ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0295.v1
Subject: Energy And Fuel Technology, Engineering Keywords: biomass; ultimate analysis; near-infrared spectroscopy; partial least squares regression; wood; non-wood; scatter plot analysis
Online: 6 December 2023 (09:45:02 CET)
The ultimate analysis parameters including carbon (C), hydrogen (H), nitrogen (N), and oxygen (O) content in biomass was rarely found to be predicted by nondestructive tests until to date. In this research, we developed partial least squares regression (PLSR) models to predict the ultimate analysis parameters of chip biomass using near infrared (NIR) raw spectra of non-wood and wood samples from fast growing tree and agricultural residue and nine different traditional spectral preprocessing techniques. These techniques include first derivative (sd1), second derivative (sd2), constant offset, standard normal variate (SNV), multiplicative scatter correction (MSC), vector normalization, min-max normalization, mean centering, sd1 + vector normalization, and sd1 + MSC. Additionally, we employed a genetic algorithm (GA), successive projection algorithm (SPA), multi-preprocessing (MP) 5−range, and MP 3−range to develop a PLSR model for rapid prediction. A dataset consisting of 120 chip biomass samples was utilized for model development in which the samples was non-wood samples of 65-67% and wood samples was 33-35%, and the model performance were evaluated and compared. The selection of the optimum performing model was mainly based on criteria such as the coefficient of determination in the prediction set (R2P), root mean square error of the prediction set (RMSEP), and the ratio of prediction to deviation values (RPD). The optimal model for weight percentage (wt.%) of C was obtained using GA−PLSR, yielding R2P, RMSEP, and RPD values of 0.6954, 1.1252 wt.%, and 1.8, respectively. Similarly, for wt.% of O, the most effective model was obtained using the multi-preprocessing PLSR−5 range method with R2P of 0.7150, RMSEP of 1.3088 wt.%, and RPD of 1.9. For wt.% of N, the optimal model was obtained using the MP PLSR−3 range method, resulting in R2P, RMSEP, and RPD values of 0.6073, 0.1008 wt.%, and 1.6, respectively. However, wt.% of H model provided R2P, RMSEP, and RPD values of 0.5162, 0.2322 wt.%, and 1.5, respectively. Notably, the limit of quantification (LOQ) values for C, H, and O were lower than the minimum reference values used during model development, indicating a high level of sensitivity. However, the LOQ for N, exceeded the minimum reference value, implying the samples to be predicted by the model must be in the range of reference range in calibration set. By scatter plot analysis, the effect of combined non-wood and wood spectra of biomass chips on rapid prediction of ultimate analysis parameters using NIR spectroscopy was investigated. To include different species in a model, the species have to be not only in the different values of the constituents to make a wider range for robust model but also they must provide their trend line characteristics in the scatter plot i.e. correlation coefficient (R), slope and intercept (same slope and slope approached to 1 and intercept is same (no gap) and approached zero, high R approached to 1). The effect of the R, slope and intercept to obtain the better optimized model were studied. The results show that the different species affected model performance of each parameter prediction in a different manner and by scatter plot analysis which of these species were affecting the model negatively and how the model could be improved was indicated. This is the first time of the effect is studied by the principle of scatter plot.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202310.0876.v3
Subject: Philosophy, Arts And Humanities Keywords: determinism; incongruent counterparts; simulation; state description; counterfactuals
Online: 6 December 2023 (09:20:28 CET)
This paper proposes a metaphysical framework for distinguishing between human and machine intelligence. By drawing an analogy from Kant’s incongruent counterparts, it posits two identical deterministic worlds -- one comprising a human agent and the other comprising a machine agent. These agents exhibit different types of information processing mechanisms despite their apparent sameness in a causal sense. By postulating the distinctiveness of human over machine intelligence, this paper resolves what it refers to as “the vantage point problem” – namely, how to legitimize a determinist’s assertion of determinism by placing the determinist within the universe.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0345.v1
Subject: Public Health And Health Services, Public Health And Healthcare Keywords: CG and GC, Epstein-Barr virus, Helicobacter pylori, Human Herpes virus.
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:56:58 CET)
Gastric cancer (GC) is a global health concern, the majority of GC are H. pylori inflammation-related cancers. The H. pylori infection as well as bacterial virulence factors are not sufficient in predicting risk development of gastric cancer (GC) among populations with high prevalence of H. pylori infection such as East Asia. Among H. pylori infectious patients in Vietnam, compared to gastritis group, among gastric cancer patients the prevalence of EBV was significantly greater. The coinfection with EBV and CMV was highest in gastric cancer (46,7%) follows by peptic ulcer (16,7%) and gastritis (15.2%). This difference becomes even more evident in the younger group. Therefor EBV showed a certain role in the development of GC in Vietnam, especially in young patients positive for H. pylori.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0348.v1
Subject: Neuroscience And Neurology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: myelin; cognition; oligodendrocytes; OPCs; development; schizophrenia; autism spectrum disorder; brain oscillations
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:56:09 CET)
In vertebrates, oligodendrocytes (OLs) are glial cells of the central nervous system (CNS) responsible for the formation of the myelin sheath that surrounds the axons of neurons. The myelin sheath plays a crucial role in the transmission of neuronal information by promoting the rapid saltatory conduction of action potentials and providing neurons with structural and metabolic support. Saltatory conduction, first described in the peripheral nervous system (PNS), is now generally recognized as a universal evolutionary innovation to respond quickly to the environment: myelin helps us think and act fast. However, the function of myelin in the CNS, particularly in the brain, is not necessarily to act quickly, but rather to act correctly. In this respect, myelin should primarily play a role in synchronizing the different neuronal networks, a synchrony that occurs in the form of oscillations (or rhythms) relevant for specific information processing. Interestingly, myelin has been directly involved in different types of cognitive processes relying on brain oscillations, and myelin plasticity is currently considered to be part of the fundamental mechanisms for memory formation and maintenance. However, despite ample evidence showing the involvement of myelin in cognition and neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by cognitive impairments, the link between myelin, brain oscillations, cognition and disease is not yet fully understood. In this review, we aim to highlight what is known and what remains to be explored to understand the role of myelin in high order brain processes.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0141.v2
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:55:41 CET)
The purpose of this study is to analyze the self-regulated learning and the ability to write scientific papers of students after learning with the Project-Based Digital Science Module (DSM). This research is a mixed methods by analyzing quantitatively and qualitatively. The research instrument used to obtain data is using a product assessment sheet and a self-regulated learning questionnaire. Data analysis uses N-Gain to determine the increase in self-regulated learning scores and student scientific writing skills scores, and uses linear regression analysis to determine the effect of self-regulated learning on student scientific writing skills. The results obtained showed N-Gain score of learning independent is 0,65 and scientific writing ability is 0,94, then significant’s score from linear regression by using SPSS is 0,22 < 0,05. This result showed an increase in self-regulated learning and the ability to write scientific papers of students on each indicator after learning using the Project-Based Digital Science Module (DSM). In addition, based on the results of data analysis, it can be seen that there is an influence of self-regulated learning on the ability to write scientific papers of students after learning using the Project-Based Digital Science Module.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0356.v1
Subject: Pharmacology And Toxicology, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: TR-57; SUM159 TNBC cells; respiratory complexes: mitochondrial membrane potential; FoF1-ATPase; IF1; calcium-regulated mitochondrial ATP-Mg/Pi carrier
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:55:20 CET)
Recent works identified ClpXP, mitochondrial caseinolytic protease, as the only target of imipridones - new class of antitumor agents. Our study of the mechanism of imipridone derivative TR-57 action in SUM159 human breast cancer cells demonstrated mitochondrial fragmentation, degradation of mitochondrial mtDNA and mitochondrial dysfunction, due to inhibition of Complex I and Complex II activity. Complete inhibition of oxidative phosphorylation accom-panied with 90, 94, 88 and 87% decrease in the content of Complex I, II, III and IV proteins, respectively. The content of the FOF1-ATPase subunits decreased sharply by approximately 35% after 24 hours and remained unchanged up to 72 hours of incubation with TR-57. At the same time, a disappearance of the ATPIF1, natural inhibitor of mitochondrial FOF1-ATPase observed after 24 h exposure to TR-57. ATPase inhibitor oligomycin had no effect on the mitochondrial membrane potential in intact SUM159, whereas it caused a 65% decrease in TR-57-treated cells. SUM159 cells incubated with TR57 up to 72 hours retained the level of proteins facilitating the ATP transfer across the mitochondrial membranes: VDAC1 expression was not affected, while expression of ANT-1/2 and APC2 increased by 20% and 40%, respectively. Thus, our results suggest that alt-hough TR-57 treatment lead to complete inhibition of respiratory chain activity of SUM159 cells, hydrolysis of cytoplasmic ATP by reversal activity of FOF1-ATPase supports mitochondrial polarization.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0364.v1
Subject: Cell And Developmental Biology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: Programmed cell death; Apoptosis; Caspases; Caspase inhibitory proteins; Mitochondrial / Intrinsic pathway; Extrinsic Pathway; Necroptosis; Autophagy
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:54:10 CET)
Apoptosis, necroptosis, and autophagy are cellular mechanisms by which cells are programmed to die under a wide range of physiological and developmental stimuli. A multitude of protein mediators of programmed cell death have been identified and apoptosis, necroptosis, and autophagy signals have been found to utilize common pathways elucidating the proteins involved. This narrative review focuses on caspase-dependent and caspase-independent programmed cell death systems. Included studies of caspase-dependent programmed cell death include extrinsic pathway apoptotic mechanisms including phosphatidylserine (PS), FAS (APO-1/CD95), Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF) Receptor type 1 (TNF-R1) and TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand (TRAIL) and intrinsic or mitochondrial pathway such as Cytochrome C, the Bcl-2 family of proteins and Smac/Diablo. The Bcl-2 family has apoptotic mediators Bcl-2-associated X protein (Bax) and Bcl-2 homologous antagonist/killer (Bak), Bcl-2-Interacting Protein BIM (Bim), Bcl-2 agonist of cell death (Bad), Bid, Bcl-2 adenovirus E1B 19kDa-interacting protein 1 NIP3 (Bnip3), BMF, HRK, Noxa and PUMA and anti-apoptotic proteins such as Bcl-2 itself, Mcl-1, Bcl-w, A1, and Bcl-XL. Moreover, caspase-independent programmed cell death pathways include the mitochondrial pathway with the protein mediators Apoptosis Inducing Factor (AIF), and Endonuclease G, the pathways Necroptosis, and Autophagy. Understanding programmed cell death from those reported in this review could shed substantial light on the processes of biological homeostasis. In addition, identifying specific proteins involved in these processes is mandatory to identify molecular biomarkers as well as therapeutic targets. This knowledge could provide the ability to modulate the programmed cell death response and could lead to new therapeutic interventions in a wide range of diseases.
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0328.v1
Subject: Other, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; oncology; genetic variants; NGS; severity; genetic associations; exome
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:52:54 CET)
The COVID-19 pandemic has created unique challenges for people with comorbidities, including hereditary diseases and cancer cancers. Several studies have reported a link between the presence of disease-causing genetic variants and the outcome of the COVID-19 infection. In this study, we used clinical exome sequencing in a cohort of 840 COVID-19 patients to identify pathogenic and likely pathogenic genetic variants present in these individuals. While we did not identify any statistically significant differences in the overall burden of pathogenic variants between different patient groups, we discovered three known pathogenic alleles associated with hereditary cancer syndromes, including a frameshift mutation in MSH6 and two missense mutations in TP53. The patients carrying these mutations presented with different severity of the disease and outcome. Thus, a 58-year old male subject with an MSH6 mutation developed a severe form of COVID-19 that resulted in death, even though the patient had few pre-existing conditions and no evidence of malignant tumors. On the other hand, two female subjects carrying pathogenic TP53 variants successfully recovered from the disease despite suffering from various forms of cancer. Our results highlight the importance of personalized approaches to the diagnosis, management and treatment of COVID-19 in patients with specific genetic mutations. Further studies are needed to elucidate the complex relationship between these mutations and COVID-19.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0342.v1
Subject: Clinical Medicine, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: Nursing; Voice Training; Post-Thyroid Surgery; Vocal Cord Paralysis
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:50:34 CET)
Objective: To assess the recovery of voice in patients with unilateral vocal cord paralysis after thyroid surgery following treatment with nursing intervention combined with voice training. Methods: Thirty patients with unilateral vocal cord paralysis and hoarseness for 6-12 months post-thyroid surgery were selected. They first underwent two weeks of psychological and cognitive intervention, followed by a psychological resilience assessment, and then proceeded with 12 weeks of voice training. This training primarily included muscle relaxation exercises, breathing training, and phonation exercises. A comparative analysis was conducted on the patients' voice parameters before and after the training, including jitter, shimmer, maximum phonation time (MPT), noise to harmonic ratio (NHR), and the Voice Handicap Index (VHI) scores. Results: After psychological and cognitive intervention, scores for optimism, resilience, and self-strength among the 30 patients increased. Post-voice training, reductions were observed in jitter, shimmer, NHR, and VHI scores, the Maximum Phonation Time (MPT) increased compared to pre-training, with the difference being statistically significant (P<0.05). Conclusion: Nursing intervention combined with voice training can effectively improve voice quality in patients with unilateral vocal cord paralysis after thyroid surgery.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0371.v1
Subject: Other, Chemistry And Materials Science Keywords: Rhinella alata; toads; Bufonidae; oocytes; bufadienolides; anti-trypanosomal activity; Trypanosoma cruzi
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:44:31 CET)
Amphibians are widely known as a prolific source of bioactive metabolites. In this work we isolated and characterized compounds with antiparasitic activity from the oocytes of the toad Rhinella alata collected in Panama. Bio-guided isolation and structural elucidation was carried out using chromatographic and spectroscopic techniques. The organic crude extract was subjected to solid phase extraction followed by HPLC purification of the fraction with in vitro activity against Trypanosoma cruzi trypomastigotes. Seven steroids (1-7) of the bufadienolide family were isolated and their structures determined using NMR and MS analyses; of these 19-formyl-dyscinobufotalin (3) is reported as a new natural product. Compounds 1, 3-7, resulted with a good anti-trypanosomal activity profile, among these 16β-hydroxyl-hellebrigenin (1) and bufalin (7) showed significant selectivity for T. cruzi. Furthermore, molecular docking analysis showed compounds 1, 3 and 7 interact through H-bonds with the amino acid residues GLN-19, ASP-158, HIS-159 and TRP-177 from cruzipain, at the catalytic site. Given the lack of therapeutic options to currently treat the American trypanosomiasis, this work can serve as the basis for further studies that aim the development of bufadienolides or their derivatives as drugs against Chagas disease.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0370.v1
Subject: Plant Sciences, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: Centella asiatica; stretch marks; skin repair; striae
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:36:00 CET)
Stretch marks are far from being exclusively appearing on pregnant women and appear whenever the body experience a rapid growth. Into the dermis, collagen fibres are altered associated with a loss of orientation and the elastic network is disrupted leading to a fibrotic organisation. This results to epidermal tearing which produce skin lesions. Centella asiatica is a well-known medicinal plants rich in triterpenic actives molecules and traditionally used to treat wounds and help skin repair. The aim of this study was to evaluate Centella asiatica extract as a natural way to solve stretch marks concern and understand its mechanism of action. We have first evaluated the fibroblast’s proliferation based on scratch assay model and their genes expression by RT-qPCR. At the ex vivo level, elastin fibres were quantified by immunofluorescence. Collagen fibre’s orientation and their occupation of the dermis were analysed after Sirius red staining and specific software analysis. We have proven that Centella asiatica has stimulated fibroblasts proliferation, reduced extracellular matrix degradation and fibrosis. On stretch marked skin explant, Centella asiatica increased the occupation of collagen fibres and elastin production. Based on the mechanisms behind the formation of stretch marks, Centella asiatica restores dermis network by optimising fibres organisation for a visible skin remodelling effect.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0368.v1
Subject: Aquatic Science, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: genetic basis; genomic architecture; disease tolerance; population resilience and climate change
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:34:59 CET)
Diseases pose a significant and pressing concern for the sustainable development of the aquaculture sector, particularly as their impact continues to grow due to climatic shifts such as rising water temperatures. While various approaches, ranging from biosecurity measures to vaccines, have been devised to combat infectious diseases, their efficacy is disease- and species-specific and contingent upon a multitude of factors. The field of genetics and genomics offer effective tools to control and prevent disease outbreaks in aquatic animal species. In this study, we present the key findings from our recent research, focusing on the genetic resistance to three specific diseases: White Spot Syndrome Virus WSSV) in white shrimp, Bacterial Necrotic Pancreatitis (BNP) in striped catfish and skin fluke (a parasitic ailment) in yellowtail kingfish. Our investigations reveal that all three species possess substantial heritable genetic components for disease resistant traits, indicating their potential responsiveness to artificial selection in genetic improvement programs tailored to combat these diseases. Also, we observed a high genetic association between disease traits and survival rates. Through selective breeding aimed at enhancing resistance to these pathogens, we achieved substantial genetic gains, averaging 10% per generation. These selection programs also contributed positively to the overall production performance and productivity of these species. Although the effects of selection on immunological traits or immune responses were not significant in white shrimp, they yielded favourable results in striped catfish. Furthermore, our genomic analyses, including shallow genome sequencing of pedigreed populations, enriched our understanding of the genomic architecture underlying disease resistance traits. These traits are primarily governed by a polygenic nature, with numerous genes or genetic variants, each with small effects. Leveraging a range of advanced statistical methods, from mixed models to machine and deep learning, we developed prediction models that demonstrated moderate to high levels of accuracy in forecasting these disease-related traits. In addition to genomics, our RNA-seq experiments identified several genes that undergo upregulation in response to infection or viral loads within the populations. Preliminary microbiome data, while offering limited predictive accuracy for disease traits in one of our studied species, underscore the potential for combining such data with genome sequence information to enhance predictive power for disease traits in our populations. Lastly, this paper briefly discusses the roles of precision agriculture systems, AI algorithms, and outlines the path for future research to expedite the development of disease-resistant genetic lines tailored to our target species. In conclusion, our study underscores the critical role of genetics and genomics in fortifying the aquaculture sector against the threats posed by diseases, paving the way for more sustainable and resilient aquaculture development.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0366.v1
Subject: Civil Engineering, Engineering Keywords: moving principal component analysis; structural damage detection; moving vehicles
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:34:04 CET)
With the deterioration of the bridge performance and ever-increasing amount of traffic, the bridge safety is becoming a concern for engineering community. A method that can assess the bridge's condition in real-time is urgently needed. The main factors that hinder the bridge condition assessment are the uncertain operational environments. A new moving principal component analysis (MPCA) based method is developed for structural damage detection of bridges in operational environments in this paper. Two main operational environmental factors: the environmental temperature and traffic loads, are studied in the assessment process to verify the robustness and practicality of the proposed method. The numerical and experimental results show that the proposed method is effective and accurate to assess the bridge condition in operational environments.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0285.v1
Subject: Industrial And Manufacturing Engineering, Engineering Keywords: Cold isostatic pressing; carbon block; pressure; isotropic ratio; mechanical property
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:29:45 CET)
In this study, carbon blocks were fabricated using isotropic coke and coal tar pitch as raw materials, with a variation in pressure during cold isostatic pressing (CIP). The CIP pressure was set to 50, 100, 150, and 200 MPa, and the effect of the CIP pressure on the mechanical and electrical properties of the resulting carbon blocks was analyzed. Microstructural observations confirmed that after the kneading, the surface of isotropic coke was covered with the pitch components. Subsequently, after the CIP, granules, which were larger than isotropic coke and the kneaded particles, were observed. The formation of these granules was attributed to the coalescence of kneaded particles under the applied pressing pressure. This granule formation was accompanied by the development of pores, some remaining within the granules, while others were extruded, thereby existing externally. The increase in the applied pressing pressure facilitated the formation of granules, and this microstructural development contributed to enhanced mechanical and electrical properties. At a pressing pressure of 100 MPa, the maximum flexural strength was achieved at 33.3 MPa, and the minimum electrical resistivity was reached at 60.1 μΩm. The higher the pressing pressure, the larger the size of the granules. Pores around the granules tended to connect and grow larger, forming crack-like structures. This microstructural change led to degraded mechanical and electrical properties. The isotropic ratio of the carbon blocks obtained in this study was estimated based on the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE). The results confirmed that all carbon blocks obtained proved to be isotropic. In this study, a specimen type named CIP-100 exhibited the best performance in every aspect as an isotropic carbon block.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0290.v1
Subject: Psychiatry And Mental Health, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: schizophrenia; levo-carnitine; carnitine; mendelian randomization
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:27:18 CET)
This study aims to investigate the causal relationship between Levo-carnitine (LC) and its derivatives and schizophrenia (SZ) using a Two-sample Mendelian randomization (MR) method. Forward MR analysis was conducted using LC and its derivatives as exposure and SZ as the outcome. Candidate data were obtained from the openGWAS server. Instrumental variables (IVs) were identified as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) closely associated with exposure, and were harmonized with the outcome data after removing confounders and outliers. Hence, MR analysis was performed using inverse variance weighting (IVW) as the primary approach, and sensitivity analysis was conducted to assess the reliability and robustness of the MR results. Finally, a reverse MR analysis was carried out using the same analytical procedures as the forward one. The MR results indicate a significant negative causal relationship between isovalery-LC and SZ (P < 0.05), but in no other groups (P>0.05). Additionally, the reverse MR analysis did not identify any causal relationship between SZ and LC related exposures (P>0.05). Sensitivity analyses, including pleiotropy and heterogeneity analysis, did not reveal any potential bias on the MR results (P>0.05). The results implied that elevated levels of isovalery-LC may potentially mitigate the risk of developing SZ, thereby highlighting the prospective therapeutic and preventive implications of isovalery-LC in the clinical management of SZ.Keywords: schizophrenia; levo-carnitine; carnitine; mendelian randomization
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0362.v1
Subject: Atmospheric Science And Meteorology, Environmental And Earth Sciences Keywords: drought; extended rainfall; sub-seasonal predictability; low-level jet; circumglobal teleconnection; EOF; CFS; NARR
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:16:21 CET)
This study leverages the relationships between the Great Plains low-level jet (GP-LLJ) and the circumglobal teleconnection (CGT) to enhance the 30-day rainfall forecast skill in the Northern Great Plains (NGP). The assessment of 30-day simulated precipitation using the Climate Forecast System (CFS) is contrasted with the North American Regional Reanalysis, searching for sources of precipitation predictability associated with extended wet and drought events. We analyze the 30-day sources of precipitation predictability using (1) the characterization of dominant statistical modes of variability of 900-mb winds associated with the GP-LLJ, (2) the large-scale atmospheric patterns based on 200-mb geopotential height (HGT), and (3) the use of GP-LLJ and CGT conditional probability distributions using a continuous correlation threshold approach to identify when and where the forecast of NGP precipitation occurs. Two factors contributing to the predictability of precipitation in the NGP are documented. We found that multi-scale geospatial interactions occur at the daily and sub-seasonal time windows. The CFS reforecast suggests that the ability to forecast sub-seasonal precipitation increases in response to the enhanced simulation of the GP-LLJ and CGT. Finally, the multi-dimensional analysis of covariance reveals that high-precipitation forecasting skill is associated with a better prognostic of GP-LLJ and CGT.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0359.v1
Subject: Oncology And Oncogenics, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: chloroquine; hydroxychloroquine; autophagy; chemotherapy; cultured cancer cells; animal xenografts; clinical trials
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:08:22 CET)
Chloroquine (CQ) and its derivate hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), the compounds with recognized ability to suppress autophagy, have been tested in experimental works and in clinical trials as adjuvant therapy for the treatment of cancers of different origin to increase the efficacy of cytotoxic agents. Such strategy can be effective to overcome the resistance to standard chemotherapy or anti-angiogenic therapy. This review presents the results of combined application of CQ/HCQ with conventional chemotherapy drugs (doxorubicin, paclitaxel, platinum-based compounds, gemcitabine, tyrosine kinases and PI3K/Akt/mTOR inhibitors, and other agents) for the treatment of different malignancies obtained in experiments on cultured cancer cells and on animal xenograft models, with a few examples of clinical trials. The effects of such approach on viability of cancer cells and tumor growth, as well as autophagy-dependent and independent molecular mechanisms underlying cellular responses of cancer cells to CQ/HCQ are summarized. Although the majority of experimental studies in vitro and in vivo have shown that CQ/HCQ can effectively sensitize the cancer cells to cytotoxic agents and increase the potential of chemotherapy, the results of clinical trials are often inconsistent. Although pharmacological suppression of autophagy remains a promising tool for increasing the efficacy of standard chemotherapy, the development of more specific compounds is required.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0361.v1
Subject: Public Health And Health Services, Public Health And Healthcare Keywords: burden of disease; disability-adjusted life year (DALY); disease prevention; epidemiology; health policy; health service; health surveillance; medical research; public health
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:07:09 CET)
Burden of diseases measured as disability-adjusted life years per 100,000 people can be mined from public domain data, when they are made available by population health surveillance systems. This can be analysed to allow insightful comparisons with the national average, and to understand differences in trends between the sexes, age groups, time periods, geographic regions and sub-regions. In this illustrative case study, we have analysed the Scottish burden of disease database to understand what ailed the population of the Grampian region before the COVID-19 pandemic. We have identified selected cancers, ischaemic heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias amongst the highest contributors to the burden; that drug use disorders and colorectal cancer are showing worsening trends and require health promotion and disease prevention measures from ages 15 and 25 respectively, especially in Aberdeen City; and that males are more vulnerable to atrial fibrillation and flutter, diabetes mellitus and oesophageal cancer, while females are to cerebrovascular disease. We demonstrate the usefulness of our analysis and methodology for the wider health system, allowing targeted medical research investments and coordinated response from public health and health service delivery. We also show the need for up-to-date surveillance data, forecasts and evidence on the impact of interventions to be made available widely.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0307.v1
Subject: Analytical Chemistry, Chemistry And Materials Science Keywords: Quaternary ammoniums; Biocides; Cholinesterases; Biosensor; Screen-printed electrodes
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:06:49 CET)
A sensitive and robust electrochemical cholinesterase-based sensor was developed to detect the quaternary ammonium (QAs) biocides most frequently found in agri-food industry wash waters: benzalkonium chloride (BAC) and didecyldimethylamonium chloride (DDAC). To reach the maximum residue limit of 2.8 10-8 M imposed by the European Union (EU), two types of cholinesterases were tested, acetylcholinesterase (AChE, from Drosophila melanogaster) and butyrylcholinesterase (BChE, from horse serum). The sensors were designed by entrapping AChE or BChE on cobalt-phthalocyanine-modified screen-printed carbon electrodes. The limits of detection (LOD) of the resulting biosensors were 3.8 10-8 M for DDAC and 3.2 10-7 M for BAC, using respectively AChE and BChE. A simple solid phase extraction step was used to concentrate the samples before biosensor analysis, allowing the accurate determination of DDAC and BAC in tap water with limits of quantification (LOQ) as low as 1.3 10-9 M and 5.3 10-9 M, respectively. The biosensor was shown to be stable during 3-months storage at 4°C.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0314.v1
Subject: Computer Vision And Graphics, Computer Science And Mathematics Keywords: YOLO; Object tracking and Counting; Pink Bollworm; ROS; UGV; Agricultural Robot
Online: 6 December 2023 (08:01:56 CET)
The agricultural industry places a high priority on crop protection, especially when it comes to protecting cotton crops against pink bollworm infestations. Rapid disease identification is essential for effective crop management at the same time. In order to overcome these difficulties, this study offers a thorough process for utilizing the Robot Operating System (ROS) to deploy an autonomous robot. The robot is intended to identify infestations of pink bollworm in addition to counting and tracking red Disease that impact cotton harvests. Drones are used to check the condition of cotton fields, and the autonomous robot's path planning component is closely related to this process. Large fields are photographed by these drones in multispectral mode, and the robot's course planning technique is done by calculating the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) based on these images. This approach ensures targeted surveillance and intervention, optimizing the use of resources. A customized dataset was created especially for this application to improve the robot's detecting abilities. The dataset was utilized to train a YOLOV8 model, a state-of-the-art object detection architecture. Performance characteristics of the trained model are impressive; it has a mean Average Precision (mAP) of 67.1%, Precision of 67.9%, and Recall of 61.8%. These metrics highlight how well the model works to precisely locate and measure interesting occurrences in the cotton fields. In order to address the particular challenges presented by pink bollworm infestations and crop diseases in the context of cotton cultivation, this research contributes a comprehensive solution for autonomous crop monitoring and protection by seamlessly integrating ROS, drones, NDVI calculations, and a robust detection model.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0323.v1
Subject: Obstetrics And Gynaecology, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: clubfoot; congenital abnormalities; three-dimensional ultrasound; foot malpositions; prenatal diagnosis; ultrasound
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:57:51 CET)
Prenatal diagnosis of clubfoot traditionally relied on two-dimensional ultrasonography. To enhance diagnosis and predict postnatal outcomes, we examined the parameters that differentiate pathological clubfoot using three-dimensional ultrasonography. In our retrospective study, we examined the findings of prenatal ultrasound and the postnatal outcomes of pregnancies with suspected congenital clubfoot between 2018 and 2021. Based on the three-dimensional perspective, we measured the angles of varus, equinus, calcaneopedal block and forefoot adduction and compared the sonographic variables between the postnatal treated and non-treated groups. We evaluated 31 pregnancies (47 feet) with suspected clubfoot using three-dimensional ultrasonography. After delivery, a total of 37 feet (78.7%) underwent treatment involving serial casting only or additional Achilles tenotomy. The treated group showed significantly greater hindfoot varus deviation (60.5° vs. 46.6°, p=0.026) and calcaneopedal block deviation (65.6° vs. 26.6°, p <0.05) compared to the non-treated group. The calcaneopedal block had an area under the curve of 0.98 with a diagnostic threshold of 46.2 degrees (sensitivity of 97%, specificity of 90%, positive predictive value of 97%, and negative predictive value of 90%). During prenatal evaluation of clubfoot using three-dimensional ultrasonography, the calcaneopedal block deviation has the potential to predict postnatal treatment.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0331.v1
Subject: Orthopedics And Sports Medicine, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: Idiopathic Toe Walking; Equinus Gait; Tip Toe Walking; Toe Walking Behavior; Treatment; Narrative Review.
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:56:08 CET)
Background: Idiopathic Toe Walking (ITW) is the persistence of a forefoot strike pattern at initial contact while walking beyond the age of three years, in the absence of other justifiable causes. This review aims to consolidate the current knowledge on the subject and to highlight recent advancements in literature. Methods: We conducted an electronic search in the following databases up to June 2023: Ovid MEDLINE, EBSCO, Embase, CINAHL Plus, and PubMed. The PICO framework was employed to define search terms. Results: Despite considerable methodological heterogeneity among studies, we found a stronger inclination toward investigating etiological and prognostic factors. There is a trend for a higher prevalence in boys with a positive family history. Novel classifications have been proposed to improve differential diagnosis. Among conservative treatment options, there is stronger evidence for gait improvement with the use of serial casting followed by orthoses. Severe cases may benefit from surgical Zone III gastrocsoleus lengthening. Conclusion: Further studies with standardized methodologies are required to clarify questions about the etiology, classification, and treatment of this condition. Nonetheless, there is a higher level of evidence supporting conservative treatments with serial casting and orthoses, as well as gastrocsoleus Zone III surgical lengthening for severe cases in the second decade of life.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0310.v1
Subject: Organic Chemistry, Chemistry And Materials Science Keywords: dimerization; oligomerization; transition metal catalysis; metal hydrides; reaction mechanisms
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:53:48 CET)
Dimers and oligomers of alkenes represent a category of compounds that are in great demand for diverse industrial sectors. Among the developing synthetic methods, the catalysis of alkene dimerization and oligomerization using transition metal salts and complexes is of undoubted interest for practical application. This approach demonstrates substantial potential, offering not only elevated reaction rates but also precise control over the chemo-, regio-, and stereoselectivity of the reactions. In this review, we discuss the data on catalytic systems for alkene dimerization and oligomerization. Our focus lies in the analysis of how the activity and chemoselectivity of these catalytic systems are influenced by various factors, such as the nature of the transition metal, the ligand environment, the activator, and substrate structure. Notably, the review particularly discusses the reaction mechanisms, encompassing metal complex activation, structural and dynamic features, and the reactivity of hydride intermediates, which serve as potential catalytically active centers in alkene dimerization and oligomerization.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0321.v1
Subject: Theoretical Physics, Physical Sciences Keywords: Unified Field Theory, General Relativity, Complex metrics, Einstein
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:49:40 CET)
This paper introduces a Unified Field Theory through the generalization of General Relativity, following the methodology outlined by Einstein for incorporating complex metrics in the pursuit of a comprehensive Unified Field Theory.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0354.v1
Subject: Psychiatry And Mental Health, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: antipsychotic; mortality; schizophrenia; elderly; daily defined dosage
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:45:10 CET)
Patients with schizophrenia had higher mortality risks and the role of antipsychotic medications remained inconclusive. In an aging society, elderly schizophrenia patients warrant increased attention. In this study, we aimed to explore medication dosage associations with mortality in schizophrenia patients, using Taiwan's national healthcare database from 2010 to 2014, with 102,964 patients with schizophrenia, and a subgroup of 6,433 elderly patients, compared to an age- and gender-matched control group. The findings revealed that schizophrenia patients with no antipsychotic exposure had the highest mortality risk as compared to the control sample—with a 3.61 and 3.37-fold risk for overall and cardiovascular mortality respectively in age and gender-adjusted model, followed by high, low, and moderate exposure groups. A similar pattern was observed in elderly schizophrenia patients but high exposure to antipsychotics was associated with the highest risk in both overall and cardiovascular mortality in elderly patients, with a 3.01, and 2.95-fold risk), respectively. In conclusion, the use of antipsychotics is beneficial to patients with schizophrenia, with recommended exposure levels being low to moderate. In elderly patients, high antipsychotic exposure was associated with the highest mortality risk. We should pay more attention to antipsychotic dosage in elderly schizophrenia patients.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0353.v1
Subject: Obstetrics And Gynaecology, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: assisted reproductive treatment; follicular fluid; proteomics; mass spectrometry; apolipoprotein A1; HDL cholesterol; predictive value
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:44:23 CET)
Infertility affects millions worldwide, posing a significant global health challenge. The proteomic analysis of follicular fluid provides a comprehensive view of the complex molecular landscape within ovarian follicles, offering valuable information on the factors influencing oocyte development and on the overall reproductive health. The follicular fluid is derived from the plasma and contains various proteins that can have different roles in oocyte health and infertility and this fluid is a critical microenvironment for the developing oocytes as well. Using HPLC/MS method we investigated the protein composition of the follicular fluid and after classification we did relative quantification of the identified proteins in the pregnant (P) and non-pregnant (NP) groups. Based on the protein-protein interaction analysis ALB and ApoA1 was found to be hub proteins and the quantitative comparison of the P and NP groups resulted significantly lower concentration of ApoA1 and HDL-cholesterol in the P group. As both molecules are involved in the cholesterol transport, we also investigated their role in the development of oocytes and in the prediction of fertility.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0351.v1
Subject: Neuroscience And Neurology, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease; dementia; neurodegeneration; neuroinflammation; neuroimmune; microglia; cytokine
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:41:52 CET)
One of the major obstacles confronting the formulation of a mechanistic understanding for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is its immense complexity – a complexity that traverses the full structural and phenomenological spectrum, including molecular, macromolecular, cellular, neurological and behavioural processes. This complexity is reflected by the equally complex diversity of risk factors associated with AD. However, more than merely mirroring disease complexity, risk factors also provide fundamental insights into the aetiology and pathogenesis of AD as a neurodegenerative disorder since they are central to disease initiation and subsequent propagation. Based on a systematic literature assessment, this review has identified 30 risk factors for AD and then extended the analysis to further identify neuroinflammation as a unifying mechanism present in all 30 risk factors. Although other mechanisms (e.g. vasculopathy) were present in multiple risk factors, dysfunction of the neuroimmune-neuroinflammation axis was uniquely central to all 30 identified risk factors. Though the nature of the neuroinflammatory involvement varied, activation of microglia and the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines was a common pathway shared by all risk factors. This observation provides further evidence for the importance of immunopathic mechanisms in the aetiopathogenesis of AD.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0349.v1
Subject: Toxicology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: inhaled 99mTC-DTPA; lung permeability; smoking
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:40:43 CET)
The lung epithelium regulates gas exchange and is the first line of defense against airborne toxicants and microbial infections. Disruption of the integrity of lung epithelium results in altered permeability and severely impacts normal lung functions. To develop biomarkers of potential harm (BoPH) for assessing adverse health effects of cigarette smoking, we have evaluated lung barrier function. In a single-center, ambulatory, clinical study we measured lung permeability, as the half-life (T1/2) of inhaled 99mTC-DTPA, in 17 subjects consisting of 6 Smokers (SMK), 5 Moist Snuff Consumers (MSC), and 6 Non-Tobacco Consumers (NTC) at three weekly test visits. Smokers, relative to MSC and NTC, exhibited significantly faster clearance of the inhaled probe (shorter T1/2), indicating increased lung permeability. NTC and MSC had comparable clearance times of the inhaled probe (longer T1/2). Least squares regression modeling showed that the variability of the test was minimal and was not significant. Prediction profiling showed that the repeatability of the lung permeability test was robust and was able to differentiate the tobacco product use groups in this study. Thus, altered lung barrier function may serve as a BoPH for assessing the effects of tobacco use.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0316.v1
Subject: Clinical Medicine, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: Omicron; rapid diagnostic test; RT-PCR; RSV; SARS-CoV-2; viral antigens
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:38:00 CET)
To analyze the viral titers of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) at the anterior nasal site (ANS) and nasopharyngeal site (NS), evaluate their virological dynamics, and validate the usefulness of a newly developed two antigen-detecting rapid antigen diagnostic test (Ag-RDT) that simultaneously detects SARS-CoV-2 and RSV using clinical specimens. This study included 195 asymptomatic to severely ill patients. Overall, 668 specimens were collected simultaneously from the ANS and NS. The cycle threshold (Ct) values calculated from real-time polymerase chain reaction were used to analyze temporal changes in viral load and evaluate the sensitivity and specificity of the Ag-RDT. The mean Ct values for SARS-CoV-2-positive, ANS, and NS specimens were 28.8, 28.9, and 28.7, respectively. The mean Ct values for RSV-positive, ANS, and NS specimens were 28.7, 28.8, and 28.6, respectively. SARS-CoV-2 and RSV showed the same trend in viral load, although the viral load of NS was higher than that of ANS. The sensitivity and specificity of the newly developed Ag-RDT were excellent in specimens collected up to 10 days after the onset of SARS-CoV-2 infection and up to 6 days after the onset of RSV infection.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0337.v1
Subject: Artificial Intelligence And Machine Learning, Computer Science And Mathematics Keywords: Calligraphy work authentication; neural networks; attention mechanism
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:34:10 CET)
Calligraphy works have high artistic value, but there is a rampant problem of forgery. Indeed, authentication of traditional calligraphy heavily relies on calligraphers' subjective judgment. Therefore, spurred by the recent development of neural networks, this paper proposes a method for authenticating calligraphy works based on an improved EfficientNet network. Specifically, the developed method utilizes the character box algorithm and the centroid algorithm to extract individual calligraphy characters, which are then augmented and used as the training set for the model. The training process employs CBAM and Self-Attention modules to enhance the attention mechanism of the EfficientNet network. The model is tested on authentic works, imitated works, and works from other calligraphers and is compared with other networks. The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed method effectively achieves the authentication of calligraphy works, and the improved CBAM-EfficientNet network and SA-EfficientNet network achieve better authentication performance.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0344.v1
Subject: Atmospheric Science And Meteorology, Environmental And Earth Sciences Keywords: rainfall and temperature trends; climate change; south australia; southern hemisphere
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:27:36 CET)
In recent decades, there have been significant problems worldwide related to global warming and the intensification of extreme temperature and rainfall events. This research evaluated daily temperature and rainfall indices trends to identify whether warming signals have occurred in South Australia over the past fifty years. Extreme cold, hot, and rainfall events were calculated using climatic data from 37 weather stations. A Mann-Kendall test was used for trend analysis with Sen's estimator. As a result, we determined that for the 1970-2021 period, the maximum and minimum temperatures increased by 1.1 and 0.7 °C, respectively, while precipitation had a negative trend (-52.2 mm/period). Since statistical significance was found in analysing extreme cold and hot events, we find that warming signals have several impacts on South Australia. In the case of rainfall events, we identified a heterogeneous pattern characterised by a reduction in the annual amount, and an increase in extreme rainfall events. The findings enable us to conclude that the area shows signs of global warming that could affect the intensity and magnitude of droughts. This information is essential for continuing with current management strategies to adapt and mitigate the effects of global warming in South Australia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0317.v1
Subject: Electrical And Electronic Engineering, Engineering Keywords: Deep learning; artificial neural networks; convolutional neural layer; activation layer; pooling layer; forward propagation; backpropagation.
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:27:12 CET)
Building deep learning models proposed by third parties can become a simple task when specialized libraries are used. However, a great deal of mystery still surrounds the design of new models or the modification of existing ones. These tasks require in-depth knowledge of the different components or building blocks as well as their dimensions. This information is limited and broken up in different literature. In this article, we collect and explain in-depth the building blocks to design deep learning models, starting from the artificial neuron to the concepts involved in building deep neural networks. Furthermore, the implementation of each building block is exemplified using the Keras library.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0309.v1
Subject: Bioengineering, Engineering Keywords: thermal characterization; jalapeño pepper; aeroponic cultivation; growth curve; multispectral images.
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:24:31 CET)
Jalapeño peppers (Capsicum annuum L.) are an important agricultural product worldwide. Despite its high demand in recent years, there are few studies on its production under adverse conditions caused by environmental phenomena. Crops in protected environments such as aeroponics offer greater control of these phenomena and enable efficient use of resources. However, it is necessary to validate the cultivation technique for which new technologies are being used. One of these is the analysis of images captured in the visible and near and far infrared spectrum which involves using non-invasive techniques in order to characterize the growth of a plant and diagnose if it presents any type of stress. This study presents the characterization of vegetative growth and fruiting of jalapeño pepper plants in an aeroponic system, where the root, leaf development parameters and fruits were measured in four jalapeño pepper crops through images of plants captured in the visible (VIS), near infrared (NIR) and far infrared (IR) spectrums. Four crops of thirty jalapeño pepper plants were sown to obtain a total of one hundred and twenty plants which were characterized in the different phases of growth and fruiting. Each of the four jalapeño pepper crops were monitored for sixty days in an aeroponic system in a greenhouse. The first crop was intended to carry out tests to establish the appropriate fertigation times, the next three crops were grown under favorable conditions. Algorithms were developed in Matlab to obtain, over ten image capture sessions, the morphometric and thermal parameters of the roots (perimeter, area, length and average temperature), plants (perimeter, area, height and average temperature), and fruiting. (yield and number of fruits). The statistical analysis was carried out using the ANOVA and Tukey tests considering a value of p ≤ 0.05. The results obtained indicate that there is no significant difference between the characterizations of the four crops. This statement is also supported by the visual analysis of the growth curves parameters of the four crops. In addition, the temperature inside the aeroponic system was contrasted with the ambient temperature and it was verified that the temperature to which the roots are exposed was in the range of 10°C – 20°C. The thermal analysis determined that a plant that presents water stress and is also exposed to high temperatures has an average leaf temperature of 3.7 to 5 °C above the optimal condition for the plant, while a plant with stress at normal temperatures was 1.3 °C higher than the plant without stress.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0312.v1
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:18:56 CET)
Despite advances in the reliability of sensory devices used by drones, the integrity of information from some devices is still considered an obstacle to ensuring successful flight plans. It is widely known that GNSS can suffer attacks or lose the signal from satellites, which can cause the drone to fail to complete its flight plan. In this context, we propose SiaN-VO, a Siamese network for visual odometry prediction. In our initial studies, this approach proved satisfactory for flights in static conditions (speed and height). Although interesting, these conditions do not reflect real flight conditions. In this sense, we have advanced our studies to propose the SiaN-VO, which fuses data from different sensors to enable displacement predictions to be made in dynamic flight conditions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0335.v1
Subject: Artificial Intelligence And Machine Learning, Computer Science And Mathematics Keywords: Syntactic Analysis; Dependency Grammar; Linguistic Typology
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:18:19 CET)
This paper introduces a novel graph polynomial approach for differentiating tree structures in dependency grammar. Utilizing this polynomial representation, we develop a metric to assess the similarity in syntax. This approach offers a detailed and inclusive analysis of the dependency structures and relationships in sentence construction. We employ this polynomial method to examine sentence structures across various languages in the Parallel Universal Dependencies treebanks. Our analysis includes comparing the syntax of original sentences and their translated counterparts in diverse languages, alongside a comprehensive study of syntactic typologies within these treebanks. Additionally, we explore the application of our methodology in evaluating the syntactic diversity within language corpora.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0339.v1
Subject: Space Science, Physical Sciences Keywords: maximal mass principle; black holes; repulsion; cosmology
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:17:29 CET)
This paper presents one of the approaches to solution of the problem of the repulsion origin in gravity. The approach is based on the property of compactness characteristic for a self-gravitating object in General Relativity. Here we understand compactness as estimation of the upper boundary for mass such an object in a static two--dimensional sphere. Repulsion originates when this boundary is violated. The main hypothesis is formulated in the form of the principle of maximal mass within a two-dimensional static sphere. It is demonstrated that the principle is true for Schwarzschild black holes on absorption of the matter in the process of accretion, both in the classical case and with due regard for quantum-gravitational corrections. The results have been extended to black holes with the Schwarzschild-de Sitter metric in the early Universe. The applicability of the principle suggested is analyzed for the early and for the present Universe.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0338.v1
Subject: Biochemistry And Molecular Biology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: anaerobic toluene degradation; reverse -oxidation; synthetic pathway; transport; CoA ligase; CoA-transferase; benzylsuccinate
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:16:11 CET)
Benzylsuccinate is generated in anaerobic toluene degradation by radical addition of toluene to fumarate and further degraded to benzoyl-CoA by a beta-oxidation pathway. Using metabolic modules for benzoate transport and activation to benzoyl-CoA and the enzymes of benzylsuccinate beta-oxidation, we established an artificial pathway for benzylsuccinate production in Escherichia coli, which is based of its degradation pathway running in reverse. Benzoate is supplied to the medium, but needs to be converted to benzoyl-CoA by an uptake transporter and a benzoate-CoA ligase or CoA-transferase. In contrast, the second substrate succinate is endogenously produced from glucose under anaerobic conditions, and the constructed pathway includes a succinyl-CoA:benzylsuccinate CoA-transferase that activates it to the CoA-thioester. We present first evidence for the feasibility of this pathway and explore product yields under different growth conditions. Compared to aerobic cultures, the product yield increased more than 1000-fold in anaerobic glucose-fermenting cultures and showed further improvement under fumarate-respiring conditions. An important bottleneck to overcome appears to be product excretion, based on much higher recorded intracellular concentrations of benzylsuccinate, compared to those excreted. While no export system is known for benzylsuccinate, we observed an increased product yield after adding an unspecific mechanosensitive channel to the constructed pathway.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0336.v1
Subject: Surgery, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: multidrug-resistant bacteria; pancreaticoduodenectomy; pre-operative biliary stent
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:15:07 CET)
Introduction Infections caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria (MDR) occur more frequently after pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD) compared to other abdominal surgeries, and infective complications are a leading cause of postoperative morbidity following PD. Pre-operative biliary stent (PBS) placement often leads to biliary contamination, which in turn plays a significant role in postoperative infections. The aim of this study is to evaluate the impact of MDR contamination on short-term postoperative outcomes in patients undergoing PD and to examine the relationship between MDR bacteria, PBS, and bile contamination. Methods This is a retrospective study based on a prospectively maintained database comprising 825 consecutive patients who underwent pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD) between January 2010 and December 2020 at our center. All procedures were conducted with a standardized resection by a dedicated group of surgeons in a specialized pancreatic surgery unit, and the patients were managed according to the same perioperative enhanced recovery protocol. Results MDR bacteria were present in 17.5% of bile cultures, exclusively within the stented group. In our multivariate analysis, the development of a major postoperative complication (MPC) was correlated with the presence of MDR bacteria in the bile (OR 1.66, 95% CI: 1.1-2.52; p = 0.02). MDR bacteria were detected early in the surgical drainage in 144 out of 825 patients (12.1%), with 72.2% having a previous biliary stent placement and 27.8% without stents (p < 0.001). In our multivariate analysis, the development of an MPC was associated with the presence of MDR bacteria in the drainage (OR=1.81, 95% CI: 1.21-2.73, p= 0.0042). Conclusions We demonstrated that MDR contamination worsens the short-term outcomes of patients undergoing PD. Specifically, when MDR bacteria are present in both the bile and drainage, there is a statistically significant increase in the incidence of major postoperative complications (MPC). Our data suggest that the majority of MDR surgical site infections stem from biliary contamination resulting from the placement of a pre-operative biliary stent (PBS).
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0334.v1
Subject: Clinical Medicine, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: STIR MRI; CT; Osteoporotic fracture; Spine fracture; Treatment planning; Diagnosis protocol; Surgical intervention; Radiological Assessment; Osteoporosis.
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:14:12 CET)
In response to a threefold increase in osteoporotic vertebral fractures (OVF) at our institution over the past decade and the subsequent development of new fractures within a year in a third of cases, we evaluated the effectiveness of STIR MRI scans in conjunction with CT scans for initial OVF diagnosis. This study, conducted over five months, involved full spine sagittal STIR MRI scans alongside CT scans for patients over 50 with minor injury-related vertebral fractures. The independent assessments by radiologists and neurosurgeons of 64 patients revealed that while CT scans identified 161 fresh fractures, of which only 68 were previously reported, MRI detected 266 fractures, 1.65 times more than CT. CT scans showed single fractures in 27% of patients and multiple fractures in 73%, whereas MRI identified single fractures in 9% and multiple fractures in 91% of patients. Additionally, MRI demonstrated a 1.5-fold increase in adjacent fracture detection. The use of MRI influenced treatment plans in 67% of cases. Given these findings, we advocate for including a STIR MRI of the entire spine alongside CT scans in OVF cases, as it significantly enhances fracture detection and can alter treatment strategies.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0332.v1
Subject: Mechanical Engineering, Engineering Keywords: profile shift coefficient; gear failures; optimal gear operations; bending stress; flash temperature; linear wear; lubricant film thickness; friction loss on tooth profile
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:13:20 CET)
The various methods used to choose the profile shift coefficients, primarily the so-called equalizations, were based on assumed advantages without physical evidence proving them. In this paper a new calculation method is presented for determining profile shift coefficient. The procedure gives the pair of values of the profile shift coefficients, in which case, under the given load, the resulting bending stress will be of the lowest possible value.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0326.v1
Subject: Agricultural Science And Agronomy, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: Climate change; drought stress; wild watermelon; stomatal regulation; stomatal aperture
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:12:22 CET)
Drought-tolerant plants have become a convenient model to study the mechanisms underlying drought tolerance to improve the susceptible domesticated relatives. Various studies have shown that wild watermelon possess superior qualities that aid its survival in harsh environmental conditions. One of the key mechanisms that aids the tolerance of the crop has been noted as its timely stomatal regulation. In this study, the physiological, morphological and molecular stomatal responses of a drought-tolerant (wild watermelon) and four other watermelons genotypes were evaluated under drought stress. The watermelon plants were grown under water deficit (complete withholding of watering) and non-stress treatment. The highest SPAD values were recorded in wild and cooking (50 ± 3) watermelon genotypes and Crimson sweet (27 ± 0.37) had the lowest SPAD values showing the ability of the tolerant genotypes to maintain their system during drought stress. Fluorescence parameters also gave an important clue into the tolerant genotypes with cooking and wild watermelon under drought stress while the domesticated genotypes showed slow response to fluorescence parameters, something that might lead to damage to photosynthesis apparatus. Stomatal opening during drought showed that the wild watermelon limited its opening with the progress of drought as at day 9 it had the lowest opening of 23.1 ± 1.2 µm as compared to other genotypes and most importantly upon re-watering it showed rapid recovery than all the genotypes. And these was also expressed in mRNA quantification of stomatal aperture TFs where wild watermelon recorded 8 fold increase on stomatal closure CLROC3 TFs. And all these mechanisms have been attributed to the tolerance mechanisms of the drought tolerant watermelon genotypes.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0330.v1
Subject: Electrical And Electronic Engineering, Engineering Keywords: integrated optics; microwave photonics; optical microcombs; feedback control
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:09:15 CET)
Feedback control plays a crucial role in improving system accuracy and stability for a variety of scientific and engineering applications. Here, we theoretically and experimentally investigate the implementation of feedback control in microwave photonic (MWP) transversal filter systems based on optical microcomb sources, which offer advantages in achieving highly reconfigurable processing functions without requiring changes to hardware. We propose four different feedback control methods including (1) one-stage spectral power reshaping, (2) one-stage impulse response reshaping, (3) two-stage spectral power reshaping, and (4) two-stage synergic spectral power reshaping and impulse response reshaping. We experimentally implement these feedback control methods and compare their performance. The results show that the feedback control can significantly improve not only the accuracy of comb line shaping as well as temporal signal processing and spectral filtering, but also the system’s long-term stability. Finally, we discuss the current limitations and future prospects for optimizing feedback control in microcomb-based MWP transversal filter systems implemented by both discrete components and integrated chips. Our results provide a comprehensive guide for the implementation of feedback control in microcomb-based MWP filter systems in order to improve their performance for practical applications.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0324.v1
Subject: Psychology, Social Sciences Keywords: subjective immersion; avatar identification; video games; ambient sounds; character sounds; soundscape; audio-visual interaction; game experience; sound design
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:07:48 CET)
Elaborate sound design, including background music, ambient sounds (sounds describing the game world), and character sounds (sounds generated by the character’s actions), plays a pivotal role in modern videogames. However, the influence of these different types of sound on the player experience has not been extensively researched. This study examines the influence of these sound types on immersion, avatar identification, fun and perceived competence. In two experiments, participants played League of Legends in four different sound conditions. The first experiment revealed a non-significant trend in the effect of character sound on avatar identification. Ambient sounds, however, were limited in this experiment because the task restricted participants’ movement across the game map. Consequently, we adapted the task to allow for a wider variety of ambient sounds in the second experiment. Here, a significant impact of character sounds on immersion, avatar identification, and fun, was observed, as well as an interaction effect of character sounds and ambient sounds on fun. Furthermore, we observed a trend, though not statistically significant, suggesting that ambient sounds may influence the player’s sense of flow. These findings underline the distinct effects of different sound types and we discuss implications for the design of sound in video games.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0329.v1
Subject: Cardiac And Cardiovascular Systems, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: hypertension; acute heart failure; congestion; diagnosis; modern therapy
Online: 6 December 2023 (07:06:50 CET)
Although acute heart failure (AHF) is a common disease associated with significant symptoms, morbidity and mortality, the diagnosis, risk stratification and treatment of patients with hypertensive acute heart failure (H-AHF) still remain a challenge in modern medicine. Despite great progress in diagnostic and therapeutic modalities, this disease is still accompanied by a high rate of both in-hospital (from 3.8% to 11%) and one-year mortality (from 20% to 36%). Considering the high rate of re-hospitalization (22% to 30% in the first three months), the treatment of this disease represents a major financial blow to the health system of each country. This disease is characterized by heterogeneity in precipitating factors, clinical presentation, therapeutic modalities and prognosis. Since heart decompensation usually occurs quickly (within a few hours) in patients with H-AHF, establishing a rapid diagnosis is of vital importance. In addition to establishing the diagnosis of heart failure itself, it is necessary to see the underlying cause that led to it, especially if it is de novo heart failure. Given that hypertension is a precipitating factor of AHF and in up to 11% of AHF patients, strict control of arterial blood pressure is necessary until target values are reached in order to prevent the occurrence of H-AHF, which is still accompanied by a high rate of both early and long-term mortality.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202310.0917.v2
Subject: Animal Science, Veterinary Science And Zoology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: African swine fever virus (ASFV); LwCas13a; recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA); lateral flow strip (LFS); visual detection
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:58:45 CET)
African swine fever virus (ASFV) is a large double stranded DNA arbovirus that is highly contagious and seriously endangers the lives of domestic and wild pigs. In the past decade, African swine fever (ASF) has spread in many countries in the Caucasus, Russian Federation, Eastern Europe and Asia, causing significant losses to the pig industry. At present, there is a lack of effective vaccine and treatment for ASF. Therefore, the rapid and accurate detection is crucial for ASF prevention and control. In this study, we have developed a portable lateral flow strip (LFS) detection method mediated by recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA) and DNA enzyme (LwCas13a), which is performed at 37 ℃ and visualized by eyes without the need for complex instruments. This RPA-LwCas13a-LFS is based on the ASFV structural protein p17 gene (D117L), with a detection sensitivity up to 2 gene copies. This method is highly specific and has no cross reactivity to 7 other pig viruses. In the detection of 33 clinical samples, the p17 (D117L) RPA-LwCas13a-LFS had 100% coincidence with conventional quantitative PCR (qPCR). These findings demonstrate the potential of this simple, rapid, sensitive, and specific ASFV detection method for on-site ASFV detection.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0322.v1
Subject: Energy And Fuel Technology, Engineering Keywords: Matlab/Simulink; load demands; microgrid; DER, OPAL-RT; digital twin; energy optimization; Gurobi; sustainable building
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:43:41 CET)
The increased focus on sustainability in response to climate changes has given rise to many new initiatives to meet the rise in building load demand. The concept of distributed energy resources (DER) and optimal control of supply to meet power demands in buildings have resulted in growing interest to adopt microgrids for a precinct or a university campus. In this paper, a model for an actual physical microgrid has been constructed in OPAL-RT for real-time simulation studies. The load demands for SIT@NYP campus and its weather data are collected to serve as input to run on the digital twin model of DERs of the microgrid. The dynamic response of the microgrid model in response to fluctuations in power generation due to intermittent solar PV generation and load demands are examined via real-time simulation studies and compared with the response of the physical assets. It is observed that the simulation results match closely to the performance of the actual physical asset. As such, the developed microgrid model offers plug-and-play capability which will allow power providers to better plan for on-site deployment of renewable energy sources and energy storage to match the expected building energy demand.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0319.v1
Subject: Ecology, Evolution, Behavior And Systematics, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: branching corals; bleaching; mortality; temperature stress; turbidity; density; wave action
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:39:26 CET)
Coral reefs are one of the most productive yet vulnerable ecosystems on Earth. An important step in understanding the functioning of coral communities is studying the environmental impact on the state of reefs. The present study aimed to assess the impacts of the water temperature, precipitation, wave action and population density on the seasonal bleaching, partial and complete mortality of shallow-water branching corals of Pocillopora verrucosa species complex. The present study was conducted at the Dam Bay research station (Nha Trang Bay) from 26 April 2020 to 2 April 2021. Throughout the study the percentage of bleached coral colonies varied from 1 to 41.5% with two peaks, in autumn (October) and spring (April). Rates of the development of partial mortality varied from 0 to 10%, with a pronounced peak in December. At the end of the experiment, the percentage of coral colonies suffering from partial mortality reached 47%. Only 4,5% of experimental colonies died by the end of the study. Analysis revealed that water temperature and partial mortality are the drivers of bleaching, while wave action, temperature and bleaching are the factors with a significant impact on partial mortality. In the present study, the main cause of coral death was the development of algal fouling at the sites of colony lesions, which gradually spread over the entire surface of the colony. We showed also that the impact of individual stress on mortality prevailed over the impact of seasonal bleaching and partial mortality events.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0320.v1
Subject: Analytical Chemistry, Chemistry And Materials Science Keywords: plant raw material; highbush blueberry; phenolic acids; flavonoids; arbutin
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:34:49 CET)
The study covered the leaves of 25 varieties of highbush blueberry Vaccinium corymbosum L. Determinations were performed for phenolic acid (chlorogenic, neochlorogenic, cryptochlorogenic, 3,5-dicaffeoylquinic and 4,5-dicaffeoylquinic acids), flavonoid (catechin, rutin, isoquercetin), arbutin and hydroquinone content. The content of phenolic acids and flavonoids in the test material suggests that highbush blueberry leaves can be a potentially good material for dietary supplement production, although the relatively high arbutin content (exceeding 4% in the case of the Bonus, Chantiklee and Herbert varieties) limits this possibility to herbal medicinal products applied in case of health issues for a limited time, similar to other over-the-counter arbutin products (bearberry Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and lingonberry Vaccinium vitis-idaea leaves).
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0318.v1
Subject: Public Health And Health Services, Public Health And Healthcare Keywords: anti-inflammatory plant flowers; rapeseed honey; multi-floral honey; antioxidant activity; total phenols; flavonoids
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:26:08 CET)
Is it possible that the addition of wild-growing flowers with anti-inflammatory applications can improve the antioxidant properties of rapeseed and multifloral honey? The study objective was a comparative analysis of two honey varieties enriched by flowers of six plant species, based on the content of the antioxidant capacity as well as total flavonoids and phenolic content. Experiments demonstrated that at each level of enrichment there was an improvement in antioxidant properties compared to honey of both varieties without additives, especially in the case of dried flowers. Primula veris L. and Pulmonaria officinalis L. improved the antioxidant properties and phenolic content most effectively in honey at all levels of enrichment. Rapeseed-type honey produces a better matrix for the incorporation of natural plant metabolites into honey. The content of biologically active substances in honey enriched with flowers gives hope for new applications of health-promoting substances contained in wild plants.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0251.v1
Subject: Agricultural Science And Agronomy, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: Microplastics; Biochar; Sugarcane biomass; Microbial community; Red soil
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:15:58 CET)
Microplastics pollution in sugarcane areas of China is severe, and reducing their ecological risks is critical. This study aims to explore the effects and mechanisms of microplastics combined with or without biochar on sugarcane growth, soil biochemical properties in red soil by a potted experiment. The results showed that compared with control (CK), microplastic alone treatments reduced the dry biomass of sugarcane, soil pH and the nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) contents, obviously decreased the observed_OTUs, Chao1 and Shannon indices of soil total bacteria (16S rRNA gene-based bacteria) while increasing them in phoD-harbouring bacteria. Interestingly, microplastics combined with biochar could alleviate the negative effects of microplastic accumulation on sugarcane growth and soil quality. There were significant differences in the bacterial community compositions among different treatments. Compared with CK, all other treatments significantly decreased the relative abundance of Gemmatimonadota while only microplastic combined with biochar treatments significantly increased the abundance of Subgroup_10 for the 16S rRNA gene, and only microplastic alone treatments significantly increased the relative abundance of Streptomyces for the phoD gene. Moreover, the treatments with microplastics combined with biochar increased the relative abundance of Subgroup_10 and Bradyrhizobium while decreased the IMCC26256 and Streptomyces compared with that in the treatment with microplastics alone. Correlation analysis showed that Subgroup_10 and Bradyrhizobium were significantly positively correlated with sugarcane biomass and several soil properties, while IMCC26256 and Streptomyces were just the opposite. Additionally, different treatments also changed the abundance of potential microbial functional genes. Compared to CK, other treatments increased the abundance of aerobic_ammonia_oxidation, denitrification while decreased the abundance of nitrate_respiration, nitrogen_respiration; meanwhile, these four functional genes involved in N cycling processes were obviously higher in treatments with microplastics combined with biochar than in treatments with microplastic alone. In conclusion, microplastics combined with biochar could alleviate the negative effects of microplastic accumulation on sugarcane growth by improve soil nutrients and microbial community structure and function.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0265.v1
Subject: Dietetics And Nutrition, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: Antidiabetic; GLP-1; Ipomoea batatas L. flavonoid; pharmacology
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:15:09 CET)
Ipomoea batatas L. (IBL) has gained significant popularity as a complementary therapy or herbal medicine in the treatment of anti-diabetes. The objective of this review is to examine the mechanism of action of flavonoid compounds found in IBL that can activate GLP-1 as an anti-diabetic agent. The review article refers to PRISMA guidelines. The literature search was conducted using electronic databases such as Crossref, Pubmed, Scopus, and Science Direct. The search query was based on specific keywords, including Ipomoea batatas OR sweet potato AND anti-diabetic OR hypoglycemic. A total of 1055 articles were found, but only 32 articles were selected for further review based on inclusion and exclusion criteria. IBL contains various compounds, including phenolic acid, flavonols, flavanols, flavones, and anthocyanins, which exhibit activity against anti-diabetes. Flavonols, flavonols, and flavones belong to a group of flavonoids that possess the ability to form complexes with AlCl3 and Ca2+. Retention of Ca2+ within intracellular L cells, resulting in the release of GLP-1. Flavonols, flavones, and flavone groups have been found to strongly interact with DPP-IV, which inhibits the degradation of GLP-1. This mechanism effectively prolongs the half-life of GLP-1 in the systemic system, thereby contributing to the anti-diabetic activity of IBL
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0315.v1
Subject: Biology And Biotechnology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: protective; dates fruit; nephrotoxicity; female; albino rats; gentamicin
Online: 6 December 2023 (05:01:39 CET)
Nephrotoxicity is a common adverse effect associated with gentamicin administration. The current study investigated the potential protective effects of dates fruit against Gentamicin-induced renal nephrotoxicity in female albino rats. Date fruit antioxidants were measured using a spectropho-tometer, and GC-MS was performed using a Perkin Elmer Clarus 600 GC and Turbomass mass spectrometer. Thirty experimental animals were assigned at random to one of three Prevention and Treatment subgroups. Gentamicin (GM) administration at a dose of 100mg/kg resulted in renal toxicity, as evidenced by alterations in kidney function tests and histological changes in the proximal convoluted tubules. Date fruit improved kidney function (albumin, total protein, uric acid, urea, creatinine) and tubule histology, according to the findings. The GC-MS analysis reveals the presence of 20 chemicals. Date fruit antioxidants include 14mg/gallic acid total phenolic, 32.22 mg/rutin equivalent total flavonoid, and 1000 ug/ml DPPH free radical scavenging. According to the study, date fruit and Gentamicin performed the best. Date fruit had a significant impact on prevention during Gentamicin treatment.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0311.v1
Subject: Other, Physical Sciences Keywords: soil formation; altitude variability; soil variability; factor analysis; soil mineralogy; soil classification
Online: 6 December 2023 (04:39:37 CET)
The soils of the high-altitude mountains along the East African Rift Valley are poorly understood. Understanding the potential of soils for agriculture, climate change mitigation, and environmental functioning necessitates an understanding of their relationship to soil-forming factors. Therefore, this study focuses on the volcanic soils of Mount Guna. Eighty-five soil profiles, between 3000 and 4120 m a.s.l., were described and sampled along seven topographic transects. The samples were analyzed for physicochemical characteristics using standard methods and classified according to WRB 2022. The clay mineralogy of six profiles was analyzed with X-ray diffraction. The first four-factor axes, which are related to elevation, parent material, climate, and land use were found by factor analysis, explaining more than 60% of the total variation. The clay portions are primarily composed of trioctahedral chlorite, trioctahedral mica (phlogopite or biotite), vermiculite, kaolinite, some quartz, some amorphous silicates (most likely pyroclastic glass), and minor feldspar. The presence of weatherable minerals (biotite, amphibole, feldspars, and so on) suggests that these soils have not been weathered extensively. The dominant Reference Soil Groups found in the study area are Andosols, Phaeozems, Leptosols, Regosols, Cambisols, Luvisols, and Vertisols. As a result, our findings suggest that altitudinal variation, climate, lithology, and their contributions to the variability of soil characteristics and development along the toposequence cannot be separated in this study; more similar studies in other high-elevation/altitude mountains are required. There have been no other studies of high-altitude mountains in East Africa where so many soil profiles have been examined.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0308.v1
Subject: Clinical Medicine, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: older patients; hospital acute care units; sub-intensive care units; clinical challenges; medical complexity; frailty syndrome; frailty diagnosis
Online: 6 December 2023 (04:33:50 CET)
The study aimed to assess the prevalence of the frailty syndrome in older patients hospitalized in the geriatric ward depending on the diagnostic criteria used, the feasibility of particular diagnostic scales in hospitalized patients, and their compatibility. Material and methods: Patients admitted to the Department of Geriatrics of Hospital of the Ministry of the Interior and Administration in Bialystok within eight months were included in the study. Four diagnostic scales were used to identify the frailty syndrome: Fried criteria, 7-point Clinical Frailty Scale (CFS), 40-item Frailty Index (FI), and FRAIL Scale. The compatibility of the scales was determined using Cohen's Kappa statistics. Results: 416 patients (mean age 81.2 ± 6.91 years, 77.4% women) were included in the study. Depending on the scale, the prevalence of frailty syndrome varied from 26.8% ( FRAIL Scale), 52.3% (Clinical Frailty Scale), and 58.1% (Fried criteria) up to 62.9% (Frailty Index). We observed the highest feasibility for CFS (100%), intermediate for Frailty Index (95.2%), FRAIL Scale (89.7%), and the lowest for Fried scale (79.8%). The highest level of agreement was found between the CFS and Fried scale, with 70.2% consistent ratings (Cohen Kappa 0.49). Conclusions: Patients in the geriatric ward are characterized by a high prevalence of frailty, although it differs depending on the criteria. The Frailty Index found the highest prevalence and the lowest in the case of the FRAIL scale. The feasibility of scales and their comparability differed; the most difficult to use in daily practice was the Fried scale, while the Clinical Frailty Scale was determined feasible in all patients. The highest agreement was observed between the Fried criteria and the Clinical Frailty Scale and the lowest between the FRAIL scale and the remaining ones.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0304.v1
Subject: Aging, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: blood derived products; cellular senescence; fibroblast; skin
Online: 6 December 2023 (04:03:43 CET)
Blood-derived products (BP) like citrate-platelet-rich plasma (CPRP) or hyperacute serum (HAS) are known to contain many growth factors. Combined mitogenic and DNA damaging stimuli might lead to increased senescent cell burden and altered senescence-associated secretory pheno-type (SASP). Therefore, the senescent state was extensively tested by γH2AX staining, p21 Q-PCR and western blot, growth curves and senescence associated ß-galactosidase staining. Two main treatments with BP were performed early (immediately after etoposide) and late (after addition-al 11days). Effects of the BP treatment was evaluated by IL-6 and IL-8 measurement as well as collagen (COL1) and p21 mRNA expression. Additionally, XTT assays, cell size measurements, viability assays, and cell number calculations were performed. HAS treated cells in early treat-ment had the lowest observed IL-6 and IL-8. In contrast, there was a clear inflammatory response for IL-8 on HAS and CPRP treated cells in late treatment. For COL1 expression an upregulation in early treatment could be shown, meanwhile cells in the late treatment group remained unaf-fected. In CPRP treated cells, the COL1 expression decreased. All in all, BP treatment seems to have slightly positive effects regarding skin rejuvenation.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0306.v1
Subject: Industrial And Manufacturing Engineering, Engineering Keywords: non-destructive testing; synthetic data; deep learning; automated defect recognition (ADR); digital X-ray radiography
Online: 6 December 2023 (04:00:32 CET)
Industrial radiography is a pivotal non-destructive testing (NDT) method that ensures quality and safety in a wide range of industrial sectors. Conventional human-based approaches, however, are prone to challenges in defect detection accuracy and efficiency, primarily due to the high inspection demand from manufacturing industries with high production throughput. To solve this challenge, numerous computer-based alternatives have been developed, including Auto-mated Defect Recognition (ADR) using deep learning algorithms. At the core of training, these algorithms demand large volumes of data that should be representative of real-world cases. However, the availability of digital X-ray radiography data for open research is limited by non-disclosure contractual terms in the industry. This study presents a pipeline that is capable of modeling synthetic images based on statistical information acquired from X-ray intensity distribution from real digital X-ray radiography images. Through meticulous analysis of the intensity distribution in digital X-ray images, the unique statistical patterns associated with the exposure conditions used during image acquisition, type of component, thickness variations, beam divergence, anode heel effect, etc., are extracted. The realized synthetic images were utilized to train deep learning models, yielding an impressive model performance with mean intersection over union (IoU) of 0.93, and mean dice coefficient of 0.96, on real unseen digital X-ray radiography images. This methodology is scalable and adaptable, making it suitable for diverse industrial applications.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0305.v1
Subject: Other, Engineering Keywords: riverbed deformation; numerical modeling; channel; flow, structure; two-dimensional equation; hydraulically heterogeneous Soils
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:56:00 CET)
A mathematical model that comprehensively captures the real behavior of riverbed deformation, encompassing all pertinent effects, is developed. The underwater slope reformation process, with the generatrix aligned along the flow velocity in the model, is considered. A numerical model is introduced to calculate the flow involving a deformable bottom, and the model's validation is established through rigorous analysis of experimental findings. The research firmly confirms the suitability of the proposed mathematical and numerical model for describing deformations in uneven and unsteady river flows, including the movement of dredging slots and channel quarries. The model's minimal equation count and reliance on empirical constants demonstrate the model's efficiency. The model's predictions align strongly with experimental data, although optimal values of empirical coefficients vary slightly across different experiments. Hence, there is a call for further investigation to derive more universally applicable closure relationships for the model. The importance of validating the model with reliable field data and its potential extension to accommodate hydraulically diverse soils is emphasized. Such an extension is feasible due to the concentration transfer equation, enabling independent calculations for particle fractions of varying sizes as long as the total particle concentration in the stream remains within reasonable limits. This dedicated research contributes significantly to understanding riverbed deformations and advancing accurate modeling and management of riverine environments.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0296.v1
Subject: Animal Science, Veterinary Science And Zoology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: lipopolysaccharide challenge; glutamine; liver inflammatory; protein synthesis; protein degradation
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:47:21 CET)
The aim of our present study was to investigate the effects of Gln supplementation on liver inflammatory responses and protein synthesis and degradation in muscle of LPS-challenged broilers. A total of 120 1d-old male broilers (Arbor Acres Plus) were randomly arranged in a 2 × 2 factorial design with five replicates per treatment and six broilers per replicate, containing two main factors: immune challenge (injected with LPS in a dose of 0 or 500 µg/kg of body weight) and dietary treatments (supplemented with 1.22% alanine or 1% Gln). After feeding with alanine or Gln diet for 15 days, broilers were respectively administrated with LPS or saline injection at 16 and 21 d. The results showed that Gln supplementation significantly reversed the adverse effects of LPS administration on growth performance, as evidenced as the increased ADFI and ADG, as well as the lowered F/G. Furthermore, Gln supplementation alleviated the increased mRNA expression of interleukin-6, interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α in liver induced by LPS. Moreover, the increased activities of aspartate aminotransferase, combined with the decreased expression of glutaminase in muscle, were observed by Gln addition. In addition, in comparison with saline treatment, LPS challenge altered signaling molecules mRNA expressions associated with protein synthesis and degradation. However, Gln supplementation reversed the negative effects on protein synthesis and degradation in muscle of LPS-challenged broilers. Taken together, Gln supplementation had benefit effects on improving growth performance, alleviating inflammatory responses, promoting protein synthesis and inhibiting protein degradation of LPS-challenged broilers.
CONCEPT PAPER | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0116.v2
Subject: Artificial Intelligence And Machine Learning, Computer Science And Mathematics Keywords: image processing; keyframes; indexing; metadata
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:43:44 CET)
Video lectures are becoming more popular and in demand as online classroom teaching is becoming more prevalent. Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), such as NPTEL, have been creating high-quality educational content that is freely accessible to students online. A large number of colleges across the country are now using NPTEL videos in their classrooms. So more video lectures are being recorded, maintained, and uploaded. These videos generally contain information about that video before the lecture begins. We generally observe that these educational videos have metadata containing five to six attributes: Institute Name, Publisher Name, Department Name, Professor Name, Subject Name, and Topic Name. It would be easy to maintain these videos if we could organize them according to their categories. The indexing of these videos based on this information is beneficial for students all around the world to efficiently utilise these videos. In this project, we are trying to get the metadata information mentioned above from the video lectures.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0299.v1
Subject: Agricultural Science And Agronomy, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: wheat; Al toxicity; Mn toxicity; transcriptomics; nicotianamine; cell wall; commonality and specificity
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:42:45 CET)
Aluminum (Al) and manganese (Mn) toxicity are the top two constraints to crop production in acid soil. Crops have evolved common and specific mechanisms to tolerate the two stresses. In the present study, the responses (toxicity and tolerance) of wheat near-isogenic lines (ET8 and ES8) and their parents (Carazinho and Egret) to Al and Mn were compared by determining physiolog-ical parameters and transcriptome profiling of roots. The results showed that: (1) Carazinho and ET8 exhibited dual tolerance to Al and Mn as compared with Egret and ES8, indicated by higher relative root elongation and SPAD; (2) After entering into roots, Al was mainly distributed in the root and fixed in the cell wall, while Mn was mainly distributed in the cell sap and then trans-ported to leaves. Both Al and Mn stresses decreased the contents of Ca, Mg, and Zn; Mn stress al-so inhibited the accumulation of Fe, while Al showed an opposite effect; (3) Transcriptomic analy-sis identified 5581 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) under Al stress and 4165 DEGs under Mn stress. Among these, 2774 DEGs were regulated by both Al and Mn stresses, while 2280 and 1957 DEGs were exclusively regulated by Al and Mn stress, respectively. GO and KEGG analyses indi-cated that cell wall metabolism responds exclusively to Al, while nicotianamine synthesis exclu-sively responds to Mn. Pathways such as signaling, phenylpropanoid metabolism, and metal ion transport showed commonality and specificity to Al and Mn. TFs, such as MYB, WRKY, and AP2 families, were also regulated by Al and Mn, and WGCNA identified PODP7, VATB2, and ABCC3 as the hub genes for Al tolerance and NAS for Mn tolerance. The identified genes and pathways can be used as targets for pyramiding genes and breeding multi-tolerant varieties.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0303.v1
Subject: Neuroscience And Neurology, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: Parkinson's disease; neurogenesis; exosomes; stem cell-derived exosomes; non-niche cells
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:41:11 CET)
Exosomes, a subset of extracellular vesicles, have emerged as pivotal mediators of intercellular communication, revolutionizing our comprehension of cellular interactions. Their diverse cargo, comprising proteins, nucleic acids, and bioactive molecules, plays a crucial role in various physiological and pathological processes. In the intricate landscape of adult neurogenesis, exosomes wield significant influence, actively participating in the generation of new neurons within the adult mammalian brain. Originating predominantly from non-niche cells, these vesicles contribute substantially to the regulation of neuroinflammation, thereby impacting neurogenesis and offering therapeutic promise for neurological disorders. In the specific context of Parkinson's disease (PD), exosomes assume a multifaceted role, prominently implicated in the propagation of α-synuclein oligomers and the orchestration of neuroinflammation. Stem cell-derived exosomes present themselves as promising therapeutic agents, capable of reshaping the microenvironment, repairing neuronal damage, and mitigating apoptosis. The ongoing exploration of exosomes continues to unravel intricate biological processes, paving the way for innovative medical interventions and treatments, particularly within the challenging landscape of neurodegenerative diseases such as PD. The comprehensive understanding of exosomal functions holds the potential to advance our therapeutic approaches, offering new avenues for intervention and treatment strategies in the realm of neurodegenerative disorders.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0302.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: Eukaryotes; ONT; read correction; gene detection; protein annotation
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:32:36 CET)
Background: Eukaryotes whole-genome sequencing is crucial for species identification, gene detection and protein-annotation. Oxford Nanopore sequencing serves as an affordable and rapid platform for sequencing eukaryotes, however the relatively higher error rates require computational and bioinformatic efforts to produce more accurate genome assemblies. Here, we evaluated the effect of read correction tools on eukaryotes genome completeness, gene detection and protein-annotation. Methods: Reads generated by ONT of four eukaryotes, C. albicans, C. gattii, S. cerevisiae, and P. falciparum, were assembled using minimap2 and underwent three rounds of read correction using flye, medaka and racon. The generates consensus FASTA files were compared for total length (bp), genome completeness, gene detection, and protein-annotation by QUAST, BUSCO, BRAKER1 and InterProScan, respectively. Results: genome completeness was dependent on assembly method rather than read correction tool, however, medaka performed better than flye and racon. Racon significantly performed better than flye and medaka in gene detection, while both racon and medaka significantly performed better than flye in protein-annotation. Conclusion: We show that three rounds of read correction significantly affects gene detection and protein-annotation which are dependent on assembly quality in preference to assembly completeness.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0301.v1
Subject: Remote Sensing, Environmental And Earth Sciences Keywords: land surface temperature; WVS-based LST method; ZY1-02E IRS
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:21:10 CET)
The role of land surface temperature (LST) is of utmost importance in multiple academic disciplines such as climatology, hydrology, ecology, and meteorology. Until to now, many methods have been proposed to estimate LST from satellite thermal infrared data. The Thermal Infrared Sensor (IRS) on the Chinese ZY1-02E satellite is a pivotal instrument employed for gathering thermal infrared (TIR) data of land surfaces. The objective of this research is to evaluate the feasibility of a single-channel approach based on water vapor scaling (WVS) for deriving LST from ZY1-02E IRS data because of its wide spectrum range, i.e., 7~12μm, affected strongly by both atmospheric water vapor and ozone. Three study areas, namely Baotou, Heihe River Basin, and Yantai-sea sites, were selected as validation sites to evaluate the LST inversion accuracy. This evaluation was also conducted by cross-comparison between the retrieved LST and MODIS LST product. The results revealed that the WVS-based method exhibited an average bias of 0.63K and an RMSE of 1.62K compared to the in-situ LSTs. The WVS-based method demonstrated reasonable accuracy through cross-validation with the MODIS LST product, with an average bias of 0.77K and RMSE of 2.0K. These findings provide that the WVS-based method is effective to estimate LST from ZY1-02E IRS data.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0298.v1
Subject: Architecture, Building And Construction, Engineering Keywords: alkali activation; geopolymers; glass waste; recycling
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:19:49 CET)
The recycling of common soda-lime glass (SLG) is far from being complete, since the material may contain small polymeric, metallic and ceramic contaminations. This has a negative impact on the quality of new glass articles prepared via re-melting. Alternatively, the full reuse of contaminated cullets could be achieved by low-temperature consolidation into geopolymer-like materials. SLG powders, used either as received or pre-washed in acid solution, were added to a sodium aluminate solution at the room temperature for 3 h, under low-speed mechanical stirring. Microporous semi-crystalline monoliths were formed by the casting of suspensions in plastic molds and cured at 75°C overnight. The monoliths featured hydrosodalite as the main crystalline phase for as received SLG and LTA zeolite in the case of pre-washed SLG. The mechanical properties compared well with those of cementitious materials. Moreover, by addition of coarse glass particles as fillers, the methodology successfully yielded Venetian terrazzo-like samples, which could lead to significant material and energy savings in their manufacture. The proposed approach could also be extended to other difficult-to-reuse glass formulations and provide attractive and versatile up-cycled materials.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0297.v1
Subject: Horticulture, Biology And Life Sciences Keywords: ATG8; ATG4; autophagy; Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense tropical race 4; plant disease resistance
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:17:36 CET)
Banana is one of the most important fruits in the world due to its status as a major food source for more than 400 million people. Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense tropical race 4 (Foc TR4) causes substantial losses of banana crops every year, and molecular host resistance mechanisms are currently unknown. We here performed a genome-wide analysis of the autophagy related protein 8 (ATG8) family in a wild banana species. The banana genome was found to contain 10 MaATG8 genes. Four MaATG8s formed a gene cluster in the distal part of chromosome 4. Phylogenetic analysis of ATG8 families in banana, Arabidopsis thaliana, Citrus, rice, and ginger revealed five major phylogenetic clades shared by all of these plant species, demonstrating evolutionary conservation of the MaATG8 families. The transcriptomic analysis of plants infected with Foc TR4 showed that almost all of the MaATG8 genes were more highly induced in resistant cultivars than in susceptible cultivars. Finally, MaATG8F was found to interact with MaATG4B in vitro (with yeast two-hybrid assays), and MaATG8F and MaATG4B all positively regulated banana resistance to Foc TR4. Our study provides novel insights into the structure, distribution, evolution, and expression of the MaATG8 family in bananas. Furthermore, the discovery of interactions between MaATG8F and MaATG4 could facilitate future researches of disease resistance genes for genetic improvement of bananas.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0293.v1
Subject: Theoretical Physics, Physical Sciences Keywords: casimir; superconductor; fluxon; Abrikosov lattice, vortex
Online: 6 December 2023 (03:16:22 CET)
We investigate the influence of the Abrikosov vortex lattice on the Casimir force in a setup constituted by high-temperature superconductors subject to an external magnetic field. The Abrikosov lattice is a property of type II superconductors in which normal and superconducting carriers coexist and these latter define a periodic pattern with squared symmetry. We find that the optical properties determined by spatial redistribution of the superconducting order parameter induce Casimir forces with a periodic structure whose minimal strengths coincide with the vortex cores.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202310.0498.v2
Subject: Pollution, Environmental And Earth Sciences Keywords: natural radioactivity; water; sediment; environmental implications; north africa
Online: 6 December 2023 (02:54:16 CET)
Natural radioactivity of 238U, 232Th and 40K for liquid and solid samples collected from Sidi Salem dam (Tunisia) and Aïn Dalia dam (Algeria) were measured using TERRA detector of rays (gam-ma, beta, and alpha), Atomic adsorption and Gamma-ray spectrometry were used to analyze the levels of radionuclides and toxic heavy metals, respectively. Toxic heavy metals (Fe, Bb, Zn, Ni, Cu, Cr and Cd) and associated health risks in surface water and sediment of dams have been in-vestigated in this present study. The radioactivity mean rates in the water samples were 1.72±0.01, 0.068±0.01 and 94.6±1.04 Bql-1 for 238U, 232Th and 40K respectively (Tunisia dam) and were 1.9± 0.24, 0.09±0.01 and 131.43±1.03 Bql-1 for 238U, 232Th and 40K respectively (Algeria dam). The 238U, 232Th and 40K radioactivity mean concentration measured in the sediment samples were 2.67±0.01, 0.18±0.012 and 197.87±2.01 Bqkg-1 respectively (Tunisian dam) and were 4.34±0.05, 0.27±0.05 and 287.61±3.34 Bqkg-1 respectively (Algeria dam). The activity concentration of 40K was higher than that of 238U and 232Th for the water and sediment samples. The mean activity concen-trations follow the order 40K > 238U > 232Th. The cumulative impact can be a serious immediate radiological health burden on the ecosystem, environment and people's health in this study area and can be transposable to any other similar region. The good knowledge of monitoring quality and quantity for the transboundary water resources and the international collaborations are es-sential to safeguard human health (women’s breasts cancer, thyroid cancer, neurological im-pact…), and avoid the conflicts, especially during these climatic upheavals of drought.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0291.v1
Subject: Other, Environmental And Earth Sciences Keywords: calcretes; dolocrete; Konya closed basin; Konya fault zone
Online: 6 December 2023 (02:52:02 CET)
The Konya Closed Basin (Quaternary, Central Turkey) is a graben basin which expands toward the east-west and it is controlled by faults on three sides: The Konya fault zone in the west, the Divanlar fault zone in the east and the Karaömerler fault zone in the north. Calcretes developed in relation to fault systems in the Konya region are concentrated in areas where faults cut Quaternary aged terrestrial deposits. In this study, it is aimed to elucidate the deposition conditions, geochemistry and age (with ESR method) of the calcareous deposits associated with faults in the Konya Closed Basin. Calcretes in the region existing as coatings, dust, nodules and layers are in the form of dolocrete and clayey calcrete. Dolocretes were deposited in the Quaternary terrestrial sediments on the ophiolitic rocks and geochemical data point to an ultramafic source. Bacterial community, clay, quartz minerals and calcite cement are observed in the calcretes formed in areas with limestone basement. According to the results of ICP-MS analysis of samples taken from Konya calcretes, the %MgO contents are between 0.99 and 7.7; CaO%: between 34.71 and 50.71; %SiO2 between 3.22 and 20.59. %MgO in dolocretes are between 11.65 and 21.01; %CaO between 8.44 and 29.57; %SiO2 values between 4.48 and 9.17 The δ13C and δ18O isotope values of calcretes range from -3.87 to -7.62 and from -3.62 to -7.45 respectfully. Average δ13C values indicate that calcrete formation took place under pedogenic condition or in shallow groundwater. The calcretes deposited in 3 locations around the city of Konya (on the Konya fault zone) were dated by using the Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) method and ages between 217.47 and 389.85 ky were obtained. The calcrete samples taken from the fault planes (dip-slip normal fault bordering the Upper Cretaceous Ophiolitic Mélange and the Quaternary Karahüyük Formation) gave a relative age for faulting as being 292.86 ky. This first dating study conducted in the Konya Fault Zone has provided important clues to elucidate the formation history of Konya Closed Basin (KCB) and the paleo-seismological past of Konya.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0292.v1
Subject: Transportation Science And Technology, Engineering Keywords: vulnerable road user safety; vehicle-to-VRU communication; pedestrian collision warning
Online: 6 December 2023 (02:44:11 CET)
Pedestrians, bicyclists, scooterists are Vulnerable Road Users (VRU) in traffic accidents. The number of fatalities and injuries in traffic accidents involving vulnerable road users has been steadily increasing in the last two decades in the U.S. even though road vehicles now have perception sensors like camera to detect risk and issue collision warnings or apply emergency braking. Perception sensors like camera are highly affected by lighting and weather conditions. Camera, radar and lidar cannot detect vulnerable road users in partially occluded and occluded situations. This paper proposes the use of Vehicle-to-VRU communication to inform nearby vehicles of VRUs having trajectories with potential collision risk. An Android smartphone app with low energy Bluetooth (BLE) advertising is developed and used for this communication. The same app is also used to collect motion data of VRUs for training. VRU motion data is smoothed using a Kalman filter and an LSTM neural network is used for future motion prediction. This information is used in an algorithm comparing Time-To-collision-Zone (TTZ) for the vehicle and VRU and issue a driver warning with different severity levels. The warning severity level is based on analysis of real data from a smart intersection for close vehicle and VRU interactions. The resulting driver warning system is demonstrated using proof-of-concept experiments. The method can easily be extended to a VRU collision mitigation system.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0289.v1
Subject: Remote Sensing, Environmental And Earth Sciences Keywords: vegetation variation; MODIS; climate factors; human activities; Beijing
Online: 6 December 2023 (01:57:54 CET)
As the most important city in China, Beijing has experienced an economic soar, large-scale population growth and eco-environment changes in recent 20 years.Evaluating climate and human-induced vegetation changes could reveal the relationship of vegetation-climate-human activities and provide important insights for the coordination of economic growth and environmental protection. Based on a long-term MODIS vegetation index dataset, meteorological data (temperature, precipitation) and impervious surface data, the Theil-Sen regression and the Mann-Kendall method are used to estimate vegetation change trend in this study and the residual analysis is utilized to distinguish the impacts of climate factors and human activities on vegetation restoration and degradation from 2000 to 2019 in Beijing. Our results show that the increasing vegetation areas account for 80.2\% of Beijing. The restoration of vegetation is concentrated in the urban core area and mountainous area, while the degradation of vegetation is mainly concentrated in the suburbs. In recent years, the vegetation in most mountainous areas has changed from restoration to significant restoration, indicating that the growth of mountain vegetation has continued to restore. We also found that in the process of urban expansion, vegetation browning occurred in 53.1\% of the urban built-up area, while vegetation greening occurred in the rest part. We concluded that precipitation is the main climatic factor affecting the growth of vegetation in Beijing mountain areas through correlation analysis. Human activities have significantly promoted the vegetation growing in the northern mountainous area thanks to the establishment of environmental protection areas. The negative correlation between vegetation and the impervious surface tends to gradually expand outwards, which is consistent with the trend of urban expansion. The positive correlation region remains stable, but the positive correlation is gradually enhanced. The response of vegetation to urbanization demonstrated a high degree of spatial heterogeneity. These findings indicated that human activities played an increasingly important role in influencing vegetation changes in Beijing.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0288.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy And Rehabilitation Keywords: algometry; facial pain; temporomandibular disorders; muscle tenderness; depression; anxiety; masseter muscle
Online: 5 December 2023 (20:34:55 CET)
The correlation between pain and emotional status in subjects with temporomandibular disorders (TMD) is known. Regardless of that up to date these findings were seldomly confronted with the objective assessment of pain using a digital algometer on the mastication muscles. The aim of the study was to investigate the relationship between the emotional status, chronic pain pain pressure threshold (PPT). 38 subjects were screened for the existence of temporomandibular disorders with the 3Q/TMD questionnaire, for chronic pain (GCPS) and emotional status (PHQ-9 and GAD-7). The results were confronted with the PPT measured with the digital algometer on the masseter muscles. Each subject was examined three times (after 1 month and after 7 months from the initial exami-nation session. Chronic pain scores (GCPS) were found to be higher in the TMD group in all three examination sessions (p<0,05). The pain, depression and anxiety levels were higher in females de-spite the existence of TMD, but only some were significant.A correlation between chronic orofacial pain scores and PPT was found in 2 out of 3 examination sessions. The PPT scores on the masseter muscles did not correlate with the emotional state in the study population.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0287.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Metals, Alloys And Metallurgy Keywords: case hardening; surface treatment; diffusion; cassava; steel microstructure; microhardness
Online: 5 December 2023 (17:04:45 CET)
As part of a comprehensive research on eco-friendly processing techniques, the influence of heat treatment environment on the case-hardening of AISI 1018 steel using pulverized cassava leaf was studied. The process was carried out at two different temperatures (850˚C and 950˚C) and under three environmental conditions: (Process 1) the control experiment, was carried out in air only, (Process 2) the medium comprised of pulverized cassava leaves, and (Process 3) the combination of pulverized cassava leaves plus barium carbonate (BaCO3) as an energizer (CBC mixture). Vickers microhardness testing and scanning electron microscopy were used to evaluate the effect of processing environment on case hardening of the steel. As expected, regardless of the processing temperature, Process 1 resulted in little or no hardening of the steel surface. However, notable case hardening occurred when steel specimens were subjected to either Process 2 or Process 3. Furthermore, the inclusion of barium carbonate in Process 3 significantly enhanced the case hardening effectiveness of the cassava leaf as it pertains to rate and maximum hardness achieved. Maximum enhancement was observed at 950oC. After 1 hour, the increase in hardness were 160% and 280%, for Process 2 and Process 3, respectively. Upon increasing the processing time to 5 hours, the increase in hardness due to Process 2 was raised to 254%, while that of Process 3 remained at approximately 280%. Diffusivity of AISI 1018 was calculated using the microhardness data. Diffusivity was highest in Process 2 samples with values of 1.568 x 10-9 m2/s at 850°C and 1.893 x 10-9 m2/s at 950 °C.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0286.v1
Subject: Engineering, Civil Engineering Keywords: stainless steel; standard duplex steel; lean duplex steel; post-fire strength; post-fire ductility; retention factors; recovery factors
Online: 5 December 2023 (17:03:44 CET)
Experimental quantification of retention factors related to post-fire strength as well as post-fire ductility of intentionally selected stainless steel grades applied in construction is the objective of research presented here. These steel grades are characterized by a two-phase austenitic-ferritic microstructure of the duplex type. In this context two mutually corresponding chromium-nickel-molybdenum steel grades have been subjected to analysis, namely X2CrNiMoN22-5-3 steel belonging to the standard duplex group (DSS 22% Cr) and X2CrMnNiN21-5-1 steel belonging to the lean duplex group (LDSS). The similarities and differences in the mechanical properties exhibited by these steel grades after effective cooling, following more or less prolonged simulated fire action conforming to several development scenarios, have been identified and indicated. The resistance of given steel grade to permanent structural changes induced by the heating program proved to be the critical factor determining these properties and resulting in many cases in increased susceptibility to brittle fracture.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0281.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Neuroscience And Neurology Keywords: metabolomics; amino acids; diagnostics; neonatal asphyxia; liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry; newborn screening
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:31:23 CET)
Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) is one of the most common causes of childhood disability. Hypothermic therapy is currently the only approved neuroprotective approach. However, early diagnosis of HIE can be challenging, especially in the first hours after birth when the decision to treat with hypothermic therapy is critical. Differentiating HIE from other neonatal conditions, such as sepsis, further complicates the diagnosis. This study investigated the utility of a metabolomic-based approach using the NeoBase 2 MSMS kit to diagnose HIE using dry blood stains in a Rice-Vannucci model of HIE in rats. We evaluated the diagnostic accuracy of this method between 3 and 6 hours after the onset of HIE, including in the context of systemic inflammation and concomitant hypothermic therapy. Discriminant analysis revealed several metabolite patterns associated with HIE. A logistic regression model using glycine levels achieved high diagnostic accuracy with areas under the curve (AUC) of 0.94 at 3 hours and 0.96 at 6 hours after the onset of HIE. In addition, orthogonal partial least squares discriminant analysis, which included five metabolites, achieved 100% sensitivity and 80% specificity within 3 hours of HIE. These results highlight the significant potential of the NeoBase 2 MSMS kit for the early diagnosis of HIE and could improve patient management and outcomes in this serious illness.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0284.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Oceanography Keywords: Data assimilation; machine learning; deep neural network; ensemble Kalman filter; strongly coupled data assimilation
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:30:20 CET)
This paper introduces a novel ensemble adjustment Kalman filter (EAKF) that integrates a machine-learning approach. The approach employs nonlinear variable relationships established by a deep neural network (DNN) during the analysis stage of the EAKF. This process nonlinearly projects observation increments into the state variable space. The newly developed DNN-EAKF algorithm can be applied to coupled data assimilation using coupled ocean-atmosphere models. It enhances cross-component updates in strongly coupled data assimilation (SCDA) by diminishing errors in estimating cross-component error covariance arising from insufficient ensemble members, thereby improving the SCDA analysis. This paper employs a conceptual model to conduct twin experiments, validating the DNN-EAKF’s capability to utilize cross-component observation information in SCDA effectively. The approach is anticipated to offer insights for future methodological integrations of machine learning and data assimilation and provide methods for SCDA applications in coupled general circulation models.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0277.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Immunology And Microbiology Keywords: influenza vaccine; seasonal influenza; pandemic influenza; adjuvant; subunit vaccine; SARS-CoV-2; betulin
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:29:12 CET)
Influenza is well-known to have a considerable influence on healthcare system, therefore, vaccination plays a significant role in dealing with severe consequences. Close attention is paid to the development of tetravalent adjuvanted vaccines, containing antigens of two influenza A subtypes (H1N1, H3N2) and two influenza B subtypes (Victoria, Yamagata) to increase the effectiveness of influenza prevention. In this work we present the results of pre-clinical study of innovative subunit tetravalent candidate influenza vaccine, with addition of betulin as adjuvant, TetraFluBet. The study was conducted using female BALB/c mice, male and female mongrel rats and guinea pigs. TetraFluBet and commercially available vaccines were injected intraperitoneally twice in a 14-day interval after intranasal infection with 5LD50 and 10LD50. Chronic toxicity was assessed by immunohistochemistry of extracted organs and by hematological and biochemical blood parameters. Protectivity and immunogenicity were evaluated using hemagglutination inhibition and microneutralization with MDCK assays. Chronic toxicity study did not reveal any side effects of candidate TetraFluBet vaccine on both rats and guinea pigs. One vaccination dose of TetraFluBet provided 100% protectivity against all 4 influenza subtypes and significantly increased neutralizing antibody activity in response to immunization of influenza subtypes. Pre-clinical candidate vaccine TetraFluBet confirmed its safety along with specific activity, showed high immunogenicity and can be recommended for further clinical studies.
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0283.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Anesthesiology And Pain Medicine Keywords: Ventilation, pulmonary; Lung Injury; Personalized ventilation; Hypoxia; Pulmonary Diffusing Capacity; Intensive care; Pneumonia; Stenotrophomonas maltophilia
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:24:52 CET)
Chest trauma is one of the most serious and difficult injuries, with various complications that can lead to ventilation - perfusion (V/Q) mismatch and systemic hypoxia. We are presenting a case of 53 – year - old male with no comorbidities or chronic therapy, who was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit due to severe respiratory failure after chest trauma. He developed right - sided pneumothorax and then thoracic drain was placed. On admission, the patient was hemodynamically unstable and tachypneic. The patient was intubated and mechanically ventilated, febrile (38.9°C) and unconscious. A lung CT showed massive non-ventilated areas predominantly in the right lung. He was ventilated with PEEP of 10 cmH2O with a FiO2 of 0.6 – 0.8. Empirical broad-spectrum antimicrobial therapy was immediately initiated. Both high FiO2 and moderate PEEP were maintained and adjusted according to the current blood gas values and oxygen saturation. After Stenotrophomonas maltophilia was identified and treated with sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim his general condition gradually improved, and he was weaned from mechanical ventilation. In conclusion, both ventilatory and antibiotic therapy were needed to improve oxygenation and outcome of the patient with pneumonia due to the resistant S. maltophilia with V/Q mismatch.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0279.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Tourism, Leisure, Sport And Hospitality Keywords: festival sustainability; destination familiarity; product familiarity; image; perceived value; satisfaction; loyalty intentions; visitor involvement
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:22:51 CET)
As governments in various countries and regions issue tourism-friendly policies in the post-pandemic period, the voices for tourism consumption recovery and innovative transformation have attracted great attention. Many scholars, experts and industry professionals in the field of festivals are actively exploring efficient solutions for festival marketing and sustainability. It is worth rethinking tourists’ consumption psychology and perceived image toward exiting festival products as well as the antecedents that affect festival loyalty. The Qingdao International Beer Festival, as one of the most influential festivals in China, was selected as the research case for this study. The main goal of this study was to investigate festival consumption promotion mechanism by proposing a conceptual framework in which the associations from destination familiarity and product familiarity to loyal intentions (re-patronage and recommendation) were examined, with mediators of overall festival image, perceived value and overall satisfaction. Furthermore, the moderating role of visitor involvement in the proposed framework was also adequately demonstrated. The research findings are expected to provide a significant reference for the recovery and competitiveness improvement of the entire festival industry.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0276.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Medicinal Chemistry Keywords: thiazole; structure-activity relationship; antimicrobial; heterocycles; hybrid compounds
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:21:09 CET)
Antimicrobial resistance is an increasing problem for the global public health. One of the strategies to combat this issue is the synthesis of novel antimicrobials through rational drug design based on extensive structure-activity relationship studies. The thiazole nucleus is a prominent feature in the structure of many authorized antimicrobials, being clubbed with different heterocycles. The purpose of this review is to study the structure-activity relationship in antimicrobial thiazoles clubbed with various heterocycles reported in the literature between 2017 and 2022, in order to offer an overview of the last years in terms of antimicrobial research and provide a helpful instrument for future research in the field.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0278.v1
Subject: Business, Economics And Management, Business And Management Keywords: Sustainable space tourism; economic development; environmental protection; education intervention; Chinese residents
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:19:38 CET)
Space tourism began in 2001 and became popular in 2021 because of commercial operations. With the development of space technology and commercialization, like re-launchable rockets to travel to space in recent years, it has gradually entered the era of space. However, the space industry causes massive emissions, inducing some opposition to its development. It is essential to investigate the attitude of residents toward space tourism and balance the pros and cons of sustainability. Quantitative analysis was adapted to test two models based on duality theory. The data were obtained from 284 samples from various regions of China and analyzed using the partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM). The results show that the two-factor model of economic development conflicted with environmental protection. However, study two indicates that educational interventions can facilitate sustainable space tourism because they mediate the relationship between economic and environmental factors.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0268.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Environmental Science Keywords: Appalachia; Coal mining; conductivity; reclamation; vegetation change; water quality
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:10:59 CET)
: Kentucky is one of the largest coal producing states and surface coal mining has led to changes in natural land cover, soil loss, and water quality. This study explored relationships between actively mined and reclaimed areas and vegetation change and water quality parameters. The study site evaluated 58 watersheds with Landsat-derived variables (reclamation age, mining percentage, reclaimed forest percentage, and reclaimed woods percentage) as well as topographic variables (such as elevation, slope, drainage density, and infiltration). Water samples were collected in spring (n=9), summer (n=14), and fall (n=58) 2017 to study changes in water quality variables (SO42-, alkalinity, conductivity, Ca2+, Mg2+, Mn2+, Al3+, and Fe2+,Fe3+) in response to changes in land cover. Pearson correlation analyses indicated conductivity has strong to very strong relationships with other variables of water quality variables related to coal mining (except Al3+, Fe2+,Fe3+, Mn2+, elevation, slope, and drainage density) and land cover variables. In addition, separate multivariate regression analyses were performed with conductivity values based on samples collected in the fall. First, conductivity response to mining percentage, reclamation age and topographic variables were examined (adjusted R2=0.818, p < 0.01). Next, vegetation cover change parameters were added to the same model, which yielded slightly improved R2 (adjusted R2 = 0.826, p < 0.01). Finally, reclamation age and mining percentage were used to explain the quantity of reclaimed forested areas as a percentage of watersheds. The model was significant (p < 0.01) with an adjusted R2 value of 0.641. Results suggest that the quantity (area as a percentage) of reclaimed forests may be a predictor of mining percentage and reclamation age. This study indicated that conductivity is a predictable water quality indicator that is highly associated with Coal Mine Related Stream Chemistry in areas where agriculture and urban development are limited. These findings may help the scientific community and key state and federal agencies improve their understanding of water quality attributes in watersheds affected by coal mining as well as refining land reclamation practices.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0233.v1
Subject: Engineering, Chemical Engineering Keywords: H2S adsorption; 13X molecular sieve; adsorption capacity; ion exchange; silver modification
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:10:02 CET)
The removal of H2S from natural gas and other gases such as biogas, refinery gases, and coal gas is required because H2S is toxic and corrosive, even in traces. Zeolites are widely used in the removal of H2S from the above-mentioned gases. In this work, we prepared an Ag-exchanged 13X molecular sieve by using different concentrations of AgNO3 to increase its adsorption properties. XRD, SEM, and BET techniques were used to characterize samples. When compared to unmodified 13X, the adsorption capacity of AgII-13X increased by about 50 times. The results of this study suggest that the silver-modified 13X molecular sieve is highly effective at extracting H2S from natural gas.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0254.v1
Subject: Engineering, Chemical Engineering Keywords: Anaerobic digestion (AD); cross-flow; greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions; harvesting; Membrane photobioreactor (MPBR); microalgae; ultrafiltration (UF); water resource recovery facility (WRRF).
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:09:12 CET)
A cross-flow ultrafiltration harvesting system of a pre-concentrated microalgae culture was tested in an innovative anaerobic-based WRRF. The microalgae culture was cultivated in a membrane photobioreactor fed with the effluent from an anaerobic membrane bioreactor treating sewage. These harvested microalgae biomass was then anaerobically co-digested with primary and secondary sludge from the water line. Depending on the needs of this anaerobic co-digestion, the filtration harvesting process was evaluated intermittently over a period of 212 days for different operating conditions, mainly the total amount of microalgae biomass harvested and the desired final total solids concentration (up to 15.9 g·L1 with an average of 9.7 g·L1). Concentration ratios of 15-27 were obtained with average transmembrane fluxes ranged from 5 to 28 L·m2·h1. Regarding membrane cleaning, both backflushing and chemical cleaning resulted in transmembrane flux recoveries that were, on average, 21% higher than those achieved with backflushing alone. The carbon footprint assessment shows promising results as the GHG emissions associated with the cross-flow ultrafiltration harvesting process could be less than the emissions savings associated with the energy recovered from the biogas production from the anaerobic valorisation of the harvested microalgae.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0270.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Pharmacy Keywords: Ocimum basilicum; antimaicrobaial; antiviral; antioxidant; anti-inflammatory
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:05:25 CET)
Since ancient times, various scientists and doctors have utilized different herbs to heal diseases. Due to the rise in drug resistance and the negative effects of chemosynthetic drugs, researchers and the general public around the world have become more interested in medicinal herbs and plant metabolites/extracts. This is due to its non-toxicity and several health benefits when used to treat diseases in clinical and medical settings. Ocimum basilicum is one such plant, possessing a wide range of bioactive phytochemicals including alkaloids, phenolics, flavonoids, tannins, saponins, reducing sugars, cardiac glycosides, steroids and glycosides, as well as complex pharmacological activities including anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antibacterial, antioxidant, wound healing and antiviral properties. The results of many studies on Ocimum basilicum plant extracts are collected and presented in this review. The plant extracts have an excellent potential to be used as medicinal raw materials and exhibit an extensive variety of therapeutic capacities, including antibacterial, antioxidant, wound healing, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, and antiviral properties.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0258.v1
Subject: Engineering, Industrial And Manufacturing Engineering Keywords: Bearing Fault Classification; Load Variation; Wavelet Singular Energy (WSE); Machinery Fault Prevention Technology (MFPT) Dataset; Continuous Wavelet Transform (CWT); Load Dynamics; Customised Load Adaptive Framework (CLAF).
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:02:56 CET)
This research presents a novel Customised Load Adaptive Framework (CLAF) for fault classifica-tion in Induction Motors (IMs), utilizing the Machinery Fault Prevention Technology (MFPT) Bearing Dataset. CLAF represents a pioneering approach that extends traditional fault classification methodologies by accounting for load variations and dataset customization. Through a meticulous two-phase process, it unveils load-dependent fault subclasses that have not been readily identified in traditional approaches. Additionally, new classes are created to accommodate the dataset's unique characteristics. Phase 1 involves the exploration of load-dependent patterns in time and frequency domain features using one-way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) ranking and validation via bagged tree classifiers. In Phase 2, CLAF is applied to identify mild, moderate, and severe load-dependent fault subclasses through optimal Continuous Wavelet Transform (CWT) selection through Wavelet Singular Entropy (WSE) and CWT energy analysis. The results are compelling, with a 96.3% classification accuracy achieved when employing a wide neural network to classify proposed load-dependent fault subclasses. This underscores the practical value of CLAF in en-hancing fault diagnosis in IMs and its future potential in advancing IM condition monitoring.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0257.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Plant Sciences Keywords: TRF analysis; ITS; Physcomitrium; Ceratodon; Marchantia; Sphagnum; dioecious
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:01:12 CET)
The ends of linear chromosomes of most eukaryotes consist of protein-bound DNA arrays called telomeres, which play essential roles in protecting genome integrity. Despite general evolutionary conservation in function, telomeric DNA is known to drastically vary in length and sequence between different eukaryotic lineages. Bryophytes are a group of early diverging land plants that include mosses, liverworts, and hornworts. This group of ancient land plants recently emerged as a new model for important discoveries in genomics and evolutionary biology, as well as for understanding plant adaptations to a terrestrial lifestyle. We measured telomere length in different ecotypes of model Bryophyte species, including Physcomitrium patens, Marchantia polymorpha, Ceratodon purpureus, and in Sphagnum isolates. Our data indicate that all analyzed moss and liverwort genotypes have relatively short telomeres. Furthermore, all analyzed ecotypes and isolates of model mosses and liverworts display evidence of substantial natural variation in telomere length. Interestingly, telomere length also differs between male and female strains of the dioecious liverwort M. polymorpha and dioecious moss C. purpureus. Given that Bryophytes are extraordinarily well-adapted to different ecological niches from polar to tropical environments, our data will contribute to understanding the impact of natural telomere length variation on evolutionary adaptations in this ancient land plant lineage.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0255.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Endocrinology And Metabolism Keywords: COVID-19 Pandemic, Diabetes, DSMQ, Self-management, Saudi patients with diabetes
Online: 5 December 2023 (15:00:18 CET)
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted healthcare worldwide, potentially impacting disease management. This cross-sectional study assessed the influence of COVID-19 on diabetes self-management in 341 Saudis with type 2 diabetes using the Diabetes Self-Management Questionnaire (DSMQ). The DSMQ contains 16 items across 4 domains assessing glucose management, dietary control, physical activity, and healthcare use. Three additional items measured the perceived overall impact of COVID-19. Total DSMQ scores were significantly higher in patients aged >60 years versus younger groups. Scores were significantly lower in patients diagnosed for 1-5 years versus longer durations. Patients on insulin had higher glucose management subscores than oral medication users. Overall, DSMQ scores were higher than the pre-pandemic Saudi population and Turkish post-pandemic findings. DSMQ results suggest that while COVID-19 negatively impacted some self-management domains, Saudi patients upheld relatively good diabetes control during the pandemic. Further research is warranted on specific barriers to optimize diabetes care during public health crises.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0256.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Organic Chemistry Keywords: Novichok; AChE; DFT; binding affinity
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:59:21 CET)
The in silico studies were performed in order to assess the binding affinity of selected organophosphorus compounds towards the acetylcholinesterase enzyme (AChE). Quantum mechanical calculations, molecular docking and molecular dynamics (MD) with molecular mechanics Generalized-Born surface area (MM/GBSA) were applied to assess quantitatively differences between the binding energies of acetylcholine (ACh; the natural agonist of AChE) and neurotoxic, synthetic correlatives (so-called “Novichoks”, and selected compounds from the G- and V-series). Several additional quantitative descriptors like root mean square fluctuation (RMSF) and the solvent accessible surface area (SASA) were briefly discussed to give – to the best of our knowledge – the first quantitative in silico description of AChE – Novichok non-covalent binding process and thus facilitate the search for an efficient and effective treatment for Novichok intoxication and in a broader sense - intoxication with other warfare nerve agents as well.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0243.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Public Health And Health Services Keywords: Co-infections; COVID-19 fatality; molecular mimicry; pathogens
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:58:21 CET)
The SARS-CoV-2 have caused a devastating pandemic of all times in the recent human history. However, there is a serious paucity in high quality data on aggravating factors and mechanisms of co-infection. This study aimed to identify the trending patterns of bacterial co-infections and types and associated outcomes in three phases of the pandemic. Using quality hospital data, we have investigated the SARS-CoV-2 fatality rates, profiles, and types of bacterial co-infections before, during, and after COVID-19 vaccinations. Out of 389 isolates used in different aspects, 298 was examined before and during the pandemic (n=149 before, n=149 during), death rates were 32% during compared to only 7.4% before pandemic with significant association (P value = 0.000000075). Death rate was 34% in co-infected (n = 170) compared to non-co-infected patients (n = 128) indicating a highly significant value (P value = 0.00000000000088). However, analysis of patients without other respiratory problems (n=28) indicated that among the remaining 270 patients, death was 30% in co-infected patients (n=150) and only 0.8% in non-coinfected (n=120) with high significant P value= 0.00000000076. The trending patterns of co-infections before, during, and after vaccinations showed a significant decline in Staphylococcus aureus with concomitant peaks in Gram-negatives in totals of (n= 149 before/n= 149 during): Klebsiella pneumonia (n = 11/49 before/during; E. coli n=10/24, A. baumannii n=8/25, and Ps. Aeruginosa n= 5/16, and S. aureus 13/1. Nevertheless, in post vaccination phase, (n= 91) gender-specific co-infections were examined for potential differences in susceptibility. Methicillin resistant S. aureus (MRSA) dominated both genders followed by E. coli in males and females with the latter gender showing higher rates of isolations in both species. Klebsiella pneumoniae declined to third place mostly in male patients. The drastic decline in K. pneumoniae and Gram-negatives post-vaccination strongly imply a potential co-protection in vaccines. Future analysis would gain more insights into molecular mimicry.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0282.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Insect Science Keywords: Asymmetric genitalia; Phylogeny; Prokletije Mts.; Taxonomy; Zoogeography
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:57:48 CET)
The new genus and the new edaphic species, Prokletijella montana gen. n., sp. n., from the Prokletije mountains in Montenegro is described and illustrated. This is the first genus in Leptodirini with an asymmetric median lobe of the aedeagus. The phylogenetic relationship with the genus Adelopsella Jeannel, 1908 is discussed. The genus Adelopsella is redescribed to be accurately compared with Prokletijella. The occurrence of asymmetric genitalia in Leptodirini is discussed in relation with the occurrence of such asymmetry in males and females in other tribes of Cholevinae. The geographic distribution of the two genera is discussed in connexion with their phylogenetic relationship and mapped. The synonymy of the two subspecies A. bosnica bosnica and A. bosnica jezerensis Jeannel, 1911 is confirmed.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0246.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Surgery Keywords: robotic surgery; laparoscopy; cholecystectomy; colectomy; hysterectomy; nephrectomy; prostatectomy
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:57:28 CET)
Background: Robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery robot-assisted surgical system has gained significant popularity over open and laparoscopic interventions. However, given its high costs, it remains unclear what clinical advantages robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery offers over conventional laparoscopic surgery. Objective: This umbrella review aims to synthesize and compare the clinical outcomes of robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery versus conventional laparoscopic surgery for five surgical procedures. Inclusion criteria: All systematic reviews and meta-analyses published in the past five years that compared the clinical outcomes of conventional laparoscopic surgery and robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery for cholecystectomy, colectomy, hysterectomy, nephrectomy and/or prostatectomy were included. Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted in PubMed and Scopus. The quality of all included reviews was assessed with the AMSTAR 2 quality assessment tool. Each review’s study characteristics (and a list of primary sources) were extracted, along with the quantitative and qualitative data for the following ten clinical outcomes: blood loss, rate of conversion to open surgery, hospitalization costs, incisional hernia rate, intraoperative complication rate, postoperative complication rate, length of hospital stay, operative time, readmission rate and wound infection rate. Results: Fifty-two systematic reviews and (network) meta-analyses were included in this umbrella review, covering more than 1,288,425 patients from 1046 primary sources published between 1996 and 2022. The overall quality of the included reviews was assessed to be low or critically low. Robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery yielded comparable results as conventional laparoscopic surgery in terms of blood loss, conversion to open surgery rate, intraoperative complication rate, postoperative complication rate, readmission rate and wound infection rate for most surgical procedures. While the hospitalization costs of robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery were higher and the operative times of robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery were longer than conventional laparoscopic surgery, robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery reduced the length of hospital stay of patients in nearly all cases. Conclusion: Robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery achieved comparable results with conventional laparoscopic surgery for cholecystectomy, colectomy, hysterectomy, nephrectomy and prostatectomy based on ten clinical outcomes. Further research is needed to prove that robot-assisted laparoscopy is as safe and reliable as conventional laparoscopic surgery.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0239.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Public, Environmental And Occupational Health Keywords: Dengue occurrence; dengue control; dengue and heavy rainfall; dengue and rainfall categories; dengue and climate change
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:56:16 CET)
Identification of Dengue drivers is crucial for pro-active prevention strategies. In semi-arid regions, the relationship between meteorological variables, particularly rainfall, and the dengue vector is complex. This study analyzes associations between the number of dengue cases and rainfall categories in six semi-arid locations in India. Focusing on official website data, we find significant correlations only with heavy rainfall (R>10 mm/day). The findings underscore the importance of heavy rainfall in Dengue incidence and offer insights for pro-active prevention. The study methodology involves rainfall and dengue occurrence over Indian region. This research contributes to the growing body of knowledge on Dengue prevention, emphasizing the need for targeted interventions during periods of heavy rainfall.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0249.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Obstetrics And Gynaecology Keywords: Mullerian agenesis (MA); Uterine aplasia; Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser (MRKH) syndrome; Uterine agenesis; Molecular; Genetics
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:55:24 CET)
Abstract: Infertility affects around 1 in 5 couples in the world. Congenital absence of the uterus results in absolute infertility in females. Mullerian agenesis(MA) is the nondevelopment of the uterus. Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser(MRKH) syndrome is a condition of uterovaginal agenesis in the presence of normal ovaries and 46 XX Karyotype. With the advancement of re-productive techniques, having a biological offspring in women with MA is possible. The exact etiology of MA is unknown although several genes and mechanisms affect the development of Mullerian ducts. Through this systematic review of the available literature, we searched for the genetic basis of MA. The aims included identification of the genes, chromosomal locations, changes responsible for MA, and fertility options, in order to offer proper management and counseling to these women with MA. A total of 85 studies were identified through searches. Most of the studies identified multiple genes at various locations although the commonest in-volved chromosomes 1, 17, and 22. There is also conflicting evidence of the involvement of var-ious candidate genes in the studies. The etiology of MA seems to be multifactorial and complex involving multiple genes, and mechanisms including various mutations and mosaicism.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0271.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Food Science And Technology Keywords: Blue veined cheese; Salting; Salt/moisture ratio; Sensorial; Texture; Water activity
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:53:19 CET)
Salting influences microbial growth, enzymatic activity and biochemical reactions during ripening, thus contributing to the final quality of cheese. The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of different salting methods (dry salting at 12, 24 and 48 h; in brine; and curd salting) on the chemical (moisture and salt content), physico-chemical (pH, titratable acidity and water activity) and sensory (texture profile analysis, colour and sensory attributes) characteristics of an industrial blue vein cheese. Dry salted cheeses had lower moisture content and water activity, and higher salt/moisture content and acidity than those salted in brine and curd. Dry-salted cheeses were also characterised by higher values for hardness, fracturability and instrumental gumminess. Dry-salted cheeses showed differences only in the red/green colour component (a*), with the curd-salted cheeses being less greenish. All cheeses scored high (around 7) in the tasters' overall impression, with the dry-salted cheeses at 12 and 24 h showing optimal growth and even distribution of mould, as well as better flavour and texture.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0240.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Pharmacy Keywords: Antimicrobial use; antimicrobial resistance; COVID-19; pharmacists; primary care
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:52:26 CET)
Research is scarce regarding antimicrobial use and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) for specific localities in Northern Ireland (NI). Additionally, the effects of COVID-19 on antimicrobial pre-scribing patterns and AMR are unknown. Between the European Union (EU) and United States (US), AMR causes approximately 68,000 deaths annually. This study will provide a better understanding of antimicrobial use and prescribing patterns in Belfast and link with AMR. An electronic survey was developed and distributed to eighty-five community pharmacists in Belfast. Yearly and monthly prescription data was gathered from the Business Services Organisation and COVID-19 statistics from Gov.uk. All data was analysed on Microsoft Office Excel® and IBM® SPSS® Statistics 25. Overall response rate was 46%. Most pharmacists (82%) failed to address prescriber non-compliance with guidelines and antimicrobial dosing errors (59%). The most common in-dication for antibiotics was upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs). Overprescribing of anti-biotics was perceived as the leading cause of AMR, therefore 69% of pharmacists indicated in-creased General Practitioner (GP) compliance with guidelines would reduce AMR. Pharmacists’ are in an ideal position to reduce AMR through patient education however, it is demonstrated that pharmacists failed to adequately counsel patients on antibiotic use. All GP practices demonstrated inappropriate antibiotic use, especially for URTIs which suggests antibiotic appropriateness should be reviewed. Many patients avoided contact with GP’s during COVID-19 which may have resulted in reduced antibiotic use. This research established amoxicillin as the most commonly prescribed antibiotic, which is contributing to increased AMR with its broad-spectrum activity and has recognised a decrease in antibiotic prescribing during COVID-19. Based on the results found and a critical review of the literature it is recommended antimicrobial guidelines should be re-viewed and improved, enhanced training should be provided to pharmacists and the antibiotic guardian (AG) campaign should be reenergised.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0242.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Ecology, Evolution, Behavior And Systematics Keywords: Platorchestia; Demaorchestia; intraspecific variation; Japan
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:51:30 CET)
Seventy-three male specimens of ”Platorchestia platensis”from Japan were inspected on 13 morphological characters. Most characters revealed high variation. The coxa and propodus of gnathopod 2 and the carpus of pereopod 7 indicated that the specimens comprised two species: Platorchestia pacifica Miyamoto and Morino, 2004 and Demaorchestia joi (Stock and Biernbaum, 1994) sensu lato. Both species were rediagnosed. Demaorchestia hatakejima Lowry and Myers, 2022 was synonymized to P. pacifica. A key to allied species in Platorchestia and Demaorchestia from Japan and the surrounding countries was given.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0236.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Materials Science And Technology Keywords: Quinoa; Chia; Fibers; Granulation Point; chewable tablets; Chia Mucilage
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:50:20 CET)
The consumption of fiber in the human diet is a global recommendation to ensure a healthy diet. Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa Willd.), a gluten-free grain, and chia (Salvia hispanica), a seed, contain high fiber content and both have the potential to be explored in the development of nutraceutical and pharmaceutical formulations. An interesting characteristic of chia is its ability to form viscous mucilage when in contact with water, bringing the prospect of a binder in solid formulations. To produce tablets with a high fiber content, it is more appropriate to transform the material into granules using a wet process, with the help of a tool that exploits this possibility. Therefore, the objective of the present work was to study, using the Mixer Torque Rheometer, the feasibility of using chia as a binder to produce granulated quinoa and the development of chewable tablets. To this end, an experimental design was carried out to evaluate the impact of variables on the rheometer results for subsequent granulation. It was possible to obtain the granulation point for the formulations and after producing the granules, physical tests were carried out in which we noticed improvements in the flow. In the end, a formulation was selected for the development of chewable tablets containing quinoa and chia fibers.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0234.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Materials Science And Technology Keywords: liquid metal nanoparticles; strain sensor; microwire; laser direct writing
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:48:30 CET)
We report a simple and high-performance flexible strain sensor based on liquid metal nanoparticles (LMNPs) on polyimide substrate by laser induced deposition. The LMNPs were prepared by ultrasonic method, and then the femtosecond laser direct writing technology was used to induce the assembly and deposition of the LMNPs to form liquid metal microwires. Laser local sintering enhances the connection between particles, and a wearable strain sensor was fabricated with the high sensitivity as high as 76.18, the good linearity (a correlation coefficient of 0.999) in a wide sensing rage, the fast response/recovery time of 159 ms/120 ms. Attributed to these extraordinary strain sensing performances, the sensor can sense various dynamic strains in real time, monitor both subtle physiological activities and large human motions. It can be adhered to human skin, and well reflect the change of facial expression and realize real-time monitoring of facial expression. And the vocal cord vibration can be detected for speech recognition while the sensor attached to the outside of the throat.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0232.v1
Subject: Engineering, Safety, Risk, Reliability And Quality Keywords: Provenance; Blockchain; Smart Contract; Predictive Auditing; Cloud Manufacturing Risks; Industrial Internet of Things
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:47:39 CET)
.Cloud manufacturing is an evolving networked framework that enables multiple manufacturers to collaborate in providing a range of services, including design, development, production, and post-sales support. The framework operates on an integrated platform encompassing a range of Industry 4.0 technologies, such as Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices, cloud computing, Internet communication, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, and blockchains. The connectivity of industrial equipment and robots to Internet opens the cloud manufacturing to the massive attack surface of cybersecurity and cyber crime threats caused by external and internal attackers. The impacts can be severe because physical infrastructure of industries is at stake. One potential method to deter such attacks involves utilizing blockchain and artificial intelligence to track the provenance of IIoT devices. This research explores a practical approach to achieve this goal by gathering provenance data associated with operational constraints defined in smart contracts and identifying deviations from these constraints through predictive auditing using artificial intelligence. A software architecture comprising IIoT communications to machine learning for comparing the latest data with the predictive auditing outcomes and logging appropriate risks was designed, developed, and tested. The state changes in the smart ledger of smart contracts were linked with the risks such that the blockchain peers can timely detect high deviations and take actions. The research defined the constraints related to physical boundaries and weight lifting limits allocated to three forklifts and showcased the mechanisms of detecting risks of breaking these constraints with the help of artificial intelligence. It also demonstrated state change rejections by blockchains at medium and high-risk levels. This research followed software development in Java 8 using JDK 8, CORDA blockchain framework, and Weka package for random forest machine learning. As a result of this, the model, along with its design and implementation, has the potential to enhance efficiency and productivity, foster greater trust and transparency in the manufacturing process, booster risk management, strengthen cybersecurity, and advance sustainability efforts.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202312.0272.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Materials Science And Technology Keywords: volcanic fly ash; blended cement; hybrid alkaline cement; alkaline cement
Online: 5 December 2023 (14:47:14 CET)
Abstract: The present work evaluates the feasibility of using volcanic fly ash (VFA), generated by the eruption of the Tajogaite volcano on the island of La Palma (Spain) in 2021, as a precursor in the preparation of cementitious materials with different Portland cement (PC) replacement levels (0%, 30%, 70% and 100%), in the absence (Blended Cement, BC) and presence of an alkaline ac-tivator (Hybrid Alkaline Cement, HAC, and Alkaline Cements, AC). Hydration kinetics (isother-mal conduction calorimetry), paste mechanical strengths and reaction products were character-ised by XRD, FTIR, TG/DTG and BSEM/EDX. The results obtained indicate that the strengths de-veloped by the hybrid alkaline cements (HAC) are higher than those of the blended cements (BC), especially at the age of 2 days, where 25 MPa was obtained with the replacement of 70% PC by VFA. Alkaline cements (AC, 100% VFA) prepared with 8M NaOH solution as activator reached 40 MPa after 2 days. It was observed that in all the binders, depending on the initial composition of the binder mixture and the percentage of replacement and/or activator, VFA reacts to form cementitious gels, C-A-S-H and N-A-S-H type, which supports its use as a mineral addition to blended cement or as a precursor in the preparation of alkaline and hybrid alkaline cements.