Κυριακή, 26 Ιουνίου 2016

The new issue is now available.Journal of Japan Association for Earthquake Engineering

The English Issue

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The new issue is now available.Journal of Environmental Chemistry

Vol.25 No.4

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The new issue is now available.Educational Studies in Japan

Vol.10

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The new issue is now available.Educational Studies in Japan

Vol.9

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Nominal Performance of Future Dual Frequency Dual Constellation GBAS

In this work an overview of numerous possible processing modes in future dual frequency, dual constellation GBAS is given and compared to the current GAST D standard. We discuss the individual error contributions to GBAS protection levels and give an overview of the general processing. Based on this the consequences when adding a second constellation as well as frequency are investigated. Geometrical implications and changes to the residual differential error bounds are studied separately first. In terms of geometry a comparison between the single and dual constellation case is presented using dilution of precision as metric. The influence on the different sigma contributions when using new satellites (Galileo) and signals (E1, L5, and E5a) is individually discussed based on recent measurements. Final simulations for different varying parameters are carried out to compare relevant processing modes in terms of achieved nominal protection levels. A concluding discussion compares the outcomes and analyzes the implications of choosing one or the other mode.

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The Effect of Teriparatide on Fracture Healing of Osteoporotic Patients: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

Purpose. This meta-analysis is to assess the effectiveness of teriparatide in fracture healing and clinical function improvement of the osteoporotic patients. Methods. We searched PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, and the Cochrane databases for randomized and quasi-randomized controlled trials comparing teriparatide to placebo, no treatment, or comparator interventions in the osteoporotic patients. Results. Five studies with 251 patients were included. Patients treated with teriparatide therapy had a significant shorter radiological fracture healing time compared with those in the control group (mean difference [MD] −4.54 days, 95% confidence interval [CI] −8.80 to −0.28). Stratified analysis showed that lower limb group had significant shorter healing time (MD −6.24 days, 95% CI −7.20 to −5.29), but upper limb group did not (MD −1 days, 95% CI −2.02 to 0.2). Patients treated with teriparatide therapy showed better functional outcome than those in the control group (standardized mean difference [SMD] −1.02, 95% CI −1.81 to −0.22). Patients with therapy duration over 4 weeks would have better functional outcome (SMD −1.68, 95% CI −2.07 to −1.29). Conclusions. Teriparatide is effective in accelerating fracture healing and improving functional outcome of osteoporotic women. However, more clinical studies are warranted in order to determine whether the results are applicable to males and the clinical indications for teriparatide after osteoporotic fractures.

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Relevance of 3D Cholangiography and Transient Elastography to Assess Cystic Fibrosis-Associated Liver Disease?

Background. Cystic fibrosis-associated liver disease (CFLD) is a major cause of death. The objective of our retrospective study was to describe the relevance of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and liver stiffness measurement (LSM) for CFLD evaluation. Methods. All cystic fibrosis adult patients evaluated by MRI and LSM were included. MR signs of portal hypertension (PHT), dysmorphia, or cholangitis were collected and LSM expressed in kPa and Metavir. Results. Of 25 patients, 52% had abnormal MRI. Median LSM was 5.7 kPa (3.4–9.9). Three patients had F2 score and one had F3 score. In patients with PHT, LSM was 7.85 kPa (3.7–9.9) compared to 5 (3.4–7.5) in others, . In patients with abnormal liver function tests, 50% had increased LSM (≥F2), whereas 94% with normal tests had normal LSM (). Seven patients had abnormal MRI despite normal ultrasonography. Conclusions. MRI and LSM provide useful information on CFLD and may help to screen patients with PHT.

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MicroRNA-21 Promotes Proliferation of Fibroblast-Like Synoviocytes through Mediation of NF-κB Nuclear Translocation in a Rat Model of Collagen-Induced Rheumatoid Arthritis

MicroRNA-21 (miR-21) is overexpressed in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). This study was designed to investigate the effect and mechanism of miR-21 on cell proliferation in fibroblast-like synoviocytes (FLS) of RA. FLS were primary-cultured from a rat RA model. RA-FLS and normal FLS were infected with lentivirus (anti-miR-21 or pro-miR-21) for overexpression or downregulation of miR-21, respectively. The effects of miR-21 overexpression or inhibition on nucleoprotein NF-κB levels and FLS cell proliferation were evaluated by western blotting and MTT assays. The effects of an inhibitor of NF-κB nuclear translocation (BAY 11-7082) were also evaluated. The results showed that the levels of miR-21 and nucleoprotein NF-κB were increased in FLS of RA model rats compared to the control group. Downregulation of miR-21 in RA FLS led to a significant decrease in nucleoprotein NF-κB levels and cell proliferation rates compared to the antinegative control (NC) group. However, miR-21 overexpression in normal FLS resulted in a significant increase of nucleoprotein NF-κB levels and cell proliferation rates compared to the pro-NC group. The effects of miR-21 overexpression were reversed by BAY 11-7082. We concluded that upregulated miR-21 in FLS in RA model rats may promote cell proliferation by facilitating NF-κB nuclear translocation, thus affecting the NF-κB pathway.

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Management of a Low-Energy Penetrating Brain Injury Caused by a Nail

Low-energy penetrating nail injury to the brain is an extremely rare neurosurgical emergency. The most common cause of nail gun injury is work related accidents; other causes result from accidental firing of a nail gun, suicide attempts by firing nail guns into the brain, and bomb blasts containing pieces of nails. Neurosurgical treatment performed by craniotomy still seems to be the safest one; there are reports of complications such as subdural hematoma and intraparenchymal hemorrhages following the blind removal of foreign bodies leading to suggestions that all penetrating foreign bodies should be removed under direct vision. We report a rarely described neurosurgical approach for removal of a penetrating nail from the brain and skull without evidence of associated hematoma and other brain lesions.

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Tau-Centric Targets and Drugs in Clinical Development for the Treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease

The failure of several Phase II/III clinical trials in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) with drugs targeting β-amyloid accumulation in the brain fuelled an increasing interest in alternative treatments against tau pathology, including approaches targeting tau phosphatases/kinases, active and passive immunization, and anti-tau aggregation. The most advanced tau aggregation inhibitor (TAI) is methylthioninium (MT), a drug existing in equilibrium between a reduced (leuco-methylthioninium) and oxidized form (MT+). MT chloride (methylene blue) was investigated in a 24-week Phase II clinical trial in 321 patients with mild to moderate AD that failed to show significant positive effects in mild AD patients, although long-term observations (50 weeks) and biomarker studies suggested possible benefit. The dose of 138 mg/day showed potential benefits on cognitive performance of moderately affected AD patients and cerebral blood flow in mildly affected patients. Further clinical evidence will come from the large ongoing Phase III trials for the treatment of AD and the behavioral variant of frontotemporal dementia on a new form of this TAI, more bioavailable and less toxic at higher doses, called TRx0237. More recently, inhibitors of tau acetylation are being actively pursued based on impressive results in animal studies obtained by salsalate, a clinically used derivative of salicylic acid.

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Pelvic Myxoid Leiomyoma Mass between Vagina and Rectum

Leiomyomas are the most common pelvic tumors in women. About 20–30% of women older than 35 are affected. Rare conditions of leiomyomas have extrauterine locations. Myxoid degeneration is a rare type of leiomyoma degeneration. We report a case of solid-cystic myxoid leiomyoma in a 53-year-old woman complained of constipation, urinary hesitation, and malodorous vaginal discharge with palpable  cm mass between vagina and rectum. Regarding the inferior location of the mass, a perineal approach was used to enucleate it. This rare location has not been mentioned before. The woman was finally diagnosed by pathologists which was myxoid leiomyoma.

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Effect of Methanol on Viscosity of Aqueous Solutions of Cationic Surfactants at 298.15 to 323.15 K

Viscosity measurements have been made to the solutions of dodecyltrimethylammonium bromide (DTAB) and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) in 0.10, 0.20, 0.30, and 0.40 volume fractions of methanol in methanol-water mixed solvent media at 298.15, 308.15, 318.15, and 323.25 K. Critical micelle concentration (CMC) values have been determined. From relative viscosity for surfactant solutions, related viscosity B coefficients are calculated and the values are interpreted in terms of solute-solvent interactions.

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Effect of Water-Glass Coating on HA and HA-TCP Samples for MSCs Adhesion, Proliferation, and Differentiation

Ca-P and silicon based materials have become very popular as bone tissue engineering materials. In this study, water-glass (also known as sodium silicate glass) was coated on sintered hydroxyapatite (HA) and HA-TCP (TCP stands for tricalcium phosphate) samples and subsequently heat-treated at 600°C for 2 hrs. X-rays diffraction showed the presence of β- and α-TCP phases along with HA in the HA-TCP samples. Samples without coating, with water-glass coating, and heat-treated after water-glass coating were used to observe the adhesion and proliferation response of bone marrow derived-mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Cell culture was carried out for 4 hrs, 1 day, and 7 days. Interestingly, all samples showed similar response for cell adhesion and proliferation up to 7-day culture but fibronectin, E-cadherin, and osteogenic differentiation related genes (osteocalcin and osteopontin) were significantly induced in heat-treated water-glass coated HA-TCP samples. A water-glass coating on Ca-P samples was not found to influence the cell proliferation response significantly but activated some extracellular matrix genes and induced osteogenic differentiation in the MSCs.

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Synchronization for a Class of Uncertain Fractional Order Chaotic Systems with Unknown Parameters Using a Robust Adaptive Sliding Mode Controller

This paper deals with the synchronization of a class of fractional order chaotic systems with unknown parameters and external disturbance. Based on the Lyapunov stability theory, a fractional order sliding mode is constructed and a controller is proposed to realize chaos synchronization. The presented method not only realizes the synchronization of the considered chaotic systems but also enhances the robustness of sliding mode synchronization. Finally, some simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness and robustness of the proposed method.

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Maternal Feeding Styles and Food Parenting Practices as Predictors of Longitudinal Changes in Weight Status in Hispanic Preschoolers from Low-Income Families

Objective. The aim was to investigate the influence of feeding styles and food parenting practices on low-income children’s weight status over time. Method. Participants were 129 Latina parents and their Head Start children participating in a longitudinal study. Children were assessed at baseline (4 to 5 years old) and again eighteen months later. At each time point, parents completed questionnaires and height and weight measures were taken on the child. Results. The indulgent feeding style (parent-report at baseline) was associated with increased child BMI -score eighteen months later compared to other feeding styles. Authoritative, authoritarian, and uninvolved feeding styles were not significantly associated with increased child BMI -score. Child BMI -score at Time 1 (strongest) and maternal acculturation were positive predictors of child BMI -score at Time 2. Maternal use of restriction positively predicted and maternal monitoring negatively predicted Time 2 BMI -score, but only when accounting for feeding styles. Conclusion. This is the first study to investigate the impact of feeding styles on child weight status over time. Results suggest that indulgent feeding predicts later increases in children’s weight status. The interplay between feeding styles and food parenting practices in influencing child weight status needs to be further explored.

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First-Episode of Synthetic Cannabinoid-Induced Psychosis in a Young Adult, Successfully Managed with Hospitalization and Risperidone

Synthetic cannabinoids- (SCs-) induced psychosis is a growing public health concern. It leads to significant impairment, including emotional distress, difficulty communicating, and other debilitating symptoms. In this case report, we discuss a patient with no previous history of psychotic symptoms, presenting with first-episode psychosis in the context of progressive, acutely worsening, disorganized, psychotic thoughts and behaviors following prolonged use of SCs. We also discuss relevant literature on SCs-induced psychosis, highlighting its prevalence, presentation, diagnosis, and recommended management. It is important to diagnose and treat SCs-induced psychosis as early and efficiently as possible, in order to alleviate symptoms while limiting functional impairment and emotional distress to the patient.

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Effects of a Multispecies Probiotic Mixture on Glycemic Control and Inflammatory Status in Women with Gestational Diabetes: A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial

Objective. This trial aims to examine the effects of a Probiotic Mixture (VSL#3) on glycemic status and inflammatory markers, in women with GDM. Materials and Methods. Over a period of 8 weeks, 82 women with gestational diabetes were randomly assigned to either an intervention group () which were given VSL#3 capsule or to a control group which were given placebo capsule (). Fasting plasma glucose, homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance, glycosylated hemoglobin, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-6, Interferon gamma, and interleukin-10 were measured before and after the intervention. Results. After 8 wk of supplementation FPG, HbA1c, HOMA-IR, and insulin levels remained unchanged in the probiotic and placebo groups. The comparison between the two groups showed no significant differences with FPG and HbA1c, but there were significant differences in insulin levels and HOMA-IR (; , resp.). Unlike the levels of IFN-g (), there was a significant decrease in levels of IL-6 (), TNF-α (), and hs-CRP (). No significant increase was observed in IL-10 () in the intervention group as compared with the control group. Conclusions. In women with GDM, supplementation with probiotics (VSL#3) may help to modulate some inflammatory markers and may have benefits on glycemic control.

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An Advanced Control and Extensible Configuration for Static Var Generator

An extensible configuration is proposed for static var generator (SVG) with advanced controller included for reactive power compensation of grid. Compared with the traditional configurations, the major advantage of such system configuration is that the power modules are very flexible and easy to extend or reduce without changing the main equipment of SVG under the different voltage levels. Furthermore, in order to solve the problems of modeling uncertainty, nonlinearities, and outside disturbance by using proportion integration (PI) controller, an advanced controller is proposed based on auto disturbance rejection control (ADRC). By controlling the amount and direction of reactive current, the reactive power is generated or absorbed from SVG into power grid with fast response, which can realize the excellent dynamic compensation for both the internal and external interferences. Simulations results show that the proposed controller has better performance of the transient and steady state than PI controller. Moreover, the verification tests are executed in 380 V, 6.5 kVA experiment systems, suggesting that the excellent dynamic performance and strong robustness are achieved.

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Atypical Chest Pain: An Unusual Presentation of Spinal Metastasis due to Penile Carcinoma

Spinal metastases may present in a myriad of ways, most commonly back pain with or without neurology. We report an unusual presentation of isolated atypical chest pain preceding metastatic cord compression, secondary to penile carcinoma. Spinal metastasis from penile carcinoma is rare with few cases reported. This unusual presentation highlights the need for a heightened level of clinical suspicion for spinal metastases as a possible cause for chest pain in any patients with a history of carcinoma. The case is discussed with reference to the literature.

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Recurrent Interstitial Pneumonitis in a Patient with Entero-Behçet’s Disease Initially Treated with Mesalazine

A 65-year-old man with entero-Behçet’s disease (BD) being treated with mesalazine was presented to our hospital complaining of dyspnea. Computed tomography (CT) of the chest showed ground-glass opacities and he was initially diagnosed with mesalazine-induced interstitial pneumonitis (IP). Besides the discontinuation of mesalazine, a high dose of oral prednisolone was administered and the patient seemed to recover. However, four months later, dyspnea recurred and repeated CT revealed more extensive pulmonary infiltration despite steroid therapy. After the exclusion of infections, we suspected either a recurrence of mesalazine-induced IP or BD-related IP as a clinical manifestation of BD. The patient was treated with intravenous methylprednisolone and cyclophosphamide, followed by orally administered azathioprine, based on the assumption of underlying vasculitis. Thereafter, his condition improved. BD-related IP is an extremely rare condition with limited reports in the literature. Mesalazine-induced IP is also uncommon but the prognosis is generally good after discontinuation of mesalazine with or without steroid therapy. We discuss an extremely rare case, especially focusing on BD-related IP and mesalazine-induced IP as a potential cause of recurrent IP in a patient with entero-BD.

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Metastatic Breast Carcinoma to the Prostate Gland

Cancer of the male breast is an uncommon event with metastases to the breast occurring even less frequently. Prostate carcinoma has been reported as the most frequent primary to metastasize to the breast; however, the reverse has not been previously reported. Herein, we present, for the first time, a case of breast carcinoma metastasizing to the prostate gland. Prostate needle core biopsy revealed infiltrative nests of neoplastic epithelioid cells, demonstrated by immunohistochemistry (IHC) to be positive for GATA3 and ER and negative for PSA and P501S. A prostate cocktail by IHC study demonstrated lack of basal cells (p63 and CK903) and no expression of P501S. The patient’s previous breast needle core biopsy showed strong ER positivity and negative staining for PR and HER2. Similar to the prostate, the breast was negative for CK5/6, p63, and p40. This case demonstrates the importance of considering a broad differential diagnosis and comparing histology and IHC to prior known malignancies in the setting of atypical presentation or rare tumors.

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Pectoralis Minor Syndrome: Case Presentation and Review of the Literature

We present a case of a healthy young female with axillary vein compression caused by the pectoralis minor muscle. Diagnosis was made by clinical findings and dynamic venography. After pectoralis minor tenotomy, the patient had total resolution of her symptoms. Compression of the axillary vein by the pectoralis minor is a rare entity that needs a careful exam and imaging to reach its diagnosis and establish the appropriate treatment.

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Simultaneous Determination of Catalpol, Aucubin, and Geniposidic Acid in Different Developmental Stages of Rehmannia glutinosa Leaves by High Performance Liquid Chromatography

Although R. glutinosa roots are currently the only organ source in clinics, its leaves are a potential supplement for the roots especially in extraction of some important bioactive compounds. Our early work found that the contents of catalpol and total iridoid glycosides varied among different developmental stages of R. glutinosa leaves. Aucubin and geniposidic acid, the abundant major bioactive compounds in Eucommia ulmoides and Gardenia jasminoides, respectively, were found present in R. glutinosa roots, however, and have not been analyzed in its leaves. In this paper, we aimed to determine contents of these three iridoid glycosides in different developmental stages of R. glutinosa leaves using the optimized HPLC-UV conditions. Our results showed that aucubin and GPA in R. glutinosa leaves were much lower than catalpol and showed the increasing trend with the leaf development, which was different from catalpol. This work provided the important information for future exploitation of R. glutinosa leaves as a potential supplement for its roots in extraction of some important bioactive compounds and studying the relationship of aucubin and catalpol metabolism.

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First Case of Lung Abscess due to Salmonella enterica Serovar Abony in an Immunocompetent Adult Patient

In healthy individuals, nontyphoidal Salmonella species predominantly cause a self-limited form of gastroenteritis, while they infrequently invade or cause fatal disease. Extraintestinal manifestations of nontyphoidal Salmonella infections are not common and mainly occur among individuals with specific risk factors; among them, focal lung infection is a rare complication caused by nontyphoidal Salmonella strains typically occurring in immunocompromised patients with prior lung disease. We describe the first case of a localized lung abscess formation in an immunocompetent healthy female adult due to Salmonella enterica serovar Abony. The patient underwent lobectomy and was discharged after full clinical recovery. This case report highlights nontyphoidal Salmonellae infections as a potential causative agent of pleuropulmonary infections even in immunocompetent healthy adults.

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The Antimicrobial Photodynamic Therapy in the Treatment of Peri-Implantitis

Introduction. The aim of this study is to demonstrate the effectiveness of addition of the antimicrobial photodynamic therapy to the conventional approach in the treatment of peri-implantitis. Materials and Methods. Forty patients were randomly assigned to test or control groups. Patients were assessed at baseline and at six (T1), twelve (T2), and twenty-four (T3) weeks recording plaque index (PlI), probing pocket depth (PPD), and bleeding on probing (BOP); control group received conventional periodontal therapy, while test group received photodynamic therapy in addition to it. Result. Test group showed a 70% reduction in the plaque index values and a 60% reduction in PD values compared to the baseline. BOP and suppuration were not detectable. Control group showed a significative reduction in plaque index and PD. Discussion. Laser therapy has some advantages in comparison to traditional therapy, with faster and greater healing of the wound. Conclusion. Test group showed after 24 weeks a better value in terms of PPD, BOP, and PlI, with an average pocket depth value of 2 mm, if compared with control group (3 mm). Our results suggest that antimicrobial photodynamic therapy with diode laser and phenothiazine chloride represents a reliable adjunctive treatment to conventional therapy. Photodynamic therapy should, however, be considered a coadjuvant in the treatment of peri-implantitis associated with mechanical (scaling) and surgical (grafts) treatments.

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Growth, Development, and Water Consumption of Irrigated Bean Crop Related to Growing Degree-Days on Different Soil Tillage Systems in Southeast Brazil

Degree-days may be an alternative for predicting the influence of temperature on physiological aspects of plants in a changing climate. The objective of this research was to evaluate the relation between cumulative degree-days index () and the development, growth, and water consumption of irrigated bean under different soil tillage systems (STS). We developed an experiment in Southeast Brazil in plots managed with the following STS: chisel ploughing (CP), disk ploughing (DP), and revolving hoe (RH). The treatments did not influence the crop phenology when correlated to . The parameters of canopy ground cover, leaf area index, total dry matter, and the plant height presented a highly significant relationship with (). We also compared the results of field water balance with a simulation developed between the crop coefficient and and found a strong relationship ( = 0.93∗∗; ∗∗: high statistical significance ()) between these measurements and the model. The total water consumption measured at the irrigated bean crop reached 383 mm, 386 mm, and 375 mm while that simulated from dual crop coefficient approach based on reached 378 mm, 373 mm, and 349 mm to CP, DP, and RH, respectively, representing a mean difference of 4.2%.

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Monitoring of Glucose in Beer Brewing by a Carbon Nanotubes Based Nylon Nanofibrous Biosensor

This work presents the design, preparation, and characterization of a novel glucose electrochemical biosensor based on the immobilization of glucose oxidase (GOX) into a nylon nanofibrous membrane (NFM) prepared by electrospinning and functionalized with multiwalled carbon nanotubes (CNT). A disc of such GOX/CNT/NFM membrane (40 μm in thickness) was used for coating the surface of a glassy carbon electrode. The resulting biosensor was characterized by cyclic voltammetry and chronoamperometry, with ferrocene methanol as mediator. The binding of GOX around the CNT/NFM greatly enhances the electron transfer, which results in a biosensor with a current five times higher than without CNT. The potential usefulness of the proposed biosensor was demonstrated with the analysis of glucose in commercial beverages and along the monitoring of the brewing process for making beer, from the mashing to the fermentation steps.

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Histiocytic Sarcoma Associated with Coombs Negative Acute Hemolytic Anemia: A Rare Presentation

Histiocytic sarcoma (HS) rarely involves extranodal sites, such as the spleen. We report a unique pediatric case of massive splenomegaly and refractory Coombs negative hemolytic anemia (CNHA) secondary to HS. The CNHA resolved completely after an emergent splenectomy. Next generation sequencing (NGS) revealed novel ASXL1, PTPN11, KIT, and TP53 mutations, unmasking a clonal heterogeneity within the same neoplasm.

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The Effect of Patient Weight and Provider Training and Experience on Dosing of Rocuronium

Introduction. Maintenance dosing of neuromuscular blocking agents is complex and varies with patient, procedure, and clinical situation. With this in mind, we sought to identify factors impacting the maintenance dosing of neuromuscular blockers as a step toward identifying best practice with respect to minimizing residual neuromuscular blockade. Methods. Cases utilizing rocuronium from July 1, 2010, to June 30, 2014, at the sponsoring institution were analyzed. Using a mixed model to account for repeated measures, patients were analyzed by dose and weight category as defined by the World Health Organization (eight categories ranging from very severely underweight to very severely obese) as well as by the administering provider’s level of experience. Results. The study included 12,671 patients with a mean age of 49.7 (SD 16.7). Increasing weight category and higher levels of provider experience were associated with higher doses for rocuronium. There were no differences in initial dose or in frequency of maintenance dosing by weight category after controlling for case length. Discussion. The two dosing patterns identified, higher doses for overweight patients and higher doses administered by experienced providers, are modifiable factors that could enhance patient safety.

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Phytochemical, Antimicrobial, and Toxicological Evaluation of Traditional Herbs Used to Treat Sore Throat

The in vitro antibacterial activities of 29 traditional medicinal plants used in respiratory ailments were assessed on multidrug resistant Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria isolated from the sore throat patients and two reference strains. The methanolic, n-hexane, and aqueous extracts were screened by the agar well diffusion assay. Bioactive fractions of effective extracts were identified on TLC coupled with bioautography, while their toxicity was determined using haemolytic assay against human erythrocytes. Qualitative and quantitative phytochemical analysis of effective extracts was also performed. Methanolic extract of 18 plants showed antimicrobial activity against test strains. Adhatoda vasica (ZI = 17–21 mm, MIC: 7.12–62.5 μg/mL), Althaea officinalis (ZI = 16–20 mm, MIC: 15.62–31.25 μg/mL), Cordia latifolia (ZI = 16–20 mm, MIC: 12.62–62.5 μg/mL), Origanum vulgare (ZI = 20–22 mm, MIC: 3–15.62 μg/mL), Thymus vulgaris (ZI = 21–25 mm, MIC: 7.81–31.25 μg/mL), and Ziziphus jujuba (ZI = 14–20 mm, MIC: 7.81–31.25 μg/mL) showed significant antibacterial activity. Alkaloid fractions of Adhatoda vasica, Cordia latifolia, and Origanum vulgare and flavonoid fraction of the Althaea officinalis, Origanum vulgare, Thymus Vulgaris, and Ziziphus jujuba exhibited antimicrobial activity. Effective plant extracts show 0.93–0.7% erythrocyte haemolysis. The results obtained from this study provide a scientific rationale for the traditional use of these herbs and laid the basis for future studies to explore novel antimicrobial compounds.

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Radioprotective Effect of Grape Seed Proanthocyanidins In Vitro and In Vivo

We have demonstrated that grape seed proanthocyanidins (GSPs) could effectively scavenge hydroxyl radical () in a dose-dependent manner. Since most of the ionizing radiation- (IR-) induced injuries were caused by , this study was to investigate whether GSPs would mitigate IR-induced injuries in vitro and in vivo. We demonstrated that GSPs could significantly reduce IR-induced DNA strand breaks (DSBs) and apoptosis of human lymphocyte AHH-1 cells. This study also showed that GSPs could protect white blood cells (WBC) from IR-induced injuries, speed up the weight of mice back, and decrease plasma malondialdehyde (MDA), thus improving the survival rates of mice after ionizing radiation. It is suggested that GSPs have a potential as an effective and safe radioprotective agent.

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Sectorization and Configuration Transition in Airspace Design

Current airspace is sectorized according to some predefined rules that are not flexible. To facilitate utilizing the airspace more efficiently, methods to design sectors need to be promoted. In this paper, we propose an undirected graph cut-based approach that employs a memetic local search-embedded constrained evolution algorithm, NSGA-II, to generate nondominated airspace configurations. We also propose a new concave hull-based method to automatically depict sector boundaries. In addition, we also study the configuration transition problem. We define the similarity of the two different configurations and calculate their similarity with a bisection diagram and a minimum cost flow algorithm. We build a forward network to represent configuration transitions across several consecutive time periods and use multiobjective dynamic programming to determine a series of nondominated configuration links from the first period to the end. We test our approaches by simulation in high-altitude airspace controlled by Beijing Area Control Center. The results show that our sectorization method outperforms the current configuration in practice, providing a lower sector number, lower intersector flow, more balanced workload distribution among the different sectors, and no constraint violations, so that the proposed approach shows its significant potential as practical applications for dynamic airspace configuration.

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Fractured Ribs and the CT Funky Fat Sign of Diaphragmatic Rupture

Traumatic diaphragmatic rupture remains a diagnostic challenge for both radiologists and surgeons. In recent years, multidetector CT has markedly improved the diagnosis of diaphragmatic injury in polytrauma patients. Herein, we describe two cases of subacute presentation of traumatic diaphragmatic rupture from a penetrating rib fracture and subsequent intrathoracic herniation of omental fat, representing the CT “funky fat” sign.

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On Cluster -Algebras

We introduce a -algebra attached to the cluster and a quiver . If is the quiver coming from triangulation of the Riemann surface with a finite number of cusps, we prove that the primitive spectrum of times is homeomorphic to a generic subset of the Teichmüller space of surface . We conclude with an analog of the Tomita-Takesaki theory and the Connes invariant for the algebra .

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Relationship-Building Skills of Child-Rearing Mothers in Japanese Communities

This study elucidated the skills of mothers who used to build positive interpersonal relationships with people they met through child-rearing. The research method was qualitative descriptive study. The participants were 24 mothers who had children between ages of one and four years. These participants were recruited at child-rearing salons and childcare centers located in various municipalities in Japan. The survey period was from September 2013 to July 2014. The mothers’ interpersonal relationship-building skills were described by six categories: “ability to strive for new encounters,” “ability to try to interact socially with others,” “ability to choose compatible people,” “ability to continuously maintain good relationships,” “ability to take action suitable to a situation,” and “ability to build positive relationships with parents-in-law.” Cognitive aspects of assessing and understanding the interactions that occur during exchanges and behavioral aspects guided by these cognitions were identified within these skills. This study contributed to providing a framework to understand mothers’ interpersonal relationship-building skills for public health nurses involved in child-rearing support.

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Influence of Calcium Phosphate and Apatite Containing Products on Enamel Erosion

For the purpose of erosion prevention the present study aimed to compare the efficacy of two biomimetic products and a fluoride solution to optimize the protective properties of the pellicle. After 1 min of in situ pellicle formation on bovine enamel slabs, 8 subjects adopted CPP-ACP (GC Tooth Mousse), a mouthwash with hydroxyapatite microclusters (Biorepair), or a fluoride based mouthwash (elmex Kariesschutz) for 1 min each. Afterwards, samples were exposed in the oral cavity for 28 min. Native enamel slabs and slabs exposed to the oral cavity for 30 min without any rinse served as controls. After oral exposure, slabs were incubated in HCl (pH values 2, 2.3, and 3) for 120 s and kinetics of calcium and phosphate release were measured photometrically; representative samples were evaluated by SEM and TEM. The physiological pellicle reduced demineralization at all pH values; the protective effect was enhanced by fluoride. The biomimetic materials also reduced ion release but their effect was less pronounced. SEM indicated no layer formation after use of the different products. However, TEM confirmed the potential accumulation of mineral components at the pellicle surface. The tested products improve the protective properties of the in situ pellicle but not as effectively as fluorides.

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Transvaginal Hybrid NOTES Procedure for Treatment of Gallstone Ileus

Gallstone ileus is a rare mechanical bowel obstruction, and previously reported cases have been treated laparoscopically with good results. Although transvaginal hybrid NOTES without a minilaparotomy has been reported to decrease the incidence of surgical wound complications, to our knowledge, this procedure has not been used previously to treat gallstone ileus. We present a case of a 63-year-old woman who underwent transvaginal hybrid NOTES procedure for treatment of gallstone ileus. This case was admitted to our hospital following acute-onset abdominal pain and vomiting. We diagnosed gallstone ileus with cholecystoduodenal fistula by computed tomography and performed totally laparoscopic surgery using only three 5 mm abdominal ports with transvaginal specimen extraction and enterectomy. The patient’s postoperative course was uneventful, and laparoscopic cholecystectomy and fistula repair were performed 8 months after the initial surgery. The patient experienced additional pain relief and good cosmetic outcomes. In conclusion, using transvaginal hybrid NOTES may become a future option to minimize the invasiveness of other laparoscopic procedures.

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Aplasia Cutis Congenita of the Scalp with a Familial Pattern

Aplasia Cutis Congenita (ACC) is a condition characterized by congenital absence of skin, usually on the scalp. ACC can occur as an isolated condition or in the presence of other congenital anomalies. Here we describe a case of a 16-day-old baby girl with an isolated ACC of the scalp. Her elder two siblings have been diagnosed with ACC with concomitant cardiac or limb anomalies. The patient was managed conservatively until the defect has formed scar tissue 6 months later.

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Spontaneous Regression of Herniated Lumbar Disc with New Disc Protrusion in the Adjacent Level

Spontaneous regression of herniated lumbar discs was reported occasionally. The mechanisms proposed for regression of disc herniation are still incomplete. This paper describes and discusses a case of spontaneous regression of herniated lumbar discs with a new disc protrusion in the adjacent level. A 41-year-old man was admitted with radiating pain and numbness in the left lower extremity with a left posterolateral disc extrusion at L5-S1 level. He was admitted to hospital with low back pain due to disc herniation caudally immigrating at L4-5 level three years ago. He refused the surgical intervention that was offered and was treated conservatively at that time. He had no neurological deficit and a history of spontaneous regression of the extruded lumbar disc; so, a conservative therapy, including bed rest, physical therapy, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and analgesics, was advised. In conclusion, herniated lumbar disc fragments may regress spontaneously. Reports are prone to advise conservative treatment for extruded or sequestrated lumbar disc herniations. However, these patients should be followed up closely; new herniation at adjacent/different level may occur. Furthermore, it is important to know which herniated disk should be removed and which should be treated conservatively, because disc herniation may cause serious complications as muscle weakness and cauda equine syndrome.

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Intrabiliary Hepatic Metastasis of Colorectal Carcinoma Mimicking Primary Cholangiocarcinoma: A Case Report and Review of the Literature

Intrabiliary metastasis from colorectal carcinoma (CRC) growing within or invading bile ducts is not a very common pattern. However, accurate diagnosis of metastatic lesions is very important for selection of adjuvant therapy and prognosis. We report a case of 71-year-old male who developed painless jaundice due to hepatobiliary obstruction. MRI demonstrated 1.4 cm intraductal mass at hepatic hilum with severe intrahepatic ductal dilation, consistent with cholangiocarcinoma. ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography) showed intraductal segmental biliary stricture. Biopsy from the lesion showed adenocarcinoma favoring primary cholangiocarcinoma due to the papillary morphology and location of the mass. His past history was significant for rectosigmoid carcinoma (pT1N0) ten years ago and liver resection for metastatic CRC four years ago. He subsequently underwent central hepatectomy with resection of common bile duct. Grossly, there was a 1.2 cm intraductal mass at the bifurcation of bile ducts with multiple nodules in liver parenchyma. Microscopic examination revealed intraductal carcinoma with papillary architecture colonizing bile duct epithelium with resultant dilation and tortuosity. Occasional liver parenchymal nodules show classical metastatic pattern resembling CRC. Because of two distinct morphologic patterns and patient’s past history, immunostains were performed. CK7 stained uninvolved bile duct epithelium with no staining in intrabiliary metastatic growth. CK20 and CDX2 were positive, thus confirming intrabiliary growth as metastatic growth from CRC. In summary, findings from our case indicate that intrabiliary growth of metastatic CRC can easily be overlooked with major duct involvement. Pathologic evaluation with use of immunohistochemical stains is very important to achieve correct diagnosis.

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Rapidly Progressing Refractory Hodgkin Lymphoma: A Case Report and a Possible Explanation

Introduction. Hodgkin lymphoma is a highly curable lymphoid malignancy; however treatment of a significant number of patients remains challenging. Case Report. The authors present an unusually rapidly progressing case of refractory advanced stage classical nodular sclerosis subtype Hodgkin lymphoma with unfavorable prognosis. A 66-year-old male patient was refractory for first-line doxorubicin, bleomycin, vinblastin, dacarbazine (ABVD) treatment with persistent disease; therefore physicians changed treatment for dexamethasone, cytarabine, and cisplatin (DHAP) and later ifosfamide, gemcitabine, and vinorelbine (IGEV) regimen. Unfortunately the patient developed acute kidney and respiratory failure and died after 6 months of treatment. Current and retrospective histological examination of the patient’s lymph node biopsy, skin lesion, and autopsy revealed the same aberrantly expressing CD4 positive nodular sclerosis subtype Hodgkin lymphoma. Conclusion. Aberrant expression of T-cell antigens on the Hodgkin and Reed/Sternberg cells could be associated with inferior outcome. T-cell associated antigens should be investigated more often in patients not responding sufficiently to treatment and hence treatment should be intensified or targeted therapy (brentuximab vedotin) should be considered.

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Removal of Reactive Orange 16 Dye from Aqueous Solution by Using Modified Kenaf Core Fiber

Evaluated removal of reactive orange 16 (RO16) dye from aqueous solution was studied in batch mode by using kenaf core fiber as low-cost adsorbents. In this attempt, kenaf core fiber with size 0.25–1 mm was treated by using (3-chloro-2-hydroxypropyl) trimethylammonium chloride (CHMAC) as quaternization agent. Then effective parameters include adsorbent dose, pH, and contact time and initial dye concentration on adsorption by modified kenaf core fiber was investigated. In addition, isotherms and kinetics adsorption studies were estimated for determination of the equilibrium adsorption capacity and reactions dynamics, respectively. Results showed that the best dose of MKCF was 0.1 g/100 mL, the maximum removal of RO16 was 97.25 at 30°C, pH = 6.5, and agitation speed was 150 rpm. The results also showed that the equilibrium data were represented by Freundlich isotherm with correlation coefficients , and the kinetic study followed the pseudo-second-order kinetic model with correlation coefficients for  mg/L. Furthermore, the maximum adsorption capacity was 416.86 mg/g. Adsorption through kenaf was found to be very effective for the removal of the RO16 dye.

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Finite Element Simulation and X-Ray Microdiffraction Study of Strain Partitioning in a Layered Nanocomposite

The depth-dependent strain partitioning across the interfaces in the growth direction of the NiAl/Cr(Mo) nanocomposite between the Cr and NiAl lamellae was directly measured experimentally and simulated using a finite element method (FEM). Depth-resolved X-ray microdiffraction demonstrated that in the as-grown state both Cr and NiAl lamellae grow along the direction with the formation of as-grown distinct residual ~0.16% compressive strains for Cr lamellae and ~0.05% tensile strains for NiAl lamellae. Three-dimensional simulations were carried out using an implicit FEM. First simulation was designed to study residual strains in the composite due to cooling resulting in formation of crystals. Strains in the growth direction were computed and compared to those obtained from the microdiffraction experiments. Second simulation was conducted to understand the combined strains resulting from cooling and mechanical indentation of the composite. Numerical results in the growth direction of crystal were compared to experimental results confirming the experimentally observed trends.

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Not All Acute Abdomen Cases in Early Pregnancy Are Ectopic; Expect the Unexpected: Renal Angiomyolipoma Causing Massive Retroperitoneal Haemorrhage

Retroperitoneal haemorrhage (or retroperitoneal haematoma) refers to an accumulation of blood found in the retroperitoneal space. It is a rare clinical entity with variable aetiology including anticoagulation, ruptured aortic aneurysm, acute pancreatitis, malignancy, and bleeding from renal aneurysm. Diagnosis of retroperitoneal bleed is sometimes missed or delayed as presentation is often nonspecific. Multislice CT and arteriography are important for diagnosis. There is no consensus about the best management plan for patients with retroperitoneal haematoma. Stable patients can be managed with fluid resuscitation, correction of coagulopathy if any, and blood transfusion. Endovascular options involving selective intra-arterial embolisation or stent-grafts are clearly getting more and more popularity. Open repair is usually reserved for cases when there is failure of conservative or endovascular measures to control the bleeding or expertise is unavailable and in cases where the patient is unstable. Mortality of patients with retroperitoneal haematoma remains high if appropriate and timely measures are not taken. Haemorrhage from a benign renal tumour is a rarer entity which is described in this case report which emphasizes that physicians should have a wide index of suspicion when dealing with patients presenting with significant groin, flank, abdominal, or back pain, or haemodynamic instability of unclear cause. Our patient presented with features of acute abdomen and, being pregnant, was thought of having a ruptured ectopic pregnancy.

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Analysis of the Response of a One-Storey One-Bay Steel Frame to Blast

In recent years, there has been a considerable increase in perceived risks of blast loading attacks or similar incidents on structures. Blast design is therefore a necessary aspect of the design for building structures globally and as such building design must adapt accordingly. Presented herein is an attempt to determine the numerical response of a seismically designed single-degree-of-freedom (SDOF) structure to blast loading. The SDOF model in the form of a portal frame was designed to withstand a typical seismic occurrence in Northern Trinidad. Blast loads caused by applying a 500 kg charge weight of TNT at standoff distances of 45 m, 33 m, and 20 m were then applied to the model. The blast loading on the frame was determined using empirical methods. The analytical study showed that the seismically designed SDOF plane frame model entered the plastic region during the application of the blast load occurring up to the critical standoff distance.

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Enhancing Energy Efficiency of Wireless Sensor Network through the Design of Energy Efficient Routing Protocol

Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) is known to be a highly resource constrained class of network where energy consumption is one of the prime concerns. In this research, a cross layer design methodology was adopted to design an energy efficient routing protocol entitled “Position Responsive Routing Protocol” (PRRP). PRRP is designed to minimize energy consumed in each node by (1) reducing the amount of time in which a sensor node is in an idle listening state and (2) reducing the average communication distance over the network. The performance of the proposed PRRP was critically evaluated in the context of network lifetime, throughput, and energy consumption of the network per individual basis and per data packet basis. The research results were analyzed and benchmarked against the well-known LEACH and CELRP protocols. The outcomes show a significant improvement in the WSN in terms of energy efficiency and the overall performance of WSN.

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Nanomechanical Characterization of Amyloid Fibrils Using Single-Molecule Experiments and Computational Simulations

Amyloid fibrils have recently received much attention due to not only their important role in disease pathogenesis but also their excellent mechanical properties, which are comparable to those of mechanically strong protein materials such as spider silk. This indicates the necessity of understanding fundamental principles providing insight into how amyloid fibrils exhibit the excellent mechanical properties, which may allow for developing biomimetic materials whose material (e.g., mechanical) properties can be controlled. Here, we describe recent efforts to characterize the nanomechanical properties of amyloid fibrils using computational simulations (e.g., atomistic simulations) and single-molecule experiments (e.g., atomic force microscopy experiments). This paper summarizes theoretical models, which are useful in analyzing the mechanical properties of amyloid fibrils based on simulations and experiments, such as continuum elastic (beam) model, elastic network model, and polymer statistical model. In this paper, we suggest how the nanomechanical properties of amyloid fibrils can be characterized and determined using computational simulations and/or atomic force microscopy experiments coupled with the theoretical models.

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Interaction-Aware Video Community-Based Content Delivery in Wireless Mobile Networks

The increase in the demand of content quality and the number of mobile users brings new challenges for the multimedia streaming services in wireless mobile networks. The virtual community technologies are promising by grouping the users with common characteristics to get the gains in the performance of resource lookup and system scalability. In this paper, we propose a novel interaction-aware video community-based content delivery (IVCCD) in wireless mobile networks. IVCCD collects and analyzes the interaction information between users to construct user interaction model and further capture the common characteristics in the request and delivery of video content. IVCCD employs a partition-based community discovery scheme to group the mobile users in terms of the common characteristics and uses a community member management mechanism and a resource sharing scheme to achieve low-cost community maintenance and high searching performance. Extensive tests show how IVCCD achieves much better performance results in comparison with other state-of-the-art solutions.

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Expressions of Matrix Metalloproteinases 2, 7, and 9 in Carcinogenesis of Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a highly fatal disease, usually diagnosed in an advanced stage which gives a slight chance of recovery. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are a family of zinc-dependent endopeptidases that participate in tissue remodeling and stimulate neovascularization and inflammatory response. The aim of the study was to evaluate the expression of MMP-2, MMP-7, and MMP-9 in normal ducts, tumor pancreatic adenocarcinoma cells, and peritumoral stroma in correlation with clinicohistopathological parameters. The study material was obtained from 29 patients with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. The expressions of MMP-2, MMP-7, and MMP-9 were performed by immunohistochemical technique. Microvessel density (MVD) was visualized by special immunostaining. The expressions of MMP-2, MMP-7, and MMP-9 were mainly observed in tumor cells and peritumoral stroma. MMP-2 expression in cancer cells was correlated with female gender, stronger inflammation, and histopathological type of cancer (, ; , ; , , resp.). The expression of MMP-7 in tumor cells was found to positively correlate with the presence of necrosis and negatively correlate with MVD (, ; , ). We also showed that positive MMP-9 expression in tumor cells was associated with MVD (, ); however, it was not statistically significant. Our results demonstrate that MMP-2, MMP-7, and MMP-9 expressions correlate with various morphological features of the PDAC tumor such as inflammation, necrosis, and formation of the new blood vessels.

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Novel Robust Exponential Stability of Markovian Jumping Impulsive Delayed Neural Networks of Neutral-Type with Stochastic Perturbation

The robust exponential stability problem for a class of uncertain impulsive stochastic neural networks of neutral-type with Markovian parameters and mixed time-varying delays is investigated. By constructing a proper exponential-type Lyapunov-Krasovskii functional and employing Jensen integral inequality, free-weight matrix method, some novel delay-dependent stability criteria that ensure the robust exponential stability in mean square of the trivial solution of the considered networks are established in the form of linear matrix inequalities (LMIs). The proposed results do not require the derivatives of discrete and distributed time-varying delays to be 0 or smaller than 1. Moreover, the main contribution of the proposed approach compared with related methods lies in the use of three types of impulses. Finally, two numerical examples are worked out to verify the effectiveness and less conservativeness of our theoretical results over existing literature.

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