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Now showing items 1 - 7 of 7

  • On-The-Fly computing: automatic service discovery and composition in heterogeneous domains

    Huma, Zille   Gerth, Christian   Engels, Gregor  

    In software markets of the future, customer-specific software will be developed on demand based on distributed software and hardware services. Based on a customer-specific request, available service offers have to be discovered and composed into sophisticated IT services that fulfill the customer’s request. A prerequisite of this vision are rich service descriptions, which comprise structural as well as behavioral aspects of the services, otherwise an accurate service discovery and composition is not possible. However, automatic matching of service requests and offers specified in rich service descriptions for the purpose of service discovery is a complex task, due to the multifaceted heterogeneity of the service partners. This heterogeneity includes the use of different specification languages, different underlying ontologies, or different levels of granularity in the specification itself. In this article, we present a comprehensive approach for service discovery and composition, which overcomes the underlying heterogeneity of the service partners. Based on a realistic case study of our industrial partner from the e-tourism domain, we first introduce an automatic matching mechanism for service requests and offers specified in a rich service description language. In addition, we propose an automatic service composition approach, which determines possible service compositions by composing the service protocols through a composition strategy based on labeled transition systems.
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  • Informed consent practice for obstetric and gynaecologic procedures: A patients' perspective from a developing country

    Zeeshan, Muhammad F.   Yousufi, Zainab   Khan, Durdana   Malik, Farhat R.   Ashfaq, Fizza   Batool, Fatima   Atta, Lyaba   Tariq, Hira   Huma, Zille   Ghafoor, Rahat   Jamil, Ayisha   Qazi, Umair  

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  • A pilot study of depression among older people in Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

    Qadir, Farah   Haqqani, Sabahat   Khalid, Amna   Huma, Zille   Medhin, Girmay  

    BACKGROUND: Depression is common among elderly in developed countries and it is more pronounced in institutional settings. In Pakistan there is a lack of empirical data on depression among this segment of the population particularly with reference to their living arrangements.The objectives of the present study are to report the magnitude of depression among elderly having two different residential arrangements and to examine the association of depression and its established demographic factors.; FINDINGS: Data were collected from 141 respondents. 108 were community residents (m=3D57 and f=3D51) and 33 were living in the care homes (m=3D29 and f=3D4).Prevalence of depression as assessed by Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS) among community and Care Homes (CHs) participants was 31.5 percent and 60.6 percent, respectively.On Centre of Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), 42.6 percent of the community and 69.7 percent of the CH respondents were deemed depressed. Before adjusting for any other potential risk factors the odds of being depressed was significantly increased if the study participants were living in CH, relatively older, female, not currently married, had low educational level, had lower Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores, and reported lower perceived emotional and practical support. In a partially adjusted logistic regression model an increased risk of depression was not confounded by any of the above mentioned risk factors.However, the risk associated was not significant when it was adjusted for social support.; CONCLUSIONS: The findings of the current study are consistent with previous research and throws light on the dire need for interventions to address mental health needs of Pakistani elderly.Implications for improving the mental health status of elderly are also presented.=20
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  • Informed consent practice for obstetric and gynaecologic procedures:A patients' perspective from a developing country

    Zeeshan, Muhammad F.   Yousufi, Zainab   Khan, Durdana   Malik, Farhat R.   Ashfaq, Fizza   Batool, Fatima   Atta, Lyaba   Tariq, Hira   Huma, Zille   Ghafoor, Rahat   Jamil, Ayisha   Qazi, Umair  

    Objectives To assess the surgical informed consent (SIC) practices for obstetric and gynaecological (OB-GYN) procedures at different hospitals in Pakistan. Methods Study was conducted in five hospitals (three public and two private) of Peshawar, Pakistan. A pretested structured tablet-based questionnaire was administered from October 2016 through January 2017 among post-op OB-GYN patients. Results About 27% of the patients (significantly more in private hospitals, P =3D 0.001) did not remember a formal consent administration. Most patients (80%) felt they had no choice about signing the consent. About 65% (mostly in public as compared with private hospitals) mentioned that they would have signed it regardless of the specifics in it (P < 0.001). Patients had increased odds to recall consent if they felt empowered, odds ratio (OR) =3D 4.5; had an opportunity to ask questions, OR =3D 7.2; wanted more explanation, OR =3D 2.8; and had consent administered in their mother tongue, OR =3D 6.9. Discussion Patients' recall of key elements of consent was low. The time spent with the patient for consenting was much shorter than recommended. The printed consent forms were mostly not available in patients' mother tongue. Conclusions Consent practice for OB-GYN procedures was suboptimal in studied hospitals. Patients' attitude toward informed consent practices largely reflected providers' focus on obtaining a legally valid signed consent as opposed to administering a consent that empowers patients to make an informed decision in the absence of any external pressure.
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  • Using technology to scale-up training and supervision of community health workers in the psychosocial management of perinatal depression:a non-inferiority,randomized controlled trial

    Rahman, Atif   Akhtar, Parveen   Hamdani, Syed Usman   Atif, Najia   Nazir, Huma   Uddin, Iftikhar   Nisar, Anum   Huma, Zille   Maselko, Joanna   Sikander, Siham   Zafar, Shamsa  

    Background. The Thinking Healthy Programme (THP) is an evidence-based psychological intervention endorsed by the World Health Organization, tailored for non-specialist health workers in low- and middle-income countries. However, training and supervision of large numbers of health workers is a major challenge for the scale-up of THP. We developed a 'Technology-Assisted Cascaded Training and Supervision system' (TACTS) for THP consisting of a training application and cascaded supervision delivered from a distance. Methods. A single-blind, non-inferiority, randomized controlled trial was conducted in District Swat, a post-conflict area of North Pakistan. Eighty community health workers (called Lady Health Workers or LHWs) were randomly assigned to either TACTS or conventional face-to-face training and supervision by a specialist. Competence of LHWs in delivering THP post-training was assessed by independent observers rating a therapeutic session using a standardized measure, the 'Enhancing Assessment of Common Therapeutic factors' (ENACT), immediately post-training and after 3 months. ENACT uses a Likert scale to score an observed interaction on 18 dimensions, with a total score of 54, and a higher score indicating greater competence. Results. Results indicated no significant differences between health workers trained using TACTS and supervised from distance v. those trained and supervised by a specialist face-to-face (mean ENACT score M =3D 24.97, s.d. =3D 5.95 v. M =3D 27.27, s.d. =3D 5.60, p =3D 0.079, 95% CI 4.87-0.27) and at 3 months follow-up assessment (M =3D 44.48, s.d. =3D 3.97 v. M =3D 43.63, s.d. =3D 6.34, p =3D 0.53, CI -1.88 to 3.59). Conclusions. TACTS can provide a promising tool for training and supervision of front-line workers in areas where there is a shortage of specialist trainers and supervisors.
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  • Dopamine coated Fe3O4 nanoparticles as enzyme mimics for the sensitive detection of bacteria.

    Mumtaz, Shazia   Wang, Li-Sheng   Hussain, Syed Zajif   Abdullah, Muhammad   Huma, Zille   Iqbal, Zafar   Creran, Brian   Rotello, Vincent M   Hussain, Irshad  

    We report a simple and economical colorimetric bacterial sensing strategy with catalytic amplification using dopamine-capped iron oxide (Dop-Fe3O4) nanoparticles. These nanoparticles catalyse the oxidation of a chromogenic substrate in the presence of H2O2 into a green colored product. The catalytic activity of the nanoparticles is inhibited in the presence of bacteria, providing naked eye detection of bacteria at 104 cfu mL-1 and by spectrophotometric detection down to 102 cfu mL-1.=20
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  • Identification and evaluation of novel drug combinations of Aurora kinase inhibitor CCT137690 for enhanced efficacy in oral cancer cells

    Furqan, Muhammad   Huma, Zille   Ashfaq, Zainab   Nasir, Apsra   Ullah, Rahim   Bilal, Aishah   Iqbal, Maheen   Khalid, Muhammad Hashaam   Hussain, Irshad   Faisal, Amir  

    Oral cancer is the most prevalent subtype of head and neck cancers and arises mainly from squamous cells of the oral cavity. Patients with advanced metastatic disease have poor overall survival resulting primarily from limited treatment options. Recent advances in the understanding of molecular basis of oral tumorigenesis provide an opportunity for identification and validation of new drug targets. The deregulated expression of the Aurora family of mitotic kinases, for example, has been associated with pathogenesis and poor prognosis in oral cancer. Here, we have evaluated the efficacy of the pan-Aurora inhibitor (CCT137690) alone and in combination with different chemotherapeutic and targeted drugs to identify its synergistic partners in oral cancer cell lines (ORL-48 and ORL-115). CCT137690 effectively inhibits Aurora kinases in both the cell lines and displays potent antiproliferative activity towards them. Prolonged treatment of these cells with CCT137690 results in abrogated mitotic spindle formation, misaligned chromosome attachment and polyploidy that ultimately leads to apoptotic cell death. We further identified that inhibitors of EGFR (gefitinib) and PI3-kinase (pictilisib) synergize with CCT137690 to inhibit the proliferation of the oral cancer cell lines. Moreover, we demonstrate that polyethylene glycol-based nanocapsules harboring combinations of CCT137690 with gefitinib or pictilisib inhibit the growth of oral cancer cell lines in 3D spheroid cultures and induce apoptosis that is comparable to free drug combinations. In conclusion, we have demonstrated the in vitro efficacy of CCT137690 in oral cancer cell lines, identified novel drug combinations with CCT137690 and synthesized nanocapsules containing these drug combinations for co-administration.
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