Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Abstract Count: 53163

Biomedical and Biological Engineering

721
94803
X-Ray Fluorescence Molecular Imaging with Improved Sensitivity for Biomedical Applications
Abstract:
X-ray Fluorescence Molecular Imaging (XFMI) holds great promise as a low-cost molecular imaging modality for biomedical applications with high chemical sensitivity. However, for in vivo biomedical applications, a key technical bottleneck is the relatively low chemical sensitivity of XFMI, especially at a reasonably low radiation dose. In laboratory x-ray source based XFMI, one of the main factors that limits the chemical sensitivity of XFMI is the scattered x-rays. We will present our latest findings on improving the chemical sensitivity of XFMI using excitation beam spectrum optimization. XFMI imaging experiments on two mouse-sized phantoms were conducted at three different excitation beam spectra. Our result show that the minimum detection concentration (MDC) of iodine can be readily increased by five times via excitation spectrum optimization. Findings from this investigation could find use for in vivo pre-clinical small-animal XFMI in the future.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
720
94338
The Relevance of Bioinspired Architecture and Programmable Materials for Development of 4D Printing
Abstract:
Nature has long served as inspiration for humans, since various technologies present in society are a mirror of the natural world. This is due to the fact that nature has adapted for millions of years to possess the characteristics they have today. In this sense, man takes advantage of this situation and uses it to produce his own objects and solve his problems. This concept, which is known as biomimetics, is something relatively new, once it was only denominated in 1957. Nature, in turn, responds directly and consistently to environmental conditions. For example, plants that have touch sensitivity contract with this stimulus. Such a situation resembles a technology that has been gaining ground in the contemporary world of scientific innovation: 4D printing. 4D printing technology emerged in 2012 as a complement to 3D printing and presents numerous benefits since it provides a deficiency in the second kind of printing mentioned. This type of technology reaches several areas, since it is capable of producing materials that change over time, be it in its composition, form or properties and is such a characteristic that determines the additional dimension of the material. Precisely because of these factors, this type of impression resembles nature and is related to biomimetics. However, only certain types of ‘intelligent’ materials are generally employed in this type of impression, since only they will respond well to such stimuli, one of which is the hydrogel. The hydrogel is a biocompatible polymer that presents several applications, these in turn will be briefly mentioned in this article to exemplify its importance and the reason for choosing this material as object of study. In addition, aspects that configure 4D printing will be treated here, such as the importance of architecture, programming language and the reversibility of printed materials.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
719
94038
Deformation of Particle-Laden Droplet in Viscous Liquid under DC Electric Fields
Abstract:
Electric fields have proven useful for inducing droplet deformation and to structure particles adsorbed at droplet interfaces. In this experimental research, direct current electric fields were applied to deform particle-covered droplets made out of silicone oil and immersed in castor oil. The viscosity of the drop and surrounding fluid were changed by external heating. We designed an experimental system in such a way that electric field-induced electrohydrodynamic (EHD) flows were asymmetric and only present on one side of the drop, i.e., the droplet adjoined a washer and adhered to one of the electrodes constituting the sample cell. The study investigated the influence of viscosity on the steady-state deformation magnitude of particle-laden droplets, droplet compression, and relaxation, as well as particle arrangements at drop interfaces. Initially, before the application of an electric field, we changed the viscosity of the fluids by heating the sample cell at different temperatures. The viscosity of the fluids was varied by changing the temperature of the fluids from 25 to 50°C. Under the application of a uniform electric field of strength 290 Vmm⁻¹, electric stress was induced at the drop interface, yielding drop deformation. In our study, we found that by lowering the fluid viscosity, the velocity of the EHD flows was increased, which also increases the deformation of the drop.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
718
93950
Low-Cost, Robotic-Assisted Laparoscope
Abstract:
Laparoscopy is a surgical operation, well known as keyhole surgery. The operation is performed through small holes, hence, scars of a patient become much smaller, patients can recover in a short time and hospital stay become shorter in comparison to an open surgery. Several tools are used in laparoscopic operations; among them, the laparoscope has a crucial role. It provides the vision during the operation, which will be the main focus in here. Since the operation area is very small, the motion of the surgical tools might be limited in laparoscopic operations compared to traditional surgeries. To overcome this limitation, most of the laparoscopic tools have become more precise, dexterous, multi-functional or automated. Here, we present a robotic-assisted laparoscope that is controlled with pedals directly by a surgeon. Thus, the movement of the laparoscope might be controlled better, so there will not be a need to calibrate the camera during the operation. The need for an assistant that controls the movement of the laparoscope will be eliminated. The duration of the laparoscopic operation might be shorter since the surgeon will directly operate the camera.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
717
93941
Electric Field-Induced Deformation of Particle-Laden Drops and Structuring of Surface Particles
Abstract:
Drops covered by particles have found important uses in various fields, ranging from stabilization of emulsions to production of new advanced materials. Particles at drop interfaces can be interlocked to form solid capsules with properties tailored for a myriad of applications. Despite the huge potential of particle-laden drops and capsules, the knowledge of their deformation and stability are limited. In this regard, we contribute with experimental studies on the deformation and manipulation of silicone oil drops covered with micrometer-sized particles subjected to electric fields. A mixture of silicone oil and particles were immersed in castor oil using a mechanical pipette, forming millimeter sized drops. The particles moved and adsorbed at the drop interfaces by sedimentation, and were structured at the interface by electric field-induced electrohydrodynamic flows. When applying a direct current electric field, free charges accumulated at the drop interfaces, yielding electric stress that deformed the drops. In our experiments, we investigated how particle properties affected drop deformation, break-up, and particle structuring. We found that by increasing the size of weakly-conductive clay particles, the drop shape can go from compressed to stretched out in the direction of the electric field. Increasing the particle size and electrical properties were also found to weaken electrohydrodynamic flows, induce break-up of drops at weaker electric field strengths and structure particles in chains. These particle parameters determine the dipolar force between the interfacial particles, which can yield particle chaining. We conclude that the balance between particle chaining and electrohydrodynamic flows governs the observed drop mechanics.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
716
93480
Development of Optimized Eye Mascara Packages with Bioinspired Spiral Methodology
Abstract:
In the present days, packages are considered a fundamental element in the commercialization of products and services. A good package is capable of helping to attract new customers and also increasing a product’s purchase intent. In this scenario, packaging design emerges as an important tool, since products and design of their packaging are so interconnected that they are no longer seen as separate elements. Packaging design is, in fact, capable of generating desire for a product. The packaging market for cosmetics, especially makeup market, has also been experiencing an increasing level of sophistication and requirements. Considering packaging represents an important link of communication with the final user and plays a significant role on the sales process, it is of great importance that packages accomplish not only with functional requirements but also with the visual appeal. One of the possibilities for the design of packages and, in this context, packages for make-up, is the bioinspired design – or biomimicry. The bio-inspired design presents a promising paradigm for innovation in both design and sustainable design, by using biological system analogies to develop solutions. It has gained importance as a widely diffused movement in design for environmentally conscious development and is also responsible for several useful and innovative designs. As eye mascara packages are also part of the constant evolution on the design for cosmetics area and the traditional packages present the disadvantage of product drying along time, this project aims to develop a new and innovative package for this product, by using a selected bioinspired design methodology during the development process and also suitable computational tools. In order to guide the development process of the package, it was chosen the spiral methodology, conceived by The Biomimicry Institut, which consists of a reliable tool, since it was based on traditional design methodologies. The spiral design comprises identification, translation, discovery, abstraction, emulation and evaluation steps, that can work iteratively as the process develops as a spiral. As support tool for packaging, 3D modelling is being used by the software Inventor Autodesk Inventor 2018. Although this is an ongoing research, first results showed that spiral methodology design, together with Autodesk Inventor, consist of suitable instruments for the bio-inspired design process, and also nature proved itself to be an amazing and inexhaustible source of inspiration.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
715
92967
Design and Construction of a Device to Facilitate the Stretching of a Plantiflexors Muscles in the Therapy of Rehabilitation for Patients with Spastic Hemiplegia
Abstract:
Spasticity in the plantiflexor muscles as a product of stroke (CVA-Cerebrovascular accident) restricts the mobility and independence of the affected people. Commonly, physiotherapists are in charge of manually performing the rehabilitation therapy known as Sustained Mechanical Stretching, rotating the affected foot of the patient in the sagittal plane. However, this causes a physical wear on the professional because it is a fatiguing movement. In this article, a mechanical device is developed to implement this rehabilitation therapy more efficiently. The device consists of a worm-crown mechanism that is driven by a crank to gradually rotate a platform in the sagittal plane of the affected foot, in order to achieve dorsiflexion. The device has a range of sagittal rotation up to 150° and has velcro located on the footplate that secures the foot. The design of this device was modeled by using CAD software and was checked structurally with a general purpose finite element software to be sure that the device is safe for human use. As a measurement system, a goniometer is used in the lateral part of the device and load cells are used to measure the force in order to determine the opposing torque exerted by the muscle. Load cells sensitivity is 1.8 ± 0.002 and has a repeatability of 0.03. Validation of the effectiveness of the device is measured by reducing the opposition torque and increasing mobility for a given patient. In this way, with a more efficient therapy, an improvement in the recovery of the patient's mobility and therefore in their quality of life can be achieved.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
714
92517
Comparative Evaluation of Accuracy of Selected Machine Learning Classification Techniques for Diagnosis of Cancer: A Data Mining Approach
Abstract:
With recent trends in Big Data and advancements in Information and Communication Technologies, the healthcare industry is at the stage of its transition from clinician oriented to technology oriented. Many people around the world die of cancer because the diagnosis of disease was not done at an early stage. Nowadays, the computational methods in the form of Machine Learning (ML) are used to develop automated decision support systems that can diagnose cancer with high confidence in a timely manner. This paper aims to carry out the comparative evaluation of a selected set of ML classifiers on two existing datasets: breast cancer and cervical cancer. The ML classifiers compared in this study are Decision Tree (DT), Support Vector Machine (SVM), k-Nearest Neighbor (k-NN), Logistic Regression, Ensemble (Bagged Tree) and Artificial Neural Networks (ANN). The evaluation is carried out based on standard evaluation metrics Precision (P), Recall (R), F1-score and Accuracy. The experimental results based on the evaluation metrics show that ANN showed the highest-level accuracy (99.4%) when tested with breast cancer dataset. On the other hand, when these ML classifiers are tested with the cervical cancer dataset, Ensemble (Bagged Tree) technique gave better accuracy (93.1%) in comparison to other classifiers.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
713
91765
Real-Time Classification of Hemodynamic Response by Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Using an Adaptive Estimation of General Linear Model Coefficients
Abstract:
Near-infrared spectroscopy allows monitoring of oxy- and deoxy-hemoglobin concentration changes associated with hemodynamic response function (HRF). HRF is usually affected by natural physiological hemodynamic (systemic interferences) which occur in all body tissues including brain tissue. This makes HRF extraction a very challenging task. In this study, we used Kalman filter based on a general linear model (GLM) of brain activity to define the proportion of systemic interference in the brain hemodynamic. The performance of the proposed algorithm is evaluated in terms of the peak to peak error (Ep), mean square error (MSE), and Pearson’s correlation coefficient (R2) criteria between the estimated and the simulated hemodynamic responses. This technique also has the ability of real time estimation of single trial functional activations as it was applied to classify finger tapping versus resting state. The average real-time classification accuracy of 74% over 11 subjects demonstrates the feasibility of developing an effective functional near infrared spectroscopy for brain computer interface purposes (fNIRS-BCI).
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
712
91632
Portable Palpation Probe for Diabetic Foot Ulceration Monitoring
Authors:
Abstract:
Palpation is widely used to measure soft tissue firmness or stiffness in the living condition in order to apply detection, diagnosis, and treatment of tumors, scar tissue, abnormal muscle tone, or muscle spasticity. Since these methods are subjective and depend on the proficiency level, it is concluded that there are other diagnoses depending on the condition of the experts and the results are not objective. The mechanical property obtained by using the elasticity of the tissue is important to calculate a predictive variable for monitoring abnormal tissues. If the mechanical load such as reaction force on the foot increases in the same region under the same conditions, the mechanical property of the tissue is changed. Therefore, objective diagnosis is possible not only for experts but also for patients using this quantitative information. Furthermore, the portable system also allows non-experts to easily diagnose at home, not in hospitals or institutions. In this paper, we introduce a portable palpation system that can be used to measure the mechanical properties of human tissue, which can be applied to monitor diabetic foot ulceration patients with measuring the mechanical property change of foot tissue. The system was designed to be smaller and portable in comparison with the conventional palpation systems. It is consists of the probe, the force sensor, linear actuator, micro control unit, the display module, battery, and housing. Using this system, we performed validation experiments by applying different palpations (3 and 5 mm) to soft tissue (silicone rubber) and measured reaction forces. In addition, we estimated the elastic moduli of the soft tissue against different palpations and compare the estimated elastic moduli that show similar value even if the palpation depths are different.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
711
91628
Business Intelligence Dashboard Solutions for Improving Decision Making Process: A Focus on Prostate Cancer
Abstract:
Background: Decision-making processes are nowadays driven by data, data analytics and Business Intelligence (BI). BI as a software platform can provide a wide variety of capabilities such as organization memory, information integration, insight creation and presentation capabilities. Visualizing data through dashboards is one of the BI solutions (for a variety of areas) which helps managers in the decision making processes to expose the most informative information at a glance. In the healthcare domain to date, dashboard presentations are more frequently used to track performance related metrics and less frequently used to monitor those quality parameters which relate directly to patient outcomes. Providing effective and timely care for patients and improving the health outcome are highly dependent on presenting and visualizing data and information. Objective: In this research, the focus is on the presentation capabilities of BI to design a dashboard for prostate cancer (PC) data that allows better decision making for the patients, the hospital and the healthcare system related to a cancer dataset. The aim of this research is to customize a retrospective PC dataset in a dashboard interface to give a better understanding of data in the categories (risk factors, treatment approaches, disease control and side effects) which matter most to patients as well as other stakeholders. By presenting the outcome in the dashboard we address one of the major targets of a value-based health care (VBHC) delivery model which is measuring the value and presenting the outcome to different actors in HC industry (such as patients and doctors) for a better decision making. Method: For visualizing the stored data to users, three interactive dashboards based on the PC dataset have been developed (using the Tableau Software) to provide better views to the risk factors, treatment approaches, and side effects. Results: Many benefits derived from interactive graphs and tables in dashboards which helped to easily visualize and see the patients at risk, better understanding the relationship between patient's status after treatment and their initial status before treatment, or to choose better decision about treatments with fewer side effects regarding patient status and etc. Conclusions: Building a well-designed and informative dashboard is related to three important factors including; the users, goals and the data types. Dashboard's hierarchies, drilling, and graphical features can guide doctors to better navigate through information. The features of the interactive PC dashboard not only let doctors ask specific questions and filter the results based on the key performance indicators (KPI) such as: Gleason Grade, Patient's Age and Status, but may also help patients to better understand different treatment outcomes, such as side effects during the time, and have an active role in their treatment decisions. Currently, we are extending the results to the real-time interactive dashboard that users (either patients and doctors) can easily explore the data by choosing preferred attribute and data to make better near real-time decisions.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
710
91627
Pin Count Aware Volumetric Error Detection in Arbitrary Microfluidic Bio-Chip
Abstract:
Pin assignment, scheduling, routing and error detection for arbitrary biochemical protocols in Digital Microfluidic Biochip have been reported in this paper. The research work is concentrating on pin assignment for 2 or 3 droplets routing in the arbitrary biochemical protocol, scheduling and routing in m × n biochip. The volumetric error arises due to droplet split in the biochip. The volumetric error detection is also addressed using biochip AND logic gate which is known as microfluidic AND or mAND gate. The algorithm for pin assignment for m × n biochip required m+n-1 numbers of pins. The basic principle of this algorithm is that no same pin will be allowed to be placed in the same column, same row and diagonal and adjacent cells. The same pin should be placed a distance apart such that interference becomes less. A case study also reported in this paper.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
709
91438
Physiological Assessment for Straightforward Symptom Identification (PASSify): An Oral Diagnostic Device for Infants
Abstract:
The international mortality rate for neonates and infants has been declining at a disproportionally low rate when compared to the overall decline in child mortality in recent decades. A significant portion of infant deaths could be prevented with the implementation of low-cost and easy to use physiological monitoring devices, by enabling early identification of symptoms before they progress into life-threatening illnesses. The oral diagnostic device discussed in this paper serves to continuously monitor the key vital signs of body temperature, respiratory rate, heart rate, and oxygen saturation. The device mimics an infant pacifier, designed to be easily tolerated by infants as well as orthodontically inert. The fundamental measurements are gathered via thermistors and a pulse oximeter, each encapsulated in medical-grade silicone and wired internally to a microcontroller chip. The chip then translates the raw measurements into physiological values via an internal algorithm, before outputting the data to a liquid crystal display screen and an Android application. Additionally, a biological sample collection chamber is incorporated into the internal portion of the device. The movement within the oral chamber created by sucking on the pacifier-like device pushes saliva through a small check valve in the distal end, where it is accumulated and stored. The collection chamber can be easily removed, making the sample readily available to be tested for various diseases and analytes. With the vital sign monitoring and sample collection offered by this device, abnormal fluctuations in physiological parameters can be identified and appropriate medical care can be sought. This device enables preventative diagnosis for infants who may otherwise have gone undiagnosed, due to the inaccessibility of healthcare that plagues vast numbers of underprivileged populations.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
708
91433
Plasmonic Biosensor for Early Detection of Environmental DNA (eDNA) Combined with Enzyme Amplification
Abstract:
DNA biosensors popularity has been increasing over the past few years. Traditional analytical techniques tend to require complex steps and expensive equipment however DNA biosensors have the advantage of getting simple, fast and economic. Additionally, the combination of DNA biosensors with nanomaterials offers the opportunity to improve the selectivity, sensitivity and the overall performance of the devices. DNA biosensors are based on oligonucleotides as sensing elements. These oligonucleotides are highly specific to complementary DNA sequences resulting in the hybridization of the strands. DNA biosensors are not only an advantage in the clinical field but also applicable in numerous research areas such as food analysis or environmental control. Zebra Mussels (ZM), Dreissena polymorpha are invasive species responsible for enormous negative impacts on the environment and ecosystems. Generally, the detection of ZM is made when the observation of adult or macroscopic larvae's is made however at this stage is too late to avoid the harmful effects. Therefore, there is a need to develop an analytical tool for the early detection of ZM. Here, we present a portable plasmonic biosensor for the detection of environmental DNA (eDNA) released to the environment from this invasive species. The plasmonic DNA biosensor combines gold nanoparticles, as transducer elements, due to their great optical properties and high sensitivity. The detection strategy is based on the immobilization of a short base pair DNA sequence on the nanoparticles surface followed by specific hybridization in the presence of a complementary target DNA. The hybridization events are tracked by the optical response provided by the nanospheres and their surrounding environment. The identification of the DNA sequences (synthetic target and probes) to detect Zebra mussel were designed by using Geneious software in order to maximize the specificity. Moreover, to increase the optical response enzyme amplification of DNA might be used. The gold nanospheres were synthesized and characterized by UV-visible spectrophotometry and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The obtained nanospheres present the maximum localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) peak position are found to be around 519 nm and a diameter of 17nm. The DNA probes modified with a sulfur group at one end of the sequence were then loaded on the gold nanospheres at different ionic strengths and DNA probe concentrations. The optimal DNA probe loading will be selected based on the stability of the optical signal followed by the hybridization study. Hybridization process leads to either nanoparticle dispersion or aggregation based on the presence or absence of the target DNA. Finally, this detection system will be integrated into an optical sensing platform. Considering that the developed device will be used in the field, it should fulfill the inexpensive and portability requirements. The sensing devices based on specific DNA detection holds great potential and can be exploited for sensing applications in-loco.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
707
91166
A Study of Influence of Freezing on Mechanical Properties of Tendon Fascicles
Abstract:
Tendons are the biological structures, which primary function is to transfer force generated by muscles to the bones. Unfortunately, damages of tendons are also one of the most common injuries of the human musculoskeletal system. For the most severe cases of tendon rupture, such as the tear of calcaneus tendon or anterior cruciate ligament of the knee, a surgical procedure is the only possible way of full recovery. Tendons used as biological grafts are usually subjected to the process of deep freezing and subsequent thawing. This, in particular for multiple freezing/thawing cycles, may result in changes of tendon internal structure causing deterioration of mechanical properties of the tissue. Therefore, studies on the influence of freezing on tendons biomechanics, including internal water content in soft tissue, seems to be greatly needed. An experimental study of the influence of freezing on mechanical properties of the tendon was performed on fascicles samples dissected form bovine flexor tendons. The preparation procedure was performed with the presence of 0.9% saline solution in order to prevent an excessive tissue drying. All prepared samples were subjected to the different number of freezing/thawing cycles. For freezing part of the protocol we used -80°C temperature while for slow thawing we used fridge temperature (4°C) combined with equalizing temperatures in the standard state (25°C). After final thawing, the mechanical properties of each sample was examined using cyclic loading test. Our results may contribute for better understanding of negative effects of soft tissues freezing, resulting from abnormal thermal expansion of water. This also may help to determine the limit of freezing/thawing cycles disqualifying tissue for surgical purposes and thus help optimize tissues storage conditions.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
706
91076
Towards a Biologically Relevant Tumor-on-a-Chip: Multiplex Microfluidic Platform to Study Breast Cancer Drug Response
Abstract:
Microfluidics integrated with 3D cell culture is a powerful technology to mimic cellular environment, and can be used to study cell activities such as proliferation, migration and response to drugs. This technology has gained more attention in cancer studies over the past years, and many organ-on-a-chip systems have been developed to study cancer cell behaviors in an ex-vivo tumor microenvironment. However, there are still some barriers to adoption which include low throughput, complexity in 3D cell culture integration and limitations on non-optical analysis of cells. In this study, a user-friendly microfluidic multi-well plate was developed to mimic the in vivo tumor microenvironment. The microfluidic platform feeds multiple 3D cell culture sites at the same time which enhances the throughput of the system. The platform uses hydrophobic Cassie-Baxter surfaces created by microchannels to enable convenient loading of hydrogel/cell suspensions into the device, while providing barrier free placement of the hydrogel and cells adjacent to the fluidic path. The microchannels support convective flow and diffusion of nutrients to the cells and a removable lid is used to enable further chemical and physiological analysis on the cells. Different breast cancer cell lines were cultured in the device and then monitored to characterize nutrient delivery to the cells as well as cell invasion and proliferation. In addition, the drug response of breast cancer cell lines cultured in the device was compared to the response in xenograft models to the same drugs to analyze relevance of this platform for use in future drug-response studies.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
705
90911
A Pre-Assessment Questionnaire to Identify Healthcare Professionals’ Perception on Information Technology Implementation
Abstract:
Health information technologies promise higher quality, safer care and much more for both patients and professionals. Despite their promise, they are costly to develop and difficult to implement. On the other hand, user acceptance and usage determine the success of implemented information technology in healthcare. This study provides a model to understand health professionals’ perception and expectation of health information technology. Extensive literature review has been conducted to determine the main factors to be measured. A questionnaire has been designed as a measurement model and submitted to the personnel of an in vitro fertilization clinic. The respondents’ degree of agreement according to five-point Likert scale was 72% for convenient access to data and 69.4% for the importance of data security. There was a significant difference in acceptance of electronic data storage for female respondents. Also, other significant differences between professions were obtained.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
704
90711
A 3D Bioprinting System for Engineering Cell-Embedded Hydrogels by Digital Light Processing
Abstract:
Bioprinting has been applied to produce 3D cellular constructs for tissue engineering. Microextrusion printing is the most common used method. However, printing low viscosity bioink is a challenge for this method. Herein, we developed a new 3D printing system to fabricate cell-laden hydrogels via a DLP-based projector. The bioprinter is assembled from affordable equipment including a stepper motor, screw, LED-based DLP projector, open source computer hardware and software. The system can use low viscosity and photo-polymerized bioink to fabricate 3D tissue mimics in a layer-by-layer manner. In this study, we used gelatin methylacrylate (GelMA) as bioink for stem cell encapsulation. In order to reinforce the printed construct, surface modified hydroxyapatite has been added in the bioink. We demonstrated the silanization of hydroxyapatite could improve the crosslinking between the interface of hydroxyapatite and GelMA. The results showed that the incorporation of silanized hydroxyapatite into the bioink had an enhancing effect on the mechanical properties of printed hydrogel, in addition, the hydrogel had low cytotoxicity and promoted the differentiation of embedded human bone marrow stem cells (hBMSCs) and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells. Moreover, this bioprinting system has the ability to generate microchannels inside the engineered tissues to facilitate diffusion of nutrients. We believe this 3D bioprinting system has potential to fabricate various tissues for clinical applications and regenerative medicine in the future.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
703
90649
Study the Effect of Leading-Edge Serration at Owl Wing Feathers on Flow-Induced Noise Generation
Abstract:
During past few decades, being amazed by the excellent silent flight of owl, scientists have been trying to demystify the unique features of its wing feathers. Our present study is dedicated to taking our understanding further on this phenomenon. In this present study, a numerical investigation was performed to analyze how the shape of the leading-edge serration at owl wing feathers effects the flow-induced noise generation. For the analysis, an owl inspired single feather wing model was prepared for both with and without serrations at the leading edge. The serration profiles were taken at different positions of the vane length for a single feather. The broadband noise was studied to quantify the local contribution to the total acoustic power generated by the flow, where the results clearly showed the effect of serrations in reducing the noise generation. It was also clearly visible that the shape of the serration has a very strong influence on noise generation. The frequency spectrum of noise was also analyzed and a strong relation was found between the shape of the serration and the noise generation. It showed that the noise suppression is strongly influenced by the height to length ratio of the serration. With the increase in height to length ratio, the noise suppression is enhanced further.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
702
90640
Finding the Longest Common Subsequence in Normal DNA and Disease Affected Human DNA Using Self Organizing Map
Abstract:
Bioinformatics is an active research area which combines biological matter as well as computer science research. The longest common subsequence (LCSS) is one of the major challenges in various bioinformatics applications. The computation of the LCSS plays a vital role in biomedicine and also it is an essential task in DNA sequence analysis in genetics. It includes wide range of disease diagnosing steps. The objective of this proposed system is to find the longest common subsequence which presents in a normal and various disease affected human DNA sequence using Self Organizing Map (SOM) and LCSS. The human DNA sequence is collected from National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) database. Initially, the human DNA sequence is separated as k-mer using k-mer separation rule. Mean and median values are calculated from each separated k-mer. These calculated values are fed as input to the Self Organizing Map for the purpose of clustering. Then obtained clusters are given to the Longest Common Sub Sequence (LCSS) algorithm for finding common subsequence which presents in every clusters. It returns nx(n-1)/2 subsequence for each cluster where n is number of k-mer in a specific cluster. Experimental outcomes of this proposed system produce the possible number of longest common subsequence of normal and disease affected DNA data. Thus the proposed system will be a good initiative aid for finding disease causing sequence. Finally, performance analysis is carried out for different DNA sequences. The obtained values show that the retrieval of LCSS is done in a shorter time than the existing system.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
701
90342
Preliminary Study of Gold Nanostars/Enhanced Filter for Keratitis Microorganism Raman Fingerprint Analysis
Abstract:
Myopia, ubiquitous symptom that is necessary to correct the eyesight by optical lens struggles many people for their daily life. Recent years, younger people raise interesting on using contact lens because of its convenience and aesthetics. In clinical, the risk of eye infections increases owing to the behavior of incorrectly using contact lens unsupervised cleaning which raising the infection risk of cornea, named ocular keratitis. In order to overcome the identification needs, new detection or analysis method with rapid and more accurate identification for clinical microorganism is importantly needed. In our study, we take advantage of Raman spectroscopy having unique fingerprint for different functional groups as the distinct and fast examination tool on microorganism. As we know, Raman scatting signals are normally too weak for the detection, especially in biological field. Here, we applied special SERS enhancement substrates to generate higher Raman signals. SERS filter we designed in this article that prepared by deposition of silver nanoparticles directly onto cellulose filter surface and suspension nanoparticles - gold nanostars (AuNSs) also be introduced together to achieve better enhancement for lower concentration analyte (i.e., various bacteria). Research targets also focusing on studying the shape effect of synthetic AuNSs, needle-like surface morphology may possible creates more hot-spot for getting higher SERS enhance ability. We utilized new designed SERS technology to distinguish the bacteria from ocular keratitis under strain level, and specific Raman and SERS fingerprint were grouped under pattern recognition process. We reported a new method combined different SERS substrates can be applied for clinical microorganism detection under strain level with simple, rapid preparation and low cost. Our presenting SERS technology not only shows the great potential for clinical bacteria detection but also can be used for environmental pollution and food safety analysis.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
700
90017
Gellan Gum/Gamma-Polyglutamic Acid and Glycerol Composited Membrane for Guiding Bone Regeneration
Abstract:
Periodontal disease, oral cancer relating trauma is the prominent factor devastating bone tissue that is crucial to reestablishing in clinical. As we know, common symptom, osteoporosis, and infection limiting the ability of the bone tissue to recover cause difficulty before implantation therapy. Regeneration of bone tissue is the fundamental therapy before surgical processes. To promote the growth of bone tissue, many commercial products still have sophisticated problems that need to overcome. Regrettably, there is no available material which is apparently preferable for releasing and controlling of loading dosage, or mitigating inflammation. In our study, a hydrogel-based composite membrane has been prepared by using Gellan gum (GG), gamma-polyglutamic acid (γ-PGA) and glycerol with simple sol-gel method. GG is a natural material that is massively adopted in cartilage. Unfortunately, the strength of pure GG film is a manifest weakness especially under simulating body fluidic conditions. We utilize another biocompatible material, γ-PGA as cross-linker which can form tri-dimension structure that enhancing the strength. Our result indicated the strength of pure GG membrane can be obviously improved by cross-linked with γ-PGA (0.5, 0.6, 0.7, 0.8, 0.9, 1.0 w/v%). Besides, blending with glycerol (0, 1.0, 2.0, 3.0 w/v%) can significantly improve membrane toughness that corresponds to practical use. The innovative composited hydrogel made of GG, γ-PGA, and glycerol is attested with neat results including elongation and biocompatibility that take the advantage of extension covering major trauma. Recommendations are made for treatment to build up the foundation of bone tissue that would help patients to escape from the suffering and shorten the amount of time in recovery.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
699
89607
High-Intensity, Short-Duration Electric Pulses Induced Action Potential in Animal Nerves
Abstract:
The use of high-intensity, short-duration electric pulses is a promising development with many biomedical applications. The uses include irreversible electroporation for killing abnormal cells, reversible poration for drug and gene delivery, neuromuscular manipulation, and the shrinkage of tumors, etc. High intensity, short-duration electric pulses result in the creation of high-density, nanometer-sized pores in the cellular membrane. This electroporation amounts to localized modulation of the transverse membrane conductance, and effectively provides a voltage shunt. The electrically controlled changes in the trans-membrane conductivity could be used to affect neural traffic and action potential propagation. A rat was taken as the representative example in this research. The simulation study shows the pathway from the sensorimotor cortex down to the spinal motoneurons, and effector muscles could be reversibly blocked by using high-intensity, short-duration electrical pulses. Also, actual experimental observations were compared against simulation predictions.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
698
88770
Treatment of Full-Thickness Rotator Cuff Tendon Tear Using Umbilical Cord Blood-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells and Polydeoxyribonucleotides in a Rabbit Model
Abstract:
Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate regenerative effects of ultrasound (US)-guided injection with human umbilical cord blood-derived mesenchymal stem cells (UCB-MSCs) and/or polydeoxyribonucleotide (PDRN) injection in a chronic traumatic full-thickness rotator cuff tendon tear (FTRCTT) in a rabbit model. Material and Methods: Rabbits (n = 32) were allocated into 4 groups. After a 5-mm sized FTRCTT just proximal to the insertion site on the subscapularis tendon was created by excision, the wound was immediately covered by silicone tube to prevent natural healing. After 6 weeks, 4 injections (0.2 mL normal saline, G1; 0.2 mL PDRN, G2; 0.2 mL UCB-MSCs, G3; and 0.2 mL UCB-MSCs with 0.2ml PDRN, G4) were injected into FTRCTT under US guidance. We evaluated gross morphologic changes on all rabbits after sacrifice. Masson’s trichrome, anti-type 1 collagen antibody, bromodeoxyuridine, proliferating cell nuclear antigen, vascular endothelial growth factor and platelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule stain were performed to evaluate histological changes. Motion analysis was also performed. Results: The gross morphologic mean tendon tear size in G3 and 4 was significantly smaller than that of G1 and 2 (p < .05). However, there were no significant differences in tendon tear size between G3 and 4. In G4, newly regenerated collagen type 1 fibers, proliferating cells activity, angiogenesis, walking distance, fast walking time, and mean walking speed were greater than in the other three groups on histological examination and motion analysis. Conclusion: Co-injection of UCB-MSCs and PDRN was more effective than UCB-MSCs injection alone in histological and motion analysis in a rabbit model of chronic traumatic FTRCTT. However, there was no significant difference in gross morphologic change of tendon tear between UCB-MSCs with/without PDRN injection. The results of this study regarding the combination of UCB-MSCs and PDRN are worth additional investigations.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
697
88547
Generation of Electro-Encephalography Readiness Potentials by Intention
Abstract:
The readiness potential in brain waves is a brain activity related with an intention whose potential arises even before its conscious intention. This study was carried out in order to understand the generation and mechanism of the readiness potential more. The experiment with two subjects was conducted in two ways following the Oddball task protocol. Firstly, auditory stimuli were randomly presented to the subjects. The subject was allowed to press the keyboard with the right index finger only when the subject heard the target stimulus but not the standard stimulus. Secondly, unlike the first one, the auditory stimuli were randomly presented, and the subjects pressed the keyboard in the same manner, but at the same time with grasping action of the left hand. The readiness potential showed up for both of these experiments. In the first Oddball experiment, the readiness potential was detected only when the target stimulus was presented. However, in the second Oddball experiment with the left hand action of grasping something, the readiness potential was detected at the presentation of for both standard and target stimuli. However, detected readiness potentials with the target stimuli were larger than those of the standard stimuli. We found an interesting phenomenon that the readiness potential was able to be detected even the standard stimulus. This indicates that motor-related readiness potentials can be generated only by the intention to move. These results present a new perspective in psychology and brain engineering since subconscious brain action may be prior to conscious recognition of the intention.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
696
88212
Decoding Kinematic Characteristics of Finger Movement from Electrocorticography Using Classical Methods and Deep Convolutional Neural Networks
Abstract:
Brain-computer interfaces are a growing research field producing many implementations that find use in different fields and are used for research and practical purposes. Despite the popularity of the implementations using non-invasive neuroimaging methods, radical improvement of the state channel bandwidth and, thus, decoding accuracy is only possible by using invasive techniques. Electrocorticography (ECoG) is a minimally invasive neuroimaging method that provides highly informative brain activity signals, effective analysis of which requires the use of machine learning methods that are able to learn representations of complex patterns. Deep learning is a family of machine learning algorithms that allow learning representations of data with multiple levels of abstraction. This study explores the potential of deep learning approaches for ECoG processing, decoding movement intentions and the perception of proprioceptive information. To obtain synchronous recording of kinematic movement characteristics and corresponding electrical brain activity, a series of experiments were carried out, during which subjects performed finger movements at their own pace. Finger movements were recorded with a three-axis accelerometer, while ECoG was synchronously registered from the electrode strips that were implanted over the contralateral sensorimotor cortex. Then, multichannel ECoG signals were used to track finger movement trajectory characterized by accelerometer signal. This process was carried out both causally and non-causally, using different position of the ECoG data segment with respect to the accelerometer data stream. The recorded data was split into training and testing sets, containing continuous non-overlapping fragments of the multichannel ECoG. A deep convolutional neural network was implemented and trained, using 1-second segments of ECoG data from the training dataset as input. To assess the decoding accuracy, correlation coefficient r between the output of the model and the accelerometer readings was computed. After optimization of hyperparameters and training, the deep learning model allowed reasonably accurate causal decoding of finger movement with correlation coefficient r = 0.8. In contrast, the classical Wiener-filter like approach was able to achieve only 0.56 in the causal decoding mode. In the noncausal case, the traditional approach reached the accuracy of r = 0.69, which may be due to the presence of additional proprioceptive information. This result demonstrates that the deep neural network was able to effectively find a representation of the complex top-down information related to the actual movement rather than proprioception. The sensitivity analysis shows physiologically plausible pictures of the extent to which individual features (channel, wavelet subband) are utilized during the decoding procedure. In conclusion, the results of this study have demonstrated that a combination of a minimally invasive neuroimaging technique such as ECoG and advanced machine learning approaches allows decoding motion with high accuracy. Such setup provides means for control of devices with a large number of degrees of freedom as well as exploratory studies of the complex neural processes underlying movement execution.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
695
87956
Model and Neural Control of the Depth of Anesthesia during Surgery
Abstract:
At present, the experimentation of anesthetic drugs on patients requires a regulation protocol, and the response of each patient to several doses of entry drug must be well known. Therefore, the development of pharmacological dose control systems is a promising field of research in anesthesiology. In this paper, it has been developed a non-linear compartmental the pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamical model which describes the anesthesia depth effect in a sufficiently reliable way over a set of patients with the depth effect quantified by the Bi-Spectral Index. Afterwards, an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) predictive controller has been designed based on the depth of anesthesia model so as to keep the patient in the optimum condition while he undergoes surgical treatment. For the purpose of quantifying the efficiency of the neural predictive controller, a classical proportional-integral-derivative controller has also been developed to compare both strategies. Results show the superior performance of predictive neural controller during BiSpectral Index reference tracking.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
694
87853
Measuring the Biomechanical Effects of Worker Skill Level and Joystick Crane Speed on Forestry Harvesting Performance Using a Simulator
Abstract:
The forest industry is a major economic sector of Canada and also one of the most dangerous industries for workers. The use of mechanized mobile forestry harvesting machines has successfully reduced the incidence of injuries in forest workers related to manual labor. However, these machines have also created additional concerns, including a high machine operation learning curve, increased the length of the workday, repetitive strain injury, cognitive load, physical and mental fatigue, and increased postural loads due to sitting in a confined space. It is critical to obtain objective performance data for employers to develop appropriate work practices for this industry, however ergonomic field studies of this industry are lacking mainly due to the difficulties in obtaining comprehensive data while operators are cutting trees in the woods. The purpose of this study was to establish a measurement and experimental protocol to examine the effects of worker skill level and movement training speed (joystick crane speed) on harvesting performance using a forestry simulator. A custom wrist angle measurement device was developed as part of the study to monitor Euler angles during operation of the simulator. The device of the system consisted of two accelerometers, a Bluetooth module, three 3V coin cells, a microcontroller, a voltage regulator and an application software. Harvesting performance and crane data was provided by the simulator software and included tree to frame collisions, crane to tree collisions, boom tip distance, number of trees cut, etc. A pilot study of 3 operators with various skill levels was tested to identify factors that distinguish highly skilled operators from novice or intermediate operators. Dependent variables such as reaction time, math skill, past work experience, training movement speed (e.g. joystick control speeds), harvesting experience level, muscle activity, and wrist biomechanics were measured and analyzed. A 10-channel wireless surface EMG system was used to monitor the amplitude and mean frequency of 10 upper extremity muscles during pre and postperformance on the forestry harvest stimulator. The results of the pilot study showed inconsistent changes in median frequency pre-and postoperation, but there was the increase in the activity of the flexor carpi radialis, anterior deltoid and upper trapezius of both arms. The wrist sensor results indicated that wrist supination and pronation occurred more than flexion and extension with radial-ulnar rotation demonstrating the least movement. Overall, wrist angular motion increased as the crane speed increased from slow to fast. Further data collection is needed and will help industry partners determine those factors that separate skill levels of operators, identify optimal training speeds, and determine the length of training required to bring new operators to an efficient skill level effectively. In addition to effective and employment training programs, results of this work will be used for selective employee recruitment strategies to improve employee retention after training. Further, improved training procedures and knowledge of the physical and mental demands on workers will lead to highly trained and efficient personnel, reduced risk of injury, and optimal work protocols.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
693
87705
Integrating Molecular Approaches to Understand Diatom Assemblages in Marine Environment
Abstract:
Environmental processes acting at multiple spatial scales control marine diatom community structure. However, the contribution of local factors (e.g., temperature, salinity, etc.) in these highly complex systems is poorly understood. We, therefore, investigated the diatom community organization as a function of environmental predictors and determined the relative contribution of various environmental factors on the structure of marine diatoms assemblages in the world’s ocean. The dataset for this study was derived from the Tara Oceans expedition, constituting 46 sampling stations from diverse oceanic provinces. The V9 hypervariable region of 18s rDNA was organized into assemblages based on their distributional co-occurrence. Using Ward’s hierarchical clustering, nine clusters were defined. The number of ribotypes and reads varied within each cluster-three clusters (II, VIII and IX) contained only a few reads whereas two of them (I and IV) were highly abundant. Of the nine clusters, seven can be divided into two categories defined by a positive correlation with phosphate and nitrate and a negative correlation with longitude and, the other by a negative correlation with salinity, temperature, latitude and positive correlation with Lyapunov exponent. All the clusters were found to be remarkably dominant in South Pacific Ocean and can be placed into three classes, namely Southern Ocean-South Pacific Ocean clusters (I, II, V, VIII, IX), South Pacific Ocean clusters (IV and VII), and cosmopolitan clusters (III and VI). Our findings showed that co-occurring ribotypes can be significantly associated into recognizable clusters which exhibit a distinct response to environmental variables. This study, thus, demonstrated distinct behavior of each recognized assemblage displaying a taxonomic and environmental signature.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):
692
87703
Unfolding Global Biodiversity Patterns of Marine Planktonic Diatom Communities across the World's Oceans
Abstract:
Analysis of microbial eukaryotic diversity is fundamental to understanding ecosystems’ structure, biology, and ecology. Diatoms (Stramenopiles, Bacillariophyceae) are one of the most diverse and ecologically prominent groups of phytoplankton. This study was performed to enhance the understanding of global biodiversity patterns and structure of planktonic diatom communities across the world's oceans. We used the metabarcoding data set generated from the biological samples and associated environmental data collected during the Tara Oceans (2009-2013) global circumnavigation covering all major oceanic provinces. A total of ~18 million diatom V9-18S rDNA tags from 126 sampling stations, constituting 631 size-fractionated plankton communities were generated. Using ~250,000 unique diatom metabarcodes, the global diatom distribution and diversity across size classes, genus and ecological niches was assessed. Notably, our analysis revealed: (i) a new estimate of the total number of planktonic diatom species, (ii) a considerable unknown diversity and exceptionally high diversity in the open ocean, and (iii) complex diversity patterns across oceanic provinces. Also, co-occurrence of several ribotypes in locations separated by great geographic distances (equatorial stations) demonstrated a widespread but not ubiquitous distribution. This work provides a comprehensive perspective on diatom distribution and diversity in the world’s oceans and elaborates interconnections between associated theories and underlying drivers. It shows how meta-barcoding approaches can provide a framework to investigate environmental diversity at a global scale, which is deemed as an essential step in answering various ecological research questions. Consequently, this work also provides a reference point to explore how microbial communities will respond to environmental conditions.
Digital Article Identifier (DAI):