Megazyme International Ireland
  • Wicklow, County Wicklow, Ireland
Recent publications
Researchers and scientists face globally, and parallel to their core research activities, increased pressure to successfully lead or participate in fundraising activities. The field has been experiencing fierce competition with success rates of proposals falling dramatically down, while the complexity of the funding instruments and the need for acquiring a wide understanding of issues related to impacts, research priorities in connection to wider national and transnational (e.g. EU-wide) policy aspects, increase discomfort levels for the individual researchers and scientists. In this paper, we suggest the use of transdisciplinary AI tools to support (semi-)- automation of several steps of the application and proposal preparation processes.
Objective To implement and measure the effects of a multi-level multi-sectoral social behavior change (SBC) intervention in Agago District of Northern Uganda and to determine the potential for scale-up. Intervention Compare the Nutrition Impact and Positive Practice (NIPP) approach to a NIPP+ approach. The NIPP approach involves nutrition education and SBC, whereas the NIPP+ adds agricultural inputs, training, and tools to support improved farm and water quality practices. The intervention effect will be measured through lower levels of aflatoxin in grain, lower water contamination, and improved knowledge on nutrition and health. Design This is a three-arm cluster-randomized controlled superiority trial (cRCT). The study arms include the following: group 1: NIPP; group 2: NIPP+, and group 3: control. Groups 1 and 2 will receive a 12-week intervention (NIPP or NIPP+) with active monitoring and longitudinal follow-up at 2, 6, and 12 months post-intervention. Additionally, an in-depth process and performance evaluation of each intervention arm will be undertaken using quantitative and qualitative methods. A total of 60 clusters from 5 subcounties of the Agago district will be randomly selected, and 15 households per cluster will be recruited using specific inclusion/exclusion criteria for a total of 900 households (300/arm). Respondents for the qualitative portion will be purposely selected. Analysis We will collect data from all participants at 3 time points: baseline, endline, and 12 months post-intervention. The analysis will utilize intent-to-treat (ITT) using the initial randomization of the treatment arms to determine the overall impact of having the NIPP vs. NIPP+ vs. control. Mixed effects models will be used to determine the role of time-variant and invariant individual household, and community characteristics, as well as measures of exposure and integration on key outcome indicators. A difference-in-difference analysis (baseline/endline, baseline/12 months post-intervention, endline/12 months post-intervention) will also be used to triangulate findings. Trial registration NCT04209569 . One Nutrition in Complex Environments (ONCE) Registered 24 December 2019
Language learning in tourism is increasingly embracing digital technologies for both synchronous and asynchronous content delivery and interaction. Blended learning combining online and traditional face-to-face forms as well as immersive forms such as 3D virtual worlds, where participants may travel as they learn from the comfort of their sofa, offer promising benefits, namely in times of pandemic and other turbulent events. Involving culturally and geographically distant tutors in the learning process may increase learners’ motivation as well as satisfaction, provided that the course curricula and lesson plans utilize the potential by appropriate selection of activities. Despite all the potential benefits, however, troubles caused by the increased complexity of digitally enhanced courses may ruin learners’ experience. The paper provides a conceptual basis for a systemic approach in planning, creating, and delivering courses, considering both technical and psychological aspects, which may assist in the prevention or mitigation of the challenges. To provide a relevant context, presentations of several language schools are briefly examined. The study of changes in their presentations between 2014 and 2021, in the light of web search trends, provides an additional glimpse into the evolution of the adoption and perception of relevant forms of education and technologies, further supporting the necessity of a systematic approach. Experience from three separate projects implementing innovative language courses collected both qualitatively and quantitatively via questionnaires is summarized, pointing out both successes and challenges.
This paper describes a tool using an extended Data Privacy Vocabulary (the DPV) to audit and monitor GDPR compliance of international transfers of personal data. New terms were identified which have been proposed as extensions to the DPV W3C Working Group. A prototype software tool was built based on the model plus a set of validation rules, and synthetic use-cases created to test the capabilities of the model and tool (together a compliance framework). This framework was created because the rules around international transfer compliance are complex and changing, there is an absence of a common approach to ensuring compliance, few tools exist to assist, and those that do lack interoperability. Evaluation results demonstrate that the proposed model improves compliance identification and standardisation. The tool received positive feedback from the data protection practitioners who participated in the evaluation, and an initial version of is now in use in one financial services organisation. While currently the tool only addresses international transfers, in theory the framework can be extended through further work to the broader area of compliance of other aspects of the GPDR.
Aim: Poor adherence to chronic disease therapy is a critical global problem that negatively effects the long-term therapy for chronic diseases, resulting in negative population health and economic effects. The WHO multidimensional model proposed a systems-based approach for improving adherence to chronic disease therapy. Patients & methods: In the current study, the WHO five-dimension framework was used to evaluate factors among, chronic-disease patients in the United Arab Emirates. Results: We show that patient’s understanding of disease, involvement in treatment decision, age more than 40 years, time spent with physician and fear of how patients were perceived by others were the most predictive factors associated with a high ability to self-manage a chronic disease. Conclusion: Sociocultural factors have an indirect impact on disease self-management.
Artificial intelligence (AI)-based diagnostic algorithms have achieved ambitious aims through automated image pattern recognition. For neurological disorders, this includes neurodegeneration and inflammation. Scalable imaging technology for big data in neurology is optical coherence tomography (OCT). We highlight that OCT changes observed in the retina, as a window to the brain, are small, requiring rigorous quality control pipelines. There are existing tools for this purpose. Firstly, there are human-led validated consensus quality control criteria (OSCAR-IB) for OCT. Secondly, these criteria are embedded into OCT reporting guidelines (APOSTEL). The use of the described annotation of failed OCT scans advances machine learning. This is illustrated through the present review of the advantages and disadvantages of AI-based applications to OCT data. The neurological conditions reviewed here for the use of big data include Alzheimer disease, stroke, multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson disease, and epilepsy. It is noted that while big data is relevant for AI, ownership is complex. For this reason, we also reached out to involve representatives from patient organizations and the public domain in addition to clinical and research centers. The evidence reviewed can be grouped in a five-point expansion of the OSCAR-IB criteria to embrace AI (OSCAR-AI). The review concludes by specific recommendations on how this can be achieved practically and in compliance with existing guidelines.
Ireland has a rather distinctive relationship with the European Union (EU). Ireland embraced the European project from the start of its EU membership, and the values and benefits of membership have been significant for Ireland. Brexit and EU solidarity with Ireland in the Brexit negotiations in particular, increased EU standing in Ireland. Although Ireland has not escaped dimensions of populism or Euroscepticism to varying degrees, this chapter analyses and explores why Ireland remains consistently a pro-EU country.
The importance of selectively measuring available and unavailable carbohydrates in the human diet has been recognized for over 100 years. The levels of available carbohydrates in diets can be directly linked to major diseases of the western world, namely Type II diabetes and obesity. Methodology for measurement of total carbohydrates by difference was introduced in the 1880s, and this forms the basis of carbohydrate determination in USA. In the UK, a method to directly measure available carbohydrates was introduced in the 1920s to assist diabetic patients with food selection. The aim of the current work was to develop simple, specific and reliable methods for available carbohydrates and digestible starch (and resistant starch). The major component of available carbohydrates in most foods is digestible starch. Simple methods for measurement of rapidly digested starch, slowly digested starch, total digestible starch, resistant starch and available carbohydrates have been developed and the digestibility of phosphate cross‐linked starch has been studied in detail. The resistant starch procedure developed is an update of current procedures and incorporates incubation conditions with pancreatic α‐amylase (PAA) and amyloglucosidase (AMG) that parallel those used AOAC Method 2017.16 for total dietary fiber. Available carbohydrates are measured as glucose, fructose and galactose, following complete and selective hydrolysis of digestible starch, maltodextrins, maltose, sucrose and lactose to glucose, fructose and galactose. Sucrose is hydrolyzed with a specific sucrase enzyme that has no action on fructo‐oligosaccharides (FOS). The currently described “available carbohydrates” method together with the total dietary fiber method (AOAC Method 2017.16) allows the measurement of all carbohydrates in food products, including digestible starch. This paper describes a simple and specific method for measurement of available carbohydrates in cereal, food and feed products. This is the first method that provides correct measurement of digestible starch and sucrose in the presence of FOS. Such methodology is essential for accurate labelling of food products, allowing consumers to make informed decisions in food selection. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Most commonly used methods for the measurement of starch in food, feeds and ingredients employ the combined action of α‐amylase and amyloglucosidase to hydrolyse the starch to glucose, followed by glucose determination with a glucose oxidase/peroxidase reagent. Recently, a number of questions have been raised concerning possible complications in starch analytical methods. In this paper, each of these concerns, including starch hydrolysis, isomerisation of maltose to maltulose, effective hydrolysis of maltodextrins by amyloglucosidase, enzyme purity and hydrolysis of sucrose and β‐glucans have been studied in detailed. Results obtained for a range of starch containing samples using AOAC Methods 996.11 and 2014 .10 are compared and a new simpler format for starch measurement is introduced. With this method that employs a thermostable α‐amylase (as distinct from a heat stable α‐amylase) which is both stable and active at 100°C and pH 5.0, 10 samples can be analysed within 2 h, as compared to the 6 h required with AOAC Method 2014.10.
Context: Decreased postural balance is a primary risk factor for lower-limb injuries. Cryotherapy is commonly utilized by clinicians to provide local analgesia for minor acute knee joint musculoskeletal injuries during breaks in play or at halftime. Its effect on dynamic postural balance remains unclear. Objective: To investigate the acute effects of a 15-minute knee joint cryotherapy application on dynamic postural balance, as assessed primarily via a clinically oriented outcome measure. Design: Experimental study. Setting: University biomechanics laboratory. Patients or participants: A total of 28 elite-level college male field-sport athletes. Intervention: Participants were tested on the anterior, posteromedial, and posterolateral reach directions of the Star Excursion Balance Test both before and after a 15-minute knee joint cryotherapy application. Main outcome measure(s): Normalized reach distances, 3-dimensional knee joint kinematics, sagittal plane hip and ankle joint kinematics, as well as fractal dimension of the center-of-pressure path during the performance of the anterior, posteromedial, and posterolateral reach directions of the Star Excursion Balance Test. Results: There was a statistically significant decrease in reach distance scores achieved on anterior, posteromedial, and posterolateral directions of the Star Excursion Balance Test from precryotherapy to postcryotherapy (P < .05). None of the decreases in reach distance scores exceeded the reported smallest detectable difference values. No significant differences were observed in hip, knee, or ankle joint kinematics (P > .05). No significant change in fractal dimension was observed for any reach direction following cryotherapy application (P > .05). Conclusions: The results of the present study indicate that dynamic postural balance is unlikely to be adversely affected immediately following cryotherapy application to the knee joint.
Public support for EU membership in Ireland is amongst the highest of any member state, and it has been steadily growing. In a recent poll, it was found that 88% of Irish people think that the country should remain a member of the EU. The same poll showed that 87% of people believed that Ireland has benefited from its membership in the EU. That these two numbers are almost identical is neither coincidental nor surprising. Although it would be unfair to characterise the Irish approach to the EU as transactional, it would be equally mistaken to say that Irish support for the EU is based purely on ideology and values. Ireland has traditionally taken a pragmatic approach to the EU and the integration process.
Objective To describe the signalment, etiology, and short‐term outcome of dogs and cats presenting in a coma or stupor. Design Retrospective study conducted between May 2012 and February 2015. Setting Multicenter out‐of‐hours emergency service provider. Animals Three hundred eighty‐six patients presenting in a coma or stupor to a multicenter out‐of‐hours emergency care provider. Interventions None. Measurements and Main Results Records were reviewed to determine the most likely etiology of coma or stupor. Short‐term outcomes were defined as deceased (died or euthanized) or transferred (case handed over to a daytime clinic or discharged). There were 168 dogs (coma n = 112, stupor n = 56) and 218 cats (coma n = 148, stupor n = 70) identified. Coma and stupor were more prevalent in cats compared to dogs, and Chihuahuas were over represented. Blood glucose concentrations were frequently outside established reference intervals. Excluding undetermined causes, the most common causes in dogs included traumatic brain injury (TBI) 16.0% (n = 27, deceased n = 22), hypoglycemia 10.7% (n = 18, deceased n = 8), shock 10.1% (n = 17, deceased n = 16), seizure 9.5% (n = 16, deceased n = 13), and renal or hepatic dysfunction 5.3% (n = 9, deceased n = 7). For cats, the most common causes included TBI 21.6% (n = 47, deceased n = 38), renal or hepatic dysfunction 13.3% (n = 29, deceased n = 25), intoxication 10.1% (n = 22, deceased n = 18), hypoglycemia 6.0% (n = 13, deceased n = 4), and shock 5.0% (n = 11, deceased n = 8). When treatment was attempted, 46.0% of dogs (n = 44/96) and 41.2% of cats (n = 35/85) survived to be transferred. Compared to all other etiologies, death was less likely when coma or stupor was attributed to hypoglycemia. Conclusion In cases where a cause was determined, TBI was the predominant etiology of coma and stupor for both species. With the exception of coma and stupor attributed to hypoglycemia, the overall short‐term prognosis was poor.
This paper presents a methodology of finding explicit boundaries for some financial quantities via comparison of stochastic processes. The path-wise comparison theorem is used to establish domination of the stock price process by a process with a known distribution that is relatively simple. We demonstrate how the comparison theorem can be applied in the constant elasticity of variance model to derive closed-form expressions for option price bounds, an approximate hedging strategy and a conditional value-at-risk estimate. We also provide numerical examples and compare precision of our method with the distribution-free approach.
The monitoring of protein biomarkers for the early prediction of cell stress and death is a valuable tool for process characterization and efficient biomanufacturing control. A representative set of six proteins, namely GPDH, PRDX1, LGALS1, CFL1, TAGLN2 and MDH, which were identified in a previous CHO-K1 cell death model using discovery LC-MSE was translated into a targeted liquid chromatography multiple reaction monitoring mass spectrometry (LC-MRM-MS) platform and verified. The universality of the markers was confirmed in a cell growth model for which three Chinese hamster ovary host cell lines (CHO-K1, CHO-S, CHO-DG44) were grown in batch culture in two different types of basal media. LC-MRM-MS was also applied to spent media (n = 39) from four perfusion biomanufacturing series. Stable isotope-labelled peptide analogues and a stable isotope-labelled monoclonal antibody were used for improved protein quantitation and simultaneous monitoring of the workflow reproducibility. Significant increases in protein concentrations were observed for all viability marker proteins upon increased dead cell numbers and allowed for discrimination of spent media with dead cell densities below and above 1 × 106 dead cells/mL which highlights the potential of the selected viability marker proteins in bioprocess control. Overview of the LC-MRM-MS workflow for the determination of proteomic markers in conditioned media from the bioreactor that correlate with CHO cell death
Women with disabilities until now have remained on the periphery of social justice movements due to the invisibility of women with disabilities issues, the limitations of current contextual and situational analysis to reflect the intersectionality of gender and disability and the minimal resources that organizations representing women with disabilities receive to do their work. While this is slowly changing, much more needs to be urgently done so that women with disabilities can participate in and benefit from development.
Cell viability has a critical impact on product quantity and quality during the biomanufacturing of therapeutic proteins. An advanced understanding of changes in the cellular and conditioned media proteomes upon cell stress and death is therefore needed for improved bioprocess control. Here, a high pH / low pH reversed phase data independent 2D-LC-MSE discovery proteomics platform was applied to study the cellular and conditioned media proteomes of CHO-K1 apoptosis and necrosis models where cell death was induced by staurosporine exposure or aeration shear in a benchtop bioreactor, respectively. Functional classification of gene ontology terms related to molecular functions, biological processes and cellular components revealed both cell death independent and specific features. In addition, label free quantitation using the Hi3 approach resulted in a comprehensive shortlist of 23 potential cell viability marker proteins with highest abundance and a significant increase in the conditioned media upon induction of cell death, including proteins related to cellular stress response, signal mediation, cytoskeletal organization, cell differentiation, cell interaction as well as metabolic and proteolytic enzymes which are interesting candidates for translating into targeted analysis platforms for monitoring bioprocessing response and increasing process control. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
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Bray Business Park, Southern Cross Road, Wicklow, County Wicklow, Ireland
Head of institution
Professor Barry V. McCleary