Publications by authors named "Muhammad Aamir"

77 Publications

Effect of Temperature and Preservative on Neo-ethanol Formation in Postmortem Whole Blood Samples.

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 2021 Oct;31(10):1159-1162

Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP), Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Objective: To determine the association of temperature, time duration, and preservatives with ethanol neo-genesis in postmortem whole blood samples.

Study Design: Observational cross-sectional study.

Place And Duration Of Study: Department of Chemical Pathology and Toxicology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Rawalpindi, in collaboration with Combined Military Hospital, Rawalpindi from August 2020 to January 2021.

Methodology: Whole blood samples were obtained from cardiac chamber of an autopsy case with aseptic measures and were drawn into six tubes (3 x EDTA tubes and 3 x NaF tubes). These six tubes were stored at 4˚C, 25˚C, and 37˚C. All samples were analysed along with internal standard, on head space gas-chromatography on Day-0, Day-07, Day-14, Day-21, and Day-28 of sampling.

Results: A total of 60 samples out of 10 autopsies, were analysed. Blood alcohol concentrations of all samples were negative on 1st day (Day-0) of analysis. Samples stored at 4˚C did not produce any ethanol at any day of analysis, regardless of preservatives used. Neo-ethanol levels of blood samples stored in EDTA preservative were significantly raised (p <0.001) as compared to samples stored in NaF preservative. Samples stored at 37˚C showed significant increase in neo-ethanol concentration (p <0.001) in comparison with samples stored at 4˚C and 25˚C. Neo-ethanol levels increased with duration of storage till 14th day of analysis.

Conclusion: Sodium fluoride (NaF) should be used as preservative to avoid ethanol neo-genesis during storage and transportation of blood samples for alcohol analysis. Cold chain maintenance is of pivotal importance to exclude false positive blood alcohol results. Key Words: Neo-ethanol, Neo-genesis, Ethylenediaminetetra acetic acid (EDTA), Sodium fluoride (NaF).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.29271/jcpsp.2021.10.1159DOI Listing
October 2021

A framework for efficient brain tumor classification using MRI images.

Math Biosci Eng 2021 06;18(5):5790-5815

Department of Computer Science, Huanggang Normal University, Huangzhou 438000, China.

A brain tumor is an abnormal growth of brain cells inside the head, which reduces the patient's survival chance if it is not diagnosed at an earlier stage. Brain tumors vary in size, different in type, irregular in shapes and require distinct therapies for different patients. Manual diagnosis of brain tumors is less efficient, prone to error and time-consuming. Besides, it is a strenuous task, which counts on radiologist experience and proficiency. Therefore, a modern and efficient automated computer-assisted diagnosis (CAD) system is required which may appropriately address the aforementioned problems at high accuracy is presently in need. Aiming to enhance performance and minimise human efforts, in this manuscript, the first brain MRI image is pre-processed to improve its visual quality and increase sample images to avoid over-fitting in the network. Second, the tumor proposals or locations are obtained based on the agglomerative clustering-based method. Third, image proposals and enhanced input image are transferred to backbone architecture for features extraction. Fourth, high-quality image proposals or locations are obtained based on a refinement network, and others are discarded. Next, these refined proposals are aligned to the same size, and finally, transferred to the head network to achieve the desired classification task. The proposed method is a potent tumor grading tool assessed on a publicly available brain tumor dataset. Extensive experiment results show that the proposed method outperformed the existing approaches evaluated on the same dataset and achieved an optimal performance with an overall classification accuracy of 98.04%. Besides, the model yielded the accuracy of 98.17, 98.66, 99.24%, sensitivity (recall) of 96.89, 97.82, 99.24%, and specificity of 98.55, 99.38, 99.25% for Meningioma, Glioma, and Pituitary classes, respectively.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3934/mbe.2021292DOI Listing
June 2021

Association of Therapeutic Dose of Valproic Acid and Plasma Glycine Levels in Epileptic Patients.

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 2021 Sep;31(9):1020-1023

Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP), Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Objectives: To determine the frequency of hyperglycinemia in epileptic patients taking valproic acid (VPA); and the correlation between therapeutic dose of valproic acid and plasma glycine levels in epileptic patients.

Study Design: Observational, cross-sectional study.

Place And Duration Of Study: Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology Rawalpindi, in collaboration with Combined Military Hospital, Rawalpindi, from August 2020 to January 2021.

Methodology: Plasma glycine levels were analysed on ion exchange chromatography (IEC)-based instrument, Biochrome 30+ of epileptic patients undergoing treatment with anti-epileptic agents. Therapeutic doses of valproic acid were taken as serum trough levels of valproic acid and analysed on chemiluminescence-based Abbott Architect Plus i1000 SR. Mann-Whitney U-test was applied to compare plasma glycine levels in epileptic patients on valproic acid and those on multiple anti-epileptic agents. Spearman's correlation was used to correlate plasma glycine levels in epileptic patients with trough levels of valproic acid, duration of treatment and frequency of fits/year.

Results: A total of 77 participants, upto 15 years of age, were enrolled. Plasma glycine levels were significantly raised (p <0.001) in those epileptics who were on valproic acid (monodrug therapy), in comparison with those on multiple anti-epileptic agents. There were significant positive correlations between glycine levels and trough valproic acid levels (r = 0.830), duration of treatment (r = 0.525) and frequency of seizures (r = 0.326).

Conclusion: Epileptic patients treated with valproic acid (VPA) had raised plasma glycine levels, that increased with therapeutic dose of valproic acid and duration of treatment and was associated with increased frequency of fits in those patients. Key Words: Epilepsy, Seizure, Glycine, Valproic acid.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.29271/jcpsp.2021.09.1020DOI Listing
September 2021

Diagnostic Accuracy of Markers of Insulin Resistance (HOMA-IR) and Insulin Sensitivity (QUICKI) in Gestational Diabetes.

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 2021 Sep;31(9):1015-1019

Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP), Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Objectives: To determine the diagnostic accuracy of HOMA-IR, and QUICKI in diagnosing gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) considering oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) as gold standard.

Study Design: Cross-sectional analytical study.

Place And Duration Of Study: Department of Chemical Pathology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Rawalpindi from September 2020 to February 2021.

Methodology: Pregnant women with gestational age between 24 to 28 weeks, who reported to Endocrine Clinic of AFIP for OGTT, were included in the study. OGTT was performed by following ADA guidelines. Sample for fasting insulin was collected along with first fasting sample of OGTT. HOMA-IR and QUICKI were calculated simultaneously. Percentage was used for qualitative variable while median (IQR 25th-75th) was applied for quantitative variables. OGTT was used as gold standard for calculation of diagnostic accuracy of HOMA-IR and QUICKI.

Results: Out of 182 patients, 74 (40.6%) were found to have GDM on OGTT while 108 (59.4%) had normal OGTT. Women with GDM (n=74) had median values of fasting insulin 15.9 (IQR 11.2-17.77), HOMA-IR 3.5 (IQR 2.6-4.1) and QUICKI 0.31 (IQR 0.30-0.33) as compared to median values of fasting insulin 8.0 (IQR 5.9-10.3), HOMA-IR 1.60 (IQR 1.12-2.03) and QUICKI 0.35 (IQR 0.34-0.37) in patients (n=108) with normal response to OGTT, (p <0.001). On logistic regression analysis, there was a strong association of HOMA-IR and QUICKI with gestational diabetes mellitus (p <0.001, accuracy 84.6%). HOMA-IR at cutoff of ≤2 had 94.5% sensitivity, 72.2% specificity, 70% PPV, 95.1% NPV, and 81.31% overall diagnostic accuracy with 0.913 AUC. QUICKI at cutoff of 0.34 had 86.4% sensitivity, 83.3% specificity, 78.0% PPV, 90.0% NPV, and 84.61% overall diagnostic accuracy with 0.905 AUC.

Conclusion: Fasting insulin and HOMA-IR were significantly higher while QUICKI was lower in patients of GDM as compared to non-GDM pregnant patients at 24 to 28 weeks of gestation. Being more convenient for patients, it has the potential to be used as screening tool for gestational diabetes. Key Words: HOMA IR, QUICKI, Gestational diabetes mellitus, Insulin.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.29271/jcpsp.2021.09.1015DOI Listing
September 2021

Lipid poly (ɛ-caprolactone) hybrid nanoparticles of 5-fluorouracil for sustained release and enhanced anticancer efficacy.

Life Sci 2021 Nov 25;284:119909. Epub 2021 Aug 25.

Department of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmacy, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Bahawalpur 63100, Punjab, Pakistan.

Aims: The present study aimed to develop and characterize poly (ɛ-caprolactone) (PCL) based lipid polymer hybrid nanoparticles for sustained delivery and in-vitro anti-cancer activity in MCF-7 and HeLa cells cancer cell line.

Materials And Methods: The nanoprecipitation method was used for the development of 5-fluorouracil loaded lipid polymer hybrid nanoparticles (LPHNPs). The developed LPHNPs were characterized for physicochemical characteristics and the anti-cancer effect was evaluated in MCF-7 and HeLa cells.

Significant Findings: Six formulations having fixed amount of drug and varied lipid, polymer and emulsifier concentrations were prepared. The particle size was in the range of 174 ± 4 to 267 ± 2.65 nm, entrapment efficiency (92.87 ± 0.594 to 94.13 ± 0.772%), negative zeta potential, optimum polydispersity index and spherical shape. FTIR analysis shows no chemical interaction among the formulation components, DSC analysis reveals the disappearance of 5-FU melting endotherm in the developed LPHNPs suggesting amorphization of 5-FU in the developed system, XRD analysis indicates successful encapsulation of the drug in the lipid polymer matrix. The in-vitro release shows a biphasic release pattern with an initial burst release followed by a sustained release profile for 72 h. The drug loaded LPHNPs exhibited a greater cytotoxic effect than 5-FU solution due to sustained release and increased cellular internalization. The acute toxicity study revealed the safety of the developed carrier system for potential delivery of chemotherapeutic agents.

Significance: The developed LPHNPs of 5-fluorouracil will provide the sustained release behavior of 5-fluorouracil to maximize the therapeutic efficacy and minimize the dose related toxicity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.lfs.2021.119909DOI Listing
November 2021

Relationship between Pressure and Output Parameters in Belt Grinding of Steels and Nickel Alloy.

Materials (Basel) 2021 Aug 20;14(16). Epub 2021 Aug 20.

Department of Mechanical Engineering, IK Gujral Punjab Technical University, Main Campus-Kapurthala, Punjab 144603, India.

Belt grinding of flat surfaces of typical parts made of steel and alloys, such as grooves, shoulders, ends, and long workpieces, is a good alternative to milling. Several factors can influence the belt grinding process of flat surfaces of metals, such as cutting speed and pressure. In this work, the importance of pressure in the belt grinding was investigated in terms of technological and experimental aspects. The grinding experiments were performed on structural alloy steel 30KhGSN2/30KhGSNA, structural carbon steel AISI 1045, corrosion-resistant and heat-resistant stainless steel AISI 321, and heat-resistant nickel alloy KHN77TYuR. The performance of the grinding belt was investigated in terms of surface roughness, material removal rate (MRR), grinding belt wear, performance index. Estimated indicators of the belt grinding process were developed: cutting ability; reduced cutting ability for belt grinding of steels and heat-resistant alloy. It was found that with an increase in pressure , the surface roughness of the processed surface decreased while the tool wear VB and MRR increased. With a decrease in plasticity and difficulty of machinability, the roughness, material removal rate, reduced cutting capacity (Performance index) qper, material removal Q decreased, and the tool wear VB increased. The obtained research results can be used by technologists when creating belt grinding operations for steels and alloys to ensure the required performance is met.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ma14164704DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8402046PMC
August 2021

Fundamentals of Hysteresis in Perovskite Solar Cells: From Structure-Property Relationship to Neoteric Breakthroughs.

Chem Rec 2021 Aug 21. Epub 2021 Aug 21.

State Key Laboratory for Modification of Chemical Fibres and Polymer Materials, Shanghai "Belt & Road" Joint Laboratory of Advanced Fibers and Low-dimension Materials College of Materials Science and Engineering, Donghua University, Shanghai., 201620, P.R. China.

Perovskite solar cells (PSC) have shown a rapid increase in efficiency than other photovoltaic technology. Despite its success in terms of efficiency, this technology is inundated with numerous challenges hindering the progress towards commercial viability. The crucial one is the anomalous hysteresis observed in the photocurrent density-voltage (J-V) response in PSC. The hysteresis phenomenon in the solar cell presents a challenge for determining the accurate power conversion efficiency of the device. A detailed investigation of the fundamental origin of hysteresis behavior in the device and its associated mechanisms is highly crucial. Though numerous theories have been proposed to explain the causes of hysteresis, its origin includes slow transient capacitive current, trapping, and de-trapping process, ion migrations, and ferroelectric polarization. The remaining issues and future research required toward the understanding of hysteresis in PSC device is also discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/tcr.202100150DOI Listing
August 2021

A new Multi Sine-Cosine algorithm for unconstrained optimization problems.

PLoS One 2021 6;16(8):e0255269. Epub 2021 Aug 6.

Soft Computing & Data Mining Centre (SMC), Faculty of Computer Science & Information Technology (FSKTM), Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia, Parit Raja, Malaysia.

The Sine-Cosine algorithm (SCA) is a population-based metaheuristic algorithm utilizing sine and cosine functions to perform search. To enable the search process, SCA incorporates several search parameters. But sometimes, these parameters make the search in SCA vulnerable to local minima/maxima. To overcome this problem, a new Multi Sine-Cosine algorithm (MSCA) is proposed in this paper. MSCA utilizes multiple swarm clusters to diversify & intensify the search in-order to avoid the local minima/maxima problem. Secondly, during update MSCA also checks for better search clusters that offer convergence to global minima effectively. To assess its performance, we tested the MSCA on unimodal, multimodal and composite benchmark functions taken from the literature. Experimental results reveal that the MSCA is statistically superior with regards to convergence as compared to recent state-of-the-art metaheuristic algorithms, including the original SCA.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0255269PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8345889PMC
August 2021

Real Time Multipurpose Smart Waste Classification Model for Efficient Recycling in Smart Cities Using Multilayer Convolutional Neural Network and Perceptron.

Sensors (Basel) 2021 Jul 19;21(14). Epub 2021 Jul 19.

Department of Biocybernetics and Biomedical Engineering, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Automatics, Computer Science and Biomedical Engineering, AGH University of Science and Technology, al. A. Mickiewicza 30, 30-059 Kraków, Poland.

Urbanization is a big concern for both developed and developing countries in recent years. People shift themselves and their families to urban areas for the sake of better education and a modern lifestyle. Due to rapid urbanization, cities are facing huge challenges, one of which is waste management, as the volume of waste is directly proportional to the people living in the city. The municipalities and the city administrations use the traditional wastage classification techniques which are manual, very slow, inefficient and costly. Therefore, automatic waste classification and management is essential for the cities that are being urbanized for the better recycling of waste. Better recycling of waste gives the opportunity to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills by reducing the need to collect new raw material. In this paper, the idea of a real-time smart waste classification model is presented that uses a hybrid approach to classify waste into various classes. Two machine learning models, a multilayer perceptron and multilayer convolutional neural network (ML-CNN), are implemented. The multilayer perceptron is used to provide binary classification, i.e., metal or non-metal waste, and the CNN identifies the class of non-metal waste. A camera is placed in front of the waste conveyor belt, which takes a picture of the waste and classifies it. Upon successful classification, an automatic hand hammer is used to push the waste into the assigned labeled bucket. Experiments were carried out in a real-time environment with image segmentation. The training, testing, and validation accuracy of the purposed model was 0.99% under different training batches with different input features.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s21144916DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8309851PMC
July 2021

Development, characterization and evaluation of in vitro anti-inflammatory activity of Withania coagulans extract and extract loaded microemulsion.

Pak J Pharm Sci 2021 Jan;34(1(Special)):473-479

Department of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Government College University, Faisalabad, Pakistan.

Herbal medicines are gaining importance due to more advantages and less toxic effects. Withania coagulans is natural plant that possesses multiple activities. Its main constituents are withaferin and withanolide. The purpose of present study is to identify main constituent of Withania coagulans and preparation of extract loaded micro emulsions. Withania coagulans fruit extract in methanol/chloroform (1:1) was collected in semisolid form and LCMS was done to identify active compound, and then micro emulsions were prepared using Tween 80: Transcutol (1:1) Frankincense oil, and water to enhance its stability for topical application. Five formulations were prepared by Pseudo ternary phase diagram and evaluated for pH, conductivity, viscosity, drug contents, particle size analysis, and polydispersity. Withania coagulans extract was evaluated for anti-bacterial activity against (Staphylococcus aureus, E. coli, and S. typhi) and anti-fungal activity against (Candida albicans and Aspergillus niger). Anti-inflammatory activity was checked for both extract and Extract based micro emulsion. Among all five formulations F5 shows best physiochemical properties with small globule size, good stability and high anti-inflammatory activity. Based on these results it was concluded that Withania coagulans extract loaded micro emulsions can be used for topical application with promising anti-inflammatory activities. Data for in-vivo studies for checking the topical effect of Withania coagulans is provided elsewhere.
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January 2021

Measurement of Micro Burr and Slot Widths through Image Processing: Comparison of Manual and Automated Measurements in Micro-Milling.

Sensors (Basel) 2021 Jun 28;21(13). Epub 2021 Jun 28.

School of Engineering, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, WA 6027, Australia.

In this study, the burr and slot widths formed after the micro-milling process of Inconel 718 alloy were investigated using a rapid and accurate image processing method. The measurements were obtained using a user-defined subroutine for image processing. To determine the accuracy of the developed imaging process technique, the automated measurement results were compared against results measured using a manual measurement method. For the cutting experiments, Inconel 718 alloy was machined using several cutting tools with different geometry, such as the helix angle, axial rake angle, and number of cutting edges. The images of the burr and slots were captured using a scanning electron microscope (SEM). The captured images were processed with computer vision software, which was written in C++ programming language and open-sourced computer library (Open CV). According to the results, it was determined that there is a good correlation between automated and manual measurements of slot and burr widths. The accuracy of the proposed method is above 91%, 98%, and 99% for up milling, down milling, and slot measurements, respectively. The conducted study offers a user-friendly, fast, and accurate solution using computer vision (CV) technology by requiring only one SEM image as input to characterize slot and burr formation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s21134432DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8271581PMC
June 2021

A novel variant in the DSE gene leads to Ehlers-Danlos musculocontractural type 2 in a Pakistani family.

Congenit Anom (Kyoto) 2021 Sep 13;61(5):177-182. Epub 2021 Jul 13.

Queen Square Institute of Neurology, University College London, London, UK.

The Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) is a group of heritable connective tissue disorders. Common features of EDS include skin hyperextensibility, articular hypermobility, and tissue fragility. It is classified into 13 subtypes, caused by variations of more than 19 different genes. Among these two subtypes, EDS musculocontractural type 1 (EDSMC1/mcEDS-CHST14; MIM# 601776) is caused by biallelic mutations in the CHST14 gene (MIM# 608429) on chromosome 15q14 and EDS musculocontractural type 2 (EDSMC2/mcEDS-DSE;MIM#615539) is caused by a mutation in DSE (MIM# 605942) on chromosome 6q22. In this study, clinical and molecular diagnoses have been performed for a consanguineous Pakistani (Pakhtun) family with five affected siblings, presenting mcEDS-DSE phenotype. Whole-exome sequencing analysis identified a novel homozygous DSE variant (NM_001080976.1; c.2813T>A, p.Val938Asp) in the proband. Sanger sequencing in all available affected members and their obligate carriers confirmed autosomal recessive segregation of the diseased allele. To the best of our knowledge, this variant identified is novel and expands the DSE pathogenicity leading to EDS, musculocontractural type 2. The result obtained has the potential to help in early diagnosis, genetic counseling, and possible therapeutic inventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cga.12436DOI Listing
September 2021

Herbal Formulation Comprised of Methanol Extracts of Tribulus terristris L. and Zingiber officinale Roscoe Has Antihypertensive Effects.

Altern Ther Health Med 2021 Jun 18. Epub 2021 Jun 18.

People prefer to use medicinal plants rather than chemical compounds because they are low cost and have fewer adverse events. Zingiber officinale Roscoe is a natural dietary rhizome with anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties. Tribulus terrestris L. has been used for the treatment of impotence, to enhance sexual drive and performance and for its diuretic and uricosuric effects. The aim of this study was to evaluate the combined effect of 2 extracts, Tribulus terristris and Zingiber officinale (TZ) for antioxidant, enzyme modulation, liver function, kidney function, blood profile and anti-hypertensive effects, which may pave the way for possible therapeutic applications. Antioxidant potential was measured with the 2,2-diphenyl-1-picryl-hydrazyl-hydrate free radical method antioxidant assay (DPPH) and kojic acid was used as the standard drug for tyrosine inhibition assay. The effect of TZ on biochemical parameters of the liver (alanine transferase [ALT], alkaline phosphatase [ALP], aspartate aminotransferase [AST], total serum protein, total serum albumin, serum bilirubin), kidney (blood urea and creatinine) and hematology (hemoglobin, red blood cells [RBC], platelets, thin-layer chromatography, neutrophils, eosinophils, lymphocytes, monocytes, mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular hemoglobin and mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration) of Wister rats were studied by administering 100, 250 and 500 mg/kg-1 body weight TZ dose orally for 28 days. Antihypertensive effects were measured by the invasive method. The results showed that the scavenging percentage of TZ was 78.5 to 80.4, with an IC50 value of 1166.7 µg/ ml and tyrosinase inhibition was 72% compared with 93% for kojic acid. Different doses (100, 250 and 500 mg/kg) did not show an increase in serum biomarkers of liver and renal parameters. A significant increase in hemoglobin, erythrocytes, hematocrit, white blood cells (WBC) and lymphocytes with no significant increase/decrease in platelet count was observed but blood pressure was significantly decreased. Therefore, we concluded that TZ is safe and can be used in the treatment of hypertension.
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June 2021

Reverse Transcription Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification Assay for Ultrasensitive Detection of SARS-CoV-2 in Saliva and Viral Transport Medium Clinical Samples.

Anal Chem 2021 06 25;93(22):7797-7807. Epub 2021 May 25.

Department of Bioengineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801-3028, United States.

The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the shortcomings in the deployment of state-of-the-art diagnostics platforms. Although several polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based techniques have been rapidly developed to meet the growing testing needs, such techniques often need samples collected through a swab, the use of RNA extraction kits, and expensive thermocyclers in order to successfully perform the test. Isothermal amplification-based approaches have also been recently demonstrated for rapid severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) detection by minimizing sample preparation while also reducing the instrumentation and reaction complexity. In addition, there are limited reports of saliva as the sample source, and some of these indicate inferior sensitivity when comparing reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) with PCR-based techniques. In this paper, we demonstrate an improved sensitivity assay from saliva using a two-step RT-LAMP assay, where a short 10 min RT step is performed with only B3 and backward inner primers before the final reaction. We show that while the one-step RT-LAMP demonstrates satisfactory results, the optimized two-step approach allows detection of only few molecules per reaction and performs significantly better than the one-step RT-LAMP and conventional two-step RT-LAMP approaches with all primers included in the RT step. We show control measurements with RT-PCR, and importantly, we demonstrate RNA extraction-free RT-LAMP-based assays for detection of SARS-CoV-2 from viral transport media and saliva clinical samples.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.0c05170DOI Listing
June 2021

Association of Serum Hyaluronic Acid and Laminin with Polymerase Chain Reaction Findings in Hepatitis C Patients.

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 2021 May;30(5):528-531

Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Objectives: To find the association of serum hyaluronic acid and laminin levels with polymerase chain reaction (PCR) results in hepatitis C sero-positive patients; and the correlation among viral load, serum hyaluronic acid, and serum laminin levels.

Study Design: Cross-sectional descriptive study.

Place And Duration Of Study: Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP), Rawalpindi, Pakistan from December 2019 to July 2020.

Methodology: One hundred and eighty diagnosed cases of hepatitis C patients were included in this study. To find association, cross tabulation was done after dividing into two groups according to their median by applying Chi-square test. Correlation of viral load, duration of disease, serum hyaluronic acid and laminin levels were calculated using Spearman's correlation.

Results: There were 124 (68.9%) males and 56 (31.1%) females. Median (IQR) age was 36 (32.3 - 45.0) years; while median duration of disease was 12 (8 - 18) months. There was a strong association between PCR positive cases with hyaluronic acid (p <0.001) and serum laminin levels (p <0.001). A strong relationship was found between viral load and serum hyaluronic acid (r =0.889, p <0.001), as well as with serum laminin (r =0.889, p <0.001).

Conclusion: Current study established a strong significant association between PCR results and disease duration with levels of serum laminin and hyaluronic acid. The levels of serum laminin and serum hyaluronic acid also correlate well with viral load and duration of disease. Key Words: Hepatitis C, Hepatic fibrosis, Hyaluronic acid, Laminin.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.29271/jcpsp.2021.05.528DOI Listing
May 2021

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the colostrum samples from the Yangtze River Region: Exposure profile and risk assessment.

Environ Pollut 2021 Sep 29;285:117253. Epub 2021 Apr 29.

Interdisciplinary Research Academy (IRA), Zhejiang Shuren University, Hangzhou, 310015, China.

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) may transfer into the neonates through the placental transfer and via breastfeeding after the delivery, thus might be harmful to the infant. Sixty colostrum samples in the Yangtze River Region were collected to investigate the concentration, distribution pattern, and enantiomer characteristic of the PCB exposure. Among all samples, over 90% of pollutants were tetra-to hepta-chlorinated PCBs. The sum concentration of the PCB was 512 (IQR: 322-856) ng g lipid weight. Enantiomer fraction (EF) of PCB 95 and PCB 149 was found lower than the racemic value, while EFs of PCB 45 and PCB 136 were found higher and near-racemic state, respectively. The concentration pattern and enantiomeric properties of the PCBs indicated that the mothers from Mianyang had a recent exposure to PCBs. Among all samples, similar exposure and metabolic pathways of the PCB congeners were observed. PCB exposure showed no significant correlation with the birth outcome of the infants, but 43.3% of the infants have potential health risks via breastfeeding.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.117253DOI Listing
September 2021

Natural Disasters Intensity Analysis and Classification Based on Multispectral Images Using Multi-Layered Deep Convolutional Neural Network.

Sensors (Basel) 2021 Apr 9;21(8). Epub 2021 Apr 9.

Electrical Engineering Department, College of Engineering, Najran University Saudi Arabia, Najran 61441, Saudi Arabia.

Natural disasters not only disturb the human ecological system but also destroy the properties and critical infrastructures of human societies and even lead to permanent change in the ecosystem. Disaster can be caused by naturally occurring events such as earthquakes, cyclones, floods, and wildfires. Many deep learning techniques have been applied by various researchers to detect and classify natural disasters to overcome losses in ecosystems, but detection of natural disasters still faces issues due to the complex and imbalanced structures of images. To tackle this problem, we propose a multilayered deep convolutional neural network. The proposed model works in two blocks: Block-I convolutional neural network (B-I CNN), for detection and occurrence of disasters, and Block-II convolutional neural network (B-II CNN), for classification of natural disaster intensity types with different filters and parameters. The model is tested on 4428 natural images and performance is calculated and expressed as different statistical values: sensitivity (SE), 97.54%; specificity (SP), 98.22%; accuracy rate (AR), 99.92%; precision (PRE), 97.79%; and F1-score (F1), 97.97%. The overall accuracy for the whole model is 99.92%, which is competitive and comparable with state-of-the-art algorithms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s21082648DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8069408PMC
April 2021

Cross-linked pH-sensitive pectin and acrylic acid based hydrogels for controlled delivery of metformin.

Pak J Pharm Sci 2020 Jul;33(4):1483-1491

Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Government College University, Faisalabad, Pakistan.

The purpose of present study is to load Metformin HCl into pH-sensitive hydrogels to have sustained release over a period of time. The hydrogel was synthesized from naturally occurring polysaccharide pectin and monomer acrylic acid (AA) using ethylene glycol dimethacrylate (EGDMA) as cross-linker under controlled conditions for polymerization at 45°C for one hr, 50°C for two hrs, 55°C for three hrs, 60°C for four hrs and finally 65˚C for 12 hrs. Hydrogels were characterized for dynamic/equilibrium swelling, sol-gel fraction analysis, diffusion coefficient and percentage porosity. Hydrogels were tested by FTIR, XRD and SEM for structure and surface morphology respectively. Experimental in-vitro drug release data was applied to kinetic models. Formation of strong bonding between pectin and AA was supported by FTIR. The intensity of XRD peaks was reduced in non-loaded and loaded hydrogels compared to active drug substance. The non-loaded hydrogel showed discrete porous structure whereas loaded hydrogels were fibrous and smooth. Hydrogels showed higher swelling in the solutions of pH 6.5 and 7.5 as compared to in the solutions of pH 1.2 and 5.5. The diffusion coefficient decreases with the increase of AA and pectin concentrations. It was observed upon increasing the EGDMA concentration porosity decreases. The release of drug from all compositions of hydrogels took place through non-Fickian diffusion mechanism.
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July 2020

Multiple Carboxylase Deficiency Organic Acidemia as a Cause of Infantile Seizures.

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 2021 Jan;31(1):95-97

Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Multiple carboxylase deficiency organic Acidemia is a rare inherited metabolic disorder. It is autosomal recessive disorder of two types: Holocarboxylase deficiency and Biotinidase deficiency. It is the metabolic disorder resulting from deficiency of biotin as a co-enzyme or reduced activity of biotin-dependent carboxylases (propionyl CoA carboxylase, and 3-methylcrotonyl CoA carboxylase and pyruvate carboxylase). A case of two months' female child is reported, who presented with recurrent infantile seizures and skin rash since birth; and biochemically with metabolic acidosis, hyper-ammonemia (on and off) since birth with multiple hospitalization. She had past history of jaundice. One sibling's death at 2nd day of life due to similar complaints. Initial presentation of raised ammonia and lactate levels were the first indication to this organic academia, which was later proven by increased peak levels of various organic acids on urine organic acid analysis by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Key Words: Multiple carboxylase deficiency, Holocarboxylase synthetase deficiency, Biotinidase deficiency.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.29271/jcpsp.2021.01.95DOI Listing
January 2021

Diagnostic accuracy of cannabinoid testing by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry in human hair.

J Pak Med Assoc 2020 Dec;70(12(B)):2346-2351

COMSATS, Institute of Information Technology, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Objective: To determine the diagnostic accuracy of Cannabinoids testing by LC-MS/MS in human hair and compare it with urine in civil heavy vehicle drivers.

Methods: Current study was a diagnostic accuracy study done in "Armed Forces Institute of Pathology Rawalpindi, Pakistan" from February to November 2017. Urine and hair samples were collected by non-probability convenient sampling technique from 151 heavy vehicle drivers from Punjab. Hair and urine samples were collected from each subject. Separation of compounds was performed on Agilent Poroshell and analyzed using 6460 Triple Quadrapole LC-MS along-with software Mass hunter ©.

Results: Study population (151 civil heavy vehicle drivers) was divided into three main divisions There were 69 (46%) truck drivers,43 (28.5%) twenty-wheeler drivers and 39 (26%) bus drivers. Mean age of study participants was 36±10.82 years. Paired t-test was applied to check mean difference between the two tests' concentration (i.e urine and hair analysis for cannabis) which showed significant difference at p<0.001. Among the different factors of diagnostic accuracy in hair and urine specimens were: Sensitivity (96% and 62%), Specificity (93% and 95%) Positive Predictive Value (88% and 87%), Negative Predictive Value (97% and 82%) respectively. Overall diagnostic accuracy of Cannabinoids detection in hair was 94% while in urine it was 83%. ROC curve showed area under curve of 0.79 and 0.96 for urine and hair samples respectively.

Conclusions: Current study signified hair as a substitute matrix owing to its non-invasive specimen collection, better diagnostic yield and wider detection period compared to urine.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.47391/JPMA.01144DOI Listing
December 2020

Selective Synthesis of Bismuth or Bismuth Selenide Nanosheets from a Metal Organic Precursor: Investigation of their Catalytic Performance for Water Splitting.

Inorg Chem 2021 Feb 19;60(3):1449-1461. Epub 2021 Jan 19.

Department of Chemistry, University of Zululand, Private Bag X1001, Kwa-Dlangezwa 3880, South Africa.

The development of cost-effective, functional materials that can be efficiently used for sustainable energy generation is highly desirable. Herein, a new molecular precursor of bismuth (tris(selenobenzoato)bismuth(III), [Bi(SeOCPh)]), has been used to prepare selectively Bi or BiSe nanosheets via a colloidal route by the judicious control of the reaction parameters. The Bi formation mechanism was investigated, and it was observed that the trioctylphosphine (TOP) plays a crucial role in the formation of Bi. Employing the vapor deposition method resulted in the formation of exclusively BiSe films at different temperatures. The synthesized nanomaterials and films were characterized by p-XRD, TEM, Raman, SEM, EDX, AFM, XPS, and UV-vis spectroscopy. A minimum sheet thickness of 3.6 nm (i.e., a thickness of 8-9 layers) was observed for bismuth, whereas a thickness of 4 nm (i.e., a thickness of 4 layers) was observed for BiSe nanosheets. XPS showed surface oxidation of both materials and indicated an uncapped surface of Bi, whereas BiSe had a capping layer of oleylamine, resulting in reduced surface oxidation. The potential of Bi and BiSe nanosheets was tested for overall water-splitting application. The OER and HER catalytic performances of BiSe indicate overpotentials of 385 mV at 10 mA cm and 220 mV, with Tafel slopes of 122 and 178 mV dec, respectively. In comparison, Bi showed a much lower OER activity (506 mV at 10 mA cm) but a slightly better HER (214 mV at 10 mA cm) performance. Similarly, BiSe nanosheets were observed to exhibit cathodic photocurrent in photoelectrocatalytic activity, which indicated their p-type behavior.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.inorgchem.0c02668DOI Listing
February 2021

: Energy Efficient Joint Time Synchronization and Localization Algorithm Using Ray Tracing Model.

Sensors (Basel) 2020 Dec 17;20(24). Epub 2020 Dec 17.

Department of Mathematics, University of Karachi, Karachi 75300, Pakistan.

In underwater wireless sensor networks (UWSNs), localization and time synchronization are vital services that have been tackled independently. By combining localization and time synchronization, could save nodes energy and improve accuracy jointly. Therefore, it is of great significance to study joint synchronization and localization of underwater sensors with low energy consumption. In this paper, we propose the energy-efficient joint framework of localization and time synchronization, in which the stratification effect is considered by using a ray-tracing approach. Based on Snell's law, ray tracing is applied to compensate for the variation of sound speed, this is one of the contributions of this article. Another contribution of this article is the iteration process which is used to improve the accuracy of localization and time synchronization. Simulation results show that the proposed joint approach outperforms the existing approaches in both energy efficiency and accuracy. This study also calculates Cramer-Rao lower bound to prove the convergence of the proposed technique along with the calculation of complexity of the proposed algorithm to show that the provided study takes less running time compared to the existing techniques.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s20247222DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7766504PMC
December 2020

Dietary exposure and cancer risk assessment of the Pakistani population exposed to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Feb 20;757:143828. Epub 2020 Nov 20.

MOE Key Laboratory of Environmental Remediation and Ecosystem Health, Institute of Environmental Health, College of Environmental and Resource Sciences, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China; Interdisciplinary Research Academy (IRA), Zhejiang Shuren University, Hangzhou 310015, China. Electronic address:

The sixteen-priority polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were determined in twenty-one groceries from six food groups consumed by the Pakistani population. The highest concentration of the total PAHs was found in fish (243 ng g), while the lowest concentration was determined in rice (53 ng g). The total B[a]P dietary exposure for the male group followed an increasing order of children (865.5 ng day) < adolescents (2301 ng day) < seniors (2864 ng day) < adults (3004 ng day), whereas the similar order was also observed for the female group. The male group showed 1-8.5% (mean 5.5%) of higher exposure amount compared to the female group. Among all food categories, wheat (43%) and milk (34%) contributed the greatest while rice (1%) and egg (1%) contributed the smallest to the total dietary exposure of PAHs. The incremental lifetime cancer risk (ILCR) values for the adults and children revealed a potential cancer risk to the both male and female groups. Whereas at the 95th percentiles, the ILCR values for all age and gender groups exceeded the limit (>10), demonstrating a high potential cancer risk in the Pakistani population. The sensitivity analysis found that the daily dietary intake, exposure duration and the cancer slope factor were the most influential variables contributed to the total variance of risk.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.143828DOI Listing
February 2021

Forecasting COVID-19 in Pakistan.

PLoS One 2020 30;15(11):e0242762. Epub 2020 Nov 30.

Department of Statistics, Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan, Mardan, KP, Pakistan.

Objectives: Forecasting epidemics like COVID-19 is of crucial importance, it will not only help the governments but also, the medical practitioners to know the future trajectory of the spread, which might help them with the best possible treatments, precautionary measures and protections. In this study, the popular autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) will be used to forecast the cumulative number of confirmed, recovered cases, and the number of deaths in Pakistan from COVID-19 spanning June 25, 2020 to July 04, 2020 (10 days ahead forecast).

Methods: To meet the desire objectives, data for this study have been taken from the Ministry of National Health Service of Pakistan's website from February 27, 2020 to June 24, 2020. Two different ARIMA models will be used to obtain the next 10 days ahead point and 95% interval forecast of the cumulative confirmed cases, recovered cases, and deaths. Statistical software, RStudio, with "forecast", "ggplot2", "tseries", and "seasonal" packages have been used for data analysis.

Results: The forecasted cumulative confirmed cases, recovered, and the number of deaths up to July 04, 2020 are 231239 with a 95% prediction interval of (219648, 242832), 111616 with a prediction interval of (101063, 122168), and 5043 with a 95% prediction interval of (4791, 5295) respectively. Statistical measures i.e. root mean square error (RMSE) and mean absolute error (MAE) are used for model accuracy. It is evident from the analysis results that the ARIMA and seasonal ARIMA model is better than the other time series models in terms of forecasting accuracy and hence recommended to be used for forecasting epidemics like COVID-19.

Conclusion: It is concluded from this study that the forecasting accuracy of ARIMA models in terms of RMSE, and MAE are better than the other time series models, and therefore could be considered a good forecasting tool in forecasting the spread, recoveries, and deaths from the current outbreak of COVID-19. Besides, this study can also help the decision-makers in developing short-term strategies with regards to the current number of disease occurrences until an appropriate medication is developed.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0242762PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7703963PMC
December 2020

An Adoptive Threshold-Based Multi-Level Deep Convolutional Neural Network for Glaucoma Eye Disease Detection and Classification.

Diagnostics (Basel) 2020 Aug 18;10(8). Epub 2020 Aug 18.

Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, College of Pharmacy, Najran University, Najran 61441, Saudi Arabia.

Glaucoma, an eye disease, occurs due to Retinal damages and it is an ordinary cause of blindness. Most of the available examining procedures are too long and require manual instructions to use them. In this work, we proposed a multi-level deep convolutional neural network (ML-DCNN) architecture on retinal fundus images to diagnose glaucoma. We collected a retinal fundus images database from the local hospital. The fundus images are pre-processed by an adaptive histogram equalizer to reduce the noise of images. The ML-DCNN architecture is used for features extraction and classification into two phases, one for glaucoma detection known as detection-net and the second one is classification-net used for classification of affected retinal glaucoma images into three different categories: Advanced, Moderate and Early. The proposed model is tested on 1338 retinal glaucoma images and performance is measured in the form of different statistical terms known as sensitivity (SE), specificity (SP), accuracy (ACC), and precision (PRE). On average, SE of 97.04%, SP of 98.99%, ACC of 99.39%, and PRC of 98.2% are achieved. The obtained outcomes are comparable to the state-of-the-art systems and achieved competitive results to solve the glaucoma eye disease problems for complex glaucoma eye disease cases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10080602DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7460037PMC
August 2020

Comparison of Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate with Both Serum Creatinine and Cystatin C (eGFRcr-cys) versus Single Analyte (eGFRcr or eGFRcys) Using CKD-EPI and MDRD Equations in Tertiary Care Hospital Settings.

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 2020 Jul;30(7):701-706

Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Objectives: To assess and compare the glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) estimated through MDRD and CKD-EPIcr equations in early and late stages of chronic kidney disease on biochemical marker creatinine (eGFRcr), cystatin C (eGFRcys); and combined (eGFRcr-cys), using CKD-EPI equation.

Study Design: Observational, comparative cross-sectional study.

Place And Duration Of Study: Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology Department, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP), Rawalpindi in collaboration with Armed Forces Institute of Urology (AFIU), Rawalpindi from October 2019 to March 2020.

Methodology: GFR was assessed on the basis of creatinine clearance taking serum and 24-hour urinary specimens. MDRD and CKD-EPI equations were applied to calculate eGFR by serum creatinine (eGFRcr), cystatin C (eGFRcys), and combined (eGFRcr-cys). Pearson correlation technique was used to compare eGFR calculated by different equations with creatinine clearance in different stages of CKD. Performance of equations was evaluated and compared in different stage of CKD.

Results: A total of 181 subjects were enrolled. Median age was 57 years (IQR, 25). Median (IQR) GFR (ml/min/1.73m2) calculated by CrCl, MDRD, CKD-EPIcr, CKD-EPIcys and CKD-EPIcr-cys equations were 45.1 (41.5), 50.6 (23.8), 52.0 (28.0), 43.0 (65.0) and 45 (47), respectively. eGFR calculated by CKD-EPIcr had positive and slightly higher correlation (r=0.880) than MDRD study equation (r=0.867). While comparing the markers, it was observed that CKD-EPIcys had better correlation in early stages of CKD (r=0.889); whereas, CKD-EPIcr performed better in late stages (r=0.896). CKD-EPIcr-cys had the highest correlation (r=0.984) at all stages of CKD.

Conclusion: eGFR calculated by CKD-EPI equation considered as better diagnostic efficient response than MDRD equation in diagnosis and staging of chronic kidney disease. While applying CKD-EPI equation for measurement of eGFR, eGFRcr-cys performs better than any of eGFRcr or eGFRcys at all stages of CKD. Key Words: Estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), Cystatin C (Cys), Creatinine (Cr), Creatinine clearance (CrCl), CKD-EPI equation, MDRD equation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.29271/jcpsp.2020.07.701DOI Listing
July 2020

Transversus Abdominis Plane Block in Laparoscopic Bariatric Surgery-a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials.

Obes Surg 2021 Jan 10;31(1):133-142. Epub 2020 Aug 10.

Department of Surgery, St Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.

Purpose: Effective postoperative analgesia is paramount in patients undergoing bariatric surgery, given their increased predisposition to narcotic-induced respiratory depression. Transversus abdominis plane (TAP) block has shown promise in the enhanced recovery pathway for several abdominal procedures. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to compare the effectiveness of TAP block in laparoscopic bariatric surgery.

Materials And Methods: PubMed, EMBASE and Cochrane databases were searched for relevant articles from inception until June 2020. All randomized trials that compared TAP blocks versus none in laparoscopic bariatric procedures were included. The primary outcome was narcotic consumption at 24 h postoperatively, whilst secondary outcomes included postoperative pain scores at 24 h, time to ambulation, postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) and complication rates. Random effects models were used to calculate pooled effect size estimates.

Results: Seven randomized controlled trials were included, capturing 617 patients. There was high statistical heterogeneity across studies. On random effects analysis, there were no significant differences in narcotic consumption (MD -12.63 mg, 95% CI = -31.67 to 6.41, p = 0.19), pain scores (MD -0.71, 95% CI = -1.93 to 0.50, p = 0.25) or complications (RD = -0.00, 95% CI = -0.03 to 0.03, p = 0.87) between TAP and no TAP groups. However, TAP was associated with significantly less time to ambulation (MD -2.22 h, 95% CI = -3.89 to -0.56, p = 0.009) and PONV (OR = 0.13, 95% CI = 0.05 to 0.35, p < 0.0001).

Conclusions: TAP in laparoscopic bariatric surgery is associated with significantly less PONV and time to ambulation, but similar complication rates, narcotic usage and postoperative pain at 24 h compared to no TAP.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11695-020-04898-2DOI Listing
January 2021

A Secure Communication in IoT Enabled Underwater and Wireless Sensor Network for Smart Cities.

Sensors (Basel) 2020 Aug 2;20(15). Epub 2020 Aug 2.

Department of Computer Science, COMSATS University Islamabad, Sahiwal Campus, Sahiwal 57000, Pakistan.

Nowadays, there is a growing trend in smart cities. Therefore, the Internet of Things (IoT) enabled Underwater and Wireless Sensor Networks (I-UWSN) are mostly used for monitoring and exploring the environment with the help of smart technology, such as smart cities. The acoustic medium is used in underwater communication and radio frequency is mostly used for wireless sensor networks to make communication more reliable. Therefore, some challenging tasks still exist in I-UWSN, i.e., selection of multiple nodes' reliable paths towards the sink nodes; and efficient topology of the network. In this research, the novel routing protocol, namely Time Based Reliable Link (TBRL), for dynamic topology is proposed to support smart city. TBRL works in three phases. In the first phase, it discovers the topology of each node in network area using a topology discovery algorithm. In the second phase, the reliability of each established link has been determined while using two nodes reliable model for a smart environment. This reliability model reduces the chances of horizontal and higher depth level communication between nodes and selects next reliable forwarders. In the third phase, all paths are examined and the most reliable path is selected to send data packets. TBRL is simulated with the help of a network simulator tool (NS-2 AquaSim). The TBRL is compared with other well known routing protocols, i.e., Depth Based Routing (DBR) and Reliable Energy-efficient Routing Protocol (R-ERP2R), to check the performance in terms of end to end delay, packet delivery ratio, and energy consumption of a network. Furthermore, the reliability of TBRL is compared with 2H-ACK and 3H-RM. The simulation results proved that TBRL performs approximately 15% better as compared to DBR and 10% better as compared to R-ERP2R in terms of aforementioned performance metrics.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s20154309DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7435984PMC
August 2020

Late Diagnosis of Paracetamol Poisoning is Always Lethal in Young Adult.

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 2020 Jun;30(6):655-658

Department of Chemical Pathology and Endocrinology, AFIP, National University of Medical Sciences, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Acetaminophen has a remarkable safety profile when prescribed in proper therapeutic doses, but hepatotoxicity can occur when misused or after an overdose. The principal toxic metabolite of acetaminophen is N-acetyl-p-benzoquinone imine (NAPQI). Toxicity should be considered in all suspicious cases because of the ubiquitous and initially asymptomatic nature of acetaminophen intoxication. A case of 29-year male soldier is discussed, who presented with pain in abdomen, vomiting and jaundice of sudden onset. The diagnosis of ischemic liver damage was made at initial presentation. Raised liver function tests and elevated prothrombin time were the first indication to this condition, which were proven by detection of acetaminophen in blood and urine by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. Further supportive evidence of hepatic necrosis was provided by an ultrasound abdomen, giving the final diagnosis of acetaminophen poisoning causing drug-induced liver injury. Key Words: Acetaminophen poisoning, Drug-induced liver injury, Fulminant hepatic failure, N-acetylcysteine, N-acetyl-p-benzoquinone imine (NAPQI).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.29271/jcpsp.2020.06.655DOI Listing
June 2020

Are we underestimating the sources of microplastic pollution in terrestrial environment?

J Hazard Mater 2020 12 17;400:123228. Epub 2020 Jun 17.

College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Donghua University, Shanghai, 201620, China. Electronic address:

Microplastics (MPs, plastic particles < 5 mm) are an ever-increasing global issue due to their widespread occurrence in the environment and negative effects on organisms. Currently, more than 96 % of MPs studies are related to marine systems. However, the majority of marine MPs pollution has been confirmed to originate from land-based sources, evidence of MPs in the terrestrial system cannot be overlooked. In this manuscript, up-to-date knowledge regarding the sources and occurrence of MPs from the terrestrial system is comprehensively reviewed. According to the different studies both in China and abroad, microfibers derived from textile washing attributed approximately 35 % of the MPs identified in the aquatic system. Additionally, personal care and cosmetic products, tires, agricultural plastic films, artificial turfs and road paints, landfill, littering, packaging and construction industry can also release MPs to the environment. The aquatic system plays an important role in MPs transport. By using a one-way ANOVA test, polypropylene (PP) and polyethylene (PE) accounted for significantly higher percentages than other polymer compositions in surface water. Polyamide (PA) and PP accounted for the majority of polymers in soils. PP, PE, and polystyrene (PS) presented an overwhelming proportion in sediment. Atmospheric deposition presents a new vehicle for entering into the wider environment. More research is urgently required on the topic of exposure risk of atmospheric MPs via inhalation. Morphological characteristics including shapes, sizes, and colors have been discussed among waters, soils, sediments and airborne. These source-occurrence implications continuum summaries can bring us new insights that we cannot underestimate the severity of MPs from land-based sources and should pay more attention to MPs contamination in the terrestrial ecosystem.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2020.123228DOI Listing
December 2020
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