• Herpetological Diversity of Timor-Leste: Updates and a Review of Species Distributions

      O'Shea, Mark; Sanchez, Caitlin; Kathriner, Andrew; Mecke, Sven; Carvalho, Venancio Lopes; Ribeiro, Agrivedo Valela; Soares, Zito Afranio; Araujo, Luis Lemos de; Kaiser, Hinrich (Asiatic Herpetological Research Society, 2015-06-15)
      We report the results of five herpetological surveys during 2011–2013 that included visits to all districts of Timor-Leste (Aileu, Ainaro, Baucau, Bobonaro, Dili, Covalima, Ermera, Lautém, Liquiça, Manatuto, Manufahi, Viqueque) except the Oecusse exclave. Our fieldwork culminated in the discovery of one putative new frog species (genus Kaloula), at least five putative new lizard species (genera Cyrtodactylus, Cryptoblepharus, and Sphenomorphus), and two putative new snake species (genera Stegonotus and Indotyphlops). In addition, we present new distribution records of amphibians and reptiles for 11 of the country’s 12 contiguous districts, along with additional natural history data. Results from our surveys increase the number of amphibian and reptiles known to occur in Timor-Leste from 22 species before our surveys began to over 60, including over 20 as yet undescribed species.
    • Heuristic-based journey planner for mobility as a service (Maas)

      Georgakis, P; Almohammad, A; Bothos, E; Magoutas, B; Arnaoutaki, K; Mentzas, G (MDPI, 2020-12-04)
      The continuing growth of urbanisation poses a real threat to the operation of transportation services in large metropolitan areas around the world. As a response, several initiatives that promote public transport and active travelling have emerged in the last few years. Mobility as a Service (MaaS) is one such initiative with the main goal being the provision of a holistic urban mobility solution through a single interface, the MaaS operator. The successful implementation of MaaS requires the support of a technology platform for travellers to fully benefit from the offered transport services. A central component of such a platform is a journey planner with the ability to provide trip options that efficiently integrate the different modes included in a MaaS scheme. This paper presents a heuristic that implements a scenario-based journey planner for users of MaaS. The proposed heuristic provides routes composed of different modes including private cars, public transport, bike-sharing, car-sharing and ride-hailing. The methodological approach for the generation of journeys is explained and its implementation using a microservices architecture is presented. The implemented system was trialled in two European cities and the analysis of user satisfaction results reveal good overall performance.
    • Heuristics, Bias and Personality Traits Attribution: The Cognitive Side of Gender Career Inequalities in a Male-dominated Work Sector

      Riva, Silvia; Chinyio, Ezekiel; Hampton, Paul (European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology, 2018-09-05)
      Background: We have witnessed significant work-life policy advancements designed to help men and women combine employment with career opportunities more equally, yet gender inequality persists. This is particular evident in some industry sectors that are traditionally male-predominant. A study was thus aimed at exploring gender career opportunities using the perspective of the Implicit Personality and the social cognitive theory in a particularly male-dominated work sector: the Construction Industry (CI). Methods: This study is based on a qualitative approach by using ethnographic observations and interviews in 10 Construction sites in the West Midlands, UK in a frame-time period of 6 months. The great part of the data collection period was structured in observation ranged between 2 and 4 hr per day, 1 to 3 days per week. In each site, observations involved activities by 5 to 20 people. Results: The research was able to clarify different aspects related with career opportunities for male and female Construction workers. While they enjoyed working in the environment, there was an obvious gender-lopsided workforce with most leadership positions being held by men while women work in mainly softer roles. These gender differences were markedly perpetuated by different social cognitive biases and implicit personality heuristics. Conclusion: The Implicit Personality and the social cognitive paradigm represent an excellent framework to explain gender imbalance in construction. An understanding of how women view the construction workplace will contribute to attracting and retaining them in an industry that is in a constant growth but with a persistent gender imbalance.
    • The hidden burden of community enteral feeding on the emergency department

      Barrett, D; Li, V; Merrick, S; Murugananthan, A; Steed, Helen (Wiley, 2020-10-05)
      Abstract Background Enteral feeding tubes are associated with their most serious complications in the days and weeks after insertion, but there is limited published data in the literature on late complications and the implications for the healthcare service. Methods Retrospective observational study of attendances to a UK hospital emergency department with enteral tube complications as the primary reason for attendance. Results Over 24 months 139 attendances were recorded. Dislodged tubes and blocked tubes accounted for the majority of complications and subsequent admissions, with a mixture of enteral tube types being associated with both. Thirty-five percent were admitted and the average healthcare cost per attendance was $1071. Conclusions Enteral tube complications can place a hidden burden on the patient, on ED and on healthcare costs. More work on education and supporting carers to resolve problems themselves could reduce the burden on busy emergency departments.
    • The hidden endoscopic burden of sleeve gastrectomy and its comparison with Roux-en-Y gastric bypass

      Arndtz, Katherine; Steed, Helen; Hodson, James; Manjunath, Srikantaiah; Gastroenterology Department, Walsall Manor Hospital (Katherine Arndtz, Srikantaiah Manjunath). (Hellenic Society of Gastroenterology, 2016-01-08)
      BACKGROUND:This study aimed to assess the endoscopic burden of bariatric surgical procedures at our trust. This is an enhanced parallel study to "The Hidden Endoscopic burden of Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass" published in Frontline Gastroenterology in 2013 incorporating the data for sleeve gastrectomy and comparison with Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB). METHODS:This is a retrospective study that included 211 patients undergoing sleeve gastrectomy over a 34-month period. We utilized previously collected data for the RYGB patient cohort which included 553 patients over a 29-month period. We searched our hospital endoscopic database for patients who underwent post-operative endoscopy for indications related to their surgery. RESULTS:16.6% of the sleeve gastrectomy patients required post-operative endoscopy, of whom 11.4% underwent therapeutic procedures. This compares to 20.4% of the RYGB cohort of whom 50.4% needed therapeutic procedures (P<0.001). 1.9% of sleeve gastrectomy patients encountered a post-operative staple line leak and collectively required 29 endoscopic procedures. One patient also developed stricturing (0.47%) requiring 18 pneumatic dilatations. 11.4% of the RYGB cohort developed an anastomotic stricture requiring 57 balloon dilatation procedures. To date, these procedures have accumulated an equivalent cost of €159,898 in endoscopy tariffs, or €177 per RYGB and €373 per sleeve gastrectomy performed. CONCLUSIONS:Bariatric surgery can have significant implications in terms of patient morbidity and financial cost. Having a local bariatric surgery service increases the demand for endoscopic procedures in our hospital, both in investigating for and dealing with post-operative complications. Provision of extra resources and expertise needs to be taken into account.
    • Hiding in plain sight: a new species of bent-toed gecko (Squamata: Gekkonidae: Cyrtodactylus) from West Timor, collected by Malcolm Smith in 1924

      We describe a new species of bent-toed gecko from a single specimen initially collected in 1924 by Malcolm Smith on Timor Island in the Lesser Sunda Archipelago of Indonesia. Cyrtodactylus celatus sp. nov. is distinguished from all other congeners by the following combination of characters: small adult size; without spinose tubercles on the ventrolateral body fold and along the lateral margin of the tail; 16 longitudinal rows of tubercles at midbody; 42 ventral scales between the ventrolateral folds at midbody; no transversely enlarged, median subcaudal scales; 17 subdigital lamellae (seven basal + ten distal) under the fourth toe; no abrupt transition between postfemoral and ventral femoral scale series. The specimen is the earliest confirmed record of the genus Cyrtodactylus for Timor, and it is the first putatively endemic gecko species described from this island.
    • High Level Architecture For Distributed Agent Simulation In Computer Games

      Kumar, Pawan; Mehdi, Qasim; Gough, Norman (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2005)
      Multi Agent System (MAS) have been in existence for quite a long time and have been a focused area of research in different paradigms over the years. As a result, several test beds and simulation tools exist for their deployment in software engineering problems. However, these test beds are suited for specific agents types and environments and lack support for interoperating with other agent architectures and environments. Further, they do not exploit the power of modern distributed and parallel computing environments. Here at RIATec, there is a powerful escience Beowulf cluster that provides ample resources for distributed simulation of MAS. Such simulation has several possible target applications such as in computer games and training virtual environments and therefore it is important that such simulation is reused. Moreover, good visualization, rendering and interactive tools are needed for evaluating, testing and interacting with the system. In this paper, a proposal for a reusable architecture and visualization test bed based on Highlevel architecture (HLA) and Unreal technology is provided for a high performance MAS simulator.
    • High nuclearity Ni(ii) cages from hydroxamate ligands

      McDonald, C; Sanz, S; Brechin, EK; Singh, MK; Rajaraman, G; Gaynor, D; Jones, LF (Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), 2014-08-13)
      The synthesis, structural and magnetic characterisation of a family of Ni(ii) cages built from hydroxamate ligands is presented. Two pentanuclear 12-MCNi(ii)-4 metallacrowns [Ni5(L1) 4(MeOH)4](ClO4)2·2MeOH (1) and [Ni5(L1)4(py)5](ClO 4)2·H2O (2) (where L1H 2 = 2-(dimethylamino)phenylhydroxamic acid) share analogous, near-planar {Ni5(L1)4}2+ cores, but differ in the number and nature of the ligands located at the axial Ni(ii) sites; the addition of pyridine converting square planar Ni(ii) ions to square-based pyramidal and octahedral Ni(ii) ions, introducing extra paramagnetic metal centres which 'switch on' additional magnetic superexchange pathways. Subtle variations in the reaction scheme used to produce complexes 1 and 2 result in both a change of topology and an increase in nuclearity, through isolation of the hepta- and nonametallic complexes [Ni7(L 1H)8(L1)2(H2O) 6](SO4)·15H2O (3), [Ni 9(μ-H2O)2(L2)6(L 2H)4(H2O)2](SO4) ·29H2O (4) and [Ni9(μ-H2O) 2(L2)6(L2H)4(H 2O)2](ClO4)2·2MeOH· 18H2O (5) (where L2H2 = 2-(amino) phenylhydroxamic acid). Complementary dc magnetic susceptibility studies and DFT analysis indicate dominant antiferromagnetic exchange interactions in 1, 2, 4 and 5, but competing ferro- and antiferromagnetic exchange in 3. © the Partner Organisations 2014.
    • High selectivity and affinity of Linde type F towards NH+4 on application as a soil amendment for maize growth

      Jakkula, Vijay S.; Williams, Craig D.; Hocking, Trevor J.; Fullen, Michael A. (Elsevier, 2006)
      Linde type F (LTF) the synthetic form of edingtonite (EDI) was synthesised in K form and ion exchanged with NH4NO3. Zeolite was then characterised before and after ion exchange by XRD, XRF, TGA and SEM. Ammonium exchanged LTF was introduced as a soil amendment (1%, 2% and 4% zeolite to soil loadings) to look at growth of maize plant (Zea mays) and compared with a control comprising of NPK fertiliser added soil. Results showed LTF had a very high selectivity upon ion exchange and high affinity when introduced as a soil amendment towards NH+4. Results were promising for ion exchange reactions in a zeolite–soil system, whereby cations present in soil exchanged for K+ more freely than NH+4 present in the LTF framework.
    • High selectivity and affinity of synthetic Phillipsite compared with natural Phillipsite towards ammonium (NH4+) and its potential as a slow release fertilizer

      Jakkula, Vijay S.; Williams, Craig D.; Hocking, Trevor J.; Fullen, Michael A. (Taylor & Francis, 2011)
      Phillipsite (PHI) was synthesized in Na-K form, ion exchanged with NH4NO3 and compared with its natural counterpart. Zeolites were then characterized before and after ion exchange by X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence, Thermogravimetric analysis and scanning electron microscopy. Ammonium exchanged Phillipsites were introduced as a soil amendment (2, 4 and 8% zeolite to soil loadings) to study the growth of maize (Zea mays) and compared with a control comprising NPK fertilizer added to soil. The affinity of the zeolite mineral Phillipsite for NH4+ in the presence of other cations is demonstrated by soil nutrient status. Results demonstrated that synthetic Phillipsite had a very high affinity towards NH4+ when introduced as a soil amendment, compared with its natural counterpart. Results were promising for ion exchange reactions in a zeolite-soil system, whereby cations present in soil exchanged for K+ more freely than NH4+ present in the synthetic Phillipsite framework.
    • High temperature (HT) polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFC) A review

      Chandan, Amrit; Hattenberger, Mariska; El-kharouf, Ahmad; Du, Shangfeng; Dhir, Aman; Self, Valerie; Pollet, Bruno G; Ingram, Andrew; Bujalski, Waldemar (Elsevier, 2013-01-28)
      One possible solution of combating issues posed by climate change is the use of the High Temperature (HT) Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEM) Fuel Cell (FC) in some applications. The typical HT-PEMFC operating temperatures are in the range of 100–200 °C which allows for co-generation of heat and power, high tolerance to fuel impurities and simpler system design. This paper reviews the current literature concerning the HT-PEMFC, ranging from cell materials to stack and stack testing. Only acid doped PBI membranes meet the US DOE (Department of Energy) targets for high temperature membranes operating under no humidification on both anode and cathode sides (barring the durability). This eliminates the stringent requirement for humidity however, they have many potential drawbacks including increased degradation, leaching of acid and incompatibility with current state-of-the-art fuel cell materials. In this type of fuel cell, the choice of membrane material determines the other fuel cell component material composition, for example when using an acid doped system, the flow field plate material must be carefully selected to take into account the advanced degradation. Novel research is required in all aspects of the fuel cell components in order to ensure that they meet stringent durability requirements for mobile applications.
    • High-temperature oxidation and erosion of HVOF sprayed NiCrSiB/Al2O3 and NiCrSiB/WC Co coatings

      Praveen, Ayyappan Susila; Arjunan, Arun (Elsevier, 2021-11-02)
      Material deterioration due to erosion and oxidation in high-temperature environments is a major cause of wear in power plants, aircraft engines and petrochemical industries. NiCrSiB based surface coatings using thermal spray techniques such as High-Velocity Oxy-Fuel (HVOF) offer a cost-effective route to improve the tribological properties for a range of substrate materials. The study investigates the high-temperature oxidation and erosion resistance of HVOF coated NiCrSiB reinforced with Al2O3 and WC single bond Co on SS304 stainless steel substrate. The oxidation kinetics and erosion responses of the coatings at 750 °C were evaluated for a period of 160 hrs and the coating microstructure, morphology and chemical compositions characterised. A total of three coating compositions were studied namely: NiCrSiB/Al2O3, NiCrSiB/n-Al2O3 and NiCrSiB/WC single bond Co where the results indicate a superior oxidation and erosion resistance in all cases in comparison to uncoated SS304. However, it was found that the NiCrSiB reinforced with micro-structured Al2O3 outperformed all the other coatings in terms of oxidation resistance. When it comes to erosion resistance, NiCrSiB/WC single bond Co was found to demonstrate the highest performance.
    • High-throughput screening platforms in the discovery of novel drugs for neurodegenerative diseases

      Aldewachi, H; Al-Zidan, RN; Conner, MT; Salman, MM (MDPI, 2021-02-23)
      Neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) are incurable and debilitating conditions that result in progressive degeneration and/or death of nerve cells in the central nervous system (CNS). Identification of viable therapeutic targets and new treatments for CNS disorders and in particular, for NDDs is a major challenge in the field of drug discovery. These difficulties can be attributed to the diversity of cells involved, extreme complexity of the neural circuits, the limited capacity for tissue regeneration, and our incomplete understanding of the underlying pathological processes. Drug discovery is a complex and multidisciplinary process. The screening attrition rate in current drug discovery protocols mean that only one viable drug may arise from millions of screened compounds resulting in the need to improve discovery technologies and protocols to address the multiple causes of attrition. This has identified the need to screen larger libraries where the use of efficient high-throughput screening (HTS) becomes key in the discovery process. HTS can investigate hun-dreds of thousands of compounds per day. However, if fewer compounds could be screened without compromising the probability of success, the cost and time would be largely reduced. To that end, recent advances in computer-aided design, in silico libraries, and molecular docking software combined with the upscaling of cell-based platforms have evolved to improve screening efficiency with higher predictability and clinical applicability. We review, here, the increasing role of HTS in contemporary drug discovery processes, in particular for NDDs, and evaluate the criteria underlying its successful application. We also discuss the requirement of HTS for novel NDD therapies and examine the major current challenges in validating new drug targets and developing new treatments for NDDs.
    • Histology of the suprapubic and anogenital cutaneous glands in male cotton-top tamarins (Saguinus oedipus)

      Fontani, Sara; Tanteri, Gianfranco; Vaglio, Stefano; Delfino, Giovanni; Moggi-Cecchi, Jacopo (Karger, 2014-03-16)
      In cotton top tamarins (Saguinus oedipus), scent glands have been mostly studied in females from museum collections. This work aims to extend the investigation to male specimens, introducing a novel source of skin samples. Two adult males from zoo populations, one intact and one castrated, were immediately frozen after natural death. Skin samples were later collected at the thawing onset, soaked with cold fixative and processed for light microscopy. Sebaceous units of scent glands showed phasic secretory activity in the intact male and marked fibrosis in the castrated male. It appears, therefore, that light microscopy samples from frozen tissues provide detailed features that can disclose distinctive traits in specimens characterized by different hormonal balances.
    • Homeostasis and function of regulatory T cells (Tregs) in vivo: Lessons from TCR-transgenic Tregs

      Attridge, K; Walker, LSK; Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK. (Wiley, 2014-01-01)
      The identification of CD25 and subsequently Forkhead box protein 3 (Foxp3) as markers for regulatory T cells (Tregs) has revolutionized our ability to explore this population experimentally. In a similar vein, our understanding of antigen-specific Treg responses in vivo owes much to the fortuitous generation of T-cell receptor (TCR)-transgenic Tregs. This has permitted tracking of Tregs with a defined specificity in vivo, facilitating analysis of how encounter with cognate antigen shapes Treg homeostasis and function. Here, we review the key lessons learned from a decade of analysis of TCR-transgenic Tregs and set this in the broader context of general progress in the field. Use of TCR-transgenic Tregs has led to an appreciation that Tregs are a highly dynamic proliferative population in vivo, rather than an anergic population as they were initially portrayed. It is now clear that Treg homeostasis is positively regulated by encounter with self-antigen expressed on peripheral tissues, which is likely to be relevant to the phenomenon of peripheral repertoire reshaping that has been described for Tregs and the observation that the Treg TCR specificities vary by anatomical location. Substantial evidence has also accumulated to support the role of CD28 costimulation and interleukin-2 in Treg homeostasis. The availability of TCR-transgenic Tregs has enabled analysis of Treg populations that are sufficient or deficient in particular genes, without the comparison being confounded by repertoire alterations. This approach has yielded insights into genes required for Treg function in vivo, with particular progress being made on the role of ctla-4 in this context. As the prospect of manipulating Treg populations in the clinic becomes reality, a full appreciation of the rules governing their homeostasis will prove increasingly important. © 2014 The Authors. Immunological Reviews Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
    • How are encyclopedias cited in academic research? Wikipedia, Britannica, Baidu Baike, and Scholarpedia

      Li, Xuemei; Thelwall, Mike; Mohammadi, Ehsan (Ediciones Profesionales de la Informacion SL, 2021-09-09)
      <jats:p>Encyclopedias are sometimes cited by scholarly publications, despite concerns about their credibility as sources for academic information. This study investigates trends from 2002 to 2020 in citing two crowdsourced and two expert-based encyclopedias to investigate whether they fit differently into the research landscape: Wikipedia, Britannica, Baidu Baike, and Scholarpedia. This is the first systematic comparison of the uptake of four major encyclopedias within academic research. Scopus searches were used to count the number of documents citing the four encyclopedias in each year. Wikipedia was by far the most cited encyclopedia, with up to 1% of Scopus documents citing it in Computer Science. Citations to Wikipedia increased exponentially until 2010, then slowed down and started to decrease. Both the Britannica and Scholarpedia citation rates were increasing in 2020, however. Disciplinary and national differences include Britannica being popular in Arts and Humanities, Scholarpedia in Neuroscience, and Baidu Baike in Chinese-speaking countries/territories. The results confirm that encyclopedias have minor value for academic research, often for background and definitions, with the most suitable one varying between fields and countries, and with the first evidence that the popularity of crowdsourced encyclopedias may be waning.</jats:p>
    • How common are explicit research questions in journal articles?

      Thelwall, Michael; Mas-Bleda, Amalia (MIT Press, 2020-12-01)
      Although explicitly labelled research questions seem to be central to some fields, others do not need them. This may confuse authors, editors, readers and reviewers of multidisciplinary research. This article assesses the extent to which research questions are explicitly mentioned in 17 out of 22 areas of scholarship from 2000 to 2018 by searching over a million full-text open access journal articles. Research questions were almost never explicitly mentioned (under 2%) by articles in engineering, physical, life and medical sciences, and were the exception (always under 20%) for the broad fields in which they were least rare: computing, philosophy, theology and social sciences. Nevertheless, research questions were increasingly mentioned explicitly in all fields investigated, despite a rate of 1.8% overall (1.1% after correcting for irrelevant matches). Other terminology for an article’s purpose may be more widely used instead, including aims, objectives, goals, hypotheses, and purposes, although no terminology occurs in a majority of articles in any broad field tested. Authors, editors, readers and reviewers should therefore be aware that the use of explicitly labelled research questions or other explicit research purpose terminology is non-standard in most or all broad fields, although it is becoming less rare. Keywords: Research purpose statements; research article structures; research questions; research aims; research goals.
    • How does nursing research differ internationally? A bibliometric analysis of six countries

      Thelwall, Michael; Mas-Bleda, Amalia (Wiley-Blackwell, 2020-06-30)
      Background: International nursing research comparisons can give a new perspective on a nation’s output by identifying strengths and weaknesses. Aim: This article compares strengths in nursing research between six mainly English-speaking nations (Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom, and United States). Methods: Journal authorship (percentage first authorship by nationality) and article keywords were compared for Scopus-indexed journal articles 2008-18. Three natural language processing strategies were assessed for identifying statistically significant international differences in the use of key words or phrases. Results: Journal author nationality was not a good indicator of international differences in research specialisms, but key word and phrase differences were more promising especially if both are used. For this, the Part Of Speech tagging and Lemmatisation text processing strategies were helpful but not Named Entity Recognition. The results highlight aspects of nursing research that were absent in some countries, such as papers about nursing administration and management. Conclusion: Researchers outside the USA should consider the importance of researching specific patient groups, diseases, treatments, skills, research methods, and social perspectives for unresearched gaps with national relevance. From a methods perspective, key word and phrase differences are useful to reveal international differences in nursing research topics.