• Positive reinforcement training: a tool for care and management of captive vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus aethiops).

      Spiezio, Caterina; Piva, Federica; Regaiolli, Barbara; Vaglio, Stefano (Universities Federation for Animal Welfare, 2016-01-01)
      In modern zoos, training should be an integral component of the animal care and management. The benefits of training include the opportunity for positive interactions with caretakers. This study was carried out with a group of vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus aethiops) housed at the Garda Zoological Park, Italy. Using focal animal sampling, we observed the behaviour performed by all group members from December 2007 to August 2008. The group took part in a training programme to be isolated in a familiar area before the subjects were included in a cognitive study. We collected behavioural data during a pre-training period to assess the social behaviour of the colony and during the training period to investigate the effects of the training programme on the behaviour of individuals. Additionally, a second phase of the study was conducted and training sessions with individual monkeys were video-recorded to determine the behaviour of animals during each training session and to thus confirm that they were suitable for participating in the procedure. Our results suggest that the training programme enriched the daily routine of these captive primates by increasing affiliative behaviours while decreasing agonistic behaviours. Furthermore, there was behavioural response variability among the individuals under the training procedure. However, all the individuals were trained to calmly enter a familiar area and be isolated from other members of the group. In conclusion, our findings highlight the importance of using positive reinforcement training to reduce the tension directly associated with potentially stressful procedures by allowing primates to participate voluntarily in these procedures. In addition, the training was found to be an enrichment tool for vervet monkeys.
    • Local sustainability and cooperation actions in the Mediterranean region

      Daddi, Tiberio; Vaglio, Stefano; Battaglia, Massimo (MDPI, 2014-05-14)
      The populations of the Middle East and Africa are increasing rapidly, contributing to rapid urban growth. This paper describes a two-year action research process involving diverse public, private, and community stakeholders. The actions aimed to develop and strengthen the capabilities of three Mediterranean cities (Marrakech, Morocco; Sin el Fil, Lebanon; and Bodrum, Turkey) in managing and promoting local sustainable development. The needs and priorities of each Mediterranean partner were identified and pilot actions were elaborated to promote urban sustainability, the exploitation of local resources, and the enhancement of local tangible and intangible assets. The paper describes the outputs of pilot actions carried out in these cities, highlighting how these experiences contribute to the current debate on urban sustainability. Broad implications for policy and practice are discussed.
    • Outlook of carbon capture technology and challenges

      Wilberforce, Tabbi; Baroutaji, Ahmad; Soudan, Bassel; Hai Al-Alami, Abdul; Ghani Olabi, Abdul (Elsevier, 2018-12-04)
      The greenhouse gases emissions produced by industry and power plants are the cause of climate change. An effective approach for limiting the impact of such emissions is adopting modern Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology that can capture more than 90% of carbon dioxide (CO2) generated from power plants. This paper presents an evaluation of state-of-the-art technologies used in the capturing CO2. The main capturing strategies including post-combustion, pre-combustion, and oxy – combustion are reviewed and compared. Various challenges associated with storing and transporting the CO2 from one location to the other are also presented. Furthermore, recent advancements of CCS technology are discussed to highlight the latest progress made by the research community in developing affordable carbon capture and storage systems. Finally, the future prospects and sustainability aspects of CCS technology as well as policies developed by different countries concerning such technology are presented.
    • Utilisation of smart devices in the construction industry: An empirical study in the dominican republic

      Silverio-Fernández, Manuel; Renukappa, Suresh; Suresh, Subashini (IGI Global, 2018-08-31)
      On a global scale, the construction sector is considered to have a high degree of decentralised information. In the Dominican Republic, the construction industry represents the most significant economic activity in the country. Smart devices and the Internet of Things create an opportunity to enhance the exchange of information in the construction sector. This article reports on the empirical findings of an investigation focused on the implementation of smart devices in the AEC sector. Findings address the status of digitalisation in the construction sector of the construction industry as well as main utilisations of smart devices. The findings are based on semi-structured interviews with fifteen professionals from nine construction organisations. The article concludes that smart devices increase efficiency in the construction industry of Dominican Republic by adding mobility, ubiquitous data access, and digitalisation of paperwork.
    • Grooming decisions under structural despotism: the impact of social rank & bystanders among wild male chimpanzees

      Newton-Fisher, Nicholas E; Seraph Kiambi Kaburu, Stefano (Elsevier, 2017-05-25)
      Understanding the evolution of cooperation remains a central concern in studies of animal behaviour, with fundamental issues being how individuals avoid being cheated, or ‘short-changed’, and how partners are chosen. Economic decisions made during social interactions should depend upon the availability of potential partners nearby, as these bystanders generate temptations to defect from the current partner. The influence of bystanders is highlighted in two theoretical approaches, biological markets theory and parcelling, both economic models of behaviour. Here, we tested predictions of these models using the grooming behaviour of wild male chimpanzees, Pan troglodytes, living under strong structural despotism, where grooming is exchanged both for agonistic support and for itself, and so we provide the first investigation of both presence and value of bystanders on chimpanzees' grooming decisions. We found that male chimpanzees took into account the relative value (rank) of bystanders compared to that of their current partner, with this more important than bystander numbers. High-ranking bystanders appeared to generate incentives to defect from a potentially cooperative interaction and we found that grooming effort was parcelled into discrete episodes, with smaller parcels used when a bystander outranked the current partner. The number of bystanders also generated a temptation to defect, as bidirectional (reciprocated) bouts were more likely to occur with fewer bystanders. Such bouts were more likely with smaller rank distances between groomer and recipient. We found no influence of grooming relationship on initial investment: groomers did not appear to trust that they would receive grooming in return, even from those with whom they had a history of strongly reciprocal grooming. Our findings are consistent with an economic-benefits, markets-based approach, but not a relationship model paradigm. Our work highlights the importance of considering the immediate social context (number and quality of bystanders) in studies of cooperation.
    • Theoretical and numerical crush analysis of multi-stage nested aluminium alloy tubular structures under axial impact loading

      Tran, TrongNahn; Lec, DucHieu; Baroutaji, Ahmad (Elsevier, 2018-12-24)
      In this paper, the crush behaviour and energy absorption performance of nested tubular thin-walled structures made of aluminium alloy AA6061-O under dynamic axial loading are investigated. Theoretical solutions for Average Crush Force () of these structures are proposed by combining the energy method, simple superposition principle, and interaction among the various components of the structures. The derived theoretical models are verified by comparing their predictions with numerical and experimental values. The energy absorption indicators of the various structures are calculated and used to compare the various structures and to determine the best performing one. It is found that the nested structure with a higher number of tubes exhibits the best crashworthiness performance due to energy absorption enhancements resulted from the interaction effects between its components as well as its capability to reduce the peak crush force.
    • tmem33 is essential for VEGF-mediated endothelial calcium oscillations and angiogenesis

      Savage, Aaron M.; Kurusamy, Sathishkumar; Chen, Yan; Jiang, Zhen; Chhabria, Karishma; MacDonald, Ryan B.; Kim, Hyejeong R.; Wilson, Heather L.; van Eeden, Fredericus J.M.; Armesilla, Angel L.; Chico, Timothy J.A.; Wilkinson, Robert N. (Nature Publishing Group, 2019-02-13)
      Angiogenesis requires co-ordination of multiple signalling inputs to regulate the behaviour of endothelial cells (ECs) as they form vascular networks. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is essential for angiogenesis and induces downstream signalling pathways including increased cytosolic calcium levels. Here we show that transmembrane protein 33 (tmem33), which has no known function in multicellular organisms, is essential to mediate effects of VEGF in both zebrafish and human ECs. We find that tmem33 localises to the endoplasmic reticulum in zebrafish ECs and is required for cytosolic calcium oscillations in response to Vegfa. tmem33-mediated endothelial calcium oscillations are critical for formation of endothelial tip cell filopodia and EC migration. Global or endothelial-cell-specific knockdown of tmem33 impairs multiple downstream effects of VEGF including ERK phosphorylation, Notch signalling and embryonic vascular development. These studies reveal a hitherto unsuspected role for tmem33 and calcium oscillations in the regulation of vascular development.
    • Are young adults encouraged to join the construction industry?

      Stride, Mark; Chung, Sammy; Subashini, Suresh (University of Wolverhampton, 2018-12-19)
      The construction industry is currently suffering from a lack of skilled workers, from builders and plumbers, to quantity surveyors and architects. Reasons for this include the recession and that the retiring workforce is not being replaced by younger generations. This is having a huge impact on the country’s ability to keep up with the demand for houses that need building; consequently meaning there is a shortage in homes in the country also. The research question addressed in the paper is: What can be done to encourage young adults (14-16 years old) to join the construction industry? The research question is answered through a critical literature review and analysis of questionnaire responses. The results show that there is little education on the construction industry to encourage young adults, and that it is perceived to be a dirty and low status industry to work in. On this basis, it is recommended that the Government and professional bodies need to do more to educate children in schools on what the construction industry truly is, and what opportunities it has for a good career. An initiative that was introduced in 2017 was the apprenticeship levy, which persuades companies to employ apprentices and up skill current employees subsequently encouraging school children to move directly into the construction industry. By schools, universities, colleges and businesses supporting each other it allows longevity and sustainability of the construction industry to be strengthened.
    • Leadership initiatives for health and safety risk management systems in a small construction company – A case study

      Suresh, Subashini; Oduoza, Chike; Renukappa, Suresh (IntechOpen, 2017-05-15)
      In a globalised world the need for leadership in the construction industry has been greater due to the fact that health and safety has become an important business tool to reduce accidents to save lives and minimise injuries. The aim of this chapter is to demonstrate the importance and role of leadership for manging risks associated with health and safety aspects in small construction companies. Therefore, a case study of an Italian family run small construction company is investigated and reported. The chapter dwells in depth with regards to health and safety (H&S) risk management issues such as: commitment, workers engagement, prioritisation of H&S, compliance, measurement and organisational learning from a leadership perspective. As a diagnostic tool Leadership and Worker Involvement toolkit was administrated in the company. The toolkit had assessment levels (walking, running and sprinting). Analysis of the case study company showed they were at walking and running stages in various aspects. But the leadership aspiration of the company was to reach the ‘sprinting’ stage as a long-term target and sustain it to minimise health and safety risk. A holistic approach was developed to achieve the leadership aspirations of the company. An Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Framework (strategy, process and performance) with a health and safety strand was developed and evaluated. This strand had health and safety at the heart of the organisational vision and objectives which had processes to identify the health and safety risk factors which then lead to health and safety performance measurement. This measurement is based on the Balance Score Card concept which includes H&S risk from aspects such as: financial, clients, business process and learning and growth. Evaluation of framework revealed that violation of H&S laws and regulations have an impact on all the four aspects of Balance Score Card (financial, clients, business process and learning and growth). This then has an overall effect on the ERM which has an impact on leadership decisions on H&S aspects. Therefore, in conclusion, the role of leadership in small companies is to In-doc controls understand the importance of H&S aspects and develop strategies which are then embedded in the processes of the companies to minimise H&S risks for their sustainability and competitiveness. This chapter is beneficial for professional at site (operatives/site trainees), project and programme level (site/project/programme managers) and for leadership team (Directors/board members).
    • Cariprazine: pharmacology and clinical management of psychiatric disorders

      Antoun Reyad, Ayman; Mishriky, Raafat (Healio, 2019-12-31)
      Cariprazine is a new atypical antipsychotic for schizophrenia and bipolar disorders 2 management. In this article, the role of cariprazine, a partial D2 and D3 receptors 3 agonist with a higher D3 affinity, in the management of psychiatric conditions is 4 illustrated. Cariprazine caused significant improvements in psychiatric scales such 5 as Positive and Negative Syndrome scale (PANSS), clinical global impressions 6 (CGI) and young mania rating scales (YMRS) and was associated with side effects 7 such as akathisia, restlessness and insomnia. These findings will guide psychiatrists 8 and pharmacists in their clinical role for supporting psychiatric patients care.
    • Downregulation of early visual cortex excitability mediates oscillopsia suppression

      Ahmad, Hena; Roberts, Ed; Patel, Mitesh; Lobo, Rhannon; Seemungal, Barry M.; Arshad, Qadeer; Bronstein, Adolfo M. (Academic Academy of Neurology, 2017-08-16)
      Objective: To identify in an observational study the neurophysiologic mechanisms that mediate adaptation to oscillopsia in patients with bilateral vestibular failure (BVF). Methods: We directly probe the hypothesis that adaptive changes that mediate oscillopsia suppression implicate the early visual-cortex (V1/V2). Accordingly, we investigated V1/V2 excitability using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) in 12 avestibular patients and 12 healthy controls. Specifically, we assessed TMS-induced phosphene thresholds at baseline and cortical excitability changes while performing a visual motion adaptation paradigm during the following conditions: baseline measures (i.e., static), during visual motion (i.e., motion before adaptation), and during visual motion after 5 minutes of unidirectional visual motion adaptation (i.e., motion adapted). Results: Patients had significantly higher baseline phosphene thresholds, reflecting an underlying adaptive mechanism. Individual thresholds were correlated with oscillopsia symptom load. During the visual motion adaptation condition, no differences in excitability at baseline were observed, but during both the motion before adaptation and motion adapted conditions, we observed significantly attenuated cortical excitability in patients. Again, this attenuation in excitability was stronger in less symptomatic patients. Conclusions: Our findings provide neurophysiologic evidence that cortically mediated adaptive mechanisms in V1/V2 play a critical role in suppressing oscillopsia in patients with BVF.
    • Functional neuroimaging of visuo-vestibular interaction

      Roberts, Ed; Ahmad, Hena; Arshad, Qadeer; Patel, Mitesh; Dima, Dinai; Leech, Robert; Seemungal, Barry M.; Sharp, David J.; Bronstein, Adolfo M. (Springer, 2016-12-10)
      The brain combines visual, vestibular and proprioceptive information to distinguish between self- and world motion. Often these signals are complementary and indicate that the individual is moving or stationary with respect to the surroundings. However, conflicting visual motion and vestibular cues can lead to ambiguous or false sensations of motion. In this study, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to explore human brain activation when visual and vestibular cues were either complementary or in conflict. We combined a horizontally moving optokinetic stimulus with caloric irrigation of the right ear to produce conditions where the vestibular activation and visual motion indicated the same (congruent) or opposite directions of self-motion (incongruent). Visuo-vestibular conflict was associated with increased activation in a network of brain regions including posterior insular and transverse temporal areas, cerebellar tonsil, cingulate and medial frontal gyri. In the congruent condition, there was increased activation in primary and secondary visual cortex. These findings suggest that when sensory information regarding self-motion is contradictory, there is preferential activation of multisensory vestibular areas to resolve this ambiguity. When cues are congruent, there is a bias towards visual cortical activation. The data support the view that a network of brain areas including the posterior insular cortex may play an important role in integrating and disambiguating visual and vestibular cues.
    • Patients with chronic dizziness following traumatic head injury typically have multiple diagnoses involving combined peripheral and central vestibular dysfunction

      Arshad, Qadeer; Roberts, Ed; Ahmad, Hena; Lobo, Rhannon; Patel, Mitesh; Ham, Timothy; Sharp, David J.; Seemungal, Barry M. (Elsevier, 2017-02-07)
      Objective We hypothesised that chronic vestibular symptoms (CVS) of imbalance and dizziness post-traumatic head injury (THI) may relate to: (i) the occurrence of multiple simultaneous vestibular diagnoses including both peripheral and central vestibular dysfunction in individual patients increasing the chance of missed diagnoses and suboptimal treatment; (ii) an impaired response to vestibular rehabilitation since the central mechanisms that mediate rehabilitation related brain plasticity may themselves be disrupted. Methods We report the results of a retrospective analysis of both the comprehensive clinical and vestibular laboratory testing of 20 consecutive THI patients with prominent and persisting vestibular symptoms still present at least 6 months post THI. Results Individual THI patients typically had multiple vestibular diagnoses and unique to this group of vestibular patients, often displayed both peripheral and central vestibular dysfunction. Despite expert neuro-otological management, at two years 20% of patients still had persisting vestibular symptoms. Conclusion In summary, chronic vestibular dysfunction in THI could relate to: (i) the presence of multiple vestibular diagnoses, increasing the risk of ‘missed’ vestibular diagnoses leading to persisting symptoms; (ii) the impact of brain trauma which may impair brain plasticity mediated repair mechanisms. Apart from alerting physicians to the potential for multiple vestibular diagnoses in THI, future work to identify the specific deficits in brain function mediating poor recovery from post-THI vestibular dysfunction could provide the rationale for developing new therapy for head injury patients whose vestibular symptoms are resistant to treatment.
    • Does outstretching the arms improve postural stability?

      Patel, Mitesh; Buckwell, David; Hawken, Malcolm; Bronstein, Adolfo M. (Elsevier, 2014-07-17)
      We spontaneously outstretch our arms when standing upon challenging surfaces, yet the effect of stretching the arms upon postural stability is unknown. We investigated whether stretching out the arms laterally improves postural control during tandem stance on a narrow beam. Twelve healthy participants stood upon a beam, right foot in front of the left foot, for 30 s with arms outstretched or down to the side, with eyes open and closed. Mediolateral head movement was characterised by Root Mean Square amplitude (RMS), sway path, velocity during the largest excursion and power spectrum. Spectra for lateral forces from a force platform beneath the beam were also recorded. Outstretching the arms significantly reduced RMS, sway path and velocity of maximum displacement of head movement with eyes closed but not with eyes open. A similar trend was present in the power spectra of head motion and sway platform lateral forces. In conclusion, outstretching the arms helps postural stability in challenging situations such as tandem stance on a narrow beam with eyes closed. Although the exact mechanisms require further investigation, the effects are most likely mediated by changes in segmental inertia and the ability to make corrective arm movements.
    • Attention modulates adaptive motor learning in the ‘broken escalator’ paradigm

      Patel, Mitesh; Kaski, Diego; Bronstein, Adolfo M. (Springer, 2014-04-09)
      The physical stumble caused by stepping onto a stationary (broken) escalator represents a locomotor aftereffect (LAE) that attests to a process of adaptive motor learning. Whether such learning is primarily explicit (requiring attention resources) or implicit (independent of attention) is unknown. To address this question, we diverted attention in the adaptation (MOVING) and aftereffect (AFTER) phases of the LAE by loading these phases with a secondary cognitive task (sequential naming of a vegetable, fruit and a colour). Thirty-six healthy adults were randomly assigned to 3 equally sized groups. They performed 5 trials stepping onto a stationary sled (BEFORE), 5 with the sled moving (MOVING) and 5 with the sled stationary again (AFTER). A 'Dual-Task-MOVING (DTM)' group performed the dual-task in the MOVING phase and the 'Dual-Task-AFTEREFFECT (DTAE)' group in the AFTER phase. The 'control' group performed no dual task. We recorded trunk displacement, gait velocity and gastrocnemius muscle EMG of the left (leading) leg. The DTM, but not the DTAE group, had larger trunk displacement during the MOVING phase, and a smaller trunk displacement aftereffect compared with controls. Gait velocity was unaffected by the secondary cognitive task in either group. Thus, adaptive locomotor learning involves explicit learning, whereas the expression of the aftereffect is automatic (implicit). During rehabilitation, patients should be actively encouraged to maintain maximal attention when learning new or challenging locomotor tasks.
    • Sex differences in scent-marking in captive red-ruffed lemurs

      Janda, Ellese D.; Perry, Kate L.; Hankinson, Emma; Walker, David; Vaglio, Stefano (Wiley, 2019-01-21)
      Primate chemical communication remains underappreciated, as primates are considered to rely on other sensory modalities. However, various lines of evidence suggest that olfaction plays an important role in primate societies, including the conspicuous scent-marking behavior of many strepsirrhines and callitrichines. Although lemurs typically show scent-marking, little is known about this behavior in red-ruffed lemurs (Varecia variegata rubra). We combined behavioral observations and semiochemistry analyses to improve our understanding of scent-marking in two captive troops housed at Dudley and Twycross zoos(UK). We collected olfactory behavioral observations by focusing on two family troops (N=7) for 132hr. We investigated the volatile compounds of ano-genital scent-marks using solid-phase microextraction and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and compared volatile chemical profiles with features of the signaller. Males scent-marked most frequently and predominantly in specific meaningful areas of the enclosure, while within females the occurrence of scent-marking was related to their age. We found behavioral sexual dimorphism, with male predominantly depositing secretions via neck and mandible glands and females via ano-genital glands. We identified a total of 32 volatile components of ano-genital gland secretion, including compounds that have already been found in other mammals as sex pheromones and cues to fitness, in ano-genital scent-marks spontaneously left on filter paper by adult females. Our findings suggest that red-ruffed lemurs might use scent-marking to convey information about sex and female age, with male neck marking behavior playing defensive territorial functions and ano-genital marking related to socio-sexual communication.
    • The adoption of big data concepts for sustainable practices implementation in the construction industry

      Reyes, Paola; Suresh, Subashini; Renukappa, Suresh (IEEE, 2018-12-17)
      The global construction business is on a point of a paradigm shift. The exponential growth of digital technologies, the increasing impacts of climate change, impending Brexit and looming social and environmental pressures are driving change to the construction industry. Increasingly policies press for the adoption of sustainability and construction organisations are realising that small sustainable impacts are no longer enough. Therefore, measurement is one of the keys to the implementation of sustainable construction strategies. Advances in data gathering, computing power and connectivity mean that construction organisations have more information and data than ever before. Collecting, analysing and understanding those large volumes of available data, known as Big Data, about how an organisation operates sustainably leads to knowledge that can improve decision making, refine goals and focus efforts. However, when it comes to sustainability the great thing about big data is that it is unlocking the ability of businesses to understand and act on what is typically their biggest sustainable (i.e. economic, social and environmental) impacts - the ones outside their control. Measuring and understanding how doing business really does affect the natural world will open new opportunities for bringing sustainability inside an organisation: creating change, cutting costs and boosting long-term profitability in a resource-constrained world. Still, there are issues and challenges around gathering sustainability-related data, as well as in analysing and interpreting of data points. Therefore, the aim of this research is to explore the barriers to adopting big data related to sustainable strategies. The relationship between Policy Making, Big Data and sustainability is still in early stages, but already several applications can be mention to the environment, health and construction, such as biodiversity loss monitoring, pollution zones Identification, endangered species location, smart energy management, cost reduction or investment assessment. In the same way, barriers and opportunities were identified, for instance: the lack of financial resources and business case, skills and training, unequal opportunity and security and disclosure issues among the barriers, and partnership, emerging and accessible technology, personalization of the environment among the opportunities. Finally, the biggest challenge presented by the implementation of Big Data is concept standardization, since there are many areas in which one way or another is making use of this technology without being recognized as such. In the same way, the greatest asset that represents the use of Big Data for sustainability is the identification of the future causes and consequences of climate change and its subsequent prevention or mitigation in time.
    • Developments of policies related to smart cities: a critical review

      Keshvardoost, Sina; Renukappa, Suresh; Suresh, Subashini (IEEE, 2019-01-10)
      In recent years, the idea of smart sustainable cities has come to the fore. Furthermore, it is quickly gaining momentum, and worldwide attention as a promising response to the challenge of urban sustainability. This pertains especially to ecologically and technologically advanced nations. This paper provides a comprehensive overview of smart (and) sustainable cities in terms of their underlying foundations, assumptions, state– of–the art research development, policies, and future planning practices. As to the design strategy, the paper reviews existing sustainable city models and smart city approaches. Their strengths and weaknesses are examined by focusing on the degree to which cities to the objectives and whether the latter incorporate these goals. To distinguish the related challenges, these models and adopt methodologies are assessed and contrasted against each other in line with the notion of sustainability. The gaps in the exploration inside the field of smart sustainable cities are recognized as in accordance with the research being proposed. Subsequently, a coordinated approach is proposed in view of an applied theoretical perspective to align the existing problems and solutions identified for future practices in the area of smart, sustainable urban planning and smart cities policy development. With regard to knowledge contribution, the paper demonstrates Policy developments related to smart cities in general and particular problems within the policy development, as well as considering the commitment to the application of the policy. Also, diverse country’s approach on policies for smart cities and their policy related to Governance It also reveals that numerous research opportunities are available and can be realized within the realm of smart sustainable cities.
    • Endemic, endangered, and evolutionarily significant: Cryptic lineages in Seychelles’ frogs (Anura: Sooglossidae)

      Labisko, Jim; Griffiths, Richard A.; Chong-Seng, Lindsay; Bunbury, Nancy; Maddock, Simon T; Bradfield, Kay S.; Taylor, Michelle L. (Oxford University Press, 2019-01-12)
      Cryptic diversity corresponding with island of origin has been previously reported in the endemic, geographically restricted sooglossid frogs of the Seychelles archipelago. The evolutionary pattern behind this has not been fully explored, and given current amphibian declines and the increased extinction risk faced by island species, we sought to identify evolutionarily significant units (ESUs) to address conservation concerns for these highly threatened anurans. We obtained genetic data for two mitochondrial (mtDNA) and four nuclear (nuDNA) genes from all known populations of sooglossid frog (on the islands of Mahé, Praslin and Silhouette) for phylogenetic analyses and to construct nuDNA haplotype networks. Bayesian and maximum likelihood analyses of mtDNA support the monophyly and molecular differentiation of populations in all species that occur on multiple islands. Haplotype networks using statistical parsimony revealed multiple high-frequency haplotypes shared between islands and taxa, in addition to numerous geographically distinct (island-specific) haplotypes for each species. We consider each island-specific population of sooglossid frog as an ESU and advise conservation managers to do likewise. Furthermore, our results identify each island lineage as a candidate species, evidence for which is supported by analyses of mtDNA based on Bayesian Poisson tree processes, and independent analyses of mtDNA and nuDNA using the multispecies coalescent. Our findings add to the growing understanding of the biogeography and hidden diversity within this globally important region.
    • Compaction analysis and optimisation of convex-faced pharmaceutical tablets using numerical techniques

      Baroutaji, Ahmad; Lenihan, Sandra; Bryan, Keith (Elsevier, 2019-12-31)
      Capping failure, edge chipping, and non-uniform mechanical properties of convexfaced pharmaceutical tablets are common problems in pharma industry. In this paper, Finite Element Modelling (FEM) and Design of Experiment (DoE) techniques are adopted to find the optimal shape of convex-faced (CF) pharmaceutical tablet which has more uniform mechanical properties and less capping and chipping tendency. The effects of the geometrical parameters and friction on the compaction responses of convex-faced pharmaceutical tablets were first identified and analysed. The finite element model of the tabletting process was generated using the implicit code (ABAQUS) and validated against experimental measurements. Response Surface Methodology (RSM) was employed to establish the relationship between the design variables, represented by the geometrical parameters and the friction coefficient, and compaction responses of interest including residual die pressure, the variation of relative density within the tablet, and the relative shear stress of the edge of the tablet. A statistical-based optimisation approach is then employed to undertake shape optimisation of CF tablets. The obtained results demonstrated how the geometrical parameters of CF tablet and the friction coefficient have significant effects on the compaction behaviour and quality of the pharmaceutical tablet.