Hindawi Publishing Corporation http://www.hindawi.com The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2014 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Nanostructured Materials: Formation, Characterization, and Properties—Latest Advances in 1D, 2D, and 3D Nanostructures Thu, 17 Apr 2014 06:51:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/amse/2014/164174/ Luís Cunha, Denis Chaumont, and Aldo Craievich Copyright © 2014 Luís Cunha et al. All rights reserved. The Therapeutic Potential of Medicinal Foods Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aps/2014/354264/ Pharmaceutical and nutritional sciences have recently witnessed a bloom in the scientific literature geared towards the use of food plants for their diversified health benefits and potential clinical applications. Health professionals now recognize that a synergism of drug therapy and nutrition might confer optimum outcomes in the fight against diseases. The prophylactic benefits of food plants are being investigated for potential use as novel medicinal remedies due to the presence of pharmacologically active compounds. Although the availability of scientific data is rapidly growing, there is still a paucity of updated compilation of data and concerns about the rationale of these health-foods still persist in the literature. This paper attempts to congregate the nutritional value, phytochemical composition, traditional uses, in vitro and in vivo studies of 10 common medicinal food plants used against chronic noncommunicable and infectious diseases. Food plants included were based on the criteria that they are consumed as a common food in a typical diet as either fruit or vegetable for their nutritive value but have also other parts which are in common use in folk medicine. The potential challenges of incorporating these medicinal foods in the diet which offers prospective opportunities for future drug development are also discussed. Nelvana Ramalingum and M. Fawzi Mahomoodally Copyright © 2014 Nelvana Ramalingum and M. Fawzi Mahomoodally. All rights reserved. Mixed Convection Unsteady Stagnation-Point Flow towards a Stretching Sheet with Slip Effects Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/435697/ The paper studies the unsteady mixed convection flow of an incompressible viscous fluid about a stagnation point on a stretching sheet in presence of velocity and thermal slips. The governing equations are transformed into the ordinary differential equations by using similarity transformations. The transformed equations are solved numerically by an efficient shooting method. The characteristics of the flow and heat transfer features for governing parameters are analyzed and discussed for both the assisting and opposing flows. It is found that dual solutions exist for certain range of buoyancy parameter which again depend on the unsteadiness parameter and the slip parameters (i.e., and ). The numerical results show that the increase of unsteadiness parameter and the slip effects cause increment in the existence range of similarity solution. The effects of unsteadiness parameter, the velocity ratio parameter, and the velocity and thermal slip parameters on the velocity and temperature distributions are analyzed and discussed. Hui Chen Copyright © 2014 Hui Chen. All rights reserved. Update on Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Research: From Clinical to Genetic Studies Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/scientifica/2014/564734/ An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a dilatation of the abdominal aorta with a diameter of at least 3.0 cm. AAAs are often asymptomatic and are discovered as incidental findings in imaging studies or when the AAA ruptures leading to a medical emergency. AAAs are more common in males than females, in individuals of European ancestry, and in those over 65 years of age. Smoking is the most important environmental risk factor. In addition, a positive family history of AAA increases the person’s risk for AAA. Interestingly, diabetes has been shown to be a protective factor for AAA in many large studies. Hallmarks of AAA pathogenesis include inflammation, vascular smooth muscle cell apoptosis, extracellular matrix degradation, and oxidative stress. Autoimmunity may also play a role in AAA development and progression. In this Outlook paper, we summarize our recent studies on AAA including clinical studies related to surgical repair of AAA and genetic risk factor and large-scale gene expression studies. We conclude with a discussion on our research projects using large data sets available through electronic medical records and biobanks. Helena Kuivaniemi, Evan J. Ryer, James R. Elmore, Irene Hinterseher, Diane T. Smelser, and Gerard Tromp Copyright © 2014 Helena Kuivaniemi et al. All rights reserved. Metaheuristic Algorithm for Solving Biobjective Possibility Planning Model of Location-Allocation in Disaster Relief Logistics Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jam/2014/239868/ Thousands of victims and millions of affected people are hurt by natural disasters every year. Therefore, it is essential to prepare proper response programs that consider early activities of disaster management. In this paper, a multiobjective model for distribution centers which are located and allocated periodically to the damaged areas in order to distribute relief commodities is offered. The main objectives of this model are minimizing the total costs and maximizing the least rate of the satisfaction in the sense of being fair while distributing the items. The model simultaneously determines the location of relief distribution centers and the allocation of affected areas to relief distribution centers. Furthermore, an efficient solution approach based on genetic algorithm has been developed in order to solve the proposed mathematical model. The results of genetic algorithm are compared with the results provided by simulated annealing algorithm and LINGO software. The computational results show that the proposed genetic algorithm provides relatively good solutions in a reasonable time. Farnaz Barzinpour, Mohsen Saffarian, Ahmad Makoui, and Ebrahim Teimoury Copyright © 2014 Farnaz Barzinpour et al. All rights reserved. The Local Stability of Solutions for a Nonlinear Equation Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/781813/ The approach of Kruzkov’s device of doubling the variables is applied to establish the local stability of strong solutions for a nonlinear partial differential equation in the space by assuming that the initial value only lies in the space . Haibo Yan and Ls Yong Copyright © 2014 Haibo Yan and Ls Yong. All rights reserved. Preserving Global Exponential Stability of Hybrid BAM Neural Networks with Reaction Diffusion Terms in the Presence of Stochastic Noise and Connection Weight Matrices Uncertainty Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/486052/ We study the impact of stochastic noise and connection weight matrices uncertainty on global exponential stability of hybrid BAM neural networks with reaction diffusion terms. Given globally exponentially stable hybrid BAM neural networks with reaction diffusion terms, the question to be addressed here is how much stochastic noise and connection weights matrices uncertainty the neural networks can tolerate while maintaining global exponential stability. The upper threshold of stochastic noise and connection weights matrices uncertainty is defined by using the transcendental equations. We find that the perturbed hybrid BAM neural networks with reaction diffusion terms preserve global exponential stability if the intensity of both stochastic noise and connection weights matrices uncertainty is smaller than the defined upper threshold. A numerical example is also provided to illustrate the theoretical conclusion. Yan Li and Yi Shen Copyright © 2014 Yan Li and Yi Shen. All rights reserved. Mantle Cell Lymphoma Mimicking Rectal Carcinoma Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crihem/2014/621017/ Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) is a mature B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. After the (11;14) translocation was identified as its constant finding in 1992, MCL was recognized as a separate subgroup of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). In MCL, extranodal involvement may be observed in the bone marrow, the spleen, the liver, and the gastrointestinal system (GIS). Cases of MCL that present with a massive and solitary rectal mass are rare in the literature. In this case report, our aim was to present an MCL patient with a rarely observed solitary rectal involvement mimicking rectal carcinoma and to discuss treatment options for this patient. Engin Kelkitli, Hilmi Atay, Levent Yıldız, Ahmet Bektaş, and Mehmet Turgut Copyright © 2014 Engin Kelkitli et al. All rights reserved. Genome-Wide and Gene-Specific Epigenomic Platforms for Hepatocellular Carcinoma Biomarker Development Trials Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/grp/2014/597164/ The majority of the epigenomic reports in hepatocellular carcinoma have focused on identifying novel differentially methylated drivers or passengers of the oncogenic process. Few reports have considered the technologies in place for clinical translation of newly identified biomarkers. The aim of this study was to identify epigenomic technologies that need only a small number of samples to discriminate HCC from non-HCC tissue, a basic requirement for biomarker development trials. To assess that potential, we used quantitative Methylation Specific PCR, oligonucleotide tiling arrays, and Methylation BeadChip assays. Concurrent global DNA hypomethylation, gene-specific hypermethylation, and chromatin alterations were observed as a hallmark of HCC. A global loss of promoter methylation was observed in HCC with the Illumina BeadChip assays and the Nimblegen oligonucleotide arrays. HCC samples had lower median methylation peak scores and a reduced number of significant promoter-wide methylated probes. Promoter hypermethylation of RASSF1A, SSBP2, and B4GALT1 quantified by qMSP had a sensitivity ranging from 38% to 52%, a specificity of 100%, and an AUC from 0.58 to 0.75. A panel combining these genes with HCC risk factors had a sensitivity of 87%, a specificity of 100%, and an AUC of 0.91. Christina Michailidi, Ethan Soudry, Mariana Brait, Leonel Maldonado, Andrew Jaffe, Carmen Ili-Gangas, Priscilla Brebi-Mieville, Jimena Perez, Myoung Sook Kim, Xiaoli Zhong, Quiang Yang, Blanca Valle, Stephen J. Meltzer, Michael Torbenson, Manel Esteller, David Sidransky, and Rafael Guerrero-Preston Copyright © 2014 Christina Michailidi et al. All rights reserved. Stability to a Kind of Functional Differential Equations of Second Order with Multiple Delays by Fixed Points Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/413037/ We discuss the stability of solutions to a kind of scalar Liénard type equations with multiple variable delays by means of the fixed point technique under an exponentially weighted metric. By this work, we improve some related results from one delay to multiple variable delays. Cemil Tunç and Emel Biçer Copyright © 2014 Cemil Tunç and Emel Biçer. All rights reserved. Grey Target Decision Method for a Variable Target Centre Based on the Decision Maker’s Preferences Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jam/2014/572529/ In multiattribute grey target decision making, the decision maker (DM) may have certain preferences for some attributes. The impacts of two types of DM’s preferences for some attribute values on alternatives were studied. To deal with the attribute preferences of a DM, a generalised grey target decision method was presented. The proposed method required that the index values of all alternatives were not normalised. The target centre index values can be obtained by substituting DM’s preference values for some of the original target centre index values as determined by the alternatives themselves. Following this, the proposed generalised method was used to calculate the target centre distances. A case study showed that this method of handling DM’s preferences for some attributes was effective. Jinshan Ma Copyright © 2014 Jinshan Ma. All rights reserved. A Novel Method of Mechanical Oxidation of CNT for Polymer Nanocomposite Application: Evaluation of Mechanical, Dynamic Mechanical, and Rheological Properties Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijce/2014/623109/ A new approach of oxidation of carbon nanotubes has been used to oxidize the CNTs. A comparative aspect of the mechanical oxidation and acid oxidation process has been established. FTIR analysis and titration method have shown the higher feasibility of the mechanical oxidation method to oxidize the CNTs. Comparatively less damage to the CNTs has been observed in case of mechanically oxidized as compared to acid oxidized CNTs. The mechanical properties of the nanocomposites reinforced with the acid oxidized CNT (ACNT) and mechanically oxidized CNTs (McCNT) were analyzed and relatively higher properties in the nanocomposites reinforced with McCNT were noticed. The less degree of entanglement in the McCNTs was noticed as compared to ACNTs. The dynamic mechanical analysis of the nanocomposites revealed much improved load transfer capability in the McCNT reinforced composites. Further, the rheological properties of the nanocomposites revealed the higher performance of McCNT reinforced composites. Priyanka Pandey, Smita Mohanty, and Sanjay Kumar Nayak Copyright © 2014 Priyanka Pandey et al. All rights reserved. Enhanced Multistage Homotopy Perturbation Method: Approximate Solutions of Nonlinear Dynamic Systems Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/486509/ We introduce a new approach called the enhanced multistage homotopy perturbation method (EMHPM) that is based on the homotopy perturbation method (HPM) and the usage of time subintervals to find the approximate solution of differential equations with strong nonlinearities. We also study the convergence of our proposed EMHPM approach based on the value of the control parameter h by following the homotopy analysis method (HAM). At the end of the paper, we compare the derived EMHPM approximate solutions of some nonlinear physical systems with their corresponding numerical integration solutions obtained by using the classical fourth order Runge-Kutta method via the amplitude-time response curves. Daniel Olvera and Alex Elías-Zúñiga Copyright © 2014 Daniel Olvera and Alex Elías-Zúñiga. All rights reserved. LP Well-Posedness for Bilevel Vector Equilibrium and Optimization Problems with Equilibrium Constraints Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/792984/ The purpose of this paper is introduce several types of Levitin-Polyak well-posedness for bilevel vector equilibrium and optimization problems with equilibrium constraints. Base on criterion and characterizations for these types of Levitin-Polyak well-posedness we argue on diameters and Kuratowski’s, Hausdorff’s, or Istrǎtescus measures of noncompactness of approximate solution sets under suitable conditions, and we prove the Levitin-Polyak well-posedness for bilevel vector equilibrium and optimization problems with equilibrium constraints. Obtain a gap function for bilevel vector equilibrium problems with equilibrium constraints using the nonlinear scalarization function and consider relations between these types of LP well-posedness for bilevel vector optimization problems with equilibrium constraints and these types of Levitin-Polyak well-posedness for bilevel vector equilibrium problems with equilibrium constraints under suitable conditions; we prove the Levitin-Polyak well-posedness for bilevel equilibrium and optimization problems with equilibrium constraints. Phan Quoc Khanh, Somyot Plubtieng, and Kamonrat Sombut Copyright © 2014 Phan Quoc Khanh et al. All rights reserved. Prolonged Toxic Encephalopathy following Accidental 4-Aminopyridine Overdose Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crinm/2014/237064/ Background. 4-Aminopyridine (4-AP) is a drug that is used to improve motor fatigue in patients suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS). Medication error can occur, as commercial preparation may not be available in some countries. Case Presentation. A 58-year-old woman with progressive MS presented with status epilepticus. She was receiving 4-AP for more than 3 years. The symptoms started soon after the ingestion of a single pill that was supposed to contain 10 mg 4-AP, but further investigations revealed that each pill had been inadvertently prepared with an 100 mg 4-AP concentration. The patient was admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) for appropriate management (orotracheal intubation, sedation, and antiepileptic drugs). The first electroencephalogram (EEG) showed abundant irregular spike-waves on the left central regions. Neurological condition gradually improved from day 7, while the EEG did not reveal any more electrical seizures but was still consistent with toxic encephalopathy. The patient stayed in the ICU until day 13. At discharge from the rehabilitation ward (2.5 months later), the patient had not yet recovered her previous cognitive and functional condition. Conclusion. A single 100 mg 4-AP accidental overdose may cause serious immediate complications, with a slow and incomplete neurological recovery. Maria Ballesta Méndez, Vincent van Pesch, Arnaud Capron, and Philippe Hantson Copyright © 2014 Maria Ballesta Méndez et al. All rights reserved. Bifurcations of Tumor-Immune Competition Systems with Delay Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:26:31 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/723159/ A tumor-immune competition model with delay is considered, which consists of two-dimensional nonlinear differential equation. The conditions for the linear stability of the equilibria are obtained by analyzing the distribution of eigenvalues. General formulas for the direction, period, and stability of the bifurcated periodic solutions are given for codimension one and codimension two bifurcations, including Hopf bifurcation, steady-state bifurcation, and B-T bifurcation. Numerical examples and simulations are given to illustrate the bifurcations analysis and obtained results. Ping Bi and Heying Xiao Copyright © 2014 Ping Bi and Heying Xiao. All rights reserved. PSFCS: Robust Emergency Communications Supporting High Mobility Based on WiMAX MMR Networks Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:25:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2014/254753/ Nowadays public safety networks are widely deployed to support highly reliable wireless communications in case of emergency. The adoption of standardized systems such as WiMAX for emergency communications represents a significant advance in the off-the-shelf technologies for error detection and error correction. Since it is difficult to fully eliminate the Doppler effect under high speed moving environment, we propose an enhanced CRC-based error correction scheme that carries as much extra segmented frame Check Sequence (FCS) information as subblocks of emergency multicast/broadcast service (MBS) frame, called progressive and selective frame check sequence (PSFCS). In a mobile multihop relay (MMR) environment, a high-mobility mobile station might receive an emergency MBS frame more than once, so the PSFCS could be cross-referenced by duplicated frames received. Therefore the PSFCS achieves a significant performance improvement over the legacy FCS scheme in terms of error detection and correction of emergency MBS frames in a WiMAX MMR network operating in transparent mode. The experimental results show that the goodput and utilization of high-mobility mobile stations can be improved remarkably. Wen-Kang Jia, Chia-Yao Chen, and Yaw-Chung Chen Copyright © 2014 Wen-Kang Jia et al. All rights reserved. A Multifrequency Radar System for Detecting Humans and Characterizing Human Activities for Short-Range Through-Wall and Long-Range Foliage Penetration Applications Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:25:41 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijmst/2014/958905/ A multifrequency radar system for detecting humans and classifying their activities at short and long ranges is described. The short-range radar system operates within the S-Band frequency range for through-wall applications at distances of up to 3 m. It utilizes two separate waveforms which are selected via switching: a wide-band noise waveform or a continuous single tone. The long-range radar system operating in the W-Band millimeter-wave frequency range performs at distances of up to about 100 m in free space and up to about 30 m through light foliage. It employs a composite multimodal signal consisting of two waveforms, a wide-band noise waveform and an embedded single tone, which are summed and transmitted simultaneously. Matched filtering of the received and transmitted noise signals is performed to detect targets with high-range resolution, whereas the received single tone signal is used for the Doppler analysis. Doppler measurements are used to distinguish between different human movements and gestures using the characteristic micro-Doppler signals. Our measurements establish the ability of this system to detect and range humans and distinguish between different human movements at different ranges. Ram M. Narayanan, Sonny Smith, and Kyle A. Gallagher Copyright © 2014 Ram M. Narayanan et al. All rights reserved. Determination of Phenol and Chlorophenols at Single-Wall Carbon Nanotubes/Poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) Modified Glassy Carbon Electrode Using Flow Injection Amperometry Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:24:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/isrn.analytical.chemistry/2014/926213/ Phenol and chlorophenols were investigated using single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNT) and poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) (PEDOT) composite modified glassy carbon electrode (SWCNT/PEDOT/GCE) as a detector in flow injection system. Optimization of experimental variables such as the detection potential, flow rate, and pH of the carrier solution (0.1 M sodium acetate) for the determination of phenol (P), 4-chlorophenol (CP), 2,4-dichlorophenol (DCP), 2,4,6-trichlorophenol (TCP), and pentachlorophenol (PCP) were performed. Under these conditions, analytical parameters were calculated from the calibration curve of measured amperometric responses as a function of concentrations of phenol and chlorophenols. The designed electrode exhibited very good analytical performance. The designed electrode was tested with 20 repetitive injections of each analyte and showed good operational stability. The analytical performance of the SWCNT/PEDOT/GCE electrode under flow through conditions was tested and was found to be impressive. The electrode showed a wider dynamic range for the detection of phenol and chlorophenols with low limits of detection compared with other enzymatic and nonenzymatic sensors. These results suggest that the method is quite useful for the analysis and monitoring of phenols and chlorophenols. Negussie Negash, Hailemichael Alemu, and Merid Tessema Copyright © 2014 Negussie Negash et al. All rights reserved. A Joint Optimization of Momentum Item and Levenberg-Marquardt Algorithm to Level Up the BPNN’s Generalization Ability Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:24:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/653072/ Back propagation neural network (BPNN) as a kind of artificial neural network is widely used in pattern recognition and trend prediction. For standard BPNN, it has many drawbacks such as trapping into local optima, oscillation, and long training time. Because training the standard BPNN is based on gradient descent method, and the learning rate is fixed. Momentum item and Levenberg-Marquardt (LM) algorithm are two ways to adjust the weights among the neurons and improve the BPNN’s performance. However, there is still much space to improve the two algorithms. The hybrid optimization of damping factor of LM and the dynamic momentum item is proposed in this paper. The improved BPNN is validated by Fisher Iris data and wine data. Then, it is used to predict the visit_spend. The database is provided by Dunnhumby's Shopper Challenge. Compared with the other two improved BPNNs, the proposed method gets a better performance. Therefore, the proposed method can be used to do the pattern recognition and time series prediction more effectively. Lei Xiao, Xiaohui Chen, and Xinghui Zhang Copyright © 2014 Lei Xiao et al. All rights reserved. Wind Turbine Gearbox Fault Diagnosis Method Based on Riemannian Manifold Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:19:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/153656/ As multivariate time series problems widely exist in social production and life, fault diagnosis method has provided people with a lot of valuable information in the finance, hydrology, meteorology, earthquake, video surveillance, medical science, and other fields. In order to find faults in time sequence quickly and efficiently, this paper presents a multivariate time series processing method based on Riemannian manifold. This method is based on the sliding window and uses the covariance matrix as a descriptor of the time sequence. Riemannian distance is used as the similarity measure and the statistical process control diagram is applied to detect the abnormity of multivariate time series. And the visualization of the covariance matrix distribution is used to detect the abnormity of mechanical equipment, leading to realize the fault diagnosis. With wind turbine gearbox faults as the experiment object, the fault diagnosis method is verified and the results show that the method is reasonable and effective. Shoubin Wang, Xiaogang Sun, and Chengwei Li Copyright © 2014 Shoubin Wang et al. All rights reserved. The Impact of Hyperglycemia on Risk of Severe Infections during Early Period of Induction Therapy in Patients with Newly Diagnosed Multiple Myeloma Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:46:34 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/413149/ The association between hyperglycemia and infections during induction chemotherapy has been reported in a number of hematologic disorders. This retrospective study evaluated the incidence of hyperglycemia during induction therapy in 155 patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) and its effect on serious infections during the first 60 days of induction. A total of 20 (12.9%) patients developed overt hyperglycemia (≥200 mg/dL) during induction therapy. Serious infections occurred in 28 (18.1%) of 155 patients and infection-related mortality within 2 months after treatment was 0.6% (1 patient). In a univariate analysis, overt hyperglycemia, poor performance status (≥2), International Staging System III, lymphopenia (<500/μL), and elevated serum creatinine (≥2 mg/dL) were found to be associated with serious infections. In multivariate analysis, only overt hyperglycemia (HR 7.846, 95% CI 2.512–24.503, ) and poor performance status (HR 5.801, 95% CI 1.974–17.050, ) remained significant. In conclusion, this study demonstrated an association between hyperglycemia and serious infections during induction therapy in patients with MM. Sung-Hoon Jung, Hee-Chang Jang, Seung-Shin Lee, Jae-Sook Ahn, Deok-Hwan Yang, Yeo-Kyeoung Kim, Hyeoung-Joon Kim, and Je-Jung Lee Copyright © 2014 Sung-Hoon Jung et al. All rights reserved. Role of 99mTc-ECD SPECT in the Management of Children with Craniosynostosis Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:45:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/172646/ Purpose of the Report. There is a paucity of data on correlation of various imaging modalities with clinical findings in craniosynostosis. Moreover, no study has specifically reported the role of -ECD SPECT in a large number of subjects with craniosynostosis. Materials and Methods. We prospectively analyzed a cohort of 85 patients with craniosynostosis from year 2007 to 2012. All patients underwent evaluation with -ECD SPECT and the results were correlated with radiological and surgical findings. Results. -ECD SPECT revealed regional perfusion abnormalities in the cerebral hemisphere corresponding to the fused sutures preoperatively that disappeared postoperatively in all the cases. Corresponding to this, the mean mental performance quotient (MPQ) increased significantly postoperatively only in those children with absent perfusion defect postoperatively. Conclusions. Our study suggests that early surgery and release of craniosynostosis in patients with preoperative perfusion defects (absent on -ECD SPECT study) are beneficial, as theylead to improved MPQ after surgery. Mayadhar Barik, Minu Bajpai, Rashmi Ranajn Das, Arun Malhotra, Shasanka Shekhar Panda, Manas Kumar Sahoo, and Sadanand Dwivedi Copyright © 2014 Mayadhar Barik et al. All rights reserved. Surface Characteristics and Bioactivity of a Novel Natural HA/Zircon Nanocomposite Coated on Dental Implants Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:45:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/410627/ The surface characteristics of implant which influence the speed and strength of osseointegration include surface chemistry, crystal structure and crystallinity, roughness, strain hardening, and presence of impurities. The aim of this study was to evaluate the bioactivity and roughness of a novel natural hydroxyapatite/zircon (NHA/zircon) nanobiocomposite, coated on 316L stainless steel (SS) soaked in simulated body fluid (SBF). NHA/zircon nanobiocomposite was fabricated with 0 wt.%, 5 wt.%, 10 wt.%, and 15 wt.% of zircon in NHA using ball mill for 20 minutes. The composite mixture was coated on 316L SS using plasma spray method. The results are estimated using the scanning electron microscopy (SEM) observation to evaluate surface morphology, X-ray diffraction (XRD) to analyze phase composition, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) technique to evaluate the shape and size of prepared NHA. Surfaces roughness tester was performed to characterize the coated nanocomposite samples. The maximum average (14.54 μm) was found in the NHA 10 wt.% of zircon coating. In addition, crystallinity () was measured by XRD data, which indicated the minimum value ( = 41.1%) for the sample containing 10 wt.% of zircon. Maximum bioactivity occurred in the sample containing 10 wt.% of zircon, which was due to two reasons: first, the maximum roughness and, second, the minimum crystallinity of nanobiocomposite coating. Ebrahim Karamian, Amirsalar Khandan, Mahmood Reza Kalantar Motamedi, and Hesam Mirmohammadi Copyright © 2014 Ebrahim Karamian et al. All rights reserved. Numerical Simulation of 3D Solid-Liquid Turbulent Flow in a Low Specific Speed Centrifugal Pump: Performance Comparison of Four Geometric Models Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:28:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/678271/ For numerically simulating 3D solid-liquid turbulent flow in low specific speed centrifugal pumps, there exist several problems including how to design geometrical shape of the calculation model to represent the real pump and how to predict pump performance accurately to guide the design of pump. To solve these problems, four kinds of geometric models were designed. The performance of a low specific speed solid-liquid centrifugal pump was predicted, and the results showed that the improved prediction methods are more accurate than the traditional method. Moreover, the simulation results of the entire flow field of the geometric model including balance holes and the lateral clearances of impeller in which liquid rotates with half speed of impeller are closer to the real situation. Baocheng Shi and Jinjia Wei Copyright © 2014 Baocheng Shi and Jinjia Wei. All rights reserved. Primary Nephrotic Syndrome in Adults as a Risk Factor for Pulmonary Embolism: An Up-to-Date Review of the Literature Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:23:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijn/2014/916760/ Patients with nephrotic syndrome are at an increased risk for thrombotic events; deep venous thrombosis, renal vein thrombosis, and pulmonary embolism are quite common in patients with nephrotic syndrome. It is important to note that nephrotic syndrome secondary to membranous nephropathy may impose a greater thrombotic risk for unclear reasons. Increased platelet activation, enhanced red blood cell aggregation, and an imbalance between procoagulant and anticoagulant factors are thought to underlie the excessive thrombotic risk in patients with nephrotic syndrome. The current scientific literature suggests that patients with low serum albumin levels and membranous nephropathy may benefit from primary prophylactic anticoagulation. A thorough approach which includes accounting for all additional thrombotic risk factors is, therefore, essential. Patient counseling regarding the pros and cons of anticoagulation is of paramount importance. Future prospective randomized studies should address the question regarding the utility of primary thromboprophylaxis in patients with nephrotic syndrome. Aibek E. Mirrakhimov, Alaa M. Ali, Aram Barbaryan, Suartcha Prueksaritanond, and Nasir Hussain Copyright © 2014 Aibek E. Mirrakhimov et al. All rights reserved. Combustion and Emission Characteristics of Variable Compression Ignition Engine Fueled with Jatropha curcas Ethyl Ester Blends at Different Compression Ratio Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:20:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jre/2014/872923/ Engine performance and emission characteristics of unmodified biodiesel fueled diesel engines are highly influenced by their ignition and combustion behavior. In this study, emission and combustion characteristics were studied when the engine operated using the different blends (B10, B20, B30, and B40) and normal diesel fuel (B0) as well as when varying the compression ratio from 16.5 : 1 to 17.5 : 1 to 18.5 : 1. The change of compression ratio from 16.5 : 1 to 18.5 : 1 resulted in 27.1%, 27.29%, 26.38%, 28.48%, and 34.68% increase in cylinder pressure for the blends B0, B10, B20, B30, and B40, respectively, at 75% of rated load conditions. Higher peak heat release rate increased by 23.19%, 14.03%, 26.32%, 21.87%, and 25.53% for the blends B0, B10, B20, B30, and B40, respectively, at 75% of rated load conditions, when compression ratio was increased from16.5 : 1 to 18.5 : 1. The delay period decreased by 21.26%, CO emission reduced by 14.28%, and emission increased by 22.84% for B40 blends at 75% of rated load conditions, when compression ratio was increased from 16.5 : 1 to 18.5 : 1. It is concluded that Jatropha oil ester can be used as fuel in diesel engine by blending it with diesel fuel. Rajneesh Kumar and Anoop Kumar Dixit Copyright © 2014 Rajneesh Kumar and Anoop Kumar Dixit. All rights reserved. The Asymptotic Solutions for a Class of Nonlinear Singular Perturbed Differential Systems with Time delays Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:12:57 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/965376/ We study a kind of vector singular perturbed delay-differential equations. By using the methods of boundary function and fractional steps, we construct the formula of asymptotic expansion and confirm the interior layer at . Meanwhile, on the basis of functional analysis skill, the existence of the smooth solution and the uniform validity of the asymptotic expansion are proved. Han Xu and Yinlai Jin Copyright © 2014 Han Xu and Yinlai Jin. All rights reserved. A Novel Improved ELM Algorithm for a RealIndustrial Application Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:10:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/824765/ It is well known that the feedforward neural networks meet numbers of difficulties in the applications because of its slow learning speed. The extreme learning machine (ELM) is a new single hidden layer feedforward neural network method aiming at improving the training speed. Nowadays ELM algorithm has received wide application with its good generalization performance under fast learning speed. However, there are still several problems needed to be solved in ELM. In this paper, a new improved ELM algorithm named R-ELM is proposed to handle the multicollinear problem appearing in calculation of the ELM algorithm. The proposed algorithm is employed in bearing fault detection using stator current monitoring. Simulative results show that R-ELM algorithm has better stability and generalization performance compared with the original ELM and the other neural network methods. Hai-Gang Zhang, Sen Zhang, and Yi-Xin Yin Copyright © 2014 Hai-Gang Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Two-Dimensional PCA Highlights the Differentiated Antitumor and Antimicrobial Activity of Methanolic and Aqueous Extracts of Laurus nobilis L. from Different Origins Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:06:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/520464/ Natural matrices are important sources of new antitumor and antimicrobial compounds. Species such as Laurus nobilis L. (laurel) might be used for this purpose, considering its medicinal properties. Herein, in vitro activity against human tumor cell lines, bacteria, and fungi was evaluated in enriched phenolic extracts. Specifically, methanol and aqueous extracts of wild and cultivated samples of L. nobilis were compared considering different phenolic groups. Principal component analysis (PCA) was applied to understand how each extract acts differentially against specific bacteria, fungi, and selected human tumor cell lines. In general, the extract type induced the highest differences in bioactivity of laurel samples. However, from the PCA biplot, it became clear that wild laurel samples were higher inhibitors of tumor cell lines (HeLa, MCF7, NCI-H460, and HCT15). HepG2 had the same response to laurel from wild and cultivated origin. It was also observed that methanolic extracts tended to have higher antimicrobial activity, except against A. niger, A. fumigatus, and P. verrucosum. The differences in bioactivity might be related to the higher phenolic contents in methanolic extracts. These results allow selecting the extract type and/or origin with highest antibacterial, antifungal, and antitumor activity. Maria Inês Dias, João C. M. Barreira, Ricardo C. Calhelha, Maria-João R. P. Queiroz, M. Beatriz P. P. Oliveira, Marina Soković, and Isabel C. F. R. Ferreira Copyright © 2014 Maria Inês Dias et al. All rights reserved. Influence of Processing Type in the Morphology of Membranes Obtained from PA6/MMT Nanocomposites Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:03:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/amse/2014/659148/ The nanocomposites have an extensive use in the current process of membrane preparation, taking into account their unique features as membranes. Thus, the study of nanocomposite processing to obtain membranes is highly important. In this work, Brazilian clay was used (Brasgel PA) for the preparation of polyamide/clay nanocomposite. The nanocomposites were produced in a high rotation homogenizer and in a twin screw extruder. From the nanocomposites and pure polymers processed in the two equipments, membranes were prepared by the immersion-precipitation method, using formic acid as solvent. By X-ray diffraction (XRD), the formation of exfoliated and/or partially exfoliated structures with changes in the crystalline phases of the polyamide was observed. From scanning electron microscopy images, it was observed that the processing clearly influenced the membrane morphology. Rodholfo da Silva Barbosa Ferreira, Caio Henrique do Ó Pereira, Rene Anisio da Paz, Amanda Melissa Damião Leite, Edcleide Maria Araújo, and Hélio de Lucena Lira Copyright © 2014 Rodholfo da Silva Barbosa Ferreira et al. All rights reserved. Hydrogen Gas Presents a Promising Therapeutic Strategy for Sepsis Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:58:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/807635/ Sepsis is characterized by a severe inflammatory response to infection. It remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality in critically ill patients despite developments in monitoring devices, diagnostic tools, and new therapeutic options. Recently, some studies have found that molecular hydrogen is a new therapeutic gas. Our studies have found that hydrogen gas can improve the survival and organ damage in mice and rats with cecal ligation and puncture, zymosan, and lipopolysaccharide-induced sepsis. The mechanisms are associated with the regulation of oxidative stress, inflammatory response, and apoptosis, which might be through NF-κB and Nrf2/HO-1 signaling pathway. In this paper, we summarized the progress of hydrogen treatment in sepsis. Keliang Xie, Lingling Liu, Yonghao Yu, and Guolin Wang Copyright © 2014 Keliang Xie et al. All rights reserved. Astrocyte Elevated Gene-1 Mediates Glycolysis and Tumorigenesis in Colorectal Carcinoma Cells via AMPK Signaling Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:57:29 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2014/287381/ To investigate the role of AEG-1 in glycolysis and tumorigenesis, we construct myc-AEG-1 expression vector and demonstrate a novel mechanism that AEG-1 may increase the activity of AMPK by Thr172 phosphorylation. The higher expression levels of AEG-1 in colorectal carcinoma cells were found but showed significant difference in different cell lines. To study the role of AEG-1 in colorectal cells, myc-AEG-1 vector was constructed and transfected into NCM460 colonic epithelial cells. We observed consistent increasing of glucose consumption and lactate production, typical features of anaerobic glycolysis, suggesting that AEG-1 may promote anaerobic glycolysis. Moreover, we noted that AMPK phosphorylation at Thr172 as well as pPFK2 (Ser466) was increased in NCM460 cells overexpressing AEG-1. Compound C may block AMPK and PFK2 phosphorylation in both control and AEG-1-overexpressed cells and decrease the glucose consumption and lactate production. The present findings indicated that reduced AEG-1 protein levels by RNAi may decrease the glucose consumption and lactate production in HCT116 colorectal carcinoma cells. The present identified AEG-1/AMPK/PFK2 glycolysis cascade may be essential to cell proliferation and tumor growth. The present results may provide us with a mechanistic insight into novel targets controlled by AEG-1, and the components in the AEG-1/AMPK/PFK2 glycolysis process may be targeted for the clinical treatment of cancer. Hong-tao Song, Yu Qin, Guo-dong Yao, Zhen-nan Tian, Song-bin Fu, and Jing-shu Geng Copyright © 2014 Hong-tao Song et al. All rights reserved. Korean Red Ginseng Saponin Fraction Rich in Ginsenoside-Rb1, Rc and Rb2 Attenuates the Severity of Mouse Collagen-Induced Arthritis Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:56:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2014/748964/ Despite a multitude of reports on anti-inflammatory properties of ginseng extracts or individual ginsenosides, data on antiarthritic effect of ginseng saponin preparation with mixed ginsenosides is limited. On the other hand, a combined therapy of safe and inexpensive plant-derived natural products such as ginsenosides can be considered as an alternative to treat arthritis. Our previous in vitro data displayed a strong anti-inflammatory action of red ginseng saponin fraction-A (RGSF-A). We, herein, report a marked antiarthritic property of RGSF-A rich in ginsenoside Rb1, Rc, and Rb2. Collagen-induced arthritic (CIA) mice were treated with RGSF-A or methotrexate (MTX) for 5 weeks. Joint pathology, serum antibody production and leukocye activation, cytokine production in the circulation, lymph nodes, and joints were examined. RGSF-A markedly reduced severity of arthritis, cellular infiltration, and cartilage damage. It suppressed CD3+/CD69+, CD4+/CD25+, CD8+ T-cell, CD19+, B220/CD23+ B-cell, MHCII+/CD11c+, and Gr-1+/CD11b+ cell activations. It further suppressed anti-CII- or anti-RF-IgG/IgM, TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-17, and IL-6 secretions but stimulated IL-10 levels in the serum, joint, or splenocyte. RGSF-A attenuated arthritis severity, modified leukocyte activations, and restored cytokine imbalances, suggesting that it can be considered as an antiarthritic agent with the capacity to ameliorate the immune and inflammatory responses in CIA mice. Mehari Endale, Eun Ju Im, Joo Young Lee, Sung Dae Kim, Taddesse Yayeh, Yong-Bum Song, Yi-Seong Kwak, Chaekyun Kim, Seung-Hyung Kim, Seong-Soo Roh, Jae Youl Cho, and Man Hee Rhee Copyright © 2014 Mehari Endale et al. All rights reserved. The Emerging Role of Biotechnological Drugs in the Treatment of Gout Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:55:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/264859/ One of the most important therapeutic advances obtained in the field of rheumatology is the availability of the so-called bio(techno)logical drugs, which have deeply changed treatment perspectives in diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis. According to the steadily increasing attention on gout, due to well-established prognostic and epidemiology implications, in the last 5 years, the same change of perspective has been observed also for this disease. In fact, several bio(techno)logical agents have been investigated both for the management of the articular gout symptoms, targeting mainly interleukin-1β, as well as urate-lowering therapies such as recombinant uricases. Among the IL-1β inhibitors, the majority of studies involve drugs such as anakinra, canakinumab, and rilonacept, but other compounds are under development. Moreover, other potential targets have been suggested, as, for example, the TNF alpha and IL-6, even if data obtained are less robust than those of IL-1β inhibitors. Regarding urate-lowering therapies, the recombinant uricases pegloticase and rasburicase clearly showed their effectiveness in gout patients. Also in this case, new compounds are under development. The aim of this review is to focus on the various aspects of different bio(techno)logical drugs in gouty patients. L. Cavagna and W. J. Taylor Copyright © 2014 L. Cavagna and W. J. Taylor. All rights reserved. Detection of Herpes Simplex and Varicella-Zoster Virus in Clinical Specimens by Multiplex Real-Time PCR and Melting Curve Analysis Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:54:38 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/261947/ Herpes simplex viruses types 1 and 2 (HSV-1 and HSV-2), and varicella-zoster virus (VZV) are common agents resulting in various forms of clinical manifestation from skin vesicle to disseminated viral infection. The aim of the present study was to develop a real-time PCR and melting curve analysis which detect and differentiate HSV-1, HSV-2, and VZV, to compare with PCR-RFLP using clinical specimens, and to introduce the 4-year experience in the clinical laboratory. Three pairs of primers for HSV-1, HSV-2, and VZV were designed. Primers for human endogenous retrovirus-3 (HERV-3), an internal control, were adopted. A hundred selected specimens and many clinical specimens were tested for methods comparison and assay validation. Increased sensitivity and specificity were obtained from real-time PCR. In review of results of clinical specimens submitted to clinical laboratory, a total of 46 of 3,513 specimens were positive in cerebrospinal fluids, blood, skin vesicles, genital swabs, aqueous humor, and ear discharge. Thus, this method could be a rapid and accurate alternative to virus culture and other molecular tests for detection and typing of HSV-1, HSV-2, and VZV. Yun Ji Hong, Mi Suk Lim, Sang Mee Hwang, Taek Soo Kim, Kyoung Un Park, Junghan Song, and Eui Chong Kim Copyright © 2014 Yun Ji Hong et al. All rights reserved. Using the Sadakane Compressed Suffix Tree to Solve the All-Pairs Suffix-Prefix Problem Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:52:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/745298/ The all-pairs suffix-prefix matching problem is a basic problem in string processing. It has an application in the de novo genome assembly task, which is one of the major bioinformatics problems. Due to the large size of the input data, it is crucial to use fast and space efficient solutions. In this paper, we present a space-economical solution to this problem using the generalized Sadakane compressed suffix tree. Furthermore, we present a parallel algorithm to provide more speed for shared memory computers. Our sequential and parallel algorithms are optimized by exploiting features of the Sadakane compressed index data structure. Experimental results show that our solution based on the Sadakane’s compressed index consumes significantly less space than the ones based on noncompressed data structures like the suffix tree and the enhanced suffix array. Our experimental results show that our parallel algorithm is efficient and scales well with increasing number of processors. Maan Haj Rachid, Qutaibah Malluhi, and Mohamed Abouelhoda Copyright © 2014 Maan Haj Rachid et al. All rights reserved. A Knowledge-Driven Approach to Extract Disease-Related Biomarkers from the Literature Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:51:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/253128/ The biomedical literature represents a rich source of biomarker information. However, both the size of literature databases and their lack of standardization hamper the automatic exploitation of the information contained in these resources. Text mining approaches have proven to be useful for the exploitation of information contained in the scientific publications. Here, we show that a knowledge-driven text mining approach can exploit a large literature database to extract a dataset of biomarkers related to diseases covering all therapeutic areas. Our methodology takes advantage of the annotation of MEDLINE publications pertaining to biomarkers with MeSH terms, narrowing the search to specific publications and, therefore, minimizing the false positive ratio. It is based on a dictionary-based named entity recognition system and a relation extraction module. The application of this methodology resulted in the identification of 131,012 disease-biomarker associations between 2,803 genes and 2,751 diseases, and represents a valuable knowledge base for those interested in disease-related biomarkers. Additionally, we present a bibliometric analysis of the journals reporting biomarker related information during the last 40 years. À. Bravo, M. Cases, N. Queralt-Rosinach, F. Sanz, and L. I. Furlong Copyright © 2014 À. Bravo et al. All rights reserved. Representation of the Solutions of Linear Discrete Systems with Constant Coefficients and Two Delays Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:28:41 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/320476/ The purpose of this paper is to develop a method for the construction of solutions to initial problems of linear discrete systems with constant coefficients and with two delays where , are fixed, , , are constant matrices, is a given vector, and is an unknown vector. Solutions are expressed with the aid of a special function called the discrete matrix delayed exponential for two delays. Such approach results in a possibility to express an initial Cauchy problem in a closed form. Examples are shown illustrating the results obtained. Josef Diblík and Blanka Morávková Copyright © 2014 Josef Diblík and Blanka Morávková. All rights reserved. On Hölder and Minkowski Type Inequalities Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:25:07 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/915635/ We obtain inequalities of Hölder and Minkowski type with weights generalizing both the case of weights with alternating signs and the classical case of nonnegative weights. Petr Chunaev, Ljiljanka Kvesić, and Josip Pečarić Copyright © 2014 Petr Chunaev et al. All rights reserved. Comparison of the Inhibitory Potential of Bavachalcone and Corylin against UDP-Glucuronosyltransferases Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:24:05 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/958937/ Bavachalcone and corylin are two major bioactive compounds isolated from Psoralea corylifolia L., which has been widely used as traditional Chinese medicine for many years. As two antibiotic or anticancer drugs, bavachalcone and corylin are used in combination with other drugs; thus it is necessary to evaluate potential pharmacokinetic herb-drug interactions (HDI) of the two bioactive compounds. The aim of the present study was to compare the effects of liver UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (UGT) 1A1, UGT1A3, UGT1A7, UGT1A8, UGT 1A10, and UGT2B4 inhibited by bavachalcone and corylin. 4-Methylumbelliferone (4-MU) was used as a nonspecific “probe” substrate. Bavachalcone had stronger inhibition on UGT1A1 and UGT1A7 than corylin which did not inhibit UGT1A1, UGT1A3, UGT1A7, UGT1A8, UGT1A10, and UGT2B4. Data fitting using Dixon and Lineweaver-Burk plots demonstrated the noncompetitive inhibition of bavachalcone against UGT1A1 and UGT1A7-mediated 4-MU glucuronidation reaction. The values of inhibition kinetic parameters (Ki) were 5.41 μM and 4.51 μM for UGT1A1 and UGT1A7, respectively. The results of present study suggested that there was a possibility of UGT1A1 and UGT1A7 inhibition-based herb-drug interaction associated with bavachalcone and provided the basis for further in vivo studies to investigate the HDI potential between bavachalcone and UGT substrates. Lina Shan, Shuman Yang, Gang Zhang, Dun Zhou, Zhenyu Qiu, Lei Tian, Hongxia Yuan, Yujun Feng, and Xianbao Shi Copyright © 2014 Lina Shan et al. All rights reserved. Wind Turbine Pitch Control and Load Mitigation Using an Adaptive Approach Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:21:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/719803/ We present an application of adaptive output feedback control design to wind turbine collective pitch control and load mitigation. Our main objective is the design of an output feedback controller without wind speed estimation, ensuring that the generator speed tracks the reference trajectory with robustness to uncertain parameters and time-varying disturbances (mainly the uniform wind disturbance across the wind turbine rotor). The wind turbine model CART (controls advanced research turbine) developed by the national renewable energy laboratory (NREL) is used to validate the performance of the proposed adaptive controller using the FAST (fatigue, aerodynamics, structures, and turbulence) code. A comparative study is also conducted between the proposed controller and the most popular methods in practice: gain scheduling PI (GSPI) controls and disturbance accommodating control (DAC) methods. The results show better performance of output feedback controller over the other two methods. Moreover, based on the FAST software and LQR analysis in the reference model selection of adaptive controller, tradeoff can be achieved between control performance and loads mitigation. Danyong Li, Yongduan Song, Wenchuan Cai, Peng Li, and Hamid R. Karimi Copyright © 2014 Danyong Li et al. All rights reserved. Composition and Fatty Acid Profile of Goat Meat Sausages with Added Rice Bran Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:20:10 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijfs/2014/686298/ A scientific consensus on the relationship between obesity, obesity related diseases, and diet has emerged. One of the factors is overconsumption of the red meats such as pork and beef. Goat meat has the potential to replace these traditionally consumed meats. Rice bran is a rich source of antioxidants such as vitamin E. In this study, goat meat sausages were formulated to contain 0, 1.5 or 3 percent stabilized rice bran. Proximate and fatty acid composition, α-tocopherol, cholesterol concentration, and antioxidant activities of cooked goat meat sausages containing varying percentages of rice bran were measured. Data were analyzed using a fixed effects model. The fat percentage in the goat meat sausages increased in response to increasing rice bran percentages . Saturated fatty acids concentration decreased linearly , while unsaturated fatty acids and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids increased linearly in response to increasing rice bran percentages . The concentration of α-tocopherol in sausages increased linearly in response to increasing rice bran percentages . Also, antioxidant activity increased linearly in sausages in response to added rice bran . The cholesterol concentration of sausages did not vary significantly in response to added rice bran. Fatemeh Malekian, Margarita Khachaturyan, Sebhatu Gebrelul, and James F. Henson Copyright © 2014 Fatemeh Malekian et al. All rights reserved. Multisensor Based Neutral Function Identification of Solenoid Valve Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:15:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2014/384973/ Condition monitoring of hydraulic systems has been using automatic control in industrial system. In this paper, a sensor network based intelligent control is proposed for efficient solenoid valve identification. The detection system learns to detect the change of output pressure of multipoints that represent a more complicated task. Linear correlation analysis is introduced for feature extraction, which allows for a significant reduction in the dimension of original data without compromising the change detection performance. Implemented as an agent identifying the valve types under measurement, the support vector machine classifier achieves a significant high accuracy in identification and an increase in deployment efficiency. Experimental results prove that the system is feasible for application designs and could be implemented on technological platforms. Yanqing Guo, Yongling Fu, Xiaoye Qi, and Chun Cao Copyright © 2014 Yanqing Guo et al. All rights reserved. Local Fractional Poisson and Laplace Equations with Applications to Electrostatics in Fractal Domain Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:15:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/amp/2014/590574/ From the local fractional calculus viewpoint, Poisson and Laplace equations were presented in this paper. Their applications to the electrostatics in fractal media are discussed and their local forms in the Cantor-type cylindrical coordinates are also obtained. Yang-Yang Li, Yang Zhao, Gong-Nan Xie, Dumitru Baleanu, Xiao-Jun Yang, and Kai Zhao Copyright © 2014 Yang-Yang Li et al. All rights reserved. A New Method for Predicting the Position of Gas Influx Based on PRP in Drilling Operations Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:15:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jam/2014/969465/ Accurately predicting the position of gas influx not only helps to analyze complex formation structure, but also can provide reference for taking effective measure, such as increasing mud density, increasing back pressure and casing packer, to suppress the gas influx. Predicting the accurate position of gas influx has been one of the urgent difficulties for drilling industry. With full consideration of the important factors such as the virtual mass force, viscous shear force, energy exchange, and narrow resistance, a new method for predicting the position of gas influx has been proposed based on pressure response time calculation. The gas equations of state (EOS), small perturbation theory, and the fourth-order Runge-Kutta method (R-K4) are adopted to solve the model. Also, the pressure response time plate (PRP) which presents the corresponding relationship between position of gas influx and wellhead parameters by several pressure wave response curves calculated by computer programming is given. The results showed that the PRP is unique at different well depth and gas influx rate, and the position of gas influx can be accurately determined by PRP with known wellhead parameters and detected response time. Therefore, without the help of downhole tools, the accurate mathematical method for predicting the position of gas influx is completely feasible. Xiangwei Kong, Yuanhua Lin, and Yijie Qiu Copyright © 2014 Xiangwei Kong et al. All rights reserved. The Research on Modeling and Simulation of TFE Polymerization Process Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:15:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/365486/ PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) is the fluorinated straight-chain polymer, made by the polymerization of tetrafluoroethylene monomer; it is used widely because of its excellent performance and can be obtained by the polymerization of body, solutions, suspensions, and emulsions. But only the last two are the main ways. This research paper makes simulation based on Polymer Plus. It uses the emulsion polymerization method at background to carry out a semibatch reactor system. Upon the actual production conditions, simulation process under the steady state conditions is used to analyze the effects of the changes on operating conditions; the corresponding dynamic model is created to analyze the impact of the changes of conditions on the entire system. Moreover, the amount of APS which plays an important part in this reaction is discussed for getting the most suitable amount of initiator. Because of less research work on this job, it is so difficult to find the related data from the literature. Therefore, this research will have a great significance for the process of the tetrafluoroethylene emulsion polymerization in the future. Jing Gao Sun and Qin Cao Copyright © 2014 Jing Gao Sun and Qin Cao. All rights reserved. Tribological Performance and Lubrication Mechanism of Alkylimidazolium Dialkyl Phosphates Ionic Liquids as Lubricants for Si3N4-Ti3SiC2 Contacts Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:15:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2014/548658/ The tribological performance of Si3N4-Ti3SiC2 contacts lubricated by alkylimidazolium dialkyl phosphates ionic liquids (ILs) was investigated using an Optimol SRV-IV oscillating reciprocating friction and wear tester at room temperature (25°C) and 100°C. Glycerol and tributyl phosphate (TBP) were also selected as lubricants for Si3N4-Ti3SiC2 contacts to study the tribological properties under the same experimental conditions for comparison. Results show that the alkylimidazolium dialkyl phosphates ILs were effective in reducing the friction and wear for Si3N4-Ti3SiC2contacts, and their performance is superior to that of glycerol and TBP. The SEM/EDS and XPS results reveal that the excellent tribological endurance of alkylimidazolium dialkyl phosphates ILs is mainly attributed to the high load-carrying capacity of the ILs and the formation of surface protective films consisting of TiO2, SiOx, titanium phosphate, amines, and nitrogen oxides by the tribochemical reactions. Hai-zhong Wang, Dan Qiao, Song-wei Zhang, Da-peng Feng, and Jin-jun Lu Copyright © 2014 Hai-zhong Wang et al. All rights reserved. Modelling the Influence of Awareness Programs by Media on the Drinking Dynamics Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:14:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/938080/ We develop a nonlinear mathematical model with the effect of awareness programs on the binge drinking. Due to the fact that awareness programs are capable of inducing behavioral changes in nondrinkers, we introduce a separate class by avoiding contacts with the heavy drinkers. Furthermore we assume that cumulative density of awareness programs increases at a rate proportional to the number of heavy drinkers. We establish some sufficient conditions for the stability of the alcohol free and the alcohol present equilibria and give some numerical simulations to explain our main result. Our results show that awareness programs is an effective measure in reducing alcohol problems. Hai-Feng Huo and Qian Wang Copyright © 2014 Hai-Feng Huo and Qian Wang. All rights reserved. Focusing Modeling of OPFC Linear Array Transducer by Using Distributed Point Source Method Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:14:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/840748/ The improvement of ultrasonic phased array detection technology is a major concern of engineering community. Orthotropic piezoelectric fiber composite (OPFC) can be constructed to multielement linear array which may be applied conveniently to actuators and sensors. The phased array transducers can generate special directional strong actuator power and high sensitivity for its orthotropic performance. Focusing beam of the linear phased array transducer is obtained simply only by adjusting a parabolic time delay. In this work, the distributed point source method (DPSM) is used to model the ultrasonic field. DPSM is a newly developed mesh-free numerical technique that has been developed for solving a variety of engineering problems. This work gives the basic theory of this method and solves the problems from the application of new OPFC phased array transducer. Compared with traditional transducer, the interaction effect of two OPFC linear phased array transducers is also modeled in the same medium, which shows that the pressure beam produced by the new transducer is narrower or more collimated than that produced by the conventional transducer at different angles. DPSM can be used to analyze and optimally design the OPFC linear phased array transducer. Ziping Wang and Ying Luo Copyright © 2014 Ziping Wang and Ying Luo. All rights reserved. Stability of a Class of Coupled Systems Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:13:35 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/835765/ We consider a class of coupled systems with damping terms. By using multiplier method and the estimation techniques of the energy, we show that even if the kernel function is nonincreasing and integrable without additional conditions, the energy of the system decays also to zero in a good rate. Kun-Peng Jin Copyright © 2014 Kun-Peng Jin. All rights reserved. Improved Artificial Bee Colony Algorithm and Its Application in LQR Controller Optimization Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:12:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/695637/ In order to get the optimal performance of controller and improve the design efficiency, artificial bee colony (ABC) algorithm as a metaheuristic approach which is inspired by the collective foraging behavior of honey bee swarms is considered for optimal linear quadratic regulator (LQR) design in this paper. Furthermore, for accelerating the convergence speed and enhancing the diversities of population of the traditional ABC algorithm, improved solution searching approach is proposed creatively. The proposed approach refers to the procedure of differential mutation in differential evolutionary (DE) algorithm and produces uniform distributed food sources in employed bee phase to avoid local optimal solution. Meanwhile, during the onlooker bees searching stage where the solution search area has been narrowed by employed bees, new solutions are generated around the solution with higher fitness value to keep the fitness values increasing monotonously. The improved ABC algorithm is applied to the optimization of LQR controller for the circular-rail double inverted pendulum system, and the simulation results show the effect on the proposed optimization problem. Haiquan Wang, Lei Liao, Dongyun Wang, Shengjun Wen, and Mingcong Deng Copyright © 2014 Haiquan Wang et al. All rights reserved. On the Analyticity for the Generalized Quadratic Derivative Complex Ginzburg-Landau Equation Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:11:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/607028/ We study the analytic property of the (generalized) quadratic derivative Ginzburg-Landau equation in any spatial dimension with rough initial data. For , we prove the analyticity of local solutions to the (generalized) quadratic derivative Ginzburg-Landau equation with large rough initial data in modulation spaces . For , we obtain the analytic regularity of global solutions to the fractional quadratic derivative Ginzburg-Landau equation with small initial data in . The strategy is to develop uniform and dyadic exponential decay estimates for the generalized Ginzburg-Landau semigroup to overcome the derivative in the nonlinear term. Chunyan Huang Copyright © 2014 Chunyan Huang. All rights reserved. Application of the Artificial Bee Colony Algorithm for Solving the Set Covering Problem Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:10:39 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/189164/ The set covering problem is a formal model for many practical optimization problems. In the set covering problem the goal is to choose a subset of the columns of minimal cost that covers every row. Here, we present a novel application of the artificial bee colony algorithm to solve the non-unicost set covering problem. The artificial bee colony algorithm is a recent swarm metaheuristic technique based on the intelligent foraging behavior of honey bees. Experimental results show that our artificial bee colony algorithm is competitive in terms of solution quality with other recent metaheuristic approaches for the set covering problem. Broderick Crawford, Ricardo Soto, Rodrigo Cuesta, and Fernando Paredes Copyright © 2014 Broderick Crawford et al. All rights reserved. New Rational Homoclinic and Rogue Waves for Davey-Stewartson Equation Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:09:56 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/572863/ A new method, homoclinic breather limit method (HBLM), for seeking rogue wave solution of nonlinear evolution equation is proposed. A new family of homoclinic breather wave solution, and rational homoclinic solution (homoclinic rogue wave) for DSI and DSII equations are obtained using the extended homoclinic test method and homoclinic breather limit method (HBLM), respectively. Moreover, rogue wave solution is exhibited as period of periodic wave in homoclinic breather wave approaches to infinite. This result shows that rogue wave can be generated by extreme behavior of homoclinic breather wave for higher dimensional nonlinear wave fields. Changfu Liu, Chuanjian Wang, Zhengde Dai, and Jun Liu Copyright © 2014 Changfu Liu et al. All rights reserved. Autonomous Position Estimation of a Mobile Node Based on Landmark and Localization Sensor Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:09:06 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2014/507942/ This study proposes an efficient position estimation method for localizing a mobile node in indoor environment. Although several conventional methods have been successfully applied for position estimation, they have some drawbacks such as low extendibility in an indoor space, intensive computation, and estimation errors. We propose a precise estimation approach based on a localization sensor and artificial landmarks. In our approach, a mobile node autonomously measures the location of landmarks attached to the ceiling with a localization sensor while moving across the landmarks and building a landmark map. And then, the node estimates its location under the ceiling using the map. In this process, we use a landmark histogram and a Kalman filter to reduce estimation errors. Several experiments performed using a mobile robot successfully demonstrated the feasibility of our proposed approach. Se-Jun Park, Jeong-Sik Park, Yong-Ho Seo, and Tae-Kyu Yang Copyright © 2014 Se-Jun Park et al. All rights reserved. Pathway Bridge Based Multiobjective Optimization Approach for Lurking Pathway Prediction Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:08:30 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/351095/ Ovarian carcinoma immunoreactive antigen-like protein 2 (OCIAD2) is a protein with unknown function. Frequently methylated or downregulated, OCIAD2 has been observed in kinds of tumors, and TGFβ signaling has been proved to induce the expression of OCIAD2. However, current pathway analysis tools do not cover the genes without reported interactions like OCIAD2 and also miss some significant genes with relatively lower expression. To investigate potential biological milieu of OCIAD2, especially in cancer microenvironment, a nova approach pbMOO was created to find the potential pathways from TGFβ to OCIAD2 by searching on the pathway bridge, which consisted of cancer enriched looping patterns from the complicated entire protein interactions network. The pbMOO approach was further applied to study the modulator of ligand TGFβ1, receptor TGFβR1, intermediate transfer proteins, transcription factor, and signature OCIAD2. Verified by literature and public database, the pathway TGFβ1- TGFβR1- SMAD2/3- SMAD4/AR-OCIAD2 was detected, which concealed the androgen receptor (AR) which was the possible transcription factor of OCIAD2 in TGFβ signal, and it well explained the mechanism of TGFβ induced OCIAD2 expression in cancer microenvironment, therefore providing an important clue for the future functional analysis of OCIAD2 in tumor pathogenesis. Rengjing Zhang, Chen Zhao, Zixiang Xiang, and Xiaobo Zhou Copyright © 2014 Rengjing Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Resource Constrained Project Scheduling Subject to Due Dates: Preemption Permitted with Penalty Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:08:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aor/2014/505716/ Extensive research works have been carried out in resource constrained project scheduling problem. However, scarce researches have studied the problems in which a setup cost must be incurred if activities are preempted. In this research, we investigate the resource constrained project scheduling problem to minimize the total project cost, considering earliness-tardiness and preemption penalties. A mixed integer programming formulation is proposed for the problem. The resulting problem is NP-hard. So, we try to obtain a satisfying solution using simulated annealing (SA) algorithm. The efficiency of the proposed algorithm is tested based on 150 randomly produced examples. Statistical comparison in terms of the computational times and objective function indicates that the proposed algorithm is efficient and effective. Behrouz Afshar-Nadjafi Copyright © 2014 Behrouz Afshar-Nadjafi. All rights reserved. Longitudinal Relationship between Plasma Reactive Oxygen Metabolites and Periodontal Condition in the Maintenance Phase of Periodontal Treatment Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:06:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/dm/2014/489292/ Aim. The present cohort study describes the longitudinal relationship between plasma oxidative status and periodontitis progression during the maintenance phase of treatment. Materials and Methods. Forty-five patients (mean age 58.8 years) were monitored from 2008 to 2013. Periodontal conditions, including probing pocket depth (PPD) and clinical attachment level (CAL), were recorded. Measurements of plasma reactive oxygen metabolites (ROM) and biologic antioxidant potential (BAP) were performed to evaluate plasma oxidative status. The patients were assigned into 2 groups as low and high plasma ROM level using a cut-off value which was median of plasma ROM level at baseline. Results. In the subjects with low plasma ROM level at baseline, changes in mean CAL were positively correlated with changes in plasma ROM levels, bleeding on probing, and plaque control record, but not with PPD. In the subjects with high plasma ROM at baseline, changes in CAL were significantly associated with only PPD at baseline. On the other hands there were no significant associations between changes in CAL and those in plasma BAP levels. Conclusions. When plasma ROM level in periodontitis patients was low, increases in plasma ROM level were associated with those in CAL during the maintenance phase of treatment. Tatsuya Machida, Takaaki Tomofuji, Daisuke Ekuni, Mayu Yamane, Toshiki Yoneda, Yuya Kawabata, Kota Kataoka, Naofumi Tamaki, and Manabu Morita Copyright © 2014 Tatsuya Machida et al. All rights reserved. Evaluation of a Crataegus-Based Multiherb Formula for Dyslipidemia: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:05:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/365742/ Background. We for the first time examined the effects of a multiherb formula containing Crataegus pinnatifida (1 g daily), Alisma orientalis, Stigma maydis, Ganoderma lucidum, Polygonum multiflorum, and Morus alba on plasma lipid and glucose levels in Chinese patients with dyslipidemia. Methods. In this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 42 patients were randomized at a ratio of 1 : 1 to receive the herbal formula or placebo for 12 weeks and 40 patients completed the study. Lipid profiles, glucose, glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c), and laboratory safety parameters were performed before and after treatment. Results. The difference in the changes in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels between placebo and active treatment (−9%) was significantly better with active treatment. HbA1c levels significantly decreased by −3.9% in the active treatment group, but the change was not significantly different from that with placebo (−1.1%) . There were no apparent adverse effects or changes in laboratory safety parameters with either treatment. Conclusions. The multiherb formula had mild beneficial effects on plasma LDL-C after 12-weeks treatment in subjects with dyslipidemia without any noticeable adverse effects. Miao Hu, Weiwei Zeng, and Brian Tomlinson Copyright © 2014 Miao Hu et al. All rights reserved. Nontrivial Solutions for Asymmetric Kirchhoff Type Problems Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:05:18 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/163645/ We consider a class of particular Kirchhoff type problems with a right-hand side nonlinearity which exhibits an asymmetric growth at and in . Namely, it is 4-linear at and 4-superlinear at . However, it need not satisfy the Ambrosetti-Rabinowitz condition on the positive semiaxis. Some existence results for nontrivial solution are established by combining Mountain Pass Theorem and a variant version of Mountain Pass Theorem with Moser-Trudinger inequality. Ruichang Pei and Jihui Zhang Copyright © 2014 Ruichang Pei and Jihui Zhang. All rights reserved. Effect of the Combination of Gelam Honey and Ginger on Oxidative Stress and Metabolic Profile in Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Sprague-Dawley Rats Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:58:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/160695/ Diabetic complications occur as a result of increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) due to long term hyperglycaemia. Honey and ginger have been shown to exhibit antioxidant activity which can scavenge ROS. The main aim of this study was to evaluate the antioxidant and antidiabetic effects of gelam honey, ginger, and their combination. Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into 2 major groups which consisted of diabetic and nondiabetic rats. Diabetes was induced with streptozotocin intramuscularly (55 mg/kg body weight). Each group was further divided into 4 smaller groups according to the supplements administered: distilled water, honey (2 g/kg body weight), ginger (60 mg/kg body weight), and honey + ginger. Body weight and glucose levels were recorded weekly, while blood from the orbital sinus was obtained after 3 weeks of supplementation for the estimation of metabolic profile: glucose, triglyceride (TG), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), reduced glutathione (GSH): oxidized glutathione (GSSG), and malondialdehyde (MDA). The combination of gelam honey and ginger did not show hypoglycaemic potential; however, the combination treatment reduced significantly () SOD and CAT activities as well as MDA level, while GSH level and GSH/GSSG ratio were significantly elevated () in STZ-induced diabetic rats compared to diabetic control rats. Nur Fathiah Abdul Sani, Levin Kesu Belani, Chong Pui Sin, Siti Nor Amilah Abdul Rahman, Srijit Das, Thent Zar Chi, Suzana Makpol, and Yasmin Anum Mohd Yusof Copyright © 2014 Nur Fathiah Abdul Sani et al. All rights reserved. Urinary Tract Infection among Antiretroviral Therapy Users and Nonusers in Jimma University Specialized Hospital, Jimma, Ethiopia Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:57:41 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijmicro/2014/968716/ Background. The introduction of antiretroviral therapy (ART) has dramatically reduced morbidity related with bacterial infection including urinary tract infection (UTI) among patients with HIV/AIDS. This study was carried out to determine the prevalence of UTI and identify common bacterial etiologies among HIV/AIDS patients of ART users and nonusers in Jimma University Specialized Hospital. Methods. A comparative cross sectional study was conducted from September to December 2012 on 367 ART users and 114 nonuser patients attending ART clinic. Sociodemographic characteristics, associated factors, and urine samples were collected; culture, biochemical tests, Gram stain, and drug sensitivity tests were done. Results. Of 467 examined urine samples, 56 (12%) had significant bacterial growth. Forty-six (12.5%) of the cases were ART users and 10 (10%) were nonusers. E. coli was the predominant isolate in both ART users (25 (54.3%)) and nonusers (6 (6%)). Majority of the bacterial isolates were from females. Most (>75%) of the isolates from both groups were resistant to ampicillin and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole but sensitive to norfloxacine, ceftriaxone, and chloramphenicol. Conclusion. There was no statistically significant difference regarding the prevalence of significant bacterial growth between ART users and nonusers. Therefore, it is recommended that UTI in both groups should be managed with drugs that show sensitivity. Serkadis Debalke, Waqtola Cheneke, Haimanot Tassew, and Mohammed Awol Copyright © 2014 Serkadis Debalke et al. All rights reserved. An FPGA Task Placement Algorithm Using Reflected Binary Gray Space Filling Curve Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:55:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijrc/2014/495080/ With the arrival of partial reconfiguration technology, modern FPGAs support tasks that can be loaded in (removed from) the FPGA individually without interrupting other tasks already running on the same FPGA. Many online task placement algorithms designed for such partially reconfigurable systems have been proposed to provide efficient and fast task placement. A new approach for online placement of modules on reconfigurable devices, by managing the free space using a run-length based representation. This representation allows the algorithm to insert or delete tasks quickly and also to calculate the fragmentation easily. In the proposed FPGA model, the CLBs are numbered according to reflected binary gray space filling curve model. The search algorithm will quickly identify a placement for the incoming task based on first fit mode or a fragmentation aware best fit mode. Simulation experiments indicate that the proposed techniques result in a low ratio of task rejection and high FPGA utilization compared to existing techniques. Senoj Joseph Olakkenghil and K. Baskaran Copyright © 2014 Senoj Joseph Olakkenghil and K. Baskaran. All rights reserved. Laparoscopic Resection for Rectal Cancer: What Is the Evidence? Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:54:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/347810/ Laparoscopic colectomy for colon cancer is a well-established procedure supported by several well-conducted large-scale randomised controlled trials. Patients could now be conferred the benefits of the minimally invasive approach while retaining comparable oncologic outcomes to the open approach. However, the benefits of laparoscopic proctectomy for rectal cancer remained controversial. While the laparoscopic approach is more technically demanding, results from randomised controlled trials regarding long term oncologic outcomes are only beginning to be reported. The impacts of bladder and sexual functions following proctectomy are considerable and are important contributing factors to the patients’ quality of life in the long-term. These issues present a delicate dilemma to the surgeon in his choice of operative approach in tackling rectal cancer. This is compounded further by the rapid proliferation of various laparoscopic techniques including the hand assisted, robotic assisted, and single port laparoscopy. This review article aims to draw on the significant studies which have been conducted to highlight the short- and long-term outcomes and evidence for laparoscopic resection for rectal cancer. Dedrick Kok-Hong Chan, Choon-Seng Chong, Bettina Lieske, and Ker-Kan Tan Copyright © 2014 Dedrick Kok-Hong Chan et al. All rights reserved. Joint Power and Multiple Access Control for Wireless Mesh Network with Rose Projection Method Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:53:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/352809/ This paper investigates the utility maximization problem for the downlink of the multi-interface multichannel wireless mesh network with orthogonal frequency division multiple access. A cross-layer joint power and multiple access control algorithm are proposed. Rosen projection matrix is combined with Solodov projection techniques to build a three-memory gradient Rosen projection method, which is applied to solve this optimization problem. The convergence analysis is given and simulations show that the proposed solution achieves significant throughput compared with existing approaches. Meiqin Tang, Lili Shang, Yalin Xin, Xiaohua Liu, and Xinjiang Wei Copyright © 2014 Meiqin Tang et al. All rights reserved. Novel MSVPWM to Reduce the Inductor Current Ripple for Z-Source Inverter in Electric Vehicle Applications Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:52:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/586082/ A novel modified space vector pulse width modulation (MSVPWM) strategy for Z-Source inverter is presented. By rearranging the position of shoot-through states, the frequency of inductor current ripple is kept constant. Compared with existing MSVPWM strategies, the proposed approach can reduce the maximum inductor current ripple. So the volume of Z-source network inductor can be designed smaller, which brings the beneficial effect on the miniaturization of the electric vehicle controller. Theoretical findings in the novel MSVPWM for Z-Source inverter have been verified by experiment results. Qianfan Zhang, Shuai Dong, Ping Xue, Chaowei Zhou, and ShuKang Cheng Copyright © 2014 Qianfan Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Production and Cytotoxicity of Extracellular Insoluble and Droplets of Soluble Melanin by Streptomyces lusitanus DMZ-3 Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:49:37 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/306895/ A Streptomyces lusitanus DMZ-3 strain with potential to synthesize both insoluble and soluble melanins was detected. Melanins are quite distinguished based on their solubility for varied biotechnological applications. The present investigation reveals the enhanced production of insoluble and soluble melanins in tyrosine medium by a single culture. Streptomyces lusitanus DMZ-3 was characterized by 16S rRNA gene analysis. An enhanced production of 5.29 g/L insoluble melanin was achieved in a submerged bioprocess following response surface methodology. Combined interactive effect of temperature (50°C), pH (8.5), tyrosine (2.0 g/L), and beef extract (0.5 g/L) were found to be critical variables for enhanced production in central composite design analysis. An optimized indigenous slant culture system was an innovative approach for the successful production (264 mg/L) of pure soluble melanin from the droplets formed on the surface of the culture. Both insoluble and soluble melanins were confirmed and characterized by Chemical, reactions, UV, FTIR, and TLC analysis. First time, cytotoxic study of melanin using brine shrimps was reported. Maximum cytotoxic activity of soluble melanin was Lc50-0.40 µg/mL and insoluble melanin was Lc50-0.80 µg/mL. D. N. Madhusudhan, Bi Bi Zainab Mazhari, Syed G. Dastager, and Dayanand Agsar Copyright © 2014 D. N. Madhusudhan et al. All rights reserved. A New System of Multivalued Mixed Variational Inequality Problem Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:45:15 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/982606/ We consider a new system of multivalued mixed variational inequality problem, which includes some known systems of variational inequalities as special cases. Under suitable conditions, the existence of solutions for the system of multivalued mixed variational inequality problem and the convergence of iterative sequences generated by the generalized -projection algorithm are proved. A perturbational algorithm for solving a special case of multivalued mixed variational inequality problem is formally constructed. The results concerned with the existence of solutions and the convergence of iterative sequences generated by the perturbational algorithm are also given. Some known results are improved and generalized. Xi Li and Xue-song Li Copyright © 2014 Xi Li and Xue-song Li. All rights reserved. Facial and Periorbital Cellulitis due to Skin Peeling with Jet Stream by an Unauthorized Person Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:42:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cridm/2014/529153/ Technologies and devices for cosmetic procedures are developing with each passing day. However, increased and unauthorized use of such emerging technologies may also lead to increases in unexpected results and complications as well. Here, we report a case of facial cellulitis after a “beauty parlor” session of skin cleaning with jet stream peeling device in 19-year old female patient for the first time. Complications due to improper and unauthorized use of jet stream peeling devices may also cause doubts about the safety and impair the reputation of the technology as well. In order to avoid irreversible complications, local authorities should follow the technology and update the regulations where the dermatologists should take an active role. Asli Feride Kaptanoglu, Didem Mullaaziz, and Kaya Suer Copyright © 2014 Asli Feride Kaptanoglu et al. All rights reserved. GRE T2-Weighted MRI: Principles and Clinical Applications Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:39:56 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/312142/ The sequence of a multiecho gradient recalled echo (GRE) T2-weighted imaging (T2WI) is a relatively new magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique. In contrast to T2 relaxation, which acquires a spin echo signal, T2 relaxation acquires a gradient echo signal. The sequence of a GRE T2WI requires high uniformity of the magnetic field. GRE T2WI can detect the smallest changes in uniformity in the magnetic field and can improve the rate of small lesion detection. In addition, the T2 value can indirectly reflect changes in tissue biochemical components. Moreover, it can be used for the early diagnosis and quantitative diagnosis of some diseases. This paper reviews the principles and clinical applications as well as the advantages and disadvantages of GRE T2WI. Meng Yue Tang, Tian Wu Chen, Xiao Ming Zhang, and Xiao Hua Huang Copyright © 2014 Meng Yue Tang et al. All rights reserved. A Relationship: Word Alignment, Phrase Table, and Translation Quality Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:36:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/438106/ In the last years, researchers conducted several studies to evaluate the machine translation quality based on the relationship between word alignments and phrase table. However, existing methods usually employ ad-hoc heuristics without theoretical support. So far, there is no discussion from the aspect of providing a formula to describe the relationship among word alignments, phrase table, and machine translation performance. In this paper, on one hand, we focus on formulating such a relationship for estimating the size of extracted phrase pairs given one or more word alignment points. On the other hand, a corpus-motivated pruning technique is proposed to prune the default large phrase table. Experiment proves that the deduced formula is feasible, which not only can be used to predict the size of the phrase table, but also can be a valuable reference for investigating the relationship between the translation performance and phrase tables based on different links of word alignment. The corpus-motivated pruning results show that nearly 98% of phrases can be reduced without any significant loss in translation quality. Liang Tian, Derek F. Wong, Lidia S. Chao, and Francisco Oliveira Copyright © 2014 Liang Tian et al. All rights reserved. Improvement of Weldment Properties by Hot Forming Quenching of Friction Stir Welded TWB Sheet Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:36:06 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/257510/ The purpose of this study is to improve the mechanical properties and formability of friction stir welded tailor-welded blanks (TWBs) of Al6061 alloy with a new forming method called hot forming quenching (HFQ) in which solid-solution heat-treated aluminum sheets are formed at elevated temperature. Forming and quenching during HFQ are simultaneously performed with the forming die for the solid-solution heat-treated sheet. In this study, specimens of aluminum TWBs were prepared by friction stir welding (FSW) with a butt joint. The effectiveness of FSW joining was evaluated by observation of the macrostructure for different sheet thicknesses. In order to evaluate the formability of TWBs by HFQ, a hemisphere dome stretching test of the limit dome height achieved without specimen failure was performed with various tool temperatures. A Vickers test was also performed to measure weldment hardness as a function of position. The formability and mechanical properties of products formed by HFQ are compared with those formed by conventional forming methods, demonstrating the suitability of HFQ for sheet metal forming of friction stir welded TWBs. Dae-Hoon Ko, Jae-Hong Kim, Dae-Cheol Ko, and Byung-Min Kim Copyright © 2014 Dae-Hoon Ko et al. All rights reserved. Functional Development of the Circadian Clock in the Zebrafish Pineal Gland Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:35:12 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/235781/ The zebrafish constitutes a powerful model organism with unique advantages for investigating the vertebrate circadian timing system and its regulation by light. In particular, the remarkably early and rapid development of the zebrafish circadian system has facilitated exploring the factors that control the onset of circadian clock function during embryogenesis. Here, we review our understanding of the molecular basis underlying functional development of the central clock in the zebrafish pineal gland. Furthermore, we examine how the directly light-entrainable clocks in zebrafish cell lines have facilitated unravelling the general mechanisms underlying light-induced clock gene expression. Finally, we summarize how analysis of the light-induced transcriptome and miRNome of the zebrafish pineal gland has provided insight into the regulation of the circadian system by light, including the involvement of microRNAs in shaping the kinetics of light- and clock-regulated mRNA expression. The relative contributions of the pineal gland central clock and the distributed peripheral oscillators to the synchronization of circadian rhythms at the whole animal level are a crucial question that still remains to be elucidated in the zebrafish model. Zohar Ben-Moshe, Nicholas S. Foulkes, and Yoav Gothilf Copyright © 2014 Zohar Ben-Moshe et al. All rights reserved. Evidence-Based Medicinal Plants for Modern Chronic Diseases Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:33:19 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/948385/ Yong-Ouk You, James William Daily III, Tong Ho Kang, Young-Rae Lee, and Serkan Selli Copyright © 2014 Yong-Ouk You et al. All rights reserved. Bipolar Thermofusion BiClamp 150 in Thyroidectomy: A Review of 1156 Operations Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:59:34 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/707265/ Objectives. To compare the bipolar thermofusion BiClamp 150 with conventional ligature techniques for thyroid gland surgery, and report the advantages/disadvantages of both techniques. Methods. In this retrospective comparative study, all thyroid gland operations performed in the ENT Clinic Faculty Hospital Ostrava from 2006 to 2013 were included (1156 operations, 2122 lobes). Patients were categorized into two groups according to the type of vessel sealing method used, group I (BiClamp, operations) and group II (conventional ligature, operations). The number of revision surgeries due to wound hematoma was recorded as a bleeding event. Statistical analysis of the complication rate (bleeding rate, recurrent nerve palsy) and time of duration was performed. Results. The rate of revision surgery performed due to postoperative wound hematoma was significantly lower in group I (15/819, 1.83%) compared with group II (14/337, 4.15%) (). There was no statistically significant difference in the frequency of recurrent laryngeal nerve palsy between groups I and II (). The average surgery time was significantly shorter in group I (). Conclusion. Bipolar thermofusion BiClamp is an effective vessel sealing method that leads to a significant reduction in postoperative wound bleeding rates and reduces surgical time compared with conventional vessel ligature. Tomáš Pniak, Martin Formánek, Petr Matoušek, Karol Zeleník, and Pavel Komínek Copyright © 2014 Tomáš Pniak et al. All rights reserved. Almost Sure Asymptotical Adaptive Synchronization for Neutral-Type Neural Networks with Stochastic Perturbation and Markovian Switching Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:59:31 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/479084/ The problem of almost sure (a.s.) asymptotic adaptive synchronization for neutral-type neural networks with stochastic perturbation and Markovian switching is researched. Firstly, we proposed a new criterion of a.s. asymptotic stability for a general neutral-type stochastic differential equation which extends the existing results. Secondly, based upon this stability criterion, by making use of Lyapunov functional method and designing an adaptive controller, we obtained a condition of a.s. asymptotic adaptive synchronization for neutral-type neural networks with stochastic perturbation and Markovian switching. The synchronization condition is expressed as linear matrix inequality which can be easily solved by Matlab. Finally, we introduced a numerical example to illustrate the effectiveness of the method and result obtained in this paper. Wuneng Zhou, Xueqing Yang, Jun Yang, Anding Dai, and Huashan Liu Copyright © 2014 Wuneng Zhou et al. All rights reserved. Multivariate-Statistical Assessment of Heavy Metals for Agricultural Soils in Northern China Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:56:41 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/517020/ The study evaluated eight heavy metals content and soil pollution from agricultural soils in northern China. Multivariate and geostatistical analysis approaches were used to determine the anthropogenic and natural contribution of soil heavy metal concentrations. Single pollution index and integrated pollution index could be used to evaluate soil heavy metal risk. The results show that the first factor explains 27.3% of the eight soil heavy metals with strong positive loadings on Cu, Zn, and Cd, which indicates that Cu, Zn, and Cd are associated with and controlled by anthropic activities. The average value of heavy metal is lower than the second grade standard values of soil environmental quality standards in China. Single pollution index is lower than 1, and the Nemerow integrated pollution index is 0.305, which means that study area has not been polluted. The semivariograms of soil heavy metal single pollution index fitted spherical and exponential models. The variable ratio of single pollution index showed moderately spatial dependence. Heavy metal contents showed relative safety in the study area. Pingguo Yang, Miao Yang, Renzhao Mao, and Hongbo Shao Copyright © 2014 Pingguo Yang et al. All rights reserved. Stability Analysis of Fractional-Order Nonlinear Systems with Delay Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:55:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/301235/ Stability analysis of fractional-order nonlinear systems with delay is studied. We propose the definition of Mittag-Leffler stability of time-delay system and introduce the fractional Lyapunov direct method by using properties of Mittag-Leffler function and Laplace transform. Then some new sufficient conditions ensuring asymptotical stability of fractional-order nonlinear system with delay are proposed firstly. And the application of Riemann-Liouville fractional-order systems is extended by the fractional comparison principle and the Caputo fractional-order systems. Numerical simulations of an example demonstrate the universality and the effectiveness of the proposed method. Yu Wang and Tianzeng Li Copyright © 2014 Yu Wang and Tianzeng Li. All rights reserved. Atmospheric Environment Fabrication of Composite Films by Ethanol Catalytic Combustion and Its Use as Counter Electrodes for Dye-Sensitized Soar Cells Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:55:03 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/amse/2014/292780/ The composite films which consist of amorphous carbon, carbon nanotube, and iron nanoparticles were prepared by ethanol catalytic combustion in atmospheric environment. The as-prepared composite films have good electrocatalytic activity and high conductivity which is due to their particular structure. The efficiency of the composite films based dye-sensitized soar cells (DSSCs) is closed to that of the Pt based one. Most importantly, the DSSC employing the composite films presents a higher FF than those of Pt based solar cell. In addition, it is a simple method for mass production of composite films counter electrode (CE) which is expected to reduce the cost of fabricating DSSCs. Xiaoping Zou and Cuiliu Wei Copyright © 2014 Xiaoping Zou and Cuiliu Wei. All rights reserved. A New Design for All-Normal Near Zero Dispersion Photonic Crystal Fiber with Selective Liquid Infiltration for Broadband Supercontinuum Generation at 1.55 μm Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:47:53 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jpho/2014/728592/ A new design of all-normal and near zero flattened dispersion based on all-silica photonic crystal fibers (PCFs) using selectively liquid infiltration technique has been proposed to realize smooth broadband supercontinuum generation (SCG). The investigation gives the details of the effect of different geometrical parameters along with the infiltrating liquids on the dispersion characteristics of the fiber. Numerical investigations establish a dispersion value of −0.48 ps/nm/km around the wavelength of 1.55 μm. The optimized design has been found to be suitable for SCG around the C band of wavelength with flat broadband wavelength band (375 nm bandwidth) and smooth spectrum with only a meter long of the PCF. The proposed structure also demonstrates good tunable properties that can help correct possible fabrication mismatch towards a better optimization design for various optical communication systems. Partha Sona Maji and Partha Roy Chaudhuri Copyright © 2014 Partha Sona Maji and Partha Roy Chaudhuri. All rights reserved. Baseband Transceiver Design of a High Definition Radio FM System Using Joint Theoretical Analysis and FPGA Implementation Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:47:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijap/2014/580479/ Advances in wireless communications have enabled various technologies for wireless digital communication. In the field of digital radio broadcasting, several specifications have been proposed, such as Eureka-147 and digital radio mondiale (DRM). These systems require a new spectrum assignment, which incurs heavy cost due to the depletion of the available spectrum. Therefore, the in-band on-channel (IBOC) system has been developed to work in the same band with the conventional analog radio and to provide digital broadcasting services. This paper discusses the function and algorithm of the high definition (HD) radio frequency modulation (FM) digital radio broadcasting system. Content includes data format allocation, constellation mapping, orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) modulation of the transmitter, timing synchronization, OFDM demodulation, integer and fraction carrier frequency (integer carrier frequency offset (ICFO) and fractional CFO (FCFO)) estimation, and channel estimation of the receiver. When we implement this system to the field programmable gate array (FPGA) based on a hardware platform, both theoretical and practical aspects have been considered to accommodate the available hardware resources. Chien-Sheng Chen, Chyuan-Der Lu, Ho-Nien Shou, and Le-Wei Lin Copyright © 2014 Chien-Sheng Chen et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Three Colostrum Diets on Passive Transfer of Immunity and Preweaning Health in Calves on a California Dairy following Colostrum Management Training Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:38:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/vmi/2014/698741/ Following colostrum management training, a randomized field trial was conducted on a California dairy to determine the effect of supplementing pooled colostrum with either colostrum-derived replacer (CDR) or second-milking colostrum (transition milk) on failure of passive transfer (FPT) and preweaning morbidity risks. A total of 166 calves were randomly assigned to 4L first-milking pooled colostrum (treatment 1), 2L first-milking pooled colostrum and 2L of CDR (treatment 2), or 2L first-milking pooled colostrum and 2L second-milking pooled colostrum (treatment 3). Mean 24-hour serum TP and IgG for treatments 2 (TP 5.2 g/dL, IgG 15.9 g/L) and 3 (TP 5.4 g/dL, IgG 18.3 g/L) did not statistically differ but were significantly lower than for treatment 1 (TP 5.9 g/dL, IgG 24.6 g/L). Risk of FPT did not differ for treatments 1, 2, and 3 (0.0%, 9.3%, and 1.9%, resp.). Similarly, the preweaning risk of diarrhea (81.0%, 92.5%, and 87.0%, resp.) or pneumonia (6.9%, 13.2%, and 18.5%, resp.) did not differ between treatments. Feeding 4L first-milking pooled colostrum resulted in adequate passive transfer. When first-milking pooled colostrum quantity is inadequate, CDR or second-milking pooled colostrum can be used to supplement the required colostrum volume and IgG mass without adversely affecting the risks of FPT or preweaning diarrhea and pneumonia. Deniece R. Williams, Patrick Pithua, Angel Garcia, John Champagne, Deborah M. Haines, and Sharif S. Aly Copyright © 2014 Deniece R. Williams et al. All rights reserved. A New Measurement Method of Relative Volume Wear Ratio Based on Discharge Debris Composition Analysis in Micro-EDM Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:37:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/479609/ In microelectrical discharge machining (micro-EDM) milling process, due to the unavoidability of electrode wear, selection of electrode with high electrical erosion resistance and accurate electrode compensation is entitled to be conducted to ensure high precision and high quality. The RVWR is used as criterion for electrode wear characteristics and is fundamental to achieve accurate electrode compensation; however, it is hardly measured accurately with conventional methods. In this paper, firstly, the error of RVWR measured by conventional measurement method is analyzed. Thereafter, for accurately measuring RVWR, a new measurement method is proposed based on electrical debris composition analysis. The RVWR of widely used tungsten, molybdenum, and copper electrode in machining different materials is measured, respectively, and the optimum electrode is selected based on the measuring results. Finally, microgrooves on different materials are machined with tungsten electrode, and the experiment results show that the microstructures have good bottom surface profiles, which indicates that the proposed method is effective to precisely measure the RVWR and guarantee accurate electrode compensation in micro-EDM process. Wei Liu, Zhenyuan Jia, Shangbo Zou, and Xinyi Zheng Copyright © 2014 Wei Liu et al. All rights reserved. Prophylactic Intra-Arterial Injection of Vasodilator for Asymptomatic Vasospasm Converts the Patient to Symptomatic Vasospasm due to Severe Microcirculatory Imbalance Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:35:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/382484/ Object. The strategy to treat asymptomatic angiographic vasospasm following subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is controversial. In this study we review our consecutive vasospasm series and discuss an adequate treatment strategy for asymptomatic vasospasm. Methods. From January 2007 to December 2012 we treated 281 aneurysmal SAH cases, with postoperative angiography performed 9 ± 2 days after the onset of SAH. Four asymptomatic cases received intra-arterial (IA) injection of vasodilator due to angiographic vasospasm. All cases improved vasospasm immediately following intervention. But all cases turned symptomatic within 48 hours. We retrospectively analyzed the time-density angiography curve and calculated the time to peak (TTP), mean transit time (MTT), and relative blood flow (rBF). Relative blood flow was calculated as follows. The integration of the value of the time-density curve for the artery was divided by the same value for the internal carotid artery multiplied by the MTT. Results. The decrease in TTP and MTT for the etiologic artery was similar to that of the nonetiologic artery. But the improvement in rBF for the etiologic artery and nonetiologic artery was 10% and 17%, respectively. Blood supply to the spastic artery decreased due to iatrogenic steal. Conclusion. Prophylactic IA injection of vasodilator in cases of asymptomatic vasospasm can produce symptomatic vasospasm. Norihito Shimamura, Masato Naraoka, Naoya Matsuda, Kiyohide Kakuta, and Hiroki Ohkuma Copyright © 2014 Norihito Shimamura et al. All rights reserved. Molecularly Targeted Therapies in Multiple Myeloma Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:34:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/lrt/2014/976567/ Multiple myeloma (MM) is a hematological malignancy that remains incurable because most patients will eventually relapse or become refractory to the treatments. Although the treatments have improved, the major problem in MM is the resistance to therapy. Novel agents are currently in development for the treatment of relapsed/refractory MM, including immunomodulatory drugs, proteasome inhibitors, monoclonal antibodies, cell signaling targeted therapies, and strategies targeting the tumor microenvironment. We have previously reviewed in detail the contemporary immunomodulatory drugs, proteasome inhibitors, and monoclonal antibodies therapies for MM. Therefore, in this review, we focused on the role of molecular targeted therapies in the treatment of relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma, including cell signaling targeted therapies (HDAC, PI3K/AKT/mTOR, p38 MAPK, Hsp90, Wnt, Notch, Hedgehog, and cell cycle) and strategies targeting the tumor microenvironment (hypoxia, angiogenesis, integrins, CD44, CXCR4, and selectins). Although these novel agents have improved the therapeutic outcomes for MM patients, further development of new therapeutic agents is warranted. Pilar de la Puente, Barbara Muz, Feda Azab, Micah Luderer, and Abdel Kareem Azab Copyright © 2014 Pilar de la Puente et al. All rights reserved. Oscillation Criteria for Certain Even Order Neutral Delay Differential Equations Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:34:18 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijde/2014/437278/ We establish sufficient conditions for the oscillation of solutions of even order neutral type differential equations of the form . Ruba Al-Hamouri and Ali Zein Copyright © 2014 Ruba Al-Hamouri and Ali Zein. All rights reserved. Thermal Stability and Kinetic Study of Isotactic Polypropylene/Algerian Bentonite Nanocomposites Prepared via Melt Blending Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:33:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jpol/2014/426470/ Isotactic polypropylene (iPP)/bentonite nanocomposites were prepared via melt blending using bentonite clay originated from Maghnia (Algeria). This clay was, at a first stage, used in its pure form (PBT) and then organically modified by Hexadecyl ammonium chloride (OBT). The effect of Maghnia bentonite dispersion on the iPP matrix was investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and transmission electronic microscopy (TEM). DSC results evidenced that unmodified or organomodified bentonite can act as a nucleating agent increasing the rate of crystallites formation. Moreover, a thermogravimetry analysis confirmed a significant enhanced thermal stability of IPP/clay nanocomposites compared to pure IPP. The Flynn-Wall-Ozawa and Tang methods were applied to determine the activation energy of the degradation process. The apparent activation energy   of thermal degradation for IPP/clay nanocomposites was much higher than that of virgin iPP. Comparatively to PBT, results indicate that OBT has an important effect on pure iPP thermal stability. Tensile modulus, tensile strength, and elongation at break were also measured and compared with those of pure iPP. Fayçal Benhacine, Farida Yahiaoui, and Assia Siham Hadj-Hamou Copyright © 2014 Fayçal Benhacine et al. All rights reserved. Small Islets Transplantation Superiority to Large Ones: Implications from Islet Microcirculation and Revascularization Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:31:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jdr/2014/192093/ Pancreatic islet transplantation is a promising therapy to regain glycemic control in diabetic patients. The selection of ideal grafts is the basis to guarantee short-term effectivity and longevity of the transplanted islets. Contradictory to the traditional notion, recent findings implied the superiority of small islets for better transplantation outcomes rather than the large and intact ones. However, the mechanisms remain to be elucidated. Recent evidences emphasized the major impact of microcirculation on islet β-cell mass and function. And potentials in islet graft revascularization are crucial for their survival and preserved function in the recipient. In this study, we verified the distinct histological phenotype and functionality of small islets versus large ones both in vitro and in vivo. With efforts to exploring the differences in microcirculation and revascularization of islet grafts, we further evaluated local expressions of angiotensin and vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF-A) at different levels. Our findings reveal that, apart from the higher density of insulin-producing β-cells, small islets express less angiotensin and more angiotrophic VEGF-A. We therefore hypothesized a logical explanation of the small islet superiority for transplantation outcome from the aspects of facilitated microcirculation and revascularization intrinsically in small islets. Wenjuan Li, Ruxing Zhao, Jidong Liu, Meng Tian, Yiran Lu, Tianyi He, Meng Cheng, Kai Liang, Xia Li, Xiangdong Wang, Yu Sun, and Li Chen Copyright © 2014 Wenjuan Li et al. All rights reserved. Differential Transcript Profiles of MHC Class Ib(Qa-1, Qa-2, and Qa-10) and Aire Genes during the Ontogeny of Thymus and Other Tissues Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:30:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2014/159247/ Qa-2 and Qa-1 are murine nonclassical MHC class I molecules involved in the modulation of immune responses by interacting with T CD8+ and NK cell inhibitory receptors. During thymic education, the Aire gene imposes the expression of thousands of tissue-related antigens in the thymic medulla, permitting the negative selection events. Aiming to characterize the transcriptional profiles of nonclassical MHC class I genes in spatial-temporal association with the Aire expression, we evaluated the gene expression of H2-Q7(Qa-2), H2-T23(Qa-1), H2-Q10(Qa-10), and Aire during fetal and postnatal development of thymus and other tissues. In the thymus, H2-Q7(Qa-2) transcripts were detected at high levels throughout development and were positively correlated with Aire expression during fetal ages. H2-Q7(Qa-2) and H2-T23(Qa-1) showed distinct expression patterns with gradual increasing levels according to age in most tissues analyzed. H2-Q10(Qa-10) was preferentially expressed by the liver. The Aire transcriptional profile showed increased levels during the fetal period and was detectable in postnatal ages in the thymus. Overall, nonclassical MHC class I genes started to be expressed early during the ontogeny. Their levels varied according to age, tissue, and mouse strain analyzed. This differential expression may contribute to the distinct patterns of mouse susceptibility/resistance to infectious and noninfectious disorders. Breno Luiz Melo-Lima, Adriane Feijó Evangelista, Danielle Aparecida Rosa de Magalhães, Geraldo Aleixo Passos, Philippe Moreau, and Eduardo Antonio Donadi Copyright © 2014 Breno Luiz Melo-Lima et al. All rights reserved. In Vitro and In Vivo Leishmanicidal Activity of Astronium fraxinifolium (Schott) and Plectranthus amboinicus (Lour.) Spreng against Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:23:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/848293/ The aim of the present work was to evaluate antileishmanial activity of Astronium fraxinifolium and Plectranthus amboinicus. For the in vitro tests, essential oil of P. amboinicus (OEPA) and ethanolic extracts from A. fraxinifolium (EEAF) were incubated with 106  promastigotes of L. (Viannia) braziliensis. The OEPA was able to reduce the parasite growth after 48 h; nonetheless, all the EEAFs could totally abolish the parasite growth. For the in vivo studies, BALB/c mice were infected subcutaneously (s.c.) with 107  L. braziliensis promastigotes. Treatment was done by administering OEPA intralesionally (i.l.) for 14 days. No difference was found in lesion thickness when those animals were compared with the untreated animals. Further, golden hamsters were infected s.c. with 106  L. braziliensis promastigotes. The first protocol of treatment consisted of ethanolic leaf extract from A. fraxinifolium (ELEAF) administered i.l. for 4 days and a booster dose at the 7th day. The animals showed a significant reduction of lesion thickness in the 6th week, but it was not comparable to the animals treated with Glucantime. The second protocol consisted of 15 daily intralesional injections. The profiles of lesion thickness were similar to the standard treatment. In conclusion, in vivo studies showed a high efficacy when the infected animals were intralesionally treated with leaf ethanolic extract from A. fraxinifolium. Silvio César Gomes de Lima, Maria Jania Teixeira, José Evaldo Gonçalves Lopes Júnior, Selene Maia de Morais, Alba Fabiola Torres, Milena Aguiar Braga, Raphael Oliveira Rodrigues, Gilvandete Maria Pinheiro Santiago, Alice Costa Martins, and Aparecida Tiemi Nagao-Dias Copyright © 2014 Silvio César Gomes de Lima et al. All rights reserved. Antitumor and Antiangiogenic Activities of Curcumin in Cervical Cancer Xenografts in Nude Mice Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:17:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/817972/ To evaluate the effects of curcumin (CUR) on tumor progression and angiogenesis in cervical cancer- (CaSki-) implanted nude mice and on the angiogenic biomarkers: vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), and epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). CaSki cells were subcutaneously injected in nude mice to establish subcutaneous tumors. One month after injection, mice were orally administered vehicle or 500, 1,000, and 1,500 mg/kg of CUR daily × 30 consecutive days. Tumor volume was measured every 3-4 days. At the end of the study, tumor microvasculature was observed under confocal microscope, and immunohistochemical analyses were performed to detect CD31, VEGF, COX-2, and EGFR. CUR at the doses of 1,000 and 1,500 mg/kg showed significant tumor growth retardation (21.03% and 35.57%) versus CaSki + vehicle group. The microvascular density (MVD) in CaSki + vehicle group was significantly increased versus Control + vehicle group and significantly reduced by CUR (1,000 and 1,500 mg/kg). VEGF, COX-2, and EGFR expressions were upregulated in CaSki + vehicle group and attenuated significantly by CUR (1,000 and 1,500 mg/kg). In conclusion, high dose CUR inhibited tumor growth and angiogenesis in CaSki-implanted mice probably mediated by the downregulation of VEGF, COX-2 and EGFR. CUR may have a role in treating human cervical cancer and should be explored further. Pornphrom Yoysungnoen-Chintana, Parvapan Bhattarakosol, and Suthiluk Patumraj Copyright © 2014 Pornphrom Yoysungnoen-Chintana et al. All rights reserved. Combined Cytogenotoxic Effects of Bee Venom and Bleomycin on Rat Lymphocytes: An In Vitro Study Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:15:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/173903/ This study was carried out to determine the cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of bee venom (BV) and/or the chemotherapeutic agent bleomycin (BLM) on healthy isolated rat lymphocytes utilizing morphometric and molecular techniques. Using the Ficoll-Histopaque density gradient centrifugation technique, lymphocytes were isolated, divided into groups, and subjected to BV and/or BLM at incubation medium concentrations of 10 or 20 μg/mL respectively for 24 and 72 hrs. An MTT assay and fluorescent microscopy examinations were used to assess the cytotoxic effects. To determine the predominant type of BV and/or BLM-induced cell death, LDH release assay was employed beside quantitative expression analyses of the apoptosis-related genes (Caspase-3 and Bcl-2). The genotoxic effects of the tested compounds were evaluated via DNA fragmentation assay. The results of these assays demonstrated that BV potentiates BLM-induced cytotoxicity through increased LDH release and diminished cell viability. Nevertheless, BV significantly inhibited the BLM-induced DNA damage. The results verify that BV significantly attenuates the genotoxic effects of BLM on noncancerous isolated rat lymphocytes but does not diminish BLM cytotoxicity. Yasmina M. Abd-Elhakim, Samah R. Khalil, Ashraf Awad, and Laila Y. AL-Ayadhi Copyright © 2014 Yasmina M. Abd-Elhakim et al. All rights reserved. Bimodal Imaging Probes for Combined PET and OI: Recent Developments and Future Directions for Hybrid Agent Development Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:13:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/153741/ Molecular imaging—and especially positron emission tomography (PET)—has gained increasing importance for diagnosis of various diseases and thus experiences an increasing dissemination. Therefore, there is also a growing demand for highly affine PET tracers specifically accumulating and visualizing target structures in the human body. Beyond the development of agents suitable for PET alone, recent tendencies aim at the synthesis of bimodal imaging probes applicable in PET as well as optical imaging (OI), as this combination of modalities can provide clinical advantages. PET, due to the high tissue penetration of the -radiation emitted by PET nuclides, allows a quantitative imaging able to identify and visualize tumors and metastases in the whole body. OI on the contrary visualizes photons exhibiting only a limited tissue penetration but enables the identification of tumor margins and infected lymph nodes during surgery without bearing a radiation burden for the surgeon. Thus, there is an emerging interest in bimodal agents for PET and OI in order to exploit the potential of both imaging techniques for the imaging and treatment of tumor diseases. This short review summarizes the available hybrid probes developed for dual PET and OI and discusses future directions for hybrid agent development. Uwe Seibold, Björn Wängler, Ralf Schirrmacher, and Carmen Wängler Copyright © 2014 Uwe Seibold et al. All rights reserved. Lactose Malabsorption Testing in Daily Clinical Practice: A Critical Retrospective Analysis and Comparison of the Hydrogen/Methane Breath Test and Genetic Test ( Polymorphism) Results Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:10:07 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/grp/2014/464382/ The aim of this study was to establish a retrospective evaluation and comparison of the hydrogen/methane (H2/CH4) breath test and genetic test (C/T−13910 polymorphism) results in lactose malabsorption testing. In total 263 consecutive patients with suspected lactose malabsorption were included in this study. They underwent the H2/CH4 breath test following the ingestion of 50 g lactose and were tested for the C/T−13910 polymorphism. In total 51 patients (19.4%) had a C/C−13910 genotype, indicating primary lactose malabsorption. Only 19 patients (7.2%) also had a positive H2/CH4 breath test. All in all 136 patients (51.69%) had a C/T−13910 and 76 patients (28.91%) a T/T−13910 genotype, indicating lactase persistence. Four patients (1.5%) with the C/T−13910 genotype and one patient (0.4%) with the T/T−13910 genotype had a positive H2/CH4 breath test result, indicating secondary lactose malabsorption. Cohen's Kappa measuring agreement between the two methods was 0.44. Twenty patients (7.6%) with a positive H2/CH4 peak within 60 minutes after lactose ingestion were classified as patients with lactose-dependent small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). In conclusion, only moderate agreement between the breath test and the genetic test was shown. Secondary lactose malabsorption as well as preanalytical limitations of the combined H2/CH4 breath test procedure can cause discrepant results. This trial is registered with K-42-13. Dietmar Enko, Erwin Rezanka, Robert Stolba, and Gabriele Halwachs-Baumann Copyright © 2014 Dietmar Enko et al. All rights reserved. Simulation of Electron Energy Spectra of a Biased Paracentric Hemispherical Deflection Analyzer as a Function of Entry Bias: Effects of Misalignments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:05:16 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jspec/2014/152647/ The performance of a biased paracentric hemispherical deflection analyzer (HDA), including fringing fields and their effect on focusing and energy resolution, is investigated using numerical methods. Electron energy spectra are calculated for three entry positions  mm, 100 mm, and 112 mm and compared with the recent experimental measurements. In both experiment and calculation, the two different paracentric entry positions  mm and  mm, on either side of the mean radius of 100 mm, are found to have a base energy resolution of about two times better than the conventional centric entry position  mm. In order to explain the discrepancies (6–30%) between the simulated and the experimental resolutions the focusing characteristics are further investigated for different displacements of the input lens () with respect to the entry position and the tilted input beam axis by in the dispersive direction. We have found that the blame does not in fact lie with the theory and we have shown that the input lens may have been misaligned in the experiment. Slight misalignments affect both the true energy resolution measurement and the transmission of the beam. O. Sise Copyright © 2014 O. Sise. All rights reserved. Spontaneous Superficial Femoral Artery Pseudoaneurysm in Behcet's Disease Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:02:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/crim/2014/860243/ Behcet’s disease is an autoimmune multisystemic disorder on vasculitis base. Cardiovascular involvement is the most important predictor of morbidity and mortality. The treatment should be planned carefully for pathologies requiring interventions. In our report, we present a 45-year-old patient with spontaneous superficial femoral artery pseudoaneurysm, our treatment strategy, and circumstances we faced. Murat Ugurlucan, Selin Sendil, Omer Ali Sayin, Mehmet Barburoglu, Emre Gok, Gulsum Turkyilmaz, Murat Basaran, Ufuk Alpagut, and Enver Dayioglu Copyright © 2014 Murat Ugurlucan et al. All rights reserved. The Role of TPA I/D and PAI-1 4G/5G Polymorphisms in Multiple Sclerosis Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:58:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/dm/2014/362708/ Background. Previous studies have shown impaired fibrinolysis in multiple sclerosis (MS) and implicated extracellular proteolytic enzymes as important factors in demyelinating neuroinflammatory disorders. Tissue-type plasminogen activator (t-PA) and its inhibitor (PAI-1) are key molecules in both fibrinolysis and extracellular proteolysis. In the present study, an association of the TPA Alu I/D and PAI-1 4G/5G polymorphisms with MS was analyzed within the Genomic Network for Multiple Sclerosis (GENoMS). Methods. The GENoMS includes four populations (Croatian, Slovenian, Serbian, and Bosnian and Herzegovinian) sharing the same geographic location and a similar ethnic background. A total of 885 patients and 656 ethnically matched healthy blood donors with no history of MS in their families were genotyped using PCR-RFLP. Results. TPA DD homozygosity was protective (OR = 0.79, 95% CI 0.63–0.99, ) and PAI 5G5G was a risk factor for MS (OR = 1.30, 95% CI 1.01–1.66, ). A significant effect of the genotype/carrier combination was detected in 5G5G/I carriers (OR = 1.39 95% CI 1.06–1.82, ). Conclusions. We found a significantly harmful effect of the combination of the PAI-1 5G/5G genotype and TPA I allele on MS susceptibility, which indicates the importance of gene-gene interactions in complex diseases such as MS. Maja Živković, Nada Starčević Čizmarević, Luca Lovrečić, Inge Klupka-Sarić, Aleksandra Stanković, Iva Gašparović, Polona Lavtar, Evica Dinčić, Ljiljana Stojković, Gorazd Rudolf, Saša Šega Jazbec, Olivio Perković, Osman Sinanović, Juraj Sepčić, Miljenko Kapović, Borut Peterlin, and Smiljana Ristić Copyright © 2014 Maja Živković et al. All rights reserved. Allocating Tradable Emissions Permits Based on the Proportional Allocation Concept to Achieve a Low-Carbon Economy Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:53:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/462705/ A key issue within the emissions trading system is how tradable emissions permits (TEPs) are initially allocated among a set of entities. This study proposes an approach based on the proportional allocation concept to allocate TEPs among a set of decision making units (DMUs). We firstly deduce a TEP allocation set based on the rule that the TEPs allocated to DMUs should be proportional to their environmental contribution. We then obtain the allocation intervals of DMUs from the set, expressing the allocation as the convex combination between the upper and the lower bound. Finally, we define the satisfaction degree as the coefficient of the convex combination, and propose an algorithm based on the max-min fairness of satisfaction degrees to obtain a unique TEP allocation plan. To illustrate our approach, we provide the example of how TEPs are allocated among 30 provincial administrative regions in China. Our findings indicate that our allocation method can be helpful for achieving a saving in energy consumption and reducing emissions. In addition, from the data envelopment analysis perspective, the TEP allocation set can ensure that both each individual DMU and the organization as a whole become efficient under a common set of variable weights. Qianzhi Dai, Yongjun Li, Qiwei Xie, and Liang Liang Copyright © 2014 Qianzhi Dai et al. All rights reserved. Initial Coefficient Bounds for a General Class of Biunivalent Functions Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:53:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijanal/2014/867871/ We find estimates on the coefficients and for functions in the function class . The results presented in this paper improve or generalize the recent work of Srutha Keerthi and Raja (2013). Şahsene Altınkaya and Sibel Yalçın Copyright © 2014 Şahsene Altınkaya and Sibel Yalçın. All rights reserved. Investigation of Anti-Toxocara and Anti-Toxoplasma Antibodies in Patients with Schizophrenia Disorder Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:52:03 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/schizort/2014/230349/ Objective. The aim of the present study was to examine the relationship between Toxoplasma gondii and Toxocara spp. infections in patients with schizophrenia disorder. Method. A total of 100 patients with schizophrenia disorder and 95 healthy individuals participated in the study. Participants were tested for the presence of anti-T. gondii and anti-Toxocara spp. antibodies by ELISA and Western blotting. Data were analyzed using Chi-square test and Fisher9s exact test. Results. There were no differences in T. gondii IgG seroprevalence between patients with schizophrenia and healthy individuals (), but there were differences in seroprevalence between males and females with schizophrenia (). In contrast, Toxocara spp. IgG seroprevalence was greater in patients with schizophrenia disorder than in healthy individuals (), but there were no differences in seroprevalence between men and women with schizophrenia (). Finally, there were no differences in seroprevalence of T. gondii or Toxocara spp. IgG among different subtypes of schizophrenia, various age groups, residential area, or clinical course of treatment (). Conclusion. The present study suggests that patients with schizophrenia disorder are at elevated risk of Toxocara spp. infection. Moreover, contamination with T. gondii is a risk factor for schizophrenia in women. Shahram Khademvatan, Niloufar Khajeddin, Sakineh Izadi, and Elham Yousefi Copyright © 2014 Shahram Khademvatan et al. All rights reserved. Portfolio Selection with Subsistence Consumption Constraints and CARA Utility Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:51:34 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/153793/ We consider the optimal consumption and portfolio choice problem with constant absolute risk aversion (CARA) utility and a subsistence consumption constraint. A subsistence consumption constraint means there exists a positive constant minimum level for the agent’s optimal consumption. We use the dynamic programming approach to solve the optimization problem and also give the verification theorem. We illustrate the effects of the subsistence consumption constraint on the optimal consumption and portfolio choice rules by the numerical results. Gyoocheol Shim and Yong Hyun Shin Copyright © 2014 Gyoocheol Shim and Yong Hyun Shin. All rights reserved. The Pressure Drop Model of Liquid Flow with Wall Mass Transfer in Horizontal Wellbore with Perforated Completion Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:50:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/196729/ The fluids in horizontal wells can exhibit complicated flow behaviors with wall mass transfer, partly due to the interaction between the main flow and the radial influx along the wellbore and the completion parameters used. This paper presents a novel regression model established based on the experiment data retrieved from the available literatures to determine the apparent friction factor for a single phase wellbore flow. The proposed model has the potential to be readily applicable to different perforation parameters, such as shot phasing and shot density. Compared with other models in the same practical example which is offered by Ouyang et al., the model of this paper to calculate the wellbore pressure is applicable and reasonable. This new model can be easily incorporated into reservoir simulators or analytical reservoir and horizontal wellbore inflow coupling models. Ping Yue, Zhimin Du, Xiaofan Chen, and Chao Tang Copyright © 2014 Ping Yue et al. All rights reserved. Present and Possible Therapies for Age-Related Macular Degeneration Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:45:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/isrn.ophthalmology/2014/608390/ Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of blindness in the elderly population worldwide and is defined as a chronic, progressive disorder characterized by changes occurring within the macula reflective of the ageing process. At present, the prevalence of AMD is currently rising and is estimated to increase by a third by 2020. Although our understanding of the several components underpinning the pathogenesis of this condition has increased significantly, the treatment options for this condition remain substantially limited. In this review, we outline the existing arsenal of therapies available for AMD and discuss the additional role of further novel therapies currently under investigation for this debilitating disease. Muhammad Khan, Ketan Agarwal, Mohamed Loutfi, and Ahmed Kamal Copyright © 2014 Muhammad Khan et al. All rights reserved. New Directions in Direct Dark Matter Searches Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:45:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ahep/2014/681312/ I present the status of direct dark matter detection with specific attention to the experimental results and their phenomenological interpretation in terms of dark matter interactions. In particular I review a new and more general approach to study signals in this field based on nonrelativistic operators which parametrize more efficiently the dark matter-nucleus interactions in terms of a very limited number of relevant degrees of freedom. Then I list the major experimental results, pointing out the main uncertainties that affect the theoretical interpretation of the data. Finally, since the underlying theory that describes both the dark matter and the standard model fields is unknown, I address the uncertainties coming from the nature of the interaction. In particular, the phenomenology of a class of models in which the interaction between dark matter particles and target nuclei is of a long range type is discussed. Paolo Panci Copyright © 2014 Paolo Panci. All rights reserved. Copper(II) Complexes of 2-(Methylthiomethyl)anilines: Spectral and Structural Properties and In Vitro Antimicrobial Activity Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:30:05 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jic/2014/769573/ Copper(II) complexes of 2-(methylthiomethyl)anilines (1a–1f) have been obtained and characterized by elemental analyses, IR, electronic spectra, conductivity, and X-ray crystallography. The complexes (2a–2f) have the structural formula [CuCl2L] with the bidentate ligand coordinating through sulfur and nitrogen. The single crystal X-ray diffraction data reveal that the copper complex (2f) has a tetragonally distorted octahedral structure with long Cu–Cl equatorial bonds. Magnetic susceptibility measurements indicate the availability of one unpaired electron in the complexes and the conductivity measurements in DMF show their behaviour as nonelectrolytes. The solid reflectance spectra and the electronic spectra of the complexes in DMSO were determined. The ligands and their copper complexes were screened for in vitro antimicrobial activity against S. aureus, B. subtilis, E. coli, and C. albicans. The methoxysubstituted complex (2c) showed more promising antibacterial activity against S. aureus and B. subtilis than other compounds at the concentration tested. Temitope E. Olalekan, Denzil R. Beukes, Bernardus Van Brecht, and Gareth M. Watkins Copyright © 2014 Temitope E. Olalekan et al. All rights reserved. Preparation and Sintering Effect in Quartz-Barium Titanate Porous Ceramics and Permeability Modulation Using an Implanted Electrode Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:10:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/amse/2014/721245/ Barium titanate and quartz mixed in different proportions were used to create porous piezoelectric ceramics. Three different sintering temperatures were used for the ceramics preparation; a nichrome wire was used as internal electrode in porous ceramics. Characteristics as porous area, porosity, and its relationship with quartz percentage and sintering temperatures were studied. Porous ceramics with an implanted electrode were created, by applying an alternating voltage in the internal electrode that controlled the liquid permeability coefficient, calculated by the Darcy Law. Ernesto Suaste Gómez, José de Jesús Agustín Flores Cuautle, and Omar Terán Jiménez Copyright © 2014 Ernesto Suaste Gómez et al. All rights reserved. A Mathematical Model for the Transmission and Spread of Drug Sensitive and Resistant Malaria Strains within a Human Population Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:02:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/isrn.biomathematics/2014/636973/ Malaria remains by far the world's most important tropical disease, killing more people than any other communicable disease. A number of preventive and control measures have been put in place and most importantly drug treatment. The emergence of drug resistance against the most common and affordable antimalarials is widespread and poses a key obstacle to malaria control. A mathematical model that incorporates evolution of drug resistance and treatment as a preventive strategy is formulated and analyzed. The qualitative analysis of the model is given in terms of the effective reproduction number, . The existence and stability of the disease-free and endemic equilibria of the model are studied. We establish the threshold parameters below which the burden due to malaria can be brought under control. Numerical simulations are done to determine the role played by key parameters in the model. The public health implications of the results are twofold; firstly every effort should be taken to minimize the evolution of drug resistance due to treatment failure and secondly high levels of treatment and development of immunity are essential in reducing the malaria burden. Julius Tumwiine, Senelani D. Hove-Musekwa, and Farai Nyabadza Copyright © 2014 Julius Tumwiine et al. All rights reserved. Decaying Dark Atom Constituents and Cosmic Positron Excess Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:00:35 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ahep/2014/214258/ We present a scenario where dark matter is in the form of dark atoms that can accommodate the experimentally observed excess of positrons in PAMELA and AMS-02 while being compatible with the constraints imposed on the gamma-ray ux from Fermi/LAT. This scenario assumes that the dominant component of dark matter is in the form of a bound state between a helium nucleus and a particle and a small component is in the form of a WIMP-like dark atom compatible with direct searches in underground detectors. One of the constituents of this WIMP-like state is a metastable particle with a mass of 1 TeV or slightly below that by decaying to , and produces the observed positron excess. These decays can naturally take place via GUT interactions. If it exists, such a metastable particle can be found in the next run of LHC. The model predicts also the ratio of leptons over baryons in the universe to be close to . K. Belotsky, M. Khlopov, C. Kouvaris, and M. Laletin Copyright © 2014 K. Belotsky et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Centella asiatica on Oxidative Stress and Lipid Metabolism in Hyperlipidemic Animal Models Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:59:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/omcl/2014/154295/ Hyperlipidemia and many other metabolic diseases are related to oxidative stress. Centella asiatica is a traditional Chinese medicine whose antioxidant effect in vitro has been reported. We are interested in whether it possesses this effect in vivo and hence modulates lipid metabolism. Therefore, experiments were carried out on mice and golden hamsters regarding its antioxidant and hypolipidemic effect. We observed that a fraction (CAF3) of the ethanol extract (CAE) of Centella asiatica had a cholesterol decrease of 79% and a triglyceride decrease of 95% in acute mice model, so CAF3 was further investigated in high-fat-fed hamster model. It was shown that CAF3 increased SOD and GSH-Px activities and decreased MDA level, and it also improved TC, TG, LDL-C, HDL-C, AST, and ALT levels. L-CAT and SR-BI gene expression in hamsters were increased. Taken together, our data suggest that the CAF3 fraction of Centella asiatica has antioxidant and hypolipidemic properties. Yun Zhao, Ping Shu, Youzhi Zhang, Limin Lin, Haihong Zhou, Zhentian Xu, Daqin Suo, Anzhi Xie, and Xin Jin Copyright © 2014 Yun Zhao et al. All rights reserved. Stability Analysis of a Population Model with Maturation Delay and Ricker Birth Function Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:59:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/136707/ A single species population model is investigated, where the discrete maturation delay and the Ricker birth function are incorporated. The threshold determining the global stability of the trivial equilibrium and the existence of the positive equilibrium is obtained. The necessary and sufficient conditions ensuring the local asymptotical stability of the positive equilibrium are given by applying the Pontryagin's method. The effect of all the parameter values on the local stability of the positive equilibrium is analyzed. The obtained results show the existence of stability switch and provide a method of computing maturation times at which the stability switch occurs. Numerical simulations illustrate that chaos may occur for the model, and the associated parameter bifurcation diagrams are given for certain values of the parameters. Chongwu Zheng, Fengqin Zhang, and Jianquan Li Copyright © 2014 Chongwu Zheng et al. All rights reserved. New Regression Models for Predicting Noise Exposure in the Driver’s Compartment of Malaysian Army Three-Tonne Trucks Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:28:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/616093/ The objective of this study is to present a new method for determination of noise exposure in the driver’s compartment of Malaysian Army (MA) three-tonne trucks based on changing vehicle speed using regression models and the statistical analysis method known as Integrated Kurtosis-based Algorithm for -notch filter (I-kaz). The test was conducted on two different road conditions: tarmac and dirt roads. Noise exposure was measured using a sound level meter which is capable of recording raw sound pressure in Pa, and comparisons were made between the two types of roads. The prediction of noise exposure was done using the developed regression models and 3D graphic representations of the I-kaz coefficient . The results of the regression models show that increases when vehicle speed and noise exposure increase. For model validation, predicted and measured noise exposures were compared, and a relatively good agreement has been obtained between them. It was found that the predictions had high accuracies and low average relative errors. By using the regression models, we can easily predict noise exposure inside the truck driver’s compartment. The proposed models are efficient and can be extended to the automotive industry for noise exposure monitoring. Shamsul Akmar Ab Aziz, Mohd Zaki Nuawi, Mohd Jailani Mohd Nor, and Dian Darina Indah Daruis Copyright © 2014 Shamsul Akmar Ab Aziz et al. All rights reserved. Experimental Realization of a Multiscroll Chaotic Oscillator with Optimal Maximum Lyapunov Exponent Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:28:03 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/303614/ Nowadays, different kinds of experimental realizations of chaotic oscillators have been already presented in the literature. However, those realizations do not consider the value of the maximum Lyapunov exponent, which gives a quantitative measure of the grade of unpredictability of chaotic systems. That way, this paper shows the experimental realization of an optimized multiscroll chaotic oscillator based on saturated function series. First, from the mathematical description having four coefficients (a, b, c, d1), an optimization evolutionary algorithm varies them to maximize the value of the positive Lyapunov exponent. Second, a realization of those optimized coefficients using operational amplifiers is given. Herein a, b, c, d1 are implemented with precision potentiometers to tune up to four decimals of the coefficients having the range between 0.0001 and 1.0000. Finally, experimental results of the phase-space portraits for generating from 2 to 10 scrolls are listed to show that their associated value for the optimal maximum Lyapunov exponent increases by increasing the number of scrolls, thus guaranteeing a more complex chaotic behavior. Esteban Tlelo-Cuautle, Ana Dalia Pano-Azucena, Victor Hugo Carbajal-Gomez, and Mauro Sanchez-Sanchez Copyright © 2014 Esteban Tlelo-Cuautle et al. All rights reserved. A Network Map of FGF-1/FGFR Signaling System Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:15:12 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jst/2014/962962/ Fibroblast growth factor-1 (FGF-1) is a well characterized growth factor among the 22 members of the FGF superfamily in humans. It binds to all the four known FGF receptors and regulates a plethora of functions including cell growth, proliferation, migration, differentiation, and survival in different cell types. FGF-1 is involved in the regulation of diverse physiological processes such as development, angiogenesis, wound healing, adipogenesis, and neurogenesis. Deregulation of FGF-1 signaling is not only implicated in tumorigenesis but also is associated with tumor invasion and metastasis. Given the biomedical significance of FGFs and the fact that individual FGFs have different roles in diverse physiological processes, the analysis of signaling pathways induced by the binding of specific FGFs to their cognate receptors demands more focused efforts. Currently, there are no resources in the public domain that facilitate the analysis of signaling pathways induced by individual FGFs in the FGF/FGFR signaling system. Towards this, we have developed a resource of signaling reactions triggered by FGF-1/FGFR system in various cell types/tissues. The pathway data and the reaction map are made available for download in different community standard data exchange formats through NetPath and NetSlim signaling pathway resources. Rajesh Raju, Shyam Mohan Palapetta, Varot K. Sandhya, Apeksha Sahu, Abbas Alipoor, Lavanya Balakrishnan, Jayshree Advani, Bijesh George, K. Ramachandra Kini, N. P. Geetha, H. S. Prakash, T. S. Keshava Prasad, Yu-Jung Chang, Linyi Chen, Akhilesh Pandey, and Harsha Gowda Copyright © 2014 Rajesh Raju et al. All rights reserved. Study on Telescope Gain Affected by a Multilevel Hybrid Mechanism in FAST Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:11:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/841526/ This paper focuses on the telescope gain affected by a multilevel hybrid mechanism for the feed positioning in the five-hundred-meter aperture spherical radio telescope (FAST) project, which is based on the positioning accuracy analysis of the mechanism. First, error model for the whole mechanism is established and its physical meaning is clearly explained. Then two kinds of error sources are mainly considered: geometric errors and structural deformations. The positioning error over the mechanism’s workspace is described by an efficient and intuitive approach. As the feed position error will lower the telescope gain, this influence is analyzed in detail. In the end, it is concluded that the design of the mechanism can meet the requirement of the telescope performance. Xiaoming Chai, Jin Fan, Lanchuan Zhou, and Bo Peng Copyright © 2014 Xiaoming Chai et al. All rights reserved. Research on Grading Detection of the Wheat Seeds Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:10:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/702906/ Evaluating the merits of the wheat seed is an important significance for wheat breeding. We studied analytic hierarchy process (AHP) for seeds grading by digital image processing techniques in the paper. Firstly, preprocess the collected wheat seed images; extract some parameters, such as area, plumpness, rectangular, and elongation of the seed, and then build the level model. Experiments showed the model is right, and level accuracy rate is more than 95%. Xian-Zhong Han, Ke-Jian Wang, Yingchun Yuan, Chen Chen, and Liang Liang Copyright © 2014 Xian-Zhong Han et al. All rights reserved. Cationic Bioactive Peptide from the Seeds of Benincasa hispida Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:07:35 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpep/2014/156060/ A designated bioactive peptide “Hispidalin” purified from the seeds of Benincasa hispida, which is a medicinal plant, belongs to Cucurbitaceae family. Purification was achieved by using a procedure consisting of extraction from potassium phosphate buffer followed by FPLC and HPLC steps. Based on amino acid residue, this peptide is amphipathic and basic with one net positive charge having isoelectric pH 8.1. This peptide is without sulphur containing amino acid suggesting its extended conformation lacking double bond secondary structure. The results obtained from MALDI-TOF suggested that Hispidalin is of molecular mass 5.7 KDa with 49 amino acid residues and confirmed SDS-PAGE resolved ∼6.0 KDa protein band. This novel and unknown peptide “Hispidalin” showed broad and potent inhibitory effects against various human bacterial and fungal pathogens; its growth inhibition was significantly comparable with commercial antibacterial and antifungal drugs. The Hispidalin at 40 μg/mL concentration exhibited 70.8% DPPH free radical-scavenging activity and 69.5% lipid peroxide inhibition. Thus, in the present study, Hispidalin demonstrated remarkable antimicrobial and antioxidant potentials from the seeds of B. hispida. Sunayana Sharma, Hirday Narain Verma, and Nilesh Kumar Sharma Copyright © 2014 Sunayana Sharma et al. All rights reserved. Mathematical Analysis of a Series of 4-Acetylamino-2-(3,5-dimethylpyrazol-1-yl)-6-pyridylpyrimidines: A Simple Way to Relate Quantum Similarity to Local Chemical Reactivity Using the Gaussian Orbitals Localized Theory Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:04:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jtc/2014/624891/ Molecular Quantum Similarity (MQS) descriptors and Density Functional Theory (DFT) based reactivity descriptors were studied for a series of 4-Acetylamino-2-(3,5-dimethylpyrazol-1-yl)-6-pyridylpyrimidines compounds used for Parkinson’s disease (PD) treatment. The quantification of the steric and electronic effects was shown through scales of quantitative convergence; such scales allow us to establish a methodology to quantify the similarity from the local chemical reactivity (Fukui Functions) point of view. This procedure provides new considerations in the local reactivity of the Adenosine receptor antagonists in a disease of difficult control as PD. In addition, we present new considerations to the localized bonding theory and show a new methodology for quantum similarity on the Fukui Functions. Considering that the Fukui functions under a condensation scheme may have ambiguities in the (DFT) context. Alejandro Morales-Bayuelo, Verónica Valdiris, and Ricardo Vivas-Reyes Copyright © 2014 Alejandro Morales-Bayuelo et al. All rights reserved. Investigation of a New Flux-Modulated Permanent Magnet Brushless Motor for EVs Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:04:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/540797/ This paper presents a flux-modulated direct drive (FMDD) motor. The key is to integrate the magnetic gear with the PM motor while removing the gear inner-rotor. Hence, the proposed FMDD motor can achieve the low-speed high-torque output and high-speed compact design requirements as well as high-torque density with a simple structure. The output power equation is analytically derived. By using finite element analysis (FEA), the static characteristics of the proposed motor are obtained. Based on these characteristics, the system mathematical model can be established. Hence, the evaluation of system performances is conducted by computer simulation using the Matlab/Simulink. A prototype is designed and built for experimentation. Experimental results are given to verify the theoretical analysis and simulation. Ying Fan, Lingling Gu, Yong Luo, Xuedong Han, and Ming Cheng Copyright © 2014 Ying Fan et al. All rights reserved. Vertical Velocity Distribution in Open-Channel Flow with Rigid Vegetation Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:03:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/146829/ In order to experimentally investigate the effects of rigid vegetation on the characteristics of flow, the vegetations were modeled by rigid cylindrical rod. Flow field is measured under the conditions of submerged rigid rod in flume with single layer and double layer vegetations. Experiments were performed for various spacings of the rigid rods. The vegetation models were aligned with the approaching flow in a rectangular channel. Vertical distributions of time-averaged velocity at various streamwise distances were evaluated using an acoustic Doppler velocimeter (ADV). The results indicate that, in submerged conditions, it is difficult to described velocity distribution along the entire depth using unified function. The characteristic of vertical distribution of longitudinal velocity is the presence of inflection. Under the inflection, the line is convex and groove above inflection. The interaction of high and low momentum fluids causes the flow to fold and creates strong vortices within each mixing layer. Understanding the flow phenomena in the area surrounding the tall vegetation, especially in the downstream region, is very important when modeling or studying the riparian environment. ADV measures of rigid vegetation distribution of the flow velocity field can give people a new understanding. Changjun Zhu, Wenlong Hao, and Xiangping Chang Copyright © 2014 Changjun Zhu et al. All rights reserved. Strongly Secure Certificateless Signature Scheme Supporting Batch Verification Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:47:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/854135/ We propose a strongly secure certificateless signature scheme supporting batch verification, which makes it possible for a verifier to verify a set of signatures more efficiently than verifying them one by one. In an identity-based digital signature scheme, private key generator (PKG) knows each user's signing key, so it can generate a signature which is indistinguishable from the signature generated by the user. This is a serious problem because the property of signature nonrepudiation will not be achieved. In our proposed scheme, it is impossible for PKG to produce a signature which is indistinguishable from any signature produced by a user. Compared with existing signature schemes with batch verification, although our proposed scheme is not the most efficient one, it achieves Girault's level-3 security, while the others have Girault's level-1 or level-2 security only. We also formally prove that the proposed scheme is unforgeable and satisfies Girault's level-3 security based on hard problems. Chun-I Fan, Pei-Hsiu Ho, and Yi-Feng Tseng Copyright © 2014 Chun-I Fan et al. All rights reserved. Spatial Analysis on Future Housing Markets: Economic Development and Housing Implications Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:47:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/838021/ A coupled projection method combining formal modelling and other statistical techniques was developed to delineate the relationship between economic and social drivers for net new housing allocations. Using the example of employment growth in Tyne and Wear, UK, until 2016, the empirical analysis yields housing projections at the macro- and microspatial levels (e.g., region to subregion to elected ward levels). The results have important implications for the strategic planning of locations for housing and employment, demonstrating both intuitively and quantitatively how local economic developments affect housing demand. Xin Liu and Lizhe Wang Copyright © 2014 Xin Liu and Lizhe Wang. All rights reserved. Spike Sorting by Joint Probabilistic Modeling of Neural Spike Trains and Waveforms Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:45:30 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cin/2014/643059/ This paper details a novel probabilistic method for automatic neural spike sorting which uses stochastic point process models of neural spike trains and parameterized action potential waveforms. A novel likelihood model for observed firing times as the aggregation of hidden neural spike trains is derived, as well as an iterative procedure for clustering the data and finding the parameters that maximize the likelihood. The method is executed and evaluated on both a fully labeled semiartificial dataset and a partially labeled real dataset of extracellular electric traces from rat hippocampus. In conditions of relatively high difficulty (i.e., with additive noise and with similar action potential waveform shapes for distinct neurons) the method achieves significant improvements in clustering performance over a baseline waveform-only Gaussian mixture model (GMM) clustering on the semiartificial set (1.98% reduction in error rate) and outperforms both the GMM and a state-of-the-art method on the real dataset (5.04% reduction in false positive + false negative errors). Finally, an empirical study of two free parameters for our method is performed on the semiartificial dataset. Brett A. Matthews and Mark A. Clements Copyright © 2014 Brett A. Matthews and Mark A. Clements. All rights reserved. Performance Study of CdS/Co-Doped-CdSe Quantum Dot Sensitized Solar Cells Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:39:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2014/818160/ In order to optimize the charge transfer path in quantum dot sensitized solar cells (QDSCs), we employed successive ionic layer adsorption and reaction method to dope CdSe with Co for fabricating CdS/Co-doped-CdSe QDSCs constructed with CdS/Co-doped-CdSe deposited on mesoscopic TiO2 film as photoanode, Pt counter electrode, and sulfide/polysulfide electrolyte. After Co doping, the bandgap of CdSe quantum dot decreases, and the conduction band and valence band all improve, forming a cascade energy level which is more conducive to charge transport inside the solar cell and reducing the recombination of electron-hole thus improving the photocurrent and ultimately improving the power conversion efficiency. This work has not been found in the literature. Xiaoping Zou, Sheng He, Gongqing Teng, and Chuan Zhao Copyright © 2014 Xiaoping Zou et al. All rights reserved. Ethnobotanical, Phytochemical, Pharmacological, and Toxicological Aspects of Persicaria hydropiper (L.) Delarbre Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:38:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/782830/ Persicaria hydropiper (L.) Delarbre, belonging to Polygonaceae family, is a common weed found in most of the temperate countries including Bangladesh, China, Malaysia, and Japan. The plant is also referred to as “marsh pepper” or “smart weed.” It appears to be a useful herb with evidence-based medicinal properties. The present work addresses the botanical description, traditional uses, phytochemistry, pharmacology, and toxicology of P. hydropiper. All plant parts have been commonly used in the traditional systems of medicines. Flavonoids are the major group of phytochemical components followed by drimane-type sesquiterpenes and sesquiterpenoids, as well as phenylpropanoids. Different extracts and plant parts showed remarkable pharmacological activities including antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, antihelminth, antifeedant, cytotoxicity, anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, oestrogenicity, antifertility, antiadipogenicity, and neuroprotection. Mutagenicity and acute and subchronic toxicities of the plant were also reported. P. hydropiper has tremendous medicinal properties that could further be investigated for the development of evidence-based herbal products. A. K. M. Moyeenul Huq, Jamia Azdina Jamal, and Johnson Stanslas Copyright © 2014 A. K. M. Moyeenul Huq et al. All rights reserved. Prevalence and Drug Resistance Patterns of Mycobacterium tuberculosis among New Smear Positive Pulmonary Tuberculosis Patients in Eastern Ethiopia Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:36:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/trt/2014/753492/ The study aimed at determining the prevalence and drug resistance patterns of Mycobacterium tuberculosis among new smear positive pulmonary tuberculosis patients visiting TB diagnosis and treatment facilities at selected health facilities in eastern Ethiopia. A cross-sectional study was conducted between October 2011 and May 2013. A total of 408 new adult pulmonary TB patients (≥ 18 years) were enrolled in this study. Three consecutive sputum samples (spot, morning, and spot) were collected from each patient and transported to the Armauer Hansen Research Institute TB laboratory located in Addis Ababa for culture on Lowenstein Jensen slant media. DST was performed on 357 (87.5%) of the patient samples for isoniazid (H), rifampicin (R), ethambutol (E), and streptomycin (S) using the standard proportion method. The rate of resistance to any one drug was 23%. Any resistance to H, S, R, and E was 14%, 11.5%, 2.8%, and 0.3%, respectively. The highest proportion of monoresistance was observed against H (9.5%). MDRTB was detected in 1.1% of the patients. Any drug resistance was associated with HIV infection (COR = 3.7, 95% CI 1.905–7.222) (P = 0.000). Although the prevalence of MDRTB is relatively low in the study area, high prevalence of H resistance is a serious concern demanding close monitoring. Expanding diagnostic capacity for mycobacterial culture and DST is a vital step in this regard. Berhanu Seyoum, Meaza Demissie, Alemayehu Worku, Shiferaw Bekele, and Abraham Aseffa Copyright © 2014 Berhanu Seyoum et al. All rights reserved. Bifurcations of Nontwisted Heteroclinic Loop with Resonant Eigenvalues Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:36:17 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/716082/ By using the foundational solutions of the linear variational equation of the unperturbed system along the heteroclinic orbits to establish the local coordinate systems in the small tubular neighborhoods of the heteroclinic orbits, we study the bifurcation problems of nontwisted heteroclinic loop with resonant eigenvalues. The existence, numbers, and existence regions of 1-heteroclinic loop, 1-homoclinic loop, 1-periodic orbit, 2-fold 1-periodic orbit, and two 1-periodic orbits are obtained. Meanwhile, we give the corresponding bifurcation surfaces. Yinlai Jin, Xiaowei Zhu, Zheng Guo, Han Xu, Liqun Zhang, and Benyan Ding Copyright © 2014 Yinlai Jin et al. All rights reserved. Optimization of a Centrifugal Boiler Circulating Pump’s Casing Based on CFD and FEM Analyses Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:35:07 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/532892/ It is important to evaluate the economic efficiency of boiler circulating pumps in manufacturing process from the manufacturers’ point of view. The possibility of optimizing the pump casing with respect to structural pressure integrity and hydraulic performance was discussed. CFD analyses of pump models with different pump casing sizes were firstly carried out for the hydraulic performance evaluation. The effects of the working temperature and the sealing ring on the hydraulic efficiency were discussed. A model with casing diameter of 0.875 was selected for further analyses. FEM analyses were then carried out on different combinations of casing sizes, casing wall thickness, and materials, to evaluate its safety related to pressure integrity, with respect to both static and fatigue strength analyses. Two models with forging and cast materials were selected as final results. Zhigang Zuo, Shuhong Liu, Yizhang Fan, and Yulin Wu Copyright © 2014 Zhigang Zuo et al. All rights reserved. Evaluating the Impact of PSA as a Selection Criteria for Nerve Sparing Radical Prostatectomy in a Screened Cohort Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:34:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/pc/2014/395078/ Purpose. We investigated whether NS-RP increased risk of PSA failure and whether PSA should be included as a selection criterion for NS. Methods. We evaluated 357 consecutive men with screen-detected PC who underwent open RP without adjuvant radiotherapy between 9/11/2001 and 12/30/2008. Criteria for NS included Gleason score ≤3 + 4, percentage of positive biopsies (PPB) ≤50%, percentage of core involvement ≤50%, nonapical location, no perineural invasion, and no palpable disease on pre- or intraoperative exam but did not include a PSA threshold. Cox multivariable regression assessed whether increasing PSA or unilateral- or bilateral-NS versus non-NS-RP was associated with PSA failure adjusting for prognostic factors. Results. After a median follow-up of 3.96 years, 34 men sustained PSA failure (9.5%). Increasing PSA was significantly associated with increased risk of PSA failure in the interaction model (adjusted hazard ratio (AHR): 1.09 [95% CI: 1.03–1.16]; ), whereas unilateral (AHR: 1.24 [95% CI: 0.36–4.34]; ) or bilateral NS (AHR: 0.41 [95% CI: 0.06–2.59]; ) versus non-NS RP was not. Conclusion. NS-RP in a screened cohort did not increase risk of PSA failure using NS criteria not including PSA. Shyam K. Tanguturi, Ming-Hui Chen, Marian Loffredo, Jerome P. Richie, and Anthony V. D’Amico Copyright © 2014 Shyam K. Tanguturi et al. All rights reserved. An Energy Efficient Data Gathering in Dense Mobile Wireless Sensor Networks Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:34:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/isrn.sensor.networks/2014/518268/ Amidst of the growing impact of wireless sensor networks (WSNs) on real world applications, numerous schemes have been proposed for collecting data on multipath routing, tree, clustering, and cluster tree. Effectiveness of WSNs only depends on the data collection schemes. Existing methods cannot provide a guaranteed reliable network about mobility, traffic, and end-to-end connection, respectively. To mitigate such kind of problems, a simple and effective scheme is proposed, which is named as cluster independent data collection tree (CIDT). After the cluster head election and cluster formation, CIDT constructs a data collection tree (DCT) based on the cluster head location. In DCT, data collection node (DCN) does not participate in sensing, which is simply collecting the data packet from the cluster head and delivering it into sink. CIDT minimizes the energy exploitation, end-to-end delay and traffic of cluster head due to transfer of data with DCT. CIDT provides less complexity involved in creating a tree structure, which maintains the energy consumption of cluster head that helps to reduce the frequent cluster formation and maintain a cluster for considerable amount of time. The simulation results show that CIDT provides better QoS in terms of energy consumption, throughput, end-to-end delay, and network lifetime for mobility-based WSNs. R. Velmani and B. Kaarthick Copyright © 2014 R. Velmani and B. Kaarthick. All rights reserved. Infinitely Many Periodic Solutions of Duffing Equations with Singularities via Time Map Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:33:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/398512/ We study the periodic solutions of Duffing equations with singularities . By using Poincaré-Birkhoff twist theorem, we prove that the given equation possesses infinitely many positive periodic solutions provided that satisfies the singular condition and the time map related to autonomous system tends to zero. Tiantian Ma and Zaihong Wang Copyright © 2014 Tiantian Ma and Zaihong Wang. All rights reserved. EEG Eye State Identification Using Incremental Attribute Learning with Time-Series Classification Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:33:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/365101/ Eye state identification is a kind of common time-series classification problem which is also a hot spot in recent research. Electroencephalography (EEG) is widely used in eye state classification to detect human's cognition state. Previous research has validated the feasibility of machine learning and statistical approaches for EEG eye state classification. This paper aims to propose a novel approach for EEG eye state identification using incremental attribute learning (IAL) based on neural networks. IAL is a novel machine learning strategy which gradually imports and trains features one by one. Previous studies have verified that such an approach is applicable for solving a number of pattern recognition problems. However, in these previous works, little research on IAL focused on its application to time-series problems. Therefore, it is still unknown whether IAL can be employed to cope with time-series problems like EEG eye state classification. Experimental results in this study demonstrates that, with proper feature extraction and feature ordering, IAL can not only efficiently cope with time-series classification problems, but also exhibit better classification performance in terms of classification error rates in comparison with conventional and some other approaches. Ting Wang, Sheng-Uei Guan, Ka Lok Man, and T. O. Ting Copyright © 2014 Ting Wang et al. All rights reserved. Bioremediation of Waste Water Containing Hazardous Cadmium Ion with Ion Imprinted Interpenetrating Polymer Networks Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:33:04 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aec/2014/394841/ A novel Cd(II) ion imprinted interpenetrating polymer network (Cd(II)IIP) was prepared by free radical polymerization using alginic acid and NNMBA-crosslinked polyacrylamide in presence of initiator potassium persulphate. Cd(II)IIP showed higher capacity and selectivity than the nonimprinted polymer (NIP). The sorption capacities of Cd(II)IIP and NIP for Cd(II) ions were 0.886 and 0.663 , respectively. Kinetics studies showed that the sorption process closely agreed with a pseudosecond-order model. The thermodynamic data suggest that the sorption is a spontaneous endothermic process. Equilibrium experiments showed very good fit with the Langmuir isotherm equation for the monolayer sorption process. Cd(II)IIP exhibited good reusability, and the sorption capacity of Cd(II)IIP was stable within the first 4 cycles without obvious decrease. Also Cd(II)IIP showed almost 100% removal efficiency for Cd(II) ions in real environmental water samples, indicating that Cd(II)IIP could have wide application prospects in Cd(II) ion removal. Girija Parameswaran and Beena Mathew Copyright © 2014 Girija Parameswaran and Beena Mathew. All rights reserved. Analytical Method Development and Validation of Solifenacin in Pharmaceutical Dosage Forms by RP-HPLC Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:21:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/isrn.analytical.chemistry/2014/132020/ A new, accurate, precise, and robust HPLC method was developed and validated for the determination of solifenacin in tablet dosage form. The chromatographic separation was achieved on an Inertsil ODS 3V C18 (150 mm × 4.6 mm, 5 μm) stationary phase maintained at ambient temperature with a mobile phase combination of monobasic potassium phosphate (pH 3.5) containing 0.1% triethylamine and methanol (gradient mode) at a flow rate of 1.5 mL/min, and the detection was carried out by using UV detector at 220 nm. The performance of the method was validated according to the present ICH guidelines. Rihana Parveen Shaik, Srinivasa Babu Puttagunta, Chandrasekar Kothapalli Bannoth, and Bala Sekhara Reddy Challa Copyright © 2014 Rihana Parveen Shaik et al. All rights reserved. Delay-Dependent Robust Filtering for a Class of Fuzzy Stochastic Systems Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:09:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/673956/ This paper is concerned with the filtering problem for a kind of Takagi-Sugeno (T-S) fuzzy stochastic system with time-varying delay and parameter uncertainties. Parameter uncertainties in the system are assumed to satisfy global Lipschitz conditions. And the attention of this paper is focused on the stochastically mean-square stability of the filtering error system, and the performance level of the output error with the disturbance input. The method designed for the delay-dependent filter is developed based on linear matrix inequalities. Finally, the effectiveness of the proposed method is substantiated with an illustrative example. Ze Li and Xinhao Yang Copyright © 2014 Ze Li and Xinhao Yang. All rights reserved. Multifunctional Roles of Reticular Fibroblastic Cells: More Than Meets the Eye? Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:08:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2014/402038/ Fibroblastic reticular cells (FRCs) are stromal cells found in secondary lymphoid organ. Despite its structural function in the lymph nodes being well established, recent studies indicate that the FRCs also play a key role in immunological processes, associated with cell transit, immune response, and cells activation quality, and contribute to peripheral tolerance. To this end, we focus this review on lymph nodes FRC characterization and discuss functional aspects such as production of cytokines and chemokines and their involvement in the immune response, seeking to establish whether certain subsets have a more functional specialization. H. G. Alvarenga and L. Marti Copyright © 2014 H. G. Alvarenga and L. Marti. All rights reserved. Tuboovarian Abscess as Primary Presentation for Imperforate Hymen Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:07:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/criog/2014/142039/ Objective. Imperforate hymen represents the extreme in the spectrum of hymenal embryological variations. The archetypal presentation in the adolescent patient is that of cyclical abdominopelvic pain in the presence of amenorrhoea. We reported a rare event of imperforate hymen presenting as a cause of tuboovarian abscess (TOA). Case Study. A 14-year-old girl presented to the emergency department complaining of severe left iliac fossa pain. It was her first episode of heavy bleeding per vagina, and she had a history of cyclical pelvic pain. She was clinically unwell, and an external genital examination demonstrated a partially perforated hymen. A transabdominal ultrasound showed grossly dilated serpiginous fallopian tubes. The upper part of the vagina was filled with homogeneous echogenic substance. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) demonstrated complex right adnexa mass with bilateral pyo-haemato-salpinges, haematometra, and haematocolpos. In theatre, the imperforate hymen was opened via cruciate incision and blood was drained from the vagina. At laparoscopy, dense purulent material was evacuated prior to an incision and drainage of the persistent right TOA. Conclusion. Ideally identification of imperforate hymen should occur during neonatal examination to prevent symptomatic presentation. Our case highlights the risks of late recognition resulting in the development of sepsis and TOA. Jeh Wen Ho, D. Angstetra, R. Loong, and T. Fleming Copyright © 2014 Jeh Wen Ho et al. All rights reserved. Application of Combinatorial Interaction Design for DC Servomotor PID Controller Tuning Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:59:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jcse/2014/576868/ Combinatorial optimization has been used in different research areas. It has been employed successfully in software testing fields to construct minimum set of combinations (i.e., in terms of size) which in turn represents the minimum number of test cases. It was also found to be a successful approach that can be applied to solve other similar problems in different fields of research. In line with this approach, this paper presents a new application of the combinational optimization in the design of PID controller for DC servomotor. The design of PID controller involves the determination of three parameters. To find optimal initial PID parameters, different tuning methods have been proposed and designed in the literature. The combinatorial design is concerned with the arrangement of finite set of elements into combinatorial set that satisfies some given constraints. Consequently, the proposed method takes the interaction of the input parameters as a constraint for constructing this combinatorial set. The generated sets are then used in the proposed tuning method. The method proved its effectiveness within a set of experiments in a simulated environment. Mouayad A. Sahib, Bestoun S. Ahmed, and Moayad Y. Potrus Copyright © 2014 Mouayad A. Sahib et al. All rights reserved. Adaptive Failure Identification for Healthcare Risk Analysis and Its Application on E-Healthcare Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:58:15 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jam/2014/865241/ To satisfy the requirement for diverse risk preferences, we propose a generic risk priority number (GRPN) function that assigns a risk weight to each parameter such that they represent individual organization/department/process preferences for the parameters. This research applies GRPN function-based model to differentiate the types of risk, and primary data are generated through simulation. We also conduct sensitivity analysis on correlation and regression to compare it with the traditional RPN (TRPN). The proposed model outperforms the TRPN model and provides a practical, effective, and adaptive method for risk evaluation. In particular, the defined GRPN function offers a new method to prioritize failure modes in failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA). The different risk preferences considered in the healthcare example show that the modified FMEA model can take into account the various risk factors and prioritize failure modes more accurately. In addition, the model also can apply to a generic e-healthcare service environment with a hierarchical architecture. Kuo-Chung Chu and Lun-Ping Hung Copyright © 2014 Kuo-Chung Chu and Lun-Ping Hung. All rights reserved. Adalimumab Treatment in Biologically Naïve Crohn’s Disease: Relationship with Ectopic MUC5AC Expression and Endoscopic Improvement Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:57:57 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/grp/2014/687257/ Background. Adalimumab (ADA) is effective for patients with Crohn’s disease (CD). However, there have been few reports on ADA therapy with respect to its relationship with pathologic findings and drug efficacy in biologically naïve CD cases. Methods. Fifteen patients with active biologically naïve CD were treated with ADA. We examined them clinically and pathologically with ectopic MUC5AC expression in the lesions before and after 12 and 52 weeks of ADA therapy, retrospectively. Results. Both mean CD activity index scores and serum C-reactive protein values were significantly lower after ADA therapy (). In the MUC5AC negative group, all cases exhibited clinical remission (CR) and endoscopic improvement at 52 weeks. In MUC5AC positive groups, loss of MUC5AC expression was detected in cases having CR and endoscopic improvement at 52 weeks, while remnant ectopic MUC5AC expression was observed in those exhibiting no endoscopic improvement and flare up after 52 weeks. Conclusions. ADA leads to CR and endoscopic improvement in biologically naïve CD cases. In addition, ectopic MUC5AC expression may be a predictive marker of flare up and endoscopic improvement in the intestines of CD patients. Tsutomu Mizoshita, Satoshi Tanida, Hironobu Tsukamoto, Keiji Ozeki, Takahito Katano, Hirotaka Nishiwaki, Masahide Ebi, Yoshinori Mori, Eiji Kubota, Hiromi Kataoka, Takeshi Kamiya, and Takashi Joh Copyright © 2014 Tsutomu Mizoshita et al. All rights reserved. Plastic Changes in the Spinal Cord in Motor Neuron Disease Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:56:03 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/670756/ In the present paper, we analyze the cell number within lamina X at the end stage of disease in a G93A mouse model of ALS; the effects induced by lithium; the stem-cell like phenotype of lamina X cells during ALS; the differentiation of these cells towards either a glial or neuronal phenotype. In summary we found that G93A mouse model of ALS produces an increase in lamina X cells which is further augmented by lithium administration. In the absence of lithium these nestin positive stem-like cells preferentially differentiate into glia (GFAP positive), while in the presence of lithium these cells differentiate towards a neuron-like phenotype (βIII-tubulin, NeuN, and calbindin-D28K positive). These effects of lithium are observed concomitantly with attenuation in disease progression and are reminiscent of neurogenetic effects induced by lithium in the subependymal ventricular zone of the hippocampus. Francesco Fornai, Michela Ferrucci, Paola Lenzi, Alessandra Falleni, Francesca Biagioni, Marina Flaibani, Gabriele Siciliano, Francesco Giannessi, and Antonio Paparelli Copyright © 2014 Francesco Fornai et al. All rights reserved. New Insights into the Steen Solution Properties: Breakthrough in Antioxidant Effects via NOX2 Downregulation Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:55:07 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/omcl/2014/242180/ Ex vivo lung perfusion (EVLP) allows perfusion and reconditioning of retrieved lungs for organ transplantation. The Steen solution is specifically designed for this procedure but the mechanism through which it elicits its activity is still to be fully clarified. We speculated that Steen solution may encompass antioxidant properties allowing a reestablishment of pulmonary tissue homeostasis. Blood samples from 10 healthy volunteers were recruited. Platelets and white cells were incubated with Steen solution or buffer solution as control and stimulated with suitable agonists. Reactive oxidant species (ROS), soluble NOX2 (sNOX2-derived peptide), a marker of NADPH oxidase activation, translocation to cell membrane and isoprostanes production, as marker of oxidative stress, and nitric oxide (NO), a powerful vasodilator and antioxidant molecule, were measured upon cell stimulation. The Steen solution significantly inhibited translocation and NOX2 activation in platelets and white cells. Consistent with this finding was the reduction of oxidative stress as documented by a significantly lowered formation of ROS and isoprostanes by both platelets and white cells. Finally, cell incubation with Steen solution resulted in enhanced generation of NO. Herewith, we provide the first evidence that Steen solution possesses antioxidant properties via downregulation of NADPH oxidase activity and enhanced production of NO. Roberto Carnevale, Giuseppe Biondi-Zoccai, Mariangela Peruzzi, Elena De Falco, Isotta Chimenti, Federico Venuta, Marco Anile, Daniele Diso, Elena Cavarretta, Antonino G. M. Marullo, Patrizio Sartini, Pasquale Pignatelli, Francesco Violi, and Giacomo Frati Copyright © 2014 Roberto Carnevale et al. All rights reserved. The Stability of Solutions for a Fractional Predator-Prey System Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:45:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/124145/ We study a class of fractional predator-prey systems with Holling II functional response. A unique positive solution of this system is obtained. In order to prove the asymptotical stability of positive equilibrium for this system, we study the Lyapunov stability theory of a fractional system. Yingjia Guo Copyright © 2014 Yingjia Guo. All rights reserved. Activity Exerted by a Testosterone Derivative on Myocardial Injury Using an Ischemia/Reperfusion Model Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:38:10 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/217865/ Some reports indicate that several steroid derivatives have activity at cardiovascular level; nevertheless, there is scarce information about the activity exerted by the testosterone derivatives on cardiac injury caused by ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). Analyzing these data, in this study, a new testosterone derivative was synthetized with the objective of evaluating its effect on myocardial injury using an ischemia/reperfusion model. In addition, perfusion pressure and coronary resistance were evaluated in isolated rat hearts using the Langendorff technique. Additionally, molecular mechanism involved in the activity exerted by the testosterone derivative on perfusion pressure and coronary resistance was evaluated by measuring left ventricular pressure in the absence or presence of the following compounds: flutamide, prazosin, metoprolol, nifedipine, indomethacin, and PINANE TXA2. The results showed that the testosterone derivative significantly increases the perfusion pressure and coronary resistance in isolated heart. Other data indicate that the testosterone derivative increases left ventricular pressure in a dose-dependent manner (0.001–100 nM); however, this phenomenon was significantly inhibited by indomethacin and PINANE-TXA2   at a dose of 1 nM. In conclusion, these data suggest that testosterone derivative induces changes in the left ventricular pressure levels through thromboxane receptor activation. Figueroa-Valverde Lauro, Díaz-Cedillo Francisco, García-Cervera Elodia, Pool-Gómez Eduardo, López-Ramos Maria, Rosas-Nexticapa Marcela, Hau-Heredia Lenin, Sarabia-Alcocer Betty, and Velázquez-Sarabia Betty Monica Copyright © 2014 Figueroa-Valverde Lauro et al. All rights reserved. The Terminal Hosoya Polynomial of Some Families of Composite Graphs Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:34:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijcom/2014/696507/ Let be a connected graph and let be the set of pendent vertices of . The terminal Hosoya polynomial of is defined as , where denotes the distance between the pendent vertices and . In this note paper we obtain closed formulae for the terminal Hosoya polynomial of rooted product graphs and corona product graphs. Emeric Deutsch and Juan Alberto Rodríguez-Velázquez Copyright © 2014 Emeric Deutsch and Juan Alberto Rodríguez-Velázquez. All rights reserved. Cytoreductive Surgery and HIPEC for Peritoneal Carcinomatosis in the Elderly Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:33:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijso/2014/987475/ Background. The combined treatment of peritoneal carcinomatosis with cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy is a rigorous surgical treatment, most suitable for young and good performance status patients. We evaluated the outcomes of elderly patients undergoing CRS and HIPEC for peritoneal carcinomatosis with careful perioperative care. Methods. All consecutive patients 70 years of age or older who were treated for peritoneal carcinomatosis over the past five years were included. Primary outcomes were perioperative morbidity and mortality. Secondary outcomes were disease-free survival and overall survival. Results. From a pool of 100 patients, with a diagnosis of PC who underwent CRS and HIPEC in our center, we have included 30 patients at an age of 70 years or older and the results were compared to the patients younger than 70 years. The total morbidity rate was 50% versus 41.5% in the group younger than 70 years (NSS). The mortality rate was 3.3% in the elderly group versus 1.43% in the younger group (NSS). Median overall survival was 30 months in the older group versus 38 months in the younger group. Conclusion. Cytoreductive surgery and HIPEC for peritoneal carcinomatosis may be safely performed with acceptable morbidity in selected elderly patients. J. D. Spiliotis, E. Halkia, V. A. Boumis, D. T. Vassiliadou, A. Pagoulatou, and E. Efstathiou Copyright © 2014 J. D. Spiliotis et al. All rights reserved. E-k Relation of Valence Band in Arbitrary Orientation/Typical Plane Uniaxially Strained Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:33:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/acmp/2014/686303/ Uniaxial strain technology is an effective way to improve the performance of the small size CMOS devices, by which carrier mobility can be enhanced. The E-k relation of the valence band in uniaxially strained Si is the theoretical basis for understanding and enhancing hole mobility. The solving procedure of the relation and its analytic expression were still lacking, and the compressive results of the valence band parameters in uniaxially strained Si were not found in the references. So, the E-k relation has been derived by taking strained Hamiltonian perturbation into account. And then the valence band parameters were obtained, including the energy levels at Γ point, the splitting energy, and hole effective masses. Our analytic models and quantized results will provide significant theoretical references for the understanding of the strained materials physics and its design. Zhang Chao, Xu Da-Qing, Liu Shu-Lin, and Liu Ning-Zhuang Copyright © 2014 Zhang Chao et al. All rights reserved. New Type of Sturm-Liouville Problems in Associated Hilbert Spaces Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:21:30 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jfs/2014/606815/ We introduce a new type of discontinuous Sturm-Liouville problems, involving an abstract linear operator in equation. By suggesting own approaches we define some new Hilbert spaces to establish such properties as isomorphism, coerciveness, and maximal decreasing of resolvent operator with respect to spectral parameter. Then we find sufficient conditions for discreteness of the spectrum and examine asymptotic behaviour of eigenvalues. Obtained results are new even for continuous case, that is, without transmission conditions. O. Sh. Mukhtarov and K. Aydemir Copyright © 2014 O. Sh. Mukhtarov and K. Aydemir. All rights reserved. Concomitant Intake of Quercetin with a Grain-Based Diet Acutely Lowers Postprandial Plasma Glucose and Lipid Concentrations in Pigs Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:16:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/748742/ Treatment goals of diabetes mellitus type 2 (DMT2) include glycemic control and reduction of nonglycemic risk factors, for example, dyslipidemia. Quercetin, a plant-derived polyphenol, often discussed for possible antidiabetic effects, was investigated for acute postprandial glucose- and lipid-lowering effects in healthy growing pigs. Male pigs (, body weight = BW 25–30 kg) were fed flavonoid-poor grain-based meals without (GBM) or with quercetin (GBMQ). In a first experiment, postprandial plasma concentrations of glucose, nonesterified fatty acids (NEFA), and triacylglycerols were analyzed in 8 pigs receiving 500 g of either GBM or GBMQ (10 mg/kg BW) in a cross-over design. Blood samples were collected before, and up to 5 h every 30 min, as well as 6 and 8 h after the feeding. In the second experiment, 2 h after ingestions of 1000 g of either GBM or GBMQ (50 mg/kg BW) animals were sacrificed; gastric content was collected and analyzed for dry matter content. Quercetin ingestion reduced postprandial glucose, NEFA, and TG concentration, but two hours after ingestion of the meal no effect on gastric emptying was observed. Our results point to inhibitory effects of quercetin on nutrient absorption, which appear not to be attributable to delayed gastric emptying. Silvia Wein and Siegfried Wolffram Copyright © 2014 Silvia Wein and Siegfried Wolffram. All rights reserved. Animal Models of Subjective Tinnitus Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:08:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/np/2014/741452/ Tinnitus is one of the major audiological diseases, affecting a significant portion of the ageing society. Despite its huge personal and presumed economic impact there are only limited therapeutic options available. The reason for this deficiency lies in the very nature of the disease as it is deeply connected to elementary plasticity of auditory processing in the central nervous system. Understanding these mechanisms is essential for developing a therapy that reverses the plastic changes underlying the pathogenesis of tinnitus. This requires experiments that address individual neurons and small networks, something usually not feasible in human patients. However, in animals such invasive experiments on the level of single neurons with high spatial and temporal resolution are possible. Therefore, animal models are a very critical element in the combined efforts for engineering new therapies. This review provides an overview over the most important features of animal models of tinnitus: which laboratory species are suitable, how to induce tinnitus, and how to characterize the perceived tinnitus by behavioral means. In particular, these aspects of tinnitus animal models are discussed in the light of transferability to the human patients. Wolfger von der Behrens Copyright © 2014 Wolfger von der Behrens. All rights reserved. Transforming Pain into Beauty: On Art, Healing, and Care for the Spirit Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:05:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/789852/ From drawing to sculpture, poetry to journaling, and dance to music and song, the arts can have a major impact on patients’ spiritual well-being and health. The arts empower patients to fulfill the basic human drive to create and give patients a sense of possibility. Through creative expression, patients regain a feeling of wholeness, individually and as part of the larger world. Although spiritual caregivers have made occasional use of the arts, it would be better for the arts to be seen as a pillar of spiritual care provision. This paper provides a model for arts-based spiritual care (chaplaincy) in oncology/hematology and elsewhere. We discuss how to match the art form intervention to the individual patient and give examples of many kinds of uniquely spiritual arts-based interventions. In life, there are occasional “caseuras,” or ruptures. Using a theoretical foundation drawn from theologian Michael Fishbane, our model of arts-based spiritual care bridges the experience of the caesura to a renewed sense of meaning, or spiritual reorientation, that can be discovered within the reality of illness. Additionally, the ambiguity and playfulness inherent to creative expression strengthen the patient’s flexibility and resilience. Rachel Ettun, Michael Schultz, and Gil Bar-Sela Copyright © 2014 Rachel Ettun et al. All rights reserved. Frame-Based Facial Expression Recognition Using Geometrical Features Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:05:05 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ahci/2014/408953/ To improve the human-computer interaction (HCI) to be as good as human-human interaction, building an efficient approach for human emotion recognition is required. These emotions could be fused from several modalities such as facial expression, hand gesture, acoustic data, and biophysiological data. In this paper, we address the frame-based perception of the universal human facial expressions (happiness, surprise, anger, disgust, fear, and sadness), with the help of several geometrical features. Unlike many other geometry-based approaches, the frame-based method does not rely on prior knowledge of a person-specific neutral expression; this knowledge is gained through human intervention and not available in real scenarios. Additionally, we provide a method to investigate the performance of the geometry-based approaches under various facial point localization errors. From an evaluation on two public benchmark datasets, we have found that using eight facial points, we can achieve the state-of-the-art recognition rate. However, this state-of-the-art geometry-based approach exploits features derived from 68 facial points and requires prior knowledge of the person-specific neutral expression. The expression recognition rate using geometrical features is adversely affected by the errors in the facial point localization, especially for the expressions with subtle facial deformations. Anwar Saeed, Ayoub Al-Hamadi, Robert Niese, and Moftah Elzobi Copyright © 2014 Anwar Saeed et al. All rights reserved. Modeling the Dynamics of Shanghai Interbank Offered Rate Based on Single-Factor Short Rate Processes Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:04:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/540803/ Using the Shanghai Interbank Offered Rate data of overnight, 1 week, 2 week and 1 month, this paper provides a comparative analysis of some popular one-factor short rate models, including the Merton model, the geometric Brownian model, the Vasicek model, the Cox-Ingersoll-Ross model, and the mean-reversion jump-diffusion model. The parameter estimation and the model selection of these single-factor short interest rate models are investigated. We document that the most successful model in capturing the Shanghai Interbank Offered Rate is the mean-reversion jump-diffusion model. Xili Zhang Copyright © 2014 Xili Zhang. All rights reserved. Elementary Flux Mode Analysis of Acetyl-CoA Pathway in Carboxydothermus hydrogenoformans Z-2901 Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:04:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/abi/2014/928038/ Carboxydothermus hydrogenoformans is a carboxydotrophic hydrogenogenic bacterium species that produces hydrogen molecule by utilizing carbon monoxide (CO) or pyruvate as a carbon source. To investigate the underlying biochemical mechanism of hydrogen production, an elementary mode analysis of acetyl-CoA pathway was performed to determine the intermediate fluxes by combining linear programming (LP) method available in CellNetAnalyzer software. We hypothesized that addition of enzymes necessary for carbon monoxide fixation and pyruvate dissimilation would enhance the theoretical yield of hydrogen. An in silico gene knockout of pyk, pykC, and mdh genes of modeled acetyl-CoA pathway allows the maximum theoretical hydrogen yield of 47.62 mmol/gCDW/h for 1 mole of carbon monoxide (CO) uptake. The obtained hydrogen yield is comparatively two times greater than the previous experimental data. Therefore, it could be concluded that this elementary flux mode analysis is a crucial way to achieve efficient hydrogen production through acetyl-CoA pathway and act as a model for strain improvement. Rajadurai Chinnasamy Perumal, Ashok Selvaraj, and Gopal Ramesh Kumar Copyright © 2014 Rajadurai Chinnasamy Perumal et al. All rights reserved. Protective Effects of Pretreatment with Oleanolic Acid in Rats in the Acute Phase of Hepatic Ischemia-Reperfusion Injury: Role of the PI3K/Akt Pathway Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:59:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2014/451826/ Oleanolic acid (OA) has been used to treat liver disorders, but whether it can attenuate hepatic ischemia-reperfusion- (IR-) associated liver dysfunction remains unexplored. In the present study, 160 male Sprague-Dawley rats were equally divided into five groups: group SH received neither hepatic IR nor drugs; group IR received hepatic IR without drugs; group CM and group OA received 0.5% sodium carboxymethylcellulose and 100 mg/kg OA, intragastrically, once a day for seven days before the hepatic IR, respectively; on the basis of treatment in group OA, group OA+wortmannin further received 15 g/kg of PI3K inhibitor wortmannin, intraperitoneally, 30 min before the hepatic IR. Then each group was equally divided into four subgroups according to four time points (preoperation, 0 h, 3 h, and 6 h after reperfusion). Serum ALT activity, IL-1 concentration, and hepatic phosphorylation of PI3K, Akt, and GSK-3 protein expression were serially studied. We found that OA pretreatment improved histological status and decreased serum ALT and IL-1 levels. It also increased p-PI3K, p-Akt, and p-GSK-3 protein expression at all the four time points. Prophylactic wortmannin partially reversed OA’s protective effects. The data indicate that OA pretreatment protects liver from IR injury during the acute phase partially through PI3K/Akt-mediated inactivation of GSK-3. Bo Gui, Fuzhou Hua, Jie Chen, Zeping Xu, Hongbin Sun, and Yanning Qian Copyright © 2014 Bo Gui et al. All rights reserved. The Overlap of Dietary Supplement and Pharmaceutical Use in the MIDUS National Study Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:35:51 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/823853/ Introduction. In the United States, dietary supplement (DS) use is common, often takes place outside of the purview of health care providers, and may involve DS in combination with pharmaceuticals. This situation has led to concerns about interactions between DS and pharmaceuticals, as well as the risks from polypharmacy and polysupplement use. Methods. We used data from the Midlife in the US study (MIDUS 2 Survey) to examine DS and prescription pharmaceutical use in 3876 study participants in order to determine the demographics of high-users (5 or more) of DS and pharmaceuticals and the presence of DS-pharmaceutical co-use. Results. Over 69% of study participants regularly used DS, 49.6% regularly used both DS and pharmaceuticals, and 6.3% and 8.7% were high-users of pharmaceuticals and DS, respectively. High-users of DS, pharmaceuticals, and either were more likely than the whole cohort to be female and of lower income. Conclusions. These findings corroborate those of other national studies with respect to the demographics of DS users but add new information about people at risk of DS-pharmaceutical interactions, not an insignificant proportion of the population examined by this dataset. David S. Kiefer, Joe C. Chase, Gayle D. Love, and Bruce P. Barrett Copyright © 2014 David S. Kiefer et al. All rights reserved. Experimental and Numerical Study on Tensile Strength of Concrete under Different Strain Rates Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:32:56 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/173531/ The dynamic characterization of concrete is fundamental to understand the material behavior in case of heavy earthquakes and dynamic events. The implementation of material constitutive law is of capital importance for the numerical simulation of the dynamic processes as those caused by earthquakes. Splitting tensile concrete specimens were tested at strain rates of 10−7 s−1 to 10−4 s−1 in an MTS material test machine. Results of tensile strength versus strain rate are presented and compared with compressive strength and existing models at similar strain rates. Dynamic increase factor versus strain rate curves for tensile strength were also evaluated and discussed. The same tensile data are compared with strength data using a thermodynamic model. Results of the tests show a significant strain rate sensitive behavior, exhibiting dynamic tensile strength increasing with strain rate. In the quasistatic strain rate regime, the existing models often underestimate the experimental results. The thermodynamic theory for the splitting tensile strength of concrete satisfactorily describes the experimental findings of strength as effect of strain rates. Fanlu Min, Zhanhu Yao, and Teng Jiang Copyright © 2014 Fanlu Min et al. All rights reserved. Treatment Comparison in Rheumatoid Arthritis: Head-to-Head Trials and Innovative Study Designs Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:30:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/831603/ Over the last decades, the increasing knowledge in the area of rheumatoid arthritis has progressively expanded the arsenal of available drugs, especially with the introduction of novel targeted therapies such as biological disease modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs). In this situation, rheumatologists are offered a wide range of treatment options, but on the other side the need for comparisons between available drugs becomes more and more crucial in order to better define the strategies for the choice and the optimal sequencing. Indirect comparisons or meta-analyses of data coming from different randomised controlled trials (RCTs) are not immune to conceptual and technical challenges and often provide inconsistent results. In this review we examine some of the possible evolutions of traditional RCTs, such as the inclusion of active comparators, aimed at individualising treatments in real-life conditions. Although head-to-head RCTs may be considered the best tool to directly compare the efficacy and safety of two different DMARDs, surprisingly only 20 studies with such design have been published in the last 25 years. Given the recent advent of the first RCTs truly comparing biological DMARDs, we also review the state of the art of head-to-head trials in RA. Ennio Giulio Favalli, Serena Bugatti, Martina Biggioggero, and Roberto Caporali Copyright © 2014 Ennio Giulio Favalli et al. All rights reserved. A CT Reconstruction Algorithm Based on L1/2 Regularization Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:20:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cmmm/2014/862910/ Computed tomography (CT) reconstruction with low radiation dose is a significant research point in current medical CT field. Compressed sensing has shown great potential reconstruct high-quality CT images from few-view or sparse-view data. In this paper, we use the sparser L1/2 regularization operator to replace the traditional L1 regularization and combine the Split Bregman method to reconstruct CT images, which has good unbiasedness and can accelerate iterative convergence. In the reconstruction experiments with simulation and real projection data, we analyze the quality of reconstructed images using different reconstruction methods in different projection angles and iteration numbers. Compared with algebraic reconstruction technique (ART) and total variance (TV) based approaches, the proposed reconstruction algorithm can not only get better images with higher quality from few-view data but also need less iteration numbers. Mianyi Chen, Deling Mi, Peng He, Luzhen Deng, and Biao Wei Copyright © 2014 Mianyi Chen et al. All rights reserved. Prediction and Experimental Validation of Cutting Force for Bull-Nose End Mills with Lead Angle Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:20:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/650215/ This study focuses on cutting force predictions with the tool-workpiece inclination angle in bull-nose milling based on the semimechanistic force model. By analyzing kinematics and mechanics of the bull-nose end mills during cutting, force expressions including lead angle are stated and the model is exerted on each discrete element as oblique cutting with coordinate transformation and numerical integration to obtain the dynamic cutting force components. An improved identification method considering speed variations along the tool axis is applied to calibrate coefficients. Coefficients are regarded as the function of each elemental elevation. Then, a geometry-based method to acquire cutter workpiece engagement (CWE) is proposed. Also acquisition of accurate start and exit angles on each slice is deliberated elaborately for cutters with lead or tilt angle in milling processes. Thereby, to verify the validity of the force prediction model and start-exit angle acquisition method, experiments with variable lead angles are conducted under different axial immersions. The results reveal that the presented model and approaches can predict cutting forces with high accuracy. Finally, the cutting force components under different cutter postures and conditions are analyzed to provide instructions for parameter selections. Baohai Wu, Ge Gao, Ming Luo, and Gongnan Xie Copyright © 2014 Baohai Wu et al. All rights reserved. Research of a New 6-Dof Force Feedback Hand Controller System Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:20:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jr/2014/646574/ The field of teleoperation with force telepresence has expanded its scope to include manipulation at different scales and in virtual worlds, and the key component of which is force feedback hand controller. This paper presents a novel force feedback hand controller system, including a 3-dof translational and 3-dof rotational hand controllers, respectively, to implement position and posture teleoperation of the robot end effector. The 3-dof translational hand controller adopts innovative three-axes decoupling structure based on the linear motor; the 3-dof rotational hand controller adopts serial mechanism based on three-axes intersecting at one point, improving its overall stiffness. Based on the kinematics, statics, and dynamics analyses for two platforms separately, the system applies big closed-loop force control method based on the zero force/torque, improving the feedback force/torque accuracy effectively. Experimental results show that self-developed 6-dof force feedback hand controller has good mechanical properties. The translational hand controller has the following advantages: simple kinematics solver, fast dynamic response, and better than 0.05 mm accuracy of three-axis end positioning, while the advantages of the rotational hand controller are wide turning space, larger than 1 Nm feedback, greater than 180 degrees of operating space of three axes, respectively, and high operation precision. Xin Gao, Yifan Wang, Jingzhou Song, Qingxuan Jia, and Hanxu Sun Copyright © 2014 Xin Gao et al. All rights reserved. The Study of the Frequency Effect of Dynamic Compressive Loading on Primary Articular Chondrocyte Functions Using a Microcell Culture System Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:15:41 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/762570/ Compressive stimulation can modulate articular chondrocyte functions. Nevertheless, the relevant studies are not comprehensive. This is primarily due to the lack of cell culture apparatuses capable of conducting the experiments in a high throughput, precise, and cost-effective manner. To address the issue, we demonstrated the use of a perfusion microcell culture system to investigate the stimulating frequency (0.5, 1.0, and 2.0 Hz) effect of compressive loading (20% and 40% strain) on the functions of articular chondrocytes. The system mainly integrates the functions of continuous culture medium perfusion and the generation of pneumatically-driven compressive stimulation in a high-throughput micro cell culture system. Results showed that the compressive stimulations explored did not have a significant impact on chondrocyte viability and proliferation. However, the metabolic activity of chondrocytes was significantly affected by the stimulating frequency at the higher compressive strain of 40% (2 Hz, 40% strain). Under the two compressive strains studied, the glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) synthesis was upregulated when the stimulating frequency was set at 1 Hz and 2 Hz. However, the stimulating frequencies explored had no influence on the collagen production. The results of this study provide useful fundamental insights that will be helpful for cartilage tissue engineering and cartilage rehabilitation. Wan-Ying Lin, Yu-Han Chang, Hsin-Yao Wang, Tzu-Chi Yang, Tzu-Keng Chiu, Song-Bin Huang, and Min-Hsien Wu Copyright © 2014 Wan-Ying Lin et al. All rights reserved. Dual PD Control Regulation with Nonlinear Compensation for a Ball and Plate System Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:14:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mpe/2014/894209/ The normal proportional derivative (PD) control is modified to a new dual form for the regulation of a ball and plate system. First, to analyze this controller, a novel complete nonlinear model of the ball and plate system is obtained. Second, an asymptotic stable dual PD control with a nonlinear compensation is developed. Finally, the experimental results of ball and plate system are provided to verify the effectiveness of the proposed methodology. Sergio Galvan-Colmenares, Marco A. Moreno-Armendáriz, José de Jesús Rubio, Floriberto Ortíz-Rodriguez, Wen Yu, and Carlos F. Aguilar-Ibáñez Copyright © 2014 Sergio Galvan-Colmenares et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Jingqian Zhitong Fang on Serum Sex Hormone Levels in Women with Primary Dysmenorrhea Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:11:04 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/876431/ Primary dysmenorrhea is a common gynecological disease garnering increasing attention and research. To investigate the clinical therapeutic effects of Jingqian Zhitong Fang (JQF) and the differences in serum sex hormone levels during the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea, we selected 30 healthy volunteers and 60 individuals with primary dysmenorrhea. On the third day of the menstrual cycle, we used ELISA to determine the levels of serum prolactin (PRL), follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone (TEST), progesterone (PROG), and estradiol (E2) compared with normal levels and levels in the JQF group, the Western medicine group receiving continuous treatment during the first and third menstrual cycles, and the group followed up after the drug was stopped. We observed that after JQF treatment, the levels of the following hormones changed significantly: PRL, LH, TEST, and E2 levels decreased significantly and the PROG level increased significantly after treatment. After treatment with Western medicine, the serum levels of FSH, LH, PROG, and E2 showed no significant change. We conclude that the long-term effect of JQF treatment was better than that of Western medicine. JQF treatment of primary dysmenorrhea is related to adjustment of PRL, LH, TEST, and E2 hormone levels in the human body. Na Dai, Ling Fang, Yu-bo Li, Yu-ming Wang, Ju Yin, and Bao-chan Pu Copyright © 2014 Na Dai et al. All rights reserved. Co-Occurrence of Arthritis and Stroke amongst Middle-Aged and Older Adults in Canada Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:07:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/srt/2014/651921/ Arthritis is a chronic inflammatory condition commonly associated with mobility restriction and reduced activity. To date, the extent to which arthritis is an independent risk factor for stroke is unclear, and important, in light of an aging population. The purpose of this study was to (i) quantify the cross-sectional association between stroke and arthritis and (ii) to determine whether the relationship differed in physically active and inactivemiddle-aged and older adults. Data was derived from the 2010 Canadian Community Health Survey ( ≥30 y). Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate the association between arthritis and stroke in models adjusted for age, physical activity (PA), and demographic factors. Overall, individuals with arthritis were 4 times more likely to report a history of stroke (, 95% CI = 3.06–4.68), whereas those who were engaged in at least moderate PA (≥ 1.5 kcal/kg/day) were less than half as likely (0.45, 0.92−0.62). This effect was moderated by age, as younger (30–65 y: 3.27, 2.22–4.83) but not older adults (>65 y: 1.04, 0.8–1.35) with arthritis had elevated odds of stroke. Both physical inactivity and arthritis are associated with higher odds of stroke, effects of which are the strongest amongst 30–65 year olds. Roman Matveev and Chris I. Ardern Copyright © 2014 Roman Matveev and Chris I. Ardern. All rights reserved. Tribological Performance of Silahydrocarbons Used as Steel-Steel Lubricants under Vacuum and Atmospheric Pressure Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:02:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2014/852386/ The silahydrocarbons of tetraalkylsilanes with different substituted alkyl groups (named as SiCH) were synthesized and evaluated as lubricants for steel-steel contacts by a home-made vacuum four-ball tribometer (VFBT-4000) under atmospheric pressure and under vacuum pressure ( Pa). The SiCH oils possess better thermal stability, low temperature fluidity, and lower saturated vapor pressure than those of multialkylatedcyclopentanes (MACs). The tribological performances of the SiCH oils are also superior to those of MACs and PFPE-Z25 in terms of friction-reduction ability and antiwear capacity under sliding friction at vacuum. The SEM/EDS and XPS results reveal that the boundary lubricating film consisting of compounds is formed by tribochemical reactions and serious adhesion wear under atmospheric pressure and the film consisting of compounds is formed on the worn surface under vacuum pressure. Hai-Zhong Wang, Song-Wei Zhang, Dan Qiao, Da-Peng Feng, and Wei-Min Liu Copyright © 2014 Hai-Zhong Wang et al. All rights reserved. Where Lies the Risk? An Ecological Approach to Understanding Child Mental Health Risk and Vulnerabilities in Sub-Saharan Africa Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:01:59 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/psychiatry/2014/698348/ Efforts at improving child-health and development initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa had focused on the physical health of children due to the neglect of child and adolescent mental health (CAMH) policy initiatives. A thorough and broad-based understanding of the prevalent child mental-health risk and vulnerability factors is needed to successfully articulate CAMH policies. In this discourse, we present a narrative on the child mental-health risk and vulnerability factors in sub-Saharan Africa. Through an ecological point of view, we identified widespread family poverty, poor availability and uptake of childcare resources, inadequate community and institutional childcare systems, and inadequate framework for social protection for vulnerable children as among the risk and vulnerability factors for CAMH in the region. Others are poor workplace policy/practice that does not support work-family life balance, poor legislative framework for child protection, and some harmful traditional practices. We conclude that an ecological approach shows that child mental-health risks are diverse and cut across different layers of the care environment. The approach also provides a broad and holistic template from which appropriate CAMH policy direction in sub-Saharan Africa can be understood. Olayinka Atilola Copyright © 2014 Olayinka Atilola. All rights reserved. Acute Methotrexate Ingestions in Adults: A Report of Serious Clinical Effects and Treatments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:01:33 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jt/2014/214574/ Objective. Limited reported data have reports effects after acute ingestion of methotrexate. Treatment recommendations do not differentiate between exposure routes. Our objective was to determine the frequency of significant toxicity effects and use of therapy after methotrexate ingestion in adults. Methods. We performed a retrospective study on adult cases reported to 6 poison centers over 6 years (2000–2005) which exceed 180,000 exposures/year. Variables collected included demographics, dosages ingested, coingestions, clinical effects, and therapies with outcomes. Results. Sixty-three patients examined over the 6-year period met inclusion criteria. No patient in the series received dialysis or died. The mean dose ingested for all patients was 24 mg (range 2.5–100 mg) and the mean dose for suicidal ingestions was 47.5 mg (12.5–100 mg). The most common clinical effects were abdominal pain, oral irritation, throat irritation, nausea, dizziness, and headache. Nine patients received folinic acid and 3 patients received sodium bicarbonate. No patient developed renal failure, bone marrow suppression, seizure, or coma. No patient died or received dialysis. Conclusion. In our series of patients from 6 poison centers over six years, 63 cases of acute adult methotrexate ingestions were reported. Methotrexate toxicity from ingestion in adults was uncommon and rarely toxic. Vikhyat S. Bebarta, Matthew D. Hensley, and Douglas J. Borys Copyright © 2014 Vikhyat S. Bebarta et al. All rights reserved. Underwater Wireless Sensor Networks Wed, 16 Apr 2014 07:01:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2014/860813/ Dongkyun Kim, Juan Carlos Cano, Wei Wang, Floriano De Rango, and Kun Hua Copyright © 2014 Dongkyun Kim et al. All rights reserved. Parametrically Excited Oscillations of Second-Order Functional Differential Equations and Application to Duffing Equations with Time Delay Feedback Wed, 16 Apr 2014 06:32:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ddns/2014/875020/ We study oscillatory behaviour of a large class of second-order functional differential equations with three freedom real nonnegative parameters. According to a new oscillation criterion, we show that if at least one of these three parameters is large enough, then the main equation must be oscillatory. As an application, we study a class of Duffing type quasilinear equations with nonlinear time delayed feedback and their oscillations excited by the control gain parameter or amplitude of forcing term. Finally, some open questions and comments are given for the purpose of further study on this topic. Mervan Pašić Copyright © 2014 Mervan Pašić. All rights reserved. Palmprint Based Multidimensional Fuzzy Vault Scheme Wed, 16 Apr 2014 06:26:14 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/819031/ Fuzzy vault scheme (FVS) is one of the most popular biometric cryptosystems for biometric template protection. However, error correcting code (ECC) proposed in FVS is not appropriate to deal with real-valued biometric intraclass variances. In this paper, we propose a multidimensional fuzzy vault scheme (MDFVS) in which a general subspace error-tolerant mechanism is designed and embedded into FVS to handle intraclass variances. Palmprint is one of the most important biometrics; to protect palmprint templates; a palmprint based MDFVS implementation is also presented. Experimental results show that the proposed scheme not only can deal with intraclass variances effectively but also could maintain the accuracy and meanwhile enhance security. Hailun Liu, Dongmei Sun, Ke Xiong, and Zhengding Qiu Copyright © 2014 Hailun Liu et al. All rights reserved. Global Bifurcation of a Novel Computer Virus Propagation Model Wed, 16 Apr 2014 06:25:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/731856/ In a recent paper by J. Ren et al. (2012), a novel computer virus propagation model under the effect of the antivirus ability in a real network is established. The analysis there only partially uncovers the dynamics behaviors of virus spread over the network in the case where around bifurcation is local. In the present paper, by mathematical analysis, it is further shown that, under appropriate parameter values, the model may undergo a global B-T bifurcation, and the curves of saddle-node bifurcation, Hopf bifurcation, and homoclinic bifurcation are obtained to illustrate the qualitative behaviors of virus propagation. On this basis, a collection of policies is recommended to prohibit the virus prevalence. To our knowledge, this is the first time the global bifurcation has been explored for the computer virus propagation. Theoretical results and corresponding suggestions may help us suppress or eliminate virus propagation in the network. Jianguo Ren, Yonghong Xu, and Jiming Liu Copyright © 2014 Jianguo Ren et al. All rights reserved. The Research of Periodic Solutions of Time-Varying Differential Models Wed, 16 Apr 2014 06:24:39 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijde/2014/430951/ We have studied the periodicity of solutions of some nonlinear time-varying differential models by using the theory of reflecting functions. We have established a new relationship between the linear differential system and the Riccati equations and applied the obtained results to discuss the behavior of periodic solutions of the Riccati equations. Wenjun Liu, Yingxin Pan, and Zhengxin Zhou Copyright © 2014 Wenjun Liu et al. All rights reserved. Statistical Summability through de la Vallée-Poussin Mean in Probabilistic Normed Spaces Wed, 16 Apr 2014 06:15:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijmms/2014/674159/ Two concepts—one of statistical convergence and the other of de la Vallée-Poussin mean—play an important role in recent research on summability theory. In this work we define a new type of summability methods and statistical completeness involving the ideas of de la Vallée-Poussin mean and statistical convergence in the framework of probabilistic normed spaces. Ayhan Esi Copyright © 2014 Ayhan Esi. All rights reserved. Learning Theory Wed, 16 Apr 2014 06:14:28 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/138960/ Ding-Xuan Zhou, Qiang Wu, and Yiming Ying Copyright © 2014 Ding-Xuan Zhou et al. All rights reserved. Design and Experiment of a Differential-Based Power Split Device Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/981396/ Hybrid electric vehicles have excellent energy efficiency and emission performance. Power split device (PSD) is a key component that directly affects the control strategy of power systems, the economic consumption of fuel, and the dynamic performance of vehicles. A differential-based PSD was proposed in this paper. A traditional differential was taken as the prototype and a new design method is proposed to retrofit the differential into a PSD. First, a comprehensive approach that includes theoretical analysis and software simulation was used to analyze the possibility as well as the necessity of retrofitting the differential into PSD. Then the differential was retrofitted. Finally, finite element analysis and bench test were conducted. Results showed that applying the retrofitted differential as PSD is practicable. Xiaohua Zeng, Yujun Peng, Dafeng Song, Shuai Zheng, Zhongda Wang, and Nannan Yang Copyright © 2014 Xiaohua Zeng et al. All rights reserved. Measurement-Based Delay and Doppler Characterizations for High-Speed Railway Hilly Scenario Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:41:28 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijap/2014/875345/ This paper presents results for delay and Doppler spread characterization in high-speed railway (HSR) hilly scenario. To investigate the propagation characteristics in this specific terrain, a measurement campaign is conducted along the “Guangzhou-Shenzhen” HSR in China. A wideband channel sounder with 40 MHz bandwidth is used to collect raw data at 2.4 GHz band. The delay spread and Doppler frequency features are analyzed based on measured data. It is found that there are abundant multipath components (MPCs) in this scenario. We present the relationship between the delay spreads and the transceiver distances. The measured route can be divided into four areas with different delay and Doppler characteristics. Finally, a tapped delay line (TDL) model is proposed to parameterize the channel responses in the HSR hilly environment, which is supposed to provide criterions for evaluations of the radio interface and development of wireless communication system. Yan Zhang, Zunwen He, Wancheng Zhang, Limin Xiao, and Shidong Zhou Copyright © 2014 Yan Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Application Study of Edge Detection for Droplet in Laser Enhanced GMAW Welding Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:38:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ame/2014/952605/ Ambient pressure has a certain inhibiting effect on underwater welding droplet transfer and the stability of welding process. Good droplet transfer of underwater welding plays an important role in improving repairing quality of underwater structures. As an additional droplet separating force, laser provides effective means in improving the welding quality. For quantitative analysis and comparison of laser enhanced effect on droplet transfer, a high-speed camera system to shoot the process of welding droplet transfer was designed and by adopting the frequency domain operation, a filter aiming at image processing of welding droplet was also designed to filter the ambient noise and diffraction fringe. Through edge detection algorithm, edges of droplet images were detected, and the size of droplet was computed accurately with welding wire as the reference. At last, droplets’ statues under different welding parameters were compared. The results show that the clear images of GMAW droplet separated from the noise background can be acquired, which makes the high-precision quantitative analysis of laser enhanced effect possible. All of the results lay a foundation for further test of laser enhanced hyperbaric underwater welding. Zhu Jialei, Jiao Xiangdong, and Qiao Xi Copyright © 2014 Zhu Jialei et al. All rights reserved. Compact Multiband Slot Antenna for WLAN/WiMAX Operations Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:36:56 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijap/2014/806875/ A novel compact triple-band slot antenna is proposed for WLAN/WiMAX applications. With the use of three L-shaped slots and an open-ended slot on the ground plane, three resonant modes centered at 2.4/3.5/5.8 GHz are excited. These modes cover the standards of 3.5 GHz WiMAX and 2.4/5.8 GHz WLAN, three useful frequency bands for present wireless communication systems. The proposed antenna fed by L-shaped microstrip line has a small overall dimension of  mm2. The numerical and experimental results show that acceptable radiation characteristic is obtained over the operating bands. Jianhui Bao, Qiulin Huang, Xinhuai Wang, and Xiaowei Shi Copyright © 2014 Jianhui Bao et al. All rights reserved. An Improved Group-Based Neighbor Discovery Algorithm for Mobile Sensor Networks Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:36:18 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2014/803870/ Wireless sensor networks have been widely used in a variety of commercial and military applications, which often require neighbor nodes to establish connection quickly. Due to high mobility of nodes, it is a challenging issue to reduce discovery delay. Most discovery designs are based on pairwise and fixed duty cycle, in which discovery is passively achieved when two nodes wake up at the same time. In order to further improve the efficiency of neighbor discovery in mobile sensor networks, this paper proposes an improved group-based neighbor discovery algorithm (IGND) which dynamically adjusts the nodes’ active time based on spatial properties. This paper describes the network model and the algorithm implementation in detail. Simulation results show that the improved algorithm has a good effect in reducing discovery latency and promoting discovery efficiency. Qiang Niu, Weiwei Bao, and Shixiong Xia Copyright © 2014 Qiang Niu et al. All rights reserved. A Shifted Jacobi-Gauss Collocation Scheme for Solving Fractional Neutral Functional-Differential Equations Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:33:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/amp/2014/595848/ The shifted Jacobi-Gauss collocation (SJGC) scheme is proposed and implemented to solve the fractional neutral functional-differential equations with proportional delays. The technique we have proposed is based upon shifted Jacobi polynomials with the Gauss quadrature integration technique. The main advantage of the shifted Jacobi-Gauss scheme is to reduce solving the generalized fractional neutral functional-differential equations to a system of algebraic equations in the unknown expansion. Reasonable numerical results are achieved by choosing few shifted Jacobi-Gauss collocation nodes. Numerical results demonstrate the accuracy, and versatility of the proposed algorithm. A. H. Bhrawy and M. A. Alghamdi Copyright © 2014 A. H. Bhrawy and M. A. Alghamdi. All rights reserved. Applications of Dendrimers in Drug Delivery Agents, Diagnosis, Therapy, and Detection Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:30:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2014/507273/ In recent years, the application of dendrimers in biomedicine attracted much attention from scientists. Dendrimers are interesting for biomedical applications because of their characteristics, including: a hyperbranching, well-defined globular structures, excellent structural uniformity, multivalency, variable chemical composition, and high biological compatibility. In particular, the three-dimensional architecture of dendrimers can incorporate a variety of biologically active agents to form biologically active conjugates. This review of dendrimers focuses on their use as protein mimics, drug delivery agents, anticancer and antiviral therapeutics, and in biomedical diagnostic applications such as chemically modified electrodes. B. Noriega-Luna, Luis A. Godínez, Francisco J. Rodríguez, A. Rodríguez, G. Zaldívar-Lelo de Larrea, C. F. Sosa-Ferreyra, R. F. Mercado-Curiel, J. Manríquez, and E. Bustos Copyright © 2014 B. Noriega-Luna et al. All rights reserved. Sensor Resource Sharing Approaches in Sensor-Cloud Infrastructure Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:29:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2014/476090/ Generally, wireless sensor networks have been designed to support predefined application services. The tight coupling between a network and application limits the usability of sensor data. To increase the utilities of wireless sensor networks, sensor-cloud infrastructure has been proposed to provide an open and flexible platform to gather, store, use, and share data from heterogeneous sensors. In this paper, we introduce sensor-cloud infrastructure and present not only comprehensive technical issues like sensor description and publish/subscribe middleware but also applications using sensor-cloud infrastructure. When the issues are tackled in the development of sensor-cloud system, the attractiveness of new applications and services will considerably be increased for end users. Yujin Lim and Jaesung Park Copyright © 2014 Yujin Lim and Jaesung Park. All rights reserved. Objective and Comprehensive Evaluation of Bisulfite Short Read Mapping Tools Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:28:46 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/abi/2014/472045/ Background. Large-scale bisulfite treatment and short reads sequencing technology allow comprehensive estimation of methylation states of Cs in the genomes of different tissues, cell types, and developmental stages. Accurate characterization of DNA methylation is essential for understanding genotype phenotype association, gene and environment interaction, diseases, and cancer. Aligning bisulfite short reads to a reference genome has been a challenging task. We compared five bisulfite short read mapping tools, BSMAP, Bismark, BS-Seeker, BiSS, and BRAT-BW, representing two classes of mapping algorithms (hash table and suffix/prefix tries). We examined their mapping efficiency (i.e., the percentage of reads that can be mapped to the genomes), usability, running time, and effects of changing default parameter settings using both real and simulated reads. We also investigated how preprocessing data might affect mapping efficiency. Conclusion. Among the five programs compared, in terms of mapping efficiency, Bismark performs the best on the real data, followed by BiSS, BSMAP, and finally BRAT-BW and BS-Seeker with very similar performance. If CPU time is not a constraint, Bismark is a good choice of program for mapping bisulfite treated short reads. Data quality impacts a great deal mapping efficiency. Although increasing the number of mismatches allowed can increase mapping efficiency, it not only significantly slows down the program, but also runs the risk of having increased false positives. Therefore, users should carefully set the related parameters depending on the quality of their sequencing data. Hong Tran, Jacob Porter, Ming-an Sun, Hehuang Xie, and Liqing Zhang Copyright © 2014 Hong Tran et al. All rights reserved. Synthetic Strategies and Applications of GaN Nanowires Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:27:03 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/acmp/2014/456163/ GaN is an important III-V semiconductor material with a direct band gap of 3.4 eV at 300 K. The wide direct band gap makes GaN an attractive material for various applications. GaN nanowires have demonstrated significant potential as fundamental building blocks for nanoelectronic and nanophotonic devices and also offer substantial promise for integrated nanosystems. In this paper, we provide a comprehensive review on the general synthetic strategies, characterizations, and applications of GaN nanowires. We first summarize several growth techniques of GaN nanowires. Subsequently, we discuss mechanisms involved to generate GaN nanowires from different synthetic schemes and conditions. Then we review some characterization methods of GaN nanowires. Finally, several kinds of main applications of GaN nanowires are discussed. Guoquan Suo, Shuai Jiang, Juntao Zhang, Jianye Li, and Meng He Copyright © 2014 Guoquan Suo et al. All rights reserved. Stochastic Maximum Principle for Partial Information Optimal Control Problem of Forward-Backward Systems Involving Classical and Impulse Controls Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:26:28 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/452124/ We study the partial information classical and impulse controls problem of forward-backward systems driven by Lévy processes, where the control variable consists of two components: the classical stochastic control and the impulse control; the information available to the controller is possibly less than the full information, that is, partial information. We derive a maximum principle to give the sufficient and necessary optimality conditions for the local critical points of the classical and impulse controls problem. As an application, we apply the maximum principle to a portfolio optimization problem with piecewise consumption processes and give its explicit solutions. Yan Wang, Aimin Song, and Enmin Feng Copyright © 2014 Yan Wang et al. All rights reserved. Transcriptional Response of Selenopolypeptide Genes and Selenocysteine Biosynthesis Machinery Genes in Escherichia coli during Selenite Reduction Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:25:16 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijmicro/2014/394835/ Bacteria can reduce toxic selenite into less toxic, elemental selenium (Se0), but the mechanism on how bacterial cells reduce selenite at molecular level is still not clear. We used Escherichia coli strain K12, a common bacterial strain, as a model to study its growth response to sodium selenite (Na2SeO3) treatment and then used quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) to quantify transcript levels of three E. coli selenopolypeptide genes and a set of machinery genes for selenocysteine (SeCys) biosynthesis and incorporation into polypeptides, whose involvements in the selenite reduction are largely unknown. We determined that 5 mM Na2SeO3 treatment inhibited growth by ∼50% while 0.001 to 0.01 mM treatments stimulated cell growth by ∼30%. Under 50% inhibitory or 30% stimulatory Na2SeO3 concentration, selenopolypeptide genes (fdnG, fdoG, and fdhF) whose products require SeCys but not SeCys biosynthesis machinery genes were found to be induced ≥2-fold. In addition, one sulfur (S) metabolic gene iscS and two previously reported selenite-responsive genes sodA and gutS were also induced ≥2-fold under 50% inhibitory concentration. Our findings provide insight about the detoxification of selenite in E. coli via induction of these genes involved in the selenite reduction process. Antonia Y. Tetteh, Katherine H. Sun, Chiu-Yueh Hung, Farooqahmed S. Kittur, Gordon C. Ibeanu, Daniel Williams, and Jiahua Xie Copyright © 2014 Antonia Y. Tetteh et al. All rights reserved. Convergence in Distribution of Some Self-Interacting Diffusions Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:24:39 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jps/2014/364321/ The present paper is concerned with some self-interacting diffusions living on . These diffusions are solutions to stochastic differential equations: , where is the empirical mean of the process , is an asymptotically strictly convex potential, and is a given positive function. We study the asymptotic behaviour of for three different families of functions . If with small enough, then the process converges in distribution towards the global minima of , whereas if or if , then converges in distribution if and only if. Aline Kurtzmann Copyright © 2014 Aline Kurtzmann. All rights reserved. Multiple Results to Some Biharmonic Problems Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:24:05 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aaa/2014/267052/ We study a nonlinear elliptic problem defined in a bounded domain involving biharmonic operator together with an asymptotically linear term. We establish at least three nontrivial solutions using the topological degree theory and the critical groups. Xingdong Tang and Jihui Zhang Copyright © 2014 Xingdong Tang and Jihui Zhang. All rights reserved. Semisupervised Location Awareness in Wireless Sensor Networks Using Laplacian Support Vector Regression Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:17:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijdsn/2014/265801/ Supervised machine learning has been widely used in context-aware wireless sensor networks (WSNs) to discover context descriptions from sensor data. However, collecting a lot of labeled training data in order to guarantee good performance requires much cost and time. For this reason, the semisupervised learning has been recently developed due to its superior performance despite using only a small amount of the labeled data. In this paper, we extend the standard support vector regression (SVR) to the semisupervised SVR by employing manifold regularization, which we call Laplacian SVR (LapSVR). The LapSVR is compared with the standard SVR and the semisupervised least square algorithm that is another recently developed semisupervised regression algorithm. The algorithms are evaluated for location awareness of multiple mobile robots in a WSN. The experimental results show that the proposed algorithm yields more accurate location estimates than the other algorithms. Jaehyun Yoo and H. Jin Kim Copyright © 2014 Jaehyun Yoo and H. Jin Kim. All rights reserved. Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome—Hypermobility Type and Hemorrhoids Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:17:02 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/cris/2014/171803/ Ehlers-Danlos syndrome-hypermobility type (EDS-HT) is a connective tissue disorder associated with chronic musculoskeletal pain. The diagnosis is based on simple clinical examination, although it is easily overlooked. Herein we present a case of EDS-HT associated with hemorrhoids and suggest that there may be an association between the two conditions. Timothy P. Plackett, Edward Kwon, Ronald A. Gagliano Jr., and Robert C. Oh Copyright © 2014 Timothy P. Plackett et al. All rights reserved. Geometrical Variable Weights Buffer GM(1,1) Model and Its Application in Forecasting of China’s Energy Consumption Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:16:22 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jam/2014/131432/ In order to improve the application area and the prediction accuracy of GM(1,1) model, a novel Grey model is proposed in this paper. To remedy the defects about the applications of traditional Grey model and buffer operators in medium- and long-term forecasting, a Variable Weights Buffer Grey model is proposed. The proposed model integrates the variable weights buffer operator with the background value optimized GM(1,1) model to implement dynamic preprocessing of original data. Taking the maximum degree of Grey incidence between fitting value and actual value as objective function, then the optimal buffer factor is chosen, which can improve forecasting precision, make forecasting results embodying the internal trend of original data to the maximum extent, and improve the stability of the prediction. To verify the effectiveness of the proposed model, the energy consumption in China from 2002 to 2009 is used for the modeling to forecast the energy consumption in China from 2010 to 2020, and the forecasting results prove that the GVGM(1,1) model has remarkably improved the forecasting ability of medium- and long-term energy consumption in China. Wei Li and Han Xie Copyright © 2014 Wei Li and Han Xie. All rights reserved. Selective Evolution of Ligands by Exponential Enrichment to Identify RNA Aptamers against Shiga Toxins Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:18:04 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jna/2014/214929/ Infection with Shiga toxin- (Stx-) producing E. coli causes life threatening hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a leading cause of acute renal failure in children. Of the two antigenically distinct toxins, Stx1 and Stx2, Stx2 is more firmly linked with the development of HUS. In the present study, selective evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX) was used in an attempt to identify RNA aptamers against Stx1 and Stx2. After 5 rounds of selection, significant enrichment of aptamer pool was obtained against Stx2, but not against Stx1, using a RNA aptamer library containing 56 random nucleotides (N56). Characterization of individual aptamer sequences revealed that six unique RNA aptamers (mA/pC, mB/pA, mC, mD, pB, and pD) recognized Stx2 in a filter binding assay. None of these aptamers bound Stx1. Aptamers mA/pC, mB/pA, mC, and mD, but not pB and pD, partially blocked binding of Alexa 488-labeled Stx2 with HeLa cells in a flow cytometry assay. However, none of the aptamers neutralized Stx2-mediated cytotoxicity and death of HeLa cells. Sreerupa Challa, Saul Tzipori, and Abhineet Sheoran Copyright © 2014 Sreerupa Challa et al. All rights reserved. Accurate, Fast and Cost-Effective Diagnostic Test for Monosomy 1p36 Using Real-Time Quantitative PCR Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:14:29 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/dm/2014/836082/ Monosomy 1p36 is considered the most common subtelomeric deletion syndrome in humans and it accounts for 0.5–0.7% of all the cases of idiopathic intellectual disability. The molecular diagnosis is often made by microarray-based comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH), which has the drawback of being a high-cost technique. However, patients with classic monosomy 1p36 share some typical clinical characteristics that, together with its common prevalence, justify the development of a less expensive, targeted diagnostic method. In this study, we developed a simple, rapid, and inexpensive real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay for targeted diagnosis of monosomy 1p36, easily accessible for low-budget laboratories in developing countries. For this, we have chosen two target genes which are deleted in the majority of patients with monosomy 1p36: PRKCZ and SKI. In total, 39 patients previously diagnosed with monosomy 1p36 by aCGH, fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH), and/or multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) all tested positive on our qPCR assay. By simultaneously using these two genes we have been able to detect 1p36 deletions with 100% sensitivity and 100% specificity. We conclude that qPCR of PRKCZ and SKI is a fast and accurate diagnostic test for monosomy 1p36, costing less than 10 US dollars in reagent costs. Pricila da Silva Cunha, Heloisa B. Pena, Carla Sustek D’Angelo, Celia P. Koiffmann, Jill A. Rosenfeld, Lisa G. Shaffer, Martin Stofanko, Higgor Gonçalves-Dornelas, and Sérgio Danilo Junho Pena Copyright © 2014 Pricila da Silva Cunha et al. All rights reserved. Efficient Photocatalytic Degradation of Rhodamine B Dye by Aligned Arrays of Self-Assembled Hydrogen Titanate Nanotubes Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:13:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnm/2014/328618/ We show that an aligned array of hydrothermally grown, multiwalled hydrogen titanate (H2Ti3O7) nanotubes—anchored to both faces of a metallic Ti foil—acts as an efficient photocatalyst. We studied the degradation of rhodamine B dye in the presence of the nanostructured photocatalyst under UV irradiation, by monitoring the optical absorption of the dye. Rhodamine B was chosen as a representative—and particularly harmful—industrial pollutant dye. The inner and outer diameters of the H2Ti3O7 nanotubes were 5 nm and 10 nm, respectively. The nanotube array catalyst is recyclable and structurally stable. Most importantly, it shows comparable or higher photodecomposition rate constant than those of both H2Ti3O7 nanotube powder and P-25 (Degussa). The enhanced photocatalytic performance may be ascribed to the nanotube array having a superhydrophilic surface with a high accessible surface area. Sriparna Chatterjee, Avesh K. Tyagi, and Pushan Ayyub Copyright © 2014 Sriparna Chatterjee et al. All rights reserved. Measurement of Congestion in the Simultaneous Presence of Desirable and Undesirable Outputs Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:12:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jam/2014/512157/ The concept of congestion, which is mainly applied in economics, refers to a situation where inputs are overinvested. Many studies have focused on congestion measurement by means of data envelopment analysis (DEA). However, most of the previous investigations only considered the framework of desirable outputs. In fact, firms in the real world unavoidably generate undesirable outputs (such as pollutants or wastes) along with desirable outputs. Therefore, a new scheme is required for measuring congestion in the simultaneous presence of both desirable and undesirable outputs. This paper develops a nonradial efficiency measure for including undesirable outputs into the environmental performance. Based on the proposed model, a new definition and a new approach are presented to deal with congestion in the simultaneous presence of desirable and undesirable outputs. Then, this paper uses the presented method to study the pollutants (waste gas emission and waste discharge) of 31 administrative regions of China. The finding indicates that 7 industries pay attention to the reduction of their pollutants accompanying improvement of their commercial targets. Consequently, they do not show congestion in any input. H. Zare-Haghighi, M. Rostamy-Malkhalifeh, and G. R. Jahanshahloo Copyright © 2014 H. Zare-Haghighi et al. All rights reserved. A Comparative Study of Electric Load Curve Changes in an Urban Low-Voltage Substation in Spain during the Economic Crisis (2008–2013) Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:12:29 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/948361/ This paper presents a comparative study of the electricity consumption (EC) in an urban low-voltage substation before and during the economic crisis (2008–2013). This low-voltage substation supplies electric power to near 400 users. The EC was measured for an 11-year period (2002–2012) with a sampling time of 1 minute. The study described in the paper consists of detecting the changes produced in the load curves of this substation along the time due to changes in the behaviour of consumers. The EC was compared using representative curves per time period (precrisis and crisis). These representative curves were obtained after a computational process, which was based on a search for days with similar curves to the curve of a determined (base) date. This similitude was assessed by the proximity on the calendar, day of the week, daylight time, and outdoor temperature. The last selection parameter was the error between the nearest neighbour curves and the base date curve. The obtained representative curves were linearized to determine changes in their structure (maximum and minimum consumption values, duration of the daily time slot, etc.). The results primarily indicate an increase in the EC in the night slot during the summer months in the crisis period. Pedro M. Lara-Santillán, Montserrat Mendoza-Villena, L. Alfredo Fernández-Jiménez, and Mario Mañana-Canteli Copyright © 2014 Pedro M. Lara-Santillán et al. All rights reserved. Geographic Mapping of Crohn’s Disease and Its Relation to Affluence in Jiangsu Province, an Eastern Coastal Province of China Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:11:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/grp/2014/590467/ Background. Geographical variation in the incidence of Crohn’s disease (CD) has been reported in Europe and North American. However, there are no comparable data in mainland China. Methods. We retrospectively identified incident cases of CD patients registered in Jinling hospital during 2003 to 2012. The standardized incidence ratio (SIR) was calculated for each area of Jiangsu province and a thematic map of CD was made according to the local SIR. The association between incidence and local economic status was revealed by correlation between SIR of CD and different local economic indicators. Results. A total of 653 CD patients (male-to-female ratio, 1.8 : 1) from Jiangsu province were included. A steady increase was observed in the number of CD patients over the period of observation. Disease map of SIR showed a pronounced geographic concentration of CD in the south part of Jiangsu province. Spearman correlation analysis showed a positive correlation between local SIR of CD and local economic indicators. Conclusions. There is a marked geographic variability in CD incidence across Jiangsu province. CD incidence in affluent areas seems to be higher than that in less affluent areas. Further multicenter population-based studies are needed to assess the real disease map of CD. Dong Hu, Jianan Ren, Gefei Wang, Guosheng Gu, Song Liu, Xiuwen Wu, Jun Chen, Huajian Ren, Zhiwu Hong, and Jieshou Li Copyright © 2014 Dong Hu et al. All rights reserved. Etiology and Use of the “Hanging Drop” Technique: A Review Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:11:11 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/prt/2014/146750/ Background. The hanging drop (HD) technique presumably relies on the presence of subatmospheric epidural pressure. It is not clear whether this negative pressure is intrinsic or an artifact and how it is affected by body position. There are few data to indicate how often HD is currently being used. Methods. We identified studies that measured subatmospheric pressures and looked at the effect of the sitting position. We also looked at the technique used for cervical and thoracic epidural anesthesia in the last 10 years. Results. Intrinsic subatmospheric pressures were measured in the thoracic and cervical spine. Three trials studied the effect of body position, indicating a higher incidence of subatmospheric pressures when sitting. The results show lower epidural pressure (−10.7 mmHg) with the sitting position. 28.8% of trials of cervical and thoracic epidural anesthesia that documented the technique used, utilized the HD technique. When adjusting for possible bias, the rate of HD use can be as low as 11.7%. Conclusions. Intrinsic negative pressure might be present in the cervical and thoracic epidural space. This effect is more pronounced when sitting. This position might be preferable when using HD. Future studies are needed to compare it with the loss of resistance technique. Ludmil Todorov and Timothy VadeBoncouer Copyright © 2014 Ludmil Todorov and Timothy VadeBoncouer. All rights reserved. A Study of Sedentary Behaviour in the Older Finnish Twin Cohort: A Cross Sectional Analysis Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:10:27 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/209140/ The aim of the study was to investigate the effects of age, sex, and body mass index (BMI) on total sitting time among the Finnish twin cohort. Also, heritability and environmental factors were analysed. The final sample included 6713 twin individuals 53–67 years of age (46% men). Among them there were 1940 complete twin pairs (732 monozygotic [MZ] and 1208 dizygotic [DZ] twin pairs). Sedentary behaviour was queried with a self-reported questionnaire with multiple-choice questions about sitting time at different domains. The mean total sitting time per day was 6 hours 41 minutes (standard deviation: 2 hours 41 minutes). The total sitting time was less in women than in men (). Older age was associated with less total sitting time (). Those with higher body mass index had higher total sitting time in age and sex adjusted analysis (). MZ pairs were more similar for sitting time than DZ pairs, with initial estimates of heritability for the total sitting time of 35%.The influence of shared environmental factors was negligible (1%), while most (64%) of the variation could be ascribed to unique environmental factors, the latter including measurement error. Maarit Piirtola, Jaakko Kaprio, and Annina Ropponen Copyright © 2014 Maarit Piirtola et al. All rights reserved.