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Population, Ecology, and Threats to Two Endemic and Threatened Terrestrial Chelonians of the Western Ghats, India
Arun Kanagavel,Shiny M. Rehel,Rajeev Raghavan
ISRN Biodiversity , 2013, DOI: 10.1155/2013/341687
Abstract: The Western Ghats part of the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka hotspot harbors two endemic terrestrial chelonians, the Cochin forest cane turtle Vijayachelys silvatica and the Travancore tortoise Indotestudo travancorica. Population estimates as well as information on the scale and intensity of threats for these chelonians are largely unavailable. This study attempts to address these gaps for two hill ranges of the Western Ghats. Thirty random quadrats at eight forest ranges were surveyed for chelonians and their carapaces recording any found en route and also during opportunistic surveys. Three live V. silvatica and 38 I. travancorica were subsequently encountered and had overall densities of 0.006 and 0.03 individuals per hectare, respectively. These chelonians were found at quadrats with lower light intensity and soil temperature. Nine carapaces were found during the field surveys: seven the result of human consumption, one trapped in a pit, and another consumed by a wild animal. In addition to field surveys, household surveys in 26 indigenous and nonindigenous human settlements resulted in the observation of one V. silvatica and 38 I. travancorica including a carapace. Roads were surveyed to assess the threat they posed to chelonians, resulting in the observation of two I. travancorica road kills. Increased interactions and discussions between the management authorities and local communities need to be promoted if chelonian conservation is to improve in the landscape. 1. Introduction The Western Ghats (WG) region in India, part of the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka Biodiversity Hotspot is globally renowned for its diversity of endemic amphibian, reptile, and fish species [1–3]. The two endemic chelonian genera in the WG are represented by the Travancore tortoise (Indotestudo travancorica) and the Cochin forest cane turtle (Vijayachelys silvatica); both threatened with extinction [4, 5]. The cane turtle is listed as “Endangered” while the Travancore tortoise is “Vulnerable” in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species [4, 5]. Of these sympatric, cryptic species, Travancore tortoises are known to be more widespread than cane turtles [6, 7]. The Travancore tortoise is found in rocky hills at elevations of 100–1000?m a.s.l. across the southern WG in a multitude of habitats, such as evergreen, semievergreen, bamboo, Lantana camara and Cromolarium glandulosum bushes, and rubber and teak plantations [8–12]. On the other hand, the Cochin forest cane turtle, known to be a habitat specialist associated with evergreen vegetation, has also been found in semievergreen, deciduous,
Potential for Community and Conservation Reserves in the Western Ghats, India
Arun Kanagavel,Shijo Joseph,Revati Pandya,Rajeev Raghavan
Asian Journal of Conservation Biology , 2013,
Abstract: Protected Areas represent the world’s economic and political commitment towards the conservation of biodiversity. The Western Ghats (WG) in peninsular India, part of the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka Hotspot has the highest human population density and population pressure in the world and is in need of urgent conservation attention. Community Reserves and Conservation Reserves are protected area systems in India which integrate local communities as well as private organisations into protected area management. The potential for Community and Conservation Reserves was evaluated at 25 reserve forests and privately owned/leased forest fragments at Kodaikanal, Theni and Valparai, which are limited-access areas in the human-dominated landscape of the southern WG. Data collection at each site, on a range of issues, was based upon the characteristics of local communities which would be central to the integration of resource-use, community participation and biodiversity conservation. The sites where local communities preferred to participate in protected area management were further prioritized through ranking them for the variables and index calculated. Sixteen potential, community and conservation reserves were subsequently identified and prioritised. An analysis of the perceptions, of forest department officials and conservation researchers, towards the establishment of such reserves revealed that they were unsure whether these reserve systems would be beneficial for biodiversity conservation.
The tragedy of the nature photography commons
Diogo Veríssimo,Arun Kanagavel,K. S Seshadri,Rajeev Raghavan
Asian Journal of Conservation Biology , 2013,
Abstract: EDITORIAL
Improved Term Weighting Technique for Automatic Web Page Classification  [PDF]
Kathirvalavakumar Thangairulappan, Aruna Devi Kanagavel
Journal of Intelligent Learning Systems and Applications (JILSA) , 2016, DOI: 10.4236/jilsa.2016.84006
Abstract: Automatic web page classification has become inevitable for web directories due to the multitude of web pages in the World Wide Web. In this paper an improved Term Weighting technique is proposed for automatic and effective classification of web pages. The web documents are represented as set of features. The proposed method selects and extracts the most prominent features reducing the high dimensionality problem of classifier. The proper selection of features among the large set improves the performance of the classifier. The proposed algorithm is implemented and tested on a benchmarked dataset. The results show the better performance than most of the existing term weighting techniques.
Efficacy of Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS) after Multiple Subpial Transections (MST) for Extra-Temporal Seizure Foci  [PDF]
Arun Angelo Patil, Arun Anthony, Richard Andrews
Surgical Science (SS) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/ss.2013.45053
Abstract:

Background: The effect of Vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) therapy following major resective surgeries has been reported. However, the effect of VNS therapy following multiple-subpial-transections (MST) has not been reported. The objective of this paper is to examine the beneficial effect of VNS therapy following MST. Methods: There are 22 patients aged 10 - 55 years. Male/female distribution is 11/11 and follow-up is 24 - 148 months (median of 120 months). Seizure foci were bilateral in 9 patients, multi-lobar (unilateral) in 12 patients and single-lobar in 1 patient. MST was performed over broad areas in and around the seizure foci. VNS implantation was done when the response to MST procedure was poor (1 patients), or there was recurrence of seizures (21 patients). Interval between MST and VNS implanttation varied from one month to three years (median of 2 years). Results: Thirteen patients (59%) are seizure free (Engel’ Class I), 8 (36.5%) have greater than 90% reduction in seizure frequency (Class II), and 1 (4.5%) has between 50% - 90% reduction in seizure frequency (Class III). Conclusion: The results show that VNS therapy produced meaningful improvement in seizure outcome in all patients with extra-temporal seizures that had inadequate response to MST.

Comparison of the Folstein Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) to the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) as a Cognitive Screening Tool in an Inpatient Rehabilitation Setting  [PDF]
Arun Aggarwal, Emma Kean
Neuroscience & Medicine (NM) , 2010, DOI: 10.4236/nm.2010.12006
Abstract: Identifying the presence of cognitive impairment in patients admitted for inpatient rehabilitation is important as it may impact on their ability to participate in a rehabilitation program. The Folstein Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) has been used by clinicians as a cognitive screening tool for its convenience, even though it is not sensitive, and often fails to detect cognitive impairment. Recently, the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) has been developed as a brief cognitive screening tool to detect mild-moderate cognitive impairment. We performed a longitudinal study to compare the utility of the MMSE and MoCA in an inpatient rehabilitation setting. A total of 50 consecutive patients were studied with an average age of 71.7 years of age. The mean test score for MMSE was 26.5 and 22.2 for the MoCA. The Pearson’s correlation coefficient between the scores was 0.695 (p < 0.003). The mean performance time for the MMSE was 7.4 minutes and 14.8 minutes for the MoCA. MMSE did not perform well as a screening instrument for mild cognitive impairment as there were 43 patients who scored 24 or more on MMSE, and 25 patients (58%) scored 25 or less on MoCA, indicating the presence of cognitive impairment. Even though the MoCA takes longer to administer, the additional important information provided indicates that the MoCA should be used rather than the MMSE as a cogni-tive screening tool.
A Low Power and High Speed Viterbi Decoder Based on Deep Pipelined, Clock Blocking and Hazards Filtering  [PDF]
C. ARUN, V. RAJAMANI
Int'l J. of Communications, Network and System Sciences (IJCNS) , 2009, DOI: 10.4236/ijcns.2009.26064
Abstract: A high speed and low power Viterbi decoder architecture design based on deep pipelined, clock gating and toggle filtering has been presented in this paper. The Add-Compare-Select (ACS) and Trace Back (TB) units and its sub circuits of the decoder have been operated in deep pipelined manner to achieve high transmission rate. The Power dissipation analysis is also investigated and compared with the existing results. The techniques that have been employed in our low-power design are clock-gating and toggle filtering. The synthesized circuits are placed and routed in the standard cell design environment and implemented on a Xilinx XC2VP2fg256-6 FPGA device. Power estimation obtained through gate level simulations indicated that the proposed design reduces the power dissipation of an original Viterbi decoder design by 68.82% and a speed of 145 MHz is achieved.
Urban Violence in Northern Border of Mexico: A Study from Nuevo León State  [PDF]
Arun kumar Acharya
Sociology Mind (SM) , 2011, DOI: 10.4236/sm.2011.14023
Abstract: Urban violence has reached record level in many nations, and having devastating impact on people’s health and livelihood as well as economic prospects. Today, for millions of people around the world, violence, or the fear of violence, is a daily reality. In Mexico since the year 2006 the northern border states are become more violent due to fight against the drug trafficking. In this study, we have taken Nuevo León state as area of study, and we have seen from the result; that urban violence in Nuevo León has increased in an unprecedented manner during last few years. Much of this urban violence is a consequence of rural-to-urban migration and exponential urbanization. We have also seen in the study that urban violence is a multi-factorial phenomena and main reason behind this is inequality among city dwellers. This is a potential source of frustration which increasing risk of urban violence, especially if certain groups are underprivileged and suffers from social exclusion.
Evolutionary Relationship of Wheat Protein Disulphide Isomerase (PDI) Gene Promoter Sequence Based on Phylogenetic Analysis  [PDF]
Arun Prabhu Dhanapal
American Journal of Plant Sciences (AJPS) , 2012, DOI: 10.4236/ajps.2012.33045
Abstract: Protein disulphide isomerase (PDI) is an oxidoreductase enzyme abundant in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). In plants, PDIs have been shown to assist the folding and deposition of seed storage proteins during the biogenesis of protein bodies in the endosperm. Cloning and characterization of the complete set of genes encoding PDI and PDI like proteins in bread wheat (Triticum aestivum cv. Chinese Spring) and the comparison of their sequence, structure and expression with homologous genes from other plant species were reported in our previous publications. Promoter sequences of three homoeologous genes encoding typical PDI, located on chromosome group 4 of bread wheat, and PDI promoter sequence analysis of Triticum urartu, Aegilops speltoides and Aegilops tauschii had also been reported previously. In this study, we report the isolation and sequencing of a ~700 bp region, comprising ~600 bp of the putative promoter region and 88 bp of the first exon of the typical PDI gene, in five accessions each from Triticum urartu (AA), Aegilops speltoides (BB) and Aegilops tauschii (DD). Sequence analysis indicated large variation among sequences belonging to the different genomes, while close similarity was found within each species and with the corresponding homoeologous PDI sequences of Triticum aestivum cv. CS (AABBDD) resulting in an overall high conservation of the sequence conferring endosperm-specific expression.
Development of Efficient Fermentation Process at Bioreactor Level by Taguchi's Orthogonal Array Methodology for Enhanced Dextransucrase Production from Weissella confusa Cab3  [PDF]
Shraddha Shukla, Arun Goyal
Advances in Microbiology (AiM) , 2012, DOI: 10.4236/aim.2012.23033
Abstract: The influence of medium ingredients on extracellular dextransucrase production by a new bacterial strain Weissella confusa Cab3 (Genbank Accession Number JX649223) was evaluated using fractional factorial design of Taguchi's orthogonal array. Four metabolism influencing factors viz. sucrose, yeast extract, K2HPO4 and Tween80 were selected to optimize dextransucrase production by W. confusa Cab3 using fractional factorial design of Taguchi methodology. Based on the influence of interaction components of fermentation, least significant factors of individual level have higher interaction severity index and vice versa for enzyme production from Weissella confusa Cab3. Sucrose and yeast extract were found to be the most significant factors which positively influenced the dextransucrase production. The optimized medium composition consisted of sucrose—5%; yeast extract—2%; K2HPO4—1.0%; Tween80—0.5%, based on Taguchi orthogonal array method. The optimized composition gave an experimental value of dextransucrase activity of 17.9 U/ml at shake flask level which corresponded well with the predicted value of 17.54 U/ml by the model. The optimized medium by Taguchi method gave significant (3 fold) enhancement of dextransucrase activity as compared to unoptimised enzyme activity of 6.0 U/ml. The dextransucrase production was scaled up in lab scale bioreactor resulting in further enhancement of enzyme activity (22.0 U/ml).
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