM and osteoporosis medication (OM) in Switzerland. Methods The Swiss Health Survey 2007 data included self-reported information on BDM and OM for women aged 40 years and older who were living in private households. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to identify sociodemographic, socioeconomic, healthcare-related and osteoporosis risk factors associated with BDM and OM utilisation. Results The lifetime prevalence of BDM was 25.6% (95% CI: 24.3-26.9%) for women aged 40 years and older. BDM utilisation was associated with most sociodemographic factors, all the socioeconomic and healthcare-related factors, and with major osteoporosis risk factors analysed. The prevalence of current OM was 7.8% (95% CI: 7.0-8.6%) and it was associated with some sociodemographic and most healthcare-related factors but only with one socioeconomic factor. Conclusions In Swiss women, ever having had a BDM and current OM were low and utilisation disparities exist according to sociodemographic, socioeconomic and healthcare-related factors. This might foster further health inequalities. The reasons for these findings should be addressed in further studies of the elderly women, including those living in institutions. PMID:23289751

  14. Re-thinking the relationship between long-term condition self-management education and the utilisation of health services.

    PubMed

    Gately, Claire; Rogers, Anne; Sanders, Caroline

    2007-09-01

    Encouraging self-management has been viewed as one means of reducing health service utilisation and contributing to improved demand management. However, the processes and imputed relationship between self-management education skills and health service contact are poorly understood. This paper reports on data from an embedded qualitative study which ran alongside a randomised controlled trial in England designed to test the clinical and cost effectiveness of a self-care support policy which found no statistically significant reductions in health service utilisation. Drawing on concepts from the sociology of chronic illness, analyses suggest that the biographical and social context relevant to individuals' experience of living with a long-term condition, history of health service utilisation, and relationships with health professionals are relevant to understanding the impact of self-management education and related policies aimed at bringing about changes in service use. Our study suggests that future health policy assumptions about utilisation in the context of chronic disease management and self-care support polices may benefit by acknowledging the complex, contextual and recursive nature of health service utilisation operating in the life worlds of patients' experience of living with a long-term condition.

  15. Acceptance and Utilisation of Sulphadoxine-Pyrimethamine and Insecticide-Treated Nets among Pregnant Women in Oyo State, Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    Adeola, Aderonke A.; Okwilagwe, Eugenia A.

    2015-01-01

    The study is an investigation of the acceptance and utilisation of Sulphadoxine-Pyrimethamine (Fansidar), the drug of choice for Intermittent Preventive Treatment in pregnancy, and Insecticide-Treated Nets among pregnant women who access different health facilities in Oyo State, Nigeria. Pregnant women (582) attending government primary healthcare antenatal clinics and 50 attending faith clinics purposively selected responded to structured instruments that were analysed using percentages, t-test correlation, and multiple regression. Acceptance and utilisation of RBM tools were higher in government clinics than faith clinics and in rural areas. Pregnant women in government clinics, 60.8% and 66.8%, and faith clinics, 18% and 38.0%, utilised Roll Back Malaria tools, significant at t(630) = 5.81, p ≤ 0.05, and t(630) = 3.99, p ≤ 0.05, respectively. Pregnant women in rural locations who accessed government clinics utilised Roll Back Malaria tools more than those in urban areas, t(580) = −641, p ≤ 0.05. Number of pregnancies, educational qualification of the pregnant women, and marital status significantly and consistently influenced acceptance and utilisation of these tools. To ensure that set targets are met, the utilization of RBM tools among the two categories of pregnant women can be improved by increasing the supply of the tools and ensuring that treatment is free. PMID:26839732

  16. Improving the Utilisation of Management Information Systems in Secondary Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bosker, R. J.; Branderhorst, E. M.; Visscher, A. J.

    2007-01-01

    Although most secondary schools do use management information systems (MISs), these systems tend not to be used to support higher order managerial activities but are currently primarily used for clerical purposes. This situation is unsatisfactory as MISs fully utilised could offer invaluable support to schools, which are increasingly being granted…

  17. Redirecting Under-Utilised Computer Laboratories into Cluster Computing Facilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Atkinson, John S.; Spenneman, Dirk H. R.; Cornforth, David

    2005-01-01

    Purpose: To provide administrators at an Australian university with data on the feasibility of redirecting under-utilised computer laboratories facilities into a distributed high performance computing facility. Design/methodology/approach: The individual log-in records for each computer located in the computer laboratories at the university were…

  18. A rapid appraisal of access to and utilisation of psychotropic medicines in Bihar, India

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background A major aspect of providing mental healthcare is access to and use of psychotropic medications. Bihar is a state in northeast India with limited mental healthcare provision; consequently access to and utilisation of psychotropic medications are likely to be limited. However, to date there has been no research assessing the situation. This study therefore aims to analyse the psychotropic medications management cycle (selection, procurement, distribution and use), and identify the barriers to access and utilisation, and their underlying causes. Method A rapid appraisal method was used in which primary and secondary data sources were collected and analysed. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty-two stakeholders and twenty-one service users from the government, non-governmental organisation (NGO) and private sectors. The qualitative data collected was analysed using a comparative thematic approach. The research was supported by the NGOs BasicNeeds and Nav Bharat Jagriti Kendra. Results Availability, distance and cost were the main barriers to access and utilisation. At the medical college hospital level a lack of supply appears to be due to a discrepancy between orders made by the hospital and medications supplied by the manufacturers. At the primary health centre and district hospital level the main barrier is a cycle between lack of demand for treatments for mental illness by doctors and patients. Conclusion Further investigation and monitoring is necessary to ensure the availability of psychotropic medications at the medical college hospital level. In addition, implementation of the District Mental Health Programme is likely to address the access and utilisation barriers due to its potential to break the current cycle of lack of demand. PMID:25053976

  19. Utilisation of Intensive Foraging Zones by Female Australian Fur Seals

    PubMed Central

    Hoskins, Andrew J.; Costa, Daniel P.; Arnould, John P. Y.

    2015-01-01

    Within a heterogeneous environment, animals must efficiently locate and utilise foraging patches. One way animals can achieve this is by increasing residency times in areas where foraging success is highest (area-restricted search). For air-breathing diving predators, increased patch residency times can be achieved by altering both surface movements and diving patterns. The current study aimed to spatially identify the areas where female Australian fur seals allocated the most foraging effort, while simultaneously determining the behavioural changes that occur when they increase their foraging intensity. To achieve this, foraging behaviour was successfully recorded with a FastLoc GPS logger and dive behaviour recorder from 29 individual females provisioning pups. Females travelled an average of 118 ± 50 km from their colony during foraging trips that lasted 7.3 ± 3.4 days. Comparison of two methods for calculating foraging intensity (first-passage time and first-passage time modified to include diving behaviour) determined that, due to extended surface intervals where individuals did not travel, inclusion of diving behaviour into foraging analyses was important for this species. Foraging intensity ‘hot spots’ were found to exist in a mosaic of patches within the Bass Basin, primarily to the south-west of the colony. However, the composition of benthic habitat being targeted remains unclear. When increasing their foraging intensity, individuals tended to perform dives around 148 s or greater, with descent/ascent rates of approximately 1.9 m•s-1 or greater and reduced postdive durations. This suggests individuals were maximising their time within the benthic foraging zone. Furthermore, individuals increased tortuosity and decreased travel speeds while at the surface to maximise their time within a foraging location. These results suggest Australian fur seals will modify both surface movements and diving behaviour to maximise their time within a foraging patch

  20. Utilisation of intensive foraging zones by female Australian fur seals.

    PubMed

    Hoskins, Andrew J; Costa, Daniel P; Arnould, John P Y

    2015-01-01

    Within a heterogeneous environment, animals must efficiently locate and utilise foraging patches. One way animals can achieve this is by increasing residency times in areas where foraging success is highest (area-restricted search). For air-breathing diving predators, increased patch residency times can be achieved by altering both surface movements and diving patterns. The current study aimed to spatially identify the areas where female Australian fur seals allocated the most foraging effort, while simultaneously determining the behavioural changes that occur when they increase their foraging intensity. To achieve this, foraging behaviour was successfully recorded with a FastLoc GPS logger and dive behaviour recorder from 29 individual females provisioning pups. Females travelled an average of 118 ± 50 km from their colony during foraging trips that lasted 7.3 ± 3.4 days. Comparison of two methods for calculating foraging intensity (first-passage time and first-passage time modified to include diving behaviour) determined that, due to extended surface intervals where individuals did not travel, inclusion of diving behaviour into foraging analyses was important for this species. Foraging intensity 'hot spots' were found to exist in a mosaic of patches within the Bass Basin, primarily to the south-west of the colony. However, the composition of benthic habitat being targeted remains unclear. When increasing their foraging intensity, individuals tended to perform dives around 148 s or greater, with descent/ascent rates of approximately 1.9 m•s-1 or greater and reduced postdive durations. This suggests individuals were maximising their time within the benthic foraging zone. Furthermore, individuals increased tortuosity and decreased travel speeds while at the surface to maximise their time within a foraging location. These results suggest Australian fur seals will modify both surface movements and diving behaviour to maximise their time within a foraging patch.

  1. Structural Insight into the Clostridium difficile Ethanolamine Utilisation Microcompartment

    PubMed Central

    Faulds-Pain, Alexandra; Lewis, Richard J.; Marles-Wright, Jon

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial microcompartments form a protective proteinaceous barrier around metabolic enzymes that process unstable or toxic chemical intermediates. The genome of the virulent, multidrug-resistant Clostridium difficile 630 strain contains an operon, eut, encoding a bacterial microcompartment with genes for the breakdown of ethanolamine and its utilisation as a source of reduced nitrogen and carbon. The C. difficile eut operon displays regulatory genetic elements and protein encoding regions in common with homologous loci found in the genomes of other bacteria, including the enteric pathogens Salmonella enterica and Enterococcus faecalis. The crystal structures of two microcompartment shell proteins, CD1908 and CD1918, and an uncharacterised protein with potential enzymatic activity, CD1925, were determined by X-ray crystallography. CD1908 and CD1918 display the same protein fold, though the order of secondary structure elements is permuted in CD1908 and this protein displays an N-terminal β-strand extension. These proteins form hexamers with molecules related by crystallographic and non-crystallographic symmetry. The structure of CD1925 has a cupin β-barrel fold and a putative active site that is distinct from the metal-ion dependent catalytic cupins. Thin-section transmission electron microscopy of Escherichia coli over-expressing eut proteins indicates that CD1918 is capable of self-association into arrays, suggesting an organisational role for CD1918 in the formation of this microcompartment. The work presented provides the basis for further study of the architecture and function of the C. difficile eut microcompartment, its role in metabolism and the wider consequences of intestinal colonisation and virulence in this pathogen. PMID:23144756

  2. Utilisation of Wearable Computing for Space Programmes Test Activities Optimasation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basso, V.; Lazzari, D.; Alemanni, M.

    2004-08-01

    New technologies are assuming a relevant importance in the Space business domain also in the Assembly Integration and Test (AIT) activities allowing process optimization and capability that were unthinkable only few years ago. This paper has the aim to describe Alenia Spazio (ALS) gained experience on the remote interaction techniques as a results of collaborations established both on European Communities (EC) initiatives, with Alenia Aeronautica (ALA) and Politecnico of Torino (POLITO). The H/W and S/W components performances increase and costs reduction due to the home computing massive utilization (especially demanded by the games business) together with the network technology possibility (offered by the web as well as the hi-speed links and the wireless communications) allow today to re-think the traditional AIT process activities in the light of the multimedia data exchange: graphical, voice video and by sure more in the future. Aerospace business confirm its innovation vocation which in the year '80 represents the cradle of the CAD systems and today is oriented to the 3D data visualization/ interaction technologies and remote visualisation/ interaction in collaborative way on a much more user friendly bases (i.e. not for specialists). Fig. 1 collects AIT extended scenario studied and adopted by ALS in these years. ALS experimented two possibilities of remote visualization/interaction: Portable [e.g. Fig.2 Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), Wearable] and walls (e.g.VR-Lab) screens as both 2D/3D visualisation and interaction devices which could support many types of traditional (mainly based on EGSE and PDM/CAD utilisation/reports) company internal AIT applications: 1. design review support 2. facility management 3. storage management 4. personnel training 5. integration sequences definition 6. assembly and test operations follow up 7. documentation review and external access to AIT activities for remote operations (e.g. tele-testing) EGSE Portable Clean room

  3. Milk utilisation patterns in the low-input production systems in South Africa.

    PubMed

    Mapekula, Monde; Chimonyo, Michael; Mapiye, Cletos; Dzama, Kennedy

    2010-10-01

    Understanding the utilisation patterns of milk assists in designing appropriate dairy development schemes in rural communities. The objective of the study was to determine milk utilisation patterns in different smallholder farming systems in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. Data were collected through the administration of recording sheets to 130 randomly selected households in Alice, Fort Beaufort and Queenstown districts. Amounts of milk produced per household ranged from 9 to 21 l per household per day. Milk consumption/household/day was similar among the three districts. Milk consumption in the early lactation doubled the amount consumed in late lactation (P < 0.05). Milk in the communal areas was largely utilised as fresh or sour milk. Fresh milk was mostly used in tea/coffee or to make porridge for children. Sour milk was consumed with thick boiled maize meal. Fort Beaufort (10.2 +/- 1.37 l/day) had the highest sour milk sales whilst Queenstown had the highest fresh milk sales (9.7 +/- 5.57 l/day). It was concluded that quantities of milk consumed or sold as fresh or sour were generally low and varied across smallholder farming systems.

  4. The use of secure anonymised data linkage to determine changes in healthcare utilisation following severe open tibial fractures.

    PubMed

    Page, Piers R J; Trickett, Ryan W; Rahman, Shakeel M; Walters, Angharad; Pinder, Leila M; Brooks, Caroline J; Hutchings, Hayley; Pallister, Ian

    2015-07-01

    Severe open fractures of the lower limbs are complex injuries requiring expert multidisciplinary management in appropriate orthoplastic centres. This study aimed to assess the impact of open fractures on healthcare utilisation and test the null hypotheses that there is no difference in healthcare utilisation between the year before and year after injury, and that there is no difference in healthcare utilisation in the year post-injury between patients admitted directly to an orthoplastic centre in keeping with the joint BOA/BAPRAS standards and those having initial surgery elsewhere. This retrospective cohort study utilising secure anonymised information linkage (SAIL), a novel databank of anonymised nationally pooled health records, recruited patients over 18 years of age sustaining severe open lower limb fractures managed primarily or secondarily at our centre and who had data available in the SAIL databank. 101 patients met inclusion criteria and 90 of these had records in the SAIL databank. The number of days in hospital, number of primary care attendances, number of outpatient attendances and number of emergency department attendances in the years prior and subsequent to injury were recorded. Patients sustaining open fractures had significantly different healthcare utilisation in the year after injury when compared with the year before, in terms of days spent in hospital (23.42 vs. 1.70, p=0.000), outpatient attendances (11.98 vs. 1.05, p=0.000), primary care attendances (29.48 vs. 11.99, p=0.000) and emergency department presentations (0.2 vs. 0.01, p=0.025). Patients admitted directly to orthoplastic centres had significantly fewer operations (1.78 vs. 3.31) and GP attendances (23.6 vs. 33.52) than those transferred in subsequent to initial management in other units. There is a significant increase in healthcare utilisation after open tibial fracture. Adherence to national standards minimises the impact of this on both patients and health services.

  5. Microbial utilisation of natural organic wastes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ilyin, V. K.; Smirnov, I. A.; Soldatov, P. E.; Korniushenkova, I. N.; Grinin, A. S.; Lykov, I. N.; Safronova, S. A.

    2004-03-01

    The waste management strategy for the future should meet the benefits of humanity safety, respect principals of planet ecology, and compatibility with other habitability systems. For these purpose the waste management technologies, relevant to application of the biodegradation properties of bacteria are of great value. The biological treatment method is based upon the biodegradation of organic substances by various microorganisms. The advantage of the biodegradation waste management in general: it allows to diminish the volume of organic wastes, the biological hazard of the wastes is controlled and this system may be compatible with the other systems. The objectives of our study were: to evaluate effectiveness of microbial biodegradation of non-pretreated substrate, to construct phneumoautomatic digester for organic wastes biodegradation and to study microbial characteristics of active sludge samples used as inoculi in biodegradation experiment. The technology of vegetable wastes treatment was elaborated in IBMP and BMSTU. For this purpose the special unit was created where the degradation process is activated by enforced reinvention of portions of elaborated biogas into digester. This technology allows to save energy normally used for electromechanical agitation and to create optimal environment for anaerobic bacteria growth. The investigations were performed on waste simulator, which imitates physical and chemical content of food wastes calculated basing on the data on food wastes of moderate Russian city. The volume of created experimental sample of digester is 40 l. The basic system elements of device are digesters, gas receiver, remover of drops and valve monitoring and thermal control system. In our testing we used natural food wastes to measure basic parameters and time of biodegradation process. The diminution rate of organic gained 76% from initial mass taking part within 9 days of fermentation. The biogas production achieved 46 l per 1 kg of substrate

  6. Synthesis, characterisation and microbial utilisation of amorphous polysugars from lactose.

    PubMed

    Daines, Alison M; Smart, Zlatka; Sims, Ian M; Tannock, Gerald W; Hinkley, Simon F R

    2015-03-01

    The melt polymerisations of glucose, galactose, xylose and fucose with citric acid, and mixtures of sugars therein are reported. Characterisation of the citric-acid catalysed reaction products indicated similar degrees of branched polymerisation but differences in the overall molecular weight of the polymers produced. The dairy by-product lactose could not be polymerised in a similar fashion but was shown to be readily hydrolysed using microwave radiation and a polymer generated from the melt condensation of the resultant glucose and galactose monosaccharides. A preliminary assessment of the bifido-bacterial utilisation of the lactose-derived polymerised products demonstrated a significantly different growth profile compared to commercially utilised galactooligosaccharides (GOS). PMID:25498629

  7. The European Space Agency standard for space packet utilisation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaufeler, J.-F.; Parkes, A.; Pidgeon, A.

    1993-01-01

    This paper presents the ESA concept for the use of CCSDS defined Telemetry and Telecommand Packets at the application level. These Packets are used to monitor and control remotely a space born application. This concept is defined in a Packet Utilisation Standard (PUS) which should become applicable for all ESA missions using Packets. The production of this standard is under the responsibility of an ESA standardization group called 'COES'.

  8. Skill Formation and Utilisation in the Post-Soviet Transition: Higher Education Planning in Post-Soviet Georgia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gvaramadze, Irakli

    2010-01-01

    Changes in the former Soviet system had a dramatic influence on higher education in Georgia. The main objective of the current article is to analyse implications of the post-Soviet transition for the skill formation and skill utilisation system in Georgia. In particular, the study analyses recent trends in Georgian higher education including…

  9. Impediments to Effective Utilisation of Information and Communication Technology Tools in Selected Universities in the North-Eastern Nigeria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Momoh, Mustapha

    2010-01-01

    This study examined the impediments to effective use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) tools in Nigerian universities. Series of research conducted on the factors militating against computerisation indicated that, there were impediments to effective utilisation of ICT tools in most developing countries. In the light of this, the…

  10. Motivational Strategies and Utilisation of Internet Resources as Determinants of Research Productivity of Lecturers in Universities of Agriculture in Nigeria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ajegbomogun, Fredrick Olatunji; Popoola, Sunday Olarenwaju

    2013-01-01

    This study examined motivational strategies and utilisation of Internet resources as determinants of research productivity of lecturers in universities of agriculture in Nigeria. One thousand, one hundred and thirty two (1,132) copies of the questionnaire were administered on the lecturers in universities of agriculture in Nigeria. Eight hundred…

  11. Utilisation and Impact of the Essential Electronic Agricultural Database (TEEAL) on Library Services in a Nigerian University of Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oduwole, A. A.; Sowole, A. O.

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined the utilisation of the Essential Electronic Agricultural Library database (TEEAL) at the University of Agriculture Library, Abeokuta, Nigeria. Design/methodology/approach: Data collection was by questionnaire following a purposive sampling technique. A total of 104 out 150 (69.3 per cent) responses were received and…

  12. A Qualitative Case Study Approach To Examine Information Resources Management. (Utilisation d'une Approche Qualitative par Methode de cas pour Etudier la Gestion des Ressources D'information).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bergeron, Pierrette

    1997-01-01

    Illustrates how a qualitative approach was used to study the complex and poorly defined concept of information resources management. Explains the general approach to data collection, its advantages and limitations, and the process used to analyze the data. Presents results, along with lessons learned through using method. (Author/AEF)

  13. Health insurance determines antenatal, delivery and postnatal care utilisation: evidence from the Ghana Demographic and Health Surveillance data

    PubMed Central

    Browne, Joyce L; Kayode, Gbenga A; Arhinful, Daniel; Fidder, Samuel A J; Grobbee, Diederick E; Klipstein-Grobusch, Kerstin

    2016-01-01

    Objective This study aims to evaluate the effect of maternal health insurance status on the utilisation of antenatal, skilled delivery and postnatal care. Design A population-based cross-sectional study. Setting and participants We utilised the 2008 Demographic and Health Survey data of Ghana, which included 2987 women who provided information on maternal health insurance status. Primary outcomes Utilisation of antenatal, skilled delivery and postnatal care. Statistical analyses Multivariable logistic regression was applied to determine the independent association between maternal health insurance and utilisation of antenatal, skilled delivery and postnatal care. Results After adjusting for socioeconomic, demographic and obstetric factors, we observed that among insured women the likelihood of having antenatal care increased by 96% (OR 1.96; 95% CI 1.52 to 2.52; p value<0.001) and of skilled delivery by 129% (OR 2.29; 95% CI 1.92 to 2.74; p value<0.001), while postnatal care among insured women increased by 61% (OR 1.61; 95% CI 1.17 to 2.21; p value<0.01). Conclusions This study demonstrated that maternal health insurance status plays a significant role in the uptake of the maternal, neonatal and child health continuum of care service. PMID:26993621

  14. Professional Service Utilisation among Patients with Severe Mental Disorders

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Generally, patients with serious mental disorders (SMD) are frequent users of services who generate high care-related costs. Current reforms aim to increase service integration and primary care for improved patient care and health-care efficiency. This article identifies and compares variables associated with the use by patients with SMD of services offered by psychiatrists, case managers, and general practitioners (GPs). It also compares frequent and infrequent service use. Method One hundred forty patients with SMD from five regions in Quebec, Canada, were interviewed on their use of services in the previous year. Patients were also required to complete a questionnaire on needs-assessment. In addition, data were collected from clinical records. Descriptive, bivariate, and multivariate analyses were conducted. Results Most patients used services from psychiatrists and case managers, but no more than half consulted GPs. Most patients were followed at least by two professionals, chiefly psychiatrists and case managers. Care access, continuity of care, and total help received were the most important variables associated with the different types of professional consultation. These variables were also associated with frequent use of professional service, as compared with infrequent service use. In all, enabling factors rather than need factors were the core predictors of frequency of service utilisation by patients with SMD. Conclusion This study reveals that health care system organisation and professional practice - rather than patient need profiles - are the core predictors of professional consultation by patients with SMD. The homogeneity of our study population, i.e. mainly users with schizophrenia, recently discharged from hospital, may partly account for these results. Our findings also underscored the limited involvement of GPs in this patient population's care. As comorbidity is often associated with serious mental disorders, closer follow-up by GPs

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  16. An international review of the patterns and determinants of health service utilisation by adult cancer survivors

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background There is a need to review factors related to health service utilisation by the increasing number of cancer survivors in order to inform care planning and the organisation and delivery of services. Methods Studies were identified via systematic searches of Medline, PsycINFO, CINAHL, Social Science Citation Index and the SEER-MEDICARE library. Methodological quality was assessed using STROBE; and the Andersen Behavioural Model was used as a framework to structure, organise and analyse the results of the review. Results Younger, white cancer survivors were most likely to receive follow-up screening, preventive care, visit their physician, utilise professional mental health services and least likely to be hospitalised. Utilisation rates of other health professionals such as physiotherapists were low. Only studies of health service use conducted in the USA investigated the role of type of health insurance and ethnicity. There appeared to be disparate service use among US samples in terms of ethnicity and socio-demographic status, regardless of type of health insurance provision s- this may be explained by underlying differences in health-seeking behaviours. Overall, use of follow-up care appeared to be lower than expected and barriers existed for particular groups of cancer survivors. Conclusions Studies focussed on the use of a specific type of service rather than adopting a whole-system approach and future health services research should address this shortcoming. Overall, there is a need to improve access to care for all cancer survivors. Studies were predominantly US-based focussing mainly on breast or colorectal cancer. Thus, the generalisability of findings to other health-care systems and cancer sites is unclear. The Andersen Behavioural Model provided an appropriate framework for studying and understanding health service use among cancer survivors. The active involvement of physicians and use of personalised care plans are required in order to ensure

  17. Are cognitive impairment and depressive mood associated with increased service utilisation in community-dwelling elderly people?

    PubMed

    Roelands, Marc; Van Oyen, Herman; Depoorter, AnneMarie; Baro, Franz; Van Oost, Paulette

    2003-01-01

    The healthcare and social services utilisation of elderly people with mental disorders has not been sufficiently described, although such knowledge could indicate directions for preventive and curative interventions, and suggest unmet service needs. The aim of the present study was to examine cognitive impairment and depressive mood as correlates of specific healthcare and social services utilisation of community-dwelling elderly people. A randomly selected population sample of 1134 community-dwelling individuals aged 65 years and over living in a defined area were interviewed at home. Cognitive impairment was measured by the Mini Mental State Examination and depressive mood by the Centre for Epidemiologic Studies -- Depression scale. Cognitive impairment and depressive mood were related to the number of home care services used, and to the utilisaton of every specific healthcare and social service. After controlling for confounding variables (i.e. age, sex, education, co-residence and disabilities), service utilisation was still predicted by depressive mood, but not by cognitive impairment. Interventions to prevent and cure depressive mood should be considered to decrease the service needs of community-dwelling elderly people. Unmet service needs are suggested since cognitive impairment does not result in increased service utilisation.

  18. A roadmap for the exploration and utilisation of lunar resources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casanova, I.

    2003-04-01

    Exploration and in-situ utilisation of lunar resources are major steps to be followed prior to the establishment of any permanent lunar (or planetary) outpost. Among potential resources in our natural satellite, lunar oxygen can be considered as one of the most readily available and of critical importance, both as a propellant and in life-support systems. A wide variety of methods have been proposed for oxygen extraction from the lunar regolith. The feasibility of such procedures is evaluated on the basis of minimisation of materials transportation from Earth, energy requirements and processing simplicity. From an exploration point of view, detailed mapping of materials with an engineering interest constrains the implementation (location and timing) of oxygen extraction technologies on the lunar surface. Global coverage with ESA's SMART-1 D-CIXS X-ray, and complementary mineralogical data from the SIR infrared spectrometres will provide information of outmost interest for the identification of resources through analysis of Fe, Al, Si, Mg (and possibly other elements that may be identified under favourable solar conditions). Laboratory studies of lunar samples show significant bulk compositional differences between regolith samples, pristine rocks (e.g. basalts, anorthosites) and pyroclastic deposits. Their Si-normalised Fe/Al and Mg/Al signatures allow positive identification of each class of materials from an orbital platform equipped with an X-ray apparatus. High-Ti mare basalts also show a specific Fe/Al ratio and, consequently, DCIXS data can complement the results from Lunar Prospector's gamma-ray spectrometre to map ilmenite-rich materials. In the mid- term, lunar materials (especially the fine-grained regolith) may be used as well for in-situ construction of infrastructures that aid the implementation of and operations in a permanent lunar outpost. In this paper, a review of available technologies for lunar material processing is also presented. Finally, it

  19. Expenditure and resource utilisation for cervical screening in Australia

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The National Cervical Screening Program in Australia currently recommends that women aged 18–69 years are screened with conventional cytology every 2 years. Publicly funded HPV vaccination was introduced in 2007, and partly as a consequence, a renewal of the screening program that includes a review of screening recommendations has recently been announced. This study aimed to provide a baseline for such a review by quantifying screening program resource utilisation and costs in 2010. Methods A detailed model of current cervical screening practice in Australia was constructed and we used data from the Victorian Cervical Cytology Registry to model age-specific compliance with screening and follow-up. We applied model-derived rate estimates to the 2010 Australian female population to calculate costs and numbers of colposcopies, biopsies, treatments for precancer and cervical cancers in that year, assuming that the numbers of these procedures were not yet substantially impacted by vaccination. Results The total cost of the screening program in 2010 (excluding administrative program overheads) was estimated to be A$194.8M. We estimated that a total of 1.7 million primary screening smears costing $96.7M were conducted, a further 188,900 smears costing $10.9M were conducted to follow-up low grade abnormalities, 70,900 colposcopy and 34,100 histological evaluations together costing $21.2M were conducted, and about 18,900 treatments for precancerous lesions were performed (including retreatments), associated with a cost of $45.5M for treatment and post-treatment follow-up. We also estimated that $20.5M was spent on work-up and treatment for approximately 761 women diagnosed with invasive cervical cancer. Overall, an estimated $23 was spent in 2010 for each adult woman in Australia on cervical screening program-related activities. Conclusions Approximately half of the total cost of the screening program is spent on delivery of primary screening tests; but the

  20. Fish utilisation of wetland nurseries with complex hydrological connectivity.

    PubMed

    Davis, Ben; Johnston, Ross; Baker, Ronald; Sheaves, Marcus

    2012-01-01

    The physical and faunal characteristics of coastal wetlands are driven by dynamics of hydrological connectivity to adjacent habitats. Wetlands on estuary floodplains are particularly dynamic, driven by a complex interplay of tidal marine connections and seasonal freshwater flooding, often with unknown consequences for fish using these habitats. To understand the patterns and subsequent processes driving fish assemblage structure in such wetlands, we examined the nature and diversity of temporal utilisation patterns at a species or genus level over three annual cycles in a tropical Australian estuarine wetland system. Four general patterns of utilisation were apparent based on CPUE and size-structure dynamics: (i) classic nursery utlisation (use by recently settled recruits for their first year) (ii) interrupted peristence (iii) delayed recruitment (iv) facultative wetland residence. Despite the small self-recruiting 'facultative wetland resident' group, wetland occupancy seems largely driven by connectivity to the subtidal estuary channel. Variable connection regimes (i.e. frequency and timing of connections) within and between different wetland units (e.g. individual pools, lagoons, swamps) will therefore interact with the diversity of species recruitment schedules to generate variable wetland assemblages in time and space. In addition, the assemblage structure is heavily modified by freshwater flow, through simultaneously curtailing persistence of the 'interrupted persistence' group, establishing connectivity for freshwater spawned members of both the 'facultative wetland resident' and 'delayed recruitment group', and apparently mediating use of intermediate nursery habitats for marine-spawned members of the 'delayed recruitment' group. The diversity of utilisation pattern and the complexity of associated drivers means assemblage compositions, and therefore ecosystem functioning, is likely to vary among years depending on variations in hydrological connectivity

  1. Fish Utilisation of Wetland Nurseries with Complex Hydrological Connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Ben; Johnston, Ross; Baker, Ronald; Sheaves, Marcus

    2012-01-01

    The physical and faunal characteristics of coastal wetlands are driven by dynamics of hydrological connectivity to adjacent habitats. Wetlands on estuary floodplains are particularly dynamic, driven by a complex interplay of tidal marine connections and seasonal freshwater flooding, often with unknown consequences for fish using these habitats. To understand the patterns and subsequent processes driving fish assemblage structure in such wetlands, we examined the nature and diversity of temporal utilisation patterns at a species or genus level over three annual cycles in a tropical Australian estuarine wetland system. Four general patterns of utilisation were apparent based on CPUE and size-structure dynamics: (i) classic nursery utlisation (use by recently settled recruits for their first year) (ii) interrupted peristence (iii) delayed recruitment (iv) facultative wetland residence. Despite the small self-recruiting ‘facultative wetland resident’ group, wetland occupancy seems largely driven by connectivity to the subtidal estuary channel. Variable connection regimes (i.e. frequency and timing of connections) within and between different wetland units (e.g. individual pools, lagoons, swamps) will therefore interact with the diversity of species recruitment schedules to generate variable wetland assemblages in time and space. In addition, the assemblage structure is heavily modified by freshwater flow, through simultaneously curtailing persistence of the ’interrupted persistence’ group, establishing connectivity for freshwater spawned members of both the ‘facultative wetland resident’ and ‘delayed recruitment group’, and apparently mediating use of intermediate nursery habitats for marine-spawned members of the ‘delayed recruitment’ group. The diversity of utilisation pattern and the complexity of associated drivers means assemblage compositions, and therefore ecosystem functioning, is likely to vary among years depending on variations in

  2. Self-Assembled Hydrogels Utilising Polymer-Nanoparticle Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Appel, Eric A.; Tibbitt, Mark W.; Webber, Matthew J.; Mattix, Bradley A.; Veiseh, Omid

    2015-01-01

    Mouldable hydrogels that flow upon applied stress and rapidly self-heal are increasingly utilised as they afford minimally invasive delivery and conformal application. Here we report a new paradigm for the fabrication of self-assembled hydrogels with shear-thinning and self-healing properties employing rationally engineered polymer-nanoparticle interactions. Biopolymer derivatives are linked together by selective adsorption to nanoparticles. The transient and reversible interactions between biopolymers and nanoparticles enable flow under applied shear stress, followed by rapid self-healing when the stress is relaxed. We develop a physical description of polymer-nanoparticle gel formation that is utilised to design biocompatible gels for minimally-invasive drug delivery. Owing to the hierarchical structure of the gel, both hydrophilic and hydrophobic drugs can be entrapped and delivered with differential release profiles, both in vitro and in vivo. The work introduces a facile and generalizable class of mouldable hydrogels amenable to a range of biomedical and industrial applications. PMID:25695516

  3. Utilisation of steviol glycosides from Stevia rebaudiana (Bertoni) by lactobacilli and bifidobacteria in in vitro conditions.

    PubMed

    Kunová, Gabriela; Rada, Vojtěch; Vidaillac, Adrien; Lisova, Ivana

    2014-05-01

    In the current study, eight strains of bifidobacteria and seven strains of lactobacilli were tested for their ability to grow in the presence of rebaudioside A and steviol glycosides from the sweetener Natusweet M001 originating from herb Stevia rebaudiana (Bertoni). Stevia is gaining popularity as a natural, non-caloric sugar substitute, and recently, it was allowed as a food additive by European Union too. Utilisation of steviol glycosides by intestinal microbiota suggests that they might have potential prebiotic effect. Based on the evaluation of bacterial density and pH values in our in vitro study, it was found that lactobacilli and bifidobacteria tested were able to utilise steviol glycosides as a carbon source only to a very limited extent. All strains tested showed significantly lower change in the absorbance A540 (P < 0.05) and pH decrease of the growth media as compared with the positive controls (medium containing glucose as a carbon source and de Man Rogosa Sharpe broth). We concluded that a suggested prebiotic effect was not confirmed either in the case of rebaudioside A or in the case of the sweetener Natusweet M001 containing a mixture of steviol glycosides.

  4. Access and utilisation of maternity care for disabled women who experience domestic abuse: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Although disabled women are significantly more likely to experience domestic abuse during pregnancy than non-disabled women, very little is known about how maternity care access and utilisation is affected by the co-existence of disability and domestic abuse. This systematic review of the literature explored how domestic abuse impacts upon disabled women’s access to maternity services. Methods Eleven articles were identified through a search of six electronic databases and data were analysed to identify: the factors that facilitate or compromise access to care; the consequences of inadequate care for pregnant women’s health and wellbeing; and the effectiveness of existing strategies for improvement. Results Findings indicate that a mental health diagnosis, poor relationships with health professionals and environmental barriers can compromise women’s utilisation of maternity services. Domestic abuse can both compromise, and catalyse, access to services and social support is a positive factor when accessing care. Delayed and inadequate care has adverse effects on women’s physical and psychological health, however further research is required to fully explore the nature and extent of these consequences. Only one study identified strategies currently being used to improve access to services for disabled women experiencing abuse. Conclusions Based upon the barriers and facilitators identified within the review, we suggest that future strategies for improvement should focus on: understanding women’s reasons for accessing care; fostering positive relationships; being women-centred; promoting environmental accessibility; and improving the strength of the evidence base. PMID:25029907

  5. Allele Mining Strategies: Principles and Utilisation for Blast Resistance Genes in Rice (Oryza sativa L.).

    PubMed

    Ashkani, Sadegh; Yusop, Mohd Rafii; Shabanimofrad, Mahmoodreza; Azady, Amin; Ghasemzadeh, Ali; Azizi, Parisa; Latif, Mohammad Abdul

    2015-01-01

    Allele mining is a promising way to dissect naturally occurring allelic variants of candidate genes with essential agronomic qualities. With the identification, isolation and characterisation of blast resistance genes in rice, it is now possible to dissect the actual allelic variants of these genes within an array of rice cultivars via allele mining. Multiple alleles from the complex locus serve as a reservoir of variation to generate functional genes. The routine sequence exchange is one of the main mechanisms of R gene evolution and development. Allele mining for resistance genes can be an important method to identify additional resistance alleles and new haplotypes along with the development of allele-specific markers for use in marker-assisted selection. Allele mining can be visualised as a vital link between effective utilisation of genetic and genomic resources in genomics-driven modern plant breeding. This review studies the actual concepts and potential of mining approaches for the discovery of alleles and their utilisation for blast resistance genes in rice. The details provided here will be important to provide the rice breeder with a worthwhile introduction to allele mining and its methodology for breakthrough discovery of fresh alleles hidden in hereditary diversity, which is vital for crop improvement.

  6. Technologies for the utilisation of biogenic waste in the bioeconomy.

    PubMed

    O'Callaghan, Kenneth

    2016-05-01

    A brief review has been done of technologies involved in the exploitation of biogenic wastes, in order to provide an introduction to the subject from the technological perspective. Biogenic waste materials and biomass have historically been utilised for thousands of years, but a new conversation is emerging on the role of these materials in modern bioeconomies. Due to the nature of the products and commodities now required, a modern bioeconomy is not simply a rerun of former ones. This new dialogue needs to help us understand how technologies for managing and processing biogenic wastes--both established and novel--should be deployed and integrated (or not) to meet the requirements of the sustainability, closed-loop and resource-security agendas that evidently sit behind the bioeconomy aspirations now being voiced in many countries and regions of the world.

  7. Technologies for the utilisation of biogenic waste in the bioeconomy.

    PubMed

    O'Callaghan, Kenneth

    2016-05-01

    A brief review has been done of technologies involved in the exploitation of biogenic wastes, in order to provide an introduction to the subject from the technological perspective. Biogenic waste materials and biomass have historically been utilised for thousands of years, but a new conversation is emerging on the role of these materials in modern bioeconomies. Due to the nature of the products and commodities now required, a modern bioeconomy is not simply a rerun of former ones. This new dialogue needs to help us understand how technologies for managing and processing biogenic wastes--both established and novel--should be deployed and integrated (or not) to meet the requirements of the sustainability, closed-loop and resource-security agendas that evidently sit behind the bioeconomy aspirations now being voiced in many countries and regions of the world. PMID:26769498

  8. Phytase effects on the efficiency of utilisation and blood concentrations of phosphorus and calcium in Pekin ducks.

    PubMed

    Rodehutscord, M; Hempel, R; Wendt, P

    2006-06-01

    1. The objective was to study the effects of a supplementation of a 6-phytase derived from the Peniophora lycii gene in the White Pekin duck. 2. In two balance studies, low-phosphorus (P) diets consisting mainly of maize, solvent extracted soybean meal and solvent extracted sunflower meal were supplemented with phytase up to concentrations of 1500 U/kg (Study 1) or 2000 U/kg (Study 2). Each diet (phytase level) was fed to 8 to 10 individually penned ducks. The intake and excretion of each animal was measured for 5 consecutive days when ducks were in their third week of life. Responses were described by nonlinear regression. 3. Although the basal diets from the two studies were similar in ingredient composition, efficiencies of P utilisation (P accretion/P intake x 100) for the unsupplemented basal diets were 39% in Study 1 and 30% in Study 2. Phytase supplementation significantly improved P utilisation up to levels of about 55% in both studies. A plateau in P utilisation with an increase in phytase supplementation was achieved in Study 2, but not in Study 1. The enzyme was more efficient in Study 2 than in Study 1 at low rates of supplementation. Utilisation of calcium (Ca) was significantly improved by phytase supplementation. Accretions of P and Ca increased at a constant ratio. 4. In a 5-week growth study, diets with an intentionally marginal P level were used. Diets were fed either unsupplemented or supplemented with 1000 or 10,000 U/kg of phytase. Eight pens of 10 sex-separated ducks each (4 pens per sex) were allocated to each dietary treatment. 5. Phytase significantly improved the growth of ducks of both sexes between d 1 and 21, but not between d 22 and 35. Feed conversion rate was not affected by treatment. Blood serum phosphate concentrations, but not calcium, were significantly increased by phytase supplementation. Blood concentrations of creatinine, aspartate aminotransferase and lactate dehydrogenase remained unaffected while alanine aminotransferase

  9. The Effect of Urban Basic Medical Insurance on Health Service Utilisation in Shaanxi Province, China: A Comparison of Two Schemes

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Jianmin; Yang, Xiaowei; Yan, Ju'e; Xue, Qinxiang; Chen, Gang

    2014-01-01

    Background Urban population in China is mainly covered by two medical insurance schemes: the Urban Employee Basic Medical Insurance (UEBMI) for urban employees in formal sector and the Urban Resident Basic Medical Insurance (URBMI) for the left urban residents, mainly the unemployed, the elderly and children. This paper studies the effects of UEBMI and URBMI on health services utilisation in Shaanxi Province, Western China. Methods Cross-sectional data from the 4th National Health Services Survey - Shaanxi Province was studied. The propensity score matching and the coarsened exact matching methods have been used to estimate the average medical insurance effect on the insured. Results Compared to the uninsured, robust results suggest that UEBMI had significantly increased the outpatient health services utilisation in the last two weeks (p<0.10), whilst the significant effect on hospitalisation was evident in the CEM method (p<0.10). The effect of URBMI was limited in that although being insured was associated with higher health services utilisation, compared with the uninsured, none of the improvement was statistically significant (p>0.10). It was also found that compared with the uninsured, basic medical insurance enrollees were more likely to purchase inpatient treatments in lower levels of hospitals, consistent with the incentive of the benefit package design. Conclusion Basic Medical insurance schemes have shown a positive but limited effect on increasing health services utilisation in Shaanxi Province. The benefit package design of higher reimbursement rates for lower level hospitals has induced the insured to use medical services in lower level hospitals for inpatient services. PMID:24740282

  10. Human papilloma virus strain detection utilising custom-designed oligonucleotide microarrays.

    PubMed

    Ayers, Duncan; Platt, Mark; Javad, Farzad; Day, Philip J R

    2011-01-01

    Within the past 15 years, the utilisation of microarray technology for the detection of specific pathogen strains has increased rapidly. Presently, it is possible to simply purchase a pre-manufactured "off the shelf " oligonucleotide microarray bearing a wide variety of known signature DNA sequences previously identified in the organism being studied. Consequently, a hybridisation analysis may be used to pinpoint which strain/s is present in any given clinical sample. However, there exists a problem if the study necessitates the identification of novel sequences which are not represented in commercially available microarray chips. Ideally, such investigations require an in situ oligonucleotide microarray platform with the capacity to synthesise microarrays bearing probe sequences designed solely by the researcher. This chapter will focus on the employment of the Combimatrix® B3 CustomArray™ for the synthesis of reusable, bespoke microarrays for the purpose of discerning multiple Human Papilloma Virus strains. PMID:20938834

  11. Effects of drug price reduction and prescribing restrictions on expenditures and utilisation of antihypertensive drugs in Korea

    PubMed Central

    Yoo, Ki-Bong; Lee, Sang Gyu; Park, Sohee; Kim, Tae Hyun; Ahn, Jeonghoon; Cho, Mee-Hyun; Park, Eun-Cheol

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To evaluate the quantitative effects of the drug price reduction on pharmaceutical expenditures and the new guidelines to restrict prescribing on drug utilisation for antihypertensive drugs. Design We used an interrupted time series design with the National patient sample data of Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service in South Korea. Methods 54 295 participants who were with primary hypertension from the National patient sample data of Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service were included. The study period was from March 2011 to December 2013. The dependent variables were antihypertensive drug costs, antihypertensive drug cost per prescribing day, daily drug utilisation, average number of drugs per month, percentage of original drugs per prescription, drug overutilisation and prohibited combinations. Segmented regression analysis was used. Results The drug price reduction reduced expenditure (US$−1.51, −10.2%), and the new guidelines reduced expenditures even more (US$−2.13; −16.2%). These policies saved US$4.22 (28%) of antihypertensive drug costs per patient in December 2013 compared to March 2012. Drug price reduction policy was introduced in April 2012. We established the policy effect by comparing it before (March 2012) with after(21 months later-December 2012). The effects of the guidelines decreased expenditures, daily drug utilisation and the average number of drugs per month more than did the drug price reduction. Conclusions Both policies saved money. The guidelines were more effective over time and had fewer side effects such as increasing daily drug utilisation and number of drugs than the effects of drug price reduction. PMID:26179644

  12. The Effect of Children's Rights Training on Primary School Students' Utilisation and Knowledge Level about Children's Rights

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ozmen, Suna Kaymak; Ocal, Tugba; Ozmen, Ahmet

    2014-01-01

    Recently, children's rights issue has taken attention. In this study, main purpose was to investigate the utilisation and knowledge level of 4th and 5th grade primary school students after children's rights training. The participants of this survey study were selected randomly from 10 schools. Results indicated that students had the…

  13. Effect of health insurance on the utilisation of allied health services by people with chronic disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Skinner, Elizabeth H; Foster, Michele; Mitchell, Geoffrey; Haynes, Michele; O'Flaherty, Martin; Haines, Terry P

    2014-01-01

    Allied health services benefit the management of many chronic diseases. The effects of health insurance on the utilisation of allied health services has not yet been established despite health insurance frequently being identified as a factor promoting utilisation of medical and hospital services among people with chronic disease. The objective of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to establish the effects of health insurance on the utilisation of allied health services by people with chronic disease. Medline (Ovid Medline 1948 to Present with Daily Update), EMBASE (1980 to 1 April 2011), CINAHL, PsychINFO and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials were searched to 12 April 2011 inclusive. Studies were eligible for inclusion if they were published in English, randomised controlled trials, quasi-experimental trials, quantitative observational studies and included people with one or more chronic diseases using allied health services and health insurance. A full-text review was performed independently by two reviewers. Meta-analyses were conducted. One hundred and fifty-eight citations were retrieved and seven articles were included in the meta-analyses. The pooled odds ratio (95% CI) of having insurance (versus no insurance) on the utilisation of allied health services among people with chronic disease was 1.33 (1.16-1.52; P<0.001). There was a significant effect of insurance on the utilisation of non-physiotherapy services, pooled odds ratio (95% CI) 4.80 (1.46-15.79; P=0.01) but having insurance compared with insurance of a lesser coverage was not significantly associated with an increase in physiotherapy utilisation, pooled odds ratio (95% CI) 1.53 (0.81-2.91; P=0.19). The presence of co-morbidity or functional limitation and higher levels of education increased utilisation whereas gender, race, marital status and income had a limited and variable effect, according to the study population. The review was limited by the considerable

  14. Effect of health insurance on the utilisation of allied health services by people with chronic disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Skinner, Elizabeth H; Foster, Michele; Mitchell, Geoffrey; Haynes, Michele; O'Flaherty, Martin; Haines, Terry P

    2014-01-01

    Allied health services benefit the management of many chronic diseases. The effects of health insurance on the utilisation of allied health services has not yet been established despite health insurance frequently being identified as a factor promoting utilisation of medical and hospital services among people with chronic disease. The objective of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to establish the effects of health insurance on the utilisation of allied health services by people with chronic disease. Medline (Ovid Medline 1948 to Present with Daily Update), EMBASE (1980 to 1 April 2011), CINAHL, PsychINFO and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials were searched to 12 April 2011 inclusive. Studies were eligible for inclusion if they were published in English, randomised controlled trials, quasi-experimental trials, quantitative observational studies and included people with one or more chronic diseases using allied health services and health insurance. A full-text review was performed independently by two reviewers. Meta-analyses were conducted. One hundred and fifty-eight citations were retrieved and seven articles were included in the meta-analyses. The pooled odds ratio (95% CI) of having insurance (versus no insurance) on the utilisation of allied health services among people with chronic disease was 1.33 (1.16-1.52; P<0.001). There was a significant effect of insurance on the utilisation of non-physiotherapy services, pooled odds ratio (95% CI) 4.80 (1.46-15.79; P=0.01) but having insurance compared with insurance of a lesser coverage was not significantly associated with an increase in physiotherapy utilisation, pooled odds ratio (95% CI) 1.53 (0.81-2.91; P=0.19). The presence of co-morbidity or functional limitation and higher levels of education increased utilisation whereas gender, race, marital status and income had a limited and variable effect, according to the study population. The review was limited by the considerable

  15. Utilisation of sexual health services by female sex workers in Nepal

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The Nepal Demographic Health Survey (NDHS) in 2006 showed that more than half (56%) of the women with sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV, in Nepal sought sexual health services. There is no such data for female sex workers (FSWs) and the limited studies on this group suggest they do not even use routine health services. This study explores FSWs use of sexual health services and the factors associated with their use and non-use of services. Methods This study aimed to explore the factors associated with utilisation of sexual health services by FSWs in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal, and it used a mixed-method approach consisting of an interviewer administered questionnaire-based survey and in-depth interviews. Results The questionnaire survey, completed with 425 FSWs, showed that 90% FSWs self-reported sickness, and (30.8%) reported symptoms of STIs. A quarter (25%) of those reporting STIs had never visited any health facilities especially for sexual health services preferring to use non-governmental clinics (72%), private clinics (50%), hospital (27%) and health centres (13%). Multiple regression analysis showed that separated, married and street- based FSWs were more likely to seek health services from the clinics or hospitals. In- depth interviews with 15 FSWs revealed that FSWs perceived that personal, structural and socio-cultural barriers, such as inappropriate clinic opening hours, discrimination, the judgemental attitude of the service providers, lack of confidentiality, fear of public exposure, and higher fees for the services as barriers to their access and utilisation of sexual health services. Conclusion FSWs have limited access to information and to health services, and operate under personal, structural and socio-cultural constraints. The 'education' to change individual behaviour, health worker and community perceptions, as well as the training of the health workers, is necessary. PMID:21501473

  16. Possibilities for the efficient utilisation of spent geothermal waters.

    PubMed

    Tomaszewska, Barbara; Szczepański, Andrzej

    2014-10-01

    Waters located at greater depths usually exhibit high mineral content, which necessitates the use of closed systems, i.e. re-injecting them into the formation after recovering the heat. This significantly reduces investment efficiency owing to the need to drill absorption wells and to perform anti-corrosion and anti-clogging procedures. In this paper, possibilities for the efficient utilisation of cooled geothermal waters are considered, particularly with respect to open or mixed geothermal water installations. Where cooled water desalination technologies are used, this allows the water to be demineralised and used to meet local needs (as drinking water and for leisure purposes). The retentate left as a by-product of the process contains valuable ingredients that can be used for balneological and/or leisure purposes. Thus, the technology for desalinating spent geothermal waters with high mineral content allows improved water management on a local scale and makes it possible to minimise the environmental threat resulting from the need to dump these waters into waterways or surface water bodies and/or inject them into the formation. The paper is concerned with Polish geothermal system and provides information about the parameters of Polish geothermal waters.

  17. Utilising multimedia for training merchant mariners as paramedics.

    PubMed

    Anogianakis, G; Maglavera, S

    2000-01-01

    MERMAID is a telemedicine project with global reach and a 24-hour, multilingual capability. It aspires to provide a model for the provision of health care services based on the electronic transmission of medical information, via ISDN based videoconferencing. This model is not limited to medical diagnostics but it encompasses all cases where the actual delivery of health care services involves a patient who is not located where the provider is. Its implementation requires the commissioning of an expensive telecommunications infrastructure and the exploration of a number of solutions. In fact, all categories of telemedical applications are considered while the full range of network choices is explored in terms of the cost/performance tradeoffs inherent to them and the developmental stage each of these options occupies in its life cycle. MERMAID utilises advanced land based line transmission technologies to aid the remote patient by making available the specialty care best suited to each particular case. Finally, the development of programme modules for training and education of the seafarers in the use of the MERMAID medical communications system is given top priority as such modules constitute the firmest basis for the promotion of proper practice of telemedicine at sea. PMID:11010337

  18. Possibilities for the efficient utilisation of spent geothermal waters.

    PubMed

    Tomaszewska, Barbara; Szczepański, Andrzej

    2014-10-01

    Waters located at greater depths usually exhibit high mineral content, which necessitates the use of closed systems, i.e. re-injecting them into the formation after recovering the heat. This significantly reduces investment efficiency owing to the need to drill absorption wells and to perform anti-corrosion and anti-clogging procedures. In this paper, possibilities for the efficient utilisation of cooled geothermal waters are considered, particularly with respect to open or mixed geothermal water installations. Where cooled water desalination technologies are used, this allows the water to be demineralised and used to meet local needs (as drinking water and for leisure purposes). The retentate left as a by-product of the process contains valuable ingredients that can be used for balneological and/or leisure purposes. Thus, the technology for desalinating spent geothermal waters with high mineral content allows improved water management on a local scale and makes it possible to minimise the environmental threat resulting from the need to dump these waters into waterways or surface water bodies and/or inject them into the formation. The paper is concerned with Polish geothermal system and provides information about the parameters of Polish geothermal waters. PMID:24903247

  19. How can qualitative research be utilised in the NHS when re-designing and commissioning services?

    PubMed

    Barker, Karen L

    2015-02-01

    Patient experience is acknowledged as a key quality metric of healthcare quality and can be used to identify problems with healthcare delivery, to drive quality improvements and to inform commissioning of services that promote patient choice. In this article, the contribution of qualitative research studies to inform the redesign and patient-focussed commissioning of services is considered, illustrated with particular reference to elective orthopaedic surgical services. To fully embrace the concept of patient and public involvement (PPI) and to embed it in service delivery, health service design and informing commissioners to purchase healthcare that truly meets patient need and expectations, qualitative research has an increasingly important role to play. Through well-conducted qualitative research exploring patients' experiences, their knowledge and experiences of conditions can be utilised for the benefit of others and the impact of the patient voice truly heard when designing and commissioning healthcare services.

  20. Primary care utilisation patterns among an urban immigrant population in the Spanish National Health System

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background There is evidence suggesting that the use of health services is lower among immigrants after adjusting for age and sex. This study takes a step forward to compare primary care (PC) utilisation patterns between immigrants and the native population with regard to their morbidity burden. Methods This retrospective, observational study looked at 69,067 individuals representing the entire population assigned to three urban PC centres in the city of Zaragoza (Aragon, Spain). Poisson models were applied to determine the number of annual PC consultations per individual based on immigration status. All models were first adjusted for age and sex and then for age, sex and case mix (ACG System®). Results The age and sex adjusted mean number of total annual consultations was lower among the immigrant population (children: IRR = 0.79, p < 0.05; adults: IRR = 0.73, p < 0.05). After adjusting for morbidity burden, this difference decreased among children (IRR = 0.94, p < 0.05) and disappeared among adults (IRR = 1.00). Further analysis considering the PC health service and type of visit revealed higher usage of routine diagnostic tests among immigrant children (IRR = 1.77, p < 0.05) and a higher usage of emergency services among the immigrant adult population (IRR = 1.2, p < 0.05) after adjusting for age, sex and case mix. Conclusions Although immigrants make lower use of PC services than the native population after adjusting the consultation rate for age and sex, these differences decrease significantly when considering their morbidity burden. These results reinforce the 'healthy migration effect' and discount the existence of differences in PC utilisation patterns between the immigrant and native populations in Spain. PMID:21645335

  1. Impact of caprock permeability on vertical ground surface displacements in geological underground utilisation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kempka, Thomas; Tillner, Elena

    2015-04-01

    Geological underground utilisation inducing pore pressure changes in underground reservoirs is generally accompanied by hydro-mechanical processes. Thereby, pore pressure increase due to fluid injection may trigger ground surface uplift, while a decrease in pore pressure due to reservoir fluid production is known to induce ground subsidence. Different coupled hydro-mechanical simulation studies (e.g. Klimkowski et al., 2015, Kempka et al., 2014, Tillner et al., 2014) indicate that ground surface displacements can achieve a magnitude of several decimetres, if storage or production operations are being carried out at an industrial scale. Consequently, detailed knowledge on the parameters impacting ground surface uplift or subsidence is of major interest for the success of any geological underground utilisation in order to avoid surface infrastructure damage by spatially varying deformations. Furthermore, ground subsidence may result increased groundwater levels as experienced in different underground coal mining districts. In the present study, we carried out coupled hydro-mechanical simulations to account for the impact of caprock permeability on ground surface displacements resulting from geological underground utilisation. Thereto, different simulation scenarios were investigated using a synthetic 3D coupled numerical simulation model with varying caprock permeability and vertical location of the open well section in the target reservoir. Material property ranges were derived from available literature, while a normal faulting stress state was applied in all simulation scenarios. Our simulation results demonstrate that caprock permeability has a significant impact on the pressure development, and thus on vertical displacements at the ground surface as well as at the reservoir top. An increase in caprock permeability from 1 x 10-20 m2 by two orders of magnitude doubles vertical displacements at the ground surface, whereas vertical displacements at the reservoir top

  2. Utilisation of Pangolin (Manis sps) in traditional Yorubic medicine in Ijebu province, Ogun State, Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Concern about the use of endangered and threatened species in traditional medicine escalated as populations of many species plummeted because of poaching for the medicinal trade. Nigeria is known for a long and valued tradition of using wild animals and plants for medicinal purposes. Despite this, studies on medicinal animals are still scarce when compared to those focusing on medicinal plants. Utilisation of wild animals in traditional Yorubic medical practices was indiscriminate as it involved threatened species. By touting the medicinal properties of these species, traditional medicine fuel continuing demand, thereby subjecting such species to further threats. This paper examined the use and commercialisation of pangolins for traditional medicinal purposes amongst the Ijebus, South-western Nigeria, and the implications of this utilisation for the conservation of this species. Methods Traditional Yorubic medical practitioners (tymps) (16) and dealers in traditional medicinal ingredients (56) in public markets in Ijebu province, Nigeria, were interviewed using open-ended questionnaires. The dynamic stock movement of pangolins in the stalls of dealers was also monitored to determine quantity of pangolins sold into the traditional Yorubic medicinal practices. Specific conditions treated and the parts required were also documented. Results A total of 178 whole pangolin carcasses were sold into traditional medical practices. Above 55% of respondents had just primary education, over 90% of respondents were not aware of either the conservation status of this species or the existence of any legal machinery regulating its trade and utilisation, while 14% admitted to giving contracts to hunters for deliberate search for this animal when needed. More than 98% of respondents have no other means of livelihood. The trade was female dominated while the healing practice had more males. Pangolins were used in various preparations to treat a total of 42 conditions

  3. Health care utilisation amongst Shenzhen migrant workers: does being insured make a difference?

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background As one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the Pearl River Delta of South China, Shenzhen attracts millions of migrant workers annually. The objectives of this study were to compare health needs, self-reported health and healthcare utilisation of insured and uninsured migrant workers in Shenzhen, China, where a new health insurance scheme targeting at migrant workers was initiated. Methods A cross-sectional survey using multi-staged sampling was conducted to collect data from migrant factory workers. Statistical tests included logistic regression analysis were used. Results Among 4634 subjects (96.54%) who responded to the survey, 55.11% were uninsured. Disease patterns were similar irrespective of insurance status. The uninsured were more likely to be female, single, younger and less educated unskilled labourers with a lower monthly income compared with the insured. Out of 1136 who reported illness in the previous two weeks, 62.15% did not visit a doctor. Of the 296 who were referred for inpatient care, 48.65% did not attend because of inability to pay. Amongst those who reported sickness, 548 were insured and 588 were uninsured. Those that were insured, and had easier access to care were more likely to make doctor visits than those who were uninsured. Conclusion Health care utilisation patterns differ between insured and uninsured workers and insurance status appears to be a significant factor. The health insurance system is inequitably distributed amongst migrant workers. Younger less educated women who are paid less are more likely to be uninsured and therefore to pay out of pocket for their care. For greater equity this group need to be included in the insurance schemes as they develop. PMID:19930580

  4. Multiple sclerosis disease modifying medicine utilisation in Australia.

    PubMed

    Hollingworth, Samantha; Walker, Kimitra; Page, Andrew; Eadie, Mervyn

    2014-12-01

    With the introduction of new disease modifying medicines (DMM) for relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) in Australia, we aimed to examine trends in utilisation from 1996 to 2013. We analysed trends in use by administrative area (state/territory). Prescription data from Medicare Australia were converted to defined daily doses (DDD)/1000 population/day using population data. Overall RRMS DMM use increased progressively from 0.024 to 0.68 DDD/1000 population/day between 1996 and 2013. From 1996 to 1999 interferon β1B was the only such agent available. Interferon β1A became the most widely used RRMS DMM in 2001. Glatiramer acetate became available in 2004 and its use thereafter increased slowly. Natalizumab was introduced in 2008 with slow growth and fingolimod use grew substantially once it was subsidised in 2011. Both these medicines have accounted for the growth in total use of RRMS DMM in 2012 and 2013. Overall RRMS DMM use was higher in more southern states than in northern states. Patterns of preferred agent varied between different Australian states and territories. RRMS DMM use in Australia has grown progressively since 1996, probably related to growing medical and patient confidence in the benefits obtained from using such drugs, longer survival in MS patients (partly related to use of drug treatments), and easier recognition of MS with the wider availability of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The availability of fingolimod, the first DMM that can be taken by mouth, may have led RRMS patients who rejected parenteral therapy to commence treatment of their disease.

  5. Heterotrophic utilisation of biochemical compounds in Antarctic waters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bölter, M.; Dawson, R.

    The heterotrophic utilisation of amino acids and carbohydrates (mono- and disaccharides) was investigated November-December 1980 on water samples taken from the Falkland Islands to the ice-edge of the Weddell Sea and Bransfield Strait. The uptake of 14C-labelled compounds and their respiration was measured with consideration of the natural concentration of the substrates which were measured directly by high performance liquid chromatography with fluoresencent detection. All incubations were carried out at in situ temperatures with trace amounts of labelled compounds without kinetic approach. The results show wide variations in microbial activity and actual substrate concentration which may be related to the physiological state and biomass of phytoplankton standing stock, dominated by Phaeocystis sp. and Thalassiosira sp. Microbial activities and biomass production were found to be comparable with others areas, e.g. the Baltic Sea. The composition of the dissolved and particulate matter in terms of amino acids, proteins, sugars and polysaccharides show many differences to other ecosystems. High levels of bound amino acids (dissolved proteins) often exceeding mg levels were found, particularly in waters with high chlorophyll contents (up to 30 μg·1 -1) where the plankton populations' physiological state was poor. Analysis of filtered particulate matter after water extraction and exhaustive hydrolysis showed that healthy plankton cells produced large quantities of high energy nitrogen compounds centred around glutamine and its degradation products. These products could be found in the free-pool of amino acids, only traces following the breakdown of planktonic organisms. A storage of proteinaceous matter seems to be characteristics feature of the Antarctic ecosystem.

  6. Multiple sclerosis disease modifying medicine utilisation in Australia.

    PubMed

    Hollingworth, Samantha; Walker, Kimitra; Page, Andrew; Eadie, Mervyn

    2014-12-01

    With the introduction of new disease modifying medicines (DMM) for relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) in Australia, we aimed to examine trends in utilisation from 1996 to 2013. We analysed trends in use by administrative area (state/territory). Prescription data from Medicare Australia were converted to defined daily doses (DDD)/1000 population/day using population data. Overall RRMS DMM use increased progressively from 0.024 to 0.68 DDD/1000 population/day between 1996 and 2013. From 1996 to 1999 interferon β1B was the only such agent available. Interferon β1A became the most widely used RRMS DMM in 2001. Glatiramer acetate became available in 2004 and its use thereafter increased slowly. Natalizumab was introduced in 2008 with slow growth and fingolimod use grew substantially once it was subsidised in 2011. Both these medicines have accounted for the growth in total use of RRMS DMM in 2012 and 2013. Overall RRMS DMM use was higher in more southern states than in northern states. Patterns of preferred agent varied between different Australian states and territories. RRMS DMM use in Australia has grown progressively since 1996, probably related to growing medical and patient confidence in the benefits obtained from using such drugs, longer survival in MS patients (partly related to use of drug treatments), and easier recognition of MS with the wider availability of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The availability of fingolimod, the first DMM that can be taken by mouth, may have led RRMS patients who rejected parenteral therapy to commence treatment of their disease. PMID:25194821

  7. Comparison of a spatial approach with the multilevel approach for investigating place effects on health: the example of healthcare utilisation in France

    PubMed Central

    Chaix, B.; Merlo, J.; Chauvin, P.

    2005-01-01

    Study objective: Most studies of place effects on health have followed the multilevel analytical approach that investigates geographical variations of health phenomena by fragmenting space into arbitrary areas. This study examined whether analysing geographical variations across continuous space with spatial modelling techniques and contextual indicators that capture space as a continuous dimension surrounding individual residences provided more relevant information on the spatial distribution of outcomes. Healthcare utilisation in France was taken as an illustrative example in comparing the spatial approach with the multilevel approach. Design: Multilevel and spatial analyses of cross sectional data. Participants: 10 955 beneficiaries of the three principal national health insurance funds, surveyed in 1998 and 2000 on continental France. Main results: Multilevel models showed significant geographical variations in healthcare utilisation. However, the Moran's I statistic showed spatial autocorrelation unaccounted for by multilevel models. Modelling the correlation between people as a decreasing function of the spatial distance between them, spatial mixed models gave information not only on the magnitude, but also on the scale of spatial variations, and provided more accurate standard errors for risk factors effects. The socioeconomic level of the residential context and the supply of physicians were independently associated with healthcare utilisation. Place indicators better explained spatial variations in healthcare utilisation when measured across continuous space, rather than within administrative areas. Conclusions: The kind of conceptualisation of space during analysis influences the understanding of place effects on health. In many contextual studies, viewing space as a continuum may yield more relevant information on the spatial distribution of outcomes. PMID:15911650

  8. Articulating Injustice: An Exploration of Young People's Experiences of Participation in a Conflict Transformation Programme That Utilises the Arts as a Form of Dialogue

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Knight, Heather

    2014-01-01

    This paper reflects on a study that explores young people's engagement with the Art: a Resource for Reconciliation Over the World (ARROW) programme. The programme utilises the arts to promote critical dialogue amongst young people growing up in divided communities around the world. Dialogue has been criticised for its inability to tackle…

  9. Utilisation of acute hospitals by age and sex in Australia, 1985.

    PubMed

    Mathers, C D; Moore, G

    1989-01-01

    This paper provides estimates of the utilisation rates of acute care (short-stay) hospitals, by age and sex, for the Australian population. Separation and bed-day rates per 1000 persons for public, Repatriation and private hospitals in 1985 have been estimated by age group, for each sex, in each State and Territory in Australia. The Australian Base Grant, negotiated between the Commonwealth, States and Territories in the new Medicare Agreements, distributes funds for the care and treatment of Medicare patients in public hospitals. The national bed-day utilisation rates reported in this article, have been used as the basis for population weights to allocate these funds. This paper presents the data and methods used to derive these weights, and examines the differences between them and the actual State and Territory utilisation patterns in 1985. The impact of population ageing on the overall utilisation rates for acute hospitals in Australia is examined.

  10. Impact of technology on the utilisation of positron emission tomography in lymphoma: current and future perspectives.

    PubMed

    Visvikis, D; Ell, P J

    2003-06-01

    Positron emission tomography (PET) has now gained a place in the management of patients with cancer, including those with Hodgkin's disease and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Restaging studies and those addressing the monitoring of response to treatment are especially in focus. Most of the knowledge gained has been achieved with dedicated BGO-based PET technology, but there are a number of developments that will impact on the use of this metabolic imaging technique in the investigation of patients with lymphoma. The challenges ahead are determined by the need for high-quality whole-body imaging associated with increased patient throughput and the need to investigate the role of new labelled ligands. The latter are likely to yield new insights into tumour cell characterisation, tumour behaviour and tumour outcome assessment. The study of new radiolabelled ligands will impose further demands for rapid dynamic data acquisition and accurate tracer quantification. Current and future developments in PET technology range from the use of new detector materials to different detector geometries and data acquisition modes. The search for alternatives to BGO scintillation materials for PET has led to the development of PET instruments utilising new crystals such as LSO and GSO. The use of these new detectors and the increased sensitivity achieved with 3D data acquisitions represent the most significant current developments in the field. With the increasing demands imposed on the clinical utilisation of PET, issues such as study cost and patient throughput will emerge as significant future factors. As a consequence, low-cost units are being offered by the manufacturers through the utilisation of gamma camera-based SPET systems for PET coincidence imaging. Unfortunately, clinical studies in lymphoma and other cancers have already demonstrated the limitations of this technology, with 20% of lesions <15 mm in size escaping detection. On the other hand, the recent development of combined

  11. Out-of-Pocket Payments, Health Care Access and Utilisation in South-Eastern Nigeria: A Gender Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Onah, Michael N.; Govender, Veloshnee

    2014-01-01

    Out-of-pocket (OOP) payments have severe consequences for health care access and utilisation and are especially catastrophic for the poor. Although women comprise the majority of the poor in Nigeria and globally, the implications of OOP payments for health care access from a gender perspective have received little attention. This study seeks to fill this gap by using a combination of quantitative and qualitative analysis to investigate the gendered impact of OOPs on healthcare utilisation in south-eastern Nigeria. 411 households were surveyed and six single-sex Focus Group Discussions conducted. This study confirmed the socioeconomic and demographic vulnerability of female-headed households (FHHs), which contributed to gender-based inter-household differences in healthcare access, cost burden, choices of healthcare providers, methods of funding healthcare and coping strategies. FHHs had higher cost burdens from seeking care and untreated morbidity than male-headed households (MHHs) with affordability as a reason for not seeking care. There is also a high utilisation of patent medicine vendors (PMVs) by both households (PMVs are drug vendors that are unregulated, likely to offer very low-quality treatment and do not have trained personnel). OOP payment was predominantly the means of healthcare payment for both households, and households spoke of the difficulties associated with repaying health-related debt with implications for the medical poverty trap. It is recommended that the removal of user fees, introduction of prepayment schemes, and regulating PMVs be considered to improve access and provide protection against debt for FHHs and MHHs. The vulnerability of widows is of special concern and efforts to improve their healthcare access and broader efforts to empower should be encouraged for them and other poor households. PMID:24728103

  12. High-throughput genotyping of hop (Humulus lupulus L.) utilising diversity arrays technology (DArT).

    PubMed

    Howard, E L; Whittock, S P; Jakše, J; Carling, J; Matthews, P D; Probasco, G; Henning, J A; Darby, P; Cerenak, A; Javornik, B; Kilian, A; Koutoulis, A

    2011-05-01

    Implementation of molecular methods in hop (Humulus lupulus L.) breeding is dependent on the availability of sizeable numbers of polymorphic markers and a comprehensive understanding of genetic variation. However, use of molecular marker technology is limited due to expense, time inefficiency, laborious methodology and dependence on DNA sequence information. Diversity arrays technology (DArT) is a high-throughput cost-effective method for the discovery of large numbers of quality polymorphic markers without reliance on DNA sequence information. This study is the first to utilise DArT for hop genotyping, identifying 730 polymorphic markers from 92 hop accessions. The marker quality was high and similar to the quality of DArT markers previously generated for other species; although percentage polymorphism and polymorphism information content (PIC) were lower than in previous studies deploying other marker systems in hop. Genetic relationships in hop illustrated by DArT in this study coincide with knowledge generated using alternate methods. Several statistical analyses separated the hop accessions into genetically differentiated North American and European groupings, with hybrids between the two groups clearly distinguishable. Levels of genetic diversity were similar in the North American and European groups, but higher in the hybrid group. The markers produced from this time and cost-efficient genotyping tool will be a valuable resource for numerous applications in hop breeding and genetics studies, such as mapping, marker-assisted selection, genetic identity testing, guidance in the maintenance of genetic diversity and the directed breeding of superior cultivars. PMID:21243330

  13. Health Care Utilisation and Transitions between Health Care Settings in the Last 6 Months of Life in Switzerland

    PubMed Central

    Bähler, Caroline; Signorell, Andri; Reich, Oliver

    2016-01-01

    Background Many efforts are undertaken in Switzerland to enable older and/or chronically ill patients to stay home longer at the end-of-life. One of the consequences might be an increased need for hospitalisations at the end-of-life, which goes along with burdensome transitions for patients and higher health care costs for the society. Aim We aimed to examine the health care utilisation in the last six months of life, including transitions between health care settings, in a Swiss adult population. Methods The study population consisted of 11'310 decedents of 2014 who were insured at the Helsana Group, the leading health insurance in Switzerland. Descriptive statistics were used to analyse the health care utilisation by age group, taking into account individual and regional factors. Zero-inflated Poisson regression model was used to predict the number of transitions. Results Mean age was 78.1 in men and 83.8 in women. In the last six months of life, 94.7% of the decedents had at least one consultation; 61.6% were hospitalised at least once, with a mean length of stay of 28.3 days; and nursing home stays were seen in 47.4% of the decedents. Over the same time period, 64.5% were transferred at least once, and 12.9% experienced at least one burdensome transition. Main predictors for transitions were age, sex and chronic conditions. A high density of home care nurses was associated with a decrease, whereas a high density of ambulatory care physicians was associated with an increase in the number of transitions. Conclusions Health care utilisation was high in the last six months of life and a considerable number of decedents were being transferred. Advance care planning might prevent patients from numerous and particularly from burdensome transitions. PMID:27598939

  14. Effects of feeding raw or reconstituted high tannin red sorghum on nutrient utilisation and certain welfare parameters of broiler chickens.

    PubMed

    Kumar, V; Elangovan, A V; Mandal, A B; Tyagi, P K; Bhanja, S K; Dash, B B

    2007-04-01

    1. A feeding trial was conducted on 360 1-d-old chicks from 0 to 6 weeks of age to assess the effect of processed high tannin red sorghum in the diet of broiler chickens on nutrient utilisation and certain welfare parameters. 2. Each of 9 dietary treatments was allotted to 4 groups (replicates) of chicks in a completely randomised design. The treatments were a maize-soy based standard broiler diet (control, RS(0)) and eight test diets formulated by incorporating either raw red sorghum (RS(25), RS(50), RS(75), RS(100)) or reconstituted red sorghum (RS(25)(R), RS(50)(R), RS(75)(R), RS(100)(R)) replacing 25, 50, 75 or 100% of maize from the control diet. 3. The tannin content was reduced from 23 to 16 g/kg in reconstituted red sorghum. 4. Utilisations of nitrogen, calcium and phosphorus retention were similar in all the dietary groups. 5. The cell-mediated immune response measured as footpad index (FPI) value of birds given raw red sorghum was significantly higher than in control and reconstituted red sorghum groups. Similarly, comparatively better humoral response measured as HA titre value was observed in raw red sorghum based groups than in reconstituted ones. 6. Plasma albumin, globulin, protein, glucose, calcium, phosphorus, SGOT, SGPT and uric acid levels did not differ significantly due to dietary treatments. 7. Mild histopathological changes were observed in liver and kidney tissues of birds given raw red sorghum. 8. From the present study, it is concluded that (1) the reconstitution of high tannin red sorghum resulted in about 30% reduction in its tannin concentration; (2) the feeding of reconstituted sorghum based diets to broiler chickens did not exert any appreciable influence on nutrient utilisation, blood biochemicals and enzymes and gross pathological changes; and (3) the birds fed on raw red sorghum exhibited higher immuno-responsiveness in comparison to their reconstituted counterparts.

  15. Analysis of the Diversity of Substrate Utilisation of Soil Bacteria Exposed to Cd and Earthworm Activity Using Generalised Additive Models

    PubMed Central

    Muñiz, Selene; Lacarta, Juan; Pata, María P.; Jiménez, Juan José; Navarro, Enrique

    2014-01-01

    Biolog EcoPlates™ can be used to measure the carbon substrate utilisation patterns of microbial communities. This method results in a community-level physiological profile (CLPP), which yields a very large amount of data that may be difficult to interpret. In this work, we explore a combination of statistical techniques (particularly the use of generalised additive models [GAMs]) to improve the exploitation of CLPP data. The strength of GAMs lies in their ability to address highly non-linear relationships between the response and the set of explanatory variables. We studied the impact of earthworms (Aporrectodea caliginosa Savigny 1826) and cadmium (Cd) on the CLPP of soil bacteria. The results indicated that both Cd and earthworms modified the CLPP. GAMs were used to assess time-course changes in the diversity of substrate utilisation (DSU) using the Shannon-Wiener index. GAMs revealed significant differences for all treatments (compared to control -S-). The Cd exposed microbial community presented very high metabolic capacities on a few substrata, resulting in an initial acute decrease of DSU (i.e. intense utilization of a few carbon substrata). After 54 h, and over the next 43 h the increase of the DSU suggest that other taxa, less dominant, reached high numbers in the wells containing sources that are less suitable for the Cd-tolerant taxa. Earthworms were a much more determining factor in explaining time course changes in DSU than Cd. Accordingly, Ew and EwCd soils presented similar trends, regardless the presence of Cd. Moreover, both treatments presented similar number of bacteria and higher than Cd-treated soils. This experimental approach, based on the use of DSU and GAMs allowed for a global and statistically relevant interpretation of the changes in carbon source utilisation, highlighting the key role of earthworms on the protection of microbial communities against the Cd. PMID:24416339

  16. Multimorbidity and healthcare utilisation among high-cost patients in the US Veterans Affairs Health Care System

    PubMed Central

    Zulman, Donna M; Pal Chee, Christine; Wagner, Todd H; Yoon, Jean; Cohen, Danielle M; Holmes, Tyson H; Ritchie, Christine; Asch, Steven M

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To investigate the relationship between multimorbidity and healthcare utilisation patterns among the highest cost patients in a large, integrated healthcare system. Design In this retrospective cross-sectional study of all patients in the U.S. Veterans Affairs (VA) Health Care System, we aggregated costs of individuals’ outpatient and inpatient care, pharmacy services and VA-sponsored contract care received in 2010. We assessed chronic condition prevalence, multimorbidity as measured by comorbidity count, and multisystem multimorbidity (number of body systems affected by chronic conditions) among the 5% highest cost patients. Using multivariate regression, we examined the association between multimorbidity and healthcare utilisation and costs, adjusting for age, sex, race/ethnicity, marital status, homelessness and health insurance status. Setting USA VA Health Care System. Participants 5.2 million VA patients. Measures Annual total costs; absolute and share of costs generated through outpatient, inpatient, pharmacy and VA-sponsored contract care; number of visits to primary, specialty and mental healthcare; number of emergency department visits and hospitalisations. Results The 5% highest cost patients (n=261 699) accounted for 47% of total VA costs. Approximately two-thirds of these patients had chronic conditions affecting ≥3 body systems. Patients with cancer and schizophrenia were less likely to have documented comorbid conditions than other high-cost patients. Multimorbidity was generally associated with greater outpatient and inpatient utilisation. However, increased multisystem multimorbidity was associated with a higher outpatient share of total costs (1.6 percentage points per affected body system, p<0.01) but a lower inpatient share of total costs (−0.6 percentage points per affected body system, p<0.01). Conclusions Multisystem multimorbidity is common among high-cost VA patients. While some patients might benefit from disease

  17. Utilisation of helicopter emergency medical services in the early medical response to major incidents: a systematic literature review

    PubMed Central

    Johnsen, Anne Siri; Fattah, Sabina; Sollid, Stephen J M; Rehn, Marius

    2016-01-01

    Objective This systematic review identifies, describes and appraises the literature describing the utilisation of helicopter emergency medical services (HEMS) in the early medical response to major incidents. Setting Early prehospital phase of a major incident. Design Systematic literature review performed according to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. MEDLINE, EMBASE, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, the Web of Science, PsycINFO, Scopus, Cinahl, Bibsys Ask, Norart, Svemed and UpToDate were searched using phrases that combined HEMS and ‘major incidents’ to identify when and how HEMS was utilised. The identified studies were subjected to data extraction and appraisal. Results The database search identified 4948 articles. Based on the title and abstract, the full text of 96 articles was obtained; of these, 37 articles were included in the review, and an additional five were identified by searching the reference lists of the 37 articles. HEMS was used to transport medical and rescue personnel to the incident and to transport patients to the hospital, especially when the infrastructure was damaged. Insufficient air traffic control, weather conditions, inadequate landing sites and failing communication were described as challenging in some incidents. Conclusions HEMS was used mainly for patient treatment and to transport patients, personnel and equipment in the early medical management of major incidents, but the optimal utilisation of this specialised resource remains unclear. This review identified operational areas with improvement potential. A lack of systematic indexing, heterogeneous data reporting and weak methodological design, complicated the identification and comparison of incidents, and more systematic reporting is needed. Trial registration number CRD42013004473. PMID:26861938

  18. Space resource utilisation: a novel indicator to quantify species competitive ability for light

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Pengfei; Zhou, Xiaolong; Li, Junyong; Guo, Zhi; Du, Guozhen

    2015-01-01

    Species richness and productivity are two fundamental aspects of ecosystems. As a result, the relationship between species richness and productivity has been widely studied. A series of fertilisation experiments in an alpine meadow on the Tibetan Plateau were performed to study the relationship between species richness and productivity. In this paper, we present a novel indicator, i.e., space resource utilisation (SRU), which is calculated by a volume formula (Vi  =  hi · Si; hi = plant height of species i, Si = quadrat area × percent cover of species i). SRU more fully reflected species competitive ability for light in both horizontal and vertical dimensions compared with plant height and cover. We used this novel indicator to investigate the effects of SRU on the changes in species richness and productivity following fertilisation. We found that the SRU of the community was correlated with increasing productivity and decreasing species richness following fertilisation and was a better predictor of species richness than productivity. The changes in SRU following fertilisation vary among species. These results demonstrate that SRU can be a more useful tool in explaining plant biodiversity loss and predicting the fate of different species than each of height, cover and productivity. PMID:26593068

  19. Utilisation of biomass gasification by-products for onsite energy production.

    PubMed

    Vakalis, S; Sotiropoulos, A; Moustakas, K; Malamis, D; Baratieri, M

    2016-06-01

    Small scale biomass gasification is a sector with growth and increasing applications owing to the environmental goals of the European Union and the incentivised policies of most European countries. This study addresses two aspects, which are at the centre of attention concerning the operation and development of small scale gasifiers; reuse of waste and increase of energy efficiency. Several authors have denoted that the low electrical efficiency of these systems is the main barrier for further commercial development. In addition, gasification has several by-products that have no further use and are discarded as waste. In the framework of this manuscript, a secondary reactor is introduced and modelled. The main operating principle is the utilisation of char and flue gases for further energy production. These by-products are reformed into secondary producer gas by means of a secondary reactor. In addition, a set of heat exchangers capture the waste heat and optimise the process. This case study is modelled in a MATLAB-Cantera environment. The model is non-stoichiometric and applies the Gibbs minimisation principle. The simulations show that some of the thermal energy is depleted during the process owing to the preheating of flue gases. Nonetheless, the addition of a secondary reactor results in an increase of the electrical power production efficiency and the combined heat and power (CHP) efficiency. PMID:27118736

  20. Space resource utilisation: a novel indicator to quantify species competitive ability for light.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Pengfei; Zhou, Xiaolong; Li, Junyong; Guo, Zhi; Du, Guozhen

    2015-11-23

    Species richness and productivity are two fundamental aspects of ecosystems. As a result, the relationship between species richness and productivity has been widely studied. A series of fertilisation experiments in an alpine meadow on the Tibetan Plateau were performed to study the relationship between species richness and productivity. In this paper, we present a novel indicator, i.e., space resource utilisation (SRU), which is calculated by a volume formula (V(i)  =  h(i) · S(i); h(i) = plant height of species i, S(i) = quadrat area × percent cover of species i). SRU more fully reflected species competitive ability for light in both horizontal and vertical dimensions compared with plant height and cover. We used this novel indicator to investigate the effects of SRU on the changes in species richness and productivity following fertilisation. We found that the SRU of the community was correlated with increasing productivity and decreasing species richness following fertilisation and was a better predictor of species richness than productivity. The changes in SRU following fertilisation vary among species. These results demonstrate that SRU can be a more useful tool in explaining plant biodiversity loss and predicting the fate of different species than each of height, cover and productivity.

  1. Utilisation of biomass gasification by-products for onsite energy production.

    PubMed

    Vakalis, S; Sotiropoulos, A; Moustakas, K; Malamis, D; Baratieri, M

    2016-06-01

    Small scale biomass gasification is a sector with growth and increasing applications owing to the environmental goals of the European Union and the incentivised policies of most European countries. This study addresses two aspects, which are at the centre of attention concerning the operation and development of small scale gasifiers; reuse of waste and increase of energy efficiency. Several authors have denoted that the low electrical efficiency of these systems is the main barrier for further commercial development. In addition, gasification has several by-products that have no further use and are discarded as waste. In the framework of this manuscript, a secondary reactor is introduced and modelled. The main operating principle is the utilisation of char and flue gases for further energy production. These by-products are reformed into secondary producer gas by means of a secondary reactor. In addition, a set of heat exchangers capture the waste heat and optimise the process. This case study is modelled in a MATLAB-Cantera environment. The model is non-stoichiometric and applies the Gibbs minimisation principle. The simulations show that some of the thermal energy is depleted during the process owing to the preheating of flue gases. Nonetheless, the addition of a secondary reactor results in an increase of the electrical power production efficiency and the combined heat and power (CHP) efficiency.

  2. Comparisons of pastoralists perceptions about rangeland resource utilisation in the Middle Awash Valley of Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Abule, E; Snyman, H A; Smit, G N

    2005-04-01

    Pastoralism is the most dominant land use form in the arid rangelands of Sub-Saharan Africa, but this rangeland-based lifestyle is under threat. As a consequence a study was conducted in the Middle Awash Valley of Ethiopia with the main objectives of assessing and comparing the broad perceptions of two pastoral groups (the Oromo ethnic group living in Kereyu-Fantale and the Afar ethnic group living in Awash-Fantale) on the usage of the existing rangeland resources, and their views on constraints and possible solutions. Data were collected from 90 Oromo and 55 Afar households. Despite the difference in ethnicity both of these groups share common problems. They derive their main income from the sale of animals and animal products, but with the difference that milk products rank first in the case of the Afar and last in the case of the Oromo. Both pastoral groups depend heavily on native grasses for animal feed and to a lesser extent on woody plants as a source of browse. The majority of respondents were of the opinion that the condition of the rangelands is poor, mainly due to overgrazing, droughts and increases in the human population. Availability of water is also regarded as a problem, mainly by the Oromo. Migration is the first measure taken to solve shortages of livestock feed, but many of the pastoralists replied that migration is an undesirable practise which is mostly done out of necessity. Because of the limited resources most respondents of both groups still prefer communal land tenure where resources are shared. It is concluded that the problems facing the pastoralists in the Middle Awash Valley have been created over many years and the solutions will also require time. With the current approach of the communal grazing systems, sustainable utilisation of the rangeland ecosystem is not possible. Solutions to the poor condition of the existing rangelands will require a definite commitment and full participation not only of the pastoralists, but also of

  3. Influence of phenolic substrates utilised by yeast Trichosporon cutaneum on the degradation kinetics

    PubMed Central

    Gerginova, Maria; Zlateva, Plamena; Peneva, Nadejda; Alexieva, Zlatka

    2014-01-01

    The degradation kinetics of different phenolic substrates utilised by Trichosporon cutaneum R57 was studied. The following compounds were used as substrates: phenol, resorcinol, hydroquinone, 3-nitrophenol, 2,6-dinitrophenol, 3-chloro phenol and p-cresol. The specific degradation rates (Qs) were described by a Haldane kinetic model. The unknown model parameters were estimated using the mathematical optimisation procedure for direct search. The results obtained demonstrated that Qs varied greatly in the experiments carried out. The level of biodegradability depended on the different structure and toxicity of compounds used as carbon substrates. The highest Qs values were observed for less toxic hydroxylated phenols (0.77–0.85 h−1), while the most toxic chlorinated phenols were characterised with the lowest Qs values (0.224 h−1). The results obtained with different concentrations of resorcinol (from 0.2 to 0.8 g L−1) and 2,6-dinitrophenol (from 0.2 to 0.7 g L−1) demonstrated a growing inhibitory effect directly correlating with the extended time necessary for complete degradation of both compounds. PMID:26692781

  4. Utilisation of single added fatty acids by consortia of digester sludge in batch culture

    SciTech Connect

    Wagner, Andreas Otto; Gstrauntaler, Gudrun; Illmer, Paul

    2010-10-15

    Inocula derived from an anaerobic digester were used to study (i) their potential for methane production and (ii) the utilisation rates of different short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) by the microbial community in defined media with mono-carbon sources (formic-, acetetic-, propionic-, butyric acid) in batch culture. It could be demonstrated that the microbial reactor population could be transferred successfully to the lab, and its ability to build up methane was present even with deteriorating biogas plant performance. Therefore, this reduction in performance of the biogas plant was not due to a decrease in abundance, but due to an inactivity of the microbial community. Generally, the physico-chemical properties of the biogas plant seemed to favour hydrogenotrophic methanogens, as seen by the high metabolisation rates of formate compared with all other carbon sources. In contrast, acetoclastic methanogenesis could be shown to play a minor role in the methane production of the investigated biogas plant, although the origin of up to 66% of methane is generally suggested to be generated through acetoclastic pathway.

  5. Measurement of labile copper in wine by medium exchange stripping potentiometry utilising screen printed carbon electrodes.

    PubMed

    Clark, Andrew C; Kontoudakis, Nikolaos; Barril, Celia; Schmidtke, Leigh M; Scollary, Geoffrey R

    2016-07-01

    The presence of copper in wine is known to impact the reductive, oxidative and colloidal stability of wine, and techniques enabling measurement of different forms of copper in wine are of particular interest in understanding these spoilage processes. Electrochemical stripping techniques developed to date require significant pretreatment of wine, potentially disturbing the copper binding equilibria. A thin mercury film on a screen printed carbon electrode was utilised in a flow system for the direct analysis of labile copper in red and white wine by constant current stripping potentiometry with medium exchange. Under the optimised conditions, including an enrichment time of 500s and constant current of 1.0μA, the response range was linear from 0.015 to 0.200mg/L. The analysis of 52 red and white wines showed that this technique generally provided lower labile copper concentrations than reported for batch measurement by related techniques. Studies in a model system and in finished wines showed that the copper sulfide was not measured as labile copper, and that loss of hydrogen sulfide via volatilisation induced an increase in labile copper within the model wine system.

  6. Relationship between Health Insurance Status and the Pattern of Traditional Medicine Utilisation in Ghana.

    PubMed

    Gyasi, Razak Mohammed

    2015-01-01

    This paper examines the relationship between national health insurance status and the pattern of traditional medicine (TRM) use among the general population in Ghana. A retrospective cross-sectional survey of randomly sampled adults, aged ≥18 years (N = 324), was conducted. The results indicate that TRM use was high with prevalence of over 86%. The study found no statistically significant association between national health insurance status and TRM utilisation (P > 0.05). Paradoxically, major sources of TRM, frequency of TRM use, comedical administration, and disclosure of TRM use to health care professionals differed significantly between the insured and uninsured subgroups (P < 0.001). Whereas effectiveness of TRM predicted its use for both insured [odds ratio (OR) = 4.374 (confidence interval (CI): 1.753-10.913; P = 0.002)] and uninsured [OR = 3.383 CI: 0.869-13.170; P = 0.039)], work experience predicted TRM use for the insured [OR = 1.528 (95% CI: 1.309-1.900; P = 0.019)]. Cultural specific variables and health philosophies rather than health insurance status may influence health care-seeking behaviour and TRM use. The enrollment of herbal-based therapies on the national health insurance medicine plan is exigent to ensure monitoring and rational use of TRM towards intercultural health care system in Ghana. PMID:26347791

  7. Carbon dioxide utilisation of Dunaliella tertiolecta for carbon bio-mitigation in a semicontinuous photobioreactor.

    PubMed

    Farrelly, Damien J; Brennan, Liam; Everard, Colm D; McDonnell, Kevin P

    2014-04-01

    Bio-fixation of carbon dioxide (CO2) by microalgae has been recognised as an attractive approach to offset anthropogenic emissions. Biological carbon mitigation is the process whereby autotrophic organisms, such as microalgae, convert CO2 into organic carbon and O2 through photosynthesis; this process through respiration produces biomass. In this study Dunaliella tertiolecta was cultivated in a semicontinuous culture to investigate the carbon mitigation rate of the system. The algae were produced in 1.2-L Roux bottles with a working volume of 1 L while semicontinuous production commenced on day 4 of cultivation when the carbon mitigation rate was found to be at a maximum for D. tertiolecta. The reduction in CO2 between input and output gases was monitored to predict carbon fixation rates while biomass production and microalgal carbon content are used to calculate the actual carbon mitigation potential of D. tertiolecta. A renewal rate of 45 % of flask volume was utilised to maintain the culture in exponential growth with an average daily productivity of 0.07 g L(-1) day(-1). The results showed that 0.74 g L(-1) of biomass could be achieved after 7 days of semicontinuous production while a total carbon mitigation of 0.37 g L(-1) was achieved. This represented an increase of 0.18 g L(-1) in carbon mitigation rate compared to batch production of D. tertiolecta over the same cultivation period.

  8. Relationship between Health Insurance Status and the Pattern of Traditional Medicine Utilisation in Ghana

    PubMed Central

    Gyasi, Razak Mohammed

    2015-01-01

    This paper examines the relationship between national health insurance status and the pattern of traditional medicine (TRM) use among the general population in Ghana. A retrospective cross-sectional survey of randomly sampled adults, aged ≥18 years (N = 324), was conducted. The results indicate that TRM use was high with prevalence of over 86%. The study found no statistically significant association between national health insurance status and TRM utilisation (P > 0.05). Paradoxically, major sources of TRM, frequency of TRM use, comedical administration, and disclosure of TRM use to health care professionals differed significantly between the insured and uninsured subgroups (P < 0.001). Whereas effectiveness of TRM predicted its use for both insured [odds ratio (OR) = 4.374 (confidence interval (CI): 1.753–10.913; P = 0.002)] and uninsured [OR = 3.383 CI: 0.869–13.170; P = 0.039)], work experience predicted TRM use for the insured [OR = 1.528 (95% CI: 1.309–1.900; P = 0.019)]. Cultural specific variables and health philosophies rather than health insurance status may influence health care-seeking behaviour and TRM use. The enrollment of herbal-based therapies on the national health insurance medicine plan is exigent to ensure monitoring and rational use of TRM towards intercultural health care system in Ghana. PMID:26347791

  9. Learning preferences of first year nursing and midwifery students: utilising VARK.

    PubMed

    James, Santhamma; D'Amore, Angelo; Thomas, Theda

    2011-05-01

    The diversity of first year students is increasing with new schemes promoting access to higher education courses. It is important to assess the learning styles of students in order to cater for their differing learning needs. The aim of this study was to profile first year nursing/midwifery students at two campuses of Australian Catholic University, to investigate their learning preferences and the effect demographic background has on these preferences. We designed a survey to collect demographic data and incorporated the VARK (visual, aural, read-write and kinaesthetic) questionnaire to investigate the students' preferred learning modes. The kinaesthetic score of our students was the highest (7.34 ± 2.67), significantly differing from the other three modes (p<0.001). Demographic factors such as gender and age group did not influence mean scores of each sensory modality. The predominant preference was quadmodal utilising all four learning styles. The distribution of students preferring to learn by unimodal, bimodal, trimodal and quadmodal styles varied between demographic groupings. The rural students had significantly higher visual and kinaesthetic scores compared to their metropolitan counterparts. Students attending the rural campus had higher visual and read-write scores. Visual and aural scores were significantly lower for students from non-English speaking backgrounds. These findings have significant teaching and research implications. PMID:20826044

  10. The potential and limitations of utilising head impact injury models to assess the likelihood of significant head injury in infants after a fall.

    PubMed

    Cory, C Z; Jones, M D; James, D S; Leadbeatter, S; Nokes, L D

    2001-12-01

    The use of engineering principles in assessing head injury scenarios is of increasing significance in investigations into suspected child abuse. A fall scenario is often given as the history for a head injury to an infant. This paper addresses the basic engineering principles and factors to be considered when calculating the severity of a head impact after free-fall. The application of head injury models (HIMs) to ascertain the forces involved in childhood head injuries from impact is also discussed. Previous studies including Duhaime et al. [J. Neurosurg. 66 (1987) 409] and Nokes et al. [Forensic Sci. Int. 79 (1995) 85] have utilised HIMs for this purpose: this paper reviews those models most widely documented.The HIM currently considered the 'state-of-the-art' is the head injury criterion (HIC) and it is suggested that this model should be utilised for assessing head impact injury in child abuse cases where appropriate.

  11. Counselling Services Utilisation in a Malaysia Private University

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yin-Fah, Benjamin Chan; Sok-Foon, Yeoh; Migin, Melissa W.

    2016-01-01

    University can be an exciting yet challenging transition for students. Many universities provide counselling services to students who need it during their tertiary studies but many students tend to avoid counselling. This study was conducted to identify the counselling service experience among undergraduate students. The emphasis was on the past…

  12. Closing the Gap between Research Evidence and Clinical Practice: Jordanian Nurses' Perceived Barriers to Research Utilisation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Al Khalaileh, Murad; Al Qadire, Mohammad; Musa, Ahmad S.; Al-Khawaldeh, Omar A.; Al Qudah, Hani; Alhabahbeh, Atalla

    2016-01-01

    Background: The nursing profession is a combination of theory and practical skill, and nurses are required to generate and develop knowledge through implementing research into clinical practice. Considerable number of barriers could hind implementing research findings into practice. Barriers to research utilisation are not identified in the…

  13. Utilisation of Local Inputs in the Funding and Administration of Education in Nigeria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Akiri, Agharuwhe A.

    2014-01-01

    The article discussed how, why and who is in charge of administering and funding schools in Nigeria. The author utilised the relevant statistical approach which examined and discussed various political and historical trends affecting education. Besides this, relevant documented statistical data were used to both buttress and substantiate related…

  14. Utilisation of Used Palm Oil as an Alternative Fuel in Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Permchart, W.; Tanatvanit, S.

    2007-10-01

    This paper summarises the overview of the current situation of alternative energies in Thailand. The utilisation of bio-diesel as an alternative energy in two economic sectors (i.e. transport and industrial sectors), which have the largest energy consumption in the country, is mainly presented because it has seemed to be the most promising project among various energy conservation projects of the Thai government. Actually, there is another bio-fuel project, namely, the ethanol project for blending with gasoline to produce gasohol (E10) used in gasoline engines, which has been developed and already become to an important policy for energy conservation of the country. Due to much more large number of diesel has been utilised, the bio-diesel project has been the first priority one to solve the petroleum crisis problems. However, it is remarked that the utilisation of bio-diesel as an alternative fuel seems to be unsatisfactory because of various reasons. Some issues in terms of both government policies and technical problems have not been clearly addressed. Therefore, this paper not only presents the utilisation of bio-diesel in these two sectors but also discusses the production processes, characterisations and some experimental testing results of bio-diesel.

  15. Utilising Benchmarking to Inform Decision-Making at the Institutional Level: A Research-Informed Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Booth, Sara

    2013-01-01

    Benchmarking has traditionally been viewed as a way to compare data only; however, its utilisation as a more investigative, research-informed process to add rigor to decision-making processes at the institutional level is gaining momentum in the higher education sector. Indeed, with recent changes in the Australian quality environment from the…

  16. Long-term care and hospital utilisation by older people: an analysis of substitution rates.

    PubMed

    Forder, Julien

    2009-11-01

    Older people are intensive users of hospital and long-term care services. This paper explores the extent to which these services are substitutes. A small area analysis was used with both care home and (tariff cost-weighted) hospital utilisation for older people aggregated to electoral wards in England.Health and social-care structural equations were specified using a theoretical model. The estimation accounted for the skewed and censored nature of the data. For health utilisation, both a fixed effects instrumental variables GMM model and a generalised estimating equations (GEE) model were fitted, the later on a log dependent variable with predicted values of social care utilisation used to account for endogeneity (bootstrapping was used to derive standard errors). In addition to a GMM model, the social-care estimation used both two-part and tobit models (also with predicted health utilisation and bootstrapping).The results indicate that for each additional pound1 spent on care homes, hospital expenditure falls by pound0.35. Also, pound1 additional hospital spend corresponds to just over pound0.35 reduction on care home spend. With these cost substitution effects offsetting, a transfer of resources to care homes is efficient if the resultant outcome gain is greater than the outcome loss from reduced hospital use.

  17. Healthcare Resource Utilisation Associated with Herpes Zoster in a Prospective Cohort of Older Australian Adults

    PubMed Central

    Karki, Surendra; Newall, Anthony T.; MacIntyre, C. Raina; Heywood, Anita E.; McIntyre, Peter; Banks, Emily; Liu, Bette

    2016-01-01

    Background Herpes zoster (HZ) is a common condition that increases in incidence with older age but vaccines are available to prevent the disease. However, there are limited data estimating the health system burden attributable to herpes zoster by age. Methods In this study, we quantified excess healthcare resource usage associated with HZ during the acute/sub-acute period of disease (21days before to 90 days after onset) in 5952 cases and an equal number of controls matched on age, sex, and prior healthcare resource usage. Estimates were adjusted for potential confounders in multivariable regression models. Using population-based estimates of HZ incidence, we calculated the age-specific excess number of health service usage events attributable to HZ in the population. Results Per HZ case, there was an average of 0.06 (95% CI 0.04–0.08) excess hospitalisations, 1.61 (95% CI 1.51–1.69) excess general practitioner visits, 1.96 (95% CI 1.86–2.15) excess prescriptions filled and 0.11 (95% CI 0.09–0.13) excess emergency department visits. The average number of healthcare resource use events, and the estimated excess per 100,000 population increased with increasing age but were similar for men and women, except for higher rates of hospitalisation in men. The excess annual HZ associated burden of hospitalisations was highest in adults ≥80 years (N = 2244, 95%CI 1719–2767); GP visits was highest in those 60–69 years (N = 50567, 95%CI 39958–61105), prescriptions and ED visits were highest in 70–79 years (N = 50524, 95%CI 40634–60471 and N = 2891, 95%CI 2319–3449 respectively). Conclusions This study provides important data to establish the healthcare utilisation associated with HZ against which detailed cost-effectiveness analyses of HZ immunisation in older adults can be conducted. PMID:27483007

  18. Synthesis and evaluation of 2,5-dihydrochorismate analogues as inhibitors of the chorismate-utilising enzymes.

    PubMed

    Payne, Richard J; Bulloch, Esther M M; Toscano, Miguel M; Jones, Michelle A; Kerbarh, Olivier; Abell, Chris

    2009-06-01

    A library of 2,5-dihydrochorismate analogues were designed as inhibitors of the chorismate-utilising enzymes including anthranilate synthase, isochorismate synthase, salicylate synthase and 4-amino-4-deoxychorismate synthase. The inhibitors were synthesised in seven or eight steps from shikimic acid, sourced from star anise. The compounds exhibited moderate but differential inhibition against the four chorismate-utilising enzymes.

  19. Utilising PEARL to Teach Indigenous Art History: A Canadian Example

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robertson, Carmen

    2012-01-01

    This article explores the concepts advanced from the Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC)-funded project, "Exploring Problem-Based Learning pedagogy as transformative education in Indigenous Australian Studies". As an Indigenous art historian teaching at a mainstream university in Canada, I am constantly reflecting on how to better…

  20. Accuracy analysis of direct georeferenced UAV images utilising low-cost navigation sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briese, Christian; Wieser, Martin; Verhoeven, Geert; Glira, Philipp; Doneus, Michael; Pfeifer, Norbert

    2014-05-01

    control points should be used to improve the estimated values, especially to decrease the amount of systematic errors. For the bundle block adjustment the calibration of the camera and their temporal stability must be determined additionally. This contribution presents next to the theory a practical study on the accuracy analysis of direct georeferenced UAV imagery by low-cost navigation sensors. The analysis was carried out within the research project ARAP (automated (ortho)rectification of archaeological aerial photographs). The utilized UAS consists of the airplane "MAJA", manufactured by "Bormatec" (length: 1.2 m, wingspan: 2.2 m) equipped with the autopilot "ArduPilot Mega 2.5". For image acquisition the camera "Ricoh GR Digital IV" is utilised. The autopilot includes a GNSS receiver capable of DGPS (EGNOS), an inertial measurement system (INS), a barometer, and a magnetometer. In the study the achieved accuracies for the estimated position and orientation of the images are presented. The paper concludes with a summary of the remaining error sources and their possible corrections by applying further improvements on the utilised equipment and the direct georeferencing process.

  1. Catalytic dehydrogenation of propane by carbon dioxide: a medium-temperature thermochemical process for carbon dioxide utilisation.

    PubMed

    Du, X; Yao, B; Gonzalez-Cortes, S; Kuznetsov, V L; AlMegren, Hamid; Xiao, T; Edwards, P P

    2015-01-01

    The dehydrogenation of C3H8 in the presence of CO2 is an attractive catalytic route for C3H6 production. In studying the various possibilities to utilise CO2 to convert hydrocarbons using the sustainable energy source of solar thermal energy, thermodynamic calculations were carried out for the dehydrogenation of C3H8 using CO2for the process operating in the temperature range of 300-500 °C. Importantly, the results highlight the enhanced potential of C3H8 as compared to its lighter and heavier homologues (C2H6 and C4H10, respectively). To be utilised in this CO2 utilisation reaction the Gibbs free energy (ΔrGθm) of each reaction in the modelled, complete reacting system of the dehydrogenation of C3H8 in the presence of CO2 also indicate that further cracking of C3H6 will affect the ultimate yield and selectivity of the final products. In a parallel experimental study, catalytic tests of the dehydrogenation of C3H8 in the presence of CO2 over 5 wt%-Cr2O3/ZrO2 catalysts operating at 500 °C, atmospheric pressure, and for various C3H8 partial pressures and various overall GHSV (Gas Hourly Space Velocity) values. The results showed that an increase in the C3H8 partial pressure produced an inhibition of C3H8 conversion but, importantly, a promising enhancement of C3H6 selectivity. This phenomenon can be attributed to competitive adsorption on the catalyst between the generated C3H6 and inactivated C3H8, which inhibits any further cracking effect on C3H6 to produce by-products. As a comparison, the increase of the overall GHSV can also decrease the C3H8 conversion to a similar extent, but the further cracking of C3H6 cannot be limited. PMID:26392020

  2. Dietary Prebiotics and Probiotics Influence the Growth Performance, Feed Utilisation, and Body Indices of Snakehead (Channa striata) Fingerlings.

    PubMed

    Munir, Mohammad Bodrul; Hashim, Roshada; Abdul Manaf, Mohammad Suhaimee; Nor, Siti Azizah Mohd

    2016-08-01

    This study used a two-phase feeding trial to determine the influence of selected dietary prebiotics and probiotics on growth performance, feed utilisation, and morphological changes in snakehead (Channa striata) fingerlings as well as the duration of these effects over a post-experimental period without supplementation. Triplicate groups of fish (22.46 ±0.17 g) were raised on six different treatment diets: three prebiotics (0.2% β-glucan, 1% galacto-oligosaccharides [GOS], 0.5% mannan-oligosaccharides [MOS]), two probiotics (1% live yeast [Saccharomyces cerevisiae] and 0.01% Lactobacillus acidophilus [LBA] powder) and a control (unsupplemented) diet; there were three replicates for each treatment. All diets contained 40% crude protein and 12% crude lipid. Fish were fed to satiation three times daily. No mortalities were recorded during Phase 1; however, 14% mortality was documented in the control and prebiotic-amended fish during Phase 2. At the end of Phase 1, growth performance and feed utilisation were significantly higher (p<0.05) in the LBA-treated fish, followed by live yeast treatment, compared with all other diets tested. The performance of fish on the three prebiotic diets were not significantly different from one another but was significantly higher than the control diet. During Phase 2 (the post-feeding phase), fish growth continued until the 6th week for the probiotic-based diets but levelled off after four weeks for the fish fed the prebiotic diets. The feed conversion ratio (FCR) was higher in all treatments during the post-feeding period. The hepatosomatic index (HSI) did not differ significantly among the tested diets. The visceral somatic index (VSI) and intraperitoneal fat (IPF) were highest in the LBA-based diet and the control diet, respectively. The body indices were significantly different (p<0.05) between Phases 1 and 2. This study demonstrates that probiotic-based diets have a more positive influence on the growth, feed utilisation, and

  3. Dietary Prebiotics and Probiotics Influence the Growth Performance, Feed Utilisation, and Body Indices of Snakehead (Channa striata) Fingerlings

    PubMed Central

    Munir, Mohammad Bodrul; Hashim, Roshada; Abdul Manaf, Mohammad Suhaimee; Nor, Siti Azizah Mohd

    2016-01-01

    This study used a two-phase feeding trial to determine the influence of selected dietary prebiotics and probiotics on growth performance, feed utilisation, and morphological changes in snakehead (Channa striata) fingerlings as well as the duration of these effects over a post-experimental period without supplementation. Triplicate groups of fish (22.46 ±0.17 g) were raised on six different treatment diets: three prebiotics (0.2% β-glucan, 1% galacto-oligosaccharides [GOS], 0.5% mannan-oligosaccharides [MOS]), two probiotics (1% live yeast [Saccharomyces cerevisiae] and 0.01% Lactobacillus acidophilus [LBA] powder) and a control (unsupplemented) diet; there were three replicates for each treatment. All diets contained 40% crude protein and 12% crude lipid. Fish were fed to satiation three times daily. No mortalities were recorded during Phase 1; however, 14% mortality was documented in the control and prebiotic-amended fish during Phase 2. At the end of Phase 1, growth performance and feed utilisation were significantly higher (p<0.05) in the LBA-treated fish, followed by live yeast treatment, compared with all other diets tested. The performance of fish on the three prebiotic diets were not significantly different from one another but was significantly higher than the control diet. During Phase 2 (the post-feeding phase), fish growth continued until the 6th week for the probiotic-based diets but levelled off after four weeks for the fish fed the prebiotic diets. The feed conversion ratio (FCR) was higher in all treatments during the post-feeding period. The hepatosomatic index (HSI) did not differ significantly among the tested diets. The visceral somatic index (VSI) and intraperitoneal fat (IPF) were highest in the LBA-based diet and the control diet, respectively. The body indices were significantly different (p<0.05) between Phases 1 and 2. This study demonstrates that probiotic-based diets have a more positive influence on the growth, feed utilisation, and

  4. Dietary Prebiotics and Probiotics Influence the Growth Performance, Feed Utilisation, and Body Indices of Snakehead (Channa striata) Fingerlings.

    PubMed

    Munir, Mohammad Bodrul; Hashim, Roshada; Abdul Manaf, Mohammad Suhaimee; Nor, Siti Azizah Mohd

    2016-08-01

    This study used a two-phase feeding trial to determine the influence of selected dietary prebiotics and probiotics on growth performance, feed utilisation, and morphological changes in snakehead (Channa striata) fingerlings as well as the duration of these effects over a post-experimental period without supplementation. Triplicate groups of fish (22.46 ±0.17 g) were raised on six different treatment diets: three prebiotics (0.2% β-glucan, 1% galacto-oligosaccharides [GOS], 0.5% mannan-oligosaccharides [MOS]), two probiotics (1% live yeast [Saccharomyces cerevisiae] and 0.01% Lactobacillus acidophilus [LBA] powder) and a control (unsupplemented) diet; there were three replicates for each treatment. All diets contained 40% crude protein and 12% crude lipid. Fish were fed to satiation three times daily. No mortalities were recorded during Phase 1; however, 14% mortality was documented in the control and prebiotic-amended fish during Phase 2. At the end of Phase 1, growth performance and feed utilisation were significantly higher (p<0.05) in the LBA-treated fish, followed by live yeast treatment, compared with all other diets tested. The performance of fish on the three prebiotic diets were not significantly different from one another but was significantly higher than the control diet. During Phase 2 (the post-feeding phase), fish growth continued until the 6th week for the probiotic-based diets but levelled off after four weeks for the fish fed the prebiotic diets. The feed conversion ratio (FCR) was higher in all treatments during the post-feeding period. The hepatosomatic index (HSI) did not differ significantly among the tested diets. The visceral somatic index (VSI) and intraperitoneal fat (IPF) were highest in the LBA-based diet and the control diet, respectively. The body indices were significantly different (p<0.05) between Phases 1 and 2. This study demonstrates that probiotic-based diets have a more positive influence on the growth, feed utilisation, and

  5. Dietary Prebiotics and Probiotics Influence the Growth Performance, Feed Utilisation, and Body Indices of Snakehead (Channa striata) Fingerlings

    PubMed Central

    Munir, Mohammad Bodrul; Hashim, Roshada; Abdul Manaf, Mohammad Suhaimee; Nor, Siti Azizah Mohd

    2016-01-01

    This study used a two-phase feeding trial to determine the influence of selected dietary prebiotics and probiotics on growth performance, feed utilisation, and morphological changes in snakehead (Channa striata) fingerlings as well as the duration of these effects over a post-experimental period without supplementation. Triplicate groups of fish (22.46 ±0.17 g) were raised on six different treatment diets: three prebiotics (0.2% β-glucan, 1% galacto-oligosaccharides [GOS], 0.5% mannan-oligosaccharides [MOS]), two probiotics (1% live yeast [Saccharomyces cerevisiae] and 0.01% Lactobacillus acidophilus [LBA] powder) and a control (unsupplemented) diet; there were three replicates for each treatment. All diets contained 40% crude protein and 12% crude lipid. Fish were fed to satiation three times daily. No mortalities were recorded during Phase 1; however, 14% mortality was documented in the control and prebiotic-amended fish during Phase 2. At the end of Phase 1, growth performance and feed utilisation were significantly higher (p<0.05) in the LBA-treated fish, followed by live yeast treatment, compared with all other diets tested. The performance of fish on the three prebiotic diets were not significantly different from one another but was significantly higher than the control diet. During Phase 2 (the post-feeding phase), fish growth continued until the 6th week for the probiotic-based diets but levelled off after four weeks for the fish fed the prebiotic diets. The feed conversion ratio (FCR) was higher in all treatments during the post-feeding period. The hepatosomatic index (HSI) did not differ significantly among the tested diets. The visceral somatic index (VSI) and intraperitoneal fat (IPF) were highest in the LBA-based diet and the control diet, respectively. The body indices were significantly different (p<0.05) between Phases 1 and 2. This study demonstrates that probiotic-based diets have a more positive influence on the growth, feed utilisation, and

  6. Sociodemographic and health behavioural factors associated with access to and utilisation of eye care in Korea: Korea Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2008–2012

    PubMed Central

    Rim, Tyler Hyungtaek; Choi, Moonjung; Yoon, Jin Sook; Kim, Sung Soo

    2015-01-01

    Objective To determine the sociodemographic and health behavioural factors associated with access to and utilisation of eye care in Korea. Design Nationwide cross-sectional study Methods 25 752 Koreans over the age of 30 were assessed from a national representative survey. We analysed independent variables of self-reporting eye clinic visits through multivariable analyses of sociodemographic factors. The time since the last visit to an eye clinic was used to assess access to and utilisation of eye care. Results Of the 25 752 respondents, 8237 (32.0%) visited an eye clinic in the past year, 11 028 (42.8%) were seen more than 1 year ago, while 6487 (25.2%) had never seen an ophthalmologist. Eye clinic utilisation was statistically associated with older age, female sex, higher household income, higher education levels, living in an urban area, and having comorbidities including diabetes and hypertension. Middle-aged men between 30 and 49 years were found to be less likely to receive eye care compared to the rest of the population, and the proportion that did plummeted after the financial crisis of 2007. Conclusions There is a substantial sociodemographic disparity in eye care utilisation in Korea, and men with low financial income and education level are especially at risk. Use of eye care among middle-aged men has decreased since the global financial crisis that began in 2007, and therefore healthcare policies and public interventions should be targeted at vulnerable groups to promote access to medical care. PMID:26185177

  7. Agricultural waste utilisation strategies and demand for urban waste compost: Evidence from smallholder farmers in Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Nigussie, Abebe; Kuyper, Thomas W; de Neergaard, Andreas

    2015-10-01

    The use of agricultural waste for soil amendment is limited in developing countries. Competition between fuel and feed is the major cause for the insufficient application of agricultural waste on cropland. The aims of this study were therefore (i) to investigate variation in agricultural waste allocation between groups of farmers with different livelihood strategies and link this allocation with the nutrient balances of their production systems, (ii) to identify farm characteristics that influence utilisation of agricultural waste for soil amendment, and (iii) to assess demand for urban waste compost. A total of 220 farmers were selected randomly and interviewed using standardised semi-structured questionnaires. Four groups of farmers, namely (i) field crop farmers, (ii) vegetable producers, (iii) ornamental-plant growers, and (iv) farmers practising mixed farming, were identified using categorical principal component and two-step cluster analyses. Field crop farmers produced the largest quantity of agricultural waste, but they allocated 80% of manure to fuel and 85% of crop residues to feed. Only <10% of manure and crop residues were applied on soils. Farmers also sold manure and crop residues, and this generated 5-10% of their annual income. Vegetable and ornamental-plant growers allocated over 40% of manure and crop residues to soil amendment. Hence, nutrient balances were less negative in vegetable production systems. Education, farm size, land tenure and access to extension services were the variables that impeded allocation of agricultural waste to soil amendment. Replacement of fuel and feed through sustainable means is a viable option for soil fertility management. Urban waste compost should also be used as alternative option for soil amendment. Our results showed variation in compost demand between farmers. Education, landownership, experience with compost and access to extension services explained variation in compost demand. We also demonstrated that

  8. Waste generation and utilisation in micro-sized furniture-manufacturing enterprises in Turkey.

    PubMed

    Top, Y

    2015-01-01

    The number of small-scale businesses within most national economies is generally high, especially in developing countries. Often these businesses have a weak economic status and limited environmental awareness. The type and amount of waste produced, and the recycling methods adopted by these businesses during their operation can have negative effects on the environment. This study investigated the types of waste generated and the recycling methods adopted in micro-sized enterprises engaged in the manufacture of furniture. An assessment was also made of whether the characteristics of the enterprise had any effect on the waste recycling methods that were practised. A survey was conducted of 31 enterprises in the furniture industry in Gumushane province, Turkey, which is considered a developing economy. Surveys were undertaken via face-to-face interviews. It was found that medium-density fibreboard (MDF), and to a lesser extent, chipboard, were used in the manufacture of furniture, and two major types of waste in the form of fine dust and small fragments of board are generated during the cutting of these boards. Of the resulting composite board waste, 96.9% was used for heating homes and workplaces, where it was burnt under conditions of incomplete combustion. Enterprises were found to have adopted other methods to utilise their wastes in addition to using them as fuel. Such enterprises include those operating from a basement or first floor of a building in the cities, those continuing production throughout the year, those in need for capital and those enterprises not operating a dust-collection system. PMID:25453314

  9. Waste generation and utilisation in micro-sized furniture-manufacturing enterprises in Turkey.

    PubMed

    Top, Y

    2015-01-01

    The number of small-scale businesses within most national economies is generally high, especially in developing countries. Often these businesses have a weak economic status and limited environmental awareness. The type and amount of waste produced, and the recycling methods adopted by these businesses during their operation can have negative effects on the environment. This study investigated the types of waste generated and the recycling methods adopted in micro-sized enterprises engaged in the manufacture of furniture. An assessment was also made of whether the characteristics of the enterprise had any effect on the waste recycling methods that were practised. A survey was conducted of 31 enterprises in the furniture industry in Gumushane province, Turkey, which is considered a developing economy. Surveys were undertaken via face-to-face interviews. It was found that medium-density fibreboard (MDF), and to a lesser extent, chipboard, were used in the manufacture of furniture, and two major types of waste in the form of fine dust and small fragments of board are generated during the cutting of these boards. Of the resulting composite board waste, 96.9% was used for heating homes and workplaces, where it was burnt under conditions of incomplete combustion. Enterprises were found to have adopted other methods to utilise their wastes in addition to using them as fuel. Such enterprises include those operating from a basement or first floor of a building in the cities, those continuing production throughout the year, those in need for capital and those enterprises not operating a dust-collection system.

  10. Agricultural waste utilisation strategies and demand for urban waste compost: Evidence from smallholder farmers in Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Nigussie, Abebe; Kuyper, Thomas W; de Neergaard, Andreas

    2015-10-01

    The use of agricultural waste for soil amendment is limited in developing countries. Competition between fuel and feed is the major cause for the insufficient application of agricultural waste on cropland. The aims of this study were therefore (i) to investigate variation in agricultural waste allocation between groups of farmers with different livelihood strategies and link this allocation with the nutrient balances of their production systems, (ii) to identify farm characteristics that influence utilisation of agricultural waste for soil amendment, and (iii) to assess demand for urban waste compost. A total of 220 farmers were selected randomly and interviewed using standardised semi-structured questionnaires. Four groups of farmers, namely (i) field crop farmers, (ii) vegetable producers, (iii) ornamental-plant growers, and (iv) farmers practising mixed farming, were identified using categorical principal component and two-step cluster analyses. Field crop farmers produced the largest quantity of agricultural waste, but they allocated 80% of manure to fuel and 85% of crop residues to feed. Only <10% of manure and crop residues were applied on soils. Farmers also sold manure and crop residues, and this generated 5-10% of their annual income. Vegetable and ornamental-plant growers allocated over 40% of manure and crop residues to soil amendment. Hence, nutrient balances were less negative in vegetable production systems. Education, farm size, land tenure and access to extension services were the variables that impeded allocation of agricultural waste to soil amendment. Replacement of fuel and feed through sustainable means is a viable option for soil fertility management. Urban waste compost should also be used as alternative option for soil amendment. Our results showed variation in compost demand between farmers. Education, landownership, experience with compost and access to extension services explained variation in compost demand. We also demonstrated that

  11. Analysis of regulation of pentose utilisation in Aspergillus niger reveals evolutionary adaptations in Eurotiales

    PubMed Central

    Battaglia, E.; Visser, L.; Nijssen, A.; van Veluw, G.J.; Wösten, H.A.B.; de Vries, R.P.

    2011-01-01

    Aspergilli are commonly found in soil and on decaying plant material. D-xylose and L-arabinose are highly abundant components of plant biomass. They are released from polysaccharides by fungi using a set of extracellular enzymes and subsequently converted intracellularly through the pentose catabolic pathway (PCP). In this study, the L-arabinose responsive transcriptional activator (AraR) is identified in Aspergillus niger and was shown to control the L-arabinose catabolic pathway as well as expression of genes encoding extracellular L-arabinose releasing enzymes. AraR interacts with the D-xylose-responsive transcriptional activator XlnR in the regulation of the pentose catabolic pathway, but not with respect to release of L-arabinose and D-xylose. AraR was only identified in the Eurotiales, more specifically in the family Trichocomaceae and appears to have originated from a gene duplication event (from XlnR) after this order or family split from the other filamentous ascomycetes. XlnR is present in all filamentous ascomycetes with the exception of members of the Onygenales. Since the Onygenales and Eurotiales are both part of the subclass Eurotiomycetidae, this indicates that strong adaptation of the regulation of pentose utilisation has occurred at this evolutionary node. In Eurotiales a unique two-component regulatory system for pentose release and metabolism has evolved, while the regulatory system was lost in the Onygenales. The observed evolutionary changes (in Eurotiomycetidae) mainly affect the regulatory system as in contrast, homologues for most genes of the L-arabinose/D-xylose catabolic pathway are present in all the filamentous fungi, irrespective of the presence of XlnR and/or AraR. PMID:21892241

  12. Lactate and the GPR81 receptor in metabolic regulation: implications for adipose tissue function and fatty acid utilisation by muscle during exercise.

    PubMed

    Rooney, Kieron; Trayhurn, Paul

    2011-11-01

    Lactate is increasingly recognised to be more than a simple end product of anaerobic glycolysis. Skeletal muscle and white adipose tissue are considered to be the main sites of lactate production and release. Recent studies have demonstrated that there is a specific G-protein coupled receptor for lactate, GPR81, which is expressed primarily in adipose tissue, and also in muscle. Lactate inhibits lipolysis in adipose tissue by mediating, through GPR81, the anti-lipolytic action of insulin. A high proportion (50 % or more) of the glucose utilised by white adipose tissue is converted to lactate and lactate production by the tissue increases markedly in obesity; this is likely to reflect a switch towards anaerobic metabolism with the development of hypoxia in the tissue. During exercise, there is a shift in fuel utilisation by muscle from lipid to carbohydrate, but this does not appear to be a result of the inhibition of lipolysis in the main adipose tissue depots by muscle-derived lactate. It is suggested instead that a putative autocrine lactate loop in myocytes may regulate fuel utilisation by muscle during exercise, operating via a muscle GPR81 receptor. In addition to being an important substrate, lactate is a key signal in metabolic regulation.

  13. Diagnostic testing during pregnancy: a descriptive analysis of utilisation data.

    PubMed

    Rushworth, R L; Bell, S M; Rob, M I; Taylor, P T

    1994-12-01

    To describe patterns of diagnostic testing during the antenatal period and to assess the potential benefit of using Medicare claims data in monitoring testing practice, we examined the matched claims data (with identifying details removed) on approximately 10,000 women having a confinement for which a Medicare benefit was claimed between 1 July and 30 September 1990. The results showed that almost all the women included in the study sample had an ultrasound and blood group and antibody examination. A smaller proportion had serological tests for syphilis (77 per cent), rubella (51 per cent) and hepatitis B carriage (73 per cent). Two-thirds had urine microscopy and culture, and under half (40 per cent) had serum alpha-fetoprotein estimation. Few (18 per cent) had a claim processed for microscopy and culture of a genital swab and fewer than 8 per cent claimed for any other pathology tests. There were differences in the proportions having tests, depending on whether the clinician managing the confinement was a specialist obstetrician or a general practitioner, and depending on geographic area and age group. While the data do not represent all women having a confinement in New South Wales, the selective use of antenatal diagnostic tests found in this study is of considerable public health importance and analysis of claims data can provide useful information for health professionals. PMID:7536479

  14. Improving utilisation of dental services by understanding cultural difference.

    PubMed

    Johnston, J A

    1993-10-01

    There is considerable health and medical research and anecdotal evidence showing that members of different cultural groups and people from lower socio-economic status and/or disadvantaged ethnic minority groups are prone to increased morbidity and early mortality. It is also clear that similar patterns are found in terms of dental health status and dental health morbidity. New Zealand data from the Second International Collaborative Study (ICSII) clearly illustrate that poorer health status overall and poorer dental health status are experienced by certain sections and groups within the population. Data from these studies suggest that members of lower socio-economic status groups, different ethnic groups and those with different cultural affiliations experience different health status and use the health services at differential rates. Some of the factors that appear to influence this are clearly related to cultural beliefs and attitudes. Future efforts by the New Zealand health services and in particular by the New Zealand dental health services to redress the situation need to be based on a clear understanding of the many factors that limit the availability and uptake of preventive and dental health care services by high risk groups. Understanding cultural difference is a key requirement.

  15. Differences between mono-generic and mixed diatom silicon isotope compositions trace present and past nutrient utilisation off Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doering, Kristin; Ehlert, Claudia; Grasse, Patricia; Crosta, Xavier; Fleury, Sophie; Frank, Martin; Schneider, Ralph

    2016-03-01

    In this study we combine for the first time silicon (Si) isotope compositions of small mixed diatom species (δ30SibSiO2) and of large handpicked mono-generic (i.e. genus = Coscinodiscus) diatom samples (δ30SiCoscino) with diatom assemblages extracted from marine sediments in the Peruvian upwelling region in order to constrain present and past silicate utilisation. The extension of a previous core-top data set from the Peruvian shelf demonstrates that δ30SiCoscino values record near-complete Si utilisation, as these are similar to the isotopic composition of the subsurface source waters feeding the upwelling. In contrast, the δ30SibSiO2 of small mixed diatom species increase southward along the shelf as well as towards the shore. We attribute highest δ30SibSiO2 values partly to transient iron limitation but primarily to the gradual increase of Si isotope fractionation within the seasonal diatom succession, which are mainly recorded by small diatom species during intense bloom events. In contrast, lower δ30SibSiO2 values are related to initial Si isotope utilisation during periods of weak upwelling, when low Si(OH)4 concentrations do not permit intense blooms and small diatom species record substantially lower δ30Si signatures. As such, we propose that the intensity of the upwelling can be deduced from the offset between δ30SibSiO2 and δ30SiCoscino (Δ30Sicoscino-bSiO2), which is low for strong upwelling conditions and high for prevailing weak upwelling. We apply the information extracted from surface sediments to generate a record of the present-day main upwelling region covering the past 17,700 years and find that this location has also been characterized by a persistent offset (Δ30Sicoscino-bSiO2). By comparison with the diatom assemblages we show that the coastal upwelling system changed markedly between weak and strong upwelling conditions. In addition, our model calculations to quantify species-specific Si isotope fractionation effects based on the

  16. Performance of biofuel processes utilising separate lignin and carbohydrate processing.

    PubMed

    Melin, Kristian; Kohl, Thomas; Koskinen, Jukka; Hurme, Markku

    2015-09-01

    Novel biofuel pathways with increased product yields are evaluated against conventional lignocellulosic biofuel production processes: methanol or methane production via gasification and ethanol production via steam-explosion pre-treatment. The novel processes studied are ethanol production combined with methanol production by gasification, hydrocarbon fuel production with additional hydrogen produced from lignin residue gasification, methanol or methane synthesis using synthesis gas from lignin residue gasification and additional hydrogen obtained by aqueous phase reforming in synthesis gas production. The material and energy balances of the processes were calculated by Aspen flow sheet models and add on excel calculations applicable at the conceptual design stage to evaluate the pre-feasibility of the alternatives. The processes were compared using the following criteria: energy efficiency from biomass to products, primary energy efficiency, GHG reduction potential and economy (expressed as net present value: NPV). Several novel biorefinery concepts gave higher energy yields, GHG reduction potential and NPV. PMID:26056782

  17. Performance of biofuel processes utilising separate lignin and carbohydrate processing.

    PubMed

    Melin, Kristian; Kohl, Thomas; Koskinen, Jukka; Hurme, Markku

    2015-09-01

    Novel biofuel pathways with increased product yields are evaluated against conventional lignocellulosic biofuel production processes: methanol or methane production via gasification and ethanol production via steam-explosion pre-treatment. The novel processes studied are ethanol production combined with methanol production by gasification, hydrocarbon fuel production with additional hydrogen produced from lignin residue gasification, methanol or methane synthesis using synthesis gas from lignin residue gasification and additional hydrogen obtained by aqueous phase reforming in synthesis gas production. The material and energy balances of the processes were calculated by Aspen flow sheet models and add on excel calculations applicable at the conceptual design stage to evaluate the pre-feasibility of the alternatives. The processes were compared using the following criteria: energy efficiency from biomass to products, primary energy efficiency, GHG reduction potential and economy (expressed as net present value: NPV). Several novel biorefinery concepts gave higher energy yields, GHG reduction potential and NPV.

  18. Possibilities of municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash utilisation.

    PubMed

    Hartmann, Silvie; Koval, Lukáš; Škrobánková, Hana; Matýsek, Dalibor; Winter, Franz; Purgar, Amon

    2015-08-01

    Properties of the waste treatment residual fly ash generated from municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash were investigated in this study. Six different mortar blends with the addition of the municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash were evaluated. The Portland cement replacement levels of the municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash used were 25%, 30% and 50%. Both, raw and washed municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash samples were examined. According to the mineralogical composition measurements, a 22.6% increase in the pozzolanic/hydraulic properties was observed for the washed municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash sample. The maximum replacement level of 25% for the washed municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash in mortar blends was established in order to preserve the compressive strength properties. Moreover, the leaching characteristics of the crushed mortar blend was analysed in order to examine the immobilisation of its hazardous contents.

  19. Possibilities of municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash utilisation.

    PubMed

    Hartmann, Silvie; Koval, Lukáš; Škrobánková, Hana; Matýsek, Dalibor; Winter, Franz; Purgar, Amon

    2015-08-01

    Properties of the waste treatment residual fly ash generated from municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash were investigated in this study. Six different mortar blends with the addition of the municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash were evaluated. The Portland cement replacement levels of the municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash used were 25%, 30% and 50%. Both, raw and washed municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash samples were examined. According to the mineralogical composition measurements, a 22.6% increase in the pozzolanic/hydraulic properties was observed for the washed municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash sample. The maximum replacement level of 25% for the washed municipal solid waste incinerator fly ash in mortar blends was established in order to preserve the compressive strength properties. Moreover, the leaching characteristics of the crushed mortar blend was analysed in order to examine the immobilisation of its hazardous contents. PMID:26060198

  20. Utilising polyphenols for the clinical management of Candida albicans biofilms.

    PubMed

    Shahzad, Muhammad; Sherry, Leighann; Rajendran, Ranjith; Edwards, Christine A; Combet, Emilie; Ramage, Gordon

    2014-09-01

    Polyphenols (PPs) are secondary metabolites abundant in plant-derived foods. They are reported to exhibit antimicrobial activity that may offer an alternative to existing antimicrobials. The aim of this study was to evaluate the antifungal potential of PPs against Candida albicans biofilms that are commonly recalcitrant to antifungal therapy. The antifungal activity of 14 PPs was assessed in terms of planktonic and sessile minimum inhibitory concentrations (PMICs and SMICs, respectively) against various C. albicans clinical isolates. The most active PPs were further tested for their effect on C. albicans adhesion and biofilm growth using standard biomass assays, microscopy and quantitative gene expression. Of the 14 PPs tested, 7 were effective inhibitors of planktonic growth, of which pyrogallol (PYG) was the most effective (PMIC₅₀=78 μg/mL), followed by curcumin (CUR) (PMIC₅₀=100 μg/mL) and pyrocatechol (PMIC₅₀=625 μg/mL). Both PYG and CUR displayed activity against C. albicans biofilms (SMIC₅₀=40 μg/mL and 50 μg/mL, respectively), although they did not disrupt the biofilm or directly affect the cellular structure. Overall, CUR displayed superior biofilm activity, significantly inhibiting initial cell adhesion following pre-coating (P<0.01), biofilm growth (P<0.05) and gene expression (P<0.05). This inhibitory effect diminished with prolonged CUR exposure, although it still inhibited by 50% after 4h adhesion. Overall, CUR exhibited positive antibiofilm properties that could be used at the basis for development of similar molecules, although further cellular and in vivo studies are required to explore its precise mechanism of action. PMID:25104135

  1. [Utilisation of community health centres in Koulikoro region, Mali].

    PubMed

    Sidibé, T; Sangho, H; Doumbia, S; Coulibaly, L; Kéïta, H D

    2008-01-01

    In Mali since the adoption of community health center (CSCOM) politics, their number knew a progression remarkable: 370 in 1998 and 660 in the end of 2003. Concerning the health staff, the ratio always remained per capita weak in relation to the international norms. In 2001 for the first level of health center, the quantum was: 1 physician for 14,612 inhabitants (norm being of 1/10,000); 1 nurse for 13,989 inhabitants (WHO norm being of 1/10,000). In spite of the well stocked efforts, the foreseen objectives are far from being reached. For example, the used rate of curative consultation was of 0.19 new contact/year/inhabitant. The foreseen objective is of 0.50. Our survey had as objectives to study the reasons of CSCOM's under frequenting, to identify the reasons and to propose some recommendations to improve the situation. We conducted a cross-sectional study that had taken place in Banamba and Dioïla in the Koulikoro's region in April 19 to May 8, 2004. Interview have been performed with the head of CSCOM, the CSCOM's staff, the persons responsible of community health association (ASACO), the mothers residing in the areas at least six months and having a child less than 5 years and the community leaders. We found that women in Banamba (89%) frequented the CSCOM more that those of Dioïla (60%). The reasons of the CSCOM's under frequenting are especially bound to the staff's instability, the geographical accessibility, to poverty and to the insufficiency of information. We recommend to the different actors to inform and to sensitize the population on the importance of the CSCOM's activities, to the state to take the staff's part in charge to improve their stability, in the ASACO to establish the contracts of work with the staff. PMID:19617149

  2. Charcoal from a prehistoric copper mine in the Austrian Alps: dendrochronological and dendrological data, demand for wood and forest utilisation.

    PubMed

    Pichler, Thomas; Nicolussi, Kurt; Goldenberg, Gert; Hanke, Klaus; Kovács, Kristóf; Thurner, Andrea

    2013-02-01

    During prehistory fire-setting was the most appropriate technique for exploiting ore deposits. Charcoal fragments found in the course of archaeological excavations in a small mine called Mauk E in the area of Schwaz/Brixlegg (Tyrol, Austria) are argued to be evidence for the use of this technology. Dendrochronological analyses of the charcoal samples yielded calendar dates for the mining activities showing that the exploitation of the Mauk E mine lasted approximately one decade in the late 8th century BC. Dendrological studies show that the miners utilised stem wood of spruce and fir from forests with high stand density for fire-setting and that the exploitation of the Mauk E mine had only a limited impact on the local forests.

  3. Charcoal from a prehistoric copper mine in the Austrian Alps: dendrochronological and dendrological data, demand for wood and forest utilisation

    PubMed Central

    Pichler, Thomas; Nicolussi, Kurt; Goldenberg, Gert; Hanke, Klaus; Kovács, Kristóf; Thurner, Andrea

    2013-01-01

    During prehistory fire-setting was the most appropriate technique for exploiting ore deposits. Charcoal fragments found in the course of archaeological excavations in a small mine called Mauk E in the area of Schwaz/Brixlegg (Tyrol, Austria) are argued to be evidence for the use of this technology. Dendrochronological analyses of the charcoal samples yielded calendar dates for the mining activities showing that the exploitation of the Mauk E mine lasted approximately one decade in the late 8th century BC. Dendrological studies show that the miners utilised stem wood of spruce and fir from forests with high stand density for fire-setting and that the exploitation of the Mauk E mine had only a limited impact on the local forests. PMID:23565025

  4. Charcoal from a prehistoric copper mine in the Austrian Alps: dendrochronological and dendrological data, demand for wood and forest utilisation.

    PubMed

    Pichler, Thomas; Nicolussi, Kurt; Goldenberg, Gert; Hanke, Klaus; Kovács, Kristóf; Thurner, Andrea

    2013-02-01

    During prehistory fire-setting was the most appropriate technique for exploiting ore deposits. Charcoal fragments found in the course of archaeological excavations in a small mine called Mauk E in the area of Schwaz/Brixlegg (Tyrol, Austria) are argued to be evidence for the use of this technology. Dendrochronological analyses of the charcoal samples yielded calendar dates for the mining activities showing that the exploitation of the Mauk E mine lasted approximately one decade in the late 8th century BC. Dendrological studies show that the miners utilised stem wood of spruce and fir from forests with high stand density for fire-setting and that the exploitation of the Mauk E mine had only a limited impact on the local forests. PMID:23565025

  5. An early deployment strategy for carbon capture, utilisation, and storage

    SciTech Connect

    Carter, L.D.

    2012-11-01

    This report describes the current use of CO2 for EOR, and discusses potential expansion of EOR using CO2 from power plants. Analysis of potential EOR development in the USA, where most current CO2-based EOR production takes place, indicates that relatively low cost, traditional sources of CO2 for EOR (CO2 domes and CO2 from natural gas processing plants) are insufficient to exploit the full potential of EOR. To achieve that full potential will require use of CO2 from combustion and gasification systems, such as fossil fuel power plants, where capture of CO2 is more costly. The cost of current CCUS systems, even with the revenue stream for sale of the CO2 for EOR, is too high to result in broad deployment of the technology in the near term. In the longer term, research and development may be sufficient to reduce CO2 capture costs to a point where CCUS would be broadly deployed. This report describes a case study of conditions in the USA to explore a financial incentive to promote early deployment of CCUS, providing a range of immediate benefits to society, greater likelihood of reducing the long-term cost of CCUS, and greater likelihood of broad deployment of CCUS and CCS in the long term. Additionally, it may be possible to craft such an incentive in a manner that its cost is more than offset by taxes flowing from increased domestic oil production. An example of such an incentive is included in this report.

  6. The resource utilisation of medically unexplained physical symptoms

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Kimberley; Johnson, Malcolm H; Harris, Julie; Sundram, Frederick

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: As patients with medically unexplained physical symptoms may present frequently to hospital settings and receive potentially unnecessary investigations and treatments, we aimed to assess the frequency and type of medically unexplained physical symptoms presentations to clinical services and estimate the associated direct healthcare costs. Methods: This study was undertaken at the largest district health board in New Zealand. All patients with a diagnosed presentation of medically unexplained physical symptoms in 2013 were identified using the district health board’s clinical coding system. The clinical records (medical and psychiatric) of 49 patients were examined in detail to extricate all medically unexplained physical symptoms–related secondary care activity within 6 months before or after their medically unexplained physical symptoms presentation. Standardised national costing methodology was used to calculate the associated healthcare costs. Results: In all, 49% of patients attended hospital settings at least twice during 2013. The majority of presentations were for neurological or respiratory concerns. The total cost for the sample was GBP89,636 (median: GBP1,221). Costs were most significant in the areas of inpatient admissions and emergency care. Conclusion: Medically unexplained physical symptoms result in frequent presentations to hospital settings. The costs incurred are substantial and comparable to the costs of chronic medical conditions with identifiable pathology. Improving recognition and management of medically unexplained physical symptoms has potential to offer more appropriate and cost-effective healthcare outcomes.

  7. Economic and environmental benefits of landfill gas utilisation in Oman.

    PubMed

    Abushammala, Mohammed Fm; Qazi, Wajeeha A; Azam, Mohammed-Hasham; Mehmood, Umais A; Al-Mufragi, Ghithaa A; Alrawahi, Noor-Alhuda

    2016-08-01

    Municipal solid waste disposed in landfill sites decomposes under anaerobic conditions and produces so-called landfill-gas, which contains 30%-40% of carbon dioxide (CO2) and 50%-60% of methane (CH4). Methane has the potential of causing global warming 25 times more than CO2 Therefore, migration of landfill-gas from landfills to the surrounding environment can potentially affect human life and environment. Thus, this research aims to determine municipal solid waste generation in Oman over the years 1971-2030, to quantify annual CH4 emissions inventory that resulted from this waste over the same period of time, and to determine the economic and environmental benefits of capturing the CH4 gas for energy production. It is found that cumulative municipal solid waste landfilled in Oman reaches 3089 Giga gram (Gg) in the year 2030, of which approximately 85 Gg of CH4 emissions are produced in the year 2030. The study also found that capturing CH4 emissions between the years 2016 and 2030 could attract revenues of up to US$333 million and US$291 million from the carbon reduction and electricity generation, simultaneously. It is concluded that CH4 emissions from solid waste in Oman increases enormously with time, and capture of this gas for energy production could provide a sustainable waste management solution in Oman.

  8. The resource utilisation of medically unexplained physical symptoms

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Kimberley; Johnson, Malcolm H; Harris, Julie; Sundram, Frederick

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: As patients with medically unexplained physical symptoms may present frequently to hospital settings and receive potentially unnecessary investigations and treatments, we aimed to assess the frequency and type of medically unexplained physical symptoms presentations to clinical services and estimate the associated direct healthcare costs. Methods: This study was undertaken at the largest district health board in New Zealand. All patients with a diagnosed presentation of medically unexplained physical symptoms in 2013 were identified using the district health board’s clinical coding system. The clinical records (medical and psychiatric) of 49 patients were examined in detail to extricate all medically unexplained physical symptoms–related secondary care activity within 6 months before or after their medically unexplained physical symptoms presentation. Standardised national costing methodology was used to calculate the associated healthcare costs. Results: In all, 49% of patients attended hospital settings at least twice during 2013. The majority of presentations were for neurological or respiratory concerns. The total cost for the sample was GBP89,636 (median: GBP1,221). Costs were most significant in the areas of inpatient admissions and emergency care. Conclusion: Medically unexplained physical symptoms result in frequent presentations to hospital settings. The costs incurred are substantial and comparable to the costs of chronic medical conditions with identifiable pathology. Improving recognition and management of medically unexplained physical symptoms has potential to offer more appropriate and cost-effective healthcare outcomes. PMID:27635250

  9. Rapid discrimination of maggots utilising ATR-FTIR spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Pickering, Claire L; Hands, James R; Fullwood, Leanne M; Smith, Judith A; Baker, Matthew J

    2015-04-01

    Entomological evidence is used in forensic investigations to indicate time since death. The species and age of maggots or flies that are present at the scene can be used when estimating how much time has passed since death. Current methods that are used to identify species and developmental stage of larvae and fly samples are highly subjective, costly and often time consuming processes and require the expertise of an entomologist or species identification via DNA analysis. The use of vibrational spectroscopy, as an alternative identification method, would allow for a quicker, cheaper and less subjective technique and would allow entomological evidence to be used more commonly in the forensic process. This proof of principle study shows the potential for using attenuated total reflection-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) as a rapid tool for differentiating between various species of larvae, such as those commonly found at crime scenes. The proposed regime would provide a rapid and valuable tool resulting in reduced time for both species identification and life cycle determination, particularly in forensic situations.

  10. Utilisation of biochar and superabsorbent polymers for soil amendment.

    PubMed

    Ekebafe, M O; Ekebafe, L O; Maliki, M

    2013-01-01

    The application of superabsorbent polymers (SAPs) and/or biochars to stressed lands offer solutions to several critical ecological, energy and economic challenges posed by degraded lands due to human activities. These substances are like, 'artificial humus' as they are hydrophilic and contain carboxylic groups (SAPs) which enable them to bind cations and water and sequester carbon from air to reverse global warming (biochars). Several research studies using these substances point to their ability to increase the plant-available water in the soil which enables the plants to survive longer with water shortage, increase soil fertility and agricultural yields, improve soil structure, aeration and water penetration, reduce use of synthetic fertilisers and pesticides, reduce nitrous oxide and methane emission from soil, reduce nitrate and farm chemicals leaching into watersheds, convert green and brown wastes into valuable resources, and reduce the evapotranspiration rate of the plants. SAPs and biochars induce a significantly higher growth rate in plants; they bind heavy metals and mitigate their action on plants as well as mitigate the effects of salinity. This paper reviews what is known about these claims and considers the wider environmental implications of the adoption of these processess. The intention is not just to summarise the current knowledge but also to identify gaps that require further research.

  11. Utilising social media contents for flood inundation mapping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schröter, Kai; Dransch, Doris; Fohringer, Joachim; Kreibich, Heidi

    2016-04-01

    Data about the hazard and its consequences are scarce and not readily available during and shortly after a disaster. An information source which should be explored in a more efficient way is eyewitness accounts via social media. This research presents a methodology that leverages social media content to support rapid inundation mapping, including inundation extent and water depth in the case of floods. It uses quantitative data that are estimated from photos extracted from social media posts and their integration with established data. Due to the rapid availability of these posts compared to traditional data sources such as remote sensing data, areas affected by a flood, for example, can be determined quickly. Key challenges are to filter the large number of posts to a manageable amount of potentially useful inundation-related information, and to interpret and integrate the posts into mapping procedures in a timely manner. We present a methodology and a tool ("PostDistiller") to filter geo-located posts from social media services which include links to photos and to further explore this spatial distributed contextualized in situ information for inundation mapping. The June 2013 flood in Dresden is used as an application case study in which we evaluate the utilization of this approach and compare the resulting spatial flood patterns and inundation depths to 'traditional' data sources and mapping approaches like water level observations and remote sensing flood masks. The outcomes of the application case are encouraging. Strengths of the proposed procedure are that information for the estimation of inundation depth is rapidly available, particularly in urban areas where it is of high interest and of great value because alternative information sources like remote sensing data analysis do not perform very well. The uncertainty of derived inundation depth data and the uncontrollable availability of the information sources are major threats to the utility of the approach.

  12. Factors associated with non-utilisation of health service for childbirth in Timor-Leste: evidence from the 2009-2010 Demographic and Health Survey

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Timor-Leste is a young developing country in Asia. Most of its infrastructure was destroyed after a long armed conflict for independence. Despite recent expansion of health facilities and investment in healthcare, maternal mortality remains high with most mothers still giving birth at home. This study investigated factors affecting the non-utilisation of health service for childbirth in the aftermath of the independence conflict. Methods The Timor-Leste Demographic and Health Survey 2009-2010 was the latest two-stage national survey, which used validated questionnaires to obtain information from 26 clusters derived from 13 districts of the country. Factors influencing non-utilisation of health facility for childbirth were investigated using univariate and multivariable logistic regression analyses, accounting for the cluster sampling and sample weight of the survey. Results Of the total 5986 participants included in the study, 4472 (74.8%) did not deliver their last child at a health facility. Lack of education for the mother (adjusted odds ratio (OR): 2.04; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.56 to 2.66) and her partner (OR: 1.45; 95% CI 1.14 to 1.84), low household wealth status (OR: 5.20; 95% CI 3.93 to 6.90), and rural residence (OR: 2.83; 95% CI 2.22 to 3.66), were associated with increased likelihood of non-utilisation of health facility for childbirth. Working mothers (OR: 1.55; 95% CI 1.32 to 1.81), who had high parity (OR: 1.78; 95% CI 1.36 to 2.32) and did not attend antenatal care service (OR: 4.68; 95% CI 2.65 to 8.28) were also vulnerable for not delivering at a health facility. Conversely, the prevalence of non-utilisation of health facility for childbirth reduced with increasing number of service components received during antenatal care visits (OR: 0.72; 95% CI 0.64 to 0.80). Conclusions Only a quarter of Timorese women delivered at a health facility. In order to reduce maternal mortality, future interventions should target disadvantaged

  13. Controlling chromium slag pollution utilising scavengers: a case of Shandong Province, China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Changhao; Côté, Raymond P

    2015-04-01

    The problem of chromium slag pollution is a great challenge for China. It is now an urgent task for China to take effective measures to eliminate chromium slag pollution. This article examines the case of the treatment of chromium slag in Shandong Province and explores how chromium slag pollution can be eliminated in Shandong Province. It shows that the chromium slag stockpiled by the chemical plants was successfully utilised by local steel companies, who act as 'scavenger companies'. The driving mechanism, seeking a potential 'scavenger company' within the local region and the role of the local government on the case of Shandong Province are discussed. This article concludes that local steel companies can be utilised to effectively and efficiently treat the chromium slag while benefiting the steel companies. The local governments need to play multiple roles in solving the problem of chromium slag pollution. Seeking and identifying 'scavenger companies' within a region could be an important approach to reducing pollution within the region.

  14. Utilising copper screen-printed electrodes (CuSPE) for the electroanalytical sensing of sulfide.

    PubMed

    Thakur, Bhawana; Bernalte, Elena; Smith, Jamie P; Foster, Christopher W; Linton, Patricia E; Sawant, Shilpa N; Banks, Craig E

    2016-02-21

    A mediatorless sulfide electrochemical sensing platform utilising a novel nanocopper-oxide screen-printed electrodes (CuSPE) is reported for the first time. The state-of-the-art screen-printed electrochemical sensors demonstrate their capability to quantify sulfide within both the presence and absence of an array of interferents with good levels of sensitivity and repeatability. The direct sensing (using linear sweep voltammetry) of sulfide utilising the CuSPEs provides a mediatorless approach for the detection of sulfide, yielding useful analytical signatures that can be successfully quantified. The proposed novel protocol using the CuSPEs is successfully applied to the sensing of sulfide within drinking water exhibiting a high level of recovery.

  15. Pella vilya: Near earth objects—Planetary defence through the regulation of resource utilisation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goh, Gérardine Meishan

    2010-07-01

    Reactions to near earth objects (NEOs) in the past decade have run the gamut from expectations of Armageddon-type scenarios to Eureka moments of revolutionary scientific ideas. Concerns over the potentially devastating effects of an unmitigated collision jostle with forecasts of untold economic returns from the utilisation of NEO resources. Drawing from recent analogies and examples from the field of international environmental law, this paper proposes the development of a legal framework for the regulation of NEO resource utilisation. The proposed legal framework also includes a mechanism to ensure the political will and economic investment necessary for technological advances in planetary defence. By twinning the threats and opportunities presented by NEOs, this paper also analyses the position of theme-specific space law development in the overall legal framework of space exploration and traffic management.

  16. Systeme Optique de Transformations de Coordonnees et Son Utilisation EN Reconnaissance de Formes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asselin, Daniel

    La foramtion optique des transformations de coordonnees (TC) polaire et log-polaire a un grand potentiel en reconnaissance invariante sous rotation et changement d'echelle en temps reel. Cependant, jusqu'ici, la faible qualite des transformations obtenues et le probleme d'enroulement ont empeche toute utilisation pratique. A l'aide d'hologrammes a facettes generes par ordinateur, nous etudierons donc la generation optique de TC de qualite en utilisant des facettes de tailles variables tandis que, en juxtaposant deux TC, nous reduirons de facon appreciable l'effet d'enroulement. Suite a ces ameliorations, nos experiences demontreront la possibilite d'une reconnaissance invariante en rotation et en echelle d'objets simples, seule l'etape de la classification etant supportee numeriquement. Nous etudierons egalement les effets, sur l'onde reconstruite, de la resolution limitee du modulateur supportant l'hologramme, les principales conclusions ayant ete experimentalement confirmees.

  17. Utilisation and cost of professional care and assistance according to disability of patients with multiple sclerosis in Flanders (Belgium)

    PubMed Central

    Carton, H; Loos, R; Pacolet, J; Versieck, K; Vlietinck, R

    1998-01-01

    OBJECTIVES—To assess the utilisation of medical services and social (community) assistance in patients with multiple sclerosis of different disability and to calculate the direct healthcare costs to society.
METHODS—(1) One hundred and eighty four patients with multiple sclerosis were classified into four grades of disability according to a simplified Kurzke disability status scale. (2) Patients were interviewed with a structured questionnaire containing questions on their sociodemographic status, the use of inpatient and outpatient medical services and pharmaceutical products during the previous year, the use of social assistance, and the purchase of prosthetics and charges for house adaptations during the previous five years. (3) Data were also prospectively collected by means of four week diary annotations of all medical and social acts and their duration.
RESULTS—After correction for the disability distribution the yearly costs for the 5500 patients with multiple sclerosis in Flanders was estimated to be ECU 13 106 000 for ambulatory care including rehabilitation and district nursing and ECU 3 234 000 for pharmaceutical products. To these direct medical costs ECU 3 491 000 for social assistance and ECU 4 938 000 for prosthetics and adaptations should be added. The yearly costs for admissions to hospital including permanent residence in an institution and pharmacy was ECU 26 581 000 . Home nursing and long term or permanent residence in an institution of the most severely disabled, 17% of the multiple sclerosis population, are responsible for 50% of the total direct healthcare costs and care for the 6.5% institutionalised patients accounts for 23%. Direct costs for medical care and social assistance for patients with multiple sclerosis, who account for about 0.1% of the total population, amounts to 1% of the total healthcare budget in Flanders.
CONCLUSION—This information on utilisation of medical services and social assistance can be used for good

  18. Utilisation and Off-Label Prescriptions of Respiratory Drugs in Children

    PubMed Central

    Schmiedl, Sven; Fischer, Rainald; Ibáñez, Luisa; Fortuny, Joan; Klungel, Olaf H.; Reynolds, Robert; Gerlach, Roman; Tauscher, Martin; Thürmann, Petra; Hasford, Joerg; Rottenkolber, Marietta

    2014-01-01

    Respiratory drugs are widely used in children to treat labeled and non-labeled indications but only some data are available quantifying comprehensively off-label usage. Thus, we aim to analyse drug utilisation and off-label prescribing of respiratory drugs focusing on age- and indication-related off-label use. Patients aged ≤18 years documented in the Bavarian Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians database (approx. 2 million children) between 2004 and 2008 were included in our study. Annual period prevalence rates (PPRs) per 10,000 children and the proportion of age- and indication-related off-label prescriptions were calculated and stratified by age and gender. Within the study period, highest PPRs were found for the fixed combination of clenbuterol/ambroxol (between 374–575 per 10,000 children) and the inhaled short acting beta-2-agonist salbutamol (between 378–527 per 10,000 children). Highest relative PPR increase was found for oral salbutamol (approx. 39-fold) whereas the most distinct decrease was found for oral long-acting beta-2-agonist clenbuterol (−97%). Compound classes most frequently involved in off-label prescribing were inhaled bronchodilative compounds (91,402; 37.3%) and oral beta-2-agonists (26,850; 22.5%). The highest absolute number of off-label prescriptions were found for inhaled salbutamol (n = 67,084; 42.0%) and oral clenbuterol/ambroxol (fixed combination, n = 18,897; 20.7%). Off-label prescribing due to indication was of much greater relevance than age-related off-label use. Most frequently, bronchodilative compounds were used off-label to treat respiratory tract infections. Highest off-label prescription rates were found in the youngest patients without relevant gender-related differences. Off-label prescribing of respiratory drugs is common especially in young children. Bronchodilative drugs were most frequently used off-label for treating acute bronchitis or upper respiratory tract infections underlining

  19. Utilisation of different phosphorus sources in relation to their fluorine content for broilers and layers.

    PubMed

    Rama Rao, S V; Reddy, V

    2001-07-01

    1. The relative utilisation of different phosphorus sources in relation to their fluorine (F) content was studied in commercial broilers (5 to 40 d) and White Leghorn layers (252 to 364 d). The phosphorus (P) sources tested were bonemeal (BM), low fluorine (LFRP) and high fluorine (HFRP) rock phosphates and a commercial mineral mixture (CMM). The P sources were incorporated in broiler and layer diets by replacing dicalcium phosphate (DCP) on a P basis. 2. The F contents of diets based on BM, LFRP, CMM and HFRP were 53, 365, 622 and 1383 mg/kg in the broiler experiment and 34, 242, 437 and 967 mg/kg in the layer experiment, respectively. F was not detected in DCP based diets. 3. In broilers, body weight gain, food intake, gain: food, P retention and serum inorganic P content on P sources (BM and LFRP) containing F up to 365 mg/kg diet were similar to those on DCP. Body weight gain, food intake, serum calcium and inorganic P contents and retention of P were depressed in groups fed on CMM and HFRP, which may have been due to the toxic effects of F (622 and 1383 mg/kg) present in diets based on these P sources. 4. Bone ash and its P content were not affected by feeding diets containing F up to 1383 mg/kg from various P sources. The amount of F deposited in tibia increased significantly with increases in dietary F concentration. 5. In layers, egg production and food intake were not affected by F up to 437 mg/kg in diets containing BM, LFRP or CMM as the sole source of supplemental P. Egg production and food intake were depressed significantly in layers given the diet containing 967 mg F/kg from HFRP. 6. Egg mass: food, egg weight, shell quality (shell thickness and shell weight) and serum calcium and inorganic P levels were not affected by F up to 967 mg/kg in diets containing different P sources. 7. It may be concluded that the performance of broilers and layers was not affected by feeding various P supplements with dietary levels of F up to 365 and 437 mg

  20. The ingestion of protein with a maltodextrin and fructose beverage on substrate utilisation and exercise performance.

    PubMed

    Tarpey, Michael D; Roberts, Justin D; Kass, Lindsy S; Tarpey, Richard J; Roberts, Michael G

    2013-12-01

    The study investigated the ingestion of maltodextrin, fructose, and protein on exogenous carbohydrate oxidation (CHOEXO) and exercise performance. Seven trained cyclists and (or) triathletes (maximal oxygen consumption, 59.20 ± 9.00 mL · kg(-1) · min(-1)) performed 3 exercise trials that consisted of 150 min of cycling at 50% maximal power output (160 ± 11 W), followed by a 60-km time trial. One of 3 beverages were randomly assigned during each trial and consumed at 15-min intervals: (i) 0.84 g · min(-1) maltodextrin + 0.52 g · min(-1) fructose + 0.34 g · min(-1) protein (MD+F+P); (ii) 1.10 g · min(-1) maltodextrin + 0.60 g · min(-1) fructose (MD+F); or (iii) 1.70 g · min(-1) maltodextrin (MD). CHO(EXO) and fuel utilisation were assessed via measurement of expired air (13)C content and indirect calorimetry, respectively. Mean total CHO oxidation (CHOTOT) rates were 2.35 ± 0.18, 2.76 ± 0.08, and 2.61 ± 0.17 g · min(-1) with MD, MD+F, and MD+F+P, respectively, although not significantly different. Peak CHO(EXO) rates with MD+F were significantly greater by 41.4% (p = 0.001) and 45.4% (p = 0.0001) compared with MD+F+P and MD, respectively (1.57 ± 0.22 g · min(-1), 1.11 ± 0.08 g · min(-1), and 1.08 ± 0.11 g · min(-1), respectively). Performance times were 2.2% and 5.0% faster with MD+F compared with MD+F+P and MD, respectively; however, they were not statistically significant. Ingestion of an MD-fructose-protein commercial sports beverage significantly reduced peak and mean CHO(EXO) rates compared with MD+F, but did not significantly influence CHOTOT. The addition of protein to an MD+F beverage did not enhance performance times.

  1. Effects of demand-side financing on utilisation, experiences and outcomes of maternity care in low- and middle-income countries: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Demand-side financing, where funds for specific services are channelled through, or to, prospective users, is now employed in health and education sectors in many low- and middle-income countries. This systematic review aimed to critically examine the evidence on application of this approach to promote maternal health in these settings. Five modes were considered: unconditional cash transfers, conditional cash transfers, short-term payments to offset costs of accessing maternity services, vouchers for maternity services, and vouchers for merit goods. We sought to assess the effects of these interventions on utilisation of maternity services and on maternal health outcomes and infant health, the situation of underprivileged women and the healthcare system. Methods The protocol aimed for collection and synthesis of a broad range of evidence from quantitative, qualitative and economic studies. Nineteen health and social policy databases, seven unpublished research databases and 27 websites were searched; with additional searches of Indian journals and websites. Studies were included if they examined demand-side financing interventions to increase consumption of services or goods intended to impact on maternal health, and met relevant quality criteria. Quality assessment, data extraction and analysis used Joanna Briggs Institute standardised tools and software. Outcomes of interest included maternal and infant mortality and morbidity, service utilisation, factors required for successful implementation, recipient and provider experiences, ethical issues, and cost-effectiveness. Findings on Effectiveness, Feasibility, Appropriateness and Meaningfulness were presented by narrative synthesis. Results Thirty-three quantitative studies, 46 qualitative studies, and four economic studies from 17 countries met the inclusion criteria. Evidence on unconditional cash transfers was scanty. Other demand-side financing modes were found to increase utilisation of maternal

  2. L’utilisation d’objets comme outils: un développement continu

    PubMed Central

    Kahrs, Björn Alexander; Lockman, Jeffrey J.

    2014-01-01

    Le débat autour des origines développementales de la capacité humaine à utiliser des outils de manière souple reste ouvert. Alors que l’approche dominante se focalise sur un changement qualitatif cognitif vers la fin de la première année, la théorie perception-action fournit des indices importants sur la manière dont les comportements exploratoires plus précoces des nourrissons jettent les bases pour l’émergence de cette capacité. En particulier, nous nous intéressons à la manière dont les tentatives des nourrissons de mettre en rapport les objets et les surfaces leur permettent d’apprendre comment les objets peuvent servir d’extension de la main et fournissent l’occasion d’exercer des actions qui seront recrutées plus tard pour l’utilisation d’outils. Dans ce contexte, nous discutons des études comportementales et cinématiques portant sur la manipulation d’objets, qui montrent que les nourrissons font interagir les objets et les surfaces avec discernement et que leur contrôle de la frappe (banging) augmente au cours de leur première année. En conclusion, une perspective perception-action suggère que l’utilisation d’outils émerge de manière plus continue au cours du développement que ce qui a été traditionnellement envisagé. PMID:24511151

  3. Integrating payload design, planning, and control in the Dutch Utilisation Centre

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grant, T. J.

    1993-03-01

    Spacecraft payload design, experiment planning and scheduling, and payload control are traditionally separate areas of activity. This paper describes the development of a prototype software tool--the Activity Scheduling System (ASS)--which integrates these activity areas. ASS is part of a larger project to build a Dutch Utilisation Centre (DUC), intended eventually to support all space utilization activities in The Netherlands. ASS has been tested on the High Performance Capillary Electrophoresis payload. The paper outlines the integrated preparation and operations concept embodied in ASS. It describes the ASS prototype, including a typical session. The results of testing are summarized. Possible enhancement of ASS, including integration into DUC, is sketched.

  4. Integrating payload design, planning, and control in the Dutch Utilisation Centre

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grant, T. J.

    1993-01-01

    Spacecraft payload design, experiment planning and scheduling, and payload control are traditionally separate areas of activity. This paper describes the development of a prototype software tool--the Activity Scheduling System (ASS)--which integrates these activity areas. ASS is part of a larger project to build a Dutch Utilisation Centre (DUC), intended eventually to support all space utilization activities in The Netherlands. ASS has been tested on the High Performance Capillary Electrophoresis payload. The paper outlines the integrated preparation and operations concept embodied in ASS. It describes the ASS prototype, including a typical session. The results of testing are summarized. Possible enhancement of ASS, including integration into DUC, is sketched.

  5. Nutrient utilisation, growth performance and blood metabolites in Murrah buffalo calves (Bubalus bubalis) divergently selected for residual feed intake.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Vijay K; Kundu, Shivlal S; Prusty, Sonali; Datt, Chander; Kumar, Muneendra

    2016-12-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate differences in efficiency of feed utilisation between buffalo calves with low and high residual feed intake (RFI) by comparing feed intake, nutrient digestibility, growth traits and blood metabolites. Eighteen male Murrah buffalo calves (aged 4-6 months; 70 ± 1.0 kg body weight) were fed ad libitum with a total mixed ration for 120 d. Based on linear regression models involving dry matter intake (DMI), average daily gain (ADG) and mid-test metabolic body size, calves were assigned into low and high RFI groups. The RFI varied from -0.33 to +0.28 kg DM/d with an average RFI of -0.14 and 0.14 kg DM/d in low and high RFI calves, respectively. Calves had a mean DMI of 1.9 and 2.4 kg/d and an ADG of 0.5 and 0.6 kg/d in low and high RFI groups, respectively. Low RFI calves ate 19.0% less DM each day and required significantly less metabolisable energy for maintenance compared with high RFI calves (12.5 vs. 16.7 MJ/d). Nutrient digestibility and nitrogen balance did not differ among low and high RFI calves. In more efficient animals (low RFI calves) higher (p < 0.05) plasma level of growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), triiodothyronine (T3) and lower concentration of thyroxin hormone were detected. No significant differences in levels of insulin, hydroxyproline, plasma and urine creatinine, total protein and albumin between high and low RFI groups were found. Blood metabolites showed significant (p < 0.05) differences at initial and final stages of study in both groups. At final stage of study, RFI showed negative correlations with growth hormone, IGF-1, T3, urine creatinine and albumin. Low RFI buffalo calves are more efficient in feed utilisation and the differences in blood metabolites are probably due to differences in feed intake and body metabolism. PMID:27666680

  6. Effects of Pre-Natal Vitamin D Supplementation with Partial Correction of Vitamin D Deficiency on Early Life Healthcare Utilisation: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Griffiths, Chris; Shaheen, Seif O.; Martineau, Adrian; Cross, Louise; Robinson, Stephen; Warner, John O.; Devine, Angela

    2015-01-01

    Background Some observational studies have suggested that higher prenatal Vitamin D intake may be associated with improved health outcomes in childhood. However there have been mixed results in this area with some negative studies, especially for effects on atopic and respiratory outcomes. We examined the effect of prenatal Vitamin D on healthcare utilisation in the first three years of life. Methods In an ethnically stratified randomised controlled trial conducted at St Mary’s Hospital London, 180 women at 27 weeks gestation were allocated to no Vitamin D, 800 IU ergocalciferol daily until delivery, or a single oral bolus of 200,000 IU cholecalciferol. Participants were randomised in blocks of 15 using computer-generated numbers and investigators were blinded to group assignment. Supplementation increased maternal and cord blood 25(OH) vitamin D concentrations, but levels remained lower than current recommendations. Primary health economic outcome was overall cost of unscheduled healthcare utilisation in the first three years of life as documented in the child’s electronic health record. Secondary outcomes included cost attributable to: primary and secondary healthcare visits, respiratory and atopic complaints, cost in years 1, 2 and 3 of life and cost and frequency of prescribed medication. All costs were calculated as pounds sterling. Differences between groups were analysed using unpaired t-test or Mann-Whitney U test, and analysis of variance for adjusted analyses. Results We assessed 99/180 (55%) complete electronic health records, control (n = 31), daily (n = 36) and bolus (n = 32). We found no difference in total healthcare utilisation costs between the control and daily (mean difference in costs in pounds sterling 1.02, 95%CI -1.60, 1.65; adjusted 1.07, 95%CI -1.62, 1.86) or control and bolus groups (mean difference -1.58, 95%CI -2.63, 1.06; adjusted –1.40, 95%CI -2.45, 1.24). There were no adverse effects of supplementation reported during the trial

  7. Synthesis and utilisation of folate by yoghurt starter cultures and probiotic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Crittenden, R G; Martinez, N R; Playne, M J

    2003-02-15

    Thirty-two bacterial isolates from species commonly used in yoghurts and fermented milks were examined for their ability to synthesise or utilise folate during fermentation of skim milk. The organisms examined included the traditional yoghurt starter cultures, Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus, and probiotic lactobacilli, bifidobacteria, and Enterococcus faecium. Folate was synthesised by S. thermophilus, bifidobacteria, and E. faecium. S. thermophilus was the dominant producer, elevating folate levels in skim milk from 11.5 ng g(-1) to between 40 and 50 ng g(-1). Generally, lactobacilli depleted the available folate in the skim milk. Fermentations with mixed cultures showed that folate production and utilisation by the cultures was additive. Fermentations using a combination of Bifidobacterium animalis and S. thermophilus resulted in a six-fold increase in folate concentration. Although increased folate levels in yoghurts and fermented milks are possible through judicious selection of inoculum species, the folate levels remain relatively low in terms of recommended daily allowance. PMID:12423923

  8. Health insurance and healthcare utilisation for Shenzhen residents: a tale of registrants and migrants?

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Shenzhen’s rapid growth and urbanisation has attracted a large, mobile, migrant working population. This article explores health protection through the means of social health insurance between migrants and registrants and their point of access to healthcare. Methods A cross-sectional questionnaire survey was conducted in Shenzhen, with a random sample of 793 registered and 750 non-registered residents. Chi-square test and multivariate logistic regression were applied to analyse the association between health insurance coverage with Hukou registration status and healthcare utilisation. Results Amongst 1543 respondents, 43.1% of non-registered residents were uninsured. Being non-registered strongly predicted for no insurance (OR = 5.00; CI 3.53,7.07) and have purchased additional/ private insurance (OR = 2.99; CI 1.66,5.37). Migrants who self-reported chronic health conditions were also more likely to utilise health services in general (OR = 2.77; CI 1.18,6.52). Conclusions Inadequate health insurance coverage for migrants as observed in Shenzhen remains a challenge for the Chinese health reform. Our results suggest that the current insurance system must seek to include migrants in order to achieve universal coverage and improved health protection for its population. PMID:23061720

  9. Cumulative metal leaching from utilisation of secondary building materials in river engineering.

    PubMed

    Leuven, R S E W; Willems, F H G

    2004-01-01

    The present paper estimates the utilisation of bulky wastes (minestone, steel slag, phosphorus slag and demolition waste) in hydraulic engineering structures in Dutch parts of the rivers Rhine, Meuse and Scheldt over the period 1980-2025. Although they offer several economic, technical and environmental benefits, these secondary building materials contain various metals that may leach into river water. A leaching model was used to predict annual emissions of arsenic, cadmium, copper, chromium, lead, mercury, nickel and zinc. Under the current utilisation and model assumptions, the contribution of secondary building materials to metal pollution in Dutch surface waters is expected to be relatively low compared to other sources (less than 0.1% and 0.2% in the years 2000 and 2025, respectively). However, continued and widespread large-scale applications of secondary building materials will increase pollutant leaching and may require further cuts to be made in emissions from other sources to meet emission reduction targets and water quality standards. It is recommended to validate available leaching models under various field conditions. Complete registration of secondary building materials will be required to improve input data for leaching models.

  10. Utilisation of Mucin Glycans by the Human Gut Symbiont Ruminococcus gnavus Is Strain-Dependent

    PubMed Central

    Crost, Emmanuelle H.; Tailford, Louise E.; Le Gall, Gwenaelle; Fons, Michel; Henrissat, Bernard; Juge, Nathalie

    2013-01-01

    Commensal bacteria often have an especially rich source of glycan-degrading enzymes which allow them to utilize undigested carbohydrates from the food or the host. The species Ruminococcus gnavus is present in the digestive tract of ≥90% of humans and has been implicated in gut-related diseases such as inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). Here we analysed the ability of two R. gnavus human strains, E1 and ATCC 29149, to utilize host glycans. We showed that although both strains could assimilate mucin monosaccharides, only R. gnavus ATCC 29149 was able to grow on mucin as a sole carbon source. Comparative genomic analysis of the two R. gnavus strains highlighted potential clusters and glycoside hydrolases (GHs) responsible for the breakdown and utilization of mucin-derived glycans. Transcriptomic and functional activity assays confirmed the importance of specific GH33 sialidase, and GH29 and GH95 fucosidases in the mucin utilisation pathway. Notably, we uncovered a novel pathway by which R. gnavus ATCC 29149 utilises sialic acid from sialylated substrates. Our results also demonstrated the ability of R. gnavus ATCC 29149 to produce propanol and propionate as the end products of metabolism when grown on mucin and fucosylated glycans. These new findings provide molecular insights into the strain-specificity of R. gnavus adaptation to the gut environment advancing our understanding of the role of gut commensals in health and disease. PMID:24204617

  11. What accounts for the regional differences in the utilisation of hospitals in Germany?

    PubMed

    Augurzky, Boris; Kopetsch, Thomas; Schmitz, Hendrik

    2013-08-01

    There are huge regional variations in the utilisation of hospital services in Germany. In 2007 and 2008 the states of Hamburg and Baden-Württemberg had on average just under 38 % fewer hospitalisations per capita than Saxony-Anhalt. We use data from the DRG statistics aggregated at the county level in combination with numerous other data sources (e.g. INKAR Database, accounting data from the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV), Federal Medical Registry, Germany Hospital Directory, population structure per county) to establish the proportion of the observed regional differences that can be explained at county and state levels. Overall we are able to account for 73 % of the variation at state level in terms of observable factors. By far the most important reason for the regional variation in the utilisation of in-patient services is differences in medical needs. Differences in the supply of medical services and the substitutability of outpatient and inpatient treatment are also relevant, but to a lesser extent.

  12. Wildlife resource utilisation at Moremi Game Reserve and Khwai community area in the Okavango Delta, Botswana.

    PubMed

    Mbaiwa, Joseph E

    2005-10-01

    This paper uses the concept of sustainable development to examine the utilisation of wildlife resources at Moremi Game Reserve (MGR) and Khwai community area (NG 18/19) in the Okavango Delta, Botswana. Using both secondary and primary data sources, results show that the establishment of MGR in 1963 led to the displacement of Khwai residents from their land; affected Basarwa's hunting and gathering economy; marked the beginning of resource conflicts between Khwai residents and wildlife managers; and, led to the development of negative attitudes of Khwai residents towards wildlife conservation. Since the late 1980s, a predominantly foreign owned tourism industry developed in and around MGR, however, Khwai residents derive insignificant benefits from it and hence resource conflicts increased. In an attempt to address problems of resource conflicts and promote sustainable wildlife utilisation, the Botswana Government adopted the Community-Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) programme, which started operating at Khwai village in 2000. The CBNRM programme promotes local participation in natural resource management and rural development through tourism. It is beginning to have benefits to Khwai residents such as income generation, employment opportunities and local participation in wildlife management. These benefits from CBNRM are thus having an impact in the development of positive attitudes of Khwai residents towards wildlife conservation and tourism development. This paper argues that if extended to MGR, CBNRM has the potential of minimising wildlife conflicts between Khwai residents and the wildlife-tourism sectors. This approach may in the process promote the sustainable wildlife use in and around MGR.

  13. Environmental-benign utilisation of fly ash as low-cost adsorbents.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shaobin; Wu, Hongwei

    2006-08-25

    Fly ash is a waste substance from thermal power plants, steel mills, etc. that is found in abundance in the world. In recent years, utilisation of fly ash has gained much attention in public and industry, which will help reduce the environmental burden and enhance economic benefit. In this paper, the technical feasibility of utilisation of fly ash as a low-cost adsorbent for various adsorption processes for removal of pollutants in air and water systems has been reviewed. Instead of using commercial activated carbon or zeolites, a lot of researches have been conducted using fly ash for adsorption of NO(x), SO(x), organic compounds, and mercury in air, and cations, anions, dyes and other organic matters in waters. It is recognised that fly ash is a promising adsorbent for removal of various pollutants. Chemical treatment of fly ash will make conversion of fly ash into a more efficient adsorbent for gas and water cleaning. Investigations also revealed that unburned carbon component in fly ash plays an important role in adsorption capacity. Directions for future research are also discussed.

  14. The utilisation of two detectors for the determination of water in honey using headspace gas chromatography.

    PubMed

    Frink, Lillian A; Armstrong, Daniel W

    2016-08-15

    A headspace gas chromatography (HSGC) method was developed for the determination of water content in honey. This method was shown to work with five different honey varieties which had a range of water from 14-16%. It also utilised two different detectors, the thermal conductivity detector (TCD) and the barrier discharge ionisation detector (BID). This method needs no heating pretreatment step as in the current leading method, (i.e. the measurement of refractive index). The solvent-free procedure negates the possibility of solvent-compound interactions as well as solubility limitations, as is common with Karl Fischer titrations. It was also apparent that the classic loss on drying method consistently and substantially produced results that were lower than the correct values. This approach is shown to be rapid, with an analysis time of 4 min when using the TCD detector and under 3 min when utilising the BID detector. HSGC is feasible for the determination of water due to the new PEG-linked geminal dicationic ionic-liquid-coated GC capillary column. In addition it provides accurate and precise determinations of the water content in honey. When using the sensitive BID detector, other trace volatile compounds are observed as well. PMID:27006209

  15. Does spatial location matter? Traditional therapy utilisation among the general population in a Ghanaian rural and urban setting.

    PubMed

    Gyasi, Razak Mohammed; Asante, Felix; Segbefia, Alexander Yao; Abass, Kabila; Mensah, Charlotte Monica; Siaw, Lawrencia Pokuah; Eshun, Gabriel; Adjei, Prince Osei-Wusu

    2015-06-01

    Despite the recognition for rising consumption rate of traditional medicine (TRM) in health and spatio-medical literature in the global scale, the impact of location in traditional therapy use has been explored least in Ghana. This paper analysed the role of spatial variation in TRM use in Kumasi Metropolis and Sekyere South District of Ashanti Region, Ghana. A retrospective cross-sectional and place-based survey was conducted in a representative sample (N=324) selected through systematic random sampling technique. Structured interviewer-administered questionnaires were espoused as the main research instruments. Data were analysed with Pearson's Chi-square and Fisher's exact tests from the Predictive Analytics Software (PASW) version 17.0. The study found that over 86% reported TRM use. Whilst majority (59.1%) of the respondents had used TRM two or more times within the last 12 months, biologically-based therapies and energy healing were common forms of TRM accessed. Although, the use of TRM did not vary (p>0.05), knowledge about TRM, modalities of TRM and the sources of TRM differed significantly across geographically demarcated rural and urban splits (p<0.005). The study advances our understanding of the spatial dimensions as regards TRM utilisation.

  16. Enterovirus71 (EV71) Utilise Host microRNAs to Mediate Host Immune System Enhancing Survival during Infection

    PubMed Central

    Lui, Yan Long Edmund; Tan, Tuan Lin; Woo, Wee Hong; Timms, Peter; Hafner, Louise Marie; Tan, Kian Hwa; Tan, Eng Lee

    2014-01-01

    Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) is a self-limiting viral disease that mainly affects infants and children. In contrast with other HFMD causing enteroviruses, Enterovirus71 (EV71) has commonly been associated with severe clinical manifestation leading to death. Currently, due to a lack in understanding of EV71 pathogenesis, there is no antiviral therapeutics for the treatment of HFMD patients. Therefore the need to better understand the mechanism of EV71 pathogenesis is warranted. We have previously reported a human colorectal adenocarcinoma cell line (HT29) based model to study the pathogenesis of EV71. Using this system, we showed that knockdown of DGCR8, an essential cofactor for microRNAs biogenesis resulted in a reduction of EV71 replication. We also demonstrated that there are miRNAs changes during EV71 pathogenesis and EV71 utilise host miRNAs to attenuate antiviral pathways during infection. Together, data from this study provide critical information on the role of miRNAs during EV71 infection. PMID:25047717

  17. Enterovirus71 (EV71) utilise host microRNAs to mediate host immune system enhancing survival during infection.

    PubMed

    Lui, Yan Long Edmund; Tan, Tuan Lin; Woo, Wee Hong; Timms, Peter; Hafner, Louise Marie; Tan, Kian Hwa; Tan, Eng Lee

    2014-01-01

    Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) is a self-limiting viral disease that mainly affects infants and children. In contrast with other HFMD causing enteroviruses, Enterovirus71 (EV71) has commonly been associated with severe clinical manifestation leading to death. Currently, due to a lack in understanding of EV71 pathogenesis, there is no antiviral therapeutics for the treatment of HFMD patients. Therefore the need to better understand the mechanism of EV71 pathogenesis is warranted. We have previously reported a human colorectal adenocarcinoma cell line (HT29) based model to study the pathogenesis of EV71. Using this system, we showed that knockdown of DGCR8, an essential cofactor for microRNAs biogenesis resulted in a reduction of EV71 replication. We also demonstrated that there are miRNAs changes during EV71 pathogenesis and EV71 utilise host miRNAs to attenuate antiviral pathways during infection. Together, data from this study provide critical information on the role of miRNAs during EV71 infection.

  18. Are racist attitudes related to experiences of racial discrimination? Within sample testing utilising nationally representative survey data.

    PubMed

    Habtegiorgis, Amanuel E; Paradies, Yin C; Dunn, Kevin M

    2014-09-01

    Although the relationship between an individual's racist attitudes and discriminatory behaviours has been widely studied, the association between racist attitudes among perpetrators and experiences of racism among targets has been under-examined. Based on data from the 2001-8 Australian Challenging Racism Project survey, this paper details a novel method to investigate the link between racist attitudes and experiences of discrimination utilising two separate models linked by nomination of cultural or ethnic groups who do not fit into Australian society (i.e., out-groups). Those identified as out-groups were more likely to report experiences of discrimination than those who were not nominated as out-groups. Overall, out-group nomination by those with racist attitudes strongly predict experiences of discrimination among these same target out-groups, OR=2.2, F(6, 12,348)=78.61, p<.001. Racist attitudes are related to racist behaviours among perpetrators that are, in turn, related to experiences of racial discrimination among targets. This study demonstrates that attitudes not only affect majority group behaviour but also drive the resulting experiences of discrimination for minority group members.

  19. How to revise and utilise the cephalogram for craniofacial dysostosis--modification of the porion and the McNamara line.

    PubMed

    Tamada, Ikkei; Nakajima, Hideo; Ogata, Hisao; Nakajima, Tatsuo; Sakamoto, Teruo; Ishii, Takenobu

    2010-09-01

    McNamara line analysis is often utilised in orthognathic surgery and is particularly useful in that it can easily express the extent of maxillo-mandibular deformity quantitatively. However, in craniofacial dysostosis (CFD), the location of the porion (PR) is sometimes displaced inferiorly. The McNamara line depends on the Frankfurt horizontal plane (FH plane), and hence, its deviation is often extremely distorted in CFD. The objective of this study was to enable more correct reflection of deformities of CFD patients on lateral cephalogram analysis. The lateral cephalograms of 152 Asian individuals were involved. angle basion(BA).orbitale(Or).PR, angle BA. nasion(NA).PR, and the distance from BA to PR on the BA-NA plane were measured and each standard range was established. Using these ranges, modified PR (mPR) is supposed to lie within a fairly small area. Second, we utilised mPR in the practice of McNamara line analysis in CFD patients. In both cases in the present study, it was confirmed that modified McNamara line analysis can express the deformities more precisely than conventinal analysis, as far as the maxillo-mandibular relationship is concerned. However, particularly in Case 2, both the cranio-maxillary and cranio-mandibular relationships were not entirely consistent with the lateral profile appearance even on modified McNamara line analysis.

  20. 'Sometimes they fail to keep their faith in us': community health worker perceptions of structural barriers to quality of care and community utilisation of services in Bangladesh.

    PubMed

    Puett, Chloe; Alderman, Harold; Sadler, Kate; Coates, Jennifer

    2015-10-01

    Community health workers (CHWs) have strong potential to extend health and nutrition services to underserved populations. However, CHWs face complex challenges when working within weak health systems and among communities with limited abilities to access and utilise CHW services. It is crucial to understand these challenges to improve programme support mechanisms. This study describes the results of qualitative investigations into CHW perceptions of barriers to quality of care among two groups of workers implementing community case management of acute respiratory infection, diarrhoea and severe acute malnutrition in southern Bangladesh. We explored systemic barriers to service delivery, pertaining to communities and health systems, which limited the usefulness and effectiveness of CHW services. Focus group discussions (n = 10) were conducted in March 2010. Discussions were analysed for themes related to CHWs' work challenges. Findings highlight several perceived barriers to effective service provision, including community poverty constraining uptake of recommended practices, irregular supplies of medicine from the health facility and poor quality of care for CHW referrals sent there. This study further documents interactions between demand-side and supply-side constraints including the influence of health system resource constraints on community trust in CHW services, and the influence of community resource constraints on the utilisation and effectiveness of CHW services. By documenting service delivery challenges from the perspective of the frontline workers themselves, this article contributes evidence to help identify appropriate support mechanisms for these workers, in order to develop scalable and sustainable CHW programmes in countries with under-resourced public health care infrastructure.

  1. The significance of the host inflammatory response on the therapeutic efficacy of cell therapies utilising human adult stem cells

    SciTech Connect

    Navarro, Melba; Pu, Fanrong; Hunt, John A.

    2012-02-15

    Controlling the fate of implanted hMSCs is one of the major drawbacks to be overcome to realize tissue engineering strategies. In particular, the effect of the inflammatory environment on hMSCs behaviour is poorly understood. Studying and mimicking the inflammatory process in vitro is a very complex and challenging task that involves multiple variables. This research addressed the questions using in vitro co-cultures of primary derived hMSCs together with human peripheral blood mononucleated cells (PBMCs); the latter are key agents in the inflammatory process. This work explored the in vitro phenotypic changes of hMSCs in co-culture direct contact with monocytes and lymphocytes isolated from blood using both basal and osteogenic medium. Our findings indicated that hMSCs maintained their undifferentiated phenotype and pluripotency despite the contact with PBMCs. Moreover, hMSCs demonstrated increased proliferation and were able to differentiate specifically down the osteogenic lineage pathway. Providing significant crucial evidence to support the hypothesis that inflammation and host defence mechanisms could be utilised rather than avoided and combated to provide for the successful therapeutic application of stem cell therapies.

  2. Detection of Sialic Acid-Utilising Bacteria in a Caecal Community Batch Culture Using RNA-Based Stable Isotope Probing

    PubMed Central

    Young, Wayne; Egert, Markus; Bassett, Shalome A.; Bibiloni, Rodrigo

    2015-01-01

    Sialic acids are monosaccharides typically found on cell surfaces and attached to soluble proteins, or as essential components of ganglioside structures that play a critical role in brain development and neural transmission. Human milk also contains sialic acid conjugated to oligosaccharides, glycolipids, and glycoproteins. These nutrients can reach the large bowel where they may be metabolised by the microbiota. However, little is known about the members of the microbiota involved in this function. To identify intestinal bacteria that utilise sialic acid within a complex intestinal community, we cultured the caecal microbiota from piglets in the presence of 13C-labelled sialic acid. Using RNA-based stable isotope probing, we identified bacteria that consumed 13C-sialic acid by fractionating total RNA in isopycnic buoyant density gradients followed by 16S rRNA gene analysis. Addition of sialic acid caused significant microbial community changes. A relative rise in Prevotella and Lactobacillus species was accompanied by a corresponding reduction in the genera Escherichia/Shigella, Ruminococcus and Eubacterium. Inspection of isotopically labelled RNA sequences suggests that the labelled sialic acid was consumed by a wide range of bacteria. However, species affiliated with the genus Prevotella were clearly identified as the most prolific users, as solely their RNA showed significantly higher relative shares among the most labelled RNA species. Given the relevance of sialic acid in nutrition, this study contributes to a better understanding of their microbial transformation in the intestinal tract with potential implications for human health. PMID:25816158

  3. Health care utilisation and attitudes towards health care in subjects reporting environmental annoyance from electricity and chemicals.

    PubMed

    Eek, Frida; Merlo, Juan; Gerdtham, Ulf; Lithman, Thor

    2009-01-01

    Environmentally intolerant persons report decreased self-rated health and daily functioning. However, it remains unclear whether this condition also results in increased health care costs. The aim of this study was to describe the health care consumption and attitudes towards health care in subjects presenting subjective environmental annoyance in relation to the general population, as well as to a group with a well-known disorder as treated hypertension (HT). Methods. Postal questionnaire (n = 13 604) and record linkage with population-based register on health care costs. Results. Despite significantly lower subjective well being and health than both the general population and HT group, the environmentally annoyed subjects had lower health care costs than the hypertension group. In contrast to the hypertension group, the environmentally annoyed subjects expressed more negative attitudes toward the health care than the general population. Conclusions. Despite their impaired subjective health and functional capacity, health care utilisation costs were not much increased for the environmentally annoyed group. This may partly depend on negative attitudes towards the health care in this group.

  4. Detection of sialic acid-utilising bacteria in a caecal community batch culture using RNA-based stable isotope probing.

    PubMed

    Young, Wayne; Egert, Markus; Bassett, Shalome A; Bibiloni, Rodrigo

    2015-03-25

    Sialic acids are monosaccharides typically found on cell surfaces and attached to soluble proteins, or as essential components of ganglioside structures that play a critical role in brain development and neural transmission. Human milk also contains sialic acid conjugated to oligosaccharides, glycolipids, and glycoproteins. These nutrients can reach the large bowel where they may be metabolised by the microbiota. However, little is known about the members of the microbiota involved in this function. To identify intestinal bacteria that utilise sialic acid within a complex intestinal community, we cultured the caecal microbiota from piglets in the presence of 13C-labelled sialic acid. Using RNA-based stable isotope probing, we identified bacteria that consumed 13C-sialic acid by fractionating total RNA in isopycnic buoyant density gradients followed by 16S rRNA gene analysis. Addition of sialic acid caused significant microbial community changes. A relative rise in Prevotella and Lactobacillus species was accompanied by a corresponding reduction in the genera Escherichia/Shigella, Ruminococcus and Eubacterium. Inspection of isotopically labelled RNA sequences suggests that the labelled sialic acid was consumed by a wide range of bacteria. However, species affiliated with the genus Prevotella were clearly identified as the most prolific users, as solely their RNA showed significantly higher relative shares among the most labelled RNA species. Given the relevance of sialic acid in nutrition, this study contributes to a better understanding of their microbial transformation in the intestinal tract with potential implications for human health.

  5. A systematic review of the predictors of health service utilisation by adults with mental disorders in the UK

    PubMed Central

    Twomey, Conal D; Baldwin, David S; Hopfe, Maren; Cieza, Alarcos

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To identify variables that predict health service utilisation (HSU) by adults with mental disorders in the UK, and to determine the evidence level for these predictors. Design A narrative synthesis of peer-reviewed studies published after the year 2000. The search was conducted using four databases (ie, PsycINFO, CINAHL Plus with full text, MEDLINE and EMBASE) and completed on 25 March 2014. Setting The majority of included studies were set in health services across primary, secondary, specialist and inpatient care. Some studies used data from household and postal surveys. Participants Included were UK-based studies that predicted HSU by adults with mental disorders. Participants had a range of mental disorders including psychotic disorders, personality disorders, depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders and dementia. Primary outcome A wide range of HSU outcomes were examined, including general practitioner (GP) contacts, medication usage, psychiatrist contacts, psychotherapy attendances, inpatient days, accident and emergency admissions and ‘total HSU’. Results Taking into account study quality, 28 studies identified a range of variables with good preliminary evidence supporting their ability to predict HSU. Of these variables, comorbidity, personality disorder, age (heterogeneous age ranges), neurotic symptoms, female gender, a marital status of divorced, separated or widowed, non-white ethnicity, high previous HSU and activities of daily living, were associated with increased HSU. Moreover, good preliminary evidence was found for associations of accessing a primary care psychological treatment service and medication use with decreased HSU. Conclusions The findings can inform decisions about which variables might be used to derive mental health clusters in ‘payment by results’ systems in the UK. The findings also support the need to investigate whether combining broad diagnoses with care pathways is an effective method for mental health

  6. Access and utilisation of healthcare services in rural Tanzania: A comparison of public and non-public facilities using quality, equity, and trust dimensions.

    PubMed

    Shayo, Elizabeth H; Senkoro, Kesheni P; Momburi, Romanus; Olsen, Øystein E; Byskov, Jens; Makundi, Emmanuel A; Kamuzora, Peter; Mboera, Leonard E G

    2016-01-01

    This study compared the access and utilisation of health services in public and non-public health facilities in terms of quality, equity and trust in the Mbarali district, Tanzania. Interviews, focus group discussions, and informal discussions were used to generate data. Of the 1836 respondents, 1157 and 679 respondents sought healthcare services on their last visit at public or non-public health facilities, respectively. While 45.5% rated the quality of services to be good in both types of facilities, reported medicine shortages were more pronounced among those who visited public rather than non-public health facilities (OR = 1.7, 95% CI 1.4, 2.1). Respondents who visited public facilities were 4.9 times less likely than those who visited non-public facilities to emphasise the influence of cost in accessing and utilising health care (OR = 4.9, CI 3.9-6.1). A significant difference was also found in the provider-client relationship satisfaction level between non-public (89.1%) and public facilities (74.7%) (OR = 2.8, CI: 1.5-5.0), indicating a level of lower trust in the later. Revised strategies are needed to ensure availability of medicines in public facilities, which are used by the majority of the population, while strengthening private-public partnerships to harmonise healthcare costs.

  7. The Effect of Acute Rhodiola rosea Ingestion on Exercise Heart Rate, Substrate Utilisation, Mood State, and Perceptions of Exertion, Arousal, and Pleasure/Displeasure in Active Men

    PubMed Central

    Duncan, Michael J.; Clarke, Neil D.

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine the effect of acute Rhodiola rosea (R. rosea) ingestion on substrate utilisation, mood state, RPE, and exercise affect. Ten males (mean age ± S.D. = 26 ± 6 years) completed two 30-minute cycling trials at an intensity of 70% of V˙O2max⁡ following ingestion of either 3 mg·kg−1 body mass of R. rosea or placebo using a double-blind, crossover design. During exercise, heart rate and RPE were recorded. Participants completed measures of mood state and exercise affect before and after exercise. Expired air samples were taken during exercise to determine substrate utilisation. Repeated measures analysis of variance indicated that RPE was significantly lower at 30 minutes into exercise versus placebo (P = 0.003). Perceptions of arousal (P = 0.05) and pleasure were significantly higher after exercise with R. rosea compared to placebo (P = 0.003). Mood state scores for vigor were also higher in R. rosea condition compared to placebo (P = 0.008). There were no significant differences in energy expenditure, carbohydrate, or fat oxidation between conditions (P > 0.05). Ingestion of R. rosea favourably influenced RPE and exercise affect without changes in energy expenditure or substrate utilization during 30-minute submaximal cycling performance. PMID:26464892

  8. The possibilities of utilisation of heat from Tattapani Geothermal field, India

    SciTech Connect

    Sarolkar, P.B.; Pitale, U.L.

    1996-12-31

    The Tattapani Geothermal field produces + 1800 1pm thermal water of 100{degrees}C from five production wells. The hot water production can sustain electricity production of 300 kWe by using a binary cycle power plant. The heat energy of effluent water from power plant can be utilized for direct heat utilization on horticulture, aquaculture, cold storage, silviculture etc; to augment the economics of the power plant be spot can be developed as a centre for tourist attraction by constructing botanical park, greenhouse, geyser show and crocodile farm. The direct heat utilization shemes can be planned in cascading order to achieve maximum utility of thermal water. Additional deep drilling is essential for optimum commercial utilization of the Geothermal energy. The direct heat utilisation shemes along with binary cycle power plant may help in development of the geothermal energy and boosting the economy of this region.

  9. Coupled oscillators utilised as gait rhythm generators of a two-legged walking machine.

    PubMed

    Zielińska, T

    1996-03-01

    The gait of current two-legged walking machines differs from that of humans, although the kinematic structures of these machines' legs frequently imitate human limbs. This paper presents a method of generating the trajectories of hip and knee joint angles resulting in a gait pattern similar to that of a human. For this purpose the solutions of coupled van der Pol oscillator equations are utilised. There is much evidence that these equations can be treated as a good model of the central pattern generator generating functional (also locomotional) rhythms in living creatures. The oscillator equations are solved by numerical integration. The method of changing the type of gait by changing appropriate parameter values in the oscillator equations is presented (change of velocity and trajectory of leg-ends). The results obtained enable enhanced control of two-legged walking systems by including gait pattern generators which will assume a similar role to that of biological generators.

  10. Inter-comparison of safety culture within selected practices in Ghana utilising ionising radiation.

    PubMed

    Faanu, A; Schandorf, C; Darko, E O; Boadu, M; Emi-Reynolds, G; Awudu, A R; Gyekye, P K; Kpeglo, D O

    2010-12-01

    The safety culture of selected practices and facilities in Ghana utilising radiation sources or radiation emitting devices has been assessed using a performance indicator, which provided status information on management and operating staff commitment to safety. The questionnaire was based on the following broad areas: general safety considerations, safety policy at the facility level, safety practices at the facility level, definition of responsibility, staff training, safety of the physical structure of the facility and the emergency plans. The analysis showed that the percentage levels of commitment to safety for the respective practices are as follows: conventional radiography, 23.3-90.0%; research reactor, 73.3%; gamma irradiation facility, 53.3%; radiotherapy, 76.7%; X-ray scanner, 80.0%; gamma scanner, 76.7%; industrial radiography 86.7% and nuclear density practice, 78%. None of the practices or facilities was able to satisfy all the requirements that will ensure a 100% level of safety culture.

  11. Utilisation of chemical signals by inquiline wasps in entering their host figs.

    PubMed

    Gu, Ding; Yang, Da-Rong

    2013-10-01

    The fig tree, Ficus curtipes, hosts an obligate pollinating wasp, an undescribed Eupristina sp., but can also be pollinated by two inquiline (living in the burrow, nest, gall, or other habitation of another animal) wasps, Diaziella yangi and an undescribed Lipothymus sp. The two inquilines are unable to independently induce galls and depend on the galls induced by the obligate pollinator for reproduction and, therefore, normally enter receptive F. curtipes figs colonised by the obligate pollinators. However, sometimes the inquilines also enter figs that are not colonised by the pollinators, despite consequent reproductive failure. It is still unknown which signal(s) the inquilines use in entering the colonised and non-colonised figs. We conducted behavioural experiments to investigate several possible signals utilised by the inquilines in entering their host receptive figs. Our investigation showed that both inquiline species enter the receptive F. curtipes figs in response to the body odours of the obligate wasps and one of the main compounds emitted by the figs, 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one. The compound was not found in the pollinator body odours, suggesting that the two inquiline wasps can utilise two signals to enter their host figs, which is significant for the evolution of the fig-fig wasp system. These inquilines could evolve to become mutualists of the figs if they evolve the ability to independently gall fig flowers; there is, however, another possibility that a monoecious Ficus species hosting such inquilines may evolve into a dioecious one if these inquilines cannot evolve the above-mentioned ability. Additionally, this finding provides evidence for the evolution of chemical communication between plants and insects.

  12. Utilising Six Sigma for Improving Pass Percentage of Students: A Technical Institute Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaushik, Prabhakar; Khanduja, Dinesh

    2010-01-01

    Service sector accounts for a substantial share in Indian economy and among the service industries, education sector is emerging as a major commercial activity in the nation. Globalization, growing competition among institutions, emergence of new technologies, changing socio-economic profiles of nations and knowledge driven economies have created…

  13. Utilising Social Networking Sites to Improve Writing: A Case Study with Chinese Students in Malaysia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vikneswaran, Thulasi; Krish, Pramela

    2016-01-01

    With the advancement of technology, writing in English is no longer confined to the classroom as nowadays students are exposed to various forms of writing on the Internet. Specifically with Generation Y in mind, online writing is a new method that needs to be implemented to enhance Malaysian students' writing skills. This article aims at…

  14. Experiences in the Dissemination and Utilisation of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Research Findings from Three Southern African Universities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaino, Luckson M.; Mtetwa, David; Kasanda, Choshi

    2014-01-01

    The dissemination and utilisation of research knowledge produced at universities has been debated in recent times. Recent changes and developments at universities suggest an entrepreneurial model of academic research production in which universities have the responsibility not only to carry out research and teaching but also to disseminate…

  15. Effect of gas composition and gas utilisation on the dynamic response of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weydahl, Helge; Møller-Holst, Steffen; Børresen, Børre

    The transient response of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) was measured for various cathode gas compositions and gas utilisations (fraction of supplied reactant gas which is consumed in the fuel cell reaction). For a PEMFC operated on pure hydrogen and oxygen, the cell voltage response to current steps was fast, with response times in the range 0.01-1 s, depending on the applied current. For a PEMFC supplied with air as cathode gas, an additional relaxation process related to oxygen transport caused a slower response (approximately 0.1-2 s depending on the applied current). Response curves up to approximately 0.01 s were apparently unaffected by gas composition and utilisation and were most likely dominated by capacitive discharge of the double layer and reaction with surplus oxygen residing in the cathode. The utilisation of hydrogen had only a minor effect on the response curves, while the utilisation of air severely influenced the PEMFC dynamics. Results suggested that air flow rates should be high to obtain rapid PEMFC response.

  16. Economic Activities, Illness Pattern and Utilisation of Health Care Facilities in the Rural Population of Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    ABSTRACT Background The study was undertaken among the rural and black communities of the Uthungulu health district of the KwaZulu-Natal province, South Africa. Method A cross-sectional community-based descriptive study was conducted. A multi-stage sampling strategy was adopted to obtain a representative sample of the communities. Results The mean age of the population was 27 years and majority was female (54%). Among the adult population only 30% were educated, 19% were engaged in some form of economic activities while 9% were in the formal employment sector. The average monthly income per household was R1 301 (95% CI, R1 283; R1 308). The illnesses were reported by 27% of the total population over a period of one month. Notably higher rates of female individuals (29%) were sick compared to males (24%, p < 0.001). The rates of illnesses among adult females (39%) were also significantly higher than among males (31%, p < 0.009). Most of them (69%) attended primary health care (PHC) clinics for medical services, while 67% reported chronic conditions. Age (OR = 1.4), gender (OR = 0.711), education (OR = 0.64) and economic activities (OR = 1.9) were found to be associated with being ill or not. Conclusion The rural black communities are underdeveloped and deprived, which results in higher prevalence of illnesses; however, the utilisation of PHC facilities is comparatively higher than in the rest of the province and other parts of the country. Interventions to improve community health care services among the deprived population should be focused through public health strategies such as all-encompassing PHC that includes health promotion, education and basic essential amenities.

  17. Atherogenic, fibrotic and glucose utilising actions of glucokinase activators on vascular endothelium and smooth muscle

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Pharmaceutical interventions for diabetes aim to control glycaemia and to prevent the development of complications, such as cardiovascular diseases. Some anti-hyperglycaemic drugs have been found to have adverse cardiovascular effects in their own right, limiting their therapeutic role. Glucokinase activity in the pancreas is critical in enhancing insulin release in response to hyperglycaemia. Glucokinase activators (GKAs) are novel agents for diabetes which act by enhancing the formation of glucose-6-phosphate leading to increased insulin production and subsequent suppression of blood glucose. Little, however, is known about the direct effects of GKAs on cardiovascular cells. Methods The effect of the GKAs RO28-1675 and Compound A on glucose utilisation in bovine aortic endothelial cells (BAEC) and rat MIN6 was observed by culturing the cells at high and low glucose concentration in the presence and absence of the GKAs and measuring glucose consumption. The effect of RO28-1675 at various concentrations on glucose-dependent signalling in BAEC was observed by measuring Smad2 phosphorylation by Western blotting. The effect of RO28-1675 on TGF-β stimulated proteoglycan synthesis was measured by 35S-SO4 incorporation and assessment of proteoglycan size by SDS-PAGE. The effects of RO28-1675 on TGF-β mediated Smad2C phosphorylation in BAEC was observed by measurement of pSmad2C levels. The direct actions of RO28-1675 on vascular reactivity were observed by measuring arteriole tone and lumen diameter. Results GKAs were demonstrated to increase glucose utilisation in pancreatic but not endothelial cells. Glucose-activated Smad2 phosphorylation was decreased in a dose-dependent fashion in the presence of RO28-1675. No effect of RO28-1675 was observed on TGF-β stimulated proteoglycan production. RO28-1675 caused a modest dilation in arteriole but not contractile sensitivity. Conclusions GKA RO28-1675 did not increase glucose consumption in endothelial cells

  18. Patients Presenting to the Emergency Unit with Gynaecological Lower Abdominal Pain, with and without Pathological Clinical Findings – Service Utilisation, Pain History, Implications

    PubMed Central

    Siedentopf, F.; Wowro, E.; Möckel, M.; Kentenich, H.; David, M.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Few studies have evaluated the utilisation of emergency gynaecological services, although lower abdominal pain (LAP) is one of the most common symptoms prompting emergency presentation. Although such pain may be caused by potentially life-threatening gynaecological diseases, very often no clinical cause is found. The aim of this study was to describe the characteristics of emergency presentations in order to enable quicker identification of real emergencies in routine clinical practice. Materials and Methods: Standardised, so-called first aid cards of 1066 consecutive patients with LAP presenting acutely to one emergency unit were analysed in this retrospective, cross-sectional study. Results: Over one third of cases did not constitute actual medical emergencies on objective criteria, with investigations yielding “no pathological findings”. Parameters were identified that more often lead to hospital admission, e.g. palpation of a mass/resistance or at least one pathological ultrasound finding. In addition, it was found that symptoms of longer duration (average 8 days), and not only acute LAP, were also often experienced by patients as emergencies. Conclusion: A diagnosis of “no pathological findings”, which was common in our study, suggests a subjective experience of an emergency from the patientʼs point of view, although the possibility of unrecognised pathology has to be borne in mind. Apart from functional disorders, the origins of symptoms may include psychosomatic causes and psychosocial problems, which cannot be further defined in the emergency care setting. Also, the phenomenon of increased utilisation of emergency services parallel to the assumed opening hours of routine outpatient care facilities must be seen in a critical light. PMID:27681519

  19. Patients Presenting to the Emergency Unit with Gynaecological Lower Abdominal Pain, with and without Pathological Clinical Findings – Service Utilisation, Pain History, Implications

    PubMed Central

    Siedentopf, F.; Wowro, E.; Möckel, M.; Kentenich, H.; David, M.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Few studies have evaluated the utilisation of emergency gynaecological services, although lower abdominal pain (LAP) is one of the most common symptoms prompting emergency presentation. Although such pain may be caused by potentially life-threatening gynaecological diseases, very often no clinical cause is found. The aim of this study was to describe the characteristics of emergency presentations in order to enable quicker identification of real emergencies in routine clinical practice. Materials and Methods: Standardised, so-called first aid cards of 1066 consecutive patients with LAP presenting acutely to one emergency unit were analysed in this retrospective, cross-sectional study. Results: Over one third of cases did not constitute actual medical emergencies on objective criteria, with investigations yielding “no pathological findings”. Parameters were identified that more often lead to hospital admission, e.g. palpation of a mass/resistance or at least one pathological ultrasound finding. In addition, it was found that symptoms of longer duration (average 8 days), and not only acute LAP, were also often experienced by patients as emergencies. Conclusion: A diagnosis of “no pathological findings”, which was common in our study, suggests a subjective experience of an emergency from the patientʼs point of view, although the possibility of unrecognised pathology has to be borne in mind. Apart from functional disorders, the origins of symptoms may include psychosomatic causes and psychosocial problems, which cannot be further defined in the emergency care setting. Also, the phenomenon of increased utilisation of emergency services parallel to the assumed opening hours of routine outpatient care facilities must be seen in a critical light.

  20. Impact of Noncommunicable Disease Multimorbidity on Healthcare Utilisation and Out-Of-Pocket Expenditures in Middle-Income Countries: Cross Sectional Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Lee, John Tayu; Hamid, Fozia; Pati, Sanghamitra; Atun, Rifat; Millett, Christopher

    2015-01-01

    Background The burden of non-communicable disease (NCDs) has grown rapidly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), where populations are ageing, with rising prevalence of multimorbidity (more than two co-existing chronic conditions) that will significantly increase pressure on already stretched health systems. We assess the impact of NCD multimorbidity on healthcare utilisation and out-of-pocket expenditures in six middle-income countries: China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russia and South Africa. Methods Secondary analyses of cross-sectional data from adult participants (>18 years) in the WHO Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE) 2007–2010. We used multiple logistic regression to determine socio-demographic correlates of multimorbidity. Association between the number of NCDs and healthcare utilisation as well as out-of-pocket spending was assessed using logistic, negative binominal and log-linear models. Results The prevalence of multimorbidity in the adult population varied from 3∙9% in Ghana to 33∙6% in Russia. Number of visits to doctors in primary and secondary care rose substantially for persons with increasing numbers of co-existing NCDs. Multimorbidity was associated with more outpatient visits in China (coefficient for number of NCD = 0∙56, 95% CI = 0∙46, 0∙66), a higher likelihood of being hospitalised in India (AOR = 1∙59, 95% CI = 1∙45, 1∙75), higher out-of-pocket expenditures for outpatient visits in India and China, and higher expenditures for hospital visits in Russia. Medicines constituted the largest proportion of out-of-pocket expenditures in persons with multimorbidity (88∙3% for outpatient, 55∙9% for inpatient visit in China) in most countries. Conclusion Multimorbidity is associated with higher levels of healthcare utilisation and greater financial burden for individuals in middle-income countries. Our study supports the WHO call for universal health insurance and health service coverage in LMICs, particularly for

  1. Impact of health centre availability on utilisation of maternity care and pregnancy outcome in a rural area of Haryana.

    PubMed

    Kumar, R; Singh, M M; Kaur, M

    1997-08-01

    Six hundred married women of 15-45 years age group were interviewed in 4 villages of the district Ambala in Haryana. Impact of health centre (HC) availability on the knowledge, opinion and practices related to maternity care and pregnancy outcome was assessed after adjusting the effect of socio-economic status. Except 17 women (2.8%), everyone knew at least one correct purpose of antenatal care (ANC) and 98.2% women had contacted health staff for ANC. However, knowledge of the respondents about the components of ANC was found to be poor in study villages. Traditional birth attendants (TBAs) conducted delivery in 76.1% cases in sub-centre (SC), 75.6% in villages without a HC compared to 49.8% in primary health centre (PHC) village. However, preference for TBAs in PHC village was 14.9%, in SC village 33.5%, and in villages without HC 36.3% (p < 0.001). Among respondents having better awareness about ANC components, preference and utilisation of modern delivery attendants was found to be higher. For maternity illnesses, consultation rate of government functionaries was 67.9% in PHC village, 52.2% in SC village and 55.8% in villages without a HC. Perinatal mortality rate of 76.0/1000 births in villages without HC was not significantly different from the rate of 87.4/1000 in SC village but rate of 38.9/1000 in the PHC village was significantly lower (p < 0.01). Awareness and availability of modern maternity services were found to have significant influence on the health seeking behaviour and pregnancy outcome.

  2. Relative bio-availability and utilisation of phosphatic fertilisers as sources of phosphorus in broilers and layers.

    PubMed

    Rama Rao, S V; Ramasubba Reddy, V

    2003-03-01

    1. Different concentrations of non-phytate phosphorus (NPP, 2.5, 3.0, 3.5, 4.0 and 4.5 g/kg diet) were given to broilers (8 to 42 d of age) to establish regressions between dietary NPP concentration and body weight gain and tibia ash content. Second and third experiments were conducted to study the feasibility of utilisation of different phosphatic fertilisers [ammonium phosphate (AP), ammonium polyphosphate (APP), single super phosphate (SSP), NPK (17:17:17, NPK) and NP (28:28:0, NPK)] in commercial broilers (8 to 42 d) and White Leghorn layers (252 to 364 d). 2. Phosphatic fertilisers were incorporated both in broiler (10 g calcium and 4.5 g NPP/kg) and layer (35 g calcium and 3.5 g NPP/kg) diets by replacing dicalcium phosphate (DCP) in toto. 3. The logarithmic curves obtained for predicting the body weight gain and tibia ash content at different levels of NPP used in experiment 1 were Y = 156.27 + 2,468.8 logX (r2= 0.958) and Y = 530.82 + 144.26 log X (r2 = 0.916), respectively. 4. Body weight gain and food intake in broilers given APP- or NP-supplemented diets were comparable to these in the DCP-fed group. Feeding of NPK, AP or SSP resulted in significant depression in weight gain and food intake and high excreta moisture content. Food/gain, Ca and P contents in tibia ash and serum were not influenced by the use of phosphatic fertilisers as P sources in broiler diets. 5. Tibia ash content in broilers fed on diets containing fertilisers was either similar to or significantly higher than that in the DCP-fed group. Broilers on AP or SSP retained more P and had higher tibia ash content than those on DCP. AP, SSP or NPK caused degenerative and necrotic changes in liver, kidney and intestine of broilers. 6. Relative bio-availability of P from APP or NP was better for body weight gain than AP, SSP or NPK, while the reverse was true for bone calcification. 7. APP and NP gave hen-d egg production similar to that of DCP-fed layers. Food intake was significantly reduced

  3. A mathematical model of microbial folate biosynthesis and utilisation: implications for antifolate development.

    PubMed

    Salcedo-Sora, J Enrique; Mc Auley, Mark T

    2016-03-01

    The metabolic biochemistry of folate biosynthesis and utilisation has evolved into a complex network of reactions. Although this complexity represents challenges to the field of folate research it has also provided a renewed source for antimetabolite targets. A range of improved folate chemotherapy continues to be developed and applied particularly to cancer and chronic inflammatory diseases. However, new or better antifolates against infectious diseases remain much more elusive. In this paper we describe the assembly of a generic deterministic mathematical model of microbial folate metabolism. Our aim is to explore how a mathematical model could be used to explore the dynamics of this inherently complex set of biochemical reactions. Using the model it was found that: (1) a particular small set of folate intermediates are overrepresented, (2) inhibitory profiles can be quantified by the level of key folate products, (3) using the model to scan for the most effective combinatorial inhibitions of folate enzymes we identified specific targets which could complement current antifolates, and (4) the model substantiates the case for a substrate cycle in the folinic acid biosynthesis reaction. Our model is coded in the systems biology markup language and has been deposited in the BioModels Database (MODEL1511020000), this makes it accessible to the community as a whole. PMID:26794619

  4. Utilisation of CryoSat-2 SAR altimeter in operational ice charting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rinne, E.; Similä, M.

    2016-01-01

    We present methods to utilise CryoSat-2 (CS-2) synthetic aperture radar (SAR) mode data in operational ice charting. We compare CS-2 data qualitatively to SAR mosaics over the Barents and Kara seas. Furthermore, we compare the CS-2 to archived operational ice charts. We present distributions of four CS-2 waveform parameters for different ice types as presented in the ice charts. We go on to present an automatic classification method for CS-2 data which, after training with operational ice charts, is capable of determining open ocean from ice with a hit rate of > 90 %. The training data are dynamically updated every 5 days using the most recent 15 days of CS-2 data and operative ice charts. This helps the adaption of the classifier to the evolving ice/snow conditions throughout winter. The classifier is also capable of detecting three different ice classes (thin and thick first-year ice as well as old ice) with success rates good enough for the output to be usable to support operational ice charting. Finally, we present a near-real-time CS-2 product just plotting the waveform characteristics and conclude that even such a simple product is usable for some of the needs of ice charting.

  5. Differential utilisation of health facilities and services for childbirth in Peninsula Malaysia--the ethnic factor.

    PubMed

    Arhsat, H; Tan Boon Ann; Tey Nai Peng

    1985-12-01

    The ethnic factor in the differential utilization of the health facilities in Peninsular Malaysia is examined. Data from the Malaysian Population and Family Survey 1984/85 show that about 45% of the births were delivered in the government hospitals, 15% in the private hospitals/clinics and the remaining 40% were delivered at home. Utilisation of these facilities varies greatly by ethnicity. The Malays have the greatest tendency to choose home delivery (60%), as opposed to institutional delivery (40%). Although urbanization and better socioeconomic conditions have led to an increase in institutional delivery, social customs continue to exert an influence on their behavior in favor of home delivery. Almost all Chinese babies are delivered in hospitals or clinics, with those from the higher social class showing a tendency to resort to the use of private hospitals/clinics for delivery. Indians were the most frequent users of government hospital across nearly all the social strata. While institutional deliveries were all attended by trained personnel, about 71% of the home deliveries were attended by government midwives and 24% by village midwives or other untrained persons, and only 5% were delivered by a doctor or a nurse.

  6. High throughput screening of lead utilising disposable screen printed shallow recessed microelectrode arrays.

    PubMed

    Hood, Sebastian J; Kadara, Rashid O; Kampouris, Dimitrios K; Banks, Craig E

    2010-01-01

    The cathodic stripping voltammetry of lead at disposable screen printed shallow recessed microelectrode arrays has been developed for the first time. The array comprises 6 microdiscs which have radii of 116 (+/-6) microns which are recessed by 4 microns and are separated by 2500 microns from their nearest neighbour in a hexagonal arrangement. The electroanalytical determination of lead was explored in 0.1 M nitric acid and found that using a 120 s deposition time, a detection limit of 3 microM is feasible which is not possible utilising a screen printed graphite macro-electrode. The sensitivity of this analytical protocol can be tailored by varying the deposition time and it is found that increasing this to 320 s facilitates a limit of detection of 39 nM. This methodology is shown to be feasible for the portable and economical screening of lead in river water samples at the levels indicated by the EC Dangerous Substances Directive (76/464/EEC).

  7. Towards zero industrial waste: Utilisation of brick dust waste in sustainable construction.

    PubMed

    Kinuthia, J M; Nidzam, R M

    2011-08-01

    Laboratory investigations were carried out to establish the potential utilisation of brick dust (BD) in construction. The dust is a waste material from the cutting of fired clay bricks. Currently, the disposal of the dust is a problem to the brick fabrication company, and hence an environmental pollution concern. The dust was stabilised either used on its own or in combination with Pulverised Fuel Ash (PFA), a by-product material from coal combustion. The traditional stabilisers of lime and/or Portland Cement (PC) were used as controls. The main aim was to use a sustainable stabiliser material, where these stabilisers were partially replaced with Ground Granulated Blastfurnace Slag (GGBS), a by-product material from steel manufacture. Compacted cylinder test specimens were made at typical stabiliser contents and moist cured for up to 56 days prior to testing for compressive and California Bearing Ratio (CBR) strength tests, and to linear expansion during moist curing and subsequent soaking in water. The results obtained showed that partial substitution of the dust with PFA resulted in stronger material compared to using it on its own. The blended stabilisers achieved better performance. These results suggest technological, economic as well as environmental advantages of using the brick dust and similar industrial by-products to achieve sustainable infrastructure development with near zero industrial waste.

  8. In vitro fermentation characteristics and effective utilisable crude protein in leaves and green pods of Moringa stenopetala and Moringa oleifera cultivated at low and mid-altitudes.

    PubMed

    Melesse, A; Steingass, H; Boguhn, J; Rodehutscord, M

    2013-06-01

    This study was conducted to assess the in vitro nutrient digestibility and utilisation of leaves and green pods of two Moringa species in supplementing the feed of ruminant animals during the dry season. Samples were analysed for proximate nutrients using official methods. The metabolisable energy (ME), organic matter digestibility (OMD) and effective utilisable crude protein (uCP) were estimated using the Hohenheim in vitro gas test method. Gas volume in Moringa stenopetala leaves and green pods was generally higher than those of Moringa oleifera. Gas volume for leaves was similar between low and mid-altitudes but was higher for green pods at mid-altitude. M. stenopetala leaves contained significantly higher ME (9.8 MJ/kg DM) and OMD (75%) than those of M. oleifera. Similarly, M. stenopetala green pods had higher ME and OMD values than those of M. oleifera. For green pods, the ME and OMD values were significantly higher at mid-altitude than those at low altitude although these values for leaves were similar between both altitudes. Moringa oleifera leaves had higher effective uCP than those of M. stenopetala. Nevertheless, the effective uCP was higher for green pods of M. stenopetala than those of M. oleifera. The effective uCP for leaves cultivated at mid-altitude was slightly higher than those at low altitude. This study suggested that leaves and green pods could be used as alternative energy and protein supplements for tropical ruminants, particularly during dry periods. It was further concluded that leaves were generally better in nutrient compositions and in vitro nutrient digestibility characteristics than green pods.

  9. Impact of musculoskeletal co-morbidity of neck and upper extremities on healthcare utilisation and sickness absence for low back pain

    PubMed Central

    IJzelenberg, W; Burdorf, A

    2004-01-01

    Aims: To describe the presence of musculoskeletal co-morbidity of the neck and upper extremities among industrial workers with low back pain, and to examine whether it has an impact on healthcare utilisation and sickness absence for low back pain. Methods: A self administered questionnaire was used to collect data from 505 industrial workers (response 86%). Results: The 12 month prevalence of low back pain was 50%. Among subjects with low back pain the 12 month prevalence of musculoskeletal co-morbidity of the neck and upper extremities was 68%. Among workers with low back pain, subjects with high pain intensity or disabling low back pain were more likely to have musculoskeletal co-morbidity. In comparison to the subjects who report back pain only, subjects with co-morbidity showed worse general health and health related quality of life. No impact of upper extremity co-morbidity was found on healthcare utilisation, and sickness absence due to low back pain. Conclusions: This study provides no evidence that musculoskeletal co-morbidity of the neck and upper extremities influences the choice to seek care or take sick leave due to low back pain among industrial manual workers. For occupational health practitioners the finding of a high co-morbidity is important to consider when implementing workplace interventions aimed at the reduction of specific musculoskeletal complaints, since the controls for one musculoskeletal complaint may impact adversely on another musculoskeletal complaint. Researchers who perform low back pain intervention studies using generic health measures, should take into account the impact of musculoskeletal co-morbidity on these measures. PMID:15377765

  10. Investigation of Matlab® as platform in navigation and control of an Automatic Guided Vehicle utilising an omnivision sensor.

    PubMed

    Kotze, Ben; Jordaan, Gerrit

    2014-08-25

    Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGVs) are navigated utilising multiple types of sensors for detecting the environment. In this investigation such sensors are replaced and/or minimized by the use of a single omnidirectional camera picture stream. An area of interest is extracted, and by using image processing the vehicle is navigated on a set path. Reconfigurability is added to the route layout by signs incorporated in the navigation process. The result is the possible manipulation of a number of AGVs, each on its own designated colour-signed path. This route is reconfigurable by the operator with no programming alteration or intervention. A low resolution camera and a Matlab® software development platform are utilised. The use of Matlab® lends itself to speedy evaluation and implementation of image processing options on the AGV, but its functioning in such an environment needs to be assessed.

  11. A simple solution to the problem of effective utilisation of the target material for pulsed laser deposition of thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuzanyan, A. S.; Kuzanyan, A. A.; Petrosyan, V. A.; Pilosyan, S. Kh; Grasiuk, A. Z.

    2013-12-01

    The factors determining the efficiency of the target material utilisation for pulsed laser deposition of films are considered. The target volume is calculated, which is evaporated in the ablation process by the focused laser radiation having a rectangular form. The new device is suggested and developed for obtaining thin films by the method of laser deposition, which is specific in the employment of a simple optical system mounted outside a deposition chamber that comprises two lenses and the diaphragm and focuses the laser beam onto a target in the form of a sector-like spot. Thin films of CuO and YBaCuO were deposited with this device. Several deposition cycles revealed that the target material is consumed uniformly from the entire surface of the target. A maximal spread of the target thickness was not greater than +/-2% both prior to deposition and after it. The device designed provides a high coefficient of the target material utilisation efficiency.

  12. Investigation of Matlab® as Platform in Navigation and Control of an Automatic Guided Vehicle Utilising an Omnivision Sensor

    PubMed Central

    Kotze, Ben; Jordaan, Gerrit

    2014-01-01

    Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGVs) are navigated utilising multiple types of sensors for detecting the environment. In this investigation such sensors are replaced and/or minimized by the use of a single omnidirectional camera picture stream. An area of interest is extracted, and by using image processing the vehicle is navigated on a set path. Reconfigurability is added to the route layout by signs incorporated in the navigation process. The result is the possible manipulation of a number of AGVs, each on its own designated colour-signed path. This route is reconfigurable by the operator with no programming alteration or intervention. A low resolution camera and a Matlab® software development platform are utilised. The use of Matlab® lends itself to speedy evaluation and implementation of image processing options on the AGV, but its functioning in such an environment needs to be assessed. PMID:25157548

  13. Utilisation of oral health services, oral health needs and oral health status in a peri-urban informal settlement.

    PubMed

    Westaway, M S; Viljoen, E; Rudolph, M J

    1999-04-01

    Interviews were conducted with 294 black residents (155 females and 138 males) of a peri-urban informal settlement in Gauteng to ascertain utilisation of oral health services, oral health needs and oral health status. Only 37 per cent of the sample had consulted a dentist or medical practitioner, usually for extractions. Teenagers and employed persons were significantly less likely to utilise dentists than the older age groups and unemployed persons. Forty per cent were currently experiencing oral health problems such as a sore mouth, tooth decay and bleeding/painful gums. Two hundred and twelve (73 per cent) interviewees wanted dental treatment or advice. Residents who rated their oral health status as fair or poor appeared to have the greatest need for oral health services. The use of interviews appears to be a cost-effective method of determining oral morbidity. PMID:10518916

  14. Income-based disparities in health care utilisation under universal health coverage in Brazil, 2002-2003.

    PubMed

    Cataife, Guido; Courtemanche, Charles

    2014-01-01

    Since Brazil's adoption of universal health care in 1988, the country's health care system has consisted of a mix of private providers and free public providers. We test whether income-based disparities in medical visits and medications remain in Brazil despite universal coverage using a nationally representative sample of over 48,000 households. Additional income is associated with less public sector utilisation and more private sector utilisation, both using simple correlations and regressions controlling for household characteristics and local area fixed effects. Importantly, the increase in private care use is greater than the drop in public care use. Also, income and unmet medical needs are negatively associated. These results suggest that access limitations remain for low-income households despite the availability of free public care.

  15. Feed utilisation of Ethiopian Highland lambs on a basal diet of Eleucine coracana straw and supplemented with variously sourced protein mixed with wheat bran.

    PubMed

    Alem, Mulat; Tamir, Berhan; Kurtu, Mohammed Y

    2011-01-01

    The study investigated the effect of supplementation of a basal diet of Eleucine coracana (finger millet) straw with different protein sources mixed with wheat bran on feed utilisation in Ethiopian Highland lambs. Twenty yearling intact male lambs (14.9 ± 0.30 kg; mean ± SD) were used in a randomised complete block design. Dietary treatments included a basal diet of E. coracana straw ad libitum (T1); basal diet supplemented with a mixture of 222 g noug seed (Guizotia abyssinica) cake (NSC) and 78 g wheat bran (WB) (T2); basal diet with a mixture of 234 g cotton seedcake (CSC) and 66 g WB (T3); and basal diet with a mixture of 5.4 g urea (U) and 294.6 g WB (T4). The supplements were offered at the daily rate of 300 g dry matter (DM) per lamb in two equal portions at 0800 and 1600 hours. Supplementation of Ethiopian Highland lambs on E. coracana straw basal diet with varied protein sources increased (P < 0.01) the total DM, OM and CP intake and improved (P < 0.01) the daily body weight gain and feed conversion efficiency. Lambs in T2, T3 and T4 gained weight at the rate of 22.7, 21.9 and 14.1 g/day, respectively, while lambs on the control diet lost weight at a rate of -24.9 g/day. Supplementation also improved (P < 0.01) the digestibility of DM, OM, CP and NDF of the total diet. It was concluded that supplementation of E. coracana straw with NSC, CSC and U mixed with WB improves feed utilisation, body weight gain and digestibility in Ethiopian Highland lambs.

  16. Health care utilisation of prematurely born, preschool children related to hospitalisation for RSV infection

    PubMed Central

    Greenough, A; Alexander, J; Burgess, S; Bytham, J; Chetcuti, P; Hagan, J; Lenney, W; Melville, S; Shaw, N; Boorman, J; Coles, S; Turner, J; Pang, F

    2004-01-01

    Background: In prematurely born infants with chronic lung disease (CLD), RSV hospitalisation is associated with increased health service utilisation and costs in the first two years after birth. Aims: To determine whether RSV hospitalisation in the first two years was associated with chronic respiratory morbidity during the preschool years in prematurely born children who had had CLD. Methods: Retrospective review of readmissions, outpatient attendances, and community care in years 2–4 and, at age 5 years, assessment of the children's respiratory status and their health related quality of life. Comparison was made of the results of children who had had at least one hospitalisation in the first two years after birth for RSV infection (RSV group) to those of the rest of the cohort. Participants were 190 of an original cohort of 235 infants with CLD and a median gestational age 27 (range 22–33) weeks. Results: The 33 children in the RSV group, compared to the rest of the cohort, had a greater duration of hospital stay and more outpatient appointments. The RSV group had required more prescriptions for all treatments and respiratory medications, and more had used an inhaler. The cost of care of the RSV group was higher (median £2630 [€4000, US$4800], range £124–18 091 versus £1360 [€2500, US$3000], range £5–18 929) and their health related quality of life was lower. Conclusion: In prematurely born children who had developed CLD, RSV hospitalisation in the first two years was associated with chronic respiratory morbidity and increased cost of care. PMID:15210503

  17. Reference-based pricing schemes: effect on pharmaceutical expenditure, resource utilisation and health outcomes.

    PubMed

    Ioannides-Demos, Lisa L; Ibrahim, Joseph E; McNeil, John J

    2002-01-01

    Pharmaceutical expenditure is rising more rapidly than the general inflation rate in most advanced countries. One strategy that has been introduced to control pharmaceutical costs is reference-based pricing (RBP). Its potential is restricted to those specific segments of the drug market where several drugs (and/or their generic forms) exist without substantial evidence that any particular agent is superior. Three broad approaches have been adopted. These involve the aggregation of drugs into generic groups, related drug groups (e.g. ACE inhibitors) or drugs grouped by therapeutic indication (e.g. antihypertensives). For each drug group, a single reimbursement level or reference price is set. Drugs above the reference price require part or total payment by the patient. The experience with RBP ranges from over 10 years in Germany (involving all levels of RBP) to the more recent implementation of RBP for related drug groups in Australia. This review summarises the current state of knowledge on RBP from the published experiences in the countries where RBP has been adopted. The published systematic reviews of RBP from the countries that have implemented it suggest that RBP has been successful at temporarily capping drug prices for the RBP drug groups and achieving short term cost savings. However, other factors influencing total pharmaceutical expenditure have often occurred simultaneously and make it difficult to isolate specific effects of RBP. Further investigation is required before any valid conclusions can be drawn about the net effect of RBP on healthcare costs. RBP has withstood the initial legal challenges of pharmaceutical companies and the criticisms of some clinicians. Where the reference price is based on the lowest priced drug(s) in the group, RBP appears to be one of the few strategies likely to be effective at encouraging doctors to use the least expensive agents as first-line therapy and utilise more expensive agents in those who experience side effects

  18. Light Levels Affect Carbon Utilisation in Tropical Seagrass under Ocean Acidification

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Under future ocean acidification (OA), increased availability of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in seawater may enhance seagrass productivity. However, the ability to utilise additional DIC could be regulated by light availability, often reduced through land runoff. To test this, two tropical seagrass species, Cymodocea serrulata and Halodule uninervis were exposed to two DIC concentrations (447 μatm and 1077 μatm pCO2), and three light treatments (35, 100, 380 μmol m-2 s-1) for two weeks. DIC uptake mechanisms were separately examined by measuring net photosynthetic rates while subjecting C. serrulata and H. uninervis to changes in light and addition of bicarbonate (HCO3-) use inhibitors (carbonic anhydrase inhibitor, acetazolamide) and TRIS buffer (pH 8.0). We observed a strong dependence on energy driven H+-HCO3- co-transport (TRIS, which disrupts H+ extrusion) in C. serrulata under all light levels, indicating greater CO2 dependence in low light. This was confirmed when, after two weeks exposure, DIC enrichment stimulated maximum photosynthetic rates (Pmax) and efficiency (α) more in C. serrulata grown under lower light levels (36–60% increase) than for those in high light (4% increase). However, C. serrulata growth increased with both DIC enrichment and light levels. Growth, NPP and photosynthetic responses in H. uninervis increased with higher light treatments and were independent of DIC availability. Furthermore, H. uninervis was found to be more flexible in HCO3- uptake pathways. Here, light availability influenced productivity responses to DIC enrichment, via both carbon fixation and acquisition processes, highlighting the role of water quality in future responses to OA. PMID:26938454

  19. Can silicon isotopes be used to assess anthropogenic impacts and nutrient utilisation in Lake Baikal, Siberia?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swann, G. E. A.; Panizzo, V. N.; Mackay, A. W.; Roberts, S.; Vologina, E.; Horstwood, M. S.

    2014-12-01

    Silicon isotope geochemistry (28Si, 29Si, 30Si) represents a growing field in Earth Sciences providing information to constrain and understand biogeochemical cycling on land and in oceans. Here we present records of δ30Si (30Si/28Si) from the Lake Baikal drainage basin in central Siberia to understand silicon cycling through the dominant river tributaries and into Lake Baikal itself, the world's deepest and most voluminous lake containing one fifth of all freshwater not stored in glaciers and ice caps.Waters were collected along an upstream transect for the five dominant Lake Baikal inflows as well as from the Selenga Delta which account for >50% of the annual riverine flow to the lake. Samples for dissolved silicon (DSi) concentrations and silicon isotopic signatures (δ30SiDSi) were filtered and acidified in the field with isotopic analyses conducted on a Neptune + Multi-Collector ICP-MS using wet plasma mode with Mg doping of samples and standard-sample-standard bracketing. Analytical reproducibility is 0.11‰ (2σ) and blanks are <1% of signal intensity. The DSi concentration of all river inflow samples varies from c. 2.5-6.3 ppm, which contrasts with concentrations of < 1ppm from the Angara River, the lake's only outflow. Combined with river δ30SiDSi values of c. + 0.94 to +1.52‰ and lake water and outflow values of c. +2.50‰, the results show significant (up to 60%) biological utilisation of silicon entering the lake.With the Lake Baikal having been designated a World Heritage Site since 1996, due to its high level of biological endemicity, the work in combination with sediment cores from the lake provides an insight into the transportation and fate of silicon in the basin and an assessment of how climate change and expanding anthropogenic activities in the region including urbanisation, deforestation, agriculture and mining have impacted biogeochemical cycling.

  20. Utilising reinforcement learning to develop strategies for driving auditory neural implants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Geoffrey W.; Zambetta, Fabio; Li, Xiaodong; Paolini, Antonio G.

    2016-08-01

    Objective. In this paper we propose a novel application of reinforcement learning to the area of auditory neural stimulation. We aim to develop a simulation environment which is based off real neurological responses to auditory and electrical stimulation in the cochlear nucleus (CN) and inferior colliculus (IC) of an animal model. Using this simulator we implement closed loop reinforcement learning algorithms to determine which methods are most effective at learning effective acoustic neural stimulation strategies. Approach. By recording a comprehensive set of acoustic frequency presentations and neural responses from a set of animals we created a large database of neural responses to acoustic stimulation. Extensive electrical stimulation in the CN and the recording of neural responses in the IC provides a mapping of how the auditory system responds to electrical stimuli. The combined dataset is used as the foundation for the simulator, which is used to implement and test learning algorithms. Main results. Reinforcement learning, utilising a modified n-Armed Bandit solution, is implemented to demonstrate the model’s function. We show the ability to effectively learn stimulation patterns which mimic the cochlea’s ability to covert acoustic frequencies to neural activity. Time taken to learn effective replication using neural stimulation takes less than 20 min under continuous testing. Significance. These results show the utility of reinforcement learning in the field of neural stimulation. These results can be coupled with existing sound processing technologies to develop new auditory prosthetics that are adaptable to the recipients current auditory pathway. The same process can theoretically be abstracted to other sensory and motor systems to develop similar electrical replication of neural signals.

  1. Increased utilisation of PEPFAR-supported laboratory services by non-HIV patents in Tanzania

    PubMed Central

    McNairy, Margaret L.; Gwynn, Charon; Rabkin, Miriam; Antelman, Gretchen; Wu, Yingfeng; Alemayehu, Bereket; Lim, Travis; Imtiaz, Rubina; Mosha, Fausta; Mwasekaga, Michael; Othman, Asha A.; Justman, Jessica

    2016-01-01

    Background It is unknown to what extent the non-HIV population utilises laboratories supported by the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). Objectives We aimed to describe the number and proportion of laboratory tests performed in 2009 and 2011 for patients referred from HIV and non-HIV services (NHSs) in a convenience sample collected from 127 laboratories supported by PEPFAR in Tanzania. We then compared changes in the proportions of tests performed for patients referred from NHSs in 2009 vs 2011. Methods Haematology, chemistry, tuberculosis and syphilis test data were collected from available laboratory registers. Referral sources, including HIV services, NHSs, or lack of a documented referral source, were recorded. A generalised linear mixed model reported the odds that a test was from a NHS. Results A total of 94 132 tests from 94 laboratories in 2009 and 157 343 tests from 101 laboratories in 2011 were recorded. Half of all tests lacked a documented referral source. Tests from NHSs constituted 42% (66 084) of all tests in 2011, compared with 31% (29 181) in 2009. A test in 2011 was twice as likely to have been referred from a NHS as in 2009 (adjusted odds ratio: 2.0 [95% confidence interval: 2.0–2.1]). Conclusion Between 2009 and 2011, the number and proportion of tests from NHSs increased across all types of test. This finding may reflect increased documentation of NHS referrals or that the laboratory scale-up originally intended to service the HIV-positive population in Tanzania may be associated with a ‘spillover effect’ amongst the general population. PMID:26962475

  2. Light Levels Affect Carbon Utilisation in Tropical Seagrass under Ocean Acidification.

    PubMed

    Ow, Yan X; Uthicke, Sven; Collier, Catherine J

    2016-01-01

    Under future ocean acidification (OA), increased availability of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in seawater may enhance seagrass productivity. However, the ability to utilise additional DIC could be regulated by light availability, often reduced through land runoff. To test this, two tropical seagrass species, Cymodocea serrulata and Halodule uninervis were exposed to two DIC concentrations (447 μatm and 1077 μatm pCO2), and three light treatments (35, 100, 380 μmol m(-2) s(-1)) for two weeks. DIC uptake mechanisms were separately examined by measuring net photosynthetic rates while subjecting C. serrulata and H. uninervis to changes in light and addition of bicarbonate (HCO3-) use inhibitors (carbonic anhydrase inhibitor, acetazolamide) and TRIS buffer (pH 8.0). We observed a strong dependence on energy driven H+-HCO3- co-transport (TRIS, which disrupts H+ extrusion) in C. serrulata under all light levels, indicating greater CO2 dependence in low light. This was confirmed when, after two weeks exposure, DIC enrichment stimulated maximum photosynthetic rates (Pmax) and efficiency (α) more in C. serrulata grown under lower light levels (36-60% increase) than for those in high light (4% increase). However, C. serrulata growth increased with both DIC enrichment and light levels. Growth, NPP and photosynthetic responses in H. uninervis increased with higher light treatments and were independent of DIC availability. Furthermore, H. uninervis was found to be more flexible in HCO3- uptake pathways. Here, light availability influenced productivity responses to DIC enrichment, via both carbon fixation and acquisition processes, highlighting the role of water quality in future responses to OA. PMID:26938454

  3. Impact of utilisation of uncompleted handouts on power point presentations (PPT) in rural Indian medical institute

    PubMed Central

    BHAISARE, ROSHAN; KAMBLE, BHAVNA

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Note taking while attending a PPT requires high activity of memory and writing process which ultimately leads to what is called “death by power point” referring to boredom and fatigue.  To overcome this we planned to evaluate the impact of utilisation of uncompleted handouts given prior to PPT presentations. Methods Final year MBBS students were divided in 2 batches, batch A and batch B.  For a set of lectures one batch was provided with handouts before lecture while the other batch was given lectures only. Crossover was done to avoid bias, all the lectures being given by the same presenter.  At the end of each lecture, a short questionnaire of 10 Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) was provided to the students. Mean scores were calculated for lectures with handouts and without handouts. Results For a set of lectures, when batch A was provided with handouts, the mean score was 28.2; for batch B to which no handouts were given the mean score was 23.4. Similarly, for batch B when provided with handouts the mean score was 29.1, for batch A which was not provided with handouts the mean score was 24. There was an average increase of 4.2 marks. Actual gain when handouts were provided was 1.2 marks per lecture.  It was more for the batch comprising of repeater students as compared to the batch of fresher students. Increase in attendance was also noted. Conclusion Providing uncompleted handouts before a didactic lecture definitely results in increase in knowledge gain; repeater students benefit more with uncompleted handouts, PMID:27382583

  4. Light Levels Affect Carbon Utilisation in Tropical Seagrass under Ocean Acidification.

    PubMed

    Ow, Yan X; Uthicke, Sven; Collier, Catherine J

    2016-01-01

    Under future ocean acidification (OA), increased availability of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in seawater may enhance seagrass productivity. However, the ability to utilise additional DIC could be regulated by light availability, often reduced through land runoff. To test this, two tropical seagrass species, Cymodocea serrulata and Halodule uninervis were exposed to two DIC concentrations (447 μatm and 1077 μatm pCO2), and three light treatments (35, 100, 380 μmol m(-2) s(-1)) for two weeks. DIC uptake mechanisms were separately examined by measuring net photosynthetic rates while subjecting C. serrulata and H. uninervis to changes in light and addition of bicarbonate (HCO3-) use inhibitors (carbonic anhydrase inhibitor, acetazolamide) and TRIS buffer (pH 8.0). We observed a strong dependence on energy driven H+-HCO3- co-transport (TRIS, which disrupts H+ extrusion) in C. serrulata under all light levels, indicating greater CO2 dependence in low light. This was confirmed when, after two weeks exposure, DIC enrichment stimulated maximum photosynthetic rates (Pmax) and efficiency (α) more in C. serrulata grown under lower light levels (36-60% increase) than for those in high light (4% increase). However, C. serrulata growth increased with both DIC enrichment and light levels. Growth, NPP and photosynthetic responses in H. uninervis increased with higher light treatments and were independent of DIC availability. Furthermore, H. uninervis was found to be more flexible in HCO3- uptake pathways. Here, light availability influenced productivity responses to DIC enrichment, via both carbon fixation and acquisition processes, highlighting the role of water quality in future responses to OA.

  5. Feasibility of utilising an infrared-thermographic technique for early detection of subclinical mastitis in dairy camels (Camelus dromedarius).

    PubMed

    Samara, Emad M; Ayadi, Moez; Aljumaah, Riyadh S

    2014-02-01

    Despite the proven ability of infrared thermography (IRT) technology for early detection of subclinical mastitis in dairy cows/sheep/goats, studies on its diagnostic feasibility in dairy camels are lacking. Sixty-five lactating camels in mid lactation, machine milked twice-daily and managed under intensive conditions were screened to evaluate the feasibility of utilising IRT compared with other routine indicators in detecting subclinical mastitis. Immediately before the morning milking, a portable infrared camera was used to obtain thermograms in duplicate for the front and rear left quarters to determine the udder surface temperature (UST). Thereafter, milk samples from quarters were collected, and processed for California mastitis test (CMT) score and somatic cell count (SCC). In the present study, CMT score was used to define subclinical mastitis and the feasibility of IRT to detect subclinical mastitis was compared with CMT and SCC. According to CMT score, subclinical mastitic udders had an average UST of 1·42 °C greater (P<0·0001) than healthy udders. The relationship between UST and CMT was found to be highly correlated (r=0·77; P<0·001), and UST was linearly increased as the CMT increased [UST (°C)=34·86+0·66×CMT score; R 2=0·65; P<0·001]. Additionally, high correlations were obtained between UST and SCC score (r=0·75; P<0·001) and the relationship between UST and SCC was fitted best to a logarithmic equation [UST, °C=33·39+0·88×Log (SCC, ×103 cells/ml), R 2=0·61, P<0·001]. The cut-off value, sensitivity, specificity and area under the receiver operating characteristics (ROC) curve for UST were 35·15 °C, 0·90, 0·98, and 0·95, respectively, when subclinical mastitis was defined according to CMT score, and were 35·70 °C, 0·89, 0·96 and 0·94, respectively, when categorised according to the obtained SCC threshold (SCC=432 000 cells/ml). In conclusion, IRT, as an indirect non-invasive screening method, was highly feasible for

  6. Utilisation of Blood Components in Cardiac Surgery: A Single-Centre Retrospective Analysis with Regard to Diagnosis-Related Procedures

    PubMed Central

    Geissler, Raoul Georg; Rotering, Heinrich; Buddendick, Hubert; Franz, Dominik; Bunzemeier, Holger; Roeder, Norbert; Kwiecien, Robert; Sibrowski, Walter; Scheld, Hans H.; Martens, Sven; Schlenke, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Background More blood components are required in cardiac surgery than in most other medical disciplines. The overall blood demand may increase as a function of the total number of cardiothoracic and vascular surgical interventions and their level of complexity, and also when considering the demographic ageing. Awareness has grown with respect to adverse events, such as transfusion-related immunomodulation by allogeneic blood supply, which can contribute to morbidity and mortality. Therefore, programmes of patient blood management (PBM) have been implemented to avoid unnecessary blood transfusions and to standardise the indication of blood transfusions more strictly with aim to improve patients' overall outcomes. Methods A comprehensive retrospective analysis of the utilisation of blood components in the Department of Cardiac Surgery at the University Hospital of Münster (UKM) was performed over a 4-year period. Based on a medical reporting system of all medical disciplines, which was established as part of a PBM initiative, all transfused patients in cardiac surgery and their blood components were identified in a diagnosis- and medical procedure-related system, which allows the precise allocation of blood consumption to interventional procedures in cardiac surgery, such as coronary or valve surgery. Results This retrospective single centre study included all in-patients in cardiac surgery at the UKM from 2009 to 2012, corresponding to a total of 1,405-1,644 cases per year. A blood supply was provided for 55.6-61.9% of the cardiac surgery patients, whereas approximately 9% of all in-patients at the UKM required blood transfusions. Most of the blood units were applied during cardiac valve surgery and during coronary surgery. Further surgical activities with considerable use of blood components included thoracic surgery, aortic surgery, heart transplantations and the use of artificial hearts. Under the measures of PBM in 2012 a noticeable decrease in the number of

  7. Effect of Removing Direct Payment for Health Care on Utilisation and Health Outcomes in Ghanaian Children: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Ansah, Evelyn Korkor; Narh-Bana, Solomon; Asiamah, Sabina; Dzordzordzi, Vivian; Biantey, Kingsley; Dickson, Kakra; Gyapong, John Owusu; Koram, Kwadwo Ansah; Greenwood, Brian M; Mills, Anne; Whitty, Christopher J. M

    2009-01-01

    Background Delays in accessing care for malaria and other diseases can lead to disease progression, and user fees are a known barrier to accessing health care. Governments are introducing free health care to improve health outcomes. Free health care affects treatment seeking, and it is therefore assumed to lead to improved health outcomes, but there is no direct trial evidence of the impact of removing out-of-pocket payments on health outcomes in developing countries. This trial was designed to test the impact of free health care on health outcomes directly. Methods and Findings 2,194 households containing 2,592 Ghanaian children under 5 y old were randomised into a prepayment scheme allowing free primary care including drugs, or to a control group whose families paid user fees for health care (normal practice); 165 children whose families had previously paid to enrol in the prepayment scheme formed an observational arm. The primary outcome was moderate anaemia (haemoglobin [Hb] < 8 g/dl); major secondary outcomes were health care utilisation, severe anaemia, and mortality. At baseline the randomised groups were similar. Introducing free primary health care altered the health care seeking behaviour of households; those randomised to the intervention arm used formal health care more and nonformal care less than the control group. Introducing free primary health care did not lead to any measurable difference in any health outcome. The primary outcome of moderate anaemia was detected in 37 (3.1%) children in the control and 36 children (3.2%) in the intervention arm (adjusted odds ratio 1.05, 95% confidence interval 0.66–1.67). There were four deaths in the control and five in the intervention group. Mean Hb concentration, severe anaemia, parasite prevalence, and anthropometric measurements were similar in each group. Families who previously self-enrolled in the prepayment scheme were significantly less poor, had better health measures, and used services more

  8. Without gaps - 3D photo-reconstruction of gully headcuts by combined utilisation of UAV and close-range photogrammetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stöcker, Claudia; Karrasch, Pierre; Eltner, Anette

    2015-04-01

    Gully erosion is a worldwide phenomenon causing permanent degradation of fertile land. Especially in the Mediterranean, gullies contribute to high soil loss rates which necessitate multi-temporal and high resolution monitoring. Gullies naturally exhibit complex surface morphologies and hence are difficult to measure. Images acquired airborne or terrestrial are possible data sources for digital gully modelling due to availing of photogrammetric methods to achieve 3D models. In this regard unmanned airborne vehicles (UAVs) allow for low cost, flexible and frequent areal gully monitoring, but exhibit limitations as a result of the birds-eye view - i.e. at steep sidewalls and overhanging areas. Terrestrial images offer advantages at local assessments and can be obtained spontaneously as needed. However, images acquired from ground are not able to ensure areal coverage. To integrate the advantages of both data sources and to overcome the above mentioned limitations, this study introduces a methodological approach of combined utilisation of nadir UAV data and oblique terrestrial images for 3D photo reconstruction. Two gully headcuts in Andalusia (Spain) are analysed to confirm the suitability of the synergetic data usage. The results show that the UAV model of the gully, generated from images from flying heights of 15 m, implies inconsistency of data at slope gradients of 50 to 60 °. To eliminate these gaps additional terrestrial images can be integrated, which are geo-referenced solely using information of the already calculated 3D model and orthophoto from the UAV images. Referencing errors of the terrestrial point clouds are fixed by applying fine registration. The final merged digital gully model reveals a resolution of 0.5 cm and an accuracy of 1 cm. Concluding, high density point clouds based on the fusion of UAV and terrestrial image data show a significant improvement of 3D photo-reconstruction of two gully headcuts compared to detached processing of single data

  9. Mise à jour sur l’utilisation clinique de la buprénorphine

    PubMed Central

    Ducharme, Simon; Fraser, Ronald; Gill, Kathryn

    2012-01-01

    Résumé Objectif Examiner les données scientifiques actuelles sur la buprénorphine-naloxone pour le traitement des troubles liés aux opioïdes, en insistant sur le contexte des soins primaires. Qualité des données On a fait une recension dans MEDLINE et la base de données Cochrane des synthèses critiques. Les données probantes sont surtout de niveau I. Message principal La buprénorphine est un agoniste partiel des récepteurs μ des opioïdes et un antagoniste des récepteurs κ des opioïdes ayant une longue demi-vie et un potentiel moins grand que la méthadone d’entraîner un usage abusif. Pour une désintoxication, la buprénorphine est au moins équivalente à la méthadone et supérieure à la clonidine. Comme thérapie de substitution, la buprénorphine est clairement supérieure au placebo. La méthadone comporte de légers avantages en ce qui a trait à la rétention en thérapie, mais une approche par étape en utilisant initialement la buprénorphine-naloxone est aussi efficace. Il est possible, sécuritaire et efficace de recourir à la buprénorphine en milieu de soins primaires. On peut obtenir l’autorisation de prescrire de la buprénorphine après avoir suivi une formation en ligne. Conclusion La buprénorphine est un agent sécuritaire et efficace pour la désintoxication en cas de dépendance aux opioïdes. Elle peut servir d’agent de première intention dans les programmes de thérapie de substitution, en raison de son potentiel plus faible d’usage abusif en comparaison d’autres opioïdes. Son efficacité en milieux de soins primaires en fait un outil thérapeutique utile pour les médecins de famille.

  10. Silages containing buckwheat and chicory: quality, digestibility and nitrogen utilisation by lactating cows.

    PubMed

    Kälber, Tasja; Kreuzer, Michael; Leiber, Florian

    2012-02-01

    The suitability of silages containing buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum) and chicory (Cichorium intybus) for the nutrition of dairy cows was determined. Buckwheat and chicory were sown in mixture with ryegrass (Lolium multilorum), and a pure ryegrass culture served as a control forage. Swards were harvested 55 d after sowing and were ensiled after wilting, without additives in small round bales. Finally, buckwheat and chicory made up the dietary dry matter (DM) proportions of 0.46 and 0.34, respectively. Concentrates were restricted to 2 kg/d. Diets were fed to 3 x 6 late-lactating cows for 15 d at ad libitum access. During the collection period (days 10-15) amounts of feed intake and faeces, urine and milk were recorded and samples were taken. Ensilability was good for buckwheat and ryegrass swards, but was so less for the chicory sward, which was rich in total ash. The buckwheat silage was rich in acid detergent fibre (445 g/kg DM) and lignin (75.7 g/kg DM) and contained less crude protein (135 g/kg DM) and ether extract (15.8 g/kg DM) than the other silages. Consistent with that, the apparent digestibility of the organic matter and fibre were lowest when feeding this silage. The potassium concentrations in the chicory and ryegrass silages were high (61 g/ kg) and lower in buckwheat (47 g/kg). No significant treatment effects on intake, body weight, milk yield or milk composition as well as plasma beta-hydroxybutyrate and non-esterified fatty acids occurred. Being lowest in nitrogen (N) content, the buckwheat silage resulted in the lowest urine N losses and the most efficient N utilisation for milk protein synthesis, but this at cost of body N retention. The results show that silages containing buckwheat and chicory may be used as components of the forage part of dairy cows' diets even though they were found to have a lower feeding value than ryegrass silage.

  11. Rapakivi Granite: An architectural emblem of St Petersburg and its utilisation in other world cities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bulakh, Andrey; Gavrilenko, Vladimir; Panova, Helen

    2015-04-01

    The wide-ranging utilisation of Rapakivi Granite in St Petersburg is typified by the the famous Alexander Column, and 114 stone columns of St Isaac's Cathedralas well as the pedestal of the Nicholas I monument, and portals and basements of buildings of the Admiralty, General Staff, Senate and Synod. The stone is also frequently seen among pavement slabs and in parapets of embankments and bridges around the city. This list of examples where Rapakivi Granite has been used could be expanded further. All Rapakivi Granites used in the buildings of St.Petersburg were quarried from the so-called Vyborg massif. At present it has been found that the massif occupies an area of about 18 000 km2. In the past granite of the Vyborg massif was worked from several quarries in the vicinity of Fredrikshamn (Hamina) in Finland for use in St Peterburg. The best known granite quarries are at Piterlaks (Piuterlahti) and Gimmekyul (Hämeenkylä). Sometimes Rapakivi Granite form Finland differs in appearance from typical varieties. Thus columns of a classical portal in the house at N 7 in Pochtamtskaya Street are hewn from this greyish variety. Other examples are the plinth of the General Staff and Trade Store buildings. After the 1960s varieties from the Leningrad district, and Korosten (Ukraine) massifs were used in St Petersburg. Today it is possible to find examples of Rapakivi Granite from Finland in cities in the USA, South Africa, United Kingdom and Germany. It is a long used stone as demonstrated by its cultural heritage. It is also used as an ornamental or decorative stone in modern architecture. References: 1) Bulakh, A.G., Abakumova, N.B., and Romanovsky, J.V. St Petersburg: a History in Stone. 2010. Print House of St Petersburg State University. 173 p. (In English). 2) Tutakova, A.Ya., Romanovskiy, A.Z., Bulakh, A.G., and Leer, V.I. Dimension Stone of the Leningrad Region. Granites of the Karelia Isthmus in Architecture of the Modern St Petersburg. 2011. St Petersburg. 78 p

  12. Factors associated with awareness and utilisation of a community mobilisation intervention for female sex workers in Andhra Pradesh, India

    PubMed Central

    Burroway, Rebekah; Reed, Elizabeth

    2010-01-01

    Objectives Examine factors associated with awareness and active utilisation of a community mobilisation intervention (CMI) to address HIV risk in female sex workers (FSWs) in a context characterised by multiple forms of sex work. Design Data came from two rounds, conducted in Spring 2006 and Spring 2007, of a serial cross-sectional survey of FSWs (n=812 in round 1, n=673 in round 2) recruited through respondent-driven sampling in Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh, India. Methods Descriptive statistics compared characteristics of programme aware and unaware FSWs and from among the aware, to characterise active program users. Multinomial logistic regression was used to assess factors associated with programme exposure. Results Between Rounds 1 and 2, programme awareness increased from 41.8% to 69.6% of respondents, and active utilisation (among those who were aware) increased from 49.2% to 61.0%. Street-based FSWs were under-represented and brothel-based FSWs overrepresented in both groups and rounds. Geographic proximity and literacy were associated with programme awareness but not utilisation. The most important factor associated with both forms of intervention exposure across rounds was willingness to be identified in public as a FSWs (OR 2.2–4.8). Conclusion Public visibility is a critical component of CMIs. Such interventions should develop strategies for involving FSWs that allow them to remain invisible, while also working to reduce the threat associated with public visibility. In contexts where sex work occurs in multiple venues, it is important to develop CMIs that include and address the needs of FSWs working in them all. PMID:20167735

  13. Equality in Maternal and Newborn Health: Modelling Geographic Disparities in Utilisation of Care in Five East African Countries

    PubMed Central

    Ruktanonchai, Nick W.; Nove, Andrea; Lopes, Sofia; Pezzulo, Carla; Bosco, Claudio; Alegana, Victor A.; Burgert, Clara R.; Ayiko, Rogers; Charles, Andrew SEK; Lambert, Nkurunziza; Msechu, Esther; Kathini, Esther; Matthews, Zoë; Tatem, Andrew J.

    2016-01-01

    Background Geographic accessibility to health facilities represents a fundamental barrier to utilisation of maternal and newborn health (MNH) services, driving historically hidden spatial pockets of localized inequalities. Here, we examine utilisation of MNH care as an emergent property of accessibility, highlighting high-resolution spatial heterogeneity and sub-national inequalities in receiving care before, during, and after delivery throughout five East African countries. Methods We calculated a geographic inaccessibility score to the nearest health facility at 300 x 300 m using a dataset of 9,314 facilities throughout Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. Using Demographic and Health Surveys data, we utilised hierarchical mixed effects logistic regression to examine the odds of: 1) skilled birth attendance, 2) receiving 4+ antenatal care visits at time of delivery, and 3) receiving a postnatal health check-up within 48 hours of delivery. We applied model results onto the accessibility surface to visualise the probabilities of obtaining MNH care at both high-resolution and sub-national levels after adjusting for live births in 2015. Results Across all outcomes, decreasing wealth and education levels were associated with lower odds of obtaining MNH care. Increasing geographic inaccessibility scores were associated with the strongest effect in lowering odds of obtaining care observed across outcomes, with the widest disparities observed among skilled birth attendance. Specifically, for each increase in the inaccessibility score to the nearest health facility, the odds of having skilled birth attendance at delivery was reduced by over 75% (0.24; CI: 0.19–0.3), while the odds of receiving antenatal care decreased by nearly 25% (0.74; CI: 0.61–0.89) and 40% for obtaining postnatal care (0.58; CI: 0.45–0.75). Conclusions Overall, these results suggest decreasing accessibility to the nearest health facility significantly deterred utilisation of all

  14. The utilisation of municipal waste compost for the reclamation of anthropogenic soils: implications on C dynamics.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Said-Pullicino, D.; Bol, R.; Gigliotti, G.

    2009-04-01

    samples show that even after 10 years, amended topsoils were significantly enriched in compost-derived organic matter, confirming that the utilisation of such organic inputs in land reclamation activities has the potential to enhance the C stocks of degraded areas. The addition of compost to the superficial layer also resulted in a significant input of soluble organic compounds subject to leaching along the soil profile. Sorption isotherms for compost-derived water-extractable organic matter onto mineral materials used for landfill covering suggest that sorptive preservation was primarily responsible for the increase in C content and the shift in the C isotopic signature to values similar to that of the applied compost, in the deeper soil horizons over the 10 year experimental period. This was also confirmed by the accumulation of lignin-derived phenolic compounds. Nevertheless, analysis for non-cellulosic carbohydrates in soils samples and their respective water-extractable fractions suggest that a proportion of compost-derived, labile organic matter fraction is leached through the soil profile and potentially lost from the soil system, particularly in the years immediately after compost application.

  15. Learning styles of first-year undergraduate nursing and midwifery students: a cross-sectional survey utilising the Kolb Learning Style Inventory.

    PubMed

    D'Amore, Angelo; James, Santhamma; Mitchell, Eleanor K L

    2012-07-01

    It is important that educators understand their students' learning styles. In this study we investigate the learning styles of first-year undergraduate nursing and midwifery university students and whether these learning styles are influenced by student demographic characteristics. A cross-sectional survey including demographic questions and the Kolb Learning Style Inventory was utilised. There was a 78% response rate (n=345). The majority of first-year students investigated in this study were divergers (29.5%), followed by assimilators (28.8%), accommodators (23.9%) and convergers (17.9%). Female students had a higher reflective observation (RO) score than male students (p=0.0078). Those with English as first language showed a higher active experimentation score (p=0.0543) and a lower concrete experience (CE) score (p=0.0038). Australian citizens and permanent residents had a higher RO score (p=0.0560) and a lower CE score (p=0.0100) than migrants and international students. Nursing/arts students had a higher abstract conceptualisation (AC) score than nursing students (p=0.0013). Students enrolled in 4-5 subject units had a higher AC score than those enrolled in 1-2 units (p=0.0244). Nursing and midwifery students are mainly of the diverger and assimilating learning styles. Some student demographic characteristics show a significant influence on learning styles. This study has teaching and research implications. PMID:21889237

  16. Learning styles of first-year undergraduate nursing and midwifery students: a cross-sectional survey utilising the Kolb Learning Style Inventory.

    PubMed

    D'Amore, Angelo; James, Santhamma; Mitchell, Eleanor K L

    2012-07-01

    It is important that educators understand their students' learning styles. In this study we investigate the learning styles of first-year undergraduate nursing and midwifery university students and whether these learning styles are influenced by student demographic characteristics. A cross-sectional survey including demographic questions and the Kolb Learning Style Inventory was utilised. There was a 78% response rate (n=345). The majority of first-year students investigated in this study were divergers (29.5%), followed by assimilators (28.8%), accommodators (23.9%) and convergers (17.9%). Female students had a higher reflective observation (RO) score than male students (p=0.0078). Those with English as first language showed a higher active experimentation score (p=0.0543) and a lower concrete experience (CE) score (p=0.0038). Australian citizens and permanent residents had a higher RO score (p=0.0560) and a lower CE score (p=0.0100) than migrants and international students. Nursing/arts students had a higher abstract conceptualisation (AC) score than nursing students (p=0.0013). Students enrolled in 4-5 subject units had a higher AC score than those enrolled in 1-2 units (p=0.0244). Nursing and midwifery students are mainly of the diverger and assimilating learning styles. Some student demographic characteristics show a significant influence on learning styles. This study has teaching and research implications.

  17. Maltose and maltotriose utilisation by group I strains of the hybrid lager yeast Saccharomyces pastorianus.

    PubMed

    Magalhães, Frederico; Vidgren, Virve; Ruohonen, Laura; Gibson, Brian

    2016-08-01

    Brewer's wort is a challenging environment for yeast as it contains predominantly α-glucoside sugars. There exist two subgroups of the lager yeast Saccharomyces pastorianus which differ in sugar utilisation. We performed wort fermentations and compared representative strains from both groups with respect to their ability to transport and ferment maltose and maltotriose. Additionally, we mapped the transporters MALx1, AGT1, MPHx and MTT1 by Southern blotting. Contrary to previous observations, group I comprises a diverse set of strains, with varying ability to transport and ferment maltotriose. Of the eight group I strains, three efficiently utilised maltotriose, a property enabled by the presence of transmembrane transporters SeAGT1 and MTT1 A58, a variant of the group I type strain (CBS1513) performed particularly well, taking up maltotriose at a higher rate than maltose and retaining significant transport activity at temperatures as low as 0°C. Analysis of transporter distribution in this strain revealed an increased copy number of the MTT1 gene, which encodes the only permease known with higher affinity for maltotriose than maltose and low temperature dependence for transport. We propose that much of the variation in lager yeast fermentation behaviour is determined by the presence or absence of specific transmembrane transporters. PMID:27364826

  18. Utilisation of health services and geography: deconstructing regional differences in barriers to facility-based delivery in Nepal.

    PubMed

    Hodge, Andrew; Byrne, Abbey; Morgan, Alison; Jimenez-Soto, Eliana

    2015-03-01

    While established that geographical inaccessibility is a key barrier to the utilisation of health services, it remains unknown whether disparities are driven only by limited access to these services, or are also attributable to health behaviour. Significant disparities exist in health outcomes and the coverage of many critical health services between the mountains region of Nepal and the rest of the country, yet the principal factors driving these regional disparities are not well understood. Using national representative data from the 2011 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey, we examine the extent to which observable factors explain the overall differences in the utilisation of maternal health services. We apply nonlinear Blinder-Oaxaca-type decomposition methods to quantify the effect that differences in measurable characteristics have on the regional coverage gap in facility-based delivery. The mean coverage of facility-based deliveries was 18.6 and 36.3 % in the mountains region and the rest of Nepal, respectively. Between 54.8 and 74.1 % of the regional coverage gap was explained by differences in observed characteristics. Factors influencing health behaviours (proxied by mothers' education, TV viewership and tobacco use, and household wealth) and subjective distance to the health facility were the major factors, contributing between 52.9 and 62.5 % of the disparity. Mothers' birth history was also noteworthy. Policies simultaneously addressing access and health behaviours appear necessary to achieve greater coverage and better health outcomes for women and children in isolated areas.

  19. Discovery, utilisation and analysis of credible threats for 2×2 incomplete information games in the Theory of Moves framework

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olsen, Jolie; Sen, Sandip

    2014-04-01

    Steven Brams's [(1994). Theory of moves. Cambridge University Press] Theory of Moves (TOM) is an alternative to traditional game theoretic treatment of real-life interactions, in which players choose strategies based on analysis of future moves and counter-moves that arise if game play commences at a specified start state and either player can choose to move first. In repeated play, players using TOM rationality arrive at nonmyopic equilibria. One advantage of TOM is its ability to model scenarios in which power asymmetries exist between players. In particular, threat power, i.e. the ability of one player to threaten and sustain immediate, globally disadvantageous outcomes to force a desirable result long term, can be utilised to induce Pareto optimal states in games such as Prisoner's Dilemma which result in Pareto-dominated outcomes using traditional methods. Unfortunately, prior work on TOM is limited by an assumption of complete information. This paper presents a mechanism that can be used by a player to utilise threat power when playing a strict, ordinal 2×2 game under incomplete information. We also analyse the benefits of threat power and support in this analysis with empirical evidence.

  20. A simple solution to the problem of effective utilisation of the target material for pulsed laser deposition of thin films

    SciTech Connect

    Kuzanyan, A S; Kuzanyan, A A; Petrosyan, V A; Pilosyan, S Kh; Grasiuk, A Z

    2013-12-31

    The factors determining the efficiency of the target material utilisation for pulsed laser deposition of films are considered. The target volume is calculated, which is evaporated in the ablation process by the focused laser radiation having a rectangular form. The new device is suggested and developed for obtaining thin films by the method of laser deposition, which is specific in the employment of a simple optical system mounted outside a deposition chamber that comprises two lenses and the diaphragm and focuses the laser beam onto a target in the form of a sector-like spot. Thin films of CuO and YBaCuO were deposited with this device. Several deposition cycles revealed that the target material is consumed uniformly from the entire surface of the target. A maximal spread of the target thickness was not greater than ±2% both prior to deposition and after it. The device designed provides a high coefficient of the target material utilisation efficiency. (laser deposition of thin films)

  1. Utilising DualEELS to probe the nanoscale mechanisms of the corrosion of Zircaloy-4 in 350 °C pressurised water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Annand, Kirsty J.; MacLaren, Ian; Gass, Mhairi

    2015-10-01

    Characterisation of materials utilised for fuel cladding in nuclear reactors prior to service is integral in order to understand corrosion mechanisms which would take place in reactor. Zircaloy-4 is one such material of choice for nuclear fuel containment in Pressurised Water Reactors (PWRs). In particular, the metal-oxide interface has been a predominant focus of previous research, however, due to the complex oxidation process of zirconium cladding, there is still no clear understanding of what is present at the interface. Using Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy (STEM) and Dual Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy (DualEELS), we have studied the corrosion of this material under conditions similar to those that could be encountered in service. It is shown that under all conditions, whether during faster oxidation in the early stages, slow growth just prior to the transition to a new growth regime, or in the faster growth that happens after this transition, the surface of the metal below the scale is loaded with oxygen up to around 33 at%. Approaching transition, in conditions of slow growth and slow oxygen supply, an additional metastable suboxide is apparent with a thickness of tens of nm. By studying changes in both chemical composition and dielectric function of the material at the oxide scale - metal interface with nanometre resolution, quantitative mapping could be achieved, clearly showing that this is a suboxide composition of ZrO and a Zr oxidation state close to +2.

  2. Utilisation of Blood Components in Trauma Surgery: A Single-Centre, Retrospective Analysis before and after the Implementation of an Educative PBM Initiative

    PubMed Central

    Geissler, Raoul Georg; Kösters, Clemens; Franz, Dominik; Buddendick, Hubert; Borowski, Matthias; Juhra, Christian; Lange, Matthias; Bunzemeier, Holger; Roeder, Norbert; Sibrowski, Walter; Raschke, Michael J.; Schlenke, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Background The aim of our single-centre retrospective study presented here is to further analyse the utilisation of allogeneic blood components within a 5-year observation period (2009-2013) in trauma surgery (15,457 patients) under the measures of an educational patient blood management (PBM) initiative. Methods After the implementation of the PBM initiative in January 2012, the Institute of Transfusion Medicine und Transplantation Immunology educates surgeons and nurses at the Department of Trauma Surgery to avoid unnecessary blood transfusions. A standardised reporting system was used to document the utilisation of blood components carefully for the most frequent diagnoses and surgical interventions in trauma surgery. These measures served as basis for the implementation of an interdisciplinary systematic exchange of information to foster decision-making processes in favour of patient blood management. Results Since January 2012, the proportion of patients who received a transfusion as well as the number of transfused red blood cell (RBC) (7.3%/6.4%; p = 0.02), fresh frozen plasma (FFP) (1.7%/1.3%; p < 0.05) and platelet (PLT) (1.0%/0.5%; p < 0.001) units were reduced as a result of our PBM initiative. However, among the transfused patients, the number of administered RBC, FFP and PLT units did not decrease significantly. Overall, patients who did not receive transfusions were younger than transfused patients (p = 0.001). The subgroup with the highest probability of blood transfusion administered included patients with intensive care and long-term ventilation (before/after implementation of PBM: RBC 81.5%/75.9%; FFP 33.3%/20.4%; PLT 24.1%/13.0%). Only a total of 60 patients of 531 patients suffering multiple traumas were massively transfused (before/after implementation of PBM: RBC 55.6%/49.8%; FFP 28.4%/20.4%; PLT 17.6%/8.9%). Conclusion According to our educational PBM initiative, at least the proportion of trauma patients who received allogeneic blood

  3. Impact of biogas digesters on wood utilisation and self-reported back pain for women living on rural Kenyan smallholder dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Dohoo, Carolyn; VanLeeuwen, John; Read Guernsey, Judith; Critchley, Kim; Gibson, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Women living on rural Kenyan dairy farms spend significant amounts of time collecting wood for cooking. Biogas digesters, which generate biogas for cooking from the anaerobic decomposition of livestock manure, are an alternative fuel source. The objective of this study was to quantify the quality of life and health benefits of installing biogas digesters on rural Kenyan dairy farms with respect to wood utilisation. Women from 62 farms (31 biogas farms and 31 referent farms) participated in interviews to determine reliance on wood and the impact of biogas digesters on this reliance. Self-reported back pain, time spent collecting wood and money spent on wood were significantly lower (p < 0.01) for the biogas group, compared to referent farms. Multivariable linear regression showed that wood consumption increased by 2 lbs/day for each additional family member living on a farm. For an average family of three people, the addition of one cow was associated with increased wood consumption by 1.0 lb/day on biogas farms but by 4.4 lbs/day on referent farms (significant interaction variable - likely due to additional hot water for cleaning milk collection equipment). Biogas digesters represent a potentially important technology that can reduce reliance on wood fuel and improve health for Kenyan dairy farmers.

  4. 'If you feel that nobody wants you you'll withdraw into your own': Gypsies/Travellers, networks and healthcare utilisation.

    PubMed

    Smith, David; Ruston, Annmarie

    2013-11-01

    Gypsies and Travellers are the unhealthiest group in British society, suffering from higher levels of physical and mental illness, lower life expectancy and with low levels of healthcare utilisation. They also continue to experience the highest level of prejudice and discrimination in society. While studies indicate that social networks play an important role in shaping health beliefs and the response to symptoms, evidence on the influence of networks on health is unclear and contradictory. This article draws on social network theory and research into the relation between discrimination and health to critically examine how networks mediate between collective experiences of racism and health-related behavior. Qualitative interviews with 39 adult Gypsies and Travellers were conducted in the South-East of England to explore the wider structural and institutional context and the influence those contexts play in shaping health beliefs and decisions whether to access formal health services. The findings indicate that the influence networks play in shaping health behaviour is dependent on the particular social context of the group and its status in relation to wider social structures, making generalization problematic.

  5. The removal of sulphate from mine water by precipitation as ettringite and the utilisation of the precipitate as a sorbent for arsenate removal.

    PubMed

    Tolonen, Emma-Tuulia; Hu, Tao; Rämö, Jaakko; Lassi, Ulla

    2016-10-01

    The aim of this research was to investigate sulphate removal from mine water by precipitation as ettringite (Ca6Al2(SO4)3(OH)12·26H2O) and the utilisation of the precipitate as a sorbent for arsenate removal. The mine water sulphate concentration was reduced by 85-90% from the initial 1400 mg/L during ettringite precipitation depending on the treatment method. The precipitation conditions were also simulated with MINEQL + software, and the computational results were compared with the experimental results. The precipitated solids were characterised with X-ray diffraction and a scanning electron microscope. The precipitated solids were tested as sorbents for arsenate removal from the model solution. The arsenic(V) model solution concentration reduced 86-96% from the initial 1.5 mg/L with a 1 g/L sorbent dosage. The effect of initial arsenate concentration on the sorption of arsenate on the precipitate was studied and Langmuir, Freundlich, and Langmuir-Freundlich sorption isotherm models were fitted to the experimental data. The maximum arsenate sorption capacity (qm = 11.2 ± 4.7 mg/g) of the precipitate was obtained from the Langmuir-Freundlich isotherm. The results indicate that the precipitate produced during sulphate removal from mine water by precipitation as ettringite could be further used as a sorbent for arsenate removal.

  6. Accuracy Verification of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Technology for Lower-Limb Prosthetic Research: Utilising Animal Soft Tissue Specimen and Common Socket Casting Materials

    PubMed Central

    Safari, Mohammad Reza; Rowe, Philip; Buis, Arjan

    2012-01-01

    Lower limb prosthetic socket shape and volume consistency can be quantified using MRI technology. Additionally, MRI images of the residual limb could be used as an input data for CAD-CAM technology and finite element studies. However, the accuracy of MRI when socket casting materials are used has to be defined. A number of six, 46 mm thick, cross-sections of an animal leg were used. Three specimens were wrapped with Plaster of Paris (POP) and the other three with commercially available silicone interface liner. Data was obtained by utilising MRI technology and then the segmented images compared to corresponding calliper measurement, photographic imaging, and water suspension techniques. The MRI measurement results were strongly correlated with actual diameter, surface area, and volume measurements. The results show that the selected scanning parameters and the semiautomatic segmentation method are adequate enough, considering the limit of clinical meaningful shape and volume fluctuation, for residual limb volume and the cross-sectional surface area measurements. PMID:22619599

  7. Accuracy verification of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology for lower-limb prosthetic research: utilising animal soft tissue specimen and common socket casting materials.

    PubMed

    Safari, Mohammad Reza; Rowe, Philip; Buis, Arjan

    2012-01-01

    Lower limb prosthetic socket shape and volume consistency can be quantified using MRI technology. Additionally, MRI images of the residual limb could be used as an input data for CAD-CAM technology and finite element studies. However, the accuracy of MRI when socket casting materials are used has to be defined. A number of six, 46 mm thick, cross-sections of an animal leg were used. Three specimens were wrapped with Plaster of Paris (POP) and the other three with commercially available silicone interface liner. Data was obtained by utilising MRI technology and then the segmented images compared to corresponding calliper measurement, photographic imaging, and water suspension techniques. The MRI measurement results were strongly correlated with actual diameter, surface area, and volume measurements. The results show that the selected scanning parameters and the semiautomatic segmentation method are adequate enough, considering the limit of clinical meaningful shape and volume fluctuation, for residual limb volume and the cross-sectional surface area measurements.

  8. Understanding where policies and decisions can go wrong: utilising a 360 analysis model as a proactive reputation management strategy.

    PubMed

    Cwiak, Carol L

    2014-01-01

    An organisation's reputation is its most relevant asset. The perceptions of the various audiences with which an organisation interacts both directly and indirectly can enhance or destroy that reputation. Due to the critical role these audiences play in an organisation's reputation, they should be actively considered as a part of an organisation's reputation management strategy. This paper introduces the 360 analysis model, which considers the benefits, detriments and potential fallout in regard to different audiences when creating policy or making important organisational decisions. The model's goal is to foster well-considered policy and decisions that proactively protect an organisation's reputation. The model is also designed to be used as a research construct that can be utilised in the expansion of the reputation management literature in regard to heterogeneity and dynamics within and across audiences that can have an impact on an organisation's reputation.

  9. Understanding where policies and decisions can go wrong: utilising a 360 analysis model as a proactive reputation management strategy.

    PubMed

    Cwiak, Carol L

    2014-01-01

    An organisation's reputation is its most relevant asset. The perceptions of the various audiences with which an organisation interacts both directly and indirectly can enhance or destroy that reputation. Due to the critical role these audiences play in an organisation's reputation, they should be actively considered as a part of an organisation's reputation management strategy. This paper introduces the 360 analysis model, which considers the benefits, detriments and potential fallout in regard to different audiences when creating policy or making important organisational decisions. The model's goal is to foster well-considered policy and decisions that proactively protect an organisation's reputation. The model is also designed to be used as a research construct that can be utilised in the expansion of the reputation management literature in regard to heterogeneity and dynamics within and across audiences that can have an impact on an organisation's reputation. PMID:24854733

  10. Income-related inequity in healthcare utilisation among individuals with cardiovascular disease in England-accounting for vertical inequity.

    PubMed

    Vallejo-Torres, Laura; Morris, Stephen

    2013-05-01

    Economic analyses of equity which focus solely on horizontal inequity offer a partial assessment of socioeconomic inequity in healthcare use. We analyse income-related inequity in cardiovascular disease-related healthcare utilisation by individuals reporting cardiovascular disease in England, including both horizontal and vertical aspects. For the analysis of vertical inequity, we use target groups to estimate the appropriate relationship between healthcare needs and use. We find that including vertical inequity considerations may lead us to draw different conclusions about the nature and extent of income-related inequity. After accounting for vertical inequity in addition to horizontal inequity, there is no longer evidence of inequity favouring the poor for nurse visits, whereas there is some evidence that doctor visits and inpatient stays are concentrated among richer individuals. The estimates of income-related inequity for outpatient visits, electrocardiography tests and heart surgery become even more pro-rich when accounting for vertical inequity.

  11. A new caffeine biosynthetic pathway in tea leaves: utilisation of adenosine released from the S-adenosyl-L-methionine cycle.

    PubMed

    Koshiishi, C; Kato, A; Yama, S; Crozier, A; Ashihara, H

    2001-06-15

    The four-step caffeine biosynthetic pathway includes three methylation steps that utilise S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM) as the methyl donor. In the process SAM is converted to S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine (SAH) which in turn is hydrolysed to L-homocysteine and adenosine. Significant amounts of radioactivity from [methyl-(14)C]methionine and [methyl-(14)C]SAM were incorporated into theobromine and caffeine in young tea leaf segments, and very high SAH hydrolase activity was found in cell-free extracts from young tea leaves. Substantial amounts of radioactivity from [adenosyl-(14)C]SAH were also recovered as theobromine and caffeine in tea leaf segments, indicating that adenosine derived from SAH is utilised for the synthesis of the purine ring of caffeine. From the profiles of activity of related enzymes in tea leaf extracts, it is proposed that the major route from SAM to caffeine is a SAM-->SAH-->adenosine-->adenine-->AMP-->IMP-->XMP-->xanthosine-->7-methylxanthosine-->7-methylxanthine-->theobromine-->caffeine pathway. In addition, direct adenosine kinase-catalysed formation of AMP from adenosine may participate as an alternative minor route. The activity of two of the three N-methyltransferase activities involved in caffeine biosynthesis and part of the activities of SAH hydrolase, adenosine nucleosidase, adenine phosphoribosyltransferase and adenosine kinase were located in tea chloroplasts. In contrast, no detectable activity of SAM synthetase was associated with the purified chloroplast fraction. This is a first demonstration that the purine skeleton of caffeine is synthesised from adenosine released from the SAM cycle.

  12. Fecundity regulation in relation to habitat utilisation of two sympatric flounder (Platichtys flesus) populations in the brackish water Baltic Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nissling, Anders; Thorsen, Anders; da Silva, Filipa F. G.

    2015-01-01

    Two populations of flounder (Platichtys flesus) with different life history traits inhabit the brackish water Baltic Sea. Both types share feeding areas in coastal waters during summer-autumn but utilise different habitats for spawning in spring, namely offshore spawning with pelagic eggs and coastal spawning with demersal eggs respectively. Fecundity regulation by atresia was assessed as prevalence (portion of fish with atresia) and intensity (calculated as the average intensity of atresia in these fish) during the reproductive cycle following start of gonad development in the autumn up to spawning in spring, and evaluated in relation to fish condition (Fulton's condition factor reflecting energy reserves of the fish) and feeding incidence of the respective population. Peaking in winter (December-February), fecundity regulation was significantly higher for coastal spawning flounder than for flounder spawning offshore. For coastal spawners, the prevalence was 45-90% with an intensity of 6.4-9.3% vs. 0-25% and an intensity of 2.1-3.4% for offshore spawners during winter. Further, fecundity regulation ceased prior to spawning for offshore spawners but continued for coastal spawners. For coastal spawners, the prevalence was 12-29% and an intensity of 2.5-6.1% during spawning. The change in fish condition was strongly related to feeding incidence and differed between populations. As feeding ceased, condition of offshore spawners decreased during winter up to spawning, whereas condition of coastal spawners decreased during autumn but was maintained as feeding started again prior to spawning. Thus, habitat utilisation according to spawning strategy affects the timing of fecundity down-regulation reflecting availability of resources, namely limited food resources in deep areas and higher availability in coastal areas. Offshore spawning flounder display characteristics typical for a capital spawner with ceasing of feeding and oocyte down-regulation well before spawning

  13. Utilisation and Further Development of Space Science Results in the ESA SSA Programme Space Weather Service Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glover, Alexi; Luntama, Juha-Pekka; Keil, Ralf

    2016-04-01

    ESA SSA Programme is approaching the end of its second period. Service development activities within the current period aim at advancing the SSA SWE Service Network from the initial utilisation of existing European assets toward development of these and new assets together with the associated coordination infrastructure necessary to provide consistently reliable services. The SSA SWE Service Network is based on a federated architecture where service provision is carried out by Expert Service Centres in the Programme Member States with overall coordination and helpdesk functions provided by a central node and coordination centre located at the Space Pole in Brussels, Belgium. The SSA SWE Service Network builds on the wealth of space weather expertise available within the Member States, and consequently, as the network continues to develop, emphasis will continue to be placed on building services based on demonstrated space science advances in key areas such as those highlighted by the COSPAR-ILWS Space Weather Roadmap, published in 2015. Activities supported by programmes including the ESA technology programmes, EC FP7 and H2020 have all demonstrated promising results, and the SSA SWE Network is actively investigating their potential application to SSA SWE Customer Requirements, and in many cases already adopting these as part of the suite of products provided via the Network to its registered users. This presentation will provide an overview of recent advances in the SSA SWE Service Network, emphasising the utilisation of scientific results within a pre-operational context. The presentation will show the layout of the federated Expert Service Centres, highlighting ongoing and upcoming service developments and provide a perspective on the service development plans for the next phase of the programme.

  14. Utilising an LC-MS/MS-based multi-biomarker approach to assess mycotoxin exposure in the Bangkok metropolitan area and surrounding provinces.

    PubMed

    Warth, Benedikt; Petchkongkaew, Awanwee; Sulyok, Michael; Krska, Rudolf

    2014-01-01

    Human exposures to mycotoxins through dietary intake are a major health hazard and may result in various pathophysiological effects. Although Thailand is a country at increased risk due to its climatic conditions, no comprehensive dataset is available to perform proper exposure assessment of its population with regard to mycotoxins. Therefore, this pilot study was conducted to investigate and evaluate the exposure levels of major mycotoxins (aflatoxin B₁, ochratoxin A, fumonisins, zearalenone and trichothecenes). Sixty first-morning urine samples were collected from healthy volunteers who live in the Bangkok metropolitan area and surrounding provinces (Pathumthani, Nonthaburi, Samutprakarn and Samutsakorn). Urine samples were analysed by a LC-MS/MS-based multi-biomarker method following a so-called 'dilute and shoot' approach. Results generally indicated low mycotoxin exposures in most individuals through the determination of the four biomarkers that were detected in urine samples, i.e. aflatoxin M₁, ochratoxin A (OTA), as well as the deoxynivalenol (DON) metabolites DON-3-glucuronide and DON-15-glucuronide in 10 of 60 individuals. The maximum concentrations were used to estimate the daily intake confirming that none of the individuals exceeded the tolerable daily intake (TDI) of DON (maximum 26% of TDI) or OTA (maximum 22% of TDI). However, the maximum exposure of aflatoxin B₁, estimated to be 0.91 µg (kg bw)⁻¹ day⁻¹, should raise some concerns and suggests further studies utilising a more sensitive method. Low exposure to Fusarium toxins was also confirmed by the absence of zearalenone, α-zearalanol, β-zearalanol and zearalenone-14-glucuronide as well as T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, nivalenol and free DON. This is the first multi-mycotoxin biomarker study performed in Southeast Asia. PMID:25268629

  15. Utilisation of pH stacking in conjunction with a highly absorbing chromophore, 5-aminofluorescein, to improve the sensitivity of capillary electrophoresis for carbohydrate analysis.

    PubMed

    Kazarian, Artaches A; Hilder, Emily F; Breadmore, Michael C

    2008-07-18

    This study explores the use of pH stacking in conjunction with 5-aminofluorescein as a derivatization agent for the sensitive analysis of simple sugars such as glucose, lactose and maltotriose by capillary electrophoresis (CE). The derivatization agent was selected on the basis of its extremely high molar absorptivity, its compatibility with a 488nm light-emitting diode (LED) and the fact that it has two ionizable groups making it compatible with on-line stacking using a dynamic pH junction. The influence of both acetic and formic acids at concentrations of 0.19, 0.019 and 0.0019molL(-1) were investigated with regard to both derivatization efficiency and the ability to stack using a dynamic pH junction. Superior sensitivity and resolution was obtained in formic acid over acetic acid. Substantially lower peaks were obtained with 0.19molL(-1) formic acid when compared to 0.019 and 0.0019molL(-1) concentrations, which was confirmed by computer simulation studies to be due to the inadequate movement of the pH boundary for stacking. Further simulation studies combined with experimental data showed the separation with the best resolution and greatest sensitivity when the carbohydrates were derivatized with the 0.095molL(-1) formic acid. Utilisation of stacking via dynamic pH junction mode in conjunction with LED detection enabled efficiencies of 150,000 plates and detection limits in the order of 8.5x10(-8)molL(-1) for simple sugars such as glucose, lactose and maltotriose hydrate. The current system also demonstrates a 515 times improvement in sensitivity when compared to using a normal deuterium lamp, and 16 times improvement over other systems using LEDs.

  16. The Client Company Marginally Utilises the Knowledge of Highly Skilled Temporary Staff

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Augustsson, Gunnar

    2016-01-01

    This study is based on the presumption that there is often an underuse of temporary staff in client companies (CC) with highly skilled professionals. The study combines theories of the flexible organisation and a sociocultural perspective on learning within the framework of an inter-organisational context. The data are based partly on 17…

  17. Mission to the Moon: Europe's priorities for the scientific exploration and utilisation of the Moon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Battrick, Bruce; Barron, C.

    1992-06-01

    A study to determine Europe's potential role in the future exploration and utilization of the Moon is presented. To establish the scientific justifications the Lunar Study Steering Group (LSSG) was established reflecting all scientific disciplines benefitting from a lunar base (Moon studies, astronomy, fusion, life sciences, etc.). Scientific issues were divided into three main areas: science of the Moon, including all investigations concerning the Moon as a planetary body; science from the Moon, using the Moon as a platform and therefore including observatories in the broadest sense; science on the Moon, including not only questions relating to human activities in space, but also the development of artificial ecosystems beyond the Earth. Science of the Moon focuses on geographical, geochemical and geological observations of the Earth-Moon system. Science from the Moon takes advantage of the stable lunar ground, its atmosphere free sky and, on the far side, its radio quiet environment. The Moon provides an attractive platform for the observation and study of the Universe. Two techniques that can make unique cause of the lunar platform are ultraviolet to submillimeter interferometric imaging, and very low frequency astronomy. One of the goals of life sciences studies (Science on the Moon) is obviously to provide the prerequisite information for establishing a manned lunar base. This includes studies of human physiology under reduced gravity, radiation protection and life support systems, and feasibility studies based on existing hardware. The overall recommendations are essentially to set up specific study teams for those fields judged to be the most promising for Europe, with the aim of providing more detailed scientific and technological specifications. It is also suggested that the scope of the overall study activities be expanded in order to derive mission scenarios for a viable ESA lunar exploration program and to consider economic, legal and policy matters

  18. Demographic profile and extent of healthcare resource utilisation of patients with severe traumatic brain injury: still a major public health problem

    PubMed Central

    Wee, Jing Zhong; Yang, Yun Rui Jasmine; Lee, Qian Yi Ruth; Cao, Kelly; Chong, Chin Ted

    2016-01-01

    INTRODUCTION Trauma is the fifth principal cause of death in Singapore, with traumatic brain injury (TBI) being the leading specific subordinate cause. METHODS This study was an eight-year retrospective review of the demographic profiles of patients with severe TBI who were admitted to the neurointensive care unit (NICU) of the National Neuroscience Institute at Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Singapore, between 2004 and 2011. RESULTS A total of 780 TBI patients were admitted during the study period; 365 (46.8%) patients sustained severe TBI (i.e. Glasgow Coma Scale score ≤ 8), with the majority (75.3%) being male. The ages of patients with severe TBI ranged from 14–93 years, with a bimodal preponderance in young adults (i.e. 21–40 years) and elderly persons (i.e. > 60 years). Motor vehicle accidents (48.8%) and falls (42.5%) were the main mechanisms of injury. Invasive line monitoring was frequently employed; invasive arterial blood pressure monitoring and central venous pressure monitoring were used in 81.6% and 60.0% of the patients, respectively, while intracranial pressure (ICP) measurement was required in 47.4% of the patients. The use of tiered therapy to control ICP (e.g. sedation, osmotherapy, cerebrospinal fluid drainage, moderate hyperventilation and barbiturate-induced coma) converged with international practices. CONCLUSION The high-risk groups for severe TBI were young adults and elderly persons involved in motor vehicle accidents and falls, respectively. In the NICU, the care of patients with severe TBI requires heavy utilisation of resources. The healthcare burden of these patients extends beyond the acute critical care phase. PMID:26768061

  19. Merging and scoring molecular interactions utilising existing community standards: tools, use-cases and a case study

    PubMed Central

    Villaveces, J. M.; Jiménez, R. C.; Porras, P.; del-Toro, N.; Duesbury, M.; Dumousseau, M.; Orchard, S.; Choi, H.; Ping, P.; Zong, N. C.; Askenazi, M.; Habermann, B. H.; Hermjakob, Henning

    2015-01-01

    The evidence that two molecules interact in a living cell is often inferred from multiple different experiments. Experimental data is captured in multiple repositories, but there is no simple way to assess the evidence of an interaction occurring in a cellular environment. Merging and scoring of data are commonly required operations after querying for the details of specific molecular interactions, to remove redundancy and assess the strength of accompanying experimental evidence. We have developed both a merging algorithm and a scoring system for molecular interactions based on the proteomics standard initiative–molecular interaction standards. In this manuscript, we introduce these two algorithms and provide community access to the tool suite, describe examples of how these tools are useful to selectively present molecular interaction data and demonstrate a case where the algorithms were successfully used to identify a systematic error in an existing dataset. PMID:25652942

  20. Utilising Enterprise Risk Management Strategies to Develop a Governance and Operations Framework for a New Research Complex: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clyde-Smith, Jodi

    2014-01-01

    Enterprise risk management strategies were used to develop a regulatory and operational framework for a new multi-partner Research Institute that will house up to 900 staff from four different institutions in Queensland, Australia. The Institute will operate in a business environment while functioning as a research resource for the higher…

  1. Merging and scoring molecular interactions utilising existing community standards: tools, use-cases and a case study.

    PubMed

    Villaveces, J M; Jiménez, R C; Porras, P; Del-Toro, N; Duesbury, M; Dumousseau, M; Orchard, S; Choi, H; Ping, P; Zong, N C; Askenazi, M; Habermann, B H; Hermjakob, Henning

    2015-01-01

    The evidence that two molecules interact in a living cell is often inferred from multiple different experiments. Experimental data is captured in multiple repositories, but there is no simple way to assess the evidence of an interaction occurring in a cellular environment. Merging and scoring of data are commonly required operations after querying for the details of specific molecular interactions, to remove redundancy and assess the strength of accompanying experimental evidence. We have developed both a merging algorithm and a scoring system for molecular interactions based on the proteomics standard initiative-molecular interaction standards. In this manuscript, we introduce these two algorithms and provide community access to the tool suite, describe examples of how these tools are useful to selectively present molecular interaction data and demonstrate a case where the algorithms were successfully used to identify a systematic error in an existing dataset.

  2. BMI upon discharge from hospital and its relationship with survival: an observational study utilising linked patient records

    PubMed Central

    Ray, Daniel; Falcaro, Milena; McNulty, David; Shallcross, Laura; Wood, John; Pagano, Domenico

    2016-01-01

    Objective Current advice for patients being discharged from hospital suggests a body mass index of 18.5 to 24 kgm−2, although this aspirational target may often not be achieved. We examined the relationship between body mass index on discharge from hospital and subsequent mortality over a maximum follow-up of 3.8 years. Design We conducted a survival analysis using linked hospital records data with national hospital episode statistics and national death certification data. Participants & Setting The analysis included adult patients who were admitted to University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust for a period of over 24 h during 2011, excluding day cases and regular day case attenders. Main outcome measures The relationship between body mass index and mortality at medium term was estimated separately in both men and women, after accounting for case-mix. Results For both males and females, the relationship between body mass index at discharge and the loge hazard of death was strongly non-linear (p = 0.0002 for females and p < 0.0001 for males) and predictive (both p < 0.0001). In all models, the optimal body mass index range associated with best survival was 25 to 35 kgm−2, with a sharp increase in risk for lower body mass index. Conclusions There was little evidence to support current aspirational body mass index targets in the discharge population. Hospitals should ensure adequate nutrition especially among those with a reduced body mass index. PMID:27053359

  3. The utilisation of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) among ethnic minorities in South Korea

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Race has been reported to affect the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), but there is very little research on the use of CAM by ethnicity in Korea. This study explores the prevalence of CAM use among ethnic minorities in South Korea. Methods The design is a descriptive and cross-sectional study. A convenience sample of ethnic minorities was recruited from two public healthcare centres in Gyeonggi province. The survey instrument included 37 questions regarding CAM use, factors influencing use of CAM, self-health management, and the socio-demographic profile of study participants. Results Sixty-two percent of study participants reported the use of CAM. Multivitamins (53.3%), acupuncture (48.9%), and traditional Korean herbal medicine (38.9%) were popular CAM modalities in our sample. Other notable CAM modalities included herbal plants, therapeutic massage, and moxibustion therapy. The majority of CAM users (52.2%) received CAM services to treat diseases or as a secondary treatment while receiving conventional care. Having positive perceptions toward the effectiveness of CAM was a major determining factor in CAM use. Conclusions Physicians need to be aware of the fact that many ethnic minorities use CAM therapies. Many CAM users reported that they want doctors to know about their CAM use and have a basic understanding of traditional medicine in their home country. Overcoming language and cultural barriers will help reduce unwanted medical complications. High prevalence of CAM use among ethnic minorities in our study warrants further studies using larger sample population. PMID:24641983

  4. Determination of body composition in conscious adult female Wistar utilising total body electrical conductivity.

    PubMed

    Dickinson, K; North, T J; Telford, G; Smith, S; Brammer, R; Jones, R B; Heal, D J

    2001-01-01

    Total body electrical conductivity (TOBEC) is a noninvasive method for estimating fat free mass (FFM) in live animals. In this study, we have evaluated the use of the Em-Scan SA-3000, which is claimed by the manufacturers to perform better than earlier analysers. Previous studies in rats using these earlier versions of the TOBEC analyser have always used anaesthesia to minimise movement artefacts. As repeated anaesthesia also has the potential to induce artefacts by disrupting food intake, for example, we have also attempted to determine if this TOBEC analyser can be used to predict body composition in conscious adult weight-stable female Wistar rats. A simplified cafeteria diet was used to produce large variations in body composition (40-350 g fat/carcass) and a full chemical body composition analysis was performed to generate a TOBEC calibration equation. The TOBEC parameter was more strongly correlated to FFM (r(2)=.785) than it was to body weight (r(2)=.669) or other body composition parameters. Using the TOBEC calibration equation to predict fat mass on these data, there was an excellent correlation with the value obtained by chemical analyses (r(2)=.952, slope=0.958). To determine if the TOBEC calibration equation derived from this calibration study would then be useful for the routine estimation of body composition an additional, validation study was performed. This validation study was performed 6 months later, used an independent group of obese female Wistar rats and was undertaken by different TOBEC operators. This validation study, again, showed a good correlation between the TOBEC- and chemical-derived fat mass (r(2)=.918, slope=1.003) indicating stability of the calibration equation with time and independence from operator. We therefore conclude that it is possible to meaningfully estimate body fat changes in conscious rats using this TOBEC analysis system.

  5. L’utilisation du prémélange de monensin chez les vaches laitières : un suivi simple et essentiel pour s’assurer d’une utilisation adéquate

    PubMed Central

    Dubuc, Jocelyn; Baril, Jean; DesCôteaux, Luc

    2009-01-01

    Le prémélange de monensin est utilisé fréquemment sur les fermes laitières canadiennes. L’ingrédient actif de ce produit est le monensin sodique. Bien que son utilisation chez les vaches laitières soit sécuritaire, des cas de surdose ont été rapportés à la suite de consommation de niveaux de monensin plus élevés que ceux recommandés. Un suivi hebdomadaire du pourcentage de matières grasses du réservoir de lait de la ferme devrait être fait de routine suite à la livraison d’aliment médicamenteux contenant du monensin pour détecter rapidement les situations de surdose. L’observation d’une baisse soudaine de la consommation volontaire de matière sèche et l’apparition de diarrhée dans un troupeau sont d’autres signes cliniques de surdose de monensin. Une détection rapide de ces cas permettra de corriger la situation. PMID:19721781

  6. Sn-2-monoacylglycerol, not glycerol, is preferentially utilised for triacylglycerol and phosphatidylcholine biosynthesis in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar L.) intestine.

    PubMed

    Oxley, Anthony; Jutfelt, Fredrik; Sundell, Kristina; Olsen, Rolf Erik

    2007-01-01

    Pathways of lipid resynthesis in the intestine of fish are relatively unknown. Various reports have suggested the existence of both sn-1,3-specific (pancreatic) and non-specific (bile salt-activated) lipase activity operating on dietary triacylglycerol (TAG) in the intestinal lumen of fish during digestion. Thus, sn-2-monoacylglycerol (2-MAG) and glycerol, respective hydrolytic products of each lipase, are absorbed and utilised for glycerolipid synthesis in enterocytes via two alternative routes: monoacylglycerol (MAG) and glycerol-3-phosphate (G3P) pathways. Despite different precursors, both pathways converge at the production of sn-1,2-diacylglycerol (1,2-DAG) where TAG or phosphatidylcholine (PC) synthesis can occur. To elucidate the relative activities of MAG and G3P pathways in Atlantic salmon enterocytes, intestinal segments were mounted in Ussing chambers where equimolar mixtures of sn-2-oleoyl-[1,2,3-(3)H]glycerol (2-MAG) and [(14)C(U)]glycerol, plus unlabelled 16:0 and 18:2n-6 as exogenous fatty acid sources, were delivered in bile salt-containing Ringer solution to the mucosa. The MAG pathway predominated, over the G3P pathway, synthesizing ca. 95% of total TAG and ca. 80% of total PC after a 3 h incubation period at 10 degrees C. Further, the 1,2-DAG branch point into TAG or PC was polarised towards TAG synthesis (6:1) via the MAG pathway but more evenly distributed between TAG and PC (1:1) via the G3P pathway. Effect of long-chain saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids on the synthesized TAG/PC ratio was assessed by individually exchanging 16:0, 18:1n-9 or 18:2n-6, for 16:0+18:2n-6, in mucosal solutions. TAG synthesis was influenced considerably more than PC synthesis, via either pathway, by exogenous fatty acids utilised. 18:1n-9 significantly stimulated TAG synthesis via the MAG pathway yielding a TAG/PC ratio of 12:1. Alternatively, 18:2n-6 stimulated TAG synthesis the most via the G3P pathway (TAG/PC=4:1). 16:0 significantly

  7. Being an "Agent Provocateur": Utilising Online Spaces for Teacher Professional Development in Virtual Simulation Games

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    deNoyelles, Aimee; Raider-Roth, Miriam

    2016-01-01

    This article details the results of an action research study which investigated how teachers used online learning community spaces to develop and support their teaching and learning of the Jewish Court of All Time (JCAT), a web-mediated, character-playing, simulation game that engages participants with social, historical and cultural curricula.…

  8. The Role of Personal Experience and Social Interaction in Knowledge Creation and Utilisation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Handzic, Meliha; Tolhurst, Denise

    This paper reports the results of an empirical examination of the effects of personal experience and social interaction on individual knowledge and performance in a specific decision making task context. The study revealed a differential effect of increased experience on the quality of participants decisions. In particular, increased experience…

  9. Utilising a Construct of Teacher Capacity to Examine National Curriculum Reform in Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhang, Qinqiong; Stephens, Max

    2013-01-01

    This study involving 120 Australian and Chinese teachers introduces a construct of teacher capacity to analyse how teachers help students connect arithmetic learning and emerging algebraic thinking. Four criteria formed the basis of our construct of teacher capacity: knowledge of mathematics, interpretation of the intentions of official curriculum…

  10. The Applied Music Lesson: Teaching Gifted and Talented Students Utilising Principles of Comprehensive Musicianship

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heavner, Tracy

    2005-01-01

    Comprehensive musicianship is a term used to describe the intradisciplinary study of music. The comprehensive musicianship approach is closely related to Gestalt psychology in that music is approached as a totality, with a concern for constituent parts and how they relate to the whole (Willoughby, 1971). The concept of integration is central to…

  11. From Attitudes to Practice: Utilising Inclusive Teaching Strategies in Kenyan Primary Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elder, Brent C.; Damiani, Michelle L.; Oswago, Benson O.

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to provide evidence of Kenyan primary school teachers using inclusive teaching strategies in a rural setting with many known barriers to the development of a sustainable inclusive education system. This qualitative study examines teachers' uses of inclusive teaching strategies in primary schools following a series of…

  12. Assessing meiofaunal variation among individuals utilising morphological and molecular approaches: an example using the Tardigrada

    PubMed Central

    Sands, Chester J; Convey, Peter; Linse, Katrin; McInnes, Sandra J

    2008-01-01

    Background Meiofauna – multicellular animals captured between sieve size 45 μm and 1000 μm – are a fundamental component of terrestrial, and marine benthic ecosystems, forming an integral element of food webs, and playing a critical roll in nutrient recycling. Most phyla have meiofaunal representatives and studies of these taxa impact on a wide variety of sub-disciplines as well as having social and economic implications. However, studies of variation in meiofauna are presented with several important challenges. Isolating individuals from a sample substrate is a time consuming process, and identification requires increasingly scarce taxonomic expertise. Finding suitable morphological characters in many of these organisms is often difficult even for experts. Molecular markers are extremely useful for identifying variation in morphologically conserved organisms. However, for many species markers need to be developed de novo, while DNA can often only be extracted from pooled samples in order to obtain sufficient quantity and quality. Importantly, multiple independent markers are required to reconcile gene evolution with species evolution. In this primarily methodological paper we provide a proof of principle of a novel and effective protocol for the isolation of meiofauna from an environmental sample. We also go on to illustrate examples of the implications arising from subsequent screening for genetic variation at the level of the individual using ribosomal, mitochondrial and single copy nuclear markers. Results To isolate individual tardigrades from their habitat substrate we used a non-toxic density gradient media that did not interfere with downstream biochemical processes. Using a simple DNA release technique and nested polymerase chain reaction with universal primers we were able amplify multi-copy and, to some extent, single copy genes from individual tardigrades. Maximum likelihood trees from ribosomal 18S, mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit 1, and

  13. Resource utilisation and direct costs in patients with recently diagnosed fibromyalgia who are offered one of three different interventions in a randomised pragmatic trial.

    PubMed

    van Eijk-Hustings, Yvonne; Kroese, Mariëlle; Creemers, An; Landewé, Robert; Boonen, Annelies

    2016-05-01

    The purpose of this study is to understand the course of costs over a 2-year period in a cohort of recently diagnosed fibromyalgia (FM) patients receiving different treatment strategies. Following the diagnosis, patients were randomly assigned to a multidisciplinary programme (MD), aerobic exercise (AE) or usual care (UC) without being aware of alternative interventions. Time between diagnosis and start of treatment varied between patients. Resource utilisation, health care costs and costs for patients and families were collected through cost diaries. Mixed linear model analyses (MLM) examined the course of costs over time. Linear regression was used to explore predictors of health care costs in the post-intervention period. Two hundred three participants, 90 % women, mean (SD) age 41.7 (9.8) years, were included in the cohort. Intervention costs per patient varied from €864 to 1392 for MD and were €121 for AE. Health care costs (excluding intervention costs) decreased after diagnosis, but before the intervention in each group, and increased again afterwards to the level close to the diagnostic phase. In contrast, patient and family costs slightly increased over time in all groups without initial decrease immediately after diagnosis. Annualised health care costs post-intervention varied between €1872 and 2310 per patient and were predicted by worse functioning and high health care costs at diagnosis. In patients with FM, health care costs decreased following the diagnosis by a rheumatologist. Offering patients a specific intervention after diagnosis incurred substantial costs while having only marginal effects on costs. PMID:26409883

  14. Genomic and metagenomic surveys of hydrogenase distribution indicate H2 is a widely utilised energy source for microbial growth and survival.

    PubMed

    Greening, Chris; Biswas, Ambarish; Carere, Carlo R; Jackson, Colin J; Taylor, Matthew C; Stott, Matthew B; Cook, Gregory M; Morales, Sergio E

    2016-03-01

    Recent physiological and ecological studies have challenged the long-held belief that microbial metabolism of molecular hydrogen (H2) is a niche process. To gain a broader insight into the importance of microbial H2 metabolism, we comprehensively surveyed the genomic and metagenomic distribution of hydrogenases, the reversible enzymes that catalyse the oxidation and evolution of H2. The protein sequences of 3286 non-redundant putative hydrogenases were curated from publicly available databases. These metalloenzymes were classified into multiple groups based on (1) amino acid sequence phylogeny, (2) metal-binding motifs, (3) predicted genetic organisation and (4) reported biochemical characteristics. Four groups (22 subgroups) of [NiFe]-hydrogenase, three groups (6 subtypes) of [FeFe]-hydrogenases and a small group of [Fe]-hydrogenases were identified. We predict that this hydrogenase diversity supports H2-based respiration, fermentation and carbon fixation processes in both oxic and anoxic environments, in addition to various H2-sensing, electron-bifurcation and energy-conversion mechanisms. Hydrogenase-encoding genes were identified in 51 bacterial and archaeal phyla, suggesting strong pressure for both vertical and lateral acquisition. Furthermore, hydrogenase genes could be recovered from diverse terrestrial, aquatic and host-associated metagenomes in varying proportions, indicating a broad ecological distribution and utilisation. Oxygen content (pO2) appears to be a central factor driving the phylum- and ecosystem-level distribution of these genes. In addition to compounding evidence that H2 was the first electron donor for life, our analysis suggests that the great diversification of hydrogenases has enabled H2 metabolism to sustain the growth or survival of microorganisms in a wide range of ecosystems to the present day. This work also provides a comprehensive expanded system for classifying hydrogenases and identifies new prospects for investigating H2

  15. Insurance covered and non-covered complementary and alternative medicine utilisation among adults in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Shih, Shu-Fang; Lew-Ting, Chih-Yin; Chang, Hsing-Yi; Kuo, Ken N

    2008-10-01

    Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) has been characterized by prevalence, cost, and patterns of use. Factors determining its utilization have also been analyzed, either generally or for specific diseases, but few studies have considered the determinants of its frequency of use. Taiwan's pluralistic health care system and comprehensive insurance program covering Western medicine and traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) provide an interesting case to explore what forms of CAM people use, why and how often they use them. By using Taiwan's 2001 National Health Interview Survey and linking it with National Health Insurance (NHI) claims data, this study aims to investigate the socio-demographic, economic, behavioral and health determinants of use and frequency of use for both non-covered and covered CAM in Taiwan. The former consists of services practiced by non-regulated or non-NHI contracted practitioners and the latter includes those TCM covered by NHI. Our study showed that the determinants of using non-covered and covered CAM differ with respect to socio-demographic and behavioral factors, and health needs. Our evidence suggests that future CAM research must delineate between use and frequency of use to better understand the underlying factors contributing to initiation and continuity of CAM use.

  16. Methodological issues in life cycle assessment of mixed-culture polyhydroxyalkanoate production utilising waste as feedstock.

    PubMed

    Heimersson, Sara; Morgan-Sagastume, Fernando; Peters, Gregory M; Werker, Alan; Svanström, Magdalena

    2014-06-25

    Assessing the environmental performance of emerging technologies using life cycle assessment (LCA) can be challenging due to a lack of data in relation to technologies, application areas or other life cycle considerations, or a lack of LCA methodology that address the specific concerns. Nevertheless, LCA can be a valuable tool in the environmental optimisation in the technology development phase. One emerging technology is the mixed-culture production of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs). PHA production by pure microbial cultures has been developed and assessed in several LCAs during the previous decade. Recent developments within mixed-culture PHA production call for environmental assessment to guide in technology development. Mixed-culture PHA production can use the organic content in wastewater as a feedstock; the production may then be integrated with wastewater treatment (WWT) processes. This means that mixed-culture PHA is produced as a by-product from services in the WWT. This article explores different methodological challenges for LCA of mixed-culture PHA production using organic material in wastewater as feedstock. LCAs of both pure- and mixed-culture PHA production were reviewed. Challenges, similarities and differences when assessing PHA production by mixed- or pure-cultures were identified and the resulting implications for methodological choices in LCA were evaluated and illustrated, using a case study with mixed- and pure-culture PHA model production systems, based on literature data. Environmental impacts of processes producing multiple products or services need to be allocated between the different products or services. Such situations occur both in feedstock production and when the studied system is providing multiple functions. The selection of allocation method is shown to determine the LCA results. The type of data used, for electricity in the energy system, is shown to be important for the results, which indicates, a strong regional dependency of

  17. Potentiel de l'utilisation des melanges hydrocarbures/alcools pour les moteurs a allumage commande

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Broustail, Guillaume

    For the past few years, the oil stock decrease encourages the different countries to increase their energy independence. Moreover, reducing the environmental impact of transportation became one of the priorities of our society. In this way, European emissions standards are stricter while several pollutants have been identified to have a negative impact on health and the environment. To answer this double problem, the use of alcohols biofuels in sparkignition engines is one the promising ways. The European Union have already taken a small step in that direction by allowing a maximum of 10% of ethanol into gasoline. As well as ethanol is already marketed, Biobutanol, a 2nd generation biofuel, appears as a serious candidate with a strong potential for a spark-ignition engines use. The objective of this dissertation is to study the potential of the iso-octane/butanol blends use in spark-ignition engines, in terms of performance and pollutants emissions. Moreover, these results are compared to iso-octane/ethanol blends. The heat release in spark-ignition engine is piloted for a part by laminar burning velocity. This characteristic was studied experimentally and numerically for different initial conditions (pressure and equivalence ratio) in a constant volume bomb. Then, the early flame kernel growth was studied in an spark-ignition single cylinder engine equipped with optical accesses. Those results were correlated with the results on the laminar burning velocity. Finally, regulated and non-regulated pollutants emissions and engine performance were investigated in a spark-ignition single cylinder engine. A decrease of most pollutant emissions was observed with both alcohols addition.

  18. Utilising the Hand Model to promote a culturally safe environment for international nursing students.

    PubMed

    Mackay, Bev; Harding, Thomas; Jurlina, Lou; Scobie, Norma; Khan, Ruelle

    2012-03-01

    The rising number of international students studying outside their own country poses challenges for nursing education. Numbers are predicted to grow and economic factors are placing increasing pressure on tertiary institutions to accept these students. In adapting to a foreign learning environment international students must not only adapt to the academic culture but also to the social cultural context. The most significant acculturation issues for students are English as a second language, differences in education pedagogy and social integration and connectedness. Students studying in New Zealand need to work with Māori, the indigenous people, and assimilate and practice the unique aspects of cultural safety, which has evolved in nursing as part of the response to the principles underpinning the Treaty of Waitangi. The Hand Model offers the potential to support international nursing students in a culturally safe manner across all aspects of acculturation including those aspects of cultural safety unique to New Zealand. The model was originally developed by Lou Jurlina, a nursing teacher, to assist her to teach cultural safety and support her students in practising cultural safety in nursing. The thumb, represents 'awareness', with the other four digits signifying 'connection', 'communication', 'negotiation' and 'advocacy' respectively. Each digit is connected to the palm where the ultimate evaluation of The Hand Model in promoting cultural safety culminates in the clasping and shaking of hands: the moment of shared meaning. It promotes a sense of self worth and identity in students and a safe environment in which they can learn.

  19. Utilising the Hand Model to promote a culturally safe environment for international nursing students.

    PubMed

    Mackay, Bev; Harding, Thomas; Jurlina, Lou; Scobie, Norma; Khan, Ruelle

    2011-04-01

    The rising number of international students studying outside their own country poses challenges for nursing education. Numbers are predicted to grow and economic factors are placing increasing pressure on tertiary institutions to accept these students. In adapting to a foreign learning environment international students must not only adapt to the academic culture but also to the socio-cultural context. The most significant acculturation issues for students are English as a second language, differences in education pedagogy and social integration and connectedness. Students studying in New Zealand need to work with Maori, the indigenous people, and assimilate and practice the unique aspects of cultural safety, which has evolved in nursing as part of the response to the principles underpinning the Treaty of Waitangi. The Hand Model offers the potential to support international students in a culturally safe manner across all aspects of acculturation including those aspects of cultural safety unique to New Zealand. The model was originally developed by Lou Jurlina, a nursing teacher, to assist her to teach cultural safety and support her students in practising cultural safety in nursing. The thumb, represents 'awareness', with the other four digits signifying 'connection" 'communication', 'negotiation' and 'advocacy' respectively. Each digit is connected to the palm where the ultimate evaluation of the Hand Model in promoting cultural safety culminates in the clasping and shaking of hands: the moment of shared meaning. It promotes a sense of self worth and identity in students and a safe environment in which they can learn.

  20. A new coordination pattern classification to assess gait kinematics when utilising a modified vector coding technique.

    PubMed

    Needham, Robert A; Naemi, Roozbeh; Chockalingam, Nachiappan

    2015-09-18

    A modified vector coding (VC) technique was used to quantify lumbar-pelvic coordination during gait. The outcome measure from the modified VC technique is known as the coupling angle (CA) which can be classified into one of four coordination patterns. This study introduces a new classification for this coordination pattern that expands on a current data analysis technique by introducing the terms in-phase with proximal dominancy, in-phase with distal dominancy, anti-phase with proximal dominancy and anti-phase with distal dominancy. This proposed coordination pattern classification can offer an interpretation of the CA that provides either in-phase or anti-phase coordination information, along with an understanding of the direction of segmental rotations and the segment that is the dominant mover at each point in time. Classifying the CA against the new defined coordination patterns and presenting this information in a traditional time-series format in this study has offered an insight into segmental range of motion. A new illustration is also presented which details the distribution of the CA within each of the coordination patterns and allows for the quantification of segmental dominancy. The proposed illustration technique can have important implications in demonstrating gait coordination data in an easily comprehensible fashion by clinicians and scientists alike. PMID:26303167

  1. Home range utilisation and territorial behaviour of lions (Panthera leo) on Karongwe Game Reserve, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Lehmann, Monika B; Funston, Paul J; Owen, Cailey R; Slotow, Rob

    2008-01-01

    Interventionist conservation management of territorial large carnivores has increased in recent years, especially in South Africa. Understanding of spatial ecology is an important component of predator conservation and management. Spatial patterns are influenced by many, often interacting, factors making elucidation of key drivers difficult. We had the opportunity to study a simplified system, a single pride of lions (Panthera leo) after reintroduction onto the 85 km(2) Karongwe Game Reserve, from 1999-2005, using radio-telemetry. In 2002 one male was removed from the paired coalition which had been present for the first three years. A second pride and male were in a fenced reserve adjacent of them to the east. This made it possible to separate social and resource factors in both a coalition and single male scenario, and the driving factors these seem to have on spatial ecology. Male ranging behaviour was not affected by coalition size, being driven more by resource rather than social factors. The females responded to the lions on the adjacent reserve by avoiding the area closest to them, therefore females may be more driven by social factors. Home range size and the resource response to water are important factors to consider when reintroducing lions to a small reserve, and it is hoped that these findings lead to other similar studies which will contribute to sound decisions regarding the management of lions on small reserves.

  2. Groundwater and surface-water utilisation using a bank infiltration technique in Malaysia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shamsuddin, Mohd Khairul Nizar; Sulaiman, Wan Nor Azmin; Suratman, Saim; Zakaria, Mohamad Pauzi; Samuding, Kamarudin

    2014-05-01

    Bank infiltration (BI) is one of the solutions to providing raw water for public supply in tropical countries. This study in Malaysia explores the use of BI to supplement a polluted surface-water resource with groundwater. Three major factors were investigated: (1) contribution of surface water through BI to the resulting abstraction, (2) input of local groundwater, and (3) water-quality characteristics of the resulting water supply. A geophysical method was employed to define the subsurface geology and hydrogeology, and isotope techniques were performed to identify the source of groundwater recharge and the interaction between surface water and groundwater. The physicochemical and microbiological parameters of the local surface-water bodies and groundwater were analyzed before and during water abstraction. Extracted water revealed a 5-98 % decrease in turbidity, as well as reductions in HCO3 -, Cl-, SO4 2-, NO3 -, Ca2+, Al3+ and As concentrations compared with those of Langat River water. In addition, amounts of E. coli, total coliform and Giardia were significantly reduced (99.9 %). However, water samples from test wells during pumping showed high concentrations of Fe2+ and Mn2+. Pumping test results indicate that the two wells used in the study were able to sustain yields.

  3. A new coordination pattern classification to assess gait kinematics when utilising a modified vector coding technique.

    PubMed

    Needham, Robert A; Naemi, Roozbeh; Chockalingam, Nachiappan

    2015-09-18

    A modified vector coding (VC) technique was used to quantify lumbar-pelvic coordination during gait. The outcome measure from the modified VC technique is known as the coupling angle (CA) which can be classified into one of four coordination patterns. This study introduces a new classification for this coordination pattern that expands on a current data analysis technique by introducing the terms in-phase with proximal dominancy, in-phase with distal dominancy, anti-phase with proximal dominancy and anti-phase with distal dominancy. This proposed coordination pattern classification can offer an interpretation of the CA that provides either in-phase or anti-phase coordination information, along with an understanding of the direction of segmental rotations and the segment that is the dominant mover at each point in time. Classifying the CA against the new defined coordination patterns and presenting this information in a traditional time-series format in this study has offered an insight into segmental range of motion. A new illustration is also presented which details the distribution of the CA within each of the coordination patterns and allows for the quantification of segmental dominancy. The proposed illustration technique can have important implications in demonstrating gait coordination data in an easily comprehensible fashion by clinicians and scientists alike.

  4. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy versus cyclic voltammetry for the electroanalytical sensing of capsaicin utilising screen printed carbon nanotube electrodes.

    PubMed

    Randviir, Edward P; Metters, Jonathan P; Stainton, John; Banks, Craig E

    2013-05-21

    Screen printed carbon nanotube electrodes (SPEs) are explored as electroanalytical sensing platforms for the detection of capsaicin in both synthetic capsaicin solutions and capsaicin extracted from chillies and chilli sauces utilising both cyclic voltammetry (CV) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). It is found that the technique which is most applicable to the electroanalytical detection of capsaicin depends upon the analyte concentration: for the case of low capsaicin concentrations, CV is a more appropriate method as capsaicin exhibits characteristic voltammetric waves of peak heights relevant to the capsaicin concentration; but for the case of high capsaicin concentrations where the voltammetric waves merge and migrate out of the potential window, EIS is shown to be a more appropriate technique, owing to the observed linear increases in R(ct) with increasing concentration. Furthermore, we explore different types of screen printed carbon nanotube electrodes, namely single- and multi- walled carbon nanotubes, finding that they are technique-specific: for the case of low capsaicin concentrations, single-walled carbon nanotube SPEs are preferable (SW-SPE); yet for the case of EIS at high capsaicin concentrations, multi-walled carbon nanotube SPEs (MW-SPE) are preferred, based upon analytical responses. The analytical performance of CV and EIS is applied to the sensing of capsaicin in grown chillies and chilli sauces and is critically compared to 'gold standard' HPLC analysis.

  5. Wealth and antenatal care use: implications for maternal health care utilisation in Ghana.

    PubMed

    Arthur, Eric

    2012-01-01

    The study investigates the effect of wealth on maternal health care utilization in Ghana via its effect on Antenatal care use. Antenatal care serves as the initial point of contact of expectant mothers to maternal health care providers before delivery. The study is pivoted on the introduction of the free maternal health care policy in April 2005 in Ghana with the aim of reducing the financial barrier to the use of maternal health care services, to help reduce the high rate of maternal deaths. Prior to the introduction of the policy, studies found wealth to have a positive and significant influence on the use of Antenatal care. It is thus expected that with the policy, wealth should not influence the use of maternal health care significantly. Using secondary data from the 2008 Ghana Demographic and Health survey, the results have revealed that wealth still has a significant influence on adequate use of Antenatal care. Education, age, number of living children, transportation and health insurance are other factors that were found to influence the use of Antenatal care in Ghana. There also exist considerable variations in the use of Antenatal care in the geographical regions and between the rural and urban dwellers. It is recommended that to improve the use of Antenatal care and hence maternal health care utilization, some means of support is provided especially to women within the lowest wealth quintiles, like the provision and availability of recommended medication at the health center; secondly, women should be encouraged to pursue education to at least the secondary level since this improves their use of maternal health services. Policy should also target mothers who have had the experience of child birth on the need to use adequate Antenatal care for each pregnancy, since these mothers tend to use less antenatal care for subsequent pregnancies. The regional disparities found may be due to inaccessibility and unavailability of health facilities and services in the

  6. Wealth and antenatal care use: implications for maternal health care utilisation in Ghana

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    The study investigates the effect of wealth on maternal health care utilization in Ghana via its effect on Antenatal care use. Antenatal care serves as the initial point of contact of expectant mothers to maternal health care providers before delivery. The study is pivoted on the introduction of the free maternal health care policy in April 2005 in Ghana with the aim of reducing the financial barrier to the use of maternal health care services, to help reduce the high rate of maternal deaths. Prior to the introduction of the policy, studies found wealth to have a positive and significant influence on the use of Antenatal care. It is thus expected that with the policy, wealth should not influence the use of maternal health care significantly. Using secondary data from the 2008 Ghana Demographic and Health survey, the results have revealed that wealth still has a significant influence on adequate use of Antenatal care. Education, age, number of living children, transportation and health insurance are other factors that were found to influence the use of Antenatal care in Ghana. There also exist considerable variations in the use of Antenatal care in the geographical regions and between the rural and urban dwellers. It is recommended that to improve the use of Antenatal care and hence maternal health care utilization, some means of support is provided especially to women within the lowest wealth quintiles, like the provision and availability of recommended medication at the health center; secondly, women should be encouraged to pursue education to at least the secondary level since this improves their use of maternal health services. Policy should also target mothers who have had the experience of child birth on the need to use adequate Antenatal care for each pregnancy, since these mothers tend to use less antenatal care for subsequent pregnancies. The regional disparities found may be due to inaccessibility and unavailability of health facilities and services in the

  7. Calf rearing in the tropics: growth rates and utilisation of milk substitute diets.

    PubMed

    Black, D H

    1982-08-01

    Twelve Brahman (Bos indicus) and 36 Holstein (Bos taurus) calves in Trinidad were fed on an amount of milk substitute equivalent to either 10 or 20% of their body weight each day. The diets contained either 10, 20 or 30% added fat. Nutrient balances were studied for 21 days. The liveweight gains of the calves depended on the quantity of milk fed and the breed of calf (Holstein greater than Brahman) but were independent of fat level. The Brahman calves were reluctant to accept milk substitute from a bucket. The digestibility of dry matter, nitrogen and fat was slightly higher for the Holstein than for the Brahman calves but there was little difference between the ME requirements for the 2 breeds. PMID:7123668

  8. Functional tooth restoration utilising split germs through re-regionalisation of the tooth-forming field

    PubMed Central

    Yamamoto, Naomi; Oshima, Masamitsu; Tanaka, Chie; Ogawa, Miho; Nakajima, Kei; Ishida, Kentaro; Moriyama, Keiji; Tsuji, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    The tooth is an ectodermal organ that arises from a tooth germ under the regulation of reciprocal epithelial-mesenchymal interactions. Tooth morphogenesis occurs in the tooth-forming field as a result of reaction-diffusion waves of specific gene expression patterns. Here, we developed a novel mechanical ligation method for splitting tooth germs to artificially regulate the molecules that control tooth morphology. The split tooth germs successfully developed into multiple correct teeth through the re-regionalisation of the tooth-forming field, which is regulated by reaction-diffusion waves in response to mechanical force. Furthermore, split teeth erupted into the oral cavity and restored physiological tooth function, including mastication, periodontal ligament function and responsiveness to noxious stimuli. Thus, this study presents a novel tooth regenerative technology based on split tooth germs and the re-regionalisation of the tooth-forming field by artificial mechanical force. PMID:26673152

  9. A novel, generic, electroanalytical immunoassay format utilising silver nano-particles as a bio-label.

    PubMed

    Porter, Robert; Kabil, Alena; Forstern, Camilla; Slevin, Christopher; Kouwenberg, Katherine; Szymanski, Mateusz; Birch, Brian

    2009-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate a novel, generic, sensitive electroanalytical platform method for binding reactions, such as immuno or DNA assays. It was thought that silver nano-particles of 40 nM when attached to the analyte of interest would give an electroanalytical amplification of approx. 10(6) resulting from silver ions produced by dissolution of the nano-particles by a mild chemical oxidant such as ferricyanide. Ferricyanide has been widely used in biochemical measurement and has been shown to relatively stable in a biosensor device. Here we have demonstrated the use of silver nano-particles as a bio-conjugate in a 96 well sandwich assay format for measuring human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) to a concentration of 0.2 mIU.

  10. Phase-space properties of magneto-optical traps utilising micro-fabricated gratings.

    PubMed

    McGilligan, J P; Griffin, P F; Riis, E; Arnold, A S

    2015-04-01

    We have used diffraction gratings to simplify the fabrication, and dramatically increase the atomic collection efficiency, of magneto-optical traps using micro-fabricated optics. The atom number enhancement was mainly due to the increased beam capture volume, afforded by the large area (4cm(2)) shallow etch (~ 200nm) binary grating chips. Here we provide a detailed theoretical and experimental investigation of the on-chip magneto-optical trap temperature and density in four different chip geometries using (87)Rb, whilst studying effects due to MOT radiation pressure imbalance. With optimal initial MOTs on two of the chips we obtain both large atom number (2×10(7)) and sub-Doppler temperatures (50 μK) after optical molasses.

  11. A numerical model for thermal energy storage systems utilising encapsulated phase change materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jacob, Rhys; Saman, Wasim; Bruno, Frank

    2016-05-01

    In an effort to reduce the cost of thermal energy storage for concentrated solar power plants, a thermocline storage concept was investigated. Two systems were investigated being a sensible-only and an encapsulated phase change system. Both systems have the potential to reduce the storage tank volume and/or reduce the cost of the filler material, thereby reducing the cost of the system when compared to current two-tank molten salt systems. The objective of the current paper is to create a numerical model capable of designing and simulating the aforementioned thermocline storage concepts in the open source programming language known as Python. The results of the current study are compared to previous numerical results and are found to be in good agreement.

  12. Utilising Physical, Chemical, And Stable Isotope Techniques To Delineate The Flows Within A Coastal Wetlands System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marimuthu, S.; Reynolds, D. A.

    2004-12-01

    The coastal wetlands system under study comprises a series of small lakes and is very unique in the sense that the lakes within the system display different hydrochemistry and stable isotopic composition although they are connected by channels and form as a cluster of inter-connected lakes. The complex flow systems and the transient nature of the interactions between surface water and groundwater present in the wetlands system were delineated using both chemical and stable isotope data to supplement existing classical hydraulic data. The spatial and temporal variations of chemical and isotopic composition of the individual water bodies within the system were measured for an annual cycle, to provide a unique data set for the analysis. A purely hydraulic analysis of the region surrounding the wetlands would indicate that the wetlands are flow-through bodies, however the chemical and isotope information indicates the lakes almost invariably act as discharge points for the surface water flows and the north south regional groundwater flow. Large volumes of groundwater flow were found within an observed northeast-southwest trending paleochannel within the wetlands system, and in this case, the chemical and isotopic evidence are complimentary with the hydraulic study. The isotope and chloride results from the surface water bodies allowed for the accurate determination of the composition of the major creeks in the system, and a simple portioning model indicated that groundwater is the predominant source for the inflowing creeks. Similarly, the deuterium versus Oxygen-18 and deuterium versus chloride relationships observed in the system portray two distinct evaporation trends, one through the hypersaline lakes and the other through less saline lakes which indicates that the isotopic composition of the water bodies are affected to a great extent by high dissolved salts content. The superposition of these data sets provided a unique vision of the flow system and clearly shows

  13. Role of general practice in the utilisation of the NSW Get Healthy Information and Coaching Service.

    PubMed

    O'Hara, Blythe J; Phongsavan, Philayrath; Rissel, Chris; Hardy, Louise L; Zander, Alexis; Greenaway, Mark; Bauman, Adrian E

    2015-01-01

    A lifestyle-modification telephone-based service is delivered in New South Wales (NSW; the Get Healthy Information and Coaching Service (GHS)) as an important obesity-prevention, population-wide program. The present study examined referrals from general practitioners (GP) versus self-referral to the GHS in terms of risk profile and effectiveness of outcomes. The study used a pre-post test design to assess changes in outcomes within the setting of a telephone-based lifestyle-support service available to NSW adults (18+ years) who self-referred or were referred by their health practitioner and/or GP, and registered for the GHS between February 2009 and August 2013 (n = 22 183). The GHS has two service components: (1) the provision of an information kit (one off contact) on healthy eating, being physically active and achieving and/or maintaining a healthy weight; and (2) a 6-month coaching program that includes 10 telephone calls aimed at achieving and maintaining lifestyle-related goals. Sociodemographic characteristics, referral source and self-reported anthropometric (height, waist and waist circumference (WC)) and behavioural risk factor (physical activity and nutrition-related behaviours) data were collected at baseline and at 6 months. Analysis revealed that GPs effectively recruited hard-to-reach subtargets, as well as adults who are obese and have an increased WC risk. Participants in the GHS coaching program, irrespective of GHS referral source, reported a mean weight loss of -3.8 kg, a decrease in WC of -5.0 cm and increases in both fruit and vegetable consumption and physical activity. In conclusion, GPs have an important role in GHS uptake (through proactive referral or as an adjunct to practice-based interventions) because they can recruit those most at need and facilitate improvements in their patients' risk factor profiles.

  14. Energy intake and utilisation by nursing bearded seal (Erignathus barbatus) pups from Svalbard, Norway.

    PubMed

    Lydersen, C; Kovacs, K M; Hammill, M O; Gjertz, I

    1996-01-01

    In this study we measure energy intake via milk in nursing bearded seal (Erignathus barbatus) pups and determine how this energy is allocated into metabolism and storage of new tissues. This was accomplished using longitudinal mass gain records and the doubly labelled water technique on nursing pups in combination with cross-sectional data on changes in milk composition from bearded seal mothers. The pups (n = 3) were all less than a week old at the start of the experiments. Pups gained 3.3 +/- 0.4 kg.day-1 of which 50% was fat, 14% protein and 36% water. Average daily water influx for the pups was 69.5 +/- 9.0 ml.kg-1. day-1. Average CO2 production during the study period was 0.99 +/- 0.10 ml.g-1.h-1, which corresponds to a field metabolic rate of 642 +/- 67 kJ.kg-1. day-1, or 6.0 +/- 0.5 times the predicted basal metabolic rate according to Kleiber (1975). The pups drank an average of 7.6 +/- 0.5 kg of milk daily. This corresponds to a daily energy intake of 154 +/- 8 MJ, 47 +/- 14% of which was stored as new body tissue. Despite this high energy intake bearded seal pups do not get as fat as do other nursing phocids. This is in part due to their larger body size but also due to their very active aquatic lifestyle and the lower and more consistent fat content of the milk compared to other phocid species. Bearded seal mothers forage during lactation and may also be involved in teaching their pups to feed independently. All these data suggest that the lactation strategy of bearded seals differs from the phocid norm.

  15. Financial and environmental modelling of water hardness--implications for utilising harvested rainwater in washing machines.

    PubMed

    Morales-Pinzón, Tito; Lurueña, Rodrigo; Gabarrell, Xavier; Gasol, Carles M; Rieradevall, Joan

    2014-02-01

    A study was conducted to determine the financial and environmental effects of water quality on rainwater harvesting systems. The potential for replacing tap water used in washing machines with rainwater was studied, and then analysis presented in this paper is valid for applications that include washing machines where tap water hardness may be important. A wide range of weather conditions, such as rainfall (284-1,794 mm/year); water hardness (14-315 mg/L CaCO3); tap water prices (0.85-2.65 Euros/m(3)) in different Spanish urban areas (from individual buildings to whole neighbourhoods); and other scenarios (including materials and water storage capacity) were analysed. Rainfall was essential for rainwater harvesting, but the tap water prices and the water hardness were the main factors for consideration in the financial and the environmental analyses, respectively. The local tap water hardness and prices can cause greater financial and environmental impacts than the type of material used for the water storage tank or the volume of the tank. The use of rainwater as a substitute for hard water in washing machines favours financial analysis. Although tap water hardness significantly affects the financial analysis, the greatest effect was found in the environmental analysis. When hard tap water needed to be replaced, it was found that a water price of 1 Euro/m(3) could render the use of rainwater financially feasible when using large-scale rainwater harvesting systems. When the water hardness was greater than 300 mg/L CaCO3, a financial analysis revealed that an net present value greater than 270 Euros/dwelling could be obtained at the neighbourhood scale, and there could be a reduction in the Global Warming Potential (100 years) ranging between 35 and 101 kg CO2 eq./dwelling/year.

  16. Utilisation of X-Ray computed microtomography for evaluation of iron sulphide distribution in roofing slate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Souček, Kamil; Daněk, Tomáš; Vavro, Martin; Botula, Jiří

    2016-04-01

    Roofing slate represents a traditional natural stone used for centuries for roofing and other construction applications in various types of buildings. Quality roofing slate must be primarily splittable into large, thin and waterproof tiles. In addition, it must be stable in colour and resistant against weathering. The abundance of mineral phases that weather easily or minerals that are long-term unstable has the effect of reducing the durability of slates in exterior conditions. One of the most problematic rock components, which are in a larger or smaller extent present in almost all slates, are iron sulphides, such as pyrite, marcasite or pyrrhotite. Under common atmospheric conditions, these minerals tend to oxidise, which leads to the formation of limonite and sulphuric acid. As a consequence of the origin of red-brown Fe oxyhydroxides, the undesirable colour changes of the slate may occur. But the most serious problem which occurs during this process is the changes in volume. This can cause disintegration of slate depending on the form of the iron sulphide occurrence. The content and size distribution of iron sulphides in roofing slate is normally determined using the microscopic analysis in transmitted light, combined with the observation in reflected light. For quantitative determination of iron sulphides in slate, the X-Ray powder diffraction is also often used. The results of the microscopic and X-Ray analyses need to be mutually compared and should not differ fundamentally. This paper is focused on the assessing the possibility of application of the X-Ray computed microtomography (CT) as a new complementary technique enabling the analysis of content and size (volume) distribution of iron sulphides in roofing slate. The X-Ray CT study was conducted using an XT H 225 ST industrial micro-tomographic system made by Nikon Metrology NV. Studied samples were reconstructed using the CT Pro 3D software (Nikon Metrology NV). The visualisation and analysis software

  17. Utilisation des technologies d'impression pour le remplissage industriel des trous d'interconnexion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blonde, Paul

    This master project concerns a feasibility study about the use of inkjet drop-on-demand to fill through silicon vias in MEMS "via last" microfabrication process. The aim of our research was to develop a comprehensive process based on the use of a dispersion of a gold/tin alloy (Au80Sn 20) of nanoparticles in suspension in a carrier fluid. Our work mainly focused on the preparation of stable suspensions of nanoparticles and on the high precision filling of the vias. We first developed a method to form a stable suspension of nanoparticles in a carrier fluid using a surfactant, polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP). Tests performed on various solvents allowed us to determine that isopropanol was the best carrier fluid to achieve high volume fractions of suspended nanoparticles. The volume fraction of the stable dispersion with the highest content reached 11 %. The conditions to generate stable individual microdroplets from a piezoelectric printing actuator were then analyzed. The generation of monodisperse microdroplets beiing a complex process, partly described by Fromm's theory and the theory of waveguides, we investigated the operating conditions permitting to precisely set the drop volume and ejection velocity. We therefore characterized an "ejectability zone" model universally usable to generate microdrops with desired output parameters based on the amplitude, width, and frequency of the electric pulse applied to the piezoelectric actuator of a print head having a 50 mum diameter aperture. We also developed a theoretical kinematical model describing the trajectories of microdrops during printing in order to understand the influence of their volume and initial velocity on the accuracy, reproducibility and homogeneity of the deposits in the presence of air fluctuations. This model was implemented in MATLAB and validated in real operating conditions. The results showed that a print head with a 50 mum diameter aperture will generate microdroplets with diameters between 30 and

  18. Utilisation of a Novel Test to Measure Severity and Treatment Efficacy of Posterior Blepharitis.

    PubMed

    Yun, Steven T H; Woo, David M; Chong, Calum W K; Liu, Ying; Francis, Katherine E; Shah, Saumil A; Agar, Ashish; Francis, Ian C

    2015-01-01

    Background. This study evaluated the effectiveness of managing posterior blepharitis (PB) using a novel Posterior Blepharitis Management Protocol (PBMP). Design. Prospective, consecutive case series with 100% followup to one month. Participants. 27 patients (54 eyes) with PB from an Ophthalmology practice in Sydney, Australia. Methods. Each patient's PB was assessed by grading the nature and expressibility of the central lower lid tarsal gland secretions on Compression Of The Eyelid (COTE). Patients were then instructed in detail to undertake daily PB management sessions at home using our modified PBMP. Main Outcome Measures. On a subjective scale, patients compared their symptoms at one month with baseline. COTE scores were reevaluated to assess the objective effectiveness of each individual's PBMP. COTE scoring was described as grades 1 (clear oil), 2 (pus, liquid), 3 (toothpaste-like secretions), and 4 (complete tarsal gland obstruction). Results. Patients reported a mean 77.8% ± 13.5% subjective improvement in symptoms. There was a trend towards improvement in COTE grading at one month compared with baseline: grades 1 (0 to 7.4%), 2a (22.2 to 16.6%), 2b (7.4 to 3.7%), 3 (18.5 to 27.7%), and 4 (51.8 to 44%). Conclusions. PBMP provided a rapid, inexpensive, simple, effective, and safe method of treating PB.

  19. Enhanced Mechanical Performance of Bio-Inspired Hybrid Structures Utilising Topological Interlocking Geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Djumas, Lee; Molotnikov, Andrey; Simon, George P.; Estrin, Yuri

    2016-05-01

    Structural composites inspired by nacre have emerged as prime exemplars for guiding materials design of fracture-resistant, rigid hybrid materials. The intricate microstructure of nacre, which combines a hard majority phase with a small fraction of a soft phase, achieves superior mechanical properties compared to its constituents and has generated much interest. However, replicating the hierarchical microstructure of nacre is very challenging, not to mention improving it. In this article, we propose to alter the geometry of the hard building blocks by introducing the concept of topological interlocking. This design principle has previously been shown to provide an inherently brittle material with a remarkable flexural compliance. We now demonstrate that by combining the basic architecture of nacre with topological interlocking of discrete hard building blocks, hybrid materials of a new type can be produced. By adding a soft phase at the interfaces between topologically interlocked blocks in a single-build additive manufacturing process, further improvement of mechanical properties is achieved. The design of these fabricated hybrid structures has been guided by computational work elucidating the effect of various geometries. To our knowledge, this is the first reported study that combines the advantages of nacre-inspired structures with the benefits of topological interlocking.

  20. Utilisation of a Novel Test to Measure Severity and Treatment Efficacy of Posterior Blepharitis

    PubMed Central

    Yun, Steven T. H.; Woo, David M.; Chong, Calum W. K.; Liu, Ying; Francis, Katherine E.; Shah, Saumil A.; Agar, Ashish; Francis, Ian C.

    2015-01-01

    Background. This study evaluated the effectiveness of managing posterior blepharitis (PB) using a novel Posterior Blepharitis Management Protocol (PBMP). Design. Prospective, consecutive case series with 100% followup to one month. Participants. 27 patients (54 eyes) with PB from an Ophthalmology practice in Sydney, Australia. Methods. Each patient's PB was assessed by grading the nature and expressibility of the central lower lid tarsal gland secretions on Compression Of The Eyelid (COTE). Patients were then instructed in detail to undertake daily PB management sessions at home using our modified PBMP. Main Outcome Measures. On a subjective scale, patients compared their symptoms at one month with baseline. COTE scores were reevaluated to assess the objective effectiveness of each individual's PBMP. COTE scoring was described as grades 1 (clear oil), 2 (pus, liquid), 3 (toothpaste-like secretions), and 4 (complete tarsal gland obstruction). Results. Patients reported a mean 77.8% ± 13.5% subjective improvement in symptoms. There was a trend towards improvement in COTE grading at one month compared with baseline: grades 1 (0 to 7.4%), 2a (22.2 to 16.6%), 2b (7.4 to 3.7%), 3 (18.5 to 27.7%), and 4 (51.8 to 44%). Conclusions. PBMP provided a rapid, inexpensive, simple, effective, and safe method of treating PB. PMID:26347811

  1. Modelling and Optimisation of Eurycoma longifolia Extraction Utilising a Recirculating Flow Extractor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ajib Mohtar, Mohd; Kumaresan, Sivakumar; Roji Sarmidi, Mohd; Aziz, Ramlan Abdul

    In this study, Tongkat Ali was extracted with a newly designed recirculating flow extractor with temperature and flow rate as the operating parameters. The optimum duration and ratio for extraction were found to be 90 min and 40:1 w/w, respectively. The determination of optimal operating parameter value for this extractor was based on maximum percentage extract yield and solid diffusivity, Ds,. From the experiments, it was found that the temperature and flow rate that produce the highest yield and solid diffusivity value were at 90°C and 400 rpm (22.47 mL sec-1), respectively. The optimal operating parameter values were used to compare the recirculating flow extractor performance with a batch extraction at 90°C. The comparison showed that the batch extraction was able to extract more rapidly than the recirculating flow extractor. The solid diffusivity, Ds, value for the batch extraction was found to be is 3.12x10-11 m2 sec-1 while the recirculating flow extractor had a solid diffusivity, Ds, value of 2.98x10-11 m2 sec-1 which indicated the difference in extraction rate. However, by utilizing the recirculating flow extractor, a higher final yield than batch extraction was produced which is 7.70% (w/w) for the recirculating flow extractor and 6.67% (w/w) for the batch extraction. This is possibly caused by the higher rates of solvent losses through evaporation for batch extraction.

  2. New concepts for the avoidance or utilisation of methane in life support systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kenn, Franz

    2011-08-01

    Due to high resupply costs, especially for long-duration stays in space habitats beyond low earth orbit, future manned space missions will require life support systems (LSS) with a high degree of regenerativity. Possible ways to overcome the waste of resources and to save on resupply mass are therefore of major interest for the development of next generation environmental control and life support systems. The advanced closed-loop system (ACLS) for air revitalization, which is currently being developed by the European Space Agency, will be able to recover the oxygen from exhaled carbon dioxide by use of a Sabatier reactor (see Fig. 1). However, the employed process generates methane as a side product. Current plans envisage it to be vented over board, but the resulting loss would necessitate the resupply of hydrogen. In order to prevent this waste of methane, there are three options: The LSS could be altered to not produce any methane at all, the methane could be cracked into its constituents and reused, or methane itself could be put to use as a resource. Different approaches were examined, and ideas for a Bosch-Boudouard reactor (no methane production) as well as the design study of a pyrolysis thruster (methane cracking and partial use for propulsion) are presented in this paper.

  3. Female sex workers as health educators with men who buy sex: utilising narratives of rationalisations.

    PubMed

    Sanders, Teela

    2006-05-01

    This paper reports on findings from an ethnographic study of female sex workers who work in the indoor sex markets in a British city. An unexpected finding was the collective narratives that sex workers construct to rationalise their involvement in the sex industry. Fifty-five respondents who took part in in-depth interviews maintained that prostitution is a useful occupation and function in society. Narratives included providing emotional support to male clients; a service for men who are socially or physically disabled; preventing men having adulterous affairs; and health education, disease prevention and as therapists for sexual dysfunction. This paper evaluates how the latter narrative of sexual health promotion is an example of how sex workers are ideally placed to work as health educators with men who buy sex. Arguing against gender specific sexual health policies, men who buy sex are described as a 'high risk' group who are also a hidden population. Limitations posed by ideological, ethical and practical concerns relating to the specific conditions of the sex industry suggest that this proposal could be partially successful. In conclusion, I suggest the sexual health of the nation and the place of sex workers in society must be considered with regard to recent policy debates on the management of prostitution and the cultural construction of the sex worker.

  4. Nanoscale carbon materials from hydrocarbons pyrolysis: Structure, chemical behavior, utilisation for non-aqueous supercapacitors

    SciTech Connect

    Savilov, Serguei V.; Strokova, Natalia E.; Ivanov, Anton S.; Arkhipova, Ekaterina A.; Desyatov, Andrey V.; Hui, Xia; Aldoshin, Serguei M.; Lunin, Valery V.

    2015-09-15

    Highlights: • N-doped and regular carbon nanomaterials were obtained by pyrolitic technique. • Dynamic vapor sorption of different solvents reveals smaller S{sub BET} values. • Steric hindrance and specific chemical interactions are the reasons for this. • Nitrogen doping leads to raise of capacitance and coulombic efficiency with non-aqueous N-containing electrolyte. - Abstract: This work systematically studies adsorption properties of carbon nanomaterials that are synthesized through hydrocarbons that is a powerful technique to fabricate different kinds of carbon materials, e.g., nanotubes, nanoshells, onions, including nitrogen substituted. The adsorption properties of the as-synthesized carbons are achieved by low temperature nitrogen adsorption and organic vapors sorption. Heptane, acetonitrile, water, ethanol, benzene and 1-methylimidazole, which are of great importance for development of supercapacitors, are used as substrates. It is discovered that while nitrogen adsorption reveals a high specific surface area, this parameter for most of organic compounds is rather small depending not only on the size of its molecule but also on chemical interactions for a pair adsorbent–adsorbate. The experimental values of heat of adsorption for carbon and N-substituted structures, when Coulomb cross-coupling of nitrogen atoms in adsorbent and adsorbate takes place, confirms this supposition.

  5. Plutonium and minor actinide utilisation in a pebble-bed high temperature reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Petrov, B. Y.; Kuijper, J. C.; Oppe, J.; De Haas, J. B. M.

    2012-07-01

    This paper contains results of the analysis of the pebble-bed high temperature gas-cooled PUMA reactor loaded with plutonium and minor actinide (Pu/MA) fuel. Starting from knowledge and experience gained in the Euratom FP5 projects HTR-N and HTR-N1, this study aims at demonstrating the potential of high temperature reactors to utilize or transmute Pu/MA fuel. The work has been performed within the Euratom FP6 project PUMA. A number of different fuel types and fuel configurations have been analyzed and compared with respect to incineration performance and safety-related reactor parameters. The results show the excellent plutonium and minor actinide burning capabilities of the high temperature reactor. The largest degree of incineration is attained in the case of an HTR fuelled by pure plutonium fuel as it remains critical at very deep burnup of the discharged pebbles. Addition of minor actinides to the fuel leads to decrease of the achievable discharge burnup and therefore smaller fraction of actinides incinerated during reactor operation. The inert-matrix fuel design improves the transmutation performance of the reactor, while the 'wallpaper' fuel does not have advantage over the standard fuel design in this respect. After 100 years of decay following the fuel discharge, the total amount of actinides remains almost unchanged for all of the fuel types considered. Among the plutonium isotopes, only the amount of Pu-241 is reduced significantly due to its relatively short half-life. (authors)

  6. Enhanced Mechanical Performance of Bio-Inspired Hybrid Structures Utilising Topological Interlocking Geometry.

    PubMed

    Djumas, Lee; Molotnikov, Andrey; Simon, George P; Estrin, Yuri

    2016-01-01

    Structural composites inspired by nacre have emerged as prime exemplars for guiding materials design of fracture-resistant, rigid hybrid materials. The intricate microstructure of nacre, which combines a hard majority phase with a small fraction of a soft phase, achieves superior mechanical properties compared to its constituents and has generated much interest. However, replicating the hierarchical microstructure of nacre is very challenging, not to mention improving it. In this article, we propose to alter the geometry of the hard building blocks by introducing the concept of topological interlocking. This design principle has previously been shown to provide an inherently brittle material with a remarkable flexural compliance. We now demonstrate that by combining the basic architecture of nacre with topological interlocking of discrete hard building blocks, hybrid materials of a new type can be produced. By adding a soft phase at the interfaces between topologically interlocked blocks in a single-build additive manufacturing process, further improvement of mechanical properties is achieved. The design of these fabricated hybrid structures has been guided by computational work elucidating the effect of various geometries. To our knowledge, this is the first reported study that combines the advantages of nacre-inspired structures with the benefits of topological interlocking. PMID:27216277

  7. Utilisation of a Novel Test to Measure Severity and Treatment Efficacy of Posterior Blepharitis.

    PubMed

    Yun, Steven T H; Woo, David M; Chong, Calum W K; Liu, Ying; Francis, Katherine E; Shah, Saumil A; Agar, Ashish; Francis, Ian C

    2015-01-01

    Background. This study evaluated the effectiveness of managing posterior blepharitis (PB) using a novel Posterior Blepharitis Management Protocol (PBMP). Design. Prospective, consecutive case series with 100% followup to one month. Participants. 27 patients (54 eyes) with PB from an Ophthalmology practice in Sydney, Australia. Methods. Each patient's PB was assessed by grading the nature and expressibility of the central lower lid tarsal gland secretions on Compression Of The Eyelid (COTE). Patients were then instructed in detail to undertake daily PB management sessions at home using our modified PBMP. Main Outcome Measures. On a subjective scale, patients compared their symptoms at one month with baseline. COTE scores were reevaluated to assess the objective effectiveness of each individual's PBMP. COTE scoring was described as grades 1 (clear oil), 2 (pus, liquid), 3 (toothpaste-like secretions), and 4 (complete tarsal gland obstruction). Results. Patients reported a mean 77.8% ± 13.5% subjective improvement in symptoms. There was a trend towards improvement in COTE grading at one month compared with baseline: grades 1 (0 to 7.4%), 2a (22.2 to 16.6%), 2b (7.4 to 3.7%), 3 (18.5 to 27.7%), and 4 (51.8 to 44%). Conclusions. PBMP provided a rapid, inexpensive, simple, effective, and safe method of treating PB. PMID:26347811

  8. The "5 a day" game: a nutritional intervention utilising innovative methodologies with primary school children.

    PubMed

    Rosi, Alice; Scazzina, Francesca; Ingrosso, Lisa; Morandi, Angelica; Del Rio, Daniele; Sanna, Alberto

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was observing and improving children's eating habits through an edutainment technological platform. A single-group education intervention was carried out in primary schools in Parma and Milano, Italy. A total of 76 children (32 females and 44 males, 8-10 years old) were involved in a 3-month nutritional program including lessons and educational videogames. Intakes of fruits, vegetables, juices and dietary total antioxidant capacity (TAC) were measured using 3-day food diaries before and after the intervention. The daily total consumption of fruit and vegetables increased from 421.8 (320.3) to 484.3 (337.2) g/day (p = 0.016). Consequently, daily dietary TAC increased by 26%, rising from 1.4 (1.3) to 1.6 (1.3) mmol of Trolox equivalents (p = 0.006). The methods and, particularly, the use of technological tools proved to be effective in conducting an educational intervention in children aged 8-10 years old.

  9. Enhanced Mechanical Performance of Bio-Inspired Hybrid Structures Utilising Topological Interlocking Geometry

    PubMed Central

    Djumas, Lee; Molotnikov, Andrey; Simon, George P.; Estrin, Yuri

    2016-01-01

    Structural composites inspired by nacre have emerged as prime exemplars for guiding materials design of fracture-resistant, rigid hybrid materials. The intricate microstructure of nacre, which combines a hard majority phase with a small fraction of a soft phase, achieves superior mechanical properties compared to its constituents and has generated much interest. However, replicating the hierarchical microstructure of nacre is very challenging, not to mention improving it. In this article, we propose to alter the geometry of the hard building blocks by introducing the concept of topological interlocking. This design principle has previously been shown to provide an inherently brittle material with a remarkable flexural compliance. We now demonstrate that by combining the basic architecture of nacre with topological interlocking of discrete hard building blocks, hybrid materials of a new type can be produced. By adding a soft phase at the interfaces between topologically interlocked blocks in a single-build additive manufacturing process, further improvement of mechanical properties is achieved. The design of these fabricated hybrid structures has been guided by computational work elucidating the effect of various geometries. To our knowledge, this is the first reported study that combines the advantages of nacre-inspired structures with the benefits of topological interlocking. PMID:27216277

  10. Growth and nutrient utilisation of blackspot seabream (Pagellus bogaraveo) under different feeding regimes.

    PubMed

    Cláudia Figueiredo-Silva, A; Corraze, Geneviève; Sanchez-Gurmaches, Joan; Gutiérrez, Joaquim; Valente, Luísa M P

    2010-12-01

    The growth and nutrient utilization of blackspot seabream was studied under self-feeding or hand feeding for 90 days. Groups of 31 fish with an initial body weight of 24 g were fed either by hand two times a day (09:00, and 18:00 h) to apparent satiety or by self-feeders. The 90 days of the feeding trial included two periods: an adaptation period (30 days) required to achieve a constant number of feed demands per day and a subsequent experimental period (60 days). Final body weight and daily growth index were unaffected by the feeding regimes. However, the marked reduction in voluntary feed intake associated with similar nutrient gain on the self-fed group resulted in improved nutrient efficiency and in subsequent increased protein, lipid and energy retentions compared to fish hand-fed at set hours. The self-fed group displayed depressed malic (<62%) and fatty acid synthetase (<35%) activities as well as reduced triacylglycerol plasma levels, which correlated positively with feed intake and, at some extent, with fish lipid content. These results indicate the ability of blackspot seabream to adjust their lipid metabolism according to fish feeding rhythm. No effect of feeding method was however observed on glycolytic hepatic activities or on glucose, cholesterol and insulin plasma levels. Self-feeders led to similar growth (DGI, 1.4-1.5) but better efficiency (FCR, 1.0 vs. 1.5), and hence, can be regarded as a helpful tool to optimize feed distribution according to this species natural rhythm. The maximal number of demands occurring between 20:00 and 21:00 h (dusk/sunset), together with the fact that 61% of the feed demands took place during the night, reveals a preferential crepuscular/nocturnal feeding pattern of this species.

  11. Utilising pseudo-CT data for dose calculation and plan optimization in adaptive radiotherapy.

    PubMed

    Whelan, Brendan; Kumar, Shivani; Dowling, Jason; Begg, Jarrad; Lambert, Jonathan; Lim, Karen; Vinod, Shalini K; Greer, Peter B; Holloway, Lois

    2015-12-01

    To quantify the dose calculation error and resulting optimization uncertainty caused by performing inverse treatment planning on inaccurate electron density data (pseudo-CT) as needed for adaptive radiotherapy and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) based treatment planning. Planning Computer Tomography (CT) data from 10 cervix cancer patients was used to generate 4 pseudo-CT data sets. Each pseudo-CT was created based on an available method of assigning electron density to an anatomic image. An inversely modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) plan was developed on each planning CT. The dose calculation error caused by each pseudo-CT data set was quantified by comparing the dose calculated each pseudo-CT data set with that calculated on the original planning CT for the same IMRT plan. The optimization uncertainty introduced by the dose calculation error was quantified by re-optimizing the same optimization parameters on each pseudo-CT data set and comparing against the original planning CT. Dose differences were quantified by assessing the Equivalent Uniform Dose (EUD) for targets and relevant organs at risk. Across all pseudo-CT data sets and all organs, the absolute mean dose calculation error was 0.2 Gy, and was within 2 % of the prescription dose in 98.5 % of cases. Then absolute mean optimisation error was 0.3 Gy EUD, indicating that that inverse optimisation is impacted by the dose calculation error. However, the additional uncertainty introduced to plan optimisation is small compared the sources of variation which already exist. Use of inaccurate electron density data for inverse treatment planning results in a dose calculation error, which in turn introduces additional uncertainty into the plan optimization process. In this study, we showed that both of these effects are clinically acceptable for cervix cancer patients using four different pseudo-CT data sets. Dose calculation and inverse optimization on pseudo-CT is feasible for this patient cohort.

  12. Production of Phytophthora infestans-resistant potato (Solanum tuberosum) utilising Ensifer adhaerens OV14.

    PubMed

    Wendt, Toni; Doohan, Fiona; Mullins, Ewen

    2012-06-01

    Based on the use of Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation commodity crop improvement through genetic engineering is the fastest adopted crop technology in the world (James 2010). However, the complexity of the Agrobacterium patent landscape remains a challenge for non-patent holders who wish to generate novel varieties for a commercial purpose. The potential of non-Agrobacterium strains (Transbacter(™)) to modify a plant genome has previously been described. However, they are unlikely to be widely used without significant adjustments in transformation protocols in order to improve their gene transfer efficiencies. In this study we set out to identify alternative bacteria species that could (a) utilize vir genes for genetic transformation and (b) substitute for A. tumefaciens in existing transformation protocols, without a prerequisite for protocol modifications. To this end we isolated a collection (n=751) of plant-associated bacteria from the rhizosphere of commercially grown crops. Based on various screens, including plant transformation with the open-source vector pCAMBIA5105, we identified a strain of the bacterium Ensifer adhaerens with the capacity to transform both Arabidopsis thaliana (0.12%) and potato (mean transformation frequency 35.1%). Thereafter, Ensifer adhaerens was used to generate blight- (causative organism Phytophthora infestans) resistant potato using the Solanum bulbocastanum 'resistance to blight' (RB) gene. Resistant genotypes were confirmed by associated molecular analysis and resistant phenotypes demonstrated by the development of hypersensitive lesions on inoculated leaf tissue post-pathogen inoculation. These data confirm the potential of Ensifer-mediated transformation (EMT) as a novel platform for the high frequency generation of transgenic potato.

  13. Utilisation de sources et d'adjoints dragon pour les calculs TRIPOLI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camand, Corentin

    Numerical simulation is an essential part of reactor physics in order to understand the behaviour of neutrons inside and outside nuclear reactors. The objective is to solve the neutron transport equation in order to know the neutron flux and the interactions between neutrons and materials. We use neutronic simulation codes in order to solve this equation for criticallity problem, where we have a neutron multiplying environment, and shielding problems. There are two different types of numerical simulation techniques. Deterministic methods solve directly the transport equation using some approximations. The energy domain is divided in regions called groups, we use a spatial mesh for the geometry treatment, transport operator may also be simplified. Those approximations invole an inherent error. However these methods provide high computation time performances. Monte Carlo or stochastic methods follow explicitly a large number of neutrons as they travel through materials minimizing approximations. Continuous-energy and multigroup treatment are both available. Quantities calculated are random variables to which are associated statistical error called standard deviations. We have to simulate a very large number of neutrons if we want the calculation to converge and the results to be precise enough. As a matter of fact, computation time of these methods can be excessively large and represent their main weakness. The objective of this study is to set up a chaining method from a deterministic code to a Monte Carlo code, in order to improve the convergence of Monte Carlo calculations performed by the code TRIPOLI. We want to use datas calculated by the deterministic code DRAGON and use them in TRIPOLI. We will develop two methods. The first one will calculate source distribution in DRAGON and implement them in TRIPOLI as initial sources of a criticallity calculation. The objective is to accelerate the convergence of the neutrons sources, and save the first batches that are

  14. Body weight changes and outpatient medical care utilisation: Results of the MONICA/KORA cohorts S3/F3 and S4/F4

    PubMed Central

    Wolfenstetter, Silke B.; Menn, Petra; Holle, Rolf; Mielck, Andreas; Meisinger, Christa; von Lengerke, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Objectives: To test the effects of body weight maintenance, gain, and loss on health care utilisation in terms of outpatient visits to different kinds of physicians in the general adult population. Methods: Self-reported utilisation data were collected within two population-based cohorts (baseline surveys: MONICA-S3 1994/95 and KORA-S4 1999/2001; follow-ups: KORA-F3 2004/05 and KORA-F4 2006/08) in the region of Augsburg, Germany, and were pooled for present purposes. N=5,147 adults (complete cases) aged 25 to 64 years at baseline participated. Number of visits to general practitioners (GPs), internists, and other specialists as well as the total number of physician visits at follow-up were compared across 10 groups defined by body mass index (BMI) category maintenance or change. Body weight and height were measured anthropometrically. Hierarchical generalized linear regression analyses with negative binomial distribution adjusted for sex, age, socioeconomic status (SES), survey, and the need factors incident diabetes and first cancer between baseline and follow-up were conducted. Results: In fully adjusted models, compared to the group of participants that maintained normal weight from baseline to follow-up, the following groups had significantly higher GP utilisation rates: weight gain from normal weight (+36%), weight loss from preobesity (+39%), maintained preobesity (+34%), weight gain after preobesity (+43%), maintained moderate obesity (+48%), weight gain from moderate obesity (+107%), weight loss from severe obesity (+114%), and maintained severe obesity (+83%). Regarding internists, those maintaining moderate obesity reported +107% more visits; those with weight gain from moderate obesity reported +91%. The latter group also had +41% more consultations with other physicians. Across all physicians, mean number of visits were estimated at 7.8 per year for maintained normal weight, 9 for maintained preobesity, 11 for maintained moderate obesity, and 12 for

  15. Hospital admissions for severe mental illness in England: Changes in equity of utilisation at the small area level between 2006 and 2010

    PubMed Central

    White, Jonathan; Gutacker, Nils; Jacobs, Rowena; Mason, Anne

    2014-01-01

    Severe Mental Illness (SMI) encompasses a range of chronic conditions including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and psychoses. Patients with SMI often require inpatient psychiatric care. Despite equity being a key objective in the English National Health Service (NHS) and in many other health care systems worldwide, little is known about the socio-economic equity of hospital care utilisation for patients with SMI and how it has changed over time. This analysis seeks to address that gap in the evidence base. We exploit a five-year (2006–2010) panel dataset of admission rates at small area level (n = 162,410). The choice of control variables was informed by a systematic literature search. To assess changes in socio-economic equity of utilisation, OLS-based standardisation was first used to conduct analysis of discrete deprivation groups. Geographical inequity was then illustrated by plotting standardised and crude admission rates at local purchaser level. Lastly, formal statistical tests for changes in socio-economic equity of utilisation were applied to a continuous measure of deprivation using pooled negative binomial regression analysis, adjusting for a range of risk factors. Our results suggest that one additional percentage point of area income deprivation is associated with a 1.5% (p < 0.001) increase in admissions for SMI after controlling for population size, age, sex, prevalence of SMI in the local population, as well as other need and supply factors. This finding is robust to sensitivity analyses, suggesting that a pro-poor inequality in utilisation exists for SMI-related inpatient services. One possible explanation is that the supply or quality of primary, community or social care for people with mental health problems is suboptimal in deprived areas. Although there is some evidence that inequity has reduced over time, the changes are small and not always robust to sensitivity analyses. PMID:25262312

  16. A framework for the analysis of the security of supply of utilising carbon dioxide as a chemical feedstock.

    PubMed

    Fraga, Eric S; Ng, Melvin

    2015-01-01

    Recent developments in catalysts have enhanced the potential for the utilisation of carbon dioxide as a chemical feedstock. Using the appropriate energy efficient catalyst enables a range of chemical pathways leading to desirable products. In doing so, CO2 provides an economically and environmentally beneficial source of C1 feedstock, while improving the issues relating to security of supply that are associated with fossil-based feedstocks. However, the dependence on catalysts brings other supply chains into consideration, supply chains that may also have security of supply issues. The choice of chemical pathways for specific products will therefore entail an assessment not only of economic factors but also the security of supply issues for the catalysts. This is a multi-criteria decision making problem. In this paper, we present a modified 4A framework based on the framework suggested by the Asian Pacific Energy Research centre for macro-economic applications. The 4A methodology is named after the criteria used to compare alternatives: availability, acceptability, applicability and affordability. We have adapted this framework for the consideration of alternative chemical reaction processes using a micro-economic outlook. Data from a number of sources were collected and used to quantify each of the 4A criteria. A graphical representation of the assessments is used to support the decision maker in comparing alternatives. The framework not only allows for the comparison of processes but also highlights current limitations in the CCU processes. The framework presented can be used by a variety of stakeholders, including regulators, investors, and process industries, with the aim of identifying promising routes within a broader multi-criteria decision making process. PMID:26534861

  17. Insights into the Dekkera bruxellensis genomic landscape: comparative genomics reveals variations in ploidy and nutrient utilisation potential amongst wine isolates.

    PubMed

    Borneman, Anthony R; Zeppel, Ryan; Chambers, Paul J; Curtin, Chris D

    2014-02-01

    The yeast Dekkera bruxellensis is a major contaminant of industrial fermentations, such as those used for the production of biofuel and wine, where it outlasts and, under some conditions, outcompetes the major industrial yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In order to investigate the level of inter-strain variation that is present within this economically important species, the genomes of four diverse D. bruxellensis isolates were compared. While each of the four strains was shown to contain a core diploid genome, which is clearly sufficient for survival, two of the four isolates have a third haploid complement of chromosomes. The sequences of these additional haploid genomes were both highly divergent from those comprising the diploid core and divergent between the two triploid strains. Similar to examples in the Saccharomyces spp. clade, where some allotriploids have arisen on the basis of enhanced ability to survive a range of environmental conditions, it is likely these strains are products of two independent hybridisation events that may have involved multiple species or distinct sub-species of Dekkera. Interestingly these triploid strains represent the vast majority (92%) of isolates from across the Australian wine industry, suggesting that the additional set of chromosomes may confer a selective advantage in winery environments that has resulted in these hybrid strains all-but replacing their diploid counterparts in Australian winery settings. In addition to the apparent inter-specific hybridisation events, chromosomal aberrations such as strain-specific insertions and deletions and loss-of-heterozygosity by gene conversion were also commonplace. While these events are likely to have affected many phenotypes across these strains, we have been able to link a specific deletion to the inability to utilise nitrate by some strains of D. bruxellensis, a phenotype that may have direct impacts in the ability for these strains to compete with S. cerevisiae. PMID:24550744

  18. Utilisation de la mélatonine pour le sommeil chez les enfants en bonne santé

    PubMed Central

    Janjua, Irvin; Goldman, Ran D.

    2016-01-01

    Résumé Question Une maman a amené son garçon de 12 ans me consulter à mon bureau. Elle s’inquiète, car il a de la difficulté à s’endormir presque tous les soirs. Elle travaille par quarts et elle prend elle-même de la mélatonine pour l’aider à s’endormir. Elle m’a demandé si son garçon pouvait aussi prendre de la mélatonine. Quels sont les recommandations et les éléments à considérer avant d’utiliser la mélatonine chez les enfants et les adolescents en bonne santé? Réponse L’insomnie est rapportée chez jusqu’à un quart des enfants en bonne santé et chez les trois quarts des enfants atteints d’une affection psychiatrique ou neurodéveloppementale, ce qui entraîne des conséquences négatives. Pour les enfants atteints du syndrome de retard de phase du sommeil, la mélatonine pourrait s’avérer utile lorsque jumelée à une évaluation de l’insomnie et à un suivi régulier. La mélatonine pourrait être envisagée pour des enfants sans diagnostic d’insomnie qui ont une bonne hygiène du sommeil. Bien qu’elle semble sans danger, il n’existe pas de données probantes en faveur de l’emploi systématique de la mélatonine chez les enfants en bonne santé.

  19. Utilisation of glycogen, ATP and arginine phosphate in exercise and recovery in terrestrial red crabs, Gecarcoidea natalis.

    PubMed

    Morris, Stephen; Adamczewska, Agnieszka M

    2002-11-01

    Intermittent locomotion by terrestrial crustaceans may under specific circumstances increase walking distance and may allow partial re-oxidization of anaerobic products, and replenishment of ATP and arginine phosphate. The Christmas Island red crab G. natalis undertakes a substantial breeding migration each year. The leg muscles of G. natalis subjected to bouts of 2.5 min walking and 2.5 min rest were severely anaerobic. Adenylate energy charge and the large arginine phosphate stores were greatly reduced. Walking for 4 min with pauses of only 1 min exacerbated the anaerobiosis and utilised 50% of the endogenous muscle glycogen. Post-exercise, the adenylate energy charge recovered before the arginine phosphate charge and a large and persistent hyperglycaemia accompanied the restoration of glycogen. Arginine phosphate functioned as a large, longer term, energy reservoir-almost as part of the adenylate pool. Gluconeogenesis is yet to be generally substantiated in decapod crustaceans but G. natalis appears to remove lactate slowly and to reincorporate exogenous glucose into muscle glycogen in the same time frame as lactate removal from the haemolymph. The 4:1 exercise/pause regimen facilitated access to energy stores and increased walking distance, and it allowed L-lactate and H(+) efflux from the muscle during pausing. These responses are similar to those of G. natalis in the field, except during the migration when walking was entirely aerobic. Determinations of adenylate, fuel and arginine phosphate reserves and usage during the migration are required together with more detailed behavioral analysis to resolve the dichotomy in metabolic response.

  20. Utilisation of a cryptic non-canonical donor splice site of the gene encoding PARAFIBROMIN is associated with familial isolated primary hyperparathyroidism

    PubMed Central

    Bradley, K; Cavaco, B; Bowl, M; Harding, B; Young, A; Thakker, R

    2005-01-01

    More than 99% of all splice sites conform to consensus sequences that usually include the invariant dinucleotides gt and ag at the 5' and 3' ends of the introns, respectively. We report on the utilisation of a non-consensus (non-canonical) donor splice site within exon 1 of the HRPT2 gene in familial isolated primary hyperparathyroidism (FIHP). HRPT2 mutations are more frequently associated with the hyperparathyroidism-jaw tumour syndrome (HPT-JT). Patients with FIHP were identified to have a donor splice site mutation, IVS1+1 g→a, and the consequences of this for RNA processing were investigated. The mutant mRNA lacked 30 bp and DNA sequence analysis revealed this to result from utilisation of an alternative cryptic non-canonical donor splice site (gaatgt) in exon 1 together with the normally occurring acceptor splice site in intron 1. Translation of this mutant mRNA predicted the in-frame loss of 10 amino acids in the encoded protein, termed PARAFIBROMIN. Thus, these FIHP patients are utilising a ga-ag splice site pair, which until recently was considered to be incompatible with splicing but is now known to occur as a rare (<0.02%) normal splicing variant. PMID:16061557

  1. The positive impact of the early-feeding of a plant-based diet on its future acceptance and utilisation in rainbow trout.

    PubMed

    Geurden, Inge; Borchert, Peter; Balasubramanian, Mukundh N; Schrama, Johan W; Dupont-Nivet, Mathilde; Quillet, Edwige; Kaushik, Sadasivam J; Panserat, Stéphane; Médale, Françoise

    2013-01-01

    Sustainable aquaculture, which entails proportional replacement of fish-based feed sources by plant-based ingredients, is impeded by the poor growth response frequently seen in fish fed high levels of plant ingredients. This study explores the potential to improve, by means of early nutritional exposure, the growth of fish fed plant-based feed. Rainbow trout swim-up fry were fed for 3 weeks either a plant-based diet (diet V, V-fish) or a diet containing fishmeal and fish oil as protein and fat source (diet M, M-fish). After this 3-wk nutritional history period, all V- or M-fish received diet M for a 7-month intermediate growth phase. Both groups were then challenged by feeding diet V for 25 days during which voluntary feed intake, growth, and nutrient utilisation were monitored (V-challenge). Three isogenic rainbow trout lines were used for evaluating possible family effects. The results of the V-challenge showed a 42% higher growth rate (P = 0.002) and 30% higher feed intake (P = 0.005) in fish of nutritional history V compared to M (averaged over the three families). Besides the effects on feed intake, V-fish utilized diet V more efficiently than M-fish, as reflected by the on average 18% higher feed efficiency (P = 0.003). We noted a significant family effect for the above parameters (P<0.001), but the nutritional history effect was consistent for all three families (no interaction effect, P>0.05). In summary, our study shows that an early short-term exposure of rainbow trout fry to a plant-based diet improves acceptance and utilization of the same diet when given at later life stages. This positive response is encouraging as a potential strategy to improve the use of plant-based feed in fish, of interest in the field of fish farming and animal nutrition in general. Future work needs to determine the persistency of this positive early feeding effect and the underlying mechanisms.

  2. Retrieving the availability of light in the ocean utilising spectral signatures of vibrational Raman scattering in hyper-spectral satellite measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinter, T.; Rozanov, V. V.; Burrows, J. P.; Bracher, A.

    2015-05-01

    The availability of light in the ocean is an important parameter for the determination of phytoplankton photosynthesis processes and primary production from satellite data. It is also a useful parameter for other applications, e.g. the determination of heat fluxes. In this study, a method was developed utilising the vibrational Raman scattering (VRS) effect of water molecules to determine the number of photons available in the ocean water, which is expressed by the depth integrated scalar irradiance E0. Radiative transfer simulations with the SCIATRAN fully coupled ocean-atmosphere radiative transfer model (RTM) show clearly the relationship of E0 with the strength of the VRS signal measured at the top of the atmosphere (TOA). Taking advantage of VRS structures in hyper-spectral satellite measurements, a retrieval technique to derive E0 in the wavelength region from 390 to 444.5 nm was developed. This approach uses the weighting function differential optical absorption spectroscopy (WF-DOAS) technique, applied to TOA radiances, measured by the Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography (SCIAMACHY). Based on the approach of Vountas et al. (2007), where the DOAS method was used to fit modelled spectra of VRS, the method was improved by using the weighting function of VRS (VRS-WF) in the DOAS fit. This was combined with a look-up table (LUT) technique, where the E0 value was obtained for each VRS satellite fit directly. The VRS-WF and the LUT were derived from calculations with the SCIATRAN RTM (Rozanov et al., 2014). RTM simulations for different chlorophyll a concentrations and illumination conditions clearly show that low fit factors of VRS retrieval results correspond to low amounts of light in the water column and vice versa. Exemplarily, 1 month of SCIAMACHY data were processed and a global map of the depth integrated scalar irradiance E0 was retrieved. Spectral structures of VRS were clearly identified in the radiance measurements of

  3. Retrieving the availability of light in the ocean utilising spectral signatures of Vibrational Raman Scattering in hyper-spectral satellite measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinter, T.; Rozanov, V. V.; Burrows, J. P.; Bracher, A.

    2015-01-01

    The availability of light in the ocean is an important parameter for the determination of phytoplankton photosynthesis processes and primary production from satellite data. It is also a useful parameter for other applications, e.g. the determination of heat fluxes. In this study, a method was developed utilising the vibrational Raman scattering (VRS) effect of water molecules to determine the amount of photons available in the ocean water, which is expressed by the depth integrated scalar irradiance E0. Radiative transfer simulations with the fully coupled ocean-atmosphere Radiative Transfer Model (RTM) SCIATRAN show clearly the relationship of E0 to the strength of the VRS signal measured at the top of the atmosphere (TOA). Taking advantage of VRS structures in hyper-spectral satellite measurements a retrieval technique to derive E0 in the wavelength region from 390 to 444.5 nm was developed. This approach uses the Weighting Function Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (WF-DOAS) technique, applied to TOA radiances, measured by the Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography (SCIAMACHY). Based on the approach of Vountas et al. (2007), where the DOAS method was used to fit modelled spectra of VRS, the method was improved by using the weighting function of VRS (VRS-WF) in the DOAS fit. This was combined with a look-up table (LUT) technique, where the E0 value was obtained for each VRS satellite fit directly. The VRS-WF and the LUT were derived from calculations with the RTM SCIATRAN (Rozanov et al., 2014). RTM simulations for different chlorophyll a concentrations and illumination conditions clearly show, that low fit factors of VRS retrieval results correspond to low amounts of light in the water column and vice versa. Exemplary, one month of SCIAMACHY data were processed and

  4. Grassland systems of red meat production: integration between biodiversity, plant nutrient utilisation, greenhouse gas emissions and meat nutritional quality.

    PubMed

    Dawson, L E R; O'Kiely, P; Moloney, A P; Vipond, J E; Wylie, A R G; Carson, A F; Hyslop, J

    2011-08-01

    swards with a high proportion of clover and high-sugar grasses. Relative to feeding conserved forage or concentrates, grazing fresh grass not only reduces GHG emissions but also enhances the fatty acid composition of meat in terms of consumer health. It is possible to influence biodiversity, nutrient utilisation, GHG emissions and the nutritional quality of meat in grass-based systems, but each of these parameters is intrinsically linked and should not be considered in isolation. Interactions between these parameters must be considered carefully when policies are being developed, in order to ensure that strategies designed to achieve positive gains in one category do not lead to a negative impact in another. Some win-win outcomes are identified.

  5. Utilisation de la Fibre a Deux Coeurs Non-Lineaire dans les Lasers EN Fibre et Lignes de Transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Essiambre, Rene-Jean

    L'utilisation des proprietes non-lineaires de la fibre optique a deux coeurs identiques constitue l'objet de cette etude numerique. Les effets non-lineaires dans les fibres optiques ainsi que la theorie des modes couples sont abordes pour decrire le comportement de la fibre a deux coeurs non-lineaire. On a d'abord analyse les proprietes de transmission d'une telle fibre autour de la puissance critique lorsqu'elle est recouplee a elle-meme dans une configuration Sagnac pour differentes valeurs de dispersion. Nous avons observe des effets simultanes de compression et de filtrage non-lineaire des impulsions injectees. On a ensuite considere configuration de laser en fibre incluant une fibre a deux coeurs comme element passif de synchronisation modale adjoint a un mileu amplificateur externe ayant une largeur de gain finie. On a demontre qu'il etait possible de generer ainsi des solitons fondamentaux de puissance variable et ce, avec tres peu d'ondes dispersives. Ces solitons possedent un spectre qui est de l'ordre de grandeur de la largeur du milieu de gain du laser et ils ne sont amplifies que faiblement a chaque passage. La combinaison d'une fibre a deux coeurs et d'un milieu de gain de largeur de bande finie peut egalement etre utilisee pour controler certains effets non-lineaires d'ordre superieur comme l'auto -glissement en frequence du soliton (diffusion Raman intra -impulsion) qui deplace le spectre d'un soliton vers les basses frequences. Pour une certaine plage de parametres on obtient une stabilisation periodique du deplacement en frequence du soliton. La zone de stabilite correspondant a une longueur de fibre de l'ordre de quelques kilometres et a une duree de soliton d'environ deux a cinq picosecondes. Un tel dispositif semble bien adapte pour la transmission d'information par solitons sur de longues distances dans un nouveau regime d'operation. Enfin, tout au long de l'ouvrage, on retrouve des analyses reliees a des systemes deja existants et on situe les

  6. Utilisation D'un Modulateur de Phase Optique pour Realiser L'asservissement de la Frequence D'un Laser a Semi-Conducteurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levesque, Marc

    Cet ouvrage porte sur l'utilisation d'un modulateur de phase optique dans une boucle permettant d'asservir la frequence d'un laser a semi-conducteurs a une reference de frequence optique, en l'occurrence une vapeur atomique de rubidium 87. Nous y etudions principalement les mecanismes de generation du signal d'erreur. Un montage experimental est d'abord presente et la caracterisation complete du modulateur de phase est effectuee. Nous analysons ensuite les proprietes statiques du signal d'erreur dans le cas ou le signal applique au modulateur est periodique. Nous discutons de l'influence de parametres tels que la frequence et l'indice de modulation et la presence d'un effet Fabry -Perot accompagnant la modulation de phase. Enfin, nous montrons aussi qu'il est possible d'obtenir un signal d'erreur lorsque le signal de modulation est une sequence binaire aleatoire plutot qu'un signal periodique. Cela permet entre autres d'utiliser le meme modulateur de phase pour les fins de transmission et d'asservissement.

  7. Effect of a national requirement to introduce named accountable general practitioners for patients aged 75 or older in England: regression discontinuity analysis of general practice utilisation and continuity of care

    PubMed Central

    Barker, Isaac; Lloyd, Therese; Steventon, Adam

    2016-01-01

    Objective To assess the effect of introducing named accountable general practitioners (GPs) for patients aged 75 years on patterns of general practice utilisation, including continuity of care. Design Regression discontinuity design applied to data from the Clinical Practice Research Datalink to estimate the treatment effect for compliers aged 75. Setting 200 general practices in England. Participants 255 469 patients aged between 65 and 85, after excluding those aged 75. Intervention From April 2014, general practices in England were required to offer patients aged 75 or over a named accountable GP. This study compared having named accountable GPs for patients aged just over 75 with usual care provided for patients just under 75. Outcomes Number of contacts (face-to-face or telephone) with GPs, longitudinal continuity of care (usual provider of care, or UPC, index), number of referrals to specialist care and numbers of common diagnostic tests. Outcomes were measured over 9 months following assignment to a named accountable GP and for a comparable period for those unassigned. Results The proportion of patients with a named accountable GP increased from 3.5% to 79.8% at age 75. No statistically significant effects were detected for continuity of care (estimated treatment effect 0.00, 95% CI −0.01 to 0.02) or the number of GP contacts per person (estimated treatment effect −0.11, 95% CI −0.31 to 0.09) over 9 months. No significant change was seen in the number of referrals, blood pressure or HbA1c diagnostic tests per person. A statistically significant treatment effect of −0.05 cholesterol tests per person (95% CI −0.07 to −0.02) was estimated; however, sensitivity analysis indicated that this effect predated the introduction of named accountable GPs. Conclusions Continuity of care is valued by patients, but the named accountable GP initiative did not improve continuity of care or change patterns of GP utilisation in the first 9 months of the

  8. Effect of offering dairy cows diets differing in phosphorus concentration over four successive lactations: 2. Health, fertility, bone phosphorus reserves and nutrient utilisation.

    PubMed

    Ferris, C P; McCoy, M A; Patterson, D C; Kilpatrick, D J

    2010-04-01

    This experiment examined the long-term effects of offering diets containing low levels of dietary phosphorus (P) on dairy cow health, fertility and bone composition, and the effect of dietary P level on nutrient utilisation. One hundred winter-calving Holstein-Friesian dairy cows were offered diets containing either 'high' or 'low' levels of dietary P over a 4-year period. Rations offered during the winter included grass silage, maize silage (70 : 30 dry matter (DM) basis, approximately) and concentrates (10.0 to 12.0 kg/cow per day). During the summer periods in years 1 and 2, half of the cows grazed both day and night, while the remaining cows grazed by day, and were housed by night and offered grass silage. During years 3 and 4, all cows grazed both day and night during the summer period. Concentrate feed levels during the summer periods were 3.0 to 4.0 kg/cow per day. Different dietary P levels were achieved by offering concentrates containing either high or low P levels during the winter period (approximately 7.0 or 4.4 g P/kg DM, respectively) and during the summer period (approximately 6.8 or 3.6 g P/kg DM, respectively). Total ration P levels averaged 4.9 and 3.6 g P/kg DM for the high and low P winter diets, respectively, and 4.2 and 3.6 g P/kg DM for the high and low P summer diets, respectively. A total of 95, 70, 50 and 22 cows completed each of lactations from 1 to 4, respectively. Neither the incidence of lameness or mastitis, or milk somatic cell count, were affected by dietary P level (P > 0.05), while none of the fertility parameters recorded in any of lactations from 1 to 4 was affected by the dietary P level (P > 0.05). Dietary P level had no effect on the specific gravity, ash or calcium content of rib cortical bone cores (n = 78 cows), while the P content of cortical bone (g/kg fresh, g/kg DM and mg/ml fresh bone) was lower with cows offered low P diets (P < 0.05). Dietary P level had no significant effect on the digestibility of either the DM

  9. Le recours aux modeles dans l'enseignement de la biologie au secondaire : Conceptions d'enseignantes et d'enseignants et modes d'utilisation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varlet, Madeleine

    Le recours aux modeles et a la modelisation est mentionne dans la documentation scientifique comme un moyen de favoriser la mise en oeuvre de pratiques d'enseignement-apprentissage constructivistes pour pallier les difficultes d'apprentissage en sciences. L'etude prealable du rapport des enseignantes et des enseignants aux modeles et a la modelisation est alors pertinente pour comprendre leurs pratiques d'enseignement et identifier des elements dont la prise en compte dans les formations initiale et disciplinaire peut contribuer au developpement d'un enseignement constructiviste des sciences. Plusieurs recherches ont porte sur ces conceptions sans faire de distinction selon les matieres enseignees, telles la physique, la chimie ou la biologie, alors que les modeles ne sont pas forcement utilises ou compris de la meme maniere dans ces differentes disciplines. Notre recherche s'est interessee aux conceptions d'enseignantes et d'enseignants de biologie au secondaire au sujet des modeles scientifiques, de quelques formes de representations de ces modeles ainsi que de leurs modes d'utilisation en classe. Les resultats, que nous avons obtenus au moyen d'une serie d'entrevues semi-dirigees, indiquent que globalement leurs conceptions au sujet des modeles sont compatibles avec celle scientifiquement admise, mais varient quant aux formes de representations des modeles. L'examen de ces conceptions temoigne d'une connaissance limitee des modeles et variable selon la matiere enseignee. Le niveau d'etudes, la formation prealable, l'experience en enseignement et un possible cloisonnement des matieres pourraient expliquer les differentes conceptions identifiees. En outre, des difficultes temporelles, conceptuelles et techniques peuvent freiner leurs tentatives de modelisation avec les eleves. Toutefois, nos resultats accreditent l'hypothese que les conceptions des enseignantes et des enseignants eux-memes au sujet des modeles, de leurs formes de representation et de leur approche

  10. A comparison of the Greenland Ice-Core and IntCal timescales through the Laschamp geomagnetic excursion, utilising new 14c data from Tenaghi Philippon, Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staff, Richard A.; Hardiman, Mark; Bronk Ramsey, Christopher; Koutsodendris, Andreas; Pross, Jörg

    2016-04-01

    Cosmogenic radionuclides, such as 10Be and 14C, share a common production signal, with their formation in the Earth's upper atmosphere modulated by changes to the geomagnetic field, as well as variations in the intensity of the solar wind. Here, we present 54 new 14C measurements from a terrestrial fen peat core extracted from the classical site of Tenaghi Philippon, NE Greece, contiguously spanning the time period between ~48,000 and 39,000 cal. BP. Utilising the most pronounced cosmogenic production peak of the last 100,000 years - that associated with the Laschamp geomagnetic excursion circa 41,000 years ago - we exploit this common production signal, comparing Greenland 10Be with our Tenaghi Philippon 14C record, thereby providing a means to assess the concordance between the radiocarbon (IntCal) and Greenland ice-core (GICC05) timescales themselves for this, the oldest portion of the radiocarbon technique.

  11. Génération d'un supercontinumm utilisant le doublage et le triplage de fréquence dans une fibre microstructurée

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lesvigne, C.; Tombelaine, V.; Grossard, L.; Leproux, P.; Blondy, J. M.; Auguste, J. L.; Roy, P.; Couderc, V.; Huss, G.; Pioger, P. H.

    2006-10-01

    Nous présentons une nouvelle méthode permettant de générer un supercontinuum ultra large entre 240 et 1800 nm. Ce principe utilise une source de pompage unique à 1064 nm injectée dans une fibre optique microstructurée fortement non linéaire et biréfringente à profil innovant. L'élargissement spectral est engendré par des effets d'instabilités modulationnelles en fort régime de dispersion normale. L'initiation de ce phénomène est réalisée grâce à un doublage et un triplage de la longueur d'onde de pompe directement dans la fibre.

  12. A survey of accessibility and utilisation of chiropractic services for wheelchair-users in the United Kingdom: What are the issues?

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background People with physical disabilities experience barriers to healthcare across all services despite a legal and moral obligation to the contrary. Complementary medicine is considered as supplementary to conventional care and integration of these approaches is essential to achieve optimal care. This paper explores the utilisation of chiropractic services and practitioner experiences of treating wheelchair-users which appears under-reported. Methods A 20 item questionnaire was posted to 250 randomly selected chiropractors registered with the General Chiropractic Council. Follow-up questionnaires were sent 7 days after the initial return date. Quantitative data were subjected to frequency analysis. Results The response rate was 64% (n = 161). The majority (66%) of chiropractors had been in practice less than 10 years and were practice owners (50%). Fifty-two percent of chiropractors sampled had treated a patient in a wheelchair in the previous 5 years. The majority (87%) had treated between 1 and 5 such patients. Patients with multiple sclerosis, stroke and cerebral palsy most commonly presented for treatment. The majority of patients' presenting complaint was musculoskeletal in origin, primarily for pain control. Only 13% of respondents worked in a fully accessible clinic. Impracticality of alterations was the most common reason for inaccessibility. Conclusions Wheelchair-users seem to be an underserved patient group in relation to chiropractic services. Chiropractic management is primarily utilised for pain control in patients with physical disabilities in which mobility may be improved or maintained. Co-management of wheelchair-users with GPs appears to be desirable in order to achieve optimal patient care however more research is required regarding the efficacy of chiropractic treatment for a range of disabling conditions. Physical access was identified as a key barrier to accessing care. PMID:21914167

  13. Utilisation of a thoracic oncology database to capture radiological and pathological images for evaluation of response to chemotherapy in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma

    PubMed Central

    Carey, George B; Kazantsev, Stephanie; Surati, Mosmi; Rolle, Cleo E; Kanteti, Archana; Sadiq, Ahad; Bahroos, Neil; Raumann, Brigitte; Madduri, Ravi; Dave, Paul; Starkey, Adam; Hensing, Thomas; Husain, Aliya N; Vokes, Everett E; Vigneswaran, Wickii; Armato, Samuel G; Kindler, Hedy L; Salgia, Ravi

    2012-01-01

    Objective An area of need in cancer informatics is the ability to store images in a comprehensive database as part of translational cancer research. To meet this need, we have implemented a novel tandem database infrastructure that facilitates image storage and utilisation. Background We had previously implemented the Thoracic Oncology Program Database Project (TOPDP) database for our translational cancer research needs. While useful for many research endeavours, it is unable to store images, hence our need to implement an imaging database which could communicate easily with the TOPDP database. Methods The Thoracic Oncology Research Program (TORP) imaging database was designed using the Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap) platform, which was developed by Vanderbilt University. To demonstrate proof of principle and evaluate utility, we performed a retrospective investigation into tumour response for malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) patients treated at the University of Chicago Medical Center with either of two analogous chemotherapy regimens and consented to at least one of two UCMC IRB protocols, 9571 and 13473A. Results A cohort of 22 MPM patients was identified using clinical data in the TOPDP database. After measurements were acquired, two representative CT images and 0–35 histological images per patient were successfully stored in the TORP database, along with clinical and demographic data. Discussion We implemented the TORP imaging database to be used in conjunction with our comprehensive TOPDP database. While it requires an additional effort to use two databases, our database infrastructure facilitates more comprehensive translational research. Conclusions The investigation described herein demonstrates the successful implementation of this novel tandem imaging database infrastructure, as well as the potential utility of investigations enabled by it. The data model presented here can be utilised as the basis for further development of other larger

  14. ICT & OTs: a model of information and communications technology acceptance and utilisation by occupational therapists (part 2).

    PubMed

    Schaper, Louise; Pervan, Graham

    2007-01-01

    The research reported in this paper describes the development, empirical validation and analysis of a model of technology acceptance by Australian occupational therapists. The study described involved the collection of quantitative data through a national survey. The theoretical significance of this work is that it uses a thoroughly constructed research model, with one of the largest sample sizes ever tested (n=1605), to extend technology acceptance research into the health sector. Results provide strong support for the model. This work reveals the complexity of the constructs and relationships that influence technology acceptance and highlights the need to include sociotechnical and system issues in studies of technology acceptance in healthcare to improve information system implementation success in this arena. The results of this study have practical and theoretical implications for health informaticians and researchers in the field of health informatics and information systems, tertiary educators, Commonwealth and State Governments and the allied health professions.

  15. The Implications of the National Minimum Wage for Training Practices and Skill Utilisation in the United Kingdom Hospitality Industry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Norris, Gill; Williams, Steve; Adam-Smith, Derek

    2003-01-01

    Two key issues thrown up by the 1999 introduction of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) in the United Kingdom are its likely impact on employers' training practices in low paying sectors of the economy and the implications for skills. Based on a study of the hospitality industry, this article assesses the limited significance of the differential,…

  16. The Effect of an Education Program Utilising PRECEDE Model on the Quality of Life in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taghdisi, M. H.; Borhani, M.; Solhi, M.; Afkari, M. E.; Hosseini, F.

    2012-01-01

    Background and objective: The problems caused by diabetes have direct and indirect impacts on the quality of life of diabetic patients. An increase of these problems means a decrease in a patient's quality of life. This study was conducted to assess the effect of the educational programme based on the precede model in promoting quality of life of…

  17. Utilising a Blended Ethnographic Approach to Explore the Online and Offline Lives of Pro-Ana Community Members

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dyke, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    The article critically interrogates contemporary discourses and practices around "anorexia nervosa" through an ethnographic study that moves between two sites: an online pro-anorexia (pro-ana) community, and a Local Authority-funded eating disorder prevention project located in schools and youth centres in the north of England. The article…

  18. One-year study of nitro-organic compounds and their relation to wood burning in PM10 aerosol from a rural site in Belgium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kahnt, Ariane; Behrouzi, Shabnam; Vermeylen, Reinhilde; Safi Shalamzari, Mohammad; Vercauteren, Jordy; Roekens, Edward; Claeys, Magda; Maenhaut, Willy

    2013-12-01

    Nitro-organic compounds were determined in a one-year set of atmospheric PM10 filter samples that were collected at a rural background site in Hamme, Belgium. In an earlier study, it was found that the site was substantially impacted by wood burning, making the filter samples appropriate for further investigations on wood burning indicators. In total, four groups of nitro-aromatic compounds (with molecular weights (MWs) of 139, 155, 169, and 183), α-pinene-related nitrooxy-organosulfates (MW 295), and the resin acid dehydroabietic acid (DHAA, MW 300) were quantified using liquid chromatography combined with negative ion electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. The annual mean concentrations were 0.94, 6.0, 7.7, 4.8, 7.8, and 1.76 ng m-3 for the sum of the nitrophenols (MW 139), 4-nitrocatechol (MW 155), the sums of the methyl-nitrocatechols (MW 169), of the dimethyl-nitrocatechols (MW 183), and of the α-pinene-related nitrooxy-organosulfates (MW 295), and DHAA (MW 300), respectively. 4-nitrocatechol, the sum of the methyl-nitrocatechols, and the sum of the dimethyl-nitrocatechols were substantially correlated with levoglucosan (r-values of 0.71, 0.66, and 0.65, respectively), consistent with their proposed origin from biomass burning. The nitro-aromatic compounds were also observed during the summer months, indicating a non-negligible usage of wood burning for domestic purposes at the site. The α-pinene-related nitrooxy-organosulfates (MW 295) were detected in high concentrations during the winter period, but they were poorly correlated with the biomass burning tracers. All of the targeted species showed a clear seasonal variation with highest concentrations in winter, followed by autumn, spring, and summer. Based on the DHAA measurements, it is suggested that burning of softwood is likely an important source for the formation of all the nitro-organic compounds measured.

  19. Progrès récents dans l'utilisation de la Chromatographie Gazeuse Inverse pour la détermination des propriétés acide-base des surfaces solides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papirer, E.; Brendlé, E.

    1998-01-01

    Inverse Gas Chromatography (IGC) is a method well suited for the study of divided solids, but also of fibres. In this paper, the principles of IGC, its advantages such as ease and rapidity of measurement, but also limitations due essentially to the energetic heterogeneity of the solid surfaces are discussed. Finally, a new procedure allowing to estimate the acidity and basicity of the surface involving topology concepts of the molecules used to probe the surface is presented. Experimental results of the Laboratory, but also results extracted from the literature concerning silica, titanium dioxide, poly(methyl methacrylate) and poly(ethylene) fibers, are taken to verify the proposed method. La chromatographie Gazeuse Inverse (CGI) s'avère comme une méthode de choix pour l'étude des solides divisés, mais aussi de fibres. Après avoir rappelé quelques principes de base de la CGI, les avantages de la méthode comme la facilité de mise en oeuvre, sa rapidité..., nous soulignerons ses limites qui sont essentiellement à attribuer à l'hétérogénéité énergétique des surfaces solides. Finalement, nous décrirons une nouvelle approche de l'acidité et de la basicité de surface grâce à l'utilisation des concepts de topologie des molécules employées pour sonder la surface. Des résultats expérimentaux obtenus au Laboratoire, mais aussi tirés de la littérature et concernant la silice, l'oxyde de titane, la poly(méthacrylate de méthyle) et les fibres de poly(éthylène), permettent d'illustrer la pertinence de la méthode proposée.

  20. Utilising bacterial communities associated with digested piggery effluent as a primary food source for the batch culture of Moina australiensis.

    PubMed

    Patil, Sayali S; Ward, Andrew J; Kumar, Martin S; Ball, Andrew S

    2010-05-01

    In this study, a cladoceran planktonic invertebrate, Moina australiensis was uniquely cultured in two stage digested piggery wastewater and fed associated piggery wastewater bacteria. The viability of M. australiensis cultured in digested piggery wastewater under closed dark conditions to limit phytoplankton activity was tested by determining suitable effluent total ammonia nitrogen (TAN) concentrations. The highest total M. australiensis biomass production 0.94+/-0.47g and the rate of population increase (r) 0.15+/-0.08 was recorded in the 30mgl(-1) TAN concentration treatment. The lowest 'r' values and decreased biomass production was observed with increasing TAN concentration levels. This study, also focused on profiling and quantification of the associated bacterial populations in the wastewater culture media and within the digestive tract of M. australiensis by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) which revealed the feeding specificity of M. australiensis towards "gamma-Proteobacteria." PMID:20089398

  1. Utilisation of satellite data in identification of geomorphic landform and its role in arsenic release in groundwater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, R. P.; Singh, N.; Shashtri, S.; Mukherjee, S.

    2014-11-01

    The present study was conducted to explore the influence of geomorphic features of the area on the mobilization of arsenic in groundwater. In this study, remote sensing and GIS techniques were used to prepare the geomorphic and slope map of the area. Different geomorphic features were identified on the basis of spectral signature on the LISS III and Landsat satellite image and field survey. Groundwater samples were collected from each representative geomorphic feature to inspect the arsenic contamination in the area. The study area is drained by the Brahmaputra river and its tributaries and contain mainly fluvial geomorphic units especially older flood plain, palaeochannels, oxbow lakes, channel islands; and hilly areas at some of the places. In this study it was observed that enrichment of arsenic in groundwater varies along the geomorphic units in following trends Paleochannel> Younger alluvial plain> Active flood plain> channel island > dissected hills. The above trend shows that a higher concentration of arsenic is found in the groundwater samples collected from the fluvial landforms as compared to those collected from structural landforms. Brahmaputra River and its tributaries carry the sediment load from the Himalayan foothills, which get deposited in these features during the lateral shift of the river's courses. Arsenic bearing minerals may get transported through river and deposit in the geomorphological features along with organic matter. The flat terrain of the area as seen from the slope map provides more residence time to water to infiltrate into the aquifer. The microbial degradation of organic matter generates the reducing environment and facilitates the dissolution of iron hydroxide thus releasing the adsorbed arsenic into the groundwater.

  2. Groundwater circulation and utilisation in an unconfined carbonate system - revealing the potential effect of climate change and humankind activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tóth, Ádám; Mádl-Szönyi, Judit

    2016-04-01

    Characteristics of gravitational groundwater flow systems in carbonate regions were presented by Mádl-Szönyi & Tóth (2015) based on theoretical considerations, identification and classification of groundwater flow-related field phenomena and numerical simulation. It was revealed that the changes of flow pattern in carbonate framework attributed to groundwater utilization and/or climate change are more apparent due to the effective hydraulic conductivity of carbonates. Consequently, natural or artificial disturbances of water level propagate farther, deeper and faster in carbonates than in siliciclastic basins. These changes could result in degradation and reorganization of hierarchical flow systems, modification of recharge and discharge areas and even alteration of physicochemical parameters (Mádl-Szönyi & Tóth, 2015). This paper presents the application of the gravity-driven regional groundwater flow concept to the hydrogeologically complex thick carbonate system of the Transdanubian Range, Hungary, depicting the flow pattern of the area and to a practical problem of a local study area, conflicts of interest of water supply and water use of a golf course. The question is how will the natural discharge on the golf course be influenced by the planned karst drinking water production well. In addition, the effects of climate change on this conflict were evaluated. We demonstrate the importance of the understanding the appropriate scale in karst studies and illustrate how the gravity-driven regional groundwater flow concept can help to determine it. For this purpose, the hydrogeological conditions of the study site were examined at different scales. The goals were to define the appropriate scale and reveal the effects of tectonic structures; and give prognoses for the possible impact of a planned drinking water well and climate change on the golf course based on numerical simulation. The study also showed the low geothermal potential of the area.

  3. Study-MATE: Using Text Messaging to Support Student Transition to University Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cahir, Jayde; Huber, Elaine; Handal, Boris; Dutch, Justin; Nixon, Mark

    2012-01-01

    Students are most likely to drop out of university when first attending. This article analyses the use of technology in supporting the transition process of "first time" university students enrolled in a second-year accounting course. Study-MATE, a study skills program utilising the university's learning management system (LMS)--Blackboard, Google…

  4. Improvement in mechanical properties of jute fibres through mild alkali treatment as demonstrated by utilisation of the Weibull distribution model.

    PubMed

    Roy, Aparna; Chakraborty, Sumit; Kundu, Sarada Prasad; Basak, Ratan Kumar; Majumder, Subhasish Basu; Adhikari, Basudam

    2012-03-01

    Chemically modified jute fibres are potentially useful as natural reinforcement in composite materials. Jute fibres were treated with 0.25%-1.0% sodium hydroxide (NaOH) solution for 0.5-48 h. The hydrophilicity, surface morphology, crystallinity index, thermal and mechanical characteristics of untreated and alkali treated fibres were studied.The two-parameter Weibull distribution model was applied to deal with the variation in mechanical properties of the natural fibres. Alkali treatment enhanced the tensile strength and elongation at break by 82% and 45%, respectively but decreased the hydrophilicity by 50.5% and the diameter of the fibres by 37%.

  5. Improvement in mechanical properties of jute fibres through mild alkali treatment as demonstrated by utilisation of the Weibull distribution model.

    PubMed

    Roy, Aparna; Chakraborty, Sumit; Kundu, Sarada Prasad; Basak, Ratan Kumar; Majumder, Subhasish Basu; Adhikari, Basudam

    2012-03-01

    Chemically modified jute fibres are potentially useful as natural reinforcement in composite materials. Jute fibres were treated with 0.25%-1.0% sodium hydroxide (NaOH) solution for 0.5-48 h. The hydrophilicity, surface morphology, crystallinity index, thermal and mechanical characteristics of untreated and alkali treated fibres were studied.The two-parameter Weibull distribution model was applied to deal with the variation in mechanical properties of the natural fibres. Alkali treatment enhanced the tensile strength and elongation at break by 82% and 45%, respectively but decreased the hydrophilicity by 50.5% and the diameter of the fibres by 37%. PMID:22209134

  6. Enhancing the quality of engineering education by utilising student feedback. Quality and the engineering student experience: an institutional approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sid Nair, Chenicheri; Patil, Arun; Mertova, Patricie

    2011-03-01

    This paper reports on the role of the current student experience questionnaire in gaining student views on their educational experiences while studying at a research-intensive university in Australia. In particular, the paper focuses on the experiences of engineering students. The paper goes on to examine the areas of best practice and those identified for improvement by students. A number of areas identified by engineering students as needing improvement fall within the teaching dimension; in particular, issues relating to feedback to students and clarity of explanation. Finally, the paper outlines some of the actions that have been taken by the university and the Faculty of Engineering based on the results.

  7. Resource utilisation by deep-sea megabenthos in the Canadian High Arctic (Baffin Bay and Parry Channel)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourgeois, Solveig; Witte, Ursula; Harrison, Ailish M.; Makela, Anni; Kazanidis, Georgios; Archambault, Philippe

    2016-04-01

    Ongoing climate change in the Arctic is causing drastic alteration of the Arctic marine ecosystem functioning, such as shifts in patterns of primary production, and modifying the present tight pelagic-benthic coupling. Subsequently benthic communities, which rely upon organic matter produced in the top layers of the Ocean, will also be affected by these changes. The benthic megafaunal communities play a significant role in ecological processes and ecosystem functioning (i.e. organic matter recycling, bioturbation, food source for the higher trophic levels…). Yet, information is scarce regarding the main food sources for dominant benthic organisms, and therefore the impact of the ongoing changes is difficult to assess. The goal of this study is to investigate the preferential feeding of different carbon sources by megabenthic organisms in the Canadian High Arctic and to identify environmental drivers which explain the observed trends. In summer 2013, benthic megafauna was collected at 9 stations spread along latitudinal (58 to 81°N) and longitudinal (62 to 114°W) transects in the Baffin Bay and Parry Channel, respectively. Carbon and nitrogen bulk stable isotope analyses (δ13C and δ15N) were performed on several species divided into groups according to their feeding type. This study highlights distinct trends in δ13C values of benthic organisms suggesting the importance of both phytoplankton and ice algae as carbon sources for megafauna in the Canadian High Arctic. The importance of physical and biological parameters as drivers of food web structure will be furthermore discussed.

  8. Effect of concentrate crude protein level on grass silage intake, milk yield and nutrient utilisation by dairy cows in early lactation.

    PubMed

    Kokkonen, T; Tesfa, A Tsehai; Tuori, M; Yrjänen, S; Syrjälä-Qvist, L

    2002-06-01

    Twenty-one multiparous dairy cows were fed concentrates containing three levels (119, 154 and 191 g/kg DM) of crude protein (CP) during the first ten weeks of lactation. Part of the grain and molassed sugar beat pulp was substituted with 0% (RSM0), 15% (RSM15) or 30% (RSM30) repeseed meal. Wilted grass silage was fed ad libitum after calving. The average response between RSM0 and RSM15 was +1.66 kg milk/d per percentage unit change in concentrate CP content. No further response occurred between RSM15 and RSM30. The positive effect of RSM inclusion was seen throughout the experimental period and was associated with increased plasma non esterified fatty acids (NEFA) and decreased plasma insulin concentration one week after calving, and higher efficiency of metabolisable energy utilisation for milk production. Digestibility of the diet remained unaffected. Milk and plasma urea tended to increase with RSM30 indicating excessive supply of rumen degradable protein. Because of the limited potential of cows to compensate for a deficit in feed protein supply by mobilising tissue protein, a substantial milk yield response can be achieved with a moderate level of protein supplementation during early lactation.

  9. Social work practice in the donation of human tissue for transplantation: utilising social work values and competencies to achieve effective outcomes for transplant patients and donor families.

    PubMed

    Forbe-Smith, Lyndall; Haire, Mary; Doneley, Mary

    2002-01-01

    In Queensland, Australia, senior social workers have pioneered the coordination of tissue donation at coronial autopsies, seeking consent for the donation of heart valve, bone and eye tissue after sudden deaths which have been reported to the coroner. The urgent need for tissue for transplantation is balanced with the counselling, information and practical needs of potential donor families in their shock and grief. Social work assessment, advocacy, liaison, counselling, crisis intervention and particularly communication skills have been utilised, both as an integral component of obtaining informed consent and in working with families' experience of grief and loss in sudden, traumatic bereavement. This tissue donation program, over a period of eight years, has maximised the availability of tissue with its high donation rates, while upholding the rights and needs of potential donor families through provision of an effective social work service. The paper will reflect upon key social work knowledge and processes which have respected the subjective experience of client and worker while working within a medical model.

  10. Bactériophages et phagothérapie: utilisation de virus naturels pour traiter les infections bactériennes

    PubMed Central

    Ravat, F.; Jault, P.; Gabard, J.

    2015-01-01

    Summary L’utilisation des bactériophages, prédateurs naturels des bactéries, est une technique pionnière efficace de lutte contre les infections bactériennes. Tombée dans l’oubli depuis un demi-siècle du coté occidental de l’ex-rideau de fer, elle fait toujours partie de l’arsenal thérapeutique des pays de l’ex-Europe de l’Est, au point de constituer une arme de choix dans la politique de santé publique de ces pays. l’émergence de bactéries multirésistantes et le risque de revenir à l’ère pré-antibiotique ont fait ressortir la phagothérapie de l’oubli injuste auquel elle avait été confinée. la biologie et la place du bactériophage dans la nature sont décrites ici. les tenants et les aboutissants de la phagothérapie et les conditions de son retour sur le devant de la scène sont explicitées. PMID:26668557

  11. Seasonal changes in light and temperature affect the balance between light harvesting and light utilisation components of photosynthesis in an evergreen understory shrub.

    PubMed

    Muller, Onno; Hikosaka, Kouki; Hirose, Tadaki

    2005-05-01

    In a temperate climate, evergreen species in the understory are exposed to large changes in photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) and temperature over the year. We determined the photosynthetic traits of leaves of an evergreen understory shrub Aucuba japonica at three sites at monthly intervals: understorys of a deciduous forest; an evergreen forest; and a gap in a mixed forest. This set up enabled us to separate the effects of seasonal change in PPFD and temperature on photosynthetic acclimation under natural conditions. The effects of PPFD and temperature were analysed by simple and multiple regression analyses. The amounts of light utilisation components (LU), represented by nitrogen and rubisco contents per area, were higher in winter, when temperature was low and PPFD was high. The LU relative to the amount of light harvesting components (LH), represented by chlorophyll a/b and rubisco/chlorophyll ratios, and the inverse of chlorophyll/nitrogen ratio were also higher in winter. We quantified the effects of PPFD and temperature on the LU and LH components. Across sites PPFD had stronger effects than air temperature, while within a site temperature had stronger effects on photosynthetic acclimation. We concluded that the photosynthetic apparatus is strongly affected by the prevailing PPFD at the time of leaf development. Within a given light regime, however, plants acclimated by increasing LU relative to LH primarily in response to temperature and to a lesser extent to PPFD.

  12. Utilisation of IGCC slag and clay steriles in soft mud bricks (by pressing) for use in building bricks manufacturing.

    PubMed

    Acosta, A; Iglesias, I; Aineto, M; Romero, M; Rincón, J Ma

    2002-01-01

    The subject of this study is the application to the construction of soft mud bricks (also known as pressed bricks), both green and heat-treated bodies, built from raw materials from Santa Cruz de Mudela, Ciudad Real, and IGCC slag from the power central of Puertollano (Ciudad Real, Spain). For this purpose, industrial level tests have been performed: the production of these kind of bricks from mixes of waste from ores of construction clays and to significant fraction of different ratios and clay granulometries mixed with IGCC slag. The results of this experimentation suggests that not only can IGCC slag be applied to a ceramic process, but also its use gives several advantages, as water and energy savings, as well as improvements on the final properties of products.

  13. Practice budgets and the patient mix of physicians - the effect of a remuneration system reform on health care utilisation.

    PubMed

    Schmitz, Hendrik

    2013-12-01

    This study analyses the effect of a change in the remuneration system for physicians on the treatment lengths as measured by the number of doctor visits using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel over the period 1995-2002. Specifically, I analyse the introduction of a remuneration cap (so called practice budgets) for physicians who treat publicly insured patients in 1997. I find evidence that the reform of 1997 did not change the extensive margin of doctor visits but strongly affected the intensive margin. The conditional number of doctor visits among publicly insured decreased while it increased among privately insured. This can be seen as evidence that physicians respond to the change in incentives induced by the reform by altering their patient mix.

  14. A new biological test utilising the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae for the rapid detection of toxic substances in water.

    PubMed

    Rumlova, Lubomira; Dolezalova, Jaroslava

    2012-05-01

    This study evaluates the toxic effects of five substances (atropine, fenitrothion, potassium cyanide, mercuric chloride and lead nitrate) on the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It describes a new biological toxicity test based on inhibition of S. cerevisiae viability and compares it with two standard toxicity tests based on Daphnia magna mobility inhibition (EN ISO 6341) and Vibrio fischeri bioluminiscence inhibition (EN ISO 11348-2). The new biological test -S. cerevisiae lethal test - is cheaper and 24 times faster than the D. magna test. The test speed is comparable with the V. fischeri test but the new test is more sensitive for some substances. The test indicates reliably the presence of all used toxicants in water in concentrations which are significantly lower than the concentration in toxic or lethal doses for man. Therefore, this new toxicity test could be proposed for rapid detection of toxic substances in water.

  15. An evaluation of extraction techniques for arsenic in staple diets (fish and rice) utilising both classical and enzymatic extraction methods.

    PubMed

    Sadee, Bashdar A; Foulkes, Mike E; Hill, Steve J

    2016-01-01

    Enzymatic extraction methods were evaluated with classical extraction approaches for the determination of arsenic in food. The extraction efficiency for total arsenic was determined by analysing CRM materials DORM-3 fish protein, NIES 106 rice flour and GBW10015 spinach. These were compared with total arsenic concentration determined using microwave-assisted acid digestion and ICP-MS. The total arsenic concentrations in the CRM materials were in good agreement with the certified values. Enzymatic hydrolysis using trypsin has been successfully employed to extract arsenic species in DORM-3 and fish samples. Whilst this method of hydrolysing the proteins worked well for the fish samples, an alternative approach was required to facilitate the digestion of cellulose in plant materials. However, enzymatic extraction using cellulase was found to give unsatisfactory results for both the NIES and GBW10015 CRM materials. Dilute nitric acid (1% HNO3) was found to give a more efficient extraction for arsenic species in the same CRM materials and rice samples. The study was extended to evaluate a range of real samples. Total arsenic concentrations in 13 different types of fish tissue were determined following microwave-assisted acid digestion using nitric acid/hydrogen peroxide, followed by measurement using HPLC-ICP-MS for speciation analysis. The results obtained for fish were in the range of 3.53-98.80 µg g(-1) As (dry weight). Similarly, the results of 17 rice samples were in the range of 0.054-0.823 µg g(-1). This study demonstrates the importance of selecting an appropriate extraction technique for the quantitative measurement of arsenic species in food. PMID:26760914

  16. A full body musculoskeletal model based on flexible multibody simulation approach utilised in bone strain analysis during human locomotion.

    PubMed

    Al Nazer, R; Klodowski, A; Rantalainen, T; Heinonen, A; Sievänen, H; Mikkola, A

    2011-06-01

    Load-induced strains applied to bone can stimulate its development and adaptation. In order to quantify the incident strains within the skeleton, in vivo implementation of strain gauges on the surfaces of bone is typically used. However, in vivo strain measurements require invasive methodology that is challenging and limited to certain regions of superficial bones only such as the anterior surface of the tibia. Based on our previous study [Al Nazer et al. (2008) J Biomech. 41:1036-1043], an alternative numerical approach to analyse in vivo strains based on the flexible multibody simulation approach was proposed. The purpose of this study was to extend the idea of using the flexible multibody approach in the analysis of bone strains during physical activity through integrating the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique within the framework. In order to investigate the reliability and validity of the proposed approach, a three-dimensional full body musculoskeletal model with a flexible tibia was used as a demonstration example. The model was used in a forward dynamics simulation in order to predict the tibial strains during walking on a level exercise. The flexible tibial model was developed using the actual geometry of human tibia, which was obtained from three-dimensional reconstruction of MRI. Motion capture data obtained from walking at constant velocity were used to drive the model during the inverse dynamics simulation in order to teach the muscles to reproduce the motion in the forward dynamics simulation. Based on the agreement between the literature-based in vivo strain measurements and the simulated strain results, it can be concluded that the flexible multibody approach enables reasonable predictions of bone strain in response to dynamic loading. The information obtained from the present approach can be useful in clinical applications including devising exercises to prevent bone fragility or to accelerate fracture healing.

  17. Utilising caging techniques to investigate metal assimilation in Nucella lapillus, Mytilus edulis and Crassostrea gigas at three Irish coastal locations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giltrap, Michelle; Macken, Ailbhe; Davoren, Maria; McGovern, Evin; Foley, Barry; Larsen, Martin; White, Jonathan; McHugh, Brendan

    2013-11-01

    Pollution by metals has been of increasing concern for a number of decades but at present, the mechanism of metal accumulation in sentinel species is not fully understood and further studies are required for environmental risk assessment of metals in aquatic environments. The use of caging techniques has proven to be useful for assessment of water quality in coastal and estuarine environments. This study investigates the application of caging techniques for monitoring uptake of 20 elements [Li, Na, Mg, Al, P, K, Ca, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Co, Cu, As, Sb, Pb, Hg, Cd and Zn] in three marine species namely Nucella lapillus, Mytilus edulis and Crassostrea gigas. Stable isotopes were used to determine predatory effects and also used for modelling metal uptake in test species and to track nutrient assimilation. Metal levels were monitored at three different coastal locations, namely Dublin Bay, Dunmore East and Omey Island over 18 weeks. Significant differences in concentrations of Mn, Co and Zn between mussels and oysters were found. Correlations between cadmium levels in N. lapillus and δ13C and δ15N suggest dietary influences in Cd uptake. Levels of Zn were highest in C. gigas compared to the other two species and levels of Zn were most elevated at the Dunmore East site. Copper levels were more elevated in all test species at both Dublin Bay and Dunmore East. Mercury was raised in all species at Dunmore East compared to the other two sites. Biotic accumulation of metals in the test species demonstrates that caging techniques can provide a valid tool for biomonitoring in metal impacted areas.

  18. An evaluation of extraction techniques for arsenic in staple diets (fish and rice) utilising both classical and enzymatic extraction methods.

    PubMed

    Sadee, Bashdar A; Foulkes, Mike E; Hill, Steve J

    2016-01-01

    Enzymatic extraction methods were evaluated with classical extraction approaches for the determination of arsenic in food. The extraction efficiency for total arsenic was determined by analysing CRM materials DORM-3 fish protein, NIES 106 rice flour and GBW10015 spinach. These were compared with total arsenic concentration determined using microwave-assisted acid digestion and ICP-MS. The total arsenic concentrations in the CRM materials were in good agreement with the certified values. Enzymatic hydrolysis using trypsin has been successfully employed to extract arsenic species in DORM-3 and fish samples. Whilst this method of hydrolysing the proteins worked well for the fish samples, an alternative approach was required to facilitate the digestion of cellulose in plant materials. However, enzymatic extraction using cellulase was found to give unsatisfactory results for both the NIES and GBW10015 CRM materials. Dilute nitric acid (1% HNO3) was found to give a more efficient extraction for arsenic species in the same CRM materials and rice samples. The study was extended to evaluate a range of real samples. Total arsenic concentrations in 13 different types of fish tissue were determined following microwave-assisted acid digestion using nitric acid/hydrogen peroxide, followed by measurement using HPLC-ICP-MS for speciation analysis. The results obtained for fish were in the range of 3.53-98.80 µg g(-1) As (dry weight). Similarly, the results of 17 rice samples were in the range of 0.054-0.823 µg g(-1). This study demonstrates the importance of selecting an appropriate extraction technique for the quantitative measurement of arsenic species in food.

  19. Biodegradation of free cyanide and subsequent utilisation of biodegradation by-products by Bacillus consortia: optimisation using response surface methodology.

    PubMed

    Mekuto, Lukhanyo; Ntwampe, Seteno Karabo Obed; Jackson, Vanessa Angela

    2015-07-01

    A mesophilic alkali-tolerant bacterial consortium belonging to the Bacillus genus was evaluated for its ability to biodegrade high free cyanide (CN(-)) concentration (up to 500 mg CN(-)/L), subsequent to the oxidation of the formed ammonium and nitrates in a continuous bioreactor system solely supplemented with whey waste. Furthermore, an optimisation study for successful cyanide biodegradation by this consortium was evaluated in batch bioreactors (BBs) using response surface methodology (RSM). The input variables, that is, pH, temperature and whey-waste concentration, were optimised using a numerical optimisation technique where the optimum conditions were found to be as follows: pH 9.88, temperature 33.60 °C and whey-waste concentration of 14.27 g/L, under which 206.53 mg CN(-)/L in 96 h can be biodegraded by the microbial species from an initial cyanide concentration of 500 mg CN(-)/L. Furthermore, using the optimised data, cyanide biodegradation in a continuous mode was evaluated in a dual-stage packed-bed bioreactor (PBB) connected in series to a pneumatic bioreactor system (PBS) used for simultaneous nitrification, including aerobic denitrification. The whey-supported Bacillus sp. culture was not inhibited by the free cyanide concentration of up to 500 mg CN(-)/L, with an overall degradation efficiency of ≥ 99 % with subsequent nitrification and aerobic denitrification of the formed ammonium and nitrates over a period of 80 days. This is the first study to report free cyanide biodegradation at concentrations of up to 500 mg CN(-)/L in a continuous system using whey waste as a microbial feedstock. The results showed that the process has the potential for the bioremediation of cyanide-containing wastewaters.

  20. Physicians, Primary Caregivers and Topical Repellent: All Under-Utilised Resources in Stopping Dengue Virus Transmission in Affected Households

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, Nguyet Minh; Whitehorn, James S.; Luong Thi Hue, Tai; Nguyen Thanh, Truong; Mai Xuan, Thong; Vo Xuan, Huy; Nguyen Thi Cam, Huong; Nguyen Thi Hong, Lan; Nguyen, Hoa L.; Dong Thi Hoai, Tam; Nguyen Van Vinh, Chau; Wolbers, Marcel; Wills, Bridget; Simmons, Cameron P.; Carrington, Lauren B.

    2016-01-01

    Background Primary health care facilities frequently manage dengue cases on an ambulatory basis for the duration of the patient’s illness. There is a great opportunity for specific messaging, aimed to reduce dengue virus (DENV) transmission in and around the home, to be directly targeted toward this high-risk ambulatory patient group, as part of an integrated approach to dengue management. The extent however, to which physicians understand, and can themselves effectively communicate strategies to stop focal DENV transmission around an ambulatory dengue case is unknown; the matter of patient comprehension and recollection then ensues. In addition, the effectiveness of N,N-diethyl-3-methylbenzamide (DEET)-based insect repellent in protecting dengue patients from Aedes aegypti mosquitoes’ bites has not been investigated. Methodology A knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) survey, focusing on the mechanisms of DENV transmission and prevention, was performed using semi-structured questionnaires. This survey was targeted towards the patients and family members providing supportive care, and physicians routinely involved in dengue patient management in Southern Vietnam. An additional clinical observational study was conducted to measure the efficacy of a widely-used 13% DEET-based insect repellent to repel Ae. aegypti mosquitoes from the forearms of dengue cases and matched healthy controls. Principal Findings Among both the physician (n = 50) and patient (n = 49) groups there were several respondents lacking a coherent understanding of DENV transmission, leading to some inappropriate attitudes and inadequate acute preventive practices in the household. The application of insect repellent to protect patients and their relatives from mosquito bites was frequently recommended by majority of physicians (78%) participating in the survey. Nevertheless, our tested topical application of 13% DEET conferred only ~1hr median protection time from Ae. aegypti landing. This is

  1. Dynamics of a flexible tethered satellite system utilising various materials for coplanar and non-coplanar models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Aaron Aw Teik; Varatharajoo, Renuganth

    2015-08-01

    This paper discusses the development of mathematical models for a flexible tethered satellite system (TSS) in both planar and co-planar states. The flexible tethered satellite system consists of three rigid bodies with two flexible tethers, each connecting two rigid bodies with one located in the centre and serving as the mothership. The TSS motion includes tether deformations, rotational dynamics, and orbital mechanics. The three materials that are possible to be used for a space tether are tungsten wire, Spectra-2000, and diamond; it should be noted that the diamond used here is in a form of a nanotube thread. The tether will undergo a spinning motion as well in the motorised option. In addition, the air drag perturbation is also considered since the entire TSS is flown around the Low Earth Orbit (LEO), where the air-drag perturbation is dominant. A survival analysis was then performed for planar and non-coplanar models in order to establish a dynamic performance envelope with respect to the tether's tension at different altitudes under the air-drag perturbation. The proposed models were treated numerically and analysed accordingly. Then a comparison study between the coplanar and non-coplanar models were conducted and the difference in their performances was observed and discussed. Although all materials have their own safe operation boundaries, the flexible TSS using tungsten shows a better dynamic performance than the other TSS options in a non-coplanar model.

  2. An ecological approach to seeking and utilising the views of young people with intellectual disabilities in transition planning.

    PubMed

    Small, Neil; Raghavan, Raghu; Pawson, Nicole

    2013-12-01

    Transition planning using a person-centred approach has, in the main, failed to shape service provision. We offer an alternative based on an ecological understanding of human development linked to public health approaches that prioritise whole system planning. A total of 43 young people with intellectual disabilities, in Bradford, England, who were approaching transition from school or college were recruited to a qualitative study. Their ethnic breakdown was as follows: 16 white British, 24 Pakistani, 2 Bangladeshi and 1 Black African. Each young person was interviewed twice, at recruitment and a year later, to observe any changes in their social networks during transition. Interviews were undertaken with a semi-structured interview schedule and with the pictorial approach of Talking Mats. Both the networks the young people live within, and their sense of what the future might hold for them, are described and linked to Bronfenbrenner's ecological model of human development. The importance of the family and school is emphasised, as is the absence of engagement in leisure activities and work. Transition planning needs to start with mapping the systems individuals live within, areas of strength should be supported and parts of the system, which are not fit for purpose for these young people, should be prioritised for interventions.

  3. Authentication of true cinnamon (Cinnamon verum) utilising direct analysis in real time (DART)-QToF-MS.

    PubMed

    Avula, Bharathi; Smillie, Troy J; Wang, Yan-Hong; Zweigenbaum, Jerry; Khan, Ikhlas A

    2015-01-01

    The use of cinnamon as a spice and flavouring agent is widespread throughout the world. Many different species of plants are commonly referred to as 'cinnamon'. 'True cinnamon' refers to the dried inner bark of Cinnamomum verum J. S. Presl (syn. C. zeylanicum) (Lauraceae). Other 'cinnamon' species, C. cassia (Nees & T. Nees) J. Presl (syn. C. aromaticum Nees) (Chinese cassia), C. loureiroi Nees (Saigon cassia), and C. burmannii (Nees & T. Nees) Blume (Indonesian cassia), commonly known as cassia, are also marketed as cinnamon. Since there is a prevalence of these various types of 'cinnamons' on the market, there is a need to develop a rapid technique that can readily differentiate between true cinnamon (C. verum) and other commonly marketed species. In the present study, coumarin and other marker compounds indicative of 'cinnamon' were analysed using DART-QToF-MS in various samples of cinnamon. This method involved the use of [M + H](+) ions in positive mode in addition to principal component analysis (PCA) using Mass Profiler Professional software to visualise several samples for quality and to discriminate 'true cinnamon' from other Cinnamomum species using the accurate mass capabilities of QToF-MS.

  4. Moonlighting of Helicobacter pylori catalase protects against complement-mediated killing by utilising the host molecule vitronectin

    PubMed Central

    Richter, Corinna; Mukherjee, Oindrilla; Ermert, David; Singh, Birendra; Su, Yu-Ching; Agarwal, Vaibhav; Blom, Anna M.; Riesbeck, Kristian

    2016-01-01

    Helicobacter pylori is an important human pathogen and a common cause of peptic ulcers and gastric cancer. Despite H. pylori provoking strong innate and adaptive immune responses, the bacterium is able to successfully establish long-term infections. Vitronectin (Vn), a component of both the extracellular matrix and plasma, is involved in many physiological processes, including regulation of the complement system. The aim of this study was to define a receptor in H. pylori that binds Vn and determine the significance of the interaction for virulence. Surprisingly, by using proteomics, we found that the hydrogen peroxide-neutralizing enzyme catalase KatA is a major Vn-binding protein. Deletion of the katA gene in three different strains resulted in impaired binding of Vn. Recombinant KatA was generated and shown to bind with high affinity to a region between heparin-binding domain 2 and 3 of Vn that differs from previously characterised bacterial binding sites on the molecule. In terms of function, KatA protected H. pylori from complement-mediated killing in a Vn-dependent manner. Taken together, the virulence factor KatA is a Vn-binding protein that moonlights on the surface of H. pylori to promote bacterial evasion of host innate immunity. PMID:27087644

  5. Microbiological and Chemical Evaluation of Helix Spp. Snails from Local and Non-EU Markets, Utilised as Food in Sardinia

    PubMed Central

    Corda, Arianna; Mara, Laura; Virgilio, Sebastiano; Pisanu, Margherita; Chessa, Giannina; Parisi, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    With this study, 28 pools of snails of the genus Helix, respectively Helix aspersa (n=24) and Helix vermiculata (n=4) were analysed. They were taken from snail farming and stores. The snails were from Sardinia, other regions of Italy, and from abroad. All the samples were examined as pool looking for these microbiological target: Salmonella spp., Listeria monocytogenes, Escherichia coli O157, Clostridium perfringens, Norovirus and Hepatitis A Virus (HAV). In the same pools, the concentration of cadmium and lead by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry was also determined. The levels of these heavy metals were quite high, especially for cadmium. Two samples were positive for Salmonella spp., while no sample was positive for Escherichia coli O157, HAV and Norovirus. Two samples were positive for Clostridium perfringens and 8 for Listeria monocytogenes. The microrganisms related to Listeria monocytogenes were identified using biochemical techniques, then serotyped and gene sequenced by multiple loci sequence typing technique. Furthermore, antimicrobial restistence was tested on the same samples. PMID:27800346

  6. Landscape Management of Fire and Grazing Regimes Alters the Fine-Scale Habitat Utilisation by Feral Cats

    PubMed Central

    McGregor, Hugh W.; Legge, Sarah; Jones, Menna E.; Johnson, Christopher N.

    2014-01-01

    Intensification of fires and grazing by large herbivores has caused population declines in small vertebrates in many ecosystems worldwide. Impacts are rarely direct, and usually appear driven via indirect pathways, such as changes to predator-prey dynamics. Fire events and grazing may improve habitat and/or hunting success for the predators of small mammals, however, such impacts have not been documented. To test for such an interaction, we investigated fine-scale habitat selection by feral cats in relation to fire, grazing and small-mammal abundance. Our study was conducted in north-western Australia, where small mammal populations are sensitive to changes in fire and grazing management. We deployed GPS collars on 32 cats in landscapes with contrasting fire and grazing treatments. Fine-scale habitat selection was determined using discrete choice modelling of cat movements. We found that cats selected areas with open grass cover, including heavily-grazed areas. They strongly selected for areas recently burnt by intense fires, but only in habitats that typically support high abundance of small mammals. Intense fires and grazing by introduced herbivores created conditions that are favoured by cats, probably because their hunting success is improved. This mechanism could explain why, in northern Australia, impacts of feral cats on small mammals might have increased. Our results suggest the impact of feral cats could be reduced in most ecosystems by maximising grass cover, minimising the incidence of intense fires, and reducing grazing by large herbivores. PMID:25329902

  7. Optimising Process Efficiency During Remote Laser Cutting of CFRP by Utilisation of a Double-scan-head

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dittmar, Hagen; Herda, Patrick; Jäschke, Peter; Suttmann, Oliver; Overmeyer, Ludger

    A double-scan-head was developed combining two pairs of galvo-mirrors into one device. One pair controls the laser beam's position, while the other in this setup is used for a pyrometer. Thus, a pyrometer's optical path can be controlled independently from a laser's path as well as being locked to the same geometrical path during CFRP processing. Using such a double-scan-head, a comparison between locked pyrometry and independent scanning pyrometry is performed during multi-pass laser cutting on multiple geometries. Carbon fibre reinforced epoxy and PPS are cut with pre-selected threshold surface temperatures ranging from T = 80-120 °C to interrupt and optimise the process in order to reduce the material's thermal strain. Both locked and scanning pyrometry are compared based on total processing time, heat affected zone, and the influence of fibre orientation. The study shows a double-scan-head allows improved process monitoring strategies leading towards more efficient laser material processing in terms of quality and time.

  8. Forces and shapes as determinants of micro-swimming: effect on synchronisation and the utilisation of drag.

    PubMed

    Pande, Jayant; Smith, Ana-Sunčana

    2015-03-28

    In this analytical study we demonstrate the richness of behaviour exhibited by bead-spring micro-swimmers, both in terms of known yet not fully explained effects such as synchronisation, and hitherto undiscovered phenomena such as the existence of two transport regimes where the swimmer shape has fundamentally different effects on the velocity. For this purpose we employ a micro-swimmer model composed of three arbitrarily-shaped rigid beads connected linearly by two springs. By analysing this swimmer in terms of the forces on the different beads, we determine the optimal kinematic parameters for sinusoidal driving, and also explain the pusher/puller nature of the swimmer. Moreover, we show that the phase difference between the swimmer's arms automatically attains values which maximise the swimming speed for a large region of the parameter space. Apart from this, we determine precisely the optimal bead shapes that maximise the velocity when the beads are constrained to be ellipsoids of a constant volume or surface area. On doing so, we discover the surprising existence of the aforementioned transport regimes in micro-swimming, where the motion is dominated by either a reduction of the drag force opposing the beads, or by the hydrodynamic interaction amongst them. Under some conditions, these regimes lead to counter-intuitive effects such as the most streamlined shapes forming locally the slowest swimmers.

  9. Developmental Programming of Cardiovascular Disease Following Intrauterine Growth Restriction: Findings Utilising A Rat Model of Maternal Protein Restriction

    PubMed Central

    Zohdi, Vladislava; Lim, Kyungjoon; Pearson, James T.; Black, M. Jane

    2014-01-01

    Over recent years, studies have demonstrated links between risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood and adverse events that occurred very early in life during fetal development. The concept that there are embryonic and fetal adaptive responses to a sub-optimal intrauterine environment often brought about by poor maternal diet that result in permanent adverse consequences to life-long health is consistent with the definition of “programming”. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the current knowledge of the effects of intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) on long-term cardiac structure and function, with particular emphasis on the effects of maternal protein restriction. Much of our recent knowledge has been derived from animal models. We review the current literature of one of the most commonly used models of IUGR (maternal protein restriction in rats), in relation to birth weight and postnatal growth, blood pressure and cardiac structure and function. In doing so, we highlight the complexity of developmental programming, with regards to timing, degree of severity of the insult, genotype and the subsequent postnatal phenotype. PMID:25551250

  10. Developmental programming of cardiovascular disease following intrauterine growth restriction: findings utilising a rat model of maternal protein restriction.

    PubMed

    Zohdi, Vladislava; Lim, Kyungjoon; Pearson, James T; Black, M Jane

    2015-01-01

    Over recent years, studies have demonstrated links between risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood and adverse events that occurred very early in life during fetal development. The concept that there are embryonic and fetal adaptive responses to a sub-optimal intrauterine environment often brought about by poor maternal diet that result in permanent adverse consequences to life-long health is consistent with the definition of "programming". The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the current knowledge of the effects of intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) on long-term cardiac structure and function, with particular emphasis on the effects of maternal protein restriction. Much of our recent knowledge has been derived from animal models. We review the current literature of one of the most commonly used models of IUGR (maternal protein restriction in rats), in relation to birth weight and postnatal growth, blood pressure and cardiac structure and function. In doing so, we highlight the complexity of developmental programming, with regards to timing, degree of severity of the insult, genotype and the subsequent postnatal phenotype.

  11. Utilisation of combined 18F-FDG PET/CT scan for differential diagnosis between benign and malignant adrenal enlargement

    PubMed Central

    Lee, H J; Cho, S H; Won, K S

    2013-01-01

    Objective: To assess the properties of adrenal lesions with and without known primary cancer and investigate predictors for differential diagnosis between benign and malignant adrenal enlargement. Methods: This retrospective study used fluorine-18 fludeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (PET)/CT in 325 patients with adrenal lesions (229 with known primary cancer and 96 without primary cancer). Age, sex, the presence of right and left masses, nodules or hyperplasia, unenhanced attenuation, maximum standardised uptake value (SUVmax) ratio, and the presence of metastasis in other body parts and locations of the primary cancer were assessed. Univariate and multivariate analyses were used to assess variables associated with risk of adrenal metastasis. Results: Patients with adrenal metastasis vs those without had a higher frequency of primary lung cancer (52.3% vs 30.7%) but a lower frequency of gastrointestinal cancer (7.9% vs 16.6%). The frequency of other abnormalities, including adenoma and hyperplasia, was similar between patients with and without known primary cancer. A higher proportion of patients with adrenal metastasis regardless of primary cancer site were younger, had a nodule or a mass, had an unenhanced attenuation of >10 HU, had an SUVmax ratio of >2.5, and had metastasis in other body parts. Analysis found independent associations of age, unenhanced attenuation of >10 HU, SUVmax ratio of >2.5 and the presence of metastasis in other body parts with adrenal metastasis. The combination of the four variables was strongly associated with adrenal metastasis. Conclusion: PET/CT was useful in characterising adrenal lesions as benign or malignant and helpful in identifying adrenal metastasis and cancer severity. Advances in knowledge: PET/CT can help in the differential diagnosis between benign and malignant adrenal enlargement. PMID:23833032

  12. Home range utilisation and long-range movement of estuarine crocodiles during the breeding and nesting season.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Hamish A; Dwyer, Ross G; Irwin, Terri R; Franklin, Craig E

    2013-01-01

    The estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) is the apex-predator in waterways and coastlines throughout south-east Asia and Australasia. C. porosus pose a potential risk to humans, and management strategies are implemented to control their movement and distribution. Here we used GPS-based telemetry to accurately record geographical location of adult C. porosus during the breeding and nesting season. The purpose of the study was to assess how C. porosus movement and distribution may be influenced by localised social conditions. During breeding, the females (2.92 ± 0.013 metres total length (TL), mean ± S.E., n = 4) occupied an area<1 km length of river, but to nest they travelled up to 54 km away from the breeding area. All tagged male C. porosus sustained high rates of movement (6.49 ± 0.9 km d(-1); n = 8) during the breeding and nesting period. The orientation of the daily movements differed between individuals revealing two discontinuous behavioural strategies. Five tagged male C. porosus (4.17 ± 0.14 m TL) exhibited a 'site-fidelic' strategy and moved within well-defined zones around the female home range areas. In contrast, three males (3.81 ± 0.08 m TL) exhibited 'nomadic' behaviour where they travelled continually throughout hundreds of kilometres of waterway. We argue that the 'site-fidelic' males patrolled territories around the female home ranges to maximise reproductive success, whilst the 'nomadic' males were subordinate animals that were forced to range over a far greater area in search of unguarded females. We conclude that C. porosus are highly mobile animals existing within a complex social system, and mate/con-specific interactions are likely to have a profound effect upon population density and distribution, and an individual's travel potential. We recommend that impacts on socio-spatial behaviour are considered prior to the implementation of management interventions.

  13. Public's knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists: a critical issue in eye care service utilisation

    PubMed Central

    Eze, Boniface Ikenna; Okoye, Obiekwe; Aguwa, Emmanuel Nwabueze

    2016-01-01

    AIM To assess the public's knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists and identify the factors associated with knowledge. METHODS The study was a population-based random survey of adults aged 18 years or older conducted in Enugu, south eastern Nigeria, between March and June, 2011. Data on respondents' socio-demographics, clinical profile, and knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists were collected using a 28-item questionnaire. Data were analysed using descriptive and analytical statistics. Values of P<0.05 were considered statistically significant. RESULTS The respondents (n=394) comprised 198 males and 196 females (sex ratio=1.01:1), aged 18-70 (30.9±10.8) years. The majority of respondents were single (57.4%), possessed secondary education (96.9%), employed (65.2%) and had no health insurance (77.4%). Their clinical profile showed previous eye exam 54.1%, spectacle wear 41.6% and contact lens wear 5.6%. In the multivariate analysis, participants' good knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists was significantly associated with educational status (OR: 0.32, 95% CI: 0.23-0.44, P<0.0001, β=-0.988), employment status (OR: 1.8, 95% CI: 1.45-2.25, P<0.0001, β=0.124) and previous eye examination (OR: 1.63, 95% CI: 1.29-2.07, P<0.0001, β=0.549). CONCLUSION Participants' socio-demographic and clinical characteristics are important predictors of good knowledge. The findings may have implications for all stakeholders in eye care delivery. There is need for knowledge enhancement, by the government and eye care providers, through population-based eye health literacy campaigns. PMID:27672602

  14. Quantification of malachite green in fish feed utilising liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry with a monolithic column.

    PubMed

    Abro, Kamran; Mahesar, Sarfaraz Ahmed; Iqbal, Seema; Perveen, Shahnaz

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop a rapid and sensitive method for the quantification of malachite green (MG) in fish feed using LC-ESI-MS/MS with a monolithic column as stationary phase. Fish feed was cleaned using ultrasonic assisted liquid-liquid extraction. The separation was achieved on a Chromolith® Performance RP-18e column (100 × 4.6 mm) using gradient mobile phase composition of methanol and 0.1% formic acid at the flow rate of 1.0 ml min⁻¹. The analyte was ionised using electrospray ionisation in positive mode. Mass spectral transitions were recorded in selected reaction monitoring (SRM) mode at m/z 329.78 → m/z 314.75 with a collision energy (CE) of 52% for MG. The system suitability responses were calculated for reproducibility tests of the retention time, number of theoretical plates and capacity factor. System validation was evaluated for precision, specificity and linearity of MG. The linearity and calibration graph was plotted in the range of 15.0-250 ng ml⁻¹ with the regression coefficient of >0.997. The lower limits of detection and quantification for MG were 0.55 and 1.44 ng ml⁻¹, respectively, allowing easy determination in fish feed with accuracy evaluated as a percentage recovery of 92.1% and precision determined as % CV of < 5. The method was also extended to the determination of MG in an actual fish feed. The sensitivity and selectivity of LC-ESI-MS/MS using monolithic column offers a valuable alternative to the methodologies currently employed for the quantification of MG in fish feeds.

  15. Public's knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists: a critical issue in eye care service utilisation

    PubMed Central

    Eze, Boniface Ikenna; Okoye, Obiekwe; Aguwa, Emmanuel Nwabueze

    2016-01-01

    AIM To assess the public's knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists and identify the factors associated with knowledge. METHODS The study was a population-based random survey of adults aged 18 years or older conducted in Enugu, south eastern Nigeria, between March and June, 2011. Data on respondents' socio-demographics, clinical profile, and knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists were collected using a 28-item questionnaire. Data were analysed using descriptive and analytical statistics. Values of P<0.05 were considered statistically significant. RESULTS The respondents (n=394) comprised 198 males and 196 females (sex ratio=1.01:1), aged 18-70 (30.9±10.8) years. The majority of respondents were single (57.4%), possessed secondary education (96.9%), employed (65.2%) and had no health insurance (77.4%). Their clinical profile showed previous eye exam 54.1%, spectacle wear 41.6% and contact lens wear 5.6%. In the multivariate analysis, participants' good knowledge of the differences between ophthalmologists and optometrists was significantly associated with educational status (OR: 0.32, 95% CI: 0.23-0.44, P<0.0001, β=-0.988), employment status (OR: 1.8, 95% CI: 1.45-2.25, P<0.0001, β=0.124) and previous eye examination (OR: 1.63, 95% CI: 1.29-2.07, P<0.0001, β=0.549). CONCLUSION Participants' socio-demographic and clinical characteristics are important predictors of good knowledge. The findings may have implications for all stakeholders in eye care delivery. There is need for knowledge enhancement, by the government and eye care providers, through population-based eye health literacy campaigns.

  16. Utilising conservative tracers and spatial surveys to identify controls on pathways and DOC exports in an Arctic catchment.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lessels, J. S.; Tetzlaff, D.; Dinsmore, K. J.; Street, L. E.; Dean, J.; Washbourne, I. J.; Billett, M. F.; Baxter, R.; Subke, J. A.; Wookey, P. A.

    2014-12-01

    Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is typically the predominant form of carbon exported from headwater streams, it therefore represents a major carbon export from Arctic catchments. The projected deepening of thaw depth in permafrost regions, due to an increase in air temperature, may have a significant effect on the amount of DOC exported from these systems. However, quantification of the impacts of climate driven changes on DOC export are still highly uncertain. Understanding the processes controlling DOC export is therefore crucial in predicting the potential impact of projected environmental changes. The controls of DOC production and transport are heavily influenced by soil and vegetation, which are highly variable across the landscape. To completely understand these systems information regarding spatial variability of plants, soils and thaw depths must be taken into account. In this study sub-weekly sampling of DOC was undertaken throughout 2014 in a headwater (<1 km2) catchment in the Northwest Territories, Canada. Spatial surveys of soil properties, active thaw depth and normalised difference vegetation index (NDVI) were collected and used in conjunction with conservative stable water isotopes tracers and major ions to understand sources, flow pathways and timing of DOC exports from the catchment. Stable isotope tracers act as fingerprints of water allowing sources and pathways to be assessed. Observations reveal changing DOC concentrations throughout the season as the active layer deepens and the connectivity of the soils to the stream network throughout the catchment increases. Linking the DOC data with the conservative tracer response improves the identification of carbon pathways and fluxes from the soils; preliminary analysis indicates DOC is being delivered via deeper more mineral soils later in the season. The results indicate that the active layer depth has a strong influence on the amount of DOC exported from the system, independent of the amount of

  17. Ecological Thresholds in the Savanna Landscape: Developing a Protocol for Monitoring the Change in Composition and Utilisation of Large Trees

    PubMed Central

    Druce, Dave J.; Shannon, Graeme; Page, Bruce R.; Grant, Rina; Slotow, Rob

    2008-01-01

    Background Acquiring greater understanding of the factors causing changes in vegetation structure - particularly with the potential to cause regime shifts - is important in adaptively managed conservation areas. Large trees (≥5 m in height) play an important ecosystem function, and are associated with a stable ecological state in the African savanna. There is concern that large tree densities are declining in a number of protected areas, including the Kruger National Park, South Africa. In this paper the results of a field study designed to monitor change in a savanna system are presented and discussed. Methodology/Principal Findings Developing the first phase of a monitoring protocol to measure the change in tree species composition, density and size distribution, whilst also identifying factors driving change. A central issue is the discrete spatial distribution of large trees in the landscape, making point sampling approaches relatively ineffective. Accordingly, fourteen 10 m wide transects were aligned perpendicular to large rivers (3.0–6.6 km in length) and eight transects were located at fixed-point photographic locations (1.0–1.6 km in length). Using accumulation curves, we established that the majority of tree species were sampled within 3 km. Furthermore, the key ecological drivers (e.g. fire, herbivory, drought and disease) which influence large tree use and impact were also recorded within 3 km. Conclusions/Significance The technique presented provides an effective method for monitoring changes in large tree abundance, size distribution and use by the main ecological drivers across the savanna landscape. However, the monitoring of rare tree species would require individual marking approaches due to their low densities and specific habitat requirements. Repeat sampling intervals would vary depending on the factor of concern and proposed management mitigation. Once a monitoring protocol has been identified and evaluated, the next stage is to

  18. Utilisation d'analyse de concepts formels pour la gestion de variabilite d'un logiciel configure dynamiquement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menguy, Theotime

    Because of its critical nature, avionic industry is bound with numerous constraints such as security standards and certifications while having to fulfill the clients' desires for personalization. In this context, variability management is a very important issue for re-engineering projects of avionic softwares. In this thesis, we propose a new approach, based on formal concept analysis and semantic web, to support variability management. The first goal of this research is to identify characteristic behaviors and interactions of configuration variables in a dynamically configured system. To identify such elements, we used formal concept analysis on different levels of abstractions in the system and defined new metrics. Then, we built a classification for the configuration variables and their relations in order to enable a quick identification of a variable's behavior in the system. This classification could help finding a systematic approach to process variables during a re-engineering operation, depending on their category. To have a better understanding of the system, we also studied the shared controls of code between configuration variables. A second objective of this research is to build a knowledge platform to gather the results of all the analysis performed, and to store any additional element relevant in the variability management context, for instance new results helping define re-engineering process for each of the categories. To address this goal, we built a solution based on a semantic web, defining a new ontology, very extensive and enabling to build inferences related to the evolution processes. The approach presented here is, to the best of our knowledge, the first classification of configuration variables of a dynamically configured software and an original use of documentation and variability management techniques using semantic web in the aeronautic field. The analysis performed and the final results show that formal concept analysis is a way to

  19. Utilisation of the GMES Sentinel satellites for off-shore platform oil spills and gas flaring monitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Erasmo, Daniele; Casadio, Stefano; Cardaci, Massimo; Del Frate, Fabio

    2013-04-01

    Oil spills and gas flaring are serious issues for ecosystem, economy and people working on the extraction sites. Oil spill is known. Gas Flaring is the disposal of poison waste gases generated in the oil extraction process. High volumes (every year gas flaring burns worldwide the equivalent of 25% of the overall gas burned in Europe), significantly contributing to the global carbon emission budget (0.5% of total, 2008). European and worldwide legislation pays an increasing attention to it. Our Sentinel1 and 3 SAR and SLSTR usage for this objective won the GMES Masters 2012 IDEAS Challenge. In this study, we use SAR and infrared/thermal (SLSTR) data to identify unexpected misbehaviours of oil platforms, like switch on of the flare and oil spill in the ocean. On one side, the detection and characterization of gas flaring is achieved by analysing the infrared/thermal radiances measured by the SLSTR instrument on-board SENTINEL-3. This technique has been developed and tested using the ENVISAT Along Track Scanning Radiometer (ATSR) dataset and proved to be adequate for long term monitoring of oil extraction for both off-shore and in-shore drilling stations. The spatial/temporal coverage provided by SENTINEL-3 will allow an unprecedented daily monitoring of the oil extraction platforms. On the other side, the detection of oil spills and ships can be performed using Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR). Both for oil spills and ships, many techniques have been published in the dedicated literature and validated to make the process of detection from SAR automatic. The extension of these techniques to the future SENTINEL-1 data is feasible. The service is mainly addressed to governments (in charge of controlling respect of the rules), civil protection authorities (to promote prevention of pollution damages), oil companies (that want to prove their respect of rules and attention to the environment), and ONGs (involved in the monitoring of the environment). The methodology applied

  20. Health Care Utilisation and Out-of-Pocket Expenditure Associated with Back Pain: A Nationally Representative Survey of Australian Women

    PubMed Central

    Kirby, Emma R.; Broom, Alex F.; Sibbritt, David W.; Refshauge, Kathryn M.; Adams, Jon

    2013-01-01

    Background Back pain impacts on a significant proportion of the Australian population over the life course and has high prevalence rates among women, particularly in older age. Back pain care is characterised by multiple practitioner and self-prescribed treatment options, and the out-of-pocket costs associated with consultations and self-prescribed treatments have not been examined to date. Objective To analyse the extent of health care practitioner consultations and self-prescribed treatment for back pain care among Australian women, and to assess the self-reported costs associated with such usage. Methods Survey of 1,310 women (response rate 80.9%) who reported seeking help for back pain from the ‘1946-51 cohort’ of the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health. Women were asked about their use of health care practitioners and self-prescribed treatments for back pain and the costs associated with such usage. Results In the past year 76.4% consulted a complementary and alternative practitioner, 56% an allied health practitioner and 59.2% a GP/medical specialist. Overall, women consulted with, on average, 3.0 (SD = 2.0) different health care practitioners, and had, on average, 12.2 (SD = 9.7) discrete health care practitioner consultations for back pain. Average self-reported out-of-pocket expenditure on practitioners and self-prescribed treatments for back pain care per annum was AU$873.10. Conclusions Multiple provider usage for various but distinct purposes (i.e. pain/mobility versus anxiety/stress) points to the need for further research into patient motivations and experiences of back pain care in order to improve and enhance access to and continuity of care. Our results suggest that the cost of back pain care represents a significant burden, and may ultimately limit women’s access to multiple providers. We extrapolate that for Australian working-age women, total out-of-pocket expenditure on back pain care per annum is in excess of AU$1

  1. Occupational asthma induced by tall oil in the rubber tyre industry.

    PubMed

    Tarlo, S M

    1992-01-01

    A worker in the rubber tyre industry is described with occupational asthma from exposure to a solution of tall oil, a pine resin, confirmed by specific inhalation challenge. This supports studies of contact dermatitis which have suggested abietic and dehydroabietic acid oxidants to be the cause of colophony induced allergic reactions. PMID:1551039

  2. Utilisation of young and old soil carbon sources by microbial groups differ during the growing season and between experimental treatments in a long-term field experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Börjesson, Gunnar; Menichetti, Lorenzo; Thornton, Barry; Campbell, Colin; Kätterer, Thomas

    2014-05-01

    Soil organic matter (SOM)is the largest active carbon pool in the terrestrial environment. SOM is a key factor for soil fertility, but is also important for the sequestration of atmospheric CO2. In agricultural soils, management of plant residues and the use of organic fertilisers play important roles for maintaining SOM. Switching from C3 plants to C4 plants such as maize, enables a natural labelling in situ; when coupled with compound specific 13C isotope analysis of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) it allows the proportion of new C (fixed after the switch added to soil from above- and belowground litter and root exudates) and the proportion of old C (fixed prior to the switch derived from turnover of organic matter) utilised by the soil microbial community to be determined. (new paragraph) A field experiment in Sweden, amended with different mineral and organic fertilisers since 1956, was grown with C3 plants, mainly cereals until 1999. From the year 2000 silage maize was grown every year. In 2012, soil from four replicate plots of five experimental treatments, N fertilised, N fertilised amended with straw and sewage sludge, and two controls (bare fallow and cropped unfertilised) were sampled three times, at the start, middle and end of the growing season. Phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) were extracted from all soil samples and analysed for concentrations and 13C content. (new paragraph) Total PLFA concentrations and also the PLFA/SOM ratios increased with SOM in the different treatments. Seasonal variation in total PLFA was small except for the most SOM-rich treatment (sewage sludge) where concentrations significantly decreased during the growing season indicating the depletion of a labile SOM pool. Weighted mean values of δ13C in PLFAs show that the plots fertilised with only calcium nitrate had the highest δ13C-values in PLFAs before (-20.24 o) and after the vegetation period (-20.37 o), due to a large input of 13C-enriched plant material. However, during

  3. Mode of oral iron administration and the amount of iron habitually consumed do not affect iron absorption, systemic iron utilisation or zinc absorption in iron-sufficient infants: a randomised trial.

    PubMed

    Szymlek-Gay, Ewa A; Domellöf, Magnus; Hernell, Olle; Hurrell, Richard F; Lind, Torbjörn; Lönnerdal, Bo; Zeder, Christophe; Egli, Ines M

    2016-09-01

    Different metabolic pathways of supplemental and fortification Fe, or inhibition of Zn absorption by Fe, may explain adverse effects of supplemental Fe in Fe-sufficient infants. We determined whether the mode of oral Fe administration or the amount habitually consumed affects Fe absorption and systemic Fe utilisation in infants, and assessed the effects of these interventions on Zn absorption, Fe and Zn status, and growth. Fe-sufficient 6-month-old infants (n 72) were randomly assigned to receive 6·6 mg Fe/d from a high-Fe formula, 1·3 mg Fe/d from a low-Fe formula or 6·6 mg Fe/d from Fe drops and a formula with no added Fe for 45 d. Fractional Fe absorption, Fe utilisation and fractional Zn absorption were measured with oral (57Fe and 67Zn) and intravenous (58Fe and 70Zn) isotopes. Fe and Zn status, infection and growth were measured. At 45 d, Hb was 6·3 g/l higher in the high-Fe formula group compared with the Fe drops group, whereas serum ferritin was 34 and 35 % higher, respectively, and serum transferrin 0·1 g/l lower in the high-Fe formula and Fe drops groups compared with the low-Fe formula group (all P<0·05). No intervention effects were observed on Fe absorption, Fe utilisation, Zn absorption, other Fe status indices, plasma Zn or growth. We concluded that neither supplemental or fortification Fe nor the amount of Fe habitually consumed altered Fe absorption, Fe utilisation, Zn absorption, Zn status or growth in Fe-sufficient infants. Consumption of low-Fe formula as the only source of Fe was insufficient to maintain Fe stores.

  4. Mode of oral iron administration and the amount of iron habitually consumed do not affect iron absorption, systemic iron utilisation or zinc absorption in iron-sufficient infants: a randomised trial.

    PubMed

    Szymlek-Gay, Ewa A; Domellöf, Magnus; Hernell, Olle; Hurrell, Richard F; Lind, Torbjörn; Lönnerdal, Bo; Zeder, Christophe; Egli, Ines M

    2016-09-01

    Different metabolic pathways of supplemental and fortification Fe, or inhibition of Zn absorption by Fe, may explain adverse effects of supplemental Fe in Fe-sufficient infants. We determined whether the mode of oral Fe administration or the amount habitually consumed affects Fe absorption and systemic Fe utilisation in infants, and assessed the effects of these interventions on Zn absorption, Fe and Zn status, and growth. Fe-sufficient 6-month-old infants (n 72) were randomly assigned to receive 6·6 mg Fe/d from a high-Fe formula, 1·3 mg Fe/d from a low-Fe formula or 6·6 mg Fe/d from Fe drops and a formula with no added Fe for 45 d. Fractional Fe absorption, Fe utilisation and fractional Zn absorption were measured with oral (57Fe and 67Zn) and intravenous (58Fe and 70Zn) isotopes. Fe and Zn status, infection and growth were measured. At 45 d, Hb was 6·3 g/l higher in the high-Fe formula group compared with the Fe drops group, whereas serum ferritin was 34 and 35 % higher, respectively, and serum transferrin 0·1 g/l lower in the high-Fe formula and Fe drops groups compared with the low-Fe formula group (all P<0·05). No intervention effects were observed on Fe absorption, Fe utilisation, Zn absorption, other Fe status indices, plasma Zn or growth. We concluded that neither supplemental or fortification Fe nor the amount of Fe habitually consumed altered Fe absorption, Fe utilisation, Zn absorption, Zn status or growth in Fe-sufficient infants. Consumption of low-Fe formula as the only source of Fe was insufficient to maintain Fe stores. PMID:27546308

  5. Impact of the dual defence system of Plantago lanceolata (Plantaginaceae) on performance, nutrient utilisation and feeding choice behaviour of Amata mogadorensis larvae (Lepidoptera, Erebidae).

    PubMed

    Pankoke, Helga; Gehring, René; Müller, Caroline

    2015-11-01

    Iridoid glycosides are plant defence compounds with potentially detrimental effects on non-adapted herbivores. Some plant species possess β-glucosidases that hydrolyse iridoid glycosides and thereby release protein-denaturing aglycones. To test the hypothesis that iridoid glycosides and plant β-glucosidases form a dual defence system, we used Plantago lanceolata and a polyphagous caterpillar species. To analyse the impact of leaf-age dependent differences in iridoid glycoside concentrations and β-glucosidase activities on insect performance, old or young leaves were freeze-dried and incorporated into artificial diets or were provided freshly to the larvae. We determined larval consumption rates and the amounts of assimilated nitrogen. Furthermore, we quantified β-glucosidase activities in artificial diets and fresh leaves and the amount of iridoid glycosides that larvae feeding on fresh leaves ingested and excreted. Compared to fresh leaves, caterpillars grew faster on artificial diets, on which larval weight gain correlated positively to the absorbed amount of nitrogen. When feeding fresh young leaves, larvae even lost weight and excreted only minute proportions of the ingested iridoid glycosides intact with the faeces, indicating that the hydrolysis of these compounds might have interfered with nitrogen assimilation and impaired larval growth. To disentangle physiological effects from deterrent effects of iridoid glycosides, we performed dual choice feeding assays. Young leaves, their methanolic extracts and pure catalpol reduced larval feeding in comparison to the respective controls, while aucubin had no effect on larval consumption. We conclude that the dual defence system of P. lanceolata consisting of iridoid glycosides and β-glucosidases interferes with the nutrient utilisation via the hydrolysis of iridoid glycosides and also mediates larval feeding behaviour in a concentration- and substance-specific manner. PMID:26306994

  6. Effect of dietary monensin inclusion on performance, nutrient utilisation, rumen volatile fatty acid concentration and blood status of West African dwarf bucks fed with basal diets of forages.

    PubMed

    Aderinboye, Ronke Yemisi; Onwuka, Chryss Friday Ijeoma; Arigbede, Oluwasanmi Moses; Oduguwa, Oluseyi Olutosin; Aina, Ayobami Bukola Joseph

    2012-06-01

    This experiment investigated the effect of dietary monensin on performance, nutrient utilisation, rumen volatile fatty acid and blood status in West African dwarf (WAD) goats fed with basal diets of forages. Four concentrate supplements were formulated to include 0 (MO), 15 (M15), 30 (M30) and 45 (M45) mg monensin/kg dry matter. Twenty-four WAD bucks (7.3 ± 1.20 kg initial body weight, aged 9-12 months) were randomly allotted to four experimental diets in a completely randomised design for 90 days, six animals per diet. Results indicated that animals fed M15, M30 and M45 diets had lower (P < 0.01) dry matter and water intake than those fed M0 diet. Crude protein and neutral detergent fibre intakes by the bucks followed similar trend. Animals on M15, M30 and M45 had better (P < 0.001) feed and protein efficiency ratio than those fed M0 diet. Rumen pH and total volatile fatty acid concentration were maintained (P > 0.05) while monensin decreased (P < 0.001) acetate/propionate ratio. Blood glucose increased (P < 0.001) from 59.1 mg/dl in animals on M0 diet to 67.8, 66.0 and 66.3 mg/dl in animals on M15, M30 and M45 diets. Overall, there were no variations among animals on M15, M30 and M45 diets. It is concluded that feeding monensin at 15 to 45 mg/kg DM of supplemental concentrate diets to West African dwarf bucks could be effective in improving feed and protein efficiency, manipulating the rumen for increased propionate production and increasing blood glucose levels.

  7. Effect of niacin supplementation on digestibility, nitrogen utilisation and milk and blood variables in lactating dairy cows fed a diet with a negative rumen nitrogen balance.

    PubMed

    Aschemann, Martina; Lebzien, Peter; Hüther, Liane; Döll, Susanne; Südekum, Karl-Heinz; Dänicke, Sven

    2012-06-01

    The aim of the present experiment was to determine if a niacin supplementation of 6 g/d to lactating dairy cow diets can compensate negative effects of a rumen nitrogen balance (RNB) deficit. A total of nine ruminally and duodenally fistulated lactating multiparous German Holstein cows were successively assigned to one of three diets consisting of 10 kg maize silage (dry matter [DM] basis) and 7 kg DM concentrate: Diet RNB- (n = 6) with energy and utilisable crude protein at the duodenum (uCP) according to the average requirement of the animals but with a negative RNB (-0.41 g N/MJ metabolisable energy [ME]); Diet RNB0 (n = 7) with energy, uCP and a RNB (0.08 g N/MJ ME) according to the average requirement of the animals and, finally, Diet NA (n = 5), which was the same diet as RNB-, but supplemented with 6 g niacin/d. Samples of milk were taken on two consecutive days, blood samples were taken on one day pre- and post-feeding and faeces and urine were collected completely over five consecutive days. The negative RNB reduced milk and blood urea content and apparent total tract digestibility of DM, organic matter (OM) and neutral detergent fibre (NDF). Also N excretion with urine, the total N excreted with urine and faeces and the N balance were reduced when the RNB was negative. Supplementation of niacin elevated plasma glucose concentration after feeding and the N balance increased. Supplementing the diet with a negative RNB with niacin led to a more efficient use of dietary N thereby avoiding the negative effects of the negative RNB on the digestibility of DM, OM and NDF. PMID:22724166

  8. A perspective of stepwise utilisation of Bayer red mud: Step two--Extracting and recovering Ti from Ti-enriched tailing with acid leaching and precipitate flotation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yanfang; Chai, Wencui; Han, Guihong; Wang, Wenjuan; Yang, Shuzhen; Liu, Jiongtian

    2016-04-15

    The extraction and recovery of Ti from Ti-enriched tailing with acid leaching and precipitate flotation, as one of the critical steps, was proposed for the stepwise utilization of red mud. The factors influencing acid leaching and precipitate flotation were examined by factorial design. The leaching thermodynamics, kinetics of Ti(4+), Al(3+) and Fe(3+), and the mechanism of selectively Fe(3+) removal using [Hbet][Tf2N] as precipitating reagent were discussed. The extracting of Ti(4+), Al(3+) and Fe(3+) in concentrated H2SO4 is controlled by diffusion reactions, depending mainly upon leaching time and temperature. The maximum extracting efficiency of Ti(4+) is approximately 92.3%, whereas Al(3+) and Fe(3+) leaching are respectively 75.8% and 84.2%. [Hbet][Tf2N], as a precipitating reagent, operates through a coordination mechanism in flotation. The pH value is the key factor influencing the flotation recovery of Ti(4+), whereas the dosage of precipitating reagent is that for Al(3+) recovery. The maximum flotation recovery of Ti(4+) is 92.7%, whereas the maximum Al(3+) recovery is 93.5%. The total recovery rate for extracting and recovering titanium is 85.5%. The liquor with Ti(4+) of 15.5g/L, Al(3+) of 30.4g/L and Fe(3+) of 0.48g/L was obtained for the following hydrolysis step in the integrated process for red mud utilisation. PMID:26799223

  9. Effect of niacin supplementation on digestibility, nitrogen utilisation and milk and blood variables in lactating dairy cows fed a diet with a negative rumen nitrogen balance.

    PubMed

    Aschemann, Martina; Lebzien, Peter; Hüther, Liane; Döll, Susanne; Südekum, Karl-Heinz; Dänicke, Sven

    2012-06-01

    The aim of the present experiment was to determine if a niacin supplementation of 6 g/d to lactating dairy cow diets can compensate negative effects of a rumen nitrogen balance (RNB) deficit. A total of nine ruminally and duodenally fistulated lactating multiparous German Holstein cows were successively assigned to one of three diets consisting of 10 kg maize silage (dry matter [DM] basis) and 7 kg DM concentrate: Diet RNB- (n = 6) with energy and utilisable crude protein at the duodenum (uCP) according to the average requirement of the animals but with a negative RNB (-0.41 g N/MJ metabolisable energy [ME]); Diet RNB0 (n = 7) with energy, uCP and a RNB (0.08 g N/MJ ME) according to the average requirement of the animals and, finally, Diet NA (n = 5), which was the same diet as RNB-, but supplemented with 6 g niacin/d. Samples of milk were taken on two consecutive days, blood samples were taken on one day pre- and post-feeding and faeces and urine were collected completely over five consecutive days. The negative RNB reduc