Hindawi Publishing Corporation http://www.hindawi.com The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2015 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Serum Indicators Reflecting Gastric Function May Also Correlate with Other Extragastric Diseases Mon, 03 Aug 2015 16:39:37 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/grp/2015/867495/ Aim. Serological indicators of organ function can reveal intrinsic links between different organs. The present study aimed to determine the correlations of serum indicators for gastric and extragastric function. Methods. A total of 823 individuals were enrolled. Data on indicators reflecting blood lipids, blood glucose, indexes of stomach, kidney, liver, and thyroid function, and H. pylori IgG antibody level were collected. Results. As creatine (Cr) levels increased, PGI (pepsinogen I), PGII concentrations, and PGI/II ratio increased monotonically from 79.7 to 105.15 µg/L, 6.5 to 8.4 µg/L, and 11.97 to 12.27, respectively (). As thyroid peroxidase antibody (TPOAb) levels increased, PGI level decreased from 100.85 to 84 µg/L () and as thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) increased, PGI/II ratio increased monotonically from 11.54 to 12.68 (). As triglyceride (TG) levels increased, gastrin 17 (G17) concentrations increased monotonically from 1.73 to 2.7 pmol/L (). As serum glucose and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1C) increased, PGI/II concentrations increased monotonically from 11.98 to 12.67 and 9.7 to 13.54 (), respectively. Conclusions. Serum PG and G17 levels were associated with blood glucose and lipids, kidney function, and thyroid function but not with liver function. Serum indicators reflecting gastric function may correlate not only with primary diseases, but also with other extragastric diseases. Yuehua Gong, Wei Wang, Yi Li, and Yuan Yuan Copyright © 2015 Yuehua Gong et al. All rights reserved. Cuckoo Search Algorithm Based on Repeat-Cycle Asymptotic Self-Learning and Self-Evolving Disturbance for Function Optimization Mon, 03 Aug 2015 16:36:56 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/374873/ In order to improve convergence velocity and optimization accuracy of the cuckoo search (CS) algorithm for solving the function optimization problems, a new improved cuckoo search algorithm based on the repeat-cycle asymptotic self-learning and self-evolving disturbance (RC-SSCS) is proposed. A disturbance operation is added into the algorithm by constructing a disturbance factor to make a more careful and thorough search near the bird’s nests location. In order to select a reasonable repeat-cycled disturbance number, a further study on the choice of disturbance times is made. Finally, six typical test functions are adopted to carry out simulation experiments, meanwhile, compare algorithms of this paper with two typical swarm intelligence algorithms particle swarm optimization (PSO) algorithm and artificial bee colony (ABC) algorithm. The results show that the improved cuckoo search algorithm has better convergence velocity and optimization accuracy. Jie-sheng Wang, Shu-xia Li, and Jiang-di Song Copyright © 2015 Jie-sheng Wang et al. All rights reserved. Development of Agranulocytosis after Discontinuation of Methimazole: An Unusual Case Mon, 03 Aug 2015 16:35:53 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crie/2015/974524/ Agranulocytosis is a rare and critical adverse effect of antithyroid drugs (ATD). The occurrence of agranulocytosis in continuous ATD treatment patients is well known; however, a case of ATD agranulocytosis occurring following the discontinuation of methimazole (MMI) treatment is not a usual situation. We herein describe a case of a 41-year-old woman who was previously administered methimazole (MMI) for ten days and developed ATD-induced agranulocytosis and symptoms of an upper respiratory tract infection after three weeks following discontinuation of MMI treatment. A thorough hematologic and serological evaluation did not disclose an alternative cause for the agranulocytosis. After receiving empirical antibiotic treatment, she responded successfully with clinical improvement of her symptoms and resolved neutropenia on the seventh day. This case is atypical because agranulocytosis developed after discontinuation of MMI, which strengthens the importance of remaining alert for signs of agranulocytosis even after discontinuation of ATD treatment. Rıfkı Üçler, Murat Atmaca, Ömer Candar, Murat Alay, Burhan Göy, Erdal Kara, Mahfuz Turan, and Yusuf Demir Copyright © 2015 Rıfkı Üçler et al. All rights reserved. Application of a Gastroduodenal Artery Graft for Reconstruction of the Hepatic Artery during Radical Resection of Hilar Cholangiocarcinoma Mon, 03 Aug 2015 16:34:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/grp/2015/934565/ This paper was designed to evaluate a novel surgical procedure of using a gastroduodenal artery graft for reconstruction of the hepatic artery during radical resection of hilar cholangiocarcinoma, which is citation-free and self-contained. In this paper we retrospectively analyzed the clinical data, surgical procedure, and follow-up results in nine patients who underwent hepatic artery reconstruction using a gastroduodenal artery graft during their radical resection of hilar cholangiocarcinoma and no artery thrombosis or other surgical complications were found after operation with minimum follow-up duration of three months. We recommended that a gastroduodenal artery graft was shown to be a good choice for hepatic artery resection after radical resection of hilar cholangiocarcinoma. Yurong Liang, Jing Wang, Xianjie Shi, Jiahong Dong, and Wanqing Gu Copyright © 2015 Yurong Liang et al. All rights reserved. Gigantol Suppresses Cancer Stem Cell-Like Phenotypes in Lung Cancer Cells Mon, 03 Aug 2015 16:33:56 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/836564/ As cancer stem cells (CSCs) contribute to malignancy, metastasis, and relapse of cancers, potential of compound in inhibition of CSCs has garnered most attention in the cancer research as well as drug development fields recently. Herein, we have demonstrated for the first time that gigantol, a pure compound isolated from Dendrobium draconis, dramatically suppressed stem-like phenotypes of human lung cancer cells. Gigantol at nontoxic concentrations significantly reduced anchorage-independent growth and survival of the cancer cells. Importantly, gigantol significantly reduced the ability of the cancer cells to form tumor spheroids, a critical hallmark of CSCs. Concomitantly, the treatment of the compound was shown to reduce well-known lung CSCs markers, including CD133 and ALDH1A1. Moreover, we revealed that gigantol decreased stemness in the cancer cells by suppressing the activation of protein kinase B (Akt) signal which in turn decreased the cellular levels of pluripotency and self-renewal factors Oct4 and Nanog. In conclusion, gigantol possesses CSCs suppressing activity which may facilitate the development of this compound for therapeutic approaches by targeting CSCs. Narumol Bhummaphan and Pithi Chanvorachote Copyright © 2015 Narumol Bhummaphan and Pithi Chanvorachote. All rights reserved. Phosphatase and Tensin Homologue: Novel Regulation by Developmental Signaling Mon, 03 Aug 2015 16:30:02 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jst/2015/282567/ Phosphatase and tensin homologue (PTEN) is a critical cell endogenous inhibitor of phosphoinositide signaling in mammalian cells. PTEN dephosphorylates phosphoinositide trisphosphate (PIP3), and by so doing PTEN has the function of negative regulation of Akt, thereby inhibiting this key intracellular signal transduction pathway. In numerous cell types, PTEN loss-of-function mutations result in unopposed Akt signaling, producing numerous effects on cells. Numerous reports exist regarding mutations in PTEN leading to unregulated Akt and human disease, most notably cancer. However, less is commonly known about nonmutational regulation of PTEN. This review focuses on an emerging literature on the regulation of PTEN at the transcriptional, posttranscriptional, translational, and posttranslational levels. Specifically, a focus is placed on the role developmental signaling pathways play in PTEN regulation; this includes insulin-like growth factor, NOTCH, transforming growth factor, bone morphogenetic protein, wnt, and hedgehog signaling. The regulation of PTEN by developmental mediators affects critical biological processes including neuronal and organ development, stem cell maintenance, cell cycle regulation, inflammation, response to hypoxia, repair and recovery, and cell death and survival. Perturbations of PTEN regulation consequently lead to human diseases such as cancer, chronic inflammatory syndromes, developmental abnormalities, diabetes, and neurodegeneration. Travis J. Jerde Copyright © 2015 Travis J. Jerde. All rights reserved. Size of the Optic Nerve Head and Its Relationship with the Thickness of the Macular Ganglion Cell Complex and Peripapillary Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer in Patients with Primary Open Angle Glaucoma Mon, 03 Aug 2015 16:24:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/joph/2015/186249/ Purpose. To evaluate the relationships among the optic nerve head (ONH) area, macular ganglion cell complex (mGCC) thickness, circumpapillary retinal nerve fiber layer (cpRNFL) thickness, and visual field defects in patients with primary open angle glaucoma (POAG). Methods. This retrospective study included 90 eyes of 90 patients with POAG. The ONH area, rim area, mGCC thickness, and cpRNFL thickness were measured using optical coherence tomography. Mean deviation (MD) was measured using standard automated perimetry. The relationships among clinical factors including age, refraction, the ONH area, the rim area, the mGCC thickness, the cpRNFL thickness, and MD were evaluated using correlation coefficients and multiple regression analyses. Results. The significant correlation of the ONH area with refraction (, ), the mGCC thickness (, ), and the cpRNFL thickness (, ) was found. Multiple regression analysis showed that the ONH area, rim area, and MD were selected as significant contributing factors to explain the mGCC thickness and cpRNFL thickness. No factor was selected to explain MD. Conclusions. The ONH area, in other words, the disc size itself may affect the mGCC thickness and cpRNFL thickness in POAG patients. Nobuko Enomoto, Ayako Anraku, Kyoko Ishida, Asuka Takeyama, Fumihiko Yagi, and Goji Tomita Copyright © 2015 Nobuko Enomoto et al. All rights reserved. The Role of Obesity Training in Medical School and Residency on Bariatric Surgery Knowledge in Primary Care Physicians Mon, 03 Aug 2015 15:46:22 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijfm/2015/841249/ Objective. US primary care physicians are inadequately educated on how to provide obesity treatment. We sought to assess physician training in obesity and to characterize the perceptions, beliefs, knowledge, and treatment patterns of primary care physicians. Methods. We administered a cross-sectional web-based survey from July to October 2014 to adult primary care physicians in practices affiliated with the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). We evaluated survey respondent demographics, personal health habits, obesity training, knowledge of bariatric surgery care, perceptions, attitudes, and beliefs regarding the etiology of obesity and treatment strategies. Results. Younger primary care physicians (age 20–39) were more likely to have received some obesity training than those aged 40–49 (OR: 0.08, 95% CI: 0.008–0.822) or those 50+ (OR: 0.03, 95% CI: 0.004–0.321). Physicians who were young, had obesity, or received obesity education in medical school or postgraduate training were more likely to answer bariatric surgery knowledge questions correctly. Conclusions. There is a need for educational programs to improve physician knowledge and competency in treating patients with obesity. Obesity is a complex chronic disease, and it is important for clinicians to be equipped with the knowledge of the multiple treatment modalities that may be considered to help their patients achieve a healthy weight. Fatima Cody Stanford, Erica D. Johnson, Mechelle D. Claridy, Rebecca L. Earle, and Lee M. Kaplan Copyright © 2015 Fatima Cody Stanford et al. All rights reserved. Plasticity of Neuron-Glial Transmission: Equipping Glia for Long-Term Integration of Network Activity Mon, 03 Aug 2015 15:46:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/np/2015/765792/ The capacity of synaptic networks to express activity-dependent changes in strength and connectivity is essential for learning and memory processes. In recent years, glial cells (most notably astrocytes) have been recognized as active participants in the modulation of synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity, implicating these electrically nonexcitable cells in information processing in the brain. While the concept of bidirectional communication between neurons and glia and the mechanisms by which gliotransmission can modulate neuronal function are well established, less attention has been focussed on the computational potential of neuron-glial transmission itself. In particular, whether neuron-glial transmission is itself subject to activity-dependent plasticity and what the computational properties of such plasticity might be has not been explored in detail. In this review, we summarize current examples of plasticity in neuron-glial transmission, in many brain regions and neurotransmitter pathways. We argue that induction of glial plasticity typically requires repetitive neuronal firing over long time periods (minutes-hours) rather than the short-lived, stereotyped trigger typical of canonical long-term potentiation. We speculate that this equips glia with a mechanism for monitoring average firing rates in the synaptic network, which is suited to the longer term roles proposed for astrocytes in neurophysiology. Wayne Croft, Katharine L. Dobson, and Tomas C. Bellamy Copyright © 2015 Wayne Croft et al. All rights reserved. Improvement of Biodegradable Biocide’s Activity of Peroxyacetic Acid Basis Using Surfactants: Characterization and Stability Mon, 03 Aug 2015 15:45:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/150206/ This paper deals with the study of the kinetics decomposition reaction of the peroxyacetic acid under influence of surfactant additives. The peroxyacetic acid shows a decomposition rate of 1.70 10−3 h−1 and its activation energy is 66 kJ mol−1. The influence of temperature on the reaction of spontaneous decomposition of peroxyacetic acid was studied at two seasonal periods. Peroxyacetic acid standard and four prototypes of biocide samples with known concentration of peroxyacetic acid and hydrogen peroxide were studied. Finally, a factorial analysis ANOVA was carried out to establish significant differences () between the four biocide samples over time with respect to peroxyacetic acid and hydrogen peroxide concentration. From the study carried out, it can be concluded that the biocide with surfactant substances in its composition offers the best stability and its difference versus the other biocides may guarantee a better behaviour. Esther Asensio, Fernando Sanagustín, Cristina Nerín, and Milton Rosero-Moreano Copyright © 2015 Esther Asensio et al. All rights reserved. Timetable Design for Urban Rail Line with Capacity Constraints Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:34:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2015/429219/ To design an efficient and economical timetable for a heavily congested urban rail corridor, a scheduling model is proposed in this paper. The objective of the proposed model is to find the departure time of trains at the start terminal to minimize the system cost, which includes passenger waiting cost and operating cost. To evaluate the performance of the timetable, a simulation model is developed to simulate the detailed movements of passengers and trains with strict constraints of station and train capacities. It assumes that passengers who arrive early will have more chances to access a station and board a train. The accessing and boarding processes of passengers are all based on a first-come-first-serve basis. When a station is full, passengers unable to access must wait outside until the number of waiting passengers at platform falls below a given value. When a train is full, passengers unable to board must wait at the platform for the next train to arrive. Then, based on the simulation results, a two-stage genetic algorithm is introduced to find the best timetable. Finally, a numerical example is given to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed model and solution method. Yu-Ting Zhu, Bao-Hua Mao, Lu Liu, and Ming-Gao Li Copyright © 2015 Yu-Ting Zhu et al. All rights reserved. Remote Hemorrhage in the Cerebellum and Temporal Lobe after Lumbar Spine Surgery Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:32:29 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crior/2015/972798/ Cerebellar hemorrhage remote from the site of surgery can complicate neurosurgical procedures. However, this complication after lumbar surgery is rare. Furthermore, hemorrhage in both the cerebellum and the temporal lobe after spine surgery is rarer still. Herein we present a case of remote hemorrhage in both the cerebellum and the temporal lobe after lumbar spine surgery. A 79-year-old woman with a Schwannoma at the L4 level presented with low back and bilateral leg pain refractory to conservative management. Surgery was undertaken to remove the Schwannoma and to perform posterior fusion. During the surgery, the dura mater was removed in order to excise the Schwannoma. Reconstruction of the dura mater was performed; postoperatively the patient had a cerebrospinal fluid leak. Five days after surgery, clouding of consciousness started gradually, and hemorrhage in the cerebellum and the temporal lobe was revealed by computed tomography. Emergent evacuation of the hemorrhage was performed and the patient recovered consciousness after the surgery. Leakage of cerebrospinal fluid may have induced this hemorrhage. While rare, intracranial hemorrhage after spine surgery can occur, sometimes requiring emergent intervention. Shotaro Watanabe, Seiji Ohtori, Sumihisa Orita, Kazuyo Yamauchi, Yawara Eguchi, Yasuchika Aoki, Junichi Nakamura, Masayuki Miyagi, Miyako Suzuki, Gou Kubota, Kazuhide Inage, Takeshi Sainoh, Jun Sato, Yasuhiro Shiga, Koki Abe, Kazuki Fujimoto, Hiroto Kanamoto, Gen Inoue, Takeo Furuya, Masao Koda, Akihiko Okawa, Kazuhisa Takahashi, and Masashi Yamazaki Copyright © 2015 Shotaro Watanabe et al. All rights reserved. The Use of Virtual Reality in Psychology: A Case Study in Visual Perception Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:32:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cmmm/2015/151702/ Recent proliferation of available virtual reality (VR) tools has seen increased use in psychological research. This is due to a number of advantages afforded over traditional experimental apparatus such as tighter control of the environment and the possibility of creating more ecologically valid stimulus presentation and response protocols. At the same time, higher levels of immersion and visual fidelity afforded by VR do not necessarily evoke presence or elicit a “realistic” psychological response. The current paper reviews some current uses for VR environments in psychological research and discusses some ongoing questions for researchers. Finally, we focus on the area of visual perception, where both the advantages and challenges of VR are particularly salient. Christopher J. Wilson and Alessandro Soranzo Copyright © 2015 Christopher J. Wilson and Alessandro Soranzo. All rights reserved. Glaze Icing on Superhydrophobic Coating Prepared by Nanoparticles Filling Combined with Etching Method for Insulators Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:30:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/404071/ Icing on insulators may cause flashover or even blackout accidents in the power transmission system. However, there are few anti-icing techniques for insulators which consume energy or manpower. Considering the water repelling property, the superhydrophobic surface is introduced for anti-icing of insulators. Among the icing forms, the glaze icing owns the highest density, strongest adhesion, and greatest risk to the power transmission system but lacks researches on superhydrophobic surface. In this paper, superhydrophobic surfaces with contact angle of 166.4°, contact angle hysteresis of 0.9°, and sliding angle of less than 1° are prepared by nanoparticle filling combined with etching method. The coated glass slide and glass insulator showed excellent anti-icing performance in the glaze icing test at −5°C. The superhydrophobicity and anti-icing property of the coatings benefit from the low surface energy and hierarchical rough structure containing micron scale pits and nanoscale coralloid bulges supported by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) characterization. Chao Guo, Ruijin Liao, Yuan Yuan, Zhiping Zuo, and Aoyun Zhuang Copyright © 2015 Chao Guo et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Contact Time and Gas Component on Interfacial Tension of CO2/Crude Oil System by Pendant Drop Method Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:29:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/285891/ Pendant drop method has been used to measure the equilibrium interfacial tension and dynamic interfacial tension of CO2/crude oil system under the simulated-formation condition, in which the temperature is 355.65 K and pressure ranges from 0 MPa to 30 MPa. The test results indicated that the equilibrium interfacial tension of CO2/crude oil systems decreased with the increase of the systematic pressure. The dynamic interfacial tension of CO2/original oil, CO2/remaining oil, and CO2/produced oil systems is large at the initial contact and decreases gradually after that, and then finally it reaches dynamic balance. In addition, the higher the pressure is, the larger the magnitude of changing of CO2/crude oil interfacial tension with time will reduce. Moreover, by PVT phase experiment, gas-oil ratio, gas composition, and well fluid composition have been got, and different contents of light components in three oil samples under reservoir conditions have also been calculated. The relationship between equilibrium interfacial tensions and pressures of three different components of crude oil and CO2 system was studied, and the higher C1 is, the lower C2–C10 will be, and the equilibrium interfacial tension will get higher. Therefore, the effect of light weight fractions on interfacial tension under formation conditions was studied. Xin Wang, Lifeng Liu, Zengmin Lun, Chengyuan Lv, Rui Wang, Haitao Wang, and Dong Zhang Copyright © 2015 Xin Wang et al. All rights reserved. The Knowledge of Expert Opinion in Intuitionistic Fuzzy Linear Programming Problem Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:28:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2015/875460/ In real life, information available for certain situations is vague and such uncertainty is unavoidable. One possible solution is to consider the knowledge of experts on the parameters involved as intuitionistic fuzzy data. We examine a linear programming problem in which all the coefficients are intuitionistic in nature. An approach is presented to solve an intuitionistic fuzzy linear programming problem. In this proposed approach, a procedure for allocating limited resources effectively among competing demands is developed. An example is given to highlight the illustrated study. A. Nagoorgani, J. Kavikumar, and K. Ponnalagu Copyright © 2015 A. Nagoorgani et al. All rights reserved. Supplier Selection Group Decision Making in Logistics Service Value Cocreation Based on Intuitionistic Fuzzy Sets Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:28:29 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2015/719240/ Intuitionistic fuzzy information aggregation plays an important role in intuitionistic fuzzy set theory and is widely used in group decision making. In this paper, an induced intuitionistic fuzzy Einstein hybrid aggregation operator (I-IFEHA) is investigated for supplier selection group decision making in logistics service value cocreation based on fuzzy measures. We first introduce some aggregation operators and Einstein operations on intuitionistic fuzzy sets and develop a new induced intuitionistic fuzzy Einstein hybrid aggregation operator to accommodate the environment in which the given arguments are intuitionistic fuzzy values. Then, we study the supplier selection group decision model in logistics service value cocreation based on intuitionistic fuzzy sets with the I-IFEHA operator. Finally, an example of 3PL supplier selection in logistics service value cocreation environment is given to verify the developed approach and to demonstrate the effectiveness of the developed approach. Qifeng Wang and Hongbo Lv Copyright © 2015 Qifeng Wang and Hongbo Lv. All rights reserved. Morphophysiological Behavior and Cambial Activity in Seedlings of Two Amazonian Tree Species under Shade Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:27:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jb/2015/863968/ Variations in light intensity can lead to important anatomical and morphophysiological changes in plants. Aiming to increase knowledge about the Amazonian tree species, this study examines the influence of shade on the cambial activity and development of Parkia gigantocarpa Ducke and Schizolobium parahyba var. amazonicum (Huber ex Ducke) Barneby seedlings. Seedlings of the two species were grown in a nursery under four shade intensities (treatments): full sun, low, moderate, and high shade (resp., 0%, 23%, 67%, and 73% of shade, or 2000, 1540, 660, and 540 µmol·m−2·s−1) obtained with polyethylene screens. We measured plant height, stem diameter, biomass production, stomatal conductance (), transpiration (E), photosynthesis (A), and cambial activity (CA) (xylem, cambium, and phloem). Also, we calculated the Dickson Quality Index (DQI). The highest values of biomass production, ,  E, A, and DQI, were found under full sun, in P. gigantocarpa, and under low shade intensity in S. parahyba. In both species high shade intensity reduced CA. We concluded that the CA and the physiological and morphological attributes work together, explaining the radial growth and increasing seedlings quality, which optimized efficient seedling production under full sun, in P. gigantocarpa, and under low shade intensity in S. parahyba. Monyck Jeane dos Santos Lopes, Moacyr Bernardino Dias-Filho, Marco Antônio Menezes Neto, and Eniel David Cruz Copyright © 2015 Monyck Jeane dos Santos Lopes et al. All rights reserved. Study of Magnetization Reversal Process in FeCo/Ru/FeCo Exchange Coupled Synthetic Antiferromagnetic Multilayers Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:26:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/452851/ FeCo/Ru/FeCo exchange coupled synthetic antiferromagnetic multilayers were prepared with two sputtering modes. One is continuous sputtering mode, and the other mode is layer-by-layer sputtering mode. The former mode implies that substrate faced the target and film growth process was continuous when FeCo layers were sputtering, whereas the latter implies that substrate was rotating with the mask at a speed of 5 rpm when FeCo layers were sputtering. It was found that the exchange coupling field of sample sputtered by layer-by-layer mode was higher than the one sputtered by continuous mode. Domain structures were measured with applying varied in-plane magnetic fields along the easy axis in order to study the magnetization reversal process. We found it is a domain wall move process. When the applied field is smaller than , both the two magnetic layers have domain structure and the domain structure of the two layers is reversed correspondingly. When the applied field is varying in the range of to , the domain wall of the two layers moves correspondingly at the same time. Xi Liu, Shunji Ishio, and Hailin Ma Copyright © 2015 Xi Liu et al. All rights reserved. Design of Pd-Based Bimetallic Catalysts for ORR: A DFT Calculation Study Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:24:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/932616/ Developing Pd-lean catalysts for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) is the key for large-scale application of proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). In the present paper, we have proposed a multiple-descriptor strategy for designing efficient and durable ORR Pd-based alloy catalysts. We demonstrated that an ideal Pd-based bimetallic alloy catalyst for ORR should possess simultaneously negative alloy formation energy, negative surface segregation energy of Pd, and a lower oxygen binding ability than pure Pt. By performing detailed DFT calculations on the thermodynamics, surface chemistry and electronic properties of Pd-M alloys, Pd-V, Pd-Fe, Pd-Zn, Pd-Nb, and Pd-Ta, are identified theoretically to have stable Pd segregated surface and improved ORR activity. Factors affecting these properties are analyzed. The alloy formation energy of Pd with transition metals M can be mainly determined by their electron interaction. This may be the origin of the negative alloy formation energy for Pd-M alloys. The surface segregation energy of Pd is primarily determined by the surface energy and the atomic radius of M. The metals M which have smaller atomic radius and higher surface energy would tend to favor the surface segregation of Pd in corresponding Pd-M alloys. Lihui Ou Copyright © 2015 Lihui Ou. All rights reserved. Big Data-Driven Based Real-Time Traffic Flow State Identification and Prediction Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:23:41 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2015/284906/ With the rapid development of urban informatization, the era of big data is coming. To satisfy the demand of traffic congestion early warning, this paper studies the method of real-time traffic flow state identification and prediction based on big data-driven theory. Traffic big data holds several characteristics, such as temporal correlation, spatial correlation, historical correlation, and multistate. Traffic flow state quantification, the basis of traffic flow state identification, is achieved by a SAGA-FCM (simulated annealing genetic algorithm based fuzzy c-means) based traffic clustering model. Considering simple calculation and predictive accuracy, a bilevel optimization model for regional traffic flow correlation analysis is established to predict traffic flow parameters based on temporal-spatial-historical correlation. A two-stage model for correction coefficients optimization is put forward to simplify the bilevel optimization model. The first stage model is built to calculate the number of temporal-spatial-historical correlation variables. The second stage model is present to calculate basic model formulation of regional traffic flow correlation. A case study based on a real-world road network in Beijing, China, is implemented to test the efficiency and applicability of the proposed modeling and computing methods. Hua-pu Lu, Zhi-yuan Sun, and Wen-cong Qu Copyright © 2015 Hua-pu Lu et al. All rights reserved. Augmented Reality: A Brand New Challenge for the Assessment and Treatment of Psychological Disorders Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:23:18 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cmmm/2015/862942/ Augmented Reality is a new technological system that allows introducing virtual contents in the real world in order to run in the same representation and, in real time, enhancing the user’s sensory perception of reality. From another point of view, Augmented Reality can be defined as a set of techniques and tools that add information to the physical reality. To date, Augmented Reality has been used in many fields, such as medicine, entertainment, maintenance, architecture, education, and cognitive and motor rehabilitation but very few studies and applications of AR exist in clinical psychology. In the treatment of psychological disorders, Augmented Reality has given preliminary evidence to be a useful tool due to its adaptability to the patient needs and therapeutic purposes and interactivity. Another relevant factor is the quality of the user’s experience in the Augmented Reality system determined from emotional engagement and sense of presence. This experience could increase the AR ecological validity in the treatment of psychological disorders. This paper reviews the recent studies on the use of Augmented Reality in the evaluation and treatment of psychological disorders, focusing on current uses of this technology and on the specific features that delineate Augmented Reality a new technique useful for psychology. Irene Alice Chicchi Giglioli, Federica Pallavicini, Elisa Pedroli, Silvia Serino, and Giuseppe Riva Copyright © 2015 Irene Alice Chicchi Giglioli et al. All rights reserved. A Compact Experimental Planar Antenna with a USB Connector for Mobile Phone Application Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:22:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijap/2015/217241/ A practical antenna design combined with a universal serial bus (USB) connector in close vicinity is proposed. In the proposed arrangement, the antenna unit consisted of two planar inverted F antennas (PIFAs) placed on the two sides of the USB connector. The antenna is located at the bottom of the mobile phone to avoid the crowded space on the top side of the phone where various mobile phone accessories are usually assigned. A diplexer is incorporated in the unit to alleviate the adverse effect of the metal USB connector on the radiating efficiency of the antenna. A prototype antenna was fabricated and tested and showed good coverage for GSM850/900/1800/1900, UMTS2100, and LTE700/2500 multibands operation. The overall performances demonstrated the good design of the proposed unit for mobile phone application. Cheng-Hung Lin and Kwong-Kau Tiong Copyright © 2015 Cheng-Hung Lin and Kwong-Kau Tiong. All rights reserved. Effects Comparison of Different Resilience Enhancing Strategies for Municipal Water Distribution Network: A Multidimensional Approach Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:22:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2015/438063/ Water distribution network (WDN) is critical to the city service, economic rehabilitation, public health, and safety. Reconstructing the WDN to improve its resilience in seismic disaster is an important and ongoing issue. Although a considerable body of research has examined the effects of different reconstruction strategies on seismic resistance, it is still hard for decision-makers to choose optimal resilience enhancing strategy. Taking the pipeline ductile retrofitting and network meshed expansion as demonstration, we proposed a feasible framework to contrast the resilience enhancing effects of two reconstruction strategies—units retrofitting strategy and network optimization strategy—in technical and organizational dimension. We also developed a new performance response function (PRF) which is based on network equilibrium theory to conduct the effects comparison in integrated technical and organizational dimension. Through the case study of municipal WDN in Lianyungang, China, the comparison results were thoroughly shown and the holistic decision-making support was provided. Xudong Zhao, Zhilong Chen, and Huadong Gong Copyright © 2015 Xudong Zhao et al. All rights reserved. Fivefold Symmetric Photonic Quasi-Crystal Fiber for Dispersion Compensation from S- to L-Band and Optimized at 1.55 μm Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:20:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aoe/2015/417401/ A highly dispersive dual core quasi-periodic photonic crystal fiber is proposed for chromatic dispersion compensation. The dispersion for the dual concentric core fiber is optimized to compensate the chromatic dispersion with a high negative dispersion, accomplishing the communication bandwidth from S-band (1460 nm) to L-band (1625 nm). By precise control of structural parameter we have achieved a maximum dispersion of −18,838 ps/nm-km with the phase matching wavelength centred around 1.55 μm. We also numerically investigate the influence of structural parameter and doping effects and its response on peak dispersion parameter. Sivacoumar Rajalingam and Zachariah C. Alex Copyright © 2015 Sivacoumar Rajalingam and Zachariah C. Alex. All rights reserved. Coevolution of Artificial Agents Using Evolutionary Computation in Bargaining Game Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:19:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/am/2015/468128/ Analysis of bargaining game using evolutionary computation is essential issue in the field of game theory. This paper investigates the interaction and coevolutionary process among heterogeneous artificial agents using evolutionary computation (EC) in the bargaining game. In particular, the game performance with regard to payoff through the interaction and coevolution of agents is studied. We present three kinds of EC based agents (EC-agent) participating in the bargaining game: genetic algorithm (GA), particle swarm optimization (PSO), and differential evolution (DE). The agents’ performance with regard to changing condition is compared. From the simulation results it is found that the PSO-agent is superior to the other agents. Sangwook Lee Copyright © 2015 Sangwook Lee. All rights reserved. The Photoluminescence Behaviors of a Novel Reddish Orange Emitting Phosphor CaIn2O4:Sm3+ Codoped with Zn2+ or Al3+ Ions Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:16:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/969724/ A novel reddish orange phosphor CaIn2O4:Sm3+ codoped with Zn2+ or Al3+ ions was prepared by solid state reaction and their luminescence properties were investigated under near ultraviolet excitation. The strategy of Zn2+ or Al3+ ions codoping was used with the aim to improve the luminescence properties of CaIn2O4:Sm3+, but the concrete effects of the two ions is different. The introduction of Zn2+ ions can produce defects that favor charge balance in CaIn2O4:Sm3+ to facilitate its photoluminescence. The effect of Al3+ ions codoping can effectively transfer energy from charge-transfer absorption band to characteristic transition of Sm3+ ions, utilizing more energy from host absorption for the photoluminescence of Sm3+ ions. Based on these mechanisms, the luminescence intensity of CaIn2O4:0.6%Sm3+ was enhanced to 1.59 times and 1.51 times when codoping amount of Zn2+ and Al3+ ions reached 0.6%. However, the chromaticity coordinates of CaIn2O4:0.6%Sm3+ almost did not have any changes after Zn2+ ions or Al3+ ions codoping; those are still located at reddish orange region. The excellent luminescence properties of CaIn2O4:0.6%Sm3+,0.6%Zn2+ and CaIn2O4:0.6%Sm3+,0.6%Al3+ demonstrate that they both have potential application value as new-style reddish orange phosphors on light-emitting diode. Jing Gou, Dongyang Zhang, Binxun Yu, Jing Wang, and Shengzhong Liu Copyright © 2015 Jing Gou et al. All rights reserved. Synthesis and Electrochemical Performance of Graphene Wrapped SnxTi1−xO2 Nanoparticles as an Anode Material for Li-Ion Batteries Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:15:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/965061/ Ever-growing development of Li-ion battery has urged the exploitation of new materials as electrodes. Here, solid-solution nanomaterials were prepared by aqueous solution method. The morphology, structures, and electrochemical performance of nanoparticles were systematically investigated. The results indicate that Ti atom can replace the Sn atom to enter the lattice of SnO2 to form substitutional solid-solution compounds. The capacity of the solid solution decreases while the stability is improved with the increasing of the Ti content. Solid solution with x of 0.7 exhibits the optimal electrochemical performance. The Sn0.7Ti0.3O2 was further modified by highly conductive graphene to enhance its relatively low electrical conductivity. The Sn0.7Ti0.3O2/graphene composite exhibits much improved rate performance, indicating that the solid solution can be used as a potential anode material for Li-ion batteries. Xing Xin, Xufeng Zhou, Tao Shen, and Zhaoping Liu Copyright © 2015 Xing Xin et al. All rights reserved. Superhydrophobic Polyimide via Ultraviolet Photooxidation: The Evolution of Surface Morphology and Hydrophobicity under Different Ultraviolet Intensities Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:08:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/546384/ Ultraviolet (UV) photooxidation has recently been developed to fabricate superhydrophobic polyimide (PI) films in combination with fluoroalkylsilane modification. However, it remains unclear whether the surface morphology and hydrophobicity are sensitive to technical parameters such as UV intensity and radiation environment. Herein, we focus on the effects of UV intensity on PI surface structure and wettability to gain comprehensive understanding and more effective control of this technology. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) results showed that UV intensity governed the evolutionary pattern of surface morphology: lower UV intensity (5 mW/cm2) facilitated in-plane expansion of dendritic protrusions while stronger UV (10 and 15 mW/cm2) encouraged localized growth of protrusions in a piling-up manner. Surface roughness and hydrophobicity maximized at the intensity of 10 mW/cm2, as a consequence of the slowed horizontal expansion and preferred vertical growth of the protrusions when UV intensity increased. Based on these results, the mechanism that surface micro/nanostructures developed in distinct ways when exposed to different UV intensities was proposed. Though superhydrophobicity (water contact angle larger than 150°) can be achieved at UV intensity not less than 10 mW/cm2, higher intensity decreased the effectiveness. Therefore, the UV photooxidation under 10 mW/cm2 for 72 h is recommended to fabricate superhydrophobic PI films. Hongyu Gu, Lixin Song, Jinlin Zhang, and Zhenyi Qi Copyright © 2015 Hongyu Gu et al. All rights reserved. Preprocessing Techniques for High-Efficiency Data Compression in Wireless Multimedia Sensor Networks Mon, 03 Aug 2015 14:03:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/am/2015/380849/ We have proposed preprocessing techniques for high-efficiency data compression in wireless multimedia sensor networks. To do this, we analyzed the characteristics of multimedia data under the environment of wireless multimedia sensor networks. The proposed preprocessing techniques consider the characteristics of sensed multimedia data to perform the first stage preprocessing by deleting the low priority bits that do not affect the image quality. The second stage preprocessing is also performed for the undeleted high priority bits. By performing these two-stage preprocessing techniques, it is possible to reduce the multimedia data size in large. To show the superiority of our techniques, we simulated the existing multimedia data compression scheme with/without our preprocessing techniques. Our experimental results show that our proposed techniques increase compression ratio while reducing compression operations compared to the existing compression scheme without preprocessing techniques. Junho Park and Jaesoo Yoo Copyright © 2015 Junho Park and Jaesoo Yoo. All rights reserved. Variations in Community Prevalence and Determinants of Recreational and Utilitarian Walking in Older Age Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:56:02 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jar/2015/382703/ Background. Regular walking is critical to maintaining health in older age. We examined influences of individual and community factors on walking habits in older adults. Methods. We analyzed walking habits among participants of a prospective cohort study of 745 community-dwelling men and women, mainly aged 70 years or older. We estimated community variations in utilitarian and recreational walking, and examined whether the variations were attributable to community differences in individual and environmental factors. Results. Prevalence of recreational walking was relatively uniform while prevalence of utilitarian walking varied across the 16 communities in the study area. Both types of walking were associated with individual health and physical abilities. However, utilitarian walking was also strongly associated with several measures of neighborhood socioeconomic status and access to amenities while recreational walking was not. Conclusions. Utilitarian walking is strongly influenced by neighborhood environment, but intrinsic factors may be more important for recreational walking. Communities with the highest overall walking prevalence were those with the most utilitarian walkers. Public health promotion of regular walking should take this into account. Elizabeth Procter-Gray, Suzanne G. Leveille, Marian T. Hannan, Jie Cheng, Kevin Kane, and Wenjun Li Copyright © 2015 Elizabeth Procter-Gray et al. All rights reserved. Surface Morphology and Growth of Anodic Titania Nanotubes Films: Photoelectrochemical Water Splitting Studies Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:54:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/820764/ Design and development of one-dimensional nanoarchitecture titania (TiO) assemblies have gained significant scientific interest, which have become the most studied material as they exhibit promising functional properties. In the present study, anodic TiO2 films with different surface morphologies can be synthesized in an organic electrolyte of ethylene glycol (EG) by controlling an optimum content of ammonium fluoride (NH4F) using electrochemical anodization technique. Based on the results obtained, well-aligned and bundle-free TiO2 nanotube arrays with diameter of 100 nm and length of 8 µm were successfully synthesized in EG electrolyte containing ≈5 wt% of NH4F for 1 h at 60 V. However, formation of nanoporous structure and compact oxide layer would be favored if the content of NH4F was less than 5 wt%. In the photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting studies, well-aligned TiO2 nanotubular structure exhibited higher photocurrent density of ≈1 mA/cm2 with photoconversion efficiency of ≈2% as compared to the nanoporous and compact oxide layer due to the higher active surface area for the photon absorption to generate more photo-induced electrons during photoexcitation stage. Chin Wei Lai Copyright © 2015 Chin Wei Lai. All rights reserved. The Immunomodulatory Effects of Nidus Vespae on Human Peripheral Blood Immune Cells In Vitro Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:53:05 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/705308/ Nidus Vespae has been used in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) to treat various cancers, but the underlying mechanisms were not yet clarified. This study was to investigate the effect of Nidus Vespae decoction (NVD) on tumor cell viability and immunoregulating functions of human peripheral blood immune cells. The effects on tumor cell viability, peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) proliferation activity, and the tumor cell phagocytosis of monocytes were evaluated by cell counting kit-8. Tumor-killing activity of cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) was analyzed by 51Cr releasing assay. IgG production of B cells and cytokine (TNF-α and IL-6) secretion of monocytes were determined by ELISA method. Data showed that NVD has no significant inhibiting effects on gastric cancer cells growth. Nevertheless, it could obviously promote PBMC proliferation in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. After treatment with NVD, the CTL cytotoxicity against SGC-7901 was significantly greater than control. The TNF-α and IL-6 secretion of monocytes and the IgG production of B cells also increased remarkably. Furthermore, NVD could significantly promote the phagocytosis of monocytes on tumor cells. These results suggest that NVD appears to have an immunoenhancing effect on immune cells, indicating that Nidus Vespae is worth exploring for immunomodulatory effects in tumor treatment. Ming Zhu, Yang Ling, Qiufeng Qi, Yaping Zhang, Yanqing Bao, and Yongping Liu Copyright © 2015 Ming Zhu et al. All rights reserved. Improved Optimization Study of Integration Strategies in Solar Aided Coal-Fired Power Generation System Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:51:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijp/2015/217201/ Solar aided coal-fired power generation system (SACFPGS) combines solar energy and traditional coal-fired units in a particular way. This study mainly improves the solar thermal storage system. Genetic algorithm is used to optimize the SACFPGS. The best integration approach of the system, the collector area, and the corresponding thermal storage capacity to replace each high-pressure extraction are obtained when the amount of coal saving in unit solar investment per hour is at its largest. System performance before and after the improvement is compared. Results show that the improvement of the thermal storage system effectively increases the economic benefit of the integrated system. Rongrong Zhai, Miaomiao Zhao, Chao Li, Pan Peng, and Yongping Yang Copyright © 2015 Rongrong Zhai et al. All rights reserved. The Influence of Interleukin 17A and IL17F Polymorphisms on Chronic Periodontitis Disease in Brazilian Patients Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:50:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/147056/ A case-control study was conducted on patients with chronic periodontitis (CP) and healthy controls with the aim of evaluating possible association between interleukin 17A (IL17A) G197A (rs2275913) and IL17F T7488C (rs763780) polymorphisms and periodontitis. Genotypes were determined by PCR-RFLP method. Statistical analyses were conducted using the OpenEpi and SNPStas software to calculate Chi-square with Yates correction or Fisher’s exact tests, odds ratios (OR), and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). SNPStas software was used to calculate Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. IL17A AA genotype was more frequent in patients with chronic periodontitis (CP) in the codominant and recessive models (; OR = 2.53 and ; OR = 2.46, resp.), the females with CP (, OR = 4.34), Caucasoid patients with CP (, OR = 3.45), and nonsmoking Caucasian patients with CP (, OR = 3.51). The IL17A A allele was also more frequent in Caucasians with CP (, OR = 1.59). IL17F T7488C polymorphism was not associated with chronic periodontitis. In these patients from Southern Brazil, the IL17A rs2275913 polymorphisms, IL17A AA genotype, and the A allele were associated with a susceptibility to chronic periodontitis. Joana Maira Valentini Zacarias, Emília Ângela Sippert, Patrícia Yumeko Tsuneto, Jeane Eliete Laguila Visentainer, Cléverson de Oliveira e Silva, and Ana Maria Sell Copyright © 2015 Joana Maira Valentini Zacarias et al. All rights reserved. Design and Testing of a Shell-Encapsulated Solar Collector with the Compound Surface Concentrators Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:50:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijp/2015/130187/ This paper presents design and testing of a shell-encapsulated solar collector which can be used in north area of China for wall-amounting installation. The designed solar collector is based on the combination of a novel compound curved surface concentrator and an aluminum concentric solar receiver, which is contained in a glass evacuated-tube. As there is no perforative joint between the double-skin glass evacuated-tube and the aluminum concentric solar receiver, the difficulty of vacuum keeping for a glass-metal joint is avoided. The cavity shell provides an additional thermal insulation to reduce heat loss of the designed solar collector. The working principle of the compound curved surface concentrator is described. The ray-tracing results are given to show the effect of deviation angle of the concentrator on its optical efficiency, hence determining its maximum acceptance angle. A prototype of the designed solar collector has been constructed and tested under the sunny winter weather condition. The experimental results indicate that the hot water temperature higher than 80°C with a daily average efficiency of about 45~50% has been achieved at the average ambient temperature below 0°C, so the designed solar collector can produce hot water at a useful temperature in winter. Hongfei Zheng, Gang Wu, Jing Dai, and Yanyan Ma Copyright © 2015 Hongfei Zheng et al. All rights reserved. Factors Associated with Successful Treatment by Radiofrequency Treatment of the Soft Palate in Obstructive Sleep Apnea as the First-Line Treatment Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:50:18 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sd/2015/690425/ Background. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is recommended as the second-line treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). This study aims to study the factors associated with successful treatment by RFA in OSA patients as the first-line treatment. Methods. All patients diagnosed as mild to moderate OSA were enrolled prospectively and treated with RFA. Three points of soft palate were ablated: midline, left, and right paramedian sites. Baseline characteristics and clinical factors including snoring score (SS), Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), and apnea-hypopnea index (AHI), with minimal oxygen saturation, were recorded at baseline and three months after treatment. Results. During the study period, there were 51 patients who met the study criteria and received RFA treatment. At three months, the SS, ESS, and AHI were significantly lower than baseline values, while the minimal oxygenation was significantly increased from the baseline values. There were 16 patients (31.37%) who had an AHI of < 5 times/h. Only baseline AHI was significantly associated with an AHI of < 5 times/h at three months after RFA treatment. The adjusted odds ratio was 0.804 (95% CI: 0.699, 0.924). Conclusion. Transoral RFA treatment may be effective in mild to moderate OSA as the first-line treatment. Baseline AHI is associated with preferable outcome by RFA treatment. Nuntigar Sonsuwan, Kongsak Rujimethabhas, and Kittisak Sawanyawisuth Copyright © 2015 Nuntigar Sonsuwan et al. All rights reserved. Theoretical and Experimental Study of Spectral Selectivity Surface for Both Solar Heating and Radiative Cooling Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:49:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijp/2015/807875/ A spectral selectivity surface for both solar heating and radiative cooling was proposed. It has a high spectral absorptivity (emissivity) in the solar radiation band and atmospheric window band (i.e., 0.2~3 μm and 8~13 μm), as well as a low absorptivity (emissivity) in other bands aside from the solar radiation and atmospheric window wavelengths (i.e., 3~8 μm or above 13 μm). A type of composite surface sample was trial-manufactured combining titanium-based solar selective absorbing coating with polyethylene terephthalate (TPET). Sample tests showed that the TPET composite surface has clear spectral selectivity in the spectra of solar heating and radiation cooling wavelengths. The equilibrium temperatures of the TPET surface under different sky conditions or different inclination angles of surface were tested at both day and night. Numerical analysis and comparisons among the TPET composite surface and three other typical surfaces were also performed. These comparisons indicated that the TPET composite surface had a relative heat efficiency of 76.8% of that of the conventional solar heating surface and a relative temperature difference of 75.0% of that of the conventional radiative cooling surface, with little difference in cooling power. Mingke Hu, Gang Pei, Lei Li, Renchun Zheng, Junfei Li, and Jie Ji Copyright © 2015 Mingke Hu et al. All rights reserved. The Role of Dendritic Cells in Fibrosis Progression in Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:46:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/768071/ Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most frequent cause of chronic liver disease. NAFLD encompasses a wide range of pathologies, from simple steatosis to steatosis with inflammation to fibrosis. The pathogenesis of NAFLD progression has not been completely elucidated, and different liver cells could be implicated. This review focuses on the current evidence of the role of liver dendritic cells (DCs) in the progression from NAFLD to fibrosis. Liver DCs are a heterogeneous population of hepatic antigen-presenting cells; their main function is to induce T-cell mediated immunity by antigen processing and presentation to T cells. During the steady state liver DCs are immature and tolerogenic. However, in an environment of chronic inflammation, DCs are transformed to potent inducers of immune responses. There is evidence about the role of DC in liver fibrosis, but it is not clearly understood. Interestingly, there might be a link between lipid metabolism and DC function, suggesting that immunogenic DCs are associated with liver lipid storage, representing a possible pathophysiological mechanism in NAFLD development. A better understanding of the interaction between inflammatory pathways and the different cell types and the effect on the progression of NAFLD is of great relevance. Paloma Almeda-Valdes, Nancy E. Aguilar Olivos, Beatriz Barranco-Fragoso, Misael Uribe, and Nahum Méndez-Sánchez Copyright © 2015 Paloma Almeda-Valdes et al. All rights reserved. The Two-Way Association of Periodontal Infection with Systemic Disorders: An Overview Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:46:33 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/793898/ Oral cavity that harbors diverse bacterial populations could also act as a site of origin for spread of pathogenic microorganisms to different body sites, particularly in immunocompromised hosts, patients, the elderly, or the underprivileged. A number of recent publications have advocated that patients with periodontal diseases are more susceptible to metabolic endotoxemia, inflammation, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other related systemic complications, concluding that periodontal diseases could be a potential contributing risk factor for a wide array of clinically important systemic diseases. However, despite a significant increase in the prevalence of periodontal infections and systemic diseases in the past few decades, the fundamental biological mechanisms of connection between these ailments are still not fully explicated. Consequently, the mechanisms by which this bidirectional damage occurs are being explored with a concentric vision to develop strategies that could prevent or control the complications of these ailments. This paper attempts to summarize and hypothesize the diverse mechanisms that hint to a certain connection between the two prevalent chronic situations. Ravinder Nagpal, Yuichiro Yamashiro, and Yuichi Izumi Copyright © 2015 Ravinder Nagpal et al. All rights reserved. Fabrication of Mechanical Durable Polysiloxane Superhydrophobic Materials Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:44:47 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/284685/ A mechanical durable polysiloxane superhydrophobic surface was successfully prepared by means of polymerization of silanes blending with particles. The as-prepared polysiloxane surface showed stable superhydrophobicity even after the surface underwent a long distance friction. The superhydrophobicity of the polysiloxane materials can be even slightly enhanced by the surface abrasion. The scanning electron microscopy demonstrated that the micro- and nanometer structures distributed through the whole materials thickness are responsible for the mechanical durable superhydrophobicity. Mengnan Qu, Jinmei He, Sun Zhe, Kanshe Li, Xiangrong Liu, and Chunxia Yu Copyright © 2015 Mengnan Qu et al. All rights reserved. A Randomized Controlled Trial of Puncturing and Bloodletting at Twelve Hand Jing Points to Treat Acute Carbon Monoxide Poisoning as Adjunct to First Aid Treatment: A Study Protocol Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:41:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/827305/ Background. Acute carbon monoxide poisoning (ACOP) is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in many countries. Twelve Hand Jing Points (THJP) have been believed to be effective to treat all kinds of emergency calls in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) for more than 3000 years. This randomized controlled trial (RCT) is designed to evaluate the effectiveness of THJP in curing acute carbon monoxide poisoning in first aid treatment. This paper reports the protocol of the trial. Methods/Design. This RCT is a multicenter, randomized, controlled study undergoing in China. The compliant patients are divided into the bloodletting group and standard of care group. With first aid treatments given to both of the groups, the bloodletting group is bleeding at THJP upon being hospitalized. Primary outcomes and secondary outcomes will be measured and compared between these two groups. Before treatment, immediately after treatment, and 30 minutes, 1 hour, and 4 hours after treatment, patients’ basic vital signs and state of consciousness were observed. Before treatment and 1 and 4 hours after treatment, carboxyhemoglobin concentration in venous blood samples was detected. Discussion. The objective of this study is to provide convincing evidence to clarify the efficacy and safety of THJP for early treatment of acute carbon monoxide poisoning. Ying Yue, Xingfang Pan, Sai Zhang, Jun Jin, Wei Wang, Dongqiang Wang, Dexin Han, Guirong Wang, Qunliang Hu, Jingqing Kang, Shasha Ding, Yi Yang, Huaien Bu, and Yi Guo Copyright © 2015 Ying Yue et al. All rights reserved. Polymorphisms of Homologous Recombination RAD51, RAD51B, XRCC2, and XRCC3 Genes and the Risk of Prostate Cancer Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:36:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/acp/2015/828646/ Genetic polymorphisms in DNA repair genes may induce individual variations in DNA repair capacity, which may in turn contribute to the risk of cancer developing. Homologous recombination repair (HRR) plays a critical role in maintaining chromosomal integrity and protecting against carcinogenic factors. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the relationship between prostate cancer risk and the presence of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the genes involved in HRR, that is, RAD51 (rs1801320 and rs1801321), RAD51B (rs10483813 and rs3784099), XRCC2 (rs3218536), and XRCC3 (rs861539). Polymorphisms were analyzed by PCR-RFLP and Real-Time PCR in 101 patients with prostate adenocarcinoma and 216 age- and sex-matched controls. A significant relationship was detected between the RAD51 gene rs1801320 polymorphism and increased prostate cancer risk. Our results indicate that the RAD51 gene rs1801320 polymorphism may contribute to prostate cancer susceptibility in Poland. Maria Nowacka-Zawisza, Ewelina Wiśnik, Andrzej Wasilewski, Milena Skowrońska, Ewa Forma, Magdalena Bryś, Waldemar Różański, and Wanda M. Krajewska Copyright © 2015 Maria Nowacka-Zawisza et al. All rights reserved. Expected Utility Based Decision Making under -Information and Its Application Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:35:31 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/364512/ Real-world decision relevant information is often partially reliable. The reasons are partial reliability of the source of information, misperceptions, psychological biases, incompetence, and so forth. -numbers based formalization of information (-information) represents a natural language (NL) based value of a variable of interest in line with the related NL based reliability. What is important is that -information not only is the most general representation of real-world imperfect information but also has the highest descriptive power from human perception point of view as compared to fuzzy number. In this study, we present an approach to decision making under -information based on direct computation over -numbers. This approach utilizes expected utility paradigm and is applied to a benchmark decision problem in the field of economics. Rashad R. Aliev, Derar Atallah Talal Mraiziq, and Oleg H. Huseynov Copyright © 2015 Rashad R. Aliev et al. All rights reserved. Novel Virtual User Models of Mild Cognitive Impairment for Simulating Dementia Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:34:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cmmm/2015/358638/ Virtual user modeling research has attempted to address critical issues of human-computer interaction (HCI) such as usability and utility through a large number of analytic, usability-oriented approaches as cognitive models in order to provide users with experiences fitting to their specific needs. However, there is demand for more specific modules embodied in cognitive architecture that will detect abnormal cognitive decline across new synthetic task environments. Also, accessibility evaluation of graphical user interfaces (GUIs) requires considerable effort for enhancing ICT products accessibility for older adults. The main aim of this study is to develop and test virtual user models (VUM) simulating mild cognitive impairment (MCI) through novel specific modules, embodied at cognitive models and defined by estimations of cognitive parameters. Well-established MCI detection tests assessed users’ cognition, elaborated their ability to perform multitasks, and monitored the performance of infotainment related tasks to provide more accurate simulation results on existing conceptual frameworks and enhanced predictive validity in interfaces’ design supported by increased tasks’ complexity to capture a more detailed profile of users’ capabilities and limitations. The final outcome is a more robust cognitive prediction model, accurately fitted to human data to be used for more reliable interfaces’ evaluation through simulation on the basis of virtual models of MCI users. Sofia Segkouli, Ioannis Paliokas, Dimitrios Tzovaras, Thanos Tsakiris, Magda Tsolaki, and Charalampos Karagiannidis Copyright © 2015 Sofia Segkouli et al. All rights reserved. Electrodeposition and Characterization of CuTe and Cu2Te Thin Films Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:33:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/240525/ An electrodeposition method for fabrication of CuTe and Cu2Te thin films is presented. The films’ growth is based on the epitaxial electrodeposition of Cu and Te alternately with different electrochemical parameter, respectively. The deposited thin films were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), field emission scanning electronic microscopy (FE-SEM) with an energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) analyzer, and FTIR studies. The results suggest that the epitaxial electrodeposition is an ideal method for deposition of compound semiconductor films for photoelectric applications. Wenya He, Hanzhi Zhang, Ye Zhang, Mengdi Liu, Xin Zhang, and Fengchun Yang Copyright © 2015 Wenya He et al. All rights reserved. Security Requirements for Multimedia Archives Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:32:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/am/2015/956416/ With the explosive growth of various multimedia contents, digital archives are used to store those contents accordingly. In contrast to the traditional storage systems in which data lifetime is measured in months or years, data lifetime in the archive is measured in decades. This longevity of contents causes new security issues that threat the archive systems. In this paper, we discuss these new security issues in perspective. And we suggest some security requirements for digital archives. Sang Bae Park Copyright © 2015 Sang Bae Park. All rights reserved. Discovering Congested Routes Using Vehicle Trajectories in Road Networks Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:29:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/am/2015/420689/ The popular route recommendation and traffic monitoring over the road networks have become important in the location-based services. The schemes to find out the congested routes were proposed by considering the number of vehicles in a road segment. However, the existing schemes do not consider the features of each road segment such as width, length, and direction in a road network. Furthermore, the existing schemes fail to consider the average moving speed of vehicles. Therefore, they can detect the incorrect density routes. To overcome such problems, we propose a new discovering scheme of congested routes through the analysis of vehicle trajectories in a road network. The proposed scheme divides each road into segments with different width and length in a road network. And then, the congested road segment is detected through the saturation degree of the road segment and the average moving speed of vehicles in the road segment. Finally, we compute the final congested routes by using a clustering scheme. The experimental results have shown that the proposed scheme can efficiently discover the congested routes in the different directions of the roads. Kyoung Soo Bok, He Li, Jong Tae Lim, and Jae Soo Yoo Copyright © 2015 Kyoung Soo Bok et al. All rights reserved. A Facile Strategy for the Functionalization of Boron Nitride Nanotubes with Pd Nanoparticles Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:29:37 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/310214/ A facile in situ fabrication of palladium nanoparticles decorated boron nitride nanotubes (Pd-BNNTs) is described. The decoration of BNNTs was carried out by the self-regulated reduction of palladium chloride (PdCl2) with the aid of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS). During the preparation process, the surfactant SDS plays a dual role: it aids the dispersibility of BNNTs and produces the reductant of CH3(CH2)10CH2OH. Then the CH3(CH2)10CH2OH can reduce Pd2+ to form Pd nanoparticles on the surface of BNNSs. The as-prepared Pd-BNNTs were characterized by field emission scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The results show that the Pd nanocrystalline particles can be deposited onto the BNNTs surface via this simple route. This approach constitutes a basis for the assembly and integration of nanoscale materials onto BNNTs and puts a light on the potential application of the BNNTs in electronic, catalysis, and hydrogen storage fields. Yuanlie Yu, Hua Chen, and Yun Liu Copyright © 2015 Yuanlie Yu et al. All rights reserved. HLA Haplotypes and Genotypes Frequencies in Brazilian Chronic Periodontitis Patients Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:29:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/481656/ Human leukocyte antigens (HLA) have a pivotal role in immune response and may be involved in antigen recognition of periodontal pathogens. However, the associations of HLA with chronic periodontitis (CP) have not been previously studied in the Brazilian population. In an attempt to clarify the issue of genetic predisposition to CP, we examined the distribution of HLA alleles, genotypes, and haplotypes in patients from Southern Brazil. One hundred and eight CP patients and 151 healthy and unrelated controls with age-, gender-, and ethnicity-matched were HLA investigated by polymerase chain reaction with sequence specific oligonucleotides. To exclude smoking as a predisposing factor, statistical analyses were performed in the total sample and in nonsmoking individuals. The significant results showed a positive association of the A∗02/HLA-B∗40 haplotype with CP (total samples: 4.2% versus 0%, = 0.03; nonsmokers: 4.3% versus 0%, = 0.23) and a lower frequency of HLA-B∗15/HLA-DRB1∗11 haplotype in CP compared to controls (total samples: 0.0% versus 4.3%, = 0.04; nonsmokers: 0 versus 5.1%, = 1.0). In conclusion, the HLA-A∗02/B∗40 haplotype may contribute to the development of CP, while HLA-B∗15/DRB1∗11 haplotype might indicate resistance to disease among Brazilians. Emília Ângela Sippert, Cléverson de Oliveira e Silva, Christiane Maria Ayo, Silvia Barbosa Dutra Marques, Jeane Eliete Laguila Visentainer, and Ana Maria Sell Copyright © 2015 Emília Ângela Sippert et al. All rights reserved. Interleukin-1β Modulates Melatonin Secretion in Ovine Pineal Gland: Ex Vivo Study Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:27:38 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/526464/ The study was designed to determine the effect of proinflammatory cytokine, interleukin- (IL-) 1β, on melatonin release and expression enzymes essential for this hormone synthesis: arylalkylamine-N-acetyltransferase (AA-NAT) and hydroxyindole-O-methyltransferase (HIOMT) in ovine pineal gland, taking into account the immune status of animals before sacrificing. Ewes were injected by lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 400 ng/kg) or saline, two hours after sunset during short day period (December). Animals were euthanized three hours after the injection. Next, the pineal glands were collected and divided into four explants. The explants were incubated with (1) medium 199 (control explants), (2) norepinephrine (NE; 10 µM), (3) IL-1β (75 pg/mL), or (4) NE + IL-1β. It was found that IL-1β abolished () NE-induced increase in melatonin release. Treatment with IL-1β also reduced () expression of AA-NAT enzyme compared to NE-treated explants. There was no effect of NE or IL-1β treatment on gene expression of HIOMT; however, the pineal fragments isolated from LPS-treated animals were characterized by elevated () expression of HIOMT mRNA and protein compared to the explants from saline-treated ewes. Our study proves that IL-1β suppresses melatonin secretion and its action seems to be targeted on the reduction of pineal AA-NAT protein expression. A. P. Herman, J. Bochenek, J. Skipor, K. Król, A. Krawczyńska, H. Antushevich, B. Pawlina, E. Marciniak, and D. Tomaszewska-Zaremba Copyright © 2015 A. P. Herman et al. All rights reserved. Preparation and Application of Titanate Nanotubes on Dye Degradation from Aqueous Media by UV Irradiation Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:25:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/680183/ Titanate nanotubes were synthesized by a hydrothermal method using commercial TiO2 powder and then used as a photocatalyst. The titanate nanotubes were synthesized by varying the hydrothermal temperature from 110°C to 180°C. The morphological changes and phase transformation of the TiO2 nanotubes were analyzed by X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The particles’ scattering behavior was investigated by Raman studies, and the surface area of the nanotubes was determined by a Brunauer, Emmett, and Teller (BET) analysis. Comparative studies show that the surface area of nanotubes increases with increasing temperature up to 130°C. The catalytic behavior of the synthesized nanotubes was also studied. The as-prepared titanate nanotubes were applied to methylene blue (MB, an organic dye) degradation in aqueous media by UV irradiation. Approximately 99% of the dye was removed from the aqueous media using 2 g/L titanate nanotube when the initial dye concentration was 9 mg/L. The total irradiation time was 2 h. Rui Liu, Wein-Duo Yang, Hui-Ju Chueng, and Bin-Qiao Ren Copyright © 2015 Rui Liu et al. All rights reserved. Validation of Simulation Models without Knowledge of Parameters Using Differential Algebra Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:25:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2015/793216/ This study deals with the external validation of simulation models using methods from differential algebra. Without any system identification or iterative numerical methods, this approach provides evidence that the equations of a model can represent measured and simulated sets of data. This is very useful to check if a model is, in general, suitable. In addition, the application of this approach to verification of the similarity between the identifiable parameters of two models with different sets of input and output measurements is demonstrated. We present a discussion on how the method can be used to find parameter deviations between any two models. The advantage of this method is its applicability to nonlinear systems as well as its algorithmic nature, which makes it easy to automate. Björn Haffke, Riccardo Möller, Tobias Melz, and Jens Strackeljan Copyright © 2015 Björn Haffke et al. All rights reserved. Modeling Mixed Bicycle Traffic Flow: A Comparative Study on the Cellular Automata Approach Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:24:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2015/420581/ Simulation, as a powerful tool for evaluating transportation systems, has been widely used in transportation planning, management, and operations. Most of the simulation models are focused on motorized vehicles, and the modeling of nonmotorized vehicles is ignored. The cellular automata (CA) model is a very important simulation approach and is widely used for motorized vehicle traffic. The Nagel-Schreckenberg (NS) CA model and the multivalue CA (M-CA) model are two categories of CA model that have been used in previous studies on bicycle traffic flow. This paper improves on these two CA models and also compares their characteristics. It introduces a two-lane NS CA model and M-CA model for both regular bicycles (RBs) and electric bicycles (EBs). In the research for this paper, many cases, featuring different values for the slowing down probability, lane-changing probability, and proportion of EBs, were simulated, while the fundamental diagrams and capacities of the proposed models were analyzed and compared between the two models. Field data were collected for the evaluation of the two models. The results show that the M-CA model exhibits more stable performance than the two-lane NS model and provides results that are closer to real bicycle traffic. Dan Zhou, Sheng Jin, Dongfang Ma, and Dianhai Wang Copyright © 2015 Dan Zhou et al. All rights reserved. Hereditary Angioedema and Gastrointestinal Complications: An Extensive Review of the Literature Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:23:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crii/2015/925861/ Hereditary Angioedema (HAE) is a rare autosomal dominant (AD) disease characterized by deficient (type 1) or nonfunctional (type 2) C1 inhibitor protein. The disorder is associated with episodes of angioedema of the face, larynx, lips, abdomen, or extremities. The angioedema is caused by the activation of the kallikrein-kinin system that leads to the release of vasoactive peptides, followed by edema, which in severe cases can be life threatening. The disease is usually not diagnosed until late adolescence and patients tend to have frequent episodes that can be severely impairing and have a high incidence of morbidity. Gastrointestinal involvement represents up to 80% of clinical presentations that are commonly confused with other gastrointestinal disorders such as appendicitis, cholecystitis, pancreatitis, and ischemic bower. We present a case of an HAE attack presenting as colonic intussusception managed conservatively with a C1 esterase inhibitor. Very few cases have been reported in the literature of HAE presentation in this manner, and there are no reports of any nonsurgical management of these cases. Napoleon Patel, Lisbet D. Suarez, Sakshi Kapur, and Leonard Bielory Copyright © 2015 Napoleon Patel et al. All rights reserved. Identifying and Assessing Interesting Subgroups in a Heterogeneous Population Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:21:57 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/462549/ Biological heterogeneity is common in many diseases and it is often the reason for therapeutic failures. Thus, there is great interest in classifying a disease into subtypes that have clinical significance in terms of prognosis or therapy response. One of the most popular methods to uncover unrecognized subtypes is cluster analysis. However, classical clustering methods such as k-means clustering or hierarchical clustering are not guaranteed to produce clinically interesting subtypes. This could be because the main statistical variability—the basis of cluster generation—is dominated by genes not associated with the clinical phenotype of interest. Furthermore, a strong prognostic factor might be relevant for a certain subgroup but not for the whole population; thus an analysis of the whole sample may not reveal this prognostic factor. To address these problems we investigate methods to identify and assess clinically interesting subgroups in a heterogeneous population. The identification step uses a clustering algorithm and to assess significance we use a false discovery rate- (FDR-) based measure. Under the heterogeneity condition the standard FDR estimate is shown to overestimate the true FDR value, but this is remedied by an improved FDR estimation procedure. As illustrations, two real data examples from gene expression studies of lung cancer are provided. Woojoo Lee, Andrey Alexeyenko, Maria Pernemalm, Justine Guegan, Philippe Dessen, Vladimir Lazar, Janne Lehtiö, and Yudi Pawitan Copyright © 2015 Woojoo Lee et al. All rights reserved. Some Applications of New Modified -Integral Type Operators Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:20:30 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijmms/2015/874178/ We introduce a new sequence of -integral operators. We show that it is a weighted approximation process in the polynomial space of continuous functions defined on unit interval. Weighted statistical approximation theorem, Korovkin type theorems for fuzzy continuous functions, and an estimate for the rate of convergence for these operators. R. P. Pathak and Shiv Kumar Sahoo Copyright © 2015 R. P. Pathak and Shiv Kumar Sahoo. All rights reserved. A Self-Adaptive Wireless Sensor Network Coverage Method for Intrusion Tolerance Based on Trust Value Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:19:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/js/2015/430456/ The sensor is quite easily attacked or invaded during the process of the node coverage optimization. It is a great challenge to make sure that the wireless sensor network could still carry out a secure communication and reliable coverage under the condition of being attacked. Therefore, this paper proposes a network coverage method for intrusion tolerance based on trust value of nodes by combining the trust value model with the reliable coverage optimization. It first estimates trust value of nodes through which to regulate the perception radius and decision-making radius. Furthermore, this algorithm also combines the classical methods of wireless network coverage, such as GSO and PSO, to realize the networks coverage of invasive tolerant sensor. After comparing with the conventional single cover mechanism, it can improve the security and coverage rate of network under the condition of invasion. The simulation results verify the effectiveness of the algorithm. Zuo Chen, Xue Li, Bing Yang, and Qian Zhang Copyright © 2015 Zuo Chen et al. All rights reserved. The Optimization of Transportation Costs in Logistics Enterprises with Time-Window Constraints Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:18:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2015/365367/ This paper presents a model for solving a multiobjective vehicle routing problem with soft time-window constraints that specify the earliest and latest arrival times of customers. If a customer is serviced before the earliest specified arrival time, extra inventory costs are incurred. If the customer is serviced after the latest arrival time, penalty costs must be paid. Both the total transportation cost and the required fleet size are minimized in this model, which also accounts for the given capacity limitations of each vehicle. The total transportation cost consists of direct transportation costs, extra inventory costs, and penalty costs. This multiobjective optimization is solved by using a modified genetic algorithm approach. The output of the algorithm is a set of optimal solutions that represent the trade-off between total transportation cost and the fleet size required to service customers. The influential impact of these two factors is analyzed through the use of a case study. Qingyou Yan and Qian Zhang Copyright © 2015 Qingyou Yan and Qian Zhang. All rights reserved. A Pest Management Model with Stage Structure and Impulsive State Feedback Control Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:18:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2015/617379/ A pest management model with stage structure and impulsive state feedback control is investigated. We get the sufficient condition for the existence of the order-1 periodic solution by differential equation geometry theory and successor function. Further, we obtain a new judgement method for the stability of the order-1 periodic solution of the semicontinuous systems by referencing the stability analysis for limit cycles of continuous systems, which is different from the previous method of analog of Poincarè criterion. Finally, we analyze numerically the theoretical results obtained. Guoping Pang, Zhiqing Liang, Weijian Xu, Lijie Li, and Gang Fu Copyright © 2015 Guoping Pang et al. All rights reserved. Sibling Death after Being Thrown from Window by Brother with Autism: Defenestration, an Emerging High-Risk Behavior Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:10:38 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crips/2015/463694/ Children diagnosed with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) may have serious behavioral problems such as aggression, self-injury, and violence. However, the literature on ASD either overrules any correlation between aggression and ASD or maintains the fact that the efforts to link them have so far been inconclusive. Although severe forms of violence are extremely rare in children with autism, there are a few cases reported in the literature with significant harm to siblings. We hereby report an 8-year-old boy with ASD who caused the death of his sibling by throwing her out of the window. Shared similarities of all defenestration cases indicate a pattern of high-risk behavior threatening the survival of minors. We recommend precautions against this high-risk behavior in children with ASD. Osman Sabuncuoglu, Mustafa Yasin Irmak, Nagehan Ucok Demir, Duygu Murat, Can Tumba, and Yuksel Yilmaz Copyright © 2015 Osman Sabuncuoglu et al. All rights reserved. Detecting Genetic Interactions for Quantitative Traits Using -Spacing Entropy Measure Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:10:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/523641/ A number of statistical methods for detecting gene-gene interactions have been developed in genetic association studies with binary traits. However, many phenotype measures are intrinsically quantitative and categorizing continuous traits may not always be straightforward and meaningful. Association of gene-gene interactions with an observed distribution of such phenotypes needs to be investigated directly without categorization. Information gain based on entropy measure has previously been successful in identifying genetic associations with binary traits. We extend the usefulness of this information gain by proposing a nonparametric evaluation method of conditional entropy of a quantitative phenotype associated with a given genotype. Hence, the information gain can be obtained for any phenotype distribution. Because any functional form, such as Gaussian, is not assumed for the entire distribution of a trait or a given genotype, this method is expected to be robust enough to be applied to any phenotypic association data. Here, we show its use to successfully identify the main effect, as well as the genetic interactions, associated with a quantitative trait. Jaeyong Yee, Min-Seok Kwon, Seohoon Jin, Taesung Park, and Mira Park Copyright © 2015 Jaeyong Yee et al. All rights reserved. Configuration Transitions of Free Circular DNA System Induced by Nicks Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:09:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/546851/ Nicks have important functions in the biological functions of DNA-mediated systems. However, the configuration transitions of DNA molecules induced by the presence of nicks have not been quantitatively investigated. This study aims to analyze the configuration transitions of free circular DNA system induced by nicks. Using atomic force microscopy, two configuration states were observed in the free circular DNA system with different nick numbers. To understand the transmission of torsional energy among DNA base pairs, we defined the effective length and nicking angle. In the free DNA system, a torsional energy of 233 bp can be completely released by nicks. Based on the experimental and quantitative results, we propose a physical mechanism to explain the configuration transitions of the free circular DNA system induced by nicks. This study and the presented method are very useful in understanding the physical mechanism of nicks in DNA-mediated systems. Chao Ji, Lingyun Zhang, and Pengye Wang Copyright © 2015 Chao Ji et al. All rights reserved. Photocorrosion Mechanism of TiO2-Coated Photoanodes Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:09:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijp/2015/457980/ Atomic layer deposition was used to coat CdS photoanodes with 7 nm thick TiO2 films to protect them from photocorrosion during photoelectrochemical water splitting. Photoelectrochemical measurements indicate that the TiO2 coating does not provide full protection against photocorrosion. The degradation of the film initiates from small pinholes and shows oscillatory behavior that can be explained by an Avrami-type model for photocorrosion that is halfway between 2D and 3D etching. XPS analysis of corroded films indicates that a thin layer of CdS remains present on the surface of the corroded photoanode that is more resilient towards photocorrosion. Arjen Didden, Philipp Hillebrand, Bernard Dam, and Roel van de Krol Copyright © 2015 Arjen Didden et al. All rights reserved. Herb-Partitioned Moxibustion Regulates the TLR2/NF-κB Signaling Pathway in a Rat Model of Ulcerative Colitis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:07:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/949065/ The TLR2/NF-κB signaling pathway plays an important role in the pathomechanism of ulcerative colitis (UC); acupuncture and moxibustion can improve the damage in colonic tissues of UC, but the regulatory mechanism remains unknown. This study observed the effect of moxibustion on the TLR2/NF-κB signaling pathway at the Tianshu (ST25) and Qihai (CV6) acupuncture points in the UC rat. The result shows that TLR2, IRAK1, and IKK-b mRNA and protein levels in the colonic mucosa were significantly higher in the UC rats than in the control rats. Herb-partitioned moxibustion reduced the expression of TLR2, IRAK1, and IKK-b mRNA and proteins in the UC rats. Similarly, the expression of NF-κB was significantly increased and IFN-β and IL-10 were significantly decreased in the colonic mucosa of UC rats, but herb-partitioned moxibustion reduced the expression of IFN-β and upregulating the expression of IFN-β and IL-10 significantly. It indicates that herb-partitioned moxibustion can inhibit the expression of multiple signaling molecules of the TLR2 pathway effectively, and it may modulate the excessive local immune response by inhibiting TLR2 signaling, thereby promoting the repair of damaged colonic mucosa. Xiaomei Wang, Yanan Liu, Hongsheng Dong, Luyi Wu, Xiaoming Feng, Zhigang Zhou, Chen Zhao, Huirong Liu, and Huangan Wu Copyright © 2015 Xiaomei Wang et al. All rights reserved. A Comparative Study on Multifactor Dimensionality Reduction Methods for Detecting Gene-Gene Interactions with the Survival Phenotype Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:06:31 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/671859/ Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have extensively analyzed single SNP effects on a wide variety of common and complex diseases and found many genetic variants associated with diseases. However, there is still a large portion of the genetic variants left unexplained. This missing heritability problem might be due to the analytical strategy that limits analyses to only single SNPs. One of possible approaches to the missing heritability problem is to consider identifying multi-SNP effects or gene-gene interactions. The multifactor dimensionality reduction method has been widely used to detect gene-gene interactions based on the constructive induction by classifying high-dimensional genotype combinations into one-dimensional variable with two attributes of high risk and low risk for the case-control study. Many modifications of MDR have been proposed and also extended to the survival phenotype. In this study, we propose several extensions of MDR for the survival phenotype and compare the proposed extensions with earlier MDR through comprehensive simulation studies. Seungyeoun Lee, Yongkang Kim, Min-Seok Kwon, and Taesung Park Copyright © 2015 Seungyeoun Lee et al. All rights reserved. Mediators, Receptors, and Signalling Pathways in the Anti-Inflammatory and Antihyperalgesic Effects of Acupuncture Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:05:22 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/975632/ Acupuncture has been used for millennia to treat allergic diseases including both intermittent rhinitis and persistent rhinitis. Besides the research on the efficacy and safety of acupuncture treatment for allergic rhinitis, research has also investigated how acupuncture might modulate immune function to exert anti-inflammatory effects. A proposed model has previously hypothesized that acupuncture might downregulate proinflammatory neuropeptides, proinflammatory cytokines, and neurotrophins, modulating transient receptor potential vallinoid (TRPV1), a G-protein coupled receptor which plays a central role in allergic rhinitis. Recent research has been largely supportive of this model. New advances in research include the discovery of a novel cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway activated by acupuncture. A chemokine-mediated proliferation of opioid-containing macrophages in inflamed tissues, in response to acupuncture, has also been demonstrated for the first time. Further research on the complex cross talk between receptors during inflammation is also helping to elucidate the mediators and signalling pathways activated by acupuncture. John L. McDonald, Allan W. Cripps, and Peter K. Smith Copyright © 2015 John L. McDonald et al. All rights reserved. Recycler Reaction for the Government Behavior in Closed-Loop Supply Chain Distribution Network: Based on the System Dynamics Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:04:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2015/206149/ With system dynamics, we establish three-closed-loop supply chain distribution network system model which consists of supplier, manufacturer, two retailers, and products (parts) recycler. We proposed that recycler make reflect for the government policy by adjusting the recycling ratio and recycling delay. We use vensim software to simulate this model and investigate how the products (parts) recyclers behavior influences the loop supply chain distribution system. The result shows that (1) when recyclers respond positively to government policies, recycling will increase the proportion of recyclers. When recyclers respond negatively to government policy making, recycling will reduce the proportion of recyclers. (2) When the recovery percentage of recyclers improves, manufacturers, Retailer 1, and Retailer 2 quantity fluctuations will reduce and the bullwhip effect will diminish. (3) When the proportion of recycled parts recyclers is lowered, manufacturers, Retailer 1, and Retailer 2 inventory fluctuation will increase and the bullwhip effect will be enhanced. (4) When recyclers recycling product delays increased, volatility manufacturers order quantity will rise, but there is little change in the amount of fluctuation of orders of the two retailers. (5) When recycling parts recyclers delay increases, fluctuations in the supplier order quantity will rise, but there is little change in the amount of fluctuation of orders of the two retailers. Xi gang Yuan and Xiao qing Zhang Copyright © 2015 Xi gang Yuan and Xiao qing Zhang. All rights reserved. Interleukin-27 Protects Cardiomyocyte-Like H9c2 Cells against Metabolic Syndrome: Role of STAT3 Signaling Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:01:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/689614/ The present results demonstrated that high glucose (G), salt (S), and cholesterol C (either alone or in combination), as mimicking extracellular changes in metabolic syndrome, damage cardiomyocyte-like H9c2 cells and reduce their viability in a time-dependent manner. However, the effects were greatest when cells were exposed to all three agents (GSC). The mRNA of glycoprotein (gp) 130 and WSX-1, both components of the interleukin (IL)-27 receptor, were present in H9c2 cells. Although mRNA expression was not affected by exogenous treatment with IL-27, the expression of gp130 mRNA (but not that of WSX-1 mRNA) was attenuated by GSC. Treatment of IL-27 to H9c2 cells increased activation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) and protected cells from GSC-induced cytochrome c release and cell damage. The protective effects of IL-27 were abrogated by the STAT3 inhibitor, stattic. The results of the present study clearly demonstrate that the STAT3 pathway triggered by anti-inflammatory IL-27 plays a role in protecting cardiomyocytes against GSC-mediated damage. Wei-Lian Phan, Yu-Tzu Huang, and Ming-Chieh Ma Copyright © 2015 Wei-Lian Phan et al. All rights reserved. On the Estimation of Heritability with Family-Based and Population-Based Samples Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:00:35 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/671349/ For a family-based sample, the phenotypic variance-covariance matrix can be parameterized to include the variance of a polygenic effect that has then been estimated using a variance component analysis. However, with the advent of large-scale genomic data, the genetic relationship matrix (GRM) can be estimated and can be utilized to parameterize the variance of a polygenic effect for population-based samples. Therefore narrow sense heritability, which is both population and trait specific, can be estimated with both population- and family-based samples. In this study we estimate heritability from both family-based and population-based samples, collected in Korea, and the heritability estimates from the pooled samples were, for height, 0.60; body mass index (BMI), 0.32; log-transformed triglycerides (log TG), 0.24; total cholesterol (TCHL), 0.30; high-density lipoprotein (HDL), 0.38; low-density lipoprotein (LDL), 0.29; systolic blood pressure (SBP), 0.23; and diastolic blood pressure (DBP), 0.24. Furthermore, we found differences in how heritability is estimated—in particular the amount of variance attributable to common environment in twins can be substantial—which indicates heritability estimates should be interpreted with caution. Youngdoe Kim, Young Lee, Sungyoung Lee, Nam Hee Kim, Jeongmin Lim, Young Jin Kim, Ji Hee Oh, Haesook Min, Meehee Lee, Hyeon-Jeong Seo, So-Hyun Lee, Joohon Sung, Nam H. Cho, Bong-Jo Kim, Bok-Ghee Han, Robert C. Elston, Sungho Won, and Juyoung Lee Copyright © 2015 Youngdoe Kim et al. All rights reserved. Study on a Mid-Temperature Trough Solar Collector with Multisurface Concentration Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:59:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijp/2015/217031/ A new trough solar concentrator which is composed of multiple reflection surfaces is developed in this paper. The concentrator was analyzed firstly by using optical software. The variation curves of the collecting efficiency affected by tracking error and the deviation angle were given out. It is found that the deviation tolerance for the collector tracking system is about 8 degrees when the receiver is a 90 mm flat. The trough solar concentrators were tested under real weather conditions. The experiment results indicate that, the new solar concentrator was validated to have relative good collecting efficiency, which can be more than 45 percent when it operated in more 145°C. It also has the characteristics of rdust, wind, and snow resistance and low tracking precision requirements. Zhengliang Li, Mingxian Chen, Husheng Meng, Zehui Chang, and Hongfei Zheng Copyright © 2015 Zhengliang Li et al. All rights reserved. MicroRNAs: Novel Players in the Dialogue between Pancreatic Islets and Immune System in Autoimmune Diabetes Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:53:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/749734/ MicroRNAs are small noncoding RNA molecules that regulate gene expression in all cell types. Therefore, these tiny noncoding RNA molecules are involved in a wide range of biological processes, exerting functional effects at cellular, tissue, and organ level. In pancreatic islets of Langerhans, including beta-cells, microRNAs are involved in cell differentiation as well as in insulin secretion, while in immune cells they have been shown to play pivotal roles in development, activation, and response to antigens. Indeed, it is not surprising that microRNA alterations can lead to the development of several diseases, including type 1 diabetes (T1D). Type 1 diabetes is the result of a selective autoimmune destruction of insulin-producing beta-cells, characterized by islet inflammation (insulitis), which leads to chronic hyperglycemia. Given the growing importance of microRNA in the pathophysiology of T1D, the aim of this review is to summarize the most recent data on the potential involvement of microRNAs in autoimmune diabetes. Specifically, we will focus on three different aspects: (i) microRNAs as regulators of immune homeostasis in autoimmune diabetes; (ii) microRNA expression in pancreatic islet inflammation; (iii) microRNAs as players in the dialogue between the immune system and pancreatic endocrine cells. Giuliana Ventriglia, Laura Nigi, Guido Sebastiani, and Francesco Dotta Copyright © 2015 Giuliana Ventriglia et al. All rights reserved. Study on Strengthening Plan of Safety Network CCTV Monitoring by Steganography and User Authentication Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:52:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/am/2015/960416/ Recently, as the utilization of CCTV (closed circuit television) is emerging as an issue, the studies on CCTV are receiving much attention. Accordingly, due to the development of CCTV, CCTV has IP addresses and is connected to network; it is exposed to many threats on the existing web environment. In this paper, steganography is utilized to confirm the Data Masquerading and Data Modification and, in addition, to strengthen the security; the user information is protected based on PKI (public key infrastructure), SN (serial number), and R value (random number) attributed at the time of login and the user authentication protocol to block nonauthorized access of malicious user in network CCTV environment was proposed. This paper should be appropriate for utilization of user infringement-related CCTV where user information protection-related technology is not applied for CCTV in the future. Jung-oh Park and Sanggeun Kim Copyright © 2015 Jung-oh Park and Sanggeun Kim. All rights reserved. Numerical and Experimental Study on Energy Performance of Photovoltaic-Heat Pipe Solar Collector in Northern China Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:51:47 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijp/2015/321829/ Several studies have found that the decrease of photovoltaic (PV) cell temperature would increase the solar-to-electricity conversion efficiency. Water type PV/thermal (PV/T) system was a good choice but it could become freezing in cold areas of Northern China. This paper proposed a simple combination of common-used PV panel and heat pipe, called PV-heat pipe (PV-HP) solar collector, for both electrical and thermal energy generation. A simplified one-dimensional steady state model was developed to study the electrical and thermal performance of the PV-HP solar collector under different solar radiations, water flow rates, and water temperatures at the inlet of manifold. A testing rig was conducted to verify the model and the testing data matched very well with the simulation values. The results indicated that the thermal efficiency could be minus in the afternoon. The thermal and electrical efficiencies decreased linearly as the inlet water temperature and water flow rate increased. The thermal efficiency increased while the electrical efficiency decreased linearly as the solar radiation increased. Hongbing Chen, Xilin Chen, Sai Chu, Lei Zhang, and Yaxuan Xiong Copyright © 2015 Hongbing Chen et al. All rights reserved. Fabrication and Evaluation of Polycaprolactone/Gelatin-Based Electrospun Nanofibers with Antibacterial Properties Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:50:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/970542/ Nanofibrous scaffolds were fabricated through blending of a synthetic polymer, polycaprolactone (PCL), and a natural polymer, gelatin (GE), using an electrospinning technique. Processing and solution parameters were optimized to determine the suitable properties of PCL/GE-based nanofibers. Several characterizations were conducted to determine surface morphology by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), wettability using water contact angle measurement, and chemical bonding analysis using attenuated total reflectance (ATR) of PCL/GE-based nanofibers. Experimental results showed that 14% (w/v) PCL/GE with a flow rate of 0.5 mL/h and 18 kV demonstrated suitable properties. This nanofiber was then further investigated for its in vitro degradation, drug loading (using a model drug, tetracycline hydrochloride), and antibacterial testing (using zone inhibition method). Lor Huai Chong, Mim Mim Lim, and Naznin Sultana Copyright © 2015 Lor Huai Chong et al. All rights reserved. Thermal Infrared Imaging-Based Computational Psychophysiology for Psychometrics Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:48:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cmmm/2015/984353/ Thermal infrared imaging has been proposed as a potential system for the computational assessment of human autonomic nervous activity and psychophysiological states in a contactless and noninvasive way. Through bioheat modeling of facial thermal imagery, several vital signs can be extracted, including localized blood perfusion, cardiac pulse, breath rate, and sudomotor response, since all these parameters impact the cutaneous temperature. The obtained physiological information could then be used to draw inferences about a variety of psychophysiological or affective states, as proved by the increasing number of psychophysiological studies using thermal infrared imaging. This paper presents therefore a review of the principal achievements of thermal infrared imaging in computational physiology with regard to its capability of monitoring psychophysiological activity. Daniela Cardone, Paola Pinti, and Arcangelo Merla Copyright © 2015 Daniela Cardone et al. All rights reserved. Data Collection for Time-Critical Applications in the Low-Duty-Cycle Wireless Sensor Networks Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:47:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2015/931913/ In low-duty-cycle wireless sensor networks, wireless nodes usually have two states: active state and dormant state. The necessary condition for a successful wireless transmission is that both the sender and the receiver are awake. In this paper, we study the problem: How fast can raw data be collected from all source nodes to a sink in low-duty-cycle WSNs with general topology? Both the lower and upper tight bounds are given for this problem. We use TDMA scheduling on the same frequency channel and present centralized and distributed fast data collection algorithms to find an optimal solution in polynomial time when no interfering links happen. If interfering links happen, multichannel scheduling is introduced to eliminate them. We next propose a novel Receiver-based Channel and Time Scheduling (RCTS) algorithm to obtain the optimal solution. Based on real trace, extensive simulations are conducted and the results show that the proposed RCTS algorithm is significantly more efficient than the link schedule on one channel and achieves the lower bound. We also evaluate the proposed data collection algorithms and find that RCTS is time-efficient and suffices to eliminate most of the interference in both indoor and outdoor environment for moderate size networks. Shuyun Luo, Yongmei Sun, and Yuefeng Ji Copyright © 2015 Shuyun Luo et al. All rights reserved. Computational Psychometrics in Communication and Implications in Decision Making Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:46:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cmmm/2015/985032/ Recent investigations emphasized the role of communication features on behavioral trust and reciprocity in economic decision making but no studies have been focused on the effect of communication on affective states in such a context. Thanks to advanced methods of computational psychometrics, in this study, affective states were deeply examined using simultaneous and synchronized recordings of gazes and psychophysiological signals in 28 female students during an investment game. Results showed that participants experienced different affective states according to the type of communication (personal versus impersonal). In particular, participants involved in personal communication felt more relaxed than participants involved in impersonal communication. Moreover, personal communication influenced reciprocity and participants’ perceptions about trust and reciprocity. Findings were interpreted in the light of the Arousal/Valence Model and self-disclosure process. Pietro Cipresso, Daniela Villani, Claudia Repetto, Lucia Bosone, Anna Balgera, Maurizio Mauri, Marco Villamira, Alessandro Antonietti, and Giuseppe Riva Copyright © 2015 Pietro Cipresso et al. All rights reserved. Fast Differential Analysis of Propolis Using Surface Desorption Atmospheric Pressure Chemical Ionization Mass Spectrometry Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:35:02 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijac/2015/176475/ Mass spectral fingerprints of 24 raw propolis samples, including 23 from China and one from the United States, were directly obtained using surface desorption atmospheric pressure chemical ionization mass spectrometry (SDAPCI-MS) without sample pretreatment. Under the optimized experimental conditions, the most abundant signals were detected in the mass ranges of 70 to 500 m/z and 200 to 350 m/z, respectively. Principal component analyses (PCA) for the two mass ranges showed similarities in that the colors had a significant correlation with the first two PCs; in contrast there was no correlation with the climatic zones from which the samples originated. Analytes such as chrysin, pinocembrin, and quercetin were detected and identified using multiple stage mass spectrometry within 3 min. Therefore, SDAPCI-MS can be used for rapid and reliable high-throughput analysis of propolis. Xue-yong Huang, Xia-li Guo, Huo-lin Luo, Xiao-wei Fang, Teng-gao Zhu, Xing-lei Zhang, Huan-wen Chen, and Li-ping Luo Copyright © 2015 Xue-yong Huang et al. All rights reserved. Effects of Chlorinated Polypropylene on the Conformation of Polypropylene in Polypropylene/Chlorinated Polypropylene/Polyaniline Composites Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:20:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/317813/ We investigated the changes in the conformation and crystalline structure of polypropylene (PP) using a combination of Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), wide-angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD), and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) based on PP/chlorinated PP (CPP)/polyaniline (PANI) composites. The DSC heating thermograms and WAXD patterns of the PP/CPP/PANI composites showed that the β-crystal was affected greatly by the CPP content. Characterization of the specific regularity in the infrared band variation showed that the conformational orders of the helical sequences in PP exhibited major changes that depended on the CPP content. Initially, the intensity ratio of increased with the CPP concentration and reached its maximum level when the CPP content was <13.22% before decreasing as the CPP content increased further. The effect of increased temperature on the conformation of PP was studied by in situ FTIR. Initially, the intensity ratio of decreased slowly with increasing the temperature up to 105°C before decreasing sharply with further increases in temperature and then decreasing slowly again when the temperature was higher than 128°C. Jianjun Chen, Yueyue Jia, Zhiye Zhang, Xinlong Wang, and Lin Yang Copyright © 2015 Jianjun Chen et al. All rights reserved. Inflammatory Bowel Disease: An Overview of Immune Mechanisms and Biological Treatments Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:20:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/493012/ Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) are characterized by chronic inflammation of the intestinal tract associated with an imbalance of the intestinal microbiota. Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) are the most widely known types of IBD and have been the focus of attention due to their increasing incidence. Recent studies have pointed out genes associated with IBD susceptibility that, together with environment factors, may contribute to the outcome of the disease. In ulcerative colitis, there are several therapies available, depending on the stage of the disease. Aminosalicylates, corticosteroids, and cyclosporine are used to treat mild, moderate, and severe disease, respectively. In Crohn’s disease, drug choices are dependent on both location and behavior of the disease. Nowadays, advances in treatments for IBD have included biological therapies, based mainly on monoclonal antibodies or fusion proteins, such as anti-TNF drugs. Notwithstanding the high cost involved, these biological therapies show a high index of remission, enabling a significant reduction in cases of surgery and hospitalization. Furthermore, migration inhibitors and new cytokine blockers are also a promising alternative for treating patients with IBD. In this review, an analysis of literature data on biological treatments for IBD is approached, with the main focus on therapies based on emerging recombinant biomolecules. Bruno Rafael Ramos de Mattos, Maellin Pereira Gracindo Garcia, Julia Bier Nogueira, Lisiery Negrini Paiatto, Cassia Galdino Albuquerque, Caique Lopes Souza, Luís Gustavo Romani Fernandes, Wirla Maria da Silva Cunha Tamashiro, and Patricia Ucelli Simioni Copyright © 2015 Bruno Rafael Ramos de Mattos et al. All rights reserved. Mesenchymal Stem Cells for Cardiac Regenerative Therapy: Optimization of Cell Differentiation Strategy Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:19:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2015/524756/ With the high mortality rate, coronary heart disease (CHD) has currently become a major life-threatening disease. The main pathological change of myocardial infarction (MI) is the induction of myocardial necrosis in infarction area which finally causes heart failure. Conventional treatments cannot regenerate the functional cell efficiently. Recent researches suggest that mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are able to differentiate into multiple lineages, including cardiomyocyte-like cells in vitro and in vivo, and they have been used for the treatment of MI to repair the injured myocardium and improve cardiac function. In this review, we will focus on the recent progress on MSCs derived cardiomyocytes for cardiac regeneration after MI. Han Shen, Ying Wang, Zhiwei Zhang, Junjie Yang, Shijun Hu, and Zhenya Shen Copyright © 2015 Han Shen et al. All rights reserved. Concordance of Hypermethylated DNA and the Tumor Markers CA 15-3, CEA, and TPA in Serum during Monitoring of Patients with Advanced Breast Cancer Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:18:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/986024/ The serological protein tumor markers CA 15-3, CEA, and TPA are frequently used to monitor tumor burden among metastatic breast cancer patients. Breast cancer is associated with global DNA hypomethylation and hypermethylation of some promoter regions. No monitoring study has yet investigated the interrelationship between protein tumor markers, the global DNA hypomethylation, and hypermethylated genes in serum from patients with advanced disease. Twenty-nine patients with histologically proven advanced breast cancer received first-line chemotherapy with epirubicin. Samples were collected prior to each treatment and prospectively analyzed for CA 15-3, CEA, and TPA. The same samples were retrospectively analyzed for the concentration of hypermethylated RASSF1A and for global DNA hypomethylation using LINE-1. Among patients with elevated concentrations of the protein markers, concordance could be observed between serial changes of the hypermethylated RASSF1A gene and the protein markers. Among patients with lower concentrations, RASSF1A could only be detected periodically. There was discordance between changes of the hypomethylated LINE-1 as compared to the protein markers. Circulating hypermethylated RASSF1A and protein markers may have similar kinetics during monitoring of tumor burden. Further investigations are needed to determine whether any of the hypermethylated DNA genes may provide predictive information during monitoring. Søren Kristiansen, Lars Mønster Jørgensen, Morten Høgh Hansen, Dorte Nielsen, and György Sölétormos Copyright © 2015 Søren Kristiansen et al. All rights reserved. A Method for Estimating View Transformations from Image Correspondences Based on the Harmony Search Algorithm Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:18:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/434263/ In this paper, a new method for robustly estimating multiple view relations from point correspondences is presented. The approach combines the popular random sampling consensus (RANSAC) algorithm and the evolutionary method harmony search (HS). With this combination, the proposed method adopts a different sampling strategy than RANSAC to generate putative solutions. Under the new mechanism, at each iteration, new candidate solutions are built taking into account the quality of the models generated by previous candidate solutions, rather than purely random as it is the case of RANSAC. The rules for the generation of candidate solutions (samples) are motivated by the improvisation process that occurs when a musician searches for a better state of harmony. As a result, the proposed approach can substantially reduce the number of iterations still preserving the robust capabilities of RANSAC. The method is generic and its use is illustrated by the estimation of homographies, considering synthetic and real images. Additionally, in order to demonstrate the performance of the proposed approach within a real engineering application, it is employed to solve the problem of position estimation in a humanoid robot. Experimental results validate the efficiency of the proposed method in terms of accuracy, speed, and robustness. Erik Cuevas and Margarita Díaz Copyright © 2015 Erik Cuevas and Margarita Díaz. All rights reserved. Right Ventricular Dysfunction in Patients Experiencing Cardiotoxicity during Breast Cancer Therapy Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:14:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jo/2015/609194/ Background. Right ventricular (RV) dysfunction during cancer therapy related cardiotoxicity and its prognostic implications have not been examined. Aim. We sought to determine the incidence and prognostic value of RV dysfunction at time of LV defined cardiotoxicity. Methods. We retrospectively identified 30 HER2+ female patients with breast cancer treated with trastuzumab (± anthracycline) who developed cardiotoxicity and had a diagnostic quality transthoracic echocardiography. LV ejection fraction (LVEF), RV fractional area change (RV FAC), and peak systolic longitudinal strain (for both LV and RV) were measured on echocardiograms at the time of cardiotoxicity and during follow-up. Thirty age balanced precancer therapy and HER2+ breast cancer patients were used as controls. Results. In the 30 patients with cardiotoxicity (mean ± SD age 54 ± 12 years) RV FAC was significantly lower (42 ± 7 versus 47 ± 6%, ) compared to controls. RV dysfunction defined by global longitudinal strain (GLS < −20.3%) was seen in 40% (). During follow-up in 16 out of 30 patients (23 ± 15 months), there was persistent LV dysfunction (EF < 55%) in 69% (). Concomitant RV dysfunction at the time of LV cardiotoxicity was associated with reduced recovery of LVEF during follow-up although this was not statistically significant. Conclusion. RV dysfunction at the time of LV cardiotoxicity is frequent in patients with breast cancer receiving trastuzumab therapy. Despite appropriate management, LV dysfunction persisted in the majority at follow-up. The prognostic value of RV dysfunction at the time of cardiotoxicity warrants further investigation. Anna Calleja, Frédéric Poulin, Ciril Khorolsky, Masoud Shariat, Philippe L. Bedard, Eitan Amir, Harry Rakowski, Michael McDonald, Diego Delgado, and Paaladinesh Thavendiranathan Copyright © 2015 Anna Calleja et al. All rights reserved. Survey of Security Technologies on Wireless Sensor Networks Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:13:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/js/2015/842392/ Because of their low cost and adaptability, wireless sensor networks are widely used in civil, military, and commercial fields and other fields. However, since the sensor node in the calculation of the capacity, battery capacity, and storage capacity are restricted by the limitations and inherent characteristics of the sensor networks, compared to traditional networks, which makes wireless sensor networks face more security threats. This paper summarized research progress of sensor network security issues as three aspects, key management, authentication, and secure routing, analyzed and commented on these results advantages and disadvantages and pointed out the future direction of the hot research field. Qiuwei Yang, Xiaogang Zhu, Hongjuan Fu, and Xiqiang Che Copyright © 2015 Qiuwei Yang et al. All rights reserved. Vaccination with an Attenuated Ferritin Mutant Protects Mice against Virulent Mycobacterium tuberculosis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:12:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2015/385402/ Mycobacterium tuberculosis the causative agent of tuberculosis affects millions of people worldwide. New tools for treatment and prevention of tuberculosis are urgently needed. We previously showed that a ferritin (bfrB) mutant of M. tuberculosis has altered iron homeostasis and increased sensitivity to antibiotics and to microbicidal effectors produced by activated macrophages. Most importantly, M. tuberculosis lacking BfrB is strongly attenuated in mice, especially, during the chronic phase of infection. In this study, we examined whether immunization with a bfrB mutant could confer protection against subsequent infection with virulent M. tuberculosis in a mouse model. The results show that the protection elicited by immunization with the bfrB mutant is comparable to BCG vaccination with respect to reduction of bacterial burden. However, significant distinctions in the disease pathology and host genome-wide lung transcriptome suggest improved containment of Mtb infection in animals vaccinated with the bfrB mutant, compared to BCG. We found that downmodulation of inflammatory response and enhanced fibrosis, compared to BCG vaccination, is associated with the protective response elicited by the bfrB mutant. Selvakumar Subbian, Ruchi Pandey, Patricia Soteropoulos, and G. Marcela Rodriguez Copyright © 2015 Selvakumar Subbian et al. All rights reserved. Orthotopic Heart Transplantation and Mechanical Circulatory Support in Cancer Survivors: Challenges and Outcomes Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:12:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jo/2015/232607/ Chemotherapy-induced cardiomyopathy (CCMP) is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality. Compared to cardiomyopathy due to other causes, anthracycline-induced cardiomyopathy is associated with a worse survival. As cancer survival improves, patients with CCMP can be expected to comprise a significant proportion of patients who may require advanced therapies such as inotropic support, cardiac transplantation, or left ventricular assist device (LVAD). Distinct outcomes related to advanced therapies for end-stage heart failure in this patient population may arise due to unique demographic characteristics and comorbidities. We review recent literature regarding the characteristics of patients who have survived cancer undergoing orthotopic heart transplantation and mechanical circulatory support for end-stage heart failure. The challenges and outcomes of advanced therapies for heart failure related specifically to anthracycline-induced cardiomyopathy are emphasized. Nina Ghosh and John Hilton Copyright © 2015 Nina Ghosh and John Hilton. All rights reserved. Effect of Environmental Chemical Stress on Nuclear Noncoding RNA Involved in Epigenetic Control Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:11:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/761703/ In the last decade the role of noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) emerges not only as key elements of posttranscriptional gene silencing, but also as important players of epigenetic regulation. New kind and new functions of ncRNAs are continuously discovered and one of their most important roles is the mediation of environmental signals, both physical and chemical. The activity of cytoplasmic short ncRNA is extensively studied, in spite of the fact that their function and role in the nuclear compartment are not yet completely unraveled. Cellular nucleus contains a multiplicity of long and short ncRNAs controlling at different levels transcriptional and epigenetic processes. In addition, some ncRNAs are involved in RNA editing and quality control. In this paper we review the existing knowledge dealing with how chemical stressors can influence the functionality of short nuclear ncRNAs. Furthermore, we perform bioinformatics analyses indicating that chemical environmental stressors not only induce DNA damage but also influence the mechanism of ncRNAs production and control. Patrizio Arrigo and Alessandra Pulliero Copyright © 2015 Patrizio Arrigo and Alessandra Pulliero. All rights reserved. Modifications of Human Subcutaneous ADMSC after PPARγ Activation and Cold Exposition Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:10:35 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2015/196348/ Mesenchymal stem cells are a diverse population of cells with a wide range of potential therapeutic applications. In particular, cells from adipose tissue have the distinction of being easily accessible and contain a lot of stem cells. ADMSCs can be induced to mature adipocyte and activate the energy expenditure upon treatment with total PPARγ agonists. Additionally these cells may respond to cold by activating the thermogenic program. In the present study, we determined the effect of partial agonism of PPARγ and temperature reduction on phenotype and metabolic activity of ADMSCs from human adipose subcutaneous tissue. We found that adipocytes differentiated with total and partial agonists of PPARγ and exposed to 31°C are able to respond to cold significantly increasing the expression of thermogenic proteins such as UCP1, PGC1α, and CITED1, a marker of beige phenotype. Additionally, we found that adipocyte cells subjected to cold had a reduction in triglycerides and increased adiponectin levels. These data confirm the promising role of ADMSCs as a treatment for metabolic disorders since it is possible to induce them to mature adipocytes and modulate their phenotype toward a cell with high-energy expenditure and metabolic beneficial effect. Diana Vargas, Wendy Rosales, and Fernando Lizcano Copyright © 2015 Diana Vargas et al. All rights reserved. Association between Genetic Polymorphisms of DNA Repair Genes and Chromosomal Damage for 1,3-Butadiene-Exposed Workers in a Matched Study in China Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:09:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/234675/ The aim of the study was to examine the association between polymorphisms of DNA repair genes and chromosomal damage of 1,3-butadiene- (BD-) exposed workers. The study was conducted in 45 pairs of occupationally exposed workers in a BD product workshop and matched control workers in an administrative office and a circulatory water workshop in China. Newly developed biomarkers (micronuclei, MNi; nucleoplasmic bridges, NPBs; nuclear buds, NBUDs) in the cytokinesis-blocked micronucleus (CBMN) cytome assay were adopted to detect chromosomal damage. PCR and PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) are adopted to analyze polymorphisms of DNA repair genes, such as X-ray repair cross-complementing Group 1 (XRCC1), O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT), poly (adenosine diphosphate-ribose) polymerases (ADPRT), and apurinic/apyrimidinic endonucleases (APE1). The BD-exposed workers exhibited increased frequencies of MNi and NPBs when compared to subjects in the control group. The results also show that the BD-exposed workers carrying XRCC1 diplotypes TCGA-CCGG () (, 95% CI: 1.03–4.28) and TCGG-TCGA () (, 95% CI: 0.76–2.65) had statistically higher NBUD frequencies than those who carried diplotype TCGG-TCGG (). Our study suggests that polymorphisms of XRCC1 gene may influence chromosomal damage in BD-exposed workers. Menglong Xiang, Lei Sun, Xiaomei Dong, Huan Yang, Wen-bin Liu, Niya Zhou, Xue Han, Ziyuan Zhou, Zhihong Cui, Jing-yi Liu, Jia Cao, and Lin Ao Copyright © 2015 Menglong Xiang et al. All rights reserved. Accurately Identifying New QoS Violation Driven by High-Distributed Low-Rate Denial of Service Attacks Based on Multiple Observed Features Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:09:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/js/2015/465402/ We propose using multiple observed features of network traffic to identify new high-distributed low-rate quality of services (QoS) violation so that detection accuracy may be further improved. For the multiple observed features, we choose F feature in TCP packet header as a microscopic feature and, P feature and D feature of network traffic as macroscopic features. Based on these features, we establish multistream fused hidden Markov model (MF-HMM) to detect stealthy low-rate denial of service (LDoS) attacks hidden in legitimate network background traffic. In addition, the threshold value is dynamically adjusted by using Kaufman algorithm. Our experiments show that the additive effect of combining multiple features effectively reduces the false-positive rate. The average detection rate of MF-HMM results in a significant 23.39% and 44.64% improvement over typical power spectrum density (PSD) algorithm and nonparametric cumulative sum (CUSUM) algorithm. Jian Kang, Mei Yang, and Junyao Zhang Copyright © 2015 Jian Kang et al. All rights reserved. Micro- to Nanoscale Morphologies and Chemical Components of Soils Investigated by SEM-EDS for Forensic Science Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:09:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/734560/ As a kind of microscale physical evidence, soil can provide significant assistance to forensic science. In this study, soil samples that were collected from eighteen different regions of Shandong Province, China, were examined by scanning electron microscope-energy dispersive spectrometer (SEM-EDS). The homogeneities and diameters of the samples were evaluated by SEM which has been applied to observe objects at nanoscale. The soil from Jiaxiang, a city in Eastern Shandong Province, showed the maximal particle diameter and the sample from Liaocheng, another Eastern city in Shandong Province, showed the best homogeneity. The mass fraction and molar percentages of nine inorganic elements in all samples were analyzed by EDS. Oxygen and silicon showed the highest content in all of these samples. However, different samples exhibited their own characteristic elements, which can help to discriminate them from other samples. In this regard, SEM-EDS-based homogeneity and element analysis might be used as a fast and reliable technique for the soil criminological analysis in Shandong Province. Yingzi Liu, Yumei Li, Qiang Li, Jie Bao, Dakui Hao, Zhiwen Zhao, Dongxue Song, Jiajia Wang, and Zhiheng Hu Copyright © 2015 Yingzi Liu et al. All rights reserved. Improved Production of Sublancin 168 Biosynthesized by Bacillus subtilis 168 Using Chemometric Methodology and Statistical Experimental Designs Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:05:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/687915/ Sublancin 168, as a distinct S-linked antimicrobial glycopeptide produced by Bacillus subtilis 168, is effective in killing specific microorganisms. However, the reported yield of sublancin 168 is at a low level of no more than 60 mg from 1 L fermentation culture of B. subtilis 168 by using the method in the literature. Thus optimization of fermentation condition for efficiently producing sublancin 168 is required. Here, Box-Behnken design was used to determine the optimal combination of three fermentation parameters, namely, corn powder, soybean meal, and temperature that were identified previously by Plackett-Burman design and the steepest ascent experiment. Subsequently, based on the response surface methodology, the quadratic regression model for optimally producing sublancin 168 was developed, and the optimal combination of culture parameters for maximum sublancin 168 production of 129.72 mg/L was determined as corn powder 28.49 g/L, soybean meal 22.99 g/L, and incubation temperature 30.8°C. The results showed that sublancin 168 production obtained experimentally was coincident with predicted value of 125.88 mg/L, and the developed model was proved to be adequate, and the aim of efficiently producing sublancin 168 was achieved. Shengyue Ji, Weili Li, Haiyun Xin, Shan Wang, and Binyun Cao Copyright © 2015 Shengyue Ji et al. All rights reserved. Response to Infliximab in Crohn’s Disease: Genetic Analysis Supporting Expression Profile Mon, 03 Aug 2015 12:05:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/318207/ Substantial proportion of Crohn’s disease (CD) patients shows no response or a limited response to treatment with infliximab (IFX) and to identify biomarkers of response would be of great clinical and economic benefit. The expression profile of five genes (S100A8-S100A9, G0S2, TNFAIP6, and IL11) reportedly predicted response to IFX and we aimed at investigating their etiologic role through genetic association analysis. Patients with active CD (350) who received at least three induction doses of IFX were included and classified according to IFX response. A tagging strategy was used to select genetic polymorphisms that cover the variability present in the chromosomal regions encoding the identified genes with altered expression. Following genotyping, differences between responders and nonresponders to IFX were observed in haplotypes of the studied regions: S100A8-S100A9 (rs11205276G/rs3014866C/rs724781C/rs3006488A; ); G0S2 (rs4844486A/rs1473683T; ); TNFAIP6 (rs11677200C/rs2342910A/rs3755480G/rs10432475A; ); and IL11 (rs1126760C/rs1042506G; ). These differences were amplified in patients with colonic and ileocolonic location for all but the TNFAIP6 haplotype, which evidenced significant difference in ileal CD patients. Our results support the role of the reported expression signature as predictive of anti-TNF outcome in CD patients and suggest an etiological role of those top-five genes in the IFX response pathway. Luz María Medrano, Carlos Taxonera, Cristina González-Artacho, Virginia Pascual, María Gómez-García, Manuel Barreiro-de Acosta, José L. Pérez-Calle, Fernando Bermejo, Antonio López-Sanromán, Dolores Martín Arranz, Javier P. Gisbert, Juan Luis Mendoza, Javier Martín, Concepción Núñez, and Elena Urcelay Copyright © 2015 Luz María Medrano et al. All rights reserved. Laser Raman Spectroscopy with Different Excitation Sources and Extension to Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:57:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/895317/ A dispersive Raman spectrometer was used with three different excitation sources (Argon-ion, He-Ne, and Diode lasers operating at 514.5 nm, 633 nm, and 782 nm, resp.). The system was employed to a variety of Raman active compounds. Many of the compounds exhibit very strong fluorescence while being excited with a laser emitting at UV-VIS region, hereby imposing severe limitation to the detection efficiency of the particular Raman system. The Raman system with variable excitation laser sources provided us with a desired flexibility toward the suppression of unwanted fluorescence signal. With this Raman system, we could detect and specify the different vibrational modes of various hazardous organic compounds and some typical dyes (both fluorescent and nonfluorescent). We then compared those results with the ones reported in literature and found the deviation within the range of ±2 cm−1, which indicates reasonable accuracy and usability of the Raman system. Then, the surface enhancement technique of Raman spectrum was employed to the present system. To this end, we used chemically prepared colloidal suspension of silver nanoparticles as substrate and Rhodamine 6G as probe. We could observe significant enhancement of Raman signal from Rhodamine 6G using the colloidal solution of silver nanoparticles the average magnitude of which is estimated to be 103. Md. Wahadoszamen, Arifur Rahaman, Nabil Md. Rakinul Hoque, Aminul I Talukder, Kazi Monowar Abedin, and A. F. M. Yusuf Haider Copyright © 2015 Md. Wahadoszamen et al. All rights reserved. Two Rare Cases of Hepatocellular Carcinoma after Kasai Procedure for Biliary Atresia: A Recommendation for Close Follow-Up Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:56:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cripa/2015/982679/ The instigation of the Kasai procedure in infants who are born with biliary atresia has led to increased survival in this population for over half a century. The many complications that arise as a result of biliary atresia led to an early death for most patients. However, the Kasai procedure is not without its own impediments. Among them is the development of hepatocellular carcinoma. We present two cases of hepatocellular carcinoma, after Kasai procedure, from two different age groups, as a recommendation that these patients should be even more closely monitored. Furthermore, if they are in need of transplant, we recommend that the explanted livers be carefully examined, as the tumor may not have been diagnosed preoperatively. Alicia C. Hirzel, Beatrice Madrazo, and Claudia P. Rojas Copyright © 2015 Alicia C. Hirzel et al. All rights reserved. Improving Hyperspectral Image Classification Method for Fine Land Use Assessment Application Using Semisupervised Machine Learning Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:56:33 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/969185/ Study on land use/cover can reflect changing rules of population, economy, agricultural structure adjustment, policy, and traffic and provide better service for the regional economic development and urban evolution. The study on fine land use/cover assessment using hyperspectral image classification is a focal growing area in many fields. Semisupervised learning method which takes a large number of unlabeled samples and minority labeled samples, improving classification and predicting the accuracy effectively, has been a new research direction. In this paper, we proposed improving fine land use/cover assessment based on semisupervised hyperspectral classification method. The test analysis of study area showed that the advantages of semisupervised classification method could improve the high precision overall classification and objective assessment of land use/cover results. Chunyang Wang, Zengzhang Guo, Shuangting Wang, Liping Wang, and Chao Ma Copyright © 2015 Chunyang Wang et al. All rights reserved. Synthesis and Catalytic Performances of a Novel Zn-MOF Catalyst Bearing Nickel Chelating Diimine Carboxylate Ligands for Ethylene Oligomerization Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:55:33 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/310162/ A novel Zn-MOF[Zn3(OH)2L2] was synthesized from dicarboxylate ligands with diimine groups (1,4-bis(4-CO2HC6H4)-2,3-dimethyl-1,4-diazabutadiene). The physicochemical properties of the material were characterized by a series of technologies including XRD, SEM, and ICP. In order to adapt to the ethylene oligomerization process, a catalyst (denoted as Cat.A) possessing active Ni2+ centers was prepared by a postsynthetic treatment method using dichloride nickel as a nickel source in this work. For comparison, α-diimine ligands with/without dicarboxylic acid groups reacted with dichloride nickel to obtain homogenous Cat.B and Cat.C, respectively. The effects of reaction parameters, including n(Al)/n(Ni), temperature, and pressure on the oligomerization activities and oligomers distribution were investigated. The results demonstrated that all of catalysts used with diethylaluminum chloride were active for the ethylene oligomerization. Among them, Cat.A and Cat.B showed higher catalytic activities and higher selectivities to low-carbon α-olefins at atmospheric pressure. The Cat.A exhibited the optimal catalytic activity [6.7 × 105 g/(mol·Ni·h·atm)] for C4 (91.8%) under the conditions of Al/Ni = 1500, P = 1.0 atm, T = 20°C. In addition, Cat.A and Cat.B presented large amount of ethylene polymer, while Cat.C had a higher catalytic activity of ethylene oligomerization at high pressure. Suyan Liu, Ying Zhang, Quan Huo, Sasa He, and Yang Han Copyright © 2015 Suyan Liu et al. All rights reserved. Research on Control-Oriented Modeling for Turbocharged SI and DI Gasoline Engines Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:52:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/765083/ In order to analyze system performance and develop model-based control algorithms for turbocharged spark ignition and direct injection (SIDI) gasoline engines, a control oriented mean value model is developed and validated. The model is constructed based on theoretical analysis for the different components, including the compressor, turbine, air filter, intercooler, throttle, manifold, and combustion chamber. Compressor mass flow and efficiency are modeled as parameterized functions. A standard nozzle model is used to approximate the mass flow through the turbine, and the turbine efficiency is modeled as a function of blade speed ratio (BSR). The air filter is modeled as a tube for capturing its pressure drop feature. The effectiveness number of transfer units (NTU) modeling method is utilized for the intercooler. The throttle model consists of the standard nozzle model with an effective area regressed to throttle position. Manifolds are modeled for their dynamically varying pressure state. For the cylinder, the air mass flow into cylinders, fuel mass, torque, and exhaust temperature are modeled. Compared to the conventional lookup table approach, transient dynamics error can be improved significantly through using the model from this work. Feitie Zhang, Shoudao Huang, Xuelong Li, and Fengjin Guan Copyright © 2015 Feitie Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Systemic Autoimmune, Rheumatic Diseases and Coinciding Psoriasis: Data from a Large Single-Centre Registry and Review of the Literature Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:50:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/657907/ Psoriasis is a systemic immune-inflammatory disease characterized by chronic or recurrent skin symptoms, psoriatic arthritis, enthesopathy, and uveitis. Psoriasis has recently been published to appear with various autoimmune disorders, but the coexistence has been systematically reviewed by only few studies until now. In the present study, charts and electronic database of 4344 patients with various systemic autoimmune disorders, under regular medical control at our department, were reviewed retrospectively searching for association with psoriasis. Hereby, we demonstrate 25 psoriatic patients coinciding with various systemic autoimmune diseases. The coexistence of psoriasis and autoimmune diseases resulted in the worsening of the clinical outcome of the autoimmune diseases as indicated by higher frequency and dosages of glucocorticoid use, need for biologicals, and other comorbidities. These results suggest common environmental and genetic background as well as therapeutic possibilities in the future. Anna Bazsó, Péter Szodoray, Ágnes Szappanos, Judit Korda, Patrícia Pálfi, Emese Kiss, and Gyula Poór Copyright © 2015 Anna Bazsó et al. All rights reserved. Bioconcentration and Acute Intoxication of Brazilian Freshwater Fishes by the Methyl Parathion Organophosphate Pesticide Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:49:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/197196/ Three species of freshwater Brazilian fishes (pacu, Piaractus mesopotamicus; piavussu, Leporinus macrocephalus, and curimbatá, Prochilodus lineatus) were exposed to an acute dose of 5 ppm methyl parathion organophosphate pesticide. Three to five individuals per species were exposed, one at a time, to 40 liters tap water spiked with Folidol 600. Pesticide concentrations and cholinesterase (ChE) activities were evaluated in serum, liver, brain, heart, and muscle. The bioconcentration of methyl parathion was similar for all studied fishes. Brain tissue showed the highest pesticide concentration, reaching 80 ppm after exposure for 30 min to methyl parathion. Three to 5 hours of 5 ppm methyl parathion exposure provoked the death of all P. lineatus at 92% brain AChE inhibition, whereas fish from the other two species survived for up to 78 hours with less than 80% brain AChE inhibition. Our results indicate that acute toxic effects of methyl parathion to fish are correlated with brain AChE sensitivity to methyl paraoxon. João Bosco de Salles, Renato Matos Lopes, Cristiane M. C. de Salles, Vicente P. F. Cassano, Manildo Marcião de Oliveira, Vera L. F. Cunha Bastos, and Jayme Cunha Bastos Copyright © 2015 João Bosco de Salles et al. All rights reserved. Differential Expression Analysis in RNA-Seq by a Naive Bayes Classifier with Local Normalization Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:48:07 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/789516/ To improve the applicability of RNA-seq technology, a large number of RNA-seq data analysis methods and correction algorithms have been developed. Although these new methods and algorithms have steadily improved transcriptome analysis, greater prediction accuracy is needed to better guide experimental designs with computational results. In this study, a new tool for the identification of differentially expressed genes with RNA-seq data, named GExposer, was developed. This tool introduces a local normalization algorithm to reduce the bias of nonrandomly positioned read depth. The naive Bayes classifier is employed to integrate fold change, transcript length, and GC content to identify differentially expressed genes. Results on several independent tests show that GExposer has better performance than other methods. The combination of the local normalization algorithm and naive Bayes classifier with three attributes can achieve better results; both false positive rates and false negative rates are reduced. However, only a small portion of genes is affected by the local normalization and GC content correction. Yongchao Dou, Xiaomei Guo, Lingling Yuan, David R. Holding, and Chi Zhang Copyright © 2015 Yongchao Dou et al. All rights reserved. Considerable Variation of Antibacterial Activity of Cu Nanoparticles Suspensions Depending on the Storage Time, Dispersive Medium, and Particle Sizes Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:46:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/412530/ Suspensions of Cu nanoparticles are promising for creating the new class of alternative antimicrobial products. In this study we examined copper nanoparticles of various sizes obtained by the method of wire electric explosion: nanopowder average size 50 nm (Cu 50) and 100 nm (Cu 100). The paper presents the complex study of the influence of physicochemical properties such as particle size and concentration of the freshly prepared and 24-hour suspensions of Cu nanoparticles in distilled water and physiological solution upon their toxicity to bacteria E. coli M-17. Ionic solution of Cu2+ and sodium dichloroisocyanurate was used for comparison study. It has been shown that decrease in the nanoparticle size leads to changes in the correlation between toxicity and concentration as toxicity peaks are observed at low concentrations (0.0001⋯0.01 mg/L). It has been observed that antibacterial properties of Cu 50 nanoparticle suspensions are ceased after 24-hour storage, while for Cu 100 suspensions no correlation between antibacterial properties and storage time has been noted. Cu 100 nanoparticle suspensions at 10 mg/L concentration display higher toxicity at substituting physiological solution for water than Cu 50 suspensions. Dependence of the toxicity on the mean particle aggregates size in suspension was not revealed. Olga V. Zakharova, Anna Yu. Godymchuk, Alexander A. Gusev, Svyatoslav I. Gulchenko, Inna A. Vasyukova, and Denis V. Kuznetsov Copyright © 2015 Olga V. Zakharova et al. All rights reserved. CT Imaging of Craniofacial Fibrous Dysplasia Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:44:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crid/2015/134123/ Fibrous dysplasia is a benign fibroosseous bone dysplasia that can involve single (monostotic) or multiple (polyostotic) bones. Monostotic form is more frequent in the jaws. It is termed as craniofacial fibrous dysplasia, when it involves, though rarely, adjacent craniofacial bones. A 16-year-old girl consulted for a painless swelling in the right posterior mandible for two years. Panoramic radiography revealed ground-glass ill-defined lesions in the three different regions of the maxilla and mandible. Axial CT scan (bone window) showed multiple lesions involving skull base and facial bones. Despite lesions in the skull base, the patient had no abnormal neurological findings. The lesion was diagnosed as fibrous dysplasia based on radiological and histopathological examination. In this paper, CT findings and differential diagnosis of CFD are discussed. CT is a useful imaging technique for CFD cases. Zerrin Unal Erzurumlu, Peruze Celenk, Emel Bulut, and Yakup Sancar Barıs Copyright © 2015 Zerrin Unal Erzurumlu et al. All rights reserved. A New Multichelating Acid System for High-Temperature Sandstone Reservoirs Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:42:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/594913/ Sandstone reservoir acidizing is a complex and heterogeneous acid-rock reaction process. If improper acid treatment is implemented, further damage can be induced instead of removing the initial plug, particularly in high-temperature sandstone reservoirs. An efficient acid system is the key to successful acid treatment. High-temperature sandstone treatment with conventional mud acid system faces problems including high acid-rock reaction rate, short acid effective distance, susceptibility to secondary damage, and serious corrosion to pipelines. In this paper, a new multichelating acid system has been developed to overcome these shortcomings. The acid system is composed of ternary weak acid, organic phosphonic chelating agent, anionic polycarboxylic acid chelating dispersant, fluoride, and other assisted additives. Hydrogen ion slowly released by multistage ionization in ternary weak acid and organic phosphonic within the system decreases the concentration of HF to achieve retardation. Chelating agent and chelating dispersant within the system inhibited anodic and cathodic reaction, respectively, to protect the metal from corrosion, while chelating dispersant has great chelating ability on iron ions, restricting the depolarization reaction of ferric ion and metal. The synergic effect of chelating agent and chelating dispersant removes sulfate scale precipitation and inhibits or decreases potential precipitation such as CaF2, silica gel, and fluosilicate. Mechanisms of retardation, corrosion-inhibition, and scale-removing features have been discussed and evaluated with laboratory tests. Test results indicate that this novel acid system has good overall performance, addressing the technical problems and improving the acidizing effect as well for high-temperature sandstone. Nianyin Li, Qian Zhang, Yongqing Wang, Pingli Liu, and Liqiang Zhao Copyright © 2015 Nianyin Li et al. All rights reserved. Heterologous Reconstitution of Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in Arabidopsis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:35:05 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/768478/ Reconstitution of nonnative, very-long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid (VLC-PUFA) biosynthetic pathways in Arabidopsis thaliana was undertaken. The introduction of three primary biosynthetic activities to cells requires the stable coexpression of multiple proteins within the same cell. Herein, we report that C22 VLC-PUFAs were synthesized from C18 precursors by reactions catalyzed by -desaturase, an ELOVL5-like enzyme involved in VLC-PUFA elongation, and -desaturase. Coexpression of the corresponding genes (McD6DES, AsELOVL5, and PtD5DES) under the control of the seed-specific vicilin promoter resulted in production of docosapentaenoic acid (22:5 n-3) and docosatetraenoic acid (22:4 n-6) as well as eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5 n-3) and arachidonic acid (20:4 n-6) in Arabidopsis seeds. The contributions of the transgenic enzymes and endogenous fatty acid metabolism were determined. Specifically, the reasonable synthesis of omega-3 stearidonic acid (18:4 n-3) could be a useful tool to obtain a sustainable system for the production of omega-3 fatty acids in seeds of a transgenic T3 line 63-1. The results indicated that coexpression of the three proteins was stable. Therefore, this study suggests that metabolic engineering of oilseed crops to produce VLC-PUFAs is feasible. Sun Hee Kim, Kyung Hee Roh, Jong-Sug Park, Kwang-Soo Kim, Hyun Uk Kim, Kyeong-Ryeol Lee, Han-Chul Kang, and Jong-Bum Kim Copyright © 2015 Sun Hee Kim et al. All rights reserved. Antibacterial Discovery and Development: From Gene to Product and Back Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:35:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/591349/ Concern over the reports of antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections in hospitals and in the community has been publicized in the media, accompanied by comments on the risk that we may soon run out of antibiotics as a way to control infectious disease. Infections caused by Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella species, Clostridium difficile, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, and other Enterobacteriaceae species represent a major public health burden. Despite the pharmaceutical sector’s lack of interest in the topic in the last decade, microbial natural products continue to represent one of the most interesting sources for discovering and developing novel antibacterials. Research in microbial natural product screening and development is currently benefiting from progress that has been made in other related fields (microbial ecology, analytical chemistry, genomics, molecular biology, and synthetic biology). In this paper, we review how novel and classical approaches can be integrated in the current processes for microbial product screening, fermentation, and strain improvement. Victor Fedorenko, Olga Genilloud, Liliya Horbal, Giorgia Letizia Marcone, Flavia Marinelli, Yossi Paitan, and Eliora Z. Ron Copyright © 2015 Victor Fedorenko et al. All rights reserved. Applying a Weight-of-Evidence Approach to Evaluate Relevance of Molecular Landscapes in the Exposure-Disease Paradigm Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:34:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/515798/ Information on polymorphisms, mutations, and epigenetic events has become increasingly important in our understanding of molecular mechanisms associated with exposures-disease outcomes. Molecular landscapes can be developed to illustrate the molecular characteristics for environmental carcinogens as well as associated disease outcomes, although comparison of these molecular landscapes can often be difficult to navigate. We developed a method to organize these molecular data that uses a weight-of-evidence approach to rank overlapping molecular events by relative importance for susceptibility to an exposure-disease paradigm. To illustrate the usefulness of this approach, we discuss the example of benzene as an environmental carcinogen and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) as a causative disease endpoint. Using this weight-of-evidence method, we found overlapping polymorphisms in the genes for the metabolic enzymes GST and NQO1, both of which may infer risk of benzene-induced MDS. Polymorphisms in the tumor suppressor gene, TP53, and the inflammatory cytokine gene, TNF-α, were also noted, albeit inferring opposing outcomes. The alleles identified in the DNA repair gene RAD51 indicated an increased risk for MDS in MDS patients and low blood cell counts in benzene-exposed workers. We propose the weight-of-evidence approach as a tool to assist in organizing the sea of emerging molecular data in exposure-disease paradigms. Sherilyn A. Gross and Kristen M. Fedak Copyright © 2015 Sherilyn A. Gross and Kristen M. Fedak. All rights reserved. Impairments of Antigen-Presenting Cells in Pulmonary Tuberculosis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:33:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2015/793292/ The phenotype and functional properties of antigen-presenting cells (APC), that is, circulating monocytes and generated in vitro macrophages and dendritic cells, were investigated in the patients with pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) differing in lymphocyte reactivity to M. tuberculosis antigens (PPD-reactive versus PPD-anergic patients). We revealed the distinct impairments in patient APC functions. For example, the monocyte dysfunctions were displayed by low CD86 and HLA-DR expression, 2-fold increase in CD14+CD16+ expression, the high numbers of IL-10-producing cells, and enhanced IL-10 and IL-6 production upon LPS-stimulation. The macrophages which were in vitro generated from peripheral blood monocytes under GM-CSF were characterized by Th1/Th2-balance shifting (downproduction of IFN-γ coupled with upproduction of IL-10) and by reducing of allostimulatory activity in mixed lymphocyte culture. The dendritic cells (generated in vitro from peripheral blood monocytes upon GM-CSF + IFN-α) were characterized by impaired maturation/activation, a lower level of IFN-γ production in conjunction with an enhanced capacity to produce IL-10 and IL-6, and a profound reduction of allostimulatory activity. The APC dysfunctions were found to be most prominent in PPD-anergic patients. The possible role of APC impairments in reducing the antigen-specific T-cell response to M. tuberculosis was discussed. Ludmila V. Sakhno, Ekaterina Ya. Shevela, Marina A. Tikhonova, Sergey D. Nikonov, Alexandr A. Ostanin, and Elena R. Chernykh Copyright © 2015 Ludmila V. Sakhno et al. All rights reserved. Gamma-Glutamylcyclotransferase: A Novel Target Molecule for Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:33:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/345219/ Gamma-glutamylcyclotransferase (GGCT) is one of the major enzymes involved in glutathione metabolism. However, its gene locus was unknown for many years. Recently, the gene for GGCT was found to be identical to C7orf24, which is registered as a hypothetical protein. Orthologs have been found in bacteria, plants, and nematodes as well as higher organisms, and the GGCT gene is highly preserved among a wide range of species. GGCT (C7orf24) was also reported as an upregulated protein in various cancers. Although the function of GGCT in cancer cells has not been determined, the following important activities have been reported: (1) high expression in various cancer tissues and cancer cell lines, (2) low expression in normal tissues, (3) inhibition of cancer cell proliferation via anti-GGCT RNAi, (4) inhibition of cancer cell invasion and migration via anti-GGCT RNAi, (5) an epigenetic transcriptional regulation in cancer cells, and (6) an antitumor effect in cancer-bearing xenograft mice. Therefore, GGCT is promising as a diagnostic marker and a therapeutic target for various cancers. This review summarizes these interesting findings. Susumu Kageyama, Eiki Hanada, Hiromi Ii, Keiji Tomita, Tatsuhiro Yoshiki, and Akihiro Kawauchi Copyright © 2015 Susumu Kageyama et al. All rights reserved. Reproductive Factors but Not Hormonal Factors Associated with Thyroid Cancer Risk: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:33:38 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/103515/ Many studies have investigated the association between hormonal and reproductive factors and thyroid cancer risk but provided contradictory and inconclusive findings. This review was aimed at precisely estimating this association by pooling all available epidemiological studies. 25 independent studies were retrieved after a comprehensive literature search in databases of PubMed and Embase. Overall, common hormonal factors including oral contraceptive and hormone replacement therapy did not alter the risk of thyroid cancer. Older age at menopause was associated with weakly increased risk of thyroid cancer in overall analysis (RR = 1.24, 95% CI 1.00–1.53, ); however, longer duration of breast feeding was related to moderately reduced risk of thyroid cancer, suggested by pooled analysis in all cohort studies (RR = 0.7, 95% CI 0.51–0.95, ). The pooled RR in hospital-based case-control studies implicated that parous women were more susceptible to thyroid cancer than nulliparous women (RR = 2.30, 95% CI 1.31–4.04, ). The present meta-analysis suggests that older age at menopause and parity are risk factors for thyroid cancer, while longer duration of breast feeding plays a protective role against this cancer. Nevertheless, more relevant epidemiological studies are warranted to investigate roles of hormonal and reproductive factors in thyroid carcinogenesis. Yijuan Cao, Zengyan Wang, Juan Gu, Fangfang Hu, Yujuan Qi, Qianqian Yin, Qingqing Sun, Guotao Li, and Bin Quan Copyright © 2015 Yijuan Cao et al. All rights reserved. Combination of Antiestrogens and Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Breast Cancer Prevention Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:30:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/638645/ The molecular and biological heterogeneity of human breast cancer emphasizes the importance of a multitargeted approach for effective chemoprevention. Targeting the estrogen receptor pathway alone with the antiestrogens, Tamoxifen and Raloxifene reduces the incidence of estrogen receptor positive tumors but is ineffective against the development of hormone independent cancers. Our preclinical data indicate that the administration of omega-3 fatty acids potentiates the antitumor effects of Tamoxifen by inhibiting multiple proliferative and antiapoptotic pathways, several of which interact with estrogen receptor signaling. The complementarity in the mechanism of antitumor action of Tamoxifen and omega-3 fatty acids is well supported by our signaling, genomic, and proteomic studies. Furthermore, administration of omega-3 fatty acids allows the use of lower and, hence, likely less toxic doses of Tamoxifen. If these findings are supported in the clinical setting, the combination of omega-3 fatty acids and anteistrogens may emerge as a promising, effective, and safe chemopreventive strategy to be tested in a large multi-institutional trial using breast cancer incidence as the primary endpoint. Andrea Manni, Karam El-Bayoumy, Christine G. Skibinski, Henry J. Thompson, Julia Santucci-Pereira, Lucas Tadeu Bidinotto, and Jose Russo Copyright © 2015 Andrea Manni et al. All rights reserved. Study of Bone Marrow Mesenchymal and Tendon-Derived Stem Cells Transplantation on the Regenerating Effect of Achilles Tendon Ruptures in Rats Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:29:47 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2015/984146/ Comparative therapeutic significance of tendon-derived stem cells (TDSCs) and bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) transplantation to treat ruptured Achilles tendon was studied. Three groups of SD rats comprising 24 rats each, designated as TDSCs and BMSCs, and nontreated were studied for regenerative effects through morpho-histological evaluations and ultimate failure load. For possible mechanism in tendon repair/regeneration through TDSCs and BMSCs, we measured Collagen-I (Col-I), Col-III gene expression level by RT-PCR, and Tenascin-C expression via immunofluorescent assay. TDSCs showed higher agility in tendon healing with better appearance density and well-organized longitudinal fibrous structure, though BMSCs also showed positive effects. Initially the ultimate failure load was considerably higher in TDSCs than other two study groups during the weeks 1 and 2, but at week 4 it attained an average or healthy tendon strength of 30.2 N. Similar higher tendency in Col-I/III gene expression level during weeks 1, 2, and 4 was observed in TDSCs treated group with an upregulation of 1.5-fold and 1.1-fold than the other two study groups. Immunofluorescent assay revealed higher expression of Tenascin-C in TDSCs at week 1, while both TDSCs and BMSCs treated groups showed detectable CM-Dil-labelled cells at week 4. Compared with BMSCs, TDSCs showed higher regenerative potential while treating ruptured Achilles tendons in rats. Mohanad Kh Al-ani, Kang Xu, Yanjun Sun, Lianhong Pan, ZhiLing Xu, and Li Yang Copyright © 2015 Mohanad Kh Al-ani et al. All rights reserved. Hydrothermal Synthesis of High Crystalline Silicalite from Rice Husk Ash Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:28:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/696513/ The objective of this research work was to evaluate the hydrothermal synthesis of silicalite with high crystallinity within a small particle size. The current study focused on investigating the effects of silica sources such as rice husk ash (RHA) and silica gel (SG), crystallization time, and ratios of NaOH/SiO2, H2O/NaOH, and SiO2/TPABr. The crystallinity, particle size, and morphology were characterized by FT-IR, XRD, particle size analyser, and SEM. The conclusion of the main findings indicated that the XRD patterns of these samples clearly showed a pure phase of MFI structure corresponding to FT-IR spectra with vibration mode at 550 and 1223 cm−1. The highest crystallinity was obtained at reaction time only 6 hours with the mole ratios of NaOH/SiO2, H2O/NaOH and SiO2/TPABr as 0.24, 155, and 30, respectively. When SG was used as a silica source, it was found that the particle size was smaller than that from RHA. The morphologies of all silicalite samples were coffin and cubic-like shape. Chaiwat Kongmanklang and Kunwadee Rangsriwatananon Copyright © 2015 Chaiwat Kongmanklang and Kunwadee Rangsriwatananon. All rights reserved. Evaluation of Temper Embrittlement of 30Cr2MoV Rotor Steels Using Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy Technique Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:28:06 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/957868/ Temper embrittlement tends to occur in the turbine rotor after long running, which refers to the decrease in notch toughness of alloy steels in a certain temperature range (e.g., 400°C to 600°C). The severity of temper embrittlement must be monitored timely to avoid further damagement, and the fracture appearance transition temperature (FATT50) is commonly used as an indicator parameter to characterize the temper embrittlement. Compared with conventional destructive methods (e.g., small punch test), nondestructive approaches have drawn significant attention in predicting the material degradation in turbine rotor steels without impairing the integrity of the components. In this paper, laboratory experiments were carried out based on a nondestructive method, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), with groups of lab-charged specimens for predicting the temper embrittlement (FATT50) of turbine rotor steel. The results show that there was a linear relationship of interfacial impedance of the specimens and their FATT50 values. The predictive error based on the experiment study is within the range of ±15°C, indicating the predicting model is precise, effective, and reasonable. Zhang Shenghan, Lv Yaling, and Tan Yu Copyright © 2015 Zhang Shenghan et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Modifying Prosthetic Socket Base Materials by Adding Nanodiamonds Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:27:39 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/481707/ The curing process of prosthetic socket base materials requires attention owing to a series of associated problems that are yet to be addressed and solved. However, to date, few relevant studies have been reported. In this paper, nanodiamonds modified with a silane coupling agent were dispersed into a prosthetic socket base material, and the performance of the modified base materials was investigated. Adding a predetermined amount of nanodiamonds to the prosthetic socket base material increased the glass transition temperature, improved the mechanical properties of the cured base material, and reduced the influence of the volatile gas formed during the curing process on the environment. With increasing nanodiamond contents, the glass transition temperature increased and the mechanical properties improved slightly. Owing to the high thermal conductivity of the nanodiamonds, the localized heat, as a result of the curing process, could be dissipated and released. Thus, adding nanodiamonds led to a more uniform temperature field forming in the curing system. This improved the curing process and reduced the formation of volatile monomers, thereby decreasing the adverse impact of the generated volatile gases on the environment. All of these provide a potential strategy for modifying prosthetic socket base materials. Lifang Ma, Xiaogang Hu, Shizhong Zhang, and Yu Chen Copyright © 2015 Lifang Ma et al. All rights reserved. A Review on Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition and Low Temperature Combustion by Optical Diagnostics Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:27:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/910348/ Optical diagnostics is an effective method to understand the physical and chemical reaction processes in homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) and low temperature combustion (LTC) modes. Based on optical diagnostics, the true process on mixing, combustion, and emissions can be seen directly. In this paper, the mixing process by port-injection and direct-injection are reviewed firstly. Then, the combustion chemical reaction mechanism is reviewed based on chemiluminescence, natural-luminosity, and laser diagnostics. After, the evolution of pollutant emissions measured by different laser diagnostic methods is reviewed and the measured species including NO, soot, UHC, and CO. Finally, a summary and the future directions on HCCI and LTC used optical diagnostics are presented. Chao Jin and Zunqing Zheng Copyright © 2015 Chao Jin and Zunqing Zheng. All rights reserved. The Emerging and Diverse Roles of Src-Like Adaptor Proteins in Health and Disease Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:26:28 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/952536/ Although Src-like adaptor proteins (SLAP-1 and SLAP-2) were mainly studied in lymphocytes, where they act as negative regulators and provide fine control of receptor signaling, recently, several other functions of these proteins were discovered. In addition to the well-characterized immunoregulatory functions, SLAP proteins appear to have an essential role in the pathogenesis of type I hypersensitivity, osteoporosis, and numerous malignant diseases. Both adaptor proteins are expressed in a wide variety of tissues, where they have mostly inhibitory effects on multiple intracellular signaling pathways. In this review, we summarize the diverse effects of SLAP proteins. Nikolett Marton, Eszter Baricza, Barbara Érsek, Edit I. Buzás, and György Nagy Copyright © 2015 Nikolett Marton et al. All rights reserved. Design of Polymeric Nanofiber Gauze Mask to Prevent Inhaling PM2.5 Particles from Haze Pollution Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:26:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/460392/ Recently, PM2.5 (particulate matter with diameter of 2.5 micron or less) has become a major health hazard from the polluted air in many cities in China. The regular gauze masks are used to prevent inhaling the PM2.5 fine particles; however, those masks are not able to filter out the PM2.5 because of the large porosity of the mask materials. Some well-prevented masks usually have poor breathability, which increases other health risks. In this study, a polysulfone based nanofiber for mask filtration material was synthesized by electrospinning. That nanofiber mask material was characterized by SEM, air permeability test, and PM2.5 trapping experiment. The results indicate that nanofiber mask material can efficiently filter out the PM2.5 particles and simultaneously preserve a good breathability. We attribute such improvement to the nanoscaled fibers, having the same porosity as that of regular gauze mask but with extremely reduced local interfiber space. Xingzhou Li and Yan Gong Copyright © 2015 Xingzhou Li and Yan Gong. All rights reserved. Biologically Active Metabolites Synthesized by Microalgae Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:25:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/835761/ Microalgae are microorganisms that have different morphological, physiological, and genetic traits that confer the ability to produce different biologically active metabolites. Microalgal biotechnology has become a subject of study for various fields, due to the varied bioproducts that can be obtained from these microorganisms. When microalgal cultivation processes are better understood, microalgae can become an environmentally friendly and economically viable source of compounds of interest, because production can be optimized in a controlled culture. The bioactive compounds derived from microalgae have anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant activities, among others. Furthermore, these microorganisms have the ability to promote health and reduce the risk of the development of degenerative diseases. In this context, the aim of this review is to discuss bioactive metabolites produced by microalgae for possible applications in the life sciences. Michele Greque de Morais, Bruna da Silva Vaz, Etiele Greque de Morais, and Jorge Alberto Vieira Costa Copyright © 2015 Michele Greque de Morais et al. All rights reserved. -Profiles: A Nonlinear Clustering Method for Pattern Detection in High Dimensional Data Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:22:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/918954/ With modern technologies such as microarray, deep sequencing, and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS), it is possible to measure the expression levels of thousands of genes/proteins simultaneously to unravel important biological processes. A very first step towards elucidating hidden patterns and understanding the massive data is the application of clustering techniques. Nonlinear relations, which were mostly unutilized in contrast to linear correlations, are prevalent in high-throughput data. In many cases, nonlinear relations can model the biological relationship more precisely and reflect critical patterns in the biological systems. Using the general dependency measure, Distance Based on Conditional Ordered List (DCOL) that we introduced before, we designed the nonlinear -profiles clustering method, which can be seen as the nonlinear counterpart of the -means clustering algorithm. The method has a built-in statistical testing procedure that ensures genes not belonging to any cluster do not impact the estimation of cluster profiles. Results from extensive simulation studies showed that -profiles clustering not only outperformed traditional linear -means algorithm, but also presented significantly better performance over our previous General Dependency Hierarchical Clustering (GDHC) algorithm. We further analyzed a gene expression dataset, on which -profile clustering generated biologically meaningful results. Kai Wang, Qing Zhao, Jianwei Lu, and Tianwei Yu Copyright © 2015 Kai Wang et al. All rights reserved. The Effects of Acid Activation on the Thermal Properties of Polyvinylpyrrolidone and Organoclay Composites Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:20:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/919636/ The thermal stabilities of polyvinylpyrrolidone-organoclays or organo-acid-activated clay composites prepared by chemical exchange reactions were assessed. The raw clay mineral was acid-activated prior to expansion by cetyltrimethylammonium surfactants. The acid activation process affected the intercalated amount of cetyltrimethylammonium cations in the resulting organoclays and, thus, the amount of polyvinylpyrrolidone in the composite. The content of cetyltrimethylammonium cations decreased with the extent of acid activation. The organophilic modification of the clay mineral was an important step in the intercalation of the polyvinylpyrrolidone molecules and, thus, in the expansion of the silicate sheets from 3.80 nm to 4.20 nm. The composites exhibited better crystalline order with intense reflections at lower angles. The thermal stability of organoclays, acid-activated clays, and composites was studied using thermogravimetric analysis and in situ X-ray diffraction. The decomposition of intercalated surfactants occurred at lower temperatures relative to the neat surfactant salt, and the basal spacing of the organoclays (or acid-activated clays) shrunk to 2.0 nm at 215°C. However, the basal spacing of composites exhibited better stability and collapsed to 2.0 nm at 300°C. This type of material could offer an alternative stable product for engineering purposes in the design of new composites. F. Kooli Copyright © 2015 F. Kooli. All rights reserved. Violacein: Properties and Production of a Versatile Bacterial Pigment Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:20:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/465056/ Violacein-producing bacteria, with their striking purple hues, have undoubtedly piqued the curiosity of scientists since their first discovery. The bisindole violacein is formed by the condensation of two tryptophan molecules through the action of five proteins. The genes required for its production, vioABCDE, and the regulatory mechanisms employed have been studied within a small number of violacein-producing strains. As a compound, violacein is known to have diverse biological activities, including being an anticancer agent and being an antibiotic against Staphylococcus aureus and other Gram-positive pathogens. Identifying the biological roles of this pigmented molecule is of particular interest, and understanding violacein’s function and mechanism of action has relevance to those unmasking any of its commercial or therapeutic benefits. Unfortunately, the production of violacein and its related derivatives is not easy and so various groups are also seeking to improve the fermentative yields of violacein through genetic engineering and synthetic biology. This review discusses the recent trends in the research and production of violacein by both natural and genetically modified bacterial strains. Seong Yeol Choi, Kyoung-hye Yoon, Jin Il Lee, and Robert J. Mitchell Copyright © 2015 Seong Yeol Choi et al. All rights reserved. Comparison of Simultaneous Nitrification and Denitrification for Three Different Reactors Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:18:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/901508/ Discharge of high NH4-N containing wastewater into water bodies has become a critical and serious issue due to its negative impact on water and environmental quality. In this research, the performance of three different reactors was assessed and compared with regard to the removal of NH4-N from wastewater. The highest nitrogen removal efficiency of 98.3% was found when the entrapped sludge reactor (ESR), in which the sludge was entrapped in polyethylene glycol polymer, was used. Under intermittent aeration, nitrification and denitrification occurred simultaneously in the aerobic and anaerobic periods. Moreover, internal carbon was consumed efficiently for denitrification. On the other hand, internal carbon consumption was not found to occur in the suspended sludge reactor (SSR) and the mixed sludge reactor (MSR) and this resulted in nitrogen removal efficiencies of SSR and MSR being 64.7 and 45.1%, respectively. Nitrification and denitrification were the main nitrogen removal processes in the aerobic and anaerobic periods, respectively. However, due to the absence of sufficient organic carbon, denitrification was uncompleted resulting in high NO3-N contents in the effluent. W. Khanitchaidecha, A. Nakaruk, P. Koshy, and K. Futaba Copyright © 2015 W. Khanitchaidecha et al. All rights reserved. Lesser-Known Molecules in Ovarian Carcinogenesis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:17:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/321740/ Currently, the deciphering of the signaling pathways brings about new advances in the understanding of the pathogenic mechanism of ovarian carcinogenesis, which is based on the interaction of several molecules with different biochemical structure that, consequently, intervene in cell metabolism, through their role as regulators in proliferation, differentiation, and cell death. Given that the ensemble of biomarkers in OC includes more than 50 molecules the interest of the researchers focuses on the possible validation of each one’s potential as prognosis markers and/or therapeutic targets. Within this framework, this review presents three protein molecules: ALCAM, c-FLIP, and caveolin, motivated by the perspectives provided through the current limited knowledge on their role in ovarian carcinogenesis and on their potential as prognosis factors. Their structural stability, once altered, triggers the initiation of the sequences characteristic for ovarian carcinogenesis, through their role as modulators for several signaling pathways, contributing to the disruption of cellular junctions, disturbance of pro-/antiapoptotic equilibrium, and alteration of transmission of the signals specific for the molecular pathways. For each molecule, the text is built as follows: (i) general remarks, (ii) structural details, and (iii) particularities in expression, from different tumors to landmarks in ovarian carcinoma. Ludmila Lozneanu, Elena Cojocaru, Simona Eliza Giuşcă, Alexandru Cărăuleanu, and Irina-Draga Căruntu Copyright © 2015 Ludmila Lozneanu et al. All rights reserved. Antrochoanal Polyps: How Long Should Follow-Up Be after Surgery? Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:17:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijoto/2015/297417/ Objective. To investigate the length of follow-up needed to detect recurrence of antrochoanal polyps. Methods. A retrospective investigation was performed on patients who had been operated on with a preoperative diagnosis of antrochoanal polyps in Chiang Mai University hospital from 2006 to 2012. Results and Discussion. Of the 38 cases of choanal polyps, 27 were adults (71%). The median age was 23.5, ranging from 7 to 64 years old. Eighteen patients were male (47.4%). The origin of choanal polyps was the maxillary antrum in 32 patients. The most common symptom was nasal obstruction (97.4%). The surgical procedures were polypectomy in one child and combined endoscopic and transcanine fossa approach in two adults. The remainder of the patients underwent endoscopic removal of the polyps. The follow-up time ranged from 1 day to 8 years. There were 5 cases of recurrence of which four were in children. The time for recurrence was 1.2 0.6 years (95% CI 0.51, 1.97). Conclusion. Antrochoanal polyps are more common in younger patients. Recurrence was significantly higher in children. Follow-up of patients should be for at least 2 years postoperatively in order to detect 95% of recurrence. Saisawat Chaiyasate, Kannika Roongrotwattanasiri, Jayanton Patumanond, and Supranee Fooanant Copyright © 2015 Saisawat Chaiyasate et al. All rights reserved. The Influence of Socioeconomic Status on Racial/Ethnic Disparities among the ER/PR/HER2 Breast Cancer Subtypes Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:16:16 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jce/2015/813456/ Background. The eight ER/PR/HER2 breast cancer subtypes vary widely in demographic and clinicopathologic characteristics and survival. This study assesses the contribution of SES to the risk of mortality for blacks, Hispanics, Asian/Pacific Islanders, and American Indians when compared with white women for each ER/PR/HER2 subtype. Methods. We identified 143,184 cases of first primary female invasive breast cancer from the California Cancer Registry between 2000 and 2012. The risk of mortality was computed for each race/ethnicity within each ER/PR/HER2 subtype. Models were adjusted for tumor grade, year of diagnosis, and age. SES was added to a second set of models. Analyses were conducted separately for each stage. Results. Race/ethnicity did not contribute to the risk of mortality for any subtype in stage 1 when adjusted for SES. In stages 2, 3, and 4, race/ethnicity was associated with risk of mortality and adjustment for SES changed the risk only in some subtypes. SES reduced the risk of mortality by over 45% for American Indians with stage 2 ER+/PR+/HER2− cancer, but it decreased the risk of mortality for blacks with stage 2 triple negative cancer by less than 4%. Conclusions. Racial/ethnic disparities do not exist in all ER/PR/HER2 subtypes and, in general, SES modestly alters these disparities. Carol A. Parise and Vincent Caggiano Copyright © 2015 Carol A. Parise and Vincent Caggiano. All rights reserved. Heterogeneity of Genetic Damage in Cervical Nuclei and Lymphocytes in Women with Different Levels of Dysplasia and Cancer-Associated Risk Factors Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:15:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/293408/ The comet assay can be used to assess genetic damage, but heterogeneity in the length of the tails is frequently observed. The aims of this study were to evaluate genetic damage and heterogeneity in the cervical nuclei and lymphocytes from patients with different levels of dysplasia and to determine the risk factors associated with the development of cervical cancer. The study included 97 females who presented with different levels of dysplasia. A comet assay was performed in peripheral blood lymphocytes and cervical epithelial cells. Significant genetic damage () was observed only in patients diagnosed with nuclei cervical from dysplasia III (NCDIII) and lymphocytes from dysplasia I (LDI). However, the standard deviations of the tail lengths in the cervical nuclei and lymphocytes from patients with dysplasia I were significantly different () from the standard deviations of the tail lengths in the nuclei cervical and lymphocytes from patients with DII and DIII (NCDII, NCDIII and LDII, LDIII), indicating a high heterogeneity in tail length. Results suggest that genetic damage could be widely present but only manifested as increased tail length in certain cell populations. This heterogeneity could obscure the statistical significance of the genetic damage. Carlos Alvarez-Moya, Mónica Reynoso-Silva, Alejandro A. Canales-Aguirre, José O. Chavez-Chavez, Hugo Castañeda-Vázquez, and Alfredo I. Feria-Velasco Copyright © 2015 Carlos Alvarez-Moya et al. All rights reserved. Nephrotic Syndrome in a Child Suffering from Tetralogy of Fallot: A Rare Association Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:15:04 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cripe/2015/128409/ Nephrotic syndrome is an uncommon complication of tetralogy of Fallot and has been rarely reported in pediatric population. We describe a 4-year-old female Congolese child who was referred for investigation for persistent dyspnea, edema, and cyanosis and nephrotic range proteinuria. Our patient presented with a tetralogy of Fallot and nephrotic syndrome. Conclusion. This case reminds us that children with tetralogy of Fallot may develop nephrotic proteinuria. Pépé Mfutu Ekulu, Orly Kazadi-wa-Kazadi, Paul Kabuyi Lumbala, and Michel Ntetani Aloni Copyright © 2015 Pépé Mfutu Ekulu et al. All rights reserved. Study of Antioxidant Effectiveness of Kraft Lignin in HDPE Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:13:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jpol/2015/286187/ Polymers are subject to oxidative degradation during all steps of their useful cycle. This degradative process is prevented using stabilizers like antioxidant of the type sterically hindered phenols or amines. Lignin, due to the presence of phenolic groups in their structure, can present characteristic as antioxidant agent, in a similar way to the additives used in polymers. Therefore, in this work, the antioxidant capacity of the lignin in a sample of polyethylene is studied. For this reason, in this paper, a method based on nonisothermal differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) to evaluate this property is used. The samples studied were subjected to heat treatment at different scan rates and in presence of oxygen to promote thermooxidation of the material. The antioxidant capacity of different formulations of lignin and additives in the polymer resin was determined from the temperature of onset of oxidation () at different heating rates and adjusting Arrhenius model prediction. The results indicate that the procedure can predict the antioxidant capacity of antioxidant additives in HDPE with good reproducibility and accuracy, according to the Arrhenius model prediction. I. Piña, F. Ysambertt, D. Perez, and K. Lopez Copyright © 2015 I. Piña et al. All rights reserved. Network Coding for Severe Packet Reordering in Multihop Wireless Networks Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:11:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2015/379108/ Network coding is known to be effective in overcoming packet losses and packet reordering in multihop wireless networks. Despite the benefits, network coding is hard to deploy without being compatible with TCP. To address this problem, a seminal paper proposed a network coding scheme that adopts an ACK-based sliding-widow network coding approach. In this paper we show that the previous scheme may not suffice to mitigate the effects of packets received out of order in multipath wireless networks where severe packet reordering persists. We propose a modified network coding layer where the receiver acknowledges every degree of freedom by using the sequence number of a newly seen packet instead of using that of the oldest unseen packet so that the network coding layer can be compatible with a TCP variant for severe packet reordering. To reduce the decoding matrix size and the coding buffer size, our scheme allows retransmission at the network coding layer. Simulation results show that our scheme outperforms the exiting scheme in multipath wireless networks particularly when severe packet reordering persists. Chansook Lim Copyright © 2015 Chansook Lim. All rights reserved. The Role of Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerase-1 in Rheumatoid Arthritis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:09:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/837250/ Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 (PARP-1) is a nuclear enzyme with a crucial role in the maintenance of genomic stability. In addition to the role of PARP-1 in DNA repair, multiple studies have also demonstrated its involvement in several inflammatory diseases, such as septic shock, asthma, atherosclerosis, and stroke, as well as in cancer. In these diseases, the pharmacological inhibition of PARP-1 has shown a beneficial effect, suggesting that PARP-1 regulates their inflammatory processes. In recent years, we have studied the role of PARP-1 in rheumatoid arthritis, as have other researchers, and the results have shown that PARP-1 has an important function in the development of this disease. This review summarizes current knowledge on the effects of PARP-1 in rheumatoid arthritis. Samuel García and Carmen Conde Copyright © 2015 Samuel García and Carmen Conde. All rights reserved. B-Cell Activating Factor as a Cancer Biomarker and Its Implications in Cancer-Related Cachexia Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:05:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/792187/ B-cell activating factor (BAFF) is a cytokine and adipokine of the TNF ligand superfamily. The main biological function of BAFF in maintaining the maturation of B-cells to plasma cells has recently made it a target of the first FDA-approved selective BAFF antibody, belimumab, for the therapy of systemic lupus erythematosus. Concomitantly, the role of BAFF in cancer has been a subject of research since its discovery. Here we review BAFF as a biomarker of malignant disease activity and prognostic factor in B-cell derived malignancies such as multiple myeloma. Moreover, anti-BAFF therapy seems to be a promising approach in treatment of B-cell derived leukemias/lymphomas. In nonhematologic solid tumors, BAFF may contribute to cancer progression by mechanisms both dependent on and independent of BAFF’s proinflammatory role. We also describe ongoing research into the pathophysiological link between BAFF and cancer-related cachexia. BAFF has been shown to contribute to inflammation and insulin resistance which are known to worsen cancer cachexia syndrome. Taking all the above together, BAFF is emerging as a biomarker of several malignancies and a possible hallmark of cancer cachexia. Michal Rihacek, Julie Bienertova-Vasku, Dalibor Valik, Jaroslav Sterba, Katerina Pilatova, and Lenka Zdrazilova-Dubska Copyright © 2015 Michal Rihacek et al. All rights reserved. Serum IL-6 and IL-23 Levels and Their Correlation with Angiogenic Cytokines and Disease Activity in Ankylosing Spondylitis, Psoriatic Arthritis, and SAPHO Syndrome Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:04:34 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/785705/ Objectives. To assess serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) and interleukin-23 (IL-23) and their correlation with angiogenic cytokines and disease activity in ankylosing spondylitis (AS), psoriatic arthritis (PsA), and SAPHO syndrome. Patients and Methods. We studied 152 spondyloarthritis (SpA) patients: 69 PsA, 61 AS, 22 SAPHO, and 29 controls. We recorded age, sex, disease duration, and treatment. We assessed BASDAI, VAS, and PASI scores. Serum IL-6, IL-23, VEGF, EGF, FGFb, and FGFa levels were determined using ELISA. We estimated ESR and CRP. Results. Serum IL-6 and IL-23 levels were higher in SpA than in control ( and , resp.). There was a positive correlation between serum IL-6 and CRP in AS (), PsA (), and SAPHO () patients. There was a positive correlation between serum IL-6 and ESR in AS (), PsA (), and SAPHO () patients. There was no correlation of serum IL-6 and IL-23 with VAS, BASDAI, and angiogenic cytokines in SpA. Conclusions. Serum IL-6 but not serum IL-23 correlated with ESR and CRP in SpA. No correlation was found of serum IL-6 and IL-23 with VAS, BASDAI, and angiogenic cytokines. Hanna Przepiera-Będzak, Katarzyna Fischer, and Marek Brzosko Copyright © 2015 Hanna Przepiera-Będzak et al. All rights reserved. Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Intake to Regulate Helicobacter pylori-Associated Gastric Diseases as Nonantimicrobial Dietary Approach Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:01:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/712363/ Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs), commonly eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), have been acknowledged as essential long-chain fatty acids imposing either optimal health promotion or the rescuing from chronic inflammatory diseases such as atherosclerosis, fatty liver, and various inflammatory gastrointestinal diseases. Recent studies dealing with EPA and DHA have sparked highest interests because detailed molecular mechanisms had been documented with the identification of its receptor, G protein coupled receptor, and GPR120. In this review article, we have described clear evidences showing that n-3 PUFAs could reduce various Helicobacter pylori- (H. pylori-) associated gastric diseases and extended to play even cancer preventive outcomes including H. pylori-associated gastric cancer by influencing multiple targets, including proliferation, survival, angiogenesis, inflammation, and metastasis. Since our previous studies strongly concluded that nonantimicrobial dietary approach for reducing inflammation, for instance, application of phytoceuticals, probiotics, natural products including Korean red ginseng, and walnut plentiful of n-3 PUFAs, might be prerequisite step for preventing H. pylori-associated gastric cancer as well as facilitating the rejuvenation of precancerous atrophic gastritis, these beneficial lipids can restore or modify inflammation-associated lipid distortion and correction of altered lipid rafts to send right signaling to maintain healthy stomach even after chronic H. pylori infection. Jong-Min Park, Migyeong Jeong, Eun-Hee Kim, Young-Min Han, Sung Hun Kwon, and Ki-Baik Hahm Copyright © 2015 Jong-Min Park et al. All rights reserved. Isolation and Characterization of Hydrocarbon-Degrading Yeast Strains from Petroleum Contaminated Industrial Wastewater Mon, 03 Aug 2015 10:49:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/929424/ Two yeast strains are enriched and isolated from industrial refinery wastewater. These strains were observed for their ability to utilize several classes of petroleum hydrocarbons substrates, such as n-alkanes and aromatic hydrocarbons as a sole carbon source. Phylogenetic analysis based on the D1/D2 variable domain and the ITS-region sequences indicated that strains HC1 and HC4 were members of the genera Candida and Trichosporon, respectively. The mechanism of hydrocarbon uptaking by yeast, Candida, and Trichosporon has been studied by means of the kinetic analysis of hydrocarbons-degrading yeasts growth and substrate assimilation. Biodegradation capacity and biomass quantity were daily measured during twelve days by gravimetric analysis and gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry techniques. Removal of n-alkanes indicated a strong ability of hydrocarbon biodegradation by the isolated yeast strains. These two strains grew on long-chain n-alkane, diesel oil, and crude oil but failed to grow on short-chain n-alkane and aromatic hydrocarbons. Growth measurement attributes of the isolates, using n-hexadecane, diesel oil, and crude oil as substrates, showed that strain HC1 had better degradation for hydrocarbon substrates than strain HC4. In conclusion, these yeast strains can be useful for the bioremediation process and decreasing petroleum pollution in wastewater contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons. Boutheina Gargouri, Najla Mhiri, Fatma Karray, Fathi Aloui, and Sami Sayadi Copyright © 2015 Boutheina Gargouri et al. All rights reserved. ProSim: A Method for Prioritizing Disease Genes Based on Protein Proximity and Disease Similarity Mon, 03 Aug 2015 10:49:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/213750/ Predicting disease genes for a particular genetic disease is very challenging in bioinformatics. Based on current research studies, this challenge can be tackled via network-based approaches. Furthermore, it has been highlighted that it is necessary to consider disease similarity along with the protein’s proximity to disease genes in a protein-protein interaction (PPI) network in order to improve the accuracy of disease gene prioritization. In this study we propose a new algorithm called proximity disease similarity algorithm (ProSim), which takes both of the aforementioned properties into consideration, to prioritize disease genes. To illustrate the proposed algorithm, we have conducted six case studies, namely, prostate cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes mellitus type 2, breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and lung cancer. We employed leave-one-out cross validation, mean enrichment, tenfold cross validation, and ROC curves to evaluate our proposed method and other existing methods. The results show that our proposed method outperforms existing methods such as PRINCE, RWR, and DADA. Gamage Upeksha Ganegoda, Yu Sheng, and Jianxin Wang Copyright © 2015 Gamage Upeksha Ganegoda et al. All rights reserved. Role of GeneXpert MTB/Rif Assay in Diagnosing Tuberculosis in Pregnancy and Puerperium Mon, 03 Aug 2015 10:47:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/criid/2015/794109/ Presentation of tuberculosis (TB) in pregnancy may be atypical with diagnostic challenges. Two patients with complicated pregnancy outcomes, foetal loss and live premature delivery at 5 and 7 months of gestation, respectively, and maternal loss, were diagnosed with pulmonary TB. Chest radiography and computed tomography showed widespread reticuloalveolar infiltrates and consolidation with cavitations, respectively. Both patients were Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) seronegative and sputum smear negative for TB. Sputum GeneXpert MTB/Rif (Xpert MTB/RIF) was positive for Mycobacterium tuberculosis. To strengthen maternal and childhood TB control, screening with same-day point-of-care Xpert MTB/RIF is advocated among both HIV positive pregnant women and symptomatic HIV negative pregnant women during antenatal care in pregnancy and at puerperium. Zaiyad G. Habib, Farouq M. Dayyab, Abdallah Sanda, Sirajo H. Tambuwal, Mahmood M. Dalhat, Hamza Muhammad, Garba Iliyasu, Ibrahim Nashabaru, and Abdulrazaq G. Habib Copyright © 2015 Zaiyad G. Habib et al. All rights reserved. Oxidative Stress Alters miRNA and Gene Expression Profiles in Villous First Trimester Trophoblasts Mon, 03 Aug 2015 10:45:10 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/257090/ The relationship between oxidative stress and miRNA changes in placenta as a potential mechanism involved in preeclampsia (PE) is not fully elucidated. We investigated the impact of oxidative stress on miRNAs and mRNA expression profiles of genes associated with PE in villous 3A first trimester trophoblast cells exposed to H2O2 at 12 different concentrations (0-1 mM) for 0.5, 4, 24, and 48 h. Cytotoxicity, determined using the SRB assay, was used to calculate the IC50 of H2O2. RNA was extracted after 4 h exposure to H2O2 for miRNA and gene expression profiling. H2O2 exerted a concentration- and time-dependent cytotoxicity on 3A trophoblast cells. Short-term exposure of 3A cells to low concentration of H2O2 (5% of IC50) significantly altered miRNA profile as evidenced by significant changes in 195 out of 595 evaluable miRNAs. Tool for annotations of microRNAs (TAM) analysis indicated that these altered miRNAs fall into 43 clusters and 34 families, with 41 functions identified. Exposure to H2O2 altered mRNA expression of 22 out of 84 key genes involved in dysregulation of placental development. In conclusion, short-term exposure of villous first trimester trophoblasts to low concentrations of H2O2 significantly alters miRNA profile and expression of genes implicated in placental development. Courtney E. Cross, Mai F. Tolba, Catherine M. Rondelli, Meixiang Xu, and Sherif Z. Abdel-Rahman Copyright © 2015 Courtney E. Cross et al. All rights reserved. Magnetic Force Microscopy Study of -Based Nanocrystalline Materials: Effect of Mo Addition Mon, 03 Aug 2015 10:44:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2015/151740/ The addition of Molybdenum was used to modify the nanostructure and enhance coercivity of rare-earth-free Zr2Co11-based nanocrystalline permanent magnets. The effect of Mo addition on magnetic domain structures of melt spun nanocrystalline Zr16Co84-xMox (, 0.5, 1, 1.5, and 2.0) ribbons has been investigated. It was found that magnetic properties and local domain structures are strongly influenced by Mo doping. The coercivity of the samples increases with the increase in Mo content (). The maximum energy product increases with increasing from 0.5 MGOe for to a maximum value of 4.2 MGOe for . The smallest domain size with a relatively short magnetic correlation length of 128 nm and largest root-mean-square phase shift value of 0.66° are observed for the . The optimal Mo addition promotes magnetic domain structure refinement and thus leads to a significant increase in coercivity and energy product in this sample. Lanping Yue, Yunlong Jin, Wenyong Zhang, and David J. Sellmyer Copyright © 2015 Lanping Yue et al. All rights reserved. Screening Ingredients from Herbs against Pregnane X Receptor in the Study of Inductive Herb-Drug Interactions: Combining Pharmacophore and Docking-Based Rank Aggregation Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:57:17 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/657159/ The issue of herb-drug interactions has been widely reported. Herbal ingredients can activate nuclear receptors and further induce the gene expression alteration of drug-metabolizing enzyme and/or transporter. Therefore, the herb-drug interaction will happen when the herbs and drugs are coadministered. This kind of interaction is called inductive herb-drug interactions. Pregnane X Receptor (PXR) and drug-metabolizing target genes are involved in most of inductive herb-drug interactions. To predict this kind of herb-drug interaction, the protocol could be simplified to only screen agonists of PXR from herbs because the relations of drugs with their metabolizing enzymes are well studied. Here, a combinational in silico strategy of pharmacophore modelling and docking-based rank aggregation (DRA) was employed to identify PXR’s agonists. Firstly, 305 ingredients were screened out from 820 ingredients as candidate agonists of PXR with our pharmacophore model. Secondly, DRA was used to rerank the result of pharmacophore filtering. To validate our prediction, a curated herb-drug interaction database was built, which recorded 380 herb-drug interactions. Finally, among the top 10 herb ingredients from the ranking list, 6 ingredients were reported to involve in herb-drug interactions. The accuracy of our method is higher than other traditional methods. The strategy could be extended to studies on other inductive herb-drug interactions. Zhijie Cui, Hong Kang, Kailin Tang, Qi Liu, Zhiwei Cao, and Ruixin Zhu Copyright © 2015 Zhijie Cui et al. All rights reserved. Adsorption of Polymeric Additives Based on Vinyl Acetate Copolymers as Wax Dispersant and Its Relevance to Polymer Crystallization Mechanisms Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:57:15 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/683109/ The present work has main target to study the effect of additives molecular weight and composition on the flow characteristics of wax crude oil at low temperature below pour point temperature. In this respect, maleic anhydride ester-co-vinyl acetate copolymers with varied monomers feed ratios and different alkyl ester lengths, namely, dodecyl, stearyl, and behenyl alkyl chains, were prepared. These polymeric materials were characterized by FTIR, 1HNMR, and GPC. The performance of these additives as pour point depressants and flow improver for Egyptian waxy crude oil was evaluated through measurements of pour point and rheological parameters (viscosity and yield stress). It was observed that stearyl maleate-vinyl acetate copolymer with 1 : 2 feed ratio shows the best efficiency as pour point depressant even at low concentration while octadecyl maleate-vinyl acetate copolymers with 2 : 1 feed ratio are effective as flow improver. Ayman M. Atta, Rasha A. El-Ghazawy, Fatma A. Morsy, Ali M. S. Hebishy, and Abdullah Elmorsy Copyright © 2015 Ayman M. Atta et al. All rights reserved. Comparative Study on Particles Formation in a Diesel Engine When Lubricating Oil Involved in Fuel Combustion Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:54:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/839879/ The effect of lubricating oil on the morphology of particulate matter (PM) was studied in a diesel engine fueled with pure diesel fuel and blended fuel containing 0.5% by weight of lubricating oil. Particulate matter emitted by diesel engines is formed primarily by soot agglomerates which are composed of primary particles. In this paper, particulate matter was collected with a thermophoretic sampling system, and a high-resolution transmission electron microscope (TEM) was used to investigate the primary particles. A Fast Particulate Spectrometer, DMS 500, was used to determine the particle size distributions. The TEM results indicated that the mean diameters of the primary particles increased after the oil was added into the fuel. Particle size distributions results showed that lubricating oil in the fuel gave rise to a higher concentration in nucleation mode. Lihui Dong, Weiqiang Han, Xingyu Liang, and Yuesen Wang Copyright © 2015 Lihui Dong et al. All rights reserved. Experimental Investigation of Injection Strategies on Low Temperature Combustion Fuelled with Gasoline in a Compression Ignition Engine Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:53:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/207248/ The present study focuses on the experimental investigation on the effect of fuel injection strategies on LTC with gasoline on a single-cylinder CI engine. Firstly, the engine performance and emissions have been explored by sweeping SOI1 and split percentage for the load of 0.9 MPa IMEP at an engine speed of 1500 rpm. Then, the double-injection strategy has been tested for load expansion compared with single-injection. The results indicate that, with the fixed CA50, the peak HRR is reduced by advancing SOI1 and increasing split percentage gradually. Higher indicated thermal efficiency, as well as lower MPRR and COV, can be achieved simultaneously with later SOI1 and higher split percentage. As split percentage increases, emission decreases but soot emission increases. CO and THC emissions are increased by earlier SOI1, resulting in a slight decrease in combustion efficiency. Compared with single-injection, the double-injection strategy enables successful expansion of high-efficiency and clean combustion region, with increasing soot, CO, and THC emissions at high loads and slightly declining combustion efficiency and indicated thermal efficiency, however. MPRR and soot emission are considered to be the predominant constraints to the load expansion of gasoline LTC, and they are related to their trade-off relationship. Binbin Yang, Mingfa Yao, Zunqing Zheng, and Lang Yue Copyright © 2015 Binbin Yang et al. All rights reserved. Application of Boosting Regression Trees to Preliminary Cost Estimation in Building Construction Projects Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:48:56 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/149702/ Among the recent data mining techniques available, the boosting approach has attracted a great deal of attention because of its effective learning algorithm and strong boundaries in terms of its generalization performance. However, the boosting approach has yet to be used in regression problems within the construction domain, including cost estimations, but has been actively utilized in other domains. Therefore, a boosting regression tree (BRT) is applied to cost estimations at the early stage of a construction project to examine the applicability of the boosting approach to a regression problem within the construction domain. To evaluate the performance of the BRT model, its performance was compared with that of a neural network (NN) model, which has been proven to have a high performance in cost estimation domains. The BRT model has shown results similar to those of NN model using 234 actual cost datasets of a building construction project. In addition, the BRT model can provide additional information such as the importance plot and structure model, which can support estimators in comprehending the decision making process. Consequently, the boosting approach has potential applicability in preliminary cost estimations in a building construction project. Yoonseok Shin Copyright © 2015 Yoonseok Shin. All rights reserved. Localization in an Industrial Environment: A Case Study on the Difficulties for Positioning in a Harsh Environment Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:47:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2015/567976/ While indoor localization has become a highly growing application domain in the last few years, it is hardly investigated in industrial environments. Interferences of magnetic fields, shadowing, and multipath propagation discourage positioning system vendors from porting their techniques to these harsh environments. However, the actual influence of these interferences on the positioning accuracy and the differences between an industrial and a nonindustrial environment have never been evaluated. This paper analyzes the actual differences for a positioning technique that is based on Wi-Fi fingerprinting, map matching, dead reckoning, filtering, and a plausibility determination. An investigation of the Wi-Fi signal strengths and compass sensor values in an industrial and a nonindustrial environment thereby showed that the differences between them are significant. In fact, it shows that more interferences and shadowing in the industrial environment resulted in even more accurate positioning. Michael Hölzl, Roland Neumeier, and Gerald Ostermayer Copyright © 2015 Michael Hölzl et al. All rights reserved. Genetic Diversity of Human Adenovirus in Children with Acute Gastroenteritis, Albania, 2013–2015 Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:46:15 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/142912/ The objectives of the present study were to assess the occurrence of human adenoviruses (HAdVs) in paediatric patients with gastroenteritis in Albania and to characterize HAdV strains. Faecal specimens from children admitted with acute gastroenteritis to the Paediatric Hospital in Tirana were screened for HAdV, using broad-range primers targeting the hexon gene, in combination with species-specific primers targeting the fiber gene. Phylogenetic analysis was then performed to assess the genetic relationships among the different sequences and between the sequences of the samples and those of the prototype strains. Adenovirus DNA was detected in 33/142 samples (23.2%); 14 belonged to species F (13 HAdV-41 and 1 HAdV-40), 13 to species C (1 HAdV-1, 8 HAdV-2, and 4 HAdV-5), 5 to species B (HAdV-3), and 1 to species A (HAdV-12). Rotavirus coinfection was present in 9/33 (27.2%) positive samples. In the remaining 24 positive samples (12 enteric—F species; 12 nonenteric—A, B, or C species), HAdVs were detected as unique viral pathogens, suggesting that HAdV may be an important cause of diarrhoea in children requiring hospitalization. This is the first study investigating the presence of human adenoviruses (species A–G) as etiologic agents of viral gastroenteritis in children in Albania. G. La Rosa, S. Della Libera, S. Petricca, M. Iaconelli, D. Donia, P. Saccucci, F. Cenko, G. Xhelilaj, and M. Divizia Copyright © 2015 G. La Rosa et al. All rights reserved. First Report of Klebsiella pneumoniae-Carbapenemase-3-Producing Escherichia coli ST479 in Poland Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:45:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/256028/ An increase in the antibiotic resistance among members of the Enterobacteriaceae family has been observed worldwide. Multidrug-resistant Gram-negative rods are increasingly reported. The treatment of infections caused by Escherichia coli and other Enterobacteriaceae has become an important clinical problem associated with reduced therapeutic possibilities. Antimicrobial carbapenems are considered the last line of defense against multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria. Unfortunately, an increase of carbapenem resistance due to the production of Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase (KPC) enzymes has been observed. In this study we describe the ability of E. coli to produce carbapenemase enzymes based on the results of the combination disc assay with boronic acid performed according to guidelines established by the European Community on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (EUCAST) and the biochemical Carba NP test. Moreover, we evaluated the presence of genes responsible for the production of carbapenemases (, , , ) and genes encoding other β-lactamases (, , ) among E. coli isolate. The tested isolate of E. coli that possessed the and genes was identified. The tested strain exhibited susceptibility to colistin (0.38 μg/mL) and tigecycline (1 μg/mL). This is the first detection of in an E. coli ST479 in Poland. Dominika Ojdana, Paweł Sacha, Dorota Olszańska, Piotr Majewski, Piotr Wieczorek, Jadwiga Jaworowska, Anna Sieńko, Anna Jurczak, and Elżbieta Tryniszewska Copyright © 2015 Dominika Ojdana et al. All rights reserved. Different Plaque Composition and Progression in Patients with Stable and Unstable Coronary Syndromes Evaluated by Cardiac CT Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:43:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/401357/ Objective. To compare the quantity, subtype, and progression of atherosclerosis by cardiac computed tomography (CT) and intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) in patients with stable (SAP) and unstable angina pectoris or non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction (UAP/n-STEMI). Methods. Forty patients with SAP and 20 with UAP/n-STEMI underwent cardiac CT and angiography with IVUS at baseline and after one year. Atherosclerotic segments were divided into calcified, mixed, or noncalcified subtypes, and significant stenoses were registered. Results. Thirty-two SAP and 15 UAP/n-STEMI patients completed the CT follow-up. At baseline, the number of atherosclerotic segments was higher in UAP/n-STEMI than in SAP (). UAP/n-STEMI patients had more segments with noncalcified plaques () whereas SAP patients had more segments with calcified plaques (). The number of segments with significant stenosis did not differ between the groups, but noncalcified plaques more frequently caused significant stenoses in UAP/n-STEMI than in SAP patients (). After one year the number of segments with atherosclerosis increased in SAP patients (). The number of atherosclerotic segments remained unchanged in UAP/n-STEMI patients. However, composition was altered as the number of segments with noncalcified plaques decreased (). IVUS data confirmed the CT findings. Conclusion. Quantity, subtype, and progression of atherosclerosis differ between SAP and UAP/n-STEMI patients. Maiken Glud Dalager, Morten Bøttcher, Jesper Thygesen, Gratien Andersen, and Hans Erik Bøtker Copyright © 2015 Maiken Glud Dalager et al. All rights reserved. Gene Signature of Human Oral Mucosa Fibroblasts: Comparison with Dermal Fibroblasts and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:43:12 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/121575/ Oral mucosa is a useful material for regeneration therapy with the advantages of its accessibility and versatility regardless of age and gender. However, little is known about the molecular characteristics of oral mucosa. Here we report the first comparative profiles of the gene signatures of human oral mucosa fibroblasts (hOFs), human dermal fibroblasts (hDFs), and hOF-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (hOF-iPSCs), linking these with biological roles by functional annotation and pathway analyses. As a common feature of fibroblasts, both hOFs and hDFs expressed glycolipid metabolism-related genes at higher levels compared with hOF-iPSCs. Distinct characteristics of hOFs compared with hDFs included a high expression of glycoprotein genes, involved in signaling, extracellular matrix, membrane, and receptor proteins, besides a low expression of HOX genes, the hDFs-markers. The results of the pathway analyses indicated that tissue-reconstructive, proliferative, and signaling pathways are active, whereas senescence-related genes in p53 pathway are inactive in hOFs. Furthermore, more than half of hOF-specific genes were similarly expressed to those of hOF-iPSC genes and might be controlled by WNT signaling. Our findings demonstrated that hOFs have unique cellular characteristics in specificity and plasticity. These data may provide useful insight into application of oral fibroblasts for direct reprograming. Keiko Miyoshi, Taigo Horiguchi, Ayako Tanimura, Hiroko Hagita, and Takafumi Noma Copyright © 2015 Keiko Miyoshi et al. All rights reserved. Effects of Nanoscale Carbon Black Modified by HNO3 on Immobilization and Phytoavailability of Ni in Contaminated Soil Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:40:34 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jchem/2015/839069/ A surface-modified nanoscale carbon black (MCB) as Ni adsorbent in contaminated soil was prepared by oxidizing the carbon black with 65% HNO3. The surface properties of the adsorbent were characterized by zeta potential analysis, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIRs). Batch experiments were conducted to evaluate the improvement of Ni2+ adsorption by MCB. Greenhouse cultivation experiments were conducted to examine the effect of MCB on the DTPA-extractable Ni2+ in soil, Ni2+ uptake of ryegrass shoot, and growth of ryegrass. Results indicated that MCB had much lower negative zeta potential, more functional groups for exchange and complexation of cation, and more heterogeneous pores and cavities for the adsorption of cation than the unmodified parent one (CB). MCB showed enhanced sorption capacity for Ni (, 49.02 mg·g−1) compared with CB (, 39.22 mg·g−1). Greenhouse cultivation experiment results showed that the biomass of ryegrass shoot and the Ni uptake of the ryegrass shoot were significantly increased and the concentrations of DTPA-extractable Ni in soil were significantly decreased with the increasing of MCB amount. It is clear from this work that the MCB had good adsorption properties for the Ni and could be applied in the in situ immobilization and remediation of heavy metal contaminated saline-alkali soils. Jiemin Cheng, Lei Yu, Tong Li, Yuzhen Liu, Chengxiu Lu, Tingting Li, and Hanwei Wang Copyright © 2015 Jiemin Cheng et al. All rights reserved. Integration of DCE-MRI and DW-MRI Quantitative Parameters for Breast Lesion Classification Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:38:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/237863/ Objective. The purpose of our study was to evaluate the diagnostic value of an imaging protocol combining dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) and diffusion-weighted MRI (DW-MRI) in patients with suspicious breast lesions. Materials and Methods. A total of 31 breast lesions (15 malignant and 16 benign proved by histological examination) in 26 female patients were included in this study. For both DCE-MRI and DW-MRI model free and model based parameters were computed pixel by pixel on manually segmented ROIs. Statistical procedures included conventional linear analysis and more advanced techniques for classification of lesions in benign and malignant. Results. Our findings indicated no strong correlation between DCE-MRI and DW-MRI parameters. Results of classification analysis show that combining of DCE parameters or DW-MRI parameter, in comparison of single feature, does not yield a dramatic improvement of sensitivity and specificity of the two techniques alone. The best performance was obtained considering a full combination of all features. Moreover, the classification results combining all features are dominated by DCE-MRI features alone. Conclusion. The combination of DWI and DCE-MRI does not show a potential to dramatically increase the sensitivity and specificity of breast MRI. DCE-MRI alone gave the same performance as in combination with DW-MRI. Roberta Fusco, Mario Sansone, Salvatore Filice, Vincenza Granata, Orlando Catalano, Daniela Maria Amato, Maurizio Di Bonito, Massimiliano D’Aiuto, Immacolata Capasso, Massimo Rinaldo, and Antonella Petrillo Copyright © 2015 Roberta Fusco et al. All rights reserved. Systematic Review of Randomized Clinical Trials on Safety and Efficacy of Pharmacological and Nonpharmacological Treatments for Retinitis Pigmentosa Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:37:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/joph/2015/737053/ Aims. Several treatments have been proposed to slow down progression of Retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a hereditary retinal degenerative condition leading to severe visual impairment. The aim of this study is to systematically review data from randomized clinical trials (RCTs) evaluating safety and efficacy of medical interventions for the treatment of RP. Methods. Randomized clinical trials on medical treatments for syndromic and nonsyndromic RP published up to December 2014 were included in the review. Visual acuity, visual field, electroretinogram, and adverse events were used as outcome measures. Results. The 19 RCTs included in this systematic review included trials on hyperbaric oxygen delivery, topical brimonidine tartrate, vitamins, docosahexaenoic acid, gangliosides, lutein, oral nilvadipine, ciliary neurotrophic factor, and valproic acid. All treatments proved safe but did not show significant benefit on visual function. Long term supplementation with vitamin A showed a significantly slower decline rate in electroretinogram amplitude. Conclusions. Although all medical treatments for RP appear safe, evidence emerging from RCTs is limited since they do not present comparable results suitable for quantitative statistical analysis. The limited number of RCTs, the poor clinical results, and the heterogeneity among studies negatively influence the strength of recommendations for the long term management of RP patients. Marta Sacchetti, Flavio Mantelli, Daniela Merlo, and Alessandro Lambiase Copyright © 2015 Marta Sacchetti et al. All rights reserved. Prenatal Exposure to Sodium Arsenite Alters Placental Glucose 1, 3, and 4 Transporters in Balb/c Mice Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:36:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/175025/ Inorganic arsenic (iAs) exposure induces a decrease in glucose type 4 transporter (GLUT4) expression on the adipocyte membrane, which may be related to premature births and low birth weight infants in women exposed to iAs at reproductive age. The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of sodium arsenite (NaAsO2) exposure on GLUT1, GLUT3, and GLUT4 protein expression and on placental morphology. Female Balb/c mice () were exposed to 0, 12, and 20 ppm of NaAsO2 in drinking water from 8th to 18th day of gestation. Morphological changes and GLUT1, GLUT3, and GLUT4 expression were evaluated in placentas by immunohistochemical and image analysis and correlated with iAs and arsenical species concentration, which were quantified by atomic absorption spectroscopy. NaAsO2 exposure induced a significant decrease in fetal and placental weight () and increases in infarctions and vascular congestion. Whereas GLUT1 expression was unchanged in placentas from exposed group, GLUT3 expression was found increased. In contrast, GLUT4 expression was significantly lower () in placentas from females exposed to 12 ppm. The decrease in placental GLUT4 expression might affect the provision of adequate fetal nutrition and explain the low fetal weight observed in the exposed groups. Daniela Sarahí Gutiérrez-Torres, Carmen González-Horta, Luz María Del Razo, Rocío Infante-Ramírez, Ernesto Ramos-Martínez, Margarita Levario-Carrillo, and Blanca Sánchez-Ramírez Copyright © 2015 Daniela Sarahí Gutiérrez-Torres et al. All rights reserved. A Simple Fitness Function for Minimum Attribute Reduction Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:36:04 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/921487/ The goal of minimal attribute reduction is to find the minimal subset of the condition attribute set such that has the same classification quality as . This problem is well known to be NP-hard. When only one minimal attribute reduction is required, it was transformed into a nonlinearly constrained combinatorial optimization problem over a Boolean space and some heuristic search approaches were used. In this case, the fitness function is one of the keys of this problem. It required that the fitness function must satisfy the equivalence between the optimal solution and the minimal attribute reduction. Unfortunately, the existing fitness functions either do not meet the equivalence, or are too complicated. In this paper, a simple and better fitness function based on positive domain was given. Theoretical proof shows that the optimal solution is equivalent to minimal attribute reduction. Experimental results show that the proposed fitness function is better than the existing fitness function for each algorithm in test. Yuebin Su, Jin Guo, and Zejun Li Copyright © 2015 Yuebin Su et al. All rights reserved. A Complex Multiherbal Regimen Based on Ayurveda Medicine for the Management of Hepatic Cirrhosis Complicated by Ascites: Nonrandomized, Uncontrolled, Single Group, Open-Label Observational Clinical Study Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:35:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/613182/ Hepatic cirrhosis is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, especially if complicated by ascites. This chronic condition can be related to the classical disease entity jalodara in Traditional Indian Medicine (Ayurveda). The present paper aims to evaluate the general potential of Ayurvedic therapy for overall clinical outcomes in hepatic cirrhosis complicated by ascites (HCcA). In form of a nonrandomized, uncontrolled, single group, open-label observational clinical study, 56 patients fulfilling standardized diagnostic criteria for HCcA were observed during their treatment at the P. D. Patel Ayurveda Hospital, Nadiad, India. Based on Ayurvedic tradition, a standardized treatment protocol was developed and implemented, consisting of oral administration of single and compound herbal preparations combined with purificatory measures as well as dietary and lifestyle regimens. The outcomes were assessed by measuring liver functions through specific clinical features and laboratory parameters and by evaluating the Child-Pugh prognostic grade score. After 6 weeks of treatment and a follow-up period of 18 weeks, the outcomes showed statistically significant and clinically relevant improvements. Further larger and randomized trials on effectiveness, safety, and quality of the Ayurvedic approach in the treatment of HCcA are warranted to support these preliminary findings. Manish V. Patel, Kalapi B. Patel, Shivenarain Gupta, Andreas Michalsen, Elmar Stapelfeldt, and Christian S. Kessler Copyright © 2015 Manish V. Patel et al. All rights reserved. Risk Factors of the Invasive Breast Cancer Locoregional Recurrence Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:35:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/789646/ Background. The aim of the research was to estimate the frequency of the locoregional breast cancer recurrence appearance, the recurrence-free period continuance, and the 3- and 5-year survival depending on the scope of the surgical intervention, menstrual profile, and histological and molecular-biologic characteristics of the primary tumor. Patients and Methods. Among 218 patients with a breast cancer, 99 patients had breast-conserving surgery (BCS) and 119 underwent radical mastectomy (RME); all patients had regional lymphatic nodes dissection. The size and the primary tumor differentiation degree, metastasis presence in the regional lymph nodes, ER expression, PR, and Her/2neu were assessed as the prognostics factors. Results. It was defined that the locoregional recurrence appearance frequency in patients with BCS turned out to be 13%, and in patients after RME it turned out to be 9%; the recurrence-free period continuance was months and months, respectively. Conclusions. The locoregional cancer recurrence frequency is higher in women with the menstrual function being preserved at the moment of the primary tumor detection than in postmenopausal patients and also in patients having the hyperexpression of the Her/2neu. The ipsilateral cancer recurrence decreases the 3-year survival by 7,1% and the 5-year one by 20,3%, respectively. R. V. Liubota, A. S. Zotov, R. I. Vereshchako, I. I. Liubota, and V. V. Zaychuk Copyright © 2015 R. V. Liubota et al. All rights reserved. Gestational Hypertension and Organophosphorus Pesticide Exposure: A Cross-Sectional Study Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:34:12 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/280891/ Hypertension is the most common medical problem encountered during pregnancy, complicating 2-3% of pregnancies. High blood pressure (BP) with diastolic BP ≥ 90 mm Hg and/or systolic BP ≥ 140 mm Hg arising after week 22 of pregnancy and resolving after delivery is defined as gestational hypertension (GHY). The aim of this cross-sectional study was to investigate whether occupational and/or environmental exposure to organophosphorus (OP) pesticide affects GHY. Women at approximately 22 weeks of gestation were recruited. OP pesticide exposure in the first trimester of pregnancy was classified into four categories: no exposure, indirect exposure, domestic exposure, and occupational exposure. Application of the exclusion criteria left 2203 participants (mean age 30.4 ± 11.6 years). Data analysis showed that in women with indirect OP pesticide exposure the incidence of GHY was slightly higher than that in the world population, whereas domestic exposure involved a 7% increase and occupational exposure a 12% increase. Analysis of the pesticides used by participants highlighted a possible role for malathion and diazinon (adjusted OR 1.09 and 1.14, resp.). Further investigation of exposed workers and the general population is clearly warranted given the broad diffusion of OP pesticides and their possible public health impact, maybe by including a wider range of health outcomes. Caterina Ledda, Maria Fiore, Lory Santarelli, Massimo Bracci, Giuseppe Mascali, Maria Grazia D’Agati, Alfredo Busà, Margherita Ferrante, and Venerando Rapisarda Copyright © 2015 Caterina Ledda et al. All rights reserved. Improving the Mapping of Smith-Waterman Sequence Database Searches onto CUDA-Enabled GPUs Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:33:16 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/185179/ Sequence alignment lies at heart of the bioinformatics. The Smith-Waterman algorithm is one of the key sequence search algorithms and has gained popularity due to improved implementations and rapidly increasing compute power. Recently, the Smith-Waterman algorithm has been successfully mapped onto the emerging general-purpose graphics processing units (GPUs). In this paper, we focused on how to improve the mapping, especially for short query sequences, by better usage of shared memory. We performed and evaluated the proposed method on two different platforms (Tesla C1060 and Tesla K20) and compared it with two classic methods in CUDASW++. Further, the performance on different numbers of threads and blocks has been analyzed. The results showed that the proposed method significantly improves Smith-Waterman algorithm on CUDA-enabled GPUs in proper allocation of block and thread numbers. Liang-Tsung Huang, Chao-Chin Wu, Lien-Fu Lai, and Yun-Ju Li Copyright © 2015 Liang-Tsung Huang et al. All rights reserved. Docosahexaenoic Acid Induces Cell Death in Human Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Cells by Repressing mTOR via AMPK Activation and PI3K/Akt Inhibition Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:31:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/239764/ The anticancer properties and mechanism of action of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3-PUFAs) have been demonstrated in several cancers; however, the mechanism in lung cancer remains unclear. Here, we show that docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a ω3-PUFA, induced apoptosis and autophagy in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells. DHA-induced cell death was accompanied by AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activation and inactivated phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling. Knocking down AMPK and overexpressing Akt increased mTOR activity and attenuated DHA-induced cell death, suggesting that DHA induces cell death via AMPK- and Akt-regulated mTOR inactivation. This was confirmed in Fat-1 transgenic mice, which produce ω3-PUFAs. Lewis lung cancer (LLC) tumor cells implanted into Fat-1 mice showed slower growth, lower phospho-Akt levels, and higher levels of apoptosis and autophagy than cells implanted into wild-type mice. Taken together, these data suggest that DHA-induced apoptosis and autophagy in NSCLC cells are associated with AMPK activation and PI3K/Akt inhibition, which in turn lead to suppression of mTOR; thus ω3-PUFAs may be utilized as potential therapeutic agents for NSCLC treatment. Nayeong Kim, Soyeon Jeong, Kaipeng Jing, Soyeon Shin, Soyeon Kim, Jun-Young Heo, Gi-Ryang Kweon, Seung-Kiel Park, Tong Wu, Jong-Il Park, and Kyu Lim Copyright © 2015 Nayeong Kim et al. All rights reserved. An Intelligent Model for Pairs Trading Using Genetic Algorithms Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:24:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/939606/ Pairs trading is an important and challenging research area in computational finance, in which pairs of stocks are bought and sold in pair combinations for arbitrage opportunities. Traditional methods that solve this set of problems mostly rely on statistical methods such as regression. In contrast to the statistical approaches, recent advances in computational intelligence (CI) are leading to promising opportunities for solving problems in the financial applications more effectively. In this paper, we present a novel methodology for pairs trading using genetic algorithms (GA). Our results showed that the GA-based models are able to significantly outperform the benchmark and our proposed method is capable of generating robust models to tackle the dynamic characteristics in the financial application studied. Based upon the promising results obtained, we expect this GA-based method to advance the research in computational intelligence for finance and provide an effective solution to pairs trading for investment in practice. Chien-Feng Huang, Chi-Jen Hsu, Chi-Chung Chen, Bao Rong Chang, and Chen-An Li Copyright © 2015 Chien-Feng Huang et al. All rights reserved. Silymarin Accelerates Liver Regeneration after Partial Hepatectomy Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:23:28 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/603529/ Partial hepatectomy (PHx) is a liver regeneration physiological response induced to maintain homeostasis. Liver regeneration evolved presumably to protect wild animals from catastrophic liver loss caused by toxins or tissue injury. Silymarin (Sm) ability to stimulate liver regeneration has been an object of curiosity for many years. Silymarin has been investigated for use as an antioxidant and anticarcinogen. However, its use as a supportive treatment for liver damage is elusive. In this study, we fed silymarin (Sm, 25 mg/kg) to male Sprague-Dawley rats for 7 weeks. Surgical 2/3 PHx was then conducted on the rats at 6 hrs, 24 hrs, and 72 hrs. Western blot and RT-PCR were conducted to detect the cell cycle activities and silymarin effects on hepatic regeneration. The results showed that silymarin enhanced liver regeneration by accelerating the cell cycle in PHx liver. Silymarin led to increased G1 phase (cyclin D1/pRb), S phase (cyclin E/E2F), G2 phase (cyclin B), and M phase (cyclin A) protein and mRNA at 6 hrs, 24 hrs, and 72 hrs PHx. HGF, TGFα, and TGFβ1 growth factor expressions were also enhanced. We suggest that silymarin plays a crucial role in accelerated liver regeneration after PHx. Jia-Ping Wu, Chin-Chuan Tsai, Yu-Lan Yeh, Yueh-Min Lin, Chien-Chung Lin, Cecilia Hsuan Day, Chia-Yao Shen, V. Vijaya Padma, Lung-Fa Pan, and Chih-Yang Huang Copyright © 2015 Jia-Ping Wu et al. All rights reserved. Dendritic Cell Activity Driven by Recombinant Mycobacterium bovis BCG Producing Human IL-18, in Healthy BCG Vaccinated Adults Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:23:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2015/359153/ Tuberculosis remains an enormous global burden, despite wide vaccination coverage with the Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG), the only vaccine available against this disease, indicating that BCG-driven immunity is insufficient to protect the human population against tuberculosis. In this study we constructed recombinant BCG producing human IL-18 (rBCGhIL-18) and investigated whether human IL-18 produced by rBCGhIL-18 modulates DC functions and enhances Th1 responses to mycobacterial antigens in humans. We found that the costimulatory CD86 and CD80 molecules were significantly upregulated on rBCGhIL-18-infected DCs, whereas the stimulation of DCs with nonrecombinant BCG was less effective. In contrast, both BCG strains decreased the DC-SIGN expression on human DCs. The rBCGhIL-18 increased IL-23, IL-10, and IP-10 production by DCs to a greater extent than nonrecombinant BCG. In a coculture system of CD4+ T cells and loaded DCs, rBCGhIL-18 favoured strong IFN-γ but also IL-10 production by naive T cells but not by memory T cells. This was much less the case for nonrecombinant BCG. Thus the expression of IL-18 by recombinant BCG increases IL-23, IP-10, and IL-10 expression by human DCs and enhances their ability to induce IFN-γ and IL-10 expression by naive T cells, without affecting the maturation phenotype of the DCs. Piotr Szpakowski, Franck Biet, Camille Locht, Małgorzata Paszkiewicz, Wiesława Rudnicka, Magdalena Druszczyńska, Fabrice Allain, Marek Fol, Joël Pestel, and Magdalena Kowalewicz-Kulbat Copyright © 2015 Piotr Szpakowski et al. All rights reserved. γ-Secretase Inhibitor Alleviates Acute Airway Inflammation of Allergic Asthma in Mice by Downregulating Th17 Cell Differentiation Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:17:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/258168/ T helper 17 (Th17) cells play an important role in the pathogenesis of allergic asthma. Th17 cell differentiation requires Notch signaling. γ-Secretase inhibitor (GSI) blocks Notch signaling; thus, it may be considered as a potential treatment for allergic asthma. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of GSI on Th17 cell differentiation in a mouse model of allergic asthma. OVA was used to induce mouse asthma model in the presence and absence of GSI. GSI ameliorated the development of OVA-induced asthma, including suppressing airway inflammation responses and reducing the severity of clinical signs. GSI also significantly suppressed Th17-cell responses in spleen and reduced IL-17 levels in serum. These findings suggest that GSI directly regulates Th17 responses through a Notch signaling-dependent pathway in mouse model of allergic asthma, supporting the notion that GSI is a potential therapeutic agent for the treatment of allergic asthma. Weixi Zhang, Xueya Zhang, Anqun Sheng, Cuiye Weng, Tingting Zhu, Wei Zhao, and Changchong Li Copyright © 2015 Weixi Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Evaluation of Anti-TBGL Antibody in the Diagnosis of Tuberculosis Patients in China Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:12:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2015/834749/ Tuberculous glycolipid (TBGL) is a component of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis cell wall, and anti-TBGL antibodies are used for serodiagnosis of tuberculosis. Anti-TBGL IgG and IgA levels were measured in 45 pulmonary TB patients (PTB), 26 extra-pulmonary TB patients (ETB), 16 AIDS-TB patients, and 58 healthy controls (HC) including 39 health care workers (HW) and 19 newly enrolled students (ST). Anti-TBGL IgG measurements yielded 68.9% and 46.2% sensitivity in PTB and ETB, respectively, and 81.0% specificity. However, anti-TBGL IgA measurements were significantly less sensitive in detecting ETB than PTB (15.4% versus 46.7% sensitivity) but showed up to 89.7% specificity. Samples from AIDS-TB patients exhibited low reaction of anti-TBGL IgG and IgA with 6.3% and 12.5% sensitivity, respectively. Unlike anti-lipoarabinomannan (LAM) IgG that was found to elevate in sputum smearpositive subjects, anti-TBGL IgG and IgA elevated in those with cavitation and bronchiectasis, respectively. Anti-TBGL IgG in cavitary TB yielded 78.2% sensitivity compared to 57.1% in those otherwise. Meanwhile, higher anti-TBGL IgA titers were observed in HW than in ST, and increasing anti-TBGL IgG titers were observed in HW on follow-up. Therefore, higher anti-TBGL antibody titers are present in patients presenting cavities and bronchiectasis and subjects under TB exposure risk. Jingge Zhao, Zhaoqin Zhu, Xiaoyan Zhang, Yasuhiko Suzuki, Haorile Chagan-Yasutan, Haili Chen, Yanmin Wan, Jianqing Xu, Yugo Ashino, and Toshio Hattori Copyright © 2015 Jingge Zhao et al. All rights reserved. Symmetry Based Automatic Evolution of Clusters: A New Approach to Data Clustering Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:11:10 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/796276/ We present a multiobjective genetic clustering approach, in which data points are assigned to clusters based on new line symmetry distance. The proposed algorithm is called multiobjective line symmetry based genetic clustering (MOLGC). Two objective functions, first the Davies-Bouldin (DB) index and second the line symmetry distance based objective functions, are used. The proposed algorithm evolves near-optimal clustering solutions using multiple clustering criteria, without a priori knowledge of the actual number of clusters. The multiple randomized K dimensional (Kd) trees based nearest neighbor search is used to reduce the complexity of finding the closest symmetric points. Experimental results based on several artificial and real data sets show that proposed clustering algorithm can obtain optimal clustering solutions in terms of different cluster quality measures in comparison to existing SBKM and MOCK clustering algorithms. Singh Vijendra and Sahoo Laxman Copyright © 2015 Singh Vijendra and Sahoo Laxman. All rights reserved. Exercise Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease in Breast Cancer Survivors Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:08:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jo/2015/917606/ Thanks to increasingly effective treatment, breast cancer mortality rates have significantly declined over the past few decades. Following the increase in life expectancy of women diagnosed with breast cancer, it has been recognized that these women are at an elevated risk for cardiovascular disease due in part to the cardiotoxic side effects of treatment. This paper reviews evidence for the role of exercise in prevention of cardiovascular toxicity associated with chemotherapy used in breast cancer, and in modifying cardiovascular risk factors in breast cancer survivors. There is growing evidence indicating that the primary mechanism for this protective effect appears to be improved antioxidant capacity in the heart and vasculature and subsequent reduction of treatment-related oxidative stress in these structures. Further clinical research is needed to determine whether exercise is a feasible and effective nonpharmacological treatment to reduce cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in breast cancer survivors, to identify the cancer therapies for which it is effective, and to determine the optimal exercise dose. Safe and noninvasive measures that are sensitive to changes in cardiovascular function are required to answer these questions in patient populations. Cardiac strain, endothelial function, and cardiac biomarkers are suggested outcome measures for clinical research in this field. Amy A. Kirkham and Margot K. Davis Copyright © 2015 Amy A. Kirkham and Margot K. Davis. All rights reserved. Multifunctional Analysis of CD4+ T-Cell Response as Immune-Based Model for Tuberculosis Detection Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:08:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2015/217287/ Mono- and multifunctional specific CD4+ and CD8+ T-cell responses were evaluated to improve the immune-based detection of active tuberculosis (TB) and latent infection (LTBI). We applied flow cytometry to investigate cytokines profile (IFN-γ, TNF-α, and IL-2) of T cells after stimulation with TB antigens in 28 TB-infected subjects (18 active TB and 10 LTBI) and 10 uninfected controls. Cytokines production by CD4+ T cells at single-cell levels was higher in TB-infected subjects than uninfected controls . Assigning to activated CD4+ T cells, producing any of the three cytokines, a cut-off >0.45%, it was possible to differentiate TB-infected (>0.45%) by uninfected subjects (<0.45%). Among TB-infected subjects, the frequencies of multifunctional CD4+ T cells, simultaneously producing all 3 cytokines, are lower in active TB than LTBI subjects . Thus, assigning to triple-positive CD4+ T cells a cut-off <0.182%, TB-infected individuals could be classified as active TB subjects (<0.182%) or LTBI subjects (>0.182%). The magnitude of CD8+ T-cell responses showed no differences between active TB and LTBI. Multifunctional CD4+ T-cell responses could have the potential to identify at single time point subjects without TB infection and patients having active or latent TB. Miriam Lichtner, Claudia Mascia, Ilaria Sauzullo, Fabio Mengoni, Serena Vita, Raffaella Marocco, Valeria Belvisi, Gianluca Russo, Vincenzo Vullo, and Claudio M. Mastroianni Copyright © 2015 Miriam Lichtner et al. All rights reserved. Rough Multilinear Fractional Integrals on Weighted Morrey Spaces Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:08:04 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jfs/2015/731487/ It is showed that a class of multilinear fractional operators with rough kernels, which are similar to the higher-order commutators for the rough fractional integrals, are bounded on the weighted Morrey spaces. Xiao Li and Runqing Cui Copyright © 2015 Xiao Li and Runqing Cui. All rights reserved. Optimization of High-Dimensional Functions through Hypercube Evaluation Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:08:02 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/967320/ A novel learning algorithm for solving global numerical optimization problems is proposed. The proposed learning algorithm is intense stochastic search method which is based on evaluation and optimization of a hypercube and is called the hypercube optimization (HO) algorithm. The HO algorithm comprises the initialization and evaluation process, displacement-shrink process, and searching space process. The initialization and evaluation process initializes initial solution and evaluates the solutions in given hypercube. The displacement-shrink process determines displacement and evaluates objective functions using new points, and the search area process determines next hypercube using certain rules and evaluates the new solutions. The algorithms for these processes have been designed and presented in the paper. The designed HO algorithm is tested on specific benchmark functions. The simulations of HO algorithm have been performed for optimization of functions of 1000-, 5000-, or even 10000 dimensions. The comparative simulation results with other approaches demonstrate that the proposed algorithm is a potential candidate for optimization of both low and high dimensional functions. Rahib H. Abiyev and Mustafa Tunay Copyright © 2015 Rahib H. Abiyev and Mustafa Tunay. All rights reserved. Phase Response Design of Recursive All-Pass Digital Filters Using a Modified PSO Algorithm Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:07:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/638068/ This paper develops a new design scheme for the phase response of an all-pass recursive digital filter. A variant of particle swarm optimization (PSO) algorithm will be utilized for solving this kind of filter design problem. It is here called the modified PSO (MPSO) algorithm in which another adjusting factor is more introduced in the velocity updating formula of the algorithm in order to improve the searching ability. In the proposed method, all of the designed filter coefficients are firstly collected to be a parameter vector and this vector is regarded as a particle of the algorithm. The MPSO with a modified velocity formula will force all particles into moving toward the optimal or near optimal solution by minimizing some defined objective function of the optimization problem. To show the effectiveness of the proposed method, two different kinds of linear phase response design examples are illustrated and the general PSO algorithm is compared as well. The obtained results show that the MPSO is superior to the general PSO for the phase response design of digital recursive all-pass filter. Wei-Der Chang Copyright © 2015 Wei-Der Chang. All rights reserved. Setting Reaction of Dental Resin-Modified Glass Ionomer Restoratives as a Function of Curing Depth and Postirradiation Time Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:07:12 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/462687/ Specular reflectance Fourier transform infrared (SR-FTIR) spectroscopy was used to study the setting reaction of dental resin-modified glass ionomer (RMGI) restoratives as a function of curing depth and postirradiation time. Two light-cure and one tri-cure RMGI materials were selected and used according to the manufacturers’ instructions. Samples were prepared by filling the mixed materials into custom-made molds and then light-irradiating using a dental curing light. The degree of conversion and the extent of acid-base reaction of the materials at different depths (0, 1, 2, and 4 mm) and postirradiation times (10 min, 1 day, and 7 days) were determined using SR-FTIR spectroscopy in conjunction with the Kramers-Kronig (K-K) transformation. The setting reaction was also investigated using microhardness measurements. The results showed that the depth of cure increased over time by the continuous acid-base reaction rather than photopolymerization or chemical polymerization. Microhardness tests seemed less suitable for studying the setting reaction as a function of postirradiation time, probably due to softening from the humidity. Analysis using specular reflectance in conjunction with the K-K algorithm was an easy and effective method for monitoring the setting reaction of dental RMGI materials. Young Kyung Kim, Kyo-Han Kim, and Tae-Yub Kwon Copyright © 2015 Young Kyung Kim et al. All rights reserved. A Multiuser Manufacturing Resource Service Composition Method Based on the Bees Algorithm Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:06:35 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/780352/ In order to realize an optimal resource service allocation in current open and service-oriented manufacturing model, multiuser resource service composition (RSC) is modeled as a combinational and constrained multiobjective problem. The model takes into account both subjective and objective quality of service (QoS) properties as representatives to evaluate a solution. The QoS properties aggregation and evaluation techniques are based on existing researches. The basic Bees Algorithm is tailored for finding a near optimal solution to the model, since the basic version is only proposed to find a desired solution in continuous domain and thus not suitable for solving the problem modeled in our study. Particular rules are designed for handling the constraints and finding Pareto optimality. In addition, the established model introduces a trusted service set to each user so that the algorithm could start by searching in the neighbor of more reliable service chains (known as seeds) than those randomly generated. The advantages of these techniques are validated by experiments in terms of success rate, searching speed, ability of avoiding ingenuity, and so forth. The results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method in handling multiuser RSC problems. Yongquan Xie, Zude Zhou, Duc Truong Pham, Wenjun Xu, and Chunqian Ji Copyright © 2015 Yongquan Xie et al. All rights reserved. Bisphenol A Effects on Mammalian Oogenesis and Epigenetic Integrity of Oocytes: A Case Study Exploring Risks of Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:04:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/698795/ Bisphenol A (BPA), originally developed as a synthetic oestrogen, is nowadays extensively used in the production of polymeric plastics. Under harsh conditions, these plastics may release BPA, which then can leach into the environment. Detectable concentrations of BPA have been measured in most analysed samples of human serum, plasma, or urine, as well as in follicular fluid, foetal serum, and amniotic fluid. Here we summarize the evidence about adverse BPA effects on the genetic and epigenetic integrity of mammalian oocytes. We conclude that increasing evidence supports the notion that low BPA concentrations adversely affect the epigenome of mammalian female germ cells, with functional consequences on gene expression, chromosome dynamics in meiosis, and oocyte development. Specific time windows, during which profound chromatin remodelling occurs and maternal imprints are established or protected, appear particularly vulnerable to epigenetic deregulation by BPA. Transgenerational effects have been also observed in the offspring of BPA-treated rodents, although the epigenetic mechanisms of inheritance still need to be clarified. The relevance of these findings for human health protection still needs to be fully assessed, but they warrant further investigation in both experimental models and humans. Ursula Eichenlaub-Ritter and Francesca Pacchierotti Copyright © 2015 Ursula Eichenlaub-Ritter and Francesca Pacchierotti. All rights reserved. Incremental Discriminant Analysis in Tensor Space Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:03:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/587923/ To study incremental machine learning in tensor space, this paper proposes incremental tensor discriminant analysis. The algorithm employs tensor representation to carry on discriminant analysis and combine incremental learning to alleviate the computational cost. This paper proves that the algorithm can be unified into the graph framework theoretically and analyzes the time and space complexity in detail. The experiments on facial image detection have shown that the algorithm not only achieves sound performance compared with other algorithms, but also reduces the computational issues apparently. Liu Chang, Zhao Weidong, Yan Tao, Pu Qiang, and Du Xiaodan Copyright © 2015 Liu Chang et al. All rights reserved. ZnO Nanoparticles Treatment Induces Apoptosis by Increasing Intracellular ROS Levels in LTEP-a-2 Cells Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:02:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/423287/ Owing to the wide use of novel nanoparticles (NPs) such as zinc oxide (ZnO) in all aspects of life, toxicological research on ZnO NPs is receiving increasing attention in these days. In this study, the toxicity of ZnO NPs in a human pulmonary adenocarcinoma cell line LTEP-a-2 was tested in vitro. Log-phase cells were exposed to different levels of ZnO NPs for hours, followed by colorimetric cell viability assay using tetrazolium salt and cell survival rate assay using trypan blue dye. Cell morphological changes were observed by Giemsa staining and light microscopy. Apoptosis was detected by using fluorescence microscopy and caspase-3 activity assay. Both intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reduced glutathione (GSH) were examined by a microplate-reader method. Results showed that ZnO NPs (≥0.01 μg/mL) significantly inhibited proliferation () and induced substantial apoptosis in LTEP-a-2 cells after 4 h of exposure. The intracellular ROS level rose up to 30–40% corresponding to significant depletion (approximately 70–80%) in GSH content in LTEP-a-2 cells (), suggesting that ZnO NPs induced apoptosis mainly through increased ROS production. This study elucidates the toxicological mechanism of ZnO NPs in human pulmonary adenocarcinoma cells and provides reference data for application of nanomaterials in the environment. Caixia Wang, Xiaoke Hu, Yan Gao, and Yinglu Ji Copyright © 2015 Caixia Wang et al. All rights reserved. Application of -Number Based Modeling in Psychological Research Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:52:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/760403/ Pilates exercises have been shown beneficial impact on physical, physiological, and mental characteristics of human beings. In this paper, Z-number based fuzzy approach is applied for modeling the effect of Pilates exercises on motivation, attention, anxiety, and educational achievement. The measuring of psychological parameters is performed using internationally recognized instruments: Academic Motivation Scale (AMS), Test of Attention (D2 Test), and Spielberger’s Anxiety Test completed by students. The GPA of students was used as the measure of educational achievement. Application of Z-information modeling allows us to increase precision and reliability of data processing results in the presence of uncertainty of input data created from completed questionnaires. The basic steps of Z-number based modeling with numerical solutions are presented. Rafik Aliev and Konul Memmedova Copyright © 2015 Rafik Aliev and Konul Memmedova. All rights reserved. Complete Coefficient Criteria for Five-Dimensional Hopf Bifurcations, with an Application to Economic Dynamics Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:51:57 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jndy/2015/278234/ Paper presents a complete mathematical characterization of coefficient criteria for five-dimensional Hopf bifurcations and an example of the application of these criteria to a model of economic dynamics. The application illustrates that the proposed criteria are practical and useful in determining the existence or nonexistence of Hopf bifurcations of five-dimensional dynamical systems in entire ranges of the system’s parameters. Christos Douskos and Panagiotis Markellos Copyright © 2015 Christos Douskos and Panagiotis Markellos. All rights reserved. Predictive Modeling in Race Walking Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:51:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2015/735060/ This paper presents the use of linear and nonlinear multivariable models as tools to support training process of race walkers. These models are calculated using data collected from race walkers’ training events and they are used to predict the result over a 3 km race based on training loads. The material consists of 122 training plans for 21 athletes. In order to choose the best model leave-one-out cross-validation method is used. The main contribution of the paper is to propose the nonlinear modifications for linear models in order to achieve smaller prediction error. It is shown that the best model is a modified LASSO regression with quadratic terms in the nonlinear part. This model has the smallest prediction error and simplified structure by eliminating some of the predictors. Krzysztof Wiktorowicz, Krzysztof Przednowek, Lesław Lassota, and Tomasz Krzeszowski Copyright © 2015 Krzysztof Wiktorowicz et al. All rights reserved. Elevated Serum Levels of Soluble TNF Receptors and Adhesion Molecules Are Associated with Diabetic Retinopathy in Patients with Type-1 Diabetes Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:40:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/279393/ Aims. To examine the association of the serum levels of TNF receptors, adhesion molecules, and inflammatory mediators with diabetic retinopathy (DR) in T1D patients. Methods. Using the multiplex immunoassay, we measured serum levels of eight proteins in 678 T1D subjects aged 20–75 years. Comparisons were made between 482 T1D patients with no complications and 196 T1D patients with DR. Results. The levels of sTNFR-I, sTNFR-II, CRP, SAA, sgp130, sIL6R, sVCAM1, and sICAM1 were significantly higher in the T1D patients with DR as compared to T1D patients with no complications. Multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed significant association for five proteins after adjustment for age, sex, and disease duration (sTNFR-I: , sgp130: , sVCAM1: , sICAM1: , and CRP: ). Conditional logistic regression on matched paired data revealed that subjects in the top quartile for sTNFR-I , sTNFR-II , sgp130 , sIL6R , sVCAM1 , sICAM1 , CRP and SAA , had the highest odds of having DR. Conclusions. The circulating markers of inflammation, endothelial injury, and TNF signaling are significantly associated with DR in patients with T1D. TNFR-I and TNFR-II receptors are highly correlated, but DR associated more strongly with TNFR-I in these patients. Shruti Sharma, Sharad Purohit, Ashok Sharma, Diane Hopkins, Leigh Steed, Bruce Bode, Stephen W. Anderson, Ruth Caldwell, and Jin-Xiong She Copyright © 2015 Shruti Sharma et al. All rights reserved. Serum Vitamin A and Inflammatory Markers in Individuals with and without Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:30:47 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/862086/ Background. Vitamin A is essential for the preservation and integrity of the lung epithelium and exerts anti-inflammatory effects. Objective. Evaluating vitamin A in the serum and sputum and testing its correlation with inflammatory markers in individuals with or without COPD. Methods. We evaluated dietary intake, serum and sputum vitamin A, tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin- (IL-) 6, IL-8, and C-reactive protein in 50 COPD patients (age = 64.0 ± 8.8 y; FEV1 (forced expiratory volume in the first second) (%) = 49.8 ± 16.8) and 50 controls (age = 48.5 ± 7.4 y; FEV1 (%) = 110.0 ± 15.7). Results. COPD exhibited lower serum vitamin A (1.8 (1.2–2.1) versus 2.1 (1.8–2.4) μmol/L, ) and lower vitamin A intake (636.9 (339.6–1349.6) versus 918.0 (592.1–1654.6) RAE, ) when compared with controls. Sputum concentration of vitamin A was not different between groups. Sputum vitamin A and neutrophils were negatively correlated (; ). Smoking (0.197, ) exhibited positive association with serum vitamin A. COPD was associated with lower serum concentrations of vitamin A without relationship with the systemic inflammation. Conclusions. Serum concentration of vitamin A is negatively associated with the presence of COPD and positively associated with smoking status. Sputum retinol is quantifiable and is negatively influenced by neutrophils. Although COPD patients exhibited increased inflammation it was not associated with serum retinol. L. M. O. Caram, R. A. F. Amaral, R. Ferrari, S. E. Tanni, C. R. Correa, S. A. R. Paiva, and I. Godoy Copyright © 2015 L. M. O. Caram et al. All rights reserved. Systematic Review of Adverse Effects: A Further Step towards Modernization of Acupuncture in China Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:26:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/432467/ As a further step towards the modernization of acupuncture, the objective of this review was to figure out the frequency and severity of adverse complications and events in acupuncture treatment reported from 1980 to 2013 in China. All first-hand case reports of acupuncture-related complications and adverse events that could be identified in the scientific literature were reviewed and classified according to the type of complication and adverse event, circumstance of the event, and long-term patient outcome. The selected case reports were published between 1980 and 2013 in 3 databases. Relevant papers were collected and analyzed by 2 reviewers. Over the 33 years, 182 incidents were identified in 133 relevant papers. Internal organ, tissue, or nerve injury is the main complications of acupuncture especially for pneumothorax and central nervous system injury. Adverse effects also included syncope, infections, hemorrhage, allergy, burn, aphonia, hysteria, cough, thirst, fever, somnolence, and broken needles. Qualifying training of acupuncturists should be systemized and the clinical acupuncture operations should be standardized in order to effectively prevent the occurrence of acupuncture accidents, enhance the influence of acupuncture, and further popularize acupuncture to the rest of the world. Junyi Wu, Yanmei Hu, Yin Zhu, Ping Yin, Gerhard Litscher, and Shifen Xu Copyright © 2015 Junyi Wu et al. All rights reserved. The Pharmacokinetic Profile of a New Gastroresistant Capsule Preparation of Eicosapentaenoic Acid as the Free Fatty Acid Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:25:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/360825/ Supplementation with n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) may be beneficial for patients with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). In this study we analyzed the pharmacokinetic profile of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), as the free fatty acid (FFA), in an enteric-coated preparation, in 10 ulcerative colitis (UC) and 10 Crohn’s disease (CD) patients and 15 healthy volunteers (HV). Subjects received 2 g daily of EPA-FFA for 8 weeks. Plasma phospholipid and red blood cell (RBC) membrane fatty acid content were measured by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. There was a rapid incorporation of EPA into plasma phospholipids by 2 weeks and a slower, but highly consistent, incorporation into RBC membranes (4% total fatty acid content; coefficient of variation 10–16%). There was a concomitant reduction in relative n-6 PUFA content. Elongation and desaturation of EPA into docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) via docosapentaenoic acid (DPA) were apparent and DHA content also increased in membranes. EPA-FFA is well tolerated and no difference in the pharmacokinetic profile of n-3 PUFA incorporation was detected between IBD patients and HV. Our data support the concept that EPA can be considered the “universal donor” with respect to key n-3 PUFAs and that this enteric-coated formulation allows long term treatment with a high level of compliance. Eleonora Scaioli, Carla Cardamone, Elisa Liverani, Alessandra Munarini, Mark A. Hull, and Andrea Belluzzi Copyright © 2015 Eleonora Scaioli et al. All rights reserved. Immunosuppressive Drugs Affect High-Mannose/Hybrid N-Glycans on Human Allostimulated Leukocytes Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:24:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/acp/2015/324980/ N-glycosylation plays an important role in the majority of physiological and pathological processes occurring in the immune system. Alteration of the type and abundance of glycans is an element of lymphocyte differentiation; it is also common in the development of immune-mediated inflammatory diseases. The N-glycosylation process is very sensitive to different environmental agents, among them the pharmacological environment of immunosuppressive drugs. Some results show that high-mannose oligosaccharides have the ability to suppress different stages of the immune response. We evaluated the effects of cyclosporin A (CsA) and rapamycin (Rapa) on high-mannose/hybrid-type glycosylation in human leukocytes activated in a two-way mixed leukocyte reaction (MLR). CsA significantly reduced the number of leukocytes covered by high-mannose/hybrid N-glycans, and the synergistic action of CsA and Rapa led to an increase of these structures on the remaining leukocytes. This is the first study indicating that β1 and β3 integrins bearing high-mannose/hybrid structures are affected by Rapa and CsA. Rapa taken separately and together with CsA changed the expression of β1 and β3 integrins and, by regulating the protein amount, increased the oligomannose/hybrid-type N-glycosylation on the leukocyte surface. We suggest that the changes in the glycosylation profile of leukocytes may promote the development of tolerance in transplantation. Ewa Pocheć, Katarzyna Bocian, Marta Ząbczyńska, Grażyna Korczak-Kowalska, and Anna Lityńska Copyright © 2015 Ewa Pocheć et al. All rights reserved. Neuroimaging and Neuromonitoring Effects of Electro and Manual Acupuncture on the Central Nervous System: A Literature Review and Analysis Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:23:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2015/641742/ The aim of this review is to provide an overview of the different effects of manual and electroacupuncture on the central nervous system in studies with different neuroimaging interventions. The Database PubMed was searched from 1/1/2000 to 1/6/2014 with restriction to human studies in English language. Data collection for functional magnetic resonance (fMRI) studies was restricted to the period from 1/1/2010 to 1/6/2014 due to a recently published review which included all published randomized and nonrandomized controlled clinical studies as well as observational studies with control groups, no blinding required. Only studies comparing manual or electroacupuncture with sham acupuncture were eligible. All participants were healthy adult men and women. A majority of 25 studies compared manual versus sham, a minority of 7 trials compared electro versus sham and only 1 study compared electro versus manual acupuncture. In 29 out of 33 studies verum acupuncture results were found to present either more or different modulation effects on neurological components measured by neuroimaging and neuromonitoring methods than sham acupuncture. Only four studies reported no effects of verum in comparison to sham acupuncture. Evaluation of the very heterogeneous results shows evidence that verum acupuncture elicits more modulation effects on neurological components than sham acupuncture. Brigitte Elisabeth Scheffold, Ching-Liang Hsieh, and Gerhard Litscher Copyright © 2015 Brigitte Elisabeth Scheffold et al. All rights reserved. Environmental Impact on DNA Methylation in the Germline: State of the Art and Gaps of Knowledge Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:17:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/123484/ The epigenome consists of chemical changes in DNA and chromatin that without modifying the DNA sequence modulate gene expression and cellular phenotype. The epigenome is highly plastic and reacts to changing external conditions with modifications that can be inherited to daughter cells and across generations. Whereas this innate plasticity allows for adaptation to a changing environment, it also implies the potential of epigenetic derailment leading to so-called epimutations. DNA methylation is the most studied epigenetic mark. DNA methylation changes have been associated with cancer, infertility, cardiovascular, respiratory, metabolic, immunologic, and neurodegenerative pathologies. Experiments in rodents demonstrate that exposure to a variety of chemical stressors, occurring during the prenatal or the adult life, may induce DNA methylation changes in germ cells, which may be transmitted across generations with phenotypic consequences. An increasing number of human biomonitoring studies show environmentally related DNA methylation changes mainly in blood leukocytes, whereas very few data have been so far collected on possible epigenetic changes induced in the germline, even by the analysis of easily accessible sperm. In this paper, we review the state of the art on factors impinging on DNA methylation in the germline, highlight gaps of knowledge, and propose priorities for future studies. Francesca Pacchierotti and Marcello Spanò Copyright © 2015 Francesca Pacchierotti and Marcello Spanò. All rights reserved. Prognostic Value of MRS Metabolites in Postoperative Irradiated High Grade Gliomas Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:13:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/341042/ Purpose. We studied the prognostic significance of Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (MRS) in operated high grade gliomas. Materials and Methods. Twelve patients were treated with radiotherapy and Temozolomide. The MRS data were taken four weeks after operation (before radiotherapy) and every six months after the completion of RT. The N-acetyl aspartate, choline, creatine, and myo-inositol parameters were quantified, analyzed, and correlated to recurrence-free survival (RFS). Results. The median RFS was 26.06 months. RFS was significantly worse in elderly patients along with the higher choline/creatine ratios at either baseline or six months post Radiotherapy . Median RFS was 23 months in high choline/creatine levels ≥2 at 6 months after radiotherapy and 11 months for those with <2 choline/creatine levels. There was a significant correlation of maximum difference of choline/creatine ratio with RFS (rho = 0.64, ). Conclusion. Age and choline/creatine ratio are strong independent prognostic factors in high grade gliomas. Maria Tolia, Dimitrios Verganelakis, Nikolaos Tsoukalas, George Kyrgias, Matilda Papathanasiou, Eftichia Mosa, Ioannis Kokakis, John R. Kouvaris, George Pissakas, Kyriaki Pistevou-Gombaki, Nikolaos Kelekis, and Vasileios Kouloulias Copyright © 2015 Maria Tolia et al. All rights reserved. The Application of Classification and Regression Trees for the Triage of Women for Referral to Colposcopy and the Estimation of Risk for Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia: A Study Based on 1625 Cases with Incomplete Data from Molecular Tests Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:12:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/914740/ Objective. Nowadays numerous ancillary techniques detecting HPV DNA and mRNA compete with cytology; however no perfect test exists; in this study we evaluated classification and regression trees (CARTs) for the production of triage rules and estimate the risk for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) in cases with ASCUS+ in cytology. Study Design. We used 1625 cases. In contrast to other approaches we used missing data to increase the data volume, obtain more accurate results, and simulate real conditions in the everyday practice of gynecologic clinics and laboratories. The proposed CART was based on the cytological result, HPV DNA typing, HPV mRNA detection based on NASBA and flow cytometry, p16 immunocytochemical expression, and finally age and parous status. Results. Algorithms useful for the triage of women were produced; gynecologists could apply these in conjunction with available examination results and conclude to an estimation of the risk for a woman to harbor CIN expressed as a probability. Conclusions. The most important test was the cytological examination; however the CART handled cases with inadequate cytological outcome and increased the diagnostic accuracy by exploiting the results of ancillary techniques even if there were inadequate missing data. The CART performance was better than any other single test involved in this study. Abraham Pouliakis, Efrossyni Karakitsou, Charalampos Chrelias, Asimakis Pappas, Ioannis Panayiotides, George Valasoulis, Maria Kyrgiou, Evangelos Paraskevaidis, and Petros Karakitsos Copyright © 2015 Abraham Pouliakis et al. All rights reserved. Synthesis and Characterization of an Iron Nitride Constructed by a Novel Template of Metal Organic Framework Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:12:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2015/362103/ An iron nitride with high surface area was synthesized from an iron-based metal organic framework (Fe-MOF) in this work. During the synthesis process, the Fe-MOF of MIL-53 served as a hard template, a template to impart a certain degree of morphology for iron oxide products and to form porosities for iron nitride products. Moreover, it played the roles of iron sources for the synthesis of the final iron oxides and the iron nitrides. The physicochemical properties of the materials were characterized by a series of technologies including XRD, SEM, and N2-adsorption/desorption. The results showed that the iron nitride synthesized from MIL-53 was α-N. And, the α-N showed the morphology with loosely aggregated particles which favored the formation of rich interparticle porosities. As a result, the surface area of the α-N was larger than those of samples using α-Fe2O3 as precursors and its value was 41 m2/g. In addition, the results agreed that both raw material properties (such as crystallinity and surface areas) and nitriding approaches had significant effects on the surface areas of iron nitrides. Also the results were proved by the iron oxide synthesized with different methods. This new synthetic strategy could be a general approach for the preparation of late transition metal nitrides with peculiar properties. Suyan Liu, Quan Huo, Rongna Chen, Peipei Chen, Yuan Li, and Yang Han Copyright © 2015 Suyan Liu et al. All rights reserved. LPA Promotes T Cell Recruitment through Synthesis of CXCL13 Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:10:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2015/248492/ Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) is a bioactive phospholipid playing an important role in various inflammatory diseases by inducing expression and secretion of many inflammatory cytokines/chemokines. Here we report in a murine air pouch model of inflammation that LPA induced CXCL13 secretion in a time-dependent manner and with exacerbation of the response when LPA was administered after a pretreatment with TNF-α, a key inflammatory cytokine. LPA mediates recruitment of leukocytes, including that of CD3+ cells into unprimed and TNF-α-primed air pouches. CXCL13 neutralization using a blocking antibody injected into air pouches prior to administration of LPA into TNF-α-primed air pouches decreased CD3+ cell influx. Our data highlight that LPA-mediated CXCL13 secretion plays a role in T cell recruitment and participates in regulation of the inflammatory response. Weili Hui, Chenqi Zhao, and Sylvain G. Bourgoin Copyright © 2015 Weili Hui et al. All rights reserved. Rat Nasal Respiratory Mucosa-Derived Ectomesenchymal Stem Cells Differentiate into Schwann-Like Cells Promoting the Differentiation of PC12 Cells and Forming Myelin In Vitro Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:09:16 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2015/328957/ Schwann cell (SC) transplantation as a cell-based therapy can enhance peripheral and central nerve repair experimentally, but it is limited by the donor site morbidity for clinical application. We investigated weather respiratory mucosa stem cells (REMSCs), a kind of ectomesenchymal stem cells (EMSCs), isolated from rat nasal septum can differentiate into functional Schwann-like cells (SC-like cells). REMSCs proliferated quickly in vitro and expressed the neural crest markers (nestin, vimentin, SOX10, and CD44). Treated with a mixture of glial growth factors for 7 days, REMSCs differentiated into SC-like cells. The differentiated REMSCs (dREMSCs) exhibited a spindle-like morphology similar to SC cells. Immunocytochemical staining and Western blotting indicated that SC-like cells expressed the glial markers (GFAP, S100β, Galc, and P75) and CNPase. When cocultured with dREMSCs for 5 days, PC12 cells differentiated into mature neuron-like cells with long neurites. More importantly, dREMSCs could form myelin structures with the neurites of PC12 cells at 21 days in vitro. Our data indicated that REMSCs, a kind of EMSCs, could differentiate into SC-like cells and have the ability to promote the differentiation of PC12 cells and form myelin in vitro. Jian Zhang, Xin Gao, Hongjun Zou, Jinbo Liu, and Zhijian Zhang Copyright © 2015 Jian Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Cells Inhibit the Differentiation of Bone Mesenchymal Stem Cells into Osteoblasts In Vitro by Activating Notch Signaling Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:08:14 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/sci/2015/162410/ The disruption of normal hematopoiesis has been observed in leukemia, but the mechanism is unclear. Osteoblasts originate from bone mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) and can maintain normal hematopoiesis. To investigate how leukemic cells inhibit the osteogenic differentiation of BMSCs and the role of Notch signaling in this process, we cocultured BMSCs with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) cells in osteogenic induction medium. The expression levels of Notch1, Hes1, and the osteogenic markers Runx2, Osteopontin (OPN), and Osteocalcin (OCN) were assessed by real-time RT-PCR and western blotting on day 3. Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity was analyzed using an ALP kit, and mineralization deposits were detected by Alizarin red S staining on day 14. And then we treated BMSCs with Jagged1 and anti-Jagged1 neutralizing Ab. The expression of Notch1, Hes1, and the abovementioned osteogenic differentiation markers was measured. Inhibition of the expression of Runx2, OPN, and OCN and reduction of ALP activity and mineralization deposits were observed in BMSCs cocultured with ALL cells, while Notch signal inhibiting rescued these effects. All these results indicated that ALL cells could inhibit the osteogenic differentiation of BMSCs by activating Notch signaling, resulting in a decreased number of osteoblastic cells, which may impair normal hematopoiesis. Gui-Cun Yang, You-Hua Xu, Hong-Xia Chen, and Xiao-Jing Wang Copyright © 2015 Gui-Cun Yang et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Dietary ω-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid DHA on Glycolytic Enzymes and Warburg Phenotypes in Cancer Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:08:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/137097/ The omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFAs) are a class of lipids that has been shown to have beneficial effects on some chronic degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory disorders, diabetes, and cancer. Among ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) has received particular attention for its antiproliferative, proapoptotic, antiangiogenetic, anti-invasion, and antimetastatic properties, even though the involved molecular mechanisms are not well understood. Recently, some in vitro studies showed that DHA promotes the inhibition of glycolytic enzymes and the Warburg phenotype. For example, it was shown that in breast cancer cell lines the modulation of bioenergetic functions is due to the capacity of DHA to activate the AMPK signalling and negatively regulate the HIF-1α functions. Taking into account these considerations, this review is focused on current knowledge concerning the role of DHA in interfering with cancer cell metabolism; this could be considered a further mechanism by which DHA inhibits cancer cell survival and progression. Laura Manzi, Lara Costantini, Romina Molinari, and Nicolò Merendino Copyright © 2015 Laura Manzi et al. All rights reserved. Similarities in Gene Expression Profiles during In Vitro Aging of Primary Human Embryonic Lung and Foreskin Fibroblasts Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:07:15 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/731938/ Replicative senescence is of fundamental importance for the process of cellular aging, since it is a property of most of our somatic cells. Here, we elucidated this process by comparing gene expression changes, measured by RNA-seq, in fibroblasts originating from two different tissues, embryonic lung (MRC-5) and foreskin (HFF), at five different time points during their transition into senescence. Although the expression patterns of both fibroblast cell lines can be clearly distinguished, the similar differential expression of an ensemble of genes was found to correlate well with their transition into senescence, with only a minority of genes being cell line specific. Clustering-based approaches further revealed common signatures between the cell lines. Investigation of the mRNA expression levels at various time points during the lifespan of either of the fibroblasts resulted in a number of monotonically up- and downregulated genes which clearly showed a novel strong link to aging and senescence related processes which might be functional. In terms of expression profiles of differentially expressed genes with age, common genes identified here have the potential to rule the transition into senescence of embryonic lung and foreskin fibroblasts irrespective of their different cellular origin. Shiva Marthandan, Steffen Priebe, Mario Baumgart, Marco Groth, Alessandro Cellerino, Reinhard Guthke, Peter Hemmerich, and Stephan Diekmann Copyright © 2015 Shiva Marthandan et al. All rights reserved. Cytoglobin as a Biomarker in Cancer: Potential Perspective for Diagnosis and Management Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:06:57 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/824514/ The search for biomarkers to detect the earliest glimpse of cancer has been one of the primary objectives of cancer research initiatives. These endeavours, in spite of constant clinical challenges, are now more focused as early cancer detection provides increased opportunities for different interventions and therapies, with higher potential for improving patient survival and quality of life. With the progress of the omics technologies, proteomics and metabolomics are currently being used for identification of biomarkers. In this line, cytoglobin (Cygb), a ubiquitously found protein, has been actively reviewed for its functional role. Cytoglobin is dynamically responsive to a number of insults, namely, fibrosis, oxidative stress, and hypoxia. Recently, it has been reported that Cygb is downregulated in a number of malignancies and that an induced overexpression reduces the proliferative characteristics of cancer cells. Thus, the upregulation of cytoglobin can be indicative of a tumour suppressor ability. Nevertheless, without a comprehensive outlook of the molecular and functional role of the globin, it will be most unlikely to consider cytoglobin as a biomarker for early detection of cancer or as a therapeutic option. This review provides an overview of the proposed role of cytoglobin and explores its potential functional role as a biomarker for cancer and other diseases. Tatsha C. Bholah, Vidushi S. Neergheen-Bhujun, Nikolas J. Hodges, Sabrina D. Dyall, and Theeshan Bahorun Copyright © 2015 Tatsha C. Bholah et al. All rights reserved. Biological Roles of Resolvins and Related Substances in the Resolution of Pain Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:04:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/830930/ Endogenous pain-inhibitory substances have rarely been found. A group of powerful pain suppressor molecules that are endogenously generated are now emerging: resolvins and related compounds including neuroprotectins and maresins. These molecules began to be unveiled in a series of inflammation studies more than a decade ago, rapidly shifting the paradigm that explains the mechanism for the inflammatory phase switch. The resolution phase was considered a passive process as proinflammatory mediators disappeared; it is now understood to be actively drawn by the actions of resolvins. Surprisingly, these substances potently affect the pain state. Although this research area is not fully matured, consistently beneficial outcomes have been observed in a various in vivo and in vitro pain models. Furthermore, multiple hypotheses on the neuronal and molecular mechanisms for alleviating pain are being tested, deriving inspiration from existing inflammation and pain studies. This paper serves as a brief summary of the proresolving roles of resolvins and related lipid mediators in inflammation and also as a review for accumulated information of their painkilling actions. This also includes potential receptor-mediated mechanisms and discusses future scientific perspectives. Further diverse approaches will help to construct a hidden axis of natural protection principles and establish proofs of concept for pain relief. Ji Yeon Lim, Chul-Kyu Park, and Sun Wook Hwang Copyright © 2015 Ji Yeon Lim et al. All rights reserved. The Role of Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in the Treatment of Patients with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome: A Clinical Review Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:03:38 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/653750/ Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is defined as the acute onset of noncardiogenic edema and subsequent gas-exchange impairment due to a severe inflammatory process. Recent report on the prognostic value of eicosanoids in patients with ARDS suggests that modulating the inflammatory response through the use of polyunsaturated fatty acids may be a useful strategy for ARDS treatment. The use of enteral diets enriched with eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) has reported promising results, showing an improvement in respiratory variables and haemodynamics. However, the interpretation of the studies is limited by their heterogeneity and methodology and the effect of ω-3 fatty acid-enriched lipid emulsion or enteral diets on patients with ARDS remains unclear. Therefore, the routine use of ω-3 fatty acid-enriched nutrition cannot be recommended and further large, homogeneous, and high-quality clinical trials need to be conducted to clarify the effectiveness of ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. M. García de Acilu, S. Leal, B. Caralt, O. Roca, J. Sabater, and J. R. Masclans Copyright © 2015 M. García de Acilu et al. All rights reserved. Surgical Treatment of Cystic Adventitial Disease of the Popliteal Artery: Five Case Reports Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:02:31 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crivam/2015/984681/ Cystic adventitial disease (CAD) is a rare cause of intermittent claudication and nonatherosclerotic conditions in middle-aged men without cardiovascular risk factors. The etiology of CAD is unclear; however, the direct communication between a cyst and a joint is presumed to be a cause. We herein report a case series of CAD of the popliteal artery (CADPA), in which patients were treated with surgical resection and vascular reconstruction. Although less invasive treatment modalities, including percutaneous cyst aspiration and percutaneous transluminal angioplasty, have been the subject of recent reports, these treatments have had a higher recurrence rate. Therefore, all of the CAPDA cases in the present series were treated surgically, which lead to good outcomes. Kimihiro Igari, Toshifumi Kudo, Takahiro Toyofuku, and Yoshinori Inoue Copyright © 2015 Kimihiro Igari et al. All rights reserved. AcconPred: Predicting Solvent Accessibility and Contact Number Simultaneously by a Multitask Learning Framework under the Conditional Neural Fields Model Mon, 03 Aug 2015 07:44:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/678764/ Motivation. The solvent accessibility of protein residues is one of the driving forces of protein folding, while the contact number of protein residues limits the possibilities of protein conformations. The de novo prediction of these properties from protein sequence is important for the study of protein structure and function. Although these two properties are certainly related with each other, it is challenging to exploit this dependency for the prediction. Method. We present a method AcconPred for predicting solvent accessibility and contact number simultaneously, which is based on a shared weight multitask learning framework under the CNF (conditional neural fields) model. The multitask learning framework on a collection of related tasks provides more accurate prediction than the framework trained only on a single task. The CNF method not only models the complex relationship between the input features and the predicted labels, but also exploits the interdependency among adjacent labels. Results. Trained on 5729 monomeric soluble globular protein datasets, AcconPred could reach 0.68 three-state accuracy for solvent accessibility and 0.75 correlation for contact number. Tested on the 105 CASP11 domain datasets for solvent accessibility, AcconPred could reach 0.64 accuracy, which outperforms existing methods. Jianzhu Ma and Sheng Wang Copyright © 2015 Jianzhu Ma and Sheng Wang. All rights reserved.