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Adiponectin, diabetes and ischemic heart failure: a challenging relationship
Samuele Baldasseroni, Alessandro Antenore, Claudia Di Serio, Francesco Orso, Giuseppe Lonetto, Nadia Bartoli, Alice Foschini, Andrea Marella, Alessandra Pratesi, Salvatore Scarantino, Stefano Fumagalli, Matteo Monami, Edoardo Mannucci, Niccolò Marchionni, Francesca Tarantini
Cardiovascular Diabetology , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1475-2840-11-151
Abstract: We evaluated the level of adiponectin in patients with ischemic HF, with and without type 2 diabetes, to elucidate whether the metabolic syndrome was able to influence the relationship between AD and HF.We demonstrated that AD rises in patients with advanced HF, but to a lesser extent in diabetics than in non-diabetics. Diabetic patients with reduced systolic performance orchestrated a slower rise of AD which began only in face of overt HF. The different behavior of AD in the presence of diabetes was not entirely explained by differences in body mass index. In addition, NT-proBNP, the second strongest predictor of AD, did not differ significantly between diabetic and non-diabetic patients. These data indicate that some other mechanisms are involved in the regulation of AD in patients with type 2 diabetes and coronary artery disease.AD rises across chronic heart failure stages but this phenomenon is less evident in type 2 diabetic patients. In the presence of diabetes, the progressive increase of AD in relation to the severity of LV dysfunction is hampered and becomes evident only in overt HF.The adipose tissue should not be regarded as a simple site of lipid storage [1]; indeed it is able to secrete several peptides with hormonal properties that are involved in energy homeostasis as well as modulation of inflammation and regulation of many immunological mechanisms [2]. This heterogeneous group of hormones is named adipokines. Among these, adiponectin (AD) is by far the most abundant protein secreted by the adipose tissue [3]. Although it is produced almost exclusively by adipocytes, plasma levels of AD are found to be inversely correlated to visceral adiposity and body mass index (BMI) [3]. AD promotes peripheral insulin sensitivity [4] and inhibition of liver gluconeogenesis [5]. As a matter of fact, hypoadiponectinemia is known to be the molecular link between obesity and insulin-resistance, at the base of metabolic syndrome [2]. AD is able to predict diabetes ons
Policy Research in a Complex Context  [PDF]
Alessandro Colombo
Intelligent Information Management (IIM) , 2010, DOI: 10.4236/iim.2010.211071
Abstract: Today’s world is characterized by uncertainty and complexity. While examining the importance of research in such a context, the paper attempts to outline a first definition of the role and potential of policy research. The policy process itself has become increasingly complex and non linear, as has its relationship with research. Consequently, policy researchers’ contributions to policymakers may not have a direct, punctual and immediate influence on single issues, but rather a more pervasive, interactive, deliberative effect. Focusing on the theoretical definition of the risk, uncertainty and complexity of the policy process today, the paper outlines some questions and puts forward possible answers which offer a starting point for further analysis. It explores a new role for policy research and underlines the opportunities offered by argumentative, deliberative and multidisciplinary approaches which can positively impact democracy.
VaR-Optimal Risk Management in Regime-Switching Jump-Diffusion Models  [PDF]
Alessandro Ramponi
Journal of Mathematical Finance (JMF) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/jmf.2013.31009

In this paper we study a classical option-based portfolio strategy which minimizes the Value-at-Risk of the hedged position in a continuous time, regime-switching jump-diffusion market, by using Fourier Transform methods. However, the analysis of this hedging strategy, as well as the computational technique for its implementation, is fairly general, i.e. it can be applied to any dynamical model for which Fourier transform methods are viable.

Editorial of the Open Journal on Modelling and Simulation  [PDF]
Alessandro Bazzi
Open Journal of Modelling and Simulation (OJMSi) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/ojmsi.2013.13004
Abstract: Editorial of the Open Journal on Modelling and Simulation
A Fiber Pull-Out Based Model for Synthetic Fiber Reinforced Concrete Beams under a Flexural Load  [PDF]
Alessandro Paglia
Open Journal of Civil Engineering (OJCE) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/ojce.2013.33025

This work is intended to be a simple contribution to building a model able to implement theoretical results related to the random oriented fiber reinforced concrete in a procedure that could be used in structures analysis and design involving fiber reinforced elements. Here follows a short outline: In the introduction chapter the problem is presented together the work done. Section 2 develops some ancillary concepts of this material and its mechanical properties, while in Section 3, following the path of other researchers, the assumptions made to solve the problem are presented, together with the most relevant results related to presence of 3D randomly oriented fiber. In the following section a review of the mechanical process of fiber pull-out is done, and the results, mostly due to Victor Li researches, of a 3D randomly oriented synthetic fiber stress vs crack opening in a pull-out process from a cement matrix. In Section 5 the author, after making some assumptions about the configuration of the strain and crack geometry in the cross section where failure is assume to occur under flexural bending moment, the resultant stress is integrated to find the resultant internal moment vs increasing strain and crack width. In this analysis, the crack bridging law for synthetic fiber in FRC presented in the previous section is taken into account. In Section 6, a procedure to find a cross section configuration in equilibrium under external bending moment has been built. Under the assumption of a perfectly plastic collapse mechanism a numerical simulation is conducted on a specimen that undergoes a four-point bending test. A comparison with the trend of a similar test on a synthetic FRC sample has been done. The work is completed by the conclusions that could be inferred from this work.

The Combination of Three Techniques for Breast Reduction: A Series of Ten Consecutive Cases  [PDF]
Alessandro Borgognone
Modern Plastic Surgery (MPS) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/mps.2014.43009

There is continuing controversy regarding the most effective and safest technique for breast reduction surgery. This case series describes our experience with a breast reduction approach that combines three techniques aimed at addressing three different aspects of breast reduction: skin reduction, shaping, and nipple areolar complex shaping. We assessed the perioperative course and postoperative outcomes (for a mean of 19 months) of 10 consecutive women who underwent breast reduction surgery involving a combination of three techniques: “inverted T” skin reduction, modified Hall-Findley supero-medial pedicle for glandular reduction, and inferior de-epithelialized flap (modified “Foustanos” flap) for molding and improved shaping of the breast. The final bra cup size was C or D in all patients. The overall results were graded as excellent in four patients and very good in six patients. Each patient was completely satisfied with her surgery. Six patients developed venous congestion of the nipple areolar complex, which resolved within 24 - 48 hours after surgery. Two patients had uneventful delayed wound healing in the vertical scar of the inverted T pattern. There was a 100% nipple areolar complex survival rate. No patient had a major adverse event, permanently altered nipple areolar complex sensitivity, or bottoming out of the lower pole. None required revision surgery. This case series confirms our expectations that the solution to questions about breast reduction methods may depend on melding different techniques into a single procedure. The combination of techniques herein described was both effective and safe. Level of Evidence: Level IV, therapeutic study.

Bringing Certainty and Order Out of the Wilderness of Law  [PDF]
Alessandro Martinuzzi
Beijing Law Review (BLR) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/blr.2014.53017
Abstract: The codification of the French civil law represented the first significant initiative which provided the moral and intellectual impetus for systematic reorganization and reform of the law. The growing production of laws by the legislatures, together with the courts’ constant definition of the principles of law, has always constituted a massive problem in providing a service of certain and equal justice. The French model of codification was undoubtedly useful but it did not suffice, by itself, to preserve a coherent and accessible system of law. The experience of the last decades showed a proliferation of new sources of law (including multilevel systems of protection of fundamental rights) that increased the complexity of law on a more than proportional scale. In order to tackle the compelling need of certainty and order in the legal systems, the French codification approach had been developed and integrated with other simplifying and reorganizing tools. The different experiences are interesting under three profiles: a) the subjects dedicated to the function of simplifying and clarifying the law; b) the tools used to perform the function; c) the effects produced in the legal systems. The comparative analysis of the different experiences in Civil law and Common law countries reveals a major tendency to constitute independent bodies by initiative of a law experts elìte of lawyers, judges and academics. Generally, these bodies adopt a scientific method in order to produce shared documents which are supposed to represent a valid reference for all the legal operators. Most of the time there is no political influence on the process, contributing to preserve the authoritativeness of the body. Notwithstanding, the documents may be addressed to the parliaments with the purpose to enact law reforms through the legislative process. Out of these cases, the documents are supposed to have mere persuasive value but it is disputed how they affect the other sources of law when they are widely adopted by courts.
External Debt and Stabilizing Macroeconomic Policies  [PDF]
Alessandro Piergallini
Theoretical Economics Letters (TEL) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/tel.2015.56083
Abstract: This paper investigates the dynamic effects of fiscal and monetary feedback policy rules in a small open economy with flexible exchange rates and risk premia on external debt. It is shown that equilibrium uniqueness and stability occur under locally Ricardian fiscal policies regardless of the degree of reaction of nominal interest rates to inflation, in contrast with closed-economy environments. Fiscal revaluation mechanisms of the type predicted by the fiscal theory of the price level are precluded by international parity conditions. As a result, locally non-Ricardian fiscal policies are destabilizing even under an accommodating monetary policy stance.
Economic Diversity and Employment Levels in Italian Provinces over the Period 1951-2001: Does a Recurrent Industrial Pattern Exist?  [PDF]
Alessandro Marra, Vittorio Carlei, Alessandro Crociata
Modern Economy (ME) , 2011, DOI: 10.4236/me.2011.23049
Abstract: Economic diversity is crucial to explain how geographic areas grow and evolve: economic diversity facilitates the transmission of ideas (through knowledge spillovers) and the outsourcing of activities (city-nurseries). In this paper we focus on these theoretical perspectives and examine the industry structure and growth of Italian provinces. We use data on employment levels in 47 economic sectors in 103 provinces and measure their degree of diversity over the period 1951-2001. By taking into account both provincial size (i.e., employment levels) and temporal dimension we test whether economic initiatives benefit from being localised in areas that are highly diversified from an industrial point of view. After confirming the relevance of economic diversity we investigate the industry pattern that boosted growth in the largest (in terms of number of employees) provinces in our sample. Our results confirm the Jacobs’ intuitions about how cities evolve and contribute to debate by reducing the gap between some Jacobs’ hypotheses and major theses.
CDS Evaluation Model with Neural Networks  [PDF]
Eliana Angelini, Alessandro Ludovici
Journal of Service Science and Management (JSSM) , 2009, DOI: 10.4236/jssm.2009.21003
Abstract: This paper provides a methodology for valuing credit default swaps (CDS). In these financial instruments a sequence of payments is promised in return for protection against the credit losses in the event of default. Given the widespread use of credit default swaps, one major concern is whether the credit risk has been priced accurately. Credit risk assessment of counterparty is an area of renewed interest due to the present financial crises. This article proposes a non parametric model for estimating pricing of the CDS, using learning networks, based on the structural approach pioneered by Merton [1] as regards the independent variables; he proposed a model for as-sessing the credit risk of a company by characterizing the company’s equity as a call option on its assets. The model that we are introducing turns out peculiar not only for the use of the neural network, but also for the use of the implied volatility of one-year options written on the shares of the analyzed companies, instead of historical volatility: this leads to a higher capability of getting the signals launched by the market about the future creditworthiness of the firm (historic volatility, being a medium value, brings in temporal lags in the evaluation). Besides, our analysis differs from the structural approach for the fact that it considers the 30-month mean-reverting historical series for CDS spreads, and this turns out to be one of the main advantages of our forward-looking model.
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