International Scholarly Research Notices The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2015 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Characterization and Prediction of Cracks in Coated Materials: Direction and Length of Crack Propagation in Bimaterials Sat, 31 Jan 2015 14:09:14 +0000 The behaviour of materials is governed by the surrounding environment. The contact area between the material and the surrounding environment is the likely spot where different forms of degradation, particularly rust, may be generated. A rust prevention treatment, like bluing, inhibitors, humidity control, coatings, and galvanization, will be necessary. The galvanization process aims to protect the surface of the material by depositing a layer of metallic zinc by either hot-dip galvanizing or electroplating. In the hot-dip galvanizing process, a metallic bond between steel and metallic zinc is obtained by immersing the steel in a zinc bath at a temperature of around 460°C. Although the hot-dip galvanizing procedure is recognized to be one of the most effective techniques to combat corrosion, cracks can arise in the intermetallic layer. These cracks can affect the life of the coated material and decrease the lifetime service of the entire structure. In the present paper the mechanical response of hot-dip galvanized steel submitted to mechanical loading condition is investigated. Experimental tests were performed and corroborative numerical and analytical methods were then applied in order to describe both the mechanical behaviour and the processes of crack/cracks propagation in a bimaterial as zinc-coated material. C. I. Pruncu, Z. Azari, C. Casavola, and C. Pappalettere Copyright © 2015 C. I. Pruncu et al. All rights reserved. Diagnostic Accuracy of Mucosal Biopsy versus Endoscopic Mucosal Resection in Barrett’s Esophagus and Related Superficial Lesions Thu, 29 Jan 2015 08:29:25 +0000 Background. Endoscopic surveillance for early detection of dysplastic or neoplastic changes in patients with Barrett's esophagus (BE) depends usually on biopsy. The diagnostic and therapeutic role of endoscopic mucosal resection (EMR) in BE is rapidly growing. Objective. The aim of this study was to check the accuracy of biopsy for precise histopathologic diagnosis of dysplasia and neoplasia, compared to EMR in patients having BE and related superficial esophageal lesions. Methods. A total of 48 patients with previously diagnosed BE (36 men, 12 women, mean age years) underwent routine surveillance endoscopic examination. Biopsies were taken from superficial lesions, if present, and otherwise from BE segments. Then, EMR was performed within three weeks. Results. Biopsy based histopathologic diagnoses were nondysplastic BE (NDBE), 22 cases; low-grade dysplasia (LGD), 14 cases; high-grade dysplasia (HGD), 8 cases; intramucosal carcinoma (IMC), two cases; and invasive adenocarcinoma (IAC), two cases. EMR based diagnosis differed from biopsy based diagnosis (either upgrading or downgrading) in 20 cases (41.67%), (Kappa , 95% CI: 0.170–0.69). Conclusions. Biopsy is not a satisfactory method for accurate diagnosis of dysplastic or neoplastic changes in BE patients with or without suspicious superficial lesions. EMR should therefore be the preferred diagnostic method in such patients. Hany M. Elsadek and Mamdouh M. Radwan Copyright © 2015 Hany M. Elsadek and Mamdouh M. Radwan. All rights reserved. Toxicity and Loss of Mitochondrial Membrane Potential Induced by Alkyl Gallates in Trypanosoma cruzi Wed, 28 Jan 2015 06:26:31 +0000 American trypanosomiasis or Chagas disease is a debilitating disease representing an important social problem that affects, approximately, 10 million people in the world. The main aggravating factor of this situation is the lack of an effective drug to treat the different stages of this disease. In this context, the search for trypanocidal substances isolated from plants, synthetic or semi synthetic molecules, is an important strategy. Here, the trypanocidal potential of gallates was assayed in epimastigotes forms of T. cruzi and also, the interference of these substances on the mitochondrial membrane potential of the parasites was assessed, allowing the study of the mechanism of action of the gallates in the T. cruzi organisms. Regarding the preliminary structure-activity relationships, the side chain length of gallates plays crucial role for activity. Nonyl, decyl, undecyl, and dodecyl gallates showed potent antitrypanosomal effect (IC50 from 1.46 to 2.90 μM) in contrast with benznidazole (IC50 = 34.0 μM). Heptyl gallate showed a strong synergistic activity with benznidazole, reducing by 105-fold the IC50 of benznidazole. Loss of mitochondrial membrane potential induced by these esters was revealed. Tetradecyl gallate induced a loss of 53% of the mitochondrial membrane potential, at IC50 value. Rogério Andréo, Luís Octávio Regasini, Maicon Segalla Petrônio, Bruna Galdorfini Chiari-Andréo, Aline Tansini, Dulce Helena Siqueira Silva, and Regina Maria Barretto Cicarelli Copyright © 2015 Rogério Andréo et al. All rights reserved. Restless Legs Syndrome among Pakistani Population: A Cross-Sectional Study Tue, 27 Jan 2015 10:02:56 +0000 Objective. Restless leg syndrome (RLS) is a chronic distressing disease characterized by an urge to move the legs with an unpleasantsensation during periods of rest. The global prevalence estimates of RLS range from 2.5% to 15%. Method. This cross-sectional study was conducted at various hospitals in Karachi during August 13 to March 14. The visitors who had accompanied patients to Outpatient Department or had come to visit admitted patients were approached conveniently. Subjects were interviewed regarding the essential criteria of RLS and its attributes. Results. The sample size was 390 with 56% being females. The point prevalence of RLS was estimated to be 23.6%. The prevalence in females was twice as high as compared to males. Smoking and low level of education were associated with RLS (). Among RLS positive individuals, 50.1% reported frequency of their symptoms to be greater than 16 days per month and 64.1% graded their symptom severity as mild to moderate. About 37% of RLS positive individuals consulted a general physician for their symptoms. Conclusion. RLS is highly prevalent and underdiagnosed condition among Pakistani population. Efforts must be directed to raise the awareness of this condition among physicians and general population. Khalid Mahmood, Rabeea Farhan, Asif Surani, Arif Anwer Surani, and Salim Surani Copyright © 2015 Khalid Mahmood et al. All rights reserved. Association between Serum Bilirubin and Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate among Diabetic Patients Mon, 26 Jan 2015 10:31:37 +0000 The subjects comprised 230 men aged 77 ± 10 (range: 50–100) years and 279 women aged 81 ± 10 (50–101) years that visited the medical department. We examined the relationship between increased serum bilirubin and renal function evaluated by estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) using CKD-EPI equations modified by a Japanese coefficient. Compared with the fourth quartile in serum bilirubin (1.01–1.97 mg/dL), the nonadjusted, age and gender-adjusted, and multivariate-adjusted odds ratios 95% confidence interval (CI) of eGFR <60 mL/min/1.73 m2 for the first quartile in serum bilirubin (0.13–0.50 mg/dL) were 2.08 (1.25–3.44), 1.82 (1.07–3.09), and 1.53 (0.83–2.81), respectively. Moreover, compared with the fourth quartile, nonadjusted, age and gender-adjusted, and multivariate-adjusted odds ratios (95% CI) of eGFR <45 mL/min/1.73 m2 for the first quartile were 3.50 (1.95–6.23), 3.12 (1.72–5.65), and 3.53 (1.71–7.26), respectively. The data were further stratified by gender, age, medication (antihypertensive, antidyslipidemic, and antidiabetic agents), and prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD). The standardized coefficients for eGFR were significant in all the subgroups other than the prevalence of CVD, and there were significant interactions between the two groups regarding CVD. Our data demonstrated an independent positive association between serum bilirubin and eGFR among diabetic patients. Takeaki Katoh, Ryuichi Kawamoto, Katsuhiko Kohara, and Tetsuro Miki Copyright © 2015 Takeaki Katoh et al. All rights reserved. Toxicity Evaluation of Pũrṇa Cantirotaya Centũram, a Siddha Medicine in Wistar Rats Mon, 26 Jan 2015 08:40:43 +0000 Pũrṇa Cantirotaya Centũram (PCC), a herbometallic formulation of Siddha medicine, consists of mercury, sulphur, and gold, processed with red cotton flower and plantain stem pith juices. To evaluate its safety, acute and 28-day repeated oral toxicity studies were performed following OECD test guidelines 423 and 407, respectively. In acute study, PCC was administered orally at 5, 50, 300, and 2000 mg/kg body weight. Animals were observed for toxic signs for 14 days. Gross pathology was performed at the end of the study. In repeated dose toxicity study, PCC was administered at 2.5, 25, and 50 mg/kg body weight daily for 28 days. Satellite groups (control and high dose) were also maintained to determine the delayed onset toxicity of PCC. In acute toxicity study, no treatment related death or toxic signs were observed. It revealed that the LD50 cut-off value of PCC is between 2000 and 5000 mg/kg body weight. The repeated dose study did not show evidence of any treatment related changes in all observations up to the high dose level, when compared with the control. Histopathological examination revealed no abnormalities except mild hyperplasia of stomach in high dose group. This study provides scientific validation for the safety of PCC. B. Chitra, R. S. Ramaswamy, and V. Suba Copyright © 2015 B. Chitra et al. All rights reserved. Historical Use of Cultivars as Parents in Florida and Louisiana Sugarcane Breeding Programs Tue, 20 Jan 2015 12:52:21 +0000 Sugarcane (Saccharum L. spp. hybrids) growers depend on breeding programs for new, high-yielding cultivars that have resistance to abiotic and biotic stresses, so breeders continually seek out widely adapted, high yielding germplasm to be used as parents for their programs. Cultivars are sometimes used for this purpose, but their use may be minimized to prevent genetic diversity erosion. The purpose of this study was to determine the importance of cultivars as parents in three USA (one in Florida and two in Louisiana) sugarcane breeding programs by quantifying the percentage of cultivars that had these parental groupings based on published registrations and crossing records. The percentage of cultivars with at least one commercial parent for each program was 81.8%, 77.5%, and 64.3% for the Houma (Ho), Louisiana, Canal Point (CP), Florida and Louisiana State University (LSU) programs, respectively, but cultivars were recently used as parents in only 11.8% (Ho), 16.39% (CP), and 34.3% (LSU) of crosses. The results indicate that the CP and Ho programs should consider increasing the use of cultivars as parents in their breeding programs to increase the probability of selecting potential commercial genotypes, but this should be balanced with high diversity crosses to avoid the loss of diversity. James Todd, Barry Glaz, David Burner, and Collins Kimbeng Copyright © 2015 James Todd et al. All rights reserved. Retracted: Utilization of Maternal and Child Health Care Services by Primigravida Females in Urban and Rural Areas of India Mon, 19 Jan 2015 14:17:12 +0000 International Scholarly Research Notices Copyright © 2015 International Scholarly Research Notices. All rights reserved. Micronutrients Deficiency, a Hidden Hunger in Nepal: Prevalence, Causes, Consequences, and Solutions Thu, 15 Jan 2015 08:22:33 +0000 Micronutrient deficiency is a global challenge to health as in Nepal. In Nepal, the targeted beneficiaries are less aware about importance of micronutrients (MNs), which has resulted in low intake of foods rich in MNs. Micronutrient deficiencies (MNDs) have huge impact on health of vulnerable population like women and children and have jeopardized the national economy and prosperity of developing countries including Nepal. However, less attention has been paid towards MNDs, which can be prevented. Therefore, this study aims to draw attention of the concerned authorities and researchers to combat against MNDs in Nepal. This study showed that different types of MNDs with higher prevalence exist in Nepal. The major causes of MNDs were poor diet, diseases and infestations, and poor health caring practices. The results of MNDs were unwanted child and maternal mortality, impairments of lives, and reduction in productivity and intellectual capacity. School health and nutrition education and supplementation and fortification of essential MNs proved to be effective while dietary diversification and economic growth and poverty eradication seemed promising. Control and prevention of MNDs can help to achieve Millennium Development Goals as well, so studies in this sector should be emphasized. Shiva Bhandari and Megha Raj Banjara Copyright © 2015 Shiva Bhandari and Megha Raj Banjara. All rights reserved. Computational Investigations on the Effects of Gurney Flap on Airfoil Aerodynamics Wed, 14 Jan 2015 06:20:55 +0000 The present study comprises steady state, two-dimensional computational investigations performed on NACA 0012 airfoil to analyze the effect of Gurney flap (GF) on airfoil aerodynamics using k-ε RNG turbulence model of FLUENT. Airfoil with GF is analyzed for six different heights from 0.5% to 4% of the chord length, seven positions from 0% to 20% of the chord length from the trailing edge, and seven mounting angles from 30° to 120° with the chord. Computed values of lift and drag coefficients with angle of attack are compared with experimental values and good agreement is found at low angles of attack. In addition static pressure distribution on the airfoil surface and pathlines and turbulence intensities near the trailing edge are present. From the computational investigation, it is recommended that Gurney flaps with a height of 1.5% chord be installed perpendicular to chord and as close to the trailing edge as possible to obtain maximum lift enhancement with minimum drag penalty. Shubham Jain, Nekkanti Sitaram, and Sriram Krishnaswamy Copyright © 2015 Shubham Jain et al. All rights reserved. Design, Development, and Performance Evaluation of Solar Heating System for Disinfection of Domestic Roof-Harvested Rainwater Mon, 12 Jan 2015 13:36:10 +0000 A box-type solar heater was designed, constructed, and used to determine the effect of solar heating on quality of domestic roof-harvested rainwater (DRHRW). During testing, naturally contaminated DRHRW was harvested in Ibadan, Nigeria, and released into the system at 93.96 Lh−1 ( m3 s−1) in a continuous flow process. Water temperatures at inlet, within the heating chamber, and at outlet from the heating chamber and solar radiation were monitored at 10 min interval. Samples were collected at both inlet to and outlet from the heating chamber at 10 min interval for microbiological analysis. The highest plate stagnation temperature, under no-load condition, was 100°C. The solar water heater attained a maximum operational temperature of 75°C with 89.6 and 94.4% reduction in total viable count and total coliform count, respectively, while Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus were completely eradicated at this temperature. The solar heater developed proved to be effective in enhancing potability of DRHRW in Ibadan, Nigeria. This may be an appropriate household water treatment technology for developing countries, hence, a way of resolving problem of low quality water for potable uses. O. A. Akintola and A. Y. Sangodoyin Copyright © 2015 O. A. Akintola and A. Y. Sangodoyin. All rights reserved. Novel Starch-PVA Polymer for Microparticle Preparation and Optimization Using Factorial Design Study Mon, 12 Jan 2015 10:19:36 +0000 The aim of our present work was to optimize the ratio of a very novel polymer, starch-polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), for controlled delivery of Ornidazole. Polymer-coated drug microparticles were prepared by emulsion method. Microscopic study, scanning electron microscopic study, and atomic force microscopic study revealed that the microparticles were within 10 micrometers of size with smooth spherical shape. The Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy showed absence of drug polymer interaction. A statistical 32 full factorial design was used to study the effect of different concentration of starch and PVA on the drug release profile. The three-dimensional plots gave us an idea about the contribution of each factor on the release kinetics. Hence this novel polymer of starch and polyvinyl alcohol can be utilized for control release of the drug from a targeted delivery device. Helen Chattopadhyay, Amit Kumar De, and Sriparna Datta Copyright © 2015 Helen Chattopadhyay et al. All rights reserved. Manual Medium Incision Cataract Surgery with Descemet’s Stripping Endothelial Keratoplasty: A Novel Triple Procedure Mon, 12 Jan 2015 06:42:11 +0000 Purpose. To describe the surgical technique and outcomes of combined Descemet’s stripping endothelial keratoplasty and medium incision manual cataract surgery (MICS) in Chinese eyes. Methods. Surgery was performed in 8 eyes of 7 patients (5 females, 2 males). Primary outcomes included success of the surgery and final outcomes. Results. Surgery was performed in patients with Fuchs’ endothelial dystrophy and cataract (mean age years). MICS tunnel was used to insert the donor lenticule into the anterior chamber. All surgeries were performed successfully. Graft dislocation was seen in 1 eye requiring repositioning with intracameral sulfur hexafluoride gas on the first postoperative day. Graft rejection was noted in one patient at the end of one year. The mean decimal best-corrected visual acuity improved from to . Suboptimal visual acuity in 2 cases was due to radiotherapy-related optic neuropathy and myopic maculopathy . The mean target spherical refraction was diopters (myopic) and the mean achieved spherical refraction was 1.18 ± 0.87 diopters (hyperopic) resulting in a mean hyperopic shift of 2.2 diopters. Conclusions. The approach of combined Descemet’s stripping endothelial keratoplasty and MICS is a viable surgical technique for cases with endothelial dysfunction and cataract. Alvin L. Young, Prudence P. C. Chow, and Vishal Jhanji Copyright © 2015 Alvin L. Young et al. All rights reserved. Nutritional Markers and Body Composition in Hemodialysis Patients Sun, 11 Jan 2015 08:52:33 +0000 The aims of this study were to analyse body composition, to detect the presence of undernutrition, and to establish a relationship between undernutrition and the biological markers routinely used as indicators of nutritional status in hemodialysis (HD) patients (pts). We used a body composition monitor (BCM) that expresses body weight in terms of lean tissue mass (LTM) and fat tissue mass (FTM) independent of hydration status. From nine HD units, 934 pts were included. Undernutrition was defined as having a lean tissue index (LTI = LTM/height2) below the 10th percentile of a reference population. Biochemical markers and parameters delivered by BCM were used to compare low LTI and normal LTI groups. Undernutrition prevalence was 58.8% of the population studied. Low LTI pts were older, were significantly more frequently overhydrated, and had been on HD for a longer period of time than the normal LTI group. FTI (FTI = FTM/ height2) was significantly higher in low LTI pts and increased according to BMI. LTI was not influenced by different BMI levels. Albumin and C-reactive protein correlated inversely (). However neither of them was statistically different when considering undernourished and normal LTI pts. Our BCM study was able to show a high prevalence of undernutrition, as expressed by low LTI. In our study, BMI and other common markers, such as albumin, failed to predict malnutrition as determined by BCM. Rodolfo Valtuille, Maria Elisa Casos, Elmer Andres Fernandez, Adrian Guinsburg, and Cristina Marelli Copyright © 2015 Rodolfo Valtuille et al. All rights reserved. Perinatal Outcome in Women with Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy: A Retrospective Cohort Study Thu, 08 Jan 2015 13:30:13 +0000 Background. Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP) are multisystem diseases known to increase the risk of perinatal mortality worldwide, with a significant proportion of these deaths occurring in low income countries. However, little is known about the obstetric and treatment predictors of perinatal mortality in women with HDP. Methods. A retrospective cohort study design was used to include 1015 hypertensive pregnant women who gave birth to 1110 babies between 2008 and 2013 in three university teaching hospitals. Bivariate and multivariate regression models were used to estimate the associations between selected predictor variables and perinatal mortality taking the onset of HDP illness to death or discharge from the hospital as the time period. Results. There were 322 perinatal deaths resulting in a perinatal mortality rate (PMR) of 290/1000 total births. The proportion of stillbirths was more than 4-fold higher than early neonatal deaths (81% versus 19%). The multivariate analysis demonstrated that multiparity (OR, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.12–228), grand multiparity (OR, 2.8; 95% CI, 1.55–4.92), preterm (OR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.02–2.35) and very preterm gestational age (OR, 7.7; 95% CI, 5.26–11.20), lack of antenatal care (OR, 2.0; 95% CI, 1.43–2.67), having eclampsia (OR, 4.1; 95% CI, 2.85–6.04), antepartum or before (OR, 6.6; 95% CI, 3.40–12.75) and intrapartum onset of HDP (OR, 4.0; 95% CI, 1.99–8.04), raised SGOT level (OR, 2.3; 95% CI, 1.30–3.91), vaginal delivery (OR, 5.3; 95% CI, 2.93–9.54), low fetal birth weight (OR, 4.3; 95% CI, 2.56–7.23), and maternal death (OR, 12.8; 95% CI, 2.99–54.49) were independent predictors of perinatal mortality. Conclusion. This study showed that the PMR of HDP was among the highest in the world. Parity, gestational age, type and onset of HDP, mode of delivery, birthweight, and maternal outcome were strong predictors of perinatal mortality. Gezehagn Endeshaw and Yifru Berhan Copyright © 2015 Gezehagn Endeshaw and Yifru Berhan. All rights reserved. Effect of Regular Exercise Program on Depression in Hemodialysis Patients Tue, 06 Jan 2015 14:15:30 +0000 Background and Aim. Depression is the most common psychological disorder in hemodialysis patients which decreases their quality of life and increases the mortality. This study was conducted to assess the effect of regular exercise on depression in hemodialysis patients. Methods. In a randomized clinical trial, 51 hemodialysis patients were allocated in two groups. Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) scale was used to assessing depression rate in participants. Designed program was educated using poster and face-to-face methods for case group. Intervention was carried out three times a week for ten weeks. At the beginning and the end of the study, depression rate of the subjects was assessed. Data was analyzed by SPSS16 software and descriptive and inferential statistics. Findings. According to the results of this study, there were no differences between case and control groups in depression rate at the beginning of the study, but there was significant difference after intervention . In the beginning of the study, the mean and SD of depression in case group were and reduced to at the end . Conclusion. The regular exercise program could reduce the depression in hemodialysis patients; therefore it is suggested for training this program for hemodialysis patients. This trial is registered with Iranian Registry of Clinical Trial (IRCT) number IRCT201205159763N1. Jahangir Rezaei, Alireza Abdi, Mansour Rezaei, Jafar Heydarnezhadian, and Rostam Jalali Copyright © 2015 Jahangir Rezaei et al. All rights reserved. Yaws Prevalence, Lessons from the Field and the Way Forward towards Yaws Eradication in Ghana Wed, 31 Dec 2014 11:34:02 +0000 Despite past WHO/UNICEF led global yaws eradication efforts, the disease seems to persist. The true burden is however not known for comprehensive action. Ghana’s data showed significant increase in notified cases since the 1970s. Recognizing limitations in routine data, we carried out a yaws treatment survey in 2008 in three purposively selected districts to establish the prevalence and learn lessons for renewed action. Of 208,413 school children examined, 4,006 were suspected yaws cases (prevalence 1.92 (95% CI: 1.86–1.98) percent). Of 547 schools surveyed, 13% had prevalence between 5% and 10% while 3% had prevalence above 10%. The highest school prevalence was 19.5%. Half of the schools had cases. The large sample allowed aggregating the school results by administrative levels. The lowest aggregated prevalences of 0.23%, 0.40%, and 0.64% were in the urban sub-districts of Asamankese, Oda, and Achiase, respectively, while the highest of 8.61%, 3.69%, and 1.4% were in rural Akroso, Mepom, and Aperade, respectively. In conclusion, the prevalence of yaws is high in some schools in rural, hard-to-reach areas of Ghana. Considering past global eradication efforts, our findings suggest yaws may be resurging for which programmatic action is needed. Patrick Agana-Nsiire, Ekow Kaitoo, Emmanuel Erasmus Akurugu Agongo, George Bonsu, Sadik Kyei-Faried, Kwame Amponsa-Achiano, Kofi Ahmed, Ebenezer Appiah-Denkyira, Kingsley Asiedu, Joseph Amankwa, and Frank Adae Bonsu Copyright © 2014 Patrick Agana-Nsiire et al. All rights reserved. An Examination of Forest Certification Status among Logging Companies in Cameroon Wed, 31 Dec 2014 10:29:44 +0000 This paper assesses the level of interest, awareness, and adoption of ISO 14001 and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification schemes among logging companies in Cameroon. Eleven logging companies located in Douala in the Littoral Region of Cameroon were assessed through a structured interview using an administered questionnaire which was mostly analyzed qualitatively thereafter. The findings indicated that none of the companies was certified for ISO 14001; however 63.64% of them were already FSC-certified. Four companies (36.36%) were neither FSC- nor ISO 14001 EMS-certified. Among the factors found to influence the adoption rate was the level of awareness about ISO 14001 and FSC certification schemes. The main drivers for pursuing FSC certification were easy penetration into international markets, tax holiday benefits, and enhancement of corporate image of the logging companies through corporate social responsibility fulfillments. Poor domestic market for certified products was found to be the major impediment to get certified. To make logging activities more environmentally friendly and socially acceptable, logging companies should be encouraged to get certified through the ISO 14001 EMS scheme which is almost nonexistent so far. This requires awareness creation about the scheme, encouraging domestic markets for certified products and creating policy incentives. Daniel Nukpezah, Dieudonne Alemagi, Lalisa Duguma, Peter Minang, Charlie Mbosso, and Zac Tchoundjeu Copyright © 2014 Daniel Nukpezah et al. All rights reserved. 350 nm Broadband Supercontinuum Generation Using Dispersion Engineered Near Zero Ultraflat Square-Lattice PCF around 1.55 μm and Fabrication Tolerance Analysis Wed, 31 Dec 2014 07:38:50 +0000 In this work, a new design of ultraflat dispersion PCF based on square-lattice geometry with all uniform air holes towards broadband smooth SCG around the C-band of wavelength has been presented. The air hole of the inner ring was infiltrated with liquid of certain refractive indices. Numerical investigations establish a near zero ultraflattened dispersion of 0 ± 0.78 ps/nm/km in a wavelength range of 1496 nm to 2174 nm (678 nm bandwidth) covering most of the communications bands with the first zero dispersion wavelength around 1.54 μm. With the optimized ultraflattened fiber, we have achieved a broadband SC spectrum with FWHM of 350 nm with the central wavelength of 1550 nm with less than a meter long of the fiber by using a picosecond pulse laser. We have also analyzed the sensitivity of the optimized dispersion design by small variations from the optimum value of the geometrical structural parameters. Our investigations establish that for a negative change of PCF parameters, the profile retains the smooth and flat SCG spectra; however, for a positive change, the smooth and a flat spectrum is lost. The new design of the fiber will be capable of covering huge diverse field of DWDM sources, spectroscopy, meteorology, optical coherence tomography, and optical sensing. Partha Sona Maji and Partha Roy Chaudhuri Copyright © 2014 Partha Sona Maji and Partha Roy Chaudhuri. All rights reserved. Hydroxyapatite-Based Colloidal Gels Facilitate the Proliferation and Migration of Chondrocytes and the Adhesion of Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stem Cells Mon, 29 Dec 2014 06:33:00 +0000 Collective movement of cells that have been delivered on biomaterials for transplantation purposes would be a desirable attribute that would promote wound healing, cell proliferation, and eventual growth and regeneration of damaged organs. We hypothesized that colloidal gels made from hydroxyapatite (HA) and poly(D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) particles will be conducive to the growth and migration of porcine chondrocytes, will allow the adhesion of human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells, and will have negligible effects on the cell cycle of these cells. Then, we performed experiments designed to assess the viability and migratory properties of porcine chondrocytes studded on nanosized HA/PLGA particles. Our experiments show that porcine chondrocytes migrated in and around a hydroxyapatite-based biomaterial that could be described as a colloidal gel. Cells in the colloidal gel demonstrated unidirectional movement. Cells were seen to be extending lamellae and were followed by other cells. Syed A. Jamal and Qiang Ye Copyright © 2014 Syed A. Jamal and Qiang Ye. All rights reserved. Determining Nitrate and Nitrite Content in Beverages, Fruits, Vegetables, and Stews Marketed in Arak, Iran Thu, 25 Dec 2014 13:09:08 +0000 Background and Objectives. Presence of excessive nitrite and nitrate in foodstuff can have toxic and carcinogenic effects on humans. This study is aimed at measuring nitrate and nitrite in different foodstuffs available in Arak city market, Iran, in 2013. Methods. Totally 323 samples including stew (102 samples), beverage (116 samples), fruit (55 samples), and vegetables (50 samples) were randomly collected and analyzed according to official AOAC method 973 and ISO 6635 through spectrophotometric method. Results. Average concentration of nitrate and nitrite in the samples was 6.58–136.76, 1.52–38.22 mg kg−1 or liter, respectively. Presence of nitrate and nitrite was confirmed in all samples. High levels of nitrate and nitrite were observed in celery and ghormeh stew; and lower level of nitrate and nitrite was found in traditionally produced vinegar, verjuice, and tomato. Conclusions. It was found that the mean values for nitrite in investigated products were higher than ADI levels of WHO. Mohammad Rezaei, Ali Fani, A. Latif Moini, Parisa Mirzajani, Ali Akbar Malekirad, and Mohammad Rafiei Copyright © 2014 Mohammad Rezaei et al. All rights reserved. Outcome Predictors in First-Ever Ischemic Stroke Patients: A Population-Based Study Thu, 25 Dec 2014 11:45:57 +0000 Background. There is scant population-based information regarding predictors of stroke severity and long-term mortality for first-ever ischemic strokes. The aims of this study were to determine the characteristics of patients who initially presented with first-ever ischemic stroke and to identify predictors of severity and long-term mortality. Methods. Data were collected from the population-based Cerebrovascular Aosta Registry. Between 2004 and 2008, 1057 patients with first-ever ischemic stroke were included. Variables analysed included comorbidities, sociodemographic factors, prior-to-stroke risk factors, therapy at admission and pathophysiologic and metabolic factors. Multivariate logistic regression models, Kaplan-Meier estimates, and Cox proportional Hazards model were used to assess predictors. Results. Predictors of stroke severity at admission were very old age (odds ratio [OR] 2.98, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.75–5.06), female gender (OR 1.73, 95% CI 1.21–2.40), atrial fibrillation (OR 2.76, 95% CI 1.72–4.44), low ejection fraction (OR 2.22, CI 95% 1.13–4.32), and cardioembolism (OR 2.0, 95% CI 1.36–2.93). Predictors of long-term mortality were very old age (hazard ratio [HR] 2.02, 95% CI 1.65–2.47), prestroke modified Rankin scale 3–5 (HR 1.82; 95% CI 1.46–2.26), Charlson Index 2 (HR 1.97; 95% CI 1.62–2.42), atrial fibrillation (HR 1.43, 95% CI 1.04–1.98), and stroke severity (HR 3.54, 95% CI 2.87–4.36). Conclusions. Very old age and cardiac embolism risk factors are the independent predictors of stroke severity. Moreover, these factors associated with other comorbid medical conditions influence independently long-term mortality after ischemic stroke. Giovanni Corso, Edo Bottacchi, Piera Tosi, Laura Caligiana, Chiara Lia, Massimo Veronese Morosini, and Paola Dalmasso Copyright © 2014 Giovanni Corso et al. All rights reserved. Characteristics of Primary Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma in Iran: A 10-Year Retrospective Study Wed, 24 Dec 2014 09:18:16 +0000 Background. Primary cutaneous T-cell lymphomas (CTCLs) are a group of extranodal non-Hodgkin lymphomas that may be present in the skin without any evidence of extracutaneous disease. The aim of this study was to evaluate the epidemiological characteristics of primary CTCL in Isfahan, Iran. Method. A total of 95 patients who were diagnosed as having primary CTCL were recruited during a 10-year period (2003–2013) and were classified according to the new WHO-EORTC criteria. Results. The patient group consisted of 43 (44.8%) males and 53 (55.2%) females, which indicated a female predominance (M : F ratio 1 : 1.2). The mean age at the time of diagnosis was 41.78 ± 16.88 years (range: 7–84 years). Prior to diagnosis, the lesions had persisted for a mean of 8.34 ± 4.38 years (range: 0–55 years). The age at peak diagnosis was 20–40 years (43%). The most frequent subtypes were mycosis fungoides (MF) (88.5%). Four patients died from CTCL-related complications. Conclusions. The distinguishing epidemiologic characteristics of primary CTCL, particularly those MF, in Iran, are the absence of a male predominance and lower age at diagnosis. This is likely because of the characteristic ethnic group diversity and increased susceptibility among younger population. Farahnaz Fatemi Naeini, Hamidreza Sadeghiyan, Mohsen Pourazizi, Jamshid Najafian, and Bahareh Abtahi-Naeini Copyright © 2014 Farahnaz Fatemi Naeini et al. All rights reserved. The Translated Dowling Polynomials and Numbers Mon, 22 Dec 2014 07:14:43 +0000 More properties for the translated Whitney numbers of the second kind such as horizontal generating function, explicit formula, and exponential generating function are proposed. Using the translated Whitney numbers of the second kind, we will define the translated Dowling polynomials and numbers. Basic properties such as exponential generating functions and explicit formula for the translated Dowling polynomials and numbers are obtained. Convexity, integral representation, and other interesting identities are also investigated and presented. We show that the properties obtained are generalizations of some of the known results involving the classical Bell polynomials and numbers. Lastly, we established the Hankel transform of the translated Dowling numbers. Mahid M. Mangontarum, Amila P. Macodi-Ringia, and Normalah S. Abdulcarim Copyright © 2014 Mahid M. Mangontarum et al. All rights reserved. Epidemiology of Malocclusion and Assessment of Orthodontic Treatment Need for Nepalese Children Mon, 22 Dec 2014 00:10:32 +0000 Objective. To evaluate the prevalence of malocclusion and orthodontic treatment needs among 12- to 15-year-old schoolchildren in eastern Nepal and compare the findings with those of other populations. Methods. Two thousand seventy-four children (1149 males and 925 females) aged between 12 and 15 years were evaluated. Their orthodontic treatment need was assessed using the Index of Orthodontic Treatment Needs (IOTN) (dental health component (DHC)). Angle’s classes of malocclusion were also evaluated. Results. The prevalence of classes I, II, and III was 48.50%, 32.68%, and 4.32%, respectively. The IOTN showed that 21.59% had an extreme treatment need, 24.67% had severe treatment need, 24.07% had moderate treatment need, 14.7% had mild treatment need, and 15.02% had no treatment need. Conclusion. Class I malocclusion is the most common, while class III is the least prevalent in eastern Nepal. The majority of the children need orthodontic treatment. Varun Pratap Singh and Amita Sharma Copyright © 2014 Varun Pratap Singh and Amita Sharma. All rights reserved. Antioxidant and Antidiabetic Effect of Aqueous Fruit Extract of Passiflora ligularis Juss. on Streptozotocin Induced Diabetic Rats Sun, 21 Dec 2014 14:01:28 +0000 Diabetes mellitus is the most common endocrine disorder that impairs glucose homeostasis resulting in severe diabetic complications including retinopathy, angiopathy, nephropathy, and neuropathy causing neurological disorders due to perturbation in utilization of glucose. Hypoglycemic activity was detected in aqueous extract of Passiflora ligularis, a traditionally used medicinal plant, using streptozotocin (STZ, 30 mg/kg body weight) induced diabetic rat model. Oral administration of aqueous extract of Passiflora ligularis to diabetic rats for 30 days resulted in a decrease in blood glucose. The diabetic rats had decreased levels of serum total protein, albumin, globulin, and albumin/globulin ratio as compared to control rats. In addition, the activities of hepatic and renal markers were significantly elevated in diabetic rats as compared to control rats. Treatment with aqueous fruit extract of P. ligularis and glibenclamide reversed these parameters to near normal. Extract at a dose of 400 mg/kg given orally for 30 days showed significant elevation in enzymatic (SOD, catalase, and Gpx) and nonenzymatic antioxidants (vitamin C, vitamin E, and reduced glutathione). Plant extract treated groups showed significant decrease in lipid peroxidation (LPO). Aqueous extract of Passiflora ligularis fruit can decrease the blood glucose and reduce the oxidative stress by removing free radicals in diabetes. Palanirajan Anusooriya, Deivasigamani Malarvizhi, Velliyur Kanniappan Gopalakrishnan, and Kanakasabapathi Devaki Copyright © 2014 Palanirajan Anusooriya et al. All rights reserved. Urinary Continence Outcomes after Puboprostatic Ligament Preserving Open Retropubic Radical Prostatectomy at a Sub-Saharan Hospital Sun, 21 Dec 2014 00:10:34 +0000 Background. Open retropubic radical prostatectomy is a commonly performed procedure for clinically localized prostate cancer. The demand for high level functional outcomes after therapy is increasing especially for young age patients; in this regard refinements in the surgical technique have been made. There is limited data to show the success of some of these refinements in resource limited settings. Methods. A retrospective clinical study was performed over a 2-year period at Mengo Hospital, Urology Unit. Men with clinically localized prostate cancer and who consented to the procedure were eligible and were recruited. Consequently excluded were those that turned out to have advanced disease and those with severe comorbidities. Patients were followed up for 3 months after surgery. Data was entered using SPSS version 17 and analyzed. Results. A total of 24 men with clinically localized prostate cancer underwent open retropubic puboprostatic ligament preserving radical prostatectomy technique. Mean age was 66, range 54–75 years. Outcome. Two patients had stress incontinence and three were incontinent at 3 months. The urinary continence recovery rate was 19/24 (79%) at 3 months. Conclusion. Preservation of the puboprostatic ligament in open retropubic radical prostatectomy was associated with rapid and a high rate of return to urinary continence among men with clinically localized disease. S. Kaggwa and M. Galukande Copyright © 2014 S. Kaggwa and M. Galukande. All rights reserved. Efficacy of Levofloxacin Based Triple and High-Dose PPI-Amoxicillin Dual Eradication Therapy for Helicobacter pylori after Failures of First- and Second-Line Therapies Wed, 17 Dec 2014 00:11:09 +0000 Objectives. The aim of this study was to investigate and compare the eradication rate of Helicobacter pylori as the third-line triple therapy with rabeprazole (RPZ) + amoxicillin (AMPC) + levofloxacin (LVFX) and high-dose RPZ + AMPC. Methods. 51 patients who failed Japanese first-line (proton pump inhibitor (PPI) + AMPC + clarithromycin) and second-line (PPI + AMPC + metronidazole) eradication therapy were randomly assigned at a 1 : 1 ratio to one of the following third-line eradication groups: (1) RAL group: RPZ 10 mg (b.i.d.), AMPC 750 mg (b.i.d.), and LVFX 500 mg (o.d.) for 10 days; (2) RA group: RPZ 10 mg (q.i.d.) and AMPC 500 mg (q.i.d.) for 14 days. Patients who failed to respond to third-line eradication therapy received salvage therapy. Results. The rates of eradication success, based on intention to treat (ITT) analysis, were 45.8% in the RAL group and 40.7% in the RA group. The overall eradication rates were 73.9% in the RAL group and 64.0% in the RA group. There was no significant difference between the two groups. Conclusions. The third-line triple therapy with RPZ, AMPC, and LVFX was as effective as that with high-dose RPZ and AMPC. Kenichiro Okimoto, Makoto Arai, Keiko Saito, Shoko Minemura, Daisuke Maruoka, Tomoaki Matsumura, Tomoo Nakagawa, Tatsuro Katsuno, Chisato Ishii, Shota Murata, Masaharu Watanabe, Fumio Nomura, and Osamu Yokosuka Copyright © 2014 Kenichiro Okimoto et al. All rights reserved. Copper Oxide Nanomaterials Prepared by Solution Methods, Some Properties, and Potential Applications: A Brief Review Wed, 17 Dec 2014 00:11:06 +0000 Cupric oxide (CuO), having a narrow bandgap of 1.2 eV and a variety of chemophysical properties, is recently attractive in many fields such as energy conversion, optoelectronic devices, and catalyst. Compared with bulk material, the advanced properties of CuO nanostructures have been demonstrated; however, the fact that these materials cannot yet be produced in large scale is an obstacle to realize the potential applications of this material. In this respect, chemical methods seem to be efficient synthesis processes which yield not only large quantities but also high quality and advanced material properties. In this paper, the effect of some general factors on the morphology and properties of CuO nanomaterials prepared by solution methods will be overviewed. In terms of advanced nanostructure synthesis, microwave method in which copper hydroxide nanostructures are produced in the precursor solution and sequentially transformed by microwave into CuO may be considered as a promising method to explore in the near future. This method produces not only large quantities of nanoproducts in a short reaction time of several minutes, but also high quality materials with advanced properties. A brief review on some unique properties and applications of CuO nanostructures will be also presented. Thi Ha Tran and Viet Tuyen Nguyen Copyright © 2014 Thi Ha Tran and Viet Tuyen Nguyen. All rights reserved. MHD Two-Fluid Flow and Heat Transfer between Two Inclined Parallel Plates in a Rotating System Wed, 17 Dec 2014 00:11:00 +0000 Two-phase magnetohydrodynamic convective flow of electrically conducting fluid through an inclined channel is studied under the action of a constant transverse magnetic field in a rotating system. The fluids in the two phases are steady, incompressible, laminar, immiscible, and electrically conducting, having different densities, viscosities, and thermal and electrical conductivities. The transport properties of both the fluids are assumed constant. The bounding infinite inclined parallel plates are maintained at different constant temperatures, making an angle with the horizontal. Approximate solutions for velocity and temperature distributions are obtained by using a straightforward regular perturbation technique. An in-depth study has been done on the effects of rotation parameter, Hartmann number, inclination angle, the ratio of electrical conductivities, and viscosities of two fluids on the flow. It is observed that the effect of increasing rotation is to decrease the primary velocity. Further it is noticed that as the rotation increases, the secondary velocity increases for smaller rotation, while for larger rotation it decreases. It is also found that the temperature distribution decreases as the rotation increases. P. Sri Ramachandra Murty and G. Balaji Prakash Copyright © 2014 P. Sri Ramachandra Murty and G. Balaji Prakash. All rights reserved.