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Document Server@UHasselt (59.068 recursos)

Repository of the University of Hasselt containing publications in the fields of statistics, computer science, information strategies and material from the Institute for behavioural sciences.

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Mostrando recursos 1 - 20 de 3.208

  1. Management of the Cardiorenal Syndrome in Decompensated Heart Failure

    VERBRUGGE, Frederik; GRIETEN, Lars; MULLENS, Wilfried
    Background: The management of the cardiorenal syndrome (CRS) in decompensated heart failure (HF) is challenging, with high-quality evidence lacking. Summary: The pathophysiology of CRS in decompensated HF is complex, with glomerular filtration rate (GFR) and urine output representing different aspects of kidney function. GFR depends on structural factors (number of functional nephrons and integrity of the glomerular membrane) versus hemodynamic alterations (volume status, renal perfusion, arterial blood pressure, central venous pressure or intra-abdominal pressure) and neurohumoral activation. In contrast, urine output and volume homeostasis are mainly a function of the renal tubules. Treatment of CRS in decompensated HF patients should...

  2. Implementation of transmural disease management in patients admitted with advanced heart failure

    Duchenne, Jurgen; VERBRUGGE, Frederik; DUPONT, Matthias; Vercammen, Jan; Jacobs, Linda; GRIETEN, Lars; VANDERVOORT, Pieter; MULLENS, Wilfried
    Objective The objective of this study was to assess the feasibility and impact on readmissions of transmural disease management across the borders of the cardiology department in patients with advanced heart failure (HF). Methods and results Consecutive patients, readmitted within one year for advanced HF by a dedicated specialist (n = 55), were followed for 22 10 months after implementation of a hospitalwide transmural disease management strategy. Participants received a tag in their electronic medical record, triggering a HF caregiver contact, with subsequent guideline-recommended, protocol-driven care on each cardiac or non-cardiac hospitalization as well as outpatient evaluation. Upon transition to...

  3. Increased cardiovascular risk in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: an overview

    Puttevils, Daisy; DE VUSSER, Philip; GEUSENS, Piet; DENS, Jo
    Patients with established rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have a higher cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in comparison with the general population. It is considered to be an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease. The purpose of this article is to describe the mechanisms responsible for accelerated atherogenesis in RA patients and to give an overview of the effects of different RA therapies (methotrexate, TNF antagonists and other biologicals).

  4. Revision of Phaenocora Ehrenberg, 1836 (Rhabditophora, Typhloplanidae, Phaenocorinae) with the description of two new species

    HOUBEN, Albrecht; VAN STEENKISTE, Niels; ARTOIS, Tom
    A morphological and taxonomical account of the taxon Phaenocora is provided. An effort was made to locate and study all available material and, where possible, species are briefly re-described. We also describe two new species: Phaenocora gilberti sp. nov. from Cootes Paradise, Ontario, Canada and Phaenocora aglobulata sp. nov. from Prairie Grove, Alabama, USA. Species recognition is based on a combination of both male and female morphology. A comparison of and discussion on all species is given, resulting in a total of 28 valid species, three species inquirendae, five species dubiae, and one nomen nudum. An identification key is provided.

  5. Carbon loading in airway macrophages as a biomarker for individual exposure to particulate matter air pollution - A critical review

    Bai, Yang; Brugha, Rossa E.; Jacobs, Lotte; Grigg, Jonathan; NAWROT, Tim; Nemery, Benoit
    Exposure to particulate matter (PM) is associated with adverse health effects, including chronic lung diseases, lung cancer and cardiovascular disease. Personal exposure varies depending on the generation of particles locally, background levels, activity patterns and meteorology. Carbon loading in airway macrophages (AM) is a novel marker to assess personal exposure to combustion-derived particles. This review summarizes the published evidence and describes the validity and reliability of this marker with a focus on the technical aspects. Carbon loading in AM is reported in nine published studies assessing personal exposure to particulate air pollution. The carbon content is quantified by image analysis...

  6. Road safety performance evaluation and policy making by data envelopment analysis: A case study of provincial data in Iran

    Behnood, H. R.; Ayati, E.; Hermans, Elke; Neghab, M. A. Pirayesh
    Considering the need to invest in road safety programs, an efficiency analysis on implemented countermeasures is required. The system presented in this study is designed to evaluate the efficiency related to measures annually implemented throughout 30 provinces of Iran, specifically in 2008 and 2009. The model calculates a relative inefficiency index for each province and in each year, using the Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) method. Each province in each year is defined as a Decision Making Unit (DMU) in DEA analysis. The inefficiency index is defined as the proportion of the weighted sum of road fatality risk indices to the...

  7. Assessing The Overall Driving Performance Of Older-Drivers

    BABAEE, Seddigheh; SHEN, Yongjun; HERMANS, Elke; BRIJS, Tom; WETS, Geert; CUENEN, Ariane
    This study investigates the relative performance of older drivers at the individual level, based on specific measures of functional and driving abilities. To do so, 55 participants aged 70 years and above completed tests of an assessment battery of psychological and physical aspects as well as knowledge of road signs; moreover, they took a driving simulator test in which specific driving situations that are known to cause difficulties for older drivers were included. To evaluate the overall performance of each driver, all the above information was combined by using the concept of composite indicators, and the technique of data envelopment analysis,...

  8. Assessing individual driver’s relative performance at curve: applying Data Envelopment Analysis on simulator data

    BABAEE, Seddigheh; SHEN, Yongjun; HERMANS, Elke; WETS, Geert; BRIJS, Tom; ARIEN, Caroline
    This study investigates the performance of drivers at the individual level, at two different curves, using data from a driving simulator in order to identify the best drivers within the sample and to gain insight into the most problematic behavior of each driver. To this end, 34 participants varying in age and gender completed two particular simulator scenarios and their speed, acceleration and lateral position, were monitored at various points. The concept of composite indicators, which combines single indicators into one index score, was employed, and the technique of data envelopment analysis – an optimization model for measuring the relative...

  9. Why do firms save cash from cash flows? Evidence from firm-level estimation of cash-cash flow sensitivities

    D'ESPALLIER, Bert; HUYBRECHTS, Jolien; Schoubben, Frederiek
    We construct firm-level estimates for the cash flow sensitivity of cash (CCFS) by modelling heterogeneous slopes in reduced-form cash equations. This approach allows identifying firms with a high, low or even negative savings propensity. We find that high CCFS firms have higher income variation, suggesting cash buffering is triggered by income shocks. High CCFS firms do not suffer from financing constraints measured by a wide selection of indicators. Our results suggest that the CCFS is not an adequate indicator to capture financing constraints. Rather, a higher CCFS indicates smoothing of income fluctuations by installing a cash buffer that successfully prevents...

  10. Large improvement of phosphorus incorporation efficiency in n-type chemical vapor deposition of diamond

    Ohtani, Ryota; Yamamoto, Takashi; JANSSENS, Stoffel; Yamasaki, Satoshi; Koizumi, Satoshi
    Microwave plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition is a promising way to generate n-type, e.g., phosphorus-doped, diamond layers for the fabrication of electronic components, which can operate at extreme conditions. However, a deeper understanding of the doping process is lacking and low phosphorus incorporation efficiencies are generally observed. In this work, it is shown that systematically changing the internal design of a non-commercial chemical vapor deposition chamber, used to grow diamond layers, leads to a large increase of the phosphorus doping efficiency in diamond, produced in this device, without compromising its electronic properties. Compared to the initial reactor design, the doping...

  11. A generic approach for "shotgun" analysis of the soluble proteome of plant cell suspension cultures

    De Vijlder, Thomas; VALKENBORG, Dirk; Dewaele, Debbie; Remmerie, Noor; Laukens, Kris; Witters, Erwin
    Cell suspension cultures from different plant species act as important model systems for studying cellular processes in plant biology and are often used as "green factories" for the production of valuable secondary metabolites and recombinant proteins. While mass spectrometry based proteome analysis techniques are ideally suited to study plant cell metabolism and other fundamental cellular processes from a birds eye perspective, they remain underused in plant studies. We describe a comprehensive sample preparation and multidimensional 'shotgun' proteomics strategy that can be generically applied to plant cell suspension cultures. This strategy was optimized and tested on an Arabidopsis thaliana ecotype Landsberg...

  12. The 6-min walk test in patients with COPD: walk this way!

    Singh, Sally J.; SPRUIT, Martijn A.; Troosters, Thierry; Holland, Anne E.

  13. Bayesian inference for transportation origin-destination matrices: the Poisson-inverse Gaussian and other Poisson mixtures

    PERRAKIS, Konstantinos; KARLIS, Dimitris; COOLS, Mario; JANSSENS, Davy
    Transportation origin-destination analysis is investigated through the use of Poisson mixtures by introducing covariate-based models which incorporate different transport modelling phases and also allow for direct probabilistic inference on link traffic based on Bayesian predictions. Emphasis is placed on the Poisson-inverse Gaussian model as an alternative to the commonly used Poisson-gamma and Poisson-log-normal models. We present a first full Bayesian formulation and demonstrate that the Poisson-inverse Gaussian model is particularly suited for origin-destination analysis because of its desirable marginal and hierarchical properties. In addition, the integrated nested Laplace approximation is considered as an alternative to Markov chain Monte Carlo sampling...

  14. Visible-light sensitization of boron-doped nanocrystalline diamond through non-covalent surface modification

    Krysova, Hana; Vlckova-Zivcova, Zuzana; Barton, Jan; Petrak, Vaclav; NESLADEK, Milos; Cigler, Petr; Kavan, Ladislav
    A novel simple and versatile synthetic strategy is developed for the surface modification of boron-doped diamond. In a two-step procedure, polyethyleneimine is adsorbed on the hydrogenated diamond surface and subsequently modified with a model light-harvesting donor-pi-bridge-acceptor molecule (coded P1). The sensitized diamond exhibits stable cathodic photocurrents under visible-light illumination in aqueous electrolyte solution with dimethylviologen serving as an electron mediator. In spite of the simplicity of the surface sensitization protocol, the photoelectrochemical performance is similar to or better than that of other sensitized diamond electrodes which were reported in previous studies (2008-2014).

  15. Blood Pressure in Relation to Environmental Lead Exposure in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2003 to 2010

    Hara, Azusa; Thijs, Lutgarde; Asayama, Kei; Gu, Yu-Mei; Jacobs, Lotte; Zhang, Zhen-Yu; Liu, Yan-Ping; NAWROT, Tim; Staessen, Jan A.
    In view of the declining environmental lead exposure in the United States, we analyzed the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (2003-2010) for association of blood pressure and hypertension with blood lead. The 12 725 participants included 21.1% blacks, 20.5% Hispanics, 58.4% whites, and 48.7% women. Blacks compared with non-Blacks had higher systolic and diastolic pressures (126.5 versus 123.9 and 71.9 versus 69.6 mm Hg) and higher hypertension prevalence (44.7 versus 36.8%). Blood lead was lower in whites than in non-whites (1.46 versus 1.57 mu g/dL) and in women than in men (1.25 versus 1.80 mu g/dL). In multivariable analyses...

  16. Adapting inventory models for handling various payment structures using net present value equivalence analysis

    BEULLENS, Patrick; JANSSENS, Gerrit
    Classic inventory models use average cost functions. It is generally accepted that these models should account for the time value of money. They do so not by considering the timing of cash-flows, but by including opportunity costs. The Net Present Value (NPV) framework has long been used to compare these models with. We formalise NPV Equivalence Analysis (NPVEA) under various payment structures, and apply it to a few classic inventory models. While taking the linear approximation is typically part of the process to find equivalence, the essence is to disregard the parameters of a classic inventory model but instead start...

  17. Renal cells exposed to cadmium in vitro and in vivo: normalizing gene expression data

    RAVINDRAN NAIR, Ambily; SMEETS, Karen; KEUNEN, Els; Lee, Wing-Kee; Thévenod, Frank; VAN KERKHOVE, Emmy; CUYPERS, Ann
    Cadmium (Cd) is a toxic metal with a long half-life in biological systems. This half-life is partly as a result of metallothioneins (MTs), metal-binding proteins with a high affinity for Cd. The high retention properties of the kidneys reside in proximal tubular cells that possess transport mechanisms for Cd-MT uptake, ultimately leading to more Cd accumulation. Researchers have studied MT–metal interactions using various techniques including quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR), an efficient tool for quantifying gene expression. Often a poor choice of reference genes, which is represented by their instability and condition dependency, leads to inefficient normalization of gene expression data...

  18. Glutathione and mitochondria determine acute defense responses and adaptive processes in cadmium-induced oxidative stress and toxicity of the kidney

    Ravindran Nair, Ambily; Lee, Wing-Kee; Smeets, Karen; Swennen, Quirine; Sanchez, Amparo; Thévenod, Frank; Cuypers, Ann
    Cadmium (Cd2+) induces oxidative stress that ultimately defines cell fate and pathology. Mitochondria are the main energy-producing organelles in mammalian cells, but they also have a central role in formation of reactive oxygen species, cell injury, and death signaling. As the kidney is the major target in Cd2+ toxicity, the roles of oxidative signature and mitochondrial function and biogenesis in Cd2+-related stress outcomes were investigated in vitro in cultured rat kidney proximal tubule cells (PTCs) (WKPT-0293 Cl.2) for acute Cd2+ toxicity (1–30 µM, 24 h) and in vivo in Fischer 344 rats for sub-chronic Cd2+ toxicity (1 mg/kg CdCl2 subcutaneously,...

  19. Reliable gene expression analysis by reverse transcription-quantitative PCR: reporting and minimizing the uncertainty in data accuracy.

    REMANS, Tony; KEUNEN, Els; BEX, Geert Jan; SMEETS, Karen; VANGRONSVELD, Jaco; CUYPERS, Ann
    Reverse transcription-quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) has been widely adopted to measure differences in mRNA levels; however, biological and technical variation strongly affects the accuracy of the reported differences. RT-qPCR specialists have warned that, unless researchers minimize this variability, they may report inaccurate differences and draw incorrect biological conclusions. The Minimum Information for Publication of Quantitative Real-Time PCR Experiments (MIQE) guidelines describe procedures for conducting and reporting RT-qPCR experiments. The MIQE guidelines enable others to judge the reliability of reported results; however, a recent literature survey found low adherence to these guidelines. Additionally, even experiments that use appropriate procedures remain subject to individual variation...

  20. Implementing an electronic medication overview in Belgium.

    Storms, Hannelore; Marquet, Kristel; Nelissen, Katherine; Hulshagen, Leen; Lenie, Jan; Remmen, Roy; Claes, Neree
    Background: An accurate medication overview is essential to reduce medication errors. Therefore, it is essential to keep the medication overview up-to-date and to exchange healthcare information between healthcare professionals and patients. Digitally shared information yields possibilities to improve communication. However, implementing a digitally shared medication overview is challenging. This articles describes the development process of a secured, electronic platform designed for exchanging medication information as executed in a pilot study in Belgium, called “Vitalink”. Findings: The goal of “Vitalink” is to improve the exchange of medication information between professionals working in healthcare and patients in order to achieve a more efficient...

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