Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 109 in total

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  1. Norhisham AR, Abood F, Rita M, Hakeem KR
    Springerplus, 2013 Dec;2(1):9.
    PMID: 23419805 DOI: 10.1186/2193-1801-2-9
    Wood products are highly exposed to infestation by powder post beetles. Dinoderus minutus (bamboo borer) is a wood boring beetle that seriously damage dried bamboo and finished bamboo products. Management of D. minutus using pesticides showed negative effects on environment despite being very costly. By understanding influence of natural climatic conditions on their reproductive behaviour, could help us to develop a cost effective and environmental friendly strategy to cope up with this problem. In the present study, reproductive parameters and egg development of the bamboo borer were determined at 20%, 40%, 56%, 75% and 85% r.h. levels at constant temperature of 30° ± 2°C with 8 L-16D photoregime. From the results, eclosion to first instar larva was recorded at all relative humidities tested. The lowest shortest percentage of hatchability was recorded at 20% and 85% relative humidity with a mean incubation period of 4.63 ± 0.25 and 10.43 ± 0.32 days, respectively. It was noted that pre-ovipositional period decreased from 14.20 ± 0.49 to 7.20 ± 0.31 days as relative humidity increased from 20% to 75% and slightly increased to 8.00 ± 0.37 days at 85% relative humidity. We conclude that female beetles may have a particular hygropreference in oviposition as total egg production increased with increasing relative humidity.
  2. Islam MN, Dungani R, Abdul Khalil H, Alwani MS, Nadirah WW, Fizree HM
    Springerplus, 2013;2:592.
    PMID: 25674417 DOI: 10.1186/2193-1801-2-592
    In this study, a green composite was produced from Oil Palm Trunk Lumber (OPTL) by impregnating oil palm shell (OPS) nanoparticles with formaldehyde resin. The changes of physical, mechanical and morphological properties of the OPS nanoparticles impregnated OPTL as a result of natural weathering was investigated. The OPS fibres were ground with a ball-mill for producing nanoparticles before being mixed with the phenol formaldehyde (PF) resin at a concentration of 1, 3, 5 and 10% w/w basis and impregnated into the OPTL by vacuum-pressure method. The treated OPTL samples were exposed to natural weathering for the period of 6 and 12 months in West Java, Indonesia according to ASTM D1435-99 standard. Physical and mechanical tests were done for analyzing the changes in phenol formaldehyde-nanoparticles impregnated (PF-NPI) OPTL. FT-IR and SEM studies were done to analyze the morphological changes. The results showed that both exposure time of weathering and concentration of PF-NPI had significant impact on physical and mechanical properties of OPTL. The longer exposure of samples to weathering condition reduced the wave numbers during FT-IR test. However, all these physical, mechanical and morphological changes were significant when compared with the untreated samples or only PF impregnated samples. Thus, it can be concluded that PF-NP impregnation into OPTL improved the resistance against natural weathering and would pave the ground for improved products from OPTL for outdoor conditions.
  3. Akita H, Kimura Z, Mohd Yusoff MZ, Nakashima N, Hoshino T
    Springerplus, 2016;5:596.
    PMID: 27247892 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-2237-y
    Microbial degradation of lignin releases fermentable sugars, effective utilization of which could support biofuel production from lignocellulosic biomass. In the present study, a lignin-degrading bacterium was isolated from leaf soil and identified as Burkholderia sp. based on 16S rRNA gene sequencing. This strain was named CCA53, and its lignin-degrading capability was assessed by observing its growth on medium containing alkali lignin or lignin-associated aromatic monomers as the sole carbon source. Alkali lignin and at least eight lignin-associated aromatic monomers supported growth of this strain, and the most effective utilization was observed for p-hydroxybenzene monomers. These findings indicate that Burkholderia sp. strain CCA53 has fragmentary activity for lignin degradation.
  4. Ng CC, Rahman MM, Boyce AN, Abas MR
    Springerplus, 2016;5:469.
    PMID: 27119073 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-2125-5
    The growth response, metal tolerance and phytoaccumulation properties of water spinach (Ipomoea aquatica) and okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) were assessed under different contaminated spiked metals: control, 50 mg Pb/kg soil, 50 mg Zn/kg soil and 50 mg Cu/kg soil. The availability of Pb, Zn and Cu metals in both soil and plants were detected using flame atomic absorption spectrometry. The concentration and accumulation of heavy metals from soil to roots and shoots (edible parts) were evaluated in terms of translocation factor, accumulation factor and tolerance index. Okra recorded the highest accumulation of Pb (80.20 mg/kg) in its root followed by Zn in roots (35.70 mg/kg) and shoots (34.80 mg/kg) of water spinach, respectively. Different accumulation trends were observed with, Pb > Zn > Cu in okra and Zn > Pb > Cu in water spinach. Significant differences (p 
  5. Abdulrazzaq BI, Abdul Halin I, Kawahito S, Sidek RM, Shafie S, Yunus NA
    Springerplus, 2016;5:434.
    PMID: 27104122 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-2090-z
    A review on CMOS delay lines with a focus on the most frequently used techniques for high-resolution delay step is presented. The primary types, specifications, delay circuits, and operating principles are presented. The delay circuits reported in this paper are used for delaying digital inputs and clock signals. The most common analog and digitally-controlled delay elements topologies are presented, focusing on the main delay-tuning strategies. IC variables, namely, process, supply voltage, temperature, and noise sources that affect delay resolution through timing jitter are discussed. The design specifications of these delay elements are also discussed and compared for the common delay line circuits. As a result, the main findings of this paper are highlighting and discussing the followings: the most efficient high-resolution delay line techniques, the trade-off challenge found between CMOS delay lines designed using either analog or digitally-controlled delay elements, the trade-off challenge between delay resolution and delay range and the proposed solutions for this challenge, and how CMOS technology scaling can affect the performance of CMOS delay lines. Moreover, the current trends and efforts used in order to generate output delayed signal with low jitter in the sub-picosecond range are presented.
  6. Ibrahim RW, Ahmad MZ, Al-Janaby HF
    Springerplus, 2016;5:375.
    PMID: 27066382 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-1996-9
    Recently, the generalized hypergeometric function is extended by utilizing the Beta function. Based on this type of function, we introduce a new operator in the open unit disk. The present article investigates some subordination and superordination results for certain normalized analytic functions in the open unit disk, which are acted upon by the generalized Noor integral operator. Some of outcomes improve and generalize previously known outcomes.
  7. Mahmood Zuhdi AS, Zeymer U, Waliszewski M, Spiecker M, Ismail MD, Boxberger M, et al.
    Springerplus, 2016;5:373.
    PMID: 27066381 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-2014-y
    Paclitaxel-coated balloon (PCB) angioplasty in small vessel de novo lesions has favourable outcome and appears to be an alternative to stent implantation. However there is limitted data on its use specifically in small vessel acute coronary syndrome (ACS).
  8. Abdullateef BN, Elias NF, Mohamed H, Zaidan AA, Zaidan BB
    Springerplus, 2016;5:248.
    PMID: 27064567 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-1828-y
    The evaluation and selection of inappropriate open source software in learning management system (OSS-LMS) packages adversely affect the business processes and functions of an organization. Thus, comprehensive insights into the evaluation and selection of OSS-LMS packages are presented in this paper on the basis of three directions. First, available OSS-LMSs are ascertained from published papers. Second, the criteria for evaluating OSS-LMS packages are specified.according to two aspects: the criteria are identified and established, followed by a crossover between them to highlight the gaps between the evaluation criteria for OSS-LMS packages and the selection problems. Third, the abilities of selection methods that appear fit to solve the problems of OSS-LMS packages based on the multi-criteria evaluation and selection problem are discussed to select the best OSS-LMS packages. Results indicate the following: (1) a list of active OSS-LMS packages; (2) the gaps on the evaluation criteria used for LMS and other problems (consisting of main groups with sub-criteria); (3) use of multi-attribute or multi-criteria decision-making (MADM/MCDM) techniques in the framework of the evaluation and selection of the OSS in education as recommended solutions.
  9. Nagrath V, Morel O, Malik A, Saad N, Meriaudeau F
    Springerplus, 2015;4:103.
    PMID: 25763310 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-015-0810-4
    The dot-com bubble bursted in the year 2000 followed by a swift movement towards resource virtualization and cloud computing business model. Cloud computing emerged not as new form of computing or network technology but a mere remoulding of existing technologies to suit a new business model. Cloud robotics is understood as adaptation of cloud computing ideas for robotic applications. Current efforts in cloud robotics stress upon developing robots that utilize computing and service infrastructure of the cloud, without debating on the underlying business model. HTM5 is an OMG's MDA based Meta-model for agent oriented development of cloud robotic systems. The trade-view of HTM5 promotes peer-to-peer trade amongst software agents. HTM5 agents represent various cloud entities and implement their business logic on cloud interactions. Trade in a peer-to-peer cloud robotic system is based on relationships and contracts amongst several agent subsets. Electronic Institutions are associations of heterogeneous intelligent agents which interact with each other following predefined norms. In Dynamic Electronic Institutions, the process of formation, reformation and dissolution of institutions is automated leading to run time adaptations in groups of agents. DEIs in agent oriented cloud robotic ecosystems bring order and group intellect. This article presents DEI implementations through HTM5 methodology.
  10. Arai T, Amalina R, Bachok Z
    Springerplus, 2015;4:71.
    PMID: 25713763 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-015-0862-5
    In order to understand feeding ecology, habitat use and migration of coral reef fish, fatty acid composition was examined in damselfish species Abudefduf bengalensis and A. sexfasciatus collected in the Malaysian South China Sea. Proportions of saturated fatty acids (SAFA) ranged from 49.5% to 74.2%, with the highest proportions in fatty acids, the second highest was monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) ranged from 21.4% to 47.4% and the proportion of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) was the lowest ranged from 3.1% to 6.0%. Palmitic acid (16:0) was the most common in SAFA, oleic acid (C18:1ω9c) was the dominant in MUFA and linolenic acid (C18:3n3) showed the highest proportion in PUFA. Fatty acid concentrations, especially in SAFA and MUFA, could be related to physiological condition, sexual development, and recent feeding events. The diet shift revealed by the fatty acid composition suggests changes in habitat use and migration scale in coral reef environment of genus Abudefduf.
  11. Khan A, Ahmad R, Hamdan AR, Mustaffa MS, Tahir LM
    Springerplus, 2014;3:756.
    PMID: 25674482 DOI: 10.1186/2193-1801-3-756
    The present study examined the predictors of psychological strengths and subjective well-being for dealing with academic stress perceived by university engineering students. Sample of 400 Malaysian (N = 180 boys and N = 220 girls) age varies 18 to 25 years and 400 Indian students (N = 240 boys and N = 160 girls) age varies 18 to 25 years from public universities were participated. Quantitative method was used for data analysis. Findings shows that gender, religiosity and socioeconomic status are significantly influencing psychological strengths and subjective well-being of both Indian and Malaysian students. Findings also revealed that parental involvement and problem solving coping styles were significantly predicting psychological strengths and subjective well-being among both countries participants. Findings of the current study provide the insight for the educators, and parents dealing with adolescents.
  12. Beiranvand Pour A, Hashim M
    Springerplus, 2014;3:130.
    PMID: 25674434 DOI: 10.1186/2193-1801-3-130
    This paper provides a review of the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER), Advanced Land Imager (ALI), and Hyperion data and applications of the data as a tool for ore minerals exploration, lithological and structural mapping. Spectral information extraction from ASTER, ALI, and Hyperion data has great ability to assist geologists in all disciplines to map the distribution and detect the rock units exposed at the earth's surface. The near coincidence of Earth Observing System (EOS)/Terra and Earth Observing One (EO-1) platforms allows acquiring ASTER, ALI, and Hyperion imagery of the same ground areas, resulting accurate information for geological mapping applications especially in the reconnaissance stages of hydrothermal copper and gold exploration, chromite, magnetite, massive sulfide and uranium ore deposits, mineral components of soils and structural interpretation at both regional and district scales. Shortwave length infrared and thermal infrared bands of ASTER have sufficient spectral resolution to map fundamental absorptions of hydroxyl mineral groups and silica and carbonate minerals for regional mapping purposes. Ferric-iron bearing minerals can be discriminated using six unique wavelength bands of ALI spanning the visible and near infrared. Hyperion visible and near infrared bands (0.4 to 1.0 μm) and shortwave infrared bands (0.9 to 2.5 μm) allowed to produce image maps of iron oxide minerals, hydroxyl-bearing minerals, sulfates and carbonates in association with hydrothermal alteration assemblages, respectively. The techniques and achievements reviewed in the present paper can further introduce the efficacy of ASTER, ALI, and Hyperion data for future mineral and lithological mapping and exploration of the porphyry copper, epithermal gold, chromite, magnetite, massive sulfide and uranium ore deposits especially in arid and semi-arid territory.
  13. Siew NM, Amir N, Chong CL
    Springerplus, 2015;4:8.
    PMID: 25674494 DOI: 10.1186/2193-1801-4-8
    Whilst much attention has focused on project-based approaches to teaching Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects, little has been reported on the views of South-East Asian science teachers on project-based STEM approaches. Such knowledge could provide relevant information for education training institutions on how to influence innovative teaching of STEM subjects in schools. This article reports on a study that investigated the perceptions of 25 pre-service and 21 in-service Malaysian science teachers in adopting an interdisciplinary project-based STEM approach to teaching science. The teachers undertook an eight hour workshop which exposed them to different science-based STEM projects suitable for presenting science content in the Malaysian high school science syllabus. Data on teachers' perceptions were captured through surveys, interviews, open-ended questions and classroom discussion before and at the end of the workshop. Study findings showed that STEM professional development workshops can provide insights into the support required for teachers to adopt innovative, effective, project-based STEM approaches to teaching science in their schools.
  14. Abdul Ghani AS, Mat Isa NA
    Springerplus, 2014;3:757.
    PMID: 25674483 DOI: 10.1186/2193-1801-3-757
    The quality of underwater image is poor due to the properties of water and its impurities. The properties of water cause attenuation of light travels through the water medium, resulting in low contrast, blur, inhomogeneous lighting, and color diminishing of the underwater images. This paper proposes a method of enhancing the quality of underwater image. The proposed method consists of two stages. At the first stage, the contrast correction technique is applied to the image, where the image is applied with the modified Von Kries hypothesis and stretching the image into two different intensity images at the average value with respects to Rayleigh distribution. At the second stage, the color correction technique is applied to the image where the image is first converted into hue-saturation-value (HSV) color model. The modification of the color component increases the image color performance. Qualitative and quantitative analyses indicate that the proposed method outperforms other state-of-the-art methods in terms of contrast, details, and noise reduction.
  15. Atif M, Sulaiman SA, Shafie AA, Ali I, Asif M
    Springerplus, 2012;1:40.
    PMID: 23961366 DOI: 10.1186/2193-1801-1-40
    Tuberculin skin testing (TST) and chest X-ray are the conventional methods used for tracing suspected tuberculosis (TB) patients. The purpose of the study was to calculate the cost incurred by Penang General Hospital on performing one contact tracing procedure using an activity based costing approach. Contact tracing records (including the demographic profile of contacts and outcome of the contact tracing procedure) from March 2010 until February 2011 were retrospectively obtained from the TB contact tracing record book. The human resource cost was calculated by multiplying the mean time spent (in minutes) by employees doing a specific activity by their per-minute salaries. The costs of consumables, Purified Protein Derivative vials and clinical equipment were obtained from the procurement section of the Pharmacy and Radiology Departments. The cost of the building was calculated by multiplying the area of space used by the facility with the unit cost of the public building department. Straight-line deprecation with a discount rate of 3% was assumed for the calculation of equivalent annual costs for the building and machines. Out of 1024 contact tracing procedures, TST was positive (≥10 mm) in 38 suspects. However, chemoprophylaxis was started in none. Yield of contact tracing (active tuberculosis) was as low as 0.5%. The total unit cost of chest X-ray and TST was MYR 9.23 (2.90 USD) & MYR 11.80 (USD 3.70), respectively. The total cost incurred on a single contact tracing procedure was MYR 21.03 (USD 6.60). Our findings suggest that the yield of contact tracing was very low which may be attributed to an inappropriate prioritization process. TST may be replaced with more accurate and specific methods (interferon gamma release assay) in highly prioritized contacts; or TST-positive contacts should be administered 6H therapy (provided that the chest radiography excludes TB) in accordance with standard protocols. The unit cost of contact tracing can be significantly reduced if radiological examination is done only in TST or IRGA positive contacts.
  16. Kılıçman A, Omran M
    Springerplus, 2016;5:100.
    PMID: 26877898 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-1711-x
    In this article, we define the fractional Mellin transform by using Riemann-Liouville fractional integral operator and Caputo fractional derivative of order [Formula: see text] and study some of their properties. Further, some properties are extended to fractional way for Mellin transform.
  17. Bulama LM, Kılıçman A
    Springerplus, 2016;5:103.
    PMID: 26877901 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-1723-6
    The aim of this article is to expand and generalize some approximation methods proposed by Tian and Di (J Fixed Point Appl, 2011. doi:10.1186/1687-1812-21) to the class of [Formula: see text]-total asymptotically strict pseudocontraction to solve the fixed point problem as well as variational inequality problem in the frame work of Hilbert space. Further, the results presented in this paper extend, improve and also generalize several known results in the literature .
  18. Yusof F, Khanahmadi S, Amid A, Mahmod SS
    Springerplus, 2016;5:57.
    PMID: 26904389 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-015-1621-3
    Cocoa pod husk (CPH) is a by-product of cocoa production obtained after removing the beans from the fruit. The analysis of CPH has shown that it contains high amounts of protein. This study is aimed to utilize this protein source in hydrolase enzyme production. In this study, seven hydrolase enzymes (amylase, fructosyltransferase, mannanase, glucosidase, glucanase, lipase and protease) were screened from CPH for the first time for feasible industrial production. Among these hydrolases, lipase was chosen for the next steps of experiments as it has a lot of applications in different industries. The extraction of high active lipase from CPH has been done under optimum conditions. The condition that was optimum for the three major factors was achieved using Face centered central composite design (FCCCD) with response surface methodology (RSM) to obtain the highest enzyme activity of crude lipase from CPH. The optimum condition of extraction is used for preparation of cross-linked enzyme aggregate (CLEA). For the production of immobilized biocatalyst, the technique of CLEA is considered as an effective technique for its industrially attractive advantages. Referring to the results of OFAT, CLEA-lipase was prepared in the best condition at the presence of 30 mM ammonium sulphate, 70 mM glutaraldehyde with 0.23 mM Bovine serum albumin as an additive. Immobilization effectively improved the stability of lipase against various organic solvents.
  19. Zulkifly HH, Clavarino A, Kassab YW, Dingle K
    Springerplus, 2016;5:6.
    PMID: 26759745 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-015-1639-6
    There is some evidence that self-rated perceptions of health are predictive of objective health outcomes, including cardiovascular disease, and mortality. The objective of this study was to examine the prospective association between perceptions of health during pregnancy and cardiovascular risk factors of mothers 21 years after the pregnancy. Data used were from the Mater University Study of Pregnancy (MUSP), a community-based prospective birth cohort study begun in Brisbane, Australia, in 1981. Logistic regression analyses were conducted. Data were available for 3692 women. Women who perceived themselves as not having a straight forward pregnancy had twice the odds (adjusted OR 2.0, 95 % CI 1.1-3.8) of being diagnosed with heart disease 21 years after the pregnancy when compared with women with a straight forward pregnancy (event rate of 5.2 versus 2.6 %). Women who experienced complications (other than serious pregnancy complications) during their pregnancy were also at 30 % increased odds (adjusted OR 1.3, 95 % CI 1.0-1.6) of having hypertension 21 years later (event rate of 25.7 versus 20 %). As a whole, our study suggests that pregnant women who perceived that they had complications and did not have a straight forward pregnancy were likely to experience poorer cardiovascular outcomes 21 years after that pregnancy.
  20. Mkpojiogu EO, Hashim NL
    Springerplus, 2016;5:197.
    PMID: 27026893 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-1860-y
    Customer satisfaction is the result of product quality and viability. The place of the perceived satisfaction of users/customers for a software product cannot be neglected especially in today competitive market environment as it drives the loyalty of customers and promotes high profitability and return on investment. Therefore understanding the importance of requirements as it is associated with the satisfaction of users/customers when their requirements are met is worth the pain considering. It is necessary to know the relationship between customer satisfactions when their requirements are met (or their dissatisfaction when their requirements are unmet) and the importance of such requirement. So many works have been carried out on customer satisfaction in connection with the importance of requirements but the relationship between customer satisfaction scores (coefficients) of the Kano model and users/customers self-stated requirements importance have not been sufficiently explored. In this study, an attempt is made to unravel the underlying relationship existing between Kano model's customer satisfaction indexes and users/customers self reported requirements importance. The results of the study indicate some interesting associations between these considered variables. These bivariate associations reveal that customer satisfaction index (SI), and average satisfaction coefficient (ASC) and customer dissatisfaction index (DI) and average satisfaction coefficient (ASC) are highly correlated (r = 96 %) and thus ASC can be used in place of either SI or DI in representing customer satisfaction scores. Also, these Kano model's customer satisfaction variables (SI, DI, and ASC) are each associated with self-stated requirements importance (IMP). Further analysis indicates that the value customers or users place on requirements that are met or on features that are incorporated into a product influences the level of satisfaction such customers derive from the product. The worth of a product feature is indicated by the perceived satisfaction customers get from the inclusion of such feature in the product design and development. The satisfaction users/customers derive when a requirement is fulfilled or when a feature is placed in the product (SI or ASC) is strongly influenced by the value the users/customers place on such requirements/features when met (IMP). However, the dissatisfaction users/customers received when a requirement is not met or when a feature is not incorporated into the product (DI), even though related to self-stated requirements importance (IMP), does not have a strong effect on the importance/worth (IMP) of that given requirement/feature as perceived by the users or customers. Therefore, since customer satisfaction is proportionally related to the perceived requirements importance (worth), it is then necessary to give adequate attention to user/customer satisfying requirements (features) from elicitation to design and to the final implementation of the design. Incorporating user or customer satisfying requirements in product design is of great worth or value to the future users or customers of the product.
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