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  • A Wireless Sensor Network Border Monitoring System: Deployment Issues and Routing Protocols

    Newman, Robert; Hammoudeh, Mohammad; Al-Fayez, Fayez; Lloyd, Huw; Adebisi, Bamidele; Abuarqoub, Abdelrahman; University of Wolverhampton, Manchester Metropolitan University (IEEE, 2017-02-20)
    External border surveillance is critical to the security of every state and the challenges it poses are changing and likely to intensify. Wireless sensor networks (WSN) are a low cost technology that provide an intelligence-led solution to effective continuous monitoring of large, busy, and complex landscapes. The linear network topology resulting from the structure of the monitored area raises challenges that have not been adequately addressed in the literature to date. In this paper, we identify an appropriate metric to measure the quality of WSN border crossing detection. Furthermore, we propose a method to calculate the required number of sensor nodes to deploy in order to achieve a specified level of coverage according to the chosen metric in a given belt region, while maintaining radio connectivity within the network. Then, we contribute a novel cross layer routing protocol, called levels division graph (LDG), designed specifically to address the communication needs and link reliability for topologically linear WSN applications. The performance of the proposed protocol is extensively evaluated in simulations using realistic conditions and parameters. LDG simulation results show significant performance gains when compared with its best rival in the literature, dynamic source routing (DSR). Compared with DSR, LDG improves the average end-to-end delays by up to 95%, packet delivery ratio by up to 20%, and throughput by up to 60%, while maintaining comparable performance in terms of normalized routing load and energy consumption.
  • Information extraction from sensor networks using the Watershed transform algorithm

    Newman, Robert; Hammoudeh, Mohammad; University of Wolverhampton, Manchester Metropolitan University (Elsevier, 2015-03)
    Wireless sensor networks are an effective tool to provide fine resolution monitoring of the physical environment. Sensors generate continuous streams of data, which leads to several computational challenges. As sensor nodes become increasingly active devices, with more processing and communication resources, various methods of distributed data processing and sharing become feasible. The challenge is to extract information from the gathered sensory data with a specified level of accuracy in a timely and power-efficient approach. This paper presents a new solution to distributed information extraction that makes use of the morphological Watershed algorithm. The Watershed algorithm dynamically groups sensor nodes into homogeneous network segments with respect to their topological relationships and their sensing-states. This setting allows network programmers to manipulate groups of spatially distributed data streams instead of individual nodes. This is achieved by using network segments as programming abstractions on which various query processes can be executed. Aiming at this purpose, we present a reformulation of the global Watershed algorithm. The modified Watershed algorithm is fully asynchronous, where sensor nodes can autonomously process their local data in parallel and in collaboration with neighbouring nodes. Experimental evaluation shows that the presented solution is able to considerably reduce query resolution cost without scarifying the quality of the returned results. When compared to similar purpose schemes, such as “Logical Neighborhood”, the proposed approach reduces the total query resolution overhead by up to 57.5%, reduces the number of nodes involved in query resolution by up to 59%, and reduces the setup convergence time by up to 65.1%.
  • Depression and state anxiety scores during assisted reproductive treatment are associated with outcome: a meta-analysis

    Purewal, Satvinder; Chapman, Sarah; van den Akker, O. B. A; University of Wolverhampton (2018-04)
    This meta-analysis investigated whether state anxiety and depression scores during assisted reproductive technology (ART) treatment and changes in state anxiety and depression scores between baseline and during ART treatment are associated with treatment outcomes. PubMed, PsycInfo, Embase, ScienceDirect, Web of Science and Scopus were searched for studies to include in the meta-analysis. Meta-analytic data were analysed using random effects models to estimate standardised mean differences. 11 studies (2202 patients) were included. Women who achieved a pregnancy had significantly lower depression scores during treatment than women who did not become pregnant -0.302 (95% CI: -0.551 - -0.054, z = -2.387, p = 0.017; I2= 77.142%, p = 0.001). State anxiety scores were also lower in women who became pregnant -0.335 (95% CI: -0.582 - -0.087: z=-2.649, p=0.008; I2 =81.339%, p = 0.001). However, changes in state anxiety (d=-0.056; 95% CI: -0.195 - 0.082, z = -0.794; I2= 0.00%) and depression scores (d=-0.106; 95% CI: -0.296 - 0.085, z = -1.088; I2= 0.00%) from baseline to treatment were not associated with ART outcomes. Clinics should aim to promote better psychosocial care for patients to help them manage the psychological and physical demands ART treatment, giving realistic expectations.
  • Intracellular Target-Specific Accretion of Cell Penetrating Peptides and Bioportides: Ultrastructural and Biological Correlates

    Jones, Sarah; Uusna, Julia; Langel, Ülo; Howl, John; Research Institute in Healthcare Science, Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Wolverhampton, Wulfruna Street, Wolverhampton, WV1 1LY, United Kingdom; Institute of Technology, University of Tartu, Nooruse 1, 50411, Tartu, Estonia; Institute of Technology, University of Tartu, Nooruse 1, 50411, Tartu, Estonia; Research Institute in Healthcare Science, Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Wolverhampton, Wulfruna Street, Wolverhampton, WV1 1LY, United Kingdom (American Chemical Society, 2015-12-14)
    Cell penetrating peptide (CPP) technologies provide a viable strategy to regulate the activities of intracellular proteins that may be intractable to other biological agents. In particular, the cationic helical domains of proteins have proven to be a reliable source of proteomimetic bioportides, CPPs that modulate the activities of intracellular proteins. In this study we have employed live cell imaging confocal microscopy to determine the precise intracellular distribution of a chemically diverse set of CPPs and bioportides. Our findings indicate that, following efficient cellular entry, peptides are usually accreted at intracellular sites rather than being freely maintained in an aqueous cytosolic environment. The binding of CPPs to proteins in a relatively stable manner provides a molecular explanation for our findings. By extension, it is probable that many bioportides influence biological processes through a dominant-negative influence upon discrete protein–protein interactions. As an example, we report that bioportides derived from the leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 discretely influence the biology and stability of this key therapeutic target in Parkinson’s disease. The intracellular site-specific accretion of CPPs and bioportides can also be readily modulated by the attachment of larger cargoes or, more conveniently, short homing motifs. We conclude that site-specific intracellular targeting could be further exploited to expand the scope of CPP technologies.

    Purewal, Satvinder; Chapman, Sarah; van den Akker, Olga; University of Wolverhampton (Springer, 2017)
  • Autoimmunity and COPD: clinical implications.

    Caramori, Gaetano; Ruggeri, Paolo; Di Stefano, Antonino; Mumby, Sharon; Girbino, Giuseppe; Adcock, Ian M; Kirkham, Paul (Elsevier, 2017-11-07)
    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Long term cigarette smoking is the cause of more than 90% of COPD in Westernized countries. However, only a fraction of chronic heavy smokers develop symptomatic COPD by the age of 80 years. COPD is characterized by an abnormal immune response in the lower airways and its progression is associated with infiltration of the lung by innate and adaptive inflammatory immune cells that form lymphoid follicles. There is growing evidence that both cellular- and antibody-mediated autoimmunity has a fundamental role in the pathogenesis of stable COPD. In particular, carbonyl-modified proteins may help to drive autoimmunity in COPD and to cause the characteristic small airways abnormalities and even contribute to the pathogenesis of pulmonary emphysema. Although direct, indirect, and circumstantial evidence of a role for autoimmunity in stable COPD patients has been identified, no cause-and-effect relationship between autoimmunity and the mechanisms of COPD has been firmly established in man. As such the potential contribution of an autoimmune response to the pathogenesis of COPD exacerbation is still being investigated and represents an area of active research. Many drugs targeting autoimmune responses are already available and the results of controlled clinical trials are awaited with great interest. The potential for measuring specific serum autoantibodies as biomarkers to predict clinical phenotypes or progression of stable COPD is promising.
  • Environmental pollution, neurodevelopment and cognitive impairment

    Chen, Ruoling; Roberts, Nicholas. (Nova Science Publishers, Inc, 2014-04)
  • Evidence that Differences in Fructosamine-3-Kinase Activity May be Associated with the Glycation Gap in Human Diabetes

    Dunmore, Simon J; Al-Derawi, Amr S; Nayak, Ananth U; Narshi, Aruna; Nevill, Alan M; Hellwig, Anne; Majebi, Andrew; Kirkham, Paul; Brown, James E; Singh, Baldev M (American Diabetes Association, 2017-10-24)
    The phenomenon of a discrepancy between glycated haemoglobin levels and other indicators of average glycaemia may be due to many factors but can be measured as the glycation gap (GGap). This GGap is associated with differences in complications in patients with diabetes and may possibly be explained by dissimilarities in deglycation in turn leading to altered production of Advanced Glycation End (AGE) products. We hypothesised that variations in the level of the deglycating enzyme Fructosamine-3-kinase (FN3K) might be associated with the GGap. We measured erythrocyte FN3K concentrations and enzyme activity in a population dichotomised for a large positive or negative GGap. FN3K protein was higher and we found a striking 3-fold greater activity (323%) at any given FN3K protein level in the erythrocytes of the negative compared with positive GGap groups. This was associated with lower AGE levels in the negative GGap group (79%), lower pro-inflammatory adipokines (Leptin/Adiponectin ratio) (73%) and much lower pro-thrombotic PAI-1 levels (19%). We conclude that FN3K may play a key role in the GGap and thus diabetes complications such that FN3K may be potential predictor of the risk of diabetes complications. Pharmacological modifications of its activity may provide a novel approach to their prevention.
  • Metabolic re-patterning in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease airway smooth muscle cells

    Michaeloudes, Charalambos; Kuo, Chih-Hsi; Haji, Gulam; Finch, Donna; Halayko, Andrew J; Kirkham, Paul; Chung, Kian Fan; Adcock, Ian M (European Respiratory Society, 2017-11-30)
    COPD airways are characterised by airway smooth muscle (ASM) thickening, partly due to ASM cell (ASMC) hyperplasia. Metabolic reprogramming involving increased glycolysis and glutamine catabolism supports the biosynthetic and redox balance required for cellular growth. We examined whether COPD ASMCs show a distinct metabolic phenotype that may contribute to increased growth. We performed an exploratory intracellular metabolic profile analysis of ASMCs from healthy non-smokers, healthy smokers and COPD patients, under unstimulated or growth conditions of transforming growth factor (TGF)-β and fetal bovine serum (FBS). COPD ASMCs showed impaired energy balance and accumulation of the glycolytic product lactate, glutamine, fatty acids and amino acids compared to controls in unstimulated and growth conditions. Fatty acid oxidation capacity was reduced under unstimulated conditions. TGF-β/FBS-stimulated COPD ASMCs showed restoration of fatty acid oxidation capacity, up-regulation of the pentose phosphate pathway product ribose-5- phosphate and of nucleotide biosynthesis intermediates, and increased levels of the glutamine catabolite glutamate. TGF-β/FBS-stimulated COPD ASMCs also showed a higher reduced to oxidised glutathione ratio and lower mitochondrial oxidant levels. Inhibition of glycolysis, and glutamine depletion attenuated TGF-β/FBS-stimulated growth of COPD ASMCs. Changes in glycolysis, glutamine and fatty acid metabolism may lead to increased biosynthesis and redox balance, supporting COPD ASMC growth.