The 2023 MDPI Annual Report has
been released!
 
Article
Correlations in the EPR State Observables
by Daniel F. Orsini, Luna R. N. Oliveira and Marcos G. E. da Luz
Entropy 2024, 26(6), 476; https://doi.org/10.3390/e26060476 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
The identification and physical interpretation of arbitrary quantum correlations are not always effortless. Two features that can significantly influence the dispersion of the joint observable outcomes in a quantum bipartite system composed of systems I and II are: (a) All possible pairs of [...] Read more.
The identification and physical interpretation of arbitrary quantum correlations are not always effortless. Two features that can significantly influence the dispersion of the joint observable outcomes in a quantum bipartite system composed of systems I and II are: (a) All possible pairs of observables describing the composite are equally probable upon measurement, and (b) The absence of concurrence (positive reinforcement) between any of the observables within a particular system; implying that their associated operators do not commute. The so-called EPR states are known to observe (a). Here, we demonstrate in very general (but straightforward) terms that they also satisfy condition (b), a relevant technical fact often overlooked. As an illustration, we work out in detail the three-level systems, i.e., qutrits. Furthermore, given the special characteristics of EPR states (such as maximal entanglement, among others), one might intuitively expect the CHSH correlation, computed exclusively for the observables of qubit EPR states, to yield values greater than two, thereby violating Bell’s inequality. We show such a prediction does not hold true. In fact, the combined properties of (a) and (b) lead to a more limited range of values for the CHSH measure, not surpassing the nonlocality threshold of two. The present constitutes an instructive example of the subtleties of quantum correlations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantum Probability and Randomness V)
24 pages, 5396 KiB  
Review
Revolutionizing Cardiovascular Health with Nano Encapsulated Omega-3 Fatty Acids: A Nano-Solution Approach
by Richa Gill, Mashael Al-Badr, Mohammad Alghouti, Nura Adam Mohamed, Haissam Abou-Saleh and Md Mizanur Rahman
Mar. Drugs 2024, 22(6), 256; https://doi.org/10.3390/md22060256 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFAs) offer diverse health benefits, such as supporting cardiovascular health, improving cognitive function, promoting joint and musculoskeletal health, and contributing to healthy aging. Despite their advantages, challenges like oxidation susceptibility, low bioavailability, and potential adverse effects at high [...] Read more.
Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFAs) offer diverse health benefits, such as supporting cardiovascular health, improving cognitive function, promoting joint and musculoskeletal health, and contributing to healthy aging. Despite their advantages, challenges like oxidation susceptibility, low bioavailability, and potential adverse effects at high doses persist. Nanoparticle encapsulation emerges as a promising avenue to address these limitations while preserving stability, enhanced bioavailability, and controlled release. This comprehensive review explores the therapeutic roles of omega-3 fatty acids, critically appraising their shortcomings and delving into modern encapsulation strategies. Furthermore, it explores the potential advantages of metal–organic framework nanoparticles (MOF NPs) compared to other commonly utilized nanoparticles in improving the therapeutic effectiveness of omega-3 fatty acids within drug delivery systems (DDSs). Additionally, it outlines future research directions to fully exploit the therapeutic benefits of these encapsulated omega-3 formulations for cardiovascular disease treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Value-Added Products from Marine Fishes)
Show Figures

Figure 1

17 pages, 5073 KiB  
Article
Empagliflozin Alleviates Carfilzomib-Induced Cardiotoxicity in Mice by Modulating Oxidative Stress, Inflammatory Response, Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress, and Autophagy
by Mina Y. George, Mohamed S. Dabour, Eman Rashad and Beshay N. Zordoky
Antioxidants 2024, 13(6), 671; https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox13060671 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Carfilzomib is an irreversible proteasome inhibitor used for multiple myeloma patients. However, carfilzomib treatment is associated with cardiovascular complications. Empagliflozin, an Sodium Glucose Co-transporter 2 inhibitor (SGLT-2) inhibitor, is an oral antidiabetic drug with proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The aim of the [...] Read more.
Carfilzomib is an irreversible proteasome inhibitor used for multiple myeloma patients. However, carfilzomib treatment is associated with cardiovascular complications. Empagliflozin, an Sodium Glucose Co-transporter 2 inhibitor (SGLT-2) inhibitor, is an oral antidiabetic drug with proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The aim of the present study was to determine the cardioprotective effects of empagliflozin against carfilzomib-induced cardiotoxicity. C57BL/6 mice were randomly divided into four groups: control, empagliflozin, carfilzomib, and carfilzomib + empagliflozin. Empagliflozin prevented carfilzomib-induced cardiotoxicity by ameliorating histological alterations, CK-MB, and troponin-I. Moreover, it inhibited carfilzomib-induced oxidative damage and inflammation via its action on catalase activity, reduced glutathione levels and superoxide dismutase activity, and reduced nuclear factor-κB (p65) and cytokine levels. Mechanistically, empagliflozin abrogated endoplasmic reticulum stress induced by carfilzomib, as evidenced by the effect on the Glucose Regulated Protein-78 (GRP-78)/Activating Transcription Factor 6 (ATF6)/C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP) axis. Intriguingly, carfilzomib significantly induced autophagy, an effect that was further enhanced by empagliflozin, evidenced by increased LC3B and beclin-1 mRNA expression and reduced p62 expression. The effect of empagliflozin on apoptosis was confirmed by reduced expression of active caspase-3. Importantly, empagliflozin did not alter the cytotoxic effect of carfilzomib on human U266B1 multiple myeloma cells. our findings suggest that empagliflozin may provide a new therapeutic strategy to mitigate carfilzomib-induced cardiotoxicity in multiple myeloma patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Health Outcomes of Antioxidants and Oxidative Stress)
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

19 pages, 3273 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Climatological Factors on the Incidence of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis (CL) in Colombian Municipalities from 2017 to 2019
by Daniel Muñoz Morales, Fernanda Suarez Daza, Oliva Franco Betancur, Darly Martinez Guevara and Yamil Liscano
Pathogens 2024, 13(6), 462; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens13060462 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) is a zoonotic disease caused by protozoa of the Leishmania genus, transmitted by vectors from the Phlebotominae subfamily. The interaction between the vector, reservoir, and parasite is susceptible to climate change. This study explores how temperature and rainfall influenced the [...] Read more.
Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) is a zoonotic disease caused by protozoa of the Leishmania genus, transmitted by vectors from the Phlebotominae subfamily. The interaction between the vector, reservoir, and parasite is susceptible to climate change. This study explores how temperature and rainfall influenced the incidence of CL in 15 Colombian municipalities between 2017 and 2019. Epidemiological data were obtained from Colombia’s Instituto Nacional de Salud, while climatological data came from the Instituto de Hidrología, Meteorología y Estudios Ambientales. Using Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient, we examined the relationships between monthly climatic variables and the cumulative incidence of CL, considering various lag times. The data were further analyzed using Locally Weighted Scatterplot Smoothing (LOWESS). Our findings reveal both significant positive and negative correlations, depending on locality and climate variables. LOWESS analysis indicates that while rainfall-related incidence remains stable, temperature impacts incidence in a parabolic trend. This study underscores the significant yet complex influence of climatic factors on CL incidence. The insights gained could aid public health efforts by improving predictive models and crafting targeted interventions to mitigate the disease’s impact, particularly in regions vulnerable to climate variability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Leishmaniasis: Transmission, Pathogenesis and Treatment)
Show Figures

Figure 1

11 pages, 1288 KiB  
Article
New Method of Papillectomy May Decrease Recurrence: Anchoring Method versus Conventional Method
by Jonghyun Lee, Yong Bo Park, Sung Yong Han, Dong Chan Joo, Seung Min Hong, Kiyoun Yi and Dong Uk Kim
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(11), 3226; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13113226 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Background/Objectives: Endoscopic papillectomy (EP) is the preferred treatment for ampullary tumors because it has fewer side effects than surgical removal. This study retrospectively compared a new anchoring EP method (A-EP) with the conventional (C-EP) approach. Methods: Ninety-nine patients who underwent EP [...] Read more.
Background/Objectives: Endoscopic papillectomy (EP) is the preferred treatment for ampullary tumors because it has fewer side effects than surgical removal. This study retrospectively compared a new anchoring EP method (A-EP) with the conventional (C-EP) approach. Methods: Ninety-nine patients who underwent EP at a single medical institution between 2009 and 2021 were retrospectively reviewed. In all patients, the indications for EP were pathological adenoma with <10 mm of biliary invasion and a tumor diameter <30 mm on endoscopic ultrasonography. The exclusion criteria were antiplatelet/anticoagulant use, previous upper GI surgery, or prior biliary/pancreatic endoscopic therapy. One expert endoscopist performed the two types of EPs, A-EP and C-EP. Results: Sixty-two patients underwent A-EP, and 37 underwent C-EP. There were no significant differences in baseline characteristics, such as sex, age, tumor size, and ductal invasion on endoscopic ultrasound. The A-EP group had higher en bloc resection rates (95.2% vs. 78.4%, p = 0.010). Although the difference was not statistically significant, it tended towards fewer incidences of pancreatitis (p = 0.081) and duct stricture (p = 0.081). The recurrence rate was lower in the A-EP group (8.1% vs. 37.8%, p = 0.000). There were no significant differences between the two groups regarding the follow-up period (A-EP vs. C-EP, 725 vs. 1045 days, p = 0.109) or the days of recurrence (A-EP vs. C-EP, 341 vs. 562 days, p = 0.551). Conclusions: A-EP showed better outcomes than C-EP in terms of en bloc resection and recurrence rates, providing evidence for the efficacy of this novel EP method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Gastroenterology & Hepatopancreatobiliary Medicine)
Show Figures

Figure 1

4 pages, 154 KiB  
Editorial
Pharmacogenomics: Challenges and Future
by Mariamena Arbitrio
Genes 2024, 15(6), 714; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes15060714 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Over the last few decades, the implementation of pharmacogenomics (PGx) in clinical practice has improved tailored drug prescriptions [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacogenomics: Challenges and Future)
9 pages, 1600 KiB  
Article
Assessment of the Novel Anti-Seizure Potential of Validamycin A Using Zebrafish Epilepsy Model
by Eunhye Lee, Amit Banik, Ki-Baek Lee, Seung Min Sim, Ah Hyun Kil, Byung Joon Hwang and Yun Kee
Molecules 2024, 29(11), 2572; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules29112572 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Epilepsy is a prevalent neurological disorder characterized by recurrent seizures. Validamycin A (VA) is an antibiotic fungicide that inhibits trehalase activity and is widely used for crop protection in agriculture. In this study, we identified a novel function of VA as a potential [...] Read more.
Epilepsy is a prevalent neurological disorder characterized by recurrent seizures. Validamycin A (VA) is an antibiotic fungicide that inhibits trehalase activity and is widely used for crop protection in agriculture. In this study, we identified a novel function of VA as a potential anti-seizure medication in a zebrafish epilepsy model. Electroencephalogram (EEG) analysis demonstrated that VA reduced pentylenetetrazol (PTZ)-induced seizures in the brains of larval and adult zebrafish. Moreover, VA reduced PTZ-induced irregular movement in a behavioral assessment of adult zebrafish. The developmental toxicity test showed no observable anatomical alteration when the zebrafish larvae were treated with VA up to 10 µM within the effective range. The median lethal dose of VA in adult zebrafish was > 14,000 mg/kg. These results imply that VA does not demonstrate observable toxicity in zebrafish at concentrations effective for generating anti-seizure activity in the EEG and alleviating abnormal behavior in the PTZ-induced epileptic model. Furthermore, the effectiveness of VA was comparable to that of valproic acid. These results indicate that VA may have a potentially safer anti-seizure profile than valproic acid, thus offering promising prospects for its application in agriculture and medicine. Full article
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

20 pages, 11196 KiB  
Article
Study on the Effect of the Undercut Area on the Movement Law of Overburden Rock Layers in the Block Caving Method
by Xiushan Qin, Xiaocong Yang, Zhonghao Liang, Hui Cao and Liu Xu
Appl. Sci. 2024, 14(11), 4704; https://doi.org/10.3390/app14114704 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
We chose to study the bottom structure stress evolution law in the process of undercut area advancement via the block caving method, reveal the influence law of the undercut rate on the effect of the ore body caving process, and assess the floor [...] Read more.
We chose to study the bottom structure stress evolution law in the process of undercut area advancement via the block caving method, reveal the influence law of the undercut rate on the effect of the ore body caving process, and assess the floor stress evolution law in the process of the undercut area with a different undercut rate in order to guide the production of a natural disintegration method under horizontal ground stress and also provide some reference value for rock damage assessment. According to the actual engineering and physical parameters of the mine, a numerical simulation model was created by using finite discrete element software GPI-3D-FDEM, and the Neo–Hookean hyperelastic constitutive model was adopted for calculation purposes. The simulation process follows a backward bottoming approach and monitors and analyses the stress state of the substructure after each bottoming step. The indoor physical model is employed to conduct similar two–dimensional simulation experiments on similar materials, investigating the motion laws of overlying rock layers. The research findings indicate that as bottom blasting progresses, a gradual concentration of compressive stress occurs in the foundation structure ahead of the advancing line. If this stress surpasses the rock mass’s shear failure limit, ground pressure failure may ensue. During mineral extraction from the bottom, internal stress within the fractured fault zone significantly diminishes compared to adjacent rock and ore deposits. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

17 pages, 40029 KiB  
Article
Redefining Immune Dynamics in Acute Pancreatitis: The Protective Role of Galectin-3 Deletion and Treg Cell Enhancement
by Ivana Milivojcevic Bevc, Danijela Tasic-Uros, Bojana S. Stojanovic, Ivan Jovanovic, Milica Dimitrijevic Stojanovic, Nevena Gajovic, Milena Jurisevic, Gordana Radosavljevic, Jelena Pantic and Bojan Stojanovic
Biomolecules 2024, 14(6), 642; https://doi.org/10.3390/biom14060642 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Acute pancreatitis (AP) is a complex inflammatory condition that can lead to systemic inflammatory responses and multiple organ dysfunction. This study investigates the role of Galectin-3 (Gal-3), a β-galactoside-binding lectin, in modulating acquired immune responses in AP. Acute pancreatitis was induced by ligation [...] Read more.
Acute pancreatitis (AP) is a complex inflammatory condition that can lead to systemic inflammatory responses and multiple organ dysfunction. This study investigates the role of Galectin-3 (Gal-3), a β-galactoside-binding lectin, in modulating acquired immune responses in AP. Acute pancreatitis was induced by ligation of the bile-pancreatic duct in wild-type and Galectin-3-deficient C57BL/6 mice. We determined the phenotypic and molecular features of inflammatory cells, serum concentrations of amylase, pancreatic trypsin activity, and pancreatic and lung pathology. Galectin-3 deficiency decreased the total number of CD3+CD49 T cells and CD4+ T helper cells, downregulated the production of inflammatory cytokine and IFN-γ, and increased the accumulation of IL-10-producing Foxp3+ T regulatory cells and regulatory CD4+ T cells in the pancreata of diseased animals. The deletion of Galectin-3 ameliorates acute pancreatitis characterized by lowering serum amylase concentration and pancreatic trypsin activity, and attenuating of the histopathology of the lung. These findings shed light on the role of Galectin-3 in acquired immune response in acute pancreatitis and identify Galectin-3 as an attractive target for investigation of the immunopathogenesis of disease and for consideration as a potential therapeutic target for patients with acute inflammatory disease of the pancreas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Galectins)
Show Figures

Figure 1

11 pages, 2443 KiB  
Article
An Integrated Analysis of Anatomical and Sugar Contents Identifies How Night Temperatures Regulate the Healing Process of Oriental Melon Grafted onto Pumpkin
by Huan Liang, Jiangfeng Liu, Xianfeng Shi, Mihong Ge, Juhong Zhu, Dehuan Wang and Mobing Zhou
Plants 2024, 13(11), 1506; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants13111506 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Graft healing is a complex process affected by environmental factors, with temperature being one of the most important influencing factors. Here, oriental melon grafted onto pumpkin was used to study changes in graft union formation and sugar contents at the graft interface under [...] Read more.
Graft healing is a complex process affected by environmental factors, with temperature being one of the most important influencing factors. Here, oriental melon grafted onto pumpkin was used to study changes in graft union formation and sugar contents at the graft interface under night temperatures of 18 °C and 28 °C. Histological analysis suggested that callus formation occurred 3 days after grafting with a night temperature of 28 °C, which was one day earlier than with a night temperature of 18 °C. Vascular reconnection with a night temperature of 28 °C was established 2 days earlier than with a night temperature of 18 °C. Additionally, nine sugars were significantly enriched in the graft union, with the contents of sucrose, trehalose, raffinose, D–glucose, D–fructose, D–galactose, and inositol initially increasing but then decreasing. Furthermore, we also found that exogenous glucose and fructose application promotes vascular reconnection. However, exogenous sucrose application did not promote vascular reconnection. Taken together, our results reveal that elevated temperatures improve the process of graft union formation through increasing the contents of sugars. This study provides information to develop strategies for improving grafting efficiency under low temperatures. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

18 pages, 4226 KiB  
Article
Effects of MnTBAP on Porcine Semen Cryopreservation and Capacitation
by Eunji Kim, Il-Jeoung Yu, Joohyeong Lee and Yubyeol Jeon
Antioxidants 2024, 13(6), 672; https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox13060672 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Antioxidants protect cellular function and structure by neutralizing the oxidative stress caused by increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) during sperm freezing. Studies on cryopreservation using various antioxidants have demonstrated encouraging results. Many studies have used antioxidants to increase the efficiency of sperm freezing [...] Read more.
Antioxidants protect cellular function and structure by neutralizing the oxidative stress caused by increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) during sperm freezing. Studies on cryopreservation using various antioxidants have demonstrated encouraging results. Many studies have used antioxidants to increase the efficiency of sperm freezing and to improve the success rate of artificial insemination and pregnancy. Manganese (III) tetrakis (4-benzoic acid) porphyrin chloride (MnTBAP) is a newly synthesized antioxidant with positive effects on sperm morphology and capacitation in humans, rams, and stallions. In this study, porcine semen was treated with 0, 50, 100, and 150 μM of MnTBAP based on a Tris–egg-yolk extender and frozen to determine whether MnTBAP can assist the status of sperm during cryopreservation. First, motility was assessed using the computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA) system, with the 100 μM treatment group showing the highest motile rate (66.8%) compared with that of the other groups (control, 51.1%; 50 μM and 150 μM, 59.6%); therefore, the remaining analyses were conducted comparing the two groups (control vs. 100 μM group; p < 0.01). Second, fluorescence staining was applied to examine the control and 100 μM groups using fluorescence microscopy. The viability (41.7% vs. 62.4%) and the acrosome integrity (77.9% vs. 86.4%) differed significantly (p < 0.05). In addition, the mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) was 46.5% vs. 51.9%; the fragmentation rate, estimated using the Sperm-sus-Halomax kit, was 63.4% vs. 57.4%; and the detected caspase activity was 30.1% vs. 22.9%. These tended to be higher in the treated group but did not differ significantly. Third, measurements using FACSLyric revealed that the 100 μM treatment group exhibited a state of elevated normal lipid arrangement within the plasma membrane and diminished levels of apoptosis and ROS (p < 0.01). We assessed the expression of genes relevant to antioxidant effectiveness using real-time RT-qPCR. Our findings indicated significant alterations in the expression levels of various mRNA species, with the exception of NOX5 (p < 0.05). Finally, the straws were dissolved and used to treat matured denuded oocytes to investigate the effect on fertilization and embryo development in vitro. The cleavage rate was (77.6% vs. 84.1%), and the blastocyst rate was 9.7% vs. 11.4% (p < 0.05). In conclusion, these results suggest that MnTBAP positively affected sperm freeze–thawing, improving the fertilization capacity, and leading to increased embryo development. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

16 pages, 2559 KiB  
Article
Fermented Astragalus Powder, a New Potential Feed Additive for Broilers to Improve the Growth Performance and Health
by Songwei Han, Guowei Xu, Kang Zhang, Saad Ahmad, Lei Wang, Fubin Chen, Jiahui Liu, Xueyan Gu, Jianxi Li and Jingyan Zhang
Animals 2024, 14(11), 1628; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani14111628 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
A total of 320 1-day-old broilers were randomly divided into five groups. The control group (CON) received a basal diet, while the FAP4, FAP2, and FAP1 groups were provided with the basal diet supplemented with 4%, 2%, and 1% fermented Astragalus powder, respectively. [...] Read more.
A total of 320 1-day-old broilers were randomly divided into five groups. The control group (CON) received a basal diet, while the FAP4, FAP2, and FAP1 groups were provided with the basal diet supplemented with 4%, 2%, and 1% fermented Astragalus powder, respectively. The unfermented Astragalus powder (UAP2) group was fed the basal diet supplemented with 2% UAP. Each group contained eight replicates of eight chicks each. The results revealed that the final BW and ADG in the FAP 1 and FAP2 were higher than those in the UAP2 and CON groups, while reducing F/G from day 14 to day 42. On day 42, the thymus index in the UAP and FAP groups as well as the bursa index in the FAP4 group showed significant increases compared to those in the CON group. Supplementation with 2% FAP elevated serum IgA levels in broilers on day 28 and day 42, and it also increased serum IgG levels on day 42. Furthermore, supplementation with 2% FAP elevated serum albumin (ALB) levels in broilers, while supplementation with 4% FAP increased serum (glucose) GLU levels in broilers on day 28. The serum biochemical parameters and pathological observation of the liver and kidney in the groups did not show any adverse effects on broilers’ health. In addition, the serum total antioxidant capacity (T-AOC) level significantly increased in the FAP4 and FAP2 groups on day 28, and the malondialdehyde (MDA) level in both serum and liver tissue decreased in the FAP2 group on day 28 and day 42. Compared to the CON group, 2% FAP and 2% UAP supplementation reduced the relative abundance of Bacteroides and supplementation with 2% FAP increased the relative abundance of Alistipes on day 42. In conclusion, the dietary supplementation of FAP can enhance the growth performance, immune function, and antioxidant capacity and regulate microflora in broilers, of which 2% FAP is more effective. It indicates FAP exhibits significant application potential as a promising feed additive for broilers. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

18 pages, 4499 KiB  
Article
Distribution and Variation of Soil Water and Salt before and after Autumn Irrigation
by Yin Zhang, Qingfeng Miao, Ruiping Li, Minghai Sun, Xinmin Yang, Wei Wang, Yongping Huang and Weiying Feng
Land 2024, 13(6), 773; https://doi.org/10.3390/land13060773 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Autumn irrigation is a key measure for alleviating soil salinity and promoting sustainable agricultural development in the Hetao Irrigation district; however, only a part of farmland is irrigated in autumn during the non-growth period of crops, which leads to the redistribution of soil [...] Read more.
Autumn irrigation is a key measure for alleviating soil salinity and promoting sustainable agricultural development in the Hetao Irrigation district; however, only a part of farmland is irrigated in autumn during the non-growth period of crops, which leads to the redistribution of soil water and salt between autumn-irrigated land (AIL) and adjacent non-autumn-irrigated land (NAIL) after autumn irrigation. To explore the distribution and variation of soil water and salt in different positions of AIL and NAIL after local autumn irrigation and reveal the interaction range between AIL and NAIL, field experiments were carried out for two years in typical test areas. The results showed that compared with non-autumn irrigation, autumn irrigation improved the distribution uniformity of soil water and salt profiles in both horizontal and vertical directions; after autumn irrigation, the water content of the soil at the nearest sampling point to the boundary in the AIL increased the least, but the desalination rate was the greatest, while the water and salt contents of the soil within 45 m from the sampling points to the boundary in the NAIL both increased significantly. NAIL received the drainage of AIL and made the groundwater level after the rise in AIL fell quickly back, but unreasonable autumn irrigation caused the groundwater level of AIL to remain at a high level before freezing, exacerbating the risk of groundwater carrying salts to the surface soil during the freezing and thawing period, detrimental to the growth of crops in the next spring. The research results are of great significance to the rational use of farmland water resources and the improvement of soil salinization in cold and dry areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Salinity Monitoring and Modelling at Different Scales)
Show Figures

Figure 1

21 pages, 3657 KiB  
Article
Nonclinical Evaluation of Single-Mutant E. coli Asparaginases Obtained by Double-Mutant Deconvolution: Improving Toxicological, Immune and Inflammatory Responses
by Grace Ruiz-Lara, Tales A. Costa-Silva, Jorge Javier Muso-Cachumba, Johanna Cevallos Espinel, Marina Gabriel Fontes, Mitla Garcia-Maya, Khondaker Miraz Rahman, Carlota de Oliveira Rangel-Yagui and Gisele Monteiro
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2024, 25(11), 6008; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms25116008 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia is currently treated with bacterial L-asparaginase; however, its side effects raise the need for the development of improved and efficient novel enzymes. Previously, we obtained low anti-asparaginase antibody production and high serum enzyme half-life in mice treated with the P40S/S206C [...] Read more.
Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia is currently treated with bacterial L-asparaginase; however, its side effects raise the need for the development of improved and efficient novel enzymes. Previously, we obtained low anti-asparaginase antibody production and high serum enzyme half-life in mice treated with the P40S/S206C mutant; however, its specific activity was significantly reduced. Thus, our aim was to test single mutants, S206C and P40S, through in vitro and in vivo assays. Our results showed that the drop in specific activity was caused by P40S substitution. In addition, our single mutants were highly stable in biological environment simulation, unlike the double-mutant P40S/S206C. The in vitro cell viability assay demonstrated that mutant enzymes have a higher cytotoxic effect than WT on T-cell-derived ALL and on some solid cancer cell lines. The in vivo assays were performed in mice to identify toxicological effects, to evoke immunological responses and to study the enzymes’ pharmacokinetics. From these tests, none of the enzymes was toxic; however, S206C elicited lower physiological changes and immune/allergenic responses. In relation to the pharmacokinetic profile, S206C exhibited twofold higher activity than WT and P40S two hours after injection. In conclusion, we present bioengineered E. coli asparaginases with high specific enzyme activity and fewer side effects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Acute Leukemia: From Basic Research to Clinical Application)
Show Figures

Figure 1

12 pages, 1325 KiB  
Article
Internal and External Validation of Machine Learning Models for Predicting Acute Kidney Injury Following Non-Cardiac Surgery Using Open Datasets
by Sang-Wook Lee, Jaewon Jang, Woo-Young Seo, Donghee Lee and Sung-Hoon Kim
J. Pers. Med. 2024, 14(6), 587; https://doi.org/10.3390/jpm14060587 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
This study developed and validated a machine learning model to accurately predict acute kidney injury (AKI) after non-cardiac surgery, aiming to improve patient outcomes by assessing its clinical feasibility and generalizability. We conducted a retrospective cohort study using data from 76,032 adults who [...] Read more.
This study developed and validated a machine learning model to accurately predict acute kidney injury (AKI) after non-cardiac surgery, aiming to improve patient outcomes by assessing its clinical feasibility and generalizability. We conducted a retrospective cohort study using data from 76,032 adults who underwent non-cardiac surgery at a single tertiary medical center between March 2019 and February 2021, and used data from 5512 patients from the VitalDB open dataset for external model validation. The predictive variables for model training consisted of demographic, preoperative laboratory, and intraoperative data, including calculated statistical values such as the minimum, maximum, and mean intraoperative blood pressure. When predicting postoperative AKI, our gradient boosting machine model incorporating all the variables achieved the best results, with AUROC values of 0.868 and 0.757 for the internal and external validations using the VitalDB dataset, respectively. The model using intraoperative data performed best in internal validation, while the model with preoperative data excelled in external validation. In this study, we developed a predictive model for postoperative AKI in adult patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery using preoperative and intraoperative data, and external validation demonstrated the efficacy of open datasets for generalization in medical artificial modeling research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Clinical Medicine, Cell, and Organism Physiology)
Show Figures

Figure 1

17 pages, 1804 KiB  
Article
Comparison of the Trapping Efficacy of Locally Modified Gravid Aedes Trap and Autocidal Gravid Ovitrap for the Monitoring and Surveillance of Aedes aegypti Mosquitoes in Tanzania
by Jane Johnson Machange, Masudi Suleiman Maasayi, John Mundi, Jason Moore, Joseph Barnabas Muganga, Olukayode G. Odufuwa, Sarah J. Moore and Frank Chelestino Tenywa
Insects 2024, 15(6), 401; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects15060401 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
The study assessed the trapping efficacy of locally modified (1) Gravid Aedes Trap (GAT) lined with insecticide-treated net (ITN) as a killing agent and (2) Autocidal Gravid Ovitrap (AGO) with sticky board in the semi-field system (SFS) and field setting. Fully balanced Latin [...] Read more.
The study assessed the trapping efficacy of locally modified (1) Gravid Aedes Trap (GAT) lined with insecticide-treated net (ITN) as a killing agent and (2) Autocidal Gravid Ovitrap (AGO) with sticky board in the semi-field system (SFS) and field setting. Fully balanced Latin square experiments were conducted to compare GAT lined with ITN vs. AGO, both with either yeast or grass infusion. Biogent-Sentinel (BGS) with BG-Lure and no CO2 was used as a standard trap for Aedes mosquitoes. In the SFS, GAT outperformed AGO in collecting both nulliparous (65% vs. 49%, OR = 2.22, [95%CI: 1.89–2.60], p < 0.001) and gravid mosquitoes (73% vs. 64%, OR = 1.67, [95%CI: 1.41–1.97], p < 0.001). Similar differences were observed in the field. Yeast and grass infusion did not significantly differ in trapping gravid mosquitoes (OR = 0.91, [95%CI: 0.77–1.07], p = 0.250). The use of ITN improved mosquito recapture from 11% to 70% in the SFS. The same trend was observed in the field. Yeast was chosen for further evaluation in the optimized GAT due to its convenience and bifenthrin net for its resistance management properties. Mosquito density was collected when using 4× GATs relative to BGS-captured gravid mosquitoes 64 vs. 58 (IRR = 0.82, [95%CI: 0.35–1.95], p = 0.658) and showed no density dependence. Deployment of multiple yeast-baited GAT lined with bifenthrin net is cost-effective (single GAT < $8) compared to other traps such as BGS ($160). Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medical and Livestock Entomology)
Show Figures

Figure 1

18 pages, 4545 KiB  
Article
The Influence of the Mining Operation Environment on the Energy Consumption and Technical Availability of Truck Haulage Operations in Surface Mines
by Przemysław Bodziony and Michał Patyk
Energies 2024, 17(11), 2654; https://doi.org/10.3390/en17112654 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
This paper presents an analysis of the impact of selected parameters of the operating environment on the energy consumption and reliability of haulage in surface mining. The analysis is based on a cyclic haulage system in a limestone open pit. The results of [...] Read more.
This paper presents an analysis of the impact of selected parameters of the operating environment on the energy consumption and reliability of haulage in surface mining. The analysis is based on a cyclic haulage system in a limestone open pit. The results of the calculations show that maintaining the operating environment in good technical condition has a positive effect on the haulage process and a direct or indirect effect on the operating costs, the analysis of which is also presented in the main body of the article. The analysis was carried out for a full year’s production, taking into account actual operating and maintenance downtime. The results of similar analyses can be used as a basis for deciding on the type of truck to be used for transport or for reconfiguring transport routes. In addition to the economic and operational aspects of energy consumption and reliability, the environmental aspect cannot be overlooked. The comparison of two variants of mining conditions shows that a modification of the haul road surface leads to a significant reduction in fuel consumption. Depending on the type of vehicle, fuel consumption can be reduced by almost 20%. The potential reduction in fuel consumption directly translates into lower exhaust emissions, which is an important element of an environmentally sustainable approach to mining transport, and greater reliability increases efficiency and reduces the carbon footprint of the vehicle. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section B: Energy and Environment)
Show Figures

Figure 1

18 pages, 2146 KiB  
Review
Implantable Pressure-Sensing Devices for Monitoring Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms in Post-Endovascular Aneurysm Repair
by Nuno P. Silva, Bilal Amin, Eoghan Dunne, Niamh Hynes, Martin O’Halloran and Adnan Elahi
Sensors 2024, 24(11), 3526; https://doi.org/10.3390/s24113526 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Over the past two decades, there has been extensive research into surveillance methods for the post-endovascular repair of abdominal aortic aneurysms, highlighting the importance of these technologies in supplementing or even replacing conventional image-screening modalities. This review aims to provide an overview of [...] Read more.
Over the past two decades, there has been extensive research into surveillance methods for the post-endovascular repair of abdominal aortic aneurysms, highlighting the importance of these technologies in supplementing or even replacing conventional image-screening modalities. This review aims to provide an overview of the current status of alternative surveillance solutions for endovascular aneurysm repair, while also identifying potential aneurysm features that could be used to develop novel monitoring technologies. It offers a comprehensive review of these recent clinical advances, comparing new and standard clinical practices. After introducing the clinical understanding of abdominal aortic aneurysms and exploring current treatment procedures, the paper discusses the current surveillance methods for endovascular repair, contrasting them with recent pressure-sensing technologies. The literature on three commercial pressure-sensing devices for post-endovascular repair surveillance is analyzed. Various pre-clinical and clinical studies assessing the safety and efficacy of these devices are reviewed, providing a comparative summary of their outcomes. The review of the results from pre-clinical and clinical studies suggests a consistent trend of decreased blood pressure in the excluded aneurysm sac post-repair. However, despite successful pressure readings from the aneurysm sac, no strong link has been established to translate these measurements into the presence or absence of endoleaks. Furthermore, the results do not allow for a conclusive determination of ongoing aneurysm sac growth. Consequently, a strong clinical need persists for monitoring endoleaks and aneurysm growth following endovascular repair. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Review Papers in the Biomedical Sensors Section)
Show Figures

Figure 1

13 pages, 1949 KiB  
Article
Antibacterial Activities of Agaricus bisporus Extracts and Their Synergistic Effects with the Antistaphylococcal Drug AFN-1252
by Milica Jankov, Vincent Léguillier, Uroš Gašić, Jamila Anba-Mondoloni, Maja Krstić Ristivojević, Aleksandra Radoičić, Ivica Dimkić, Petar Ristivojević and Jasmina Vidic
Foods 2024, 13(11), 1715; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods13111715 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Agaricus bisporus, commonly known as the button mushroom, has attracted attention for its biological properties, including antimicrobial activities. Here, we evaluated the efficacy of ethanolic and acetonic extracts from white and brown A. bisporus against different bacterial strains, including antibiotic-resistant strains. Bioautography [...] Read more.
Agaricus bisporus, commonly known as the button mushroom, has attracted attention for its biological properties, including antimicrobial activities. Here, we evaluated the efficacy of ethanolic and acetonic extracts from white and brown A. bisporus against different bacterial strains, including antibiotic-resistant strains. Bioautography and principal component analysis identified the most active antibacterial compounds for each of the tested bacteria and indicated the main markers responsible for the strain-specific effects. In addition, the mushroom extracts demonstrated a synergistic impact when combined with the antistaphylococcal antibiotic AFN-1252. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

13 pages, 17600 KiB  
Article
Fast-Curing 3-Layer Particleboards with Lignosulfonate and pMDI Adhesives
by Sofia Gonçalves, Nádia T. Paiva, Jorge Martins, Luísa H. Carvalho and Fernão D. Magalhães
Forests 2024, 15(6), 948; https://doi.org/10.3390/f15060948 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
Currently, the industrial success of bio-based adhesives remains limited, despite the growing interest in these compounds. One example is the use of lignosulfonates (LS), a byproduct from the pulp and paper industry, which requires long pressing times to ensure proper performance for wood-based [...] Read more.
Currently, the industrial success of bio-based adhesives remains limited, despite the growing interest in these compounds. One example is the use of lignosulfonates (LS), a byproduct from the pulp and paper industry, which requires long pressing times to ensure proper performance for wood-based panel production. This study successfully manufactured particleboards using a low press factor of 7.5 s/mm, commonly used for conventional urea-formaldehyde resins on a lab scale. To the best of our knowledge, lignin-based particleboards have never been reported using such low press factors. Thus, 3-layer boards were manufactured in which the core layer was bonded with polymeric isocyanate (pMDI), and the surface layers were bonded with LS. Propylene carbonate (PC) was used as a solvent for pMDI to improve adhesive distribution. The optimum amounts of adhesive were determined using response surface methodology: 1.3% pMDI with 2.2% PC in the core layer and 15% LS in the surface layers. These boards obeyed the requirements of standard EN 312 for general-purpose boards for use in dry conditions (type P1). Their formaldehyde content, determined through the perforator method, was equal to that of the wood mix at the maximum value set by IKEA for class E0.5. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Valorization of Forestry Byproducts)
Show Figures

Figure 1

34 pages, 1274 KiB  
Article
Graph-Driven Exploration of Issue Handling Schemes in Software Projects
by Bartosz Dobrzyński and Janusz Sosnowski
Appl. Sci. 2024, 14(11), 4723; https://doi.org/10.3390/app14114723 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
The Issue Tracking System (ITS) repositories are rich sources of software development documentation that are useful in assessing the status and quality of software projects. An original model is proposed for tracing issue handling activities and their impact on project progress. As opposed [...] Read more.
The Issue Tracking System (ITS) repositories are rich sources of software development documentation that are useful in assessing the status and quality of software projects. An original model is proposed for tracing issue handling activities and their impact on project progress. As opposed to classical data mining of software repositories, we consider fine-grained features of issues which provide a better insight into project evolution. A thorough analysis of repository contents allows us to define useful metrics for characterizing issue handling schemes. These metrics are derived from the introduced graph model and developed original data mining algorithms targeting timing, issue flow progress and project actor activity aspects. This study is associated with issue processing states and their sequences (handling paths), leading to problem resolution. The introduced taxonomy of issue processing schemes facilitates the creation of a pertinent knowledge database and the identification of both bad (anomalies) and good practices. The proposed approach is illustrated with experimental results related to a representative set of ITS project repositories. These results enhance experts’ knowledge of the project and can be used for correct decision-making actions. They reveal weak points in project development and possible directions for improvement. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Knowledge and Data Engineering)
Show Figures

Figure 1

15 pages, 2506 KiB  
Article
Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT) to Localised Prostate Cancer in the Era of MRI-Guided Adaptive Radiotherapy: Doses Delivered in the HERMES Trial Comparing Two- and Five-Fraction Treatments
by Rosalyne Westley, Francis Casey, Adam Mitchell, Sophie Alexander, Simeon Nill, Julia Murray, Ragu Ratnakumaran, Angela Pathmanathan, Uwe Oelfke, Alex Dunlop and Alison C. Tree
Cancers 2024, 16(11), 2073; https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers16112073 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
HERMES is a phase II trial of MRI-guided daily-adaptive radiotherapy (MRIgART) randomising men with localised prostate cancer to either 2-fractions of SBRT with a boost to the tumour or 5-fraction SBRT. In the context of this highly innovative regime the dose delivered must [...] Read more.
HERMES is a phase II trial of MRI-guided daily-adaptive radiotherapy (MRIgART) randomising men with localised prostate cancer to either 2-fractions of SBRT with a boost to the tumour or 5-fraction SBRT. In the context of this highly innovative regime the dose delivered must be carefully considered. The first ten patients recruited to HERMES were analysed in order to establish the dose received by the targets and organs at risk (OARS) in the context of intrafraction motion. A regression analysis was performed to measure how the volume of air within the rectum might further impact rectal dose secondary to the electron return effect (ERE). One hundred percent of CTV target objectives were achieved on the MRI taken prior to beam-on-time. The post-delivery MRI showed that high-dose CTV coverage was achieved in 90% of sub-fractions (each fraction is delivered in two sub-fractions) in the 2-fraction cohort and in 88% of fractions the 5-fraction cohort. Rectal D1 cm3 was the most exceeded constraint; three patients exceeded the D1 cm3 < 20.8 Gy in the 2-fraction cohort and one patient exceeded the D1 cm3 < 36 Gy in the 5-fraction cohort. The volume of rectal gas within 1 cm of the prostate was directly proportional to the increase in rectal D1 cm3, with a strong (R = 0.69) and very strong (R = 0.90) correlation in the 2-fraction and 5-fraction cohort respectively. Dose delivery specified in HERMES is feasible, although for some patients delivered doses to both target and OARs may vary from those planned. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MRI-Guided Real-Time Adaptive Radiotherapy)
Show Figures

Figure 1

18 pages, 319 KiB  
Article
A Singular Tempered Sub-Diffusion Fractional Model Involving a Non-Symmetrically Quasi-Homogeneous Operator
by Xinguang Zhang, Peng Chen, Lishuang Li and Yonghong Wu
Symmetry 2024, 16(6), 671; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym16060671 (registering DOI) - 30 May 2024
Abstract
In this paper, we focus on the existence of positive solutions for a singular tempered sub-diffusion fractional model involving a quasi-homogeneous nonlinear operator. By using the spectrum theory and computing the fixed point index, some new sufficient conditions for the existence of positive [...] Read more.
In this paper, we focus on the existence of positive solutions for a singular tempered sub-diffusion fractional model involving a quasi-homogeneous nonlinear operator. By using the spectrum theory and computing the fixed point index, some new sufficient conditions for the existence of positive solutions are derived. It is worth pointing out that the nonlinearity of the equation contains a tempered fractional sub-diffusion term, and is allowed to possess strong singularities in time and space variables. In particular, the quasi-homogeneous operator is a nonlinear and non-symmetrical operator. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Symmetry in Geometric Theory of Analytic Functions)

Open Access Journals

Browse by Indexing Browse by Subject Selected Journals
Back to TopTop